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Online Comics => Escape From Terra => Topic started by: spudit on April 11, 2011, 12:39:18 am

Title: Back on Ceres again
Post by: spudit on April 11, 2011, 12:39:18 am
Clarification of time scale please, didn't the formerly olde pharts spend a long time in the tube? Yet it is the same day on Ceres.

See I told you guys Rhonda was some sort of political officer or some such.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: mellyrn on April 11, 2011, 05:59:36 am
I'm guessing it's not the same day.  I think we followed Reg & Babbette up to the oh-no-he-didn't-really-say-that moment, and then, in shifting back to Ceres, backed up in time to the beginning of this run-up.  I don't know how far, though.

Or maybe a "long" rejuv is merely several hours.

         
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: SandySandfort on April 11, 2011, 08:19:01 am
I'm guessing it's not the same day.  I think we followed Reg & Babbette up to the oh-no-he-didn't-really-say-that moment, and then, in shifting back to Ceres, backed up in time to the beginning of this run-up.  I don't know how far, though.

Or maybe a "long" rejuv is merely several hours.
         

Your first speculation is correct. Significant things happen on Ceres; significant things happen on Mars. The arcs started at about the same time; they will end at about the same time. However, their day-to-day timing is not necessarily simultaneous.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: spudit on April 11, 2011, 09:30:42 am
Thanks.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: spudit on April 14, 2011, 10:20:06 am
OK,
Chaing is the military boss/figurehead
Rhonda is the political boss/fanatic.
And the other two? Just fillers?
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: spudit on April 18, 2011, 10:35:39 am
Captain, now there is an interesting word.

Ed refuses to see it as a military rank because maybe that legitimizes the whole government army thing.  But I believe Reggie used it for the man running the ship. Was that a job title, like accountant Guy or Doctor Somebody, MD?
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Xavin on April 18, 2011, 10:50:00 am
Captain, now there is an interesting word.

Ed refuses to see it as a military rank because maybe that legitimizes the whole government army thing.  But I believe Reggie used it for the man running the ship. Was that a job title, like accountant Guy or Doctor Somebody, MD?

It seems likely to me that Reggie would be using it in the sense of a job title.

My understanding is that even current militaries (and for some centuries back) recognise the distinction between the rank and the job title - so that the commander of a military naval vessel is referred to as the "Captain" (i.e the job title) regardless of actual rank. And any military officer aboard with the actual rank of captain who isn't the vessel's commander receives a temporary "courtesy" promotion (so a naval captain would typically be addressed as "Commodore" while an army or marine captain would be called "Major") in order that there is only ever one person aboard who actually gets called "captain".

So, in theory, you could have a naval vessel commanded by a lieutenant commander (who gets called "captain"), with a marine company aboard commanded by a captain (who gets called "major"), and also transporting (as a passenger) a naval captain (who gets called "commodore")
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: spudit on April 18, 2011, 12:16:40 pm
As I understand it too.

A small ship boss may have the rank, payscale, insignia, of a commander or less but as the boss he is captain. As you may recall, I have given this boat stuff some thought.

In a few weeks I hope to be captain of a 28 footer at least in the eyes of my moody and mutinous beagle of a crew. And also legally in the eyes of the Coast Guard. If I break it I bought it.

Grown up time, big time.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: GlennWatson on April 18, 2011, 09:00:14 pm
I loved that last scene and the veiled threat from Black Mamba.  The professor seemed a little scared. 

But I am guessing the woman played her hand a bit to early.  She should never have given a warning that things were about to happen.  This is another example of incompetent Earth villainy. 

Of course villains explaining their evil plan just in time for the hero to thwart it is a typical comic book scenario. 
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: quadibloc on April 18, 2011, 10:10:09 pm
Ed refuses to see it as a military rank because maybe that legitimizes the whole government army thing.  But I believe Reggie used it for the man running the ship. Was that a job title,
I take it that he is objecting more to her manner than to her title.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: GlennWatson on April 18, 2011, 10:20:00 pm
Quote
My understanding is that even current militaries (and for some centuries back) recognise the distinction between the rank and the job title - so that the commander of a military naval vessel is referred to as the "Captain" (i.e the job title) regardless of actual rank. And any military officer aboard with the actual rank of captain who isn't the vessel's commander receives a temporary "courtesy" promotion (so a naval captain would typically be addressed as "Commodore" while an army or marine captain would be called "Major") in order that there is only ever one person aboard who actually gets called "captain".

Is any of that true?  I have never heard anything like that.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: SandySandfort on April 18, 2011, 11:44:43 pm
Ed refuses to see it as a military rank because maybe that legitimizes the whole government army thing.  But I believe Reggie used it for the man running the ship. Was that a job title,
I take it that he is objecting more to her manner than to her title.

Bingo.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: spudit on April 19, 2011, 12:18:13 am
Yeah Glenn, the captain is the boss, able to perform weddings or hang mutineers as needed. But basically he or she is held responsible for the ship, crew, all that. A navy captain is equal to an army colonel and runs a big ship. A full commander is equal to a Lt. colonel and runs a smaller ship and on downward. JFK was a mere lieutenant in charge of a dozen guys on that PT boat, but he was The Captain. 

Jerry Lewis did some silly flick where he was a very junior officer somehow considered Captain of a destroyer which came up missing. He was frantic because he had signed for it, unless found the ship was coming out of his pay. It turned up in a most remarkable place.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: quadibloc on April 19, 2011, 12:35:48 am
Is any of that true?  I have never heard anything like that.
Oh, yes. It's even made its way into some Star Trek episodes. Although I vaguely recall temporary demotions instead of promotions to avoid a second captain; maybe they just did it wrong to make it less confusing to a non-nautical audience.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: spudit on April 19, 2011, 12:47:33 am
There was one episode early in the Next Regurgitation when young Wesley Crusher is appalled when Picard treats the captain of a mining shuttle small enough to park on the hanger deck as captain, which on his little ship, he was. Remember it, they crash land in some desert?
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Aardvark on April 19, 2011, 12:50:47 am
It's as if Rhonda isn't aware that a few hundred cameras and microphones aren't recording everything that's been going on. Soon, I expect to see is a 12 year-old girl acquitting herself more maturely than Rhonda believes a 12 year-old girl can.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: spudit on April 19, 2011, 12:51:48 am
Is she her? Is Rhonda our long sought and never to be seen competent bad guy, girl, crazy broad? We shall see.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: dough560 on April 19, 2011, 04:00:26 am
Revealing statements seem to go with the territory.  When certain types think they are immune or protected, they tend to brag. I lost count of crooks I put in jail who just had to prove just how much smarter than me, they were.  Go figure.  One idiot had been discharged from the Army.  Believing himself safe from further prosecution by the Army and being deported by the Army and the German Government, he showed my partner and I his Swiss Bank Book where he had been stashing his drug money.  By the time he landed in New York, the IRS was waiting for him. 
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Xavin on April 19, 2011, 04:49:12 am
Quote
My understanding is that even current militaries (and for some centuries back) recognise the distinction between the rank and the job title - so that the commander of a military naval vessel is referred to as the "Captain" (i.e the job title) regardless of actual rank. And any military officer aboard with the actual rank of captain who isn't the vessel's commander receives a temporary "courtesy" promotion (so a naval captain would typically be addressed as "Commodore" while an army or marine captain would be called "Major") in order that there is only ever one person aboard who actually gets called "captain".

Is any of that true?  I have never heard anything like that.

The bit about anyone commanding a naval vessel being titled "Captain" I'm confident of (although in actual practice the address used may well normally be "Skipper").

The rest (the "courtesy promotions" bit) - well, thinking about it all my sources for that info appear to be fictional, and a brief Google search failed to turn up any offical sources to back it up. It's possible that, as a matter of tradition, it hasn't got much official documentation - but at least one discussion board I found indicates that it is NOT current practice in the US Navy; there is a suggestion that it may have been used pre-WW2 but the evidence offered is pretty weak (Heinlein mentions it in "Starship Troopers. Heinlein was an Annapolis graduate and may have been referring to then-current (or possibly historical) tradition).

Or I could be completely wrong and it's just one of those myths, like the one about ship's captains being able to perform marriages (that one is dubunked here: http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/546/are-ships-captains-allowed-to-marry-people-at-sea (http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/546/are-ships-captains-allowed-to-marry-people-at-sea))
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: SandySandfort on April 19, 2011, 09:36:34 am
The bit about anyone commanding a naval vessel being titled "Captain" I'm confident of (although in actual practice the address used may well normally be "Skipper").

I had a gringa staying with me for a few days. She had been stationed in Panama when she was in the Army. She was the captain of an Army boat and when aboard her superior officers in the Army were under her command. I don't recall if they had to call her Captain, but she reported definite resentment from the male officers for having to take orders from a lower ranking woman. So the practice under discussion, apparently extended to the Army as well as the Navy.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: GlennWatson on April 19, 2011, 05:18:23 pm
Yeah Glenn, the captain is the boss, able to perform weddings or hang mutineers as needed. But basically he or she is held responsible for the ship, crew, all that. A navy captain is equal to an army colonel and runs a big ship. A full commander is equal to a Lt. colonel and runs a smaller ship and on downward. JFK was a mere lieutenant in charge of a dozen guys on that PT boat, but he was The Captain. 

I understood all that.  I am talking about the temporary rank jumping.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 19, 2011, 05:36:36 pm
Is she her? Is Rhonda our long sought and never to be seen competent bad guy, girl, crazy broad? We shall see.

No. She'll be a half assed attempt at creating a competent bad guy but in the end will be undone by an equally half assed plan by some belter child.

Nay the author cannot write a David Xanatos to save his life.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: mellyrn on April 20, 2011, 09:44:56 am
инфы -- ?
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: quadibloc on April 20, 2011, 09:49:23 am
инфы -- ?
I got "Thank you very much, very little... in your forum" - and using Google Translate on the part I didn't recognize, I got "disk imaging found". Maybe "backup" in another sense was meant?

In any case, if the hostage is Babette Jr., the fact that her mother has just undergone rejuv, and is thus not recognizable, is presumably what is going to make the rollercoaster on Mars turn out to have been a crucial plot development on which the resolution of the current Cererean story arc depends.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: SandySandfort on April 20, 2011, 12:09:11 pm
if the hostage is Babette Jr., the fact that her mother has just undergone rejuv...

Little Babbette (now "Libby") is Babbette's granddaughter, not daughter. Libby's mother is Lili, the sex worker. Anyway, the girl in question is not Libby.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: GlennWatson on April 20, 2011, 04:29:06 pm
The girl in question is not Libby.

This is surprising.  When the girl was described as "cute and freckly," I immediately went to Libby. 

It will be interesting to see how the people of Ceres react to the assault on one of their young girls.  What is the human response?  Anger and a desire for revenge spring to mind.  The Professor was obviously angry.  It will be satisfying to see the Black Mamba and her men defeated.

I can't wait to see what happens next.

Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: dough560 on April 21, 2011, 03:24:46 am
Sandy has previously stated the UW's Uniform Code of Military Justice is descended from today's UCMJ.  If I'm remembering the Elements of Proof for correctly, Cpt. "Black Mamba" has admitted to Conspiracy, Assault, Kidnapping and possibly Aggravated Assault with the use of Chloroform.  The subordinates who assisted her are also guilty of those charges, plus obeying one or more illegal orders.  All of which the UW will forgive if her mission succeeds.

The idiots are dealing with a legal system they don't and have no interest in understanding.  Kate's gong to have some interesting choices to make.  Choices that will make the UW very unhappy.

Cpt Chang has some choices to make.  An officer, political commissioner or not, admitted to planning and committing several UCMJ Offenses in his presence.  Under today's regulations, he would have to apprehend her,  initiate an investigation to identify and apprehend her co-conspirators and secure the release of her victim.  Then insure the arrest / detention of the suspects until an appropriate convening authority could hold an article 31 hearing to assess evidence and determine charges.  Cpt Chang could not be the convening authority, since he is the primary witness and apprehending officer.  Hell of a way to end a career.

Additionally military regulations do not allow for military courts to try civilians for minor offenses such as a public disturbance or fighting.  Nor do military regulations protect service members from local laws, regulations or arbitration / court systems

Conducting a second kidnapping, will not establish UW law on Ceres.  Nor will it promote social unrest.

If her plan is to provoke a general assault on the troops, she's going to be disappointed.  Her actions seem to be desperate.  Someone who has not failed in the past, using any means to obtain an objective.  At this point, stupid and dangerous.

If she survives the experience,  arbitration.  One way or another, very expensive.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Aardvark on April 21, 2011, 04:32:33 am
Is Rhonda holding the girl hostage to force Ed or someone else to do what she wants? That's all I can think of. I can't figure out why she is unconcerned about the cameras. With Ed, Chang and Rhonda all together in the middle of the square, I'd think that more than one camera would be rolling, focused on them. If that's case, then Earth might be getting some interesting video rather soon.

The UW, as we know, is desperate. A political officer means that the UW is a serious, socialist, ideological state, which means they are capable of anything -- all for the good of the state, of course. I believe that we're about to see how Cerereans handle extortion. The next few strips should be quite interesting.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: quadibloc on April 21, 2011, 09:11:02 am
Cpt Chang has some choices to make.  An officer, political commissioner or not, admitted to planning and committing several UCMJ Offenses in his presence.  Under today's regulations, he would have to apprehend her,  initiate an investigation to identify and apprehend her co-conspirators and secure the release of her victim.
One can assume UW regulations regarding political officers are more similar to those of the former Soviet Union.

My solution to the situation would be:

a) a sniper shoots Rhonda dead, so she can no longer issue orders, and

b) then things are made easy for Chang, so that when he orders the release of the hostage, it will not look as if he is wilfully defying a policy of his late political officer, but instead reacting heroically in the interest of peace to a changed situation.

In other words, send a few big rocks flying in the direction of Earth. For all it matters, it could be a bluff.

However, that assumes that the UW can have its "pretext", but would discover that the Belters are so dangerous that if it tried a full-scale attack, it would achieve nothing but send a few of its own troops to their deaths. So I expect that something too clever for me to anticipate will happen instead.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: spudit on April 21, 2011, 09:51:14 am
Rhonda initiated force, had it done, against a kid. Under ZAP and by Belter custom she is where Harris was. Her minions are where the weapons officer was. Very fair game indeed.

What would be clever? Have her parents spring the kid over Rhonda's dead body? Having armed children spring her, volunteers of course? Have Libby do it somehow?
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: dough560 on April 22, 2011, 02:55:44 am
We have at least three teams in this mess.  Rhonda with her goon squad.  Cpt Chang and the regulars.  The various flavors and involvement of the belters.  All focusing on Kate. 

As satisfying as as putting a bullet in Rhonda might be, such an action might cause her subordinates to murder Kate. 

To release Kate, while keeping his men and himself alive, Cpt Chang will have to do some careful planning.  The goon squad will be watching for him.  How it will play out in the unit will depend on Cpt Chang's leadership and his Non-Commissioned Officers.

Rhonda has already proven she will continue with her "activities" until she is stopped.  While I would like to see her in arbitration after this is over, a bullet will insure she will not cause further problems.  It just has to be done in such a way, she does not become a martyr in the UW.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: GlennWatson on April 22, 2011, 07:43:04 am
Oh Mr. Sandfort.  You son of a gun.  This is the most frustrating cliffhanger yet.  Making us wait for two whole day to find out what will happen is the height of cruelty.  Now I hate AnCap even more than before.

Great story line!
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 22, 2011, 09:06:21 am
I'm surprised Chang simply can't refuse her orders or arrest her since she is violating UW law. This would mean that the UW must have emerged from the USA or some real shit hole of a country since there aren't regulations permitting that among their military.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: happycrow on April 22, 2011, 09:17:03 am
I'm surprised Chang simply can't refuse her orders or arrest her since she is violating UW law. This would mean that the UW must have emerged from the USA or some real shit hole of a country since there aren't regulations permitting that among their military.

They've intentionally embedded a raw-meat brigade that's perfectly comfortable gang-raping a 12-year-old and distributing her diced body parts all over public places.  Yeah, I'd say they've changed.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: GaTor on April 22, 2011, 10:22:25 am
Been awhile, but Rhonda's threat raised my hackles.  Anyway in  reviewing the comments on this thread several things come to mind.  Nothing in the UCMJ that I recall deals with jumping ranks aboard ship.  As with many things military, this is just an unwritten, but neccesary tradition.
 
@Xavin regarding the term "Skipper" , this too is an unwritten tradition.  However "Skipper" is an honorary title bestowed upon the beloved and respected Captain of a ship by the crew  or close associate.  It is NOT a universal title for a commanding officer and there are many ships captains who never earn this designation.
Hmmm interesting thought here:  Anyone recall an episode in which Kirk or Picard were referred to as "Skipper"?
Hmm There are many examples of these unwritten rules, one of the most outstanding would probably be the dichotomy in the military world of  "Dining In" and "Dining Out".   One is a rigidly formal, elegant and dignified affair.   The other, well it too is formal, is usually elegant but stretches the boundaries at times and while having the surface appearance of dignity is anything but.  The rules and traditions are unwritten vary wildy and are further confused by whether the attendees are Officers, NCOs, or a mixture of both... ummm even with a officer only affair the senior enlisted is usually present i.e. Command Sergeant Major.  Woe betide the junior Officer/NCO who steps outside the unwritten boundaries of these events, been known to end  careers.

Regarding Rhonda spilling her guts within the range of video and sound pickups, she no doubt has a personal scrambler which would make any recording of her conversation with Ed illegible.  This would be well within the bounds of the technology exhibited so far in EFT.

Rhonda could also be lying as to her threats, although having committed the physical act of kidnapping, whether or not the threats are real or just a bluff  is irrelevant.

One thing for sure, if it were my grand daughter, I'd have a hard time from going ballistic and heading for LEO.  Definitely be checking out the armory expecially Mr. Mossberg 12 ga.  And I'd put up my  S&W Model 19 .357 against that bitch's POS jammy  Mamba any day.

Great arc so far, dunno what Sandy's got planned but it is usually a suprise and will no doubt be elegant in execution. heheh. 
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: SandySandfort on April 22, 2011, 11:40:12 am
Oh Mr. Sandfort.  You son of a gun.  This is the most frustrating cliffhanger yet.  Making us wait for two whole day to find out what will happen is the height of cruelty.  Now I hate AnCap even more than before.

Great story line!

Thank you. Unfortunately, you will have to wait through the side-story about the Ceres Centipede, a walking, running and climbing "coaster" ride...   ;)
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: SandySandfort on April 22, 2011, 12:03:01 pm
They've intentionally embedded a raw-meat brigade that's perfectly comfortable gang-raping a 12-year-old and distributing her diced body parts all over public places.  Yeah, I'd say they've changed.

'Taint legal, McGee, would certainly cover this situation. Unfortunately, in many militaries, creatures like these are all too common. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that Rhonda's embedded crew were are all pommy bastards. The most vicious of which was a distant relative of the British murderer, Lieutenant Frederick Rothwell Holt.  ::)
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 22, 2011, 12:07:15 pm
They've intentionally embedded a raw-meat brigade that's perfectly comfortable gang-raping a 12-year-old and distributing her diced body parts all over public places.  Yeah, I'd say they've changed.

Well the US military is perfectly happy with doing that sort of thing now. So just add what would inevitably happen if they tried to adopt policies like those of a European social democracy and we have the UW. Well ain't that fun.

Also neat Sandy. I didn't know about him. I took this name from the Epic 40K PC game that was released a while back.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LOi3CzZjV0M
Now that is political officer done right.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Aardvark on April 22, 2011, 12:52:59 pm
Quote
Now that is political officer done right.

Impressive, but Commissar Rhonda is easier on the eyes and has a better sense of humor. ;)
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 22, 2011, 01:10:43 pm
Quote
Now that is political officer done right.

Impressive, but Commissar Rhonda is easier on the eyes and has a better sense of humor. ;)

Honestly the Imperium would be an anarchists greatest nightmare. An extremely oppressive theocratic tyranny, but its the good guy. The only reason it even exists is because there is no better option as all other options result in the death of our species. Tis a shame this aspect of it is rarely explored in the stories.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: mellyrn on April 22, 2011, 02:07:30 pm
Quote
Honestly the Imperium would be an anarchists greatest nightmare. An extremely oppressive theocratic tyranny, but its the good guy. The only reason it even exists is because there is no better option as all other options result in the death of our species. Tis a shame this aspect of it is rarely explored in the stories.

I can appreciate the concept of "[a]n extremely oppressive theocratic tyranny, but its the good guy."  But I wonder what is its mechanism for preventing the psychopaths from taking over?  The ones who are willing to do anything, such as having a child raped and butchered just to have a pretext for war, to get what they want?  How long can the Imperium stay "the good guy"?
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 22, 2011, 02:29:19 pm
I can appreciate the concept of "[a]n extremely oppressive theocratic tyranny, but its the good guy."  But I wonder what is its mechanism for preventing the psychopaths from taking over?  The ones who are willing to do anything, such as having a child raped and butchered just to have a pretext for war, to get what they want?  How long can the Imperium stay "the good guy"?

Oh the Imperium does far worse than that on a daily basis. Every day millions die so trillions may live. Every day thousands of children are kidnapped so that they may be trained, brainwashed and have extremely dangerous genetic modification and surgery performed on them so that in the event they survive they can become better fighters for the Imperium. Worlds are killed because a portion of its population knew things it shouldn't.
The Imperium is a monster. There's just no better option because every alien race is out to kill humanity and if left unchecked humanity will die by its own hand at the behest of extradimensional beings.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: quadibloc on April 22, 2011, 03:32:00 pm
Oh the Imperium does far worse than that on a daily basis. Every day millions die so trillions may live. Every day thousands of children are kidnapped so that they may be trained, brainwashed and have extremely dangerous genetic modification and surgery performed on them so that in the event they survive they can become better fighters for the Imperium. Worlds are killed because a portion of its population knew things it shouldn't.
The Imperium is a monster. There's just no better option because every alien race is out to kill humanity and if left unchecked humanity will die by its own hand at the behest of extradimensional beings.
It doesn't sound like an entertaining story to me. One hopes that reality isn't that bad, but in any case, that sort of thing seems quite the opposite of escapism.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 22, 2011, 03:53:46 pm
The Warhammer 40K setting is exactly that. A setting. There's hundreds of stories been published set there. But to put it simply the whole setting is best described by its tagline: "In the grim darkness of the 41st millennium there is only war"

In its own way it's actually a very good setting and has proven rather popular worldwide through the tabletop game it was made for which has branched into books, comics, video games (the Dawn of War series especially), roleplaying games and more.
It coined the term grimdark.

But in a scenario where everything is out to kill humanity? I highly doubt even an anarchist could say there is a future for us in anarchy.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: GaTor on April 23, 2011, 12:46:50 am


Well the US military is perfectly happy with doing that sort of thing now. So just add what would inevitably happen if they tried to adopt policies like those of a European social democracy and we have the UW. Well ain't that fun.


Oh really?  So how many military people do you personaly know that are perfectly happy with "that sort of thing"?  I'm a 20 year vet and I can count on one hand the military people I have known who would be complacent with that kind of crap.  Know what?  Based on your comment, I think you're a bigot.  You fall into that same type of mindset of the KKK who are comfortable with the use of word "nigger" and would have no problem if it's counterpart (babykiller/raper etc.)   were it to be applied to the men and women of the armed forces. 

Thing is, there are aberations and monsters in every segment of society.  Here's a little factoid, due to the rigid standards or the US armed forces there are far fewer incidences of crime per capita as compared to the civilian population.   

You don't agree?   Prove me wrong..but you can't.  Here's another truth. one of the main faults of our society is that people cannot or will not admit that they are wrong.  How about you?
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 23, 2011, 02:25:51 am
As an organisation the US military is perfectly fine with pretty much anything. After all we are talking about a nation which came up with the idea of selling highly addictive narcotics to its own populace in order to fund criminals in the South American continent.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: J Thomas on April 23, 2011, 11:16:08 am

Well the US military is perfectly happy with doing that sort of thing now. So just add what would inevitably happen if they tried to adopt policies like those of a European social democracy and we have the UW. Well ain't that fun.


Oh really?  So how many military people do you personaly know that are perfectly happy with "that sort of thing"?  I'm a 20 year vet and I can count on one hand the military people I have known who would be complacent with that kind of crap.

I agree. When our military people find themselves dealing on a day-to-day basis with something really horrible, they tend to get PTSD. They have lots of problems with it. They follow orders, they do what they have to do, and as much as possible they complete the mission. Then they freak out later.

The vast majority of our military people are normal decent people who might -- might -- get put into horrible situations that they know no adequate way to cope with.

I have known two Navy Seals who made a big deal about how macho they were. "No two skulls sound quite the same when they're hit with a nunchuk." And there are lots of public stories about SEALs being ruthless. Like, sent out to collect an enemy officer to interrogate, as they approach the beach each group that comes in carrying a prisoner after the first, breaks his neck and leaves him. "The orders were to collect one prisoner."

But their reputation is to be ruthless to carry out the mission, not to do gratuitous mayhem. Of course I haven't been with either of them on a mission, but my guess is that if they were supposed to cut a body into small pieces and scatter the pieces widely they'd have no trouble with it, but if they were ordered to gang-rape a 12-year-old it would be likely they would question their orders.

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Know what?  Based on your comment, I think you're a bigot.  You fall into that same type of mindset of the KKK who are comfortable with the use of word "nigger" and would have no problem if it's counterpart (babykiller/raper etc.)  were it to be applied to the men and women of the armed forces.

There's a lot of that going around these days. Partly, it's that the military is becoming more and more a closed culture. Professionals who have their own customs and traditions separate from the civilians they come from. And also we preferentially recruit from the south and midwest, from areas that are "politically conservative". So the whole thing becomes increasingly foreign to people who are less conservative. I'm not sure what can be done about all that in the short run.

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Thing is, there are aberations and monsters in every segment of society.  Here's a little factoid, due to the rigid standards or the US armed forces there are far fewer incidences of crime per capita as compared to the civilian population.

That's hard to measure. Civilian police forces have a pattern -- they report increasing crime statistics until they get a funding increase. Then crime statistics take a sudden drop, and rise gradually until the next funding increase. The obvious interpretation is that they report a crime wave to get funding, and then report less crime to show the funding worked. But there are other possibilities too, like better-paid police might be more industrious at catching criminals and getting them out of circulation, or alternatively better-paid police might be less diligent at turning in crime reports. None of this applies to the military, which gets no benefit at all from reporting crimes beyond their duty to report them. The military has a big reputation for handling discipline their own way, preferably without making reports to their own higher authorities or anyone else. Not to say they do less punishment, but they don't keep accurate statistics.

I have what I consider strong evidence that military crimes are consistently underreported. I also have weaker evidence that for one particular crime, the incidence is probably about the same as for the general population. I'll discuss that if you want.

But let's suppose that it's true there is far less crime in the military. Is that reasonable? There is considerably more reported crime among civilians when the economy is going badly and there is high unemployment. One possible interpretation is that police forces want to justify spending so they report more crimes. But there's a theory that lots of poor people prefer honest work but commit crimes when they cannot find jobs, or when they are generally more desperate. To the extent this is true, military people who have guaranteed employment until time for re-enlistment, and who have guaranteed food and shelter, and who have considerable to lose if they get caught, would be less likely to risk it.

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You don't agree?   Prove me wrong..but you can't.

If we agree that the military has such great reporting standards that they never tell a lie to the public, then we should depend on the military's statistics to decide such things. However, the military has been caught in so many many lies to the public that we cannot do that. It could be argued that for some things the military has the duty to lie to the public. It's their responsibility to win wars, and any information that hurts the war effort should be censored. But also, each individual and each individual unit tries to look good so they won't make the military look bad. If they look bad to the public, they will also look bad to their superiors who will then commit more thorough inspections and damage careers etc.

I find all this completely understandable and not particularly dastardly. But it leaves me with no solid basis to answer the questions you ask. There's reason to think the military is not as shiny as they look. But how bad are they? I have no way to know.

Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: mellyrn on April 24, 2011, 09:42:46 am
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But in a scenario where everything is out to kill humanity? I highly doubt even an anarchist could say there is a future for us in anarchy.

Ah, well, I won't be there.  If survival means I must daily do things and endure things that revolt and disgust me, then the game's not worth the candle.  A life I can't enjoy? enjoy being human and humane and all that?  Why bother?  Existence just for its own sake ain't for me.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 24, 2011, 09:44:45 am
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But in a scenario where everything is out to kill humanity? I highly doubt even an anarchist could say there is a future for us in anarchy.

Ah, well, I won't be there.  If survival means I must daily do things and endure things that revolt and disgust me, then the game's not worth the candle.  A life I can't enjoy? enjoy being human and humane and all that?  Why bother?  Existence just for its own sake ain't for me.

Therein lies the problem with anarchy and anarchists. They are self centered.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: GlennWatson on April 24, 2011, 12:42:05 pm
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But in a scenario where everything is out to kill humanity? I highly doubt even an anarchist could say there is a future for us in anarchy.

Ah, well, I won't be there.  If survival means I must daily do things and endure things that revolt and disgust me, then the game's not worth the candle.  A life I can't enjoy? enjoy being human and humane and all that?  Why bother?  Existence just for its own sake ain't for me.

Have children.  It changes things.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: mellyrn on April 24, 2011, 01:41:23 pm
I have 3 children and 2 grandchildren.  Had I been a young woman in Holt's Imperium, I would not have subjected any new being (aka my children) to such a world.  That's terribly self-centered of me, I know, wanting to spare people I don't even know from dismay I wouldn't personally be willing to endure.  Holt, you made it clear that in that world the only two alternatives are endless suffering, and nonexistence.  Why anyone would choose a suffering existence is beyond me, but I'm not going to force them to choose nonexistence (i.e., I'm not going to kill them "for their own good").  Well, not unless they try to force me to choose suffering.

In this real world, otoh, I found (and find) enough of delight and beauty that I thought I'd share.

Those of you who think existence, any existence, no matter how wretched, debased or miserable and with no hope of change, is worth doing, go right ahead.  I ain't stopping you.  Me, I need something to live for.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 24, 2011, 02:07:15 pm
It's not over until you give up.

You just prefer to give up.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Aardvark on April 24, 2011, 05:36:14 pm
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Holt: It's not over until you give up.

Except that, for all practical purposes, you've already given up, haven't you? You deride natural rights and honor, and advocate that might is right. You rationalize, duck arguments, and change the meanings of words to suit, all the while likely grinning and patting yourself on the back for being clever like some Russell Brand wannabe.

In my opinion, you have the psychology of a whimpering slave or an uncaring slave master. I can imagine you in ancient Rome. You'd spend your peculium on prostitutes and wine instead of saving it to buy your freedom, then, as you were being whipped for being drunk and lazy, you'd moan that it was all so unfair. :)
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 24, 2011, 07:03:23 pm
Nah I'd be more likely to use it to buy something with which to poison my master.

Or burn down his home with him tied up inside it.

Or some other incredibly bastardy thing to do. Mind you if I was around in that time I'd be a celt which means I'd either be in the legion, killing the legion or in the Colosseum.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: dough560 on April 24, 2011, 07:13:29 pm
GaTor, Holt has his preconceptions concerning the military, preconceptions no one has been able to change.  I was long term service as an MP and regularly compiled crime statistics and interacted with civilian counterparts.   I'd love to examine his alleged sources and data.  His stated results are not what I'm familiar with.  I'm sure the same is true for you.

We both know what would happen to any Officer or NCO advocating Rhonda's actions, or what would happen to them if they did happen and were not reported.  Granted there are those who believe anything goes, but thankfully today's military does a pretty good job of weeding them out.  I can think of a half dozen I've personally forced out of service or introduced to Fort Leavenworth.

Holt, a few operate only from self interest.  The majority of us operate from implied self interest.  Each and every day.  Accordingly, things work out.  The wheels come off when those who only care about themselves and their accumulated power are in charge.  Quite a few of us look forward to the day such people will not be able to control our lives, for we will have grown as a society to a point the power mongers will be ignored or if they threaten others, eliminated.  Such individuals have strong survival characteristics.

mellyrn, I'm 55 with two daughters 8 and 10.  With the crap I have seen and delt with during my life, I'm determined they have the skills they need to survive just about anything.  Life is worth living.  It's my job to instill in them the skills and strength of character to do what's right, not what's politically correct or expedient.  I'm sure that's what you did with your kids and are trying to help them do the same as they raise their kids.  With today's schools I'm aware just how hard that is.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Aardvark on April 24, 2011, 07:50:05 pm
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Holt: Nah I'd be more likely to use it to buy something with which to poison my master.

Or burn down his home with him tied up inside it.

I don't think you know much about ancient Rome, which is fine, of course, not many people do. The practice back then was to kill all the slaves a master owned if he died suspiciously. You'd condemn yourself and all the other slaves to death. Even if you managed to escape, there would be nowhere for you to go in Rome. Everyone knew everyone's place by their names. Rome was an intricate system of families, clans, clients and patrons. A no-name person, or one with a false name would have been found out very quickly and would never have been given a job. You'd starve or have to keep on the move and steal for a living.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 24, 2011, 08:06:13 pm
Well I'd be a celt like I mentioned. So I'd probably head home. Stealing is perfectly fine too.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Aardvark on April 24, 2011, 08:53:07 pm
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Holt: Well I'd be a celt like I mentioned. So I'd probably head home. Stealing is perfectly fine too.

Nah, you'd never have left. You don't long for freedom, you long for the easy way, which isn't the same thing. You disparage individual rights. You wallow in nihilism. Your defeatist psychology is perfect for a slave. Master would beat you and you'd behave because "might is right." After a while, you'd develop the common slave philosophy of the day. You'd dedicate your life to your master, sneering at "bad slaves," and calling other slaves "boy" and "girl." Quite a few slaves were ambitious and made deals with their masters: they'd work their tails off and make them money in return for their eventual freedom. Alas, for that, one would have to embrace capitalism, which you disdain. :)
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 24, 2011, 09:02:01 pm
I disdain everything if you'd bothered to pay attention. In a way I guess that makes me more of an anarchist than you'll ever be. Hwat a hilarious thought
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Aardvark on April 24, 2011, 09:48:49 pm
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Commissar Holt: In a way I guess that makes me more of an anarchist than you'll ever be.

I guess so, but I don't claim to be an anarchist. Personally, I'm a bit dubious that Ceres could work, but I like the story and am willing to see how Sandy makes his case for AnCap.
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: mellyrn on April 25, 2011, 12:44:21 pm
"The more liberty we lose, the less people are able to imagine how liberty might work." -- Lew Rockwell (http://tinyurl.com/65plz2t)
Title: Re: Back on Ceres again
Post by: Holt on April 25, 2011, 04:12:55 pm
"The more liberty we lose, the less people are able to imagine how liberty might work." -- Lew Rockwell (http://tinyurl.com/65plz2t)

American political ideologist.
Ergo his opinion is worthless. I have shat things out worth more than his opinion.