Thursday Round-up – 22nd September

1. Politicians not paying attention to experts? Surely not…
The British government is facing awkward questions now that it has emerged that the brand new airport built on the South Atlantic island of St. Helena is likely to be unusable in its current location because of excessive wind shear.
It emerged that the Meteorlogical Office in the UK had warned the government that this was likely to be the case; however, nobody thought to ask them until airport construction was already in progress…
In the meantime the airport may end up as a white elephant even worse than the billion-plus Cuidad Real Airport in Spain. At least that airport was actually opened, although not enough people used it to prevent the operating company from going bankrupt.

2. Accomplishments
One of the new nonsense memes circulating on the internets is one claiming that Hillary Clinton has no accomplishments.
I do not think that word means what you think it means.
What I think the people who post these memes are really saying is that they do not think that Hillary Clinton has done anything for them. This is probably true. However, that does not mean that she has no accomplishments. Most people would regard being elected to the US Senate and becoming the US Secretary Of State as accomplishments, so trying to post a meme contradicting that really shows that the posters are, on this topic at least, profoundly unserious. Most likely they dislike Hillary Clinton for whatever reasons, and the meme is just another juvenile internet slam. Yawn.

3. Racism, Facebook hacking and personal responsibility
I work in IT, where corporations are expected to be responsible for securing their own data and the data of their clients against attack or theft. If my employer allows an unauthorized third party to hack into its network and steal information, or make unauthorized updates to data, that’s on us. We can blame the hackers, but in reality we should have prevented the hack in the first place. Certainly the third parties filing lawsuits will not be chasing the hackers. They will file against us, because it was our responsibility to secure data and we failed to exercise that responsibility.
Which brings us to the interesting story of Patsy Capshaw Skipper, the interim Mayor of Midland City Alabama. On August 25th Ms Skipper lost the Mayoral election to an opponent who is black. Shortly afterwards, her Facebook page showed a woman by the name of Patsy Capshaw Skipper moaning “The Nigger won” when asked about the election result.
Perhaps rather predictably, when this was noticed, Skipper deleted the messsage thread and then claimed that her Facebook account had been hacked.
Here’s the bad news Patsy. Even if your account was hacked, this is on you. It’s up to you to ensure that malicious people don’t hack your Facebook. Facebook is one of your windows to the wider world. Anything on your Facebook page, as you can see now, is viewed by the world as your property, a representation of you. Thanks to this reality, a lot of people in the world now think of you as a mean-spirited racist little chickenshit. No, blaming hackers doesn’t get you off the hook. It’s up to you to protect your online accounts. Not Facebook, or God, or the tooth fairy.
After all, you belong to the political party that constantly bloviates about “personal responsibility”.

4. There are reasons why I am occasionally contemptuous of Christian churches. Here is one of them

This church in Colorado apparently thought it was OK to not report felony sexual abuse of a 12 year old by a Church official because they determined that Biblical counselling would suffice.
I would like to see every person involved in that decision hauled into court. This would include the father of the 12 year old girl, who clearly has no interest in obeying the law, having the church obey the law, and who appears to regard his daughter as church property, a sexual chattel to be abused on request by church leaders.
Seriously. This is basically a conspiracy to cover up felonies.


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