This page is named after the classic flick by Rod Serling of the same name.
Music, People, Winners, and Loosers
Music is a metaphor for culture, society and the individual.
In music, people may play together and the result is a dialogue
of some kind whether a cacophony or harmonious melody.
If the dialogue turns into a debate one "winner" stands out
and the dialogue becomes a solo. The soloist might be very
much better than his or her "competitors" but only in the
context of playing alone. In playing in concert, the soloist
can express that superiority in a concerto but only within
the consensus of the other players. Otherwise the soloist
can only play alone in front of an agreeable audience.
Some people declare the internet to be essentially feminine:
Duality Links(see the geneder related links)
while others examine the applicability of testosterone and estrogen
to various aspects of the internet like Usenet.
To be sure, "testosterone" is valuable to urgency, decision and action;
of soloists, whereas the more feminine "estrogenic" response is more
suited to harmony, consensus and cooperation within symphonies.
The two very different responses may be combined in concertos,
but always the result is to produce something for an "agreeable"
Debates yield winners and loosers. Dialogues yield cooperation.
Mixtures and superpositions of debates and dialogue to various
degrees yield various results. But always the audience's temperament
should be considered.
A generalist once said: "Eureka ! It explains everything".
The specialist said: "Bull ! Your theory can't explain
the pustulation of gremitic fosticles on the rare
glamorious orchididendron which can only live on top
of Mount Everest in December (or whatever month is the
least likely you'll find anything there)"
The generalist could only make out something about Mt. Everest
from what the specialist had said, "Are you saying
you know my theory doesn't apply to this rare thing you
speak of, or are you saying there is no general theory
which can ever encompass this thing ?"
The specialist was obviously annoyed by this question,
"If you cannot prove your theory, you should discard it."
The generalist was obviously annoyed by this answer,
"My theory is very general and you want me to climb
Mount Everest in December to prove it to you ? What
then- if make it at all ? Will you come up with some
other rarity located in the Infernos of hell to test my
The specialist smirked "What good is a general theory
if it can't be tested ?"
The generalist shrugged "Maybe it's good for getting other
ideas or maybe it's good for not having to climb mountains
in order to say something about what's up there."
The specialist was sure he'd won the argument at this point.
"General theories are useless !"
The generalist was sure he'd get the specialist to understand.
"A world without philosophy, and symphony would contain
only specialists, soloists all playing separately and
in cacophony. General theories let specialists play together;
concertos, symphonies ! If you want to play alone, by all
means do so."
The specialist thought he had lost. Speciality is indeed
a subset of Generality and not the other way around.
Or is it both ?
A generalist said: "My theory will surely imply the bending of light
near a star."
A specialist said: "We've never measured such a thing before.
It sounds like sci-fi to me. Why should we waste our time and
money trying to measure something that none of my measurements
even hinted at ? I only predict from 'measurements', but you seem
to be predicting from 'ideas'."
Why don't you do x instead of y ?
Why should I ?
x is good and y is bad.
How do you know ?
It's not obvious to me.
It should be, anyone can see that I'm right.
Come on, it's common sense.
If you are right, then you should be able to prove
that x is good and y is bad.
You really know deep down in your heart that I'm right
and you are just being argumentative.
If you are right then you should be able to prove it,
otherwise anyone can say they are right, and you are
wrong, and nothing will ever get done.
It's like looking at a painting, I don't have to prove
it's a "good" painting or a "bad" painting do I ?
It should be obvious.
That's my point though. If you can't prove the painting
is "good" or "bad", then by my own free-will I am allowed
whatever interpretation I choose.
That will be a judgement upon you, the choice you make determines
the kind of person you are.
How can you be a good judge if you don't clearly define
the meanings of the choices ? Why don't you prove to me that
x is "good" and y is "bad", then any choice I make will
be a perfect measure of me rather than a measurement of
my ignorance ?
But if I prove x is good and y is bad, then your choice will not
be one of free-will, you will obviously pick x as the right thing
to do. I can't judge you, if you have no free-will. We need vague
choices for free-will to exist.
I think you over-estimate the effect of proofs. Even with
a definitive proof that x is good and y is bad, people will
not always choose what is better for them. They might even pick
x one day, and y on another day, at random, to really show that
they still have free-will despite your overwhelming evidence
that they don't have free-will.
I didn't say "they don't have free-will". You're putting words
into my mouth.
That is what you implied. You said that "proof that x is good
and y is bad" and this should always lead to the choice of x.
When you know what someone will do each and every time, how can
you say they have free-will ? Your "perfect world" where everyone
does "the right thing", has no free-will.
Well, there you go then ! We should never define everything or
prove everything. Doing so would eliminate free-will. That
justifies my not proving "x is good and y is bad".
I see that you are really knotted in your reasoning.
You sit in moral judgement of others, but you cannot explain any
value for that judgement unless the judgement is based on
sufficient vagaries needed for expressions of free-will.
But then your judgement is measuring only the ignorance
of the person, rather than their moral or ethical fiber.
You can't say someone is "bad" for choosing y over x, if they
are ignorant of exactly why x is good and y is bad.
You're the one tangling everything up until I'm so confused
that nothing I say matters. You said yourself that even having
the proof that "x is good and y is bad" still allows the person
to make a free-will choice. And if everyone makes "the right
choice", that doesn't mean there is no free will...
Then doesn't this suggest that it is better to prove
that "x is good and y is bad" rather than leave it
to ignorance ? Why would you want to go around telling
people something, that they may or may not believe in
largely because you didn't prove it, rather than because
it was right or wrong. You might as well go around telling
everyone to believe in Unicorns and judging whether
or not they are "good" or "bad" by their answer.
How preposterous !
Listen ! Some things are "obviously true" regardless of if we
can prove them or not. Just look at history and it's perfectly
I am looking at history. This same argument between us
has occured practically every day since the dawn of
humankind. That, is what is perfectly clear and obviously true.
Well then, we have nothing to talk about. If our greatest minds
haven't been able to solve this argument then what chance do we
"Greatest minds" ? You've become a Scientist then ?
Certainly not. You've even stated yourself that proof doesn't
mean anything unless someone uses it consistently and that
rarely ever happens. Life isn't all about science. It's about
the choices we make.
Like Oroboros, the dragon eating his own tail, here we
are back at the beginning. What choices ? Educated or
uneducated ones ? How educated do you have to be before
you can tell whether you or someone else is making good
choices or bad ones ? You say the choices are "obvious"
but to others it may not be.
All I'm saying is that it is obviously good to do x rather than
y. No one has done the world any good doing y.
I can think of many cases were someone doing x could only
do x because someone else did y. You need the bad to define
You don't need alot of bad to define alot of good.
Too much good is bad. We already saw how free-will was
lost when everyone is good. How much is too much ?
That's ridiculous. You can never be "too good".
Sure you can. You could tell just how good you are,
by comparing yourself to something which is "perfectly
bad". If you are "really good" then you must also
be able to show something "really bad" to prove it
by comparison. So, being "too good" is a bad thing
because in order to be "that good" you have to
simultaneously exist along side something really bad.
Contrast is not the same as Brightness, any boob-tuber
knows that. "Good" is only shown in comparison to "Bad".
You always get both, when you get either one. Too really
be "good" you have to be niether good nor bad. You must
Now you're trying to convert me to Zen or something. First
you tried to convert me to science and then you pointed
out how science can prove things but they can't force anyone
to believe those proofs and now your spouting off eastern
philosophical mumbo jumbo about "being good by being not good"
or something like that. You're so confused ! It's so obvious
to me, that walking in front of a bus is not a good thing
to do, even if the proof of this fact is not something I would
want to do.
You're absolutely right. There are many facts that are
"common sense" ones like "not walking in front of a bus",
but these are somehow "proven" to people, otherwise it
would be a common occurence. People don't take statements
on faith unless they are compelled to by lack of evidence.
Where evidence is available, people demand proof.
"Courts of law" are based upon the availability of evidence
where possible. They rarely if ever have definitive proof
of someone's guilt but rely on evidence as much as possible
and then at the very end, make a decision, filling in whatever
lack of evidence there is, with a faith in the whatever
decision they make. We don't have courts of law that don't
admit any evidence and we don't expect courts of law
to fabricate false evidence either. Life is a mixture of
facts and faith and giving-up either leads to bad things.
Religion and Science are both essential like Good and Bad
but having too much of one, is as bad as having too much
of the other.
This is too funky for me. I'll stick to my ideas thank you.
Whatever makes you happy. You are happy aren't you ?
I was until I met you.
You only thought you _were_.
If you are "really happy", "time" wouldn't matter;
you wouldn't ever say "I was happy." or "I will be happy."
Real happiness doesn't depend on the time-of-day otherwise
you could say "I was happy 1.43043 seconds ago and now
I'm not, oh ! but now I am again 0.09 seconds later,..."
You either are happy or you aren't. If you are, then
meeting me shouldn't matter one bit.