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Showing content with the highest reputation on 03/19/18 in all areas

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    We're a week away from the beginning of two postseason events: DuelistGroundz's Winter 2018 Seasonal Playoffs and Winter Classic. Winter Classic A lot has happened since Bullet Club emerged victorious in the current-format Autumn split of 2017. With the dissolution of All the Outs, ESPN, and the Seraphim, Bullet Club now contends with Storm of Ragnarok for the #1 spot after suffering a number of harrowing losses, most notably to Team Egypt of DuelingBook Forums. Two of Bullet Club's stars have also left the franchise to start their own team: Noxjja and Nicey will represent Tea and Biscuits during these postseason events. I heard that Metro briefly held the position of Chief Strategic Coordinator of Bullet Club, but was eventually ousted from the role for his poor performance. Lastly, a familiar face scored quite the upset just two weeks prior at DCS: New York City. Lemo Pear Gang has emerged from the ashes, having gradually rebuilt since their disqualification last fall, and claimed a DCS title through rip kid no cry. Based on their performances from the regular season, Bullet Club, Storm of Ragnarok, and FuZe Gang are likely locked in their seats for the Winter Classic, leaving one spot up for grabs between Bazoo Boys, Tea and Biscuits, and Lemo Pear Gang. The competition is even more intense on the Goat side of the leaderboard. Neo Sigurimi narrowly carries the first seed over Damage Step, with Workshop for Metalworker and FuZe Gang trailing far behind. Tha 4HUNNIDS and Fluffy Lions will duke it out in exhibition wars to see which, if any, of them can wrestle the #4 seed from FuZe Gang. Four exhibition wins for either team would be enough to do it -- FuZe Gang is not likely to be able to start and finish any wars of their own with only seven remaining days. Seasonal Playoffs - Winter 2018 For almost three months now, the Goat community has wrestled with a singular question: who will stop Jazz? With back-to-back wins at the last two GS-certified events, one of which earned him his seat in this very event, Jazz is the most decorated Goat duelist in the entire league by a long shot. In those three months, Jazz has also fired back strongly against the common concerns towards the end of last year that the format could devolve into Chaos Control mirrors, having won both DCS Juneau and FLC1 with the same pure Goat Control list. It turns out that the shock in pure Goat Control lists observed in the field of the Alpha Omega Memorial wasn't just an altruistic gesture to honor Max Suffridge (RIP) -- it was, in fact, the early symptoms of a full-on renaissance of the archetype of Goat Control. Defending Seasonal Playoff champion MMF will be the first of Jazz's contenders, but likely not the last: Mascis, HyperBeam, and Chevalier de Fromage have all teetered back and forth on the brink of Master Duelist rank over the course of the Winter season, the latter two hot off their Day 2 performances at FLC2 just this past weekend. Fan (but not Masha) favorite Kasper has also breached the coveted 100 Elo mark very recently, leaving him as Jazz's projected first-round opponent if no one else follows suit. However, trailing these five are WGM, Brandis72, Soul, Silver, Tristan, Carl Waite and Shining Blue-eyes along with a few other duelists such as Gojira and G-sop who are inactive as of now, but could still spike the Elo ratings in the remaining week of the season. Three competitors in this season's current-format playoffs are all but certain: rip kid no cry, Noxjja, and Chevalier de Fromage. Tristan's losses to rip kid at DCS: NYC have left him just outside Master Duelist rank, but for most of the season he maintained it comfortably (while winning back-to-back Card Overflow monthlies) and could easily make up for his losses in the remaining week of ranked play. Knowing that every win he scores is a win against Metro and his peanut gallery, Noxjja will be playing at the top of his game with his beloved Odd-Eyes deck, while it remains to be seen what Storm of Ragnarok and Lemo Pear Gang have in store for this event.
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    "i knew a person who could cultivate the words that they aligned in a way that could coerce a train to fly a perfect state of mind in which to learn creative rhymes until their person was emburdened by the verses they designed and they began to lose their touch... the little quirks in all their writing became terse and uninviting and ingesting any lettering they surgeoned into life instead of being entertainment was inert and just absurd and all the work was fucking tiring and suddenly... they were writing less and less in spite of their success they saw no light and second guessed the creativity they harbored in their heart there's only so much fucking artwork you can make 'til you forget the way to start so a couple million people saw some dipping in the frequency of music while they fought idiosyncracy that slept as mental illness... and woke as some peculiar train of thought that masqueraded as a symptom of a hindering deliquency i hope that all these words have made you think of me" -Atlas Today is the last day of Spring Break so I won't be around much again for a while. Consider this a parting gift, a fruit of some of my studies the past three years. Introduction The theory and practice of psychoanalysis has remained controversial since its founding in Freud. Analytic-minded liberals have attacked it ad nauseam as not being founded on sufficiently empirical content, and therefore not a legitimate science. For all his now-famous anonymous case-studies, Freud himself admitted much of his theory was based on self-reflection. The attacks on psychoanalysis, inter alia, posit that too much of psychoanalytic theory is derived a priori. On the other hand, it has been criticized from the left as well for its Oedipal structure, particularly in Deleuze and Guattari. Finally, there are enemies of the progression of the science from within the science itself, as we can find in the hell that Jacques Lacan went through in his efforts to not only "return to Freud," but also to advance psychoanalysis with enrichment from concepts such as the Mirror Stage, the Real-Symbolic-Imaginary trinity, the statement that "the unconscious is structured like a language," jouissance/surplus-enjoyment, etc. Naturally, the latter (Lacan) is attacked also on political grounds: See Scruton and, ostensibly less overtly political (yet more mature of a critique than Scruton,) Sokal. Such is the state of traditional attacks on psychoanalysis. However, now in the 21st century, advancements in research have progressively softened the voices of these cliched attacks, providing evidence for Ego Psychology: https://qz.com/728039/growing-research-in-neuroscience-shows-that-freuds-idea-of-a-superego-isnt-as-wacky-as-it-sounds/ Further, let us review the testimony of leading physicist and String Theorist Michio Kaku: "Well, scientists now have looked at Freudian Psychology and the brain using all these modern techniques, and first of all we realize that perhaps Sigmund Freud wasn't totally wrong. There are many textbooks that simply dismiss Freudian Psychology calling it 'nuts,' that is nothing but the 'sexual fantasies of a repressed Venetian scientist of the last century.' But now we realize there's more to it. First of all the Unconscious Mind - we can actually see the brain in motion, and we realize that much of the activity is totally unconscious, just like what Freud predicted. And Freud also said there is the Ego, the Id, and the Superego, that we are in a constant battle with our desires and our conscious, and we see that now with brain scans. The 'Ego' is basically your prefrontal cortex. . . . And then, your desires, we see the pleasure center, right there in the center of the brain. . . . And then your conscious is right behind your eyes, the orbital frontal cortex is where your conscious is." [I'd like to remind those who consider Kaku a "pop-physicist" that he has authored several graduate-level textbooks, including one on Quantum Field Theory (QFT) I'm currently reading.] While I'm personally absolutely content with a priori theorizing in psychoanalysis (bear in mind that, per Kojève's treatment of Hegel, the origin of self-conscious geist is desiring-Desire,) the blessing of this scientific verification allows us a starting point from which to, on hopefully less controversial grounds, base our theorizing about the Stupid Card Game. First, though, for non-initiates it is necessary to explain the basics of Freudian psychology. Ego Psychology Psychoanalysis posits three psychical systems: the Id, the Ego, and the Superego. The Id is that primordial part of the psyche that deals with desire, and operates on the pleasure principle. It produces images of desire and makes no distinction between whether that desire has been fulfilled or not. Ignoring nightmares, since our unconscious Id is operating while we are asleep, we dream about what we want. (This has recent scientific dream-study evidence to support it.) This production of images of desire is called the primary process. The Ego interacts with the material world in order to fulfill the desires of the Id, and thereby operates on the reality principle. It is our conscious logos. It is concerned not with the morality of an action, only with whether or not that action fulfills the desire that the Id produces. A lucid dream is considered the activation of the conscious Ego whilst asleep. (This also has recent scientific dream-study evidence to support it.) The process of interacting with the material world to actualize the desires of the Id is called the secondary process. Finally, the Superego, which quite literally supersedes the Ego, is that system of morality or ethos which checks on the conclusions of the Ego regarding which decision it makes, and represses those which contradict the morality of the person. Since psychoanalysis argues that early childhood is the most rapidly-developing stage of the psyche, the socially-accepted morality passed down to us by authority figures, mostly parents in societies imbued with the family structure, will likely end up as our morality. (Clearly a sufficiently self-aware person can battle against this and hold a different ethos, but for the general, non-reflective person, this is the case.) Such are the three systems constituting the psyche. What is their dynamic? They exchange what is called psychic energy with each other. Psychic energy (or, mental energy) is nothing mystical. It's just like other types of energy from physics and thermodynamics. When the Ego is activated, an amount of psychic energy is transferred to the Ego. Similarly, when the Superego represses both desire and decisions the Ego makes, psychic energy is transferred to it. One's personality is considered the totality of these three distributions of psychical energy. Someone whose psychic energy is mostly dwelling within the Id may be called impulsive. Someone whose psychic energy is mostly dwelling in the Ego might be called smart. Someone whose psychic energy is mostly dwelling within the Superego might be called moral. Since there is only a finite amount of psychic energy, more energy devoted to one of the systems will mean less devoted to at least one of the others. An impulsive person might not be the brightest. A bright person might be a maniac serial killer and not care as much for morals. An ethical person may suffer from the repression of their desires a lot. Finally, psychoanalysis suggests that a good balance of psychic energy in all three systems is the key to a healthy psyche. There is a bit more to this, such as different drives, cathexis, and so on, but these are the basic concepts we'll work with. Circles Hoban, in Road of the King, writes at length about the proper construction of a circle. He is aware, contra possible criticisms, that the added value in a solid member of a circle will nearly always supersede the risk of getting paired with them in an event, up until the point of diminishing returns. He is also aware of the necessity of some diversity in the circle. In other words, if we have two people in a circle that always have the exact same opinions and contributions, then absolutely nothing is added by having the second person there. In such a case, the small outlier of getting paired with them, or other risks, supersede the usefulness of having them there in the first place. But what Hoban didn't talk about, in fairness it probably isn't his area of study, is the significance of the psychoanalytical constitution of the circle. This shall be the main business of this article. Let us translate the concepts above laid out in terms of the Stupid Card Game. Our Id produces the desire to win. The Ego interacts with deckbuilding and technical play in order to secure that win. The Superego is what stops honest players from cheating, or, it's what produces judges instead of players. Now, just as a higher distribution of psychic energy to one system impacts the distribution to at least one of the other two, so too do we realize the different basic personalities of competitive players/judges: 1. Tryhard: Desires very much to win and plays the best decks (Id). Isn't as good at actual deckbuilding or technical play (Ego). Might sometimes "push the rules" to fulfill their desire to win (Superego). 2. Effortposter: Doesn't care as much about winning and is thereby opened up to play non-orthodox strategies, or to not play in tournaments much at all (Id). Excels in deckbuilding and technical play (Ego). Asks many questions about what the rules allow, insofar as they manifest themselves as higher optimizations in technical play (Superego). 3. Judge: Desires little to win, so when they do play, they don't use very good decks (Id). Isn't the best at deckbuilding or technical play (Ego). When they do play, though, they make sure to follow the rules, and they are extremely knowledgeable about rulings and the like (Superego). The thesis here is that just as a balanced distribution of psychic energy is key to a healthy psyche, so too is a good circle balanced between Tryhards, Effortposters, and Judges. A circle ought have, therefore, at minimum at least one Tryhard who will be the one actually playing and putting the team on the map, at least one Effortposter whose theory the Tryhard(s) use in order to actually win, and finally at least one Judge who is an invaluable resource for both the Tryhard and the Effortposter. For the Tryhard, the judge keeps them on the right track as a clean player, and lets them know where not to push the rules. For the Effortposter, their relation to the judge is the opposite, they learn where they can push the rules. Moreover, a corollary from the idea of psychoanalytical balance in a circle is that, when new players are added, it should be made sure that the groups are at least roughly still proportionate to each other. Instead of having 5 Tryhards and 1 Effortposter, you'd want either 4 and 2 or 3 and 3. There's a point where you have more players than the Effortposters can convert their theory to. On the other hand, there's a point where you have a really good collection of Effortposting nerds, but their efforts are useless because they have no Tryhards. Always keep this distribution in mind when you go beyond the minimum three-per-circle. The question of whether this proper constitution of a circle may be extrapolated to that of a team, for DuelistGroundz's current purposes, I'll leave for you to contemplate. Perhaps you'll find it helpful for warring. That's it for now, thanks.