Saturday, December 28, 2013

Dealing with shit and love

So I started dating this one woman and I have been talking to a long time friend at the same time, dealing with Christmas and the anniversary of my son's death (12-29) and realizing that there is so much shit in my life that I have packed down and never dealt with I really don't know how to handle it all.

I recently read this book called "The Lover" by Marguerite Duras.  This woman has an incredibly raw style of writing that leads the reader through all of their own emotions.  Great book.  Between this woman I am dating and this book by Duras I have been dredging up all the shit in my life and really addressing it emotionally rather than packing it away.

This woman wanted to spend the anniversary of my son's death with me.  This time of year is usually really difficult for me, and this year because I am forcing my self to deal with the raw emotions it is particularly difficult.  I know next year will be the first December I have enjoyed since 1999.

Last night it occurred to me that next year this woman I am dating might not be with me.  That would be bad because I am falling in love with her and if I spend the 29th with her this year and she is not there next year the emotional crash would be terrible.  Sounds really pussy huh?

Emotional shit can be difficult to deal with so, in the past, I really have not dealt with it.  To go forward I really need to go back and clean up that shit and I have to do it by myself.  Truthfully, depending on her this 12-29 would be the pussy move.

I think I hurt her when I told her, but, we will deal with that or not.  I hope we stay together, but, I have recovered from lost love before and I will probably have to again.

I think the next couple of months are going to be really big to me.  Dredging up shit recycling it into something useful rather than packing it down to build my life on a foundation of ignored, hard pack emotional shit.

Will she have the patience?  The strength?

I know my old friend does.  She rocks and she will talk to me when I need it.  I think I am going to spend a lot of time writing about this stuff, and some time talking.  We will see.

In the end though, I guess what I am saying is that we all shit and we all have to deal with that shit one way or another.  Emotional healing is the worst, the messiest and dealing with it has the most benefit.

So here I am, getting better every day, hoping that as I change, this time, I can keep some of the people I love in my life.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Life intervenes

The other day I met a woman I really liked and I asked her out.  I have been out a couple of times since my wife passed away.  Once with a long time friend and once with a woman I met on the Internet.  This one I asked out, out of the blue.

That first date (with my old friend) was great, but, that is where it stayed.  She is an amazing woman, single mother who put herself through school to earn a Masters in Accounting.  Now she is helping to raise her first grandchild.  I like amazing women, women who are strong and smart.  I have loved this one a long time and I'll keep loving her.  I just don't see a future for the two of us.

The second date sucked.  She was about as responsive as a brick.  When I was younger and I dated a lot I used to make women laugh.  I tried to draw her out, but, since my wife passed laughing and making people laugh is not a big part of my repertoire.

I blame me, but, it was both of us really.  If I had been my old self I could have made her laugh and she would have enjoyed herself, but, it would have been one of those meaningless affairs.  An affair without a moment.  She'd be an "oh yeah, I vaguely remember her....." and had I not met her during such a pivotal moment in my life I would have forgotten her already.

Life is really comprised of these tiny individual moments that we remember forever.  Sometimes we know when they happen, sometimes we don't.  They are moments with people we love and people we know and strangers we have never met.  They are pictures our minds take and file away without our even knowing them.

This last date, the woman and I met for coffee and we hung out for three and a half hours.  I wouldn't have guessed it was that long.  She is another amazing woman, smart, capable, strong.  The kind of woman I consider myself very fortunate to have even met, much less gone out with.

I don't put people up on pedestals, but, I recognize that some are amazing in some ways.  Some people exist on charisma and others think they are amazing, not for their accomplishments, but, for their charisma.  Actors and politicians and talking head journalists who probably don't wear pants and have bunny slippers on as they blather on about subjects they don't really know anything about.  (are examples of people known for charisma rather than accomplishment, as if attracting people makes someone capable)

Then these different, opinionated, people encourage conflict between people of different opinions.  Its dumb.  I think some people have done some amazing things, Matt Damon for example in partnering to write and produce "Good Will Hunting".  Just because Matt Damon does something amazing, should I let him tell me what to think?  Should I put him up on a pedestal and adopt his opinions on something other than entertainment as even useful?

My answer is maybe, people who have done something others have failed at are usually worth listening to.  Not because of charisma, but, because they have accomplished something.  Has Obama accomplished anything?  Not that I know of, except to get a lot of people to believe in him.  I see that motto, "change you can believe in" and it makes me want to laugh.  All belief, all charisma.

So no pedestals, just people who have actually done stuff, factory workers and doctors, nurses, engineers, accountants, laborers, skilled trades, professionals, the millions of people who actually do amazing things within the billions on Earth, and then people who talk a good game.  Maybe the talkers are trying, maybe not.  Trying doesn't cut it, talking doesn't cut it, amazing people do stuff.

So here I am, in this coffee shop, listening to this woman tell me about herself and I can feel my mind take one of those snapshots, those memories that last forever.  This is a woman I can listen to, a woman I can disagree with about somethings, agree with about others, this is a woman who has done some really amazing things and I find myself in awe of her.  My late wife was pretty amazing (almost anyone who knew her could tell you that), even my first wife was amazing, in a psychotic kind of way.  The older I get the more I want to spend time with amazing people.

I think we will date (my step daughter has ideas about that, she is insecure about losing her last parent) and I hope at least we stay friends a long time.  But, what we want isn't what life is about.

Life is about these tiny moments that come and go and we remember forever whether we want to or not.  Life intervenes in these moments, these snap shots in time, that make up our lives.  These moments come and go, they become a part of how we think, our decision making process.  The slow motion of a car rear window starring when a bullet hit it and the screams of a girl and her friend when they realize she was shot.  The sight of my oldest picking up a wine cooler and trying to drink it when he was about a year old (note to new fathers, don't put bottles on tables toddlers can reach), a guy smoking a cigarette waiting for formation in the Army, a teacher in elementary school, the girl at the desk next to me in third grade, my late wife walking down a hallway at church, my son sitting on a curb.  All these moments that we can smell, taste, feel, that make up our real lives.  Our forever lives.

So here this woman that I don't really know, this amazing woman who has done so much just being a normal person, is part of my forever life.  She is now one of those moments that, no matter how life intervenes, is going to live with me forever.

Saturday, December 07, 2013

Teachers and Messengers

One of the great dangers of religion is ambition, and by people who seek to place themselves in authority and judgment. Only in confused understanding can the false follower of God seek authority.

Teaching implies we can determine if a student has understood the material. A messenger makes no such judgment and that is an important distinction.

Matt 5:19 tells us:

"...whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire"

And what does the word translated into "fool" mean? The Greek word translated into "fool" in the Bible translates into "baby" today. Why? The Greek word μωρός is derived from a word meaning "not understood" and really means "one without understanding". In reality the passage could say, "...whosoever shall say, 'you do not understand', shall be in danger of hell fire"

Teaching implies the ability to determine if a student has learned anything. Teaching implies the ability to judge, which is something Christ has told us not to do. Christ tells us that those who say that others don't understand are in danger of hell.

There is an important distinction here, which Christ made, witness and judgment. Christ often witnessed the lack of understanding of the religious leadership, noting that they taught the ways of people as the law of God. Christ also judged, but, it was not Christ who judged but God who judged. Christ witnessed the judgment God had passed. In this way Christ taught us not to judge, but, to witness what the Holy Ghost has given us.

The distinction is the difference between a messenger, who repeats a message given or witnesses, and the authority who speaks their own understanding and judges those who understand..

The difference in a messenger or witness is that the messenger should be ignored in deference to the message and the authority who sent the message. We do not give deference to a telephone or the paper a message is written on.

Deference is given to teachers.

Matt 28 tells us: "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:"

But the word translated into "teach" here actually means "make disciples" so this passage could be translated "Go ye therefore, and make disciples in all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:"

Thursday, October 31, 2013

A Fish Story about Expectiations

The book of Jonah is one of my favorites.  Not because of the fish story.  God tells Jonah that God is going to destroy Nineveh and Jonah needs to tell the people of Nineveh that God is going to destroy the city.  The story is set around 750 B.C.

Jonah hangs out to watch the city be destroyed and the book of Jonah ends before Nineveh is destroyed about 610 B.C.  Jonah becomes impatient with God not keeping his promises in Jonah's time frame.

People become obsessed with their own expectations, their own understanding of "truth" and "how things should be".

God did not tell the people of Nineveh that God would destroy the city UNLESS they got their act together.  God did not give the people of Nineveh (or Jonah) a time frame for destruction.  God just told people that God was going to destroy Nineveh and God did.  God handed Nineveh into the hands of the Assyrians I believe, not that it matters.

We deal with a lot of falsehoods, many because of our own expectations of how "things should be".  It took God about 150 years to destroy Nineveh.  Did God let Jonah hang around until Nineveh was destroyed?  The book doesn't tell us, the book doesn't even tell us Nineveh was destroyed.  The book of Jonah ends with God rebuking Jonah because Jonah was upset with the way God did things.

Here we are, 2600 years later, Nineveh is gone and people are still expecting God to behave the way they think God should behave OR they don't believe in God because God does not behave the way they expect God to behave.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

pangeic stupidity

Ever hear of the theory of Pangea?

I was just reading about Pangea in a text book.  The Pangea hypothesis tells us that at one time there was this big continental mass that over millions of years broke into smaller pieces that formed continents and these continents drifted apart until they formed the earth as we have it today starting about 65 million years ago.

I call Bullsh*t.

Spin an unbalanced ball in a zero G vacuum and see what happens.

That's tough, so just do something simple.  Take a ball and weight one side, then spin that baby up.  It will wobble and be totally crazy.  It ain't going to spin regularly or follow a regular path.  The wobble and path will be crazy, until it self balances by "moving" stuff around.  Try driving with an unbalanced tire.

No way continental drift took millions of years.  The continents had to have taken a relatively short time to balance the spinning ball or the insane wobble and resulting geophysical forces would have pretty much made life impossible until rotation stabilized.  If the Earth were wobbling crazily for millions of years it probably would have ripped itself apart long before life appeared.  We are talking about seasonal ice ages and days that vary in length ridiculously.

In order for the Earth to be millions of years old and for evolution to occur the spinning ball had to have a balanced rotation much earlier than the Pangea hypothesis would suggest.

The Pangea hypothesis is B.S.  I can't visualize anything that would make the Pangea hypothesis work when I think about it.

That does not mean there couldn't have been something else helping to balance the ball.  Another mass or some kind of displaced mass that balanced a single huge continent.  This "displaced mass" could have moved also, maybe toward the center of the ball. It just means the physics as currently postulated are improbable.

So what did happen?  I'm not sure, I would need to do a bunch of experiments on how unbalanced balls behave while rotating in a zero G vacuum.  I could run simulations on a computer, but, they would require a lot of assumptions.  Even running physical experiments would require a lot of assumptions that could be wrong.

That means I'm not sure.  It means I know horse shit when I read it, but, that doesn't mean I know everything.  What amazes me is that people lap this crap up.  They spout out the Pangea hypothesis B.S. as if it were a documented and observed fact.

I doubt if I am the only person to have figured this out.  I would bet some other person with an understanding of engineering simulation has actually done some computer simulations.  The simulations don't support the hypothesis and most people, unlike me, don't want to risk ridicule by telling a bunch of academic authorities that they are full of shit.

The nice thing about being a high school drop out is that people expect me to be wrong and when I am right, as I often am, they are surprised and say stuff like "even a broken clock is right twice a day!"

Pseudo intellectual arrogance.

I'm not really worried about the ignorant crap people teach as fact because I am a creationist, so I just think "God made it work".  But I am also obsessively curious so I want to know how God made it work, how did this spinning ball balance?

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Pussy Fest

I started watching some of the re-runs of the "Sons of Anarchy" television show.  It is kind of hokey and way over dramatic.  These guys fight when they should lay low, lay low when they should fight and walk into ambushes as if they couldn't possibly happen.  Hokey, but, what television isn't.

I started DVRing the show and I am watching the episode "savage".  There is this scene where the kid running the club calls a meeting with everyone and literally tells the members of all the other chapters that they are going into business with pussy exclusively and that the other chapters couldn't run guns.

A bike club, like any other group, is just a bunch of people who do different things.  There are some loyalty issues with bike clubs that do not exist in most other organizations.  The guys do different things to make money and will either create partnerships and/or ask members to do stuff.  It ain't club business.  Club business is pretty much the same all over, paying dues, paying rent, organizing stuff, etc.  Club business does not change just because the club is all about motorcycles.

So, business is business.  People buy stuff, they add value and the sell stuff.  It really doesn't matter what the stuff is, it could be construction where people buy the labor of others and the added value is a new roof which they sell to someone.  The added value could be all B.S. like it is with some people who buy cheap jewelry and pretend it is good stuff and sell it out of high rent stores.  Business is just business.

If someone's business brings heat down on a club, and I was always considered a wild cannon, unpredictable, so I know about this, they are told to cool the fu*k out or get lost.  If things are bad enough other stuff can happen, but, everything has consequences so most people in business try not to over react and this includes bike clubs.  The more likely someone is to hurt a club the worse the situation.

Some people liked keeping me at arms length and others thought I was too much trouble to have around.  Yeah, I could be ruthless, but, I also pick and choose so no one could be sure if they called and told me to show up if I would be there.  This is still true, I am nothing if not inconsistent enough in the minds of others that people who like to put other people into boxes don't like me.  I am consistent, on my terms and no one else's.  I am not about to be a patch holder, but, I know enough about how things work.

So I watched this kid on SOA whining about getting out of the gun business and literally thought to myself, this is a pussy fest.  This guy is right, the future of this club is all in pussy.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

IQ and common sense and standard deviation.

You have probably heard of IQ.  Personally I think IQ is over rated and mostly crap, but, I like the fact that I am in the top 2%.  Anyone with an IQ of over 150 is.  So lets think about that.  I am going to use some basic ballparks here, but, you are welcome to check out my data.

Every normal distribution is going to have a mean, modality and a median and they are all going to be the same number, or about the same number.

If an IQ of over 150 is in the top 2% that means the standard deviation (std dev) is about 25.  Huh?

This is statistics hocus pocus and you can check it out on wikipedia or some other more reasonable source.  There is a chart that will show you the idea how a standard deviation works in a normal distribution.

There is a problem with that concept.  If the standard deviation in IQ is 25 then about 15% of people have an IQ of below 75.  About 68% of people have an IQ of between 75 and 125, about 13% have an IQ of between 125 and 150 and 2% have an IQ of over 150.

An IQ of below 75 is special needs.  That means out of 100 kids 15 should be special needs.  I don't see that in my experience.  Maybe, but, I don't think there are that many special needs people.  I think the standard deviation is probably lower or the mean is higher or both.

I went looking for more input and found this quote:

"If a person scores below 70 on a properly administered and scored I.Q. test, he or she is in the bottom 2 percent of the American population10 and meets the first condition necessary to be defined as having mental retardation."

at this website:

Okay, WTF, below 70 is in the bottom 2% and above 150 is in the top 2%.  That doesn't make sense if the average IQ is 100.  The standard deviation changes to 15 on the low side.

So the range between 70 and 150 is 80 and this range is covered by 4 standard deviations so the std dev should be 20.  70 plus 40 (2 std dev)  is 110.  150 minus 40 is 110.

Okay, so the IQ data only makes sense if the mean is 110.  In a Gausian or normal distribution, a Bell Curve, the mean, the median, the middle and the mode are all about the same.

Okay, so the middle is 110 and the average or mean is 100.  This suggests that the majority of people have an I.Q. of under 100.

Suppose we have two people with an IQ of 90 and one person with an IQ of 120.  We have three people with a mean IQ of 100, but, the modality is 90.  More people with an IQ below the mean than above the mean.

We can suggest that this is probable based on the distribution, 4 sigma between 70 and 150 with a middle of 110 and a mean of 100.  These number suggest a skewed distribution with a modality of about 90.

I found a study once that documented the IQ of teachers and the std dev was really small, around 2 and the average was 112.  This means 68% of teachers have an IQ of between 110 and 114.  13% had an IQ of 114 to 116 and 2% had an IQ of 116 to 118.

How good was the study?  No clue.  From the teachers I had in school I would say it is pretty accurate, but, from teachers I have met socially I would say it is low.  Thinking about it though, I like hanging with smarter people so ...

In my experience the smartest group of people I ever worked with are skilled trades.  Good money, less formal education, lot of smarts.

Computer geeks usually don't rate high in my estimation, although, I have met some really smart guys into computers.  I think computer geeks might rate as well as skilled trades, but, a lot of geeks are way too closed minded and focused on propaganda for me to draw a straight line between them.  Some of the self styled "hackers" I have met actually think Europeans thought the Earth was flat before Columbus and that the Church tried to squash science.  To much crap, not enough brains.

Edit: By the way, this seems incredibly obvious to me, but, it might not be obvious to others.  If the median is 110, and the mean is 100, the modality should actually be 90, which would mean that more than half of everyone you meet is below average IQ.

Saturday, October 05, 2013

Science and Creation

So the scientific method is basically,
1: think up an idea
2: test that idea
3: repeat the test over and over with different researchers
4: repeat this process with different tests and different researchers
5: declare the idea a well documented theory or even a scientific law.
6: keep testing the idea against newly available data.

In science nothing is ever proved or disproved, just more or less probable.  A Null Result or an idea that fails a scientific test makes the idea less probable.  Now scientists are people and they don't have unlimited knowledge.  Like most people they often just parrot crap they heard someone else say and when I hear people parrot ridiculous crap it bugs me to no end.

I hate "scientists" who talk in absolutes, although I should actually love them.  I built a career out of doing the impossible because people were closed minded, believed in absolutes and so they believed stuff was impossible, until I went and did it.

The link I am publishing addresses evidence for a Young Earth.

None of these ideas in this list of evidence for a Young Earth prove a Young Earth, they simply cast doubt on other ideas.  Evidence for a Young Earth would be something like "If the Earth is X years old then we should find Carbon 14 in quantities ranging between Y and Z in archaeological organic matter."     

Failing this test I propose does not eliminate the possibility of a Young Earth, but, it makes the concept of a Young Earth less probable.  Carbon 14 content establishes that either the world is at least 50,000 years old OR that God created the Earth with decayed organics having a variable carbon 14 content that were contained in layered strata congruent with natural aging.

Being both a Christian and a scientist this annoys the crap out of me.  To me the "God Hypothesis", the idea or concept of a true and living God who created the universe is a valid hypothesis that I accept on Faith, but, that requires rigorous testing using the scientific method before it becomes a scientifically valid theory or law.

How can we test the "God Hypothesis"?  Even if we figure out how to test the "God Hypothesis" and establish the probability that there is One True God as a scientific law how do we test the hypothesis of Creationism?

Wasting our time casting doubt on other ideas does not prove our ideas.

We need to push for science education and that means studying how science develops and tests ideas.  As far as I am concerned we need to teach:

"While the Hypothesis of Creation is a scientifically valid hypothesis we have no way of testing the Creation Hypothesis at this time.  In science education we study how scientists have identified and tested scientific hypotheses.  If or when someone comes up with valid, peer reviewed and accepted, testing of the Creation Hypothesis it can and should be taught in science education.  Until then we should teach scientific theories and the processes under which they have been tested and either accepted or rejected"

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Zombie Apocalypse, preparing and failing

Lately I have been interested in the concept of a "zombie apocalypse".  Can it happen?

The answer is yes and it would be incredibly bad.

The most common "rage" virus is rabies.  If rabies became an airborne virus it is possible that the world would suffer a "zombie apocalypse".  If the form of rabies is anti-viral resistant we have a huge problem.

Guess what, there are airborne rabies virus already.

The rabies virus can have an incubation period of as long as a year and as short as a week.  Incubation is the time between infection and illness.  If the airborne rabies virus became more virulent, transmitted more often, and took 6 months to a year to incubate the majority of the world would be infected before people started dying.

People with rabies die within about a week of showing the illness.  If the disease were very consistent (and thank God they are not) the entire world (90+%) would probably be infected within a few months.  Let us speculate 6 months.  I picked six months because it works with a 6 sigma distribution really well.

This isn't a real model, it is a speculative model so don't get your panties in a bunch.

The virus becomes virulent.  The first month about 4% of the world is infected and no one is sick.  The second month about 16% of the world is infected and no one is sick.  The third month about 50% of the world is infected and no one is sick, but, by now some doctors probably know something is wrong.  Rabies can't be diagnosed prior to symptoms, there are no infection tests, but, there are some smart cookies out there and I expect a few people would have a clue.

By the end of the fourth month about 85% of the people in the world are infected.  More people know something is wrong, but, no one knows exactly what and no one is sure what is going to happen.  There is some political debate.  By the end of the fifth month about 97% of the world is infected.  By the end of the sixth month 100%.

Now everyone is infected and no one is sick.  Politicians and doctors go back to working on the stuff that is popular.

Because we are working with a very consistent virus, six months later, one year after the first infections, people start going crazy with rabies.  Within a week they die.  Maybe the anti-virals work, maybe not.  The worst thing is that we have 2-3 months before most of the people in the world, including the people who would manufacture and distribute anti-virals, are dead.

By the end of the 1st month, 4% of the world population is gone.  360,000,000 people are dead.  The disease is not random, the people who have the most contact with others die first.  People who travel, truck drivers, shipping, airlines, logistics, managers, medical professionals, teachers, children, etc.

By the end of the 2nd month 16% of the people in the world are dead.  The disease follows probability of contact with others and now the 16% of the most important people in the logistics of getting a cure out there are gone.  The likelihood of combating a world wide disease with those people gone is nil.

By the end of the third month, between the deaths from the virus and the deaths from enraged victims billions are dead.  Infected people are hiding and it isn't doing any good.  Families are killing each other. 

By the end of the fourth month most of humanity is gone.  95%+. 

Game over.

That sounds pretty outrageous, but, it is probably a more likely Armageddon than a flu virus pandemic.  Why? because some preparations have been made to combat a flu virus pandemic and no one is making serious preparations for something like an airborne rabies virus pandemic.

We can't prepare for everything.  We carry a single spare tire and the odds of having two flats at the same time are minimal.  It does happen though, and when it does there isn't anything we can do except deal with the consequences of not having 2 spare tires.

With all the interest in a "zombie apocalypse" I sometimes wonder if the world isn't being somewhat prophetic, if we don't know what is going to happen already in the dark recesses of our minds.  Maybe we are heading down a road of self fulfilling prophecy where we are creating the conditions necessary for such a virus to destroy us.

In any case the research was interesting and educational.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Failure and Failure and Avoidance and Disaster

What is failure or success?

Interesting question.  One of the most interesting things happening on the web these days is the idea that either success or failure can be identified.  This is a form of evolution.

I don't believe in the evolution of man from a lower species.  I do believe that changes can occur based on environment.

Contrary to popular opinion intelligence is not an evolutionary trait.  If intelligence were an evolutionary selection there would not anywhere near as many stupid people in the world.

So what does evolution select for?  Probably memory.  Probably memory of mistakes or "bad things"

How did I come to this conclusion?  Pretty easily actually, it is based on common beliefs as represented by old sayings.  "People remember the bad and forget the good".  Think about it and I am sure you can think of similar sayings.

Psychologists tell us that people remember things attached to emotional situations best and that most of the situations we remember are attached to negative emotions.

If we consider the large number of negative "epic fail" and "failure" presentations on the web in combination with the large number of common beliefs around negative memories in combination with evolutionary concepts the idea that evolution has selected for negative memory retention becomes very interesting.

People who remember past mistakes, or bad situations, and avoid them are more likely to survive.

Now that seems like a brain dead conclusion, yet, people commonly think that evolution selected for intelligence while the circumstantial evidence suggests that evolution selects for people whose memories of bad situations is better than others combined with a desire to avoid bad situations.

In other words, evolution selects for people who focus on failure and live in fear.

Guys like me, the "bulls in the china shop" who are "reckless" enough to continually tackle the impossible, the risk takers, are probably the result of a combination of recessive genes that minimize memories of past bad situations and maximize a desire for achievement.  Whatever achievement we have defined.

Not always the achievement we have told others we want.  If people focus on failure than people will want to "cut" others down to size so it is best to never share or allow people to understand the nature of an individuals success.

The advent of anonymous and hackers who are trying to pressure people into an avoidance behavior pattern are circumstantial evidence of evolution selecting for fear.  Their extortion based behavior suggests that they believe fear to be the primary motivator in human beings, which suggests that they are motivated primarily by fear.

I suppose we can call it avoidance behavior to make people whose primary motivator is fear better about themselves.

There is another set of circumstantial evidence for evolution selecting for cowardice and for courage being a recessive trait, the reliance of people on the opinions of others.  If people believe someone else is a "bad risk" that "bad risk" can be ostracized.  This is another indicator of avoidance behavior and remembering the "bad".

One of the attacks I have suffered under is an attack on my credit rating where some hacker does something to damage my credit.  While the actions of the hacker do not honestly reflect my integrity, avoidance behavior results in others taking negative actions against me.  As if I care.

This is behavior very similar to political propaganda.  People are placed in situations where they believe a falsehood and make decisions based on the false information.  When bad information leads to enough bad decision making whatever group is influenced by the decisions is damaged and even destroyed.

This makes accurate information important and yet hackers spend quite a lot of their time doing everything they can to provide false information.

Eventually the "information highway" will result in the destruction of the planet as the information becomes more and more corrupt and people make more and more bad decisions based on bad information.

Damaging one person, say someone who was considered one of the best, if not the best, in the world at their profession can set a technology back years.  Damaging any individual not influential in their field probably won't hurt much, but, the bad information builds up.  Garbage in, garbage out.

Bill Gates used Microsoft to impede technology development and as a result the "internet bubble" cost trillions.  It happened, I am not arguing with propagandists.  Bill Gates made billions by costing the world trillions.

Poor appraisals of mortgaged properties resulted in the "mortgage bubble" which cost trillions.  It wasn't banks, they trusted the Garbage In and as a result they got Garbage Out.

Politicians are elected based on propaganda and twisted information and as the information becomes more twisted the bad decisions based on trying to avoid bad situations become worse and worse.

It is all based on memories of bad situations and a desire to avoid them, but, too many people providing the information have different ideas of what "bad" is.  We all know there is a "good" and a "bad", we just don't define it the same way any more than we define success the same way.

When people who define "bad" in different ways and manipulate information to avoid bad situations the information becomes contradictory and people can't help but make bad choices based on the contradictory and incorrect information.

The only possible result is disaster. 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Hollywood hypocrisy

I just saw part of an old episode of Law and Order on TNT.  The episode was called "Blue Bamboo".  An attorney asked Jack McCoy if suspects should be transported across borders and tortured.  McCoy responded "Works for me."  This was first aired in 1994, the year after the first Trade Center Bombing.

This episode reminded me of a couple of other Law and Order episodes like "Memos from the Dark Side" where McCoy prosecutes a man for conspiring to torture people.

Hollywood propagandizes whatever they feel like.  Before 9-11 they propagandized torture as acceptable and after 9-11 they propagandized torture as unacceptable.

Truthfully I just find crap like this laughable, unfortunately a lot of people actually base opinions on fiction like Law and Order since there is truth mixed in with the fiction.  This is the way propaganda works.  Tell people something they believe is true and combine it with a fiction they don't know about.  Eventually people believe the fiction is truth.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Destroying the world, Obama style

The Obama admin has stepped in it now and I don't think there is any way out of it for either Obama or the United States.  Watching how everything unfolds over the next few years is going to be a blast.

I expect that, as usual, rather than admit how badly things have been screwed the United States will pretend things are actually going well and getting better.  How long that fantasy takes to crumble will be interesting.

I am not going into great detail because the perfect storm of economic and political stupidity that has gone so far as to be unstoppable would take too much time to explain. In a nutshell the elimination of disposable income and reduction in middle and lower income modality health care spending in the United States will cause a disintegration of the economy and the foreign policy credibility of the United States.

Free markets work well. Things like greed, those who create monopolies or artificially inflate prices destroy the free markets, and things like trade restrictions, like Obamacare, destroy the free markets, create the conditions for an economic disaster.

We saw the housing bubble create an economic storm. People blamed banks, and they were partially responsible. In reality it was more the real estate agents, mortgage brokers and housing appraisers at the bottom who lacked any kind of oversight and created the conditions which caused the disaster.

Free markets are markets which are not influenced. When people deliberately influence markets the markets are no longer free. Buyers of homes and mortgages depend on appraisals to determine values. If the appraisals can be influenced the market is no longer free, it is influenced.

When we step back and apply that understanding to the entire economy we begin to realize that free markets are gone. Over controlling or influencing of the economy is creating the conditions necessary to destroy the economy. Lots of people have been saying this for a very long time and for the most part I have disagreed. I'm afraid Obamacare and the manipulation of deficit/debt spending by the Obama admin have created conditions we cannot recover from.

That is not the real issue, long term sustainability is the issue. Economies come and go. Rome rises and falls. The British Empire rises and falls. Economic failure can and will be survived. The failure of the U.S economy will not be the disaster everyone is afraid of.

The real issue is that the world can't support more than about four billion people in any sustainable way.

That means the first step in a sustainable economy has to be a reduction in population. The Chinese recognized this and attempted to slow population growth. In my opinion they failed even though population growth was actually reduced. It wasn't enough and no one else in the world supported that policy. What happens as the rest of the people in the world realize that the only feasible solution is population reduction?

Let us speculate freely.......

Everyone has heard the conspiracy theories about how the CIA developed HIV and Ebola in Africa as methods to reduce the population. I doubt that happened, I think it ludicrous to believe such a thing. But what about the future?

Could the economic storm of the future create enough concern that a government or even non-government entity could release a virus that has a huge mortality rate?

I doubt it. Politicians tend to be control freaks and such a virus would be uncontrollable. As stupid as politicians believe people are I doubt if a virus with a 50% or better mortality rate which didn't kill at least 50% of the political leadership could be ignored by even liberal democrats much less the people of other nations. In fact, even if a plague occurred naturally the rumors of the CIA starting it would be so strong that other, nuclear weapon armed, nations would be unable to ignore them no matter how stupid the rumors are. In my opinion a global plague will result in nuclear attacks on the United States.

Will those who created the conditions for the coming economic disaster actually think logically?  Will politicians who can misdirect responsibility to someone else take control?

Suppose those in power somewhere decide that the only way to save the world is to create the conditions for a sustainable economy by reducing the population through the use of a plague. Suppose someone, China, Russia, whoever, decides that the only solution to the global sustainability crisis is to release a virus that becomes nearly random. Everyone blames the States. The North American coasts are nuked, mostly the East Coast, since the world needs the agricultural lands of the Midwest and wind patterns from nuking the west coast would destroy the Midwest.

Why do I think such a thing possible? Because politicians are control freaks and when things are totally out of control the last thing a control freak has is the ability to choose the time and place of their own demise.

Now that we have mostly eliminated the moronic politicians in the States from doing something this crazy who would? China, Russia, ????.

So where in the world would our protagonist start such a virus? Probably around Washington D.C. in the Maryland area. "An accidental release from a secret laboratory." A small nuclear explosion near Washington D.C. soon after the release of such a virus could be propagandized as a U.S. attempt at stopping a plague. With U.S. credibility destroyed any attempt to blame anyone else for either the plague or the bombing would result in even more international hatred directed toward the States.

The development of an anti-viral by either Russia or China or some branch of the W.H.O. would not be a surprise and neither would the inoculation of people in other nations coming first, before those who “started” the plague.  Politicians in other nations would be first on the inoculation list.

Scary fricking scenario.  Pretty insane.  I think I will just write a short science fiction story using that plot.  A story without a happy ending.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Tracking down the Bullsh*t in the Obama Admin

During the Obama administration the public debt has been increasing dramatically while deficit spending is dropping.  How can that happen?

It didn't make sense, what the fu*k was going on?

Then it hit me, the Fed stimulus.  Buying bonds to maintain low interest rates.  The Obama administration used the same accounting "magic" that Congress is using on the Social Security fund.

What the Obama admin and the Social Security fund are doing is pretty simple fakery and it doesn't rise to the level of actual fraud unless the money can't be paid back.

The idea is simple, turn cash into an asset so you can still spend the cash and maintain the illusion of financial stability.  The first step is to write an IOU or a check and then call it a bond.

A bond is a promise to pay money with interest on either a regular schedule or all at once.  Checks and IOUs, promissory notes, bonds, are all promises to pay money.

When a company has a promise to pay money on their balance sheet it is called an asset. The U.S. Government writes a check called a bond. The government then buys that bond from itself. Here is where it sounds tricky, but, this is all actually legal.

Lets say the government collects 800 million in taxes and they need to spend 1 trillion dollars to keep the government together. They write a bond for 500 million dollars. They buy that bond from themselves. Now the government has 300 million in one bank account, 500 million in another bank account and a 500 million dollar asset. The government has turned 800 million dollars into 1.3 trillion dollars.

Now they can borrow another 200 million dollars. The government has an entire 1.5 trillion dollars. They have borrowed 700 million dollars so the public debt increases 700 million dollars. The deficit is a little trickier.

The government spends 1 trillion dollars, but, because they have an asset on the books, the 500 million dollar bond, it looks like they spent only 500 million dollars so now they have a 300 million dollar surplus.

If any private organization did this they would be convicted of fraud and the corporate management would be sent to prison.

Friday, July 19, 2013

The Democrats, propaganda and stupidity

Anyone who regularly reads my blog knows that I think the Democratic party should disband in shame so the nation can develop a new political party that would really support civil rights and especially provide for majority of the people in the United States who earn less than 100K.  That is about 85% of us.

I saw some dork arguing the 6 biggest lies the GOP tells on You Tube.  What a joke, stupidity must be a major goal among some people.

The guy, Robert Reich, reuses his first reason for his third reason.  I guess because his intended audience doesn't have the attention span necessary to notice.

The 6 reasons are horse crap propaganda and have very little to do with reality.

1: reduce taxes on the rich, trickle down. Trickle down is just the way capitalism works. If we compare the percentage of total taxes paid by those making over 100K in 2012 to 2007 the tax burden is less in 2012 so the rich pay less taxes under Obama. I didn't read that the GOP wants to reduce taxes on the rich in the GOP political platform.

2: Cut government to create jobs, That would actually work, but, it wouldn't be useful. Cut government jobs and the services still have to be performed. Privatized jobs pay less so more people can be employed, but, consumer discretionary spending is reduced which actually hurts the economy. I did not read this in the GOP political platform.

3: Same thing as 1, taxes on the rich. About the only thing I see in this area in the GOP platform is their position on capital gains, the death tax, etc. Personally I think a zero tax on the first 100K of capital gains and a zero tax on the first 250K of the death tax makes sense for the middle class. Past those numbers I think normal tax rates should apply. Both parties disagree with me on that issue.

4: The Debt Bogey Man. The public debt has gone up every year. We have not had a surplus because we have always been in debt. The budget has not been balanced. As the debt increases the interest payments increase creating more of a burden. This isn't a myth and anyone who is in debt and keeps building debt knows this. The debt is in the political platform.

5: Social security is a ponzi scheme. Yes and no... Currently money from people who are paying into social security is being used to pay people who receive social security which is the definition of a ponzi scheme. The money deposited into SS was spent by congress. Congress writes an IOU called a T-Bill and then calls that IOU and asset so when the budget is "balanced" they have this check congress wrote to itself that balances the money they spent. In fact the IOU is "worth" more than they spent. This is only a real ponzi scheme if Congress fails in its obligation to pay SS, or declares bankruptcy in SS.

6: We need to tax the poor. Never heard anyone say that, didn't read it in the GOP political platform and can't see why anyone want to do this, it makes no sense in a consumer driven economy. Sounds like something people accuse others of just to make them look bad.

I went back and re-read both the Democrats and the Republicans political platforms.

What really annoys me about the Democrats is that the entire 32 pages reads like propaganda against the Republicans.  Imagine being able to quantify and qualify the complex political issues of the United States political system into 32 pages, half of which has nothing to do with the Democrats political position and everything to do with calling the Republicans the bad guys.  Okay, 32 pages I can read no matter how stupid the material.
This is the Democrats plan for rebuilding the middle class from page 2 of

Now read these paragraphs and tell me specifically what the Democrats plan to do between 2012 and 2016.

Rebuilding Middle Class Security
We’ve come a long way since 2008. The President took office in the middle of the worst economic downturn since the
Great Depression; that month 800,000 Americans lost their jobs – more than in any single month in the previous 60 years. On Day One, he took immediate action to stop the free fall and put Americans back to work. In the midst of the crisis, President Obama knew what Democrats have always known: that American workers are tougher than tough times. Since early 2010, the private sector has created 4.5 million jobs, and American manufacturing is growing for the first time since the 1990s.
The President knew from the start that to rebuild true middle class security, we can’t just cut our way to prosperity.
We must out-educate, out-innovate, and out-build the world. We need an economy that creates the jobs of the future and makes things the rest of the world buys – not one built on outsourcing, loopholes, or risky financial deals that jeopardize everyone, especially the middle class.
We’ve already made historic progress. States have more flexibility to raise standards and reform schools, more students are receiving grants and scholarships, and young adults can stay on their parents’ health insurance plans as they finish their education and enter the workforce. More working families than ever before have received tax cuts, and fuel-efficiency standards are doubling. The President cracked down on Wall Street recklessness and abuses by health insurance, credit card, and mortgage companies.
Our work is far from done. A crisis this deep didn’t happen overnight and it won’t be solved overnight.
Too many parents sit around their kitchen tables at night after they’ve put their kids to bed, worrying about how they will make a mortgage payment or pay the rent, or how they will put their children through college. We now stand at a make-or-break moment for families, and America faces a clear choice in this election: move forward toward a nation built from the middle class out where everyone has the chance to get ahead, or go back to the same failed ideas that created the crisis in the first place.

I ignored the last paragraph wich is a direct attack against the Republicans.  I am not interested in fighting, I want to know what the Dems are going to do to rebuild the Middle Class.  This section talks about things Obama claims to have done in the past and tells me nothing about the future.

If you want to read the 62 pages of the GOP platform:

So here we are today, with the Democrats, a political party with a racially motivated genocidal history that justifies its actions by bragging and attacking, but, doesn't tell anyone what their plans are.

Want to know what Obama did?  Drove the Public Debt UP incredibly.  Robert Reich argues that the public debt isn't a big deal, and he does have a point, but, the interest on the public debt is a killer so if interest rates increase the U.S. will be bankrupt unless our GDP just about doubles.

Check out the data from treasury:

Treasury doesn't give away *.csv or Excel or even publish graphs so copy and paste the numbers into a spread sheet:

You will need to calculate out the percentage from the previous year or whatever year you choose.

We all know that Bush messed up when he paid back the "surplus" to the US people and screwed up the 2001 budget.  We all know Obama messed up when he put together 800 billion dollars in grants for the Obama bailout.  The Bush bailout was all loans which were paid back, Bush learned something from the 2001 fiasco.

S0....look at those insane numbers.  Even if we ignore 2009 the numbers are pretty bad.

The public debt really has to be looked at with the GDP to understand the context so lets not get freaked out yet, but, when we look at some of my previous blogs like Rick Unger the Moron we can look at the tax income, the spending, the GDP and the national debt all in context and throw up because we are totally screwed.

Rick Unger and Robert Reichs are members of a genocidal political party following in the foot steps of the master propagandists of the genocidal political party that supported the "Final Solution" and their solution to the problems of the United States is bankruptcy.

Google and stupidity

Google deleted my blog for a while, apparently they hired some past Yahoo employees who are used to deleting whatever content they disagree with.  Truthfully I don't have any idea what happened, I just know it disappeared and cvame back.  For all I know the Obama admin asked for it to be removed or maybe Google cut a deal with the ghost of Genghis Khan.  Although what Genghis Khan would have against my blog I have no idea.

I complained and checked back after a week or so and here it is.

One of the big problems that confronts governments and businesses is that while all businesses and governments must maintain the right to remove customers (or allies) this right must be used judiciously or the organization will suffer from alienating their allies (or customers).

I'm just a guy so I figure if I run into a problem somewhere it means other people have also.  Here are some personal anecdotes.

I bought some wrenches from Montgomery Wards that had a life time guarantee.  I took a wrench back because it had some minor damage and MW refused to replace it because the damage was caused by my "mishandling" the tool.  Not true and I never bought tools from Montgomery Wards again.

I used to take my car to a service center at Montgomery Wards.  I pulled my car up on ramps and checked the underside before I took it in for some service.  I was particularly interested in the exhaust since it was a few years old.  I checked the car out and then took it in for a tire rotation, oil change and lube job (so sue me, I hate tracking down somewhere to recycle used oil).  I was told my CV boots were torn.  I knew they weren't since I had just had them replaced at another place about six months earlier and I had just inspected them.  Never went back to Montgomery Wards again.  About ten years later they were out of business.

I still buy tools at Sears, and I typically have watch batteries, watch work done at Sears.  I don't shop there for anything else.  Way too many issues with sales people and their "satisfaction guaranteed".  Twice Sears refused to honor their guarantee, many times sales people ignored me.  Sales went to commission and then sales people were arguing over who got my sale.  Too much, I quit shopping at Sears except for tools and watch stuff.

I used to use Yahoo boards a lot.  Yahoo did the same thing, alienating customers and I switched to Google.  Yahoo dropped and still can't get it back together and regain market share.

I figure if I feel like a company (or government) is alienating me that company is probably alienating other people also.

That isn't always true, I became fed up with Rite Aid and they didn't go bankrupt or experience large scale failure.  I went to Logan's Roadhouse and it was miserable, I never went back.  Sometimes problems are coincidence or are one-offs.

In general though, I figure if I am having a bad experience so are others and the first thing a corporation that is going to fail does is alienate customers.

Looks like Google isn't headed down that road yet, maybe they will be one of the companies that doesn't become arrogant and stupid.

Only time will tell.

Sunday, July 07, 2013

GDP, "trickle down" and the economy

President Reagan, or one of his speech writers came up with the term "trickle down economics" and a lot of us call that "piss on the people" economics.  The first President Bush called it "voodoo economics".

There isn't a problem with capitalism in this world, there is a problem with selfishness and greed.   Some people will accumulate huge amounts of private resources while other people go without.  Why?

Some people blame evolution and if the theory of evolution is accurate our species has actually bred itself to be selfish.

Study after study has shown that selfishness and the ability to disregard the welfare of others within a group are primary survival skills.  This skill is usually tempered by the fact that homo sapient sapient is a species which uses interdependent social systems to survive.  In other words, survival is based on the ability to be selfish, the ability to disregard the wellbeing of others as long as those others are available to provide survival support until the point at which the survival of "others" influences an individuals own survival.

Essentially the evolutionary theory tells us that we have bred ourselves such that people are going to help others survive as little as is possible without the others dying until the point at which our own survival becomes threatened.  At the point at which our own survival becomes threatened we will not only cease helping others we eat them.

So what do people need to survive?

That is actually an individual assessment.  For example, I have spent weekends living off the land.  Sometimes I eat very well, other times I have not.  I can survive without external support structures like trade.  Others require trade of some sort, the ability to exchange services for goods in some stage of preparedness.  Wheat may come in a sheaf, wheat may be threshed and come as seeds in a bag,  wheat may be ground and come in a bag as flour or wheat may be prepared with other items and be distributed as bread.  There are people comfortable with all of these forms of distribution.

Obviously if someone does not know how to bake bread their survival will require someone to prepare the bread for them.  If someone does not know how to grind flour...etc, etc.

Survival skills are based on an individuals ability to use the available resources.

The Donner Party is a great example, a bunch of people who knew nothing about foraging or hunting were trapped in an area where native foods abounded and yet they did not have the ability to utilize those resources so they killed and ate each other.

This is where the phrase, "its a dog eat dog world" came from.

If we accept that the theory of evolution is accurate then we have evolved to look out after ourselves first and once we have achieved what we individually require for our survival we help others survive by helping them have the minimum that we feel they require to survive.

If we examine income demographics across cultures and across the globe I believe that we discover the most selfish people accumulate the most and that they will generally provide minimal support for those which have the least.

Animals, like people, often fight for resources or social position.

This is obvious where we watch groups of social animals like wolves or geese.  Some group members accumulate more and other group members accept the bare necessities to survive.  Sometimes, during periods of shortage, the least members of the group are ostracized and excluded.  Without support of the group they usually, but not always, die.

Sometimes the ostracized form separate groups and attack other groups.

"hackers", "nerds" or "geeks" are an example of a socially excluded group which has developed resources and uses its abilities or resources in an animalistic way to attack and or exclude/ostracize other groups or other individuals.

Groups of bandits, groups of industrialists, all groups who bond together work in a similar fashion, attempting to establish their authority within the social heirarchy.

The over riding theme is one of the groups or individuals within a group or groups, deciding which members survive and which members are left for dead.
 Studying animals and cultures it becomes obvious that trickle down economics is an animalistic process inherited through the evolutionary process.

Should people default to such animalistic behavior?

We do, there is no doubt about that.  Should we?  Should we instead find ways to exploit human resources more efficiently?

We could.  The old NAACP slogan, "A mind is a terrible thing to waste" is a good example of an attempt to find ways to exploit human resources more efficiently.  In fact, working to utilize resources more efficiently is a survival mechanism in itself, one that has not evolved well.  Human beings, Homo Sapient Sapients, are a wasteful species.

When a wolf or a chimpanzee kills another animal it rarely makes fully efficient use of  the carcass.  Rarely do animals other than humans use the skins, the bones or other non-edibles as efficiently as humans do.  Are these animals more or less wasteful of resources than humans?

We could argue that the difference is in the ability to understand the waste and this is my point.

The selfish survival model is no longer evolutionarily required.  With the current resources available we could very easily support four to six billion people very comfortably.  Yet humans continue populating in a selfish desire to increase their survivability by increasing the number of family members to help support each other.

The first step in a non wasteful survival is to reduce the world population to one that can be supported, around 4 billion people.

The second step would be supporting and educating every one of those people to the point where the group can fully exploit the abilities of each of the individuals.

This is unlikely.  The probability is that humans will continue to behave as other animals do, expanding their population to the point where resources no longer support it and establishing a social hierarchy based on some individuals receiving more of the resources than others.

The problem is that, since humans have an expanded intellect,  we know these animalistic methodologies actually reduce the probability that our species will survive.  Yet we continue along the same path because of the selfishness of the group leadership and the basic animal instincts of these leaders to take first for themselves, especially in times of limited resources.

I have no doubt about it, unless the United States and the world begin a process of population control, more efficient utilization of resources including human resources and a more equitable distribution of resources among the global population the global social structure will crash.

How do I know this?  Because the same thing happens among all animals when the leadership becomes too greedy, acquiring too many of the resources for itself and leaving the rest of the group without.

Humans are easily tricked, unlike other animals, by their leadership so it may take longer than other groups of animals.  It will happen just the same though.

And the leaders won't care, they will just find other means to control the group and keep taking the best and the most for themselves, allowing their greed to control what portions of the kill trickle down to the rest of the pack.

Friday, July 05, 2013

Schroedinger's cat, ignorance and evolution

Schroedinger's Cat!
I'm not going to try and review or discredit the real science of dating fossils which is based on quite a few assumptions derived through inductive logic. For the most part this blog addresses ignorance and while the evolution of man is based primarily on circumstantial evidence, inductions and a refusal to participate in the scientific process many of these acts are not necessarily ignorance, just stubbornness.

Not all of it, them though, there is a lot of ignorance out there.

Schroedinger came up with an excellent way of expressing a huge problem in science.  Observation.  Schroedinger thought up a concept or hypothesis which described one of the inherent problems with the scientific method related to observation and logic.
Schroedinger suggested that we stick a cat in a box with a poison gas, close the box and put the closed box in a room. Is the cat alive or dead?
In pure science we have to admit that we don't know since we have not observed the cat.
Using the circumstantial evidence available we can induce that the cat is probably dead since it is unlikely that the cat can survive exposure to the poison gas. To find out if the cat is alive or dead we must make an observation. Once the observer pierces the closed room and the closed box the observer has become part of the conditions which are being observed. The acts associated with observing an experiment influence the experiment.
In pure science unless we can repeatably observe the outcome of an experiment we can not state “if X than Y”, rather we should say, “If X probably Y”. Many pseudo scientists, like Richard Dawkins, state that human evolution is a fact when it isn't. The adoption of the result of inductive logic based on circumstantial evidence as “facts” undermines science.
Let us look at a website, where we are told:

Carbon-14 dating helps us date fossils? That sounds interesting and I suppose that it may be possible some day, but, in reality that isn't true. Carbon-14 dating works by measuring residual Carbon-14 left in organic materials. As time passes the amount of Carbon-14 breaks down. To establish a date with Carbon-14 we measure the amount of Carbon-14 left in the organic material, the less Carbon-14 the older the material. At the current level of technology we can only date back about 60,000 years ago.

Skeletons of modern humans have been dated, using methods other than Carbon-14, back to around 200,000 years ago. Carbon-14 dating is not going to help us much with dating human evolution which requires our evaluation of evolutionary evidence which resulted in modern humans 200,000 years ago and consists of a fossil record going back millions of years.

Claiming Carbon-14 dating can be used to date fossils is an example of someone attempting to use a well established scientific method to validate assumptions that the method has nothing to do with.

There is a scientific rule called the rule of “super position” which states, essentially, the deeper something is buried the older it is. This allows people to determine or estimate relative dating of objects they discover. This sounds pretty obvious, but, it isn't always true and dating based on super position is based on probability. There is nothing wrong with this, unless, some ignorant idiot teaches people that the result of a dating analysis based on super position is a fact rather than a probability.

Science is often about probabilities rather than absolutes. There is nothing wrong with this until people teach that probabilities are absolutes.

I'll use a personal anecdote which illustrates the problem with assuming that probabilities are absolutes. My direct supervisor was an electrical engineer with a Masters and he spent four months working on a broken machine. He hired controls technicians from the company that built the controls. He just couldn't find the problem.

My supervisor's boss asked me to fix the machine and I did. My supervisor had assumed that the electrical prints were accurate. After he had worked on the machine for a couple of weeks I told him that the prints had to be wrong, he insisted they were all we had to work with. When my supervisor's boss asked me if I could fix the machine she asked how I knew I could fix it and I explained that the prints were wrong. She asked me how I knew and I told her that if the prints had been correct my supervisor would have fixed the machine. I used a multi-meter and checked every wire in the machine manually and found an unfused 24v power circuit that had shorted out. That particular circuit also powered the CNC controller unit. Problem solved.

People make assumptions, they assume probabilities are facts and then, much too often, those assumptions are wrong.

In my experience teachers often make statements of “fact” which are not true to “simplify” education. For all practical purposes 2+2 always equals 4 so students are told “two plus two always equals four”. This is a lie. There are some occasions, binary base number systems for example, where the number four does not exist.

If a teacher were to accurately teach that “two plus two usually equals four” it would open a dialogue concerning what the rules are for determining when “two plus two equals four” and when “two plus two equals ten”. This kind of instruction is often used when teachers do not believe their students are capable of understanding the nuances of the subject.

The same lies are told about many things including the evolution of humans. The evolution of humans is always going to be a theory since we cannot observe, unless someone invents a time machine, the evolution of humans.

Even if we create an experiment where we evolve humans such an experiment would only prove that humans could have evolved, it would not prove that humans did evolve.

But people still believe crap like “two plus two always equals four” or “humans and apes evolved from a common ancestor” even though neither of these are facts, just probabilities.

I am not saying that evolution of humans didn't happen, I'm just pointing out that only someone who is ignorant would claim an inductive probability is a fact and that many people try to use unrelated and well established facts to prove their assumptions.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Economics, greed and people who want to blame capitalists

Reagan called it "trickle down economics".  The rest of us call it "being pissed on".

The truth is that the world always has, and always will, run on capitalism and trade.  Even communist nations need to engage in capitalist trade with their neighbors.  No, it doesn't have to be that way, but, it is and it has since the first exchange of a pretty rock for sex began.

I was reading a really ridiculous book called "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man" which was supposedly written by a man who was trained by the NSA to be an "Economic Hit Man" or an EHM.  Its a pretty stupid book for the most part, filled with ridiculous economic suggestions like:

"Imagine if the Nike Swoosh, MacDonalds Arches and Coca-Cola logo became symbols of companies whose primary goals were to clothe and feed the world's poor in environmentally beneficial ways."  (used under Fair Use)

This is typical stupidity from people who don't understand how corporations work.  Here is the basic rundown on how it actually works.

Some people come up with a product idea, running shoes, hamburgers, a soft drink.  They work with investors to fund a way to produce the product.  Sometimes the investor is a government.  Sometimes the investor is a private person or group of people.

The people form a company and hire a bunch of other people to do stuff.  The people hired spend their money on stuff like houses and food and shoes.

In other words, and anyone who has taken a business or economics class and not slept through it knows this, corporations are already clothing and feeding the world's poor by giving them jobs.

Now don't think I approve of Nike or the rest of those fu*ked up shoe manufacturers who are paying sh*t wages in third world countries to people who stand ankle deep in acid making running shoes.  I think Nike and Apple and a lot of other companies who employ people under crap working conditions in third world countries should be ashamed of themselves.

That said, the people do have jobs so they eat.  For a while anyway because the third world governments attract scummy companies by not having things like disability or OSHA or social security.

If the moron who wrote "Lies about the US", I mean "Confessions of an asshole", darn, I keep typing that wrong.  "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man" had a clue he would be lobbying for the entire world to have OSHA like standards, Social Security Retirement, Disability, Workman's Comp, Health Care, etc.

Instead the idiot wants corporations to become public service organizations.

One of the other stupid things this author misses, because he didn't actually write most of this book, is that the United States changed to a Keynesian economic system in the 1930s when we went off the gold standard.  Private ownership of gold was made illegal in the States.

Around '69 or '70 the United States changed the way they printed money.  After 1933 and before about '69 the United States printed as much money as they had gold, kind of.  Its a little more complicated than that, but, that is close enough.  In '70 private ownership of gold was made legal and the price of gold jumped from $35 to over $800.  The United States printed more money.  The money is theoretically based on the stability of the United States Government, in reality the money is based on the value of government property, real and other.

The government has a little over 8 tons of gold stashed that is worth around 2.3 trillion depending on the value of gold.  The United States has about 10.5 trillion dollars in circulation.  The public debt is about 17 trillion dollars so we can pay about 12 cents on the dollar if the U.S. decided to pay off its debts in gold.

Of course the U.S. has other liquid assets besides gold.

The book misrepresents the liquidity of the United States economy and it misrepresents the actions of people in general.

In fact, the author seems to represent the United States government as some all powerful corporate entity.  It isn't.  Listen to Congress people on C-span sometime and you might be amazed at how stupid they are.  Senate, House of Representatives, Governors, Presidents, etc.  The people of the United States elects the best bull sh*t artists, not the best managers.

A "semi-conspiracy" like the one described in this book requires people smarter than the dork writing this book or the people I have seen in the U.S. government.

By focusing on the United States morons like this author miss the big picture, the thieves in their own nations who steal the people blind while they promise great things.  If I had to guess, I would think that more than one third world leader has faked his own death and run off with millions after robbing their people blind with false promises.

The truth is most people just believe what they are told so some idiot blames the United States and people grab the torches and attack the "monster" while the bad guy slips out the back door with the cash.

Monday, June 17, 2013

The word "Liberal" is typically used in a gramatically incorrect way

I can't control the way language is used or the way it develops.  I can point out grammatical errors that others make and they can point out grammatical errors I make, either to ridicule each other or to help each other become better writers and speakers. 

The movies often used grammatical and pronunciation errors for comic relief, but, this isn't comic relief.  This is real and serious and frightening and hilarious all at the same time.

Typically people won't care about facts, challenge their use of words and they will just become angry and defensive ridiculing anyone who dares to challenge their use of vernacular. 

There are occasions when people, in general, begin using terms that are grammatically nonsensical and I occasionally find this hilarious.

The word liberal comes from the Greek (maybe it is the Latin, can't remember exactly but that really doesn't matter) root Liber, meaning "free".  It is actually a very nice word.  When combined with the suffix al, meaning "other than" or "related to", we create a word, Liberal, meaning "related to free".

Strictly speaking Liberal does not refer to a person, but, a state or concept.  We can have a "Liberal Idea" or an idea related to the concept of "free".  We can have a "Liberal Education" or an education related to "free thinking" or "open thinking".

Strictly speaking a person involved in exploring "free", "free thought", "open ideas" would called a Liber-ist.  Strictly speaking if we call a person a "liberalist" that person would be "a person other than free".

But, language is not ruled by grammar.  Language is ruled by popular opinion and so grammatical corruptions such as the use of the word "liberal" to describe a persons belief come into popular use.  These grammatical corruptions become popular language and people use them in the most ridiculous fashion.  Linguistic experts have even thought to define dialects of English based on grammatical corruptions into a separate language called "Ebonics".

Now think about that for a minute. A Global Political Movement claiming superior education, intelligence and understanding which defines itself using a grammatically corrupted word worthy of Ebonics.

I find that pretty hilarious.

It actually becomes even better because there are other grammatical corruptions like “neoconservative”. Neo means “new”, Con means “together”, Serve means “take care of” or “maintain”, Ative means “those who work to” so “neoconcervative” means “new together we work to care for” or “new together we maintain”. Pretty stupid sounding word.

People who cringe at the misuse of “who” and “whom” or “then” and “than” will expound thoughtlessly using terms like Liberal and Neoconservative.

I find it frighteningly ridiculously, as if Leo Gorcy of the “Bowery Boys” has been training political commentators. At least Leo Gorcy usually played a happy, harmless kind of guy.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

The 80-20 rule

The Pareto Principle tells us that just about everything can be split along an 80-20 ratio.

Specifically 80% of events are caused by 20% of the causes, or as Pareto originally noted, 80% of stuff is owned by 20% of the people.

The world is going into a period of history where we are going to starve to death.  You've probably read about peak oil and the way we are using non-renewable resources at an ever increasing pace.  High oil prices are an attempt to reduce consumption to put this period of starvation off.

When will it happen?  I'll get to that, but, my predictions are only as good as the data I accumulate.

So, knowing this, what are the 20% doing?  In my opinion they are trying to build a global hierarchy where they are able to continue to live lavish lifestyles while the other 80% starve and die.

Personally, I think Obama Care is going to help this along by reducing the ability of the average person to afford health care.  Long story, but, essentially Obama Care is going to end up making health care an individual responsibility.

To accomplish this global "new world order" or hierarchy the first thing that has to happen is a reduction in the standard of living in developing countries.  Not an equalization because this would require that the majority of leaders and powerful business owners in the world help lift the populations of their nations to the standard of living enjoyed by the United States.

Instead the standard of living in the United States and other 1st world nations must be reduced and the 80% need to understand that they are not entitled to a good standard of living no matter how hard they work.  The standard of living must be determined by the 20%.

Is this some global conspiracy?  Not exactly, its just a lot of people working toward a similar goal driven by similar motivations.  Is a marathon a conspiracy?

The world can support about 4-6 billion people.

What is the time frame?  I put together a basic analysis and my curves crossed around 2070.  Don't put a lot of faith in that since I don't know everything.  I'd give it a plus or minus twenty years minimum.

I don't see a "hard" world government, more like a "soft" or "loose" co-operative group of powerful people in constant flux like all powerful groups.  A few powerful people at the very top and probably one person probably slightly more powerful than the others.

By not creating a single world government the 20% can maintain a "government" by group rather than submitting to a single leader.

Right now the 20% making up global leadership and power are already working together, have been since sometime after WW2.  This isn't new, it just has to change global politics and economics enough to secure their positions in a world that can not support its population.

Manifest Destiny

Manfest Destiny was a political plank in the platform of the Democratic party developed in the 1830s and 1840s justifying the expansion of the United States into the west and even into Canada and Mexico.

The Democrats were trying to push the boundaries of the United States into both Mexico and Canada.  In 1844 the Democrats wanted to expand into Canada and developed the campaign slogan "5440 or Fight" as part of their campaign for Manifest Destiny.  5440 referred to the 54th parallel in Canada.  The campaign slogans died out when the people of the United States refused to extend into Canada or Mexico.  In the 1850s the Republican party began and by 1860 the people of the United States elected a president far more concerned with internal politics of slavery than the external politics of expansion.  Manifest Destiny was dead.

The Monroe Doctrine was a political policy developed in 1823 by the United States to end imperialism by European nations in the Americas.

For some reason the Monroe Doctrine is often associated with Manifest Destiny.  I'm not sure why, probably by political propagandists trying to convince people that the United States is an expanding empire.

The Monroe Doctrine has been used to protect commercial investments by United States citizens.

Some people claim this is what happened with the Panama Canal.  I'm not so sure about that, the canal has resulted in the ability to reduce shipping costs of Asian goods into South American, North American and the Caribbean as well as reducing the cost of shipping goods produced in these regions to Asia.

There have been other uses of the Monroe Doctrine that are questionable, but, the Panama Canal benefits the entire world.

I read a lot of different things and I realized that most people read primarily fiction and what non-fiction they do read is very limited to specific ideologies in specific areas.  Rather than educating themselves broadly they educate themselves very narrowly.

This is not a problem with the United States, this is a problem with the world.

People become frustrated and they attack someone, anyone, to relieve their frustrations.  It almost always ends up being that no matter how many times people revolt they always end up putting people in power who oppress them and then they revolt again.

If I had a choice there would be no governments.  There would be no governments.  People would live in small agricultural villages.  Commerce would be conducted using sailing ships and caravans.  Anyone who tried to establish any form of political control would instantly die.

That ain't going to happen.  People want someone to tell them what to believe, what to do.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Greek Fire

I was just watching the movie "Time Line".  One of the things that interested me the most was Greek Fire, a weapon primarily used in naval battles.

Personally I think Greek Fire was a form of Potassium Sodium, created right on the ship using a very simple reactive still/pressure cooker.  The molten potassium sodium was ejected through a tube at the front of the ship.

Typically the reaction which creates potassium sodium, which reacts violently with water, is continuous, but, suppose there was no relief valve or outlet for the boiling potassium.  The pressure buildup would cause an ejection of the potassium sodium until it "burped".  The system would need some kind of valve at the outlet tube to allow pressure build up.

Maybe once I get my anthropology degree I will see if I can find funding to build such a system using ancient materials and technology.

I think I can cast the pressure cooker/reactive still using a lost wax investment casting process.  The pressure relief valve could be something as simple as a heavy copper ball contained at the top, maybe even with some kind of spring.  The valve could be a tapered investment cast bronze or brass system using copper seals with a screw at the bottom which tightened the valve against the copper seals.

I know a very cool professor who is an expert in the casting field who might be able to help.

I know it sounds like I just gave away everything, but, it would take an engineer like myself with the support of a chemical engineer and a casting expert to pull this off.  It has not happened in many years and I doubt if it is going to happen any time in the near future.

And this idea is now copyrighted :-)  If some jerk steals it I can establish I published it first.

Moronic script kiddies

Script kiddie morons are the biggest problem in hacking today.

I used to have a pretty open FTP server, still do although now it is so hidden no one can find it.  Nothing special, least amount of security I could get away with.  There are guys who run similar servers using Live distros so moronic script kiddies can't trash the system.  I tried that, the system rebooted itself every few hours and that worked okay.  Eventually I went with a different system that I am obviously not going to discuss here.

One guy I know actually hard wired a small, hidden, computer into a hotels network.  The system runs on a live distro, read only disk.   Very cool system, he has access to it, and the network.

Sometimes I run a bit torrent server, not often anymore.  Script kiddies kept hacking the system using the security holes in bit torrent.  That usually wouldn't bother me since I didn't keep any files, except legal bit torrent files, on that system, but, they kept trashing the system.  I didn't feel like installing a second DVD drive on the system to run a read only system.  I wiped that system and use it very rarely these days.

I don't have any data worth stealing on any computer.  The only reason to hack my system is so someone can gain experience in hacking.  The problem is losers who gain access to a system and then trash it for fun, like kids breaking into a house and smashing everything.

So what?

The problem is that people become really annoyed when someone breaks into their home and trashes stuff.  That means the law enforcement community has to do something to catch these guys.  In the process computer security becomes better and better.

Why is that a problem?

Because people have to learn.  Sure, a lot of us build our own home networks, wooden boxes with stacked motherboards and power supplies.  Then we practice various techniques in metwork management and security.  Facebook stole that idea and improved it to create the Open Compute which is very cool.

The problem is our networks are only as good as we are and when we start off we really are not that good.  Once we get the basics down we learn more by doing basic stuff on web networks, web servers and web workstations.

As security becomes better there are fewer openings for hackers to learn without getting caught.

Eventually there will be a crossing of script kiddie idiocy and law enforcement capability and when that happens more morons will be arrested and fewer people will learn to hack.  Skilled hackers will become more cautious of working with young hackers because they don't want to get busted.

That sounds good, Darwinian even.  Kind of, the problem is that even those who become the best, especially those who become the best, make more mistakes and learn more.

What will happen is that only people who are so detailed oriented they make no mistakes and take no chances survive.

This means that the creative hackers, those who learn from taking chances and break open new frontiers will be eliminated before they get a chance to become great.

Eventually hacking will stagnate.

How do I know this?  Because history repeats and morons refuse to learn from history.

How long will it take?  Not that much longer, another five or ten years probably, maybe as long as twenty but I doubt it.

The nice thing about that is when it happens guys like me will be able to install servers that use the most basic security.  FTP servers using common passwords, proxy servers, PTP protocols which allow mesh networking creating anonymous nodes.

Sure, there are tons of those systems out there today and moronic script kiddies are screwing them up all the time.