Saturday, October 03, 2015

"They'll swing back to the belief that they can make people... better."

"Apply cold water to burned area."

I, on the other hand, did not.

Science Wins.

Via Richard Kadrey's Damn Tumblr: "The arm was designed and built just for Isabella by Team Unlimbited volunteer Stephen Davies. On average, prosthetics cost more than $10,000. However, an e-Nable limb ranges from $50 to $150 in price, which means more people can get prosthetic devices!"


"They police us, and spy on us. Tell us that makes us safer..."

"We've never been in more danger."

Incentivizing the wrong things in law enforcement.

And the continued curtailing of the 4th Amendment.  The Fourth Amendment shuffle - The Washington Post: "...if you’re a cop who wants to search a home without a warrant, simply knock on the door, claim to have heard “rustling around” or to have smelled marijuana. Break in and search the home. If you find something illegal, make your arrests and celebrate your success. Just remember to note what you smelled or heard on your report, and be sure to note that you originally knocked on the door after mistaking it for a different one. 

If you don’t find anything illegal, you’re probably going to be fine. It’s expensive and time-consuming for an innocent person to file a civil rights lawsuit over an illegal search. Most won’t find an attorney willing to take the case. Most won’t bother to try. For the few who do, your qualified immunity will make it difficult for them to even get in front of a jury. Again, remember the courts aren’t likely to second-guess your claims about what you heard or smelled, even if your search comes up empty. On the off-chance that your victim somehow gets over those hurdles and gets to trial, you can take comfort in the fact that juries rarely rule against police officers. 

Finally, if you somehow lose in front of a jury (what bad luck you have!), unless the search resulted in bodily injury, your victim isn’t likely to collect much in the way of damages. And unless you’ve done something really egregious, the city or state that employs you will likely indemnify you. The taxpayers will foot the bill. That’s usually the case with your legal representation, too.

Point is, there’s plenty of incentive for you to bend or break the rules. Busts, seizures and arrests are good for your career. Depending on what you find, frequent searches based on little more than hunches will help you know which hunches to trust, making you a better cop. On the other side, there’s almost no incentive to play it by the book. Take the time to get a warrant and the perps get time to move the drugs. You’ll probably do dozens of illegal searches before someone complains, and once that happens, there’s plenty of machinery in place to both protect you from liability and to prevent the victim from collecting. This isn’t to say that all cops want to conduct illegal searches.* Only that the courts have provided a pretty easy-to-follow road map for those who do. But that’s sort of the point. Those are precisely the authorities from whom the Fourth Amendment is supposed to protect us. 

(*Though let’s be honest, finding ways around the Fourth Amendment certainly makes the job a bit easier. And if the courts have made illegal searches this easy, and mostly consequence-free, at some point you have to question what illegal really means in the first place.)"

Propaganda & Pop Culture.

Comic-Strip Propaganda - Hit & Run : ""The U.S. government has a history of inserting propaganda into popular culture, sometimes overtly and sometimes behind the scenes. Comics historian Jeet Heer has dug up a particularly interesting example: Roy Crane's strip Buz Sawyer. Crane not only coordinated his storylines with Washington during World War II and the Cold War, but he sometimes allowed officials to dictate the details of his plots.

In 1952, for example—just a year before a CIA-assisted coup in Iran—Crane set a story in that country. As part of the process of producing it, Roy Crane a State Department official named Eugene V. Brown sent Crane a ten-page memo, explaining in precise detail the plot points the government wanted for Buz Sawyer, along with what purpose those points served. These included finding a way to "stress [the] importance of Private Enterprise" and to portray "the manner in which Communism attempts to discredit development and improvement programs of the West." Crane, meanwhile, should do his best to steer clear of certain delicate topics. "It would be best to avoid any reference to OIL in discussing Iran." Because winning hearts and minds was key, Brown wanted a story showing “a strong bond of friendship” between Buz and an Iranian pilot named Sandhu, the purpose of which was to "provide entry of Buz into local situation on common level with indigenous forces." (Crane followed this direction, although he used the name Ali instead of Sandhu.) Other plot points were designed to provide "further evidence of machinations of Communism" and "display American individual's ingenuity in coping with operations." Six months after the strip appeared, Crane praised Brown's contribution in a letter to Dean Acheson, Truman's secretary of state and one of the key architects of the cold war...

Contemporary entertainers like Kathryn Bigelow (Zero Dark Thirty) and Joel Surnow (24) have been branded as mouthpieces for the U.S. anti-terror agenda, carrying water for the government’s escapades in the Middle East. It’s hard to deny Zero Dark Thirty served up the CIA’s justification for using torture to find Osama bin Laden, and 24 helped normalize the government-friendly idea of torture as an instrument of policy. But—as far as we know!—no one in the U.S. government dictated to Bigelow or Surnow what should be in the work. With Crane, however, we have a clear and well-documented case study in how government officials can micromanage the production of popular culture, a salutary lesson in how propaganda works."

Except, of course - Unreleased: Probe Finds CIA Honcho Disclosed Top Secret Info to Hollywood: "The Defense Department Inspector General’s office has been sitting on a report that former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta disclosed “TOP SECRET” information and other sensitive details two years ago at an event attended by a “Hollywood executive” working on the movie Zero Dark Thirty. In June 2011, when he was director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Panetta discussed the information at a CIA headquarters event honoring participants in the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, according to an unreleased report drafted by the Inspector General’s office and obtained by the Project On Government Oversight (POGO). “During this awards ceremony, Director Panetta specifically recognized the unit that conducted the raid and identified the ground commander by name,” the draft report says. “According to the DoD Office of Security Review, the individual’s name is protected from public release” under federal law, the report says. “Director Panetta also provided DoD information, identified by relevant Original Classification Authorities as TOP SECRET//SI//REL TO USA, AUS, CAN, GBR, NZL, as well as, SECRET/ACCM,” the report says. Panetta was not interviewed for the report, the document says. POGO’s repeated attempts to reach him or a spokesperson for him through the Panetta Institute for Public Policy, his base in California, were unsuccessful."

"Sure, there are times I want to be taken seriously."

"Those times, I don't wear this shirt."

Friday, October 02, 2015

Training - “Lack of activity destroys the good condition of every human being, while movement and methodical physical exercise save it and preserve it.” – Plato

10/2 - stretch, deadlifts [PR 455 w/belt, chalk, mixed grip], situps, backxt, pulldowns, seated rows, pushdowns, sauna, bridges

Beyond The Physical Benefits of Health and Fitness Programs: " is important to understand that everything we do in life is temporary. Yet, the fact that life will someday end isn’t a reason to be miserable each day. I’d rather enjoy the moment instead of worrying about what the future will bring. Whether I’m strong tomorrow, next year, or in fifty years is irrelevant when choosing to be strong today...

I. Vitality 
In a world filled with fitness celebrities who snap selfies wearing next to nothing, some might be surprised that I list vitality as my primary reason to exercise. Merriam-Webster defines vitality as a lively or energetic quality. Exercise is what gives me that feeling. Who wouldn’t want to attain more vitality in their life? I couldn’t imagine anyone who wouldn’t want to feel more vibrant and energized throughout the day. The vitality that I have allows me to get so much more out of life. How can you live life to the fullest if you plod through each day feeling tired and unmotivated? That’s no way to live...

I’d rather feel and act younger than my age. I’m still a big kid at heart...

II. Mental Clarity 
Another benefit of exercise that doesn’t receive adequate attention is what I call mental clarity. In short, my mind operates at a much higher level as a direct result of exercise. Not only is my mind sharper throughout the day, but many of my best thoughts come in between sets of heavy lifting. The mind-body connection is undeniable...

III. Challenge 
There’s a difference between living and existing. I view life as something that is precious and temporary, thus should be cherished. I’m not interested in only existing. In my eyes, an important part of life involves challenging myself to see what I’m made of. I decided a long time ago that I’ll never be the person who sits on his death bed wishing he had done more...

I believe we should all be physically and intellectually challenged on a daily basis. There is no reason why we can’t make time to regularly enhance the body and mind. Forget about sitting back and existing within a self-defined comfort zone. The real treasures of life are found outside of it. Furthermore, regularly challenging the body and mind will make the rest of life’s obstacles much easier to handle. When you become accustomed to regularly testing your physical and mental limits, life doesn’t seem so daunting. No matter how rough it gets, you can at least take comfort in knowing that you’ve become experienced at facing challenges head on. 

IV. Useful 
Functional is an overused word, so I’ll stay away from it. It sure as hell is useful to be strong however. It’s nice to be able to pick something up without breaking your back. I often wonder how anyone who has a choice would opt to be frail and weak...

Strength is a choice that I’m glad I’ve made. If you aren’t strong, you are weak. Simple tasks become physical barriers. There is no logical explanation for choosing weakness over strength. Don’t waste your time trying to drum up an argument. Instead, wrap your hands around a bar and start tapping into the potential of the gift you’ve been given that you call your body. 

V. Feel Good, Look Good 
Last but not least, we can all stop pretending that exercise doesn’t make us feel better about ourselves. There’s nothing wrong with exercising to look and feel good. As useful as it is to carry all of your groceries in one trip, it’s also nice to build a body that you are proud of. You don’t need to exercise just for function. You can also exercise to look and feel better about yourself. Confidence and self-esteem are both incredibly important. Don’t let anyone fool you to believe otherwise. If getting jacked makes you feel better about yourself, go get swole and proudly show off your guns. There’s nothing wrong with being proud of the work you’ve performed, as well as the results. The haters of the world who call you vain are usually just those who are jealous. They aren’t worth your time and certainly shouldn’t be considered when making future decisions. Build the body that you want to develop and be proud of yourself for your efforts."

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

"Let's just take a day."

America Wins.

"... and a little child will lead them."

Always Re-Blog.



They know what they did.

The Eternal Mystery.

"I enjoy chaos and disorder... I'm an entropy fan."

"Perhaps I can make some small contribution in this area myself?"

Gosh, you don't say?

Men are attracted to cheerful women with a trim waist, nice hair and a pleasant voice.  I wonder what amazing, previously unknown things science will discover next!

That's just funny.

Sexbots: Why Women Should Panic - Breitbart: "...male sexual appetites are easily satisfied, despite what women will tell you. Blow jobs really aren’t that difficult, and in any case most blokes are fine with a pizza and a wank. For many men, sex is a nice bonus, but it’s not essential. When you introduce a low-cost alternative to women that comes without all the nagging, insecurity and expense, frankly men are going to leap in headfirst. 

 Another reason men might be enthusiastic about female-free sex is obvious: the sociopathic, man-hating feminism we see so much of on television and in our newspapers today is turning men off dealing with women altogether. Constant whinging about “toxic masculinity,” “manspreading,” “mansplaining,” the bogus gender pay gap and the absurd campus rape culture myth are pushing the sexes apart, fostering mistrust and fear. 

The fact that wacky, misandrist intersectional feminists are an unpopular minority — as a result of their horrid influence, just 18 per cent of women now call themselves feminists — doesn’t matter because they hold court in the media and on campuses, and young women are starting to parrot discredited and absurd nonsense about the “oppressive patriarchy,” picking up on a victimhood script they believe they can leverage for social and professional advantage. 

 In response, men are simply checking out, giving up on women and retreating into porn and video games. I call it the “sexodus,” and its immediate victims aren’t men, but women, who are being consigned to singledom as men lose interest in them or are simply too exhausted or fearful of the social consequences of approaching girls romantically. 

The truth is, men get along okay without women, unlike women, who become shrieking, neurotic messes if they’re still single in their 30s. Sorry, no offence, but it’s true: women have been getting steadily unhappier since the Second World War, when they first entered the workplace in large numbers. It sounds bizarre, but ever since the rise of feminism, every decade has seen another slump in female morale. Women now report themselves more generally depressed and more likely to think about suicide than at any time in history. (The vast majority of suicides are still men, by the way. Women talk about it endlessly, but rarely pull it off.)

The fight for women’s “equality” has always been absurd: why would a woman want to step down to the lower status of being equal with men? Why should women be badgered into choosing to work over having babies and being happy? Why are feminists lying to women that they can look however they want — fat, hairy armpits, piercings, blue hair — and still be content? Women were told by feminists that they could “have it all” — the career, the husband, the kids and the book club. But it was a lie. What they’ve ended up with instead is a tiny apartment in an “up and coming” bit of town, friends they hate, a string of disastrous and emotionally unfulfilling past relationships and a cat."

The inanity of zero tolerance in schools.

Replacing reasoning and critical thinking with rote regulations.  Teen Kicked Off Football Team Because He Protected a Blind Kid From a Bully - Hit & Run : "Zero tolerance means precisely that: zero tolerance—even for a student who had a very good reason to pick a fight with the school bully. A student at Huntington Beach High School in California has been widely celebrated all over the internet for protecting a fellow student—a blind teenager—from a bully’s violent assault. Video footage of the incident—courtesy of The Daily Mail—clearly shows the bully repeatedly punching the defenseless blind teen in the face until the third student walks up and knocks out the bully with a single punch. The intervener then assists the blind teen in escaping to safety...

The school suspended the student from the football team, and are investigating the incident to determine whether harsher measures are warranted. Meanwhile, the kid’s supporters have started a petition to convince the district to reconsider. According to Hot Air: The online petition to reinstate him is already north of 25,000 signatures as I write this. I assume the school will eventually cave and vacate the suspension at least, partly because even the criminal code in a state as blue as California permits violence in defense of another(provided you use no more than is reasonably necessary to end the threat) and partly because America looooves rough justice and is going to hound school administrators until they do the right thing here. 

This is what zero tolerance looks like: harsh, automatic punishments for teens who broke stupid rules, or had good reasons to break sensible, inflexible rules. This is why a school called the cops on a 13-year-old who kissed a girl. It’s why administrators routinely suspend students who play with toy guns, or make shooting gestures with her hands, or make up stories about guns. It’s why a student who didn’t bring drugs to school was disciplined for bringing drugs to school. And it’s why the temporary arrest of Ahmed Muhamed is part of an outrageous pattern of paranoid school policing, regardless of whether he built his clock himself."

The Cult of Children [& Parenting.]

The Red Pill Parent |: "[People] will try to convince you of the logic that children come first, that children are the future, that all of that which makes them better is more important than anything else. This is bullshit. Do you think cavemen sat around in caves all day playing and socially interacting with their babies? Do you think they had some kind of fresh-gazelle-delivery service that allowed him to interact with the children directly? Do you think the mothers were not under exactly the same survival condition, needing to forage for carrots, potatoes, berries, etc, while the men hunted and built structures? Do you think the “children” came first in any other era of humanity? If so, you are very sadly mistaken. 

Children are more than capable of getting everything they need to know about how to live simply by watching their parents live a happy life together. This is how humans did things for eons, changing that order and putting the “children first” is frankly perverse and the beginning of the destruction of the family. Children are more than information sponges, they are blank minds that want desperately to be adult. Children want to understand everything that everyone around them understands, which is why a parent telling a child that you’re “disappointed” in them is more effective than a paddling. If you focus on children, you are frankly just spoiling them with attention that they will never receive in the real world. If instead you focus on yourself and your spouse, you will raise children that see you putting yourself... and your marriage/partnership as an important part of what you do each day. Don’t put the children first. That’s essentially like negotiating with a terrorist, they’ll only make more demands on you until the cops storm the plane and lots of people get shot...

There are doubtless benefits that come from elevating parenthood to the status of a religion, but there are obvious pitfalls as well. Parents who do not feel free to express their feelings honestly are less likely to resolve problems at home. Children who are raised to believe that they are the center of the universe have a tough time when their special status erodes as they approach adulthood. Most troubling of all, couples who live entirely child-centric lives can lose touch with one another to the point where they have nothing left to say to one another when the kids leave home. In the 21st century, most Americans marry for love. We choose partners who we hope will be our soulmates for life. When children come along, we believe that we can press pause on the soulmate narrative, because parenthood has become our new priority and religion. We raise our children as best we can, and we know that we have succeeded if they leave us, going out into the world to find partners and have children of their own. Once our gods have left us, we try to pick up the pieces of our long neglected marriages and find new purpose. Is it surprising that divorce rates are rising fastest for new empty nesters? Perhaps it is time that we gave the parenthood religion a second thought..."

As usual, Carlin knew it first.

No wonder we're all fucked up.

"...if your only reason for supporting a law is the Constitution, or because Congress said so, you are officially stupid."

Opinion Vs. Stupidity | Scott Adams Blog: "During an American election cycle you will see a lot of “opinions” that looks like this: “The Constitution clearly gives us the right to do X. Therefore, that’s the way it should be.” That sounds like an opinion, right?  But it really isn’t.  Here’s why. The Founders wisely made it hard to change the Constitution, but they did give us the tools to do it. And we have changed it in the past, e.g. slavery. So it is stupid to hold the opinion that we should do what the Constitution says, no matter what, when the authors of the document had no such intention. And common sense tells us that society ALWAYS changes over time. The Founders knew situations change (they were revolutionaries after all) and sometimes people get better ideas...

 We have a similar situation with laws passed by Congress. Look at the debate about illegal immigrants. You hear a lot of people arguing that the law-breakers must be deported because they broke a law, and we are a land of laws. On a conceptual level, a nation must have laws in order to function. But again, the Constitution explains in great detail how to change laws. They change all the time. Change is the normal condition. If you think illegal aliens need to leave because it is the law, that’s not an opinion. That’s stupidity, because we can change the laws any way we want. All that matters is what we want, and what makes sense, not what has already been written down somewhere. Let’s make wise decisions first, then force the laws to agree with us.  Americans aren’t rule-followers. It isn’t in our DNA. We are revolutionaries. We are entrepreneurs. Often we are total assholes. But I sure hope we never become a nation of obedient rule-followers. The only laws I plan to respect, now or ever, are the ones that make sense to me and are a net positive for humans. That feels American to me. You won’t see me obeying any laws because someone I have never met decided it would be a good idea.  I literally feel offended when anyone suggests that my life should be guided by the wisdom and fairness of dead slave owners...

The nature of capitalism is that innovation often requires breaking some sort of law or social convention. A few years ago I blogged that a company like Uber was not possible because taxis had legal monopolies. Then Uber decided to ignore all of those laws, or change them. And in so doing they are on track to be the largest company in the world. I identify with Uber, not dead patriots that pooped in holes and raped slaves hundreds of years ago. I’m sure the Founders were awesome when viewed in the context of their day, but maybe we need to update our heroes every few centuries to avoid this kind of awkwardness...

As a citizen of the United States, if your only reason for supporting a law is the Constitution, or because Congress said so, you are officially stupid. But if you obey laws that make sense, and violate the ones that don’t, you are as American as the Founders of the country and our illegal immigrants. Here’s a little thought experiment for you. I will describe two groups of people and you can decide which ones to deport: 1. Hard-working people who took huge risks to live in America so their children could have better lives. 2. People who believe all rules should be obeyed, even if the rules are senseless and inhumane. I’d like to deport that second group, just to improve the average."

Training - "We will all die. We will all be in a lot of pain. It's all coming our way... it's part of life. But in the meantime, you might as well be a fucking savage... and train like a motherfucker."

9/30 - press [PR 170, w/belt], chins, dips, db press/pike pushup, alt db curls, speed bag

"If there's one thing that I believe wholeheartedly it's environment is stronger than will. And the illusion in our head is that our will trumps environment... if you are around a bunch of positive athletes, you become a positive athlete. If you're around a bunch of unhealthy shitbags, you become an unhealthy shitbag. In spite of your will. Your will is what tricks you into thinking you'll be different. Once you're aware of that, your will is what gives you the chance to change environments. And then your life follows with change afterwards."