What is your Halloween costume?

I am going as an 80's style olde skoole rapper, like maybe a reject from Heavy D who was too much meshuggeh to hook up with the Beasties.


Weather Report

Warm, sunny breezy, with a hint of grit from crumbling leaves, this weekend is an excellent time to catch the current meteor showers, and to experience a final evening with friends before one's breath begins to mist; forecast models are uncertain, but predict heavy thunderclouds and freezing brain-drain-rain.


'Tis the season to Vote The M*****F*****s Out.

Some have asked, "Pray tell, fair lady, why thou dost not protest this electoral season?" And I reply, "Forsooth, I cannot but think it entirely obvious that one must needs VTMFO, and so am resting on my sunburned-in-shantytowns-of-Guatemala confidence that a roadblock will be put in the way, "The Road Warrior"-style, of the runaway neofascistic juggernaut Mac Truck that is Christian-theocratic Neoconservative Corporatism."

I mean, really. You would have to be absolutely rabid, really just out of your mind with fear and rage and possibly some kind of mental illness such as denial that reality is reality (sorry, Bible-thumpers, but reality really is, you know, real--not like your fake hocus-pokery with the Invisible Cloud Being (TM Bartcop.com)), to vote for these people once again EVEN IF your Republican representative has done some nice stuff for your district. I mean, the basic point of Congressional spending is brinding home the bacon, so, you know, the Dems do a pretty good job of protecting us and creating jobs (objectively, you must support terrorism if you support the party that weakens our nation by weakening the economy and disenfranchising the citizens while whipping them into an emotional state in which they are willing to cede power to exactly the sort of imperialists that our enemies already claim we all are) and will continue to do so, if not in the form of longer jail sentences then maybe in the form of jobs programs that keep people from doing things that might get them sent to jail in the first place. Now that I actually respect the national Democrats, what with their business-friendly miquetoast weaseliness, but still they are bette than the alternative. And if you don't like picking between bad options, maybe you should have decided not to be born. So anyway I'll be at the polling station on the 7th, and You'd better be there too. I'm sorry but a symbolic protest against voting isn't like voting for someone whom you think ought actually to be in office (Pat Buchanan, Nader, Perot, The Body, Christopher Walken...)--it just means you abdicate your right to complain to me or anyone who did vote about the shittiness of the govt. I am tired of people thinking that whining is citizenship. It just isn't. So do what you have to do, but get your voting done. Otherwise you'd better not come running to me when your daughter gets gang-raped by her platoon mates in the communal shower of the barracks of her battalion near Kirkuk just before she is killed by mortar fire. I don't want to hear it.


eye uv tha tygar

i prolly aint mentioned the adrian legg whose gots the made guitar fingers + he bends a string like nobodys biz + he can work a tuning knobb like goddamn the crystal method on their first album his twiddling is so tight(YouTube), butt u know his work be hella new-age 'n shizzle so like take a listen but i do not recommend much considerations of a buy or nothin' 'cuz the boy do nots got a songwritin' talent. boy needs some composers'r sump'm.

bonuz: holla-ween aproacheth


Catchphrases to Watch Out For

So I'm at this party, right, and this woman (well, chick really, but let's not get into that, k?) in this extremely awful strawberry-blonde wig is talking about her lack of being able to get a boyfriend for more than about 3 months. So of course I figure she doesn't know that, you know, brain chemicals released during the initial "honeymoon" phase of a relationship tend to dip at about that time. I mean, figure why--three months of fucking is enough to (a) get preggers and/or (b) figure out if you can stand to be together more longer. I mean, if you are like a hunter-gatherer or whatever. So the rush of falling in love and all that may go bye-bye. So sad. On the other hand, the chemicals that cloud one's judgment may be clearing right about then, too, so perhaps at that point one can make a more sober assessment of the situation. My assessment of this person was, you know, frankly that she was crazy (she's like this actress or whatever) and she probably picked Bad Dudes--and not Luke Perry-type Bad, either. And so this vapid complainance was going on for a bit. And I had never met her before. But so some friends and I were at this party, which was a house party, and we were there on a thirdhand invitation via a boyfriend of a friend of one of the hosts who happened also to be an acquaintance. Also along for the crash were some unmentionable people about whom I shall defer complainance until a later date, if not postpone it indefinitely. Some matters are best left sweaty and calling for beer at the bottom of a stairwell. What I decided to do was, to say, "Have you considered the fact that you really shouldn't trust your own judgement," and some similar remarks in that line. I really just wanted to shut up this ultravapid line of talk, right? So but anyway she pulls this face like I thought you were hot until you didn't treat me like I'm special because I am so goddamn thin I could pick off pedestrians from inside the book depository flagpole. She says, I mean she's all like, "You don't know me!" and all of that. So she you know tried to walk away, and fortunately she didn't try one of those talk-to-the-hand moves because that was just too much and she knew it, but then so I bummed a cigarette off her and went to collect an ex of mine who was too plastered to stay off a roof. Yeah, I don't know her. Right.


Irish Evil.

30% more awesome than regular evil.


In boxes in bags and

Malvina Reynolds sings like that ol' angel, yo. plus Kev. Neal.on. izzle the shizzle. pluscharacterspluswriting doubleplus awe-summ. song for cred.:
little boxes on the hillside
little boxes made of ticky-tacky
little boxes on the hillside
little boxes all the same

there's a green one and a pink one
and a blue one and a yellow one
and they're all made out of ticky-tacky
and they all look just the same

and the people in the houses
all went to the university
where they were put in boxes
and they came out all the same

and there's doctors and lawyers
and business executives
and they're all made out of ticky-tacky
and they all look just the same


Sounds better in French.

Hey malePOVpr0n-luvrs: don't watch a movie with this in it:
"I'm speaking about my amazing hard fucking sex and you're thinking about pizza!"
It's about a Good Girl and her fantazie adventure and shit. By Erika. Not for the "manly." You fuckin' apes.



I've long maintained
that awesomeness accom-
panies only the young-

Also I like playing and
your life is not as good as
mine, so: HA!


Scheduled outage.

Until Monday (20061023).

Meanwhile, silence.


There must be something good

faraway from heeeeeeere....
i've got my leather
sheepskins on my back. vines
twining in my satchel--woven from last
year's reeds and bluefinger.
i'll find three or four signs of them today
i swear they can never excape
my hopeless vengeance
against your new husband
even though you never knew i
loved him again after all these
seasons, hunts, prarie fires, stampedes
and wars. and when i kill
him for taking you away, my
dear, they will flay me but
good--and you will still stay.
so my futile search is already over
you see. you see.


Today is a good day I think to watch a movie.


Hey person with whom

I don't get along, apparently:

Your sunglasses make you look like a bug. Which makes sense. Maybe you could buy some fashion sense when you purchase your sense of humanity? Or do they not sell that at Gap for Followers?

Where's your Coleridge now?


A request.

Here is button for your posts about politics. Sneaky Sis requests you use this power wisely. I say, fuck shit up.



A video for your consideration, in the
i don't know what to say zone.


Perficĕre: inaestimibilis.

"By authority of the Board of Trustees of the University of _______
and upon recommendation of the Senate
at ________
Mr. __________
has been admitted to the Degree of
Master of Arts in Philosophy
and is entitled to all rights and honors thereto appertaining."

... :D


U no 1t guD qu0t d00d3r, u roxzxorZZ!!!!

Wtf is with U humans YOUR A BUNCH OF DRAMA-WHORES. Because social intrique literally gets you off through your brain chemicals. And nobody said it better:
Myspace is the internet version of a Wal-Mart parking lot at 11:45 on a Friday night
--J-r0 t. m4gn1f1c1nT


Weather Report

Sharp, sunny, chill, blustery, 40% chance of anything at all, tiny flakes of snow pervade the zone of personal extent, neurotransmission will overclock, expect intense explosive dervishes and ball lightning in the social sphere; something Wrong is airborne.


with apologies to My Bloody Valentine

Hey my lovely cliche,
hey sweet cherries and plums.
Called twice on Sunday
just to say, say
I'm alone, but not for long
I've got some singing.

Why don't you enter
nice an slow
at my window,
while my head's on a pillow
my hips are like jelly
and I won't stop them.

Come on, come on, you
grow & shimmer like chords
within this clouded mind.
I'll bend towards what
we said we'd find,
for you're there awaiting,
when we came together.


What leads one down the garden path.

From my notes while reading Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations sec. 388-414.

Language L1 expresses the (set of) concepts C1.
“expresses a set of concepts”: all noncontradictory, coherent combinations of concepts are possible in grammatically acceptable sentences of Ln.
“noncontradictory combinations of concepts” are those which do not contain an impossibility of imagination or alternatively an implicit logical contradiction in any appropriate formalization of the terms of Ln.
Call such a formalization ƒ(Ln). [e.g. ‘x is a square’ becomes S(x) ]

Example of an unimaginable:
∃x(x is a square ^ x is a circle)

Example of an implicit logical contradiction (that is, a semantic one):
∀x(x is a circle only if x is not a square)
∀y((y is a square only if y is not a circle)
∴ ∀x∀y(x is a circle ^ y is a square iff x≠y) [steps omitted]

Second such example:
∀x(x is a number ↔ x has no color)
∴ ∼∃y(y = 1 ^ y is red)

Third (further) example
∀x∀ y(x is an elephant ^ y is a zebra iff x ≠ y)

Ln may express more, and more complex, concepts than necessary to express Cn. This includes concepts (e.g. cj) contradictory to concepts (e.g. ci) in Cn. E.g. ci = |square| and cj = |circle| we can express |square & circle|. Similarly for |elk| and |fox|, e.g. This leaves open the question just what a simple concept being “contradictory” to another might mean.

“coherent combinations of concepts” are complex or complexes of concepts that do violate the exclusivity constraint
It is impossible to express a concept cn two parts of which are such that:
being-F (= ci) and being-G (= cj) are mutually exclusive
[ ∀ x ∀ y (Fx.Gy only if ◻x≠y) ]
for some sort of combining function ƒ, cn = ƒ{ci, …, cj} or perhaps +ƒ〈…, ci, …, ck, …〉+.

Though note how the noncontradiction rule and the exclusivity constrain amount to the same demand for coherence or intelligibility. (“Making sense.”) Question: is it possible that there are concepts that it is impossible to express? "Expressions" qua literal, demonstrative utterances of a language probably cannot express every coherent noncontradictory concept of, say, Ce, the concept set expressed by my current (American English of the early 21st century) ideolect, Le.

NB: and Ln can be used to attempt to express some concept set Cm; I have used the alphanumeric symbology to indicate that, as in point 1, Ln expresses Cm iff n=m.
Poetry seems to allow the expression of complex concepts not expressable in Le. –A controversial claim. It is possible that poetry expresses cns which are inexpressible in demonstrative sentences by we limited beings—which is to say that it affords an alternative method for “expressing” some Cn. In a sense, poetry has a different meaning than prose, because of some feature of its structure, specifically that it associations of concepts available for ƒ [see above] that we cannot properly concatenate (before appreciating a poem). [Those are nonlinear or “nonlogical” associations… whatever that means.]

We have assumed that there are
Primitive concepts–some might call these “simple” concepts or ideas.
Complex concepts–the other ones.
These foregoing concerns commit us to the view that ∃x(x is a concept ^ x is structured).
So on this view I owe an account of how concepts are structured, and why (process).
Connectionism is an attractive move here...

One wonders what sort of vile epithets W. might have resorted to upon hearing such a claim.


one week, left right on

a ramblin' blind, a friend in need, an a soulful evening of rain
can i come home with you
baby can i come home with you?
yes id do anything in this god allmighty world
if youd just let me come home with you

baby let me follow you down
baby let me follow you down
oh id do any thing in this god allmighty world
if youd just let me follow you down
much thanks r zimmerman 4 whom everything whats old is new.


Older, but Revived Nonetheless.

(The best resource in the last few decades for understanding modern global skepticism is probably Barry Stroud's book. This essay is in part inspired by Ebbs-style semantic antiskepticism.)
On Putnam's [one-time] view of meaning, a word's meaning is not some feature of or thing in the mind, but rather an object to which the word applies. The thing to which the word properly applies is that which is typically and causally related to thinking/uttering the word. As an example, the word 'water' applies to (portions of) water. A word is correctly applied just in case the thing it is said of is indeed what the speaker (implicitly) claims it to be. So if I say that that puddle over there is made of water, my use of 'puddle' will be correct if the thing indicated is a puddle and my use of 'water' will be correct if the puddle is composed of water. The proposition I express by saying 'that puddle is water' is true just in case the thing about which I am talking is a puddle made up of water. This is of course an example of the disquotational principle, where supposing 'x is F' has a unique meaning: 'x is F' is true (when uttered by A) iff x is F (in the realm of objects to which A can refer). The reason for this seemingly odd formulation is that the realm of what is (can be) mentioned by words will vary to some degree with language. For instance, a brain in a vat under certain circumstances will be speaking a different language from our own (English) and will refer to (at least some) things such that a string of words will mean something different from that string of words in English so that the truth-conditions of what is expressed by the utterance of the string will be different for the brain than for we English speakers.

Putnam denies the Cartesian thesis that meaning is determined by a mental image by counterexample. Briefly, if A and A's identical Twin-Earth counterpart A* utter the same word, it may be the case that even though they have identical mental images what they mean differs [I derive this version of the example from in large part, Putnam's "The Meaning of 'Meaning' " with many thanks to discussions with Gary Ebbs]. Supposing that on Twin-Earth there is a liquid, let us call it Twin-water, that in all respects (in A*'s experience) is identical to the liquid H20 (that is, water) on Earth (in A's experience) although Twin-water is chemically dissimilar, and that when A and A* utter 'water' they have the same mental image: it will be the case that they are mentioning a (portion of) something different in all cases, and the word 'water' refers to different things despite the similarity of the mental images. (I will set aside complications and take it that this is sufficient for our purposes here to show that meaning of a word is not determined by a mental image associated with its use.) Putnam's view, very roughly, is that the meaning of a word is determined by the circumstances under which it is used.

Anthony Brueckner reconstructs an argument that superficially looks like Putnam's but has certain important differences. What seems relevant to me is not that he relies on the idea of sense impressions to do a great deal of work that Putnam doesn't have them doing, regarding (dis-)confirmation of whether one is a brain in a vat [A. Brueckner, "Brains in a Vat" 151]. Rather, the telling blow can be dealt at the point at which Brueckner tries to undercut Putnam by claiming that one is not allowed to assume that we are speaking English in making the anti-skeptical argument. His claim is that application of the disquotational principle to A's statement 'I am a brain in a vat' by A will not work since A would be assuming that A spoke English even though this may not be the case [Brueckner 164]. If something seems wrong here, good: it seems appropriate to ask now how could actual-world-interacting A not assume she is speaking English, and how B could not assume he is speaking 'English' (which we can call Venglish)? Finally, Brueckner claims that, under the conditions he has described, in which what language used to show that 'I am a brain in a vat' is false is unknown, it cannot be shown that we know what we mean by our words [165-6].

Now the actual results of Putnam's argument. The problem that Putnam's argument seems to me to raise for the skeptic just is whether the skeptic about knowledge of the empirical world can even raise the always-in-a-vat case as in intelligible possibility. As he says, the point is to consider "the preconditions for thinking about, representing, referring to, etc." (Putnam 16). But we have been assuming all along the the skeptic about empirical knowledge raises an intelligible possibility, which seems immediately gripping as the skeptic who employs arguments about dreaming seems to raise an immediately gripping intelligible possibility.

The skeptic cannot raise an intelligible problematic possibility using the words 'brain in a vat'. Now, since B's words 'brain' and 'vat' cannot refer to actual brains in vats, he cannot in fact raise this skeptical possibility, because his words just can't mean that. If B formulates the argument using the words 'vat', 'english', 'Venglish' and so forth, we can see how B fails to raise a skeptical doubt. Now since B's mental images are just like A's (and A is in our actual world) is seems that B can picture what looks (to A) like a brain in a vat, and B will call it 'brain in a vat', but B's words will be about a brain in a vat in the image. Similarly B will refer to Venglish in the image by 'Venglish'. Note that whatever theory of meaning one uses, for B 'Venglish' means a language other than his own, just as what A means by 'Venglish' is a language other than English (her own language). In B's realm of reference, 'I am a brain in a vat' is false because 'brain in a vat' refers to something that is obviously not the case with him. There is (ex hypothesi) no evidence that he gets that would indicate that he is a brain in a vat, but there is also no evidence that he gets that would indicate that he is a brain in a vat in the image (what he calls 'brain in a vat'). But given that one's beliefs (that are expressable) are limited to what one is able to understand the meaning of, there is no way, in the situation under consideration, for B to believe, and worse even to understand, the proposition that he is a brain in a vat, since he cannot mean in interior expressions brain in a vat, but is limited to meaning brain in a vat in the image. What this amounts to is that whatever one can mean by 'brain in a vat', this possibility is false of oneself.

For A, speaking English, can talk about brains in the image and about actual brains, and so forth. B can talk about brains in the image in the image and about actual brains in the image, and so forth. But it doesn't matter what language the proposition that one is a brain in a vat is expressed in–whatever the content of that proposition is will not be true. It seems to me that Brueckner gets himself into trouble by making a great deal of noise (only mentioned in a footnote) about language while trying to use a "metametalanguage" to describe what's going on in his argument (ft. 20 on 162-3). But we can express the idea in plain English: whatever it is that I mean when I say 'I am a brain in a vat', I am not that, so the proposition is false. The application of the disquotational principle seems to fail because the skeptic about knowledge of one's own beliefs tries to look at the statement 'I am a brain in a vat' from a "metaliguistic" standpoint, while not realizing that, even from that standpoint the proposition that one is a brain in a vat must be false, again because whatever is meant by 'brain in a vat' is not the case of one's own "brain". What this shows, if it is right, is that the skeptic about knowledge of one's own beliefs cannot raise an intelligible alternative to the case in which I do know what my words mean.

A further step is required to see why. B is limited to understanding (and believing to be true or false) just that which B can express. This does not include the proposition that B is a brain in a vat, but does include the proposition that B is a brain in a vat in the image, which B would express by saying 'brain in a vat'. Suppose we assume that A can by analogy believe herself to possibly be in a situation akin to B's. Then what we would be saying is that she, unlike B, can understand some kind of (imagined) uberwald-vats in which her uberwald-brain resides. However, B can imagine things that appear to B just as these imaginings appear to A, and he can say 'uberwald-vats' and so forth, but he cannot mean what A in the actual world means by them. What this seems to show is not that we have superior powers of intuition and insight, but rather that we do not understand what we imagine. That is to say, if the situation is really supposed to be analogous (one, after all, proposed to be "a brain in a vat"), then what the skeptic about empirical knowledge attempts to assert as a possibility is unintelligible; and the skeptic about knowledge of one's own beliefs relies on this alternative. A skeptic in a vat could not raise the possibility that B is a brain in a vat, because that would be unintelligible to both skeptic and B. Similarly, the skeptic about knowledge of one's own beliefs cannot raise the possibility that she thinks she understands related (somehow) to "uberwald-vats" and so forth. 'I am a brain in a vat' is unintelligible or false (no just false since the string of words might fail to express something one can understand). So in order to get this skeptical argument off the ground–based on the "results" of Putnam's argument as Brueckner construes it–the skeptic now has to assert that what is shown to be unintelligible, and necessarily so, is in fact intelligible. And even assertion of a super-knower cannot make that less than utterly wrong.

[This discussion does some violence to Brueckner in the sense that his argument is not fuly exegized with quotations and cetera, but any careful reader of the work should see that my interpretation is not malicious, quite the opposite. Of course I do (I now realize) have certain systematic reasons for wanting some form of epistemic externalism to work with.]


on a cape

hex uv sun up in this, what. leefs changin &c. so get money, squirrels.
sweet euphoria, mine is tha heart u stole
touched & broken are tha things u love
using stars to light yer candles
warms my face, but i cant remember yers
gone are u dandelions, falling like mine
falling like daydream mangos
diving swallows
save my love for tha lasting one
thx mr cornell.


we dont exist

thx best sad lady evr.
It's damned if you don't and it's damned if you do
Be true 'cause they'll lock you up in a sad sad zoo
Oh hidy hidy hidy what cha tryin to prove
By hidy hidy hiding you're not worth a thing