Fri. June 7, 2019 – …these are the days of our lives

72F and saturated. Occasional spotty ‘water from the sky’ yesterday late. I could see localized raining and thunderstorms, but our neighborhood just got the occasional spatter of drops.

Anyone else here wish they’d bought gold in the 70s? Just a little every month?

Or start learning a martial art? Or an instrument? If you’d started at the turn of the century, you’d have almost 20 YEARS of practice in. Pretty much anything other than golf or bridge, if you’ve been “doing it for 20 years” you’re probably pretty good at it and certainly an ‘oldtimer’.

Incrementalism can work in our favor too. Get started. There is time left.

These are the ‘good ole days’. Enjoy them, and use the time wisely.

n

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46 Responses to Fri. June 7, 2019 – …these are the days of our lives

  1. Greg Norton says:

    Anyone else here wish they’d bought gold in the 70s? Just a little every month?

    I had ETFs going back to gold being in the low three figures. They were part of what I sold off to fund the Vantucky adventure.

    Any gold I’ve bought since then is in physical form. Beyond the ETF safety issue, the tax paperwork is a pain in the a** for GLD.

    BTW, I take all my gold fishing after purchase. I like to balance the coins on the edge of the boat and admire the sparkle in the sunlight. I’ll be darned if, every time, the coins fall into the lake. Never fails.

    When gold was relatively cheap, one of the young’n’s I worked with at Death Star Telephone couldn’t believe my stories about the $1000/ounce price in the 70s. “What? That’s crazy. Civilization would collpapse and the market would tank”

  2. Greg Norton says:

    Or start learning a martial art? Or an instrument? If you’d started at the turn of the century, you’d have almost 20 YEARS of practice in. Pretty much anything other than golf or bridge, if you’ve been “doing it for 20 years” you’re probably pretty good at it and certainly an ‘oldtimer’.

    10 years ago, I decided that I wanted to see how much academia I could tolerate. I got to the brink of a PhD program and decided that I had seen enough. Time to decide on the next goal.

    I know that five years out, I don’t want to still be junior programmer for management who has senior expections for my performance, even if that means I work at IKEA. My wife and I have a lot of things we’d like to do before we lose our current levels of mobility in the next 20 years.

  3. Harold Combs says:

    Anyone else here wish they’d bought gold in the 70s?

    I started buying gold in the 70s once Nixon made owning it legal again. I remember it started around $40/oz and crept up to around $200/oz when I stopped. Then in 1980 gold spiked over $800/oz and I turned in some of my bullion to take the family for a fabulous Hawaiian vacation. Sadly all my gold & silver, along with the wife’s extensive jewelry collection, were looted in a robbery when we were away about 8 years ago. Police found one of the burglars OD’ed in a motel room with a few of my gold coins left but we lost well over $40k.

  4. Jenny says:

    Thank you, gentlemen, for the kind thoughts and condolences regarding our old dog. They were appreciated.

    I bought $100 of APPL stock in 2000 as a last minute birthday gift from Buy and Hold.

    We have periodically sold a few shares after it had split a few times. We don’t have a ton of shares but the original gift has paid for itself.

    I wish I had been more generous in my original gift -laughter-

    I have been steadily plugging away at the practice chanter as a precursor to bagpipes since 07/2018. As SteveF predicted the instrument is far harder than it appears. My fingers tangle on all the darn embellishment. Most of what I’ve learned in nearly 40 years of playing music is either worthless or detrimental. Bagpipes are feral and while conventional musical notation is used to convey ideas, it is with a rewritten set of rules. Maddening. And irresistible. I’ve been playing the chanter every day for at least a couple minutes for the last few months.

    Similarly, I’ve been grinding away at a college degree one online class at a time with University of the People for about two years. I’ve got five courses to go (I think) for my AS in Computer Science. If I double up here and there I MIGHT finish my BS a year or so after that. Especially if they’ll accept my previous Calculus classes. Regular effort. Roll that boulder up the hill.

    Daily (good) effort yields progress. Regardless of the subject.

  5. lynn says:

    Freefall: human philosophy
    http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff3300/fc03288.htm

    Yup, flying on a spaceship to the outer portions of the star system is going to be incredibly boring. Hopefully there will be no terror portions in there too but, knowing Sam …

  6. lynn says:

    Swan Eaters: curse time !
    https://www.gocomics.com/swan-eaters/2019/06/07

    Is grandma gypsy going to turn the townspeople into swans and eat them ?

  7. JimL says:

    As long as we’re talking about browsers (and ad blockers), Jeff Atwood has something to say.

    https://blog.codinghorror.com/an-exercise-program-for-the-fat-web/

  8. lynn says:

    Anyone else here wish they’d bought gold in the 70s? Just a little every month?

    Nope, I am not a gold bug. I am kicking myself for not buying Amazon stock all these years as I was buying thousands of dollars of stuff from them. I only own 35 shares.

    I did buy some Netflix stock back at $6, sold it at $46, rebought it at $65 and still own a couple of hundred shares at $360. Now I am wondering if this is time to sell it as their Disney / Marvel / Star Wars content goes away ?
    https://www.whats-on-netflix.com/leaving-soon/disney-movies-leaving-netflix-in-2019-2020/

  9. lynn says:

    “Mexico Claims Some Migrant Caravan Funding Came from U.S., England”
    https://www.breitbart.com/border/2019/06/06/mexico-claims-some-funding-for-migrant-caravans-came-from-u-s-and-england/

    “Mexican tax officials froze the assets of 26 individuals and entities they allege are tied to human smuggling organizations or to promoting Central American migrant caravans. The caravans moved thousands of individuals from the “northern triangle” through Mexico to the U.S. border. The funding for the migrant caravans allegedly came from the U.S., England, Africa, and Central America.”

    I am shocked, shocked I tell you. (hat tip to Jerry Pournelle)

    Looks like Trump’s tariff threats to Mexico are getting some results. Are they enough ?

    Hat tip to:
    https://drudgereport.com/

  10. lynn says:

    From @brad yesterday:

    Fred’s latest column is a decent read. The video of the Asian girl: notice the composition of the board. The girl has no chance against the racism inherent in US blacks.
    http://www.unz.com/freed/stuyvesant-high-versus-china-rail/

    The best line in the whole article: “There exists not the slightest chance of finding so many qualified minorities. If they existed, it would not be necessary to lower standards to recruit them.” This is simple truth, which is completely non-PC to admit or discuss.

    I wonder if Fred has watched the movie “Idiocracy” ? Highly recommended.
    https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0387808/
    and
    https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/idiocracy

  11. Greg Norton says:

    I am shocked, shocked I tell you. (hat tip to Jerry Pournelle)

    Looks like Trump’s tariff threats to Mexico are getting some results. Are they enough?

    Taxing the remittances sent home to Mexico would wake up their government real fast, but that would be a problem for Trump since WalMart has a huge chunk of that business.

    If the remittances are sent in the form of a WalMart gift card, the transfer fee is waived — a much better deal than Western Union.

  12. Greg Norton says:

    The best line in the whole article: “There exists not the slightest chance of finding so many qualified minorities. If they existed, it would not be necessary to lower standards to recruit them.” This is simple truth, which is completely non-PC to admit or discuss.

    My wife’s African American friend from high school graduated from college with a 2 point something GPA in English. She is currently employed as a “Scrum Master” at a major defense contractor as part of an Agile push and wonders why the (mostly white male) programmers dislike her.

  13. JimL says:

    Polishing turds.

  14. lynn says:

    As long as we’re talking about browsers (and ad blockers), Jeff Atwood has something to say.

    https://blog.codinghorror.com/an-exercise-program-for-the-fat-web/

    “So it’s all the more surprising to learn that Google is suddenly clamping down hard on adblockers in Chrome. Here’s what the author of uBlock Origin, an ad blocking plugin for Chrome, has to say about today’s announcement:”

    So Google has definitely crossed over to the evil side now.

    Note: I run Ublock Origin on all of my machines now, except the smartypants phone. Ublock Origin IS NOT Ublock which has been forked by somebody else apparently.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UBlock_Origin

  15. lynn says:

    Polishing turds.

    Sorry but I am confused ? BTW, I have never tried to polish a turd. Nor have I tried to pick up a turd by the clean end (and I have picked up MANY dog turds). I highly recommend these dog turd bags:
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0195Q3YUW/

  16. mediumwave says:

    Polishing turds.

    Mythbusters Polishing a Turd

  17. mediumwave says:

    My wife’s African American friend from high school graduated from college with a 2 point something GPA in English. She is currently employed as a “Scrum Master” at a major defense contractor as part of an Agile push and wonders why the (mostly white male) programmers dislike her.

    Sounds like the Peter principle in action, except that she was promoted more than one level beyond her competence.

  18. lynn says:

    My wife’s African American friend from high school graduated from college with a 2 point something GPA in English. She is currently employed as a “Scrum Master” at a major defense contractor as part of an Agile push and wonders why the (mostly white male) programmers dislike her.

    Let me guess, programming the 737 MAX MCAS system at Boeing ?

  19. JimL says:

    Polishing Turds – promoting people beyond their capacity and expecting them to shine.

    See also: post turtle.

  20. lynn says:

    Polishing Turds – promoting people beyond their capacity and expecting them to shine.

    Gotcha ! I feel like that some days.

  21. lynn says:

    We are “trying out” an 8 week old puppy from the city shelter in Sugar Land for the weekend. She is a cutie mix of maybe miniature schnauzer and maybe dachshund (really hard to tell). She is about 12 lbs now and does not bark. Nor does she bite your fingers like normal teething puppies do. She has been spayed already and had her shots. She went with us on our one mile walk last night (the dogs in our family have got to earn their keep) but we carried her most of the way. We are still working out how to introduce her to the 12 lb Siamese male cat. If things work out, we will keep her.

  22. paul says:

    We are still working out how to introduce her to the 12 lb Siamese male cat. If things work out, we will keep her.

    Sweet!

    Er, if she’s not teething I think they fudged her age a month or two. Pictures!

  23. paul says:

    It’s a beautiful day outside. Clear and sunny with a few fluffy clouds giving shade once in a while.

    It just hit 94F. The humidity is low enough that you don’t drip sweat three minutes after going outside. So, warm but not bad. Perfect for having a pool. The attic is at 90F. The t-stat in the living room -just- went to saying it is 78.

    The a/c has not run at all today.

  24. mediumwave says:

    See also: post turtle.

    Post Turtle

    Yep.

  25. DadCooks says:

    @lynn, I hope your new puppy works out. Patience.

    I would conjecture that she is more than 8 weeks, seeing that she is already 12 pounds and not showing teething habits. No big deal. Shelters and Rescues are notorious at saying an animal is younger than they really are. I would trust the judgment of your Veterinarian. She has probably been caged for most of her life so it will take a bit of a “training regimen” to work her up to the mile walks.

    Enjoy and best wishes.

  26. Nick Flandrey says:

    107F in my driveway. with 43%RH. This morning was beautiful, with warm air, but cool breeze in the shade. Great time to watch the kids swim.

    Thanks for the article and link to Pi-hole. I might have to do that. Using the wife’s pc or the kids tablets is painful. I wonder how it does on youtube ads? My current AB+ kills them completely, but the kids watching from the TiVo still see ads.

    Anyway, nice day out, and tonight is movie night at the pool. Dive In theatre! It should be a great night for it, but I’m coming down with a cold and the wife’s still getting over one.

    n

  27. Greg Norton says:

    Let me guess, programming the 737 MAX MCAS system at Boeing ?

    Not Boeing.

    The 737 MAX problem goes way beyond software.

  28. mediumwave says:

    She went with us on our one mile walk last night (the dogs in our family have got to earn their keep) but we carried her most of the way.

    Hopefully, you still have Lady’s “sag wagon.”

  29. Nick Flandrey says:

    Another “win” for the FBI *cough* cheaters *cough*….


    During months of conversations with an undercover FBI agent
    , Alam expressed support for the September 11 attacks in New York, as well as the militant group Islamic State, according to a court documents.

    –snip–

    He allegedly started conducting research about firearms online and discussed purchasing firearms with the undercover agent.

    Alam told the agent in March that he was interested in buying a Glock 9mm pistol, according to the complaint. The agent then introduced Alam to an ‘associate’, who was also an agent, who offered to help Alam get the two illegal firearms. “

    Months of effort on the part of multiple agents to finally talk this sap into action. I guess it’s cheaper and easier than finding the existing terrorists…

    Also, anyone out there still think it would be impossible to program some sap to execute a ‘false flag’ attack?

    n

  30. Nick Flandrey says:

    Just when you think you are prepped up…..

    “‘Extinct’ Russian volcano stirs for the first time in human history and could unleash ‘catastrophic’ devastation similar to the eruption of Vesuvius which destroyed Pompeii in 79AD

    Bolshaya Udina is a 9,580 feet tall volcano located on the eastern side of Russia
    It is not known when it last erupted and the volcano had been thought extinct
    However experts have detected seismic disturbances underneath the volcano
    Researcher warn an eruption could throw colossal amounts of ash into the air

    By Ian Randall For Mailonline

    Published: 13:05 EDT, 6 June 2019 | Updated: 13:07 EDT, 6 June 2019

    A Russian volcano long thought to be extinct may be waking up for the first time in human history and could erupt in a similar way to the catastrophic Vesuvius event which decimated the ancient city of Pompeii. “

  31. Greg Norton says:

    Also, anyone out there still think it would be impossible to program some sap to execute a ‘false flag’ attack?

    No. And, as the “Russiagate” scandal demonstrates, way too much of the intelligence community is not under Trump’s control.

    I don’t think it would happen right now, however, because people are tired of the MacDill perverts’ “wars”, and the Dem 2020 field is wide open, including a few people who really would go after the Pentagon if for no other reason than finding more money for the Prog agenda.

  32. lynn says:

    She went with us on our one mile walk last night (the dogs in our family have got to earn their keep) but we carried her most of the way.

    Hopefully, you still have Lady’s “sag wagon.”

    Yup, I almost took it last night. Will probably take it tonight. She is a little heater.

  33. Nick Flandrey says:

    Anyone here who is responsible for defending networks against ransomware attacks that is NOT getting FBI flash notifications might want to check out this pdf notice. It’s marked “freely distributable but not thru publicly accessible channels.” So I’m providing the direct link and not actually distributing it. It has details of robbinhood including hashes.

    https://content.govdelivery.com/attachments/USDHSCIKR/2019/06/06/file_attachments/1225591/FBI%20FLASH%20-%20RobbinHood%20Ransomware.pdf

    let me know if it doesn’t D/L without my id tag in the URL….

    n

  34. Greg Norton says:

    So I’m providing the direct link and not actually distributing it. It has details of robbinhood including hashes.

    I was able to grab it.

    They forgot “Don’t surf pr0n with your work computer.”

  35. lynn says:

    @lynn, I hope your new puppy works out. Patience.

    I would conjecture that she is more than 8 weeks, seeing that she is already 12 pounds and not showing teething habits. No big deal. Shelters and Rescues are notorious at saying an animal is younger than they really are. I would trust the judgment of your Veterinarian. She has probably been caged for most of her life so it will take a bit of a “training regimen” to work her up to the mile walks.

    Enjoy and best wishes.

    Oh, she is chewing her three chew toys with vigor. Just not my fingers which I found amazing as the milk teeth are very sharp to me. And I am probably high on her weight, especially after carrying her 3/4 of mile last night. Her real walking problem is that she wants to stop and smell all of the interesting “stuff”, and the eight preteen boys walking around our neighborhood at midnight last night. We got to see them twice as we were counterclockwise and they were clockwise, and of course, they were calling to her. They were all in swim suits and returning home in theory for a big sleepover (lucky parents ! Not !), just doing an extra loop around the ‘hood for posterity. School is out so slow down !

    She is also well potty trained and regards the grass as a good place to pee and poop. The poor cat thinks that he got replaced so did not come in this morning after the dawn patrol. I found him hiding in the garage and brought him in, I must admit I am not a fan of the new claw holes in my tshirt.

  36. lynn says:

    “A Mythical Form of Space Propulsion Finally Gets a Real Test”
    https://www.wired.com/story/a-mythical-form-of-space-propulsion-finally-gets-a-real-test/

    One wishes that it had worked but, oh well. Another hat tip to Jerry Pournelle.

  37. lynn says:

    “NSA Wants Windows 7, XP Users to Update ASAP”
    https://www.laptopmag.com/articles/nsa-update-windows-bluekeep

    “The National Security Agency (NSA) wants users to update their Windows 7 or XP computers because of a critical security vulnerability capable of inflicting devastating damage.”

    “The vulnerability, called BlueKeep, was discovered a few weeks ago in older versions of Windows, including Windows 7, Vista, XP and Server 2008.”

    “The flaw is so serious that Microsoft was quickly released patches for Windows XP, an operating system the software giant stopped supporting five years ago, as well as Windows 7 and Server 2008 (Vista got nothing, however.)”

    I have trust issues with the NSA.

    Original NSA story:
    https://www.nsa.gov/News-Features/News-Stories/Article-View/Article/1865726/nsa-cybersecurity-advisory-patch-remote-desktop-services-on-legacy-versions-of/

  38. Greg Norton says:

    I have trust issues with the NSA.

    They have their limits. For now, I don’t believe they have AES256 cracked, no matter how fast the bad guys hard drives get decrypted by Bishop’s laptop on “NCIS”. Of course, there are other ways into a VPN or other secure traffic. Cisco AnyConnect and the “SSL VPN” protocols like it were a Godsend to them and other state-level actors who have certificate signing keys from the major vendors.

    They’re not all the “best and brightest”. One girl from my EE graduating class went to work there on a pure quota hire deal — grades ~ 2.7 GPA IIRC. Blame/thank typical Feds, and an “underrepresented” demographic in STEM. She probably reads my email. Maybe even this.

    Hi [Name omitted]!

    Don’t need a cavity search tonight.

  39. Nick Flandrey says:

    Don’t need a cavity search tonight.”

    –hey, it’s Friday night! Come on, that sounds like a party …

    n

  40. mediumwave says:

    @Lynn: If your new pooch doesn’t make the cut, you might consider this:

    Boston Dynamics’ cool-yet-terrifying commercial robot Spot is about to go on sale

    🙂

  41. mediumwave says:

    They’re not all the “best and brightest”. One girl from my EE graduating class went to work there on a pure quota hire deal — grades ~ 2.7 GPA IIRC. Blame/thank typical Feds, and an “underrepresented” demographic in STEM.

    Just Deserts:

    Right now, in everything but the hard sciences and STEM (and they’ve gotten into some of those, and can’t always be routed around.) the people in power would consider pouring piss out of a boot with the instructions written on the sole a feat of unachievable genius.

  42. Lynn says:

    The new pooch went to sleep in my lap tonight while watching the Astros. That was after she walked over half of the mile walk tonight. She does not like the sag wagon and jumped out twice. The wife thinks that she is 4 months old and 10 lbs.

  43. brad says:

    @mediumwave: Thanks for the link to Sarah Hoyt’s latest column. I occasionally read her blog, but geez, I wish she would edit her blog posts. She could cook them down to 1/4 of their length, and make her points much more effectively.

    We had a fire in the fireplace last night. In June. I think that’s a first for us. Masses of snow in the mountains – I hear it’s the same in North America. But the AGW hysteria continues apace – despite having failed to make essentially any correct predictions for decades.

  44. Nick Flandrey says:

    @brad, there’s always a reason why your religious prophesy didn’t come true, and so it is with AGW believers.

    The left in general seems to be magic/fantasy/religion based belief systems. They’ve made a sacrament out of killing babies. They believe in the power of incantation and talisman – signs have power, and repeating words changes the world. They are quick to cast out a heretic or stone a transgressor. They will not tolerate challenges to their beliefs, instead attacking the challenger. And as with any fanatics, there are some for whom no one will ever be ‘pure’ enough.

    That’s why compromise and debate will not work. This is a religious experience, and only a conversion experience will change them. (they can ‘lapse’ but they will always have those beliefs as their bedrock.)

    n

  45. DadCooks says:

    @Lynn, it looks like you have a keeper, and the cat will get over it (but he will never tell you that).

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