Sunday, February 10, 2019

Government Assistance Programs

 The economics of why Government's manage to go over budget

The government identifies a problem.

The government decides it needs to create an assistance program.

The government allocates $x to finance this assistance program.

A bureaucracy is employed to manage and run this assistance program.

The bureaucracy manages to absorb most of the $$ available for the assistance program in salaries, wages, consultants fees, expenses.

How much $$ is left for actual assistance to public?

The government allocates increased funding to support assistance program.

Bureaucrats increase number of staff employed to implement program.

Extra funding is again absorbed by...operational expenses...etc etc etc.

Part 2
When the government decides that privatizing this program will become more efficient.

Private enterprises put in tenders for contract with government

Either lowest tender wins bid or

Collusion amongst bidders sets floor for bidding  or

Government bureaucrats are influenced by under the table incentives to favor tenders or

Politicians with conflicting interests influence tender selection process

Whoever wins contract is motivated by profit incentive.

Profit incentive is directly in conflict with need to provide assistance to public because it reduces profits.

Part 3 
 Government decides to nationalize private enterprise mentioned in Part 2

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Internet Scams

I've received faked invoices by email. Never click on the link in the email message.

I've received received fake notices that if I don't pay now my service will be disconnected.

The most recent scam is when I connected to Google Hangouts.
I immediately received a message from what looked like a young woman.
Further conversations led to her showing an unbelievable interest in me. Now I'm not that stupid to fall for that. So I played along waiting for the hit.
What came next was obvious, video sex online for money.
The skill with which the perpetrator attempted to manipulate me was very good.
I've seen other scams like this which have been too crude and blunt to be taken seriously, especially one that stole the ID of somebody and pretended to be that person.
What was apparent in the sex for money scam was how each confrontation by myself was followed by a long pause, versus normal conversation. I suspect the scammer was getting instructions on how to respond from a third party.

So here is Luise Garnier. This is the name she used. She is very charming and very believable. But ultimately her motive was to get money from me in exchange for online sex.

Let this be a warning to everybody.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Is Human Behaviour an Algorithm?

I've often wondered about patterns of behavior.
I observe my cats for example, different generations behave remarkably similarly. In fact, it's an amusing pastime for cat owners to reflect on how common certain cat behaviour can be. Is cat behaviour merely an inherited algorithm?

And then consider AI and the possibility that at some point in the future, androids will be programmed with an algorithm that lets them mimic human behaviour.
Hiroshi Ishiguro builds androids and explores the possibilities of human attachment to androids.

I put this idea on it's head and think, what if humans are programmed to behave in a certain way, in fact, by an algorithm?
If an algorithm can predict human behaviour, doesn't that suggest that humans are just a result of a very complex algorithm?

Monday, November 06, 2017

Sutherland Springs Texas Tragedy

Every time I hear of another lone gunman shooting people at random, as in the latest fatality at San Antonio Texas, I wonder to myself, where were all the gun toting civilians? Texas doesn't have any gun registration laws. I bet there are lots of Texans just walking around with guns in holsters hanging off their hips.

Maybe these gun toting Texans are holding secret fantasies of a shootout like the famous O.K. Corral...

Maybe these gun toting people are feeling safer carrying a gun than if they weren't armed...

I have no quarrel with the American constitution or American's right to bear arms.

What I'd like to know is, where the fuck are you all every time a crazy lone gunman goes berserk?