Thoughts

Whaz Up!?! 20 Monday 2021


Howdy y’all!

We ran out of coffee!?! It’s Sunday morning way before the stores open, and I get up to finish this post like I do every Sunday only to discover the most important ingredient to blogging missing. Why do bad things happen to good people, god? Why? Oh, wait. Maybe it means… but I scores a Shockingly Saintly on the dark tetrad personality quiz, so that’s not it.

From the good news file: We’re up to $10.00 whole dollars from the ads on the site. It’s only take us a year to get enough money from them so I can take Ma Belle Femme to Starbucks on date night and get a small coffee each. You can let me know how envious you are of me in the comments.

The rains have come: It has been raining constantly for about two weeks. The Mekong has finally started to rise. It’s only a month behind last year’s schedule and about two months behind what had been normal before climate change. The Cambodian people are fed off of the catch from the Tonle Sap lake which is dependent on the shift in flow from Mekong during the rainy season… and off of the rice grown when the fields flood.

Talk Like a Pirate Day: Sunday 19 September was Talk Like a Pirate Day, so I hope y’all got your Args on. It was also the anniversary of President Garfield’s assassination, so hopefully you lit a candle or something. The poor bastard was shot and lingered for two months. Friday 24 September is the anniversary of Ike integrating the Armed Forces and Saturday is Rocky and Bullwinkle Day. You’ve got a week to get your costume together. You won’t want to miss the festivities wherever you are.

Read Last Week

These are the things I read last week, but not necessarily published last week; although, most of them were. I’ve added a new category of podcasts because I’m cool that way.

Blogs

infiltration?!? exploitation!?! Sounds bad. Apparently, Wikipedia has elected administrators who have access to user information. Who knew? Apparently, there is a Chinese edition of Wikipedia. Who knew? Apparently, the Chinese engineered the election of administrators sympathetic to the Xi regime and they were revealing information about Hong Kong resistance members. The Hong Kong Free Press investigated and reported, and Wikipedia gave those folks the axe.

Now, it’s science fact! As it turns out, wearing glasses really does make you smarter… or at least improved the elementary school performance of the kids who had undetected sight issues. Go figure. Seeing the board helped those kids make better grades. Of the 60,000 students enrolled in Baltimore’s public school system from pre-K to eighth grade, 15,000 needed glasses but didn’t have them. Those kids got the help they needed and proved the point that investing in our kids pays off.

Everyone’s a voyeur, right? The Real Life Cheating Wife blog is fascinating. It is something that I find myself reading and feeling slightly icky about afterward, but, like her, I can’t stop. And, like her, I feel like I gotta share it with somebody!

That’s still a thing? I remember when running barefoot became a thing. The indians do it, so it must be good. I’d lived in third world countries for a decade or more by then and seen what running barefoot through the natural environment does to your feet. No thanks. Since you can’t sell barefoot, we got barefoot shoes. One supposes to to stop small bits of glass from penetrating the soles of your feet. And, now, they’ve graduated to minimalist shoes. I’m not sold, but our dear friend, the Chatty Introvert is. Check out her reaction to her minimalist shoes and see how her work out fares.

Must see TV. Friend of the blog, Tengrain, from over at Mock, Paper, Scissors pays tribute to Norm McDonald who passed from a decade long bout with cancer with a clip from an appearance on some late night talk show with a host that I almost know the name of. Anyway, it is must see TV. Do yourself a favor, head on over and check it out.

News

California really is nuts! As it turns out California really just might be nuts. Scientists there have found that squirrels have human-like personality traits! Yeah, maybe so. That squirrel whose always chattering at me for napping on the porch sounds a lot like my favorite drunk uncle, Ingus Fatuus, chattering at me for be such a ding-dang-dumb libel.

Children really do lead us: Archaeologists from Cornell have found what they believe to be the earliest deliberately made hand and foot prints or art made by human beings, or at least the genus Homo because they think they were made by Homo denisovan at a hot springs outside of Quesang, Tibet. The hot springs are still used, by the by. Utterly fascinating to see the 100,000 year old handprints made by a seven and twelve year old. They could’ve been anyone of us.

Podcasts

Podcasts are the new blogs. I got into blogging way late in that I started reading and writing blogs well after they heyday had long long past. I found podcasts sooner in that cycle. Here are episodes from two podcast that I enjoy listening to while doing my household chores, Hidden Brain and #SistersInLaw.

Is sex ever just sex?In this episode, Shankar Vedantam interviews Lisa Wade a Tulane sociologist about her new book, American Hookup: The New Culture of Sex on Campus. Spoiler: it’s just rape culture because men.

It’s the chat, stupid! I LOVE the podcast #SistersInLaw! Why didn’t I start listening it to it sooner? The first five minutes of the show are them just chatting usually about a theme of the show, but this most recent episode the chat ended up with empty nest anecdotes. Sweet, funny, interesting. You feel like you’re sitting around one of their kitchen table’s. The other thing I love is their commercial breaks where they “talk” woodenly about using their sponsor’s products. Man, talk about unintended comedy. Of course, there’s their legal talk based on their collective legal experience.

#COVID19

#COVID19 news from the US and Cambodia. Mostly Cambodia, though.

  • #SilverLining? The good news is that hospitalization rates in ‘Bama are falling! The bad news, because of the high fatality rate. Welcome to the Republican Dystopia where your life can be sacrificed for the greater good of our psychopathic ruling elites.
  • Phnom Penh is Phnomenal! Phnom Penh has officially been ushered into the ranks of the most vaccinated cities in the world.
  • Schools Reopening! The government is allowing children 6 to 11 to be vaccinated, so they’re lining ’em up and jab their arms. That means they’re reopening schools. Immediately upon reopening, 23 students are infected with #COVID19 and five schools have already been closed.
  • They’re high! Cambodia is now aiming for a 91% vaccination rate once they begin vaccinating three to six year olds. They will be one of the few countries with a vaccination rate that high.
  • We keep climbing! Even though Cambodia is achieving a phnomenal vaccination rate, the cases of #COVID19 keep rising. We’re averaging 650 new cases a day, the active case rate is above 4500 for the first time in months, but deaths have dropped slightly. Maybe the vaccinations are keeping people alive and out of the hospital?

PingBacks

  • BURR DEMING’s phenomenal weekly list has been posted over at Fair and Unbalanced with its usual snarky annotation of various and sundry news and blog items from around the web.
  • Of Cabbages and Kings is the maddest of the mad pingbackers! Not only does he link to Ye Olde Blogge pretty often and comments, too, he links to many others. Check out what Robert has linked to recently!
  • Mock, Paper, Scissors provides a daily rundown of the day’s news and events littered with a pleasing amount of snark, sarcasm, and the occasional profanity.
  • Mike’s Blog Round Up provides links to some of the Interwebs smaller quality blogs. It has been hosted by Crooks and Liars. for nearly 20 years now.
  • I spend too much of my monday going through INFIDEL 753 ‘s weekly posting of interesting stuff from around the Internet. You should, too.
Huzzah!
Jack
Did Ye Olde Blogge Talk Like a Pirate?

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Image Attribution

“Talk Like a Pirate Day at Opal Divines” by MarkScottAustinTX is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

35 replies »

  1. Hey Jack- My blog “Snippets of a Traveling Mind” is now available on Spotify as a podcast. Just tripe that title in the search box. If you know others that would be interested in the listening format, feel free to spread the word.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Outside of Paradise, everyone wears some kind of footwear. Images of your bare-footed Noble Savages are just that: images. Canards. Human constructs; pictures painted to depict an other as lessor, history rewritten by those in a position to get away with it. Greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was that whole Puritan/Mayflower thing.

    Though I must admit, my cheap-ass WalMart water-shoes ~ Crocs ~ are so comfortable I sometimes forget to take them off!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Howdy Ten Bear!

      I’ve lived in developing countries long enough to see what being barefoot in the “wild” does to your feet. It ain’t pretty, nor is it healthy. No one in their right mind should want that. The question really becomes one of support for various parts and functions of the foot. Remember the “controversy” over whether you are a heel striker or toe stepper? Shoes developed in response to the needs people had of having the functions of the foot supported and, athletic shoes to give those functions their greatest advantage.

      The history of shoes is filled with discomfort — remember the images of people in the media — of people taking off their shoes and rubbing their poor tired aching feet? We don’t see those images anymore because shoes have improved to the point where they rarely hurt our feet that badly.

      In younger days, I ran marathons. In preparation for one in Germany, I began to rub blisters on my foot. I went to a prominent running shoe store in the town I was in and the sales clerk was surprised that I was getting blisters at all. He questioned the fit of my shoe suggesting that I had the wrong shoe for my foot and stride. As a child, blisters from shoes was de rigueur. It was an accepted outcome of shoe wearing.

      Now, we assume any problem with our feet is the result of the shoe and can be fixed by not wearing them. Probably it is the fault of the foot and shoe technology not sufficiently addressing the structural deficit.

      God help me, why do I know all of this crap? Oh, well. Like I always say, it is a fascinating modern world we live in.

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for the mention for Cabbages And Kings. Since The Catty One was so happy with her barefoot shoes, I tried the experiment with a pair of what I think would be classified as “water shoes” which are in the barefoot style (bought very cheap at WalMart as slippers for the outside) for a real walk. They worked and I tested them on the Greenway here on pavement, gravel, sand, and grass. Although they wouldn’t do for heavy use (as I said, very cheap and wouldn’t last long). Since I go barefoot at home all the time, the feeling wasn’t utterly strange. I may try some real ones.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Howdy Bob!

      That’s great. I remember when I was in university, Chinese Kung-fu shoes were popular. They were basically slippers. I wore them all the time trying and failing miserably to be cool. Exposing your feet to our urban environment is a bad idea. Walking barefoot isn’t a good idea. The low support minimalist shoes are good as long as you don’t need the support.

      My amusement stems from the Enlightenment-based glorification of natural is best, “Oh, the Native Americans ran the Andes barefoot, so it MUST be good.”

      Huzzah!
      Jack

      Liked by 1 person

      • Fortunately, my foot issues are not about support, just chronic Bursitis and big toes that curve up causing the nails to eventually cut through the tops with the mesh that’s so popular currently (also killed a pair of Ugh boots that way). So, I have to look for shoes that are somehow reinforced in that area and have a bit of height in the toe box.

        Humans invented shoes for several good reasons. Also, those Native Americans running the Andes were chewing a lot of Coca leaf.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Howdy Bob!

          Back in my marathon running days I came to appreciate the benefits of a roomy toe box. The dirty little secret of long distance running is what it does to your toenails. It ain’t pretty. You usually lose them in the process.

          Having an unusually shaped toe, though, that causes damage to your shoes and socks is an expensive and troubling difficulty to have… and one I’ve never heard of, but then again, there’s lots that I’ve never heard of.

          I suspect that there are many aspects of the human condition that could be improved by chewing a lot of coca leaves.

          Huzzah!
          Jack

          Liked by 1 person

          • As far as the problem of the weird big toes is concerned, I got spoiled by living about 30 years in CA and AZ and mostly wearing sandals as well as not engaging in much running or long distance walking. My “acceptable shoe” criteria are getting refined.

            It does appear that most, if not all, of the indigenous people where the coca plant grows appreciate the effects of chewing the leaves and it doesn’t seem to harm them much, certainly far less than the harm done to those who use the extracted and concentrated active ingredient.

            Liked by 1 person

            • Howdy Bob!

              Once again, something that helped us in our early evolution is harming us now. All of the refinements that we do to various substances like sugars, fats, and carbs are killing us. Refining coca into cocaine is just one more. We’ll probably find something similar with THC as we’ve engineered marijuana to be ever more powerful and are now extracting its active ingredient to be put into various products.

              Huzzah!
              Jack

              Liked by 1 person

              • Psychoactive drugs do seem to get more problematic when purified. The shaman of old did mess with some very powerful fungi and botanicals, but as a specialist, probably the second oldest profession after midwifery.

                Liked by 1 person

                  • And male physicians were able to take over the healing arts. There were exceptions. Both Hildagard von Biggin, a 12th Century Abbes (also a mystic and composer), and one of Galileo’s daughters, also an Abbes, were renowned as herbalists. They could get away with it as nuns, and were certainly not alone in that.

                    Liked by 1 person

                    • Howdy Bob!

                      People nowadays wonder if watching loved ones die of #COVID19 will break the mass psychosis that surrounds vaccine and mask resistance, but if we look to the witch hysteria of the 15th century, there were villages nearly devoid of women because they were all destroyed as witches. Surely, some of those women were loved by some people of the village. There is a power in cognitive dissonance and that kind of mob behavior that we do not appreciate nowadays.

                      The politics of religion back in the Middle Ages and Renaissance was as full of contradiction and hypocrisy as any politics that we have today. Don’t even let’s start in on the Spanish Inquisition because nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition…

                      Huzzah!
                      Jack

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • As we bob around on stumps, sure. There is nothing more indicative of where the GQP is at than being willing to risk cratering the world’s economy. They are on the road of destroying the world to remake it in their image.

                      Jack

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Oh, sort of like (exactly like?) the Taliban, ISIS, the Bolsheviks, etc, etc, etc. The difference now being that the destroying part will be amplified by forces far greater than their machinations, primarily, climate change, which their model resists recognizing and will not be able to deal with effectively when they do realize how bad it is.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Again, I’m back to the reach that a billion dollars affords versus a million. The 1% of the West really can fund the destruction of the world order on many different fronts. If any of those other groups had the money that the Koch Bros, Murdochs, and Mercers had, the outcomes of their movements may have been very different.

                      Jack

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Howdy Bob!

                      The Saudi royal family never supported the Wahhabi. They made a deal with them that they wouldn’t interfere with them if they didn’t direct their attacks against them. They had money from Saudi oil like every Saudi family does, but it wasn’t the direct spigot from the oil wells like it is for the royals. The madrassas in Pakistan were funded by the Sauds, but the money had to flow through the Pakistani government and military to reach them with loses along the way. At any rate, they didn’t dump a billion dollars a year into the terror networks unlike what we’ve seen flow through the coffers of PACs and other dark money organizations. I haven’t seen a formal comparison of amounts, but I can’t imagine that it is even close.

                      Huzzah!
                      Jack

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Hmm – I see estimates of the net worth of the Saudi royal family ranging from 100 Billion (Wikipedia) to 1.4 Trillion [https://nairametrics.com/2021/05/04/the-saudi-royal-family-is-worth-over-1-4-trillion-here-are-5-amazing-facts-about%E2%80%AFthem/] . At 15,000 members (Wikipedia) that’s plenty of comfort for all, but the control is in a far smaller group. Of course there are other insanely wealthy large families there, like the Bin Ladens. Osama largely funded his organization out of his share, as far as I’ve heard.

                      You’re almost certainly right about the comparison. There is an argument there for getting the marginal personal income tax rate back up to 90% in the upper end, and corporate rates much higher as well, and a wealth tax and a graduated estate tax. We are not going to get out of this trap without some serious redistribution.

                      I’m continually irritated at the GOP claim that higher corporate income tax rates will stifle investment and innovation and destroy jobs. They insist on pretending implicitly that corporation pay income tax on their gross sales, not just profits. If you tax profits, who pays? The owners, just as is the case with a sole proprietorship or partnership. In the case of a corporation that is the shareholders by way of smaller dividends. Hmmm – “shareholders” – like me? Well, yes, but mostly insurance companies, hedge funds, universities, etc., (used to be pension funds, but we don’t do pensions anymore). So, if a corporation wants to pay less income tax, the thing to do is to invest more in the business – it’s deductible. So is paying their CEOs and Board members hugely more.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Howdy Bob!

                      I’m not saying that the Saudis aren’t some of the wealthiest people in the world. I’m saying that they aren’t spending their money on remaking the world in their image. I don’t think that was bin Laden’s goal, either. It is Putin’s goal, though. If all the world is as corrupt as he is, then he makes just that much more money and his risk of losing it all from political upheaval at home is reduced. The wealthy Saudis are too invested in the world order as is to want to destroy it. They are actively looking at shifting their investments out of oil and into other sectors, though.

                      The GOP rely on the low information voter and their fan-base identity for their elections. The tax code is too complex to be understood easily by the average person, or even easily explained to them, so the average person relies on the people they like to interpret it for them. When you like Republicans and your identity is as a Republican and the Republican says that paying taxes on profit isn’t fair because you’ve already paid tax on gross sales, then you believe them.

                      The opposite is also true. Most rank and file Democrats don’t get it either, but since Warren is against it, for example, so are they.

                      My hope is that the extra ten million or whatever the number is that Trump turned out in 2020 won’t be coming to the polls in 2022 because they are low information marginal sometimes voters. And that the core base of the GOP has shrunk enough that they no longer outnumber the reliable core base of the Democrats. I hope that the anti-abortion laws are animating enough for a wide swath of people that we get a huge turn out in 2022 and that the stolen election rhetoric of the right is depresses their turn out.

                      Those are the hopes, right?

                      Huzzah!
                      Jack

                      Liked by 2 people

                    • The Saudis are busy buying mansions in other places and socking away investment for when either the oil runs out or goes out of style. By the end of this century, and possibly much sooner, their country will be uninhabitable outside of air conditioning. Maybe they can turn the whole place into one big solar farm, but anybody there who isn’t filthy rich or working within the AC zone will have to go somewhere.

                      News note, even the guys from Cyber Ninjas couldn’t find or create enough bad ballots to give Trump the election in Maricopa County.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Howdy Bob!

                      The Cyber Ninjas report did indeed reveal all: (1) It was always an enterprise that was designed to cast doubt on the integrity of the elections regardless of the actual findings. They have continued to state that there are questions about the elections even though they couldn’t prove anything. (2) It was a grift designed to milk as much money from donors and the State of Arizona that they could. And (3) there was no fraud in the election. Funny how that doesn’t seem to matter.

                      The Saudis know they’re in trouble with climate change. It may be why they are taking mitigation of climate change a little more seriously than the giant oil companies are. The CEOs are all blinded by greed. The Saudis have always been practical strategists.

                      Huzzah!
                      Jack

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • As several interviewed election officials around the country have pointed out, much of the belief in the possibility of election fraud depends on ignorance of how elections are actually run (example: staffing with teams of 50-50 R & D). The Cyber Ninjas had no experience working on elections and their suggestions of problems reveal that ignorance. But, they have been well paid and for longer than makes any sense other than a scam.

                      The Saudis know the meaning of “dessert” and how close to the limits of habitation their people have managed to live for a very long time. Also, despite some recent moves to sell some stock to others, the place is still a family business and not, like the managers of publicly traded corporations, subject to the rewards and punishments meted out on the trading floors of stock exchanges.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Howdy Bob!

                      The Cyber Ninjas demonstrated quite clearly with their report exactly how little they knew about elections and exactly how little it mattered to their audience.

                      Huzzah!
                      Jack

                      Liked by 1 person

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