Sunday, January 27, 2013

Entitlement and success.

The United States was built on a tradition of entitlement.  Europeans thought they were entitled to land that was already settled by Native Americans.  Europeans felt they were entitled to the labor of slaves.

The United States government has spent hundreds of years telling other people how to live.  From slavery to forbidding Indians from speaking their language to laws concerning sexual morality to pressuring other nations to accept U.S. policy using economics and threats of violence the United States has behaved much like an entitled and spoiled child.   

Today that entitlement continues in traditions such as eminent domain and authorities taking what they please from citizens.

There is an anti-hoarding law that allows the government to take what it pleases in an emergency.


If the cops want to seize something from someone right now they have to go to a judge to get a search warrant and they are only allowed to seize what is specified in the court order or search warrant.  This is the due process required by the fourth ammendment.

In an "emergency", the "failure to prepare does not constitute an emergency" kind of entitlement emergency, the police do not need a warrant to seize property.

The idea is that people have no right to prepare for themselves and their loved ones because everyone, especially those in authority, are entitled to have what they believe they need to survive.

I expect what will happen eventually is that a national emergency will create a totalitarian system of law where authorities feel entitled and empowered to do what they please.

This is what many hackers do today, it is what Anonymous does.  The difference between guerrilla warfare and being an entitled scumbag is discipline.  Jack booted thugs loot from wherever they please and disciplined guerrilla soldiers don't.

I think the government of the United States is moving more and more toward the "entitled jack booted thugs" and farther way from discipline government.  Others, like Anonymous, believe the same thing and they are attacking the entitled, jack booted thugs using the same rules of entitled elitism that the jack booted thugs have used against others.

Like the United States governments entitled elitists who attack whom they please without fear of reprisals Anonymous has done so in the past, kicking down the virtual doors of the cyber homes of those they disagree with to censor voices and destroy lives.

I don't see much difference between the two, they both have agendas and they are both don't care who they hurt to achieve them.  Both do things I approve of an disapprove of.

Recently though, Anonymous seems to be moving to a disciplined organization attacking specific targets to achieve specific goals.

There is a story of a general who was very strict and an emperor who was very lenient.  The emperor asked the general how to be respected.  The general told the emperor to have people who did not obey him killed.  The emperor became very strict while the general became forgiving.  The people became angry with the emperor and killed him.  They need a strong, kind leader and because the general had become so kind the placed him on the throne.

I don't know if this ever actually happened, but, it sounds good.  If Anonymous, like the general in the story, can become a group people can trust to wield power and authority with discipline and justice, Anonymous could win this conflict because the United States government is corrupt and entitled.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Anonymous is being hypocritical again, but, in a "good" way.

Anonymous is being hypocritical again, demanding a free Internet while they work to censor the Internet.  This time though they are going after a government website and not a University or an individual and that makes a difference to me.

There are times when violence and breaking the law are the only methods that can be used.  The United States fought a war against slavery.

I know people claim it was a tariff war, or a war about states rights.  That makes no sense.  The South wanted tariffs to make their cotton competitive with cotton from North Africa and Europe.  Who did the South want to buy their cotton?  The textile mills in the North and in England.  If the South formed a new nation and charged tariffs on imported cotton, how would that help them sell cotton to textile mills in the North?  How was states rights going to help them sell their product?

John Brown had it right, a couple years later the nation fought a war against slavery.

Lincoln fought a war oppressing the South to relieve the oppression of slavery.  Sometimes hypocrisy is a must, but, I don't believe burning Atlanta helped the cause.  In fact Southern landowners made fortunes selling lumber to rebuild the city and went right back to oppressing Blacks after Atlanta was rebuilt.

Disrupting communication is censorship.  Trying to pretend that attacks on communication resources are anything but censorship is stupid.

The difference between Lincoln or John Brown and Anonymous is that Anonymous is being very hypocritical, demanding a censor free web and then becoming the censors.  Who they censor is very important.

I understand the thought behind the action.  These people are not fighters, they are hiders.  People who can't fight in the open, not even guerrillas.

They feel they need to do something and since the only thing they know is communications technology they are going to disrupt communications.  A group against censorship that can fight using forms of censorship, disrupting communications and creating chaos.

They can also release data and allow people to study and learn for themselves.  I doubt if people will, but, releasing data, the way wikileaks did, can help.  My nephew was on a corporate security watch list released by wikileaks.

Like anyone else who commits an act of terrorism, a massacre at a theater or a school or an embassy or an office building, these people believe they have no other choice.

As long as Anonymous can focus on the disruption of government communications operations, like actual soldiers attacking an opposing force instead of terrorists attacking civilians or bullies preying on the weak, I believe that people can support them.  It is an attack, a specific and well targeted attack.

The government has unlimited resources, but, we are not talking about quantity here.  We are talking about quality.  It won't matter how much money is tossed at Anonymous, they can be a multi-headed hydra.

There is a story of a king who hired a man to walk behind him during parades to remind the king that the king is only a man, subject to the rules of men.  Against a decadent, immoral and disgustingly corrupt institution like the DOJ Anonymous is the reminder that the DOJ is not above the moral intent of law.

Laws written to create an adversarial system of justice that
protects the rights of people, not an adversarial system using money and power to usurp those rights.

A court clerk once told me, "we make the rules".  Courts don't make rules, courts interpret rules.  Attorneys with deep pockets count on money to prevent people from fighting them.  These attorneys bully people who can't match government resources.  Government attorneys break laws knowing the accused can't afford the fight and people without resources are railroaded into prison.

Guerrilla snipers target high ranking officers of the opposing forces.  I believe that Anonymous would get the most mileage by hacking high ranking D.O.J attorneys as well as the DOJ institution.  Not legal secretaries or their families or talking heads vomiting their political ideologies, Anonymous needs to launch specific attacks on the officers of as well as the opposing force.

It is hypocritical, somewhat.  All wars are.  Carpet bombing creates enemies.  Specific targeting can reduce collateral damage and increase support.  The less collateral damage, the more support.

Every target Anonymous chooses has to be specific and they have to get a handle on the scumbags in the ranks raping and pillaging the countryside, creating opportunities for the opposing force to re-establish themselves.

I love this attack.  It is specific, it has goals, it is against an opposing force that has been deliberately misusing its authority for many, many years.

One again Anonymous has done something I believe in.  I'm not saying it was right any more than I believed releasing the rape video was right.  I'm saying that the USSC was a legitimate target in a guerrilla war against the misuse of government authority.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Flashlight crap on other blogs.

I was just reading on someone else's flashlight blog that had a bunch of flashy pictures that explained a lot about the components in a flashlight and very little about flashlights.  The writer explained that a good flashlight will always light and should never need to banged against your hand to work.  Total Bullocks.

Once again all flashlights are about electrical connections.  Any flashlight that depends on spring loaded contact will have corrosion issues and banging it against your hand can help it work.

WTF does that mean?

Most, not all flashlights, depend on wire springs that provide pressure to improve electrical contact between the various parts of the flashlight.  The tension of the spring is important.  The stronger the spring the more likely there is to be contact between the various components.

Lets look at a typical 2D cell flashlight, cheap, expensive, whatever.  The vast majority have a wire wound, helical spring, at the "bottom", two batteries, a switch, a bulb holder with a metal plate on the bottom and a bulb.

Everything made of metal corrodes, slowly for some things, very slowly in the case of gold and iridium.  The spring, the tops and bottoms of batteries, the metal piece on the bulb holder and even the body of the bulb.  That corrosion creates resistance.  The resistance causes the flashlight to stop working.  People used to carry steel wool or a scrap of leather to clean flashlight connections.  The corrosion resistance is better these days so people don't do that as much.

When you bang a flashlight against your hand, any kind or brand or expense of flashlight, the rubbing between the various components can scrap away corrosion and make the flashlight work.

Here is the funny part, corrosion depends on the materials used, the amount of humidity and if the moisture can reach the surface.  A cheap flashlight with cheap batteries and a cheap bulb can end up having nearly "perfect" connections which prevent the corrosion from forming.  An expensive flashlight with good batteries and a bulb can end up having poor connections.  The issue is manufacturing variables.

Realistically the probability have having excellent connections is better with a well made flashlight, like a Maglite, good batteries like Duracells and Maglite bulbs is better than a cheap flashlight.

Lets toss in a way for you to build a really bright, long lasting LED flashlight fairly cheaply.

First thing you need is a decent AA flashlight with a standard PR style bulb.  There are lots of these, buy one you like the looks of, that looks like it has a good switch.

The next thing you need is 2 14500 Li-ion batteries.  These are 3.6 or 3.7 volts.  These can run some money, I get mine on e-bay fairly cheaply.  Get 4 and a charger if you use your flashlight a lot.

The last thing you need is a really good "3 watt" LED bulb.  You can buy these on Amazon, or even at your local Walmart.  The bulb will run you 15-20 bucks.  Make sure you buy the bulb that handles up to 9 volts.  Some are made for 3.6 volts max.

The 14500 batteries are the same size, about, as AA batteries but they put out twice as much voltage.  Two 14500 will put out as much voltage, about, as five normal batteries 1.5v batteries.  You could use a bulb from a 5 cell Maglite in your new flashlight and the plastic reflector would last minutes.  The plastic reflector will melt.  I'm told the Garrity G-Tech cheap AA flashlight has a metal reflector and if so that would be a good thing to have.  I have not found one yet.

Put the "3 watt" led in the flashlight you purchased and then put the 2 14500 batteries in the flashlight.

My experience is that when using 7.2v or 7.4v the LED bulb will not melt a plastic reflector as long as you don't use the light more than about 30 minutes at a time and you let it cool between uses.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Archaeology and Abandonded Cities

I'm taking a class in basic archeology right now and I am throughly disgusted with all the theories about why archaeological sites were abandoned.

I can you why they were abandoned.  There was a problem.  Why problem?  Essentially there are two reasons cities are abandoned, economics and disaster.

Economics means that previously available resources that provided for support of the city have declined or failed.  Abandoned "boom" towns are created when, silver mines, coal mines, niter mines running out or the market for the resource disappears.

A disaster means earthquake, plague, volcanic eruption, anything which makes people feel as if they can no longer live in the area.

Political problems lead to revolutions, not abandonment.  Detroit is not abandoned as much as some white supremacists like to pretend it is.  Is Detroit thriving?  No, but it isn't dead either.

To figure out why people abandon cities we need to look at why people abandon cities.  Look at the ghost towns, the abandoned cities of today and we can learn why cities are abandoned.  Once we understand the reasons why people abandon cities today we can systematically eliminate the various possibilities until only one remains.

There is another kind of disaster that I think probably caused the desertion of some major cities of the past, although, it would be difficult to prove.  Population pressure causes pollution.  I believe that the water supply of some ancient cities became polluted and caused what seemed to be a plague on the city.  People left because they could no longer stay.  Overtime the ecology cleaned up the problems.

Now that the basic inductive logic is over we can address some speculations.:-)

I'm not sure it would have taken very many people to die for people to leave.  How many deaths does it take for a group to migrate?

Rome was all but abandoned because the water supply was destroyed.  If population pressure polluted the water supply it could have driven people out of cities.

Population pressure also creates the potential for an actual plague.

Recently archaeologists have begun blaming a volcano for the abandoning of the Mayan population centers.  I think it is possible that smoke or volcanic ash was the source of pollution that made required resources unavailable.

Designing the "perfect" flashlight

My perfect flashlight would have an aluminum body.

The battery holder would be attached to a sealed switch switch and the LED bulb using a slide in connector with contacts made of iridium.  The battery holder could be a simple flat plastic rectangle like many battery holders are.  It would hold a single battery.  The end of the batter holder would have two short prongs hidden inside a protective hood.  The battery box would slide into the flashlight from the bottom.  I would think a 26650 or an 18650 Li-ion rechargeable.  The battery box could slide into a charger.  A second battery box that held two AA or AAA could be included.

The battery would drop in between two flat spring steel made from iridium.  Nothing to do about the battery contacts except include a piece of scotchbrite in the body of the flashlight.  The AA or AAA battery box could use cheap wire springs, but, flat iridium springs would work :-)

The LED would be able to use the body of the flashlight to dissipate any heat.

The bottom of the flashlight would be a slip on rubber end cap that would make the flashlight water resistant.  The end cap could be something like the slip on tips for a cane or a walker, although it could be rectangular rather than round.  Round is easier   There would be a grove for an o-ring near the bottom of the body of the light.  The water resistant seal would be between both the rubber of the end cap and the o-ring.

The switch would be in the body of the light near the bulb. It would have a cover of some kind so it could not be turned on automatically.  If the flashlight were round it could have a friction twist cover that used o-rings to provide the friction.

 That should make a ridiculously expensive flashlight that no one would buy because they wouldn't understand how cool it really is.

Batteries, Flashlights, Ignorance and Capital Investment

A while back I wrote a blog discussing flashlights and how flashlights are all about the connection between the battery, the switch and the bulb.  I went into detail in that blog, but, I can sum it up easily.  Battery connection surfaces, springs, bulb connection surfaces and switch connection surfaces are all subject to corrosion.  The cheaper the flashlight, the more batteries involved, the more problematic the corrosion issues.

Sealed rechargeable flashlights with solid state lighting such as LEDs are hands down the most reliable flashlights.

The next most reliable flashlight has a sealed solid state bulb, a sealed switch and one battery.

Next comes just the sealed switch, a standard bulb and a single battery

Then comes a sealed switch, standard bulb and multiple batteries

Finally comes the unsealed switch, standard bulb and multiple batteries.

Batteries are all about connections, the more unsealed connections the less reliable the flashlight.

That is pretty simple electronics and logic.

When a flashlight is dim or goes out, someone bangs it in their hand and it comes on because the contacts in the flashlight changed, the motion made surfaces rub and the contact improved.  Sometimes doing this will break the filament in an incandescent bulb and the light is toast.

Think about springs for a second.  Who hasn't seen a rusty spring somewhere?  Springs move, plating or paint flakes off and the spring corrodes or rusts.  Ever try cleaning rust off a wire spring?

I like flat spring steel springs in flashlights.  They are very rare, but, they can be found.

Eveready used to make a cheap, flat 2XAA flashlight that was nice because it used flat steel springs which could be cleaned.  The switch sucked and it was hard to reach the springs in the bottom of the battery compartment.

Another company used to make a 2XAA flashlight that required a screw driver to take apart.  The switch was not great, people would lose the screw changing the batteries.

I had a sliding side flashlight that had wire springs.

Sometimes I think the people building flashlights are really clueless.  The reality is building a custom flat spring for the end cap of a Maglite would be expensive and the vast majority of people out there are ignorant of the benefits so the investment in such a spring would not have any return.

Maglite could replace the little foam bulb holder in the endcap with a scotchbrite pad that people could use to clean the contact surfaces when they needed to.

Would replacing the springs and the foam have any return on the investment?  Would it help sell flashlights?  No.  People wouldn't understand.  Using the scotchbrite pad would make it lose the springy protection for the bulb and people would be annoyed so they would never use it.  How about putting a simple, small round hunk of scotchbrite on top of the bulb, inside the spring?  I already do that, I'm sure others do too.

Look at the flashlights at any store.  Think about all those connections that could corrode and screw up the flashlight.

Sometimes I ask people about flashlights.  My brother for example.  What is a good flashlight?

People describe brands but no one tells me what to look for in a flashlight, except "quality".

So go to a store and look at the flashlights.  Does the $20 flashlight have better springs than the $5 flashlight? Is the switch sealed or is it cheap and crappy?

Ever think about holding a flashlight while you are walking or working?  I hold flashlights with my mouth quite often.  Can I hold the flashlight in my mouth?

How bright is the flashlight going to be?  How long will the batteries last?

Do you know why the stats on how long batteries will last in a flashlight are not published?  Because corrosion on the connection surfaces of batteries (and springs) is a variable that manufacturers cannot control.

So what does "quality" mean to the person who is giving someone else advice about a flashlight?

We could replace the springs and battery contact surfaces with iridium.  Iridium does not corrode and would be great in flashlights.  It runs about $1,000 to $1,200 bucks an ounce right now.  Would you pay an extra $50 bucks for a flashlight with springs that can't corrode?  Would advertising that issue mean anything to the vast majority of people?

The military uses a lot of gold contacts to reduce corrosion but contacts still get dirty, causing increased resistance and decreased battery life.

Flashlights are a good metaphor for most things in life.  They are really simple, yet interestingly and infinitely variable.  Most people don't think of spring tension or contact corrosion resistance when they buy a flashlight.  Consumer quality is usually a subjective perspective.

People are ignorant about most things and we make decisions in ignorance.  People criticize our decisions, and I have typically found that the people criticizing don't know any more than the I did when I made the decision.  They just think they do.  Occasionally, like me, they know what they are talking about.  But!  Does it matter?

Suppose ten million people read this blog and start looking at flashlights critically?  How long will it take flashlight manufacturers to build better flashlights?

Never.  A couple manufacturers, Maglite and Scotchbrite, might incorporate some changes in design or marketing, BUT, 10 million is a drop in the bucket when we are talking about a world wide market of between 6 and 7 billion.  Capital Investment will still follow the majority of subjective consumers and we are still going to have to look at flashlights in the store and make guesses about which one will be "best".

Monday, January 14, 2013

Hypocrisy and Anonymous

You have to love people who are openly hypocritical.

Anonymous removed the published content from MIT's website and posted several things, most of which I agree with, including:

"We call for this tragedy to be a basis for a renewed and unwavering commitment to a free and unfettered internet, spared from censorship with equality of access and franchise for all."

The tragedy here is the suicide of a man who made "secret" government data public.  Truthfully, that specific situation is something else I agree with.

Does it occur to Anonymous that by censoring what MIT had published they are doing exactly what they want to stop?

 Do they think that by being censors they can somehow stamp out censorship?  If that isn't hypocritical I don't know what is.

Here is another good one:

"We call for this tragedy to be a basis for greater recognition of the oppression and injustices heaped daily by certain persons and institutions of au"thority upon anyone who dares to stand up and be counted for their beliefs, and for greater solidarity and mutual aid in response"

I believe that what this actually is saying is that people should be able to stand up for their beliefs without being afraid of ridicule or retribution.

Isn't MIT and many others standing up for their beliefs by publishing what they believe and along comes Anonymous to censor in retribution.

Here is another one:
"We call for this tragedy to be a basis for reform of copyright and intellectual property law, returning it to the proper principles of common good to the many, rather than private gain to the few"

Can't say anything bad about this.  Copyright laws should be twenty years, the same as patent laws.

"We call for this tragedy to be a basis for reform of computer crime laws, and the overzealous prosecutors who use them."

Computer crime does need to be reformed, and people who attack, censor, invade privacy and destroy peoples lives should go to jail.

In the end Anonymous is just as hypocritical and ignorant as everyone else.  What bothers me is not when someone is hypocritical, all of us are.

I believe it was wrong of Anonymous to invade the privacy of the assholes who raped the girl in Ohio and publish the video bragging about the rape.  I am also damn glad they did it.

Hypocritical?  You bet.  I know I'm being hypocritical.  I aspire to things I do not always achieve and I am constantly working on becoming a better person.  People are not perfect, get over it.

To do become better we have to know when we screw up.  We have to be consistent in our words and actions.  Anonymous isn't.  I don't think most people know or even want to know how ignorant and hypocritical they themselves are and Anonymous isn't any better.

Is some of what they are doing going to make the world a better place?  Probably, I think the the Ohio rape video is an example.

I can justify torture the same way.  It's okay to censor someone if they participated in a "greater wrong" and we can use the same logic for torture, its okay to torture someone if they participated in a "greater wrong".

That takes an awful lot of judgment and an awful lot of ego to enforce that judgment on others.

Talking is useful, negotiating is useful.  There comes a time when talking has to stop and people have to act.

Is doing that which must be stopped a useful action?  History will tell us.  I don't believe so.

Personally I think Anonymous could have gotten their message across without censoring the original content of the publication and I think that would have communicated their message much more effectively.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

America, Bigotry and Consistency

People are inconsistent.  America is inconsistent.  The United States is inconsistent.

Get over it.

People have a duality of nature.  They want freedom.  They want security.  The battle between these mutually exclusive natures creates conflict and conflict is sometimes violent.

We could drive around in tanks and make the speed limit 5mph and no one inside a vehicle would ever be killed in an automotive accident.  Pedestrians and buildings might suffer though, tanks have a lousy field of view.

Both freedom and security or safety are subjective ideologies based on perspective.

Some people think guns are dangerous.  I don't.  I see guns as being machines.  Machines are as dangerous as the operator who uses them.  Drop a bunch of ball bearings on the ground and then run a lawn mower over them and we have something very dangerous.  Run a lawnmower over a gravel driveway and "blam".

Subjective opinions, and some objective opinions, are capable of being swayed through the use of propaganda.

Was the United States a place where millions fought against slavery or was the United States a place where people were enslaved?

Both actually.  There was slavery in Brazil, Venezuela and Argentina.  These places didn't fight wars against slavery.  Is the United States on higher or lower moral ground?

I don't think the United States is morally superior or morally inferior.

The United States is a democracy that changes as public opinion changes.

When farming in the Americas was primarily large plantations slaves were needed because there was no mechanization and there were no itinerant agricultural workers.  Labor was needed to plant and harvest these large plantations.  Slaves were being sold in Africa.  Labor was needed.  Slaves were purchased and put to work in the Americas.

During the mid 1800's the industrial revolution, family farm and a population large enough to support itinerant agricultural labor developed.  Slavery was no longer an answer, the cost of slaves became an economic problem.  In the United States we fought a war against slavery.  In other American nations slavery withered away economically without the costs of a war.

Most of the people in the United States hated slavery so much they were not willing to allow it to wither away naturally the way it had in other places and the way it did in other American nations.

People in the United States hated slavery so much they fought a war to destroy it.

Was it stupid to fight a war?  Are Blacks in other American nations better off than Blacks in the United States?

(Personally I find the discussion of race to be racist, but, racism exists and if we don't discuss it openly in the light it breeds like mold in the dark)

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Slaves, economics and stupidity

This isn't an excuse or justification for slavery.  This is an explanation of how it happened and how we can avoid future problems.

Slavery started in Africa because people started in Africa.  Maybe the Garden of Eden was in the Middle East, but, I think it more likely the Garden of Eden was in Africa.  In any case slavery started where people started.  Slavery has not ended.

The big attraction in the Americas was land that could be used for agriculture to feed the growing populations of Europe.  Yes, cotton and tobacco became important cash crops and I won't argue about the necessity of feeding Europe.  In any case the big draw in the Americas was agricultural land.

There wasn't any machinery.  There were no itinerant pickers.  There was no seasonal labor force.  Lots of land and very few people to work it.

At first the people who wanted to grow a crop tried to use indentured servants.  That didn't work so well.  The indentured servants worked a few years and then went off to get their own land which created an exponential need for people to plant and harvest crops.

It takes a certain kind of risk taking behavior to leave behind everything someone knows and travel to someplace that one knows almost nothing about.  That risk taking behavior is probably hereditary.  There is something passed from parents to children that encourages aggressive, risk taking behavior.  Some kind of predisposition to aggressive, risk taking behavior.

Somewhere along the line someone figured out they could buy slaves in Africa and sell them in the United States.  Slavery had been going on in Africa a long time.  The people in Africa were used to the ideology of slavery.  People became slaves, if they didn't like it they ran away and found their way home.  Native Americans or Indians had similar systems of slavery.  The advantage of African slaves was that they had no where to run to.

There is another issue too.  Just as aggressive, risk taking behavior is probably hereditary submissive behavior is probably hereditary.  The aggressive risk takers in the African populations were killed off.

So how do we avoid the mistakes of the past in the future?

Pretty simple, we do not take away the civil rights of people just because there is some perceived benefit.

Any attack on the civil rights of a people, any removal of civil rights from a people creates a slippery slope which can only lead to oppression.

We justify treating people badly,we justify stratification of society, we justify oppression.

There are billions of reasons to justify the oppression of people and I can argue them all.  I can argue against homosexuality dozens of ways.  I can argue racism and ethnocentrism.  I can argue against allowing people whose intelligence is insufficient to vote.  I can argue for almost anything I find repugnant.

There is only one reason I can use to argue against oppression or discrimination.  It's wrong.  Oppression, the violation of a person's civil rights, is wrong.

It's wrong when Anonymous does it.  It is wrong when Jullian Assange does it.  It is wrong when Andrew Jackson did it.  It is wrong when Joe Biden does it.  It is wrong when I do it.

Violating people's civil rights is just wrong and stupid.

Biden the moron

Biden is wacked.

What the government is moving toward is the subjective elimination of the Right to Keep and Bare Arms using whatever popular social stratification stereotypes people want to use.

When the right to vote was problematic the Democrats created Jim Crow laws, grand father clauses and other ways to prevent undesirables from voting.  Joe "Bring back Jim Crow" Biden is looking to create a process where subjective opinions about people by "authorities" can be used to take away a persons constitutional rights.

The due process clause will be honored, the same way it was for Jim Crow laws, be allowing the person to challenge the stripping of their civil rights.  It just takes money and a lawyer willing to buck the system.

Think about it for a minute.  Homosexuality used to be classified as a mental illness, when homosexuals were social pariahs.  What group is the social pariah of the future?  What groups are unpopular with liberal demophytes today?

Will your life style or your attitude be considered a mental illness?

I once had a social worker tell me how violent and inappropriate football was.  Will people who engage in and enjoy watching violent and inappropriate sporting events become mentally ill?

Suppose someone is caught at an underground fight, either as a competitor or a spectator?  Will that person be judged "mentally ill" or "potentially violent"?

A persons civil rights should never be taken away with out due process.  In fact, I believe that no persons rights should be taken away without a trial by jury.

Something else Biden is doing is working to create a new deadly black market to replace the black market in recreational drugs.  Making stuff illegal always creates an uncontrolled black market.  When alcohol was legalized drugs were made illegal so there could be a big' violent and lucrative black market.  Now that people are beginning to recognize that we should legalize recreational drugs Biden and the rest of the scum bags in government need to conspire with bad guys to create a new popular black market.  That very deadly and very lucrative black market will be in guns.  I'm sure Biden and Obama and others will make a ton of money from that black market and the deaths the market causes.

Society will always be stratified.  It doesn't have to be, but, people are always looking to pretend they are themselves better than others.  Groups work to oppress each other in constant competition to become the "alpha" group.  It is pretty sick, but, that is society.  We don't have to like it.  We can work to change it (not by pretending we have the right to judge others the way Anonymous and Biden want to) by accepting others for who they are.  We also have to accept the current reality.

The reality is that scumbags like Joe Biden and Anonymous and Al Queda are not going to accept people for who they are.  The inability to work with others and accept others for who they are is exactly what causes most of the social problems in the world.  It isn't just being unable to accept others though, it is a fanaticism and self righteous arrogance to believe that they have some natural authority to ignore the rights of others and shove their ideology down the throats of those people.

Subjective elimination of civil rights, invasion of privacy, illegal search and seizure, ridicule and the spreading of inaccurate and derogatory propaganda about the people that "should" be oppressed.

Open dialogue is important.  A willingness to listen is important.  A willingness to accept is important.

A desire to "fight" and "dominate" is not only NOT required it is the source of all problems in the world.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

Logic and facts and ignorance

So I am taking a logic class this term and as usual I am already annoyed with what people think of as "facts".

In the course reading the instructor makes a statement, "On the other hand, a fact is something that we do take to be objectively true (e.g., it’s a fact that the earth revolves around the
sun, not the other way around)."

The problem is this is a relative fact, not an absolute fact.


Lets back up a little.  Suppose we have three people standing on the same line of longitude on the surface of the Earth.  One is standing on the North Pole at the point at which all lines of longitude start.  One is standing on the Equator.  One is standing on the 45th Parallel of latitude.  All of these people are standing as perfectly still as a person can possibly stand.  Which one is moving fastest?

The one on the equator is moving at about one thousand miles per hour.  The one on the 45th parallel is moving at about 750mph.  The one on the North Pole is moving at zero.  All of these conditions are relative to a point at the center of the Earth.

If we examine the motion of these three people from the relative perspective of the surface of the Earth or relative to each other the three men are motionless.  If we examine the three people from the relative perspective of the center of the Earth as the Earth rotates the position of a person on the surface of the globe defines the speed of their relative motion and we can say that the person on the Equator is moving the fastest.

But wait, suppose we examine the three people from a perspective of the center point of the Sun.  Which one is moving fastest?  In that case we have to know the relative position of the line of longitude upon which our three people are standing to the sun.  As the Earth rotates and moves around the Sun sometimes the person on the equator is moving faster and sometimes the person on the North Pole is moving faster because the velocity relative to the center point of the Sun is relative to the rotation of the Earth.  For part of the day the Earth's rotation is moving in the same direction as the Earth moves around the sun and we can add the rotational velocity of the Earth to the orbital velocity of the Earth.  For part of the day the Earths rotation is opposite the orbital direction and we must subtract the rotational velocity from the orbital velocity.

Everybody get that?  So we know that even standing very still motion is relative based on the observers perspective.

It actually gets very kewl here.  Einstein used the example of a train in motion.  If the observer is standing on the ground outside the train, relative to the observer the train is in motion.  If the observer is inside the train, relative to the observer the ground is in motion.

WTF?  The ground in motion?

Yes, because motion is relative to a reference point and in this case we are using the observer as the reference point just as we have used the surface of the Earth, the center of the Earth and the center of the Sun as reference points.

Motion is defined based on a reference point.  If there is no reference point there is no motion.

Now let us look at the statement "it’s a fact that the earth revolves around the sun, not the other way around"

Is this true?  No.  This is only true if we accept the sun as the reference point for the motion of the Earth.  Suppose we accept the location of an observer on the surface of the Earth as the reference point.  Is the statement still true?  The answer is NO.

And here we have the crux of the problem, it is a lot like 2+2=10.

Traditionally we assume that an equation is in the base ten system unless there is a notation that the equation is in a different base system.  However, some people can look at the equation 2+2=10 and say, "oh, we are in a base 4 system" while others will say "the equation is wrong".  Both would be correct since we have a rule of assumption in mathematics which tells us that unless otherwise noted all equations are in base 10.

In real life we don't always have the advantage of these assumptive rules.  Real problems in life don't obey assumptive rules concerning relative truths.

Unless we know that motion is defined relative to the center point of the Sun we can't say that the Earth revolves around the sun.  Unless we know that the equation is defined relative to the base 10 number system we can't say what 2+2 equals.

Without defining the relativity of the problem we are ignorant and can only make assumptions about relativity and guesses based on the assumptions.

Take the recent hoopla about making guns illegal or further increasing restrictive laws on firearms or however you want to define the Sandy Hook firearms hoopla.

The assumption is that guns are different than recreational drugs or alcohol or prostitution so the violence that develops when an unregulated black market is expanded after legislation restricting a market is passed.

In other words people assume that legislating guns won't create the same violent black market that legislating recreational drugs, alcohol, prostitution or etc did.

What is the relative reference point for that assumption?


Try telling someone that they are ignorant, especially a professor at a University.

My wife used to get really angry with me when I would say "I'm ignorant.  I don't have enough information to have an opinion."  She believed that refusing to have an opinion before educating myself on a subject was a cop out.  Lots of people do.  Like my wife, many people will demand that someone formulate an uneducated opinion and then hold them to it.  Reporters are especially good at demanding opinions from bureaucrats or politicians without any regard for the persons education on a subject.

So here I am, once again, learning about logic from someone who doesn't know a fact from an opinion.  My professor doesn't understand the relativity of statements like "The Sun revolves around the Earth".  This professor is ignorant of the relative truth of statements like these.  Is that a problem?  Not usually because the vast majority of people are just going to accept the premise that the relative motion of the Earth MUST be defined from the center point of the Sun.

"Drink the koolaid".  I hate that slang.  It took me a while to track down the origin.  It is based on Jim Jones telling his followers to drink poisoned koolaid because it was good for them and so they drank it.  The big problem is, most people who use that statement are too stupid to know that they are "drinking koolaid" all the time.

My professor "drank the koolaid" regarding the relative motion of the Earth to the Sun, ie the assumption that the motion of the Earth always has to be defined relative to the center point of the Sun.  Is that a "true" assumption?  Not at all.  Like the equation 2+2 we can usually "drink the koolaid" and assume a base 10 system and we will be correct most of the time.  Should we?  Should we always assume a "universal truth"?  Isn't that "drinking the koolaid"?

I'll learn in this class.  I can learn from anyone.  I just need to control my vomit impulse.

Friday, January 04, 2013

"hackers", anonymous and fascism

Anyone who has read my blogs knows I can't stand the fascist censorship groups like Anonymous engage in when they attack people whose views they disagree with.  It is just plain wrong.

I'm not perfect though, I do stupid crap too and I really have to applaud these guys for releasing the video of the dork bragging at a party about raping a girl.  Viscerally I don't give a rats ass if these rapists get a fair trial or not.

Hackers prove accused guilty and rapists won't get a fair trail?

I've been attacked by scum bags calling themselves hackers, had my identity stolen, my website trashed, been lied about, etc, all because I present viewpoints that these scumbag "hacker" fascists want to censor.  I have very little use for fascist censors spending their miserable lives hating other people.

However, this time it isn't censorship.  This time it isn't attacking someone whose political, social or economic viewpoints they don't agree with.

This time it is just posting a video one scum bag took of another scum bag bragging about raping a girl.

These guys are guilty, the video proved it.

It is an invasion of privacy.  The evidence can't be used in a court of law.  I am not saying that I believe what this group of fascists did was right.  In fact I think that what these fascist "hackers" did was wrong.

Being human, like being Christian, is not about being perfect.  People do "wrong" things and from an intellectual perspective I know that what these fascist "hackers" did is wrong.

I really don't give a rats ass if they have to take these scum bags to Outer Mongolia and have a trial in a yurt or the darkest Amazonian jungle where the natives don't have their own written language much less access to the Internet.

I'm still glad anonymous released the video and this time I have to applaud their fascist invasion of privacy.

One of the basic premises of a free society is that everyone has the right to privacy and no one has the right to break into someone's "home" and then search and seize whatever they want.  The fourth amendment of the U.S. Constitution provides for an open and lawful process for the issuance of warrants for search and seizure.  Jack booted thugs kicking in doors, searching and seizing is not only illegal it is a fundamental violation of human rights that I find repugnant.

Even so, as much as I hate fascism, I'm glad these jack booted "hacker" thugs committed this particular violation of fundamental civil and human rights.