Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Commercial Calculations of Human Folly

Starbucks has a "Refill Tumbler" this December for $49.95 in-which you can get a free coffee or tea (one per day) each day of January 2017. I know because I'm sitting at one of their tables and can see the display.

Back in the day (What if the day was actually a year? Or how about a band? I think of some dumb shit sometimes in between brilliant ideas!) my brother taught me all about this kinda monkey business.

As I stood in line behind the lady talking to the guy at the register, listening to how Publix doesn't allow bearded employees, and how the guy hates Publix because he has a beard. I did the math in my head about the tumbler using what my brother once taught me.

At $49.95 a tumbler that's about $1.70 per cup of coffee. If you drink coffee every day you'll save about 50 cents per cup every day. Not a bad deal eh? BUT, is the person who buys this thing going to come in here and drink burnt coffee every day? (That's what I'm having right now, good'ole Starbucks burnt coffee.) I don't think they'll make it in every day, well not most people. I believe there's someone at Starbucks headquarters who knows this. Someone with a history in insurance, I'm sure. And, they've figured out what percentage of people will lose this fucking thing, and what percentage of people will give out before they can handle cup after cup, back to back, day after day of enthusiastically roasted coffee?

I guarantee you that human folly is calculated into deals like this.

Nonetheless, happy holidays!

Namaste motherfucker.

P.S. Feel free to check out my podcast: http://atlanticradio.blogspot.com/

Sunday, November 06, 2016

Unparalelled Contact and the Social Web

    What we have right now are below average minds to the somewhat intelligent and up, with access to all the information that the digital arena makes available. And twenty years ago or less, only geo politicians and government agencies had access to this kind of stuff. So, here is everyone trying to hammer it out with each other. Dispelling each others misconceptions, some of which are so deeply rooted, they may never be changed in a lifetime.

People who have never been challenged on something, because they were the authority on it within their peer group constantly come face to face with people who know way more about it than they do, and that's a beautiful thing!


(In the news: Native Americans are blocking a Dakota pipeline, Presidential Election between Trump and Hillary is two days away, and the weather is cool and beautiful outside.)

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Paul Mason - Post Capitalism

One of the things that sticks-out about this talk on technology’s effect on Capitalism for me is, the concept of Non Rival goods. Rival goods are something like a parking space, or an ice cream cone. Usually only one person uses these at a time.

One of the effects that digital data have had on Rival Goods like music, is that before the internet, if you had a CD, vinyl album, or cassette, only one person could play it at a time. But, the web makes it so that the same song file can be copied, and just because you’re playing it right now doesn’t mean I can’t play it at a completely different location at the same time, as well as a trillion other people for that matter.

Something else that stood out about his argument is: When iTunes had ninety-five percent of the online music market share, Love Me Do by The Beatles and some awful B-Side song from an unknown band both cost the same price, 99 cents. Which demonstrates that this is not Capitalism, but something more like controlled prices like in the Soviet Union. Except, instead of the state setting a price across the board, it’s a corporation. - Call it what you want. Whether it’s a private or government organization in control of it, it’s a form of government. Anarcho-Capitalists and Libertarians beware.

(In the news: Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are still leading in the presidential race, Dakota Pipeline is being blocked by Native Americans.)

Friday, July 22, 2016

The Religion of Money

   Whenever I read that some team of scientists have found a possible cure for a disease, but can’t pull it off due to how much money it will cost. I try to imagine a physical or even a moral barrier in their way, but I can’t. I can however imagine a figurative obstacle, but it’s invisible, and in truth doesn’t exist. So, the dominan
t world culture is held back by an invisible being, by a lacking of something invented by humans themselves. Does that remind you of anything?

I play music at a proton center from time to time, and it seems that this cancer treatment is reserved for patients with a lot of money, or those with a certain type of insurance due to how expensive the treatment is.

And, the part that gets me every time this idea occurs, is then I notice how it even gets under the radar of scientists, who are supposed to be empiricists. And, it gets by business magnates. Because, they take the monetary cost of something as a fact of life, as a law of the universe, even though there is no such law except in the imagination of people.  

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Being "White" Is Optional

There is no white race. Somebody just made it up. It’s a huge umbrella of cultures from Europe and other parts of the world. But, I often wonder, does a person who throws themselves under the umbrella of “white” in some way take credit for the accomplishments of someone like Bill Gates, Elon Musk, or Steve Jobs?

Do they say to themselves. “Yes, that’s one of us/I’m one of them”. Meanwhile, they look at someone from a minority group and say “Oh, look at them. They’re not one of us. If only they had an Elon Musk.”

You can pick and choose who’s “white”. You can decide to exclude Hitler, but include Carl Sagan into the identity narrative. Exclude Stalin, but include Einstein. However, when you’re “Black” in America you don’t have the option of opting out, or being opted out. You wake up that way, and only that way.

Racism in America is ultimately about how people look.

And, there are college educated people who will say about discrimination “But, it’s always been that way.” To which I satirically ask “So, then let’s continue to be that way?”

In the news: Twelve officers were shot, five killed in Dallas TX by a sniper. - A Pokemon application craze is at full tilt.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

I Will Matter To You

Paying attention to politics means having to fill my mind with the image and sound of many awful people. A corrupt politician holds my mind hostage in a sense, because if I'm going to try to understand or even help the situation I have to know a good deal about them and what's going on.

These are people I'd rather avoid. Cross the street if I saw them coming. But, they've carved out places for themselves between my resources and I, between my future and I, essentially forcing me to know their name and face, as if I “loved” them or held their mental image in my mind by choice.

Fortunately I've learned how to skim articles for key information, and how to play video exposes at a faster speed than normal.

For the most part, politics in this country is too-often a car accident that I can't look away from, on a highway that I can't realistically exit.

At the risk of some online displaying their values by pointing out that what I'm about to say sounds shallow and materialistic.

Why are there no highly attractive politicians? I'll tell you why. It's because if any of these opportunistic fucks were any better looking, they'd get the hell out of there ASAP.

Many of us have been taught that the more of a shallow thing someone loves us for, the more we value it. It means we were born that way. It means we didn’t have to do a little dance to get others to like us, and to see us as relevant too.

It would be worth exploring the side in us that wants as many eyes on us as possible. I bet we'd find that the ubiquity of that cultural trope is a recent phenomenon.

I think that throughout history most people haven't wanted to be famous. But, with the advent of social media like facebook, which was born out of a socially frustrated soul, we all want our name to resound like Alexander the Great's.

Sunday, January 31, 2016



    At music stores nowadays, and maybe it's the same in other areas of shopping, it's fend for yourself. The store acts like it's completely absolved from selling you a shitty product “Yeah, 'Zeus' pre-amps are crap nowadays”, and you're supposed to just stand there and nod your head in agreement with the employee. You sold me this shit buddy! Why are you knowingly selling crappy products? What good are the people working there if ultimately the decision's on you?
    As a musician, I'm not necessarily an audio technician that knows all the nuances of the latest builds. This is a critical impasse. - So, you decide to go with the $999.00 thing that says “Pro” in its title, because it's been the industry standard in studios for decades, so you forgo the 25% “we'll act like we sold this thing to you for longer than a month” fee—out of some archaic back-in-my-day principle of honor, then realize that it's buggy as shit! Is every component you buy a required research project for the consumer? Shouldn't the company have researched whether or not it was making or selling a shitty product before putting it on the market? It's like our world is saying “Hey man! Just don't get much of anything done. But, don't feel bad. You're not alone! We're all lost in the fog of the consumer war. And here, buy this extra component to remedy the state of the art piece-of-shit you're responsible for buying at our store.” Pat, pat, pat, on the back. “Would you like to get extra coverage on that?” 
    It's clear that companies don't do what's great, they do whatever they've calculated they can get away with. Leaving you holding the bag, and your principles, and the address to the manufacturer in Green Earth, Minnesota.
    I'll see you all in the help forums.