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Month: March 2015

Everybody’s always wrong: thoughts on TEOTWAWKI scenarios

I just love reading predictions. Economic. Political. Psychic. No matter. It’s amusing (and a good reminder not to get too cocky). ‘Cause they’re always wrong.

Economists have a special talent for being wrong; they’re right up there with psychics for how egregious they can be. (And just like psychics, they like to edit themselves after the fact to show how “right” they were. The guy who got 9 out of 10 predictions wrong will put up advertising banners touting the one he got sort of semi-correct.) But that’s another story.

Today the “everybody’s always wrong” topic is TEOTWAWKI.

Understand, this isn’t to knock anybody. I perfectly well understand why we need to think about future scenarios, even if our best predictions can only end up being approximations. In fact one of the two articles I’m highlighting below is quite well-thought-out.

It’s just that everybody who ever predicts the future is wrong. Period. Whatever happens always happens in a different way than we think it will. The future may “rhyme” with our predictions, but it will never match them — and it rarely, rarely even comes close to what we envision. That’s just life, not anybody’s fault. But the reason that matters is that, whatever happens, we’ll need flexibility to deal with it.

If we think TEOTWAWKI is inevitable (and we’re kinda secretly hopeful it is so we can haul out our Super-Duper Whizzwhacker cannon and start blasting away at zombies), then we may end up wasting a lot of money, energy, and emotion if zombies never come knocking. OTOH, if we’re sunnily convinced that things just aren’t going to get that bad, we may end up so stunned by reality that we stand there numb and dumb while the zombies run over us.

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Bulk Collection of Signals Intelligence

An Agitator who might not want to be named sent me a .pdf pre-publication copy of an upcoming report, “Bulk Collection of Signals Intelligence.” It’s from the wittily named “Committee on Responding to Section 5(d) of Presidential Policy Directive 28: The Feasibility of Software to Provide Alternatives to Bulk Signals Intelligence Collection; Computer Science and Telecommunications Board; Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences; National Research Council ” and its aim is apparently (not their words) to find better ways of targeting everybody rather than just randomly spying on everybody. (It’s a fine distinction, I know. But when you’re well-connected enough…

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Midweek links

Chortle. Mexicans (presumably Mexican yuppies) are now importing pot from the U.S. Sigh. I really thought the Buddhists were better than this. Okay, it’s not Buddhists. It’s the gummint of Myanmar, so not exactly the heart of enlightenment. But still people, get a clue. If you have to force others to respect your holy men, it’s clear you don’t actually think your holy men are worthy of respect on their own. The GNU Manifesto turns 30 this year. (H/T jed) Raising up a whole new generation of shooters. Of course, it’s all the fault of the eeeevil gun industry. But…

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Book review: Summer of the Eagles

Summer of the Eagles By Jackie Clay Mason Marshall Press, January 28, 2015 205 pages, trade paperback or Kindle edition From Amazon.com or the publisher (scroll down to buy) When Jess Hazzard rides through the gates of the Wyoming Territorial Prison, he wants only one thing: to get away from people as far and fast as possible and be alone. He’s just served five hellish years for a crime he didn’t commit and is looking only for peace. But first he has to earn money, and here his reputation gets him in trouble. Not only is he known as a…

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Survival thumb drives: A reminder from Greylocke

Last month I blogged about those bootable Knoppix thumb drives containing files of preparedness info. Greylocke, who’s now making the drives (from unopened, buyer-supplied USB sticks), asked me to post a reminder. Seems only a handful of people have so far taken him up on the offer. And it is for a limited time, so if you’re interested, check the instructions, then go for it. He’s hoping somebody else will step up to take the project over from where it was left when his colleague Scott died. He also writes: “I am hoping to bring some more capability to the…

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Monday links

Kit Lange pens an open letter to the sheriffs of Washington state. Yes, Kit is revealing herself to be one impressive woman. So it wasn’t enough for the feddies to go after our woodstoves. Now our dreadful BBQ emissions are the problem. Even the WaPo thinks Obama is blowing smoke on the issue of guns. Some things are still creepy despite being “voluntary.” Adidas adds near-field communications to selected clothing items. Other things may be technically “voluntary” but still Orwellian. No, Hertz has no plans to spy on drivers with those in-car cams it’s now installing. Noooo. Of course not.…

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Impressions

I was very lucky in one feature of the old wreck of a house I bought back in ought-13. It has enormous, good-quality, double-pane windows, all installed within the last five or six years (PUD-subsidized specials, I’m sure; I’ve often had reason to believe those good windows are the only thing holding the entire structure together). And it has this one room whose sole purpose seems to be to enjoy those windows to the max.

It’s actually a dining room. It opens onto the kitchen and it had pantry shelves when I bought the place. But to me, it is a totally amazing sunroom. In this part of the country, having a sun room is a remarkable thing. We love sun! ‘Cause it’s so rare. Like diamonds, rubies, and honest politicians. So even if the temperature inside occasionally gets up to 90+ in the summer, I’m gloriously cheered because — Oh, look, for a change it’s TOO HOT!!! Isn’t that JUST AWESOME???

Sunroom-FinishedWalls-Ceiling_031515

I was unlucky with this room in another way.

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Oh yeah, no nerfing here.

Does anybody else here still get JPFO alerts? Didja notice the one they sent out this evening? On the day of the week that, until two weeks ago, belonged to the highly principled, always incisive David Codrea? A three-year-old article. From Bloomberg.com. Advocating having armed guards at every exit in theaters, supermarkets, malls, and other public spaces. (Yeah, and you wanna pay $30 for your movie tickets, do you? And ten bucks for your loaf of bread?) Because, you know, security works so well in airports. (The author really said that. He did.) And what would be the main purpose…

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Friday links

The FAA sez you can’t post your little drone videos on YouTube. Hahahahahahahahaha! Now let’s see you enforce that, feddies. Now this woman was some spy! Kurt Hofmann ventures the thought that maybe the fedgov shouldn’t abolish the ATF after all. I’m as impressed with Kit Lange as Kevin Wilmeth is. And for similar reasons. The mysterious fate of Sharpton’s financial records. Hm. Maybe Hillary conveniently deleted them like she’s deleting herself. Oh, to heck with all the serious stuff. Have some babies annoying cute dogs or maybe some cute dogs annoying babies.

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