Enforcing Equality at All Costs

One of the more interesting aspects of modern American society is the fixation with equality. I’m not talking about equality under the law, people seem content with the fact that a certain group of people have legal privileges not enjoyed by everybody else. No, I’m talking about equality in all other aspects of life. Americans have become obsessed with mental equality, physical equality, and family equality. In fact things have gotten so out of hand that father-daughter and mother-son dances are being banned:

In a move that has taken some parents by surprise, the school department has announced that it is banning traditional “father-daughter” and “mother-son” activities, saying they violate state law.
Did the Cranston School Department do the right thing in banning “father-daughter” dances? (3,477 votes)

Supt. Judith Lundsten said the move was triggered by a letter ifrom the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of a single mom who had complained that her daughter had not been able to attend her father-daughter dance.

Lundsten said school attorneys found while federal Title IX legislation banning gender discrimination gives an exemption for “father-son” and “mother-daughter” events, Rhode Island law doesn’t.

This story also exemplifies my love-hate relationship with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). Because a child lacked a father she was unable to attend the father-daughter dance. In a sane world no consequences would come of this and the dance would be allowed to go on. This isn’t a sane world so the ACLU sued and caused the dance to be cancelled. Everybody suffered because one child faced inequality with those who had both parents.

Perusing perfect equality is a foolhardy mission because it’s impossible. Some people are stronger than others, some are smarter than others, and some have both parents while others have only one. These circumstances exist because reality has no concern for human equality. Yet we continue to punish everybody because one or two people face inequality due to circumstances inflicted on them by life. At this rate everybody with two legs will have to have one amputated so those missing a leg can be equal to everybody else.

You Keep Using That Word, I Do Not Think It Means What You Think It Means

Collectivists like to throw around words such as bourgeois, proletariat, exploitation, etc. One of the most interesting words they seem to enjoy haphazardly tossing here and there is nationalize. In the eyes of collectivists nationalizing businesses will make them more “socially responsible” by transferring ownership away from a single or handful of wealthy individuals to the public. What actually happens is that the ownership is transferred from a single or handful of individuals to a single or handful of individuals. Nationalization transfers ownership from private individuals to the state, which is why this article in Slate is so incredibly stupid:

Over the last several years, Facebook has become a public good and an important social resource. But as a company, it is behaving badly, and long term, that may cost it: A spring survey found that almost half of Americans believe that Facebook will eventually fade away. Even the business side has been a bit of a disaster lately, with earnings lower than expected and the news that a significant portion of Facebook profiles are fake. If neither users nor investors can be confident in the company, it’s time we start discussing an idea that might seem crazy: nationalizing Facebook.

Let me see if I follow the author’s idea. Facebook has been performing poorly compared to expectations and, in general, behaving badly. The solutions to this problem is to prop Facebook up by nationalizing it. Interesting. Here I thought the best way to deal with a problematic company was to let it go broke and fade into the irrelevance of market failures. If the author’s accusations are true then Facebook is misallocating resources that could be put to more productive uses, shouldn’t we allow those misallocated resources to be freed so that they could be used to provide services that people actually want? Wouldn’t it be wrong to force everybody to continue giving Facebook resources as since shown a propensity to use those resources poorly?

Let’s see what the author has to say:

By “nationalizing Facebook,” I mean public ownership and at least a majority share at first. When nationalizing the company restores the public trust, that controlling interest could be reduced. There are three very good reasons for this drastic step: It could fix the company’s woeful privacy practices, allow the social network to fulfill its true potential for providing social good, and force it to put its valuable data to work on significant social problems.

What? Excuse me, I need to get some Aspirin to continue with this post.

In Odin’s name, where does the author come up with the idea that nationalizing Facebook would fix the company’s woeful privacy practices? The the fuck is “social good” and how does nationalizing help Facebook provide it? What significant social problems can Facebook work on after being nationalized that it couldn’t work on before?

I want to focus on the claim that nationalizing Facebook will improve its privacy practices. As I explained earlier, when a company is nationalized ownership is transferred from private individuals to the state. The state that would gain ownership of Facebook in this case is the United States, the same state that said it was legal to wiretap your phone and track your cellular phone without a warrant. Does that sound like an entity that has the protection of your privacy in mind? I want to emphasize the stupidity the author is advocating:

It would be better to have a national privacy commissioner with real authority, some stringent privacy standards set at the federal level, and programs for making good use of some of the socially valuable data mining that firms like Facebook do. But in the United States, such sweeping innovations are probably too difficult to actually pull off, and nationalization would almost get us there. Facebook would have to rise to First Amendment standards rather than their own terms of service.

Since there are concerns about privacy on Facebook the author wants to put the federal government in charge of enforcing Facebook’s privacy policies. Yes, the same federal government that ruled wiretapping and tracking cellular phones doesn’t even require a warrant. I wonder if the author, fearing babysitters may molest his child, uses the sex offenders registry in the find babysitters.

I’m completely baffled by the author’s claim that putting the federal government in charge of Facebook would require it to rise to Fist Amendment standards when that very same federal government doesn’t itself rise to such standards.

With 80 percent of market share, Facebook is already a monopoly, and being publicly traded hasn’t made it more socially responsible.

No, it’s not a monopoly. Monopolies aren’t defined by arbitrary market shares, monopolies are defined by whether or not competition can freely enter a market. The fact that the state hasn’t made any laws protecting Facebook’s market share, demonstrated by Twitter and Google entering the social networking market unhindered, proves that no monopoly exists. Once again the author makes an accusation that Facebook isn’t “socially responsible” without actually stating what does or doesn’t make a company “socially responsible.”

But Facebook can also make mistakes with political consequences. The company has come under fire for missteps like prohibiting photos of women breast-feeding and suddenly banning “Palestinian” pages at one point. Facebook communications are an important tool for democracy advocates, including those who helped organize the Arab Spring. Yet the user policy of requiring that democratic activists in authoritarian regimes maintain “real” profiles puts activist leaders at risk. And dictators have figured out how they can use Facebook to monitor activist networks and entrap democracy advocates.

But since the security services in Syria, Iran, and China now use Facebook to monitor and entrap activists, public trust in Facebook may be misplaced. Rather than allow Facebook to serve authoritarian interests, if nationalized in the United States, we could make Facebook change its identity policy to allow democracy activists living in dictatorships to use pseudonyms.

Just a second, I need more Aspirin.

How does transferring ownership of Facebook to the federal government stop it from serving authoritarian interests? The United States government is an authoritarian regime.

Nationalizing Facebook would allow more resources to go into data mining for public health and social research.

We must nationalize Facebook to protect user’s privacy by violating their privacy! War is peace! Freedom is slavery! Ignorance is strength! It’s kind of impressive to see an author invalidate almost nine paragraphs of argumentation in one 17 word sentence.

Many academics are finding that big social network data sets can generate surprising and valuable information for addressing social problems—for instance, public health and national security.

National security? I think it’s a well-known fact at this point that the words “national security” are mutually exclusive with “protecting privacy.”

Nationalization could allow us to review the ethical implications of their management decisions.

We’re going to put an entity that assassinates American citizens without a trail in charge of determining whether or not management decisions are ethical? Can anybody explain how that would work out?

I know the author was thinking, “Gosh, nationalizing ownership of Facebook would take ownership away from those evil bourgeois pricks and transfer it to The PeopleTM!” The author must have read a great deal of socialist propaganda and decided the writings about the evils of private ownership were great while the writings about the evils of the United States government could be ignored. Even the most ardent socialist wouldn’t dream of nationalizing Facebook under the current United States regime. Nationalizing Facebook wouldn’t suddenly turn the service into a guardian of privacy, it would merely grant a gross violator of privacy absolute ownership over the service’s data. Facebook wouldn’t be wrenched from the hands of evil bourgeois and put into the hands of The PeopleTM, it would be wrenched from the hands of investors and put into the hands of a state that ceased representing The PeopleTM long ago (if it ever did in the first place).

Fighting Global Warming

Several people including Zerg539 and Rob sent me this solicitation from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for ammunition and shooting targets:

The DOC NOAA National Weather Service – Western Acquisition Division ? Boulder requires the following items, Purchase Description Determined by Line Item, to the following:
LI 001, 16,000 rounds of ammunition for semiautomatic pistols to be factory-loaded .40 S&W caliber, 180-grain jacketed hollow point (JHP). No reloads may be used with these weapons. All service furnished ammunition for issued firearms will be U.S. factory production.
?Inside Delivery? to locations below:
8,000 rounds to: Ross Lane DOC, NOAA, NMFS, OLE, NED 130 Oak Street, Suite 5, Ellsworth, ME, 04605
8,000 rounds to: Troy Audyatis, DOC, NOAA, NMFS, OLE, NED 53 North 6th Street, Room 214 New Bedford, MA, 02740., 16, Cases;
LI 002, 24,000 rounds of ammunition for semiautomatic pistols to be factory-loaded .40 S&W caliber, 180-grain jacketed hollow point (JHP). No reloads may be used with these weapons. All service furnished ammunition for issued firearms will be U.S. factory production.
?Inside Delivery? to locations below:
24,000 rounds to: Jeff Radonski, A/DSAC DOC, NOAA, NMFS, OLE, SED 263 13th Avenue South, Suite 109, St. Petersburg, FL, 33701., 24, Cases;
LI 003, 6,000 rounds of frangible, 125-grain CFRHT .40 caliber. No reloads may be used with these weapons. All service furnished ammunition for issued firearms will be U.S. factory production.
?Inside Delivery? to locations below:
6,000 rounds to: James Cassin DOC, NOAA, NMFS, OLE, NED 3350 Highway 138, Suite 218, Wall, NJ, 07719, 6, Cases;
LI 004, 500 Transtar II blue 24″ x 40″ paper targets
?Inside Delivery? to locations below:
200 paper targets to: Ross Lane DOC, NOAA, NMFS, OLE, NED 130 Oak Street, Suite 5 Ellsworth, ME, 04605
200 paper targets to: Troy Audyatis DOC, NOAA, NMFS, OLE, NED 53 North 6th Street, Room 214 New Bedford, MA, 02740.
100 paper targets to: James Cassin DOC, NOAA, NMFS, OLE, NED 3350 Highway 138, Suite 218, Wall, NJ, 07719, 500, Items;

That’s a lot of ammunition. At first I just assumed that NOAA was planning a literal war against global warming but it turns out that the weather agency has armed agents and performs raids:

They could be from the Environmental Protection Agency, the Labor or Education departments, the National Park Service, the Bureau of Land Management or the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the agency known for its weather forecasts.

Agents from NOAA, in fact, along with the Fish and Wildlife Service, raided the Miami business of Morgan Mok in 2008, seeking evidence she had broken the Endangered Species Act trading in coral.

The agents had assault rifles with them, and the case documents indicated her house and business records had been under surveillance over a six-month period, says Ms. Mok. Under the 1973 law, the departments of Interior and Commerce (home to NOAA) must write regulations to define what is endangered and how it must be protected. One of those regulations specifies coral.

Why does a weather agency need armed thugs? Because they’re a state entity and the state only knows violence. Apparently they can’t even forecast the weather without the capacity to wield violence.

Something Seems Fishy About this Story

I don’t claim to be the smartest man alive but there is something awfully fishy about this story:

Teresa Carter just doesn’t understand what happened to her son Chavis in the back of a police car. Officers picked him up, said he had drugs on him, and missed a court date on more drugs charges.

“As protocol he was handcuffed behind his back and double locked, and searched”, said Sergeant Lyle Waterworth, Jonesboro Police.

Somehow minutes later police say they heard a thumping noised, turned around and found Chavis dead, shot in the head, in the back of the squad car.

“Any given officer has missed something on a search, be it drugs, knife, razor blades, this instance it happened to be a gun” said Waterworth.

So police officers arrested the man, search him, managed to miss a firearm, and the suspect shot himself? First I must inquire how a gun was missed during the search then I must inquire why the suspect shot himself. Either that or I have to inquire about other means in which the suspect was killed, say by an officer.

What $37 Billion Doesn’t Get You

What can’t $37 billion buy you? An aircraft carrier with urinals:

The change heralded by the Gerald R. Ford class of carriers – starting with the namesake carrier due in late 2015 – is one of a number of new features meant to improve sailors’ quality of life and reduce maintenance costs, Capt. Chris Meyer said Wednesday.

Omitting urinals lets the Navy easily switch the designation of any restroom – or head, in naval parlance – from male to female, or vice versa, helping the ship adapt to changing crew compositions over time, Meyer said.

The Navy could designate a urinal-fitted area to women, of course, but the urinals would be a waste of space. Making the areas more gender-neutral is a relatively new consideration for the service, with most of its current carriers commissioned before it began deploying women on combat ships in 1994.

They list several other reasons but I think the bottom line is this: the entire everybody is equal bullshit has simply gone to new levels. Can you think of a downside to not having urinals on a ship? Anybody who has been to a busy bar can probably answer this question. Men who are forced to piss in a standard toilet generally do so standing up and I’d be polite if I said their aim was less than optimal. The toilet seat of practically every bar and restaurant you can find has been pissed on. Without urinals on these $37 billion aircraft carriers there are going to be a lot of piss covered toilet seats and I can tell you one thing, the women on board aren’t going to be too keen on switching the bathroom gender assignments.

Reality isn’t kind, it doesn’t bend itself to the desires of the everybody is equal zealots. Biologically men and women are different. At the very basic level men can’t have children whereas women can. Needless to say that apparently minor difference makes a lot of other differences also exist. Common sense people, we need to find it again.

After all, for $37 billion urinals should be accessories included with the base package. I can understand making the United States Navy pay a few billion more for the deluxe package that includes rail guns, but urinals should be standard.

The Existence of Mermaids is No Longer Debatable

I’m glad to see the United States government take time out of their busy schedule to finally put one of the most heated debates to rest:

There is no evidence that mermaids exist, a US government scientific agency has said.

The National Ocean Service made the unusual declaration in response to public inquiries following a TV show on the mythical creatures.

I’ve never been a believer in mermaids and it’s good to see my intuition was right. Now that the state has officially come out and given their official report we can all rest easy knowing there are no strange half-human half-fish creatures swimming around in the ocean.

I Think Obama is Officially Insane

It finally happened, I think Obama has finally falled off the deep end. Perhaps all the power of the presidency has driven him mad, perhaps he was mentally disturbed before every running for office, who knows? Either way the words coming out of his mouth aren’t making any sense:

Republicans “have gone from a preference for market-based solutions to an absolutism… [to] a belief that all regulations are bad; that government has no role to play,” said Obama…

As an individual who actually believes the government has no role to play, I must call bullshit on this. Republicans, in general, are just as statist as the Democrats. The Republicans claim they support “deregulation” and “free markets” but what they really support is cronyism and tightly controlled markets, same as the Democrats (granted, the Democrats are actually honest about their intentions to control markets). While the Democrats believe the government should provide welfare, subsidized contraceptives, healthcare, education, and protection the Republicans believe the government should provide welfare, make the use of contraceptives illegal, healthcare, education, and protection. Neither party believes the government has no role to play, that belief lies with those of us who dare oppose the state in its entirety.

The president’s divisive strategy is designed to persuade swing-voters that the former governor of Massachusetts is a radical libertarian…

Good luck with that, tell us how it turns out for you.

Considering the evidence at hand it seems wise to have Obama committed to psychiatric care before he does something really crazy like launch a nuclear weapon at China.

It’s all Fun and Games Until Zombies Show Up

It appears that all of my years of practice, preparing, and planning my soon pay off. The zombie apocalypse may have just begun:

One man was shot to death by Miami police, and another man is fighting for his life after he was attacked, and his face allegedly half eaten, by a naked man on the MacArthur Causeway off ramp Saturday, police said.

The horror began about 2 p.m. when a series of gunshots were heard on the ramp, which is along NE 13th Street, just south of The Miami Herald building.

According to police sources, a road ranger saw a naked man chewing on another man’s face and shouted on his loud speaker for him to back away.Meanwhile, a woman also saw the incident and flagged down a police officer who was in the area.

The officer, who has not been identified, approached and, seeing what was happening, also ordered the naked man to back away. When he continued the assault, the officer shot him, police sources said. The attacker failed to stop after being shot, forcing the officer to continue firing. Witnesses said they heard at least a half dozen shots.

For the sake of humanity I hope the police show the naked face eater in the head, doing anything less is meaningless. Furthermore they better keep the victim isolated as he’s likely going to rise from the dead and try to eat somebody else’s face.

This is why we have to train people, zombies are coming.

You May be a Terrorist if…

With suspected terrorists being held without trial at Guantanamo Bay (Gitmo) the evidence held by the state must be insurmountable right? That really depends on your definition of insurmountable:

It is cheap, basic and widely available around the world. Yet the Casio F-91W digital watch was declared to be “the sign of al-Qaida” and a contributing factor to continued detention of prisoners by the analysts stationed at Guantánamo Bay.

Briefing documents used to train staff in assessing the threat level of new detainees advise that possession of the F-91W – available online for as little as £4 – suggests the wearer has been trained in bomb making by al-Qaida in Afghanistan.

There is a list on Wikipedia of Gitmo detainees held, at least in part, because they were in possession of a Casio watch. In other words, for around $10.00 you to can become a member of Al Qaida. You would think the premier terrorist ground in the world, the organization that is so insidious and power that they have been the primary target of America’s military might since 2001, wouldn’t be such cheap bastards. The least they could do is splurge for a G-Shock.

With “evidence” like this almost anybody can be a terrorist. The Casio F91W isn’t exactly a rare watch, you can pick them up almost anywhere. It’s been in common production since 1991 and is still being produced, a demonstration of the watch’s popularity. Until now I’ve never owned one of these, I usually don’t go for extremely cheap and mass produced watches, but I’m going to order one now. Somehow I still haven’t made it on the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) no-fly list, hopefully being in possession of an F91W will finally get me on that list (then I only have a few more government watch lists to get my name on before I’ve “collected them all”).

I Didn’t Realize We Had One of Those

Of all the political parties in the United States I didn’t realized this was one of them:

The American Nazi Party has registered its first lobbyist in Washington DC.

John Bowles, 55, told US media he wanted to address political rights and ballot access and he expected congressmen would accept meetings.

Lobbying was something the party would “try out for the first time and see if it flies,” Mr Bowles told ABC News. He registered as a lobbyist this week.

The American Nazi Party has its work cut out for it, at least if it’s hoping to be the premier fascist party in the United States. Right now the top two contenders for most prominent fascist party are the Republican Party and the Democrat Party. The American Nazi Party is really going to have to step up their game to compete with the two elephants in the political room.