Posted by: bkivey | 12 April 2021

The Great Asian Co-Op

I have noticed the past six months that Asians are now referred to as People Of Color (POC). Asians have ‘historically been denied’ the opportunity to join the POC grievance group, as Asians tend to ‘do’, rather than ‘demonstrate’. I would estimate that the percentage of Asians on any sort of government assistance is very small. I, personally, have never met one, or seen one in a welfare office.

A large part of that is because getting here from Asia and India is rather difficult. Anyone immigrating is going to have the resources (money/ability/connections) to be self-sufficient. And, like Europeans, Asians come from a culture of achievement. They are not ones to sit around waiting for others. Thus, America appeals to them: they can achieve to their heart’s content.

It is apparent that The United States as a unified country is done. Sides are being picked, and the POC would like some allies. Allies that White people are seemingly comfortable with. And, as far as the Left can see, Asians have some real grievances with White people.

  • Vietnam
  • WW II
  • Japanese internment
  • Chinese labor on the railroads
  • Commodore Perry
  • Beijing Occupation
  • The Raj

Now, I don’t ever recall a single American of Japanese ancestry demanding privilege and compensation for the internment of their ancestors. Indeed, thousands of Nisei volunteered for military duty, even as their parents were held in internment. About 1500 of them volunteered while in internment. I don’t recall any Jewish combat units fighting for the Nazis. The 442nd Infantry Regiment became one of the most highly-decorated units of the war. Seriously, go read the article. It’s damned impressive.

And every single Vietnamese that could, fled the country after the Americans left. To come to America. If someone is oppressing you, then leaves, you don’t go live in their house, do you?

There are large Chinese communities all over the globe, and an active Chinatown is a frenzied den of commerce. The Indians took what the British offered during the Raj, and used it to their benefit. After they kicked the British out, the knowledge and achievement-oriented influence remained.

All over the Eastern world, people embraced what the West had to offer. And while there was the usual friction when accomplished cultures meet, the East saw that the West could help them. The Western libertarian philosophies and organized approach to problem-solving could complement the ability and discipline of the East. Even the most restrictive society on the planet has realized that, to a commercially and politically successful point.

So, how does that fit in with the POC? It doesn’t, really. Which is why the POC need to involuntarily co-opt the Asians. Part of that effort are stories in the media purporting to show an increase in anti-Asian sentiment. There are, seemingly out of nowhere, support groups for Asians and groups formed against anti-Asian sentiment. What is going on, is that the POC is trying to fabricate a ‘crisis’, so White people will have something else to feel guilty about, and so become even more easily manipulated.

Presumably the POC political calculus considers that China is full of Asians, and the long game may be to get China supporting the POC, which would make geo-political life very difficult for the US. Not a certainty the POC are looking for that, but a reasonable consideration.

While I cannot begin to speak for anyone but myself, as someone who comes from a culture of achievement, I can say that I would highly resent being drafted into someone else’s destructive hysteria. Especially when I am doing just fine without you, thank you very much for asking. I would also be highly annoyed if a group of whiners tried to hitch themselves to the coattails of my success.

I have only really noticed this the last six months, and it may have gone on longer. But given the seeming lack of interest among Asians, it’s probably still early in the social cycle for this development. Maybe folks will notice, and oppose the effort, or maybe they will decide the POC is the winning horse. Given history, that seems unlikely, but then, a lot of unlikely things have happened recently.

Related Reading

Somewhat Related Reading

A Warning From The Universe

The weather lately has been great: mid-50’s and blue skies. Time for some fun.

Saturday I was out hooning the Mazda, when I came upon an Oregon State Patrol trooper parked at an intersection in the middle of nowhere. Now, I had been a little sloppy on a curve with traffic a couple miles previously. No one was in danger, but maybe you’re not expected a red car screaming around the corner. I don’t think the trooper was called, but a mindful coincidence. I went to the junkyard over the weekend for parts, so maybe time to do some work on the car.

Posted by: bkivey | 7 April 2021

Rat-A-Tat-Tat

There has been a rat on the property the last several weeks, and on-going efforts to render the property politician-free. Kidding. It’s a real rat. Or was.

The property backs up to woods, and there are the usual amount of woods-critters present. Until recently, cats kept all but the boldest (opossums, raccoons) at bay. And with the cats away. . .

The first incidence came when I got home and found the grease bottle (quart milk jug) gnawed through and grease on the counter. The rat had gotten a good fill of kitchen grease. At this time, I knew that:

1) A rat’s ass had been on my kitchen counter.

2) Nothing was safe.

I have respect for rats. They are smart. They have been living with humans since time began. And while they are reputed to make good pets, this was a wild rat. Ratas v Hombre. Of course, there could only be one outcome, but I expected the rat to be a tough opponent.

The initial attack was with a standard rat-trap, smeared with honey on the bait area, so the rat would have to approach and lick, rather than knock the bait off the stage. The rat (I imagine) laughed. The trap was never touched. I added a bait trap near the recycling bag (where the rat had gnawed), and a bait tray under the sink. I was surprised and disappointed that I couldn’t outright purchase strychnine. Throw some in some kitchen grease in a bowl: done. Which would have been nice, because the rat conspicuously ignored all the traps.

I cannot have a rat in the house. A trip to Coastal Farm & Ranch, catering to folks who work for a living, yielded sticky traps. These are about 5 x 12 inches and coated on one side with a very sticky glue. The idea is that the rodent will get stuck, and can then be dispatched. By this time the rat had been around for a couple of weeks, so I knew where it liked to go. The sticky traps were 2/$5, and I put them in front the of the cabinets the rat liked to use.

And, sure enough, the rat came out of a cabinet, tried to leap the trap, and got it’s tail caught. I was up with the pipe, and the rat ran behind the stove with the paper stuck to it’s tail. It ran into a support channel for the stove, but couldn’t get any further, because of the trap stuck to it. I had buoyed the shark.

Tilting the stove forward, I could see the rat, and that it wasn’t going anywhere with the paper stuck to it. I didn’t know if this was a hard-core rat, and would gnaw it’s tail off to escape. I did not want to handle a pissed-off rat with unknown health history, alone, so I called a neighbor, and he came over with a BB rifle. Donning leather gloves, I fished the rat out of the stove. As expected, it was plenty feisty. My friend administered the coup de grace, and that was it.

The Nerdiest (And Coolest) Thing I Have Seen This Year

I didn’t go to engineering school to learn to how to do a specific type of engineering, particularly, but it did offer a way to figure stuff out. I think it’s cool to analyze a situation and come up with a (possible) solution. I have, in fact, analyzed TV commercials and movie trailers to see if they would ‘work’. It’s a useful approach (‘don’t guess, know’), and is, well, fun.

Over on the Jalopnik site Senior Technical Editor David Tracy published an article analyzing a home-built engine crane from a photo. He does the full mechanical analysis by the book, the same way a student, or very junior engineer, would do it. It is the kind of thing that makes mechanical nerds squee.

The conclusion is what most people would intuitively know: that while the wood will stand up, the connections won’t. The remedy is equally apparent, even without the analysis. You might think, ‘Well, that’s obvious.’, and it is. But, now we know. And now that the analysis is done, other improvements might suggest themselves.

Yes, a lot of (pointless) work for a temporary structure built for one job for a short time; which the author points out. But, it is fun.

Posted by: bkivey | 8 March 2021

Random Thoughts in March

The Mazda

One of the neighbors (jokingly) observed that the Mazda didn’t get driven very much. Well, it’s Winter. Roads are wet, and the car is optimized for dry road. Took care of that this week. More fun, and since insurance was due this month; motivation to get some money’s worth. That car makes me smile just pulling out of the driveway.

Birds

I mentioned earlier that robins hadn’t yet appeared, but were expected soon. And going outside early one morning, there was a fat example on the stairs. There seems to be a pair nesting in the woods close aboard. Size-wise amongst songbirds, robins appear to come in between sparrows/wrens, and crows. I have seen robins battle owls, and other songbirds harass them, but have not seen crow v. owl. Guessing the owls don’t want a part of that.

You can hear the Mallards as they fly in and out of their ‘spot’ on the creek. Sometimes see lone Canada geese overhead, and wonder why they are honking. My understanding is that geese honk to encourage others in the flock, but if a goose is alone, what’s the point? Maybe they are avian ‘maskers’.

Days Longer

So we can go to about 1830 now with daylight. My goodness. We are a quarter through the year.

Posted by: bkivey | 1 March 2021

MC Femme

Over the past several days local jazz station KMHD has been featuring female MC’s on some weekend programs. And the ladies are ripping it. The first exposure was on a Sugar Hill Gang song, but I cannot find the credit. One might expect female MC’s to do well, as women have a generally better command of language than men. Illustrated to me when my high-school-aged middle sister won an award for a (non-native) German-language poem. My English PhD-student father remarked that he couldn’t win an award for a poem in English.

Just mentioned here, because the Universe is a wonderful and interesting place, if we take the time to appreciate it.

Posted by: bkivey | 25 February 2021

The Other Black History

From the 25 February 2021 edition of the UK Daily Mail comes this story, about an incident at Smith College in Massachusetts where a Black student claimed racial harassment. As they say, read the whole thing. It is enlightening. The article includes extensive quotes from all parties, as well as the conversation between the student and campus security, recorded by the student. Nothing out of context, here.

After an extensive, (and, I bet, expensive) legal investigation, a campus internal security investigation, and the introduction of numerous racial-bias awareness programs, it turns out the student manufactured the whole racial bias incident. The student not only made a stink on campus, but took to social media, and contacted the ACLU over the alleged ‘bias’. None of it was true.

This person, who is an actual African-American (parents from Mali), has no ancestral history of slavery or oppression in this country. But they have been taught that because they are Black in America, they are automatically victims. They are aided and abetted by White liberals, who do at least as much to perpetuate Black victimhood as Black leadership. They have been co-opted into someone else’s hysteria, and they are not self-aware enough to notice. Intelligence does not guarantee sentience.

The article notes that at least four people, and none of them the student, were seriously and negatively affected by the incident, ranging from job loss to physical and mental health issues. None of these people committed any transgression, other than they were not People of Color. There is no indication in the article that the student apologized to anyone, or offered any sort of compensation for ruining people’s lives, or indeed, suffered any negative consequences at all. They do talk about their victim status quite a lot. About an incident, you will recall, they completely fabricated.

Such is the ‘other’, less celebrated Black history: the perpetuation of victimization without evidence or consequence. If playing the oppressed is your only source of validation, you shouldn’t be surprised when you struggle.

Related Reading

Readings From the Progressive Church

Racism by Proxy

New Leadership for the Race Industry

Liberal Language

Listening to local classical station KQAC when the announcer said the cellist was a British African-American. Say what? I would bet that no Black British citizen refers to themselves as ‘African-American’. But when you are trying to be PC all the time, common sense is useless.

Avalanche Warning

This evening the local Emergency Broadcast Radio made an announcement. People are used to hearing tests of the system, but usually in the wee hours. During normal hours, so to speak, it catches your attention. Which is the purpose. This announcement pertained to avalanche danger around Mt. Hood. Makes sense. A lot of people winter recreating on or near the mountain. It’s useful information. The part that struck me was that “Travel in avalanche zones is not recommended.”

Do tell.

“Hello, ranger station.”

“Hi. I’d like to do some camping and hiking on Mt. Hood, and wondered if you had any recommendations?”

“Well, we have some dangerous avalanche zones higher on the mountain.”

“Really? Thanks!”

Posted by: bkivey | 24 February 2021

The Effervescence of Societal Memory

It occurs to me that the botched, and shall we say, unnecessarily onerous, government response to the COVID-19 pandemic may not entirely be the fault of the people in charge. It may be in part due to the fact that humans have forgotten how to deal with widespread viral infections. We have taken a world where such things generally don’t exist, for granted, and the Universe has a way of biting you in the butt when you do that.

When I was a child, chickenpox was common. Every kid expected to get it, and it is highly contagious in the active phase. Kids stayed home, and if I recall, were miserable for about a week. The parents had likely had the disease, so no worries there, and if you had siblings, well, you did the best you could. Mostly confined to your room. I remember a couple of kid’s parents had not had chickenpox, and had to take measures. We were all kind of amazed. Everyone had that disease. The varicella vaccine became commercially available in 1984, so for 35 years, that rite of childhood has been thankfully missing.

You don’t have to go back too far past my childhood to find a whole host of deadly virus’s rampant. Smallpox was not uncommon, and wasn’t eradicated until 1980; 40 years ago. During my parent’s childhood, mumps, rubella, and whooping cough were things to watch for. Influenza vaccines have been available since the 1940’s, so we have 80 years of preventable flu pandemic. And up until the 1920’s, polio was a significant childhood disease, but we’ve had a vaccine for nearly 100 years. All of these diseases were more common, and far more deadly, than COVID-19.

It has been nearly two generations since people have had to deal with common, potentially deadly, viral infections. Compared to what people lived with even a half-century ago, COVID-19 is small beer. And I have seen evidence of that in how people treat the disease protocols. Older folks, the ones most at risk, seem to care the least about masking and social distancing. These folks were also generally raised to be adults, rather than children. People under 35 seem to want to adhere to the protocols the most, even though they are least at-risk. Prima facia, it doesn’t make sense. You would think it would be the opposite. But folks in their 60’s and 70’s have likely survived a number of diseases, including several variants of flu. They know that following common-sense protocols are effective: cover your cough, wash your hands, stay home if you’re sick. It works.

We’ve just forgotten how to deal with this situation; a situation that not so long ago was common. Even so, it is disheartening that something we used take in our stride could be so easily forgotten.

Spring Is In the Air?

I’ve noted that the Winter’s have gotten shorter, warmer, and wetter later in the season. I have not heard a single person wish for colder weather, though. We had some winter weather last week, and I was hoping not to see snow this year, but there it was. The songbirds came back last week (!), and it was interesting to see the interaction between birds and weather. Before the storm hit, the birds were silent. Later, even though the sky was threatening, the birds came out, and I figured the snow was done. It was. Fun to watch that kind of stuff.

The Mallard pair is back on the creek, and I do not understand how ducks can nonchalantly swim around in 35F water. Just watching them makes me cold. Good to see them back. When I lived in Kent, WA, there was a Mallard pair that made their home in the backyard fishpond. We looked forward to seeing them every year.

The owls are back, and out during the day, which means they are looking for mates. It sounds like the same owls are around, and some woodpeckers have started in. Haven’t seen a robin yet, but if past years are an indication, there should be some soon.

Posted by: bkivey | 14 February 2021

COVID-19 Raperations

[Spoken] “Phelonious B is in effect!”

[Sample “Only 16” Sam Cooke 1959]

“It was COVID-19; COVID-19; and what did we know?

We didn’t know jack, right from the start, and we were too dumb to grow.”

[Hit the beats]

[Intro]

Straight out of Wuhan the virus was comin’

Panic-time the media was drumming

Hide the kids; the elderly

[Spoken] It’s the disease of the century

{NOW!}

Panic in the streets, and health care treasured

Social distance; a grave length measured

Then everything cool; if we’d wear masks

[Spoken]”Only a few months”; not such a big ask

{NOW!}

A year on; we’re wearing face diapers

If you wear glasses; a homie needs wipers

“Masks Save Lives” is what they say

[Spoken] but if a brother is healthy, how does that play?

{NOW!}

We got a vaccine; the danger is fading

Time to give the disease a de-rating

Restrictions; rules: they are invidious

[Spoken] Now I know they just effing with us.

Posted by: bkivey | 1 February 2021

Doers and Obscurers

Went down an internet sidetrack, and found this story about a girl growing a monster cabbage. Go look at it. It’s huge. Some PC elements to the story, but overall, a positive bit of news in the community.  A doer.

I was looking for a music-effects machine, and while looking at one, found a California Prop 65 Warning:

WARNING: Cancer and Reproductive Harm – www.p65Warnings.ca.gov.

The link goes to the CA government page on Prop 65, but doesn’t provide any information on why this product might need to display the warning.

“Man, those beats are crucial.”

“Yeah, crucial as a heart attack. Oh, wait. . .”

So, someone is looking for some sound equipment, and they see the Big Bad Prop 65 warning on the product. Is it powered by uranium? No. Want to know why the warning applies? Can’t help you there. 

Now, it is a bit curious that the manufacturer doesn’t provide information, but they aren’t the ones slapping up the warning. Maybe California could explicate? An obscurer. 

Posted by: bkivey | 23 January 2021

Exercising The Mazda

It’s been a warm, wet Winter so far, and that’s fine. No snow is good snow. And there have been some opportunities to drive the Mazda.

NW Moreland Rd. 22 January 2021 1430hrs

Posted speed limit is 55 mph, and I don’t exceed 60. The idea is to cover the road efficiently within the legal limit.

Alright! Curve coming up, downshift, no brake. Past the apex, upshift, into the straight. S-curve; downshift, whoa!, more curve than anticipated, downshift, apex, up shift, heavy on the throttle, upshift, upshift. Watch the speed on the straight. Corner. Off the throttle. Downshift, downshift, just off the brake and past the apex. Upshift, upshift. Sun in face, Can’t see the road. Slow down a bit. Still can’t see road: curve markers coming up. Downshift, wait, downshift. On the brake a little. Slam up two shifts for the straight, then down for the next curve. Tires screeching a bit. No oncoming traffic, but I’m in the lane. Upshift, upshift.

So much fun.

In my lifetime, I expect to see EV’s become the majority vehicle, and some will carve roads at least as well as any internal combustion car today. The acceleration and thrills will be the same, but the soundtrack of a willing engine will be missing. The Mazda has a little I4 engine, but as I’ve noted, Mazda has figured out how to get the most out of a given set of components. I’ve had cars with built American V-8’s, and that’s a soundtrack that’s hard to beat. Very good in the quarter, but the Mazda would have them on any kind of road. Even with a freshened suspension, I still remember the ‘Whoa!’ feeling when throwing 2 tons of 60’s iron around a corner at speed.

I think there’s maybe two generations left that will know the visceral pleasure of internal combustion doing it’s thing on a fun road. That’s not bad; just different. Performance will improve, but not the memories.

Posted by: bkivey | 20 January 2021

Inauguration Day 2021

Whether their candidate won or not, Americans have been able to take comfort in the peaceful transition (or maintenance), of power in the Federal government. Someone comes in, someone goes out, or hangs around, depending on the election. New Presidents, like most things people worry about, are nearly never as bad as feared, or as good as desired. You casts your vote and takes your chances.

I voted in my first election in 1982, as I was just a touch too young to vote in 1980. My first voting Presidential election was 1984, and I cast my lot for Ronald Reagan. It did, and still does, feel good to add my voice. Civilization is a participation sport.

Up until 2000, even if your party lost, you had confidence in the process. The United States had an electoral system modeled all over the world. My vote counts, and it will be counted fairly.

Well, until Albert Gore Jr. lost the Presidential election. Then it was lawyers en masse and hanging chads and “we have to make sure every vote is counted”, despite a lot of Bush votes going missing. And so for the next eight years of the Bush Administration, there was constant Progressive pressure. I posted some of those images here, in a post from 2011. That’s violent stuff, but protected under the 1st Amendment. 

Also protected is the right to forcefully express your opinion in a public forum. But, here’s the thing. The societal contract, and good sportsmanship, demand that if you lose a contest, you shut up about it and prepare for the next competition. Americans will support an underdog, but not if the underdog is a yappy dog that won’t shut up about changing the rules so they can win. Or just straight cheating. Either one works, apparently. 

Even to Democrat Party supporters, this victory feels hollow. I know some folks of the Democrat persuasion, and they are rather subdued. Because they know that one of the basic rules of a civilized society has been violated the last four years: Shut up, and move on. 

Whether or not you voted for the current President and Party, there are some serious questions:

  • Ever notice how dead folks only vote for Democrats? Ever?
  • There is enough evidence of vote tampering to meet the civil standard, and that meets the standard for an investigation to see if the criminal standard has been met. 
  • But no Democrat wants an investigation. Why not? If one puts the interests of the country first, then the integrity of the electoral process should be unassailable. In a ‘fair’ society, everyone has an interest in a robust process. 
  • And the Party of ‘Fairness’, ‘Equality’, and ‘Access’, seems to have no interest in actually, you know, ensuring these things. ‘Power’, ‘Privilege’, and ‘Exclusion’, appear to be the order of the day. 

These are the bare facts; none of this is conspiracy, or fabricated. It’s right there in front of everyone’s faces in the news every day. Although, if you want a more accurate reporting of event in the US, you may want to look at foreign news. 

Look around you, folks. This is not who we are, and it’s never what we wanted to be. 

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