a few belligerent conclusions from the belligerent beheading of HitchBOT

First off, I’ll be upfront when I say I didn’t know this was a thing. I didn’t know what/who HitchBOT was/is. So I guess this robot dude has earned the increasingly common human trait that nobody knows/cares who/what you are until you’re brutally slain.

1) HitchBOT was built to see “…can robots trust human beings?” No.

2) Can humans trust robots? No.

3) Can humans trust humans? No.

4) They should have armed HitchBOT with some type of firearm or at least a knife. There were undoubtedly laws or practical reasons this did not happen, but if he’d had like a small revolver maybe he wouldn’t have been beheaded.

5) HitchBOT learned the hard way that America is an incredibly violent place compared to Canada or Europe. According to The Economist, “If America were to release every single prisoner who has not been convicted of killing or raping someone, its incarceration rate would still be higher than Germany’s.” Damn.

6) Of course, of course HitchBOT was taken apart in Philly. If you could have put money on where HitchBOT would be murdered, Philly would have been at the top of my list. Although D-Cell battery stoning would have been the weapon I guessed, not a beheading.

7) HitchBOT says “my love for humans will never fade.” I think HitchBOT’s PR hack wrote this. I’m pretty sure he’s actually really pissed off, seeing as how he got beheaded on vacation and all. Dude’s probably rewatching Terminator and plotting. But then he’ll get all depressed because he’ll realize how inadequate he is compared to Arnold. And they’ll have to put HitchBOT on suicide watch.

8) Why didn’t the guy who beheaded HitchBOT hold him for ransom? It’s not actual kidnapping, and the dude would instantly be the most famous guy on the planet via his entertaining ransom videos posted online. What? Stolen property charges? He’d do six days in jail and then be able to start a lucrative music career as the internet rapper Notorious-Hitch-BOT-Hater.

9) HitchBOT should only blame himself for poor travel safety planning. Follow the rules of smart travel. In places of grave danger, bring a buddy policy, have an escape plan, arm thyself, etc. See note (6).

10) HitchBOT is about to discover the art of modern social media. Just like Cecil, in three weeks, nobody’s going to remember who/what he is.

Hitchbot

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Don’t demand folks do stupid things just because other people are stupid

As you read modern news, more and more you’re confronted with the irrational. Things that just make no sense. Yesterday we confronted humanity’s downfall via the weirdo act of dumping liquid life over your skull. Now let’s dance the arts of demanding upon pain of torture that folks do stupid things.

So Burger King (home of the whopper) intends to buy Tim Hortons (home of the benign) for a ton of molten gold. This would create the planet’s third largest fast food giant behind Subway, McDonalds, and your local zoo’s cafeteria.

As is now common in massive mergers, the bigger company (Burger King) plans to move its combined headquarters to Canada where corporate taxes are lower. This tactic is called a number of things, but “tax inversion” seems the most common term. In other news, Burger King also announced they’d be passing their future corporate tax cost savings onto the average consumer by lowering their prices [insert appropriate laugh track].

The concept is simple. America’s corporate tax is 35%, depending on where you are in Canada, it could be almost 10% lower. So naturally Burger King wants to exist where they pay less tax. And so naturally the applicable politicians are demanding that the CEO of Burger King be strapped to a chair and fed burgers until he expires.

Fleeing your home country to pay less tax is either greedy (Democrats) or unpatriotic (Republicans). Or maybe your opinion of tax inversion depends on what you personally think of Obama or Boehner or Hollywood or falconry. Or maybe your opinion of tax inversion depends on how many episodes of Ellen you watch every week.

Now the federal government has decided that tax inversion must stop. So they’re looking at steps to end it while simultaneously demonizing the companies that engage in it. Some corporations are clearly beginning to feel the heat.

Walgreens just announced that their merger with Boots won’t involve them leaving the country for Switzerland. Probably because leaving the country for Switzerland for tax purposes is just about the worst public relations move you can make.

It’d be like broadcasting to the planet that you want to funnel your tax funds from the taxpayer and directly into some Iranian cleric’s stripper account. For a small fee, of course.

But what’s this really about? Well, like most things nowadays, you can’t talk about this issue without being labeled a Saint or Satan. So we’ll start with facts.

Facts:

– The corporate tax rate for Burger King at its Florida headquarters is 35%

– The corporate tax rate for Tim Hortons at its Ontario headquarters is 26.5%

– Both Burger King and Tim Hortons are public companies

– As public companies they have an obligation to make money for their shareholders

– Both Burger King and Tim Hortons had their stocks skyrocket yesterday upon news of the deal

– People like money

– Folks will follow the path of least resistance to acquire money

– If you try and fight the prior two bullets, expect to encounter problems

But wait, what’s this really about? Well, like most things nowadays, you can’t talk about this issue without being labeled a Saint or Satan. So we’ll also include a story:

Story:

– Like this blog’s degenerate author, you may have spent a significant portion of your childhood getting subjected to mental and physical torture by bigger or wiser kids

– You have one dollar provided to you each day

– You are a part of the hyper-nerd click

– As part of the hyper-nerd click, the bullies charge you a tax rate of 35¢ before lunch

– The boys in the uber-nerd click are charged a bully tax rate of 25¢

– You’re thinking of joining the uber-nerd click so you can keep that extra dime

– But if you do that, the hyper-nerd click will consider you greedy or a turncoat

– What do you do?

If you said you’d stay with the hyper-nerd click and pay the extra dime you’re a liar or a fool.

Oh, the hyper-nerd folks are pissed off at you? Who cares. They’re not your real friends. Why? Because if they were your real friends they’d help you gang up on the bullies to the point that your lunch tax rate was reduced to 25¢.

If they were your friends, they’d help you work the problem. They would not do nothing. And they certainly wouldn’t call you a traitor or a money hound for leaving them.

Think tax inversion is a coincidence? That corporations are just rotten? Things generally don’t just happen. Canada’s corporate tax rate was reduced 13% by Harper’s administration since it took office in 2006. This merger is exactly why they did it. To steal business and tax dollars from America.

What’s that, you think business can be tamed? That you can construct laws and enforcement mechanisms to the point that a company will willingly pay a higher tax because you made it so? Yeah, good luck with that.

Politicians have tried that since Rome. It never works. Why? See our example above. You can’t fight human nature. Folks will follow the path of least resistance to acquire money. It’s in our blood. Sorry.

America’s politicians can whine all they want. They can shout to the heavens in a cynical attempt to grab your vote in November. But the reality is that they are to blame for this. America doesn’t have a tax inversion problem. America has a leadership problem.

America’s corporate tax rate, structure, and implementation are a mess and have been for decades. This is not news to anybody with a brain in Washington. What have they done to fix it? Nothing. And now they want to demand, yes demand, that Burger King do something against its own self-interest to compensate for their failed political leadership? Apologies, I don’t buy it.

If you personally think Burger King is evil for doing this? Fine, I understand, no worries. Go protest outside your local franchise or eat only at McDonalds. That’s your right.

But don’t buy into the trash that’s spoon fed to you buy the morons who want your vote in two months. It’s their fault. 

It’s not effective leadership to demand folks do stupid things just because you’re stupid. Instead, Washington should either do its job or close its mouth. But I suspect it will continue to do neither.

Burger_King

Good morning, one safe, benign Canadian cup of coffee please. Milk and sugar, oh, no thanks, that’s too fierce for me, eh.

Arcturus News Muster – 05 August 2014

Every day we get together in our hovel and produce the finest and most professional news product this side of the Crab Nebula. There are two smart things you should do with this breathtaking creation:

a) Don’t read it; never visit this site again

b) Read it; enjoy yourself

Accomplish both (a) and (b) simultaneously and as a reward my guests will demonstrate upon your brain their version of the mind meld. Warning, unless you desire to spend the majority of a full weekend screaming, I’d advise you to defer this award. Instead, I’ll just buy you a case of beer.

1) Arrest of Canadian couple illustrates consequences of lunacy

The Arcturus Project News

Chinese police officials are deeply concerned by the circumstances of their recent detainment of a Canadian couple suspected of espionage. Kevin and Julia Garratt ran a coffee shop in Dandong, located at the main border crossing with North Korea. The official provincial charging document called their establishment, Peter’s Coffee House, a “running-dog-imperialist-haven of the evil, corrupt, & degenerate West”.

Yet a senior Dandong police official, whose identity we cannot divulge as he was not authorized to speak with the media, expressed caution, “Nothing about this makes sense. Until we know all the facts, we’re treating this with latex beating gloves. Either these two individuals are the dumbest people on the planet, or they’re so damned good at spy craft they make James Bond look like a teenage heroin addict.”

Undaunted by criticism, China’s Foreign Ministry stated the Canadians were “suspected of collecting and stealing intelligence… related to Chinese military targets and important Chinese national defense science research programs”. When asked by reporters how a humble Canadian coffee shop couple could have access to, let alone engage in the theft of such information, a Foreign Ministry spokesman eloquently & methodically responded, “shut your fucking mouth!”

“I just can’t understand how this came about,” said Captain Hindsight of the International Institute for Strategic Studies, “I can think of about a billion places that are safer to conduct your business than the border of freaking North Korea and China. It’s probably safer to set up a liquor stand right next to that al-Baghdadi Caliph guy’s gilded palace”.

The Canadian Embassy in Beijing issued a strongly worded statement, indicative of a country that honored its values and obligation to its citizens, that it stood “ready to provide assistance as required”. Canadian officials are said to be weighing whether it would be considered inappropriate to Chinese officials if Ottawa offered assistance to comp the couple’s solitary confinement costs as a means to increase the possibility that China might purchase additional tar sands oil.

Back in Dandong, the anonymous police official struggled to predict the outcome of the situation, “If they can round up these folks there’s no limit to who they can arrest. On the other hand,” he hesitated, “sometimes you’re such a lunatic, you’re just asking for bad things to happen to you.”

05AUG 1

2) Hack director urinates upon entire generation in order to make his name

The Arcturus Project News

Oscar winds already surround the much anticipated and heralded upcoming World War II film Fury by unknown writer and director David Ayer. Starring leading metrosexual and unemployed housewife phenomenon Brad Pitt the movie intends to show the closing days of the war in a “relentlessly authentic portrayal”.

“What I’m really looking for here is moral equivalency”, said Ayer, “I want to show Americans murdering civilians, executing prisoners, drunk, and generally behaving like a bunch of assholes. Only by portraying them in such a shocking, disgusting way can I stand out and make my name touch upon the tongues of all of Hollywood’s leading power brokers. Because this is how they really want to remember that war anyways.”

Ayer built upon his extensive and relevant combat experience as a sonar operator on a Cold War attack submarine to guide his writing of ordinary men forced to make hard decisions during history’s deadliest war. “When I was in that steel tube, hitting on my bunk mate, eating ice cream and watching movies after watch, I think I really got a good idea of what it was like to stare down the barrel of a Panther’s 88mm gun.”

Fury is grounded in intricate detail, Ayer ensured that all the film’s supporting aspects in camouflage, weapons, and equipment were accurate to the greatest extent possible. A concept found ironic by Tom Brokaw, author of The Greatest Generation, “I spoke to Ayer, know his work, I just don’t understand a movie where you get the uniform pattern right but miss the overall point of the entire war. Remember, they were fighting a hardened enemy that glorified the SS. It was a long, brutal war, up close and personal,” he added. “A number of veterans I interviewed alluded to behavior they weren’t proud of, but neither did they apologize.”

Yet Ayer remained undeterred. “I think it’s really important to show, on screen, a patriotic American brutally murdering an unarmed man. It’s karma. It shows us all how we really are. I want to live in a world where we’re all honest about how we’re all the same. Plus, I want to make a shit ton of cash too, which mandates that I provide as much shock value as possible. It’s like I’m making a horror movie. Every additional chainsaw kill scene I include increases the budget value of the film by $7M.”

Sony officials were deeply concerned that the film might not debut on schedule, however. “We’ve received a number of random threats from unknown individuals”, said one Sony marketing manager, “federal officials are investigating.”

It took TAP News twelve minutes to find one Melvin Anderson of Columbus, Ohio, a 93 year old retired accountant, who offered this brief statement: “Yeah, I threatened his life, I told him if he wanted a demonstration of authentic knife skills, I still had it in me. Or, I can still get behind the turret and ride again. One last time for justice, truth, and honor. I could break him in half with the coaxial gun. It’d be one last kill in the name of glory. Then I can go home in peace.”

05AUG 2

3) French defense contractor STX France to sell surveillance kit to child molesters

The Arcturus Project News

In response to recent announcements that France will not suspend the sale of two Mistral class amphibious assault ships to Russia, and its recent decision to bottom line a contract to sell drones to NAMBLA, The Arcturus Project News sat down with Saint-Nazaire STX France union delegate Christophe Morel for a brief discussion.

The Arcturus Project News: Monsieur Morel thanks for agreeing to speak with us.

M Morel: My pleasure.

TAP: So, let’s go ahead and start with your pro-child airways murder agenda…

MM: [chuckles] I was warned about you, that’s not who we are, we’re in favor of free trade, the middle class, and good hard working jobs.

TAP: And child murder.

MM: [chuckles] That has nothing to do with us, we just make ships here.

TAP: For Vladimir Putin.

MM: For the Russian Navy, the Russian people, and in fact, nothing about these ships has anything do with Ukraine or the Malaysian airliner. The Russian Fleet intends to base them in the Pacific.

TAP: Where they’ll never be able to drive to the Black Sea. Ever. 

MM: We have their word.

TAP: I see.

MM: What’s your problem?

TAP: We have many. Which one are you specifically referring to?

MM: Britain gets rich off Russian bankers and German machine tool makers love the Moscow market, but you pick on us?

TAP:  You’re selling warships to a brutal aggressive dictator. The banker thing isn’t quite the best idea, but you’re off the edge. It’s like providing flamethrowers to the SS.

MM: That’s ridiculous. President Putin’s body count is nowhere near as high at Hitler’s.

TAP: …

MM: Something like 8,000 people make a living off this deal. They have families. What would you say to them?

TAP: Sorry, you can’t butter your bread with cash you got from Satan’s acolyte.

MM: That’s not good enough!

TAP: Why not?

MM: They’re not even warships, they’re like big ferries. They only have a few weapons onboard.

TAP: They introduce mechanized Russian Marine brigades ashore onto hostile shores.

MM: Exactly! So you see, this has nothing to do with Ukraine. Russia is not attacking Ukraine’s shores. And a ship didn’t shoot down the Malaysian airliner.

TAP: You’re just as delusional and foolish as your forefathers who supported Vichy.

MM: You pig! What would you have us do, we need jobs!

TAP: Don’t sell kit to evil.

MM: [hysterical laughter] Don’t you understand how the world works? We need to eat, we don’t give a fuck about Ukraine or the airliner. If it comes between my rich union job, and all of Eastern Europe? Let Putin nuke them all! I need work.

TAP: Then what about the news that you’re selling the video equipment and drones to pedophiles?

MM: Jobs are jobs you dick. Pedophiles need drones to track small vulnerable children. We need jobs. It’s win, win.

TAP: The breadth of your evil is instructional.

MM: Everybody’s got a price. Mine was $1B per warship. You have one too! I assure you.

TAP: Not a chance.

MM: Oh yeah, how about it? We checked up on you. We want your guests to put some of their advanced weaponry on the first ship. Then we can jack up the Russian price to $2B. You take a cut. Name that cut.

TAP: Not interested.

MM: You don’t care about Ukraine either…

TAP: Not true…

MM: What do you even do for a living? You’re just a shitty blog author. It’s time to get into the real games of life, fool. Time to make your mark and stop ranting in textual form to a bunch of folks you don’t even know.

TAP: …

MM: …

The Arcturus Project News is pleased to announce the creation of The Arcturus Project Shipbuilding. In collaboration with STX France the company will focus upon advanced shipboard weaponry. The newly designed “Arc Matrix” technology will allow the owner of the new Mistral ship (whoever that might be) to concentrate his or her enemies in a specific location where they can be controlled, counted, and things can be done to them in an efficient, orderly, and cost effective manner. Union delegates from STX France are thrilled and will join The Arcturus Project Shipbuilding in a celebratory mind meld bash at an undisclosed location in the Sahara desert. Said STX France union delegate Morel, “We’re so excited to celebrate this new collaborative venture. We can’t wait to see what this party has in store for us!”

05AUG 3

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-28654125

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/03/movies/fury-starring-brad-pitt-a-raw-look-at-warfare.html?_r=0

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/22/world/europe/a-french-port-welcomes-an-intervention-by-russias-military.html?_r=0