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Priorities, Strategies, Consumption Patterns, and Definitions of Success

Organizations tend to have different functions, ways of allocating resources, ways of perceiving and interacting with others, and different structures and strategies depending on how they define their goals.  To my mind, there are absolute profit-maximizing organizations, profit achieving organizations (whose goals are more broadly defined than their absolute cousins), cost coverage organizations (similar to public utilities and other enterprise fund endeavors), cost minimization organizations (nonprofits, for example), and effectiveness maximization organizations (similar to cost minimization organizations but, again, with broader goals and definitions of success which do not come at the lowest resource cost possible).

The study and classification of how organizations pursue resources and goals, prioritize, strategize, and structure themselves to achieve these goals, and how they interact with the environment and one another is likely critical to knowing how to observe, regulate, and manage these organizations from the perspective of governing institutions, organizations, and people.  These governing institutions, organizations, and people are critical to maintaining our collective and individual abilities to survive and potentially thrive on this or any planet in the universe.  The reason and need for this social, organizational, and individual management is because without these regulatory and monitoring processes and programs in place, the cacophony of personal and organizational action will likely lead to an excessive amount of chaos in our human world, thus destroying our very ability to act due to the excessive uncertainty and danger that would be created in such a system.  Social life would descend back to the Hobbesean jungle, and be “…nasty, brutish, and short”, besides maybe not even being possible for humans and all other living beings in the first place.

Knowing how organizations prioritize, strategize, consume resources, allocate resources, structure themselves, interact with others, and define personal and aggregate success also enables governing institutions to get their regulations, management and monitoring processes correct relative to each organization and individual, and each type of organization and individual.  If the government(s) of the world fail to get their policies, procedures, regulations, management, and monitoring processes correct, it will not only inhibit healthy and optimal functioning of all other organizations and people, but will also threaten the legitimacy and authority of the governing institutions, organizations, and people, preventing them from being able to carry out their needed jobs.  Failure to get policies, procedures, regulations, management, and monitoring processes correct may also signal the death of the governing institutions, organizations, and people, thus putting all of Earth’s inhabitants at risk of having to survive in a period of anarchy and excessive chaos.

All of this musing should be taken with a grain of salt though.  Organizations need to be studied on their own terms and this piece alone does not prove or disprove the hypothesis that is presented.  This is just a rough sketch of my present understanding and comprehension of organizations, organizational classifications, and behavior based on how they sustain themselves with resources and how they define success.  More research is needed to search for what types, priorities, strategies, and resource use patterns are present in the real world, with the classification system being updated, reassessed, and challenged constantly in order to create an awareness of organizations that would enable governments and policymakers to more effectively work with these organizations and people in order to maintain and improve human social conditions on planet Earth and, possibly, beyond.

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Of Ants and Humans

Ants, like human beings, have a limited capacity to know, comprehend, accept, and work with their social and ecological environments.  However, there must be something built into the ants’ brains that enable them to have some kind of pro-sociability with ants from the same colony in order to enable and facilitate communication and production amongst the ants for survival and well-being.  Without this pro-sociability and willingness to engage with and help other ants, the ant colony would not likely be able to survive, let alone to potentially thrive in its given context.

Humans have more of an ability to know their environments and their social and ecological conditions than ants do.  Yet there seems to be at present a strain of “broken” or “confused” human beings who don’t or won’t get their individual places within the ecological and social contexts.  These people, who are likely to have brains that are less inclined to sociability, wisdom, and awareness of common reality, populate our  societies and are able to wield influence within our societies through either the democratic processes or through the monopolization of positions of relative power and influence in our societies.  When people with this anti-social, unwise, and delusional brains get into these places of power or wield significant influence in our societies, they tend to wreak havoc on themselves and on others in the long term in spite of them believing that they’re doing the correct things correctly.  I wonder if ants at one point had to likewise evolve beyond their own anti-social and/or non-perceiving cousins within their own colonies to achieve the degree of success that they have on this planet and within their own colonies.  I wonder if we, as a younger species, are likewise going to evolve around these anti-social, unwise, and non-perceiving people or whether we’re going to be destroyed by them in the grand scheme of things.

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Data Mining Reveals a Global Link Between Corruption and Wealth

Social scientists have never understood why some countries are more corrupt than others. But the first study that links corruption with wealth could help change that.


The question then becomes whether wealth, or the lack thereof, is a cause of corruption or wealth is caused by a lack of corruption.  It makes sense in my mind that a lack of corruption leads to increased potential to make wealth because the appropriate use of resources (ie, using resources for their stated purposes) and the honesty that underlies that point could, in my view, make for more wealth than the dishonest methods and inappropriate usage of public funds would.  We could hypothetically run simulations to test which one is the case, similar to the Sugarscape experiments.  On the other hand, a lack of resources may incentivize those who don’t have much to take more from the public resources and use them for private uses (ie, what I call the Jean Valjean effect).  More experimentation should be done to tease this out.  Perhaps by knowing what they’re giving up by having corruption, the officials will be more circumspect about how they live off and take from the public till.

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Some Thoughts on Trade

The principles of free trade must also be balanced with the insurance of well-being within the given society.  Jobs will be lost as a result of trade and since the free market will not likely provide opportunities for retraining, it would behoove the government to ensure effective training programs to help people transition to new jobs that are more valuable in the context of the given global market economy.  This must also be done while ensuring that wages are not left to stagnate for the sake of businesses’ profits or executive compensation, which will ultimately cheapen the any bargain from the perspective of human society and prevent meaningful growth, health, and improved well-being from manifesting in the given society.  With these two caveats in mind, free trade, indeed, does ensure a certain degree of improved quality of life by making goods cheaper to the general public.  However, without jobs, there will be no room for people to afford the cheaper goods and without the insurance of fair wages, all of the benefits will go to the top executives and shareholders at the expense of the general public that the deals were intended to help.  There is also the issue of national defense which has to be considered when making calculations in trade deals, as a loss of meaningful manufacturing capacity can make a country by default less sovereign and able to protect itself from those who have manufacturing capacity.  The societies in question will have to balance these points when making trade deals that truly benefit everyone in their given societies.  Otherwise, it’s just a transference of wealth from the many to the few with no room for advancement and improvement for the many, along with a potentially weakened strategic position in the context of an overall global system.

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Steps to Take After the NSA Shootings, 3/30/2015

The American governments at all levels and in all places are going to have to come to terms with a few things.  The first set of things are their own anti-social, repressive, oppressive, and anti-democratic tactics and methods and policies that they have enacted towards the general public.  The American people cannot and will not voluntarily be marched into a neo-feudal serfdom without some form of resistance springing forth.  Worse still, the people who will be behind such a resistance will also be the least qualified, least able, and least willing to establish a functional and effective new order from the ashes of the old.  The second set are the anti-social, anti-progress, moronic, baboon-like group of radical right wing personalities and people whose anti-social, anti-progress, and anti-democratic tactics are what have brought us to the point where one is dead at NSA headquarters.  These are the fat cat millionaires and radical right wingers who are sitting in our Congressional delegations, posing as bankers and businesspeople, making a mockery of the American spirit and the nature of Americans throughout all levels of society.  We can either be cleansed of these people by ignoring them, voting against them, and by defending ourselves with lethal force if necessary.  Or we can continue to sit around and do nothing while they dismantle our entire society and environment in the name of profit, control, and some abstract notion of liberty that they’ve never questioned or seriously examined.

I’ve always suggested that we turn our attention towards ridding our human societies of these conservative elements and the more pragmatic economic elite who fund them.  The shooting at the NSA should be taken as a wake-up call for all Americans to unite against the growing right wing despotism that is threatening to erode our nation’s core integrity and to disband the dysfunctional and ineffective establishment “left” in favor of a new progressive state in America that relies on science, evidence, and the well-being of all people, not just the rich, as the benchmarks for good policy and good policy-making.  Financial wealth for wealth’s sake should not be the end all of a society’s goal, nor should we condone or accept those who can’t get that through their heads.

A government and its members are never self-sustaining entities.  A government and their members rely on the legitimacy, acceptance, and authority that is granted to them.  These are things which can be revoked with disastrous consequences to follow for all people, including for the governments’ members, when and if they are revoked.  Governments can fail; their existence is not guaranteed.  Best to continue working with the general public in a dialogue for the sake of improving the quality of life for people rather than act as if there are no consequences for your actions.  The sooner our governments in the United States and throughout human society get this through their heads, the sooner we’ll all be better off.  We need to eliminate the right wing by allowing them to eliminate themselves, and the world will be that much closer to being reasonably settled, even though it will never truly be settled in the long term or short term.  This will never be a utopian world; some problems will continue, old ones fade away, and new ones will rise.  What we can change is how we live, interact with, and respond to the changes and common reality, first, by acknowledging that there is a common reality where all opinions, hypotheses, and perceptions are not equal and should not be given an equal light if they prove to be unfounded and without evidence to support them.  The second thing we need to do is learn about this universe as thouroughly, deliberately, and accurately, specifically with regards to ourselves and to our own place within it relative to all other things on the individual and collective level.  The third thing is to apply the lessons in our daily lives, policies, laws, programs, and actions, such that we can live healthier, happier, and more sustainable lives as individuals within the context of our environment and our societies.  We can follow these three steps and all the subsequent steps and implications, or we can all collapse as a civilization and ruin ourselves and the world around us in the name of senseless greed and baseless ideology.  These are the options.  What side will you be on?

Think about it.

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Survival of the Adaptable and the Well-Prioritized

A society derives its characteristics from the collective behavior, attitudes, desires, hopes, dreams, wishes, and aspirations of every individual who lives within it.  Every society has a different way or logic about how they go about their business in government and in society, just as every person has their own strategy to achieve their own desired goals and outcomes. Sometimes they’re in alignment with the universal laws of humanity and of human society.  Sometimes they’re optimal, or more optimal than others.  Sometimes, they’re less optimal or less helpful than others.  Sometimes, it’s just a question of luck that they succeed or fail, with no control over what went wrong or what went well for them.  The trick then is to work out what is significant for the general public’s well-being (which is also the leading powers’ well-being), and what isn’t.  We can only ethically encourage governments and leading societal figures to change what is significant for their own benefit at the very least (for the public’s well-being at the very most).  We must then work to accept those things that are insignificant for the public’s overall well-being.  We must either respect the diversity of the societies of the universe, or we will forever be miserable and dragged into conflict, bitterness, and hatred trying to change that which will not forcibly be changed as well as that which is insignificant, irrelevant, and maybe damaging for a society to experience in their turn.  I hate to use this buzzword, but there must be synergy across cultures, societies, and peoples, if we are to achieve better social, economic, and technological conditions for our own selves, at the very least, for all others, at the very most.  The constant goal needs to be health, well-being, sustainability, and adaptability for ourselves and for the peoples of the world collectively.  Otherwise, we will kill ourselves seeking out the irrelevant, the non-existent, and the self-destructive.  The societies who are best able to pursue these goals while maintaining and adaptive and defensive edge over others will undoubtedly be the longest surviving societies with the most enduring social, cultural, political, and economic institutions.  May the best societies succeed.  May all others revert backwards or become extinct in their present or desired form.

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Hammurabi’s Code of Law

“When Anu the Sublime, King of the Anunaki, and Bel, the lord of Heaven and earth, who decreed the fate of the land assigned to Marduk, the over-ruling son of Ea, God of righteousness, dominion over earthly man, and made him great among the Igigi, they called Babylon by his illustrious name, made it great on earth, and founded an everlasting kingdom in it, whose foundations are laid so solidly as those of heaven and earth; then Anu and Bel called by name me, Hammurabi, the exalted prince, who feared God, to bring about the rule of righteousness in the land, to destroy the wicked and the evil-doers; so that the strong should not harm the weak, so that I should rule over the black-headed people like Shamash and enlighten the land, to further the well-being of mankind.” – Prologue, Code of Hammurabi.

These are the principles for which I stand.  Like Hammurabi, I submit myself to the conditions and workings of the universe (read, God) as discovered by scientific investigation and analysis, not by revelation and opinion.  I am just a human.  I am not likely to do much in this world for the sake of others, nor will I likely be successful at communicating these concepts to the leading classes of the world and to the working underclasses whom the upper classes have such scorn and disregard for.  I will always, however, be throwing myself in calculated and adaptive manners at the wall isolating humanity’s conscientiousness, for the sake of humanity.  We should never rely on written laws for constitutions for our guidance, but only on the discovered truths of the universe in which we live and must make our living.  There are an infinite number of possibilities for actions we can take, limited by practicality and feasibility.  These remaining practical and feasible options are then limited by what is actually healthful for us, which is then limited by what is optimally healthful for us.  The trick now is to experiment with methods of organization and political games, such that we can fine tune our society’s politics, such that the needs of the general public becomes the central focus of our political leaders, not the perceived needs and interests of a particular population or group of populations.  This is how you’re best able to maintain a system; this is how you’re best able to preserve your office, your institutions, your legacies, and, perhaps, even leave a positive memory amongst the people once you inevitably depart from this lifetime.  If you don’t truly want to be happy, healthy, successful, and able to be in office or have a lasting, sustainable, and perpetual institutional basis for society, how then can you expect to survive in office or ensure your own health and well-being, let alone, the health and well-being of others?  If you truly want to be happy, healthy, successful, and able to be in office and have a lasting, sustainable, and perpetual institutional basis for society, then why would you take actions which actually leads to the destruction and degradation of your office and institutions for any reason whatsoever?

I therefore testify to the world that there is a common reality which has natural features to it with unwritten, yet at least partially discoverable rules of cause and effect to them which we can partially manipulate for our overall improvement or our overall detriment as a collective and individual species.  The trick to staying in office is to follow, learn about, and abide by these natural laws, and then apply them for the general well-being of the public through adaptive, dynamic changes in policy, programs, at the absolute expense of the particular interests for the sake of the absolute and relative interests of the general whole.  There is no need to rely on the lawyers or merely eloquent arguers of opinion who don’t, and likely won’t, accept the natural laws and conditions of society.  The trick to dialogue and debate is to discover truth, in its most subtle, complicated, and simple terms.  That is how you preserve a society.  That is how you preserve institutions of society, formal and informal.  That is how you, as a policy-maker and decision-maker keep your seat and make it easier on yourself to justify your positions and get re-elected in the short term, which then condenses into the long term.  I for one have no more use or interest for the incorrect and unfounded opinions of others.  I think that, given a comprehension of the bad, while allowed to have tastes of the good, will help guide society as a whole to the same general conclusion in the long term, which then collapses into the short term all too soon.

I will stand for these principles and these facts from now, until the time that I physically die in this form, and throughout all time and space, for my own absolute improvement, or my own absolute detriment in this lifetime and beyond.  I stake my life, liberty, and happiness on this being actually the truth.  Let all challengers come to knock it down.  I will continue to stand by it honorably until it is actually and conclusively knocked down by someone more adept at perceiving the world as a whole than I am.  I will then, at that point, humbly alter my opinion to bring it in alignment with the new understanding of common reality and cease to support it.  That is how science works and I am only human.

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Why I’m Close-minded

I know that I’m closed to some things.  But it’s just silly to be open to everything.  Honestly, why should we take the opinion that the Earth is the center of the universe seriously, or that 1+1 can equal anything other than 2?  The same principles apply in our social, political, economic, environmental, and government worlds.  You make one configuration in government, in policy, and in funding, you get a series of possible outcomes, depending upon all the other conditions that the government does not and cannot control for.  But, if you make a different configuration in government, policy, and funding, you get a different set of probable outcomes which may or may not actually be better for all of our social units and the entirety of the universe.  Utility is a subjective thing, that is true.  But, as far as human beings go relative to all other life in the universe, there seem to me to be some things that are universal, objective, or both for life as we know it and for human life relative to all other life in the universe.  Water, H2O, is one of those things that I can think of.  The presence of one thing that fills this criteria proves that there may be other things which also fit this criteria.  It doesn’t matter what your brain believes or what your brain thinks should be done.

It is possible to look at objective truths differently.  You can look at the sum of two integers equaling 9 in many different ways (9+0, 1+8, 2+7, 3+6, 4+5, or the reverse for each of these values).  But these are the only whole numbers which can sum to 9 and in those specific combinations.

Thus, I’m left with the image of a universe wherein our brains and neurological systems are in charge of sensing, interpreting, perceiving, and working with reality first (before you make any choices that will change that reality for one way or another).  Our brains may or may not be healthy and functional relative to common reality, and to ourselves relative to common reality.  Some brains and neurological systems may be pathological to the world (for example, people who persist and refuse to acknowledge common reality and choose instead to invent or produce their own mental image of reality based on their personal motivations and preferences).  The root of all human activity should, normatively, be directed at trying to understand reality, accepting that which holds up to scientific testing and falsification, and rejecting that which actually does not hold up to scientific testing and falsification.  If there is no evidence that is provable for something, why should we simply accept that personal version of reality over our common reality?

Now, there are many ways to see reality that are accurate, just as there are many ways to add whole number integers to equal 9.  If you want to get even more complex, there are an infinite number of ways to sum partial numbers to equal 9.  But even then, there only the appropriate combinations of these partial numbers will equal to exactly 9.  The first number determines what the second number is going to be, and vice versa, such that you’re again, not able or technically free to add whatever combination of partial numbers that you’d like and try to get 9.  You can’t add 4.5 and 3.32 to get 9.  That’s just an axiomatic fact.  Therefore, while a plurality of perspectives is likely the desirable conditional set, it must be recognized that there are some opinions, beliefs, and perspectives which simply don’t match with common reality.  The template is reality; the authority is the universe itself.  No human may abridge, alter, or influence the discovered laws of the universe, as far as we can tell at present.  Furthermore, if we do end up being able to affect common reality through the altering and shifting of natural laws (as per natural laws that are subtler and deeper than the laws we’re working with), we must be extremely careful not to alter those laws in such a way that our very existence becomes untenable or self-destructive as a result of our tampering with them.  We could, in such a hypothetical situation, wipe out all of existence in our present form if we were to tamper with certain laws in certain ways, just as we may wipe ourselves off by killing off certain species in our ecosystems or altering the conditional state of our ecosystems in such a way that our own existence may be put in jeopardy.

Therefore, in my mind, we get a view of the universe that is highly complicated, complex, and interconnected discretely and across boundaries.  We are bound in this universe, as such, that we technically and normatively should not tamper, alter, or destroy certain aspects of the universe.  We are never, as it were, free from altering the universe or ourselves in the universe without consequence.  The same rules apply on the physical and quantum levels of the universe, so too does it apply in our social, economic, environmental, and political levels.  You are, to begin with, not able to conceive of everything that you can do (thus limiting what you can or may do).  You are not physically or mentally capable of doing everything and anything in the universe that is beyond your abilities to handle, even if you are able to imagine or conceive of those things.  Finally, even if you are technically, physically, and/or mentally able to do some things in this universe, there is a wide range of things that you should not do, from the perspective of preserving your own health, safety, and well-being on the individual and relative levels.  There are right and wrong answers in this universe; better or worse solutions to complex problems.  There are correct, better, and worse assessments of problems and situations, just as there are correct, better, and worse solutions to those actual problems in our universe and for our actual well-being.  There are criteria for our utility, health, and well-being on the individual and social levels which are relevant and some that are not, in actuality, relevant at all.

Now, I’m never going to say that I have all the answers to all of these problems or the solutions to every problem that we are experiencing or can possibly experience.  No human can be 100% correct 100% of the time.  All that I’m asserting is that these points are correct 100% of the time in our universe, and that we can experiment with them ourselves to prove that they’re actually true.  What I am proposing and advocating for, is that we switch over to a sustained, systematic review and exploration of our social, economic, political, environmental, cosmological, and integrated reality, such that we can make better individual and collective choices for ourselves in the universe relative to all other things.  Those opinions and desires which aren’t right and/or are unhealthful should be treated as such.  The real sin isn’t having an incorrect belief, but persisting in that belief when it’s been conclusively proven to be likely or definitively incorrect or unhealthful.  That’s all that I’m saying, that’s all that I’m advocating for, and I’m 99.99999999999999999% sure that this is axiomatic for the entire universe as we are able to know and comprehend.  Ignorance is what should be wiped out, and those who won’t or can’t come to grips with reality are the ones we should be labeling as those possessing pathologically formed neural systems.  The solution for these people is optional rehabilitation, if they’re not posing an immediate threat to themselves or others, and care.  I could be wrong too, very easily.  But I’m not going to persist in a belief just because I think or feel it to be right, if it is demonstrably the case that my opinion and belief is actually incorrect or mostly incorrect.  Again, the real sin is persisting in ignorance when it is revealed, not being ignorant in and of itself.  Some people are more able to be correct than others; some people are less able.  It’s only a bad thing if you continue in an incorrect view.

Such is my view of reality.  Such is the reason why I am closed to certain beliefs, opinions, and people.  I hope this clarifies my logic and ways of thinking for you all.  Thank you.

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Making an International Sense of Community

We will not have an global governmental system of any sorts until we first recognize the communal nature of all human societies and respect the sovereign right of all peoples to self-determine and make their decisions on a national, regional, and global level.  There can be no central leader, no cabal of powerful nations or people to rule over all.  Such a model is impractical and infeasible, and will likely be undermined in time by the many smaller nations, or else, fall prey to its own stupidity and purity of thought and reasoning.  The first practical step to creating a global civil society that has legitimacy on the bottom levels of human society would be to eliminate the veto power of the 5 Permanent UN Security Council Members.  The effect of this would be that all nations would have a say in whether to intervene in a given area, with defacto power and influence being turned over to the regional, national, or intra-national  levels, such that the locals can have ultimate control and say over what happens to them in their own territory.  We all have a stake on this planet to mediate disputes in such a way that they that it works for the people who are in conflict and to resolve common problems for all of humanity, such as resource consumption and environmental impact.  You cannot have a centralized, singular, and conscientiously homogenous body in charge of the diverse planet.  Rather, the world must be regarded as a community of peoples, not unlike neighborhoods within a city or clusters of people in an apartment building, with reasoned respect given for all person’s privacy with collective action being taken only in instances of severe violations of common human dignity and well-being.  Corporate private interests must be subsumed for the sake of the collective well-being and, in that check to personal ambition and prowess, the individual is better able to survive and be well on this planet.

So, my suggestion would be to eliminate the veto power of the Permanent UN Security Council Members and for the great nations of the world to scale back their meddling operations to recognize the sovereignty and dignity of each human being, at the absolute expense of corporate and financial interests, for the relative gains to having those supreme egos checked.  This is my conclusion based on my observations of history, human psychology, and sociology.  We cannot continue to afford to bully or act unitarily and capriciously against our own perceived threats, nor can we counter popular resistance in its home territory.  This is my general prescription for logic in International Relations, not firmly in any of the schools of thought.  This is a new synthesis based on the old schools and at least my own observations and interpretations of facts.  Test it, shape it, mold it.  In the end, it is always going to be power backed up by kindness and legitimacy that wins, rather than power backed up by pure force alone.  As it is on the personal level, so as it is on the collective.


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Principles of International Relations and Human Relations

If you’re going to govern over a multi-ethnic, multi-lingual, multi-religious, and multi-cultural territory, I think that you’re going to have to do one or more of three basic things.

The first, would be to make a common denominator that everyone shares; a singular touchstone of identity that everyone can feel apart.  This cannot be a top-down given thing, but requires communication amongst the whole population (meaning, all peoples from all populations) in order to arrive at that common denominator that cannot be determined in advance.  This is most similar to what the United States has done successfully over the years and least like what is happening in France or other Western European countries.  You need people to be one people.  Just because you may give up something as the host, doesn’t mean that you can’t preserve the essence of your society in a more general and less specific form.

The second is to include people into the political and economic systems, such that you don’t have people alienated, helpless, and potentially angry at whomever they have chosen to live with.  Just because new people have chosen to live in a given territory and are given a hard time within that territory by the native population, doesn’t mean that they’re necessarily likely to go back to wherever they came from.  Again, the American society has done this fairly well over the years relative to others, while we look at other societies with marked social divisions leading to economic divisions and political divisions.  These social, economic, and political divisions are toxic to maintaining health and happiness within a society, as we can plainly see when looking at societies, such as Nigeria or Iraq or Turkey, where exclusion or forced assimilation are the defacto policies of the society and the government.

The third option, is to part ways outright and to divide land with the recognition that violence only exacerbates negative economic, social, and political conditions for all sides.  It usually is more costly to fight and hold onto land that doesn’t have your people occupying it than it is to let the land break off and form its own sovereignty, for better or for worse, depending upon how all involved handle it. People tend to demand agency and, when that agency is denied, it tends to make things worse for all parties who are involved in the conflict.  We can look at cases, such as India and Pakistan and Bangladesh as ways to not divide territory and societies, while we can look at the Czech Republic and Slovakia as ways to divide territories.

These are the principles that seem to be generally at the heart of international relations, political science, sociology, and human psychology.  To neglect these concepts is to spark war, tension, and economic collapse between two or more collective consciences of humanity.  We see this in Ukraine at the present time, as well as in Northern Ireland and Israel/Palestine.  It boils down to two basic options.  The first is to welcome people into a society, develop a bottom-up approach to building a national consciousness while including people in the political and economic systems.  The second is to part ways, hopefully amicably, and let the two national consciences be apart with less territory.  You can’t force a people to be someone or something they’re not, anymore than you can force a single person to be someone or something they’re not.  It just doesn’t work out, and tends to increase net suffering while decreasing net well-being in the process.  This is based on personal observations from history, cultural geography, sociology, political science, and human psychology.  These have not been statistically tested in practice, nor do I think we can test them with the present data that’s available.  However, our consciousness of the past is growing all the time, and our awareness of world events can already happen at the speed of electricity.  We can either use the general information to guide us as best as we can while we collect and model data to make our conclusions more solid, or ignore the information that is already present from these different disciplines and from our world, and simply continue trying to fit the square peg in the round hole.  We can do a much much much better job at handling our public affairs with the knowledge and insights that we can have at present.  What in Hell are we waiting for?

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