Dream of the Dragon

Tag: numbers

Obama should study Reagan

by Justin

Change and hope. Those words, the ones Americans so desperately wanted to hear in the oblivion of Bush’s second term, dominated Obama’s nearly immaculate campaign and became symbols of a new era. The timing of Obama’s ascendancy couldn’t have been better, really. The old guard had failed miserably at leading, American’s were disenchanted with the GOP and wanted a radical shift. By and large, you know. Democrats and liberals were, of course, going to dodge any Republican candidate. But Obama tapped into the independents and the more moderate republicans. Running a black candidate was a serious gamble, but that was the moment. And Obama seized the hell out of it. Then what happened?

Okay, so we go into his presidency with impossible expectations. Absolutely unrealistic. I wrote about this before, about the inevitable meeting of his idealism and the labyrinth of politics – how liberals should have seen it coming and should take his stumbles and compromises with a grain of salt. Read the rest of this entry »

Becoming Robots

by Justin

I worry about encouraging the seduction of the material world. The dichotomy of Haves and Have-nots inspires crime and prejudice, hatred and conflict. If a new pinnacle of physical achievement emerges that further stratifies the world, how dangerous might that be for all involved? I’m not so sure I’d sign up for what certain groups believe is the next round of evolution.

The New York Times ran a piece last week about the Singularity movement, interviewing some of the crazier geniuses and technophiles at the new university funded by Google founders and other Silicon Valley darlings. For a lot of people the concepts of transhumanism, of a post-human world of biotech and other science fiction wonders this isn’t a revelation. The fact that a university with extensive funding is actively pushing for the realization of that particular utopia may be a bit surprising. Read the rest of this entry »

Real Shenanigans

by Justin

I wonder if this thing will boil down to a bizarre fluke, underhanded politics, or straight up criminal manipulation.

This past Tuesday Alvin Greene, an unemployed Army veteran with no political background, won South Carolina’s Democrat nomination for the U.S. Senate. In this age of internet campaigning and the sudden celebrity possible through YouTube that kind of success isn’t all that outlandish. Mr. Greene doesn’t need the edge of sharing the name of a recently deceased long time Senator – these are strange days for traditional publicity building.

What’s remarkable, though, is that Alvin Greene produced not one advertisement, gave no speeches, and spent no more money than the $10,400 required to get your name on the ballot. The man’s nothing but a question mark and he won the Senate nomination. He has no cell phone and only checks his email two or three times a week at the local library in the 4000 strong town of Manning, S.C.  I can’t pin down, and it doesn’t seem like informed analysts can either, how he managed to wrangle 59% of the vote. Read the rest of this entry »