Monday, December 15, 2014

Sydney: The known, the unknown, and that which shall not be mentioned.

Well, it seems that Australia joins Canada in having Islamic nuts killing people for no reason. The Sidney Australia nut took 17 people hostage yesterday at around 10AM local time, the cops raided the place at just after 2am local time this morning in response to gunfire from inside the location.

40 sexual and indecent assault charges, conviction for sending offensive letters to families of deceased Australian soldiers, on bail with a murder charge pending, now he's a dead guy.

Details here.

There's a long list of things that the paper says are known and a shorter one of things that aren't. I won't reproduce that here, just go visit the link.

There are a few things conspicuously absent from the lists, however.

First, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot's behavior is interesting. From the paper:

This despite the fact that:
  • A black flag with an Islamic creed written on it in Arabic was displayed in the windows.
So the Lone Gunman obviously considered it an act of Islamic terrorism, but the Prime Minister... doesn't.  Interesting, yes? Stephen Harper decided the Ottawa Cenotaph shooting was terrorism and said so before they even got all of Michael Zehaf-Bibeau's blood off the tile at the House of Commons.

Second, how does one lone nut take 17 people hostage? Answer, GUN CONTROL. Unmentioned in the paper anywhere, this is Australian gun control working as it was intended to do. 17 people can't be held against their will for almost 24 hours by just one guy unless their government has made them helpless first.

Third, not to be a Monday Morning quarterback or anything, but how many times do you have to shoot a guy before he's no longer a threat? Apparently a lot, given the number of muzzle flashes in the video from Sidney. Indeed, in Ottawa the Sergeant at Arms and his men shot Bibeau 12 times before he fell down, and new info indicates the guard on the front door managed to nail Bibeau one time as he ran through. Got him square, didn't seem to slow him at all. Pistols suck. Maybe consider switching to .308 hollow points for home defense.

Fourth and finally, just like Michael Zehaf-Bibeau in Canada, this gink Man Heron Monis was -extremely- well know to Australian police. They knew every damn thing about this guy down to how he likes his eggs in the morning. They couldn't possibly have had more intel on him. And yet, well known, under surveillance semi-coherent nutcase and out-on-bail criminal Monis was able to get himself a gun and a "machete", and then pull this suicide-by-cop standoff. In Canada the shooter Bibeau was part of a fricking RCMP outreach program that exists to try and talk these freak Mooselimb radicals out of doing anything crazy. Major fail, outreach dudes.

Plus the cherry on top, both of these situations happened in the capital cities of both countries where there's cops and frigging cameras all over town. A squirrel can't take a dump on the sidewalk without being photographed from at least three angles.

This proves two things I've been saying for years. Gun control doesn't control guns, much less crime. Ubiquitous surveillance by police doesn't deter criminals, much less terrorists.

Gun control and ubiquitous surveillance are there to control the populace, not to reduce threats against the populace. That's because as far as the police and the government generally are concerned, the populace IS the threat.

You are STUPID. You must be CONTROLLED. Now get back to work paying those taxes, serfs.

The Phantom

Thursday, December 04, 2014

What Thomas Sowell is too polite to say.

I spotted this on Drudge today.

Thomas Sowell, author of "Basic Economics," argued that increasing the number of foreign workers in the US "will keep down the wages of American workers" and that "you would have to get a psychiatrist" to explain the GOP's support for increased foreign labor on Thursday's "Laura Ingraham Show."
"The competition will keep down the wages of American workers, I mean, this is not a new principle. I mean this has been known for hundreds of years," he stated.
When asked why the GOP would support such a policy, he responded "you would have to get a psychiatrist or someone like that to explain that. There are cleaning women who say 'I don't do windows. I don't explain Republicans.'"

Well, Thomas Sowell is being polite in implying the Republicans are crazy. They're not crazy. They're selling America for a bowl of potage.

I think a decent accountant could explain exactly why the Republican leadership is supporting Obama's idiot immigration policies. Just let him alone in a small room with their tax returns and their donor lists for a couple hours, and he'd be able to lay it out for you.

Its the same reason Obama has the policy in the first place. Huge, gigantic, stupefying amounts of money are being made on the backs of illegal immigrants, and some of that titanic wad of cash rubs off on the politicians who let more illegals come in.

See, big industry doesn't want more legal workers. Because legal workers are expensive. There's regulations that make it prohibitive to hire any legal worker even at minimum wage.

They want to hire "contractors". The "contractor" then hires illegal workers, who do whatever the job is and save the big industry from having to follow the regulations.

That's why Obama's "amnesty" is such bullshit. Nobody is going to go for it. they'll stay illegal unless or until they get pinched by La Migra, THEN they'll take the amnesty.

The Phantom

Monday, December 01, 2014

What goes around, comes around.

Coming home to roost. Its a biiiig one!
In a shocking, simply shocking twist of fate, the journalist who published Ferguson ex-policeman Darren Wilson's home address has been calling the Chicago PD non-stop. Because some dastardly terrorist published HER address.

The New York Times journalist who published Darren Wilson's home address wants police protection and has been calling the police nonstop, has learned.
Julie Bosman "keeps calling the 020th District station complaining about people harassing and threatening her," our source told us. She's also "complaining about numerous food deliveries being sent to her residence."
Chicago police department sources alerted about the glaring double standard on Friday.
300lb chicken coming home to roost, huh Julie?

Wouldn't it be simply AWFUL if poor little innocent Julie Bosman had to quit her job and leave town because nassssty people kept threatening her? Like what's happening to Darren Wilson, for example? Oh the Humanity!

The Phantom

Oh look, Culture DOES matter.

Turns out, two tier justice and single parent families are worse for you than living in Nigeria.

Led by Dr. Kristen Mmari, an assistant professor at Johns Hopkins Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health, the survey assessed health challenges faced by 2,400 15- to 19-year-olds from impoverished areas in Baltimore, Shanghai, Johannesburg, Ibadan and New Delhi, as well as their perceptions of their environments.

The researchers found many similarities—in all five cities, adolescents were exposed to unsanitary conditions, substance abuse and violence—but the differences between each area were especially compelling. Overall, teenagers in Baltimore and Johannesburg, despite being located in comparably wealthy countries, had far worse health outcomes and tended to perceive their communities more negatively.

Really? How terrible! Who did that to these poor children?

According to Mmari, one could point to a combination of environmental and social factors, including the exposure to violence and a lack of social support, which were found to be less prevalent in the three other cities.

Wait, Baltimore has less "social support" than Nigeria? How is that possible?

Adolescents in Baltimore and Johannesburg also had relatively lower levels of "social cohesion," a phrase used to describe the emotional support provided by one's family and neighbors. In Baltimore, many poor teens grow up in single-parent homes and have a father in prison, while those in Johannesburg tend to lose their parents to AIDS.

"In those cities, kids were much more likely to live in a one-parent household," Mmari says. (Or, as a youth in Baltimore described it, "The kids are being raised by themselves.") "Whereas in Delhi, most of these kids are still living in two-parent homes, so they are getting much more support."

Free welfare money and a general "if it feels right do it" culture is -worse- than living in the crappiest part of Nigeria or India where just getting food is a major challenge.

In other words, Liberals did it to them.

Like I've been saying, all cultures are not created equal.

The Phantom

Thursday, November 27, 2014

The LP record makes a comeback.

Remember these? They're baaaaaack!

Here's an interesting datum. The long assumed dead vinyl record from the Ancient Times when TV was in black and white and dinosaurs roamed the Earth sold one million albums in England this year.

In 2014 you'd be forgiven for thinking the music industry is all about online charts and digital downloads, but the latest figures released by the Official Charts Company reveal a corresponding boom in vinyl record sales which have reached an 18-year high.
More than one million records have been sold in the UK so far this year – a number which is expected to rise even further by the end of Christmas. We haven't bought that many since 1996, back when cassette tapes were still considered technologically advanced...
Sales have been driven primarily by the Arctic Monkeys (whose LP AM is the biggest selling vinyl of 2014), Jack White and Pink Floyd, with Oasis, Status Quo and David Bowie also contributing to the impressive figures.
The Ancient Vinyl  is still only 2% of the total UK music biz, but this is an unexpected major increase in the sales of a presumed dead technology. Vinyl is (slowly) gaining sales as regular popular music is losing sales.

Once upon a time I used to work with high fidelity speakers, and I learned then that CDs and other digital recording mediums can't come even close to the sound fidelity available on vinyl. Only two channels, but the frequency response and more importantly the dynamic range and signal to noise ratio possible with top end record players and diamond stylus phonograph cartridges is much higher than you get with even BluRay audio. MP3s sound like crap next to a vinly record played through a decent stereo, there's no comparison at all.

Add to this the habit of sound engineers to record things "loud", and you get sound like singers yelling into a pillow on your iPod. Its all kind of mushy and fuzzy, like it was being played through a sock.

Positive signs that people may be starting to give a rip how their music sounds.

The Phantom

Thursday, November 20, 2014

#Shirtstorm continues: Malcolm Winter "explains" why Dr. Matt Taylor had to grovel.

As posted yesterday, the nice lady who made That Shirt defended herself and Dr. Matt Talor of Comet Landing fame on her blog.  Most of the comments on that blog were positive, but there were a few from the troll I smashed yesterday, assorted other SJW apologists and other random idiots.  Consensus of opinion seems to be we'd all like to buy one of Those Shirts please, so we can get on with annoying the SJWs. If Elly gets busy, she can make a tidy sum of money off this Shirtstorm farce.

But then there was this one, by Mr. "Malcolm Winter", hopefully not his real name but one never knows. Quote:
Pavel Bansky - I'm honestly curious. Would you protect a KKK member's right to don KKK regalia?
OBVIOUSLY in a free country we do protect the right of the KKK to play dress-up. The United States has always done this. Canada's record is a bit more checkered, but the general rule is yes, we protect people and groups we find disgusting in the name of Free Speech."Mr. Winter" made several comments which I will cherry pick some snippets of to reproduce his "argument", such as it is.

Surely I can't make judgements on Matt based solely on his wearing of a shirt that many found offensive (myself included) or on Elly for making it. It seems obvious that Matt and Elly (like most people who make mistakes) are good people with good intentions. However, my issue is not with those actions but with how they and others have responded to how others have *experienced* those actions, regardless of intention.

This is EXACTLY why there aren't more women in STEM. Because when women raise legitimate concerns about the way they're being treated, instead of taking some time to think about how one's actions affect others who have very different histories and life experiences, one instead attempts to justify those actions by saying that any other perception of the action is illegitimate.

"STEM" is Science, Technology, Engineering and Medicine careers. The stalking horse here is that women are fewer than men in these careers.

Mr. Winter says that's because White Men that run everything in STEM are mean, and they just won't LISTEN, and the women just don't get an even break. And that's why Dr. MAtt Taylor was asking for a full court international internet pillory for wearing Elly Prizeman's shirt. He didn't think about how his actions would "affect others who have very different histories and life experiences".

Other commenters were having none of that, and pointed out the obvious holes:

Winter, there are men being offended because women are not covering their faces in public. Does it make it alright, then?
If you are prescribing Dr. Taylor's dress code you are inevitably agreeing with men prescribing dress codes for women. Is that your intent?

Winter replies:

Pavel Bansky, I think that prescribing dress codes based on double standards that reinforce the oppression of (and violence toward) women is very different (and actually the opposite) of prescribing dress codes that send the message that reinforcing the oppression of women is NOT acceptable.

Yes, he really did say that HIS dress codes are proper and correct because they reduce oppression, where as Mooselimb dress codes are bad and wrong because they increase oppression. Zero awareness, zero thought that maybe -any- prescribed dress code is an oppression and an abridgement of basic freedom.

Also this:

I think maybe you are all making the same assumptions about my argument. However, my argument is about structural oppression, not individual oppression, although the two are certainly related.
I left [STEM] because of the lack of critical thought in STEM. I found that the rigid definition of critical thought as only whether something has scientific validity, accuracy, and/or precision as a deficient one.

Wait, what?
I've spent nearly three years of my life travelling and working in over 30 countries, most of which are "developing." I have seen a fair share of "real oppression" (whatever that means) and I find covert oppression just as insidious to society as overt oppression, perhaps even more so since it is so much harder to fix something most people can't see.

Dude must have been really hauling ass to live and work in over 30 countries in just three years. And he can see things that are invisible! Wow.

By "critical thought," I think perhaps Tracy Ore defines it best by including the identification and challenging of cultural assumptions, awareness of our place and time in our culture, searching for alternative ways of thinking, and developing a reflective analysis. All of this is something I never found in STEM and I know now that that's one of the many reasons I left.

Yes, engineers and programmers are not known for "including the identification and challenging of cultural assumptions" when trying to determine if the bridge will fall down or not. They're much more about validity, accuracy and precision. Because bridge falling down = bad.
I believe that gauging others' responses to my behavior as a result of my privilege and adjusting that behavior when I can is an important part of being a contributing member to society.

Yes, you are clearly a saint in your own mind. Except you and your little friends made super genius Matt Taylor grovel on international TV. So I'm thinking maybe you don't look so saintly from where I'm standing. You look more like the guys who throw acid on girls in Afghanistan.

See Malcolm, the point of a Free Country is that people are free to do what they want. Most particularly, people are free to do stuff that you don't like. Unless you can prove that their actions and expressions have harmed you personally. Which means they physically injured you or they cost you money.

Lucky for you, hurt feelings don't count. Because if they did, you and a lot of other Social Justice Warriors would owe Matt Taylor and Elly Prizeman a shitlocker full of money.

You, Mr. Malcolm Winter, are an enemy of freedom. Consider your sins, and repent.

The Phantom

Monday, November 17, 2014

The woman who made Mankind's first comet landing all about her.

Rose Eveleth, professional Offended Person.
Her name is Rose Eveleth, she works for The Atlantic magazine, apparently. This is her Twitter feed. She was offended, simply Offended I tell you, over The Shirt.

Dear Rose, fuck off.

Ladies shield your eyes!
This is the scientist wearing The Shirt. With video of him apologizing in tears. Which is just heart wrenching, to me anyway. On his biggest day of his career, he's saying sorry on international TV about a friggin' shirt.

Not what I would have worn to a press conference, but then I didn't land a space-robot on a freaking comet either. If I was that big a boss, I'd wear whatever the hell I liked.

This is the woman who made the shirt. Custom shirt for the scientist who's team got that robot down on that comet, because she's a friend of his. She's sticking up for herself and her friend in no uncertain terms. That makes her a Class Act in my book, and honorable.

Also she doesn't look like the kind of woman skinny ass Rose Eveleth should be pissing off. We're talking really short cat fight here.

This was suggested as the appropriate shirt to wear for Feminists to be happy.

Uhm, do they have legs? Or hair? And where's the ray guns?
'Nuff said.

The Phantom

Update: Welcome According To Hoyt readers and other Monster Hunters! 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Big Brother really is spying on your cellphone.

I keep posting these things because it seems hard to believe, but really, if you have a cell phone the cops know where you are down to TEN FEET if they want to. It doesn't have to be turned on, either.

The Justice Department is scooping up data from thousands of mobile phones through devices deployed on airplanes that mimic cellphone towers, a high-tech hunt for criminal suspects that is snagging a large number of innocent Americans, according to people familiar with the operations.

The U.S. Marshals Service program, which became fully functional around 2007, operates Cessna aircraft from at least five metropolitan-area airports, with a flying range covering most of the U.S. population, according to people familiar with the program.

Here's how it works.

Cellphones are programmed to connect automatically to the strongest cell tower signal. The device being used by the U.S. Marshals Service identifies itself as having the closest, strongest signal, even though it doesn't, and forces all the phones that can detect its signal to send in their unique registration information.

Even having encryption on a phone, such as the kind included on Apple Inc. 's iPhone 6, doesn't prevent this process.

The technology is aimed at locating cellphones linked to individuals under investigation by the government, including fugitives and drug dealers, but it collects information on cellphones belonging to people who aren't criminal suspects, these people said. They said the device determines which phones belong to suspects and "lets go" of the non-suspect phones.

They basically ping every phone in range as they fly over the city, and use triangulation to find the location of each phone. They say they "let go" of the info except on the phones they are actively searching for, but that's BS. The machine HAS TO KEEP A RECORD of every ping, because that's how it works. They may in fact flush the memory after every flight, but I have very little confidence that's what's being done. We'd have to be crazy to believe that, given the NSA and the license plate reading programs etc.

See, if all they do is fly this thing over the city every day for a few weeks, they build up a database that can track the movement of pretty much every phone. Where you work, where you live, which way you drive to and from, and all the other trips you make. And what other phones are at those locations. And so forth. So if they want to know where you were last Tuesday at 2pm, or where you will most likely be NEXT Tuesday at 2pm, they will.

Here's the killer part: so can anybody else. It isn't hard to build a box that acts like a cell tower. Here's some guys who built one and stuck it in a model airplane. That was three years ago. How many of these things are wafting about lately? We don't know. There's no way to tell. They can be made -small-, like a shoebox or less, including a big-ass battery to run it for six months. They can be in cars or sitting still on a light pole, bridge, mailbox, etc.

How to defend yourself? Use unidentified burner phones. Or stick your phone in a metal box for when you want your privacy, or take the battery out. Notice that you can't take the battery out of an iPhone. Convenient design for somebody, hmm?

Long term, I'm sure there's a way to detect if a "cell tower" is moving, and to have software that will not reply to a ping from a moving source. That leaves the surveillance performed by legit cell towers, but there's no way to avoid that. Its how they work.

Plan accordingly, my friends.

The Phantom