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Though I saw it all around
Never thought I could be affected
Thought that we'd be the last to go
It is so strange the way things turn

Monday, February 22, 2016

Linkee-poo finds me somebody to love

"They have no problem believing a man can fly. They recoil, however, when that man is black." If you follow Saladin Ahmed on twitter, he has posted many, many examples of a diverse comics sphere (male and female, all races) before the 50s white washing of the world. The article is about more than Star Wars and superhero pictures and makes a lot of good points about inclusion, the stories we tell ourselves, the needs of narrative, and how having a more inclusive media leads to a more inclusive society. And we see some of the backlash against that in our current politics (which started in the late 60s when unions started recruiting minorities and the passage of the Civil Rights Act which all lead to the GOP Southern Strategy of Nixon). (Grokked from Mary Robinette Kowal)

The ultra minimalist Gittler guitar. Um, okay. I know lots of people say that for an electric guitar all that's making the sound is the pickups and the strings, but that hasn't really been my experience. Not sure I entirely like the sound of this (it might be better if he was getting line feed from the guitar instead of micing the amplifier). (Grokked from Dan)

"Once again, science ruins a really good story." The Great Wall of Kabul and the ghosts that lay within. (Grokked from Chia Evers)

"The capacity of wind power generation worldwide reached 432.42 gigawatts (GW) at the end of 2015, up 17 percent from a year earlier and surpassing nuclear energy for the first time, according to data released by global industry bodies." Milestone achieved. (Grokked from Dan)

I sense a great disturbance in the Force, as if a billion fish farted all at the same time.

"The only possible explanations for this are incompetence or dishonesty on the part of the FBI. Incompetence, if they didn’t realize that resetting the Apple ID password could prevent the iPhone from backing up to iCloud. Dishonesty, if they directed the county to do this knowing the repercussions, with the goal of setting up this fight to force Apple to create a back door for them in iOS. I’m not sure which to believe at this point." A little on some of the technical considerations around the FBI vs Apple fight. (Grokked from Dan)

Yep, no need for gun control. Again, it's hardly ever a good guy with a gun who stops a bad guy with a gun. It's that the bad guy gets tired or sloppy.

In case you ever wondered why the US military trains and keeps bases all over the world, here's a reason why. Because driving an M1A1 in the desert is a whole lot different than driving them in snow and ice (and different in mud). These are good lessons to learn before you need them. Note the demonstration of Newtons Laws of Motion. While ice isn't a vacuum, it does have a lower friction-coefficient than other surfaces. Also, this isn't for getting experience driving a tank over snow and ice, this is also to work out how to maintain and repair those items in cold weather climes. (Grokked from Dan)

"Republican presidential candidate John Kasich acknowledged humans’ contribution to climate change Saturday, though he stopped short of accepting that humans are the main driver of the global problem." He must have missed us in Ohio, because he's now toast. Of course he later corrected to saying he didn't know exactly how much human activity has contributed to climate change. Which, as the article points out, is a losing proposition. "Despite expressing support for renewable energy in Vermont this weekend, Kasich signed a bill in 2014 that froze Ohio’s Renewable Energy Standards for two years… however, Kasich did say that the idea of freezing the standards indefinitely was 'unacceptable,' and that he wanted to 'work with the Ohio General Assembly to craft a bill that supports a diverse mix of reliable, low-cost energy sources while preserving the gains we have made in the state’s economy.'" Dear John, good news, we already have one. It's the one you signed the freeze order on. Come back home, there's plenty of work for you to do here. You haven't completely wrecked out economy in Ohio. Yet. (Grokked from Robert J Bennett)

Your government at work. "Britain's surveillance agency GCHQ, with aid from the US National Security Agency, intercepted and stored the webcam images of millions of internet users not suspected of wrongdoing, secret documents reveal." And now you know why I usually tape over the integrated webcam, you know, besides the various hacks into Flash which allows people to remotely activate your computer's camera. (Grokked from Xeni)

Kasich apologizes for his comment about women coming out of the kitchens to support him. Which was taken out of context (he really meant for his campaigns in the 70s, which is still kinda out of touch with those times). 'Cause he loves the women. Except he likes to screw them over to advance his hard right conservative politics. Don't let the media fool you, Kasich is only a moderate in comparison to the other looney tunes running for President in the GOP. He's hard right in his politics.

You keep using that word, I don't think it means what you think it means. Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach calls the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the League of Women Voters communists. Rep Darrell Issa believes closing GITMO is just like the Trail of Tears. And then Dr. Ben Carson doesn't think Pres. Obama is black enough. He then goes on to state he's never experienced racism from the GOP, only the Democrats talking about racism is the real racism, and he's offering a pony in every pot and a unicorn for all his voters.

Hey Kettle, Pot is on the phone and wants to tell you something. Although Gingrich is really saying that Fox and Friends are providing Trump a lot of free press and promotional space, not that it's the politics of the Fox Network and their development of the Angry White Base that Trump is exploiting that is leading him to win.

God is back to his old tricks again. "Sen. Ted Cruz's (R-TX) father said last year on a syndicated radio program that his son decided to launch a bid for the White House after his wife, Heidi, was sent a sign from God… Cruz said he then felt as if a 'cloud of the Holy Spirit' had filled the room." The jokes just write themselves, folks.

"Look, I get it. Honest men differ. A lot of good people describe these things as torture. The definitive legal judgment under which the agency was operating and you know sooner or later, Robert, someone has gotta call balls and strikes and that's the way it is." Dear Gen. Hayden, with all due respect, let me call bullshit on this. If you want to excuse the CIA operatives who actually did the torture because they had a legal ruling allowing them to, then we have to prosecute those who called the balls and strikes. This is NOT a question, if you have operatives that have no historical context, who can't see beyond the limited viewpoint offered by a legal memo, then you are running an organization that needs to be shut down because it's being staffed by imbiciles. Also, I'll note, you didn't say we got operational, actionable, intelligence from our torture programs. If you want to say that we saved lives or stopped attacks, or eliminated opposition leaders, I want you to show your work. It can easily be washed to sanitize any instances. After all, it's been nearly a decade and it's not like the opposition doesn't know what happened.

Majority leader in Senate which does not work promises to not do any work.

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