Friday, June 18, 2010

Starship Troopers

Hmm... Now I see where Orson Scott Card got a lot of his background for Ender's Game. The setting is a futuristic world where only military veterans can vote. (However, while serving, military members cannot vote.) The system 'evolved' after the excesses of democracy in the late 20th century. The military put the group ahead of the individual and thus were the best to restore order to society. Military service is still optional, with no penalty for not serving (or dropping out).

The narrator of the story 'accidentally' enlists in the military, partially because he is with a friend, and partially because he runs in to a girl on the way. Most of the story is about his observations of life and the military service. In the end, some aliens blow up Buenos Aires and we get a little action as they fight the bugs.

The first person narrative is engaging and personal. The book was much different than the raw, raw fighting novel I was expecting. On the surface, it is a glorification of the military. However, the "military" that is glorified is much different than what we have today. Limiting the franchise is always somewhat arbitrary. The author presents good evidence in favor of limiting it to members that have served voluntarily in the military.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Mere Christianity

C.S. Lewis professes not to be a religious leader. Instead, he presents an intellectually rigorous layman's view of Christianity.
His attempt is to provide an intellectual foundation for Christianity regardless of sect. He points out that science can know everything about the entire Universe, yet still not know where the universe came from. With God "outside" the known universe, we would not expect to find fully about him through scientific inquiry.

He brings few additional interesting analogies for Christian principles. He uses the "dimensionality" argument to explain the lack of "time" in God's world. (He can move along dimensions around us.) He also analysis sexual urges by comparing it to food. While we all eat, we don't have food strip-teases or similar things as with sexual desire.

It provides many other good "arguments" for Christian principles (including the resurrection) that help make them clear from the point of view of somebody inside or outside of a Christian sect.

Amazing Days Of Abby Hayes, The #14: It's Music To My Ears

This is part of a series of "tween" books about a 6th grader who finds people "changing" and getting crushes. The writing quality has a lot to be desired, but it does start the pick up. The story seems to end abruptly with the girl deciding that she can act herself instead of being subsumed by a crush. However, it is a fairly nice, light reading, and a step above the Rainbow Fairy books.

Mysteries of the Middle Ages: The Rise of Feminism, Science, and Art from the Cults of Catholic Europe

This book is not a "history", but more a cherry-picking of historical events to fit modern sensibilities. At times the author attempts to show restraint and not go too far overboard with unproven speculation. However, he is more than willing to make absolute pronouncements without even considering the other side. Catholic doctrines and people that he doesn't like are just dismissed as poppycock, while those small ones that he likes are built up to be super important. The end of the book drifts in to a seemingly unrelated diatribe against modern priestly celibacy and abuse.

The work is not really revisionist history, but more "refocussed" history. The author attempts to bring out lesser known bits of history to buttress his view of modern society. There are a few good bits of the "lesser-known" history. But the strong bias and arrogant rambling of the narrative are a huge distraction.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Happy Hollow

Saturday, I went to Happy Hollow for the first time. We have had a membership for a few years (half of which it was closed), but I had never made it out there. My soon knew that the 25 bus went out there, but it was actually quicker to take the 522 to the 73 bus.

I was not sure exactly where it was, but managed to get off the bus at the right place. There was a nice sign on the corner saying that Happy Hollow was open. We coul see some of the rides behind the fence. So, we thought it would be a quick walk in.


We had to walk a long ways down the road to get to the parking lot. This must almost be it. (After all, they were charging $10 to park there.)


After that there was a long walk down a path to finally get to the entrance. At least they had bike racks right next to the entrance. (Though there wasn't a bike present.)

Free entrances are one of the things that I loved about Chicago's Lincoln Park Zoo. You can stroll along the lakefront, meander through the zoo, then stroll out for a donut at the Sushi/donut shop.

Even the Santa Cruz Boardwalk has the charm of free access. You can "enter" from multiple places, even stroll in from the beach. You do have to pay for rides separately, but the food vendors are fine with taking money from 'non-riders'.

The $12 admission at Happy Hollow does give you free rides, as well as access to the zoo. We visited the bathroom, road the merry-go-round, saw some monkeys, lemurs and a few birds and other assorted animals, dug in a "dinosaur bone" sandbox and used the bathroom again before we left. The 73 bus came first, so we ended up taking that home - though we ended up on an accordion 22 instead of a 522. (For some odd reason, the 22 was waiting for long periods of time at the downtown San Jose stops. However, once a 522 passed, it sped right along. Perhaps they have some schedule issues - the bus driver wanted to do all his waiting at once.)

It was a nice trip for a hot day, but I think we'll try bikes next time.

The Complete Infidel's Guide to the Koran

As expected from the title, this is an analysis of the Koran written for the non-Muslim common person. The author focuses on the violent, jihadist tendency of the Koran, attempting to play down peaceful interpretations of the Islamic holy book. It is highly critical of the Koran and Islam, especially in areas that they contradict common western and Judeo-Christian beliefs.

Early on, the author states that the reader does not have to read the Koran because he (the author) has. He later states that many of the Muslims in non-Arabic countries have never read the book, and thus are prone to accept violent interpretations given by their spiritual leader. I guess he is trying to do the same towards non-Muslims.

The book follows a common organization, with the author giving a "peaceful" interpretation of a topic my Muslim apologists. He then attempts to refute that with a "vengeful" view by jihadist clerics. He also throws in "off the wall" interpretations as well as "misleading interpretations" by western political leaders.

He is prone to heavy over-generalizations and a strong bias towards received western wisdom and scripture. (Thus, he claims the bible never incites violence, and is critical of passages in the Koran that seem to contradict biblical accounts of the same situations.) In the end, he even goes so far to advocate a banning of immigration of all Muslims in the the United States.

The key takeaway is that Islam is much more traditional and integrated in to political life than Christianity. Some of the values in the Koran are obviously different than accepted secular western values. However, there are plenty of values in the bible that are also different. While it may be useful to provide an analysis of the war-like tendencies of the Koran, this book is so blatantly anti-Islam that the arguments get lost in the fireballs.

Saturday, June 12, 2010


I loved the style of Generation X, but never did get around to finishing it. JPod is written in Coupland's bouncing-around, pop-culture obsessed, stream-of-conscious style. However, take away all of this, and there is not a whole lot.

It is set in the suburbs of Vancouver, B.C., with the main character (Ethan) being a relatively sane person in an insane world. He works at a video game company where management always manages to get in the way, and he spends most time socializing with the other coworkers in his "J-Pod" His parents behave like overgrown teenagers. His brother introduces him to a Chinese "businessman" that seems to be able to get just about anything "done".

Coupland also inserts himself in the novel (as sometimes nice jerk.) He demands Ethan's computer as a prerequisite for joining a business venture. (And thus we are given the reason for the 'origination' of this book.)

This book also much better on paper than an audiobook. It gets painful hearing the narrator read out some of the random lists of words and acronyms. It is much better read as a web-surfing brain dump.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Liberal Fascism

What is fascism? To most people it is just something "bad" that had something to do with World War II. This might make for good rhetoric and name calling, but it doesn't tell us much of anything about it. In Liberal Fascism, Jonah Goldberg attempts to provide a definition by analyzing the history of Italian fascism and some of the key tenants. Communists helped to paint fascism as an evil right-wing ideology. However, it would be better described as "right-wing socialism". Instead he sees fascism as the opposite of libertarianism. Regulation, Compassionate Conservatism, and Progressiveness are all forms of fascism.

In tracing the history of fascism, Goldberg points out that many leading intellectuals (and leftists) supported many of the early European fascist ideals. Fascism is a "Secular religion" that does not require complete adherence. Many people adopt "fascist principles" with the desire to help others. Many of the core tenants that are associated with fascism had their roots in the progressive movement of the early twentieth century. The World War I propaganda machine in the US heavily stifled free speech and imprisoned political deserters. Hitler's Germany was at the forefront of progressive policies, including health regulations and welfare. During World War II, the United States actively discriminated and isolated racial groups. The progressives in both places sought to find a greater role for the state, often at the expense of families. The actions and ideology of the German Aryans is similar to that of racial minorities in the US. (In both cases, they see others (Jews or whites) overrepresented in key roles in "their" community.)

Nazism and Italian Fascism are ultimately looked down upon today because they lost the war. Had they won, we would likely be studying the many great political advances of those systems, while trying to brush aside the malfeasance committed. Even communism seems to have a greater degree of intellectual approval, which may be in part due to the Russians being on the winning side of World War II. The core dogmas of the Nazis and fascists are quite similar to those of the American progressives (from which modern liberals descend.)

The author attempts to refute a "liberal dogma" that conservatives do bad things, while any bad done by liberals is merely a "societal problem" of the time. He does this in a very painstaking fashion, pointing out negatives for just about every major figure of the 20th and 21st century left. At times this is interesting, but he seems to go on well after his point has been made. There is also a lack of balance, with the author providing a one-sided portrait in an attempt to counteract the opposite one-sided portrait.

Government regulation is seen as a tool to help empower the corporatist state. Regulations, even when enacted with the best of intentions, often serve to help the entrenched powers, while often raising the barrier to entry for newcomers. The author points out many of the problems with the current political system. However, little is put out in the way of solutions.

It is a shame that he spends so much time "ranting on liberals", because there are some good points in here. However, they are obscured by some of his "rants." At one time he criticizes FDR for being a liberal-fascist-progressive, then he turns around and criticizes him for not being an ideologue. (According to the other we would always seek two opposing groups and have them find a middle ground.) Liberal policies on health care, food and the environment are declared bad because the Nazis had similar policies. And, way to much time is devoted to bashing Hillary Clinton.

The author claims (fairly persuasively) that liberals are the heirs to the "fascist/progressive" movement of the early twentieth century, while at the same time they tend to use "fascist" to demean any conservative opposition to liberal policies. He objects to the growth of government and "statism" that takes over roles traditional proscribed to families and community. Even when groups attempt to enlarge government to help others there are always "unintended consequences". Unfortunately, he confuses some "traditions" with core values and fails to offer much in the area of solutions.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Can the Big 12 be saved?

Nebraska is rumored to be ready to bolt to the Big 10. Colorado is rumored to be ready to bolt to the Pac-10. (Hmmm. Big-12 with 10 schools and Big-10 with 12 schools. Perhaps they can engineer a name swap.) The remainder of the Big-12 south (minus Baylor) has a rumored invite to the Pac-10.

Can the Big-12 save itself?

One option would be to just continue the conference with 10 teams. This would create some issues with staging a Big-12 championship game in Dallas in 2013, though that could probably be worked out. The conference would lose one national power in Nebraska and one potentially large media market in Denver. However, most of the strength would be intact. They may lose the ability to fill one of the lower tier bowls. However, they would likely be able to continue placing two teams in the BCS bowls. The loss of revenue from the championship game would hurt. However, the breakup fees and the fewer teams could leave each team about even financially for the short term.

They could also go aggressive. Invite BYU and Air Force. Both fit nicely in north division and have strong local followings as well as national followings. (If Colorado goes to the Pac-10 without the Big-12 south, it will likely go with Utah.) But why stop there when they can go to the first mega conference. TCU and Houston or New Mexico could be added to the south division. Boise State and Colorado State (or Wyoming) be picks for the north division. (Boise would give the most immediate credibility in football, though it is more of a geographic outlier.)

The new Big-16 could probably argue that the north division deserves the automatic bid that the Mountain West was on the cusp of receiving. Thus, the 2 BCS bids would be locked up. The conference would add to its stranglehold on the Texas market. Utah would be a significant market addition. Colorado would remain fairly strong. Idaho, Wyoming or New Mexico would add somewhat smaller markets.

On the football field, the north would probably remain the weaker part of the conference. However, it will likely be highly competitive, with plenty quality programs.

A Big-12 expansion would leave the mountain west out of existence. San Diego State, UNLV and any other remainders could join the WAC. This is probably nearer to their current level of competition as well as being closer to geographic rivals.

Could the Big 12 pull it off and survive? It seems unlikely now, but we will see how it all fleshes out.

Marketplace of Ideas

This brief book brings out some key contradictions in the field of higher education. Professors are at the forefront of "change" politics, yet they are highly conservative withing their own "fiefdom". They may be willing to travel long distances to encourage a small time to change its "outdated" policies, yet they would be up in arms if the English department tried to make a small change to the course offerings.
Colleges and Universities have gone through a huge growth spurt in the last century. However, today that has leveled off. In order to sustain themselves, Universities must attract more students and maintain their costs. This at times leads to people being sent through the university system that would be better off in vocational programs. Another symptom is the excessive time to complete a PhD program. (Universities use these grad students as low-cost labor, so they have some incentive to maintain the program.)
Many graduate students drop out before completing their degree. This is perversely good, as there are not enough jobs for them. Even the degree itself has only a minimal relationship to the actual job. A graduate student spends significant time gaining detailed knowledge in a highly specialized area, but is often brought in to teach undergraduates in a more general area.
Through all this, the system of higher education remains highly conservative in internal politics, while most of the participants espouse personal politics that lean to the left. Even as the professors claim to be in the "ivory tower", they are still internally subject to market forces. Alas, change is slow to come.

This short book contains a nice, succinct analysis of the evolution and current state of higher education. Some of the individual sections of the book do not flow together well, however, the overall theory theory is well pronounced.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Worthing Saga

Mix Brave New World and Foundation, throw in a few interesting ideas and tell it in the "short story" style of I, Robot, and you end up with The Worthing Saga
What if you could sleep for years at a time, thereby "extending" your life years in to the future? Would this give you "eternal life", or just cause you to "skip" through life.
What would happen if everybody but one person in an isolated colony lost their memory? Would that one person be a deity?
If people had the ability to eliminate pain in everyone in the world, should they?

This "novel" explores all these topics in a series of short stories. The first two-thirds of the book are tied together with a strong thread. The last third are thrown in, and, while often including similar characters or settings, are not well tied together. (They were pushed previously in a couple different collections.)

This is some of Card's earliest work, and also some of his strongest. Many of the ideas are explored in greater detail in his other books (especially the Ender and Alvin Maker books) It opens many questions, while answering few. It brings out some strong characters in Jason Worthing and Abner Dune, but leaves the reader to make judgments. Is one good and the other bad? Or are they good in their own ways? Is destruction a way of building up? Is enforced good a form of evil?

A few of the stories at the end of the book are weaker than the earlier stories, however, they still remain pretty good. Two stories provide the same event from different point of views - with significant differences in details and names. This actually works by declaring one a "third-hand recollection" of the story.

Monday, June 07, 2010

Food of a Younger Land

I wanted to like this book, but just couldn't get in to it. America Eats was a planned depression-era book documenting regional food and eating habits in the United States. Due to Pearl Harbor, the book was never fully edited and published. However, plenty of content was written and submitted. This book attempts to assemble that in a relatively coherent tome. Unfortunately, it ends up as disjointed goulash.

The author includes bits of his current voice bringing things to our days, but also includes essays bringing 19th century food in to the times of the depression. A few essays are included, as our tidbits about the authors. It is organized along geographic regions, though the different regions are of various qualities.

In all, the author tries to do too much, and just ends up with a mess. It would take a lot more work to get it in to a coherent volume. Perhaps a better bet would be to "un-novelize" it, and just include a random selection of the best recipes and essays without the excess commentary.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Chicago Style Deep Dish (Spinach) Broccoli and Swiss Chard Pizza

2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup white flour
2 teaspoons yeast
1.5 teaspoons salt
1.5 teaspoons sugar
1 cup warm water
1/2 cup oil

2 1/2 cups seasoned tomato sauce (such as Trader Joe's pizza or Marinara sauce, or any good store bought or homemade sauce)
3/4 cup shredded cheese

1 clove garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
10-12 large leaves of Chard
1.5 cup chopped broccoli

3 cups shredded cheese

* Can substitute spinach for the chard. Or to make it easy, just mix 4 cups of chopped spinach with the sauce to make two Spinach pizzas

dissolve yeast in water
mix flours, salt and sugar
add yeast, water and oil to dry mixture
knead together and let rise for about an hour (less or more rising time is fine.)

Grease two 9 inch pie pans (they should be at least one inch high.)
Break up the dough in to two equal parts. With fingers, spread the dough out in the pan to cover the bottom and sides.

Remove the Chard greens from the ribs. Finely chop the greens. If desired, chop the stalks also. Saute the garlic in olive oil. Add chopped chard. Saute over low heat until well done. Should produce about 2 cups when cooked.

Combine tomato sauce and cheese. In one pan add broccoli and cover with half the sauce. Mix the chard with the remainder of the sauce and poor in to second pan.

Cover each with shredded cheese (about 1/2 cup each).

Back at 450 degrees F for about 25-30 minutes.

Dough based on this recipe

Saturday, June 05, 2010

Stone Tables

Stone Tables is a work of fiction, postulating on the family life of Moses. The focus is on Moses's childhood and early relations with the Pharaoh in Egypt. The fictionalization takes as its basis a very literal interpretation of the Bible. Any disconnections with recorded history are explained. (Pharaoh hated Moses and the Israelites, and thus removed all historical records of them.)

Moses is portrayed as a strong military leader who was next in line to become leader of Egypt. However, the royal family also had plenty of other pretenders to the throne who would love to see him out of the way. In an attempt to understand prejudice towards Israelites, he goes peasant, kills an Egyptian and thus loses everything as he heads out to Midian.

The woman in this story are given a much more prominent role. Moses sister Miriam is a key player of the "revolution". The Pharaoh of Moses' youth is a kind woman, while the "bad" Pharaoh was put in place throw some machinations of his mother. This Pharaoh was actually taught by Moses (thus explaining some of his reluctance to give in to Moses in spite of the plagues.)

The plagues and exodus happen quickly at the last part of the book. Most of the story covers Moses "unknown" youth. Joshua's family history also gets some coverage in order to relate him to the tale of Moses. The ten commandments and Moses death happen in quick succession at the book's end.

Card makes the characters alive, though they still seem somewhat similar to other Card characters.


A Ukrainian family "discovers" their Jewishness, and then seeks to emigrate. They spend some time with a relative in the country before leaving. On the day before leaving, the young boy (Ivan) discovers a mysterious frozen woman lying the forest.

He goes on to live in the United States where he grows up and and becomes an active runner and decathlete. He eventually goes to graduate school where he studies ancient Slavic fairy tales. As part of his dissertation work he goes to Ukraine to study some primary sources. After being there for a while, he decides to go back and visit his relative. While there, he runs back through the forest, where he sees the mysterious woman, eventually wakes her, and, to save himself from a bear, proposes marriage.

After proposing marriage, he follows here across a bridge to her world, which turns out to be a thousand-year old medieval village that has recently converted to Christianity and adopted the Cyrillic alphabet. As a scholar he is in heaven. Here is the answer he is seeking in his dissertation as well as many new language and historical discoveries. (What scholar wouldn't love to go live among his primary sources?)

Unfortunately, the fairy tales are also "real" and he has to battle the evil witch Baba Yaga and the bear. Eventually, he takes the princess back to America, where he discovers his cousin is actually a god. Baba Yaga also follows them, deciding to take an airplane back to her world. They all return to the ancient world where they strip her of her "bindings" and free the village. Ivan and the princess live happily ever after, splitting time between the ancient and the modern worlds.

The book explores a number of interesting topics together. Time travel, fairy tales, language origins, "missing history", and "fish out of water experiences" all could provide interesting novels on their own. Together it works quite well. Throughout the book there is some "mysterious force" that nobody understands, though it is actively hinted. This seems almost ready to be made in to a movie.

Maya The Harp Fairy

Two girls are at a wedding. The harp is out of tune because goblins stole the magical harp. The girls team up with Maya the Harp Fairy to try to find the missing harp. They don't have to search long before they hear beautiful harp music coming from a Goblin playing the harp. The goblin gets away, but the fairies chase him, and get the harp back by playing two goblins off against each other. The wedding then goes off without a hitch.

The story is very simple with one-dimensional characters. Nobody would call it literature, but it was a fun, quick read. While it may follow a simple formula, it does it quickly without going off on tangents. The group of "Daisy Meadows" authors know their audience well. "Under 10" girls (and even boys) seem to love the stories. The use of just about every girl name in the titles probably doesn't hurt.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Lost Boys

Lost Boys is the most personal and perhaps the best Orson Scott Card novel. It is part "memoir of Mormon life in the south", part "struggles of a freelancer in the early home-computer era" and part light-fantasy novel.

It starts with a Mormon family moving from Indiana to North Carolina, closely paralleling Card's actual move. The minute struggles of daily life of the family are brought out in great detail, as is the inner relations of life in the local church. The characters are all very easy to relate and "real", with no one character being "right" all the time.

The "realistic" story centers around the freelancer's move to the corporate world and his struggles in a rotten small company. This alone would make a quality book.

The "fantasy" deals with a boy that plays with "imaginary" friends who are actually those killed by a child killer. (The book throws out lots of red herrings, who we think are the evil one, but end up being friends of the main characters.)

The introduction is perhaps the biggest fault of the book. It sets up an evil "boy" who commits crimes that will be resolved at a certain point. With this it is set up as a simple mystery. Without this initial knowledge, the book is a much more powerful psychological family thriller. It would have also been nice to see the "super amazing video game" better explained. (Why was he able to communicate with the missing via a video game that was better than anything possible?)

Pac-10 Expansion Rumors

Some new Pac-10 Expansion Rumors have the Pac-10 inviting Texas, Texas A&M, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and Colorado. Basically, they take the Big-12 south, but exchange Colorado for Baylor. (Will some politicians come to rescue Baylor this time?)

If this comes to fruition, Baylor and Iowa State will probably be in the most trouble. The other four teams could probably fend for themselves. One possibility would be a merger of the remaining teams with the Mountain West. If the 6 remaining teams could claim to be the "Big-12", they could invite Utah, BYU, TCU, Colorado State, Air Force and one other team (Boise State?) and maintain their BCS qualification.

If the Pac-10 forms a mega-conference, a more likely scenario would see the Big-10 doing so also. Nebraska and Missouri would be logical choices. Pittsburgh and Rutgers from the Big East would also be likely. Who would the final school be? Syracuse? Notre Dame? This would leave the Big East all put dead as a football conference. If the ACC is willing to jump in the mega-conference game, it could add a few of the remaining teams. South Florida could even hope that the SEC goes the mega-conference route.

As for the remaining Big-12 teams, the Mountain West conference seems like a good fit for Kansas and Kansas State. If they add Boise State, that will give them 12 members. Baylor could probably find a home in Conference USA, with Iowa State struggling to find a fit. (Perhaps the MAC will work for geographical expediency.)

However, there are a number of big why's. Why would the Pac-10 stoop so far below themselves? Texas is a good fit in everything but geography. The athletics, academics and culture all mesh well with the Pac-10. Colorado is another great fit with the Pac-10. It doesn't have a TV market as large as Texas, but Colorado is growing nicely. Texas A&M is decent, with similar academic and athletic performance, though it is culturally more conservative. The TV market would significantly overlap with Texas, but would help to lock in the state of Texas.

Oklahoma and Oklahoma State are a little more dicey. They both have strong athletic records. However, they are a step below the Pac-10 academically. Oklahoma is not a big TV market. However, they do have somewhat of a national following.

Texas Tech is the big question mark. Their teams are ok. The academics are so, so. And the TV market? Well, Lubbock does rank in the top 150 TV markets. You will find some Tech fans throughout the state, but not much to worry about. Tech also breaks with the nice two-symmetry in the conference. Why not add Utah instead and get a better institutional match, along with a Colorado/Utah mountain pair. Or perhaps Air Force and get a Colorado pair.

Perhaps it is simply a plot to reduce travel. Send the Arizona schools off with the others, and you have a nice West coast mini conference that only has to head over the mountains for a championship game. Or perhaps it is an attempt to totally break the Big-12 in order to make it easier to get the prize (Texas). We will see.

Man's Search For Meaning

The first half of this book describes Frankl's experiences in a concentration camp, while the second half goes into more detail on "logotherapy". At the opening, he states some reluctance to write about concentration camps - those that have been there already know what it was like, while those that have not will never be able to comprehend. His account focuses on the mental decisions that are made. The underlying philosophy is that we may not be able to control are circumstances; however, we can control how we experience them. We should not expect overwhelming optimism in the face of adversity; however, we can still try to maintain our humanity and not give in to utter despair.

His account seems somewhat detached. he comes across almost as an impartial observer who happens to make wise decisions and overcome the challenges of the camp. (Perhaps this is part of the philosophy of not dwelling on the bad.) He casually admits it is was a lucky decision that allowed him to survive the camp at all. He also tells the story of one inmate who expected "liberation" at the end of March - and promptly died then.

The sections on logotherapy covers more basis of his psycotherapy philosophy. Part of it involves a search for "meaning" in life. In some cases it can be to simply get work, acknowledge what good is being done, or other simple things. He also discusses overcoming self-appearing fears (such as fear of sweating) by encourage the fear. And similarly, fighting failure to realize 'intentional' pleasures by fighting them. Together it seems to be "optimistic determinism." Suffering that can be avoided should be avoided. However, that which cannot be avoided should be taken as is and used to seek out greater advantage.