Friday, August 31, 2018

Scrubbing The Clinton Legacy

Way, way back when, the California legislature decided that if coal MUST be burned in their state, it would have to be as free as possible of any impurities like sulfur. When the law was passed, there was only one source for coal that met California's standards, and that was in Indonesia. The mine was owned by one James Riady who quickly became rich as monopoly coal supplier to California.

A few years later, around 1990, another deposit of the stuff was located, this time conveniently in southern Utah. Before any mining action could begin, an election year reared its ugly head, and Mr. Riady found it expeditious to donate generously to the Clinton campaign. Indirectly of course. President Clinton then decided that a large patch of Southern Utah needed to be designated a national monument, so we got the Grand Staircase National Monument. Within its boundaries, mining activities were forbidden. One presumes the Riadys were grateful.

Forward to today when the Trump administration announces it thinks we have probably more national monument land under the Federal thumb then is really necessary, and cuts a chunk of Grand Staircase loose. Almost immediately a coal company announces it will be opening mining operations in the newly freed up area. No one has specifically said that the mine would be in the Clinton-Riady enclave, but at this point it's the way to bet. No more Indonesian donations to the Clinton Foundation, eh?

Gun Law In The Courts

Massachusetts has a fairly draconian gun law that bans pretty much all center fire semi-auto rifles. A Colorado think tank has weighed in with a judge who recently upheld the law saying:
In his April ruling, however, U.S. District Judge William Young in Boston said popularity doesn’t matter.
[T]he AR-15’s present-day popularity is not constitutionally material,” he wrote in his ruling. “This is because the words of our Constitution are not mutable. They mean the same today as they did 227 years ago when the Second Amendment was adopted.”
 One of the recent SCOTUS decisions held that the 2A covered the keeping and bearing of any weapon "in common use" and was not limited to flintlocks. The AR pattern rifle being currently the most popular rifle in the country at the moment, it would seem to be covered.

OTOH, if as the judge says, "the words of our constitution are not mutable" then let's go back to the original document where it says "shall not be infringed." It seems like a good starting point.

Tariffs On Compact Trucks

The Europeans have announced that they're willing to negotiate on vehicle tariffs with Trump, proposing a zero-for-zero tariff rate an motor vehicles. This sounds great and makes perfect sense, but how did we get there?

The 25% tariff on light trucks was imposed in retaliation for a European tariff on U.S. frozen chickens. Euros don't buy pickups like we do but Ford builds the Ranger in Germany, hence no Rangers in the U.S. Because we can sell Hans or Pierre a frozen chicken for less than Fritz can, shipping included. The American consumers and the European auto makers lost, but the European chicken farmers won, which should tell you where the votes and money are although I have a hard time seeing this.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

The Best Gun?

It's the one you've got in your hand when you find you really need it. There are differences of course, and the study below goes into several of them. It also makes some questionable assumptions about the circumstances under which you anticipate using your gun, but just keep your own likely situation in mind as you watch this:

Found at hellinahandbasket.

Local Politics

Jarid Polis continues to try to buy the Colorado Governorship with tepid endorsements all around. Here's my contribution:
It appeals to his base, and pretty much sums up the candidate in one sticker.
Fiddly difference, same message. As usual, print out on landscape paper, tape into back window, remove post election.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Privatizing Tyranny

Of late the left has come up with new and improved ways of getting their agenda enacted, this time without having to bother with a troublesome legislature. The very latest is anti-gun Gov. Cuomo's effort to cripple the NRA by threatening any bank or insurance company that does business with them with delisting or at least crippling in the large New York market. Here he gets around any prohibitions against interfering with interstate commerce by simply threatening a long and expensive deluge of red tape. In the end I suspect he would lose, but getting from here to there would take six to 10 years and cost a fortune.

Shopify has announced that it will no longer support sales of anything gun related, and defines this using the boilerplate Bloomberg definitions pushed by the most restrictive states.

Twitter and Facebook are busily suppressing all the conservative messages they can find conveniently just before the elections so that any legal efforts to make them honor the first amendment probably won't get a hearing before the 2020 elections. Their argument is that as private businesses they can do as they please, which reminds me of the signs I used to see in businesses in the '50s stating "We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone." which was weasel-speak for "We don't serve blacks here."

My bullet and reloading stuff supplier, Rocky Mountain Reloading, was recently hit with a notice that their brass and lead component business was outside the realm of what their financial services supplier wanted to serve and that they had zero time to go somewhere else. This involved ginning up a new website as well.
You may be asking yourself why we would be switching to a new website when we just barely launched the one we had back in December. Well, we are free to finally make this announcement. We were one of the gun related companies that was targeted for destruction through elimination of our credit card processor. Luckily we had the foresight, knowing that it could become an issue, to put it in writing that they would not ever drop us because of our involvement in the firearm industry. Even so, we were issued a termination letter with threats to hold our deposits for up to six months. At the time we had over $40k in deposits for them to hold. We wouldn't have been able to pay our bills and we have been in a very bad position. Anyway, we contacted a lawyer and informed them that we were doing so and we were able to get them to allow us a window for finding a new credit card processor. That in-and-of-itself would be no big deal but the current website provider only had Paypal and our processor as payment options. Neither of which would allow bullet or casing sales.
Again all this because the financial wonks have caved to the leftists and can use the "we're a private business and can refuse service to anyone." argument. If you reload, check them out. Good product, good prices.

My own bank, Bank of the West has been overtaken by the PC movement as well. When I first started there it was a local operation and very friendly. They're still friendly enough but they've changed hands several times and the current parent company doesn't want to have anything to do with the tobacco, energy, or firearms businesses. The energy industry supplies a lot of jobs here in Colorado and I like it when people have jobs. They tend to vote Republican in order to help them keep more of their hard earned money. I'll be reluctantly be looking for a new bank then.

So we see, more and more, the infringements on our rights are coming less directly from the government, which wouldn't be allowed to do that anyway, and more from private industry which depends on licenses and approvals from governments to exist. Tyranny by proxy, neatly privatized and all legal. Expect a lot more of this if no one figures out how to stop it.

By way of stopping it, I'm told that if Twitter and Facebook were to be declared to be "common carriers" they would have to accept anyone and anything at all. Shades of the good old days. This would require legislation however, and requiring those two to allow free speech would open any politician supporting such an idea to charges of supporting Nazis and pedos from people who like having their opposition silenced.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Fun With Headlines - Mad Maxine

From Drudge
PELOSI: Maxine Waters 'Strikes Fear in the Heart' of Trump...
Mad Maxine strikes fear into the hearts of all rationally sane folks.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Health Issues 2b - Recovery

It seems that most of the digestive problems were caused by the pro-biotic I got. I quit taking it and 95% of the problems disappeared. What I would really like now is a Cuban sandwich and a beer but the system, while functional, probably wouldn't like that sort of stress. Next IDPA match is a week and a half out so I'm probably going to be good for that although I suspect I'll set some club records for speed. At the low end.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Health Issues 2 – Prostate Cancer

A column in todays WSJ is suggesting that discussing ones setbacks in life may well be good for you as you frequently enough find others in similar situations with whom you can discuss your problems and possibly discover solutions.

I have been diagnosed with Prostate cancer. This is not as bad as it sounds at the topmost level as it was caught at an early stage and treatment is simple and quick. That is for certain definitions of the word “simple”. Preparation includes inserting 4 short pieces of gold wire into the prostate so the targeting x-ray can actually see where the prostate is. The staff is provided with directions from the urologist as to where the cancer is located with reference to the wire locations. X-radiation therapy is applied using the very latest Allaudium Q-39 planetary nebulizer, an example of which in action can be seen here. All that was missing was the earth-shattering ka-boom.

The example shown has the machine working on the patients neck (Thyroid?) and emitting a red beam. In my case the patient was reversed and the machine was working on my crotch. In operation it's like having a 1-ton Labrador retriever carefully sniffing you so as to carefully commit to its memory all your pertinent statistics. No there is no red beam although there is a red laser cross hair roughly centered on the area of interest. The big head on the machine is the X-ray generator.

The many and varied angles it shoots from enables a session to hit the targeted spot from lots of different angles at one sitting and reduces the treatment time from 45 days to 5. I have now completed 5 treatments of 30 minutes each so by now all the bad stuff has presumably been shuffled off the mortal coil. That part was easy and painless although the side effects began to show up after treatment 3.

Most of my readers should be familiar with the 4 rules of gun safety, of which #4 is “Be sure of your target and what's beyond.” In this case, what's beyond is my intestines. Seems the cancer requires a fairly forceful push but my intestines don't take as much persuading. As a result I'm now on probiotics to try and restore my digestive functions. It also seems my lower intestine was weakened to the point that whereas in the past I'd get a polite warning about visiting the loo followed by a somewhat stronger one. Not any more. I get one warning and that's NOT advisory. It says I'd better be within 10 yards of the facilities OR ELSE! Even worse, no one has been willing to hazard a guess as to exactly how long this should be expected to drag on. Best guess so far is about 2 weeks.

There is a list of dietary restrictions that goes with this process that basically boils down to “Anything you eat will come back to haunt you in about 4 hours so remember the 10 yard rule. Attempting to follow this has lost me about 10 lbs in the last week. So the cancer is gone in 5 easy treatments and now all I have to do is nothing until my guts recover from the collateral damage. Other restrictions include No Bicycles which I'm finding out has to do with introducing vibratory stimulus to the lower intestine area. When you apply vibration to something thick and slow moving, it becomes thin and fast moving. Riding a motorcycle is less stressful, but has the same end result. Walking around also introduces vibration and the dog is missing her morning walks.

The probiotics are a pricey set of pills to be taken for about 2 weeks. One of my friends suggested that knowing what the effect on ones gut flora is about to be, perhaps the treatment center should work in a step involving refining a stool sample from the patient before the procedure and saving the refined flora in the fridge until after completion at which time it could be replaced in one or two passes to give the patient back 100% of his original biota. I ran this by the folks at the treatment facility who had mixed reactions to the idea although they all agreed that this might be a good application for the fecal transplant technology.
Renew Life brand Digest Smart eliminates gas way better than Beano and Garden Life brand Raw Probiotics (refrigerated) for men 51 and older is recommended for us older farts.

Mad Science department:

I also suggested a money saving method of doing this which was met with somewhat less enthusiasm. One visits the Salvation Army store and picks up a blender and a coffee maker. Rub them through your dish washer until your sterilization standards are met. Place stool sample and about 3 cups of distilled water in the blender, and reduce the mixture to brown liquid. Set up the coffee maker with the filter holder over the carafe, and pour the liquid through a coffee filter. This should yield a couple of cups of what the old Chinese physicians referred to as "yellow soup". Repeat the filtering process until all solid material has been removed. Use an eyedropper to load up some gelatin capsules with the soup and put them into secondary capsules, and refrigerate. Post treatment, take 2 in the evening before bed time for about 2 weeks. That should do it. DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor. Do this at your own risk. Not responsible for anything. There are outfits that do this sort of thing and if you find one in your neighborhood, they might be able to help you out. It certainly adds a level of professionalism to the process though.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Behind The Headlines - Empathy Is Overrated

From today's BOTW:

What Would We Do Without Experts? “She’s the world’s top empathy researcher. But colleagues say she bullied and
intimidated them.”
Makes perfect sense. You'll get more out of the sheep by being the sheep dog than you will by trying to become one of the sheep.

Behind The Headlines - OH 12 Finds More Ballots

I'm going to guess they were in a grocery bag in the trunk of an abandoned Cadillac with Illinois plates in a seedy part of the district.

Rest of story here.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Health Issues

A whole host of testing, prep, treatment, and probably some post treatment testing. As a side effect, my gut flora has been trashed. Treatment ends Thursday. Recovery of the flora will likely take a bit longer, meantime I'm just not feeling very frisky.

Details later.

Friday, August 3, 2018

Near Record NICS Checks

But does it actually mean anything other than a chance to write a flashy headline?
Here's the month-to month with a projection for the year:
Except for summer of 2016 and December of 2015, the curves follow a fairly predictable path. Here's a chart of July numbers:
With the MSM predicting the inevitability of a Blue Wave, perhaps now would be a good time to buy up some gun stocks. If it doesn't pan out, you can always sell them before they return to normal.