Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Product Endorsement

OK it's early, but here's my initial reaction. The aftermarket automotive fuel pump previous owner had installed on my Yamaha failed in that it would run for only about 10-12 minutes before ceasing operations. A 10 minute wait would get me back on the road for another 10 minutes but this is obviously not going to cut it.

Fuel pumps of the type normally fitter to the bike are available on e-bay at prices ranging from $15 to slightly over $500. Go figure. The same pump seems to be pictured in all ads. With some skepticism. I got one labeled "high performance". Not sure what that means in a fuel pump but aftermarket parts on e-bay tend to be factory seconds from China so any additional endorsement helps. Price was a bit under $21 so not bad, and it ships from CA. Surprisingly it arrived 3 days sooner than I had expected.

Not mentioned in the ad was any useful specs like flow rate or pressure. Not mentioned on the pump is any indication of inlet or outlet. You have to figure this out yourself. Put a few drops of gas down each of the hose connections and put some power to it and flow direction will become immediately obvious. Hose size is 5/16" which of course I didn't have lying around. No big deal. Pressure turns out to be about 3 psi which is fine for a carbureted motorcycle. One more thing: This is possibly the noisiest fuel pump I've ever dealt with. The rattle from this thing rivals the exhaust noise. It's louder when there's no fuel in it so I suppose it will be easy to tell when I've run out of gas. Or maybe it's just quiet in the garage by myself.

I'll take it out on a test drive today. I expect it will get me there and back again with no problems.

UPDATE: OK under normal running conditions I can barely hear it at idle so I was right about the garage being quiet. Forget what I said about the noise.

Saturday, July 4, 2020

How to Celebrate

It's 9:20 PM and the 'hood here sounds a lot like a war zone. In the background I can hear a couple of municipal displays going off. The local noise is much more encouraging as every single explosion is a thumb in the eye of the nanny state.

Rattle the windows, kids!

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Gun Sales - Through the Roof!

It would seem that  the powers that be behind BLM and Antifa can sell guns even better than Hillary or Obama. June checks are nearly 4 million and the projection model* is looking at nearly 40 million checks this year. Yes, I know not all checks represent a gun sale, but even using the NSSF estimate, that's nearly 27 million gun sales for 2020.

O.K. then, the 2020 curve is well off the reservation. The Murder Hornets, which seem to have disappeared from the news, don't have a chance. When your revolutionary army is met by liberal lawyers wielding AR-pattern rifles, you could reasonably conclude that you're on the wrong side of history.

Data like this can also be presumed to show a rather drastic decline in popular support for government. At this point, the lack of faith is in local level governments. Mayors and Governors. People are beginning to ask who is funding all this turmoil. Looks like outsiders.

*Yes, I know that projection models are in rather bad odor currently, but you got to use something if only to point a general direction.

Monday, June 29, 2020

Calculating Reparations

OK this seems to be a hot topic since the Danes are through the city gates and threatening to burn more of the town if they aren't paid off. Keeping Kiplings thoughts on this topic in mind, let's see if there isn't some way to figure out who is owed and how much.

Between 200 and 400 years ago, some black people were rounded up by their fellow black people, and sold to some white people who took some of them to the British colonies or the recently formed United States, and resold them. There they labored up until 1865 for room and board and minimal healthcare provided by their owners. After this they were freed to do with their lives whatever they wished. 150 years later, lets see how they are doing compared to their former countrymen who avoided their evil fate.

I looked up some statistics, and keeping in mind that such numbers may not be entirely accurate, let's use them anyway as no others are available. First off how well are the Africans who avoided slavery by selling their cousins doing: I picked 2 countries, Ghana and Nigeria to represent Africa. Good picks? Who knows. Feel free to look up others. Most American slaves came from the West Coast of Africa, and there are a lot of small countries along that coast.

Current average income per household in Ghana is listed as $7442 USD/yr. Current average household income in Nigeria is listed as $15,746. I suppose it's higher there because of the larger proportion of royal princes in the general population. I could be wrong. Sue me.

The average black family in the U.S. is earning some $67,426 USD/yr. This is lower than the U.S. Average by a bit, but that's the published number.

This implies that at worst the former Africans are on average bringing home between $51,680 and $59,984/year MORE than they would be making had their ancestors never been enslaved. Put another way, the average black American is bringing home between 4.28 and 9.06 times as much as he could have been making “back home”.

Was the long strange trip easy? No! Life's like that. Easy for some and harder for most of the rest of us. The methodology has been published and re published, Simply follow the directions, and Voila! Cake! At this point it might be fair to ask how much of a gratuity the rest of us should be asking from these fortunate few for their 400-900% pay raises.

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Get Trump – Chapter 6?

At least 6.

Started out with the locker room talk scandal, but as Trump never presented himself as a plaster saint, it didn't carry any weight.
Next came the Russia. Russia, Russia. Trumps energy policies pulled the rug out from under the Russians, and Gen Mattis put a stop to their more egregious adventurism in the middle east so unless Putin was trying to undermine his own country, the charge against Trump made no sense.

As a by-product of the Russia fiasco, the involvement of the DNC and Clinton campaign in the Steele dossier became painfully obvious.
The impeachment effort filled headlines daily with people increasingly noticing that it served as an excuse for the House to do nothing else. I suppose that if you know that whatever the House does will be stopped in the Senate, and vice versa, there must be little incentive to even show up for work.

The involvement of the Chinese in stealing everything they could get their hands on in the US and adventurism abroad was met with resistance which the left tried, unsuccessfully to label as racism.

The virus problem was used as an excuse to shut down the fastest growing economy ever seen and mute Trumps claims to economic success. Used as an attack on Trump, it worked, but it worked sort of like setting off a giant stink bomb in a crowded elevator. The Chinese are trying to blame the virus on Trump. So far, no one is buying that. Trump is trying to get people back to work and is meeting strong resistance from the Dems who would prefer we all stayed home and starved.

Now comes the latest attack: The George Floyd riots. Note that the riots are happening in Donk controlled cities, and that the municipal administrations are for the most part, siding with the rioters. Black Lives Matter? Not really. If they did, the riots would be put down, the Antifas would be jailed, and black-owned businesses would not be burned out. Unemployed blacks are victims and as such are actively courted by the Dems. It's a good thing since the last time we had unemployment this high they elected their president 4 times in a row.

The riots being municipal level disturbances, the president has limited ability to jump in and put them down. It's a local problem after all. Somehow Trump is expected to come up with a Federal solution to local police problems while the house panders to black nationalists and tacitly supports their militia, Antifa. As such, I expect the left will be actively supporting the riots all the way through November with calls for more every time some thug of the right pigmentation gets shot by a cop in the commission of a crime. They will probably call for more if Trump gets reelected to protest “Vote Suppression”, something that can be investigated through his second term. Get out in the street, wave a sign, spread plague, burn your house down, and vote Dem. It's a safe bet that if a Dem becomes President, money for the rioters will dry up over night.

Every Monday, for the last 3-1/2 years, we've been told that the coming Friday would be the big day with Trump frog marched out of the White House in handcuffs. I'm still hearing this. I expect to hear it until 2024, unless the election turns into a huge landslide of voters fed up with Dem shenanigans who hand Trump a second term with both the House and Senate. In that case, the republicans will revert to form and spend most of their time attacking each other.

Friday, June 12, 2020

Defunding The Police - How I'd Do It

Well, maybe not, but consider this: First the local government defunds the police. This frees up considerable monies which of course would NOT be returned to the taxpayers. Let's say it gets spread around among the other government entities.

First you let everyone know they're on their own so you encourage the populace to always go armed.

Second, you encourage the populace to view lawbreakers not as underprivileged victims, but as dangerous predators. This is the hard part as many elected officials view these people as valued constituents and supporters.

Third, if you are accosted by one of these predators, you are encouraged to use your armament to stop the predation, with an eye toward also including possible recidivism.

Lastly, you should call the newly expanded city trash service and have them pick up the debris and move it to the local landfill. This also requires that any paperwork would need to include not only cause of death (lead poisoning) but reason for death (Attempted Wealth Redistribution). Again we have to be careful here as tax collection, while being the same function as AWR, is done under color of law and shooting tax collectors is frowned on. At least by the local government who rely on the swag to keep themselves employed.

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Biden Calls For Military Coup!

Well, O.K. this is actually a fun with headlines post. Breitbart puts this up:

Biden: Military Will Remove Trump From W.H.

The actual story following the Breitbart link isn't nearly as exciting. More like a work of bad Science Fiction in Bidens head.
During an interview aired on Wednesday’s broadcast of Comedy Central’s “Daily Show,” 2020 Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden said that he has thought about what would happen if he won the election and President Trump refused to leave office and that he believes the military would remove President Trump “from the White House with great dispatch” if such a scenario took place.
When you think about it, Trump has refused to leave the office for 3-1/2 years now and I suppose the Donks are beginning to think that he won't. After all if it was them, they wouldn't now would they?

As long as we're cooking up conspiracies, how about this: The Wuhan Flu was developed by the Chinese at the request of the Clintonistas as a last-ditch effort to make Trump look bad by destroying all his economic gains. Makes as much sense as anything Biden has come up with so far.

Name That City!

I own the world  has a contest up to name the instant city the rioters have declared in the middle of Seattle. As of this printing, there are some 250 suggestions, some quite good.

I suggest naming the lace "Utopia" as this seems to be the stated objective of the founders. It does require that you ignore the sudden absence of food within the city limits, and the near instant appearance of a warlord type who is managing something that isn't actually a police unit, but which enforces his rule with a iron fist.

Gee! Who could have seen that coming?

Tuesday, June 9, 2020


Voting the man rather than the party is high principle indeed. Unfortunately it seldom pays off. The "Man" you voted for turns out to have no principles, just a talent for persuasion that tops his opponent. Should a man with principles actually get elected, no sooner does he take his seat than the political equivalent of Guido and Nunzio come by and carefully explain his first choice to him: He can keep his principles or he can keep his seat, but not both.

Democrats have an unpublished agenda of "Power for me, but not for thee". Dissenters are summarily tossed under the bus. Republicans are a party on minimalist government and carry this philosophy through to party management. Dissenters are tolerated and become known as "Mavericks" (McCain) or "Moderates"(Romney) who go on to destroy any narrow margins of majority their putative party may hold.

Vote the silver-tongued devil of your choice, but in the end, you get the Democrat platform. Quickly or slowly, your choice.

Friday, June 5, 2020

What's Bugging You?

Found this while attacking the stump in my back yard.
It's a pupae of a moth, and it's 1-1/2" long by 1/2" in diameter. Way back when, we kids would find these and our parents solemnly explained that we had found a which-a-way bug. When held with the pointy end up and squeezed gently, the pointy end would wiggle in a circular fashion. If you asked the bug "Which a way did (insert someones name here) go?" the angle of the tail, when you backed off the squeezing, would reliably indicate the direction in which the person would be found.

It seldom took more than one try to disprove this, but if you put the thing in a jar with a thin layer of dirt and a mesh cover, you would eventually see the moth emerge. By now I've forgotten what kind of moth it was but I seem to remember that it was one of the larger ones.

This one was dead when I found it.

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Global Warming - Another Half-Baked Solution

And as usual, a solution looking for an actual problem. First lets look at global temps for the last 2000 years. The data is derivative, but plausibly reliable:

A slow downward trend with a slight rise which is being sold as catastrophic end of the world sort of event. Historically, the planet seems to have a maximum temp that it never exceeds:
Only about 1.5-2 degrees warmer than present. Also note the downward trend, crammed into the far right hand end of the graph. 

What interests me is the cyclic pattern of about 110,000 years when the planet is plunged into a global ice age which seems to last a lot longer than those short warm periods. Someone better than me at math could apply a Fourier Transformation to this and show the various event cycles that result in this periodic function. Maybe there's a small black hole in a wildly elliptical orbit that does this by disrupting the asteroid belt and bringing on extinction level meteor impacts.

Whatever, this solution to the problem of global warming, involving spraying the upper atmosphere with Sulfur compounds to reduce the sunlight coming in leaves me unimpressed. The last time this was done, the dinosaurs went extinct.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Gun Sales - Up Again

Topping the 3 million mark for only the third time ever, bested by the run on guns at the COVID outbreak in March, and the panic over possible new gun regs following a terrorist attack in San Bernadino. Certain people, by their behavior can sell guns at rates only dreamed of on Madison Avenue.
Currently the left is making it abundantly clear that if the "kinder, gentler" coup attempt against PDT doesn't work. more violent means will be perfectly acceptable.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Fun With Headlines

Gateway Pundit makes a practice of lacing its stories with links to other stories. Sometimes....
TRENDING: VIDEO: Leftist Protester Killed, Dragged by FedEx Truck in Downtown St. Louis after Mob Shuts Down Highway and Attack His Truck
Trump was beaming with pride! 
“When you see a site like that, it’s incredible,” Trump said.
This seems more prone to misinterpretation than  others.

Monday, May 25, 2020

Unforeseen Consequences

Looking at an article on getting college campuses open again this fall, and considering other articles suggesting that a large part of going to college can be done from home electronically and at much lower cost, I'm wondering if there isn't an unforeseen opportunity here for the right.

College towns are notorious for being hotbeds of leftist thought, probably because they provide 15-20,000 ignorant kids being taught by a few Marxist professors, and kept in line by an equal number of diversity administrators. Now imagine that the coursework is being taught online. If a student has a question, the same computer that brought the lecture, can also search the answer to his or her questions. In some cases, the students parents might also be available.

Since the students are staying home instead of being concentrated in the academic camp, there's more incentive to register to vote where you live. This reduces the supply of lefty votes in the college towns and gives the working parents who actually live there more clout.


UPDATE: If the CDCs guidelines for opening primary schools are carried into colleges, no one will want to go there anyway, and the party of micromanaging nannies will fall into even more disrepute.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Lockdown - Day 737

So it's time to crush and bag the cans. Fortunately I'm ready:

The key to really getting good output is finding tires with a square profile.
This flattens them better. I suppose if it were up on casters, it would be easier to deploy and I could put a small waste basket underneath to catch the flattened cans. Oh well, the snow shovel also works well.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Lockdown - Day 735

I may have lost count of the days, but I can assure you that all 35 pneumatic tires here are inflated to their recommended pressures. I am also ready to comply with the governors "All masks, all the time" regulations:
I still need to add a stiffener to the stovepipe of the hat.

The first IDPA match since January will be this weekend. I added some upgrades to my gun, but haven't been able to test them, everything being closed. Oh well, I've probably forgotten how to shoot anyway, so it won't make much difference. I did build a couple of shooters in my spare time:
 These are made from 5/8-11 fasteners and are chambered for .22 cal air gun pellets. Motive power is a large pistol primer. Seems a friend of mine had some that got wet and he doesn't trust them any more. So far I've only had one fail to fire.
That white block is the sear. You pull the firing pin back, and insert it between the knob and the breech plug. A little tug, and BAM! The black part of the barrel is a piece of PVC pipe that limits how far you can screw the barrel into the coupling nut. It has a #1 hole drilled through it which is used to swage the pellet to the barrel size so you can load it from the front. I need to fire this through my chrony  since I know you will all be wanting to know the power factor this thing makes.

Monday, May 18, 2020

Stopping Vote Fraud

Or if not completely stopping it, at least making it somewhat more difficult.

Breitbart is reporting that Rep Rodney Davis (R-IL) has introduced legislation making the most egregious forms of ballot harvesting illegal throughout the U.S.
 Ballot harvesting, in the way House Democrats are trying to nationalize, allows any individual to pick up any voter’s ballot for any reason and deliver it to the polling location, completely unchecked.
Lists are publicly available noting the party affiliation of every registered voter in every precinct. Using these lists, anyone could visit only homes with persons registered to one party, or simply visit all the homes in a precinct and "lose" the ones signed by anyone in the "wrong" party. It's easy, and very effective especially in nursing homes.

If you ever needed an excuse to write your congress critter and ask him or her to support a bill, this would be it. Hammer the Donks to support clean voting and oppose fraud and make sure everyone you know knows how they voted on this.

No number on it yet.

Monday, May 11, 2020

Transportation - The Fully Enclosed Motorcycle

OK one more time for this approach. Here's an all electric one person vehicle that the manufacturer does not claim to be a 3-wheel car
Not bad looking. It drives the rear wheel only which I suppose is less expensive and complex than driving both the front wheels although I suspect this will prove problematic on an icy, snow-packed road. Of course if you don't expect to see many of those, then this may be just what you want. Looks like a pretty good choice for either commuting to work or for your kid at college.

Range is listed as 100 miles, and top speed as 80-85. The usual caveat for electrics is that you get to choose. You won't get both. If your kids college is over 100 miles away, you don't need to worry about them coming home for laundry every weekend.

MSRP is about $18,000 which is a bit on the high side for a commuter motorcycle, but includes all the amenities you've come to expect in a car, including 2 doors and bluetooth.

The full-width body no doubt makes for a fairly roomy interior and a flat floor makes getting in and out from either side easy. This may sell well in places like Yuma and Florida where golf carts are popular even though I'm having a hard time seeing where your clubs would go. Maybe there's an aftermarket for a club caddy with highway rated tires to be towed behind.

Made by Electra Meccanica, currently at a motorcycle plant in China, they plan to move production to Vancouver in about 2 years. At the link there's even a calculator you can use to compare operating costs with various gasoline powered vehicles for gas prices as low as $1/liter (about $4/gallon).

They also have a 2-seat roadster in the pipe with more impressive performance and priced at $50K-$100K depending on where you source the price.

Here's another write up by a professional journalist with more info.


Found at Power Line I think:
Every time a new gun law is proposed, banning this gun or that on the grounds that it is only intended for killing "the greatest number of people in the shortest time", I go to the hearings and ask the "sponsor*" why the police are always exempted. I have never gotten an answer.
*The sponsor of a bill is seldom the actual author. Most legislators couldn't write a coherent paragraph, much less a complicated piece of legislation. All too often, "carrying" a bill is equivalent to carrying water for a big donor.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Small Victories

The governor is easing up on us and today the salons were open, at least some of them. One near me had an opening and got me in and removed my Corona Mullet. They manned every other chair, allowed no one in without a mask, and pretty much touched nothing but hair. A very professional job. They also had no inside waiting chairs. You waited outside in your car and got called in when your turn came up.

If anyone is looking, I'd recommend the Great Clips at Quebec and 470. Bring a mask.
Sorry for the lousy picture.

Thursday, May 7, 2020

Fundamentals of Electricity In Motorcycles

I learned the basics of electricity by buying and driving British motorcycles. In the 60s this was probably the quickest way to learn all the ins and outs of the topic. Either that or take up long distance hiking. In those days, most if not all motorcycles came with only one fuse, right next to the battery. If anything at all went wrong, it blew and the whole bike went dark.

There was a quick way to diagnose any electrical problem at all back then, since most of them involved a wire somewhere that had rubbed against something until the insulation was gone, and shorted out, blowing the fuse. The riders job was to find the rubbed spot and move it away from the ground spot at least long enough to get you home.  You did this by sitting on the ground next to your bike, where you could see most of the harness, remove the blown (15-20A) fuse, and prepare the 50 amp slo-blo. This done by wrapping the blown unit in some foil from your cigarette pack. Yeah, everyone smoked.

Place the new fuse in the holder, and push it together with the key on, and watch the bike carefully to see which wire began smoking. Voila! you found the culprit. Move the afflicted wire away from whatever had damaged it, perform the smoke test one more time to be sure you got the problem, then start up and motor on down the road.

The Japanese changed all this by copying the wiring from computer assisted cars into their motorcycles. Now you have to figure out where they hid the fuse box, pull all the fuses out until you find the bad one, figure out which of several components on that circuit was misbehaving, and figure out how to get the bike to run at all long enough to get you home. Not easy without a set of tools and a multimeter.

When my Little Red Bike suddenly quit the other day, it wasn't hard to figure out that the fuel pump had quit, so the issue was either a blown fuse or a blown pump. Since the fuses were all behind a panel held in place with 2 5mm socket head screws and I had no 5mm Allen wrench, which it was didn't matter, I needed a trailer. I arraigned for that, got the bike home where when I turned the key, the pump hummed merrily and the motor fired right up. I hate intermittent problems. They know when they're close to a tool set, and disappear.

Previous owner had replaced the stock fuel pump with an aftermarket one from Auto Zone. Nothing wrong with that, but the wiring was not plug and play so he added about 6" of extra wire and a couple of quick disconnects. Here's your lesson for the day: QDs work OK under normal circumstances, but motorcycles are not normal. Under high vibration, they can become slow disconnects, the sort of thing Joseph Lucas probably invented. Mr Lucas is also known for having invented the intermittent windscreen wiper. Also the intermittent headlight and ignition system. The QDs are now gone, the wires are soldered, and the bike seems to run fine.

Monday, May 4, 2020

The Walter Duranty Award

They aren't calling it that yet, as of today it's called the Pulitzer Prize, but the NYT has won yet another one for their trophy case, this time for the 1619 project in which they re-write American history to claim that the big reason for the American revolution was to preserve slavery in the colonies.

This will sit next to the 2018 Pulitzer for covering the Russian Collusion of Donald Trump, a masterpiece of modern science fiction journalism.

The award is expected to be renamed for Walter Duranty who, in the '30s won a Pulitzer for his fawning coverage of Joe Stalin, assuring everyone that all was going well in Russia, no one was being arrested, no one was starving, and no one was being shipped to Siberia.

Gun Sales - Another Record!

OK here we are up to April. The curve is following the usual directions, but significantly higher than expected. Government actions in Virginia and Canada are probably spooking people on top of diktats from several other state and local sources.

When the left gets the chance, they waste no time securing their grasp on power. If they see no chance the Republicans will use ballot harvesting, graveyard voting, and importation of foreigners to the polls, then there is no reason for them to hold back.

Saturday, May 2, 2020

New Canadian Gun Laws

Which I suppose will become the new standard for us. Kevin notes that the list of banned items includes some 18 rocket launchers including ground-to-air and RPG type stuff. The bears in Canada must be meaner than I thought.

From an RKBA newsletter I get, I added the boldening. Note that while every anti-gunner out there says this, all of them, without exception, includes an allowance for the police to use them. For an example, google Tiananmin square.

On 5/2/2020 2:14 PM, Greg Smith wrote:

O Canada: Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has introduced a long-promised ban on assault-style weapons following the country's worst gun massacre in April. New rules would make it illegal to sell, transport, import or use 1,500 varieties of assault weapons. The ban is effective immediately [May 1] but there will be a two-year amnesty period for law-abiding gun owners to comply. Mr Trudeau also said he would introduce legislation, which has yet to pass, to offer a buy-back programme. Unlike the US, gun ownership is not enshrined in Canada's constitution, but gun ownership is still popular, especially in rural parts of the country. Mr Trudeau made a point of saying that most gun owners are law-abiding citizens, but argued that assault-weapons serve no beneficial purpose. "These weapons were designed for one purpose and one purpose only – only to kill the largest amount of people in the shortest amount of time," he said in a press conference on Friday. "You don't need an AR-15 to bring down a deer." ...RCMP have said that the shooter was not licensed to own firearms, but had what appeared to be an assault-style weapon, as well as other guns. The RCMP did not specify which kind, so it is unknown if it will be covered by the ban... (A great deal of firearm technology has military origins. That said, Trudeau's claim that, “ These weapons were designed for one purpose and one purpose only – only to kill the largest amount of people in the shortest amount of time” would seem to describe bombs, artillery and tripod mounted machine guns. He will likely get away with this specious argument in Canada, where not even defense of the home is considered a lawful use of a firearm.)

Thursday, April 30, 2020

Understanding Humanity

It's all fairly simple really, hormonal based and baked in at birth:

Estrogen makes you crazy,

and Testosterone makes you stupid.

Your job is to decide how much of either of those you're willing to tolerate when added to whatever redeeming virtues the other person may have, and don't complain about your choice.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Wuhan Flu - Data From Italy

Found at Gateway Pundit:
The Italian Society for Rheumatology studied 65,000 patients on longterm hydroxychloroquine for RA and Lupus.

Only 20 patients tested positive for COVID-19. No ICU, no deaths.

This is a 90% reduction in infection rate compared to the rest of Italy.https://www.iltempo.it/salute/2020/04/28/news/coronavirus-farmaci-efficaci-news-danni-cura-annalisa-chiusolo-artrite-terapia-idrossiclorochina-sars-cov2-1321227/ 

Mama Mia! Dat'sa no bad, eh? .038% infection rate, 0% death rate.

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Making Things - Wuhan Flu, Etc

In time of the plague, people confined to quarters become quite creative. In Atlanta someone has been making plaques and gluing them to walls:
This is genuine art of the collectible sort. I first saw this in an article in the Atlanta paper where the author mentioned that the artist was being denounced as a racist for producing it. Apparently unaware that Winnie The Pooh is a very common stand-in for Emperor Xi Jin Ping to the point that Winnie has been banned in China in any form, and using the image will get you a visit from the police. I wrote her and asked to be informed if the artist is ever identified as I would like to purchase one of the medallions and maybe a t-shirt.

On a lighter note there's this:
Full marks for creativity here although the doggie's feet don't seem to be particularly well attached to the legs.

My own efforts at making a Plague Doctors mask are having limited success as the tip of the beak, being the apex of some 5 seams, wants to assume a spiral shape all out of keeping with the pointed beak of a crow. It's something to work on while it's raining.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Global Warming? 2

In conclusion, eventually, Mr Moore points out that all the Green groups have pretty much sold out to money grubbing capitalists who are using them as front groups to get government subsidy money for unsustainable projects like biomass which is a very green way of saying wood burning. If we were to cut down every tree in the country it would provide enough energy to run the country for less than a month. Then there would be the 10-15 year wait for the next harvest.

Conspicuously missing is the dreaded N-word, nuclear. The best idea offered is that we humans reduce our demand for energy, apparently back to the level of  burning cow chips, and figure out how to heat our homes with that, or else reduce our numbers to an equivalent demand, which with no actual numbers having been suggested, looks like about 10% of current world population. They recognize that their solutions won't work. They do not yet have a viable alternative.

For the Greenies, we will need a better virus.

Worth watching? Yes. Overpriced in terms of time spent? Yes.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Global Warming?

And other existential issues facing mankind. Here

is Michael Moore's latest offering. Scott Adams is promoting it since he is quite impressed with Mr. Moores ability to seemingly change his mind when confronted with problematic facts. Bottom line: the green movement is a bunch of bunk. I'm about halfway through it (100 minute run time) and so far I'm not seeing anything I haven't known about for years.

First off let me say that in the first 50 minutes, Mr. Moore has not made an appearance. So far they're describing the shortcomings of all the stuff college students find so attractive; wind, solar, biomass, and the like. So far, nuclear hasn't come up. I guess I need to listen to the whole thing to find out, but I'm not optimistic that this topic will come up even though it's been the source of all the significant advances in energy production in the last 20 years or so.

The movie plods. Moore should have hired some stunt men and blown some stuff up from time to time. Still it's refreshing to see avowed greenies come to the conclusion that they're wrong and admit it.

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Happy Birthday

This blog is 12 years old today. Right now I have nothing to add.

UPDATE: Unrelated, but the Dow has now regained 50% of it's losses. Horay!

Also I fired up the lawn mower for the first time this year. Blah!

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Kung Flu - L.A. Times Contributes To The Fog

In this article featured on the Drudge top bar, The L.a.Times announces that neither Chloroquine nor Hydroxychloroquine seem to be contributing much in the fight against the Kung Flu virus. This seemed to be at odds with the many reports that came out early of impressive success using these drugs. The Times cites 3 studies and to their credit, even included links.

Study #1 here, is from France. Here's the summary:
No evidence of clinical efficacy of hydroxychloroquine in patients hospitalised for COVID-19 infection and requiring oxygen: results of a study using routinely collected data to emulate a target trial
Here's the takeaway: The patients in this study were all in advanced stages of the disease and required immediate hospitalization and oxygen to survive.

Study #2 is from China.  Some 20+ doctors were involved from as many different organizations. The testing, again, involved patients requiring hospitalization and what was referred to as Standard Of Care. The daily dosages administered went as high as 1200 mg to start and 800mg sustaining. It was noted that while the virus itself was not killed off, symptoms involving blood problems were mitigated. They also noted that there were side effects in some of the patients, most notably diarrhea. As the most common dosage used in the more successful tests is 2 days of 400mg follower by 4 days of 200mg, this seems a bit excessive but heart attacks were not mentioned.

Study #3 from Brazil also involved high doses.
 We found three non-randomized studies with limited sample sizes in which (1) HCQ use led to a decrease in SARS-Cov-2 detected in respiratory secretions five days after treatment, together with azithromycin (France, 36 patients); (2) HCQ use shortened time to clinical recovery (China, 62 patients); and (3) CQ was superior to control treatment in inhibiting the exacerbation of pneumonia, improving lung imaging findings, and promoting virus-negative conversion and shortening the disease course (China, 100 patients). We found no published studies comparing different dosages of CQ/HCQ and their thorough safety assessment.
So the HCQ and CQ both helped shorten hospital stays and improved lung function in the studies that this study covered, but this study had some heart problems show up.
The preliminary findings from CloroCovid-19 trial suggest that the higher dosage of CQ (12 g total dose over 10 days) in COVID-19 should not be recommended because of safety concerns regarding QTc prolongation and increased lethality, in the Brazilian population, and more often in older patients in use of drugs such as azithromycin and oseltamivir, which also prolong QTc interval.
 12g/10 days translates to 1200mg/day or 3-6 times the usual dose. Nasty side effects? Certainly. Also, note that the patients in the test were also in an advanced stage of the disease and required hospitalization.

My Conclusion: If you begin the Q drugs, at standard dosages of 2-400 mg/dy, either one of them, along with an antibiotic, at the earliest stages of the disease, seems to work quire well and will have you back on your feet in about 5-6 days. Some people recommend Zinc. Note that 1-A-Day contains 15mg of zinc. At least the ones I get do.

DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor. I'm just an engineer who read the papers, both the scholarly ones and the LATimes. Feel free to follow the links and tell me what I missed.

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Lockdown Food Thread

Shamelessly stolen from Sal Mayweather, this poke at Libertarians seems to be made up of what I would call Minnesota Mexican food:
I mean, like what's not to like: Taco shell, hot dog, ketchup, cheese (probably American process), lettuce, and a dollop of sour cream. Cultural assimilation at it's best! Or maybe worst. Or maybe wurst. Needs Jalapenos.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Weapons Grade Weed Produced In Iran

I thought we had some impressively potent stuff here in Colorado, but it looks like we're now playing second fiddle to whatever they're producing in Iran.
Iran’s General Salami Unveils Magnetic ‘Bipolar Coronavirus Remote Detector’
 Unveils isn't the right word here as no actual demonstration of any such device was performed. Still, consider the talent stack seemingly necessary to become a two-star general in Iran.

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Back To Work

Why am I not the least bit surprised at the latest shenanigans regarding a possible end to the National House Arrest? First howls of protest at the shutdowns at the presidents request but fairly enthusiastically pushed by the nations governors. All resulting deaths will be trumps fault. Next a hail of recriminations claiming that it should have been done sooner and the heightened death toll is Trumps fault. Now we are being told that it's time to get back to work.

But what's the best time to end the lockdown?  It's when the additional deaths resulting from people working in groups exactly balance out the decline resulting from staying locked up. Sort of a reverse flattening of the curve. A leveling, if you will. The absolute minimum death rate would come from a complete lockdown until such time as a good vaccine is available, tested, and approved by the FDA, and universally administered. This I expect will happen some time between never and the heat death of the universe.

Plan B is to pull out the old crystal balls and tell us when we may as well go back to work, taking as much precaution as is practicable, and think optimistically that the next victim at work will be the deadwood standing between you and that promotion you've been after. Plan A being impractical, Plan B it is and don't worry, president Trump will be blamed for the resultant deaths regardless of their numbers.

In case you want to know how the dates and all are calculated, go here, where Mr Weinersmith has summed it up nicely in a 503 panel comic.

All this brings me to something I've been contemplating for a while: Let's consider the Kung Flu as a weapon. In this case a weapon that escaped the lab. Normally (?) if a country were developing a sickness, like anthrax or whatever, they would make it easily spreadable, rapidly effective, highly lethal, and with a vaccine to protect your own people. In some cases, lethality is not a requirement. If you can shoot a few shells of bugs over to the other side, then 2 days later simply take a leisurely walk over to where your enemies are convulsed on the ground unable to do anything else, than you have a good weapon. If the stuff spreads too quickly, it can affect people you wouldn't normally be fighting which may induce them to take more extreme measures against you. The Kung Flu seems to be a pretty good weapon, being able to quickly dispose of a large part of any nations economy in fairly short order whether the populace gets it or not. In our case it has effectively sunk one of our big aircraft carriers, keeping it out of the Taiwan straits just in time for some PRC saber rattling.

No word on any other military units it may have affected, but I have a hard time believing that it hasn't. Here, the Chinese are waging war with the weapons they have the most of, which is to say, people. Just as Reagan brought down the Soviet Union using our best weapon: Money. Star Wars forced the Russkies to Keep Up With The Jonses, which cost more than they could afford and they went broke. If the virus might kill 20% of everyones population, who does that leave as the winner? China.

As of today, I'm hearing stories that China, Russia, and Iran are all much closer to regime change than most people think.

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Anti-Virus Protection - Humor

The panic with which some people are taking the Kung Flu is creating both great hardship and at times great amusement. Here's some amusement.
Made from stuff I had lying around, starting with a space helmet made from an old Coors Party Ball with an air hose attached to the pump attachment. Anybody remember the Party Ball? I bought this one solely for the ball  itself. Took forever to drink about 2/3 of the beer, even with help from my friends. Eventually the last of the beer went flat and got tossed. The air hose was a necessity. Inside that helmet, the air gets stuffy fairly quickly.

 The small black square is a foam air filter from a small gas motor. Never used. At the bottom of the hose, there's a muffin fan from a computer to drive the air into the helmet

 The switch is to turn the fan on and off. I'm using 2 7.2V battery packs from RC toys to power the fan. Not very powerful, but good enough to keep the air in the helmet fresh.
Wouldn't be complete without the NASA worm on it. In this case that would stand for National Association of Squash Artillery. Yes, we've built pumpkin launching cannons as well.

Behind that imposing Imperial logo, are some holes to allow speaking in a threatening, echo-y tone.

A rig like this is becoming de rigeur at Wall Mart these days.

Is it for real? Well the helmet will keep my sneezes off of you, and the filter and long convoluted path will keep your cooties off of me so I guess it works.

One other thing: Don't wear hearing aids with this rig. The helmet induces really wretched feedback.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Fun With Headlines - What Price Trump?

From the WaPo today:

Giuliani, a familiar voice in Trump’s ear, promotes coronavirus treatments whose effectiveness has not yet been proved
In one-on-one phone calls with President Trump, former New York mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani has been touting the use of an anti-malarial drug cocktail that has shown some early promise in treating covid-19, but whose effectiveness has not yet been proved effective in valid clinical trials.
The Post is advocating for no treatments at all until the traditional FDA double-blind large format study can be completed and no doubt peer reviewed. This normally takes about 2 years and if the treatment in question works, leaves about as many participants dead (control group with placebo) as might be cured.
Of course the death toll from such a fiasco would be laid at Trumps feed, hopefully swaying the election results

The Post article is behind a paywall so no the headline link likely won't get you the whole story, but what there is here should pretty well sum it up. You have to wonder, if there were some disaster that the Donks could unleash on the country that would result in some significant number of deaths, but would arguably sway the election, how many dead would be an acceptable cost. I'm sure they would call the dead "martyrs" to the great and grand cause of saving the country.

Friday, April 3, 2020

More Music

I don't care if Monday's blue
Tuesday's grey and Wednesday too
Thursday I don't care about you
It's Friday I'm indoors

Monday you can fall apart
Tuesday, Wednesday break my heart
Thursday doesn't even start
It's Friday I'm indoors

Saturday wait
And Sunday always comes too late
But Friday never hesitate...

I don't care if Monday's black
Tuesday, Wednesday heart attack
Thursday never looking back
It's Friday I'm indoors

Originally done, appropriately enough, by The Cure

Thursday, April 2, 2020

NICS Checks - Now That's A Record!

We all knew there was a panic buying binge on guns, exacerbated by the government trying to use the virus as an excuse to shut down gun stores, and here's the result. I expect that any given month will be a bit higher than the same month the previous year, if only to account for population increases, but this really stands out:
I think this surpasses the Clinton panic of 2016.Don't know if the projection for the year will hold up or not, I suspect not, but it ought to cause the gun grabbers to fill their Depends at a similar rate, don't you think?

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Easter Eggs Found In Relief Bill

Congressional staffers tasked with reading the relief bill recently signed by President trump have found 2 line items that seemingly got by everyone while the bill was being passed from the House to the Senate.

The first item, found about 2/3 of the way through the 1000+ page bill, is a presidential order firing VP Pence and replacing him with Hillary Clinton.

The second item, about 20 line items further down, is the presidents official notice of resignation.

You Can't Make This Stuff Up

First off our Paper Of Record posts a story about how the school systems are agitating for an early return to school for the kids who, they are afraid, are not getting sufficient indoctrination via home schooling.

2 days or so later, today the Wall St Journal (paywall) has a story up noting that the educrats in Oregon, having shut down their public school system, are also trying to shut down a big online charter school as too many former public school children are trying to transfer into it. Unsurprisingly, their governor agrees.

Like Natalie and Lincoln, some 300 students successfully transferred in mid-March to Oregon Connections Academy alone, and the teacher’s unions were alarmed by this mass exodus from the public schools.Under pressure from the unions, the Oregon Department of Education stopped allowing transfers on March 27. At Oregon Connections Academy, this means some 1,600 students who had sought to transfer won’t be able to, says Jeff Kropf, the school’s founder and president of the board of directors.It could be worse. The state Department of Education originally contemplated closing down virtual public charters along with the brick-and-mortar schools, according to a March 24 PowerPoint presentation reviewed by the newspaper Willamette Week. Even during a national crisis, unions would rather deprive students of an education than see their charter-school competitors succeed.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Quarantine Blues

The latest from our governor (Governor Death) Polis implies that gun ranges should shut down.

Trump has declared that all firearm businesses including ranges are "essential services" so there's an argument for keeping them open. Matches, however are a voluntary gathering of some arbitrary number of people, probably greater than the arbitrary numbers declared locally to be "too large" so they could legitimately be cancelled.

Both of my ranges have been shut down until Apr 30. I have written the management to open them for individual use but no organized matches during that time.

Note that the burning of "Old West Incense" (I use Titegroup) can be considered as a prayer to Buddha (or someone) and is far more efficacious when done outdoors or at least in a place with a better ventilation system than our basements afford. Not to mention how much calmer our spouses remain.

Monday, March 30, 2020

QOTD - Possibly Of The Decade

From Sara Hoyt:
Actually this attitude has been pretty common here for the last 40 years that I remember. What's funny is that the Californians take it up about 10 minutes after crossing the state line. Oddly, they continue to vote for the same policies they were fleeing. Immigrants from Eastern Europe seem to vote against these ideas.

Friday, March 27, 2020

Kung Flu - The End Is In Sight

Getting past all the bloviating going on right now, here's what we know.

If you show any symptoms of the Kung Flu, a 5-day regimen of Hydroxychloroquine, azithromycin*, and maybe a zinc supplement will erase the symptoms and put you back in circulation. Scott Adams is referring to this pill combo as the Trump Pills in no small part to avoid having to remember the rather lengthy names involved.

At the same time, ventilators for the most severely affected are in short supply although American ingenuity has trotted out several cheap and easy to make versions. There are a couple of problems with this, first of all being the FDA who won't approve of the manufacture or sale of a medical devise without a long and detailed study for safety and efficacy which typically runs about 2 years if you include the review process. This means that anyone needing one of these ventilators will be long dead before they are allowed to use one, and by the way, the survival rate for people reduced to using a ventilator seems to be about 5% so you'd probably be dead soon enough even if you got one. To me this suggests that ventilators are probably the wrong tree to be sniffing up.

Doctors can prescribe pretty much anything for any purpose as long as the rewards outweigh the risks. As of right now, the evidence suggests that the Trump Pills (O.K. I hate spelling all that out even with cut-and-paste) are a sovereign solution to the problem, and side effects are well known and so insignificant that the stuff is sold over the counter in areas where Malaria is more common than the common cold. So how many do we need, and where are they?

Statistics from the Diamond Princess petri dish suggest that with little isolation, about 25% of an exposed population will catch the disease. The U.S. population is 330M give or take a few. That means we would have 82.5M people developing symptoms and needing treatment. The standard regimen so far has been to prescribe 200mg HOCQ and one of the others for 6 days to be cautious. HOCQ seems to come in 100mg tablets, so 12 pills times 6 days, times 82.5M is 990M pills. That's a lot of pills for something that heretofore has not been all that commonly used.

HOCQ is a synthetic chemical which means you need some precursor chemicals, and at minimum likely the major components of a brewery to mix and cook them. There are 2 companies in the U.S. that are currently making the stuff and I seriously doubt that they have the capacity to quickly crank out half a billion pills each in the next 2 weeks so there's the bottleneck as of today. India has a large population, is in the earths Malaria belt, and so uses a lot of the stuff. They have politely informed us that notwithstanding the prospect of someone making a LOT of money in a hurry, they will not be shipping us 100,000 Kg of it. At least not right away.

A number of companies worldwide make the HOCQ for human consumption. The link is to a list. AMRI company in the U.S. is a maker of the HOCQ. I have emailed them as to how hard the process is compared,say, to brewing beer. When I hear back from them, I'll add the answer.

*The antibiotic, azithromycin, seems to be related to penicillin so some people will have to use something else. The application in this case is pretty generic as the virus renders the body unable to deal with common bacteria which then take advantage of the break and attack with little or no resistance. It looks at this point like pretty much any antibiotic suitable for use against airborne bacterial infection would do the job. Antibiotics we can find.

QOTD - Guns

Found at onlygunsandmoney.com

"Unprecedented demand" is a reason to deny people the ability to exercise their RKBA? Like if too many people showed up to vote we could just suspend the election? https://twitter.com/WRALMikaya/status/1242536428329938944 

This in response to
BREAKING NEWS: Wake County Sheriff's Office just suspended ALL pistol permit applications due to "unprecedented demand for weapons." They will not reopen applications in Wake county until APRIL 30th. They say they've seen a 250% increase in demand.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Virus Update 2 - Private Effort

I'm fighting off fever with 2 4oz doses of tonic water per day. Today there was no tonic water on the shelves, so I bought DIET tonic water. Think about that for a bit. I'm surprised it wasn't dehydrated diet tonic water.

I'm sure our government, on both sides of the U.S. Iron Curtain, are doing their level best to address the virus problem. That not much seems to be getting done, and at a snails pace confirms to me that the government is on this problem at full force. If they were to try any harder, I don't doubt that everything would come to a complete halt and any relief we got would be the result of our own efforts including those expended avoiding arrest for doing something without the proper permissions.

Scott Adams asked if a ventilator could be ginned up that used the efforts of the younger, healthier folks to run it instead of some external power. Visualize a teeter totter, with an office seat ball under one end, and a virus sufferer under the other, connected by a piece of 2 inch flex hose. Now visualize 2 kids going up and down alternately inflating and deflating the ball and the patient. See? Easy solution and minimal cost.

Imagine a set of these, and the adults offering an attractive prize to the team whose patient lives the longest (dies last). Boggles the mind and incentivizes the rest of us to take all possible precautions to avoid winding up under a teeter-totter. Be FDA compliant by putting an equal number of the afflicted on gurneys along side, but with no breathing assistance. Keep careful notes and find someone with a PhD of some sort to act as the author of the ensuing paper to include a grant application to reproduce this study on a Caribbian island with a warmer climate and several cases of Corona on hand.

Further research is indicated.

Virus Update

A doctor in New York is reporting a 100% success rate using Hydroxychloroquine with a Zinc supplement without the antibiotic that's usually used. Pretty impressive results although his methodology doesn't quite meet the FDA standards in that no control group with placebos was included, thus no stack of dead bodies was included in the results.

Meantime, in the Ummah, imams are encouraging the kind of behavior that worked so well in the 1300's against the Black Plague.

In Iran the official line seems to have moved slightly from attributing the virus to the Jews (default) to attributing it to the Americans, and discouraging the population from accepting any help from Israel or the U.S. as it would probably be tainted with something. Also possible is that this discourages the peasants from noticing that some $1B in health measures aid, given to the Iranian government to help the Iranian people, seems to have miraculously vanished.

To conflate all this, I fully expect at least some Imams to begin preaching that the medication test, having been conducted by an Orthodox Jew, is of no value to Muslims and that no true Muslim would thus avail himself of the drugs which are a part of a Zionist plot.

Monday, March 23, 2020

QOTD - The Senate

This from the floor of the Senate during debate on the proposed economic relief bill from Sen. John N. Kennedy (R-LA):
“You know what the American people are thinking right now?” Kennedy inquired rhetorically. “They’re thinking that the brain is an amazing organ. It starts working in a mother’s womb and it doesn’t stop working til you get elected to Congress.”
Nailed it, Senator.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Fun With Headlines - Sick, Sick, Sick!

Perusing Drudge this morning and noted this story:
Alone no more: People are turning to dogs, cats and chickens to cope with self-isolation
Well, O.K. then, then I found this one a bit further down:
‘Naturally antibacterial:’ Sex doll companies trying to cash in on coronavirus
Slowly the small bulb over my head began to glimmer. The ghost of notorious cheapskate Jack Benny arose and pointed out that for the price of one of those fancy dolls, you can buy a lot of chickens....

Friday, March 20, 2020

QOTD - Presidential Wannabes

Slow Joe actually said this:
“They tell me there’s ways we can do teleconferencing via us all being in different locations,”   Joe Biden
And this fellow wants to be President of the U.S. and de facto leader of the free world?

Shutting Down Almost Everything

Gov Polis is setting Colorado up to become the Bernie Socialist Utopia by closing down all private businesses until they go broke or until the Kung Flu is officially declared extinct. At that point I suppose he'll either "nationalize" the then defunct businesses or buy them out at pennies on the dollar. I just can't wait to see who he appoints to the State board Of Tattoo Artists.

OTOH, has anyone at all seen a governor or Mayor offer to shut down the public transit system?

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Winter Sucks

So the 2.5" that was predicted 2 days ago has grown a bit.

I now have 7" on my car and more now predicted overnight. It's the heavy wet stuff and I had to hand shovel a path down the drive before I could run the blower (4.5hp!) down it and then I could only take about a 3" cut on each pass.

You can tell it's global warming because if this had been the usual fluffy stuff, it would have been 2 ft deep.

Official Notice: 2020 Cancelled

This from D'Wifes relatives down under:
Works for me. The election would be over with the expected outcome and none of the hassle.