Posts from the ‘Blurb’ Category

Vacation Pics

Plitvica Lakes Nationalpark

Plitvica Lakes Nationalpark

Plitvica Lakes Nationalpark

Plitvica Lakes Nationalpark

Plitvica Lakes Nationalpark

Plitvica Lakes Nationalpark

The trip to the park took 4 hours. Back, another 4 hrs. Plus more than 3 hours hiking.

I had managed to snap a few pictures without people in them. Trust me. That’s an accomplishment.

(If you have questions, I’m open to answering them. Try my mastodon: @augur@metalhead.club)

The sea. The beautiful sea.

The (tiny) Dragon of Rovinj. ^^

If any of you ever make it to Croatia, to Istria in particular, try this beer. It’s a bit costly (thanks honey! <3), but worth every Kuna and Lipa.

Never, ever have I tasted a better beer. Every taste, every note and smell that’s supposed to be in it, IS in it: A note of coffe, with a creamy smoothness of cocoa, a hint of lemon. On top of the goodness of a really good dark beer.

Usually when something is supposed to taste like something, I don’t get that taste.

No. I’m not paid for this. An insignificant schmuck like me doesn’t get promotion deals. (Dear Bujska Pivovara, brewers, IF you read this, and want to thank me for this endorsement – I wouldn’t say no a bottle San Servolo tamno or two…)

In case you want to learn more about this beer…

Rovinj in the distance.

The beautiful and lush hotel grounds of Hotel Amarin

Take care, and may you have a vacation as beautiful as ours.

A.

Advertisements

The Digitally Dilapidated

During our stay in a four star hotel at the beautiful istrian beach, with warm, clear waters and a great view on Rovinj, I noticed something.
Parents, kids of all ages, entire families, couples, all just watching/reading shit of their phones, tablets, and in one case, a laptop even.

At breakfast, lunch, dinner, beach, pool, wherever.
“What did you see during your vacation in Coratia?”
“YouTube, Facebook and Instagram”
Fuck you.

Here, my conviction, that smartphones aren’t made for us, got it’s final veneer. Perhaps some future generation that is truly capable of multitasking might take advantage of this stuff, but it is not for us.

Instead of spending time with their families, their spouses, their parents, their siblings, their children, or just plain taking in the vistas, nature, clean air and relative silence, people are staring at their phones! Instead of getting away from the shit that they are confronted with daily at home, they take it with them EVERYWHERE, and then wonder, why they do not feel relaxed.
I had people at the hike through the Plitvica Lakes Nationalpark, looking at their phones, occasionally looking up, going “wow” snapping a crappy cellphone picture and then continue typing/reading shit.

For Fucks Sake! LIVE IN THE REAL WORLD! Not the virtual world. Converse with one another, and get more substance out of fewer connections, instead of more connections with less substance.
Moronic cancers of human (de)evolution.
Take care, and put away those fucking devices, make a scheduled “social media (half)hour” once a day, and other than that, no social media, no texts/messages. Same with news. Just calls.
A.

Vacation things

Grab a bunch of people from a variety of 4 star resorts at 0730 on a day long hiking (!) excursion to a bunch of lakes and
.a) half of them will not be dressed for the occasion: Flipflops and hiking don’t go together.
.b) half of them will have munched through their lunch packages by 0830.
.c) some will have NO or INSUFFICIENT hydration rations with them. There was this one hipster dude with a .33 liter drinking bag for himself and his girlfriend. The faucets in the park were ALL marked as “Water not drinkable”. I carried 1.5 liters for myself alone and still had to buy additional stuff.

To quote Scar from the Lion King: I’m surrounded by idiots…

A.

Social media ain’t for us

Social networks have turned people into shittier friends.

That’s my conclusion after going off of Facebook and not doing much on Mastodon for a few days.

We have our connections, and acting on the “assumption” that our audience is there, we send something out into the aether and giddily await reactions.

We do not actively seek out our friends: “Hey, how are you? Got time for a coffee to talk about stuff?”
No, we act as if we are on a stage, we await reactions, and we react.
We perform.
We perform the initial action, and we perform the reactions.
It’s the same across all platforms, not just Facebook, but also Mastodon, and of course Instagram, Twitter, MeWe, Tsu and all the other garbage heaps too.

Social networks make us (more) asocial.
Social networks aren’t for us (people).

We are social animals.
We, once, needed the group, the tribe, to survive:
Loners died. Groups thrived.

It is engrained in our genes, that we need a group. Our friends, our family, our tribe, our people.
But because today (read: current times) it is harder to maintain friendships (full time employment, separated by many kilometres, different life choices [f.e. kids vs. no kids], ever shifting and expanding ‘tribal’ landscapes, etc.) we *could* use social media as a crutch, as an add on.

But this add-on has become full on bloat-ware that is now taking over the entire system.

People have shifted their entire lives into social media, they are always on, always available (except when asleep).
Which I find highly disturbing.
Which, incidentally, is only adding to my decision to kill all my Facebook and Google related stuff, and limit my Mastodon time.

If I want to scream into the void and wait for any reactions, I’m doing it on my blog. (Or I’d go to a comedy club on stage.)

But I’m done with social media. It is asocial. It has taught me that.
I noticed that I have become a shittier friend, and I’ve seen this happen to other people as well: Be seen. Be seen seeing.
But I don’t want to be an actor on a stage receiving attention at the speed and value of a Like/Fav/RT/mention/etc.
I want REAL connections; conversations – even digital – but not over an eavesdropping service that finds ways to insert itself and sabotage the entire thing.

No thanks.

Whatever you do out there, take care,
A.

The case in favour of TV/Radio license fees

Since I’m a strong believer of freespeech and free press and all that jazz, I have to tackle this.

Commercial channels are subject to market forces. It is this circumstance that makes factually wrong, and potentially dangerous, opinions wide spread. Because they bring views, which pleases the advertisers, which brings money.
So they bring f.e. antivaxx Bullshit, invite to “discussions” with proponents of said BS and endanger pubic health.
Freedom of speech? Sure.
Factually wrong? Sure.
Dangerous? Also sure. (In this example)

But those commercial channels are subject to market forces. Remember? If their biggest advertiser(s) don’t want certain topics, they won’t bring them. Freespeech? Nope!
“Advertiser friendly” spech? Hell yeah.

I hear you saying “why don’t they finance the pubic channels through a tax, giving them a budget?”
Well. First, budgets are appointed annually. Not much planning ahead if you don’t know next year’s budget.
Second. Who appoints that budget? The government.
Depending on your political inclination, that might be a good thing. For now. Governments change (in democratic countries at least). Next term there might be the polar opposite in charge. The news could/would change dramatically.
No more refugees welcome, now it’s only the evil foreigners. Or vice versa.
No more climate change, more everything is peachy. Or vice versa.
With a license fee model, the public channels remain (relatively) free of such political influence.

In addition. The finance model through the fee allows the public channels to produce/show programmes that would otherwise be neglected or outright not made at all, because they aren’t selling.

Sure. Public channels are run by boards, by humans, with their own political inclinations, their own affiliations and agendas. Are fee financed channels truly objective? No. No one is.
But they’re independent of the ruling party/parties. They’re independent of market forces.
Is there room for improvement? Sure. But to abolish the fee would end a vital pillar of free speech, a vital pillar of independent and objective journalism.

So. You morons on the left, you shitheads on the right, do not infringe on our rights, on our freedom. Hands off the fee.

Take care
A.

 

Addendum.

This was written way ahead of my country’s turmoil over abolishing that fee. Thus threatening to plunge us into a darker age. Now, more than ever, we must fight to protect freedom (of speech) and independent journalism.

Tor

Rarely, if ever do I get political on here.

Hell, if I’d still be doing the weekly Friday thing there’d probably be more political stuff.

But in this instance I can’t keep my god damn mouth shut.

At the 22nd European Police Congress the german minister Günter Krings said that he could understand the need for using Tor in some autocratic regimes, but that there’s no need for this in a democratic society. That everyone who uses it there must be nefarious and that laws should reflect that.

The right to free speech, and the right to anonymity, the right to privacy, are fundamental human rights.

Period.

The level of surveillance people are exposed to in the internet, not just from “autcratic states”, but by “democratic” governments, and especially by corporations, is massive.
Crafting the GDPR on the one hand, to strengthen the stance of the people against the data exploitation by corporations, and then on the other hand, trying to brand the very tools people use to escape that corporate surveillance as criminal – is psychotic at best, and hypocritic at worst.

I smell money. And the wet dreams of the Stasi.

Let us not forget whistleblowers, journalists, dissidents living in “democratic” countries, but working to dissolve the autocratic governments of their countries of origin, where the “democratic” country has extradition agreements with those autocratic regimes, like, let’s say, for example, well, CHINA. (Or, let’s just drop a name of recent tragic fame here: Kashoggi)

Articles 11 and 13 are hiddeous crimes against freespeech, information freedom, journalism, the people, Europe & the EU itself, but the call to make TOR illegal is even worse. All in all these ideas, and “laws” show the disconnect these politicians have to the world and times we live in.

Then Krings was followed by my country man and president of the national congress Wolfgang Sobotka, who praised China (of all places) for its disregard of privacy and dataprotection when doing surveillance on its citizens.

Slow Clap.
https://youtu.be/f1N5lZw7e78
OTR rather. Utter Crap.
https://youtu.be/GDVvUU5MT50

(Source for this post:https://www.heise.de/newsticker/meldung/Europaeischer-Polizeikongress-Weg-mit-dem-Darknet-4313276.html)

I think these politicians need to be put INTO the situations they are advocating for. Krings needs to be doxxed. Fully. Completely. Throughly. Continuously.
Sobotka needs to be surveilled 24/7 on public broadcast.
After about a decade they can then decide whether their ideas were good or not.

So, in closing, guess I’m a criminal. Because I use Tor. And will continue to do so.

Take care, delete Facebook, Google, Twitter and the likes, get Tor (don’t put your money on a VPN for goodness sake!).
A.

Changes 2019

As you all no doubt have guessed by now, I’m a lazy dude.

Really lazy.

And highly unorganized.

Which is why I’m streamlining this blog.

Starting February this year there will be ONE RoF post post month. On the 15th. For December 2019 I will try and come up with some Christmas calendar stuff, but I’m not making any promises. January 2020, will either see no planned posts what so ever, or I’ll think of something.

Friday posts.

It ia apparent that I have struggled with these in the past. So they’re becoming something irregular. If they come, they’ll be on Fridays. If not, wait a week. Maybe then I’ll have something for you. If you’ve come for Playmobil (our stayed for it), let me know, I can do that. 😉

As for the people I have picked up on Mastodon – I have a backcatalogue. In earnest, I will continue to fight anti-science people.

GMOs, vaccines and Nuclear power are safe and are our ticket to the future, if we want to end world hunger, be safe from diseases, and curb climate change.

Earth isn’t flat, chemtrails aren’t real, nor are homeopathy, naturopathy, colloidal silver, MMS (aka BLEACH), and all that other quack shit. Go see a doctor.

Nature isn’t your friend, it wants 5 of your 7 kids dead, and you should be dead between 40 and 50. Unless you have no technology, live in a cave or under a bush, eat only what you find (be it plantbased or a dead animal) in a raw uncooked fashion – shut the fuck up about anything being ‘unnatural’.

So.

There.

2019. Let’s get rolling.

Take care, A.