Second only to Bitcoin, what unitesi those of us who volunteer our services to The Most Serene Republic is, to be sure, ragging on the fiscally impoverished, wildly delusional, morally bankrupt and intellectually deserted wasteland that is the United States Government, or “USG” for short.ii
In addition to adding the spice of lifeiii – to our daily gatherings, the USG provides not only a common enemy, which is itself a unifying force and a source of strengthened resolve, but it also provides a healthy helping of lulz, or what your grandparents would’ve called “entertainment,”iv the primary source of which is the deep-seeded structural incompetence embedded into
the most visible every extant layer of the mega-metastatic-bureaucracy oozing forth from every pore of that myopic, mayobeasted cesspool. This is a helluva sport if you haven’t tried it yourself.
I particularly enjoy mocking these idiots not only because I stand to personally profit from it – for Bitcoin is nothing if not a hedge against USD hyperinflation, and therefore a short on the entirety of Wall Street, from its forays into SV to its “investments” in “greentech,” not to mention pensions for people who are too worthless to save their own fucking money – but also because I have the honour and privilege of watchingv history repeating itself alongside men who, at not even 40 years of age and as survivors of the 20th century’s great socialist “experiment,” are themselves experiencing history repeat itself for the second time in their relatively short lives.vi That the parallels are so numerous between the USSR and USSA could never be readily apparent to ESLvii bois who grew up in “the biggest fastest strongestest country in the history of the universe.” This is true for reasons of entrenched ignorance that are fundamental to the dysfunctional, nay, gibbled tardtocracy, but… that’s entirely their loss.
Which brings us neatly to today’s discussion about militaries, viz. the United States Armed Forces and their latest “seekrit weapon” : The Predator Drone. To set the stage, first, a quote from an earlier piece :
It is also clear that modern militaries must either fall into one of two camps: decentralized militias that go for the fucking throat (à la ISIS) or megalithic militaries that go for the fucking throat (à la China). None of these in-between big-but-weak (à la USA) or small-but-weak (à la Canada) alternatives will suffice. Alas, that won’t stop them from trying!
So what does this “trying” look like at the present time ? If you guessed “golden toilet RC toys” you win. WaPo has the juicy scoop :
Of the 269 Predators purchased by the Air Force since then, about half have been destroyed or badly damaged in accidents, records show.
The Predator has been our most effective weapon in our campaign against the global jihadists,” said Michael G. Vickers, the Pentagon’s former top civilian intelligence official
When your ~most effective~ weapon is a dismal operational disaster that costs you more to build, maintain, and operate than it causes in damage to your enemies, you’re deeply, deeply defeated. These Predators aren’t cheap either. At $4 mn a pop back in 2010 when the USG was still buying these, so $9.25 mn at today’s rates, just for manufacturing – plus training plus deployment infrastructure, plus overhead for the pilot, plus maintenance, plus plus plus – the Predator was never going to be a free lunch, but when you’re starving for so much as a fireworks display with which to distract your enemies whilst they conquer the territories you spent the previous decade “realigning,”viii you’ll take what you can get.
So it is that the USAF, unable to field so much as a tight-lipped tranny,ix finds itself in the unenviable position of fielding cardboard airplanes fuelled by the only fuel that America has ever had : hope, or in this particular case, hope that no one will walk around to the side to notice that a piece of paper does not a doctor make, just as a rubber stamp does not a citizen make.
Thankfully, the USG/USAF has another trick – a second act – up its sleeve, one that may or may not end like the second act of Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci with “La commedia è finita!” : The Reaper Drone !
In March, the Air Force’s program manager for its Reaper fleet filed a report with the Pentagon noting that there had been “a dramatic increase” in starter-generator failures since 2013.
“Once the battery’s gone, the airplane goes stupid and you lose it,” said Col. Brandon Baker, chief of the Air Force’s remotely piloted aircraft capabilities division. “Quite frankly, we don’t have the root cause ironed out just yet.”
The Reaper carries an emergency battery backup system. But the batteries last only for about one hour. If a malfunctioning drone needs more time than that to reach an airfield, it is in trouble.
General Atomics spokeswoman Kimberly Kasitz said the firm “stands behind the proven reliability” of the Reaper.
LMAO !!!1 Now just imagine the conversation at LizardHitler HQ : “Sir, we have reports that the Bitcoin XTCoreClassic team isn’t providing adequate lulz to our enemies at #b-a. We’ve expended all the resources we had at our disposal and it still isn’t enough. they’re indefatigable sir!” “Send in… the drones. It might not be a perfect plan, but it’s all we have right now. At the very least, it’ll buy us some time. Think big picture.” “Right away, Your Lizardliness!”x
Which brings us around to the seminal comic on the subject :
All of which is to say that the drone lulz are definitely fueling the fire for now, but these twigs and branches won’t keep the flame blazing forever. This kindling is a fine starting point, but the real timber still needs to burn.
___ ___ ___
- Just as the a motley crew of Crusaders united around Pope Urban II’s call to action against Islam in 1095 AD, and just as newly converted Islamist fighters united around Tariq ibn Ziyad some four centuries before that, so too are we empowered, despite our diverse backgrounds, against a common enemy. For without an external enemy, there’s nowhere for your guns to point but inwards, as we’ve all seen the US do in the quarter-century since the end of the Cold War. And nobody wants that.
Thankfully for TMSR~, we’re starting small and have nowhere to go but up. [↩]
- While it may occasionally be the case that “America” is denounced on these pages or in the logs for doing Stupid Thing MMMCLXXIV, it’s really the Administration that’s the focus of the ire (if also, by extension, anyone who willfully submits themselves to its rule, though this is a secondary – if related – consideration).
That the US Administration effectively directs 90%+ of the economic activity in the 50 states merely means that there’s essentially nothing within that Byzantine-like “country“‘s borders, the land where nothing fucking works the way a thinking person would require it to, that isn’t the USG’s fault.
And yes, there’s much blame and scarcely little praise to distribute at the moment, what with 2007-08 unfurling before our very eyes again,* about 6 months too soon for poor President Bahamas to effectively kick the can down the road and into the next Administration’s term in the way that both Man Clinton and Bush Jay-Arr did most recently. Too bad, so sad. I guess Bahamas used up all his free passes in school. Who could’ve predicted he’d only get one shot ?
*I took in The Big Short last night with a few friends and their respective ladies. It turns out that having exceedingly low expectations, particularly when combined with a Steve Carell who didn’t try to be funny (thank god), a barely-present Brad Pitt (thank double-god), a mouthy Ryan Gosling, an “on the spectrum” (and on-the-mark) Christian Bale, and an unbelievably small amount of “bankers are the bad guys” agitpropery, all made for a pretty entertaining film. The thing lacked enough socioeconomic storyline to warrant its own article, but it was the most pleasantly surprising theatre-going experience since Tom Cruise came out of nowhere with The Edge of Tomorrow. So that’s definitely worth a footnote.
Back to the point, the movie ended with a few lines of text about how the big banks are hawking swaps and debt obligations and blah blah “again,” as if the banks could operate otherwise. Needless to say, the “recovery” was QE paper ; the “great recession” is just getting started. Sorry for your loss. [↩]
- Though the girl and I have an inside joke that the spice of life is… routine. We’re old fogeys like that. [↩]
- After all, all work and no play make zealots dull boys. [↩]
- As learned from reading books. Hardcover ones, even. [↩]
- Try that if you’re an inventor. [↩]
- English as a Single Language. [↩]
- No selling oil in Euros for you !!
- See the story of Chelsea Manning. [↩]
- And talk about reliable ! Gotta love how everything is so much more reliable now that “the mass consumers” are there to provide the economies of scale that us better-heeled folks “need” to enjoy all the creature comforts that we do. Or not. [↩]