Clive Robinson December 17, 2022 1:33 PM

@ Ted,

Re : C19 and auto insurance rate.

“The reasons for this are interesting.”

They probably are, but the link you give is backed by a bunch of Yahhos who think outrageous personal data theft is their right.

They are one of the worst personal data stealers I’m aware of. Worse they have other policies to do a “Walled Garden” on you. That is they are trying to do the old and discredited AOL trick of passing you to other members in the Yahho “Chamber of Horrors”…

Any way that said…

I’ve probably found the paper already. It was already way down low on my reading list for reasons I explain below,

@ ALL,

According to another web site the “interesting reasons” are probably,

“The study found that those who hadn’t received a vaccine were more likely to be younger, living in a rural area, and in the lower fifth overall for income. Unvaccinated individuals were also more likely to be diagnosed with alcohol misuse or depression, and with untreated sleep apnea, diabetes, cancer, or dementia.”

In short, what some would call “White Trash” or “Dec 37 / MAGA” mentality types.

As well as the suggestion that because they did not follow Public Health Advice, they were thus more likely to be “legal rule” breakers (hinting at potential criminal mentality as well).

I’ve not yet read the actual journal it’s low on my reading list. Because the abstracts opening paragraph says,

“Coronavirus disease (COVID) vaccine hesitancy is a reflection of psychology that might also contribute to traffic safety. We tested whether COVID vaccination was associated with the risks of a traffic crash.”

For almost exactly the reason the motoring / driving journalists have lept on it. I suspect the paper may well be “coincidence dressed up as potential causality”, and that various idiots like insurance companies and prosecuters are going to jump on it for their own benifits…

There are a couple of huge red flags in that opening paragraph… Firstly the term “vaccine hesitancy” is one thought up by seniors in the “World Health Organisation”(WHO) who for financial reasons –ie China is a major contributor as are certain drugs companies– are into “victimising” those who want more data and honest behaviour befor they take what we now have good reason to suspect is an activity where the risk is over a thousand times the current potential benifit… The second is the use of “might” and for those who know a bit more about it “tested” does not mean what you might think like a double blind trial. No it means taking already suspect data[1] and looking for out of normal range data, that might or might not be an indicator or pure coincidence. Something you might build at best a tentative hypothises not the sole foundations of a paper.

Anyway for those people want to read the paper I found,

[1] It’s a well known factor that people in the lower socio-economic range are more prone to accidents. Because they often work multiple “unsociable hours” jobs and spend considerably longer on the road in chalanging light / driving conditions, in older thus less safe and probably not as well maintained vehicles, than those who work normal hours. Who also can work from home, only have one job related journy, travel at times when traffic conditions are significantly different or can take public transport, etc, etc. Previous studies on Doctors and Nurses who are generally in the upper half of the socio-economic range, show similar accident statistics. They work shifts often do “bank work” at other medical fascilities and travel at times outside the normal work rush hours.

vas pup December 17, 2022 6:13 PM

Israeli startup to deploy hazard-alerting chipsets on Germany’s autobahn

“Israeli startup Autotalks, a maker of smart vehicle communication systems, on Monday announced a partnership for the first deployment of its chipsets at roadside traffic signals
along Germany’s autobahn, the country’s federal highway, aimed at improving road safety and lowering the risk of accidents.

The Kfar Netter-based company has teamed up with Germany’s Afusoft, which focuses on communication and security technology, to deploy its chipsets at road-work signs on the autobahn.

!!!Autotalks develops chipsets based on sensor technology, which allows vehicles to communicate or “talk” with one another and connect to road infrastructure. The sensor can “see” around corners and through any obstacle or obstruction within a radius of up to one mile for the early detection of hazards, the startup says.

V2X-powered smart traffic control systems work in all environments and weather conditions, such as rough weather or poor lighting, to help prevent collisions. The technology is installed mostly on road works signs that are located on service vehicles. Cars equipped with V2X systems, like Volkswagen Golf, ID.3, and ID.4, displays the alert on their infotainment screen.

The collaboration between Autotalks and Afusoft will also allow for smart traffic control signals and alerts for the use of emergency vehicles such as trucks or ambulances.

“An emergency vehicle can request a priority signal from Afusoft’s roadside unit when approaching the intersection,” Autotalks said in the statement. “That allows the fire brigade
vehicle to drive through an intersection at a green light without stopping, resulting in increased safety, punctuality, and lower carbon emissions.”

vas pup December 17, 2022 6:15 PM

Shin Bet: Gaza operatives try to ‘catfish’ Israelis with fake social media accounts

“Terror operatives from the Gaza Strip attempted to contact and harm Israelis by posing as young Israeli women on social media, the Shin Bet security agency said Monday.

According to the Shin Bet, the operatives used photos of real Israeli women, in an attempt to “lure Israeli citizens into contact, with the aim of harming them,” a practice known as

“Terror elements use social networks and operate fictitious profiles to fool innocent citizens, in a way that poses a threat to their privacy and personal security,” the Shin Bet
said in a statement.

Hamas and other terror groups in the Gaza Strip in recent years have repeatedly tried to “catfish” Israelis, notably soldiers, in ==>order to install software on their phones that the terror group could use to gather intelligence on the military.”

Chubby and Lovely December 17, 2022 8:14 PM

I like to submerge myself in the hot bubble bath and wear a snorkel while farting thus trying to duplicate the sea wars with depth charges and torpedoes.

I also like to scout the water beneath for some fresh feces that I may dine upon later.

You gotta love scavenger hunts!

Ted December 17, 2022 10:05 PM


Re: The Study (C19 and auto insurance rates)

It is a peculiar focus of research on various levels, isn’t it? I’d like to know why it came about. In my mind, this health data would be off limits for calculating individual rates, or at least deep in the gray zone.

The majority of risk factors listed in Table 2 are health factors, most of them chronic or complicating issues. Maybe auto insurers or health providers would use this data to adjust rates or provision services across a region?

Clive Robinson December 17, 2022 11:23 PM

@ Ted,

“The majority of risk factors listed in Table 2 are health factors, most of them chronic or complicating issues.”

Some are also now believed to be as a result of “autoimmune” attacks on organs, precipitated by pathogen attack. Such as diabetes being caused by a virus.

As such they do also bring up the long-covid question of “sickness or disability” thus who should pay and how. Something that is of considerable angst in the US.

JonKnowsNothing December 18, 2022 12:30 AM

@Clive, @Ted, All

re: COVID and (car) Insurance

Actuaries use all sorts of information to model group and individual behavior. This is what all Insurance Companies do, government or private.

Anything that might impact your Insurance Bet “that you are going to have an accident” (carry insurance) and their Counter Bet “you will not have an accident” (there is no payout) is part of the overall calculation.

Regardless of the public face of Governments over SARS-CoV-2, insurance companies are not so naive. They have more than rounded in the factors of exposure, reinfection, damage, etc.

If the rates are higher, you can be assured that there is a statistical factor that indicates the likelihood of a payout is higher. That is you have an increase “risk”, and that risk is not offset by any mitigation. So, you are more likely to be impaired while driving and get in an accident.

Both governments and companies balance their Counter Bets against and array of contingencies.

Governments attempt to halt their payouts by not including a “Factor” in qualifying for a payout. LONG COVID is not a “defined illness” and so does not qualify for Long Term Disability Support or early Government provided healthcare.

Companies attempt to halt their payouts by wholesale blackouts of areas or occupations. Racing car drivers and people living in Global Warming Environments where fire, water, flood are becoming more common. The number of payouts is too great for the ROI on policy premiums.

  • The classic example is Hurricane Katrina New Orleans, Louisiana, where people’s homes got flooded and their hurricane insurance paid out $ZERO. They were insured for Hurricane Wind and Rain but not Flooding.

If you are interested, the US Gov Social Security has a number of Mortality or Life Tables. It will tell you how long the US Gov thinks you are going to live and how long you will draw your US SSA Pension. Since COVID19, the life expectancy in the USA has gone down. This means, people will not draw on their pensions for as long as they did before COVID19 eg you will die sooner.

The only way to win, is to outlive the expected table. If you can.

Ted December 18, 2022 11:42 AM

@JonKnowsNothing, Clive, All

Companies attempt to halt their payouts by wholesale blackouts of areas or occupations.

Yes, some risks are exceedingly high. I know two people who were restricted from driving due to medical conditions. One had epileptic seizures. He has since been cleared to drive again. The other had Ménière’s disease (an inner ear disorder that causes vertigo) so she could no longer drive for work.

@Clive, I see the DVLA has a list of medical conditions they ask people to report. I don’t see anything about Covid vaccination. It’s positive that the UK passed the Equality Act 2010 so that insurers could not raise rates without evidence of increased risk. Plus if they did raise people’s rates they would have to inform them of the reason in writing.

JonKnowsNothing December 18, 2022 2:12 PM

@Ted, @Clive, All

re: insurers could not raise rates without evidence of increased risk

An interesting proposition to enforce. Certainly a “feel good” one. Depends on what is deemed to be “evidence” and what is “increased risk”.

1) Driving a car, just driving by itself, is highly risky.

1a) You don’t need to be actively moving the car to get whomped. Rear-enders, icy or wet roads, poor road construction, hydroplaning.

2) People on e-bikes, e-scooters are high risk: no helmets, they run over people, they ignore traffic lights.

2a) You don’t need an e-bike to run over someone. iirc(badly) @Clive has a story about that.

3) People with certain illnesses are deemed to be “risky”.

3a) You don’t need to be “ill” to be impaired. Lot’s of options on this line of reasoning.

There are loads of other factors that result in the same risk profile.

So, how does an enterprising neoliberal-neocon-libertarian company get more money IN and less money OUT?

If you need an “excuse”, profiling a demographic, you can pretty much find a parallel (as in construction) risk behavior, that will “pass scrutiny”. In some areas age or zip code are indicators of Higher Risk. So, you up your odds by finding something else that will fit into that profile and is deemed acceptable to smooth the price change.

ex: In family restaurants, the menu contains a list of items and pricing. Restaurants keep a close monitor on what’s being purchased and the cost of the item. When they want to raise the price and increase their total intake, they do not raise the prices on every item on the menu. They raise the price selectively, picking a few items for larger increases and some items get no increase. Customer behavior is monitored by the choices they make. There are some items that people will take no matter what the price and some they will ignore. Most often the restaurant gets it right, they get higher intakes and people still order “what they want” but guided by “subconscious manipulation”.

Pretty much the only version that works is the “100% All Must Be Included”.

ex: In the USA this is called a Preexisting Condition. In prior years, any insurance company (except some group policies funded by employers) could exclude anyone with a health condition labeled “preexisting” and deny health coverage for that condition or just outright kick the person from the insurance roles. So many people that had serious health issues could not get health coverage.

Then the law was changed and there was a flip to No Preexisting Exclusions, and people could then buy health policies that would cover their illness. There is no cap on the costs, just that they have to be able to buy it, if they can afford it.

Of course, this is not a popular item with the insurance industry, and there are regular attempts to re-instate some preexisting exclusions. The cost of coverage Out Goes, increases and the ROI is smaller plus the logistics of handling information and medical care for an entire population is a huge expense.

But as long as the 100% All Must Be Included, remains the law, people can get insurance – at a cost.


Search Terms.

Expected Average
Price elasticity

Nudge influence

Preexisting Exclusion
Homelessness in California
Denial of Benefits
Social Housing
California State Hospitals Agnews, Porterville

Clive Robinson December 18, 2022 8:42 PM

@ Ted, JonKnowsNothing,

“I see the DVLA has a list of medical conditions they ask people to report.”

Yes, they are those that are considerd to be likely to make it unwise for you to be incontrol of what is when all is said and done,

“A lethal weapon, with a very large caliber and mass of projectile”

If you’ve ever been knocked down, or run over by someone being careless, stupid, malicious or some combination thereof, as I have been on numerous occassions when being a pedestrian or cyclist. You can understand why you might not want to add to that list someone getting behind the wheel that gets changes in vision, motor skills, consciousness, even momentarily on very rare occasions.

In the UK in towns and cities public transport used to be sufficiently available and frequent that driving was not a necessity, for by far the majority.

However times have changed and whilst public transport can be considered rarer than rocking-horse poo for most of the UK area thanks to idiot politicians and their “useful idiots” like Dr Beeching[1]. Things are starting to change. In Scotland they are rebuilding some of the railways Axed by politicians as a more propper economic analysis shows that they are way way better than cars or buses for personal transportarion. Also if as has been repeatedly suggested the road haulage vechile and opperation regulations were tightened to within just a tiny fraction of those for railway vehicles and opperation HGV’s would be very much a thing of the past as they could not be even close to cost effective.

So politicians and their vested interests having destroyed the rail network… Had the problem of what to do with the war crippled and disabled who could not or should not drive, so they would not feel excluded from this “New Workers Paradise of Great Britain”…

The solution,

“Give them bus-passes”…

Only the buses never happened as nobody wanted to run them as they were seen as “more loss making” than trains. Because they were uncomfortable, slow, difficult even for the able bodied to use and very unreliable at best (this is still true and it’s only shenanigans with “subsidies” that keep buses on the road).

But… how do you decide who is “deserving” and who is “undeserving” for a bus pass? Essentially as a form od means testing, but worse how do you also use it as punishment for the feekless…

If you have any of the medical conditions you are not alowed to drive, ride a motor bike, or technically a push-bike and no doubt other classes of vehicle will get added over time such as e-scooters… But only some of those medical conditions get you a bus pass… And then not always. So you see not just the means testing but punishment at work…

But to stop the means-testing / feckless-punishment being “obvious” the suspension of a licence is supposadly done on “medical evidence” that is “reviewed by a medical panel”… Evidence suggests the “panel” is not even on par with an early 1980’s “Expert System” running on an 8bit personal computer as a student project…

[1] Dr Richard Beeching was a drab grey Civil Servant who had worked at “Imperial Chemicals Industries”(ICI) as a “Business man – economist”. He was brought in by a politician with a lot of personal investment in “Heavy Goods Vehicle”(HGV) road haulage to produce a report to do a “hatchet job” on the British Railway Network that was a competitor to road haulage, but the government had,destroyed during WWII and had not put even sufficient funds to maintain it in decrepitude. So “no conflict there then…”.

Dr Beeching’s report has always been at best suspect, and it’s been pointed out that it was not just his local railway line that mysteriously did not get recommended for the chop when it really should have been, the railways going to “others of influance” that also should have been axed were likewise mysteriously not recommend.

Worse the real reason for the cuts, was that during WWII the government knocked the the crap out of the railways and drove them into the ground and made no attempt to maintain it or repair the damages they had wrought or invest in modernisation. Politicions of the “Beer and fags for the boys” variety wanted to give everyman a car in their “New Workers Paridise” for sunday drives and the little wifey to go shoping in (same reasoning for Volkswagen Beetle and Citroën 2CV). So wanted excuses to build roads for cars, lorries, and oh yes that future replacment for trains buses… that of course never happened.

This “car for everyman” nonsense carried on for decades with the disastrous truth kept hidden. You can look up Prime Minister Maggie Thatcher’s

“A man who, beyond the age of 26, finds himself on a bus can count himself as a failure”

Comment back in 1986. It was recorded in various documents, but I also remember seeing her say it, shown on television news at the time. As it quite literally caused not just my jaw to drop, but my meal I was carrying to the table to slide of my plate… Though mysteriously it’s now getting “edited out of history”… we are now at the “it was said by someone else, and mis-attributed” stage of “write-washing” and it’s been removed from Wikipedia and most other “on-line resources” (including the BBC).

JonKnowsNothing December 18, 2022 9:03 PM

@Clive, @Ted, All

re: “write-washing” & WikiP

There are a lot of good things at WikiP but Edit Wars are as nasty as they come. Been in a few and there’s nothing like having another editor pulling rank to omit things that folks don’t want to be seen.

There is a list of NoNoes and oodles of editing rules and the plea for people to help add to the cumulative total knowledge.

Some of the best information is on the secondary talk and history pages to see what’s been deleted and reinserted and deleted again. However, there’s a lot of redirects now and those rarely carry the previous history pages forward. A giant black hole that is growing.

It should be noted that LEAs and Governments are very keen to monitor their reputation and WikiP is a prime place to see that in action. If it’s a Hot Hot Hot Topic, be careful about editing or altering anything other than a spelling error. You might have valid information to contribute, fitting within all the rules, but there are some items that get flamed down, by people who know less than you about a topic.

JonKnowsNothing December 18, 2022 11:38 PM

@Clive, SpaceLifeForm, All

re: COVID Tornado ripping through China

A MSM report of the start of the COVID Tornado, that is ripping through China.

There will be 3 waves, +1Million dead, and funeral homes are already overwhelmed.

  • Wave 1 Mid Dec 2022-Mid Jan 2023
  • Wave 2 Late Jan 2023-Mid Feb 2023
  • Wave 3 Late Feb 2023-Mid March 2023

I recommend caution reading the article. It’s like reliving Wuhan except worse, as the waves will not be contained inside China, they will spill over the borders.

No indication of which specific variant is dominant.


http s:// m/world/2022/dec/19/china-covid-waves-winter-cities-quiet

(url fractured)

Ted December 19, 2022 1:29 AM

@Clive, JonKnowsNothing

Yeah, the DVLA is not playing around. I just clicked on “Computer vision syndrome” to see what the reporting guidance was and a voluminous list of reportable eye conditions popped up.

In light of these medical safety standards, I’m encouraged the UK has some solid transportation programs in place. (Gotta give ‘em credit, they did come up with the railroad to start with.)

One of the favorite stories I found, however, was a story with a dog. Obi the dog and his human Chris. The DVLA had Chris, and Obi, visit a Driving Mobility centre to receive additional guidance and assessment for safely managing mobility with peripheral neuropathy.

Winter December 19, 2022 4:53 AM


A MSM report of the start of the COVID Tornado, that is ripping through China.

What a difference a year makes.

2021 was the year autocrats crowed about the weakness and decadence of democracies. [1]

2022 is the year that autocratic leaders and their fans are crash landing into hard reality with high profile autocrats being shunned by voters where they can vote (Drumpf, Bolsenaro), and those that cannot be voted out leading their countries straight down into an abyss of their own making [2]. Xi Jinping is probably the last one this year, but do not hold me to it. There are still 2 weeks left.

Back on topic:

Tech supply chains brace for impact as China shifts from zero-COVID to rampant COVID
Hundreds of millions of cases expected to bring new waves of disruption

It all harks back from the fact that China never formulated a useful COVID exit strategy

The zero Covid policy, which has kept cases and deaths in China to negligible numbers throughout the pandemic, seems doomed to fail in the face of the highly transmissible Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, they believe. But the Chinese leadership does not appear to be mapping a path to a safe exit ramp, leaving experts worried the country could see a tsunami of cases that would swamp its health care system if the national containment effort collapses.
Nov. 30, 2022

[1] Eric Li on the failure of liberal democracy and the rise of China’s way

[2] More Proof That This Really Is the End of History

JokingInTuva December 19, 2022 5:27 AM


Could this lead to something new/interesting in the Global Navigation Satellite Systems business?

Clive Robinson December 19, 2022 6:28 AM

@ Winter, JonKnowsNothing, SpaceLifeForm, ALL,

Re : “China Chain Syndrome”

Yes the “tech press” are starting to pick up on it at last.

Interesting to not that the Register has mebtiined the “dead cat bounce” that will happen that may well lull people into thinking the supply tap is back on…

If we do a little thinking and say,

1, Supply increase untill luna new year.
2, Two week delay for C19 effect to bite.
3, Six week ship time delivery to Western docks/shops.

Expext panic buying to be hitting US and EU MSM around end of April…

So steady stocking up of basics over the next quater to see you through what will be 90-180 days of “no supply” realy is advised. Oh and with basics price inflation likely being another 20-50% and Western job markets on the down turn you might be glad you spend a little now to save a lot later.

However that “three wave” effect means China supply to be unreliable at best for atleast a year after that so spring 2024 will still be seeing issues that are starting now… What happens after that is anybodies guess, but will be quite dependent on how hard the neo-cons bounce back to their “Man of Iron” and “Don’t leave money on the table” nonsense.

JonKnowsNothing December 19, 2022 8:10 AM

@Winter, @Cllive, SpaceLifeForm, ALL

re: a useful COVID exit strategy

I am not sure anyone, anywhere, has formulated a “useful exit strategy”.

China was well aware of what would happen should the virus escape containment. So, their exit strategy is:

  • Let It Rip, because there isn’t anything we can do anymore to stop it

This is the same problem New Zealand had once they opened their quarantine hostels. There were several problems:

  • Compliance Officers breaking the rules allowing sick people to leave
  • Hostel design failed to contain infection (ventilation, packing them in, lack of floor segregation)
  • Australia deliberately sending infected people into New Zealand

Once the infections reached those parts of NZ Social Fabric that are more defiant than compliant (drug community, gangs), it was game over for NZ.

The USA has no strategies whatsoever. None. The MSM is more than happy to bury the C19 news on the back pages, it’s not a popular topic and politicians prefer to not deal with the issue: “last year’s news” attitude.

In California, we are having a “bad outbreak”, C19 combined with RSV, Flu. Hospitals closed, no beds, do not come in, no treatments, free RATs coming. There are no mandates or directives, we are just like the Chinese: left to sort it out ourselves (1).

As far as any global exit strategy it appears to be: RIP and R-I-P for the sick, elderly, very young, and destitution for the LONG COVID survivors.

Alec Beasley: (to Johnny Worricker)

Do you know the saying about “The Yellow Box”? Do not enter unless your exit is clear. Do you have an exit strategy?

Paraphrased from the Johnny Worricker Trilogy


1) I’m in self-isolation. The Food Pantries have been superb in the last week providing me with a trunk drop box of food. Getting any of the viruses floating about would not be good. The $15,000/month drug I use to reduce the effects of my Myeloproliferative Disorder, also means I haven’t got very many antibodies left that are of use.

Clive Robinson December 19, 2022 3:19 PM

@ JonKnowsNothing, SpaceLifeForm, Winter, ALL.

‘I am not sure anyone, anywhere, has formulated a “useful exit strategy”.’

They have, but they are all predicated on certain things remaining true. Which in a dynamic situation is unlikely to stay valid for very long.

The first and most important thing to note is,

1, The mutation rate is inextricably linked to the number of people actively infected.

The second almost as important thing to note is,

2, The infection rate is inextricably linked to the number of suseptable hosts comming into contact with people actively infected.

Thirdly and importantly,

3, The pathogen dies out when it can not come into contact with suseptable hosts.

You actually don’t need to know any more than that to draw up plans of action to limit the effects of the pathogen and it’s potential mutation.

As I’ve indicated before, if early on we had implemented a world wide hard lockdown for thirty five days this whole sorry C19 episode would not have happend and 20million or more people would not have died needlessly. Likrwise who knows how many million would be saved the pain of “long-covid” and potentially the slow untimely deaths due to autoimmune disorders brought about by the virus and anything acting like the virus.

Oh one point to note, the Chinese vaccines are not mRNA thus very narrow acting, they are made by bewing up active virus, then chemically de-activating it.

This means two things,

1, It subjects the body to a very very much wider set of virus RNA to activate it’s immune system.

2, The vaccine does not act like a pathogen in it’s own right causing cell damage and cytokine issues.

But it also means a third very important thing.

3, The current mRNA vaccines are compleatly ineffective against current known wild varients so are currently usless, but not without risk of harm such as destroying heart muscle and giving rise to VF or “Sudden Death Syndrome” in the young. Whilst low in effectivness the Chinese vaccines do work against varients that are in the wild.

But as far as I know from very limited information the current Chinese vaccines don’t cause heart muscle damage.

In the early days of C19 infections the sensible policy without any doubt was hard lockdown. It was only mildly infectious but it was virulent, and there was neither vaccine or effective medication.

Hard lockdown not only stopped the spread it kept the mutation rate down, as the number of infected hosts was low.

Moving into restricted area lockdowns would contain community spreading whilst alowing economic activity to continue. It also still kept the mutation rate down.

If that had been maintained as and when vaccines became available it would have enabled us to “get ahead” of the virus and make it extinct.

Politicians of certain stripes however very deliberatelt avoided this, thus we are now in the mess we are in.

As we don’t have an even minimally effective vaccine in the West and the drug companies have made clear they are not going to make one. But will sell what they know to be compleatly usless at a hundred dollars more per injection you have to ask a number of questions…

Especially as even though usless, the mRNA vaccines as given are now known not to be harmless. It’s known that to a healthy person below thirty that the risk from current C19 variants in the West is very very very small about the same as for a cold, BUT the risk of having the usless booster shot is over a thousand times that… The results of autopsies show heart muscle damage related to the mRNA vaccine indicative of a VF death. What is not known and there is no ethical way to find out, is if it’s the vaccine or the way the vaccine is injected…

What we do know however is that a VF death is not at all pleasant as the body and brain fight to survive. In fact, there is good reason to believe it is probably agonising,

SpaceLifeForm December 20, 2022 5:13 AM

Beware of insiders

They may do reconnaissance on the inside, and learn how to exfiltrate.


Clive Robinson December 20, 2022 10:48 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm, ALL,

Re : Twit implosion

It would appear that Hell-on Rusk has changed the rules again…

Basically you have to pay to vote with Apple users having to pay almost half as much again as others…


Note the comment about Tesla shares being down 60% ouch that has got to hurt…

Could we see Hell-on implode into his own personal singularity?

Rusk as the first black hole of Social media AND Electric Cars…

To (mis)quote the song,

Give me bread and water,
And a guitar in my hand,
All I want’s a psychic
And a free electric van.

(with appologies to Albert Hammond, who after half a century of singing it… ).

Winter December 20, 2022 11:50 AM


Note the comment about Tesla shares being down 60% ouch that has got to hurt…

2022 was the year authoritarian “emperors” were shown to wear no clothes. That holds for would be czars, emperors of the Middle Kingdom, and emperors of Business, eg, Elon. All three destroyed their respective empires by their folly and believe in their invincibility.

As the Greek said millenia ago: Whom the gods would destroy they first make mad [1]

If anything, the leading examples of contemporary unclothed emperors are all convinced of their Devine mission, which is always a sure sign of devinity induced madness.

[1] Obviously, the Greek formulated this quite different:
From Antigone
“τὸ κακὸν δοκεῖν ποτ᾽ ἐσθλὸν τῷδ᾽ ἔμμεν’ ὅτῳ φρένας θεὸς ἄγει πρὸς ἄταν” to mean that “evil appears as good in the minds of those whom god leads to destruction”.

modem phonemes December 20, 2022 1:00 PM

An older article perhaps of interest to this blog concerned with social implications of technologies.

“… The completion of Mr. Wells’s discovery is this — that, since the technical and scientific age began, our imaginations have failed utterly and miserably to keep pace with our inventive ability. We invent something and then fail to use it to its logical capacity, one result being to throw men out of work without creating enough new work to reabsorb them and many more.“

modem phonemes December 20, 2022 6:46 PM

The truth, as determined by the modern scientific method, continues to ”wear off”.

“ The idiosyncratic nature of how researchers’ results and conclusions varied is a previously underappreciated explanation for why many scientific hypotheses remain contested. These results call for greater epistemic humility and clarity in reporting scientific findings.”

Mind your p values, y’all.

Clive Robinson December 20, 2022 7:46 PM

@ pup vas, ALL,

Re : Doppler detection of life.

“Suicide watch prison sensor keeps an eye on inmates”

Actually it did not start off as a “suicide watch” detector.

It started life as a Doppler Radar for movment in rooms to detect intruders and the like.

Back in the late 1980’s as the price of the electronics had dropped I was trying to design a detector to use in Hotels for the environment controls.

But simply a hotel can save one heck of a lor of money by turing down the Heating or air-con and the lights off when people are not in the room.

The problem the units running at around 3cm (10-12GHz) could not detect heavy sleepers under lots of bed clothes…

Yes you could see breathing but you could also see 100/120hz from florescent lighting and other “discharge / ionized systems. Whilst a “direct connection to the deyector with leaky integrator would alow low frequencies from breathing the close in phase noise made it all but impossible to make it reliable.

So 20-25years later they managed to get it to work enough to trial…

I suspect they needed to use “Digital Signal Processing”(DSP) to try and “track” a signal, but anyone with certain types of heart condition like AF are not going to be even close to reliably detected.

So I suspect the “trials” when tried not on healthy prison guards but frequently ill inmates did not go well (illness especially circulatory illness is way higher in the inmate population than it is in similar age ranges outside of prison).

There are of course other factors such as false negative/positive effects. Anoying as constant triggering might be, it’s not as anoying as an enquiry into a dead body in a cell.

Which brings up the other issue, “look-in guards” will see “preperation” in progress where as you need to be effectively dead for the doppler. This means that it probably turned out to be not very effective as CPR or De-Fib has to be done within a minute or two at the most…

You are effectively already dead when your body enters “agonal breathing”. It is near usless at getting oxygen into the body, but it is the bodies autonomous systems last gasp before the already started organ failure becomes terminal… By which time the heart is probably too damaged and the chance of resucitation down below 5% and less than 1% when agonal breathing stops…

Tou can look this stuff up in medical journals, but also it’s the reason why the leathal injection is not just potasium chloride (causes the K-Wave that disrupts electrical conduction in the heart, causing a fatal heart attack and agonizing death if still concious).

lurker December 20, 2022 9:28 PM

@pup vas, Clive Robinson
re: Doppler detectors

It must be going on 40 yrs ago an acquaintance a couple of pay grades above me was proudly showing off his new intruder alarm. The kitchen was 3 metres round a corner out of sight yet slowly opening the fridge caused a mass of cold air to cross the “beam” and trigger it. The cat was still in learning mode and could evade it on 50% of attempts.

Winter December 21, 2022 4:37 AM

Re: Home alarms

The best report on the installation and use of home intruder alarms comes from Mark Twain:

The McWilliamses And The Burglar Alarm

SpaceLifeForm December 21, 2022 4:42 AM

@ JonKnowsNothing, Clive, Winter, MarkH, ALL

Re: China implosion

URL tells you the headline.


Clive Robinson December 21, 2022 7:31 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm, JonKnowsNothing, MarkH, ALL,

Re : China pulling them in.

“URL tells you the headline.”

Yup, it also reminds me of what the US Slaughter house workers and meat packers were told to do when they were testing positive at three times the average rate,

Not the comment,

‘He [The President] told reporters he was working with Tyson Foods – as opposed to health and workplace safety experts. The order was developed in consultation with corporate industry leaders.

“We’re going to sign an executive order today, I believe, and that’ll solve any liability problems,” Trump said on Tuesday.”

As they say,

“You can not make it up”

Clive Robinson December 21, 2022 8:45 AM

@ Winter,

Re : Consultant rates

By now poor Mr McWilliamse, did not realise that the burglar alarm was not for the conveniance and safety of the burglars… But for the many many all expenses paid journies down from New York of the “Alarm Consultant”…

Oh the thing with the clock, is actually true…

A well known high end security and alarm system purveyor to Banks in Europe, had an indicator on the alarm pannel effectively saying “Call Company”.

One such alarm was installed in a very prestegious bank in a very sophisticated part of Southern Europe that attracted the wealthy and the beautiful for “The Summer Season”.

Every year at “High Season” the indicator would light up and the bank would call the company and the same senior technician would be sent.

It would take him a while, as he was only alowed in the bank during their short open hours. But he would persevere and the indicator would be extinquished after several days and he would return exhausted and fill out his expenses which due to the nature of the location were high as the season.

Well the senior technician got promoted and could not make it that year. So a less senior technician was sent instead… He fixed the problem in an hour and was much to the bank managers amazement on his way with no more than travel and lunch expenses.

What that young junior technician had done was “to turn the clock off”.

The indicator was only there to remind the system operator that a “service call” was “overdue” it was not part of the actual alarm…

It appears that for several years the senior technician who had installed the alarm originally, had been having an “all expenses paid” holiday amoungst the rich and beautiful…

Apparently his new found seniority did not last very long, nor did his employment as an “in the field” representative of the high end security and alarm system purveyor.

Oh and the person who told me the “Holiday Alarm” story back in the early 1980’s was once a young junior technician “working his way through college”… I met him when he was doing a Masters in Robotics at University and his name was “Mr Crook”. He went on to become a Software Consultant developing some interesting Unix applications in the 1990’s at a company I had worked for and had given him the nod.

The owner of that company said it was my telling of the “Holiday Alarm” story that pursuaded him to offer the job to Steve as he was obviously of a certain mind set.

JonKnowsNothing December 21, 2022 8:58 AM

@Clive, @ SpaceLifeForm, MarkH, ALL

re: COVID tornado REAP

There are 2 types of reports coming from China atm.

1) Lamenting that China never bought mRNA vaccines from USA. Sort of the Lost Market Opportunity problem. The folks without vaccinations tend to be elderly who prefer TCM Traditional Chinese Medicine. TCM is popular in the West too and offers options Western Medicine doesn’t. Placebos work, in both medical systems.

2) Nothing. In the Nothing category we have just that: nothing. The CDC is sending a team to China (just imagine that chit chat). To do… what? Oh! There are new variants! Oh dear! The West better get their samples before The Great Mutations hit the planet.

The expectation is, it will be a Fast Sweep of the population. 3 Sweeps in 3 months (Dec 2022-March 2023). If the Sweeps happen quick enough there won’t be time for a lot of mutations.

Winter December 21, 2022 9:43 AM


If the Sweeps happen quick enough there won’t be time for a lot of mutations.

Mutations depend on number of replications, not just time. The total number of infections counts, not the time window.

Clive Robinson December 21, 2022 10:27 AM

@ JonKnowsNothing, MarkH, SpaceLifeForm, Winter, ALL

Re: C19 REAPing and THRESHing before WINNOWing.

“There are 2 types of reports coming from China atm”

And next to none at all from Western MSM, which should concern people as to,


I can’t answer that, but as I suspect you know, I’ve my own ideas on that matter.

“The West better get their samples before The Great Mutations hit the planet.”

Whilst like you I see a certain grim humour in the CDC “Going to China” the truth is nothing has changed at the top of the “World Health Organisation”(WHO).

Even now WHO are still playing the fiddle whilst the smoke thickens game beloved by ancient Roman Emperors. So sorry for the guys and girls that work at WHO and actually do excellent things, your bosses will just sit on thier hands yet again…

Yes we need virus strain “samples” but also, we need a whole lot more epidemiological and medical information, that is only just starting to happen let alone be gathered collated, and analyzed.

We are aware that the strains are highly infectious, thus without realy hard population segregation will rip through via community spread.

That however is of a lot lot lesser importance of how virulent the strains are.

It might be that China’s low vaccination rates and mainly naive to C19 population are highly susceptable as happened back in 2019. Where as the West having got 7/10ths to over 9/10ths of their population vaccinated or having had one or more C19 infections have residual immunity that just might make it of lower impact to health care.

But… As I’ve already noted China is the “head” of many “designed to fail badly” supply chains. Which in turn feed into the head of other supply chains. In the UK we have a very old saying,

“The ship was lost for eant of a halfpence of tar”.

So something we might not even realise like an odd type of mechanical widget, or PCB could bring entire sections of the supply and logistics businesses to “crash out”.

Obviously the danger areas are,

1, Communications infrastructure.
2, Energy infrastructure

As nothing physical moves without, them, and unfortunatly due to neo-con idiocy they are so interdependent they are effectively in a mutual suicide pact. One goes they both go and you can not bring either back without the other. Opps so you have to “walk the lines” bringing each bit up by hand…

Then there are,

3, Water Infrastructure
4, Food Supply
5, Medical supply / transportation.
6, Sewage removal Infrastructure
7, Waste removal transportation.

Without any of which we fairly quickly get ill, sick, die, or all in succession.

So my advice is still, when the Western MSM starts to wake up and panic as they do, we can expect to see not just panic buying by the unprepared but supply chain failures and significant price inflation as well…

So as I’ve said before, get a pantry up and running as you have to assume that power outages will happen and freezers will stop as will your domestic cookers etc… So,

“Stock up with 90-180 days of shelf stable directly consumable foods and water.”

And I’d do it before the end of January latest. As I would expect to see the start of things being obvious shortly there after and issues get going mid March to April at the latest.

If it turns out to be a low impact on the West, you won’t have lost out as food price inflation is running at 20% atleast, and well we are headingvinto a major recession where employnent is at best uncertain.

Oh and for those that can, maybe starting to grow potatoes and sunflowers might not be a bad idea along with beans and similar. What is best grown is quite region dependent.

Clive Robinson December 21, 2022 12:00 PM

@ Bruce, ALL,

UK Guardian newspaper under Cyber-Attack

Whilst it’s currently said to be “ransomware” I suggest an open mind untill a lot more is known.

Because it might not have missed peoples attention that The Guardian has currently been very strongly reporting what goes on in the Ukrane and making Putin look… how does one put it?

Or the fact that recent cyber-attacks have been disguised as “ransomware” when in fact they have been cyber-attacks on organisations and infrastructur related to the conflict.

As I’m known to say from time to time,

“Atribution is hard, very hard”

Especially if you want to get it right… so early caution is advised 😉

MarkH December 21, 2022 12:43 PM


I read that Twain story more than 50 years ago, and its memory remains vivid.

A great introductory read on security engineering.

Clive Robinson December 21, 2022 12:56 PM

@ &ers, Winter, AL,

You might find this of interest,

Apparently “softly softly” towards Russian espionage behaviour is now off the books.

But I have to wonder with Germany nationalising it’s major energy company with the major shareholder being Finnish, just how much of this is in part to cover-up the “bad-news” of,

Which is perhaps the worst EU coruption scandle since 1999…

vas pup December 21, 2022 2:57 PM

@Winter • December 21, 2022 4:37 AM Thank you! Good reading.
Couple dogs will be better: on small working as a bell and second huge and cruel for actual attack until owner prepare own firearm to fight back.

vas pup December 21, 2022 2:59 PM

Israeli-founded cybersecurity startup Snyk raises $196.5 million in fresh funds

“US-based cybersecurity startup Snyk, founded by Israeli entrepreneurs, said it raised $196.5 million from investors in a Series G funding round at a lower company valuation of $7.4 billion.

Founded in 2015 by Israeli entrepreneurs Guy Podjarny, Assaf Hefetz, and Danny Grander, Snyk
==>helps software developers and companies integrate security solutions into their workflows as they are building applications from code to cloud to protect them against sophisticated cyber attacks.

The funding round comes as Snyk has been eyeing an initial public offering over the past year targeting a market value of more than $8.6 billion, Bloomberg reported last December. The startup was said to have been speaking to banks to get ready for a listing as soon as mid-2022.”


Israel’s Illusive gets snapped up by US cybersecurity firm Proofpoint

“Israeli cybersecurity firm Illusive Networks, a developer of deception technology used to detect targeted hacker attacks, has entered into an agreement to be bought by US cybersecurity firm Proofpoint Inc. for an undisclosed sum.

==>The acquisition will allow Proofpoint to strengthen its “threat and information protection platforms by adding proactive identity risk discovery and remediation as well as a strong post-breach defense capability,” to better protect enterprises from cyberthreats such as ransomware? and identity-based data breaches, the firm said in a statement.

!!!Illusive’s software prevents cyberattacks by taking away the one thing attackers need to succeed – access to privileged identities, the firm says.

Illusive has pioneered a new paradigm of cybersecurity tech in which an invisible layer of security is overlaid on a system, set up to counter hackers who are able to breach traditional defenses. Finding data thus becomes an elusive task for hackers, because they are distracted by illusory data points that are designed to lead them in the wrong direction. When attackers act upon the false information, Illusive neutralizes the attack and triggers a detailed breach report enabling security administrators to detect, track and contain the attack in its early stages.

“Illusive is solving a problem that others cannot by focusing on protecting identity security vulnerabilities and stopping the menace of ransomware, which has galvanized worldwide demand for our solution,” said Illusive founder and CEO Israeli.

This is the fourth acquisition by Proofpoint in Israel after buying Israeli-founded ObserveIT, a maker of software that identifies insider cybersecurity threats, in 2019. The firm acquired FireLayers, focused on cloud security, in 2016, and MetaNetworks, which secures access networks.”

Clive Robinson December 21, 2022 11:24 PM

@ SpaceLifeForm,

Re : Crypto GCM mode, nonce size.

You might find this interesting,

Wether you agree with what’s said / suggested or not about nonce usage[1], simply thinking about it is worth while. Not just specifically to GCM mode around AES or in a more general sense of crypto-algorithms[2], but also in wider security such as access control generation/protection for “crossing the wire” etc.

Oh and reading the bit past the Hell-on Rusk weed-whacking about E2EE security and security design in general is also worth looking through in,

[1] On the face of it “nonces” or “numbers used once” appear simple and in many ways they are from a theoretical/proof viewpoint. However people make the mistake on the practical side of just mentally filing under “random” and way more dangerously “pseudo-random”.

[2] Nearly a decade ago Mathew Green had a nicely readable little rant about issues with crypto algorithm modes,

It’s always worth a re-read. He’s not the only one. People tend to forget that many modes are a form of “stream cipher” in disguise and what the implications of that are.

Nick Levinson December 22, 2022 12:19 AM

FBI database security was cracked and contents were posted for sale: FBI’s Vetted Info Sharing Network ‘InfraGard’ Hacked, in Krebs on Security.

This weakens, albeit without destroying, my recent claim that some agencies are likely very good at IT security. This db may not be the agency’s crown jewels, but it wasn’t trivial, either, and, given its contents and the FBI’s need to be trusted by its partners, I’d have expected it to be behind solid security that would wrap almost all its IT assets.

Clive Robinson December 22, 2022 12:46 AM

@ Bruce, ALL

Okta Source code stolen

This is a “fun one” to think about…

According to Bleeping Computer,

“Okta, a leading provider of authentication services and Identity and Access Management (IAM) solutions, says that its private GitHub repositories were hacked this month.”

Except for it’s “commercial value” should not be of “security interest” ie “just another cracked cloud service”

Which is effectively what David Bradbury, Okta’s CSO put in an email,

“[Okta] does not rely on the confidentiality of its source code as a means to secure its services.”

Which is hopefully correct (only time will tell).

However as Bleeping Computer notes,

“It’s been a difficult year for Okta with its series of security incidents and bumpy disclosures.”

Including a previous loss of product source code. Which raises the $64,000 question of

“Why a cracker might want the code?”

Hopefully Okta’s CSO is correct, but as they say “a trip comes before a fall”.

Nick Levinson December 22, 2022 1:16 AM

Facial recognition was allegedly used to identify and remove a lawyer from a public event at a privately-owned venue, the lawyer being with a law firm that sued the venue’s parent company on behalf of a client but the removed lawyer herself not working on that litigation: Gizmodo article.

Restaurants might like this application of the technology, because many of them want to know if a reviewer is dining so they can pay special attention to the reviewer, while many reviewers want to be incognito in order to get the same food and service other customers get and in order thereby to write a fairer review.

Clive Robinson December 22, 2022 7:04 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm, JonKnowsNothing,

Re : C19 and comorbidity risk.

We have discussed the fact that high BMI has a double if not tripple effect on the effective virulence of C19 in an individual.

The upshot being lower BMI is better. However it’s fairly obvious that standard dieting even agressive calorific restriction are ineffective in many and have a “fly-wheel” effect in others where comming of such diets causes not just rapid regain but significant overshoot on BMI. So leading to an exponentially increasing boom-bust cycle limited only by the person progressing into variois forms of organ damage. Which in turn causes suppression of the immune system.

A couple of papers of interest the first from the Journal of Eating Disorders (JED) is only indicative due to sample size (3) and no control group. But it is in line with other findings going back over decades but mainly “ignored due to mantra”,

But why the “mantra” well I’ve been over that in the past and the faux-findings used by the individual to get status/power, so I won’t go into it again except to say further evidence that it’s caused millions ruined lives and early deaths and a high susceptability to pathogens such as C19,

Unlike the first paper this is a review of previous decision making over the “Healthy Heart” mantra and how it ignored not just the science, but how the decision makers ignored their own research, thus caused considerable harm to women and those under thirty by forcing a non nutritionaly ballanced diet onto them. Unsuprisingly causing susceptability via suppressed immune systems.

The author also has some tweets but the twitter algorithm appears broken currently, so a thread-reader link instead,

Clive Robinson December 22, 2022 7:26 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm,

You might also find this of interest, when you get past the opening chaff,

It used to be the case that the thymus used to get taken out during heart surgery due to the method used to access the heart…

Basically they cut out your breast bone which the thymus is attached to taking it out. They then rib spread using a technique not to disimilar to a medieval method of tortuous execution…

When they put you back together the thymus is effectively damaged beyond repair so it’s removed… As the thymus is the first step in T-Cell production it’s loss caused immune system compromise…

SpaceLifeForm December 23, 2022 2:42 AM

Texas Hard Freeze

In my neck of the woods, temp -9F, wind chill -24F.

In Houston, temp 21F, wind chill 4F.

Not expected to get above freezing until Saturday afternoon.

Will the pipelines freeze up again? If I had to bet, I would say yes.

Winter December 23, 2022 6:17 AM


Will the pipelines freeze up again? If I had to bet, I would say yes.

Your governor vows the grid will hold [1] as does ERCOT [2], so I also assume it will indeed collapse again.

The signs are good for your bet [3]. And not only for Texas [4].

[1] Texas Governor Vows Grid Will Run Robustly in Upcoming Freeze

[2] ‘

[3] **Houston freeze live updates: Supply is fine, but ERCOT may have underestimated power demands*”

[4] ‘

SpaceLifeForm December 23, 2022 7:33 AM

@ Winter

Fortunately, I am not in Texas.

I do have to endure Governor F12 Right Click though.

Clive Robinson December 23, 2022 8:21 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm,

Re : Industrial Security down south.

With regards the very real industrial security risk to infrastructure, thus energy supply on which nearly all technology thus other security relies,

“Will the pipelines freeze up again? If I had to bet, I would say yes.”

I for one would not take that bet…

The short answer “Insuficient time and fiscal resources”.

The long answer,

It depends on what bits froze first last time and how well they have been insulated[1], heated, or otherwise protected[2] by now.

I do not believe they have had the skilled man power, equipment and the finance to pay for them in the less than a year working time they have had.

Yes the PR people will say “nothing to worry about” or similar.

However I’m betting that a careful eye on the travel plans of executives families will in part reveal what the executives actually think…

But… From “Industrial Security” to “Domestic Security”… Knowing low temps were coming and will get worse year by year on average for the foreseeable future. Do your domestic circumstances alow you to mitigate in some way?

Obviously having a bonfire in a Condo is not recommend and applying sensible insulation to rented accommodation can be difficult at best. Which leaves many people vulnerable in Texas judging by what has been reported in trade journals etc since last year.

Some other non trade journals have covered DIY mitigation, some of which are “heating” by the burning of fuels[3] but these are not for amateurs or the inept. Even experienced people working in the trade have died from installing the likes of generators due to underestimating certain things like carbon monoxide cooling thus not rising up flues effectively.

[1] Normally most people only think about “insulating the outside” of pipes as that is their experience with house hold water pipes. However with the liquid in the pipe being more effective at taking thermal energy out than wind chill on the outside of the pipe the dynamics get a little more interesting… Think of a valve inside an unheated building but where water might have got inside the bearings etc due to say condensation run down, caused by the liquid inside the pipe making the valve colder than ambient inside the building. Now if you know that outside tempratures don’t get cold enough to freeze the liquid inside the pipe, an accountant or similar might ask “Why insulate the pipe?” few can answer that from knowledge. Well the answer is, if “wind chill” on the outside of the pipe brings the liquid inside the pipe down to the external air temprature then the liquide moving through the inside of the valve will fairly quickly get down to that tenprature regardless of how much insulation you put around the outside of the valve (in fact adding insulation would make the problem worse…). So any condensation that has got into the valve mechanics –and you can not stop it in many cases,– will freeze solid and do damage and the valve will “bind and fail”.

[2] From [1] it can be seen that any thermal conductor in contact with the fluid in the pipe will act as a very large “heat sink” heating it to keep it above the freezing point of water is going to be expensive to put it mildly and potentially very dangerous. There are other solutions such as immersing the workink parts of the valve in a “brine” that stops the water freezing to below the temprature of the pipe fluid. A brine made with calcium chloride (E509) can stop water freezing as low as -52C, it also has the advantage of being very absorbant. Thus a carefully designed system using calcium chloride dehumidifier cartridges will work better. However they require “regular maintenance” that both shareholders and thus senior managment hate and do their utmost to “cost reduce / remove”…

[3] I know some have invested in those “truck heaters” from China that produce upto 8kWH heat from diesel or similar fuel. I’ve even read an article where one person extracted residual heat from the hot exhaust gasses to heat water they kept flowing in their central heating system. Thus kept one or two rooms at livable temps and the other rooms at a little above freezing.

Clive Robinson December 23, 2022 10:47 AM

@ Winter, SpaceLifeForm,

Re : US and infrastructure.

“USA and infrastructure, an unhappy marriage.”

And the divorce rate is high as well.

Just as with “Women” the view on US infrustructure is often “the younger the better” thus there is a habit of getting rid of it whilst it is young.

So many US homes for instance are built little better than a garden shed with “lip gloss on the pig”.

Thus the trend is spend as little on the “shed” that is the fabric of the building and put the money into the “lip stick” that washes off so easily, you have an almost guarenteed business slaping it on again in a couple of years…

The theory is it will be “divoced” from the owner in a couple of decades at most, and sent to the slaughter house not much more than a decade or two later. So the pig has maybe half a century on average.

So gets built accordingly…

For instance did you know that many reinforced concrete structures only have a fourty year life?

Something to remember if you buy accommodation in a converted office or hotel block that originally went up in the last decade or two of the last century…

Sadly the US mentality appears to be,

“Knock it out cheap and quick, and make a sucker pay pay pay”

But do you want that mental attitude also building the infrustructure on which many lives depend?

Well if you are a neo-con share holder ready to jump investments faster than a flea in a hot griddle pan, then “yes”, especially if you know it’s not going to touch you.

If however you realise your life depends on it, your attitude is much more likely to be “no”…

lurker December 23, 2022 12:14 PM

Our local MSM observed Denver temp. drop from +5C to-15C in one hour.

Meanwhile in this hemisphere last week wet soil conditions improved enough to get the ploughs and planters on; this week the irrigators are being put in place.

lurker December 23, 2022 12:42 PM

I have trouble to parse or pass their name. Who do you trust? If they’re making money from the service, that has to be a negative factor in the calculation.

Winter December 23, 2022 1:59 PM


But do you want that mental attitude also building the infrustructure on which many lives depend?

I am puzzled by the culture in both the America’s of “we are just passing by”. It is also found in eg, Argentina, where the rich move out at every crisis.

On the other hand, the USA has tax/GDP of 27% while Germany has 37%. That difference in available money will make itself shown somewhere. I sust especially in infrastructure.

It is like the levies of New Orleans. Why pay to protect a city you will leave anyhow. Then the city is destroyed and someone else has to pay for its reconstruction, eventually.

Santa December 23, 2022 2:45 PM

By Andrew Court
December 20, 2022 6:48pm Updated

“The case left doctors shell-shocked.

A French hospital was partially evacuated Saturday after a senior citizen
arrived with a World War I artillery shell lodged in his rectum.

The 88-year-old patient visited Hospital Sainte Musse in Toulon to have the
antique explosive removed — but instead sparked a “bomb scare,”
French publication Var-Matin reported.

“An emergency occurred from 9 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. on Saturday evening that
required the intervention of bomb disposal personnel, the evacuation of
adult and pediatric emergencies as well as the diversion of incoming
emergencies,” a hospital spokesperson stated.

“We had to manage the risk in a reactive framework,” the rep added.
“When in doubt, we took all the precautions.”

Bomb disposal experts at the scene determined there was little possibility
the shell would explode inside the man.

“They reassured us by telling us that it was a collector’s item from
the First World War, used by the French military,” the hospital stated.

Stunned doctors subsequently began the process of trying to remove the
object — which measured almost 8 inches long and more than 2 inches wide
— from the man’s rectum.

It’s believed the pervy patient inserted the item up his anus for sexual

“An apple, a mango, or even a can of shaving foam, we are used to finding
unusual objects inserted where they shouldn’t be,” one doctor declared.
“But a shell? Never!”

Medics were forced to take the elderly man into surgery, cutting open his
abdomen in order to remove the relic.

According to the hospital, he is now in “good health” and is expected
to make a full recovery from the surgery.”

Clive Robinson December 23, 2022 2:56 PM

@ Popcorn lovers of the world…

If you’ve been wondering where the real suspects have been recently it appears Arizona has been a magaificent place this past couple of days…

And it would appear the Canadians love a good recline with a large bowl to chow down on, whilst watching from afar…

Though there is a lack of indication as to the taste, salty or sweet…

Maybe both I hear “salty caramel” is an upand coming flavor… Though I still love the rarity of “hard cheddar with bitter orange marmalade”.

Clive Robinson December 23, 2022 5:19 PM


“Man with WWI explosive lodged in his rectum sparks bomb scare, hospital evacuation”

I suspect just saying “I’ll avoid making the obvious joke” will make most just think it anyway…

But actually this is not exactly a new phenomenon. I first remember one being reported in the media from the UK in the 1970’s where a man apparently had been “prolapsing his piles with a Mills bomb and lost his grip” (which leads to another “obvious joke” observation).

Back in the 1980’s a friend who was way smarter than most of the rest of our group put together had worked out how to avoid working for a living and thus enjoy his young adult life as a semi free spirit / hippy type.

He had been left what in the US they call a “Trust Fund” by a maiden aunt which would pay up when he was thirty (you could do that in England back then). But there was a clause for “Payment of education” which gave him a reasonable sum to live off whilst in education. What he worked out showed that he was atleast a little bit smarter than the average bear 😉

He went and found the longest running education course he could which was medicine. The money he got he used to pay the mortgage on a large slightly ramshakle house close to the University that he rented out five of the eight large rooms to other students. The income from which he lived off some and invested the spare in another property. He also got himself an evening job working in a bar, even though technically “financially independent” from the unearned rental income.

His problem was how to keep his near idilic –for him– lifestyle going. Well he was passing his exams at A+ rating which ment he was heading rapidly to qualifing early. Then shock horror he failed one exam sufficient that he would have to re-do the year… He got through the following year, and mentored a lot of the other first year students. Then shock horror the year after that his A+ ratings just became a fail for his “second year” (actually third calender year). So he’d got another couple of years onto what should have been a five year course. The problem was the University worked out what he was upto and told him if he deliberately failed a year again they would drop kick him out the door, and that would end his idilic life style.

Well he decided there was still a trick he could pull and that was with his thesis. He could make a submission that would be rejected for some reason argue it out and get another year that way… But how to do it, that was the burning question, that as he put it one evening was, turning into a right pain in the 455. The group had by that time had a good meal –I cooked– and afew glasses of his very fine home brewed “Brain lubricant” by that point, and one person present suggested jokingly that it should be something involving “Moral Turpitude”. A subject we had been discussing earlier as she had just come back from a trip to the US and it’s there as a question on the imigration card. But oh 99% of people –or other statistic pulled out of the air– have no idea what Turpitude means only that they should just say no to the question[1] (then go ahead and do it anyway, after all “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” along with your money Right? 😉

So we all made joking suggestions one of which was as we were doing the dishes and crocks “Sexual abuse of household implements” (something for which there was later actually a Dilbert cartoon about…).

Well over the weekend he drew it up into a “scholarly sounding” proposal printed it out on the dot-matrix printer and submitted it, along with some citations to show it was in theory a valid field of research…

Well after he submitted it the University called his bluf and he was apparebtly told “You’ve made your bed now lie in it! go get on with it”…

So what to do, remember this was a time when the Internet let alone the World Wide Web did not exist in the UK, and personal computers were more home video games machines on 8bit processors than anything else. I owning an Apple ][ and an IBM PC clone and PC-Junior was considered rather more than just a nerd (the fact I’d come within a hairs bredth of being the UK’s first Cyber-Criminal had not helped my good reputation[2] as a normal Uni-Student hippy/bum).

So being a member of the British Medical Association, he placed a tiny little advert asking “General Practitioners(GPs) for any “cases” they could let him have as refrence material. He thought he might get a handfull at most, just enough to get him out of trouble.

Well was he ever surprised… the University was not at all happy with the result, of several mail bags turning up for him. After opening and sorting the stack was over four feet high and needed a couple of it’s own four draw filling cabinets (medical research materials need to be kept appropriately…).

Of the research materials he got, he had enough stories to “dine out on” for years, and the best that can be said is “If man can make it, then man can abuse it, in ways that confound mans imagination”.

Any way he passed and eventually became a heart surgeon, who went on a six month exchange to Holland and “never came back”. Some Dutch Nurse –later Doctor– played and won at “capture the flag” with his heart, and he’s now a respected “grandfather” both professionaly and socially.

And yes his children have heard some of those Turpitude stories, as apparently medicine runs in the family, for which he of course blaims his wife, not the fact he is still a “hippy-student” type at heart who’s very many interests in life as he puts it “gives me no time but to do the job right the first time” 😉

[1] It turns out it’s one of those words that are not supposed to have “testable meaning” like “random” it’s “hand wavey” and is one of those things that is covered by the expression “You know it when you see it”. Loosly it means “base behaviour or depravity” a point of view which obviously changes as society does.

[2] I’ve told the story before, but it involved something called BT Gold and how I put a report on something called “Micronet-800” on BT Prestel over “The Big Red Mac” incident on the BBC Micro Live programme. How BT and the Met-Police fraud squad tried to “set me up” and how my sixth sense that something stank stopped me walking into it (something that Steve Gold and Robert Schifreen did not avoid[3]).

[3] The story of “The Great Prestel Hack” gets richer on every retelling, something that anoyed Steve. For instance you find the likes of,

Which has never ever seen the overview of someone with first hand knowledge and is “starry eyed” imprecission at best. Often the press and many authors conflate two seperate incidents, neither of which was ever a “hack” but stupidity by BT personnel in both cases. And as they say the shamed try to hide their deeds, by rewriting history where they can… So non-hacks are now the heroic deeds of mighty hackers thus worthy opponents to be defeated by… Such rewriting is usually only available to victors and the powerfull. Well as I was informed many years later that the instructions behind trying to set me up had come from the “Prime Minister” who was “Mad Maggie” Thatcher. Who was at the time trying to sell off BT (or as we used to call it because of it’s logo of the time “The Big 7 incher”). Thus she would not tolerate any bad press, it all had to be crushed and expunged… So an abject lesson in “Power Politics” where “the might is right”.

Clive Robinson December 23, 2022 6:54 PM

@ Winter, ALL,

Re : Spend a little save even less.

“That difference in available money will make itself shown somewhere.”

It does… The real cost difference on infrastructure that fails before 50years and that designed to last twice or five times as long is actually very small as little as one or two percent on material costs for increased quality.

But, it also has a significant but not often mentioned cost. That is of maintaining it.

Your average annual spend on maintaining infrastructure is almost directly related to the inverse of it’s design life time. So fifty year infrastructure costs three to five times more each and every year –before inflation– to maintain than infrastructure designed for a much longer life that cost just a couple of cents more in the dollar…

The obvious one is wood v. metal for structural members. But also the type of metal and how you coat it.

For instance corrugated metal sheeting if made from aluminium made with a hard anodised then coated with appropriate “paint” will last more than twenty years without any attention and very probably a century or more with minimal attention. However corrugated iron that’s been zinc or worse coated frequently starts rusting immediately or within three years at the most, thus needs continuous rust removal and painting. Whilst you can not now use it lead finishing on church roofs has been known to easily last several centuries only requiring maintainance after particularly tempestuous or bad weather.

Winter December 24, 2022 3:12 AM


He had been left what in the US they call a “Trust Fund” by a maiden aunt which would pay up when he was thirty (you could do that in England back then). But there was a clause for “Payment of education” which gave him a reasonable sum to live off whilst in education.

I never thought such things happened for real. It is also the plot driver of Roger Zelasny’s Doorways in the Sand

Winter December 24, 2022 4:02 AM

Re: Texas/USA Freeze

Xmas has not even started

Houston freeze live updates: ERCOT asks feds for permission to run at ‘maximum’ power

Massive winter storm brings rolling blackouts, power outages

Clive Robinson December 24, 2022 5:19 AM

@ Winter, ALL,

Re : Trust Funds

“I never thought such things happened for real.”

Oh they do, and were an essential part of “inheritance planning” for your children or grand children as UK Death Duties are criminal to put it politely.

Because they were so important a lot of capital got tied up in then that was uesfully being invested.

But a certain politician and alledged “close” friend both of whom were very very “self entitled” agressive and unpleasently minded decided that they should have that investment money to waste on buying votes and paying off their chums working financial scams for them.

So a rule was brought in that such trust funds had to be given at the age of 18 when people are fiscally about as irresponsible as they will ever be.

Essentially making the setup of a trust fund pointless for tax planning or that the money would get frittered away rapidly so make the economy appear more boyant than it realy was…

Clive Robinson December 24, 2022 5:46 AM

@ Winter, SpaceLifeForm, ALL,

Re: Texas Freeze as a portent

“Xmas has not even started”

No, so that tsunami of domestic energy usage the holiday brings is going to play “smack-down” rather heavily on an already failing network…

Maybe Texan’s should go to “New York” for Xmas it might be less expensive… But we’ve all heard that “Fairy Tale” before and can all sing the third verse[1] where they say what they think of each other… Which maybe Texan’s should sing at their political representatives so in the pocket of a morally and ethically corrupt energy market.

Any way it’s “Christmas Eve” today, so for everyone I hope your winter solctice celebrations go enjoyably and relaxingly well.

My plans involve a good book, and the intention of getting between that cosy couple of duvet and lecy-blanket and no turkey in sight fowl or otherwise 😉

[1] NSFW Warning,

Winter December 24, 2022 8:58 AM


No, so that tsunami of domestic energy usage the holiday brings is going to play “smack-down” rather heavily on an already failing network…

US Christmas lights use more energy than entire countries

SpaceLifeForm December 24, 2022 9:24 AM

@ Clive

Re: Soatok on Bug Bounty

He brought this up yesterday because of the LastPass problem.

Trust is easy to lose and difficult to regain.

From what I am reading, LastPass has lost trust.

The users have to change all of their KeyMat, and many of them are going to use a different password manager. I’ve seen KeePassXC mentioned a few times.

Clive Robinson December 24, 2022 9:30 AM

@ ALL,

Re : Not a happy Xmas Crypto-Coins

It appears that the brief slow down in the freefall of crypto-coins –due to the FTX colapse and other scandles– is now at an end…

Whilst the words “freefall” and “crash” might not be as pessimistic as “cryptopocalypse” and “contagion warning” the truth is both Bitxoin and Ethereum are very definitely heading south,

As was indicated just a few days ago, by the governor of the Reserve Bank of India, Shaktikanta Das,

“[cryptocurrencies] have no underlying value, [and] they have huge inherent risks for our macroeconomic and financial stability. I am yet to hear any credible argument about what public good or what public purpose it serves.”

Thus come to,

“Our view is that [cryptocurrency] should be prohibited because if you try to regulate it and allow it to grow, please mark my words the next financial crisis will come from private cryptocurrencies

JonKnowsNothing December 24, 2022 10:20 AM

@Clive, @ Winter, SpaceLifeForm, ALL,

Re: Texas Freeze & back up batteries

In prior years, people would buy gasoline powered generators to tied them over from power outages (hurricanes, tornadoes, etc). If they had enough funds they would get a dual fuel or multi-fuel generator (petrol, diesel, natural gas or propane).

Small canisters of propane are sold for BBQ cookers and outdoor heaters. All it takes is to swap the connector to the generator. ~$30USD

Now, they are investing in backup batteries. Not house sized ones but big enough to run the fridge or power the microwave for a while. Coupled with portable folding solar panel kits for recharging until the power comes back on. ~$400USD for the battery ~$1000-1500USD for the portable solar panel kit.

An interesting shift driven by the needs of people living in RVs by choice or necessity. The use of a variety of tech designed to power a 12ft long trailer, is making its way into residential use. None of which is connect to the grid. None of which is doing Co-Gen. These are way cheaper systems than a roof top system and will power the TV and popcorn maker and LEDs just as well as central electrical system.

Clive Robinson December 24, 2022 10:27 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm, ALL,

Re : Do not use “Human Trust”.

“From what I am reading, LastPass has lost trust.”

They should never have been given it in the first place.

If people use “Human Trust” rather than “InfoSec Trust” then as the old saying has it,

“They are cruising for a bruising”

All InfoSec ultimately is based on a “Root of Trust” also called a “Shared Secret”. Basic common sense says that the sharing should only be between the ‘communicating parties”, and preferably the secret is only “one time use”.

LastPass like all these online pasword managers are,

1, An unrequired untrustable third party.
2, A vulnerability beyond your control that will fail.
3, A high value target to attackers due to the volume of secrets held.

People need to understand that no matter what clever tricks online password managment services claim they can not provide security to the “shared secrets” they hold.

So, some have now found the hard way they,

“have to change all of their KeyMat, and many of them are going to use a different password manager. I’ve seen KeePassXC mentioned a few times.”

A simple question for them,

“Why do they think KeePassXC is any more turntable even in the human sense than LastPass?”

When they can sensibly answer it, with “we can not” then they will have started down the path of understanding.

Now I know someone at some point will say “but only for unimportant accounts” or similar…

The problem is there is no such thing as an “unimportant account” they all “leak information” as do the shared secrets you use.

You give all of that to a third party business you have no control over, yet others –who do not have your best interests at heart– do have control, lots of it. Whilst you as an individual can only loose by it. And loose you will at some point –as LastPass has demonstrated– yet you will never gain…

Clive Robinson December 24, 2022 1:22 PM

@ JonKnowsNothing, SpaceLifeForm, Winter, ALL,

Re : Solar Generators

“These are way cheaper systems than a roof top system and will power the TV and popcorn maker and LEDs just as well as central electrical system.”

A lot cheaper than many think..

330w panels can be had for $100
LiPo4 Batteries of sensible capacity likewise $100

Four panels and two batteries and another $50 of electronics will run all but the kitchen White Goods electronics in most places (the $50-100 for cables is what makes my eyes water).

Heating these days even when it’s well below freezing can be done by the better Japanese made heat pumps. (air to air, rather than less efficient air to water). The ones supposadly designed for RV’s using CO2 as the working fluid work just as well for one or two rooms in a home (adjacent bedroom and bathroom). A friend has one for each floor of his house and has not had any issues so far.

Few realise just how modern the “Freezer” is which also is generally the largest consumer of electricity over a 24hours period of kitchen white goods. And realistically we don’t need a freezer for anything other than ice-cream. Everything else can be preserved in a “shelf stable” way fairly easily…

So yes “off grid” is easily possible in the US. However… The neo-cons who have bought up electricity generation and supply have so rigged the market you can not get sensible kWH pricing, abd worse I’m told in some places they have rigged the legislation or zoning so you can not have an off-grid dwelling, so you pay them $400/year as a tax to have an electrical supply you are not going to use…

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