Tues. Jan. 19, 2021 – [insert lyric from a Doors song]

Cool and wet, possibly really wet.  Yesterday was the kind of moist windy day I normally associate with spring.  It had ‘that smell’, but it’s still only January.

January seems to be taking its own sweet time.  Funny how the perception of time can change.  December flew by but January is taking forever.  I’m trying really hard not to invest too much time or mental energy in what’s coming up with the Inauguration.  Hurricane is in the Gulf, just need to get my stuff in one bag… so to speak.  I’m certainly not going to change the events that happen.  On the other hand, I’m reading folks I have been reading for a long time, and they seem oddly detached.  It’s like they’re just in a spectator mode where they can’t look away, yet their own comments reveal that they think momentous changes will be coming.

Folks, you can’t just watch this from a distance if you believe it’s gonna get ugly.  This has the potential to impact you in ways the Clinton and Obamma administrations never did.  People are being un-personed.  They are being driven out of their jobs and their communities.  The new administration hasn’t even taken office yet and they’re already messing things up for ordinary folks.

Take some more steps to help shield yourself from the change that’s coming.

Make every effort to have cash and other resources available.  Food.  Comms.  Alternate income streams.  Water will probably be available, it’s not really a hurricane, but infrastructure interruptions and sabotage are being widely considered and discussed.

As civilizations degrade, lots of things that used to work well stop working very well, and sometimes stop entirely.  We’ve already started down that path.  We are eating out our substance in some real and metaphorical ways.   Public trust has eroded away.  Some people are still cruising on inertia but more and more will become aware of the changes as soon as they bump into them personally.  There’s a lot of stored fat on the body politic, but we’re starting to burn through that and it won’t take too long before we’re eating  up the muscle.

Shortages or outages for products are becoming commonplace.  Supply chain disruption continues.

Roads aren’t being cleared of debris.  Illegal dumping seems to be increasing.  Windows are being boarded up instead of having the glass replaced.   Graffiti and tags are staying in place longer.   Trash is everywhere.  Homeless are showing up in areas they don’t normally frequent, and I’m spotting more sleeping in places that NEVER saw any ‘urban outdoorsmen’ at all.

After years of declining numbers, violent crime is increasing again.

Businesses continue to fail.   I’m seeing vacant storefront and restaurant property everywhere, and Houston is somewhat insulated from the economic problems in the rest of the country.  It’s got to be worse elsewhere.

Preps will help cushion us through this.  Stuff, skills, relationships.  Those and determination and persistence will get us through.

Keep stacking.

nick

[I’m thinking “This is the End”, or “People are Strange”, I don’t want to contemplate how “Crystal Ship” might fit.]

Author: Nick Flandrey

Mid 50s, stay at home dad, with two elementary school age girls. Love my family and my life.

85 thoughts on “Tues. Jan. 19, 2021 – [insert lyric from a Doors song]”

  1. Homeless are showing up in areas they don’t normally frequent, and I’m spotting more sleeping in places that NEVER saw any ‘urban outdoorsmen’ at all.

    How about right in the doorway of the Rio Rio Cantina’s private events dining room’s main entrance on Commerce in San Antonio, across from the Chamber of Commerce?

    We saw that yesterday. A year ago, that scene would have been unimaginable.

    Rio Rio was open for business downstairs.


  2. Except those that are in ground. I thought the water operated ones were available only in Europe, but here is one available here:

    All the new installations here at dealerships and independent shops have been above ground. May be state laws or other codes for which I have no knowledge. Talking with the owners and they really disliked in ground system. I have seen what is necessary to fix an in ground single cylinder lift and it was significant. Lot of measures needed to constrain the oil. Lot of busting up concrete and digging.

    There are hydraulic systems that use non-toxic vegetable oil. The same stuff that is used on fishing vessels to drive the cranes and other mechanism. Maybe that makes the difference.

  3. solarwinds happens and suddenly it’s gone from the news

    it’s almost as if there were coincidences in the universe

    The SolarWinds hack is being blamed on JetBrains behind closed doors.

    Whether true or not, casting aspersions on JetBrains’ alternative integrated development environments certainly works in the favor of Microsoft, which directly or indirectly controls most of the developer mindshare for that kind of tool on Windows and Linux.

    I’ve noted that Visual Studio Code is, increasingly, a Hot Skillz on Linux. At the last job, most of the new hires were clueless about the Unix shell and traditional command line developer tools, even at the Senior level.

    Plus Solar Winds was a C-suite purchasing decision and a lot of careers are at stake.

  4. “Plus Solar Winds was a C-suite purchasing decision and a lot of careers are at stake.”

    –so everyone quietly just fades away? While all those networks are entirely untrustworthy now?

    That sucks because without the pressure and awareness, the resources to replace the compromised systems won’t be made available.

    n

  5. As soon as I figure COVID is maybe less dangerous that TPTB think, well: The UK has done a long-term study of people who were hospitalized with COVID. Turns out that an awful lot of them wind up back in the hospital with organ failure in just a few months.

    We still so much don’t know what we don’t know about this virus.
    The studies captured in the link below are mostly not yet peer-reviewed, but when you consider the breadth of the facilities involved in the research it’s hard to think this is all just so much window dressing.
    https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-00502-w

  6. Media is laying the groundwork:

    1) “New information” shows that lockdowns do not work to contain the spread of virus.

    2) Government agency estimates 460,000 excess deaths in the next 10 years due to lower employment.

    3) After months of nightly reporting positive test results as “cases”, the ultra-sensitive 40-cycles of DNA amplification will finally be dialed back to the 35 that Fauci said in July was more reasonable.

    4) China Joe’s 100-days of masks on federal property will probably be taken up by the blue states, and then on May 1 credited for the normal seasonal reduction in flu rates.

    Whatta plan!


  7. That sucks because without the pressure and awareness, the resources to replace the compromised systems won’t be made available.

    My experiences in 40 years of IT is that at least in financial services (most of my time) once situational awareness is achieved the cleanup can be kept pretty close to the vest.

  8. @drwilliams:

    Does the DVD have additional material?

    They do, though it’s nothing fantastic, from what I remember. It’s been a while since I’ve watched them. I do remember a blooper reel though.

  9. 3) After months of nightly reporting positive test results as “cases”, the ultra-sensitive 40-cycles of DNA amplification will finally be dialed back to the 35 that Fauci said in July was more reasonable.

    That was already done in Florida a few weeks ago by The Worst Governor In History.


  10. defensivetraininggroup.wordpress.com is no longer available.

    This blog has been archived or suspended in accordance with our Terms of Service.
    For more information and to contact us please read this support document.

    –another one

    n

    1
  11. That sucks because without the pressure and awareness, the resources to replace the compromised systems won’t be made available.

    The back door got outside parties onto the organizations’ intranets. What happened after that is largely dependent on traditional security practices.

    Next will come the Microsoft buyout of JetBrains.

  12. That sucks because without the pressure and awareness, the resources to replace the compromised systems won’t be made available.

    The back door got outside parties onto the organizations’ intranets. What happened after that is largely dependent on traditional security practices. From what I understand, SolarWinds just drew pretty pictures concerning network performance for execs so disconnecting the systems isn’t a huge loss.

    SolarWinds stock is toast. SxSW is all virtual again this year which means no executive briefings over shots of Pappy Van Winkle down on 6th Street.

    Next will come the Microsoft buyout of JetBrains.

  13. Sitting in a class where the teacher is at home, using virtual, due to contact tracing.

    This virtual learning is creating an entire year of wasted education. A better solution would have been to just shut down all the schools until the beginning of the fall 2021. The kids cheat, goof off, sleep, listen to music, basically wasting an entire year of resources. The schools are creating an entire group of idiots.

    The kids are too stupid to even charge their Chromebooks at night so they are ready the next day.

  14. This virtual learning is creating an entire year of wasted education. A better solution would have been to just shut down all the schools until the beginning of the fall 2021. The kids cheat, goof off, sleep, listen to music, basically wasting an entire year of resources. The schools are creating an entire group of idiots.

    Too many school bond issues were at stake in November. HOK already drew the plans for the $80 million football stadiums here in Texas.

    If the kids weren’t in school, the parents would have been more inclined to vote ‘no’ on the new bonds.


  15. Speaking of Mr. DeSantis, here’s the latest on the Rebekah Jones story…

    She was ranting this week that the arrest warrant had nothing to do with the supposed hack of the messaging system, that the charge was based on unrelated information found on her devices, and that the charge was invalid because it was outside the scope of the warrant.

    Oops.


  16. This virtual learning is creating an entire year of wasted education.

    It truly is. My son is a high school junior. He has been very critical of the virtual learning. Very little learning, with lots of wasted time in each class. At most, in an 1.5 hour class, the teacher will be active for 45 minutes. Most of the time it is much less.

    Along with everything else this year, our school system was hit with a ransomware attack. It shut our school system down for almost two weeks. This is what happens when you have no physical textbooks.

    Thankfully, this week the high school kids have gone back to full time in class learning (as opposed to half and half onsite and virtual).

    What irks me most, however, is how our school system’s primary concern was dealing with meals. Constant emails going out about meal pickup locations. Constant blowing their own horns about being there to feed the kids. I’m not pro-starving kids, but it’s just sad to see what are schools have degraded to. As others have said, glorified daycare and substitute parents.

    It’s not all doom and gloom, of course. There are exceptions to everything, and some kids put in effort in spite of the additional challenges. I just hope there are enough of them to make a positive change to the future.

  17. She was ranting this week that the arrest warrant had nothing to do with the supposed hack of the messaging system, that the charge was based on unrelated information found on her devices, and that the charge was invalid because it was outside the scope of the warrant.

    Another warrant isn’t a big effort if something incriminating gets found while conducting a legal forensic analysis on an unrelated charge.

    Take anything seen in The Times with a grain of salt. It is possibly one of the most left-wing papers in the US.

    Florida in general doesn’t have a lot of centrist press anymore, especially among the major city dailies. The Sentinel kinda-sorta tried until the parent Tribune company broomed the newsroom with early retirements in 2019 before shuttering the physical building late last year.

  18. Re: homeless people sleeping weird spots / beggars begging.

    Here, I have zero tolerance and zero sympathy. We have very good social programs. If you are in the country legally, you do not need to be homeless – it’s a choice. You do not need to beg, because welfare is enough to cover basic needs. And if you choose to be homeless, and choose to blow your welfare on drugs, there are drug-rehab programs.

    Basel recently found out what it means to be sympathetic: they eliminated the ban on begging. Within a couple of months, the city was filled with beggars who travelled to Basel from Eastern Europe. At least they have had the sense to re-instate the ban.

    If you’re here illegally, and homeless and hungry? You shouldn’t be here. All you have to do is report yourself to the police, and they’ll provide you with a bus ticket home.

    Just today, I saw a young, apparently healthy guy in his 20s. Huddled up, trying to look sad in front of the grocery store. From his accent, he’s one of those who travelled here from Eastern Europe – spoke no German, only accented English. We can’t legally kick him out (gee, thanks, EU), but we have no obligation to support him.

    – – – – –

    Wishing all of you in the US the best of good fortune for tomorrow. I’m fearing the worst, but hoping for the best, for y’all.


  19. If you are in the country legally, you do not need to be homeless

    Same in the US. No one needs to be homeless. My father-in-law ran a rescue mission for a few years. Without exception everyone that showed up chose to be homeless. No cares, no responsibilities, nothing but getting feed and housed. Such activity being quite easily accomplished. To be in public house, on welfare, required a connection to the government with the government telling them what to do and when to do it. Instead they chose to eliminate that from their lives. A couple of the people that showed up had masters degrees in some discipline.

    Some were mental cases and needed help, knew they needed help, but the help offered from the government was not help, just control. These people felt better being on their own without having to deal with the government.

    No one, not a single person, in the US would be hungry or homeless unless they choose. Some will get evicted from their house for failing to pay rent or mortgage. No need to live in a car as their are shelters. To see news stories of some single mother living in her car is just grandstanding. With a little effort she would find a shelter. But doing nothing, no effort, looking sorry on the news, is easier than doing a little effort.


  20. Wishing all of you in the US the best of good fortune for tomorrow. I’m fearing the worst, but hoping for the best, for y’all.

    I think it will be just fine. A few minor protests, but nothing major. I am more worried about 18 months down the road when Biden’s plans start to really affect the economy and restrict freedoms.

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  21. I think it will be just fine. A few minor protests, but nothing major. I am more worried about 18 months down the road when Biden’s plans start to really affect the economy and restrict freedoms.

    Like how Obamacare didn’t really start until 2013.

    Warren Buffett gets paid off tomorrow with the cancellation of the Keystone Pipeline permit.


  22. No one, not a single person, in the US would be hungry or homeless unless they choose.

    Here in the UK, I have volunteered with a Winter Night Shelter for a number of years. There are those who choose the ‘freedom’ of the street, and a few who temporarily experience misfortune and quickly move on, but most ‘rough sleepers’ are drug or alcohol users or suffering from mental illness, often a combination of these. It is a big step for such individuals to make the commitment to change their complex lives, and I do have sympathy for many (e.g. child abuse cases – even though they are now adults) – but try to befriend them and direct them where we can. I believe they can only successfully move on, when they understand that they are the only ones that can effect real change – until then, one is only providing bandaid solutions.

  23. I think it will be just fine. A few minor protests, but nothing major. I am more worried about 18 months down the road when Biden’s plans start to really affect the economy and restrict freedoms.

    Like how Obamacare didn’t really start until 2013.

    Warren Buffett gets paid off tomorrow with the cancellation of the Keystone Pipeline permit.

    The Canadian government is going to sue the USA for several billion dollars if so. The Canadian government guaranteed the loans for the Canadian side which is almost complete.
    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-biden-keystone/canadas-alberta-urges-trudeau-to-press-biden-save-keystone-xl-pipeline-idUSKBN29N1MQ

    Of course, the crude tar sand oil will continue to be shipped into the USA on railroad cars. Buffet’s BNSF railroad will continue to make large bundles of money.

    Psst, keep this quiet. Canada is a hydrocarbon exporting country but they pretend not to be. They get a lot of import cash from their hydrocarbons. Eagle Ford, North / South Dakota, and the Rockies new natural gas wells have killed off their natural gas export to the USA so the tar sand crude oil export to the USA is very important to the Alberta economy.

  24. “US gives the green light to Japan’s $23B F-35 buy”
    https://www.defensenews.com/smr/2020/07/09/us-gives-the-green-light-to-japans-massive-23b-f-35-buy/

    “WASHINGTON — The United States on Thursday approved a planned purchase by Japan of 105 F-35 joint strike fighters, moving the country one step closer to becoming the biggest foreign customer of the Lockheed Martin-produced jet.”

    “The approved package includes 63 F-35A conventional takeoff and landing aircraft and 42 F-35 short takeoff and landing variants, essentially green-lighting the procurement plans spelled out by Japan in 2018.”

    I think I missed this back in July. The F-35s are being bought all over the world. And not for pennies either, serious bucks. That $23 billion is just the down payment, the parts purchase comes next which is another $23 billion to 3X depending if they are serious about keeping the planes flying on a semi-regular basis. And, all the F-35s are made here in Texas in Fort Worth.

    BTW, Japan is still a USA protectorate. And very much enjoys that status with their hungry neighbors to the north (Russia) and west (China) of them.

  25. “New bill would split Washington into two states; creating 51st state called Liberty”

    “Liberty” will never happen. It is like the “Jefferson” dream in SW Oregon/NW California.

    SW WA State has some serious economic problems. Most of the employment along the I-5 corridor south of Tacoma down to the bridge over the Columbia River is government of some form with a few Native American casinos and a Great Wolf Lodge thrown in at major freeway exits.

    Cutting loose Eastern Washington would create a serious revenue problem in Olympia.


  26. From what I understand, SolarWinds just drew pretty pictures concerning network performance for execs…

    Ahh, so they used the good ole ‘PowerPoint to executable code’ compiler!

  27. She was ranting this week that the arrest warrant had nothing to do with the supposed hack of the messaging system, that the charge was based on unrelated information found on her devices, and that the charge was invalid because it was outside the scope of the warrant.

    According to her attorney [Dobson…seems Rudy was busy] her IP address showed up in the Comcast logs because someone broke into her computer…and you know…it was the Russians:
    Dobson said that the case “is just beginning” and he could not speculate on why anyone would attempt to break into Jones’ computer in order to send the message urging people to “speak up” about the coronavirus in Florida.
    “It is important to remember these are allegations,’’ he said. “We all know the Russians hacked the Democratic National Committee…You don’t know with the internet who can access your computer.”

    And then he added:
    “It’s very ironic. They have devoted all these resources to go after her” with an allegation that she broke into a state system to urge people to “tell the truth,’’ he said. “That’s a bad thing in today’s world, isn’t it?”

  28. Water always wins, though it sometimes assumes solid state in order to do so.

    We’ve had above zero temps and rain in Anchorage the last few days, with freezing at night, creating a special kind of aich eee double toothpicks. Rain on snow laden roofs has a tendency to stick as ice instead of running off.

    The short shelter extension I put on the hen house collapsed. No hens were harmed. It’s about 20 sf of roof. Removing the remainder, setting up non hanging food and water isn’t a huge deal. I will prioritize getting what ice I can off the rabbit roof first, while I’ve got daylight. The rabbit roof is stronger, however…

    The hens are disgruntled but ok.

    I think after that my time will be best spent getting shelter for the hens at the new place rather than fixing what we are leaving.

    Annoying but something I can DO something about.

    Made another Costco run last night. It was evident from the volume of people and cart contents we aren’t alone in our concerns. I’ve seen a handful of friends, who voted left, making pointed comments in response to conservatives on various national level news posts. Let the heeling begin indeed. Think your friends won’t turn you in for wrong think? Not so sure about that…

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  29. You know, we may just end up 2021 with about 75 or 80 states.

    Obviously that will necessitate more than nine members on the SCOTUS.

  30. Ahh, so they used the good ole ‘PowerPoint to executable code’ compiler!

    $1 million at Frog Design will get you something that catches exec attention.

  31. Made another Costco run last night. It was evident from the volume of people and cart contents we aren’t alone in our concerns. I’ve seen a handful of friends, who voted left, making pointed comments in response to conservatives on various national level news posts. Let the heeling begin indeed. Think your friends won’t turn you in for wrong think? Not so sure about that…

    It has been 46 ??? years since I read “1984” and the details escape me now. But the owner of our local newspaper made a great synopsis for the new year. I had forgotten that EVERY book and magazine had either been destroyed or rewritten to the new “truth”. One wonders at the level of effort that would require and where they would find the people to make it so. Sadly, they might have an overabundance of job applicants for the Ministry of Truth in these enlightened times.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Winston_Smith

  32. It has been 46 ??? years since I read “1984” and the details escape me now. But the owner of our local newspaper made a great synopsis for the new year. I had forgotten that EVERY book and magazine had either been destroyed or rewritten to the new “truth”. One wonders at the level of effort that would require and where they would find the people to make it so. Sadly, they might have an overabundance of job applicants for the Ministry of Truth in these enlightened times.

    English PhDs have something like a 98% underemployment/unemployment rate, and they already accept a totalitarian regime regulating their employment in the form of the MLA.

    Completely replacing books with new versions wouldn’t be hard in the modern era. Libraries are already homeless shelters, and book distribution is down to a couple of major players, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon. As for e-books, Kindle just sent me an updated version of Neal Stephenson’s last novel, which I wasn’t even aware of until I went to unregister my Windows version of the reader app.

    Newspapers? Who reads those?

  33. Biden will be joined by his wife Jill Biden, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris and her husband Doug Emhoff. Cardinal Wilton Gregory, the archbishop of Washington, will deliver the invocation and gospel singer Yolanda Adams will perform “Hallelujah.”

    Saw the above on CNN. Look at the lyrics to Hallelujah. It is not a religious song.

    The lyrics also allude to the rush of sexual orgasm. The brilliance of Cohen’s poetry and lyrics is that nothing is ever just on thing. This lyrics are open-ended and leave room for multiple interpretations. We can find hints of sexuality in verses such as:

    Well there was a time when you let me know

    what’s really going on below

    but now you never show that to me do you

    But remember when I moved in you

    and the holy dove was moving too

    and every breath we drew was hallelujah

    “Below” could be in reference to his partner’s sexual excitement. But, she seems to have grown cold and holds back her true feelings from him. Perhaps he is saddened because he feels that the relationship hay died. He felt deep intimacy and passion when he made love to her, but that well of intimacy has dried up. The sexual interpretation of Cohen’s “Hallelujah” hinges on lines such as:

    Remember when I moved in you

    and the holy dove was moving too

    and every breath we drew was hallelujah

    And this is what will be sung at a memorial for COVID victims. Just because a song has Hallelujah in the lyrics does not make it a religious song.

    These people are complete idiots.

  34. “Trump nukes the bridge behind him”
    https://gunfreezone.net/trump-nukes-the-bridge-behind-him/

    “”With just one day left in President #Trump’s term, Sec of State Pompeo has officially determined that #China’s campaign of mass internment, forced labor & forced sterilisation of over 1 million Muslim minorities in #Xinjiang constitutes ‘genocide’ / ‘crimes against humanity.'””

    Yup, my thought exactly, a parting gift to Beijing Biden.

  35. Busy lunch. Cleared most of the rabbit roof with a snow shovel and ladder. Carefully creeped under the collapsed hen roof extension and cleared the ice slabs. That was enough to get sweaty. Sweaty + cold is bad so back inside for a bit. Caught the tail end of the president’s farewell address. Took some searching to find it on the tv.

  36. How many Biden strokin’ headlines will CNN have in 72pt font over the next few months?

  37. Saw the above on CNN. Look at the lyrics to Hallelujah. It is not a religious song.

    I always associate it with “The West Wing” and Mark Harmon’s character’s death.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cxX-woxYZ84

    “NCIS” likes to play with the fans who make the same association I do when I hear the song. “The End of Jethro Gibbs”.

    Is Biden pretending he is Martin Sheen’s President on “The West Wing” … or telegraphing that he is about to meet his demise.

    Plugs is no Gibbs.

  38. “If It Bleeds, We Can Kill It ”
    http://raconteurreport.blogspot.com/2021/01/if-it-bleeds-we-can-kill-it.html

    “Then, study “The Troubles” in N. Ireland, 1969-1999 or so.”

    “Britistan built the very model of the Orwellian police state, and fewer than 500 hardcore mainline PIRA Provos ran them ragged for three decades, despite every modern advantage.”

    “And once the other side starts getting kneecapped, and their cars start exploding, it’s not nearly as fun for them to play “tag”.”

    I have to admit that I am concerned about this.

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  39. “Britistan built the very model of the Orwellian police state, and fewer than 500 hardcore mainline PIRA Provos ran them ragged for three decades, despite every modern advantage.”

    The Provos could fundraise with impunity in Boston pubs. The IRA had a lot of sympathy in the US, particularly from liberals.

    Of course, MTV blasting U2 every afternoon to my generation didn’t hurt the cause.

  40. MLA = Modern Language Association ???

    That looks nasty.

    Apparently, they are the racket that controls permanent employment for English PhDs. According to friends, a faculty job isn’t as simple as answering a job posting directly.

    A friend’s husband with an English PhD has never broken out of “adjunct” status. In the same position, I would have become creative a long time ago, but my whole career is, “The word is ‘no’ …”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aCgWzlxnqhc

    I haven’t had a job I’m qualified for on paper since 1993.

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  41. I haven’t had a job I’m qualified for on paper since 1993.

    One thing I learned as I got older was to ignore a lot of the requirements section of job postings. Most of them are bullshit or a pipe dream by managers and peers that think they’ll get away without having to train anyone on their unique collection of third party solutions. I read the description and duties and determine if it’s something I feel I could do. Then, like everyone, bullshit my way through the interview. lol

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  42. Britistan built the very model of the Orwellian police state, and fewer than 500 hardcore mainline PIRA Provos ran them ragged for three decades, despite every modern advantage.

    I might take issue with the “Police State” appellation, but even after 7/7 we in UK never went to the lengths that you USAians did after 9/11. The authorities never treated us as prospective terrorists when we tried to travel.

    I would agree “ran them ragged” if you’re talking about TPTB, but the British public’s reaction was very different from that of the American. We just shrugged our shoulders, and got on with life. Even on and after 7/7. And I could have been involved in that if I’d been travelling 30 minutes earlier.

    I was actually on a Tube train, heading towards Edgware Rd. Station when the bombs went off, shortly after this we were unceremoniously turfed off the train. I was aiming to get across London to a freelance booking, but my booking agent phoned to say, “Cancelled.”

    So I attempted to get home. The Tube was shut down, so I headed to Paddington (even nearer the Edgware Rd. bomb) to catch a bus. Just in time, too. While I was on that bus the entire city went into lockdown. Even the mobile phones weren’t working.

    G.


  43. PIRA Provos ran them ragged for three decades, despite every modern advantage.

    This is what you get when a proportion of the locals are sympathetic to the cause, even if not active. There were undoubtedly injustices, which resulted in almost fanatical non-cooperation with the authorities. Mainly religious-based – the IRA in its various incarnations was Catholic Irish Republican, local government was Protestant, mainly of Scottish extraction, and mostly militantly so.

    As in most such cases, the lines were drawn on a religious basis, and to an extent, still are.

    G.


  44. they are the only ones that can effect real change

    Reminds me of the old joke:
    Q: How many therapists does it take to change a light bulb?
    A: Only one, but the light bulb has to really want to change.

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  45. “Biden Cannot Legally Get Us Back Into the Paris Climate Accords; Here’s Why”
    https://pjmedia.com/news-and-politics/matt-margolis/2021/01/19/biden-cannot-legally-get-us-back-into-the-paris-climate-accords-heres-why-n1393996

    Yup, the USA was never a part of the Paris Climate Accords (a treaty) anyway. Neither Obama or Trump submitted the treaty to the Senate for 2/3rds ratification.

    You know, the USA Constitution is so 1799. All these hard rules !

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  46. Somebody at NIST (government) just sent me a survey to fill out on how Covid-19 has affected my business. Promises only 15 minutes to fill it out.

    Nope, not gonna happen. I plead the 5th amendment. I don’t fill out government surveys without a court order. Not anymore.

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  47. Just because a song has Hallelujah in the lyrics does not make it a religious song.

    There are a lot of sets of lyrics to it. Leonard Cohen, who wrote it, changed the verses on a regular basis, having written over 80 verses as he worked on the song. Some were about King David from the Old Testament. Some were sexual in nature. There have been many covers with altered lyrics.

    You pick a phrase, you pick a rhyme
    repeat the sound another time
    Five iambs, and then an extra beat will do ya.
    Another rhyme, a rising note –
    Congratulations, you just wrote
    Another G-D- verse to Hallelujah.

  48. Newspapers? Who reads those?

    Does anyone still print them??

    I get my local newspaper in the mail three times a week now. They threw it on my driveway until about six months ago.
    https://www.fbherald.com/

  49. I might take issue with the “Police State” appellation, but even after 7/7 we in UK never went to the lengths that you USAians did after 9/11. The authorities never treated us as prospective terrorists when we tried to travel.

    It was different if you lived in NI. My part of town was ok and my only contact with the RUC was when I was in the city centre, or the numerous checkpoints around town. I never had any trouble, but then, I never caused any trouble. I assume, based on my observations, that the RUC and Army had access to computer databases in the 80s that were impressive for the time. They knew who you were before you got to the front of the line at a vehicle checkpoint. Most of the radio communication was unencrypted (80s) but used codes. Listening for a time helped to decode it. Callsigns in my area were ALx. Terrorists were “players”. Communication was made as vague as possible to thwart those who listened in. You might hear something like “Alpha Lima 2 Alpha Lima 6, 2 players heading towards Bravo”. Obviously, predefined locations so as not to give away anything to the players.

    Parts of town were very heavily policed and had frequent violence. I was spared most of that.

    We had to show a drivers license to travel to Scotland on the ferry, and of course to fly. At Heathrow, flights to Belfast left from the gate at the end of the old T1 pier 1, and there were police stationed at the entrance to the area.

    I was amused today as I was driving home thinking about how the TV is calling the people who entered the capitol building on Jan 6th “domestic terrorists”. I’ve seen domestic terrorists and they weren’t.


  50. We just shrugged our shoulders, and got on with life.

    500% true for people in Belfast. You had to just get on with life and ignore the crazy people.


  51. You had to just get on with life and ignore the crazy people.

    That’s my plan, lately.

    There are probably others that should follow this advice.


  52. There are probably others that should follow this advice.

    Very good advice. Back then, if you caused trouble you could end up in non-existent police cells being tortured. There are rumors of such places existing in the USA also. Just not appealing.

  53. Dadgumit, our source code versioning system will not accept my 400 MB AVI file that I created yesterday. The command line tools keep on crashing on me.

    I do so like to version all files required to create our software distribution. We are up to almost 20 GB in our current versioning system with around 20,000 files. Just another reason for us to move to Subversion or Git some day but the move will be a freaking disaster.

    1
  54. We had to show a drivers license to travel to Scotland on the ferry, and of course to fly. At Heathrow, flights to Belfast left from the gate at the end of the old T1 pier 1, and there were police stationed at the entrance to the area.

    Jack Higgins has written about Sean Dillon crossing the Irish Sea in a Beech Baron or such at 100 ft above the sea several times in his most excellent fiction books. One wonders if he ever did it for real.
    https://www.amazon.com/Eye-Storm-Sean-Dillon-Book-ebook/dp/B00132S79A/?tag=ttgnet-20

  55. Our flight into London was delayed by, as the pilot put it, “a bloody mortar attack on Heathrow “. The mortar bombs missed the runways and just tore up some grass so we landed safely. Later that year a bomber accidentally blew himself up on a bus while traveling to plant a bomb in the docklands. As new residents we just ignored this like the rest of London did. The IRA were very good about giving warnings to avoid casualties.

  56. Preparing for tomorrows surgery my wife was asked a long list of questions, one being “are there any guns in the home”. She left that blank, the nurse told her she had to answer every question, my wife said “No I don’t.”. Then they moved on. You can’t intimidate my wife.

    5
  57. I do so like to version all files required to create our software distribution. We are up to almost 20 GB in our current versioning system with around 20,000 files. Just another reason for us to move to Subversion or Git some day but the move will be a freaking disaster.

    Git doesn’t manage large binary files very well.

    Subversion isn’t ideal, but it offers loose locking of local copies and attempts binary diffs.

    Even if Git offered those features, however, the decentralized model means everyone will have a complete replicated repository on their local hard drives.

    You’re going to need a bigger boat. 🙂


  58. The IRA were very good about giving warnings to avoid casualties.

    Not always.

    Also, they had a problem with the bombmaker blowing himself (herself?) up occasionally. Downside of that was nearby innocent people. Other terrorist organizations had similar problems.

    1
  59. I do so like to version all files required to create our software distribution. We are up to almost 20 GB in our current versioning system with around 20,000 files. Just another reason for us to move to Subversion or Git some day but the move will be a freaking disaster.

    Git doesn’t manage large binary files very well.

    Subversion isn’t ideal, but it offers loose locking of local copies and attempts binary diffs.

    Even if Git offered those features, however, the decentralized model means everyone will have a complete replicated repository on their local hard drives.

    You’re going to need a bigger boat.

    Well, that throws Git out. I have two ??? binary files from the 1980s that I cannot recreate. In the path from the Prime 1150 ? to Vax VMS to RS/6000 to PC (DOS), somebody lost the source code for those two binary files and their converter. I tried several times to recreate them but have failed. They are the startup files for our builtin Fortran interpreter and contain byte code. Horrible byte code. And of course they are byte order sensitive.

    We use CVSNT right now (the free version) and everyone has a 20 GB sandbox on their PC. I have four or five sandboxes myself so I can jump back and debug a feature in an old version to see how it once worked.


  60. That question was from the hospital?

    It was a pre-admission questionnaire, I thought it was from her vascular surgeon. In any case, it’s none of their business where we keep our firearms.

  61. the nurse told her she had to answer every question

    “None of your business, you useful idiot” is an answer.

    Or cut that question right off the page.

    Or scribble it out entirely so no question remains.

    Or ask “Who says every question must be answered? By whose authority?”

  62. @Harold Combs
    Several years ago there was a fraction of the medical community that advocated asking patients such questions for “health” reasons. Just an excuse for the gub grabbers.
    Be a lot more relevant for the health of patients if doctors were required to supply their med school transcripts upon request.

  63. @SteveF
    “None of your damned business you useful idiot
    would be my answer.


  64. “None of your damned business you useful idiot”
    would be my answer.

    How about N/A? Not applicable…

  65. Finished taking down 80 or 100 feet of fence. Cleaned up the posts for reuse. Will have to hire someone to put the fence up after I reset the posts near the property line. Also removed a old electric line to the neighbors shed. The circuit is not in use but the wire was fasten to the two pines. Had to dig the nails out as the bark had grown over the wire.

    The pines tress are leaning the wrong way so I’ve called a Tree company to drop them for me. Another delay while it gets scheduled.

    Read three books in the last three days: “A Purple Place for Dying” by John D MacDonald, “Rebels and Lovers” by Linnea Sinclair, and “Out on the Cutting Edge” by Lawrence Block. 838 pages, haven’t watched TV for almost a year.


  66. the nurse told her she had to answer every question

    If the baker can be forced to bake a cake can the surgeon be forced to perform a procedure for someone that refuses to answer a certain question?

  67. Spent the afternoon cleaning and sorting.

    Have I mentioned that I have a lot of stuff?

    Waited until evening to get my grocery run in. Went to our ‘local’ HEB. It wasn’t packed but there were a bunch of empty spots on the shelves, and the staff was ‘facing’ the shelves with just one item in front in a bunch of places too. I think I had the biggest cart, and got some looks, but obvious I was late to the party. Funny thing was it was mostly asian food that was just gone. Could be a problem with a sub contractor I guess….

    No smoking deals on beef today. The big value pack of bacon was all gone. The “combo loco” coolers in the front were empty. They had a good price on 80/20 hamburger, $2.50/lb so I bought 10 pounds. They had chicken quarters for 40c/lb. I bought a 10 pound bag. Net cost is slightly higher after I cut off the ribs, but that is a smoking deal. Got that processed and put in the freezer after dinner. Refreshed the veg, fruit, and dairy. Went a bit heavy on bread and eggs. Went big on canned veg and beans, some portion of which will go to a local food bank if nothing serious breaks loose tomorrow.

    Daughter 1 had her phone confiscated at school today. It’s just an Ipod, not Iphone, but she has wifi at school and was using it. So she won’t have it for some time now. My wife will determine the length since she provided the phone.

    Had another kid test positive at daughter 2’s elementary school.

    No specific plans for tomorrow. Just the usual. Try to keep up with the list…

    n

  68. Third time in an hour that I hit reload and the site couldn’t be found. First time I thought they came for us.

    Anyone else having trouble with reloads/posts?

    n

  69. “Germany Weighs Electricity Rationing Scheme To Stabilize Its Now Shaky Green Power Grid”
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2021/01/19/germany-weighs-electricity-rationing-scheme-to-stabilize-its-now-shaky-green-power-grid/

    “Fast forward to today: The result of all the government meddling is becoming glaringly clear: the country now finds itself on the verge of blackouts due to grid instability, has the highest electricity prices in the world, relies more on imports and is not even close to meeting its emissions targets.”

    “Germany’s rickety and moody power grid now threatens the entire European power grid stability, as we recently witnessed.”

    Is this the future of the USA ?


  70. Third time in an hour that I hit reload and the site couldn’t be found. First time I thought they came for us.
    Anyone else having trouble with reloads/posts?

    No problems here. They are definitely going for You. 🙂


  71. “Germany’s rickety and moody power grid now threatens the entire European power grid stability, as we recently witnessed.”

    Is this the future of the USA ?

    Not really. We are installing more and bigger batteries to do the job starting with the big Tesla battery down in SA (South Australia…).
    I am sure that Elon can sell quite a few around there if they are needed.
    We also started with a project to pump water up with excess energy and to let it go down to generate when it is needed.

  72. Just another reason for us to move to Subversion or Git some day but the move will be a freaking disaster.

    I am very much a fan of Git. And it *does* work with binary files, but since it doesn’t “diff” them, you don’t want to version large binary files that change. Your antique files from the 1980s should be fine, but I wouldn’t put a 400MB video in there. Or in any version control system, come to that.

    Whatever you switch to, just start from “today”. Leave the history in the old system, as an archive. I still have some VSS repositories somewhere on our backups. Haven’t needed them in a decade; likely never will.

    In any case, a big change like that: I would suggest setting up Git in parallel to the current system. Get over the initial learning curve, and see how it works for you. My favorite feature is the fact that you *do* have a full copy of everything, everywhere. Aside from being an extra backup, it means that working offline is always possible. And 20GB isn’t all that much. My development directory for my coursework is around 8GB. Ok, that’s split across a couple of repositories, but it’s still in your ballpark.

    Hallelujah. Leonard Cohen, who wrote it, changed the verses on a regular basis, having written over 80 verses as he worked on the song.

    Somewhere on the Internet – can’t find it just now – is a 3 hour long Hallelujah “sing along”. They made up a zillion of their own verses.

    @ech: exactly 🙂

    Germany Weighs Electricity Rationing Scheme

    Germany got totally carried away with subsidies for solar power. IIRC, it provides 100% of the country’s power, when the sun is shining in the Summer. That’s a lot of capacity going on and off the grid, and that doesn’t do much in the winter. No wonder their network is fragile.

    They’ve also changed the rules for the people who took those subsidies and installed solar panels. Apparently, you no longer get to use the power you generate. Instead, you sell all of your electricity to the grid, and then pay for your full electricity usage at the retail price. I expect the reason is that, otherwise, their grid would be going broke on sunny summer days.

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