News avoidance lurches right along. Mix of nooz and think pieces today.
New software (so far W*nd*ws only) aims to help activists detect and foil government surveillance. Get it here. Can’t say how effective it’s going to be, but it’s endorsed by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Amnesty International, and other big-timers in the field. (H/T MJR)
Along the same lines, Let’s Encrypt aims to bring SSL/TSL to the masses by taking the difficulties and mysteries out of those pesky web site certificates. (Remember: Encryption is subversive! Or so our masters claim. Which is, of course, all the more reason to do it.)
If you were talented enough to play in the NFL, would you quit to become a farmer? Jason Brown did.
Holleee freakin’ cr*p! The shooter who did this was lucky he didn’t (in the famous words of Ralphie’s mother) “put his eye out.” His (or her) eye. Or face. Or hands. Or parts of the guys standing next to him at the range. Just looking at that photo is mind boggling.
Which dietary supplement claims are backed by evidence and which aren’t? Interesting chart. But also not the be-all and end-all of truth. Much is still unknown.
Local cranberry growers who lost their contract with Ocean Spray landed 20 pounds of their harvest on furrydoc the other day. What do you do with 20 pounds of cranberries? Furrydoc shared the bounty and instructions for drying.
I took a couple of pounds and they’re in the drier now, some unsweetened and some drizzled with honey.
I’m not so big on cranberries, but I do like the dried ones in salads and trail mixes. Good to have a few locally grown superfoods among the preps, too.
Knitting today. Not only for the soul but this time, the body, too. Ready to start cabling.
Just as soon as I find those wandering third needles.
I was surprised and gratified the other day to realize quite a few guys hereabouts had knitted or crocheted. I am at this moment wearing fingerless gloves (aka arm warmers or better yet gauntlets) I made with wool gifted to me by one of those knitting guys.
(Pattern for that particular glove here. Many others here.)
Finally, some things not so mundane
Saturday, December 13. Washington gun owners rally: We Will Not Comply with I-594. Over 6,000 already signed up.
When I finally narrowed the search down far enough it turned out that the quote was actually from me. But only because my brain badly mangled and probably misinterpreted something actually said by Mark Twain.
Ah, the human mind. Such a wondrous instrument.
Nevertheless, the non-quote led me to something I blogged here back in 2011. It’s the fourth of a series on “the responsibilities of a resident of a police state” and it’s worth a re-visit.
An elderly woman got the last word after locking a police officer in her basement, and later suing the police.
Venus Green, who was 87 when she was handcuffed, roughed up and injured by police, will receive $95,000 as part of a settlement with Baltimore City. The city chose to settle the case instead of taking a chance in front of a jury.
“We thought we would have a difficult time in front of a city jury, or any jury,” Baltimore City solicitor George Nilson said.
Green was so put out by what police officers did, the city said she locked one of them in her basement.
Read more at the link. It just gets better. Yes, cops treated Venus Green like cr*p. But she never bent an inch, and clearly she won this case because city officials were not about to go to court and say their armed agents brutalized an 87-year-old retired schoolteacher because they “felt threatened” by her. Even though she is obviously one tough — and well-informed — lady.
Hundreds of students walked out of classrooms around suburban Denver on Tuesday in protest over a conservative-led school board proposal to focus history education on topics that promote citizenship, patriotism and respect for authority, in a show of civil disobedience that the new standards would aim to downplay.
Yeah, yeah, I know that school curricula have always been political playthings. I came through prison school in one of those “shut up and obey” eras. Learning only the positive, patriotic, authority-respecting version of history and “civics” was oppressive and dishonest — and led anybody with a brain to distrust people who felt such a need to hide reality.
Actually, the propaganda of “my day” was about as oppressive and dishonest as all politically driven schooling inevitably is, whether “right” or “left.” Curricula have swung in all manner of weird directions since then.
And yeah, yeah, I know the answer is get rid of government schooling. But in a country that was born in defiance of law and authority, I still can’t help but think this is a smile-worthy development.
I’m deadlining this week and also dealing with the aftermath of my crushed roof, so posting may (or maybe not; we’ll see how it goes) be light.
But here’s some good reading. This summer (and now, this fall) Vin Suprynowicz has been running a long series on what happened (and may yet happen) at the Bundy ranch. His first episode (1 of 6) is here. His latest (5 of 6) is here.
I don’t see a good chain of links between them, but you can find them by searching one of the archive categories they appear in, like private property.
Fall falls today and Mother Nature has decided to be predictable for once. First big rainstorm with potentially high winds comes in tonight. I’m ready for it and so is the main part of my roof, thanks to you.
We’ll see how that one fragile corner takes it. I’m still despairing over what happened, but that corner can be closed off from the rest of the house, if need be.
Contractors Mike and Joe looked at the problem yesterday and are coming back today to tear into the ceiling for closer inspection. Their tentative judgment about the cause: not the roofers, but amateurish construction way back when (merely aggravated by the roofers and before that, by that falling tree yanking on the fragile roof structure when it pulled down the electrical stanchion).