Sunday, February 22, 2015

Geekin' out on a meme pic that is WRONG

While reading a Cracked article, I saw a Star Trek pic that was just all kinds of wrong...

This photo is inaccurate. Losing 39 ships in battle against the Borg at Wolf 359 did NOT leave Starfleet without enough ships to defend the Federation. Starfleet just had so many ships spread out across the galaxy that 39 was all they could muster on such short notice.

Also, they probably built more than a few hundred ships between the Borg Incursion of 2366-67 and the Dominion War in the 2370's. If you remember the battle this pic refers to from the DS9 episode 'Sacrifice of Angels', you might remember Sisko referring to 'Galaxy wings 91 and 93.' That means there's at least 93 wings of Starfleet ships being led by a HUGE Galaxy class starship in the fleet at that time.

Considering that, I'd say that Starfleet put themselves on a war-time footing with ship building after the Borg incident in 2366-67. How else would they have so many ships already in service at the start of the Dominion War? And they must have really ramped up production on Galaxy class ships, too. When the Enterprise NCC-1701-D was launched in 2363, there were only going to be 6 of that class in service. It was so powerful that Starfleet decided they only needed that many. And then, the Romulans came out of decades-long seclusion... The Klingons started getting antsy... The Borg show up... And the list just goes on from there.

And how did Starfleet build so many in only a few years? Well, you have a nation-state that spreads out over 8,000 light years of space with trillions of citizens and they're a Type-2 civilization on the Kardashev scale. Quickly building enough ships to defend the Alpha Quadrant from would-be aggressors would not be an insurmountable task to them. It would probably be analogous to the United States ramping up production of war materials during the War on Terror: VERY costly but, also quite doable.

- Lord Publius

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Vladimir Putin is NOT an Aspie. Period.

I read an article on USA Today this morning, describing various research papers written by civilian contractors for the DoD. The papers claimed that Vladimir Putin must have Asperger's Syndrome. This conclusion was based on the way he walked/talked and his tendency to be VERY methodical in making his decisions. Okay...

Or, maybe, he's just being careful. He may very well be, (like most politicians) quite EVIL but, he's no fool. He realizes that he has a lot of responsibility that comes with his power. You can't act too rashly when you have one of the largest nuclear stockpiles on Earth. (And especially not when your country lost track of so many of those nukes after the fall of Communism in 1991.)

Also, I doubt any of you in the Pentagon or the Beltway really understand the Russian mindset. They have a deeply ingrained paranoia about the West. They are always worried that we will attack them, even though that is pretty unlikely to ever occur. They are so paranoid, often militaristic and quite defiant against us as a defense mechanism, both psychological and political. The reason why is because they once signed a non-aggresion pact with a European country you may have heard of called 'Nazi Germany' and then were attacked by that country. They got thrown into an incredibly bloody, years-long war they weren't prepared for because a western country (or, one more geographically Western than they were) stabbed them in the back.

From when Hitler launched Operation Barbarossa in 1941 until Germany's surrender in 1945, they fought a terribly destructive conflict, largely on their own soil, and lost twenty million people. They haven't trusted the West since. I think they are being too paranoid for their own good but, I can't say that I blame them, either. If your country suffered that kind of misfortune, wouldn't you be really paranoid about anyone that might be coming from that same direction? No wonder they drink so much Vodka... And why Putin is hellbent on 'protecting ethnic Russians wherever they may be'... And annexing parts of Ukraine to create a buffer zone... And (supposedly) trying to rebuild the old Soviet Empire...

Uncle Sam, you wasted your money. He's not an Aspie.

He's far too athletic to be one of us. He's also a lot more comfortable expressing emotion in public than a real Aspie would. Have you never seen him give a speech or address the Russian equivalent of Congress? I sincerely doubt this twisted individual is anywhere near 'the spectrum', let alone an Aspie. PLEASE, for the love of Christ, DON'T lump me into the same proverbial boat as this guy. It would be so humiliating to be considered in the same league as a politician.

Also, if you want to understand the man, talk to him. World peace does not come from the barrel of a gun. It comes from people talking to one another and working out your issues in a civil way.

I don't expect him to ever like us, nor do I expect Washington to fall in love with him. All I would like is for the political bullshit to stop. Neither side should be using their soldiers like pawns on a chessboard, positioning them here or there. We already played that dangerous game for more than 40 years in the last century. Fortunately, no one freaked out and fired that first shot. The Human race does NOT need to put itself through something like that again.

Take it from someone who would know. Putin is crazy alright but, not like you think. He's more 'crazy like a fox' than he is 'crazy because of his neurological wiring', Washington. He's pretending to be nuts so you will be wary of attacking him. I've used the exact same trick many times in many ways and in many situations all across the world. He plays that mind game because he knows it works on Europeans. I'm not sure if he realizes that it wouldn't work with Americans, though.

If anyone is the Aspie here, it's got to be us. America has a tendency to take anything that foreign leaders say as Gospel truth, even when it should be obvious that it's all a bluff. We assume the world is more dangerous than it really is and act accordingly, which is why we have such a huge military and put it to regular use. Remember all the shit that Saddam Hussein used to say? 'Mother of all wars', and all? He was talking smack but, we thought he was serious. As a result, we not only kicked his ass in the Persian Gulf War, we went out of our way to dismantle his military apparatus too. The media tried to play up that war as being the potential start to World War Three but, it was all over in six weeks. After that, the whole world looked at America in a whole new way. We weren't just a country that emerged from World War Two as a victorious Super Power. We were a nation that was so good at fighting wars that it was fucking scary. We had planes invisible to radar, bombs that went straight through your windows, a dozen aircraft carriers (everyone else with carriers in their navy usually has just 1-3) and enough nukes to vaporize Jupiter. Even our allies were a little nervous. Forget cars, computers, jetliners, finance and/or unparalleled agricultural output. As far as the world could tell, Death and Destruction were America's true business!

Seeing that 'Highway of Death' on TV as a 9 year-old child was rather 'interesting', to say the least. Some say the scenes of carnage from that road to Basra is the reason why Bush the Elder stopped that war the very next day. Not only was it horrific, it was also obvious that we had neutralized the Iraqi threat. Saddam had the fourth largest military on Earth, and we tore him to pieces while making it look much easier than it really was too. I can certainly see why so many countries are afraid of American military might and would want to 'act tough' with us. Seeing the U.S. military in action is a lot like seeing the wrath of God. You're never quite the same man you were after seeing that kind of work. The Reaper also certainly looks on with glee whenever we do go to work. I just wish that we weren't so damned eager to jump into virtually any fight we can find, thinking we'll spread freedom with bombing campaigns and invasions. War can remove despotic regimes but, it doesn't create Peace and Liberty. That's a job for genuine diplomacy and free trade. And I also wish that other countries would learn from History and not do anything to antagonize us or talk any shit. As History clearly shows, we can't really tell the difference.

Washington, for the sake of Peace and Freedom in the world, all I ask from you is that you sit down and talk with him. And I don't mean sending that snotty Masshole John Kerry to speak with him at some summit. Sit down with him man-to-man and ask him what he thinks and feels. Get to know him. Establish a genuine working relationship with him. Who knows, he may be more reasonable than you think. Hopefully, the elected leadership in the District of Columbia will also be more reasonable than anyone else thinks too. And I sure hope that I am not hoping for too much...

- Lord Publius