Who needs security?

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Every once in a while (well, probably more like every day), I wonder if the people in charge know what the heck they are doing? In this case, it happens to be those who are in charge of military bases and security.

This article, Chinese caught surveilling same US military base twice in 2 weeks, caught my attention earlier this week and after reading it all I could think was, WTF? Who’s in charge of security?

Yes, its concerning the Chinese are trying to spy on our military bases and apparently doing it right under out noses.

Several things in the article stood out. The first was this:

The guard asked the men for their military IDs, which they did not have. She told Wang and Zhang to turn around and leave the grounds. Instead, they drove straight onto the property.

They drove straight onto the property. So, like, anyone can just drive through the gate unobstructed? There little to no barriers to slow them down? No tire spikes or giant posts rising out of the ground like we see in the movies to stop people from proceeding?

So what happens next? Did the guard chase after them?

The guard, who was not permitted to leave her post, radioed other security personnel with a description of the vehicle.

The guard? As in, there is only one guard at this particular post? There aren’t others there, with weapons or vehicles, as back up? What? This can’t really be how things work, can it? So she radioed other security…because there were no other security guards near by? I can’t believe an entrance to a military base is only guarded by one person. Really?

This is rich. So who actually went after these guys after they breached the under-protected gate at a military base?

After 30 minutes, Navy security forces finally located the two men.

Wait, it took 30 minutes to locate them? WHAT?? So for 30 minutes these intruders were driving around a military base, unhindered, because a single guard at a poorly designed post entrance didn’t have any back up? Seriously?

They allowed the security officers to look at their phones and their Nikon camera.

The officers found photographs taken of the property,…Officers also found video Zhang filmed with one of his devices.

Incredible! Absolutely incredible. 30 minutes of information gathering, which I am sure was sent to somewhere to someone who could use the photos for something. I am sure they weren’t just keeping those images on their devices to upload later. That wouldn’t make sense with the technology available today. So, that means they were at least partially successful in their mission. Good grief.

Nice work, whomever is in charge. Way to put safety and security protocols in place that make sense. This whole things has a Three Stooges, or Keystone Cops, feeling to it. This is how we secure a “sensitive storage site for weapons and ammunition”?

Not cool. Not cool at all.

 

 

Self important?

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I keep seeing these videos on social media and its getting rather irritating because everyone knows they shouldn’t do it, but they do it anyway. What videos am I talking about?

I keep seeing videos of people driving. They are holding their phone (you can tell because the image “floats” and you can see the dashboard) while they drive and showing you the road, road conditions, night sky, etc. There may be music in the background or they are narrating something that happened. Whatever.

In a day and age where it is illegal (at least in my state) to have a phone in your hand while driving, you would think that people would not put themselves or others in danger by holding a phone while they drive.

It leads me to believe that they believe they are more important than everyone else. “I’m going to disregard the law and safe driving habits so that I can post a video of me driving on the road. Because, after all, everyone is interested in what I am doing and they should probably know the road conditions.”

Guess what? You ain’t that important!

I don’t care that you are on an open road, in the middle of the night, with no other traffic around you. I don’t care what the road conditions are. I don’t care that you need to tell your followers something. I don’t care that you have a song you want us all to hear.

I don’t care.

Get over yourself and drive safely. Period.

Get on with it

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The news is rather tiring these days. Especially the news about this whole “impeachment” thing. Get on with it already. This whole thing isn’t all that historic, as some media outlets would have you believe. What is historic is the partisan crap the people in Congress are trying to feed Americans.

We all know this whole “impeachment” thing is just the Democratic party posturing and trying to find any way possible to discredit the president, whom they have hated from the beginning, even before he was officially a candidate but especially after he defeated the party “Golden Girl,” Clinton. So, in no surprise to anyone, the vote to “impeach” was totally split down party lines. This “urgency” they claim is just that they want it to happen before the next election, not that it has anything to do with protecting the Constitution and the dignity of the office, as they claim.

We all know the president will not be found guilty in the Senate (even if he might be, like Clinton). This too is a complete sham, but if the Democrats in the House won’t even send the “impeachment articles” to the Republican Senate then there won’t be a “trial” at all.

If the Democrats are afraid to follow the necessary steps to allow the Republicans to complete the process, the impeachment really means nothing. Not that it would mean much if he is acquitted either, for we all know there is not even a shred of legitimacy in the whole process.

Let’s have the trial. Follow the process. Complete the stupidity that both parties are continuing to perpetuate. And then let’s move on.

Do the work of the people, not the party.

 

Newspaper paywalls

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Bad Gateway…as in, “You don’t have a subscription.”

The Washington Post once was a paper that would be trusted to give you the news without commentary. Not so much these days, well to be fair, for quite a while. Commentary is a staple of its reporting, but I wanted to call attention (again) to it’s motto, “Democracy Dies in Darkness.” *Sorry, it’s a little hard to read in the screenshot above.*

The story of how the motto was adopted can be found here, if you can get past the paywall. Many believe the motto was presumably adopted in response to Trump’s assertion that the media was an enemy of the people for their inaccurate and slanted reporting. The story refutes that presumption, though some still question the truth on that too.

To some degree, the motto is correct, though journalism and the media isn’t to only keeper of democracy. No, there are lots of sources from which information can be obtained these days. What there is a lack of, is accurate and fair journalism and media. Therein lies the death of democracy.

Media and journalists who report their bias, their slant, their take on the information “to inform” the public is killing democracy. In essence, the Washington Post is killing democracy in several ways all by itself.

First, there is, of course, the slanted and liberal bias the paper produces every day. This is not a debatable conclusion. It is fact. So let’s not quibble about this detail.

I would posit the next reason the “paper” (I say it that way because it isn’t a newspaper in the true sense any longer) is helping democracy die is that it has chosen to put its online content (or most of it) behind a paywall. I understand a paywall generates revenue, but doesn’t advertising do the same thing? The problem with the paywall is that it makes it so that only those who can afford to pay for a subscription have access the “the news.”

Is that really keeping everyone informed? Is that really making sure there is equal access to information? Is it equitable for all?

Access to information and access to sound, unbiased reporting is important. Hiding behind paywalls and having more journalism that is predominantly commentary, ratherĀ  than facts (or a liberal spin on the facts), isn’t keeping democracy alive. It is actually killing it too.

Democracy certainly dies in darkness, but the darkness here is slanted journalism and a paywall.

Monkeys all

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I think it is safe to say that Congress continues to demonstrate that we, the American people, have elected a bunch of monkeys to run the country.

I am having a difficult time seeing anything else at this point. Both sides, Republicans and Democrats, continue to live up to the old Mark Twain quote, “There is no distinctly native American criminal class except Congress.”

I am just tired of it.

Nonsense, from everyone, though some seem to be more nonsensical than others.

Monkeys actually might be more civilized. I am sure there could be a serious debate on that point, but in my mind I think it’s probably true. There has to be a better option than the yahoo’s we have “running the country.”

Anyone else tired of this poo slinging behavior and really want them to get about the business of something other than party agendas and political sabotage?

No complaint here

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Not today.

It’s hard to complain about people who sacrifice their time, energies, family life, and comfort (and sometimes even their lives) to protect me and my family.

Any time, any where, there have been men and women who have joined the military and answered a call to protect freedoms of the US and other countries around the world.

In simple words, “THANK YOU.”

No words can really express that enough.

Thanks to my family members (relatives I have known and not known; those who served in the past and those currently serving now) who have sacrificed a portion of their lives in service of their country. Your efforts have not gone unappreciated.

Thank you.

Tax revolt

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Once again, in WA state, there has been a tax revolt.

People are tired of paying unnecessarily high taxes on things like car registration tabs.

We have had two initiatives in this state in the last several decades where the people have clearly said, “ENOUGH!” Twice the citizens of the state (not just one city and county) have said, “$30 – no more, no less.” This is one of the very few times that the rest of the state has told Seattle and King County what it wants versus the other way around, where the population of Seattle and King County out vote the rest of the state to dictate what happens in areas around the state.

So, the latest version passed of the car tabs issue passed on Tuesday, again.

And for what will be the second time, the government is going to sue (yes, you read that right, the government) to get their taxes back. Let that sink in. The government is going to sue to stop the will of the people, who used the democratic process and voted on it, just so they can get their funding back.

If that doesn’t smack of government abuse and overreach, I don’t know what does.

It just goes to show you, once you give the government the ability to oversee your rights, freedom, and money…

…you’ll lose all three.