Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Syria

I see that our President held a press conference today about the Syrian question.  It seems that there is some evidence that Syrian president Assad used sarin gas on civilians in the ongoing civil war that country is experiencing.  As usual, our President is conflicted.

For you non-swimmers, a quick run-down.  You might remember that George W. Bush used the evidence that Saddam Hussein used gas against Kurdish civilians as evidence that Hussein had WMDs and as justification for our entry into Iraq.  The non-swimmers will also remember that they gave Bush hell when we didn't find any WMDs, even after all the available evidence pointed to the fact that they'd been shipped to Syria.  Now, we've got WMDs in Syria and President Obama is conflicted about that, wanting to explore a whole range of options. 
Iran’s begun openly mocking him for his hesitation, issuing its own “red line” today forbidding use of WMDs by either Assad or “the opposition.” Does Obama now agree that the rebels themselves might be responsible for one of the incidents involving chemical weapons? (Assad’s regime accuses them of it regularly, for what little that’s worth.) No one pressed him on that today. If he does come to that conclusion, does that also cross America’s “red line” or is it only the regime’s use that would trigger action? If the point of the red line is to enforce a taboo against WMD, any usage should warrant intervention, not just if it’s done by Assad. But in that case, the rebels would actually have an incentive to go chemical: If you want Assad’s stockpile off the table, start gassing people and wait for U.S. or Jordanian or Turkish troops to swoop in and grab Assad’s arsenal.
It's a crap-shoot, for damned sure, but it's the same crap-shoot that Bush had.  The big difference is that Assad is holding the dice, and Obama is standing at the end of the table, wondering if they're going to come up snake-eyes.

I don't believe that there is anything worth saving in Syria.  Like Egypt and Libya, the whole place will be run by the Taliban, or Al-Queda, or the Muslim Brotherhood.  There are no good options and there are not any secular armies in the region.  As long as they don't screw with Israel, I say let them murder each other.  We've got no business poking our noses into their civil wars.

Oh, and is anyone but me amused at how much Obama is beginning to act like Bush, especially in foreign affairs?  He's talking about a range of options in the Middle East, we're still in Afghanistan, and Gitmo is still open.  If Obama would embrace the oil business, it would be a push.

Monday, April 29, 2013

The Roses

I am reminded that this weekend is the Run for the Roses, the Kentucky Derby, the biggest show in horse racing.  If you've never been in Kentucky for a Derby, you've missed some of life's greatest excitement.  Big parties, parades, dances, all leading up to the greatest two minutes of horse racing.

You can see the Leaderboard here.  I've never heard of any of these horses, but I'm sure that I'll be paying attention on Saturday afternoon.  We haven't had a Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978, but I watched him, and Seattle Slew in '77 when I was stationed at Fort Knox.


Sunday, April 28, 2013

Sunday Song

An old one, from Shenandoah in 1989.



Y'all get out and enjoy this Sunday.  Make time to pray, and take time to play.

My Brood

Last night at the pool party, my daughter wanted a photo of her brothers and I.

That's my offspring.  PawPaw is the midget in the back.  The big galoot on the left is a wizard with sheet metal and industrial plumbing.  The tall kid is an ace mechanic and you don't want him shooting at you unless you're over 800 yards away.  Even then you're in danger, but not necessarily fatal.  The little girl is a pharmacy tech and she makes the best enchiladas known to modern man.  The guy on the right is a cop, and you don't want him shooting at you with a handgun.  Or his precision rifle.

That's my youg'uns.

Sunday Morning Dawg

The last weekend of April, and it's a wonderful time.  Partly cloudy, cool in the morning, warm in the afternoon, and it's a perfect time to hang out on the deck.

Go enjoy this Sunday.  It's beautiful weather out there.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Grilling

Our immediate family started a tradition a year or so ago.  Every two weeks, we meet at one or another's house on a rotating basis.  We cook, eat, tell lies, laugh and generally bond as a family.  Another tradition is that on the last Saturday of April, we open the swimming pool.  Whether it is too cool to swim or not is not PawPaw's concern.  The pool is open and the actual time spent in the pool is on the parents.

Due to a happy confluence of these two events, I'll be hosting the bi-weekly gathering at my house today.  There are two birthdays being celebrated, both of them grandsons.  Milady always lets the birthday critter choose the menu.  One wanted spaghetti and meatballs, the other wanted hamburgers, so we're cooking both this evening.

PawPaw went out to look at the charcoal grill and found that winter has eaten a hole in the bottom of it.  That grill has been in the backyard for eight years and I know how to cook on it, so I went down to the box store and found another just like it.

That's the Char-Griller Outlaw model, and I like the way that grill cooks.  I don't know yet if I'll put a drop-box on it, but they're easily available.  As much as I like a drop-box, I really don't use one that often.  I've got some ideas to build a smoke-box that don't require the drop-box.  We'll see how those ideas play out.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Tamerlan's Brother

So, I'm sitting here thinking about whether Boston should give Tamerlan a Mahomet burial, or just run him through the Muffin Monster, then I start thinking about Tamerlan's brother.  You know, Dschuz or whatever they call him.  Yeah, the one that bled all over that guy's boat before the police ruined the boat?  Yeah, that guy.  You know that the reason that Tamerlan is dead is because Dschuz ran over him?  Yeah, inconvenient but true.  Younger brother kills older brother by running him over.  Sucks to be Tamerlan.

Still, the younger brother dumped the stolen ride, and hid on this poor fellows boat, and the police are searching everywhere, going house-to-house, violating civil rights by the bushel-basket.  Until the good citizen finds him in the boat, calls the police, and the cops come over and shoot holes in the boat.  Yeah, the police covered themselves with glory that day.  As did the citizens of Boston, who cowered in place while a teenager terrorized their town.  That's another story.

What I'm wondering; doesn't anyone in Massachusetts have a bloodhound?  When Dschuz (or whatever his name is) left the stolen vehicle, bleeding, and started running, a decent bloodhound would have sorted that trail out in about 15 minutes.  Unless you can't use dogs on Mohammedans for some damned reason.

The Boston PD needs to invest in a couple of good bloodhounds. 

Who Cares?

The headline at The Daily Beast:
Will Tamerlan Tsarnaev Get a Muslim Burial?
And my first reaction, Who Cares? I certainly don't, but I thought that Mahomets had to be buried before the sun goes down?  We gave that murderous asshole bin Laden a Mohammedan burial, at sea, but evidently, one mosque has declined to bury the cop-killing, child-killing Tamerlan.
So, it was surprising when NBC reported that one of Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s aunts said the Boston Marathon bombing suspect had been denied a traditional burial by a local mosque. One of Tamerlan’s uncles requested the rite for his nephew, only to be refused, she said.
Personally, I think they should trot his body down to the local wastewater treatment plant and stuff it in a drum so that all of Boston that's so inclined can come out and piss on him.  Then, after Boston tires of that, run him through the Muffin Monster and be done with him.  The less said the better. His mortal remains just go away, to be forgotten, except as an example of evil.

Truly?  Who cares?  Tell the family to come get him, and if they don't, bury him in Potter's Field in an unmarked grave.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Shower Fixed

I went to one plumbing supply store and they couldn't help me.  They don't distribute for Price-Pfister, but they sent me down the road to a guy who does.  "Okay", thinks I, "now I know it's a Price Pfister"

I walked to the counter, showed the guy my pictures.  "Oh, yeah," he says, "I recognize that mixer.  Hang on."  He walks to the back of the store, snatches one out of the bin, and brings it back.  "Easy-peasy" he says, "any fool could replace that cartridge."

So, we talked for a few minutes about the particular fool who was standing in front of him, and the pitfalls I might expect, which were few.  "Is there anything else I should know about this cartridge before I snatch that other one out of the wall?"

"Turn the water off, " he says, "that's the biggest mistake people make, trying to replace the cartridge before they turn the water off.  Makes a helluva mess"

"Good advise," says I.  I turned and paid the lady at the register, then came home.  Turned the water off at the meter.  Fifteen minutes later I was done.  No cussin'.  I've got the temps regulated.  (Who knew you could regulate the amount of hot water that comes out of a shower, except the old-fashioned way?)  I'll have to tell Milady to be careful, don't scald herself the first time she gives it a go.

For the record (and it's amazing how much I use this blog to remember stuff), it's a Price-Pfister mixer valve, #P974-042.  It cost me about $26.00 and I was glad to pay it.

Glowball Warmening

Fifty degrees out there this morning, I needed a jacket on my first-cup-of-coffee stroll.  Came in and turned the heat on in the house so that Milady wouldn't take a chill when she awoke.

This is the last week of April, and I guess we're having a pre-Easter cold snap.  Except that Easter was several weeks ago.  I'm not complaining, you understand, just a mite confused.  Normally in Louisiana this time of year, we're well past the morning jacket phase of spring.  I've actually put the jacket away three times already this year, thinking that cool weather was over.  When we get to the 80-by-8:00, full summer will be upon us, and I'll be pining for cool weather.

The official opening of the pool is this weekend.  Grandson Quinton's birthday marks the official opening, where the kids have the option of putting on a bathing suit and getting in the water.  It's liable to be a bit chilly for that, although PawPaw won't be the one to keep them from getting in the pool.

When I walked outside in the pre-dawn chill, the first thought that came to my mind was that it is squirrel hunting weather, and that's not for another five months.  Yeah, I'm already thinking about hunting season.  Lots of work to do before November.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

When It Rains

When it rains, it pours.  After the pool debacles of earlier this year, and me ripping the water meter loose on Monday, I get up this morning to find that the shower valve in the master bath has gone the way of cheap plumbing fixtures.  I can't even identify the damned thing, so I don't know what I'm looking for.  I took good pictures and I'll head to Lowe's a bit later this afternoon to try and educate myself.

Thankfully, the shower in the guest bath still works.  When I discover which valve I need for the master bath, I'll keep the packaging so that when the cartridge on the guest bathroom dies, I'll know what to look for.  I'm sure that the contractor who built this house thirteen years ago put in the same shower valves.  The one in the master is marked "Lowes" and that's where I'll start my search.

Just Dammit.

**Update**  Well, that was a wasted trip.  I went to Lowe's and tried to get some help.  Showed the guy in the plumbing department the photos of the shower valve, and he asked "What am I looking at, a sparkplug?"

Okay, sparky, it's easy to see that you've never done any plumbing.  I guess I'll go to a real plumbing-supply house tomorrow after work.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

At the School-House

This afternoon, just before the buses ran, one of the kids kicked a soccer ball and knocked a hose-bib off a fitting on the practice field.  After my experience with the water meter yesterday, I didn't even go out to look at the geyser.  The assistant principal asked me what I thought about it.

"Y'all have fun with that."

The plumbers got there just before I left.  It must be hell being a plumber this time of year.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Mowing the Grass

Mowing the grass went well today, in my terribly overgrown front yard.  This was the first cutting of the season.

Until I forgot where the water meter was located and yanked it out of the ground with the blades of the riding lawn mower.  It's a good thing I had already mowed the ditches, because they filled with water pretty quickly.

The guy from the Buckeye Water District said that lawnmowers are his worst enemy.  My son, who works for the Pollock Water System was there to help also.  Thanks, son.

It's hell being a redneck, sometimes.

Miranda

An interesting synopsis of the Miranda ruling, from Orin Kerr. 
1) A lot of people assume that the police are required to read a suspect his Miranda rights upon arrest. That is, they assume that one of a person’s rights is the right to be read their rights. It often happens that way on Law & Order, but that’s not what the law actually requires. The police aren’t required to follow Miranda. Miranda is a set of rules the government can chose to follow if they want to admit a person’s statements in a criminal case in court, not a set of rules they have to follow in every case.
I know that when a suspect on TV is arrested, the first thing we hear the detective intone is:  "You have the right to remain silent".  I've done that on occasion, especially when  citizens are present.  I really don't need to read a suspect his rights unless I intend to ask him questions, ergo, I'm not going to violate his right to remain silent if I already have sufficient cause to arrest him for an offense.  In many cases I might not ask a suspect any questions.  Granted, it's easier to get a statement into evidence if you have a Miranda warning on file, but if I'm not interested in his statement, there's no real reason to get a Miranda waiver.

Don't believe everything you see on television.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Coin Toss

From Rodger


Heh!  Indeed.

New Computer

My laptop crashed a couple of months ago, and because I don't need any real high-strength computer, I've been using Milady's netbook to access the interwebs and do some blogging.  Just last week, Milady's brother told us that his company was buying new laptops, and he had a chance to buy a few of them.  The company would pay a tech guy to wipe the computer and the company would sell them to employees at a very nice cost. 

I told him "Yeah!", so I picked it up yesterday at the fish fry.  It's a Dell Inspiron, and when they said they wiped it, they weren't kidding.  Except for the hour at church today I've spent all day cussing and configuring.  I've finally got the wireless working and now I'm finding other bugs.  I've downloaded a few programs I like and I  thought that I'd see if I can post on this thing.  I guess we'll know in a few minutes.

It runs Windows XP, has an 80 gig hard drive, and runs an Intel Centrino duo processor.  Whatever that means.  Now that I'm studying the machine, I don't see an SD card reader on it anywhere.

Sunday Morning Dawg

This dog loves sniffing tires, as do most dogs.  Something about the rubber compound in the tire, the various smells that cling to the tire (I shudder to think where that tire has been), all conspire to make a scent-buffet that the dog finds irresistible.


It's all part and parcel of being a dawg, I guess.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Gun Oils

In response to my earlier post on ATF, Rivrdog says in comments:
I had a Department Armorer warn me about using anything but straight gun oil on guns kept loaded (service firearms), and he put it like this:
I understand the concern about penetrating oils and primers.  Really, I do.  However, over the last several years I've become convinced that the oils we gunnies like to call "straight gun oils" simply don't exist.  It simply doesn't make sense to formulate oils for the tiny, miniscule market that is the gun oil market.  From my very limited research, what we buy are common industrial lubricants, repackaged into small one-ounce bottles and sold to us at a premium.  A quick look at the label on my gun oil and a walk through an automotive supply store convinced me that "straight gun oil" is simply packaged for our convenience.  Even Break-Free CLP is easily purchased in one-gallon jugs, and I've seen it in the past in five-gallon cans.

I don't believe that the guys at Exxon-Mobil, or BP, or Phillips, even know that we exist.  If one of their research guys came to them and said "Hey, we need to refine some gun oil!", they'd look at him like he was crazy, unless he could convince them that they could sell it by the tanker load.  No, what we buy as "gun oil" is simply repackaged bulk lubricant, with extra hype and cool labeling.

Do I use "straight gun oil"?  Yeah, I've got a few tiny bottles on the shelf because they're convenient.  I also use 3-in-1 oil because it's convenient.  I also use white lithium grease.  The 2-ox tube I bought five years ago is just about gone and the next time I'm in Auto-Zone, it's time to pick up another tube.

I get it about primers and penetrating oil, but I don't believe that "straight gun oil" exists.  It's a figment of the marketers imagination.  And a highly profitable figment for those willing to package it.  They can repackage industrial lubricant in one ounce bottles and sell it to us for over $100.00 per gallon.  It's a heck of a deal for them.


Friday, April 19, 2013

Penetrating Oil

If you've ever had to get a rusty nut off of a rusty machine screw, you know how aggravating it can be to get it to break loose.  So, imagine my surprise when I found this post over at Curmudgeonly and Skeptical

.
Imagine that.  A 50/50 mix of ATF and Acetone mix works better than WD40.

I've been using ATF as a gun oil for a while, but I never thought about using it to loosen rusted bolts.  Is there anything ATF won't do?

Boston Manhunt

They're still looking for the remaining sonofabitch who bombed the Boston Marathon.  Seven IED's recovered and the manhunt has practically shut down Boston.  Some estimate that the shutdown will cost between $250-300 million per day.  Allahpundit has continuing coverage of the events at HotAir.

The capture of this guy is hugely iimportant.  I get that.  What I don't get is shutting down an entire city to get him.  This is exactly what the terrorists want, to shut down American cities.  By stopping bus lines, shutting down commuter lines,and telling people to stay home, indoors, is just exactly what the terrorists want.  Boston has played into the terrorists hands.  Eugene Kontorovich talks about the civil liberty aspects at Volokh.com.  For those of you unfamiliar with the site, it's a group blog of  a group of very high-level attorneys.  I admit that Volokh and company lose me in their esoteric analysis sometimes, but I find the blog very interesting, and I find Mr. Kontorovich's analysis compelling. (Basically, because he agrees with me.)

Still, I've been a cop for a long time.  I shut down a military installation, once, over a threat, but I've never shut down a whole city.  When we shut down Fort Polk, during Desert Storm, the hue and cry was phenomenal.  I can't imagine the hue and cry over shutting down Boston.  Am I concerned about the civil rights of the sonofabitch with a bomb?  Only as much as is necessary to prosecute or kill him.  I'll do what's proper and no more.  I am concerned about the civil rights of large American cities, and the example we're setting when some other sonofabitch decides to bomb something.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Toomey-Manchin dies. Obama butt-hurt.

While working unGodly hours yesterday and Tuesday, I notice that Toomey-Manchin went down in ignominious defeat.  All amendments failed to get to the floor for debate.  I started digging through other links and saw that my Dem senator, "Katrina" Mary Landrieu voted YEA on the matter.  Landrieu hails from the New Orleans area, a solid Democrat stronghold in what is otherwise a solid red state, but she is my Senator, so I took a minute to dash off a quick email to her.  The text is below.
Dear Mary
I see that you recently voted YEA on Toomey Manchin.  Have you lost your damned mind?  You're standing for re-election later this year and already have a strong challenger.
She'll never see the email, and some staffer will delete it as soon as possible.  However, the Senate declined to even debate the issue, and the President's signature effort on gun control went down in resounding defeat. Senator Dianne Feinstein's assault weapon amendment lost 40-60.

Senator Murphy of Connecticut thinks we're all a bunch of poo-poo heads for not marching lockstep against the Constitution, and the President is looking all butt-hurt that we don't immediately do everything he says we should do.  Well, screw him.  I don't have time to worry about his butt-hurt.  Now, I understand, he'll go back to doing what he does best.  I'm not sure if that's Executive Orders, playing golf, or taking wildly expensive vacations on my dime.

This is a great day, and I think I'm going to have a drink to celebrate.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Picking up Speed

You'd think as the school year wound-down, things would start to slow down.  Oh, no.  We're picking up speed in a race to the finish line, both literally and figuratively.  Yesterday I accompanied the softball team to Houma for the first round of the playoffs.  They lost.  This afternoon, the baseball team has their last home game, so it's Senior Night.  The game was supposed to be tomorrow, but we're running against predicted thunderstorms tomorrow, so they decided to play it today.  PawPaw pulled on his boots yesterday morning at 0600, pulled them off at 2230.  It was a long day and today promises to be another long day.  Not as long as yesterday, but certainly over 12 hours.

We're picking up speed heading to the end of the school year.  There's still theater, athletic banquets and all the other impedimentia to the end of the school year.  This time of year it's tough being the school-house cop.  Not for the demands of the police work, just the sheer number of hours that the school is open.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Bombs in Boston

At least two, maybe three explosions in Boston this afternoon, near the finish line of the Boston Marathon.  CBS, NBC, Fox, they're all reporting it, take your choice.  Ed Driscoll, at PJMedia, notes that Wolf Blitzer has already blamed it on the right wing, with no evidence.
CNN's Wolf Blitzer just speculated if anti-tax groups were behind the bombing WITH ZERO EVIDENCE
Seriously, Wolf?  Is that the best you can do?  Who uses bombs this day and age?  Think about it, and you might come up with a different group.  However, we have no evidence yet, so we'll have to wait and see.

My prayers to everyone affected.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Sunday Morning Dawg

Lately, the dog has been taking rides with me in the car when I run errands. Cool temps, short stops, I'm not concerned that he'll be harmed while he waits in the car for a few minutes as I run inside to complete my errands.

 

He finds the seats in the Mercury quite comfortable as we drive down the road.

I think he likes taking rides with PawPaw.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Confiscations in New York

Remember that new law that New York recently passed, the SAFE Act?  They're already confiscating guns.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Thursday, a state Supreme Court Judge ruled guns seized from David Lewis, 35, must be returned to him after he was incorrectly identified as violating the mental health provision of the SAFE Act. “We know that from the health care agency to the State Police, there was some kind of breach,” said Lewis’ attorney, Jim Tresmond.
Notice the verbiage.  Seized guns.  Past tense.  Which means when the judge ruled, the police had already shown up, seized the guns, and the Court had time to rule that they must be returned.

So, how do they know who has guns without a registry?  Simple, New York has a registry.  This is how it begins, folks.  First, the background checks, then the registry, then they come for your guns.  The next time a politician tells you this won't happen, tell them that it has already happened.  Past tense.

Watch your 401(K)

Remember all that advise to save for retirement, to put your savings in a 401(K) account?  Tax-free savings that would only be taxed when you retired?  Or to pay taxes now, convert to a Roth, and have tax-free income in your later years?

Well, our President intends to try and tax that money.  Why?  Simple.
The White House explanation is that some people have accumulated "substantially more than is needed to fund reasonable levels of retirement saving." So Mr. Obama proposes to "limit an individual's total balance across tax-preferred accounts to an amount sufficient to finance an annuity of not more than $205,000 per year in retirement, or about $3 million for someone retiring in 2013."
So, where does the Government get off telling us that we have "substantially more than is needed to fund reasonable levels of retirement savings"?  What I have is none of the Government's business.  When I follow the rules, stay out of trouble, and try to live my life, the Government has no damned business telling me what I can acquire, what I can save, or what I need to spend.

In my opinion, they have no business telling me what rifles I can have, nor even what magazines I can have.  The Government had best remember that the three boxes to social change are the soap box, the ballot box and the cartridge box.  I have all three.

Someone is Killing Dawgs in Idaho

I see that someone is killing dogs in Idaho.  Nasty business, but I understand.  Feral dogs are a huge problem for stock owners, and while I don't agree with needlessly killing dogs, I can understand protecting property, and I can't understand unfeeling folks who "drop-off" dogs in the country because they're tired of dealing with them in town.

We're discussing this problem at The Gun Counter, and it reminded me of a story from the early '80s when I broke one fellow from dropping off dogs in our country neighborhood.

Back about '83 or '84 it became Father's Day and my kids presented me with a set of binoculars. Nothing expensive, but yet binocs. We lived way out in the country, so far down a bad road that all the neighbors knew each other's vehicles and we had a pretty good "nosy-neighbor neighborhood watch". We also had a problem with city folks dumping unwanted dogs in our area. We mostly adopted the good ones and buried the others. However, it was a problem.

 Anyway, that beautiful Sunday afternoon, I'm sitting on the front porch, playing with my new binocs and I notice a strange car driving slowly down the road. He passes the house and goes down the road about 100 yards, then stops and a dog falls out of the passenger side. I get his plate with my brand-new binocs. Then I walk inside and call the Sheriff's Office, where my buddy is working the desk. He runs the plate for me. Cool. Now I've got a vehicle description and an address. I go outside, catch the dog and put him in the kennel. Water him, a little feed. Poor mutt's confused as hell. But PawPaw has a plan.

 The next morning I get up and load that confused mutt, then head to the local dog pound, run by a curmudgeonly woman named Bobbi. "Bobbi", says I, "I need to borrow some dogs."

 "Borrow?" she asks, so I explain my plan. Before long we're loading about a half-dozen dogs in my pickup, all strung on one piece of clothesline. I drive to the address, and sure enough, there's the car I saw yesterday, parked in the garage. NIce house, nice car, nice neighborhood. At that time, lots better than I can afford. So, I unload the dogs, take them to the front door, and tie that clothesline to the doorknob. And ring the bell. 

A man comes to the door. Khaki pants and white button down. He opens the door and the clothesline dogs surge in to the house. "What the hell is going on?" He's tangled up in the dogs, confused, and one big cur has squatted and is taking a dump in his foyer.

"Mister" says I, "where I live we've got a huge problem with people dumping dogs they don't want. I don't know if all these dogs are yours, but I know for damned sure that your car (I point at the car) dumped that dog (I point at the first dog) on my road yesterday. I figure that all these dogs are yours. You have a nice day."

 I checked with Bobbi later and asked her if her dogs had come back to the pound. "Yes indeed, she says, and I charged that asshole a $10.00 adoption fee for each and every one."

Friday, April 12, 2013

Flashbang Bra Holster

Okay, this is just cooler than hell, and what's not to love?  Boobs and holsters.  And guns.  They're a guy's best friends.

Seriously, this is a cool idea.  The Flashbang holster.  It rides under the ladies bra and is very concealable and very fast.  The video shows the lady unholstering and getting off a shot in 1.3 seconds.  Very cool.  And, you can wear it with anything as long as you're wearing a bra and a shirt.  Fits .380 pistols.



This is a public service announcement for the ladies.


Thursday, April 11, 2013

PIO

In every police department, we have an officer who's known as the PIO, or Public Information Officer.  It's his or her job to give the public the information that they need or want about the department.

Well, as it turns out, my department has a Facebook page.  In it, you'll see all kinds of things about the activities of the department, and all the stuff that the PIO puts out is on the Facebook page.  There's not many photos, but there is a lot of information about ongoing vandalism, requests for community assistance, a tip line, and success stories.  It's pretty good reading if you like local law enforcement news.

PawPaw doesn't have a lot to blog about today, so if you're bored, go over to the Rapides Parish Sheriff's Office facebook page and look around.  Some of it is pretty interesting, and my kudos to the PIO and his tech guys for putting it together.

PETA Drones

Next, this bit of silliness.  It seems that PETA plans to use drones to track hunters.  According to US News:
The group says it will "soon have some impressive new weapons at its disposal to combat those who gun down deer and doves" and that it is "shopping for one or more drone aircraft with which to monitor those who are out in the woods with death on their minds."
You do understand that we're armed?  With guns that shoot down things?  Let PETA fly one of their silly little drones over my deer blind and they're liable to wonder where their drone went.  I, of course, will know nothing about it, and if they come on the land to look for it, they'll be charged with trespassing.

Pre-Dawn Fisking

Drinking coffee before dawn I stumbled onto a left-wing screed from a fellow named Will Marshall.  It is amazing to me that he could pack so many falsehoods into a single Beast article.  If you roll down to the credits, you'll learn that Mr. Marshall runs The Progressive Policy Institute, a centrist political think tank.  If you believe he's centrist, then I've got a bridge in Brooklyn I'd like to sell you.  But, labels aside, lets go to the meat of his argument.
The gun lobby is shooting sensible gun legislation full of holes. Already, the Senate has dropped a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, 
Well, for starters Will, the legislation isn't sensible.  It does nothing to prevent crime and would have done nothing to prevent the tragedy at Newtown.  If legislation is not sensible, then I expect the Senate to drop it.
 Maintaining public order is supposed to be government’s job. The sociologist Max Weber considered a “monopoly on the legitimate use of physical force to keep order” to be the defining characteristic of a competent state. 
In this case, Will, Max Weber is simply mistaken.  He's wrong.  More to the point, a monopoly on the use of physical force is the defining characteristic of tyranny.  Going beyond sociological theory, we find that even the antelope on the plains have a natural right to use their horns and hooves as weapons against predators.  Every living being has a natural right to self-defense.
 In the gun lobby’s dystopic view, Americans can no longer rely on government to keep them safe, so they have to do the job themselves.
No, Will, in the gun lobby's clear-eyed view, we understand that when seconds count, the police are minutes away and that our defense is our responsibility.  The police can't camp on our doorstep every minute, nor do we wish them to.  It's going to take them a few minutes to get here and if those few minutes are the difference between life and death, I'll chose life, thank you.

I could go on, deconstructing him sentence by sentence.  It's like shooting fish in a barrel.  Not sporting at all.  His argument rings hollow, as does his politics.

I can't help it.  Just one more.
 Yet progressives shouldn’t despair, because there is a saving grace—American federalism. New York, Maryland, and Connecticut have passed reforms
Yes, indeed, Will, thank God for federalism.  While New York, Maryland, Connecticut and Colorado were busy passing laws that won't help a bit, and certainly wouldn't have prevented the tragedy in Newtown, other states are moving to preserve gun rights, strengthen the rights of law-abiding Americans.  Michigan, Ohio,  Arkansas, Maine, Mississippi, Wyoming, South Dakota, Louisiana have all passed laws or Constitutional amendments strenthening gun rights.  More than a dozen states including Texas, North Carolina, Missouri and Georgia have such laws in the works.  Yes, indeed, Will, thank God for American federalism.

Let Freedom Ring!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Senators Should Not Listen to Constituents

That's the premise of an article over at the New Republic, that US Senators should ignore the wishes of constituents that contact them about important issues.
For all the talk of AR-15s and high-capacity magazines since the Newtown shootings, you’d think from watching the gun-control debate in Washington that the scariest weapons in the land are the humble telephone and e-mail. Every day seems to bring another report of a senator or congressman who was inclined to support serious gun-control legislation but then had second thoughts after nothing more than a deluge of ding-a-lings and inbox pings. It’s almost as if these poor fellows had never been the target of a concerted special-interest push before.
Alec MacGillis (whoever the hell he is) is upset that Senators are listening and that their "serious gun control legislation" wouldn't have done a damn thing to prevent the tragedy at Newtown.  He uses words like "sensible gun control", but what he's proposing doesn't make sense because it does nothing to address the tragedies that have occurred.

Those who want "serious gun control" have no useful ideas to offer.  Those of us who are serious about gun control (read the Four Rules) know that these proposals will do nothing to improve gun safety.  Thankfully, our Senators are listening to us.  Sometimes, it's best to do nothing, to let human nature take its course, to debate, and consider and decide that there's nothing useful that can be done.

In the case of our legislators, sometimes it's useful for them to know that nothing they do will make a difference, and decide to do nothing. That's prudent, honorable, and perfectly acceptable.  The Senate can't solve every problem we have, and they shouldn't pretend to try.  They're limited in what they can do, and they have better things to do, like passing a budget (which they haven't done in several years).

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

Take a Ride?

I can ask the dog if he's ready to take a ride, and he starts bouncing.  This evening, I was going to get Milady and I some fish plates and I asked the dog if he'd like to take a ride.  He almost broke down the door trying to get to the car.


He rides pretty good, and he seems to enjoy it.  Especially when I get out of the car and go into a place.  When I come out, there's normally a kid looking in the window.  "Look at the little dog!"

Police One Survey

There's an interesting survey that's just come out at PoliceOne.com.  PoliceOne is a leading police oriented website with an interesting feature.  All of it's members are active or retired law enforcement.  When you sign up, they ask for some specific information and they actually call your agency to make sure that you're in law enforcement.

They did a survey in March of active and retired police officers and asked about gun-control laws.  The members were overwhelmingly against those laws and were very pro Second Amendment.  The results were quite startling, in direct opposition to what we're hearing from politicians and administration.
1.) Virtually all respondents (95 percent) say that a federal ban on manufacture and sale of ammunition magazines that hold more than 10 rounds would not reduce violent crime.
It's interesting to note that the respondents are virtually all street-level cops.  Some administrators, of course, but the huge majority of members are cops who are actively engaged in the boots-on-the-ground fight against crime.  Here's another of the survey results.
3.) About 85 percent of officers say the passage of the White House’s currently proposed legislation would have a zero or negative effect on their safety, with just over 10 percent saying it would have a moderate or significantly positive effect.
We've heard a lot from the administration about guns and laws, but this is the first time that someone has taken the pulse of street level police officers and the survey is an interesting barometer of the way that cops think about guns.

Let Freedom Ring!

Sunday, April 07, 2013

Republicans

Surfing Facebook today I came upon a rather strange posting concerning Republicans, and I decided to research it.  Turns out, it's true.

It was through the hard work of a number of dedicated African American men and women that the earliest foundations of the Republican Party of Texas were laid. The first ever state Republican convention that met in Houston on July 4, 1867 was predominantly African American in composition, with about 150 African American Texans attending, and 20 Anglos.
The second State GOP Chairman, Norris Wright Cuney, an African-American from Galveston who led the Republican Party from 1883 to 1897, is said by State historians to have held “the most important political position given to a black man of the South in the nineteenth century.”

I bet y'all didn't know that.  Here's another interesting fact.  This time about Louisiana.  The first black governor of Louisiana was a ... wait for it... Republican.
Pinckney Benton Stewart Pinchback (born Pinckney Benton Stewart; May 10, 1837 – December 21, 1921) was the first person of African-American descent to become governor of a U.S. state. A Republican, he served as the 24th Governor of Louisiana for 35 days, from December 9, 1872, to January 13, 1873.[1]
Pinchback was also elected to Congress, but the good folks who controlled Congress in those days wouldn't seat a black man.  
Nicholas Lemann, in Redemption: The Last Battle of the Civil War, described Pinchback as "an outsized figure: newspaper publisher, gambler, orator, speculator, dandy, mountebank  – served for a few months as the state's Governor and claimed seats in both houses of Congress following disputed elections but could not persuade the members of either to seat him."[2]

I bet y'all didn't know that either.  As it turns out, the folks who call Republican racist, are just talking out of their hats.   Southern Republicans aren't racist.  We have a long history of working with all races to ensure limited government and civil rights.

Public Record

Let's talk about the public record, and the information age, and the information that we routinely allow other people to see.  It seems that some congressional staffers are upset because an outfit called LegiStorm is compiling feeds from various sources on those staffers and putting it all into one easy-to-use package.

We live in an information age, and the angst of the congressional staffers is understandable, but many folks don't realize how much information we readily make available to the public through the internet.  This blog, for example, is open to the public.  I've put it out there and if you surf through it you'll get a pretty good idea of my likes and dislikes.  I work for a governmental agency, so my salary is public record.  I am married, so that information is available as public record.  I bought a home and that transaction is public record.  I have a Facebook page and it's not shielded from public view.  I don't use a Twitter account, but many folks do, and if you don't make that information private, it's out there too.

The simple fact is that what we consider "public record" was once only available by going down to the Court House and digging through musty tomes.  Nowadays, much of that information is available online and when you start cross-referencing that information with the information that we willingly put on the internet, a dedicated researcher can come up with a fairly accurate profile.

I don't feel sorry for the Congressional staffers.  They put the information out there, and the folks at LegiStorm are simply compiling it from a combination of public sources.  However, their angst should be instructive to us as a society.  There is a huge amount of information readily available

There was this kid, back in 2002-03, who went to the high school where I work.  Back in those days the kids were using something called Zanga, which was a web-service that worked somewhat like Facebook does today. The kids would put up a page and other kids would comment on it.  I started surfing kids pages, and one day saw some un-complimentary information regarding me, myself.  So, I commented on the information.  The kid came to me later, truly upset that I was reading his personal page.  I explained to the young'un that his page was on the World Wide Web and that he had put the information out there.  Anyone with a computer and an internet connection could use that information for whatever purposes they desired.

It's a powerful lesson for all of us, especially for persons who work in the public sphere..  If you want to be a powerful person and use Twitter and Facebook and LinkedIn to show other folks how connected you are, don't be surprised if someone uses the information that you so readily trumpet to the world.  It's called the World Wide Web, and you put it out there.

Sunday Morning Dawg

The dog wasn't interested in participating this morning, putting his back to the camera.  Only when I told him that I was going to put a boot in his butt did he turn his head and look disdainfully in my general direction.

Sometimes he needs a swift kick to remind him who the Head Dawg is around here.

Saturday, April 06, 2013

At The Auction

I went to the auction after work last night, and when I got there they were bringing up a table of crystal.  I've got a small collection of decanters and saw two on the table that would compliment my display.  So, I bid on them and won them.


The one on the left is unmarked, simply a decorative piece. It's fairly light, but it reflects the light nicely.  The btttle on the right is much heavier, probably leaded crystal, and is marked BLOCK, so I assume that it was made by the Block company.  I can't find much on the Block decanter, but I'm convinced that it's worth what I paid for it.

A year or so ago, I found a decanter at the auction that I thought was wonderfully under-appraised, so I put my hat in the air and won it for well under $50.00.  When I got home I did the research, and found it to be a Waterford crystal decanter worth over $300.00.  I have dedicated that decanter to Milady's rum.  A very elegant container for a very special person.

Another Mayor Against Your Guns Arrested.

There's this group, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, who thinks that we should do all manner of things to disarm the American people.  The problem is that they're a power-drunk lot who often uses guns against their citizens.  Like this fool, who is accused of using a gun to commit a sex-offense.
The mayor of Marcus Hook was charged [March 21] with holding an acquaintance hostage during a drunken encounter at his home last month that allegedly ended with the mayor’s firing a gun into the floor.During the encounter, Mayor James D. Schiliro repeatedly offered to perform a sex act with the 20-year-old male, according to police. . 
Yeah, he wants your guns, but he's willing to use a gun to get sex.  He sounds like a sterling individual, doesn't he?  As it turns out, the Mayors Against Illegal Guns has quite a history of law-breaking, to the point where one wag has done the math and found that a Mayor Against Illegal Guns is 45 times more likely to commit a gun offense than your standard Florida license holder.

Any time a politician wants to restrict your rights, find out why.  It's generally not for the high-sounding reasons they'll give you.  It's generally much more basic than that; they intend to restrict your rights because it gives them greater power over your life.  Free people have rights, subjects don't.  Remember that when someone wants to restrict your rights in any manner.

Let Freedom Ring!

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Why Some BA Holders Can't Find a Job

Megan McCardle, over at the Daily Beast talks about education, and why some holders of BA degrees are working in a coffee shop.
Too many college kids are living in Mom's basement, or working at Starbucks.  Like most personal finance columnists, I get the letters from them: what do I do?  How do I fix this? For many, the answer is grad school.  But I get the letters from grad students too.
Megan goes on to tell us about charts and graphs, and government policy, but in many ways she misses the point of education, and employment.  Unless you're in a specific field, employers want to know what you can do.  What skills do you have?  How can you help my business be profitable?  And the simple fact is that if you've got a BA in English Lit, you may not have any salable skills.  Earlier today, Instapundit linked to an article that said some McDonalds restaurants were asking for a Bachelor's Degree for a cashier's job.  The article has been updated to reflect that no, you don't need a BA to work in McDonald's, but you get the point.  There are a lot of BA holders out there and only so many jobs to go around.

So, what's a kid supposed to do to get a job?  Simple, learn a skill.  If you start looking at want ads, you'll find that pharmacy techs are in high demand, as are Licensed Practical Nurses.  Welders don't have trouble finding work, nor do auto mechanics.   Learn the dirty work, the stuff that some folks don't want to do and you'll always have a job.  Wastewater treatment is a booming field.  It may not be as glamorous as some other jobs, but every house has a sewer line, and ever sewer line connects to a wastewater plant.  All that stuff has to go somewhere, and the pay will feed a family.

Mike Rowe made a successful TV series of the jobs no one wants to do.  Those jobs pay good money, and they'll keep you out of hock until you get something better.  The simple fact of the matter is that you might decide that working for a living, in an career field you never considered, is a fulfilling way to spend your life.

I've got a Bachelor's degree and I'm a cop.  I use my education every day, but not in the field of my study.  I used it in the military, and I use it in the police business.  Education is important, but don't let it lock you into a career plan that you can't sustain.  Go out, get a job, learn the trade.  Oh, and for you guys working at McDonald's, keep working.  Restaurant managers are normally paid very, very well.

Feel Good Video

You guys want to see a feel-good video.  This guy is piloting a small helicopter and retrieves a radio-controlled plane that's crashed in the top of a tree.



Hat tip to the guys at the Gun Counter.

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Rain-X

I was at the auto store yesterday, getting them to turn off that Check Engine light on the Mercury, (yes, I cleared the trouble), and I thought about Rain-X.  I had never used it, but my brother-in-law swears by it, so I picked up a bottle of their Original Glass Treatment.  When I got home, I followed the label directions and applied it to the Mercury, the F150, and the Explorer.  Great timing, because by daylight we were having a good, old-fashioned downpour.

That stuff is da' bomb!  The water flew off the windshield, it was a lot easier to see the road and the other cars in the pre-dawn darkness, and watching the little water droplets run up the windshield was just about as cool as it gets.  This stuff has been on the market for years, and if you haven't tried it, you owe it to yourself to give it a go.  Follow label directions of course.  Rain-X has the PawPaw seal of approval.

Atlanta Cheating Scandal

It was all the talk at the high school today, the Atlanta, GA, cheating scandal.
They had until noon today to surrender to police in the worst cheating scandal involving standardized education testing in American history. The thirty-five teachers and administrators represent only the first round of potential defendants in the appalling story, where “educators” spent more effort in burnishing test scores than in actually educating children — who got left behind in service to the ambition of the school system.
Thirty-five of them in the initial round of indictments, cheating on tests to boost school performance scores.  Being indicted is one thing, being convicted is another, but if any of them have actually been cheating on the school scores, I hope that the judge throws them in the hoosegow for a couple of years.  They can teach GED to inmates as part of their sentence.  Naw, that's not a good idea, at that point they would have already forfeited their credentials, so let them pick peas in the field with the rest of the lowlifes.

I bet that this 35 is just the tip of the iceberg.  When they start singing, who knows how many more will be netted?  None of them ever should be allowed on a school campus, ever again.  Not even to see their grand-daughter in the spring play.

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

The Crewcut

The crewcut, the haircut of serious men.  That's what this article tries to tell us.
There are various reasons that men get crewcuts, but there seems to be a common factor: a crewcut signals transition and commitment. It means humility, curiosity, perseverance, and purpose. A crewcut means that a man has gotten serious about something, be it God or subsuming his ego to become a member of a football team. I once saw Mark Hamill in an interview say that he felt that Luke Skywalker, his iconic character in should have come back in the third film with a crewcut–a signal that he was no longer a whiny adolescent but a scarred bad-ass who was ready to die for a cause. George Lucas, wrong as usual, nixed the idea.
 After I got out of the military, I let my hair grow for a while, to see how I'd like it, and I didn't like it a bit.  So, I went back to a crewcut ten years ago, and for me, it simply means that I'm no longer willing to worry about the style of my hair.  It's a whole lot easier to get in the barber's chair and tell him "Put a number two guard on the clippers and run all over my head.  Clip the hair out of my ears, and do something with my eyebrows."  Barbers understand instructions like that, and every man needs a barber shop.  Not a salon, or a  beauty shop, but a good old fashioned barber shop, where there are hunting magazines on the table and old farts like me waiting in line.

The simple fact fo the matter is that a crewcut is simple to wear.  I no longer own a comb, nor for that matter do I own shampoo.  My hair gets washed with the same soap that washes the rest of my body.  Without going into too many details, I start at the top and work to the bottom.  I like a Number 2, which uses the number 2 guard, and if you get into the barber's chair and tell the barber "Give me a Number 2."  If they don't know what that means, get up and leave immediately.  Any good barber will know a #2 and will be pleased to cut it, because it's very easy, and quick.

I don't know about my crewcut signaling perseverance, commitment, humility or any of that other bullshit, I simply know that it's easy and it's simple.  That's all a haircut should be.  Which reminds me, it's the first week of the month, it's about time to get to the barber shop.

Monday, April 01, 2013

Monday Musings

I called the dealership earlier today and they weren't quite finished with the F150, so I went out and loaded some .45 ACP while awaiting their call.  They called about 11:30 and said I could pick it up, so I had Milady take me to Marler to retrieve my pickup.  Surprisingly, Marler Ford came in under budget on the repairs and I was pleasantly surprised about that.  The service manager told me that the work was warranted for 12 months or 12,000 miles, and for a pickup truck with 188K miles on the odometer, that isn't bad.

The ride home was uneventful, the truck ran great, and now it's is back in the driveway.

I feel pretty good about that.  This has been one of the best trucks I've ever owned, and I've owned a bunch of trucks.  When I was in the cattle business, I was tough on trucks and it always seemed to m that the F150 gave consistently good service under rough conditions.

Now, if I can just figure out why that Check Engine light is lit on the Mercury, I'll be a happy camper.