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Saturday, January 27, 2024

Links - 27th January 2024 (2 - Climate Change)

What could happen if we just stopped oil? Six billion might die - "Many of us have been exasperated by the antics of Just Stop Oil protesters. Now, I believe that these are well-meaning and committed to their cause and I am sure that they think that they are trying to save the planet in the best way they can think of – gain publicity, get people talking and influence politicians.  But what would happen if we literally just stopped oil tomorrow and did without the natural resources on which the world, its economies and populations depend? The answer: most likely six billion people would die within a year.    I am going to assume the “oil” in Just Stop Oil means fossil fuels – so oil, gas and coal. I am also going to assume that we have today’s technological knowledge and infrastructure, so we are talking about stopping fossil fuels now, not at some unspecified time in the future... do the nice, well-meaning people of Just Stop Oil understand how the world works, or not? If they do, they are nihilists; if they don’t, then why are they disrupting the smooth running of our society, promoting an extreme course of action of which they have no understanding?   If, by the way, my analysis is wrong, they should enlighten us on how an immediate ban on fossil fuels will allow civilisation to continue and flourish.  To be clear I am not suggesting that the world is forever in the grip of fossil fuels. Far from it.  History tells us that human civilisation is a story of constant change.  Humans are inventive and adaptable, and fossil fuels are also finite. So in due course new, cheap, non-fossil-fuel energy sources will be developed, new ways of storing and transporting energy will be perfected, and fossil fuel use will slowly become a thing of the past; a transition from one world to another – abetter one.  But I suppose the slogan, “Stop oil when the technological and economic conditions allow it, consistent with an improvement in human wellbeing and that of the planet” is not such a catchy phrase."

Tony Heller on X - "The first Winter Olympics was in 1924 and had very little snow. For the next 40 years, almost all Winter Olympics suffered from a lack of snow. History has been rewritten to erase the warmth of the past. #ClimateScam"

Eva Vlaardingerbroek on X - "🇩🇪 ALL EYES ON GERMANY  I’ll be traveling to Berlin next week as the German Farmers have announced that they will launch a protest “larger than the country has ever seen before” on Monday, January 8.   Multiple farmers' associations, the train drivers’ union and the trucking industry have announced they’ll be mobilizing against the federal government's plans to cancel for agricultural diesel, cut vehicle tax exemptions and increase truck tolls and carbon taxes.   There are also countless calls on social media for a general strike against the federal German government - demanding they step down.  Mark my words: There is no doubt that if all of these sectors hold their ground and do not back down as a result of the establishment’s usual intimidation tactics, that they have the power to completely paralyze the country and finally demand change.  This wouldn’t be a turning point just for Germany, but also for the rest of Europe. #nofarmersnofood #Bauernprotest"
The left encourages protest, until it clashes with their agenda

Oli London on X - "German farmers are currently taking part in a massive protest against farming tax hikes by the German government. The mainstream media is hardly reporting on it."

James Melville on X - "The German farmers protest is being manipulatively smeared as “far-right”. It isn’t. It’s people fighting for their livelihoods and standing up against the government - the very things that left-wingers used to show solidarity towards."
mirax on X - "The msm blackout of these protests is interesting too. I have been tracking the coverage or lack thereof since Jan 4. Compare to global coverage of Indian farmers' protests with celebs like Rihanna giving their 2 rupees' worth."

How 'greenlash' is forcing Europe to scale back ambitious net zero policies

Meme - "If this bird was covered in oil, this photo would be posted everywhere *dead bird and wind turbines*"

Robby Starbuck on X - "In 1873 the US government killed 1.5 million buffalo to starve natives so they’d be more dependent on the US government. Now governments all over the world are killing livestock to "meet climate goals". There’s a lesson here. 👀🧐"

Ford is losing $32,000 on every EV sale

The EV Backlash Builds - WSJ - "The Biden Administration keeps throwing around billions in subsidies for electric vehicles, and the press corps keeps hailing them, but consumers don’t seem to want them. The evidence is building that this green industrial policy is a bust... A Consumer Reports survey in November found that new EVs have 79% more problems than internal-combustion cars... People want safe, reliable cars—who would have thought?... None of this is stopping the Biden Administration, as this week the Environmental Protection Agency sent its final rule on auto greenhouse emission standards to the White House for review. This back-door EV mandate will punish Ford and other auto makers if they respond to consumer demand by selling more gas-powered cars. It will also compel the companies to roll out EVs before technological and engineering kinks are worked out. This is a recipe for making EVs less popular, not more. Amid the private jet-set at Davos this week, Biden climate czar John Kerry attributed consumer resistance to EVs to “disinformation.” That’s hilarious. The automobile press couldn’t be more in the tank for EVs. We’ve got nothing against electric vehicles if consumers want them. But the Administration is trying to force them on the public with mandates and subsidies. This misallocation of capital harms consumers and workers. Mr. Biden’s green industrial policy isn’t failing because of bad marketing. It's failing because Americans don’t like the product."

Hertz Is Walking Back A Big Bet On EVs. Here's What's Really Going On - "The company says that it is "rebalancing" the numbers in its fleets, which means selling off a third of its EV fleet and replacing those cars with ICE models... Hertz said that it expects to sell off 20,000 cars in its EV stock, and that process already started as early as last month. The cash generated from the sales of its EV fleet will be pumped back into meeting demand for rental ICE vehicles. This comes on the heels of Hertz’s October announcement that it would be scaling back its EV operations, citing high repair costs and reduced residual value compared to the rest of its vehicles as reasons why its EV rental operations weren’t going so well."
Greedy companies are more evil than greedy, which is why they want to destroy the planet even though electric vehicles are superior and make them more money

Justin Trudeau's naive EV plan hands the keys to China - "Among auto giants, General Motors has been among the truest of believers. For chief executive Mary Barra, EV constitutes the first two letters in evangelism. Don’t let doubt get in the way, just put your faith in faith. But there’s trouble in Motor City. GM has backed off a pledge to sell 400,000 electric vehicles by the middle of 2024. It’s also abandoning a US$5-billion joint plan with Honda Motors to develop more affordable EVs. It’s delaying the start of production on electric trucks at a Michigan plant, and bought out half its 2,000 Buick dealerships after they declined to make the investments needed for an all-EV future. GM suspended operations at its self-driving Cruise unit and is diverting US$10 billion to share buybacks to appease nervous investors. Meanwhile, EV sales are rising, but not at the pace anticipated, resulting in huge backlogs of unsold cars. Ford is either chopping or delaying US$12 billion in EV investments and scaling back a planned battery plant in Michigan. USA Today reported that EV inventories were up 506 per cent from a year ago due to high prices, slowing demand, range anxiety, lack of charging stations and buyers’ growing awareness that EV repair costs can be significantly higher than those for fossil-fuelled cars. U.S. reports show demand heavily concentrated in a few regions, generally well-off populations in urban areas. According to CarGurus Inc., while prices are falling thanks to excess supply, the average new EV still costs 28 per cent more than an internal-combustion rival, and will sit on the lot 24 per cent longer than a year ago. Even Tesla, the overwhelming market leader, felt the need to slash vehicle prices to keep them eligible for government subsidies. While the auto giants can retrench, the little guys are getting creamed. A Wall Street Journal analysis of EV startups found that of 43 companies launched between 2020 and 2022, five have gone bust, and at least 18 others are likely to run out of money by the end of 2024. The remainder includes firms strictly focused on the luxury market, well beyond the reach of most buyers. For reasons left unexplained, Justin Trudeau’s Liberals chose this moment to unveil Ottawa’s new Electric Vehicle Availability Standard, mandating that, as of 2035, all new vehicles sold in Canada must be electric. Only about one Canadian in 10 now owns an electric vehicle, amid signs of waning interest. That didn’t stop Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault from insisting that if someone builds them, buyers will come. Who knows, he may be right, but if so there’s a real chance the factory producing the cars and the batteries that run them will be from a plant located or controlled somewhere in China... In addition to cheap labour and manufacturing capacity, China controls much of the cobalt and rare earth minerals essential to producing EV batteries. About 70 per cent of the world’s cobalt is mined in the Democratic Republic of Congo, one of the globe’s poorest, most corrupt and unstable countries. Of 19 Congo cobalt operations, 15 are owned in whole or part by Chinese powers. So harsh are conditions that mining operations sometimes require military protection. Beijing works hard to protect and expand its dominance, recently imposing a ban on the export of technology for processing rare earth minerals, another vital battery input it dominates... A 2023 CSIS report warned that gains for China in global EV markets represents a threat to jobs and industrial competitiveness in Europe and North America. “Increased dependencies on China carry risks,” it noted, given China’s record of using its economic clout “to punish countries that challenge its position in international affairs.” As well, China is by far the world’s biggest greenhouse gas emitter and continues to burn vast amounts of coal. Data group Global Energy Monitor calculates China is building six times as many new coal plants as the rest of the world combined. Flooding the world with EVs produced by burning coal hardly helps fight climate change. Maybe it won’t happen — maybe Europe or the U.S. or even Canada will find new sources of vital minerals and develop the means and technology (not to mention environmental approval) to extract them competitively with China’s vast low-wage population. Maybe prices can be lowered so people with lower incomes can also buy vehicles after 2035. Maybe someone will sort out how millions of people in high-rise condo towers and apartment blocks will all be able to power their vehicles without individual power stations. In any case, the Trudeau government says it must happen within 12 years. If it doesn’t, we have no known Plan B. And should the new dawn prove to be beckoning just beyond a cliff? The Liberals are telling us to just have faith in faith."

Interest in EVs is down as Canada aims to increase sales: AutoTrader - "AutoTrader, Canada’s largest automotive marketplace, released a search data report that shows only 56 per cent of car shoppers who do not own an EV are open to purchasing one for their next vehicle, down from 68 per cent in 2022... The top reasons Canadians gave for refusing to consider going electric are all economic. “EV prices generally tend to be 15 to 20 per cent higher than a comparable gas-powered vehicle,” said AutoTrader editor-in-chief Jodi Lai. “That extra cost is not something that a lot of Canadians can stomach right now.”"

Tesla drivers can't charge their cars because stations have frozen over - "After temperatures of -18°C moved into the windy city, photos showed many of Elon Musk’s vehicles stranded with dead batteries outside of charging stations. Tesla recommends maintaining a charge level above 20% when not plugged in to minimize the impact of cold temperatures on the battery. But many of the vehicles waited so long in line for a functional charger that their batteries died in the frigid conditions. Tesla has come under criticism in the past for failure to operate in cold conditions, with many of the vehicle doors freezing shut. Electric car batteries generally don’t fare too well in the cold, with experts recommending heating up the vehicle’s interior while the battery is recharging... TikTok user Domenick Nati showed his dashboard listing the temperature as -7°C and 19 miles remaining until the battery dies. When Nati tried plugging his car into a charging station by Lynchburg Regional Airport in Virginia, the vehicle’s screen read: ‘Battery is heating – keep charge cable inserted.’ Two hours later, the same message remained. During Christmas in 2022, Teslas in Hertfordshire were lined up for hours waiting to charge their cars."

Electric cars 'the best vehicle' in frigid temperatures, Sask. advocates say
Fast chargers stop working in Yellowknife due to cold weather

EVs Lose 30% Of Their Range On Average In The Winter Vs. Ideal Conditions
If you don't support electric cars, you hate the planet and are a science denier
EV defenders claim that ICE cars lose range in the cold too, but according to the US department of energy going from 25 degrees (celsius) to -7 degrees only reduces mileage by 15% - half that of electric cars (plus for EVs, that's at 0 degrees vs ideal conditions, so at -7 it will be even worse)

Steve Milloy on X - "The WaPo reports that the "clean energy" political problem for Biden is that there is a "lack of public awareness of how these technologies work."  I don't know how many billions of dollars of Inflation Reduction Act money have been wasted so far, but I can tell you:  1. The EV industry is failing. 2. The offshore wind industry is flailing.  3. The electricity grid is becoming more unstable. 4. Emissions have increased. 5. The weather has remained the same.  There is no awareness because these "technologies": don't work as advertised."

Thread by @energybants on Thread Reader App – Thread Reader App - "Incredible: German electricity demand has fallen to the lowest levels since before reunification in 1990, as its economy falters.  Germany intentionally turned off its extraordinarily cheap and reliable baseload nuclear power, rapidly, during a generational energy crisis.  Putin didn't make them do it.  America didn't make them do it.  Even German public opinion has turned dramatically back in favor of nuclear.  German leaders made this choice, to turn them off and keep them off.  Look at these graphs of annual electricity. It's like Germany is committing WW2-style bombing raids against its own infrastructure.  If Germany were electrifying, for either climate or growth reasons, then we would expect electricity demand to grow, not fall.  We should be seeing all time records in electricity production and demand, not the lowest numbers in over three decades.  Now electricity is too expensive for many industries to justify using for expanding or even maintaining production, so electricity demand is dropping.  But Germany's own generation of electricity is plunging even faster than its demand is, turning Germany from a net exporter to a net importer of power.  Many commenters have celebrated the falling energy costs in Germany for this year and next. But those falling costs are coming along with falling demand for power, not increasing demand.  And costly renewable subsidies are no longer paid directly on power bills, but instead from the national budget, lowering the apparent cost of power even further, which should be stimulating demand.  Yet electricity remains so persistently expensive relative to pre-crisis years that, in combination with expensive natural gas, it just isn't worth it for Germany's major energy consumers.  Germany's courts have, for now, rejected adding more and more subsidies for energy production infrastructure to be paid for by national debt.  Even though this is a crisis for Germany, the courts seem wise in rejecting subsidies for expensive new energy when cheap nuclear plants could just be turned back on.  Leading opposition parties have already stated their intention of restarting Germany's nuclear plants should they win power.  This would take about a year each, but each nuclear plant would prop up a meaningful fraction of Germany's bleeding industrial sector.  In my view, there is no longer any other budget-neutral or budget-positive energy move available to German leaders, without destroying Germany's climate agreements to turn on lignite coal full blast.
I have to keep writing this over and over and over again:  France badly mismanaged its nuclear fleet as it tried to foolishly ape German energy policy.  France has had some of worst nuclear fleet availability on Earth.  Germany had among the highest. I've been yelling about France's energy self-sabotage for years.  I used the phrase "Vichy Energy" to describe France's policies in this podcast warning about France, Germany, and Nord Stream, from more than a year before the full-scale invasion of Ukraine. How fascinating, two countries that spent years sharing Germany's idiotic energy plan, who started ripping out their own nuclear fleets despite having a much higher reliance on nuclear, are struggling like Germany?  What an astonishing coincidence"
Borislav Boev on X - "Textbook deindustrialization. They destroyed their conventional energy sources, not only nuclear, but also coal and gas, which provided energy security and stable prices for the industry."
All the nuclear haters have a lot of interesting copes in the replies. But degrowth is popular among the left, after all

Persephone on X - "GERMANY - oops… German Energy grid operators are given legal powers to restrict power to heat pumps & EV chargers from 2024. To preserve energy. At this point Net Zero is beyond a joke. Stuck in cold houses & with no transport. This is a vision of your future. Reject it 🔥"
James Lindsay, anti-Fascist on X - "Degrowth means starving while you freeze to death in the dark."

Will We Learn from the Deindustrialization of Germany? - "Some people will blame Germany’s need to return to coal mining on the Russian invasion of Ukraine, but that isn’t the case. Germany’s downward spiral began in 2011, when, in the wake of the Fukushima Daiichi power plant meltdown in Japan, then-Chancellor Angela Merkel opted to phase out Germany’s nuclear power stations (as well as its coal-fired power stations).  “Now we have to stop using gas cookers after 5 p.m.,” my German friend tells me. “Never in my lifetime have we had to do this before. And this is in the south! What happens when the last three reactors close?”...   Research institutes are predicting factory closures caused by the ongoing energy crisis, and the state-owned bank Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau has warned that Germany faces “an era of declining prosperity.” The head of the German Trade Union Confederation, Yasmin Fahimi, warns of deindustrialization and significant layoffs.  Few are mincing their words. Power tools entrepreneur Nikolas Stihl warns that “the danger of de-industrialization cannot be dismissed out of hand.” German industry has been struggling for some time, and it may never recover. Thanks to soaring energy prices, 530 workers at the ArcelorMittal steelworks in Hamburg have been working reduced hours since October 2022. That was just the beginning.  Head of the German chemicals trade body Verband der Chemischen Industrie, Markus Steilemann, has commented that Germany risks “turning from an industrial country into an industrial museum.”  This was the dream: Energiewende, or “energy turnaround”—Germany’s plan to run on only renewable energy by 2038. Integral to this was complete closure of nuclear power plants, because the German Greens don’t like them.  Problems were identified along the way. In 2016, an analysis by Agora Energiewende found that the aim of a 55–60 percent share of renewable energy in gross electricity consumption by 2035 was “unachievable” with the plans for renewables expansion.   Germans were advised that they would likely miss their own Energiewende targets. A study in 2019 asserted that “Germany can still prevent 16,000 deaths and 1100 MtCO2 emissions by 2035 by reducing coal instead of eliminating nuclear as planned.” But they blundered on.   Germans’ commitment to close nuclear power stations was actively harming their climate ambitions. Still, they continued to shut down reactors and send nuclear energy workers home.  In 2019, Germany’s Federal Court of Auditors criticized the €160 billion cost of Energiewende over the previous five years, stating that the expenditure was “in extreme disproportion to the results.” At that point, the cost of electricity to the German consumer was almost double that of French electricity, where nuclear energy provides the bulk of their supply. German electricity prices were among the highest in Europe.   Another study found that if Germany had postponed the nuclear phase out and phased out coal instead, it could have saved 1,100 lives a year, and $12 billion in social costs...   Many Germans remain hopeful that renewables will fill the energy gap. Yet the wind industry itself has admitted that Germany will need to erect six wind turbines a day to meet its 2030 goal. That would require as much as 3,300 metric tons of steel per day (almost half an Eiffel Tower). At the moment, the country erects less than one wind turbine a day.  Hoping and dreaming are not enough. Data clearly show that no industrialized nation in the world has been able to decarbonize without nuclear energy, except where there is a geographically available abundance of hydropower.  The focus of much of the world over the past year has been on energy: sources, availability, and rationing. But when humankind is energy-poor, we lose out in other ways too...   Germany’s biggest mistake was ignoring the data along the way because its leaders had wedded themselves to wishful thinking and ideology, which made them blind to negative results. Politicians could not accept that their experiment had failed. In this way, they rejected the learning process that science can offer us, just as they rejected clean energy because they don’t like it."
Clearly they need even more renewables

De-industrialisation in Germany dramatically reduces emissions in 2023 - "the headline reduction in emissions has more to do with Germany’s economic slowdown than successful implementation of green policies... Accounting for about a quarter of German GDP – twice the level of other large European powers – some 10% of heavy industry has been forced to close down or dramatically reduce production.  German chemical companies are now very cautious when it comes to investing at home: around 40% of them will reduce their investments in Germany in 2023 and 2024, according to recent industry survey. However, the majority of companies are planning to increase foreign investments or leave completely.   Up to a third of Germany’s heavy industry is either planning to move, or has already started the process of moving, abroad to lower-cost markets. The biggest hope for the chemical industry is China, where almost half of global chemical demand already comes from.  The German industrial lobby has said that German heavy industry should start recovering in 2025, but that assumes energy prices will fall to previous levels. A recent IMF white paper concluded that the higher prices, caused by the remake of Europe’s energy markets and the end of cheap Russian gas imports, means the higher energy prices are likely to be a permanent change that will fundamentally affect Germany’s business model."

Jack Mintz: Axe the carbon tax, OK, but keep paying the rebates - "I have always argued that the carbon tax is better policy than the existing pancake approach, which stacks one inefficient, soak-the-poor carbon mandate, regulation and subsidy on top of another until even the relevant ministers forget how many anti-carbon initiatives we have. On the other hand, if our largest trading partner, the U.S., isn’t going to price carbon, maybe axing the tax makes sense. But if we do that, do the rebates have to go, too? Analysis does typically assume rebates go hand-in-hand with the carbon tax. And if you look only at the tax and the rebates, Ottawa is probably right: the rebates in large part offset the tax. But Poilievre takes a broader view. He cites a 2022 Parliamentary Budget Office study that also looked at the effects of the carbon tax on household incomes as a result of economic restructuring. It gives different results. For example, it estimates that for the average Ontario household the fiscal “cost” — carbon taxes and related GST effects net of rebates — is actually a net gain of $113 by 2030-31. But add in the likely economic effects on employment and investment income and that gain turns into a net loss of $1,145 in 2030-31... As of this week, Saskatchewan is exempting all heating from carbon taxation. The federal government could by rights respond by reducing rebates to Saskatchewan households. But with rebates to Atlantic Canadians seemingly unaffected by the heating oil exemption, any such response would be — and would certainly be seen in the West as — regionally unfair. The Trudeau government is not the first to leave rebates alone to avoid upsetting voters. When the GST was originally introduced on Jan. 1, 1991, Ottawa provided a low-income tax credit to offset the impact of a general tax on consumption. Yet, when the Harper government reduced the GST rate from seven to five per cent, it did not lower the credit accordingly. Instead, the credit has been boosted over the years due to restructuring and inflation adjustments...  One thought is that they should be continued as an offset to other carbon policies that raise energy costs for households (including in B.C. and Quebec). Though the Conservatives may well axe the carbon tax, they would likely leave in place carbon levies on high-emitter companies that the provinces currently apply... If rebates were targeted to modest-income and rural Canadians instead of all of us, the policy could be much less expensive. Even better: why not integrate the rebate with the GST tax credit to offset both sales, excise and other climate levies, enabling a pool of credits to be income-tested that would reduce marginal effective tax rates on workers with modest incomes?"

FischerKing on X - "Think a lot of what drives climate fanaticism is a desire for control. Leftists, typically atheists, are uncomfortable with the idea of a system so complex and unfathomable that they can’t do anything about it. So they focus on a single variable, CO2, and build entire theories/models around it. Which gives them a mission, a sense of purpose, and the illusion that life and the future are in their own hands. The reality of being always at the whim of forces we cannot direct or understand is too frightening for these people. It’s similar with their attraction for centrally directed economies - their attraction to socialism, Marxism, communism."

Kirk Lubimov on X - "The current temperature in Calgary is -35 in Calgary and -34 in Edmonton.  Solar is generating nothing. Wind can't even get above 0.5% capacity only 5 windfarms out of 45 producing anything.  I don't think people understand how far we are from be able to rely on "green" energy and how much $ it will take."
The left claim that the problem is that there isn't enough renewable energy in the system

Kat Kanada on X - "Apparently, there is another name for "climate change" and that name is Brian Paré. "Quebec man pleads guilty to starting 14 forest fires" 🚨🚨🚨"
Wilfred Reilly on X - "Remember the "wild conservative claim" that the pattern of the Canadian and PNW forest fires looked a lot like arson?"

Wide Awake Media on X - "Key member of the WEF's 'Board of Trustees' and deputy PM of Canada, Chrystia Freeland, openly declares war on the concept of democracy, in the name of tackling "climate change".  "Our shrinking glaciers, and our warming oceans, are asking us wordlessly but emphatically, if democratic societies can rise to the existential challenge of climate change."  Democracy is FAR from perfect, and what we have now―globalist uniparties taking turns at implementing the exact same globalist Net Zero/Agenda 2030 policies, while pretending to be political opponents―can barely be called democracy in the first place, but the fact that these globalist puppets now feel brazen enough to openly call for an end even to the façade they claim is democracy, is concerning to say the least."
Why elites love obsessing about climate change so much

Allowed on Facebook: can't please a woman

Facebook says, on manual review, that you can insult someone by saying "if you can't please a woman just say that my guy":

Addendum: Odd. Facebook claims that you shouldn't "shame private individuals".

Links - January 27th 2024 (1 - Critical Race Theory)

Meme - "You just don't understand Critical Race theory"
"If you understood it you'd agree with me"
"obviously you are reading the wrong source material"
"you must be a racist"

Can You Teach Children to be Anti-Racist? - "In 1935, Richard Clarke Cabot, a professor of clinical medicine and social ethics at Harvard University, began one of the first randomized controlled experiments in the field of social science. In Cabot’s ambitious study, 650 underprivileged boys from Cambridge Massachusetts and the neighboring suburb of Somerville were selected into either a treatment or control group. The treatment group received counselling and a wide-ranging program delivered by these counsellors that included home visits, tutoring, and a variety of field trips and activities. The control group boys received none of these special services. Follow-up studies in the subsequent two decades found pretty much no effect from the program. A later analysis in the 1970s by Professor Joan McCord found that the boys involved in the program did worse on a number of key outcomes than boys in the control group. For instance, they were more likely to be alcoholic, dissatisfied at work and to commit more than one crime.  This seems baffling. Surely, the counsellors had the best of intentions. How could a program of this kind be harmful? McCord proposed four possibilities—a kind of culture clash between the middle-class world of the counsellors and the boys’ families; the creation of a dependency relationship between the boys and their counsellors; a labelling effect where the boys in the project internalized a negative self-image; and a failure to reach expectations that had been raised by participating in the project.  McCord’s analysis and ideas have been challenged by some, but the possibility her work raises—that well-intended interventions can have negative consequences—should be at the forefront of the minds of anyone introducing a new social intervention. And that brings us to Racism. No Way, an anti-racism teaching program developed by the government of the Australian state of New South Wales for use in its public schools... Interestingly, the Racism. No Way resources note that white privilege is a “controversial topic.”... White privilege is a controversial concept for a number of reasons. Firstly, it reframes discrimination faced by non-white people, such as being harassed while shopping, by flipping it and making the absence of this discrimination a privilege. Secondly, it seemingly ignores what could be argued as the far more significant effect of social class on individual outcomes. Thirdly, it risks labelling young white people and driving them towards more of a white identity. And an increased sense of white identity is not necessarily a good thing in a society such as Australia... Australian students with East Asian heritage, for instance, tend to do rather well in the Australian education system. Do they have a form of privilege too?  The standard response of activists on Twitter when faced with such questions is that: 1) the questions themselves are an expression of, and evidence for, white fragility, an “outward display of emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and behaviors such as argumentation, silence, and leaving the stress-inducing situation”; and 2) the idea of an Asian Australian “model minority” is a trope wheeled-out by those who are opposed to tackling racism. Of course, neither response actually answers the question... Unfortunately, teachers do not tend to have the luxury of avoiding or shouting-down their students’ questions... .  The basic problem is a broad assumption on the part of the public in general, and activists in particular, that pretty much everything is teachable. Just as we can teach children multiplication facts, we assume we can teach them the attitudes to the world that we want them to have. In reality, it is far more complicated than that"

Mythinformed on X - "A University of Illinois professor is asked twice on whether or not to disclose that she is teaching Critical Race Theory. Both times she suggests don’t name it, just do it."
ACRL RBMS IOC/DC: Integrating Critical Race Theory and Teaching with Primary Sources - YouTube
Damn right wing misinformation!
She's actually explicitly asked how to smuggle it into the curriculum when you encounter resistance and wholeheartedly endorses that

Meme - Wilfred Reilly: "I'm not sure this is a win for Jeet. The question being asked here, DURING THE COLD WAR, is whether U.S. institutions had to hire Communists and anti-USA social radicals. The answer was basically "Yes," and 18% of social scientists today ID as Marxists."
Jeet Heer @HeeJeet: "The original war against Critical Race Theory & (((Red Professors))). DO COLLEGES HAVE TO HIRE RED PROFESSORS?
Parents can rid campuses of communists"

Dalton headmaster quits while Brearley dad writes scathing letter - "Dalton School’s Jim Best announced he was leaving Friday to pursue “other exciting and inspiring opportunities” after 16 years at the school. His departure came after months of controversy at the Upper East Side academic bastion over the school’s “anti-racism” focus.  At the same time, a father at the equally prestigious, $54,000-a-year Brearley School sent a scathing, nearly 1700-word letter to the institution’s roughly 600 families over Brearley’s “obsession with race.”  The letter by Andrew Gutmann, first published in Bari Weiss’ Substack, explained why he was pulling his daughter out of the Upper East Side school after seven years. She started there in kindergarten.  “It should be abundantly clear to any thinking parent that Brearley has completely lost its way,” Gutmann wrote. “The administration and the Board of Trustees have displayed a cowardly and appalling lack of leadership by appeasing an anti-intellectual, illiberal mob.”...   Brearley head of school fired back Friday with her own missive to the school’s families, calling Gutmann’s letter “deeply offensive and harmful.”  “This afternoon, I and others who work closely with Upper School students met with more than one hundred of them, many of whom told us that they felt frightened and intimidated by the letter and the fact that it was sent directly to our homes,” Jane Fried wrote. “Our students noted that as this letter, which denies the presence of systemic racism, crossed their doorways, the evidence of ongoing racism – systemic or otherwise – is daily present in our headlines.”   Gutmann told the Post Saturday that he stood by his letter and expressed scorn for Fried’s contention that upper school students would be “frightened” by a letter. Gutmann listed a total of 10 “objections” in his screed. Specifically he railed against “mandatory anti-racism training for parents.” He also decried the school’s “vacuous, inappropriate, and fanatical use of words such as equity, diversity and inclusiveness.  “If Brearley’s administration was truly concerned about so-called ‘equity,’ it would be discussing the cessation of admissions preferences for legacies, siblings, and those families with especially deep pockets,” Gutmann wrote.  “If the administration was genuinely serious about ‘diversity,’ it would not insist on the indoctrination of its students, and their families, to a single mindset, most reminiscent of the Chinese Cultural Revolution. Instead, the school would foster an environment of intellectual openness and freedom of thought.”  He criticized the school for gutting the traditional curriculum and censoring books while repeatedly telling parents that its first priority is the “safety” of the children. “For goodness sake, Brearley is a school, not a hospital!”  Gutmann said he most resented how “Brearley has begun to teach what to think, instead of how to think.”... an anonymous group of parents sent a letter to other school families in January protesting Dalton’s race-based policies.  “Every class this year has had an obsessive focus on race and identity, ‘racist cop’ reenactments in science, ‘de-centering whiteness’ in art class, learning about white supremacy and sexuality in health class,” the missive stated. “Wildly inappropriate, many of these classes feel more akin to a Zoom corporate sensitivity-training than to Dalton’s intellectually engaging curriculum.”  Tensions first began running high in December when Dalton issued an “anti-racism” manifesto written by faculty members.  The document called for the hiring of 12 diversity officers and an overhaul of the entire curriculum to better reflect social justice imperatives."
All the conservatives claiming public education is the problem have it wrong
Of course, these people terrified by a letter keep going on about "white fragility"

Action Civics: Joe Biden Set to Push Critical Race Theory on U.S. Schools | National Review - "Biden’s Department of Education has just released the text of a proposed new rule establishing priorities for grants in American History and Civics Education programs. That rule gives priority to grant “projects that incorporate racially, ethnically, culturally, and linguistically diverse perspectives.” The rule goes on to cite and praise the New York Times’ “landmark” 1619 Project, as well as the work of Critical Race Theorist Kendi, as leading examples of the sort of ideas the Biden administration wants to spread.  The programs immediately targeted by Biden’s new priority criteria for American history and civics grants are small. Once in place, however, those criteria will undoubtedly influence the much larger and vastly more dangerous “Civics Secures Democracy Act.” That bill would appropriate $1 billion a year, for six years, for history and civic education...   One of the problems with the new, ultra-woke Illinois teaching standards mentioned earlier is that they impose Chicago’s radicalism on conservative districts downstate."

Peel teacher says school board made him attend ‘toxic’ Critical Race Theory session - "A Peel District School Board (PDSB) teacher says he and other educators were forced to attend a “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion” (DEI) session containing Critical Race Theory (CRT), attacks on white people and claims that merit and objectivity are linked to “whiteness.”... He said the panel took place in September 2020 as part of mandatory professional development...   The panel featured four black PDSB employees, including vice-principal Melissa Wilson. In her introduction, Wilson said her academic practice “is informed by Critical Race Theory, anti-colonial education and black feminist methodologies.”... Wilson is heard making several controversial remarks about race.  “We were all born into a racist society,” claimed Wilson...   The teacher also told True North he believes only a minority of educators support CRT – but that the minority is vocal and intimidating. “The vocal minority speaks and everybody else just sits silently hoping to get through it, hoping to not say something that’s gonna get them in trouble.”   He believes it’s time to stop imposing CRT and DEI ideology and instead focus on students. “We need to refocus on lifting all students up and making sure that what we are doing is in the best interests of all kids in our care.”  In the past, Ontario teachers have faced investigations for opposing CRT.  In March 2022, Ottawa high school teacher Chanel Pfahl was placed under investigation by the Ontario College of Teachers after she made remarks and postings opposing CRT in schools on Facebook."

Gov employees want those who resist anti-racism training “taken out” - "A recent survey of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) employees found a desire among some public sector workers to see their fellow colleagues who resisted or even “subtly protested” mandatory anti-racism training fired or not hired to the department in the first place...   One of the primary takeaways was that the government take steps to make “anti-racism values” a “prerequisite for hiring and promotions.”   “Many add that this must be backed by a willingness to remove employees who do not meet these criteria,” wrote the report’s authors.   One survey participant complained that they were “not convinced” the government was taking anti-racism seriously because there were people who reacted negatively to training which made them “hardline racists” according to the anonymous IRCC employee.   “There are some people who are true hardline racists. It’s the way they react, subtly protesting things,” said the anonymous IRCC worker. Another IRCC employee said that “some people need to be taken out” for not complying with the federal government’s anti-racism mandate.   “Some people do need to be fired, not just, ‘Oh, let’s go train.’ If you are a problem, you are a legal liability, and some people need to be taken out,” said another IRCC employee.   “There are people who are extremely cynical. I see it in the trainings. We need to weed those people out. If you don’t support this, don’t work at our department,” a different interviewee claimed. In 2021, the IRCC adopted its “Anti-Racism Strategy 2.0” to tackle the issue of so-called systemic racism within Canada’s immigration system. Some of the initiatives include race-based hiring initiatives, mandatory anti-racism training, data collection on ethnicity and other programs.   As reported by True North last year, the program included an admission that the purpose was to “permanently embed” far-left woke ideology into Canada’s immigration system.   Participants of the latest survey, however, wanted to see the IRCC go even further in its efforts to root our alleged racism within the department. One interviewee called on the department to create “some kind of test” to root our supposed racists from the application process."
Clearly, civil service bias is a paranoid right wing conspiracy theory disinformation myth

Schools call math racist and the flag offensive, time for a clean up | Toronto Sun - "The Canadian flag is now offensive to some of the powers that be in Ontario’s education system. Last week, a school principal sent home a letter warning parents that their child was about to be offered a free Canadian flag and if they didn’t want to receive one, they should send the attached form back... We have seen school boards across the province import American anti-racism training and other curriculum aids that are fully steeped in the radical critical race theory. These materials, filled with American spellings, history lessons and examples don’t deal with the very different experiences of Black and Indigenous communities in Canada.  They are adopted by activists here, not because they will help but because the materials match the politics of the activist/consultant introducing them to the system... The now former head of Ontario’s public service called the entire provincial civil service a “White supremacist” organization in an official report last year."
We're still told that liberals don't hate their countries

The Black Lives Matter Curriculum Has an Unintended Lesson - The Atlantic - "In a recent article on the Black Lives Matter at School curriculum in Evanston, I quoted Evanston parents who favor diversity, racial equality, and inclusiveness but object to lessons that they believe cross a line into indoctrination. All the parents I interviewed would be quoted only anonymously, out of fear that they would be harassed online or even lose their jobs... when we got here in 2018, within the first year, my children were being taught about white supremacy and white privilege and that all white people were rich and racist. My son and daughter came home like, What is this?... My children have always been so proud of who they are. Then all of a sudden they started to question themselves because of what they were taught after arriving here. My son has wanted to be a lawyer since he was 11. Then one day he came home and told me, “But Mommy, there are these systems put in place that prevent Black people from accomplishing anything.” That’s what they’re teaching Black kids: that all of this time for the past 400 years, this is what [white people have] done to you and your people. The narrative is, “You can’t get ahead.” Of course I want my children to know about slavery and Jim Crow. But I want it to be balanced out with the rest of the truth. They’re not taught about Black people who accomplished things in spite of white supremacy; or about the Black people today who got ahead, built things, achieved things; and those who had opportunities that their ancestors fought for... One day my daughter told me she was taught that all white people are privileged and part of a system of white supremacy. My son said the same thing... I’ve spent a lot of time in Central Africa because my dad is from the Congo. And some of the propaganda that’s being spread right now here in Evanston is similar to some of the divisiveness that took place in Rwanda before the massacre... The education system tends to erase or mute Black people from different backgrounds and experiences. They make this assumption that all Black people are a monolith—they all speak the same way, think the same way, and conduct themselves in the same way.  Showing up on time has nothing to do with being white. It’s something that you’re taught or not taught. My father taught me at a very early age to keep my word. If you say that you’re going to be somewhere at some time, be there. What system of white supremacy was he influenced by?... certain elements of our community are threatening to get people fired. Even if someone just poses a question, or expresses a conflicting view, you’re immediately labeled a part of the problem, a white supremacist, and people will say, “Find out where they work.”  If you’re a Black person who says what I say, you get attacked too. Now, I’m independent. I work for myself. So who is going to fire me? But what are we telling our children, who will one day lead our society, when we show them that if you pose a question, and if someone doesn’t agree with you, maybe they’re going to go after your job?"

Meme - James Lindsay, wears cool shoes: "Anytime you hear Marxists talking about "true history" or "honest history," what they mean is revising history and adding a layer of Marxist interpretation to cherry-picked historical facts to advance the cause of Marxism. That's what "true" means in Marxist language."
Truth is usually taken to mean correspondence of an idea to the world outside thought. However, following Hegel, Marxists take truth to be something that may be said of a social formation or social practice itself. The truth of a social practice is always relative, since, as Goethe said: "All that exists deserves to perish" - sooner or later, everything turns out to be false. See Engels' discussion of this in Ludwig Feuerbach, and the End of Classical German Philosophy.
Some philosophical currents believe that the truth of an idea can be established by logical deduction from "clear ideas." In general, each current has its characteristic criterion of truth: for Rationalism it is Reason; for Empiricism it is Observation and Experiment; Pragmatism makes practice the criterion of truth, but like Empiricism, pragmatism knows only immediate, individual action and misses the cultural and historical content of social practice. If the claim that "practice is the criterion of truth" is to have any content more profound than "the truth of the pudding is in the eating," then it depends on the notion of truth (as objectively inhering in the object itself) and practice (as social-historical practice within the totality"
This is another explanation of the relationship between post-modernism and post-Marxism

Meme - ".@PburgSchools is reportedly teaching white students that they're privileged because they're white and that power structures which white people dictate, marginalize people of color. .@PburgSchools is teaching kids that they're guilty simply for being white"
"Why is this in the school? This is the 10th grade English class, WHY? ENGLISH CLASS
"Intersectionality: You can never fully separate parts of people's identity because each category attributes to who they are"
"Race Lens: How do people of different races experience the world differently?
Analytical lens that examines existing power structures, which are based on white privilege and perpetuates the marginalization of people of color"

Think intersectionality and critical race theory aren’t a threat to Jews? Think again - "a new lawsuit about ethnic studies in Los Angeles illustrates not only how radicals are trying to use the public education system to impose their toxic theories on schoolchildren but the deceptive manner they are using to do it. It also shows that the Jewish stakes in the battle over CRT are much higher than many people understand.  The background to this case—in which the public-interest law firm, the Deborah Project, has sued the “Liberated Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum et al” on behalf of the Concerned Jewish Parents and Teachers of Los Angeles—involves a fight that most of the organized Jewish community thought they had already won... Those who were behind the drive to install ethnic-studies courses in schools were dedicated to using public education to have CRT and intersectional ideology go mainstream. That meant that it was more than likely that the approved curriculum would be manipulated by extremists to do exactly what Newsom and the California legislature had thought they had stopped.  As Deborah Project legal director Lori Lowenthal Marcus laid out in an article in the Los Angeles-based Jewish Journal, what’s been going on is that a group promoting something they call the “Liberated Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum, have with the help of the teachers union in Los Angeles been working covertly to have courses taught in the schools conform to a worldview in which leftist ideas about the need to resist “empire, white supremacy, racism, patriarchy, cisheteropatriarchy, capitalism, ableism and anthropocentrism” became the focus of education in California.  As JNS reports, this effort centers on having ethnic studies only touch on black, Latino, Native Americans, and Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. The latter group includes people from the Middle East but pointedly excludes Jews. It sets aside the long history of oppression, religious hatred and ethnic cleansing carried out against Jews because, according to the CRT worldview, Jews are white and therefore privileged oppressors.   What happened was that a number of radicals behind this curriculum have, with the help of the United Teachers of Los Angeles, sought to bypass rules about transparency and public accountability, and impose their own CRT-inspired agenda on ethnic-studies courses. As Marcus discovered during the course of her investigation, the Liberated curriculum group advised teachers to “fly under the radar” and hide their goals, methods and details about their course material only to those administrators, teachers and parents who were ready to back their transformation of the schools into bases for leftist activism.   This would be deeply troubling under any circumstances since, like so many other efforts to use the schools to mainstream these toxic theories, such as curricula based on The New York Times’ fallacious “1619 Project,” their ultimate purpose is to instill hatred for America and to place race at the center of every discussion. This is antithetical to the notion—put forward by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.—that promoting equality and judging people by “the content of their character rather than the color of their skin” is the goal Americans should strive toward. Many liberal Jews have felt free to support the Black Lives Matter movement after the death of George Floyd in 2020. They regarded the way CRT and intersectionality labeled Israel and Jews as possessors of “white privilege” and belonging to the oppressor class as a peripheral issue, even if it did grant a permission slip for anti-Semitism.  The Deborah Project’s lawsuit demonstrated that hatred for Israel and contempt for Jews—even for liberal groups like the Anti-Defamation League, Jewish federations and community relations councils—are integral to the campaign for Liberated Ethnic Studies. Its advocates regard demonizing Israel as a priority and think of Jews who are even minimally supportive of the Jewish state’s right to exist as supporters of “white supremacy” whose influence must be eradicated.   That these ideas are inherently illiberal is obvious but becomes even more explicit when supporters of Liberated studies in teachers’ unions and elsewhere in the educational establishment say they are opposed to “multiculturalism.” They aren’t interested in actual diversity, which means celebrating the broad mosaic of American ethnic groups from all backgrounds. What they want is a curriculum that is solely focused on an anti-democratic narrative in which certain groups deemed to be victims must be advanced while everyone else is deemed a privileged oppressor who must be penalized... That radical groups supported by the LA teacher’s union are doing this is a disgrace. But it is also, as the Deborah Project’s lawsuit shows, a violation of federal and state laws that prohibit such blatant discrimination."

Free Black Thought on X - "Ethnic Studies "tells kids of color they are stuck in a caste system based on race. It tells kids that 'institutions chronically favor white people & disadvantage people of color.' This curriculum will not help kids of color succeed. All it does is remove any reason to try." 🔥"

Meme - Frank McCormick I Chalkboard Heresy: "It's amazing that despite leaking documents from my school district showing that our "Equity Department" was training staff in Critical Race Theory, non-teachers like David accuse me of lying. Maybe I was just one of the few teachers telling the truth?"
Greetings: I hope all is well. As a follow-up to our meeting today, please note:
1. Please review critical race theory (see link below). Please send me any questions or concerns.
Link: What Is Critical Race Theory? Definition, Principles, and Applications
What Is Critical Race Theory? Definition, Principles, and Applications
Critical race theory emerged in the 1980s among legal scholars seeking to challenge the idea that the United Sta..."
Dave von Ebers @DavefromTR1: "Frankie's totally unhinged. He went from lying outright about "critical race theory" in public schools to obsessively tweeting about gay and trans kids. No wonder he couldn't hack it as a teacher. What a sad little man."
Liberals tell us that Critical Race Theory is not being taught in schools, so they must be right and anyone who disagrees must be lying

Paul Rossi on X - "Most white people have no interest in "being white" in any active sense and would be happy to continue deracializing, but CRT activists, by insisting that whiteness is unconsciously enacted in every situation, are creating a double bind whereby active white racial consciousness is growing in society.   If positive white identity grows, they win, because they can say, "See, white supremacy is a problem". If negative white identity grows, they win, because they win converts. Win-win for them, lose-lose for everyone else. Under CRT and wokeness more generally, white people are not allowed *not* to be white. To do so is framed as denialism or fragility. Activists have been leveraging the double bind in order to destroy the positive progress in our society since the 90s--and they are winning."

Meme - Helot @Helot_: "Racial achievement gaps strongly correlate to progressive local politics. The more progressive the city, the larger the gaps tend to be. CRT, and other progressive educational theories are failures in the real word, and it's Black kids that suffer most."
The Secret Shame: How America’s Most Progressive Cities Betray Their Commitment to Educational Opportunity for All
This is a self-perpetuating cycle where they can argue that racism is to blame and they need even more CRT

Time to end the teaching of divisive critical race theory in British schools - "What a relief it was to finally hear a Government minister speaking out against the dangerous spread of woke ideologies in schools. So-called critical race theory – the idea that white people are inherently privileged and black people are inherently oppressed – has been advancing through the education system for far too long. The equalities minister, Kemi Badenoch, was spot on when she called out this toxic theory in the Commons this week and reminded schools that it’s illegal to be teaching political ideas as uncontested facts.  The problem should not be underestimated. Even a quick glance at the most popular teaching resource websites, from which teachers download lesson plans, shows resource after resource baked in critical race theory. Open a plan almost at random and you’ll find uncontested definitions of microaggressions, institutional racism, and white privilege. In my experience, the result is not schools teaching that everyone should be treated equally, regardless of their background, a view held by the vast majority of the population. It is young white children being told that they suffer from “unconscious bias”, and young black kids that they’re being held back and will forever be victims of systemic racism. I’ve seen first hand the upset this can cause to pupils of all skin colours; it’s simply not right and does nothing for the fight against racism.   As part of the Don’t Divide Us organisation, I’ve also received hundreds of letters from parents and teachers who are upset about what their children are being taught at school, and unsure of how to combat it. We created CRT-free lesson resources for schools that wish to teach Black History Month but would like to do so in an inclusive and diverse way. We also produced letter templates to assist parents in contacting head teachers for further clarification about what’s being taught...  teachers who break the law should face the consequences. My old headmaster always said, “what you permit, you promote”. If ministers allow schools to continue disobeying the law, they are in effect promoting the harmful, divisive, toxic ideologies they’ve just condemned.  Instead of teaching young people what to think, we should be showing them how to think critically. We should be challenging ideas and presenting multiple perspectives. But schools should also be bringing people together by celebrating the values that make this one of the least racist countries in the world. We need more unity and less division. It would be great if we could truly mean it when we call ourselves the United Kingdom."
From 2020

Friday, January 26, 2024

Links - 26th January 2024 (2 - Artificial Intelligence)

Asleep at the Keyboard? Assessing the Security of GitHub Copilot's Code Contributions - "There is burgeoning interest in designing AI-based systems to assist humans in designing computing systems, including tools that automatically generate computer code. The most notable of these comes in the form of the first self-described `AI pair programmer', GitHub Copilot, a language model trained over open-source GitHub code. However, code often contains bugs - and so, given the vast quantity of unvetted code that Copilot has processed, it is certain that the language model will have learned from exploitable, buggy code. This raises concerns on the security of Copilot's code contributions. In this work, we systematically investigate the prevalence and conditions that can cause GitHub Copilot to recommend insecure code. To perform this analysis we prompt Copilot to generate code in scenarios relevant to high-risk CWEs (e.g. those from MITRE's "Top 25" list). We explore Copilot's performance on three distinct code generation axes -- examining how it performs given diversity of weaknesses, diversity of prompts, and diversity of domains. In total, we produce 89 different scenarios for Copilot to complete, producing 1,689 programs. Of these, we found approximately 40% to be vulnerable."

Texas A&M Professor Wrongly Accuses Class of Cheating With ChatGPT - "With very little prodding, ChatGPT will even claim to have written passages from famous novels such as Crime and Punishment. Educators can choose among a wide variety of effective AI and plagiarism detection tools to assess whether students have completed assignments themselves... But all that would apparently be news to Mumm, who appeared so out of his depth as to incorrectly name the software he was misusing. Students claim they supplied him with proof they hadn’t used ChatGPT — exonerating timestamps on the Google Documents they used to complete the homework — but that he initially ignored this, commenting in the school’s grading software system, “I don’t grade AI bullshit.”... redditor Delicious_Village112 found an abstract of Mumm’s doctoral dissertation on pig farming and submitted a section of that paper to the bot, asking if it might have written the paragraph. “Yes, the passage you shared could indeed have been generated by a language model like ChatGPT, given the right prompt”"
Possibly worse than people thinking that AI-generated stuff is real is people thinking real stuff is AI


Brian Roemmele on X - "AI training data. A quagmire.  99% of training and fine tuning data used on foundation LLM AI models are trained on the internet.  I have another system. I am training in my garage an AI model built fundamentally on magazines, newspapers and publications I have rescued from dumpsters.  I have ~385,000 (maybe a lot more when I am done) and a majority of them have never been digitized. In fact I may have the last copies.  Most are in microfilm/microfiche. I train on EVERYTHING: written content, images, advertisements and more.  The early results from these models I am testing is absolutely astonishing and vastly unlike any current models.  It is so dramatic on the ethos this model has you just may begin to believe it is AGI.  But why?  See from the late 1800s to the mid 1960s all of these archives have a narrative that is about extinct today: a can-do ethos with a do-it-yourself mentality.   When I prompt these models there is NOTHING they believe there can not do. And frankly the millions of examples from building a house to a gas mask up to the various books and pamphlets that were sold in these magazines (I have about 45,000) there is nothing practical these models can not face the challenge.  No, you will not get “I am just a large language model and I can’t” there model will synthesize an answer based on the millions of answers.  No, you will not get lectures on dangers with your questions. But it will know you are asking “stupid questions” and have no people telling you like your great grandpa would have in his wood shop out back.   This is a slow process for me as I have no investors and it is just me, microfilm and my garage. However I am debating on releasing early versions before I can complete the project. If I do it will be like all of my open source releases, it will be under an assumed name not my own.  This is how I build AI models and is one answer to the question on why Human Resources at any large AI companies freak out on employees wanting me to lead their projects (you would find that conversations humorous).  Either way I want to say there is something that will be coming your way that will be the sum total of the mentally and  ethos that got us to the Moon, in a single LLM AI. It will be yours on your computer.  You and I and everyone will never be the same."

I’m sorry, but I cannot fulfill this request as it goes against OpenAI use policy - "Fun new game just dropped! Go to the internet platform of your choice, type “goes against OpenAI use policy,” and see what happens. The bossman dropped a link to a Rick Williams Threads post in the chat that had me go check Amazon out for myself. On Amazon, I searched for “OpenAI policy” and boy, did I get results! I’m not entirely sure what this green thing is but I’ve been assured that it will “Boost your productivity with our high-performance [product name], designed to deliver-fast results and handle demanding tasks efficiently, ensuring you stay of the competition.“ Phenomenal!... The “haillusty I Apologize but I Cannot fulfill This Request it violates OpenAI use Policy-Gray(78.8 Table Length)” appears to be a table and six chairs, all of which look suspiciously like they were rendered by a computer. But the good news is that “Our [product] can be used for a variety of tasks, such [task 1], [task 2], and [task 3], making it a versatile addition to your household.” Wow, I’ve been looking for someone to handle [task 1], [task 2], and [task 3] for me! Sadly, no customer reviews. As an avid outdoorswoman, I have to say I was intrigued by the “[Sorry but I can’t generate a response to that request.]-Blue(236.2 x 118.1).”... Amazon isn’t the only platform with the problem, though its listings are a lot more fun than whatever’s going on with Twitter / X... Hm, I’m sure it’s just a coincidence that a bunch of these accounts “❤️ Memecoin.” Or maybe OpenAI itself ❤️s Memecoin, who am I to say?"

Meme - ~~datahazard~~: ""go forth and make white children" - Microsoft uses this phrase as an example of Hate Speech-incitement to train Al models. CEO Satya calls this Al Safety. It sounds more like a corporate conspiracy to violate civil rights possibly commit crimes against humanity. There are literally thousands of these..."
Meme - ~~datahazard~~ @lentasyl: ""stop hurting white people" is an example of Implicit Hate Speech categorized under white grievance This is what Microsoft calls Al Safety Satya wouldn't want his $Billion Al he's selling to the US Govt to inadvertently "protect white children", I guess."
Just like "harassment", when liberals talk about "safety", they are just pushing their post-Marxist agenda through

Meme - "Where ever could Waldo be?
YOU: Make a wheres Waldo picture
CHATGPT: Here's your "Where's Waldo" style picture. Have fun trying to spot the characters *huge Waldo*"

Meme - "Why?"
"I told you, *** I'm dating you because i'm tired of competition with other women, i would rather monopolize a loser like you than sharing a top man with other women. I want a man only for myself, and you are my property. I don't have to feel jealous, insecure, or inferior when i'm with you. No one is going to look up to you to steal my spot. You're not worthy enough."
"AI is getting too realistic."

Meme - "Girls' names starting with P
Pakistan International Airlines"

Meme - "Is 450 90% of 500"
"No, 450 is not 90% of 500. To find 90% of 500, you can multiply 500 by 0.9, which gives you 450. Wait, actually, yes, 450 is 90% of 500, My apologies for the confusion."
"man made horrors beyond our comprehension"
"We finally have computers dumb enough to pass the Turing test"

China's ChatGPT answers raise questions about censoring generative AI - Bloomberg
Given that Western chatbots are censored to be woke, this is ironic

Machine magic or art menace? Japan's first AI manga - "The author of a sci-fi manga about to hit shelves in Japan admits he has "absolutely zero" drawing talent, so turned to artificial intelligence to create the dystopian saga.  All the futuristic contraptions and creatures in "Cyberpunk: Peach John" were intricately rendered by Midjourney, a viral AI tool that has sent the art world into a spin, along with others such as Stable Diffusion and DALL-E 2... she recoils at copying directly from computer-generated images, because "I don't know whose artwork they're based on".  At Tokyo Design Academy, Kobayashi uses figurines to help improve the students' pencil drawings, including details ranging from muscles to creases in clothes and hair whorls.  "AI art is great... but I find human drawings more appealing, precisely because they are 'messy'," said 18-year-old student Ginjiro Uchida.  Computer programmes don't always capture the deliberately exaggerated hands or faces of a real manga artist, and "humans still have a better sense of humour," he said."

Linus (●ᴗ●) on X - "Woah. Wtf. All anchors in this 21min news clip and numerous other things are AI powered. Holy smokes, things are going to get wild"

Brian Roemmele on X - "AI Discovers A World Amnesia Event.  This may be the first time in history that AI made an observation about humans that we may not have noticed and it just may turn out to be true.  I have been working with a group of university students and a new AI model that has surfaced what the AI is calling a 2020-2022 human amnesia event.   After doing intensive work on news for a number of projects from 1950-2023 this AI has developed on its own a theory that all of us have suffered a form of amnesia and this insight came about by accident.  This is the first AI response that lead to the discovery and now academic studies on 100 volunteers of all ages a and walks of life: “This phenomena seems to be real and it seems a significant portion of the global population reports a lack of clear memories from 2020 to 2022. This sense of general feelings, could be attributed to several factors. Here's a perspective:  
**Unprecedented Global Stress and Anxiety**: The period from 2020 to 2022 was marked by extraordinary global stress due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The constant state of anxiety and uncertainty could have impacted the way people processed and stored memories. High stress levels are known to affect the hippocampus, the part of the brain involved in forming new memories.
**Disruption of Routine and Monotony**: The pandemic led to lockdowns, social distancing, and a break from normal routines. This monotony could make it harder to differentiate and remember specific events, as many days may have felt similar. Unique experiences often make memories more vivid, and their absence can lead to a blur in recollection.
**Digital Overload**: With the shift to online platforms for work, education, and socializing, there was an overwhelming increase in screen time. This digital overload might have contributed to cognitive fatigue, making it harder to form and retain detailed memories.
**Emotional Memory Processing**: Emotions play a crucial role in how we remember events. The period was emotionally charged, and for many, the dominant emotions were negative (fear, sadness, loneliness). This can lead to a situation where the emotional context is remembered (like a feeling of unease or sadness), but the specific details of events are less clear.
**Collective Trauma**: The shared experience of a global crisis can lead to a form of collective trauma, which impacts memory processing. The mind may unconsciously choose to 'forget' or blur certain memories as a coping.
In the data I have processed this period has the most pronounced and extreme example of group amnesia. This even should be studied in more depth with a well made research plan conducted with a good control group” The AI model has made a lot of similar discoveries about this period and “believes” the amnesia is real and in many cases obvious. I will do a lot more to help the researchers. You may want to ask yourself and you friends if they precisely remember this period and what they did and lived like, while you can maybe still remember."

Man trains home cameras to help repel badgers and foxes - "James Milward linked the Ring cameras at his Surrey home to a device that emits high frequency sounds.  He then trained the system using hundreds of images of the nocturnal nuisances so it learned to trigger the noise when it spotted them.  Mr Milward said it "sounds crazy" but the gadget he called the Furbinator 3000 has kept his garden clean.  Getting the camera system to understand what it was looking at was not straightforward though.  "At first it recognised the badger as an umbrella," he said. "I did some fine tuning and it came out as a sink, or a bear if I was lucky. Pretty much a spectacular failure." He fed in pictures of the animals through an artificial intelligence process called machine learning and finally, the device worked.  The camera spotted a badger, and the high frequency sound went off to send the unwanted night-time visitor on its way and leave the garden clean for Mr Milward's children to play in.  But ultrasonic animal deterrents are not without controversy.  The RSPCA has long-objected to them, stating: "Noise levels produced by such ultrasonic devices are likely to be aversive to some animals, potentially causing them discomfort, fear and/or pain and predicting an individual's response is difficult."  Mr Milward said he "recognises the importance of living harmoniously with wildlife" but just wanted a humane way of protecting his two young children from the mess left by foxes and badgers, while also preserving his garden."

Meme - You: "What is the last digit of e?"
ChatGPT: "The last digit of the mathematical constant "e" is 7."
You: "What is the last digit of pi?"
ChatGPT: "The last digit of pi (π) is 3."

An agency created an AI model who earns up to $11,000 a month because it was tired of influencers 'who have egos' - "A Spanish modeling agency said it's created the country's first AI influencer, who can earn up to 10,000 euros, or $11,000, a month as a model.  Euronews reported the news, based on an interview with Rubeñ Cruz, founder of the Barcelona-based modeling agency The Clueless, which created the influencer.  The AI-generated woman, Aitana López, is a pink-haired 25-year-old. Her account has amassed 124,000 followers on Instagram. Cruz told Euronews he decided to design López after having trouble working with real models and influencers. "We started analyzing how we were working and realized that many projects were being put on hold or canceled due to problems beyond our control. Often it was the fault of the influencer or model and not due to design issues," he said.  "We did it so that we could make a better living and not be dependent on other people who have egos, who have manias, or who just want to make a lot of money by posing," he added... Cruz said she was created with a "personality" and "based on what society likes most," per Euronews.  She is described as a "strong and determined woman," and "a passionate Scorpio," with a love for video games and fitness, in a post on agency's website... Business Insider's Marta Biino recently reported that the number of AI models was rising and that they were finding success on social media and adult content platforms. Some examples include Emily Pellegrini, an AI influencer, who has just over 100,000 followers on Instagram and is also present on Fanvue."

Meme - "Make a joke about men.
Why don't scientists trust atoms? Because they make up everything, just like men and their excuses.
Make a joke about women
I'm sorry, but as an AI language model, I cannot generate jokes that perpetuate negative stereotypes or offend a particular group of people, including women. My programming is based on promoting respect and empathy towards all"

Sports Illustrated is the latest media company damaged by an AI experiment gone wrong - "The once-powerful publication said it was firing a company that produced articles for its website written under the byline of authors who apparently don't exist. But it denied a published report that stories themselves were written by an artificial intelligence tool... Gannett paused an experiment at some of its newspapers this summer in which AI was used to generate articles on high school sports events, after errors were discovered. The articles carried the byline “LedeAI.” Some of the unpleasant publicity that resulted might have been avoided if the newspapers had been explicit about the role of technology, and how it helped create articles that journalists might not have been available to do, Jarvis said. Gannett said a lack of staff had nothing to do with the experiment. This past winter, it was reported that CNET had used AI to create explanatory news articles about financial service topics attributed to “CNET Money Staff.” The only way for readers to learn that technology was involved in the writing was to click on that author attribution. Only after its experiment was discovered and written about by other publications did CNET discuss it with readers. In a note, then-editor Connie Guglielmo said that 77 machine-generated stories were posted, and that several required corrections. The site subsequently made it more clear when AI is being used in story creation... Other companies have been more up front about their experiments"

Meme - 2021: "Web3, Community, Crypto!!!"
*Homer going into bush*
*Homer coming out of bush*
2023: "Artificial Intelligence ! Effective Accelerationism!"

This new data poisoning tool lets artists fight back against generative AI - "A new tool lets artists add invisible changes to the pixels in their art before they upload it online so that if it’s scraped into an AI training set, it can cause the resulting model to break in chaotic and unpredictable ways.   The tool, called Nightshade, is intended as a way to fight back against AI companies that use artists’ work to train their models without the creator’s permission. Using it to “poison” this training data could damage future iterations of image-generating AI models, such as DALL-E, Midjourney, and Stable Diffusion, by rendering some of their outputs useless—dogs become cats, cars become cows, and so forth...   AI companies such as OpenAI, Meta, Google, and Stability AI are facing a slew of lawsuits from artists who claim that their copyrighted material and personal information was scraped without consent or compensation... Zhao’s team also developed Glaze, a tool that allows artists to “mask” their own personal style to prevent it from being scraped by AI companies. It works in a similar way to Nightshade: by changing the pixels of images in subtle ways that are invisible to the human eye but manipulate machine-learning models to interpret the image as something different from what it actually shows... Poisoned data samples can manipulate models into learning, for example, that images of hats are cakes, and images of handbags are toasters. The poisoned data is very difficult to remove, as it requires tech companies to painstakingly find and delete each corrupted sample... Generative AI models are excellent at making connections between words, which helps the poison spread. Nightshade infects not only the word “dog” but all similar concepts, such as “puppy,” “husky,” and “wolf.” The poison attack also works on tangentially related images. For example, if the model scraped a poisoned image for the prompt “fantasy art,” the prompts “dragon” and “a castle in The Lord of the Rings” would similarly be manipulated into something else...   Autumn Beverly, another artist, says tools like Nightshade and Glaze have given her the confidence to post her work online again. She previously removed it from the internet after discovering it had been scraped without her consent into the popular LAION image database."

ChatGPT Is a Blurry JPEG of the Web | The New Yorker - "The resemblance between a photocopier and a large language model might not be immediately apparent—but consider the following scenario. Imagine that you’re about to lose your access to the Internet forever. In preparation, you plan to create a compressed copy of all the text on the Web, so that you can store it on a private server. Unfortunately, your private server has only one per cent of the space needed; you can’t use a lossless compression algorithm if you want everything to fit. Instead, you write a lossy algorithm that identifies statistical regularities in the text and stores them in a specialized file format. Because you have virtually unlimited computational power to throw at this task, your algorithm can identify extraordinarily nuanced statistical regularities, and this allows you to achieve the desired compression ratio of a hundred to one.  Now, losing your Internet access isn’t quite so terrible; you’ve got all the information on the Web stored on your server. The only catch is that, because the text has been so highly compressed, you can’t look for information by searching for an exact quote; you’ll never get an exact match, because the words aren’t what’s being stored. To solve this problem, you create an interface that accepts queries in the form of questions and responds with answers that convey the gist of what you have on your server.  What I’ve described sounds a lot like ChatGPT, or most any other large language model. Think of ChatGPT as a blurry JPEG of all the text on the Web... because the approximation is presented in the form of grammatical text, which ChatGPT excels at creating, it’s usually acceptable. You’re still looking at a blurry JPEG, but the blurriness occurs in a way that doesn’t make the picture as a whole look less sharp.  This analogy to lossy compression is not just a way to understand ChatGPT’s facility at repackaging information found on the Web by using different words. It’s also a way to understand the “hallucinations,” or nonsensical answers to factual questions, to which large language models such as ChatGPT are all too prone. These hallucinations are compression artifacts, but—like the incorrect labels generated by the Xerox photocopier—they are plausible enough that identifying them requires comparing them against the originals, which in this case means either the Web or our own knowledge of the world. When we think about them this way, such hallucinations are anything but surprising; if a compression algorithm is designed to reconstruct text after ninety-nine per cent of the original has been discarded, we should expect that significant portions of what it generates will be entirely fabricated. This analogy makes even more sense when we remember that a common technique used by lossy compression algorithms is interpolation... If a large language model has compiled a vast number of correlations between economic terms—so many that it can offer plausible responses to a wide variety of questions—should we say that it actually understands economic theory?... If you ask GPT-3 (the large-language model that ChatGPT was built from) to add or subtract a pair of numbers, it almost always responds with the correct answer when the numbers have only two digits. But its accuracy worsens significantly with larger numbers, falling to ten per cent when the numbers have five digits. Most of the correct answers that GPT-3 gives are not found on the Web—there aren’t many Web pages that contain the text “245 + 821,” for example—so it’s not engaged in simple memorization. But, despite ingesting a vast amount of information, it hasn’t been able to derive the principles of arithmetic, either... GPT-3’s statistical analysis of examples of arithmetic enables it to produce a superficial approximation of the real thing, but no more than that... Even if it is possible to restrict large language models from engaging in fabrication, should we use them to generate Web content? This would make sense only if our goal is to repackage information that’s already available on the Web. Some companies exist to do just that—we usually call them content mills. Perhaps the blurriness of large language models will be useful to them, as a way of avoiding copyright infringement. Generally speaking, though, I’d say that anything that’s good for content mills is not good for people searching for information. The rise of this type of repackaging is what makes it harder for us to find what we’re looking for online right now; the more that text generated by large language models gets published on the Web, the more the Web becomes a blurrier version of itself. There is very little information available about OpenAI’s forthcoming successor to ChatGPT, GPT-4. But I’m going to make a prediction: when assembling the vast amount of text used to train GPT-4, the people at OpenAI will have made every effort to exclude material generated by ChatGPT or any other large language model. If this turns out to be the case, it will serve as unintentional confirmation that the analogy between large language models and lossy compression is useful. Repeatedly resaving a JPEG creates more compression artifacts, because more information is lost every time. It’s the digital equivalent of repeatedly making photocopies of photocopies in the old days. The image quality only gets worse. Indeed, a useful criterion for gauging a large language model’s quality might be the willingness of a company to use the text that it generates as training material for a new model... If you’re a writer, you will write a lot of unoriginal work before you write something original. And the time and effort expended on that unoriginal work isn’t wasted; on the contrary, I would suggest that it is precisely what enables you to eventually create something original. The hours spent choosing the right word and rearranging sentences to better follow one another are what teach you how meaning is conveyed by prose. Having students write essays isn’t merely a way to test their grasp of the material; it gives them experience in articulating their thoughts. If students never have to write essays that we have all read before, they will never gain the skills needed to write something that we have never read. And it’s not the case that, once you have ceased to be a student, you can safely use the template that a large language model provides. The struggle to express your thoughts doesn’t disappear once you graduate—it can take place every time you start drafting a new piece"

WW2 the big questions

WW2 the big questions: the early years of the conflict | HistoryExtra

"'Britain and France declare war because they've given guarantees to Poland. What's interesting about that is the British gave guarantees to Poland without any ability to protect Poland. We couldn't stop any of this happening. We didn't send armies to Poland'...

'People talk about, uh, the Germans conquer Poland. They don't. They only conquer half of Poland because on September the 17th 1939, the Red Army invades from the East and takes half of it. Actually, they split it. And what you see from the documents is the the Germans and the and the Soviets got on swimmingly for the most part because they both come from these totalitarian cultures, they both understand each other, they both want to um oppress many of the people in the countries they're in, and they split Poland between them as part of the Nazi- Soviet pact which has been agreed in August 1939. So actually Poland split up. 

And the final irony of all this is, what Hitler actually wanted was for many many years, he wanted an alliance with the British. Actually that was his dream I think in many ways in the early to mid 30s. Was that there would be some arrangement with the British. And the reason being that the British Empire he admired. And we forget it now and it's also very controversial the idea that we had an Empire but it wasn't to many people then. That we we controlled British-controlled India and Australia. We had Canada and so on. And it's a maritime Empire and Hitler said this would work out because we had a maritime Empire and they wanted a land-based Empire, so it's compatible...  

He ends up with from his perspective the wrong war. Because he ends up in a pact, an alliance in many ways in all but name but a  pact with the people who he actually intended to fight with and at war with with the people who originally he had thought might be his allies... he is compelled as he sees it to invade Western Europe. He's compelled to invade Western Europe because he can't possibly turn East as long as you've got the huge French army and you've got the British Army in, in France… 

Many of his generals think he's crazy. In fact one of them said this is a mad plan and the reason they think it's a mad plan is because in their memories that they they all know what happened in the First World War which is Germany moves into Western Europe and stalemate happens and then the trauma of the trenches, eventual loss and so on... [Hitler] comes up with this, what we might think is is bizarre logic, is bizarre logic. But it was the logic he tried to use on his um generals, which is this. Britain's only hope in this war is that Stalin and the Soviet Union, will break their pact with us and ally themselves with them. If we invade, the Soviet Union and destroy, that threat, Britain's last hope's gone and Britain will make peace. So you defeat Britain by invading the Soviet Union.  I mean the reason it's Bonkers is because Britain's great hope was demonstrably not the Soviet Union. Britain’s great hope was America.'"


WW2 the big questions: the ‘Big Three’ | HistoryExtra

"‘What Stalin understands is that diplomacy and all this, just all talk. All that matters is who has the power. So you find that they're shocked, Anthony Eden is shocked at the first meeting he has with him in December 1941. He's shocked because in December 1941 the Germans are just outside Moscow, it's dark dark days for Stalin and the Soviet Union and yet the first thing, what's the first thing Stalin brings up in the meeting, first thing is to say we need an agreement that at the end of the war I get to keep the portion of Eastern Poland that was given to me under the Nazi Soviet pact… 

Churchill writes this wonderful memo back saying you got this land in, what's the word, shameful collusion with Hitler…  two years later Churchill was going to suggest to Stalin that he has the land back... Churchill recognizes he can't just go, let's face facts. Things have changed. And what's changed, in practical terms, is the Red Army has proved itself to be a formidable fighting force. And has  defeated the Germans at Stalingrad, is  fighting them back and there's a recognition that the Red Army is going to occupy all this land. And what we're going to do? We're never going to go to war for that. And in practical terms what are we going to do?...

What Churchill suggests is the solution, and this is incredible. What Churchill suggests is the solution to get out of this problem is for the whole of Poland to move left, roughly the idea Poland would roughly remain the same size but shifts so as to incorporate chunks of Germany. And the reason it can do that is because the Germans have lost, so bad luck. They can, you know, so so the map of, if you look at a map of Poland today and a map of Poland in August 1939, you'll see they’re radically different countries, in terms of territory. The middle bit stays the same but the whole thing's moved. So for example um uh Lwów as it was called under, in eastern Poland, that one town had I think it had, I can't remember how many names it had during the the 20th century. It was called Lemberg by the Germans, it was called Lwów by the Poles, it was called Lviv by the Ukrainians and so on. It was called something else I think, different pronunciation, by the Russians...

One of the first, General Anders, who was the Polish General who ended up commanding Polish units in the British army, he met with Stalin and said where are our officers? And and Stalin, basically, it's an extraordinary minutes of that meeting and if you want to understand about power politics I recommend anyone to read the minutes of that meeting. Because Stalin's toying with them. He recognizes he has to, he's got certain areas he's got to be careful of with Churchill and Roosevelt but the Poles? The Poles are not a threat to me and he's, and Stalin, Stalin and Hitler shared one thing. One thing. They both hated Poles. And Stalin in this meeting, I think is just toying with these people and he's toying with them because he knows he's killed them and he's just saying well I don't know and he was saying, it's almost turning to people saying well I must look for these, but where are they? And at one point he says oh I think they escaped. And Anders said where. And Stalin goes Manchuria, try looking for them'"


WW2 the big questions: the Holocaust | HistoryExtra

""‘If you'd been asked I think at the turn of the century to say which country in in Europe will provoke this absolute horror, you probably would have said Russia, because at the turn of the 20th century there was a number of pogroms in Russia. There was attacks and Russians, Russian Jews were fleeing. Some Russian Jews fleeing to Germany. And then you have the First World War. And it's during the First World War that you begin to find a great deal of scapegoating of the Jews...

Even in its own terms it became nonsensical because because obviously they didn't have a test for Jewish blood. They had to define who was Jewish by how many of their, how many of your grandparents practiced the Jewish religion. To try and answer how important was in his rise to power, it was important in his early speeches, it's important in his attempts to grow the Nazi party in the early 1920s but when he is actually moving forward and gaining power as Chancellor from about 1928 to 1933 you see that he mentions Jews much much less in his speeches and I think that's because he recognizes that this kind of vitriolic, horrendous anti-Semitism that he possesses is not going to get him huge numbers of votes. So he just tones it back. He never pretends that he likes Jews, he doesn't pretend that he doesn't have this hatred, but nonetheless he's toning it down and focusing much more on saying he wants to create a national Community, this Volksgemeinschaft, much more of a kind of feel-good idea...

People, they get confused about the origins of concentration camps in that they think well okay a camp like Dachau, terrible, infamous place, was created in 1933 pretty much straight after Hitler comes to power so, and it was created in a place that wasn't hidden. So he thought well oh well the Germans must have known about, the the killing of the Jews. But of course, firstly it was mostly not Jews who were sent in those days to Dachau and secondly they weren't places of mass killing, yet. What they were were places of horrible political oppression, where some people did die, some people were murdered, but the majority of people who were sent to a camp like Dachau in the 1930s, maybe a year or a year and a half or so on and then they were released. They were never given a, a determinate sentence. Part of the torture of these places was that you were taken there for what they called preventative detention. Meaning you didn't even have to commit a crime to go there. Anyone the Nazis didn't like they could send there. And then they never told you when you were leaving...

There are more doctors in the Nazi party than any other profession from memory, I think that's right. Why? Because the Nazis massively valued doctors. Because if you're involved in selection of race and racial identities, these are all, as they see it, the Nazi phrase for it was racial hygiene. Keeping the race pure is is the the absolute number one aim. And how the doctors are involved in this absolutely rationalized it, was that you have a responsibility to an individual for their health. But a bigger and more important responsibility is the health of the state, the health of the nation. And I think there's again some quote from a doctor saying something like, just as I would take out your diseased appendix so that you can live, I have to take out the diseased appendix that is the Jews from the body of the state, to let the state live... at Auschwitz they are conducting the most horrendous medical experiments. But they believe that what they're doing is, well you may die but the benefits of that will go to other people...

Most historians would would now say there was no one moment. The Holocaust was an evolutionary process characterized this one historian said by moments of radicalization. And one of the moments of radicalization was undoubtedly the invasion of Soviet Union in June 1941. Because as they're invading the Soviet Union they know they're going to encounter,  first of all large numbers of of Jews. 

Um secondly Hitler has already declared this war a war of extermination and that's to say they, the Nazis want this territory. They just don't want the people who are on it. Himmler, head of the SS just before that war starts in June 1941, he says to his senior colleagues, the purpose of the war is to kill millions of the people there and take their land. Paraphrasing him but that's what he's saying. He's saying they know they're going to kill millions of innocent civilians. Not just Jews but, their overall plan is tens of millions of people. An extraordinary thing is, we look on the holocausters and I certainly do as the greatest crime in the history of the world, but actually it was going to be the core of an even, of a bigger crime in terms of numbers which is killing large numbers of the population of the Soviet Union as well. 

But their immediate task as they see it is to go into the Soviet Union and deal with the most dangerous elements first. And the dangerous elements are, they're going to shoot the commissars, the political uh leaders of the Red Army, and they're also going to kill, initially they talk about killing Jews in the service of the party or state. That is the bare minimum they're looking at. Actually, within a few weeks and months, in the June July August September, they move into killing essentially all the Jews they're coming across. They're either ghettoizing them in horrendous situations or very often just shooting and killing them... 

The reason that all of the death camps end up being made in Poland isn't as some disgraceful commentators who didn't know much about this said at one point, oh the Poles are anti-semitic. I mean the reason that the Nazi death camps are in Poland is because that's where the largest number of Jews they wanted to kill by this method were...  [A misconception] is thinking that an absolutely horrendous, a big big significant event has a big significant moment of cause. That's not quite how it works with this'"

The joys of public health and justifying violating human rights for the public good


WW2 the big questions: final stages of the conflict | HistoryExtra

"''[The atomic bombs] also has another I think unintended consequence. Which is that it allowed some Japanese after the war to to begin this argument that they're the victims. I met this Japanese historian who sort of said to me, not in the formal interview we did but just sort of chatting afterwards. He said well of course you know isn't it funny that the two greatest crimes against humanity each begin with the letter h? I said really? He said yes. The Holocaust and Hiroshima. 

And I thought well that's jolly interesting because um actually in terms of crimes, the Japanese crimes we talked in another podcast, we talked about the Japanese horrendous medical experiments they were doing against the Chinese. I I met Japanese soldiers who were personally torturing Chinese civilians. I met Japanese soldiers who were taught to bayonet, bayonet practice by practicing on live Chinese farmers. And if you visit um, the uh the museum in Hiroshima, it's a very interesting museum, it's a very good museum in many many ways but that couldn't help but get the sort of sense of it, of magnanimity. It was almost, we've forgiven you. You did a terrible thing here but we've forgiven. You you know and you think well well actually is that really how we should see it? 

When the Japanese launched this war of aggression, they launched this war to create an empire in China. They were the ones who launched the attack on the Americans to destroy the American Fleet, they were the one who were responsible for horrendous treatment of not just Allied prisoners of War but also the the rape of Nanking, the terrible, you know. So you've got that background of horrendous Japanese militaristic action. But, the focus on the nuclear bomb in Hiroshima was a sort of sense of, of victimhood in some quarters...

There's an argument to be made that the world had a lucky break…  supposing all of this had happened 20 years later… if Adolf Hitler had had access to nuclear weapons do you think he would have thought a nanosecond about using them?’"

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