Daniel Mokhtar

Bat Yam, Israel

About Daniel

Bio

Jewish yeshiva student looking to find purpose. I do a little bit of stock trading on the side. Looking for a career if anyone has an extra one lying around to spare.

People don't know I'm good at

self-deprecation, sardonic humor, extended periods of self-loathing.

Comments & conversations

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Daniel Mokhtar
Posted about 4 years ago
Ken Robinson: Do schools kill creativity?
This issue strikes a deep chord with me. Having studied a number of years in a jewish talmudic school (essentially a voluntary place of study with no credits, grades, or GPAs to think about) and thereafter pursuing a degree in the regular academic institutions I feel as though I've seen two different worlds. University students in the majority of classes I've participated in simply don't ask questions when something bothers them. Almost no one does. Literally whole lecture rooms are filled with students furiously writing to keep up with transcribing every word and diagram that the teacher has said/written, things that you "need to know for the test" but no one has the time or the comfort zone to just intellectually explore what is being discussed, not to themselves nor with the teacher and fellow classmates. What you're left with is a room full of superbly conditioned transcribers, hell-bent on getting down the material, to pass the test, to pass the final, to get the degree etc etc etc, and a teacher more or less talking to themselves. They say that when archimedes figured out the formula for density he jumped out of the bathouse and ran through the streets naked out of the sheer joy of his intellectual discovery. Do you think the average student in today's educational system would react the same upon their discoveries? or more importantly, is the average student inculcated with a sense of being on a path of exploration within which there is something to even discover?! We're very far from the joy of learning for discovery's sake in our current structures...
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Daniel Mokhtar
Posted over 4 years ago
Sam Harris: Science can answer moral questions
I'm a little surprised by the silliness of the argument. It's almost a tautology. Obviously within any system under discussion you can assign values and prioritize hierarchical "morals". No one would argue with that. The gist of the issue rather is can we be absolutely certain that there isn't a larger, deeper frame of reality OUTSIDE of our system which would then redefine our conscience of true objective reality. Ex. the author would argue that 'rationally' killing someone is bad (to which i'd certainly agree but that's not the point) when in fact, LOGICALLY speaking (not even from a religious standpoint), that is ultimately unprovable assertion. There is no way to assign objective values of a system from within itself, only from the outside. In other words, no one can ever ultimately prove scientifically, logically, or rationally that a Hannibal Lecter the cannibal is morally wrong. You think it's good when people live and he thinks it's good when they're eaten... silly argument.
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Daniel Mokhtar
Posted over 5 years ago
Mark Roth: Suspended animation is within our grasp
I wanted to speculate an additional use for the above and that would be coping with various withdrawal symptoms and rehabilitations of addictions and compulsions. Call it nothing more than a theory but as I see it, the mechansim of suspnded animation is in its essence a weaning of a human being from a state of "Life Processes" as it were (or "hyper-physiological life processes" in cases of addictions) towards a more dormant state of reduced process/drives and needs. This could be useful to addicts who find themselves overwhelmed by the urge/need/compulsion to experience "another high". Albeit it becomes essentially a quasi "libidinal death" and stunting of the human process of creativity-- for use as an emergency effort, as a temporary means of weaning addicts slowly off of their addictions it could prove to be very helpful. The all-consuming compulsion of an addict to "get-something" could be stunted and replaced instead with a contentment of just "being". my$.02
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Daniel Mokhtar
Posted over 5 years ago
George Whitesides: A lab the size of a postage stamp
I would have to agree. The first time I listened to the lecture I thought wow, great. nice lecture. Now after listening to it the second time I kinda got the feeling like he's talking down to his listeners... and after repeatedly skipping areas of "detail" where "he didn't want to go into" he then goes off on a relative tangent about his eggbeater invention and spectrometer.. I find it hard to believe that there isn't more explanation given as to why the editor rejected his journal.. the story just doesn't seem to add up frankly.. but I could be wrong. I know nothing about these journals or their editors. And finally yes, i think what's sorely missing is the a final discussion of the application of these inventions. Is he in talks with any major organizations about these things? Is he looking into putting any or all of the above mentioned into actual hands-on production...so on and so forth. Things just don't add up and at the end I'm just left with a question mark..my amateur 2cnts
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Daniel Mokhtar
Posted over 5 years ago
Philip K. Howard: Four ways to fix a broken legal system
while the author's 4 points are true, theres an underlying problem far more daunting. The current legal systems' problems has it's roots in basic societal indifference and apathy towards it . When living in NY&LA I used to visit/sit in on random cases presiding any given day. Guess what; I was usually the only one EVER there besides for the parties involved. Stupefying! Entire buildings and structures empty of any interest by the society around it (besides, litigants& judicial employees). The legal system is rife with abuse because ultimately the abusers know "What happens in Court, stays in Court" . No one else really cares much. What is needed is a paradigm shift of society's values and perceptions. Only then will u have the resources with which to tackle the problems that the speaker has so deftly described. Anything less and you'll have a better chance gathering everyone together to move mount rushmore over a few inches. Paradigm shifts don't move easy.