A Geek With Guns

Chronicling the depravities of the State.

Jim Crow Never Went Away

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If you ever need an illustration of just how stupid the average voter is, find a voter who is complaining about racist government policies and ask them how they plan to change it. 99 percent (a conservative estimate, it’s probably higher) of the time the voter will tell you that they’re planning to beg the government to change its policies. If you point out how stupid that idea is, they’ll point to the elimination of slavery and the striking down of Jim Crow laws as proof that their strategy works, which should prove to you that the person you’re conversing with is extremely gullible (on the upside you probably just found a buyer for that bridge that you’re trying to offload).

While the government has said that it eliminated slavery and Jim Crow laws, it really just changed some legal definitions. If you’re being held against your will and forced to provide labor, you’re not legally considered a slave, you’re legally considered a prison laborer. Likewise, there are no longer laws that overtly treat people differently based on the color of their skin, instead there are algorithms that do the same thing but provide plausible deniability:

But what’s taking the place of cash bail may prove even worse in the long run. In California, a presumption of detention will effectively replace eligibility for immediate release when the new law takes effect in October 2019. And increasingly, computer algorithms are helping to determine who should be caged and who should be set “free.” Freedom — even when it’s granted, it turns out — isn’t really free.

Under new policies in California, New Jersey, New York and beyond, “risk assessment” algorithms recommend to judges whether a person who’s been arrested should be released. These advanced mathematical models — or “weapons of math destruction” as data scientist Cathy O’Neil calls them — appear colorblind on the surface but they are based on factors that are not only highly correlated with race and class, but are also significantly influenced by pervasive bias in the criminal justice system.

As O’Neil explains, “It’s tempting to believe that computers will be neutral and objective, but algorithms are nothing more than opinions embedded in mathematics.”

For the record, when people were celebrating California’s decision to eliminate cash bail, I predicted that it would result in this outcome (although I didn’t predict the use of algorithms, I did predict that since the decision to let somebody out on bail would be the sole decision of some bureaucrats, nothing would actually change).

Plausible deniability is the staple of modern politics. A politician who wants to pass a racist policy just needs to make sure that race is never mentioned in their law and when the policy results in the politician’s desired outcome, they can claim that they had no way to predict such a result. Additional plausible deniability can be added by handing decisions over to algorithms. Most people think of algorithms as mysterious wizardry performed by the high priests of science and are therefore impartial and infallible (because, you know, scientists are always impartial and never wrong).

However, algorithms do exactly what they’re created to do. If you want a machine learning algorithm to perform in a certain way, you either write it to do exactly what you want or you provide it learning data that will skew it towards the results you want. When the masses wise up and realize that the algorithm is racially biases, you can just claim that the complexity of the algorithm prevented anybody from accurately predicting what it would do. Their ignorance will make your explanation believable to them and you can claim that you’ve now made improvements that should (i.e. won’t) lead to more impartial results.

Written by Christopher Burg

November 13th, 2018 at 11:00 am

Intended Consequences

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That didn’t take long:

FERNDALE, Md. — Two police officers ordered to remove firearms from a house on a “red flag” protective order fatally shot an armed man Monday morning in Ferndale, Maryland, police said. Anne Arundel County Police arrived at the house at 5:17 a.m. to remove guns from the home under a new law that temporarily allows for the seizure of firearms if a person shows “red flags” that they are a danger to themselves or others, CBS Baltimore reports.

Let’s pretend for a moment that you hate the fact that individuals outside of the government can legally own guns. You’ve advocated for every single overt gun control bill only to see your hopes and dreams mostly squashed by politicians who preferred to deal with issues that weren’t proverbial third rails. What could you do? If you’re observant, you would quickly realize that law enforcers have a track record of gunning down people, especially when they’ve heard the word “gun” shortly before an encounter. You could then combine that factoid with a piece of legislation that isn’t overt gun control. So instead of pushing a bill that would make standard capacity magazines illegal, you would push a bill that would give law enforcers the freedom to steal guns from individuals without due process by using the magical term “dangerous individual.” From there you would just have to sit back and wait for law enforcers to start killing gun owners.

I’m fairly certain this was the thought process that many advocates of Maryland’s “red flag” law followed. Not that they would admit it. But it’s certainly an obvious solution considering the leeway law enforcers are given to use deadly force.

Written by Christopher Burg

November 13th, 2018 at 10:30 am

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

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A fight breaks out in a bar and results in four individuals being shot. One of the suspects flees but the armed security guard at the bar manages to catch him and pin him down. He calls the police and when the police arrive they see that there is an armed black man. Can you guess what happens next? Exactly what you would expect… from the old slave patrols:

An armed security guard at a bar in suburban Chicago was killed by police as he detained a suspected gunman, according to officials and witnesses.

After gunfire erupted around 04:00 local time on Sunday, Jemel Roberson, 26, chased down an attacker and knelt on his back until police arrived.

Moments after police came on the scene, an officer opened fire on Roberson, who was black, killing him.

Law enforcers in this United States have a tendency to dislike unarmed black men so it should be no surprise that they also have no tolerance for armed black men, even when they do a law enforcer’s job for them by detaining a suspect.

Monday Metal: Eagle Fly Free by Bloody Tyrant

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This week we’re going to listen to some folk metal from Taiwan:

Written by Christopher Burg

November 12th, 2018 at 10:00 am

Posted in Media

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The Collapse of Civilization

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Some people are never happy. After decades of warning about overpopulation, the BBC and other news agencies are now freaking out because population growth is beginning to decline:

There has been a remarkable global decline in the number of children women are having, say researchers.

Their report found fertility rate falls meant nearly half of countries were now facing a “baby bust” – meaning there are insufficient children to maintain their population size.

Fewer tax cattle to milk. Fewer future solders to send off to die. Fewer future slave laborers to staff the prison factories. This could be the collapse of civilization as we know it!

Of course civilization as we know it is a cesspool and I’m not convinced that nomadic peoples didn’t have the right idea, but I digress.

Why would the BBC, after warning people for decades about overpopulation, report this news as being bad? Probably because it recognizes that, as a government agency, its livelihood is at risk because a population decline makes it impossible to continue the Ponzi schemes that are government programs. When there aren’t enough tax cattle being born to prop up the system, the system necessarily has to make cuts and most politicians are going to be more apt to cut something like the BBC than something like welfare programs.

Written by Christopher Burg

November 9th, 2018 at 11:00 am

Dog and Pony Show

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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the open socialist who won a New York congressional seat, is bitching that since she doesn’t start receiving money stolen from taxpayers for another three months, she can’t afford housing in Washington DC:

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the democratic socialist and youngest woman ever elected to Congress, can’t afford to rent an apartment in Washington, D.C. before her job starts in January.

“I have three months without a salary before I’m a member of Congress. So, how do I get an apartment?” Ocasio-Cortez, 29, told the New York Times. “We’re kind of just dealing with the logistics of it day by day, but I’ve really been just kind of squirreling away and then hoping that gets me to January.”

She’s full of shit by the way. She’s three months away from receiving a guaranteed $174,000 per year salary (plus other benefits), which means she’ll have no problem whatsoever getting a short term loan from pretty much any bank. Moreover, she managed to raise enough money to run for Congress, which isn’t cheap. If she has enough suckers willing to fund her economic illiteracy all the way to Congress, she can almost certainly sucker them into dumping money into a GoFundMe for three months of housing.

But whining about an inability to afford housing will endear her to her fan base. Since they’re gullible enough to support an open socialist, they’ll buy pretty much any fool thing you tell them.

Written by Christopher Burg

November 9th, 2018 at 10:30 am

Government Helping the Homeless Again

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The Kansas City Health Department discovered that a group of individuals were feeding the homeless and decided to step in and help those poor homeless individuals in the only way it knows how:

A coordinated wave of Kansas City Health Department inspectors simultaneously shut down large picnics across the city Sunday that were serving food to homeless and hungry people.

On Monday, a city health official said they trashed the food out of concern for public safety.

[…]

It looked ugly Sunday. Home-cooked chili, stacks of foil-wrapped sandwiches, vats of soup and other food prepared by volunteers with Free Hot Soup Kansas City were dumped in bags and soaked in bleach to make sure no one went back to try to recover it.

Homeless individuals can’t get food poisoning if they starve to death!

Despite what health officials claim, this has nothing to do with concern for the homeless. This has everything to do with making the lives of homeless individuals so miserable that they have no choice but to go somewhere else. If they’re forced out of the city, city officials can claim that they solved the homeless problem and the morons who are gullible enough to believe bureaucrats will assume that all of the homeless individuals were given homes or otherwise provided for.

Written by Christopher Burg

November 9th, 2018 at 10:00 am

Voting Kills

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There are many reasons not to vote. One of the most notable is that voting is ineffective. But perhaps even higher on the list is that voting kills:

An 82-year-old great-grandmother from Texas voted for the first time ever during this year’s midterm elections. Gracie Phillips was battling pneumonia and in hospice care when she voted early Thursday. Sadly, just four days after casting her midterm ballot, Phillips died — but not before she had her voice heard and her opinion counted, her granddaughters told CBS News.

This woman voted for the first time in her life and just a few days later, BAM, dead.

Written by Christopher Burg

November 8th, 2018 at 11:00 am

Posted in Politics

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Intuitive Spell Checker

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It turns out that the spell checker on my new laptop is really intuitive:

It also turns out that when you accidentally have Firefox’s spell checker language set to English (Malawi), hilarity ensues.

Written by Christopher Burg

November 8th, 2018 at 10:30 am

Posted in Humor

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The Best Timeline

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Tuesday’s election resulted in a prisoner, dead pimp, and man with a thing for Bigfoot erotica all winning offices. We truly do live in the best timeline.

Written by Christopher Burg

November 8th, 2018 at 10:00 am