Tuesday, 23 October 2012

This story is partially about a man named Dont-Give-A-Fuck

Sovereignty died with the introduction of the internet.

Actually, he started to get sick a little further back, somewhere around the invention of computers, and eventually became extremely ill.  He is now quite dead.

Of course, Sovereignty's death has had little effect on the rest of Geo-Political Organization, which is still catching up with the matter.  You know how when a person dies, various organizations and government bodies continue to send mail and coupons and bills and surveys addressed to that person, as if he wasn't dead yet?  This is quite a lot like that.  Sovereignty is dead, but he died alone at home when he tripped over the toaster cord, which was in a new spot because he was re-arranging his kitchen, throwing out the deep fryer and installing a new oven, and banged his head on the table.  His sister, Socialism, a transvestite who used to date Communism (before he died too), was around, but they had had a falling out, and she was caught up in her own assortment of problems.  She was also well established in the LGBTQIA crowd, which has gained tremondous steam, and is doing quite well now.

Sovereignty's cousin, Anarchy, and his cousin's boyfriend, Dont-Give-A-Fuck, might have come, as Sovereignty and Don't-Give-A-Fuck actually made quite good friends, but they were on vacation in Africa.  And since his sister Self-Emergence and their half-brother Locally-Organized-Ever-Changing-Flows were playing with dolphins in Brazil, nobody was around to report on Sovereignty's death.  So everyone kept hollering on him, and sending him mail, and addressing him, and looking to him for answers, as if he were still alive, completely oblivious to the fact that he was actually dead, on his kitchen floor, being eaten away at by rats.

At this point, Sovereignty has been eroded to his skeleton.  There is basically nothing left but the bare bones.  The muscle is gone, the intellect is gone, the action is gone  It is quite gruesome, and it has actually started to stink up the apartment quite terribly, if not the whole hallway.

The hallway was actually empty, unoccupied, vacant.  Aside from Sovereignty (who is now dead), and the myriad buggers chewing away at whatever is left of his flesh and blood, all the other tenants either died sometime ago, or moved on to bigger and better things.  Most likely they got caught up in the cult that Finance started before he got married (to himself), or else just retired to small islands to play with the waves and marvel at the stars.  God how Sovereignty used to wish he could just retire to small islands to play with the waves and marvel at the stars.

The biochemical-blizzard-zoo of microbial-metabo-symbiosys meticulously morphing Sovereignty's body into fizzle-heavy-decompost more or less became an entity unto itself.  I'd hardly have been able to justify so many adjectives if it hadn't.  Naturally, it made it's way into the apartment vents and airway routing systems, establishing a steady flow towards the main level apartments and downspouts, eventually oozing out onto the streets.

The people have begun to notice.  The news, especially, has begun to notice.  "Face-for-Station here at one million Orion street, where a bizarre ooze has begun to, well Ooze! out from this apartment building, which only a week ago was promised to be taken care of personally by Local-Big-Blockhead.  Local-Big-Blockhead is planning a benefit dinner in order to raise the necessary funds for care-taking-ofness of the building.  Many Financites are expected to attend."

Of course, Finance and Local-Big-Blockhead don't give a hoot's hollow hailstorm about such-and-such a building.  But since they're supposedly on the case, everyone else is off it, and so no one has bothered to go upstairs.

Now, Anarchy, and her boyfriend Dont-Give-A-Fuck, who if you remember were in Africa, playing with children and teaching them how to read and write, had returned, and Dont-Give-A-Fuck, who, though he was known to certainly not give a fuck, missed his old buddy Sovereignty, and thus intended to pay him a visit, if not at least to hit with a hassle for spending all his time among adults.  Actually, they also had special news for Sovereignty.

It hardly took a second for Anarchy to figure out what was going on when they got to Sovereignty's building.  There was a huge crowd outside, behind a short metal fence, just observing; mesmerized, perhaps, by the steady oozing flow.  Anarchy had seen enough shit in her life to recognize that particular style of ooze.  She also caught the stench.

When they went upstairs, Anarchy didn't hesitate to break down the door.  She was certainly a pretty sort of lady, but built as fuck and ready to take you out.  And I must say, when She and her boyfriend walked into the room, Dont-Give-A-Fuck might have given a fuck.

Giving a fuck though he might have been about the tragic death of a friend, the couple had some reason for celebration.  Anarchy was, in fact, pregnant (the news they wanted to share with Sovereignty), and if one light in the family went out, at least a new one was turning on.

Around this time, too, Self-Emergence (Sovereignty's sister), and Locally-Organized-Ever-Changing-Flows (Sovereignty and Self-Emergence's half brother) returned from Brazil, just lit with excitement about the joy of living and the free exchange of ideas and information that they witnessed among dolphin communities.  Raunchy!  Riveting!  Rapturous!  What fantastic possibilities for Humanity!

Of course, meeting up with Anarchy and Dont-Give-A-Fuck, and hearing the news about Sovereignty wasn't particularly delighting, but it did occur to all parties involved that this was something of an opportunity.  It was something of a chance for creative innovation in the name of their cousin/brother/friend.  A chance to band together and embark on something fresh and exciting, encapsulating everything they had worked upon as individuals their entire life.  A chance to bring it all together to do good for Humanity.

At least that's what Sovereignty tried to do.  At least, that's how it was in the beginning, when Finance was still young, a sharp witted bulls-eye shooter, rocking slam-dunks and alley-oops, yet to be phased by the colossal failures and flaming-tire-pile of suppressed embarrassment and mis-allocation of energy that became the twentieth century.

No matter that.  This is twenty one.  Perhaps, like for American youth, our Civilization (considered in the totally arbitrary but curious aging system which began with the a man called Jesus (who was more probably a mushroom) and continues HERE, with us, today, a little over a month into our twenty first birthday) has finally become of age, and may officially, on a socially accepted and non-interfered with basis, get fuckin' shit-faced.

Consider, Briefly:

Dont-Give-A-Fuck loves to get shitfaced.  He does it quite frequently.  However, he is highly conscious about the matter, and will absolutely do no such thing as lose-his-freakin-mind-in-a-bowl-of-Yager-drenched-titties around the children.  And this is a respectable attitude.  Anarchy, on the hand, shitfaced though she might like to get, finds herself so revolted by Dont-Give-A-Fucks shit-dripping face that she hasn't had all that much interest in pursuing the matter for herself.
Self-Emergence and Locally-Organized-Ever-Changing-Flows weren't particularly interested in booze.  Sure, they indulged, but the stuff was more often a hindrance then it was a helper.  Besides, they were always drunk on each-others capacity for playful innovation and comic-cosmic-consciousness anyway, so booze didn't particularly oftenly occur to them.

End Consideration.

So, the four of them decided to clean up the mess.  While everyone else stood around outside, they took up their mop baskets and rubber gloves, and set to disinfecting Sovereignty's apartment, and giving his body a proper burial.

We don't have to go particularly into the details of this chore.  Suffice it to say that it is just awful.

But what will happen when the job is complete, when Sovereignty's death is made apparent, and the mess cleaned up?  What Geo-Political landscape will arise in his Wake?

Dont-Give-A-Fuck won't give a fuck what landscapes will arise in Sovereignty's wake.  And this is a respectable attitude.

But among Anarchy, Self-Emergence, and Locally-Organized-Ever-Changing flows, something of an extraordinary beauty is stirring.  It is something which has repeated itself many times over in the myriad-mayhem of universes past and future.  Something which defines the very mechanism
by which time unravels
by which information accumulates
by which the Whole-She-Bang comes eye to eye with herself
eyelids flittering
lovingly swiveling
day-dreaming stars to infinite.

And that something, dear people, is us, in our universal essence, in our capacity for the exhibition of complete and utter novelty through fantastic innovation and furious design right up against the very fringe of the thing.  And this is not just us.  This is the way of the very universe, which we are so deeply embedded as that it becomes practically annoying to even bother with the concept.  But that infinite capacity for meta-material creation and accelerated novelty, which lies within us all, is precisely what will raise us to our highest heights as we rise out of the ashes of the death of our most beloved Sovereignty.

Long live Self-Emergence and Locally-Organized-Ever-Changing-Flows.

(nobody gives a fuck about Don't-Give-A-Fuck)

Buckminster Fuller - A Guide to Spaceship Earth

So I'm currently reading Buckminster Fuller's "A Guide To Spaceship Earth."
It is absolutely fantastic.

Part of what captivates me so much about good ole' Bucky is his no-bullshit-tell-it-like-it-is-you-must-be-crazy-if-you-think-the-universe-is-not-profound attitude.  Let's take for instance the title of the document I am reading.

Consider our position.  Here we are, on a fantastic space-craft (that is really what the Earth is), ripping through seeming emptiness at thousands of miles per hour around our enormous mother-ship, the life-giving sun.  Not only are we on a space-ship zipping through space at such incredible speeds we can't even fathom them, we are on a space-ship that has been zipping through space at such incredible speeds we can't even fathom them for a duration (4 billion years!) that is probably even more difficult to fathom than the speed we're zipping at.  And to think, if it weren't for astronomy and geophysics, we wouldn't even know!!  Talk about a well engineered space-craft.  Can you even feel all that acceleration?

So that's one hell of a situation to be in.  I mean, it's a hell-enough-of a situation to be in even if you don't know about the cosmic magnitude of the circumstance, ie. that the unvierse has pooled its resources and energy budget into some exuberant structural and systems engineering on a small rock around a medium sized fire-ball somewhere along the outer spiral arm of this here Milky Way Galaxy.  But to come to terms with the facts of the matter, that HERE WE ARE, heirs of Universal Energy and Cosmic Becoming, zipping through god-knows-what-the-stuff-called-SPACE-really-is, on this fantastic Spaceship, is an altogether profound situation.

I mean what the fuck?!

Seriously.  What are we supposed to do?!  Here is this fantastically engineered space ship, equipped with full regenerative capacity and practically perennial propulsion, carrying on its own business of zipping and zapping while all sorts of myriad interesting things occur within the ships compartments and flight decks, virtually oblivious to the literally stellar circumstances of the craft they ride on.  And of course, for those that have become privy to at least the galactically local aspects of the circumstance, there isn't a guide or a manual or an instruction set or a help-forum to be found.  Wouldn't it be nice if there was an Earth-Overflow.org, hosted by advanced alien civilizations, offering help and advice and direction to us newbs in the experiment of intelligent life?

So seriously, what the fuck?!

What do we do?  Well, first of all, we must collect observations.  We must get to know what kind of ship we're on, what its engine consists of, how it operates, what its relation to the mother-ship is, and so on.  We have done a relatively good job of that.  Relative to whom?  Let's say the kangaroos and pythons.  I can only imagine that the Cetaceans have a better grip on the thing than we do, despite not being able to actually get a physical grip on anything, flippers and slippery skin and all.  But given that our spaceship is over 70% water, its conceivable that organisms exploring the water might have a better handle on the systematics of the thing than those confined to land.   Of course we're no longer confined to land, and now we fall freely from space, which is a fun-recreational-quasi-cosmic milestone that will probably lead to the death of many young adventurers tired of terrestrial-adrenaline-rushes and searching for the next kick, before it leads to productive exploration of the atmosphere and beyond.  I hope our parachute technology improves considerably, or that RedBull figures out how to actually engineer wings (I bet you it's coming, otherwise they might get sued for false advertising).

Anyways, the next step is more important.  We need to apply our observations.  If we sum the observations as such: "We are members of a species of organism which has evolved along with other organisms out of the abundant but finite resources of this planet, developing a novel form of generalized intelligence and visuo-kinesthetic capacities which allow us to manipulate and abstract upon the myriad resources of our space ship, providing many-fold opportunities for innovation and consumption.  However, we are growing at an exponential pace and ARE CERTAIN to over deplete the space-ships resources such that it will no longer be able to sustain its crew, who will be doomed to die a hollow death spinning thousands of miles per hour around a sun which can't provide fuel any more effectively than it has for the past few billion years", then we find that not only is our circumstance spectacular, it is somewhat dire, for, as any competent human being with internet access and an awareness of global events knows, we are living in a geo-political shit storm, where all of the above facts are, if not harshly denied, then blatantly ignored.

The shit-storm has everything to do with mentality.  As Bucky points out, much of it is based on thermodynamics, which established the concept entropy, which basically states that, left to itself, the organization of a system must decrease, that is, it must dissipate energy.  In other words, systems are running down.  Psychologically, this translates into the following: "If all systems are running down, then the Earth system is running down, and since there may not be enough to go around, there will certainly not be enough to go around in the future.  Thus we must protect our own and fight every man for himself.  Like in Nature, only the strong survive"

And so we have wars and republicans and democrats and trivial political flings filled with useless jabbering and basically the whole system has gotten up, exchanged its face with its ass, and sat down again.  Completely useless.  Of course, despite entropy being a universal concept, its implementation here is faulty, for while entropy runs systems down when they are LEFT TO THEIR OWN DEVICES (ie. lacking in innovative design and energy input), it may actually encourage self-emergence and novel organizational capacity in the context of innovative design and energy input.  Take the origin of life itself, for example!

So here then is our current position.  Geo-politically, we are Sisyphus pushing his rock perennially up the hill, and no matter what Camus has to say on the subject, we are getting nowhere, and certainly not enjoying ourselves.  On the other hand, armed with 1) an emerging theoretical understanding of the nature of non-equilibrium thermodynamics and self-emergence (where entropy runs systems up instead of down) and 2) an emerging practical understanding of open-source-cross-platform-free-exchange-of-ideas and self-emergent collaboration in the computer sciences, there may be some hope for us after all.

I think Bucky's vision is extraordinary.  Given enough human ingenuity, we can design ourselves out of any mess.  We need only to assemble and do.  It would also be helpful, of course, if the political system stopped interfering with every form of progress that emerges under (around?) the sun.  But in the open-source world, politics becomes irrelevant.  Border's fall down.  True power is put back in the hands of the people, so long as they are willing to share.  And with that infrastructure growing, at an accelerated pace, there may be hope for us astronauts after all.

Design will save the world.  Enjoy the rest of your flight here, on Spaceship Earth.