Tag Archives: conspiracy theory

Luke’s Change: The Death Star Was An Inside Job

DeviantArt user: WilliamofOrange (CC)

As someone who has become disillusioned by both overwrought conspiracy theory and the Star Wars universe, somehow these two tastes taste great together to me! Utilizing the Death Star was an Inside Job meme, Graham Putnam parodies the 9/11 truther film series Loose Change by exposing connections within the politically-connected, royal, and Jedi lineage of the Skywalker family. Darth Vader’s motives and opportunity are made clear in “Luke’s Change: an Inside Job

Video via Graham Putnam:

Hey, we’re just asking questions!

Then again, this may just be another bit of Death Star PR.

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Smart Guns Don’t Kill People

This article originally appeared on Disinfo.com

Technologist and New York Times columnist Nick Bilton explores the development of ‘smart guns‘ designed only to work with the owner’s grip or palmprint. These biometric devices are not entirely new, but are still unable to make it into the marketplace. Smart gun tech may have appeased the most idealogical contenders of either side of the debate on Sandy Hook and other gun massacres: they would not have prevented the killers from being able to use any of the firearms in question, but allowed the original owners to keep them without any infringement of their rights.

Nick Bilton via the NYT’s Bits Blog:

For example, the iGun, made by Mossberg Group, cannot be fired unless its owner is wearing a ring with a chip that activates the gun.

But you would be hard pressed to find this technology on many weapons sold in stores. “The gun industry has no interest in making smart-guns. There is no incentive for them,” said Robert J. Spitzer, a professor of political science at SUNY Cortland and the author of four books on gun policy. “There is also no appetite by the government to press ahead with any kind of regulation requiring smart-guns. These safety options exist today.”

But gun advocates are staunchly against these technologies, partly because so many guns are bought not in gun shops, but in private sales. “Many guns are bought and sold on the secondary market without background checks, and that kind of sale would be inhibited with fingerprinting-safety technologies in guns,” he said.

I called several major gun makers and the National Rifle Association. No one thinks a smart-gun will stop a determined killer. But I thought Smith & Wesson and Remington, for instance, would want to discuss how technology might help reduce accidental shootings, which killed 600 people and injured more than 14,000 in the United States in 2010. The gunmakers did not respond, and neither did the N.R.A.

A Wired magazine article from 2002 gives a glimpse of the N.R.A.’s thinking. “Mere mention of ‘smart-gun’ technology elicited sneers and snickers faster than a speeding bullet,” the magazine wrote. It quoted the N.R.A.’s executive vice president, Wayne LaPierre, as saying, “Tragic victims couldn’t have been saved by trigger locks or magazine bans or ‘smart-gun’ technology, or some new government commission running our firearms companies.”

TriggerSmart, an Irish company, has patented a childproof smart-gun. One feature is a “safe zone” that can be installed in schools and acts as a force field, disabling any TriggerSmart gun that enters a designated area. Robert McNamara, the company’s founder, has been trying to persuade gun makers to adopt the technology. He isn’t having much luck. “One gun manufacturer told us if we put this technology in one particular gun and some kid gets shot with another gun, then they will have to put them in all guns,” he said.

“We believe we could have helped prevent the Newtown massacre.”

You’ll notice how quickly the NRA equates reasonable proposals like smart gun technology with outright bans and government seizure. The impediments reveal the true, insidious nature of despicable groups like the NRA, who don’t care about human beings unless they have a large pocketbook. They don’t lobby for gun owners, but for large gun manufacturers; gun owners are the window dressing, support for them is incidental, tertiary, and superficial.

This is not the sole solution in a)the rampant problem with hundreds of thousands of unregistered guns, b)the irresponsibility of gun policy in this country, which can be well-regulated without violation of rights, or c)search of a problem, depending on your stance. Obviously ‘smart guns’ would not do anything about illegal guns or second sale or heirloom firearms, which account for a large percentage of sales and crime. This is the problem with most of the proposed legislation and ‘fixes’ from the left; they disproportionately affect responsible gun owners and not criminal use of guns.

Wayne LaPierre, no better than Diane Feinstein, used the tragedy as a pulpit to distract towards everything else besides his own moneyed lobby. It was the culture. It was vidyuh games (thanks, Jack Thompson). It wasHollywood. It was Jon Stewart. It was *as always* the atheists and gays. It was those damn mentally infirm. Hold! For a moment, my heart skipped a beat, would the NRA take an official and humanitarian position on our crumbling mental health care infrastructure? Would they promise millions in direly needed aid to prevent tragedies wrought by unfortunately afflicted people (and not their guns)? No, of course, the NRA’s position is that the mentally unfit should be registered, locked down, locked up, controlled, banned, pushed, filed,stamped, indexed, briefed, debriefed or numbered. So the people themselves can be infringed upon and violated, but a material possession like guns cannot? Riiiight.

They are unforgivable hypocrites at best, and monstrous profiteers at worst; they have done their part to arm the mentally illAnd in 2007, the NRA fought to allow suspected terrorists of having guns.

My eyes began to glaze over and drool formed around the zombified corners of my mouths as gun advocates praised ideas like putting more guns in schools, more armed guards in our police state children’s vicinity, arm the teachers and principals, FUCK IT, ARM THE KIDS THEMSELVES! None of this makes any goddamned sense, of course, when we look at instances of armed people (including cops) who make shootings even worse by playing hero and spraying more bullets in our combat zones public spaces, often getting themselves and others injured or killed.

And while I don’t believe that there is any NWO scheme to take the guns out of our cold dead hands, I do think that Democrats view it as an easy P.R. win. Another insincere and empty gesture, fully knowing that the final legislation will be watered down, ineffective, meaningless and probably contain a few provisions for special interests and corporations. It might even contain a payout for the NRA, if they play their cards right. Whatever bill is passed will expire or be struck down a few years later, and the whole dance can begin again. The whole hysteria, you’ll notice, is great for gun sales.

Neither LaPierre, Feinstein, nor any other mainstream pundit is proposing any combination of rational and evidence-based approaches to guns or mental health. Even Obama’s statements about making mental health care more easily accessible were lacking any resolution, detail or conviction. They are all knee-jerk reactions based on ideological bias and false, dystopic views of how the world really works.

As FactCheck.org points out, it is a complicated issue with seemingly contradictory statistics and no clear answers. There is academic disagreement and dubious causation for what is happening in America, where gun manufacturing and sales are up, but violent crime and crimes committed with guns are down. However, “non-fatal gun injuries from assaults increased last year for the third straight year“, so there are other factors. We don’t know if there are more gun owners, or more of the same people buying more guns. And still the maniacal massacres continue. Include suicides in the number of gun deaths, and the whole story changes. Gun deaths may outstrip falling rates of automobile deaths by 2015.

I’m not an advocate for any sort of ban at this point, but conflating handguns to assault rifles is like apples to oranges. Or comparing guns to fists and hammers. Or small businesses to multinational corporations. Or fracking done in the 50′s to fracking done today. Ad nauseam. It’s absurd. Guns still account for over double all other murder weapons in the US combined.

I’m sure to ruffle feathers on both sides of the aisle whenever I talk about guns, but I just don’t see the problem with treating them like automobiles. Responsible people register them, irresponsible people don’t. If you want to keep it in your garage and not use it, don’t register it and don’t take it out. If you want to take it out and not pay a hefty fine or punishment, then register it. They only get banned when they get used irresponsibly.

So guns don’t kill people. Smart guns don’t kill people. Sane and insane people use guns to kill lots of people (more people than other weapons can in a single shot), including themselves. And those in power each have vested interests in not being reasonable.

Perhaps the best coverage of the shootings in 2012 was summed up in The Onion’s headline: Fuck Everything.

Effortless Conservation for the Modern Man

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.” -Charles Darwin

After Rick Santorum’s recent attack on environmental “theology” in the face of such horrific anti-Christian acts (such as Obama’s blocking of billionaire oil profiteering via corrupted or incomplete environmental impact assessments), it behooves us to ask what it truly means, as Santorum biblically puts it, to be the “stewards of nature.”  Indeed, what it means to be a man in relation to nature, and to what degree our own conscience can handle.

With Climate Change Conspiracy Theories taking every shape from outright refusal to accept the hard science, to the denial of man’s influence, from conspiracy-mongering of the “science elite” to the strongly-worded prepared releases of big corporate bullies, it seems humans are happy with the pace of our own extinction. Make no mistake, this is not really about the little pebble orbiting in space known as Earth, or even the temporary handful of species currently threatened, this is about us.

As George Carlin explained, “there is nothing wrong with the planet. The planet is fine. The PEOPLE are fucked. Difference! Difference!”:

Indeed, there are several species which will actually benefit from global warming, from killer whales and albatross to the humble jellyfish, though that has been some debate as to the reasons for the world-threatening massive bloom of jellyfish population.

Or as Paul Gilding more recently explained in his TED Talk:

“Our economy is bigger than its host; our planet. This is not a philosophical statement, this is just science… that we’re living beyond our means.”

“The idea that we can smooth these transitions” through economic difficulties so that “9 billion people can live in 2050 a life of abundance and digital downloads,” he said, is “dangerously wrong.” The system will break down, it will stop working for us, and we’re not doing enough to prepare for that. And it’s not like we haven’t seen it coming. We’ve had 50 years of warnings from scientific analyses. And, if that weren’t enough, we’ve had economic studies showing us that it would be better for us to not to wait—that it will ultimately be even more profitably for us to act sooner—but we’re doing very, very little. Our eyes are still on the short term, whether it’s food, water, or waste.

Or perhaps as Kurt Vonnegut said, “Yes, well, I think we are terrible animals. And I think our planet’s immune system is trying to get rid of us and should.

Like languages, fire, and of course every single thing that lives, we can and will die.

Ignoring our predilection for preserving cute species selectively over others such as mosquitos and cockroaches (both of which, of course, are doing just fine), could it be that some some species (*coughdodocough*) might deserve to die? If an animal like the kakapo is evolved to embarrassing failure with one of the worst reproductive strategies in the Animal Kingdom, should we waste our resources there instead of on other planet-saving ventures? Couldn’t these Australian biologists better spend their time working out the fungal disease decimating the awesome Tasmanian Devil instead of the existentially-challenged Kakapo? Are we doomed to start wondering who and what on the sinking ship is worth saving and who cannot and should not fit in the life boats? And are we even worth saving?

Death is inevitable. Though we do seem in some particular hurry to get there.

There is an inevitability of collapse, the cyclical mass extinction of our own and many other species, swept under the rug by planetary forces. If there’s anything we can do at this point, we should try, and try we must and will. To fight against it seems futile, but our species, as the seemingly most adaptable, needs to adjust to the reality that we are simply animals, apex predators, nothing special, capable of slowing down our ridiculous pace. The same problem that faces deer who overgraze their environment of food, coral that topples under its own weight, or viruses who kill their host. Many animals clearly over-compete and exploit their ecosystem to their fullest for food, though within the wide genetic variance of life we also see species that adapt their methods, preserve their environment, even culling their numbers for long-term survival of the species. We can argue that we are better, more intelligent, more wise, more conscious, more highly adapted than all the rest, but somehow our track record and effortlessness are less than convincing.

And what good will our efforts make, in a modern world spiraling towards total breakdown? Your personal decisions won’t make much of a difference, economist Gernot Wagner argues in a provocative new book, But Will the Planet Notice? How Smart Economics Can Save the World. Instead we need to change our big picture science, tackling large-scale cultural waste issues like traffic congestion.

Technology will create GMOs with optimal nutritional value for starving nations, to replenish the soil as we till it, and attempt to better balance the unsustainable trends we’ve set over the course of hundreds of years. Lab-grown meat will become the norm, not borne of some nagging ethical concerns of animal consciousness, but the necessity of hungry mouths the world over. Future generations, just as selfish and greedy and hungry as every one before, will nonetheless find themselves painted into a tightening corner. We are in their corner now.

Our efforts may not count, but we should still make both large, sweeping policy decisions, and the small furtive steps to reduce our individual carbon footprints. I honestly don’t think that, since we’re all doomed anyway, you should sweat participating in society or having used styrofoam. We can’t all be expected to compost our own feces, or as one all-important issue demands:

To determine if a pesticide contains a neonicotinoid, look at the ingredients: Imidacloprid, acetamiprid, dinotedfuran, clothianidin, thiacloprid and thiamethoxam are all neonicotinoids.

But attempting to grind those gears that are now expediting the end is not a radical concept. If every person were to find that middle ground, accept the crushing weight of impending extinction facing us all, and make small changes accordingly, it would be better than denying it outright (though perhaps less comfortable than ignorance). Nobody is going to pat you on the back for doing the bare minimum, but at least it’s vastly better than what most Americans do, which is nothing.

But remember that if the damage is irreparably done, then we are just part of nature taking its course. No need to feel bad about our own extinction.

Video

Alex Jones to Glenn Beck; “Come On, Man!”

The blabbering smackdown continues as two pieholes gesticulate madly in the face of political darkness, buoyed (correct usage) by the nattering compliance of glass-eyed fans with dry brainpans. Each shadow-casting ember and random orb a dread conspiracy needs red-faced shouting at, and who better than contractually-obligated crazies like Alex Jones and Glenn Beck to do the job! But what happens when these nonlethal directed sound weapons sway course at each other, letting loose a hideously entertaining Doppler Effect of paranoia and schoolyard namecalling?

Who will live, who will die, or is there a happy medium?

Notes:
Alex has a very unique idea of what ‘face-to-face’ means.

buoyed, tr.v.
1. To keep afloat or aloft.
2. a. To maintain at a high level; support.
b. To hearten or inspire; uplift:

Alex also apparently uses the ‘crystal ball’ as his scientific slide rule, but clearly doesn’t need it in this instance.

By sparring seriously, Beck and Jones each lend credence to the sincere and rational (respectively) beliefs and opinions held by the other.

Alex Jones sees you, boy. He sees you.

Alex Jones to Glenn Beck: “Be On The Right-Side Of History!”

It’s a knock-down drag-out of crazy vs. crazy! Clowns to the left of me, Joker’s to the right, and I’m stuck in the middle with you.

I don’t agree with either viewpoint but perhaps 40%, and that’s only when either is at their most mellow yellow or tempered from tantrums. Certainly, however, they’re two of the most entertaining looney tunes on the air today, and I hope this develops into a truly interesting sideshow feud-fight, complete with pies and seltzer water.

P.S. Alex Jones admits he’s a ‘novice.’

Thought you could use some light entertainment

So fry up a couple of beef tacos, rest your weary head, and drift cheerily off listening to the lilting lulling Leicestershire aphorisms of David Icke, “You lend people money that doesn’t exist and then charge them interest.” Mmmm! Smell that New World Order, which is an anaerobic, Gram positive, spore-forming rod. No. No, that’s botulism. I was thinking of botulism. Aaaaand I didn’t phrase it in the form of a question.

I don’t know why he keeps talking about the Build-a-Bear Group, but it sounds damned sinister. And it sends me further down the rabbit hole in my murky investigations…

All I can safely say at this juncture is that it all has to do with the international arms trade and nuclear networks, the folly of the topmost shadowy conspirators to control global events, rogue elements who didn’t get CC’d, tentative (and wholly subsidiary) collusion with superior extraterrestrial beings, secret super-science, i.e. Collective Unconscious and the Large Hadron Supercollider, and a good clean cop in a world gone bad with something to prove. Some key players, (in addition to the Build-a-Bear Group), include but are not limited to CERN laboratories, the RAND Corporation, the Tyrell Corporation, Al-qaeda, the Taliban, resurgent Saddam Baathists, International Olympic Committee, The Federal Reserve Banks, Aum Shinrikyo and other Doomsday cults, the Tinner family, Blackwater, Finnish Army snipers, Microsoft, Dr. A. Q. Khan, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Bruce Ivins, Alexander Litvenenko, the Anunnaki, Adnan Gulshair el Shukrijumah, the FCC, the Flat Earth Society, the Church of Scientology, Anonymous (who are Legion), PETA, the Mafia, SETI, The Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation, Jim the Lizard King, Children of Thalidomide, NASA and Ron Silver, and Eckhart Tolle.

But perhaps I’ve said too much.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/main.jhtml?view=DETAILS&grid=&xml=/earth/2008/09/12/scicern212.xml

http://www.louthleader.co.uk/news/UFO-sightings-connected-to-Large.4492819.jp

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/14/washington/14arms.html?ei=5070&emc=eta1

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/25/world/25nuke.html?emc=eta1

I like turtles

DAMNED IF YOU DO DAMNED IF YOU DONT

8/29/08

Tonight we face down the future in a paper-rock-scissors match of doom! What shall be mankind’s ultimate destiny, our nation’s place in history, and the legacy of the individual in an increasingly deindividuized world? Why is it that we seemed faced by the lesser of two demonic evils in so many situations: foreign policy, daily life, morality, justice, the polls this election season, and when there isn’t anything good on over a thousand premium channels? Is the New World Order unavoidable, and if so, is it inherently good or evil? Can mortal man avert a horrific fate, and how would he go about doing it? Why does my phone keep beeping when I just charged it? Yes, we’ll pose all these marginally important philosophical quandaries and then not answer them, like most media and popular culture today.

It’s heavy shit, and requires an appropriately heavy playlist. Hence: METAL NIGHT!*

Hall of the Mountain King – Apocalyptica
The Sultan s Massacre – Buckethead
Take No Prisoners – Megadeth
Brave New World – Iron Maiden
Devil in the Business Class – Emir Kusturica & No Smoking Orchestra
Chemical Warfare – Slayer
Crusher Destroyer – Mastodon
Everything Is Not Under Control – Send More Paramedics
Damage Inc. – Metallica
Breaking The Law – Judas Priest
Rag Na Rok – GWAR
Disciples Of The Lie – Iced Earth
Demon Speeding – Rob Zombie
Requiem For Dissent – Bad Religion
Goodnight Demonslayer – Voltaire
The Devil’s Skin – Gein and the Graverobbers
Wheels of confusion – Black Sabbath

~The Stranger

*The Stranger in the Strangeland cannot guarantee the consistency of this playlist taking in such improbably but still altogether possible events as: technical difficulties, the end of space and time, signal interference, and chewy nougat center.