What I think of Luxleaks
What I think of Luxleaks
Ah yes, we've just completed the boring off-year political cycle, which means it's time for the billion dollar roller coaster ride that is the quadrennial US presidential contest.
Except that, thanks to the right-wing retards, all the excitement has been well and truly drained out of what used to be one of my favourite pastimes. Their race to the bottom, still unchecked, means that Hillary Rodham Clinton is your next Oval Office Occupant. How the fuck am I supposed to enjoy the ups and downs of what used to be way more of an "Any Given Sunday" situation when the results are so predictable?
"Bu...but...but", I hear you say.
Oh fine, I'll humour your delusional asses.
HILLARY CAN BE PRIMARIED FROM THE LEFT. "It happened before! Liberals aren't fond of hawks!" And who the fuck is gonna primary her? Biden? Warren? Cuomo? Don't make me laugh.
A LOT CAN HAPPEN IN 2 YEARS! Sure it can. But apart form the fact that that argument cuts all kinds of ways and is thus useless, the "something" that's going to need to happen for HRC not to be elected Prez is going to have to be Extinction-Level Event sized. You go ahead and count your black swans before they hatch, see what that gets you.
PEOPLE JUST DON'T LIKE HER. Well yeah, if you're Railgunner. Meanwhile, to ordinary people, she's just a high-visibility politician.
YEAH BUT $REPUBLICAN CONTENDER CAN TAKE HER! Really? Let's see who's currently in the lineup:
Rick Perry: Either he's burnishing his stock to improve his post-political career earnings, or one of his advisers thinks they've ironed out all those glitches that made him a laughingstock even to members of his own party. The only way he makes it past Super Tuesday is because he has a nice smile.
Scott Walker: The stunning thing about the Wisconsin Governor is that he's somehow managed to convince donors that winning over white people in a medium-size state as well as surviving a recall election makes him both unstoppable on the way to the White House, and secretly the most amazing potential president EVAR. I really hope he does run, watching the 'electability' bloom come off that rose will be fun to read about.
Jeb Bush: HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. The base won't even touch him with a ten foot pole, and the general electorate, faced with two different versions of recycled crap, will always vote for the one they remember more fondly.
Chris Christie: Oooooh, a Republican even Democrats could vote for! Yeah, maybe 10 or 20 years ago. Anyway, forgetting the millions of problems that would hound a Christie run, I suspect his biggest will be he doesn't' have the stomach or the endurance to really go the distance. In fact, I think he's also smart enough to know not to run, which is sad, because he'd be the only one with any moderate cred, and non-crazy Republicans are already feeling pretty unloved these days.
Rand Paul: Never thought I'd see the day when a presidential candidate came along that would make Ron Paul look sane. I guess crazy is contagious.
Ted Cruz: Let's pretend for a minute that Ted isn't the poster child for everything that's wrong about the GOP these days, the US electorate will never overwhelmingly vote for a Canadian with a whiny voice.
Paul Ryan: Remember Sarah Palin? You don't? There you go.
Marco Rubio: Theoretically, he's almost perfect. And in a non-insane world, he would be the man to beat this cycle. And even then, a disciplined Clinton machine could still keep him 5 points away.
Someone wake me for 2024. maybe things will get interesting again.
As seen on TV just tonight, proof that zombies have now gone mainstream in our culture: Restless Arm, Creepy Holden, and Lifeless Lisa.
It's a pretty standard trope, but one that libertarians do not seem to believe can possibly exist. And it is a blind spot in economic justice in the United States of America.
The Lion and his Fellow Hunters, By Aesop
Once, a lion, a fox, a jackal, and a wolf went hunting. They caught a stag and killed it, and quartered the meat. "This quarter," said the lion, "is for me, as I am the King of Beasts. And this quarter is mine as the arbiter of the spoils. The third quarter is mine because of my part in chasing down the stag. And as for the fourth â" well, I'd like to see any of you dare to put so much as a paw on it." The other three animals were bitterly disappointed, but they slunk away, unwilling or unable to fight for their share of the meat.
Just because you help a lion doesn't mean he'll share.
So remember boys and girls, just because you help a rich man to run his business, does not mean he'll share the profits with you. Which leads us right back to an entirely Different Leo and his successors.
So I'm waiting in the Wendy's drive-thru after work tonight, and there's an ad on the radio I guess from the BSA. It said software piracy is not only wrong, it's illegal.
Doesn't "not only x, but also y" mean "as if x wasn't bad enough, there's also y"? When you use that rhetorical structure, aren't you going in increasing badness about something? Saving the worst for last, for the most dramatic effect and hopefully to seal the persuasion deal?
So now something being against the law carries more convincing force than something being wrong. I guess the needles of the moral compasses of most these days spin wildly instead of track steady. And without the force of government we'd be ethically lost.
Reminds of seeing on Cops a few weeks ago, teen gets arrested for taking a gun to an argument, luckily the cops stop things before anyone gets hurt, and dad is at the station talking to the young lad, very disappointed, and says son, don't you know you could get tried as an adult for killing someone? WTF? Because that's worse than ending another human being's life?!? That's why you shouldn't murder people?!?
p.s. Also heard on the radio tonight some announcer pronounce the TLD of that web site as oh arr gee. Made me think, I want a
Rights are distributive (with our Freedom of Association).
A x C + B x C = (A + B) x C
A = me
B = you
C = the right of Free Speech, in this example
Us speaking together is the same as you and I speaking separately, as far as the government should be concerned. To remove the C factor from the rhs, is to also remove it from the left.
An AC posted to my last JE, a kind of user I don't normally read posts from, but I was convinced he is someone who is on my Friends list. Because my response got long, and by posting AC he might not see it and notice the opportunity to say how I'm wrong about something, I've just made a new JE out of it.
If an entity doesn't get to vote in the ballot, that entity has no business influencing votes.
But the entities we're talking about here are not some kind of disembodied mysteries. They're us. It's a violation of my rights to have to shut up because I formed a business with someone or joined a union or a church or whatever. I as a legal citizen of the U.S. have the God-given right to free speech, of which political speech is especially "sacred" (in a democracy), no matter my associations.
Okay, that is, except in the capacity of an agent of the government. Our rights (are designed to) protect us from government, so if you take a job with the government, that's voluntary, and you don't have free speech on the job. So cops can't proselytize while they're writing you a ticket, and teachers, well, shouldn't be allowed to brainwash kids with their Leftist garbage. But if I want to run a grocery store where the check-out people try to convert you, or tell you who to vote for, that's my right. (And then you can decide whether to shop there or not.)
I'm okay with politicians being beholden to corporations. Or unions. Or environmental groups. Or the NRA. Or the Mormon Church (I'm not Mormon). As long as that makes them also aligned with their constituents. And if it's not, then bad on the voters. How can we expect accountability for politicians when we won't hold ourselves accountable?
A politician comes into office with (hopefully) some dead-set beliefs, and some that they haven't gotten all the information on yet and are potentially swayable (or are issues they just don't care about either way). The most concerned about an issue raise it with their representative, and attempt to persuade him/her. Those that aren't really concerned about an issue, don't. So the politician decides based on which side of the issue seems the most important to his/her constituents.
Lobbying is pure, wholesome Americana. You can pay someone to do it, or do it yourself(s). On an FNC special one weekend during one of the more recent times the EPA or whatever was trying to make life hard for a rancher, members of the family flew to D.C. to speak to someone to state their case. I personally think it's ridiculous that they couldn't get time while their rep was in town, and that legislators should be part-timers somehow, but I haven't thought that completely through and it's a separate issue.
But special interests, despite thinking certain ones are okay and others are not, is what we all are, and is not a reason to shut people up in violation of their rights. I for example am a walking set of special interests like, as a male I would like to see equality in reproductive rights among others, as a programmer I want the importation of competing slave labor stopped, etc. If I form a software business with some people, I would want those who would apply progressively more and more costly regulations on that venture with my life's savings at risk to not be elected. Denying me free speech, in whichever of my private capacities I'm engaging in, is immoral.
Without knowing the person, if someone says free speech is okay only except for corporations, to me that's not so much a position on speech as it is on corporations. If someone thinks corporations are evil and therefore should be excluded from x (among others), well, to me that's not a reason. I don't like the vast millions that the unions donate or that George Soros' various front groups donate, but I believe they have the right.
p.s. On a much less serious note, in case anyone reading this missed it, a couple of funnies (well of course I think the first one was funny): http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=6180957&cid=48459463
Hey liberals -- why do you care? According to you: they didn't build that, someone else made that happen.
And then I went further.
Now I'm going to tell you the rest:
The protests are nothing more than an attempt at a Reichstag fire, an effort to give Chairman Zero reason to declare martial law - for "social justice" (which of course, is not justice).
Any question of whether Chairman Zero was on the side of justice or mob rule was answered last night during his press conference. His body language and visible anger spoke volumes. He is on the side of the unruly howling mob (but, if you've been paying attention, you knew that already.)
Justice for Michael Brown?
He strongarm robbed a convenience store then assaulted a police officer. It's really a shame he wasn't able to survive his wounds, justice for him would have been 10 years in prison.
I saw on another tech news site the following:
"Despite the obvious corrupting effects of money in political campaigns,
Huh? That's saying "despite the obvious corrupting effect of political speech on political speech,
How is that obviously corrupting? Is grass roots organizing corrupting campaigns too? Do debates corrupt them as well?
I thought a political campaign was a candidate getting his/her message out. Getting your message to as many ears as possible requires, like most things in life, time and money.
With money you can buy mailers and slots on the airwaves. With time you can canvas. Contributions of money let you buy more distributions of your message, and contributions of time let other people call and canvas for you. In campaigns, donated time and money are multipliers.
Maybe the poster meant opposition money. That's doubtful because that's mainly a tactic of the Left (to funnel money in from all over the country, to squash a local candidate or proposition), and most people who speak up, well, anywhere, are Lefties.
But even so, unless debates are corruption, then opposing messages are just as valid in the arena of ideas.
Even attack/smear messages are valid. I don't like deceptive tactics, but if there's stuff that's true about a candidate that also reflects poorly on him/her, then it's fair game. I want to know if a candidate recently flip-flopped on an issue, or has a history of it, such that they might not really be passionate about a certain position.
I want to know if they groped women or diddled interns. What the Left does in timing revelations about such things, for maximum impact, is distasteful. The truth should be disclosed when it's known. But Leftists are distasteful. (Because gaining power to them is infinitely more important than acting tastefully. Shame, embarassment, bald-faced lying, none of these are anywhere near enough of a deterrent, as is constantly seen. Power at any and all costs is so important because the issues are so important to them.)
I don't need to know so much who's supporting a candidate, because that only matters if I already know that they don't have solid beliefs themselves and are primarily just doing what their supporters want. Because if they don't have principles they stick to, they're already disqualified in my mind, so who's pulling their strings is immaterial at that point.
A principled candidate is naturally going to attract support from like-minded causes. This is so obvious it shouldn't need to be said, except the Left has probably convinced most people that no politician would be for something if there wasn't the demonized "special interest"* backing for it.
If I was in political office and the NRA for example supported me, that wouldn't make me bought and paid for, I already believe in gun rights, and would vote that way anyways. Same for abortion and a whole host of other issues.
I suppose there are things I don't really care about, or that I think don't make a difference either way, like the minimum wage, that I could potentially be bought off on. But then that's up to the voters, to decide if they want to elect someone who really cares about a, b, and c, and not so much x, y, and z.
But if one side or campaign raises more money, or more volunteers, or writes a smarter big data program suite, this is not corruption. It's by definition the process.
So what it's really saying is that one doesn't like and would like to radically transform or throw out and replace the process. Not liking certain kinds of political speech means you don't like a political process which speech has a significant say over. You'd prefer a much less, or completely un-, democratic process. Which does afterall jibe with the Left's view that people are too stupid to make the right decisions, in general.
So that's what's meant by things like the quote above; the translation of that (dishonest) Leftie speak is "there really shouldn't be any speech involved in the political process". (Dictators are best. (Which is true, just not by humans/in this life.))
And that's why, despite popular belief, it's not safe to vote Democrat. It's often times not a safe vote to vote for the Republican, as they often are detrimental to the country. But it's basically never safe to vote for a Democrat, because they're almost all Lefties, and Leftism is an opposition to the main things that distinguish Americanism. Like democracy and free speech.
*Calling special interests bad is calling freedom of association bad. If I have a right of political speech, and a right to group together with like-minded people, but then I lose the right to speak as a member of that group, then I don't really have those two rights.
p.s. on part 1: So on FU Garage earlier in the week they located and haggled over and bought a 1970 Torino 429 Cobra Jet, of which they said not a whole lot were made. (And with an engine that size, would be highly desirable.) They had no project car to work on at the time, so the wrench monkeys were idle. And the possibly head partner guy flipped it for only $2500 profit. WhyTF not fix it all up and sell it for a $25K profit?!?
It's a good time for TV these days because there's so much zombie stuff. I've been a zombie nut since being a kid, although I didn't get around to seeing the original ("They're coming for you Bar'bra!") until later in life. Before having to work summers I'd rent marathon sessions of Day of the Dead, Dawn of the Dead (prior to the Ving Rhames remake), Return of the Living Dead Parts I, II, III. All great fun. (Still remember a great scene in one of those: One house occupant notices the other has obviously become very sick (a zombie), so calls for an ambulance. Paramedics arrive, and are overtaken in their van by zombies. Then more paramedics are called, as one of the zombies gets on its radio and says "Send more braaaaaaiiiinnnns!")
Then later Shaun of the Dead (first half comedy, second half serious), Flight of the Living Dead (subtitled "Zombies on a Plane", after Laurence Fishburne's "Snakes on a Plane" was a fad at the time), the 30 Days of Night stuff (SyFy did a few sequels I think), 28 [unit of time]'s Later, and of course Martin Lawrence's I Am Legend. And countless SyFy channel variations in their Saturday night originals. I didn't care that much for Romero's final zombie film, as the zombies were somehow smart in that one, and could swim. (I like 'em dumb and feeble! Like all good dead people should be!)
So I was really surprised when AMC of all networks came out with The Walking Dead. Gosh I wanted to like that, but I gave up on it several times/for chunks of several seasons because half the episodes were written for women or something. There was more crying and emoting going in some of those than in Seventh Heaven probably. Thankfully the existence of Z Nation, which is a lot more up my alley -- zombie kills and jokes -- may be causing TWD to keep its edge going, hopefully.
I also gave Helix a chance (they're doing a season 1 marathon on Black Friday). The variation where they're not dead, but infected with something that makes them zombie-ish. But an interesting setting, in a remote research facility in the arctic. I think they blew that up at the end of the first season, so when it starts up again I think in January they'll have to be somewhere else. But good conspiracy angles mixed in. Just didn't like the couple (only, thank goodness) of episodes with an over-acting Seven of Nine.
And I guess not zombies but vampires, but still, FX's (and Guillermo del Toro's) The Strain is bloody good just to even have on the tube. I don't watch sitcoms, cop dramas, or hospital dramas, which have in my lifetime seemed to be the big three in television programming (until so-called reality shows came along (and infomercials; yes Virginia, they really did used to show movies late at night on TV)), so having all this apocolyptic creature serieses is quite nice.
Moar creatures! (I do watch a bit off Face Off, and other misc. stuff sometimes I guess like House Hunters and Top Chef, but my preference is for a creative story over contests or (scripted) "reality".)
No I've never watch Survivor! (And the band sucks too.)
I've passed on Bear, and I think some British guy who was also doing solo survival demonstrations. Dude You're Screwed is going solo, but there's the other guys at basecamp interjecting things and keeping it interesting. Otherwise I guess I need at least pairs, so Dual Survival and Naked & Afraid with their sometimes complimentary and sometimes clashing aspects of the personalities involved are what keeps my interest.
Esp. Naked & Afraid can be somewhat boring though, if the particular two can't find any real food and basically just spend the 21 days starving and suffering and trying to keep themselves together mentally. I like success stories, although in Dual Survival it seemed like they were helped along sometimes, circumstance-wise (like happening upon a group of fisherman or something, so the episode could eventually end).
Not learning as much as I thought I would, though. I've learned that even if you're a hotshot at making fire, you're going to fail in an actual survival situation. I've learned that snakes are, at least on land, your best bet for decent protein. Everything else is too fast/elusive, but venomous snakes will stand their ground, stupidly. (And I've learned that venonous snakes have vertical slit eyes like cats, and non- have round eyes. So that's something, I guess.)
And I've learned not to do what they do. Everyone seems to think making shelter is the number one priority. And then they proceed to walk around in an area where the ground is covered in thorns, destroying their feet and critically affecting their mobility, instead of making shoes first. Or building their shelter in a downpour, letting all that fresh water slip by them, to then spend the next several days parched and looking for fresh water!
Speaking of which, the number thing I've learned not to do, is drink unboiled water. Esp. on N & A (T & A?) those people again and again make a dumb decision to risk drinking water running off a rock or sitting in a puddle, and then they're shitting their brains out for the next few days (or carted off to the hospital with some jungle bug), getting even more dehydrated then they'd have been without it.
Dude You're Screwed is the funner show as, besides the ambush the next victim for the next episode schtick, there's the aspects of the weird stuff that they give them, that they then use in suprising ways, and also the stuff that they steal on the way out of the plane or that they have hidden on their persons that gets by the guys as they search them before dumping them.
If you're going on Naked and Afraid, you each get one item, bring a big multi-purpose knife, no matter what, for chopping wood for fires, and skinning anything you might be lucky enough to catch. Then, if it's a wet clime, bring a firestarter (and then don't break it; they're not impervious), else bring a metal pot. Boil your water in the pot, or bamboo tubes you might be able to find.
Some worthless people have opted for, as one of their team's only two items, a pair of swimming googles, a magnifying glass, and duct tape.
I wonder why no one has brought any kind of real weaponry. Unless you're lucky enough trap something in its burrow, you would need some kind of projectile weapon to catch most meat. In re-cuts of the show they show some things that didn't make it on to the main episode, and they do cobble together grubs and miscellaneous things to eat, but not much calories, and nowhere near what they need to keep chopping up firewood, and to make their journey on the last day to be picked up. It's like no one ever thinks about how they're going to get enough protein, so at the end of the 21 days the women lose around 20 pounds and the guys can lose up to 40. And who knows what that kind of malnutrition (and the dehydration) is doing to them in the long term.
p.s. I also watched a few of those... um, maybe specials rather than a series, on how rich people purchase the services of survival bunker builders. Like taking a cargo container and outfitting it for n people to survive the apocalypse for m days. (Last night's SyFy movie reminds me. And leads into part 3.)
[Edit: Just thought of the third unusual, worthless item that's been chosen to be brought along, that I couldn't think of a few minutes ago.]
Apparently the stuff I've been watching on TV in recent times have mostly fallen into three categories.
I'm not so much into the fix-em-up part of those kinds of shows. Maybe partly because I'm oblivious to what they're doing or why. So I used to watch some of the block of car shows (I forget what they nicknamed it) that I think was mid-day Saturday on Spike (or maybe its prior incarnation, TNN), for a while there hosted by Danica Patrick, just as she was starting to get famous.
So I like the primetime shows a lot better because there's less grease-monkeying and in-show ads for stuff and more monkeying around and getting to the final outcome quicker. And the searching for new and interesting project cars. So I watch a little Count. I used to watch Ass Monkey a lot, but they really pissed me off when they fired a couple of the mechanics that I liked, and suddenly featured new faces that we were just supposed to accept I guess. Happily, those two partnered with some others and started up a competing business, that's now on the same network (as Misfits Garage).
I don't know WTF is PBS's problem. I used to watch Motorweek every week at college in Northern California. Down in SoCal, the station in one area used to run it at 2am or some shit, and where I'm at now doesn't run it all. Since they've stopped running that, and old Mr. Bean and Whose Line reruns, they're completely worthless to me.
Top Gear went from bad to worse. The British version was at least a fairly interesting show, you just had to accept that America and Americans were going to be the butt of literally every single joke, and that like Slashdotters, they never tire of the same old ones. (It's the element of mean-spiritedness and the feeling that gives to the tellers that keeps them from getting bored of it.) I've tried to watch the American version, I've wanted to like it, but it's just sooo boring! I don't know how I could find a car show boring. It seems there's not much about cars, just three guys screwing around. And they're not my kind of guys I guess.
I think Motor Trend or Car & Driver had a show on for a couple of years that I used to watch, but not anything that lasted.
My cable company used to advertise some new car shopping network, but that was one of the digital channels, and I'm still on analog cable TV. (And I felt a little funny about the idea anyways, as to me a separate organization talking about new cars is a show, but the manufacturers doing it is an ad.)
Anyone still lurking around this place? I see several people are still active here.... quite a huge pile of names I have not seen in a long long time.
Thanks to smitty for spurring a little Wikipedia journey, with:
Yeah, I don't mind the label "classical liberal", in the Hayekian sense.
So it seems that one way of looking at the Liberalism scale, politically L to R (at least in the U.S.), is:
Social Justice - Large amount of governmental intervention in peoples's lives.
Social Liberalism - Medium amount of governmental intervention in people's lives.
Classical Liberalism - Small amount of governmental intervention in people's lives.
And with Conservatism:
There is no single set of policies that are universally regarded as conservative, because the meaning of conservatism depends on what is considered traditional in a given place and time.
In the U.S. at least, a free market and a free society are for now still recognized as our traditional form.
Some conservatives seek to preserve things as they are, emphasizing stability and continuity, while others, called reactionaries, oppose modernism and seek a return to "the way things were".
So I'm a Liberal Conservative. Reactionary (and growing moreso, the more we move "forward") in my Conservatism (roll the country back to much of its traditional ways) and Classical in my Liberalism.
p.s. But when I look up Liberal conservatism, it says not to be confused with Libertarian conservatism. Yet I'm not seeing the difference between the two. I especially don't get this bit:
It contrasts with classical liberalism and especially aristocratic conservatism, rejecting the principle of equality as something in discordance with human nature, instead emphasizing the idea of natural inequality.
I believe in both, so maybe it's really splitting hairs by this point. This is me too:
Libertarian conservatism is a conservative political philosophy and ideology that combines right-libertarian politics and conservative values.
That is, I have very Conservative values, yet don't think they should be imposed by law. And I come at my libertarian bent from the Right, vice those who come at it from the Left, like my sister and John Stossel, which to me doesn't not make for a very predictable libertarian.
Finally, I like this:
Nelson Hultberg wrote that there is "philosophical common ground" between libertarians and conservatives. "The true conservative movement was, from the start, a blend of political libertarianism, cultural conservatism, and non-interventionism abroad bequeathed to us via the Founding Fathers." He said that such libertarian conservatism was "hijacked" by neoconservatism, "by the very enemies it was formed to fight â" Fabians, New Dealers, welfarists, progressives, globalists, interventionists, militarists, nation builders, and all the rest of the collectivist ilk that was assiduously working to destroy the Founders' Republic of States."
Had two identical messages on my machine, arriving at about 10am and then around noon.
In an unrecognized accent, the recorded voice said:
Hi, uh, this is <unintelligible> Jefferson.
I'm calling you from Internal Revenue Service, Tax Audit Department.
Please listen to this important message really carefully.
The nature of my call is to inform you that we have received a legal petition notice against your name
under your Social Security number regarding tax fraud.
The lawsuit is going to be filed in federal claim courthouse today.
So, [to] receive more information about this lawsuit you can reach us at 509-590-0195.
I repeat, 509-590-0195.
And now please note that, a <unintelligible> arrest warrant has been issued on your name
as five criminal allegations are been pressed on you.
So please take care about it. Goodbye.
Not even a "This message is for Mr. Bill Dog..." opener, like all my official business messages begin. I guess Mr. Jefferson doesn't even know my name.
Googling that phone number, apparently Mr. Jefferson is also known as Brian Smith, to others from earlier this month. Maybe that's why he had to pause a moment before stating his name.