Friday, March 31, 2006

The game of numbers

Since the elections I had not watch any news channel, and my life was quite peaceful. Today I decided to take a peak. Suddenly the topic of illegal immigrants popped up. I also realized that the President, at Cancoon, taught immigrants how to make hotdogs for their low wages.

Instead of abstract programming, I would like to talk about some social topics. Thus, this note is not about software development. The title reflects the abuse of numbers in creating deceptions.

A while ago I heard a quote from Mr. Greenbag, something like “Americans live 7 times better than the rest of the world”. This is not a wrong figure. All you need to do is to leave out a few million poor and homeless, then take the average over 100, 000 middle class Americans for each Mr. Greenback. He probably mentioned the American Dream of living in a lender-owned house as if the rest of the world live in caves.

The French mathematician D’Alembert observed that some mathematicians are confusing mathematical formalism with some kind of game. His idea was that a person should pay attention to the reality outside of his head. Russell got a Nobel Prize for following his advice.

McCarthy argues that the world will reach the American standard of living in near future, solely using multiplication and division. When General Ford felt hot while playing baseball at the age of 90, and in 90-degree weather, helicopters were ready to take off. On the other hand, the corpses of the homeless are found by following their smell. McCarthy is a scientist trying to create hope for a better future, assuming that we are rational beings.

Our brain restructures itself in order to accommodate for new mechanisms of learning and thinking. At about the age of four the restructuring is quite extensive and results in a lot of loss of data. The restructuring at the about the age of 18 prepares us for abstract thinking. The last restructuring coincides with a change of color of our hair. It seems that we become wiser mainly because we cannot perform like the days we were young.

We owe the notion of restructuring of brain to Piaget. Mark Twain believed that everything would be great so long as we were born old and aged backwards. A noble thought so long as no one would be born like Rumsfeld and Greenberg. Unfortunately, socially we have not made it to the age of four, yet. If our social restructuring is going to work like our brain, there will be a rebirth as Jesus prescribed as a requirement to enter the Kingdom. I pray it will be peaceful.

Recently, CNN has been showing the sad degree of poverty in North Korea. Since we have a lot more of that right here in our country, I was confused as to why CNN bothers to go that far away to portray the agony of poverty. I quickly noticed that our poor do not have TV. In order for CNN to put a price tag on its commercials it must somehow demonstrate that the viewers can afford some of the products being advertised during their programs.

It is then that it became clear why Lou Dobbs focuses on issues relating to the Middle Class. By the way, this is not about Mr. Dobbs. Nevertheless, exactly what is the value of showing the middle class the quality of their next destination? Our middle class is decaying at a high rate of attrition and soon Lou will have very small population to sell commercials to.

With regard to the ridiculous gas prices, the principle of demand and supply is indeed valid. However, the demand is on who gets the billions of dollars. Is it the banks, or the oil companies? Obviously, the supply of dollars is not unlimited, while the corporations have a huge need for enormous numbers of them. These idiots have only learned that numbers with more digits are better.

The conservation they are encouraging has nothing to do with demand and supply of oil. What they want is to keep their reserves for longer periods and sell it at artificially high prices. That way, their descendents will enjoy the ride for generations, laughing at dummies like us.

Interestingly, TXU (Texas Electricity company) advertises that it is spending billions for a secure future for our energy needs. What they really are doing is ripping us off for their lavish spending in securing their continued future profits. In particular, as the customers are dropping due to mass migration to poverty class, TXU prices have been rising rapidly in order to make up for their targeted levels of profit. Then, they blame us for not conserving where in actuality the more we conserve the higher the prices will go.