I Like Technology, But…

…The more that tech tries to do more, the more likely it is to fail.

Think about it. A relatively simple technology, such as a Raspberry Pi (can be assembled with cheap plug & play elements), still fails at times. I had to return my first Pi4, as it would crash when stressed. When I re-ordered the replacement, I paid a few extra bucks to add more working memory. Don’t know whether that was the failure point, but one thing you will never regret is more memory on a high-tech component.

The linked article points out the many places where a ‘robot worker’ simply won’t be able to handle the job. Outside of the factory floor, the world is non-standard, and navigating that takes either a lot of robot ‘smarts’, or a human, who is uniquely capable of improvising in new circumstances – what we call learning.

So, men and women need to work on shoring up their Strong Suit – their adaptability and capability for learning new things, which doesn’t diminish as quickly as you might expect. We’re really good about learning new physical skills, and those skills that are an extension of previous learning.

I’m almost 70. In the last 10 years, I’ve learned:

  • The layout of a new city, including the ability to get to places without GPS assistance.
  • How to put a computer together, install software, and manage computer tasks, using a Raspberry Pi and Linux. Still learning, with the help of a Linux-savvy brother, and internet assistance (thank you, unseen Linux community!).
  • How to get a radio license, upgrade to long-distance communication, operate a handheld radio, GMRS, and weather spotting.
  • Operation of a new sewing machine – far more high-tech than my previous, non-electronic machine (45 years old).
  • How to operate a Smartboard (2 different types), virtual conferencing, use of online class management system, and various science data collection equipment.
  • Qualified for my insurance license, specialized certification in Health Care insurances, and yearly re-certification of different insurance lines.

That’s just a short summary. My next project will be upgrading my gardening skills, drying some of the harvest, and canning most of the rest. None of which I’ve done by myself. Also, shifting to making bakery products – bread, muffins, biscuits, pies, cakes, and other baking output, with the goal of deleting the need for grocery runs.

My husband is interested in learning beekeeping. He is 73.

We are not unique. What skills we haven’t the time or interest to acquire, we can exchange money/barter for. We are not hopeless or helpless, in the face of a hostile government or corporate structure.

We can always chose to go Galt.

So, no, humans will NOT be replaced. Not anytime soon.

These Are Not the Actions of a Victorious Government

VoxDay has a point – why the worry about dissident thought/speech? Why are they cracking down, harder and harder?

Well, we KNOW why. It’s because the Reality is not the Leftist Message.

They are working overtime on forcing the Leftist ‘Pravda’ to be the ONLY permitted ‘Truth’. So, that does mean that we are winning Hearts and Minds.

Keep pushing. Keep that message in distribution:

  • By links to the original messages.
  • By emails/texts to your contacts.
  • By printing it out and stealthily placing it in communal places – coffee shops, bulletin boards, tables at work in the break room, at church, handing it out on the streets, if necessary.
  • Using the cheap DVDs/USB drives/other portable means to pass the messages along to others. What’s known as Sneakernet. Use door-to-door drop-offs at trusted neighbors/network contacts.
  • Use radio-nets – utilizing FRS, for which NO license is required, to move that message OUT. Set a changing channel, set a privacy code, and let ‘er rip. READ the message to a needy world.

When they are THAT afraid, it’s time to push back.

If This is True, Then Who Will Triumph?

Short Answer – Not Us

The Sultan Knish – Daniel Greenfield – has an essay that contrasts cultures by type, and seems to say that we are on the way out.

Civilizations are divided into three types:

  • Barbarian
  • Vigorous
  • Decadent

By his standards, we have moved beyond the Vigorous type, and ended up in the Decadent control type. By those definitions, he seems to see little but chaos and destruction of the remaining remnants of the Vigorous culture, until they are overwhelmed by the Barbarians again.

The question, for me, is who those Barbarians will be?

China doesn’t count as Barbarian – instead, they are more of a Technocratic and Decadent civilization.

The Euros? Pure Decadence.

Russia? Despite some elements of Barbarism, their society mostly functions as Decadent. They are more defensive of their territory than expansive.

Which leaves nearby Barbarians:

  • Blacks who already function in Barbarian mode (not all, or even most, of the group). This would be the gangs, who have no connections to any monetary part of The System, other than raiding it/stealing from it, and otherwise working around the fringes. They have been coddled/tolerated and used to keep others who might challenge State control powerless.
  • Foreigners
    • Mostly Hispanic – Mexican criminals near the border, immigrants who could be ‘persuaded’ to join, and home-grown gangs
    • Mid-East peoples, who already exist on the fringes of American life. They enforce marriages with other Tribal members, often importing brides/grooms into America. They run various scams (a little-acknowledged scam that is nearly all theirs is the various food stamp types, run by the small storeowners, who operate their stores as an employment agency for their non-citizen relatives, who provide cheap labor).
    • Indians/Pakistanis – one side effect of importing doctors and other medical people is that they bring in their business values. Scamming the government/other companies is not unknown in India, but held in check by the sure retribution of other Tribal groups. In America, it’s Open Season, hence the many Medicare/Medicaid scams, the pill mills, and other schemes that drain our Decadent Federal system.
  • And, lest I be misunderstood, the substantial number of White people who have adopted the culture of the underclass. The division that separates them is largely Christianity, but also could be described as Morality. That White guy who is living off the system, and taking no action to raise his own children right? He’s one of them. That guy who is wallowing in drug/alcohol addiction? Yep. That woman who is living off public money, raising kids with different (absent) fathers, and not making any efforts to change that? Yes. Not all poor people are Barbarians. But, all who won’t put the effort in to take care of their own self, without assistance/scams/crime, are.
    • If you are disabled, you’re not a automatically a Barbarian, despite your dependency on public assistance. But, you need to work – HARD – to keep from falling into that classification.

So, is there any hope that we could reclaim our country, and re-install a Vigorous Civilization?

Not a chance.

At this point, the best-case scenario is for families to circle the wagons, school/train their own children, and link up with others of the same mind outside of the cities. Let the cities (and the funding Federal Government) destroy themselves.

If your region/location is defensible, you MIGHT survive. If not, you will join the others who resisted the Barbarian Hordes. My son is planning a move, from the outer fringes of the city he lives in, to a location that provides the opportunity to buy some land, along with that house. By moving sooner, rather than later, he has time to network locally, lay in supplies, and outlast The Troubles.

It won’t come quickly – at first. Expect the Decadent government to throw out cash to calm the coming storm. That gives us some time.

But, not a lot. Don’t waste it trying to prop up a dying system.

The Believable Hero

     Recently, the C.S.O. and I have been enjoying John Nettles’s old Bergerac series. Nettles’s intrepid detective Jim Bergerac, a sergeant in Jersey’s Bureau des Etranges, is a classical hero figure. He gets into any number of personal scrapes, including with his superior, his ex-wife, a succession of ladyfriends, and the rich elite of that island, but resolutely retains his dedication to the law. A few of those dramas feature as an auxiliary quasi-protagonist the character of “Ice Maiden” Philippa Vale, a highly accomplished jewel thief portrayed by the beautiful Liza Goddard. Miss Vale is a figure of a sort that’s become common in contemporary fiction: the severely ethically compromised protagonist we call an antihero.

     The Philippa Vale character, and how she interacts with Jim Bergerac, got me thinking about heroes yet again. These days, antiheroes handily outnumber classical heroes. We even find them partnering with classical heroes, as in the dramas cited above. In part, that’s because we can see a bit of ourselves in them, even if we lack the skills to make a living as second-story men. But in equal or greater measure, it’s because of our cynicism.

     Ours is a cynical age. The cynic is unwilling to believe that a man’s motivations can be entirely high-minded. In this, he is correct; rare is the man who acts exclusively from the demands of ethical principles. We are too conscious of our personal interests and the uncertainties of the future ever to dismiss them completely from our thoughts. Perhaps it was always that way, though the fictions of earlier eras tend to speak otherwise.

     Our cynicism makes the construction of a believable hero an unusual challenge. After all, for your hero to be believable, the reader must be able to imagine that he could exist. More, he must be able to believe that your hero, or someone very much like him, might exist—perhaps even be somewhere nearby. The superhero, who’s defined to possess powers no real man could command, excludes that possibility…but so does the man who’s motivated solely by the dictates of right and wrong.

     A story whose hero is outside the bounds of plausibility demands much more “willing suspension of disbelief” from its reader than it would if its hero were believable in the above sense. That’s not a fatal problem if you’re willing to position your tale in one of the speculative genres. The contemporary vogue for superheroes in fiction testifies to the existence of readers ready to accept and enjoy such tales. But the fuzzy gray zone of stories that tease reality’s limitations along their edges without utterly dismissing their constraints can also be a fascinating place to explore.

     We’re not quite in the realm of magical realism here, though we’re sidling up to it. What I have in mind is a figure who stands apart but does not burst through the envelope of believable human nature. He must be somewhat larger than life in one or two senses, but comfortably well situated within what we know of Mankind in all the others.

     It’s not easy to keep your hero dancing along the border that separates the world of men who could (and do) exist from the realms of impossibility. It takes effort and characterological adroitness. The cynical reader will be ever alert for steps that take your hero across the line.

     There are a few such heroes in contemporary fiction. F. Paul Wilson’s “Repairman Jack” stories portray one. Lee Child’s “Jack Reacher” novels depict another. Stephen King shows us one in Needful Things. But they’re uncommon. The typical writer either stays well within the “cynical zone,” or goes “full superhero,” or adopts the deplorable “antihero” template that currently dominates mainstream fiction.

     I like tales of barely-believable heroes. One kind I’ve attempted to depict is much smarter or more potent than those around him, but remains within the bounds of believable human nature (and the laws of physics). Another is a largely ordinary fellow physically and mentally, but far more committed to his conception of right and wrong than the common run of Mankind. He would never walk away from an injustice muttering that “it’s not my problem,” or excuse a dishonesty on the grounds that “everybody does it.” But both varieties are a severe challenge to keep believable.

     Whichever kind of hero you prefer to write about, the important thing is to keep them heroic: men who’ll dare greatly and risk considerably in pursuing their visions of justice. Remember always that drama arises only from situations in which men must accept hardship and risk to pursue an ethically lofty goal. A man who makes that bargain and sticks to it is a hero, even if he must fight his way past a mountain of personal inhibitions and threats to what he values. Indeed, it’s the need to surmount such fears and inhibitions that makes a hero believable to the contemporary cynic. If you can make your hero believable to the cynic, you might even relieve him of part of his burden of cynicism, at least for the duration of your novel. And cynics’ money spends just as readily as that of the starry-eyed worshippers of steely-eyed superheroes who never sway from the demands of justice, I assure you!

Here we go again.

Insert F bomb after “Here we.”

[Secretary of State nominee Antony] Blinken displayed his hubris a few minutes later when he said, “The door should remain open” for Georgia to join NATO under the justification of curbing Russian aggression.

* * * *

Blinken’s framing of the issue exposes his disingenuous approach. Russian aggression is a term used by Washington insiders to describe a Russian reaction to western aggression. Blinken knows that the 2008 war between Russia and Georgia was not Russian aggression, he calls it that because it suits his agenda and the American press is dependably ignorant enough to not ask questions.

In the 2008 war, Georgia was the aggressor against the South Ossetians . . . .[1]

This is an excellent article. The real money quote from it is:

War should be the last resort to defending America’s people and it’s homeland from foreign invasion; it should not be the last resort to enforcing America’s utopian vision on the world . . . .[2]

That utopian vision is what winds me up on any day of the week between Monday and Sunday. Can’t we just have a foreign policy run by people like Wally in “My Dinner with Andre“? (Link to full movie.) He was majorly into a simple, uncomplicated life where just a cup of coffee in the morning was something to be savored.

It’s a great movie let it be said. The contrast between the two characters is delicious to anyone who happens to have noticed the yawning gulf between our Beautiful People and the rest of us peasants. Years ago when I first watched it the movie was merely a delightful personality study contrasting dreamy stupidity and intelligent pragmatism. Now dreamy stupidity governs the whole shootin’ match.

Notes
[1] “Former Navy SEAL: The Miseducation Of Antony Blinken.” By Kenny MacDonald, ZeroHedge, 1/29/21 (emphasis removed).
[2] Id.

Pointed question.

If you thought 2020 was off the hook, how do you like 2021 so far?[1]

What I’m getting from this Gamestop oopsie is that it’s as Mr. Jeftovic says: “a generalized revolt against financial repression and asymmetric rulesets (a.k.a ‘rules are for thee, but not for me’).” I don’t understand how the day trading peasants got together to drive the Gamestop stock price high but it’s clear that the in crowd rallied to prevent the horrific result that some dirtbag, scum-sucking, bottom-feading, manipulative hedgefund got to drown in its own insider cleverness.

So what isn’t patently lunatic is fixed. And The Great Reset is a benign course correction for which we can all be grateful.

Jeftovic’s article also sheds light light on the manipulated nature of the silver market. I can’t add any insights to that other than my plebian observation that no matter where you look America closely resembles the opening scenes of Ingmar Bergman’s movie “The Seventh Seal.” Or what could be seen of that Other Place when Ned Wilcox of Stephen King’s novel From a Buick 8 opened the trunk of that strange car impounded in the highway patrol garage.

Who are these swine who decide what we can do, think, read, and say and change the rules at will?

An aside: King’s book was a pleasure to read for its portrayal of the people working at that Highway Patrol post as kind-hearted, normal people. Refreshing in retrospect after years of lies about the portrayal of all of our cops as psychopaths and our institutions as irredeemably rotten.

Notes
[1] “Could #WallStreetBets Be The Early Innings Of A Financial Arab Spring?” By Mark Jeftovic, ZeroHedge, 1/29/21.

What Trump was up against.

I have been dismayed by Trump’s failures to act on various issues but his actions or failures to act have to be understood in the light of the immense and scurrilous attacks on him by the the Department of Justice and key national security organs of the American government:

For more than two years, the United States and the world have had two competing narratives: that an elected president of the United States was a Russian agent whom the Kremlin helped elect; and its rival narrative that senior officials of the Justice Department, FBI, CIA, and other national intelligence organizations had repeatedly lied under oath, misinformed federal officials, and meddled in partisan political matters illegally and unconstitutionally and had effectively tried to influence the outcome of a presidential election, and then undo its result by falsely propagating the first narrative. It is now obvious and indisputable that the second narrative is the correct one.[1]

Notes
[1] “‘The greatest constitutional crisis since the Civil War’: Conrad Black on how American institutions plotted and schemed in the 2016 election – then blamed Russia.” By Conrad Black, Daily Mail, 2/23/19.

Ya’ Know, That Kid Has a Way With Words

He’s no Hemingway (I read his book a while back. Not a Deep book, but really funny in his take on the Deep State and Their Official Cronies).

But, Donald Trump, Jr. either has a terrific staff person to write these tweets, or he’s got a true gift. And, since the tone is pretty consistent, I’m going out on a limb, and saying this is him (perhaps with an assist, but still largely him).

@DonaldJTrumpJr

Hedge funders should really just “Learn To Code” or to “install solar panels”
Am I doing this right??? I’m told those are the rules.

@DonaldJTrumpJr

Any Republican in Washington DC worth a damn should be calling for an immediate investigation into Robinhood and Citadel.

And while they’rere at it, subpoena Janet Yellen; lets find out if there was pressure coming from the Biden Admin to protect their cronies on Wall Streeet!!

@DonaldJTrumpJr

It took less than a day for big tech, big government and the corporate media to spring into action and begin colluding to protect their hedge fund buddies on Wall Street. This is what a rigged system looks like, folks!

@DonaldJTrumpJr

I wish the SEC had as much of an issue with Insider Trading as they seem to have with Outsider Trading.

Saturday Update: Enjoy these Powerline Memes – guarantee you will LOL at many.

The Real Plague

     New York State has suffered badly under the House of Cuomo. Emperor Mario was disastrous. I was glad to see him go even if his replacement was a centrist wimp. But Mario’s son Andrew is deadly and doesn’t care who knows it:

     What’s that you say, Andrew? It sounded a lot like this:

     And lest we forget, New York sent her, a Democrat carpetbagger with no attachments to our state other than a very recently purchased house in Chappaqua, to the United States Senate.

     How do people with that little conscience get elected to high positions in government? Mind you, Andrew Cuomo has no achievements outside of politics. In that regard, he’s practically the archetype of the left-wing politician. (Cf. Joe Biden, Barack Obama, Bill Clinton.) But he managed to become first the state’s Attorney-General, then its Governor – and he’s left a trail of destruction that may never be corrected.

     How does such a thing happen? Is there no one in the Right who can beat these left-wing monsters in a New York election? Are our Boards of Election too corrupt for a Republican – and a New York Republican is more a centrist than a conservative – to beat a conscienceless, massively incompetent Democrat?

     A great part of our problem is New York City. The Giuliani years, when the city experienced a renaissance that brought it back to vitality and livability, are a memory. The city is now entirely controlled by wealthy Leftists who pander shamelessly to the city’s municipal unions and its large indigent and minority populations – and the city dominates the state politically. Recent movements to break New York into three or more states are motivated almost exclusively by a desire to get the rest of us out from under the city’s hobnailed boot.

     But those initiatives, like the similar ones advanced in California, have a snowball’s chance in hell of being treated seriously. Not only would they deprive Albany of serfs to mulct; they would dilute Democrat power in the United States Senate and the Electoral College. Can’t have that.

     Fortunately, despite Cuomo’s high-handed, completely unjustified “mandates,” New York State has weathered the Chinese Lung Rot reasonably well. We’ve acquired a high degree of herd immunity and are on the way to shrugging the Kung Flu off completely. What we seem unable to become immune to, or to vaccinate against, is the really deadly plague, the plague that’s turning the state into a disaster even lifelong New Yorkers are fleeing in increasing numbers: the plague of Democrat totalitarians who succeed one another ad infinitam in the corridors of power. For that disease, there is no relief in sight.

Tipping Points Journal

     Many have asked, as America slides down the generously Vaselined slope toward totalitarianism, just “where the tipping point is.” That is: What incursion on Americans’ rights would – or will – provoke actual armed insurrection aimed at reestablishing Constitutionally limited government?

     Time was, the most widely agreed such point was a major incursion against freedom of speech. Well, the Usurpers have successfully subcontracted that – with the bonus that their private-sector partners are also helping to destroy unapproved competitors – and no one has yet taken the musket down from the mantel. So maybe freedom of speech was “over-valued.”

     Another much hyped tipping point was blatantly political prosecutions. Well, we’ve already had a couple of those, including Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, the fellow whose YouTube video was deceitfully blamed for the Benghazi attack on American installations there, and more recently Brandon Straka of WalkAway. I just went out on my front porch, and I don’t see the militia forming up. Maybe that one was oversold, as well.

     Then there are our Second Amendment rights. That sounded uber-plausible. After all, disarming us would end our possibility of resistance to tyranny for all time. But hark! What have we here?



     Yes, it’s from the terminally insane Sheila Jackson Lee. No, it’s not law yet. Does it have a chance of passage? Who knows? But if both Houses of Congress pass it – and given the spinelessness of the Republican caucuses, that’s not impossible – the Usurper-in-Chief will sign it. What then, America? Would that be a sufficient tipping point?

     I’m not placing any bets. We’ve become too sheeplike, too reflexively compliant, for me to wager with confidence that any imposition of unwarranted authority would awaken us. Far easier just to change the channel and natter about what the Kardashians have been doing lately.

     Things are, to say the least, not good.

#

     We are living through a time I never thought I would see. Blatantly stolen elections. Blatantly unConstitutional government. Blatant law-enforcement indifference to Leftists rioting in the streets. Blatant attempts to criminalize dissent from the Usurper agenda. The blatant garrisoning of the nation’s capital. And private citizens have accepted all of it, as if it were of neither present nor future significance. “Emergency! Everybody to get from street!”

     This is not American. If we accept such subjugation, we are not worthy to be called Americans.

     The violent rioters who’ve desecrated our cities should have already faced massed water cannons and fusillades of rubber bullets, at the very least. But upon whom have the attentions of law enforcement fallen? It’s not the people and organizations rioting and looting in the streets of Minneapolis or Portland. Dozens of federal legislators should have already been ejected from Congress for the violation of their oaths to abide by the Constitution of the United States. Yet upon whom are the media pouring their venom? It’s not the Leftists who’ve dismissed all Constitutional constraints, have demanded that President Trump be tried for murder, and have called for “re-education camps” for conservatives and Republican partisans.

     It’s possible that America has passed a point of no return and can no longer be saved. It’s possible that complete subjugation is our future. But it’s also possible that we could reverse our current course with sufficiently forthright action. Is any such action forthcoming? That’s the question of the hour…and at the moment, the answer seems to be negative.

     Many Americans are in denial. But covering your eyes as a carnivore advances on you won’t spare you from his claws and teeth. Many others are focused narrowly upon protecting themselves, their loved ones, and their own interests. Martin Niemoller could tell them a few things. So could Dietrich Bonhoeffer.

     The time to act is now…if it hasn’t passed by already.

Eh, It’s a More Interesting Use of My Time Than Working

I refer to sitting in front of my laptop, endlessly following threads of discussion, leaping from link to link.

But, in the process, you do sometimes find gems:

3:55 pm – I finally got off my butt, and got to work. I’m posting this, and will see if I can stay off the Net for a while.

Pearls of expression.

For liberal democracies are built on the premise that human values and interests are unavoidably and perpetually in conflict with one another. The solution to these conflicts is not to grant total victory to one side or another, but to accept a system of government and civil society that allows pluralism to flourish within a common culture and single legal framework.”

~ Nick Timothy quoted in “‘Joe Biden’s call for unity is a sham’ The Telegraph.”  By Patrick Lang, Sic Semper Tyrannis, 1/28/21.

Coded Message

Greeted this morning by quite an awakener.

Health care worker dies after second dose of COVID vaccine, investigations underway

Here, with a little emphasis added, is what suggests a coded message may be present.

“We are not blaming any pharmaceutical company,” said Rochelle Zook, a resident of Orange. “My husband loved what he did. He worked in hospitals for 36 1/2 years. He believed in vaccines. I’m sure he would take that vaccine again, and he’d want the public to take it.

“But when someone gets symptoms 2 1/2 hours after a vaccine, that’s a reaction. What else could have happened? We would like the public to know what happened to Tim, so he didn’t die in vain. Severe reactions are rare. In reality, COVID is a much more deadly force than reactions from the potential vaccine itself.

“The message is, be safe, take the vaccine — but the officials need to do more research. We need to know the cause. The vaccines need to be as safe as possible. Every life matters.”

Any person who has developed a deep sense of skepticism is apt to have spotted the actual message was buried in the middle of paragraph 2. We would like the public to know what happened to Tim, so he didn’t die in vain. The encoding was likely added just so this portion might appear along with the sad news. Whatever it takes to get it published.

Any who do not wish to consider this are free to go back to sleep.

How Do I Detest WordPress? Let Me Count The Ways…

Approximately 538 trillion people, aware that I was relocating from Blogger, have:

  1. Exhorted me to use WordPress;
  2. Assured me that “You’re going to love it.”

That group includes (of course) Mike Hendrix, whose assistance in creating this blog was invaluable. You could say Mike is a WordPress fan. He assumed that I would take to it as he has. “You’re going to love WordPress, Fran!” he assured me…repeatedly. He was, let us say, slightly over-optimistic.

There is an imperative principle in user-oriented software design that the folks responsible for this…system should have tattooed on their eyelids — the inside surfaces of their eyelids:

Commonplace things should be simple to do.

A system billed as user-oriented, but which makes commonplace operations difficult or obscure, is doing it wrong. There is no imaginable excuse. Yet that appears to be the WordPress milieu.

Take the sidebar foofaurauw I’ve been going through. I wanted a three-column layout, to balance the blog’s appearance and limit the lengths of the sidebars. The Graphene theme offers that option, and I was at first happy with it. But many users have reported overlap problems with that layout: problems I cannot reproduce, much less eliminate. So I had to dump it and revert to two columns.

Here’s another thing: Inserting an image inline into a post. That operation is deeply hidden within some very obscure controls. It took me nearly half an hour to figure it out — and I’m not sure I’m able to reproduce what I did.

Most offensive to this retired software engineer: WordPress changes my code. I prefer to edit with the HTML tags and elements visible before me. Yet no sooner have I pasted a post into the WordPress editor than my tags start to change! Paragraph and line-break tags, in particular, appear and disappear. Inter-paragraph spacing is difficult to control. This is the Sin of Sins. All by itself, it suffices to condemn WordPress.

Now, I accept that as a new WordPress user, I should expect to face a learning curve. But it’s unacceptable that there should be so little online help available, and that the bulk of it should be so obscure. Indeed, some of it is flat-out wrong: either it refers to controls that aren’t available, or it depicts them wholly differently from the actual controls.

Would anyone knowledgeable in the ways of WordPress 5.6 care to point me toward reference materials I can trust? Something that would help to quell this impulse to look up the designers and mail them a parcel full of Ebola virus?

My next challenge is to figure out how to import the backup from my Blogger site into WordPress. There’s a size limit of 64 Megabytes…and my backup file is over 80 Megabytes. Any Gentle Readers know how to go about this? Absent such assistance, I’m likely to be drunk before noon.

“Is It Safe?”

     Suffice it to say that opinions vary. But the question reposes upon a fallacy: that safe has a specific, objective, and universally agreed meaning. It does not.


There are no safe substances.
There are no safe activities.
There are no safe places.
Only degrees of risk…
Some of which are incalculable.

     I could go into a long explanation of why this is so. I shan’t; it’s too early in the morning for such discourses. Also, unless you know a lot more physics, chemistry, and strength of materials than the average Gentle Reader, it would fail to impress you. So take my word for it.

     Contemporary Americans are fanatics about safety. They exert themselves in a quest for absolute safety – sometimes they call it “security” – without even knowing what they mean by it. The entire Wuhan Virus / Chinese Crud / Kung Flu fear-porn panic is about that and nothing else. That’s what makes it a turbocharged absurdity.

     Consider this story:

     Washington: The US Department of Homeland Security declared a nationwide terrorism alert Wednesday, citing the potential threat from domestic anti-government extremists opposed to Joe Biden as president.

     “Information suggests that some ideologically-motivated violent extremists with objections to the exercise of governmental authority and the presidential transition, as well as other perceived grievances fueled by false narratives, could continue to mobilize to incite or commit violence,” the department said.

     The National Terrorism Advisory System Bulletin said a heightened threat of attack “will persist in the weeks following the successful presidential inauguration,” which took place on January 20.

     “DHS does not have any information to indicate a specific, credible plot,” it said.

     Leave aside that the Usurpers fear to be dethroned from the positions they so blatantly stole. Leave aside the “false narratives” BS – and with all the eyewitnesses who’ve testified under oath to the frauds they saw, you may be perfectly certain that it is BS – and the suggestions that the Right is filled with “ideologically motivated extremists.” Just contrast the tone of the first three paragraphs above with the fourth and most telling one:

     “DHS does not have any information to indicate a specific, credible plot,” it said.

     The Usurpers, fear-mongers without equal, propagandized the United States into a state of hysteria we never even approached in wartime…and it’s rebounded on them. Now they’re the ones who are afraid. Yet they can’t even point to a credible threat!

     In part, it’s because they know what they deserve. But it’s unlikely to be what they’ll get. Given their smashing success at taking control of the nation’s electoral mechanisms, it’s even unlikely that their Reign of Terror will get them unseated electorally.

     But fear is often useful. Their fear can be useful to us.

     In the days leading up to the Biden inaugural, the nation’s capital has been turned into an occupied military zone like Baghdad. Armed troops authorized to use lethal force are manning checkpoints to enter and leave downtown Washington, D.C. Green Zone and Red Zone perimeters have been established. Several bridges into the city from neighboring Virginia are scheduled to be closed next week for the inaugural.

     The more fearful a regime becomes of its subjects, the less control it has. It must separate itself from those peons, for its own safety’s sake. Political power grows more difficult to wield as the distance increases between ruler and subject.

     People have been speculating about what might touch off a true insurrection:

     Some ‘well known’ talking head goes out to some regional disaster, and tries walking around in ankle deep water again, and gets decapitated live on TV by a .338 Lapua Magnum hollow-point, along with his whole crew….

     Or someone seals the doors to a well-known senator’s exclusive house at oh-dark early, and then throws copious amounts of Molotovs through the windows, burning them alive….

     Then there’s always just the “random walks up to someone and gets shot in the face” completely randomly…like in NYC it happens all the time Even with security cameras, dude’ll be walking down the street casually, and all-of-a-sudden, another guy walking towards him whips out a gat, and does a 3 second mag dump, and is never found or caught.

     Those possibilities might strike you and me as farfetched, but to the fear-possessed Usurpers, they appear far more likely. It’s part of why they’re pushing for America to become the total-surveillance society that was the unachievable ideal of Communist East Germany:

     Wolfgang Schmidt was seated in Berlin’s 1,200-foot-high TV tower, one of the few remaining landmarks left from the former East Germany. Peering out over the city that lived in fear when the communist party ruled it, he pondered the magnitude of domestic spying in the United States under the Obama administration. A smile spread across his face.

     “You know, for us, this would have been a dream come true,” he said, recalling the days when he was a lieutenant colonel in the defunct communist country’s secret police, the Stasi.

     In those days, his department was limited to tapping 40 phones at a time, he recalled. Decide to spy on a new victim and an old one had to be dropped, because of a lack of equipment. He finds breathtaking the idea that the U.S. government receives daily reports on the cellphone usage of millions of Americans and can monitor the Internet traffic of millions more.

     “So much information, on so many people,” he said.

     This is actually good news. The Usurpers are drowning in data. No power on Earth could sift through it swiftly enough to make it useful. Yes, they try, but a genuine threat to them could evade detection by a wide variety of methods. There are codes, ciphers, and concealment techniques that fiercely resist adverse analysis. Look into “one-time pads” and “steganography.”

     Let the Usurpers be the fearful ones. The rest of us should relax a bit – yes, about the Chinese Virus, but about many other things as well. For the title question of this piece will always evoke contrasting responses:

     But also:

Why I am Ramping Up my Prep

It’s not IF the electric/electronics grid will go down – it’s WHEN.

On one hand, this SHOULD kill the Left as a viable party.

But, let’s be serious – the Left will manage to find a way to blame US for it happening.

If you don’t already:

And, last – Remember.

This Just MIGHT Persuade the Border States…

…That they made a hell of a mistake letting Biden steal the election.

Short-term? Patriots would be advised against coming to DC again, to protest. Biden’s people are just LOOKING for an excuse to shed blood. Tulsi Gabbard is warning of this already, and she is not wrong. (We need to covertly court her – she is both electable, and reachable – well, a hell of a lot better than a lot of the RINOs).

Rather, work locally:

  • Border communities, work with the Sheriff’s departments to become deputized, and plan on putting in some volunteer hours (also, start raising money to fund the department – a small amount will go a long way, locally).
  • At the state level, get assistance from the National Guard (in many of those states, the Guard has already been recalled from Washington).
  • Pass laws against hiring illegals. Make it a felony conviction to repeat that offense.
  • Get familiar with the RICO laws, and consider taking the factories or other facilities of those guilty of employment of illegals – it could be a presumptive attack.
  • Get legislators on board with state laws against employers putting those without E-Check-type verification to work – put HARSH penalties in the form of fines, and felonies for those doing the hiring. Make them have to pony up for lawyers. Authorize the deputies to raid the places doing this, and shut them down for the day.
  • Name them and shame them – put the photos of the offenders – those at the executive and board level – into the media. Kick them off the boards of charities, take away their wives’ little perks socially, and bring it home to them.
  • Organize local protests of social events that have those people at them. Make them look like the un-American scum they are. The Left made this a fair tactic – go Alinsky on them.

This next part is going to be difficult. It’s NOT to openly call for rebellion/insurrection, but to point out the abuses that the government is committing.

We have to forthrightly raise our voices at the wrongs, while refraining from any hint of violence. Let our listeners/readers draw their own conclusions.

It’s a fence that we walk – both to plainly point out the Constitutional abuses, assaults against Americans, and Leftist-approved violations of the human spirit.

While, at the same time, preparing for the worst case scenario.

We are under siege. At the same time, we have to act (openly) as though we are not. We have to resist the abuses, while NOT giving them an excuse to commit slaughter upon Americans.

I don’t know how to keep on that edge. It’s likely that this will turn kinetic at some point – I hope not. I’d like to think that even the Leftist-affiliated Democrats will come to their senses before that point.

But, while I’m hopeful, I’m not confident.

Be a (formerly known as) Boy Scout – Be Prepared. Also, thrifty, loyal, reverent, and all that other stuff.

This is troubling – Look, I realize that the Ughurs are being targeted for abuse by the Chinese. But, the place for them is a MUSLIM country, not the United States. We have our own problems, and don’t need an influx of more people from foreign cultures.

For Those Having Problems With The Left Sidebar Images

     I am having no such problem, no matter which of my four browsers (Edge, Firefox, Brave, Dissenter) I use to display the site. The problem might be on your end.

     How wide, in pixels, is your monitor? The site’s “container,” imposed on it by WordPress, is 1440 pixels wide. If your monitor is narrower than that, the problem might lie in that alone.

     As God said in his final message to His Creation:

“We apologize for the inconvenience.”

Allowances

     Power concedes nothing without demand. It never did, and it never will. Find out just what people will submit to, and you have found out the exact amount of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them; and these will continue until they have been resisted with either words or blows, or with both. – Frederick Douglass

     Earth’s population had been stabilized, about the middle of the twenty-first century, at eighteen billion. The Fertility Board, a subsection of the United Nations, made and enforced the birth control laws. For more than half a thousand years those laws had remained the same: two children to a couple, subject to the judgment of the Fertility Board. The Board decided who might be a parent how many times. The Board might award extra children to one couple, deny any children at all to another, all on the basis of desirable or undesirable genes.
     “Incredible,” said the kzin.
     “Why? Things were getting pretty tanj crowded, with eighteen billion people trapped in a primitive technology.”
     “If the Patriarchy tried to force such a law on kzinti, we would exterminate the Patriarchy for its insolence.”

     [Larry Niven, Ringworld]

     What we’ve allowed governments to get away with is a great part of our current problem. Yes, the Usurper Administration is the acme of corruption and oppression – in American terms, anyway – but it’s not as if there were no precedents.

     Parents once understood the principle involved. Disobedience once allowed creates a precedent: “You didn’t object the last time!” It’s hard enough to counter it when it’s uttered by your teenage kid. It has even more force when invoked by legislators. And the number of times we’ve allowed the federal government to go beyond its Constitutional bounds is beyond my ability to count.

     The worst of the consequences has been the mobilization of a substantial portion of the populate – the Takers and Fakers – against the Makers. Political polarization before this day was founded on differences in approach to problems we all agreed upon. Today it proceeds from differences in fundamentals: individual rights, the constraint of non-political evils, and the limits of America’s responsibilities to non-Americans.

     What’s that you say? You’re a good person? You don’t want anything that’s not yours by right? I shan’t argue. You could be right. But then, you’re a mere expository fiction, a rhetorical convenience. But hearken to this: There are a lot of not-good people out there. People who believe they can do essentially whatever they want to you, as long as the government does it for them. They’d rather not wield the guns themselves, but apart from that…

     Darleen Click’s essay on not trusting the Democrats is much on my mind this morning. Give it a look. Then have a gander at this old piece of mine and reflect on how hard it has become to trust anyone you don’t know personally. What’s their agenda? What do they want from me? are the questions uppermost in millions of Americans’ minds today. The answers are generally unpleasant, when there are answers to be had.

     Present trends continuing essentially unmodified, we are entering an era of distrust by default. To extend your trust to another, such that you will routinely rely on him in word and deed, will demand of you an unprecedented degree of personal knowledge – a degree of intimacy that would astonish our forebears. Yet it’s entirely reasonable. Dark forces are at work on him, you know. They offer him rewards for betraying your confidences. And while it’s not the case that “every man has his price,” quite a lot of people do – and it can prove to be lower than you might think.

Beware!
Beware those who promote fear.
Beware those who shout Emergency! to deny you time to think.
Beware your own weakness before the temptation to profit at another’s expense by betraying him to those who wish him harm.
Beware above all other things the impulse to evade the judgment of your conscience in the oldest and most contemptible of all evasions:

“Everyone else is doing it.”

     And allow the betrayers nothing further.

Concerning The Two Party System

     Recall this political convulsion from more than a century ago:

     [T]he Republicans, in the early 1890s, led by Ohio Republicans William McKinley and Marc Hanna, launched a shrewd campaign of reconstruction. In particular, in state after state, they ditched the prohibitionists, who were becoming an embarrassment and losing the Republicans large numbers of German Lutheran votes. Also, they modified their hostility to immigration. By the mid-1890s, the Republicans had moved rapidly toward the center, toward fuzzing over their political pietism.

     In the meanwhile, an upheaval was beginning to occur in the Democratic Party. The South, by now a one-party Democratic region, was having its own pietism transformed by the 1890s. Quiet pietists were now becoming evangelical, and Southern Protestant organizations began to call for prohibition. Then the new, sparsely settled Mountain states, many of them with silver mines, were also largely pietist. Moreover, a power vacuum, which would ordinarily have been temporary, had been created in the national Democratic Party. Poor Grover Cleveland, a hard-money laissez-faire Democrat, was blamed for the Panic of 1893, and many leading Cleveland Democrats lost their gubernatorial and senatorial posts in the 1894 elections. The Cleveland Democrats were temporarily weak, and the Southern-Mountain coalition was ready to hand. Seizing his opportunity, William Jennings Bryan and his pietist coalition seized control of the Democratic Party at the momentous convention of 1896. The Democratic Party was never to be the same again.

     The Catholics, Lutherans, and the laissez-faire Cleveland Democrats were in mortal shock. The “party of our fathers” was lost. The Republicans, who had been moderating their stance anyway, saw the opportunity of a lifetime. At the Republican convention, Rep. Henry Cabot Lodge, representing the Morgans and the pro-gold standard Boston financial interests, told McKinley and Hanna: Pledge yourself to the gold standard–the basic Cleveland economic issue—and drop your silverite and greenback tendencies, and we will all back you. Refuse, and we will support Bryan or a third party. McKinley struck the deal, and from then on, the Republicans, in 19th-century terms, were a centrist party. Their principles were now high tariffs and the gold standard, and prohibition was quietly forgotten….

     The election of 1896 inaugurated the fourth party system in America. From a third party system of closely fought, seesawing races between a pietist/statist Republican vs. a liturgical/libertarian Democratic Party, the fourth party system consisted of a majority centrist Republican party as against a minority pietist Democratic party. After a few years, the Democrats lost their pietist nature, and they too became a centrist, though usually minority party, with a moderately statist ideology scarcely distinguishable from the Republicans. So the fourth party system went until 1932.

     [Ron Paul and Lewis Lehrman, The Case For Gold]

     Yes, things were different then. But be aware, even so, that there have been dramatic political upheavals, amounting to the total transformation of partisanship in its entirety, on three occasions in American history. It can happen again, whether through the transformation of one of the “major” parties or through the emergence of a new, vital third party that commands majority sentiment in one or a few key issues, as in 1856.

     Considering that the Usurper Administration plans to use fear to keep us in subjection, how about a new party whose main slogan is:

Be Not Afraid:
Be Americans Again!

     …could create quite a stir, don’t you think?

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