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Friday links

  • Jim Bovard writes in Reason on the high price of security theater. Then he went on C-Span to talk about it, too.
  • Which takes us to Richard Rahn’s “Kill the regulatory parasite.”
  • Oh, Katie, Katie, Katie. You went the full Rather. You should never go the full Rather. And at least he didn’t make phony-baloney excuses.
  • A recent study says that the threshhold-based blood tests used by states to determine whether legal pot users are impaired or not aren’t based in sound science. This wild-and-crazy pro-pot-user claim comes from those mad radicals at … the American Automobile Association. AAA.
  • John Tamny: if we love the big banks (“we” meaning not you and me, necessarily), we must love them enough to let them fail.
  • Obama, foreign aid, promises, and corruption in high places.
  • Speaking of smartphones (as we were earlier this week), reader F. sends this cheery word that F*c*b**k’s admission that it’s listening to you via your phone’s microphone while you’re using its app may be only part of the even creepier, much creepier, truth.
  • How much creepier can things get? Advanced tech is not the only thing we have to worry about. How about nuclear capability coordinated by eight-inch floppies??? For you young things, eight-inch floppies were already obsolete when I got my first computer in 1982. (H/T MtK)

I normally like to end links posts on a cheery, or at least a “lite” note. But there seems to be no joy in Mudville or anyplace else today. I need to go look for some cute dog videos or somesuch.

ADDED: Well, wait. I didn’t have time to look for any cute dog videos. But since today’s theme seems to be “creepy as all get out,” I remembered this story about … um, men who live as dogs. Yes, not cute. But the best I could do today, sorry. I suppose we’ll soon be hearing these “pups” demand special restroom privileges. (And a big thanks to Cat for turning my stomach.)

UPDATE #2: Is this our future? (Stolen from Never Yet Melted.)


Oh! But wait! That chart doesn’t include self-identified canines who have sex with any of the other 31 “genders.” Racism! Specisism! Haters! Privilege!


  1. Bear
    Bear May 27, 2016 12:18 pm

    I think I’m going to identify as a big bank — too big to fail –and get millions in bail outs.

    I have a collection of 8″, 5.25″, and 3.5″ floppies. I showed that 8 incher to young co-worker in the ’90s and he thought it was a gag from a novelty store. I even mentioned the .gov’s use of obsolete floppies in Net Assets.

    Sadly, I didn’t hang on to the punch cards and paper tape. The tape would have been cool, but I was doing so much keypunch (look it up , kids) back in the ’80s that I’d have screamed if I came upon a card at home. And yes, I was keypunching for .gov.

  2. Fred
    Fred May 27, 2016 1:11 pm

    The Bovard interview is excellent. Covers a lot of ground. I’m very surprised this was on teevee. Of note, was the lack of decent from R, D and I.

    “the full Rather”
    That just tickles.

    Let them fail indeed.
    The big bank bailout was the day I became fully converted. I was watching Fox News, crying, thinking I voted for that m-f-er (baby bush) and he’s nothing but a banana republic marxist, the country has been taken over by commies, this is a coup d’etat. I was PIIIIIIIIIISSED!
    It started with homeland security. What kind of country even has an organization called homeland security. It’s KGB, east germany, I don’t know what.

    “smartphones” SMART = tracking you. I’m just gonna keep saying it, who knows, maybe somebody will believe me one day.

  3. jed
    jed May 27, 2016 5:08 pm

    I’m disappointed that none of those symbols incorporates a propellor beanie – and a bit surprised too, given its origin at 4Chan. Am I the only one who sees a stick-figure submarine there?

    Saw the puppy-play article. Well, as they say across the pond, “Horses for courses”. I do question taking such thing to extremes, but it ain’t the strangest thing I’ve heard of. I was going to make a comment about “as long as it doesn’t interfere with your normal life …”, but realized how that just doesn’t come out right. But I see a definite downside to the installation of hydrants in all public facilities.

    Didn’t we have discussion here a while back about otherkin? And, species dysphoria is a thing, ya know.

    Speaking of studies, have to give my friend Billll some linky for the Scientific Humor.

  4. LarryArnold
    LarryArnold May 27, 2016 9:37 pm

    I guess to Katie and Co., all’s fair in gun-control and war. The real disappointment is the mainstream media pi$$ing away what’s left of their reputation.

    After my last two days I’d rather have the missiles controlled by those 8″ diskettes than Windows 10.

    A joint communique solemnly pledged to drive “out those lawyers, real estate agents and accountants who facilitate or are complicit in corruption.”

    Take out the “facilitators.” That’ll clear everything up. No need to hassle the politicians who actually steal the money and fill the accounts.

  5. Jim B.
    Jim B. May 28, 2016 12:19 am

    While I didn’t deal with the 8″ Disks, I did with the 5s, and the 3.5s when I was learning to deal first with the Apple IIs in schools. (They were still a little too expensive for most people at home). I’ve cut my teeth with the command line interface. The GUIs was a huge jump than young people realized.

    And those punch cards, OMG, did that for about one semester in college.

    As for sex? Well, some people are asking what happened to “normal” sex.

  6. Jim B.
    Jim B. May 28, 2016 12:25 am

    Oh, as for Katie and the gun control piece she made? They’re just showing us how much of a communist propagandist mill they have become, much like a Russia News television broadcaster used to be, if not still.

    At least it shows that Katie has absolutely no credibility any more. And therefore is never to be trusted with anything ever again.

  7. Bill St. Clair
    Bill St. Clair May 28, 2016 6:27 am

    End the TSA. Replace them with frangible ammo vending machines.

  8. Frank
    Frank May 28, 2016 6:50 am

    I believe it was Vin Suprynowicz, in one of his books (probably Waco Killers), who suggested that if airlines really wanted to make their flights safe they would allow their passengers to carry sidearms onboard and the airlines would issue frangible ammo.

    I have sometimes imagined this scenario (although realistically it will probably NOT happen):

    At the gate, ticketing agent asks, “Ma’am, are you carrying?”

    Passenger: “Of course!”

    Agent: “What caliber?”

    Passenger: “9mm”

    Agent: “Frangible ammo?”

    Passenger: “Not today.”

    Agent: “OK, ma’am, here’s a box of 9mm frangible rounds, please reload with them before take off and return them after the flight ends. And please do not put your firearm in the overhead bin – would not do much good there if you need it in a hurry, right? Have a safe flight!”

  9. LarryA
    LarryA May 28, 2016 10:29 am

    Not sure you would really need frangible ammo. “One bullet hole will bring down the aircraft” is a myth. See:

    In fact, you might be better off using hardball.

  10. Claire
    Claire May 28, 2016 11:15 am

    “Didn’t we have discussion here a while back about otherkin? And, species dysphoria is a thing, ya know.”

    Yeah, we did have a discussion about that. Several years ago. After I met a charming “furry” at the BHM booth at the Mother Earth News fair. She wore a wolf’s tail and also gave one to me. It was very cool.

    As to “species dysphoria” being a thing … well, everything seems to be a thing these days. But a bit too much of a thing, at times.

    When I was 10 I wanted to be and often play-acted as a wild stallion. I could feel the wind blowing through my mane and my hooves pounding the grasses of the prairie. But that didn’t make me a horse. When I was 13 I wished with all my heart to be male, but that didn’t make me a boy (and I’m quite glad nobody decided that I should “be transitioned” to maleness with hormones and surgery or use the boys’ bathroom at that point).

    Both horses and boys were simply more free that I was (or so I thought then), and it was freedom I really wanted.

    I’m just getting sick (aren’t we all) of the crazy compulsion that, “I self-identify as X, therefore I AM X, and if you don’t accept it, you’re a hater.”

  11. Ellendra
    Ellendra May 28, 2016 4:40 pm

    “•Speaking of smartphones (as we were earlier this week), reader F. sends this cheery word that F*c*b**k’s admission that it’s listening to you via your phone’s microphone while you’re using its app may be only part of the even creepier, much creepier, truth. ”

    I recently took on a second job as a transcriptionist. About 97% of the assignments are the kind of things you’d expect. Interviews, classrooms, legal discussions, etc.

    That other 3% is what’s creepy. Private phone calls, locker rooms, homes. Some of the recordings, one person even asks if they’re being recorded only to be assured that they’re not.

    There was no background check for this transcriptionist job. Anybody and their uncle could be hearing these.

  12. Laird
    Laird May 28, 2016 8:00 pm

    Well, perhaps it’s a good thing that the DOD is using those 8″ floppies to coordinate its nuclear capabilities. After all, that would make the system almost impossible to hack; no one else has a reader for them any more. I have a few of those in my files, left over from my days practicing law in the early 80s. My firm used those huge IBM word processing machines (two secretaries per machine), and I have a lot of old documents and forms saved on them. But they’re lost forever; several years ago I tried to find someone who could convert them to modern software and was unable to do so. But now I know: I just need to take them to the DOD!

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