Trump's cybersecurity book, from (Bill) O'Reilly


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Trump’s cybersecurity book, from (Bill) O’Reilly


Trump’s assertion that he knew things about the hacks that other people don’t know rather shocked me - because the only way that could be true is if Trump himself was personally involved in them. Obviously that wasn’t what he intended to convey - instead it was part of his narrative that only he understands and can solve the problems facing the country (when in reality he knows less than anyone else), and part of his transparent strategy of announcing he’s going to clear up some controversy at a particular date - and then saying nothing on that date in the hopes the controversy goes away. It’s a weirdly childish sort of lie, and even more strangely it seems to work.


Hey now, we don’t want to call tRump a liar!

That’d be unfairly ascribing intent to the falsehoods he says. In fact, let’s just say his statements are “challengable” or “questionable”. See? Now it’s like he’s a simpleton instead of a sociopath working his way into dictatorship.


It’s very much like the various prophets who regularly predict the end of the world. Oh, did I say this year?


Shouldn’t an O’reilly book be titled “Killing Trump”?

And how will Donny react to that title?


That was a pretty horrendous editorial decision. They could at least have decided to point out that he was wrong if they were worried about ascribing intent to him. But even that fails in situations like this where the lie is just part of a larger con to deflect from the truth. But I suppose decisions like that are why Trump can get away with these utterly obvious, child-like diversions.

Those guys are paragons of honesty by comparison. At least they give a solid date for an event that can be falsified (even if they are then forced to revise the issue at that point), and the date is the revelation. Trump is trying to have it both ways - pretending to be transparent and responsive in providing a date for the revealing of information, but then he just ignores the issue after that point, hoping that the previous appearance of transparency was sufficient to quiet the chatter long enough for the issue to pass in the media.


I fully realize that this is the same league and realm as grammar nazi nit-picking, but I feel the need to point out that new O’Reilly animal books have shifted to using OR Typewriter as their title font in the last couple years.


I hope that bear image is public domain.


Trump’s supposed to be doing a big reveal on Tuesday or Wednesday. I’d better set my alarm.




Can’t say I liked the change, but it’s their call, not mine. Anyway, an imprint with such a distinctive approach to design deserves better than a half assed image macro.


You’re not permanently alarmed already?


I ain’t even mad.


Perhaps a bit more disturbing that anything Trump tweets:

Bruce Schneier, a technology security expert, said Trump was right to question the safeguards that exist for protecting his own communications as president.

“If the Russian spies want to get at his data, no computer is probably safe,” said Schneier, a fellow at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. “Everything is vulnerable.”

I’m hoping that he was badly quoted. If Trump’s computer isn’t safe from the Russians*, then our computers aren’t safe from the US government, and all the fuss about secure OSs and encryption is a waste of time, right?

  • unlike his Twitter id, which probably has Skroob-level security.


It doesn’t matter how good your back end security is, if your users keep their important data in email accounts, and your IT people incorrectly identify a fraudulent password reset email as valid and your users use said password reset system to give their email passwords to foreign actors.

All these things happened, and as long as we keep breeding better idiots, they will continue to happen.


This is respecting other people gone mad!


The animal on the Python book isn’t a python, but it’s not something totally unlike a python either, like a koala bear. It’s a reptile with a long tail but still obviously not a python. This choice of animal is making me twitchy.


Well, I’m a lert. Be a lert, too!


From the Colophon

The animal on the cover of Fluent Python is a Namaqua sand lizard (Pedioplanis namaquensis)—a slender creature with a long, pinkish-brown tail. It is black with four white stripes, brown legs with white spots, and a white belly.
Active during the day, it is one of the fastest lizards. It inhabits sparsely vegetated sand gravel flats, remaining dormant in burrows during the winter, which it digs at the base of bushes. The Namaqua sand lizard can be found throughout Namibia, in arid savannah and semi-desert regions. It feeds on small insects. In November, females lay between three to five eggs.
Many of the animals on O’Reilly covers are endangered; all of them are important to the world. To learn more about how you can help, go to
The cover image is from Wood’s Natural History #3. The cover fonts are URW Type‐ writer and Guardian Sans. The text font is Adobe Minion Pro; the heading font is Adobe Myriad Condensed; and the code font is Dalton Maag’s Ubuntu Mono.

Fluent Python is sort of a (mildly) advanced text for language geeks. It’s not the same as Learning Python


C’mon. This assertion was no different from manifold other ludicrous assertions – of special knowledge or of expertise – that he’s made during the election and throughout his public career.

It’s just all the more ridiculous because this time he’s asserting knowledge of an incredibly arcane and technical and precise nature that he could not possibly possess. And because that he’s continuing his ongoing career of a complete bullshitter as President-elect.