06 January, 2019

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Welcome to SHAPE


Special Issue 62: Change






This new special issue features a single essay on the crucial subject of Changing Reality, and our general inadequacy in dealing with it.

Even in the obviously mutable structures we erect, from houses to cities and societies, we fail to notice, address and understand the change taking place. And when we look at the natural world around us, we have even greater difficulty, deferring instead to eternal gods or unchanging Laws of Nature, ignoring the incessant flux, its rhythms and its tempos...


05 January, 2019

Real Holism?





What is Holism? It isn't the usual New Age pseudoscience which unfortunately co-opts the term. 

Having commenced reading a book upon supposedly "Holistic Science", I was surprised how very differently, and with very different conclusions to my own, in the way that very idea of Holism was handled. 



The Holistic Inspiration of Physics: The Underground History of Electromagnetic Theory by Val Dusek


For, my emphasis strongly contrasted Holism with what I term Plurality as crucial-and-opposite premises, in considering the World, whereas, at least in his introduction, the writer contrasted it with what he termed "Atomism" and Reductionism (or even "Mechanism"). His emphases upon top-down-causality as distinct from bottom-up-causality seemed to primarily define his Holist Stance.

Yet, in all Causality, it has to be Properties that primarily enable explanations of phenomena: and though this does seem easier in bottom-up explanations, and therefore naturally-selective of subscribing to Reductionism, the universal resilience of Stabilities, regularly overcoming challenges from below to nevertheless persist, also invokes credit to some sort of apparently "top-down" causality too.

But, the absence of any reference whatsoever to Plurality does not bode well, and I will explain why this is so.

Plurality actually enabled Abstraction for the very first time, to be greatly and powerfully extended into wholly new areas. It happened when the ancient Greeks invented Euclidian Geometry, and thereafter, the much larger discipline of Mathematics, that it begat. It was simultaneously a Great Enabling Revolution, and yet also at the same time, a potentially-destructive "time-bomb" to possible further developments at a later and more advanced stage in Mankind's intellectual thinking.

For, Abstractions don't exist as such, physically: they are aspects of Reality that can be extracted and discussed, because they reflect something important in what they are aspects of, while also being common to a wide range of other physically existing things too.
Number is the clearest example!

NOTE: But, as we will see, the absence of even a mention of all this, and the emphasis upon "top down drivers" opens the door implicitly, without direct mention, to Principles like that of Plurality, as well as to the allocation of Cause to Form - to mathematical versions applied to physical relationships too.

Mathematics is entirely Pluralist!

But, the Greeks took Abstraction further, to include descriptors of Shape, Position and Direction. And, they soon were able to relate these into "always true" Rules: which they established into a system of relationships, between these, amounting to a kind of Spatial Reasoning.

But, only of fixed Abstractions.





Now, though quantitative features can vary, the Principle of Plurality insists that the formal Abstractions and their inter-relationships don't: they cannot change qualitatively.

And, this limits Mathematics to only those areas where such will always be the case.

But, and this is very important, the success of Mathematics caused the Greeks to extend Plurality to general Reasoning too, delivering Formal Logic, and later to Science also - and this limitation to everywhere in these contexts is most certainly NOT legitimate!

Indeed Pluralist disciplines cannot deal with qualitative developments of any kind: they can only apply if the situations are either naturally or artificially kept rigidly-unchanging in the "essential" qualities involved, and only vary quantitatively.

Clearly, not even mentioning this crucial ground in his introduction does not bode at all well for where he personally will be taking the important topic.

In addition, many other features, that are often mentioned, also need explanations.

For example, how on earth can top-down causality work?

It cannot be the same as the role in bottom-up, as instead of many-to-one causalities - simply adding-up, many-to-many cannot be so easily dealt with, for the actual containing Context is also being changed, and even multiple Recursions via a series of bottom-up caused changing Contexts, can often be unavoidable. Top-down causalities therefore often drift into one-to-many restrictions such as Principles or Iron Laws from "on high"!

NOTE:this criticism also applies, though less often, in bottom up causality, but not most of the time, though when it does occur, the established relation being assumed no longer pertains, and a partially or even a wholly different one is usually required.

We call the situation when-Plurality-pertains as the state of Stability, and, when it irretrievably fails, as that of Instability!

NOTE:That Science, as-originally-conceived-of, after the Greek Revolution, could only be relied upon, by successfully imposing the most extensive and rigid maintaining of the Context - tailor-made for a single aimed-for Law!

Nevertheless, with the rapidly increasing skills of the scientists and technologists in both achieving and maintaining those requirements, the successful application of these methods rapidly increased.

I'm afraid that up to the end of his Introduction, his stance appeared to be, so far at least, wholly inadequate! 

But, there is an excuse for the current mess that is evident in the theoretical and philosophical bases in this area. For, they consequently reflect the dire standards, both in Education, and perhaps even more so, due to those same inadequacies in the political organisations of the Working Class. 




Dialectics

For, though the means to avoid these errors had been finally established, first by Hegelian thinking, and then, more generally, by Marx in his Dialectical Materialism of concrete Reality too, it was never comprehensively applied to Science, despite being the forefront of philosophy from the early 19th century onwards.

The still fast-moving monolith of Science carried on exactly as before, constrained by its dominance by those committed to, and staffed by scientists exclusively from, the privileged classes.

But Marxism had been taken on by many in the Working Class Movement, and, hence, it was down to that strand to also apply it to Science.

But, to the detriment of both, that didn't happen either!

And, as indicated by Dusek's Introduction, this book will not be tackling the real problems either! Nonetheless I will be following this initial crit with further contributions in the near future...


03 January, 2019

DNA and the Social Development of the Brain?


In a CARTA video available on YouTube, by Leah Krubitzer, she delivers a remarkable alternative to the usual Genome-dominated idea of development in the brain. It clearly demonstrated that though the forms-of-development within the brain are solely determined by genetics, the actual contents of those developments are NOT so determined at all, but are primarily influenced by actual use, via behaviours in the real world - especially by behaviours caused by major crises inflicted upon the recipient.





This "seems" to return to the oldest problem of all in explaining development!

Is it wholly blue-printed within the DNA (Genome) of the living entity, which effectively determines everything that subsequently occurs, though occasionally changed by what are wholly accidental Random Damages to individual Genes, OR, can things learned during life be passed on to descendants as "Acquired Characteristics" (such as in current epigenetics and a return to Lamarckism)?

For, her contribution could also be seen in that way, but that certainly isn't, and indeed wasn't her case either. What Leah Kubitzer reveals is more a development of the former than a return to the latter as will I hope be revealed!

Indeed, various studies both of unusually sensually-equipped animals both occurring naturally, as well as in addition others having had their sensorial means artificially totally-restricted, and the effects on their brains compared over many individuals.

The results were remarkable!

Actual use, over time, had physically-changed the brains involved.

Particular areas of the brain appeared transformed in the animals artificially reduced in sensorial abilities, to enhance some of those that remained, to end up with a brain-structure similar to that of the duck-billed Platypus, whose brain-area dedicated to its super-sensory bill was relatively enormously enlarged. But, the changes noticed, in both, amounted to a great multiplicity of the connections from that part of the brain to other areas within it, and consequent increases in those particular areas too, the behaviours-possible were down to those vastly increased connections, and NOT to wholly new functional areas.

The brain was physically changed by enhanced behaviours, but then, via new connections, also enabling, in addition, wholly-new further development of such behaviours.

But, there is a great deal more in these findings than what immediately presents itself.

Notice that the duck-billed Platypus, as a species, hasn't changed much in vast periods of time, and yet the particular individual animal (a possum) deprived of its sight changed at a remarkable rate, and made all the necessary developments very early in its life - the initial period was absolutely crucial.




Nothing new was available to that animal, indeed it was a deprivation that precipitated the developments.

But, we already have a process in which the given Genome of an animal delivers all its "built-in" behaviours, with any changes being down to random chance mutations of genes. And, in addition, it is supposed to be only by such purely random damage to the genome that any changes can ever happen, and thereafter by Natural Selection, which chooses the best adaptations to predominate over succeeding generations.

Is not that single one-way causality also somewhat challenged by these findings?

For, the deprived individual animals developed not only new connections in their brains, but also enhanced, or even new, behaviours benefiting from those changes.

Yet, the developments in the brain must also be inherited! How else do modern animals including ourselves come to be as they are? And, at the same time, why do some organisms remain unchanged for millions of years?

Mankind has, in the past, clearly revealed important processes in this area, but, as usual, always conceptually simplified them in order to more easily develop them further - for simplifying Abstractions always enable such things (see all of Mathematics!).

And, there has to be more to the mostly wholly redundant and unused majority of any organism's Genome, where the genes seem to be in "rooms used as depositories of rubbish, and like those in many a Stately Home, full of no longer used cast offs".

I don't believe in 'junk' DNA! It is more likely that this represents The Past of that organism in some way, in its evolutionary development: occasionally transformed by mutations, but later bypassed either temporarily or permanently, as a repository of things that once worked but now bypassed. Could this be how prior evolutionary solutions return, in supposedly convergent evolution, such as the return of fish-like traits in sea mammals? 

Primarily, though, the dead weight of our pluralist history in Mathematics, Reasoning and even Science has imposed upon our thinking the myth of eternal Natural Laws and Reductionism, which fatally damages our ability to make sense of such Development at all, by falsely converting it into the mere Complexity of many summed-fixed-things and laws.

The consequent missing ingredient was therefore Real Qualitative Change, and hence the absolutely necessary means to ever understanding Creative Changes.


Darwin, Engels and Marx

Now, since Hegel and then Marx, the methodology of Dialectical Materialism had been devised to address such developments, culminating only in 2010 with the Theory of Emergences (by the writer of this paper), which finally tackled the trajectory of alternating Stabilities and Emergences that characterise Qualitative Development in literally all spheres.

And, echoes of it are clearly shown in the case of the deprivation of sight in a possum leading to a rush of developments in other senses - for in the Theory of Emergences the termination of seemingly permanent Stabilities can only be precipitated by crises that cannot be resolved from within them, and therefore necessarily results in both a collapse of the current Stability, and thereafter the consequent construction of a wholly new one, which is finally established via another and wholly different Stability and set of new capabilities!

02 January, 2019

Wealth!





  1. Is wealth the legitimate reward for hard work?
  2. Is it the necessary spur to absolutely essential innovation?
  3. Do the owners of inherited Stately Homes and Landed Estates deserve their Life of Luxury?
  4. Is all wealth actually created by the Captains of Industry?
  5. And is all War absolutely necessary to defeat those who wish the privileges of others for themselves?

NOT A CHANCE!


The Poor can do none of these things, except, of course, they create absolutely all new value by their labour!

How else is wealth really produced?

Yet, we are supposed to live in a Democracy!

Why don't the majority just vote in a Socialist Government to redistribute wealth more fairly?

The answer is, once more, they don't have the wealth to do it!

Socialists don't have the mass media in their pockets - no daily newspapers to state their case. They don't have round-the-clock radio and television programmes on their side, nor the mainstream film industry, nor any glossy magazines.

They don't even have the resources to build their organisations, and fund their organisers, their researchers, their publicists, or their journalists and writers.

They can't pay for roadside adverts, or those every few minutes on TV!

They can't buy the votes of elected representatives, by Knighthoods, or the like, or even just a regular ticket to The Good Life.

But the Rich do have enough to do all of these things... as much as they like! Could that be how they always stay in the driving seat?

Now, the Labour Party has a committed socialist as its leader. If we had a General Election now, he would win!





What will the rich do?

What did they do in 1945?

You know, don't you?

So, how could they be stopped THIS TIME?


19 December, 2018

Who delivers the News?



Graphic from Another Angry Voice


Without the facts, how can the People understand whats going on?


Can we really have a Democracy, without also having the necessary information to make informed decisions at the ballot box?

Who actually owns the Press and other Media? Who now organises the Social Media Platforms, and prioriotises their content?

It is always the Tories of this world, and their penumbra of "privileged-service providers"!

And it is clear what cause they serve - PROFIT!

Did the Working Class cause the Slump of 2008?

NO, it was them - the Profiteers and Bankers, extending the profit-making reach ever deeper into the poor, and then blaming them for their inability to be sucked any drier, and even shutting down the social services that are there to aid them: the completely disingenuous project known as Austerity.

And where in the Media is this truth exposed?

Absolutely nowhere.

Can the informing of the People be left in the hands of those whose sole purpose is to exploit those they are supposed to be informing?

NO! 

Of course it can't.

We have a National Health Service - so why not a National News Service? It could be independent of government - as an extension of a Real Library Service perhaps, financed through taxation, and NOT advertising. Local Papers would be produced by Local Libray News Servvices, which would also include a major presence on the Internet. And National Newspapers would come out of regional hubs in major centres throughout the country.

And why stop there? The publishing of books currently only survives if it makes a profit for the owners. A Public Publishing Service under the democratic control of its employees, would be very different, and it would also transform publishing on the Web. Indeed, the publishing of Music and Recordings, and the organisation of Concerts and Gigs, without the money making parasites, would benefit everybody involved. And, clearly, such would also be the home for Film Making - for writers, performers and artists would all be involved.

But, it would certainly NOT be as a top-down hierarchy, a bureaucracy as was established in "Soviet" Russia! It would be built out of grassroots Worker Co-operatives - today's real "Soviets", so that Democracy would dominate at every level.

Clearly, this would never be allowed under a Capitalist System, but would be ideal in a truly Socialist State. For, the fight for Socialism is never merely the switching of the Ruling Party of Government: it has to be far more fundamental than that!

Here is the key question:

If Corbyn's Labour Party win a General Election, what will the rich do to undermine it? 

And will we let them do it?

10 December, 2018

Dark Matters Loom



Anish Kapoor, Cloud Gate (2006) made of light-absorbing Vantablack


In a recent New Scientist (3206) article on Dark Matter, we are presented with what passes for Sub Atomic Physics today, namely:-
Particles crossing to our world could open a portal to the dark-matter realm
We've identified particles that could secretly cross from the regular world to the shadowy realm of dark matter.
No, you are not reading a treatment for the latest far-fetched Science Fiction blockbuster, but the introduction to the musings of several leading modern physicists worldwide.
WE KNOW it is out there. It makes up the bulk of matter in the universe and sculpts its grandest features with a hidden gravitational hand.
And yet, despite a long campaign to expose it, the mysterious cosmic architect known as dark matter continues to evade detection.

New Scientist (3206) - this publication is really starting to read like a comic 

So.... How did they get to this point, and what is it that is determining their problems? Well, it is a very long story, which is far too voluminous to include in a short review such as this (as I have discovered to my cost).

But, it IS a major crisis, and if it isn't remedied immediately, it will join the current Economic and Political Crises in danger of somersaulting our World into oblivion! And, these increasingly desperate Crises are not as unconnected as they seem.

We forget just how recently Mankind began to construct their modern intellectual disciplines, and how certain it would be that many wrong-turnings would definitely be unavoidable, in that endeavour, and their correcting would never be easy, or even fully achievable. For, Mankind was not designed, beforehand, for any particular purpose (certainly not for understanding the universe), but actually evolved within circumstances that were wholly independent of Mankind's existence. Any actual development was not a matter of decisions made by anyone, but the Natural Selection of that organism within the conditions it encountered.

But, NOW, with all these crises happening together, especially when Money and Power are steering the ship, it means that vested interests will oppose vital solutions, if they can be found at all, for such changes will inevitably be to their total detriment.

In past intellectual crises in Science, they were still painful and difficult to resolve, but progress was usually made eventually, unless, of course, they were also bound up with political power, as with the Church in certain historical cases. 


Galileo made crucial scientific discoveries that upturned the entire discipline and upset the powerful Catholic Church.
He was charged with heresy and spent the rest of his life in prison.


So though, as a scientist and philosopher, I will be attempting to deal with the total mess that currently confronts Science today, I may not be listened to, as other cataclysms may dominate, and the path I indicate may be made impossible to pursue in the ensuing circumstances!

Two different contributions have determined this current crisis in Cosmology.

First, there is the relative inaccessibility of the Cosmos we attempt to study: we cannot experiment upon it, as we can with many other more accessible parts of Physics.

And second, the primary tool for Cosmology - Physics, has now finally abandoned Explanation for the supposed Essentialities of Formal Mathematics.

It has, therefore, switched from Materialism back to Idealism (did God write this Math!?) - and switched from investigating concrete Reality, to studying abstract Ideality- the study of Pure Forms alone, presumably as the sole determinators of Everything in the Universe!

And, if that wasn't bad enough, the key intellectual disciplines of Mathematics, Formal Logic and Science are all wrongly-based upon the Principle of Plurality, which deals only with qualitatively-fixed components, and their quantitative variation. So that Science, for example, is supposed to be determined only by eternal Natural Laws. And, therefore, Real Development is replaced by a mere Complexity of pre-existing Laws.

And, Contradiction always and only ever spells Falsity!

But, the achievement of Plurality, for it surely was a step forward 2,500 years ago, is now becoming a major liability, and actually prohibits any real Understanding of Qualitative Emergences, such as those of Life, and then much later, that of Consciousness.

And, in the current topic of Cosmology, with its extremely slow tempo, and yet its breathtaking temporal scope, we cannot avoid the noticing of clear qualitative developments: they are everywhere. Indeed, remarkably, laid out, surrounding us out in Space, is a veritable History of the Universe, caused by the finite Speed of Light, as the further we look into the distance, the further we can look back in time. 




In addition to which, occasional Cosmic cataclysms, like Supernovae, and different stages in the evolution of Stars, are also available from various times in the past (but seen now).

But, and this is important, only snapshots of instances in the past are available, so as with the fossil record and the genetic record, all the involved actual processes of change are NOT directly available, so the interpreting trajectories are always, to some extent at least, purely speculative (leading to the sorts of quotes we saw earlier). 

The actual material determinators happened both somewhere else, and at a time no longer available.

The other source of data which skews our understanding is the modern, massive experiment machines like the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), where high speed collisions of "Elementary" Particles can be arranged-for and then observed and analysed.

Now, unsurprisingly, this latter evidence is considered to be "exactly" what may have been the case in the early moments of the Universe. So, overall, astronomical observations, plus accelerator experiments on Earth, as well as Mankind's discovery of how to cause Nuclear Fission and Fusion, were all used (along with Pure Speculation!), to construct the supposed Early History of the Universe - in particular commencing with The Big Bang.

But, totally unavoidably, too many premise-errors would necessarily scupper the possibility of those speculations being at all well-founded:

First, Plurality decreed that the Natural Laws would be the same throughout that whole period of Development, which is certainly NOT true. Second, all the components used in relating those developments are always the exact-same, or closely-related to those we know now. Third, the strictly pluralist view would also be unable to reveal, at the right key times, the creation of the wholly new, via Emergences, without which no real understanding of the trajectory involved could ever be possible. Fourth, the full richness of a true holist mix of simultaneous factors would not be even contemplated, nor are their consequent productions of Stabilities, Crises and even Total Collapses, not-to-mention the concluding crucial creative-constructive-phase producing the entirely new.

With such a constipated premise as Plurality, the true glory of the actual trajectory of Change could never ever even be approached.

Now, as a "review" of this New Scientist article, you might have expected a comprehensive account of all the current positions upon this "area of study". But, if I did that, I would only be perpetuating this pointless discourse. For, as those involved have already shot themselves firmly in the foot, and are hobbling away in a doomed-to-fail direction, I have, unavoidably, had to address two key things only.

First, the mistaken premises and methods of all current Physics, and second, the possible Nature of Dark Matter! So, having briefly dealt with the former, there remains only to establish an alternative explanation for the Nature of Dark Matter.

The answer may well lie in Substrate Theory.

I have spent some considerable time demolishing the Copenhagen idea of Wave/Particle Duality, by explaining-away all of its consequent anomalies with a simple idea. Wave/Particle duality is clever workaround for the fact that we can't detect the Substrate - merely by the re-introduction of a material Particle moving within an undetectable Universal Substrate, with the disturbances caused by that Particle, delivering the wave-like aspects via actual real Waves in the Substrate, and changing the whole set of phenomena into both initially direct and later recursive interactions between the two.

The main problem, in delivering this Substrate, was to define joint particles that would be so undetectable, yet entirely capable of delivering the full set of observed effects: and this was ultimately achieved using mutually-orbiting pairs from the full set of Leptons.







Now, without also delivering the full results of that extensive research here, we can still, at least, consider what impact that research has upon the possible Nature of Dark (which means undetectable) Matter!

For the Substrate could, itself, BE the fabled Dark Matter, or alternatively, if that doesn't work physically, the same sort of research that was applied to defining the Units of the Universal Substrate could instead be directed to other possible mutually-orbiting pairs of Elementary Particles, similarly undetectable. 

Dark Matter needs investigating properly!

Finally, it must be made absolutely clear what "modern"  Sub Atomic Physics has done to this once superb discipline.

In their reductionist commitment to the bottommost units of Matter as the basis for explaining everything else, Physics was committed entirely to the study of literally invisible so-called Elementary Particles, and studying them almost exclusively via Accelerators and Colliders. 

And this had deleterious effects. The abandonment of Physical Explanation, and its inadequate replacement by Mathematics, which because of its pluralist, simplifying and idealist nature, could only act as a means of revealing the Nature of Ideality, and NOT of concrete Reality - or its seemingly hidden matter.

09 December, 2018

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Too late to Remain? Why Corbyn is pushing for Lexit...



Richard Wolff on why Remain or People's Vote would be political suicide for Corbyn

08 December, 2018

Is Lexit really possible?






Contradictions in current attitudes to the European Union


Both the supporters and opponents of the EU, and the arguments they have pressed on to the crucially uninformed populace, have long profoundly misled the latter into a false dichotomy of options, which could never enable a real understanding of the actual issues, because the real imperatives were and are never revealed.

Both sides of the original Brexit argument came from different wings of the Ruling Capitalist Class, internal struggles in the Tory party, and sadly most of the current leaders in the Working Class took sides in that argument without establishing any thought-through Class position at all!

Just a few, on the Left, long ago, realised that the European Union was essentially a pro-Capitalist Organisation, and that it would be used to undermine the usually nationally-arrived-at policies of most Working Class organisations, Trades Unions and even Parties. But, the most common reaction was that Tariff-free Trade would help workers as goods would be cheaper.

Now, contrasting strongly with these ideas were those of the Ruling Class, who had split into two warring factions.

The pro-Europe wing saw the advantages of switching production to cheaper or less well-organised areas of the large economic area, and that the free movement of labour and goods would benefit the profit margins of businesses and corporations.

The opposite wing of the Tories didn't relish the possibility of a Europe-wide organisation of the Working Class, and the possibility of worker protection legislations (and other regulations designed to keep business in-check) getting through the European Parliament, via the preponderance of Social Democratic Parties common all over Europe.



The Left case for Remain is that the Tories will have a regulation bonfire after leaving the EU
damaging workers rights further, and emboldening the far right.

And, of course, the major and enduring economic slump of 2008, pressed the Nationalist wing much further to the right - just as had happened with the great depression of the 1930s.

We see a new rise of the Far Right across the globe.

The Ruling Class had immediately used the current economic difficulties to drive down wages and conditions, and desired to turn-back-the-clock even further - with a no-deal Brexit they could push austerity without possible restraint from Europe-wide Labour and social democratic parties via the European Parliament.

But, the "social democratic left" in Britain had major problems!

There are pro-Labour laws and protections in place in Europe that are now threatened, but all the policies outlined for the next Labour Government in Britain, for extensive Nationalisation, are currently prevented in the EU.

Now the situation is serious because Leaving Europe has long been the chosen ground for the Right Wing in the Tory Party: it isn't their main purpose at all - which is for the Right Wing to take control of the Party - to become its leadership and frame its policies! And the increase in both refugees from the Middle East and North Africa, along with Free Movement throughout Europe, gave the Right its usual chance of both exploiting and fanning prejudice as a means of mobilising the yobs and pushing the Overton window rightwards.

Believe it or not, the Labour leadership have the correct policy for the British Working Class - namely, to remain in a Tariff-Free Trade relationship with Europe without being a full member and having to abide by anti-socialist laws and policy! 

The case for Lexit.

Outside Europe, a Labour Government could begin its policy of re-nationalisation, and this time, as their policies seem to reflect, with a measure of Worker Control, as in their stated policy of Workers Co-operative Companies.




It isn't either obvious or automatic, but the Labour Party as a whole could be moved further to the Left, and the fight for Socialism really set in motion with real "momentum"! For, in spite of its evident Labour militancy in certain parts of Europe, the only generally-agreed policy seems to be limited to getting worker-friendly laws through the European Parliament, and NOT the overthrow of Capitalism and the establishment of a Socialist Europe.

And, this isn't just an alternative to the Social Democratic objective: for that has NEVER worked. It is an alternative to extreme Right Wing, or even Fascist solutions, and as was the solution in 1939, World War!

Do you doubt it?

07 December, 2018

Socialist Society: How do we get it...?




In 1945, with a landslide victory in the General Election, a Labour Government was elected with a Socialist Agenda. The Electricity, Gas, Coal, Steel and Railways Industries were all nationalised - taken into Public Ownership, to be run as part of a Planned Economy for the benefit of the People. And, the National Health Service was set up, as a service for all, free at the point of use. Education was reorganised to provide different kinds of instruction, with places allocated solely upon the basis of ability alone.

BUT, the Wealth still remained substantially in the hands of the Owning Class! They were even given substantial Compensation Payments for their now Nationalised Industries, which actually made them even richer in terms of actual spendable money.

And, they still owned the whole printed Media Industry - the Newspapers and Magazines, and the Book Publishing Organisations. 

In addition, all their Private Schools and Charitable Foundations and "Research Organisations" continued to provide privileged education to their children, and energetically peddle their views totally unrestricted. Generous donations to like-thinking organisations, and even individuals with political ambitions, actually increased.

So, ranged against the Labour Government, attempting to build Socialism out of the Ruins and Debts of the Second World War, were the still very well-heeled rich, totally determined that Labour should fail, and they would regain their property, their wealth and their power.

And they succeeded in just 5 years! 

The Tories were back in power after only a single Labour Administration, despite the fact that Clement Attlee's Labour government had been elected with the largest swing ever achieved in the country.

In other papers in this series, the myths of supposed Democracy have been spelled out, to make very clear that a great deal more than just "The Vote" is required to establish a truly Democratic State. Money will always undermine true democracy.




Now, Corbyn's Labour Party is ready-once-more with a somewhat similar agenda to 1945! But, after years of Blairite degeneration, he has a Party apparatus saddled with anti-socialist neoliberals and pro-capitalist elites. Yet, by a successful recruiting drive, he and his colleagues have established a pro-socialist majority within the rank-and-file.

So, without the victory of that majority, inside the Party, that Socialist Agenda will be betrayed from within!
Clearly, both the lessons of 1945, and the transformation of the Party simply MUST be achieved, or the next Labour Government and the People that elected them will again be defeated.

Are you clear what must be done?

For example:

  • What are the important lessons of 1945?
  • Do we give the rich any compensation?
  • Can we leave the Media in the hands of the Ruling Class?
  • And, if not, who should take on that vital responsibility?
  • Can we leave the Banks in private hands?

Now, these questions should clarify why these papers have been about:

Achieving Real Socialism!

For, without true Socialist Democracy at every level, the 1945 mistakes such as both Socialism-from-above, as well as leaving the Enemy Class adequately equipped to reverse any gains made, will undoubtedly re-occur.

Can you see what will be necessary?

And, will the Capitalist Class ever allow it?

I am sure you can guess the answers to these questions! Remember what happened with the Slump of 1929-1939? Will those solutions be tried again?

29 November, 2018

Socialist Society: How we could live...




The objective is surely a society serving the needs of its People, and certainly not the ever-growing power and luxuries for a small group of the Super rich. For now, and increasingly, it is becoming Credit with ever-climbing interest rates that is replacing adequate wages, and which is certainly never the way to deliver either a productive or a fair society. It replaces earned capabilities, with heavy and onerous responsibilities: it replaces confidence and energy, with ever mounting difficulties and uncertainties.

Capitalism is not a planned, nor is it an adequate system! It has crises every few years, and calamitous, decade-long Slumps, and even World Wars - all to serve moneyed investors with ever bigger Profits.

Yet, such a system is not inevitable! In fact, it took a series of popular Revolutions to terminate its Feudalist predecessor, carried out with the universally supported slogans of:

Liberty, Equality and Fraternity


The role of revolution in establishing capitalism as the dominant system is often overlooked

...but, even with its success, these revolutions ultimately only greatly empowered a particular small section of the new Society - the owners of Land, Property and Wealth. And, whilever that systemic inequality remains, so will the continued rule of the rich!

A Society for all-its-people has to be very different indeed to Capitalism: for privilege and inequality guarantees a divided and unstable social system.

The lessons of the 20th century must be learned or we will all perish!

But, let us be absolutely clear what it is, at this time, that we desperately need. Instead of just the profit motive determining everything else, we must start with what the People need in order to live, and will work in order to achieve. And, to effectively deliver that, we must have the means to determine those needs locally, then nationally, and finally globally! For only then can we have a Planned Economy- supplying what is actually required to everyone that needs it.

And, clearly, that cannot only be about sustenance, resources and the wherewithal to achieve and distribute it all, but also the essential services to facilitate it too - such as Shops and Stores, Education and Health Services, as well as Leisure facilities, and adequate support for all those in need of extra help.

In this new world the "entrepreneur" is no longer the Hero, but the Enemy - shown to be a parasite rather than a creative.

Policies will have to be socially arrived-at, and then cooperatively delivered.

Democracy must exist at every level of Society, and always be superior to individual power: even elected representatives will be subject to instant recall and replacement if they fail those that they represent.

And, what could be achieved by all of this?


Without the profit motive governing everything, our cities may begin to look very different.

The congenital instability of Capitalism would have to be terminated! The benefits of invention and new technology would be available to all. All industry would be addressed to the needs of Society, including protecting our environment. No one would be rich enough to buy privilege or own the means of production or the means of communication. All Education would be free to all. All Health Services would be free to all. All Stately Homes will be converted into precious Communal Facilities, such as Schools, Hospices, Colleges, Research Centres, Sports Centres, Retirement Homes and many more. High Quality Council Houses would be the main form of Public Housing. Public Transport would be both cheap and sufficient everywhere. A great increase in both City and Country Parks would be instituted; and participation in the Arts made available to all!

And to safeguard all of this:-

The Banks would be Nationalised! As would all the major nationwide Services such as Electricity, Gas, Water, Railways, Air Transport and Roads.

But though planned nationally, they would be run Democratically, and not by an unaccountable  central bureaucracy. 

26 November, 2018

Socialism?




Rule by the People and for the People?

What about Democracy in the Workplace?


Can we really have Democracy when the workers in a workplace have absolutely no say in what they do there? Should the "bottom line" of profit for an owner totally and always outweigh the needs and interests of the workforce?

It certainly depends upon who owns the business! To make any real change they would surely have to be socially-owned.

Now, of course, the status quo is usually argued-for very differently. For, management insists that only those who now make the decisions are the only ones competent to do so: while the workforce just don't know enough to even be involved. And, when no one is informing the workforce, or even making available the necessary knowledge, that may well be true.

So clearly, as with Political Democracy, so must it also be with so-called Democracy-at-Work! All information must always be made fully available for everybody to be involved to have access and discuss what they are attempting to achieve. And, sufficient resources to overcome any advantage to the privileged, must be fully available to the workforce too.

Currently, the workforce is always totally deprived of such information. But, if full access, along with requisite time, were allocated to such information, the workers, being intimately involved throughout their worktime, will soon learn to handle it, and crucially, with very different objectives to either owners or managers. Indeed, it will amount to a revolution in the efficiency and creativeness of both the work processes and their organisation. How could it be otherwise - the motivations involved will be very different!


Prof. Richard Wolff and his colleagues have written and spoken at length about the need for democracy at work. 


Just compare a Steam Railway Charity run by unpaid, and fully-involved enthusiasts, with the current chaos in our de-nationalised, run-for-profit rail services in Britain today.

What we are talking about, has never been fully achieved anywhere! For, in spite of the clear advantages of Socialised State Planning in Russia and China, after their Revolutions, the workplace was still relatively unchanged from prior Capitalist organisation. For the managers were appointed by the central government. There was NO Democracy-in-the-Workplace!

Clearly, "Socialism" is not what they actually had in those countries, and it was easy for a privileged bureaucracy to emerge, who did not put the working conditions, or the opinions of the workers, high on their agendas at all, and absolutely never delivered any decision making into the hands of the workforce themselves.

Indeed, Democracy-in-the-Workplace would not only transform that institution, but also significantly transform the Working Class involved, because they will, themselves, not only make the crucial decisions in what they are involved with every single day, but they will also discuss and even argue with their workmates, as to what policies the company should be employing. Instead of being excluded from the decision-making that affects their lives, and the wherewithal to make those decisions, they should instead be fully involved in both, and will therefore learn by their successes and their mistakes.

Socialism has to involve real Democracy at every level, in a Society in which Inequality and Privilege have been permanently terminated.




Indeed, the whole approach to the education of the working class, whether they are to be skilled or unskilled, absolutely must transcend mere work-based training and crucially disseminate critical thinking and real Understanding too!

I have worked in every level of Education from Schools, Further Education Colleges and Universities, and even in teaching unemployed youth computer programming, via Youth Training. And, from that wide experience, it soon became clear that the usual separate approaches did not deliver.

20 November, 2018

A New Holistic Iterative Method?


Henry Moore in his studio. The best artists seem to use a form of Holist Iteration as an investigative method.


Prelude:

What absolutely must be included here as the basis of a determined Holistic Stance, is to replace the most often assumed yet always-significantly-misleading consequences of the usually unconscious Pluralist Stance in all our methods.

And, that inevitably means removing any assumption of eternal Natural Laws, and instead, recognising the alternative of a whole set of multiple, mutually-affecting factors, which are not only changed individually by their accompaying-context, but reciprocally by also modifying that context too.

Permanently-fixed, natural kaws were an historically- necessary simplification, in order to even begin to understand Reality. Clearly, Plurality was an attempt to adjust Reality to get a handle on it - to get approximate values, from a simplified law.

But now, we absolutely must adopt new techniques to better reflect the true interconnected nature of Reality - one of these must be Iteration.


Iterative Methods:

There is a key problem in attempting, as I do, to develop an Iterative Method, from a measured data sequence alone, especially if we attempt to do it without any assumed form of model, for a relation supposedly- connecting those data points, as has always been the case in the usually-employed iteration techniques. For, without some sort of model, there seemed to be no way of reflecting the nature of the factors that cause the trajectory revealed in those data.

Now, in dealing with this situation, it is essential that several things have to be made absolutely clear about the usual iterative methods.

They always use an Ideal Form, taken directly from Mathematics, as a basis, which had then been fitted- up to those data, by multiple substitutions of them into it, to give a set of simultaneous equations, in the constants of the general form, which can then be solved. The result is still the same general Form, but persuaded- to-approximate to Reality, BUT only within-the-range from which those data were taken.

They then “re-structure” that equation geometrically- upon-a-graph into a set of iterative-forms. Now, such a re-structuring involves a major geometrical and transformative use, because, it isn’t merely a manipulation of the ideal equation. It is actually the use of that formula in geometrically-finding a consequent set-of-forms - one for each variable, that can use a single-known-point, and substitute from it into these derived iterative forms to find another single point, and, thereafter, further points, with each one derived from its predecessor.

And, the iterative forms so derived never change!

Being based upon Geometry-in-Graphs, they are unavoidably pluralistic: for the separation of variables into distinct directional dimensions, necessarily excludes any mutual influences they might have upon one another. So these iterarive forms also perpetuate Plurality.

They are fixed, but their repeated-use always gives new points, but always some distance from the “known” point used, so that the action moves rapidly across the whole range of the “driving” function’s possibility space (along with the usual drift as with all such iterative techniques).

Remember, absolutely nothing new has been added to the original source equation, only-the-means-used to access the sequence of generated points, delivered one-at- a-time. And if, as I am convinced, that original formula is NOT the deliverer of the sequence, but a simplified and idealised approximation, then all its short-comings MUST inevitably be carried over into the iterative forms derived from it, and added to by the effects of iteration itself!

Now, the reader is certain to ask why do these forms sometimes deliver things closer to Reality than the original source formulae? It is indeed an important question!

But, as the only significant change, in the actual plotting, has been the zigzagging-about the whole range of that ideal function, then that, plus the iterative drift, must be what is adding something extra, which can reveal something that was not there in the original idealised equation.

But, that method can surely only be some sort of purely- pragmatic trick. It certainly isn’t here taking us ever- closer to a definitive set of actually occurring situations, but just others in similar-but-different positions, in well- scattered general areas. They are certainly not due to the real physical causes (which are never even mentioned, never mind considered, but only due to our chosen strictly formal methods).

Clearly, though pragmatically, it is also only when our purposes can be at least partially fulfilled by such frigs, that we will use them. But, if our purpose is instead to better understand WHY things behave as they do, then it can only mislead us away from that valid, and indeed, absolutely necessary intention.

Let me re-emphasize, there is the important point that current iterative methods are always pluralistic – just like the original equation from which the iterative forms were derived, it assumes the same additively-arrived-at formal “cause”! And, such will be, for the very same reasons, significantly misleading.

But no Real World phenomenon is driven by a single factor: the general situation will always include many different factors, and crucially, if a holist stance is taken, instead of a pluralist one, then these factors will all affect and, indeed, change, one another to some extent.

Absolutely no other factors are included in the usual iterative methodology – it uses only ONE. So, what should be down to the hidden mutual affects of all the other factors involved, is here due instead to a rigged-up version of the usual method.

And, here it isn’t the actual-contributions, but something- else that may deliver something “similar”.


The Alternative:

So, it is suggested that we address these problems, instead, through the use of Recursion, in addition to the use of real points, and absolutely none of the usual pluralist and iterative methods of the past.

With each new measurement, we start by using Difference Methods (or something similar) to reveal what powers of variables are appropriate in the most general polynomial Model. Then use our data again, but now in the usual way to find the still unknown constants of that model.

So far, this sounds like something already used in the past, but there is a significant twist! We do not stick with that form throughout.

So, instead, we now recursively do the steps all over again, including the next measurement made, and repeat the full set of processes, not only with this, but thereafter with every single new additional measurement made.

What will happen is an evolving form, changing with each new addition.

Exactly what the most general form would be, may begin with the assumption of a polynomial. But, if the evidence is against that model, we could add further non-polynomial terms. The crux of the method then becomes the comparison of a predicted location with the real measured one, and a subsequent judgement as to what changes in the adjusted general form might be required.

The original idea for this method was conceived of as the measurements being taken as the body in question was moving (as if we were the riders on a rocket in Space). But, of course, a full, extended set could be achieved, before any fitting up was attempted, and in some complex circumstances, where many dominant influences could regularly come-and-go, for then this method will come into its own.

Indeed, the processes of the method could be carried out completely after the Event, and once sufficient had been processed to get some sort of form, all subsequent positions could be associated with its own version of the form. Also, each new, as yet unprocessed position would be predicted from the current version of the form.

Studying the varying forms could tell us more about the changing-real-influences affecting an overall form, than one that is both always simplified and idealised.

Postscript:

Now, the reader must appreciate that what is being attempted here is entirely new!

First, it rejects Plurality as the current basis for such pragmatic manipulations.

Second, it is attempting to indirectly include aspects of Reality that are usually excluded.

Third, it is purposely recursive, as in the Buddhist Loka Sutta, as a means of constantly checking upon its own validity.

It will most certainly NOT be the last word in this area: it will take some time to break ourselves from “If it works, it is right!” - the credo of the farmed situations that perpetuate Pluralist Science.



This paper was published as part of Issue 62 of SHAPE Journal entitled The Whole and the Part.

19 November, 2018

Issue 62: The Whole and the Part




Read the latest issue of SHAPE Journal on The Whole and the Part: a loose collection of recent papers aiming to develop a nascent Science of Holism, by looking closer at the crucial oppositions involved: Plurality and Holism, the Whole and the Part.


The Whole and the Part

The Hermeneutic Cycle

Thought for Today

Bringing Holism into the Methods of Science

Why Holist Science and Iteration?

A New Holistic Iterative Method

Plurality & Holism, Mathematics & Reality

Multi-variable Relations

Dialectical Emergence

Socialism!




Rule by the People and for the People = Real Democracy!


Capitalism is not rule by the people, it is rule by the rich. 

It goes to war only to safeguard their Wealth.

The Working Class are sent to their injury and death to maintain or extend the dominance of their rulers. And, yet it never benefits the People.

Capitalism still has its regular Depressions and Major Slumps as in 1929-1940 and 2008-now, and it is always the People who suffer.

Yet, the current Slump, as usual, delivers for the Bosses the very best circumstances for reversing what gains the Working Class have made, and even promises the rich a return to their good-old-days of rule, and the old debased standards of life for the majority of the People. This makes them easier to exploit and makes greater Wealth for the Bosses.

Employment is UP, but only at lower wages and in insecure jobs.

But, what was it that the Working Class expected? What was this "Socialism" that they aspired to?They constitute the vast majority, and produce all of the Nation's Goods, Wealth and Services.

And, they do have the Vote.

If their needs and wants were paramount, the World would be very different indeed! Not a single Stately Home would still be occupied by the rich: they would ALL be used where they are needed most, for the old, and the ill, and for the young too! The enormous magnificent landscapes, surrounding those Stately Homes, would be for the People, in Leisure, Recreation and Sport, and even for Housing.

Making the rich even richer, would have to be totally terminated and reversed! Why should anyone have such Wealth, Privilege and Power?

You may well ask how the current imbalance was able to establish itself in spite of "Democracy"? It's an excellent question! So, here are a few more:-

  • Is this Democracy independent of Wealth?
  • Are the means of informing the People independent of Wealth?
  • Can the Electorate sack their MP for not serving them?
  • Are the largest Political Parties independent of Wealth?

I think you know the answers! So, do we have Real Democracy? You know the answer to that too!

Whilever Wealth can always intervene effectively, there will never be Real Democracy. The name for the only truly Democratic System which has been strived for, for centuries, and something we have so far failed to achieve, is Socialism.
To append what we currently have with the description of it being a Democracy, is not just a bad joke, it is a downright lie.

Chris Hedges: "Democracy has become a facade"




Hedges may not be a real socialist, but he hits a few nails on the head in this speech

18 November, 2018

Haunting Henry Moore





The different meanings of "socialism"



Richard Wolff strikes again! Have a look at the last third of the video for a debate on socialism, what it means to different people, and what it has meant historically.