November 17th, 2017


I thought, "Hey, that's pretty cool," and then got to 1:07 in the video.

IT WON'T BURN YOU. Accidentally run it over your hand and you won't feel a thing.

The only real issue here is one of cost; the one kilowatt version we see in the video runs a cool $500,000. But the funny thing is, computers once cost a hell of a lot of money, too--and thirty years ago you couldn't buy a computer that does what my current desktop does for any price, let alone a week's wages at the median income.

Anyone who has ever had to remove rust from something prior to repairing or painting or what-have-you will immediately recognize how much better this method is. And $5 says that it works wonders for freeing up rusty nuts, too, as long as you can zap exposed threads.

You know, when the laser was invented, I don't think the people who did it realized what a technological shmoo it is. It seems as if there's nothing you can't do with a laser. Holy crap.

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And go to 1:10 here:

It cleans the writing and the grid lines off the paper, leaving the paper itself intact. DANG.

...imagine never having to scrape a gasket off again. Two seconds with the right kind of laser. WANT.

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This evening, we went to see Cirque du Soleil's new show Crystal, which was your typical Cirque show of amazing feats and impressive performances...this time, on ice. It was fantastic. I mean, fantastic. Any time I go to one of those shows I sit there dumbfounded with my mouth hanging open, but this show had it in spades. I mean, WOW.

And I can't help but think that Mom would have loved to see that show.

#5976: Is the paperwork done now?

Since Mrs. Fungus left for work, I've done two things: read the usual blogroll, and do the "onboarding" stuff for my new job.

The one annoying thing about all this is that I had to re-enter all my prior employment information. I'm not sure why they wanted that. But, WTF, it's a job, and what's more it's a technical job--something I was certain I'd never get again--so I'm not complaining.

I can't see them getting the background check and everything else done such that I could start before the 27th. Especially with the holiday being next week. I don't think it'll be December before I start work, but you never know. Starting Dec 4 would give me some time to get the house stuff dealt with, but really, I'm fine with however it shakes out.

Speaking of the house stuff, asbestos guys are scheduled for Tuesday. That gives me a scant three days to get the junk out of the living room, so there's a place to put the dining room junk while the floor is being asbestos-abated. Thrills! Chills! A never-ending, pulse-pounding adventure!

*sigh* It's actually plenty of time.

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Meanwhile, on Faceboob, I saw a blurb over in the right column about Dolly Parton's fans being "outraged" at what her net worth is.


Seriously, Dolly Parton has been a superstar since time immemorial. You don't have a career as a successful entertainer that spans decades, uninterrupted, and not end up being worth a shitton of money--unless you throw it around like you're the government.

You can tell the smart ones, because they don't end up spiraling down the "high life" drain, ending up broke and washed-up; and they frequently end up being worth hundreds of millions if not billions. Robin Williams--more than a decade ago I was surprised to learn his net worth was over $100 million. Until I thought about it, that is, and realized it made sense.

So, why be "outraged" that Dolly Parton is rich? Why wouldn't she be? I mean, people buy her records and go to her concerts and visit her theme park, and I'm certain there are other investments she has that make her money--and if you like her work, why be angry that it's made her rich?

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Last night I tried watching Hinterland, which is another British murder drama series, this time about a Londoner who's a Detective Inspector in Wales. Predictably the name of the town is a consonantal gargle: Aberystwyth. (I think they pronounce it A-berst-with.)

The tone of the series is a bit on the bleak side, but it's good--at least, after two eps. The first ep, dang was there a plot twist at the end of it.

Not sure Netflix shows it in Welsh--probably just the English version--but watching it in Welsh with English subtitles would probably be pretty f-in' cool.

...but because of that, I didn't get to bed until after 4 AM. I certainly won't be doing that kind of thing much longer.

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Cold and gloomy day today. Well, it's November; that's to be expected.

#5977: Life under communism

Someone who lived in communist Poland talks about what it was like.

Of course, the left's response to this is to say, "Well, that wasn't real communism." That shit fails every time it's tried, and the left's response is to denounce it as not being actual Marxism because it failed. Notice that while the commissars are stomping on human faces, none of these cheerleaders stands up and says, "Whoa, whoa! This isn't actual communism, comrades! We need to implement real communism if this regime is to have any hope!" Hell no. They just stand on the sidelines and cheer on the commissars while they get their face-stompin' boots all covered in blood.

If you celebrate Lenin and Stalin and Guevara, you're not going to say a contrary word to any communist regime, no matter how bloody it is, until and unless it fails; then you'll say "that wasn't communism!" and go right on trying to make it happen wherever possible.

Soviet Union--60,000,000 people dead, not real communism.

China--73,000,000 people dead, not real communism.

North Korea--3,000,000 people dead, not real communism.

Cambodia (Khmer Rouge)--3,000,000 people dead, not real communism. Whoa nellie, definitely not!

And keep reading the list.

...every time it is tried it leads to mountains of human skulls. And on the way there, it impoverishes everyone in its path who does not bow to it, forcing them to live in conditions of grinding poverty.

The idiots in America who want to live under communism simply don't understand what it's like. They think communism would be like what we have now, only they don't have to pay for anything like food and housing and so on. They have this inchoate idea about "fairness" and "equality"--something which never actually happens under any system, but especially not under communism!--but never think through what must actually be done to make it happen.

Like that friend of mine two decades ago, waxing rhapsodic about how his Chinese girlfriend didn't have to worry about having food or shelter or medical care. (This guy was a devout Christian. Wish I would have thought to add that she also didn't have to go to church on Sunday.)

But what actually happens is closer to what's described at that link. Everything is rationed. Government controls everything, and if you're not in the Party, you're fodder for the machine. You're not going to be bopping around with an iPhone X sipping your macho-milko from Starbucks; your phone will be a basic "calls and maybe text message" device that you'll wait three years to get. And your cup of coffee will be basic coffee you brew yourself, a bit thin since rationing forces you to use the grounds three times.

And it's all done at gunpoint, because it has to be, because communism is so contrary to human nature.

It cannot be otherwise.

But of course the idiots will continue to insist that "real communism has never been tried". Listing all the inevitable failures of communism falls on willingly deaf ears.

* * *

"There's no inflation!" ...which is why butter now costs $5 a pound.

Since 1996, the consumer price index has increased fifty-five percent, meaning a dollar is worth half of what it was worth twenty years ago.

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"Air Force would have drawn boobs." Heh. Heh.

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Well, pounding rain, thunder and lightning. 100% chance of rain tomorrow. WTF, am I going to be cutting the grass on Thanksgiving?