“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."
Maybe. M a y b eReplyDelete
But I still wonder where O'bozo got his height, and his daddy long legs ?
From Frank Marshall Davis is my best guess.
Wouldn't that make O'bozo the First True Bastard elected Pres of USA ?Delete
I thought the bottom of his feet were white.Delete
Good Catch !Delete
That proves it's a fakaroo !
Odd that Quirk the super sleuth din't notice that .
Certainly they weren't using black ink !
Think, Ash, think !Delete
Everyone agrees he's half white.
His footprints COULDN'T be that black.
I find it more credible to believe that Obama was born in Kenya than I do that Trump colluded with the Russians to beat Clinton.
O'bozo's mother colluded with Frank Marshall Davis.Delete
Only Mueller Knows.
Ash was speaking of himself, of course, as he often does.ReplyDelete
If he keeps it up it might catch on and people will start calling him "Toons".
Scientists warn of mysterious and deadly new epidemic called Disease X that could kill millions around the world
I think I've seen that movie before. And no, it wasn't the Army of the 12 Monkeys that did it. And it wasn't caused by Disease X. And it wasn't a movie.
It originally started one stormy night in the very near future when steel embargos that had their genesis in a simple steel tariff swept the world causing a massive shortage of utility vehicles within the government. As a result a very cute 'secretary' at DOD (all the pool drivers throughout the various departments and agencies within the administration had already left in what was called an 'epidemic' of firings and resignations, actions many feared would spark a pandemic of departures across all skill levels in the government) was asked to put away her steam iron and transport a vial of extremely virulent pathogen from one biologic weapons site in Alabama to another in New Mexico.
We will never know why something this dangerous was being transported across country. Standard DOD practice has been to continue their disposal program on site at a number of disposal facilities scattered around the country thus reducing the danger of one of these bugs getting out.
Anyway, the secretary was forced to take an Uber as maintenance appropriations for government vehicles were severely cut in recent budgets to free up funds for the military's black ops campaign in the Bahamas. Unfortunately, her driver was a young guy with shifty eyes who had just received his license and had the disconcerting habit of texting while driving and when not doing that the even more disconcerting habit of staring at her in the rear view mirror.
The secretary shifted her gaze in an effort to avoid eye contact with the driver who she had silently come to view as 'the creep'. She noticed the Igloo cooler she had been given to take to NM, the crack in one corner of it, the smiling polar bear decal someone had pasted onto it, the big smile and wink and thumbs up the bear was giving her, and the sign someone had scrawled next to the decal with magic marker, 'Danger! Danger! Danger! Cooler contains VERY DANGEROUS SHIT. Do not inhale or drink.'
What the cooler actually contained was not Disease X but rather Quto Badicus (QB) an obligate intracellular bacterial pathogen and the cause of QB-fever, or more accurately, a mutated version of QB designated QB1, a mutated version that was thousands of times more virulent than the original. QB, morphologically similar to BB and PP, but with a variety of genetic and physiological differences is a small Gram-negative bacterium that is highly resistant to environmental stresses such as high temperature, osmotic pressure, and ultraviolet light. These characteristics are attributed to a small cell variant form of the organism that is part of a biphasic developmental cycle, including a more metabolically and replicatively active large cell variant form. It can survive standard disinfectants, and is resistant to many other environmental changes like those presented in the phagolysosome.
I know a man who gave up smoking, drinking, sex, and rich food. He was healthy right up to the day he killed himself.Delete
- Johnny Carson
In the Navy:Delete
"My giving advice on marriage is like the captain of the Titanic giving lessons on navigation"Delete
QuirkSat Mar 10, 09:24:00 PM EST
QBX goes way beyond what the biological warfare scientists at DOD could have ever hoped for when they were developing it. Whereas many pathogens will morph and change over time something we witness each flu season, most of these changes are fairly small and incremental; however, QB1 was prone to constant genetic 'shifting', major changes in its antiginic properties making it virtually impossible to track and cure.
This is what the secretary was transporting as it had been previously rejected by UPS for having faulty packaging and signage.
Around New Orleans, about half way through the trip as the Uber was passing through a thick swampy area, the secretary glanced at the polar bear decal on the cooler and could have sworn it was now winking at her with its other eye. As she bent to get a closer look, her Valentino Clemente mini shifted and the driver who had been watching the whole time rose up in his seat to get a better look. In doing so, he failed to see the huge gator crossing the dirt road. When the Uber (a modified Volkswagen mini) hit the beast, the van went air borne and landed 100 feet out in the bog smashed up against a giant cypress.
Inside the van it was quiet chaos. The driver was way dead. And the secretary was barely conscious. As she was about to pass out she straitened the mini and glanced around the van. She notice the cooler had cracked in half. The bear on the decal was still giving her a thumbs up but his winking face was gone. Next to the cooler was a broken vial with a green liquid dripping from it. She had a strange compulsion to drink it but she didn't. However, she did inhale a microscopic amount of the fumes it was giving off. She turned her head and giggled nervously as she saw an obviously pissed off gator slithering in the van door.
Two days later that same gator was hunted, killed, and eaten by part of Trump's base.
That was how it started.
We will soon know how it ends.
Fade to black.
It's highly likely to wipe out all the urban/suburban areas first, and leave the rural areas alone.
It's all part of the long slow enhancement of the human race.
Not to be feared, at least out this way, but to be celebrated.Delete
Congress will end up 100% Republican too, another added benefit.
Nothing but fly over country left, the coast vacant, empty, wind blown....
Right. I guess. I mean if you consider a Louisiana swamp an urban/suburban area. But I can see where someone from the boondocks of Idaho might view it that way.
The way I see it spreads from the gator to the many Trump supporters that inhabit the swamp and then to the higher intelligence level creatures in the swamp and then on by swamp buggy and air boat to New Orleans and from there through Cajun restaurants across the country it spreads to much of the rest of the country and the world and only then to Moscow, Idaho by way of the weekly stage coach run.
I can show ya the old stage coach hotel at the top of the Lewiston hill if you weren't so lazy and would come out here.Delete
I can show you where Coyote froze Yellowjacket and Ant cause they were fighting, too. Turned them into stone, down by the river. One shouldn't fight about nothing.
Coyote zapped BullShitter too, once, long ago, when he was bullshitting and driving the tribe crazy.Delete
He's only partially buried, his large head sticking out, made of rock.
There are always lesson in these old tales, if only one would listen carefully.
I guess the meaning is, no matter what you try, you can never totally rid the world of bullshitters.
To hell with facts! We need stories!Delete
But it's the truth even if it didn't happen.Delete
- Ken Kesey
I've said so for years.Delete
We can relate to stories.
To relate to the facts below, we need a story.
Doug's rule of life for all situations...
To hell with facts! We need stories!
Saw a factoid the other day. Though the majority of people says they hate the idea of fake news, based on clicks and viewership, fake news stories are 70% more popular than straight news stories.
This should cheer the advertisers of the country up.Delete
If they had to tell the truth - the straight news - about the products they are peddling it would be a tough row to hoe.
Much better to imply that the lawn rake one is using, for instance, will attract the gal next door....
Cartoon Included (for quirk)ReplyDelete
We Still Don't Understand Why Time Only Flows Forward
Starts With A Bang The Universe is out there, waiting for you to discover it
Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.
Ethan Siegel Ethan Siegel , Contributor
NASA / GSFC
The history of the Universe and the arrow of time, which always flows forward in the same direction and at the same rate for any observer.
Every moment that passes finds us traveling from the past to the present and into the future, with time always flowing in the same direction. At no point does it ever appear to either stand still or reverse; the “arrow of time” always points forwards for us. But if we look at the laws of physics — from Newton to Einstein, from Maxwell to Bohr, from Dirac to Feynman — they appear to be time-symmetric. In other words, the equations that govern reality don’t have a preference for which way time flows. The solutions that describe the behavior of any system obeying the laws of physics, as we understand them, are just as valid for time flowing into the past as they are for time flowing into the future. Yet we know from experience that time only flows one way: forwards. So where does the arrow of time come from?
Wikimedia commons users MichaelMaggs and (edited by) Richard Bartz
A ball in mid-bounce has its past and future trajectories determined by the laws of physics, but time will only flow into the future for us.
Many people believe there might be a connection between the arrow of time and a quantity called entropy. While most people normally equate “disorder” with entropy, that’s a pretty lazy description that also isn’t particularly accurate. Instead, think about entropy as a measure of how much thermal (heat) energy could possibly be turned into useful, mechanical work. If you have a lot of this energy capable of potentially doing work, you have a low-entropy system, whereas if you have very little, you have a high-entropy system. The second law of thermodynamics is a very important relation in physics, and it states that the entropy of a closed (self-contained) system can only increase or stay the same over time; it can never go down. In other words, over time, the entropy of the entire Universe must increase. It’s the only law of physics that appears to have a preferred direction for time.
C. Sorensen-Unruh / YouTube
Still from a lecture on entropy by Clarissa Sorensen-Unruh.
So, does that mean that we only experience time the way we do because of the second law of thermodynamics? That there’s a fundamentally deep connection between the arrow of time and entropy? Some physicists think so, and it’s certainly a possibility. In an interesting, 2016 collaboration between the MinutePhysics YouTube channel and physicist Sean Carroll, author of The Big Picture, From Eternity To Here, and an entropy/time’s arrow fan, they attempt to answer the question of why time doesn’t flow backwards. Unsurprisingly, they point the finger squarely at entropy.Delete
It’s true that entropy does explain the arrow of time for a number of phenomena, including why coffee and milk mix but don’t unmix, why ice melts into a warm drink but never spontaneously arises along with a warm beverage from a cool drink, and why a cooked scrambled egg never resolves back into an uncooked, separated albumen and yolk. In all of these cases, an initially lower-entropy state (with more available, capable-of-doing-work energy) has moved into a higher-entropy (and lower available energy) state as time has moved forwards. There are plenty of examples of this in nature, including of a room filled with molecules: one side full of cold, slow-moving molecules and the other full of hot, fast-moving ones. Simply give it time, and the room will be fully mixed with intermediate-energy particles, representing a large increase in entropy and an irreversible reaction.
Wikimedia Commons users Htkym and Dhollm
A system set up in the initial conditions on the left and let to evolve will become the system on the right spontaneously, gaining entropy in the process.
Except, it isn’t irreversible completely. You see, there’s a caveat that most people forget when it comes to the second law of thermodynamics and entropy increase: it only refers to the entropy of a closed system, or a system where no external energy or changes in entropy are added or taken away. A way to reverse this reaction was first thought up by the great physicist James Clerk Maxwell way back in the 1870s: simply have an external entity that opens a divide between the two sides of the room when it allows the “cold” molecules to flow onto one side and the “hot” molecules to flow onto the other. This idea became known as Maxwell’s demon, and it enables you to decrease the entropy of the system after all!
Wikimedia Commons user Htkym
A representation of Maxwell’s demon, which can sort particles according to their energy on either side of a box.
You can’t actually violate the second law of thermodynamics by doing this, of course. The catch is that the demon must spend a tremendous amount of energy to segregate the particles like this. The system, under the influence of the demon, is an open system; if you include the entropy of the demon itself in the total system of particles, you’ll find that the total entropy does, in fact, increase overall. But here’s the kicker: even if you lived in the box and failed to detect the existence of the demon — in other words, if all you did was live in a pocket of the Universe that saw its entropy decrease — time would still run forward for you. The thermodynamic arrow of time does not determine the direction in which we perceive time’s passage.Delete
No matter how we change the entropy of the Universe around us, time continues to pass for all observers at the rate of one second per second.
So where does the arrow of time that correlates with our perception come from? We don’t know. What we do know, however, is that the thermodynamic arrow of time isn’t it. Our measurements of entropy in the Universe know of only one possible tremendous decrease in all of cosmic history: the end of cosmic inflation and its transition to the hot Big Bang. (And even that may have represented a very large increase in entropy, going from an inflationary state to a matter-and-radiation-filled state.) We know our Universe is headed to a cold, empty fate after all the stars burn out, after all the black holes decay, after dark energy drives the unbound galaxies apart from one another and gravitational interactions kick out the last remaining bound planetary and stellar remnants. This thermodynamic state of maximal entropy is known as the “heat death” of the Universe. Oddly enough, the state from which our Universe arose — the state of cosmic inflation — has exactly the same properties, only with a much larger expansion rate during the inflationary epoch than our current, dark energy-dominated epoch will lead to.
E. Siegel / Beyond the Galaxy
The quantum nature of inflation means that it ends in some “pockets” of the Universe and continues in others, but we do not yet understand either what the amount of entropy was during inflation or how it gave rise to the low-entropy state at the start of the hot Big Bang.
How did inflation come to an end? How did the vacuum energy of the Universe, the energy inherent to empty space itself, get converted into a thermally hot bath of particles, antiparticles and radiation? And did the Universe go from an incredibly high-entropy state during cosmic inflation to a lower-entropy one during the hot Big Bang, or was the entropy during inflation even lower due to the eventual capacity of the Universe to do mechanical work? At this point, we have only theories to guide us; the experimental or observational signatures that would tell us the answers to these questions have not been uncovered.
E. Siegel, with images derived from ESA/Planck and the DoE/NASA/ NSF interagency task force on CMB research
From the end of inflation and the start of the hot Big Bang, entropy always increases up through the present day.
We do understand the arrow of time from a thermodynamic perspective, and that’s an incredibly valuable and interesting piece of knowledge. But if you want to know why yesterday is in the immutable past, tomorrow will arrive in a day and the present is what you’re living right now, thermodynamics won’t give you the answer. Nobody, in fact, understands what will.
Astrophysicist and author Ethan Siegel is the founder and primary writer of Starts With A Bang! His books, Treknology and Beyond The Galaxy, are available wherever books are sold.
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