Saturday, November 13, 2004


Was thinking about some things I saw over at Heterodoxy & Orthodoxy, brought something to mind.

All of the various stuff from Democrat commentators and leftist news weenies about 'you know, some of these religeous types actually believe this stuff' brought it up.

When someone does not themselves have any religeous beliefs, or when those they claim are just window-dressing, how do you discuss this with them? How do you explain an idea to someone who, down inside does not believe that anyone could take it seriously?

It's like talking to someone who simply cannot believe that a 'civilized' human could actually believe in a right to arms. There is simply no frame of reference they can place it in except "deluded fool who doesn't know what's good for him", so that's how they treat you.

So much of the commentary on moral and religeous beliefs from the above-noted is on the level of "talk nice to them and say you will respect them in the morning, and they'll see how smart and progressive you are and vote for you", and it is stupid. You do not get through to someone on any meaningful level with condescension; you just piss them off on one level, and make them pity you on another. (those more generous in outlook will feel pity or sorrow; everyone else will just get more pissed off at you).

The other part is the commentary on the lines that "Your beliefs are just being used, you are being fooled," and so forth; often from someone with no real religeous beliefs themselves. Or, from those who do have true beliefs, "MY religeon does not allow starting a war on lies", etc. There, it's down to "If you believed properly, you would not have voted for that man!"

It's the attitude that "You're not smart enough/sophisticated enough/caring enough to really understand" again.

And that won't get you anywhere.

Does anyone else want to see Steve Irwin chomped?

SERIOUSLY chomped?

First time I ever saw this boob, he was in Arizona chasing rattlesnakes. After about ten minutes I asked if anyone else was hoping one of the snakes would get him, and my dad and son both said yes. My opinion hasn't changed.

He's generally annoying, and after seeing the shots of him feeding the crocodile while holding the baby, I was willing to speed up the process by shooting him and then throwing him to the lizard.

Closely following him is Jeff Corwin. The actual critter stuff he does is pretty good, but then he either breaks into enviro-weenie-level lectures, or trying to do comedy with some beast for background.

Where's the serious man-eater-type beasts when you need them?

Oh, this is wonderful!

Found a place called 'Orthodox & Heterodox' with a lovely little 'Red State/Blue State piece. Go thou, and enjoy.

Link found at Instapundit

Guards and grips and pommels

Guards on using knives have almost always been simple; flat cross-section, rounded ends that may have a bit of forward or back bend, no bigger than necessary. And many did not have a guard at all.
Grips were bone, wood or antler, either riveted to a flat tang, or with a hole bored or burned through to fit a narrow tang.
Many did not have a pommel, a piece that fits onto the back of the grip. Those that did, again they were generally simple, a round or flat piece the end of the tang fit into.

As you moved up the economic scale, of course, things got fancier. Guards of much more elaborate design and materials- bronze and brass and silver and gold instead of iron and copper- with carved or wire-wrapped grips, pommels of many different designs.

I've always liked antler and wood best. Antler has a texture just as it is, you just have to find a piece that fits the piece you're making. A good piece of many woods have a grain that can be breathtaking, though some are so soft they may not hold up well(cedar, for instance). I've never used ivory; too expensive. Horn can be lovely stuff. Hard, pretty much weatherproof, it can be carved and inlaid and polished.
Note about horn: when polished, glues don't hold very well. Not even epoxy. You have to rough up the glueing surfaces if you want it to hold.

I'm going to figure out how to post pictures on this, will have some examples then.

Friday, November 12, 2004

National Ammo Week Starts Tomorrow!

National Ammo Week is nice and simple; buy at least 100 rounds of ammo. .22's, centerfire, rifle or shotgun, whatever.

It keeps, it's good for holiday gifts, and you'll irritate the right people by getting it.

Let's see, Academy here has Federal Lightning .22's for $6.95/brick right now...

What is sexy about looking like a concentration camp victim?

A the store the other day, some magazine had a picture of Renee Zellweger, having lost the weight she put on for the 'Bridget Jones' movie. I'd been hearing commercials for the program she followed, the 'you can look just like her!' stuff, but after seeing the pictures, I wondered why the HELL you would want to?

Dammit, she looks like hell. Skinny arms, face with the skull showing through. This is NOT what a woman is supposed to look like.

I have seen women who were lean almost to the point of skinny, and looked great. I've see women who were, by most definitions, fat, and looked great. I have not, despite the beliefs of Hollywood and the fashion industry, seen a women with stick-legs and arms and a ribcage like a xylophone who looked like anything but a victim. Of themselves or some idiot who told them that was great, but a victim.

I've a friend who used to spend all her spare time worrying about losing 'that last five pounds'. She looked good, she was healthy, but if you told her that you heard the litany of "I'm fat, I need to lose that last five pounds, I'm flabby", etc. And since she was at a good weight, and was overall healthy, she couldn't lose it. So she started taking diet pills. That worked really well.

The rebound from that mess was a collection of problems and putting on a lot of weight. So now she's depressed about that, and the medication she's on causes her to sleep a lot so she doesn't exercise, and if she did lose weight she'd get to a nice size and obsess about the 'last five' goddamned pounds again...

THERE IS NO UNIVERSAL GOOD WEIGHT/APPEARANCE. For women or men. Be healthy, understand that the people the entertainment industry keep shoving in our faces aren't the ONLY way to look, and be happy.

By the way, the Body Mass Index sucks. If I weighed what that says I should, I would look like I'd escaped from a camp before things got too bad.

And ladies? I've never personally met a man who, in real life, preferred a female who looks like she'd break if you touched her to one with curves. Not implants, curves on her body.

The magma-risin' boogie in WA

According to this article, Mt. Ranier is showing signs of doing something. This is a good news/bad news thing; while the thought of possibly two volcanos making the landscape dance in one area delights me, it would truly, truly suck for a lot of people if Ranier cuts loose.

From what I've read, the big threat with it isn't considered to be explosive eruption, it's lahars- mudflows. The top of the mountain has been slowly rotting into clay over the years due to sulphur dioxide leaking to the surface, mixing with water to form sulphuric acid, and soaking into the rock. I don't have the book handy, but the Osceola mudflow /name?/ some hundreds of years ago traveled for many miles from the mountain and left deposits many feet deep; deep enough to fill in rolling hills and make a plain. And since such a flow, and landslides, can travel more than 100 mph... I forget how many towns/cities are in the risk area, but it includes a lot of people. And since there might be little or no warning of the actual event, this could truly be an "Oh S**t " moment as you look out the window.

An amazing thing, but definately one to see from a distance.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

How not to manage a crime problem

The British are now wanting to ban 'assault knives', among other things, in response to rising crime rates. I guess since restricting/banning firearms has worked so well, huh?

Guys, it's not a knife problem, it's a criminal problem. This article presents all the usual stuff; greater police 'random stop and search' powers, restricting sales of 'non-household' knives, etc. It also has this: "photographs of makeshift weapons, including scissor blades taped to a broom handle, to demonstrate the extent of the problem.". Which points out the problem, but not in the way they think it does.

I can take a piece of metal, a hacksaw, a vise and a file and turn out a working knife in a few minutes. People in prisons do it all the time with less. The problem is not the object, it is the people using them. Same with firearms; an honest citazen with an automatic weapon is not a threat, a criminal with a zip gun is. And all the laws in the world won't change that.

And as long as they keep thinking that adding more laws will solve the problem, the problem will continue to get worse.

Liberal condescension

"You know what? Just let me make one point. You were talking about the map before. If indeed all those blue states all got together and seceded from the union, think what would be left for those red states, nothing. There would be no educational system. You would have nothing. What would be left to you? I mean, where is all of this talent in this country? It's on both sides, the Northeast corridor." -Geraldine Ferraro to Sean Hannity on Hannity and Colmes, November 6.

Oh, yeah, no talent, no working brains, no schools, no manufacturing, no nothing except around the Northeast Corridor. Can you belive this crap? This is one of the the most blatant examples imaginable of how the 'liberal' upper reaches of the Democrat party view the rest of the country. And they wonder why they're losing voters?

Just think about that nonsense. She apparently thinks that if half-a-dozen states went away, the whole rest of the country would fall apart. Apparently all the local schools, all the community colleges, all the universities, all the businesses, all the everything would just collapse. This woman, and those who think like her, have a massive disconnect from reality.

And she might have been vice-president? Thank God people saw her for what she is.

Found at Acidman's place

Veteran's Day

We've got people at the sharp end fighting the bad guys- and winning- while flags fly over the graves of those who died doing it, or after years of physical or mental handicaps from the terrible doings of battle.

If you're religeous, say a prayer for those out there now, and for the repose of those who died. If you're not, give due respect and honor to them.

I had two great-uncles who went through WWII, one in the Navy as a diver in the Pacific, the other in 3rd Army Infantry, from somewhere in France through to the end. The Navy uncle died a year ago, the Army uncle was recently treated for cancer and seems to be doing well. In all the times I was around them over the years, I never heard either of them speak of those days, with two exceptions.
The Navy uncle, when Clinton was making noises about invading Iraq and looking stunned when people he expected to support him asked hard questions, talked a little bit about his tour of Pacific vacation spots like Iwo Jima and Tarawa and about dead Marines in the water and on the beaches.
The Army uncle spoke a bit about a couple of souvineers he has hanging on the wall; nothing about the fighting, just some bits about those things. They went to do a dirty job, survived, and as much as possible put it behind them while building their lives here.

To those who made it back and to those who did not, and to those out there now, thank you.

Note: I think it fitting in a way that Yassir Arafat, that murderous dirtbag, finally and officially kicked the bucket today. As someone wrote, I'll pray for his soul with all the honest fervor of a French diplomat.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

More on books

One of the versitile authors is John Maddox Roberts. He's done sci-fi and historical fiction and fantasy, and does all pretty well. I think my favorites are the 'SPQR' books. Mysteries set in ancient Rome, and he must have done boatloads of research, his people, places and things all ring true. There are eight of them now, I believe, with another coming out soon. And I now have all of them, he he he.

I wrote earlier about other authors I like, one I don't much care for is L. Sprague de Camp. Not a bad writer, but two things prejudiced me against him. One, he's the guy who 'edited', rewrote in some cases, Robert E. Howard's Conan stories. And two, in a collection of short stories called 'Rivers of Time'- about a man leading hunting trips into the past- he wrote enough bullcrap about firearms that it fairly permanently ticked me off. So there.


Having been inspired by Steve, I have done a bit of cooking the last couple of days, beyond my usual efforts. The first produced leftovers, the second some more, so I also have lunch tomorrow.

Yesterday, browned a pound of Jimmy Dean Italian Sausage. While that cooked, I dumped two bottles of Wal-Mart green pepper & mushroom spaghetti sauce in a pan and added some garlic and a couple of bits of other stuff. Yes, Wal-Mart sauce. I'm che-, uh, fiscally responsible, as I once mentioned. Also, it's easier than making sauce from scratch; I wasn't quite that inspired. Drained and added the sausage to the sauce and made pasta, and it was good.

Tonight I put some olive oil in a pan, sauteed a little garlic, then browned two chicken breasts in it, then added some of the sauce and simmered. While that was going heated up the leftover pasta and the rest of the sauce. When the chicken was done, put some pasta on a plate, then a breast, sauce, some chopped green onion and sprinkled with mozzarella. Not bad.

And there's enough pasta and sauce for lunch at work tomorrow. I need to do stuff like this more often.

It's November, for God's sake, what's with the tornados?

Let's see, mid-November and we're under a severe thunderstorm watch for another couple of hours, and there was a tornado this afternoon a few miles east of here.

The high tomorrow is supposed to be 45.

Have I ever mentioned the weather can be schizophrenic around here?

Self-defense in Britain, continued

There is a movement in Britain to change their law to allow citazens to use whatever force necessary to protect themselves and their families from intruders. The forces of Law and Government are having conniptions at the thought, but people aren't backing off. Smallest Minority has hookups into two articles from the Sunday Telegraph, here and here, as they keep the noise up. And they'll have to. Any government, any agency, that has taken a power, a right, away from the citazen is generally loathe to give it up; it means they lose power and control over people. And as bad as things have been there, it'll take lots of kicking and screaming to get their government to even pretend to do something about it..

Warning: the second article has pictures of two old ladies who were beaten by burglars, and they're ugly. That there are two-legged things out there that would do this is all the reason needed to change that law. And why we need to make sure that the gun-grabbers and social-controllers in our government don't get to do the same things to us.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

It's not sci-fi anymore

Belmont Club has a post on the current fighting in Fallujah
The description of a bunch of the stuff our guys are using reads like stuff out of both old and new sci-fi books. GPS and laser-guided artillery rounds as well as bombs, munitions to blow a hole in a wall so you don't have to use doors or windows to move through, each man with a radio that works hands-free so people and units are in constant communications, drones that allow instant feedback on the effect of an air or artillery strike... Give it a while for someone to bring out the prototype Armored Combat Suit and we're in Heinlein's worlds.

Think about this: infantry and armor with rifles, machine guns and cannon push the enemy back and force them to concentrate in one area, and they become artillery targets. Only instead of a mass of fire to blanket an area, one or two guided shells fall right on top of them.
They can't just duck around a corner from one unit and be gone, because that unit is talking to the others so everyone knows where the bad guys are going. If they concentrate in a small building, not worth heavy artillery, rockets or heavy machine guns take the building- and the bad guys- apart; it's quite a few years old now, but the Browning Heavy Machine Gun, .50 caliber, can still take a building apart, and anti-armor rockets will blow through a wall quite nicely.
And around the edges, the light infantry units and sniper teams are waiting, so the bad guys have Marines on one side, the Black Watch on the other, and death in the middle. They are screwed.

I once read that what slaughtered the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese regulars in the Tet Offensive was that they came out to fight in a manner U.S . forces had trained for for years; and this allowed artillery and air strikes to be used to fullest effect. What's happening now in Fallujah is the evolution of that. The Marines have trained for years for this kind of combat, weapon systems and communications systems that were ideas a few years ago are operational tools now, and the enemy has no place to hide.

Monday, November 08, 2004

General goings on

It was nearly 70 today, supposed to be 65 tomorrow and Wednesday, and then the bottom drops out with a front coming through. So today was partly yardwork. Finish mowing, run the weedeater, and finish a carport repair. The carport is double-wide, very nice, but it leaks. At some point in the past part of the span between the supports started sagging. That let water pool, which made it sag worse, which sprung the seam between panels, so water builds up there and leaks through the seam- badly, in heavy rain.
So during the summer I got some long angle-iron, and some guttering. Cut to length and bend tabs on the ends of the angle-iron, drill and bolt to the supports, making sure there's a little bit of tilt toward the low side (I'm on a hill). Then, along the center, drilled holes through the bottom of the channels in the panels. Then mount the guttering to the angle-iron under the holes, and put a drain at the low end. Now the rain drains through the holes, into the gutter and out the low end, much better. But I didn't get the gutter hooked into the downspouts 'till today. Now, it's done.

There's a shop called Outdoor America that's having an inventory-reduction sale, so ran by there. Among other things, Streamlight flashlights 20% off. Hot damn! Their 'low-end' model G2 thus became more affordable, and is now on my shelf. As the Geek said, don't look into it! (no, I didn't. I just waved it into the edge of my vision, thank you very much).

By the way, how do you tell if the person next to you is an alien or human? Give them a flashlight; if they're human, they'll shine it in your eyes. Every damn time.

How to work up a new handload:
1. check your manual and find it doesn't list that bullet.
2. check your friend's manual, it doesn't list the powders you have.
3. spend a while on the net looking for something.
4. find something, and decide if the info is not going to turn your pistol into shrapnel.
5. Set up to load a few rounds.
6. get the cat off the table.
7. start loading
8. get the cat off the table.
9. finish and put the stuff away
10. get the cat off your chair. Furry little bugger.

Went to the range with a friend a couple of days ago, and I'm looking at the targets. We were, among other things, testing a couple of Martini target rifles with different ammo. Only problem is, they don't shoot badly with anything we tried. Mostly just a case of 'which is better?'. I just love problems like that. So easy to deal with.

I think I'm going to have some of my dad's home brew and relax now.

Dipsticks in England

Raging Dave at Four Right Wing Wackos has a piece dealing with the ravings of one of the 'reality-based' people in England, name of Paul Routledge. He posts some of the article, and takes it apart.

The line from 'Quigley Down Under' comes to mind. "Well, lieutenant, we got rid of all our malcontents." /spit/ "We sent 'em back to England."

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Law enforcement & private citazens

Gun Watch in Australia had a letter a while back from a sheriff's deputy in southern California that's a pretty bad picture of the attitude a lot of law enforcement officers have toward anyone not a member of the group.

A while further back, this post at Armed Females of America detailed the attitude of- especially- a lot of big-city cops as well.

This fits in with the increasing militarization of many law enforcement agencies. They act more and more like soldiers at war, less and less like cops on a beat. And in many cases seem to develop a less and less tolerant attitude toward the peasants- excuse me, plain citazens they deal with. They also tend to refer to people as 'civilians'. Now, if I'm not mistaken, a 'civilian' is someone who isn't serving, or has not served in the military. Tells something else about attitudes.

I said before, most cops are honest people working a job most of us would not want to do. But more and more are getting the attitude that anyone not in uniform is the enemy, or at least beneath consideration. And that's not good.

It also leads to more of the attitude that 'you should not do anything for yourself, you call us and let the official people take care of it'. Which in some areas is leading to the attitude in Britain; peasants should not act in self-defense, that's the job of the State, and if we're too late to save you, too bad.

And that's bad, too.