Archive for the ‘Decline of civilization’ Category

The book

Saturday, October 14th, 2017

Smoke from Northern California fires

Two minutes out the door on our morning walk Otto and I were confronted by one of the Mission District’s fragrant street drunks. He pointed at Otto with a shaking hand and said “Sir! Do you live with this dog? Do you feed him? Unsanitary! Haven’t you read the book? The book says that he is unsanitary. Unsanitary! You must stop. You must read the book! The book!“ Of course, he was drunk on his ass, stank like a sewer, rotting clothes bundled his frame…

Fires destroying one of the most beautiful places on earth… the smoke burning lungs and turning skies orange… people in Puerto Rico forced to drink toxic water, running out of food… Houston a mud bath and Florida half under water… A deranged government hell bent on abandoning its citizens…

It’s all so disheartening… the world is truly in ruins when even a dog isn’t allowed to bring you joy.

Brexit madness

Sunday, June 26th, 2016

Lets do a bit of math, shall we?

  • The UK is host to approximately 64.5 million souls as of 2013.
  • 17.4 million of them voted to leave the EU in a non-binding referendum this past Wednesday.
  • 16.1 million voted to remain.
  • According to the NY Times, the turnout was about 72% of eligible voters,
  • Which means there were approximately 46.5 voters eligible to vote.

In other words, 37.4% of eligible voters, or 26.9% of the total UK population made a decision to abrogate the defining treaty of post World War II Europe.

This is the treaty that brought peace and prosperity to hundreds of millions in dozens of countries for the first time in centuries.

And the UK government is meekly going along with it?

And I thought American politics are fucked.


Disasters that come from the mouth

Sunday, January 9th, 2011

The guy with the gun pulled the trigger in Tucson. But the constant vitriol of hate and demonization by political “leaders” and others helped set the stage.

In 1998, there was a flurry of anti-gay hate speech. Religious groups, sports figures and politicians fell over each other in their eagerness to get in front of a camera and denounce homosexuals, all because President Clinton had appointed James Hormel as ambassador to Luxembourg. Hormel’s sin was being gay.

In June of that year, Trent Lott, then Senate Majority Leader, happily pandered to his base by upping the volume of venom considerably, very publicly comparing gays to alcoholics, sex addicts and kleptomaniacs, characterizing gays as sinners and a “problem to be solved.” (more…)

A Fake Society for a Fake World

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

From Hollywood to Oprah, seems like is taking a swipe at Mark Zuckerberg and his thrown-together monster, Facebook. I got burned by the two-faced beast too…

Every geek, techie and IT pro I know has exactly the same opinion of Facebook: Don’t. Go. There. Ever. Facebook is a giant con, they all say, a tentacled medusa crafted to steal personal information, parse it into marketable chunks for sale to the highest bidder. Privacy, as we have been informed by Zuckie, is dead.

I adhere – or did – to the no-Facebook ethic. It wasn’t hard: 25 years ago with a single PC and a database program now known only to aging geeks I extracted personal info from tiny, innocuous client lists that made my conscience burn. I know well what can be – is being – done with the terabytes of personal info that everyone is shoveling onto the ‘net.

That’s not the only thing about Facebook that makes me queasy. A virtual social network? Posting life’s little conceits and embarrassments on some public wall? Friending as a verb? Unfriending? How very high school. Ugh. My dislike is not unique: “I hate the very idea of it,” is a critique I’ve heard and read many times.