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With so much Dr. Seuss in the news lately, I can’t pass a golden opportunity to discuss my favorite Dr. Seuss book, The Butter Battle Book. While The Butter Battle Book is not one of the books mentioned in the current news cycle, it should be. The Butter Battle Book has never been more relevant.

For those who don’t know The Butter Battle Book, it is the story of the Yooks and the Zooks, two neighboring societies with one drastic difference: while the Yooks butter their bread on the top, the Zooks butter their bread on the bottom. …


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A list of the articles I found interesting in January 2021.

Why We ‘Send Them Money’ — Raphael S. Cohen, RAND, 12/30/2020

This was my favorite article of the month. In this short blog, the author answers the common questions many Americans have with why it is in the US’s best interest to help other nations with development, counterterrorism, cybersecurity, and global health.

Is the SolarWinds Cyberattack an Act of War? It Is, If the United States Says It Is. — Yevgeny Vindman, Lawfare, 1/26/2021

Good article on the legal and philosophical determinations of cyber conflict retaliation. At what point…


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There are few things more exciting than seeing your name in print. For even the average writer, publishing is a wonderful process. When people read your words, and when they are moved or touched, it is even more exhilarating.

If the average writer can move people voluntarily with their words, imagine if an entire population is forced to read a writer’s work. Imagine if the entire mechanics of a nation’s publishing are behind a writer’s sales. The sky is the limit no matter how good or bad the work.

Throughout the 20th century, several of the world’s most dictators wrote…


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Here are the articles I found most interesting from December 2020:

‘I Forget About the World:’ Afghan Youth Find Escape in a Video Game — Thomas Gibbons-Neff and Fatima Faizi, New York Times, 11/23/2020

Great article on the growth of video games in Afghanistan. In a country surrounded by violence, one of the most popular games is a huge multi-player game PlayerUnknown Battleground. Not only is PUBG giving young Afghans a virtual place to escape, it is also giving them a place to control their environment. Amazing for a country and societies did not have this capability 10 years ago.


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Here are the articles I found most interesting from November 2020. I need to catch up with all the articles I have saved.

The Militarization of U.S. Politics: How Trump’s Presidency Opened the Door to Armed Electoral Interference — Aila M. Matanock and Paul Staniland, Foreign Affairs, 10/29/2020

Powerful article on the poisoning of politics in America by armed groups. The threat of violence has no place in the diplomacy of civilized people. This however, is a kicker of a paragraph.

“A core finding from research on electoral violence is that the cohesive, consistent repression and deterrence of nonstate armed…


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A few months ago, I finally decided to invest in cryptocurrencies. I figured I would get in on the fun and throw a few bucks in a digital wallet with the capability to buy and sell crypto.

(fwiw, I use Uphold. It pairs with the Brave browser that pays you to click ads. I am making money through Brave even before I invest via Uphold. Totally recommended. I should write a post on this process soon.)

I bought some bitcoin. It went up a bit. That was nice.

Then I bought some dogecoin.

For those who don’t know, dogecoin is…


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“We are tired of politics as usual,” they complained.

On January 6th, 2021, hoodlums, thugs, and insurgents broke in to the US Capitol in Washington, DC. They ransacked and looted offices. They carried the Confederate battle flag down the halls of American power. They replaced an American flag with a campaign flag of a political candidate. They disgraced America.

They were not “bad apples”, “people who went a little too far”, or any other messaging used to mitigate their heinous actions. They were extremists with intent to disrupt the business of national politics.

Their display of reckless revolt was the…


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This is way late, but these are the articles I found interesting in October 2020:

Preparing the Cyber Battlefield: Assessing a Novel Escalation Risk in a Sino-American Crisis — Ben Buchanan, Fiona S. Cunningham, Texas National Security Review, Fall 2020

This is a long but fantastic theoretical examination of US and Chinese approaches to Cyber Operations, specifically in regards to Operational Preparation of the Environment — how units (in this case, hackers) understand and prepare the environment for a possible attack or action. These major powers look at penetrating networks differently, and these online actions could cause cyber conflict to…


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(Repost.)

According to reports, an unidentified flying object (UFO) was seen crashing into a Kazakhstan lake on Saturday, January 5th. One eyewitnesses, a local chief of a police, saw a “shining flying object” plunging into the Belaya River in the May district in the Pavlodar region. The police chief then reported it to “higher authorities”.

Unfortunately for Christmas fans around the world, the jolly gentleman known as St. Nicholas, or Santa Claus, may have been killed in the crash. With talk around the world that Santa Claus would better served if he moved his operations to Kazakhstan and the morning…

Michael Lortz

Writer. Analyst. Instructor. Sometimes serious. Sometimes creative. Just a simple man trying to make his way in the universe.

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