Pentagon’s ‘Anomaly Resolution’ Department Studying UFOs

The Pentagon announced it’s opening an office specifically to chase down reports of unidentified flying objects in a press release on Wednesday. It’ll be called the All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO) and will work to collect and analyze various reports of UFO activity from across America’s various federal agencies…

The new office is the result of various disclosures of unidentified aerial phenomenon (UAP) by the DoD after lobbying and leaks from groups like Tom Delonge’s To the Stars Academy. Credible witnesses, including Navy pilots, have come forward and described their experiences with UFOs. One recent Navy video leaked by a UFO enthusiast and confirmed by the Pentagon showed a UFO apparently disappearing into the water, which may explain the new office’s focus on “transmedium” objects—objects that flit between space, the air, and under the water.

Same as it ever was. We’ll get a peek at what the boffins have been peering at for years. And still haven’t figured out.

GOUSA spent billions on buildings, infrastructure in Afghanistan…now it’s called “ZOMBIELAND”


Stars and Stripes

The United States spent more than $2 billion since 2008 on buildings and vehicles in Afghanistan that are now either in disrepair, not being used as intended or completely unusable, according to a recent review by a government oversight group

“Of the nearly $7.8 billion in capital assets reviewed in its prior reports, Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction…SIGAR identified about $2.4 billion in assets that were unused or abandoned, had not been used for their intended purposes, had deteriorated, or were destroyed,” the report said…

I doubt there is any branch of the United States government that can waste more money than our military. There probably is a secret department in the Pentagon set aside just for the creation of excuses for mismanagement and cost overruns.

Pentagon used taxpayer dollar$ meant for masks and swabs to buy military hardware


Trump and his latest Pentagon errand boy

A $1 billion fund Congress gave the Pentagon in March to build up the country’s supplies of medical equipment has instead been mostly funneled to defense contractors and used to make things such as jet engine parts, body armor and dress uniforms.

The change illustrates how one taxpayer-backed effort to battle the novel coronavirus, which has killed more than 200,000 Americans, was instead diverted toward patching up long-standing perceived gaps in military supplies…

The payments were made even though U.S. health officials think major funding gaps in pandemic response still remain. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said in Senate testimony last week that states desperately need $6 billion to distribute vaccines to Americans early next year. Many U.S. hospitals still face a severe shortage of N95 masks. These are the types of problems that the money was originally intended to address.

Did you expect the Independent Duchy of Pentagonia to become responsive to democracy and the needs of the whole nation…just because our sleazy, outdated electoral college put a thug from Wall Street in charge of the national treasury?

Add a gun that can’t shoot straight to Lockheed Martin’s F-35 track record

Add a gun that can’t shoot straight to the problems that dog Lockheed Martin Corp.’s $428 billion F-35 program, including more than 800 software flaws.

The 25mm gun on Air Force models of the Joint Strike Fighter has “unacceptable” accuracy in hitting ground targets and is mounted in housing that’s cracking, the Pentagon’s test office said in its latest assessment of the costliest U.S. weapons system.

The annual assessment by Robert Behler, the Defense Department’s director of operational test and evaluation, doesn’t disclose any major new failings in the plane’s flying capabilities. But it flags a long list of issues that his office said should be resolved — including 13 described as Category 1 “must-fix” items that affect safety or combat capability…

The number of software deficiencies totaled 873 as of November…That’s down from 917 in September 2018, when the jet entered the intense combat testing required before full production, including 15 Category 1 items. What was to be a year of testing has now been extended another year until at least October.

But, don’t worry. Uncle Sugar seems to be keeping up with the printing of tax dollars they ship by the bale to Lockheed Martin.

Buy Bonds – and K Rations


Click to enlarge

The K-ration was an individual daily combat food ration which was introduced by the United States Army during World War II. It provided three separately boxed meal units: breakfast, dinner (lunch) and supper (dinner).

More than most American homeless might count on, nowadays.

When Did Silicon Valley Become Brotopia?

❝ In engineering circles, some refer to Lena as “the first lady of the internet.” Others see her as the industry’s original sin, the first step in Silicon Valley’s exclusion of women. Both views stem from an event that took place in 1973 at a University of Southern California computer lab, where a team of researchers was trying to turn physical photographs into digital bits. Their work would serve as a precursor to the JPEG, a widely used compression standard that allows large image files to be efficiently transferred between devices. The USC team needed to test their algorithms on suitable photos, and their search for the ideal test photo led them to Lena.

❝ According to William Pratt, the lab’s co-founder, the group chose Lena’s portrait from a copy of Playboy that a student had brought into the lab. Pratt, now 80, tells me he saw nothing out of the ordinary about having a soft porn magazine in a university computer lab in 1973. “I said, ‘There are some pretty nice-looking pictures in there,’ ” he says. “And the grad students picked the one that was in the centerfold.” Lena’s spread, which featured the model wearing boots, a boa, a feathered hat, and nothing else, was attractive from a technical perspective because the photo included, according to Pratt, “lots of high-frequency detail that is difficult to code.”…To this day, some engineers joke that if you want your image compression algorithm to make the grade, it had better perform well on Lena…

❝ “When you use a picture like that for so long, it’s not a person anymore; it’s just pixels,” Jeff Seideman told the Atlantic in 2016, unwittingly highlighting the sexism that Needell and other critics had tried to point out.

“We didn’t even think about those things at all when we were doing this,” Pratt says. “It was not sexist.” After all, he continues, no one could have been offended because there were no women in the classroom at the time. And thus began a half-century’s worth of buck-passing in which powerful men in the tech industry defended or ignored the exclusion of women on the grounds that they were already excluded.

Uh-huh…RTFA, please.

U.S. Military Marches Toward Energy Independence


Hill AFBOfficial White House Photo by Lawrence Jackson

The U.S. is at a transformative moment in electricity. And the military is helping us move toward a new era of independence.

❝ The U.S. electrical grid was ranked by the National Academy of Engineering as the greatest achievement of the 20th century, and it was this vast infrastructure that helped to power our economy, enhance our communities and light up our lives. But the centralized power grid is not perfect, and it faces an array of risks from natural disasters to human and cyber attacks.

As electricity becomes more and more critical in our lives, wide-ranging blackouts won’t just be a personal annoyance — they could cripple our economy. A diversified energy portfolio that includes renewable generation creates a more resilient grid. A recent draft of a report from the Department of Energy also concluded that wind and solar energy create a more reliable grid.

❝ The added security provided by renewables is why everyone — from the military to Fortune 100 companies — is finding ways to use clean reliable distributed power systems to support their operations.

RTFA to learn how this understanding makes sense. Moving forward.

U.S. Government is run with museum-piece hardware and software — matching Congressional ideology

The government is squandering its technology budget maintaining museum-ready computer systems in critical areas from nuclear weapons to Social Security. They’re still using floppy disks at the Pentagon.

In a report released Wednesday, nonpartisan congressional investigators found that about three-fourths of the $80 billion budget goes to keep aging technology running, and the increasing cost is shortchanging modernization.

The White House has been pushing to replace workhorse systems that date back more than 50 years in some cases. But the government is expected to spend $7 billion less on modernization in 2017 than in 2010, said the Government Accountability Office…

Although lawmakers of both parties say they are frustrated, it’s unclear whether Congress will act. Part of the problem is finding money to invest in a transition to new systems at agencies across the government.

Part of the solution is removing Know Nothing-Conservatives from Congress.

Among the vintage computing platforms highlighted in the report:

— The Defense Department’s Strategic Automated Command and Control System, which is used to send and receive emergency action messages to U.S. nuclear forces. The system is running on a 1970s IBM computing platform, and still uses 8-inch floppy disks to store data. “Replacement parts for the system are difficult to find because they are now obsolete,” GAO said. The Pentagon told GAO it is initiating a full replacement and the floppy disks should be gone by the end of next year. The entire upgrade will take longer.

— Treasury’s individual and business master files, the authoritative data sources for taxpayer information. The systems are about 56 years old and use an outdated computer language that is difficult to write and maintain. Treasury plans to replace the systems but has no firm dates.

It goes on and on from there. RTFA. Contact your Congress-critter. Ask ’em if they’ve gotten off their rusty dusty to modernize government technology. No papier-mâché excuses accepted.