Axver (axver) wrote,

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U2 and schoolwork.

We have a new Bullet The Blue Sky to add to the 'fired-up endings' list.

Outside it's America
Outside it's America
Where the fuck are you?
United Kingdom, fuck you!
Fuck you, [some name]!
Fuck you, [something]!
Zoonited nations! Zoonited nations! Zoonited nations!
We run! ... we run! ... into the arms ...

- 12 August 1993, London

(As a note of elaboration, I'm pretty sure this was during the height of the Bosnian crisis)

I was playing with setlist ideas and I've always found Streets to be a hard one to follow. Then I realised if Edge played the extended outro, it worked quite nicely in two combinations: Streets/All I Want Is You and Streets/MLK/With Or Without You. WOWY's another one I find hard to follow. Also, I've been listening to the live version of Dire Straits' Calling Elvis that can be found on the On The Night EP, and that would flow PERFECTLY into Even Better Than The Real Thing. I would LOVE to see it happen. It won't, but the two songs fit absolutely perfectly together, it's like they were made to be together like An Cat Dubh and Into The Heart were.

I'll cross stuff off this list as I go.

- Mountain glaciation
- Topographic maps and vertical exaggeration
- Arid areas and deserts
- Artesian basins
- Wind erosion and dunes

- Way too much vocabulary to list. Approximately fifty new words. Plus, I need to master some writing stuff and create answers to potential questions for the speaking exam.

Maths C
- Vector calculus - velocity and acceleration
- Newton's laws and constant acceleration
- Simple Harmonic Motion
- Projectile motion
- Standard integrals
- Integration by partial fractions
- Integration by parts
- Integration by substitution
- Volumes of revolution
- Finding matrix determinants
- Determinant properties
- Determinants, inverses, and solving matrix equations

Maths B
- Bernoulli trials
- How to create and test a null hypothesis
- The sign test
- Z-score test
- Standard integrals
- Approximate areas using left, right, and centre triangles
- Areas under curves
- Areas between curves
- Lorenz curves
- The unit circle
- Trigonometric equations
- The Pythagorean identity
(The last three I already know from grade ten Maths C)

- Open book, but a good understanding of ethics would help.

Modern History
- The women's movement in extreme detail

English: comparison and contrast of representations of the Holocaust in Schindler's List and Life Is Beautiful. Draft due: 04/06. Final copy: 15/06.

Modern History: Essay on the hypothesis 'That since WWII, American cultural imperialism has become a divisive and destructive influence on Australian culture.' Draft: 04/06. Final copy: 18?/06.

SOR: Technically, it was due Friday, but Johnno was away. I may enhance my assignment this weekend before I hand it in on Monday.

Geography: Major research assignment. Not due until next term but I want to have the bulk of it out of the way before holidays. This means diagrams and drawings. The writing part shouldn't be too hard.

Mathematics C: Extremely complex matrix assignment. Due: 18?/06.

It's pure joy, isn't it?

Self-Determined Rules - Practical or Anarchist?

For as long as history records, rules and laws have existed in society, and for a similar length of time, people have questioned their validity and the ability of others to make them. Such questioning occurs in the movie The Cider House Rules, clearly stated by the character Mister Rose, when he observes, “someone who don’t live here made those rules. Those rules ain’t for us. We are the ones who are supposed to make our own rules every single day. Ain’t that true, Homer?” This quote shall be examined in light of both ethics and situations in the movie, and then its truthfulness determined.

At the beginning of the movie, Homer lives in an orphanage named St Cloud’s with a substitute father of sorts, Doctor Larch. Not only does he take care of the children, but Larch also performs abortions, which were highly illegal in the time the movie is set, the 1940s. The doctor has taught Homer the trade, but Homer stubbornly refuses to perform abortions. One critical scene early in the movie is when a young girl arrives at the orphanage, seeking an abortion. She has already had one performed, but the abortionist made an error and did not finish the job, leaving surgical equipment and significant internal injuries in her. Doctor Larch attempts to save the girl’s life, but the damage is too great and she dies on the operating table. After this, Larch argues with Homer, stating that “this is what doing nothing gets you, Homer. It means that someone else is going to do the job – some moron that doesn’t know how.” This quote and that of Mister Rose are two of the most important in the movie and show a clear relation – lawmakers who don’t live at the orphanage made abortions illegal, but Larch makes his own rules, reasoning that abortions will happen anyway and because he knows how, it’s better he do it than the “moron that doesn’t know how.”

At first glance, this position is completely viable. If a law appears to be unreasonable, if a rule is restrictive and made by someone who isn't there to know its implications, then it would seem to be fair to break it. It would seem even more just to break it if by doing so, a life will be saved or other good done. Initial logic would suggest that one should make ones own rules every day and that an outsider has no right to impose their restrictions upon others. This would line up with ego consequentialism and utilitarian ethics, doing what is considered best for oneself and the social group, the people affected by a decision. Larch chooses to perform abortions for those who want them because it is best for them. He knows this breaks the law, but he considers the law to have been imposed by outsiders who don’t understand, and thinks it is worth breaking. He makes his own rules every day.

On deeper investigation, this position is shown to be completely unviable. Firstly, it is open to abuse. This is clearly shown in the actions of Mister Rose, who makes his own rules and these lead him to rape and impregnate his own daughter. Each human is fallible and imperfect, so it is only to be expected that each individual will make mistakes and errors with rules. Allowing individuals to determine their own rules each day opens a Pandora’s Box of danger. There has to be a standard, otherwise all that is left is anarchy.

Without a standard, total relativism is permitted and the only ethic left is a bastardised form of ego consequentialism, where people make decisions only on imperfect and potentially sinful desires and impulses. A standard of law is necessary, and while some laws may seem unjust to some people, all laws are made with consideration of circumstances, they are open to reasonable and intelligent dispute, evolve with time and society, and are made through open and accountable processes. They are designed to keep order, and if one sees an injustice in the laws, there are avenues of complaint that can be utilised. Larch is outside his rights to break the law simply because he deems it necessary, and Mister Rose’s own failings show that imperfect humans cannot be trusted to devise their own rules.

Many would ask who has the right to set down laws. It is apparent that there are absolutes and that they need to be acknowledged for society to continue to function appropriately. Therefore, the system of ethics known as deontological ethics should be used. This system revolves around the premise that there are absolute ethical standards that can be known and in essence, deontological ethics provide the standard society requires. Functioning by these ethics, there is an absolute lawgiver who has the ability to make rules and laws – God. Through his revelation, rules and laws are made apparent, and for a significant portion of human history, society has devised ethics from these and functioned satisfactorily via implementing them. In addition, God by his very nature is all-powerful and thus establishes governments to determine laws over their countries. With an absolute lawgiver at the peak of a system, it can be seen that established laws should be followed, instead of new laws made by individuals every day to suit personal desire. Without an absolute lawgiver, it can be seen that society’s ethical basis becomes fragmented and unstable.

From a study of ethics, it can be seen that Mister Rose’s statement is untrue. Humanity’s imperfection means that if individuals are left to make their own rules, flawed decisions and anarchy will result. Society requires a standard of laws to live up to, and deontological ethics should be used. By this system, there is an absolute lawgiver and if one has a dispute with established laws, they should not break them but instead challenge them using proper processes. A society where individuals determine their own rules every day is a dangerous one without a foundation.

Anyone want to take my place here? Anyone, please? I want to retreat into my world of U2 and literature and never leave.

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  • (no subject)

    I was sorely tempted to intentionally write an entry today that had absolutely nothing to do with Christmas. I considered a rant about the state of…

  • (no subject)

    It has just struck me that on the 65th anniversary of the Tangiwai disaster that killed my great-uncles and that my Grandpa somehow survived, I will…

  • (no subject)

    This month is just flying right past me. I refuse to believe that it is actually the 18th already. I suspect a number of my Worst Cards Ever will be…