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The coming year and beyond will most likely see bloodshed across the continent as a battle between cultures turns violent.
The prediction of an impending religious war has been made by numerous experts, from the Dalai Lama to the western world's most influential think tanks.
Warnings of religious warfare across the secular continent have come as early as 2006 – years before the migration crisis even began.
American think-tank, the Washington Institute, published a shocking report stating a religious war is looming.
It said: "The Crusades began with a rumour of defilement. In 1095, Pope Urban II denounced the Muslims as 'a race utterly alienated from God'.
"This is exactly how Islam's leaders are demonising the West in the 21st."
It came after millions of Muslims took part in angry protests when a Danish publisher printed cartoons of the Islamic prophet Muhammed.
It argued that the at some point "the crusade" will begin, but this time it "would be a Muslim one" as "its advance scouts are already at work in Europe".
Other think tanks, including European and US-based ones, have also discussed growing Muslim populations in Europe in relation to religious intolerance.
But some of the most explosive warnings have come from prominent religious leaders.
Just days ago, a high-profile Italian archbishop warned that his country and the rest of Europe will "soon be Muslim".
Monsignor Carlo Liberati, the Archbishop Emeritus of Pompeii, apocalyptically predicted the mass displacement of Christian heritage Europeans due to declining birth rates and less public engagement with the church.
Speaking to Catholic journal La Fede Quotidiana, he said: "Parishes are the only thing still standing. We need a true Christian life. All this paves the way to Islam. In addition to this, they have children and we do not. We are in full decline.
"In 10 years we will all be Muslims because of our stupidity."
In May, the Dalai Lama – himself a refugee and known for his charitable and humanitarian views – told a German news outlet that there are "too many" refugees in Europe.
The spiritual leader said the continent and Germany "cannot become an Arab country", adding refugees should only be "admitted temporarily".
And a year ago, Moscow's chief Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt wrote in the Telegraph that "we must realise that we have now entered a religious war".
Their comments came as Europe was hit by the effects of a migration crisis that is on a scale never seen before.
In 2015 alone, well over a million economic migrants and refugees flooded into the continent from countries such as Syria, Afghanistan, Eritrea and Somalia.
Critics of the open-door policy have repeatedly lashed out at European governments, arguing the scale of the crisis have stoked religious and racial tensions.
Across Europe, right-wing parties – particularly those with unfavourable views of Islam – have seen their popularity grow.
In France, the far-right Front National has seen its support triple in five years.
And in Germany, which bore the brunt of refugee arrivals, polls suggest those intending to vote for the Alternative for Germany (AfD) are at their highest levels ever.
In May 2015, the political party declared in its very own manifesto that "Islam is not part of Germany".
Scientists believe it may be possible in the future for human brains to survive death in robotic bodies. but would we want to?
I recently had the unusual experience of seeing three renowned scientists discuss whether it’s possible to remove a human brain from a body, put it in a tank, and give it a robotic body. This wasn’t some bizarre late-night bar discussion: The conversation was a serious talk conducted on stage at a conference at New York’s Lincoln Center. The University of Southern California’s Theodore Berger, Duke University’s Mikhail Lebedev, and Alexander Kaplan of Moscow University, all believe it’s possible for the brain to survive body-death inside a cybernetic shell.
In their panel at the Global Future 2045 conference, the trio discussed a future that sounds like a combination of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, the recent mouse inception, and Krang, the brain-in-a-box villain of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The talk, which took place in a mixture of Russian and English, focused on making it possible in our lifetime to conduct brain transplants, harvesting human parts from the body for cybernetic integration, and making self-aware brains comfortable in their new robot homes. It was just another Saturday afternoon, in other words.
Notably absent from the conversation was what the quality of life would be for human brains harvested into robotic bodies. Although all three researchers come from impeccable neurology backgrounds, the talk centered on mostly whether it would be possible to make the technology work. Whether it would be wise, or what the experience would be like for both patients and loved ones, wasn’t discussed as much.
The three researchers believe brain transplants are possible because the human brain is the last organ in the body to cease function after death. Because the death process includes a short window where the brain functions without support from other organs, Berger, Kaplan, and Lebedev all believe there is precedent to have the human brain functioning indefinitely in a non-human carrier–as long as the appropriate support system is there for the brain. They also stress the fact that nerve cells age slowly compared to other organs.
This brain-in-a-robot would be supported by biological blood substitutes (with “the necessary hormonal-biochemical and energetic substrate”), multi-channel brain-computer interfaces with two-way information exchange, neural prostheses, artificially regrown human organs, and other biotech tools that we can’t even imagine. Because there is no precedent for the human brain surviving and functioning outside of a human body, degrees of consciousness, intelligence, comprehension, and a million other existential quandaries that would or wouldn’t exist in a robo-brain simply aren’t evaluated. The data points aren’t there for us to understand, even if it’s possible to transplant a human brain into a robot, what it’s like to be a human brain transplanted into a robot.
There are even interim holding facilities where living human brains could hypothetically be stored before transplantation.
While their roundtable discussion admittedly sounded like a master’s exercise in strange science, the kicker is that all three are engaged in preliminary efforts to make this happen. Last year, at the resolutely mainstream MIT Media Lab, I saw Dr. Berger speak about hacking the memories of rats. Berger’s lab at USC is actively working on prosthetic brain implants that both falsify memories and stimulate brain function in damaged neurons. The lab’s work recently received media attention when it successfully generated new memories in a rat that had its hippocampus chemically disabled. In literature, Berger emphasizes his technology’s potential for treating Alzheimer’s and dementia through the possibility of “building spare parts for the brain;” on-stage in New York, he said it could also lead in the future to full-on brain transplants.
This would work in tandem with Kaplan’s and Lebedev’s specialties. The two Russian scientists research brain-computer interfaces (BCIs)–plug-in interfaces which meld the human brain and nervous system to computer operating systems. While BCIs are most commonly found in toys that read brainwaves to detect stress or concentration, they have revolutionary potential to change the lives of stroke victims and the disabled.
When combined, brain prosthetics and brain-computer interfaces could lead to brain transplants decades from now. Would you want to spend decades or even a century living inside a robotic body at the mercy of a software interface to navigate the world? We’re just beginning to grasp the ethical, philosophical, and scientific implications. But with the right amount of funding, research, and cooperation, it’s entirely possible.
Mucuna pruriens (L.) DC. Syn. M. prurita Hook. (Papiliona-ceae) is used in male impotency, as aphrodisiac, in sexual debility, and as nervine tonic. It also possesses anti-parkinson property, possibly due to the presence of L-DOPA. In the present study, attempts were made to develop the suitable method(s) for extrac-tion of L-DOPA/other active components from the seeds using different solvents. The various extracts were also screened for their neuroprotective and antioxidant activities. In addition, TLC and HPLC fingerprinting of the extracts for amino acid compo-nents were also developed for preliminary and sophisticated analysis. The L-DOPA could be obtained in good yield on extrac-tion with EtOH-H2O mixture (1:1) using ascorbic acid as protec-tor. Interestingly, n-propanol extract, which contained negligible amount of L-DOPA, had shown significant neuroprotective activ-ity, suggesting that some components, other than L-DOPA, might also be responsible for anti-Parkinson property of seeds. The ex-tract (MW-0100) containing mainly amino acids and water-ethanol extract (1:1) (MWEL-1299) showed promising antioxi-dant activity (EC Sub(50) = 2.5 μg) against DPPH radicals. MWEL-1299 also exhibited encouraging results against 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium ion (MPP+) toxicity. The TLC fingerprinting may be used to authenticate the plant material in herbal industry.
Hey there, haters! Do you hate blacks, Jews, Catholics, Muslims, gays and anyone else who is not white, straight and Protestant? The Ku Klux Klan has a place for you! And ladies, you can wear the outfits too! What if you don’t rock a hood that well and feel claustrophobic wearing one, or feel that burning crosses on lawns is too much work? Try neo-Nazism. They almost have the same hate list as the KKK and the outfits are much more form fitting and Third Reich-ish. And if you’re blonde, well … blondes do have more fun, right?
Still not what you’re looking for? We might have something perfect for you, regardless of your skin color, ethnicity or religious affiliation — except if you’re a woman or gay man. If so, do not even think of joining … wait for it … The Return of Kings. Can you hear the TRUMPet fanfares? Can you see the bowing and scraping and boot kissing? Can you imagine the outfits?
The crowns, the Ermine-trimmed velvet robes, the bling! Oh yes, and the most important part: countless numbers of vicious, scheming women just waiting to be ravished!
The ROK categorically despises women, so you can still hate Catholics, Jews, Muslims, Protestants, agnostics and atheists, plus feminist women of any group! Particular vitriol is reserved for women with brains who relate to themselves as human beings and not merely as f#@k-holes, a charming term for women coined by the late bad-boy poet Charles Bukowski.
No, you are not reading The Onion right now. You’re reading “Consider This,” and I’m sorry to say that Return of Kings is not a parody or a joke or SNL skit. It is the creepy, dangerous, Trump-supporting and insane “neo-masculinity” group, the brainchild of a Hitler-esque man who is undoubtedly still living in his parents’ basement like most of his 13,000 followers. His name — which I’m reluctant to state since it’s helping to legitimize someone who shouldn’t have any visibility at all — is Daryush “Roosh” Valizadeh. And apparently the only thing that makes him superior is that he has a penis. That’s it.
If you’re a liberal or progressive or just an old-fashioned Republican who hasn’t ingested the Tea Party Kool-Aid, you understand that Mr. ROK hasn’t “arisen” in a vacuum. He is a reflection of the same gestalt that has some extremists salivating over Donald Trump and his ideas. The Return of Kings is a backlash against the next global revolution that must happen if we’re going to have a shot at a world that works for everyone, which involves the equality and full citizenship of half the planet, namely, women.
Valizadeh is a bitter nerd who has created a movement because no self-respecting woman wanted to sleep with him. Talk about vagina envy. Now he’s in the news because he called for a “Pro-Rape Meet-up” that was to have convened last week on Feb 6, in more than 40 cities at various locations around the world. The event was eventually canceled over fears stemming from not being able to guarantee the safety and privacy of attendees due to planned protests. I kid you not. Advocating fear is one thing, but experiencing it is quite another. Canceling the event is like a KKK member being afraid to march in case someone will speak out against them, then getting the leadership to call off the march rather than face the consequences of their words and actions.
In the early 1970s, Andrea Dworkin wrote a book called “Woman Hating” that is truly a must-read for any person, woman or man, who wants to get a grip on gender politics. Sadly, “Woman Hating” is still relevant. Many women have the words “man-hater” hurled at them for expressing ideas of justice and equality as they point out misogyny and discrimination. The real problem is rampant woman-hating, not man-hating, either expressed with glee and openness like the ROK idiots or through more subtle means like glass ceilings, double standards and vicious stereotypes that negatively impact both women and men.
It would be easy to ignore or dismiss ROK; doing so is folly. They are not monsters or aliens. They live next door to you. They are in the grocery store or at a coffee shop. They are around at probably the same rate as sociopaths, which by some estimates is about 5 percent of the population. There’s reading that can help shed some light: Gavin de Becker’s “The Gift of Fear,” will have you looking at scary people a lot differently, as will “The Sociopath Next Door” by Martha Stout. Not all sociopaths are serial killers or mass murderers. They simply thrive on making themselves feel superior by joining others in putting down the targets they hate and blame for almost everything.
Haters thrive on secrecy. Before the event was canceled, the ROK issued a secret “password phrase” for attendees, which undoubtedly changed once the word got out. The password created to help participants recognize each other was “Do you know where the nearest pet shop is?”
My password phrase? “Please get help now. The only place you are a king is in your head… and that’s a very bad neighborhood.”
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