Why the Air Force Thinks It Can Turn Gamers Into Its Next Top Guns

In late May, the U.S. Air Force announced its intention to release an advanced video game simulation. The theory is that the game, if successful, will be an effective recruitment tool among high school students.

If this sounds familiar, it’s because the U.S. Army already did the exact same thing with a game called “America’s Army,” launched in 2002. That one was for a while relatively popular, but as a recruitment tool there’s little doubt it failed. Indeed, it was panned early and often for claiming to offer a realistic soldiering experience while glamorizing it as an exciting and largely consequence-free adventure. The game, of course, never showed the tedium or the dark side of military service in conflict—but what proper recruitment propaganda ever does?

Not content to merely copy a failed program, the so-far untitled Air Force game seeks to combine the allure of video games with the Orwellian realities of modern “big data” applications that the government is so fond of. In this case, officials have suggested they are literally going to monitor players to spot particularly talented ones they can recruit.

Call it recruitment recon.

As an example, imagine that the Air Force identifies a player who is particularly good at controlling the game’s simulated planes, so they offer him/her a $100,000 signing bonus to sign up for the real thing. But isn’t it possible that video game talent might not translate into real-life skills in combat? Incredibly, that seems to have been lost on the USAF.

Which is why this could be an even bigger disaster than the “America’s Army” folly—and much more expensive, too. While the Army’s gambit cost millions to design, it at least had a limited return on investment. The Air Force is prepared to throw major bonuses at good video game players on the notion that, like the 1984 movie The Last Starfighter, that’s where you’re going to find real talent.

The reason this makes sense to the Air Force (but nobody else) is because, with the advent of drone operations (i.e. remote control targeting), a number of people actually are employed in joystick-based warfare. It’s not clear whether the game will feature a drone operator mode (based in some outpost in the Nevada desert), as it seems to be focused on advanced warplanes in the heat of battle, not blowing up Pakistani wedding parties from thousands of miles away. This should come as no surprise because the life of an actual drone operator is reportedly pretty miserable, and the point of the Air Force’s game is to get kids to play so you can collect all sorts of data from them.

So far, Air Force officials aren’t providing a lot of specifics, just ambitions. They’ve also avoided estimating what the program will cost. Creating a game advanced enough to reliably attract an audience gets more expensive every year. At this point just developing a game can be counted on to cost a minimum of $100 million, to say nothing of all of the server and metadata processing costs, and the costs associated with marketing the game.

This is precisely why high-end video games don’t attempt to survive as advertising platforms. The cost of developing games has grown precipitously over the years, and players are focused on playing. They don’t want to be sold anything—not by companies, not by Uncle Sam.

This is why using a war simulation video game as a marketing tool is a terrible idea. Even in the highly unlikely event that the U.S. Air Force actually does make a popular video game, that doesn’t mean its fan base is going to be inclined toward military service, let alone suited to it. This is what happens when you combine lofty recruitment goals with a bottomless pit of taxpayer money: the military is encouraged to make reckless attempts to engage the public. The Air Force now appears to be lining up one of the most reckless of blunders yet.

Jason Ditz is news editor at Antiwar.com, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the cause of non-interventionism. His work has appeared in Forbes, the Toronto Star, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, the Providence Journal, the Daily Caller, the American Conservative, the Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.

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Once Again Certain Americans Need To Learn From History

It looks like we are in for a long hot summer in America.  I am one who does not like extremely hot humid weather.  It is even more painful when the prospects of ignorant, indoctrinated Soros paid gumps may seek to riot in American streets this summer.  The reason for such plans are always the same tired excuses given by bitter useful idiots who don’t know anything and got that mixed up when it comes to justice, freedom, liberty and reparations.  To this day, many black Americans who stupidly call themselves African Americans do not even understand how reparations are designed to be carried out.

Just recently in Seattle, white patrons at a certain bar were required to pay for the drinks of black female patrons.  The reason given “it was a form of reparations for slavery.”  That makes about as much sense as white shoppers being forced to buy groceries for black grocery store patrons as a form of reparations.  It is stupid and victimizes people who had nothing to do with slavery and gives a false sense of gotcha to those receiving reparation drinks or whatever.

Black Americans would be better served by the example of other people groups who have dealt with cruel and unfair treatment.  After the Empire of Japan bombed Pearl Harbor during World War Two, it was not long before Japanese residents in the United States suffered a major ordeal.  They were rounded up and systematically tossed into concentration camps.  The reason given is were at war and the Japanese might carry out war activities within the continental United States.  After all, it was the Japanese who fooled America into thinking they wanted to be our friend by signing a peace agreement with our republic.  They had even given beautiful Flowering trees to cities like Washington D.C. and Cleveland which annually bloom every spring.

The Japanese residents in America suffered in concentration camps and had faced racist treatment prior to the Peal Harbor attacks.  But they took it in stride and like the Chinese who also immigrated to the United States received shabby treatment.  But rather steep themselves of a caldron of bitterness, the Japanese and Chinese immigrants patiently learned how to succeed economically.  They supported businesses in their respective communities and gradually became highly successful, despite whatever white Americans thought of them at the time.

In addition, although the Japanese could have been very bitter, but to the immeasurable embarrassment and chagrin of those who tossed Japanese into concentration camps, they enthusiastically mobilized their sons and sent them into the American armed forces to volunteer their services.  The Japanese regiments were among the more highly decorated in World War II.  Although they went into the military ranks under suspicion and resentment, they came out as heralded heroes.

But of all the ethnic groups in America it seems that Black Americans have had the most difficulty securing their place as assimilated.  Many early political leaders including Abraham Lincoln expressed concerned over the ability of Blacks to adjust because of the slavery culture in which the first few generations were raised.   Despite apprehensions, freedom and education brought tremendous hope and optimism to Black Americans within three generations.  After three generations, many blacks were overcoming the culture gap.  In time Blacks in every other nation on earth saw their ethnic counterparts in America experiencing a higher standard of living than Blacks in any other part of the world. In fact, by 1970 a black high school student in Alabama or Mississippi had a higher chance at obtaining a collegiate education than a white student in Great Britain.

Great Americans like Frederick Douglas, Booker T. Washington and George Washington Carver all believed that hard work, an education and faith in God would ensure a pathway to success and blaze a trail for following generations to follow.  Still others like W. E.B. Dubois and white democrats fought to instill a level of bitterness and hatred for America in Blacks and conned them into expecting government gratuities as a main source of revenue.  Experience has proven that such a mindset has corrupted and debilitated Black Americans socially, economically and most horribly in family life where females now run over 70 percent of all Black American households.

Many tend to uphold the Black female as morally superior to the Black man. Yet they fail to answer the question that if Black females are morally superior, why is it they continue to raise the most damaged generations of Black boys in the history of the republic?  After all it is they who have complete access to their boys without any input from men, because of their aversion to Black male authority.  Remember, they preferred government handouts over a working Black father in the home.  Until the 1970s, the majority of Black American households were headed by Black American men who either had one or two jobs.

In the mid-sixties there were groups of Marxist agitators who promoted violence an attitude of entitlement among Black Americans.  One of the most famous was Eldridge Cleaver, who had been trained in Marxist philosophy and evil tactics while serving a fifteen year sentence in a California prison.  In 1967 he became Minister of Information for the Black Panthers.  Their goal was to use violence to wipe out the economic and social structure of the United States and roll out communism so that everyone would be equal, but equally poor.  Just like today’s Black Lives Matter movement, it wasn’t about working to improve the quality of life for anyone.  But to destroy the prospects of a good life for everyone, except the elites at the top of course.

After leading a wave of violence in 1968, Eldridge Cleaver and his wife fled the United State and hid out in Cuba for eight years.  A funny thing happened.  While in Cuba he witnessed the horrendous failure of communism as a means to improve life for the common man.  Mr. Cleaver concluded that it would be better to come back to America and pay for his crimes in prison than to remain free and morbidly disappointed in Cuba.  Black Americans today would be much better off if they researched the Eldridge Cleaver story for themselves and came to the logical conclusion that while it may not be perfect in America,  it is the best hope for mankind after God almighty.  Here’s hoping and praying, that they awaken from their democrat party influenced nightmare and seek to live rather than just exist as Soros, Alynski inspired cretins.  I know it might seem impossible, but miracles do happen.

Enjoy the miracle of Blowin’ away the Myths and Revealing the Truth via #TheEdwardsNotebook commentary every day on #freedominamericaradio, #goodtalkradio #talkamericaradio #shrmedia during #MoneyTalkwithMelanie at 5:10 PM EST, on KCKQ AM 1180 Reno, Nevada during AM News, just after 4:30 AM during the Captain’s America Third Watch show emanating nationwide from flagship station AM 860 WGUL the Answer Tampa Florida.  The Edwards Notebook is also heard regularly on FM 101.5 and AM 1400 the Patriot, Detroit.  Last but definitely not least, #TheRonEdwardsExperience talk show is heating up the airwaves to a growing audience Fridays at 4:00 PM EST, 1:00 PM PT on KCKQ AM 1180 Reno Nevada, #shrmedia and americamatters.us and at 7:00 PM PT Thursdays on #goodtalkradio.

© 2018 Ron Edwards – All Rights Reserved

E-Mail Ron Edwards: [email protected]

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Arizona Senate Puts Coal Tax Relief Bill on Hold

A bill to provide tax relief for Arizona’s Navajo Generating Station (NGS) by exempting income derived from coal mining from the state’s transaction privilege tax (TPT) was held up in the Arizona Senate’s Finance Committee with the legislation falling one vote short of passage.

The bill’s sponsors are working to gain additional support before bringing it up for reconsideration in the wake of the March 14 setback.

Native-American Workforce

NGS, a 2,250-megawatt coal-fired power plant located on the Navajo Nation reservation near Page, Arizona, is the largest electricity power generator in the state. NGS operates under a lease agreement with the Navajo Nation, supplying electricity to customers in Arizona, California, and Nevada. It also provides the power needed to pump water for agriculture and municipal uses from the Colorado River to Phoenix and Tucson through the Central Arizona Project.

The plant is jointly owned by the Salt River Project and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, who own the largest percentages of the installation, and the Arizona Public Service Co., NV Energy, and Tucson Electric Power, who have smaller shares. NGS employs more than 400 full-time staff, 90 percent of whom are Navajo.

NGS uses coal from the Kayenta Mine, operated by Peabody Western Coal Company under lease agreements with the Navajo Nation and the Hopi Tribe. The coal is delivered to NGS by a 75-mile electric railroad owned and operated by the plant. Ninety-nine percent of the mine’s 340 employees are Native American.

‘A Tax Elimination’

Arizona’s TPT taxes companies’ gross receipts in 16 separate business classifications, including mining, retail, telecommunications, and utilities. Arizona also allows municipalities to levy local TPTs.

HB 2003 would exempt coal from the retail and mining classifications under the state TPT and any municipal TPT and sales taxes. A Fiscal Note prepared for HB 2003 estimated although the proposed exemptions would reduce Arizona’s General Fund by $9.1 million in Fiscal Year 2019, the ongoing revenue loss from a closed NGS would be $12.2 million.

State Rep. Mark Finchem (R-Tucson), HB 2003’s sponsor, says TPT never should have been imposed on coal mining.

“This is … a tax elimination,” said Finchem. “The state does not collect a [TPT] on the wind, the sun, or the water, nor does it collect the tax on natural gas and nuclear fuels, … [so the TPT on coal] never should have been laid.”

Fails Tax Tests

John Nothdurft, director of government relations at The Heartland Institute, which publishes Environment & Climate News, testified HB 2003 would improve energy markets in the state, during a hearing before Arizona House Ways and Means Committee on February 14.

“Arizona’s transaction privilege tax … [is] dissimilar to how other states tax raw materials used to produce energy, such as coal, natural gas, and other fossil fuels,” Nothdurft testified. “Sound tax policy generally abides by four basic principles: It is applied to a broad base; kept at a competitive, low rate; it is non-distorting; and rate-setting and the regulatory process are completely transparent to the state’s citizens.

“Arizona’s transaction privilege tax fails on at least three, if not all four, of these principles,” Nothdurft said.

High Closing Costs

Nothdurft also testified failure to implement the proposed tax reform might cause NGS to close, which would increase energy prices in Arizona.

“Thirty-one percent of Arizona’s electricity generation comes from coal, but this would significantly decrease if NGS is closed,” said Nothdurft. “This is a significant problem, since the cost of coal electricity is much cheaper than other forms of electricity—especially wind and solar, which are heavily subsidized and yet remain more expensive.”

Severe Power Disruptions Forecast

Fred Palmer, a senior fellow at The Heartland Institute, says ending TPT for coal mining would benefit all of Arizona.

“HB 2003 is designed to help extend the commercial life of NGS, a crucial resource for the economic future of the Navajo Nation and the Hopi Tribe, as well as water users, electric consumers, and agricultural interests in Arizona,” Palmer said. “Since a closed NGS will produce no mining tax revenues, opposition to the bill can only be construed as anti-Native, anti-fossil fuels, and anti-growth.”

A recent study by utility consulting firm Quanta Technology confirms NGS is critical to the power supply in the Southwest.

The report states closing NGS in 2019 would result in “power deficiencies which could evolve into potential voltage collapse and outages, load shedding triggers, potential rotating brownouts, failing transformers or transmission lines and equipment damage” affecting Phoenix, Flagstaff, other large Arizona cities, and California cities such as Lugo and Shandon.

Confident in Bill’s Prospects

Although HB 2003 stalled in the Senate Finance Committee, Carlyle Begay, a Navajo and former Arizona state senator for the district where NGS is located, says he is confident HB 2003 will eventually pass.

Finance Committee member Warren Petersen (R-Gilbert), who initially withheld support for the bill, which kept it from moving out of the committee, now supports the proposal, Begay says.

In addition, “we will have enough Democrat votes to pass the bill through the Senate,” Begay said. “The commitment will be in place in case we need it.”

Editor’s Note: This article was published in cooperation with The Heartland Institute’s Environment & Climate News.

PHOTO: The Arizona Capitol Museum building in Phoenix, Arizona. Photo by Gage Skidmore.

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Sierra Stages Presents Roald Dahl’s James and the Giant Peach

This summer, Sierra Stages is proud to present the musical ” Roald Dahl ‘s James and the Giant Peach” featuring words and music by the Tony and Academy Award-winning songwriting team of Benj Pasek and Justin Paul and book by Timothy Allen McDonald , based on the book “James and the Giant Peach” by Roald Dahl . ” Roald Dahl ‘s James and the Giant Peach” plays for four weekends only from July 12 through August 4 at the historic Nevada Theatre in Nevada City.

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Illinois Gun Owners , “We’ve Done Nothing Wrong”

End Game Ban All Guns
Illinois Gun Owners , We’ve Done Nothing Wrong

Illinois – -(Ammoland.com)- We are down to the last four days of regular Illiniois session. There is an all-out push to pass something, anything, in the wake of recent tragedies in the news.

One man in Nevada, maybe the only person in the whole world, commits a heinous act with a firearm accessory and now there is call to ban that item for all the law-abiding Illinois gun owners – gun owners who DID NOT commit the crime. Failure to comply gets you a felony and up to 30 years in prison under one proposal.

That’s higher than 2nd degree murder and comparable to 1st degree murder.

A mentally ill student in Florida goes on a rampage after the FBI and local officials ignored warnings. Now there is call for an increased waiting period to purchase a firearm for all the Illinois gun owners – gun owners who DID NOT commit the crime.

Straw purchasers buy guns and sell them illegally after leaving the store – they get a slap on the wrist when caught and some do no jail time Then, anti-gun legislators want to put onerous, burdensome and redundant regulations on the lawful firearms dealers who are licensed and monitored by the federal government. Illinois Legislators have written vague, broadly written bills that would cause the closing of many, if not most, of our hometown gun shops.

AND – anti-gunners are still trying to register firearms and firearm owners. An amendment to SB337 Gun Dealer Licensing bill includes:

“A transferee shall not be criminally liable under this Section provided that he or she provides the Department of State Police with the transfer records in accordance with procedures established by the Department. The Department shall establish, by rule, a standard form on its website.”.

We’ve seen this time and again. An option becomes a mandate. A mandate becomes a criminal act. There are a lot of reasons to oppose SB337 Firearm Dealer Licensing, but this provision alone is more than enough to call your legislators and tell them WE ARE NOT GOING DOWN THIS ROAD that leads to registering private sales or possession of firearms.

URGENT –

Call your IL legislators first thing Tuesday morning. Firmly tell them to vote NO on any bill that further restricts the rights of law-abiding firearm owners. Tell them firearm owners are tired of being penalized for crimes committed in other states, tired of having our rights stripped from us all for the sake of, “We have to do something”, regardless of the fact it will do nothing to stop the acts of criminals. Be heard, stand firm. It is urgent that you make the call. That goes ten-fold if you live in a suburban area. Your Constitutional rights are not safe, they are under attack by the very legislators you elected to protect your rights – make the call!


 

Illinois CarryAbout IllinoisCarry.com:

The IllinoisCarry forum was started in April 2004. The idea was that Illinois needed a central location to communicate ideas and information regarding 2nd Amendment issues in Illinois. There are many organizations in Illinois working to protect our 2nd Amendment Rights. Working with these groups IllinoisCarry has become the central location for information and Action Alerts. IllinoisCarry will not endorse political candidates. We simply provide information so voters can make informed decisions. Our goal is to join the other 48 states that allow their citizens to carry concealed firearms. We encourage you to register on our forum and join the fight for your 2nd Amendment Rights in Illinois.

Visit their website.

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Fallen Special Forces members honored by veterans, community at local ceremony

LAS VEGAS – A rose, a flag, and a salute — all to honor some of the Valley’s bravest servicemen. Hundreds of people gathered at the Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery on Sunday. Everyone paid their respects to fallen members of the United States …

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Latest Polling Shows Laxalt Made Bad Choice

As reported today by 360Daily, Nevada Republican Candidate for Governor, Adam Laxalt, may wish he had done some preliminary polling before endorsing Michael Roberson for Lt. Governor. Laxalt endorsed Roberson early on, and the pair are campaigning together as a ticket. They currently appear together in TV ads. Much like in presidential races. However, the […]

The post Latest Polling Shows Laxalt Made Bad Choice appeared first on Guardian Liberty Voice.

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Vegas envy: Is Tampa Bay ready for a Vegas’ birth-to-best story?

A statue of Julius Caesar in front of Caesars Palace displays an oversized Vegas Golden Knights hockey stick and a flag with the team logo as an electronic sign displays a message of congratulations the day after the Golden Knights won the Western Conference Finals during the 2018 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs on May 21, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Hotel-casinos along the Las Vegas Strip are showing their support for the hometown team after the Golden Knights beat the Winnipeg Jets four games to one to reach the Stanley Cup Finals on Sunday.

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Las Vegas High School students to be featured in American Heart Association cookbook

Over 22 high school teams from Nevada recently competed in the Teens Cooking With Heart competition, sponsored by the American Heart Association (AHA), at the Culinary Academy of Las Vegas. The team of Christopher Mayoral-Gutierrez and Thaksin Lalic, both …

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Nevada club pro tied for Senior PGA Championship lead

Nevada club professional Stuart Smith shot a 5-under 66 for a share of the first-round lead in the Senior PGA Championship Nevada club pro tied for Senior PGA Championship lead Nevada club professional Stuart Smith shot a 5-under 66 for a share of the first-round lead in the Senior PGA Championship Check out this story on USATODAY.com: https://usat.ly/2J4oTco BENTON HARBOR, Mich. – Nevada club professional Stuart Smith admitted sleeping on the lead of the biggest tournament available to him might be a problem.

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