TOM THE DANCING BUG: Workin' in the Data Mine...

Tom the Dancing Bug, IN WHICH disaster hits the data mines, and the hard-workin' miners barely escape with their careers.

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BE THE FIRST ON YOUR BLOCK to see Tom the Dancing Bug, by @RubenBolling, every week! Members of the elite and prestigious INNER HIVE get the comic emailed to their inboxes at least a day before publication -- and much, much MORE!

Is it hard to join? NO! Just click here.

Published 8:45 am Wed, Jun 12, 2013

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18 Responses to “TOM THE DANCING BUG: Workin' in the Data Mine...”

  1. Gulliver says:

    Except that it isn’t the technicians that call the shots. They and the mid-level bureaucrats are just the ones who get scapegoated to save their masters from accountability. See, we’re contrite, we fired the flunkies we sent to do our dirty work. They’ll never work in this industry again. Their families will pay dearly for our abuses of power. What more penitence could you ask for? Re-elect/re-appoint Senior Asshole for Fuck You!

    • fuzzyfuzzyfungus says:

      Are you saying that they were just following orders?

      • thts what the nazis said.

      • Gulliver says:

        I’m saying if you settle for firing privates instead of generals, you’ll keep fighting the same war of attrition. Some privates are culpable, some are lied to like the rest of us, none give the orders. Strategic victory requires removing the givers of orders from power. But if you’d rather take my comment as an excuse rather than the advice it was intended as, so you can feel satisfied when flunkies get sacrificed, go right ahead. Me, I want to solve this problem for longer than it takes the Teflon dons to hire new flunkies.

        • fuzzyfuzzyfungus says:

          I don’t see this as an ‘either/or’ situation. You certainly want to go for the head; but that doesn’t preclude going after the hatchetmen.

          • Gulliver says:

            Fair enough. I do think Godwining every analyst and coder in the NSA is unhelpful. Authoritarianism is bad, but not all authoritarianism is Nazi bad or genocidal. The effort to win the hearts and minds of the American people should focus on the unconstitutionality of PRISM and the devolution of the FISA Courts from watchdog to rubber stamp. That’s bad enough to raise alarm.

            Crying Nazi is counterproductive, IMO. One reason 56% of people are able to ignore decades of incremental abuses of power is the tendency among those that do not to sound like a broken Godwin. If you want an out-of-control historical precedent to compare it to, compare it to J. Edgar Hoover blackmailing the American government while he used the FBI as his personal private detective agency.

            If the United States government really has become like unto Nazi Germany, then why haven’t you taken up arms against it?

          • Frank Lee Scarlett says:

            “If the United States government really has become like unto Nazi Germany, then why haven’t you taken up arms against it?”
            The majority of Germans didn’t become disillusioned with their government until the tide of the war turned in 1942, rationing went from uncomfortable to  painful, and their cities began to be bombed.

            Conditions in the US are far better than they were in Germany (for the apolitical), even in the best years of ’36-9. I believe flat-screen TVs are still selling well, aren’t they?

            Its going to take a whole lot more discomfort for Americans before we begin to see a sea-change.

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            I know people who grew up in Germany during the rise of fascism. They pretty much all say that they just didn’t notice it happening, or if they did, they couldn’t really believe that it would ever succeed.

          • Gulliver says:

            @Frank Less Scarlett

            The majority of Germans didn’t become disillusioned with their government until the tide of the war turned in 1942, rationing went from uncomfortable to  painful, and their cities began to be bombed.

            I’m sure you can appreciate the difference between saying there is a very real danger of going down the same road that led Germany to fascism – a comparison I agree with, as it happens – and comparing database programmers to Nazis.

            There are more configurations than all is hunky-dory and OMG, we’ve become Nazi Germany! Reading anyone who points that out as not being disillusioned is rather binary thinking. But my disillusionment (actually, I never had any illusions about this) is with what governments do, not with governments themselves or with government in general. Governments and nations are neither good nor evil, it is the people within them that fulfill that criteria by what they do or do not do.

      • phuzz says:

         Perhaps go after the people giving the orders first, then come back later and look at whether the people who carried out those orders had any options.

        • Antinous / Moderator says:

          You can’t get to the people who gave the orders. Ever. Under any circumstances. You probably won’t ever know who they were. But you can make people think twice about carrying them out.

  2. fuzzyfuzzyfungus says:

    That actually used to be the program motto, before the original version was defunded and fragmented into an alphabet soup of different bits and pieces…

    • Gulliver says:

      Yup, knowledge is power. Their state goal is nothing less than “total information awareness” (the IAO’s own words). If you were really paranoid, you might speculate that that emblem was deliberately created to troll conspiratards so that, when Congress defunded the IAO and moved their operations into the NSA, and observant people pointed this out, the PR flunkies could smear concerned citizens as conspiracy theorists. But I tend to believe these assholes are more vain creatures of opportunity than well-organized spin masters.

      • Kimmo says:

        But I tend to believe these assholes are more vain creatures of opportunity than well-organized spin doctors.

        Aren’t these a similar pack of scumbags to those who’ve funded various right-wing thinktanks over the decades?

  3. thecleaninglady says:

    “Tweeeeeet” … genius :)

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