Compenetration Weblog

fusion of inner and outher space

” If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear. “(G. Orwell)

Meditatio (Ezra Pound)

When I carefully consider the curious habits of dogs
I am compelled to conclude
That man is the superior animal.

When I consider the curious habits of man
I confess, my friend, I am puzzled.

Slave Market with Disappearing Bust of Voltaire, 1940 (Salvador Dali)

The current situation we are traped into can not be better explained than with this Dali’s picture. The whole drama about coming recession, oil prices, problems in bank sector might be just illusion but with very real consequences for ordinary people. Although we can hear and see in media just upper layer of this phenomena there are many different layers behind…some of them hardly visible, some of them distorted or invisible on a first sight. (The credit crisis explained in black and white; US faces global funding crisis, warns Merrill Lynch). Another very good article with good comments Morgan Stanley warns of ‘catastrophic event’ as ECB fights Federal Reserve.

See bellow two must see documentaries which give insight into the roots of the current problems. Nothing just happens; every event has it own cycle with some visible icebergs on a surface. Money masters documentary is a bit old but never so accurate than today. It gives clear geneses of economical problems and its effects on people who are “slaves” in the whole story.

The power of corporate media shows how this optical illusion for ordinary people is done. The technology for mass deception.

Although this two documentaries are must for financial and media experts they are much more important to be seen by all people to understand why what we see is not what we get.

The Money Masters

“The powers of financial capitalism had a far-reaching plan, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole…Their secret is that they have annexed from governments, monarchies, and republics the power to create the world’s money…” THE MONEY MASTERS is a 3 1/2 hour non-fiction, historical documentary that traces the origins of the political power structure that rules our nation and the world today. The modern political power structure has its roots in the hidden manipulation and accumulation of gold and other forms of money. The development of fractional reserve banking practices in the 17th century brought to a cunning sophistication the secret techniques initially used by goldsmiths fraudulently to accumulate wealth. With the formation of the privately-owned Bank of England in 1694, the yoke of economic slavery to a privately-owned “central” bank was first forced upon the backs of an entire nation, not removed but only made heavier with the passing of the three centuries to our day. Nation after nation, including America, has fallen prey to this cabal of international central bankers

EZRA POUND

He disapproved of American involvement in the war and tried to use his political contacts in Washington D.C. to prevent it. He spoke on Italian radio and gave a series of talks on cultural matters. Pound believed that economics was the core issue at hand. Specifically, his talks were largely about usury and the notion that representative democracy has been usurped by bankers’ infiltration of governments through the existence of central banks, which made governments pay interest to private banks for the use of their own money. He maintained that the central bank’s ability to create money out of thin air allowed banking interests to buy up American and British media outlets to sway opinion in favor of the war and the banks. Pound was not the first prominent American to make this assertion; for example New York City Mayor John Hylan had publicly said the same thing back in 1922 when he said “these international bankers control the majority of the magazines and newspapers in this country.” Pound believed that economic freedom was a prerequisite for a free country. Inevitably, he touched on political matters, and incorporated antisemitism into his denunciations of the war.

 Pound believed that the bankers in charge of the Federal Reserve and their associates in the Bank of England were responsible for getting the United States into both World Wars, in an effort to drive up government debt beyond sustainable levels (the national debt indeed rose astronomically because of the wars). The book, Secrets Of The Federal Reserve, charges that bankers hide behind the screen of the central banks and pull political strings to drive countries into the war, creating immense profits for themselves as the principal beneficiaries of wartime debt. Pound advocated an abandonment of the current system of money being created by private bankers. He favored government issued currency with no interest to pay, preventing the need for an income tax and national debt, much like the system used by the Pennsylvania Colony from 1723 to 1764. Pound argued that his views on money aligned with those of Thomas Jefferson, as well as with Benjamin Franklin’s Colonial Scrip.

 The Power of Corporate Media – Orwell rolls in his grave

Orwell Rolls in His Grave is a 2004 documentary film written and directed by Robert Kane Pappas. It examines the current and past relationships between the media, the US government and corporations, analyzing the possible consequences of the concentration of media ownership. Making references to George Orwell’s novel 1984, the film argues that reality has met and in some ways exceeded Orwell’s expectations about a society dominated by thought control, which is made possible by the media. According to the film, the mass media no longer report news, but manage them, deciding what makes the headlines and what is conveniently ignored, thus ultimately defining the framework upon which most other issues are discussed by the society.

July 16, 2008 Posted by | conspiracy, Documentary, mind, Movies, Poems, Politics, psychology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Matrix in Your Head – Memento

Watched Memento  by  Christopher Nolan.  Very intriguing movie, full of hidden messages, scenes in reverse order. See very good review in Salon.com.

Movie deals with tricking nature of two basic corner stones of our mind: memory and imagination. Invented past as anchor for future. But lately research shows that the same brain structures are responsible for memories and imagination. And that believing can be seeing – Context Dictates What We Believe We See. Pretty visionary movie though.

Ties Between Memories And The Imagination.

“You might look at it as mental time travel–the ability to take thoughts about ourselves and project them either into the past or into the future,” says Kathleen McDermott, Ph.D. and Washington University psychology professor. The team used “functional magnetic resonance imaging” — or fMRI — to “see” brain activity. They asked college students to recall past events and then envision themselves experiencing such an event in their future. The results? Similar areas of the brain “lit up” in both scenarios. 

Researchers say besides furthering their understanding of the brain — the findings may help research into amnesia, a curious psychiatric phenomenon. In addition to not being able to remember the past, most people who suffer from amnesia cannot envision or visualize what they’ll be doing in the future — even the next day.”

Another good article, posted in Scientific American Mind, uses Memento to explain the nature of memory.

The Matrix in Your Head

The discovery of place-tracking neurons called grid cells, our experts say, “changes everything”

 

By James J. Knierim

 

In the 2001 suspense thriller Memento, the lead character, Lenny, suffers a brain injury that makes him unable to remember events for longer than  a minute or so. This type of amnesia, known as anterograde amnesia, is well known to neurologists and neuropsychologists. Like Lenny, sufferers remember events from their life histories that occurred before their injuries, but they cannot form lasting memories of anything that occurs afterward. As far as they recall, their personal histories ended shortly before the onset of their disorders.

 

The cause of Lenny’s problem was probably damage to his hippocampus, a pair of small, deep-brain structures crucial to memory—and also important to some of today’s most exciting and consequential neuroscience research. Decades of research have made clear that the hippocampus and surrounding cortex do more than just place our life events in time. The hippocampus, along with a newly discovered set of cells known as grid cells in the nearby cortex, traces our movement through space as well. And by doing so, it supplies a rich array of information that provides a context in which to place our life’s events. The picture that is emerging is of historic importance and more than a little beauty.

Exactly how does the brain create and store autobiographical memories? Although that question has fascinated scientists, philosophers and writers for centuries, it was only 50 years ago that scientists identified a brain area clearly necessary for this task—the hippocampus. The structure’s role was made clear in 1953, when William Scoville, a Hartford, Conn., surgeon seeking to relieve the epileptic seizures that were threatening to kill a patient known as H.M., removed most of H.M.’s hippocampus and discovered he had rendered him unable to form new, conscious memories. Since then, the case of H.M., along with extensive animal research, has firmly established that the hippocampus acts as a kind of encoding mechanism for memory, recording the timeline of our lives.

 

In the 1970s another discovery inspired the theory that the hippocampus also encodes our movement through space. In 1971 John O’Keefe and Jonathan Dostrovsky, both then at University College London, found that neurons in the hippocampus displayed place-specific firing. That is, given “place cells,” as O’Keefe dubbed these hippocampal neurons, would briskly fire action potentials (the electrical impulses neurons use to communicate) whenever a rat occupied a specific location but would remain silent when the rat was elsewhere. Thus, each place cell fired for only one location, much as would a burglar alarm tied to a tile in a hallway. Similar findings have been reported subsequently in other species, including humans.

 

These remarkable findings led O’Keefe and Lynn Nadel, now at the University of Arizona, to propose that the hippocampus was the neural locus of a “cognitive map” of the environment. They argued that hippocampal place cells organize the various aspects of experience within the framework of the locations and contexts in which events occur and that this contextual framework encodes relations among an event’s different aspects in a way that allows later retrieval from memory. Yet a consensus is emerging that the hippocampus does somehow provide a spatial context that is vital to episodic memory. When you remember a past event, you remember not only the people, objects and other discrete components of the event but also the spatiotemporal context in which the event occurred, allowing you to distinguish this event from similar episodes with similar components. But How?

 

Despite intensive study, however, the precise mechanisms by which the hippocampus creates this contextual representation of memory have eluded scientists. A primary impediment was that we knew little about the brain areas that feed the hippocampus its information. Early work suggested that the entorhinal cortex, an area of cortex next to and just in front of the hippocampus, might encode spatial information in a manner similar to that of the hippocampus, though with less precision.

 

This view has now been turned upside down with the amazing discovery of a system of grid cells in the medial entorhinal cortex, described in a series of recent papers by the Norwegian University of Science and Technology’s Edvard Moser and May-Britt Moser and their colleagues. Unlike a place cell, which typically fires when a rat occupies a single, particular location, each grid cell will fire when the rat is in any one of many locations that are arranged in a stunningly uniform hexagonal grid—as if the cell were linked to a number of alarm tiles spaced at specific, regular distances. The locations that activate a given grid cell are arranged in a precise, repeating grid pattern composed of equilateral triangles that tessellate the floor of the environment.

 

Imagine arranging dozens of round dinner plates to cover a floor in their optimal packing density, such that every plate is surrounded by other, equidistant plates; this arrangement mimics the triggering pattern tied to any given grid cell. As the rat moves around the floor, a grid cell in its brain fires each time the rat steps near the center of a plate. Other grid cells, meanwhile, are associated with their own hexagonal gridworks, which overlap each other. Grids of neighboring cells are of similar dimensions but are slightlyoffset from one another.

 

These grid cells, conclude the Mosers and their co-workers, are likely to be key components of a brain mechanism that constantly updates the rat’s sense of its location, even in the absence of external sensory input. And they almost certainly constitute the basic spatial input that the hippocampus uses to create the highly specific, context-dependent spatial fi ring of its place cells.

This discovery is one of the most remarkable findings in the history of single-unit recordings of brain activity.

 

JAMES J. KNIERIM is associate professor of neurobiology and anatomy at the University of Texas Medical School at Houston, where he studies the role of the hippocampus and related brain structures in spatial learning

and memory.

 

 

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DAVID BOWIE (end music from the movie)

 

FINAL SCENES OF THE MOVIE

June 24, 2008 Posted by | brain, mind, Movies, Music, neurology, neuroscience, psychology, Science | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

V for Vendetta

“God is in the rain.”  (V for Vendetta)

 

Instead of being depressed living in a bad movie i rather watched very good one.  V for Vendeta (2005) is worth to see movie. If i did something else and I’d just have listened the voices, some parts sound like listening major TV networks lately. Terrorists attack, TV propaganda, frighten people, fear, power, prisons, …

Overall, movie is very good and is a good metaphor of our current situation. Some romantic elements doesn’t hurt either. Movie is directed by James McTeigue and written by Andy Wachowski and Larry Wachowski (Matrix).  At the end movie with some quotes, slow motion visual effects and martial (knifes) arts reminds of Matrix. In good sense, of course.  Natalie Portman  as Evey is good as always. Still like the most her play in  Leon (which is amazing movie) and in Goya’s Ghosts she played very well too.

Hugo Weaving – V. (Smith from Matrix) gave soul to V. And i liked play of Finch (Stephen Rea ) . i liked his play in The Crying game  by  Neil Jordan  a lot. The Crying game was my fav movie for a long time. And as in The Crying game he realises and accepts at the end –or as he says in V for Vendetta: “I can see it now. We are part of the same pattern. We are all trapped in. “

Origin of the film:

V for Vendetta  is a ten-issue comic book series written by Alan Moore and illustrated mostly by David Lloyd, set in a dystopian future United Kingdom imagined from the 1980s about the 1990s. A mysterious anarchist named “V” works to destroy the totalitarian government, profoundly affecting the people he encounters.

And this is Moore critics about film:

After reading the script, Moore remarked:

“[The movie] has been “turned into a Bush-era parable by people too timid to set a political satire in their own country… It’s a thwarted and frustrated and largely impotent American liberal fantasy of someone with American liberal values standing up against a state run by neoconservatives—which is not what the comic V for Vendetta was about. It was about fascism, it was about anarchy, it was about England.”

What ever were their dispute, I do like a movie and all its hidden messages and i also do appreciate Moore’s visionary story. Or as it says in the movie:

V: Your own father said that artists use lies to tell the truth. Yes, I created a lie. But because you believed it, you found something true about yourself.

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V for Vendetta  by ‘Cat Power’

June 17, 2008 Posted by | Daily bites, Movies, Music | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sins of the century: Stolen lives, childhood, dignity and hope in the name of power and money

My last movie trip was tought. For a brain. To digest this injustice which is mostly hidden to “civilised world”.  The Constant Gardener, Invisible Children and The Kite Runner (thanks to oceanshaman for a tip) have one thing in common. Stolen lives, childhood, hope and dignity. Of the whole generations, continents,.. People and kids as collateral damage of power play. Yet every human being has heart and soul, so many dreams, love and hopes within,…are those hope and dreams less worth than western ones? How can we talk about high level of moral values, humanism  and scientific achievements our civilisation has built if small part of human race use other majority as a tool for their own well being? People as predators.

As Baba in The Kite Runner says: “No matter what the mullah teaches, there is only one sin, only one. And that is theft. Every other sin is a variation of theft. (..) When you kill a man, you steal a life. When you tell a lie, you steal someone’s right to the truth. When you cheat, you steal the right to fairness. Do you see?”

The Constant Gardener

The Constant Gardener  is a story of African poverty, ruthless exploitation of continent and people in order to maximaze corporations’ profits (in this case Pharmaceutical colonialism), with underlying beautiful love story beetwen Justin and Tessa (Ralph Fiennes  and Rachel Weisz).  Movie is based on John le Carre’s  novel The Constant Gardener. (Trivia: Le Carré published an essay entitled “The United States has gone mad” in The Times in January 2003, protesting against the war in Iraq, saying: “How Bush and his junta succeeded in deflecting America’s anger from Bin Laden to Saddam Hussein is one of the great public relations conjuring tricks of history.”)

Movie is directed by Fernando Meirelles  who directed also  Cidade de Deus – City of God . Stunning pictures of landscape and sensitive portrait of suffering and survival of African people who are desparately  waiting for leftovers from rich man’s table. So sad.

INVISIBLE CHILDREN  

At the end of the movie Justin run from rebels who are stealing children.  Wanted to know more about, i found documentary  INVISIBLE CHILDREN  , which really shocked me. Still have picture of those fearful and fearless kids in my head. Made me think how i can help. Cos if this documentary doesn’t move something within people than we are the ones whom this civilisation has stolen the soul not just to African people. Kids as a weapon, kids with weapon (5-12 years old, reminds me on City of God); fearless trained small killing machines. Ruthless power of tribes, fueled by corrupted governments, financed by multinationals and U.N. with the purpose to further exploit African land and people.

See this shocking video and spread the word…

And see the role of US, U.N. and Russia in Africa. Unbelievable! (have African people ever had a possibility to decide for themselves)

 

And it’s getting even nastier. See some article bellow on which big media mostly don’t  pay attention but are crucial to understand what is really going on.

Understanding AFRICOM:
A Contextual Reading of Empire’s New Combatant Command

In early February 2007 the White House finally announced a presidential directive to establish by September 2008 a new unified combatant command with an area of responsibility (AOR) solely dedicated to the African continent. While there had been chatter and debate over a period of years about the form that such a military command should take, the announcement to proceed with centralizing military resources in Africa should not have surprised anyone paying attention for the past seven years 

Pharmaceutical colonialism in Africa

Big drug companies are conducting clinical trials in Africa with no consideration for ethics, the health of patients or the relevance of the drugs to the needs and the pathology of the continent. Nobody is testing traditional medicine to see if it works, and how.

Africa: EPA Means Economic Enslavement 

The new plan of the European Union to have economic agreements with her former colonies has not received much attention in terms of critical analysis especially by the civil society groups and trade union movements. The agreement represents another way of rapaciously and legally exploiting the resources of the third world countries especially Africa where most of the population are living in absolute poverty. In the first place, the goods to be exported to European countries are mostly agricultural produce with little local content and market value while European countries will bring in finished goods which are high valued. This definitely means the continuous underdevelopment of the third world countries. Therefore, there will continuously be wide technology gap, increased trade imbalance and capital flight from the countries.

WTO Proposes Slavery for Africa

“Full, untrammelled stewardry is the best available solution to African poverty, and the inevitable result of free-market theory,” Schmidt told more than 150 attendees. Schmidt acknowledged that the stewardry program was similar in many ways to slavery, but explained that just as “compassionate conservatism” has polished the rough edges on labor relations in industrialized countries, full stewardry, or “compassionate slavery,” could be a similar boon to developing ones.

Beutiful african music from The Constant Gardener

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The Kite Runner

With current US politics the future for Afghanistan, Iraq, etc seems no different than African ones. Permanent presence of troops, suportof their corrupted governments and juntas which empowers constant civil wars will leave the countries robed of natural resources, diminishing of local culture and people without a future.

But as Marc Foster  shows in The Kite Runner (based on Khaled Hosseini  book The Kite Runner) behind those games there are real people with real lives, real hopes, real sadness,… They are not a pictures in newspapers; they hope, fear, love, play, …

AFGHANISTAN MISSION CLOSE TO FAILING (Guardian) 29/2/08

After six years of US-led military support and billions of pounds in aid, security in Afghanistan is “deteriorating” and President Hamid Karzai’s government controls less than a third of the country, America’s top intelligence official has admitted.Mike McConnell testified in Washington that Karzai controls about 30% of Afghanistan and the Taliban 10%, and the remainder is under tribal control.

The Afghan government angrily denied the US director of national intelligence’s assessment yesterday, insisting it controlled “over 360” of the country’s 365 districts. “This is far from the facts and we completely deny it,” said the defence ministry.

But the gloomy comments echoed even more strongly worded recent reports by thinktanks, including one headed by the former Nato commander General James Jones, which concluded that “urgent changes” were required now to “prevent Afghanistan becoming a failed state”.
  

June 13, 2008 Posted by | books, Documentary, food, Movies, Music, Politics | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Psychology of power: What drives this powerful men? And where are they driving us?

The Metamorphosis of Narcissus (Salvador Dali)

This post is tribute to Bush’s visit of our country today 

Having power makes people more likely to act like sociopaths. People with power tend to behave like patients who have damaged their brain’s orbitofrontal lobes, a condition that seems to cause overly impulsive and insensitive behavior. Thus the experience of power might be thought of as having someone open up your skull and take out that part of your brain so critical to empathy and socially-appropriate behavior.”

The movie, The Experiment  (Experiment, Das, 2001),  shocked me a lot when i firstly saw it. I’ve heard as psychology student before about Stanford Prison Experiment, where Philip Zimbardo randomly assigned Stanford undergraduates to act as prison guards or prisoners—an extreme kind of power relation. The prison guards quickly descended into the purest forms of power abuse, psychologically torturing their peers, the prisoners. Movie is well done story about this experiment.

Social system determines our behaviour in a big way. Every position in social system has internally defined code of behaviour toward others and toward self as well. Was writing lately how our brain is great organ but so vulnerable and it generalise and simplifies so fast. Before we even know we are caught (see post: Brain makes decision before we even know it). We behave as we think that is required to behave on that position/role. Code of behaviour specifically role requires could be obtained from parents, peers, media.

Why most of the people tend to submise in front of person on position of power?  Is it conditional response?  Why there is so many stupid bosses who manage smart employees? What kind of aura does  bring position?  Subordinate or boss  has clear meaning of category and responses to it in our mind. We’ve been learned about this from early childhood on. You have to respect the president, you have to respect boss.  Why? Is he/she worth of respect? Of following?  No, he/she symply deserve respect because is a president, boss, …Pure tautology. Political language is full of tautologies as well.

What is their drive? How they’ve come there? What is their psychological structure? How would they behave if they would be put back, quite low on social system hierarchy?

Does position corrupt or corrupted people seek for position? Is it possible that lack of empathy and ego-centrism, lack of mature consciousness, enviousness, competitiveness and grandiosness of this people show that our civilization is ruled by nuts with substantial Narcissistic personality’s disorder? They are builders of social system and its rules and roles. Is that why the whole civilisation shift itself into narcissism? (see narcisstic personality disorder traits). The last video, guy hit by car, left on the street, is typical example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YQjdaEUcTAE

Video about Bush Family Fortune or “Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely.”(Lord Acton)

Very good article: Power is not only an aphrodisiac, it does weird things to some of us

Vicki Haddock, Insight Staff Writer

Why is it said that power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely? What is it about the psychology of power that leads people to behave differently — and too often, badly?

Those are some of the questions intriguing a group of social scientists, many of them at Stanford University and UC Berkeley. In the past few years, their research has zeroed in on what an intoxicating elixir power can be.

And one thing has become clear: The phrase “drunk with power” is often a dead-on description. These new studies show that power acts to lower inhibitions, much the same as alcohol does.

“It explains why powerful people act with great daring and sometimes behave rather like gorillas,” said psychologist Cameron Anderson, assistant professor at UC Berkeley who has studied power dynamics.

Some evidence also suggests a physiological component: that powerful people experience an adrenaline rush, not unlike that of someone in an emergency who is suddenly able to lift an automobile. Research on monkeys indicates that their levels of serotonin change when they move into the dominant alpha position.

“Disinhibition is the very root of power,” said Stanford Professor Deborah Gruenfeld, a social psychologist who focuses on the study of power. “For most people, what we think of as ‘power plays’ aren’t calculated and Machiavellian — they happen at the subconscious level. Many of those internal regulators that hold most of us back from bold or bad behavior diminish or disappear. When people feel powerful, they stop trying to ‘control themselves.’ “

So when movie star Mel Gibson told the police officer who pulled him over that he “owned” Malibu and that Jews were the source of all the wars in the history of the world, it’s hard to know whether to attribute his irrational hubris to the effects of power or drunkenness, or both.

Research documents the following characteristics of people with power: They tend to be more oblivious to what others think, more likely to pursue the satisfaction of their own appetites, poorer judges of other people’s reactions, more likely to hold stereotypes, overly optimistic and more likely to take risks.

LBJ biographer Robert Caro observed that power doesn’t corrupt; it reveals. Research by UC Berkeley psychology Professor Serena Chen suggests that people who are naturally selfish grow even more selfish if they attain power, while people who are naturally selfless and giving become more so with power.

“I enjoy teaching classes that get students to think more positively about power,” said Roderick Kramer, professor of organizational behavior at Stanford who has studied the biographies of hundreds of powerful people. He notes the flip side of power — that the lowering of inhibitions frees the powerful to shake up organizations, fearlessly challenge the status quo, do the right thing regardless of unpopularity, and follow a more daring vision. Could preacher Martin Luther King Jr. have so profoundly inspired the civil rights movement, could New Jersey homemaker Martha Stewart have become a marketing maven, could a former Austrian bodybuilder have become the governor of California without coasting on the inhibition-lowering fumes of power along the way?

This orientation is exponentially enhanced by the fact that others react differently, more deferentially, to powerful people. Henry Kissinger discerned that power is “the ultimate aphrodisiac.”

The result, as Kramer notes, is that powerful people are likely to find that every mirror held up to them says, in effect, you are the fairest of them all.

Journalist Bob Woodward tells an instructive story about President Bush in his new book “State of Denial.” Gen. Jay Garner, the outgoing chief of post-war planning in Iraq, had determined that the United States was making three big, tragic mistakes, including disbanding the Iraqi army. He met with Bush intending to lay it on the line, and instead ended up telling the intellectually incurious president that he is positively beloved in Iraq, while Bush jokes about how perhaps his next assignment will be the invasion of Iran. Garner says he would prefer Cuba — better rum and cigars, prettier women.

“Of course with all the stories, jocularity, buddy-buddy talk, bluster and confidence in the Oval Office, Garner had left out the headline,” Woodward writes. “He had not mentioned the problems he saw, or even hinted at them. He did not tell Bush about the three tragic mistakes. Once again, the aura of the presidency had shut out the most important news — the bad news. It was only one example of a visitor to the Oval Office not telling the president the whole story or the truth … The whole atmosphere too often resembled a royal court … exaggerated good news, and a good time had by all.”

The point, Kramer would argue, is not just that power reveals but also that it changes people. Such transformation explains why so many powerful people, imbued with talent, luck and leadership skills, tumble in flames like Icarus. The only way to truly harness power is first to understand what it does to you — in other words, the consequences of lowered inhibitions.

One of the simplest and yet most fascinating experiments to test the thesis is the “cookie crumbles” experiment. Researchers placed college students in groups of three and gave them an artificial assignment — collaboration on a short policy paper about a social issue. They then randomly assigned one of the students to evaluate the other two for points that would affect their ability to win a cash bonus. Having set up this artificial power hierarchy, researchers then casually brought to working trios plates containing five cookies.

They found that not only did the disinhibited “powerful” students eat more than their share of the cookies, they were more likely to chew with their mouths open and to scatter crumbs over the table.

Gruenfeld offers a similar example from her career in journalism when she occasionally met with Rolling Stone publisher Jann Wenner. She recalls that he routinely would swig vodka from a bottle and eat raw onions — without ever offering to share — “and it never even occurred to the rest of us, because it was understood that he had the power and we did not.”

Studies show that while people with less status tend to stand or sit more primly in social and professional situations, powerful people actually stretch out and take up more physical space.

And they take liberties in other ways as well, indulging their childish impulses. Some exercise sexual prerogatives over those less powerful, with the involvement of former Rep. Mark Foley with congressional pages being but the latest example. Some rack up a preposterous number of possessions: Among the bribes former San Diego Rep. Randall “Duke” Cunningham took was a yacht he christened the Duke-stir, while former Tyco Chief Executive Officer Dennis Kozlowski charged home furnishings to his company, including a $2,000 trash can and a $15,000 umbrella stand.

Other power seekers relish the psychological satisfaction suggested by novelist Amy Tan’s definition of power: “holding someone else’s fear in your hand and showing it to them.” The abuses at Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prison and other atrocities demonstrate a power effect documented three decades ago in Stanford psychology Professor Philip Zimbardo’s simulated jail scenario: Students placed in authority grew increasingly repressive and abusive over their “subjects.”

One study of the kings of England reported that those rulers with the greatest power were far more likely to commit crimes — from theft to murder — than ordinary citizens. A similar impulse may have propelled decisionmakers at Hewlett-Packard to try to plug information leaks by spying on board members and on journalists covering the company.

Another symptom of power is reduced awareness of the way you are perceived by others. Again, research shows that powerful people are less able to accurately read the verbal and facial cues of those around them, and thus more likely to misjudge how they are coming off. Instead of focusing outward, they tend to see others as merely orbiting around them.

One illustrative experiment asked subjects to draw a capital E on their foreheads with a washable marker. The hypothesis was that powerful people, because they care less about how they are perceived, would be less likely to write the E as if someone else would be reading it — and sure enough, the powerful tended to draw E’s in a way that was proper from their perspective but backward to onlookers.

This symptom of power can be ominous: As leaders grow more oblivious to the perceptions of others, they can become dangerously isolated and start to see people merely as means to their own ends. The parables of such isolation abound in history: Movie audiences can watch the downfalls of two very different examples in the French queen Marie Antoinette and Ugandan dictator Idi Amin.

Another axiom of the powerful is that they take risks more than others. Such risk-taking is often richly rewarded, but at some point overconfidence can be disastrous.

When Anderson at UC and co-author Adam Galinsky at Northwestern University undertook a series of studies about the powerful, they discovered that not only were people in power more optimistic about their odds of success, but they underestimated the dangers even in areas over which they had no power whatsoever. In experiments, people made to feel powerful were more likely to minimize their chances of being affected by an accident, more likely to gamble on a lower blackjack hand, more likely to reveal vulnerable information in a job interview, even more likely to engage in sex without a condom, than were people with less power.

“The bottom line is that people in power act in more cavalier ways,” Anderson said. “They really do believe that they’re not going to get caught, and they start to see themselves as above the law. And we know how that turns out …”

So what is required to remain uncorrupted — to handle power with grace?

The experts say that to remain grounded, it takes a deliberate effort, a sense of humor about yourself and a willingness to become more, not less, reflective. Illinois Sen. Barack Obama says he gains more insights into the needs of constituents by flying in coach. High-flying investor Warren Buffet still lives in Omaha in a house that cost $31,000, and continues to play bridge with his same cadre of friends. Presidents John Kennedy and Ronald Reagan were masters at a self-deprecating wit that served them well.

“Nearly all men can stand adversity,” said Abraham Lincoln, “but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.”

http://www.prisonexp.org/pdf/powerevil.pdf

June 9, 2008 Posted by | conspiracy, Daily bites, Documentary, Movies, neuroscience, Politics, psychology, Science | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

What do we realy see? Context Dictates What We Believe We See

Can you find the Hidden Tiger on picture? If not, click on  the picture. It’s so obvious when you’re told. You can’t not see it aymore. The post bellow is all about it.

How Believing Can Be Seeing: Context Dictates What We Believe We See

 “ScienceDaily – Feb. 19, 2008— Scientists at UCL (University College London) have found the link between what we expect to see, and what our brain tells us we actually saw. The study reveals that the context surrounding what we see is all important — sometimes overriding the evidence gathered by our eyes and even causing us to imagine things which aren’t really there.”

The Neuroscience of Illusion; How tricking the eye reveals the inner workings of the brain 

“By Susana Martinez-Conde and Stephen L. MacknikIt’s a fact of neuroscience that everything we experience is actually a figment of our imagination. Although our sensations feel accurate and truthful, they do not necessarily reproduce the physical reality of the outside world. Of course, many experiences in daily life reflect the physical stimuli that enter the brain. But the same neural machinery that interprets actual sensory inputs is also responsible for our dreams, delusions and failings of memory. In other words, the real and the imagined share a physical source in the brain. So take a lesson from Socrates: “All I know is that I know nothing.””

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Bellow video September 11 clues is a good example to test the theory. Some people claim that attack by planes on WTC never happened. And zillions of videos and pictures repeated over and over again where we saw that the planes were there…hit WTC. What is true? Shall we believe to Bush (see video below)…repeat over and over again …you got to catapult the propaganda ?!?! If bellow movie would be repeated so many times as official ones what would people believe than? Did people see or they’ve been told what to see.

I don’t wanna judge. Both could be real or no-one of them. But i can doubt …either on this video, official one or  on both on them… That is the privilege of the observer … Worked on commercial TV, I’ve learned one thing: Frequency sell (either talking about news or commercials).  Brains functions are result of evolution in order to successfully  adapt the environment. Many times brain simplifies, generalize, categorize …among zillions of stimulus. The stimulus (either true or not–brain actually doesn’t care) which is the most dominant, become anchor for the whole category. PR or advertising  guys know this wery well.

 

A rabbit or a duck?   (A plane or a missile?)

And funny video how  propaganda is done by President of United States:

                    …”You got to Catapult the propaganda “

The Political Mindby George Lakoff

Republicans, Lakoff says, understand how “brains and minds work”. If voters are fthinkers and not thinkers, you need to appeal to their emotions. One way to do so is to hitch a ride on a narrative that is already neurally well honed. Some narratives – for example, “rags to riches” – are affective neural superhighways for Americans.

The power of images: Marketing as doublethink

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Looking those lines….you know that are straight…but you just can not see them as that …cos the structure of elements blure your mind…

June 8, 2008 Posted by | conspiracy, Documentary, Movies, Music, neuroscience, Politics, psychology | , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Ties Between Memories And The Imagination – The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

Memory is the cabinet of imagination, the treasury of reason, the registry of conscience and the council-chamber of thought. (Giambattista Basile)
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Use of fMRI To Understand Ties Between Memories And The Imagination

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Psychologists have found that  thought patterns used to recall the past and imagine the future are strikingly similar.

 “Using functional magnetic resonance imaging to show the brain at work, they have observed the same regions activated in a similar pattern whenever a person remembers an event from the past or imagines himself in a future situation. This challenges long-standing beliefs that thoughts about the future develop exclusively in the frontal lobe.”

Watched this week The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, directed by Julian Schnabel.   About J.D. Bauby’s life. About memories and imagination.  As Jean-Dominique Bauby says in movie … “Other than my eye, two things aren’t paralyzed, my imagination and my memory.”

Watched before both his other movies  Basquiat (Jean-Michel Basquiat is “discovered” by Andy Warhol’s art world and becomes a star) and Before Night Falls (life of Cuban poet and novelist, Reinaldo Arenas (1943-1990), but for me The Diving Bell and the Butterfly is definitely his best. Makes you think after the movie and some scenes come as flash back after you. From the beginning the movie pulls you into main actor’s head and it doesn’t let you go till the end. Schnabel as neo-expressionist” artist/painter brings into his movie excellent visual aesthetic dimension which is missed in many modern movies. Poetical and inspirational. Sensitive photography of deep inner space. Art in motion pictures. Art of flow of words. Must see art.

The story of The Diving Bell and the Butterfly: “Elle France editor Jean-Dominique Bauby, who, in 1995 at the age of 43, suffered a stroke that paralyzed his entire body, except his left eye. Using that eye to blink out his memoir, Bauby eloquently described the aspects of his interior world, from the psychological torment of being trapped inside his body to his imagined stories from lands he’d only visited in his mind.”

From www.Salon.com: “The quietly stunning film of Jean-Dominique Bauby’s phenomenal memoir, “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly,” was nominated for four Oscars this year. They include directing by Julian Schnabel— an honor he won for the film at the Cannes Film Festival and Golden Globes — and best adapted screenplay by Ronald Harwood, who won an Oscar in 2002 for his adaptation “The Pianist.”

There is every reason for the film’s success. It recounts the remarkable life of Bauby, the debonair editor of French Elle magazine who in 1995 suffered a massive stroke. He slipped into a coma that lasted 20 days and awoke to find himself paralyzed from head to toe. He was diagnosed with a rare neurological disorder called locked-in syndrome.

A prisoner inside his useless body, Bauby, 43, could think and reason, smell and hear (though not well). With the only part of his body that he could move — his left eye — he could see and later learn to express himself. His speech therapist and later his friends would read him an alphabet, and Bauby would blink at the letter he wanted. He formed words, phrases and sentences, and ultimately, over the course of two months, working with ghostwriter Claude Mendibil, who took down word for word what he said, he completed his memoir.

The evocative title comes from Bauby’s notion that while his body was submerged and weighted down — impossible to move — his imagination and memory were still free and as light as a butterfly’s wings: “My cocoon becomes less oppressive, and my mind takes flight like a butterfly. There is so much to do. You can wander off in space or in time, set out for Tierra del Fuego or for King Midas’s court.”A few days after the book was published to rave reviews in March 1997, Bauby died of an infection.

Released last spring, the film is a visual knockout. Schnabel draws on Bauby’s fantasies to blast moviegoers with a kaleidoscope of dreamy images — some subtle, some banging loud — and an array of captivating music and sounds. The wonderful script takes the point of view of Bauby himself. The fourth wall between the audience and film has fallen away and the audience experiences the world through his eyes.” 

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Beautiful music from the movie:  La Mer. Charles Trénet

If memories and imagination  use the same brain structures, for me as a “sea” person this music and pictures and memories and imagination related to could immediately overheat them 🙂

 

June 7, 2008 Posted by | Movies, Music, neuroscience, psychology, Science | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Brain’s Gray Cells Appear To Be Changed By Trauma & Traumas Like Sept. 11 Make Brains More Reactive To Fear

I’ve been posted lately about Century of fear and how fear or Shock therapy affects us…here we have lately scientific results about effects on our brain… As psychologist by education and marketing specialist by a profession this things are so challenging for me…make me question all the time what is behind… what is real, what is the role of media, how an average human brain react on all this stimulus and define reality… see two must see movies bellow: Charlie Rose – “UNCOVERED” / FEAR & STRESS ON THE BRAIN / SI SWIMSUIT  and Uncovered:  The Whole Truth About The Iraq War.
It’s not realy so innocent what going on with our …human mind… how much politics or this neocons games effect our brains….memories, hormons, endorphines…will post next how real and imagined is close and what we see is what we get …

Brain’s Gray Cells Appear To Be Changed By Trauma Of Major Events Like 9/11 Attack, Study Suggests

This suggests that really bad experiences may have lasting effects on the brain, even in healthy people,” said Barbara Ganzel, the study’s lead researcher and postdoctoral fellow at Cornell’s College of Human Ecology.

ScienceDaily -Jun. 4, 2008 — Healthy adults who were close to the World Trade Center during the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, have less gray matter in key emotion centers of their brains compared with people who were more than 200 miles away, finds a new Cornell study.

The study — one of the first to look at the effects of trauma on the brains of healthy adults — is published in the April issue of Neurolmage. It follows a Cornell study by the same authors that found people living near the World Trade Center on 9/11 have brains that are more reactive to such emotional stimuli as photographs of fearful faces. Combined, the two studies provide an emerging picture of what happens in the brains of healthy people who experience a traumatic event.

The smaller volume of gray matter — composed largely of cells and capillary blood vessels — that Ganzel found were in areas that process emotion and may be, Ganzel suggests, the brain’s normal response to trauma. The subjects in the study did not suffer from any mental or physical health disorders. Gray matter, a major component of the nervous system, is composed of the neuron cell bodies that process information in the brain.

About half of Americans experience a trauma in their lifetime, and scientists know a lot about the effects of trauma on the brains of people with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but not about people without clinical disorders. And most people, Ganzel said, who experience a trauma don’t get PTSD.

Key brain areas that are smaller are also more responsive to threat, said Ganzel, suggesting that these changes may be a helpful response to living in an uncertain environment.

“We have known for a long time that trauma exposure can lead to subsequent vulnerability to mental health disorders years after the trauma,” Ganzel added. “This research gives us clues about the biology underlying that vulnerability.”

The researchers used two types of magnetic resonance imaging to scan the brains of 18 people who were within 1.5 miles of the World Trade Center on Sept. 11 and compared them to scans of 18 people who lived at least 200 miles away at the time. One type showed the gray matter volume, and the other showed the brain’s response to emotional stimuli (pictures of fearful and calm faces). Those who were close to the disaster on Sept. 11 showed more emotional reactivity in the amygdala, a brain area that detects the presence of threatening information.

Combining the brain data revealed that those who were near the World Trade Center had smaller, more reactive amygdalas, and this, in turn, was related to how anxious they were years later. Several other brain regions associated with emotion processing were also smaller in those who were close to the disaster.

The researchers also found that study subjects who had experienced other types of trauma (violent crimes, sudden death of a loved one) showed a similar reduction in gray matter and similar response to emotional faces and anxiety.

“This suggests that the differences we see in the brain and behavior of people who were near the Sept. 11 disaster are not specific to that one event,” Ganzel said. “And it turns out there is a very similar pattern of gray matter volume loss with normal aging, which raises the question of what role trauma plays in the aging brain.”

Co-authors include Elise Temple of Dartmouth College, Cornell graduate student Pilyoung Kim, and Gary Glover of Stanford University.


Adapted from materials provided by Cornell University. Original article written by Sheri Hall.
Magnetic resonance imaging of the brains of healthy adults more than three years after Sept. 11, 2001, shows areas that have less gray matter volume in those who were near ground zero on 9/11, compared with those who were much farther away. This is three views of the brain areas that have lower gray matter volume in the 9/11-exposed group. Notably, all of these areas (which show up brighter in this image) are associated with the processing of emotion. (Credit: Image courtesy of Cornell University)

June 5, 2008 Posted by | conspiracy, Documentary, Movies, Music, neuroscience, Politics, psychology, Science | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Our Daily Bread and The World According to Monsanto (Controling our food)

Matthew 6:11: “Give us this day our daily bread”.

Documentary Our Daily Bread , directed by Austrian Nikolaus Geyrhalter is must see wordless and musicless movie about mass production of food in 21st century. Real reality TV. In most basic sense. Pictures speak for themselves. No additional info, no moral judgments. It’s just the record of time we are living in. Very slow but makes big impact. Technology in order to increase productivity and profit. Like having a night mere and asking yourself when wake up what caused them. Animals as a thing, workers as a thing. Endless assembly line. Animals’ Auswitz. BORN TO DIE.

According to research animals have feelings, empathy, dreams… What kind of dreams have those animals? Do they dream of thousand and thousands of diets sugesstions how to loose weight?

Next video “The Word according to Monsanto – A documentary that Americans won’t ever see” is another must see French movie, first aired  11th of March 2008 on ARTE, how Monsanto (GENETICALLY MODIFIED food producer) and its close connection with government controls our food, destroying biodiversity and causes all spectrum of weird illnesses.

White house and Monsanto connections

 “The story starts in the White House, where Monsanto often got its way by exerting disproportionate influence over policymakers via the “revolving door”.   One example is Michael Taylor, who worked for Monsanto as an attorney before being appointed as deputy commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1991. While at the FDA, the authority that deals with all US food approvals, Taylor made crucial decisions that led to the approval of GE foods and crops. Then he returned to Monsanto, becoming the company’s vice president for public policy.
 
Thanks to these intimate links between Monsanto and government agencies, the US adopted GE foods and crops without proper testing, without consumer labeling and in spite of serious questions hanging over their safety. Not coincidentally, Monsanto supplies 90 percent of the GE seeds used by the US market.

Monsanto’s long arm stretched so far that, in the early nineties, the US Food and Drugs Agency even ignored warnings of their own scientists, who were cautioning that GE crops could cause negative health effects. Other tactics the company uses to stifle concerns about their products include misleading advertising, bribery and concealing scientific evidence. “

Two very good aticles on this topic:

Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World’s Food System

Hunger and obesity stem from the same problem — the corporations that sell our food determine what we eat and how we think about food.

Getting Past the ‘Protein Myth’ That Keeps People from Quitting Meat and Dairy

The way Americans obsess about protein, you’d think protein deficiency was the number one health problem in America. Of course it’s not.

June 3, 2008 Posted by | Documentary, food, Movies, Politics, Science | , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

The Science of Sleep

Another sailing weekend, excellent regatta, excellent results. Clear sky, clear mind.

Watched lately today  La Science des rêves,The Science of Sleep (2006) by Michel Gondry, director of Ethernal Sushine of Spotless Mind and Human Nature (both movies are written by Kaufman). This one is written by Gondry itself and it is just piece of art.

I can describe the movie the same as Stephane (Gael Garcia Bernal) starts the movie, explaining what dreams are:” Hi, and welcome back to another episode of “Télévision Educative”. Tonight, I’ll show you how dreams are prepared. People think it’s a very simple and easy process but it’s a bit more complicated than that. As you can see, a very delicate combination of complex ingredients is the key. First, we put in some random thoughts. And then, we add a little bit of reminiscences of the day… mixed with some memories from the past….” [adds two bunchs of pasta]. If i would have a gift to make a movies, i would do the same.

Movie is done as a dreams really are… in true Freudian sense. Bit of science, explained on a funny way, romance, blurred border between reality and imagination, dominance of inner world over external one, chaos theory, Parallel Synchronized Randomness, lots of creativity, emotions, real world versus artificial one… and mixed together into very very tasteful dish… Very surrealistic, like modern and funnier version of Bonuel’s An Andalusian Dog. 

In spite of varying interpretations, Buñuel made clear throughout his writings that, between Dalí and himself, the only rule for the writing of the script was that “no idea or image that might lend itself to a rational explanation of any kind would be accepted.”[3] Moreover, he stated that, “Nothing, in the film, symbolizes anything. The only method of investigation of the symbols would be, perhaps, psychoanalysis. Like Gondry says…MICHEL: No, I don’t believe in symbols. I have nothing to do with a book. You can define every image and symbol but it doesn’t mean it’s a symbol that’s universal. Like if you dream about a tree, it represents a penis? That’s bullshit. [Laughs]

Its great idea to use Stephane TV show as a position of an observer of his own events and emotions…just like in dreams where we remember our dreams as observers but we know that we were the main actor as well. … In science, the term observer effect refers to changes that the act of observing will make on the phenomenon being observed. For example, for us to “see” an electron, a photon must first interact with it, and this interaction will change the path of that electron. It is also theoretically possible for other, less direct means of measurement to affect the electron; even if the electron is simply put into a position where observing it is possible, without actual observation taking place, it will still (theoretically) alter its position.

Always amazed me that position: be actor and observer at the same time. But it is not only in dreams…we live the whole life as that…we think and act and feel, we observe our actions, thoughts and feelings, than correct them if they don’t fit into frame…as in Goundry’s Human nature, mouses are Pavlov’s conditioned to eat salad with knifes and forks at the table in order to civilised them. So principles are the same, just with different “rational” involvement.  

Watched on Friday on Discovery Science documentary with the same title: The science of sleep. It dealt not what dreams are but with the basics: Why do we dream at all? Why do we need dreams? Dreams occur in REM phase, very funny presented in Goundry’s movie “My eyes walk in dreams”.REM sleep occurs in all mammals and birds.  As it not known that animal have language structure (and all symbols categories due that); so dreams have to be very physiological need. Lots of theories have been done, but there is still no one way answer. Amazing…Phoenix has just sent pictures from Mars’s, but our brain is still so locked in mysteries. 

Are dreams connected to short -term memories, categorizing emotions into symbols of language structure?  Is dreaming like being schizophrenic, deprived from majority of external stimuli and building internal world with daily emotions and stored memories. What is the principle of reality cos everything is real for us while we are dreaming. What is the triger which switch at the end of dreams and tells us that was not real but dreams.

 Are dreams and reality same continuum, not two different realities. Like earth’s night and day cycle, once more and once less directly exposed to sun of consciousness” And what is consciousness all about, cos in REM phase we feel, hear, talk, think,…same as in awake state. Are dreams our own reality built from personally acquired symbols cos anyone can understood only its own dreams. We are producer of dreams and their observer. As in movie, sometimes only director understand the symbols and meaning of them.

Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep is normal stage of sleep characterized by rapid movements of the eyes. Criteria for REM sleep include not only rapid eye movements, but also low muscle tone and a rapid, low voltage EEG. REM sleep in adult humans typically occupies 20-25% of total sleep, lasting about 90-120 minutes. A newborn baby spends more than 80% of total sleep time in REM. During REM, the summed activity of the brain’s neurons is quite similar to that during waking hours; for this reason, the phenomenon is often called paradoxical sleep. This means that there are no dominating brain waves during REM sleep.  Most of our vividly recalled dreams occur during REM sleep.

REM and Near death experience & Out of body experience

People With Near Death Experiences Can Differ In Sleep-wake Control

“These findings suggest that REM state intrusion contributes to near death experiences,” said neurologist and study author Kevin R. Nelson, MD, FAAN, of the University of Kentucky in Lexington. “People who have near death experiences may have an arousal system that predisposes them to REM intrusion.”

Nelson said several other factors support this hypothesis. Several features of near death experiences are also associated with the REM state. For example, the feeling of being outside of one’s body has been associated with the REM state and the conditions of sleep paralysis, narcolepsy and seizures. The feeling of being surrounded by light could be based on the visual activity that occurs during the REM state, Nelson said. During the REM state, the muscles can lose their tone, or tension.”

 When the unconscious has something very important to tell us, it often dresses it up as a nightmare to make sure we notice,” he says. “The generic message of every nightmare is, Wake up, pay attention, there’s a survival issue at stake, and you can do something about it if you pay attention. The nastier the dream,” he says, “the more valuable is the information it is trying to convey.”

REM Deprivation

Four Days Of REM Sleep Deprivation Affects Forebrain, Long-term Memory In Rats

ScienceDaily, Feb. 6, 2008— Four days’ exposure to a REM sleep deprivation procedure reduces cell proliferation in the part of the forebrain that contributes to long-term memory of rats, according to a new study.

The study, authored by Dennis McGinty, PhD, of the V.A. Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System, focused on male Sprague-Dawley rats. REM sleep deprivation was achieved by a brief treadmill movement initiated by automatic online detection of REM sleep. A yoked-control (YC) rat was placed in the same treadmill and experienced the identical movement regardless of the stage of the sleep-wake cycle.

According to the results, REM sleep was reduced by 85 percent in REM sleep deprived rats and by 43 percent in YC rats. Cell proliferation was reduced by 63 percent in REM sleep deprived rats compared with YC rats. Across all animals, cell proliferation exhibited a positive correlation with the percentage of REM sleep.

“Several studies have shown that sleep contributes to brain plasticity in general, and to adult neurogenesis, in particular,” said Dr. McGinty. “Neurogenesis is a concrete example of brain plasticity, suppression of adult neurogenesis is thought to be important in pathologies such as depression. One current question has to do with the relative contribution of the two sleep states, non-REM and REM, which have very different, even opposite, physiological properties. This study showed that REM sleep has a critical role in facilitating brain plasticity. The study does not exclude an equally important role for non-REM sleep. In other recent work, we have shown that sleep fragmentation can also suppress adult neurogenesis. How sleep affects the molecular mechanisms underlying neurogenesis remains to be explored.”

The article “Rapid eye movement sleep deprivation contributes to reduction of neurogenesis in the hippocampal dentate gyrus of the adult rat” was published in the February 1 issue of the journal Sleep.

We took a group of young college undergraduates and we deprived them of sleep for about 35 hours straight. And then we placed them inside a MRI scanner and we showed them increasingly negative and disturbing images,” says Matthew Walker, who devised a study to look at what was going on inside their brains. “And what we found was that in those people who had a good night of sleep, the control group, they showed a nice, modest, controlled response in their emotional centers of the brain.”

“But, when we looked in the sleep deprived subjects, instead, what we found is a hyperactive brain response,” he says.

And what’s more, in the sleep-deprived subjects, Walker discovered a disconnect between that over-reacting amygdala (a region of the brain) and the brain’s frontal lobe, the region that controls rational thought and decision-making, meaning that the subjects’ emotional responses were not being kept in check by the more logical seat of reasoning. It’s a problem also found in people with psychiatric disorders.

“So you’re saying that you take someone with a severe mental disorder and a person without that disorder, but deprive them of sleep, and the brain scan will look similar?” Stahl asks.

“Their pattern of brain activity was not dissimilar. So I think what it forces us to do really now is to appreciate more significantly the role that sleep may be playing in mental health and in psychiatric diseases. And I think that could be one of the futures of the field of sleep research,” Walker replies.

Walker says most of us need seven and a half to eight hours of sleep every night.”

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FREUD RETURNS? LIKE A BAD DREAM

By J. Allan Hobson

Sigmund Freud’s views on the meaning of dreams formed the core of his theory of mental functioning. MarkSolms and others assert that brain imaging and lesion studies are now validating Freud’s conception of the mind. But similar scientific investigations show that major aspects of Freud’s thinking are probably

erroneous. For Freud, the bizarre nature of dreams resulted from an elaborate effortof the mind to conceal, by symbolic disguise and censorship, the unacceptable instinctual wishes welling up from the unconscious when the ego relaxes its prohibition of the id in sleep. But most neurobiological evidence supports thealternative view that dream bizarreness stems from normal changes in brain state. Chemical mechanisms in the brain stem, which shift the activation of various regions of the cortex, generate these changes. Many studies have indicated that the chemical changes determine the quality and quantity of dream visions, emotions and thoughts. Freud’s disguiseand-censorship notion must be discarded;no one believes that the ego-id struggle, ifit exists, controls brain chemistry. Mostpsychoanalysts no longer hold that the disguise-censorship theory is valid.

Without disguise and censorship, what is left of Freud’s dream theory? Not much—only that instinctual drives could impel dream formation. Evidence does indicate that activating the parts of thelimbic system that produce anxiety, anger and elation shapes dreams. But these nfluences are not “wishes.” Dream

analyses show that the emotions in dreams are as often negative as they arepositive, which would mean that half our “wishes” for ourselves are negative. And as all dreamers know, the emotions in dreams are hardly disguised. They enter into dream plots clearly, frequently bringing unpleasant effects such as nightmares.

Freud was never able to account for why so many dream emotions are negative.

Another pillar of Freud’s model is that because the true meaning of dreams is hidden, the emotions they reflect can be revealed only through his wild-goosechase method of free association, in which the subject relates anything and everything that comes to mind in hopes of stumbling across a crucial connection.

But this effort is unnecessary, because no such concealment occurs. In dreams, what you see is what you get. Dream content is emotionally salient on its face, and the close attention of dreamers and their therapists is all that is needed to see the feelings they represent.

Solms and other Freudians intimate that ascribing dreams to brain chemistry is the same as saying that dreams have no emotional messages. But the statements are not equivalent. The chemical activation-synthesis theory of dreaming, put forth by Robert W. McCarley of Harvard Medical School and me in 1977, maintained only that the psychoanalytic explanation of dream bizarreness as concealed meaning was wrong. We have always argued that dreams are emotionally salient and meaningful. And what about REM sleep?

New studies reveal that dreams can occur during non-REM sleep, but nothing in the chemical activation model precludes this case; the frequency of dreams is simply exponentially higher during REM sleep.

Psychoanalysis is in big trouble, and no amount of neurobiological tinkering can fix it. So radical an overhaul is

necessary that many neuroscientists would prefer to start over and create a neurocognitive model of the mind.

Psychoanalytic theory is indeed comprehensive, but if it is terribly in error,then its comprehensiveness is hardly a virtue. The scientists who share this view stump for more biologically based models of dreams, of mental illness, and of normal conscious experience than those offered by psychoanalysis.

J. Allan Hobson, professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, has written extensively on the brain basis of the mind and its implications for psychiatry. For more, see Hobson’s book Dreaming: An Introduction to the Science of Sleep (Oxford University Press, 2003).

 

The dream, the subject’s interpretation (Freud – Lacan interpretation)

The dream reactivates that which escapes forgetting and at the same time brings a work to bear on its elements, a secondary elaboration. As an effect of this secondary elaboration, “the dreams have already been interpreted once before being submitted to our waking interpretation”.8 A text results from this, that of the dream, which is, therefore, in itself an interpretation. Moreover, the dreamer adopts a position in relation to his dream: he exercises an interpretation of the interpretation. When Freud says that the dream is ‘the fulfillment of a wish’,9 he is also making an interpretation of the interpretation which is the dream itself.

            In The Direction of the Treatment, Lacan emphasises that Freud is proposing ‘the dream as a metaphor of desire’.10 Something has passed into meaning [sens] in the dream, and, from this passage, results what Freud has called desire. But, as Lacan takes it up again: it is about a ‘desire to have an unsatisfied desire’.11 It is a Wunsch, a wish, about which Lacan says that there are wishes ‘[…] pious, nostalgic, contradictory, farcical’.12 The desire that Freud isolates in the dream reveals the dimension of lack: of the subject’s want-to-be [manque-à-être] which presents itself as a want-to-enjoy [manque-à-jouir].13 Lacan takes up the well-known dream of the ‘beautiful butcher’s wife’ in order to show how a desire refers to another desire, how the dream carries desire to a geometrically progressive power.14 In this reference of one desire to another, Lacan distinguishes — in The Direction of the Treatment and in Radiophonie — two dimensions to this desire of desire which is ordered according to the laws which link the signifying chain: metonymic combination producing displacement and metaphoric substitution with its effect of condensation.15

 

May 26, 2008 Posted by | Daily bites, Movies, Music, neuroscience, psychology, Quantum physics, Science | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Century of Fear or Precaution as the name of the game

The flowers flee from Autumn, but not you –
You are the fearless rose
that grows amidst the freezing wind.

(Rumi)

Watched another Adam Curtis documentary…must see for every sceptical mind: The Power of Nightmares(1-3) (The Rise of the Politics of Fear)

 

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4602171665328041876&q=the+power+of+nightmares&ei=q14zSNzuLoiG2QLjyMTiCQ

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=2081592330319789254&q=the+power+of+nightmares&ei=ZV4zSN2DMY-i2wKdg4zUCQ

The films compare the rise of the American Neo-Conservative movement and the radical Islamistmovement, making comparisons on their origins and noting strong similarities between the two. More controversially, it argues that the threat of radical Islamism as a massive, sinister organised force of destruction, specifically in the form of al-Qaeda, is in fact a myth perpetrated by politicians in many countries—and particularly American Neo-Conservatives—in an attempt to unite and inspire their people following the failure of earlier, more utopian ideologies.

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And watched few anti-global warming documentaries (The Great global warming swindle (Accepted theories about man causing global warming are “lies” claims a controversial TV documentary),  Green House Conspiracy, Global Warming Doomsday Called off  and some others …

Precaution as a new name of the game…act upon what might happen (what is already told due political and media agenda)  and not upon what is real ….  

The common denominator: fear.. either of terrorism or global warming…just to keep people in constant fear of inevitable… politicians have to invent a problem to cure it and to defend people from it…if people are constantly occupied with fear of endless treat they sure can not think critical of something else. Even thought that there are no reasonable facts behind. They invent them, they promote them and they become a universal truth. How sadly.

No clear connection between Al Qaeda and 9/11 or to Iraq; no clear connection between CO2 and global warming or sea rise and global warming…but yet…it’s universal truth; its a big hype…kids are more afraid according to research of global worming than terrorism…but where are real facts behind?

if you doubt about terrorism or global warming, you are heretic or as they say ..it’s same as you deny holocaust …

I don’t know how much its true or not on both topics, cos i don’t know for sure who finances one or other media  but if doubting is almost a sin, we are back in dark middle age and inquisition… the reasonable doubt is a base of any further human development…

Scientific models or some partial information, promoted as a truth, and nothing but the truth makes me pretty nervous and sceptic.

=====================

And just today emerged: Army Radio had quoted a top official in Jerusalem claiming that a senior member in the entourage of President Bush, who visited Israel last week, had said in a closed meeting here that Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney were of the opinion that military action against Iran was called for.

================================

From The Power of Nightmares(1-3) (The Rise of the Politics of Fear)

Ideologist behind Neoconservatives: Leo Strauss   – unique America, who is destined to fight the devil in the world, the only good force in the world.  Strauss thought that myths are necessary to give people meaning and purpose of life and throught  this keep stable society.

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PULP (The Fear)

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When Franklin D. Roosevelt said “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself”, he meant it in a philosophical sense. But physicians know that the fight-or-flight response that protects the body from harm can sometimes backfire. “If you are terrorised by a God-awful stress, it can take you out,” says Richard Verrier of Deaconess Hospital in Boston. “I don’t think you would find a cardiologist who thinks it’s impossible to die of fright.”

May 21, 2008 Posted by | conspiracy, Daily bites, Documentary, Movies, Poems, Politics, Science | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Game theory: Freedom and/or rationality

Watched excellent BBC documentary The Trap:What happened to our dream of freedom of Adam Curtis (author of Happiness machines i was writing about last time). There are three parts and in first part he questions what is freedom all about, what is normality and how mathematical models modeled people and society. Is it true that we are selfish, isolated and suspicious human creatures, constantly monitor and strategies each other, to maximize our own benefit? Measurable predictable androids? For every measurement we need to set a reference. Who is the one who set the reference upon which people should be measured? Is it orchestrated from behind or maybe history by accident takes its mysterious way. Or maybe is mix of both. Did nature equip us with beautiful mirror neurons to understand others in order make the best strategy for maximizing our own result and not for empathy as a base for real humanity !?

Curtis starts with Game theory of John Nash  (Beautiful Mind) and how his theory was implemented as a tool in predicting Soviet reaction during the cold war (Nash’s paranoia resonated just well with paranoia of Cold War). And as every idea it found mysterious ways of implementation, far beyond cold war tool. Even faking results to prove its correctness in various situations by those who used it to justify either believes or actions (psychiatry, Vietnam’s war,…)

He continues with psychiatry which defines normality from Freud on. Dark age of psychiatry, colored by electroshocks, followed by anti psychiatric movement (Laing),use of game theory in family dynamics (love is just a strategy to maximize own benefit or dominance over partner). Shame of psychiatric diagnoses due to Rosenhan_experiment ( 8 healthy people were set to mental hospitals. During psychiatric assessment they claimed to be hearing voices that were often unclear, but noticeably said the words “empty,” “hollow” and “thud.” No other psychiatric symptoms were claimed, and apart from giving false names and employment details, further biographical details were truthfully reported. If admitted, the pseudo-patients were asked to “act normally,” report that they felt fine and no longer heard  behaved completely normally. 7 of them were diagnosed with schizophrenia, 1 with bipolar disorder. They were all given powerful drugs. They haven’t been allowed to leave the hospital. This was disaster for psychiatric society what lead to rational and quantified questioners to avoid subjective judgment. They set up a list of measurable characteristic (symptoms) on which people answered yes or no, either they have those characteristic or not. Questionnaires have been distributed to ordinary people. Evaluating the results they found that 50% of people have some types of mental disorders. Normal sadness for example became depression.

Psychiatrist started with screening process due to latent mental illness. They’ve spread a check list among people, so people used new definitions of disorders to compare their behaviour with “normal behaviour”. No elite needed to monitor people anymore, people started to monitor themselves by list of “normality”. And if not “normal”, pharmaceutical companies were more than willing to offer them magical Prozac. To be “normal” and constantly happy. And easier manageable.

Its amazing what kind of results some big ideas of liberalization  produced (Sartre, Fanon– liberalisation of itself through violence; Che Guara, Arafat…, suport of dictators to liberalize communistic countries, trainings of contra-revolutionaries, fake evidences, …)

So who we are behind what they told us scientists, politicians, religions, behind all this overwhelming social construction?…How is to feel normally behind “normally as they told and suggested us … Is freedom to heavy burden for current level of human existence or is freedom just part of broader cycle  and context and not the universal state itself?

1st part of documentary: F* you buddy

2nd part:  “The Lonely Robot”

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-1087742888040457650&q=the+trap+2&ei=0IorSPDKLo-ciALWpbTjCQ

3rd part: We Will Force U 2 to Be Free

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-7581348588228662817&q=the+trap+3&ei=7YwrSPShKojgiQKnk5niCQ

and Kraftwerk video: The Robots

We’re charging our battery
And now we’re full of energy
We are the robots

We’re functioning automatik
And we are dancing mechanik
We are the robots

Ja tvoi sluga (=I’m your slave)
Ja tvoi Rabotnik robotnik (=I’m your worker)

We are programmed just to do
anything you want us to
we are the robots

We’re functioning automatic
and we are dancing mechanic
we are the robots

Ja tvoi sluga (=I’m your slave)
Ja tvoi Rabotnik robotnik (=I’m your worker)

May 15, 2008 Posted by | conspiracy, Documentary, Movies, Music, neuroscience, Politics, Science | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

21 grams, Babel

Watched Babel. And 21 grams few days ago. Portrait of people who are not Happiness machines, for sure. Personally prefer 21 grams much more. It’s much more emotionally intense. Non-linear, fragmented stories act as strange attractor for mind. Great play of Sean Penn, Benicio Del Toro and Naomi Watts . Babel has some very good dramatic moments too.  Alejandro González Iñárritu is undoubtedly master of portraying personal dramas. And Brad Pitt , Cate Blanchett  and Adriana Barraza play well.

Although movies have different stories, but share same underlying principle. Like in legend of Babel. God strikes one day, unpredictably, and makes chaos in existing order. Life become fragmented, structure of language as symbol for order, broken. How vulnerable is human being when known landscape disappears, how hard it is to re-build new order from broken pieces. Innocence and illusions are gone. Life opens itself as fresh, open wound…and shows its most primal and brutal face. Things are just happening, without any of our control on it. Spiralling down. Lost within world, lost within self.

While finally re-collecting pieces back, is becoming evident that things are invisible connected, part of same structure and influence each other. Like Butterfly effect in Chaos theory, like quantum entanglement.

“21 Grams” (2003) (Salon’s review)

Nov 21, 2003 | I haven’t quite made up my mind about “21 Grams.” It has definitely stuck with me, like one of those troubling dreams that the first cup of coffee can’t clear from your head. It’s a brave and admirable film, but not an entirely successful one. Alejandro González Iñárritu’s first feature, the amazing “Amores Perros,” was an unrelenting blast of rock en español color and energy, a blood-drenched joyride through the streets of Mexico City that also possessed a startling, and heartbreaking, philosophical depth. In this new movie, González Iñárritu comes north of the border, and the results feel a lot dingier and a fair bit more pedantic.

Paul Rivers movie quote (Sean Penn): “How many lives do we live? How many times do we die? They say we all lose 21 grams… at the exact moment of our death. Everyone. And how much fits into 21 grams? How much is lost? When do we lose 21 grams? How much goes with them? How much is gained? How much is gained? Twenty-one grams. The weight of a stack of five nickels. The weight of a hummingbird. A chocolate bar. How much did 21 grams weigh?”

Babel (2007) (BBC’s review)

According to the Christian legend that inspired Babel, language is the barrier that keeps the world’s masses from ascendancy. Handily the world also provides director Alejandro González Iñárritu with an epic stage to exercise his talent for multi-strand storytelling. Occasionally though it feels a little too scattered, so it doesn’t pack as big of a punch as his last film 21 Grams. Still, this is an uncommonly raw and startling portrait of humanity with glittering performances all round.

Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett have one of the more gripping storylines as a US couple stranded in the Moroccan desert. A stray bullet leaves Susan teetering between life and death but it also exposes a festering wound in her marriage to Richard. The situation breeds a palpable urgency with Iñárritu’s camera marking a quick passage of time as it bobs and weaves between them. Equally compelling are newcomers Boubker Ait El Caid and Said Tarchani as rival siblings playing with their father’s gun when the accident happens.

http://www.webdelsol.com/SolPix/sp-reviews60.htm

Bibo No Aozora”
Writtern, Composed and Performed by Ryuichi Sakamoto

May 9, 2008 Posted by | Daily bites, Movies, Music | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Chemtrails or Always take the weather (and Welsbach Patent) with you

Food crises, Financial crises, global warming, falling $, high oil prices – what is the lowest common denominator?

“Julius Caesar and the Roman Empire Couldn’t conquer the blue sky “

Nice sentence from “Always take the weather with you” of Crowded house. But is it conquered now?  Watching CNN last night i just couldn’t avoid food crisis news; haven’t been able to avoid them while buying newspapers (Newsweek , 2008, the yaar of global food crises , Global food crisis looms as climate change and fuel shortages bite , …. ) I can’t avoid global warming news, although some scientist say that the Global Cooling comes back in a big way.    Can’t avoid news about financial crises,  high oil prices, falling $, coming recession,… than in commercial breaks: buy now, be greener, cars with lower CO2, secure your investments, eat healthy food,… Like one and the same continuing program without noticing that there are commercials.. Is it there causal relationship? Is it bad policy as they say? Or is it everything so very well engineered?

When media over expose some news i become sceptical. Very very sceptical and doubtful. Working in media i know pretty well how media ownership is spread and from where the money comes from. And for a big news spreading around you need very good bandmaster. And a lot of money.

We all know that we live in media constructed reality. So what is the reality behind media construction? Is the Bilderberg group and bank elite answer to that? If we going back to past recessions and believe that past recessions were very well engineered (as it well presented in Zeitgeist movie or End Game- Blueprint for global enslavement) why should be different now.  Its about making crises, solved them then and gain control over poor hungry and penniless people. I hardly believe that everything has come together so quickly and coincidentally. We know how big power FED has. And WTO, and IMF and UN. All the same policy.

Maybe many of this could be speculation, but knowing that media aren’t teling us the truth, we have to be skeptical and try to find the truth behind. To understand the cause not just the results. Just too many coincidences that someone would not recognize clear and horror pattern of lowest common denominator – power-play and control.

The story of chemtrails or Goodbye blue sky

Some says that chemtrails could be  solution to global warming. Most of them deny program for using them for cooling the earth (but patent has been approved, see bellow).  Must see movie Aerosol Crimes for everyone who is interested on this topic. Some other think that they are another weapon to control the weather in order to control nations (isolated drought in North Korea and isolated cloudy weather over Belgrade during air strike). According to some, long-term drought is the result of spraying chemtrails . Temperature drops for 7C and humidity for 30%. In addition to that health problems are reported.

Food shortage is the most evident result of drought, isn’t it. And hungry and penniless people are to weak to fight for their rights and think no further than to their stomach. Kissinger said that there are two tools to control people or whole nations: weapon and food. Genetically modified is another scary story (see video bellow).

 The Welsbach Patent

United States Patent 5,003,186
Chang ,   et al. March 26, 1991

Stratospheric Welsbach seeding for reduction of global warming
AbstractA method is described for reducing atmospheric or global warming resulting from the presence of heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere, i.e., from the greenhouse effect. Such gases are relatively transparent to sunshine, but absorb strongly the long-wavelength infrared radiation released by the earth. The method incudes the step of seeding the layer of heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere with particles of materials characterized by wavelength-dependent emissivity. Such materials include Welsbach materials and the oxides of metals which have high emissivity (and thus low reflectivities) in the visible and 8-12 micron infrared wavelength regions.

Inventors: Chang; David B.(Tustin, CA), Shih; I-Fu(Los Alamitos, CA)
Assignee: Hughes Aircraft Company(Los Angeles, CA)
Appl. No.: 07/513,145
Filed: April 23, 1990

http://www.earthisland.org/eijournal/new_articles.cfm?articleID=585&journalID=64

Jeff Ferrell article …

“I learned about U.S. Patent #: 5,003,186, titled `Stratospheric Welsbach Seeding for Reduction of Global Warming,” better known by chemtrail researchers as “The Welsbach Patent.”

The patent describes putting metallic particles like aluminum and barium into jet fuel. Then, exhaust from the jet engine seeds the stratosphere. In turn, those small metallic particles serve a dual purpose by: 1) reflecting incoming light back into space and 2.) helping convert the warmth below into infra-red waves, allowing them to escape from the earth’s atmosphere.

“It turned out that it seemed to work and so that’s why we had applied for a patent,” said patent co-inventor David Chang. Chang confirmed that the U.S. military did fund that research while he worked at Hughes Aircraft, an aerospace giant at the time. It would later downsize considerably and evolve into Direct-TV, which required some of the very same kinds of research and development.

In fact, Chang described several other military-funded projects where jet engine exhaust dispersed metallic particles into the atmosphere. “For instance, we were using it to develop targets for laser range finders,” continued Chang.

I then learned about that U.S. Air Force document titled, “Owning the Weather in 2025.” it details weather modification for war-fighting and describes putting carbon dust into jetfuel for dispersal as the quote, ‘most convenient, safe and cost effective method,” just as the Welsbach Patent explained. That method is described on page 15 of the Air Force report, originally written in 1996 as a study paper.

In September of 2002, then-Secretary of State Colin Powell even told a United Nations World Summit in South Africa quote, “we are committed to a billion-dollar program to develop and deploy advanced technologies to mitigate greenhouse-gas emissions.” Powell never fully elaborated.

And few may remember that the U.S. military used covert weather modification in the past. During the Vietnam War a top secret mission called ?Operation Popeye,? seeded clouds over the Ho Chi Minh Trail to create floods and wash out the enemy’s supply routes. Reporter Jack Anderson is credited with breaking that story back in 1971.

Geneticaly modified food

Federal reserve

CROWDED HOUSE: “ALWAYS TAKE THE WEATHER WITH YOU”

April 27, 2008 Posted by | conspiracy, Daily bites, Documentary, Movies, Politics, Science | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Accion mutante, Crimen ferpecto

Although i am not fan of comedies, especially American sit-comes, i dearly love some  black comedies. Alex de la Iglesia’s  first movie, (produced by Pedro Almodovar), Accion mutante , is one of them. Watched it many years ago and it so funny sci-fi horror comedy. Still laughing when i remember it.  Brilliant satire, with underlined critique of social system and its imperatives ( to rid the universe of pretty people and superficiality by terrorist group of ugly mutants ). In a future world ruled by good-looking people,

Watched today his next master piece, very original, absurd surrealistic comedy “Crimen ferpecto” (The Perfect crime). So much black humor, with social satire on consumerism and machism. Some twists in movie are so brilliant. Alex de la Iglesia is very talented and very underrated director. Just increased my love toward Spanish movies.

How can anyone in the universe not LOVE this film?, 22 January 2007
Author: rooprect from New York City

It’s hilarious. It’s poignant. It’s artistic. It’s even philosophical at times. I can’t imagine anyone not liking this film. “Crimen ferpecto” is a great surrealistic comedy along the lines of “Being John Malkovich”, “One Night at McCools” or even the masterpiece “Brazil”.

The plot begins bizarre, and from there it gets ever bizarrer. Set in a department store (the perfect metaphor for the human condition!), this film brilliantly weaves the themes of glamorous/plastic life versus the mundane/real. Trapped between worlds and desperately trying to achieve the former is our hero Rafael, a man whose entire life exists within the ladies’ clothing department. Somehow he gets wrapped up in murder, blackmail and ectoplasmic visitations from lovable corpses. Yeah, I told you it gets bizarre.

But despite the zany plot, there’s a very poignant & sober message that runs just below the surface. It’s subtle, but it comes to fruition during the magnificent climax when we realize exactly what this whole wacky movie is about. If you’ve paid attention to symbolism, metaphor, allegory and all that intellectual jazz, you’ll get it, and you’ll see how everything fits into place. If not, fine, you’ll enjoy the picture anyway because it’s just plain funny. The beauty is that you can take it at your own pace. Great film. Damn near perfect. Er… ferpect.

This year is coming his new movie (this time thriller) The Oxford Murders .  Haven’t seen it yet, but i wonder how good he is in different movie genre

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Music from the movie:Francoise Hardy – (English) Message Personnel

 

 

April 26, 2008 Posted by | Daily bites, Movies, Music | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pictures From the Surface of the Earth (W.Wenders)

Wim Wenders’s book: Pictures From the Surface of the Earth is just another piece of art. The beautiful landscape in Until the end of the world movie, i’ve been talking about last time and all visual and lyrical beauty  it’s in form of stil pictures and letters here. A bit diferent Wenders, as we know it, but equally brilliant. Today’s news: his new movie, The Palermo shooting, is in Competition on Cannes’s film festival this May. Hardly waithing to see it… (Lauie Anderson, Lou Reed, Nick Cave, Patty Smith probably in it, again.) Wenders  about movie: I can say, though, that I have never done anything like it”

Places (Wim Wenders)

Places where we spend our lives.
Places that we visit for just a moment.
Places we discover by chance.
Places that attract us by their name on a map alone.
Places we will never see again.
Places we can never forget.

Places we long to come back to.
Places that scare us.
Places that comfort us.
Places that make us feel at home.
Places we find repulsive.
Places that fill us with awe.

Places we dreamed about
before we ever got there.
Places we got lost in
and places that we lost.

Places condition us.
Places protect us.
Places destroy us

Places from Wenders Paris – Texas

April 24, 2008 Posted by | Daily bites, Movies, Poems | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Identifying natural images from human brain activity

 

Identifying natural images from human brain activity 

“A challenging goal in neuroscience is to be able to read out, or decode, mental content from brain activity. … We show that these receptive-field models make it possible to identify, from a large set of completely novel natural images, which specific image was seen by an observer. Identification is not a mere consequence of the retinotopic organization of visual areas; simpler receptive-field models that describe only spatial tuning yield much poorer identification performance. Our results suggest that it may soon be possible to reconstruct a picture of a person’s visual experience from measurements of brain activity alone.”

When i started to read the article i’ve remembered immediately the Wim Wender’s movie “Until the end of the world”. Wonderful poetical movie, great soundtrack, one the best of 90s.  Wenders made a movie 1991, 4 years after Sky over Berlin (which mesmerized me) an FarAway So Close(1993), which is sequel of Sky over Berlin. Until the End of the World is a beautiful love story within ScFi drama but far more than that. It’s a road movie, it’s changing so many continents with beautiful scenery, traveling around and observations above the world, shows futuristic vision of Tokyo, San Francisco, Paris,…

But beyond that is vision of future and personal travel within, folded into drama of son (Sam Farber, Trevor McPhee , played by William Hurt) who wants to give back his blind mother (Edith,played by Jeanne Moreau) possibility to see their closest family once again. Device (camera) which allows this was invented by his scientific father’ who worked for government which wants device back. Son is hiding in front of them and due to that travels around the world , meets the girl (Claire played by Solveig Dommartin) who has left the husband to follows him, husband (Gene, played by Sam Neill ) follows her… So much symbolism in this movie. No wonder why the rough director’s cut was 20h and original one 8h (source imdb)

Film ends in Australia (Aboriginal concept of dreamtime), where his mother and father live hidden in cave and experiment further how to record their own dreams, memories and watched them lately . What becomes obsession. Escape into dreams, into memories. And finally disillusion of illusions. 

So according to article above, 17 years after Wenders’s ScFi movie of watching memories and dreams , dreams might come true.  And his vison of future of comunication as well.

I like Wenders cos he is so no ordinary in so many senses, he is so poetical visually and lyrically. He said: “Sex and violence was never really my cup of tea; I was always more into sax and violins.”

It Takes Time
(Patti & Fred Smith,Soundtrack Until the end of the world)
No equation
To explain the division of the senses
No sound to reflect
The radiance of time
In the beginningest dream
Halls of disorder
Where we are swept to encircle dawn
Strapped in a low car
Racing thru silence
Trumpeting bliss
You could kiss the world
Goodbye

Standing outside the courthouse
In the rain
Seemed like a lost soul
From the chapel of dreams
With a handful of images
Faces of children
Phases of the moon
One little thing you get wrong
Changes the dimensions
Streets, swept memory
Diffused and lost
Like a prayer in the sun

Sometimes you can’t tell
Whether you’re waking up
Or going to sleep
Spiralling
Unnumbered streets


All the games cannot be yours
All the sights, the treasures of the eye
Does the divided soul remain the same?
No equation to explain
Destiny’s hand
Moved, by love
Drawn by the whispering shadows
Into the mathematics
Of our desire

 

April 17, 2008 Posted by | Daily bites, Movies, Music, neuroscience, Poems | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

“Where there is no vision, the people perish.”

 “City “City of God”… what a name for a place which could not be so radically different than a paradise. This movie (Cidade de Deus) is brilliant in many senses. It shows the favelas in Rio de Janeiro through the eyes of internal observer. Who lived there. No preaching, no moral judgement’ quotes of high or middle class. It just unfolds the reality of living there, self-organized structure which appears when people are pushed beyond conventional social system and its values. The violence, love, hopes for a better future, survival…

According to Wikipedia most of the current favelas began in the 1970s, as a construction boom in the richer neighborhoods of Rio de Janeiro initiated a rural exodus of workers from poorer states in Brazil. Heavy flooding in the low-lying slum areas of Rio also forcibly removed a large population into favelas, which are mostly located on Rio’s various hillsides. According to movie, government pushed unemployed and rural people into the “City of God”.

All chaotic systems tend toward self-organization. This one as well. But beyond social norms, the structure built up itself upon violence and cruel dominance of Alpha male. Since all were new, no clans of old gangsters were present. So the first ones were kids, younger than 18 years…

The last scenes really shocked me. The kids, no older than 12 years, took dominance over the favelas. it was joke for them, like they were shooting on PlayStation. lots of fun. But than, what kind of kids that  social structure beyond social structure can produce? According to some sources, those kids still have control over favelas today … http://www.davidalton.com/brazilreport.html

It seems to me that  our capitalistic society is ruled by the same principle, just on more noble and sophisticated way.

Vietnam, FED, Bilderberg group, September 11, Irak, ….alpha males, drug trafficking, weapons trade, civil causalities in the name of power and $$$ ….order within the order, order which orders all or strange attractor? When after many iterations you can recognise pattern.

Rocinha – the largest and most complex favela of Brazil. This favela holds 150000 people within 1 square mile.

Can Chaos theory  as theory of dynamic systems explain dynamics of social behaviour?

Chaos theory offers an explanation and description of the transformation of social tori and other strange attractors from quasi-stability toward deep chaos.  The short version is that when the periods of a system bifurcate the third time, they are in a situation where another very small change can produce great numbers of possible endstates toward which a person, a group, a business or a society might go.
The operative point to keep in mind for a theory of deviancy is that this great increase in alternative ways to behave is a feature of the whole system not just the single, acting person; punishment of individuals for trying to cope with such emergent conditions is an exercise in folly if not in mean-spirited vengeance.  And, for those in social philosophy generally, it is good to remember that even in deep chaos there is a great deal of order.

And, even in deep chaos, it is possible to obtain an uncertain stability.  A. Hbler (1992), of the University ofIllinois, Urbana, has shown that, if one can model the key rhythms of chaotic displays, one can control chaos even in the most uncertain regions of a bifurcation map.

An important point to note is that, in a sea of disorder, there are pockets of order. The emergence of such pockets of order is entirely unpredictable.  Ilya Prigogine (1984) won a Nobel prize for setting forth the principles by which new order emerges out of disorder.

Watched today similar movie The Departed  regards structures within the structure, voilence with its own rules. Well done (of course Scorsese), great actors (Di Caprio, Nicholson, Damon, …). Music as well: Roling Stones, Pink Floyd,..  Won 4 Oscars, excelent Scorsese’s movie piece.  It just hasn’t touched me so much as City og God where the players were mostly amateut actors. And where reallity heavely strikes you.

 

 

April 13, 2008 Posted by | Daily bites, Movies, Science | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

“I think it is all a matter of love: the more you love a memory, the stronger and stranger it is.”(Rotarian)

All have come back to memories this week.  My movies’ week, my week, my life. Erased memories, lost memories, precious memories. Memories as function of past and memories as function of future. In linear time or in cyclic time?

Watched movies and thought about,  I’ve  got myself finally trapped into. Came out of the blue, the song it is hidden in my mind but posses so waste place. It appeared again. Last night. After such a long time. “Porque te vas”. They’ve taught me while i studied psychology that the memories function as a map of the city…when u remember  tower of church, or some similar important anchor, the whole city will unfold to you…

This music is an early anchor of my love toward movies…  Cría cuervos (Feeding the Ravens) -1976 of Carlos Saura was one of my earliest…but remember just this one (except of some SFi :-). I was as about her age (Ana)  at the time when i first watched it (cos movies came a bit late in CE Europe upon Communist regime. and Spain has just got rid of Franco regime).  I have special affinity to Spanish movies from than time on.

“Ana is a nine-year-old girl who believes she has the power of life and death over those near to her. Her dead mother (Geraldine Chaplin) reappears as a ghost and talks to the young girl, who remains stubbornly mute. Like most of Saura’s films made under the fascist regime of Francisco Franco, this fascinating, ambiguously haunting tale camouflages controversial political themes behind a veil of hints, symbols, and parables. “

Loved this movie so much, loved that music so much with my kid’s mind. Watched it again during university …and today. I don’t know why it took me so long. I loved it on a same way as today. Strange. The same feelings, the same beauty, the same adoration. As the years haven’t passed by. When i listen this music, it opens so huge landscape within me. Like its part of me from ever. Seems i very much indetified with her. Looked petty much the same as a kid. Can feel myself the same as that time and the same as today… As I’ve never grown up. As i am the same all the time.  Glimpse of Infinity?

What are memories, what is personality consists of, what is grown up process if feelings stay the same. Where is the time in this perspective?

Correlation of States

There is another aspect of QM that Everett’s formulation makes too obvious to avoid – there is no one reality. Every quantum world differs from every other. Existence is relative. How can this be? Is our universe not consistent?

Again, a human analogy is useful. When you go to a party, you usually meet people you’ve never met before, whose worlds you have never known. Some of those worlds can be quite something, too! In physics language, there is little correlation between your states. By the end of the evening (interaction), you have some shared party experiences – your states are more correlated than they were before. If you never meet again, the shared memories fade, and your worlds slowly return to almost their previous separateness (they decorrelate). You’ll never be the same again, but you’re still the same you.

That’s what happens in the quantum world too. However, QM takes the concept to its limit – every quantum world seems correlated with every other world precisely to the degree necessary to keep the universe consistent, and no more. QM is not the uncertainty principle, it is built upon Planck’s constant. The many worlds of QM are very precise entities in their own way – the most precise of any physical theory we know.

The Arrow of Time

Another aspect of the universe that Everett’s formulation can help to understand is time direction. Time has two distinct attributes. Cyclic time is like a pendulum. It’s reversible, related to Planck’s constant, and is obvious from Schrödinger’s equations. But, time also has a direction to it, and that’s not obvious from Schrödinger or Heisenberg at all. In fact, many physicists whose student days predate Everett still consider the arrow of time to be a flaw of our understanding. It is, however, self-evident in the Everett formulation – quantum worlds abruptly appear, then gradually fade from existence, a clearly time direction dependent phenomenon analogous to the appearance and spread of ripples on a pond after a point disturbance. Things do happen to individual quanta in QM. 

April 11, 2008 Posted by | Daily bites, Movies, Music, Quantum physics, Science | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

“The reason birds can fly and we can’t is simply that they have perfect faith, for to have faith is to have wings.” (J. M. Barrie)

Watched Le Peuple migrateur (winged Migration)  of  Jacques Perrin again. Another wordless movie. Such a delight. Of colors, music, landscapes, … The cleaner is the mind the deeper is the feeling of the nature and closely connection with the world around. Visible and invisible. Makes me wanna fly.

“Our passionate preoccupation with the sky, the stars, and a God somewhere in outer space is a homing impulse. We are drawn back to where we came from.” — Eric Hoffer, ‘New York Times,’ 21 July 1969, regards the first moon-landing.

To be by your side (Nick Cave)

Across the oceans Across the seas, Over forests of blackened trees.
Through valleys so still we dare not breathe, To be by your side.

Over the shifting desert plains, Across mountains all in flames.
Through howling winds and driving rains, To be by your side.

Every mile and every year for every one a little tear.
I cannot explain this, Dear, I will not even try.

Into the night as the stars collide,
Across the borders that divide forests of stone standing petrified,
To be by your side.

Every mile and every year, For every one a single tear.
I cannot explain this, Dear, I will not even try.

For I know one thing, Love comes on a wing.
For tonight I will be by your side. But tomorrow I will fly.

From the deepest ocean To the highest peak,
Through the frontiers of your sleep.
Into the valley where we dare not speak, To be by your side.

Across the endless wilderness where all the beasts bow down their heads.
Darling I will never rest till I am by your side.

Every mile and every year, Time and Distance disappear I cannot explain this.
Dear No, I will not even try.

And I know just one thing, Love comes on a wing and tonight I will be by your side.
But tomorrow I will fly away, Love rises with the day and tonight I may be by your side.
But tomorrow I will fly, Tomorrow I will fly, Tomorrow I will fly. 

                                                                                  

April 10, 2008 Posted by | Daily bites, Movies, Music | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment