Saturday, August 01, 2009

So Napolitano got permission to say 'terrorist'

again, probably to take some heat off. I'm sure some True Believer in the One pointed out that to an awful lot of hicks like me calling terrorist attacks a "man-caused disasters" and calling the war an "overseas contingency operation" is friggin' stupid; the kind of thing done by people far more worried about words than actually doing things("Doing things? That's so icky!")

But we can take reassurance that she also "...acknowledged an "increased presence" of homegrown extremism and called for increased cooperation on local, state and federal levels to thwart any potential attacks.
Unspoken was whether people pissed about taxes and military veterans are still considered man-made disaster creators. But it makes a good excuse for more control over the peas- er, people.
Asked whether homegrown terror risks have become a bigger threat than those overseas, Napolitano demurred.
"You actually want me to answer that question? And let the cover slip?"
"I don't know that you can rank them one or two," she said. "Both exist; they both must be dealt with. They are both things that we are concerned about and they're both things that we want Americans to be prepared about."
That's just very reassuring, isn't it?

For those who might still have starry thoughts socialized medicine,

Some truths about the NHS:

1) If your treatment is considered "not an emergency" (by which I mean you are not gushing blood or whatever) you will go onto a very long waiting list.

2) Because of 1) the government got snappy and decided to set targets for waiting list times. Hospital managers came up with a novel solution: Secret waiting lists to get onto waiting lists. This meant they didn't have to improve care, but the governments figures improve. Everyone who matters is happy. In the NHS, patients don't matter.

3) Killer hospital acquired infections like MRSA are endemic in NHS hospitals.
And so on.

Further along, he hits on the double-bind they put you in: if a medication/treatment is deemed 'too expensive', you can- at least sometimes- pay for it yourself. BUT, if you do, anything they decide is 'related' to the condition, you have to pay for; because even though you still have to pay for NHS, you can't use it for that.

I can't find the link right now, but a few months ago there was a story from Britain about a woman with cancer who was basically told "It's not cost effective for us to pay for the medicine you need, so hurry up and die." And when she checked into paying for it herself she was told, as I recall "If you do, you get no further treatment under NHS for anything; but you still have to keep paying for it."

Yeah, having the government in complete charge of health care will be just so bloody wonderful...

I have to wonder, have any of the people just drooling at the thought of being in charge of this considered some of the fallout if it happens? Like what happens when someone is told their parent can't have treatment for 'cost-effective' reasons, or their kid can't have it, and the people involved decide to visit, with blood in their eye, the people in charge?

And I promise you, it WILL happen; if someone told you "Your child cannot receive the treatment that would save them because it's too expensive/whatever the excuse is and the board won't approve it", how would you take it?

Well, it IS a good question...

The things Theo finds to ponder...

Friday, July 31, 2009

I can't vouch for part A, but

part B sounds familiar.

Women, Men and drinks: Who they and you are

Part A: Women

Drink: Beer
Personality: Causal, low-maintenance; down to earth.
Your Approach: Challenge her to a game of pool.

Blender drinks:
Personality: Flaky, whiny, annoying; a pain in the ass.
Your Approach: Avoid her, unless you want to be her cabana boy.

Mixed drinks:
Personality: Older, more refined, high maintenance, has very picky taste; knows EXACTLY what she wants.
Your Approach: You won't have to approach her. If she's interested, she'll send YOU a drink..................

Personality: Conservative and classy; sophisticated yet giggles.
Your Approach: Tell her you love to travel and spend quiet evenings with friends.

White Zinfandel:
Personality: Easy; thinks she is classy and sophisticated, actually, she has NO clue.
Your Approach: Make her feel smarter than she is...this should be an easy target.

Personality: Likes to hang with frat-boy pals and looking to get totally drunk... and naked.
Your Approach: Easiest hit in the joint. You have been blessed. Nothing to do but wait, however, be careful not to make her mad!

No explanations required - everyone just KNOWS what happens there.

Part B: Men

Domestic Beer:
He's poor and wants to get laid.

Imported Beer:
He likes good beer and wants to get laid.

He is hoping that the wine will give him a sophisticated image to help him get laid.

He doesn't give a damn about anything but getting laid.

White Zinfandel:
He's gay

Leave the place. Now.

I once wrote about losing my appendix, and what would have happened

to me not that long ago(think ugly, messy death in most cases). I've sat at times and wondered how someone working at a pharmaceutical company feels when some asshole politician accuses them of all kinds of naughtiness ' just so you can make money'; never mind the years of time and literally God-knows-how-many man-hours of research and testing that went into creating that drug, that doesn't count when the grandstanding politician(all too often 'corrupt' and 'stupid' also fit) wants to play "I feel your pain."

Geek posted some thoughts on the matter. Here's a sample:
One of my kids has had pneumonia twice. One hundred years ago, when such a diagnosis in a child was a virtual death sentence, what would I have paid then for the bottle of pink bubble gum flavored antibiotic goo we give kids today? I'd have mortgaged the house and gone into debt, if need be. How many bottles of pink bubble gum flavored antibiotic goo had I slugged down as a kid, vanquishing one potentially fatal disease after another?

It's not just another abstract life saved from dying horribly of Stupid Shit (r)(c)(tm). It's my very concrete life saved from dying horribly of Stupid Shit. It's my wife and kids saved from dying horribly of Stupid Shit. It's the misery of any of us losing any of the others that is avoided.

No, these cures were not shat from the sky like manna. They did not come from government largess, nor did they come from some central agency responsible for the discovery and distribution of cures. Such things have been tried, and they've all failed, miserably. Not only do they not generate new cures, but they cannot even effectively distribute old ones
Read it when you can. And next time someone bitches about "Why do drugs cost less in Canada/Mexico/wherever? It's the greedy companies ripping us off!", kick them somewhere sensitive. Like in the ass, where their brain resides.

A story of a sorry excuse for a peace officer and the sorry excuses

who tried to get rid of evidence to clear him.
What they didn't know was that they'd been rear-ended by the son of a police officer who was on duty, and dad was about to get involved.

Lawless was standing at the counter of the store, at Comly Road and Roosevelt Boulevard, smiling and chatting with the clerk, when she was grabbed from behind and violently pushed back with a police officer's gun in her face.

"He hit me with his left hand, and he had his gun in his right hand," Lawless said. "He pushed his gun into the left side of my neck. It caused a scrape-type bruise on my neck."

After a chaotic struggle, Lawless was arrested and charged with assaulting the officer
Be easy to say "Is she telling the truth?" except for one thing:
...But in cases in which it's a defendant's word against a police officer's, the benefit of doubt often falls to the cop(there were multiple witnesses, but they didn't count either apparently).

Except when there's video.

Once surveillance video from the store's four security cameras was released, the case against Lawless collapsed, and disciplinary action commenced against the officer, Alberto Lopez Sr. A lawsuit against the city is likely
I should bloody hope so.

Bad enough that he did what he did; he then lied about it- repeatedly- on sworn statements and before a judge(gee, I wonder why no prosecution for perjury?) But on top of that
Then, according to the Internal Affairs report of Ruiz's statement, Officer Lopez told him to "do himself a favor and get rid of the camera tapes."
So add trying to destroy evidence. And, on my reference to the other sorry excuses for police officers,
Ruiz told investigators that Lopez mentioned erasing the tape again after other officers arrived. He said that police visited him at the store twice the next day and asked him whether he would erase the tape. He also said that they had advised him to "help the cop out and testify for the cop."
And, as to the other people in the 'Justice Department' of Philadelphia,
The District Attorney's Office reviewed the case and declined to prosecute Officer Lopez in December. Eight days later, he was reissued his weapon and returned to full duty.

But he may yet face discipline from the Police Department
Oh, wow, I'm sure he's really sweating over that.

So, in front of multiple witnesses this clown
Assaults a woman,
Knowingly, falsely charges her with a crime,
Tries to get rid of evidence,
Makes false statements under oath,
and not only is he not prosecuted, he's on full duty and 'may yet face discipline'. No wonder Philadelphia has crime problems, if their cops are assaulting people, committing perjury and trying to destroy evidence to protect each other; they don't have any time left to mess around with actually chasing crooks.

I hope Lawless sues the ass off Lopez and the Philadelphia PD, and pushes- if possible- for him to be prosecuted for his lies under oath. And how about some action against the other officers who tried to get rid of evidence?

'Only Ones', no kidding.

Thanks to Sailor Curt for pointing to this miserable display of abuse of power.

'Human Rights Watch' my ass

You might remember that this group was caught doing fundraising in Saudi Arabia a couple of weeks ago, saying the money would go to “battle . . . pro-Israel pressure groups.” And a lot of people raised hell about it.
As criticism of her remark poured in, Ms. Whitson responded by saying that the complaint against her was “fundamentally a racist one.” And Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch, declared that “We report on Israel. Its supporters fight back with lies and deception.”

The facts tell a different story. From 2006 to the present, Human Rights Watch’s reports on the Israeli-Arab conflict have been almost entirely devoted to condemning Israel, accusing it of human rights and international law violations, and demanding international investigations into its conduct. It has published some 87 criticisms of Israeli conduct against the Palestinians and Hezbollah, versus eight criticisms of Palestinian groups and four of Hezbollah for attacks on Israel. (It also published a small number of critiques of both Israel and Arab groups, and of intra-Palestinian fighting.)
In response to the rocket war and Hamas’s violent takeover of Gaza in June 2007, Israel imposed a partial blockade of Gaza. Human Rights Watch then published some 28 statements and reports on the blockade, accusing Israel in highly charged language of an array of war crimes and human rights violations. One report headline declared that Israel was “choking Gaza.” Human Rights Watch has never recognized the difference between Hamas’s campaign of murder against Israeli civilians and Israel’s attempt to defend those civilians. The unwillingness to distinguish between aggression and self-defense blots out a fundamental moral fact—that Hamas’s refusal to stop its attacks makes it culpable for both Israeli and Palestinian casualties.

Meanwhile, Egypt has also maintained a blockade on Gaza, although it is not even under attack from Hamas. Human Rights Watch has never singled out Egypt for criticism over its participation in the blockade.
In the Middle East, Human Rights Watch does not actually function as a human-rights organization. If it did, it would draw attention to the plight of Palestinians in Arab countries. In Lebanon, hundreds of thousands of Palestinians are warehoused in impoverished refugee camps and denied citizenship, civil rights, and even the right to work. This has received zero coverage from the organization.

In 2007, the Lebanese Army laid siege to the Nahr al-Bared Palestinian refugee camp for over three months, killing hundreds. Human Rights Watch produced two anemic press releases. At this very moment, Jordan is stripping its Palestinians of citizenship without the slightest protest from the organization

Pushing a big tax break for trial lawyers;

why am I not surprised?
Federal legislation that would afford trial lawyers a special tax break faces an uncertain future, says one of the chief lobbyists for the nation's trial lawyers.

The proposal would allow attorneys to deduct fees and expenses up-front for filing contingency-fee lawsuits. The proposal amounts to about a $1.6 billion tax break for plaintiffs' attorneys, estimates indicate.

"Everyone wants to do it, but the problem is there is not a tax vehicle yet," said Linda Lipsen, American Association for Justice (AAJ) Senior Vice President of Public Affairs
Let's see, lots of lawyers in Congress, trial lawyers give lots of money to politicians... what could go wrong?
"You cannot have a stand alone bill to help lawyers … so we have to tuck it into something," she said.
Translation: "We need to hide this so people don't see it until too late."
Another challenge facing the legislation is its cost, Lipsen acknowledged, noting that Congressional rules require that any tax break be paid for by new revenues.

"The problem for us, unfortunately, is there is no money," she said. "It costs a couple billion… so we're going to have to find what they call a 'pay-for' so that we can make it budget neutral and get it passed. This is going to be tough because there is no money."

Even so, she said senior congressional officials want to press forward with the legislation
Anybody have any doubts that these clowns in Congress will amazingly 'find' enough of our money to pay the trial lawyers off if they're allowed to?
And who are the "Let's do it!" clowns in Congress?
Legal Newswire notes that this tax break for ambulance chasers “has the support of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and House Ways and Means Chairman Charles Rangel, D-N.Y.,” all of whom are eager to raise taxes of non-trial-lawyers.

In fairness, we should note that not only Democrats are behind this: The free-market Washington Legal Foundation reports that Senate co-sponsors include Republicans Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Mike Crapo of Idaho and Mel Martinez of Florida, all lawyers. The chief sponsor is Pennsylvania’s Arlen Specter, another lawyer, who belongs to whichever party is convenient
A wonderful group, huh? A group which, if they all took a long dive in a shallow well, wouldn't be missed except by the people who've been buying influence with them all these years.

Ace pointed to another mess in California: Water

It's been a problem in many areas for a long time, and continuing a enviroweenie tradition lack of water is now driving farmers off their land in the name of saving a friggin' smelt.
Last December, fresh restrictions meant to protect the fish were imposed, effectively shutting down the spigots and starving the Central Valley farmers of water.

Those in Fresno County saw their monthly allotments evaporate, virtually overnight. Here's how Mr. Allen recalls it: “When it came time to get my initial water allocation in January, we were told it would be zero. In February, my heart was pounding. Zero again. March, same thing. April, zero.” By that point, most of his crop of winter wheat had already withered and died
And the enviroweenies are just so sensitive to your pain, of course, but:
“The farmers may be facing hardship, but so are the fishermen and the fish,” says Carolee Krieger, president of the California Water Impact Network, a lobby group based in Santa Barbara on the Pacific coast that fought for the restrictions.

If water pumping resumes in the Delta, more wildlife will be endangered, she argues. “The smelt is a bellwether and it's a very important marker for the health of the whole estuary.”

As for impact on humans, “it's really sad that there is unemployment, but we're all in an economic downturn,” she says, noting that stocks are so low, salmon fishing hasn't been allowed in California for nearly three years
Translation: "Screw you nasty farmers, we think the smelt is more valuable."

And among the results of "Save the smelt no matter the price",
Mendota, population 10,000, was once famous as the “cantaloupe capital of the world.” Today, it is the jobless capital of America, with an unemployment rate of 41 per cent.

And, as usual when the enviroweenies are involved(or in California, in charge),
There is also talk of short-term solutions, such as diverting water from other areas to the San Joaquin Valley or rebuilding the pumps so they don't kill the fish.

Environmental groups still maintain that's not enough, and that any form of diversion is ultimately damaging and unsustainable
Repeat: "Screw you farmers and people, we're worried about the smelt. And anything else we can claim as a reason to drive you out."

Nigerian has shotgun, needs stock, can't buy one;

so he takes care of it himself.

Nice piece of work. Now he needs a recoil pad; 12-gauge recoil on that handle... that can't be comfortable.

Safety recall on some SIG P238 pistols

Arthur, in comments on the Mosquito, pointed me to this link:
SIG SAUER, Inc. has initiated a Mandatory Safety Upgrade pertaining to our new Model P238™ pistols. We have determined that a small number of P238 pistols may have safety levers that are not manufactured to factory specifications. Under certain conditions, it may be possible for the lever not to be completely engaged in the safe position. In this condition, the gun will not fire when the trigger is pulled. However, when the safety lever is moved to the off position, the hammer may fall, with the remote possibility that the gun could fire unintentionally, thus creating a risk of injury or death.
The factory page on this matter is here with full information; if you've got one of these, make sure if yours is one of those needing the fix.

Things I did not know about Ernest

Or Jim Varney, to use his real name. In Oklahoma he did a bunch of commercials for Braum's dairy stores, and then did some movies. Ernest Scared Stupid was his Halloween movie, and the kids loved it; it was so dumb in places it was awful(deliberately), even the kids- who were little- thought so and didn't care, because it was funny as hell.

He died a few years ago. Ace posted some information about him I'd had no idea of, including
While Varney is best known as Ernest one thing that most people do not know about him is that he was a trained Shakespearean actor and classic theater remained a love of his throughout life. He did a lot of standup, appearing on The Tonight Show and was a close friend of Robin Williams from their touring days. People that knew him say that unlike the characters he played he was extremely smart with a near photographic memory. He also gave a lot of money to youth drama programs, financed a Shakespeare theater in Tennessee, and was very active with the Make-A-Wish Foundation, visiting several hundred terminally ill children as 'Ernest'. By all accounts he was a decent, humble man who was happy with the success that he eventually found.
Another one of those people you never think to dig into, and have no idea what all you don't know.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

In light of the idiocy from PayPal noted earlier,

I'll point you to the runaround Uncle had with them.
Their response is the same. I try a few more times because it’s funny:

Say Uncle: So, what’s the point of a reply form/email address if no one’s going to read it?

PayPal Monkey With Typewriter: Same exact response

Say Uncle: Whatcha wearing, sexy?

PayPal Monkey With Typewriter: Same exact response

Say Uncle: Are you retarded?

PayPal Monkey With Typewriter: Same exact response
I've heard of some real difficulties with them, but this just takes the cake.

Lots of guns do come with better sights now,

as Caleb points out, but this reminded me of something.

Friend, a while back, bought a Sig Mosquito, their .22 semi-auto pistol. The thing came with three front sights for adjusting elevation, and all were plastic; you could snap one out and snap the other in. Seemed like a cheap way to get around needing to adjust. As for the rest...

First time he took it out, it seemed that about 3-5 times out of every magazine the extractor wouldn't, which caused a jam, which caused cursing, etc. Ammo didn't matter, except that with most it wouldn't fully cycle; only one that would reliably do so was Remington Golden Bullet. So he called the customer service number and spent about 20 minutes on hold. The guy who finally answered was very polite and got him a return number and e-mailed a shipping label so he didn't have to pay shipping(very nice). Two weeks later it was back.

Now it extracted very reliably, but was even more ammo sensitive. He found that what it ran best with now was Federal 36-grain hollowpoints, BUT- only if he only loaded eight rounds in the magazine. If you loaded ten, you'd have to cycle by hand to eject the first two, and after that worked fine. Yes, he traded it off at the first opportunity and swore never to look at another one. I've heard SiG centerfire pistols are very good; apparently all their QC goes into them...

So PayPal is so anti-gun that they'll screw over Soldier's Angels

because of it:
Coincident with the Gun Blogger Rendezvous Raffle, Soldiers' Angels had also started a fund drive for other projects that same weekend. PayPal put a stop to that. Here's Patti Patton-Bader's official statement:
Online donations through PayPal are a huge part of our fundraising. They shut down our entire account-not just the raffle button—for twelve hours right in the middle of an email fundraising push. Looking at the Terms of Use, we couldn’t understand where we’d gone wrong, but we had to immediately remove the raffle so we could get back online ASAP. This just breaks our hearts because we were so excited about the tremendous fundraising impact the Gun Blogger Rendezvous raffle was already having.
(My emphasis). The "tremendous fundraising impact"? In the short time (3.5 days) the PayPal button was live, they had 42 participants and 109 tickets sold.

As noted above, we're still 43 days out from the Rendezvous. I just found out about this Wednesday. (Post is updated to keep it at the top of the blog for the moment.)

And not only did the contributions for the raffle stop coming in, ALL contributions to Soldier's Angels via PayPal were cut off for twelve hours.

Because PayPal is anti-gun.

That's it. No more PayPal. Not for buying or donating, NOTHING. They've been crapping on gun owners for years, and now this. That they'd completely cut off Soldier's Angels because of their dislike of us nasty gun owners...

To borrow a phrase, "You DO know who designed that?": Colt 1908,

also known as the Baby Browning, known in the Colt catalog as “Colt Automatic Pistol, Pocket Model, Calibre .25, Hammerless,”For the history on this little thing, go here(which is where I stole the picture from). It was designed around the cartridge(which JMB designed, too), as a 'stick it in your vest pocket/ladies muff just in case' pistol. I had a chance to shoot one last time I went to the range, and I liked it.

Take a look: the thing has a thumb AND grip safety, and being based on the 1903 an amazingly small number of parts, and even with the time it'd been around the one I handled was wonderfully fit(finish I'll get to later). And there really are sights! You just can't see them, and I include from firing position in anything except perfect light. There's a channel the length of the slide with a tiny little blade at the front and a tiny notch at the rear; why, I have no idea since even in good light if you're in a hurry you can't see the damn things. This is the classic of the pocket pistol: so small and light(for the time) you can always have it handy, and intend for up-close-&-personal self-defense. It's 4" long, 3" tall and a touch less than 3/4" thick, smaller in length & height than a Ruger LCP or KelTec P3AT, though about the same weight due to the steel frame. And the cartridge, of course.

Ah, the .25acp. What people really mean when they say mouse gun. In ball it's a 50-grain bullet- ten grains heavier than a .22lr- which is moving, in CCI Blazer(what the owner had), at a blistering 760 feet per second. Although CCI says their Gold Dot is blazing along at 900. In either case, not what you'd want to trust as your primary defense cartridge if you could get anything else; I'd assume a premium hollowpoint like the GD would expand somewhat, but still...

The thing was fun to shoot. Little recoil or noise, and it went bang every time with no malfunctions of any kind. Accuracy was about what you'd expect(from me at least) with a 'sight radius' that short; it's a good thing it points as well as it does. The biggest problem I had was getting a proper grip: the grip safety worked with no problem no matter how I held it, but if you stuck it in a pocket and grabbed, I almost always wound up with a grip that threw my shots to the left.

I have no idea what the going prices are on these, but I wouldn't mind having one; it's just so damn cute. If someone made it in .22 so ammo didn't cost so much, now THAT would be fun.

On the finish: it suffered from buffitis. Which is cause by
Finish is worn.
Somebody decides to refinish it(a worth aim, I think).
Said somebody decides to use a buffing wheel and goes to town and effs it up.
Buffing wheels are wonderful tools, when you know what you're doing and have the right wheels and compounds. If you don't, you'll screw it up; you'll round-off sharp edges, may actually sharpen rounded spots, and can damage or wipe out the markings on the slide and frame. Which is why a couple of gunsmiths use bad language when referring to these tools. I've done a lot of buffing on knifes, blades and guards and pommels; I would be very damn careful thinking about using a buffer on a gun. You need the right size, shape and material of wheels and have to know exactly what you're doing and how.

Buffing wheels come in sisal, loose-sewn cotton, stiff-sewn and/or glued cotton, and felt. And felt comes in soft, medium and hard. Any of them, used incorrectly, can screw up what you're trying to do, and do it fast. And they generate heat from the friction; early on I screwed up the heat-treatment of blades a few times and had to re-do that part of things, then polish it again. On the types and sizes, I once read of a man talking to a gentleman who worked at Colt for many years, finishing and polishing pistols; he said he had more than 30 different size, shape and consistency wheels and appropriate compounds just for revolvers.

So if you have an old one and decide to refinish it yourself, I have no problem with that; but take your time and find out exactly what do do first. There's a good chance you can do a lot of it- maybe all- by hand with wet/dry paper and appropriate backing. And if you hand it off to somebody else to do, make sure they don't consider "I'll just hit it with the buffer" to be the proper technique for everything.

Lawdog reviews the last Transformers movie,

and sums it up nicely:
No, ladies and gentlemen, the one impossibility that I simply could not wrap my mind around was that pair of white jeans.
Yup. At the end, after the long foot chase through the desert, battle all around, diving and crawling and running, with the primary hero looking like he'd been run through a badly-adjusted chipper, and Fox still had neat clothes, no visible scratches or smudges, and her damn lip gloss was still neatly applied.

I know they planned on lots of shots of her pouty lips helping bring in the teenage boys, but DAMN!, people...

I should note that he also opines on one of the idiocies of movie-making nowadays. I'll throw in, Uh, Mr. Movie Maker? On the occasions I see music videos, I DO NOT LIKE IT when you change scenes or angles every 1.5 seconds through the whole damn thing; why the hell do you think I'll like it when you do that through most of the damned movie?

A perfect illustration of why so many people just don't trust the cops

is found here; take note of this part:
They took about 30 minutes trying to figure out if there was a way that they could charge me with a crime (the discussion was recorded on the dash cam's voice recorders). Matthew read me my Miranda rights. I asked what I was being arrested for and he stated "failure to notify". There were about 5 officers and patrol cars on the scene and a couple of the other officers chimed in and said I something to the effect of "you should know better because you took the CCW training class." I guess I missed the part of the class where you are put in a felony stop situation in fear of your life by an overly aggressive officer who does not listen to a word you are saying. Keep in mind, that I was not charged with nor was I arrested for any other offense than "failure to notify".

After conferring with his lieutenant, Matthew claimed that I failed to "promptly" notify that I have a CCW permit and that I had loaded firearms stored in my vehicle. Matthew later filed a complaint stating that I failed to inform him within 51 seconds of being detained that I had a CCW permit and loaded firearms legally stored in my vehicle
This, and the crap the prosecutor pulled, and the attitude of one of the judges, is a fine illustration of why so many people consider the justice system to be badly broken, and just why, as noted in the title, so many will not trust the police. They can, and many will, do that to you just because they can. Or maybe they decide you're not being submissive enough and need to be taught a lesson. There are lots of good cops out there who won't do this kind of crap to you, but it only takes one to screw your life around.

And, as has been noted before, they can do this knowing the charge is bullshit and suffer no penalty; whereas you
are arrested, handcuffed, searched and taken to jail,
your car is searched and impounded(and it'll cost you to get it out),
you have to make bail in most cases,
and even if the higher-ups are honest and throw it out you've had to go through all the above AND have an arrest on your record. Whereas if the higher-ups are like the clowns he had to deal with, you have to hire a lawyer, go through the trial and hope the jury doesn't buy the bullshit.

How 'bout cartoons this morning?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Seems more and more true: Barack Hussein Obama is Jimmy Carter II,

who never met a dictator he didn't like.
The ousted president of Honduras reportedly asked President Obama to revoke the diplomatic visas of members of interim President Roberto Micheletti’s de facto government.

Manuel Zelaya, who was removed from office on June 28 and has now retreated to the mountains of Nicaragua to organize a “resistance,” according to the Central American News Agency, reportedly sent a letter to Obama asking him to ramp up the pressure on the interim government and calling for the “revocation of visas” to those involved in his ouster, and the freezing of bank accounts.

The Zelaya letter reportedly names officials against whom the ousted president wanted action taken, including General Romeo Vasquez Velasquez, the head of the armed forces who was fired by Zelaya on June 25 for refusing to use the military to press forward with a referendum deemed illegal by the country’s highest court.
State Department spokesman Ian Kelly confirmed at Tuesday’s news briefing that four diplomatic visas had been revoked by the U.S. Kelly did not name names, but the deputy foreign minister of Honduras’s de facto government confirmed that one of the visas belonged to Judge Jose Tomas Arita Valle, the chairman of the 16-member supreme court who signed the ruling ordering the detention of President Manuel Zelaya
Damn, isn't that nice? Obama giving orders to make Chavez' buttmonkey happy, even if it means spitting on the people of Honduras? Words from Miguel Estrada:
Yes, obviously the way to stand up for the rule of law is to punish the judge who signed the arrest warrant—before the supposed coup—by revoking his visa. Because, you know, we as a country must think it a terrible thing when judges enforce the law against the executive branch. (If only Jefferson had thought of this!) And punish the members of the country’s congress, too, while you are at it, even though no one could reasonably dispute their democratic credentials. This is the same Congress that was elected before the “coup.” This petty retaliation is as shameful as it is pointless.
This looks more and more like either A: Obama wants a marxist dictatorship in Honduras, or B: he doesn't have the integrity or humility to say "I made the wrong decision early on, Honduras obeyed their Constitution and law and we will respect that." Because, ObamaDeity knows Obama doesn't make mistakes(or admit it when he does).

And, speaking of Chavez,
Swedish-made anti-tank rocket launchers sold to Venezuela years ago were obtained by Colombia's main rebel group, and Sweden said Monday it was demanding an explanation.

Colombia said its military found the weapons in a captured rebel arms cache and that Sweden had recently confirmed they originally were sold to Venezuela's military.

The confirmation strengthens Colombian allegations that Hugo Chavez's government has aided the leftist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, and exacerbated tensions between the neighboring nations over an imminent agreement to expand the U.S. military's use of Colombian air and naval bases
No surprise; there's been solid links shown before between Chavez and this group of terrorists. And yet Obama seems to be quite fond of the bastard...

This just in: Professor Gates is half Irish,

and 75% full of shit.
In a PBS series on African-American ancestry that he hosted in 2008, Gates discovered his Irish roots when he found he was descended from an Irish immigrant and a slave girl.

He went to Trinity College in Dublin to have his DNA analyzed. There he found that he shared 10 of the 11 DNA matches with offspring of Niall of the Nine Hostages, the fourth century warlord who created one of the dominant strains of Irish genealogy because he had so many offspring.
That would make him a small part Irish, not half; and you ever notice how when something like this comes out they're never related to a cattle thief from the next kingdom over?

And, since The Obama can't possibly be outclassed by a mere professor, I wonder if we'll hear that, through his mother, he's a direct descendant of Cuchullain? Or Brian Boru? Either of whom would probably come out of his grave to disavow ANY connection with him?

Speaking of control-freak politicians,

Here’s a copy of the New Jersey Microstamping bill. It’s bad. Really bad. There’s a big distributor over in New Jersey, Sarco, that will be put out of business by this bill, as it makes it unlawful to bring any non-microstamped firearm into the state with the intent of selling it or transferring it, even if it would be to an FFL out of state. Here some other stupidity at work:

  • Revolvers? Need to have those microstamped. Can’t have criminals carrying around non-stamped casings in their wheel guns, you know.
  • No exemption for air guns, meaning air guns will have to be imprinted with the required microstamp, or will be illegal to sell or transfer in New Jersey after the date of this act.

and so on. Including
UPDATE: Just noticed there’s no exception for antique firearms either, so muzzle loaders will need to be microstamped to imprint on the non-existent casing.
The mind boggles at the level of duplicity, stupidity and power-hunger involved in this. What I'm tempted to call a 'bright spot' in this black hole of crap is
There is no exemption for police. This will apply to police departments too, since they procure either from dealers or distributors.
As I recall, New Jersey is one of the places that's been just wild about every 'smart gun'-type crap that came down the road, but always exempted the LE boys from having to worry about it. Probably out of dumbassery they either overlooked it or decided the cops wouldn't mind, so in this they would have to follow the same law as the peasants.

Brian Boru and generations of other heros are wondering

what the hell happened to Ireland?
Justice Minister Dermot Ahern has signed new gun control legislation into law.

The act bans handguns in Ireland and also introduces a requirement for referees, background medical checks and standards for the safe keeping of guns in the home for all firearms licence applicants
And what's the desperate need for this?
Mr Ahern says the legislation is designed to halt the emergence of a gun culture in Ireland.
Not 'to fight crime' or 'stop terrorism' or any of the usual excuses for disarming the peasants; no, he's an honest dirtbag, at least, to halt the emergence of a gun culture in Ireland.

Of course, there's been one for a long damn time; for many years the Irish Rifle Team held most of the long-range shooting titles in the world. Taking a scattergun or rifle out to hunt, or a weekend match, was common. But that was before the nanny-state took over and decided 'peasants should not be allowed arms, it's bad for the State'. Remember this from the previous article I posted on:
The Government has outlined its proposals for a ban on licensing handguns, which may be expanded to include all firearms in the future.
They make it plain, their ambition is to completely ban the ownership of firearms in Ireland. All for the subjects own good, of course; they can look over at England and see how well this attitude is working, can't they?

Of course, as is often pointed out, this really doesn't have a damn thing to do with crime control or safety control or whatever: it's about people control. And the stinking politicians who want as much as possible.

Oklahoma has a measure on 'English is the official state language'

coming up, probably next year, for vote. And, surprise!, the feds are bitching and threatening:
The Oklahoma congressional delegation wants U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to explain why the Justice Department got involved in a debate by the Oklahoma Legislature this year over making English the state’s official language.

The delegation sent a letter to Holder on Tuesday questioning why his Civil Rights division sent a letter to Oklahoma Attorney General Drew Edmondson in the midst of the English-only debate reminding him that state entities receiving federal funds have to observe certain laws regarding people with limited proficiency in English.

The letter, sent by all seven members of the delegation, asks Holder to explain his department’s "overreach” and explain further what funding might be in jeopardy if Oklahoma voters approve an English-only amendment next year
There've been problems for years over giving the driving test in Spanish(which is bullshit; if you can't read/understand English enough for road signs, directions and the test, no license for you); last year, as I recall, a married couple demanded to be given the test in Farsi("You give it in Spanish, so you have to give it in Farsi as well!"). For anyone except the 'PC at any cost' crowd the problems are obvious and many, so this is coming up for a vote; and now Holder the 'race cowards' speechmaker, is threatening.

Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Tulsa, said Tuesday, "I support the state’s effort to pass a constitutional amendment making English the official language of the state because it ultimately facilitates better communication across the many lines of diversity within our state.

"It is entirely unacceptable for the federal government to try to strong-arm the state by threatening to remove federal funding. I look forward to hearing the Justice Department’s explanation for such behavior,” Inhofe said
Since what this amounts to is the Feds taking money out of the state in taxes and then letting us have some of it back- with strings- my first thought would be "Tell you what, we'll just keep that money here in the first place and not beg and plead for 'federal' funds for these projects." Because an awful lot of this has turned into, bluntly, a blackmail program: "You don't do what we want, we keep your money."

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The daughter is back from New Orleans,

and had a fine time. Lots of pictures, a couple of which I've seen, the B&B she stayed at was very nice except for the big decorative posts at the foot of the bed that kept attacking her legs, and she had a lot of good food. She started a blog for the trip where she posted on the tours, and put up some of the pictures.

I'm glad she had a good time, and yeah, I'm glad she's back.

The UN in Africa

The Justice Department has some serious problems,

that've been going on for a long time. Far too damn long:
Sullivan, who just two months earlier agreed to throw out the indictment against Ted Stevens because of alleged prosecutorial misconduct, did not hold back his frustration at a hearing later that day. "I'm not pleased at all with anything I've heard from the United States government," Sullivan said. Prosecutors, the judge said, knew the witness in Mexico recanted more than a year ago but did not tell the defense until May 22.

On June 30, Ye Gon walked into Sullivan's court unshackled and wearing an orange jumpsuit with the initials of the Central Virginia Regional Jail on his back. "This is the second time in less than three months in a high profile case that the Department of Justice has come before this Court and asked it to dismiss an indictment after allegations that ... information was not timely produced to the defense," the judge said. Sullivan noted the government made its "belated disclosure" about the witnesses after Ye Gon filed a motion for sanctions

My one post on the Gates incident itself

1. The officer was dispatched and had to investigate.
2. All Gates had to do was say "Yeah, I lost my key and had to break in(though why not call the Harvard maintenance people since they would come out?) and show his ID; end of situation.
3. Gates pretty much talked himself into getting arrested because of, from the sound of it, a combination of arrogance, looking for racial insult, and stupidity.
4. He probably shouldn't have been arrested.
Mind you, the way Gates acted he'd probably have filed a complaint, contacted a reporter, etc. anyway, because if you're looking for insult in everything you're going to find it. And bitch and whine about it.

Balko has a piece at Reason on how this is symptomatic of police making arrests they shouldn't as 'contempt of cop', which does indeed happen. They also use 'Disturbing the peace' and such as the excuse to arrest someone who annoys them for some other reason; it seems to be a favorite of officers arresting someone for legal open carry("It may be legal, but I won't let you get away with it" is the attitude). Yeah, it's often dropped, but in the meantime you've been arrested, handcuffed, searched, your vehicle impounded, and the whole thing costs you time, money and difficulty, and you can't do a damn thing about it most of the time, and that's exactly why they do it.

This has been around for a long time, but I think it was used much less in the past, generally in reaction to a percieved real problem instead of "Because I don't like you/it and I can." As much as anything, it's a problem directly related to many police being of the "I am a COP" attitude as opposed to "I am a Peace Officer who remembers Peel's Principles"; one will take charge of a situation and defuse it if at all possible, the other tends to see the 'Take charge of the situation' instruction as requiring them to be an aggressive, in-the-face offensive jerk(he won't see it that way, of course).

No, the officer probably shouldn't have arrested Gates; Yes, if Gates hadn't reacted VERY badly it never would have reached that point.

Space shuttle and station in silhouette

against the sun; very cool shot.

And here's a couple of amazingly clear shots of the Jupiter impact site from the Hubble. Note this:
The image above is the sharpest yet of the Pacific Ocean–sized impact site,; think of something big enough, moving fast enough, to make a smack that size. Now think of the fact that we never knew it was coming, and if a lucky astronomer hadn't spotted the impact site we might never have known about it.

We need better watchdogs in the system.

"We were young.

And we were very, very stupid for college kids. Check that. We were stupid because we were college kids.

Many of the most committed of us, decades later, are still in college and even dumber. We're professors now and our ability to be dumb has never been deeper.

Others of us are well ensconced in the various parts of what passes for the media. We're there with a lot of others just like us and, even if we thought differently, we'd never say it for fear of losing regard, position, grants, or promotion. Besides, we've been around others who think like us for so long its no problem at all to top up the latte and nod in blind agreement.

Nope, we never sold out. We bought in. But we kept the Che poster pinned up forever in our hearts.

And now, we've arrived at our rendezvous with history
Go over and read it soon as you can. And say "Thank you, Kevin" for pointing to it.

Some of the wonders of the socialized medicine scheme

come to light:
THE health bills coming out of Congress would put the de cisions about your care in the hands of presidential appointees. They'd decide what plans cover, how much leeway your doctor will have and what seniors get under Medicare.

Yet at least two of President Obama's top health advisers should never be trusted with that power.

Start with Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, the brother of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel. He has already been appointed to two key positions: health-policy adviser at the Office of Management and Budget and a member of
Federal Council on Comparative Effectiveness Research.

Emanuel bluntly admits that the cuts will not be pain-free. "Vague promises of savings from cutting waste, enhancing prevention and wellness, installing electronic medical records and improving quality are merely 'lipstick' cost control, more for show and public relations than for true change," he wrote last year (Health Affairs Feb. 27, 2008).

Savings, he writes, will require changing how doctors think about their patients: Doctors take the Hippocratic Oath too seriously, "as an imperative to do everything for the patient regardless of the cost or effects on others" (Journal of the American Medical Association, June 18, 2008).

Yes, that's what patients want their doctors to do. But Emanuel wants doctors to look beyond the needs of their patients and consider social justice, such as whether the money could be better spent on somebody else.

Many doctors are horrified by this notion; they'll tell you that a doctor's job is to achieve social justice one patient at a time.

Emanuel, however, believes that "communitarianism" should guide decisions on who gets care. He says medical care should be reserved for the non-disabled, not given to those "who are irreversibly prevented from being or becoming participating citizens . . . An obvious example is not guaranteeing health services to patients with dementia" (Hastings Center Report, Nov.-Dec. '96).
Senator Jon Kyl was on FOX News Sunday today and admitted that the Democratic health care legislation passed in the House and currently being discussed in the US Senate will require all health care providers, including Catholic institutions, to perform abortions.
Isn't it just wonderful what all is in this bill that some congressmen think they shouldn't even have to pretend to read before they vote? No wonder Obama was so desperate to force a vote before these clowns go home on recess; he's terrified of what's going to happen when the people back home get hold of these jerks and ask what the hell they think they're doing?

Meanwhile, back in Honduras, the dictator wannabe

turns out to be getting money from unsavory sources:
Honduran authorities denounced on Monday the alleged financing by the FARC of deposed president Manuel Zelaya’s followers’ marches to the Nicaragua-Honduras border.

The article goes on to say that police seized a notebook and receipts showing that “Zelaya’s government officials and supporters, leftist leaders, farmers, union members, and at least one mayor and one governor” were paid between $2,500 to $100,000 for the “transportation of people and supplies” to the border region.

The information was gathered from a computer seized from a FARC leader. No money was seized since the funds had already been distributed.
So, the Friend of Obama, Chavez, Ortega and Castro is getting money from a terrorist group; anybody surprised?

Am I being too hard on President Obama? I don't think so; he's acted very chummy with these communist dictators, and acted- in the case of Honduras- either without knowing what he was doing, or knowingly in a manner that aided the dictator wannabe against a government acting according to law. It's possible he's just dumbass enough to have started talking without thinking, but I think it far more likely he knew just what he was doing.

Since this seems a 'bash on clowns' day, let's move to forensics

But criminal forensics has a deeper problem of basic validity. Bite marks, blood-splatter patterns, ballistics, and hair, fiber and handwriting analysis sound compelling in the courtroom, but much of the “science” behind forensic science rests on surprisingly shaky foundations. Many well-established forms of evidence are the product of highly subjective analysis by people with minimal credentials—according to the American Society of Crime Laboratory Directors, no advanced degree is required for a career in forensics. And even the most experienced and respected professionals can come to inaccurate conclusions, because the body of research behind the majority of the forensic sciences is incomplete, and the established methodologies are often inexact. “There is no scientific foundation for it,” says Arizona State University law professor Michael Saks. “As you begin to unpack it you find it’s a lot of loosey-goosey stuff.”

Not surprisingly, a movement to reform the way forensics is done in the U.S. is gaining momentum. The call for change has been fueled by some embarrassing failures, even at the highest levels of law enforcement. After the 2004 train bombings in Madrid, Spain, the FBI arrested Oregon lawyer Brandon Mayfield and kept him in jail for two weeks. His incarceration was based on a purported fingerprint match to a print found on a bag of detonators discovered near the scene of the crime. As a later investigation by the Justice Department revealed, the FBI’s fingerprint-analysis software never actually matched Mayfield to the suspect fingerprint, but produced him as an “unusually close nonmatch.” Lacking any statistical context for how rare such similarities are, investigators quickly convinced themselves that Mayfield was the prime suspect

Couple of years ago there was a case that trashed a method the FBI lab had used for many years. They had contended that if you analyzed the content of a bullet you could state with certainty that, for instance, the bullet found at a crime scene came from the box of cartridges found at a suspect's home; turned out not to be true. It seems that a batch of melted lead doesn't form a perfectly homogeneous mass; some of the alloying elements can concentrate in 'batches' in the mass, causing bullets from the same box to have slightly different analysis. A defense attorney finally had a lab actually test what the FBI was claiming, and oops!

And, on the subject of those 'ballistic fingerprints',
Ballistics has similar flaws. A subsection of tool-mark analysis, ballistics matching is predicated on the theory that when a bullet is fired, unique marks are left on the slug by the barrel of the gun. Consequently, two bullets fired from the same gun should bear the identical marks. Yet there are no accepted standards for what constitutes a match between bullets. Juries are left to trust expert witnesses. “‘I know it when I see it’ is often an acceptable response,” says Adina Schwartz, a law professor and ballistics expert with the John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
Isn't THAT just a wonderful thing to trust you life and liberty to? And screw with the 2nd Amendment for?

And here's the end of the article:
It will take years to fully reconcile the rigors of the scientific method with the needs and processes of the judicial system. But in the meantime, questionable forensic science will continue to tip the scales of justice. And when bad decisions are made in the courtroom, an innocent person’s entire life can be swept right out from under him. It happened to Steven Barnes 20 years ago. Then 23 years old, he was brought to trial for the rape and murder of a 16-year-old girl. He had never been arrested before and was confident he’d be cleared. Yet he watched as forensics expert Elaine Pagliaro testified that two hairs found in Barnes’s pickup were microscopically similar to the victim’s. Pagliaro also noted that soil samples taken from the truck were consistent with dirt from the crime scene and even that a distinctive pattern from the victim’s jeans was similar to an imprint left on the truck.

Due largely to her testimony, Barnes was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison. Last year, he was cleared by DNA and released. He’d never been on the Internet or used a cellular phone, and his girlfriend, who initially stuck by him after he went to prison, had long ago married another man. Barnes told Popular Mechanics that he works hard not to be overwhelmed by bitterness, even toward the jurors. “They must have thought, ‘[Pagliaro] knows what she is talking about.’”

Pagliaro, a veteran analyst with the Connecticut State Police, has recently co-authored a book called The Real World of a Forensic Scientist. “I think this scrutiny is actually good,” she says. “It’s important for the public to have a realistic expectation of what the science can do.” As for the Barnes case, there is no suggestion of impropriety regarding her testimony, but none of the evidence she presented was based on statistically validated science. “You feel awful someone spent all that time in jail,” she says. “All you can do is look back and say, ‘Was that the best we could do?’”

Well, Pagliaro, I'm sure it does people you wrongly put in jail a friggin' WORLD of good to know you wonder 'if that was the best you could do?' Especially any who might still be behind bars because of you.

And there are prosecutors who will fight tooth and nail against having DNA evidence tested in past cases; they tend to argue it's 'unnecessary' and 'too expensive'. Sometimes, probably because they're scared that it might prove they put the wrong man in prison and don't have the integrity to face it if that's the case.

Oh, more on 'ballistic fingerprinting' from the second article:
As with fingerprints, not enough research has been done to quantify the probability of error in ballistics matching. So it’s impossible to say with certainty that the marks made on bullets as they are fired are truly unique to an individual gun. Currently, ballistics examiners are aided by computer databases such as the ATF’s National Integrated Ballistic Information Network, but lab techs always rely on their own visual inspection to make the final call. The Association of Firearm and Tool Mark Examiners only requires an examiner to find “sufficient agreement” between bullets in order to conclude that they came from the same gun. Those judgment calls can cause false results. Last September the Detroit Police Department’s crime lab was shut down after an audit by the state of Michigan found a 10 percent error rate in ballistics identification.

Back to corrupt tax-cheat politicians,

Editorial in today's Wall Street Journal: Morality and Charlie Rangel’s Taxes: It’s Much Easier to Raise Taxes If You Don’t Pay Them:

Ever notice that those who endorse high taxes and those who actually pay them aren’t the same people? Consider the curious case of Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel, who is leading the charge for a new 5.4-percentage point income tax surcharge and recently called it “the moral thing to do.” About his own tax liability he seems less, well, fervent. ...

The House Ethics Committee is investigating Mr. Rangel on no fewer than six separate issues, including his failure to report the no-interest loan on his Punta Cana villa and his use of rent-stabilized apartments. It is also investigating...
This is, let us remember, the same 'public servant' who, when a member of the public asked him about this mess, told his boss to 'mind his own damn business'; nasty piece of work, isn't he?

And, connected with 'reforming' health care,
President Barack Obama called Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh to the Oval Office on July 17 for a one-on-one meeting about health-care reform, Democrat to Democrat.
Etc., then
But for Bayh, health care isn't just the latest high-stakes political fight in Congress. It's also a substantial part of his family's income.

As the debate over health-care reform intensifies, Bayh's wife is receiving lucrative payouts from some of the companies that could be most affected by that legislation.

Bayh contends the $2.1 million that his wife, Susan, earned from public health-care companies from 2006 to 2008 represents no conflict of interest. Questions persist, however, for at least two reasons. First, Evan Bayh has been unclear about his positions on many issues related to health-care reform. Second, there's the timing of Susan Bayh's rapid rise into corporate governance.
Adding to speculation about a connection between her board memberships and her husband's office is Susan Bayh's unwillingness to discuss the matter, including for this story. She has declined several requests for comment on her corporate interests, making it difficult to tell where those interests end
This is kind of like former Senator Tom Daschle, writing law about businesses where his wife was a lobbyist and making buttloads of money. "But they have nothing to do with each other" my ass.

A Friend of Barry with tax problems?

A foundation created and led by Henry Louis Gates Jr. is amending its federal tax form after questions were raised about $11,000 paid to foundation officers -- funds that the original tax form called research grants, but that should have been classified as compensation, ProPublica reported. When the payments are accounted for accurately, the foundation's administrative expenses will account for 40% of its spending in 2007, not 1% as originally reported to the IRS.
That's a damned big difference, isn't it?

Monday, July 27, 2009

At the range the other day, tried a couple of things

I've written before about using a flat-nose 150-grain bullet, designed for .30-30, in a number of rifles with good results. The one problem I've had is that some rifles that flat occasionally hangs up when chambering a round, so decided to try a pointed bullet. A while back I got two, both Lee: one 155-grain and one 160-grain tumble-lube, both actually for .303, 7.62x54r and 7.62x39. That very good article on cast bullets in military rifles had mentioned using both, including sizing the 155-grain to .309 or .310 for .30-06 and .308. And Midway had a sale at the time and they were actually in stock, so...

I tried the 155-grain with the 16.0 grains of 2400, sized .309" and lubed with Rooster Red, in a K31(7.5x55 Swiss) a .308 and .30-06. It shot well in all, fed with no problems(worth it for no jams alone), and gave good accuracy. One other thing: in the K31 and .308, at 100 yards, the flat-nose had hit about 4-5" to the right of point of aim(which I've heard is common in cast loads compared to jacketed bullets); with this bullet it was only 2-2.5" right.

I tried the 160-grain in a #4MkI Enfield, fed nicely, good accuracy and- again- just a touch to the right. This one was lubed with Lee Liquid Alox and sized in a Lee sizer, which barely touched the bullet but seated the gas check(both bullets were gas-checked). The Lee 185-grain bullet I tried before worked very well, I just wanted to try a lighter bullet, and this one worked well.

I tried one other thing: the gentleman mentioned that for general practice and small game he used bullets that had no gross defects but weren't quite up to spec lubed with Lee Alox without a gas check and with a light charge of fast-burning powder. I had some of the 160-grain that fit the description, so tried it out using a charge of Bullseye. At 50 yards gave about 2" groups(I think, I lost the target) with slight recoil and low noise. I need to load some more to try at 100, see how they do. For winter or just when there's no time to get to the outdoor range this would be a good practice load.

I do have to note, while the 155-grain mold works just fine, the 160-grain is a picky bastard. Finally found the trick to getting good bullets with it; temperature on the melter up a bit, and don't hold the mold more than about 3/8" below the nozzle, otherwise it either doesn't fill completely or has wrinkles. Lee molds can be picky, but this is the damndest one I've messed with.

Well, it started with a nasty-sounding storm

that moved through about 4am. I know the time because it woke me up. Which is good, because I got the windows closed before anything blew in. Thunder, high winds, pouring rain for a while. Then it rained lightly off & on ever since, finally stopping about an hour or so ago.

I mention all this because last night there was 'maybe' a 30% chance of scattered storms overnight and about a 20% chance today as I recall; that turned into this, and they upped the chances for the rest of the week, too. Again, they can't predict what it'll do twelve hours later, but we're supposed to believe climate can be predicted(and caused by man, too!) 50 and 100 years ahead. Bullcrap.

No idea on amounts; my rain gauge fell over, and the Weather Service site has a lot of 'not available' notes on rainfall, including during the heaviest part. Had to guess, I'd say about 1/2 inch total, maybe a bit more. So everything's had a good drink. And the temperature's down; high today has been about 77. Tomorrow- assuming it doesn't cloud over again- they're predicting 90, then 80's the rest of the week; nice for late July.

Blackfive has words about the President being worried about 'victory'

in Afghanistan:
WTF Over? We don't want to "win" now? Well, I have news for the President, every one of the men and women in uniform that is sweating, shooting, bleeding and dying to accomplish our mission there is looking for "victory." They know what is measurable and what isn't. And they definitely know what it looks like at the end.

Now, I know that in the COIN battle-space that it is difficult to get hard measurements for the Powerpoint Rangers to put in briefing slides, but I do know that one of the many "measurable goals" of war-fighting (thereby leading to "victory") is the surrender/capture/death of the enemy. Economic development and stabilizing the government are all legs of the stool, but the the rock solid base of the stool, the thing that "contracts the ability of Al-Qaeda to operate" is killing or capturing (although capturing now has a greatly lessened effect) the enemy. That is what makes all of the other things possible.

But our CINC, having never been at the point of anything except petitions drives and organized protests, may not understand what I am getting at...
There's more.

"...the “ineffable raison d’etre” of Valerie Jarrett, a Daley-trained politico and consigliere, is power."

Michelle Malkin brings us some history and facts on one of Obama's little dictators. Including
But not a word about Jarrett’s involvement in Michelle Obama’s patient-dumping scheme at the University of Chicago Medical Center, where Jarrett sat of the board of directors.

And not a word about Jarrett’s involvement in Grove Parc — the Chicago slum complex managed by Jarrett’s company, Habitat, Inc. To this day, Jarrett refuses to answer questions about the dilapidated housing development

And how Obama decided to 'clear' her on his 'no lobbyist/lobbying' rule. You know, the one he's violated from day one?

Makes you wonder, does Jarrett qualify as 'Natasha' to Obama's 'Fearless Leader'?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

We lost a Border Patrolman

A U.S. Border Patrol agent who was shot and killed Thursday night was responding to a potential incursion into the United States, authorities said.
Agent Robert Rosas suffered multiple gunshot wounds and died at the scene around 9 p.m. in the Campo area in San Diego County, California, said Richard Barlow of the U.S. Border Patrol.

Barlow, speaking at a Friday news conference, said authorities did not have additional details about the incident, which he said occurred near the fence that separates the U.S. and Mexico.

Other agents responded to the area and found Rosas, Barlow said
They caught three possible suspects, and the Mexicans are saying they caught four men suspected of being involved. The comment from our wonderful Homeland Security chief?
U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano says, “This act of violence will not stand.”
Well, I'll tell you what, secretary; if you had people more concerned with doing something about our borders and less worried about putting out bullcrap studies so the President's 'enemies' can be demonized as terrorists(when you don't want to use that word on actual terrorists), and a bunch of the politicians you work with were more concerned about our borders than with buying votes, MAYBE SOMETHING WOULD GET DONE.

Like an actual fence, maybe?

Mark Steyn speaks of the President's stupidly behavior

President Obama said that “there is a long history in this country of African-Americans and Latinos being stopped by law enforcement disproportionately.” But, if they’re being “disproportionately” stopped by African-American and Latino cops, does that really fall under the category of systemic racism? Short of dispatching one of those Uighur Muslims from China recently liberated from Gitmo by Obama to frolic and gambol on the beaches of Bermuda, the assembled officers were a veritable rainbow coalition. The photograph of the arrest shows a bullet-headed black cop — Sgt. Leon Lashley, I believe — standing in front of the porch while behind him a handcuffed Gates yells accusations of racism. This is the pitiful state the Bull Connors of the 21st century are reduced to, forced to take along a squad recruited from the nearest Benetton ad when they go out to whup some uppity Negro boy.

My pale visitor is back

and this time I was able to set up the tripod, so things were a bit more solid

Here he is in his natural habitat,
the dangling buffet
I did manage to catch him on the ground and get one that shows his back

I've only seen the one so far, no nestmates or anything. No word as yet from the Wildlife Department, assuming they've A: seen the message and B: care. In any case, nice to see him again.

One last thing before I go do something constructive

Male Navy officer lodges sexual harrassment complaint against female reporter.

The complaint outlines examples of Rosenberg's alleged "abusive and degrading, comments of an explicitly sexual nature."

Gordon writes:

To me, in front of another journalist with reference to why 9/11 co-defendant Mustafa Al Hawsawi was seated on a pillow in court:

"Have you ever had a red hot poker shoved up your a**? Have you ever had a broomstick shoved up your a**? Have you ever had anything in your a**? How would you know how it feels if it never happened to you? Admit it, you liked it? No wonder why you like to stay in South Beach on your Miami visits."

Rosenberg, to CNN's Jamie McIntyre in front of roughly 15 journalists in the Guantanamo Commission's press center:

To Jamie - "Aren't you in the BOQ (Bachelor Officers Quarters)? I didn't think you were in tent city because these people (military public affairs escorts) are so far up your ass that I figured you must be in the BOQ."

To Me [Gordon] - "Why isn't he in the BOQ? You're kissing his ass so much that I can't believe that you're letting him stay with the rest of us. Do you love him?"

The Commander claims that Rosenberg said to members of the press and enlisted military men and women: "Seeing him [Gordon] topless in tent city was the most repulsive sight I've ever seen in my life." Most recently, while walking to court, Gordon says that Rosenberg obstructed an AP pool photographer from taking his picture, saying "Well, I know you like to have your picture taken to show people you are actually working down here, but guess what, not today..."

Carol Rosenberg, Journalist, seems to be a first-class jackass. And the idea of her being sued, by a military officer, for this, is just so fine I need a drink.

For those of you interested in the dogs,

here's a pup update. You'll notice that both the ex & daughter's dogs have grown, Rhapsody looking at the camera hereAnd Xoco no longer looks like a bobblehead; still tiny, but more in proportion

Rust removal

Time or two I've mentioned using Blue Wonder gun cleaner to take off rust. Other day at the flea market I picked up a couple of saws, one to clean up and use, the other to turn into scrapers, and thought this would be a good tryout/demonstration of the stuff. Here's saw this morning:No, wasn't that bad when I got it. I listened to the weather for last night and left it in the back of the truck. Where that 'extremely slight chance' turned into just enough light rain to cause rust. So, dribbled a little Blue Wonder on and started scrubbing with 0000 steel wool, and a couple of minutes got this:
It stripped off all the surface rust very well. I've used it on guns a number of times, and- like the label says- used right, it won't damage bluing.

By the way, if you've not heard of it, the best thing I know of for a saw is to clean it, then give it a coat of paste wax, like Johnson's Furniture Polish; it'll protect the metal from rust, and helps the blade slide through wood.

My first thought when I saw this was

Son, was that you?
Thanks to Theo for a possible family-in-action picture

As an example of politicians who should be hanged, drawn and quartered

I give you the clowns in the British government who have decided to screw wounded soldiers since money is tight:
The government will this week launch an attempt to deny soldiers crippled in battle full compensation for their injuries.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) will go to the Court of Appeal on Tuesday to try to slash the compensation awarded to two injured soldiers by up to 70%. If the government wins, it will fuel the mounting disquiet over the relatively paltry payments some soldiers are receiving for lifelong injuries
'Mounting disquiet'? It ought to be bloody rage over crap like this:
In September 2005 Anthony Duncan, a soldier with the Light Dragoons, was on patrol in Iraq when he was shot in his left thigh. He needed 11 operations to clean and close the wound and had a pin inserted in his leg to help the bone heal.

He subsequently suffered calcification in his thigh muscle and constant pain in his leg. He struggled to walk without crutches while attempts to run left him “crippled” with pain, according to court documents.

The MoD initially gave him £9,250 in compensation, arguing that his injury was only a fracture. Duncan appealed and a tribunal awarded him a lump sum of £46,000 and a guaranteed weekly income payment for life.

Matthew McWilliams, a Royal Marine, suffered a fracture of his thigh bone during a training exercise. He was awarded £8,250, which was increased on appeal to £28,750 and a guaranteed weekly payment because of damage to his knee following surgery.

In June last year the MoD took both cases to a higher court, claiming it should have to compensate the men only for the initial injuries and not subsequent complications. The three judges ruled against the ministry, saying it was “absurd” to divorce the injury from treatment
Well, at least some judges don't have their heads firmly inserted in their rectum, like the MoD & Co. seem to.
The MoD was so concerned by the ruling that earlier this year it suspended payouts for three months, barring the most serious injuries. If it loses at the Court of Appeal, wounded soldiers who suffered further complications after treatment will be entitled to higher payouts.
God DAMN these people. These troops have been permanently injured in the service of their country, and these miserable little bastards are trying to screw them over.
Carl Clowes, 23, from Bradford, is among those taking a keen interest in the case. In July 2007 he was in a Land Rover in Helmand when it drove over a mine. Both his legs were crushed. His left leg was amputated below the knee 10 months later and he still suffers pain in his right leg. He can walk only short distances without crutches.

Clowes was awarded £92,000 for his amputated left leg, but £8,000 for his damaged right leg. He will be medically discharged from the army this week but will only be able to do sedentary work.

He appealed against his payout and shortly afterwards was delighted to find £48,300 in his bank account, which he used to pay off his mortgage. A day later the MoD contacted him to tell him the money had been paid in error. He is now being forced to return it.

“I’m permanently disabled. The last thing I expected was for the MoD to quibble over compensation,” he said
Let us remember this is the same MoD that's sending troops to combat without all their kit, without enough choppers, and now this crap.
Hey, Brits? How are you set for rope? And instructions to tie a noose?

On a slightly rainy Sunday morning, rather than take a walk

and get soaked, I think I'll browse news a bit. Like the British government getting caught playing games again:
Former Home Secretary Jacqui Smith has suffered a major setback in her legal battle with American 'shock jock' Michael Savage after her officials were accused of banning him from the country on racial grounds.

Emails written by Home Office officials privately acknowledged the ban on Mr Savage would provide 'balance' to a list dominated by Muslims - and linked the decision to Gordon Brown and Foreign Secretary David Miliband
This is one of the outcomes of playing politically-correct games with the security of a country; worry more(apparently) about how you 'look' than whether you're actually doing something. A lot like many of the gun bigots in this country.
The Right-wing radio presenter, whose hardline views on Islam, rape and autism have caused outrage in the US but whose show, The Savage Nation, has eight million listeners, was identified in May by Ms Smith as one of 16 people barred due to their political views.
Kind of like that Dutch legislator being banned from the country because his views weren't politically correct toward islam.
Mr Savage, who had not even applied for entry to Britain, claimed his name had been 'plucked out of a hat' because he was 'controversial and white'. He has since served a £100,000 libel writ on Ms Smith, who announced his ban on television.
Looks like he was right.
Now, correspondence released under Freedom of Information legislation suggests the banning of Mr Savage, whose real name is Michael Weiner, was based on a party political calculation made at the highest level of Government.
And why would the 'highest levels' be interested in doing this?
One message, sent by an unidentified Home Office official on November 27 last year, said that 'with Weiner, I can understand that disclosure of the decision would help provide a balance of types of exclusion cases'.

The documents include a draft recommendation, marked 'Restricted', saying: 'We will want to ensure that the names disclosed reflect the broad range of cases and are not all Islamic extremists.'

"We have to look like we're even-handed, so lets crap on somebody just to spread things out." Only one of the people they decided on actually made noise and trouble about it, so now there's a problem.

The Obama went on tv to tell people to stop causing him problems and be happy about their health care being taken over; didn't work real well:
I’ve been covering Barack Obama for a few years, and it’s usually crystal clear what he is up to. Not last night. This is the first time I’ve asked myself: What was THAT all about?

His prime time press conference was worse than a waste of time. He spent an hour (with the aide of a soporific White House press corps) pouring sand (one grain at a time) into the already-slowing gears of the machinery of health-care reform.

He made no real news on health care, but DID make news on race relations with his discussion of the Skip Gates case — thereby obscuring the topic he supposedly wanted to feature
And that's from MSNBC; really didn't go over well.

Over in China, yeah, they own a lot of T-bills, and could cause problems for us; and screw themselves, too. Interesting article.

The Iranian people haven't given up; I haven't seen much the last few days about what's going on, fighting against a thug government like that is nasty.

Speaking of thug governments, we have a true piece of idiocy coming out of the White House:
President Obama announced today, a cut $16.5 million in military aid to Honduras and threatened to slash economic aid also.

Yesterday Secretary of State Clinton said she was looking "to restore democracy and constitutional order in the Honduras crisis."

So the Honduran government following their Constitution and kicking out of office a president who knowingly and repeatedly violated the law is against constitutional order and democracy? Takes a real piece of twisting to come up with that. You'd think The Obama has some kind of real problem with someone actually standing for 'nobody is above the law', wouldn't you? And he does this in favor of a clown who likes his picture taken with Raul Castro and Chavez, two dictators he wants to imitate. Wonderful.

India, again, says "Take your global warming hysteria and shove it; we're not wrecking our economy to make you happy."

The former military captain says it was in the early 1990s, that he watched his then commander wrestle with giving up his 12-year-old daughter who was mentally ill. The commander, he says, initially resisted, but after mounting pressure from his military superiors, he gave in. Im watched as the girl was taken away. She was never seen again.

One of Im’s own men later gave him an eyewitness account of human-testing. Asked to guard a secret facility on an island off North Korea’s west coast, Im says the soldier saw a number of people forced into a glass chamber.

“Poisonous gas was injected in,” Im says. “He watched doctors time how long it took for them to die.”

Considering what all else we know the Norks do to their own people, it would not surprise me in the least for this to be true.

Note to industry: if you throw an event for moms who blog, and decide to have it at a place where babies are not welcome, it might cause you a problem. That's kind of like having an event for gunbloggers and deciding on a restaurant with pictures of Che on the wall and where firearms are not allowed; it won't go over well.

Tam points to Marko dealing with the 'health care is a RIGHT!' noise. Starting with
Let’s get the most obvious point out of the way first. You cannot have a right to something that necessitates a financial obligation on someone else’s part.

There is a part of it that is as simple as self protection. As was my Dad, my Mom was a Law Enforcement Officer and I heard firsthand the abuses she saw against other women in the course of her work, women for whom their only crime was to be small and timid against a raging bully. Women who had yet to learn that evil does not go away by submitting, but by fighting back. So she taught me to shoot and the reasons for which she did needed no voice. Individually, collectively I believe it's a right of mine, as a law abiding citizen, whether I am a LEO or not, male or female, large or small. That being the right to protect my body and my interests for which I've toiled. And I would defend with each breath, against any interference with that liberty on which our country was founded.

Government health care. Where the doctor can screw up and cripple you for life, and you can't do a damn thing about it.
Jessica Read says around 10 a.m., about an hour into the procedure, "A nurse runs out, 'We need blood now,' and she rounds the corner and my gut feelings is, 'Oh my God, is that my husband?'"

She says his Air Force general surgeon mistakenly cut her husband's aortic artery, but waited hours to transport him to a state hospital which has a vascular surgeon. "It took them until 5:30 to get him to UC Davis. I don't understand."

Because Read lost so much blood during that time, doctors had to amputate both legs. His mother sobbed, "I watched him take his first steps, and now his legs are gone."

"Disfigures"? Disfigures? If they'd left a scar on his face, that would be "disfiguring." THEY TOOK HIS LEGS.

But that's not the worst part:
Read's wife says the doctor admitted it was human error. "All my husband ever wanted to do was to deploy, all my husband ever wanted to do was serve his country. He used to tell me when we had flyovers and they played the national anthem, the chills he would get from the pride that he felt from being an American airman, and this is something an Air Force doctor has taken from him."

But because of an old federal law called the Feres Doctrine, Read, his wife, and his family members can't sue the military over what happened to him.
Now, when the .gov takes over the $2.3 trillion in annual health expenditures, what do you want to bet one way they'll eventually attempt to limit costs will be by limiting patient's right to sue for malpractice?

Because 'The government is in control of your health care, and cannot be troubled by your problems with the treatment."
You know, I understand 'people make mistakes', but I have to admit thinking this doctor ought to be used for bayonet practice.

And last, especially if you're going to be travelling out of the US, go here and read. It's worth it.