Thur. July 8, 2021 – flyin’ by…

Hot and humid, chance of rain. Might be sunny. Yadda yadda. Well, yesterday started cool, got hotter, got sunnier, and then ended hot and sticky. Lots of mosquitos in the yard too.

We are working on housebreaking the new puppy, which means sitting outside while he sniffs the entire yard looking for the perfect spot to NOT do his business, until we give up and let him back in the house. Then within a minute, he’ll have soiled something… so I’m getting reacquainted with sitting in the sun in the yard, swatting bugs. Joy.

Spent the day mostly not getting stuff done. I did get pickups done at two different auctions. One was half household stuff, the other half stuff for my non-prepping hobby, the other was all household. Got a tiny little dog life jacket for the new little guy. Fits him, and is even a bit big. He doesn’t like it at all, but if we ever find some lake property, we’ll need it. Got some pink safety glasses for the girls in my wife’s troops. If they’re gonna do woodworking with saws, hammers, and screwguns, they need safety gear. Got some small sized gloves for them too.

I did not get daughter two signed up for a day at the rock climbing gym today, but will get her in for tomorrow. She likes the gym and they had lots of day camps there the summer before wuflu. I will try to send the puppy to day care too. That should break me loose to actually do some work. And I REALLY need to get some auction stuff ready.

———————————————————————

Meanwhile, I think I’m starting to see the shape of the rest of the summer. The Dems in DC are establishing offices in other states for the DC police. Federal police force expansion cued up in 3, 2, 1 …

Chicago will ask for fedgov police or troops as the murders and lawlessness continue to get worse. They already have gangbangers trying to kill each other in the street with ARs firing 3 rnd bursts from 100 rnd Beta mags in broad daylight. I watched the video with my own eyes. Cops are saying “F this noise” and leaving or retiring on the job.

If Chicago falls, NYFC will be the next to ask for help. Cops in NYC are doing the same thing as cops in Chicago and elsewhere. Ie, leaving.

Whoever DC sends will just be more targets for the ‘bangers and revolutionaries who are already targeting cops (at least 3 that I can think of off the top of my head before the triple shooting in Chicago this week.)

NYC and Chicago are already blaming legal gun owners, and the gun manufacturers for the “gun” violence. The word they should be using starts with a “g” but rhymes with “bang”, and not “fun”. They’ll try to crack down even harder on the people who traditionally have just shut up and taken it. Only I don’t think they will this time.

Which should lead to even more sportiness, which the pro agitators will be sure to take advantage of. Their cadre has been blooded now, cycled away from the ‘front’ to share their experiences, and to gear up for the next wave. They haven’t gone home to tend their gardens and make war no more. They’re waiting, organizing, and equipping for the next skirmish.

Then there is the question of outside interference. Some people are concerned that China has used the foreign exchange student programs to pre-position tens of thousands of troops here already. We have a failed narco state to our south, that can move drugs, people, and guns over our border with impunity. THEIR fifth columnists are fully emplaced, dispersed to every city and town in the US, ready to provide an organized force either directly or as harassers. They are savage and have an ideological framework based on the Reconquista, and La Raza movements. If and when they are unleashed, the streets will run with blood and cities will burn.

There are many forces at work, they sense the weakness. Some of them have worked to create the weakness for decades. They’re looking at the fat, bloated, drug- addled Elvis, and they’re ready to kill the King and divide up the kingdom. My only hope is that we’ve been getting ready too, and no matter how much family fights, they all turn on the outsider.

The economy isn’t going to survive something like that. Personal violence is going to go through the roof. The economic engine of the world will stop, and then the whole world is in a world of hurt.

The elephants are dancing. I hope all the mice have a nice little bolt hole ready to hide in. If they don’t, what’s stopping you? Get to stacking.

nick

Author: Nick Flandrey

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

80 thoughts on “Thur. July 8, 2021 – flyin’ by…”

  1. Concerns about 5G causing cancer are overblown, to say the least. There’s no evidence of this, so far as I know.

    What people should be concerned about is 5G turning the frogs gay.

    3
    2
  2. “a cloud based trajectory”

    It’s still Somebody Else’s Computer™

    “The Cloud” and the associated Hot Skillz are another “dude” thing I’m told I don’t understand. Developers of my generation don’t want to get left behind like we watched happen to the COBOL developers at places like GTE in the 90s. Millennials don’t want to end up like X-ers, excluded from training on OO development and the web technology. All the fear means not a lot of work actually gets done right now, especially with the “working” from home.

    I’m not thrilled with the direction change at the current employer, but not being a “dude” was ultimately behind why I was terminated from the last job. I just cash the paychecks at the new place as long as no one yells, but I am getting concerned at the increasing impatience of management that I tend to speak using more than one sentence.


  3. What people should be concerned about is 5G turning the frogs gay.

    Didnt you mean to say progs?

    1
    2
    5
    1
  4. Some people are concerned that China has used the foreign exchange student programs to pre-position tens of thousands of troops here already. 

    We had two of the Chinese PhD grads at the last job. They might be here to steal tech, but neither the individuals we hired or roughly half dozen grad students we talked to doing interviews (that includes the hired developers) gave “military” vibes.

    One of the two hired left right after I was fired, going to work for Nvidia in Austin. Whether or not he was in the country “on assignment”, my dissatisfaction at carrying Wally made him question his own situation in the organization, carrying a lead who was Wally Wannabe — not exactly suck it up and soldier on, but maybe their army doesn’t work that way.

    The American mid-tier state schools have been complicit in whatever is going on since foreign tuition dollars are at stake.

    4
    1
  5. They might be here to steal tech, but neither the individuals we hired or roughly half dozen grad students we talked to doing interviews (that includes the hired developers) gave “military” vibes.

    They don’t have to be military. If they have family back in China, the government there has a lever on them. “Don’t cooperate and your family has their social credit score reduced. They lose their nice jobs, lose their nice apartment, can’t use the fast trains ….”

    A FB friend has a company that sells small furniture and other stuff made in Taiwan and China. He says that EVERY mainland factory has some connection to the government. Small shops have a local official that drops by and needs to be paid. Larger factories have party cells of workers and maybe a couple of full-time party officials onsite. Any idea that they are not supervised by the party is nonsense.

    2
    1
  6. The cloud is amazing, and I’m all for using it. Using a VM on AWS to run a website, which I did for years – marvelous stuff, cheap, scalable, and they can worry about all the ugly details. Of course, you still have to know what you’re doing – how to secure your system, etc.. That’s no different.

    But: it’s all about the data. How many companies put their data in the cloud, and never think to have their own, local backups? The customer data on our websites was sucked down to local storage daily. And for ordinary data storage, companies need to run their own cloud storage. It’s easy enough, there’s really no excuse not to.

    2
    1

  7. -nope. ATT is a common carrier. Your local internet provider is a common carrier. They are protected from liability for the content they “carry” from one place to another.

    As soon as the Googles lose their protection, the plugs administration will expand the FCC to do *monitoring* for them. Just like the IRS targeting conservative non-profits.

    2
  8. The cloud is amazing, and I’m all for using it. Using a VM on AWS to run a website, which I did for years – marvelous stuff, cheap, scalable, and they can worry about all the ugly details. Of course, you still have to know what you’re doing – how to secure your system, etc.. That’s no different.

    The Cloud isn’t appropriate for every software deployment situation, but, right now, every developer looking at keeping a career going for at least another decade is worried about losing out on the Hot Skillz learning opportunity so they go along when management becomes fascinated with the short term cost savings possibilities.

     


  9. Here come the PRCs (public residential complexes). I’ll bet that they get registered to vote too.

    Time to get my financial advisor to invest in soybean growers. The first PRC’s will be deluxe apartments in the sky. This is to draw *citizens* to want to live in them. New construction will have plenty of sand and oatmeal added to the concrete. The new PRCs will self destruct in 10 years taking the residents with them. It’s a win-win for the ProgLibTurds. In ten years, illegals will live in our houses and we will live in the PRC retirement communities. PLTs get lifetime Dumbocrat voters and get rid of us WHITEY!, cishetero, Bible clinging, flag hugging, Neanderthals.

  10. He is running nothing at this point.

    Isn’t that good?

    If the midterms swing big, hopefully we will return to gridlock.

  11. …oatmeal added to the concrete.

    Yum! Crunchy!! Civil engineers teamed with bakers – what could go wrong?

    2
  12. plugs is one sick fcuk. Our enemies are laughing their asses off at us. There is no way plugs can last four years. He is sick. He is running nothing at this point. 

    Kamala Harris has been a public embarrassment since being ensconced at One Observatory Circle, far more than the cabal anticipated. If Biden isn’t gone before Thanksgiving, he’s not going anywhere until after the midterms.

    Even if Harris was competent, the calculus for the replacement VP deal gets more complicated by the day, with potential Dem defections now possible, offsetting whatever Mittens does.

    (Though, at this point, I think the Elders would find an empty VP chair and the very remote possibility of President Pelosi for 15 months a lot more palatable than anyone on the short list for the Senate confirmation.)

    2
    1
  13. Wouldn’t adding oatmeal to the concrete mix make it stronger? Have you ever tried to scrub dried oatmeal off of a bowl when your kid didn’t finish her breakfast? It practically takes air tools and sandblasting.

    3
    1
  14. 80F and raining. Not getting the patio or driveway worked on today.

    WRT Kamel, she’s never actually DONE anything, except laugh at the little people and peddle her a$$ets to the boss. Since her current boss’s (well nominal boss) tastes don’t run that way, she’s reached the end of her wits. They keep assigning her things to do, she’s czar of what, 20? different issues now? and she can’t even pretend to work, since she never learned how.

    Speaking of her nominal boss, what sort of adult man, talking to his adult son, says “mommy” when referring to his wife about something as serious as inherited disease?

    n

    2
    1
    4
    1
  15. It practically takes air tools and sandblasting.

    –you could fight fire with fire, and leverage the mouth shredding razor sharpness of Cap’n Crunch some how. That stuff is like eating a bowl of windshield glass…

    n

    1

  16. If Chicago falls, NYFC will be the next to ask for help. Cops in NYC are doing the same thing as cops in Chicago and elsewhere. Ie, leaving.

    The next mayor of NYFC (Eric Adams) is a 20 year NYPD ex-cop. He will have plenty of crony jobs at City Hall to fill for his buddies as they quit the force and nothing is done to quell the violence.

  17. The first PRC’s will be deluxe apartments in the sky. This is to draw *citizens* to want to live in them. New construction will have plenty of sand and oatmeal added to the concrete. The new PRCs will self destruct in 10 years taking the residents with them. 

    Back at the peak of the Bubble in Florida in the mid-2000s, the public housing built in Tampa to replace the complexes lost in the expansion of I-275 through West Tampa and Seminole Heights was generally better quality than the stucco shacks being sold for $500k in deed restricted gated communities out in the exurbs. And that was before the Hecho en China drywall scandal hit.

    The public housing used drywall from the Tampa gypsum board plant until the yuppies living in the suburbs campaigned to have the facility closed as an “eyesore” at the edge of the city’s entertainment district.

  18. Open office bullpens and cubical farms suck. I don’t see how any one creating things gets any work done in these.

    If you’ve ever priced out new cubicles they’re certainly not cheap. I’d have to imagine a few 2×4 and sheetrock walls are cheaper.

    I think they were originally popularized for flexibility, but I think history has shown that for most employers once the cubicles are installed they are rarely (if ever) moved. I always assumed some of it was a control thing. Typically, your monitor faces the entrance to the cubicle. So, manager types can wander around and keep and eye on what work is getting done. That, and your peers can be judgy about what you’re doing.

    you could fight fire with fire, and leverage the mouth shredding razor sharpness of Cap’n Crunch some how. That stuff is like eating a bowl of windshield glass…

    I second this. The roof of my mouth is always raw after eating that cereal.

    Speaking of cereal, I found this amusing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iy-Z6S7cFJc

    The Cloud isn’t appropriate for every software deployment situation, but, right now, every developer looking at keeping a career going for at least another decade is worried about losing out on the Hot Skillz learning opportunity so they go along when management becomes fascinated with the short term cost savings possibilities.

    Two words that make me instantly roll my eyes when I hear them at work: cloud and agile.

  19. Two words that make me instantly roll my eyes when I hear them at work: cloud and agile.

    Agile. My wife’s friend who pulled an early 90s GRE score V+Q of 600, correlating to an IQ of 80, currently holds a highly-paid quota filling job as “scrum master” at one of the big defense contractors. She honestly wonders why the engineers and software developers hate spending time with her.

    Agile is a Hot Skillz, but only a narrow group of managers got the training from the “right” consultants 10-15 years ago so, in practice, every company seems to do it differently.

    At least “pair programming”, which seemed to appear at the same time as Agile, seems to have fallen out of favor.

  20. Even the guy who invented the cubicle hates what they’ve done to the workplace. Keep in mind, they were an IMPROVEMENT in privacy and working conditions. The old days had rows of desks aligned to the front of the room, just like a classroom (no coincidence there).

    In fact if you watch Absence of Malice, I believe the newsroom is still set up the old way. There are plenty of old movies that show the typical office environment. Monty Python took a shot at it in the short film before Meaning Of Life.

    n

  21. in practice, every company seems to do it differently

    –because it was a nebulous collection of buzzwords and vague concepts from the beginning?

    I’ve done a lot of sitting in the seat and monkey hammering GUIs to break them, and my best experiences are with single programmers, who are very narrowly focused, working with tools and problems they understand completely.

    The team software never work right anywhere but their computers in their lab with their test hardware.

    n

    2
  22. I’ve done a lot of sitting in the seat and monkey hammering GUIs to break them, and my best experiences are with single programmers, who are very narrowly focused, working with tools and problems they understand completely.

    American management generally can’t handle the single personality anymore, especially if they aren’t “dudes”.

    Even women managers prefer “dudes” because they can #MeToo their a**es if too much pushback happens over a disagreement on a technical issue or schedule.

  23. re agile development, it was not a nebulous collection of ideas and buzzwords. Not as originally put together and put into practice. It became fuzzy ideas and buzzwords when governments and big corporations latched on to it, because there was money to be made and each vendor had to put its unique spin on it.

    Thing is, agile development never had a chance of succeeding beyond a few teams in ideal environments. The foundational aspect of an agile team is autonomy: it can decide what to work on, how much can be done in a timeboxed sprint, and what resources it needs. Within the team, all members are peers; some will be more experienced than others but all get a say in determining priorities and in taking tasks.

    I’ve never seen agile done right, looking at it from that perspective. Very few managers are willing to give real power to the programmers or engineers doing the work. And I’ve always seen the agile team template overlaid upon a team lead/bunch of lumpens traditional group, with a scrum master tacked on. And on top of that, the “ceremonies” are never supposed to get in the way of getting the work done but they always do, because of the need — “need” — to arrange meetings around the schedules of a number of managers or other people outside of the team.

    1
  24. Agile – hey, it works great, if you have a good team. Of course, if you have a good team (including a decent technical manager to keep the suits at bay), just about any process will work equally well.

    Pure waterfall, of course, is – and always has been – dumb, except for small projects. Even back in the 80s, good teams produced intermediate iterations, if only for internal review.

    The real issue is different: too much software needs written, and there just aren’t enough good teams. The real question is: what can help mediocre or bad teams to produce something that isn’t a disaster. Frequent opportunities for external intervention – agile – has truly helped.

    It can still go wrong. Sadly, I was tangentially involved as a consultant in one such project. Here, *all* software is multilingual. It’s obvious, since we have 3-1/2 national languages, plus English. In this project, the software was also dealing with multilingual data. I actually went so far as to sit down with the lead developer, to make sure the multilingual data was being dealt with adequately. I didn’t ask about the user interface, because…duh.

    Stupid of me, as it turns out. They delivered a German-only interface. Seriously? I expect better from my 2nd semester programming students… My fault, maybe, but really, there’s just no fix for bad developers. Oh, that was also an agile project…

    3
  25. We are working on housebreaking the new puppy, which means sitting outside while he sniffs the entire yard looking for the perfect spot to NOT do his business, until we give up and let him back in the house. Then within a minute, he’ll have soiled something… so I’m getting reacquainted with sitting in the sun in the yard, swatting bugs. Joy.

    At 2.5 years, Lily is still working on housebreaking. I have four XXL puppy training pads for her strategically located around the house. She has gotten very good at hitting the middle of the pad instead of a corner.
    https://www.walmart.com/ip/Pet-All-Star-XXL-Training-Pads-30-in-x-36-in-100-Count/264726630

  26. “a cloud based trajectory”

    It’s still Somebody Else’s Computer™

    “The Cloud” and the associated Hot Skillz are another “dude” thing I’m told I don’t understand. Developers of my generation don’t want to get left behind like we watched happen to the COBOL developers at places like GTE in the 90s. Millennials don’t want to end up like X-ers, excluded from training on OO development and the web technology. All the fear means not a lot of work actually gets done right now, especially with the “working” from home.

    I’m not thrilled with the direction change at the current employer, but not being a “dude” was ultimately behind why I was terminated from the last job. I just cash the paychecks at the new place as long as no one yells, but I am getting concerned at the increasing impatience of management that I tend to speak using more than one sentence.

    At 61, I realize that I am way behind on my skillz and I am comfortable with that.

    If my business were to abruptly fail, I would find a C++ or Fortran job somewhere.

    Shoot, I may be retired and just don’t know it.

  27. Even the guy who invented the cubicle hates what they’ve done to the workplace. Keep in mind, they were an IMPROVEMENT in privacy and working conditions. The old days had rows of desks aligned to the front of the room, just like a classroom (no coincidence there).

    In fact if you watch Absence of Malice, I believe the newsroom is still set up the old way. There are plenty of old movies that show the typical office environment. Monty Python took a shot at it in the short film before Meaning Of Life.

    n

    I watched Absence of Malice last night. Definitely a massive bullpen.

    When my son interviewed at Google, all they had were large rooms with 30 computers in them on benches. It was your worst nightmare. And the computers were not assigned, it was first come, first served. Welcome to yesterday’s occupants germs on the keyboard and mouse !

    2
  28. Open office bullpens and cubical farms suck. I don’t see how any one creating things gets any work done in these.

    If you’ve ever priced out new cubicles they’re certainly not cheap. I’d have to imagine a few 2×4 and sheetrock walls are cheaper.

    I think they were originally popularized for flexibility, but I think history has shown that for most employers once the cubicles are installed they are rarely (if ever) moved. I always assumed some of it was a control thing. Typically, your monitor faces the entrance to the cubicle. So, manager types can wander around and keep and eye on what work is getting done. That, and your peers can be judgy about what you’re doing.

    Office walls are metal 2x3s and all outlets are run using armored cables. Not cheap.

    The big saving in cubicles are that they are 20 to 30 ft2 each. Walled offices are 100 to 150 ft2 each.

    2

  29. Jeebus:

    Watch: Biden Can’t Help Himself, Asks Little Girl, ‘How Old Are You? 14?’

    plugs is one sick fcuk. Our enemies are laughing their asses off at us. There is no way plugs can last four years. He is sick. He is running nothing at this point.

    And people voted to elect him as our President…really sad…a good laugh for the leaders of other countries around the world…except those that want the US foreign aid checks to keep coming…oh, and the president of Haiti.

    1
    1

  30. I think they were originally popularized for flexibility, but I think history has shown that for most employers once the cubicles are installed they are rarely (if ever) moved. I always assumed some of it was a control thing. Typically, your monitor faces the entrance to the cubicle. So, manager types can wander around and keep and eye on what work is getting done. That, and your peers can be judgy about what you’re doing.

    I’ve been through a number of restacks through the years that involved redoing cube configurations. The (union) crews showed up at 5:00 PM on a Friday and usually done by Sunday morning. Strange if you got stuck late on Friday and had your desk being disassembled from around you.

    Walk around where the monitors face the cube entrance and see how many people have strategically placed mirrors to prevent sneak visits.


  31. Looks like the wife and I need to get a checking account somewhere else,

    Frost Bank.

    Lots of branches and the HEB ATM’s are free. The online banking works great for me.  The phone app, well, that’s a large reason why I have a Smarty Pants™ OFD phone.

    I’ve had an account with them since I moved to Austin. 1980? Never a problem, never an a-hole to deal with.  They were the only bank that would let me open an account with the deposit refund check from the apartment in McAllen /and/ let me have $50 of the $300+ check.   I needed grocery money.

    Funny thing, all the other banks that would open an account wanted to sit on the entire check for a month and are all out of business.  First City, First Interstate, Momentum nee Mercantile Bank Of Dallas aka MBank, NBC, and a couple of s&l’s.   All bought from the FDIC  by out of state banks after they failed.

    Though, Frost did buy out First City after First City’s 2nd FDIC bail out.

  32. The most important thought from the article I linked at Peter Grant’s above is that they MIGHT NOT be just acting out of self interest… they might have weaponized it.

    Blackrock et.al. don’t even have to buy indiscriminately to have maximal effect.

    They’ll just buy up the properties in red and purple districts to flip the electoral map. Under Obama it was called zip code targeting. And it’ll be accelerating once the eviction moratorium ends sometime soon.

    Who do you think they’ll move in there? Well, go ask the people in places like Minneapolis.

    . . .

    And what will that do to the price of your home? You who worked through COVID, who did things right, who paid their mortgage?

    Remember that the obamma crew wanted to destroy the suburbs by forcing low income housing into every area.

    If they own it, they can do whatever they want, including rent to section 8, with more of that guaranteed .fed money coming in …

    n

    Buy it with fed money, then rent it to fed guaranteed renters. Flip a few key zip codes along the way. Then after the locusts have eaten out the neighborhoods, get a fat fed check for ‘redevelopment’.

    n

  33. The most important thought from the article I linked at Peter Grant’s above is that they MIGHT NOT be just acting out of self interest… they might have weaponized it.

    Saw this at his blog also, “A lot of condo owners may be in very deep trouble”
    https://bayourenaissanceman.blogspot.com/2021/07/a-lot-of-condo-owners-may-be-in-very.html

    “Charles Hugh Smith, whom we’ve met in these pages on many occasions, points out that buying or owning a condo in a beachfront building, like the one that collapsed in Florida last month, may involve far greater maintenance costs than expected, and might even result in the loss of one’s investment. Bold, underlined text is my emphasis.”

    “I note that another block of condos, five miles or so from the collapsed building, has already been evacuated for safety reasons. What’s more, a friend of mine who’s a building inspector in Florida says that he and every other inspector he knows have been absolutely swamped with panicked inquiries from condo associations up and down both coasts of the state, demanding safety inspections at once, if not sooner. Some inspectors have allegedly tripled or quadrupled their rates, but despite that are still booked solid for weeks and months to come. He says it’s panic stations out there, because many condo buildings exhibit spalling concrete and rusting rebar in places, but previously no-one gave much thought to that as a potential indicator of collapse. They assumed it was just normal wear and tear.”

    “Even worse, he says rental agencies he knows, that routinely let hundreds of condos to tourists every year, are suddenly finding some of their customers demanding updated building risk assessments before they’re willing to put down deposits on their holidays. Some condo buildings can’t provide them, due to the shortage of inspectors; others show evidence of rust and/or spalling, so that even if they’re actually safe, they don’t look that way to casual inspection. Result: canceled reservations, particularly affecting older buildings. If this grows worse, what will it do to the tourist economies of coastal states? Nobody knows yet… but a growing number of people are getting very, very nervous.”

    Nope, no condo in the sky for this fella. in fact, I refuse to live in a city center also. I am 30 miles away from downtown Houston and still nervous.

  34. And it’ll be accelerating once the eviction moratorium ends sometime soon.

    soon” ha! More like Jan 20, 2025.

    Think about it…the longer the moratorium is in place, the more landlords in trouble, only to have the Feds step in, eject the deadbeat tenants and replace with Sec 8…

    1
  35. At 61, I realize that I am way behind on my skillz and I am comfortable with that.

    If my business were to abruptly fail, I would find a C++ or Fortran job somewhere.

    Shoot, I may be retired and just don’t know it.

    Most of the Hot Skillz involve reinventing the wheel and really aren’t beyond the capability of anyone familiar with the general area of tech to pick up in a very short period of time. The problem is getting past HR without the right buzzwords on the resume.

    Before I left on vacation this week, one of the younger guys at work was spinning his wheels on configuring a manufacturer’s closed source network protocol to feed his Node.js test server, complaining about what he believed to be a “glitch” in the supplied binary causing duplicate packets due to what he believed to be an incorrect configuration value. The mess got dumped on me to figure out, but once I got up to speed on the proprietary software, it took me about 10 minutes to figure out that the vendor used event driven sockets — rare but not unheard of in the Unix world. The default timeout on my co-worker’s Hot Skillz Node.js server socket library was the real issue.

    Node.js is reinventing the Tcl wheel with worse syntax and a couple of orders of magnitude uglier security problems due to layers of poorly understood third party libraries readily available from NPM, which has a poor track record of preventing malware uploads.

    We are still in South Texas. The weather was terrible today so we went and played tourist at SpaceX Boca Chica. They are not set up for visitors and the trip isn’t for the timid, but we got some cool pics.

    The roads to Boca Chica close tonight at 6PM according to the signs. Something is launching soon, either tonight or in the next couple of days.

  36. “Democrats dug themselves an election integrity hole, courts may bury them in it”
    https://justthenews.com/politics-policy/elections/thudemocrats-dug-themselves-election-integrity-hole-courts-may-bury-them

    “From Supreme Court justices to district judges, Biden’s early Jim Crow narrative getting cold shoulder in early rulings.”

    “For months now, President Biden and key Democrats have waged endless battle against state laws designed to improve the integrity of elections, ones that make voting easier and cheating harder.
    From the start, the mission was complicated since its message ran smack into strong American sentiments in the court of public opinion: Polling shows three quarters of Americans support integrity measures like voter ID that Biden called “Jim Crow in the 21st century.”
    Now the Democrat train has run into a similar harsh reality in the courts of law, where justices and judges alike have concluded integrity measures aren’t unconstitutional if they aren’t designed to suppress based on race or skin color or socio-economic status.
    The latest blow to the Jim Crow 2.0 argument was delivered Wednesday, when a federal judge refused to issue a preliminary injunction blocking Georgia’s new election integrity law.”

    I like Voter ID. I think all voters, at the precinct and the absentee, should present a voter id to vote.


  37. “Charles Hugh Smith, whom we’ve met in these pages on many occasions, points out that buying or owning a condo in a beachfront building, like the one that collapsed in Florida last month, may involve far greater maintenance costs than expected, and might even result in the loss of one’s investment. Bold, underlined text is my emphasis.”

    Those in the collapsed condo were facing huge (some $100,000 or more) special assessments for the (2018?) documented repairs after years of deferred reserve payments (deferred by the condo board, i.e. condo owners). Where were those that were blue collar or retirees going to scrap up that kind of cash? No condos, co-ops or HOAs for me.

    1

  38. When my son interviewed at Google, all they had were large rooms with 30 computers in them on benches.

    Seems to me that’s not such a bad idea, though I’d go for comfy chairs (No! Not the comfy chair!). Cafeteria style workplaces with less privacy might encourage people to get about their business instead of jerking off, and having to tidy up and briefcase everything at the end of the day would keep them organized.

    2
    6
    1

  39. I would find a C++ or Fortran job somewhere.

    I am guessing my IBM 1401 Autocoder skills are way out of date

    all out of business. First City, First Interstate, Momentum nee Mercantile Bank Of Dallas aka MBank, NBC

    I worked for NBC from 1982 to 1988. I did the online system, ATM system and maintained the operating system. Even wrote my own module for the OS.

    The oil collapse in Texas slammed them hard, and most of the other banks, making them insolvent, out of business, taken over by the feds. No customers lost money but investors got nothing. Another bank in the area that survived is Broadway Bank. They purchased my PULSE software in 1983. As did City National, and a couple of other banks.

    Frost, Broadway National, and the other banks whose names I do not remember, were basically single banks, no other banks. NBC, City National we’re holding companies that owned multiple banks. Several in locations where oil was the only major industry. Oil companies with huge loans just walked away.

    At that point Texas changed the banking laws and allowed branch banks to try to stem the closures. But it was too late. The holding companies collapsed. The single banks had mortgages, vehicle loans, personal loan, that were not affected by the oil industry collapse.

    I was a bank officer and had access to a lot of information that I probably should not have seen. Being responsible for the online system I had access to information that I definitely should not have seen.

    I get retirement from my tenure at NBC. Bank of America owns the retirement accounts. When the collapse came anyone with $3,500 or less in their retirement account got paid the funds. I had more and figured I would never see the money. I was wrong. I have been getting $118 a month for the last 16 years and will until I die.

  40. We are still in South Texas. The weather was terrible today so we went and played tourist at SpaceX Boca Chica. They are not set up for visitors and the trip isn’t for the timid, but we got some cool pics.

    The roads to Boca Chica close tonight at 6PM according to the signs. Something is launching soon, either tonight or in the next couple of days.

    They are going to conduct failure tests for the Starship Booster over the next few days. Could be some big fireballs and lots of metal flying around the place. Or not.
    https://www.space.com/spacex-starship-super-heavy-booster-rollout-video


  41. Those in the collapsed condo were facing huge (some $100,000 or more) special assessments for the (2018?)

    Well, for many of the people in the condo the problem has been solved.

    The scumbag lawyers will be the only winners.

  42. @Nick

    “Then after the locusts have eaten out the neighborhoods, get a fat fed check for ‘redevelopment’.”

    Sooner or later someone is going to get the bright idea of finding out where the manager pukes live, buying the house next door, and renting to unreformed meth and crackheds.

  43. Nope, no condo in the sky for this fella. 

    Beachfront condos in Florida have always been a lousy long term investment. The people who make the money are the developers who put up the buildings, and no one rolled the dice in that business prior to the current lull in Gulf hurricanes which began ~ 70 years ago.

    (Yes, lull.)

    And, as I noted last week, I’ve seen the exact same maintenance issues with the pool deck at the Dobie Center in Austin.

    If the name sounds familiar, the Dobie Center was where the first Dell PCs were assembled in Michael Dell’s “dorm room”, the corner penthouse suite #1792.

  44. “We should advocate for trade schools just as much as college, especially after a pandemic”
    https://prather2022.com/articles/we-should-advocate-for-trade-schools-just-as-much-as-college-especially-after-a-pandemic

    “Why is it always, “Make sure you go to college,” and never “Make sure you go to trade school?”
    Most high school students are funneled into two- or four-year universities. Little thought is given to other paths toward adulthood, and schools and parents often fail to present alternative options.
    The allure of a college degree has tarnished the reputation of trade schools. COVID-19 hammered most professional sectors but many trade jobs saw double or triple growth. During the economic downturn, trade labor continued expanding despite a volatile world. The pandemic revealed just how much rests upon the shoulders of skilled trade workers.
    For students who may not know what they want to do, or if they merely want to try something other than college, trade school offers promise. Many trade workers collect far higher salaries than college-educated young adults and, in some other countries, trade school is popular and encouraged.”

    Skilled trade workers are the backbones of our industries and economies. Not the MBAs.

  45. They are going to conduct failure tests for the Starship Booster over the next few days. Could be some big fireballs and lots of metal flying around the place. Or not.

    I have a few pics of the big rocket on the test stand.

    SpaceX has trashed the road between the “Starport” and the launch site. If you go to take a look, take the big truck, not the Highlander or Camry. We had the Exploder, and I was worried about having enough clearance after a week of heavy rains.

    Ironically, it isn’t terrain for a Tesla, even the unibody Tonytruck, but I saw a few S/X/3 sedans in the parking lots.

    If you just want to view a launch, the south end of South Padre Island is just four miles from the site, closer than you can get to 39 A/B at Kennedy, with a lot more civilization than Boca Chica … and drainage.

    Are they planning to launch the really big rocket from Boca Chica? The “Starport” and Boca Chica Village holdout homeowners are really close to the launchpad.

  46. Don’t recall if anyone here made note, but folks looking at photos and video of the condo collapse have noted that the steel that is supposed to connect columns and slabs looks grossly inadequate.

    And there is an identical sister building…

     

    2

  47. We should advocate for trade schools just as much as college, especially after a pandemic

    I fund a scholarship each year in the amount of $1,000 for vocational school. Award is decided by staff based who will benefit the most. The theory being that those with limited assets providing a small boost will make a big difference. Money is paid directly to the school and no refunds to the student if they drop out.

    I call it the “Purple Ping Pong Ball” scholarship. Why? I don’t want my name on the scholarship and I wanted something light hearted. I am not a fan of “memorial” scholarships.

    The school pays me $750.00 a year for the sports pictures. So I am not out a lot of my own money. I suspect there are several adults who could do the same for a vocational scholarship.

    3
    1
    10
  48. @Lynn

    “Skilled trade workers are the backbones of our industries and economies. Not the MBAs.”

    MBA was trendy, overhyped, and functionally useless in 90% of the cases. The “case study” approach usually fails when a simple question is asked: What happened at company X after the period covered? Answering that question is trivial with the internet, and the answer is usually “Nothing good”

  49. If you just want to view a launch, the south end of South Padre Island is just four miles from the site, closer than you can get to 39 A/B at Kennedy, with a lot more civilization than Boca Chica … and drainage.

    Are they planning to launch the really big rocket from Boca Chica? The “Starport” and Boca Chica Village holdout homeowners are really close to the launchpad.

    Musk is planning daily flights of Starship in ballistic mode at New York City, Houston, Los Angeles, Tokyo, Beijing, London, etc by 2030 at the absolute latest. 30 minute flight for up to 200 people from anywhere on the globe to anywhere on the globe for $5,000 each one way. So Starship will need to be able to take off from some cramped quarters. Two biggies for such a service, a quick trip and 15 minutes in free fall in orbit. Free barf bags for all passengers !

  50. @Lynn

    “Skilled trade workers are the backbones of our industries and economies. Not the MBAs.”

    MBA was trendy, overhyped, and functionally useless in 90% of the cases. The “case study” approach usually fails when a simple question is asked: What happened at company X after the period covered? Answering that question is trivial with the internet, and the answer is usually “Nothing good”

    My 55 year old sister in law just got her MBA from TAMU. But she may be the next CEO of a financial services company in the northwestern portion of the USA and it was one of the requirements for the promotion from VP.


  51. Free barf bags for all passengers !

    I hope they are trash bags you “tie around your neck” for free-fall. A small valve for air on the side.


  52. Peter Grant has a good summary article about hedgies buying up housing..

    This may be overblown. From the article linked below, about Invitation Homes, the now publicly traded arm of Blackstone:

    Invitation Homes are still buying and recently said they have 1 billion dollars to spend on houses in the US. That sounds like a lot right? That would buy about 3,500 houses. Houses are very expensive and the hedge funds own a very small percentage of them. It is estimated that big investment companies own about 2% of all rental homes. Not 2% of all homes, just 2% of all rentals!

    https://investfourmore.com/hedge-funds-real-estate-crash/

    4
    2

  53. Frost, Broadway National, and the other banks whose names I do not remember, were basically single banks, no other banks. NBC, City National we’re holding companies that owned multiple banks.

    Texas had a law forbidding branch banking until 1986 or so. When we moved back to Houston in 1984, we ended up banking at a new, small bank called Park National. They were formed by bankers concerned by the excesses they saw in oil and gas lending and commercial real estate lending. Over the next few years they grew rapidly as they were handed the assets of failing banks. They got pretty big in Houston, then sold out to Frost when Frost wanted a presence here.

     

     

  54. Don’t recall if anyone here made note, but folks looking at photos and video of the condo collapse have noted that the steel that is supposed to connect columns and slabs looks grossly inadequate.

    And there is an identical sister building…

    And the building lasted through 40 years of life with several hurricanes and such. I read an article that claimed that the building structural standards are 3X of the actual requirement to just hold the building up. So if the builder cut the required steel by 2/3rds …

    I suspect that we will not know what caused the failure for six months to a year. And maybe not even then.

  55. “Houses are very expensive and the hedge funds own a very small percentage of them.”

    –the point in the article was that by buying and controlling the rental market in just a few places, they could have outsized effects. And from the article linked a week (or more) ago, they aren’t buying willy nilly, but are concentrating their efforts.

    The math quoted equals about $250K per house, which is half off in most areas. If they buy distressed and bank sales, like they did in 2008, they’ll get 100% return or more when they sell. That’s pretty good. If they’re bidding up the price, and paying over market (like the other article said), there must be a damn good reason, and we just aren’t seeing it. Or at least they BELIEVE there is a good reason. They could be wrong.

    There was also the whole bit about getting out of dollar financial investments and into real stuff, especially stuff with an inflation proof income stream.

    and finally, if blackrock has a T$ to invest, or more, instead of B$, then it’s 3.5 million houses, which is a FUKCTON for one company to control.

    It bears watching in any case. If all the houses on my street became rentals, we’d take the money and run, before there was no money to take.

    n


  56. Texas had a law forbidding branch banking until 1986 or so

    True. A work around was large holding companies that owned the banks. But each bank had to be solvent on it’s own. The elimination of “no brank banks” was an effort by Texas stop many smaller banks from becoming insolvent when oil crashed. Small banks in oil towns were really under pressure. By becoming a branch bank of a larger bank the assets of the larger bank would bolster the smaller bank.

    NBC, known as National Bancshares Corporation, owned 23 banks all over Texas when I worked for the organization. Until the branch banking was allowed the banks were named NBC – Houston, NBC McAllen, etc. Providing the corporate name but still having their own name. During my tenure the holding company purchased 4 or 5 more smaller banks. The holding company was basically the majority, and only, stockholder of the smaller bank.

    The holding company also did the item processing for all the banks and provided ATM and Teller systems to the banks. A lot of checks were manually delivered by contracted drivers whose only job was to travel to and from the smaller banks every day of the week. Naturally this was in the day of physical check delivery before check truncation became viable.

    The parent bank of NBC San Antonio was actually larger in assets and processing than any other bank in San Antonio. Add in the smaller banks and the organization was quite large surpassed by some bank holding company in Dallas. Frost Bank, Broadway Bank, etc. did not become holding companies and remained smaller banks. They all have branch banks now that branch banking is allowed. All the branch banks are considered one bank in terms of assets and liabilities, thus insolvency.

    NBC was run under the hands of Richard Calvert, whose brother, Jonathan, was a very high investment fund manager. I did some coding for Jonathan to develop a portfolio tracking system. Jonathan’s building was across the street from the bank his brother Richard was the CEO. In my opinion, Richard Calver made, or encouraged the board, to make some very bad decisions with loans. This was the cause of the bank’s demise and being taken over.

    I was fortunate I had no stock in the bank and chose to not have stock purchased in my retirement account. When the bank was taken over the stock became worthless. A guy I knew at the Bank, Ray Gross, invested his retirement money plus some extra in bank stock. He had over $400K in stock and after the insolvency he had nothing. And was let go from the bank.

    I knew something was up when the IT department was sold to MTech. I knew it was the beginning of the end. We were all told to be in the conference room at 7:30 AM. Richard got up, said we were all terminated and left the room. Then the MTech chap got up and said we were all hired and were now employees of MTech.

    I had a team of 12 people. Two months after MTech took over I was told I had to eliminate 7 of my people. Hardest thing I have ever done, literally tears were shed in the decision process. After that I knew it was time to hit the road. I thus got out before the ultimate collapse which happened about a year later.

  57. Just got an email about a class action suit against BCBST (BlueCross BlueShield, all entities are involved). Something in the amount of 2.7 billion dollars. I will probably get a check for $5.49 (amounts less than $5.00 are not sent), the law firm will probably get $1 billion dollars. I despise class action suits. They do nothing but enrich law firms and lawyers. Yes, I still apply to be part of the settlement as I am not going to give my share to another claimant. I don’t like a lot of things that I still do, this being one of many. I have gotten checks in the mail for as little as $0.27, or a coupon for $0.50 off my next purchase of $100.00 or more. Smallest check was from the Enron settlement, $0.02. I never cashed the check.

    1
  58. Smallest check was from the Enron settlement, $0.02. I never cashed the check. 

    The check itself will probably be worth more in the long run, especially if it was for something heinous they did to you.

    Sadly, I no longer have my heavily indexed copy of the email corpus or I could search for your name.

    As I’ve noted before, my wife’s cousin’s proper name came up in the corpus. She was an employee of PG&E, and the managers in Portland had to email corporate when her salary demands to transition from temp to perm exceeded their guidelines.

    Enron was tight fisted with the employees.

  59. Just got an email about a class action suit against BCBST (BlueCross BlueShield, all entities are involved). Something in the amount of 2.7 billion dollars. I will probably get a check for $5.49 (amounts less than $5.00 are not sent), the law firm will probably get $1 billion dollars. I despise class action suits. They do nothing but enrich law firms and lawyers. Yes, I still apply to be part of the settlement as I am not going to give my share to another claimant. I don’t like a lot of things that I still do, this being one of many. I have gotten checks in the mail for as little as $0.27, or a coupon for $0.50 off my next purchase of $100.00 or more. Smallest check was from the Enron settlement, $0.02. I never cashed the check.

    I have paid BCBSTX almost a million dollars in the last 15 years. I have gotten the same email and postcards. I suspect that I would get the same check for $5.49. I am not going to bother with it.


  60. must really burn when they see the POC students with the admission requirements waived, and full ride grants

    Who knows? So many of the 20-somethings are so brainwashed that they seem to truly believe that it is only systemic racism which is keeping the noble non-whites down.

    But what must really chap their asses is when their classmate who didn’t go to college is earning $40,000 to turn off their utilities for nonpayment.

    2
    1
  61. “15 States Reach Agreement, Pave Way For $4.5 Billion Settlement Over Opioid Crisis”
    https://dailycaller.com/2021/07/08/purdue-pharma-letitia-james-maura-healey/

    “A coalition of 15 states agreed to a deal with drug maker Purdue Pharma, which could soon lead to a $4.5 billion settlement over the company’s role in the U.S. opioid epidemic.
    The states agreed to no longer oppose Purdue Pharma’s bankruptcy plan while the pharmaceutical company agreed to publicly release a trove of millions of documents, according to a court filing late Wednesday night. The Sackler family, which owns the company, would pay an additional $50 million under the settlement.
    The agreement will be tacked onto a broader proposal that is set to be voted on by more than 3,000 plaintiffs, The New York Times reported. In addition to the states, plaintiffs include cities, counties and tribes that sued the company over its role in boosting its painkiller OxyContin, the cause of thousands of opioid deaths.”

    OK, this hits my definition of crazy.

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

  62. “I would find a C++ or Fortran job somewhere.”

    I am guessing my IBM 1401 Autocoder skills are way out of date

    IBM has been scavenging to find qualified mainframe people for customers as of late.

    Our intern at CGI placed in the top ten nationally in a “Master the Mainframe” contest sponsored by Big Blue as part of the effort. I believe she went to Visa for “back up the Brinks truck” money when she graduated the following Summer.

  63. Big dead rat in the attic trap. Whooooeeee the smell….

    good thing it’s garbage day tomorrow.

    n

    1
  64. From one of my enewsletters…

    Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) pose a significant threat in the United States. In 2020 alone, there were 2,061 total bomb threat, suspicious package, and device-related incidents across the nation, according to CISA’s Office for Bombing Prevention TRIPwire report.

    Major bombings can cause mass casualty events and cost hundreds of millions of dollars or more. Domestic violent extremists and others can build IEDs from common household items found at retail stores across the country. Approximately 250,000 businesses in the U.S. sell, use or distribute materials that can be used to build bombs.

    –the factoid is from the announcement of a new program to encourage people to snitch. I mean, if they see something, call the FBI.

    n

  65. –the factoid is from the announcement of a new program to encourage people to snitch. I mean, if they see something, call the FBI.

    n

    –the factoid is from the announcement of a new program to encourage people to snitch. I mean, if they see something, call the Federal Police.

    Fixed that for ya.

  66. https://www.zdnet.com/article/kaseya-ransomware-attack-your-questions-answered/

    n

    Kaseya ransomware attack: Your questions answered

    It appears that attackers have carried out a supply chain ransomware attack by leveraging a vulnerability in Kaseya’s VSA software against multiple managed service providers (MSP) — and their customers. Customers were notified of the breach via email, phone, and online notices.

    The FBI described the incident succinctly: a “supply chain ransomware attack leveraging a vulnerability in Kaseya VSA software against multiple MSPs and their customers.” The vendor has also provided an in-depth technical analysis of the attack.

    A security expert said the ransomware was pushed via an automated, fake, and malicious software update using Kaseya VSA dubbed “Kaseya VSA Agent Hot-fix”. As of July 6, the estimate of customers impacted by the attack is between 50 direct customers, and between 800 and 1,500 businesses down the chain.

    See the latest CISA-FBI Guidance for MSPs and their Customers Affected by the Kaseya VSA Supply-Chain Ransomware Attack for additional awareness and recommended actions.

    1
  67. https://www.goldmoney.com/research/goldmoney-insights/the-end-of-the-bank-credit-cycle?gmrefcode=gata

    Somewhat turgid but otherwise straightforward overview of the state of the economy today.

    Wow, nightraker, that was great. Thanks. The argument for a bank credit cycle as an explanation for boom and bust is good but it’s still sort of a chicken and egg problem°. But it’s better than declaring the symptom, the ‘business cycle’, to be the disease.

    °Which comes first, availability of credit, or demand for loans?

  68. Latest from Japan…now no Japanese spectators (foreign spectators already banned) at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics (no, they didn’t change the name to 2021) because…WuFlu.

  69. @jenny, thanks for the housebreaking link. We will give the short confinement a try.

    n


  70. Most of the Hot Skillz involve reinventing the wheel

    This. When I got my first professorship back in the mid-90’s, I had one lecture segment that showed how IT traveled in iterations. For example, Big iron with remote terminals, then computing-on-the-desk with PCs, then big servers with thin clients, then the next generation of more capable PCs, then web-services, then… Each iteration is a bit different, but uses the same concepts that existed in earlier generations.

    Of course, the young folk just entering IT have no idea about those earlier generations. They think their ideas are fresh and new, even though they are often re-inventing concepts that existed before. Which means that they fail to carry forward any of the lessons learned.

    Or, another example: how many times have people tried to invent tools to let non-programmers create applications? Today, it’s called “no-code, low code”. This fails every time, because most people simply cannot think in a sufficiently structured fashion. Those who do successfully use the tools could also have learned to program – which would have given them much more flexibility and control over their applications. Excel macro wizards, in the umpteenth generation.

    due to layers of poorly understood third party libraries

    Pet peeve number two: Today’s frameworks use libraries that use libraries that use libraries. Programmers wind up loading dozens of external packages into their applications. They use a tiny fraction of the total capabilities, but it’s all there, bloating the applications and providing a nice, fat attack surface.

    I like Voter ID. I think all voters, at the precinct and the absentee, should present a voter id to vote.

    Most people in Switzerland vote by mail. They have recently added a new security measure to ballots. Off the top of my head, the current measures are: (1) You have to be registered in your local town, in order to receive a mail-in ballot (this obviously involves identifying yourself). (2) The ballot is sent to your registered address. (3) You have to sign an accompanying piece of paper when you mail your ballot. (4, new) you much attach a personalized sticker next to the signature, from a sheet that was issued separately.

    The new measure (4) is a nice one. Verifying signatures is error-prone and time-consuming, and realistically probably doesn’t happen. The stickers can be validated by machine, so this ought to be effective against most sorts of ballot theft.

Comments are closed.