A Weird Stress-Dream

My subconscious is a horrible nag and pretty much never shuts down unless I’m on opiates. Last night, I was dealing with some “issues” from an afternoon of mess (more on that later, once the problem is resolved) and my subconscious was clearly thinking about metallurgy – specifically creative ideas for layering blade steels.

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Remember The Days When the US Used Nuclear Weapons Against Americans?

Depending on how you want to count it, the US Government killed about a half million Americans using nuclear weapons. That’s a half a million more than the North Koreans, or anyone else, have.

That’s also not counting all the American lives that were shortened by working with radioactive material at Hanford and Oak Ridge, or Idaho Falls, Los Alamos, and other places. These are US citizens who were on the receiving end of nuclear weapons.

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Tactical Head Gear

Hey, it’s Marcus – your tactical consultant – here with another necessary bit of tactical stuff to protect you against all the various threats of the modern world. This is something that, well, if you need this, you’ve got some serious problems about being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

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Vendredi Voltaire: Pas De Héros

“Le Diable s’habille en Voltaire” – Voltaire has the devil inside. [literally “the devil wears Voltaire” like a cloak] [this may be a mis-quote “le diable s’habit en Voltaire” – the devil inhabits Voltaire” sounds almost exactly the same when spoken] Undoubtedly a complex man, and a man of his time, Voltaire also had the flaws of his time. I doubt very much that Voltaire would have accepted “he was a man of his time” as an excuse for someone else’s failings, and neither do I.

No heroes!

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A Lovely Bit of Thinking

This is a piece I stumbled across a few years ago; it’s interesting, especially considering when it was written: 1949. The author was looking back at Europe’s successive troubles and accurately saw the disturbance as an effect of the economics of the industrial revolution. The analysis seems pretty simple to me: imperialism was waning and the vast changes in the European powers’ economies brought on by new industrial processes (in particular, weaponry) created a perfect storm of events that – for a time – discredited capitalism. The Russian revolution was through the process of turning into Stalin’s dictatorship – discrediting communism in turn. Aristocracy, in the form of the family of elite pinheads who destroyed Europe, didn’t look particularly good, either.

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