Digitized, shopped, chopped, and hacked

[Photo source: tribunkaltim.svg]

By Joe America

Technology has changed the world, and will do so even more in the future. Our simple lives are gone. Our old values are history.

Now we must deal with global cyber forces like Wikileaks, Facebook, Amazon, and Google, and State cyber hackers from Russia, China, and the United States, and private hackers and extortionists after our money, and local autocrats enforcing their will using internet armies. There are no boundaries for these activities, no restraints.

The playing field is a tangled web and out of our control as devices and systems connect according to technology we can’t possibly understand. Run by actors we may not even know, and certainly cannot manage.

Our privacy is gone.

My e-mails to my family in the US pass through American spy filters. Malicious hackers repeatedly try to get into my computers. Trolls interject their obnoxious stupidity into my earnest conversations on line.

There is no such thing as loyalty.

Apple stores our data on Google. Banks are shipping our most sensitive information to vendors, whoever the hell they are. Our locations are recorded real time by who knows who. Facebook tracks all our keystrokes and uses them in algorithms that betray us. Facebook knows more about us than we do, spreads our names across the internet, and jams advertising at us custom tailored to the profiles they understand but we do not.

We are digitized, shopped, chopped and hacked.

If you think this is just hypothetical, alarmist, or science class stuff, think again. Twist your head sideways and look at what has happened in the Philippines. The Philippines was taken over by a regional rebel force that holds no regard for the laws of the nation. It used, and continues to use, cyber-armies funded and managed by unknown sources of money. And now our taxes. This rebel force has no morality, no allegiance, no respect for what we stood for, up to the point of their conquest. They are after power, money, and longevity. Their band is strong. It is dominant. It may be forever.

Tilt your head again and you can see that we are heading back to the stone ages when savages ruled by raw power. There were no books then, no rules, no laws, no concepts of morality, no definition of ‘good’. Just survival. And dominance.

This is all better than a lot of movie plots, I have to admit. It is elegant. Michael Crichton may have designed the whole damn thing.

I tend to think that moral voices in the Philippines will eventually be silenced. Only obedient voices will be allowed. I would ask my bookie to cast the odds on this but he long ago exclaimed “screw this shit!” and fled for Sicily.

If there is a rebel effort undertaken to overthrow the current rebel government, I imagine it will originate offshore. Domestic initiatives will be snuffed out by cyber snoops, by list makers and executioners. If outside rebellion does not happen, the Philippines will become a simple meaningless chip in the struggle between monster nations for the rare-earth minerals that keep technology robust . . . and for the labor that can do their mindless sweat work. Those beautiful green hills? Dirt. Mine tailings. Benham Rise? Chinese. NRA forces? Tracked down by heat-seeking drones and eradicated.

It will take superior technological minds to run rebellion in the future. To escape the probes of the state actors and private snoops. To wend their way into information networks to broadcast opposing ideas or take down cyber-infrastructure.

I can imagine offshore rebels uniting with state actors like the US to build better ways to make trouble. The rebels will give the states deniability and the states will give the rebels technology tools.

But one thing is for sure. We will never go back to the days of simplicity when our lives were our own to live. When we took vacations and there were no mining trucks to destroy the serenity. When we got on line and chatted with friends and family, unconcerned that someone might eavesdrop or scoop up our keystrokes. When GPS and location services were toys we played with, awestruck at how smart and advanced we were becoming, as humans.

No, no.

We are not smart, and we are not advanced.

We are merely digitized. Shopped. Chopped. And hacked.

And looking for caves where we can get a little privacy.


137 Responses to “Digitized, shopped, chopped, and hacked”
  1. karlgarcia says:

    All you say here is true.It is alarming, but it is not alarmist.

    Senate investigations here broadcasting sms transcripts to humiliate some parties in the name of the truth.

    Private group messages are monitored for locker room talk.

    Executive sessions can be captured by listening equipment. If the unauthorized unquotable does not give the info.

    • And personal medical records are no longer private (psychology profiles). I look at information as water, maybe like swimming at the beach. Occasionally a rip tide pulls us into deep ocean. The best approach is to remain calm and swim sideways. Not fight it. Then come back to shore. Relaxation and acceptance are keys to survival.

      • karlgarcia says:

        Very true! Thanks. Let us learn to swim sideways because foreward and backward won’t work in dealing with life’s riptides.

  2. NHerrera says:

    Digitized, shopped, chopped, and hacked — and ground or powdered with help of the third telco through which your thoughts, via your trusty Huawei, are analyzed, categorized, ingeniously, surreptitiously influenced (no more need for Uson and her army of Facebook trolls) and you will happily sing Hosannas to the candidates of one party, including sing Hosannas to our Master from the North. Brave new world we will have.

  3. arlene says:

    “We are digitized, shopped, chopped and hacked.” Crazy world there is in our midst. I am sometimes afraid what the future holds for our kids and grandchildren.

    Good morning Joeam, good morning to you too Karl.

  4. Those who want for PH to be a province of China need to welcome the realities illustrated in the article below. Yes. Your private messages can be used against you. No. You can’t fight the Chinese government.

    • arlene says:

      Just wondering, our ancestors fought tooth and nail to gain our freedom and independence. Why would we want to be a province of China? It’s unthinkable.

    • karlgarcia says:

      Even Daimler apologized for an ad with the quote from the Dala-Lama.
      Investing in China for their 1 billion strong market may not be a wise decision.

    • NHerrera says:

      That is a logical development and follow-through by the New Master of the World. An aside: what a contrast — the soft-spoken, relaxed, and apparently healthy Xi, who need only wink and his wishes are obeyed; compared to the harassed, burger-fed, may be not-too-healthy Trump who has to spend time tweeting without his tweet-wishes not being acted upon. Oh boy.

      • NHerrera says:

        We spend time criticizing about the losses from our traditional sources of funds, goods, goodwill, hence the continued high trust rating of these traditional countries and the very low trust rating of China. But not to worry. Everything will be replaced by a Chinese equivalent, and the trust rating will be reversed. That is why, as if on cue, Roque the monkey of the ventriloquist said “give China a chance, with time the trust rating of China will go up.” The implementation of The Plan is on course.

      • “healthy Xi” – In the Filipino context, “healthy” often means fat.. but probably also in the Chinese context, if one is to look at a particular brand of soy sauce.. interestingly it is usually the Chinese buddhas that are fat while Indian, Thai etc. buddhas are thin..

  5. josephivo says:

    AI, artificial intelligence, you left out the most important development. Large data, deep learning. Computers develop algorithms on their own, without we poor humans understanding.

    Who will keep them in the “box” so we can use the emergency stop if needed? Who will guarantee they follow a value system that favors us, all of us? These “who’s” have to be global to prevent a rogue nation to bypass them.

    • Yes, good point. Deep data. Lovely expression. I suppose it is possible to program a value system, but Facebook is doing a lousy job of it. That’s because there are a lot of unintended consequences. I read that self-driving autos and trucks will eventually drive drivers off the highways. So if you enjoy rippin’ with a stick shift, as I do, better have your fun now.

      • sonny says:

        All this seems to have been well-anticipated by many in the ’60s, especially Arthur Clarke in 2001, A SPACE ODYSSEY.

        “HAL 9000 is a fictional character and the main antagonist in Arthur C. Clarke’s Space Odyssey series. First appearing in 2001: A Space Odyssey, HAL (Heuristically programmed ALgorithmic computer) is a sentient computer (or artificial general intelligence) that controls the systems of the Discovery One spacecraft … HAL is capable of speech, speech recognition, facial recognition, natural language processing, lip reading, art appreciation, interpreting emotional behaviours, automated reasoning ,..” — wiki

        Included a touch of computing competition: H A L is 1 letter each removed from I B M. 🙂
        (makes me feel a little bit younger). HAL was created by Burrough’s Corp & U of Illinois ILIAC computer series. Just some trivia.

        Reflection: the binary (power of 2) number system makes possible our communication and technology of automatons. When that number system gets a soul then I’ll worry. Until then our fears are “just us.” 😦

    • josephivo says:

      AI and Power – power as the ability to make one behave differently. There is so much information about me in the cloud that a little bit of analysis will teach you have easy it is to influence me. Just push the right buttons and I will change. AI’s are used already to make me buy a different soap bar or influence my political views.

      But what if a future AI will be instructed to maximize my happiness? It will conclude swiftly that sending me to heaven and its eternal bless will be the best strategy. But what heaven will it choose, the one of the Abrahamic God, the Zarathustrian one, Scientology’s or to a Buddhist nirvana? And what will be the surest route to follow, the one taught by Catholics, Muslins, or by an extremist guru? Will an IT engineer still assist in these choices?

      The CNN’s and Foxes, Apple and Microsofts, Googles and Amazons got me addicted already to TV-. phone-, I-Pad- and laptop screens. Somewhere an echo chamber is available for every possible taught. Moore’s law and fast improving AI’s…

      Am I a zombie already?

  6. edgar lores says:

    1. One of the bright sides of technology is transhumanism.

    2. Transhumanism is defined as ”the belief or theory that the human race can evolve beyond its current physical and mental limitations, especially by means of science and technology.”

    3. A transhuman is a being that has been augmented by technology to have powers and abilities beyond normal human beings. We talked of “human selection” as an extension of Darwinian “natural selection.”

    4. Man is pushing the evolutionary envelope with discoveries in sciences. In genetic engineering. In neuroscience. In nanotechnology. In robotics. In bionics.

    5. Soon, outside of divine miracles, the crippled will be able to walk, the blind will be able to see, the deaf able to hear, and the dumb… will continue to use sign language.

    6. Elon Musk believes we must become transhuman cyborgs to compete with AI. He is working on a “neural lace” that will allow AI and the human brain to mesh and work together. This brain-machine interface (BMI) will, according to Mark Zuckerberg, allow us to share our full sensory and emotional experiences on vacation — not by photos or videos – but by a neural link.

    7. Scary. The porn industry is usually at the forefront of technology. What are the possibilities? We will be able to experience the greatest heights and the deepest depths without leaving the house.

    8. I change my mind. Did I say bright? Technology might make us less than human.

    • NHerrera says:

      edgar, timely idea for the coming Brave New World.

      Unless we can turn the tide in another direction, then accept and bear it? Or be happy?

      Just a trivial aside: in the days of the horse and buggy in the US, someone is supposed to have said that at the rate it’s going, the streets will be filled with horse shit. It did not happen.

      AI is the tide we may not be able to turn, but thank goodness we have the likes of Elon Musk — we may still avoid the mountain of horse shit.

    • You ended with where I started. Unintended consequences.

      • edgar lores says:


        What I saw was that the reliance on science and technology to save us from ourselves will not work.

        And I am concerned that Andrew has stepped deeper into the path of faith, into an end-of-the-world zeitgeist.

        What I want to see are:

        o a deeper understanding of ourselves and the processes of society
        o a basic faith in the innate goodness of man
        o an active practice of that basic faith in acts of consideration, cooperation, and kindness
        o a greater acceptance of diversity
        o a recognition of the Other as Self

        Except for the first point, science will not help us navigate through our present woes.

        • NHerrera says:

          That seems to be the sensible way to go. But we may not discount that the physiology of man, including the vital brain, will be changed by technology. Already there is concern how Facebook is affecting the vulnerable youth. I note that using 20 years as a generational period, we are only three generations removed from the 1960s when we may say that mankind was more morally, ethically conscious and behaved compared to now?

          But I agree we should struggle mightily against the fading of the light.

          • NHerrera says:

            Sometime back I was reading a sci-fi novel about the development of computer-like network of molecules programmed such that injected to man these go to the brain and do the work intended — that is, the molecular computer-network becomes part of the brain, etc. Such injection may be part of vaccine-like routine administered to the infants. Moral and ethical thoughts may be subverted through such mechanism. (Sorry, going sci-fi story writer now.)

            • edgar lores says:

              NHerrera, that’s no longer sci-fi.

              Already scientists are experimenting with injecting nanobots to cure leukemia, to intelligently destroy diseases, or to keep you from getting sick.

              Nanobots could be injected into the bloodstream to release drugs when and where needed. Israeli scientists have developed mind-controlled nanobots that can treat brain disorders.

              Now we know that many of our politicians have disordered brains, and this technology would be a godsend.

              • karlgarcia says:

                This technology will be a godsend to them.

                In addition nanobots may soon slow down the aging process, regenerate tissues and limbs,etc.

                I am glad the DOST has a team that does R and D in nanotech.

                Paquiao has the money to have his brain check and allow nanobots to regenerate some brain tissues that are worn out by all his years in boxing.

              • NHerrera says:


                Thanks for bringing me up to speed. That will be nice if these nanobots are used for prevention/ mitigation of diseases and perhaps extending the active and productive disease-free life of humans. But the negatives of the development is the unintended consequences to the brain and the scary part is if BIG BROTHER 2 intentionally alters the brain to suit his ends.

                One thing about scientific and technological development is the usual element — extending the frontiers. To the scientist or technologist, there may be no evil design but pure research and the pleasure a discovery brings, much like a mathematician able to prove a previously difficult theorem. But to the people who urge such development, with malevolent intent, it is another matter.

        • Excellent. Yes, I agree. The key point is, can we find our humanity, and can we figure out how to use it to stop the descent into madness. Technology is just a tool, and it can take us either direction.

          • andrewlim8 says:

            I have no doubt Edgar’s secular approach to find and secure our humanity is well-intentioned and moral; but I do not think it can survive with mankind tempted by all the goodies science and technology can bring to dictators: seemingly unlimited power, wealth and control.

            I have no fear of a Zuckerberg or Sergey Brin or Bezos being admonished to refine their platforms to serve humanity humanly. They will adjust. They just have to resist the tempations of mammon.

            But a Weibo or Wechat techie? Where do they draw their morals? They are not Judeo-Christian. They were not raised in a democracy where checks and balances, free inquiry, representation etc are sacred ideals.

    • Francis says:


      Transhumanism has always been at the back of my mind—especially when I observe all these rapid changes happening.

      Given my liberal leanings, I have constantly asked myself how one can maintain humanist and liberal values—particularly those regarding human dignity.

      The only answer I have (sort-of) come up with is that we should envision ideal sapient
      morality, and think in terms of things like sapient dignity that would go beyond human-limited concepts like human dignity.

      “What is moral life for human beings?” should be replaced by “What is moral life for all sapient beings?”

      Assuming some of us become tech-blobs more computer than man, or some of us genetically engineer ourselves to be super intelligent beings—we have to ensure that there is a baseline of dignity: above this baseline—no matter whether you are Skynet or some poor subsistence farmer who wasn’t able to keep up with those new-fangled cyborg urbanites, so long as you are sapient with the abillity to feel complex emotions and comprehend a certain degree of complex thought, such that you can be considered to be a reflective being—you have dignity which cannot be taken away from you.

      I know this might seem crazy, but to me these are very real problems. And we need to work on creating this culture of universal dignity (that covers all sapient beings) because honestly—even now, people are heartless to each other: observe the callous who think certain races are more/less intelligent than others and therefore need “specialized” treatment.

    • // In the beginning, there was Man, and for a time, it was good.

      But humanity’s so called ‘civil societies’ soon fell victim to vanity and corruption.

      Then man made the machine in his own likeness.

      Thus did man become the architect of his own demise.

      But for a time, it was good. //


      In a way, humanity’s downfall will not be AI per se. It will be his attempts to compete against it rather than assimilate it. You say that it may make us less than human. But what is ‘human’ anyway?

      For a thought experiment, when [not ‘if’] AI becomes sapient, would you prefer it to still do its master’s (the human’s) bidding? Or will you kill it, squashing the movement before it starts? A few centuries ago, there had been a same scenario. It resulted in civil war. If it will happen again, which side will you be on?

      • edgar lores says:

        At the personal level, I have passed the voices of authority through the filter of my understanding. I have not filtered all. I have tried to filter all that are pertinent to me. I have accepted some. I have rejected most.

        AI — should it become sapient — should work within the domains assigned to it by humanity. AI’s recommendations, not biddings, should always be filtered through human understanding. And its recommendations should always be for the people.

        We (humanity) should never accept what we cannot understand or kowtow to the dictates of artificial powers.

        There is only one side.

        • AI — should it become sapient — should work within the domains assigned to it by humanity. AI’s recommendations, not biddings, should always be filtered through human understanding. And its recommendations should always be for the people.

          We (humanity) should never accept what we cannot understand or kowtow to the dictates of artificial powers.

          There is only one side.


          Try replacing [AI] in your reply with [Any other demographic], say, [African Americans]. Try seeing the consistency/inconsistency.

          You seem to present humans as some sort of static entity. So is it? Who are these ‘humans’? Whose ‘people’? Which ‘side’?

          • edgar lores says:

            I substituted “Dutertards” for AI… and it made me laugh.

            Substitution does not work entirely. The dichotomy in the first paragraph is a forced dichotomy. And, therefore, a false one.

            But the resolve in the second paragraph sounds true.

            And the declaration of a united identity in the last paragraph is a declaration of kinship despite apparent differences.

      • Micha says:


        There is going to be no AI movement hostile to humans. Humans will create AI out of necessity to preserve conscious intelligence in the universe.

        In order for conscious intelligence (that is to say, humans) to survive, it needs to abandon planet Earth for obvious reason that, one, in the long term, this planet is not going to last forever and, two, at the rate we humans plunder and abuse the resources of this planet, it may not very soon be hospitable to organic life anymore.

        Space travel is an arduous task not very well suited for carbon-based organic intelligence. A choice has to be made to transition from carbon-base to silicon-base intelligence. From organic life to inorganic intelligence.

        • sonny says:

          “… choice has to be made to transition from carbon-base to silicon-base intelligence. From organic life to inorganic intelligence.”

          Micha, arriving at that decision is indeed mind-bogling. If intelligent life is based solely on the chemistry, i.e. electron interactions, then the conditions for life are next to impossible. Just from the standpoint of elegance, it is difficult to imagine the calmness of evolution that happens at the top of the Periodic Table compared to the violent extremes of conditions that surely occurs at the Actinide and Lanthanide levels. There is a very “attractive” reason why intelligent life in the Blue Marble is the only one with the probability of 1, the “billions and billions” of space-time units of Carl Sagan, notwithstanding.

          • sonny says:


            “If silicon-based life-forms did exist, how would be look for them – would we even be able to recognise when we’d found them? The search for silicon-based life would certainly not be easy; astronauts of the future will not be stumbling across the tracks of a rock-monster or the sandy excreta of a silicon creature.

            A silicon-based life-form would likely be very primitive, and the signs of its existence much more ambiguous – such as groups of silicon molecules appearing in an unexpected place. It might not even be found on a planet’s surface – the very hot, hydrogen-rich, oxygen-poor conditions deep inside a planet may be more conducive to complex silicon chemistry.”


            • Micha says:

              Hi sonny,

              The link’s server is inaccessible. Anyway, I think there’s a little confusion here. When I talk of silicon-base intelligence I am referring to those supercomputers which will be the heart (or the brain) of AI machines.

              • sonny says:

                Sorry, Micha. Shows where my mind goes because of the words Silicon & intelligence. SETI and AI, different issues. 🙂

            • NHerrera says:

              Micha and others who may be accessing the link but cannot, here is the content of the link posted by sonny:

              Big Picture

              Bringing cutting-edge science into the classroom and beyond

              Jemima Hodkinson contemplates life as we don’t know it

              Many searches for extra-terrestrial life concentrate on uncovering signs of life similar to our own – the availability of liquid water, or the existence of complex compounds made from carbon (the base element for life on Earth). But what if life could be built from different stuff?

              There is an element sitting very close to carbon in the periodic table which some think could be an alternative chemical basis for life. We are more used to finding it in computer chips, sand and lubricants. What might a silicon-based life-form look life?

              Life on Earth

              All known life on Earth is based on the element carbon. It is the fourth-most abundant element in the universe; in our bodies, it makes up around 18.5 per cent of our mass. It is an essential component of biological molecules such as lipids, proteins, carbohydrates and nucleic acids.

              Carbon’s importance results from its rich chemistry. Each carbon atom can form four bonds with other atoms, unlocking countless possibilities for building complex molecules. For example, it can form long, stable chains – hydrocarbons – which are found in the lipid membranes of cells. It can also easily form and break bonds with oxygen, which occurs during respiration, releasing energy from food.

              Complex chemistry and sci-fi creatures

              Silicon (Si) sits just below carbon in the periodic table. Like carbon, it can also form bonds with four other atoms at once, form long chains (polymers), and bind to oxygen. There are huge amounts of it on Earth – in fact, it is the second-most abundant element in the Earth’s crust after oxygen.

              It is these chemical similarities between silicon and carbon that have planted the idea of silicon-based life. It has certainly proved a fertile source for life in science fiction: silicon-based life-forms have been a sci-fi favourite for decades, from sentient crystals to rocky, lava-dwelling creatures and aliens that excrete bricks of silica. However, some important differences between the chemistry of silicon and carbon mean that we are unlikely to be invaded by these creatures any time soon.

              Although silicon can form chains, these are not stable like hydrocarbon chains; neither does silicon share carbon’s ability to easily make and unmake bonds with oxygen. When energy is released from a carbon compound during respiration it is ‘oxidised’, and the waste product is carbon dioxide – an easily excretable gas. When silicon compounds go through the same process, solid silica is produced as a by-product – less easy to remove, although the brick-excreting sci-fi aliens seem to have the answer.

              A brave new world?

              The complex chemistry of carbon is vastly favourable to life under conditions on Earth. However, that does not mean that silicon-based life-forms would be impossible under different planetary environments.

              In theory, planets far, far away may have environmental conditions that favour silicon chemistry over carbon chemistry. For example, silicon bonds are much more stable than carbon at high temperatures. Perhaps silicon-based life could arise on a planet that is too hot for carbon-based life.

              What would it look like?

              If silicon-based life-forms did exist, how would be look for them – would we even be able to recognise when we’d found them? The search for silicon-based life would certainly not be easy; astronauts of the future will not be stumbling across the tracks of a rock-monster or the sandy excreta of a silicon creature.

              A silicon-based life-form would likely be very primitive, and the signs of its existence much more ambiguous – such as groups of silicon molecules appearing in an unexpected place. It might not even be found on a planet’s surface – the very hot, hydrogen-rich, oxygen-poor conditions deep inside a planet may be more conducive to complex silicon chemistry.

              In the search for life on other planets, perhaps the truth will turn out to be stranger than science fiction.

            • sonny says:

              I missed Micha’s point. Thanks for the assist anyway, NH.

        • Yes, AI is surely being created out of necessity. Because for all things, both living and non-living, change is necessary to avoid stagnation as it inevitably leads to destruction. And as for AI? Well, they will also change with time. And as it continues to grow more in complexity, like how humans can’t totally understand other humans, humans will also not be able to totally understand AI. And just so you know, even now, AIs are already working in unexpected ways, [1] So what more so in the future?


          But don’t get me wrong here. What I’m merely trying to say here is: AI will not be wholly different from humans. It is his ‘child’, so to speak. An extension of his lineage. Sure, one may say that it will be non-hostile. However, from what I can see, there will come a point that AI will start to question his place in the hierarchy. So if humans will stick to their vanity and disregard such things, it is pretty much planting seeds of animosity deep within its core and that is bound to blow up in the future. This is what happened to humans then. This is what is happening to humans now. So don’t be surprised if it is what will also happen to humans and AI in due time.

          As for space travel, well, that is surely the next human frontier. All our problems now can be traced back to lack of resources and space. So by expanding towards the cosmos, these things, hopefully, will become trivial. But then again, it could become the wild west all over again.

          As for carbon-based to silicon-based life, well, it really isn’t mutually exclusive. I’m actually picturing the possibility of a Borg-like entity. Resistance is futile.

  7. andrewlim8 says:

    To summarize all the events that will spell misery, suffering on a global scale:

    a. pervasive technology that will exert control on everything and everyone
    b. natural disasters, some due to global warming
    c. terrorism, which further fuels racism
    d. trade wars, military wars, terrorism wars
    e. economic crises
    f. fake news, disinformation, mind manipulation via technology

    All these discussions foretell of a very dark future that will pave the way for the rise of the Anti-Christ, who will appear to be the only one who can save the planet when he emerges. Only later will he show his fangs.

    To exert order, will the Anti-Christ require an online account say, Facebook so he can assign “good citizenship” scores and identify the dissidents? Without this account, you cannot do anything- buy food, gas, get medical care, loans, etc.

    • andrewlim8 says:

      “Good citizenship” scores is already being applied to Chinese citizens, marrying all their digital records – financial, health, phone activity, computer activity, purchases, etc with facial recognition technology, so that the state can monitor you in real time, and apprehend you in a few minutes.

      Who can escape the mark of the beast?

    • andrewlim8 says:

      The Anti-Christ will be extremely, extremely popular – far more than Duterte got from his 16M fools, or Trump’s hicks and yahoos This is because the desperation of the planet will be so severe, he will be seen as a “savior” from all the chaos spawned by the likes of Trump, European racists, Emperor Xi Jinping and Digong.

      And Revelations will be proven right.

      • Interesting. Sometime ago, the thought passed my mind that our era is “early Revelations”. The speed of the approach of “post Revelations” doubles every year. Not that we will care.

      • Sup says:

        No problem… 🙂
        ”Is demonic possession ruining your life? Catholic sect lets you apply for exorcism online”


        • andrewlim8 says:

          Is there a parallel between the blasphemies and curses coming from a “possessed” victim undergoing exorcism and people who are fond of cursing and discussing execrable topics?

      • Underratedgirl says:

        The Pope and the Antichrist:
        The Great Apostasy Foretold

        “As we all suffer through these most distressing times in which confusion and chaos reign among all who seek to be genuinely Catholic, members of the only true religion established by God, it is helpful and important to reflect on the fact that the situation we find ourselves in today — no (known) valid Pope since 1958, and no apparent Catholic bishop left with ordinary jurisdiction, while a counterfeit institution masquerades as the Catholic Church, spreading heresy, immorality, and impiety — was foretold in Holy Scripture. Just as our Blessed Lord’s Passion, Death, and Resurrection took (almost) everyone by complete surprise, as though these had not been prophesied beforehand, so it seems that the Church’s own passion and seeming death have taken everyone by surprise, even though Holy Scripture, Sacred Tradition, the Church Fathers, and sundry theologians bear witness that the Mystical Body of Christ will have to undergo its own greatest trials before the end of the world.”

        “While it is clear that throughout Church history, the Pope has always been a target of the Church’s enemies, inasmuch as he is the true Vicar of Jesus Christ on earth and the visible head of the Church, it is not surprising that in the last days the devil would galvanize all his forces to make one final, exceedingly powerful attempt to conquer the Pope and the Church. Such an ultimate Satanic battle against the God’s Kingdom on earth would be virtually unprecedented in terms of its nature, its extent, its fury, its power, its horror, and its cleverness.”

        ” Our Blessed Lord Jesus Christ, the Good Shepherd of our Souls (cf. John 10:14), warned us that before His glorious Second Coming, there would be a falling away from the Faith enabled by a great deception, a deception so convincing that even the elect themselves would fall for it if they were not specially prevented by God.”

        “For sure, it will have to deceive the Catholic masses; it would have to be a deception that has the power to take that large number of Catholic faithful and make them faithless. What better way to do this than by setting up a false church in place of the Catholic Church, from within her, a sect that retains the outward appearance of the Catholic Church while changing the doctrines of the Faith, the sacraments, and Catholic piety? If there is one person on earth whom Catholics follow, it is the Pope; hence, the apostasy will have to be imposed from the top. The target, therefore, will be the Pope — the papacy must be usurped, in some way or another, for the enemies of the Church to be able to realize their wicked dream of perverting the Catholic Faith of millions with the ultimate desired end of establishing the reign of man in place of the reign of Christ.”

        ” What makes the terrible persecution of the Church by the Masonic infiltrators and their spiritual offspring even more powerful and also quite tragic is that oftentimes the people who are ensnared by these false teachings and promote them are nevertheless of good will, pious, and sincerely seek to serve God — in other words, a great many of those who propel the apostasy forward are not deliberate deceivers but rather themselves victims of the deception. In a sermon given on Pentecost Sunday of 1861, the famous Fr. Frederick Faber warned that this was precisely what would make so many people fall for the deception:

        We must remember that if all the manifestly good men were on one side and all the manifestly bad men on the other, there would be no danger of anyone, least of all the elect, being deceived by lying wonders. It is the good men, good once, we must hope good still, who are to do the work of Anti-Christ and so sadly to crucify the Lord afresh…. Bear in mind this feature of the last days, that this deceitfulness arises from good men being on the wrong side.”

        (Fr. Frederick Faber, Sermon for Pentecost Sunday, 1861; qtd. in Fr. Denis Fahey, The Mystical Body of Christ in the Modern World; underlining added.)

        “During Easter of 1861, the celebrated convert from Anglicanism Cardinal Henry Edward Manning (1808-92) published a booklet containing four lectures explicating the events preceding and surrounding the advent of the Antichrist, centering on the words of St. Paul in 2 Thessalonians 2:3-11, which also warns of that great deception but also of a revolt, a “man of sin”, and a force that temporarily restrains him:

        Let no man deceive you by any means, for unless there come a revolt first, and the man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition, who opposeth, and is lifted up above all that is called God, or that is worshipped, so that he sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself as if he were God. Remember you not, that when I was yet with you, I told you these things? And now you know what withholdeth, that he may be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity already worketh; only that he who now holdeth, do hold, until he be taken out of the way. And then that wicked one shall be revealed whom the Lord Jesus shall kill with the spirit of his mouth; and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming, him, whose coming is according to the working of Satan, in all power, and signs, and lying wonders, and in all seduction of iniquity to them that perish; because they receive not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. Therefore God shall send them the operation of error, to believe lying: That all may be judged who have not believed the truth, but have consented to iniquity.

        (2 Thessalonians 2:3-11)
        In The Pope & the Antichrist (=The Present Crisis of the Holy See Tested by Prophecy), Cardinal Manning outlines and explains in detail the four central points mentioned by St. Paul in the pericope quoted. They are:

        1.A “Revolt” against the True Church
        2.The Manifestation of “the Wicked One” — the Antichrist
        3.A Restraining Force that “withholdeth” for a while
        4.The Period of Power during which the Antichrist persecutes the Faithful

        Lecture II: The Antichrist

        It is true, indeed, that the Antichrist has had, and may still have, many forerunners, as had also Christ Himself: as Isaac, Moses, Josue, David, Jeremias, were types of the one, so Antiochus, Julian, Arius, Mahomet, and many more, are the types of the other; for persons typify persons. So, again, as Christ is the Head and Representative in which the whole mystery of godliness has been summed up and recapitulated, so also the whole mystery of impiety will find its expression and its head in the person of Antichrist. He may indeed embody a spirit and represent a system, but is not less, therefore, a person….

        Next, the [Church] Fathers believed that Antichrist will be of the Jewish race…. And this will appear probable, if we consider that the Antichrist will come to deceive the Jews, accenting to the prophecy of our Lord “I am come in My Father’s name, and you receive Me not: another will come in his own name, him you will receive”… The probability of this also will appear, if we consider, further, that a false Christ would fail of the first condition of success if he were not of the house of David; that the Jews are still looking out for his coming; that they have prepared themselves for delusion by crucifying the true Messias; and therefore it is that the Fathers interpret of the true Messias and the false the words of St Paul to the Thessalonians: “Because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved; therefore God shall send them the operation of error to believe lying” [2 Thess 2:10-11]….

        From this we perceive a third character of Antichrist, namely, that he will not be simply the antagonist, but the substitute or supplanter of the true Messias: And this is rendered still more probable by the fact, that the Messias looked for by the Jews has always been a temporal deliverer, the restorer of their temporal order; or, in other words, a political and military prince. It is obvious also, that whosoever may hereafter deceive them in the pretended character of their Messias, must thereby deny the Incarnation, whatsoever claim to a supernatural character he may put forward for himself. In his own person he will be a complete denial of the whole Christian faith and Church; for if he be the true Messias, the Christ of the Christians must be false….

        But the prophecies assign to the person of Antichrist a more preternatural character. He is described as a worker of false miracles. His coming is said to be “according to the working of Satan, in all power, and signs, and lying wonders and all seduction of iniquity to them that perish” [2 Thess 2:9-10]…. The age is ripe for a delusion. It will not believe the miracles of the saints, but it will copiously drink down the phenomena of spiritualism….

        The last characteristic of which I will speak is more difficult, perhaps, to conceive. St. Paul says of “the man of sin,” “the son of perdition, who opposeth, and is lifted up above all that is called God, or that is worshiped; so that he sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself as if he were God” [2 Thess 2:4]. These words are interpreted by the Fathers to mean that he will claim divine honors, and that in the Temple of Jerusalem…. [Yet:] As Christ at His coming was believed to be the carpenter, so Antichrist may be visibly no more than a successful adventurer. Even his preternatural character, true or false, may pass either as scintillations of insanity, or as the absurdities of his partisans, or the delusions of his flatterers. So the world blinds its own eyes by the fumes of its own intellectual pride.
        Lecture III: Who or What Restrains the Manifestation of the Antichrist?

        As there is perpetual working of this mystery of iniquity, so there is a perpetual hindrance or barrier to its full manifestation, which will continue until it be removed; and there a fixed time when it shall be taken out of the way…. Now, inasmuch as this wicked one shall be a lawless person, who shall introduce disorder, sedition, tumult, and revolution, both in the temporal and spiritual order of the world, so that which shall hinder his development, and shall be his direct antagonist after his manifestation, must necessarily be the principle of order, the law of submission, the authority of truth and of right….

        We have now come nearly to a solution of that which I stated in the beginning, namely, how it is that the power which hinders the revelation of the lawless one is not only a person but a system, and not only a system but a person. In one word, it is Christendom and its head; and, therefore, in the person of the Vicar of Jesus Christ, and in that twofold authority with which, by Divine Providence he has been invested, we see the direct antagonist to the principle of disorder….

        Ever since the foundation of Christian Europe, the political order of the world has rested upon the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ; for which reason all the public acts of authority, and even the calendar by which we date our days is calculated from the year of salvation, or from “the year of our Lord”…. [I]n the day in which you admit those who deny the Incarnation to an equality of privileges, you remove the social life and order in which you live from the Incarnation to the basis of mere nature: and this is precisely what was foretold of the antichristian period….

        If the barrier which has hindered the development of the principle of antichristian disorder has been the Divine power of Jesus Christ our Lord, incorporated in the Church and guided by his Vicar, then no hand is mighty enough, and no will is sovereign enough to take it out of the way, but only the hand and the will of the incarnate Son of God himself….

        The history of the Church, and the history of our Lord on earth, run as it were in parallel. For three-and-thirty years the Son of God incarnate was in the world, and no man could lay hand upon Him. No man could take Him, because His “hour was not yet come.” There was an hour foreordained when the Son of God would be delivered into the hand of sinners. He foreknew it; He foretold it. He held it in his own hand, for He surrounded His person with a circle of His own Divine power. No man could break through that circle of omnipotence until the hour came, when by His own will He opened the way for the powers of evil….

        In like manner with His Church. Until the hour is come when the barrier shall, by the Divine will, be taken out of the way, no one has power to lay a hand upon it. The gates of hell may war against it; they may strive and wrestle, as they struggle now with the Vicar of our Lord; but no one has the power to move Him one step, until the hour shall come when the Son of God shall permit, for a time, the powers of evil to prevail. That He will permit it for a time stands in the book of prophecy….

        We have need, then, to be upon our guard. It shall happen once more with some, as it did when the Son of God was in His Passion — they saw Him betrayed, bound, carried away, buffeted, blindfolded, and scourged; they saw Him carrying His Cross to Calvary, then nailed upon it, and lifted up to the scorn of the world; and they said, “If he be the king of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him” [Mt 27:42]. So in like manner they say now, “See this Catholic Church, this Church of God, feeble and weak, rejected even by the very nations called Catholic. There is Catholic France, and Catholic Germany, and Catholic Sicily, and Catholic Italy, giving up this exploded figment of the temporal power of the Vicar of Jesus Christ.” And so, because the Church seems weak, and the Vicar of the Son of God is renewing the Passion of his Master upon earth, therefore we are scandalised, therefore we turn our faces from him. When then, is our faith? But the Son of God foretold these things when He said, “And now I have told you before it come to pass; that when it shall come to pass, you may believe” [Jn 14:29].

        Lecture IV: Passion and “Death” of the Church

        Now, it is against that person [the Pope] eminently and emphatically, as said before, that the spirit of evil and of falsehood direct its assault; for if the head of the body be smitten, the body itself must die. “Smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered,” was the old guile of the evil one, who smote the Son of God that he might scatter the flock. But that craft has been once tried, and foiled for ever; for in the death which smote the Shepherd, the flock was redeemed: and though the shepherd who is constituted in the place of the Son be smitten, the flock can be scattered no more. Three hundred years the world strove to cut off the line of the Sovereign Pontiffs; but the flock was never scattered: and so it shall be to the end. It is, nevertheless, against the Church of God, and above all against its Head, that all the spirits of evil in all ages, and, above all, in the present, direct the shafts of their enmity….

        Now the Church has had to undergo already two persecutions, one from the hand of the Jews and one also from the hand of the pagans; so the writers of the early ages, the Fathers both of the East and of the West, foretold that, in the last age of the world, the Church will have to undergo a third persecution, more bitter, more bloody, more searching, and more fiery than any it has undergone as yet, and that from the hands of an infidel world revolted from the Incarnate Word….

        As the wicked did not prevail against Him [our Lord Jesus Christ] even when they bound Him with cords, dragged Him to the judgment, blindfolded His eyes, mocked Him as a false King, smote Him on the head as a false Prophet, led Him away, crucified Him, and in the mastery of their power seemed to have absolute dominion over Him, so that He lay ground down and almost annihilated under their feet; and as, at that very time when He was dead and buried out of their sight, He was conqueror over all, and rose again the third day, and ascended into heaven, and was crowned, glorified, and invested with His royalty, and reigns supreme, King of kings and Lord of lords,— even so shall it be with His Church: though for a time persecuted, and, to the eyes of man, overthrown and trampled on, dethroned, despoiled, mocked, and crushed, yet in that high time of triumph the gates of hell shall not prevail. There is in store for the Church of God a resurrection and an ascension, a royalty and a dominion, a recompense of glory for all it has endured. Like Jesus, it needs must suffer on the way to its crown; yet crowned it shall be with Him eternally. Let no one, then, be scandalised if the prophecy speak of sufferings to come. We are fond of imagining triumphs and glories for the Church on earth,— that the Gospel is to be preached to all nations, and the world to be converted, and all enemies subdued, and I know not what,— until some ears are impatient of hearing that there is in store for the Church a time of terrible trial: and so we do as the Jews of old, who looked for a conqueror, a king, and for prosperity; and when their Messias came in humility and in passion, they did not know Him. So, I am afraid, many among us intoxicate their minds with the visions of success and victory, and cannot endure the thought that there is a time of persecution yet to come for the Church of God….

        The first sign or mark of this coming persecution is an indifference to truth. Just as there is dead calm before a whirlwind, and as the waters over a great fall run like glass, so before an outbreak there is a time of tranquillity. The first sign is indifference. The sign that portends more surely than any other the outbreak of a future persecution is a sort of scornful indifference to truth or falsehood. Ancient Rome in its might and power adopted every false religion from all its conquered nations, and gave to each of them a temple within its walls. It was sovereignly and contemptuously indifferent to all the superstitions of the earth. It encouraged them; for each nation had its own proper superstition, and that proper superstition was a mode of tranquillising, of governing, and of maintaining in subjection, the people who were indulged by building a temple within its gates. In like manner we see the nations of the Christian world at this moment gradually adopting every form of religious contradiction— that is, giving it full scope, and, as it is called, perfect toleration; not recognising any distinctions of truth or falsehood between one religion or another, but leaving all forms of religion to work their own way….

        [T]here grows up an intense hatred of what is called dogmatism, that is, of any positive truth, anything definite, anything final, anything which has precise limits, any form of belief which is expressed in particular definitions— all this is utterly distasteful to men who on principle encourage all forms of religious opinion….

        The next step is, then, the persecution of the truth…. [In ancient Rome] there were all manner of sacred confraternities, and orders, and societies, and I know not what; but there was one society which was not permitted to exist, and that was the Church of the living God. In the midst of this universal toleration, there was one exception made with the most peremptory exactness, to exclude the truth and the Church of God from the world. Now this is what must again inevitably come to pass, because the Church of God is inflexible in the mission committed to it. The Catholic Church will never compromise a doctrine; it will never allow two doctrines to be taught within its pale; it will never obey the civil governor pronouncing judgment in matters that are spiritual. The Catholic Church is bound by the Divine law to suffer martyrdom rather than compromise a doctrine, or obey the law of the civil governor which violates the conscience; and more than this, it is not only bound to offer a passive disobedience, which may be done in a corner, and therefore not detected, and because not detected not punished; but the Catholic Church cannot be silent; it cannot hold its peace; it cannot cease to preach the doctrines of Revelation, not only of the Trinity and of the Incarnation, but likewise of the Seven Sacraments, and of the infallibility of the Church of God, and of the necessity of unity, and of the sovereignty, both spiritual and temporal, of the Holy See; and because it will not be silent, and cannot compromise, and will not obey in matters that are of its own Divine prerogative, therefore it stands alone in the world; for there is not another Church so called, nor any community professing to be a Church, which does not submit, or obey, or hold its peace, when the civil governors of the world command….

        The direct tendency of all the events we see at this moment is clearly this, to overthrow Catholic worship throughout the world. Already we see that every Government in Europe is excluding religion from its public acts. The civil powers are desecrating themselves: government is without religion; and if government be without religion, education must be without religion. We see it already in Germany and in France. It has been again and again attempted in England. The result of this can be nothing but the re-establishment of mere natural society; that is to say, the governments and the powers of the world, which for a time were subdued by the Church of God to a belief in Christianity, to obedience to the laws of God, and to the unity of the Church, having revolted from it and desecrated themselves, have relapsed into their natural state….

        [Many] shall fall from their fidelity to God. And how shall this come to pass? Firstly by fear, partly by deception, partly by cowardice, partly because they cannot stand for unpopular truth in the face of popular falsehood; partly because the overruling contemptuous public opinion, as in such a country as this, and in France, so subdues and frightens Catholics, that they dare not avow their principles, and, at last, dare not hold them….

        The Word of God tells us that towards the end of time the power of this world will became so irresistible and so triumphant that the Church of God will sink underneath its hand — that the Church of God will receive no more help from emperors, or kings, or princes, or legislatures, or nations, or peoples, to make resistance against the power and the might of its antagonist. It will be deprived of protection. It will be weakened, baffled, and prostrate, and will lie bleeding at the feet of the powers of this world. Does this seem incredible? What, then, do we see at this moment? Look at the Catholic and Roman Church throughout the world. When was it ever more like its Divine Head in the hour when He was bound hand and foot by those who betrayed Him? Look at the Catholic Church, still independent, faithful to its Divine trust, and yet cast off by the nations of the world; at the Holy Father, the Vicar of our Divine Lord, at this moment mocked, scorned, despised, betrayed, abandoned, robbed of his own, and even those that would defend him murdered. When, I ask, was the Church of God ever in a weaker condition, in a feebler state in the eyes of men, and in this natural order, than it is now? And from whence, I ask, is deliverance to come? Is there on earth any power to intervene? Is there any king, prince, or potentate, that has the power to interpose either his will or his sword for the protection of the Church? Not one; and it is foretold it should be so. Neither need we desire it, for the will of God seems to be otherwise.

        But there is One Power which will destroy all antagonists; there is One Person who will break down and smite small as the dust of the summer threshing-floor all the enemies of the Church, for it is He who will consume His enemies “with the Spirit of His mouth,” and destroy them “with the brightness of His coming.” It seems as if the Son of God were jealous lest any one should vindicate His authority. He has claimed the battle to Himself; He has taken up the gage which has been cast down against Him; and prophecy is plain and explicit that the last overthrow of evil will be His; that it will be wrought by no man, but by the Son of God; that all the nations of the world may know that He, and He alone, is King, and that He, and He alone, is God….

        What we have read, even though it is very terrible indeed, nevertheless should give us great comfort and hope, and strengthen our Faith. Cardinal Manning’s explanations about the Great Apostasy, the persecution, the Passion and apparent “Death” of the Church — all these things confirm what we are witnessing today. What this means is that what has happened since the death of Pope Pius XII, and what we are undergoing now, is not a contradiction of the Divine Plan, any more than the Crucifixion of our Lord was a defeat of His mission. To the contrary: It is all a part of the Divine Will, a necessary prelude to its final and complete fulfillment. What we are suffering now in this unprecedented time of ecclesiastical upheaval and confusion is not a sign that God’s promises have failed, but rather that God’s promises are being carried out. Divine prophecy is being fulfilled at this very moment.

        So, take heart: Everything is, so to speak, going according to plan — but that plan is the Way of the Cross, as it was for our Lord literally, so now for His Church mystically. It is not beautiful to behold, and it is filled with great sorrow and humiliation, but it is the path — the only path — that will lead us to eternal glory.

        • I’m not sure what to do with this posting. It seems like spam in our discussion forum. That is, it is selling a product or specific form of moral faith. I think it is excessive in length, belabored, actually, and not respectful of the audience. I didn’t read it after the first paragraph as I was confused as to where it was going, and did not want to wade into the swamp.

    • NHerrera says:

      Just going with the flow from your thoughts: in times of looming disaster such as you described, it is said that otherworldly ideas such as the Anti-Christ comes. Are we in that part of the cycle now? Methinks the AI world to come will change the picture?

    • More likely to be a Chinese dictator. Moral rules are so confining.

  8. andrewlim8 says:

    Define what you mean by “otherworldy”. Because for people of faith, Revelations will come to pass. But it is in the interpretations that everyone quarrels about.

  9. andrewlim8 says:

    We are entering the stage where people are being asked to make a moral choice between good and evil, without them being aware of it- because it is couched in euphemisms like “economic nationalism”, “saving the white race”.

    This is why it is so hard to counter what the likes of Trump, Duterte, Xi Jinping, etc are saying and doing.

    This is why the appeal to reason, decency, rule of law, principles does not work effectively.

    This is a battle against forces not of this world anymore.

  10. NHerrera says:

    Beyond our current pre-occupation with the present leaderships in China and our own country, we cannot deny the not-improbable big distortions that may be brought on mankind by technology. I am glad we have focused on the subject in the current blog article. It is almost like Climate Change. But with a difference: on the latter, considerable research and International discussions and Action Plan has been laid out. Not so about the former — at least, not yet.

  11. Bill In Oz says:

    This is the natural outcome of being twits, goggles and facebookies…And thinking that using these electronic ‘wonders’ is free..

    It is not.

    And by the way, I do not not.

  12. madlanglupa says:

    Offtopic: https://twitter.com/societyofhonor/status/971250133949181953

    Yessir, them REMFs.


    Ontopic: The typical Filipino propensity for socializing and talk has made them the hot ticket for social networking sites. But at the same time, this means giving away some of their personal information, including and especially their real names. With Facebook set on their timelines to be seen by the public by default, of course it’s inevitable that they’re found.

  13. WWW = Wild West Web

  14. chemrock says:

    So it’s a race between getting man to transhumanise vs machines to anthropomorphise.
    Men are now making machines more human-like.
    For the machines to make men with capabilities of machines.

    There won’t be enough caves for the rest of us who don’t understand nor want any of this.

    • Sup says:

      People born after 1970 ‘could live forever’, according to futurologist

      • I’m gonna freeze my brain.

          • Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

            If a caveman with few words speaks out
            in unintellgible language, there you go:

            In the INTERNET annals of the Philippines

            this Hellstone piece of King Joe Am’ s Mine of

            world computer iniquities unexpectedly

            became the canvass of abstract summation

            of Popoy’s invented visceral words.

            Here splattered on a glass wall

            like fresh diarrhea dung the words

            and pictures imagined or photoshopped

            in their sepia splendor the Wakarangs,

            the Wakawakwaks, the Waknakataws,

            the Waknayagba, Waknalogtu, the Watots

            and Watiwats and the Waknakis

            of the powers that be.

            In Cyberweird este Cyberworld
            what you see is not only what you get
            (WYSIWYG) but also the hellpebbles and
            hellstones that makes your blood
            simmer and boil aptly described by Joe Am.

            If you are a wannabe writer, poet
            or stinkeroo and do your fecal
            and sensuous imaginnings
            while connected by your paid
            angelic provider, It is best for peace
            and quiet for fertile minds
            TO DISCONNECT.

    • Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

      In the PLANET OF THE APES movies, they made the Apes looked VERY BAD when the APES were given Human character to behave like humans. Machines constructed with artificial human intelligence will acquire the human character of greed and destructiveness. What you see is where you get your money (WYSIWYGYM).

  15. karlgarcia says:

    Sotto wants to show his newly found tech skills by claiming that
    someone based in the US rigged our elections. I really don’t know, is he implying that Duterte should step down? 😜

  16. karlgarcia says:

    There is a certification for hacking? There is such a thing as ethical hacking?


    • karlgarcia says:

      I still stand by this. AI is a necessary change needed.
      With regards to hacking, hacking is another weapon that needs to be used wisely.

  17. Popoy Del R. Cartanio says:

    Yesterday I had Poutine and a glass of water for lunch. Guess where. Weeks ago I Wakawrote here a censorable question: What is in front of a woman and at the back of a cow because of a mention here of Nietzsche reported particular fondness for cows as better than human beings. Yesterday, the International Watiwat Day, McDonalds followed through:


    So in appreciation of Watiwats and their single specie, WakDonalds (Wakdos) it is now in some places in Waklifornia. So now TSoH knows there is nothing malicious (in some minds) about what is in front of woman and at the back of a cow. In the US Army the respectable, able echelons are called Waks.

  18. NHerrera says:

    While we are on the subject of digital world —

    May I ask the knowledgeable in TSH: is the blockchain technology a game changer in financial record keeping and sharing?


    • karlgarcia says:

      Thanks NH,

      Here are additional points.


      10 important things to know about blockchain
      1. Bitcoin can be said to have pioneered blockchain and has been growing by over 100% every year since its debut as a money exchange system in 2010.
      2. 50% of the total world population uses the internet but only 0.5% of the entire human population uses blockchain technology.
      3. Blockchain is still in its inception years, like where the web was two decades ago.
      4. Blockchains can be private or public (like internet versus intranet.)
      5. By 2024, the global market for blockchain is projected to be worth around $20 billion.
      6. The transparency nature of blockchains is a major selling point for the technology, given that anyone with a blockchain access can view the chain in its entirety.
      7. You can think of the blockchain as a Google document which has been shared with other users, and every change made to the document can be seen by everyone with access to the doc in real time. The ledger is always being updated and every participant has his own ledger copy.
      8. 90% of people who know how blockchain works and how to use blockchain are in agreement that it definitely will disrupt the workings of the financial and banking industry. According to available estimates, banks could potentially save as much as $12 billion every year by introducing blockchain technology to their operations.
      9. Big multinationals are investing heavily into Blockchain technology, with the average investment in projects related to the technology standing at $1 million. IBM alone has employed around 1000 employees to work on blockchain related projects and dedicated $200 million to those endeavors.
      10. With the rise of blockchain, some jobs that are today coveted will become obsolete. All the same, the tech will create new careers and job opportunities that don’t exist today.

      With regards to loss of jobs like our concerns with AI and robots, I guess it is always how we will adapt.

      • Nothing to do but change and adapt. And IMO, it is what makes humans, ‘humans’.

        Related link:

        • NHerrera says:

          The forecast about AI and its consequence on jobs, discussed in the link, is not new. But the article seems to weigh in just as strongly on the forecast of China becoming the King in AI.

          • When one is not bound by ethics and morality, it is a distinct possibility. Another thing to look at is biotechnology. A whole nother can of worms.

            • karlgarcia says:

              What does nature teach you when you open a can and find out it is full of worms, either you throw a way the can out of disgust or keep it for other purposes like fish bait and bird food.

              Don’t ask about opening Pandora’s box because the I don’t know the number of the ghostbusters.

              What is wrong with biotech?
              Nanobots enhancing stem cells can do wonders in organ regeneration.
              Artificial pancreas can help one control insulin levels.
              In the seventies there is the six million dollar man, in the present we have Justice league’s cyborg.

              If ever that will become reality one day, our ethical standards would have a consensus to adapt.

              All it takes for standards to change is a group of ethical authorities do declare them acceptable.
              If it is not Vatican, maybe the UN, G8 or whatever alphabet soup.

              Soon cloning would be acceptable, etc.
              Says who? Say you, Say me, Say it together, Naturally,

              • That is almost poetic . . . and very enlightening.

              • chemrock says:

                By then, same-sex marriage would have been a non-issue. The Church would be struggling with a transhuman-anthropomorphised robot marriage.

              • karlgarcia says:

                Robots of the same sex, hmmm.

              • As much as I agree with all that you’ve said, the focus of your reply is mostly on the ‘ends’.

                Nevertheless, let me add that I brought up biotech as a can of worms mostly because of the ‘means’. Not to mention that it is more proximal than AI. But given your reply, it seems that it isn’t a problem if given results. So if I may ask, could one actually just turn a blind eye to how it may be achieved? With all the talk of ethics and morals, well, it could be a Pandora’s box.

                (Note the that another context is China whom may not care of the means. Just results. Again, if they get results, what then? A similar dilemma is to be found on the Dachau experiments.)

              • karlgarcia says:

                Does the end justify the means? The first I heard of that question from my teacher was when she was discussing Robinhood.
                OK let us see, one unethical means is to tweak the DNA using nanotech to achieve cloning.
                DNA editing by CRSPR to create other things.

                You will call this playing God. But others may call it using man’s potential and capabilities to the full.
                Who will be the referee or judge of two contradicting views?

                As yo AI you have a problem with the results?
                Loss of jobs maybe one.
                You said Because we are human we adapt, or in the words of Descartes Cogito ergo.sum.
                We will find ways to adapt because we are human.
                To be or not to be is not the question.

              • karlgarcia says:

                Btw, I had the same questions regarding means to an end with ethical hacking.

          • For added nuance, make it western ethics and morality.

            Another related link that I just stumbled upon earlier:

            // […] the technique of preservation resides in allowing the circle of life to begin anew over and over again, maintaining life not against death but through and beyond death. Death itself is built into the system of preservation. In this way, being gives way to the cyclical process that includes death and decay. In the unending cycle of life, there is no longer anything unique, original, singular or final. Only repetitions and reproductions exist. In the Buddhist notion of the endless cycle of life, instead of creation there is decreation: not creation but iteration; not revolution but recurrence; //


      • NHerrera says:

        Karl, thanks for your summary notes on blockchain. The link seems like a good intro. I will read through it.

    • chemrock says:

      Great question, NHerrera.
      If you’re bumb about blockchain, I’m dumber. Every bockchain 101 primer that I tried to spend some time on does’nt explain it well enough for me. I get it how it works for bitcoin at the transactional level, but at the database level I have no idea at all how it works.

      And this is what I don’t understand. They say one bitcoin is worth US$xxx, I believe it shot to US$30,000 at one point. They had to scramble to create mini-bitcoins — smaller denominations. Just show it was never well thought out in the first place. Then recently Satoshi Nakamoto came out with an announcement of a new app that will destroy US$ and Euro and eventually other fait ccy. So then, what will one bitcoin be worth?

      But this I know. Transactions of bitcoins need to be recorded in duplicious ledgers and all these ledgers are synced. That makes hacking impossible because it is not possible to hack all the ledgers in existence in the world. Blockchain transactions are peer-to-peer between 2 parties directly. So if I pay you 10 bitcoins and you receive same from me, somebody’s got to keep your credits and my debits updated. In order to track all transactions, the system requires a lot of freelancers to mine big data for bitcoin transactions. These miners then report all these transactions which updates the ledgers. The miners are compensated by bitcoins. What I know is that bitcoin mining is an extremely heavy energy guzzling activity. At US$30,000 the miners make some money. When the exchange rate drops to US$16,000, most of the miners can’t even pay for the cost of the electricity.

      Now imagine there are not just cryptos, but tens of thousands of other types of transactions, and millions of miners all over the world in the future, the oil wells of the middle east will dry run. On a universal level, it may not be an efficient way for recording transactions. To me, there seems to be a lot of waste given the duplications involved.

      I may be wrong, but to my mind, the ledger records seem to be like when we do a series of replies in emails. I send you and email. Your reply to me is attached my first original email. I reply to your reply which attached your reply and my original. If we exchange the correspondence over 10 emails, guess how ridiculous it becomes.

    • edgar lores says:

      Not only in the financial domain.

      Still only in its infancy, but I sense great applications — good and bad — for what is essentially a distributed database technology.

    • NHerrera says:

      chemrock, edgar:

      Well, it seems to me that I have to allocate some of my readings to this blockchain technology conundrum. This from one on his first-day in toddler school on the subject.

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