Where There's A William

there's always aweigh

Archive for the category “farce”

Strategy Is Amoral (which is why it works so well)

Via Aaron Clarey’s Captain Capitalism blog comes notice of this Seattle, Washington news story presented by NBC TV network affiliate King5.

“No pictures taken; no questions asked”, regarding who turned in the gun to the police-run collection point being the relevant point of interest here.

Got an annoying neighbor or co-worker?  Ex-spouse working you over in the courts?  You get the idea, I’m sure; here’s your chance to be a criminal mastermind with the Seattle PD’s willing assistance!

Some effort on your part will be necessary of course (it’s strategy, not socialist economic policy).  There’s the whole delicate issue of timing to be considered, not to mention the basic premise of there being no direct witness to the act (and if you can’t arrange matters thus and so, the word you want is “fantasy” not strategy), but if killing someone and getting away with it is an as-yet un-crossed off entry on your personal bucket list, then January 23 – 25 next in Seattle, Washington is your destination of choice.

Wash well after the fact, present your anonymous self to a collection point with a well-wiped down (and unloaded) gun the morning of the 26th January, and the evidence vanishes into the police supervised smelter directly thereafter.

Celebrate your success by giving the gift card to some smelly beggar deserving poor person on your way back home.  If it needs to be said, Amazon is putting up the seed money along with the gift cards; do you really think they can’t associate a particular card to a specific customer transaction should SPD make inquiry later?  Come on, Moriarty!

Strategy works.  It works in pretty much direct correlation to the degree of minimal intellect and attention span you can bring to any outcome you work to achieve.  To stretch a metaphor only slightly; tools are often not up to the task to which they are put … and whose fault is that?  Getting a Seattle (or virtually any other, really) politician to admit to their strategic mistakes, however, is a matter for another post entirely.

All you proto-Dexters rejoice and start planning your itinerary.

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Going For The Gold

Via Drudge I learn from this AP story that some private US domestic organisation claims to have “stripped” Lance Armstrong of all of his 7 Tour de France titles – an authority actually exercised by the International Cycling Union.  The USADA also claims authority to revoke an International Olympic Committee authorized Bronze Medal awarded to Armstrong for his (carefully drug monitored) performance in the 2000 Olympics, as well as “… any awards, event titles and cash earnings.”

I think I begin to smell a motive for all this.

If the USADA does succeed in claiming for it’s own all of Lance Armstrong’s “earnings” over the course of his sports career, how much of his cancer foundations monies (reportedly some $500+ million) count as his earnings?

Talk about going for the gold.

Arrest That Man!

Over at Joe Huffman’s place, a really intriguing question gets a look:

David Hardy says there are options to be considered now that Holder has been found in contempt of Congress:

The House sends out its Sergeant-at-Arms to arrest the defendant, he is tried on the spot, and the House decides whether to convict.

It is a little bit of a surprise to me but the Capital has a dungeon just for such purposes. And I find it interesting and very pleasing that:

…presidential pardons appear not to apply to civil contempt procedures such as inherent contempt because it is not an “offense against the United States” or an offense against “the dignity of public authority.”

A commenter at the David Hardy link above suggests that leaving AG Holder out of durance vile would be a better strategy, but I think I disagree.  The advantage of asking Holder himself, “what did the president know and when did he know it”, isn’t measurably more effective than is responding to efforts to obtain his release with the same query I think.

One added attraction of sending out the Sergent-at-Arms of the House (with as many Capitol Police as needed for back-up) to arrest the AG is the really strong potential for all the various DOJ gun toters to actively oppose their boss being given the good news.  I can see the headlines now; “House Swatties No-Knock AG’s Office”, “OK Corral, D. C.”, “Blood In The (Capitol) Streets”.

So, how do you say “snark” in spanish Mr. Calderon?

That Weiner – What A Wag

And that’s pretty much all I have to say about Congressman Clown Pants.

Michael Anissimov hydrates his trousers …

and J. Storrs Hall has him sit in his lap.

Let me preface this by stipulating that both of these men are deservedly admired for their intellect generally and their grasp of the technical challenges inherent to the development of molecular or nano-scale manufacturing specifically. That being said, I cannot fathom why either would waste any of that intellectual horsepower on the silly “concerns” they both go on about in the linked-to piece. Presumably there are simply no pending developments in any of the on-going efforts to create the stated technology that either gentleman might more profitably direct his attention towards.

How depressing.

Mr. Anissimov says:

I consider it likely that a singleton will emerge in the 21st century, whether we want it to or not, as a natural consequence of expanding technological powers on a finite-sized planet, as well as a historical trend of aggregation of powers at higher geopolitical levels. Note that the singleton concept does not specify what degree or scope of decision-making powers the entity (which, as pointed out, could be a worldwide democracy) has. 99% of policy choices could very well be made at the local and national levels, while a singleton intervenes in those 1% of choices with global importance.

Two things come quickly to mind about all of the above; first, pretty much all of the bullet-points of recorded human history have involved disputes over formation of precisely this socio-political arrangement [Master of all I survey]. I can’t imagine any circumstance unique to this millennium that will change the basic drive for contention amongst human beings, whatever the technology developed. Secondly (and I’m kind-of embarrassed to have to point out something as obvious as this to these two men), since it apparently does need to be said, any governmental entity having the power to enforce it’s decision making even 1% of the time necessarily must have the power to do so the remaining 99% of the time too, should it choose to do so. Only some of the questions this begs are: which 1%, to what extreme, to who’s benefit/detriment, at what point of provocation and so forth.

Really fella’s, is this sort of fantasy Civ speculation that urgent an issue?

I particularly like Mr. Anissimov’s follow-up:

To me, what I’d want most out of a singleton would be a coherent and organized approach to problems that face the entire planet. Instead of a disorganized patchwork, there’d be more decisive action on global risks. No authoritarianism in cultural, political, or economic matters is implied.

Let me just say, Sir, if you truly believe that any such arrangement as you stipulate is remotely possible (never mind likely), I am available for employment as your personal source of common sense. As illustration of what you might expect from such an arrangement between us, consider for as long as necessary just how likely it might be for any entity possessing the means to enforce your compliance with it’s directive to feel constrained by your subsequent objection regarding some putative cultural, political or economic aspect of said directive.

Take your time (if you’re paying me).

I have no desire to turn this into some variant of Fisking, if only because I do respect both gentlemen despite my current mockery. Dr. Hall would do well to laugh as politely as he is able and gently point out the silliness being put on display. Mr. Anissimov needs to devote his attention toward developing a more credible (not to mention more logically consistent) oogy-boogy strawman with which to void his bladder in decent privacy in future.

The present example is just embarrassing, boys.

Dodge The Draft, Volunteer Now!

Cross posted to Future Blogger.

Remember all the Democratic concern over a resurgence of the draft? Looks like they knew what they were obsessing over:

Obama will call on citizens of all ages to serve America, by developing a plan to require 50 hours of community service in middle school and high school and 100 hours of community service in college every year.

(my bold)

Now, I readily grant that there is a substantive difference between involuntary active military service during time of war and 150 hours of involuntary “community service”. If it needs be said so bluntly, my derision is cast at the inducement to service, not the nature of the service performed.

On a not-entirely-unrelated note, I was once granted the opportunity to satisfy my misdemeanor debt to California society when I was – several – decades younger by performing “community service”. As a result, I have actual direct experience of all aspects of this issue upon which to base my commentary.

It’s going to be sooo much fun tormenting the well-meaning over their self-inflicted cognitive dissonance resulting from the distinction between type or conditions of involuntary service and the act of involuntary service itself.

[Note to self: Wait until some obvious Democrat makes the argument the the military draft is akin to slavery but the Obama involuntary service is not. Then break out in peals of soul-purifying laughter at the blazing hypocrisy. Timing is the most important thing in comedy.]

Does anyone actually believe there will be some sort of exemption available for those of us who actually hold down jobs so that we can remain employed to pay the taxes needed to pay for the school and other government expenditures related to just this one program? No, I don’t either, so that’s three hours out of every work week for all of us apparently.

It just keeps getting better and better, doesn’t it? I have to say, my Hope is certainly Changing.

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