Days of Change

iPocalypse

September 1, 2014
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This weekend has seen the release of hundreds of private and not safe for work photos of various female celebrities on a number of websites. The best guess for the source is a hacker of some kind who got access to photos stored on Apple’s iCloud. While their service is secure and encrypted, an e-mail account and some password cracking is all that’s needed to access photos in high-demand to man’s more prurient interests.

I’ll forego my tirade about Apple’s ubiquity being the reason for this. I’ll point out that smartphones are about the least secure thing in the world and even “temporary” storage is not safe. My point tonight is that those people who wanted to dredge up the life of Sarah Palin accepted the same methods from another “hacker” who now flexes his digits in prison. He used the password reset function of Sarah Palin’s Yahoo account to read her e-mails which were by and large uneventful. These photos were not.


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Is Romney Running for the Nomination Again?

August 31, 2014
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What I took away from 2012 is that I am more or less correct that Mitt Romney is not the kind of Republican that disgruntled voters picked in 2010. I also learned that I can put aside that reservation and support him as the Republican nominee. This is important. Liberals who supported Nader in 2000 may have tipped the balance toward Bush, especially after the suspicious voting, media manipulation and October surprise of a drunk driving ticket. I won’t eat everything the GOP puts on my plate, but I’ll pick a garden salad over lukewarm potato salad.

My objections to Romney are rooted firmly in his inability to win. My analysis is that his personal advisers along with the moronic jackals who’ve run most Republicans since the late 70’s are going to keep him on a message that is guaranteed to dishearten his base. Republicans can win with fired up Republicans and an increasing number of Independents. Trying to win Democrats is high risk for little benefit.

Now that Breitbart.com has been writing about Romney sounding tough on things again, I am concerned that advisers are again telling him to say things the right-wing nuts in flyover country will like to secure the nomination. This strategy was not that effective in 2012. Most of his support came from the lack of any other long-term front-runner. It got worse in the fall when he ran away from conservative principles and alienated possible voters.

I would support Mitt Romney in just about any cabinet position, even as Vice President. Let’s not kid ourselves, however. Romney is no Ronald Reagan. The third time won’t be the charm.


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The Technological Leap

August 30, 2014
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I just read another post where someone complained about their Smart /i Phone not relaying their intended text. There are websites devoted to the phenomenon of a phone’s interpretation of what you type. While the Supreme Court has ruled that a phone is a computer, it’s still not there for everyone.

The “kids” today have been exposed to phones and tablets much earlier and use them for the apps and mobile friendly content available. They don’t do the same things on them. I’ve only been using a laptop for the last few years and it sits on my desk with 7 cables coming out of it. If I were really an integrated laptop user, it would be more like 2.

Microsoft offers a Surface tablet with a USB port and a Display Port connector. You could use it as a tablet with or without a keyboard. You could also set it on your desk, plug power and a monitor into it and use a USB hub for a mouse and keyboard. You’ve basically re-created a computer. It’s what I do with my laptop at home and my Windows tablet at work. I haven’t made the transition.

I do have an idea of what a “computer” may be like in the future. Homes will have a box where data will come in and be stored. It will be accessed by something between a big phone and a small tablet, kind of like the pads from the 1990’s versions of Star Trek. Typing may be replaced by voice.

Whatever happens, older people will create it and younger people will access its potential. I’m comfortable using my smart phone as a smart toy because I know my limits.


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Always Assume Petty Motives

August 29, 2014
1 Comment

My current guess as to why Obama and his minions call ISIS “ISIL” is because it complicates sound bites. The administration is forced to answer questions about ISIS, but by calling it ISIL the media has to put in the obligatory sentences about how ISIL is ISIS and the translation has to do with different Middle East territories and the average Obama voter’s eyes have glazed over and they forgot what they were reading.

In other words, Obama is doing it because he’s a dick.


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That Last 10 Pounds of Outrage

August 28, 2014
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The grievance industry is one of the forces in society that promises to make things better by making people miserable. I have seen a few stories of note in the last few weeks. There’s feminist outrage over a sight gad at the Emmys. There are the constant stories about global warming and how stupid the “deniers” are. Then there is the sad case in Ferguson, where the shooting of a teenager by police is assumed to be a case of a cop gone too far despite growing evidence to the contrary.

Feminism, environmentalists and those seeking racial equality are the victims of their own success. Their achievements over decades has been extraordinary. People are aware of the goals and the mistakes of the past. The job is mostly done. For some, however, the last remnants of  what are seen as problems are like losing those last 10 stubborn pounds. They have been reduced to vanity topics that have little to know real impact, and try to give them weight by complaining more.

At one time, the “environmental movement” was an anti-pollution crusade. Highly toxic chemical by-products were released into the air, water and land. It took years and billions of dollars to clean them up and years of government regulation from stopping it from happening again. We have a clean country. The holdouts are now trying to convince us that a gas that is clear and non-toxic is creating a complex chain reaction that will eventually make the planet unlivable using mostly computer modeling and little direct observation.

Civil rights was about ending laws that discriminated against Blacks and other races as well as taking power away from racist local governments. When many of those barriers were lifted, the government even created affirmative action to bolster the numbers of minorities in hiring and employment. Cases of criminal racism are limited to individuals either breaking the law or trying to skirt it.

Feminism sought equal rights of opportunity for women. Government eventually gave them the right to vote, allowed medical processes like birth-control and abortion to become legal and also employed affirmative action and pay equity laws. Many new cases of being anti-woman are due to either criminal individuals or the perception of women not having equal opportunities even if women don’t have interest in equal numbers to men.

In recent years, the bad actions of a small number of people and organizations have been extrapolated to being part of society as a whole. If there is one polluter, one rapist or one racist cop, it is a matter for law enforcement. If it is deemed the fault of society or a micro-aggression, the grievance industry demands government act to change society. At one time, these groups won hearts and minds. Now they want the government to control those hearts and minds instead.


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Not a Good Sign

August 27, 2014
1 Comment

Time Warner’s entire internet, along with cable and phone, went out this morning. That Comcast merger is looking more sketchy every day.


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The Act Like a Human Being Challenge

August 26, 2014
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In the last few weeks, everyone from national celebrities to executives in my own company have taken part in the “Ice Bucket Challenge.” The name is something of a misnomer, since there are no ice cubes involved, just a bucket of cold water. This has become a viral internet phenomenon because people love to watch people being doused with water. The side benefit is that the challenge is often to get doused with water, donate money to ALS, or both.

Sarah Palin did both in a YouTube video. She decided to emulate a video that Patrick Stewart did where he wrote a check and used the bucket of ice to fix a drink. Palin fixed herself a glass of Diet Dr. Pepper and then a bucket of water was dumped on her anyway.

The reaction was predictable. The Sarah Palin grievance industry complained about self-promotion, bad acting, product placement and even the way she screamed when hit with ice-cold water. The left vacillates between picking on her and complaining about why she’s so pervasive. One columnist tried to just ignore her and challenged others to do the same. My challenge would be for everyone to act like a human being. If Palin does something for a good cause and you still don’t like her, just shut up and move along.


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Bitching About Obama

August 25, 2014
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I think we’ve all reasonably reached the point where we can say Barack Obama is responsible for most of the world’s problems. The solution is not to impeach or to somehow convince the idiots who voted for him to demand his ouster. The only scenario now is to get the Republicans a majority in the Senate so they will decide they are the big boys again and stop some of Obama’s crap.

This is not an ideal solution. John Boehner has decided to let the Supreme Court fight his battles rather than risk another so-called shutdown with a budget battle. Conservatives have filled the void with non-stop bitching about how bad Obama is. What do you plan on doing about it? There’s an election in about 9 weeks and n one seems to notice.

Boehner and McConnell are not the best leadership in history, but they don’t like Obama’s imperial presidency. I trust them to shut down Obama, even if it’s only out of spite. This is really the last chance to do something before we really see what a reckless lame duck presidency is like.


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Who Knew?

August 24, 2014
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The more things stay the same, the more they change.

The BBC series Doctor Who is nearly 51 years old. That spans two or three generations of TV watchers. Those of us in the United States mostly started watching in the late 70’s to early 80’s when PBS picked up episodes in syndication. I’m a first wave Doctor Who watcher, having seen the various incarnations of the character up to the early 90’s when reruns dried up on Public Television. I even watched the incredibly low-rated movie on Fox which was the only appearance of the Eighth Doctor.

Fans were excited about the appearance of the new incarnation premiering last night. The actor playing him, Peter Capaldi, was one of those kids watching the show in Scotland. In fact, there’s a letter written by him to the BBC Radio Times when he was 15. He’s also one of the oldest actors to play the character, bucking a trend of actors under 40 or 30 playing the role.

My excitement was in the idea of a true fan of the series was going to be a more mature character and hopefully reverse some of the God-awful writing and plot twists of the last half-dozen years. That didn’t quite happen.

I see people who are not starting to watch the new series in their adulthood because of the nods to the earlier series, the weird obsession with steam punk technology and the creepily ultra-modern sensibility. I think there are two kind of Doctor Who fans; those who watched as children and those who started as adults. Unfortunately, those watching now as kids have been exposed to a stream of America-bashing, human-bashing, polyamory, inter-species bestiality, a messianic main character and a series of companions who moon over him like a teenage heart throb. Most of that was still there last night, included with hand-wringing about how old the Doctor looks now.

Culture sucks all over.


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Now Watch This Drive

August 23, 2014
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Fair warning, below I’ve posted the trailer for Michael Moore’s¬†Fahrenheit 9/11.

Now go back up and watch it (again). Replace The USA Patriot Act with Obamacare and Bush golfing and joking with Obama golfing and joking.

One of the liberal tactics to disparage someone is to take a unique situation and make it look like the worst thing in the world. Fortunately, everything Obama does is one of the worst things in the world and the same things liberals trashed Bush over are being repeated by Obama. Now it’s the same, only different.

When do we get that movie trailer?


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