Carping Comments: Pearl Sand or Voted Off The Island?

I have a dilemma / conflict.

On the one hand, I believe in letting every polite voice be heard.
On the other hand, my philosophy of “Be The Mirror” in a banning world says to ban.

On the one hand, being challenged with bits of sand in the gills can lead to pearl construction.
On the other hand, why put up with shit? Vote the problem off the island.

I’m in a state of personal dynamic balance. Also known as fence sitting. And, as straddling a fence is not that good for folks (or parts of folks in any case…): I need to get off the fence.

So I’m proposing that y’all get to vote on what I get to do. One vote per person.

The topic is Serioso. Is he worth keeping around as sand in the gills, or do you folks want to vote him off the island? Serioso gets no vote, and I’m the sole decider at the end anyway.

The Context

Many of you may have missed it (or not missed it at all and just avoided looking at it ;-); but Serioso was endlessly reposting a NYT link to a “timeline” article of the Troubles at the capital. I’d just gotten home from a Grand Marathon Trip of about 7600 driving miles in 2 weeks and was pretty much drained. Being expedited on something that would take a good chunk of my time to “illustrate the crap in it” was not high on my priority list. “Irritated” more than sand… but eventually I DID post my ‘rebuttle’ to the NYT crap. I’ll reproduce ONE of the 4 comments / reply to the Serioso stuff.


Quoted in full. Note my long and detailed analysis of the NYT spinmatic propaganda content, embedded into his comment as he was in Moderation Jail:

Serioso says:
15 January 2021 at 5:33 pm (Edit)
I am confused. You asked me for a more accurate timeline of the events in the Capitol. I thought I provided you with just that, on two separate occasions. As far as I can tell, you deleted both posts. Here it is once again. I think this is a useful for everyone to see.

Reply: From Here On Down -E.M.S.:

First off, the NYT has gone fully Left Partisan. Your insistence on them as some kind of truth teller is naive at best. But that aside, Let’s look at the various bits they spin up.

The footage shows the simultaneous and alternating perspectives of Mr. Trump at the podium, the lawmakers inside the Capitol and the swelling numbers — and growing violence — of the rioters on the ground.

First off, pretty much everyone was on site by about 8 AM. There were no “swelling numbers” after the initial fill-up of the place first thing in the morning. (I was part of it and can assure you, by about 8 AM there was no space left in the Ellipse area all the way past the Washington Monument)

Second, there was no “growing violence”. Everything at the Ellipse, where Trump was speaking, was ENTIRELY 100% peaceful through the end of his speech. At the Capitol Building, near as I can tell from other reports of people who were there, nothing much happened until after noon when some Antifa / BLM Agent Provocateurs managed to goad some Useful Idiots into mounting the Capitol Steps (hardly a violent act in itself) and breaking into the building (that video shows was instigated by an Antifa guy – identified as such by photos of him at Antifa events – breaking a door with a helmet) that WAS violent, but very limited in scope.

Then they label with “rioters on the ground” without any attempt to identify SIZE / Number or WHO they were. Out of something that looked like (and was described as) well over 100,000 folks, you have MAYBE 100 ish on the steps and a couple of dozen inside the building. Why not point that out, eh? WHY try to paint the VAST MAJORITY who were peaceful family types as “rioters” when they were not? SPIN for effect, that’s why.

Note we’re not even through the first sentences of their piece and it’s already smelling like trash spin for effect. This is what you quote and think is valid evidence?

Before Noon
A Brewing Storm

Yet MORE lies and spin. Again *I WAS THERE*. There was no “brewing storm”. It was a party like atmosphere. Smiling faces. Polite people. Lots of cooperation and sense of hopeful expectations. Folks were largely in a party mood.

Now I can’t speak to the Antifa / BLM infiltrated and perhaps organized group on the Capitol Lawn, I could see them being cranky. BUT, that’s a very tiny number compared to the huge crowd that covered all the way from the ellipse past the Washington Monument to the Mall. THOSE were the real Trump Supporters. Look at photos of them. Smiles, families, fun people having a good time. (I have more such photos)

For weeks, Mr. Trump had urged his supporters to go to Washington to stop the certification of the election results, and several simultaneous rallies were planned for Wednesday.

As the morning arrives, hundreds assemble on the Capitol lawn, more than a mile away from where Trump will soon speak near the White House. Among them are the Proud Boys, a far-right group, identifiable here by their orange hats.

Yet more garbage spin. Trump was NOT asking folks to “stop the certification”, he was asking folks to ‘certify the legal ballots and audit the illegal ones’. HUGE difference.

Do you REALLY support the blatant FRAUDULENT ballots being counted? Do you REALLY think it is a good idea to accept a count based on corrupted machines? Shown to be corrupted by what limited audits have been done?

Then, the Proud Boys are NOT a “far right” group. They do hold some traditional values, but mostly just want their members to be honest with themselves and do what’s right. The painting of them as “far right” is propaganda spin from The Left. Just like calling them ‘Racist’ is. Their leader being Afro Caribbean and having lots of Black and Hispanic membership.

BTW, I’ve seen no evidence what so ever that the Proud Boys were wearing orange hats. They never have in any prior video I’ve seen of them at other events. That, at this point, is at best a bald assertion, unsupported. We do know that many BLM and Antifa folks where doing a False Flag and wearing Trump gear (or what they thought it was) as some have already been arrested. So just HOW can NYT know who those folks are wearing orange knit caps? No evidence involved…

We do get occasional glimmers of truth in the NYT hit piece, but scattered in such as way as to hide the meaning:

At the same time, near the White House, Donald Trump Jr. films the president and his inner circle backstage before his father’s speech. In a video uploaded to his Facebook page, they are listening to the song “Gloria” and marveling at the size of the crowd.

Juxtaposed with the “asserted Proud Boys” and conjoined with “far right wing” pejorative above, is this text that shows in fact Trump was 1.8 to 2 MILES away with the Big Crowd.

Why not point out Trump was nowhere near the Capitol Building, and any incipient Troubles? Why not point out that the vast bulk of Trump Supporters were in that Big Crowd and it was full of happy peaceful people? Spin, that’s why.

Then it goes way off the rails:

Trump calls for march on Capitol.

A large crowd heads in that direction.
About 15 minutes into his speech, Mr. Trump tells rally attendees to walk to the Capitol. “You have to show strength,” he says.

At this moment, the Capitol grounds are protected by temporary perimeter fences, and there are few officers equipped to defend them.

First off, they have the time wrong. Second, missing context (a classic propaganda ploy).

Here’s the actual first occurrence of “show strength” in context:

Donald Trump: (16:25)
Our media is not free. It’s not fair. It suppresses thought. It suppresses speech, and it’s become the enemy of the people. It’s become the enemy of the people. It’s the biggest problem we have in this country. No third world countries would even attempt to do what we caught them doing and you’ll hear about that in just a few minutes. Republicans are constantly fighting like a boxer with his hands tied behind his back. It’s like a boxer, and we want to be so nice. We want to be so respectful of everybody, including bad people. We’re going to have to fight much harder and Mike Pence is going to have to come through for us. If he doesn’t, that will be a sad day for our country because you’re sworn to uphold our constitution. Now it is up to Congress to confront this egregious assault on our democracy. After this, we’re going to walk down and I’ll be there with you. We’re going to walk down. We’re going to walk down any one you want, but I think right here. We’re going walk down to the Capitol, and we’re going to cheer on our brave senators, and congressmen and women. We’re probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them because you’ll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength, and you have to be strong.

So at 16:25+ minutes, and IN THE CONTEXT OF cheering on Senators and congress critters.

Doesn’t sound so ominous now, does it.

Then that the Capitol grounds are “protected” poorly again has no context. Was this a coordinated effort to set up a False Flag by Pelosi and Co with the DC folks? SHE repeatedly did thing to weaken “defenses”. Given that we now KNOW Antifa and BLM folks were involved as False Flag participants in Trump Gear (arrests made, photos identified, remember…) it is not a large leap to thinking it was also somewhat “set up” from the defense side. Nor even that the NYT is in on the scam as propaganda wing. They have been so in the past.

This next one is a hoot…

Supporters leave the rally in a steady stream before Mr. Trump’s speech ends, and they head toward the Capitol.

12:29 p.m. Constitution Ave.

Anyone leaving at that time was either cold to the bone, or looking for a bathroom, or just heading home as there was no adequate facilities.

I was in the crowd at the Ellipse then. NOBODY was leaving until Trump was ready to speak, and then they were largely “in the moment” until after a full hour of the speech.

My best guess is that anyone leaving early (as I saw NONE moving through the crowd at that time stamp) would be folks at the far edge of the crowd, down the backside of the Washington Monument hill or way out at the Mall area who could not even hear what was being said as they were so far away. I was near the “Jumbotron” for the overflow area, and the crowd went past the Washington Monument from there. I doubt you could even get to Constitution Avenue from there if you tried (and nobody was trying).

There was one row of “porta potties” that was clearly inadequate with lines. I had the good sense NOT to “hydrate” so did 8 hours, no pee break. At about the 1 hour mark of Trumps speech (well AFTER the above claimed time) some folks DID start leaving a few minutes early. Most were doing some variation of the “I’m cold slap dance” or the “where’s the potty” wiggle dance. NOBODY was headed to The Capitol Building for any “event”.

It is a Damn Lie to claim they have any idea what was in the minds of the folks walking down Constitution Avenue. The Reagan building was open for toilets and some folks were headed there (no, I don’t know where it is exactly) along with looking for warmth and / or portapotties and places to put accumulated trash.

There was also another event at the far end of the Mall. It is just as likely these folks are from that event, seeing that they could not get near the Trump speech area. A real timeline would account for that, too.

Notice also the use of “march”. Folks were walking, not marching. There was no cadence, no ranks, no deliberation. Just folks walking the only way they could go to get back to where all the parking was at.

As they arrive, another crowd of Trump supporters that has already gathered along the west perimeter fence becomes more agitated.

12:49 p.m. West of the Capitol grounds

Facts not in evidence. How do we KNOW the people walking “arrived” anywhere in particular? There were already 2 ‘events’ at the Capitol Building grounds, so not alot of room for more folks to “arrive”. My best guess is most of them were leaving for food, drink, bathroom, or warmth. There was about a 15 mph COLD wind and unless you arrived in decent cold weather gear, you got significantly cold. Many folks were not ready for that.

Then the assertion of “more agitated”. I don’t see it in the video in evidence. Just a bunch of folks standing around talking looking a bit unhappy. Nothing much, really, happening at all. I can see one guy in ‘mostly black’ with a bit of green looking like maybe he’s trying to get attention. I’d peg him as an Antifa Agitator trying to drum up excitement and failing.

We do get a nice time stamp that whatever is happening, it is well before Trump is done talking to all of us Real Trump Supporters down at the Ellipse.

Then more “slander by association”:

Around this time, a pipe bomb is reported at the Republican National Committee building, just a block away from the Capitol. Not long after, another device is discovered nearby at the Democratic National Committee headquarters.

So, WELL BEFORE Trump spoke, someone UNKNOWN planned, constructed, and placed some “pipe bombs”. OK, so what does this have to do with Trump? NOTHING.

The list of what is not known is immense here. WHO did it? WHY? WHEN? Was it an anarchist targeting BOTH parties? An Antifa / BLM False Flag operative (We now have proof they were active in the False Flag events – photos identified, arrests made…)? Were the devices ACTIVE and ARMED? Or just ‘for show’ and to be ‘discovered’ by on side police? “The first casualty” is always the truth. We don’t KNOW the truth. AND neither does the NYT. But they choose to frame this as somehow Trump related.

Just how is planting pipe bombs “cheering on” Senators? Eh?

But the good bit is we now have hard evidence there was no way in hell Trump “instigated” this as he was not anywhere near done speaking at this point AND whoever did it was busy making the stuff days before Trump took the stage.

12:53 p.m.–1:03 p.m.
First Barriers Breached
Trump continues speaking.

Rioters topple a fence to the Capitol’s west.

Congress begins joint session.

Again a nice (no doubt accidental) bit of evidence that Trump was still speaking away and most all of the real Trump Supporters were anchored 1.8 miles away (modulo those looking for bathrooms, warmth, lunch or just leaving).

Interesting side bar:

Note that the “rioters” toppling the fence were almost entirely dressed in black, as Antifa does… No Trump Gear visible. Perhaps another bit of “accidental truth” from the NYT?

About 20 minutes before Trump’s speech ends, some people in the Capitol crowd harass officers posted at the barricades and start to get physical. Others follow suit, until they violently overwhelm the police and breach the building’s outer perimeter.

12:53 p.m. Northwest side of the Capitol

Again some “accidental truth” that Trump was still speaking and thus could not be instigating something that happened before he was done. Folks 1.8 miles away were not hearing him.

Then the “violently overwhelm” is a bit much. In some cases the police opened doors for the folks invading the building. Also of note: LARGE areas of fence had no police anywhere near it. IMHO any group choosing to confront an area with police was doing it for the photo op.

Again I note that the general makeup of the folks “breaching” looks a whole lot more like Antifa than Trump Supporters. LOTS of black and dark clothes. Young crowd. Highly emotional. Look at the photos of Trump crowds. Lots of older folks. Lots of colored clothing. No hats on backwards. Emotionally subdued or emotionally having a great time.

Doesn’t add up that these particular people are being called Trump Supporters. Only Trump gear I see is what looks like a brand new MAGA hat (being sold all over the place there by street vendors for $10 or sometimes 2 for $10 trying to clear out inventory).

The next photo / video down also shows a lot of folks in black and dark clothing ‘on the steps’ but not the Typical Trump Gear nor look of the people. There are some flags in the distance, but can’t tell who’s holding them.

At this time, the speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, begins the proceedings to certify the Electoral College vote at a joint session of Congress, alongside Vice President Mike Pence.

Outside, the chants begin: “Whose house? Our house!”

That chant is just so lame. A direct lift of “Who’s Street? Our Street!” classical Antifa mode. When I arrived at the front of the Capitol building some long time later (when Trump FINALLY stopped his long winded speech…) there was one dodgy guy trying to get the real Trump Supporters to take up that chant. NOBODY was joining in and he was not getting any traction. My impression of him was “Nut bar, not a Trump person”.

Meanwhile, 1.8 miles away, where Trump and all his real supporters are located:

1:12 p.m.–2:00 p.m.
Trump’s Call to Action

Trump again calls for a march on the Capitol.

Um, no. Just no. Trump used the word “march” once. And that was way back at the 18 minute mark:

Donald Trump: (18:16)
We have come to demand that Congress do the right thing and only count the electors who have been lawfully slated, lawfully slated. I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard. Today we will see whether Republicans stand strong for integrity of our elections, but whether or not they stand strong for our country, our country. Our country has been under siege for a long time, far longer than this four-year period. We’ve set it on a much straighter course, a much … I thought four more years. I thought it would be easy. We created-

Note again the context. Peacefully.

What was going on nearer the end?

Donald Trump: (01:12:43)
So we’re going to, we’re going to walk down Pennsylvania Avenue, I love Pennsylvania Avenue, and we’re going to the Capitol and we’re going to try and give… The Democrats are hopeless. They’re never voting for anything, not even one vote. But we’re going to try and give our Republicans, the weak ones, because the strong ones don’t need any of our help, we’re going to try and give them the kind of pride and boldness that they need to take back our country.

Donald Trump: (01:13:19)
So let’s walk down Pennsylvania Avenue. I want to thank you all. God bless you and God bless America. Thank you all for being here, this is incredible. Thank you very much. Thank you.

Hardly a giant “Call To Action” for riot and mayhem (that was already in progress thanks to a Leftist False Flag effort). Just WALK down Pennsylvania avenue and an attempt to encourage Congress to do the right thing.

Which is exactly what folks then did. It took about another hour to get there, as it took time for the crowd at the edges to clear and to walk the almost 2 miles.

Trump ended up not walking with us. No doubt being informed of Troubles at the Capitol Building when he left the stage.

As Mr. Trump’s speech comes to an end, he calls on his supporters to “walk down Pennsylvania Avenue” toward the Capitol. Rioters there continue to violently clash with officers, including reinforcements from the local police department who have arrived on the scene. Both sides spray chemical agents.

But again we have a nice “accidental evidence” that this wasn’t Trump Supporters nor at his urging. It was ALREADY GOING ON when he finally ended his speech. Also, it is another video with mostly young folks dressed in the Antifa like Black colors (a few brown or green, but a minority). Not at all like the folks walking down the avenue in the prior video. Not “Trump Folks” at all, in my opinion.

As this is already way too long, I’ll not bother with most of the rest of their chronical of what all was going on by this small band of, most likely, False Flag Antifa and BLM along with a few Useful Idiots while all the rest of us Real Trump Supporters were slowly making our way back up the Avenue.

By the time I got there, this was mostly in the “talking around” phase with the ‘action’ moved inside. I’ve pointed out before we stopped at the car for a drink & snack and heard on the radio that one wing was evacuated and the other ready for it before we could even get to the Capitol Building after Trump’s speech.

We did a quick turn in front of the steps area, took the photos I posted, and like almost everyone else from the Trump Rally, promptly left. Something about 8 hours standing in the cold without food, minimal hydration, in a cold stiff wind, and with no back support…

Painting that as some kind of Trump Inspired Mob Attack is just Click Bait Jurno-Porn.

Just what I’d expect from the NYT.

There is one nice photo at the bottom showing all the Real Trump Supporters arriving LONG AFTER the rioters and False Flag folks have ‘done the deed’. I think I can even see our car in the staff parking lot! So likely I was sitting in it having some crackers and water when this was taken.

Note that the general color of the crowd is far more colorful than the rioters… an indication of different “gang colors” at a minimum…

Now, in reply to my long, detailed, careful analysis of his proffered link, I got this terse insult that’s been in Moderation Jail for a few days as I tried to make up my mind. Sand, or “Do unto the Left Banners what the Left Banners do unto Conservatives” and be the mirror:

3 days ago

The Non-Incitement & The Instigators
Before you blame the Capitol riot on Antifa or BLM, try checking out the arrest reports. I see a lot of Trump supporters and MAGA fans. Have there been arrests of provocateurs? Out of hundreds, how many? Try not to jump to conclusions without adequate evidence. You sound like a propogandist!

So yet more sniditude. As usual, ignores all the evidence and reasoning. Goes for the orthogonal hit line, then the insult.

Is it really worth it?

The whole POINT of Agent Provocateurs is to have a few leverage a crowd of many into something they otherwise were not going to do. Was that lost on Serioso? Is he really that DUMB?

I don’t think so. I think he’s just a malicious games player who likes to go for the dirt and insult. We’ve been at this a few years now, so I think I have a handle on the persona and the method.

Up To You

Vote if you want. Don’t vote if you don’t want. I’ll leave voting open for a day or two (or maybe three, depending).

Then I’ll decide what to do.

A major “vote off the island”, he goes to SPAM filter.
A major “sand to pearls”, he stays in Moderation Jail until I see fewer insults, then gets out.
Nearly balanced? I’ll ‘flip a coin’ or ponder “what do I want” more and “just do it”.

So pencils up.

The voting begins NOW.

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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92 Responses to Carping Comments: Pearl Sand or Voted Off The Island?

  1. wyzelli says:

    I don’t find anything that particular user posts to be of any value other than in hearing an alternative worldview – and I can get that anywhere.

    I am also in mind of the phrase, variously attributed to George Bernard Shaw: “I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig. You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it.”

    Having posted extensively on your view of the events, you now find that all you do now is defend some other avenue of diatribe, to no apparent effect.

    I agree with your dilemma, but really cannot see any value that this individual brings to the conversation.

    Your blog, your platform, your rules! I am not of the view to hastily ban, but in an online environment, it is one of the few effective tools, and you have been more than patient IMHO.

  2. p.g.sharrow says:

    I have never read any positive Serioso contribution to the discussion, so I can see no value added here….pg

  3. YMMV says:

    “being challenged with bits of sand in the gills can lead to pearl construction.”

    Yes, but I don’t think oysters have gills.

    The limits to free speech is a hot topic right now. I saw this headline:
    “Silicon Valley CEOs can’t decide laws and rules, EU Commission president says”
    and thought, now the EU agrees that Twitter and the other twits have abused their privilege and need to be reigned in. BUT NO, She says they are not being restrictive ENOUGH and that regulation must be imposed on social media sites to “ensure that hate & fake news can no longer spread unchecked.” You don’t have to read between the lines to know what they think “hate” is. The EU, including Germany should know better.

    As for Serioso, his comments have zero value added. On the other hand, they do inspire some good responses sometimes. The other other hand, is that they do impose an additional burden on our host and moderator. In a civilized society, we can have discussions with audiences. In a civil-disobedience society, those audiences can disrupt the proceedings, even to the point of cancelling talks. That is where I draw the line. Input welcome, but not to the point of disruption. You could leave him in moderation and only approve the bits and pieces that you comment on.

    For example, your text about how it really was, compared to NYT, is good. Because NYT is not going to say that. Someone should. For history’s sake at least.

  4. gallopingcamel says:

    I participate in blogs that feature trolls like “Serioso” and “David Appell”.

    I find these people are valuable as long as they keep a civil tongue in their heads. Once they start name calling and making “Ad Hominem” give them fair warning and if they don’t improve their behavior ban them.

    Why do I see them as valuable? They help “Our Side” organize our arguments. Sometimes we may find ourselves agreeing with them but most of the time we will be explaining why we disagree.

    Let me illustrate what I am saying with respect to a couple of trolls who published dangerous nonsense back in 1848. Here is a summary of the “Communist Manifesto”:
    The proletariat will use its political supremacy to wrest, by degree, all capital from the bourgeoisie, to centralize all instruments of production in the hands of the state, i.e., of the proletariat organized as the ruling class; and to increase the total productive forces as rapidly as possible.

    Of course, in the beginning, this cannot be effected except by means of despotic inroads on the rights of property, and on the conditions of bourgeois production; by means of measures, therefore, which appear economically insufficient and untenable, but which, in the course of the movement, outstrip themselves, necessitate further inroads upon the old social order, and are unavoidable as a means of entirely revolutionizing the mode of production.

    These measures will, of course, be different in different countries.
    Nevertheless, in most advanced countries, the following will be pretty generally applicable.
    1. Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes.
    2. A heavy progressive or graduated income tax.
    3. Abolition of all rights of inheritance.
    4. Confiscation of the property of all emigrants and rebels.
    5. Centralization of credit in the banks of the state, by means of a national bank with state capital and an exclusive monopoly.
    6. Centralization of the means of communication and transport in the hands of the state.
    7. Extension of factories and instruments of production owned by the state; the bringing into cultivation of waste lands, and the improvement of the soil generally in accordance with a common plan.
    8. Equal obligation of all to work. Establishment of industrial armies, especially for agriculture.
    9. Combination of agriculture with manufacturing industries; gradual abolition of all the distinction between town and country by a more equable distribution of the populace over the country.
    10. Free education for all children in public schools. Abolition of children’s factory labor in its present form. Combination of education with industrial production, etc.
    Karl Marx and Frederick Engels, 1848

    This is a document that is mostly harmful given that many people implemented it at the cost of at least 200 million lives. That huge loss of life merely refers to people killed by their own governments in Russia, China, Cambodia, North Korea, Cuba and dozens of other countries. In addition there have been many millions of unnecessary deaths in wars involving Communist regimes but we can’t hold them fully accountable since wars require at least two parties.

    In spite of all the mayhem, the Communist Manifesto contains some things that I like:

    THE GOOD BITS IN THE COMMUNIST MANIFESTO (Sadly there is not much!)
    “….the proletariat organized as the ruling class;
    8. Equal obligation of all to work.
    10. Free education for all children in public schools. Abolition of children’s factory labor in its present form.

    If Marx & Engels were alive today I would hope that Chiefio would allow them to remain subject to good behavior.

  5. E.M.Smith says:

    Yes, harvesting nits…

    The gills : play a crucial role in respiration as well as feeding. Cilia present on the gills generate water currents to transport the food particles the oyster feeds on. The oyster feeds on plankton (phytoplankton and zooplankton), small organisms transported in the currents.

    Hey, if I’m not to bias the voting, I can only comment on the minutia until it’s over ;-)

  6. Richard Hill says:

    Dear EM.,
    I love your blog. To have driven 1000s of miles to give us a real update on the 6 Jan events is a wonderful gift to the rest of us. About banning commenters. Personally I believe in free speech but not anonymity. Perhaps most social media problems could be avoided if every post was labelled with the full name and address of the poster. Let serioser post if he/she/it provides full name and address, at least to the moderator even if redacted to the viewer.
    Richard Hill

  7. YMMV says:

    Oysters do have gills! Who knew?
    Like fish, oysters have 4 layers of gills, although unlike fish oysters don’t use their gills for breathing but for eating. The gills bring in algae particles, tiny plants that are out in the water, these particles then stick to the gills.

  8. YMMV says:

    “free speech but not anonymity”

    I know the argument for and against, but I suggest that this idea is right next to voting without the anonymity.
    My opinion is that an argument should be able to stand on its own, without being prejudged as from an authoritative source or not. But slander and insults need not apply.

  9. rhoda klapp says:


  10. A C Osborn says:

    Personally I don’t think it will be a problem.
    Trump is gone, probably serioso will be as well, as he will have no target.

    If he remains then I would suggest the allowance of 1 mass media referencing comment as long as it is relevant, but no repitition.

  11. beththeserf says:

    Your salon, your rules of free speech engagement, eg no thread bombing, no ad homs.
    We on the right support free speech unlike Twitter, so I’d not completely ban him,.just insist he plays to non-fiat rules of engagement.

  12. another ian says:


    Your blog, your rules. I haven’t seen any that cause me “considerations” so far.

    And FYI “I think it was (Lord) Asquith who said … that a prime minister must be a good butcher. ” (Borrowed from an online headline in The Australian newspaper behind the Murdoch wall .to me Also mentioned in Churchill’s :Great Contemporaries)

    Might be useful for blog owners too.

  13. H.R. says:

    Just looking in through the kitchen window:

    Either Serioso is naïve or he is not. Serioso might well fit the Mamet Principle, which says that in order to maintain a progressive (liberal/marxist/left/commie/etc.) viewpoint, one must pretend not to know a lot of things. Then there’s always Gell-Mann Amnesia.

    But it has always seemed to me that Serioso posts just to waste your time, E.M.. Serioso posts 2 or 3 or 4 sentences and gets sometime well more than 1,000 words in reply from point-by-point rebuttals from E.M. and any others that care to rebut… whose replies Serioso generally ignores as Serioso seems only concerned with long replies from E.M.

    I’m for polite – maybe a little heated or pointed, just a little – complete disagreements between or among people. I don’t like censoring by banning someone. But censoring with [snips] the violations of a blog owner’s policies and having a poster who can’t seem to ever learn to play nice always go through moderation is just fine by me.

    So I vote Serioso stays, but comments go to moderation, and instead of long, time-wasting replies, just [snipping] the things that are insults or known propaganda and then let Serioso’s post.

    Serioso: “blah, blah, blah with Link-To-NYT. Oh and gratuitous insult to host or all of the readers here.”

    E.M. Allows
    “Blah, blah, blah {snip! Propaganda. Please resubmit with more objective source} and {snip! Insult to the person}.

    So Serioso’s opinion is heard, and Serioso is also given the opportunity to resubmit with better links and without the insult.

    Stays: but take my advice and quit wasting time on Serioso.

    BTW, you might want to [snip] a few bits and bobs of us regulars here when we get out of hand. We can be a little heated at times, but mostly we behave. I know I’ve deserved a couple of snips over the years that you’ve let slide. Not many, but I’ve slipped a couple of times.

  14. Steven Fraser says:

    @EM: I’m not for sequestering Serioso… seems too reminiscent of ‘cancel’ culture, which is anathema to me.

    That said, you could change the rules for everyone with respect to content, something along the lines of the ratio of original content to linked content, or that debate points of fact (and opinions) be provided in text original to the user, and not simply a link to a source. After all, in a written dialogue debate, a link is an appeal to authority, unless positioned as supplemental material.

    In the ‘back and forth’ quoted above It seemed to me that his post was just laziness, and you were debating the NYT’s timeline accuracy, or better stated, pointing out how that it had all sorts of factual distortion and spin on it. I found that part useful, as you destroyed the NYT bs handily. Kudos to you. I think the core of what you wrote would make a great letter to the Editor.

    And, of course, there is the maxim:

    Don’t feed the trolls.

  15. CoRev says:

    EM, having been banned from several lib-blogs, I still recommend the sand in gill option. Letting them make fools of themselves is the best option.

  16. Simon Derricutt says:

    EM – since I’ve found your replies to Serioso very instructive, and it tries to put forward the woke PC line of thinking, I would suggest it’s good to continue as-is. On moderation, not whitelisted. I do recognise that that’s more work, though, so there are also other considerations. That viewpoint is after all easily found on main media and the only advantage of the Serioso comments is that it concentrates on the few points considered most important today.

    Whereas it takes me a significant time to type, I recognise that you can type faster than you can talk. Thus the large responses that demolish the newspeak point-of-the-day don’t consume a lot of your time. There is also the advantage of the writing-out of a response which I have found highlights a few things I hadn’t expressed and thus hadn’t debugged. There is a difference between the intuitive rejection of a proposition and the formal delineation of the logical reasons for that dismissal.

    There is always the chance that it will bring up a valid point. There is also the obvious whack-a-mole effect, since removing this instance will simply activate another one or more, where you won’t initially know the intentions. Such a new instance may start with anodyne comments until whitelisted, and then get more of the meme-du-jour points into the comments. You need to figure on AI improving over time.

    Similar maybe for BillinOz, who I think does not regard himself as a troll, but has been four-walled by the misinformation so long he believes he’s telling the truth to people who have been misguided. The majority of my family and friends would agree with him. I wonder how they could miss the election fraud, with all the bellwether states voting for Trump and going against the official result for the first time, but they fully accept that the counts were honest. They also worry about AGW, of course, and “zero Carbon pollution”, and all the stuff the BBC says they should be concerned about.

    A few trolls over at Jo Nova’s blog garner a massive number of replies. Don’t feed the trolls is a reasonable idea that human nature ignores – faced with some idiocy we want to contradict it. Still, maybe better than being an echo-chamber.

  17. rogercaiazza says:

    I would keep on the island except that means you have to moderate his comments and that means more work for you. So I abstain because it is your party and your rules apply.

  18. Pinroot says:

    I feel like if someone comes here in good faith and says something that everyone else disagrees with, that’s one thing. You get some back and forth and sometimes both sides learn something. However, I don’t think Serioso (and BillInOz) come here in good faith. They seem more like they’re here to troll, and ignore any response that doesn’t fit their world-view. I’m not big on banning (I’ve been banned from a few sites for what I considered minor infractions, sometimes with no warnings). It’s a little too close to ‘cancel culture’ for me. I would just leave him in moderation where possible. And since everybody knows he’s just basically here to troll, if everyone just follows the ‘don’t feed the trolls’ advice, he’ll get bored and leave on his own. Just my 2¢.

  19. Qssqss says:

    I have no issues with any posts I may disagree with as long as there are no insults involved which spur similar responses. I would venture to say the blogger in question is driven by a deep rooted blinding agenda or compensation from such via scripted distributions. IIRC, the IP comes from a university node, so it may be both. Albeit, the monotony of some becomes tiresome.

    That said, if you can ban the coming tax increases, $6 gas, and massive re-regulation it would be appreciated. ;-)

  20. David A says:

    E.M. of course it is your decision, yet I wish to add, that as long as you are willing to give very good detailed answers to such poorly articulated expressions, I find it very useful.

    However that is a lot of detailed work. One of a trolls greatest weapons is to make a broad statement that requires far more energy to smack down.

    This is why I tried to force Billinoz to answer direct questions, which you then reinforced in spades. ( He avoided answering even one of my questions. I guess asking simple direct questions meant I was a bully.)

    If you are willing to simply edit the adhoms, and only print the substance, ( a few times, and on occassion it may mean only printing a small portion of the post) it may help illustrate to the poor bloke how to communicate?

    (-; it all good…

  21. David A says:

    I think that the demand to answer certain questions, as applied to billinoz, has not yet been tried on this particular spark of the Divine.

    Perhaps telling him that before he gets another post, he must articulate his thoughts on your assertions, all of them!
    And the Willis advice -demand, quote me if you disagree is effective.

    Like Billinoz, this requirement, plus answer these questions, will likely cause the person to melt away.

  22. cdquarles says:

    As said, you have the final word; given that you are our most gracious host. If my own were active and folk who add nothing to the conversation but a viewpoint that is already saturating the space and is being nothing but a pain in the process, I’d boot said person as a troll. I’d give said person an opportunity to repent and act better, too. So, said booting would take time and would be for violating the house rules and/or bad behavior; not viewpoint as such. So, for now, maybe just moderate him by snipping. Spam-hole thread bombing, though.

    I agree with David A. Put him in moderation and make him reply to you with clearly delineated premises, agreement on definitions (semantics!), and use sound logic to apply your inductions and deductions. Snip out distractions to the best of your ability.

  23. Power Grab says:

    In general, I don’t like “vote-off-the-island” approaches to things. However, I also reserve the right to absolutely ignore timewasters whose only purpose appears to be to tear down what hard-working, diligent people do.

    I know some people who refuse to click through to a link that is the only thing in the body of an email. Even if it comes from someone they supposedly to have a relationship with, if the sender cannot use their own words to describe what the link is about and why the recipient should spend time going to the link, they are likely to just either delete it or stuff it in a folder that they *might* look at again later.

    OTOH, EM, your valuable reply from the point of view of someone who was there puts it in the class of Keepers (worth of being printed, saved, and shared).

    Finally, every time I see “Serioso” on this page, I think of Plankton on the Spongebob cartoon.

  24. YMMV says:

    “I believe in letting every polite voice be heard.”

    That is a nice description of freedom of speech. In this new world of filters, banning, cancelling, blacklisting, de-platforming, and consensus and dogma. And hate. It is the only way to go forward. There are a lot of ways to go backwards and we will be experiencing them real soon now.

    Nobody ever said freedom of speech was easy.

    I come to hear opinions and facts different from my own. I already know my own and I do not need popular confirmation. I might even change my opinion. I don’t need an echo chamber. I am willing to share my opinions, but I do not wish to force them on anyone. Take them or leave them, it’s all the same to me.

    I do not believe Serioso comes here in good faith. I suspect he wants to be a PITA.
    On the other hand, he does come here, and there is a faint hope he might learn something.
    As trolls go, I’ve seen worse.
    The oyster has a unique way of putting the gritty annoyance in its own sandbox. We don’t know if the oyster values the pearl, but we do.

    I think a worse problem for commenters and readers of comments on blogs is that the sheer number of no value comments can make the valuable comments inaccessible. Case in point: WUWT. There are excellent commenters and comments there, but there are so many worthless comments now that I can hardly read the comments.

    Sometimes an aggregator service is needed. Commenters here give links. I thank them for bringing interesting things to my attention, because I cannot read every news site and every blog. (And I don’t intend to read NYT, so Serioso’s links are not helpful.)

    The news used to be helpful in talking about important things that happened. They used to print long long articles with lots of details. Now that everything is video, we just get short soundbites (and endless talking heads). Blogs such as this one are now the most important services. Until they get banned and cancelled because they go against the dogma. Keep on truckin’!

    The last point in this rant is how the little people can get their voice heard to those who need to hear it. It doesn’t matter if you are Steve Jobs or Donald Trump or Jeff Bezos or Alec Baldwin, you only give your cell phone number to other A-listers. Everybody else gets filtered. “Go away, kid, don’t bother me.” Write your representative a nice letter or e-mail and get back a nice form letter.

    Anybody who has ever been in a meeting or conducted one knows that there has to be rules.
    San Francisco in the mid-to-late 19th century was a chaotic place, with people of many nationalities and traditions thrown together. Meetings of any kind tended to be tumultuous, with little consistency of procedure.
    hmmm, still is.

  25. Tonyb says:

    I have no idea at all who serioso is.

    . I am troubled when people are canceled however. Was the person rude or abusive? Is the person deliberately trying to mislead or do they genuinely believe the evidence supports them?

    Voltaire did not actually say ‘ I disagree with what you write but will defend to the death your right to say it’ it is a volatrian type quote however as this link shows

    What Voltaire actually said is right at the bottom of the link and is more nuanced than his alleged quote.

    A defined period in Moderation jail is surely sufficient, unless I have missed a lot of background, otherwise you risk becoming part of the illiberal mindset that believes the only correct opinion is the one they hold. Be magaminous with a slap over the wrist and perhaps serioso might learn a valuable lesson of toleration


  26. Serioso says:

    I would like to stay. I do not see the necessity for Mr. Smith to reply at such enormous length, but that’s his choice.

    [Reply: So doesn’t like facts and data in excess. Wants things tailored Just So and wants evidence counter to his POV redacted. -E.M.Smith]

    Let me say a few things in my own defense. First, the reason I posted the link yo the NYT so many times is that my post kept disappearing. That is a side effect of being “in moderation” for a long time; I didn’t know that and thought my post had gotten lost. So I posted the same thing several times. I’m sorry that happened.

    [Reply: As is often the case, clearly was not following the thread nor reading my comments where I specifically said they were being held in moderation. Failure to read on your part is not an encumbrance on me to do anything about it. -E.M.S.]

    Secord, let’s analyze my last post:

    “The Non-Incitement & The Instigators
    Before you blame the Capitol riot on Antifa or BLM, try checking out the arrest reports. I see a lot of Trump supporters and MAGA fans. Have there been arrests of provocateurs? Out of hundreds, how many? Try not to jump to conclusions without adequate evidence. You sound like a propogandist!”

    [Reply: Ignores how Agent Provocateurs work. Of Course some folks who are or at least appear to be Trump supporters will be arrested if they are encouraged into the building by Antifa / BLM folks in disguise. Apparently never bothered to look at the linked video, of the work by Andy Ngô documenting them at Antifa rallies. THEN a false assertion that I’m lacking ‘evidence’ because he never bothered to look at it. IGNORES that I was THERE and OBSERVED what I assesed to be Antifa and other Agent Provocateurs. (Also has trouble with his spelling…) -E.M.S.]

    The only insult in that short statement is the word “propagandist.” And of course I accuse you of jumping to conclusions. I believe both statements are true. Would prefacing them with IMHO help? Don’t you think it would be a good idea to monitor the arrest records of the rioters? Yes, it only takes a few provocateurs to incite a crowd (if they are willing to be incited), but who are they? Do we know the names? How many? It’s one thing to blame the riot on provocateurs, but what about the confederate flags, the wanton destruction, the beatings, the weapons? Were they incited? I don’t think we have enough evidence to say for sure. Antifa? BLM? White racists seem a more likely source of incitement. We saw them on TV. We heard what they had to say. Where’s your evidence for BLM?

    [Reply: Then here it comes. The demand for ME to do his homework for him. Sorry Charley, the Teacher does not do the homework for the Student. Also, we get the “Usual Litany” of mindless accusations at anyone non-hard-left. Confederate Flags. White Racists. Yeah, right.
    All Left Dog Whistles At The Ready!!! Motivation can ever be seen in a photo. You can see a confederate flag, and frankly THAT is not offensive except to folks indoctrinated into hate-think. For most all of my life, it was just a bit of respect for the Battle Flag of a beaten opponent. Only after intensive “Hate Speech Indoctrination” did it become anything more.

    Then absurdity of absurdities “we saw it on TV”. TV News “Creates a narrative and story” just like all other news. I’ve BEEN THE NEWS several times over the decades. EVERY TIME, the “story” was different from reality. Sometimes close, often far from it.

    There are whole books written on how to do film work so as to bend the narrative. It also fully IGNORES that when someone is doing a False Flag they put on the uniform of the “other” precisely so it “looks like” the other did it. So is this stupidity, or just “lie for effect” and demand another big chunk of my time to “do his homework” for him?

    Most all the time, Serioso, you do NOT present information yourself. You do no homework. It is either ‘appeal to authority’ via NYT and related links, or it is “ask questions while asserting the other must deal with it”. Then you complain when your questions are answered and ignore it as it is “too long” to bother reading. You can stay, just not be part of the conversation since you don’t engage in conversation anyway. Just Trollish behaviours.. -E.M.S.]

  27. E.M.Smith says:


    “Serioso” has been a pet Troll here for several (many?) years, and started out under another name. His initial style was very hostile and insult rich.

    I’ve spent many years insisting on polite insult free discourse. The lesson only sticks for a little while, if that. Weeks to days. Sometimes hours. I have succeeded in getting him to damp the worst vitriol.

    He has been “in moderation” a few dozen times (or at least it feels like a few dozen, many more than 2 in any case). I’ve had years of “snip the worst and insults out”, so that strategy has already been tried.

    Learning is not in evidence.

    He manifests a LOT of the usual Troll Flag Behaviours. Terse vague points designed to consume time and irritate. Insults (from mild to strong depending on what can be gotten away with), and snark / sniditude a dominant style choice. IGNORE any counter point made by a responder, and either double-down on “go waste time on this link” and “restate the already shown wrong” points; or put up an orthogonal point and just ignore the conversation that showed the prior point was garbage.

    (Yes, I’m pretty sure I have the information / experience base to both program a Troll Bot and a Counter Troll Style AI ;-) I’ve been at this internet thing for a few decades.)

    I’m going to start stating my opinion here even though it might bias things:

    IMHO, the only benefit I ever get from Serioso is that sometimes I like the content of my responses to his crap. Like that NYT analysis above. I’d not have seen the NYT hit piece, so not have known how bad it was, nor illustrated it for others. That is a benefit from my POV. OTOH, what would I have been able to do with the couple of hours it took to deal with his link (several copies as he was slow to catch on that he was once again in Moderation Jail… you’d think after all the other times he’d have clue by now…) ? What was the alternative? We will never know.

    So from my POV, the suggestions to ~”try moderation and snips” is just saying to “try what you have tried for several years with him, and has not shown much efficacy.”

    And, IF I really wanted to spend time illustrating the crap from the NYT, I could always just go read the NYT myself. I’m sure I’d find something in every episode… So what’s the “value add” of having someone shove that at me against my essential desires, and stimulate a response that I’d rather be using elsewhere? Eh? All I can see is perhaps overcoming some sloth or reticence on my part about NYT visits. Is that worth it? Doesn’t feel like it.

    While I’ve quasi-enjoyed some of the ‘fencing’ attitude of ‘verbal combat’, in reality, I’m just not that ‘into’ discord and tussle. I’m more a coffee shop discussion type. I find the “jousts” just tiresome and a distraction.

    Add to that the point that we are now in a Brave New World (Order), and I’m also not seeing any benefit to following the political follies for the next few years. I started this blog as my Tech Notebook for things computer and climate. I only wandered into the Political Food Fight as our nation was under attack and Trump was the only chance at a halt to it. Well, that has ended now. The Swamp Creatures are in full control of the Voting Apparatus, so no such contender will ever ‘make it’ again. The only options I see are:

    1) Attack The Swamp.
    2) Moan over the lack of Trump.
    3) Toss Rocks at Biden & Co.
    4) Ignore it all and do what I want.
    5) Note in passing key interesting bits, otherwise, move on.

    I see no upside to #1. Suicide missions are not my forte. I’m also sure more than enough other folks will “go there”.

    I see no benefit to #2. He had his shot, and fumbled in the end zone. Our Lion was too meek when he had the power to finish it.

    What’s the point with #3? Others will do LOTS of that, but Biden & Co. will ignore it as nobody matters anymore. They run the vote generating machinery, so can just ignore the rock tossers (or more likely put them in re-education camps.)

    Then #4 is attractive. I really have no innate interest in politics. I’d be happier just playing with computer bits and doing tech stuff. Yet it feels a lot like “head in sand”.

    Which leaves me at #5. Essentially, doing #4, but with occasional “awareness” news postings. A bit of “scan of headlines for what’s interesting” (like all the governments in Europe who are currently having replacement cycles…) while mostly just doing “what I do” in tech talk land.

    I’m leaning mostly toward #5.

    Then again, comments on the Open Threads center on political stuff, and so far the Tech Talk postings this week have shown zero interest from commenters. So there’s that. OTOH, I don’t run this blog for money nor fame. It’s just a little backwater place where I could, in reasonable peace, keep notes on the world and what interests me. I’m not in the “clicks & eyeballs” business, so why worry about their metrics?

    In the context of a #4 or #5, Serioso has no role to play. He only pops up on things Political that paint the Swamp in a bad light. (IMHO, he’s most likely employed in The Swamp with either a major gig or minor hobby of Swamp Whitewashing). So why worry about his potential to initiate interesting responses on topics that are going to fad away from the center of activity? Eh?

    Well, hopefully that ‘background’ is helpful to folks who haven’t followed all the comments in all the threads for over a half decade (or maybe a whole one… I no longer remember a time without Serioso or his prior alter-ego…)

  28. Tonyb says:

    Half a decade? I first remember using some of your work in an article of mine back in 2009 . that was good. It came from this.

    Are you like me and say to people ‘it must be three years since I saw you’ and they say, ‘ no it’s more like 10 ‘ which makes you feel very old and you come to realise time slips away quickly.

    So Why not just do as you like wth the blog and Keep to subjects that interest you? Becausec as you say the intense level of politics is going to fade away anyway and why waste time on those that cause you aggro when you can be busy in your online workshop doing things that interest you? If and When the time comes to take your’ head out of the sand’, as your epic trip showed, you will rise to the challenge

    My best regards


  29. philjourdan says:

    As you say, your blog, your decision. But I offer some comments and insights.

    #1 – to AC Osborne, unfortunately no, he will not get better or even less frequent if he stays. I have seen a marked increase in trolling remarks on other sites since the election was stolen. In addition to emboldening the democrats to steal more, it has emboldened the left trolls to troll more. It will not decrease. Has the Antifa/BLM violence lessened? It did for a few days before the election, but now is back in full force.

    #2 – As YMMV first pointed out, and many chimed in with the same sentiment, Serioso provides zero content, and like YMMV, I have stopped reading him (although I love reading your responses). His comments are designed for that purpose alone – to get responses. And that is why they provide zero content.

    But as to the decision, an analogy. I often school my liberal friends about rights versus privileges. Rights do not impose on others. Period. Ergo why Health care can never be a right. The imposition. Privileges do impose, either significantly or less so, on others, so why they are regulated. You cannot have every hot rodder disobeying speed limits just because they bought the fastest car. The behavior imposes risks on others.

    So while I would vote for moderation, and not removal, I cannot because that imposes on you. Voting off the Island does not impose on you.

    Hence the dilemma. What I do know is that whatever your decision, it will not be hasty or arbitrary. I have learned that much from reading your writing.

    One last thought. While a grain of sand can make a pearl, most that are created that way are inferior to the cultured ones. This grain of sand lacks culture.

  30. E.M.Smith says:


    The half a decade was a conservative estimate of how long one would need to have been reading lots of the comments to know that Serioso has been around a Very Long Time. It was not an estimate of how long I’ve run the blog… I do know that’s about a dozen years. Just not sure when Serioso showed up…

  31. YMMV says:

    “4) Ignore it all and do what I want.”

    My kind of guy. My happiest years were those where I lived under a rock. People remember where they were when X happened. Not me. I don’t because I wasn’t paying any attention. (and not because of the fog of drugs). I think most people would rather just live a nice life and not be bothered. Too bad everyone insists on bothering. If only there was such a safe space …

  32. E.M.Smith says:


    A couple of times I’ve done exactly a #4. I don’t talk about it much because there isn’t much to say. “I spent a couple of months after the last Florida Contract laying by the pool a lot and driving to the beach or fishing”… “I had a 5 year anniversary sabbatical from work and spent 6 weeks largely exploring different German Beer.” I mostly retired and just ran a blog for a few years… oh, wait ;-)

  33. Graeme No.3 says:

    I haven’t bothered reading any comments from serioso for quite a long time so I don’t care whether you ban him or not.

  34. In the past 5 or 6 years I’ve tossed one anti-women comment that began sth like “You baby-killing monster!” As a libertarian activist the sight of Red Terror Jacobin Communists attacking buildings that have stood for centuries is as welcome as the sight of mindless Ku-klux rednecks with green teeth seeking an Army of God militia to bully girls, shoot at doctors and deface birth control clinics. Both displays of dangerous insanity give voters an incentive to cast a highly leveraged, law-changing Libertarian spoiler vote and throw the entire communo-fascist left/right binarist Kleptocracy into factional dogfights every time our spoiler votes exceed the difference between their puppet candidates. It’s your blog and I’d say run it any way you like. Often it is useful to let them speak and “remove all doubt.”

  35. Annie says:

    EMS @ 7.49pm:

    Reading through that, I’d say you have given yourself very good reasons for a complete ban. Do you really need to waste any further time on Serioso?
    Once I realise that someone is behaving like a troll I bother no further with his/her/its comments; life’s too short. :)

  36. E.M.Smith says:


    I like to think that I can help any person to be better. I’m incurably optimistic about much of life.

    But I do feel like my “infinite patience” has perhaps been shown to have a limit case…

    Or maybe it’s just some melancholy after recent events. Whatever…

    FWIW, I’m likely to close voting sometime tomorrow. (Tonight I need to go buy some Australian Wine ;-)

  37. London Calling says:

    (Sorry if I’ve missed this suggestion in an earlier comment – I’ve skimmed them so may have).

    Surely the solution is exponential backoff?

    He can either modify his behaviour or effectively vote himself off the island with ever-longer periods where comments > /dev/null

  38. David Alexander says:

    I’m not a fan of banning – it’s really just doing the same as Twitter and such. Let the dude post, but ignore him.

  39. Terry Jackson says:

    Serioso’s comments are the sort of thing that reinforces or persuades the Left, so some of the value of leaving him is simply exposure to how they think and act. The insults are a key part of it, as it shows them how much better they are than the trash they talk down to and ridicule.

    I would leave him , but not spend much time on him. Sometimes the most effective response is simply ignoring it.

    Best wishes on your decision.

  40. pouncer says:

    Speaking of monomaniacs, whatever happened to OManual the Electric Sun guy? Now HE was polite!

  41. John Robertson says:

    Cannot help you there E.M,your troll and stalker has seldom had anything to contribute,nothing I could not gather from CNN or any of the Propaganda Channels.
    So I stopped reading its comments.
    Your site,your, rules.
    You cannot say you did not give it a fair chance to. Clean up its act.
    However some of your attempts to engage it in conversation were quite enlightening.
    except then I had to read the trolls comment to gain the context.

  42. The True Nolan says:

    Conversation between Serioso and E.M.:
    Serioso: I want a pony.
    E.M.: You had a turtle and didn’t take care of it. Why do you think a pony will be easier?
    Serioso: I want a pony.
    E.M.: Having a pony is a lot of responsibility. (followed by 500 words on the ethics of keeping large animals.
    Serioso: I want a pony.
    E.M.: You have no experience with horses. The cost of stabling a horse is much higher than you might think. (Followed by 1,000 words on the economics of having a horse.)
    Serioso: All the other kids have ponies. I want a pony.
    E.M.: No, all the other kids do NOT have ponies. With the rare exception of kids who live in rural areas, hardly any kids have ponies. (Followed by 1,500 words researching horse distribution on three continents.)
    Serioso: I want a pony. NOW!
    E.M.: Etc. (You get the idea.)

    E.M., I really like the analysis and responses you make to Serioso. It is a pleasure to read cogent, well thought essays. Unfortunately Serioso just wants a pony, metaphorically speaking, and NOTHING you can say will change that. Of course the decision is yours — but life is short, and if it were me, I would boot him.

  43. Nancy & John Hultquist says:

    1. I only read brief comments about the NYT; likewise a number of other MSM outlets. As a person approaches the end-of-time, either climate extinction or just personal age, time becomes exponentially important. Know your enemy is not a good motivation.

    2. Double #1 for ‘Serioso’ – – not worth my time.

  44. H.R. says:

    E.M.: “…and so far the Tech Talk postings this week have shown zero interest from commenters.”

    I read your tech postings, but I’m in kindergarten THERE. Sometimes I’m lost and bewildered, other times I ‘get’ what’s going on, and always I learn about what is floating around. I file that away should I ever need to take an interest, if ya knowwhudda mean, Vern.

    So, as best as I can recall, I have only made a comment or two for all of the tech postings you’ve made. I am not a stupid guy and if the need arises I know I can come here , read back postings, and get a cram course to bring me up to speed. But I can’t really contribute much on your tech postings, so I shut up to minimize any distractions I might cause. But I read them.

    (Now I did comment on the programming languages because I’d forgotten how much I had once learned and knew, and I was helpful in that others filled me in on what has since happened with the stuff I learned and prompted others to also remember a few things that had been in the back of their memory closet. My clunking around on that thread was useful.)

    But aside from the “Techno bits” there’s “and mind pleasers”. Yes, lot’s of politics in the past fascinating 5 years (campaign plus term in office), but we’ve also taken time out for boat building and how far back it could go; other possibilities besides the conventional wisdom of how humans of various sorts got spread about the planet; food and wine; bread making, and lot’s of other stuff.

    I said above that Ii think Serioso should stay and I suggested that you should just moderate Serioso. But it’s your blog, your time, your inclinations, and just my opinion to be considered or rejected by you, and you asked for opinions.
    Part of the reason for me making a second go-round on the thread is to remind you that that Serioso has maybe… maybe… commented once and maybe… maybe commented twice on something not political.

    [Thinking… thinking] Yup, now I’m sure Serioso did, because I remembered being very, very surprised. So as you start getting back to more Techno bits and other mind pleasers, Serioso will self-eliminate from commenting. And any time politics arises in the future, we would have someone we can rely on for the boots on the ground Marxist POV.

  45. YMMV says:

    To clarify my position a bit, the left blocks people because they have wrong-think. That’s bad.
    Us doing the same would not be better.
    Blocking him because he is a PITA, that is a good reason.

    Leaving him in moderation and only letting him through (or bits of what he says) when the mood strikes you, that is okay. I am not suggesting that you waste time editing out the bad and insulting bits. Not fun, not paid, not doing it. He’s had his fair warning.

    @The True Nolan: “Serioso: I want a pony.”


  46. John Andrews says:

    He believes in the NYT, lots of people do. All my sons included. He uses that source to support his opinion. You (and I) see it differently. However, to ban him, even temporarily, prevents me as a reader from seeing his opinion, even if I dislike it. Leave him on and be nice about it. He would like being scolded harshly because it helps him make his point.

  47. gallopingcamel says:

    Serioso is not worthy of your attention. Don’t let him goad you.

    Leave it to your faithful flock to argue with him if he makes any statements that make sense.

  48. Sera says:

    On the one hand, it is hilarious watching someone make a fool of himself. On the other hand, I occasionally make a fool of myself. That doesn’t make us bad people. The whole point of free speech is that the alternative is worse.

    Let him say what he wants- and if you don’t have the time to respond, then ignore him (don’t feed the troll).

  49. A C Osborn says:

    EM, Didn’t you use to do Finance as well as Tech & Climate?

  50. Eric Barnes says:

    I say ban him. I’ve ignored his comments for years and it will make the comments section easier to read. Thanks for the effort maintaining a great blog EM!

  51. H.R. says:

    @A C Osborn re ‘Finance’:

    Heck yeah! Well, stocks and the market and economics and some bits on finance.

    There’s a tab at the top labeled [Racing Stocks] that will give you an idea of E.M.’s interest in how ♯♪♫Money makes the World go ’round, World go round♪♫

    I’d file that under “and other mind pleasers.”

  52. David A says:

    I would have zero problem with any site blocking people because, after repeated warnings, the continued personal insults. Yet consistency is important, as well as going after the initial aggressor, as sometimes it is hard not to respond as a mirror.

  53. p.g.sharrow says:

    The True Nolan says:
    22 January 2021 at 2:24 am “I want a pony ! ! ”
    Is the best description that I have seen. Serioso sounds like a juvenile demanding attention. There was only one short period that there was any attempt to actually engage in a discussion. I would leave it in the spam bucket and dump it with the rest of the trash. …pg

  54. E.M.Smith says:

    Yes, I have an entire methodology for market evaluation.

    Why nothing lately? Two major reasons.

    The first was that with Trump “in” everything was generally “up” and not a lot of timing needed.

    Then the second was when it became clear the Market had stopped really being a market. It is now all essentially managed for effect. Machine trading at very high speed is something like 75% of all market volume. Institutions are almost all the player volume. The space for The Little Guy is as “mark” at the table.

    The market no longer moves in response to a large body of people making decisions. It now moves based on a computer reading an electronic headline at the moment of issuance and placing large, often self fulfilling, trades.

    Mix that with a government printing debt at a rate to make your head spin so your ‘marker’ is of uncertain value, and it’s just kind of too much total risk and not enough real information to make a valid move. We went from something like 4 Trillion of national debt to 25 $Trillion in a flash and last I heard had reached higher than that, something like 28 $Trillion. That’s approaching the value of national real estate…

    Essentially we’re reaching the point where we would have to sell the nation to pay off the debt…

    So at this point I’m about 90% or so in real estate. As it is a long term asset with some inflation protection and not a trade good, not much to say about it.

    The other, other bit, is that my Social Security checks kicked in so I no longer needed to actively trade to get cash flow and could make the move to other asset types.

    So I can do more financial postings, but they will be less useful than in the past. THE major movers will be “What have Biden and the DNC done now?” and that is not predictable, and it will already have been acted upon by the insiders of the DNC and their friends, then the computer traders at the moment of announcement. It’s hard to be a trend follower when the trend is almost over by the time it shows up in the data…

  55. David A says:

    Sheesh, statists ruin everything!

  56. E.M.Smith says:

    Couple of simple examples:

    What will be the future value of oil and coal companies? Depends on what a Biden presidency and DNC Congress chooses.

    What will be the future value of a car maker? Depends on what draconian laws a Biden presidency and DNC Congress passes to hobble them or force making eCars most folks won’t buy ( I intend to keep my fuel cars until I can no longer drive “incentives” be damnd.)

    What will be the future value of Retail Companies? Depends on what draconian Chinese Wuhan Covid mandates and lockdowns are issued and for how long.

    What will be the future value of Movie Theaters? Depends on if they can reopen under DNC rules.

    What will be the future value of shopping Mall Reits? Depends on if they can reopen under DNC rules AND still make some money.

    What will be the future value of Restaurants and Fast Food chains (like KFC / Taco Bell – Yum Brands.)? Depends…

    Then figure in that Soros loves to make money off of shorting things and he’s the moneybags behind a lot of the DNC… So he can take a short position, have the DNC lined up to make damaging edicts, and by the time YOU know, you can sell into the falling short driven market most of the way down…

  57. philjourdan says:

    One other thought – some have mentioned keeping Serioso to see what the other side is thinking. But there is no need to do that. You have the fake news for the official party line,. and if you want to see what the brain dead are thinking, a dip (and I only recommend a dip) into the du dot org pool will gather the necessary information and of course require a thorough cleansing when done.

    They are that nasty. In comparison, Serioso is melba toast.

  58. pouncer says:

    “So at this point I’m about 90% or so in real estate. As it is a long term asset with some inflation
    protection and not a trade good, not much to say about it.”

    You and Bill Gates.

    Interesting that the uber-computer guy is NOT (like Balmer) investing much in the Space Race.

    I’d like to find and buy into a mutual fund that takes the other side of all the “virtuous” trades. A mix of tobacco companies, pipeline companies, nuclear materials processors, mining, REITs accused of “gentrification”, any firm doing business with Israel, or Poland, or Hungary — any firm being pushed out of other managed funds or with depressed stock prices by the noise of the SJW activists.

  59. E.M.Smith says:


    Space Launch is a Big Boys Game. THE major customer is the US Government. So it all comes down to how well your lobbyist does at getting contract influence. Boeing and ULA get the lions share. Musk has made a big inroad (largely, IMHO, by outflanking Boeing who made a major mistake with their waaay overpriced heavy launch alternative) so is a new Big Boy on the block too.

    Everybody else is “also ran” or “wannabe” and largely the plaything of other Rich Big Boys (and their toys…). Branson. Bezos.

    So no really good way for some other Big Boy to make a lot of money in it.

    Land, OTOH, is a great inflation hedge and it can make a lot of money too, IF you own a large chunk of it, and especially if you can influence planning commissions… It might be interesting to see if any of his “farm land” was located just outside major cities intended to be packed with more bodies via Agenda 2030…

    Per “Other Side” funds:

    I’d not go there until the damage is done by Usurper Biden & CO. “The time to buy is when blood is running in the streets” (Rothschild…) so wait for it… We’re still in the coasting out phase of the Trump Boom.

  60. gmmay70 says:

    Land investments are contingent on respect for property rights. Something in which the incoming administration (or general trajectory of our politics) doesn’t exactly inspire confidence.

  61. another ian says:

    E.M. Maybe some background reading for this decision?

    ““People tell me it’s the bad side of me, the trouble maker, the awkward bas**rd, the devil in me coming out to play, all of which are lamentably true and I fret about constantly. But everyone also knows the devil always has the greatest laughs. Look around you if you don’t believe that.”

    Read on at –

  62. another ian says:

    And in that spirit

    “Bumped: OAN reports that Trump has offered NG troops free lodging at his DC hotel.”

  63. Steven Fraser says:

    @EM: You wrote: Land, OTOH, is a great inflation hedge and it can make a lot of money too.

    Sprawling commercial development requires land, and some businesses need that land to be away from cities. Think wind farms and nuclear power as examples, esp the nuclear power part.

    Gates has an interest in alternative energy, and I think he’s positioning some of his wealth in a manner not subject to capital erosion or the vagarities of shifting political winds. Land retains value nicely, and has the feature of being foundational for all sorts of business endeavors, even to secure business loans, build industrial conglomerates, host new universities, construct airports/refuges.

    It interesting to see him make these moves, and those he will make in the coming months/years. I can see where they might lead, in the same fashion that I understand about the ocean-front home he bought last year in SoCal, where it is not nearly so dreary as his palace on Lake Washington.

  64. H.R. says:

    @Steven Fraser : Land… I’ve been thinking about that one. If the Commie PTB want to take your land by force, you are screwed. If they want to take it by stealth, they just tax the snot out of it until you default for non-payment of taxes and then they just take it. All ‘strickly legull’ of course.

  65. Steven Fraser says:

    @EM: Continuing the ‘Gates-Land’ thought and modular nuclear-based business…

    In the not-to-distant future, say, 5-10 years, I think ModNuke manufacturing and deployed facilities (like the one going up in Wash State) will be in development widely for regional and business-specific power needs. Some of those power allocations might be for
    – Atmospheric gas separation and cryogenics, i.e., liquified CO2, Nitrogen, Oxygen and Argon
    – Methane generation from Atmospheric CO2.
    – Hydrogen/Oxygen separation (from water) and cryo.
    – Year-round enclosed food production (greenhouses),
    – Plastics manufacturing

    If you have low-cost energy production, all sorts of things become possible, especially if you can produce the energy safely and close to the locations where it is used.

    Keep in mind, too, that Gates is our age, and he needs to do things that will position his wealth in a manner that can be leveraged by the next generation.

  66. Steven Fraser says:

    @H.R.: While your points are well-taken, I think Bill has enough experience with Governments that he understands those plays and how to negate the risk of them in multiple ways, perhaps some of the same ways that the massively-rich have survived pogroms of those types, He has some time to sense the political and Philosophical winds, and figure that out.

  67. H.R. says:

    @Steven Fraser: Lil’ Billy Gates is one of the PTB with a least a three-legged stool at the Big-Boy’s Table.

    I’m talking about middle class Americans with a few properties, upper middle class with several big properties ( maybe up to a hundred $million or so) and real estate whales, with a billion and up in real estate.

    I could have a couple of $million in income producing properties, and if the PTB and whales want them and me gone, they can do that in a heartbeat. It just doesn’t cost all that much to buy off local politicians.

    So to your point and excellent contribution; Lil’ Billy Gates does not give a rat’s patootie about local governments, the political winds, or the philosophical winds . When Bill Gates breaks wind, people jump. Bill Gates doesn’t read political winds, he breaks political wing 😜

  68. E.M.Smith says:

    OK everybody, Pencils Down! Voting has ended. (You can keep on kibitzing on other things ;-)

    The vote was not Y/N as folks came up with other categories, so here’s my estimate of what folks meant. There’s some amount of interpretation in these groupings and I may have counted some folks twice. I don’t care. It isn’t important enough to audit (see, I’m getting in the Mode Du Congress and our New Overlords already!)

    KEEP 3
    Conditional or Near KEEP 4
    Neutral / No position 4
    Conditional or Near BOOT 6
    BOOT and be done 7

    So I make that about 7 for some kind of “keep”, perhaps with conditions.
    Moderation Jail for life at 12
    Dump the irritant at a total 13

    So 25 are to some degree or other irritated. 7 want ‘keep’ on various ethical grounds. So a ratio of about 7:2

    But “what about me?”

    Well, I think the most salient point is that I no longer see Serioso as a bit of useful sand in the gills. More a PITA that I tolerate rather the same way one tolerates a hat that is too tight or boots the cramp your feet. Useful every so often, but you hope you don’t have that need / use show up any time this year, or next.

    Were *I* interested in doing a critique of the NYT, I could just go read it. But I’m not, as I already know what their editorial spin is. I can’t tilt at all the windmills in the world and I can’t fix all the stuff that’s wrong that gets published. “GASP! Someone is WRONG on the Internet!” is not cause for ME to go “fix it”. And that is what it feels like to me when dealing with Yet Another Petulant Serioso comment.

    I suppose, in short, you could just say “I’m tired of dealing with this shit.” Life is too short to drink bad wine, and Serioso is light vinegary wine.

    So it comes down to 12 for perpetual moderation jail vs 13 for some form of “dump”. Or make that 14 given my general emotional leaning this last year. (Yes, I’ve been contemplating this that long, on and off). IF I kept up perpetual Moderation Jail, I’d still be writing replies. I’m just not interested in being Teacher or Daddy to Serioso when he refuses to listen or learn, or even reply to points made. All he does is take a hard left turn to some other detail point and pushes the crap dump button again.

    An example of this appears up thread and I’ll add a link to it here after this comment is first posted (and I go fish HIS comment out of moderation and decorate it, yet again, with some reply material) here:

    So, what’s my decision on the count?

    In accordance with our new Tech Lords & Masters Rulings, I will “Be The Mirror” and do the ban. The name of Serioso will land a comment in the SPAM bucket. (Others referring to him may get hauled back out of SPAM, we’ll see…)

    We have entered a Brave New World of global CENSORSHIP and refusing to “fight fire with fire” on noble grounds is unlikely to end well. (Nothing is likely to end well, really). So I’m settled on “Do unto others as they do unto you” (or your conservative cohort).

    Oh, and I’ll also be doing a few other bits to hopefully catch any “Serioso Part Deux”, and I’ve got enough years of exposure under my belt to likely spot his “Style” immediately if it pops up under another name. We’ll see how that goes, too.

    With that: “Out Damned Spot!”… (from some commercial decades ago ;-)

  69. H.R. says:

    @Serioso: From The Sound of Music

    ♯♪♫There’s a sad sort of clanging
    From the clock in the hall
    And the bells in the steeple, too
    And up in the nursery
    An absurd little bird
    Is popping out to say coo-coo
    (Coo-coo, coo-coo)

    ♯♪♫Regretfully they tell us (Coo-coo)
    But firmly they compel us (Coo-coo)
    To say goodbye (Coo-coo)
    To you

    ♯♪♫So long, farewell
    Auf Wiedersehen, goodnight
    I hate to go and leave this pretty sight

    ♯♪♫So long, farewell
    Auf Wiedersehen, adieu
    Adieu, adieu
    To you and you and you

    ♯♪♫So long, farewell
    Au revoir, Auf Weidersehen
    I’d like to stay
    And taste my first champagne
    (talking to the captain) yes
    (Captain) no

    ♯♪♫So long, farewell
    Auf Weidersehen, goodbye
    I leave and heave
    A sigh and say goodbye

    ♯♪♫I’m glad to go
    I cannot tell a lie
    I flit, I float
    I fleetly flee, I fly

    ♯♪♫The sun has gone
    To bed and so must I
    So long, farewell
    Auf Weidersehen, goodbye


    You read my vote, Serioso. However, you have been weighed in the balance and found wanting. Soooooooo….


  70. Qssqss says:

    I support what you do EM. IP’s will quickly show desire on the other side of the equation.

    It is your house in the end that gives us our house.

  71. H.R. says:

    @Ossqss – Awesome choice there, matey!

  72. YMMV says:

    “Out Damned Spot!”
    from Shakespeare (Macbeth)
    (and no doubt some commercials)

  73. Steve C says:

    Most of his value here was in E.M.’s long replies. Too often, all there was would be a string of other commenters showing that he was either plain wrong or trying to goad us, a complete waste of time. And if E.M. is getting fed up answering him … ‘bye, Serioso. Read, Mark, Learn and Inwardly Digest the comments here and reflect, and maybe our host will let you back in.

  74. Steve C says:

    Oh, dear, I’ve been moderated now. Was that because I mentioned the Name that Shall Not be Spoken? :-(

    Reply:[ Yes. That’s to prevent ‘variations’. SorryOhSo had swapped from s…95 to s…96 with his last comment in an attempt to bypass moderation, so I just took the common denominator… figuring there’s likely 1-94 as well… ANOTHER Trollish behaviour. -E.M.S. ]

  75. David A says:

    I Fully support your decision. Yet please do not think you are being a mirror here, and I think it is a good thing you are not.

    You are banning someone for all their troll behaviours, which you outline quite well. And I would not object to any blog banning anyone for such repeated behaviours, regardless of my agreement with their perspective.

    I do however object to internet communication platform providers making such decisions.

  76. beththeserf says:

    Your right, your blog.

  77. E.M.Smith says:


    Now that you say that, I get the visual of hand washing in a play many decades ago and recognize having heard it there too. Interesting that the later use (repetitively…) in an old TV commercial was first access of the visual Synesthesia…

    It would appear that the associative stack is either a kind of LIFO or is ‘exposure weighted’ where exposure might be total count or could be intensity of response. Odd how the mind works. (Well, my mind at least is a bit odd…)

    OTOH, Putting the phrase with the Shakespeare or Macbeth marker I have a very vivid visual of what I think is king Macbeth desperately washing hands… but can’t say if that’s the exact visual from when the words happen in the play. From a movie I think, perhaps this one: which, being from 1948, would have reached my backwater farm town about 5 to 8 years later and I’d have seen it at about 3 years old, or a repeat tour some years later. I still hear Orson Wells when i think of the voice of Macbeth…

    Interesting that a multiple key access to the database gets a very different result, but a single key access gets a less important one. Have to work on that (if only I had access to the source code and didn’t have to submit requests to the Help Desk who hand them off to the back room staff I never see ;-)

  78. E.M.Smith says:

    @David A:

    Perhaps just a warpy fun house mirror… 8-)

    BTW, I decorated your comment above with my reply… But a quasi-quote from my “Exit stage left” comment above clarifies:

    The name of Serioso will land a comment in the SPAM bucket. (Others referring to him may get hauled back out of SPAM, we’ll see…)

    In fact, I relented a little and some forms of mention only go to moderation where I’ll rotor them as appropriate…

    @H.R.: You got Synesthesia too? That song kicks off just about any time someone says “So long, fair well” or “Auf Weidersehen, goodbye” or sometimes just double or single words from that set…

  79. philjourdan says:

    Re: Confederate flag.

    In my youth (High School), I got into Vexillology. But not “any” flags. I was in HS in Frankfurt Germany during the height of the cold war. At the only HS in Europe that had a dorm so the kids from diplomats all over Europe could go to an American school. One of those kids lived in Moscow during his non-school time and I got him to get me a Soviet flag. Way cool! But not being satisfied with just one flag of hate, I sought out the Nazi flag, the confederate flag, etc. (the latter was easy to get, the former not so much).

    So I own all 3 now (never got a Communist China flag). They are packed up somewhere in a box since I have long passed childhood. But I do have them, So does that make me a Communist Nazi White Supremacist? Seems so by today’s standards.

    I respect your decision and will abide by the restriction of not mentioning he who shall not be named.

  80. E.M.Smith says:


    Nicely done. One of my favorites too.

  81. YMMV says:

    philjourdan: “I was in HS in Frankfurt Germany during the height of the cold war.”

    Question for you. I was wondering the other day if kids in other countries were taught to crawl under their school desk when the nuclear attack came.

  82. woodsy42 says:

    As someone from the UK who does not comment but sometimes drives by here to pick up honest comment and sensible opinion (thank you!) it occures that you could allow this poster but mark all their posts with a prominent message that ‘This post is disputed’ – or some other stronger message.

  83. E.M.Smith says:


    You left out “Racist Slaver”…

    Yes, in the insanity world of the P.C. Police, investigation or remembrance of a thing is endorsement of all of it. By their rules, someone “like me”, who investigates anything of interest (which is almost everything) that comes along, and then remembers it, is the embodiment of EVERYTHING EVIL they have ever been exposed to.

    Simultaneously a Communist Murderer of Millions and an Alt-Right Racist War Monger Nationalist Supremacist. A Nazi and a Jew Lover Zionist. Simply for having read about history. (My search history would drive them absolutely crazy with rage…)

    Hell, I OWN copies of Mein Kampf, the Communist Manifesto and writings of Marx, the US Constitution and Declaration of Independence, and even a copy of the Magna Carta somewhere… I will be on every possible list. Oh, and not to mention that we have Gone With The Wind in at least 2 formats… VHS & DVD.

    The only possible conclusion they could reach is that I’m insane with every rage on the planet. They seem incapable of absorbing the concept that one can read a thing critically or for a “know your enemy” purpose and NOT just absorb and embrace it. Having NO or very poor mental filters, they cannot conceive of a mind protected by strong filters that ‘tag and bag’ information into different buckets of use. This one truth & beauty. That one trash and marker of trash. Another one somewhat wrong, but useful. Yet another ‘interesting exemplar of twisting to lie with a bit of truth distorted by a lot of spin’. Yet another ‘has truth, but wrapped in unfortunate context’. Some as “True, actually. But saying it will bring you hate mongers.”

    An interesting example of that last one is the ever growing prohibition on ANY recognition of racial differences, real though they may be. Say “Blacks have 10% more dense bones” and you must be branded for life as a RACIST!!!!! Yet it is true. My Black motorcycle buddy would sink like a stone in the pool while I’d bob around on the surface. We laughed about it together. MY ancestors needed to swim to shore when the boat sank, some times resting and floating along the way (at least for the ones that survived…). His had to stay out of the crocodile and disease filled waters but fight harder on land, running faster with longer heavier legs, jumping higher with bigger butt muscles. Mine needed shorter legs to avoid losing feet to frostbite. But recognize that? Say Whites make better long distance runners due to larger lungs, but blacks can out-sprint them like crazy? Why you must be a racist. For recognizing reality.

    The recognition of the Honor and Bravery of the Confederate Army as your (sometimes literally) brothers in arms who you vanquished, by letting them remember their flag; that small kindness is anathema to the P.C. police. They can not conceive of it. Theirs is an entirely Scorched Earth Policy barren of humanity or empathy for your brothers & sisters on the “other side”.

  84. E.M.Smith says:


    I could, if I could…

    The problem is the nature of the postings as challenges. Failure to respond to a challenge is taken as implicit endorsement by many, even with a disclaimer. So I end up either making a detailed response (that, it seems, does not get read…) or ‘decorating’ the original with in-line rebuttal if in moderation.

    It is MY problem that I can’t let that crap go unchallenged, but just with a ‘disputed’ marker. Like someone saying they saw your sister whoring down on 86th street, you can’t just say “that is disputed”…

    So in some ways it is as much about my need to not let crap decorate MY notebook and be in the grill of MY friends, as it is about his content.

  85. philjourdan says:

    @YMMV – Since it was an American school in Germany, I could not really say if they were taught that in the Deutscher Gymnasiums. But yes, we were. Guess that is why I sleep under a desk to this day. :-)

  86. philjourdan says:

    @EMS – Re: Racist Slaver – I do not think there is a flag for that. All you need to be is a conservative to be a racist slaver.

  87. The True Nolan says:

    Bit of WW2 Confederate flag history:

    As for the current meme of “Confederate Flag = White Supremacists Slaver” — I won’t even go there. That is such a deep hole filled with ignorance and misinformation that the effort is not worth the infinitesimal hope of results.

  88. E.M.Smith says:

    I got a reply back from my ‘help desk’ enquiry. (Yes, it really does work like that. I ‘think a question’ submission then go do other stuff and later a PING! pops up an answer to the conscious level…):

    “I had submitted my DB query with a ‘humor context desired’ so got the reference to the ~1950s spot remover commercial. Had I submitted a reference request of similar type but with seriousness as context, I’d have been served Macbeth. Please adjust future queries accordingly”…

    It would seem that my emotional context is an implied database search key…

  89. Russ Wood says:

    On your comment that the Lefties seem to have no or little mental filtering capability, I also note something that is frequently echoed: Lefties have no sensa yumor! In fact, it seems like one can define the Left by all the things of common humanity that THEY HAVE NOT GOT! What was it the the modern poet wrote about the hollow men?
    P.S. Thanks for the on-site description of the ‘terrible riot’ at the Capitol. I may have to use it to hit my MSM-watching, Lefty son over the head to get him to UNDERSTAND that he’s been lied to.

  90. YMMV says:

    @Russ Wood, “What was it the the modern poet wrote about the hollow men?”
    TS Eliot

    This is the way the world ends
    Not with a bang but a whimper.

    TS Eliot is my bestest poet. I don’t usually like poetry unless it is in a song. Him, I like.

    The recent Biden Hunger Games featured a young poet I had never heard of and who the media went ga-ga over. (Not to be kongfused with Lady Gaga herself). So I had to look at that poem.
    Voice your woke political feelings and you are a star. Sucks. Doesn’t go down well with me.

    RT has a good op-ed:
    “We must depoliticise life in the West otherwise we will turn into a totalitarian society where nothing is personal anymore”
    It quotes Yeats. He wrote some good stuff too. Some of the op-ed’s comments:

    A hallmark of totalitarian societies is that there’s no escape from politics and the dominant state ideology.

    In the choice between the personal and the political, between listening to the politician, or romancing (even if only in his imagination), the poet chooses the personal. He is right to do so. Totalitarian societies come about when people do the opposite. When they put politics before the personal. When they betray old friendships for ‘the cause’, or put ‘following the party line’ before family and loved ones.

    Happy New Year? Don’t you dare be happy! The point is not whether or not some of these causes are worthy but the fact that the powers-that-be think we have to be bashed over the head with them every minute of the day and night, including right at the start of a New Year, (when we should be getting tiddly on champagne, doing the Hokey Cokey, and kissing – and hugging – fellow humans).

    “Lefties have no sensa yumor!” — totally, it was all squeezed out by the politics tumor.

  91. Compu Gator says:

    E.M.Smith commented on 21 January 2021 at 7:49 pm GMT:

    […] so far the Tech Talk postings this week have shown zero interest from commenters.

    Wey-ell, I do try to keep up with your Tech Talk postings, but you crank those blog entries out too frequently for me to follow without feelings that I reallly need to either:
    • take care of my own computing technical chores; or
    • get away from my computers more often.

    And until I acquire a Linux-driven SBC and the necessary cables for myself, I doubt that I have much worthwhile to contribute.

  92. Compu Gator says:

    E.M.Smith commented on 23 January 2021 at 4:17 am GMT:

    With that: “Out Damned Spot!”…

    As you & I have both written separately, in comments in your blog, the seniority gained by each is closing on 3 score & 10 years.

    Which raises these considerations, among others, for me:
    • arranging the survival & appropriate distribution of family-history materials; and
    • evaluating & choosing new technology for technical projects, in particular, new programming languages, none of which yet stimulate enthusiasm in me for devoting time & effort to them in what are most likely only my few remaining years.

    Given those and related priorities, Sεrιoso isn’t worthy of any more of your already extensive effort on his behalf, where “effort” includes “moderation“. 

    Sooo, reining my thoughts into an explicit recommendation that I’d decided upon days before you closed voting: dump him.

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