Sunday, July 23, 2017

Japan and Phillipines Need to Cough Up $$$


One thing Trump was right about, although he will never follow through on the point, was that our foreign partners need to cough up money to pay for our defense of them. It isn't right that Japan sits on its laurels while we pay for their defense. And as for the Phillipines, the bloodthirsty thug down there should be presented with a fee for protection. Foreign aid should be ended outright, and foreign fees should be assessed instead. It is about time that other nations help the U.S. pay down the national debt. It isn't right that the Republicans go spending more on defense and then saddle future generations with paying it off. The foreign nations that benefit from this military spending should be paying for the debt.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Mexico, a Kleptocracy


No one in their right mind would visit Mexico after this story, on top of all the drug cartel nonsense, corruption and pollution in that country.

Friday, July 21, 2017

South Africa Going Down the Tubes


When I was a boy, I fervently believed apartheid was wrong and thought the white South Africans were bad. Now it turns out, the black South Africans are just as bad. They elected corrupt Zuma to power, and right now there is talk about seizing all the white-owned farms by violence and giving them to blacks. Racism is alive and well in South Africa, and it is practiced by the blacks. Do the right thing by them, and they come to your door to behead you and seize all your property. Look at what happened over in Zimbabwe--white farmers got beheaded, their land seized, and police did nothing. Zimbabwe experienced hyperinflation, corruption, people getting killed and no rule of law. Everybody lost in that scenario. The black Africans have exhibited a tendency toward despotism, crime and corruption. That seems to be all they know to do with themselves. The only reason Africa ever had a half-way stable republic was that the mean old racist Europeans came down there and bestowed the gifts of advanced technology, republicanism, and rule of law. If South Africa goes the way of Zimbabwe, which it probably will, then that will be a signal to the whole world as to their self-governing capabilities. I see an Africa emerging with despots in every direction, beholden to China and Saudi Arabia, with incessant wars, terrorism, pollution and corruption. Too bad for any endangered species living down there. Once the lions and tigers and elephants die out, there won't be much interest in traveling to that continent anymore, because people would rather see an elephant on TV than a native. Also never understood the "sponsor a child" charity for Africa. "Sponsor birth control" would have been more effective at reducing hunger and a thousand other maladies. People that have sufficient resources are the ones that should reproduce. Just doing it without a thought to the future is irresponsible.

The Clintons


The Clintons really lowered the bar in ethics and prepared the citizenry for the Trump abomination. I think the Clintons do share some of the blame. True, Republicans exaggerated a great deal, but I am of the opinion that where there is smoke, there is fire, and as a point of fact, Bill and Hillary used a lot of weasel words and half-truths and also untruths in their defense of how they made a living. It would have been better to have been poor and wear homemade dresses rather than smart fashions. It would have been better to drive a Toyota Camry and live in a modest three-bedroom home. I think the American people really would have rallied behind the Clintons, if there had not been the taint of corruption. Of course, with Trump, the taint has become the stench. But it is difficult for goodness to be seen as good, when it has sullied itself and decayed from white to gray. Many can tell white from black, but not as many see the difference between gray and black.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Air BNB


I got tired of getting burned by Indians or Pakis running these run-down little motels on the highway. These immigrants do not speak good English. They actually hate Americans. They employ bait-and-switch, advertising one price and then charging a higher one. They have nasty little surprises to inconvenience the unwary traveler. They invest nothing in their business, and their motels look shoddier and shoddier, like the third-world country they come from.

Enough of these shady "entrepreneurs" that just want to take advantage of the weary traveler.

I'm not renting hotels or motels any longer. Air BNB all the way, baby!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Nelsan Ellis


Nelson Ellis died of alcohol withdrawal. I think it is a good thing that the family was open about the cause of death. People need to get over the notion that alcohol is harmless. Alcohol kills living cells. The chemistry and biology is crystal clear. What is not so clear is why lawmakers decided that the one recreational substance to make legal would be the deadly poison, alcohol.

I watched all of True Blood, and in it, Ellis was indeed a good actor. He made the most of a bad script, which was the only thing holding him back. The story itself was pretty stupid, as were everybody's lines. I watched it mainly because the acting was pretty good. True Blood is a bunch of good (and good-looking) actors making the most out of a bad script. The music, special effects and camerawork were good too. I am always attracted by depictions of the supernatural.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Firefox Goes AntiSec


I used to be a Mozilla evangelist, preaching Firefox to the masses, but nowadays Firefox has aligned its star with that of Yahoo, the worst search engine on the planet, which serves up malware and spam to the unsuspecting. Just do a search for Dell drivers and see what comes up. The way to get a computer user infected is to set his default search engine to Yahoo. I can no longer in good conscience recommend Firefox for security reasons. What other reason would there be? And as for me installing Firefox on client systems, why should I spend extra time reconfiguring Firefox to do what it should do by default in the first place--namely, search Google, not Yahoo. Alas, Firefox has lost its way, squandering precious dev time on pointless projects reminiscent of Don Quixote, like Pockets. Wiser would have been to incorporate Thunderbird into Firefox and build real functionality into its browser that would beat its competitors. But perhaps that required too much creativity out of poor little Mozilla. Well then, welcome to the dustheap of browsers. Care to make the acquaintance of Netscape Navigator?

The New Vice: Gas Stations


The way to promote electric vehicles is easy--create an environment where there are plenty of electric recharge stations and less gas stations. There are far too many gas stations at the moment. You eliminate approval for new gas stations right off the bat. That is the first thing. Then, increase the business license fee for each gas station by 2% per year, with no end in sight, but with a waiver for those gas stations that offer electric recharging stations in addition to gas pumps. Then, increase direct taxes on gas by 2% per year. All of this extra revenue can help to pay off the U.S. deficit, instead of being spent. I don't believe any incentives are wise. Just increase taxation on "vice", which gas is nowadays, in a similar category as cigarettes, booze, and pot.

The trouble with Republicans is they talk about wanting to reduce the deficit, but only when it comes to programs for the poor and the middle class. In reality, the Republicans want to spend all the money they can on their two love birds, the military and the rich. Tax breaks for the rich, and at the same time big increases to buy expensive toys from the defense industry, which means huge bonuses and cost overruns and the usual corruption, negligence and lack of oversight that allows Republican cronies to get richer without breaking a sweat. That's the real reason Republicans want the increased defense spending, because it is a way to spirit off vast quantities of moolah from the U.S. treasury.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Adobe is FUBAR


I am familiar with three Adobe products: the abominible security hole known as the Flash player, Adobe Acrobat-out-of-Hell, and Photosh**.

Acrobat won't print .pdf's half the time and does not even have the common courtesy of giving the user an error message when it fails to print an ordinary, humdrum .pdf to an ordinary, humdrum printer. You know, with a PDF editor, printing is kind of a big deal. I have been on the phone with Adobe tech support for hours. They do not know what time of day it is. It is time for Adobe to stop publishing software and go bankrupt. That is what time of day it is.

My, how I wish market forces were even half as efficient as Republicans think they are! That would be a good thing.

As for Photosh**, it won't work on half the graphics cards out there, and won't tell the user why, either. Just very user-unfriendly, slow and sluggish, and rather irresponsible of Adobe to stop supporting graphics cards that are less than fifteen years old. Come on, not everybody has the cash to buy a new system every five years. That would include businesses and government as well. Desktops are built to last a long time and should last a long time. That is one of the many things desktops are good at.

I am not sure what sort of lame-brain computer programmers Adobe has working for it. I think they are using spaghetti code a mile-long coded by morons twenty or thirty years ago and patched a little bit year by year by an ever-changing base of employees until they don't know what does what or how. I think if you asked every Adobe developer in existence to fix the problem with printing in Acrobat, they could not do it, even given a year, because they don't know how to fix it, or fixing it will break fifty other things, because the dirty secret in Adobe is that their code is FUBAR. The only reason printing ever works at all is probably because of accidental bugs. I have seen spaghetti code, worked with it, reformed it (or tried to), and I know what it is like. That's what's wrong with Adobe. A mile of legacy spaghetti code, with no veterans around to figure it out.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Canada Got It Right


Fixing health care is easy. All the Republicans need to do is look North. Canada got it right.

But no, they won't adopt Canada's system, and why? Because the penny-pinching bean-counters want to leave the middle-class saddled with an inadequate, complicated and confusing maze of health care insurance. As for the poor, let the chips fall where they may, seems to be the motto. I suppose it is ironic that those who don't believe in Evolution seek to practice it upon their fellow Americans.

Ironically Scared of Death


I don't understand those on death row making clemency requests based on the convicted killer's mental status, upbringing, hardships in life, or just because an attorney thinks the death penalty is bad.

If a man kills another person, it is a bit rich that he objects to society exacting justice. Scared of death? Grow a pair, I'd say. Easy to pull that trigger--not so easy to be on the other side, eh?

If people object so much to the death penalty, one option I would support is that these folks personally pay 100% of the cost of incarcerating the killer for life, as well as the cost of reparations to all victims' families, the exact amount to be determined by the victims at their own discretion. If the victims want millions, then that's what the death penalty opponent should pay. Billions or trillions would most likely exclude any possibility for parole, although perhaps collections could be taken among all the death penalty opponents in the world. I'd like to see the first victim-trillionaire.

I also believe those opposed to abortion should pay 100% of the cost of raising those fetuses that would otherwise be aborted. They can pay for college, as well, at a four-year institution of the parents' choice. That would probably run to about a million dollars. I say cough up the money, if abortion is so bad. Get a second job moonlighting at McDonald's.

What we don't have in the world at this time is any shortage of human beings. The number being generated far outnumbers the number lost through the death penalty or through abortion, and it could be argued, the quality gained is better than that lost. If a mother seriously wants to off her offspring, if that is her final choice, then she probably was not about to give birth to a rocket scientist, a saint or a great leader. Daddy must not have been all that great, is the most likely conclusion. Never a good scenario for a kid to grow up unwanted. And there are killers a-plenty in the world, and offing a few here and there through the death penalty is not going to keep this world from turning. If a killer's death brings a small measure of solace to the victims, or relief that they won't have to attend any parole hearings, so much the better.
techlorebyigor is my personal journal for ideas & opinions