Friday, November 3, 2017

Vegas Conspiracy

Danley, Paddock’s girlfriend, appears to be receiving undue attention. Perhaps because she and Campos are the only ones involved who aren’t white. Vegas police haven’t presented well. I’m thinking that Reno 911 is more real than satire. Paddock seems to have given Danley the opportunity for a fat lawsuit. Maybe it’s just that all parties are concerned with liability but there is smoke. Did Paddock belong to somebody?

Odd that Paddocks tax returns have not yet been released. I doubt that he was operational, those guys been there, done that. He could have been in a support function.  The only operational goofs I can think of are Oswald and McVeigh.

Some of the smoke is Paddock as “professional gambler”. Supposedly, with comps, if you play big slots you can profit. This is why Vegas has so many rich gamblers and the casinos are broke. When gamblers play for comps they identify themselves to the casino. Everyone knows the machines are throttled. There is nothing illegal about this. When the house has volume it makes sense to throttle forward the machines, more big payouts and dings, to generate excitement. Likewise low volume is an opportunity to tighten the throttle and improve margins. Once a player is identified it is possible to tailor the throttle strategy to that player, keep them playing, and milk them for maximum return. It is a natural AI application. This would be legal as long as the percentage payout would be over the required amount. So Paddock was a chump. Did Paddock change his life style and investments only to realize he had been suckered?

It is likely that Paddock was a victim of child abuse. His dad was caught when Paddock was seven. Bad people, such as his father, often do bad things.

However Paddock got his stake and whatever his gullibility, he entered the real estate market at an auspicious time. In a boom market a persistent fool may do far better than a cautious investor.

The Korean War was voted down because of casualties and supply scandals. In Vietnam the military kept casualties down and when stories of the ArmaLite rifles jamming came out the military reacted with hysteria. To this day soldiers regard a rifle jam as a personal failure. Now that these rifles are widely available, you can see shooters clearing their jams while insisting that their guns are reliable.

-Look how easy it is to clear the jam.

Once a gun starts jamming it is best to clean it. It is now obvious that the guns jam because they are designed to minimize recoil. Why did the shooter have so many rifles? Because he knew that they would get hot and jam. Why did he stop shooting? Initially I thought maybe all his guns had jammed. But mass killers often become disgusted with the reality and are frightened of capture.

If you must have conspiracy, Campos, the hotel security responder, might have shot Paddock. Given Vegas he would have deemed it better to avoid attention.

Why is there so much violence? Violence is endemic. Constant immigration takes its toll. Our violence is quantitatively less than other places but it doesn’t have the same level of institutional acceptance. Why so much shooting? Shooting has gotten easier; the equipment is improved. The lone shooter reminds me of domestic violence. They are attacking people because they feel isolated, abandoned and betrayed.


Friday, September 8, 2017

Stump Treatment

The slush piles are brimming with Trump stories. If I were a reader I would filter out anything with Trump in it, just as I do click bait. The premise for this one is that the Russians are disgusted with the lack of return on their investment. Envision Putin ranting. Not sure who to cast for Putin. Perhaps a computer generated image. He could sue but the argument is that his persona is in the public domain. Do the same thing with Trump. The lawsuit would be good publicity. If we can’t say Trump, say Stump, Putin; Putting. The joke is that Putin is speaking extremely vulgar Russian, or even breaking into heavily accented English but the sub titles are very proper. Maybe this will keep a PG rating. The title is rolling while Putin screams obscenities. 

-We can’t even get his fucking briefing books.

-There’s no actionable intelligence.

-We have the briefing books.

-You ugly ass wipe, that’s not the point. That fat shit can’t read.

-What use is he, if he can’t read?

I’m on it.

-You know what you’re on? I’ll tell you what you’re on…

Next scene is the Jefferson Memorial. Spies always meet at the memorial, typical Russian agent speaking to his American asset. The Russian sounds Russian; the American has a strong regional accent.

RA-We need a school teacher.

AA-What?

RA-Reading, they have to be able to teach anyone to read.

AA-I’ll ask around.

Scene of school teacher in second grade, things are going poorly. I see her as black. Get some teacher focus groups, opportunity for school teacher jokes, reading jokes, ADHD jokes, dyslexia jokes, spy jokes, Russian jokes, and harassment jokes.

School teacher walks into a bar:
ST-I’ll have a martini. I’ll have a martini with an olive in it. I’ll have a martini with gin and vermouth.

The American Asset hands her an envelope.
AA - Ten thousand, cash.

She puts the envelope in her bra.
ST - Just you?

AA-I work for the Russian government, we need a school teacher. Trump has to read.

ST - This all I get?

AA - One hundred thousand when you are done.

ST-You can get me in the White House?

AA - No problem. When do you start?

ST-I’ll get to Washington tomorrow, I don’t usually educate adults.

AA-Issue?

ST-No.

School teacher walks into principal’s office.
ST - Taking three weeks’ vacation starting tomorrow.

P- You can’t.

ST – Four weeks.

P-Who will sub?

ST - You?

P-I’ll get you. You won’t have a job when you get back.

ST - Fuck the job.

P-What about the kids?

ST - Fuck the kids.

School teacher talking to her class:
-I am going to miss all of you beautiful children, but it’s only for a short time, while I learn to be a better teacher for you. Meanwhile you will have the principal teaching you. He knows so much. I know you will be just as considerate of him as you are of me. It has been a few years since he has had the joy of actually teaching a class so you will have to help him in the beginning. This will be so much fun for you.

WH scene:
The WH aide is describing the atmosphere of harassment.
ST-I’ve taught eighth grade.

Oval Office:
ST - Give me your alphabet.

Trump: This is bullshit, look how far I’ve gotten without it.

ST-alphabet.

T-singsong alphabet.

ST-vowels.

T-AEIOU

ST-and?

T?

ST-sometimes Y.

T-I before e except after c.

ST-That’s right. What’s this? Here read this speech.

T-I just put it in Word and it reads it to me.

ST-You have a good memory. Read it for me.

T-The words fall apart.

ST - Look out the window.

T-What?

ST – Look out the window, tell me what you see.

T- Bushes, somebodies head, the fence, columns.

Trump loses interest starts looking around the room.
ST-What do you see in the room?

T-My desk, what’s the point?

ST - Look at the window again.

T- Still bushes.

ST-Don’t look out the window.

Trump looks out the window.

ST-Don’t look at your speech.

T- The purpose of this speech is to…

ST- That’s good. Look away when you lose it; then look back.

T - Explain our position in Iran. This is a stupid speech.

ST – It is stupid.  Keep at it.

Trump looks away at every word.
T- The…United…States…Must…Show… a…firm…resolve…I can’t keep doing this.

ST-This is how you start. It isn’t easy, keep at it.

T- To ensure that Iran does not return to the nuclear option. Together…This is our policy? The whole thing is just a shakedown of Saudi Arabia.

ST-Isn’t this easier than remembering?

T-I’m not going to say this shit.

ST - well no. You’ve made some progress. I’m leaving this book here. I got it from your library, it belonged to Kennedy.

T-What is it?

ST-What does it say?

T- Hornblower? Ship of the line.

ST-I don’t want you reading this until tomorrow. You might hurt your eyes. Wait for me and we will look at it together. OK?

Or maybe do product placement on dyslexia software, or the Russians can bring in an optometrist.

Melania talking to a man with his feet up on a desk:
MT-He’s reading a book.

Man-He’s not tweeting.

MT yells-He’s reading a book.

Man-I’ll get on it.

Develop Melania Trump, show her running White House, deciding policy.

School Teacher walks into Oval Office holding another book.
ST-Let’s start on Hornblower.

T- Read it.

ST-Did not. How did it end?

T-He got captured.

ST-You read the end.

T-He isn’t much of a hero.

ST- Whoa, comprehension? No he isn’t.

T-They give this to kids?

ST-More in the library, it’s a series.

T on the computer-It wants a password, I already logged on.

ST looks over his shoulder- Try your logon password. Washington?

T-What’s this?

ST-A PDF, must’ve scanned something.

T-What is this?

ST- Handwriting.

T- How do you read it?

ST- Write something for me.

Trump prints Fuck You.

ST- Do it again, but don’t raise your pencil.

Trump does it; then reads the screen – I had no idea it would come to this. I just wanted to save my plantation. Before you judge, you are now in the same predicament.

Trump has trouble with predicament - I’m reading out loud.

ST-That’s how you memorize. When you want to remember, read it aloud.

T-I don’t want to memorize all of it.

T keeps reading – Washington is an asshole.

ST- Got another book from the library. Jefferson owned this.

T-What is it?

ST-What does it say?

T-Wealth of Nations, what’s it about?

ST- about 700 pages, economics.

T- I’m reading this first.

ST-OK

School teacher at Jefferson memorial with white house aide:
WHA-He’s tweeting about presidents, Washington asshole, Adams stooge, Jefferson back stabbing SOB.

ST-He’s reading something they each left for the next presidents, in handwriting.

WHA- Here’s your 100,000 check.

ST putting it in her bra-Should be a million.

WHA-Stick around, I’ll ask.

ST- Maybe I’ll give him Black Like Me.

WHA - Uncle Tom’s Cabin.

ST- Not Malcolm X.

WHA- Mockingbird.

Two suits, one is fiddling with an Epipen:
-Why do the Russians want him to read?

-Commies are into that.

-They’re not commies.

-Whatever.

School teacher walks into the Oval Office:

T-Eisenhower was smart.

ST-No progress with Smith?

T-They had corn in England?

ST-Corn means cheapest grain, horse feed, like gasoline today.

T-He’s talking about inflation?

ST-Yes

T- 300 years ago.

ST-Yes

T-Isn’t this just the market place is great?

ST-You haven’t read it. He wasn’t stupid.

T-Briefing books suck. Eisenhower said they were stupid. What’s after Smith?

ST-Marx

T- Commie?

ST- Yes, you already kind of know his stuff.

T- After that?

ST- Keynes. Then Samuelson’s textbook.

T- Problems?

ST - Well yeah.

T-That’s it?

ST- Mandelbrot, I guess. He wrote a short one about finance. Graham and Dodd

T-Why should I know economics?

ST-So they don’t game you.

T-Everybody’s bluffing.

ST-Yes

T-I thought you’d bring in Mockingbird.

ST-Couldn’t find it in your library. I don’t think knowledge cures racism.

T-Thank you

ST-You’re welcome. Are we done?

T-I think I need to see you for a while.  This network doesn’t have much.

ST - Really?

T-They want me to install something.

ST-You have to trust them.

T-Why wasn’t it installed already?

ST-Don’t know.

T-You didn’t start me with the first Hornblower.

ST- No

T-I got it from the library.

ST-good

Include bits where the teacher tries to give socialization training. Anne Frank’s Diary, Huckleberry Finn, University of Pennsylvania joke

Have a late night host do a bit on Trumps tweets about the presidents. Give them script credit.

There is a big argument in a White House corridor. People are gathering to watch. The school teacher is rubber necking on the edge of the crowd. A suit swings at the school teacher with the Epipen.  The teacher sees it, grabs his hand before he hits her, stamps on his instep with her high heel, switches hands on her grip, and hits him in the elbow twisting his arm as she kicks out his knee. The teacher grabs the Epipen and stabs the suit with it, walking off holding the pen. People start to notice the man collapsed behind them.

School Teacher talking to White House Aide at the aides’ desk:
WHA- Colyer had a heart attack.

ST drops the Epipen in the aides’ trash-I was supposed to have one.

WHA-You took Colyer? He’s NSA.

ST - Playground duty. Trump wants me to hang out. Million?

WHA-It’s approved. Up to you when you leave

Bit about Trump telling secrets and no one believes him.

Oval Office, Trump alone. Obama’s voice comes on background. Maybe Obama would do it, now that the letter is public. It would be fun to have Bush senior give advice to Clinton; maybe he would do his own.  Doubt you could get Carter. Bush junior started doing this publicly, my guess is that it goes all the way back.
O-reads his letter.

T tweets- What a prig.

School Teacher walks in.

T-Obama is a prig.

ST-He’s a good student

T-What I said. I found a cool directory.

ST-They want you to know something.

T- Not sure.

ST-What will you write to your successors?

T- Something short.

ST-I think you have a lot to say.

T- Tell them to read Eisenhower, FDR; Hoover. Teach you’re fired. I’m very grateful to you. My time is valuable. You have a nice figure.

The school teacher leaves.

School Teacher at White House Aides’ desk:
T- Fired.

WHA hands ST envelope, ST looks at it and puts it in her bra.

ST walking down White House hall. Secret Service agent takes out pistol and shoots her in the head. Checks her pulse, puts down the gun as people come out of their offices.
SSA- Ohmigod, it just went off. I was just checking my gun.

News show, talking heads:
-A school teacher was killed by accident today at the White House.

-Was she working there?

-Advisory position.

-Conspiracy?

-Conspiracy to kill a school teacher?
In the television series the school teacher would live, giving a different lesson each episode. In the musical this would be a crescendo. Merchandising includes flashcards.

Jefferson Memorial, White House Aide is sobbing, comforted by Russian Agent.
RA-It’s not our first school teacher.

Trump is talking at a rally:
T-Kennedy Killing? Everybody knows that…
<fade>


Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Mullet Architecture

I thought of this term while visiting Indianapolis and seeing their library and a nearby church converted to residential. Mullet refers to a hairstyle that is:

-business in the front and party in back.

A mullet is a type of catfish. Mullet head is a derogatory word implying poor and therefore stupid. This word became associated with the hairstyle a few decades ago. While I claim credit for Chicago Facade, peeling the facade off an old building then pasting it on a new one to satisfy nostalgia, the Mullet Architecture term already exists.

Examples given are Frank Lloyd Wright’s Winslow house in River Forest and modernist houses built in Nazi Germany which maintained a severe front. I am extending the term to Mullet houses that meet the requirements of historic districts while allowing large family rooms and kitchens.

This type of restoration arises from envy of the Ranch styles with their dramatic living/dining and open kitchen areas. People living in Craftsman, Victorian, Four Square, Elizabethan, Georgian, Italianate, etc. homes want to have the suburban open pit television aesthetic. Since they can’t capture the spaciousness of those cheap unincorporated lots, they compensate with fancy kitchens.

The kitchens are remarkable. Consider a restaurant line chef’s work station. It is quite snug, in part because space for guests represents revenue but also because chefs are on their feet. Some pastry chefs may maintain a piece of marble, but I have yet to see any of the popular counter tops in a restaurant kitchen. These home kitchen Hestia shrines are an atavism representing a lost mythical past. One giveaway is the lack of a smoke hood above a ridiculous industrial stove. I have seen paintings hung in a kitchen.

The Indianapolis Library anchors a large park designed in the image of the National Mall. Centering of the Sales Force tower at the opposite end of the park has already subverted the nationalist image.

Losing the original pleasant library building at the end of the park would be wrong. I fail to see why keeping that building required that they add on to it. A separate new library building, even at a different site doesn’t seem to be more expensive.

I am not a fan of repurposing churches. I understand nostalgia for the buildings. But the cheery appropriation of the sacred for the profane is annoying. Indianapolis wanted to maintain the look of their park while building condominiums. The mullet is easier than attempting an architecturally appropriate modern building on the site.


  

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

I Want To Go

It seems feasible that we could have a spacecraft that hurtles toward the sun becoming a comet. The idea would be to apply acceleration at various orbital points that maximize speed with minimum expenditure. If we can go fast enough the relativistic effect would compensate for our lack of resources. After sufficient orbits we could then rejoin the Earth. To us it would seem that we had been gone a few months or even years, but we would have moved forward in time by hundreds of years.

It should be possible to do some science at the outer boundary of our orbit. Measure the cosmic radiation, red shift, various observations of deep space. Maybe our UFO’s are other primates who are moving forward in time in order to avoid us.

The reason of course is that once we had rejoined humanity, assuming that we are still here, we could then ask them, after we figured out how they spoke:
-What do you think of Donald Trump?

They would answer:

-Who?

Friday, September 9, 2016

Likely and So/Sandra Bland

I don’t know what happened. Dope means they toyed with her and that is why she broke.

I hate the word surreal. We all have some commitment to Bayesian analysis. Recognize that it is a probability and all probabilities include frustration as an outcome. Calvinism, the widely held belief enshrining Bayesian outcomes that things are as they are, frequently fails. This may be explained as fractal dynamic or failures of framing, but may simply be the consequence of chance. Confusing improbable with surreal simply means that your smug world view has been challenged by experience. Likely is not always so.

Explication still requires likely. We are indisposed to accept the miraculous, even when it is so. In the case of Sandra Bland the difficult anomaly is that she died stoned. If you believe that she somehow smuggled the dope in herself, I suggest you attempt it. If all the various formality and process of incarceration guarantee anything, they ensure that you will not have marijuana in prison. The explanation requires that Ms. Bland, in anticipation of her incarceration, secreted marijuana on her presence in some way unnoticed by her guards who deal with exactly that scenario every single day of their careers. If Waller County cannot explain the marijuana, they have no legitimacy.

Some believe that Sandra Bland was murdered. This is an excellent example of the difficulty of framing. It is likely that you have been inside. If you have, then you are well aware that prison is a very serious time out. We like to think we have internal resources. But as you read this you can select an entertainment source, order a pizza, or step out for some air. You can’t do those things in jail. Most of us are not good company and would resent being the sole source of someone’s divertissement, even or especially our own. It is likely that Sandra Bland obtained the marijuana from the guards. It is unreasonable that they would give her dope and then murder her. I hope that Sandra Bland was murdered. I think it was far worse.

Sandra Bland is depicted as fragile. I see her as self-reliant and adaptable. I doubt most of us would have lasted as long.   Why would the guards give her dope? What could she do for them? As you have come this far, I will be explicit. Harassment of prisoners, particularly women prisoners is common. One may say likely.


Thursday, June 16, 2016

Air Superiority Drones

Warfare has countless examples of ignoring the obvious, cavalry before World War I, fortified emplacements before World War II, techno-war before Vietnam; generals begin fighting each war with the lessons learned from the past. Now we have fighter planes.

Drones are currently successful because they are used for ground support. This is a mission that has long been neglected. It is difficult to justify expenditure on fixed wing propeller aircraft even though they are the best means of assisting ground troops. Drones have stepped into this vacuum. 

The next obvious step in Drone evolution is to give them jet capability. This is a disruptive technology. Defense companies are disinterested because it will end their expensive all-purpose fighter jets. Air forces don’t want to lose their fighter pilot culture. What a tremendous profit opportunity and with such a low entry level cost.

Just as electric cars have made power engineers sexy again, stealth given opportunity to radio engineers, drones do it for aerospace engineering. Don’t be distracted by scramjets. Think cheap. It may even be possible to fly high and drop nets. If your targets are subsonic you might use sound instead of radar. Perhaps you are just an AMRAAM delivery platform.  Say you have a relatively slow moving drone carrying 10 air to air missiles flying in support of a mission. Now say you have 25 such drones.

Kickstart its’ funding. I’m sure every war nerd in the world will kick in to shoot down top gun.


Friday, May 6, 2016

Trumpageddon

Proposed Congressional legislation:

1. The National Security Agency is only authorized to intercept communications. Any other such authorization it may require must be obtained from the Defense Department.
2. Nuclear weapons can only be launched with the initiative of the president and the four senior military commanders. There is no individual initiative to launch and any attempt to supersede this initiative nullifies it.
3. The President has no authority to initiate military action. All such action must be initiated by Congress. Congress must annually explicitly approve all military missions. Loss of approval ends the mission. Military violation of a nation’s sovereignty without explicit consent of congress receives minimum sentence of five years. 

It has become obvious that our nation’s electorate does not respect the executive. For the safety of the country and the world, Congress must act. National Security Authority has been abused on several occasions, most notably with Watergate. Both Kennedy and Reagan nearly brought nuclear disaster. The third provision would not have prevented our most egregious military losses. Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan would still have occurred. But it may have restrained Eisenhower’s adventures, our Caribbean escapades, ruination of South and Central America, the slaughter in Indonesia and perhaps even Cambodia, Libya, and our current SOCOM fantasies.
  
While I’m at it:

4. Whenever the Central Intelligence Agency is apprehended either domestically or internationally it must submit to rule of law without equivocation or exception. Attempts to suppress investigation are felonies punishable by a minimum of five years imprisonment. 
5. Only Congress can issue pardons. The President cannot be pardoned.
Call this the Nixon Act.

6. Service as Director of the FBI is limited to ten years.
This would be the Hoover Act.

7. Attorney General is no longer a cabinet official but an independent office appointed for a ten year term. 

If Congress could get up on its hind legs, the end of the imperial presidency would be Trump’s greatest contribution.