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User Journal

Journal Journal: Respect for the individual 12

"Respect for the individual." First heard about this one about 40 years ago. One of the three guiding principles of a great company. Still around, but they dumped that idea a while back, though I'm still working on it.

Back when the company had that principle, there was a strong consensus that it was the best company in the world, at least some of the time. By the time I started working there, they were already on the down side, and one of the biggest problems was that they had forgotten what the principles were about. The other two principles were easier to understand and follow but "respect for the individual" was already on the ropes, though it somehow became something of a fetish object for me.

Seems like a simple idea, but it isn't. To really understand the meaning, you have to apply it to everyone. It's really easy to respect some folks. Many of my coworkers and customers were elite engineers and programmers with PhDs from hoity toity universities. One of them even rose above normal rankings and did me the peculiar honor of asking for a bit of minor help on a TED talk. Went well, too. Easy to respect such individuals, but you can't draw the line there, or you're disrespecting other folks and it has to be universal.

I've often suspected that my difficulty with the concept was related to my time in the service, where the rules of respect were completely codified and ritualized. Up? Respect. Down? Phuck 'em. Convenient, but mindless, and ultimately fake. Real respect for the individual has to go every which way.

Maybe my problem with the concept had more to do with self-respect? It has to go inwards, too, or maybe it's better to say that respect for other individuals has to be based on a foundation of self-respect, too. If you have perfectionist or idealistic tendencies, then it's kind of hard to practice that respect in reverse for exactly the same reason that the high-level respect doesn't easily go to lower levels.

For a while I tried specialization. I thought the trick of "respect for the individual" might involve finding the unique strength, even if it was a negative one, and then you can respect that. Can you respect someone for being the biggest liar in the room? How about respecting the greatest rudeness or stupidity, even if you have to limit the scope of the "greatness" to a slashdot journal? Actually takes me back to the military days again... Perverted version of the 23rd psalm "because I'm the baddest motherphucker in the valley [of the shadow of death]."

So how can you respect a subhuman and mindless troll? I failed again.

Oh well. Guess I need to keep studying it.

By the way I'm leaving this one open for comments just in case some trolls are stupid enough to want to prove my point. Unlikely that any of them will say anything interesting enough to merit a reply, but it might be amusing to watch them try. Of course the sad part is that they really don't have any better use of their precious time on earth.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Is Michael Moore right about Trump's victory? 21

This is my own dismayed reaction to Michael Moore's lists (one in email and a somewhat different list on Alternet) of reasons why Trump will win:

The email version was stronger, though he used some different points there. Not sure it should be in a top five list, but Mike didn't mention the plausibility threshold: The Donald has finally convinced everyone that it is actually possible for such a person to become president. Not sure when I was dragged across that Rubicon, but even I have to admit that the official nominee of the so-called Republican Party could become president. No matter what.

My worst-feeling agreement is on the enthusiasm factor, though my analysis is based on a breakdown of Trump's supporters into government haters, Hillary haters, bigots, racists, and authoritarians (fascists). Doesn't matter how wrong they are, they are all enthusiastic about their wrongness. There might be some people who have corresponding positive enthusiasm for Hillary, but I haven't met one.

Even if you do feel total enthusiasm for one (or more) of Hillary's policies, can you really be sure she'll do it? Sorry, but you know she's a realist and it all depends on the political realities. Also, even if Trump is saying that he's totally opposed to that policy, he's also said he's in favor of it, and no one knows which side he'll be on tomorrow. Do you hear that giant sucking sound? It's your enthusiasm.

Ultimately it comes down to bad economic models, but there are so many to choose from and all of them stink. For example, the mass media model of eyeballs for ads has driven the free publicity that Trump rides like a lawn tractor, mowing down everyone who has gotten in his way. Alternet is nicer, but it's running on fumes. (I've suggested better alternative economics, but I'm not a salesman and I can't push good ideas the way the Donald can push bad ones.) [Also suggested better economic models for slashdot, but they aren't interested here, either. Perhaps my ideas are so good (or bad) that they just have to be rammed down people's throats? But I'm not such a ram.]

At this point I think that America's best hope is that Trump is a big liar, and since he is, maybe we can have hope after all? No, because the secret truth would have to be that he is really a secret super-patriot and he realized that the so-called Republican Party is just a brand hijack. The secret super patriot would have decided to restore democracy in America by helping the so-called GOP finish its suicide so a rational and principled second party could emerge. I'm not saying that something along those lines won't happen after the Trump fiasco, but it ain't his secret plan. Now I'm just desperately hoping he's conned me, too.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Suggested poll for politics: How to stop Trump? 140

No, the Subject: line isn't actually my suggested poll, though someone else might want to work on that one. Actually I'm approaching a different poll from the back, but that may be because it's increasingly obvious that America's real choice this November is "backwards with Trump" or "forward with Hillary". Perhaps just a failure of my imagination, but I am unable to imagine how the country can go forward with its head screwed on backwards as it fantasizes about a glorious past that was never so glorious. (The Donald's supporters must insist that old people with accurate memories and non-conservative historians (and I'm both) are just tools of the vast liberal conspiracy.)

At this stage of the game (of sick politics), the question of stopping Trump has become equal to asking how Hillary can win. It should be a case of "How can she possibly lose?", but after 30 years of sustained, mostly non-credible, and often incredible and even insane demonization, I'm beginning the believe that it really could happen. How much of Christie's lynch mob speech were you able to stomach?

No, that isn't my suggested poll either, though I think the answers to such a poll should be measured in seconds for decent people. Lynch mobs are bad.

Here's my suggested poll:

What campaign slogan should Hillary use?

(1) Forward Hillary
(2) Stronger Together
(3) Iâ(TM)m with Her
(4) Make America Whole
(5) Love and Kindness
(6) Break Down Barriers
(7) Build Ladders of Opportunity
(8) Love Trumps Hate
(9) Donald Trump
(10) Save Us, Cowboy Neal!

As usual with my poll suggestions, I've loaded the dice by putting my favorite answer first, but most of these have actually been tested by Hillary's campaign and I haven't noticed any of them catching fire the way "Crooked Hillary" has...

In my research for this poll, I visited her official website looking for her campaign slogans, and that was massively depressing. No clear slogans to be found, though some links for some issues, for sending money, and most annoying of all, for harvesting my email address. However, that wasn't the really depressing part. That was when I decided to try to contact the campaign and was shown a webform that actively REJECTS my email addresses. WTF? Tried three, all valid, and each returned "This does not appear to be a valid email address." Has her website been hacked? WTF?

More importantly as regards this suggested poll, no mention of "forward" (or "backward") on any of the webpages I visited. Maybe the website just isn't for people like me? With a bit of imaginative effort, I can imagine that I'm not included in any of her target demographics, but it's easier to believe the website needs work...

Seems like I need to close with the usual disclaimer. Quite possible that it's contamination due to the decades of vilification, but I don't feel any real enthusiasm about voting for Hillary. Rather than the tainting, I just think it's part of my increasingly negative view of American politics. If the dictators of Texas hadn't removed my vote (different long story), I certainly would have voted for her, but mostly it would have been another negative vote against another terrible candidate from the so-called Republican Party. Honest Abe's ghost is haunted and horrified by Con Man Donald. (I think my more substantive (and less negative) reasons actually involve Hillary's personal identities, but that's another long topic.)

User Journal

Journal Journal: Ekronomics 101

The essential notion of ekronomics is that time is much more important than money and needs to be analyzed carefully. Focusing on working time, there are three basic kinds: (1) essential time to produce (and sustain) the goods and services we need to survive, (2) investment time that improves the productivity (equals reducing the required amount of essential time), and (3) recreational time, which actually includes both the production and consumption of recreational goods and services such as music, novels, and movies. That's not to say the division is always easy, but I think that's where we need to start. An obvious example of a complexity is education. A certain amount of education is essential to sustain any society, but the rest of it has to divided between investment and recreation time, and that's going to take some thought.

One application involves comparing national development. In a developed country (where almost all of the members of slashdot live) the productivity is high and the amount of time is low. Based on productivity figures that I've read and the demographic categories of the working population, I estimate that the value is on the order of 2 hours per week, averaged over the entire population. Remember that some people spend all of their working time in the essential work while other people are not doing any of it, but just buying what they need based on other work they are doing. In contrast, in a less developed society, almost everyone may be working 40 hours per work just to grow the food, while in the least developed societies (such as hunter-gatherer tribes or failed states) people may spend all of their time just struggling to survive. Looking at the future trend of national development from an ekronomic perspective, it is the balance between the other two categories that is crucial. If two countries start at the same level, but one country guides more time into investment while the other allows more time to be spent on recreation, then the first country is pretty sure to wind up more productive. Perhaps Singapore is an interesting example of this approach?

Another application involves determining proper and appropriate salary levels. From an ekronomic perspective, it is reasonable to try to evaluate jobs in terms of the amount of time people want to spend on them. I haven't yet been able to find much hard data in this area, but the research approach is obvious. You would ask a large number of people who have worked in different areas how they feel about the two kinds of jobs. A simple example question would be "How many hours of typing would you prefer instead of 1 hour of collecting garbage?" Of course the results will vary widely from person to person, but the averages will give a reasonable indicator of the desirability of different types of work and what the proper salary differentials ought to be, though you have to adjust for other factors, such as the educational time (investment time) required to qualify for the work and the prioritization of essential work. However, if you come to the conclusion that garbage collectors deserve relatively high pay and you happen to be a person who actually enjoys collecting garbage, then more power (and pay) to you and other people are unlikely to complain that they can use more of their time in other ways.

Recreational time is interesting in several ways. As a quasi-joke, I wrote a piece called "Couch potatoes of the world, unite." The URL is http://eco-epistemology.blogspot.jp/2013/04/couch-potatoes-of-world-unite.html and that was back in 2013, so I've been thinking about these ideas for a while... The interesting thing about consuming recreational time is that it is a bottomless pit and it usually does not actually consume the goods or services that were produced for recreation. There are exceptions like live theater and fancy foods, but books and movies can be reread and rewatched ad infinitum without destroying their recreational value.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Good reading and writing 1

Kind of a meta-comment from a typical slashdot "discussion". It was originally drafted there, so you have to excuse any glitches in the editing for the journal environment. (Basically I'm using the slashdot journal as a scribbling pad for ideas that will be lost in the contexts of their transient topical discussions.)

How do you assess good reading skills? Actually I think you have to start by considering good writing and why I don't do more of it. A good writer understands the reader's mind, but I rarely care. Unless someone is actually paying me for the extra effort, I'm basically quite content with gentle readers who believe whatever they want to believe. In contrast, a great writer understands the collective minds of many readers and smoothly and effectively transmits even quite complicated ideas into their minds.

However, on the reader side, I think the good reader assumes the author's mindset, and I have always found that to be the most efficient way to learn new things. There's even a simple metric of how well I'm doing it as my reading speed increases. For most books, I'm really blazing by the time I get to the last 100 pages or so. However, once again I fall short of greatness. Some of the metrics of greatness are how quickly the great reader can get into the author's head and the range of authors the great reader can handle. For example, mystery novels from a hundred years ago are quite different, and translations can be quite challenging, whether the translation is close or free.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Yellowest of so-called journalism

[Comment on article about accusations of Facebook supporting terrorism. Journal entry due to the transience factor...]

More complete Subject: Eyeballs, censorship, media pollution, and stuffing your eyeballs and earholes with garbage (and you can see why I feel threatened by the so-called long-comment penalty, but I'll try to keep it brief).

Facebook needs eyeballs to sell and appeals to freedom of speech to reduce their operating costs for censorship, even when it is richly deserved. However, this is just one aspect of broader media pollution driven by the quest for more eyeballs, best typified by the collapse of CNN's pretenses to be a media organization dedicated to the public interest. While CNN is just following their business model into the toilet, the terrorists do love the free publicity of such disaster porn. To my way of thinking that kind of ratings-driven free publicity is clearly related to the rise of the Donald, too.

However, the REAL damage is from people who use the Internet to gorge themselves on poisonous lies. Whatever insane thing you prefer to believe, you can get as much "evidence" as you want on today's Web. Again, the eyeball-driven model actually encourages pandering to such narrow-minded people, and in the google's case, they could risk losing their favored-search-engine status if they showed people too much stuff that offended them, no matter how true it was. (Remember, "All your attention are belong to us, the [google|facebook|TLC].")

Solution? As regards the mass media, stop doing what the terrorists want. Agree NOT to compete for eyeballs by supporting terrorists. Actually, that should apply broadly to ANY news involving events that were motivated by the quest for free publicity. Not censorship, but a kind of negotiated settlement. Report the news, but don't exaggerate or emphasize publicity-seeking stories to get more eyeballs. STOP feeding the monsters.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Comment on the "My Activity" of the EVIL google article

Looked it over, but I can't figure out what it means. Both the google's version of "My Activity" and the slashdot side consisting of an article and visible comments. Now I expect such obfuscation from the google since their motto became "All your attention are belong to us", but I confabulate that slashdot used to be more revealing.

Short summary: The level of information that the "My Activity" page reveals is without form or meaning. Too much data and no way to understand how it is used, though I'm still sure it is mostly used to manipulate and twist us to the google's will. What we really need to know is HOW the google analyzes the data and WHEN it is being used and in WHICH ways. Probably an impossible problem since all of us are too stupid to understand the google. The google will tell me so, even though the search "how to outsmart google" came up with a couple of interesting books (that are not available locally, at least not in English).

Long answer: Naw, I can't be bothered to write more, and would be "penalized" for the long comment if I did. Today's slashdot doesn't motivate the effort to write so thoughtfully. It doesn't even have a fraction of the funny comments it used to. However, I might be confabulating myself again.

(Now if slashdot supported such a financial model, I might be motivated to help support a project to detect abusive long comments, such as long cut-and-paste blurbs from the Web. Whoa, dead horse, whoa.)

User Journal

Journal Journal: Slashdot is to blame for Brexit! Hear me out! 2

The following comment was added to the transient discussion after the announcement of the Brexit vote. Another problem with slashdot not mentioned in my comment is that the discussions quickly go away. There should be a mechanism to revive and link back to earlier comments that become relevant again, but they just vanish into a black hole of a search engine... So here's the comment (and good luck even in finding it to see if there were any replies or reactions to it):

There are a number of obvious contributing factors to Brexit. Nationalism and selfishness are two of the most obvious.

So let's consider the enlightened discussion here on slashdot, this bastion of intellectual turmoil and whatever.

There have been several hundred comments so far. No mention of "nationalism" yet appears. One marginally related but tangential mention of "selfish" and no mentions of "selfishness". Maybe there are some hidden references, but then their invisibility reflects the failure of the moderation system. However, I think Brexit reflects a larger failure of journalism in general and a more specific failure of slashdot in particular.

People who were capable of thinking about the future would not vote in favor of fracturing Europe. They would have been able to put the broader long-term interests of their own grandchildren ahead of their various minor terrors of foreigners stealing their jobs, especially considering that if 52% hated the EU I'd bet that a much higher percentage hate their own jobs and ought to be glad if some immigrants would steal them.

Same rise of ignorant short-sighted stupidity has made it possible for the Donald of Trump to become a serious contender for the presidency, squatting on his bizarre high chair that he imagines as a throne. Don't look too closely at the legs: One leg for the government haters, one for the Hillary haters, a leg of bigots, and a last leg of overt racists. Yeah, a few Trumpists are smart enough to try to talk nice, but scratch a Trump supporter and you find a hater.

My problem with all of this is that I'm a believer in enlightened self-interest (per Heinlein, even). If people see sufficiently large pictures, then they will see how their private and national selfishness has to be limited for the long-term survival of the human species.

Why don't they see the large pictures? I think it's mostly because the existing economic models, including slashdot's pitiful economic models, drive them to short-term BS journalism and reality TV. Brexit and Trumpism are just natural outcomes. Gawd save us all, but he won't. (Even if he existed, it would be a breach of his divinely insane plan.)

User Journal

Journal Journal: Is Trump a great liar or a terrible liar? 3

Trump is a liar of the lowest level. He mostly uses Level 0 lies of self-contradiction, where the listener don't even need to check the facts. Trump says things like "I am not saying that climate change is just a Chinese conspiracy to destroy American industry, but there are people who are saying that, and I have to say what they said so I can tell you that I am not saying that, even though you just heard me say it. Now vote for me, even if you can't understand what I just said. Make that especially if your can't understand."

Totally self-contradictory, and in this example both sides are false. The Chinese actually see climate change as a business opportunity. They are actively working to make American industry irrelevant while the Koch brothers put their leash on Trump to support their dying industries.

As background, my ontology of lying starts with Level 0 lies of self-contradiction, where you know there's at least one lie without checking anything, though Trump is often lying on both sides.

Level 1 lies are counterfactual statements, where any fool can check the facts. Some debate, but I think confabulation belongs here even though the liar sincerely believes the false memories and continues to reject any contradictory facts.

Level 2 lies are partial truths, which are especially popular with politicians. The most notable difference between Trump and politicians is that Trump rarely includes enough truth to get to the partial level.

Level 3 lies are framing, but I cannot recall a single example of Trump reaching such logical sophistication. Trump lacks the personal credibility to reverse shade the truth, and he lacks the reasoning ability to understand the trick framing of "Have you stopped beating your wife yet?"

User Journal

Journal Journal: Time to repeal Godwin's Law? 2

Is it time to repeal Godwin's Law?

In his younger days as a usenet flamer, Mike wanted to discourage excessive and hyperbolic appeals to the Nazis. Therefore he proposed what has become the eponymous law, but there are times when Nazi comparisons are in order and should NOT terminate the discussion or concede any point. (And usenet is dead, anyway.)

Let me be clear that I do NOT think Trump should be compared to Hitler, though I increasingly wonder if Uncle Joe Stalin might be a fair basis for comparison with the thin-skinned Donald. However I absolutely think that some of Trump's supporters should be compared to Nazi supporters, especially his fanatical Trumpeters with the Brown Shirts, focusing on the period before the Nazis first gained substantial political power.

Unfortunately, the Trumpeters are much better armed than the Brown Shirts. Not in terms of arm muscles. I'm pretty sure the Germans of that time ate little junk food and were probably generally healthier than Americans these days. Nor am I talking about guns. To the contrary, I'm confident that Americans have more guns.

I think the really dangerous weapon the Trumpeters have is the Internet. Remember the pen is mightier than the sword, and Trump and his minions are becoming (or may already be) great experts in destroying their opponents using the Internet. Hillary already seems like a soft target.

The Trump supporters also use the Internet as a communication channel, but their most dangerous use of today's Internet is to bolster their own ignorance by stuffing their own ears and eyes with infinite amounts of bad data. Like the information bubble of the fake conservatives, but much worse and they are deliberately doing it to themselves. The propaganda techniques of Trump and his supporters are worth comparing with the Nazi's techniques.

Isn't it time to repeal Godwin's Law? Could it be done, even by Mike?

User Journal

Journal Journal: FizzBuzz in Swift

The following is my prepared answer for anyone who asks me this stupid fucking question in any interview in the future.

extension Int
  func modBool(modulus: Int) -> Bool
  return (self % modulus).boolValue
for x in 1...100
  print((x.modBool(3) ? "" : "Fuck ") +
    (x.modBool(5) ? "" : "You") +
    ((x.modBool(3) && x.modBool(5)) ? "\(x)" : ""))


User Journal

Journal Journal: So have they actually fixed the moderation? 1

So the answer to my earlier question was "Dropped off slashdot again almost immediately". I have no idea when I visited, but it claims this year.

I actually remember a time when I visited /. fairly often, though it was often quite annoying. Moderation was just one of many problems, but perhaps the most visible and annoying one... Having a very slow week, so maybe I'll look around a bit and see what has changed. Seems unlikely, but maybe some of the changes will be actual improvements?

I can already say that the new prominence of ads does NOT appear to be an improvement, though I agree that the financial model is one of slashdot's biggest and most obvious problems.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Three years after Steve died... 1

I don't think I've written this down anywhere before, so here's my story about the first time I had a face-to-face conversation with Steve Jobs.

I was working for Richard Kerris in Apple Worldwide Developer Relations, on a group called the SWAT team. I was the Cocoa expert on that team, and I had colleagues who had expertise in UNIX internals, Windows development, and the Metrowerks tools.

Our role was to help third-party developers bring their products to Mac OS X, whether they were coming from Windows, Solaris, Mac OS 9, etc. We would look over their code, and consult with them on how to go about porting and/or rewriting their products for the new platform.

I went to Fred Anderson's retirement party which was held at Cafe Macs in Building four of the Infinite Loop campus. I saw Steve there, and I went over to introduce myself. I said "Hi Steve, I'm John Randolph. You may or may not recognize my name, but I used to flame you from time to time before I worked here." He asked me "Why did you stop?" I told him "Well, I work here now, and I respect the chain of command."

At the time we had this conversation, there was a big fight going on between the foot-dragging laggards who wanted to keep using the old Mac Toolbox API (which had been cleaned up considerably and put into a framework we called "Carbon"), and those of us who wanted to get everyone using the NeXTStep-derived "Cocoa" frameworks,

At the previous WWDC, Steve had started the keynote with a bit of theater: a coffin had risen up through a trap door on the stage, in the midst of a cloud of dry ice fog. Steve had opened the coffin to show a big Mac OS 9 box, and he praised OS 9 in a eulogy, to make the point that Apple developers should consider it dead and gone.

So getting back to our conversation.. I told Steve what I was doing on Richard's team, and I said "I know that you can't do this politically, but I wish you could have another coffin on the stage at the next WWDC...." and he said: "With Carbon in it?"

He was grinning. At that point, I realized that I could quit worrying about where Apple's development environment was heading. Steve knew what we needed to do, and in the years that followed, Apple has kept the best of NeXT's technology, and let go of what we didn't need.

We miss you Steve, but we're doing fine. Thanks for the things you made happen.


User Journal

Journal Journal: The tragedy of brain-dead apparatchiki entrusted with the care of children. 6

Earlier today, I read an account of a little girl getting a severe sunburn while on a school field trip, because of an unconscionable policy prohibiting children from possessing sunscreen while at school or on school activities. I looked up the name of the spokesman who had the nerve to try to defend this policy to the press, and wrote her the following e-mail:

Miss Chancellor, you and the pinheads you serve in the Northeast Indecent School District are a tragic example of the kind of abject incompetence that pervades American public schools in the past several decades.

I would urge you to resign and pursue employment in the janitorial services industry, but youâ(TM)re obviously too goddamned stupid to be trusted with cleaning supplies.


Well, it would appear that Miss Chancellor was offended by my criticism, and she replied thusly:

Your comments do not warrant an intelligent response. Clearly - you do not have all the facts.

Now, it's rather unusual for an apparatchik in a shitstorm to bother to respond to any of the angry e-mails they get, so naturally I have replied:

On Jun 6, 2014, at 10:26 AM, Chancellor, Aubrey wrote:

>Your comments do not warrant an intelligent response.

Since youâ(TM)re entirely incapable of an intelligent response, that just works out fine and dandy now, doesnâ(TM)t it?

>Clearly - you do not have all the facts.

The fact is that when you screw up like this, the thing to do is apologize and promise the parents, the child, and the rest of the community that it will never happen again. You donâ(TM)t double down on your idiotic policy of depriving children of sunscreen.

When children are entrusted to you by their parents, your paramount duty is to ensure their safety and well being. it is NOT to sacrifice their welfare to your psychotic need for obedience.


More on this as it develops. Start the popcorn.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Throwing in the towel on Facebook. 7

Last post to FB:

In the time since I created this Facebook account in 2006, I found a bunch of old friends, met many new ones, wasted a whole lot of time, had some arguments that never would have happened in real life, and been frequently annoyed by the business decisions FB has made.

This post will be my last. I will delete this account 48 hours from now. Those of you who want to keep in touch can reach me as always at jcr@mac.com, which I've had for at least a decade.

All's well that ends. I wish you all peace, love and happiness.

It feels like leaving high school. There are people there that I will always care about, some that I love, some that I barely know, some that I have no idea how I met in the first place or why they're in my FB friends list.

A very smart friend of mine is working on changing social media from a site and a vendor that sells the users' info to advertisers, into a protocol that would operate on a peer-to-peer basis, with strong security to ensure that what we write goes to those we wish, and no one else. I hope he succeeds, and I look forward to making a fair bit of cash shorting FB when the writing appears on the wall.

  I will thank my friends who worked on FB, and every user there who ever shared a heartwarming, interesting, inspiring, or even outrageous bit of information that I wouldn't have found otherwise. Congrats to all the FB millionaires and worker bees, I wish them all the best.

I'll still be NSResponder here on /., on StackOverflow and Twitter. The internet is still a lot bigger than Facebook, and I'll see you all around.

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It is not for me to attempt to fathom the inscrutable workings of Providence. -- The Earl of Birkenhead