I got your "Sanctification Rod" right here:

Russian Orthodox cleric summoned to spritz computers with holy water to fight ransomware:

Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church is a powerful reactionary figure in the country's toxic political scene, which has welded a tale of thwarted imperial destiny to a thin-skinned fundamentalist theology that can't bear the slightest sign of mockery; he's blamed ISIS on secularism and Pride parades and says that marriage equality literally heralds the imminent apocalypse.

So there's a lot of context behind this photo of Kirill spraying holy water on sensitive Russian government computer systems to fight the Wcry ransomware worm [...] the real nexus of this photo is the government official with the "you've got to be kidding me" expression, who exists in a power-structure that requires solemn professions of belief in this powerful weirdo's dumb rituals.

Patriarch Daniel:

The leader of Romania's Orthodox church has been mocked for using a paint-roller dipped in holy oil to bless new TV and radio studios, it's been reported.

A church spokesman later told Adevarul that it's not the first time Patriarch Daniel had used the "sanctification rod", one of a number of tools of his trade, as it helps anoint rooms with higher walls and ceilings which would otherwise be difficult to reach.

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16 Responses:

  1. Only American media are clueless enough about Russia to take a joke tweet seriously and actually believe that the photo has anything to do with the ransomware worm.
    It's actually from the opening of a traffic safety operations center in 2013.

    The cluelessness would be funny if it weren't likely to lead to nuclear war one of these years.

    • jwz says:

      So, Iron Age Funny Hat Man was squeezing Homeopathic Sky Daddy Sweat onto computers for an entirely different magical ritual you say??

      Well that changes everything.

      • db48x says:

        You're right that it's pretty silly either way, but details are important. We should strive to get them right even when they're not central to the point we're trying to make.

        • jwz says:

          Sure. But I would have found it no less hilarious had I known that it was a different computer at which that the pretend wizard was casting spells.

          You might as well quibble about which spell he was pretending to cast.

          • db48x says:

            Also, you need to come up with a better insult. The iron age included Thales, Pythagoras, Archimedes, Aristotle, Plato, Cicero, Virgil, and many others. Would you throw them out because of their age as well?

  2. Paul Rain says:

    Always golden, coming from someone who believes in the truth of the modern McCarthyism.

    Unlike oldschool McCarthyism, this McCarthyism isn't supported by golden age US public servants Venona project evidence. It's supported by the evidence of the same shitty CIA that produces tools to impersonate supposed Russian government supported actors.

    Believable? Cui bono.

  3. Not a laser says:

    While the piece about the Russian patriarch is apparently a joke, I can absolutely confirm that the other one is not. The guy really did it, and the whole institution was really butthurt when the jokes started pouring.

    • jwz says:

      Which part was a joke? The part about a pretend wizard in a funny hat casting spells on a computer? Because as far as I can tell, that's precisely what happened in both cited cases, and that's the part I find notably hilarious.

  4. DaveL says:

    Maybe he has a part-time gig with Kaspersky.

  5. To be fair, anointing with holy oil at least doesn't increase the system's vulnerability, unlike some of the higher-tech malware "solutions".

  6. Matthew says:

    Take note also of the assistant - in yellow - trying desperately not to be visible. In yellow.

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