Who Doesn’t Like The Deadpool?

  • I am not a fan of the comic book movie genre. For the most part all the Spider Mans, X Men, etc… were either just a meh, or I never saw them. With one exception. Deadpool. I re-watched it last night and had forgotten what a good movie it is. The opening scene alone is genius. There’s not many films that can be funny, poke fun of themselves and their industry, break the fourth wall, have killer special effects, and be an honest to god love story. The Wade and Vanessa segment of them falling in love just makes you smile. And to get away with the stereotypical Dopinder as the Indian taxi driver… well I’m not sure you could do that with today’s woke diversity culture. If you didn’t like Deadpool, then we can’t be friends. And I have a small confession. I might have a bit of a man-crush on Deadpool. Wait, that sounded weird.
  • This is a very easy to understand explanation of how the new mRNA vaccine works. What we managed to create, test, and roll out in under a year boggles the mind.
  • I may have unfairly bagged on the new Wonder Woman films look the other day. I thought it looked like it was filmed with an ultra sharp camcorder. I then watched a couple other movies and they all looked the same way. Turns out it may be due to my fancy new ginormous 4K TV and something called the soap opera effect. This article describes what may be going on. In a nutshell the TV may be applying motion smoothing to the standard film frame rate of 24. I’ll be experimenting today. Stay tuned.
  • Video appeared yesterday that seems to show Canadian police forcibly arresting a man for having a New Years party with, gasp, six people. WTF? Is this really what we want people? Oh, but that won’t happen here you say. New York is currently attempting to pass a law that would “permit state officials to remove and detain state residents if they were deemed to be a “danger to public health.” What could possibly go wrong?
  • I nearly spit my coffee out laughing when I saw the Portland mayor hold a press conference and admit “My good faith efforts at de-escalation have been met with ongoing violence and even scorn from radical Antifa and anarchists”. He’s now asking for state and federal help to stop the violence. Wait, do you hear that? It’s a tiny little violin playing. The people of Portland can suck on it. They voted (and re-voted) these clowns into office. You made your bed, now lay in it. I have no sympathy. They’re going to have to figure out how to solve it on their own.
  • Who would have thought that an idea as simple as we should audit the spending of the Fed would be controversial?
  • Todays the day. I’ve been planning to visit my garage gym again for months now. Today I will. Question is, will I use it or simply admire it? Stay tuned.

Song of the day: Salt-N-Pepa – Shoop

More Power Scotty!

  • I’ve been out of technology for roughly eight years now. When a tech challenge comes along it’s a painful process to try and dredge up past knowledge of how things work. Like trying to start an old lawnmower that sat in the garage for several years. Runs great once it starts, but takes a lot of pulling, fiddling with adjustments, and a few curse words before it gets going. The brand new ginormous TV was delivered and installed in a room we’ve mostly never used before. All is good except the Wi-Fi signal in that room is pitiful, resulting terrible buffering when watching my Real Housewives episodes. No problem, just install a Google Wi-Fi mesh network. And… the Wi-Fi signal is even worse than it was before. Long story short, there were multiple factory resets, some cable changes, changed the router to bridge mode to get rid of the double NAT, a small prayer to the network gods, and we’re back in business with reasonable speeds. All in all, probably still easier than helping grandma set up a Zoom call.
  • To become a politician you have to be a massive, tone-deaf narcissistic asshat. After De Blasio told everyone to stay away from the New York New Years eve ball drop, he and his wife showed up and danced on stage. Sometimes it’s unfortunate we’ve become too civilized to simply run people like this out of town.
  • Continuing with yesterday’s Fed vs state and local thread… New York is sitting on 2/3 of the Covid vaccines they have. It must be Trumps fault.
  • Please look at this chart and tell me where the science is showing that masks are working. Montana implemented a mask mandate and South Dakota didn’t. Can you spot the difference? You can’t even talk about correlation and causation because there’s nothing that points to any sort of correlation. Here’s the chart of California. Please show me where in the data it shows masks are doing anything. Japan was a fanatical mask wearing society before all this and they’re now seeing a spike in Covid. How could this be? Again, this doesn’t “prove” that masks don’t work. I’m simply saying that at this point we should be seeing signals in the data that would give some indication of correlation, and it isn’t there. You know, science and all.
  • Just like last year, the entry date for a big running race is coming up. And just like last year (well, many years if you include the annual Leadville 100 mountain bike race) I spend roughly two weeks wondering if I could do it. It’s beyond a stretch goal and the odds of a disastrous failure and injury would be very high. I think I’m mostly interested in seeing if I’m mentally strong enough to commit to the training and perseverance it would take to accomplish something like that. And bragging rights. And then I come to my senses and back away from the keyboard. But that little voice in the back of my head keeps whispering…
  • It’s day 11 from my Covid vaccine and, according to researchers, I should have roughly 80% protection at this point. Another 10 days until my booster and then I’ll be immortal. Or was it invincible? I get those confused.
  • Speaking of immortal, watched the new Wonder Woman movie last night. I never saw the first one, so it didn’t make much sense to me. Not the strongest script ever produced, that’s for sure. But what really bugged me was the film format. They filmed it in 4K Ultra HD, whatever that is. They must have filmed it in a higher frame rate because it just didn’t look right. It looks like some sort of hyper-realistic video. It didn’t look like film at all. I didn’t care for it.

Song of the day: Spin Doctors – What Time Is It? (live TV 1993)

The Authentic Voice

  • I don’t have a list of resolutions for the New Year. No goals that probably won’t be met. No platitudes about becoming a better person or striving for world peace. I’m in a unique place in life. I’ve been very blessed. Through a combination of dumb luck, good planning, seizing opportunities, and hard work, Mrs. Troutdog and I find ourselves at a happy crossroads. Retirement is looming around the corner. What is that going to look like? Will I spend my waning years puttering around my workbench in the garage? Will we be taking exotic motorcycle trips across southeast Asia? Maybe I’ll finally become a world famous YouTube star, or figure out what it is I’m actually trying to say with this blog. Perhaps I’ll start taking pictures again or figure out once and for all which of my 27 hobbies I want to focus on? When you were younger the saying was “what do you want to be when you grow up?”. Well, here I am all grown up and I still don’t know. So that’s my plan for the year – to try and get a handle on what I want my remaining time on this planet to look like. To find my authentic voice. What do I want to say, do, and leave behind. It’s not an achievable plan. But I think it’s a good theme for the New Year.
  • I finally made the Machaca. I think it came out pretty damn good. It will certainly be a do-over. There’s so many things you can do with it – tortas, street tacos, breakfast, burritos. Good stuff.
  • I don’t know why I find this so frightening. The engineering is damn impressive. It’s amazing where we are from a technology perspective. I guess I just don’t trust human nature. The sci-fi conspiracy theorist in me envisions getting tased by one of these things as I try to enter a store without my Covid-39 passport.
  • You’re already seeing the media reporting the administration is bungling the rollout of the China virus vaccine. What a disaster, only 3 million doses have been given by the end of the year. We were promised 20 million dammit! Ignoring what an amazing R&D accomplishment this has been, the media conveniently doesn’t report that 14 million doses have been shipped. The bottleneck is at the local level. The same thing happens with every hurricane, wildfire, and flood. Clearly we don’t teach civics any more. We are a republic of independent states. The federal government can supply resources, but it’s up to the individual states and cities to implement those resources. When you saw those rows of empty school buses unused and flooded while people frantically tried to evacuate during Katrina, that was the state and cities fault. The federal government (FEMA) prepositioned those assets and the local authorities didn’t use them. It’s a dangerous road to go down letting people think that a massive, federal big brother is in charge of everything. The framers would be appalled at what their republic has become.
  • This article about the imprisonment of Assange is a bit convoluted, but a good read. What we’ve done to him is a travesty. I really liked this statement: “Whether a society is truly free is determined by how it treats its dissidents, those who live and speak and think outside of permissible lines, those who effectively subvert ruling class aims.”
  • I finished my last shift and last task of the year, New Years eve, in a fitting fashion. Giving a soap suds enema to a confused, combative patient who hadn’t pooped in a week and vomiting up tube feeds every thirty minutes. Thanks 2020 and fuck you. Moving on to 2021!
  • Finishing up with pics of the best dogs on the planet, the mighty Vizsla.

Song of the day: Beck – Loser (Live 2003)

The Hive Revolution

  • We’ve had four generally accepted industrial revolutions. Coal, Gas, Electronics and Nuclear, and the Internet. The deep thinkers and Wall Street analysts have been trying to predict what the fifth revolution, or 5IR as it’s known, will be. I postulate that it will be the advent of the Hive and that this pandemic will be looked back on as the catalyst that catapulted 5IR forward. The Hive is the collective, distributed workforce. It’s a gig economy. It no longer matters where you live. Virtually all labor can be sourced online. The pandemic forced companies to allow “work from home”. Many companies are dumping their expensive real estate, realizing it’s no longer needed. Remote workspace companies sputtered, but will roar back once humans can interact again. Every possible labor specialty is now available online – billions of individuals busy producing their specialized skill, available to everyone from anywhere at all times. Businesses are increasingly becoming simple aggregators of the hives collective work.
  • The problem with the Hive is the Queen. Hives exist to serve the Queen. If the Hive were a true distributed system we’d have capitalist bliss. Unfortunately we have a few Queens in the form of Amazon, Google, AT&T, Disney, Microsoft, Fox, Twitter, and Facebook. These few bemouths collectively control most of what you purchase, watch, read, and your work environment. They actively shut down and censor any opinions they don’t agree with. They’ve made it impossible for a small mom and pop retail store to compete. Microsoft has implemented “productivity measuring tools” in all its software. Workers are not to be trusted. These companies literally know everything there is to know about you. Where you go, the time of day you went, how long you spent there, your search habits, reading habits, shopping patterns, how much you earn, what you watch, and most importantly – your political thoughts and opinions.
  • You can’t blame the Queens. Queens are just doing what Queens will do. The ability to rein in a Queen rests with the collective voice of the people in the form of their elected officials. Our government is intended to represent us, to step in when a Queen gets a little too rambunctious. Therein lies our problem. The government has become a little too enamored with the power they wield. They see themselves as a Queen, a new ruling class of elites. They’ve stopped protecting the Hive. Us folks in the lower classes have been the proverbial frog in the pot of slowly boiling water, blissfully unaware. This pandemic and the election suddenly lifted the skirt a bit and gave us a peak. Our elected officials are drunk on power, printing money, trillions out thin air to distribute to their friends and donors. They’ve shut down hundreds of thousands of business, gone forever. Meanwhile they’ve allowed the Walmarts and Home Depots to stay open. You can’t go to your local coffee shop or to get your hair cut, but you can happily go to Target to score some Black Friday deals. You’re not allowed to eat in a restaurant, yet you can go to Costco and wander around eating hot dogs from the food court. The Hive outnumbers the Queen but at some point critical mass is reached and the majority of the Hive become zombies of the state. China and North Korea come to mind. The people of those countries have become mindless puppets. The ability for free thinking people to express an independent thought has disappeared. The collective Hive will turn on anyone who resists the state. The government has used the Queens to frighten the Hive into submission. Don’t believe me? Try to go shopping without a mask on. Try to post an unflattering news story about the Bidens, or question climate change on Twitter or YouTube and watch it get taken down. Facebook will flag it with a fact checked as untrue label and the commenters will pounce, labeling you a flat earther.
  • So is it too late for our Hive? We’ve allowed the state to shut down business, mandate face coverings, and limit interactions with other humans, including members of your own family. Airlines and countries are actively pursuing a Covid passport that will be needed to travel. Spain will be keeping databases of people who refuse the vaccine. Officers of the state shut down business at will. Airlines eject families because two year olds aren’t wearing masks. Theaters have police remove a disabled child for not wearing a mask. Surfers are arrested for surfing alone, in contradiction to pandemic law. The state is changing election and immigration laws as fast as they can go, all to improve their ability to stay in office. How long do you think it will be before a social credit system is in place that will impact your ability to get a job, travel, or post your thoughts freely on the internet? I fear it may be too late already. However, there is unrest. You’re starting to see daily acts of rebellion, of pushing back against the state. Roughly four million people became first time gun owners this year. All available ammo has been scooped up. The lockdowns are beginning to produce pockets of resistance. Will it be enough? Will the thinking Hive start driving out the elites, or has critical mass already been reached? Americans are a unique group of people. It will be interesting to watch.
  • Speaking of the pandemic that shall not be named, take a look at this graph of the case curve of all 50 states. Notice anything? The curves are almost identical in shape for every state. Lockdowns, no lockdowns, masks, no masks, it doesn’t seem to have made a difference in the outcome. The virus is going to do what viruses do. We could have printed that same several trillion dollars, used it to protect the elderly and nursing homes, shore up hospital capacity, and kept our economy flowing. But hey, at least you’ll get $600 dollars.

Song of the day: Sex Pistols – God Save The Queen

A Thought Experiment

  • I’d like you do a little thought experiment. A little contrarian thinking if you will. Wearing a cloth mask is being touted as the only way we’re going to defeat our current pandemic. Ok. Here’s question one. If masks were effective, wouldn’t you expect to see Covid case rates drop significantly where mask mandates are in place? How come you can’t find a single location in this country that can point to a statistically significant drop in cases after a mask mandate? Take LA for example. The people in that city and state are mask zealots. You’re going to get yourself a beatdown in that city if you don’t wear a mask 24/7. Yet, with all that mask compliance, their case rates are soaring. Why is that? You could make the negative argument – just think how much worse it would be if we didn’t wear the masks? Then why aren’t cities without mask mandates exponentially worse than those with them? My point is that it’s now been long enough that we should start seeing signals in the data. Please find me anything that even remotely looks like correlation. You can’t because there isn’t any. Question number two. If a simple cloth mask can prevent me from getting Covid, then I should be able to work on our Covid floor wearing a much more comfortable mask than what I currently do. Yet for some reason the hospital mandates that I wear an N95 mask, procedure mask, face shield, gown and gloves when entering a Covid room. Why is that? I thought a simple bandana was protecting everyone? Don’t get me wrong, as I’ve said many times, I firmly believe wearing a mask has the potential to lower the transmitted viral load and thus may result in a more mild illness. That’s pretty important if you’re in a high risk category. That is NOT the same thing as preventing you from getting Covid.
  • Speaking of the disease that originated in a location which we cannot mention without being labeled as xenophobic, the high priest of Covid Dr Facui, told us back in March that in the history of respiratory borne viruses asymptomatic transmission has never been the driver of outbreaks. Then he changed his tune and we implemented massive lockdowns and mask mandates. And now the data is suggesting, wait for it, Covid is not being spread by asymptomatic transmission. The man’s opinion has consistently drifted in the wind. We shouldn’t wear masks, asymptomatic transmission isn’t a driver of outbreaks, and now the number people required for herd immunity changes based upon public opinion. Why is the media so enamored with this guy?
  • Kamala Harris said some of her favorite childhood memories were of celebrating Kwanzaa. Except she was born before it was invented and it took decades to even become a thing. She moved to Quebec Canada as teenager with her single, Indian mom who was Hindu. What part of a politicians soul is missing that they can utter whatever nonsense thing comes into their head because they think it will make them popular? And why do you even listen to them?
  • And speaking of elections, did you know that we’ve had three presidential elections that took over 100 days to resolve? I didn’t. My point isn’t that I think Trump will win this one (he won’t), but that this is not a new thing. It’s a pity we don’t teach much in the way of useful history anymore. Or journalism.
  • When you adjust daily Covid case rates based upon number of tests run, the case rate hasn’t much changed since April. The media’s drive to report only the most simplistic data will result in our eventual decline to Idiocracy. If you haven’t watched that movie, go find it. It’s really where we’re headed.
  • A court in Shanghai sentenced a citizen journalist to four years in prison Monday after finding her guilty of “picking quarrels and provoking trouble” by reporting on China’s early coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan. Thank god we don’t have thought police here.
  • I may have convinced a friend to descend into the dark hole of gear acquisition that is motorcycle riding. I shall be conducting an information overload today by sending him countless links to motorcycle related videos and gear reviews. He’s already signed up for his first motorcycle class. Resistance is futile.

Song of the day: Propellerheads feat: Miss Shirley Bassey – History Repeating

What’s The Definition?

  • The other day I was accused of being xenophobic. I’d received my Covid vaccine and posted it to the social medias and said: “Got my anti-Wuhan plague vaccination”. Someone posted they were glad I got the vaccine, but did I really need to add the xenophobic comment? This is not the first time I’ve referred to SARS-CoV-2 as something originating from China. I believe I’ve also called it the China plague, China virus, and early on I think I called it the Wuhan bat soup virus. Colloquial naming of viruses based upon their place of origin is not new – MERS, Asian flu, Hong Kong flu, Spanish flu, West Nile, Norwalk virus, Zika virus, etc… Having said that, I clearly wasn’t using a common colloquial name. I was using a location name as a derogatory term. I’m bothered by the media’s rush to immediately whitewash where this virus originated from. The damn thing came from Wuhan China and lack of transparency is preventing us from knowing if it was from a lab or mother nature just doing her thing. I’m angry at the government of China and what they’ve done to world with this pandemic. I’m angry at their seeming lack of remorse, the cover-up, the buying up of global PPE supplies before the rest of the world realized what was coming, and the lack of aid they’ve contributed to combat the virus. In short, the government of China is not our friend. The definition of xenophobia is “fear and hatred of strangers or foreigners or of anything that is strange or foreign”. I see myself as one of the least racist or xenophobic people you’ll meet. In my head I assume everyone can separate feelings about a government vs the individual citizens. Of course I’m not blaming the general population of China or Asian people for this pandemic. But after reading that comment and thinking about it, I realize what I think and what I write may not be perceived the same way by others. Especially, in this case, someone who’s of Asian descent. I’m an average white dude in the United States. I have no concept of what it feels like to be a minority. Thinking about it I can see that some folks may not get that I’m referring to the collective government and not people when I make derogatory comments. Now, I personally think we’ve become a little hypersensitive with our outrage culture. I would assume that if I say “Mexican drug money” most thinking people would realize I’m referring to the Cartels, not the Mexican people as a whole. But maybe not? In my push to be witty and brilliant, maybe I tiptoed across the line into perceived racism? If I did, it wasn’t what was intended. I’m not going to stop writing in fear of possibly offending someone. But I will make more of an effort to put myself in someone else’s shoes and think more before I commit words to virtual paper.
  • In a related note, when I posted the aforementioned comment, I included a picture of the little sticker they gave me when I got my shot. It said something like “I got vaccinated. #StopCovid”. I deleted the post. Why? The sticker also had the name of my employer. After thinking about it, in this age of outrage cancel culture I don’t trust the thought police. I find it frightening that it’s entirely conceivable the censors at Facebook and the Karen’s of the world could ensure this goes back to my employer and cost me my job. It saddens me that I even have to think that.
  • On a more positive note (not), Rand Paul released his annual 2020 Festivus Report on government waste. Take time to read through it. If that doesn’t make you mad, I don’t know what will. You do realize this is your money they’re spending, right? As in, the money you see deducted from your paycheck every month. I’m not sure people grasp that sometimes.
  • I just started the series “Mr. Robot”. Very good so far. Soon to be even better on the spectacularly ginormous TV that is soon to be installed in the new living room.

Song of the day: Fatboy Slim – Weapon Of Choice

I Am A Killer

  • Over the years we’ve kept a fun holiday tradition going. Seeing as we don’t live in a big city we have the option to go out in the forest and cut down our own Christmas tree. Wait, you mean Christmas trees don’t come prepackaged from a local parking lot? A large group of us gather and bring enough food to feed an army. A large bonfire is built and adult beverages are consumed. Kids slide down hills on sleds and dogs race around barking happily and making general nuisances of themselves. A great time is had by all, then sometime in the late afternoon we remember why we are actually there. Everyone troops out into the forest, finds their perfect tree and drags it back to the vehicles. (don’t worry, it’s sanctioned by the forest service, we buy permits and only go to approved areas) It’s a neat tradition that gives a little more meaning to your tree each year. This year was no different. Except that a number of days after we got home life got in the way and we’re not going to be able to put the tree up this year. No big deal other than I’d already cut down a tree. I don’t know anyone who needs a Christmas tree at this late date. I killed a tree for no reason and I feel really bad about it. I’m going to have to find a way to plant a tree or something to get rid of my guilt. Anyone have any ideas of a worthy cause related to trees?
  • These people are absolute fucking garbage. The worst. I’m referring of course to our ruling class in Washington. These scumbags helped encourage their states to shut down and kill local business. They’ve cratered a booming economy and done nothing but spread fear and panic. They spent months now arguing over a “Covid” spending bill. They carefully positioned the optics to look like they were arguing over how much money to distribute to the people. The left villainized the right, accusing them of not caring about people. My god, they shrieked, we have to help the people who are suffering the most. Do something! Conveniently they waited until the election was over and then managed to pass a new Covid relief bill. Printed 1 Trillion dollars out of thin air. Whew, at least the little people will get a massive $600. Don’t spend it all at once now. What’s the part they never mentioned? Hundreds upon hundreds of BILLIONS of dollars in pork. Aid to other countries. Millions in new government programs. $26 million for salaries and expenses for the Office of Diversity and Inclusion (I kid you not). $167 million to the office of arts and humanities. $1.4 Billion for something called Asia R.I.A. I wonder if any of these politicians would have the guts to explain this to a restaurant owner who’s gone of of business due to this China plague? To repeat myself, these politicians are absolute fucking garbage. Yes, I’m pissed.
  • Got my first dose of the anti-Wuhan plague vaccine today. Haven’t turned into a zombie. Yet. Maybe it happens with the second dose? I feel powerful antibodies coursing through my system. Soon, I shall be able to run naked through the Covid unit at work sans N95. Ok, maybe not naked. That might be an HR issue.
  • I came home yesterday and surprised Mrs Troutdog and her sister dragging a couch from upstairs down to the living room. The look on their face was pretty funny. I wasn’t supposed to be home that early. They basically rearranged all the furniture in the house. We’ve actually talked about doing it for years, but never committed to doing it. Glad they took the initiative, it looks much better.
  • The WHO changed their definition of herd immunity. They’ve removed any reference to achieving it through previous infections. Hmmm.
  • China is not our friend. We’re fools if we think we can go back to “normal” relations with them. I mentioned a while ago that they just planted their flag on the Moon with their second lunar lander. If our media wasn’t such garbage you might have actually heard about it. A few folks are sounding the alarm about their intentions. Our media will label them racist and nationalists.
  • Because of the aforementioned furniture rearranging, we’re going to buy our holiday gift to ourselves and get a new TV. I’m currently researching – my plan is to get something that requires a crane to install. Mrs Troutdog may have other plans. Stay tuned.

Song of the day: Dannic – Doster 

Don’t Make Me Tell You Again

  • Anyone else hear that as a kid growing up? I was never brave enough to find out what would happen if mom or dad had to say it again. Except one time in the car. I remember the “don’t make me pull this car over” as we were driving somewhere. I think my sister and I were horseplaying in the back seat. You know, the massive station wagon bench seat without seatbelts. Kids today have no idea. Anyway, whatever we were doing was the final straw and my dad stopped the car in the middle of the road. Tires screeching, horns honking, and drivers yelling at us. We were informed if we didn’t shape up right now, we were getting out right here and walking home. I believed him. This is what the mask mandate culture feels like. Nobody can really explain the science, just that masks are just supposed to magically work. Authorities are angerly stomping their feet and insisting we completely ignore common sense and just bend the knee. Meanwhile, back in the science and statistics department, this group did a data analysis of all fifty states and examined Covid case counts per day with and without mask mandates. During the days under mask mandates, states had 27 cases per 100k. Days without mask mandates? 17 cases per 100k. WTF? It’s almost like the mask mandates had no impact… or made things worse. How could this be? Again, there is a very good chance that a properly fitted mask, in the right circumstances, could lower viral load and thus reduce the severity of Covid if you catch it. This should be encouraged for people in high risk categories. That is NOT what we’re being told. Authorities are implying that masks will PREVENT Covid, which is utter nonsense. Think critically people.
  • This is a very well written article that looks at the idea of asymptomatic spread of Covid. Asymptomatic spread is the reason given for all the lockdowns. Well, that pesky science may be getting in the way and indicating that there isn’t asymptomatic spread. You’d think this would be great news. Maybe we should be looking into this further? We can end the lockdowns and try to rebuild our economy! Crickets. Science is supposed to be the ultimate contrarian intellectual activity. The very definition of science is that your peers should be trying to break your argument. It’s not until we’ve exhausted the attempts to disprove your hypothesis that something becomes accepted. We’ve moved into a frightening era in which to even question something today will get you labeled as a “denier”, in the same category as flat earthers.
  • I don’t know why anyone would be surprised, but reporters are getting frustrated that Biden and his team refuse to answer questions. He did not have a single open press conference during his “campaign”. Harris did not take a single question from the press. It’s starting to look like “A Weekend at Bernie’s”. Question is, who’s controlling things behind the scenes?
  • You know the world is upside down when Rachael Maddow is defending Tucker Carlson.
  • I’m a little cynical today, so bear with me. Let me get this straight. The (collective) government shuts down the economy. They killed hundred of thousands of small businesses. Politicians have twiddled their thumbs playing political games, all while happily collecting their paychecks. Finally they decide the optics are right and decided to print another trillion dollars we don’t have, to “help” those suffering the most from the problem they created in the first place. Congratulations! You get $600 dollars. See, we really care about you. Never mind that most of that trillion is going to programs other than direct payments to citizens. To give some perspective on how idiotic our federal spending priorities are, here’s a mind-blowing nugget from a nuclear power expert. “For $900 billion we could build enough AP1000 nuclear reactors to replace our entire power grid. Let that sink in. The average American would save thousands in electricity costs annually.” Why aren’t the green new deal people screaming about this? Where’s our new Climate Czar, Kerry?
  • Enough of the cynicism for the day, enjoy this guy talking to his dog. Yes, I totally talk to my dog this way.

Song of the day: VIOLENT FEMMES – Add it Up

Show Me Your Papers

  • I saw a doctor on CNN the other day saying that even though you’ve had Covid or received the vaccine you still need to wear a mask and social distance. Something about you could still be shedding virus even though you won’t get sick. It sounded odd at the time, but it wasn’t until this morning that it dawned on me. The authorities managed to back themselves into a corner with their mouth diaper mandates. We have no way to know if you’re already immune, so they have to continue the mask mandate for everyone. The problem is that as more and more people become immune, the backlash against wearing a mask will increase. So the next logical step is some sort of identifier showing that you are immune. Zeigen Sie mir ihre papiere. Show me your papers! Andrew Yang, potential NY mayor candidate, just proposed this. Airlines are already talking about it. It’s coming. This is right up the new administrations alley. A multi-billion dollar government program to roll out electronic Covid Id’s. Soon to be tied into your social credit score. Think that’s far fetched? Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube are already actively censoring speech. These companies already know everything there is to know about you, including your location at all times. Is it really that far of a stretch to think this information won’t be compiled into an individual ranking system? It is, after all, for your own good.
  • Speaking of mouth diapers, that’s one of the new changes when skiing. Yesterday was my first downhill day of the season. Everything went fine, I managed to not hurt myself which was my main goal. The new rules are that you have to wear a mask when in the lift lines. Fine. I understand the resort is simply trying to comply with rules so they don’t lose their lease from the forest service. I’ve never been able to wear a face covering when skiing. Too hot and restrictive. I dug out an old buff I had and used that. The problem was that it just didn’t work well with the helmet chinstrap. It bunched up and I couldn’t get it pulled up with my gloves on. Within an hour it was soaking wet and disgusting. The lift attendants would yell at you if you didn’t get it pulled up in time as you got close to the lift. The only negative mark on an otherwise great first day on the slopes.
  • Peter Navarro released a 36 page report detailing the overall election fraud allegations in the presidential election. It’s well worth reading. Even if the numbers don’t add up to enough to dispute the results, as independent thinkers, we should want to clean this mess up so there can’t be fraud claims in the next election. Both sides should want that. It shouldn’t be terribly difficult. Moving forward, all voting shall be in-person and require a photo ID. Allow extended early voting to fully accommodate people with scheduling issues. Absentee voting (not mail in ballots) for deployed members of the military and college students. That’s it. And don’t give me the whole requiring an ID to vote is discriminatory bullshit. You need an ID to function every single day as an adult in this country. Go to your polling place, show your ID, vote. Let’s not make it more complicated than that. Unless of course you have other motivations for pushing mail in voting, etc… ?
  • Lots of talk about pardoning Edward Snowden. I tend to be in the camp of nope on this one. He willingly signed all the NDA and classified document regulations when he was hired. You don’t get to violate those just because you don’t like the information they contain. He stole the data and leaked it – both against the law. He then fled to Russia to avoid prosecution. Sorry, I just don’t see him as a hero. If you agree with what he did, then anyone should be free to leak classified data.
  • Tiger Woods’ kid is just impressive. Most kids his age are still struggling to tie their shoelaces.

Song of the day: Bush “Chemicals Between Us” Guitar Center Sessions

Alex, I’ll Take Irony For $500 Please

  • Several things caught my eye yesterday that made me hum “isn’t it ironic…” The first was a Seattle councilwoman who voted to defund the police, wait for it, called 911 when someone threw a rock through her window. The other was Biden’s deputy chief of staff in a Glamour Magazine article talking about compassion, compromise, and unity and then says republican lawmakers are a bunch of fuckers and Mitch McConnell is terrible. Then it suddenly dawned on me… I’ve been down this road before. I’m not certain I actually know the definition of irony. I think I know it when I see it, but I really can’t tell you the definition. I already know I’m punctuation challenged, why does the rest of the English language have to be so hard as well? I find a certain level of irony in writing a blurb about ironic without actually knowing if it is or not. I suspect poor Alanis was unjustly criticized for her song.
  • Impressive puck handling skills with this hockey training treadmill.
  • Following along with Mayor Pete, Biden has nominated Deb Haaland for secretary of the interior. I’m sure she’s a lovely person, but has zero qualifications for the post. She has a degree in English and went to law school but didn’t take the bar exam. How could that not qualify her to manage our extensive public lands? At least Trumps guy had a degree in Geology, an MBA, and Masters of Science in global leadership. Oh, and he was a Navy SEAL officer. Doesn’t mean he did a good job, just that he at least had qualifications. The lead for most news articles explain clearly why she was picked: “Biden picks Rep. Haaland to be first Native American Interior secretary“. Symbolism over substance. As a blue check on twitter said, “Vaginas and skin color are more important than actually getting things done”.
  • Today will be my first downhill ski day of the season. For the first time ever, I’m actually nervous. I’m legitimately worried about hurting myself. I’ve never felt that before. I was skate skiing yesterday and my balance and coordination were terrible. Age is catching up with me. I think I’ll stick to the funny bunny and magic carpet runs today.
  • Speaking of age, I saw something yesterday that spawned a funny memory. One of my favorite cartoons as a kid was Speed Racer. Looking at it now I realize just how bad it was. How in the world did a Japanese cartoon, dubbed over with English get so popular?
  • I think one of the greatest sayings is (paraphrased) who you are as a person is defined by what you do when nobody’s looking. And there’s no better measure of that than what you do with returning a shopping cart. Someone took the time to write an entire article on this. Are you an always returner? A never returner? A convenience returner? Or perhaps a pressure returner – only when someone is watching? Hmmm. Does this translate to the rest of your life? Very deep grasshopper.

Song of the day: Alanis Morissette – You oughta know [Live Hyde Park 1996]