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  • ddt 00.59 on February 18, 2017  

    Forbes, Reminding Everyone That It Knows Jackshit

    Via foreboding Forbes in a fallacious #farticle:

    U.S. policymakers are engaged in the usual wailing and gnashing of teeth, fulminating about the threat to American security and debating which unsatisfactory course of action Washington should next take. There is almost unanimous agreement that the DPRK poses a serious, if not currently the most serious, international danger facing America.

    But the threat is largely self-induced. That is, Washington could easily deflate the fantastic nightmare of a North Korean nuclear attack on America by leaving the Korean peninsula.

    source

    The emphasis is all Ddong Today and really, the only two things that will be accomplished with an American pull out on the Korean peninsula will be:

    1. The South Korean government, opposition groups, chaebols, etc. will loose their favorite boogeyman/scapegoat and be forced to look inward for malcontents and only be able to come up with “immigrants” which will be the start of a backlash/purge of darker skinned folks from parts of lesser Asia and the Middle East (where “lesser” = poorer than South Korea which is basically every country except Japan and China; UAE, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia).
    2. China will flex more muscle in the region, increase its bullying showdowns in the West Sea and sink more South Korean fishing boats and Coast Guard vessels.

    Forbes is shitting armchair analysis of a country most of their staff probably couldn’t name 10 brands from or a single province or name five cities. They also probably don’t know that South Korea has had an incredibly puny defense budget for so long, that an American pull out would leave the country ill-equiped to fend off aggressors. (Heck, the government removed most of the anti-tank barriers north of Seoul in 2006).

    There is a standing army and mandatory military service and the ROK marines are hardcore, but the defense of the country has been strategized for the last 60 years with the US right there. Having troops arrive after a conflict has started from Japan and Guam might not be good enough.

    Forbes’ farticle has a page 2:

    But the U.S. could take one simple step which would transform the Korean conflict. Washington should end its security guarantee to the South and phase out American troops. While offering their diplomatic assistance, U.S. policymakers should turn over responsibility for dealing with the North to its neighbors.

    There is no “one simple step” here. Pulling 30,000 troops and support and logistics out of anywhere is not “one simple step”. And Accomplishment #1 (above) would slow down, delay, and possibly even derail or perpetually sabotage the “one simple step” from ever happening. South Korea needs the US presence for more than just defense posture—not having to maintain a huge military budget means most Koreans pay a paltry 3.3% of their earnings in taxes. (Yes, this is another way, a much bigger way, that American tax dollars subsidize the South Korean economy even with the local government picking up most of the yearly costs of stationing US soldiers on its lands). 

    Forbes also seems to think that ending a security guarantee is a good thing to do. This would have repercussions with other, present tense allies already nervous about the Trump agenda. Worse, breaking a security guarantee would definitely have repercussions with other, future tense allies—potential friends needed in situations unfathomable right now asked to do things for a guarantee that would mean a lot less if one had been broken in the past because it was politically convenient. 

    Ddong Today should also mention a third, somewhat hidden accomplishment:

    1. All those Korean products Americans love so much, the Hyundai cars, the Samsung washing machines, the LG phones, etc. would be a lot more expensive once the tax burden in South Korea increased significantly and the country’s citizens could no longer pay the inflated prices offered for the identical items in the South Korean marketplace. Once South Koreans stopped subsidizing Korean goods at home, prices in America would rise to normal and no longer be as competitive further sealing the economic down spirals (unless America got giddy for cheap Chinese knockoffs again, it’d be back to Japanese gadgets or ass expensive Korean ones). 

    tagged as: ddt journal, forbes, , ,   
     
  • ddt 15.28 on February 17, 2017  

    Why Trump Hating Asshats Are Do Nothings

    This. Read this “article”. It will take less than 10 seconds because it isn’t an article, it’s a 5am tweet. It’s less coherent than the stream-of-angst from the president of the United States of America. This is clickbait:

    Why are the liberals completely overreacting to Trump’s unique style of governing?

    They’re not. He’s a fucking sociopath. And here’s a recipe for raspberry scones:

    source

    The rest is a scone recipe. Literally. 

    This kind of internet segue is a sign of the interrelational quagmire we find ourselves wherein discourse has been replaced by one-offs. Trump is “a fucking sociopath”—why? Cite one example, there’s lots to choose from, so it’s not that hard—it’s just lazy not to choose an example then breakdown why it makes Trump a sociopath. Here, from the NYT transcript of the president’s hour and fifteen minute press conference:

    I will not back down from defending our country. I got elected on defense of our country. I keep my campaign promises, and our citizens will be very happy when they see the result. They already are, I can tell you that. Extreme vetting will be put in place and it already is in place in many places.

    source

    Excepting that a true sociopath has extreme anti-social tendencies and that Trump is almost the opposite of that (as narcissists are extroverts), the other trait of a true sociopath is a lack of conscience. Trump made so many campaign promises trying to be everything to his wide, but mostly white voter base, that’s it’s improbable that he could keep all his campaign promises even if he intended to. Stuff like releasing his tax returns and making Mexico pay for its new border wall (here Time has a nice pre-election round-up of seven campaign promises Trump would be unlikely to keep). Trump has repeatedly dismissed these two things and clearly doesn’t care that folks don’t like that. He does have to care because the law can’t force him to keep his campaign promises and neither can “the people”. 

    He is in office and is doing whatever he pleases which mostly includes chastising his political opponents, the press, the intelligence community, liberals, and SNL. 

    This isn’t a hard thing to write about. It takes a few extra minutes to focus one’s thoughts, to find a few links, and Jenga a post together that has some substance beyond a bar one-liner. 

    And, Ddong Today disagrees with the “he’s a sociopath” armchair analysis. It doesn’t really matter what the psychological makeup of the 45th president is—focusing on that is yet another distraction from the core issues. Like, he is already in office and fucking shit up with his cohort of hate. They’re all off-kilt in some way … then again, so are a lot of regular folks, so again, it doesn’t matter what Trump is, it’s what he’s doing and how we talk about this shit that actually matters.  


    tagged as: , ddt journal, , ,   
     
  • ddt 10.42 on February 16, 2017  

    How to Play With Trolls

    Remember in how in school, there was always an asshole (or five). The ones that would do and say stuff just to get the teacher(s) amped up, to piss off other kids, to push others around … remember those asshats? Those were bullies. Bullies come with every endeavor we make into the public sphere—one might go as far as to say that bullies are a part of the world or bullies make you strong or bullies give you reasons to push back, to stand up.

    At the core of a bully is someone who gets off on pushing other people’s buttons, either psychologically or physically. When put like that, bullies are literally everywhere. President Trump is a bully, but this is already long in the tooth (along with bozo and punk). Much of the government consists of bullies—DAPL being the foremost example, but any video of black folks encountering a police officer in every US city almost always ends up with some form of bullying. The ultimate story arc of white privilege is when folks call Trump a bully like he is the first one to take a government office. History reveals/reminds that the United States government has been a 200+ years escapade of bullying with the rich and the white as masters of the bullying machine, establishing a pecking order where people of color are always at the bottom with the next tier up being anyone denying the definition of “normal”.  Trump is nothing more than another thread in a government that pushes people around and builds its successes upon that. Folks need to come to terms with that concept or be just another foot imprint in The Life of Reason

    The differences between a troll and a bully:

    a troll will do or say anything to detract one from a destination or idea usually by way of offense or threat

    a bully will do or say anything to get one to act in accordance with their wish which is often a form of humiliation

    The OED is less succinct in its scope:

    troll — a person who makes a deliberately offensive or provocative online post.

    bully — a person who uses strength or power to harm or intimidate those who are weaker.

    It’s important to know this difference because the only “new” thing about the Trump administration (a White House of assholes; incompetence; hatred politics; etc. are nothing new), is that Americans are experiencing their first troll president (Russia has had this pleasure for the last 12 years, as have many other countries). It’s fitting that America has a troll for a president given the rise of the nonsensical internet and the growing infiltration and subjugation of mainstream American internet discourses by the 3rd internet (where there is the internet for regular things like CNN and Facebook; where there is the so called ‘darknet’ built on the onion protocol; where there is an alt-rite internet that mostly talks in circles to itself).

    Question: How many guides does the internet need for dealing with, living under, or resisting a troll president?

    Answer: As many guides have to be written until every pissed American starts reading the using the strategies within and building upon those ideas to enhance and create newer, better strategies. 


    How to Play with Troll by Ddong Today

    1. Don’t Feed the Troll — Trolls live for conflict (especially violence or its little sister, high school drama); not feeding the troll is internet debate 101, but IRL (in real life), folks seem to have both forgotten this basic rule or don’t know they’ve encountered a troll. The Billy Goats Gruff ultimately solved their troll problem with violence by chucking the troll into the stream where it, presumably, drowned. The key point of the story is that the first two goats got across by tricking the troll. That should be the take away. Tricking trolls is pretty easy, on and off line, because trolls are more focused on the disruption and destruction of a message that they’re able to be caught and called out on their BS. Call out each instance of troll BS to the troll’s face and the world. Trolls are so goal-oriented and their need for troll-success so deep that they would rather abort one failed trolling to get to another one that they can troll successfully to feel good about themselves and their trolling. Call that shit out, every time. 
    2. Don’t Ignore the Troll — It takes more effort to ignore a troll than it does to call one out and trolls know that, so the amount of time and energy being expelled makes the troll happy. One needs only to look at any Trump twitter fiasco to catch mental imagery of Narcissus gleaming because he is the most talked about girl in the strip mall. The troll love for attention deepens with every act of “inattention”. See the troll, name the troll.
    3. Don’t Try to Argue with the Troll — Trolls will use illogic against your logic and logic against your illogic and school you for being illogical, and if you’ve got an exceptionally feisty troll, school you on debate tactics. Talking with a troll is nothing like talking with a skilled spin-tactician like Kellyanne Conway, so one can expect what seems like chaos at every talkback. But remember that a troll will do anything to get one “off-message”, so all tools of trolldom and debate are put to use. The use of every tool in the shed usually leads to contradictory statements and positioning—the goals of disruption don’t allow one to also protect any one stance; troll hypocrisy is exceptional rife given enough time. So the key is to keep the trolling talking. Don’t let the troll think it has a trollvictory or it will stop engaging, instead give the troll things to talk about and let the troll talk. Soon the troll will expose itself to #1.  

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  • ddt 15.41 on February 15, 2017  

    The Way to Con Like Kellyanne

    Ddong Today hasn’t made time for this character yet, but her LEGO effigy made it to the Trump administration figurehead caricature photoshoot a couple of weeks back. It took a little work with the limited LEGO on hand to find a white block for the main head. The imagery is all there, for whatever nonsensical sounding gospel spews from Conway’s mouth, she is just mouth on a stick whose main purpose is to disrupt and confound (part of the larger FEWP agenda). Her style (as analyzed below) is as magnificent as it is malevolent. She’s been on the inner circle of the 2016 ticket and now has a seat at that same table where she is directed to do what she does best, thwart all intelligence with her illogic. 

    Illogic is a common theme for Westerners in South Korea and the strategies to deal with an illogical mouthpiece like Kellyanne Conway are the same:

    • walk away if you can
    • do not engage if have to stay
    • take away the reasons for the illogical mouthpiece to keep talking by switching to a new topic where the purveyor of illogic will begin to spout logic (sports works well here, no one would ever twist the rules of baseball, for example), once common ground of logic is established through the new topic, feel out the illogical mouthpiece for weaknesses of their illogical philosophy, then:
      • if a weakness can be found, slowly and very gently walk the illogical mouthpiece back towards the original topic reinforcing the bounds of the agreed upon logic from the new topic (really, this almost never happens … you’ve got a 30/70 chance) 
      • if no weaknesses can be found, get the fuck away from the nonsense before you kill
    • if you can’t find common logical ground with the illogical mouthpiece, get away (you’d wouldn’t hang around talking to acid, would you?)

    Watch the video to help you reverse engineer this gunk before applying the strategy above. 


    tagged as: ddt journal, , , , ,   
     
  • ddt 08.04 on February 13, 2017  

    What We Talk About When We Talk About the Internet

    What we think of as the internet has been under assault for years, perhaps even more than a decade, and to be honest, the nature of the assault has been vastly brushed over because for the longest time, the internet was place for a few kinds of information we could afford to not take seriously. Stuff like cats battling it out with lightsabers, lists of every cultural and literary appropriation of the phrase ‘bad boys’, random meme generators, quick checks of whats-her-face in that movie, and hundreds of other bits of uselessness have become such a staple of two generations that it’s gobbled up the two before it (aka the “my mom is on Facebook” and “my grandpa tweets” phenomena) and has eaten its way into all the others that are up-and-coming. 

    It’s been a sick, fun ride that’s made a handful of people very, very, very rich. It’s also been a host of other things that aren’t that great. The internet has devastated mom-n-pop shops of all kinds (bookstores, video stores, copy shops). The internet has shredded most traditional media. Where Americans sat and watched the 5, 6, and 11’o clock news for basically 50 years, now most Americans get their news in fragments, sped-read across multiple sources. The veracity and integrity of “the media”—and let’s not get carried away here, the old model sucked and was either too liberal or too conservative (depending on who you talked to), but there were still standbys and a few names folks felt they could trust. This is almost all gone now. In another four years, or eight years, news, as we know it today, will be gone. This isn’t an alt-rite thing, this isn’t a Trump thing, this is what happens when there is a cultural shift in the way people relate to technology and each other in the same time period. The old systems don’t survive, they sort of adapt, cling, stagger, droop, and eventually die. Slowly. Think horses to cars; acoustic to electric; landline to cellular.

    Since the early days of the world wide web, AOL, news groups and the like, the idea of being anonymous has been appealing and the fear of loosing that anonymity has shaped most of the arguments over the internet since. For a while it was cookies, web sites set little files on your computer called cookies that tracked your habits, remembered your preferences and this freaked folks out. Then it was less than 1kb invisible images that couldn’t be blocked like cookies could. And later “browser profiles”, how your browser is configured leaves a footprint that can be tracked across the internet. Groups like the EFF work to keep these things private so folks can continue to have believe they have privacy (Snowden taught us better). 

    In the years leading to where we find ourselves today, news channels, newspapers, and urban legends would conjure the almost monthly story on the ‘evils of the internet’ with sensationalist headlines: Internet Safety for ChildrenHow Kids Fool Their Parents on Social NetworksRising Number of Kids Exposed to Online PornThe Undercover Parent, etc. All of these stories focus on the need for children to “understand the dangers” and suggestion some sort of parental supervision. This is where the dialog end for nearly everyone, if they bothered to start it at all. Yes, children are at risk, yes parents should monitor their children’s online behavior to the point of using spyware because it’s the responsible thing to do.

    We don’t talk enough about how everyone must be vigilant, how everyone should deal with cyberbullying, how families should keep an online eye on each other, much like they would if a family member were crossing the street. It’s that basic, but it’s also worse than that basic example. 

    For every company with an internet platform which exists to coral folks into groups and push ads in front of them or to harvest everything online keystroke for meta-data and then sell that information, millions of people willingly give up their most precious information: their address, their phone number, their status, their age, their income, etc. Companies are not responsible for the safeguarding of that information. If they loose it, you loose your account. If they get hacked, you loose your account (and a lot more if your password was 123456gg). Companies are not libel for not protecting your precious information. If you had a Yahoo! account anytime in the last 10 years, all of that data is being trafficked on the internet. If your Yahoo password was used for another account, that information is also being trafficked on the internet. The CNN article is a fucking joke of victim blaming:

    Use different passwords for all online accounts
    Beware of emails asking for more information
    Block access to your credit report

    They mention some of the fault is on Yahoo!:

    Companies need to step up security measures to protect themselves not only against hacking, but also against the aftereffects of hacking like credential stuffing attacks … “The trust that your users have in you is directly tied to the level of security they expect … If you don’t have confidence [in Yahoo] in the future, that’s a personal decision people need to make …

    Yahoo! rejected the repeated advice of their own security staff which is why they’re an easy target for this class-action lawsuit. There is no law and it’s not common policy for companies to detail what happens in case of a breach to your data or what (fi any) responsibility they have to protect that information. This is one of the most fucked up and least talked about things about the internet today.

    This exposure, this complete disregard for privacy in a constant race to fatten the wallets of a few isn’t as nasty as the internet has become.

    The worst of the internet is driven by three things laid out above (perhaps indirectly, so): money, privacy, lack of responsibility. To say that we, the users of the internet, are wholly in charge of those three things is what the Flim-Flam Man says with his wagon of broken trinkets as he blows through town. The suggestion that internet consumers users can walk off of a platform like Yahoo! to something else to show their displeasure is about as helpful as suggesting a family pick up and move house because the faucet water is toxic (hello Flint critics)—it has no basis in reality. One doesn’t just pull 50GB of photography, thousands of followers, and move to another Flickr. Media consolidation has had that ill effect on the internet too, just as much as not actually being in possession of those thousands of followers has had an ill effect (e.g. no client / benefactors list to move; just like no other house to move to when your water is poisoning you). 

    People are products of the web pages they log into in any equation where the company behind that page draws a single penny of profit from the existence of that person’s account. 

    These companies don’t get (not yet) that they have to protect their product.

    This means policing your platform. Companies should start by taking a stronger position on hate speech, then work down from there by employing well-train, human readers (and not algorithms) to sort things out. 

    This means not carving your platform into silos and attempting to milk coin from everyone. Companies should start by keeping everyone in the same pool, let users decide who they do and do not want to listen to or talk with.

    This means, and some aren’t going to like this, striping away the privacy. Companies should start by forcing users to use their legal name—Facebook has already started this, Twitter shoulda started long ago.

    This means protecting user data like IP, on a secure server, locked up, with limited access. Companies should have been compelled by law to do this from the beginning, and this is unlikely to become law under the Trump administration—watch the Yahoo! class action lawsuit; also watch the Verizon / Yahoo! deal, the outcome of those things will determine what happens next.

    This means separating freedom of speech from harassment (from “having fun” to criminal). Real, legal names go a long way here. There’re good reasons and background to support this move, read: And Then the Breitbart Lynch Mob Came for MeLeslie Jones Twitter Racism; Gamergate; How the Alt-Rite Influenced Trump Supporters’ Language on Facebook (“a large-scale analysis of 8,215,332 comments from 1,734,738 different accounts” … accounts, not people); Amid the Chaos in Berkeley, a Grinning Face, Covered in Blood (the nefarious case of Eddy Brock).

    #dronesmotherfucker


    tagged as: ddt journal, , speaking, ,   
     
  • ddt 10.33 on January 29, 2017  

    The new immigration executive action is racist. Showing preference for Christians doesn’t make it any less racist. 

    This weekend, it’s Muslims because that kind of ban is easy to push. But next weekend, next month, next year? Who else does the US not like? What other group(s) of people does Trump’s America disdain? 

    This ban is biased guilt by association. You are from a Muslim country. Terrorists are Muslim. Therefore, you are a terrorist.

    This logic is faulty and can and will be applied (as all things are once they are in play) to other groups, religions, and nations the Trump administration does not approve of.

    Let’s talk about Korea. For so many Americans there is only North Korea. Americans are barely cognizant of a South Korea (although Samsung may have helped to change that until their phones began exploding). The faulty logic drapes nicely here. The continued fear of a DPRK ICBM striking America will easily drive a Korean travel ban with average Americans not batting much of an eye based on other, racial stereotypes of Koreans (they eat dogs, they are shitty drivers, most of the woman are prostitutes).

    As an American citizen living abroad with a South Korean wife and child, we have been slowing building a 4-6 year exodus plan to live in America. To be near my family and to live with more space and more culture. The thought of living in America seems more and more distant with this administration. We already live in a country that denies asylum seekers bases on the color of their skin. We already live in a country that is xenophobic, where the average Joe Kim discriminates against anyone who is not of his race, his culture, his country. If the prospect of moving becomes which mildly oppressive, racist government do we want to live under, which is better? 

    The answer is the one where: the most money can be saved and the best healthcare can be had. Sadly, that looks to be less and less like America. 

    Given the way the week has fallen, orders signed, actions signed, making America great again looks to be mostly about making America white, Christian, and unforgiving. 


    tagged as: , ddt journal, hate, ,   
     
  • ddt 07.36 on January 22, 2017  

    Day 1 – Dr. T Signs Some Papers and Stuff

    It was a beautiful inauguration. The most beautiful ever watched by most Americans because most Americans don’t sit down and watch inaugurations—nobody cares. There’s no teams, no scores, no cheerleaders, no tits. It’s another excuse for American showmanship where the cameras follow a white guy and his wife around for a day (previous two presidential inaugurations excluded—they are the exception to the norm). When Americans want to watch white guys and their wives all day, they flip on Duck Dynasty. SSDS.

    People tuned in because they:

    1. wanted to see President Trump get popped by the Assassins or the Templars or Ferngully.
    2. wanted to see a revolution (that cuts a number of ways).
    3. wanted to see President Trump put his foot in his mouth.
    4. wanted to see lefties getting roughed up.
    5. wanted to see riot police getting hit with bricks.
    6. wanted to watch the associate editor of the WAPO ramble on on CBS about how this wasn’t the first time folks rioted during an inauguration, “Nixon had rocks thrown at his limousine.”source
    7. wanted to see their man wrest the capitol from the tentacles of the elite.
    8. wanted to see what the good missus President Trump would wear (and no one foresaw the Jackie O. comparisons).
    9. couldn’t find any episodes of Rick and Morty to watch.

    Then most people fell asleep waiting for the motorcade to motor or went to eat some food while the media talked about President Trump’s speech. Waking up the next day, it turns out that President Trump finally found himself a desk on day 1 of stewarding America and signed some stuff.

    The bulk of the MSM has dwelled on his signing of an executive order related to the Affordable Care Act, some say to reign it in, others say to break it down. It’s too soon to know … and, outside looking in, the Affordable Care Act seems poorly executed in the first place. And things that aren’t executed correctly are easy to build hate and distrust around and against.

    Figuring out what other things were important to President Trump to sign on his first use of a presidential pen took more leg work. Vice has this covered with some videos of presidential hobnobbing and games of pass-the-pen. One executive order was to change another law to all the new Secretary of Defense to take his post. Another was for a “National Day of Patriotism”—not many details for that though (some basics here).

    It’s hard to take these things in stride, to “give him a chance”. Folks like specifics, even if they don’t read them, it’s good to know that they are there, that they can be read, if the desire is there. Most folks will never bother to read up on much of anything, instead, clusters of groups that watch the inner workings of our government scour every line of print for things to that they think we either should know or be frighten by. Usually, those groups break for the latter—instilling fear is the shortest way to get folks to do stuff.

    Give the new whitehouse.gov site a read. Or look through the page source, they seem to have every incarnation of every browser covered, but I want to know if President Trump has taken care of the “cyber” yet. How many exploits will it take to fell whitehouse.gov? Someone will figure that out this year, bet on it.


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Ddong Today


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