The Post-Truth World

Are we living in a world of “Alternative Facts”?

Is truth plain and simple?

No, not anymore, it’s abused and distorted now.

Some people say, there is NO truth, only OPINIONS!

The free press is exposing more and more of what goes on in the corridors of power, making us aware of how much we are deceived!

The World of Post-Truth is characterised by lots of mis-information and politicians that have no shame.

 

Lets define Post-Truth–objective, hard facts are not used in the shaping of public opinion.

Appeals are made to the emotions which are more potent.

Fake news and outright lies!

There was once TRUTH, but the powers that be have abandoned it in favour of fake facts and lies that appeal to people’s emotional biases.

Post-Truth is embedded in humans. For centuries fiction was spread about the world. No one questioned the factual truth of the Bible.

People are used to fictions to explain things.

 

When a thousand people believe in something for one month, that’s fake news.

When a couple of billion believe it for thousands of years, that’s religion.

 

The good that came out of Biblical fictions is that humans became more compassionate, courageous and creative.

Politicians know that if you stick to the truth, few people will follow you. It’s a sad story!

Humans prefer POWER to TRUTH.

We spend far more time and effort on trying to control things as trying to understand things.

But even when we understand things, we only do so because we hope through understanding, the world will be easier to control!

 

What are the things that characterise a Post-Truth world?

People tend to be too credulous, believing almost anything that is repeated enough.

Also, some tend to be too cautious, disregarding evidence and expert opinion.

These tendencies emerge when emotions are aroused.

People tend to TRUST powerful people less in a Post-Truth world.

 

What is to be done to eliminate fake news?

We need to cultivate better ideas and habits.

Better leaders are needed who don’t gloss over the truth.

We need an environment and educational system that teaches cautious scepticism and open mindedness. Also people should analyse things closer to uncover the facts.

 

What dissolves the fictions we believe?

Science shows us, constantly, much of what we think about the world is false.

Also, the world has shrunk through globalisation and we wonder what we think in our culture is so, or just emotional bias in our area.

 

What is the effect of this Post-Truth era?

People feel like they cannot distinguish truth from lies, so they choose leaders on more emotional factors.

We’ve lost trust in our intellect, so we go with our gut feelings instead.

Authoritive Truths–There are many areas of life that we don’t know much about so we defer to the authority of experts. But some charlatans pretend to be experts.

Who to trust?

Do we trust our gut or expert opinion.

It’s a balance of our judgements and the expertise of others.

We have to analyse the evidence so as to take care of whom we grant authority to and on what basis.

 

Truths that are likely to be understood by only a small number of people with specialised knowledge is called esoteric truth. Another form of esoteric truth is truth that is hidden.

Conspiracy theories arise because people believe the truth has been hidden.

 

Are people today governed by reason and truth?

No, because this is the era of fake, post-truth.

 

What are Empirical Truths?

These are truths based on observation and experience alone.

They have no regard for theory.

But experience alone leaves us with uncertainty.

So Empirical Truth is always open to scrutiny, revision and rejection.

 

What can we use as a GUIDE TO THE TRUTH?

Think for yourself and do the research.

Be sceptical.

Ask questions, especially of people in power, such as:

Who benefits from this version of the “truth”?

 

So, in conclusion:

When you are wandering through the maze of knowledge, you will find many isms, such as   idealism, pragmatism, scepticism, etc.

If you invent your own “ism” you might become famous!!!

Remember that TRUTH is liable to CHANGE!

Truth is conditional and conditions change.

Collect observations as they pass through your present moments.

Just maybe you will stumble on a new truth OR POST-TRUTH!!!

Philosophical Frankenstein

It’s remarkable how much philosophy, psychology and social science you can glean from a ¬† Horror story!

Short Summary of the novel Frankenstein by Mary Shelley:

Scientist Victor Frankenstein, whose god is science, wants to give life to a being like himself, only more perfect.

However, his creation is NOT the perfect specimen he imagined, BUT and ugly creature that he rejects and so does mankind.

The monster resents being rejected by everybody and with no help from his creator, he seeks revenge through killing and terror.

 

What are the philosophical themes?

Tampering with nature, taking no responsibility for your creation and the need for love and nurturing so as to survive in a rough world.

Frankenstein was obsessed with the need to create life.

He took on the role of God.

He had the desire to break scientific boundaries.

 

Frankenstein is a cautionary tale for the Present.

Scientists today need to take proper treatment of the organisms they create. They need to be supervised by monitoring agencies.

Frankenstein is a tale of ethics concerning scientific research in the fields of life extension, cloning and artificial intelligence.

 

Frankenstein should have nurtured his creation with love.

He should of given his creation a name and welcomed him into the world. Things would have turned out different if he took responsibility.

Was Frankenstein’s monster evil or just a victim of his creator’s ineptness?

Some say, there is good and there is evil, there is no gray area.

But life isn’t that tidy!

Life experience involves mixing and blending of characteristics.

Shelley, in writing her story, draws on the idea that people are born good and evil comes later, the result of the corruption that society inflicts.

The monster, at the start, is a decent, helpful, innocent and naive person.

But when he is rejected by his creator and society, he is forced to live in isolation.

He becomes evil because of his circumstances.

If corrupt society is the source of evil, you will have to put in place the right kind of society to reduce the chances of evil.

What is the right kind of society???

 

Frankenstein also has some Freudian connections:

The Id represents the primal demands and needs of humans.

For Frankenstein, he has the need to create that ends up with a monster.

This is his Id at work.

There is always the conflict between the creator and the created, which is the conflict between the Ego and the Id.

The monster represents the Id and Frankenstein, the creator, has a responsibility to give some sense of conscience, or Ego, upon his creation.

The conflict between Ego and Id feeds Frankenstein’s repulsion to the monster to the point that he can’t stand the sight of his own creation.

So the Id is the fall of both Frankenstein and his monster.

So there can be a mixture of good and evil in human nature.

THE DEBATE GOES ON…

What is the Worst Scenario That Could Happen?

I hope this subject isn’t too pessimistic, but…

What would it mean if a global disaster wiped out all but 2% of the world’s population?

That would leave about 1,400,000 people!

Well, that would be much better than wiping out 100%.

Total destruction would be the worst scenario that could happen.

2% survival is a better scenario.

WHY?

Because the population left could continue to progress in science, art and future discoveries.

Saving 2% would be great because humans are what makes this world unique!

So, a world with humans is far richer than a world without humans.

YES, definitely.

Would it be so bad if the remainder of the people, through scientific advancement, started cloning humans?There would only be a gender difference (men and women).

Otherwise people would differ only with regard to their inner moral character so judgements would have a less superficial basis than before.

The cloning would mean people would have a greater regard for each other.

Also, cultural diversity would disappear and there would be no more conflict or injustice arising from nationality.

Some people think cloning humans would be a global worst scenario.

 

Lets look at the Pros and Cons:

Would it be so wrong to produce a cloned human?

Some would say: A person has the right to a genetically unique nature and they also have the right to an open future.

Would it bother you if there was another you roaming around?

Is uniqueness so important?

No one is against twins!

As far as an open future –you would have it because your inner character would be different.

Elimination of defective genes would be an important Pro.

Cloned children wouldn’t suffer from genetic diseases.

Increased chances of producing healthy people by cloning healthy human cells.

Cloning would change the world in a positive way.

You could clone people with high intellect so the clone would offer potential benefits to others.

Cure disorders by cloning perfectly compatible organs.

Cloned organ banks would save people who otherwise would die.

Organs would be available immediately.

Cons:

Faster Aging–Older cells are used for cloning which might create premature aging.

Reduced Individuality–A human clone is a brand new set of life with unique preferences, but would we lose individuality?

Not necessarily, just because a clone would have the ability to be intellectual, doesn’t mean they have to be.

Cloning interferes with nature–Cloning is an artificial process and things could go wrong, a life could be altered or changed negatively.

In conclusion:

So, human extinction would be a terrible loss in science, art, literature, technology and medicine plus all the wonders of human greatness.

But the 2% that survived could start from scratch, so to speak, but they would have scientific knowledge already.

So, the 1,400,000 left after the disaster would produce a…

BRAVE NEW WORLD, with intelligent clones!!!

Will Civilization Collapse?

Years ago you used to see doom-mongers with “the end is nigh” written on their sandwich boards.

These predictions usually were based on interpretations of the Bible.

BUT we are still here!

Now scientists and politicians are warning that civilisation might be heading for a tipping point, due to poor world leadership, social unrest, population expansion, climate change, depletion of resources and inequality.

This scenario is scarier than a Frankenstein movie!

When will civilization collapse?

According to the Powers That Be–It has already started!

It might totally collapse in 40 to 50 years if we don’t do something to turn things around.

In the meantime society is getting restless!

How does social unrest start?

The population expands, supply of labour is more than is needed so it becomes cheap. Wealthy elites stick together and living standards of the lower class fall. Society becomes more UNEQUAL. The infighting between these groups starts social unrest.

Do we resist change?

Yes. When inequality and resource depletion meet they cause collapse–they fuel each other.

The ‘haves”are protected by their wealth from resource depletion for longer than the “have-nots” and so there is resistance to a change of strategy until it is too late.

The gap between the richest 1% and everyone else has been growing since the financial collapse of 2008.

How did the 2008 financial crisis occur?

In 2006 house prices began to fall and so the deregulated banks allowed people to take out mortgages for 100% of the value of a new house.

Deregulated banks started trading profitable securities worldwide which were mortgage backed.

People reneged on their 100% loans, so the securities lost value and the banks panicked when they had to absorb the losses. They, then, stopped landing to each other.

Government bank bailouts started.

An economic stimulus package was started, tax cuts and public works spending put money back into the economy.

The outcome: The realisation that banks couldn’t regulate themselves.

Can we avoid another global financial crisis?

Financial crisis is one of the stages of COLLAPSE.

Why do collapses happen?

Financial crisis-see 2008 collapse.

Climate change–when the stability of the climate changes it results in crop failures, floods and droughts.

Environmental Collapse–people start to cut down trees (deforestation), pollution from over use of fossil fuels.

Cars, planes and industry increase carbon emissions.

Poor World Leadership–leaders that tend to wait and see instead of finding solutions now. Political will is lacking.

Inequality–the gap between rich and poor drives social unrest which handicaps a societies ability to respond to the problems, ecological, social and economic.

Resource Depletion–oil will run out someday soon but the world relies heavily on fossil fuels.

Deforestation and Artic ice melts are continuing.

Rivers are drying up so future water shortages will develop.

Wars might be fought over water!

Overpopulation–will collapse the world’s food supply.

Crop failures cause by climate change–overfishing of the oceans which are getting polluted.

If we keep adding billions of people we will exceed the carrying capacity of the planet.

More people tends to create more pollution.

 

Well, my friends, that is what collapse looks like.

It may take years or decades, BUT it is already set in motion! People feel hopeless!

Is there hope? What to do?

We lack the knowledge of HOW TO LIVE!

Our original form of human social organisation was TRIBALISM, which didn’t have any impact on the environment.

The problems listed above are motivated and justified on the thinking that we humans can do what we please–we can build, dam up, extract, cut down, pollute as much as we want, shaping the world to our desires.

Maybe, during this collapsing process, we can start from scratch.

Can we learn from the hunter-gatherers?

They knew how to live so they didn’t ruin their environment on which they depended on for survival?

I think we have to simplify life:

Go into the garden and read nature’s signs.

Do things yourself–start a veg garden and feed yourself.

Retreat to the countryside, inhale fresh air, feel the sun on your face and let go.

Be a modern day hunter-gatherer.

 

We have to make the best of our situation and use the opportunity to create something better.

Step back to go forward OR in other words:

GO BACK TO THE FUTURE!!!