Saturday, March 17, 2018

Good advice on reducing major medical expenses

A writer styling himself "hedgeless_horseman" offers a detailed article on how to negotiate with medical service providers, to reduce their bills by as much as 80% or more, if you're lucky.  It's very long, but packed full of useful advice, and is worth reading - particularly if, like me, you're older, and can expect your medical expenses to increase.  Here's a brief excerpt.

Primarily, this talk is to educate those of you that are, now, or may be, in the future, responsible for paying for your own healthcare.  It is not directed at the nearly half of America that is now on Medicare, Medicaid, VA, Tricare, government employee insurance, etc., those whose healthcare expenses are the responsibility of the taxpayer, and who are essentially wards of The State.  However, the conversation we are going to have should still be interesting for them, too, and God only knows how long that government gravy train will last, so all of you should really pay attention.

Like all the speakers at this first ZeroHedge Symposium, I am talking about how to, in many instances, remove the middleman, in this case the health insurance company, and how to negotiate directly with healthcare providers, specifically physicians, hospitals, diagnostic facilities, and pharmacies.  This is a discussion about how to negotiate to pay less for healthcare, and not a discussion about how to not pay for healthcare.

. . .

You are going to need five things, which I am going to give to you, today, free of charge!

  1. Some absolutely critical industry vocabulary
  2. A clear understanding of how healthcare is priced in the USA
  3. Insight into to actual pricing
  4. A proven negotiation strategy, including:
    • The point of contact
    • Foreknowledge of what prices medical providers will usually agree to
    • A sample offer and agreement
  5. The confidence to successfully negotiate

There's much more at the link. Informative and recommended reading.


Saab's GlobalEye: an example of too many military eggs in one basket?

Saab's new GlobalEye, an airborne early warning and control platform, has just made its maiden flight in Sweden.  Three have been ordered by the United Arab Emirates, and the company is pitching the aircraft (particularly its newly enhanced radar system) as a replacement for NATO's ageing Boeing E-3 Sentry AWACS aircraft in due course.  Here's a video clip of the first flight.

The base platform is a Bombardier Global 6000 large business jet.  Combat Aircraft reports:

The GlobalEye features the new Erieye ER (Extended Range) active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar in a ‘balance beam’ fairing atop the fuselage, which Saab says offers a 70 per cent improvement in range performance when compared to its predecessor. The aircraft also features the Leonardo Seaspray 7500E X-band maritime search radar and a FLIR Systems electro-optical turret below the nose.

The GlobalEye has an 11hr+ endurance — crew comfort and overall performance mean the airframe is ‘ideally suited for special mission specifications’, according to Saab. The cabin has five operator workstations plus a rest area with four seats, and can also be configured for remote operation and mission support from a ground station. The airborne operator complement is intended to be flexible, based on air force needs, up to a maximum of nine. The flight crew comprises two pilots.

There's more at the link.

On the face of it, that's an exceptionally capable aircraft, able to deal with a wide range of surveillance, command and control missions and tasks, on land, at sea and in the air.  However, I suspect that simultaneous, multi-tasking capability may offer its own set of problems.

First off, one can have too many things happening at the same time.  Anyone who's been in combat knows the truth of Helmuth von Moltke's (paraphrased) dictum:  "No plan survives contact with the enemy".  In my (admittedly limited) experience, the same thing can happen to command and control systems and procedures, particularly when problems and their effects "cascade".  What happens if too many things are going on?  One can lose sight of the forest for the trees;  or, alternatively, one might concentrate on the whole forest so intently that one fails to notice problems affecting a few trees.  Small issues can easily escalate into much larger ones, if not nipped in the bud early on.  Will a single command and control node be able to cope?

Until now, sensors have typically been distributed across multiple command and control platforms:  for example, in the USAF, the E-3 Sentry has handled AWACS duties;  variants of the RC-135 and other aircraft have handled SIGINT, ground surveillance and control, etc.;  and maritime ditto has been dealt with by the US Navy.  GlobalEye combines all these duties and sensors into a single aircraft, whose sensors can reach out for several hundred miles in all directions.  With so many duties to perform, and so large an area to cover, will its operators be able to handle all the tasks expected of them?  In theory, they might . . . but in practice, perhaps not so efficiently as theory would suggest.

There's also the factor that this is an all-in-one solution.  If I were the enemy of a nation fielding GlobalEye, I'd realize that I have to take out those surveillance aircraft at all costs, at the very start of hostilities (or even before).  My enemy would be relying on them for command and control;  therefore, if they aren't available, his command and control will be severely impaired, just when he needs it most.  I'd do whatever it took to get rid of them - special forces attacks on their base, operators with ground-to-air missiles to shoot at them as they took off or landed, sabotage of their maintenance facilities and/or spare parts, assassination of their crews, and (of course) attacks on them during their missions, provided I could get through the defenses that would undoubtedly try to protect such vital assets.  What's more, because these are very complex, relatively expensive aircraft, there won't be very many of them (for example, the launch customer, United Arab Emirates, has ordered only three).  Therefore, damaging or destroying even one of so small a fleet might have a disproportionate impact on my enemy.

Those aircraft (and their crews, and support facilities and personnel) might as well have great big targets painted all over them.  If they can be adequately protected, that's great . . . but I suspect most armed forces (including the USA's) would find that rather difficult across the entire spectrum of potential threats to them.  I think Globaleye is a great peacetime or limited-hostilities (i.e. terrorism rather than all-out war) solution for a nation like the UAE.  Whether it will continue to be so during a major conflict is debatable.  Can a minor power like the UAE defend it against threats like those discussed above?  Your guess is as good as mine . . . but mine is, probably not - and without the aircraft, on which they'll undoubtedly come to rely, will the UAE's command and control structure be able to cope?  Will it become so dependent on such technology that it can no longer function without it?

(That's a question the US armed forces, and those of other major powers, must answer as well.  In an increasingly technological environment, the loss of satellite communications, for example, would instantly overload the radio spectrum to such an extent that many modern weapons systems would no longer be able to function.  Could the USAF or US Navy operate as successfully if denied the use of some or all of their command and control technology?  Almost certainly not.)


Friday, March 16, 2018

One of the saddest headlines I've ever read

I was not so much surprised as deeply saddened to read this headline and report the other day.

Man strangled woman during sex just two hours after they met

Mark Bruce, 32, met 20-year-old Chloe Miazek at a bus stop in the early hours of the morning on November 3 last year after they had been on separate nights out in Aberdeen.

She died at his hands when he choked her after they were said to have discovered a mutual interest in erotic asphyxiation.

Miss Miazek, a Tesco worker from Kemnay, Aberdeenshire, had been drinking with friends in the city before being asked to leave a nightclub.

The High Court in Aberdeen heard that both had been drinking heavily and that she died in seconds after he seized her neck as they had sex in his city centre flat.

There's more at the link.

When someone - male or female - has so little respect for their physical, mental and spiritual integrity that they will engage in extremely dangerous sexual practices with a stranger, without knowing anything about them . . . that's tragic, but also symptomatic of so much that's wrong with our society.  There's no sense of right or wrong any more, no sense of what may or may not be wise, or appropriate, or safe, or . . . whatever.

This woman may as well have thrown herself on the garbage dump outside town.  That's the value she placed on her life - her actions prove it.  As for the man, he's admitted culpable homicide (i.e. manslaughter, in US terms), but denied murder, because the erotic asphyxiation was consensual.  The court agreed with him.  The fact that he can eagerly look forward to strangling a stranger while engaged in intercourse marks him as, at the very least, mentally suspect, as far as I'm concerned.  If that had been my daughter, I don't know what I'd have done to him, even if she had consented to the act.

For so many people, sex is just "f***ing" now.  There's no sense of mystery, or love, or romance, or intimacy, at all.  If it's just physical, then obviously, anything goes, right?

I'm glad I'm not a young person today.  The thought of dealing with such attitudes sends a cold chill down my spine.  At least, when I grew up, we were taught some semblance of values and respect for others.  Today?  Not so much, it seems.


I sympathize

From Pearls Before Swine by Stephan Pastis:



Thursday, March 15, 2018

Oh, the irony!

Sent in by reader Gerald F, to whom a respectful doff o' the hat and a broad grin.  Clickit to biggit.

I wonder what Leonidas and his 300 Spartan hoplites would say to that - after, that is, they cleaned all the Persian blood off their hands, armor, swords, and what have you?


The Las Vegas shooting: why the deafening official silence?

I have no idea what's going on with the investigation into the Las Vegas shooting last year.  However, the deafening silence from official sources is inevitably giving rise to all sorts of conspiracy theories.  Two that I've come across recently - which may or may not be more or less accurate;  we have no way of telling - are:

I think the official silence has now become counterproductive.  We, the people, are entitled to answers.  The authorities can't simply decide to keep this quiet.  We have a right to know.  Who committed this crime?  Why?  Who or what was behind it?  Did the shooter(s) have associates, and if so, who?  What about the shooter's girlfriend, and all the unanswered questions surrounding her actions before, during, and after the incident?

I think it's time we began demanding answers from our elected representatives.  If we don't get them there, many people will take - and believe - whatever they can get from anywhere else.  What's more, our news media is complicit in the official silence.  The Washington Post proudly proclaims that "Democracy dies in darkness".  Well, so does truth - so why are the Post, and its peers in the news media, not doing everything possible to uncover the truth of the Vegas massacre, and tell us about it?

Something in Las Vegas stinks - and it's official.


Our lack of online privacy is mind-blowing

When we click on the "Accept" button(s) for online service providers' terms and conditions, we typically don't bother to read all the fine print.  We simply take it on faith that the provider will protect our privacy to at least some extent.  Sadly, that's seldom the case - as demonstrated by PayPal, which offers a list of several hundred "third parties" with whom it shares information.  The extent and use of that information may surprise you.

A few examples of reasons why PayPal shares it:
  • "To allow payment processing settlement services, and fraud checking"
  • "To allow telephone and email customer support and marketing services"
  • "To calibrate and optimise speech recognition performance..." *
  • "To support investigation of suspicious activities related to money laundering, terrorist financing, and/or violation of Global Sanctions and corresponding reporting to regulatory agencies"
  • "To execute and measure retargeting campaigns in order to identify visitors and redirect them though personalised advertising campaigns"
  • "To investigate (including, without limitation, to carry out asset and/or site inspections and/or business evaluations) and/or collect (and/or assist with the collection of) debt from potentially and actually insolvent customers"
*  (This is what happens when a pre-recorded message on the customer support line tells you that "This call may be monitored or recorded for quality assurance purposes".  The recording is provided to other companies to improve their speech recognition algorithms.  It may also be used to develop a speaker recognition system that will allow your voice to be identified by an artificial intelligence system, even if you don't provide your name.)

PayPal will doubtless argue that such use is explicitly permitted in its terms of service, which we accept when signing up for the service;  but many of us aren't aware of how far-reaching that has become.  The quantity and quality of information shared is mind-boggling, when one considers that it represents an almost total invasion of our online privacy.  A few examples:
  • "Name, address, details of payment instruments, and details of payment transactions"
  • "All information supplied when applying for a product or account functionality (including information obtained from social media accounts or online reputation data)" *
  • "Recordings of a sample of customer support telephone calls, which may include any or all account information transmitted during the call"
  • "Name, aliases, address, e-mail address, telephone numbers, time zone location, passport ID, nationality, date of birth, place of birth, gender, marital status, driver’s license ID, social security number or other government ID, transactional and account activity data, funding instrument (bank account, credit card number)"
  • "Photo of customer and document images supplied by customer including all information they contain.  Information from document’s embedded RF chip (when applicable)"
  • "Anonymous ID generated by cookies, pixel tags or similar technologies embedded in webpages, ads and emails delivered to users"
*  The underlined text indicates that PayPal is using third party data and/or programs to link users' accounts with their social media activity, in order to build up a more informative profile of them - and is then sharing that profile with others.  If it contains errors or erroneous linkages, or things we'd rather not have linked to our business personas (for example, those photographs of us, drunken and topless, taken on our summer break at college, and posted online by a "friend" who identified us in the pictures), that's too bad.  It still gets shared.  That can have direct and immediate consequences when we, say, apply for a job.  Do we really want our prospective employer to find out about them?  If they look up our personal data, including running a credit check for which PayPal has supplied information, they might.

Many will argue that all of those uses of our data have a legitimate corporate purpose, and therefore are justified.  My problem is, their sharing is routine - i.e. we never know how many times our data has been shared, or with whom, or for what reason.  After a while, our information might reside on literally hundreds, perhaps thousands of computer systems in companies and organizations with whom we've never had any direct business relationship.  PayPal might be exemplary in its data security, but what about those other organizations?  Are they as scrupulous?  I doubt it - and, if that's the case, is it any wonder how easy hackers find it to steal our personal data, and use it to defraud us?

This makes me angry.  There's nothing I can do about it, because PayPal is only one example.  Almost every organization with whom we do business online will use our data for similar purposes.  However, I long for an earlier age when we had more rights to privacy.  I resent my data being scattered around like so much grass-seed.  Who knows in what unwanted places it might take root?


Wednesday, March 14, 2018

A punked coat of arms

An e-mail from a list of which I'm a member alerted me to the coat of arms of Sir Christopher Frayling, British writer on popular culture, who's particularly well known for his study of the so-called "spaghetti westerns" of Sergio Leone, and similar movies.  That led to an interesting discussion with the College of Arms, as Wikipedia reports:

In 2001, he was awarded a knighthood for "Services to Art and Design Education" and chose as his motto "PERGE SCELUS MIHI DIEM PERFICIAS", which can be translated as "Proceed, varlet, and let the day be rendered perfect for my benefit". That is, 'Go ahead, punk, make my day'.

I giggled when I read that, and looked up his coat of arms to confirm it.  Sure enough:

I'm sure Clint Eastwood approves!


Another anti-gunner falsifies her arguments

A journalist lobbies against "stand your ground" laws for Idaho by lying through her teeth about the Zimmerman case.


A young boy with dreams of becoming a pilot is gunned down in 2012. On his person: Arizona Watermelon Fruit Juice. A package of candy Skittles.

. . .

In Florida, Zimmerman pursued Martin. He fatally shot the seventeen year old, and promptly was protected under Florida’s “stand your ground” law. In trial, Zimmerman would claim a defense of self, despite aggressively following and tackling Martin. And according to Florida law, he had the right to do so. The jury could not charge him, and Zimmerman would walk free. One juror said Zimmerman “got away with murder” precisely because how Florida’s “stand your ground” was written.

. . .

Laws like “stand your ground” provoke racial bias and racism. According to TakePart, nearly 20 percent of homicides are deemed justifiable when the shooter is white and the victim is black. This compares with the 1 percent of shootings where the victim was white and the shooter black.

This structural racism at its finest: a modern-day lynch law.

There's more at the link.

Let's count the inaccuracies, omissions and lies in just that short excerpt.
  1. Trayvon Martin wasn't a "young boy", but a 17-year-old young adult.  Furthermore, he wasn't carrying juice and candy for separate consumption, but as ingredients for "Purple Drank", an illicit narcotic mixture.  His social media posts confirm he was a frequent user.
  2. The judge in the Trayvon Martin case advised the jury that Florida's "stand your ground" laws meant that Zimmerman did not have a duty to retreat, and had the right to defend himself.  However, that was not the cause of his acquittal on the charge of second-degree murder brought against him.  The charge, and the "not guilty" verdict, did not reference that statute at all.  The verdict was based on the (lack of) sufficient evidence to convict him.
  3. "The jury could not charge him"?  Juries don't charge anybody.  They assess guilt or innocence on charges brought by prosecutors.
  4. "Laws like 'stand your ground' provoke racial bias and racism".  Says who?  That's her opinion, not a statement of fact.  The statistics from TakePart that she cites refer to shootings that are found justifiable.  That justification does not rely on "stand your ground" laws, but on the whole panoply of criminal versus justified homicide.  No "stand your ground" laws allow or excuse the shooting of innocent persons.  Why does the author not comment on the actions of the people who were shot - actions that would justify regarding them as a threat, irrespective of their race?

Looks like yet another journalist prepared to twist facts and dance in the blood of the victims of crime as she inveigles against common sense and in favor of moonbat shibboleths.  I won't wish for anyone to be a victim of serious crime, to wake them up to the reality of which they clearly know nothing . . . but sometimes I'm sorely tempted!


Doofus Of The Day #1,001

Today's award goes to an inept car thief in England.

A man who attempted to steal a Mini Cooper in Northumberland became wedged on a narrow set of stairs and had to be freed from the vehicle.

The car, with Union flag branding on its roof, was discovered in the Castle Walk area of Carlisle Park, in Morpeth, on Monday night. The matter was reported to Northumbria Police whose officers cordoned off the path.

However, the car remained in its awkward position all morning, prompting those passing to stop and take pictures.

Police ... said: "Emergency services attended and the driver was freed from the vehicle, a red Mini Cooper S. He was not injured during the incident.

"Enquiries into the incident are ongoing but a 31-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of aggravated vehicle taking, and remains in police custody."

There's more at the link.

Lesson learned:  when planning your escape route, make sure it's suitable for the purpose!


Is it too late to confiscate your kids' smartphones?

I've referred before to the dangers posed by overuse of smartphones by children and teenagers.  Now, an article by a child psychologist reinforces the warnings of others.  It's titled "The Tech Industry’s War on Kids:  How psychology is being used as a weapon against children".  It's long, but it repays your time and attention.  Here's an excerpt.

Quietly, using screens and phones for entertainment has become the dominant activity of childhood. Younger kids spend more time engaging with entertainment screens than they do in school, and teens spend even more time playing with screens and phones than they do sleeping. The result is apparent in restaurants, the car sitting next to you at the stoplight, and even many classrooms: Attesting to the success of persuasive technology, kids are so taken with their phones and other devices that they have turned their backs to the world around them. Hiding in bedrooms on devices, or consumed by their phones in the presence of family, many children are missing out on real-life engagement with family and school — the two cornerstones of childhood that lead them to grow up happy and successful. Even during the few moments kids have away from their devices, they are often preoccupied with one thought: getting back on them.

In addition to the displacement of healthy childhood activities, persuasive technologies are pulling kids into often toxic digital environments. A too frequent experience for many is being cyberbullied, which increases their risk of skipping school and considering suicide. And there is growing recognition of the negative impact of FOMO, or the fear of missing out, as kids spend their social media lives watching a parade of peers who look to be having a great time without them, feeding their feelings of loneliness and being less than.

The combined effects of the displacement of vital childhood activities and exposure to unhealthy online environments is wrecking a generation. In her recent Atlantic article, “Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?,” Dr. Jean Twenge, a professor of psychology at San Diego State University, describes how long hours spent on smartphones and social media are driving teen girls in the U.S. to experience high rates of depression and suicidal behaviors.

And as the typical age when kids get their first smartphone has fallen to 10, it’s no surprise to see serious psychiatric problems — once the domain of teens — now enveloping young kids. Self-inflicted injuries, such as cutting, that are serious enough to require treatment in an emergency room, have increased dramatically in 10- to 14-year-old girls, up 19% per year since 2009.

. . .

As a child and adolescent psychologist myself, the inevitable conclusion is both embarrassing and heartbreaking. The destructive forces of psychology deployed by the tech industry are making a greater impact on kids than the positive uses of psychology by mental health providers and child advocates. Put plainly, the science of psychology is hurting kids more than helping them.

. . .

Having children of their own can change tech execs’ perspective. Tony Fadell, formerly at Apple, is considered the father of the iPad and also of much of the iPhone. He is also the founder and current CEO of Nest. “A lot of the designers and coders who were in their 20s when we were creating these things didn’t have kids. Now they have kids,” Fadell remarks, while speaking at the Design Museum in London. “And they see what’s going on, and they say, ‘Wait a second.’ And they start to rethink their design decisions.”

There's more at the link.

That's some seriously scary stuff, right there.  I'm forced to wonder:  if an enemy were to design a weapon to undermine, demoralize and fragment US society, destroying its internal cohesiveness, could he have done much better than the smartphone?

These concerns are precisely why I don't use my smartphone to anything like its full potential, because even though we're no longer children or teenagers, I've seen too many of my adult friends become slaves to their smartphones.  I use no social media apps on mine at all, not even Blogger;  I don't use the phone as a Web browsing device except for urgent need;  and I frequently don't carry it at all, preferring to leave it at home where I'm not constantly tethered to it.  If someone needs me, they can send a text or leave a voicemail message, and I'll respond as and when I get it.  I don't have to be at others' beck and call all day, every day.  I'd regard that as extremely unhealthy . . . but then, I'm something of a dinosaur, I suppose.  I still value my privacy.


Tuesday, March 13, 2018


Received from Australian reader Snoggeramus (clickit to biggit):


NYC solves its homeless problem - by dumping it on other towns

I suppose this is one way to solve vagrancy issues . . .

It was discovered last week that [New York City] is paying a year’s rent to encourage the homeless to ditch the Big Apple’s homeless shelters for apartments upstate.

Senate Investigations Committee Chairman Terrence Murphy (R-Hudson Valley) told The Post on Sunday that he’s opening a probe and will hold a public hearing on the matter after being briefed by an infuriated state Sen. Fred Akshar, who represents the city of Binghamton and Broome County, where the homeless are being shipped by the city.

. . .

Broome County welfare officials found out about the families when they came into the Social Services office to apply for other benefits but not rental subsidies. They were told New York City had already taken care of their rent.

Alarm bells went off.

Akshar, a Republican, said it’s not just about his district.

“This could be happening in Rocehster, Buffalo, Albany, you name it,” he said.

“Bill de Blasio is putting homeless New Yorkers on buses, tossing them some rent money and sending them elsewhere . . . for someone else to take care of,” Akshar added. “The people of the Southern Tier and Broome County support and take care of their own in good times and bad. We don’t ship our struggling neighbors elsewhere for others to ‘deal with’ and call ourselves progressives.”

There's more at the link.

This is despicable.  Not only is NYC pretending to "solve" the problem by shipping it away, but they're ignoring the crime and other problems that the homeless frequently bring with them.  They're dumping all that on other communities without so much as a "by your leave", and will do nothing to pay the cost of alleviating or eliminating it from those towns.  Goes to show . . . when you're the "biggest brother" in a state run by a Big Brother government, you can get away with almost anything, at the expense of "smaller brothers".  If I were the communities in question, I'd sue NYC for every cent of additional cost imposed by this policy - plus punitive damages.

The question is, how many other big cities are doing the same thing?  And where are they sending their homeless populations?  I suspect that might make for some interesting investigative reporting . . .


The Grey Man rides again!

Friend, fellow author and supper breakfast lunch frequent meal companion Old NFO, a.k.a. Jim Curtis, has just released the latest novel, "Twilight", in his Grey Man series.

The blurb reads:

Never count an old man out, even when he's hanging up his hat!

Deputy Sheriff John Cronin is looking forward to a quiet retirement, working on the ranch, and handing it off to his granddaughter Jesse. And he's got to pass on a generation worth of investigations, but it's not as easy as handing over the case files and the keys. First, he's got to train Aaron Miller to fill his role, from the way to dress for rural juries to the finer points of stakeouts and murder investigations, Texas style.

Between the oil patch workers and the cartel's drug runners, there are plenty of loose ends for him to tie off... or terminate...

Miss D. and I had the pleasure of being part of this book's genesis, reading chapter drafts, offering suggestions (sometimes even helpful ones!), and watching it take shape.  Jim has done his usual excellent job as a raconteur.  That's what makes his style unique, IMHO:  he's not writing to a conventional editor's specifications, but rather telling a tale in verbal style, as one hears so many do here in Texas.  It's colloquial, spoken rather than written as far as style goes, and a rattling good read.  Recommended.


An anti-gunner demonstrates his prejudice and ignorance

The late President Ronald Reagan put it in a nutshell in 1964.

Never have his words been so clearly demonstrated in action as in this article in the Washington Post.

Gun violence is rooted in white supremacy. We can’t solve the first without understanding its connection to the second.

. . .

In Colonial America, gun ownership equaled power. More specifically, it meant the power to control the means of violence and use those means to suppress the voices of the disenfranchised. Throughout the 17th century, almost all the English colonies along the Eastern Seaboard passed legislation prohibiting women and slaves from owning guns and forbidding the sale of guns to native peoples. By the 18th century, gun ownership had become a defining feature of white masculinity in the English colonies and guns played an integral role in Colonial men’s public displays of that masculinity.

The public training exercises Colonial men participated in as part of their militia service were central to such displays and offered opportunities for them to participate in competitions to demonstrate their martial prowess. In many cases, guns were not only central to these demonstrations but were the prize for victory. The commander of the militia in Henrico County, Va., William Byrd, noted in his diary that he made a practice of awarding pistols to the men who won the competitions that took place on militia days. Such guns thus acted as material manifestations of a Colonial man’s physical domination of his peers, augmenting his reputation in terms of property ownership and bodily prowess.

But the main purpose of militias — North and South — during this period was to suppress slave rebellions, a constant fear of slaveholders throughout the institution’s existence. Militias’ sole responsibility in peacetime was to patrol local slave quarters for possible signs of subversion. When slave rebellions did occur, as in the 1739 Stono Rebellion in South Carolina, Colonial officials increased militia patrols for months and even years after the rebellions had been quelled.

They also usually expanded the caches of guns held in Colonial capitals. In Colonial minds, those guns were key to preventing any future slave rebellions. In fact, for many of the men who became leaders of the Colonial independence movement, the final straw that pushed them toward independence was the British military’s decision to confiscate Colonial militia stores and use them to arm refugee slaves who fled their rebel owners.

It was this culmination of their worst nightmares that the Founders had in mind when they wrote the Second Amendment. Their “right to bear arms” was the right of white men to exercise authority over black men and women by violent means if necessary, and their right to a “well regulated Militia” was the right to do so in large groups.

There's (unfortunately) more at the link.

A few simple checks would have revealed the utter fallacy of the author's argument.
  • The main purpose of firearms in colonial America was twofold.  One was to put meat on the table.  The other was to defend one's home and community against attacks by native Americans.  The pages of this country's history are filled with accounts of both activities.  Colonial and local governments continually urged their people, and frequently required them under penalty of law, to maintain personal weapons and bring them with them if they had to mobilize to defend their homes, individually and collectively.  The threat of slave risings became greater in the South as the number of slaves there increased, but that was a much later development, and was not a factor in the original thirteen colonies that formed the United States.
  • The author makes the usual mistake of conflating "the militia" with the right to keep and bear arms.  The Second Amendment's text is clear and unambiguous.  The first clause merely states that a well armed militia is necessary to the freedom, safety and security of the state - self-explanatory, in the light of the recent rebellion against Britain that had secured independence.  The second clause is not dependent on the first, and recognizes a pre-existing right to keep and bear arms.  That right is not conferred by the Constitution, but acknowledged as a natural right already in existence, just like the other rights recognized in the Bill of Rights.  Therefore, it cannot be related to slavery or any other factor.  As noted above, the Bill of Rights predates the massive expansion of slavery in the southern states - which, BTW, did not occur in northern states - and therefore cannot be argued to be a defense-against-rebellious-slaves conception.

I don't know what the author was smoking, but it was certainly powerful stuff to produce such a load of inaccurate drivel!