Jugband Blues

swimmerguy's picture

I remember watching news reports about the fall of Enron, but I don't remember 9/11, even though that was only like 2 months before...

That is weird... I guess I can't control my memory...

Anyway, I'm reading a book about that scandal thing now, and it keeps getting weirder and weirder.
I mean, first they started legitimate, then got a little sleazy, then layered on the sleaze more and more until finally it became illegal at some point, they're not really sure where.
The problem at that point was they didn't know when their business practices went from sleazy to illegal.

Like early on they switched to an accounting system where, basically, if they signed a 10 year deal with someone, and they were going to give them gas, and the person would pay them $10 million a year for that, they would, the moment they signed the deal, write down in their books that they got $100 million in profit, even though they wouldn't actually have all the money for 10 years.
Rather than writing down the money as it came in...

Then they had a series of incredibly complicated deals which basically consisted of borrowing money to buy their own stock, then listing that as an asset, and therefore profit, which would then make the stock price rise, which they'd use to pay back the borrowed money.
And basically a circle of logic, but the problem was it would easily go the other way...

And they had all sorts of ways to basically pretend they had money they didn't...

Pretty fuckin weird.

In other news...
Jun, CAG, been talking to him more than before... Always good.
He's pretty cool.

You know, I just can't get out of my mind how awesome it'd be to like go on an overnight trip or something into the mountains, with friends, like with CAG, and with Shelby and her bf, and we could stare at the sky and get baked and talk about weird shit.
I could imagine it now... Hey guys, guys, like, have you ever like, wondered, how we have, like, an extra-large, you know, and an extra-small, right? Well haven't you ever like, wondered why we don't have an extra MEDIUM? and then everyone'd be like oh dude you're RIGHT, woah... Like, what if you want something that's exactly medium? That's fucked up, man, you should like, go patent that or something, dude.

Really, I wish I knew someone who shared the same interests I do, in like weird theoretical science, and cosmology, especially, I'm always trying to gain an appreciation for the actual size of the universe, to try to gain an appreciation for that... I don't think I ever really will, but I'll try.
And about humanity and shit and our place in the universe and God and all that shit...

Speaking of God...

See, I've seen this guy's videos before, and I rather like them.
Certainly, he's more reasonable than a fair amount of atheists.

And he's smart too, I mean, I totally agree that there should be no "hard atheists" that will say definitively there is no God.
You may notice like, Richard Dawkins, never says that, he usually says why there is almost certainly no God.

And I don't think most atheists have realized you can't say, definitively, 100%, that there is no God, and be an atheist, because then you have to be ascribing to absolute law, which I don't believe in.

I think the guy is wrong though, because I'm a "soft atheist", and I'm not agnostic.
The problem with agnostics is assuming that since we don't know if there's a God, we can't take a position on it.
Well, you can't really prove 100% that gravity exists, someone could be like oh, it's just a fluke that every object that's ever been observed unsupported has gone towards the ground, it's not actually a law, and you can't prove them wrong, but that doesn't mean I don't believe in gravity.
Likewise, I can't say there is certainly no God, but I don't think there is, based on what I've seen in my life, and I'm willing to revise that if there I actually found evidence for one... or more, I guess.

Anyway, it's late. G'night guys.


elph's picture

On that blank memory...

I think it is very likely that the events of 9/11 were so horrific that your parents did their best to shield you from the carnage. This might explain its being a blank. After all... you were right on the age margin of where permanent memories are expected to develop.

As for Enron... I'd suspect that this would have been of great concern to your parents (especially as you're in the footprint of another industrial giant: Boeing) and could have been openly discussed without fear of traumatizing a 5 year old.

You're (commendably) curious... so, ask your parents!


I find that the position of agnosticism is more consistent with that of a "thinking" individual than is atheism.

Atheism requires "proof" of a negative! An interesting concept... to establish definitively that a proof is beyond reach:


This article focuses primarily on mathematical issues... but similar reasoning could be extended to cover existence/non-existence of deities.

jeff's picture


Not sure about that video. Certainly wasn't good breakfast chatter, heh.

Also, to elph's point, there are no agnostics because if you are agnostic (there is no knowledge of a God), it would follow that if you asked them if they were then atheist (no belief in a God), they would have to answer yes, otherwise how could you believe in something for which you have no knowledge/experience of?

Also, the proof is backwards. Atheists don't have to prove God doesn't exist, if they don't have to prove it does? Certainly, it falls to the believers to provide proof, or else just accept they believe in something without any.

"You can judge the whole world on the sparkle that you think it lacks" - Dawes, When My Time Comes (http://youtu.be/Z0FrcTX6hWI)

elph's picture


Quite convoluted!

Irrespective of what content may be hidden in Jeff's comment, rightly or wrongly:

Agnostic: I do not know
Atheist: I do not believe

If your education dictates that this involves an inherent contradiction... so be it!

anarchist's picture

I thought it was

Agnostic: I do not know.
Atheist: I strongly disbelieve.

jeff's picture


So, if the answer is I do not know, then the natural progression is that you wouldn't believe in something you don't know the existence of. There's no contradiction. Agnostics are atheists.

"You can judge the whole world on the sparkle that you think it lacks" - Dawes, When My Time Comes (http://youtu.be/Z0FrcTX6hWI)

elph's picture

Not quite...

Agnostic: The door is open, but I haven't seen Him yet (and I don't expect to)

Atheist: If He exists (doubtful), He's of no importance to me

In the English language there are no true synonyms; there is always an overlap. cp. green : chartreuse

jeff's picture


I consider your definitions to be that of atheist and antitheist, with Dawkins being the former and Hitchens the latter.

"You can judge the whole world on the sparkle that you think it lacks" - Dawes, When My Time Comes (http://youtu.be/Z0FrcTX6hWI)

Potter's picture

My theory.

If, hypothetically, the universe was infinite. Eventually, it will repeat itself, because there is only a certain (albeit very large) number of combinations of elements you can have.

we must choose between what is right and what is easy. - J. K. Rowling