The Linear – Singularity Paradox

The gun control debate again shows the mediocre problem solving and analytical skills that is shaping the Millenniums/Generation-Z’s future.

James Lyman BSAE, BSEE, MSSM

The recent mass shootings in El Paso, Dayton and now Odessa/Midland has again stirred the gun control debate and again has laid bare the mediocre limited problem solving and analytical skills of so many people. No one ever stops to ask the simple straight forward question, ‘can gun technology really be effectively controlled?’ The oldest technology still prevalent in the world, and people are actually advocating trying to legislate control or even its banning, despite the massive dismal failures to control other technologies. Trying to control the alcoholic sprits resulted in the eighteenth amendment and prohibition of all alcoholic drinks from beer, to wine, to distilled liquors. There was strong evidence and examples showing alcoholic sprits to be a bad and harmful technology, which humanity would be much better off without. So that was the imputes to outright ban all the manufacture, import and sale of spirts. Which by the same reckoning of those advocating the outlawing of guns today, should have solved the problem for society.

BUT!! But, with the naivete and innocence of a small child, they never thought about the ‘Demand!’, and so never gave that facet of the problem any consideration. However, the small time gangsters and hoodlums thought of it! The ‘Al Capone’s’ of that day often said, “Chicago is a beer drinking town and no law is going to change that!” and so they preceded to open import businesses. And with that came a wave of violent murdering crime sweeping across America, instilling ramped corruption that made the original problem look like a little girl’s musical recital.

Obviously, that problem wasn’t very well thought out.

But one failure to work a problem wasn’t enough, for they did the same thing trying to control another harmful dangerous technology . . . illegal drugs. We made it illegal to transport, sell and possess illegal drugs, again thinking that’s all it would take to erase the problem in society. Well, it certainly didn’t! Not only is the demand still there, but it’s grown to enormous proportions. For decades, we have failed miserable to exclude a ‘smoggiest board’ of highly dangerous deadly drugs. Worst yet, that unfulfilled demand provided the profit incentive to develop even worst, more dangerous drugs to import. The synthetic and opioid drugs have caused havoc and deaths to become a national crisis unto itself. All because of the same mediocre simplistic problem solving and analytical skills of legislatures as evident in the growing gun control debate, and typified by the Linear-Singularity Paradox.

Already, there is a growing problem with what is termed shadow guns, where high quality guns are manufactured having any serial number desired . . . or no serial number at all for that matter, smuggled into America and sold for $500 to $1,000, a price comparable to retail prices from a legitimate legal gun seller. Now the controlling of guns requires serial numbers stamped onto the main body of each and every gun, so the police can use those numbers to prove ownership of a gun in a crime. But what good is that proof if there could be ten guns or even a thousand out there with the very same serial number. One of the principle devices for fighting violent crime is lost! The same with the often spoken of assault guns! Guns are not an American problem, they are a global problem with one gun for every four humans on the planet. In trying to define what an assault rifle is and therefor ban it, people missed its most important characteristic-

An assault rifle is a design requiring a minimum of tools and ability to manufacture.

The famed AK-47 assault rifle (a machine gun) sells on the world market for as little as $25 each. The weapon that gun control advocates most want to ban is much easier to manufacture than a six shot revolver pistol from the old west.

Guns are an uncontrollable technology, just as alcohol and drugs are.

But that’s not what this article is about. It’s the glaring deficiencies in the problem solving and analytical skills of those who we’ve elected to govern us, their mediocre intellectual skills and understanding of technology as exposed by the gun debate. Because those same intellectual deficiencies are being applied to other more important and wide spread problems facing Americans. The problems of obsolescence and people’s replacement by technology.

This brings us to the crux of this article, the Linear-Singularity Paradox, in addressing problems. Untrained people view the world and address problems as a linear-singularity, that is, they consider there is just one and only one thing causing a problem, while also considering the actions in the world as being linear or proportional. In fact, in the real world, there are almost always several causes, often interacting, which is driving a problem, plus the real world is seldom linear or proportional, rather it is either non-linear or more often is probabilistic. Human behavior is most certainly probabilistic, which is what makes their response so unpredictable and therefore so hard to address problems.

Addressing a problem as a linear singularity results in the problem being so over simplified that it become meaningless and therefore impossible to effectively solve. Yet, so many of those elected to govern us are completely unaware of the Linear-Singularity Paradox, let alone strive to avoid using it. Consequently, we are left with serious problems facing the people, such as obsolescence and technology displacement, with little hope of any solutions ever being offered by those elected by us. Instead, we have the nonsense for controlling antiquated gun technology being offered, which will continually cost us large sums of monies yet offer near zero effectiveness . . . just as with the drug war and prohibition.

Bottom line- You can’t expect people who have demonstrated such weak intellectual skills to solve any of the mounting real problems that people are facing in trying to live in a high technology society. Thinking you can control the alcohol, drug or gun problem by simple voting a law banning them is akin to trying to foil the harmful effects from hurricanes, tornadoes and earthquakes merely by outlawing them. It’s a fool’s world that only the most simple minded people would subscribed too. The millennials and generation-Z continue to be squeezed out of the social-economic system simply because we lack the qualified people to govern us who have those intellectual, analytical and problem solving skills necessary to address the problems all American’s are facing. People who have some real understanding of the twenty-first century world they live in.

As exemplified by their serious proposals to outlaw the antique technology of guns.