Monday, September 28, 2015

Jury Duty

Went in for jury duty today fully prepared to do my duty for my fellow man. They had 3 or 4 cases to be heard, one of which was a civil suit which was expected to run possibly as long as 2 weeks. The others were projected to last 2-3 days. I got picked to go into the pool for the long one along with about 90 others.

10 or so begged off up front. In preliminary selection 20 were pulled to sit in the jury box and be questioned by first the judge, then the lawyers. As people were eliminated for one reason or another, all good to my observation, they were replaced by folks from the remaining 60. I got to replace someone in the first go-around which put me into the finals.

Eventually they got to 20 people with no up front disqualifications which included me, and the lawyers huddled to pick eight of us to sit the trial. After a good deal of passing paper back and forth, the lawyers agreed on the eight and the judge read the list. Surprisingly to me, I wasn't on it.

The case was a medical malpractice suit involving hematomas, CAT scans, and the interpretations of the scans. Having had a hematoma and a CAT scan and having been shown the scan and given the interpretation of same by my doctor probably disqualified me from listening to other peoples interpretations, at least to someones satisfaction, so back to work on tooling for a Vietnamese factory.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Deer Problem

Michigan, specifically Ann Arbor, has a problem with the local whitetail deer population, it having no natural predators except the automobile, and notwithstanding the legendary prowess of Michigan deer hunters.

Government officials, who unfortunately seem to run the town have hit upon hiring professional sharpshooters to attempt to thin the urban herd. The theory goes one shot to the head and hide the body before the local PETA chapter gets wind of the deed.

This may have worked for Jimmy Hoffa, but the deer probably won't let someone in a dark suit saunter up behind them and put a round from a suppressed .22 pistol into their heads. Deer have much better situational awareness than that.

This is a job for a new old classic, the DeLile silent carbine.
Sneak up on the deer, and pfffft! the animal falls to the ground and the PETA people are convinced it had a heart attack or something. Queue the bambilance to pick up the body, and Voila!, one less pesky deer.

Gun Fun

I haven't forgotten much since last month and even got through the whole match without duffing a single stage although there were a couple spots that could have gone smoother. As usual there were a couple of stages for which the back story could have been a LOT better.

One stage involved 7 targets and 3 no-shoots arranged in varying degrees of non-verticality which I immediately labeled the "Irish Yoga" stage as it resembled nothing so much as closing time at O'Mally's pub.

The other was described as a large gang invasion of a department store with targets down every aisle. It was probably the most confusing as to what you should shoot and in what order of all the stages there. I labeled this one the "Lost In The Woods" stage for the ducking, bobbing, and weaving you had to do just to get through the maze of it.

Following the match we got out the chroney and the EBR and found that my .40 S&W "Cowboy Action" loads were delivering the 165 gr bullets at 825 FPS for a power factor of 136. Jargon, jargon, it's good enough for IDPA and doesn't hurt my hands.

The EBR was delivering 3200 fps from my varmint reloads and produced a one-ragged-hole sized group, admittedly at short range. Still, that equates to an adequately small group at 100 yards. Next time I'll remember to bring some 100 yard targets and the spotting scope.

Par for the course: The longer you spend at the range, the longer the list of things you should have brought but didn't gets.

Friday, September 25, 2015


Some high-school doof in Colorado Springs has been arrested for calling in bomb threats to some high schools in Nevada and California. Seems he has a bit to learn about securely hiding his home phone number when doing this. The local media is calling this a "swatting incident" apparently having a bit to learn about the difference between filing a false report, which is what was done, and SWATting.

SWATting involves filing a false report on a specific person in such a way as to leave the authorities thinking that this person is a clear and present danger to the lives of anyone near them including the responding police. When the call is sufficiently embellished, this can lead to a response in force by a bunch of understandably nervous men with guns. The response alone is a clear and present danger to the lives of anyone near them including bystanders and has resulted in the shooting death of an innocent shopper at a Wal Mart.

Election season is upon us and it certainly wouldn't hurt to suggest to the wannabe martinets that elevating SWATting to a serious felony would be met with general approval and could be presented as not only pro-gun but also pro gun safety to the antis.

Gun Fun

IDPA match out at CRC this weekend where I get to see if I've forgotten anything in the last month or so since I was out last. Shooting buddy just got his eyes Lasiked so it's my turn to drive and see if I can do the 144 mile round trip without getting a chip in my brand new windshield.

I also get to run a few rounds through the new EBR to see how that's working out. Report due Saturday night or Sunday.

You Say You Want A Revolution?

There are two ways to go about this. One is the quick, frequently violent, and bloody way which has as its advantage that it's frequently over for better or worse fairly quickly. You can tell its over when all the principals on one side are dead. If that list didn't include you, then you won.

The other way is the "velvet" type which has the advantage of not being so violent and the disadvantage of sometimes taking an inordinately long time. You can tell when this one's over when all the principals on one side are dead, usually of old age. Hopefully this will happen before you pass on of similar causes. It also leaves open the question of who actually won.

Better late than never I guess, it looks like the Tea Party wing is making progress after all with Speaker Boehner's resignation announcement.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Data Management

When I went in for my CCW interview, the big stumbling block was the high-tech all electronic fingerprint machine which seemed to have a very difficult time finding a match between any one fingerprint and the four-finger set. The nice lady eventually got the machine to recognize me and I jokingly told her that if anything went wrong, she could get the backup set from the Chinese.

I was right.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

High Chinese Labor Costs Drive Chinese Manufacturing Toward Robots.

In an article here from ABC news, it is reported that in an effort to contain costs and improve quality, Chinese manufacturers are being encouraged to use more robots. This includes descriptions of robots working alongside humans on factory floors.

One supposes that the Chinese robots will be equipped with multiple cameras, one to watch what it's doing and one or more to watch its human co-workers. Errors on the part of the humans will be reported as disloyalty to management, and after 3 such reports the human will be replaced by another robot.

The robots loyalty is, of course, unquestioned. Lau Hu Chow*, CEO of China's East Wind Robotic software company is now widely expected to become China's new premiere shortly after president Xi gets his new robot secretary installed.

*Translates as "Old Tiger Joe", a tribute to one of my former instructors.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Elio Returns

Kind of short notice, but if you're itching to see the car and get your picture taken sitting in it  The next Denver area appearance will be September 19-20: Denver, CO; Flat Iron Crossing, One West Flat Iron Crossing Dr. Broomfield, CO; Sat – 10 am – 9 pm, and Sun 11 am – 6 pm;

This time they will have the P4 on view. Bring your own camera.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Letting The Media Pick The Candidates

One more thing* on this topic. If this isn't the classic example of the Cuckoo I ever saw, I don't know what is. Think of the media as the cuckoo and Mr Trump as the egg. At this point the hatchling is industriously pushing the other chicks out of the nest. 

OTOH it doesn't speak well of the others that they're having this big a problem with him, even with the support he's getting from the press.

*l'esprit d'escalier ("staircase wit")

Letting The Media Pick The Candidates

Here we go again in a re-run of every election in the last 20-30 years or so in which the media has discovered that the citizens don't actually have to count since they can in effect pick the candidates in the upcoming elections for us.

On the left, we have a collection of septuagenarian Socialists, one of which should arguable be cooling her heels in a federal prison even as we watch. This is the preferred candidate of the media, so no transgressions on her part will be reported. Period. Unless the word somehow gets out with phrases like "unethical behavior", "national security breach", or "solicitation of bribes in return for favors".  Other candidates are page 125, below the fold, and mixed in with the obituaries.

On the right, in the face of the strongest bench the GOP has fielded in 50 years, all attention is being directed to a know-nothing blowhard whose name is, dare I say, Trumpeted in the news, always the lede, front page, both above AND below the fold. Guess who the left thinks would be easiest to beat. Meantime the better more experienced candidates get moved to the back page of the paper, or not mentioned at all on the TV. Predictably the blowhard is moving up in the polls and the better candidates are having trouble raising money.

The media does this every election and as predictably as the sun rising in the East, as soon as the nomination is secured, all the praise will disappear and the candidate will be portrayed as the devil incarnate. So what to do about that? Beats me. Maybe we're just doomed to getting the government other people deserve.

Dating Drones

A teenagers worst nightmare.

 Also the reason more young people are taking up the shooting sports.

From Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Ghost Ring Sights

The Pay Pal button on the left will let you order a ghost ring sight from me. The button is an experiment and I don't know if it will work or not. Keeping my fingers crossed as this is my first experience with PP.

UPDATE: It works. I need to tweak it to allow multiple purchases though. Maybe tomorrow. The sight will work with most Ruger adjustable sights. All Mk models, Black and red hawks, GP revolvers and PC 9 and 10 carbines.

UPDATE: It works. So buy a sight and become a better shooter.

Clinton Gun Control

Two mistakes combined to make Bill Clinton the most respected Democrat to be elected president in the previous 50 years. First was his wife's' getting caught trying to organize nationalized health care behind closed doors. The second was the passage of the Assault weapons Ban of 1994. The two of them resulted in the Republicans controlling the House and the Senate for the next 6 years. Prevented from implementing any of his party's favorite programs, he wound up looking not so bad if you ignore the "Bimbo eruptions".

What he wanted was quite a bit more serious. Disturbing even. The administration supported frivolous lawsuits against gun makers and sellers in hopes of either bankrupting them or effectively nationalizing them to be run as the government saw fit. In 2000 Smith and Wesson, then under British ownership conceded to the Clintons and agreed to most of their demands. The resultant boycott reduced the value of the company to about 10% of its original value.

The stuff that S&W agreed to would only have been the beginning. Found at Arms and the Law, is a link to a pdf (6 pages) from the Clinton library detailing what Bill and Co. had in mind for the firearms industry. The first link is a summary and makes for easy reading. The pdf goes into detail with legal jargon. If you can get past the legalese, the details are horrendous. All this was to be put into effect as a result of lawsuits rather than legislation which Bill recognized he could never get passed.

The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act of 2005 largely put a stop to the frivolous lawsuits but keep the contents in mind should Bills Designated Heir actually get elected.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Trump Ignores NYT, Raises His Numbers

Here's a new headline:

Remember this when an otherwise liberal newspaper such as the Times or the Denver Pest gives advice to Republicans; Those papers would sell their daughters to ISIS before letting a Republican win an election. Trump did not move leftward to win those black votes, and he did not come out in favor of legalizing illegal immigrants to pick up those Hispanics.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Bike To Work

Having the day off I decided to try the route. With the ride to work having the big uphill pull it took 1-1/2 hours. Turning around and coming back took 2 hours although in all fairness if this were a bike to work day, I'd have 9 hours of desk rest in between the trips.

So I can do it, and faster than the RTD says the light rail can (1 hr, 40 min) although by now I'm pretty sure RTD's number is wrong. Whatever. I'll stick with the motorcycle in the summer and the car when I have to in the winter (30 minutes each way).

FWIW the trip involves dropping down to the river, then climbing up the other side. Home to work, that's 239 ft down followed by 597 ft up with each leg being about 9 miles long. Or as Jeff the Cyclist says, such a trifling ride as not to be worth putting on the spandex for.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

September E-Postal - There Will Be Math!

Dave is carrying both the August and the September matches but the August match ends this weekend so you have until Monday PM for that one.
Here's the September target;
Note that the high-scoring zones are on the outside as are the X-rings. Instructions are printed on the target and certain combinations of hits allow for doubling of your score. Doubling can happen multiple times and  the theoretical top score is 12,800 pt.

You will probably spend more time scoring this target than you do shooting it but hey, we all need the mental gymnastics to keep us sharp, right?

Friday, September 4, 2015

Finding Prince Charming

Conservative Review has a breakdown on the myriad candidates on the Republican side of next years electoral scrum. To simplify their chart using an unweighted system of +1 for green, -1 for red and 0 for yellow and sorted high to low:

Cruz     10
Jindall 6
Paul     6
Rubio     6
Walker     4
Perry     3
Carson     0
Kasich     -1
Trump     -1
Huckabee -2
Santorum -2
Bush     -4
Christie -6
Fiorina -7
Graham     -8
Average    0.27

I still prefer a governor as a presidential candidate. The top people here are good on the issues, but don't present well coming I suppose from long experience at getting along. Trump is PT Barnum on crack as a presenter if a bit weak on the issues.

The popularity polls like Gallup are more influenced by presentation than positions on the issues as long as the candidate doesn't come out too strongly in favor of something disgusting. Hence we have Trump, Carson, and Fiorina holding down the top 3 places.

One would expect that convention delegates would be more strongly influenced by the candidates positions on the issues than the average registered voter. One would also hope that the issues candidates would learn something from the presentation people between now and then. Prince Charming was 1: a Prince and 2: Charming. Prince Dishwater didn't get the fair maid.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Public Service

The lady next door is an IT whiz for Comcast and in return for some work for a friend, was given a motorcycle. An '82 Yamaha Seca 400.
Nice bike. It looked like this back in '82, but it's had a hard life and now sports a Virago tank and a lot of tie wraps and wire. Pull the carbs and clean the jets and lo and behold it fires right up. The lady wants to ride it of course but has never driven a motorcycle of any size before so I get to be the instructor. I've done this before and haven't lost a student yet, so off we go, starting with the start-and-stop drills. So far this is going well enough as she gets the hang of the controls.

Next I'll have her use 2nd gear on purpose and try to keep the bike on her own side of the street. She plans to take the formal course as soon as it's offered again here locally but doesn't want to be the least knowledgeable student in the class.

There are 2 times when you're most likely to have an accident on a motorcycle: First is in the first month when you don't know what you're doing. Second is at about the six-month mark when you get to thinking you do.

Busy Day

Shortly after getting back from GBR and while still in a weakened dtate, a friend of mine sent me a note about a "daily deal" from Palmetto State Armory on a Bag-O-AR-Parts, just add lower receiver. Since I had won a lower at GBRIX , and it had been looking lonely, I bit. After all it was a $570 bag on sale for $400. It took me about 2 hours to assemble the parts which involved watching a bit of a how-to video then going downstairs to install the 2 or 3 parts, then back up to the 'puter for the next 2 minutes. Here's the result:

A big help here was that the upper receiver came pre-assembled. The Mag-Pul furniture is not actually gray, but a uniform black. I topped it with a 4X scout scope I had lying about in need of a home although that may well become a red dot at some point. I don't know.

Same day I finished this I got a call from the Arapahoe County Sheriff to come pick up my card. Elapsed time: 61 days. Could have been better, could have been worse. I'm not complaining, just observing.

With the above 2, the gun snobs can now quit sneering at my Hi Point and come read my blog. Now with fewer cooties.

The topper was getting back from the Sheriff's office and finding a jury summons in the mail. Man, those guys don't waste any time at all now do they.