June 7th, 2021

#7673: It's a wonderland of NO IT IS NOT A WONDERLAND SHUT UP

Got to work this morning to a pile of emails. "Servers are down and we can't contact them! Can anyone check the servers! Please! Oh! The servers are back up, never mind!" More or less.

I figured things were fine and went about my business, until there was a knock on my door about 50 minutes after my arrival. Everyone served by a certain switch had no phones or Internet.

Me: Sweet.

It developed that every last single device served by that switch which required Power Over Ethernet (POE) was down. That includes:
* Desk phones
* Wireless Access points
* Security cameras
* Gate actuators
If you disconnected the phone and plugged the computer directly into the wall, you would get Internet back. But part of the area served by that switch is the control room and they really, really need to have phones.

To make things even more entertaining, every last port of that 48-port switch was in use. Or, at least, had something plugged into it.

We had a 24-port switch available, which had last been used in 2019. I was able to get someone from the LAN team to set it up for me so I could plug it into the existing switch and move the devices which needed POE over to it. That got us some phones and most cameras back, but it's still not done. I booked it out of there at 3:50 by my watch and made it home just as the Lutheran church bell was striking 4 PM. 10 minutes without excessive speeding--not bad. I'd still be at work if I hadn't had to come home to wait for the ORKIN MAN who is going to do something about all the f-ing ants.

I hope.

Anyway, I'm going to spend more time on it tomorrow, obviously, but at least I--with the able help of the infrastructure and network guys--was able to get some kind of solution in place which will tide us over until our maintenance provider can get us a new switch.


* * *

China's state media says that Chinese should prepare for a nuclear war because the Biden regime made noises about investigating the origins of the Wuhan Flu.

It's nothing but saber-rattling.

The idea is to scare American leftists into shutting up their puppet: China's going to nuke us! What in fact is going on is that--as China is aware--American military doctrine for an attack with biological or chemical weapons is to treat them like an attack with nuclear ones. If someone attacks you with a biological agent, you hit them with nuclear weapons.

The idea here is deterrence: chemical=biological=nuclear means anything which causes mass civilian casualties is entirely off the table, and we don't have to retaliate in kind to retaliate in detail. "You can't use nukes on me because I only gassed Seattle!" won't fly. Your attack killed half a million people--enjoy our counterattack.

Except, I don't know anyone who's that fucking insane. Not on either side of the aisle in American politics.

The democrats love the communists and would never think of attacking them for committing an act of war against America, even if it was an outright deliberate act and not an accident...or a deliberate act which was lampshaded as an accident. (As far as it goes, I suspect that the release of the Wuhan Flu was truly accidental. But I'm prepared to be proven wrong. Please note that all along I have suspected it was an engineered virus and not wholly natural.)

The republicans, on the other hand, are generally reluctant to fight a war against an opponent of the same level as the United States. They're all over sending the troops into Iraq or Afghanistan, but they'd never condone a nuclear strike on Beijing, because we might lose the resulting conflict.

I don't think either party really cares all that much about the effect that a nuclear war would have on the general population of the United States. But they do care about their own skins; and in a nuclear exchange, capital cities are high-value targets, and the only sure defense against a nuclear warhead is not to be there when it goes off. That's why so many nuclear delivery systems are designed around minimizing "time of flight" and maximizing accuracy. And why there are so many spies trying to find out where the politicians go when the air raid sirens start to blow. It doesn't matter how much concrete you're hiding under when they can pinpoint your location and drop a 10 megaton hydrogen bomb down your ventilation shaft. And if you have twenty minutes' warning of an attack--say, a depressed-trajectory shot from a nuclear missile submarine some fifty miles off the coast--you're not going to be able to run very far before you must be in your bomb shelter.

The thing to remember is, China is a paper tiger.

Look at the population density map in that post. The places that are not red or orange are high up--the Gobi Desert, for example--and mountains are not places you can grow food. On the order of half their landmass is simply not arable, for one reason or another.

How much food does China import? From where does it import that food? What basic materials does China lack, without which its economy stops?

There's a reason China is burning so much coal that they now produce more carbon dioxide than the rest of the industrialized world combined: they have lots of it. They need energy to maintain their economy and coal is cheap and plentiful. Coal is also useful stuff for making steel.

...but there are environmental costs of heavy industry. If you have a lithium mine, how much area around it cannot be used for farming? What about a solar panel factory? China has no controls on what industries may do to dispose of their toxic wastes. You try growing rice downstream of an IC fab that's dumping its waste in the local waterways, and tell me how well you do. And tell me how many forms of cancer the people who eat your rice get.

Cancer, birth defects, a myriad of illnesses--

The reason China needed Trump gone stems entirely from the economic policies of the Trump administration. His was the first in a very long time to hold the Chinese to a standard which was at least similar to the ones by which we expect our other trading partners to abide. Rather than let the Chinese steal whatever intellectual property they could and then dump cheap products on our market, he was forcing China into some modicum of fairness.

But China's current economic paradigm cannot survive that. Their economy is based on rapid expansion and increasing market share. Survival for the communist regime requires that China corner the market on something.

The problem is, where does common sense end and ideology begin? The idea of the communist regime surviving due to capitalism has to rankle them on some level. They must want to defeat the United States; but if they defeat the US, they end up ruining their own economic prospects, and quite possibly starve to death in the bargain. America is the economic engine that drives the world economy, and further it's a huge exporter of food.

They can't have it both ways. Their best hope is to take Taiwan via politics; if Taiwan fell to the communists it would represent an enormous injection of wealth into the Chinese economy. All those state-of-the-art chip fabs, high-technology factories, cutting-edge engineering and development labs...and all those highly-educated scientists and engineers who would suddenly become vassals of the communist Chinese state.

...but for those reasons, I don't see the free world taking that sitting down. That's why John Cena had to apologize for calling Taiwan a "country"; China knows that the world considers Taiwan a wholly separate entity and China desperately wants to absorb all that wealth and know-how, in order to keep the communist junta running a little while longer.

Governments--especially communist ones--consume wealth. They cannot create it. Totalitarian communist regimes use up wealth a lot faster than do democracies or republics do. After the Cultural Revolution, China could not even feed itself; thanks to Nixon's efforts the communist Chinese government was given a lifeline. Absent that, the communists would probably have been overthrown by now and we'd be dealing with a truly democratic China.

Still, perhaps the communists are correct. They have a spy network and they have analysts whose job it is to figure out what the US might do, and they're just as capable of reading the tea leaves as anyone.

Sarah Hoyt says something that dovetails with something my mother always said. Democrats, she said, ruin the economy, then get us into a war. Every time. Because of the nature of war in the Atomic Age, they had to be more circumspect about the "war" business, but since the republicans had taken up some of the "ruin the economy" mantle--starting with Nixon--I suppose it was all fair game.

Ms. Hoyt says:
Now we have [the Gangster Party's] range, and as the full bilge behind the lockdowns and masking, as the fact that they denied the effectiveness of Hydroxychloroquin and Ivermeticin, medicines that COULD have saved thousands of people who actually did die of Winnie the Flu, comes out, they're going to try to lie their way out of this.

Which means the next one is going to be a doozy. And when that fails, they're going to get us in a war.

I said when China Joe cheated his way in that this meant we were going to war with China. This seems counterintuitive, but other than GWB (and that was forced by things like 9/11) most of our big wars have been the work of a democrat president who needed to save his butt.

Well, they have a big butt and a big need to save it. And at some point, they will need to distance from China, particularly because China is going to have massive problems of their own, which they fail to understand because they don't get trade or business. (I.e. they don't get the poorer the US becomes, the less we buy from them. Which is already happening. And they need us to buy from them to stay afloat.) At some point in the China ImplosionTM they are going to give up on puppet states and just try to keep control at home. They're already almost there.

At which point their money (which is mostly smell and bullshit, anyway) stops flowing, and our politicians are left holding the bag, or in the colorful saying of my birth region "F*cked and ill paid." And in desperate need of the biggest distraction possible. Which is going to be war. Against China is a guess. Partly because in their mind China is as big and competent as us (snort giggle) ensuring a good long, and dangerous war.
And besides, there is nothing so angry as a whore who feels "F*cked and ill paid."

* * *

From here:

Guess the former CEO of Disney is very optimistic about the future, huh?

* * *

How interesting. The people who are excoriating Joe Manchin for refusing to vote to end the filibuster in the senate are providing a prime example for why the filibuster is necessary.

The Gangster Party really wants to federalize all elections, in order to make it pathetically easy for them to rig elections to get the votes they want. A bare handful of people stand in their way.

* * *

File these under "law of unintended consequences". Why giving away free money is always a bad idea.

* * *

In our "This Amazing 21st Century" we have the invention of the flying fuck. Yes, you too can now give a flying fuck, even if you never wanted to.

* * *

Well, it's now 6:52 PM and Orkin never appeared for their "four to six PM" window. I'm telling Mrs. Fungus that we should give Terminix a try; perhaps they actually want our business enough to, y'know, show up, rather than blow us off twice in a row.

They were supposed to come on the Saturday before Memorial Day, but I got a message saying they couldn't make it; and when Mrs. Fungus called to reschedule, the scheduling bint told her that it had been a "phone consultation" that had been scheduled, rather than an in-person visit, as the message I had gotten had attested.

This time, however, not even a, "Sorry, I'm running late!" or "Sorry, I can't make it!" From a customer service standpoint, that's completely unacceptable and makes obvious the fact that they do not want our business.

* * *

Humid today, and rainy.

Looks to be rainy and humid for the rest of the week, too.

Well, summer; what do you expect?