Saturday, October 14, 2006

ATF is apparently not only in the hotseat,

but the burner's been turned up. Looking over at Uncle's place I found this, which has links to a lot of other things. Including this:The Justice Inspector General has issued the report (pdf) on fiscal misconduct by former ATFE director Carl Truscott.

Lots going on. And another reason not to want Speaker of the House Pelosi, 'cause I guarantee her and Schumer & Co. will do anything they can to keep ATF from being whacked on.

Thoughts on the Boiling Kettle

That being the title of a post Kim did a few days ago. Key excerpt:
I have it on reasonably good authority, from two independent sources, that there are huge amounts of WWII-era weaponry hidden in barns, buried underground and stuck behind house walls—and let me tell you, the “owners” are not part of the extreme Left, either.

I’ll bet you short odds that as the Muslim intifada grows, there are also a lot of quiet conversations going on around France, with many shrugs, incomplete sentences and nods of agreement.

That reminded me of something I read a few years back in one of the Matt Helm novels by Donald Hamilton. Took a bit to find the right book for the passage in The Terminators:
"Well, the ones who decided to stay, they went down into the cellars, back into the barns, up into the attics; and they found the oilskin-wrapped packages they'd hidden away all those years ago when the stupid government told the resistance people to turn in their arms like good little boys and girls- hell, they'd fought the invaders with hoes and pitchforks once; they'd learned their lesson the hard way. Government or no government, they weren't going to be caught unarmed again, not ever. So they unwrapped the potective oilskin or plastic, and they wiped off the preservative grease, and they loaded up the magazines and rammed them home, click. Then they took a hike up the road and said, here we are, Sigmund, where's you cottonpicking trouble?"

It might be amazing to know just how much stuff was hidden away over the years by people who'd fought the Germans and then the Soviets; stuff put away for the day it might be needed because they knew that, whatever the idiots in government said, when it came down to it it could well be them and a gun against the invaders again.

And I guarantee the conversations Kim refers to are taking place in a bunch of countries, and some of those people are, very quietly, taking things out and inspecting them, making sure they're ready, just in case. And every time a bunch of muslim fanatics riot and burn and kill, 'just in case' moves a little closer.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Been reading about the death of Brtish reporter

Terry Lloyd, current article here. You'll notice the headline is US 'unlawfully killed' ITN jornalist. Read on a bit and you have "Mr Lloyd was shot in the back after his vehicle - clearly marked "Press" - was caught up in US and Iraqi crossfire, then shot in the head by American forces as he was taken away in a minibus for medical treatment. " Sounds bad, doesn't it? Especially that 'shot in the head' while being 'taken...for medical treatment', almost like he was executed.

Well, I checked back through the other articles linked at the bottom of this one, and find the following:
There was speculation that US troops may have unintentionally shot Mr Lloyd and two members of his team. 04/10/2006

A British soldier said yesterday that he saw the car of the ITN journalist Terry Lloyd burst into flames after being fired on by an American tank during the invasion of Iraq.

The soldier, understood to be a member of the special forces who was carrying out surveillance, said he thought the tank "engaged" first on a convoy which included the reporter's car and an Iraqi pick-up truck with a gun mounted on the top.

He said he saw an exchange of fire between the Iraqi pick-up truck and an American tank for about 30 seconds before the pick-up truck burst into flames. "Vehicle One [Mr Lloyd's vehicle] also ignited and went off to the side of the road to its right and came to rest on the side of a field, burning."
Earlier Nick Walshe, an ITN journalist asked by his company to investigate how Mr Lloyd died, said he had spoken to Iraqi witnesses who said Mr Lloyd had been shot in the head by American forces as he was being evacuated from the firefight.

One "very credible" witness, who said he had driven the minibus which took Mr Lloyd to hospital, said he had picked him up after he had been shot in the shoulder and had his arm broken.

Before he could get to hospital the makeshift ambulance came under fire from American soldiers and Mr Lloyd was shot in the head.

So at this point you've got a reporter who, from the sound of it, was hit while a tank was engaging an enemy vehicle "with a gun mounted on the top", then the minivan somebody had him in came under fire. Do take note of the wording, the nasty American troops shooting him in the head as he was being evacuated.

Then, in an article on 11/10 you get this:
Terry Lloyd, the ITN journalist killed as he reported on the invasion of Iraq in 2003, was deliberately shot by American forces, a solicitor for his family told an inquest yesterday.

The verdict on his death should be unlawful killing, said Anthony Hudson.

Mr Hudson told Andrew Walker, the assistant deputy Oxfordshire coroner, that he could be "satisfied" on the evidence that whoever opened fire on Mr Lloyd did so with the intention of "killing him or causing serious injury".

He said that American forces were willing to open fire on civilians and were not prevented from doing so by their commanders.
Got to have that part about us shooting civilians left & right, now don't we? That's followed with: Witnesses said Mr Lloyd died when the American bullet hit him in the head as he was being driven away in a Red Cross ambulance. Earlier it was just a 'minivan', now it's a Red Cross Ambulance being fired on by the evil American troops. Hmmm... But in the current article, it's just a minivan again.

And just to finish things off we have Speaking after the inquest, Mr Lloyd's family described his death as a "despicable and deliberate" act carried out by "trigger happy cowboys".

In a statement read by solicitor Louis Charalambous, the reporter's widow, Lynn, said: "This was a very serious war crime."

She said the soldiers involved should be brought to trial "under the Geneva Convention" for murder.

Mr Lloyd's daughter Chelsey said: "The killing of my father would seem to amount to murder, which is deeply shocking."

One thing in the 4/10 article that bears on all this is that Lloyd and his team were not "embedded" with British or American military units, but were independent "unilaterals". and "The military did not wish to take any responsibility for unilaterals, to such an extent that in a sense they wouldn't even recognise their existence. In my experience the British and the American military do not want unilateral teams operating full stop."
Ok, first thing, I don't doubt that there are various people who don't like the idea of reporters not having their work scanned(censored) before being released, but guess what? The military DOES NOT have any responsibility for reporters who go out on their own. They get in trouble and call for help, I don't doubt they'll get it; but the military- ANY military- has no responsibility for their safety

Second, I don't have enough facts about some things; how far apart were the convoy and tank when this started, what angles, etc? You can have PRESS in big glowing letters on the side, but if someone is seeing the vehicle from the front or rear or quartering, with other vehicles and dust flying, they may not be able to see it. And if you're travelling with an openly armed enemy vehicle, you're an idiot if you don't know that you're taking a big chance.

Third, we've got two different stories about what vehicle he was being evacuated in, either a minivan or Red Cross ambulance. And in either case, I doubt someone opened up on it 'just because'.

And last, we have the general condemnation of the "trigger happy cowboys"(you'd think they'd get tired of parroting that and call them 'gangsters' or something just for variety) and the 'deliberate' murder of civilians, etc.

I have no idea of the political views of the deceased and his family; I have strong guesses about some of the other people involved. I do know this is a beautiful example of why it's a good thing we didn't sign onto the 'International Criminal Court': it would be mailing subpoenas and demands to everyone in sight and over the horizon to try every U.S. troop within fifty miles of this incident.

Cut through all the BS and you have a reporter who was
Travelling with the enemy, and being 'unilateral' I'd bet nobody knew where he was,
Got caught in shot up in a firefight,
And killed when the vehicle he was being evacuated in was shot up, supposedly by U.S. troops.
There's too many questions unanswered in these articles for any hard & fast conclusion. Except that there's a bunch of people who will take any incident and word it to show the 'eeeeeville trigger-happy American cowboys' will shoot up anything and anybody in sight just because they feel like it. I offer my condolences to his family, no strings or conditions; losing a family member is always hard.

But I think they and his death is being used for political purposes.

Other things heard about boot camp

Guys from Wisconsin and Main and Ohio, shipped to southwest OK in August, have certain problems with the climate. Like collapsing from heat. Takes a bit to get used to it.

Rifle range at 112F plus sudden thunderstorm equals soaked uniform, armor and weapon and, since the temp never dropped below 112, absolute freakin' misery for the next few hours.

Comment from one of the guys from Wisconsin: "You've got tarantulas and scorpions and all kinds of critters I never saw before!"

Mice who hide in somebody's ruck in the field and jump out in the barracks have a short life span.

People who've never camped find their first experience in southwest OK to be less than wonderful. Even without the DI there's the ticks, and mosquitos, and lizards and snakes and bats and coyotes, etc.

People from the more southern states do NOT expect what the weather can do here. Like going from lows in the 70's to, within 48 hours, highs in the 70's. And back to lows in the 70's, highs in the 90's. In September.

He started AIT the other day, as in first classes in his MOS, so on it goes.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Oooh, new stuff!

In one of those 'looked here and found a link to somewhere that had a link to here' I found myself at the Cynical Libertarian, looking at(among other things) a ironwood stock setup to make a Ruger 10/22 look like a Steyr AUG. Way to annoy GFWs and use nice wood at the same time.

He also shows a really neat accessory stock for a Marlin lever-action here; that's a really interesting idea.

AND he's another flashlight nutcaseenthusiast. Give him a look.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Place you ought to take a look at

This gentleman left a couple of comments, and I looked over at his site. Well worth the trip. Go see Panday's work.


testing Blogger

Well, Arizona, what'cha gonna do

about this crap?
Some of the commissioners actually wanted to add 19 more characters to represent the deaths of the 19 terrorist murderers who killed the victims.

The commissioner interviewed, Paul Eppinger, defends it wholeheartedly, claiming that the inscription about "Middle East Violence Causes Attacks" reflects the "fact" that "our foreign policy for years has focused on total support of Israel."

These clowns need a serious whack with a cluebat. And removal from office.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

We're told the Taxpayer's Bill of Rights is Bad For The Children

Of course it is. After all, a 'child advocate and attorney' says so.

If Oklahoma puts a so-called Taxpayers Bill of Rights into effect, a Colorado child advocate and attorney, warns of dire consequences.

And how does she know this? Gephardt says when Colorado put a Taxpayer's Bill of Rights into effect, children, disabled people and the elderly bore the brunt. Followed by "She says" twice. With The net effect, according to Gephardt, was a major increase in disease, pregnancy and alcohol abuse among young people.

So there you have it. You want a taxpayer's bill of rights? YOU DON'T CARE ABOUT THE CHILDREN, you bastard. OR the elderly and disabled.

You'll notice she didn't give specific numbers, no study, no nothing. But she tells us so, so it must be, right?

These people are so full of crap I should have one standing in the garden for a month in the spring as fertilizer.

By the way, the History Channel has idiots writing for it

Commie idiots.

At least just idiots. They had a little blurb on last night about the 'anniversary' of castro buttmonkey Che getting whacked. Did you know he believed 'only revolution would help the disparity between rich and poor'?(I'm going by memory here and it pissed me off; I don't swear to the exact words). And that he 'joined political movements in Africa and Latin America'? And was killed by a 'CIA-backed Bolivian operation that executed him'?

Not one goddam word about he murders he committed. Not one hint of the evil this man did. Oh, no, just nice words about wanting to help the poor with a backdrop of pictures of poor campesinos and Che doing good works.

Do these idiots actually give a crap about any of this? Are they ignorant of what they're writing about, or so bigoted they don't care?

Truck bumpers

Windy asked about mine, and it made me think about my first truck. It was a red Ford Courier, one of the first mini-trucks. Actually made by Mazda for Ford(didn't know that when I bought it), four-speed stick, little 1800cc engine. Looking back, it suffered from a number of faults(body rust, not much power, etc.) but it was the first vehicle I bought by myself. And it ran. Good weather and bad, the only real problem I had until it got old was when I got some bad gas that required the carb being cleaned out. Otherwise, one of the most reliable means of transport I've ever had.

When I got it they had two options on the rear bumper, a light stamped-steel job or a heavy welded-steel number made of stock about 1/4" thick. Dad recommended the latter, and it saved the back end of that truck three times.

1. Driving to work, stopped for someone turning into a parking lot and was rear-ended. Sheared two of the mounting bolts and bent the bumper a bit, no other damage.

2. Parked in front of the house and some idiot who hadn't bothered to clean the frost off her windshield when leaving a friends' house ran into it. Scratches, bent bumper and a couple of dents in the tailgate, her bumper and grill were pretty much smashed.

3. On my way to work one snowy night, came to a stop and some idiot slid right into me. Broke a mounting tab and sheared two bolts, bent the bumper(again). His radiator was blowing steam like St. Helens and his grill smashed.

In all that had to straighten that bumper and repaint it a couple of times, but it kept the back end from being smashed up. Best $50 I ever spent.

Monday, October 09, 2006

A few other things found in The Telegraph

First off, the 'ID card scheme' being set up in Britain. The cost of issuing biometric ID cards and running the data base that underpins the system will be £5.4bn over the next 10 years, the Home Office has said.

But the forecast, which includes start up and running costs, was immediately denounced as an underestimate by opponents of ID cards. Academics have already predicted that the cost of the scheme could rise to almost £20bn.

I think it's a rule in something like this that if the government predicts 5.4, you'll be damn lucky if it's only five times that.

Moving on, they note problems in France: Muslims are waging civil war against us, claims police union.

And get this: As the interior ministry said that nearly 2,500 officers had been wounded this year, a police union declared that its members were "in a state of civil war" with Muslims in the most depressed "banlieue" estates which are heavily populated by unemployed youths of north African origin.
He said yesterday: "We are in a state of civil war, orchestrated by radical Islamists. This is not a question of urban violence any more, it is an intifada, with stones and Molotov cocktails. You no longer see two or three youths confronting police, you see whole tower blocks emptying into the streets to set their 'comrades' free when they are arrested."

Sounds like things are not well over there.

Last thing was surprising, considering how the Church of England has seemed to stand for anything except Christianity and England:
The Church of England has launched an astonishing attack on the Government's drive to turn Britain into a multi-faith society.

In a wide-ranging condemnation of policy, it says that the attempt to make minority "faith" communities more integrated has backfired, leaving society "more separated than ever before". The criticisms are made in a confidential Church document, leaked to The Sunday Telegraph, that challenges the "widespread description" of Britain as a multi-faith society and even calls for the term "multi-faith" to be reconsidered.

If it's bad enough for that bunch to write such a report, it's pretty damn bad. One of the things that happened recently? "
The leaked report follows a week of tension in which a Muslim policeman was excused armed guard duty at the Israeli embassy in London, among other things. Think about that for a minute. I ask, how long do you think a Jewish officer would be employed if he refused to stand guard at, say, the Iranian embassy? Not very damn long, I think.

And forget actual even-handed treatment:It can also be revealed that the archbishop met Miss Kelly, the Communities Secretary, last month to discuss how the Church of England could contribute. Bishops are dismayed that no Christian denomination is represented on the commission. How the hell can you have a program on faith in the country and the friggin' Church of England isn't included?

The article says this is a report written for the Church and leaked to the Telegraph, so there's always the possibility that it'll either be denied, or the Archbishop will wuss out the way he has on most things I've heard about. But at least some people there have actually recognized the problem. As to whether anything will officially be said or done, we'll see.

I'm going to have to check out this paper more often.

I wish the Brits would take a note from our Constitution

but I'm not holding my breath.

I took a look at the Telegraph and found this article, Law chief wants new constitution. To me, the most telling part is this:The United Kingdom was probably the only developed country in the world without a clear statement setting out the rights and responsibilities of the Government, Parliament and the judiciary, he said in an interview with The Daily Telegraph.

See anything missing there? Not a word about the rights of the people(Subjects of the Crown or Citazens or whatever), only 'the rights and responsibilities of the Government'. Which is why, barring a miracle, Britain is screwed.

He does point out a problem with no constitution:"At present, much of what we regard as our unwritten constitution consists of laws that can be changed by a simple Act of Parliament and conventions that may be open to dispute," he said. That's happened over and over. But how much better could it be if the big concern of the people writing a constitution is the 'rights and responsibilities of the Government'? They just write in that Parliament can change any rights of the people they bother to note, and that's that.

All's not lost, he does seem to have picked up on one of our problems:
When there was a dispute in court over whether ministers had exceeded their power, there was a "strong case for the British public knowing that the government is doing the right thing".

But he added: "We need to be wary of unwittingly transferring responsibility from democratically elected MPs to unelected judges."
It appears he's seen the crap we have with judges playing legislator, and would like to avoid that. Join the damn club. However, we also get this from another official:
Lord Falconer, the Lord Chancellor and Constitutional Affairs Secretary, came out firmly against the idea of a written constitution in Manchester last month, pointing out that it would allow judges to take decisions on matters best left to Parliament. And, of course, if you have an actual written constitution, you can't just do whatever the hell you want.

I'm not particularly religeous, but there are times I think about falling to my knees and thanking God for the wisdom and foresight of the people who wrote our Constitution. We've got real problems, no question; it would be so much worse if we were stuck with what the Brits are.