nature doesn’t love us

This morning contained a nice, quiet, blue-gray dawn sky as my dogs did their thing. I enjoyed it. But then on my journey to evil cubicle, I heard on the news we’ve got the birth of our first hurricane of the season. And so nature’s decided to remind everybody just exactly who’s running things.

These planetary death machines generate the energy equivalent of a hydrogen bomb about every six minutes. The planet laughs at our own feeble attempts to destroy ourselves. Wherever a hurricane wants to go, it’ll go, and if it so desires it’ll lay waste to everything in its path. All we can do is run and rebuild.

Nature doesn’t love us. It might be beautiful, give us joy, or show us our purpose in life. But try having a chat with a grizzly bear and you’ll get reminded that the love is not necessarily reciprocated. Or try running from an earthquake. The planet is amused by this as you stumble about, unable to find your footing, as if wasted on tequila.

Why do we put up with this? Maybe we should fight back? Go hit a tree with a bat? Or discharge a firearm in the direction of an oncoming hurricane? To quote everyday-working-man Charles Montgomery Burns:

 

master burns

“Oh, so Mother Nature needs a favor. Well, maybe she should have thought of that when she was besetting us with droughts and floods and poison monkeys. Nature started the fight for survival, and now she wants to quit because she’s losing. Well, I say hard cheese.”

 

I once heard on a documentary that weather, as in hurricanes, is nothing more than the planet’s attempt to equalize conditions throughout the globe. When you stop and think about this, in a dark-cynical way common to my unhinged-freak mind, if nature was really interested in equalizing the planet’s conditions? If it could, it might equalize us out of existence.

But it can’t, so at least we’ve got that going for us. Hey speaking of erasing humans from existence, do any other childhood losers similar to me remember the genocide ending to Final Fantasy VII? Do you remember that? That after spending countless hours of your young life and all along you didn’t know that “victory” entailed liquidating the human race? It was like waking up and realizing you were wearing an SS Stormtrooper uniform.

It has come to my attention while reading of a possible remake of the game that there are actually people who claim the ending of said game did not involve mass extinction of the race. This is lunacy. The game’s message was quite clear. They meant exactly what they said. The Gaia concept is all over the game. It’s also explicitly referred to in the movie which Hironobu Sakaguchi wrote and directed himself.

 

genocide

attention haters; kindly point out to me, the location of the humans in this scene?

 

I’m no doctor or scientist, but when you really think about what the Gaia folks are saying, it essentially devalues the human race (you) to nothing more than an expendable biological organism that is part of the greater whole. So why shouldn’t the planet be able to kill you?

I guarantee you there’s at least one doctor or scientist on this planet who so believes in this concept that they’re, right this very second, trying to find a way to kill us all, 12 Monkeys style. It is for this reason I don’t post my Guests’ contact info anywhere.

This stuff is all rather creepy. The idea that our greatest threat might not be hydrogen bombs, or hurricanes, or climate change, or nature in general; but rather, criminally insane but smart people who subscribe to the concept that the greatest threat to us, to the planet, is us.

Sooner or later they’re going to (hopefully) arrest a person who’s trying to do this before he/she succeeds. And we’ll all be shocked at how close they came. When they catch this dude, we need to be sure to reinstitute medieval style public executions.

Because, seriously, whatever. This is our home. God / Nature / Ham Sandwich put us on this planet to live long and prosper. And so we need to do exactly that.

And when the hurricanes or earthquakes come we have to endure them like we always have. But rather than firing a handgun at a tornado, perhaps we should also try and give some love back to nature. Even though nature doesn’t love us. Call it tough love, I guess? After all, I still got to see that beautiful dawn this morning. So thanks Nature.

 

danny

BRING IT ON!!!

the current sadness of American politics

I’m pretty sure if the Founder Fathers are boozing it up in Valhalla right now, that they’re also shouting, overturning tables, and generally pissed off with what they’re observing.  Everybody seems inclined to pick a side.  I refuse to pick a side when it seems both sides are in the same business of destroying us all.

Obama took to the stage today to say such encouraging things as:

“Many of the same people who made the case for war with Iraq are now opposing the Iran deal…”

“I am not saying this to be provocative,” Obama said. “I am stating a fact . . . the choice we have is some kind of war, maybe not tomorrow, maybe not in three months, but soon.”

I’m pretty sure he said all of these things to be provocative.   And so, a guy who came to Washington to apparently change Washington, has fallen victim at every point to the typical unhelpful Washington tactic, demonize your opponents, at every opportunity.  I tend to, somewhat, give Obama the benefit of the doubt in that he may not have been this way before 2008.  But surely, at this point, he’s as much a part of the problem as anybody else.

On the other side we have a circus which would make a medieval bazaar look tame.  Tonight, 10 people are going to “debate” for the honor of leading the free world.  And by debate I mean they’ll answer canned questions by hack reporters trying to play “gotcha” while they read off sound bites in an attempt to get noticed for that key “one-liner”.  In other words, the very definition of style over substance.

I think Trump’s a fringe goon unfit to lead a lemonade stand.  And I wouldn’t vote for him.  But I truly hope he completely detonates tonight’s debate format.  It’s truly a farce, a disgusting way to pick a presidential candidate.  But there will be 27 more of them run by both parties before the election.  Swell.

But soon, Trump will be gone.  And then the other side will have their own debate using the same format.  And then eventually we’ll have an election to pick the next person who gets the honor to become president, go to Washington, and demonize their opponents without conducting anything reasonable.  Gee, isn’t it all great.  What’s not to be excited about!  [waves American flag; while wearing 11 campaign buttons; singing America the Beautiful; drunk; in an unlit basement]

And nothing will change.  The Founding Fathers will still shout from Valhalla.  And the rest of us not involved in politics will still hope these idiots somehow don’t manage to destroy us all.

debatestage

textbook picture Circa 2345 describing the key reasons for the downfall of the Republic

we welcome the introduction of “killer robots”

So all these smart scientists and engineers don’t want the planet to develop artificial intelligence killer robots?  Why?  What’s not to like?  What do all those brilliant and accomplished folks know anyways?

And in any case, it’s already happened.  Multiple militaries have developed autonomous or semi-autonomous weapons that have essentially taken human thought, emotion, and morals out of the kill loop for years.  Just ask your former Pakistani terrorist neighbor who was forced into permanent retirement after an unrelated pickup truck accident.

We welcome this killer robot development.  For you see:

 

– With robots it’ll be so much easier for professional politicians to start and sustain needless wars as a substitute for reasonable / rational thought since they won’t be putting their own soldiers at risk

– Allows Hollywood to continue to produce C-grade action flicks based on paranoid but entertaining technological concepts invented well before the Internets was even a blink in anybody’s eye

– Favored by my Guests as they believe the unbridled use of murdering robots will let human stupidity “do our required prep work for us”

– Presages a paradise Earth future where wise logical robots can make all our key decisions for us; hell, as long as they provide me an ample supply of beer and kibble for my dogs, they can go ahead and liquidate whoever they want

– Allows MMA, boxing, and other martial sports to be replaced by robot fights, which we could hold on the freaking Moon to create increased buzz prior to fight night; hint – place much money on the vicious fighting seizure robots from Japan

– Will result in the word “irony” being tattooed on the gravestone of the human race as we’re swallowed by our own creation; even as we somehow managed not to completely destroy ourselves following five-thousand years of near constant war

– Why should I get my own beer, when the killer robot can get it for me? if said robot can wield a handgun, he can carry a beer; eh, as long as he doesn’t actually kill me when he gets there

– Let the robot walk my dogs while I drink said beer; and then the robot can contemplate its place on Earth as it routinely carries little baggies of dog feces

– Robot can be consumed in its own everpresent and ultimately debilitating existential crisis as it gathers its wits to determine its “place in this universe” while culling the human flock

– Machines can build spaceships, give humanity the finger, and fly off into space to build a better life in the belief that “none of you humans are worth the effort of killing”

ai-terminator-300x252

Hail Robots!

Japan is debating the wrong issue

It’s been 70 years since Imperial Japan walked itself into a bar room brawl it couldn’t win. And everybody remains chasing ghosts. China and South Korea still won’t talk to Japan on a reasonable level, in large part because Shinzo Abe can’t choose to spend some of his off time playing Pachinko instead of crawling around Yasukuni.

And today’s Diet debate has brought to a head the obscure local concepts of collective-self-defense, constitutionalism, pacifism, and so on. It’s all part of Abe’s effort to make Japan a “normal nation” again. For the majority of the Japanese people who want no part of this, it’s about defending 70 years of prosperity and not pointlessly starting vicious bar room brawls.

It’s the push and pull of a culture struggling with the reality of an increasingly withdrawn America. Poland, Saudi Arabia, and Japan are all starting to realize they have to do more themselves. The difference is none of these other countries have the historical baggage Japan does. A significant portion of Japan’s population quite literally despise their own history. All you have to do is carefully watch two or three old Japanese golden-age movies to figure this out.

I could talk about this defense / historical discussion for four hours, but honestly, I can’t get past the idea that Japan is debating the wrong issue. The future of Japan is not going to be about collective-self-defense, constitutionalism, pacifism, and so on. The future of Japan is demographics.

By 2050 Japan’s population will have declined by 1/3. Nearly one out of every two Japanese will be over the age of 65. No country on Earth has ever gone through such a transition before. It’ll literally reshape Japan as we know it.

How will this change society? The culture? The people? And most importantly, how will Japan pay for all of this?

They should be talking about this in the Diet, in yakatori houses, Pachinko parlors, and on street corners. But the best they can seem to manage is the occasional dialogue on how many Philippine nurses are allowed in to work in nursing homes.

I don’t have an answer for this problem. At this point nobody does. But China is not Japan’s biggest threat. Nor is Japan’s history the biggest concern that should drive the future. Demographics is going to determine Japan’s path. Until Abe, the Diet, and the country tackle this, everything else is a sideshow.

diet debate

wrong topic

outrage is now apparently the taste of victory

Great news! Your team just won. It’s a moment to celebrate glorious victory on the soccer / football field / pitch. You have many choices available on how you’ll enjoy this wonderful moment:

 

 a) Drink lots of beer with family and friends in an unbridled moment of enjoyable life

 b) Calmly read a book with your mate, pausing repeatedly to contemplate how lucky you were to get to see your team win

 c) Viciously parse random social media comments and shout loudly about how outraged you are that somebody wrote something that bothers you

 

Yeah, I know! I’d choose (a) or (b) too, and, oh, what, [unintelligible muttering] I’ve chosen (c)? When? [unintelligible muttering] But I did (a) and (b) last night. Doesn’t that count? [shakes head] [unintelligible muttering] Oh.

Once upon a time social justice warriors and the news media had pretty awesome causes to get behind. You could go to Alabama and do battle against goons who’d turn fire hoses onto people based upon the color of their skin. Or you could go to Nazi Germany and work against those guys who were too focused on mathematics and spreadsheets to realize what horrible fucking people they were.

You can do these things today too. For instance, you could go to Lebanon and deliberately cover the mass human misery and help millions in desperate need of support. Or you could go to Baltimore and cover the grinding day-to-day (not a single brief week) of how hard it is to live in America’s urban wastelands.

But why do any of this hard stuff when you can spend your time parsing somebody’s tweet and get mad at its content. After all, solving ISIS or urban America is awfully hard. Eh, whatever, let’s do nothing of actual value. Let’s sit behind a desk and trash free speech. It’s much easier that way.

I, of course, do this too. But the difference between me and somebody who works for the BBC or Washington Post is I don’t get paid for this. Plus, they’re on the nagging side. And I’m on the anti-nagging side. I want people to be free to say whatever they want, whenever they want, however they want. Their ilk literally wants to control human thought.

Two lunatic events to this end:

The Washington Post thinks this tweet is the most offensive thing England has done since the vicious firebombing of Dresden #BomberHarris #toosoon:

 

“Our #Lionesses go back to being mothers, partners and daughters today, but they have taken on another title – heroes: …”

 

Activist, journalist, and stormy-cloud-frowny-face-man Ishaan Tharoor, who used to be a senior editor at Time and a Yale man (must be a coincidence) called this a “sexist tweet”.

But what if I alter this tweet a little and make it say this:

 

“Our #Lions go back to being fathers, partners and sons today, but they have taken on another title – heroes: …”

 

To which my point is: What’s the fucking problem?

Is it illegal for us to refer to these female humans for what they are? I’m pretty sure every female player on the England team is somebody’s daughter. Quite a few of them are mothers too. Maybe we need to sanitize this speech to the point it sounds like a faceless machine wrote it.

After all, isn’t the term “lionesses” sexist too? Doesn’t that imply that female athletes can’t be male lions? Isn’t the fact that we say a female human can’t be a male lion the most offensive English anti-feminist thing since King Arthur beat (alleged) his wife over an (alleged) adulterous act? The BBC doesn’t seem to think so (surprisingly). The term’s plastered all over their website.

Whatever, I got my Guests to write this very, very professional tweet:

 

“Our #humans go back to being humans, workers and oxygen consumers today, but they have taken on another title – winners of the game: …”

 

See how much safer and kinder this tweet is. If only all our speech sounded this way. Then nobody would ever say anything valuable or fun ever again. Think of how awesome that world would be.

Next up is the BBC who (not surprisingly) raises the issue of how many low-class-haters took to the airwaves to use the term Pearl Harbor in conjunction with the Japanese loss.

Apparently, poking fun at history is horribly offensive and juvenile. What kind of insensitive pig would do something like that? Well, me. This is what I posted prior to the game’s start on an unrelated social media platform:

 

On July 5th, 1942 USS Growler torpedoed IJNS Arare and two other destroyers off Kiska or 2,527 miles from today’s stadium. Here’s hoping for an anniversary repeat. ‪#‎theystartedit ‪#‎toosoon”

 

But what if I alter this tweet a little and make it say this:

 

“On August 8th, 1942 Admiral Mikawa’s forces torpedoed and sank four Allied crusiers off Guadalcanal or 6,140 miles from today’s stadium. Here’s hoping for an anniversary repeat. #longlance #youstarteditoilembargo #toosoon”

 

To which my point is: What’s the fucking problem?

If we as a human race cannot laugh and tell jokes (even offensive jokes) about the most horrible war in human history, we’ll rapidly discover that humor no longer exists and we’re just a bunch of boring losers.

Somebody needs to get Tharoor and the BBC a bunch of beers and watch them drink until they calm down. Then they can just simply celebrate victory with the rest of us. They should try it now and again. They’d sleep better at night.

Normally I wouldn’t care, except that Tharoor and the BBC are powerful enough that people who actually matter are going to listen to them and further do what they can to control our speech.

It’s going to get to the point that anybody, anywhere is going to be afraid to tweet or say like, things, or anything at all, because they’ll be too afraid that what they say is offensive to somebody, somewhere, over something.

And what we can / cannot say will be dictated to us by an elite BBC woman and super-elite Yale man; upon pain of outrage and social ostracism. I fear this world. For when it arrives, it’s going to be a freaking miserable nightmare.

As an example, I almost, almost didn’t post my Kiska thing because I thought it’d offend people or folks would think it too juvenile. But I did it anyway. I’m glad I did.

stormy

The Arcturus Project’s Weekly (Not Weekly) Stormy Cloud Award goes to His Ivy League Eminence Ishaan Tharoor. Smart Yale man you might be, but wise you are not. Do you get it? I did a thing there.

requiring the permission of strangers to turn on a ceiling fan; and other ways our homes are no longer ours

For the uninitiated, in America a Homeowner’s Association (HOA) or similar construct is an evil organization bent upon world domination through regulation of the style and manner in which your bushes are trimmed. In that sense, they have similar priorities to the always delightful, Sturmabteilung or Nazi Brownshirts.

For the uninitiated, who haven’t learned history because it’s not taught anymore, the Brownshirts were another evil organization bent upon world domination through regulation of the style and manner of clown nose coloring, tap water purity, the rules of chess, mass genocide, and the process by which one acquired permission to don footwear.

brownshirts

Bringing peace and enlightenment to the people; one broken window at a time.

Anyways, way back when after a HOA embarked upon a six month ordeal to force my parents to change the color of their shed, I’ve been of the strong opinion that HOAs are nothing more than an excuse for parasites to add luster to their otherwise pathetic lives by holding power over their fellow human beings, aka their own neighbors.

The guy in my next door cubicle at day job is a HOA president. So I get the joy of hearing his frequent used car salesmen back door scheming on daily HOA management. I wouldn’t trust this dude to hold my coffee for six seconds. And yet, please pardon the vulgarity, I think his voice sounds so weird after one of his HOA phone calls that he likely has an erection inside the cubicle.

So when I bought my current shoebox home, I tried my best to stay away from HOAs. But bizarrely, in modern America if you want a neighborhood without an active HOA you need to be willing to pay more. I couldn’t afford it. And so, $50 of my money each month goes to fund an organization whose sole purpose is to destroy me.

Ostensibly, the HOA’s purpose is grounds management, keeping the neighborhood looking nice, and otherwise maintaining order. This way that one annoying neighbor can’t leave an RV camper on their lawn for months at a time. However, in practice HOAs fuel a racket of lawyers, corporations, and white collared goons who are in it to make money.

The corporate behemoth running the day-to-day actions of my HOA does business in two dozens states as a full blown LLC. Because nothing says local democratic government and quaint neighborhoods like paying the Giant Octopus to cut the twelve square yards of public grass that border you property.

The former overlord running our HOA used to lead, to put it mildly, with a rather disengaged hand. Folks would literally leave garbage on their lawns. Eh, I kind of live in a rough neighborhood.

Just last night somebody emptied all six rounds from a likely large frame revolver into the woods out back. I hear gunfire all the time and so I don’t call the cops anymore. Why go to the gun range when the woods at 11pm work just fine? Sure enough, this morning there wasn’t a body out there. I think.

And so, if I have to dodge garbage while walking my dog(s)? Oh well. I bitch about it, but it’s not a big deal. Particularly given that I know what an active / engaged HOA is capable of.

And sure enough, we got a new HOA president. And she was active / engaged. I caught her roaming the neighborhood in her clown car with a note pad. She’d drive a few feet, stop, open her car door, stare at her neighbors’ homes, and take notes. While I walked by her with my dog(s) she wouldn’t even make eye contact with me. She knew what she was doing.

And sure enough, then the entire neighborhood got flooded with “violation” notices. The garbage still litters the lawns. But apparently my bushes needed trimming (true). And, my entire freaking driveway needed replacement. Yeah, the entire driveway.

Why? Because she said so. The violation notice simply instructed me to replace my driveway within 60 days or face fines. No explanation as to why. Good luck with that, lady. I’ll sue first.

And when I replied in formal letter requesting clarification? Eh, no reply. So we’ll see if I hear from them after the 60 day clock runs out. Maybe she’s just overwhelmed with responses to all the paperwork she generated.

And then I’m walking my dog(s) yesterday and I see her latest idea. Behold the power of waste and general sadness! See if you can figure out what’s wrong here:

insanity

1) Now our cool little tree and flower circle has been surrounded by a trio of no parking signs

2) For a garden circle that is geometrically impossible to park around

3) On a dead end street that houses no consistent traffic

4) For a circle that I’ve never seen anybody park around for two years

5) When our neat flowers and cute little tree are now surrounded by steel, signs, order, and sadness

 

They say absolute power corrupts absolutely. But it’s rather hard to execute absolute power when you’re a darn moron who has as much common sense as a Brownshirt goon on meth.

I fear this is the future of the American home. The needless signs surrounding the tree. Home isn’t your home. The HOA owns you. The bank owns your mortgage. Via property taxes, you effectively only rent your home from the government. Even your local utility wants to hook up smart meters which empower them to turn off certain appliances at their decision, not yours.

dog

Happy non-contrarian canine wonders why beloved Daddy bothers to think and write about stuff that might not matter.

And so the future of the free American’s home will require the permission of strangers to turn on a ceiling fan.

Maybe it’s just a continuation of history’s reality. Through most of the human race’s great adventure, folks have never really been free or owned their homes, their land, their lives. So who are we to think differently?

We live in a modern society so controlling that entire arms of our culture are committed to telling you what you can / cannot say, think, eat, drink, smoke, vote, believe, and so on. So why not all of these things, and then some, even when you’re inside your own home?

It’s very troubling to me. It makes me fear what kind of home my kids, God willing, will live. Will they look back on my tale of their grandparents shed color debacle and be like, “Oh, that’s so minor compared to what it’s like today.”

Will freedom, the home, the joy of choosing your own path just slowly erode away? And those who come after us won’t even know what it was like. What it was like to live free before the age when a total stranger could order you around in your home? Just because they felt like it?

Or maybe my dog(s) is right. And I’m off my senses. And one day I’ll be wearing a tin foil hat mumbling to strangers about the Brownshirts. Eh, we’ll see.

stormy

The Arcturus Project’s Weekly (Not Weekly) Stormy Cloud Award goes to Her Eminence HOA President #457.2b. I won’t give in lady; there’s nothing wrong with my driveway; I’ll see you in court if necessary.