Saturday, December 31, 2011

Professor Jordan B. Peterson On Virtue

Updated: grammar ;)

TVO's "Big Ideas" series is currently showcasing an interesting talk from University of Toronto professor, Jordan Peterson - from his 2010 Hancock Lecture at Hart House, University of Toronto.

It ran twice last night; the first time through "The Necessity of Virtue" was enlightening - on the second listen I was enlightened all over again - I heard more layers and perceived more of the whole.

His multi-layered thinking is communicated clearly in a precise and sometimes amusing presentation. A great thinker AND a great communicator - a treasure to this world.

As such I'll be sure to listen to it again - so the embed here.

I think the practice method he lays out for connecting to your spiritual 'third eye' - through self-honesty, in order to "Be" in the world, and thus see it clearly, and act in it sensibly - is going to be very important as I continue to try to overcome Periodic Clinical Depression - with out medication via therapy and self learning.


Another element of the talk that has got me re-thinking some core beliefs is the idea that humans are as capable of 'evil' as they are of acting towards the common good.  Professor Peterson says his evidence is the record of the last 100 years - two World Wars and two political leaders - Hitler and Stalin he high-lights, who convinced whole populations to tolerate genocide and mass political murder and torture.

Key to his argument are the results of the Stanford Prison Experiment -

Somehow I have not thought through the evidence at at hand - I have erred in my world view. I have over emphasized the good in everyone with out looking very deeply at the instances of brutal savagery that we are capable of.

I think my error is that I have always felt it was important to emphasize that there is always a way to bring out the good in Anyone. I guess this comes from a great fear of the Mob that was instilled in me growing up by my parents who were greatly effected by the zeitgeist of the McCarthyist era anti-communist witch hunts of the 1950's. That's not to say that some people's behaviour is not on balance 'evil' - but that if the good in anyone is nurtured, it will over-come 'evil' behaviour. Thus it is the best defence against a return of such political movements.

I believe that the 18 years of nurturing which modern children require guarantees that the social is a powerful part of our nature. But Professor Peterson has made me reconsider the balance of my view - as it is also very true that that same social imperative can be twisted through organized human institutions to exploit great evil.

I've posted here at FilterBlogs on Professor Jordan B. Peterson before - "Jordan Peterson explains the ancient hard wired human brain in a material world" -


Saturday, December 24, 2011

A Letter to Paul...

I received this video link from Paul Young, Health Promoter at South Riverdale Commmunity Health Centre. I'm on one of his email lists. 

The piece below started as a short thank you note back to Paul which got a 'little' out of hand; now it's an article that I hope helps those suffering from depression - a timely piece, importantly as at this time of year, when people need a positive take on this topic ( Unlike my last post on this - ).


Re: "23 and 1/2 hours: What is the single best thing we can do for our health?" -

Very well done!

I like those animated talks.

From my perspective, the content was also right on.

I've just recently become aware that I have suffered from bouts of clinical depression for most of my life. My behaviour patterns over that time can I think be linked to me trying to cope with the symptoms - but without understanding the whole.

I believe those behaviour patterns have included obsessive compulsive behaviours which lead to a variety of dysfunctional lifestyle choices - including addictions to a variety of drugs including alcohol, caffeine, nicotine, sugar (and a couple of others I won't mention here) - but also - long distance running, working too much, and reading obsessively, playing too much.
(one summer I played at a professional pace - in 4 Rec. Co-ed Baseball Leagues I attained over 400 AB's - the Major League minimum to be considered for the Batting Championship!).

Done in balance these are good things, but without an appreciation of the whole they can be very bad for your health - even deadly.

Recently an understanding of the whole has become revealed to me; though trial and tribulation, I was getting old - the end was nearer than the beginning - it was either find a balance though which I could attain my perceived potential - or end it.

I guess I found the truth less scary than the other way.

I've been taking steps to find that balance and battle that depression with out the use of prescription drugs ( which have all kinds of side effects, some of which are worse than what they 'cure' - or mask, is another perspective ).

These steps include writing daily ( researching, learning seems to be the kicker ), preparing meals at home from scratch ( thus healthy ingredients ), creating healthy social circles, and regular appointments with health professionals about my depression. I have noticed the single most important thing - that has the largest effect on my mental state when it is with-drawn from the regimen - is exercise.

I've always thought that doing exercise for exercise's sake was a strange way of living; I think it leads to a hedonism and - in this culture so full of advertising which temps us in that direction - that's the last thing I think I needed more of.

So I always try to get my exercise through doing something I love to do already; like playing baseball in a league once a week, or though cycling. The problem was where to 'go' in the winter months when one is unable to hold down a job, not to mention a little agoraphobic due to long term depression?

So, to use the doctor's analogy, I combined two of my medicines, into one. I ride my bike to daily activities designed to broaden my social networks!

I volunteer helping to off-load the Daily Bread food truck at the food bank where I receive food weekly. As well, everyday between 11am and 1pm I cycle to one of the Interfaith Committee Lunch programs held a various houses of worship around the East End of Toronto. Also I volunteer at the South Riverdale Community Health Centre's Bicycle Repair Clinic once a week.

All these activities require about a 30 minute ride to get to and fro. Unloading the Daily Bread Truck is an intensive 15 minute work-out - and the bike repair clinic is trades-person's work; it's physical by nature - so about 2 hours of low intensity exercise.

Added to these recently are some evening meetings towards social justice campaigns I'm interested in - most of which are quite close by and require about a 5 or 10 minute ride by bike.

As I said above, when events conspire against this regime, and I don't get this approximately 30 minutes per day of exercise - my depression symptoms roar to the fore.

Exercise is essential to the regime of "medicines" I'm taking.


Michael Holloway


Beach United - "Interfaith Lunch Program" -

FilterBlogs - November 8, 2010 - "Daily Lunch for the Hungry - Daily Table with Map thumbnails" -

South Riverdale Community Health Centre ( SRCHC ) - Bicycle Repair Clinic

Interesting serendipity:
Inside Toronto just published an article on the Interfaith Lunch Program - "Food for lunch and the soul at Beach Interfaith program" -


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Occupy Toronto "Mic Check Flash Mobs"

" This afternoon at 3pm, Occupy Toronto plans to do another "Mic Check! Flash Mob" - this time at Toronto's Union Station - a conversation with Holiday Travelers. 
Go and watch - or, Join the Chorus!  "

On Saturday December 17th 2011 Occupy Toronto members gathered inside Toronto's Eaton Centre at the Queen Street West South Entrance Pavilion and held a "Mic Check! Flash Mob".

'What's that?' One may ask. Until you've seen one, it's hard to explain...

On Saturday a group of 13 activists meet at a pre determined location and gathered in a circle. At an appointed time one person spoke loudly, 'Mic Check!' Everyone in the circle called back 'Mic Check!'.

This is how an individual at a Occupy General Assembly indicates to a meeting that they wish to speak to the meeting. Now, at the Eaton Centre Flash Mob, the person who yelled 'Mic Check!' begins to say what they wanted to say - in short phrases that are sentence fragments, melodic in nature, and that are like lines of a poem or a song - easy to remember.

Essentially the group begins to talk to shoppers.

Oddly, as soon as a group of people start talking in unison everyone in the Shopping Complex stops what they are doing and looks - it's a production, a play, and event, a TV show. People want to know what's going on!

Occupy activist "R" reports on what happened:

Hi Everyone,

This Saturday, a group of us (there were about 12) met up at Nathan
Phillip Square and mic checked the Eaton Center with our holiday
wishlist - for more say in the decisions that affect us, for our
government to stop the tar sands, for everyone listening to take this
conversations back to their homes. It went over incredibly well - over
200 people stopped to listen, and over 20 security guards came out
(although we managed to stay for about 8 minutes after they came). We
were so excited about how well it went and started to do it all over -
the bay, the foodcourt in the AMC building, the subway, the Bay
Atrium, Forver 21, Adidas, and Canadian Tire - each time we got better
and better, and each time people listened with an open heart! Hitting
eight locations, I think at least 800 people heard our messages, and
to think of all the stories they'll tell! We brought out 10 police, 2
undercover police, and at least 25 security guards....really shows you
the power of our conversation. Not only was it a successful outreach
tool, but we all had a lot of fun doing it as well, each time one of
us say...."ok, just one more"! we're going to do it again!

To change it up a little (we don't want to anger the Eaton Centre
Security Guards too much), we're going to flash Union Station with our
Tuesday, December 20th 3:30pm - meet at the big clock inside Union
Station. We'll decide specific locations once we are there.
- Dress in Costume! (please no scary costumes).

Once again the intro is (and I'll print off some copies again, maybe
we can hand them out to bystanders with instructions on how to join
Attention Travellers!
I am from Occupy Toronto
I have decided
 That this year
Instead of gifts filled with things, and stuff
I am going to occupy MY holiday season
With love
With the company of friends and family
And with meaningful conversation
I will take this opportunity of togetherness
To talk about the changes our world needs
Change is simple
It's as simple as a wishlist

Then we mic check one another's individual wishes!

Please spread this around,
It will be A LOT of fun!!!

Interestingly, everyone listens!

Listen to a conversation about the Occupy between Mic Checkers Roxy and Greg at:

"A Collection of Conversations" 
Occupy Holiday Season and Other Stories of Outreach

This afternoon at 3pm, Occupy Toronto plans to do another "Mic Check! Flash Mob" - this time at Toronto's Union Station - a conversation with Holiday Travelers.

Go and watch - or, Join the Chorus!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, Everyone.


Monday, December 12, 2011

I hate this...

Today is a cold, dark day in my head.

There is a sense of foreboding in every moment. Every senory intake has an aura around it - with-in it - that threatens to swallow me whole. A walk down the street is normal except for the knowledge I own that I'm on the edge; and it scares the hell out me.

I'm older than I used to be, and at these times I cling to the knowledge that it will pass. I can remember feelings that weren't like this. I know there are tools I can empoly that will get me through.

Like writing it out.

Like this.

I know the full moon causes emotions to become extreme: a little sadness becomes a hole to centre of the earth, annoying everything can become a cancerous rage.

I keep it all in check; not too much up - not too much down. I'm my own chemical therapy pharmacy.

I can do this with out the drugs because of every minute of every day of every year I am aware of my condition.

The drugs are replaced with walks and bike rides, cooking for myself every day, writing, abstinence from uppers and downers with long periods (that's my one out; I can do coffee with sugar and cigarettes), regular visits to health professionals (conversation with a mental health expert is an amazing thing), the volunteering. All these together keep this ship on the ocean; it's all towards times like this.

Like this. 

I hate this.


Saturday, December 10, 2011

Minima IV Online Baseball Scorecard - Colour Menu on Top

Originally published at Blogger Baseball Scorecard -

Cross posted at Michael Holloway's Baseball Blogs -

This is a new "Minima IV" at-bat box design which renders four Colour Notations Scoring Menus along the right side of the At-Bat box --- instead of in four pop-up menu, as in my last post on this latest version in the Internet Baseball Scorecard.
( )

'Minima IV' AB box Image - rendered in Google Chrome

The colour notation 'Selection Menus' open by clicking on the appropriate 'base' icon. When you click on the First Base icon ( the furthest right black triangle on the peach coloured, infield icon ), the First Base menu opens, indicated by the 1 in the bottom white box. In this coding the colour notation menu remains live until you choose another menu by clicking on a different Base icon. Click on any of the colours in the menu and an appropriately coloured triangle will appear on the chosen side of the infield.

In My scorekeeping universe: red means Out, pink means Error, yellow means Fielder's Choice, lime green means Base Hit, forest green means the runner advanced via ball put into play by another batter, blue means Stolen Base, navy blue indicates the route by which a Run was scored and RBI awarded. The bottom two boxes are field green and white - for fixing mistakes.

The Miima IV At-Bat (AB) box is less than half the size of the "Minima III" baseball scorecard AB box - but it has many hidden functions that provide for lots of customization for the individual user. Each quadrant of the AB box has text areas for recording scorekeeper notations - five lines high that allow for "Project Scoresheet" scoring notation protocols - but instead of room for 13 characters as in the Minima III scorecard, there are 7 in this sleek version. All text areas have hidden scroll bars which allow for any amount of text - but to keep the look of the card clean, I suggest limiting your notations to 5 lines. By clicking the button a "notepad" is available for any extra notations you wish, or for notes. The notepad closes by clicking on the "notepad" button again.

All the elements discussed above are Live in this example:

Valid HTML 4.01 Strict

Monday, December 5, 2011

( reposted ) 9 Demands of the 99%

Re-Posted from "Working America".
All fields feed to the original publisher

Support Communities, not Wall Street

  1. Tax Wall Street for gambling with our money. Pass the financial speculation tax.
  2. Support education. Put teachers back in classrooms and ease the crippling burden of student debt.
  3. Keep working families in their homes. Pass a mortgage relief plan that puts the needs of homeowners above the greed of mortgage bankers.
  4. End too big to fail. Rein in the big banks NOW and hold the people who caused the financial crisis accountable.

America Wants to Work

  1. Fair share of taxes from the 1%. End the Bush tax cuts for the 1% and close corporate tax loopholes.
  2. Businesses should invest in jobs. Corporations must stop sitting on their profits and start hiring again here in America.
  3. Extend unemployment insurance. Millions of Americans are still out of work, and unemployment insurance is a vital lifeline.

Restore Democracy

  1. End corporate control of our democracy. Abolish "corporate personhood" and restore full voting rights to real people.


 yes  no 

Re-Posted from "Working America".
All fields feed to the original publisher


Thursday, November 24, 2011

What does the "Occupy Wall Street" movement mean to you?

This is a Google Docs widget. I will create a 'Word Cloud' from the one word answers everyone submits.

Create your own Google Doc form here -

Here's the Word Cloud created at, from 70 entries I received by posting a link to here at the Facebook group "Occupy Toronto Market Exchange" -

Wordle: What does "Occupy Wall Street" mean to YOU?
(click to see the original size)

View the Word Cloud at archives -

Or view the Word Cloud posted at "Occupy Toronto Market Exchange" -


Monday, November 7, 2011

The modern, un-regulated Corporation "A cloud over civilisation"

Orginally published as a comment in an OccupyToMedia space (fb).


The modern, un-regulated, transnational corporation is "A cloud over civilisation"


The neo-liberal economic model frees corporations from governments and national boundaries in order to create a 'level playing field' internationally for the world's transnational enterprises. It does this through de-regulation and reduction of corporate tax rates to near zero. The model also hamstrings individual nation's ability to govern their economy though free trade agreements which limit central bank's ability to create money - the main 'lever' of fiscal management.

But as many of these transnationals are bigger than some counties, and have great power and influence in most (and have aparently usurped democratic institutions in the most powerful one, the United States) - they have become 'Pirate Ships' on the Ocean of Civilization. They have no interest in any one nation, and are able to 'raid' any economy, rape it, and then move on to the next - playing one off the other as they go along.

Profit is the primary concern of the corporation, and systems have evolved in these institutions that parse out human error in descsion making (read, 'all human influence'), and as such the corporate entity - and especially 'combines', groups of these entities - become more and more, an amoral force. Parasites on communities and civilization in general. Not only just parasites, but carcinogens - they have the power and influence to lead us into a third world war,a nuclear war which civilization will not survive.

In other words, unless democratic power is brought to bear upon it, Pirate Capitalism is likely to destroy civilization itself. The all-powerful corporation is untenable with civilization, therefore the only modern institution large and powerful enough to do so, the Federal Government - especially with regard to foreign policy - must strictly regulate finance/capital.

"A cloud over civilisation"
Corporate power is the driving force behind US foreign policy - and the slaughter in Iraq

by JK Galbraith
The Guardian, Thursday 15 July 2004


(edited 11/07/11 ---1:14)


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

An Occupy Manifesto?

The following was written as part of a comment thread at,
"Bay Area Real Estate Trends"
under an article - "Occupy Oakland Jumps The Shark",
written by Greg Fielding, November 2, 2011


I appreciate your point of view, and yes there are examples of people profiting at the expense of a long foreclosure process - playing the pirate game back at the pirate system I suppose.

But when your talking about the invisible super-poor it's not about that anymore - it's about real life, desperate, homeless, couch-surfing, slow starvation ... such that your brain can't function, you fall into hopelessness, depression and despair.

OWS certainly is about helping the homeless. By your question ("Is this now about helping the homeless?") you seem to separate the homeless into a sub category of those hurt by the economic crisis. Perhaps into that place in our consciousness's where the myth,  that narrative thrives: 'Those people Want to be homeless' - exists. That view that writes-off those individuals - that inexplicable section of the population we will never understand, those 'Others' who do not deserve our caring any more. That (never said in so many words), sub human sub-culture among us who only perhaps (at a particular extreme) only understand a heel in the back, a club up the side of the head. Those "Bad Seeds", the un-reachable, the expendable. That slippery slope to extreme intolerance that waits down that road - yet it lurks just behind the thinking that created the homeless bi-laws that many cities passed in the 1990's. The out of view - out of mind, not in my back yard set of  laws. Ironically, the same laws being used by the security obsessed Mayors and City Councils to evict the Occupy Protesters and suppress the right of free assembly and the right of free speech.

The beautiful thing about OWS is that it includes ALL this - and much more.

It rails against the whole neo-liberal package, the export of good jobs out of the country to places that have no unions that don't pay a living wage - that prey on hopelessness, despair and fear; the service sector jobs that replaced them - at low wags and in many cases, on a contract basis; a shrinking of the middle class - and now with this latest austerity, the entitlement programs - that are supposed to be a bridge to recovery, a safety new for everyone - are being cut like they are wasteful --- at the exact moment we all really need them. For the poor, a work week at 2 or 3 different, part time jobs; for the youth a future life of crappy McDonald's type jobs that barely make the rent each month is the panorama our children see out in front of them.

This reality that is, and has been developing for some time, is now becoming a part of people's consciousness. They see it for what it is - a slow dismantling of the liberal-democratic-state, the dismantling a set of laws that guaranteed the rights of man: security from the cold and rain, hunger - human decency - happiness. It is essentially - for the majority - the End of the Enlightenment.

And not just that, but at the same time, a seeming collapse of democracy exemplified by President Obama's seeming absolute impotence at influencing the direction of this collapse in Washington - a stark relief to his great narratives during the election.

A disconnect not only exists - but seems to be widening between the elected representatives and the people who elected them. No matter who, or from what party, the representatives dither and dodge, and then pass laws that are essentially a slap in the face to the majority!

Everyone out at these Occupies - from Toronto to Oakland, to Madrid Spain, to Athens Greece - understands these things at one level or another. This is the message the mass media complain is not being articulated by the movement - perhaps because of the whole movements inability to grasp at this point, the whole, awesome, over-whelming gravitas of the situation. This is after all a global economic meltdown - like nothing we've ever seen, and like nothing we know from history since the Great Depression of 1929-1939!

But in everyone's subconscious, there is a little bird tweeting - that this is a fight for the future - and perhaps, it's the only chance we get.

(Sorry about the length Greg - got on a roll there.
A manifesto perhaps? Going to cross-publish at my blog, and at


Cross posted at (tag: business)

As a comment under Greg Fielding's article -


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Like "The Doors" - only Better - Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds


I did not know.

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds - "Red Right Hand"


Monday, October 31, 2011

Can Dark Matter be the Energy Field created by the Orbiting of all Celestial Bodies?

"So then I imagined speeding up the orbits of all the solar systems' planets to that of orbit rates of elections around the nucleus of an atom. At that mathematical extrapolation is there a slow wave particle - an X-ray for example - that compares to the speed of a spacecraft? Then, if one compares the calculated pioneer anomaly diffraction to the diffraction of an X-ray hitting a particular atoms' orbital field - would they be similar?"

 I'm not an astrophysicist, or a mathematician. I'm an amateur cosmologist - I understand the standard model of the universe, Newtonian physics, Electromagnetic theory and Quantum theory; and I think I have a pretty good understanding of General Relativity. I keep up to date with the most recent theories and on the latest experiments being designed to test them - and I eagerly await the mathematicians and computer modeling experts pronouncements on what the new data means to the various theoretical models.

The mysterious dark matter that is necessary to complete a grand unified model of everything has been theorized to be subspace energy - an anti-universe, a harmonic resonance of the universe we experience. Other theories have attempted a way around the numbers that don't add up, by imagining 11 universes - the so called String Theory of everything.

I've always thought these were too complicated. Ockham's razor postulates that all things being equal, the simplest answer is probably the right one. Well, all of these theories are equal, in my opinion. They all attempt to unite our understanding of the subatomic universe, the electromagnetic universe and the the so called 'weak forces' governed by Newtons Laws of Gravity and the Laws of Thermodynamics with very complex conjectures, and bring into the calculation some unseen matter, force, or reality.

 So I started down this path with the question, 'What if we kept it simple?'

One thing that I've discovered in researching for this article is that there is very little known about the combined energy of the functioning of a solar system.

I asked myself, what is the total inertia (mass + vector) of all the planets and the sun of our solar system? It's not as easy a calculation as one might think. At first I thought - well you just calculate the mass of all the planets and their moons, and the sun, then add in the various speeds at which they travel around the sun - and the moons around their planets, and the orbit of the sun - and presto - the inertia of the solar system.

But then I started to consider the combined spins and orbits of all these masses:

  • One must measure the shearing forces in play in this increasingly complex calculation - what fields do these forces create.
  • What about the spin of each body and the different spin of the different layers in those planetary bodies? Some are gaseous bodies that have no 'solid' surface as we know solid here on earth - thus more complex spin and field characteristics. 
  • What measurements do we have of the complex machinations of the different density belts of those planets - the rings of Saturn for example? Each planet would all have different spins, and thus different field characteristics based on the relative densities. 
  • For example Earth's atmosphere has spheres of different densities - they all spin at different rates, and those different rates of spin also have interface zones that have yet more spin characteristics including eddies and counter eddies that create fields, and inter-field machinations that effect the whole. 
  • That's not even mentioning the magma under the crust of this planet that moves according to the spin of the whole and it's density. 
  • And now add in the atomic forces, and how they behave under different pressures which change the closer you measure to the centre of the planet - and effect greatly their spin characteristics. 
  • And what about the forces that come into play when all these bodies enter into the acute 'ends' of their elliptical orbits twice a year?
  • And do the interactions of this huge number of fields create harmonic fields?

A supercomputer would be needed to calculate all these vectors - but so, OK, now (theoretically) we have a number.

But what does it mean?

This question sent me to the Laws of Thermodynamics; 'Entropy' (laws 1 and 2) say that all systems will eventually lose all their entropy and move towards a stable state, as they do so they give off heat. So the solar system is - by the scale of the age of the universe - at a very low state of entropy. All through the life of this solar system - from gas clouds to the formation of solids and so on - the system as been giving off heat - as all thermodynamic systems do while they simplify down to their most stable state. Thus the temperature of the universe is a function of the continuing entropy of the universe. The entire mass of the universe was calculated, and a temperature that empty space should be at was determined - and tested - and found to be true.

But that very broad, macro-calculation is where we're at as far as this kind of calculation is concerned.

Can we do better?

NASA - artists' conception of the
Bow Wave of the Solar System
The Pioneer Anomaly brought to my attention the idea that - theoretically - the solar system has a Bow Wave. As the spiral arm of the Milky Way Galaxy thrusts this solar system through the matter of the universe (approximately 1 atom per cubic metre), the orbits of all the planets create a field that can move small, slow objects off their vector - diffract them. Just like an atom has a field around it created by orbiting electrons - that we can calculate by measuring the diffraction of  x-rays bounced off of it - so too perhaps will a larger system of orbiting bodies like our solar system, have a field which can be measured.

So then I imagined speeding up the orbits of all the solar systems' planets to that of orbit rates of elections around the nucleus of an atom. At that mathematical extrapolation is there a slow wave particle - an X-ray for example - that compares to the speed of a spacecraft? If this is so, if one compares the calculated pioneer anomaly diffraction to the diffraction of an X-ray hitting a particular atoms' orbital field - are they simailar?

If so that force calculation determines a particle wave that forms from orbiting, spinning bodies of any size - then that calculates the properties of a Higgs-boson particle.

CERN won't like this.

You do the math - I can't.