Last Hawgin’

The year ends today. And yes, I know it is a silly artificial arbitrary designation based on local – i.e., planetary – seasons rather than the actual orbit of Tellus but it still has some social impact and more inertia. I have scant doubt the evening will be marred by repeated explosions of illegal fireworks and more illegal firearm discharges. One may only hope no collisions – humans are not good at killing each other, only maiming.

The winter has settled upon us, admittedly rather gently so far. But we shall plumb the immediate depths by the morrow, which will be another wasted day of pseudo-holiness. I shall retain my bile for such till then.

It being the end of the year, it seems appropriate to natter a bit about some tabs that have survived far too long, kept alive only because of my lack of attention span and will power. Somehow the two enjoy a Heisenberg-like relationship. 

First, an article [Link] entitled “Mystery solved: why hot water freezes faster than cold.” The title is a bit of a rubbish since we have had theories of the Mpemba effect for quite a few years. It’s also rubbish because the results reported are based on a simulation that hasn’t been experimentally verified.

So it’s typical contemporary journalism, a mixture of pony and poo. Which doesn’t seem to bother contemporary journalists and indicates why we have a problem with news. 

I though this article appropriate at this time since it addresses why we need to drip the hot water lines as well as the cold now. I’m also not going to elaborate on the why because it’s the end of the year and I can be a bit grumpy. And intolerant of asentient, arational, aintelligent Bogs. I also want to share the article’s gratuitous illustration:

I fear that I rather identify with this chap even if I am nowhere near as handsome.

After that, it seems appropriate to include an article [Link] entitled “Why evangelicals are OK with voting for Roy Moore.” I realize that the election is over – shy of the named individual mounting armed rebellion – but the density of ground state crazy is still way TOO HIGH in Alibam. I have to admit the explanation offered by the journalist makes some sense but it is still evil at its core. I am undecided if it’s hubris but I am sure that there is a classical Greek term for doing unspeakable evil for misplaced good reasons. Personally, I put it down to curing dandruff with a plasma cannon: yes, you do get rid of the dandruff; yes, you also get rid of the head and thereby the person. Of course, I am assuming that the person is good which may be a misplaced assumption in this context.

Some insight is offered towards this by the next article [Link] entitled “Religion may alter your psychology, even if you’re a non-believer.” An academic study performed in Finland indicates that the idea of God is wired into our physiology. 

That’s a nice way of saying it’s hard to be rational about the deity. And that Bogs probably can’t do it at all. Hence the Evangelilcals – or, as they have revealed themselves, Evilgelicals. 

Bottom line, religion ain’t rational. And today is an Ice Cream day. Literally, it would seem. 

This is a pretty dismal picture. It’s one of those instances of looking about us and wondering how we not only haven’t killed ourselves off – because that’s about all we seem to do – but that we have made progress from hanging in trees and screaming insults at the predators below to being able to destroy the planet. Which we seem to be doing. 

And the politicals and religious seem to be taking satisfaction in that destruction. 

So, yes, it is colding. Inside and out.

And the new year offers scant encouragement. 

 

Discontent Looming

We sit today at the leading edge of the first major nastiness of the winter, at least here in Alibam. The nastiness has already plagued the Yankee Nawth for some days and I already ache with sympathy. Too many blood thinners, I suppose.

It being week-out, I assayed to the gym this morning at 0800. Part of the week-out discrimination that demonstrates just how ill committed to health Southron, well, Alibam, at least, hospitals are. Tomorrow will be even later because of the Christianist religious discrimination of that institution.

My work-out was abbreviated, mostly because Saturn’s day is the most hectic of the week and made more so this day by the impending colding. Sadly, the television monitors were set to Faux News, probably because the weekend staff and jocks are mostly Repulsian Evilgelicals. That’s OK. I mostly just listen to a Linux podcast and try not to laugh out loud at the Faux News promulgated by the partei maskarovkists.

This morning’s was a bit galling; evidently the administration is now playing whack-a-mole with civil servants. I suppose orphans and the poor will be next since they have already been condemned as wastrels and socially cancerous. But the bashing of civil servants reminded me that those folks have two things the political lack: integrity and competence. But they do have a tendency, albeit justified, of viewing all politicals, regardless of partei affiliation, as mindless criminal berserkers.

I left then to visit the Greater Metropolitan Arab Postal Office and then replenished the petrol in my motorcar. The former reinforced my opinion of civil servants; even with the mess that the Yankee council of thieves has made of the Postal Service, they still do better than that council. And then it occurred that perhaps we would do better to select a mail carrier at random in each district and send them to serve.

Or perhaps to force Congress Critters to carry mail one week a month?

Year Mirror

The Winter of Discontent has begun to descend upon us. Today and tomorrow will be as good as it will be – weather-wise – for a while. The Weather Beavers and the righteous meteorologists at the National Weather Service foretell that the next week – beginning tomorrow afternoon – will be pipe breakingly colding. 

Which brings us to a host of natters and general end-of-year complaints.Starting with why building contractors in Alibam consistently build houses whose plumbing can’t survive winter weather. And why you can’t buy heat tape in Alibam. Or get it installed.

And while we’re on the Repulsian consipiracy to reduce everyone but partei members and their patrons to serfdom, I note that former judge, former district attorney, probably never actually human, Pedophile Roy, filed a litigation asserting voter fraud. [Link] This was batted down by the Alibam attorney general, booted by a judge, and the vote certified. 

But Pedophile Roy ended up winning in the end because Anthropologists have declared that he is not actually human, but a distant relative dubbed Alibamapithecus Denialus, which apparently demonstrates that pre-humans, once thought extinct, are alive and thriving (?) in Alibam.

As yet, the actual nature of another group, the Christianist Evilgelicals, have not been determined although some Anthropologists, evidently the ones who read science fiction, have conjectured these may be a related group Alibamapithecus Morlockus.

Which in turn reminds me that in Alibam, an intellectual is someone who reads and isn’t attending school. A rather rare instance. At least in Alibam.

In contrast, the city of New Yawk is removing antique Fallout Shelter signs. [Link] Some of these signs were actually accurate although the food and water was pillaged decades ago by the homeless and poor of New Yawk, many of whom expired from the consumption of same. Evidently someone decided that actually irradiating New Yawk would be an improvement?

I ran across a crowd funding effort to send Pedophile Roy to somewhere he would be appreciated, like Nawth Korea. Funds have been raised for the shipping container but not yet sufficient to hire a garbage scow to actually transport the container and is contents. 

While I am on the matter of discontent, there is also some discussion of sending Mozilla along for the ride. Evidently their reclaiming of Thunderbird, their past best product, has, along with FireFox improvements, angered much of the human species not under the mind wipe of Gooey for throwing out the only things that made FireFox and ThunderBird livible, namely their add-ins. On the good side, the forks and clones of both have increased greatly in response to demands from rational humans for computer clients that are actually useful rather than just noxious and unpleasant. 

MegaHard, of course, is immune to such and is quietly feasting on the brains of its users. Which is not so bad since they haven’t used their brains since adopting Winders. 

Meanwhile, I will try to endure and survive the coming week of inadequate heat. 

Which reminds me that I should mention that the standard deviation of the atmospheric temperature distribution is directly related to the mean temperature. So the higher the mean, the more low (and high) temperature instances there are. Now, can we get a Greek philosopher to find a politician capable of understanding statistics and temperature? I thought not. The latter, not the former.

Der Tag

OK, it’s Christmas Day. The renormed holy day plagiarized by the Christianist Church from Nature worshiping Solstice Keepers and then further plagiarized by Capitalist Oligarchs for their personal greed and profit. So basically a pit of cold nastiness. Similar to Dante’s depiction of Tartarus.

The Nerd channels have been full of rationalization the last week. Very human. When you are confronted with superstition and ignorance and apathy towards what you have demonstrated accurate, a bit of shouting in indignation is in order.

Wasted, of course, but in order. 

The point is that this is a Bog thing and the more pronounced the boggery state, the more excessive the Christmas thing. It is always the workers who are paid the least and have the least skills and knowledge who have the most “festive” electrical lamps strung on their houses and shrubbery. 

The good news is that the number of Nerds and Geeks who are abandoning the practice is increasing. FD SCP and I have not used seasonal lamps for ten years or so, and the density in our neighborhood has been steadily decreasing. None of which, I suspect, can be seen by the naked eye from Low Earth Orbit. The city of Greater Metropolitan Arab still has its tasteless display of lamps, most in effigy form, in the city park, but that is transferred Capitalist greed and hence ensconced until the influx of portraits of dead Caucasian politicians becomes less than then outflux of taxpayer monies.

And no, I am not going to rail about the inequity of supporting needy Capitalists with the taxes of taxpayers. Politicians, of whatever rank, care not so any verbiage is wasted. 

But back to a sampling of articles. First, an article [Link] entitled “Gifts are a traditional part of Christmas – but why do we give presents at all? ” The thesis here, advanced by a Fremch anthropologist, who evidently has been heavily influenced by Claude Levi-Strauss’ work on “the primitive mind” is that we give gifts to control, or, at least, influence, the recipient. This sounds a bit childish, on both side, which it is, since we aboundingly these days try to make our bairns “behave”by invoking a shelf sprite. 

I have to admit that the first thought that comes to mind is that Tolkien would shudder at the abuse of dignified elves in this manner, but them perhaps shrug since they are extinct, mostly due to humans. I am unsure of what his reaction would be to the parallel adoption of this nonsense by the Capitalists. Probably aggregate them with Orcs of the worst odor. 

The model of gift giving projected by our Frenchman is that of Potlach, the idea of government by gift. It’s a novel idea this century of politicians taking from the poor and giving to the rich, a bit of a comeback of King John and his Shire Reeves (Sheriffs.) Certainly no one in politics today has any attitude towards the poor except to permit them a lingering death. 

I have to admit that I gave a few gifts this season. Most of them were to people that I treasure and cherish, as people. If there is an aspect of control there, it is an attempt to cozen them into failing to recognize what a bad person I am. So, as I often advance, an instance of human insecurity.

This brings me to the second article [Link] entitled “An anthropologist explains why we love holiday rituals and traditions.” It’s written by a Connecticut academic and it seems to me that the colding has disrupted his neurons. He cites all manner of reasons for liking holidays from buffering stress to family relations. 

All of which is pure EXTRO rubbish. Utter CRAP! He quite ignores that the season is itself a source of stress and family gathering the penultimate form of such stress. This is why the suicide incidence increases in this season, because apathetic relatives and greedy Capitalists are making the environment so toxic that poor INTROs cannot stand its abatement in a few days. 

If this is the rot that they teach in anthropology classes at U Connecticut, then I have reason to be proud of the Campus of the Black Warrior’s department, at least back when I was a student and they understood the tension and stress of the season. Oh, how I envied those few who got to stay on campus over the holidays. And how I enjoyed that one Christmas stuck tending the radio observatory in central Illinois. 

In a way, Christmas has become a parody of both Solstice and religion. Both use it to advance the idea of increased life, in one instance the lengthening of the day, in the other the birth of a messiah. Never mind that the birth was months apart from the period and that the events of that birth even more months removed. Religion is about misinformation all too often.

But Christmas has become about destruction and death. Destruction of the environment to the enrichment of Capitalists and death through our unhealthy activities and the escalating stress of the period. 

Perhaps it is time for us to re-examine our customs and readopt some that have been taken from us, like freedom and dignity. Those are things more to be admired and celebrated. At least, so say I.

 

The HolyDay that Rules Them All

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve. And at that time we shall enter the Twilight Zone of the Greatest – as in magnitude – DDOS (Dedicated Denial of Services) period of the year. 

To put that in context, I went to gym this morning and will be unable to return to gym until Tuesday morning next. 

This transcends the usual religionist discrimination of the gym being open on Shabbat but closed on the Protestant Sabbath. 

Basically, for the next tree days, Amerika is plunged back into the throes of a theocracy.

Happily, there are Capitalists who are striving mightily to ameliorate this cancerous situation.

Not out of any goodness or altruism, purely from greed. Which is the foremost Amerikan virtue.

Over and above the favoritism shown for the more demented Protestant Christianists, the holiday is a joke.

Historically, the best estimates are that Joshua ben Joseph bar David was actually born in March. Isaac Newton’s birthday is closer to the holiday observance than Joshua’s.

The early (organized) church enveloped the solstice to suck in unsuspecting folk who observed that holiday. Of course, back then, solstice was a lot closer to the orbital turning point. 

So what the holiday really celebrates is pagan naturalism and the miscreancy of organized religion.

Which is part of what makes it so attractive to Capitalist Oligarchs. 

It is also a period of great, probably greatest, stress on Amerikans. Deep down, we know it’s all a fake and a prevarication and we all have to play along with the charade. In a way, this season defines what it is to be human. 

Large portions of pretense, falseness, and lies. Enough to put the strongest gorge in orbit. 

Sometimes Civilization is highly over-rated.

Wailing Neighbors

I note that the UN has overwhelmingly censured recognition of Jerusalem as the capitol of Israel. 

Good On Them. 

I also rather doubt that the administration will be capable of learning from its abandonment of its previous approach to dealing with other nations. 

On a more mundane level, perhaps it can learn that micturation can go both ways?

And we rather have to wonder, from an information processing sense, if the US ambassador got her sensors and writing arm overloaded. Or maybe she just wrote down something like “Everyone!” 

“It is hard to have nice plates when you keep cattle.”

After the Motor Jaunt

Make Amerika Grossly Awful? I note that the Repulsians passed their so-called Tax Reform legislation yesterday that is supposed to benefit the taxpayers.

So since when did the grossly wealthy pay proportionate taxes? Apparently less so now. 

From Castellum SCP, it appears that the bill was primarily intended to punish citizens who support the Democrud party. And advance the Repulsian goal of reinstating serfdom. Talk about Russia envy. The key question however is why are the Congress Critters so naive as to think the oligarchs will not bring them under the boot once the rest of Amerika is enserfed?

On a less pleasant note, Christmas is almost upon us. And I am roundly nauseated by the continual offerings of unwanted, undesired technology. No, I do not want a kilobuck cellular telephone; my $200 ASUS is better than anything else I have seen or tried, including Applephones. No, I do not want a 4K television receiver; quite frankly what is available to view is bad enough in HD, much less any more resolution. 

I go back to an earlier statement that the total quality of what is available on television (plus computer video) is a constant so increasing the number of sources just makes more CRAP. 

A Luddite is supposed to be someone who dislikes technology for its changes to society and is intent on destroying that technology. (Which may be the hope of defeating the Repulsians and the Democruds.) But what do we call a person who wants quality rather than Shmutz? I don’t know. An Intelligent, Rational Human, maybe? Certainly the two seem to be in equally short supply.

And where have the kettles gone? I haven’t seen a Salvation Army kettle this month. And who will give the troops coffee and donuts and not rob them if the Salvation Army is gone. 

I also notice that Alibam’s Favorite Offspring, Not-A-Judge Less is now claiming voter fraud. Hmmmm. His chief executive got that one before his election was over and it took Less how long? Has anyone checked to see if he has any gray matter in his skull? 

That isn’t an unsalted mixture of oatmeal and sheep interstices? 

On a better note, I motored into Nawth Alibam’s Shining City on The Hill yesterday. Through a rather nice rain storm. Happily it frightened many of the kamikaze drivers who actually behaved themselves. And we owe it all to their ignorance of physics. Drive fast when the roads have low friction, drive slow when the roads have high drag.

And I got to break fast with colleague-friends and share a few moments of joy and companionship. And meet a truly delightful waitress who was charmingly disrespectful of our age and gravity. 

And so far the season has been nicely, pleasantly vacant of superstition and mysticism and hydrophobic rantings.