The Death Of Retirement

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HRM Resident

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Nov 29, 2021, 12:55:14 PM11/29/21
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From “Forbes” magazine that’s behind a xxx per month pay wall:

==========

Retirement is dead, or at least in the original sense of sitting on the
porch in a rocking chair is.

Today, retirement is portrayed by many as the point in time to dream of.
People save their entire life, they work hard and sacrifice time with
family and give up friends, all in order to reach this magical but
completely arbitrary milestone. However, when the time comes, it amazes me
how often they haven’t asked themselves even the most basic questions: What
is next? What will I actually do in retirement? Who will I be? And possibly
most important: who am I going to do it with? Especially when you consider
retirement is often cited as a leading contributor to the increasing number
of gray divorces – divorces occurring over age 50.

Having to rebuild personal relationships, losing professional networks, and
no longer having the identity of a business owner, executive, surgeon,
athlete or other profession can be discomforting. Some retirees find the
core of their very identity is lost, especially when they haven’t built
strong personal networks and have been solely reliant on their professional
identity.

Study after study show that many who retire in the traditional sense often
disengage from what actually brings them joy. And that disengagement can
lead to failing health, depression and cognitive issues – all potentially
causing an eventual decrease in both health span and how individuals rate
their quality of life.

But what are your options if your current career isn’t your forever career?
And what if you are already retired! The answer is simple – don’t retire!
Engage and enter what I call your Era of Choice.

Some of the most vibrant and long-lived individuals don’t retire at any
age. Instead, they engage and continually reinvent themselves. For you it
might be volunteering, reengaging in an occupation you may have left,
starting a new career, developing new social networks, or finding
activities outside of work environments. The key is to be engaged with life
and be in the position to make the choices to live the life you desire. For
example, I have no personal plans to ever retire. In my Era of Choice I
will stay engaged outside of work through a combination of focusing on
friends and family, continuing my education, travel, writing, and mentoring
the next generation of leaders and entrepreneurs.

The shift in mindset is not to retire, but to have enough financial
independence to create your personal Era of Choice – when you are fully in
the financial driver’s seat. That is, your lifestyle no longer depends on
your career or business. If you elect to earn less, or even earn nothing,
you could still live the life you desire.

In this framework, your goal should not be to retire but instead plan for
your lifestyle to evolve as financial independence allows you to choose the
opportunities you want to pursue.

Of course, having choices is not enough, making the choices that affect
your lifestyle and understanding why you make those choices is important.
On the Japanese island of Okinawa, they have developed the concept of
Ikigai. The term Ikigai comes from the Japanese words iki meaning alive or
life and gai meaning benefit or worth. Roughly translated it means being
alive and giving your life worth or meaning.

In the U.S., we have been taught that retirement is what you get at the end
of the race, and it is about how you entertain yourself from the point when
the race is over until you die. This is radically different than making
choices through the filter of Ikigai. Ikigai moves the focus from how to
entertain oneself to how to feel fulfilled.

Does going from an entertainment to fulfillment focus make a difference?
For the Okinawan’s and other Blue Zones citizens with similar lifestyle
concepts to Ikigai it does. Blue Zones, are the rare areas where
individuals have been found to have much longer than average lifespans, and
are currently being studied to uncover the root causes of their increased
longevity. Much of the research focuses on their diets or movement, however
they have another commonality: the penchant to treasure the concepts of
fulfillment and community for one’s entire life. This mindset has been
shown to lead to healthier and happier lifestyles – not to mention longer
lifespans.

So whether you are just starting out, you have retired in the fullest sense
of the word, or are somewhere in the middle, there are concrete steps to
turn your retirement goal into a new Era of Choice that can be shared with
those you care most about – after all who wants to be put out to pasture.

Begin by taking stock of where you are today by asking yourself some
introspective questions: Do your relationships need work? Are you taking
care of your health? Do your hobbies engage you or just provide a little
entertainment? Can you identify the things that make you want to get up in
the morning? Is your financial plan designed around a terminal point or
around creating a lifestyle you want to be able to adjust to over time?

It’s critical to understand that this new plan may or may not include a
point where earning income in the traditional sense ever comes to an end
and that some of your previous goals may be replaced by something more
fulfilling.

Now that the hard, introspective part is done, update your plan and make it
more than just the numbers. Identify and include areas of fulfillment and
enrichment, and treat them with the importance they are due. Similar to
correcting financial gaps, you may need to develop specific plans to
improve more personal areas designed to lead to greater fulfillment.
Examples could be planned and regular date nights with your spouse,
activities with friends, or improving your health through diet and
exercise. After all, just as your bank account doesn’t grow without regular
deposits, your health and relationships won’t thrive without regular
investments of time and effort.

Finally, implement your updated plan with the realization that you will
adapt over time, so the plan will need to as well. When you get older and
your values and abilities change, what you find engaging today will most
likely adjust as well. For this reason, it is important to commit to
consistently finding areas of growth and expansion in order to stay engaged
and involved in active communities.

The basic truth of this entire concept is simple: don’t wait! Don’t
sacrifice friends and family to some point in the future, or put off what
fulfills you to some arbitrary date – or possibly forever? Change your
mindset from work hard until you put yourself out to pasture in an endless
retirement to an Era of Choice where you immediately move to a more robust
and fulfilling life. As your resources grow your opportunities will as
well, but the very act of starting to plan for a future of fulfilling new
starts instead of just begging for your current job to end is the day you
take your first step into your new Era of Choice.

==========

--
HRM Resident

Mike Spencer

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Nov 29, 2021, 9:04:54 PM11/29/21
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I have a long-time friend, in financial services since '64, a banker
since the 70s, who slacked off the last couple of years before
retirement 14 years ago by cutting back to 60-70 hour weeks. A year
after retirment, he wrote:

Spencer, have you noticed that doing nothing is *extremely* time
consuming?

But then, his idea of "doing nothing" involves a fairly substantial
value of "nothing". :-)

--
Mike Spencer Nova Scotia, Canada

Lucretia Borgia

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Nov 30, 2021, 7:45:08 AM11/30/21
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On 29 Nov 2021 22:04:44 -0400, Mike Spencer
I always think of J V-G, remember how for at least five years he
counted down daily to retirement date? :)

HRM Resident

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Nov 30, 2021, 8:29:45 AM11/30/21
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Like many of us, your friend probably has a case of the “can’t sit
stills!” I know I do. There’s always something to do and it nags at a
person if they ignore it. On the other hand I have known people who are
contented to sit in a rocking chair all day watching traffic go by.

I recall a fellow in the community where I grew up. In the 1960s to
around 1980 he had the then UI (now EI) system down to a science. Maxed
out his “stamps” ASAP every year, and did nothing for 7-8 months. Put wood
in the stove, ate and during the fall/winter checked his rabbit snare line.
His advice to his two sons was, “Don’t get up dungeon dark in the morning
and drive to a job in the snow. Let the other fellows do that. Sit down
and put your feet up on the oven door. Watch the cars slide around in the
snow.”

It takes all kinds!

--
HRM Resident

Lucretia Borgia

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Nov 30, 2021, 8:48:39 AM11/30/21
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I couldn't have done that - too much energy, however now I like to
carry on in an ordinary routine, my elder daughter is taking some of
my fathers things over to a museum and wanted me to go with her, I
would have enjoyed the museum bit but NO WAY am I travelling again,
especially not now with all the tests etc to be done.

They are quite expensive, didn't realise that until my younger
daughter had a test Sunday, $180, to go off to Barbados to go on a
cruise. I feel it is right enough though, it shouldn't be on our
health system to give her that!

HRM Resident

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Nov 30, 2021, 9:17:31 AM11/30/21
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Lucretia Borgia <lucreti...@fl.it> wrote:
> On 29 Nov 2021 22:04:44 -0400, Mike Spencer
> <m...@bogus.nodomain.nowhere> wrote:
>
>>
>> I have a long-time friend, in financial services since '64, a banker
>> since the 70s, who slacked off the last couple of years before
>> retirement 14 years ago by cutting back to 60-70 hour weeks. A year
>> after retirement, he wrote:
>>
>> Spencer, have you noticed that doing nothing is *extremely* time
>> consuming?
>>
>> But then, his idea of "doing nothing" involves a reasonably substantial
>> value of "nothing". :-)
>
> I always think of J V-G, remember how for at least five years he
> counted down daily to retirement date? :)
>

J-V-G indeed did that. He had a humorous way of describing his office
politics. He offered a lot of examples, but the one about having to stand
around drinking coffee out of styrofoam cups and eat sickening sweet cake
every few months when it was someone’s birthday had me rolling on the
floor!

15-20 minutes of torture for everyone involved, yet not a birthday went
by without having to go through this silly ritual. He and I didn’t work
together (I have never met him), but we’re both retired Public Servants.
The last five years can be harsh. You don’t think about it until you get
that close. The rules and silly rituals start driving you nuts.

When you first “graduate” from private industry to government, the
bureaucracy is insufferable. They can hold up a $20K project for a week
before Fred and Mary return from vacation to sign off a requisition to get
a $10 item! I went to Canadian Tire once and bought a $4.99 Robertson
screwdriver out of my own money to get the show on the road. Someone told
management, and they went crazy. They probably spent $500-$1000 meeting
and deciding how to tell me never to do that again.

So, after about five years, you become conditioned to the bureaucracy
and take it in stride. But after 30-35 years of these little annoying
things being seemingly acceptable, you run out of patience.

J-V-G and I are not unique. I believe most government workers burn out
about five years before retirement. Then some won’t retire. They work
until they drop. I will, but not for the government! I plan on going
every day until I check out of this clown factory. The difference is I
will be doing what I want and when I want.

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Nov 30, 2021, 10:17:17 AM11/30/21
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Wow! That's really bad. Glad I never worked like that. :)

Our little lab was perpetually short on money. I bought my own
accessories like floppy disks, CDs, DVDs backup external drives
and even mice and keyboards and monitors when they failed. We
did what we could to keep going. If we went through a bureaucracy
we would not have lasted as long as we did.

>
> So, after about five years, you become conditioned to the bureaucracy
> and take it in stride. But after 30-35 years of these little annoying
> things being seemingly acceptable, you run out of patience.
>
> J-V-G and I are not unique. I believe most government workers burn out
> about five years before retirement. Then some won’t retire. They work
> until they drop. I will, but not for the government! I plan on going
> every day until I check out of this clown factory. The difference is I
> will be doing what I want and when I want.
>

I worked 6 years beyond retirement, the last 2 for free. The money had
run out. I stopped going into the lab when my wife became suddenly
retired and neither of us had a good reason to go into town. I
continued to do a few jobs from home after that for free. It's hard
to completely extricate oneself from research entanglements. It just
slowly fades away.

HRM Resident

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Nov 30, 2021, 12:07:03 PM11/30/21
to
On 2021-11-30 11:17 a.m., James Warren wrote, in part:

>snip<

>>I went to Canadian Tire once and bought a $4.99 Robertson
>> screwdriver out of my own money to get the show on the road. Someone
>> told
>> management, and they went crazy. They probably spent $500-$1000 meeting
>> and deciding how to tell me never to do that again.
>
> Wow! That's really bad. Glad I never worked like that. :)
>
> Our little lab was perpetually short on money. I bought my own
> accessories like floppy disks, CDs, DVDs backup external drives
> and even mice and keyboards and monitors when they failed. We
> did what we could to keep going. If we went through a bureaucracy
> we would not have lasted as long as we did.
>
Here's the "problem." In private industry (for profit) you can't
sit around and waste money waiting for the "bureaucracy" to approve
trivial stuff. And they have ways to get the supplies to workers
efficiently, using the cheapest part that will do the job, cutting
corners that don't matter, etc. This is great for Walmart, a hardware
store, etc. Or a contractor building house or a university.

But not for education and health care, to name two. Even
infrastructure like highways, the Internet, etc., are best handled by an
organization not working "for profit."

Government is different. It doesn't have to make a profit. However,
take away the "bureaucracy," and after a short while, one finds that
most lucrative contracts end up going to friends, relatives, etc. of
those making the decision. Stealing tax dollars or diverting government
money to companies with a lousy track record of delivering quality.
Knowing the deputy minister helps get these contracts!

To prevent this, multiple people have to review purchases and
spending that's not trivial. Having to have those "multiple people" all
weigh in stops the vast majority of the "theft" and "fraud" but slows
things to an inefficient crawl in many situations. So which do we want?
People stealing our money or spending it inefficiently?

In my career, I saw the level of bureaucracy fluctuate up and down
a lot. Why? Because occasionally, one of these "crooked contracts" or
"sole-sourced acquisitions" gets caught, and the hammer comes down.
After a few years, someone asks why do we need 4 signatures on this? 1-2
is enough. And the cycle repeats!



>>
>> So, after about five years, you become conditioned to the
>> bureaucracy
>> and take it in stride. But after 30-35 years of these little annoying
>> things being seemingly acceptable, you run out of patience.
>>
>> J-V-G and I are not unique. I believe most government workers
>> burn out
>> about five years before retirement. Then some won’t retire. They work
>> I plan on going every day until I check out of this clown factory.
>> The difference is I
>> will be doing what I want and when I want.
>>
>
> I worked 6 years beyond retirement, the last 2 for free. The money had
> run out. I stopped going into the lab when my wife became suddenly
> retired and neither of us had a good reason to go into town. I
> continued to do a few jobs from home after that for free. It's hard
> to completely extricate oneself from research entanglements. It just
> slowly fades away.
>

I walked out of my building on my final day and literally never
returned for a single day. I only kept in contact with 2-3 of my former
co-workers. We all weren't "friends." We served the same "sentence" in
the same prison. Made friends with a few, but mostly they were just
acquaintances.

I sort of do the same kind of work, but on my own gear, and I
create things I want, not for someone in Ottawa who will be defeated the
next election. What time I have left is used for something I always
wanted to do but never had time. So now I garden, do yard work, did 3-4
years on minor blacksmithing, etc. I also volunteer a couple of days a
week for charities. You know about one. The other has an NDA
(non-disclosure agreement), so I can't talk about it.

All of this to re-iterate "I can't sit still!" I am doing something
from 6 AM until 10 PM. We watch too much TV in the evenings, but before
~6 PM, you won't find me parked in front of a TV!


--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Nov 30, 2021, 12:18:54 PM11/30/21
to
I agree, a certain amount of bureaucracy is necessary for large or
public projects.
But for a 3 or 4 man team it gets in the way. Shortcuts are
necessary to get the job done. We didn't have infinite or
indefinite time to get it done.
I can sit still. I prefer cerebral work. I used to garden and other
physical work. I enjoyed. These days I try to keep my brain engaged
to prevent losing it. Is it too late? :)

HRM Resident

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Nov 30, 2021, 1:35:40 PM11/30/21
to
On 2021-11-30 1:18 p.m., James Warren wrote, in part:

>snip<

>
> I agree, a certain amount of bureaucracy is necessary for large or
> public projects.
> But for a 3 or 4 man team it gets in the way. Shortcuts are
> necessary to get the job done. We didn't have infinite or
> indefinite time to get it done.
>

And that's very true. The bigger an organization or work unit is,
the more bureaucracy it requires. I talked to an auditor who had worked
for one of the big finance companies for 7-8 years before joining the
government. He told me that the finance company wasn't as full of red
tape as the government, but it was close. For the same reason . . . more
employees = more checks and balances.

I worked on a construction site during the summers for a few years,
about 1970-1973. We were cutting a lot of trees with chain saws for an
additional building. There were about 5 of us. We ran out of gas for the
saws. The boss gave me $10 and told me to take his truck to the nearest
gas station and get more. A 5-minute drive. All we had were those old
glass 1-gallon molasses jugs. I got 3-4, and the guys were all back to
work in 15-minutes. The gas guy didn't want to fill them because they'd
just brought in the plastic, red container laws.

My boss preempted this by telling me to remind the guy to remember
who he was renting the gas station from! Had this been the government,
we'd have been a week waiting for fuel. So yes, smaller, 1-2
"management" outfits are far more efficient. Now, had a gallon of gas
spilled, it may have been different if one of us dropped those jugs.
There's no correct answer. Another "it depends" situation.

>snip<

>
> I can sit still. I prefer cerebral work. I used to garden and other
> physical work. I enjoyed. These days I try to keep my brain engaged
> to prevent losing it. Is it too late? :)
>

I went down that road and got soft and lazy . . . and somewhat fat!
10 years ago, I said "Enough of this!" and lost 45 pounds. I haven't put
it back on.

I started doing as much physical work as I could stand . . .
arthritis is a bastard, but I still do everything except the
blacksmithing. I could solve that "problem" with a power hammer, but
they are expensive, and I am not equipped to set one up, etc. So I keep
at it a bit, but only for an hour or two every few weeks.

The cerebral way works, but one ends up fat and stiff! At least I
did. So I will combine this "cerebral" aspect of my day with physical
work as long as I can.

Sitting still was a phrase I used to mean "do nothing but look out
the window and watch time go by." I didn't mean it literally. Pondering
cosmology, physics, philosophy and writing stuff like this isn't
"sitting still."

============================

#!/usr/bin/python3
# -*- coding: utf-8 -*-

#
# Program to count 0-65535 repeatedly and flash 16 LEDs to
# demonstrate an 16-bit counter. Output is displayed on
# stdout as decimal, octal, hex and binary.
#
# Hardware Pinout:
#
# ,--------------------------------.
# | oooooooooooooooooooo J8 +====
# | 1ooooooooooooooooooo | USB
# | +====
# | Pi Model 4 |
# | +----+ +====
# | |D| |SoC | | USB
# | |S| | | +====
# | |I| +----+ |
# | |C| +======
# | |S| | Net
# | pwr |HDMI| |I||A| +======
# `-| |--------| |----|V|-------'
#
# J8:
# 3V3 (1) (2) 5V
# GPIO2 (3) (4) 5V
# GPIO3 (5) (6) GND
# GPIO4 (7) (8) GPIO14
# GND (9) (10) GPIO15
# GPIO17 (11) (12) GPIO18
# GPIO27 (13) (14) GND
# GPIO22 (15) (16) GPIO23
# 3V3 (17) (18) GPIO24
# GPIO10 (19) (20) GND
# GPIO9 (21) (22) GPIO25
# GPIO11 (23) (24) GPIO8
# GND (25) (26) GPIO7
# GPIO0 (27) (28) GPIO1
# GPIO5 (29) (30) GND
# GPIO6 (31) (32) GPIO12
# GPIO13 (33) (34) GND
# GPIO19 (35) (36) GPIO16
# GPIO26 (37) (38) GPIO20
# GND (39) (40) GPIO21


import RPi.GPIO as GPIO
import time


def ask_yesno(question):
ans = ""
while True:
while (ans != "Y" and ans !="N"):
ans = input(question + " [Y/n] ").upper()
if (ans == "") :
ans = "Y"
if (ans == "Y" or ans == ""):
return True
elif ans == "N":
return False


print ("=== Binary counter ===")
print()

GPIO.setwarnings(False)
GPIO.setmode(GPIO.BOARD) # access pins by their physical numbers
# Set them all as outputs
GPIO.setup(33, GPIO.OUT) # pin 33 for bit 0
GPIO.setup(37, GPIO.OUT) # pin 37 for bit 1
GPIO.setup(7, GPIO.OUT) # pin 7 for bit 2
GPIO.setup(11, GPIO.OUT) # pin 11 for bit 3
GPIO.setup(13, GPIO.OUT) # pin 13 for bit 4
GPIO.setup(15, GPIO.OUT) # pin 15 for bit 5
GPIO.setup(19, GPIO.OUT) # pin 19 for bit 6
GPIO.setup(21, GPIO.OUT) # pin 21 for bit 7
GPIO.setup(35, GPIO.OUT) # pin 35 for bit 8
GPIO.setup(31, GPIO.OUT) # pin 31 for bit 9
GPIO.setup(29, GPIO.OUT) # pin 31 for bit 10
GPIO.setup(8 , GPIO.OUT) # pin 8 for bit 11
GPIO.setup(10, GPIO.OUT) # pin 10 for bit 12
GPIO.setup(12, GPIO.OUT) # pin 12 for bit 13
GPIO.setup(16, GPIO.OUT) # pin 16 for bit 14
GPIO.setup(18, GPIO.OUT) # pin 18 for bit 15

counter = 0
print ("Press Ctrl-C to exit")

try:
while True:
GPIO.output(33, counter & 0x01) # set bit 0
GPIO.output(37, counter & 0x02) # set bit 1
GPIO.output(7, counter & 0x04) # set bit 2
GPIO.output(11, counter & 0x08) # set bit 3
GPIO.output(13, counter & 0x10) # set bit 4
GPIO.output(15, counter & 0x20) # set bit 5
GPIO.output(19, counter & 0x40) # set bit 6
GPIO.output(21, counter & 0x80) # set bit 7
GPIO.output(35, counter & 0x100) # set bit 8
GPIO.output(31, counter & 0x200) # set bit 9
GPIO.output(29, counter & 0x400) # set bit 10
GPIO.output(8 , counter & 0x800) # set bit 11
GPIO.output(10 , counter & 0x1000) # set bit 12
GPIO.output(12 , counter & 0x2000) # set bit 13
GPIO.output(16 , counter & 0x4000) # set bit 14
GPIO.output(18 , counter & 0x8000) # set bit 15
print('{0:05d} (Decimal) '.format(counter),end='')
print('{0:05o} (Octal) '.format(counter),end='')
print('{0:04X} (Hex) '.format(counter),end='')
print('{0:016b} (Binary)'.format(counter))
time.sleep(0.001) # Delay a bit
counter += 1 % 65536 # increment counter
up to 65535, then reset to 0
if (counter > 65535) :
time.sleep(4.0)
counter = 0

except KeyboardInterrupt:
print()
print("Keyboard interrupt")
print()
if ( ask_yesno("Clear the GPIO pins?") == True ) :
GPIO.cleanup()
print("GPIO Cleaned")

============================

--
HRM Resident

HRM Resident

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Nov 30, 2021, 2:04:45 PM11/30/21
to
On 2021-11-30 1:18 p.m., James Warren wrote, in part:

>
> I prefer cerebral work. >

Too much of that will strain your brain muscles! :-)

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Nov 30, 2021, 2:31:47 PM11/30/21
to
On 2021-11-30 2:35 PM, HRM Resident wrote:
> On 2021-11-30 1:18 p.m., James Warren wrote, in part:
>
>       >snip<
>
>>
>> I agree, a certain amount of bureaucracy is necessary for large or
>> public projects.
>> But for a 3 or 4 man team it gets in the way. Shortcuts are
>> necessary to get the job done. We didn't have infinite or
>> indefinite time to get it done.
>>
>
>     And that's very true. The bigger an organization or work unit is,
> the more bureaucracy it requires. I talked to an auditor who had worked
> for one of the big finance companies for 7-8 years before joining the
> government. He told me that the finance company wasn't as full of red
> tape as the government, but it was close. For the same reason . . . more
> employees = more checks and balances.

Indeed!

>
>     I worked on a construction site during the summers for a few years,
> about 1970-1973. We were cutting a lot of trees with chain saws for an
> additional building. There were about 5 of us. We ran out of gas for the
> saws. The boss gave me $10 and told me to take his truck to the nearest
> gas station and get more. A 5-minute drive. All we had were those old
> glass 1-gallon molasses jugs. I got 3-4, and the guys were all back to
> work in 15-minutes. The gas guy didn't want to fill them because they'd
> just brought in the plastic, red container laws.
>
>     My boss preempted this by telling me to remind the guy to remember
> who he was renting the gas station from! Had this been the government,
> we'd have been a week waiting for fuel. So yes, smaller, 1-2
> "management" outfits are far more efficient. Now, had a gallon of gas
> spilled, it may have been different if one of us dropped those jugs.
> There's no correct answer. Another "it depends" situation.

Sounds like a summer job situation. :)

>
>       >snip<
>
>>
>> I can sit still. I prefer cerebral work. I used to garden and other
>> physical work. I enjoyed. These days I try to keep my brain engaged
>> to prevent losing it. Is it too late? :)
>>
>
>     I went down that road and got soft and lazy . . . and somewhat fat!
> 10 years ago, I said "Enough of this!" and lost 45 pounds. I haven't put
> it back on.
>
>     I started doing as much physical work as I could stand . . .
> arthritis is a bastard, but I still do everything except the
> blacksmithing. I could solve that "problem" with a power hammer, but
> they are expensive, and I am not equipped to set one up, etc. So I keep
> at it a bit, but only for an hour or two every few weeks.

My arthritis limits me more than that. Sad, when I remember 20
years ago I could run a half marathon. ?(

>
>     The cerebral way works, but one ends up fat and stiff! At least I
> did. So I will combine this "cerebral" aspect of my day with physical
> work as long as I can.

That's where I've been for a few years.

>
>     Sitting still was a phrase I used to mean "do nothing but look out
> the window and watch time go by." I didn't mean it literally. Pondering
> cosmology, physics, philosophy and writing stuff like this isn't
> "sitting still."

Nope. It's not. :)
Looks like my LINC-8 days except for the high level language.

I remember doing this sort of thing with relays on a "relay rack"
setup with timers and motors for food dispensers. Those were
fun days! :)

James Warren

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Nov 30, 2021, 2:33:04 PM11/30/21
to
On 2021-11-30 3:04 PM, HRM Resident wrote:
> On 2021-11-30 1:18 p.m., James Warren wrote, in part:
>
>>
>> I prefer cerebral work. >
>
>     Too much of that will strain your brain muscles! :-)
>

And it hurts too. :)

Gotta nap afterwards.

HRM Resident

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Nov 30, 2021, 3:23:01 PM11/30/21
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On 2021-11-30 3:31 p.m., James Warren wrote:

>snip<

>
> Sounds like a summer job situation. :)
>

It was. To help pay for my education. Mostly pick and shovel, and
other types of hard, physical work. Taught me I didn't want to drop out
of school after grade 10-11!


>
> My arthritis limits me more than that. Sad, when I remember 20
> years ago I could run a half marathon. ?(
>

That's what it did here. In 2015, I felt like I was 40. By
2018-2019, everything hurt! So we go slower. :-)


>
> Looks like my LINC-8 days except for the high level language.
>
> I remember doing this sort of thing with relays on a "relay rack"
> setup with timers and motors for food dispensers. Those were
> fun days! :)
>

That's why I'm doing it. The HP-2114B I cut my teeth on was a
16-bit machine and we had to convert octal -> binary -> decimal in our
heads. These Raspberry PI things are great for bit twiddling.

But they ain't much against those 4-5 GHz 10-core Intel and AMD
CPUs they are cranking out these days. Some of the AMDs apparently have
18 cores (a core being roughly equivalent to a CPU.)

--
HRM Resident

HRM Resident

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Nov 30, 2021, 3:24:51 PM11/30/21
to
Take two aspirin, wash them down with an 10-0z glass of Lamb's 151
proof black rum and . . . well, never mind. If you do that, you won't
be calling anyone again. Ever. :-)

--
HRM Resident

Lucretia Borgia

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Nov 30, 2021, 4:44:07 PM11/30/21
to
On Tue, 30 Nov 2021 16:24:49 -0400, HRM Resident <hrm...@gmail.com>
wrote:
Actually you'd still be alive. All the hype about not drinking with
meds is just a cover for pharma in the case of alcoholics. A drink or
two and aspirin, not going to make a difference, it was a pharmacist
who told me that. Sometimes it will lessen the effects of the meds,
but not kill you.

HRM Resident

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Nov 30, 2021, 5:33:32 PM11/30/21
to
Errr . . . the point was the 10 ounces of 151! :-) The aspirin is
irrelevant in this context. 151 proof is 75% alcohol—nearly double the
strength of the 40% regular hard liquor in the NSLC stores.

10 ounces of that is about the same as a litre of Scotch! :-)

Thinking about that, he hasn’t replied. Maybe he tried it!

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Nov 30, 2021, 7:50:00 PM11/30/21
to
Actually I haven't had a drink of alcohol (with two exceptions) since
2012. :) That much alcohol would be my last!

James Warren

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Nov 30, 2021, 7:52:06 PM11/30/21
to
On 2021-11-30 4:22 PM, HRM Resident wrote:
> On 2021-11-30 3:31 p.m., James Warren wrote:
>
>       >snip<
>
>>
>> Sounds like a summer job situation. :)
>>
>
>     It was.  To help pay for my education.  Mostly pick and shovel, and
> other types of hard, physical work.  Taught me I didn't want to drop out
> of school after grade 10-11!
>
>
>>
>> My arthritis limits me more than that. Sad, when I remember 20
>> years ago I could run a half marathon. ?(
>>
>
>     That's what it did here. In 2015, I felt like I was 40.  By
> 2018-2019, everything hurt!  So we go slower. :-)

It's later than you think! :)

HRM Resident

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Nov 30, 2021, 8:33:40 PM11/30/21
to
James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> wrote:



>snip<

>>
>> Thinking about that, he hasn’t replied. Maybe he tried it!
>>
>
> Actually I haven't had a drink of alcohol (with two exceptions) since
> 2012. :) That much alcohol would be my last!
>

That’s a good thing. I learned early in my 20s that anything that
makes you as sick as a dog all day the next day can’t be good for you!

When my eldest son was born some 37 years ago, I cut out tobacco
entirely and reduced the alcohol from ~ 1/2 to 1 lite of hard stuff a week
to a dozen beers a year. I can’t remember the last time I had a drink. I
suspect not in the 21st century, but I may be wrong. I have been to 4
weddings in this century. There must have been a toast at the receptions,
but I don’t remember participating.

--
HRM Resident

axemen99

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Nov 30, 2021, 9:05:27 PM11/30/21
to
Our body is quite similar to a car. Kia body will not last, Mercedes body will last forever. We are all different. If you have enough savings, spend them for retirement, can volunteer too, otherwise your money will be given to the government. I have my bucket list to see US/Canada locations to keep busy, after the COVID.

Mike Spencer

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Dec 1, 2021, 12:41:51 AM12/1/21
to

HRM Resident <hrm...@gmail.com> writes:

> Government is different. It doesn't have to make a profit. However,
> take away the "bureaucracy," and after a short while, one finds that
> most lucrative contracts end up going to friends, relatives, etc. of
> those making the decision. Stealing tax dollars or diverting
> government money to companies with a lousy track record of
> delivering quality. Knowing the deputy minister helps get these
> contracts!
>
> To prevent this, multiple people have to review purchases and
> spending that's not trivial. Having to have those "multiple people"
> all weigh in stops the vast majority of the "theft" and "fraud" but
> slows things to an inefficient crawl in many situations. So which do
> we want? People stealing our money or spending it inefficiently?

That's what the "deep state" is. It's not a secret fraternity of
conspirators plotting the downfall of righteous leaders. It's the
accumulated friction and inertia of bureacracy, with countless
individuals attending each to h{is,er} bit of responsibility or bit of
procedure. But that's seen by authoritarian VIPs and elected
head-cases as a bunch of unelected peons telling them they can't do
whatever they fucking want. I suppose that if you've worked in a
bureaucracy for awhile, it's hard to see that.

Mike Spencer

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Dec 1, 2021, 1:15:22 AM12/1/21
to

HRM Resident <hrm...@gmail.com> writes:

> When you first "graduate" from private industry to government, the
> bureaucracy is insufferable. They can hold up a $20K project for a
> week before Fred and Mary return from vacation to sign off a
> requisition to get a $10 item! I went to Canadian Tire once and
> bought a $4.99 Robertson screwdriver out of my own money to get the
> show on the road. Someone told management, and they went crazy.
> They probably spent $500-$1000 meeting and deciding how to tell me
> never to do that again.

I worked at Mass. Eye & Ear Hospital in '65 on biochemical research.
I had permission to use a spectrophotometer in another lab but I did
it at night to avoid the attention of the alt-Preussisch chief
biochemist who was very authoritarian, was definitely *not* my boss
and was irritated that there was anything to do with biochemistry
in-house that he didn't control.

One night the machine failed. I took it apart, located a little gear
that was supposed to float freely on its shaft but was seized. I
removed it, went home and spent the next morning failing to find a tiny
gear puller in Boston, finally learned that the hospital had its own
optical machine shop full of gear for doing tiny precision work.
Machinist freed up my gear, lubricated it and I went back to the
biochem lab.

Where the head guy was in a frenzy of fear and rage after having come
to work that morning only to find his precious machine disassembled on
the bench. He was adamant that I should have informed him, he would
have called the manufacturer who would have called the local vendor
who would have removed the machine to their repair facility and
brought it back in a week or two, billing $XX to the head guy's budget
account.

While the head guy fumed, I installed the gear, put it all together
and demonstrated that it worked as expected. I probably would have
been treated harshly, save that my own boss (who thought the whole
thing was hilarious) was the fair-haired favorite protege of the
hospital director.

There's another story about a floppy disk with a virus and Peggy's
boss who was outraged that I got the infestation at the project fixed
by talking to the programmers rather than by Peggy reporting it to
her. The boss in this case was 100% ignorant of anything technical
and ghod nose what would have been done or where the info would have
gone had it gone first to her. That one was government.

Lucretia Borgia

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Dec 1, 2021, 7:03:37 AM12/1/21
to
Neither has J V-G = he drinks that awful vegetarian beer at HNOs :)
Can't say the same for myself, for years I have had two glasses of red
per evening.

James Warren

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Dec 1, 2021, 7:53:14 AM12/1/21
to
I'm not that righteous about it. I would have a drink or two on
special occasions.

HRM Resident

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Dec 1, 2021, 12:57:14 PM12/1/21
to
Mike Spencer <m...@bogus.nodomain.nowhere> wrote:
>
> HRM Resident <hrm...@gmail.com> writes:
>
>> Government is different. It doesn't have to make a profit. However,
>> take away the "bureaucracy," and after a short while, one finds that
>> most lucrative contracts end up going to friends, relatives, etc. of
>> those making the decision. Stealing tax dollars or diverting
>> government money to companies with a lousy track record of
>> delivering quality. Knowing the deputy minister helps get these
>> contracts!
>>
>> To prevent this, multiple people have to review purchases and
>> spending that's not trivial. Having to have those "multiple people"
>> all weigh in stops the vast majority of the "theft" and "fraud" but
>> slows things to an inefficient crawl in many situations. So which do
>> we want? People stealing our money or spending it inefficiently?
>
> That's what the "deep state" is. It's not a secret fraternity of
> conspirators plotting the downfall of righteous leaders. It's the
> accumulated friction and inertia of bureaucracy, with countless
> individuals attending each to h{is,er} bit of responsibility or bit of
> procedure. But that's seen by authoritarian VIPs and elected
> head-cases as a bunch of unelected peons telling them they can't do
> whatever they fucking want. I suppose that if you've worked in a
> bureaucracy for awhile, it's hard to see that.
>
>

It’s not hard to see. It’s obvious, and it took me five years or so to
realize there was nothing that I could do other than accept things as they
or seek employment elsewhere.

I had mouths to feed. Running off to Alberta for twice the money was
pretty much out of the question because I had ageing parents to look after
as well. You do what they tell you, except it’s inefficient, and keep on
going. Ineffective or not, the work always gets done. And you often get to
tinker with bleeding edge technology, etc. After 10-15 years they kind of
have you because of their pension plan. Kinda like jail! Behave and you
will get your parole eventually. There are perks as well. Some of my work
involved travel. “Free” trips to the Arctic, England, Portugal, etc.,
help.

A couple of times I was offered more to go to private industry here in
Nova Scotia. Both outfits were bankrupt in 5 years. Were I 20 again,
would I do it over? Yes, because both jobs I had were science based.
J-V-G was with a different department that looked after government
buildings, acquisitions, etc. From his posts, I came to believe he was
more on the “business” side of things. That’s not my forte, and I would
have went to Alberta had that been all that I could have found. I have no
business sense.

--
HRM Resident

HRM Resident

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Dec 1, 2021, 1:13:03 PM12/1/21
to
Mike Spencer <m...@bogus.nodomain.nowhere> wrote:
>
> HRM Resident <hrm...@gmail.com> writes:
>
>> When you first "graduate" from private industry to government, the
>> bureaucracy is insufferable. They can hold up a $20K project for a
>> week before Fred and Mary return from vacation to sign off a
>> requisition to get a $10 item! I went to Canadian Tire once and
>> bought a $4.99 Robertson screwdriver out of my own money to get the
>> show on the road. Someone told management, and they went crazy.
>> They probably spent $500-$1000 meeting and deciding how to tell me
>> never to do that again.
>
> I worked at Mass. Eye & Ear Hospital in '65 on biochemical research.
> I had permission to use a spectrophotometer in another lab, but I did
> it at night to avoid the attention of the alt-Preussisch chief
> biochemist who was very authoritarian, was definitely *not* my boss
> and was irritated that there was anything to do with biochemistry
> in-house that he didn't control.
>
> One night, the machine failed. I took it apart, located a little gear
> that was supposed to float freely on its shaft but was seized. I
> removed it, went home and spent the next morning failing to find a tiny
> gear puller in Boston, finally learned that the hospital had its own
> optical machine shop full of gear for doing tiny precision work.
> Machinist freed up my gear, lubricated it and I went back to the
> biochem lab.
>
> Where the head guy was in a frenzy of fear and rage after having come
> to work that morning only to find his precious machine disassembled on
> the bench. He was adamant that I should have informed him, he would
> have called the manufacturer who would have called the local vendor
> who would have removed the machine to their repair facility and
> brought it back in a week or two, billing $XX to the head guy's budget
> account.
>
> While the head guy fumed, I installed the gear, put it all together
> and demonstrated that it worked as expected. I probably would have
> been treated harshly, save that my own boss (who thought the whole
> thing was hilarious) was the fair-haired favorite protege of the
> hospital director.
>
> There's another story about a floppy disk with a virus and Peggy's
> boss who was outraged that I got the infestation at the project fixed
> by talking to the programmers rather than by Peggy reporting it to
> her. The boss, in this case, was 100% ignorant of anything technical
> and good nose what would have been done or where the info would have
> gone had it gone first to her. That one was government.
>

Your story is not unique! You were innovative, quick, and you got it
working A1 as soon as possible. That’s the kind of employee that makes or
breaks small to mid-sized organizations. It’s just not feasible to do that
in a behemoth like a government. They are terrified of liability, for one
thing. I tried to convince some managers to allow power users to run
Linux. It was ten times more suited to their work than Microsoft or Apple
products.

However, the response was, “We have a government-wide warranty and
support contract with Microsoft. If there’s a problem, it’s their
responsibility. If Ubuntu or Debian Linux breaks, who do we call? How do
we explain to the public that we can’t deliver for a week because we
cheaped out and used freeware?”

So it was Windows for everyone! Or the proprietor supported Sun, IBM
or HP Unix. No Linux allowed!

--
HRM Resident

HRM Resident

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Dec 1, 2021, 1:20:23 PM12/1/21
to
James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> I'm not that righteous about it. I would have a drink or two on
> special occasions.
>
>

I don’t think it was/is righteous with J-V-G. Pretty sure he posted
that he had to have open heart surgery because of what he called “poor diet
and exercise choices” early in life. We all do this! I did, anyway.

There comes a point where we have to realize that we ain’t 25 anymore!
Anyhow, some people smoke and drink like hell and live to be 90. So who
knows? Try the 151! No doubt you will depart Earth in a blaze of glory!

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Dec 1, 2021, 3:13:41 PM12/1/21
to
On 2021-12-01 2:20 PM, HRM Resident wrote:
> James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>> I'm not that righteous about it. I would have a drink or two on
>> special occasions.
>>
>>
>
> I don’t think it was/is righteous with J-V-G. Pretty sure he posted
> that he had to have open heart surgery because of what he called “poor diet
> and exercise choices” early in life. We all do this! I did, anyway.

I understand. I don't quarrel with "seeing the light at the end of the
tunnel" conversion.

>
> There comes a point where we have to realize that we ain’t 25 anymore!
> Anyhow, some people smoke and drink like hell and live to be 90. So who
> knows? Try the 151! No doubt you will depart Earth in a blaze of glory!
>

or LSD or magic mushrooms. :)

Lucretia Borgia

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Dec 1, 2021, 4:46:48 PM12/1/21
to
On Wed, 1 Dec 2021 08:53:07 -0400, James Warren
He wasn't righteous about it, I asked about it then ordered the same
as I was driving home later and I did say to him that I thought it was
ghastly - nothing like real beer - even though that isn't something I
drink often!

HRM Resident

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Dec 1, 2021, 7:45:31 PM12/1/21
to
James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> wrote:


>snip<
>
> or LSD or magic mushrooms. :)
>
>

Have fun! I am, and always have been, afraid of psychedelic drugs.
Many people I knew in the 60s and 70s were into that stuff, but I always
was afraid to try. They all did well in life, but I was a chicken.

My best friend, who died six years ago, put me off psilocybin. He used
to collect those mushrooms somewhere around cow fields. Then he made tea
out of them. One time after downing this tea, he decided to drive to a
local tavern. Said halfway there, he had to pull over for a couple of
hours. He saw the sounds come out of the radio, the highway was a runway,
and he was flying a jet that he said was melting! I said to myself, “I
ain’t never touching that crap.”

While I believe anyone can put anything into their bodies they want, I
decide what goes in this one—no psychedelic drugs for me. I am crazy
enough now. :-)

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Dec 1, 2021, 8:09:00 PM12/1/21
to
I'm chickenshit too! I don't think marshmallow skies would be pleasant. :)

My brother once did LSD and was seeing colourful things. He asked me to
sit up
with him all night while visions danced around him.

axemen99

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Dec 1, 2021, 11:27:43 PM12/1/21
to
On Wednesday, December 1, 2021 at 1:20:23 PM UTC-5, HRM Resident wrote:
> I don’t think it was/is righteous with J-V-G. Pretty sure he posted
> that he had to have open heart surgery because of what he called “poor diet
> and exercise choices” early in life. We all do this! I did, anyway.
>
> There comes a point where we have to realize that we ain’t 25 anymore!
> Anyhow, some people smoke and drink like hell and live to be 90. So who
> knows? Try the 151! No doubt you will depart Earth in a blaze of glory!
>
> --
> HRM Resident
JVG is active on FB. He looks fine these days.

Lucretia Borgia

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Dec 2, 2021, 7:38:58 AM12/2/21
to
On Wed, 1 Dec 2021 20:27:42 -0800 (PST), axemen99 <axem...@gmail.com>
wrote:
He is also active on Twitter - he was mightily put off with how the
police moved in to shove those homeless people out of their
encampment. So was I, there they were in body armour, masks, you name
it, not at all Nova Scotian IMO :(

HRM Resident

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Dec 2, 2021, 8:49:07 AM12/2/21
to
The evil twins - Twitter and Facebook. Historians will write volumes
some day in the future about how humans managed to use unregulated social
media to start WW 3!

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Dec 2, 2021, 9:43:32 AM12/2/21
to
Or prevent WW3.

Facebook and twitter are not evil in themselves. It depends on how
you use it, like Google. You get what you go looking for. If you
look for sciency stuff that's what you get. If you look for sportsy
stuff you get sportsy stuff. If you look for conspiracies, you get
conspiracies. The same for bullshit, religion or nonsense.

HRM Resident

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Dec 2, 2021, 10:47:25 AM12/2/21
to
How long do you think that “Western” countries are going to let China,
Russia, Iran, North Korea, etc., keep monkeying with their elections?

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Dec 2, 2021, 10:57:13 AM12/2/21
to
Forever. How can they be stopped. Nuke them into oblivion?

HRM Resident

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Dec 2, 2021, 11:35:06 AM12/2/21
to
James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> wrote, in part :

>snip<

>>
>> How long do you think that “Western” countries are going to let China,
>> Russia, Iran, North Korea, etc., keep monkeying with their elections?
>>
>
> Forever. How can they be stopped? Nuke them into oblivion?
>
>

(1) Nothing lasts forever.

(2) Depending on who wins a meddled election, you might be surprised. Had
Clinton won in 2016, she would not have been in Helsinki patting Putin on
the back for helping. I am not suggesting they would have nuked anyone,
but they can determine who did it and shut down the offending country’s
power grid for a week or two, for example. If that theoretical action were
taken, are you naive enough to believe the “country in the dark” wouldn’t
retaliate?

(3) How many people alive today remember the horrors of full-out war.
Nuclear or conventional, millions will die if it gets started between the
major powers. Seeing as the answer is few to none, and RWA plus
populist/nationalist governments are on the rise, might we be seeing
history repeat itself? Everyone seems on edge.

(4) They can and will be stopped by some retaliatory action that will keep
increasing in severity until they stop hacking into each other’s
infrastructure OR one of them decides to attack the other with military
action.

(5) Once it starts, it won’t be pretty or short. In August or September
1914 and 1939, Allied troops were told they would be home for Christmas.
Were they?

(6) Anything can be stopped once it becomes apparent it’s a lose-lose
situation. MAD stopped a nuclear exchange for 80 years. Given that today
a country can almost be destroyed by hacking, please cross your fingers
that someone doesn’t decide to try it. Why? Because if we turn Russia’s
or China’s lights off, rest assured we will be sitting in the dark the next
day.

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Dec 2, 2021, 11:53:08 AM12/2/21
to
Nuke them into oblivion is the endstage of the measures you describe
above. Tit=for-tat might have a deterrent effect.

HRM Resident

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Dec 2, 2021, 12:17:41 PM12/2/21
to
As I said, nothing lasts forever. Countries are not going to allow
other countries to mess with their elections indefinitely.

Will tit for tat work for the rest of our lives? A good question!

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Dec 2, 2021, 3:05:50 PM12/2/21
to
Tit-for-tat with forgiveness some of the time is the best solution
in prisoners dilemma type games. These games best descriobe
international relations. So, yes, it is our best chance.

Mike Spencer

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Dec 2, 2021, 5:51:44 PM12/2/21
to
Large corporations (not mom 'n pop enterprises that happen to be
incorporated) are evil by default because the legal construction of
corporate entities mandates that they be juridical psychopaths. Law
creates and custom enforces juridical personae that come as close as
may be to the DSM's definition of Antisocial Personality Disorder (aka
psychopath or sociopath) or, more inclusively, personae exhibiting the
so-called "dark triad" (narcissism, Machiavellianism and psychopathy).

> If you look for [xxx] stuff that's what you get.

From the other end, the practicing psychopath end, you ask, "What do
people look for? What do people keep looking at and entrain others to
look at once they've found it? Make more of that because we get
money for every look!"

That's the market rubric of porn, coke, smack & casinos. And it's the
market rubric for narratives that stimulate and excite people who are
variously stupid, ignorant, gullible, anxious, suffering from feelings
of self-righteous victimhood, persecution, inferiority or scorn. In
that context, it doesn't matter to the psychopathic entity what the
content of the narratives is or what its effect is so long as it draws
eyeballs, clicks, attentive minutes -- no more than the heroin
producer cares about the effects on society of addicts, crime to
support addiction, street corner dealers, addiction-compelled
prostitution, law enforcement and political corruption and all the rest
that a flourishing smack industry brings us.

In a perfectly idealized world of textbook economics, universally
rational people and an unassailed notion of "free will" ("...consider
a spherical cow..."), smack would just be a commodity and addiction a
voluntary rational option. But textbook economics is false starting
around page 2, "rational" is only one much under-represented component
of being and free will has been since the 17th c, and remains
ambiguous at best.

Nah, Twitter and Facebook are evil.

James Warren

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Dec 2, 2021, 7:36:33 PM12/2/21
to
I'm gonna use the old defense "I'm on Facebook and I'm not evil".

But I think you mean that the stupid need to protected from themselves
because the evil will exploit them.

Maybe so. There are problems with definitions here. What is evil? Who
needs protection? You may say it's obvious and it is in the most
extreme cases. The danger is letting the state define evil and stupid
which they can do for their own purposes, perhaps evil purposes.

I'm inclined to say that it is a losing battle to try to protect
the stupid and gullible from themselves or those who would exploit
them.

Perhaps you may have better luck trying to enforce statements of
facts to be in fact facts. Good luck with that.

What I said is still true. If you look for [xxx] you will get
[xxx] and things related to [xxx].

Used correctly they can be informative even if the yield is
small.

Mike Spencer

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Dec 3, 2021, 2:24:07 AM12/3/21
to

James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> writes:

> On 2021-12-02 6:51 PM, Mike Spencer wrote:
>
>> Nah, Twitter and Facebook are evil.
>
> I'm gonna use the old defense "I'm on Facebook and I'm not evil".

You know that doesn't address the substantive matter.

> But I think you mean that the stupid need to protected from
> themselves because the evil will exploit them.

I didn't mean that in what I wrote but why not? Police depts have a
bunco squad. There are laws agains selling snake oil to cure cancer.
There are lemon laws and insider trading laws.

But more generally, if the eventual end to which it exploits them is
the collapse of civilization into an authoritarian police state or
alternative-facts kakistocracy, yes, by all means. This looks to me
like the end state of a twitter/farcebook world.

> Maybe so. There are problems with definitions here. What is evil?

Not going to get into an abstract or philosophical definition. People
exhibiting the dark triad or, worse, the dark tetrad perpetrate and
even embody evil. When such people are influencers, they entrain
others so that behavior acceptable to a person dominated by
narcissism, Machiavellianism and psychopathy & sadism becomes the "new
normal". That's been happening in the US for years now.

> Who needs protection?

We all do. The article you posted last made the point that unless
you're part of the 0.1% with personal security, gated residence etc.
you don't want to live in an "I'm OK, fuck them if they can't get a
job" society even if you, yourself, are OK.

> You may say it's obvious and it is in the most extreme cases. The
> danger is letting the state define evil and stupid which they can do
> for their own purposes, perhaps evil purposes.

Yeah, that's a problem. SCOTUS may be about to evicerate Roe vs Wade.
But is that (and the sequellae in state legislatures) the government
making abortion evil or is that a resurgence of ignorance, fear,
loathing and malice given power via modern telecom?

> I'm inclined to say that it is a losing battle to try to protect
> the stupid and gullible from themselves or those who would exploit
> them.
>
> Perhaps you may have better luck trying to enforce statements of
> facts to be in fact facts. Good luck with that.
>
> What I said is still true. If you look for [xxx] you will get
> [xxx] and things related to [xxx].
>
> Used correctly they can be informative even if the yield is
> small.

James Warren

unread,
Dec 3, 2021, 8:44:32 AM12/3/21
to
On 2021-12-03 3:23 AM, Mike Spencer wrote:
> James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> writes:
>
>> On 2021-12-02 6:51 PM, Mike Spencer wrote:
>>
>>> Nah, Twitter and Facebook are evil.
>>
>> I'm gonna use the old defense "I'm on Facebook and I'm not evil".
>
> You know that doesn't address the substantive matter.
>
>> But I think you mean that the stupid need to protected from
>> themselves because the evil will exploit them.
>
> I didn't mean that in what I wrote but why not? Police depts have a
> bunco squad. There are laws agains selling snake oil to cure cancer.
> There are lemon laws and insider trading laws.
>
> But more generally, if the eventual end to which it exploits them is
> the collapse of civilization into an authoritarian police state or
> alternative-facts kakistocracy, yes, by all means. This looks to me
> like the end state of a twitter/farcebook world.

If like-minded people can find a way to get together to plot the
"end of the world as we know it", they will with facebook,
twitter or whatever. They cannot be stopped. I'm open to
suggestions on how to prevent this while maintaining our
freedoms and avoiding arbitrary restrictions on them.

Any ideas?

>
>> Maybe so. There are problems with definitions here. What is evil?
>
> Not going to get into an abstract or philosophical definition. People
> exhibiting the dark triad or, worse, the dark tetrad perpetrate and
> even embody evil. When such people are influencers, they entrain
> others so that behavior acceptable to a person dominated by
> narcissism, Machiavellianism and psychopathy & sadism becomes the "new
> normal". That's been happening in the US for years now.

I agree. But how are they to be defined accurately enough to
include only them. There are no objective definitions, just
clinical judgements which are open ti influence and subjectivity.
Who decides and what do you do about it.

Any ideas?

>
>> Who needs protection?
>
> We all do. The article you posted last made the point that unless
> you're part of the 0.1% with personal security, gated residence etc.
> you don't want to live in an "I'm OK, fuck them if they can't get a
> job" society even if you, yourself, are OK.

Yes but what is the solution. I've been advocating for education
in critical thinking for years. What else is there?

>
>> You may say it's obvious and it is in the most extreme cases. The
>> danger is letting the state define evil and stupid which they can do
>> for their own purposes, perhaps evil purposes.
>
> Yeah, that's a problem. SCOTUS may be about to evicerate Roe vs Wade.
> But is that (and the sequellae in state legislatures) the government
> making abortion evil or is that a resurgence of ignorance, fear,
> loathing and malice given power via modern telecom?

I think the latter. We can't turn back the clock. Ignorance, fear,
loathing and malice have always been there. They just have a louder
voice now. Our only weapons are facts and good arguments. These can
be ignored but all we can do is persist. Success is not guaranteed.

HRM Resident

unread,
Dec 3, 2021, 10:30:20 AM12/3/21
to
James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> wrote:

>snip<

>
> I think the latter. We can't turn back the clock. Ignorance, fear,
> loathing, and malice have always been there. They just have a louder
> voice now. Our only weapons are facts and good arguments. These can
> be ignored but all we can do is persist. Success is not guaranteed.
>

Of course, we can’t turn back the clock! Success, in the long term, is
guaranteed. The “solution” is simple. Wait for these unregulated social
media things to be used to cause actual harm. And they will. Because each
country tries to “regulate” this crap individually, it’s a mess now.

The international community hasn’t experienced a catastrophe caused but
their misuse yet. No poison gas was used in WW II because of the Geneva
convention(s) after WW I. There are international laws that stand the test
of war. Maybe, sooner rather than later, those with the might to do so
will reign in the Internet. Before you go berserk over freedom of speech,
remember the ad nauseam example, “Freedom of speech or not, you can’t yell
‘fire’ in a theatre for the fun of it.”

Until some group like the UN decides to form and tackle this, it will
be a problem. That said, throwing up your arms and bleating “critical
thinking is the solution to everything” incessantly is a defeatist
attitude. That’s similar to Friedman’s cult bleating, “capitalism solves
everything.” Both critical thinking and capitalism have their place, but I
worry when people state they have a simple solution to complex issues.

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

unread,
Dec 3, 2021, 11:53:29 AM12/3/21
to
Teaching critical thinking is far from simple!

Your world wide agreement on what to censor or regulate may work
but it is fraught with dangers. Totalitarian states already do
this. Does it work for them? Not really. You can't regulate
ignorance, hate and bigotry. But you can try to reduce it
with facts and arguments. It seems to fear that fear is at
the root of much of it. Tackle it there.

HRM Resident

unread,
Dec 3, 2021, 2:40:37 PM12/3/21
to
On 2021-12-03 12:53 p.m., James Warren wrote:

>snip<

>
> Teaching critical thinking is far from simple!
>
> Your world wide agreement on what to censor or regulate may work
> but it is fraught with dangers. Totalitarian states already do
> this. Does it work for them? Not really. You can't regulate
> ignorance, hate and bigotry. But you can try to reduce it
> with facts and arguments. It seems to fear that fear is at
> the root of much of it. Tackle it there.
>

A problem has to be significant and ongoing to get worldwide
co-operation. For example, even during WW II, no one used poison gas.
Why? Because they found out in 1914-1918, it caused as many "friendly"
casualties as enemy casualties.

Hacking, social media, and no regulation has allowed the Internet to
get out of hand . . . to be weaponized like every other bit of
technology humans ever invented. While I am lukewarm with optimism over
the lack of co-operation over Covid, there is a lot. It could be
better, and if these variants keep it going, you will see mandatory
vaccination and other draconian measures if necessary. It will force
worldwide co-operation. You and I lived through the elimination of
smallpox . . . there hasn't been a case since 1976 because EVERYONE
eventually hopped on the bandwagon, and it was defeated. So will Covid
if it doesn't degrade into a cold or the flu equivalent. I typed this
to demonstrate even "minor" problems like Covid getting co-operation
eventually.

100-150 years ago, most or all countries allowed civilians to have
as many guns as they wanted. Handguns too. My ancestors used dynamite
all the time to dig wells, get rocks out of hay-fields, etc. I suppose
you could have a Gatling Gun in 1910 if you wanted one. Then the
nutbars started to cause trouble with explosives and guns. A lot of
trouble. Putting the outlier (the United States) aside, now, 100-120
years later, how many countries allow civilians to walk around with
military weapons and play with high explosives? If a problem becomes
enough trouble, it gets fixed.

Social media and hacking have not reached that level yet. The USA
could stop the Russians and Chinese from messing around. It wouldn't be
pretty for Russia and China, and they would retaliate, but it would not
start WW III. The reason the US (and the rest of NATO) "look the other
way" is that they are doing precisely the same thing themselves. You
can bet your last cent there are USA/British/Canadian, etc. "worms"
buried in our adversary's critical infrastructure too. So far, that has
worked . . . a cyber form of MAD. Tit-for-tat to use your term.

However, I *think* the West has had just about enough of this.
Maybe I am wrong, but I suspect if they mess around in the mid-terms or
the 2024 big election in the US, there will be a sharp, quick and
unpleasant response. How long this "tit-for-tat" goes on is anyone's
guess, but at some point, they will sit down and hammer out a way to
regulate it. Right now, "Witch hunt" and "Fake news" tweets might be
funny to some, but when stuff like this takes too many lives, the world
will act. Like it did with poison gas, polio, smallpox and yes, guns
and explosives.

You are an impatient man, brother! You may need a joint or a hit
of LSD! :-) Far out and solid, man. It's even approaching groovy! :-)

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Dec 3, 2021, 8:11:36 PM12/3/21
to
COVID is not deadly enough to warrant worldwide mandatory vaccinations.
It will eventually become endemic like the flu.

>
>     100-150 years ago, most or all countries allowed civilians to have
> as many guns as they wanted.  Handguns too.  My ancestors used dynamite
> all the time to dig wells, get rocks out of hay-fields, etc.  I suppose
> you could have a Gatling Gun in 1910 if you wanted one.  Then the
> nutbars started to cause trouble with explosives and guns.  A lot of
> trouble.  Putting the outlier (the United States) aside, now, 100-120
> years later, how many countries allow civilians to walk around with
> military weapons and play with high explosives?  If a problem becomes
> enough trouble, it gets fixed.
>
>     Social media and hacking have not reached that level yet.  The USA
> could stop the Russians and Chinese from messing around.  It wouldn't be
> pretty for Russia and China, and they would retaliate, but it would not
> start WW III.  The reason the US (and the rest of NATO) "look the other
> way" is that they are doing precisely the same thing themselves.  You
> can bet your last cent there are USA/British/Canadian, etc. "worms"
> buried in our adversary's critical infrastructure too.  So far, that has
> worked . . . a cyber form of MAD.  Tit-for-tat to use your term.

Probably so.

>
>     However, I *think* the West has had just about enough of this.
> Maybe I am wrong, but I suspect if they mess around in the mid-terms or
> the 2024 big election in the US, there will be a sharp, quick and
> unpleasant response.

From whom? Not the fascist winners.

> How long this "tit-for-tat" goes on is anyone's
> guess, but at some point, they will sit down and hammer out a way to
> regulate it.  Right now, "Witch hunt" and "Fake news" tweets might be
> funny to some, but when stuff like this takes too many lives, the world
> will act.  Like it did with poison gas, polio, smallpox and yes, guns
> and explosives.

The world will invade the US and regulate the social media?? Not likely! :)

>
>     You are an impatient man, brother!  You may need a joint or a hit
> of LSD! :-)  Far out and solid, man.  It's even approaching groovy! :-)
>

The world has lost its groove. :)

HRM Resident

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Dec 4, 2021, 9:24:19 AM12/4/21
to
James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> wrote:

>snip<

>> Right now, "Witch hunt" and "Fake news" tweets might be
>> funny to some, but when stuff like this takes too many lives, the world
>> will act.  Like it did with poison gas, polio, smallpox and yes, guns
>> and explosives.
>
> The world will invade the US and regulate the social media?? Not likely! :)
>


(1) If Trump or one of his sycophants “win” in 2024 with the help of
foreign hackers, no they won’t do a thing. But eventually someone in some
country will monkey with the wrong election, or fuck around with the wrong
infrastructure, and the retaliatory response won’t be pretty. Countries
interfering with democracy in other countries will not be tolerated
indefinitely.

(2) I never said anyone was going to invade anyone to regulate social
media. In the 1950s, who invaded who to get an atmospheric nuclear test
ban treaty? When a problem or potential disaster is the result of
inaction, treaties often are formed.

--
HRM Resident

Lucretia Borgia

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Dec 4, 2021, 10:13:21 AM12/4/21
to
All those marches to Ban the Bomb really led to nothing much,
certainly not what we had wanted. I was really happy to see that the
Ban the Bomb group are still around in the UK.

It was different in my time, we did not smash shop windows or do
things like that and the police did not wear body armour and carry
guns, I remember one clearly coming up to us and saying "Come along
you ladies, you KNOW you can't be gathered here, so now move along"
and we did, albeit dead slowly! We wanted to make our point and
anyone trashing stores etc. would have been set upon, we definitely
did not condone that.

James Warren

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Dec 4, 2021, 11:31:42 AM12/4/21
to
On 2021-12-04 10:24 AM, HRM Resident wrote:
> James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> >snip<
>
>>> Right now, "Witch hunt" and "Fake news" tweets might be
>>> funny to some, but when stuff like this takes too many lives, the world
>>> will act.  Like it did with poison gas, polio, smallpox and yes, guns
>>> and explosives.
>>
>> The world will invade the US and regulate the social media?? Not likely! :)
>>
>
>
> (1) If Trump or one of his sycophants “win” in 2024 with the help of
> foreign hackers, no they won’t do a thing. But eventually someone in some
> country will monkey with the wrong election, or fuck around with the wrong
> infrastructure, and the retaliatory response won’t be pretty. Countries
> interfering with democracy in other countries will not be tolerated
> indefinitely.

Wishful thinking. :)

>
> (2) I never said anyone was going to invade anyone to regulate social
> media. In the 1950s, who invaded who to get an atmospheric nuclear test
> ban treaty? When a problem or potential disaster is the result of
> inaction, treaties often are formed.
>

Bombs are tangible things - easy to ban.

Thoughts and ideas are not - not so easy to ban.

HRM Resident

unread,
Dec 4, 2021, 5:19:15 PM12/4/21
to
James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On 2021-12-04 10:24 AM, HRM Resident wrote:
>> James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>>> snip<
>>
>>>> Right now, "Witch hunt" and "Fake news" tweets might be
>>>> funny to some, but when stuff like this takes too many lives, the world
>>>> will act.  Like it did with poison gas, polio, smallpox and yes, guns
>>>> and explosives.
>>>
>>> The world will invade the US and regulate the social media?? Not likely! :)
>>>
>>
>>
>> (1) If Trump or one of his sycophants “win” in 2024 with the help of
>> foreign hackers, no they won’t do a thing. But eventually someone in some
>> country will monkey with the wrong election, or fuck around with the wrong
>> infrastructure, and the retaliatory response won’t be pretty. Countries
>> interfering with democracy in other countries will not be tolerated
>> indefinitely.
>
> Wishful thinking. :)
>

Defeatist attitude. :-)

>>
>> (2) I never said anyone was going to invade anyone to regulate social
>> media. In the 1950s, who invaded who to get an atmospheric nuclear test
>> ban treaty? When a problem or potential disaster is the result of
>> inaction, treaties often are formed.
>>
>
> Bombs are tangible things - easy to ban.
>
> Thoughts and ideas are not - not so easy to ban.
>

I reiterate, defeatist attitude. Humanity somehow got to the top of
the food chain, and it wasn’t by throwing up their hands and proclaiming,
“not so easy.” :-)

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Dec 4, 2021, 5:49:15 PM12/4/21
to
So tell us how. :)

HRM Resident

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Dec 4, 2021, 6:01:00 PM12/4/21
to
When it becomes an obvious threat to freedom and safety (like nukes,
poison gas, military and police weapons or high explosives are) governments
will get together and work out a way. I don’t have the answer, but
hand-wringing, like some people claim you do, is unlikely to resolve
anything. :-) :-)

--
HRM Resident

James Warren

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Dec 4, 2021, 10:13:38 PM12/4/21
to
How coercive and restrictive of freedoms will this solition be? Will
the solution be worse than the problem.

HRM Resident

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Dec 5, 2021, 7:48:37 AM12/5/21
to
James Warren <jwwar...@gmail.com> wrote:


>snip<


>
> How coercive and restrictive of freedoms will this solition be? Will
> the solution be worse than the problem.
>

As coercive and restrictive as they need to be to keep us reasonably
safe and secure. Laws exist that prevent you from opening other people’s
mail, that prevent you from driving drunk, that prevent you from having a
kilo of C4 explosives, that prevent you from walking around Halifax with a
handgun or assault rifle, that even prevent you from building a small
thermonuclear device, and many other things that you might want to take up
as a pastime.

Is the solution to the “problems” these laws impose on a few people
worth removing all of them? Why have any laws? Try to sell that idea to
your MP and MLA. Complete lawlessness and the freedom to do anything that
pops into people's heads worldwide! I thought you said you believed in
critical thinking! :-)

--
HRM Resident
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