Wednesday, 23 August 2017

The Weaponisation of History

Jonathon Davies, Going Postal

I was lucky enough to have a couple of excellent teachers and lecturers for History during school and University. They emphasised two important points on why History was so important. First, that history is written by the victors. Second, whoever controls the past, controls the future.

History is also the search for the truth. As one of my University professors said, “History is a bullshit detector.” Sources are analysed rigorously, published papers peer reviewed. It was constantly questioned, and re-evaluated in light of new discoveries. Or it used to be.

First, history is written by the victors. What is the major source for the battle of Hastings and the Norman conquest? The Bayeux Tapestry. Produced by the Normans. If you win, you get to put forward your version of history. This is usually then the accepted version. Even when it is later challenged by historians, it is hard to remove the perception from the public consciousness.


The Internet is Simple, Part Two

El Cnutador, Going Postal

Routers keep this mapping in a list for future lookup. The chain keeps on going, with each step out to the wider network adding enough information so the network knows how to handle your packet at each step. Packets hop between routers from the originating machine until they get to where they should be going, or otherwise you get an error returned to you. If a router does not know of the target IP address of where the packet should be sent, it take a look at the target IP address and see if it is an address it should know about. If it is, then it will try to connect to the machine and forward the packet. If it isn’t, then the packet will be forwarded to another router higher up in the hierarchy to deal with.

All internet computers will have an IP address, and this is what is used to pass the packets of data around. But wait, no one is typing dotted quads in to surf the net though, right? Because we are rubbish at remembering numbers, there’s an aliasing system in place – that links a friendly name to the IP address. This service is offered by Domain Name Servers or DNS for short. These are machines on the internet that can turn easy to remember human names into actual IP addresses.


Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Puss in Boots

Bobo, Going Postal
To Southwark Fair, very dirty, and there saw the puppet show of Whittington, which was pretty to see” – Samuel Pepys.

In the fourteenth century the toll required of a prostitute who wished to cross the bridge at the French town of Montlucon was four pence, ‘aut unum bumbum’.

J.G. Bourke, amongst whose writings we find this picaresque example of an alternative method of payment, clearly wishes us to pronounce the final word as rhyming with ‘tumtum’ and hence invest it with a quite specific meaning: ‘one up the Gary Glitter’ as I believe the modern colloquialism to be. Bourke and I agree pretty well on most things but here I reckon the old boy fell into error, and that error I believe to be threefold.


Monday, 21 August 2017

The Conservatives are Committing Suicide

John Booth, Going Postal
The banality of evil, and they are evil

The Conservatives are Committing Suicide If it wasn't obvious before, today we know that the UK Conservative Government have declared war on their own citizens by curbing our right to freedom of speech. The police and the CPS have agreed the following definition for identifying and flagging hate crimes and announced this today:

An Old-fashioned Nurse

Jethro, Going Postal
On the same day that a national newspaper carried the notice of my wife’s death, the front page had a headline to the effect that ‘Midwife Mistakes’ were responsible for many infant deaths and disabilities; now, two months later -to the day- a national paper returns to the same topic, but concentrating on the brain-damage aspect. She could have forewarned both the R.C.N. and Westminster of exactly this probable outcome, not least when Midwifery training was stripped of its requirement to be preceded by General training. She had, herself, been a Midwife, having first trained in General Nursing, and once having achieved ‘State Registered Nurse’ status (a relative had got her into The Royal Masonic Hospital), she went on to ‘U.C.H.’ to train as a Midwife. Training at both places was demanding (R.M.H. Matron: “You go to the lavatory, Nurse, in your own time, not when on duty!”) with lectures having to be attended when dropping with sleep after a full shift on the Wards. Nurses, then, had to do all those menial tasks now considered far beneath the dignity of ‘Nurse-Practioners’ with Degrees: vomit wiped up, bed-pans or bottles brought as soon as a patient’s bell rang, beds made impeccably, two when drugs were given so that someone else could check the dosage – and, indeed, the drug - was right...dead patients laid out (in, of course, respectful silence), dying babies given emergency Baptism... To have a patient have a bed-sore meant a carpeting in front of Sister – if not Matron - ,as it was a sign of neglect of a Nurse’s duties, and, besides, ‘prevention is much better than cure’.

Postcard from Yekaterinburg

DavidMurphy57, Going Postal

Sunday, 20 August 2017

Victoriana 6

Tachybaptus, Going Postal

Chapter 6

The accident had only just happened. The steamer was nose down in the hole and one rear wheel was still turning lazily. There was a descending whine as its turbine ran down. A cloud of dust hung over the scene.

History - we don’t need no stinking history

Colliemum, Going Postal

A wise man (sorry: cis-ultra-far-right-old-white-privileged, non-gender-fluid dead man) once said that those who do not learn from History are condemned to repeat it. History is to do with memory, a nation’s collective memory.
We’ve all remarked again and again that Generation Snowflake and their slightly older siblings, now firmly occupying the meejah, have a memory which doesn’t go further back than last Tuesday.
The shitstorm in the international MSM about Charlottesville and what Trump said or should’ve said is there for all to see. What is not there for all to see are two phenomena: