Archive for the ‘Repeatedly Beating Dead Horse’ Category

The power of propaganda

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2020

So, tells what I suspect is a pretty accurate story about Trump’s character. We know that almost all of his business ventures have ended up bankrupt – which I think is what he’s trying to do to the country itself, so his conservative buddies can steal all of our social security money.

However, conservative news sources sell the idea that Trump is a good businessman, and conservatives buy the lie. There’s no convincing them that it is a lie – and here’s the part I find really puzzling. Over and over it Trump gets *caught* in his lies – like his firing of the pandemic team, his insistence that the pandemic would blow over, etc – and yet I can safely bet that my conservative friends have either already forgotten this fact or will conveniently forget it when it comes time to vote.


Dear Republican Party

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2020

One thing you don’t seem to have thought of as you continue your social destruction fest is that things generally do not travel *up* slippery slopes. Every time Mitch gallops down another level of dishonorability it brings politics in our country down another level – and it’s not likely to go back up. Which means among other things that once Democrats are in power they’re likely to play every bit as dirty as Mitch has.


You all have proven to us lefties – as if we had any real doubt – that you have no honor at all. And you’ve made the world a much worse place. I hope you feel at least a little bit of shame. You’re lucky that there *isn’t* a higher power in control of all this, because if there was any sort of karma implemented at all you all would get to experience the suffering – which is vast – that you have visited on others. With everything from wars over false pretenses to prep up the petrodollar to rigging the supreme court to tax breaks for the rich to exporting total bullshit conspiracy theories to get people who are repeatedly hurt by your policies to vote for them, you are the worst.


Dear Democratic Party

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2020

So, I’ve repeatedly offered my (*very* experienced, valued at $100+/hr) time to help the democrats suck less at IT. In particular they need to find a way to work together to keep track of which numbers in their database are expired and cull them, they need to communicate the cull lists and with the various democratic groups, and they need to also stop calling so often for money that when they call to GOTV people automatically assume it’s another beg-a-thon call. All of this hurts their ultimate goal of getting people elected and also burns volunteer hours.


They also really should stop with the fake surveys which go directly to /dev/null in order to beg for more money. (To be fair, this isn’t a partisan thing, the republicans do the same thing)


They have repeatedly ignored me. I’m assuming there’s nepotism in the democrat IT department involved, although it’s possible that they just are so internally chaotic that the message does not get through.


One thing I’ve noticed about the Democrats is they have a real problem with triage. I agree that nearly all the things that people bring up as important to fix are important, but there’s certainly one thing that’s *most* important. In general left leaning groups seem to fall for identity politics and everyone seems to think that the item hurting *them* is the most important, not *the item hurting the most people*. This leads to everyone wanting to throw energy into their special hobby-horse while really large problems like ICE, the republican cheatiness surrounding gerrymandering, the republican cheatiness surrounding fair play in general (i.e. Mitch), and whatnot go unfixed.


I did recently buy a interesting book on possible ways to unfuck America’s deeply fucked political system. (Actually, strictly speaking, it’s not fucked – it does exactly what the 1% want it to do. It just kind of shafts the rest of us)


Anyway, the IT brokenness underlines how little they care about volunteer hours – I volunteered to do phone banking for GOTV in 2018 but 90% of the calls were wrong numbers, people with so much call fatigue that they hung up almost immediately, or people who were not eligible to vote. This made me feel extremely non-valued as a volunteer. I’ve repeatedly emailed my contact offering to help fix the situation but they have completely ignored me thus far. I suspect you have to earn your place in the organization not by having good ideas and good skills but by putting in a certain number of hours at pointless tasks.


Thursday, September 3rd, 2020

So, I’ve been having a lot of trouble with anger lately – partially over Trump and his destruction of the post office, which has always been one of my favorite American institutions, and partially over the number of people who totally half-ass things I seem to run into lately.

For example, I recently ordered a replacement 200 amp breaker on Amazon for the one that has a stripped lug, and I got sent a 125 amp breaker. I asked for a prepaid return label, and the shipper wants to refund my money *after* they see the breaker. I sent them a photo of it, we’ll see if that helps any..

I’m also angry over conservatives in general and how they value money over life – watching this COVID situation has really underlined for me how conservatives think that people should die so their bank accounts can get fatter. (Of course, Trump retweeting that the only good democrat is a dead democrat also underlined for me that if Trump could get away with it, he’d shoot me and take all my money, and apparently his followers embrace this idea as well)

It does kind of make me wonder if where we’re heading is Trump announcing “Go kill all the democrats. If you are a rural american, take your gun into the cities and shoot everyone you can, especially people who aren’t white.”

I’m sure it would earn him a lot of points with some voters. Of course, the police already do this to a certain extent – and Trump did tell them to please be more violent when busting people.

Anyway, it’s difficult not to be angry about the current policial system – as far as I can tell, evil has triumphed. I can’t fathom the Christians who think Trump is the second coming – I mean, how many lies do we think Jesus told? They do say the devil is the father of lies, which suggests to me if Trump has any spiritual connections in the Christian framework, it’s with the devil.


Sunday, August 16th, 2020

So, I think I’ve talked about this before, but I thought I’d mention it again.

We have 10^11 neurons. 100 billion of them – and each neuron is made up of many, many atoms. A conservative guess might be a hundred thousand. Each atom has a electron that forms a probability cloud that is the most dense close to the nucleus, and asymptotically approaches zero as it moves away from the nucleus, but it’s never really zero.

We are all connected, we are all inside each other. We can’t escape this.

At the same time, our experiences of each other can never really be the territory, but must be the map. We experience avatars of other people, because our experience of the other people is happening inside our heads even though the other people are in fact real beings that are out there in whatever world or worlds we inhabit.

This is all before we even start to open the can of worms marked ‘multiple worlds theory’ or ‘multiple dimensions’.

Money sucks, part 2

Sunday, August 2nd, 2020

Ok, so leaving aside how often capitalism makes us optimize against the best interests of either the race or individuals, I wanted to talk about a way that money sucks that as far as I can tell applies to almost every single large scale resource allocation system ever built.

Even in “Comminist” and “socialist” countries, they end up using money. And the problem with this is that not all actual real goods are created equal, but every transaction involving money throws away all metadata. So you can trade your paper rubles or dollars or francs or what have you for your resources, and we have completely lost track of what went into those resources. People keep talking about how the “invisible hand of the market” will solve everything, but as far as I can tell, the invisible hand of the market is A: myopic B: slow C: wasteful and D: not really how we should be wanting to do things.

Lately COVID has given us some excessive examples of this. Ideally we would have just stopped pumping as much oil when we realized we weren’t burning as much, but because this didn’t happen, for a while barrels of oil literally had a *negative* value.

Now I get that you could not, pre computers and networks, track every single type of fixed good and inventory on hand. However, things have changed, and I really think someone should be sitting down and working on designing a resource allocation system that is properly tuned to what we can now do.