Whoa, whoa, whoa!

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Ok one has to look at this Santa killing as a portent, not just of potential futures, but of more effective delivery methods.

You see, Santa fucked up.  He killed himself, instead of heading off to Canada as was his plan (not like they'd have let a single man with cash strapped to him in, anyway--they gave me a serious going-over when I was up there for vacation/exploration in 2006).

If his plan had worked, however (the point of this post), it would have been devastating.  His plan for destruction followed my projection back in 2001, when all this nutty paranoid thought pattern stuff fruited (after it budded with Waco).  If you recall, I pointed out that I could cause perfectly appropriate destruction with simple items purchased at the grocery/hardware store, if I wanted to, and one can't have a highly technological culture w/o having a set of individuals educated well enough to be able to accomplish this destruction, should they wish.

In this case, the implement of destruction was apparently a 'FAX' (fuel-air explosive device).

Now, I don't know if you are familiar with fuel/air explosive devices, but (when they go off as planned) they are INCREDIBLY destructive.  In short, the theory is that you set up the kind of circumstance that makes houses blow up when they fill with gas and someone lights a match.  You seep the gas into the atmosphere until it's saturated, then you ignite it.

In the case of natural gas, which is a bit heavier than air, and after all, a gas, there's a somewhat lesser saturation capacity.  If, on the other hand, one was to aerosolize a liquid so that the atmosphere was a SUPER-saturated circumstance (more fuel than CAN be absorbed, and extra to boot), THEN, when you ignite it, you can (in certain circumstances) get an effect similar to an air-burst thermonuclear weapon.

From the Wiki:

In September 2007 Russia successfully exploded the largest vacuum bomb ever made, leveling a multi-story block of apartment buildings with a power greater than that of the smallest dial-a-yield nuclear weapons at their lowest settings.[22][23] 

Now, the guy had the right material (racing fuel).  He had a vaporization device, and he was killing people left and right while he set up the device.

He didn't count for the Xmas candles.  They pre-ignited the device.  If this had been, for example, Valentines' Day, the results might have been different.

If he had been successful in setting the device up and detonating it, they would be gathering the 'dental records' from potentially as far away as Los Angeles.  There would have been a significantly higher death-toll, too.  I can't really project the actual destruction radius, but I'm guessing it would have been significantly larger than just the size of the house that simply burned down.

If he'd merely used a stun-gun/tranquilizer to incapacitate the people inside, set the can up on the air inlet for the AC system, the detonator on a timer to allow long enough for one cycle of the AC (being SURE to turn off the heater), it likely would have taken out at least the entire house and damaged the surrounding houses, while leaving a bunch of dead body parts without any bullets in them, and he'd be in Canada (discussing his 'vacation plans' with the immigration folks, I'm certain).

So, again, I point out that one CAN'T stop this from the supply side.  I can STILL take out a whole block/high-rise any day of the week just using stuff you'd buy to clean your swimming pool (and leave all the buildings intact, just killing people).  It's likely that one could poison a whole city's water supply with simple chemicals that aren't scanned for/filtered out.  Almost anything that can be run as liquid through a pipe and burned can make one of these FAX bombs.  Any item filled with gunpowder and enclosed to allow the pressure to build up makes a lovely bomb, and if wrapped with nails, for example, becomes a handy grenade.

You have to stop nastiness from the demand side.  People have to WANT to be nice, and the culture has to support and nurture that behavior.  We don't.  Just look at TV.  We support and nurture bloodthirsty competition and winning at all costs, and if you are left behind, so be it.

It's a logical conclusion, therefore, that our culture and the behavior of it's inhabitants will reflect that mindset quite often.

So (experimenting with the supply side), we can just wait to find out how many different ways a capable engineer can devise to kill people.  Remember the Unabomber?  He even built the stuff himself.   

The alternative to trying to culture niceness is to live in a world that's like Terry Gilliam's 'Brazil' (which this world already resembles on an insanely laughable level).

I mean, when it comes down to it, gunpowder is what?  Charcoal, piss and sulphur.  

As Winston Churchill so poignantly noted, "You can count on the Americans to do the right thing, after they've exhausted all the alternatives."

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This page contains a single entry by writch published on December 27, 2008 6:22 AM.

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