Category Archives: Internal

About the Fabius Maximus website.

Why do you read us? Here’s why we write.

Summary: Since November 2007 readers of the FM website have made 5.6 million page views on our 3,000+ posts, to which people have made 37,000 comments. The FM website has become an extensively cross-indexed machine on which one can find information and forecasts on a wide range of political and geopolitical subjects (see the right-side menu bar). It’s time to ask “why bother?”

Listening

The FM website contains a wide range of content. Much of this is journalism, in-depth investigation of topics lightly or poorly covered by the news media. That includes large subjects such as climate change, events such as this year’s Ebola and the 2009 Swine Flu epidemics, and narrow stories such as the 2010 Raymond Davis affair and last year’s fear of a super monster El Nino. We also do analysis of large-scale trends, such as our mad foreign empire — and its associated wars — and the 3rd industrial revolution now beginning.

But the FM website differs from other informational websites, which usually have a fixed political perspective but no obvious goal.

Consider Naked Capitalism. It provides a daily list of links to interesting stories plus articles giving long-form analysis. But what’s their goal? The About Page says N.C. is “an effort to promote critical thinking.” Since it provides a carefully filtered diet of information comfortable to Leftists, I doubt that it does so.

I’ve read N.C. daily for years (imo it’s a must-read). My best guess is that it provides entertainment for American’s version of the outer party, middle-rank functionaries in our corporate, government, non-profit, and academic bureaucracies. We read it and feel informed, giving us a feeling of vicarious participants. That’s an oxymoron, as we ‘re powerless participants. We have become subjects, not citizens.

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We’re looking good with a new template & publishing twice as much.

We have completed the transition to the new template (aka Theme) for the FM website. Thank you all for your tolerance during this rocky process. I have only a vague idea how to work this website, but the WordPress staff carried me though. This would not have happened without your donations.   {This is an intermission between today’s 2 posts.}

Also: today we passed a milestone — 5.5 million page views since starting in November 2007.

Welcome: Open For Business

Our faster pace

We’re publishing two posts each weekday, at roughly 5am and 5pm EST. Plus one or two posts on Saturday. The subjects of the morning posts vary across the full range of geopolitics (broadly defined). The afternoon post discusses some aspect of national security.

Some posts are quite technical, more so than you usually find in material written for a general audience. We’re trying to “lift the lid ” off stories in the news by having experts show you the often hidden complexity of most vital public policy issues.

We end the week with a little “culture”, a film or book review on Sunday.

The goal of the FM website remains the same. Not just to describe our situation or diagnose our problems, but to help awaken our spirits so that we act to regain control of America and institute reforms we all know are needed. Post your comments about how well we’re doing.

If you find this material interesting, even useful, consider hitting the tip jar:

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A new format for the Fabius Maximus website!

Your donations have been put to use (see the tip jar to the right). The FM website now runs on a new “theme” (i.e.,  template), one working better with current technology. It appears better on tablets and phones, and has features used by the almost god-like search engines to locate useful answers to people’s requests. Behind the scenes it has more storage, and support from WordPress.

Internet lounge

UpdateIt’s a work in progress.  And thanks to crowd-sourcing (advice from someone who understands these things) I switched to a different theme.

What do you think? Better or worse? Crisp and clear, easy to read? Suitable for our content, or not? Rate it below, and post your review in the comments.

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For your New Year’s Eve festivities: an inspirational speech from a great leader

Our traditional New Year’s post:  As we start a new year we can gain courage by looking at the good aspects of our past and the glimmers of good fortune that lie in our future.  These things are conjured by our myths from the dry pages of history for our eyes to see. From the archives.
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Morpheus speaking to the people of Zion

From The Matrix Reloaded (2003)

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Believe me when I say that we have a difficult time ahead of us.
But if we are to be prepared for it, we must first shed our fear of it.
I stand before you now, truthfully, unafraid.
Because I believe something you do not?
No!
I stand here because I remember.
I remember that I am here not because the path that lies before me,
but because of the path that lies behind me.

What I believe

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As we start a New Year I find it useful to review my core beliefs. It is easy to lose sight of such things amidst the clatter of daily events:

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The 2014 report card for the FM website. What were the top hits?

On this last day of 2014 I’ll interrupt our usual service to thank all you for your support — our readers and authors — those who comment — the authors and periodicals who generously allow their work to be re-published here — and those whose donations support this website.

Scoreboard

Coming soon to the FM website: an electronic scoreboard and sponsors!

 

A report card for the FM website

We ended the year on a strong note, with aprox 106 thousand page views in December. In 2014 the FM website has 311 new posts, bringing the total to 2,917 since opening in November 2007 — over 5 million words.

WordPress doesn’t give the number of comments per year; there have been a total of 35,275 comments posted. Readers vote their opinion of posts by their comments and page views. What’s the score for 2014?

In 2014 I wrote some of my favorite and most popular posts. Number one in 2014, and a record high, was Explaining the season 6 finale of “Castle”, and what’s coming next (May) with 85 thousand hits. It had 66 comments, not even in the top 50. I suspect Castle fans were outraged at my prediction that Richard Castle faked his own death. Since that proved correct, this was also the most successful prediction ever on the FM website, proudly added to the list of “wins”.  We still don’t know why he did it, so that prediction remains open.

Second place with 35 thousand hits went to last week’s post of straight journalism: The FBI told their story about North Korea attacking Sony. Before we retaliate, read what they didn’t tell you. (as was #11, debunking alarmists hype about a super-monster El Nino in 2014).

My personal favorite was #3: The 1% won a counter-revolution while we played. We forgot that we are the crew of America, not passengers. (April), exploring the primary theme of the FM site.

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Good news for your Christmas reading

Summary: For Christmas we deliver our traditional post of good and inspirational news, a break from our usual gloomy but inspirational service. Regular service will resume tomorrow. Best wishes for a Merry Christmas to you all!

Christmas peace

Contents

  1. A special post about Christmas
  2. A video about Christmas history of America’s military
  3. A holiday reminder about gifts to those who defend America
  4. A real Christmas story, for which we should be grateful
  5. Good news about the world
  6. Posts with good news about America

(1)   A special post about Christmas

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From 2011, well worth reading:  I’ll Be Home for Christmas – Marines in WWII.

(2)  A holiday reminder about gifts to those who defend America

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  1. An effective way to support our Troops: help the Blue Star Mothers of America, 8 June 2008 — There are ways to support our troops, actions more effective than a bumper sticker on your car.
  2. Support the USO – more effective than a bumper sticker, 5 July 2008 — Another way to support our troops, more effective than a bumper sticker.

(3)  A video about Christmas history of America’s military

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(4)  A real Christmas story, for which Americans should be grateful

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Here is a Christmas story known to few Americans, which should be read by all:  Washington’s Gift by Thomas Fleming, Wall Street Journal, 24 December 2007 — “Our revolution could have ended in despotism, like so many others.”  Subscription only; an open copy appears at the David Gold website):

There is a Christmas story at the birth of this country that very few Americans know. It involves a single act by George Washington — his refusal to take absolute power — that affirms our own deepest beliefs about self-government, and still has profound meaning in today’s world. To appreciate its significance, however, we must revisit a dark period at the end of America’s eight-year struggle for independence.

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In cyberspace you don’t see your attacker (that’s why we don’t know who hacked Sony).

Our hawks (aka warmongers), with their loyal journalist-enablers, have sparked a new round of hysteria about North Korea’s cyber-attack on Sony. Kim Zetter at Wired gives a good analysis in “North Korea Almost Certainly Did Not Hack Sony“. The Hollywood Report cites insiders pointing to disgruntled current or former employees (Sony has many of both). To understand why we might never know the guilty party, see this post by Marcus Ranum from 2011: attribution of cyberattacks runs from difficult to impossible. Click at the end to see the full post.

Cyberwar: About Attribution (identifying your attacker)

Summary:  Identifying the attacker is the key to modern military defense, so one can launch a reprisal or counter-strike.  But attributing cyberattacks is difficult because nothing in cyberspace has to look like anything familiar. How do you attribute a weapon that was created out of thin air and used by an enemy that has no physical location?  Links to other chapters of this series are at the end.

CyberCrime .

Contents

  1. Cyberspace, Novel Weapons, and Location Independence
  2.  Technology, Language, Culture, and Cui Bono
  3.  A Model For Attribution
  4. About the author
  5. For more information

(1)  Cyberspace, Novel Weapons, Location Independence

Cyberspace does have some unique attributes which are not mirrored in the real world. Such as the nonexistence of “territory”.  There is no “there” there.  Some of the things we are accustomed to taking into account in warfare are missing: hostile forces do not need an ‘assembly zone’ that can be detected and watched. Nor do they have to cross ground — where they leave traces of the type that we’re used to dealing with.

Imagine if a hostile power was going to insert a cover operations team into a target area and wanted to be stealthy enough to achieve plausible deniability. In the past troops could be outfitted with uniforms that had been carefully scrubbed of clues to their origin, “sanitized” weapons, etc. Providing such kit was expensive and exacting work. Inserting them into a target, nowadays, would entail avoiding the ubiquitous video-surveillance cameras, providing false identities under which to travel, laundering funds for the operators, and then having an equally carefully scrubbed extraction plan.

In the real world, this kind of thing is expensive and complex. In cyberspace it is relatively easy and practically free. There are some caveats about the “easy and free” claim, depending on the quality of the defenses that are being attacked but — as we’ve been assured over and over again by our government’s own technical experts — our defenses, to put it bluntly, suck.

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