Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Saudi Arabia Worldcon bid... Bwahaha!!!

After watching the Worldconners bash Sad Puppies since 2014, actual fascists make a bid to host Worldcon.

Cut from the pages of the vile bog of scum and villainy which shall not be named here:

"Anna Smith Spark, a grimdark author from London, has organized an open "letter of concern" with several dozen co-signers, including Charles Stross, about the bid to bring the Worldcon to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia in 2022, which will be voted on this week. The competition is a bid for Chicago in 2022.   Anna Smith Spark sent [ vile bog of scum and villainy] the letter, and "Also (and I will be dead in the eyes of the WSFS for this) the email they sent me washing their hands of this and having a quick pop at those involved in the anti-Puppies work as well for good measure," which is a reply received from WSFS webmaster Kevin Standlee."

The resulting screams of outrage are hilarious. As is the response from Mr. Standlee, Worldcon webmaster and puppy kicker of yore, who basically answered as if he were a lawyer.

So to be clear, the Worldcon as an organization will go so far as to change their entire voting structure and bylaws to keep out Conservatives, but a regime run by real-life fascists gets a straight up-or-down vote.

I'm going to laugh pretty hard if this bid wins.

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Another resignation: Gary Garrels because RAAAAcist!

This is no longer amazing. It still seems completely whack to me, but this is happening so much now I can only look and munch my popcorn. Another artsy Leftist in San Francisco gets hounded out of his sinecure for being insufficiently Woke(TM). Because the crocodile will eventually get around to eating you.

Until last week, Gary Garrels was senior curator of painting and sculpture at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA). He resigned his position after museum employees circulated a petition that accused him of racism and demanded his immediate ouster.

"Gary's removal from SFMOMA is non-negotiable," read the petition. "Considering his lengthy tenure at this institution, we ask just how long have his toxic white supremacist beliefs regarding race and equity directed his position curating the content of the museum?"

This accusation—that Garrels' choices as an art curator are guided by white supremacist beliefs—is a very serious one. Unsurprisingly, it does not stand up to even minimal scrutiny.

The petitioners cite few examples of anything even approaching bad behavior from Garrels. Their sole complaint is that he allegedly concluded a presentation on how to diversify the museum's holdings by saying, "don't worry, we will definitely still continue to collect white artists."

Well, that was it for him. Saying that the museum would still countenance the inclusion of work from White male artists (Not actually doing it, mind you, just saying it) is equivalent to a lynching in front of a burning cross in 2020.

Mm, boy, this is good popcorn. ~:D

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Best resignation letter ever: Bari Weiss quits the NY Times

Of all the jobs I've quit in disgust over the years, and there have been many, I've never written a letter as awesome as this. It is the Queen of all "I Quit!" letters.

But the lessons that ought to have followed the election—lessons about the importance of understanding other Americans, the necessity of resisting tribalism, and the centrality of the free exchange of ideas to a democratic society—have not been learned. Instead, a new consensus has emerged in the press, but perhaps especially at this [NY Times] paper: that truth isn't a process of collective discovery, but an orthodoxy already known to an enlightened few whose job is to inform everyone else.

Oh yas your Majesty! Testify!

It's a thing of beauty, I just had to share. ~:D

Friday, July 10, 2020

Shockwave absorption by fractal microcubes.

No really, 3D printed fractal microcubes.

Tiny, 3-D printed cubes of plastic, with intricate fractal voids built into them, have proven to be effective at dissipating shockwaves, potentially leading to new types of lightweight armor and structural materials effective against explosions and impacts.

"The goal of the work is to manipulate the wave interactions resulting from a ," said Dana Dattelbaum, a scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory and lead author on a paper to appear in the journal AIP Advances. "The for how to do so have not been well defined, certainly less so compared to mechanical deformation of additively manufactured materials. We're defining those principles, due to advanced, mesoscale manufacturing and design."

Shockwave dispersing materials that take advantage of voids have been developed in the past, but they typically involved random distributions discovered through trial and error. Others have used layers to reverberate shock and release waves. Precisely controlling the location of holes in a material allows the researchers to design, model and test structures that perform as designed, in a reproducible way.

One of the biggest problems in body armor and particularly helmets for both sports and soldiers is dissipating impacts. Older helmets concentrated on the hard unbreakable shell, which withstood impacts well but mostly transmitted the impact energy to a different part of the body, like the neck. So you don't die of a skull fracture, you die of a spinal fracture instead. Or a brain injury, that happens too.

This is an interesting approach where they're using the shape and location of the holes in the material to maximize the dissipation of shockwaves. Very cool. If they make it work, sporting protection like football helmets could improve a great deal.

1st monolithic silicon speaker announced.

A company in California has announced the first all-silicon monolithic speaker ever devised. It is a micro-electrical-mechanical system (MEMS) device made on a chip fabrication process.

The manufacturing of xMEMS' pure silicon speaker is very different to that of a conventional speaker. As the speaker is essentially just one monolithic piece manufactured via your typical lithography manufacturing process, much like how other silicon chips are designed. Due to this monolithic design aspect, the manufacturing line has significantly less complexity versus voice coil designs which have a plethora of components that need to be precision assembled – a task that is quoted to require thousands of factory workers.

Translation: it is tiny enough for ear buds, it is made on a chip fab and when ramped up it will be dirt cheap. No word on how it sounds, but would it be worse than existing earbuds? Doubtful.

Sunday, July 05, 2020

CNN admits Hydroxychloroquine works.

Well well, look at this.

A team at Henry Ford Health System in Southeast Michigan said Thursday its study of 2,541 hospitalized patients found that those given hydroxychloroquine were much less likely to die.
Dr. Marcus Zervos, division head of infectious disease for Henry Ford Health System, said 26% of those not given hydroxychloroquine died, compared to 13% of those who got the drug. The team looked back at everyone treated in the hospital system since the first patient in March.
"Overall crude mortality rates were 18.1% in the entire cohort, 13.5% in the hydroxychloroquine alone group, 20.1% among those receiving hydroxychloroquine plus azithromycin, 22.4% among the azithromycin alone group, and 26.4% for neither drug," the team wrote in a report published in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases.

The article I'm quoting is less than amused by CNN's "discovery".

May their shame be eternal.
To the hack journalists of the left who sold the lie, to the paid-off scientists who ran misleading studies, to the larger medical community that didn’t stand up for the genuine studies, to the fund-grubbing worms at the NIH, CDC, and WHO, specifically Tedros Ghebreyesus, PhD, and of course, to the biggest swindler of them all, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the ratface bastard who whored his considerable expertise to make money for his Big Pharma friends and grow his budget: may the world look upon you for what you are: scum.
Tell us how you really feel, bro. 😈

Your humble Phantom has been talking about this since March. Yes, Hydroxychloroquine works -amazingly- well on COVID-19 when taken early on. Yes, it is cheap and available. Yes, the Orange Man was correct when he said it looked promising.

This is not because I am so super smart, I hasten to add. It had to be extremely obvious for me to get the message. And it was. Extremely obvious. Patient takes drug, patent's breathing RETURNS TO NORMAL within about 5 hours. It does not get more obvious than that. Does that happen every single time? No, only more than half the time. Often it can take up to ten hours for the patient's breathing to return to normal.



And yes, all the great flurry of studies that came out "proving" that Hydroxychloroquine didn't work, was in fact dangerous and #OrangeManBad!!! were 100% bullshit and have been retracted.

I said they were bullshit when they were published, based on the abstract alone. Because the study design was bullshit. They might just as well have written [THIS IS BULLSHIT] in the abstract.

Peace be upon The Lancet and the New England Journal of Medicine, but if a retired physical therapist who's been out of school since the 1990's can read an abstract and know the study is bullshit, but you published it anyway, I have to question your commitment to science.

However I was wrong in assuming the study design was the only thing wrong, it develops that all the data was fabricated as well. Not just bullshit, but a crime.

Be it noted, CNN said nothing when the Lancet and NEJM studies were withdrawn. No one in media has said much of anything about it. They're all pulled into their shells hoping video of rioters setting random statues on fire will draw attention away from their unforgivable behavior.

People died from this, my friends. Real people who would have lived if given this cheap and available medicine are dead now. Deliberately withholding a lifesaving medicine from vulnerable patients during a pandemic, over politics, I can't think of anything lower than that.

I'm of the opinion that some people desperately need to be sent to jail for this. We cannot accept this level of sheer uncaring evil in our society. Shaming is not sufficient.

Friday, July 03, 2020

Racist Fish.

Copenhagen's Little Mermaid, 2020 style.

Offered without further comment.

Thursday, July 02, 2020

"Defund Superheros!" Time Magazine, real article.

Comic book nerds will recall that in the original Incredibles, all the superheros had to go into witness protection because the public turned against them.

Time Magazine has felt the need to pursue that notion in the Real World

We're Re-examining How We Portray Cops Onscreen. Now It's Time to Talk About Superheroes

In the past several weeks, as calls to defund the police have gone mainstream, pop culture critics and fans have been reconsidering how Hollywood heroizes cops. Legal procedurals and shoot-em-up action movies have long presented a skewed perception of the justice system in America, in which the police are almost always positioned as the good guys. These "good cop" narratives are rarely balanced out with stories of systemic racism in the criminal justice system. The "bad guys" they pursue are often people of color, their characters undeveloped beyond their criminality.
In this period of reckoning, the long-running show Cops and the widely-watched Live PD have been canceled. Actors and writers who contributed to police procedurals are criticizing their own work and donating money to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. Parents are protesting benevolent portrayals of canine cops in the children's television show Paw Patrol. And Ava DuVernay's film collective ARRAY is launching the Law Enforcement Accountability Project (LEAP) to highlight stories of police brutality and counteract a biased narrative.
But as we engage in this long overdue conversation about law enforcement, it's high time we also talk about the most popular characters in film, the ones who decide the parameters of justice and often enact them with violence: superheroes.

This is a loooong article, but the gist of the conversation is police = bad, therefore superheroes are bad and must be destroyed. So let's talk about that a little bit.

Let's start with these "protests" and the "demonstrators" currently in the news. I observe that everything was fun and games in Seattle CHAZ until the "demonstrators" vandalized the mayor's house. Guys were getting beat up, shot, killed, and nobody cared. Millions of dollars in damage to the businesses and buildings, all okay. But then some mutant (a white kid, if I remember correctly) spraypainted #BLM next to the mayor's front door on her nice wood siding, and that was it. Game over. Cops kicked all the "demonstrators" out, moved the barricades, and today the poor bastards who own all those stores are out there trying to fix everything that got broken and clean up.

That's what cops are actually for. Not to hand out speeding tickets or reduce crime. Their job is to protect the apparatus of government and put down insurrections. That's why uniformed police exist. Tickets and trouble calls are what they fill their time with between episodes of insurrection.

And let's be very clear, the only reason downtown Seattle got turned into The CHAZ by a bunch of insurrectionists in the first place is because the mayor told the cops to let them do it. A political ploy by a not-very-smart politician to use the situation to her advantage.

The same farce is being enacted in Toronto right now. Nathan Phillips Square is being "occupied" by "protesters" who have a bunch of political demands. The mayor is using the police force to PROTECT the demonstrators from the news media. In due time, when the politicians are ready to stop pretending Corona is a reason not to go do their jobs, the cops will round up all the "demonstrators" and everything will go back to normal.

It's theater.

It's a show put on by one political faction to make it look like they really care about all the things that we are supposed to care about these days. The cops are part of the theater, they are letting the fires get set and the stores get burned to the ground because they were ordered to do so. And everybody with half a brain knows it.

Example of anti-racism 2020 style. You can thank the mayor.
Oh and by the way, the cops put their knees on people's necks during arrests because they were ordered to do that too. Just so we're all clear why people do things, okay? The knee-on-the-neck thing is part of the show.

This article in Time Magazine is part of the theater. The author is Eliana Dockterman, some basic white woman who lives in New York City. Her complaint in this piece is that superheros as a concept don't forward her political narrative.

Superheroes have dominated popular culture for the last decade—they are fixtures of the highest-grossing movies and icons to more than just our children. They are beacons of inspiration: protesters dressed as Spider-Man and Batman have turned up at recent Black Lives Matter demonstrations. And yet what are superheroes except cops with capes who enact justice with their powers?

Nice try with the strawman. The defining trait of classic superheroes is that they are INCORRUPTIBLE. The police, the politicians, the courts, the Army, all these things can be bought. Captain America, he's the guy you can't buy. Superman, he's the guy that will do the right thing no matter what.

The defining nature of a superhero's use of violence is that they interrupt crimes -in progress-. Spiderman finds the super villain in the middle of trying to nuke NYC and punches him in the face to make him stop. Batman fights the Joker to stop him murdering a theater full of people.

What Dockterman wants to pretend is that this idea of incorruptibility and use of violence in pursuit of justice is Whiteness, and therefore bad. Sorry, white kids, no Captain America for you. There is no Justice, capital J, only racism and hate.

For Dockterman, The Watchmen is the best kind of superhero story, because it's all about corrupt people doing corrupt things to each other and fighting racism because that's the most terrible thing ever.

But the superhero property that most directly engages with corruption in policing is Watchmen. In Alan Moore's 1986 graphic novel, vigilantes who believe they have the right to fight and live by their own moral codes often prove themselves despicable bigots or megalomaniacs. One particular image of so-called heroes confronting a riot looks an awful lot like the recent videos we've seen of police officers shooting rubber bullets and tear gas at protesters.

All the SJWs love The Watchmen because it's the Anti-superhero superhero story. "Nobody is incorruptible, you stupid kids! EVERYBODY DOES IT!!! Get with the program! Run outside and burn something!"

All part of the theater.

I'm against it, myself. To my mind burning down stores and homes as part of a political theater, that's the kind of thing that superheroes are a reaction to. If Ms. Dockterman wants to know why superhero movies are the only thing consistently making money at the movies the last 10 years, she should go look in the mirror.