Tuesday, May 31, 2011

No Surprises

While food stamp participation is up 39%, government limousine use is up 73%.

Think of all the jobs saved or created by the purchase of all those limos.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Politics as Usual

This thing has been all over the web, so if you've already seen is and have stopped laughing/spluttering, just skip over.

As I've mentions about polls this early in the game, the questions tend to run along the lines of "Do you like immigrants, or would you like to see them thrown to the alligators in the moat?

Notice that the word "illegal" doesn't come up except as something the heartless GOP wants to superimpose on the luckless immigrant.

Now I do not endorse throwing immigrants to the alligators. At least not all of them. Certain narrowly defined subsets, maybe. And just to show that I don't believe that line about doing jobs Americans won't do, I would charitably consider including certain narrowly defined subsets of American citizens into the "alligator bait" category.

Let's even be sporting about it. I'd make the moat 50 feet wide, 2 feet deep, and the rule is that if you make it to the other side, you're free to go. Anywhere you like. If you want to come here, feel free to pick up an application, available at any bridge, and fill it out.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Foxes 2

So I carefully placed dollops of bobcat urine around the back yard, trying to simulate how a big hungry cat might mark out territory in hopes the cute little foxies would find a new home.

This morning I discover that one of them came around the house and pooped on my front mat.

You suppose they're on to me?

Saturday, May 28, 2011


All my followers have vanished. I have no idea where they went. I'm pretty sure all of them weren't Raptured, and I'm pretty sure I didn't say anything that would drive them all off at once. This must be something to do with the recent buggering of Blogger. Hopefully they'll be back at some point.

Update: I checked, and it's confirmed. Lots of blogs are having this problem, and Blogger has no idea what's causing it.

Update 2: Magically they are back.

Day At The Range

Nice day at the range. 4 rounds of IDPA-style match, followed by a 3-gun round.

I shoot well, if appallingly slowly.

As an aside, the range area where we did this was under about a foot of water within the last week.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Electioneering - How It's Done

Anyone who thinks the MSM don't have a stake and a position in the upcoming (only 17 more shopping MONTHS left!) elections either isn't paying attention or plans to vote for the Hawaiian Marxist anyway.

Pollsters get paid to find out what people think. They also get paid to influence how people think. Examples of the latter are push polls in which questions are phrased in such a way as to influence the outcome, not only of the poll, but of an impending election as well. Early on, a polling outfit can produce bogus results to please a customer since the results mean nothing but may influence an outcome later. CNN has just released a poll showing Rudi Guliani narrowly edging out Mitt Romney for first place. A bit of looking reveals the poll was of adults, not likely voters, which means it's skewed leftward. In spite of this Palin came in third.

The MSM can be counted on to come down solidly on the side of the most left-leaning candidate in any given election, so the preliminary work is to convince conservatives of the inevitability of the most left-leaning RINO the Republicans have to offer. Note the sterling endorsements the New York Times gave John McCain all the way up to the point that he got the nomination. Then they were all-Obama-all-the-time.

At this point, I believe that Obama could be beaten by an old yellow dog provided that 1) the dog came across as a conservative, say by biting John Kerry, and 2) demonstrated an unwillingness to sell out his principles, say by biting Nancy Pelosi in spite of being offered a steak not to.

Thursday, May 26, 2011


My neighbor tells me his wife saw 3-5 foxes playing in my back yard this morning. I certainly saw 2 of them, and this evening I find they have left the remains of another squirrel and a black and yellow bird, which I'm thinking I used to be able to identify.

They also seem to have been playing with the dog toys we leave out back for when my daughter brings her dog over.

They are cute, healthy looking, playful, doubtless flea-ridden, and cutting in to my supply of post-apocalyptic munchies (squirrels).

D'wife had me pick up a bottle of bobcat urine, which is flogged as certain to send the redcoats to someone else's pasture. I like the foxes, it's just that having a whole pack dening in your back yard is just a bit much. At $17 for a modest bottle, I would have been willing to go out, have a nice steak and a Guinness, to give the right predator overtones, and take a wiz around the back yard myself.

Unemployment and Inflation

Figuring in todays news is notices of "unexpectedly" increasing unemployment claims, coupled with complaints from the government that people aren't spending enough money to get the economy going again.

A journalist might wonder if there wasn't a connection here. A party hack would issue a clarion call to the peasants to get out there and help make the economy move.

The economists are fretting that you folks are spending too much on food and gas, and not enough on i-pads and Chevy Volts. Any day now I expect to hear a story that in spite of record spending on food, obesity is actually declining, pointing up the positive side of pounding the pavement in search of work.

Second quarter growth is currently being predicted at somewhere between 2.5 and 3.5%. I'm betting that by July 1, the "latest revised figures" will be in the neighborhood of 1.5%.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Springtime In The Rockies

Investigating the wife's complaints of noises and sightings of a fox on the back porch, it now appears I have a family of them denning under the concrete porch slab. I suppose some morning soon I'll be treated to the sight of several little kits frolicking in the back yard.

This would be easier to live with except that they've left the leftovers from dinner (squirrel) lying out in the open, where it no longer smells as fresh as it did when they brought it in.

More on this as it develops.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The Pollitical Circus

At this point, the 2012 election is a breathtaking 18 months out, the press id jonseing for someone to bash, and the Republicans aren't providing them with a target.

The bubbleheads on the View are convinced that following Obama's Rambo-esque actions in Pakistan, he is now unbeatable. Rassmussen begs to differ, but what does he know? The presidents disapproval rating has gone from a low of -22 to the current -10 on the strength of Osamas demise. We will see what telling the Jews to drop dead, siding with the unions against Boeing and South Carolina, and continuing to ignore the border problems does for that.

Mitch Daniels has officially dropped out, fearing that extensive press coverage of his wife's escapades from 10 years ago would be put up as evidence of his own lack of qualification.

Hermann Cain has made it official, he's in. The media is dealing with this by ignoring him.

I was going to comment on the state of things, but Jay Tea over at Wizbang beat me to it, and is doubtless a better wordsmith than I am, but the gist of it is that whomever the Republicans run doesn't have to be better than Jesus Christ, he only has to be better than the incumbent. The media will, of course, take exception:

4. Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules. Alinsky's example is controversial, but effective -- the Christian Church has never lived up to all the rules of Christianity. Saul Alinsky- Domestic Terrorist

By demanding that the Republican be perfect, and harping incessently on his shortcomings, the media draws attention away from the fact that in a truly just society, the Democrat would be doing consecutive life terms, breaking rocks on short rations.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Guns and Money

In this case lots of money.
This matched pair features a bird on the front sight that pops up, flaps, moves its beak, and sings no two songs alike, when the trigger is pulled. Finished in lacquer, with tastefully placed diamonds and gold detailing, Christies expects these two to fetch up to $2.5M for the pair.

Lacking a good tactical IWB holster set, I think you could snap these babies up for as little as $2M. If she didn't already have a Ruger Mk 2 of her own, I'd snag these up in a heartbeat for the little lady. What woman wouldn't love to have these in her gun safe?


Voting Patterns

Here's a couple of maps that I find interesting. The first
shows the voting patterns in the '08 election.

The second, thanks to the WSJ, (subscription may be required)
shows the states that require or ask for some form of ID before letting you vote. Correlation between the Blue states in the first map, and the white ones in the second isn't perfect, but is strikingly close. Some of the state shown in yellow here have instituted this requirement only recently.

Who knows, maybe the Dems protests that requiring I.D. to vote suppresses voter turnout may be true. The obvious solution is to set up more voter registration booths along the southern border and at every graveyard, although it may raise eyebrows outside of Arkansas at how alike so many democrats look.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

15 Minutes Of Fame

An outfit in New York that makes video productions for cable channels is planning a series on people who invent and build things. Somehow they got wind of me, via the pedal air gun.

I've ratted out some of my unindited co-conspirators too. I understand this is to go on the Sci-Fi channel when or if it comes to fruition. Watch, and find out why engineers should never be unemployed.

Marshall Mcluhan once suggested, back in the 70's, that in the future everybody would be famous for 15 minutes. My experience is that you get your 15 minutes in 10-second installments, and over a rather lengthy span of time.

Monday, May 16, 2011

For Want Of A Tail...

From the WSJ.com, Taranto reports:

Heads or Tails?
"The tail of the disabled Navy chopper left behind in the Usama bin Laden raid in Pakistan will be handed back to the United States sometime Tuesday, U.S. Sen. John Kerry announced Monday during a trip to Islamabad," FoxNews.com reports.

But the story leaves out the crucial detail, namely what the haughty, French-looking former junior senator from Massachusetts, who by the way served in Vietnam, had to give up to get the tail.

Does he still have the hat?

The jokes just write themselves, don't they? I mean if we wanted to send someone to Pakistan for a piece of tail, shouldn't it have been Bill Clinton? And yes, we know some men will give a lot for such a prize...

O.K. I'll quit it. For the moment.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Judicial Selection

As the field of presidential wannabes begins to coalesce, we begin to find out things about their pasts. Now admittedly this is more likely to happen with the Republican candidates since the press has no interest in vetting Democrats, just electing them, but the rise of the New Media, in the form of the blogosphere, Twitter, Facebook, et.al. has changed the rules.

The video I linked to regarding Newt Gingrinch and Nancy Pelosi, for example. And now this: In Indiana, appellate court judge Steven David has ruled that citizens have no right to resist an unlawful entry into their homes by the police. This ruling overturns established law going back to the Magna Carta itself, which was the inspiration for the fourth amendment barring searches or seizures without a warrant.

The peasantry are rightfully up in arms, and are demanding his head on a pike, or at least his removal from office. As a recent appointee, he is up for a retention vote in 2012 so they may well get their way on this one, but who, I hear you ask, appointed such a doofus?

Governor, and presidential wannabe, Mitch Daniels!

Executives sometimes make bad picks for judgeships, Nixon appointed Stevens who turned out to be a bastion of leftie thinking for way too long, and Eisenhower commented that Earl Warren was the worst mistake he ever made, but we are owed at least a good yarn regarding the thinking, if any, that went into this appointment especially by someone who may well get to appoint judges to the Supreme Court.

H/T to Irons In The Fire


I would hate to think I had lived my entire life without seeing the apocalyptic end of the world at least once, and it now seems I'll have my chance. An evangelical radio ministry is predicting the end of the world for 6 PM, EST, on Saturday, May 21.

The event is in fact predicted to begin on the 21st on the international date line, and progress around the world, so the place to be would be on a cruise ship on the East side of the line so you can observe the beginning of the end, and still have 24 hours to do whatever it is you think you should be doing in your last 24 hours on earth.

This brings about some conundrums for the average bloke. If God is sufficiently annoyed with us as to destroy the whole world, then some last-minute sin and debauchery will probably not affect the ultimate outcome much. On the other hand I've heard it said* that if you repent at the last minute, then after an agonizing death under the hot lava, you get full medical benefits and a harp.

There is also the specter of a heavenly bureaucracy at work:
Camping’s followers believe many will die in earthquakes on May 21, but the world will go on for another five months before it’s destroyed on Oct. 21.
Which goes along with the story that the world was to be destroyed Jan 1, 1000 AD, but the paperwork is still being processed.

So go visit your favorite drinking establishment this coming Saturday, and start a tab. If the world ends, you drink for free, and if it doesn't, you pay the tab happy to be alive. It's a no-lose situation.

*Might make a good line in a rock-n-roll song, no?

Friday, May 13, 2011

Blogger Crash

Yesterday blogger was down for about an hour (well, more like 6 or more) for work of an undetermined nature. Today, it's back up, but some of the comments have gone missing. If anything you said isn't here today, rest assured, it's not my doing.

As I put up this post, I can tell you that everything has NOT been fixed.

There is no truth to the rumors that those text messages from the White House which you will all soon be receiving on your cell phones, will also appear as comments on blogger-based blogs.

Cookies And Candy

Nabisco is introducing another, even thicker Oreo cookie, the triple-double-stacker, consisting of three cookies, and two layers of stuffing, one vanilla, and one chocolate.

Eventually, they’ll figure out why people actually buy Oreos, and just sell the stuffing in toothpaste tubes.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Implications Of Obamacare

There is currently a case going on in the fourth court of appeals in which several states are arguing that the government has no right to compel the purchase of health insurance. The U.S. solicitor general is arguing that the government can compel pretty much anything it wants.

Back in the 30's the government argued that the grain a farmer produced on his own farm, to feed to his own livestock, precluded him from buying grain from a merchant engaged in interstate commerce of grain and therefore came under the control of the Federal government. If this sounds like a bit of a reach to you, then join the club, however the supreme court agreed with the feds, (Wickard v Filburn) and by extension, the Feds have the right to regulate most of your life.

Commerce is generally described as being an activity involving two or more parties exchanging tangible items of value, or at least promises of items to be delivered later. Minding your own business and NOT buying something from someone in another state, is generally not thought of as commerce, but today, there are new frontiers to be conquered.
In a shocking admission during a federal Court of Appeals hearing on the constitutionality of ObamaCare, attorneys for the federal government asserted in court that the government can force citizens to not only buy health insurance but also other consumer goods such as wheat.
Under this logic, if the government decided to "save or create" a bunch of jobs at Government Motors, it could require everyone to go out and purchase a new Chevy. The judges hearing this case were appointed by Obama and Clinton and are expected to rule in favor of the government, which suggests that the case will be decided 5-4 by the US supreme court.

Newt Wants To Be President

Billll thinks he's past his "use by" date. Well past.

Party insiders favor the "next guy in line" which gave us Bob Dole and John McCain.

Political neophytes favor any first term representative with a bold new bill to address the problem du jour.

I favor someone with a proven record of executive experience. Pawlenty, Daniels, Jindall, Cain, and Perry come to mind.

I am also painfully aware they don't call it the "Stupid Party" for nothing.

Cooking The Books

A.P. is reporting a poll that shows a 60% approval rating for the president. Later in the article you find out that the pollsters assume 46% of the U.S. population is Democrat, 29% is republican, and 20% can't make up their minds, or slightly better than the faculty of an average college.

In a possibly unrelated story, some 20% of those questioned think Osama Bin Ladin is still alive. This is roughly the same percentage that thinks Elvis is working in the bodega down the street.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Bringing Someone Along

A lady friend of mine whom I have often taken to the range, has just bought herself a gun. I did not pressure her to buy this one over that one, but rather let her shoot everything I owned, and anything I could talk my friends into letting her shoot. I emphasized that if she bought one for herself, it should, first and foremost, “fit” her. That is the piece should come to point in her grip reasonably close to what she’s aiming at so as to minimize the final tweaking of the sight picture.

She wanted something in a major caliber, that is 9mm or larger that was low maintenance as far as learning the fiddly details like cleaning and correcting malfunctions, at a modest price. She found a 4” Ruger Security six in .357.

She likes the part of practicing with relatively cheap .38 special ammo, and having the option of the .357s power should the occasion call for it. Think bowling pins.

Having bought the gun, she’s looking at it in much greater detail than she did with the loaners she used before, and is developing a variation of the soldiers attitude toward it. “This is my rifle. There are others like it, but this one is mine, and I’m going to love it and hug it and squeeze it until its eyeballs pop out.”

Now comes the fun part: accessorizing. The gun came in its original cardboard box. No accessories. So what is needed, and in what order? Here’s my list:

1)Ear Muffs. Electronic ones can be had at Harbor Freight for about $20. Non-electronic ones work better.
2) Cleaning kit. These can be had low buck from the big box stores complete with solvent and oil. If the solvent is missing, there’s Butches Bore Shine, although I’m sure everybody out there has a different favorite.
3)Holster. This is not particularly a CCW gun, but could be. My suggestion would be an OWB rig in leather, with a retention strap. Something that stays open when the gun is out so the gun goes back in one handed.
4)Speed loaders. 2 each, in a belt-mounted holder.
5)Carry Case. The soft ones are relatively cheap. It needs to hold the gun and speed loaders at a minimum. A small range bag might be the ticket here. For that matter, a small gym bag might work just about as well and doesn’t scream GUN if you wind up carrying it about in public.

That should cover the basics. Anything important I forgot?

Raising The Age

Found this today at the Shoe comic website:
Interesting observation. In primitive society's characterized by hardscrabble existence and abject poverty, the age of puberty is generally several years higher than in the more comfortable and wealthier ones.

Which way do you think the government's taking us?

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Guns and Money

Lawyers will be involved here too, bet on it. This fellow managed to smuggle some 80 pistols into England through the simple expedient of putting them in his checked luggage, and telling the curious TSA folks that he was an international security wonk.

The part I liked best was this:
A number of 9mm semi-automatic pistols believed to have been bought by Mr Greenoe for $500 each in a North Carolina gun shop were offered for sale at up to £5,000 a piece in Britain a week later, according to the Times.
£5,000 is a tidy sum of money in rapidly declining U.S. Dollars, 8,194.03 as of today, so he's making some 7694.03 in profit on each pistol he brings in. One pistol would pay for a nice vacation in England complete with sightseeing and souvenirs.

Are the guns falling into the wrong hands? Sure. One was taken in a drive-by shooting recently, but what did you expect. Being the wrong hands is evidently profitable enough to afford an $8000 handgun. Besides the victims are already disarmed and even if you get lucky defending yourself with a makeshift weapon, you'll be arrested and charged with anti-social behavior at the very least.

It works better over here. True, the thugs, even though forbidden from touching a firearm, seem to have little problem obtaining them, and probably at better prices than in England, but in most locations, there's a 3-5% chance the potential victim will be armed, and the crime rates are noticeably lower.

You do have to be careful when doing the comparison since the law enforcement there has been caught cooking the books to meet local government expectations regarding crime rates.

H/T to Smallest Minority for the lead on this one.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Spring Gun Fun

Mother Nature apparently having tired of banging the switch up and down, it's now Summer. 80's and sunshine, which beats last weekend with 40's and high wind.

Bowling pins in the morning and finishing about halfway down which means I'm getting better. More weight training is indicated. Some discussion went on as to the disparity between revolvers and automatics in a pin shoot. We limit autos to 8 rounds per magazine which seems like a big advantage, but if you aim carefully, 5 shots is all it takes, and the revolvers tend to carry an advantage in momentum.

What about a pin match with Limited Vickers rules? Limit everybody to 5 rounds period, and the winner is the one with the fewest pins still on the table, assuming someone doesn't just clear his table. How about including a time limit too?

Postal matches involving Necco wafers at Sandcastle Scrolls, and diminishing dots at Cheaper Than Dirt. Prizes: Not really, but you get to eat the unshot Neccos and there's a random drawing for a $50 gift certificate at CTD.

And yes, the Hi Point shoots smaller groups with the 180gr ammo. Not all problems have been resolved at this point.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Report Confirmed

Well if I was dictator, I'd have put the head on a pike on the White House front lawn for 3 days before putting it and the body in a pig farm for fodder. Did I mention the webcams at the pig farm?

Anyway, from Girl On The Right, this ought to be the iconic image of the day:
Sums it up nicely, doesn't it? I bet Mullah Omar is impressed with his sudden promotion to the top post at Al-Q too.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Bin Ladin Reported Dead

The network news is awash with reports that one of our drones in the tribal areas of northern Pakistan has bagged Osama Bin Ladin. The man has been hiding out so well that I believed he has been killed in the Tora Bora mountains in 2003 or thereabouts. OK I was wrong.

Update, as I write: Now I'm hearing that U.S. ground troops were involved. Not that we would send in troops to a foreign country uninvited, and that we have the body. I eagerly anticipate the placement of his head on a pike at the front entrance of the White House.

The president will be going on the air shortly, probably to apologize.

I'm lifting a dollop of some really fine rum in celebration.

Gun News

While the Brady Bunch is blathering that the gun culture is in a serious decline, it seems that Wal-Mart is adding more guns and ammo to their stores. Wally world doesn't put out merchandise that won't move folks, this is about as capitalist an organization as you can find.

Consulting with the FBI, one finds:
Now there are some caveats that go with this chart. As the FBI states, a NICS check does not equate to a gun sale, so actual sales will be less than the number of NICS checks. That said, the curve of the graph is a valid indicator of the trend in gun sales.

The number for 2011 is a projection based on the first quarter data only. The actual number will change as the year goes on, but not by a huge amount.

When you see a t-shirt at the gun show that says "Ammo: The new currency." You have to wonder if the misguided economic policies of the administration are actually having the unintended consequence of driving sales upward over and above their known hostility to guns in general.

At current exchange rates, a loaf of bread (about $1) is worth 34 rds of .22 LR, or 3 rds of .40 S&W.

In Search Of Accuracy 4

While looking for areas in which improvements can be easily made to improve the accuracy of my Hi Point 4095, I discovered that the sear assembly looked a bit skewed.

The pin running through the sear body is about .098" in diameter, and is visibly bent downward on both sides. I asked, and was told this was not on purpose. The trigger operates the sear by pulling the assembly down (down and left in the picture) to release the firing pin. The trigger movement, to this point was long, heavy, and rough with firing pin release happening eventually, but not too predictably. Trigger pull was running 12-16 lb on my Department of Bass fish scale.

Once straightened, the pin drops out, and is easily replaced with a hardened metric dowel pin, M2.5 x 19mm. Trigger pull is now a consistent 10 lb, which I think is a bit high, but is probably good for what is essentially a truck gun. Trigger action is now very crisp with no creep at all.

Did it help? Well yes. Previously I was getting 4MOA groups only with 180 gr bullets, and huge groups with my 155 gr reloads. Last trip out to the range, in winds strong enough to cause me, the table, and the sandbagged gun to wobble, best group was:
This looks like the groupings are going the wrong way, as I had 4MOA before, and this looks like 4.5MOA but considering that this ammo was handing me groups that would barely stay on a 10" pie plate at this distance before, I'd say there was a marked improvement. I have some 180 gr ammo now to test with, hopefully on a warm day with less wind.

Good Luck

It crosses my mind that the luckiest thing to happen to the prez this year is that Donald Trump does not (yet) own a newspaper chain.

Also at last night's blogger bash, I suggested that we hold a conspiracy contest. Best attribution of some event or events wins a t-shirt saying:
It's a PLOT!
Ask me how.
Here's mine: Don Trump IS planning to run for president, BUT as a long-time Democrat, he plans to run against Obama in the primaries. This will create a 3-way primary with Obie, The Donald, and the Other Clinton. This will make any Democrat who votes in a primary either a racist, a sexist, or anti-business, depending on whom they fail to vote for.

Fusion Power

Polywell Fusion, who has been working on a promising line of research funded mostly by the Navy, has sent out an annual progress report. Don't get excited, it says the current project (WB8) is about half done and on schedule.

What's interesting about the report is the obligatory reporting on jobs saved or created for the benefit of the government.
Jobs Created 11.00

Description of Jobs Created two full time plasma physicists. one full time equivalent electrical engineer.
So two physicists and one engineer equals 11 jobs. I suppose the magic word here is "equivalent", by which 9 electrical engineers working 4 1/2 hours each per week adds up to one full-time equivalent EE and still counts as hiring 9 people.

It's higher math, which is why they hire the physicists.