We're in for a wild ride. Exponentially accelerating technological, cultural, and socioeconomic evolution means that every year will see more developments than the previous one. More change will happen between now and 2050 than during all of humanity's past. Let's explore the 21st century and ride this historic wave of planetary transition with a confident open mind.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Libyan Civil War: What Would Lincoln Do?

As the large scale humiliation of NATO and their mercenary "National Transitional Council" continues into the fifth month, Abraham Lincoln sits down for a public meeting with Colonel Gaddafi to talk war and peace.

 Muammar Gaddafi: Most warm welcome Mr. Lincoln and thank you for being here. Always a pleasure to have guests who managed to successfully resolve mass civil disturbances and earn history's honor.

Most Libyans are familiar with your work. For those who aren't, Mr. Lincoln effectively suppressed a number of rebellious provinces in his home country and thwarted European desire to split USA into parts. Thus, the "second American revolution" as it was dubbed in foreign press never materialized after 5 years of bitter struggle.

Can you tell me what's the key dynamic to watch out for when dealing with a fluid situation like this?

 Abraham Lincoln: Pleasure to be here. Well, the first thing, and probably the most difficult thing, is the initial shock. The sense of betrayal and exasperation. One's ego takes a massive hit you know? How did it come to this? What % was my fault and so on and so on.

The first few weeks, I mean, we had such losses.. defections.. entire states you know? Some old friends and business backers were saying to cut our losses. In such environment it is essential to not become too psychologically paralyzed. One must surround oneself with optimists.

As they say, perception is everything and I remember one general telling me that, "it is essential to invest in perception management early in the game. No other seed grows as much". Since if th..

MG: Since humans are animals and that if loyalist forces hold on long enough in the beginning, the act of fighting and risking life for the regime will modify consciousness via behavioral conditioning. By acting "loyalist" they thus become loyalist as is the case with any other task. Plus this ego construction takes place in environment where lots of adrenaline is released thus burning the newly constructed identity into memory.

AL: Exactly. Mind you the rebels of course undergo same process yet without the benefit of formal military training, industrial capacity, coherent economic promises, absolute domestic support, and well coordinated logistics. Their new ego construction is one of losers. And they are currently dying and getting wounded at such a rate that there wont be too many survivors with Malcolm Gladwell's 10,000 hour rule under their belt to train new arrivals. In case of Libya and the extraordinary international media propaganda offensive against it..

MG: Thicker and quicker established informational bubble than even those imposed on Yugoslavia or Iraq.

AL: was remarkable how rapidly public opinion in NATO countries changed concerning the rebels. Considering the supposed openness of the Internet, it is amazing how airtight the cloud of lies has been. Yet even with mainstream aggressor press retelling the start of the hostilities not as foreign funded civilian looting of Libyan army bases..

MG: Where soldiers guarding the base naturally shot those who tried breaking in with bulldozers to steal weapons..

AL: Right. Imagine! 1000 secession supporters try to loot a Union base, some get shot, and the foreign press retells it as if soldiers attacked a peaceful demonstration! Anyway, the French, British, American publics felt that something wasn't right.

MG: "The city of Misrata, population half a million, is under brutal siege and has been indiscriminately bombarded by Gaddafi forces for months". Yet only 700 rebel civilians died there! Perhaps NATO definition of indiscriminate shelling has morphed over time but I literally couldn't stop laughing at such slander. They don't realize how much we were holding ourselves back and still do.

AL:  Well the casualty discrepancies were some of the more obvious clues along with such nonsense as allegations of rape as weapon, loyalist supporters not really being supporters at all but doing so due to "threats" against their families, etc. All the standard informational war tricks we've seen before. Yet the most important fact remains that without NATO intervention all of Benghazi and Tobruk would have fallen to Tripoli's armor.

MG: Returning to perception management for a moment. In your opinion, inability of rebels to settle into attrition stalemate independently has planted seeds of doubt throughout eastern provinces early on. This sapped morale which affected everything ranging from volunteer recruitment drives, civil service function, etc.

AL: Yes, considering NATO's history of losing and backstabbing, it was vital for the traitors to make early autonomous victories, victories that never materialized. They were however able to take advantage of government troops not being willing to use too much violence against their brethren, the civilian population, in the very beginning. Even when they were under attack. In other words, we're seeing Western projection onto an enemy of everything they do and plan to do while an absolute informational reversal of how the conflict began is presented.

MG: Your situation in 1860s was different. The rebels had major victories, even tried to invade I believe?

AL: Yes. It was terrible. Fortunately for us, we didn't have air superiority to worry about. One thing I found interesting in a civil war like this is when you reoccupy the area. The insurgency potential is limited since a large chunk of the rebel population never supported separation or feels like they deserve whatever happens once the initial rebellion attempt fails. Even after the civil war dragged on for years, there was almost no insurgency against the occupiers afterwards.

MG: The group of bandits and carpetbaggers calling itself a government in Benghazi is trying to purge people still loyal to me.  You've heard about the officially condoned vigilante justice going on as we speak, the racist attacks against citizens from southern parts of the country under cover of "fighting Gaddafi's foreign mercenaries", the climate of fear, midnight raids?

AL: Yes. A total victory for the rebels would unleash such mismanagement it'd make the Orange revolution in Ukraine seem like a walk in th...

MG: They'll be fighting like dogs over petrol and foreign aid. It has already been decided that 30 billion dollars worth of frozen tax payer's assets are to be given to the kangaroo leadership of Benghazi. They may begin to cannibalize each other even as the fighting with me goes on.

AL: Before I forget, congratulations on withstanding NATO punishment longer than Yugoslavia did. Thousands of sorties is no small..

MG: Thank you. In a way, I have it easier since they are using a third of the planes than they did against Milosovic and aren't targeting vital infrastructure as much.

AL: Right, it'd be absurd for them to mass murder civilians by destroying water and sewage infrastructure, electrical stations, bridges, etc and claim that they're protecting civilians. Especially in the middle of a North African summer. In Yugoslavia's case, NATO blatantly sided with welfare of one ethnic group over the other. NATO has dug its own prestige a grave by using this wording and pretext for the current aggression. They desperately want to break the will of the western population but can't. Violations of the UN resolution such as French weapons drops thus occur rather gradually.

You should have invested in more inflatable tanks. The bomb price versus inflatable decoy price differentials are amazing. They got inflatables that even have a heat signature..

MG: I'm aware of the leaps in decoy tech but shifting gears for a second, how would you handle this?

AL: Serbia, Sudan style splitting of countries seems to be the it thing currently. You must convey to the people that NATO wants to put bases in east Libya to apply additional pressure on Egypt and guide its revolutionary transformation. I would first promise something to the easterners to undermine their morale. The equivalent of freei..

MG: Did it, constitutional reform and such. I can't get through to these people. They are actually flying a flag of a deposed monarchy! I'm dealing with these Berber yokels in the mountains to the west, our version of the Chechens I'm afraid. But for educated urban dwellers to wave it.. shameful.

AL: I mean to promise something tangible like powerful and eyebrow raising new welfare state provisions. The rebels can't counter it considering their neoliberal foreign sponsors and cheerleaders.

MG: Interesting. Like "land, peace, bread" type easy to absorb memes?

AL: Yes. Control over meme flows is essential.

MG: Things have changed since I took office..

AL: At such young age too. I believe you were younger than Castro when you took such an enormous territory, considering the population that is?

MG: And they haven't forgiven since. You know, there was that early shock you spoke off. But then I felt alive for the first time in a while. The old "game mode" was back. One always feels like one can almost hack anything, defeat anything, no matter the odds. That if one can just uncover one weak point, the exploitation of it would create ripple effects leading to victory.

AL: Yes which is why they hope to decapitate the Tripoli government. I'm glad Confederates didn't send waves of hitmen against me early on, we didn't really have the bodyguard culture back then.. but that's ancient history.

MG: We're about out of time. Thank you for joining me. Next week I will talk to president Mahinda Rajapaksa who recently concluded a decades long civil war in Sri Lanka. We'll be talking of mending old wounds and winning hearts and minds.

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Sunday, July 3, 2011

Evolution of Formal Attire

Now that the tie is gradually disappearing like its bow tie predecessor, lets briefly recap how ruling Homo sapiens clothed themselves to stand out over the ages.

Neolithic period: (keep it practical stupid)

Here we see the dominant apes go for efficiency and comfort for the most part. There are a small number of delicately carved items from a hard to carve material to show off. The headpiece has phallic qualities to a degree or has parts of very male animals. It is possible that body parts of slain competitors are also worn (like ears were by soldiers in Vietnam). The primary tool to clutch also has a lot of work done on it.

Ancient 1 (We're still keeping it practical and simple since we got so much power/manners that we don't need to show off visually. We're confident in our cultured selves, period.)

Here we see relatively simple clean garments with a few small hard to carve items strategically placed on paws, necks, and heads. It is to be noted that massive phallic headdress returns when it's time to head out to war. In this regard, formal attire reverts to neolithic for PR purposes when needed. Comfort is essential.

Ancient 2 ( We're beyond practical since we don't do anything anymore and have become flamboyantly decadent. Our domain is stable and our minions keep bringing us weird things to put on. We're here to visually impress and party with visitors, Lady Gaga style.)

Here the body is saturated with harder to carve (compared to bone and rock) gold objects and elaborate paint patterns. Tacky add-ons may include things like little skulls on sandals, silver penises on ears, etc

Feudal practical (Unfortunately, we now have to work to rule :( .. and that means attending battlefields and even participating! Which means moving around constantly but this time there's totally connected carved metal to protect us.)

Notice that we're now at the absolute usefulness level with only some neolithic type feathers on helmets and bits of statues and gold integrated into armor and weaponry. Although it looks like it may be difficult to move in such attire, the best made one was remarkably flexible and even allowed some sprinting.

Late feudal impractical (Finally things have stabilized/centralized and only our top mercenary minions wear practical armor. We can now revert to impressing visitors full time and only wearing armor for parades and to appear manly for peasant hordes.)


The heavy elaborate Gaga-esque dress restricts fast movements due to profuse sweating that would result. To avoid sweating (and thus being miserable) one moves slowly, carefully, and deliberately. The resulting visual PR effect is one of almost inhuman grace and thoughtfulness even if there isn't any. Clothing oneself is aided by minions.

(Sidenote: Crown achieves the same effect yet can damage the spinal neck discs over time. Earlier practical crowns were light. Later larger ones made it difficult to make rapid head movements. Skull had to swivel slowly and chin needed to stay up giving an extra proud and deliberate look. Words had to be spoken carefully in an even tone. Thus it served same restrictive function as the dress itself during very special occasions).

Early capitalist (We increasingly rule even though kings are nominally in charge now, our numbers are growing, and we finally got endless silk from Asia! We can thus get comfortable like the kings do.)

Constantly having extra clean silk stockings horrifies the peasants. Early mass scale consumerism of expensive objects that one will nevertheless get rid of periodically. Fluffy white silk/cotton shirts blatantly imitate a bit of the royal dress without having an actual cape! Top to bottom hierarchical aping within the herd is the most pronounced. Previously kingly objects can now be readily made in relatively large batches if one can afford the materials and specialist prole makers.

Late capitalist neofeudal (Unfortunately, fluffy shirts and stockings are now considered too feminine. We need to appear tidy yet male and we've developed a need for ritual. If we can't have gold chains and animal skulls on our necks we'll still find some sort of thing to put close to the Adam's apple. We clothe ourselves now.)

Notice that bourgeois consumerism is ritualized via daily bow tie and tie application. The same fashion processes that have long affected housewives now affect the men. Consumerist rituals now include shaving to go with neck tying of various sorts. This style barely changes until the death of capitalism in the 21st century.

State capitalist (Since the bourgeois became decadent and effeminate, we were able to overpower them and take everything from them.  It was long and hard and we had to get our hands dirty. Our clothing will reflect the militancy of the mind and that we're "first among equals".)

Notice the green colors refers to the vicious military nature of the struggle for power and leadership of industrial labor armies. Also see how the form of dress reverts to Ancient 1 since the new rulers are so confident of their power and wit that they don't need brand new state capitalist fashion to show it off. Some hard to carve precious metal items called medals may be placed close to the heart. Bullet proof Kevlar may be added underneath during public engagements.

Post-capitalist technocratic  (We don't care about anything except comfort and utility. Fashion is a remnant of the old inequality emphasizing regimes and psychological pathology. Fashion perhaps plays a role in mating rituals which are kept separate from official public congregations.)

Notice the light thin nanofabric is once again similar to Ancient 1 yet can change color and shape as needed. For the most part, the silkish fabric remains white (since dirt molecules are expelled by the fabric continuously) to PR purity. It keeps the body at same room temperature even when one lays on the snow or walks in hot desert. The attire monitors vital signals of the body and releases narcotics into the system depending on what state its in. Heavier nano armor defensive properties may be added. The rulers may add a holographic feather to the head for old time's sake.

Posthuman (to be decided)

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