Chaos Manor View, Wednesday, June 10, 2015
The hearing aid problem was mechanical and they can replace ear pieces and such on the spot so my hearing is at least as good as it was any any time after the stroke and possibly as good as back last year.
Saturday I get a new reprogramming of the electronics. We’ll see it it gets any better.
New iPhone 6 BIG works fine.
New Kindle Fire Big works fine. New Kindle smaller also seem to work fine. I am well Kindled.
Roberta had a dental emergency and much of yesterday and today are devoured by locusts as I try to deal with it and Larry’s car won’t start so he will be late to Wed conference with Jack Cohen and then I have to talk them into taking me to the grocery store to get gluten free soup – Wolfgang Puck makes good gf chicken soup. Needless to say Roberta will not be joining us for lunch.
And it is hot and gloomy and muggy in Los Angeles.
President Obama has announced that he will send more troops to Iraq. It does not sound as if he will send many. This is a drastic mistake. Never do your enemy a small injury. The American way of war is Victory.
I could eradicate the Caliphate with two divisions plus the Warthogs; I do not think he is sending enough to win; I fear he will be feeding a squad a day meatgrinder if we are unfortunate, and prolonging a stalemate at best.
More later: Steve is here and we are making contact with Dr. Cohen in England.
We had a good lunch and afterward Niven and I tried to some grocery shopping but I couldn’t remember the brand of cranberry juice despite having seen it at the breakfast table for weeks. Alas I can’t go correct that, and I didn’t want to ask Larry to go again because it’s hot and the Studio City parking lot was so full we had a good hike getting into the store. Of course coming out we walked past dozens of close by empty parking spaces. I guess it’s always that way.
We had a good lunch and marveled at our iPhones – Steve got a hew iPhone 6 recently and of course I just got mine. They are now fully as capable as Larry and I imagined ‘pocket computers” to be in Mote in God’s Eye in 1972. So far Mote still holds up in technology, but I can see a time coming when 21st Century technology puts to shame everything we had imagined for a far future. As Steve put it, we have reached the future, at least as we saw it in 1972.
Only we haven’t of course. For the money NASA spent since Apollo we ought to be halfway to Alpha Centauri by now. Perhaps not so far, but we’d certainly have more space infrastructure. It’s coming and the technology makes it cheaper. The technical infrastructure makes it easier; but the bureaucracy is keeping up with its control, too. Bureaucracies are progressive. meaning they have a burning fear that someone. somewhere, is doing something without permission.
Now back to work.
I heard he is sending ‘advisors’. This is good if the Iraqi’s have the will to do what is essential. BIG IF.
Your idea about keeping the oil running is a smart one, I doubt we will do that.
Advisors will not make Sunni confidant that Iraq national Army will not kill them, nor will they be able to prevent the Iraqi Army from either running away or being merciless if they win a battle.
Never Talk to the FBI – Denny Hastert Edition
Why every American should be alarmed by the Hastert case
To the average citizen, the news that former House Speaker Dennis Hastert has been indicted by federal prosecutors for failing to file required reports for cash transactions in his own bank account and then allegedly making false statements to the FBI, may seem like just another case of a political corruption and scandal.
That is not the case.
On Tuesday, Hastert pleaded not guilty. The large amounts of cash that he withdrew were allegedly used to pay someone who may have alleged he was abused by Hastert when the Republican politician was a high school wrestling coach.
But that is not what Hastert has been indicted for, and on closer examination, there are serious questions to be raised about the legal basis for the charges as well as the proper exercise of prosecutorial discretion by federal officials. As a preliminary matter it must be pointed out that none of these charges has anything to do with Hastert’s congressional service and the alleged abuse would have occurred many years before Hastert entered political life.
MSNBC LIVE WITH THOMAS ROBERTS, 6/9/15, 1:36 PM ET
A closer look at the legal charges against Dennis Hastert
It is also not clear whether Hastert’s payments to the accuser represent an illicit demand – extortion – or were made as part of some private settlement of such claims.
What is clear is that the former speaker did not want the reports filed that banking laws require when withdrawing amounts in excess of $10,000. When he realized such reports needed to be filed, he made the withdrawals in amounts under the $10,000 threshold, constituting illegal structuring of financial transactions.
I never met Hastert and I know nothing about him; but I do not trust the impartiality here.
After Reading David C.G. Hecht
I looked up that “first step into a thousand years of darkness” and found Reagan’s speech from 1964. Listening to him speak for the first
15 minutes, I am shocked at how the issues are the same today as in 1964. Nothing has been done and we still have the same idiotic bureaucrats making things worse.
Another thing that strikes me; I forgot there was a time when politicians were respectable people who used facts and made sense when they talked. Now, I think the closest thing to a politician is a dim-witted customer service representative who reads from a script on the phone and can’t ever seem to get your phone number right even after you repeat it six times.
I wonder how many members of the general public would even understand what Reagan is saying.
◊ ◊ ◊ ◊ ◊
Joshua Jordan, KSC
Reagan wrote most of his own speeches, and was very widely read. It’s a pity so many of his speeches have vanished.
Washington Scrutinizes the Sharing Economy (nyt)
June 9, 2015 6:06 pm June 9, 2015 6:06 pm
WASHINGTON — Washington is thinking hard about the sharing economy these days.
On Tuesday, the Federal Trade Commission held a daylong workshop dedicated to examining Internet peer-to-peer platforms like Uber, Airbnb and Postmates, and their offerings of on-demand rides, beds and slices of cake. Regulators, academics and industry representatives got together to consider the government’s place in overseeing those businesses.
The conversations were not uncontroversial. Sitting next to the head of global public policy for Airbnb, Vanessa Sinders of the American Hotel and Lodging Association warned against “rogue commercial interests” like Airbnb that were going unregulated. In some places, she said, “they are simply illegal hotels.”
Others said it was too soon for the government to intervene in a bigger way. Liran Einav, an economics professor at Stanford University, said he did not think regulations should be extended to the sharing economy just yet. “We should let it play out for a few years to get an idea of how it will operate, and then customize a level playing field,” he said.
Not everyone saw things that way. “It’s wrong that uncertainty should lead to forbearance,” said Glen Weyl, a senior researcher with Microsoft Research. “I’m not sure we have the luxury of saying, ‘We don’t know what’s going on here, let’s wait and see.’ ”
Somewhere, someone is out there doing thing without permission. And may, they’re not the right things. We must do something.
Microsoft Picks Unusual Place to Make Its Giant Touch Screen: The U.S. (nyt)
By NICK WINGFIELDJUNE 10, 2015
REDMOND, Wash. — There is nothing ordinary about Surface Hub, a gargantuan touch-screen computer that Microsoft is about to start selling to companies as a high-tech replacement for conference room whiteboards.
The largest Surface Hub, measuring 84 inches diagonally, looks like an iPad that has gone through a growth spurt. The 4K resolution of the screen produces dazzling images. At $20,000 apiece, a price Microsoft plans to announce on Wednesday, it should.
Just as unusual is where Microsoft is building the Surface Hub: Wilsonville, Ore., just outside Portland and about 200 miles south of the company’s headquarters in Redmond, Wash. That puts the Surface Hub in a rare category, since the majority of Microsoft’s better-known devices, like the Xbox game console, are made overseas.
In recent years, there has been a surge of optimism about the prospect of high-tech manufacturing jobs returning to the United States after some headline-grabbing moves, such as Apple’s decision to build its Mac Pro computer in Texas starting in 2013. But they remain outliers in an industry that has outsourced to Asia the making of everything from game consoles to smartphones.
Dear Dr. Pournelle,
My apologies, but the last article I sent you was out of date; it is from 2014. No matter , the article for the current is almost word-for-word the same.
Compared to the last article I sent you from a year ago
It appears that only the dates have changed. We lost a city in 2014. We responded with more advisors and more training. We last Ramadi. So this year we respond with — another 400 soldiers and more training.
This is NOT a recipe for success.
Still, I would prefer finding some way to actually use the people in theater rather than intervene ourselves if at all possible. It’s not American citizens being set fire to, after all , but they’re own people. And if they can’t find it in themselves to fight for their own people, why should we?
The only way to use locals in this situation requires reconquest of the area. The Sunni inhabitants don’t want to be turned over the the Shiite “Iraqi” army. Iraq needs to be dismembered into viable states. That can be done; and then they can be governed by locals, with the consent of the governed. But the only answer to the Caliphate requires force. Of course the Sunni Caliphate has its own view as to who shall govern…
The locals in Central “Iraq” are not going to be conquered by the the Iraqi Army, and “advisors” cannot create a Sunni army inside the Caliphate until it is dismembered.
What I want is not to be involved in the territorial disputes, but it’s a bit late just now: we called the Caliphate into existence when we deposed Saddam.
Freedom is not free. Free men are not equal. Equal men are not free.