Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Libertarian Leanings

Following the lead of Say Uncle, I gave the Libertarian purity test a whirl. Uncle scored 80%. I got 65%:
51-90 points: You are a medium-core libertarian, probably self-consciously so. Your friends probably encourage you to quit talking about your views so much.
Which is probably a fair assessment. I have a fairly low opinion of government in general, as my friends and readers may have noted, but I'm convinced that the Libertarians are the party of reducto ad absurdum for their ability to take perfectly good ideas, and carry them to their last logical extreme, then run them over the cliff from a Roadrunner movie.

Political parties tend to be run by the extremists, and the Libertarians organizational abilities are second to nobodies. This pretty much assures that the sympathetic will be deterred from joining. The Tea Party, by contrast, has no leadership, merely a generalized animosity toward big government, very much like the Libertarians, but without the high-ranking whack jobs. Fastest growing group in the country right now.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Future of Transportation, Micros

Gordon Murray, designer of the Maclaren F1 and super cars has a proposal for a city car for the crowded urban environment. The T-25 seats the driver on the centerline of this rolling jellybean, and will seat 2 very friendly passengers in the back seat. Go here to see all the details, including seating arrangements on slide 4 of 5.

Featuring a 600cc engine, and a top speed electronically limited to 80 mph, this is 60% of what it would take to get me to consider one. I'd give it 20% more if the rear seating were eliminated and the rear axle replaced with a single tire. The rather marginal performance is then traded for an all-weather motorcycle, free from most Federal nannyisms and qualified to use the HOV lanes in winter.

Is this dangerous? Sure, but then I ride a 2-wheeler regularly that has no air bags or crash protection whatsoever. This thing weighs 1200 lbs, and has 2 air bags. A commuter car needs to seat only one person, and a bit of luggage, that being all 90% of the cars on the road actually carry. You'd think that an engineer who designs single-seat vehicles for a living could make this connection.

Hate Crimes

That favorite blunt instrument of the left is now in the hands of the right. A stated opposition to an established right, qualifies as a hate crime.

Guess who now qualifies?

Although I admit to having some suspicions as to the author of this update.

Monday, June 28, 2010

MacDonald v Chicago

In a 5-4 decision, the court today ruled that the Second Amendment means exactly what it says, subject only to minor restrictions viz felons and the insane.

It's been a long time coming, and the remaining skirmishes will still be fought, but for now it looks like the good guys won. The left, of course, sees it differently:
Justice Stephen G. Breyer objected to the majority decision, and read his dissent from the bench. He disagreed with the majority that it is a fundamental right, and said the court was restricting state and local efforts from designing gun control laws that fit their particular circumstances, and turning over all decisions to federal judges. Joining him with dissenting votes were John Paul Stevens, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor. Stevens wrote his own dissent and did not join Breyer's.
I remember the '50s, and this sort of argument brings back memories of George Wallace standing in the school house door, screaming for "states rights". Indeed, most gun control laws come down to a racist root in the end anyway. The inherent rights of a U.S. citizen were gone over in great detain in the Derd Scott case in which it was decided that Mr. Scott could not possibly be a U.S. Citizen because, according to Justice Taney:
It would give to persons of the negro race, ...the right to enter every other State whenever they pleased, ...the full liberty of speech in public and in private upon all subjects upon which its own citizens might speak; to hold public meetings upon political affairs, and to keep and carry arms wherever they went.
Which sort of suggests that anyone, of any extraction, who is not permitted the right to arms, is not actually a full citizen of the country.

I have seen at least one report calling this decision "the last battle of the Civil War" and that may well be an accurate assessment. All that's left now is the mopping up actions, but don't let your guard down, and, to coin a phrase, "keep your powder dry".

Fittingly, the last Confederate civil war veteran died today without ever conceding defeat. R.I.P. Robert C. Byrd, (D-KKK).

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Quote of the Month

Here's the latest pronouncement from the golfer-in-chief from the G20 meeting in Canada:

"A strong and durable recovery also requires countries not having an undue advantage," Obama told journalists at the end of G20 talks in Canada.
Barry, old boy, the function of a national government is to assure that ones country has every conceivable advantage over it's neighbors. You can fairly easily tell if your government is doing its job by asking yourself, "Would I rather live here, or next door."

Places with (relatively) competent governments have little problem with this. South Africa, I'm sure, has no desire to be more like Zimbabwe, nor does South Korea look to North Korea for anything beyond a bad example.

If Obama succeeds in getting the U.S. to the point that we have no "undue advantage" over Mexico, I suppose that would solve the illegal immigration problem. The problem with that is that it would cut in to the Dems voting constituencies noticeably.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Gunney Report

Went to the club 3-gun match today, and found out that if nothing untoward happens, I shoot reasonably well.

Specifically, if I wear the right pair of glasses, I can hit a 14 x 18" steel human silhouette at 200 yards with iron sights. That stage had a standard of "shoot until you get 3 hits" then move on to the next stage. Took me 7 shots, which was less than quite a few 'scoped rifle shooters took.

Did that with my Hi Point carbine. Nice little gun, that.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Gun News

John Stossel has a piece up here suggesting that Chicagoans need more guns, presumably to defend themselves. Last weekend, for example, some 54 people were reported shot, with eight eventually assuming room temperature.

Not a lot of detail on the circumstances surrounding the shootings, but it's a safe assumption that a not insignificant percentage of the "victims" probably had it coming. That said, I would say that based on the level of gunfire there, the residents don't need more guns as much as they need more range time.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


I try to get at least one post a day up here as a service to that part of the public who drops by, and thank you all for doing so. Lately I've been deluged at work, lots of overtime, and what seems like an extended chore list.

Or maybe it's just summertime slacker syndrome. It's not like there's a shortage of affronts to rant about.

Did you know that Ken Salazars moratorium on deepwater drilling includes a carve-out for BP? Why yes. BP is allowed to keep the 3 or 4 relief rigs they have in place around their now-famous gusher, and everyone else is expected to up stakes and go home.

Big Brother

He's watching you, on the sidewalk, on the street, in the intersection, in the stores. The argument goes that if you're doing nothing illegal, then you have nothing to fear. Right.

For the watchers, however, the rules seem to be somewhat different. Try to record a cop on duty, and you can face felony wiretapping charges in some states, and a felony charge of simply recording a policeman in at least three now.

Many police cars have built-in cameras on their dashboards, and some jurisdictions are looking in to having cameras mounted on the cops shoulders. These things sometimes produce useful information, such as the falling-down drunk condition of a stopped driver. On the other hand, when dubious conduct is suggested, the tapes have a way of getting lost in the evidence room.

I don't know why the sensitivity on the part of the police. After all, if you're not doing anything illegal, you have nothing to fear.


Everyone is dissing the general for dissing the CinC in probably the only news source he actually reads, but I believe I see a method in this. McChrystal is in the position of running a war under conditions that guarantee his failure. No matter what he does, the administration has already scheduled a pullout date which the enemy need only wait patiently for.

Publicly pointing this out and getting fired for it is only a moderate discomfort for McChrystal, he can no doubt find a position in industry that pays significantly more than he's making now. It embarrasses and weakens the President at no extra charge. Sure, McChrystal is a bit young to be retiring, but then so was Eisenhower.

Monday, June 21, 2010


Here's an article that suggests that the more homogeneous the student body, the better the results. I was already familiar with the phenomenon here in the form of all-girls or all-boys schools, but apparently the effect is fairly wide reaching. The sole exception to this is the Islamic schools, which, in spite of being single sex and single religion, fall at the bottom of the curve.

I suppose there's a limit to what you can teach with only one textbook.

Quote of the Month

I won't give it Quote of the year yet, the year is only half over and there's an election coming up when we can expect some real doozys, but here's a nice start:
“The problem is, . . . if we secure the border, then you all won’t have any reason to support ‘comprehensive immigration reform.’”
Barack H. Obama
We all know what "comprehensive immigration reform" is. That's where, with great fanfare, lasting weeks, during which time most of the population of Mexico rushes north, everybody is given a free citizenship in the U.S. and a voter registration card or two.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Blow Up The World Report

A fun event for everyone, from the smallest kids, about 5 or 6, to the oldest coots.

Food turned out to be a large Styrofoam cup containing, in this order, mashed potatoes, beans, pulled pork, spicy sausage slices, Cole slaw, and barbecue sauce as topping. This combo works really well, and actually has a name, which I have forgotten.

Speaking of forgetting, I managed to forget the camera, the mortar chambered for the golf balls, my club badge, the box of clay birds, and extra applications of sunblock.

What was fun was thinking, as I load stuff into the truck, "How many of your guns require you to check the tire pressure before a trip to the range?"

Testing, testing. OK, start with a 1 quart oil bottle, with all the oil carefully removed. Drill a 1/8" hole through the cap, and push a 3 inch length of cannon fuse 1/4 inch through it. Seal the fuse with silicone goo. when dry, set the cap aside, and fill the bottle with water in a bucket. Invert the bottle, and bubble in a stoichiometric* mix of Oxygen and Acetylene from your gas welder**. Lift bottle from bucket, and quickly screw on the cap.

Take bottle outdoors, lay on ground, light fuse, and get away***.

So many of our nations traditions have been stolen from us by the nanny state, it's good to know how to get some of them back.

* Stoichiometric: A mix of chemicals, exactly sufficient to the expected reaction. In this case, set up your torch with gas, and only just enough oxygen to just barely get rid of the last trace of yellow in the flame.

** You don't have one? Were you looking for an excuse to get one? Here you go.

*** Minimum distance for these is 30 feet. Ask me how I know.

These things, when made from balloons, are static sensitive. If you make up a box full for someones football party, or some such, DO NOT transport the box in the back seat of your car. Click the link to find out why not.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

I Can See November

When a Republican candidate can grow a big brass pair and let 'em clank, he (or she, they're metaphorical) can get elected. Here's a fellow who knows how to yank chains and push buttons. He should go far:

Thanks to Wizbang for this one.

Space, the Final Frontier

The Japanese Hyabusa spacecraft returned to earth yesterday. Tamera, in a bout of prescience notes:

RX: "The Hayabusa? That Japanese asteroid probe you were just talking about? Apparently NASA was watching it come back."

Me: "What, to make sure it wasn't being followed?"
Turns out she was right, it was.

One Man, One Vote

This is just so passe. Even Chicago where a metabolism is optional, can't top this:
A federal judge actually ruled that the whiteness of the people who win democratic elections is in itself a violation (of the Voting Rights Act). If the six votes per voter trick doesn't prevent Caucasians from getting elected, they might cut to the chase and impose a racial quota system for public office holders.
The mind boggles.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Strong Horse

In most of the world, by now, national leaders have figured out that the U.S. president is a political lightweight, even flyweight, who has no idea what he's doing.

Karzai in Afghanistan is now willing to negotiate with the Taliban.
In Pakistan, where they know who the Taliban are, and what they're like to deal with, they've started a major push to crush them while the crushing's good.
Taiwan is trying to make nice with mainland China in hopes of forestalling an invasion.
North Korea is off on another screaming fit, threatening the South with nuclear annihilation if their rice allowance isn't raised. The South, on the other hand, doesn't seem to be buying into this line like they used to. China is sending signals that if the two want to finally settle their differences, they're willing to sit it out. No profit in going to war with your best customer, after all.
France and Germany are facing economic reality now that the U.S. is becoming Europeanized to the point that our economy no longer bolsters theirs.

It's even taking hold locally as Arizona moves unilaterally to enforce Federal immigration law, Louisiana moves unilaterally to build the sand dams necessary to prevent oil from coming ashore, and New Jersey, in the form of Governor Christie, is telling the unions that the free ride is over.

California has been gerrymandered into a Blue state to the point it would probably remain Blue even if the Dems started holding public human sacrifices. Still, polls suggest that if Arizona's immigration law were put up as a referendum, it would pass handily.

Texas is considering their own version of the Arizona law. Texas being Texas, I rather expect this to pass sooner or later.

Several states have passes firearms freedom laws, exempting locally built and sold firearms from federal law. The attorney-general has frowned on this, but even he's not being taken all that seriously.

I guess this might be the American version of a Velvet Revolution, in which the states, one after another, simply chose to ignore an increasingly irrelevant federal government, recognizing that if you want anything done, you need to do it yourself.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

The Future Of Democracy

In South Carolina, anyway, some of you may be familiar with the story of the victory of Alvin Greene, an unemployed, unfunded, candidate who held no rallies or appearances. Additionally, it turns out he's being investigated on felony obscenity charges.

I have a solid position on obscenity: I'm for it. In S.C., however, the state sees it differently.

There was a great deal of speculation as to how this fellow won, including the note that he was black, while his opponent was white. I presume then that the district was one of those carve-outs that give the local black population their very own representative, thus freeing the white pols from having to listen to them.

Anyway, after the counting up and the bookkeeping is done, it seems the number of votes received failed to equal the number of votes cast in 86 of 88 precincts. If this had been a general election, and the Dem candidate had won, this would not raise a single eyebrow. Since this was a Democratic primary, and the party favorite lost, you bet there's some interest in this.

More on this here.

Be interesting to see how it plays out. Coming soon to a voting booth near you.

I'm A Bad Person

You probably are too, so go here, and take the quiz. I got 601/800 and qualify as some kind of enemy of the state.

+551 to +800 G-points = Non-person

You and your life's work are barred from being mentioned in media publications. Ineligible for re-education. After the Revolution subject to Revolutionary Tribunal Che Guevara style (shot in the head without trial). Everyone you ever came in contact with has been contaminated and is therefore also guilty. We will find them, too. You are all incorrigible corporate war-mongering Zionist terrorists; the people will continue to resist your capitalist attacks by any and all means.

Only a couple of things keep me from being completely hopeless. Where I work, the only reason English is spoken is because nobody there can speak all 25 of the other languages the employees normally speak.

The other thing is probably my membership in the Million Moms March Meetup group in Denver. I've been a member since they formed, and will be until they throw me out. By the way, did you know they have 6 members in the Denver Metro area? Counting me? I'm thinking of offering an introductory firearms class to any interested fellow members.

Monday, June 7, 2010


With the departure of the U.S. from the global playground, some of the resident kiddies are becoming large enough in their own minds to start thinking of rectifying some borders, paying back some debts, or simply correcting the destined order of succession.

In North Korea, L'il Kim was apparently preparing to name one of his sons as heir-apparent, when one of his close allies died at the untimely age of 80 in a car accident. To me this seems suspicious. A car accident? In North Korea? Where did they find the second car?

According to pundits who follow the goings-on in N.K. this is a big upset to the planned succession, since L'il Kim needed all the help he could get to make his continuation of the dynasty stick. Makes you wonder if sinking that South Korean patrol boat was done to yank the military's leash at a time when some brigadier might be thinking of a regime change.

Over in the Med, the Turks, being more impressed with the Iranians than the Americans, have offered a military escort of the next ship attempting to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza. I expect this will end badly for the Turks, and the next move is for Turkey, who is a member of NATO, to run to the rest of NATO, that being western Europe, except France, plus the U.S., pointing out that the NATO charter says that an attack on one is an attack on all, so everybody, U.S. included, is now obliged to go to war with Turkey against Israel.

I'm not seeing that go over very well, as right now, nobody in Europe has either the inclination or the budget to go to war. The U.S. 6th fleet is also in a position to interpose itself between the erstwhile combatants and inform them both that there will be no war today, and tomorrow isn't looking very good either. This presupposes that someone from the pentagon informs the CinC that the only thing worse than having an oil spill named after him would be having a war named after him.


I had gotten two squirrels up to yesterday, and was becoming convinced that the squirrel trap was like using antibiotics to produce super bugs. I had a new squirrel, a real aggressive one, who, when the dog barked at him, would bark back most scornfully.

I saw him dive into the pipe of the trap, holding on with his back feet, scoop out the peanut butter, and enjoy the snack on the fence. Had he noticed me noticing him, I'm sure he would have mooned me. I'm pretty sure he actually fell in once, but managed to get out somehow.

Solution: Put the peanut butter about an inch lower in the pipe. Checked today, and I've got twofers. Thinning the squirrel population is like digging a foxhole in a pond. While I'm emptying the trap, the dog is barking at the next one over on the other side of the lawn. Too bad the urban squirrels taste like the trash they eat.


I've got tinnitus. I've got a really good case of it too. the high-pitched squeal that goes on loudly 24/7. Can't imagine where it might have come from, although the guns, fireworks (homemade and commercial), rock music, motorcycles, hotrods, and whatnot may have contributed.

Anyway I hear on the radio a commercial for pills to fix this, and look up the advertised product on the net, only to find a near universal scorn for the product. About that same time, the wife brings home a bottle of pills that claim to be able to fix the problem, and I look at the ingredient list. These things look like they were made from store-wide floor sweepings from Vitamin Cottage.

I'm sure there's stuff in there that's good for me somehow, but when the ingredient list gets to be that long, it's a pretty good bet the manufacturer is groping in the dark, hoping to get lucky. I'll take these even though I have little faith in their efficacy. It's the thought that counts, and who knows, I might get lucky.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Musical Interlude

Not much going on right at the moment, and frankly I'm exhausted just thinking about the weekend. I love classical music. It's uplifting, inspiring, and the sort of thing you'd put on your Ipod to play while strolling through the Casbah, machine-gunning everything, whether it moves or not.

Minor items of minor interest to note while listening:
The Norks seem to have invented an organic drink that makes you younger and smarter. Speculation is that it's beer.

Point a camera at a cop, and if you survive the experience, you may get up to 14 years in jail. Geez, you'd think they had something to hide, or something.

We all know the MSM is in something of a decline, having given up reporting the news in favor of repeating press releases without checking any of them. The administration proposes: “Potential Policy Recommendations to Support the Reinvention of Journalism,”.
They already seem to own it, I suppose they can do whatever they want, and pay for it by taxing your Ipad.

Hope you find the music soothing. Grouchy Old Cripple had this, and more.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Gun Fun 4

Random Nuclear Strikes is hosting this months postal match in the Mr. Completely series. Playing pool, we are, and your choice of odds or evens. He sets it up as primarily for pistols, but if rifle shooters enter, a class will be created.

I shot this one once at 100 yards with my .223 varmint rifle, and got 9 out of 10.

Blogger doesn't like pdf files, so go here and download target 20001.

The Nashville folks have posted the results from their last match, and have the next one up, which is a fund raiser for the flooded out folks in Nashville.
Making the best of a bad situation, here's an example of the target and how it's to be scored:
Go here, and read all the details, and get the actual target.

Cops Make It Up As They Go Along

Court says that's fine. In Ohio anyway, you were going as fast as the cop says he thought you were going, no independent verification required.

Somebody notify Governor Strickland: To balance your states budget, simply mail a speeding ticket to every licensed driver in the state, say 10 over the limit, or whatever will bring in the required bucks. They can't contest it.

Show them what a swell fellow you are by giving them a kiss while slipping them the Kielbasa: No points off your license since it was an undocumented infraction.

2% of all revenues raised should be sent to me for the intellectual property use.

Crooks Vote to Restrict Cops

The congressional Black Caucus has introduced legislation to de-fang the Office of Congressional Ethics. The fact that the Caucus has drawn more than its fair share of attention wouldn't have anything to do with it now would it?

Come on folks! This is the year of the Chicago Way. If the Ethics committee is breathing down your back, see to it that a bag full of campaign contributions lands on the committee members desks. After all the purpose of the money was to get you in and keep you there, so spread some of that wealth around.

Among other things the legislation would:
It would prevent the standards committee from taking a referral from the ethics office within 60 days before an election in which the subject of the case is a candidate.
This alone is a candidate for a new definition for chutzpah if ever I saw one.

Israel and the Fleet

I generally admire the Israelis, they're nice, clever, tough, and when they put they're minds to it, impressively devious. At some point they will have to admit, though, that the current U.S. president is not on their side, and anything he says can be safely ignored. Everyone else has figured this out by now, so join the club.

The next ships to set sail for Gaza, full of humanitarian aid, should be torpedoed in the dead of night by one of those clever little submarines they have, several of which are currently minding their own business over in the Persian Gulf.

Press releases can be immediately sent out decrying the unfortunate early detonation of some of the aid being carried, and mentioning how dangerous it is to carry such stuff.

Howls of indignation, of course, will be heard all over the middle east. Just like any other day, but when the neighborhood cop quits walking the beat, you're on your own.