# Idaho Statesman Regurgitates High Precision Hate Calculations

The other day while eating lunch in my employer’s cafeteria I picked up the fish wrap version of the Idaho Statesman. My employer kindly subscribes to the Statesman and scatters copies around the office so I don’t have to spend my money on what is usually a slightly left of center, sane, and boring publication. The Statesman is constrained by the decidedly right of center leanings of Idaho but on some days they let their inner left-wing freak fly and boy did it fly when they boldly reported: Idaho named the second-most hateful state in the U.S.

I always thought we were number one!

I read the article to see who beat us in the prestigious hate rankings and would you believe Montana.

Montana?

My Spidey statistics sense started tingling. Was it my fault? In the last year I have lived in both Idaho and Montana, and being a hate group of one, I hate the sloppy use of misleading statistics, I may have skewed the rankings. Some co-workers remarked that if I only I had moved from Montana earlier Idaho would be number one.

Whenever I see overtly political opinions expressed with decimals I set my bullshit detectors on eleven and start analyzing the data, not the drivel.

Exactly how were these state hate rankings calculated? Here is how it’s done.

1. The South Poverty Law Center (SPLC) has developed a precise scientific instrument that determines if arbitrary groups of people are a hate group. Compared to the SPLC hate group meter LIGO’s detection of gravity waves is just trivial physics. In case you are wondering I am being sarcastic. There are no hate group meters! SPLC designations cannot be checked like the mass of the electron can be checked. They are merely expressing opinions about groups they don’t like. However, for the sake of calculation, let’s assume SPLC hate group counts reflect some fundamental reality.
2. State hate rankings are expressed as hate groups per million. For example, Idaho’s ranking is 7.1/million. This value is computed by the simple formula.

(one million/state population) * (SPLC hate group count)

Plugging in the SPLC values for Idaho we get:

(1000000/1695178) * 12 = 7.078902629

Which, when rounded up1 to one decimal, equals 7.1; this matches the value reported by 24/7 Wall Street: the primary source cited by the Statesman.

I put together a little spreadsheet that applies this naive calculation to the ten most hateful states and it completely replicates the 24/7 hate ranking. The recalculated values are shown below and if you really must check my calculations you can download my spreadsheet from here.

 State Population HateGroups PerMillionRatio CalcHateFactor RepHateFactor Montana 1,052,343 10 0.950260514 9.502605139 9.6 Idaho 1,695,178 12 0.589908552 7.078902629 7.1 Mississippi 2,990,113 18 0.334435521 6.019839384 6 Tennessee 6,705,339 38 0.149134891 5.667125853 5.7 Alabama 4,884,115 27 0.204745384 5.528125362 5.6 Arkansas 3,000,942 16 0.3332287 5.331659192 5.4 Kentucky 4,450,042 23 0.22471698 5.168490545 5.2 Virginia 8,492,783 39 0.117747033 4.592134286 4.6 Missouri 6,123,362 24 0.16330898 3.919415511 3.9 Indiana 6,663,280 26 0.150076239 3.901982207 3.9 reference http://worldpopulationreview.com/states/

Now, for extra credit, what is wrong with this calculation? Remember, I am assuming SPLC’s dubious and entirely subjective hate group counts are correct and I am using current state populations. So what is wrong? What renders this apparently precise analysis utterly meaningless, deceptive, and frankly so stupid that numerate adults should be embarrassed to parrot such nonsense in public.

If you haven’t spotted the problem yet ask yourself. “How big are these hate groups?”

I come from Montana. It doesn’t surprise me that Montana harbors ten “hate groups”, but what does that mean? It probably means there are a few dozen nuts running around in fatigues kicking dogs and yelling at people to keep off their property. You need to know how many people are in the “hate groups” to calculate a meaningful per capita statistic. Group hate is not a thing but individual hate is!

I suspect the 24/7 authors and the Statesman know that ratio ranking is, to use a millennial word, “problematic”, but we all know the primary purpose of such facile reports (fake news) is to provide a seemingly credible reference that can be re-tweeted, and linked, ad infinitum by innumerate partisan dolts when they’re enjoying their five-minute social media hates.

1. The SPLC is a left-wing organization so they will round-up. White supremacists and other wrong-thinkers will round down.

# I Help Fat Little Kim Pick Nuke Targets

Guam?

Guam?

Kim, you can’t be serious! I realize you live in a self-imposed hermit kingdom where questioning your fat headed notions results in being thrown to actual dogs but surely you’re aware of Baker’s Law of American Cluelessness.

No matter what the topic of conversation roughly one-third of the American public won’t have a freaking clue what you’re talking about.

I can assure you that an embarrassingly large percentage of Americans have no idea where, or what, Guam is and, even more disturbingly, even if they know it’s an island somewhere in the Pacific they may think it’s in danger of tipping over if too many people stand on one end.

Let’s suppose you lose your mind, (I’m being sarcastic Kim), and nuke Guam. If we don’t immediately destroy you can expect this from the American public.

2. Old school American commies, (yes Kim we still have them and they’re even more delusional than your commies), will look past your selecting Guam as a target, issuing orders to attack it, and them calmly murdering thousands of innocents and find some way to blame a white capitalist guy. You see Kim, as a nonwhite Asian dude, you have no moral agency. Even if you think you are making choices it’s really just a reaction to what some white capitalist guy did to you, or your bat-shit crazy dad, or some distant ancestor, at some unspecified time in the past. Nothing is ever your fault. This is good news for professional western victims but kind of tarnishes your great Asian conqueror image. For western commies, there are no Asian Genghis Khan’s.
3. Our uniformly imbecilic fake-news-ers, also known as the media, will finally have a topic worthy of 24/7 bloviating. They’ll be thrilled that an atomic emergency might result in people watching them again. Of course, they’ll quickly sabotage their transient relevance by staging talking-head-a-thons about “proportional responses” to being nuked. If a misunderstood adversary uses a forty kiloton nuke on your civilians is it a crime to retaliate with a megaton?
4. Finally, most of the American public will be deeply pissed. They’ll cheer when a submarine pops a thermonuclear cap in your fat ass.

Kim nuking Guam is a big suicidal mistake. Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy grand gestures and heroic deaths. Achilles didn’t garner eternal glory by coming home from the Trojan War and growing olives. I know you’re under pressure to live up to dear dead old dad and to dearer older deader granddad. I know you feel inadequate and will never be worthy of the aggrandizing bullshit you force feed your people. So let me help you by selecting nuke worthy American targets. Don’t misconstrue my help. If you hit any of the following we will still exterminate you and your comrades.

1. Washington D.C: I can’t think of a more nuke worthy target. I know D.C. may be a long shot for your tiny-penis-ICBMs but if you can hit D.C. please have a whack. Trump’s swamp draining hasn’t been going very well. Maybe a swamp nuking would be more effective. The downside of nuking D.C. is that many Americans would secretly cheer it on. We’ll appreciate the irradiated swamp but we’ll still nuke you in return.
2. Los Angeles, especially the Hollywood’ey bits: Americans love their vacuous entertainments and the empty-headed narcissistic preening nitwits that make them. You can’t imagine what a death-blow it would be to forego the next Marvel movie or another ManBearPig lecture. We’ll miss the Hollywood Sign and the Griffith Observatory but eagerly look forward to next years Dead Celebrity Roll at the relocated Oscars. Oh, we’ll still nuke your ass, even for Hollywood.
3. Silicon Valley: Recent Goolag’ey events have many Americans wondering if the hubris infused innovators of Silicon Valley have lost their mojo. Detonating nukes will take their powerful minds off disturbing notions of gender based intellectual differences and focus them on finding blast proof safe spaces. Great minds need real problems. Kim, about the only downside of nuking Silicon Valley, is that Facebook won’t be able to tally your “Likes.” It sucks to be radioactive rubble. Oh, and we still nuke you.
4. Portland Oregon and Seattle Washington: Oregon and Washington would be relatively sane states if these tumors were excised: just saying. Oh, we still nuke your ass.

Kim, you can’t win but with judicious target selection, you can make a difference. As a wise shoe maker once said: “Just do it!”

# I WannaCry about the Plunging Quality of Evil Geniuses

I have something to confess; I have no patience or sympathy for idiots. When imbeciles impale themselves on reality I smirk and guffaw. With such a nasty attitude it won’t surprise you to learn that I really enjoyed the recent WannaCry Ransomware cyber attack. Judging from the mewling soiled diaper press you might conclude civilization was dealt a death-blow and that idiot Trump is to blame.

What really happened?

1. The NSA “cataloged”1 a security flaw in Windows XP and didn’t inform anyone.
2. The flaw was leaked.
3. Hackers exploited the flaw to infect old Windows computers.
4. They encrypted files and tried to ransom victims using Bitcoin.

It’s stupid all the way down!

To begin, Windows XP is ancient. Microsoft spent years warning people to upgrade to more current versions of Windows. The warnings went on for years and years and years. Yet despite this relentless nagging an army of morons refused to upgrade. Now these shiftless dolts are blaming others.

“Teresa May didn’t give us enough money to upgrade our computers.”

“What’s the point of rudimentary computer security when Trump is going to nuke us?”

Most WannaCry victims are suffering self-inflicted wounds. Let’s hope some of them bleed to death.

As for the NSA, that festering hive of evil geniuses, you would think they would have learned something from the strong encryption battles and the Snowden affair but apparently not. Judging from recent history the NSA stands for NOT SECURE AGENCY. They’re leaking more than a menstruating woman without sanitary napkins. The entire notion of stockpiling software defects to use at a later date is cosmically stupid because it presumes software is static. Software is always changing: sometimes for good reasons. Your backdoor will probably close with the next compiler or OS release. Some quality assurance drone may notice your favorite backdoor and release a patch. This happens all the time, just read the notices that accompany standard updates and patches. At best stockpiling defects is a short-term tactical gimmick. Frankly, I expect more from the deep thinkers at the NSA.

It’s sad but evil hacking geniuses still depend on dumb users. The odds of obsolete, unsupported, and unpatched software being able to fend off NSA hacks is low but it rapidly approaches zero when dimwitted dolts respond to phishing attacks. How many “don’t click on unsolicited links” warnings must be issued before corporate cubicle warmers smarten up?

“But if I don’t click on this link I might miss consuming more useless crap?”

Finally, using Bitcoin for ransom purposes is unbelievably stupid.

WannaCry hackers you’re using the wrong cryptocurrency!

The Bitcoin blockchain is darn close to a perfect forensic tool. Once a transaction is recorded on the chain it can never be altered, erased, denied or fudged. You’re dropping indestructible breadcrumbs. It’s an audit trail on steroids. It’s like the idiot WannaCry hackers want to be caught!

Many feeble minds still think Bitcoin is anonymous. This was sort of true in the very early days of Bitcoin when nobody gave a shit about it and no serious money was changing hands. The world has changed. Bitcoin has been outperforming all fiat currencies for the last two years. A single coin is now worth more the \$1,700 US – more than an ounce of gold. Serious money is now changing hands in the Bitcoin universe and when serious money is present the usual financial rapists and apex predators, your local taxation authorities, descend like vultures on a carcass.

Because the blockchain is immutable and open it’s relatively easy to de-anonymize. An entire software industry has sprung up to do just this. Once you associate a person with a Bitcoin address you can easily and reliably follow the money. De-anonymizing Bitcoin has been going on for years. I just assume the entire blockchain is already de-anonymized which makes Bitcoin just about the worst possible choice for ransoms.

Despite all the amusing stupidity on display here, the WannaCry hack has inadvertently established a proper baseline test for an advanced privacy preserving cryptocurrency. A proper private and secure cryptocurrency should be a nearly perfect money laundering tool! I’m looking forward to the day when real evil geniuses, not WannaCry wannabes, stage a massive ransomware attack, collect a massive buttload of untraceable coin, and then spend it right under the noses of the word’s taxation and intelligence agencies. When this glorious day arrives we, the little wage slaves, the deplorables, the lumpen-proletariat, will finally have some financial privacy! Remember, if your money isn’t free then neither are you!

Until then I just WannaCry!

1. It’s not clear they discovered the flaw but however it was found they withheld it.

# FCC Follies and Monkey Browsing

There is much wailing on the intertubes about proposed changes to FCC Internet privacy rules. That horrible orange Russian stooge is desecrating the Lightbringer’s enlightened decrees and the usual suspects are having boringly predictable conniption fits. Apparently, our Internet privacy is now under attack and horrible things will ensue. You poor dumb fucks. You have no Internet privacy; you never did! I’m amused by Obama worshippers wetting their pants over Internet privacy; didn’t that entire Snowden thing happen while The One was pushing back the seas? Isn’t it a tad hypocritical to whine about the FCC, a very little fish, when great whites, the NSA, CIA, et cetera, are feasting on fools?

Now pay attention, I am only going to explain this once. If you are concerned about Internet privacy you have to look out for yourself. The FCC is not going to help you. Congress will not rush to your aid. The President, orange or black, will not defend your interests. Government, as it is currently constipated, only serves the donor class. Unless you are injecting large bribes into “the political system” you do not have effective representation. I realize it sucks to be a peon but all is not lost. You don’t have any Internet privacy but you are not powerless.

The proposed change in FCC rules is predicated on the assumption that your browsing history is valuable? It seems there are profit driven corporations out there that care about how many cat videos you watch and whether you swipe left or right. They presume that with enough data mining of your clicks, tweets, and pokes they can craft cruise missile adds that will fly under your bullshit radar and score direct hits on your “buy our shit buttons.” This entire shaky premise can be trivially undermined by simple cheap peon countermeasures.

There are two basic approaches: VPN and Dirty Data.

If you want to stop Verizon, CenturyLink, Charter, Comcast or some other evil mega-corp ISP from recording your browsing history start using a VPN service. There are many VPN providers available now and this FCC ruling will probably encourage the formation of even more. See, the FCC is making VPN great again!

VPN prevents the man-the-middle from being able to view your browsing history but unfortunately, all this does is transfer your browsing history from a mega-corp ISP to a mega-corp VPN. If your VPN is in the good old fuck-You-S-A it could still sell your porn rights to the highest bidder. If you go with a VPN provider choose one that’s based outside the US.

I’m a fan of VPN but if many peons start bypassing their mega-corp ISPs with VPN our ever-helpful government will probably amend the abominable DMCA act and declare the personal use of VPN an act of domestic terrorism! I know this sounds crazy but these days it’s a criminal act in the United States for farmers to fix their own damn tractors if the repairs bypass or replace embedded device software. Yes, intellectual property rights are that screwed up!

VPN is a viable countermeasure for now but Dirty Data is a countermeasure for the ages. Dirty Data works by sabotaging data. The idea is simple, cheap and extremely effective. Before data miners can extract digital gold they have to purge the garbage in their databases. For most corporations cleaning data is an ongoing struggle. It’s always time-consuming, expensive, and it always threatens the ROI of analytic projects. If there’s too much shit in the ice cream the mixture tastes more like shit than ice cream. So how do you mix browsing history shit into mega-corp ISP ice cream?

If you have lots of free time and you really, really, hate your ISP, you can strike back with monkey browsing. Monkey browsing is an updated version of that famous monkey on the typewriter. To monkey browse, visit random websites and randomly click crap on each site. With judicious keystroke timing, it will be a royal pain for your ISP to extract your real browsing history from your monkey browsing.

Of course, most of us can’t devote a few hours a day to monkey browsing but fear not; the monkey-browser-bots are coming! It wouldn’t be all that hard to automate monkey browsing. Many techniques would work. Trust me, in short order, an army of monkey-browser-bots will be delicately stirring shit into mega-corp ISP ice cream. When the signal to noise ratio exceeds mega-corp ISP ROI thresholds they’ll stop trying to filter shit out of ice cream and move to the next corporate delusion. Peon poop is powerful people!

Only cartoons and comedians are allowed, to tell the truth in our grievance seeking culture. It’s not your grandmother’s Internet anymore. Surveillance is a fact of life, and as sad as this sorry fact is cheer up! Half the idiots monitoring you are barely capable of locating their own buttholes with both hands and a flashlight. American intelligence agencies have been so wrong, so often, that it’s a good idea to always discount whatever they’re saying until there is overwhelming independent corroborating evidence. In the meanwhile, you can cheaply punk the “data” they are collecting. Remember, you can whine or undermine!

# What is Required: Hybrid Books

It’s time for another product suggestion. Last year I threw out the need for caption printing on the back of photographs. It’s an obvious thing to do but only a few vendors partly support backside caption printing. Eventually, the masses will notice this glaring deficiency, grab their pitchforks, and demand backside captions. We’re not a very smart species but we can learn; especially if we’re motivated by fear. Today’s suggestion is little more esoteric and lacks the “aha-ness” of backside captions.

The world needs a way to combine the virtues of Books and eBooks.

If you read at all I don’t need to convince you that books are nearly perfect. The near perfection of the printed book was brilliantly highlighted in Isaac Asimov’s famous 1973 essay The Ancient and the Ultimate. Asimov’s essay is not readily available on-line and that’s too damn bad because he completely nailed it. The Ancient and the Ultimate should be required reading in English classes worldwide; it’s that good!

Plain old printed books are nearly perfect but nearly perfect is not perfect! eBooks do three things better than printed books.

1. Duplication: It’s easy to copy eBooks.1
2. Portability: You can carry entire eBook libraries around on your phone.
3. Multimedia: eBooks can easily embed sound recordings and video.

Printed books reign supreme when it comes to:

1. Durability: There are printed books that are hundreds of years old that are still human-readable. Binary formats and media are infuriatingly unstable. I’ve complained about this in the past and I will continue bitching until the long-term binary storage problem is solved.
2. Privacy and Security: eBook readers, cell phones, tablets, and laptops can be hacked. Plain old printed books do not spy on you or mutate while you’re reading them. They also don’t bombard you with hard to ignore advertisements.
3. Aesthetics and Beauty: Great printed books are extremely valuable works of art. It’s going to be a long time before eBooks command such respect.

Given that eBooks have a few virtues that printed books do not the obvious question is, “Can we combine the two and form a more perfect book?” Of course, the answer is yes but, like I warned you with backside captions, don’t hold your breath!

A proper Hybrid Book, or hyBook, will look, smell, and taste like a printed book. It will have all the glorious heft of a thick well-bound tome but embedded within it’s covers will be a machine readable version of the book. Ideally, the embedded digital version would be something like an RFID capable of storing a few gigabytes of data for at least two centuries without bit rot.2 To maintain a high level of privacy and security the digital version must be completely off-line, passive, battery-free, immutable, and hashed with the hash prominently printed on a number of pages of the printed version. Such a hyBook would combine the virtues of the printed and digital worlds.

hyBooks, like their conventional printed cousins, would be durable and human-readable over long periods. This sharply contrasts with eBooks. eBooks, with their lamentable DRM policies, geographic restrictions, user monitoring, oligopolistic pricing, and built in obsolescence are essentially self-burning books. You cannot depend on eBook longevity because you don’t control them; they can be conveniently memory-holed without warning. With hyBooks you are in control.

Finally, hyBooks mitigate the most important limitation of printed works: duplication difficulty. As we move into an increasing DRM’ed and censored future with every aggrieved party screaming for limitations on free speech it will become more important to preserve, duplicate, and distribute offensive, blasphemous, pornographic, and opprobrious wrongthink! With well-distributed and hidden hyBooks functioning as highly redundant off-line backups it will be extremely difficult for authorities to suppress ideas. Whenever some twad3 forces the content of a hyBook off-line it will pop up again somewhere else. To memory-holing censors everywhere hyBooks will be like floating turds; one flush will never suffice. Is there any better recommendation than that?

1. This only applies to non-DRM’ed eBooks. DRM‘ed eBooks are broken. They should be avoided at all costs and their publishers should be tarred and feathered and stuffed head first into septic tanks.
2. Currently, (March 2017), there is no cost-effective durable and passive technology that can store a digital image of a book within its covers for two centuries.
3. Twit asshole and dolt: pejorative invention is one of my many specialties.

# On Shiny Pony and Witch Berning

This week Canada’s shiny new Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is hanging out with Obama. You can imagine my excitement: two photogenic lightweights sharing a heartwarming bromance on the public’s dime. I am at a loss to imagine a more hurl inducing scenario. I shared my feelings with a terse CBC comment.

As a dual US-Canadian citizen I must avert my eyes when confronted with such unctuous and expensive dog and pony shows. At least, we know who the dog is and who the shiny pony is! In a few short months, the toilet of history will flush on the Obama administration. For this we can thank term limits: one the best ideas in government ehh! This will cure the American Obama problem and ruin Trudeau’s play dates for years to come as I’m pretty sure neither Hillary or Trump are compatible with whatever is putting the wave in Justin’s hair.

I have safely ignored Justin Trudeau, (Shiny Pony), for decades and no harm will come from continuing this practice. Canada is, in Douglas Adam’s immortal words, “mostly harmless.” It’s one of the things I love about the country. It balances out the smug, preening, holier than thou, moral posturing that erupts from many Canadians when presented with conundrums like Trump. Batman’s nemesis the Joker said it best, “Why so serious?” Canadians take themselves more seriously than the Danes. If you’ve ever lived in Denmark you’ll understand.

Unfortunately, the United States is not mostly harmless. It matters a little bit who is elected President. It doesn’t matter nearly as much as many Americans think and we can praise the all squiggling Flying Spaghetti Monster for that. Living under a hubris-infused narcissist like Obama would be far worse if we didn’t have the luxury of ignoring him. And this brings me to Hillary, (Hildabeast), and Trump. It’s going to be difficult to ignore either one of them, and sadly None of the Above, my preferred candidate, is not on the ballot. This is a problem.

My solution, as always, revolves around who I hate the most. Animus is my animating principle. Trump is a bombastic tool, but, at least, I don’t want to hold his head under water until it stops making nagging noises. The prospect of four years of Hildabeast barking is profoundly depressing. The bitch must be stopped so I’m resorting to extreme measures. Next week I’ll cast a primary vote for that old 1960s era western hippie-commie, Bernie Sanders. Sanders has no chance of winning the presidency in November. If by some miracle, he ends up as the Democrat nominee he will be crushed by whatever crawls out of the Republican swamp.

I almost feel sorry for Bernie. Like all 1960s era western hippie-commies, he’s a weird mixture of earnest naiveté and historical ignorance. Western hippie-commies differ from their real eastern counterparts. They’ve never held power, never run anything of importance, and have a serious marketing problem!

Anyone, even remotely cognizant of 20th-century history, will find it hard to overlook the vast pile of corpses various communist and socialist regimes piled up. We’re not really sure how many tens of millions died at the hands of Stalin, Mao, Kim Il-Sung, Pol Pot and lesser thugs but it exceeds the toll exacted by the Nazi’s. This is beyond historical dispute. You can whine, attempt to change the subject, and hurl as many epithets as you want but it won’t change this nasty fact. People’s regimes are demonstrably bad for people.

Western hippie-commies like Sanders know this so they rebrand themselves as socialists. Socialists believe that if you only do communism right none of the brutal side effects will accrue. You can have somebody else’s cake and eat it too. This is naïve. Ask anyone in Venezuela about the wonders of 21st-century socialism. While you’re at it, explain how the socialism of Bernie Sanders differs from the socialism of Hugo Chavez. Spoiler alert: it doesn’t!

A primary vote for Sanders is mostly harmless. It’s like sticking a cocklebur on Pussydent Hildabeast’s hideous hide. Still it amuses me? I must take solace somewhere. Let’s Bern the Witch!

# What is Required: Print Captions on the back of Photographs

I am tired of waiting for “the market” to exploit painfully obvious opportunities so I will now provide guidance, in the form of milliblog entries, that tell our less imaginative entrepreneurs just what some of us would buy if we could.

Here’s a deep request. How about printing captions on the back of photographs?

I just went through the excruciating ordeal of ordering about one hundred prints from SmugMug. SmugMug prints meet my high standards but their online ordering software is clunky and clearly geared toward very small print runs. If you have hundreds of pictures, of varying and custom sizes, the software will punish you. The obvious steps of setting a paper type, selecting all your images, and then letting the software work out the paper size from image aspect ratio is not available. You must go image by image setting one easily derived parameter after another. I would print a lot more if it wasn’t such a frigging chore.

As annoying as SmugMug print-ordering is at least I get the prints I want with one major exception. If you check out my online photographs you’ll see I use captions like nanoblog entries. Many people have told me they really like my captions. One of my pet peeves is unlabeled photographs. I have wonderful hundred-year-old photographs of elegantly posed complete strangers because nobody left a clue on the back.

So, in addition to printing timestamps and file names on the back of photographs, include captions as well!

P.S. It takes about five years for the market to meet my obvious requirements; don’t hold your breath.