AI = Apathy & Ignorance

What got us to where we be, dear worst-reader? Now that’s a worst-question (grammar correct or not), eh. Let’s have a look, shall we.

Something everyone should see/hear? Perhaps. But can/could any of the (insert number here1) millions of the #Americant republican base, the minority rulers, don’t you know, actually comprehend this? You know, maybe the vid above or the links below? What a mute question, eh, dear worst-reader? #Nomatter. They have their own stuff to listen/watch–in order to continue the/their brainwash. Ain’t that so?

I was listening to the Ralph Nader radio hour podcast (link below) the other morning and the show’s guest blurted out something about apathy and ignorance while also talking about a book he wrote that includes some kind of mystery around a “Catfish Solution” that may or may not help #Americant get its $hit together. Keep in mind, I was listening to the podcast at around three in the morning. A few hours prior I had seen the Sascha Baron Cohen video (above) and his incredible speech calling out the likes of Zuckerberg & Co. And then–to add waste to lay–my dog, Beckett the killer pug, woke me up on account he’s having (once again) stomach problems. How do I know a pug is having stomach problems at three in the morning? Good question, dear worst-reader. So let’s move on.

Anywho. There’s so much out there in the ether that is the demise of my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant. I mean, not only is the newz all over it but it seems that so-called independent media (podcasting, YouTube, etc.) is getting on it, too. I mean, that’s kinda what Ralph Nader has been relegated to. Or? And check out Sasch Baron Cohen’s speech! My only concern is, independent media might have a pretty short life-span on account, according to the podcast below, the FCC, unlike how it used to regulate to protect what should be public airwaves (broadcasting), is now just in the hands of whimsical Neo-liberals–and how much is Cohen’s speech really gonna make all those minority ruling #Americant Republicants wake up to what they’ve done? Yeah, and we know where Neo-liberals come from and what they’ve all done so-far. Or? Cohen, on the other worst-hand, can still make a movie or three shitting on Stupid People. Or? Or?

The greed $hit$how goes on and on and on, baby.

Rant on.

-T

Links:

 


  1. According to Wiki, there are 32m members of the Republican Party and I’m worst-guessing, if you add to that maybe another 30m, you actually get a comprehensible number regarding how much stupid rules by minority in #Americant. Or maybe not. ↩︎

The Freedom To Be Stupid

As I’ve always worst-said, dear worst-reader, capitalism shouldn’t be the political system. Yet my beloved & missed #Americant has enabled exactly that.

But how has your beloved & missed #Americant made capitalism its political system, dear worst-writer?

Well, thank you for the question, dear worst-reader. And the answer is simple:

KEEP ‘EM STUPID!

Then again, perhaps my man, Chris Hedges, can word it all better. See link below to a great piece of writing. But be warned: if you stupid (an #Americant), move on.

Rant on.

-T

Link:

Pine64 Taking The Lead For Home Digital Storage Galore?

This is kind of an update to here and maybe here.

This is also kind of a battle, dear worst-reader. If you haven’t worst-guessed by now, it’s between worst-moi, Raspberry Pi and Pine64–all at the level of SBCs, baby. That is, for the moment, Pine64 is winning my non-NAS NAS competition. Or. How does one build a solid home digital storage thingy without having to buy one of them overpriced and over complicated glorified HDD enclosures, aka Synology, Drobo, etc., that suck bat balls? And so…

At the least, dear worst-reader, I’ve surpassed yet another threshold (or is it milestone?) of success-failure in my quest to avoid the NAS industry. You know, avoid paying stupid money to those over-rated, under-powered hard-drive bays that somehow have their own operating system and are only accessible via SSH where storing large amounts of old school data have become the bugs and whistles of gimme-gotcha. Oh wait. I’m getting kind of redundant. Move on.

The original worst-idear was to have a place for all my digital files but get rid of all the old hardware and thereby rely on Raspberry Pi. At the same confused time, I wanted to rid myself of the complication of GUI based NAS krapp, don’t you know. The only problem is, once you start transferring data, especially terabytes of data, the greatness of the R-Pi… bogs down real, real quick. That’s not to say I’m outta love for/with R-Pi. Currently the two (out of three) R-Pi’s I have running are clients for media–and they work great. For a while there I thought my taking a chance with Pine64 might not pay off on account I couldn’t get either the Rock64 or RockPro64 to do what I was hoping they’d do–as in, you know, work great like R-Pi. And then came the R-Pi4 with its faster data transfer speeds. Oh my. Moving on.

I knew by 2016-2017, in order for worst-moi to build a non-NAS NAS, gigabyte ethernet is the key. Lo and behold, R-Pi finally came out with worthwhile ethernet speeds but I’m still waiting for them to work out the kinks R-Pi4. Of course, I’d already bought into Pine64 and their SBC offering, naively unaware of software issues. Indeed. If only software would work on Pine64–managed by novice computer geeks. And so. The other day, after painstaking lazy-learning more and more about DietPi, I finally figured out how to set up not only the internal HDDs of my Pine64 NAS case but also an external drive bay (see pic above) that houses four of my old drives.

The result is I’m tickled to death. Not only does the Pine64 RockPro64 finally rock my world as a Plex media server but it’s also a great and simple Samba server with those four drives–add to that it’s got USB3! Now I can access all those old drives on my home network–with speed, baby. For shits & giggles, to test USB3, I copied my Music file library from the internal HDDs of the Pine64 NAS case to one of the drives in the external 4-bay case. Just under 1TB of data was copied in about 40min. That’s pretty good considering the same via R-Pi and USB2 would take almost a half a day. For the first time since fiddling with SBC as a replacement for all my old hardware (Macs, which I sold in January of 2019), I’m finally out of the world of PCs as trucks. Hardware in my digital world is now down to a few devices plus a great and so far stable cheap digital storage solution, including a great media server. Yeah, I’m tickled to death.

Since I’m a novice computer geek, I should also add that it’s taken me most of 2019, on and off, to be able to setup this system. Keep in mind, part of that time has been waiting patiently for a stable version of OMV for the RockPro64. But I’ve been shit-outta-luck, don’t you know. Even the Rock64, the RockPro64’s little SBC brother, doesn’t have what I would consider a stable version of OMV. So while I was hacking around with trying to get OMV to work on the RockPro64, in the interim I always relied on R-Pi and OMV to access all my drives. But. Again. The data transfer speeds were/are awful. Anywho.

The only stable software (system) I’ve got to work on the RockPro64 has been DietPi. Granted, I’ve only tried OMV and DietPi, although once I tried a Ubuntu but felt as though it was too much (as in: too much software). Also. Half the effort of getting DietPi to work has been relearning the CLI (command line interface). Indeed. Even after all these months, I’m still reliant on the google-machine to be able to do anything CLI. Yet I’ve avoided any graphical interface access like the plague. Again, that has something to do with SBC minimalism, I suppose, which I’ve kinda enjoyed since discovering R-Pi so many years ago. Aynwho.

Plex media server setup is a piece of cake because once installed, you access it using a web interface. I’ve been running Plex for about six months now and it’s worked without flaw. I have had issues requiring a restart of my R-Pi Plex client, though. But that’s no big deal. The real challenge came with setting up and configuring Samba shares for network access. Here I needed to access a share (a folder on a drive) with my R-Pi and Hifiberry Amp+2, which is currently my favourite audio player. The more and more I fiddled with this, the more convinced I became that OMV was probably not going to be necessary after all. I finally had hardware with fast networking capability but I could never get OMV to work properly on the Pine64 devices. I’m sure that has something to do with the software not getting out of beta, as indicated here. Back to Samba.

Even though I was able to setup one Samba share, I couldn’t figure out how to add more shares. My hat is off to DietPi for making this so simple–even though I spent countless hours trying to get the configuration code in the smb.confg file right. A break through came the other day once I figured out that all I had to do was copy and paste the [Share] code in the smb.confg file and then just add the correct [path =] and a new name. Boom, baby!

Now that I’ve got network access to my entire system with much better data transfer speeds, I’m no longer interested in the complexity of OMV. I certainly didn’t see that one coming. I really thought OMV would be the one compromise I’d have to make to my non-NAS NAS digital storage solution. You know, since OMV is pretty much NAS software. Again. Anywho.

Rant on–and network on, baby.

-T

What Is Then Is Now

Took me a while to finally get to this video, dear worst-reader. I’d heard about this debate after reading a bit about Buckley, who I was intellectually lead to by Christopher Hitchens a few and a few more years ago. I vividly recall watching Buckley on black&white television in my youth and asking my mother if he was American on account of his funny accent. In hindsight, how would my Prussian mother know who or what was American? #Nomatter. Yeah, that Buckley show accent. But that’s neither here nor there. The other day I was listening to a podcast (see link below) where a smart guy is interviewed about a book he’s recently written. The book is 500 pages and all about this debate. Go figure, eh. That, of course, especially motivated me to finally view the video (above). Thank the gods of greed for the Interwebnets, eh. Indeed, dear worst-reader. Although Baldwin has been on my reading list, he’s now moved up a notch or three. And I’ll get to him soon enough, don’t you know. Till then, I’ve since rewatched Baldwin’s portion of this debate numerous times and Buckley’s part only twice. Not only is it astonishing how the language from 50 years ago has not changed–considering the ugly racism-face that has arisen with #Trump–but you could almost place everything Buckley says, as he replies to Baldwin’s brilliance, overtop any fauxnewZ broadcast in the hear & now. Wow.

Rant on.

-T

Link:

Get With The Program, Son. Not.

permanent record.jpg

Alternate title: Pseudo-Review: Permanent Record by Edward Snowden

Get with the program. Get with the program. One more time: Get with the program, son. Countless times that was said to me growing up in my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant. It usually was said after I tried to talk with someone older than me. You know, perhaps an acquaintance’s parent or just some older guy (an older Boomer) that I had met, encountered, but also a few people that were a bit younger (GenXers). It was all about growing up, don’t you know. Asking questions about life and this and that. Trying to figure things out. Yeah. It was about questioning the system and how I was supposed to fit in that system. Bah humbug, eh.

A few example questions:
why should I join the military if the military is only about empire and I never will be (about empire)
is there no alternative to years and years of debt-ridden college for a corporate job that hangs by a whim
with decimated labour and manufacturing post Reagan, how the hell am I supposed achieve what my parents achieved, they could buy a fcuking house for 50k 

Indeed, dear worst-reader. People would always sneer and smirk and then blindly, dumbfounded, spew monotone: Get with the program, son. And there you have it. Any person since the 1950’s need know nothing else about life or the system that is dysfunctional #Americant other than: Get with the program, son. And boy did I NOT get with the program.

Like so much in #Americant, the word program, in essence, is code. It’s another way of saying there are unwritten rules and laws and boundaries and unless you can afford otherwise, you must abide by them all. That is, btw, what is taught by the entire education system, don’t you know. As far as affording otherwise… As money became America’s new God (perhaps after God was declared dead by enlightened Europe), it was only inevitable, like all finite resources, that greed become its keeper. As in: greed is money’s keeper. With me still, dear worst-reader?

Oh, the greed-shit-show. Yet more code that may or may not differentiate worst-writer from Edward Snowden. In other worst-words, where Snowden thinks he’s fighting the good-fight, worst-writer knows the futility of non-fight fight. Where Snowden thinks there is a boogeyman out to get us all, worst-writer knows that truth is just a mirror, mirror on the wall–supplied by parents. Where Snowden dreams of a city upon a hill, worst-writer and perhaps a few others know that the city is rotgut and shit on a shingle controlled by old, white greed mongers and what ever it is they do with their private parts. But, again, before I get too far off subject…

Twenty or so years my younger, but with similar geographic background, I too was reared in the suburban hell of the mid-Atlantic coast and the government, gift-horse bubble of Washington, DC. With that in worst-mind, Snowden’s book has drawn me nearer. Nearer to myself, to my past, to all-things worth forgetting. For don’t you know, dear worst-reader, Snowden has had to deal with a world of trickle down-ness, of meritless but well structured pseudo-hierarchy, a world of blindness caused by fear. Fear due to wanton and misconstrued patriarchy and the ills of really, really, stupid ugly white people that just can’t figure it out for themselves: hey, suckers, you’ve been duped. But I digress.

I mean, obviously, Snowden is a B-genius. I have to give him that. In fact, the only thing missing in his book, Permanent Record, or his story, as far as I’m worst-concerned, is a bit more tech-talk regarding what, actually, either the NSA or the CIA did with all those plans of full and total government ownership of individual privacy. Snowden has given us content but I’m still waiting for context. Wait. Switch that. Flip it. Yeah. It’s the other way ’round. Or? Ok. Snowden revealed something. I guess. Nomatter.

Snowden is a dreamer slash true believer in the fallacy that there is/could be (a) government for the people and by the people–as though, not unlike #MAGA, it is something that was ever actually possible. Ok. Maybe it was possible before it all turned to THE LAND OF FREE TO BE STUPID and the greed shit-show that is the current iteration of #Americant. I’m referring, of course, to way back when, say, when FDR was elected President for four fcuking terms. But then came that warning from Eisenhower after which the right-wing and all those stupid ugly white men and their shit-show of greed got some mojo on. That mojo was Reagan, I suppose. Yeah, the flood gates of STUPID opened in the 1980s. Or am I wrong?

At the least, I’ve always questioned Snowden’s motivation for doing what he did. I mean, what was the point? To inform people about what they should know–inherently? Or has no one been paranoid about the fact, since its invention, a telephone call could be spied upon? Snowden’s generation is most certainly not the first to grow up in the mental spiral of government conspiracy theory, which is just code for people who don’t quite, intellectually, know how to question wanton and ill-gotten authority. I question his motivation even more now considering he writes, rather abruptly, subtly, and almost stealthily on page 257 of chapter READ,WRITE, EXECUTE:

I needed a way to work with the files, search them, and discard the irrelevant and uninteresting, along with those containing legitimate secrets that I wouldn’t be giving to journalists.

I’m sorry. Did you not reveal legitimate secrets? Oh. Wait. They were powerpoint presentations…

For you see, dear worst-reader, although what Snowden revealed is kinda interesting, none of it surprised worst-moi. I worked, although not at a technical level as Snowden did, on a few tech projects with a few tech companies in my day–I even worked, to my regret, for Booz Allen’s commercial consulting business in Europe as an analyst and researcher. The one thing I will always remember is how error-prone to point of failure large scale data collection can be. I mean, come on, dear worst-reader, did any of this tech collecting stuff stop 9-11? What about the Boston bombing, where only after the fact did they know about the bombers communications via cellphones? My point is this: in a greed mongering society that is incapable of differentiating its political and social needs, and when it spends massive amounts of resources to maintain a dream-delusion, it’s no wonder that organisations like the NSA and CIA turn into a monstrous apparatus that has to somehow justify its existence (costs). Now just add a bunch of hyperbolic, paranoid #Americants to the mix all elbowing each other off a small plank barely attached to a sinking ship… Yeah, baby, the greed $hitshow.

Is Snowden just another angry white guy raised by another angry white guy who was also raised by an angry white guy? Snowden’s details about his family heritage dating back to the Revolutionary War, which was/is a great way to start the book, btw, is reason enough to think, well, there’s a lot of anger running through veins. I mean, considering what’s come of that revolutionary war, don’t you know, and how things are all about the rich eating the poor and the poor–especially the middle class poor–just eating up the likes of what a guy like #Trump tells them… OMG! How else could the ineptitude of faux-newZ permeate so much of a society hell-bent on wet t-shirts, reality TV, WWE and now, of course, #Trump, #MAGA, President Stupid!

Don’t get me wrong. I feel for Snowden. I’ve been to Moscow. Great place to visit, btw. St. Petersburg has the fresher air, though. That worst-said, I’m also first hand aware of the suburban hell that reared Snowden. How I laughed and giggled when he writes about Columbia, MD, and the travel to VA for work. I travelled from College Park, MD, to Gaithersburg, MD for a while. After that I commuted from College Park, to Columbia, MD, too. It was all part of trying to finance the lie of university studies–which ended up being an effort in $hit-futility–and eventually lead to my dropping the $hit-show greed game of #Americant for other shores. But. Again. I’m off subject.

Permanent Record is a great read–especially if you’re an ageing Marylander that jumped ship because, well, Maryland, VA, DC, the east coast, the midwest, and the gluttony of all else #Americant is worth disembarking. Other than that, I really enjoyed reading this book. Got a kick out of it, if you will. And I’m glad Snowden wrote it–even if it seems like a bit of stretch to believe that he really penned it all by himself. Still. I’m gonna recommend it. I might even gift it to a few people. For, don’t you know, dear worst-reader, even a fight of futility, skewed from the get-go, might be worth fighting for. What the heck. And before I end this worst-post.

Here are some of the notes/issues/thoughts I had and may or may not have scribbled in the margins of pages, pages, pages, while reading this book:

  • it’s important to know where someone is coming from, you know, as in their politics
  • is Snowden part of a right-wing sub-culture in #Americant that has been indoctrinated into such an extreme anti-liberal (anti-Democrat Party) sentiment from which there is no alternative political point-of-view meaning that there is only one point-of-view
  • this is the result of a pseudo bourgeois class, a delusional false American dream middle class, that has never taken a sincere look at itself for, perhaps, intellectual enlightenment, and so, this class has remained in a state of mental recess, a grey zone of ineptitude–that has children
  • protesting via espionage for citizen rights that are aligned to a document (The Constitution) that was never written for the poor or the downtrodden or even the fcuking spoiled rotten privileged middle-class… yet privacy is the motivator
  • real protestors, worthwhile protests, are/were occupy wall street, Aaron Swartz (who, thankfully, Snowden briefly mentions in chapter Love and Exile, p. 329)
  • liberals have long since proved that they can change their political direction, which is exactly what Bill Clinton did in the 90s by clamouring on to Reagan’s Neo-liberalism and even having the most success with it, aka the tech boom happened on Democrats watch but is Snowden aware of that
  • the problem with Snowden is his politics which he refuses to name but is perhaps obvious: he’s a right-winger reared by right-wingers and he’s oh-so incredibly suburban hell white and and and
  • his girlfriend refers to shooting guns with him (or as a means to ward off stress), see chapter From the diaries of Lindsey Mills
  • the ship at sea analogy: sysadmins are not ship captains, instead they are something akin to ship builders or even sailors and when they squeal they only bring down their ship–not that which made the ship (pick your poison, pick your enemy, pick your…)
  • One should never let the ship builder sail the ship, hence the delusion birthed by the lie of freedom, the lie of inalienable rights, the lie that is The Constitution that was never about we the people but instead we the privileged, we the haters of aristocracy so that we can make our own aristocracy, we the ones, like the French eventually, that should have chopped the fcuking heads of King fcuking George the 3rd and and and–instead of giving us pseudo king George the 3rd coloured like a fcuking orang-utan and is now President Stupid leader of all stupid people

Good luck suckers.

Rant on.

-T