Elephant Poop Fest

Yesterday was an amazing day.

First, in Congress, an astounding display of inept (occasionally incompetent, less occasionally competent) questioning (and character assassination.) If nothing else, this displayed that too many of our elected officials (and their voters) are critically short of gray matter. In particular, the Repulsian quislings were blatantly obvious with uric acid crystals in their brains. If anything, their clumsy bumbling achieved the opposite of their intentions, imparting validity to the former myrmidon’s claims.

Half way through the inquisition, I had to wonder if lying is idempotent? That is, is a lie about a lie a lie or a truth? 

Second, Fartus Maximus displayed the limits on his ego in his second encounter with a real dictator and not just one who thinks such in his cranium. I was particular bemused by his rapid retreat, much like a puppy’s after his first encounter with a rolled newspaper after urinating on the rug. What’s next, an atomic wedgie from some banana “republic” El Supremo?

So, overall, a sad day for Amerika. 

To end on a positive note, at least Fartus Maximus makes Garfield look good. Of course, he had help from a wanna-be minion as well.

Crap Mire

I am getting tired of water falling from the sky. When I was a child I found solace in rain, mostly because it was a time when I was permitted to huddle down and not deal with people. That should have been a warning of my incipient introversion except my mother is unable to process anything but her own ambitions and I didn’t know about introversion until I was in college. 

Mostly now I huddle and try not to think of the possibility of damage to either property or person.

One of those few moments of not thinking about led me to consider if we are now in an age of disillusionment. I suspect it began when the Soviet Union collapsed without bringing nuclear winter to the planet. I haven’t given up on that fear yet, especially now that the administration is riddled with agents of the Tsar. 

I also entertain that the disillusionment began earlier, about the time I learned about introversion, with the Vietnam Interaction. I call it that because in today’s environment of hate and entitlement I am not sure which is more akulturny, war or conflict. I do know we pitied those who went and fought and made vacuum heroes of those who hid in Canadia. 

One of the things that seems to hold up best over the years is Sturgeon’s Rule. It seems to at least as useful and accurate as Newton’s “Laws.” Sturgeon tells us that 90% of everything is CRAP. What makes this valuable is that the rule is both temporal and spatial and multi-dimensional. 

What it doesn’t tell us, however, is how to measure a lie. Is it the number of people who are fooled by it, or the number of people who leave it to fester. I wonder about this because I want to know who has the bigger lies, organized religion or the administration? I suspect the latter because they have been around for thousands of years while the administration has only been here a couple of years. But that reduces the matter to enumeration, not magnitude. 

All of this is part and parcel of the disillusionment. Religion has been highly successful in making people stupid and hurt. Politics ditto. At least I suspect they are causative. But maybe the rule also applies to humans and 90% are mentally and/or physically CRAP. In which case the big meteor strike got the wrong animals. 

When I was a kid, we had trust in American (and a few furrin) manufacturers. Now we can no longer trust the manufacturers of motorcars. Nor drugs. And as of yesterday, the manufacturers of sneakers. The question is whether we have become like the Communist countries and have to buy what is offered because there are no longer any choices, just bad goods. 

Perhaps we should rename MalWart Gum? 


A completely useless piece of kitsch presented to you for being the best at something absolutely meaningless.

As opposed to a medal which is a cheap token presented to you for doing something absolutely magnificent.

Makes you wonder about our priorities as a society, doesn’t it?

Fourday Rant

I was awakened this morning by thunder bumping. Given the week thus far I am unsirprised. In fact, yesterday afternoon was a bit of a visit to Tartarus inasmuch as this box suffered four involuntary reboots courtesy of the shoddy infrastructure (to say nothing an better of their management) of Greater Metropolitan Arab Electron Uncooperative.

At gym, I listened to an episode of “Linux for the Rest of Us.”[Link] I should mention that this is a “filler” podcast for times like now when the “Ubuntu” podcast is on holiday. Like most Linux podcasts it is a turbulent mixture of egalitarianism and elitism, of humility and arrogance. The elitism and arrogance shine most brightly in the bragging refusal on the part of such to explain nothing, the idea being if you are smart enough to listen to the podcast you are smart enough to know how to do anything in Linux. So mostly it’s a matter of occasionally banal nattering and less occasional obliviousness.

The pod reader was rather like a hen with tail feather on fire. He had found some article of the ten best (new?) Linux clients of the year and spent some time disparaging them all as banal and trite. Then he warbled a maudlin dialog about the absence of the fabled “Year of the Linux Desktop.” I came home feeling rather a bit abused by the vacuity of it all.

I was also struck by the meh of the list and in that I am in agreement. What I am not in agreement is the idea that Linux is collapsing. That isn’t necessarily so. The problem with pioneers is that they have difficult recognizing maturity and that is increasingly what characterizes the Linux community. I would ask, what significant new hand tools have you seen in recent years. I can recall none since the electric screwdriver. I would also suggest the pod reader go learn up on “S” curves and that they represent.

Incidentally, there is still new software that is better. IMHO the best new client last year was “Google Clean Calendar,” which is an absolute necessity now that Mozilla is congenitally unable to keep ThunderBird talking to Google Calendar, hence making TB as worthless as a politician’s promise.

I won;t get on the dis-reputability and venality of journalists these days. That topic is already pounded into the bog.

As far as the “Year of the Linux Desktop” is concerned, recognize that it is a grail quest. If you don’t know what that is, go ask you HS “English” teacher. The reason there won’t be such is that the founding fathers of Linux can’t understand the mind sets of slaves and serfs. (And the differences.) A simpler approach is mathematical: Sturgeon’s Rule states that 90% of everything is crap. The addenda to that are worse and (slightly) better cases. 

Sturgeon’s Rule applies to humanity. Ninety percent of humans are Bogs; nine percent are Geeks (and semi-Nerds) and one percent are Nerds. So at best, the only people that will voluntarily adopt Linux are about ten percent of humanity. The rest want a different freedom or exchange any hope of freedom for the pseudo-reality of society. 

Socially Abnormal


I wonder sometimes if this is why women don’t go into STEM? One catastrophic failure and that’s a quit? 

I still have nightmares from first grade catastrophes. My parents were wise enough to keep me at home before that; although I suspect it was more for their reputation than my wellbeing.

Of course when I found out STEMs are SUPPOSED to make mistakes……….

Corporate Slavery

The digital revolution is a front for the same old Capitalist oligarchs.

I buy stuff on-line. And as a result, I get emails advertising other (or the same) stuff based on what I buy.

This is all Stercus.

Why is it Stercus?

Because no actual sales consideration is put into this.

Good salespeople get inside your head. They know what you like and hence what you likely want.

The proof is in the offering. These corporate entities know – trivially – your sizes.

So why do they even show you anything that isn’t available in your size.

Is it because they are so stupid they can’t imagine alienating you with frustration and disappointment?

Or are they so arrogant they just don’t care?

Human Nature

I noted on FaceScroll a few minutes ago that the (state of) Washington legislature has negated “Philosophical” objections to vaccination. 

I have to admit that I am a bit conflicted by this. On the one hand, I believe in that everyone is entitled to Free Will and Liberty. With the caveat that they cannot hurt another person. With the caveat that if that person can hurt enough people, their freedom may be compromised.

But how do we quantify this?

How do we reconcile controlling children with forbidding abortion? If we think embryos are people then how can we control their lives until they are “of legal age?” And why can we afflict them with poverty, neglect, and mental incompetence? 

If we can decline to vaccinate our children because they are too young to make a decision, how can we not protect other children from our own? 

I am constantly reminded of how much society has deteriorated since Classical Greece; how many of us actually wonder, not be naively convinced, of what is the “Good?” 

How can we ignore “the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few?” 

I personally have some insight into “Herd Immunity.” But I can do maths, which half of the rest of humanity cannot. Why do we not treat those people like children?

The list continues: I shall stop now before I get mired in the La Brea tar pit of Politicians. 

A viable conjecture is that all humans are handicapped mentally. 

Inequity and discrimination are basic characteristics of human nature. 

Sand Castles

I noticed this morning that they (whoever that is,) are making another attempt to make a movie of Frank Herbert’s “DUNE.” [Link]

Let me start by saying that I am lukewarm on Herbert’s work. It ranks alongside Captain Future and Doc Savage.

In SY 66/67, I was a Freshman at the Campus of the Black Warrior. The reading assignments passed out in my Freshman Syntax/Literature classes were unengaging and banal. I especially remember having to read John Knowles’ “A Separate Peace” and having nothing of the novel adhere to my mind.

Sadly and happily, that SY was replete with some good literature. Tolkien was making a come back, Frank Herbert had just written “DUNE,” and Robert Heinlein had produced “Stranger in a Strange Land.” I forget which one of Tolkien’s books I read but it was at least 10 dB better than Knowles’ outhouse material. The characters were much more identifiable and the plot was engaging. Herbert’s “DUNE” was better yet, maybe by 3 dB although the mysticism and arrant social stupidity was disgusting. But for a Southron boy struggling with the post-apocalyptic morass of the modern Sowth just after the centennial of the Great Sepuku and the everpresent Inquisition of the Vietnam “War,” the tale of a dis-associated kid cast among fatalistic nomads by a self-consuming society was a mirror.

Sadly for “DUNE,” SISL was 15 dB better because it offered the same core story with hope and promise rather than sad desperation. And the writing was considerably better. Heinlein displayed that mastery that lifted him above average pulp writer.

All of this, of course, was ignored, except for anathematic criticism and rejection, by the university’s literature professors. Which made it all that attractive to dis-social Introvert NERDs who endured syntax/literature courses so they could get to real courses on maths and science.

I have to admit that over the years I have returned to these early discoveries. I had read science fiction prior to college, but it was limited to ACE double book bought at the family drug store on the rare occasions I could wrangle a visit there and the banal socially-acceptable slime mold SF at the Huntsville Carnegie Library. In retrospect, I didn’t know how good it was until I beheld its “successors” and their decrepitude. Apparently most librarians are as SF blind as literature professors. And I have a permanent soft spot for librarians.

Anyway, I have read several of Tolkien’s Ring books over the years, most at the urging of my colleague Total Angular Momentum Magnetic Inductance, and found them a very Oxfordian view of Racism, which led me to discover why Racism was a farce and a cancer. I have read “DUNE” several times and each time found it lacking. I tried some of the derivatives and abandoned them quickly. SISL has been visited almost thirty times over the years, always with satisfaction and discovery. Somehow Heinlein achieves the idea entropy of poetry in prose.

But returning to the movie. The original DUNE movie was better than “The Black Hole,” which is the only movie I have been thrown out of, for uncontrollable laughing – it was that bad in its physical underpinnings. But sitting through the DUNE movie was only possible by paying strict accounting to the deviations from the book. And subsequent attempts to view the movie have failed within ten minutes. 

So why is a second try going to be made?

I find it indicative that no one has tried to make a movie of SISL. The conjecture arising is that truly good science fiction cannot be movieized. 

American Political Anatomy

Republican Base: People who don’t want to be told who they can’t hate. Also, don’t want to pay taxes and want to abolish government so their representatives won’t rob them.

Republican Politicians: People who run for office to get rich by directing tax money to rich people who tip moderately.

Democratic Base: People who don’t want to be hated. Also want the rich people to pay for government.

Democratic Politicians: People who run for office to control everyone and make them homogeneous. With a blender if necessary.

Independent Base: People who want to get away from hate, both those who do and those who fear it.

Independent Politicians: Imaginary Beasts