Column Time at Chaos Manor; for the record on Ebola; Some comments on ISIS

View 845 Friday, October 10, 2014

“Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency.”

President Barack Obama, January 31, 2009


It is time for me to get the first draft of the October Chaos Manor Reviews column done, so this s a potpourri of stuff dashed off while coming up for air from reviews of Windows 8 and 10, new routers, Surface Pro 3 and lots of other stuff.


Thomas Eric Duncan was cremated in accord with his own wishes. The CDC dictates that Ebola victims either be cremated or buried in a sealed casket with other precautions. Since no one knows just how long the Ebola virus would last in a sealed casket containing an unembalmed corpse, cremation is obviously preferable from a public health view.

The Reverend Jesse Jackson has suggested that Mr. Duncan was not properly treated because he was an underprivileged black man, and a number of lawyers are said to be offering their services to the family. Mr. Duncan was turned away from the Emergency room on his first trip, and “sent home with antibiotics.” He told the hospital reception worker that he had been in Africa, but not that he had been exposed to Ebola. Given that (to his great credit) he has assisted a pregnant young woman in her vain attempts to enter several hospitals in Monrovia, Liberia, then carried her from the taxi into her quarters where she died of Ebola within hours, he must have at least suspected that he had been exposed and that what was wrong with him was not ordinary flu.


This is pledge week at KUSC, the good music broadcast service of the University of Southern California. That means that I get to harass you about subscribing and supporting this project. The View from Chaos Manor (which is where you are now), and Chaos Manor Reviews , the continuation of my old BYTE column, operate on the Public Radio Model – everything is free, but if we do not receive sufficient support it will go away. We have done this for more than a dozen years. I took a couple of years off from the Chaos Manor Reviews column, but last month I restarted it, and I am halfway through the October column.

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Future NASA astronauts will wear skintight spacesuits


Long time readers will recall that I worked on Space Activity Suits when I was in the aerospace industry, and I have actually worn one in a test chamber at Litton Industries back in the late 1950’s. My Mars Colony novel BIRTH OF FIRE, uses “skin suits” extensively and their existence is a major plot point. I also used space activity suits in most of my Aeneus McKenzie asteroid colony novels.  The science is good, and they are far more effective than the suits we employ at present.  Three and a half pounds per square inch of oxygen will keep people alive, but twelve pounds of oxygen enriched air is a great deal better for everyone, and if you use 12 pounds of high O2 air you don’t need a long period of pre-breathing it before you go on EVA.  More another time but recall that the current suits were mostly designed for 35 year old experienced astronauts with a Ph.D.  What’s needed to conquer space is some 18 year old riggers to do the physical work.  All officers doesn’t make an effective colony or colony ship.



RISE OF THE MACHINES: MRI Scanner Disarms Officer And Fires His Weapon


A medical device—apparently developed by Cyberdyne Systems—disarmed an off-duty police officer, took possession of the weapon, fired it, and refused to let it go until it’s power was, um, terminated.

We do not contemplate sending Terminators to harass those who do not help pay for this place.


Generals blast Obama’s order of troops to fight Ebola

‘The purpose of our soldiers is to fight a war, not medical battles’


We are sending 2000 troops into a high disease zone.  In mu experience it will be a miracle if not a single one of the men come down with a fresh dose of one or another STD given six months.  Perhaps no one will contract Ebola, but that’s not really the way to bet it.

Shipment of medical supplies to fight Ebola in Sierra Leone reportedly delayed for weeks

A shipping container filled with approximately $140,000 worth of medical equipment needed to fight the spread of the Ebola virus in the West African country of Sierra Leone has sat untouched on the docks of the country’s capital for nearly two months according to a published report.

According to The New York Times the shipment of hospital linens, protective suits, face masks, and other items arrived in the port of Freetown Aug. 9, but has still not been cleared by government officials.

The Iron Law of Bureaucracy rules even in plague zones.


Teacher Carries Plastic Sword on “Talk Like A Pirate Day”, Police Lock-Down 4 Schools


We are all safer now.


I am working on the October column now. More another time.


This Gun Makes And Fires Paper Airplanes

Yes, you read that correctly.



Who wants to travel by air for the next couple weeks? NOT ME!!!

At this rate, someone who gets airsick aboard a flight is going to cause interminable delays and possibly quarantines…

Stephanie Osborn

Interstellar Woman of Mystery <>



"Hiring Grandparents Only": 230K September Jobs Added In 55-69 Age Group; 10K Lost In Prime, 25-54 Group

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by Tyler Durden on 10/03/2014 11:00 -0400


The further one digs into today’s "blockbuster" jobs report, the uglier it gets. Because it is not only the participation rate collapse, the slide in average earnings, but, topping it all off, we just learned that the future of the US workforce is bleak. In fact, with the age of the median employed male now in their mid-40’s, the US workforce has never been older. Case in point: the September data confirmed that the whopping surge in jobs… was thanks to your "grandparents" those in the 55-69 age group, which comprised the vast majority of the job additions in the month, at a whopping 230K.This was the biggest monthly jobs increase in the 55 and over age group since February!

What about the prime worker demographic, those aged 25-54 and whose work output is supposed to propel the US economy forward? They lost 10,000 jobs.

Of course, don’t expect any of this to be mentioned on any financial entertainment outlets: it would spoil the party of today’s "surging" jobs day.


How ISIS Is Using Us to Get What It Wants



"Everyone it seems, is seeking to use ISIS for its own ends."

Everyone it seems, is seeking to use ISIS for its own ends. Raghida Dergham, senior diplomatic correspondent for Al-Hayat, writes of the serious outbreak of schizophrenia that has struck the Gulf in regards to what it wants from the United States: "What is remarkable… is the sudden candor in expressing radical differences, for example between the fact that Gulf governments have characterized the ISIS threat as an ‘existential’ one, and the fact that a large segment of the public sympathizes with ISIS and its motives, and sees it as something necessary in the balance of power and the balance of terror."

"The Gulf," she continues, primarily sees ISIS as "a necessary instrument to confront the Islamic Republic of Iran and its regional ambitions, especially in the war in Syria" — and not as terrorists.

The Gulf governments’ tepid "dive" into this new "war" — in contrast to their rhetoric — may be judged by the scale of their contribution to the start of the air campaign in Syria: Four F-16 fighter jets from Saudi Arabia, four warplanes from the UAE, two from Bahrain, and one Mirage jet from Qatar "which did not drop any bombs, or take an ‘active part’ in the attack."

And just as "the Gulf’ wishes to leverage the "war" primarily against President Assad, Russia and Iran, by contrast, insist in doing the converse: they want President Obama to leverage the "war" precisely (and only) at ISIS in Syria and Iraq. Indeed Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov has encouraged U.S. air attacks on ISIS in Syria, but with the proviso that they are indeed targeted on ISIS — and not the government — and are directly or indirectly coordinated with Damascus.

And in response to Obama’s threats against any Syrian targeting of U.S. aircraft (President Obama threatened to take out Syria’s air defense system in retaliation), Russia has moved its own piece on the chessboard, precisely to checkmate Obama. Russia has threatened in response, to escalate weapons supplies to the Syrian government (including the means for it to defend itself against U.S. air attack) were U.S. planes to attack Syrian government positions — either deliberately or accidentally. It is unlikely, too, to be a coincidence that we hear reports of Russian "Sumoum" ships specialized in air defense arriving recently in Latakia. Russia and Iran will cooperate with the U.S. in the Syrian war theater, but only if defined air-corridors, agreed targets for U.S. air assaults, and guarantees that the U.S. will not attempt to use the situation to create "safe havens" for the Syrian opposition are given.


At a million dollars a missile, Tomahawks are an expensive way to kill infantrymen. And if you do not occupy the land you take you will not keep it.  We could liberate Mosul and give it to the Kurds.  We could liberate all of Kurdish Iraq, which would make a positive gain.  Firing million dollar missiles at a pickup truck full of riflemen seems a rather expensive way to show determination.

If you have no objective for your actions, it is hard to accomplish your desires.




Freedom is not free. Free men are not equal. Equal men are not free.




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