Black Organization

Once more into week out. This is especially precious today since yesterday was “black friday”. I have to admit that I did issue out. Twice. Once to a non-chain restaurant here in Greater Metropolitan Arab for a family breakfast, and once to visit the Yankee government postal office – to retrieve my mail – and a small chain grocery store to procure a head of iceberg lettuce for FD SCP.

That’s it. No MalWart. No department store. In fact I e-signed an agreement not to visit MalWart. I would dearly desire to make that pledge permanent but I have to admit that there are (relatively) necessary times when MalWart must be visited. But not this weekend.

I did however, enjoy the video of the crowd behavior. Not because I enjoy violence, but I do get a certain satisfaction when stupidity is properly rewarded. I was also a bit bemused by the indication that the fellow who actually took the video was ejected. Not that I am convinced that being ejected from a MalWart isn’t an honor. But it indicates what I suspect is a contemporary organizational exercise in holding back the tide.

Based on my own observation, essentially every adult, and many children, who shop at MalWart have a cellular telephone. Their financial state seems irrelevant. Indeed, MalWart sells the things. So to a rather good first approximation everyone in MalWart has a camera and can take pictures. So how can you stop them? And what do you do when Gooey Goggles come into common use? I suspect a kerfuffle that will make the recent fisticuffs in MalWart seem trivial.

On an equally amusing note, I see [Link] has been caught pirating software. Not-a-surprise! In fact, it’s rather typical. The YA has all sorts of regulations and policies in place that mandate that all software will be legit. But the practice of pretending these regulations don’t exist is commonplace. Some of this is understandable. You can’t order a new license for Winders in the middle of combat. And this instance makes perfect sense. It’s mission software. But the logic is delicious.

Let’s see: we’re in combat and we need another copy of this software to execute a mission today. And the only customer of this software is the army. So it won’t hurt to make an illicit copy. After all, the only people who use the software are the army.

Of course, the vendor can’t complain very much because he might lose his only customer? And the army is, after all, the largest legal organization with real weapons. It’s not like selling software to a drug cartel. Of course, they usually pay their bills. Don’t want the attention. But the army doesn’t care about bad attention. They’ll just hand a scape goat and keep doing what they have been. Protecting the nation regardless of what has to be destroyed or killed.

How old is Calley now> What’s the status of My Lai?

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Lacking Flashlight

Since today is schwarz freitag it seems fitting to discuss an article [Link] I saw the other day on ordering groceries on-line. I should warn that the article is hemistercus. It only applies where it will do harm, not good.

The idea is that while one is waiting for one’s subway connection one can use one’s smartphun to order groceries that will be delivered later.(?)

Based on my (now dated) trips to large cities, never pleasant, I noted that people on the subway will do anything they can to avoid any type of social interaction with anyone else. They apply make-up, read books, abuse themselves, listen to music – until they are knifed or shot by those nearby of differing musical tastes, and eat. The whole idea of the smart phone/tablet as entertainment device is uniquely oriented to this demographic, thus punishing all those people who live not in large cities and ride not subways. Except maybe the Amish and Mennonites? Or do they just not know they’re being punished?

So perhaps using your itty bitty decadent misuse of electronics device to purchase foodstuffs is not orthogonal. But it is a bad idea. It’s MalWart and its job destruction – three for every two created, and at lower pay and worse conditions – writ cosmic. If you go to a large city, in the residential areas, you find lots of dinky small grocery stores. These are never chain businesses. They’re individual. And they are in the business of selling city dwellers, usually on their way home from work, enough groceries for tonight’s supper and tomorrow’s breakfast. And the city dwellers visit these stores every day because they don’t have room in their dinky kitchens to store more food.  And lots of people are employed running these little stores. Because they are labor intensive.

And this scheme wants to put those people out of business. To save those subway riders ten minutes. On a path they have to take anyway from the subway station to home. And eliminate their safety net by destroying those little stores on individual’s blocks. And that’s only part of the evil.

They will only implement this in the big cities. And maybe the dense suburbs. But not out in the sparse hinterland where people have to drive a whole day, getting there and back, to get to a grocery store. I live in a relatively dense area and I have to drive an hour plus to get to Nawth Alibam’s Shining City on the Hill so I can buy the groceries I need. I can’t buy many groceries in Greater Metropolitan Arab. No tofu, no TVP, no granola, or bagels – not that Huntsville’s bagels are all that good, no fresh meat, especially unbrined dinosaur descendants. Just beer and salt laden snack foods and bog stuffers in Greater Metropolitan Arab. Ask for No Salt Added in WalMart and they call the constabulary and have your charged as a domestic terrorist. It’s un-MalWart to net consume five grams of sodium per diem.

But there is a hope. The grocery business is paper thin overhead. So they have cutthroat competition and are continually introducing new products. And advertising isn’t enough to sell new products, at least to all but the slime moldest of bogs. You have to let the consumers touch it on the shelf to enable a purchase. So maybe this thing will be localized. And make living in big cities even more unhealthy. And dangerous.

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Miracle Whip Days

Zlug! Good it has not quite been. Yesterday was a nightmare of the Army kind: long periods of boredom punctuated with brief intense bursts of abject terror. The traffic was lighter but only served to make the schmucks and ferds more obvious. To paraphrase Yoda:

“Forceful the stupidity in that one is.”

was the mantra of navigating Nawth Alibam’s Shining City on the Hill yesterday. Especially the parking lots. Evidently the concept of lanes, much less one way lanes, is alien to the minds of pre-Thanksgiving shoppers.

I shall not be issuing this day or tomorrow to engage in shopping. But I shall be thankful that I have and am doing my shopping almost entirely on-line. Let the guys in uniforms do the driving.

It was also a stressful night (and yet into the day) of dripping. The browser tells me it is 19 degF in Greater Metropolitan Arab; my aft porct wireless thermometer tells me it is 24 degF, which was what the forecast from the weather beavers in Huntsville proclaimed. Either is too d*** little heat for this Old Retired, Flatulent Physicist, not that one ever retires from being a physicist unless one is brain whacked – physically. Most of my colleagues, the ones not physicists, would agree physicists as a class are whacked mentally.

The preparation for the drippage entailed attention to the weather beavers who prattled on about their individual station’s “weather app. Intriguingly, in some cases, only iPhone apps are offered which leads me to wonder whether all of their audience is Apple slaves, Android users don’t care about weather, or they don’t care about Android users. The latter seems strange since Androidites outnumber Appletonians by about four to one last I checked.

But the thing that disturbed me most, as I was futzing with the myriad flows, was their claim that “the app is free.” Clearly this is a blatant prevarication bounded by abject stupidity and criminal misrepresentation. This leads me to SCP’s Conjecture number leventy-leven:

“No App is FREE!”

The demonstration of this is rather trivial but since it is the feast of leftovers, I shall indulge folks whose digestive systems have preempted their mental energy budget. Simply put no transfer of funds may be necessary to download the app but it does entail time and effort on the user’s part and that costs. Also it takes time and money to install, set-up, and run the app. And it takes ditto to access the weather beaver’s data and to assess it in context. Hence, there may be no direct cost but there are substantial indirect costs that cannot be neglected.

And Qadgop begs me to remind that their is amortization and wear–and-tear on the hardware. I believe Qadgop has plans to do wear-and-tear on the dinosaur descendant later today.

I am informed by colleagues that today is not only the great Amerikan holiday, but in accidental coincidence of religionist zeal is also the initiation of Chanukah. So we may celebrate not only christianist fanatic but also jewish celebration. Hence the feast of leftovers, sufficient for a week or so and not just one night. And if one fries the dinosaur descendant unsafely there will be a great oil lighting.

Live Long and Prosper. But eschew the Stupids.

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Neandertals ain’t Humans

Better this morning. Rained all night and that made sure the temperature was just mildly brrrrrr this morning. But the weather beavers are now foretelling two drip nights in a row on the sides of the Religionist fanatic holiday. The gym was blessedly sparse and should be more so tomorrow. The podcasts were the usual science ones and generally unmentionable other that two by Abe Flato: one on eating tree nuts; and the other on the Kennedy assassination shooting. I understand the latter is already unpopular for debunking conspiracy mumblage. What is it about humans that they have to have conspiracies. What is it about journalists that competence is so rare?

On which note, I came across a Discovery article [Link] that is about projectile points antedating “humans”. By humans they seem to mean homo sapiens, but none of the other geni. This is the purest of stercus, a total ignorance of what the taxonomy means. So why did they do it? Is there some reason we can’t admit that predecessors invented the projectile point? After all it is a pretty easy extension from the hand axe/blade to a PP. Could this be some form of sapiens arrogance. Perhaps even religionism?

But what it clearly is, is rather abysmal journalism. That is amplified by the site not permitting comments. Yes, there’s a comment section but its machinery doesn’t work. You can write all the comment you want but can’t post.

I have to wonder if this is why Discovery channel is itself such a collection of stercus? Or just a symptom?

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Stupidity in Action

Warmer this morning, but not by much. It’s on the ragged edge of the solid-liquid phase change for dihydrogen oxide. My browser tells me 33 degF, which is now, three hours after I arose from my bed and motored out to Scant City for gym. I know it is not hot enough for me, especially with the wind leeching all my body heat.

The podcast this morning was a bit strange, an episode of the CBC’s “Best of Ideas” on war, peace, and public health. The folk interviewed were all medicalists of some sort and labored under the sorts of delusions about war that most such seem to. The program started with an interview of a nonagenarian academic who flatly refused to discuss war because it was so repugnant to her. I don’t fault her her dislike but I do detest the attitude. I believe it was Lord Kelvin who said what we could not measure we did not know. I have since found that there are many things that cannot be meaningfully measured, pain, for example, but I have learned that what we will not discuss and analyze binds us in a slavery of ignorance.

My studies of war have led me to the hypothesis that it is the direct result of organization. Bear in mind this is not about violence; humans are naturally violent and will be violent irrespective of organization. The easy way to get to this hypothesis is via Clausewitz, who can be misquoted as saying that “war is an extension of policy.” Policy is a characteristic of an organization. For an individual to have policy he/she must adopt some of the characteristics of an organization. From this we can infer that war is inherent, or derivative from, organization.

It is often cited that hunter-gatherer bands, the simplest human organization known. sometimes are completely peaceful. But invariably they also live in an environment where they never have to enforce policy outside the band. Hunter-gatherer bands who do wage (primitive) war also have to enforce policy outside the band. Variance zero.

In effect then, denying or ignoring war is a form of unhealthy and unrealistic denial. It will not go away if ignored, and by ignoring it we give up any hope of control or influence. And that is poor economy. We should not stop trying to control or prevent war but not understanding it and using resources to help sick or damaged people is a waste of at least some of those resources. It is foolishness.

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Homo Vicarious

A nasty morning after a sleepful night. It may even has been restful. At least I was less bed tired this morning than is modal. My browser tells me it is 23 degF in Greater Metropolitan Arab; my aft porch wireless thermometer sez 27 degF. Both are too d*** cold for this ORF. So I did my constitution on the stationary bicycle in my study. Not as good, physically nor menally, as a stumble on the path in the park but avoiding heart attack and frostbite and whatever – especially a visit to those modern pest holes we still call hospitals – is a boon.

I ran across this cartoon: [Link]

and was rather taken with the punch line. Is it craziness to dislike sports, at least the vicarious types like one observes on the electromagnetic audio-visual receiver? I think not. If anything, it is the opposite. And a very nasty, depraved, abusive type of opposite.

In fact, I would advance that this is a chief characteristic of bogs except that there are geeks, and a few nerds, who participate in this perversion. Now be mindful that I am not talking about sports one participates in. That may be stupid and foolish and rash but it is not mentally unhealthy, except in a purely physical sense of losing one’s mind due to having one’s brain smashed. No, rather I talk about spectator sport which is even more vicarious than spectator sex.

But, no, this perversion must be a separate infestation of humanity, the primary reason why we have politicians and lawyers and all the other dire threats to the future of humanity. And because it is so widespread, it is the norm and nothing can be done about curing it and it can be survived only by bunkering in.

On a more pleasant note, we observed an article [Link] that McDougal’s signage rots our higher faculties and enjoyments. In effect horrible, unhealthful food and higher thought processes cannot coexist. Presumably this is a commonality of chain businesses and not just the world’s worst food purveyor.[1]

Happily this is an affliction that is curable. We may either force the congress of thieves to outlaw chain retail businesses – a highly unlikely event – or resort to the use of civil disobedience which at least has the virtue of being a participatory sport. Sadly that is also highly unlikely given the nature of Amerika’s food perversion. But we can be happy in the knowledge that the cancer does have a cure; we just most likely won’t avail ourselves of it. One the other hand, the food is so unhealthy that we shan’t have to live a empty, vapid life for very long.

[1]  Actually I have experience with a worse food purveyor but it was a singleton. When I was an adolescent my parents took the family on a motorcar vacation to the Floridas and we overnighted in a small chain motel in a room with broken air conditioning and a restaurant that could actually ruin hotcakes. I managed to contract both pneumonia and food poisoning which made for a truly unique vacation experience.