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Month: June 2013

Number 310

The New Terrapin Gazette Number 310 28 June, 2013 Ideas which have the power to alter the habits of human thought do not act on the conscious mind alone; they seep through to the deeper strata which are indifferent to logical contradictions. They influence not some specific concept, but the total outlook of the mind. If You Try To Hide It, They Will Spot It, Archive It, And Try To Take It Apart From here comes information that NSA is both able and permitted to record and …retain and make use of “inadvertently acquired” domestic communications if they contain usable intelligence, information on criminal activity, threat of harm to people or property, are encrypted, or are believed to contain any information relevant to cybersecurity (emphasis added)…. Yes, that’s all possible without a warrant. On becoming aware of this, some folks will want to drive NSA round the bend, and will start encrypting all their e-mails — frequently sending “messages” that are random jumbles of letters and numbers. They will encourage their correspondents to exchange graphics or audio recordings along with those encrypted texts; the non-text files could and might contain hidden encrypted data (that’s explained here), so NSA will have to try to discover whether photos of bikini models and kittens are hiding nefarious conspiracies. That task will not be easy or quick — it’s impossible to prove that...

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Number 309

The New Terrapin Gazette Number 309 21 June, 2013 …taxation may be so high as to defeat its object…given sufficient time to gather the fruits, a reduction of taxation will run a better chance, than an increase, of balancing the Budget. The Whistleblower Is Just A Tiny Part Of The Full Story Initial impressions This newsletter finds it easier to believe whistleblower Edward Snowden than to believe Obama. The fellow who has exposed some of NSA’s secrets seems genuinely concerned about the implications of the gargantuan data-mining efforts. His statements have an inherent plausibility and do not seem the views of a crackpot conspiracy theorist. He raises genuine ethical concerns that are relevant to any massive surveillance operation. Unlike Assange (the creepy freak) and Manning (who seems slightly stupid and gullible), this fellow makes a good impression. The favorable comments above are negated by one fact: Snowden was not simply interested in alerting the US electorate to the full story. According to some sketchy reports, he has informed the Chinese government of US policies and practices as they relate to China. If that is true, it makes the “whistleblower” a fake, and exposes him as a volunteer spy. The story is not over yet — he might be charged with treason. This newsletter cannot verify claims that Snowden has helped China understand NSA operations. Here are three sources of...

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Number 308

The New Terrapin Gazette Number 308 8 June, 2013 …the notion of formative cause is relevant to the view of undivided wholeness in flowing movement, which has been seen to be implied in modern developments in physics, notably relativity theory and quantum theory. …we see that certain developments in modern physics imply a sort of insight into nature that is in respect to the notions of formative and final cause, essentially similar to ways of looking that were common in earlier times. Speculation Informed By History: The Next Major Advance Of Science The two philosophies of Nature “Philosophy” means the love of wisdom. Wisdom regarding matter, energy and time, and wisdom regarding the emergence and behavior of life-forms constitute the domain of science. One might well note with dismay that the former is today in rather good order and the latter has always been profoundly troubled and remains far from complete. For example, the dispute between Bohr and Einstein continues under investigation, but the fundamental questions surrounding life, the origin of mankind and the nature of consciousness remain unanswered. All too often, superstition, hoaxes and outright abuse of academic freedom mar biology, while physics carries on with intellectually honest efforts to reconcile differing views of reality. A consideration of the history of physics may provide insight into what will be required for the biological sciences to break out of...

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