Thursday, October 19, 2017


There are things we can change. There are things we can't. Things we change are one step away from our current world view, which is why two people create change. (1) We create our own change, and (2) people who genuinely see us, help us change. Reality is a controlled hallucination. Our minds combine what we have taken in from the world, and piece it together slowly through trial and error. That process never jumps. It can't. It can only combine things that are there. In our head. In our heart. My things are not your things, and so you can't change them. Unless you see them, because then they become your things too. That is when things change. If you want someone to change, they have to be part of you. You have to be part of them. See.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Learning Tools

I recently downloaded Tinycards in my attempt to break my English monotongue world. It is old school flashcards made easier. You can put photos or text on either side of decks of cards you create. It then gamifies it, to make learning easier. I first heard of Spaced Repetition Systems through Fluent Forever, and Anki SRS. The basic idea is that instead of hammering away at things you know, you focus on the things you don't. Just as you are forgetting something it gets tested again. The gaps getting bigger, and bigger, as the knowledge is soaked more deeply. Almost forgetting, and the little bit of struggle to 'find that info' is a great way to create the meaningful connections that make things stick.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Controlled Hallucination

What we experience is a controlled hallucination. Our brain creates our world, from various inputs based on what we have sensed before. Our brain creates our world, through trial and error. A tree only becomes a tree once I have the word, the smell, the feel and the knowledge of what it is. It is closer to the string of noise we hear when someone speaks a language we don't understand. Words aren't separate from each other, they become separate as we add meaning and context. We don't have to understand the world for a best guess to be useful. Tacit Knowledge is when I understand something, but don't know why I understand it. I may have a useful story to make sense of it. Whether that story is right or wrong doesn't matter, if it helps me do what I need to do. When our hallucinations clash, we need new stories. Shared stories.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Second Degree

Building trust is hard. The idea of six degrees of separation is that all people everywhere are six 'friend of friend' steps away from each other. This is hard to believe when we seem so different to each other. 'The Righteous Mind' looks at why good people disagree on things where it is hard to believe someone could disagree with us... and still be good. With our close friends, we are comfortable cutting them some slack. When they have a crazy view, we don't write them off because of a shared history. With strangers we are more brutal. The only people who change other people's views are friends. Either friends, or people we have sufficient respect for to value their opinion. Trusting someone increases our vulnerability. To trust someone six degrees away is hard, but we could work at trusting those people who we trust trust. We could start by making more introductions. By making six into five.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Defining Yourself

The concept of Neti Neti is used in Vedantic philosophy to figure out who 'you' are. Through a process of negation, 'Not this, Not this', points out that our idea of self can't be something that is temporary. I am not the same person I was yesterday. I will not be the same person tomorrow. Those people are connected through a story, but I am connected in the same way to everyone else through stories too. Stories change. We change. Humanism and the enlightenment raised the sovereignty of the individual over themselves, and created the idea of Nations. 'The People'. When you apply the same Neti Neti process to 'The People', our ideas around Nationalism fall apart. The idea that we are separate falls apart. 

Tuesday, October 10, 2017


I believe we should have local power combined with the four freedoms of movement (people, goods, services, and capital). Gradually all natural resources should be viewed as universally owned on a custodial basis. This doesn't mean state-run, but it would mean the transition of monetisable assets into Sovereign and Community Wealth Funds. It would mean a Universal Basic Income as a dividend on our common wealth. It would still mean private property, but justified by a sustainable system with foundational opportunity. The essence of democracy is consent of the governed. Consent is loaned, and can be withdrawn. That is only possible if you can vote with your feet, and only reasonable if the area of control is small. Pragmatism means transitional constraints of the four freedoms makes sense, but structural separation is the definition of Apartheid.

Sunday, October 08, 2017

Being Part

Imagine a world with zero transaction costs, perfect transparency, and the instant ability to repeat anything that has been done before. A world that understands how we learn, and can teach skills freely, efficiently and effectively. To everyone. What competitive advantages would be left? Relationships. Deep soaking. Understanding the unique context of the way individuals interpret the world, by being part of that interpretation. There are some books that are worth rereading. People that you want to to see again. Radical honesty isn't removing the filter, it is adding time. Time doesn't scale. Personal relationships would be left.

Complex, Unique, Temporary

Saturday, October 07, 2017

With Respect

How do you support someone in a need without creating a hierarchy? A start is developing a sense of humility about the limits of our ability. We are all in need. Very few of us are genius level rocket scientists pushing the boundaries of human thought. Even the genius tends to lack other skills that make them useless without being part of a team. People are essentialists. The problem with most meritocracy is not creating great incentives, it is believing those currently with merit are essentially better - i.e. superiority complex. Not that you know better now, but that you are better. Supporting someone in need without creating hierarchy starts with seeing the areas we need help. Learning the difficult skill of asking for help. Learning to see the strength in others. Pared with offering mutual support.