Louis CK and Donald Rumsfeld Interview

Does Rumsfeld have lizard dna? I don’t know, but I sure get a kick out of listening to Louis CK ask the question.  Louis says that the lizards can only answer honestly to that question or avoid answering the question.  Something lizardy about their inability to directly lie about their lizard origins.

I guess the lizard dna question is going to be one of the known unknowns. Buy the Rumsfeld book for more background.

Solar Seattle?

Absolutely!

Here is the news, with a tip of the hat to Nan at Envirotalk in Olympia for spreading the news.

 

 

This is how we do it.  We stop waiting for the leaders to figure out the obvious and we jump in to build from the grassroots level.

Here’s an organization that may be able to help you make this happen or to start the line in your community to make this happen.  One Block Off the Grid.

Army of Fake Social Media Friends to Promote Propaganda

I have posted about this before, but I think the story and its importance have not gotten any traction yet.  I am not sure why that is the case because this is a pretty amazing revelation about the automation of propaganda and disinformation by the intelligence community against the American people.

Darlene Storm over at Computerworld has now taken up the story.   Here is Darlene’s lead:

By Darlene Storm, Computerworld    Feb 23, 2011 2:03 pm

 It’s recently been revealed that the U.S. government contracted HBGary Federal for the development of software which could create multiple fake social media profiles to manipulate and sway public opinion on controversial issues by promoting propaganda. It could also be used as surveillance to find public opinions with points of view the powers-that-be didn’t like. It could then potentially have their “fake” people run smear campaigns against those “real” people. As disturbing as this is, it’s not really new for U.S. intelligence or private intelligence firms to do the dirty work behind closed doors.

It’s not a big surprise that the U.S. military also wants to use social media to its benefit. Last year, Public Intelligence published the U.S. Air Force social media guide which gave 10 tips for social media such as, “The enemy is engaged in this battlespace and you must engage there as well.” Number three was “DON’T LIE. Credibility is critical, without it, no one cares what you have to say…it’s also punishable by the UCMJ to give a false statement.” The Air Force used the chart below to show how social media influences public opinion.  Click on the link to jump to the Air Force website

 The 6th Contracting Squadron at MacDill Air Force Base sought the development of Persona Management Software which could be used for creating and managing fake profiles on social media sites to distort the truth and make it appear as if there was a generally accepted agreement on controversial issues. “Personas must be able to appear to originate in nearly any part of the world and can interact through conventional online services and social media platforms.” What happened to don’t lie and the Uniform Code of Military Justice?

Everything revealed after Anonymous leaked emails from private security firm HBGary Federal is disturbing on many levels. However, the Daily Kos said with the Persona Management Software it would take very few people to create “an army of sockpuppets” which could distort the truth while appearing to be “an entire Brooks Brothers riot online.”

So again I ask, what happened to number three . . . the rule about not lying that was also “punishable by the UCMJ to give a false statement”?

I think the problem is that it is theoretically possible to be punished for breaking laws or giving a false statement.  The application of law and punishment is tilted heavily in favor of getting away with law breaking within the context of maintaining the status quo.  Bernie Madoff goes to jail, but he’s the exception.  He went off the deep-end and simply fabricated financial statements instead of making a fortune creating hyper-inflated derivatives to sell off to the rubes, the pension boards, the 401k patrons in the manner of more mainstream Wall Street raiders.   Bradley Manning is in solitary for months as the military and government use their tools and playbook to torture Manning in this way that leaves no fingerprints, but clearly breaks human beings who are clearly social creatures.  Deprive us of all social contact and context for months and we come apart.  This is hardly news, yet it continues to happen.

You tell me, is the government and the military committing crimes when they engage in lying and propaganda to manipulate public opinion using social media?  Is it or should it be a crime to hold any human being in social isolation?  and the really big question, is there any way that we can level the playing field and encourage the prosecutorial powers to ply their trade against the insiders who are breaking laws or is the justice system primarily reserved for harassing  the enemies of the status quo?

Are you Funding the Koch brothers assault on democracy?

John Birch Society anyone? Connections between JBS and the Koch brothers?

Thanks to Carol Davidek-Waller for this information.

Here is a list of Koch Industries products you might like to avoid.
Koch Industries Gasoline:
Chevron
Union
Union 76
Conoco

Koch Industries¡©/Georgia-P¡©acific Products:
Angel Soft toilet paper
Brawny paper towels
Dixie plates, bowls, napkins and cups
Mardi Gras napkins and towels
Quilted Northern toilet paper
Soft ‘n Gentle toilet paper
Sparkle napkins
Vanity fair napkins
Zee napkins

Watch the Republicans Govern in Wisconsin

The long term political story in Wisconsin is not that of a right-wing state. Wisconsin is not Arizona or Utah or Idaho. The State has a large scandinavian immigrant tradition that has liberal traditions, a tradition that understands the benefits of a state that values domestic services over the extension of military force beyond its borders. The large metropolitan areas have been dependably democratic. The State has produced and elected both Joe McCarthyand Russ Feingold, so the story is mixed.  The 2010 State elections produced a Republican governor and republican majorities in both legislative bodies and the result is what we are seeing.

Wisconsin feels like ground zero in the class wars, the assault on democracy that was the predictable result of the Citizens United decision by a partisan, activist Supreme Court. This Supreme Court is the triumph, the legacy of a generation of largely republican presidents. Progressives face a perfect storm today. We have a federal judiciary that is a minefield of partisan operatives who are appointed for life. We face a patchwork of black-box vote counting systems around the country that are demonstrably insecure and subject to hacking. We operate in the shadow of a corporate media and mainstream news system that is at best, largely useless as a check on political power, and at worst, is a mouthpiece and propaganda system for monied interests.

Wisconsin, David Koch is on the line. Do you really want to take that call?

Still Processing the Big Picture Implications

The uprising(s) in the Middle East and the conflict in Wisconsin really have me thinking hard about whether the root of these local events is in peak oil, global warming, population politics?Photo courtesy Calle Eklund/V-wolf Wiki Commons

I don’t think we have hit Peak Rock, but I think we have hit Peak Oil.  NPG (Negative Population Growth) has a piece by Lindsay Grant that opens with the following:

For years, it has been puzzling to see commentators debating whether peak oil is a future possibility, when the U.S. Energy Information Administration (DOE/EIA) data showed world crude oil production peaking in 2005.  The puzzle is the product of denial.  Most people in the oil business don’t want to face peakoil.  However, the issue was muddied last year when the EIA itself suggested that 2008 production might surpass 2005 by a tiny margin.1

The EIA has revised its estimates, and it now establishes 2005 as the peak year – above 2008 by the tiniest of margins.  The preliminary figure for 2009 is 2% below 2005, which is a more significant figure.

The uprisings demonstrate one important thing to keep in mind about human geopolitical dynamics – the unpredictable nature of the popular uprising.  Why do these things happen when they do?  I think the answer is that nobody knows.  The popular zeitgeist in any particular locale is just too complicated to understand.  There are the demographic measures – the shoe thrower index – can give some background, but I expect that all of these measurement tools will have little predictive value in a time frame meaningful to policy planners and bloggers.Photo courtesy Anirudh Koul

But I will tell you that I am frankly worried about the future for my children and grandchildren.  I don’t know when an uprising, an earthquake, an economic collapse, rapidly rising commodity prices will upset their world, but I think the relative stability that I have experienced in my lifetime will not be available to the coming generations.

Peak oil and global warming are sides of a coin.  The facts that our species discovered the utility of petro-carbon fuels, has experienced a population boom driven by petro-carbon fuels, has blown through so much of the planetary supply and driven the planetary climate out of a stable state through burning these fuels – all of this is connected.  It’s connected to the uprisings in the Middle East and it’s connected to the class war happening here in the US, front line:  Wisconsin.

We (the human species)  have/had some choices.  We can look forward, change our ways and ourselves in some kind of amazing cultural evolution to recognize the need to establish steady state economies, population control, justice systems that would do away with the need for war, for coercion, a real turn to a rule of law or we can march into the future of a changing planet with the tools of the last war(s) and fight a series of resource wars around the globe (and work on population control the old fashioned way – with child soldiers armed with weaponry “Made in the USA.” Does it make you proud?  It doesn’t do much for me. (I will concede that our competition made a better weapon for child soldiers with the AK 47, but let’s not quibble).

That’s what I am thinking.  The uprisings, the oppression and class war of Scott Walker (child soldier for the Koch brothers) and his ilk are resource wars.  Witness the talk by the WI state official about the rightness of using live ammunition against people protesting the loss of collective bargaining rights.  Holy Smoke!  People with no sense of history can sure get themselves on the wrong side of the history story.

Sitting, chatting, listening to Kucinich (a guy who has consistently been able to see the tragedy, waste and foolishness of war) on President’s Day was encouraging in some ways.  He was preaching to the choir, but the choir needed a little encouragement and time together to raise our hearts for the work ahead.  One question that was sent forward to Dennis, was how do we change these people?  These people who think wars make sense and unions do not?  How do find common cause with folks who would do us harm with such gusto and so little hesitation?

It’s a good question and Dennis brought the answer we all knew was coming.  We change them by being the change.  We change ourselves.  Change is coming.

Go get’m.  Love your enemies.  Boy, that’s an old challenge…   and the order of the day.

How many shopping days to Christmas?

Science Robot T Shirts

Have we hit Peak Rock?

Hypothesis: Current scientific thought suggests we have already achieved max rocking level.

Perhaps max-rocking levels could be radically increased with creation of 30ft tall motion controlled guitar thrashing robot simulacrum.

Technology rocks.  Click on the picture to jump to the website.

Or another choice.  If you prefer tailgating to thrashing: Roastmyweenie.comRoast My Weenie

Roast’m with Marsha Mello.

It appears these grill accessories are designed and manufactured by Texans.

Classy.