Archive for November, 2015

23
Nov
15

What Happens in Brussels

…is exactly nothing at all. Years of pervasive surveillance have failed to predict the location of (let alone prevent) a single terrorist attack, and so it shall always be. If something happens in Brussels, it will be after the hysteria blows off; in the meanwhile, islamists have attacked Bamako, resulting in this entertaining piece that tries to explain the facts, as well as where Mali might be, to the English public.

Update (7/12/2015): as Brussels no longer is in a state of emergency (also not to disturb the pre-christmas consumer orgy), absolutely nothing has happened there, albeit there was a shooting in California, which, as usual, hit the NSA, FBI, Homeland Security, and so forth as a ton of bricks. But, hey, if you download a film illegally, you’re in serious trouble, punk.

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15
Nov
15

Paris past the Bullshit

So, ISIL (most likely) has killed 129 (so far) in Paris. Conservative newspapers are ranting about the end of Western Civilization, governments are thinking of putting more attention into reading your email, people are committing inane acts of solidarity, like putting the French flag on Facebook, and you are thinking of a friend of your second cousin who goes to Paris once a year and is therefore, most likely, lying in a pool of blood.

The only people who should be happy about this hysteria are ISIL; because, if you look at it objectively, 129 people are very few. ISIL kills twice as many every time it conquers a new village in Syria, which happens several times a week. Every time your government fires a nurse to hire some email-reading spook, it dooms far more people than that to a far more unpleasant death. Really, the only way one can achieve anything by killing 129 people is if the media blow them out of proportion and people start having their face in three colours on Facebook. And the only way you can fight terrorism is by thinking rationally. Rational thought will tell you that, yes, you have a high chance of being killed by an islamic fundamentalist in Paris; but this is not if you stroll downtown and happen to be involved in a shooting that happens once a year; it is if you stray too far from downtown and end up in the enormous, atrocious banlieu, the suburbs of Paris that the French government, with no other purpose than an idiotic celebration of its colonial past, has filled with unintegrated immigrants from North Africa, and where crime and fundamentalism walk side by side. Which, incidentally, means that, if France closes its borders, it is the rest of Europe that is safer.

Anyhow, if you stick to downtown, that is, if you have money enough, don’t worry: you’ll be able to enjoy that world of laicité, grands écoles, cognac and threesomes that ISIL hates so much (and please, don’t tell me you believe it is because France is actually doing something to hurt them in Syria) for a while still: santé.

Update (16/11/2015): as a Kurdish counter-offensive has taken back Sinjar, graves of 128 Yazidi killed by ISIL have been found; Facebook offers no Iraqi flag option, conservative newspapers fail to rant while France, and your cousin, don’t really give a shit.

07
Nov
15

Happy Anniversary, Comrades

Staunch communists like me, of course, will know that today is the anniversary of the October Revolution (the “October” part is a misnomer due to the use of a different calendar). For the others, here is an old poster whose original yours truly owns, by a freak accident of fate.

Old Soviet poster

An old-school Soviet soldier about to slay the Dragon of Capitalism; after the drawing was made, however, the soldier rode along, and the dragon went away to a 83-years course about how to devour people more efficiently