Posted from Tokyo, first time in Japan, which is awesome so far. An open society without being stupid about it would be the NRx fast-summary (sound, but limited). It was vastly easier to get into Japan than the United States.
Staying in the AirB&B equivalent of a coffin-hotel, but the situation is good (in Ueno).
Civilization level meets high expectations, and friendliness level exceeds them.
Much more English signage than expected, and the inherited Chinese characters have preserved their meanings, if not their phonological values, so the urban landscape is surprisingly intelligible.
Micro-artisan businesses of extreme excellence, typically run by elderly people, are everywhere.
Automation dialed up to eleven.
Yet to see a single over-weight person (which out-performs the stereotype).
Thing likely to get highly fragmented over the next couple of weeks, and especially over the next couple of days. Will aim to maintain a thread of continuity.
In the meantime, here‘s my favorite Christmas Song (embedded version).
Try not to do anything too radically evil in the comment threads, and to be patient if spam-filter clearance is slower than usual.
Yes, we’re in semi-comatose maintenance mode, but the three millionth visit merits some kind of acknowledgement. Thanks to everyone — however annoying — who’s keeping the nightmare alive (or at least undead).
(Open thread — bring your own links edition)
Consumed by New York and AI threat. (Will talk about it later).
July 20, 2016admin
FILED UNDER :Chaos
TAGGED WITH :Admin
Robert Kaplan on The Coming Anarchy (February, 1994), in prophetic mode:
West Africa is becoming the symbol of worldwide demographic, environmental, and societal stress, in which criminal anarchy emerges as the real ‘strategic’ danger. Disease, overpopulation, unprovoked crime, scarcity of resources, refugee migrations, the increasing erosion of nation-states and international borders, and the empowerment of private armies, security firms, and international drug cartels are now most tellingly demonstrated through a West African prism. West Africa provides an appropriate introduction to the issues, often extremely unpleasant to discuss, that will soon confront our civilization. To remap the political earth the way it will be a few decades hence — as I intend to do in this article — I find I must begin with West Africa. …
Holds up well from the XS PoV.
(Used as a promotion device for the latest Outsideness NCR&P course, actually beginning next Sunday (although it currently seems a little demotically-challenged)). Does this seem like pan-handling? Guess it is, edgy 2016 Internet-economy style.
As anticipated, the Chaos Patch shift to Tuesday’s looks unavoidable. Sometimes Chaos bites back.
Turns out Xenosystems traffic was overloading the web-host account, so it’s been upgraded ($$$ *sigh*). Fingers crossed, the black-outs should be finished now. Apologies for the interruption of service, and thanks for causing the problem. (Top two days of traffic in the history of the blog happened just before the crash.)
I’m in Huangshan until Monday, with perhaps slightly patchier connectivity for the next couple of days, but it doesn’t look as if there’s much of an excuse for dropping off the grid. Going up the mountain tomorrow. Will spend the ascent thinking of something to talk about.
Trolls, don’t let the sun set on you here.
Last and most radically-degenerated Yule Chaos Patch. Back in Shanghai a couple of hours ago, with no idea at all what is happening in the world or (roughly equivalently) on the Internet. Feel free to fill in any of the most absurd gaps.
Here are a couple of very recent discussion points: Refragmentation. The advantages of repressive state religion.
Spare a thought for the numinous, the thing-in-itself, and the Great Filter tomorrow. If they all flow together, you can always have another drink.
(I’d say something nice, but that would trash the brand.)
This is here for the AoS links.
I’ve been meaning to do a house-keeping post on commenting, and these remarks say most of what’s necessary. It obviously applies mostly to people who are the least likely to read it, so it’s necessary to be emphatic about the extreme appreciation I have for the core commentariat here, as well as many irregular commentators who make the blog what it is. That said, I’ve been acutely aware of my tendency to excessive liberalism in blog management recently, and also killing / gibbeting more abusive idiots than usual. That’s not going to stop, and will quite probably intensify.
As Ace remarks:
Your problems are your problems, and your problems alone; your emotional problems and angry outbursts will no longer be acceptable blog fodder here. […] If this blog is too fast for you — if people making arguments you might disagree with is just too painful for your mind to take — well, there’s lots of other blogs on the web; I suggest you try one that’s more your speed. […] We here are pretty good commenters, and pretty good at discussion and at repartee; we’re not going to be dragged down to a sub-moron level simply because that’s the only level at which a sub-moron feels he can participate … […] These are the rules, and they will be enforced. Adjust your behavior accordingly.
“Disneyland with the death penalty” is the administrative model.