I've come around to Sam Harris' argument that free will is an illusion, but also still hold to my own long-held belief that it doesn't really matter either way. Generally people are still understanding of others who grow up through bad experiences and proceed to make bad choices, whether they believe those choices were an illusion or not.

Just finished reading Douglas Murray's book The Madness of Crowds.

I suspect that people whom are already keeping up with popular discourse and share its point of view wouldn't get much from it, since it's not going to say much that they don't already know about.

People whom could gain quite a lot from it will probably dismiss it as hateful garbage.

A certain subset of smug contrarians will dismiss it as not being edgy enough.

Generally, I found it to be an enjoyable read. It made me mad at times. It's a pretty concise summation of the ongoing derangement of western culture that gives plenty of examples from the last decade, but I would've appreciated more time devoted to exploring solutions.

Its closing points that we basically need to recognise what's going on and the consequences, be nice to each other and try to remove politics from discourse where possible is all stuff I agree with, but far easier said than done, and the book didn't offer much in the way of practical methods on this for individuals.

Did you know that Microsoft Word has functions to auto-generate paragraphs of lorem ipsum and random nonsense out of Word's documentation pages?

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Andrew Torba: endlessly blathers about creating an alternative economy for a purist Christian nation using half-assed stacks that he doesn't understand.

Terry Davis: writes a public domain operating system to talk to God, basically does wild stuff that baffles computer scientists.
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Do you remember the days when it didn't matter if your phone was kicking around in the same pocket as your keys?

I've said this several times before, but I still find myself reflecting on it: I am so very glad that I gave up video games.

When I reflect on how much time I used to spend playing games in earlier years (probably 8 - 15 hours/day as a teen, 5 - 10 hours/day in my twenties), I seriously regret not just the hours wasted but the devastating effects that it had on my mental, physical and developmental health, and the countless opportunities wasted.

I know there's plenty of studies that show some positive effects on the brain from playing video games regularly, but seriously, it's like saying that getting wiped out every second day can enhance your tolerance for alcohol. It took me far too long to realise that I had a problem but I'm grateful that at least, I eventually did, and gradually replaced them with other things that made my life better and not worse.

Nick James defines the law:

Respect the badge - he earned it with his blood

Fear the gun - your sentence may be death because...

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@freemo There is a deeper reason why the woke tend to believe absurdity and lie about people:The postmodern philosophy underlying their ideology is anti-realist

For most of us, the concept of “truth” doesn’t seem terribly complicated until we try to define it. Truth is… what’s true—this is actually the first definition for “truth,” paraphrasing a bit, in some dictionaries. Truth is that which is in accordance with reality is another. Philosophers understand that “truth” is a more complicated topic, and people in different schools of thought have different understandings of what truth is. Some, for example, hold that truths must be in some way transcendent of all human contingencies—that which absolutely holds for all people in all times (sometimes in all possible universes). Scientists tend to use a more pragmatic understanding (sometimes called “provisional truths”) that could be rendered as statements about reality upon which we can bet and reliably win. Most people, including nearly all scientists and many philosophers, generally agree that for something to be a “truth” means its having something to do with accurately describing reality.

The postmodern school of thought, which profoundly informs the Theory of Critical Social Justice, however, does not see truth this way. In fact, it is openly hostile and radically skeptical of these understandings of truth, which might generally be described as being “realist” in orientation because they see some correspondence between truth and reality. Postmodernism is generally anti-realist in orientation, meaning that it does not necessarily see a connection between “truths” and reality. Truths might happen to describe reality, say as the Earth and the Sun describing a dynamic system in which both travel along eliptical orbits around their common center of mass (which is inside the Sun), or not, say as the Sun going around the Earth. Under postmodern thought, both of these understandings are “true” in the cultures that consider them true. That is, postmodern thought sees truth as entirely a matter of human (social) contingencies. This is what the American postmodern philosopher Richard Rorty meant when he wrote, “We need to make a distinction between the claim that the world is out there and the claim that the truth is out there.”

Truths, in postmodern Theory, are socially validated statements about reality, which means that they are, ultimately, products of not just the cultures that produce them but of power within those cultures. The French postmodern philosopher Michel Foucault described this as power-knowledge, insisting that knowledge claims (truths) are ultimately only expressions of power. This sound strange, but the logic is accessible. What is considered true is decided by people by some social process of validation, the thinking goes, so “truth” is a social and political status conferred to certain ideas, which is then reinforced by their acceptance as true. Simultaneously, “truths” confer (political) power, as “knowledge is power” implies, because if it is accepted that a proposition is true, then people who accept it as such will behave accordingly. Thus, Foucault Theorized that “truths” are socially constructed by the systems of power (and the powerful within them) in society and then used to dominate, particularly in the attempt to maintain their power and exclusive status (see also, hegemony, episteme, and biopower).

Most of this anti-realist, political understanding of truth (and knowledge) has been imported more or less intact into Critical Social Justice.

In Critical Social Justice, “truth” is still considered culturally contingent, but because of the strong influence of identity politics at the core of the Critical Social Justice project (which could be said to use critical and postmodern Theories to do identity politics – see also intersectionality and positionality), the relevant cultures are ones rooted in various identities Theorized to be “minoritized.” Thus, “knowledge” and “truth” as we generally conceive of them are considered shorthand for “cis, straight, white, Western, male knowledge” or “cis, straight, white, Western, male truth” (see also, white science, white mathematics, and white empiricism, and also feminist empiricism), which are just one way of knowing. In fact, they’re a particularly bad one because these dominant groups not at all aware of their self-serving biases or limitations of their own knowing system (see also, internalized dominance and meritocracy).

Thus, on the other hand, Critical Social Justice generally believes in cultural knowledges (e.g., racial knowledge) that have been marginalized by “dominant discourses,” which are deemed to be straight, white, male, able-bodied, thin, Western, Eurocentric, etc. These are believed to arise because different identity-based cultures have different ways of knowing (epistemologies) thus recognize different knowledges, and dominant ways of knowing (e.g., science, reason, logic, dialectic – see also, master’s tools) are believed to have utilized their greater power to unjustly exclude them from the range of “acceptable” ways of knowing and knowledges (see also, epistemic injustice, epistemic oppression, and epistemic violence).

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RT @leahvelleman@twitter.com

Honestly, a lot of free software is free as in *piano.*

It's right there. Nobody is stopping you. You could totally spend hours of painstaking labor getting it carried up your front steps or built from a clusterfuck of diffs and patches or whatever. Everyone knows you won't.

🐦🔗: twitter.com/leahvelleman/statu

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The future of crypto in US is at risk.

The SEC are suing us and saying LBC is a security - it’s not!



Spent an hour this evening clearing disk space on my Windows partition and shrinking it to make way for Elementary OS, installed it, configured it, decided I liked Manjaro better, installed Manjaro over EOS, configured it, decided I didn't like it, spent next hour restoring Windows bootloader and extending Windows partition again.

I had about four hours total available this weekend to do something that wasn't work or chores and this is how I spent it. Tf am I doing with my life.

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#Windows10 File Explorer gets a facelift. Looks good! #windows

The Verge: Windows 10 is getting new File Explorer icons as part of a visual overhaul.

@hund I think the general sentiment is just that he's not the best public face for the FSF anymore - as a whole they tend to have some image problems to the layman, being characterised as out-of-touch, a bit too hardcore with the ideology, unable to attract interest from an audience that's not already familiar with free software etc.

For a lot of reasons it's just not a good idea to have an unkempt-looking, strange fellow with questionable public relations skills as the public face of your organisation and having him back looks to other people like the FSF exists more in the past than it does in the future.

That is not to say that RMS has nothing more to offer or that his contributions to date aren't incredibly important, but he's better off as a respected elder voice than a primary decision maker going forward.

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What do you call a guy with his dick in a bowl of cashews? 

Fucking nuts

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After months of stalling, Google finally revealed how much personal data they collect in Chrome and the Google app. No wonder they wanted to hide it.

Spying on users has nothing to do with building a great web browser or search engine. We would know (our app is both in one).

Original tweet : twitter.com/DuckDuckGo/status/

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The work @elementary contributors are doing on their GTK stylesheet, and supporting a system-wide dark mode, is really great. I especially like these accent colours! I’m looking forward to trying it again.

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#Mastodontip: While no one can do a #facebook or #twitter move and permanently ban you from #mastodon because of its #decentralized nature, instances do go down, and instance moderators do moderate. It is always a good idea to keep an up-to-date #backup of the list of your #Follows, #Lists, your #blocks and your #bookmarks. You can do this by going to Preferences > Import and Export. It will save you a lot of time when moving to a new #instance. 🙂

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