Thursday, August 19, 2010

Illuminati Alert: Pact to End the Internet (as we know it)

Googgle and Verizon have gone public with their "policy framework" -- better known as the pact to end the Internet as we know it.

News of this deal broke this week, sparking a public outcry that's seen hundreds of thousands of Internet users calling on Google to live up to its "Don't Be Evil" pledge.

But cut through the platitudes the two companies (Googizon, anyone?) offered on today's press call, and you'll find this deal is even worse than advertised.

The proposal is one massive loophole that sets the stage for the corporate takeover of the Internet. Real Net Neutrality means that Internet service providers can't discriminate between different kinds of online content and applications. It guarantees a level playing field for all Web sites and Internet technologies. It's what makes sure the next Google, out there in a garage somewhere, has just as good a chance as any giant corporate behemoth to find its audience and thrive online.

What Google and Verizon are proposing is fake Net Neutrality. You can read their framework for yourself here or go here to see Google twisting itself in knots about this suddenly "thorny issue." But here are the basics of what the two companies are proposing:

1. Under their proposal, there would be no Net Neutrality on wireless networks -- meaning anything goes, from blocking websites and applications to pay-for-priority treatment.

2. Their proposed standard for "non-discrimination" on wired networks is so weak that actions like Comcast's widely denounced blocking of BitTorrent would be allowed.

3. The deal would let ISPs like Verizon -- instead of Internet users like you -- decide which applications deserve the best quality of service. That's not the way the Internet has ever worked, and it threatens to close the door on tomorrow's innovative applications. (If RealPlayer had been favored a few years ago, would we ever have gotten YouTube?)

4. The deal would allow ISPs to effectively split the Internet into "two pipes" -- one of which would be reserved for "managed services," a pay-for-play platform for content and applications. This is the proverbial toll road on the information superhighway, a fast lane reserved for the select few, while the rest of us are stuck on the cyber-equivalent of a winding dirt road.

5. The pact proposes to turn the Federal Communications Commission into a toothless watchdog, left fruitlessly chasing consumer complaints but unable to make rules of its own. Instead, it would leave it up to unaccountable (and almost surely industry-controlled) third parties to decide what the rules should be.

If there's a silver lining in this whole fiasco it's that, last I checked anyway, it wasn't up to Google and Verizon to write the rules. That's why we have Congress and the FCC.

Certainly by now we should have learned -- from AIG, Massey Energy, BP, you name it -- what happens when we let big companies regulate themselves or hope they'll do the right thing.
We need the FCC -- with the backing of Congress and President Obama -- to step and do the hard work of governing. That means restoring the FCC's authority to protect Internet users and safeguarding real Net Neutrality once and for all.

Such a move might not be popular on Wall Street or even in certain corners of Silicon Valley, but it's the kind of leadership the public needs right now.

If you haven't yet told the FCC why we need Net Neutrality, please do it now.

- written by Craig Aaron

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Beelzebub's Tales (Updated)

George Ivanovich Gurdjieff was a mystic and spiritual teacher. He described his teaching as "Esoteric Christianity". Gurdjieff's teaching mainly addresses the question of people's place in Universe and their possibilities for inner development. He also emphasized that people live their lives in a state he referred to as "waking sleep," but that higher levels of consciousness, higher bodies, and various inner abilities are possible. He claimed that the teachings he brought to the West from his own experiences and early travels expressed the truth found in ancient mystery religions.

Although he called his discipline "The Work" (ie: work on oneself)… in his early lectures, Gurdjieff described his approach to self-development as a "Fourth Way". In contrast to the three eastern teachings that emphasize the development of the body, mind, or the emotions separately, Gurdjieff's exercises worked on all three at the same time to promote comprehensive and balanced inner development.

The Enneagram is a figure published in 1947 in In Search of the Miraculous by P.D. Ouspensky, and an integral part of the so-called Fourth Way esoteric system associated with Gurdjieff. The term "enneagram" derives from two Greek words, ennea (nine) and grammos (something written or drawn). These six points together with the point numbered 9 are said to represent the main stages of any complete process, and can be related to the notes of a musical octave, 9 being equivalent to "Do" and 1 to "Re" etc. The points numbered 3 and 6 are said to represent "shock points" which affect the way a process develops.

Ouspensky claimed in In Search of the Miraculous that the enneagram was part of the teachings originally presented by G.I. Gurdjieff in Russia during the First World War. Gurdjieff is quoted by Ouspensky as claiming that this form of enneagram was an ancient secret and was now only being partly revealed for the first time.

According to Gurdjieff, the figure can be used to describe any natural whole phenomenon, cosmos, process in life or any other piece of knowledge. The figure is the central organizing glyph of the Fourth Way's view of the material world which Gurdjieff is quoted by Ouspensky as relating to alchemy.

The creation of universe is also described in In Search of the Miraculous in terms of an octave, the Ray of Creation and therefore implicitly in terms of an enneagram. This concept most closley resembles the Eight Brain Model of Consciousness utilized in Tekgnostics.



Gurdjieff presented his teachings in a book trilogy entitled "All and Everything". Book one being written as a science fiction epic… “Beelzebub's Tales to His Grandson”.

The plot of Beelzebub's Tales primarily revolves around the ruminations of an extraterrestrial known as "Beelzebub" to his grandson Hassein, as they travel through space towards Beelzebub's home planet "Karatas" on the spaceship Karnak. It mainly recounts the adventures and travails of Beelzebub amongst the 'three-brained beings' (humans) of the planet Earth. Beelzebub covers the entire history of the strange behaviors and customs of these beings.

Opinions on Gurdjieff's writings and activities are divided. Sympathizers regard him as a charismatic master who brought new knowledge into Western culture, a psychology and cosmology that enable insights beyond those provided by established science. Critics assert he was simply a charlatan with a large ego and a constant need for self-glorification.

- taken in part from wikpedia

A global database of Fourth Way contacts can be found here.