Sinister Kullberg Network

Are you influenced by the sinister Kullberg Network? If you have any conservative Facebook friends, chances are you have been influenced in your thinking by this shadowy group.

The Kullberg network is not a foreign entity. It is a collection of at least 24 Facebook pages apparently run by a small group of people based out of Columbus, Ohio, that purports to represent the views of a diverse cohort of Americans. In many other respects, the network is quite similar to these examples [Russian and Philippine troll farms] of foreign social media manipulation. In the view of  Joshua Tucker, a professor of politics and data science at NYU, the fact that these activities stem from domestic, rather than foreign, actors complicates things. “I think if you came to Facebook and said, ‘Hey, the Russians are doing this,’ they would have taken the pages down,” he told us in a phone interview. So far, Facebook has not responded to our questions or multiple follow-ups about the Kullberg network’s practices, and the network remains online.  ... [Read More]

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This Week’s Book Review – Painting War

I write a weekly book review for the Daily News of Galveston County. (It is not the biggest daily newspaper in Texas, but it is the oldest.) After my review appears on Sunday, I post the previous week’s review here on Sunday.... [Read More]

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“GPS Declassified” in softcover

I just heard that my publisher is releasing a paperback version of my book next spring.  I’m going to try to get them to send an advance copy to Seawriter for him to review in his paper if he’s interested.

I just recorded a podcast with Cold War Conversations which will be released in about two months. https://coldwarconversations.com... [Read More]

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Use a Kayak?

This is for those who kayak and might be looking for a convenient way to transport one or two.  This is the Thule Hullavator, a device that uses gas shocks to lift the kayak up to the top of your vehicle with one finger’s force.  The lashings are first quality, like everything Thule.  Here’s a before and after the lift pair of pix.

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Willing to Negotiate

AMLO is “willing to negotiate.”

Of course he is.   President Trump will get just what he wants, too.   Mexico will dramatically reduce the flow of Salvadoran and Guatemalan “migrants.”   And the tariff will pay for the Wall.... [Read More]

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Why is Setting up WiFi so Inefficient

A couple of months ago, I moved to a new apartment. I had AT&T in my old place and transferred it to my new one. I couldn’t make a reservation for the new place until the previous tenant canceled service because he had AT&T. The installer had to do a lot of searching for connections. Why wouldn’t they have that in the systems since the previous person had AT&T. The whole process was very inefficient. Dime supposedly lives in Japan so it’s hard to blame it on him.

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Saturday Night Science: The Case for Space

“The Case for Space” by Robert ZubrinFifty years ago, with the successful landing of Apollo 11 on the Moon, it appeared that the road to the expansion of human activity from its cradle on Earth into the immensely larger arena of the solar system was open. The infrastructure built for Project Apollo, including that in the original 1963 development plan for the Merritt Island area could support Saturn V launches every two weeks. Equipped with nuclear-powered upper stages (under active development by Project NERVA, and accommodated in plans for a Nuclear Assembly Building near the Vehicle Assembly Building), the launchers and support facilities were more than adequate to support construction of a large space station in Earth orbit, a permanently-occupied base on the Moon, exploration of near-Earth asteroids, and manned landings on Mars in the 1980s.

But this was not to be. Those envisioning this optimistic future fundamentally misunderstood the motivation for Project Apollo. It was not about, and never was about, opening the space frontier. Instead, it was a battle for prestige in the Cold War and, once won (indeed, well before the Moon landing), the budget necessary to support such an extravagant program (which threw away skyscraper-sized rockets with every launch), began to evaporate. NASA was ready to do the Buck Rogers stuff, but Washington wasn’t about to come up with the bucks to pay for it. In 1965 and 1966, the NASA budget peaked at over 4% of all federal government spending. By calendar year 1969, when Apollo 11 landed on the Moon, it had already fallen to 2.31% of the federal budget, and with relatively small year to year variations, has settled at around one half of one percent of the federal budget in recent years. Apart from a small band of space enthusiasts, there is no public clamour for increasing NASA’s budget (which is consistently over-estimated by the public as a much larger fraction of federal spending than it actually receives), and there is no prospect for a political consensus emerging to fund an increase.... [Read More]

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Bear With Me!

OMG you guys!! ( sorry,  just trying to set a tone here..)  Last night I saw the biggest bear I’ve ever seen.  It was on one of our woodland paths, dusk, and I was alone, without even my dog!  I nearly walked into it!

So why am I telling you this, (aside from the fact that I’m now  hopelessly addicted to writing)?  Well: I thought it was remarkable, because I was thinking about bears a lot yesterday, because I mentioned the Elisha story on my Millerite post.  Then I looked it up, an for good measure also read one of those  “Let’s soften the hard stories” commentaries: okay they weren’t really “children”,  they were “hoodlums,” like MS 13. And we don’t know if they were killed by those she-bears, why, they may’ve just suffered some grievous bodily harm—and serves ‘em right, the insolent delinquents!... [Read More]

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Help Me Understand the Situation in Israel!

It sounds like Israel is going to have another election in September because Netanyahu isn’t conservative enough.  Correct?  The main dispute is over whether the ultra-Orthodox should be subject to the military draft.

I read somewhere that when the state was formed, the ultra-Orthodx were not a very large group within Israel, (think of the Amish in this country) and it was believed that giving them certain exemptions wouldn’t be of much national moment.... [Read More]

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