Sunday

Watching the dwindling bits of Shmoocon.

A bit intersting, but I’m having trouble maintaining focus. One of the talks about disinformation amplification was interesting. I’m hoping it’s posted online soon so Justin can view it for Fact Check This. The speaker didn’t touch too much on how the sketchy information actually feeds into the fact check sites.

Missing Context!!1!


The talk on reporting requirements (and the enabling legislation) was interesting.

Just reporting things a) may not be feasible in the arbitrary timelines, b) might actually negatively affect security, c) doesn’t fit nicely with existing bureaucracy, and; d) might not really tell anyone anything worthwhile.

It’s a shame, and has given me a new perspective on this. The hard-and-fast deadlines really might not do any good. Hmmmm…


But I keep getting distracted by other things.

First, and probably most predictably, was the latest The Fifth Column.

Major takeaways? 1. I had the same thoughts as Moynihan on the San Francisco reparations to black residents; OJ deserves reparations for discrimination he faced in his native city grown u0. 2. The anti-war advocates are proving, once again, that they’re full of shit.

That last bit goes to the disinformation talk I watched. “The Usual Suspects” seem to actually get wrapped into these Russian disinformation campaigns. The one “expert” who’s gotten quite a bit of traction among Libertarian circles the past few years, actually cited something because it had Edward S. Herman’s blessing.

Who’s that? The guy who, with Chomsky, denied the Cambodian genocide. Distortions At Fourth Hand

The are not credible people.

They spent years saying the Russians weren’t going to invade Ukraine.

Then when it happens, it’s because Nazis.

They’re also the ones who said that the US dollar was going to collapse because of the Federal Reserve’s money printing.

And nothing about the collapse of the Euro. LP National will tell you that’s also because of the Federal Reserve.

Countries whose currencies are backed by hard assets will be fine. Like Iran. Their currency is doing great. Please don’t check other news sites, and just go to AntiWar.com. (And I feel filthy for even opening that site….)


Time to watch the closing plenary, and football. Me and the micro-dog.

Afternoons and Coffeespoons

The second half of that stolen title is from my lethargy; I didn’t sleep well last night after being awoken by screaming neighbor kids around 0600.

Topics

I watched the one on the helicopter with OSINT.


The presentation on helicopters was interesting.

The speaker was a bit miffed at Elon Musk over suspending the account(s) that’d been giving out his aircrafts’ locations.

Not sure what you do about that. It’s not really economically viable to pair up aircraft the way you would cars.

I don’t like the account(s) being suspended/silenced, but I do understand why he’s doing what he does.


The ones matching the vaccine QR codes to users gives me a little bit more confidence if there’s isolation and no logging at the places of verification. Several ID factors there, and could assure privacy if there’s no record of check-ins; if the syst4em is isolated without any tallying ability. But it gets to be something like voter ID rules. Naturally, it’s racist if you have to show an ID for anything, and there’s a potential for multiple use of the ID and QR code….

But it does make me feel better than some of the more radical proposals that have been out there…..WEF, Chinese Social Credit score style things.

Still, I maintain that it’s completely inappropriate for private companies to be checking these sorts of things. In some instances, governments are forcing corporations to od it. I disagree with that.

For the companies that are doing it without coercion, fuck you. I’m not giving you money. Certainly not now, and quite possibly for the rest of my life. Your management chose to do this, and you get to live without my business. Good job.

I will not going to go to Madison Square Garden. Your management’s choices caused that. Even if there’s some sort of legal retribution, I’m out. It’s your loss. Apologies to whoever’s performing there, but they made the bed, and they have to sleep in it.

Same goes for the regional burger chain who wanted to see vaxports to even walk in the door to buy a takeout order…I enjoyed your food, but never pay for it myself, again. I also won’t come sit down in one of your stores. If someone else buys and delivers your food, I’d probably eat it, but you’ve lost me as a customer.

I’m also a bit happy I’m not there at the conference, too. If I’d paid for a ticket before the stupid mandate, I might have still gone.

But I’m not going to buy a ticket with your arbitrary decisions.

(I didn’t look at going being a bit short of money courtesy some crypto scammers who’ll remain nameless….)


I also watched the talk talk on textiles and technology.

I guess I understood where she was going at first, but she lost me at the end.

Though I’m hesitant to link to the site, they do have a good copy of the Christmas Letter.

Nobody owes you a job. Certainly nobody owes you a job where you currently live.

I’ve listened to a lot of discussion lately about how artificial intelligence will change how people work…and it’s not a bad thing.

There will always be a market for things that aren’t as perfectly-crafted as a computer would do it.

How many Amish furniture shops are around? Why would you buy from someone who crafted a piece by hand when there’s little question about whether you could actually get something of better quality that’s machine-made?


So more watching tomorrow. I 0robably should look more closely at what’s on tap.

More Less Moose Than Ever

My wife is throwing in some comments here and there as I’m watching.

Watching this right now.

Again, I go back to my thoughts of the past few days.

Government is not going to fix anything.

I understand, and somewhat appreciate, actually, what he’s saying.

He touches on the not-criminalizing-civil-disputes stipulation, but that’s what fucking happens every single time you get government involved.

Worry about “over-criminalizing” things.

What happens when you criminalize anything?

Men with guns. Ultimately that’s what you’ve done when you go to the government to solve an issue.

You stuck the bad sections about “downloading and copyrighting.” Okay? How the hell does anything work if you’ve outlawed those?

Burn this book

Yeah, and if someone can use tools to recite the ideas on to paper, it’s back.

And what does government do, then? They kill people.

I appreciate his role as an attorney, certainly, but I don’t think there’s any benefit to enacting more spaghetti treaties, laws, and regulations.

Do something straightforward to address a particular problem.

Everything should be temporal. Do something to address a particular issue for a limited period of time. If the limited term doesn’t resolve what the remedy attempted to fix, renew it. If it didn’t fix it, pass something different. If the problem went away on its own, great; move on.

Cato, an organization to which I donate, regularly talks about the Wilson Era Jones Act.

Why is that law still in effect?

Move on.

He also talked about signatories just ignoring parts of a ratified treaty, even after attempting to have problematic sections removed, just ignore the parts that don’t fit.

I’m shocked. Shocked. It’s almost as if treaties, being figments of government, don’t work.

Happy to hear his opposition to RealID.

Kind of speaks to where I push back agains the zOMG CBDC!!1! crowd.

Even in the most-authoritarian places, people exchange with each other. There’s trade among the Norks. There[s trade inside the most brutal prisons. People trade with each other; it’s what we do as humans. Yes, you can have my eggs. I don’t like eggs. Even if you don[t have anything to offer me immediately, you can have them. Maybe you’ll help me with something in the future. If not, so what; I wasn’t going to eat them, anyway.

Government can’t stop exchange…short of doing one of the things it does well — kill people.

Do It Again

I really haven’t written much here lately. Variety of reasons for that, but there’ll probably be more to come.

After Robby Soave’s findings about what Meta (read: FB, IG) did in the early months of the Biden Administration is very, very, very disturbing. (Story in case the Tweet thread disappears…) The Livestream is here.

After listening to the livestream, I’m a bit more sanguine. My initial reaction after seeing things unfolding earlier today was to return to my frequent instinct, and just leave.

The sanguinity comes in after watching Jeremy Borin’s response to Crowder.

I’ve paid for BlazeTV for a very long time. Somewhere my MIL has a photo of Glenn hugging a very fat me at a promotion where I’d gotten his phone working after I’d left the radio stations. My replacement at the stations and I got the job done….then he and Stu caught us smoking on the loading dock on the way out of the show. To be young and healthy…

Back on topic, after the “just leave” instinct kicked in big time when I noticed the order-taking from the government (the CDC).

Big tech shouldn’t be seeking direction. Even more, however, government shouldn’t be offering it. Even more importantly, government shouldn’t be giving it.

Speaks a bit to the difference between Rawlsian positive rights, and Lockian negative rights.

But a restriction on government kind of falls into the latter category. With the conclusion that government doesn’t work, you stop looking for it to succeed or fail at anything.

It’s there. It’s always going to be there. And, aside from breaking things, and killing people, it’s not going to ever do anything well.

As a consumer, you minimize your exposure to companies who seek government-like power. As a citizen, you try to restrain government whenever, wherever you can.

And you minimize where you can’t.

Sadly, I need to use some of the commercial tools. I’ll miss IG, but it’s going in the box again. So be it.


Tomorrow, Satureday, and Sunday, I’ll be trying to catch some talks from Shmoocon. I was really physically-exhausted after last year’s foray.

I’m also not spreading around as much cash between inflation, job uncertainty, and probably losing a not-insignificant amount of money dealing with a crypto company who’s likely reeling from FTX, etc..

But I can sit, watch, and write.

On forgiveness

Something I’ve been mulling lately is how long it’s appropriate to hold a grudge.

Not sure what got me on this line of thinking, but it did go into thinking about companies I’m refusing to forgive for things they did during COVID.

I have relatives who probably never bought another Nestlé product after the boycott. Did that go too far? I mean, hearing about this would have been well into the 1980s. (I really don’t remember many current events before about 1985; I remember, vaguely, worry about my dad with the crash into the bridge out of DC; my dad had been TDY at Ft. McNair that day. A bit with the Beruit Embassy bombing, Reagan’s reelection…)

But when do you stop being angry with companies for overbearing things they did? Is it okay to permanently withhold your business?

I do try to forgive people who’ve wronged me, but there’s some I’ll certainly never speak to again if I can….

*STFW for this*

Hmph. I’m going to send this to my psychologist to see what she thinks.

I don’t know. But I’m inclined to never visit the places that wanted vaxports ever again.

Out With The Old

January 2nd, but kind of New Year’s Day because that fell on a Sunday.

Things are moving erratically, but I’ve really been about taking my own damn advice, and just leaving when things are happening that I don’t like.

There’s lots of really awful people around.

I could get upset about it, but that won’t really help anything.

So some changes.

  • GNU Screen. I have to use tmux for work, and have had some stumbles already where I use tmux keystrokes inside screen. So I guess I’ll just get used to it.
  • The Libertarian Party. Again. Unsubscribed from the stupid shit that was coming over their email list, and said I would not be renewing. I won’t. The Libertarian Party of Virginia disbanded itself instead of submitting to the stupid shit coming from the national party. Whatever. You destroyed something. Be proud. There won’t be any more messaging you don’t like, and you might well get fewer votes than Andre Marrou got in 1992. But, like, fuck you. With that, though, I’ve really started in on unfollowing people/accounts connected. I want nothing to do with you, and you can’t have any more of my money.
  • Feeling the same way abour much of hte crypto world, too. I sent bits and pieces of what I’d set aside to a mining operation, and to someone working closely with them. It’s fine. If there’s some lawyer who wants to take up the case, you can take it. I’m finished, and don’t expect to see things resolved. I just don’t want to deal with any more of it.
  • Piecemealing subscriptions. Again, choosing to leave. I’m giving more money to a company, but getting a lot more out of it.

I could keep reciting things, but I’m nog going to waste time doing that.

Move on.

Everything Gets Deleted Eventually

Or people just forget. Popping in on my podcast feeds lately has been Andrew Heaton’s The Political Orphanage.

Specifically, he interviewed the guests from the SoHo Forum Debate I attended last fall.

One of my randomly-consumed podcasts is The Political Orphange by Andrew Heaton.

Recently, he’s interviewed the participants in the debate. Krystol first, then Horton.

I found myself disagreeing with Krystol a lot more in Andrew’s interview. My disagreements really stem from Krystol’s view, that really is from the Cold War, that we need to have things spread all around the world in order to be effective taking out threats.

Things change. I’ve written about this in relation to the changes that have taken place on the battlefield, the Army getting rid of its MASH units.

The US can project foreign policy even without a large presence on the ground. See: Ayman al-Zawahiri or Solelimani..

(Aside: this came up in my podcast feed as I’m writing this.)

War has changed. The folks who’ve taken over the Libertarian Party are stuck in the early 1970s.

My tweet response to Heaton as I was listening to the Horton interview:

As I’ve said here before, for the AntiWar crowd, everything is still the LBJ Daisy ad. Still. Forever.

So I stared digging yesterday on some of the shit that’s come out of the NeoHippie crowd, things I’d forgotten about.

I wrote this back in 2005:

On Orkut I feel like I’m really in the minority in the American Politics community (if you don’t have an Orkut account, and want one, drop me an e-mail). There are so many confirmed Socialists…and those who sincerely believe that the United States was worse than the Soviet Union. I thought those people had really dried up. Now I’m being assaulted by quotes from that Khmer Rouge apologist, Noam Chomsky. It’s really disheartening to see that people still are busy denying what happened in the Evil Empire. Even more disturbing is that it’s still going on today.
What’s more disturbing, and perhaps this speaks to blogs, too, is what people use as evidence for their arguments. I really try to guard against using what I’d consider to be overly-biased sources, yet, these folks have no qualms about doing it. I don’t know if it’s because they are so blinded by their agendas that any evidence is fine, or if they just haven’t ever had to write scholarly papers.
All I can say is it’s really disappointing.

For reference, Orkut was Google’s first social networking site. I had a link to a New York Times article that’s gone away. (Even if the link still worked, I’m sure it’d be paywalled, so pretty much useless.

How did these people come back from the obscurity they so richly deserved?

And they’re running hte Libertarian Party now.

Maybe having a comic from New Jersey as your presidential nominee is deserved.

But the bigger issue is the same as it always was: not everything bad in the world is because of something the US did. That’s the undying principle for these experts reembraced by the LP.

I could be upset about it, but I’ll do what I tend to do, and leave.

When it comes to voting, I’ll do what I have been doing my entire adult life — vote against the worst candidate. For the past tew election cycles, that’s normally been the Libertarian. I’m less convinced that that’ll be the case in 2024. Good job. You broke it, you bought it.

Thirty

Wrap Up

So this is the last one. We’ll see how much more I have until the end of the year. I do have some Notes of a Goon writing to do, but I really can feel finished.

Christmas is going to be unsettled, just like Thanksgiving.

Whatever. Keep plugging along until I have to make a change.

Lots of thoughts listening to Mean Age Daydream this morning, as well as some of the Thanksgiving podcasts. The guest was a comic who wrote, and was pitching a book on “woke” comedy.

One of the things he had was following a rape victim on an open mic…and how that really killed his act for the night.

Another was following a disabled comic.

Going through my inventory, I really don’t fit nicely into a lot of the categories of concern. (Which sounds a lot like one of Fauci’s comebacks to Rand Paul about gain-of-funciton research being conducted in Wuhan; No, Senator, we weren’t conducting gain-of-function of concern….)

So what the hell am I? Disabled? Yep. Rich? Nope. White? Not completely, and that was a bit of an issue for my father growing up in the deep South in the 1960s. Product of an affluent school? Fuck no. I grew up all over the place, and really don’t have anywhere I consider “home.”

I could ask what considerations I should have, etc.

But I don’t care. Leave me alone, and don’t try to make me live the way you think I should.

There was a radio host to whom I used to listen (when he was still on the air…) who had a video message a couple of days ago that was targeting the sorts of things people think are important today. His message? “So what.”

I agree, of course, but that also makes me out-of-place today. But that comes with being a recovering radio guy, I guess.

I’ve written every day in November, now, for thirteen straight years.

So what?

Because it’s what I fucking wanted to do.

Twenty-nine

What are you most proud of this year? (Flashback to 2015)

In the 2015 entry, I wrote a lot about what was going on with the medical issues I was having.

It’s pretty incredible how different things are this year.

I think, maybe, I could really write to the improvements that started last year both physically, and especially mentally.

I thought I’d written about something very simple, going to the dentist for a cleaning, where I felt halfway like a “normal” person. I woke up, took a cab to the dentist, got my teeth cleaned, and came home. Like a somewhat regular person.

I didn’t have the sense of panic I’d had for years about being embarrassed publicly by something my body did. I wasn’t going to puke. I wasn’t going to pass out. I wasn’t going to shit my pants. I went, let the hygienist do what she needed to do, talked to the dentist, came home, then waited the requisite hour until I could have coffee.

This is not the sort of thing that many people can relate to, but it was my life for the past almost thirty years.

With that, I’d planned to travel later this year. As a test run, I went down to visit my mother. I rode the train to the Gulf Coast by myself. I flew back to DCA with a scared little dog.

Then I repeated the trip earlier this month.

Yes, that trip was largely flavored by my slide off the bench at the train station to start. (And, yes, I still have bruises, but the problems I was having down there have calmed down, at least.)

The trip for December was cancelled, which is probably okay. I didn’t go through the rigmarole to get my passport renewed.

But that’s okay. Settling in to Fitter Happier, maybe.

I’m ready to cut my hair. I’m ready to shave off the growth around my mouth. (Though I’m slightly curious about whether these few hairs are, in fact, gray, or if they’re just blonde…..I think I’ve mentioned before that if there’s a natural hair color, it grows out of my face…)

Professionally, again, it’s the sense of completion. When the thing I’m on finally ends, I’ll have a decision to make, but I really don’t think there’s a lot of point of trying to keep things the way they are, even if it’s going to cost people their jobs. The system I’m supporting has a purpose, and that isn’t to make me a lot of money. So wrap up tomorrow. And another year down.

And maybe we’ll get to some real winter weather. Just some freezing after the rain ends today.

And the US beat the Islamic Republic in the World Cup.

I wish I didn’t have more work to do tonight, but time to find dinner.

Twenty-eight

Is there someone you were close to at one point in time, that you can no longer stand to be around? (From 2020…)

My response back then was:

Absolutely. Her. Him. Her. No ill-will towards him. Well, I still talk to her sometimes. Him, too. *shrug*

You know, I think some of those was the people who had joined the Branch Covidians.

But, no, I haven’t changed much of any of those takes. At the same time, I really can’t remember exactly who I was thinking about in any of those.

I don’t know, really, however, whether I can really hold many grudges at this point. I just don’t have the energy.

I was listening to Finding Freedom this morning, and the interviewee was talking about being involved with UNICOR. (I’ll spare you searching the fine web; Wiki)

But I don’t know that there’s anyone to whom I’m really refusing to speak. Even in the hellscape that are many social media platforms, I rarely just cut off people I don’t know. Maybe that’s top of mind after a few weird blocks on Twitter; who knoes?

But I guess that sometimes there’s rash reactions that aren’t forever-justified.

So…?

Yesterday I referenced what I wrote years ago, “You Can Leave.” Still very much in that mindset. And if you circle back, be at least civil.

But very few of the connections broken I’m missing. I think that might be a part of my upbringing. Listening to a few programs leading up to Thanksgiving, I was hearing people talk about Thanksgivings with difficult family members.

I think I can count on one hand the number of times we traveled to see family for Thanksgiving. There were a couple of times we went to see my parents’ friends, but it was really not something where we’d head away for the holiday. Drunk Uncle has no relevance to me.

Maybe that’s not really surprising; I think I only saw my dad drunk once, and that was him with my godfather around my brother’s wedding. They polished off a bottle of gin, but weren’t upset/mean.

A couple more days; I have to go do work.