09 August, 2020

Of Cycles and Dialectics


Dialectical Dynamics

In Part 17 of David Harvey’s series of Lectures upon Marx’s Grundrisse, he reveals some crucial features of Marx’s version of Dialectics, based upon the repeated Cycles developed in the very intrinsic dynamics of both establishing the wholly New, within processes that then become parts of repeated Cycles, and which in their subsequent development, also elicit other consequent related Cycles, all of which, thereafter, mutually-determine each other’s qualities!

But they never settle into finally Fixed Forms. This can be confusing for readers of Marx, who expect definitions of things to stay the same - as they do in all Pluralist forms of study.

Indeed, they are always undergoing constant changes, and suffering consequent Crises, for Dialectics indeed emphasizes the Holist nature of Reality!

Now, this makes it very different for Classical Formal Logic (a Pluralist view), which has dominated all Reasoning since the Ancient Greek Intellectual Revolution. This Logic must consider things Qualitatively Fixed, though they can vary Quantitatively, and so-called Understanding becomes a kind of Logical Game - with fixed rules! The most fundamental rule of all forbids contradiction.

And, this meant that, for well over two millennia, that there was NO way of explaining Qualitative Development - which was reduced to Quantitative changes of fixed entities. So though the wholly New was often recognised, it could never be explained: a crude “Quantity into Quality” was merely assumed, and its circumstances noted, and used to predict when & How such things may change, but never Why!

But, certainly, how Marx understood such things, in his Grundrisse, was revealing its intricaces to Harvey!

And, some of the most revolutionary processes are revealed there as to how-and-why the wholly New could first emerge, give birth to other consequent processes and cycles, and were then, unavoidably, transformed, recursively by their own creations!

Indeed, though neither Marx nor Harvey were aware of it, recent research into both long-lasting Natural Stabilities within Reality, and their roles both within and outside of Emergent Interludes have been recognised and both described and explained via the concept of “Balanced Stabilities” - Stability itself is not only dynamic, but contradictorily accomplished via change.

For, these are combined phenomena, due to many simultaeous processes acting together, in balancing pairs, which fairly quickly, when subjected to cycles of variability, gradually filter out lesser contributions, yet establish relatively stable pairs of opposing processes, which effectively deliver an overall, co-ordinating bunch of these, which together provide a self-maintaining Stability overall, and, which is usually self-maintaining, for extended periods of time, but which can in extreme circumstances, precipitate an overall dissociation of all the individual component “balances” and finally cause the overall collapse of the complete “Balanced Stability” - a Revolution, in fact!

In consequence usually immediately forming new opposing Balanced Pairs, and ultimately composite Bundles in wholly New “Balanced Stabilities” in so- called “Emergent Interludes”

And elsewhere, and over time, these features, and others like them, are THE ONLY explanations for real, entirely- innovative creation of the totally NEW! Evolution is impossible with a strictly pluralist view of Reality.

And, the holistic mutal affecting of multiple simulateous processes, and cycles, makes the incredibly long odds of changes by mere Random Chance, in an entirely Pluralist World, a total non-starter!

Also, and perhaps even more important, the Pluralist set up is exactly what leads to the Second Law of Thermodynamics, permanently immobile Stability as the end point of varying factors, and the whole concept of Entropy as nonsense.

And, perhaps, even more importantly, the many wrong turnings due to Plurality, have been the myriads of contradictions that it has caused, initially in the division of studies of Reality into separate “Subjects” and “Specialisms” as a workaround, but most profoundly of all in dispensing with very effective Logical Models like The Aether, as an undetectable Universal Substrate filling all of Space, and the dispensing of Physical Explanations, replacing them with INADMISSIBLE, entirely pluralist mathematical Equations, which contain none of this crucial dynamic quality, whatsoever.

Reality may not have any pre-ordained directions of Progress, but it certainly behaves very differently when everything can potentially affect and transform everything else.

Exploring this brave new world is where Science must go next.

This post was taken from Issue 70 of SHAPE Journal entitled Cycles. 

08 August, 2020

Issue 70 of SHAPE Journal: Cycles

Read the Issue

This edition features a collection of essays by philosopher Jim Schofield on the importance of studying cycles.

It is becoming ever clearer that Repeated Cycles of Processes turn out to be imperative at all levels of Reality. From the enlightening holist philosophy of the Buddha, to weather patterns, metabolic pathways, life cycles and new extensions of Dialectical Logic and Physics Theory, recursive cycles are at the heart of many key attempts to understand the complexities and underlying structures of the natural world.

Key to this new study is unlocking the role cycles play in Qualitative Change, evolution in both Life and the development of matter, the interaction of vast systems and the Emergence of wholly new entities and systems. This research is vital in the development of Dialectical Materialist philosophy and SHAPE journal's attempts to rescue Science from the damaging limitations of Pluralist methodologies.

06 August, 2020

What exactly is Mathematics?

Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the purest of them all?

Mathematics isn't what people think it is. 

Even its greatest exponents have little idea what their discipline is and where it came from. 

In again watching Leonard Susskind's continuing Lecture Series from Stanford University on Quantum Mechanics; he spends most of a particularly intensive Lecture upon Pure Mathematics, establishing Complex Numbers as "Descriptors of Reality".

But what they really are, as he effectively demonstrates, (though that is most certainly NOT his intention!) are pure Abstractions from Reality. And most certainly NOT a "full & comprehensive reflection (with nothing omitted & nothing added) of Reality", but instead a:-

Mirror-like reflection

- losing most of what is intrinsically involved, in order to deliver a dramatically simplified version, which both merely and exclusively deliver a virtuality, totally without its actual determining causal content, and as such conforming ONLY to a set of Rules (as in a Game), which make what it does deliver mutually consistent with one another , BUT NOT for any intrinsic causality, but instead due to that set of Rules, independent of the Reality that was the real Causal Origin.

Now as a highly competent Mathematician, myself, I, long ago switched my allegiances to Physics, for its very different Basis as a Science of Reality-as-is! It (historically, at least) always attempted to explain things as well as describing them; and in so doing was regularly forced to correct and even extend its concrete premises, in order to remain subject to its key purposes.

But what is it about Mathematics that makes it inadequate in actually explaining Reality fully? And how does it' universal utilisation in the Sciences, distort our view of the Universe?

It was discovered in the Greek Intellectual Revolution of the 5th century BC by assuming all relations between Forms to be permanently FIXED (as they must be to enable a Formal Mathematical Rationality possible) - and this was much later embodied in the Principle of Plurality in which all such concepts are necessarily permanently fixed, for, by doing so, a fairly easily achieved self-consistent Logic as its main means could be guaranteed.

And this very first Intellectual Discipline of Mankind was so successful within Mathematics, that it was also illegitimately exported, wholesale, to both General Reasoning and all the emerging Sciences, crippling both of their attempted applications to a Clearly Evolving Reality.

Susskind constantly confirms my definition of mathematical Rationality both regularly and clearly throughout this lecture, as he extends the idea of Complex Numbers, entirely, exclusively and openly in this very way. But mentions NO actual Physics whatsoever.

Having seen many of his other Youtube Lectures, it is clear that Susskind's unifying basis for Everything he is concerned with is Mathematics: it alone Drives the World! And, he regularly sails well beyond the Three Dimensional Limits of Reality, legitimately with Time, but thereafter totally illegitimately with everything else. As long as the Determining Integrity of the reasoning is maintained, in the mathematical way, all can be stuffed into this same model!

And, of course, once everything becomes symbols on the page, related solely via Mathematical Logic, the concrete aspects fade into insignificance, enabling all sorts of Physically illegitimate reasons to justify wholly Pluralist so-called "Theories"!

Now this transformation of Physics is absolutely crucial, because the essential policemen of that Science, The Theorists, had always been absolutely essential to keep the pragmatic Technologists in their midst, in check via the physical Causality of their Theories. But, with the increasing triumph of the Mathematicians within those theorists, the whole approach in Theory was converted to wholly Pluralistic Mathematical Formulae.

Physics is being totally castrated by these changes!

And in a career-long struggle to reverse this tendency, this committed theorist had to spend the rest of his career, fighting these major inadequacies via extensive diversions into Philosophy, both of Mathematics itself, and of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, in order to find the answers, which only finally came to fruition in 2019 after many different research projects: 

The Processes and Productions of Abstraction,

The Philosophy of Mathematics,

Truly Natural Selection,

The Theory of Emergences,

Substrate Theory

and finally the Critique of the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Theory, which took a considerable amount of time, and which have all been published in SHAPE Journal over the last 10 years, and are available for anyone to read for free.

But when will other Scientists have this same realisation about Mathematics?

05 August, 2020

Joseph E. Stiglitz and the Trajectory of Chinese Communism since 1980

Stiglitz in China

In a recent Lecture to a Norwegian Business School Conference, Joseph E. Stiglitz (from Columbia University in the USA - he has been advising the Chinese Communist Leadership since the early 1980s, upon a transition to fitting China into a Market Economy globally), was, in his contribution to that Conference, extremely informative, in ways totally unmentioned either by the Citadels of Capitalism globally, OR by the current Left, supposedly opposing that system (including, surprisingly, many of the self-professed the Marxists)!

His contribution was NOT, of course, superior to those critics of Capitalism, but it DID highlight the inadequacies of the current Left's policies for fighting for both the End of Capitalism, in the West, AND, crucially, exactly how to achieve the necessary Revolution, without the major liabilities of the Rise of Stalinist Bureaucracies, as have followed such Revolutions in the past.

Now, immediately prior to the period that Stiglitz covers, the writer of this paper was resident in Hong Kong, as a lecturer in a University there, and had visited Communist China, as an already committed Marxist. So I was aware of the then current fight between the Maoist so-called "Gang of Four" (including Mao's wife) and the "Capitalist Roaders" - led by Deng, so I knew who won that fight, and how they disagreed with Mao's "Cultural Revolution". And, I travelled through the countryside observing how the smaller Country Soviets were working. So I am able to link up Stiglitz's account to its immediate prehistory in the Chinese Communist Party. But I must emphasise, most strongly, that in spite of the great value in studying Stiglitz's account, he is, certainly, no Marxist, nor even a Socialist. He is a Capitalist Economist, who accepts Capitalism, and plots its "best possible" consequent Trajectory economically, as both essential, yet worthy of much better critical study than it is usually accorded.

Indeed, literally all the criticisms of Capitalism, that both inform and energise the Socialist and Communist oppositions to it, are totally missing in Stiglitz: for his account is more like a modern Keynesian critique of current Neoliberalist Capitalism, rather than taking a steadfast position of requiring Capitalism's total termination.

Yet interestingly, Stiglitz was brought in to help, as it became increasingly clear to the Chinese Leadership, that the insertion of some tightly regulated Capitalist enterprises in China, was running into problems with the many country-localities in China, that were not included in the joint schemes, and these leftover-and-leftout town and village "Soviets" were clearly not benefiting from the economic changes, and were beginning to oppose the plans of the Central Bureaucracy, which would ultimately reveal iteself in the Tianamen Square Events: and require a Wholly New Phase, integrating this opposition into becoming part of the New Turn, and economic boom, in what was called the TVE (Town & Village Initiative), but to make it work, any remnants of the "Soviet" nature (which I had observed when I visited China before 1980), just had to go - and this, in time, would again require yet another New Phase!

CCP propaganda poster 1979

Guangdong Province (I think)

School in China 1979

Villagers building dam

Photographs from my travels in Communist China, 1979

But, as the reader will have already imagined, the alternatives to be put forward on this blog are most certainly NOT Keynesian criticisms of Capitalism, but, on the contrary, major criticisms of the current Left's opposition to Western Capitalism, as they were surprisingly and increasingly revealed by the experiences in China in the last 40 years, which has revealed a very Marxian Trajectory of differently necessary Phases of development, as what were previously-Working-Policies ran out of steam, and had to be regularly replaced, but, in a very pragmatic - "Crossing the River by Feeling for the Stones" way, as they put it! For, every change in Policy, was NOT occurring within an established Socialist Economy, but now in a mixed Communist/Capitalist Economy, both unavoidably linked to World Capitalism, and thereby guaranteed to engender such Crises regularly, and ultimately, at some point, precipitate a Wholesale Collapse.

NO, what I intend to extract from those twisted-temporary-experiences in China, is a much better Theory, extracted from and among Real 21st century Marxists, intended to guarantee the Success of Socialist Revolution in the West!

For, a comprehensive, all-areas-applicable Marxism (more properly described as Dialectical Materialism) was not sufficiently fully defined by Karl Marx - for though his contributions were Truly Revolutionary, they were not soundly applicable when not limited only to Marx's completed work: indeed the absolutely crucial area of The Sciences, was not significantly addressed, comprehensively, until the second decade of this century, with the various critiques of the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Theory published in SHAPE Journal and elsewhere on the Web, by 2019.

And, in addition, the now available extensive range of lectures by David Harvey, all now on Youtube, both on Marx's Kapital and the Grundrisse, have brilliantly revealed aspects of Marx's method and begun to make them more generally applicable, BUT ONLY if tackled in the same way as Marx had worked, and in addition by scientifically-trained-experts, not only covering the specialist ground, but also, and crucially and necessarily extending the Marxist Method.

Indeed, though he didn't realise why it was necessary, Stiglitz, in his account of the trajectory in the last 40 years of Communist China, clearly identified the various key Crises, in the sequence of required changes, which could alternatively be explained using Harvey's interpretations of Marx's Method, but extended beyond what Marx had access to.

Now, the most important re-application of these methods is NOT primarily in addressing the failures of the Stalinists in China, but, in the far more important criticisms of the truncated appreciations of Marxism currently available, and unavoidably incorrectly applied to the necessary political agitations NOW, against Capitalism in the West! For, no matter what they all call themselves, the various Left political elements are NOT equipped with the 21st century Marxism that I am talking about: and hence, necessarily, their "Theory" leads to both Strategies, Tactics and Propaganda, that are all doomed to result in failure!

And, if Proof is required, they should all be pressed to explain both the various Phases that have been forced upon the Stalinists in China, AND, even more importantly, exactly how those same analyses can be effectively applied to their own current positions and policies - for there definitely are similarities, indicating what inexplicable-to-them failures they will most certainly encounter, and hope to understand enough, to be able to plot paths around them.

And, if they cannot do it, redirect them to both Harvey and Marx's original works to effect a radical change in what they consider to be MARXISM!

For, no-one on the Left seems to be aware of the Revolutionary Situation they are careering towards at some considerable speed, and are ALL at a loss to see what transforming Transitional Demands they will undoubtedly need, to orient themselves and Their Class to what must be done!

Have they read "Ten Days that Shook the World" by John Reed?

Do they not know why the slogan "Bread, Peace and Land", was their cry, and that it worked, and why it did so?

What should our demands be?