Friday, 26 February 2016

09:26 – Internet problems ate my day yesterday. I’m still not sure what’s going on. We’re on Skybest fiber broadband, provisioned for 20 Mbps down and 2 Mbps up. Until yesterday morning, my notebook sitting on the dining room table was getting about 8 Mbps down, which is acceptable given how far it is from the WiFi WAP. As of yesterday morning, it started yielding a 4,500+ ms ping and down/up of 0.1 Mbps, with frequent DNS resolution errors and time outs. Also, the evening before, Netflix streaming died with a Roku unable to connect error. The Roku is on a TP Link powerline ethernet adapter.

I called tech support. Skybest’s tech support is head and shoulders above any other broadband provider I’ve ever heard of. She spent almost an hour on the phone with me, resetting the TA and router and trying various things. At that point, the Netflix streaming was working, as was WiFi to my Fire and Barbara’s notebook. She wasn’t satisfied and told me she’d have a technician visit as soon as one was free. An hour or so later, two techs showed up. They repeated a lot of what I’d already done while talking to support, and verified that I had a decent WiFi signal upstairs as well as down, even though my notebook on the dining room table was still showing 0.1 Mbps down and up. Barbara’s notebook on her desk 10 feet away was showing 8/2 Mbps, even though it connects by WiFi.

After they left, I unplugged the monitor and a bunch of USB devices from my notebook and carried it into Barbara’s office, where I was getting the same 8/2 Mbps. Aha, I thought, for some reason WiFi has taken a dislike to the dining room table. At that point, I gave up for the evening. This morning, I again checked my notebook on Barbara’s desk and it again gave me 8/2 Mbps. So I carried it 10 feet to the dining room table, expecting 0.1/0.1 Mbps, but it tested at 8/2 Mbps. Apparently, the situation somehow resolved itself. Then I plugged in the monitor, USB keyboard, USB printer, etc. I clicked on the Start Test icon to check again. You guessed it: 0.1/0.1.

45 thoughts on “Friday, 26 February 2016”

  1. Is it the WIFI signal or your device?

    Turn off your computer and try a speed test from a smart phone if you have one. If you don’t have a smart phone try the speed test from a tablet after turning off the offending computer. One of those external devices may be messing with your WIFI frequencies.

  2. Gremlins. Like my main desktop: as of a few weeks ago, it takes about 10 minutes after displaying the desktop, before I can actually use it. Everything seems to check out, no meaningful system changes that I can think of, but there’s no point in even trying – it just needs time to stretch, yawn and wake up.

    Definitely gremlins.

  3. Two things, Robert:

    1) The various listening devices that the ATF/FBI/DHS/NSA put in your home are probably interfering with your wifi signal. You know you’ve been on their watch list for years.

    2) So, you had to go like 24 hours without Internet porn? That’s hell on Earth, man. 🙂

  4. Why would I be on anyone’s watch list?

    Yes, it’s gremlins. Either that, or a print job queued up for a printer that’s no longer connected to this system. I killed that print job and now everything appears to be working normally EXCEPT that the speed test site is still showing 0.1/0.1. Gremlins.

  5. “Always great to start the day with happy news for a change.”

    Reminds me of the time a British sniper took out six Taliban with a single shot…

    “The sniper—who shot at the man because he was carrying a weapon, not because he could identify what the vest contained from more than 1/2 a mile away—didn’t know the man was a suicide bomber until after his shot turned the bomber and his five buddies turned into a pink mist.

    That said, this was one heck of a shot, and I’m glad that he’s on our side.”

  6. It ain’t gremlins here; our smartypants phone signal sucks, mainly because we’re on a lakeshore (I vaguely recall it has something to do with all the flat water absorbing signals or something, probably have it wrong, but the crappy coverage is rampant all up and down the lake here) and we live in a brick house. Furthermore, the highway department has a big pile of scrap metal a couple of hundred yards away (not sure how this would affect us, but I’m a cretin and still learning).

    Internet, since we hooked up with Comcast, has been excellent, no problems, no complaints; if for some reason it’s slow, it’s usually either around that infamous time of day near 5 o’clock, just like the not-so-good-old-days with AOL and CompuServe (both of which still exist, incidentally) or I need to reboot the Windows box (at least weekly, not so with any of the Linux machines here).

    Bright sunny day and everything is white again; Mrs. OFD should be home from NH tonight at some point. Sunday morning she leaves for semi-rural Kentucky.

  7. I may be teaching my grandmother to suck eggs, but..

    I’m going to assume your laptop was on battery (or thought it was on battery) and throw out an idea. My recollection is the laptop is on Windows.

    Check your NIC configuration and ensure there are no damn fool settings telling it to ‘conserve power’ or any variance on that idea when it’s on battery. Depending on the NIC and utilities you may have to dig.

    Try your USB connected items singly in the different ports to see if that triggers it. I’ve had odd issues with powered USB ports and printers and NICs. Some prefer them, some don’t.

    @OFD I just finished reading ‘In the Heart of the Sea’. You may also enjoy it. I found the language and use of language delightful.

  8. So I carried it 10 feet to the dining room table, expecting 0.1/0.1 Mbps, but it tested at 8/2 Mbps. Apparently, the situation somehow resolved itself. Then I plugged in the monitor, USB keyboard, USB printer, etc. I clicked on the Start Test icon to check again. You guessed it: 0.1/0.1.

    I’d try unplugging all the external devices from the laptop and confirm you have full speed Internet. Then try plugging in the devices one at a time and see what happens…

  9. @Jenny: I read “In the Heart of the Sea” when it came out; I’m a glutton for local New England history and landscape stuff. Philbrick does a very good job with it all. My Quaker ancestors on Nantucket, Martha’s Vineyard and in New Bedford included a bunch of whaling people, on land and sea, and I grew up with the stories about the Essex and Moby Dick.

  10. I finished setting up the ‘Net at the condo yesterday. It comes with basic cable and internet, but you have to get a modem. I purchased a Cox modem and setup the account. I boosted the ‘Net up a level since it would only cost $11/mo. says I get 115/12. Not bad.

  11. 92/12 here. Seems OK. Better than our previous ISP, Fairpoint.

    I am given to understand, however, that CONUS speeds suck compared to some other countries, when one might think the opposite, you know, that we have a massively high-tech and innovative industrial/capitalist empire here, and so ought to be at the very tip-top in everything.

    Still, given my druthers, and despite the earnest exhortations of Sovereign Man, I’d rather be here than anywhere else. Hell, just coming back from Moh-ree-ahl across Quebec and arriving on this side of the border, I have all I can do to not get outta the car and kiss the ground. This, according to some of my right-wing comrades of late, makes me a “patriotard.” Hard to just dump nearly 400 years of my family’s residence just here in Nova Anglia or the past century of our service in the wars and write it all off for some future “ethno-nationalist” utopia that I won’t live to see.

  12. Wow, the leaders of my county suck, “Fort Bend County suing wife and children of fallen deputy”:

    My county says that they cannot sue the party responsible for the wreck that caused the death of the sheriff’s deputy. But his widow and child sued the company so the county is suing the widow and child to recover the $300,000 in medical bills and workman’s comp payments. I call BS on that.

    I know that when I hit a person running a red light in 1997, I turned it all over to my insurance company since the other person did not have insurance. My insurance company paid almost $10,000 to fix my truck and get me a rental truck for two months. My insurance company promptly sued the other driver and got a default judgement which was negotiated into payments several years later.

    I wonder if the county is suing the widow to recover the cost of the patrol car also?

    Freaking amazing.

  13. Ostensibly, if you have fiber, you can connect directly to it — at least I can with mine. A test plugged in directly there shows what you are getting coming in the door. All my slowdown is due to the router. I’m supposed to have 100/30, and I do coming out of the fiber. But after the router (even connected by Ethernet wire) I get 57/15. Have not had time to figure out a way around that yet. Router is a Linksys that has been selling for a good 5 to 6 years, provided for free by the fiber company. I susppose there is something better, but no time for that research right now. The router does not have wireless N, so it is definitely not all current technology.

    I’m told by my telecom contact that all speed tests are now done by Ookla, no matter how they may be branded. If you go direct to their site, they have a beta that does not use Adobe Flash, and that’s what delivered the above figures.

    The other thing that occasionally slows me (a few times a year) is trouble with DNS servers. Until the last time, which lasted several days, I just slogged through with the waits, but I finally had to set up backup DNS to the Google DNS address. No access to porn sites with that, but things there automatically sort themselves out when the fiber company DNS comes back. My experience is that DNS is slow unless you work in a building where they replicate DNS in-house. Those situations are essentially instantaneous.


    “SpeedOf.Me is an HTML5 Internet speed test. No Flash or Java needed! It is the smartest and most accurate online bandwidth test. It works well on iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows and other mobile devices, as well as desktop computers.”

  15. Hmm. SpeedOf.Me shows about half the speed of the Ookla site and complains that I have AdBlocker enabled. Why don’t I trust it?

  16. So far, Trump is spending less than half the next nearest candidate on ads. It has been a big disappointment to radio and TV. He just stirs up news and gets free coverage. The losers are spending the most. Christie is such a loser, why would Trump choose him?

    I’m betting Trump will choose a woman. And the woman will be Nikki Haley.

  17. “I’m guessing that the DemoRat ticket is going to be Clinton and Castro.”

    Which Castro? I’d prefer the sister, who lives down in FL still; then when Cankles croaks or is jailed, we’ll have a sorta right-wing woman Prez. But of course Cankles would choose one of the commie brothers, both of them murdering commie scum.

    “I’m betting Trump will choose a woman. And the woman will be Nikki Haley.”

    I’m betting not; she can’t be trusted. She trashed Southern patriots and culture, and she knifed Jebster in the back after he supported her and went the extra mile for her down there. He’d be smart to pick somebody from a western or southern state, of course.

    Mrs. OFD did not make it this far tonight; got out of the gig in NH late, fire in the hotel, jackknifed tractor-trailer on the interstate, etc., etc. Exhausted, got a cold, thanks to half her class dealing with colds and flu, like a regular TB ward every day, etc. So she’s at GG’s house thirty miles south of here and will be back in the AM and have to leave again the following AM for KY and Lost Wages after that.

    Some days it don’t pay to git outta bed.

  18. That description of Haley sounds just exactly like Trump tactics (a friend calls him T-Rump). They are a perfect match. Trump was voted the #1 ladies man in high school. He will pick a woman for sure, and it ain’t gonna be Palin.

  19. The advantage of technology in the US is that we’re first with everything. The disadvantage is that because other countries implement later, their technology is better. I have worked with both US NTSC TV and European PAL. More than once, I have spent a couple months editing in suites with European PAL systems, and then having to come back to US NTSC, it is so clear that we have had truly inferior color TV for the last 45 years.

    HD has equalized that somewhat, but PAL is so easy on the eyes, it is a wonder I did not go blind working in NTSC analog all these years. PAL is just relaxing on the eyes, is the only way I know how to put it.

    Same was true for cell phones. That commercial that was so common in the US — “Can you hear me now? (moves a bit) “Can you hear me now?” was one I had my German students watch once. They could not relate. The German cell phone system calls were as clear as landline phones, and I never had a single call dropped in Germany in the 10 years I was there. Now we are supposedly a generation past what Germany had when I was there, and I still get unintelligible phone calls and calls drop out a couple times every week.

  20. “He will pick a woman for sure, and it ain’t gonna be Palin.”

    I’ll give him a choice: Ann Coulter, Marine Le Pen, or Angela “Bay” Buchanan. And when someone whines that Marine ain’t a citizen, we can then reply that we have illegals teaching kids in public schools here, driving cars with state licenses, and being on all kinds of commissions, councils, and other quasi-legal bodies. So why not Le Pen? Or doesn’t our SecState bringing Sweet Baby James over there to sing for them count for anything?

    “…it is so clear that we have had truly inferior color TV for the last 45 years.”

    I’ve heard that before, long ago; wasn’t there an American tee-vee company that made superior products and they got bought out or otherwise run outta business? CRS Syndrome again…

    “The German cell phone system calls were as clear as landline phones, and I never had a single call dropped in Germany in the 10 years I was there.”

    Technology or geography? Would they have concentrated their cell towers in a much smaller geographical space? Probably a stupid question, but hey, I’m a learner!

    Like with electricity; we have some issues here in This Really Old House, and one of my correspondents in Delaware who apparently does his own electrical work and wiring and suchlike was giving me advice today on how to do some stuff and save loads of money. But I told him I’d just a seen a pic online of a guy who’d been fooling with high-tension wires somewhere and he was just a semi-3D charred outline on the grass, boots still OK, though. I don’t wanna be That Guy, so we’ll get a pro electrician in here who knows what’s what with outlets and wiring and the panel in the cellar.

  21. OFD, house wiring is not a huge thing to worry about. Certainly not in terms of vaporizing your entire body and not even in terms of burning the house down so long as you’re not utterly clueless.

    However, if you’re really nervous about connecting the outlets and such, you can still save yourself a ton of money by running the new power lines yourself. In the old houses I’ve wired, 100% have had cross-beams in odd places mid-way up the wall, no good route from A to B, no way to get a new wire to the ceiling light without taking down the ceiling, or whatever. If you can put the time, profanity, and elbow grease into getting all the wires in place, you can pay the electrician just to connect them.

  22. RE: Cell phones in Europe.

    Yes, well the generational thing is part of it. Part of it is size. People in Europe have no idea of the SIZE of the US. When in Berlin, we had FTXs to the other side of the country in 1 day. Here, that’s a 5-day trip. PA has counties that don’t even have traffic lights.

    A girl I once dated described her trip to Poland and the guide explained the cell phone situation there. Since the end of communism (and the lack of infrastructure) they had a choice: Install land-line infrastructure or install cellular infrastructure. Cell-phones were cheaper to implement, so they did. That gives them a huge advantage over earlier adopters.

    Mr. Chuck, I seem to recall you were in the former East Germany. I would suspect a similar situation. In addition, the German obsession with perfection would play a role. They never settle for “good enough”.

    And final note: I don’t have dropped calls on my Verizon phone. There are two places in the Allegheny National Forest that I go to where I don’t get signal. That’s the _reason_ I go there. I wouldn’t want it any other way. Verizon isn’t a corp full of saints, but the service is exceptional.

  23. 110 is for pikers. You should rewire for 220.

    I don’t worry about outlets & such in the house. I turn off the breaker because my wife has a shrill voice when agitated. I’ve played it cautious, though. I had 200 amp service installed when I had to upgrade the box, with plenty of empty places for breakers. When I need to add an outlet or 2, I add a circuit. When I put in the window AC units, I added a separate circuit for each, with over-spec wiring (12-2 instead of 14-2) on a 15-amp breaker for each. The house is only 60 years old, but it has copper instead of aluminum wiring, so I’m not worried about the wiring. I just won’t take a chance.

    Over-engineer unless there’s a compelling reason to make it trim.

  24. I still get unintelligible phone calls and calls drop out a couple times every week

    That’s the NSA intercepting your calls and monitoring your conversations.

    My experience in the US is that I have had few dropped calls in the last five years. Probably not enough to count on one hand. My experience in Germany was that I had two dropped calls in two weeks. I also suffered from loss of data on the train when traveling between cities. Even spots on the outskirts of Frankfurt were dead data zones.

    I currently use Verizon and I rarely have any issues. Anywhere on the major roads you have a signal. Even fairly remote areas have a signal. I have people with me that are using GSM phones and they may have a signal when I don’t (rare) or they may not have a signal when I do (also rare). The defining difference seems to be data. I always have data whereas the GSM phones do not or have dropped down to edge.

    I wish the US would have one system, CDMA or GSM, I don’t care. And if CDMA have work on all companies instead Verizon phones not being able to work on Sprint (both CDMA) and visa versa. It would be so much easier to just have a single system and I could change providers each month if I desired.

    But no, people wanted subsidized phones so the lazy non-working stiffs could get a phone. After all a phone is their right as according to the talking heads, they need a phone to get a job. They don’t want a job, they just want a phone to do drug deals.

    When my aunt was in the nursing home she had a cell phone (well my mother in-law had it) for free. No monthly costs. Phone was free. 250 minutes a month and 250 text messages. Zero cost to the user. Because she was poor, on welfare (Medicaid) she was entitled to a phone. So we got it and gave it away. Of course those “free” phones were paid for out of the pockets of working men and women.

    The lazy and stupid thought the phones were free and cost no one any money. They don’t seem to realize that the government makes no money and every dollar or freebie they get comes out of the pocket of someone else.

    Of course their kids have brand new iPhones paid for by the parents who have the free cell phones. If you can afford an iPhone, you should not get a free phone. I have heard some talking about their phone bill being $400 a month because of all the data they use. WTF! My phone bill is $100 a month for two phones.

  25. The reunification of Germany was essentially finished by the time I left. Except for East Germany’s lack of English skills on the part of older Germans (not a problem for Millenials in any part of the country), there is no discernible difference between East and West anymore. Especially in the border areas, East Germans moved west for work and West Germans moved east, the latter to take advantage of larger housing for cheaper. Although it is fiction, the movie “Goodbye Lenin” is pretty representative of what happened when the Wall came down. Easterners fled the West instantly; the Westerners came much more slowly as property claims were sorted out in the East before rehabbing was permitted.

    When we arrived in 2001, there was an area where the trains were elevated that ran right along the East/West border. On the West side, development pressed right up to the train line. On the East side was totally–and I mean TOTALLY–vacant land as far as the eye could see. By the time I left, the East side had new development looking just like the West side. And construction dotted the formerly vacant expanse to the east, no longer completely vacant.

    Americans think that Europeans still consider themselves tiny countries. They don’t. Europe is one land. By the time we got there, we ran into many, many, many people from so-called foreign countries — Italy, Spain, Greece, Poland, Czech Republic, — EXACTLY the same as I run into people here from Kentucky (mostly), Iowa, Illinois, Michigan, Texas (yes, quite a few), Missouri, Colorado — just to name a few. Stop thinking Europe is fragile and going to break apart. It ain’t. Younger people especially think of their country as stretching from France to Italy, and move for jobs as easily as Americans change states. Europe has never dealt with Federalism before, and that is what the union of multiple ‘states’ requires. They are learning and will make mistakes along the way. After all, not everybody can be as smart as our framers were.

  26. “They are learning and will make mistakes along the way.”

    Yeah, like the one HUGE mistake (if it was indeed a mistake) they made when they opened the gates to massive swarms of hadji scum, a FSA that dwarfs our own here. So far. This will trump any unicorns and rainbows in the minds of the wunnerful young peeps over there concerning jobs and moving about freely as time goes by.

    “After all, not everybody can be as smart as our framers were.”

    Certainly not the brain trusts in Brussels and Berlin.

    And some of our framers were a little too clever for their own good; Hamilton comes to mind, along with the other Federalists.

  27. Oh, immigration is a big problem anywhere except in this country when we were stomping all over the native inhabitants and needed every hand we could get to help do that job.

    In general, little Turkey in Berlin is a perfect example. A society that has largely isolated itself. There were Turks in my German classes who had been in Berlin for 20 years or more and knew no German whatever.

    Not being selective in immigration policies in developed societies will get’cha in the long run. Just ask South African blacks.

  28. “…in this country when we were stomping all over the native inhabitants and needed every hand we could get to help do that job.”

    They were stomping all over each other before the Europeans got here; but hey, I’m in favor of giving back a lotta territory to them, starting with Maffachufetts, greater NYC and New Jersey, greater DC, Floriduh, large chunks of Texas and other western states, and a huge chunk of Kalifornia.

    “There were Turks in my German classes who had been in Berlin for 20 years or more and knew no German whatever.”

    A pretty good indication that there was, and is, never any intention to assimilate; they’re only there for jobs and bennies; at least our earlier waves of immigrants here made an effort, and by the second generation they were mostly Americans, rather than Italian-Americans or Irish-Americans.

    “Not being selective in immigration policies in developed societies will get’cha in the long run. Just ask South African blacks.”

    I’m not clear on your point here; it wasn’t a developed society until the Dutch and English colonized it. Now that the whites have been shorn of power, mostly, it’s gone back to chaos again; the South African blacks chose the communist ANC and tribal demagogues, and now reap the whirlwind. Most of the other Afrikan countries that kicked out the nasty white Europeans are also in the shit again; civil wars, genocides, cannibalism, etc. Let’s see how they all do under the rule and influence of the Chicoms.

  29. Well, I am not of the persuasion that only white societies are by definition automatically civilized and deserve to take over anything they consider primitive. Cultures may be primitive to some, and they are certainly ripe for takeover by experienced warmongering Nordics — who confined my Lakota Sioux ancestors pretty well. Just because South Africans were colonized and enslaved by white Dutch people, does not mean they needed or deserved that. But it certainly was an opportunity not to be overlooked to the Dutch.

    Read what Noam Chomsky has said about Vietnam — a nation that needed no invading for any reason.

  30. I guess I’d say that it’s mostly white societies that have become civilized over the past couple of thousand years, and mostly Western/European. I also wouldn’t say they “deserve” to take over places and peoples they consider primitive, but they went ahead and did it anyway, and quite a few of those places and peoples became civilized as a result and were the better for it. If they later kicked the Europeans out, they generally and rapidly became the worse for it. Countless examples of that.

    Your Lakota Sioux ancestors and my Algonquian ancestors were pretty experienced warmongering buggers themselves, long before the Norse and other Europeans got over here and this sort of tribal violence has been going on since Cain and Abel all over the world.

    Chomsky on Vietnam; well, besides basically being a tenured commie prof at MIT, he may have focused primarily on the U.S. involvement there, initially an alleged response to SEATO treat “obligations.” The country had been invaded repeatedly by other people long before we got there, including the Chinese, Japanese and French. I was an ignorant youngster and let myself get sucked into Uncle’s military, but in retrospect, we had no justifiable business there, and furthermore not ONE of this country’s nearly countless wars can be justified by the standards of Holy Mother Church or Saint Thomas Aquinas. Which authorities I take more seriously than Noam Chomsky.

  31. I cannot get that worked up over communism. The furor is nothing more than a bad-guy creation of Christians. They gotta have an anti-christ. Communism is an experiment in government, the same as socialism, fascism, Nazism, and capitalism. Leave ’em alone. If it does not work, it will fail eventually. And since proof of a guy named Jesus is wholly lacking, except for some fictional promotional writings called The Bible, getting enraged at communism for the sake of religion is a no-no in my book.

    There is no form of government ever on the planet that some group of people did not detest, and there never will be. The harmony of no-war Krypton is also a myth.

    I’ll take Noam over Frank any day, although I admit I do like Frank’s style.

  32. “Communism is an experiment in government, the same as socialism, fascism, Nazism, and capitalism. Leave ’em alone. If it does not work, it will fail eventually.”

    How many tens or hundreds of millions do they get to kill before their “experiments” actually “fail?” It is a false moral equivalency between murderous systems like communism and Nazism, and “free-market capitalism.” One is worse than the others combined; they’re not all on some equal plain. But we heard this for decades; oh, the Soviet Union and China and Cuba are just different systems, and once they shake out the bugs (break a few eggs to make the omelets) things will be swell. A media celeb visits a Moscow carefully orchestrated for his visit and rejoices, telling his fellow Murkans “I have seen the future and it works!”

    Yeah, Wally, it works great.

  33. ChuckW wrote:

    “Read what Noam Chomsky has said about Vietnam…”

    His writing is some of the most tiresome I’ve ever read. It’s not that I agree or disagree with him, his prose is just badly structured – going on the one book of his that I’ve read.

  34. Chuck W wrote:

    “I cannot get that worked up over communism.”

    Perhaps if you’d been a victim of Stalin’s economic and agricultural policies, or his show trials, or Mao’s Great Leap Forward or Cultural Revolution, or Pol Pot’s Year Zero you might have gotten worked up, before you starved to death or received your bullet in the head.

    “:The furor is nothing more than a bad-guy creation of Christians.”

    Knock it off Chuck, it’s us you’re talking to. You think we’ve had our eyes shut for the last 50-60 years?

  35. Chomsky was considered to have many important insights into linguistics. Many of them have been disproved. Alas for him, his linguistic theories were the only value he had ever added to the species. Without them, his net contribution is less than zero.

  36. I hope before Paul Johnson checks out he’ll do a new edition of his great book “Intellectuals” and include Chomsky this time. Along with such other stars of the Western Left as Betty Freidan, Alfred Kinsey, Susan Sontag, et. al.

  37. Good analogy; yet both of these charlatans are still taught in high skools and colleges, along with the other pseudo-intellectuals described in Johnson’s book on them and the contemporary rumpswabs we all know and don’t love. Let’s fervently hope that a new edition of the book will also include the lethal carny barkers and hucksters of the Frankfurt School, another import from our German friends a while back.

  38. I am not knocking anything off. You all readily charge that Obama has driven the republican democracy train off the rails, but do not blame the political system as at fault. The above is filled with the false connecting of dictators doing the same thing — including killing citizens — to the fundamental and basic tenants of the underlying politics as the cause. Not true there then any more than it is true here and now.

    The tenants of the founders of fascism, socialism, communism, and Nazism do not include killing people to accomplish their political goals. Those were tactics that Stalin, Mussolini, and especially Hitler brought to the table.

    Moreover, how — on the one hand — can one hope for Clinton to be charged with treason while — on the other — dismissing Nixon’s transgressions in the same breath? China is rich today and the US not able to achieve full employment PRIMARILY because of Dick Nixon handing to China on a silver platter our riches and jobs, consequently bankrupting middle-class Americans and seeing to it that they will never again achieve the economic gains they did before Nixon’s dictatorship began.

    If, by some infinitesimal chance, you are right that there are political systems that are truly evil, then unrestrained and unregulated capitalism is working its way to the top of the list. Of course, Americans will die rather than accept there is no exceptionalism for any political system, and certainly none for the American one that has made a great mass of people poorer, not richer, while offering the addictive drug of heavy government dependence to which — in a dying economy — there is no alternative but to become addicted to, while at the same time allowing the disgusting and repeated killing of a dozen unarmed black citizens every year — including children. Great political system you got here. Hitler did not give up until he had taken the country completely down the tubes; looks like the same is in store for the US of A — taken down the path to destruction by an inordinate and undeserved faith that the US political system is the forever best mankind can possibly provide for humanity. I do not buy that. I survive in this country because I go out daily and fight against the institutions our political system has encouraged and allowed where no one will take responsibility for anything, and it takes days to weeks to resolve anything. Never had to fight such battles in Germany. NEVER.

    Finally, except for Nixon and Alan Greenspan, I do not hold the contempt for other humans as often expressed here. As one of my grandfathers taught me at an impressionable age: no one has all the answers, but everyone has a few. That includes Chomsky in my book. Of all the people I have kept track of during my life, only Jude Wanniski and Noam Chomsky’s predictions for the future have been 99.9% accurate in the areas I am following them for (screw linguistics — what do I care about linguistics?). The others are just guessing — as Harry Browne eventually admitted in retrospect regarding his own spectacular advice about gold after Dick Nixon disconnected the economy from the self-regulation imposed by a gold standard. But then, searching for cause and effect seems a pretty low priority in the US of A, so it is not surprising Chomsky would be so condemned. Throwing darts in the dark is not my idea of how to score — although apparently Stevie Wonder does pretty well, as did Ray Charles at billiards.

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