Carlos

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Everything posted by Carlos

  1. simplehuman

    (a bit later) *clicks links, investigates products* I never thought I would say this in life, but: That is an extraordinary trash-can. Perhaps in Plato's world of forms, this is the ultimate trash-can, of which all other trash-cans are flawed and wretched imitations. "...and they all arrived today! They look so cute I want to hug them." *laughs* Just make sure you do that before you fill them with refuse.
  2. simplehuman

    I thought it was a policy to keep trash off of this forum...
  3. I would like to add this amazing movie.
  4. Jokes

    This is Armenian Radio; our listeners asked us: “What will be the results of the next elections?” We’re answering: “Nobody can tell.” Somebody has stolen yesterday the exact results of the next elections from the office of the Central Committee of the USSR.” This is Armenian Radio; our listeners asked us: “What is the difference between Russian and English fairy tales?” We’re answering: “The English fairy tale start with ‘Once upon a time…’, and ours with ‘It will be soon…’” Check out this webiste, the jokes are HILARIOUS: http://www.johndclare.net/Russ12_Jokes.htm
  5. Jokes

    This is Armenian Radio; our listeners asked us: “Is it true that American skyscrapers are the tallest in the world?” We’re answering: “Yes, it's true, but on the other hand the Soviet-made transistors are the largest in the world.”
  6. Jokes

    This is Armenian Radio; our listeners asked us: “Is it possible to build communism in America?” We’re answering: “It's possible, but who will we buy grain from?”
  7. Contact

    "Sagan seems to be bashed a lot by Objectivists but I think his faulty politics was less important than his pro-reason, pro-science stand and his overall sense of wonder at the universe." I couldn't agree more. Poor political views should not make someone a bad person because they can simply be based on honest mistakes of reasoning; I think an individual must consciously reject the good in life in favor of vice to be called poor of character or bad. I would rather judge him on how he lived, his sense of life, how hard he worked for what he wanted, how firm his convictions were, etc.: In his last book, Billions and Billions, he has a touching final chapter dealing with his battle against cancer in which he states that he never feared his death or felt the slightest of motivation to make a "death-bed conversion" as the religious like to tout. His wife mentions this in detail in the final paragraph; she says that what mattered to him, and what comforted him, was the truth.
  8. Hey people, this is Jordan and I greatly enjoy studying Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu; I'm always curious to see if there are any other Objectivists or students of Objectivism that are seriously interested in any particular martial-art, whether it be Boxing, Sambo, Judo, etc. If so, I thought it would be very interesting and enlightening for all of us to share what particular art we study, whether or not we enjoy it, what motivated us to pursue martial-arts or that particular martial-art in general and perhaps what goals or values we wish to obtain in studying it. Based on the fact that this webpage exists: http://www.wetheliving.com/mailman/listinfo/whoopass I thought that surely there must be at least some Oists or Oist inclined thinkers on this forum that are involved in martial arts. *DISLAIMER*: Let's keep this discussion steered away from arguing about superiority/inferiority of particular martial-arts, not because I'm unwilling to judge the value of one but simply because I have found it to be a waste of time In closing I guess it would be comically pertinent to put a smiley down that looks like a ninja Reply away PS: a random question for anyone that has read The Romantic Manifesto; is a Martial-Artist really an artist?... or should we call them Martial-Artisans
  9. Contact

    The book is lightyears beyond the movie...and no I originally did not intentionally say lightyears because it is sci-fi Regardless of his muddled philosophy, I still have to salute Carl Sagan for being an amazing man.
  10. Martial Arts

    Whoops! I forgot to actually paste the link when I said: "Here is a link to a realmedia or realplayer file that is the first 10 or so fights Royce Gracie (a BJJ master) fought in during the early Ultimate Fighting Championships during the time frame when the rules were: no biting, no eye-gouging." So let's give it a second shot *takes a deep breath*: Here is a link to a realmedia or realplayer file that is the first 10 or so fights Royce Gracie (a BJJ master) fought in during the early Ultimate Fighting Championships during the time frame when the rules were: no biting, no eye-gouging: Royce Gracie UFC High Light Video *click-click*
  11. Martial Arts

    "I have no problem with that statement, but it means that the "ultimate" martial art changes from person to person. This renders the statement, "Martial Art X is the ultimate martial art," largely meaningless;" I think I mostly agree with what you are saying here Phil, I think most of the argument boils down to what we mean when we say "the ultimate". When I hear "the ultimate" I think of something that cannot be improved upon, an absolute zenith of excellence. Because I regard MAs as EXTREMELY dynamic systems, I think that there will always be new MAs coming down the pipeline that surpass the old. Because of this, I can't imagine calling some MA "the ultimate MA". To me, others in this argument are using "ultimate" or "the ultimate" in a sense that means more "really great" or "far superior", which would basically be what I'm saying.... *laughs* bleh I feel like we are arguing in circles
  12. Martial Arts

    OliverComputing, I agree that a real fight can be ACCURATELY (not perfectly, accurately) modeled by sport fighting. Investigate the beginnings of the Ultimate Fighting Championships, this link has some decent info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultimate_Fighting_Championship The original rules of UFC were no biting, no eye-gouging; the same rules of the ancient greek sport Pankration, which was a "free-for-all", combining wrestling and boxing. NOTE: Pankration was used in the military by Alexander the Great, here is the story of how it happened: "A third anecdote has to do with a fighter named Dioxippus, Olympic champion by default in 336 B. C. when no other pankratist dared meet him. Alexander the Great became Dioxippus' friend and sponsor, but the pankratist soon quarreled with a warrior named Coragus and the two were forced to meet in a duel to settle their differences. Coragus wore a full complement of Battle-armor and bore javelin, lance, and sword, while Dioxippus appeared pankration-style, nude and wearing a sheen of olive oil, and carrying nothing but a club. Coragus first hurled his javelin, which Dioxippus easily dodged, and then Alexander's warrior rushed his enemy with his spear. A blow from Dioxippus' club shattered the other's spear, whereupon Coragus tried to draw his sword from its scabbard, only to have Dioxippus grab the Macedonian's sword-arm with his left hand while with his right he threw Coragus off-balance and footswept him to the ground. The heavily-armored Coragus fell to the earth, helpless in his battle-dress, at which point Dioxippus completed his victory by placing his foot on his antagonist's neck. Unfortunately, this marvelous example of pankration's effectiveness as a combative system had a bad end. Alexander was so angry at the thought that Dioxippus had defeated one of his own warriors that he had the champion fighter framed for theft and forced to commit suicide as punishment." Alexander adopted Pankration because of this and trained his soldiers in it. Some theories claim that when he conquered east, pankration influenced the area and planted the seeds of modern asian fighting arts. So like I said earlier, I think what succeeds in sport fighting can have a good chance of succeeding in "real life situations". Because, if removing eye-gouging, biting and strikes to the throat neuters a martial art, I'm not too impressed with it in the first place as an effective combat system. Here is a link to a realmedia or realplayer file that is the first 10 or so fights Royce Gracie (a BJJ master) fought in during the early Ultimate Fighting Championships during the time frame when the rules were: no biting, no eye-gouging. You cannot play his wins off as being the work of a single great fighter instead of a good system, Royce is small fish compared to the other BJJ practitioners in the world and BJJ continues to hold a good record in Mixed-Martial Arts fighting.
  13. Martial Arts

    I don't think you are a martial artist, though you certainly are MARTIAL and very successful at doing so. I would not call a soldier a martial artist for the same reason I would not call a writer or author to be a manufacturer of typewriters. They certainly do USE martial arts effectively as a means to an end, but that does not make them martial-ARTISTS. A soldier learns a martial art to win battles, a civilian to preserve the integrity of their loved ones’ lives (including their own), a police officer learns martial arts to ensure the liberty of those he protects; a Martial-Artist learns martial arts to learn martial arts: A Martial-Artist is the fountainhead of knowledge pertaining to the science of man-to-man combat; a scientist of fighting. A Martial-Artist dedicates his life to the study of a martial art as an end in itself, for the sheer joy and enlightenment of mastery of a martial art; and, if he desires so, to pass the knowledge down to new students, who inspired by their masters, will do the same in turn. Martial-Arts do not exist because of police officers, soldiers and civilians-they are but the grateful recipients of the knowledge-martial arts exist because of Martial-Artists; they are periodic links in a long flowing chain of knowledge
  14. Martial Arts

    "Krav Maga is the ultimate martial art: modern, scientific, and brutally effective. It's the application of Objectivist morality to the realm of personal self-defense: your own life is the ultimate value, and the goal is to save it at all costs. No rules, no katas, no spiritual hogwash - just simple, effective moves." There are other MAs that one could say the same thing about. I think it was in Mastering JuJitsu by Renzo Gracie and John Donaher there was a quote in there that was praising BJJ because "dubious metaphysical theories" are not inherent or part of the martial art. It is just a MA, end of story. Here are the principles, our reasoning behind the principles, and the techniques developed from them....but no Chakras, Chi, energy fields, gods, whatever (coincidentally an Oist friend of mine claimed they had to bow to sword-deities before starting their Kendo class! I don't know if this is common practice or not) Though BJJ may be a grappling art, chiefly on the ground, we are taught to use elbows for strikes in self-defense situations, so we are taught not to have rules applied to us in self-defense. Rather, we are taught to be able to rationally make decisions on how to end the fight properly within the context of what is happening. And once again, I think you could argue that many if not most MA could be based on Oist morality: "Jiu-jitsu was developed as a self-defense art--not as an attacking method. the main emphasis of the art's structure is to protect and preserve the student's physical integrity. Jiu-Jitsu is a defensive art in nature." I am not trying to take anything away from KM though, because as I have said, if the IDF support something it get's my thumbs up
  15. Martial Arts

    *laughs* I literally just got back from doing some Judo and BJJ so I'm fired up, let's discuss Of course I expect people to have values it is rather important to one's life. Yes I expected individuals to defend and support their martial art, but that isn’t necessarily the same as arguing that someone else’s is inferior. When I stated that disclaimer, I did not mean I thought judging value of martial arts to be a waste of time, I meant arguing about who’s martial art is superior or inferior. When I hear "the ultimate_______" within the context of the statement I think "the ______ to end all _______". For example: Objectivism is the ultimate philosophy. It is the philosophy to end all philosophies. You can't out-do, modify, improve or best the philosophy's principles, it is the ultimate, period. However, I don’t think martial arts can be treated the same way, I’ll explain further down. And I don't think MA (let's abbreviate martial arts to this) can be treated BROADLY in the same manner; rather, I agree with you, it is within a field of common value choices that a superior one diverges from the rest. The best way I could think to explain it would be through an analogy: Let's say MA=an automobile. You just can't claim that a certain new car you developed is the ultimate car and the car to end all cars. Sure, it may have a 400hp engine, seats 4 comfortably and gets 30mpg, but Bob over at his company could come out with the same car, but give it a better cup-holder, and now we would have to call it the ultimate car, the car to end all cars. But then I would just come up with one with a better cup-holder AND prettier tires and now I have the ultimate car, the car to end all......ad nauseam. Nor can we just on general claim one vehicle to be superior to another. For example, you can't say a Lexus sports car is superior to a Ford work truck because they are in different classes. A rancher in Montana has different values he looks for in a vehicle than a rich business-man in New York City; that Lexus would be worth virtually nothing to the rancher and the same goes the other way around. But yes, we clearly can have superior cars within classes corresponding to what people buy them for: the best work truck amongst other work trucks, so on. If we didn't discern between these things you could argue that Kendo was superior to all of the unarmed combat fighting styles because it would be almost impossible for a Jeet Kun Do or BJJ practitioner to beat someone carrying a Kitana. But then you could say a MA involving firearms was better than that, then you could say…. Nor can we claim that so and so has developed the ultimate martial art, because all one has to do is modify it for the better and now we have a new and better martial art(give it a better cup-holder). But yes, I do think there are martial arts that are clearly superior within a class based on needs and values: unarmed fighting, knife-fighting, disarming someone carrying firearms, restraining without injury, killing as quickly as possible…I’m just tossing things in the air but the point should be clear. So yes, your art can be superior within a class, but its superiority is not necessarily permanent. A MA is a method and strategy of self-defense and fighting, but there is no method, technique or strategy to end all strategies. Someone can always eventually have the ambition to refine the knowledge and come up with a better technique, strategy, method, or martial art in general. I’ll use an example from BJJ: you will never find “the golden move” or “ultimate technique”. Sure, your particular form of the leg-triangle choke may currently be unbeatable, but I bet there is some random master down in Rio de Janeiro that is formulating and refining a counter to that move. That is how a MA grows, and on a larger scale I think, how all MA on earth have and will continue to develop, strengthen and be born: it’s a beautiful process
  16. Martial Arts

    Let's hold on here a moment before everyone wastes their time in pointless arguments about whether or not KM is the ultimate martial art. Why don't we first define WHAT exactly an "Ultimate Martial Art" is when you say that. I don't think you can compare philosophy and martial arts on this issue, saying since there is an ultimate philosophy, there is an ultimate martial art. Though I do think there are similarities, you can change the applications and extensions of a martial art, but you can't change its principles without calling it a different martial art: for example, Helio Gracie took traditional jiu-jitsu, changed it, now it is called Brazilian jiu-jitsu. You can't say that bjj is modified Japanese jiu-jitsu just like you can't say Objectivism is modified __________ (fill in whatever you want, point should be same). So let's specify exactly what we mean when we declare "ultimate martial art"(erandror already briefly has, I am speaking to anyone else that jumps into this), THEN let's argue on whether or not there can be an ultimate martial art. I would be disappointed to see this thread dissolve into pointless and mind-numbing debate after I made this opening statement: "*DISLAIMER*: Let's keep this discussion steered away from arguing about superiority/inferiority of particular martial-arts, not because I'm unwilling to judge the value of one but simply because I have found it to be a waste of time"
  17. Martial Arts

    Oh, I didn't want to brag, but, in BJJ, they won't let you graduate from Orange Belt until you can do a hand-stand with a green troll mounted on your feet while simultaneously stacking asymmetrically shaped rocks and making a droid hover around you; well--if you are in a semi-respectable academy that is. "A great grappler become you will! hrprmmmahrr!"
  18. Martial Arts

    Yeah, Katas annoyed me, fortunately I encounter none in BJJ. I don’t think there are any in the other grappling as well: Judo, Greco-Roman Wrestling, Sambo, though I am not 100% sure about Aikido. I don’t blame you for opting for dancing, I think we would agree when I say women look much prettier than sweaty men in kimonos. Just because a martial art is a "sporting martial art" does not mean that it is not a combat martial art; the two are not mutually exclusive. Jigoro Kano, the founder of Judo, (I'm pretty sure he was the one that did this, someone correct me if wrong) found that by removing all of the dangerous moves of an art (eye-gouging, strikes to the throat, strikes to the groin, etc.) and leaving the "gentle" or "safe" moves one could then practice the said martial-art in a much more live and full-speed manner. Because of this, sport-competition can be created from the art. (Unfortunately sometimes making people mentally categorize the said art as more of a sport than a combat art, for example, Judo, when this is anything but the truth. Just observe the success of Remco Pardoel in the early Ultimate Fighting Championships when the only rules were that of ancient Greek Pankration: no eye gouging, no biting, other than that anything goes. I don't see how anyone could say this does not at least partially reflect a live-combat setting.) The result: students practicing a martial art made of "safe" moves develop devastating and deadly ability because they can practice and spar full speed day in-day out with very little fear of injury, resulting in a huge amount of experience that can both be gained rapidly and be applied successfully in a combat setting. This is why I particularly like BJJ. I will spar for literally hours straight with strong aggressive people without being hurt; when my opponent has successfully applied a joint-lock or choke all I have to do is submit by tapping-out and we stop immediately: no harm done. I'm not saying this though trying to discredit Krav Maga, it obviously works and is very effective or else the Israel Defense Force would not use it. I'm just wanting to make sure that no one gets the idea that a martial art cannot both be a sport art and a combat art. From reading some of Phil's material on Shorthand Emptyhand and on Bullshido's website I think he will disagree with me though. Random question about fencing because I know nothing about it : when you train do you use wooden swords as would be done in Kendo where you just strike each other or do you use the rapiers with the little sensor on the end that buzzes when a hit is landed, or is this just done in competition? Oh, mcvideo, if you are going to be that serious about fencing you need to get one of those canes when you get older that have a sword attached to the handle sheathed hidden-like within the shaft (but I think they are illegal ) If someone tried to mug you in the alley when you are an old man it would look exactly like when we got to see Yoda dish out punishment in Episode 2 for the first time…well, minus being a two foot tall green troll-thing with telekinesis (but the field of plastic surgery is making amazing advances).
  19. Martial Arts

    Wow, I don't have a lot to add Mr.Laughlin, you made a good list there. I only have one thing to say: patience, which ties in neatly with Mr.Laughlin’s statement: “8. Be prepared to feel a little foolish at first. You will need to learn simple things like how to wear the uniform and how to tie a knot in your white belt.” *laughs* here I am stressing patience and I've only been studying BJJ for a year and a half, that should be an indicator of its critical importance if I had to learn it so quickly! But I guess, even more importantly: have fun! Martial-Arts should be fun and exciting, if after an appreciable duration time of patiently giving the art a try and you are still not having fun, then something is more than likely wrong. If it isn’t fun it will be very difficult to find the motivation to learn and continue the art over a long period of time, so personal enjoyment is integral(this is why I particularly like BJJ; most academies are typically laid back atmospheres devoid of meaningless formalities where knowledge is dispensed in an Aristotelian manner). Best wishes Oh, on a random note Mr.Laughlin, you don't have to call me "Mr.Jordan" because both that I'm far too young and ignorant to have earned the rank of "Mr." and because my last name is not Jordan (Jordan is in fact my first name, Carlos E. Jordan is a made up name)
  20. How Fast is Gravity

    Wow sorry, that was a brain fart, I was thinking purely in terms of gravity as being a graviton that travels through objects and mediums*laughs*; Gravity does not have a refractive index because its medium is space itself, whereas a graviton would be a quantized packet of propagating spatial distortion: right? I had read an argument for the speed of gravity being very near or equal to c because otherwise "fastball"-cosmic rays should outrun the force of gravity and emit Cherenkov gravitational-radiation. So I guess what I'm asking is whether or not it is actually possible for an object to emit Cherenkov gravitational radiation or if such an idea is a theoretical flight of fancy. If it is possible is it not further proof that the speed of gravity is c itself as is predicted by General Relativity?
  21. Martial Arts

    Carrie, based on your statement "What different kinds of "defense arts" are out there, and what do they focus most on? I think I would like something that's more for the health of the body/defense as opposed to all out fight club style.", I would strongly recommend that you investigate Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, it is a refinement of traditional japanese jiu-jitsu (or jujitsu) that occured in (surprise!) Brazil. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is a martial art dedicated to grappling (joint-locks, chokes), specifically on the ground. Jiu-Jitsu itself means (Correct me wherever you want Mr.Laughlin ) "gentle way", it is an art that teaches an individual how to rationally defend against an opponent's attack using his aggression against himself. My favorite quote describing Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu/ju-jitsu so far would have to be by Jose Fraguas in "The Nature of the Art-Part 2" from Grappling magazine: "Jiu-jitsu was developed as a self-defense art--not as an attacking method. the main emphasis of the art's structure is to protect and preserve the student's physical integrity. Jiu-Jitsu is a defensive art in nature." Plus, based on the grappling nature of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with respect to the guard position (http://bjj.org/techniques/intheguard/guardpass1/guard1.jpg), BJJ would be an excellent art for rape defense for women. A BJJ practitioner from this bottom position can execute a large variety of joint-locks and chokes that can seriously disable the strongest of aggressors (If I can get them to work on someone 70lbs heavier, you can do similar things as well ) One of the things that I love about BJJ is that an individual can finish a fight without ever injuring his opponent while remaining in complete control because of the very nature of grappling. A BJJ practitioner has such dominating and mind-full control on the ground that he can decide rationally what is the best way to finish the fight within the context of the specific situation. The only serious criticism I can find against BJJ is that it is no good for defending against multiple attackers; I agree with this only in part. In such a case all one would have to do is use the standing self-defense techniques that have been learned in class (you usually cover self-defense a good bit) while perhaps employing some stand-up striking skills that can be picked up at many places (Jeet Kune Do, kickboxing, etc). But this is an entirely different discussion Ideally, assuming we have all the time in the world to study martial-arts, one would want to be well rounded; perhaps study a purely grappling art in depth and a purely striking art in depth, then integrate the two to create a beautiful fighting system. To see such a thing in action, I direct you to watch the Pride Fighting Championships (http://www.pridefc.com/pride2004/12_about.htm) which is without a doubt my favorite sport. Mr. Laughlin, I like your answer regarding “art/artisan” and will continue to think about it; frankly I need to read the Romantic Manifesto. A quote I like similar to this is by BJJ master Jean Jacque Machado-“anybody can fight, but not everybody is an artist” Adriaticfish, what was your motivation to pursue Jeet Kune Do, not everyone wakes up in the morning and decides “I’m going to learn Jeet Kune Do” all of a sudden . Was it the art’s rejection of harmful tradition and dogmatism within martial-arts that attracted you, or the “study everything keep what works” philosophy? Please elaborate, I am curious. Whooh, this was far too long-winded for my style, you all have a good night.
  22. How Fast is Gravity

    Reading Nodrog's question reminded me of one I had: I had read that if a high energy particle were to enter a medium where its velocity was greater than that at which gravity propogates through that medium then the particle would lose energy and decelerate via emission of Cherenkov gravitational-radiation. Is this claim credible? And I also just noticed that in the smilie listing the ninja smilie can also be produced by typing ph34r, the leet-speak form of fear; this was the last place I would expect outbursts of leet from..... for shame *shakes head then laughs*
  23. Inspirational Moments in Sports

    Currently it would have to be when Kazushi Sakuraba defeated Renzo Gracie in Pride-10-Return of the Warriors, Pride Fighting Championship. That battle conclusively demonstrated that at that time Kazushi Sakuraba was the greatest fighter alive on the planet. He won through his usual mix of cunning strategy and skillful deception. My potential favorite (haven’t seen the whole fight yet) however is when Royce Gracie beat the colossal Dan Severn in the Ultimate Fighting Championship after being pummeled by the much larger opponent for 15 minutes straight. A close second (also potential) would have to be when Kazushi Sakuraba defeated Royce Gracie in a match that clocked in at around an hour and a half; the longest no-holds-barred fight of the modern era. (the longest one period was a three hour match between Helio Gracie and a friend he had a “falling-out” with, the match ended when Helio passed out from exhaustion: it would have been great to watch just to admire the intense inner-strength that man possessed) For anyone seeking a beautiful and exciting individual sport to appreciate I strongly recommend watching the Pride Fighting Championships, Pride FC for short, the premiere mixed martial-arts competition in the world. And no, this is not “wrasslin”
  24. Futurama (1999)

    I think there are so many different ways one could interpret that scene based on our loose knowledge of what Matt Groening might have meant that it probably isn't worth thinking about too much. It certainly is easy to think "It was flushed down with porno, people flush down the toilet what they despise so here it all is" But then think back to the first episode where Fry learns that everyone has a job attached to them at birth via a job-implantation chip based on what you are best at, not what you want to do with your life; all to the tune of their slogan "You gotta do what you gotta do" with a picture of a frowning construction worker giving a thumbs-up (and if you refuse to do your assigned job you are fired---into the sun!) Maybe we shouldn't be surprised to find an Ayn Rand work in the sewer of such a society and we shouldn't take offense over it. Given Futurama's sense of humor, I personally find it hard to believe he (Groening) was personally attacking Ayn Rand. And to slant into my personal view of Futurama; I love the show. It always seems to carry a certain comic benevolence to it that I enjoy. Even when the story ends in an unfortunate manner for one of the characters the show still carries a warm, light-hearted mood to it. I find this completely to the contrary of shows like Family Guy or The Simpsons.