Monday, July 26, 2021

Homeless Thoughts - The Spy vs Spy Edition

 I don’t have a lot to say on any one topic today so we’re going to bounce around a bit.

As a follow-up to last week’s post about the COVID Anti-Vaxxers, I wanted to discuss another meme I saw over the weekend, that’s as dishonest as it is dangerous.

There’s basically nothing true in this text. Again, we have idiots bending statistics to suit their nefarious needs. What they’re doing is twisting percentages… you know, like if one thing happens out of a sample of 100 and there were zero the last time, you can claim a 100% increase. The Washington Post explains it better:

The more vaccinated a population, the more we’ll hear of the vaccinated getting infected. For example, say there’s a community that’s 100% vaccinated. If there’s transmission, we know breakthrough cases will happen. So, by definition, 100% of outbreak cases will be among the vaccinated. It will just be 100% out of a smaller number.

Cue Israel. They are one of the global leaders in vaccinations; 85% of Israeli adults are vaccinated. So, say we have the following scenario:

With an infection rate among the vaccinated of 2% and infection rate of 13% among the unvaccinated, this would give us an efficacy rate of 85%.”

No matter which way the Anti-Vax people try to twist it, 99.5% of COVID deaths in the US are among unvaccinated people. Their claim of 40% new infections among the vaccinated is pure fiction. I wish the danger they’re causing was as well, but alas, that’s all too real.

Here’s another alarmist meme from the weekend:

Of course Socialism won't be attractive because it's completely and willfully misrepresented here.

I can see a couple of ways to go at this. First off, how the hell do they get taking 70% of a salary to give to others? That’s total BS. Any money that’s taken from us to disperse to other programs (Federal taxes) is 25-35% on the average taxpayer. Even if you add state taxes, you still don’t hit 70%. So the example falls apart right there.

Or, one can compare it to our current system, where (to stick with the example) you get $10 from cleaning the bathroom, then have to spend $6 on housing, $3 to $7 (or much more) on medical expenses, $2 on transportation to and from the bathroom (call it a Hallway Tax), and you still haven’t paid for dinner yet. So now you have to clean another room just to eat, keep the lights on and the cable/internet/phones working.

Conservatives would rather endure a system like that than cope with the idea that someone of whom they do not approve might get help that they, themselves, do not.

One might argue that cleaning the bathroom might be worth $15, but conservatives wouldn’t like that either because military members have to clean bathrooms for less.

Again, I posit that the very rich sponsor memes like this to ensure that nothing ever interferes with their place at the top of the economic heap. If The People ever demanded a fair shake, it would be very costly for the 1%, so they ensure we spend our time fighting with each other rather than turning our attention to them.


I’m glad Nancy Pelosi told Kevin McCarthy to shove two of his nominees for the House Insurrection Investigation. There’s no question that the nominations of Gym Jordan and Jim Banks were meant to disrupt the examination of evidence and turn the panel into a sideshow. We’ve seen Jordan’s act before, basically acting like a zoo monkey, making a lot of noise and flinging poo around the room.

If the Republicans wanted an actual bipartisan investigation, they could have had one months ago when a full Congressional Investigation was proposed. But now, they shot that down in near-unanimous fashion. (Six GOP votes for it.)

So, you can’t play nice? Screw it, we’ll do it ourselves. And I like that she’s still nominating a couple Republicans to sit on the panel. It must be hard to find one who’s actually looking for the truth about how it happened and who was behind it. And for which Congress members gave guided tours of the Capitol Building to the future insurrectionists. I know there are some Representatives with their sphincters in a knot over wondering how THAT is going to play out.


I love the Olympics. Sure, they probably should have postponed these games some more but as long as they’re on, I’m gonna watch.

I started watching the Olympics in 1972 and have enjoyed them ever since. In fact, I’ve written about them a few times before, with my Top Olympic Moments, and general thoughts on the 2018 Winter Games, where I noted that bobsledding looks like a lot of fun, but only if you’re the driver. For everyone else in the sled, it’s like being smuggled into a drive-in movie in the trunk of a car.

There’s also one on the 2014 USA/Russia hockey game, with a nod to its famous predecessor in 1980, and one on how there’s so much more whining about the results than there used to be.

I started watching over the weekend and it was like being a kid again and watching the ABC Wide World of Sports, only it went all day. It’s still too early in the games for much of an analysis tonight, but is it me or is NBC going commercial-happy with their prime-time coverage. I swear they go to commercial every 5 goddamn minutes. I know they paid a lot for broadcast rights but for the love of all that’s holy, how about actually showing the action? It’s not like there's not something going on at all times!

I had one suggestion though, for the opening ceremonies. I know they always do something in keeping with the cultural traditions of the host country. How cool would it have been for them to have Godzilla light the torch with his fire breath? That would have been epic. Maybe they could have had Blue Oyster Cult play and bring their stage monster, if it still works. Just retrofit it with a flamethrower. Easy-peasy.


Last week I got to do something I’d only seen alluded to in movies and on TV and I’m quite proud of myself.

See, my cell phone has service from Sprint, which recently merged with T-Mobile. Ever since spring, T-Mobile has been bombing me with messages imploring me to upgrade my phone to take advantage of their new 5G service. But the thing is, I like my phone and I don’t want to change it.

I’m not one of those “phone freaks” who has to have the latest and greatest at all times. I’m still on my second smartphone since 2015, the iPhone 8. It works perfectly well for my needs and I like the thumbprint ID. I don’t want a newer one that has face recognition, that’s I’ll have to pick up and raise when I want to turn it on.

About two weeks ago, they called me to try to get me to upgrade and for once, I actually picked up. After his spiel, I asked, “When you do go 5G, will my phone still work at all?

Yes. But only on LG” (Whatever that is.)

Then that’s fine, I don’t need an upgrade. When my phone stops working, I’ll let you know.”

End of conversation.

Then last week a small package showed up, from T-Mobile. It was a new SIM card, to install in my phone so I can get their 5G service.

Oh, so NOW they admit they can adapt my phone rather than force me into an upgrade. HA! If I hadn’t been an obstinate prick, they would have soaked me for hundreds of dollars for a phone I didn’t want.

So now, the cool part… I had to change a SIM card.

That’s one of those things you always see in spy movies and stuff, when someone doesn’t want to be tracked on their phone, they change the SIM card.

Not having looked at my phone in years without the case, I had no idea where the damned thing went. Luckily there were some simple instructions. As I got down to it, I felt like the Mission Impossible theme song was playing in the background. Or maybe Jack Bauer was out there waiting for my signal to reappear.

Dammit! We’re running out of time!

Once I wrestled it out of the case, I saw a very small covered slot on the side. I needed to take the poker they supplied, (it looked like a paperclip with one pointy end), and poke it into the tiny hole in the slot cover, to pop out the drawer. Once done, I just had to swap the SIM cards, which are a little smaller than the chip on your credit card. I noticed that one corner was cut, so there was only one way to put it in. Of course, in the process of doing that, I dropped the chip right beside the one I just took out, which gave me a moment of panic. What if I mixed them up? Luckily, I found a small T-Mobile logo on one of them, so… crisis averted.  

So, I managed to get the chip back in the phone, reboot it, and voila. I have a phone again, albeit now with “T-Mobile” in the top corner rather than “Sprint.” I'm ready to save the world.

Now watch me crack the screen next week.


Infidel753 said...

99.5% of new infections in the US are among unvaccinated people

Are you sure about that? I know 99.5% of covid-19 deaths are among unvaccinated people, but I think the new infections aren't skewed that much. The vaccine does give some protection against being infected, but the main benefit is that if you do get the disease, being vaccinated makes it much less likely to be serious (or deadly).

bluzdude said...

You're right, that's what I meant. I made the change. Thanks for the heads-up.

RO said...

I'm laughing because I kept getting a ton of emails asking me to upgrade, which I ignored initially, then I realized since it was FREE, I was going to go for it. Next day the new phone was delivered via Fed Ex, and I'm surprised how well it works. But all I need to do is call a few people or text. I do the main stuff on the laptop. I'm a serious Olympics person, and have had the tendency to veg in front of the tv, but not this year. Every time I turn around, someone has dropped out, or lost early on during the trials, really disappointing me. But it has allowed me to see various sports that I haven't noticed before in the past, which is pretty interesting. It's fascinating to see these athletes at work, and you can tell how much they've put into their sport. No way you could have me on a rowing team and expect to win anything at all - ever!(lol) Hope you're doing well, and sending you guys lots of hugs, RO

bluzdude said...

I have a lot of angst when it comes to changing phones. I'm convinced that I'll never be able to get all the stuff from one phone to the other, and the last thing I want to do is have to download all the apps again, or even worse, load them with my information.

Sweetpea is getting a new phone though... we plan on taking it to the T-Mobile store for the transition.