Henson complains to the Appeals Division

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Keith Henson

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Oct 18, 2001, 4:44:46 PM10/18/01
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H. Keith Henson
2237 Munns Ave.
Oakville, ON L6H 3M9 Canada
905-844-6216
hkhe...@home.com

October 17, 2001

Frita Sonksen
Hall of Justice
Appeals Division
4100 Main Street.
Riverside, CA 92501
909-955-1565


Dear Ms Sonksen:

I received the Clerk's transcript late last week. Thank you for
sending it.

I have been racking my brains to find a diplomatic way to inform you
that the transcript of my case has been altered from what happened at
the trial. This may be an impossible task.

On April 18, 2001 my lawyer, Jim Harr, filed a motion, a declaration
by Frank Oliver, and a thick exhibit detailing abusive practices of
Scientology, particularly those of paying witnesses for false
testimony, training Scientology agents to lie ("outflow false data"),
and policies for abuse of enemies of Scientology through the courts.

The judge ruled against Mr. Harr's motion early on April 19. Since
these three documents had been stamped "received" the previous day
rather than filed, and Mr. Harr and I wanted the material preserved
for the appeal record, Mr. Harr asked the judge right after he ruled
if the motion and related material had been filed. The judge
consulted with the clerk and, over the objection of DDA Robert
Schwarz, stated on the record that it had been filed. DDA Schwarz was
obviously acting for Scientology to keep this very damaging material
out of the public record.

If my recollection of these events, along with Mr. Harr's and my
published report made at the time are correct, then the Clerk's
transcript is incorrect in a number of places.

Mr. Harr's motion of April 18, 2001, Frank Oliver's declaration of
that date and the attached exhibits are all missing. Also there is no
mention of the judge's ruling on the motion in the minute order of
April 19, 2001, though rulings on other matters for that date are
recorded.

I cannot verify what the judge said from the court reporter's
transcript because that part of the trial transcript is simply missing
from what I was provided. Could it be that this portion of the trial
transcript was left out in order to be consistent with the missing
documents and ruling? I have historical reasons to be concerned.

This case started with an attempt to frame me for failure to appear.

Charges were filed on September 1, 2000 for an arraignment on
September 15, 2000. That date "just happened" to be the same as a
date already set for my deposition in a civil case, Hurtado v. Berry.
The deposition (by Scientology) was pointless (implying other motives)
since I knew nothing that could possibly relate to Hurtado.

The court in Hemet did not follow the correct procedure to notify me
of the arraignment. I was later given the copy that should have been
mailed to me. I still have it. It has never been folded. The very
first entry in the case print for 9/1/00 is "Release with: LETTER FROM
DA TO APPEAR7" [sic]. This was false information placed in the court
records because I was not in custody, nor was I even in the county
that day. The entry on 9/12/00 for payment of 50 cents was
Scientology buying a copy of the one page case record for filing in my
bankruptcy case for a hearing the next day.

Thus through complete mischance in Hurtado and my bankruptcy case I
found out about the arraignment. This negated an obvious attempt by
the DA (and possibly the court itself) in concert with Scientology, to
use falsified court records to frame me for "failure to appear."

So this is not the first time the court record in this case has been
tampered with to my disadvantage.

Court records going missing or being changed is a common feature of
Scientology cases all over the world so I was not particularly
surprised to discover missing and incomplete documents when I looked
through the Clerk's transcript.

If this were a regular appellate court my counsel or I would be filing
a motion to augment the appellate record to add the excluded documents
and perhaps for a protective order on the case file contents. I
cannot find anything in the local Riverside rules equivalent to this.

Several concerned lawyers are now reviewing my possible options. This
letter is to create a public record, to put the court on notice about
the altering of the court's records, and to seek its assistance in
correcting what has occurred.

Sincerely,

H. Keith Henson

"El Roto"

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Oct 18, 2001, 8:34:35 PM10/18/01
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"Keith Henson" <hkhe...@home.com> wrote in message
news:3bcf3efd...@news2.lightlink.com...

> H. Keith Henson
> 2237 Munns Ave.
> Oakville, ON L6H 3M9 Canada
> 905-844-6216
> hkhe...@home.com
>
> October 17, 2001
>
> Frita Sonksen
> Hall of Justice
> Appeals Division
> 4100 Main Street.
> Riverside, CA 92501
> 909-955-1565
>
>
> Dear Ms Sonksen:
>
> I received the Clerk's transcript late last week. Thank you for
> sending it.
>
> I have been racking my brains to find a diplomatic way to inform you
> that the transcript of my case has been altered from what happened at
> the trial. This may be an impossible task.

<snip for bandwidth>

I disagree. I think it was a masterful exercise in tact. Here's hoping the
recipient doesn't hide from the truth of the situation.

Steve G.


Dave Bird

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Oct 18, 2001, 9:27:56 PM10/18/01
to
In article<3bcf3efd...@news2.lightlink.com>, Keith Henson

<hkhe...@home.com> writes:
>H. Keith Henson
>2237 Munns Ave.
>Oakville, ON L6H 3M9 Canada
>905-844-6216
>hkhe...@home.com
>
>October 17, 2001
>
>Frita Sonksen
>Hall of Justice
>Appeals Division
>4100 Main Street.
>Riverside, CA 92501
>909-955-1565


VWD. As I said to you in email, there is no way you should stand for
this crap. Do what Graeme does: you may be improperly refused at
every stage, that is not within your control, but what is is your
control is to make sure that any abuse is documented by letter or
motion which is put into the public domain as soon as filed.

--
FUCK THE SKULL OF HUBBARD, AND BUGGER THE DWARF HE RODE IN ON!!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
8====3 (O 0) GROETEN --- PRINTZ XEMU EXTRAWL no real OT has
|n| (COMMANDER, FIFTH INVADER FORCE) ever existed

mimus

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Oct 18, 2001, 10:52:40 PM10/18/01
to
Dave Bird <da...@xemu.demon.co.uk> wrote:

>In article<3bcf3efd...@news2.lightlink.com>, Keith Henson
><hkhe...@home.com> writes:
>>H. Keith Henson
>>2237 Munns Ave.
>>Oakville, ON L6H 3M9 Canada
>>905-844-6216
>>hkhe...@home.com
>>
>>October 17, 2001
>>
>>Frita Sonksen
>>Hall of Justice
>>Appeals Division
>>4100 Main Street.
>>Riverside, CA 92501
>>909-955-1565
>
>
> VWD. As I said to you in email, there is no way you should stand for
> this crap. Do what Graeme does: you may be improperly refused at
> every stage, that is not within your control, but what is is your
> control is to make sure that any abuse is documented by letter or
> motion which is put into the public domain as soon as filed.

All of this, for decades, is building a magnificent class- action tort
case against the State of California, which justice system, executive
branch police agencies and legislative oversight are and have been so
grossly malfeasant in these matters all along as to merit historical
awards.

Along with all those of the US Federal government . . . .

--
tinmi...@hotmail.com

I saw
many people
reduced to
incoherent babbling,
stripping off clothes,
crawling around on the ground,
banging heads, limbs and other body parts
against furniture and walls,
barking,
losing all sense of one's identity
and intense and persistent suicidal ideation.

--Declaration of Andre Tabayoyon

I'm an OT.--Lisa McPherson

If you imagine 40-50 Scientologists
posting on the Internet every few days,
we'll just run the SP's right off the system.
It will be quite simple, actually.

--Elaine Siegel, OSA INT (1996)

Case 5/BTLA/SP1/BAD

KSJ

(And, BTW: Xenu Xenu Xenu!)


-----= Posted via Newsfeeds.Com, Uncensored Usenet News =-----
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mimus

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Oct 18, 2001, 10:53:30 PM10/18/01
to
hkhe...@home.com (Keith Henson) wrote:

This was excellent, precise and understated.

And should read well in court . . . .

--

michael pattinson

unread,
Oct 19, 2001, 2:46:05 AM10/19/01
to
Thanks Keith,
An excellent letter. Very clear and O.T. lol
I wish you well with getting the injustices dished out to you
eradicated one day for sure.
It was a travesty of justice!
Love,
MIchael.


hkhe...@home.com (Keith Henson) wrote in message news:<3bcf3efd...@news2.lightlink.com>...

Bid

unread,
Oct 19, 2001, 5:31:20 AM10/19/01
to
Excellent letter Keith !

Bid


On Thu, 18 Oct 2001 20:44:46 GMT, hkhe...@home.com (Keith Henson)
wrote:

Beverly Rice

unread,
Oct 19, 2001, 6:37:58 AM10/19/01
to
Keith Henson wrote:

> On April 18, 2001 my lawyer, Jim Harr, filed a motion, a declaration
> by Frank Oliver, and a thick exhibit detailing abusive practices of
> Scientology, particularly those of paying witnesses for false
> testimony, training Scientology agents to lie ("outflow false data"),
> and policies for abuse of enemies of Scientology through the courts.
>
> The judge ruled against Mr. Harr's motion early on April 19. Since
> these three documents had been stamped "received" the previous day
> rather than filed, and Mr. Harr and I wanted the material preserved
> for the appeal record, Mr. Harr asked the judge right after he ruled
> if the motion and related material had been filed. The judge
> consulted with the clerk and, over the objection of DDA Robert
> Schwarz, stated on the record that it had been filed. DDA Schwarz was
> obviously acting for Scientology to keep this very damaging material
> out of the public record.

Hey Keith . . .

since what needed to be known was shoved into the place of
silence that Co$ likes all expose's of them shoved . . .

why not publicly post all of the missing documents right
here on ars?

I would really like to see the:

"declaration by Frank Oliver, and a thick exhibit detailing
abusive practices of Scientology, particularly those of paying
witnesses for false testimony, training Scientology agents to
lie ("outflow false data"), and policies for abuse of enemies
of Scientology through the courts."

I don't understand legal "stuff" . . .

but I think if it won't be allowed to be made public record
for your legal purposes . . .

making it public record on the net would be most beneficial
for "humanitarian purposes".

ARC = As-Ising the Real Co$,

Beverly
>

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 19, 2001, 2:00:34 PM10/19/01
to
On Fri, 19 Oct 2001 10:37:58 GMT, Beverly Rice <dbj...@mpinet.net>
wrote:

snip

>Hey Keith . . .
>
>since what needed to be known was shoved into the place of
>silence that Co$ likes all expose's of them shoved . . .
>
>why not publicly post all of the missing documents right
>here on ars?

Two of them are short, 5 pages and one page. Nothing special in them,
but I can see if I can get them posted

>I would really like to see the:
>
>"declaration by Frank Oliver, and a thick exhibit detailing
>abusive practices of Scientology, particularly those of paying
>witnesses for false testimony, training Scientology agents to
>lie ("outflow false data"), and policies for abuse of enemies
>of Scientology through the courts."

This thing is an inch thick, full of OSA policies. Copyrighted OSA
policies. Many of them have been posted. I think there was a
scanning project going on somewhere, but I don't know what progress
has been made there.

>I don't understand legal "stuff" . . .
>
>but I think if it won't be allowed to be made public record
>for your legal purposes . . .
>
>making it public record on the net would be most beneficial
>for "humanitarian purposes".

Don't forget, I thought that about NOTs 34. Keith Henson


Mark W Brehob

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Oct 19, 2001, 4:07:33 PM10/19/01
to
I know everyone else has only good things to say about this letter. But
I'll throw my $0.02 in on the other side. Try to look at this as a judge
who believes the system (mostly) works.

Keith Henson <hkhe...@home.com> wrote:

> Dear Ms Sonksen:

> I received the Clerk's transcript late last week. Thank you for
> sending it.

<clip>

> If my recollection of these events, along with Mr. Harr's and my
> published report made at the time are correct, then the Clerk's
> transcript is incorrect in a number of places.

If you and Mr. Harr are not willing to swear, under oath, that you _know_
the transcript is incorrect, I don't see why anyone should take this too
seriously.

> I cannot verify what the judge said from the court reporter's
> transcript because that part of the trial transcript is simply missing
> from what I was provided.

Do you have evidence that it is missing? What the court in session that day
but no transcript exists? Are there pages missing? Explain exactly what is
missing and how you know it is missing.


<clip>

> This negated an obvious attempt by the DA (and possibly the court itself)
> in concert with Scientology, to use falsified court records to frame me
> for "failure to appear."


Wow. That sounds paranoid. Provide evidence if you have any. The unfolded
paper, for example, is some of that evidence. But I didn't see a whole lot
otherwise.

> Several concerned lawyers are now reviewing my possible options. This
> letter is to create a public record, to put the court on notice about
> the altering of the court's records, and to seek its assistance in
> correcting what has occurred.

2nd sentence in this paragraph is just about perfect.

> Sincerely,

> H. Keith Henson

I would, rather than assigning motive, simply state the issues with the
court record. Don't use the word "tampering". You don't have _proof_ of
tampering. Rather, state that you and your lawyer, _know_ that parts of the
record are missing. Provide any proof you have and state a willingness to
so swear before the court as needed.

Mark

Frieda Wellington

unread,
Oct 20, 2001, 12:32:46 PM10/20/01
to
Mark W Brehob <bre...@eecs.umich.edu> wrote in message news:<9K%z7.186$Zh4....@srvr1.engin.umich.edu>...

> I know everyone else has only good things to say about this letter. But
> I'll throw my $0.02 in on the other side. Try to look at this as a judge
> who believes the system (mostly) works.
>
> Keith Henson <hkhe...@home.com> wrote:
>
> > Dear Ms Sonksen:
>
> > I received the Clerk's transcript late last week. Thank you for
> > sending it.
>
> <clip>
>
> > If my recollection of these events, along with Mr. Harr's and my
> > published report made at the time are correct, then the Clerk's
> > transcript is incorrect in a number of places.
>
> If you and Mr. Harr are not willing to swear, under oath, that you _know_
> the transcript is incorrect, I don't see why anyone should take this too
> seriously.

This looks like a preliminary letter. My guess is that both it and the response
will go into the file of Keith's political refugee case. If the response
does not have an adequate explanation or correction, _then_ the declarations
under oath will come into play.

>
> > I cannot verify what the judge said from the court reporter's
> > transcript because that part of the trial transcript is simply missing
> > from what I was provided.
>

> Do you have evidence that it is missing? Whas the court in session that day


> but no transcript exists? Are there pages missing? Explain exactly what is
> missing and how you know it is missing.
>
>
> <clip>
>
> > This negated an obvious attempt by the DA (and possibly the court itself)
> > in concert with Scientology, to use falsified court records to frame me
> > for "failure to appear."
>
>
> Wow. That sounds paranoid. Provide evidence if you have any. The unfolded
> paper, for example, is some of that evidence. But I didn't see a whole lot
> otherwise.

I agree that Keith's letter was a bit thin on details and could have been
expressed better. The tricky part is how to show proof of the unfolded paper.
If you don't trust the courts, and as is the case here, things just go
"missing", there is no way that sending in the unfolded paper would be a smart
thing to do. It would go straight to the shredder, as the DDA should have
done with it right after it came out of the typewriter some months ago (from
his viewpoint).

How would you present the evidence of the unfolded paper? Keep in mind that
Keith even put this accusation (it is a felony) in one of his motions for the
criminal case and it was ignored.

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 20, 2001, 3:17:36 PM10/20/01
to
In article <9K%z7.186$Zh4....@srvr1.engin.umich.edu>, Mark says...

>
>I know everyone else has only good things to say about this letter. But
>I'll throw my $0.02 in on the other side. Try to look at this as a judge
>who believes the system (mostly) works.

You raise some good points but youve missed the bigger picture: Henson actually
wants to lose. His goal, at which he regularly succeeds, is to achieve martydom.
Of course, you may say this is crazy, but remember, he's not really the one in
control here; he's been programmed this way by his memes.

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 20, 2001, 6:22:14 PM10/20/01
to
On 20 Oct 2001 12:17:36 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
wrote:

>In article <9K%z7.186$Zh4....@srvr1.engin.umich.edu>, Mark says...
>>
>>I know everyone else has only good things to say about this letter. But
>>I'll throw my $0.02 in on the other side. Try to look at this as a judge
>>who believes the system (mostly) works.
>
>You raise some good points but youve missed the bigger picture: Henson actually
>wants to lose. His goal, at which he regularly succeeds, is to achieve martydom.
>Of course, you may say this is crazy, but remember, he's not really the one in
>control here; he's been programmed this way by his memes.

By the way Dr. P, did you ever look at any of the 50,000 or so
articles on the web which discuss memes? How about the ten pointers
to these article I posted? Keith Henson

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 20, 2001, 6:48:09 PM10/20/01
to
On 20 Oct 2001 09:32:46 -0700, giz...@valise.com (Frieda Wellington)
wrote:

>Mark W Brehob <bre...@eecs.umich.edu> wrote in message news:<9K%z7.186$Zh4....@srvr1.engin.umich.edu>...
>
>> I know everyone else has only good things to say about this letter. But
>> I'll throw my $0.02 in on the other side. Try to look at this as a judge
>> who believes the system (mostly) works.
>>
>> Keith Henson <hkhe...@home.com> wrote:
>>
>> > Dear Ms Sonksen:
>>
>> > I received the Clerk's transcript late last week. Thank you for
>> > sending it.
>>
>> <clip>
>>
>> > If my recollection of these events, along with Mr. Harr's and my
>> > published report made at the time are correct, then the Clerk's
>> > transcript is incorrect in a number of places.
>>
>> If you and Mr. Harr are not willing to swear, under oath, that you _know_
>> the transcript is incorrect, I don't see why anyone should take this too
>> seriously.

There are several people who are willing to swere under oath about
what happened in the court that morning.

>This looks like a preliminary letter. My guess is that both it and the response
>will go into the file of Keith's political refugee case. If the response
>does not have an adequate explanation or correction, _then_ the declarations
>under oath will come into play.
>
>>
>> > I cannot verify what the judge said from the court reporter's
>> > transcript because that part of the trial transcript is simply missing
>> > from what I was provided.
>>
>> Do you have evidence that it is missing? Whas the court in session that day
>> but no transcript exists? Are there pages missing? Explain exactly what is
>> missing and how you know it is missing.

The reporter's record for that day starts after the motion was ruled
on. These critical pages were just not provided. An effort is being
made to obtain them if they still exist.


>>
>> <clip>
>>
>> > This negated an obvious attempt by the DA (and possibly the court itself)
>> > in concert with Scientology, to use falsified court records to frame me
>> > for "failure to appear."
>>
>>
>> Wow. That sounds paranoid. Provide evidence if you have any. The unfolded
>> paper, for example, is some of that evidence. But I didn't see a whole lot
>> otherwise.
>
>I agree that Keith's letter was a bit thin on details and could have been
>expressed better. The tricky part is how to show proof of the unfolded paper.
>If you don't trust the courts, and as is the case here, things just go
>"missing", there is no way that sending in the unfolded paper would be a smart
>thing to do. It would go straight to the shredder, as the DDA should have
>done with it right after it came out of the typewriter some months ago (from
>his viewpoint).

The point is well taken. I have the paper with me here in Canada. I
could provide a video of the paper holding it at various angles to
show it was not folded. There is a standing offer to the court to
provide it for inspection.

>How would you present the evidence of the unfolded paper? Keep in mind that
>Keith even put this accusation (it is a felony) in one of his motions for the
>criminal case and it was ignored.

Yep. The court does not want to be seen as corrupt so they are not
about to look into this issue. Now, a higher court might decide that
this need to be checked out--perhaps.


>>
>> > Several concerned lawyers are now reviewing my possible options. This
>> > letter is to create a public record, to put the court on notice about
>> > the altering of the court's records, and to seek its assistance in
>> > correcting what has occurred.
>>
>> 2nd sentence in this paragraph is just about perfect.
>>
>> > Sincerely,
>>
>> > H. Keith Henson
>>
>> I would, rather than assigning motive, simply state the issues with the
>> court record. Don't use the word "tampering". You don't have _proof_ of
>> tampering. Rather, state that you and your lawyer, _know_ that parts of the
>> record are missing. Provide any proof you have and state a willingness to
>> so swear before the court as needed.

Should the court even *care* that these papers are in the appeal
record? No. Should the DA. No. Are the scientologist concerned?
You bet they are! And DDA Robert Schwarz fought hard for them to keep
these papers out of the record. Is that proof he was highly
influenced by the cult? No, but it is strong evidence.

After being admitted into the record by the judge in the case, the
papers go missing in the appeal record, the minute orders of the day
don't mention the judge's ruling, and the transcript is trimmed to
exclude the part where the judge rules the papers into the record.

You can say the cult was not involved in tampering with the records of
the court if you like, but as I mentioned this was the *second* time
court records were falsified in this case.

The cult is not bothering to put a fig leaf on their control of the
DA/courts at this point. Why should they? They get away with murder
by intimidating the government.

Keith Henson

John C. Randolph

unread,
Oct 20, 2001, 7:30:27 PM10/20/01
to
"Dr. Paloma" wrote:
>
> In article <9K%z7.186$Zh4....@srvr1.engin.umich.edu>, Mark says...
> >
> >I know everyone else has only good things to say about this letter. But
> >I'll throw my $0.02 in on the other side. Try to look at this as a judge
> >who believes the system (mostly) works.
>
> You raise some good points but youve missed the bigger picture: Henson actually
> wants to lose. His goal, at which he regularly succeeds, is to achieve martydom.

No, if that were the case then he wouldn't be in Canada. He's there
because your criminal nut-cult was bragging about its plans to have him
done in in prison.

Flunk! Start again!

-jcr

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 20, 2001, 7:42:59 PM10/20/01
to
In article <3bd7f8bd....@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...

>
>On 20 Oct 2001 12:17:36 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>wrote:
>
>>In article <9K%z7.186$Zh4....@srvr1.engin.umich.edu>, Mark says...
>>>
>>>I know everyone else has only good things to say about this letter. But
>>>I'll throw my $0.02 in on the other side. Try to look at this as a judge
>>>who believes the system (mostly) works.
>>
>>You raise some good points but you've missed the bigger picture: Henson actually

>>wants to lose. His goal, at which he regularly succeeds, is to achieve martydom.
>>Of course, you may say this is crazy, but remember, he's not really the one in
>>control here; he's been programmed this way by his memes.
>
>By the way Dr. P, did you ever look at any of the 50,000 or so
>articles on the web which discuss memes? How about the ten pointers
>to these article I posted? Keith Henson

Yes, I did. Fascinating stuff! Btw, I tried to find something on the relation of
memes to free will but I couldn't find any mention of free will in any of those
articles. Does free will exist in meme theory?

Also, remember when you asked me if I knew what neuropsychiatry had discovered
from their work with sea slugs? I guessed that they'd discovered memes, but I
never heard back from you as to whether that was right or wrong.

lindström

unread,
Oct 20, 2001, 8:32:51 PM10/20/01
to
> FUCK THE SKULL OF HUBBARD, AND BUGGER THE DWARF HE RODE IN ON!!

Yet another dwarf bashing.
Pathetic.

Christer Lindstrom

Nico Kadel-Garcia

unread,
Oct 20, 2001, 8:22:11 PM10/20/01
to

"Dr. Paloma" <Dr._m...@newsguy.com> wrote in message
news:9qt26...@drn.newsguy.com...

This is like asking if speed limits exist in carburetor design.
Tangentially,
sure, but they're not clearly linked in the way you seem to be looking for.

> Also, remember when you asked me if I knew what neuropsychiatry had
discovered
> from their work with sea slugs? I guessed that they'd discovered memes,
but I
> never heard back from you as to whether that was right or wrong.

Are you, by chance, referring to the planaria studies? Where planaria (which
are
truly butt-stupid little critters) were trained to steer left or right in a
'T' shaped
channel to get a reward, then chopped up and fed to other planaria which
then
followed the same channel?

The experiment turned out to be in error. If you actually cleaned the damn
maze
in between experiments, it didn't work, and it was then shown that it was
the trail of slime which the cannibalistic worms were following, not any
memes (or 'engrams') left by their lunch.

Certainly good experiments have been done with chilling small bits of
brain tissue (as part of cancer surgery) which demonstrate that specific
memories or abilities, such as specific words and events, are tied
to very localized bits of brain tissue. The map is different for different
people, and even changes for the same person as new memories are
added, but there is certainly a solid experimental basis for believing
that memore (even individual 'memes') are associated with brain
structure.

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 21, 2001, 1:38:09 AM10/21/01
to
In article <TyoA7.2944$Pf2.1...@typhoon2.gnilink.net>, "Nico says...

Are you saying that there's no direct relation between memes and free will?

>
>> Also, remember when you asked me if I knew what neuropsychiatry had
>discovered
>> from their work with sea slugs? I guessed that they'd discovered memes,
>but I
>> never heard back from you as to whether that was right or wrong.
>
>Are you, by chance, referring to the planaria studies?

I wasn't referring to anything. Keith was the one who raised the question and
the reference was to sea slugs, not worms.

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 21, 2001, 11:10:12 AM10/21/01
to
On 20 Oct 2001 16:42:59 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
wrote:

>In article <3bd7f8bd....@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>>
>>On 20 Oct 2001 12:17:36 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>>wrote:
>>
>>>In article <9K%z7.186$Zh4....@srvr1.engin.umich.edu>, Mark says...
>>>>
>>>>I know everyone else has only good things to say about this letter. But
>>>>I'll throw my $0.02 in on the other side. Try to look at this as a judge
>>>>who believes the system (mostly) works.
>>>
>>>You raise some good points but you've missed the bigger picture: Henson actually
>>>wants to lose. His goal, at which he regularly succeeds, is to achieve martydom.
>>>Of course, you may say this is crazy, but remember, he's not really the one in
>>>control here; he's been programmed this way by his memes.
>>
>>By the way Dr. P, did you ever look at any of the 50,000 or so
>>articles on the web which discuss memes? How about the ten pointers
>>to these article I posted? Keith Henson
>
>Yes, I did. Fascinating stuff! Btw, I tried to find something on the relation of
>memes to free will but I couldn't find any mention of free will in any of those
>articles. Does free will exist in meme theory?

Let me give you a pointer or two about net research. "free will" does
not work because "will" is too common a term. Memetics, free, and
determinism (since the two terms are usually used together) as search
terms gives you about 200 web pages.

Among these you will find that certain authors for example Daniel
Dennett

http://pespmc1.vub.ac.be/Conf/MemePap/Mason.html

have written a great deal about the two topics. This is from a
somewhat hostile review article

**********QUOTE***********

THOUGHTS AS TOOLS: THE MEME IN DANIEL DENNETT'S WORK

Kelby Mason

Most people interested in memes know of Daniel Dennett, at least by
name; he seems to be the resident philosopher-mascot and is often
mentioned in the context of memetics. It is therefore worthwhile to
examine more closely his work in philosophy, to see how it relates to
his memetics. Originally, I was going to discuss some of the
objections to memetics raised by orthodox biologists, and how
Dennett's ontology might deal with them. This proved to be beyond the
scope of this paper, however, and instead I have chosen to focus
specifically on the claim that memetics is reductionistic. I shall
examine first Dennett's naturalism, then how this interacts with the
alleged reductionism. Next I discuss the apparent threat of memetics
to humanity's self-image, and finally some genuine problems posed by
Dennett's treatment of memetics.

[snip]

IS MEMETICS AN ANTI-HUMANISM?

All this should suffice to show that memetics is not a priori greedy
reductionism. Whether or not a workable science of memetics is
possible is something only to be determined by the efforts of pioneer
memeticists. This still leaves unresolved the other concern for the
mysterians, that we should be worse off if memetics were successful.
They argue that the more our "manifest image" of ourselves, as
experiencing and effective agents, is affected by scientific
investigation, the more our "creativity and imagination" is denied.

Now this sort of concern was widely voiced against Dawkins' Selfish
Gene, and prompted a detailed response in Chapter 2 of The Extended
Phenotype. There Dawkins criticises the "belief that genes are somehow
super-deterministic". Even without considering this response, we can
see that both Dawkins and Dennett identify with their memes, not their
genes. Dawkins says

"We are built as gene machines and cultured as meme machines, but we
have the power to turn against our creators. We, alone on earth, can
rebel against the tyranny of the selfish replicators." [3] and Dennett

there is, in the basement, a persisting tension between the biological
imperative of the genes and the imperatives of the genes, but we would
be foolish to Îside with' our genes [5]

If we are more closely related to our memes than our genes, then, we
might ask with Dennett "Have we broken the tyranny of the selfish
genes, only to be taken over by the selfish memes?" [7]

The problem with this question is that it misplaces our selves, where
the "we" apparently controlled by our memes is supposed to be. For
according to Dennett, "our selves have been created out of the
interplay of memes" and

it cannot be "memes versus us," because earlier infestations of memes
have already played a major role in determining who or what we are.
The "independent" mind struggling to protect itself from alien and
dangerous memes is a myth.

Finally, "what makes a person the person he or she is are the
coalitions of memes that govern---that play the long-term roles in
determining which decisions are made along the way". [7]
Thus to think that in memetics we hand over our self-control to our
memes instead, who then act as the Sinister Puppet Master, is to
create an independent self that never has existed. It is as if we were
to say "Who is responsible for what I do, is it my Îself'? How, then,
can I also be responsible for my actions, when my Îself' is?" We are
our memes, and the memes are running the show; therefore, so are we.

Moreover, the memetic stance is just another aspect of Dennett's
broader strategy. In Elbow Room Dennett describes how as a student he
had intended to be a sculptor and that he has "never abandoned the
methods [he] developed in the studio, but simply changed media". He is
making a different point, but this is also exactly how he sees ideas,
as something to work at and something to work with. Ideas are tools
and material for those tools. In fact, that whole book deals with the
question of free will by studying our intuitions and how they mislead
us, or rather how philosophers mislead us and each other by their
"intuition pumps".

Dennett is in a general sense pursuing the Wittgensteinian project,
revealing how we are trapped by "word games": the title of one chapter
in Consciousness Explained is "How Words Do Things With Us". Dennett
is trying to gain an understanding of ourselves, and to dissolve
constructed mysteries. His is also similar to the Freudian project:
"our therapeutic aim...[is] to restore the ego...to give it back the
command over the id which it has lost" [11].

Far from crippling us with a sense of our own impotence, then,
memetics should empower us. For it is not just as a science of thought
that Dennett is interested in it, but also as a technology of thought.
This conception of thoughts is one that encourages us to take control
of them, and use them to their full advantage: if we can now get a
science (in the form of memetics) of the ideas that rule us then,
according to Dennett, we will have that much more power over ourselves
and our environment.

[snip to end]

There is much that the memeticist can better understand from a
familiarity with Dennett's work. In the first place, the firm
situation of memetics within the naturalist tradition. Secondly,
exactly how memetics is "reductionistic", what this entails, and what
it does not. Memetics need not "explain away" anything, or threaten
our moral ideas of self-control. While there may also be dangers in
reading Dennett as gospel, these are not insuperable and may be
overcome. Dahlbom calls Dennett an optimist [2] and ultimately his
memetics too is optimistic. Via the technology of memetics, we should
be even more able to take control of our selves, the encouragement of
which has been Dennett's project all along.

*************END QUOTE***************

The entire subject of free will vs determinism gives me the pip. The
relation of these competing memes to the subject of memetics has
however been extensively explored. Dennett is highly regarded in his
field.

>Also, remember when you asked me if I knew what neuropsychiatry had discovered
>from their work with sea slugs? I guessed that they'd discovered memes, but I
>never heard back from you as to whether that was right or wrong.

I must have missed your post. You are (of course) wrong since I don't
think anyone has ever seen a sea slug learn behavior from another one.

What they did learn was the biochemical basis for memory. I am not
going to do another Web search for you, but the words "long term
potentiation" and sea slug might find the articles.

Someone on this thread mentioned the later disproved theory of flat
worms learning by eating other flat worms. That was a shame, because
it would have been extremely useful to reduce higher level education
to chunks small enough to teach flat worms. College students could
then avoid boring lectures and obtain an education by eating ground up
flat worms spread on crackers.

A very long time ago (60s) I proposed this in a student newspaper at
the University of Arizona.

Keith Henson

Dave Bird

unread,
Oct 20, 2001, 10:00:52 PM10/20/01
to
In article<TIoA7.1139$R43.2...@newsb.telia.net>, lindström

<cl...@carasoft.se> writes:
>> FUCK THE SKULL OF HUBBARD, AND BUGGER THE DWARF HE RODE IN ON!!
>
>Yet another dwarf bashing.
>Pathetic.

Yes, but Tiny Davey loves being humiliated;
he has Gene bring the nipple clamps specially.


--
.-. are there any overts "news:alt.religion.scientology"
/ 0 ' / against greenfly?
\ .:: __ ___ ___ "mailto:da...@xemu.demon.co.uk "
'-' | /|' /|----()__) (#~#)
|/_|_'_|---()__) ^ "http://www.xemu.demon.co.uk/ "

Nico Kadel-Garcia

unread,
Oct 21, 2001, 11:09:36 AM10/21/01
to

"Dr. Paloma" <Dr._m...@newsguy.com> wrote in message
news:9qtn0...@drn.newsguy.com...

> In article <TyoA7.2944$Pf2.1...@typhoon2.gnilink.net>, "Nico says...
> >
> >
> >"Dr. Paloma" <Dr._m...@newsguy.com> wrote in message
> >news:9qt26...@drn.newsguy.com...
> >> In article <3bd7f8bd....@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com
> >says...
> >> >
> >> >On 20 Oct 2001 12:17:36 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
> >> >wrote:

> >> Yes, I did. Fascinating stuff! Btw, I tried to find something on the
> >relation of
> >> memes to free will but I couldn't find any mention of free will in any
of
> >those
> >> articles. Does free will exist in meme theory?
> >
> >This is like asking if speed limits exist in carburetor design.
> >Tangentially,
> >sure, but they're not clearly linked in the way you seem to be looking
for.
>
> Are you saying that there's no direct relation between memes and free
will?

Bingo. It's the distinction between data and the color of your screensaver.
In terms familiar to our online readers. Certainly they interact.

> >> Also, remember when you asked me if I knew what neuropsychiatry had
> >discovered
> >> from their work with sea slugs? I guessed that they'd discovered memes,
> >but I
> >> never heard back from you as to whether that was right or wrong.
> >
> >Are you, by chance, referring to the planaria studies?
>
> I wasn't referring to anything. Keith was the one who raised the question
and
> the reference was to sea slugs, not worms.

Ahh. Keith? Which experiments were you talking about?

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 21, 2001, 1:35:51 PM10/21/01
to
In article <3BD20914...@idiom.com>, "John says...

>
>"Dr. Paloma" wrote:
>>
>> In article <9K%z7.186$Zh4....@srvr1.engin.umich.edu>, Mark says...
>> >
>> >I know everyone else has only good things to say about this letter. But
>> >I'll throw my $0.02 in on the other side. Try to look at this as a judge
>> >who believes the system (mostly) works.
>>
>>You raise some good points but youve missed the bigger picture: Henson actually
>>wants to lose. His goal, at which he regularly succeeds, is to achieve martydom.
>
>No, if that were the case then he wouldn't be in Canada.

New arsoid definition of "succeeed": fleeing the country and living in exile.

Curt

unread,
Oct 21, 2001, 4:58:09 PM10/21/01
to
In article <9qv11...@drn.newsguy.com>, Dr. Paloma says...


Gee, Dr. Pee. Who in the cult is hiding? Heber? The dwarf? And why is that?
Fear of countless lawsuits and criminal prosecution perhaps?

Face the facts you asshole. Your little hopeless group of wimps got yourselves
into something they are unable to put a good face on. No matter how the
situation with Keith plays out, you still lose.

Get it? Got it? Good!

Curt West
SP2
ba...@famvid.com


Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 22, 2001, 2:36:42 AM10/22/01
to
In article <QyBA7.996$pw1....@typhoon1.gnilink.net>, "Nico says...

>
>
>"Dr. Paloma" <Dr._m...@newsguy.com> wrote in message
>news:9qtn0...@drn.newsguy.com...
>> In article <TyoA7.2944$Pf2.1...@typhoon2.gnilink.net>, "Nico says...
>> >
>> >
>> >"Dr. Paloma" <Dr._m...@newsguy.com> wrote in message
>> >news:9qt26...@drn.newsguy.com...
>> >> In article <3bd7f8bd....@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com
>> >says...
>> >> >
>> >> >On 20 Oct 2001 12:17:36 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>> >> >wrote:
>
>
>> >> Yes, I did. Fascinating stuff! Btw, I tried to find something on the
>> >relation of
>> >> memes to free will but I couldn't find any mention of free will in any
>of
>> >those
>> >> articles. Does free will exist in meme theory?
>> >
>> >This is like asking if speed limits exist in carburetor design.
>> >Tangentially,
>> >sure, but they're not clearly linked in the way you seem to be looking
>for.
>>
>> Are you saying that there's no direct relation between memes and free
>will?
>
>Bingo. It's the distinction between data and the color of your screensaver.
>In terms familiar to our online readers. Certainly they interact.

And what exactly is the interaction?

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 22, 2001, 2:51:11 AM10/22/01
to
In article <3bd4dd7a....@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...

>
>On 20 Oct 2001 16:42:59 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>wrote:
>
>>articles. Does free will exist in meme theory?
>
>Let me give you a pointer or two about net research. "free will" does
>not work because "will" is too common a term. Memetics, free, and
>determinism (since the two terms are usually used together) as search
>terms gives you about 200 web pages.

Thanks for the tip.

>[snip to end]
>
>There is much that the memeticist can better understand from a
>familiarity with Dennett's work. In the first place, the firm
>situation of memetics within the naturalist tradition. Secondly,
>exactly how memetics is "reductionistic", what this entails, and what
>it does not. Memetics need not "explain away" anything, or threaten
>our moral ideas of self-control. While there may also be dangers in
>reading Dennett as gospel, these are not insuperable and may be
>overcome. Dahlbom calls Dennett an optimist [2] and ultimately his
>memetics too is optimistic. Via the technology of memetics, we should
>be even more able to take control of our selves, the encouragement of
>which has been Dennett's project all along.
>
>*************END QUOTE***************
>
>The entire subject of free will vs determinism gives me the pip.

I'm not familiar with that phrase but I suppose it means you have a negative
reaction to this subject? Any particular reason?

The
>relation of these competing memes to the subject of memetics has
>however been extensively explored.

When you say "competing memes" do you mean this somehow in relation to free
will? What I got from your reference is that people may be able to rise their
above memes. Is this your view of it?


> Dennett is highly regarded in his
>field.
>
>>Also, remember when you asked me if I knew what neuropsychiatry had discovered
>>from their work with sea slugs? I guessed that they'd discovered memes, but I
>>never heard back from you as to whether that was right or wrong.
>
>I must have missed your post. You are (of course) wrong since I don't
>think anyone has ever seen a sea slug learn behavior from another one.
>
>What they did learn was the biochemical basis for memory. I am not
>going to do another Web search for you, but the words "long term
>potentiation" and sea slug might find the articles.
>
>Someone on this thread mentioned the later disproved theory of flat
>worms learning by eating other flat worms. That was a shame, because
>it would have been extremely useful to reduce higher level education
>to chunks small enough to teach flat worms. College students could
>then avoid boring lectures and obtain an education by eating ground up
>flat worms spread on crackers.
>
>A very long time ago (60s) I proposed this in a student newspaper at
>the University of Arizona.

I guess you were ahead of your time.

>
>Keith Henson

John C. Randolph

unread,
Oct 22, 2001, 4:20:29 AM10/22/01
to

Let me put back a significant point which you snipped, clambot:

I said: He's there because your criminal nut-cult was bragging about its


plans to have him
done in in prison.

Now, if Keith craved martyrdom as you claimed, wouldn't he have remained
in Hemet and allowed your criminon goons to do him in?

As for success, consider the following: instead of getting killed in
prison, Keith got the whole sordid affair on slashdot *twice*, (that's
easily another half-million readers who now know all about the Xenu
story) and his exile has resulted in federal scrutiny into the
corruption in the DA's office in Hemet. Not exactly the outcome your
cult was hoping for when they first decided to railroad him as a
"terrorist" for cracking a joke about a "Tom Cruise Missile", is it?

--jcr

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 22, 2001, 11:20:08 AM10/22/01
to
On 21 Oct 2001 23:51:11 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
wrote:

>In article <3bd4dd7a....@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...

snip

>>The entire subject of free will vs determinism gives me the pip.
>
>I'm not familiar with that phrase but I suppose it means you have a negative
>reaction to this subject? Any particular reason?

This is turning into a class on how to research using the net.
Perhaps someone should bring this thread to the attention of Google
for use as examples.

If you put "gives me the pip" in Google, you get 39 we pages. You can
grok the meaning of the saying without even opening these pages:

The Iceworm... a beaut?" "I think it is," sniffed Major Brown, "a most
disgustin' brute. Its very sight gives me the pip. I'll bet my bally
hat, You're only spoofing me, old ... raven.baynet.net/IceWorm.htm -
19k - Cached - Similar pages

Norman Soldier... the norman And I'm used to stormin' Fortresses,
castles and ports. But this cross-channe ltrip Just gives me the pip.
I'm disgruntled and quite out of sorts. ...
www.hants.gov.uk/education/ngfl/lehavre/normans/tt/pic06.html - 2k -
Cached - Similar pages

(and *please* don't tell me to explain "grok.")

As for why, the entire subject has no factual basis either way.

>> The
>>relation of these competing memes to the subject of memetics has
>>however been extensively explored.
>
>When you say "competing memes" do you mean this somehow in relation to free
>will? What I got from your reference is that people may be able to rise their
>above memes. Is this your view of it?

"Free will" and "determinism" *are* memes, competing ones. They burn
lots and lots of running time on human brains and the output covered
square miles of paper and after the advent of the net mile upon miles
of usenet postings. The subject has been beaten to death with as far
as I am concerned no useful output.

I don't know what might you might mean by what you are trying to say.
It is like saying you could rise above thought since memes, ideas, etc
are also thoughts. It is just that a meme is a transmissible thought.
>
snip

>>Someone on this thread mentioned the later disproved theory of flat
>>worms learning by eating other flat worms. That was a shame, because
>>it would have been extremely useful to reduce higher level education
>>to chunks small enough to teach flat worms. College students could
>>then avoid boring lectures and obtain an education by eating ground up
>>flat worms spread on crackers.
>>
>>A very long time ago (60s) I proposed this in a student newspaper at
>>the University of Arizona.
>
>I guess you were ahead of your time.

I hope you understood this was a joke. Keith Henson

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 22, 2001, 12:53:46 PM10/22/01
to
In article <3bd42552....@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...

>
>On 21 Oct 2001 23:51:11 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>wrote:
>
>>In article <3bd4dd7a....@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>
>snip
>
>>>The entire subject of free will vs determinism gives me the pip.
>>
snip

>
>As for why, the entire subject has no factual basis either way.
>
>>> The
>>>relation of these competing memes to the subject of memetics has
>>>however been extensively explored.
>>
>>When you say "competing memes" do you mean this somehow in relation to free
>>will? What I got from your reference is that people may be able to rise
>>above their memes. Is this your view of it?

>
>"Free will" and "determinism" *are* memes, competing ones. They burn
>lots and lots of running time on human brains and the output covered
>square miles of paper and after the advent of the net mile upon miles
>of usenet postings. The subject has been beaten to death with as far
>as I am concerned no useful output.
>
>I don't know what might you might mean by what you are trying to say.
>It is like saying you could rise above thought since memes, ideas, etc
>are also thoughts. It is just that a meme is a transmissible thought.

Then, if I understand your position, all behavior, activity, etc. is a product
of memes and the idea of "free will" as it is traditionally understood doesn't
actually exist but is instead simply an example of another meme?

Zinj

unread,
Oct 22, 2001, 2:40:34 PM10/22/01
to

Especially since flatworms wouldn't be practical as RNA recorders for
college courses since they're incapable of sitting at a desk.

No, you'd have to chop up and use actual college students, and such a
modest proposal would not only garner charges of 'Henson the Cannibal'
from the Cult, but would get the Vegans on your back.

Zinj

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 22, 2001, 5:29:20 PM10/22/01
to
On 22 Oct 2001 09:53:46 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
wrote:

>In article <3bd42552....@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>>
>>On 21 Oct 2001 23:51:11 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>

snip


>>
>>"Free will" and "determinism" *are* memes, competing ones. They burn
>>lots and lots of running time on human brains and the output covered
>>square miles of paper and after the advent of the net mile upon miles
>>of usenet postings. The subject has been beaten to death with as far
>>as I am concerned no useful output.
>>
>>I don't know what might you might mean by what you are trying to say.
>>It is like saying you could rise above thought since memes, ideas, etc
>>are also thoughts. It is just that a meme is a transmissible thought.
>
>Then, if I understand your position, all behavior, activity, etc. is a product
>of memes and the idea of "free will" as it is traditionally understood doesn't
>actually exist but is instead simply an example of another meme?

Absolutely not. Drawing your hand back from a hot stove is behavior,
but not learned behavior. So it can't be the result of a meme.

Plus the existence or non existence of something has nothing at all to
do with that something being a meme or not. Consider baseball or
cricket as game memes, competing game memes even. The games clearly
exist. You can distinguish between the games and devise simple
objective tests to see if an adult hosts one or the other of these
game memes.

Or take phlogiston. There is no such thing as phlogiston, though
there is certainly a phlogiston meme. At one time there may have been
as much ink spilled on phlogiston theory as on free will vs
determinism.

When you used "the idea of 'free will'" above you are explicitly
showing that the idea of free will is a meme since transmitted ideas
*are* memes. It is a certainly whether or not something called "free
will" exists or not that the concept is a meme--one which eats a lot
of running time on human brains.

If you want to read megabytes, maybe hundreds of megabytes, on this
topic go look in the Extropian archives.

Keith Henson

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 22, 2001, 11:23:29 PM10/22/01
to
In article <3bd48a7d...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...

>
>On 22 Oct 2001 09:53:46 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>wrote:
>
>>In article <3bd42552....@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>>>
>>>On 21 Oct 2001 23:51:11 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>
>snip
>>>
>>>"Free will" and "determinism" *are* memes, competing ones. They burn
>>>lots and lots of running time on human brains and the output covered
>>>square miles of paper and after the advent of the net mile upon miles
>>>of usenet postings. The subject has been beaten to death with as far
>>>as I am concerned no useful output.
>>>
>>>I don't know what might you might mean by what you are trying to say.
>>>It is like saying you could rise above thought since memes, ideas, etc
>>>are also thoughts. It is just that a meme is a transmissible thought.
>>
>>Then, if I understand your position, all behavior, activity, etc. is a product
>>of memes and the idea of "free will" as it is traditionally understood doesn't
>>actually exist but is instead simply an example of another meme?
>
>Absolutely not. Drawing your hand back from a hot stove is behavior,
>but not learned behavior. So it can't be the result of a meme.

I think you missed my point. Drawing one's hand back from a hot stove would
generally be thought of as a reflexive action and therefore presumably not an
example of free will. What I'm trying to understand is this: if someone
"decides" to do something (say, to use your example, to touch a hot stove and
NOT draw back) could that be an act of free will or would it simply be the
result of a meme infection -- or might it be either, depending on the
circumstances?


>Plus the existence or non existence of something has nothing at all to
>do with that something being a meme or not. Consider baseball or
>cricket as game memes, competing game memes even. The games clearly
>exist. You can distinguish between the games and devise simple
>objective tests to see if an adult hosts one or the other of these
>game memes.

What might such a test consist of?

>
>Or take phlogiston. There is no such thing as phlogiston, though
>there is certainly a phlogiston meme. At one time there may have been
>as much ink spilled on phlogiston theory as on free will vs
>determinism.
>
>When you used "the idea of 'free will'" above you are explicitly
>showing that the idea of free will is a meme since transmitted ideas
>*are* memes.

In other words, *any* communicable idea is a meme?

It is a certainly whether or not something called "free
>will" exists or not that the concept is a meme--one which eats a lot
>of running time on human brains.

If I follow you here, you're saying free will might or might not exist
independently, but any discussion of it would consist solely of people acting
out their meme infections on the subject?

>
>If you want to read megabytes, maybe hundreds of megabytes, on this
>topic go look in the Extropian archives.

Thanks.

>
>Keith Henson

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 2:43:27 AM10/23/01
to
On 22 Oct 2001 20:23:29 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
wrote:

>In article <3bd48a7d...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>>
>>On 22 Oct 2001 09:53:46 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>>wrote:
>>
>>>In article <3bd42552....@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>>>>
>>>>On 21 Oct 2001 23:51:11 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>>
>>snip
>>>>
>>>>"Free will" and "determinism" *are* memes, competing ones. They burn
>>>>lots and lots of running time on human brains and the output covered
>>>>square miles of paper and after the advent of the net mile upon miles
>>>>of usenet postings. The subject has been beaten to death with as far
>>>>as I am concerned no useful output.
>>>>
>>>>I don't know what might you might mean by what you are trying to say.
>>>>It is like saying you could rise above thought since memes, ideas, etc
>>>>are also thoughts. It is just that a meme is a transmissible thought.
>>>
>>>Then, if I understand your position, all behavior, activity, etc. is a product
>>>of memes and the idea of "free will" as it is traditionally understood doesn't
>>>actually exist but is instead simply an example of another meme?
>>
>>Absolutely not. Drawing your hand back from a hot stove is behavior,
>>but not learned behavior. So it can't be the result of a meme.
>
>I think you missed my point. Drawing one's hand back from a hot stove would
>generally be thought of as a reflexive action and therefore presumably not an
>example of free will.

But it certainly is behavior.

>What I'm trying to understand is this: if someone
>"decides" to do something (say, to use your example, to touch a hot stove and
>NOT draw back) could that be an act of free will or would it simply be the
>result of a meme infection -- or might it be either, depending on the
>circumstances?

Did you ever read "Will" the biography of G. Gordon Liddy? There is a
part where he is in prison holding his arm in a candle flame till he
almost damaged tendons. You are welcome to call this fee will, the
result of a meme infection or whatever you like, including stupid
which is what I would call it.

The point is that you can't generate meaningful answers to the kind of
question you poised. You can generate models of how human psychology
works and among the things such models show is that humans are highly
attracted to idea such as "free will", "god" and "spirits" and it
does not matter a bit if there is any more substance to such memes as
there is to phlogiston.


>
>>Plus the existence or non existence of something has nothing at all to
>>do with that something being a meme or not. Consider baseball or
>>cricket as game memes, competing game memes even. The games clearly
>>exist. You can distinguish between the games and devise simple
>>objective tests to see if an adult hosts one or the other of these
>>game memes.
>
>What might such a test consist of?

You could determine that a certain
person had (or was infected with) the baseball meme if they were able
to teach a group of children who had never seen baseball to play a
recognizable game.

>>Or take phlogiston. There is no such thing as phlogiston, though
>>there is certainly a phlogiston meme. At one time there may have been
>>as much ink spilled on phlogiston theory as on free will vs
>>determinism.
>>
>>When you used "the idea of 'free will'" above you are explicitly
>>showing that the idea of free will is a meme since transmitted ideas
>>*are* memes.
>
>In other words, *any* communicable idea is a meme?

Yep. The reason we use meme instead of "idea" is where we want to
keep in mind that these idea or memes "have a life of their own," and
are subject to darwinian evolution in completion with each other for
limited "space" or "running time" in human brains.

> It is a certainly whether or not something called "free
>>will" exists or not that the concept is a meme--one which eats a lot
>>of running time on human brains.
>
>If I follow you here, you're saying free will might or might not exist
>independently, but any discussion of it would consist solely of people acting
>out their meme infections on the subject?

That's not exactly on target. Normally memes direct behavior like
chipping rock or making shoes. But people can talk about chipping
rocks or making shoes and transfer the ideas (memes) that in the
process. On this subject of free will, people talk or write about it
incessantly in discussions that go nowhere. A person would be acting
on (directed by the memes) of free will or predesignation if they did
something based on either one. (And as usual such acts can be used
support both sides of the never ending arguments.)

Keith Henson

Nico Kadel-Garcia

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 8:29:14 AM10/23/01
to

"Dr. Paloma" <Dr._m...@newsguy.com> wrote in message
news:9r2nr...@drn.newsguy.com...

> If I follow you here, you're saying free will might or might not exist
> independently, but any discussion of it would consist solely of people
acting
> out their meme infections on the subject?

Umm. No. (I wasn't the original person questioned, but hey, life
happens.) Discussion can also include things like experiment, observation,
etc.

Free will, unfortunately, is a very slippery concept. It is key to many
theological and philosophical discussions: This makes it extraordinarily
important to get clear definitions of it. For example, since the days
of Newton when physics looked like it could predict the universe, people
started claiming that it was possible to predict the state of everything if
you just knew enough about it to begin with. This flies in the face of
free will, but is consistent with things like deeper understandings of
hormones, Skinner's work on conditioning, etc. Lots of people
objected, strenuously, and certain kinds of mysticism became
popular resultingly. The idea of man being somehow different
from all other beasts because only man had a soul also became
more popular, I think partly due to denial of this determinism.
Hey, believing that all your actions are entirely predictable
and beyond acts of will, that even your acts of will are illusion
resulting from brain chemistry, is disheartening.

Then, Heisenberg made *his* observations, and said that there
was no blinking way to know enough about the state of things
to predict them for all time. And he quantified that uncertainty,
and measured it. Physics got *strange*, and determinism took
a serious scientific boot to the head.

And Godel put another serious boot to the head, by pointing
out that the truths about a system are never entirely determined
by the system itself. It means that even if the capacity of the
mind were infinite, it could never analyze all the states of
itself.

The computer fields have done similar things, finding that
complex enough systems are just too damn complex to hope
to entirely determine the state of. You can map out typical
responses, but every once in a while they'll surprise the
hell out of you.

This leaves fascinating scientific wiggle room for free will.
And you don't have to get into the concept of 'memes'
directly as a part of a discussion of free will: you can just
have the discussion, with plenty of material to work with,
without getting into the concept of 'memes', or the concept
of concepts....


Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 11:05:02 AM10/23/01
to
On Thu, 18 Oct 2001 20:44:46 GMT, hkhe...@home.com (Keith Henson)
wrote:

snip

H. Keith Henson
2237 Munns Ave.
Oakville, ON L6H 3M9 Canada
905-844-6216
hkhe...@home.com

October 23, 2001

Frita Sonksen
Hall of Justice
Appeals Division
4100 Main Street.
Riverside, CA 92501
909-955-1565


Dear Ms Sonksen:

Yesterday I received a Notice of Filing dated and mailed September 27.

I was a bit mystified why it should have taken so long in the mail.
On the back of the envelope there is another postal meter stamp from
San Bernadino dated October 17, 2001 for an additional 27 cents.

I finally realize that the meter mark on the front is for 32 cents,
not enough postage to mail a letter to Canada.

On another subject, I have looked carefully at the material
you have sent on the local rules and see nothing that helps me in
determining what is the next required step. I presume there is some
tolling while you sort out the complaints I made in my letter of
October 17, 2001 about the problems with the clerk's transcript.

I hope to hear from you eventually if I am being assigned
counsel for the appeal or have to do it pro se.

Sincerely,

H. Keith Henson

Posted to a.r.s to create a public record

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 1:49:17 PM10/23/01
to
In article <3bd90953...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...

>
>On 22 Oct 2001 20:23:29 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>wrote:
>
>
>>What I'm trying to understand is this: if someone
>>"decides" to do something (say, to use your example, to touch a hot stove and
>>NOT draw back) could that be an act of free will or would it simply be the
>>result of a meme infection -- or might it be either, depending on the
>>circumstances?
>
>Did you ever read "Will" the biography of G. Gordon Liddy? There is a
>part where he is in prison holding his arm in a candle flame till he
>almost damaged tendons. You are welcome to call this fee will, the
>result of a meme infection or whatever you like, including stupid
>which is what I would call it.
>
>The point is that you can't generate meaningful answers to the kind of
>question you poised. You can generate models of how human psychology
>works and among the things such models show is that humans are highly
>attracted to idea such as "free will", "god" and "spirits" and it
>does not matter a bit if there is any more substance to such memes as
>there is to phlogiston.

Do you mean that it doesn't matter whether there is any substance to these
concepts because a human would never be able to "know" any more about them than
what was contained in his memes? And, if that's the case, wouldn't that preclude
the possibility of there actually existing such a thing as free will?

>>
>>>Plus the existence or non existence of something has nothing at all to
>>>do with that something being a meme or not. Consider baseball or
>>>cricket as game memes, competing game memes even. The games clearly
>>>exist. You can distinguish between the games and devise simple
>>>objective tests to see if an adult hosts one or the other of these
>>>game memes.
>>
>>What might such a test consist of?
>
>You could determine that a certain
>person had (or was infected with) the baseball meme if they were able
>to teach a group of children who had never seen baseball to play a
>recognizable game.

In other words, just knowing the game well enough to be able to communicate
effectively about it would be evidence of a meme?

>The reason we use meme instead of "idea" is where we want to
>keep in mind that these idea or memes "have a life of their own," and
>are subject to darwinian evolution in completion with each other for
>limited "space" or "running time" in human brains.
>
>> It is a certainly whether or not something called "free
>>>will" exists or not that the concept is a meme--one which eats a lot
>>>of running time on human brains.
>>
>>If I follow you here, you're saying free will might or might not exist
>>independently, but any discussion of it would consist solely of people acting
>>out their meme infections on the subject?
>
>That's not exactly on target. Normally memes direct behavior like
>chipping rock or making shoes. But people can talk about chipping
>rocks or making shoes and transfer the ideas (memes) that in the
>process. On this subject of free will, people talk or write about it
>incessantly in discussions that go nowhere. A person would be acting
>on (directed by the memes) of free will or predesignation if they did
>something based on either one. (And as usual such acts can be used
>support both sides of the never ending arguments.)

I don't see how you can dismiss this argument as a loop with no solution. If
one's existance is ultimately designed by one's memes with no opportunity for
escape, then there can be no free will. On the other hand, if there is free
will, then there must be some possibility for an individual to operate
independently of memes. The way I read the theory, free will would really not be
possible since in order to think at all one would have to employ memes and since
memes are contagious and have their own survival instinct, etc. one would be
finished before ever starting.

Dave Bird

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 3:43:02 PM10/23/01
to
In article<3bd586c5...@news2.lightlink.com>, Keith Henson
~~~~~~~ "tolling"? don't understand.

>while you sort out the complaints I made in my letter of
>October 17, 2001 about the problems with the clerk's transcript.
>
> I hope to hear from you eventually if I am being assigned
>counsel for the appeal or have to do it pro se.
>
>Sincerely,
>
>
>
>H. Keith Henson
>
>Posted to a.r.s to create a public record
>

--

FUCK THE SKULL OF HUBBARD, AND BUGGER THE DWARF HE RODE IN ON!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
8====3 (O 0) GROETEN --- PRINTZ XEMU EXTRAWL no real OT has
|n| (COMMANDER, FIFTH INVADER FORCE) ever existed

Dave Bird

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 4:47:55 PM10/23/01
to
In article<3bd48a7d...@news2.lightlink.com>,
Keith Henson <hkhe...@home.com> writes:
>When you used "the idea of 'free will'" above you are explicitly
>showing that the idea of free will is a meme since transmitted ideas
>*are* memes. It is a certainly whether or not something called "free
>will" exists or not that the concept is a meme--one which eats a lot
>of running time on human brains.

I don't understand? do you mean that "talking about something
called 'free will' is an idea that spread from place to place"
....or "the behaviour which we know as free will is an idea
which spread from place to place."

I don't think the latter is true.

How much we actually have free will is a difficult question.
We tend to, say, feel hungry so review plans how and where
to get food, and there is another "supervisory" level
(no, it's not a thetan) which reviews what we're doing
and agrees that on present experience. Actually very little
we do which is under this top level control. If you e.g.
don't have thirst to tell when you need to drink, or pain
to tell when you have inured yourself, then it is enormously
difficult to "make" things happen constantly from top level.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


In article<9r2nr...@drn.newsguy.com>,

Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com> writes:
>I think you missed my point. Drawing one's hand back from a hot stove would
>generally be thought of as a reflexive action and therefore presumably not an

>example of free will. What I'm trying to understand is this: if someone


>"decides" to do something (say, to use your example, to touch a hot stove and
>NOT draw back) could that be an act of free will or would it simply be the
>result of a meme infection -- or might it be either, depending on the
>circumstances?

Well, "either according to circumstances" seems to be the answer.
If you've joined some group where the initiation is to show
toughness by touching a stove and not withdrawing your hand,
then it comes from a belief system. If you just choose to do it,
presumably it is your individual motivation.

Actually it is much easier to instruct yourself to do an extreme
action one-off, than it is to instruct yourself to do something
continually or repeatedly, Because, if you have no automatic
habit of doing it, you continually drift off concentration
and forget to keep doing it.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

There are arguments that a single and inevitable future
must exist (dimensional), that there are ways to project
the future from the present (causal), and that therefore
we must be able to apply them to find it (calculational).
I think the answer to them is essentially "yes, but..."

Dimensional arguments say that in some sense time is like a
spatial direction with earlier events "behind" us and future
events "ahead of" us along that direction. Unlike spatial
directions we move steadily along it and changes appear in
us related to earlier events, but we can only actually see
things that are the same distance along that direction as we are.
It does rather suggest that there is only one possible course
for future events, which our choices make no difference to.
Variously because God sees all of time so it must pre-exist,
or because the equations of physics have straight-line time.
Although the laws of physics turn round and kick you: you
cannot pass information, because it would require the transfer
of mass or energy to signal it, faster than light i.e. from
future to past.

Causal arguments say that there are laws by which we can project
the future from the present so, given accurate enough information
about the present, then we can apply them to predict the future.
There are several objections to this. At atomic level, you can't have
complete knowledge because of the uncertainly principle, the more you
know about a particle's position the less you know about its speed and
vice versa. Chaos theory shows us that no finite level of accuracy
can be enough accuracy, because error amplifies with time. The
"modelling" argument goes like this: when you make a model or
representation of something in the universe, you generally use
more material than was in the original to represent only the aspects
of it that interest you. To represent everything in the whole universe
and run its forward practice, you would need more material that the
whole universe.

All these considerations suggest that, although the unalterable
future in some way pre-exists, you can't get information from
future to past. Specifically, you can't know the present state of
the universe to "high enough" precision, anyway no finite precision
would be big enough because predictions diverge, and finally no
real machine would be big enough to "run" the predictive calculation
because it would need to be more complex than the thing it predicts.
So this "pre-existent" future is not humanly knowable. In some
sense what we can't possibly know might as well be unknowable or
freely choosable. We can no more step out of our limitations in
space and time than a cartoon figure can get up off the page
and walk around in 3-D.

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 7:19:54 PM10/23/01
to
On 23 Oct 2001 10:49:17 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
wrote:

>In article <3bd90953...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>>
>>On 22 Oct 2001 20:23:29 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>

snip

>>The point is that you can't generate meaningful answers to the kind of
>>question you poised. You can generate models of how human psychology
>>works and among the things such models show is that humans are highly
>>attracted to idea such as "free will", "god" and "spirits" and it
>>does not matter a bit if there is any more substance to such memes as
>>there is to phlogiston.
>
>Do you mean that it doesn't matter whether there is any substance to these
>concepts because a human would never be able to "know" any more about them than
>what was contained in his memes?

This does not really parse. Try again and give an example or two.

>And, if that's the case, wouldn't that preclude
>the possibility of there actually existing such a thing as free will?

Look, a set of bones in a cave that has never been seen or an
undiscovered feature of physics or chemistry has an existence apart
from humans. If you are trying to make the case that there is
evidence of some sort for or against free will independent of humans
talking endless about it go right ahead.

snip

>>You could determine that a certain
>>person had (or was infected with) the baseball meme if they were able
>>to teach a group of children who had never seen baseball to play a
>>recognizable game.
>
>In other words, just knowing the game well enough to be able to communicate
>effectively about it would be evidence of a meme?

No, the above experiment would be evidence that a certain person was
host to a particular meme. You could run such an experiment and
observe the kids playing at the end of a period of time and tell if
the person had the baseball meme, the cricket meme or neither.

snip

>>That's not exactly on target. Normally memes direct behavior like
>>chipping rock or making shoes. But people can talk about chipping
>>rocks or making shoes and transfer the ideas (memes) that in the
>>process. On this subject of free will, people talk or write about it
>>incessantly in discussions that go nowhere. A person would be acting
>>on (directed by the memes) of free will or predesignation if they did
>>something based on either one. (And as usual such acts can be used
>>support both sides of the never ending arguments.)
>
>I don't see how you can dismiss this argument as a loop with no solution. If
>one's existance is ultimately designed by one's memes with no opportunity for
>escape, then there can be no free will. On the other hand, if there is free
>will, then there must be some possibility for an individual to operate
>independently of memes. The way I read the theory, free will would really not be
>possible since in order to think at all one would have to employ memes and since
>memes are contagious and have their own survival instinct, etc. one would be
>finished before ever starting.

Even if one's behavior were entirely programmed by memes, you would
still have a "free will" choice between buttoning your shirt first or
tieing your shoes first. Unless, of course, you had a higher level
"way to dress" meme where you always did them in a certain order.

But that is not my point about models of human psychology. No matter
how robotic it looks from the outside of ronbots saying Hip, Hip,
Hooray! to a photograph, they will all think they have free will
whether they do or not.

Keith Henson

Android Cat

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 8:09:26 PM10/23/01
to
"Keith Henson" <hkhe...@home.com> wrote in message
news:3bd5f52e...@news2.lightlink.com...

> No, the above experiment would be evidence that a certain person was
> host to a particular meme. You could run such an experiment and
> observe the kids playing at the end of a period of time and tell if
> the person had the baseball meme, the cricket meme or neither.

Knock-knock jokes, they were the worst! (Pretty much everyone hated
them, but spread them anyway!)

Ron of that ilk.

Gerry Armstrong

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 8:10:04 PM10/23/01
to
On Tue, 23 Oct 2001 20:43:02 +0100, Dave Bird <da...@xemu.demon.co.uk>
wrote:

To take away; make null; remove. As in "to toll the statute of
limitations."

And from Black's:
To bar, defeat or take away; thus to toll the entry means to deny or
take away the right of entry.
To suspend or stop temporarily as the statute of limitations is tolled
during the defendant's absence from the jurisdiction and during the
plaintiff's minority.

In this instance, I think Keith is requesting or suggesting that
because there are significant errors in the court record the time in
which he must file his appeal should not start to run until the record
is corrected. IANAL.

(c) Gerry Armstrong

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 11:03:25 PM10/23/01
to
In article <3bd5f52e...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...

>
>On 23 Oct 2001 10:49:17 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>wrote:
>snip

>Even if one's behavior were entirely programmed by memes, you would
>still have a "free will" choice between buttoning your shirt first or
>tieing your shoes first. Unless, of course, you had a higher level
>"way to dress" meme where you always did them in a certain order.

OK, so let me see if I've got it now: Free will may exist on some minor level of
activity but, for all intents and purposes, people are fully programmed by memes
with regard to any major ideas that shape their lives?

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 11:08:57 PM10/23/01
to
In article <uodB7.202$Hh4....@typhoon1.gnilink.net>, "Nico says...

Understood. However, I was particularly interested to learn how this fit into
meme theory.
>
>

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 24, 2001, 1:36:47 AM10/24/01
to
On 23 Oct 2001 20:03:25 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
wrote:

>In article <3bd5f52e...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>>
>>On 23 Oct 2001 10:49:17 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>>wrote:
>>snip

>>>The way I read the theory, free will would really not be
>>>possible since in order to think at all one would have to employ memes and since
>>>memes are contagious and have their own survival instinct, etc. one would be
>>>finished before ever starting.
>

>>Even if one's behavior were entirely programmed by memes, you would
>>still have a "free will" choice between buttoning your shirt first or
>>tieing your shoes first. Unless, of course, you had a higher level
>>"way to dress" meme where you always did them in a certain order.
>
>OK, so let me see if I've got it now: Free will may exist on some minor level of
>activity but, for all intents and purposes, people are fully programmed by memes
>with regard to any major ideas that shape their lives?

No. My example was just to show how trying to apply your simple
interpretation of meme theory to "free will" is logically
inconsistent. Here is another, what do you do when you are in a
totally unfamiliar situation? You never heard of how to cope with
anything like it before and never read about it either so memes don't
apply. Yet choices people make in such a situation, say if they are
lost, could be life or death important choices shaping their lives.


>>
>>But that is not my point about models of human psychology. No matter
>>how robotic it looks from the outside of ronbots saying Hip, Hip,
>>Hooray! to a photograph, they will all think they have free will
>>whether they do or not.

Here is a bit of Minsky on the subject.

http://www.leaderu.com/truth/2truth03.html

Freedom of Will

We all believe in possessing a self from which we choose what we shall
do. But this conflicts with the scientific view that all events in the
universe depend on either random chance or on deterministic laws. What
makes us yearn for a third alternative? There are powerful social
advantages in evolving such beliefs. They support our sense of
personal responsibility, and thus help us justify moral codes that
maintain order among the tribe. Unless we believed in choice-making
entities, nothing would bear any credit or blame. Believing in the
freedom of will also brings psychological advantages; it helps us to
be satisfied with our limited abilities to make predictions about
ourselves - without having to take into account all the unknown
details of our complex machinery. Indeed, I maintain that our
decisions seem "free" at just the times at which what we do depends
upon unconscious lower level processes of which our higher levels are
unaware - that is, when we do not sense, inside ourselves, any details
of the processes that moved us in one direction or the other. We say
that this is freedom of will, yet, really, when we make such a choice,
it would be better to call it an act of won't. This is because, as
I'll argue below, it amounts to terminating thought and letting stand
whatever choice the rest of the mind already has made.

To see an example of how this works, imagine choosing between two
homes, one of which offers a mountain-view, while the other is closer
to where you work. There is no particularly natural way to compare
such unrelated things. One of the mental processes that are likely to
become engaged might be constructing a sort of hallucination of living
in that house, and then reacting to that imaginary episode. Another
process might imagine a long drive to work, and then reacting to that.
Yet one more process might then attempt to compare those two reactions
by exploiting some memory traces of those simulations. How, then,
might you finally decide? In one type of scenario, the comparison of
the two descriptions may seem sufficiently logical or rational that
the decision seems to be no mystery. In such a case we might have the
sense of having found a "compelling reason"--and feel no need to
regard that choice as being peculiarly free.

In another type of scenario, no such compelling reason appears. Then
the process can go on to engage more and more mechanisms at
increasingly lower levels, until it engages processes involving
billions of brain cells. Naturally, your higher level agencies - such
as those involved with verbal expressions--will know virtually nothing
about such activities, except that they are consuming time. If no
compelling basis emerges upon which to base a definite choice, the
process might threaten to go on forever. However, that doesn't happen
in a balanced mind because there will always be other, competing
demands from other agencies. Eventually some other agency will
intervene - perhaps one of a supervisory character[2] whose job it is
to be concerned, not with the details of what is being decided, but
with some other economic aspect of the other systems' activities. When
this is what terminates the decision process, and the rest is left to
adopt whichever alternative presently emerges from their interrupted
activities, our higher level agencies will have no reasonable
explanation of how the decision was made. In such a case, if we are
compelled to explain what was done, then, by default, we usually say
something like "I decided to.'[3] This, I submit, is the type of
situation in which we speak of freedom of choice. But such expressions
refer less to the processes which actually make our decisions than to
the systems which intervene to halt those processes. Freedom of will
is less to do with how we think than with how we stop thinking.

*************

Keith Henson

Dave Bird

unread,
Oct 23, 2001, 9:00:07 PM10/23/01
to
In article<5h1cttsf6i7ee7iu6...@4ax.com>, Gerry Armstrong

<arms...@dowco.com> writes:
>On Tue, 23 Oct 2001 20:43:02 +0100, Dave Bird <da...@xemu.demon.co.uk>
>wrote:
>>In article<3bd586c5...@news2.lightlink.com>, Keith Henson
>><hkhe...@home.com> writes:
>>>On Thu, 18 Oct 2001 20:44:46 GMT, hkhe...@home.com (Keith Henson)
>>>wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>Dear Ms Sonksen:
[..............]

>>> On another subject, I have looked carefully at the material
>>>you have sent on the local rules and see nothing that helps me in
>>>determining what is the next required step. I presume there is some
>>>tolling
>> ~~~~~~~ "tolling"? don't understand.
>
>To take away; make null; remove. As in "to toll the statute of
>limitations."

OK. So I suppose to "toll" is really to bar the way and prevent
passage, either completely or requiring a fee first (as in "toll road")
That's a new usage on me. We live and learn.

>
>And from Black's:
>To bar, defeat or take away; thus to toll the entry means to deny or
>take away the right of entry.
>To suspend or stop temporarily as the statute of limitations is tolled
>during the defendant's absence from the jurisdiction and during the
>plaintiff's minority.
>
>In this instance, I think Keith is requesting or suggesting that
>because there are significant errors in the court record the time in
>which he must file his appeal should not start to run until the record
>is corrected. IANAL.
>
>(c) Gerry Armstrong
>
>
>>
>>>while you sort out the complaints I made in my letter of
>>>October 17, 2001 about the problems with the clerk's transcript.
>>>
>>> I hope to hear from you eventually if I am being assigned
>>>counsel for the appeal or have to do it pro se.
>>>
>>>Sincerely,
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>H. Keith Henson
>>>
>>>Posted to a.r.s to create a public record
>>>
>

--

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 24, 2001, 11:53:08 PM10/24/01
to
In article <3bd63dd1...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...

>
>On 23 Oct 2001 20:03:25 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>wrote:
>
>>In article <3bd5f52e...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>>>
>>>On 23 Oct 2001 10:49:17 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>>>wrote:
>>>snip
>>
>>OK, so let me see if I've got it now: Free will may exist on some minor level of
>>activity but, for all intents and purposes, people are fully programmed by memes
>>with regard to any major ideas that shape their lives?
>
>No. My example was just to show how trying to apply your simple
>interpretation of meme theory to "free will" is logically
>inconsistent. Here is another, what do you do when you are in a
>totally unfamiliar situation? You never heard of how to cope with
>anything like it before and never read about it either so memes don't
>apply. Yet choices people make in such a situation, say if they are
>lost, could be life or death important choices shaping their lives.

So then, if I'm following, there are two situations in which free will might be
said to exist in meme theory:

1. Inconsequential acts such as the selection of which shoe to tie first, and

2. Situations where somehow the person had never previously been exposed to any
ideas (memes) concerning the subject to hand.

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 25, 2001, 11:46:01 AM10/25/01
to
On 24 Oct 2001 20:53:08 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
wrote:

>In article <3bd63dd1...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>>
>>On 23 Oct 2001 20:03:25 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>>wrote:
>>
>>>In article <3bd5f52e...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>>>>
>>>>On 23 Oct 2001 10:49:17 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>>>>wrote:
>>>>snip
>>>
>>>OK, so let me see if I've got it now: Free will may exist on some minor level of
>>>activity but, for all intents and purposes, people are fully programmed by memes
>>>with regard to any major ideas that shape their lives?
>>
>>No. My example was just to show how trying to apply your simple
>>interpretation of meme theory to "free will" is logically
>>inconsistent. Here is another, what do you do when you are in a
>>totally unfamiliar situation? You never heard of how to cope with
>>anything like it before and never read about it either so memes don't
>>apply. Yet choices people make in such a situation, say if they are
>>lost, could be life or death important choices shaping their lives.
>
>So then, if I'm following, there are two situations in which free will might be
>said to exist in meme theory:
>
>1. Inconsequential acts such as the selection of which shoe to tie first, and
>
>2. Situations where somehow the person had never previously been exposed to any
>ideas (memes) concerning the subject to hand.
>

Meme theory doesn't really say *anything* about the existence of non
existence of "free will." If you read down into Minsky's thoughts on
the subject you will see why we *think* we have it.

But to give another example, consider the behavior of changing a tire.
There are a series of steps which need to be done in a specific order
to change a tire. If you know it, this series of steps would be a
meme. If you have no idea of what to do you might find a recorded
meme for you to execute in the instruction manual that came with the
car. Reality strongly constrains how you change a tire. Like you
have to jack the car up before you take the tire off. Do you have
"free will" about which order you use? Nope. Are you constrained by
the "tire changing meme"? Not nearly as much as gravity constrains
us.

If you are going to successfully change a tire, there are very few
matters of choice involved. Of course, you don't have to. You can
drive on the rim, sit down and cry, or give up on cars and walk.

Read into Minsky's material below if you really want to have a clue
about the subject. Not that it matters a bit. There are extremely
good reasons for people to assume and act as if they and everyone else
has "free will" regardless of theory, logic, evidence or any other
factors.

See why the subject is annoying?

Keith Henson

Frog2

unread,
Oct 25, 2001, 3:03:04 PM10/25/01
to
In article<9qsik...@drn.newsguy.com>, Dr. Paloma

<Dr._m...@newsguy.com> writes:
>In article <9K%z7.186$Zh4....@srvr1.engin.umich.edu>, Mark says...
>>
>>I know everyone else has only good things to say about this letter. But
>>I'll throw my $0.02 in on the other side. Try to look at this as a judge
>>who believes the system (mostly) works.
>
>You raise some good points but youve missed the bigger picture: Henson actually
>wants to lose. His goal, at which he regularly succeeds, is to achieve martydom.
>Of course, you may say this is crazy, but remember, he's not really the one in
>control here; he's been programmed this way by his memes.

In a statement realised today a spokesman for the Carlo Gambino crime
family said that Buggs Landry, who was found recently riddled with
machine-gun bullets, "wanted all his life to be plugged full of lead."

"As friends, we just wanted to help him fulfil his ambition. It had
nothing to do with the fact that he was an inconvenient witness the
time we wired Carla Morris to the mains until she fried black."
David Miscavige is 58 (inches tall).

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 25, 2001, 3:01:04 PM10/25/01
to

With or without the lift shoes? Keith Henson

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 25, 2001, 3:16:47 PM10/25/01
to
In article <3bda2bc0...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...

>
>On 24 Oct 2001 20:53:08 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>wrote:
>
>>>>>snip
>>>>
>>>>OK, so let me see if I've got it now: Free will may exist on some minor level of
>>>>activity but, for all intents and purposes, people are fully programmed by memes
>>>>with regard to any major ideas that shape their lives?
>>>
>>>No. My example was just to show how trying to apply your simple
>>>interpretation of meme theory to "free will" is logically
>>>inconsistent. Here is another, what do you do when you are in a
>>>totally unfamiliar situation? You never heard of how to cope with
>>>anything like it before and never read about it either so memes don't
>>>apply. Yet choices people make in such a situation, say if they are
>>>lost, could be life or death important choices shaping their lives.
>>
>>So then, if I'm following, there are two situations in which free will might be
>>said to exist in meme theory:
>>
>>1. Inconsequential acts such as the selection of which shoe to tie first, and
>>
>>2. Situations where somehow the person had never previously been exposed to any
>>ideas (memes) concerning the subject to hand.
>>
>Meme theory doesn't really say *anything* about the existence of non
>existence of "free will."

Yes, I'm just trying to read between the lines to see where it would fit in.

If you read down into Minsky's thoughts on
>the subject you will see why we *think* we have it.

Understood.

>
>But to give another example, consider the behavior of changing a tire.
>There are a series of steps which need to be done in a specific order
>to change a tire. If you know it, this series of steps would be a
>meme. If you have no idea of what to do you might find a recorded
>meme for you to execute in the instruction manual that came with the
>car. Reality strongly constrains how you change a tire. Like you
>have to jack the car up before you take the tire off. Do you have
>"free will" about which order you use? Nope. Are you constrained by
>the "tire changing meme"? Not nearly as much as gravity constrains
>us.
>
>If you are going to successfully change a tire, there are very few
>matters of choice involved. Of course, you don't have to. You can
>drive on the rim, sit down and cry, or give up on cars and walk.
>
>Read into Minsky's material below if you really want to have a clue
>about the subject. Not that it matters a bit. There are extremely
>good reasons for people to assume and act as if they and everyone else
>has "free will" regardless of theory, logic, evidence or any other
>factors.
>
>See why the subject is annoying?

Yes, I see what you mean about a lot of spilled ink. But going beyond tire
changing or shoe lace tying and looking at the larger moral decisions we face in
life, if I understand correctly, under the theory of memes these would be
governed by memes -- unless, somehow, they involved "virgin territory" (i.e.,
had never previously been discussed, read about or thought of by the individual
in question.) Is that about correct?

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 25, 2001, 9:08:03 PM10/25/01
to
On 25 Oct 2001 12:16:47 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
wrote:

>In article <3bda2bc0...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...

snip

>>Meme theory doesn't really say *anything* about the existence of non
>>existence of "free will."
>
>Yes, I'm just trying to read between the lines to see where it would fit in.

It won't, or rather, however you fit it in, you have to fit in every
other thing the person has ever learned or even been exposed to.

Not to mention their personal history and the genetic history of their
line back to the first life form.

It is certainly true that a person's response to "larger moral
decisions" would be to some extent constrained by the ideas (memes)
they know about. But a person's response would be even more
constrained by such matters as favoring kin, and those they consider
to be like tribe members, something we have been selected for no less
than a reaction to withdrawing from something hot.

But the whole subject of "free will" is bogus anyway.

>>>>Here is a bit of Minsky on the subject.
>>>>
>>>>http://www.leaderu.com/truth/2truth03.html
>>>>
>>>>Freedom of Will
>>>>
>>>>We all believe in possessing a self from which we choose what we shall
>>>>do. But this conflicts with the scientific view that all events in the
>>>>universe depend on either random chance or on deterministic laws.

See here? These three lines sum it up. Unless, as scientologists do,
you are going to ignore the totality of science and go with "what is
true for you."

>>>>What
>>>>makes us yearn for a third alternative? There are powerful social
>>>>advantages in evolving such beliefs. They support our sense of
>>>>personal responsibility, and thus help us justify moral codes that
>>>>maintain order among the tribe.

Notice that the way and context Minsky uses here is not only that the
meme of free will evolved, but that humans have a specially evolved
sensitivity to believing it. I.e. this particular fantasy helped us
get along and reproduce for a long time in tribes. I.e., is it not
any kind of "free will" which has a parent take terrible risks to save
a child from a burning building, but the effect of genes selected over
millions of years to take care of other copies of the genes.

>>>>Unless we believed in choice-making
>>>>entities, nothing would bear any credit or blame. Believing in the
>>>>freedom of will also brings psychological advantages; it helps us to
>>>>be satisfied with our limited abilities to make predictions about
>>>>ourselves - without having to take into account all the unknown
>>>>details of our complex machinery. Indeed, I maintain that our
>>>>decisions seem "free" at just the times at which what we do depends
>>>>upon unconscious lower level processes of which our higher levels are
>>>>unaware - that is, when we do not sense, inside ourselves, any details
>>>>of the processes that moved us in one direction or the other.

Minsky is referring here to models of the brain from both his own work
and the very very similar model by Michael Gazzaniga who wrote _The
Social Brain_ and other titles.

>>>>We say
>>>>that this is freedom of will, yet, really, when we make such a choice,
>>>>it would be better to call it an act of won't. This is because, as
>>>>I'll argue below, it amounts to terminating thought and letting stand
>>>>whatever choice the rest of the mind already has made.

And then as all good writers in really abstract areas do Minsky give
an example.

And follows up with illustrating how decision making works.

The reason I find the subject so annoying is that people have a
special blindness in this area, as bad as scientologists do to any
kind of logical testing of an idea.

We all (present company not excepted) act as if we have "free will" no
matter how bogus the entire concept is.

Keith Henson


Dave Bird

unread,
Oct 25, 2001, 9:43:03 PM10/25/01
to
In article<3bda2bc0...@news2.lightlink.com>, Keith Henson

I see why your arguments are annoying!

The argument about free will and time is fairly straightforward.
It seems that in some sense time exists as something like a
spatial direction and there is one single course for the future
which, though perhaps not accessible for us, lies ahead along
that direction. There is another argument that if we could
know the present state of the universe, then there are laws
that continue it to the next state with the same accuracy,
and so some large enough machine could run the prediction for us.
But there are reasons why we can't see the present state of
anything with zero range of error, why laws of physics are
non-linear and amplify error in spectacular ways, and anyway
why representations use more material than what they represent
so there is nothing big enough to either store the knowledge
or run the calculation. And the same laws of physics which
give a dimensional view of time say that transfering useful
information requires transfer of mass/energy, which you cannot
do faster than light i.e. backwards in time. The upshot of
all this? There probably is on pre-existent future along a
dimension of time, but it is utterly inaccessible to us so
might as well not exist for us.

Coming back to present matters........

I don't see us as somehow "controlled" by socially
transmitted ideas. I see such transmissible ideas as a
metaphor for something which arises from individual and
group behaviour; just as it is convenient to talk about
a "hole" moving from place to place in a P-type semiconductor
but arguably it is a convenient fiction based on the
interactions of individual atoms. Just as for that matter
at a fundamental level magnetism is a derived phenomenon
from the rotation of electrons, and electricity is not
a derived phenomenon from the rotation of "magnetons".

In the above example you have missed some obvious points.
First, any socially transmitted idea about the natural
world such as how to roll a rock or clear snow is
constrained by the physical thing having the same nature.
Even changing a wheel -- OK, a human designed the structure
of the car wheel -- the idea being the same is mediated by
the physical thing being the same. Change the routine
in non-useful ways and it stops working. Whereas what is
"only" a transmissible idea, like the fashions and sounds
of what is "punk rock", gets varied as it is transmitted
because it doesn't have any such constraints.

The idea of how to change a wheel is stable, not because
the idea has a compelling force, but because it is
constrained by the structure of wheels.

Dr. Paloma

unread,
Oct 25, 2001, 11:21:08 PM10/25/01
to
In article <3bd8a84...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...

>
>On 25 Oct 2001 12:16:47 -0700, Dr. Paloma <Dr._m...@newsguy.com>
>wrote:
>
>>In article <3bda2bc0...@news2.lightlink.com>, hkhe...@home.com says...
>
snip
>>
>It is certainly true that a person's response to "larger moral
>decisions" would be to some extent constrained by the ideas (memes)
>they know about. But a person's response would be even more
>constrained by such matters as favoring kin, and those they consider
>to be like tribe members, something we have been selected for no less
>than a reaction to withdrawing from something hot.
>
>But the whole subject of "free will" is bogus anyway.

In other words: "free will" doesn't exist.

snip


>
>See here? These three lines sum it up. Unless, as scientologists do,
>you are going to ignore the totality of science and go with "what is
>true for you."

Scientology, in the tradition of most religions, recognizes a component to life
which is not explained by the laws of the material universe. This doesn't mean
that the "totality of science" is ignored. It does mean that science is not
worshipped as the total answer to life.

snip


>
>We all (present company not excepted) act as if we have "free will" no
>matter how bogus the entire concept is.

Then you acknowledge that your career as a "free speech activist" is really
simply a dramatization of your memes (monitored by genes and training)? As I
recall, we started out on this discussion when I asserted that your activities
were a product of your memes and you responded by questioning my understanding
meme theory. Have we come full circle?

>
>Keith Henson
>
>

Keith Henson

unread,
Oct 26, 2001, 1:11:38 AM10/26/01