Monday, January 25, 2010

Sniff This

People with half a brain have known for ages that the ADE651 "bomb detector" is perfect example of the Barnum Principle of defense spending - there's an idiot born every minute, and he's probably working as a supply person for some Armed Forces unit somewhere in the world.

FINALLY, it has been exposed for the con it is.

It's a piece of pure whiffle. It's an unglorified divining rod. It's a wank. It's a disaster capitalist's ideal opportunity: playing on the fear, ignorance and desperation of a purchaser, he can sell whatever he wants. It's open slather for some 'clever' developer/opportunsit (aka a thieving murderous cunt) like Jim McCormick (no relation to the mustard people, or me, thank Christ) to see a chance to fill a niche in the bomb/drug/fart detection industry with his pseudo-scientific con job.

The things beeps every now and then. It "works" on the same principle as a divining rod, the inventor says. Except that divining rods don't, um, work. The chip inside the machine does nothing, can do nothing according to the BBC report.

Built for about $0.30 in second-hand (or more) parts from trashed Vauxhall Victors, this device enables the purchaser to do whatever they think they would like to do with a device that does whatever they want it to do, at a bargain basement discount price of, get this, $60,000 per unit.

Rest assured that the developer of this unit has been working his mother-in-law's arse to an axe-handle width, getting her to make a few more units down in the garden shed in their dairy in Somerset (I kid you not) to continue to supply the Iraqi army (and others!) with the spare parts and back-up service they deserve for having made this canny purchase.

As it is a completely a functionless, useless piece of black-box un-technology, people's lives have been put at risk hundreds of times as serious-faced security guards have wafted it over bags, or even just pointed in the direction of whatever it is they think it can detect (whatever you "train" it to detect) over several yards, or - hey, why not? - miles.

Sometimes when I drive through checkpoints, the device moves simply because I have medications in my handbag. Sometimes it doesn't - even when I have the same handbag
Umm Muhammad, retired Iraqi schoolteacher

I wonder how many people innocent have died because this bum-fuck piece of evidence of humanity's stupidity has been used in checkpoints in Iraq?

How stupid ARE people?

How stupid ARE people in the armed forces?

How at risk are we, the general public (those of us in Iraq anyway), when people we are meant to trust fall for this sort of out and out quackery?

Who TESTS the claims of these machines before the Armed Forces buys them? No-one, no time to check, we at war with, um, terror! What about being at war with the sleazy criminals who are bleeding the armed forces of the world dry (and the people who pay the taxes which pay for it all) with their lies and half-arsed... arse. I am sorry, I am almost speechless at the criminal negligence of the people who failed to prevent this...

If more people actually knew some science, had just a tad of skepticism about these snake-oil salesmen offering them deals that are obviously too good to be true (true for the salesman's bottom line of course), then this sort of tragedy wouldn't become the farce which is playing out at the moment.


Question: Why?

Answer: people who have been conditioned to believe such stupid things as there being some Big Brother in the sky who watches over them and has done for everyone else since the dawn of time - oops no, sorry, only since some Middle East Camel trader cut off his foreskin 7,000 years ago - 24/7, and who takes a very serious view of whether you call him/her alah or allen or god or baal and who will help you find your car keys but has no time to stop soldiers or rebels, in whatever war you care to name, from raping children and women or hacking or machine-gunning them to death - those sort of people will believe in anything. Obviously.

They'd even buy the ADE657.



dibabear said...

Blaming the belief in God/Allah/whatever is pretty rich considering other posts you've made. The blame should be on unbridled greed enabled by untold amounts of money being sucked into the space-like vacuum that is Iraq. That greed, much like the investment banking debacle, is due to lots of people just not giving a shit so long as they get their share.

You don't need a god to have morals but it helps. Unless that god is money, of course, in which case "the greater good" is simply "the greater greed".

dibabear said...

And what I mean by the above is simply to follow the money. It wouldn't surprise me in the least that some muckity-muck (like that Iraqi MG) is getting a kickback on each unit the Iraqis bought.

I also don't blame the police on the street, ignorance is bliss. How much formal education do you think those guys have? If it were solely that being raised in a country where belief in a god was ubiquitous you and I would be as ignorant as they are. Are we?

expat@large said...

DiB: I am just in an anti-religious mood at the moment, for personal reasons. I was referring to what I see in the gullibilty and lack of logic that I see in this puchase as well as in religious beleif and other superstitions. I didn't mean to imply that this was a religious decision, far from it. Sorry if it came across that way.

Reading back over the past 5 years, I don't see ANY positive references to religion, so I am not sure what you are referring to there! Unless you think that charity is an exclusive religious trait! In fact its the opposite - the world's largest philanthropists have all been non-believers.

But oh YES! Follow The Money! (Even those philanthropist's money!) I have a great book open at the moment: A Game As Old As Empire, which does a terrific job of detailing how the big money in the world cirulates from the rich elite back to the rich elite, while throwing the poor countries in the world into massive debt in the iddle of the cycle with the same money!

You'd like it I'm sure. John Perkins (Confessions of an Economic Hitman) writes the introduction.

Lost in Melbourne said...

It seems almost comedy to me that ANYONE would knowingly spend ANY money in payment for this type of obvious scam product. Imagine being forced to wonder around the place pretending that you actually believed that this piece of crap was actually detecting the presence of explosives. If it wasn't true we would write a sketch about it and bed the monty python guys to reform and do a stage performance of it for the International Comedy Festival...

Lost in Melbourne said...

sorry that should read beg them not bed them...

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