atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#6843: Too hot to work outside

And Mrs. Fungus is at work so I'm not going swimming, either. No, today I am in the spare room armed with a can of spackle and a putty knife, and I am doing paint prep until all cracks, gouges, dings, holes, and divots are filled. All four walls and the ceiling, as much as I can do. Or until I run out of spackle; whichever comes first.

(Had to have food. Made some quesodillas with last night's leftover taco meat.)

I need to move the blab slab to the basement, too, but I don't think I can do that safely without help. It's not very heavy but it's bulky and fragile (at least, one face of it is) and I'd feel better about moving it with another pair of hands on the other side of it.

...try not to think about the fact that if this were twenty years from now, I could just roll the thing up and take it downstairs, tucked under one arm. *sigh* But then again, in that case, it wouldn't be mounted to the wall, anyway.

Anyway, during this all too brief lunch break, bloggeration.

* * *

So, let's start with Bill "Ned Ludd" de Blasio and his proposed anti-robot scheme.

Borepatch begins with talking about King Canute commanding the tides not to rise, as a demonstration of the limit of the power of men, and then compares that to de Blasio's nonsense (and in fact he refers to the very next post I am going to link to in the process).

The issue here is that like several other blue states, New York has a $15 minimum wage. Insisting that corporations pay their least-skilled workers $30,000 a year and insisting that they not automate is certain to force many (if not all) out of business entirely. At the core of this is the philosophy that leftists seem to have, that corporations exist to employ people. Or, at least, that they should.

Leftists do not merely distrust the profit motive; they hate it. The word "capitalist" was coined by Karl Marx as an epithet, a curse, a derisive name for people who took risks and built businesses and got rich while employing people. The progressive movement started in the latter third of the 19th century, and by about 1920 had become the socialist movement. In that time frame, laws were enacted to limit how many hours a person could be made to work each week, and a host of other reforms had also ensured that "sweat shops" were a thing of the past in America. These days, the "capitalists" are people who own small and medium-sized businesses and they employ a great many people in the country.

Would leftists look down on Steve Jobs? He was a capitalist. They do look down on Bill Gates, who is also a capitalist: men who built whole industries from very humble beginnings and whose personal wealth became immense in the process.

The profit motive, though, is why we have things like personal computers and automobiles and cell phones. There's nothing dirty about wanting to earn money, at least not as long as it is earned and not stolen. Someone like Bill Gates--I would never begrudge him his fortune, because he worked for it. (People like to point at how he bought 86-DOS from Seattle Computer Products for a song, implying that he scammed them--but SCP willingly made the sale. If they'd thought they had a winner on their hands they would not have sold it so cheaply. It's not up to the buyer to explain why he wants a product. SCP could have marketed 86-DOS to IBM which case history might have been different.)

The scheme ignores what technology does for us, though. Having read that link there is not one bit I can blockquote; the whole post is the point. All I can do is try to digest it, and the best way I can do that is to concentrate on one item: engineering drawings.

Looking through a Sears catalog from 1994, I came across drafting tables. When I was in junior high I took a drafting class, and the stuff you had to go through to get the paper aligned and square and set up for drawing, the tools you had to use--the pencil had to be kept needle-sharp, because otherwise your lines got sloppy. Erasing was a big deal and you couldn't leave smudges because if your drawing were to be turned into a blueprint (which is a photographic process) smudges would transfer over as well as your lines did. It took half an hour just to get the paper squared up.

Who uses drafting tables now? And why would they? It's far easier just to load up any of a dozen CAD programs and bang out a drawing that way. You can (as Heinlein predicted in The Door Into Summer) sit back in an easy chair and design things, instead of having to lean over a table with a pencil. Instead of having a paper archive of rolled-up blueprints, you have a file server with all the drawings on it. Each engineer has a CAD station (which costs, in equivalent dollars, about as much as a pro-level drafting table did back then) which is linked into the network and which can look at whatever drawings are on the server. No one has to go fetch the paper copy. No one has to curate a huge stack of literal scrolls. Whenever anyone wants a paper copy, two or three mouse clicks send it to a printer that's a short walk from his desk.

Technology makes everyone's lives easier. Watching End of Summer last week, I was amused by seeing the characters using pay phones, because cell phones are now so commonplace that the pay phone is all but extinct. But you can't have inexpensive cell phones without robots in the factories that make cell phones.

As that last link attests, de Blasio may as well command the tides not to rise. Given a choice between automation and bankruptcy, businesses will choose the former, because they exist to earn a profit. But what de Blasio is trying to do, here, is to make that impossible. And as the article attests, it will drive businesses out of America and to other countries where the environment is more favorable.

And then there will be no jobs for anyone.

* * *

In covering that shooting in Florida, the one that gave us Little Hitler, the media has carefully avoided talking about the shooter himself.
Cruz's torture and killing of animals became a source of pride for him as he interacted with other students. One student, Devin, recalled that, although he tried to avoid Cruz, Cruz would approach him almost every day and ask, "Would you like to see videos of me skinning animals?" Devin always declined, but Cruz kept asking.
The text that Vox Day blockquotes paints an interesting picture of the guy's approximate sanity.

Speaking of Little Hitler, he just cannot avoid opening his mouth and removing all doubt, can he?

* * *

The simple answer is yes, you are the asshole. Guy lets his son wear a dress to school, with the predictable result that the son was bullied by his classmates, so badly that the school asked him to come get his son after three hours because of the disruption. He's gobsmacked and can't understand why his wife is furious at him.
How should he feel? Deeply ashamed, not only for believing the claptrap about transgenderism, but for subjecting a seven year old child to ridicule and humiliation.

I imagine that he will not. If he could not figure it out without sharing it with the public, he is in very big trouble.
Well, that's a lovely story, now, isn't it?

* * *

As I have said time and time again, "violence is the only language they understand." That's the way to sum that post up; it goes into detail why "jaw, jaw" will not clean up the mess that is Afghanistan. We are trying to drag people out of the seventh century but they are quite happy and comfortable there; it's best just to let them stay there and not bother trying to civilize them, at least if we're not willing to do what is necessary to convince them to listen to us.

I know I am not.

Look: the prescription here is to show them what they are messing with, in detail, by bombing everything until the rubble bounces and "not one stone stands upon another". Take no prisoners, but kill everyone who attacks you, regardless of age, sex, or method. A kid throws a rock at you? Put a bullet through his head. The message would then be plain, in language they can understand: Do not fool around with us. We will not tolerate it and you will die.

If people from a town attack you, level the town in its entirety, without warning and without mercy. Yes, you are going to kill noncombatants. Most of the town will be utterly uninvolved in the attack, but you must make the message plain: If you harbor our enemies, you will be destroyed.

But in the process of following that plan, you turn some of our troops into monsters. Vietnam was run to this specification; they'd set fire to villages and shoot people who came running out, eradicating places that harbored guerillas. It worked--yes, it worked, all right, and if the Democrats had not denied military aid to the Vietnamese in the mid-1970s, the Fall of Saigon wouldn't have happened.

Vietnam was the last war that was prosecuted as a war and not some kind of video game. It was horrible, because that's what war is.

...which is why I say I am not willing to ask our military to do what is necessary to pacify Afghanistan. The butcher's bill is enormous, but the cost in sanity to our military people is also too dear a price--and what do we get for it? There is nothing in Afghanistan that we need. The Soviet Union failed to engulf it; I doubt China would have any better luck than either they or we have.

I am convinced that Iran could be made to see reason, and further I think sinking their entire navy would be a good way to start on that path. For proof I point at the example given by the bombing of Tripoli in 1986. Libya had been identified as a hotbed of terrorism; once that had been proven, Ronald Reagan ordered that Tripoli be bombed. Moammar Qaddafi learned his lesson from that, so well that when the "WMDs in Iraq!" thing was being bandied about he got up and said, "Hey, just so you know, there are NO WMDs in Libya! None! Not even one! Honest!"

Because we'd spoken to him in the language he understood.

* * *

We definitely should harp on this point a lot more than we do. "It's a damn shame that homeless winos and Hollywood bimbos of both sexes and all 37+ genders don’t get to set the agenda for the entire nation. That's not Democracy!!!" Get rid of the Electoral Collage and "...put Barbara Streisand and Leonardo DiCaprio and three shit-stained homeless heroin addicts in charge of our nuclear arsenal [and] health care."

* * *

I hadn't noticed this, and I look for this shit everywhere. For the next ten days, the dates are all palindromes. Like today is 9/10/19, 91019. The same, forwards or backwards.

In June--I didn't notice this one either--the dates were rotationally symmetric. 6/10/19, 61019, is the same read upside down, 61019 or 6/10/19.

* * *

And now, back to work.

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