The goal of the Linux-Society (LS, dating back to the mid-90s as a professional club and tech-mentoring group) has been a purely-democratic Information Society; many of the articles are sociological in nature. The LS was merged with Perl/Unix of NY to form multi-layered group that included advocacy, project-oriented learning by talented high school students: textbook constructivism. Linux has severe limitations such that it is useless for any computer that will, say, print or scan. It is primarily used for webservers and embedded devices such as the Android. (Google is high-invested in it).

Technology is problematic. During the heyday of technology (1990s), it seemed it had the democratic direction Lewis Mumford said it should have in his seminal
Technics and Civilization.

Today, we are effectively stuck with Windows as Linux is poor on the desktop and has cultured a maladaptive following. Apple is prohibitive, and all other operating systems lack drivers, including Google's Android, an offshoot of linux.

In the late 90s there was hope for new kernels such as LibOS and ExoOS that would bare their hardware to programs, some of which would be virtual machines such as Java uses. Another important player was the L4 system that is a minor relation to the code underlying the Apple's systems. It was highly scientific but fell into the wrong hangs, apparently, and has suffered from having no progress on the desktop. There is a version, "SE" that is apparently running in many cell phones as specialized telecom chips, but is proprietary. SE's closed nature was only recently revealed, which is important because it is apparently built from publicly-owned code as it is not a "clean room" design it may violate public domain protections, and most certainly violates the widely-accepted social contract.

Recent attempts to enjoin into L4 development as an advocate for "the people" have been as frustrating (and demeaning) as previous attempts with the usual attacks to self-esteem by maladaptive "hacks" being reinforced by "leadership" (now mostly university professors).

In short, this leaves us with Windows, which is quite a reversal if you have read earlier posts here. But, upon Windows, we have free and open software development systems in the forms of GTK+ (the windows usually used on Linux) and the Minimal GNU Windows (MinGW and MSYS) systems. It is very likely this direction that development should go (that is, on Windows) such that s/w can then be ported to a currently-valid microkernel system that includes a driver system that can be adapted by hardware developers to reuse of their windows and apple drivers.

From a brief survey of L4, it appears that the last clean copy was the DROPS system of the early 2010s, was a German effort that used the Unix-like "OS kit" from an American University.

If we are going to be stuck on Windows, then it seems that a high level approach to free and open systems integration, such as creating fully transparent mouse communication between apps so that they can seamlessly work together as a single desktop (rather than deliberately conflicting). This would be very helpful for GIMP and Inkscape, both leading graphics programs that are strong in the special ways, but suffer from an inability to easily interrelate.

Another important issue is the nature, if you can call it that, of the "geek" or "hack." Technology is formed democratically but "harvested" authoritarian-ly --if I can coin a term that Mumford might use. Authority is plutarchy: a combination of aristocracy and oligarchy that is kept alive after all these millennia by using, or maligning, the information society as a part of the civilizing (or law-giving) process that embraces the dialectic as its method. Democratic restoration, that is to put humanity back on an evolutionary (and not de-evolutionary) track, I think, will require the exclusion of the "geek" from decision-making. As is, the free/open s/w culture attempts to give leadership to those who write the most lines of code --irrespective of their comprehension of the real world or relationship with normal users. We need normal people to somehow organize around common sense (rather than oligarchic rationalism) to bring to life useful and cohesive software and communications systems.

Interestingly, the most popular page on this site is about Carl Rogers' humanistic psychology, and has nothing to do with technology.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Oligarchy: What we learned in the Empathy Group

What we learned in the Empathy Group is that people who lack the necessary neurological constructs for collaboration will attempt control to gain resources because they cannot create them themselves, as the lack the ability to work with others collaboratively.  They will also resort to endless strategies to take from others and present themselves as something they are not.

This situation is so prevalent in society that it has formed society's control structure and that structure has been given a name: the oligarchy.  It is described nearly precisely in Plato's republic and it is the basis for control in our civilization--police enforcement, corporate management, judicial officials, politicians--and especially medicine: doctors and the medical and hospital industries that now absorb approximately half our money.

We termed the neurological defect "emotional communication dysfunction."  People with the dysfunction cannot collaborate in the normal way because they cannot connect using the emotional communication paths that humans and many higher mammals have.  Because of this, they cannot directly sense the pain they inflict on others, and further, they cannot conceive of the long-term effects of their actions.  This is a handicap in normal society, but society has been changed by them, as they can be intelligent, and they can cooperate to solve their problems, allowing them to obtain what they cannot create by trickery and force.  With time their cooperation became organization allowing groups of these dysfunctional people to gain control over large components of society.

For the West, the development of societal templates such as Plato's Republic, was a locus for their control, as Plato and his followers are credited for the basis of Western Civilization.  At the highest levels, Plato's elite, the dysfunction is complete; there is no human empathy, and the system is operated purely mechanically with only affectations to normal humanity allowed to create a thin, yet effective, pretense to humanity.  This is medically described as Aspergers  In the middle layers of the template is the guardian class; dysfunctional people whose inhumanity is part-time; they have hybridized diseases: bi-polar.  Some of the time they are humane and can connect with the mass of normal people, and sometimes they cannot and their disassociation allows them to be inhumane.  Without expert knowledge of these dysfunctions, a normal average person is easily confused by the changes, and hence the value of the part-time inhumane to the oligarchic structure.

OCD is another related dysfunction; those with it drive the system recklessly so that it can grow fast enough to offset the waste caused by its inefficiency: gambling is obsessive compulsion; Capital is obsessive consumption.

ADD also appears to be an oligarchic component, though its use to the structure is less obvious.  Possibly the random nature of the attention deficit mind mimics the random changes to DNA that drive evolution.  It may introduce the only form of creativity internally available to the oligarchy, as the oligarchy has to obtain all of its ingenuity from the normal mass of people; people the oligarchs cannot trust because of all they have done.

The oligarchy has continually leveraged technological evolution to expand its control to offset the natural enlightenment of a continually modernizing humanity.  Today the annexation of technology is so complete that entire Information Society is skewed to obscure the mentally dysfunctional reality of humanity's controlling elite.  The oligarchy has corrupted morality by confusing its meanings to focus society on a singular task of empowering the empathically defective, what is often called "the high-functioning autistic."  Initially these misconceptions were forced on the native and natural by the Roman Church; now even socialists work to convert sadistic children into future leaders and healers.

The oligarchy is ancient in its core, but as adaptable as a virus on it's surface.  in the post-Apartheid era, even its capital component has adapted to using anti-bias as a tool for the benefit of the pathologically-biased elite by forcing the misconception that the further expansion of their control, what they call governance, and along with it, exponentially increasing rates of natural exploitation, will benefit the mass of normal humans.  Of course it has not as it has never done so before; the moral fabric of natural society if further torn apart as the planet is moved exponentially closer to environmental collapse.

The most recent strategy of using anti-hate as a weapon of hate against anyone or any group that attempts to resist oligarchy's inhumanity.  It followed the successful destruction of the last the slavery societies, South Africa, when democratic peoples effectively politically forced South Africa's economic isolation causing Apartheid's collapse.

Other biased groups preceded Capital's conversion pure hate to a hybridized anti-hate hate; the most biased group of all, Feminists, successfully converted the struggle for equality in democracy to equality in the oligarchy; these women were the only of the socially rebellious to benefit from the global expansion of Capital.  The Western oligarchy has internally incorporated equality within their structure and for themselves in a way that allows it to bond with oligarchic structures from regions that were former competitors.  But the peoples of these regions are forced into fierce combat for  resources made increasingly scarce by Capital's continuing growth; and any complaints from the lower productive levels can be dismissed as racism.  In their minds, they can plausibly deny their bias with the most absurd rationale; they and only they deserve to be elite, as only they are unbiased.  Of course the normal average person, upon hearing that, will obviously think them insane, but will be frustrated as the oligarchy has now, more than ever, dominant control over all of valid humanity.

  1. Empathy and Emotional Communication Wiki
  2. Capital Structure Cheat Sheet