Saturday, October 13, 2012

A few days ago I voted

I feel relieved that I voted. I went to the election office and just voted. It took me no more than10 minutes.

I feel even better that we can vote early. Where I live we can vote 35 days before a federal election and it is amazing that I need not wait for the first Tue in Nov to be able to vote.   

I need not be preoccupied anymore with political debates, polls, or changing position/views mostly as I have made my mind up a few months ago and that was that.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012


Please have a read of this article, Congressman draws fire for calling evolution, Big Bang ‘lies from the pit of hell’, and tell me that this is not absolutely insane.

In this day and age and in this great country of ours, a representative who is supposed to be a luminary evokes -with nonchalance and shallowness- some of the darkest moments in human history. I am talking about ignorance and total abdication of logic.

We are independent beings and we are not being directed to do or not do things by anybody. There can be no supreme being able to tell us what to do or not to do.

According to Gallup and quoted in the article above:

'The Gallup Poll has been tracking Americans' views on creation and evolution for 30 years.  In June, it released its latest findings, which showed that 46% of Americans believed in creationism, 32% believed in evolution guided by God, and 15% believed in atheistic evolution.'

Can this be real? 46% of Americans think that we cannot explain our world without a God? I am ashamed of the vastness of people's ignorance and their stubbornness refusal of accepting a world working as it has from the beginning, independent of any gods. This cannot be about education. We spend vast amounts of money and resources on education and we cannot be that wrong. We just cannot.

So, what is the root cause of the vast numbers of Americans who think God is at center of their lives? Perhaps it is human nature and laziness. But perhaps it is our social structure. With faults and fissures that allow human mind to stray away from logic. Far, far away. As far away as the Milky Way.


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

On social alcohol consumption and tolerance

Elaborating on my previous post, I think that societies that are indifferent (or tolerant) to alcohol consumption are more tolerant than societies that do not.

Examples: Pakistan versus Germany. Or Saudi Arabia versus Romania. Or Egypt versus Italy.

In addition, alcohol consumption can be a proxy for other types of substances, such as marijuana or other mildly attention/focus diverting substances. (To be clear, abuses at individual level are not to be considered relevant for this post.)

Getting back to the idea that alcohol consumption -at society levels- fosters tolerance let's zoom in on some reasons.

1. Creates substitutes for acceptance and, surely,  creates a sense of brotherhood. Look at the beer evolution in Belgium or Holland: communities developed a sense of togetherness around monasteries, which then developed very creative beer brewing methods and flavors.

2. Promotes acceptance of different views during social gatherings. If you go to a wedding, say, and discuss -after a few drinks- about politics you get 'black listed' from ever going to weddings so you have an incentive to 'behave'.

3. Removes some opportunities from too much introspection. The results is that you do not need to worry about what you do not think about.

4. Quite possibly, changes perception of what matters at 'the deepest levels'. Young people are very easy to be influenced and the influence of alcohol overtakes the influence of any other indoctrinating thoughts.

5. Promotes the creation of knowledge paths/tracks indifferent to indoctrination. Knowing how to make beer (or whiskey or wine or brandy) and being able to do so can lead to financial independence. Who needs religion when they are self and fully sufficient? Taxation of alcohol has much more to do with -financial and thought- independence than with it being considered a 'vice', for sure.

We cannot discount the thought that alcohol production and consumption in Western societies (Europe) has led to more tolerant people. Alcohol and education, that is...