How to Ice Skate Repost

Reposting this today because it’s October first, a good date to put up stuff about skating. If your local rink isn’t open for the season yet, they will be soon. I think I’ll repost this every year in October (until I forget or get bored).

Aright, bitches, ’tis the season, so listen up.

Ice skating is awesome. When you’re going fast it is the closest a human being can get to flying. The American Psychiatric Association defines “not liking ice skating” as a mental disorder. It’s in their diagnostic manual.

I always see a lot of n00bs ice skating, which is great! Here are some tips.

(1) You will fall. Get used to it.

(2) Ice skating is not walking on ice. The physics is different.

When you walk, you push backward with one foot. (See Figure 1.) If your foot has good traction on the ground, it can’t slip back, though, so instead you are pushed forward. (Newton’s third law of motion, “Every action has an equal and opposite reaction.”)

skatefig1small
Figure 1

You cannot do this on ice skates, padawan, because you are on a blade that’s like a sixth of an inch thick. If you push your foot straight back, there is not enough area of the blade making contact with the ice to produce good traction. (See Figure 2.) Instead of being planted on the ice and thus propelling you forward, your foot will simply slide back. Then, because you’re a n00b, you’ll fall down. (Newton’s lesser-known fourth law of motion, “N00bs fall down.”)

skatefig2small
Figure 2. The thin black line is your blade’s contact with the ice.

How do you deal with this? Well, plainly you need more area of the blade making contact with the ice. Simply turning your foot somewhat sideways does it. (See Figure 3.) This gives your foot enough traction, so when you push it back, the only thing that can happen is that the rest of you goes forward.

skatefig-3small
Figure 3. (The extent to which the foot is turned here is exaggerated for clarity.)

Meanwhile you are pointing the other foot in roughly the direction you want to go, so you glide forward on that foot. (As per Newton’s fifth law, “Ice is slippery.”)

Then the feet switch roles, with the gliding foot becoming the foot you’re pushing back with, and the pushing foot becoming the gliding foot. Repeat.

Once you learn this, it really is easy and natural.

(3) On falling: One of the problems is that your instincts about righting yourself when you’re off balance are all wrong. Moves that help you regain your balance when you’re on terra firma don’t necessarily help you, to put it mildly, when you’re skating on blades on ice. You have to learn new reflexes (if learned reflexes isn’t an oxymoron). I can’t re-wire your neural wiring that handles these reflexes, so I don’t know what to tell you here, except that you have to practice.

(4) “Crossover,” logically enough, is the term for when you cross one foot over the other. You’ve seen this: It’s that thing a skater does where it seems like his feet are moving independently of the direction his body is traveling in, so it looks like he’s moonwalking or something.

Crossovers function best when you’re turning at high speed and really leaning into the turn. You do this naturally when you turn while running on ground, but when you do that your foot is planted. When you’re skating, in contrast, you continue to glide on that foot as you shift your weight into the turn, so that for a moment the foot is actually moving in a different direction from your body’s center of mass.

Crossovers are a great way to add speed with relatively little effort, because gravity is doing some of the work for you. When you change direction you lean in the direction you want to go in. So you start to fall in that direction. Before you fall very far, though, you put a foot out under yourself so you glide in that direction instead of falling.

By the way, when you take a turn with a fast series of crossovers, it actually is as fun as it looks. Hell, it’s much more fun. There’s a power and smoothness that is like nothing else. Cf. comment above, in re: “flying.”

(5) Control: As long as you’re not going too fast, turning is so easy that it’s practically subliminal. (No crossovers for the moment; I’m not talking about that level of speed.) What is actually going on, of course, is that you’re shifting your weight ever so slightly in the direction you want to go in. But it feels like you’re just thinking yourself into changing direction. Telekinesis!

(6) Efficiency: Another way you can tell n00bs, even after they’ve learned to not fall much, is by how much energy they waste. In extreme cases it looks like they’re expending half again as much energy as they need to per foot-pound of work accomplished.

If this is you, don’t worry; this takes care of itself over time. Your body’s natural reluctance to waste energy will quickly make you adjust so that your motion is economical.

(7) Stopping. Several n00bs at rinks have asked me for advice, particularly about how to stop.

The correct answer is: Stopping is for the weak and timid! Are you a wuss!? Are you!? Huh!? Good, I didn’t think so. Let’s have no more nonsense about stopping.

If you insist, though, you can just point yourself at a wall. That usually works.

All kidding aside: There are basically two ways to slow yourself down, and if you keep slowing long enough you’ll stop.

The first I call the two-feet method: Just point your skates toward each other, while keeping your legs stiff so your feet don’t actually come together. If your feet bump into each other you’ll fall, obviously. But if you hold your feet apart at that angle, the blades will scrape against the ice, slowing you. And if you keep doing it, stopping you.

You can feel and hear the scraping, at least if you’re not at a rink where they constantly blast fucking country music over the sound system at full volume, what the actual fuck, not that I’m complaining or anything, but what the fuck? Don’t they know that playing that shit voids the warranty on your speaker system? Anyway…

The second method of stopping is the much-admired “hockey stop.” That’s the one you think of when I say “how to stop,” where they turn sideways and kick up ice shavings.

Just turn sideways and dig the blade of your leading foot into the ice. You’re also using your trailing foot, of course, but more for balance than friction, at least the way I do it (YMMV). Also, you’re doing some rapid adjustment of your balance, naturally.

When you first try this you’re going to think, “I shall now attempt a hockey stop.” That’s well and good, but you learn faster if you just think, “Shit! I need to stop!” and imagine what you’d do if you really needed to stop suddenly. This makes it more instinctive and less cerebral.

(8) Sharpness matters so your blades dig in. You need this (a) for acceleration, so your pushing foot can bite into the ice, (b) to slow yourself and stop, and (c) to execute a crossover. (Probably for six other reasons that I’m not thinking of at the moment too.) When you’re doing a crossover, the gliding foot has to bite into the ice to a certain extent or the foot will just slide out from under you. This happened to me once when I was trying to take too steep an angle with my gliding foot. Foot shot backward, rest of body went, “Hello, ice!”

The blade has some thickness; it’s not a knife blade. It’s the blade’s edges that are sharp. Once I actually drew blood from my hand accidentally with the edge. But that was probably right after they’d been sharpened; normally blades aren’t that sharp.

(9) Miscellany:

(A) Little kids on the ice are cute, but DANGER DANGER DANGER!!! Partly this is because they can’t control themselves yet, and partly because even the ones who can control themselves have no social awareness whatsoever. If they see Mom over there, they will simply turn with no warning in that direction, and if you’re behind them you’re going to be doing some fancy dancing to not hit them. This leads to hilarity and occasional bruises, because of course you’re going to steer yourself into a wall or shift so that you fall, instead of plowing into a little kid.

I recently cracked my elbow into the wall of a rink because I had to dodge a little one who seemed to execute a right-angle turn right in front of me with no warning. I had to do something to avoid smashing into him and ended up saying Hi to the plexi-glass. He didn’t even realize it had happened, but I did get a sympathetic look from someone on the other side of the glass.

They can also turn quite suddenly because their centers of gravity are so low. It’s like they’re equipped with little inertialess drives.

Just remember this:

Little kids on ice = Brownian motion + inertialess drives.

(B) Use your ears as well as your eyes to help maintain awareness of other skaters in your vicinity. Thus you can avoid pulling a “little kid” and turning suddenly just when someone’s coming up behind you.

Caveat: In the corners of the rink, noise bounces around weirdly. Sometimes it sounds like someone is coming up behind you and just about to smash into you. You’re like “Gah!” but when you look around there’s no one within ten yards.

(C) Downhill skating. Sweet! But why didn’t they have this when I was 19? You kids today don’t know how good you have it, let me tell you, when I was your age I had to skate 40 miles to school, and it was uphill both ways! By God!

http://www.redbullcrashedice.com/en_INT

http://www.foxsports.com/north/story/downhill-skating-fun-to-watch-hard-to-do-011112

http://www.foxsports.com/north/story/ice-cross-downhill-competitors-hope-for-olympic-showcase-in-future-022114

(D) This is a politically incorrect blog, so an observation about the sexes. Normal people, continue to read; shrieking feminist shrikes, go somewhere else (permanently).

Still with me? OK, a fun observation:

All good skaters have both power and grace, strength and fluidity. But there is a difference between good female skaters and good male skaters. Good female skaters have power – you can’t be a good skater without it – but they have more grace compared to male skaters. And good male skaters have grace – you can’t be a good skater without that, either(*) – but they have more power compared to female skaters. Just a nice little “the world is gendered” observation to affirm normality and freak out the screaming SJWs.

If you’re like most people, i.e. psychologically normal, you understand (there was a time when no one denied this!) that the sexes are different and that the differences, in so many ways, can be a source of delight to everyone. This is just a small example of that.

* Even the most brutal hockey player, 190 pounds of muscle and missing three front teeth, who starts throwing jabs at the slightest provocation, has grace on the ice. If you don’t believe me, Youtube is your friend.

(10) Have fun!

UPDATE: DON’T TEXT OR TAKE SELFIES WHILE SKATING! FUCKING RETARDS!

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Miscellany 16: Miscellany All Night, Every Night, Baby

(1) This news story has a bad immigrant AND a good gun. Double the political incorrectness!
https://wsbt.com/news/regional/police-mom-with-gun-ends-abduction-attempt-in-west-virginia-04-02-2019-151324475

Police in West Virginia say a man was trying to abduct a child at a mall when the mother stopped him by pulling out a gun.

News outlets report 54-year-old Mohamed Fathy Hussein Zayan of Alexandria, Egypt, was arraigned Monday night in Cabell County Magistrate Court on a felony charge of attempted abduction.

(2) From “Dirk Manly” in the comments at http://voxday.blogspot.com/2019/09/creepy-joe-is-done.html#comment-form

Perhaps you have seen or heard of a book from some years back: People of the Lie… Some people will gladly lap up any lie rather than the truth.
The “there’s at least 57 genders…maybe even millions!” crowd is a perfect example.

They know it’s a lie. They know that you know it’s a lie. But they’re going to continue spouting until it their last dying breath, because nothing warms their miserable hearts more than making you angry by dint of having to listen to their lies. Doubly so if you are coerced into silence and can’t voice an objection.

And if they can coerce you into repeating the lie….or ANY OTHER of the implausibly stupid lies coming from their camp, for that matter, then that makes their cold, blacker-than-coal hearts grow 3 sizes larger… for among other things, they are also emotional vampires…. what really picks them up is seeing someone who is feeling helpless, especially if they are the cause (in any way, large or small), for that person to feel helpless. What energizes them is running you down.

TL;DR: They GET OFF on creating misery.

(3) Flashback to July 2018: Victor Davis Hanson starts to notice the concept of a holiness spiral.
https://amgreatness.com/2018/07/23/just-how-far-will-the-left-go/

Hanson notes what the left wants these days—open borders, etc. —and notes that it’s not a winnable political program.

…progressives fear that their base will not allow them to move to the center to capture the old blue-collar white working class, or the Perot, Tea-Party and Blue Dog voter. Nor can they afford to move much further leftward, given they are increasingly dependent on Obama-like identity politics candidates without an Obama-like charismatic candidate.

Democrats privately acknowledge that Obama wrecked the Democratic Party—losing Congress, the presidency, state and local offices, and now the Supreme Court. But they must praise the forces of that wreckage and seek to trump them by becoming the party of hyper-identity politics. In other words, the Democrats know what sort of agenda might bring them back into power as it did in 1992. But they feel that Clintonesque cure is worse than the disease of being in the purer political wilderness without power.

So, for now, they rant, they rave, and they stew, accepting that they cannot do what might save them and therefore they only do more of what is destroying them.

They really are stuck in a holiness spiral.

The Dems contesting for the party nomination know that, e.g., taxpayer-funded health care for illegal immigrants is lethal political poison in Middle America. But they also know that they’ll never get to the general election if they don’t win the primary battle, and to win the primary battle they have to cater to the Democratic base. And the Democratic base is now vertiginously insane.

(4) What Knuckling Under to the Left’s Rhetoric Gets You:

Ivanka Trump on Twitter, August 4, 2019:

“White supremacy, like all other forms of terrorism, is an evil that must be destroyed.”

Hard-core leftist Reza Aslan in response:

Ivanka adopted leftist rhetoric (“white supremacy”), and that’s the result.

BOWING TO THE LEFT NEVER GETS YOU ANYTHING.

GET. IT. THROUGH. YOUR. FUCKING. HEADS.

(5) The ideology doesn’t choose the person. The person chooses the ideology.

I used to think that ideas are determinative: An idea goes airborne in the intellectual environment. It latches on to someone and forces him to believe in it, unless he has a good enough critical faculty. Memetic infection, in other words. And that does happen sometimes.

But the reality is at least as much the opposite: Bad people seek out or create ideas that justify their badness. Some people are born parasites who want to grab your stuff. Thus they embrace Marxism or any other ideology whose last line is, “…therefore, you have the right to grab their stuff.” Relatively few people start with no desire to grab your stuff and are really convinced by Marxism to want to do so.

Thus refuting bullshit is a necessary condition for saving the world, since it can convince the convinceable, but not a sufficient one, because most of the enemy are not convinceable.

(6) On Civil War 2.0:

“A Theory of Power Wars,” by Herrera, Morelli, and Nunnari
https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3439471&dgcid=ejournal_htmlemail_cepr:discussion:paper:series_abstractlink

Abstract: This paper provides a theory of how war onset and war duration depend on the initial distribution of power when conflict triggers a reallocation of power but the loser is not eliminated. In the model, players take into account not only the expected consequences of war on the current distribution of resources, but also its expected consequences on the future distribution of military and political power. We highlight three main results: the key driver of war, in both the static and the dynamic game, is the mismatch between military and political power; dynamic incentives usually amplify static incentives, leading forward-looking players to be more aggressive; and a war is more likely to last for longer if political power is initially more unbalanced than military power and the politically under-represented player is militarily advantaged.

Ukraine: Biden’s Admission on Video

Biden on video in 2018, bragging about pressuring Ukraine to shut down an investigation involving his son. Biden boasts that he told the Ukrainian government,

“If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money. Well son of a bitch. He got fired!”

That’s it for that.


Media notes:

For the most part they’ve been horribly dishonest, of course. Yet surprisingly, a lot of the usual suspects are letting the truth about Biden’s quote slip out.

Even the Washington Post has run this story, complete with the damning quote. Wow.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/09/24/democrats-investigation-might-do-more-hurt-biden-than-trump/

So did The Atlantic. Of course they surround Biden’s quote with “the real villain here is Trump” bullshit, but still!
https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/09/biden-trump-corruption/598705/

Biden told the story himself at a Council on Foreign Relations event in 2018:

“I said, nah, I’m not going to—or, we’re not going to give you the billion dollars. They said, you have no authority. You’re not the president. The president said—I said, call him. I said, I’m telling you, you’re not getting the billion dollars. I said, you’re not getting the billion. I’m going to be leaving here in, I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said: I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money. Well, son of a bitch. He got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid at the time.”

To summarize, Biden threatened to withhold aid if the prosecutor wasn’t fired, and he was. Importantly, Biden was not freelancing, but was acting as a representative of President Barack Obama.

Mother Jones provides the Biden quote, though again, of course surrounded by “the real villain here is Trump” agitprop:

The Hunter Biden Timeline

Joe Biden later told the story of Shokin’s firing like this: “I looked at them and said: ‘I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money.’ Well, son of a bitch. He got fired.

The extended version of the video, almost an hour, is at RealClearPolitics.
https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2019/09/27/flashback_2018_joe_biden_brags_at_cfr_meeting_about_withholding_aid_to_ukraine_to_force_firing_of_prosecutor.html?src=ilaw
Biden’s relevant statements start between the 52 and 53 minute points (the link defaults the video to a minute or so before the good stuff begins). Biden boasts that while in Ukraine,

I was supposed to announce that there was another billion-dollar loan guarantee. And I had gotten a commitment from Poroshenko and from Yatsenyuk that they would take action against the state prosecutor. And they didn’t.

I said, I’m telling you, you’re not getting the billion dollars. I said, you’re not getting the billion. I’m going to be leaving here in, I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said: I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money. Well, son of a bitch. (Laughter.) He got fired.

I usually avoid the 4D chess thing, but in this case I think that’s what happened. Trump knew about this video before he spoke to the Ukranian President, of course. He was practically daring the Dems to open up this can of worms. And they did.

Leftists, firing a laser at a mirror: “Oww! Fucking Trump!”

Reforms for After the Civil War

Presuming we win, we’ll need to re-build and re-configure everything.

A preliminary note: There are silly people in the NRx part of the right who think that democracy was a mistake and that monarchy would be lots better. Really? Would you want Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton as monarch? What? Monarchy doesn’t look so awesome all of a sudden? No shit! People who think that monarchy would be better are ignoring the realities of monarchy and looking at it through rose-tinted lenses of wishful thinking. I once walked through a hall of torture implements from a medieval torture chamber at a Renaissance Faire or some event like that. It was blood-chilling. That’s how kings maintained political control back then. Furthermore, if people then were freer in some ways, it was only because modern surveillance technology didn’t exist. We can’t just wing it when we’re thinking about comparative political systems since we have to live with the consequences. We can’t afford to get this wrong.

So all the following ideas are in the context of democracy.

1. Obviously we are going to have to eliminate lifetime tenure for all judges, and make them elected officials, duh.

2. We also need the death penalty for electoral fraud.

3. Here’s one that’s already on the books; it only (“only,” heh) needs to be enforced:

Any attempt to pass or enforce an unconstitutional law — especially any law that violates the first ten amendments to the Constitution, commonly known as the Bill of Rights — is a crime punishable by ten years in prison and a ten thousand dollar fine for each offense (Title 18 U.S.C, Sections 241 and 242).

—From The Libertarian Enterprise 8/15/1999.

Here are some other ideas that have been implemented at one time or another in various places.

4. From Brothers Judd Blog, 1/9/03:

Folks often ask why it is that New Hampshire has remained, almost uniquely, devoted to the founding principles of the nation, with limited government, low taxes, and the like… the structure of our state government–which includes the weakest governorship in America; one of the largest legislative houses in the world; and an executive council, left over from colonial days, that wields enormous power over the governor. All of these checks and balances are designed to make it difficult for state government to do much of anything without a very broad consensus, and they generally succeed.

5. We should also limit the speed at which totalitarian crap can accrete:

Annual versus Biennial Legislative Sessions

In the early 1960s, only 19 state legislatures met annually. The remaining 31 held biennial regular sessions… By the mid-1970s, the number of states meeting annually grew tremendously—up from 19 to 41. However, several of these states used a “flexible” session format in which the total days of session time was divided between two years… Today, 46 state legislatures meet annually. The remaining four states—Montana, Nevada, North Dakota and Texas—hold session every other year.

6. Term limits all around! We have this for the Presidency and it has worked well. The main argument against term limits is “The vote itself constitutes a term limit already.” But without term limits, the vote is simply a choice between career politician 1 and career politician 2. A major argument for term limits is that it would change the kind of people who run for office in the first place. With term limits, being a career politician would be impossible, so the choice facing voters would be a choice between two people who aren’t career politicos.

Would that be better? I don’t know, but it could hardly be worse. And note that our two best Presidents of the last half-century, Reagan and Trump, are/were not career politicians.

There’s another argument: A study years ago (by The Cato Institute, IIRC) showed that the longer our elected reps stay in Washington, the more pro-government they become, which is really not surprising. They lose touch with their constituents; they lose touch with the fact that most of the country is private citizens and the private sector, not government; they begin to internalize the reigning meta-context in Washington, the meta-context in which what the government does is of primary importance and what private citizens and the private sector do is of secondary importance; in short they absorb the generalized non-partisan ideology of power.

Detail to be settled: The more terms a representative can serve, the higher the proportion of serving reps at any time who can serve more terms and therefore have incentive to be responsive to voters’ wishes. (Assuming terms are appropriately staggered, as in the US Senate.) I’m not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing; it’s just something to think about.

For example, suppose each Senator can serve only two terms. With appropriate staggering, and under other reasonable assumptions, about half the Senate at any moment will be eligible for another term. If Senators are allowed 5 terms, then under the same assumptions about 4/5 of the Senate at any moment will be eligible for another term. The standard notion is that you’d want them to be eligible for another term, and so responsive to voters. But this standard notion misses that the longer the reps are in the legislature, the more they absorb the ideology of power.

Maybe we should end-run around this entire problem by using…

7. Political sortition.

In governance, sortition (also known as allotment or demarchy) selects officers as a random sample from a larger pool of candidates.

In ancient Athenian democracy, sortition was the traditional and primary method for appointing political officials and its use was regarded as a principal characteristic of democracy.

Sortition is commonly used to select prospective jurors in common law-based legal systems and is sometimes used today in forming citizen groups with political advisory power (citizens’ juries or citizens’ assemblies).

More on Athens:

The reason why ancient Athens is an interesting society for anarchists to study is that the citizens really did have a lot of power and it didn’t all depend on being wealthy. For example, the main officers for the city were chosen strictly by a lottery and they served a term of one year. Laws, foreign policy and other legislative matters were settled by the direct vote of an assembly, and if you were a citizen you could go and vote in the assembly if you wanted. Ordinary citizens had a lot of responsibilities and a lot of power.

…However, Aristotle was pretty familiar with the city-state system in Greece at that time and he figured you couldn’t get that model to work very well for anything above 30,000 citizens. That is a lot smaller than the cities or countries where most Americans or Europeans live today.

Of course, the very first thing the left will do is try to subvert the random process used, so as with electoral fraud, subverting the random process would have to be a capital crime.

8. Making things more complicated might just make subverting the process too difficult and risky to be practical. Note the procedure used for more than half a millennium to select the Doge of Venice.

New regulations for the elections of the doge introduced in 1268 remained in force until the end of the republic in 1797. Their object was to minimize as far as possible the influence of individual great families, and this was effected by a complex elective machinery. Thirty members of the Great Council, chosen by lot, were reduced by lot to nine; the nine chose forty and the forty were reduced by lot to twelve, who chose twenty-five. The twenty-five were reduced by lot to nine and the nine elected forty-five. Then the forty-five were once more reduced by lot to eleven, and the eleven finally chose the forty-one who actually elected the doge.

A major problem with government in the U.S., and the Founding Fathers’ worst oversight in writing the Constitution, is that there is no punishment for government agents who violate the Constitution. Venice back in the day had a hard-core solution to that problem:

9. Venetian Gallows. This is a gallows that stands outside the major residence of the head of state; it’s where he gets hung if he violates the highest law of the land (in our case, the Constitution) or if he signs off on a law violating it. This gallows is not used for normal executions; it’s reserved especially for our head of state—and he knows it. It’s from an account of travels around Venice by Thomas Coryat, an Elizabethan Englishman:

Near to this stone is another memorable thing to be observed. A marvailous faire paire of gallowes made of alabaster, the pillars being wrought with many curious borders and workes, which served for no other purpose but to hang the Duke whensoever he shall happen to commit any treason against the State. And for that cause it is erected before the very gate of his Palace to put him in minde to be faithfull and true to his country, if not, he seeth the place of punishment at hand.

NB: This reform only makes sense if judges are elected officials. If the Supreme Court consisted of Presidential appointees approved by the Senate, as now, then the President would have incentive to appoint indulgent justices to the Supreme Court, so that he’d never be convicted of such treason. Another possibility: The people who decide on the constitutionality of federal law in such cases must be a jury selected randomly from the entire adult population.

Stop Talking About the Anthropic Principle, Idiots

There’s a thread at Slate Star Codex about the Fermi Paradox and the Great Filter:

Don’t Fear The Filter

In the comments, the “anthropic principle” comes up several times. The notion is well summaraized by the Infogalactic article’s second sentence: “Some proponents of the anthropic principle reason that it explains why the universe has the age and the fundamental physical constants necessary to accommodate conscious life.” I’m getting really tired of this as an “explanation” of anything or an “answer” to any question. It’s a testament to the stupidity of so many people who consider themselves “wonks” or whatever. Very plainly, people:

Say you have an enemy who is an expert marksman. One day he shoots at you and misses. You might be interested in why he missed. Saying, “If he hadn’t missed I wouldn’t be here to ask the question” IS NOT A FUCKING ANSWER TO THE QUESTION! One wants to know WHY he missed. Was he on drugs? Was he sick? Nervous? Just bad luck, e.g. he was he distracted at the wrong instant? That is, this is about cause and effect. The effect was him missing. We want to know what caused that effect. Your being alive to ask the question is not the cause. It can’t be, since it’s happening after the event it’s purported to explain, fucking duh! So unless you claim to have a time machine, STOP CLAIMING THIS IS AN ANSWER TO THE GODDAM QUESTION!

Robert Heinlein once said that a touchstone for how intellectually serious a person is, is what they think about astrology (he wrote that in the 1970s, back when astrology was a fad). I’m about ready to use mentioning the anthropic principle in the same way. If you mention it, unless you’re being ironic, YOU ARE AN IDIOT. YES, LITERALLY, AN ACTUAL IDIOT.

Suppose your kid asks you, “Hey Dad, how did you and Mom meet?” and you respond, “Well, if we hadn’t met, you wouldn’t be here to ask the question.” Seriously? Anyone who says with a straight face that this is a satisfactory answer – or any kind of answer at all – should be forced to wear underwear made out of steel wool and given a nuclear wedgie.

Cut it out, morons.

Miscellany 15: Oh wow. I’m seeing, like, candy flavored, euphonious chords of Miscellany, man.

(1) Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar are barred from visiting Israel due to anti-semitic remarks. This is good news, in light of Milo being barred from Australia and various conservatives like Lauren Southern being barred from the UK. It shows that this sort of thing can go both ways.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/08/15/donald-trump-tweets-then-ilhan-omar-rashida-tlaib-barred-israel/2021918001/

Later, Israel backed down like a bunch of pathetic wimps on Tlaib— when have they ever displayed such wussiness before?— but Tlaib said she wasn’t going to go anyway. And they held firm on Omar.

(2) AI-generated pickup lines, baby!
https://aiweirdness.com/post/159302925452/the-neural-network-generated-pickup-lines-that-are

A selection:

• Hey baby, I’m swirked to gave ever to say it for drive.
• You must be a tringle? Cause you’re the only thing here.
• Hey baby, you’re to be a key? Because I can bear your toot?
• I don’t know you.
• I have to give you a book, because you’re the only thing in your eyes.
• Are you a candle? Because you’re so hot of the looks with you.
• If I had a rose for every time I thought of you, I have a price tighting.
• You’re so beautiful that you say a bat on me and baby.
• You look like a thing and I love you.

(3) Red Pill in Reality: From The Guardian, January 26, 2001:

Prince William effect boosts applications to St Andrews

St Andrews University has seen bar far the biggest increase in applications for degree courses among UK universities this year, signaling the ‘Prince William effect’. Applications are up by 44% compared with last year according to figures from the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service.

Last year, the British Council reported a surge in interest from young women – particularly from the United States, after Prince William decided to enrol on an art history degree starting this autumn.

(There was no similar effect for Prince Harry because he enrolled in a military academy instead of a college or university.)

(4) From the comments at Vox Pop, http://voxday.blogspot.com/2018/12/adventures-in-jordanetics.html

Current Year SJWs will not tolerate wrongthink either if they can detect it. It will never be enough to simply go along with the narrative because they will change it in order to trip people up. SJW leftists want and need to persecute.

(5) To shrieking man-hating feminists, I can only cite La Rochefoucauld:

If we do not find peace of mind in ourselves it is useless to seek it elsewhere.

(6) A pic at the Victory Girls blog.

Everything this picture represents: This is what we need to restore.

VictoryGirls

Supreme Court Paves Way for President Trump to Use Military Funds for Wall

Wall

AWESOME!!!

https://www.foxnews.com/politics/supreme-court-paves-way-for-trump-administration-to-use-military-funds-for-border-wall

The Supreme Court sided with the Trump administration on Friday in lifting a freeze backed by a lower court that had halted plans to use $2.5 billion in Pentagon funds for border wall construction.

The decision, which split the bench along ideological lines, allows the administration to move ahead with plans to use military funds to replace existing fencing in California, Arizona and New Mexico.

…The president celebrated the ruling on Twitter: “Wow! Big VICTORY on the Wall. The United States Supreme Court overturns lower court injunction, allows Southern Border Wall to proceed. Big WIN for Border Security and the Rule of Law!”

“We are pleased that the Supreme Court recognized that the lower courts should not have halted construction of walls on the southern border,” Justice Department spokesperson Alexei Woltornist said in a statement. “We will continue to vigorously defend the Administration’s efforts to protect our Nation.”

In related news, Ruth Bader Ginsberg just announced that she recently completed treatment for pancreatic cancer. I think that if the God Emperor is re-elected in 2020, we get at least one more Supreme Court appointment.