‘Smoking Gun’ Disability Data Reveals Alarming Health Crisis of the Employed

“If you’re wondering why there are ‘help wanted’ signs, this is it.”

Three million more unfortunate souls are now among the U.S. disabled population than two years ago. What were 29.85 million people within this cohort in January 2021 soared to 32.87 million in December 2022.

What’s interesting is that the trend was overall heading downward in 2020. It wasn’t until 2021 that the disability numbers took a significant turn for the worse — increasing by 10%.

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Lots of information on the linked page, including videos and graphs. ABN

Making Sense of the Mental Universe

Try reading the following paper while keeping the Mind Only Buddhist interpretation of our world in mind.

In 2005, an essay was published in Nature asserting that the universe is mental and that we must abandon our tendency to conceptualize observations as things. Since then, experiments have confi rmed that — as predicted by quantum mechanics — reality is contextual, which contradicts at least intuitive formulations of realism and corroborates the hypothesis of a mental universe. Yet, to give this hypothesis a coherent rendering, one must explain how a mental universe can — at least in principle — accommodate (a) our experience of ourselves as distinct individual minds sharing a world beyond the control of our volition; and (b) the empirical fact that this world is contextual despite being seemingly shared. By combining a modern formulation of the ontology of idealism with the relational interpretation of quantum mechanics, the present paper attempts to provide a viable explanatory framework for both points. In the process of doing so, the paper also addresses key philosophical qualms of the relational interpretation. (Making Sense of the Mental Universe)

Edit: The explanation offered in the linked paper, without saying as much, provides a very reasonable way to see Buddhist rebirth occurring without there being any soul or pudgala being reborn. Nothing need fly out of the body or transmigrate anywhere.

Instead, the classic Buddhist description of karma alone giving rise to a new life works perfectly. Rather than conceive of ourselves as fundamentally material beings, we can conceive of our personal individuality as being (a part of a “mental universe”) enclosed within a Markov blanket.

If there is still karma, a new Markov blanket or bodily form will be “reborn” or rearise after the extinction of its prior existence. In Kastrup’s way of putting it, our physical bodies are themselves Markov blankets causing or allowing us to arise as forms separate from the wholeness of the mental universe.

I suppose we might venture to say that enlightenment occurs when the karma, or reason for our separation in a Markov blanket, is gone and “we” remain the whole (of the mental universe) without being reborn (in a body).

first posted JANUARY 29, 2020

Breaking: SARS-CoV-2 Spike found in bacteria samples taken from China, 2019

Now there is more mystery regarding the history of SARS-CoV-2 before the pandemic in case of China.

Previously, SARS-CoV-2 genomic sequences corresponding to both A,B lineage as well as USA-WA-1 was found within samples of Antarctic soil that were extracted and sent for sequencing in December 2019, 101 runs prior to the first sequencing of samples taken from “viral pneumonia of unknown etiology” patients from the Huanan seafood market by the Wuhan Institute of Virology. It appeared that these samples were not the only samples that were taken from China in 2019, that contained sequences derived from SARS-CoV-2 and were decidedly NOT linked to the wildlife trade in any way.

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‘AI will take 20% of all jobs within five YEARS’: Experts explain how bots like ChatGPT will dominate the labor market

The launch of ChatGPT, an artificial intelligence chatbot, late last year marked a new era in AI – and sparked widespread fears over the effect of artificial intelligence on the job market.

Its abilities to write poems, screenplays, take exams and simulate entire chat rooms have led some to suggest it could rapidly take over jobs in customer service, copywriting and even the legal profession.

Microsoft invested $10 billion in ChatGPT and said that the technology will change how people interact with computers.

‘I believe that ChatGPT could replace 20 percent of the workforce as is,’ AI expert Richard DeVere, Head of Social Engineering for Ultima, told DailyMail.com.

‘ChatGPT is no fad – it’s a new technological revolution.

‘Robots aren’t necessarily coming for your jobs, but a human with a robot will do. 

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In principle, I believe any improvement in communication, information handling, inference, or clarity of response is a good thing. We’ll see how this turns out. ABN

The brain as a guessing machine

A new approach to the study of mental disorder—called computational psychiatry—uses Bayesian inference to explain where people with problems are going wrong.

Bayesian inference is a method of statistical reasoning used to understand the probability of a hypothesis and how to update it as conditions change.

The idea is that people with schizophrenia, for example, are doing a bad job at inferring the reasonableness of their hypotheses. This happens because schizophrenics seem to be less likely to put enough weight on prior experience (a factor in Bayesian reasoning).

Somewhat similarly, “sensory information takes priority [over previous experience] in people with autism.” (Bayesian reasoning implicated in some mental disorders)

Distorted calculations — and the altered versions of the world they create — may also play a role in depression and anxiety, some researchers think. While suffering from depression, people may hold on to distorted priors — believing that good things are out of reach, for instance. And people with high anxiety can have trouble making good choices in a volatile environment (Ibid)

The key problem with autism and anxiety is people with these conditions have trouble updating their expectations—a major component of Bayesian reasoning—and thus make many mistakes.

These mistakes, of course, compound and further increase a sense of anxiety or alienation.

Like several of the researches quoted in the linked article, I find this computational approach exciting.

It speaks to me because it confirms a core hypothesis of FIML practice—that all people make many, significant inferential mistakes during virtually all acts of communication.

In this respect, I believe all people are mentally disordered, not just the ones who are suffering the most.

I think a Bayesian thought experiment can all but prove my point:

What are the odds that you will correctly infer the mental state(s) of anyone you speak with? What are the odds that they will correctly infer your mental state(s)?

In a formal setting, both of you will do well enough if the inferring is kept within whatever the formal boundaries are. But that is all you will be able to infer reasonably well.

In the far more important realm of intimate interpersonal communication, the odds that either party is making correct inferences go down significantly.

If we do not know someone’s mental state, we cannot know why they have communicated as they have. If our inferences about them are based on such questionable data, we are bound to make many more mistakes about them.

first posted MAY 15, 2016

Is Christianity a Hoax? | Dr E Michael Jones vs Adam Green

I watched more than half of this last night. It is quite interesting for the first one-third or so, especially if Green’s ideas are new to you. Around the halfway point it declines into a spat over the existence of God. I stopped five minutes into that; may watch more of it later because the topic is interesting. Better to stage this kind of thing as a discussion rather than a debate. ABN

Titan’s Surface Organics Surpass Oil Reserves on Earth

Saturn’s orange moon Titan has hundreds of times more liquid hydrocarbons than all the known oil and natural gas reserves on Earth, according to new data from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft. The hydrocarbons rain from the sky, collecting in vast deposits that form lakes and dunes.

The new findings from the study led by Ralph Lorenz, Cassini radar team member from the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Md., are reported in the Jan. 29 issue of the Geophysical Research Letters.

“Titan is just covered in carbon-bearing material — it’s a giant factory of organic chemicals,” said Lorenz. “This vast carbon inventory is an important window into the geology and climate history of Titan.”

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Apparently not from buried algae and plankton. ABN

A Volcano Eruption Can Emit More CO2 Than All Humanity. Why Worry?

We should care about global warming and global cooling, no matter the cause.

But that does not mean we should make draconian changes in global economic, political and energy policies based upon the unproven hypothesis that human emissions of CO2 are leading to apocalyptic global warming. There simply is NO proof of this hypothesis.

It is complete supposition, despite what the CAGW alarmists, climate industry investors, globalists and radical environmentalists claim. Millions of individuals have already been severely harmed (or even killed) because of some of the irresponsible actions engaged in by governments “fighting” CO2 emissions. But billions could potentially be harmed if all of the more drastic measures proposed by alarmists are enacted.

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A theory of FIML

FIML is both a practice and a theory. The practice  is roughly described here and in other posts on this website.

The theory states (also roughly) that successful practice of FIML will:

  • Greatly improve communication between participating partners
  • Greatly reduce or eliminate mistaken interpretations (neuroses) between partners
  • Give partners insights into the dynamic structures of their personalities
  • Lead to much greater appreciation of the dynamic linguistic/communicative nature of the personality

These results are achieved because:

  • FIML practice is based on real data agreed upon by both partners
  • FIML practice stops neurotic responses before they get out of control
  • FIML practice allows both partners to understand each other’s neuroses while eliminating them
  • FIML practice establishes a shared objective standard between partners
  • This standard can be checked, confirmed, changed, or upgraded as often as is needed

FIML practice will also:

  • Show partners how their personalities function while alone and together
  • Lead to a much greater appreciation of how mistaken interpretations that occur at discreet times can and often do lead to (or reveal) ongoing mistaken interpretations (neuroses)

FIML practice eliminates neuroses because it shows individuals, through real data, that their (neurotic) interpretation(s) of their partner are mistaken. This reduction of neurosis between partners probably will be generalizable to other situations and people, thus resulting a less neurotic individual overall.

Neurosis is defined here to mean a mistaken interpretation or an ongoing mistaken interpretation.

The theory of FIML can be falsified or shown to be wrong by having a reasonably large number of suitable people learn FIML practice, do it and fail to gain the aforementioned results.

FIML practice will not be suitable for everyone. It requires that partners have a strong interest in each other; a strong sense of caring for each other; an interest in language and communication; the ability to see themselves objectively; the ability to view their use of language objectively; fairly good self-control; enough time to do the practice regularly.

first posted DECEMBER 15, 2011