2024-06-30

模倣子 Why Clothing?

 Memetic Index - Quora Link - Earlier Essay 


I’ve got a theory, which may be not at all original, about “why clothing?” Humans being able to walk erect and having hands is not so much for tool use, since other animals can use tools without erect gait like ours. One thing that the erect gait gets you is the ability to CARRY things back to the village, i.e., if you find a bunch of food, like mushrooms, berries, nuts, or some dead animal or something, more than you can carry with two hands, then clothing, i.e., a fur or cloth or such wrapped around you becomes an enabling technology for better foraging, i.e., to use as a sack to carry stuff back, as in “dressed in sack cloth”. So clothes even in hot climates starts to make sense.

Once humans start to migrate out of warm areas then said clothing can be enlisted for double-duty to keep warm, protect from the elements. Having said that, early reports of people living in Tierra del Fuego and such said they did not wear much in the way of clothing, i.e., sort of gives the lie to the idea that humans started making clothes when things got cold. It makes more sense from a technological development standpoint that they were already invented in some other form. Hence clothing that doesn’t seem to “cover up your naughty bits.”

Which brings us to the body shaming part. If clothing is already “available” memetically speaking, then there is an iconic/memetic place to “hang” the shaming memes. A lot of societies are all about shaming and controlling women, so rather than the female body being shameful as such, if clothing is available as a technology, then it’s possible to start to hang/attach shaming memes to this already extant socio-technological object in order to control women. If clothing were not already available, present, then this would be much more difficult to accomplish.

詩 Arièl the Hoarding Mermaid

Memetic Index 

"Why do I have all this crap, and why can't I get rid of it?" Kind of like a dysfunctional Little Mermaid (admittedly more Danish than Dutch) 


Look at this stuff, isn't it neat? 
You might think my collection's more than complete. 

You want thingamabobs, I've got twenty, with my whozits and whatzits galore, no big deal, you might say, to throw one or two of them awaaaaay. 

But which one? 
They're all so unique, potentially useful and handy, but unlike candy, I can't eat them, and so they staaaaaay. 

I wanna be where those people are, those who say, a place for everything, and everything in its place, but who has the spaaaaaaace? 

Every day I thank god for recycling, is that why churches run donation centers, by the way? 
My precious little darlings aren't dying, my memories aren't erased. 
I can still treasure them in absentia, since they're just going into someone else's loving embraaaaaaace. 

I wanna be, please let me be, free from this minutia and baggage, somewhere that's cleeeeeean. 

漫画 Lulu Shooting Arrow

 Manga Index 

Lulu shooting arrow

2024-06-29

模倣子 SUSPECNA Notes

 Macromemetic Index - SUSPECNA A Meduim Blog Post

Introduction

I've got an idea for a new "uniform law" that would reform how States deal with Federal elections (rather like Nebraska and Maine). This post includes some of the many notes and emails I've written on the subject so far. 

Tasks to Accomplish

1. getting help from the Uniform Law Commission

2. drafting the legislation (with help from lawyer friends)

3. working out the voting system (e.g., ranked choice voting, and how to tally votes under such a system)

4. possibly including verbiage about Gerrymandering and other such voter suppression and inequality issues

5. reaching out to State legislators to get the law passed

6. looking into existing laws and practices (including what ballots look like) in the several States

7. other stuff (to be discovered)

ULC 

There's a Uniform Law Commission (documented in Wikipedia) which has been around for a century and a half and whose mission seems to line up with my idea of getting each of the Several States to pass my Electoral College Act.

You know about the interstate pact to make the Electoral College irrelevant, right? When states with enough electoral votes to win the election (270) join that pact, it automatically goes into effect. The states agree to give all their electoral votes to the winner of the popular vote. It seems air-tight to me. Is what you are working on different?

Yeah, I had major issues with the Interstate Popular Vote Compact as soon as I heard about it, and my worries were borne out by the recent Texas Supreme Court case against Pennsylvania, Georgia, and two other swing States. If an interstate compact exists regarding how States certify their electoral college results, nothing guarantees that states will disagree on how other states have counted their votes, and sue each other in the SCOTUS, and we already have proof that that can and will happen.

Even if the compact contains verbiage to the effect (and I haven't checked) that "signatory states shall respect the certified counts of other signatory states," or "signatories agree not to sue each other in the SCROTUS" or whatever. None of this is likely to work, even if it exists in the law, since there's a potentially infinitely deep set of Russian dolls of "yes, but they didn't count their votes right," or "the great State of Texas always has the right to seek relief in SCROTUS" or "yes, but...." or even as we saw in the electoral college of Texas, they deliberated for something like two hours about a resolution to SCROTUS decrying SCROTUS' decision to dismiss their suit against the other four States on the basis that they have no standing. By the way, they voted that the EC of Texas is a deliberative body and can discuss whatever and pass resolutions on whatever (including vote against the Interstate Compact if they decide, if Texas signs in future, which they are near to doing). Well, hey, I just thought of this -- the interstate compact would GIVE Texas standing (as an aggrieved party) in this situation, that is, SCROTUS would not have the same grounds for dismissal, i.e., they would have standing as a signatory of the interstate popular vote compact to sue other states over their vote counts. In other words, it would be Gore v. Bush times Biden v. Trump (where none of the cases are dismissed with prejudice as spurious this time) on steroids every single election. I could probably go on for a few more paragraphs.

So it's a huge truckload of crates of tins of worms, in my view, and I hope it doesn't pass enough states and dies a quiet death.

My idea is simply to create a law and get it pushed to the states as a Uniform Law, with the help of the Uniform Law Commission, that would do something like make all states choose their electors like Nebraska and Maine do (and I still need to read their laws in detail, as well as all the other states). By the way, I was unable to see the EC proceedings of those two states (ME, NE), so if you know any URLs, I'd be much obliged. I did watch a number of others, and it was exactly what I expected, and showed me that my idea for this 

The idea is to get rid of the winner-takes-all rule. If we do that, we've effectively make the EC match up with the popular vote. People think the EC doesn't track the popular vote, because of the "at large" (Senator) electors, and yes, that as some impact, the ol' Wyoming voters get 193,000 votes per elector, while Texas, New York, and California voters are about three times that, and that makes Republicans (or whoever Gerrymanders Western States) easier to get votes.

Yeah, kind of, but I would argue that's not such a big deal, but that it's overshadowed by winner-take-all.

One complaint is "my vote doesn't count" if I'm blue in a red state or vice-versa, or green in a red state or whatever. Take Idaho. Depending on how you set things up, both districts might still go red, but the two at-large electors, one might go blue if all of the blue voters in the state  So Idaho might elect three red and one blue, instead of always four blue. Also, one or both at-large electors could be "given" to a minority group. This is a kind of "out there" idea, I'll admit. But say you have a minority, like black people, or latinos, who are spread out all over, but are recognized as having their own political need. So if you're black or latino, you could opt for a latino or black ballot, in which you'd have the right to vote for one or both of the at-large electors, and of course the elector for your district, and regular voters would not have at-large electors on their ballots, just their local district electors.

I do want to do some analysis of past elections to see how things would've gone if my new law were in place, and maybe some what-ifs as to whether it were only partly in place.

Anyway, sorry if I sound heavy-handed. I was suspicious of the Interstate Popular Vote Compact from the off, I think it changes too much, and the Texas SCOTUS action just confirmed my suspicion about how it would be a destabilizing effect, rather than the reverse.

Anyway, yes, I'm unemployed and writing full time since April. What you said John Le Carré sounds like about what I'm doing. I hope to have something to show you, if you want, sometime soon. The first half of my chapters are in flux again, hopefully tidied up soon, then the last 1/3 of the book is kind of a shambles, too.

Once I fix the electoral college and gerrymandering, I think health care is next, and then some kind of amalgam of Universal Income, welfare, unionization, social security and maybe a few other things.

Got to make it so that people's votes actually count, so that candidates have to campaign in all of the states, not just the handful of swing states, and feel like none of them are guaranteed, and third party entrants become realistic. Anyway, I do blah, blah, blah.

PS: The working title for my new Uniform Law is SUSPECNA (Simplified Uniform State Popular Electoral College Normalization Act), which I'm sure you'll agree is superior to the forgettable "National Popular Vote Interstate Compact."

PPS: Probably some right-wing screed (I didn't read it through) but here's agreement and support for exactly what I just said. Yes, yes, it's almost certainly unconstitutional (some don't give a big rat's about that, others do). For me, as an information system engineer, I don't like non-convergent systems.

The name of your new law sounds suspicious. :) What are non-convergent systems?

I just discovered Robert Sapolsky -
https://youtu.be/_njf8jwEGRo?t=4195

He gives a great explanation of the butterfly effect, right at the place in the URL. But the whole lecture is very interesting.

I've heard from experts that the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact is legally very sound. Interstate compacts are allowed and respected in Supreme Court precedents, and the states have autonomy in how they select their electors. OTOH, we have arrived at a point in history where legal and constitutional structures are in danger of being ignored or overthrown by the Republican cult.
So I originally wrote all the following before the events of Wednesday the sixth (a day that will live in infamy). I may be able to safely further beat my drum of how the NPVIC might make things worse in terms of States suing each other or fighting each other in the January 6 joint session. The NPVIC could give grounds for objection where none would otherwise exist.

Let's all just let our own imaginations run wild in our own separate, socially-distanced garrets with the blinds drawn for now, shall we?

Yeah, that was one of the frightening aspects of the past four years, that our system of laws and Constitution became almost religiously iconic in nature, and upheld more in the breach than the observance, used to press one's own agenda, and now it's just pressing one's own agenda out of arrogance, whether or not there's legal support.

Yeah, I just feel that the NPVIC won't be a stable system, especially given the growing divisiveness we see. The voters in one state want candidate A and the voters in another state want candidate B, but the overall majority is for candidate B, so a "sovereign" state has to go against the will of its own voters and switch them all to candidate B. The people who have to execute that switcheroo are elected, paid by the state, and they may lose their jobs because of the action of voters in another state, and their elected officials. We've already seen way more wrangling in 2000 and 2020 over much less. I don't care how well-worded a law is, it's not going to change those facts right there, or probably a bunch of others.

I should try to come up with a mathematically rigorous description of "stability" in terms of the Electoral College.

It would be interested to hear what your experts say about the Texas SCOTUS suit against PA, GA, Wi, MI ("Pagaweemee") regarding their vote counting. SCOTUS dismissed it on the basis of standing, i.e., a State cannot claim aggrieved status over how another State counted its votes. That's how the Constitution is designed to work. Do your experts think that the NPVIC would grant Texas, for example, standing, in such a case? I assume that it might, and given what I've seen, that could be a disaster.

It's all trying to solve a problem that's caused by winner-take-all. We should solve that, not mess around with something that's not the root of the problem. Say "California's EC votes don't reflect the popular vote!" Okay, true. There are about 57 electoral votes in California. Mostly Democrat, but about 30% Repubilcan. So say, "I live and love in Orange County, and thanks to the EC my vote doesn't count!" Hogwash. The problem is that California should be sending 16 Republican electors (I assume the two at-large electors would go Democrat).

<start content=possible-pointless-rubbish>

Texas is about 50/50%, so amazingly, it's more Democrat than California, and 38 votes. That means with Texas and California together, the Dems get 41+19 = 60, and Republican 16+19 = 35. With the winner-take-all EC, it's 57 versus 38. Population-wise California is 39.5 million and Texas is 29 million.

So Popular vote 42.2 million Dems, 26.4 million Republican or 61.5% Dem versus 38.5% Reps.

WTA EC:  57 / 95 = 60% dems, 40% repub.

"Normalized" EC: 60 / 95 = 63.1% dems, 36.8% Republican

This doesn't mean too much without running the numbers for more states, like little agricultural ones that always vote "all Republican", like at least running all of the Western States and see what that looks like.

To my mind, it's a question of granularity. You may share this feeling, like every presidential election, except possibly the one we just had and one or both Obama ones, of "Who the hell voted for this guy? None of the people I know did, but he won at a walk. What the hell?" In other words, I look around my neighborhood and either feel like we all voted the some, but people in many, many other neighborhoods voted the other way. Or in my case, I look at my neighbors and I'm pretty sure most of them voted the other way.

The point is, one doesn't feel if everybody around voted against one, that one's vote is not being counted, is ignored. We may feel our country is bat-shit crazy and like we're somehow in danger, but not like our vote was ignored. The point is that if the votes were all counted up for my whole neighborhood, and it went one way, I'd be part of it, even if it didn't go my way. Just like if three of my neighbors voted the other way, one would cancel out my vote, and the other two would go the other way.

I don't know what I'm trying to say. I guess it's like pixels on a screen. At some point you gotta say, "This spot here is orange," once you've decided how big of dot size you're going to work with.

<end content=possible-pointless-rubbish alt-tag=jay-may-be-flattering-himself>

I'm getting the feeling I have some fundamental work to do in order to be able to talk clearly about these things. And I think it might dovetail into the gerrymandering work I want to do. I might need a quantity like the "effective impact of a single vote" on an election. Like, effectively Wyoming has way more impact than California, for instance, since WY has like half a mil population, and one Congressional Representative, so each of their EC votes "costs" just under 200K votes, while it's more like 700K in California (and Texas). So a WY vote has three times the impact.

By the way, that might be a problem for the PNVIC -- how to deal with this unevenness of electoral votes? It's probably in keeping with how the law is to work, i..e, it doesn't matter who actually casts the electoral college votes, just how they are split up.

And actually, that's an interesting point: how should the at-large electors be selected? Is there a way to do it that's fair, and which promotes 3rd party entry?

Oh, cool idea. Instead of Wyoming giving all it's vote to some PNVIC pot, it could give one or more of its at-large electors to someplace like California. Is that an incremental move in the direction of PNVIC? Or is it just random crap? That's an important question, since if that's hard, then PNVIC is hard. So far it's the big democrat states who have signed up (that's right, no?). The hard part will be when different-party States have to hand their votes to the other side. Totally random, off-the-cup thought.

Anyway, I wrote all this crap, and it's been sitting in my drafts folder, so I thought I'd shoot it off.


PS: Thanks for the video -- I'll try to get to it soon.

....
I think your remark below is the challenge so that you are building a framework which becomes clearer as your update it.  Common ground for the most will help build support for incremental solutions down the road.
Thanks for all your hard work...... 

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

I've got a little project that I've been thinking about.

I want to explore electoral legislation, namely gerrymandering and updates to electoral college legislation at the state level.  

This new legislation would get rid of the "winner takes all rule." One hoped-for outcome would be that third parties would actually have a chance of getting some EC votes. Another is that the EC would more closely track the popular vote. 

I'm trying to put a team together. I need to check what each State's (apart from Nebraska and Maine, though I'll want to look at them, too, since their way of choosing Electors will probably be a template) way of choosing Electors in the Presidential election looks like. The objective is to draft an amendment to each State Constitution (or whatever part of their election code, whatever that looks like) and get it to the right people (State Assembly majority and minority leaders, State party leadership, whatever) to change how Electoral College Electors are chosen. Worst case a different law would have to be drafted for each State.

What I'm envisaging at the moment would be like Nebraska and Maine (I still need to get into the details of how they work), where each Federal Congressional District would choose a different elector, and each ballot in every district would have two "at large" electors (two for each party) as well, which would be the same on every ballot in the State. Whether this would simplify the ballot that each voter had to fill in remains to be seen. 

There's another initiative, the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, which tries to accomplish something similar, but I believe it to be wrong-headed. I need to get into the details, but it effectively has States club together to agree on voting all their electoral votes to exactly match how the popular vote went. It kicks in when 270 EC votes worth of States sign onto it, pass it. Problems abound, in my view, since one state's submission of their electoral votes depends on other states' vote counts. California, for instance, would have to wait, in principle, for a score of other states to count their votes, and if they all turn up Republican, then all of California has to vote 100% Republican, too. Are California, Texas, or all the other States then supposed to be allowed to check the other States' election certification and vote counts? Contentious election counts in any State could potentially impact the certification of dozens of other States. I should probably write a piece on this.

I need a catchy name, or I already thought of one and forgot it, but something like Uniform State Popular Electoral College Normalization Act (USPECNA? rather the same idea as the Uniform State Narcotic Drug Act, but less fascist, i.e., a State-level initiative that all States need to get on board with, but, unlike NPVIC, every State that passes my law helps a bit, not all-or-nothing). Maybe SUSPECNA (Simplified Uniform State Popular Electoral College Act). I'm open to suggestions, but "The Popular People's Front of Judea" is right out.

I want to get historical election data and model how elections would have gone had this legislation been in place.

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

On the Gerrymandering, I want to understand the precinct-level voter data, and the goal is to come up with some kind of analysis method that would lead to an algorithm or formula that would provide a deterministic answer as to whether Gerrymandering had taken place (even accidentally). It should be multi-party friendly as well. I'm currently trying to model things on the RISK game board for starters, and then move on to read election data. I still need to nail down sites that provide this information, and in what format. One issue I suspect will be a problem is "adjacency data," i.e., which precincts are next to one another. I've got a buddy who's shown interest in the math behind this problem.

Update of name for Uniform Voting Act.

I need a catchy name, or I already thought of one and forgot it, but something like Uniform State Popular Electoral College Normalization Act (USPECNA? rather the same idea as the Uniform State Narcotic Drug Act, but less fascist, i.e., a State-level initiative that all States need to get on board with, but, unlike NPVIC, every State that passes my law helps a bit, not all-or-nothing). Maybe SUSPECNA (Simplified Uniform State Popular Electoral College Normalization Act). I'm open to suggestions, but "The Popular People's Front of Judea" is right out.

And I need to reach out to the Uniform Law Commission, and maybe they can help me with the name.

Legal Eagle did a video on the Texas suit against other States to change their election results, which is a great example of why the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, i.e., States would be required to interfere with one another's election processes in order to fulfill the requirements of this law, which this suit and the 2020 election show to be deeply problematic.

Voting Systems



I'm putting together a project to reform voting. One prong is Gerrymandering (mainly describing it mathematically) and the other is the Electoral college (getting rid of winner-takes-all)

Gerrymandering is a separate but very important issue, as are other forms of voter suppression. This piece speaks to a number of voter suppression issues to do with operating polling stations, eg, funding. 

The SUSPECNA (act) will ease pressure on election management by removing the winner takes all aspect of presidential elections. This will have many benefits leading up to and during the election. 

State Lawsuits


Here’s the suit that makes me think that The:

...is not only a bad idea, full stop, but could actually accord standing to these kinds of lawsuits, ie, states suing each other in SCOTUS over how they voted. 

I need to get on this SUSPECNA legislation I want to do. 


And a buddy (you know who you are!) sent me this very promising link :

Which uses the term “Bill proposal” which I want to do:

SUSPECNA electoral college reform uniform state law

Reïnstate the fair and balanced law for news outlets (the FCC policy tossed out by Dick Cheney?)

Possibly federal and also uniform state law that corporations be licensed/incorporated “in the public interest”

Possibly fed and uniform state laws that healthcare providers be treated like utilities, eg, de facto monopolies serving a beholden population and therefore subject to price-gouging, levels of service, non-denial of service, reasonable guarantee of quality and timeliness of service, etc. 

I have a few others, but that may be a good start.  

漫画 Lulu with Rifle

 Manga Index 

Lulu with rifle

模倣子 SUSPECNA on A Medium

 Macromemetic Index - Original A Medium Article - SUSPECNA Notes 

Good point about multiple parties. Out here in the west it seems like we could do with a “farmers party” and probably a “green party” as foci which are especially relevant. 


I have an idea, about which I have been vigorously dragging my butt on for several years now, well, I’ve done research, spoken to a few lawyer friends about drafting legislation, and I’ve found the Uniform Law Commission (though I haven’t actually contacted them yet). Each State would be asked to pass an election law, rather like Maine and Nebraska have, that effectively gets rid of “winner takes all” in presidential elections and introduces ranked choice voting. 


The combination of these relatively minor changes (the electoral college would not be amended in the Constitution at this time) I believe would allow entry of other parties, and eliminate the phenomenon of “battleground States”. For instance, the 30%-40% of California Republicans and 49% of Texas Democrats could no longer be ignored or taken for granted and would have to be wooed just like Pennsylvanians, Michigan voters, and everybody else. 


The ballot would not change much. You’d still vote for your single elector (just like your single House representative), but also for two  at-large electors. I’m thinking of including provisions for “small States” (eg, Wyoming) to “donate” their at-large electors to other States by vote of their legislatures. Why they would decide to do this is left up to them, but that takes care of the “overrepresentation issue” inherent in the electoral college…for now. 


Anyway, stuff like that. 


Working title: Maybe SUSPECNA (Simplified Uniform State Popular Electoral College Normalization Act). I'm open to suggestions, but "The Popular People's Front of Judea" is right out.


By the way, I reckon the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, apparently already passed by some twenty States, is rubbish on the face of it, but also rather frightening given that Texas sued (correct me if I get the list wrong) Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Georgia (through the machinations of, as I understand it, a Trump toady who was hoping for a pardon, but still…) over how they counted their votes, but it was thrown out by SCOTUS based on standing. It’s seems to me that two States, both signatories of a uniform law that specified how to count votes and how to coöperate on what to do about the results might constitute standing. I’ve gotten mixed reviews on this idea, but worst case scenario is if NPVIC reaches the 273 electoral vote threshold we may see States suing each other in the Supreme Court continually and it’ll be Bush-Gore 2000 forever and we’ll never have another actual election. 


Join me if your interested! Suggestions welcome!

2024-06-27

模倣子 How to Play Faspeel

 Memetic Index - Previous Rules 




Introduction

This is a simple game which is quick to play and only requires the coins in one's pocket. It can be played just as a game of chance, or as an exercise in trying to read one's opponent.

The name comes from French (1). The idea came from boiling chess down to the simplest possible board, i.e., two by two and two pieces (2).

Stuff Needed to Play

1. Each player needs three coins of the same type, i.e., size and shape, and each player's coins need to be distinct from the other players, e.g., one larger or a different color or nationality. For example, three pennies and three nickels, for you Americans.

2. You need a cross on a piece of paper or table. This is "the board."

fig 1.1 "the board"

3. A piece of paper and pen or pencil to keep score.

The Set-up

1. Each player places a coin, face up or down, on the board at diagonals. This is called "The Show" or what is showing--more on this later.

fig. 2.1. Coins on the board "The Show"


2. Each player stacks their remaining coins, one on top of the other, so the bottom coin is hidden. The top coin is "The Cover," the bottom one "The Secret" and together they are "The Message."

fig 2.2. Stacked player coins "The Message"

How to Play

At the start of every turn, a player has the choice of:

1. Moving their "Show" coin (including "Bumping" the other's Show coin--see below)

2. Flipping their "Show" coin

3. Shuffling their "Message"

First, some terminology. The players' coins are either "Near" one another, or "Away" from one another on the board. At the start, they are at diagonals, which is "Away." When "Away," the only move is to move "Near" (3). When "Near," one can either move "Away" or choose to "Bump" the other player's "Show" coin. This is when scoring is determined--more on this later.

fig 3.1. "Near" fig. 3.2. "Away"

When shuffling their "Message" the player holds their coins so the other player may not see them. The player may flip either the "Cover" coin, the "Secret" coin, both, or neither, before replacing them with the "Cover" up. It does not matter if the two coins themselves are exchanged, so long as one covers the other.

Scoring

When a player "Bumps" the other player's coin on the board, the player being bumped reveals their "Secret" coin. If it's the same as the "Bumping" player's coin, each player gets two points. 

If the Bumper's "Show" and the Bumpee's "Secret" are different, then both players flip their "Show" coins and if both come up tails the Bumpee gets three points, otherwise the Bumper (the player whose turn it is) gets one point.

The players put their coins back in the diagonal position and it's the next player (Bumpee's) turn.

Keep a tally of the scores until one player (or both) reaches ten, and that's the end of a round. The game may be played competitively or cooperatively for as many rounds as desired.

_____________________________

(1) The French name is “Face-pile” (Faspeel or “heads or tails”) the German is Münzspiel (“coin game”) and the Japanese is 表裏 (“hyô-ri” or “heads or tails”). Still working on Spanish—could be something like “cara mentirosa” (“lying face/coin face”).

(2) The idea is to step back from chess and make a system that may be more easily modeled as a memetic system, and then work back up to chess as a model of conflict or cooperation between two "societies."

(3) For the purposes of the game, when moving from "Away" to "Near," the direction, left or right, doesn't make a difference.