Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Lili's epic thoughts - I've had another one

Back in 2007 I had an insight into what I believe is the genetic process that gives rise to at least one type of autism, when I noticed a pattern and also learned of the biological concept that unites all of the items in that pattern. I'm not going to be any more specific about my insight than this, because I do not want the world of science to understand what causes autism, because I do not wish for a "cure" or prevention to be discovered, so I am forced to keep my insights to myself.

I've recently had another insight which I think might be an important clue about the origin of another brand of autism, after considering an interesting incidental finding discovered during the process of the medical investigation of an autistic person, and then considering that observation along-side information that I know about an inborn abnormality of a famous autistic person which I recall from reading a biography. The thing that really excites me about this latest insight is that it involves a system of the body that to my knowledge has never before been linked to autism in any way, which is saying something, because just about every system in the human body has been the subject of some quack theory about what causes autism. What can I say? I can say nothing more, because this is a piece of knowledge that could be used in the worst way. Sorry.

Lili Marlene discovers the cause of autism in between bringing the laundry in off the line and washing some dishes (2007)

Lili's unpleasant thought for the day

Was The Girl Who Played With Fire once the little girl who played with poo?

Monday, March 28, 2011

Assange the biography and Assange the movie .....

This morning Australian journalist Andrew Fowler was interviewed on Radio National about his new book titled The Most Dangerous Man in the World which is about Julian Assange. Apparently it isn't at all clear how many offspring the WikiLeaks founder has. An interesting life, for sure. Apparently there are are plans to make a feature film based on this book.

Julian Assange: the most dangerous man in the world.
Fran Kelly interviewing Andrew Fowler


ABC Radio National 810am

29 March 2011

Book page at Pan Macmillan Australia:,%20Andrew

Lili's thought for the next day

Women in politics - an idea that doesn't look too flash tonight!

Lili's thought for the day

For the love of God, Asperger is an Austrian surname! Therefore ....... the "g" sound in it is a hard "g", isn't it? It's not a f***ing French name, it's an Austrian name, Austrian, no not Australian, Austrian (why do I bother?).

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Manne essay on Assange free to read and another WikiLeaks doco coming up on the box

Aussie Assangophiles and leak-watchers take note: the "film" WikiLeaks: war, lies and videotape will be broadcast this Wednesday evening, March 30th 2011, at 8.30pm on ABC2 on Australian television.

This weekend I've been reading Robert Manne's essay about Julian Assange in the latest Monthly, which was apparently described by Assange himself on Twitter as the best article about him, which then caused a wave of demand that crashed the website of the Australian The Monthly magazine. The essay can be read (it appears in full with comments) at the website of The Monthly, including revisions made "in light of a lengthy email exchange initiated by Julian Assange".

The cypherpunk revolutionary: Robert Manne on Julian Assange.

by Robert Manne
Monthly. March 2011. p.16-35.

Behind the Scenes of Gimme Love

Lili's other thought for the day

When it comes to relationships, I'm a bit of an extremophile.

Lili's thought of the day

Nuclear power - f*** that shit!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Lili's thought for the day

How many times have I been involved with a conversation that goes along these lines; "I think my life-long history of personal peculiarities might have been caused by being abused as a child, but I don't actually remember any such thing happening."? Too many times!

Friday, March 18, 2011

What kinda gal is Lady Gaga?

We already know that the amazing and highly creative "fame monster" Lady Gaga is a synaesthete, based on her comment in an interview about the way she experiences one of her songs as having a colour. I was recently taking a look at the February 2011 story about Lady Gaga from the US 60 Minutes TV show, and it looks like she was a bit of a social misfit and a victim of bullying during her high school days. She doesn't exactly blend into the crowd these days either. For sure she is an unusual lady. You might like to take a look at what is said at around 9.55 minutes into the video of the 60 Minutes story.

Lady Gaga & The Art of Fame
interviewer Anderson Cooper
60 Minutes (US)
February 13, 2011;contentBody

This is the YouTube video in which Lady Gaga mentioned her coloured music at around 2.20 minutes into the clip during an interview in Singapore.

Lili's list of labels

Do you like my list of labels, which can be found at the right of my blog a little way down? There are a whole bunch of Dans and Dicks in my list. There's nothing in this world that I love more than a great big long list.

Lili's thought of the day

What is a Hindu doing working in a McDonalds?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Please consider - a disability rights petition and ASAN have a petition that requires your timely attention. In a last-minute divulgence of information the CDC have proposed a new category of medical diagnosis that is apparently designed to facilitate the use of restraints and seclusion on autistic children and adults. The new proposed category is "wandering" behaviour, which seems absurd to me as a medical diagnosis.

The idea of wandering behaviour being categorized as a mental illness brings to mind a patently absurd and politically-motivated category of mental illness that was applied to black slaves in the 1850s in the United States. The name of this pseudoscientific diagnosis was "drapetomania" and it caused black slaves to desire to flee from captivity. No, truly, I am not making this up.

If you care about disability rights, you should read and consider this petition and the associated letter. If you care about the proper practice of science and medicine and psychiatry and you care about diagnostic categories having a proper basis in scientific evidence, you should read and consider this petition and the associated letter. This is an urgent matter with a definite deadline for action. Please take a look now.

Tell the CDC "No" on Abuse-Enabling "Wandering" Code!

Wikipedia contributors (accessed 2011) Drapetomania. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Kevin Rudd issued denial this morning

Australia's Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd has issued a denial regarding the accusations in Julian Assange's question for Australia's PM Julia Gillard, broadcast on the Q & A TV program last night.

Full transcript of Julian Assange's question to the Prime Minister of Australia Julia Gillard on Australian TV tonight

The TV show is Q & A, broadcast on the evening of Monday March 14th 2011 in Australia on ABC television, Australia's government-funded TV station. Julian Assange is shown in a non-live, edited video from Norfolk UK, where he is under house arrest. Assange is shown in a shot of his upper body. Shortly before the showing of the video of Assange PM Gillard had been telling the audience that the Australian government has been looking after Julian Assange in just the same way that it looks after any Australian who has gotten into legal trouble overseas. PM Gillard has just returned from an arse-kissing tour of the United States in which she made a speech to the US Congress that made the US House Speaker John Boehner cry, (which isn't really that amazing at all).

Julian Assange -

"Prime Minister, you just got back from Washington, but what Australian citizens want to know, is which country do you represent? Do you represent Australians and will you fight for Australian interests? Because it's not the first time that you or a member of your cabinet has been into a US government building and exchanged information. In fact, we have intelligence that your government has been exchanging information with foreign powers about Australian citizens working for WikiLeaks."

The shot then changes to a closer shot of Assange's head and shoulders. This is a pre-recorded, edited piece of video.

"So Prime Minister, my question to you is this; when will you come clean about precisely what information you have supplied to foreign powers about Australian citizens working or affiliated with WikiLeaks? And if you cannot give a full and frank answer to that question, should perhaps the Australian people consider charging you with treason?"

Assange delivered his question in the style of a threatening evil genius from a James Bond movie (pretty much his usual style).

PM Julia Gillard -

I did not take a full transcript of her reply. She had a rather patronizing smile while listening to Assange's question, and stayed cheerful while addressing his question. She said:

"I honestly don't know what he is talking about."

She denied exchanging information about people at WikiLeaks. She admitted that "we" do sometimes exchange information with foreign powers in matters such as following up "transnational crimes". She also said:

"No one in the US raised with me Mr Assange, no one."

When she made this statement she did her characteristic exposed palms patting downward gesture, rather like the gesture that one might make to a dog or a toddler who was jumping up and getting out of control.

Some thoughts that come to my mind after viewing this are:

Assange possibly intended to add to the many minor controversies about Australia's high-profile Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd in the part of Assange's question about people nipping into US government buildings to leak information. Would this be a big deal if it were true? I guess it depends on the information.

What information might our government be receiving in return for leaking information to the yanks?

Is Assange issuing a threat to Gillard or Rudd or some other party?

Is WikiLeaks transforming from a whistleblowing organization into a blackmailing organization?

Link to Australian press story about Assange's question:

Q & A

Julian Assange asking a pointed question to PM of Australia on national TV

Julian Assange, appearing from home detention in the UK, just asked the Prime Minister of Australia Julia Gillard a question live on the political Australian TV show Q and A. I have not yet found a transcript of the question, but I recall it was a hint that she or her government had been giving information to the US about an Australian/Australians connected with WikiLeaks in an act of national disloyalty that he characterized as treason. This followed just after Gillard stated that her government was suporting Assange just the same as it would support any Australian citizen who had gotten into legal trouble overseas. What was Assange's question about?

Q and A

Friday, March 11, 2011

More work on famous synaesthetes list

I have just added a few bits and pieces to my famous synesthetes list, with a few details about Syd Barrett and Solomon Shereshevskii added, and the painter Paul Gauguin added to the list. Enjoy!

56 famous synaesthetes or possible synesthetes: a list with references.

Japan devastation - I can't believe my eyes

This afternoon my worries, and there are a few, suddenly looked quite modest, in comparison to the truly devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The local TV media say there is no tsunami danger to Australia, but there is still a warning in effect for many countries including Australia, Taiwan, Indonesia, PNG, New Zealand and (get this) Antarctica:

The tsunami is expected to hit Taiwan soon. It might be too dark to see it if it hits as it is getting dark in Taiwan now:

If you live anywhere near the Pacific Ocean, please stay informed and stay safe!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

That's What Jazz Is To Me by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds

I include this in my blog because there's nothing that I enjoy more than a piss-take. No pictures, sorry, it's only a B-side. Be warned, there is some bad language in the lyrics of this piece of music.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

At last - some much-needed brain scan research into a terrible disorder

At last! Neurotypical Disorder is being taken seriously. This devastating disorder which transforms people into sheeple has been the subject of a number of interesting, and frightening research studies. I thank my lucky stars that I have been fortunate enough to inherit a synaesthesia/AS genome that puts me at a much decreased risk for developing this mind-distorting mental impairment. Ufortunately the magazine article below is mostly behind a paywall.

Following the herd actually shifts your opinion
Ferris Jabr
New ScientistMarch 4th 2011

I've found another story about a research study that is old (from 2009) but is a nice complement to the above story. It outlines a study of social conformity that used brain scan technology. The study was apparently published in the science journal Neuron.

Why so many minds think alike.
Elizabeth Landau
January 15th 2009

Lili's thought for the day

When your local supermarket empties out half of the fruit and veg retail area and fills it back up with cheap easter eggs and packets of marshmallow things covered in "choc", you know you are living in a f***ed up, buggered up world.

Monday, March 07, 2011

21st century neurosexism limiting choices for children on International Women's Day

Today is apparently International Women's Day. I thought such events were all about the idea of improving the lot of women and girls by getting rid of gender inequality and stopping gender-based discrimination. Back in the olden days when I was young, feminism was all about changing the world so that no one misses out or loses out simply because of their gender. But these days, the types of people that I would have expected to be anti-sexism, people like women, teachers and middle-class authority figures, seem to be positively promoting discrimination based on sex. These days the latest fad is to believe that females have a female type brain, and males have male type brains, and this biological difference means the sexes behave differently, have different abilities and deficits, and desire different things from life. Boys want to go campin' and fishin' in the wild with hairy fatherly role models. Girls would prefer to stay in the city and paint their nails at sleepovers with girlfriends. We have academics and pop psychology book writers such as Prof. Simon Baron-Cohen to thank for popularizing these ideas.

Never mind that in our midst we all see many people who don't or can't or won't fit the stereotypes. Tomboys, effeminate lads, same-sex attracted people, cross-dressers, nerdy ladies who love to write code, nurturing men who love to care and cook. I guess we can all go to hell in today's intellectual climate. The only type of diversity that we officially celebrate these days is ethnic diversity. So I guess I shouldn't be surprised that today the government high school that our child attends is holding an incursion that is promoted as a bit of fun, a visit from a fashion designer. This school activity is only for female students. This is certainly not the first single-sex school activity held at a co-ed high school that I have heard of. Such discrimination is apparently not at all frowned upon these days. Our politically-aware child asked me Am I allowed to say "sexism"? Well, if you can't say "sexism" on International Women's Day, then when can you say it?

Lili's third thought of the day

There is only one thing worse than Ramachandran releasing a new book about neuropsychology, and that's Baron-Cohen releasing a new book about empathy.

Lili's second thought of the day

I have met lots of crazy people simply by virtue of the fact that I've met most of my father's friends.

Lili's thought for the day

When natural bushland is cleared and wild animals lose their home to make way for a gigantic pet supply store, you know you are living in a f***ed up world with crazy values.

The f***tards have been busy over at the Wikipedia

These days the Wikpedia is not only out of date, neglected and riddled with important omissions, in some ways it downright bizarre. Anyone who has a fair knowledge of neuropsychology or synaesthesia or the science of memory will know about the famous book The mind of a mnemonist: a little book about a vast memory by the Russian neuropsychologist Alexander Luria (a name which can be spelt in many different ways). This book is famous as a detailed decription of Luria's investigation of "S", who was a case of a very extraordinary memory and was studied by Luria over a span of many years. Solomon Shereshevskii was the real name of "S". His name is also spelt in many different ways, but the most contemporary spelling seems to be the one I use here. Shereshevskii was amazing because he arguably had the greatest memory ever described by science. Luria gave up trying to find the limits of the type of memory skill that Shereshevskii excelled at. Shereshevskii was also notable as one of the first synaesthetes to have their synesthesia described in detail by a researcher. It goes without saying that it is interesting that such an amazing memory was a property of a brain that was also a synaesthete brain. So it follows that this book that described it all is a pretty big deal. Guess what? It appears that this book no longer had any Wikipedia page. Just not important enough I guess. But a book that does still have a Wikipedia page is a fictional book (Funes the memorious by Borges) that was thought to have been inspired by Luria's book The mind of a mnemonist which isn't important enough to have a Wikipedia page. So at the Wikipedia you can find out about the fictional secondary version, but not about the actual factual original account. How mad is that?

I guess I should be grateful that poor old Sol still has a Wikipedia page, but weird things appear to have happened there too. His surname is given in his article title spelt in away that I wouldn't choose, but is spelt differently throughout the article. Strangely, the book that made Shereshevskii famous, The mind of a mnemonist, is not mentioned anywhere in Shereshevskii's Wikipedia article or in the references, it is only mentioned in the notes. The references list a Russian version of the book and "An amateur English translation" of the book. It looks as though someone is trying to hide the fact that this important book exists at all, or to hinder access to it. Very strange. It would be the easiest thing in the world to link to the book where it can be read at Scribd, but they don't. Bizarre.

The mind of a mnemonist by A. R. Luria

A referenced list of 175 famous or important people diagnosed with an autism spectrum condition or subject of published speculation about whether they are or were on the autistic spectrum

56 famous synaesthetes or possible synesthetes: a list with references.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

My mirror neurons aren't busted, but I think your stupid theory might be

"The broken mirror hypothesis has so many holes in it and is nowhere close to providing an explanation of autism".

- lecturer in psychology Antonia Hamilton, quoted in this article:

'Broken mirror' concept of autism challenged.
Moheb Costandi
Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative
3 March 2011

Thursday, March 03, 2011

The constant hum of chattering about Julian and WikiLeaks

The untold story of Julian Assange.
Robert Manne interviewed about Assange and WikiLeaks by Phillip Adams
Late Night Live. ABC Radio National 810am
March 2nd 2011

Julian Assange: the unknown story.

Robert Manne
The Monthly. March 2011.

Inside the brain of WikiLeak's Julian Assange.
Robert Manne
The Australian. March 5th 2011
[extract from Manne's article in The Monthly]

Host: Jenny Brockie
Insight. SBS TV
March 1st 2011

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Lili's thought for the day

Turning the business of government into an aggressive team sport is such a typically human thing to do. This is one more reason why I don't like humans.

If you want to pick up someone who isn't rubbish, pick up some rubbish

No one ever asks for my advice, or even listens to it, but that doesn't mean I know nothing. I've often thought that a single person who is hoping to meet someone nice should think carefully about where they look for a suitable partner. Is a pub or a nightclub a good place to look for love? I don't think so, those places are full of trashy types. How about looking for love online? Seasoned psychopaths hunt for victims online, forget that!

You don't need to be a genius to figure out that if one wishes to meet a nice person, the smart strategy would be to hang out where nice people would hang out. Volunteer work is a nice thing to do. Nice people volunteer. So do some volunteer work, and you might meet someone nice! I've found that an especially worthwhile type of person turns up to events that involve volunteer or lowly-paid hands-on work to clean up or improve the natural environment. Intelligent people appreciate natural bushland and wild places, and altruists do volunteering. People who turn up to hands-on type work voluntarily are either hard-working or fit or genuinely trying to get fit. They sound like a tip-top bunch of humans, don't they? This Sunday March 6th 2011 is Clean Up Australia Day. You will need to bring your own gardening gloves, hat, water and sunscreen. I hope you get lucky.