Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Kim

Greatest bartender in the world, she worked at the Fiddler's Green, the junior officer bar at Knox.  Kim was a slight, Korean woman.  She always wore tasteful clothing, and her bartender skills were legendary.  She know what everyone in the room was drinking.  And, trust me, Cavalry and Armor officers are exuberant drinkers.  Three hundred fools in her bar, and she knew what ever one of them was drinking.

One night in 81 I came in after three days in the field, teaching Guard soldiers tank gunnery..  I was parched, I was tired, and Kim was ready to serve.  Normally, I drank bourbon, but i told her I was ready to switch horses.  I wanted something different.  And I was hungry.

Kim looked at me with her inscrutable Asian eyes.  "You wanna vodka tonic, and a Ruben sandwich".  It wasn't a question, it was a statement of fact.

I trusted Kim.  She had been taking care of junior officers for many years.  "Okay", I told her.  "Vodka tonic and a Ruben sandwich."

I came back to Knox in '86 for the career course.  When I walked  into the bar, Kim looked at me, her eyes narrowed, and she asked "You drinking bourbon, or you want vodka tonic?"  Five years I had not been in her bar, yet she knew  what to ask.

I hope she's retired now, living happily with grandkids all around her.  She was a great bartender.

Mallard Hen

A mallard hen, playing in a mud puddle in the yard.  She had a whole lake to roam in, but she's rather be in this little puddle between the shop and the house.

Go figure.  There's no telling what goes on in that mallard's mind.

Monday, June 18, 2018

Safety Third


I hope he gets that light installed.

About Parole Conditions

Speaking about the goblin in Trenton, Daave says:
And the room temperature bad guy had been paroled even though he had committed, and been convicted of, a separate felony while in prison.
Speaking as a 20-year parole officer, it's hard to know the thinking of a parole board.  They are often motivated by things that we on the street don't consider.  But, on every parole certificate I've ever seen, there is a prohibition on firearms.

In Louisiana, for example, the parole conditions say in part:
5. I shall not have in my possession or control any firearms or dangerous weapons.
Over the course of my career, I arrested a lot of goblins for firearms possession.  I'd arrest immediately on a violation of parole, then refer the offense to the District Attorney to see if he wanted to press new charges for Poss Firearm by Convicted Felon.

The parolee would always be sent back on my violation, but I never once had a DA file new charges based on my report.  It seemed like it would be a pretty easy slam-dunk, but no DA ever took the bait.  Go figure.

Space Force?

Numerous sources are reporting that President Trump has directed the Pentagon to begin organizing a Space Force.  Yeah, really.

If the Army does land warfare, and the Navy does sea warfare, and the Air Force does aerial warfare, Space Force will do vacuum warfare.  Wow!  Talk about embracing the suck.

Shooting in Trenton

It seems that over the weekend, there was a mass shooting in Trenton, NJ.  You probably won't hear about it from the mainstream media.  It doesn't fit the narrative.

It seems that there was an art and music festival, and some gang-bangers had a beef with each other.  The main shooter (who is now room temperature) was a parolee, who had spent time in prison for murder.  The police knew that trouble was brewing, and was trying to close the event when the shooting started.

One dead, 22 injured.

This wasn't some deranged white guy with a rifle, this was gang violence with handguns.  It is probably the most common violence (except maybe domestic violence) that large cities have to deal with.  Bad guys with guns show up at a place where people gather to celebrate.

One dead, 22 injured, but don't expect to see politicians lining up to do interviews.  Don't expect to see high-school kids calling for new laws.  Don't expect to see senators holding committee meetings.
It doesn't outrage them, and it certainly isn't news-worthy.

The hypocrisy is galling.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Sunday Aftrnoon

It's Father's Day, the kids have come and gone and I'm nursing a vodka-tonic.  Listening to music onn YouTube.  Damned if I didn't come across and EmmyLou Harris song that is a Cajun waltz.  Anytime you combine a waltz beat, with accordion, mandolin, and fiddle, it's Cajun music.



Happy Father's Day, y'all.

Friday, June 15, 2018

The Dardick

The Dardick was an interesting little gun that used something called trounds, which were triangular ammunition.  It was a space-age invention of the '60s.  Here's an NRA video about it.



For a deeper analysis, there are several YouTube videos online.  For example.



We were promised a lot of neat things in the '60s that never seemed to make it to market.  The Dardick and the Gyrojet were two that did make it to market.

I'm still waiting for my flying car.  The 21st century is pretty much a disappointment.

The Cimarron SA Frontier

Last June, casting about for a nice little club revolver, I happened upon the Cimarron El Malo.  It's a very nice little revolver, and I talked about it here.  What impressed me about the El Malo was that it was very smooth, right out of the box.   Very smooth.  It balanced well, and I showed it to some of my club members who were looking for revolvers.  They liked it, especially the price point, which was less than other suitable revolvers.

But, in March, the CFDA made the revolver illegal to use in sanctioned competitions, simply because the El Malo has an octagonal barrel.  The rules are the rules, and the octagonal barrel was banned on Colt clones, because we are unable to find any Colt revolver of the period that was manufactured with an octagonal barrel.  Hence, they are not  "faithful reproductions" for purposes of CFDA sanctioned competition.

I put a call to Cimarron, and asked if they made a revolver revolver identical to the El Malo, but with a round barrel.  The rep at Cimarron told me that they did have such a revolver, the PP410, that they market as the SA Frontier.    But, he told me, they were out-of-stock, and until they had sufficient orders, they wouldn't b making any.  I admit that I was perplexed, because the El Malo is mad by Pitta, and in fact, I wasn't aware that Cimarron made any firearms.

Still, I've been checking my go-to firearms dealer for the Cimarron PP410.  It's legal for comptetion, and while I fight the rules about octagon barrels on 1873 clones, it would be nice to have a leal revolver for my club members to evaluate.  My go-to dealer is grabagun.com and I"ve been checking them for the Cimarron PP410, which they tell me is the El Malo with a round barrel.  Lo and behold, they finally have them in stock, so I ordered two of them as club guns.



Hopefully, they'll be in next week, and I can show them to the club members who like the El Malo.

Four Hours

Zach and I mowed the lawn this morning then headed to the lumber yard.  After buying materials, we spent four hours installing a roof on the project bathroom.  I feel like we made good progress and we're taking the rest of the day off.  Tomorrow, we have to find the water line (I've got a pretty good idea where it is), and that's going to require shovel work.  While we're digging, we might as well expose the sewer line so we'll know what we are dealing with. 

Projects like this are daunting, because in a bathroom, you have to have incoming water, sewerage, electrical all installed before you can start putting up interior walls.  To the un-educated observer, it looks like you're spending a lot of time spinning your wheels.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

The Gyrojet

A short lived artifact from the early 1960s.  The Gyrojet was an attempt to make a small, handheld rocket launcher.



I remember seeing these things for sale in magazines.

Pride Month

It's Pride Month. - Who knew?  I certainly didn't before I read an article about the CEO of Twitter being harangued about eating at Chick-Fil-A.
"You must love the taste of bigotry!" one person wrote in response.
 "Why is Twitter boosting a notoriously anti-gay company during #PrideMonth?" another person wrote.
It's no secret that Chick-Fil-A is a Christian company that espouses traditional Christian values.  They also make excellent chicken.  I've eaten at Chick-Fil-A, when it was convenient.  Not for the politics, but because of the chicken.  Not every purchase has to be a political decision.

Buffalo Wild Wings, for example, has a no-gun policy.  I've never eaten in one, not so much for the politics, but because I make very good chicken wings at home.  And, the one BWW store in this area is all the way across town.  It's simply easier to cook them myself.  It ain't hard.

I've been a customer of Pregressive Insurance for years.  Not because of their politics, but because they've always treated me right.

But, hey!  If you want to boycott a company because you don't like their politics, it's a (mostly) free country

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Golden Buzzer

I don't know if you watch America's Got Talent, but it's a fun show, and I normally catch it on YouTube.

I'm also, like most of my generation, a Janis Joplin fan, and recently a little gal came on that reminds me of Joplin.



That was quite a performance.

More Tomatos

We still have fresh, vine-ripened tomatoes, and I"ll be darned if I'm going to let them spoil.


Good, thick cut Wright's bacon with fresh tomatoes on fresh light bread.  It doesn't get any better than that.  Put lettuce on it if you must, but I'll take mine as bacon and tomato.

Wait... Wut? End Chivalry?

One male feminist in the news is... wait,... what?  A male feminist?
…the idea that women should be cherished and put on pedestals fosters what’s known as benevolent sexism, which subtly demeans women as fragile and less competent. It reinforces a sexual script in which a man takes charge while a woman remains passive.
He doesn't know any real women, evidently.  Strong, independent, capable women who deserve to be cherished.  Women who understand the difference between men (real men) and the women they love. I try every day to show my lady that she is cherished; the center of my world.

As a corollary to that idea, I try to extend that courtesy to all women.  I'll hold the door, I'll stand aside to let them pass, and I'll be as courteous as I can be.  That's what men do, or should do.  Strong, capable, independent women (such as the ones who fill my world), don't need the door held for them, but they've earned the right to be cherished.  Simple courtesy is never demeaning.

I would remind the reader that chivalry is a cultural system that requires standards of conduct for both men and women. 

Great Photo

Great photo of a soldier firing an AT4.


The AT4 is a light, anti-armor weapon designed and manufactured by BOFORS of Sweden.

It's a single-use weapon packaged and distributed as one issue of ammunition.  Once it is fired, the launcher is discarded.  It is intended to give light infantry an anti-armor punch, and I'm sure that it is useful against other hardened structures, like bunkers and buildings. 

Great photo!

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Tomatoes

The vine-ripened tomatoes are coming in, and it's that season.


These ain't no Mexican, hot-house tomatoes.  These are south Louisiana, ripened on the vine tomatoes.  Chilled in the 'fridge, sliced, with just a little salt and pepper and some mayonnaise.

It's what is for supper.

Racoon

So, there's this raccoon climbing a St . Paul skyscraper.


After climbing 22 stories, he decided to find a convenient ledge and take a nap.  I don't know what he is looking for, but I hope he finds it.

Interesting

Digging around in the public record, I find that my home parish (Rapides Parish, LA) has 84,174 registered voters.  The voters in this parish are primarily Democratic by a small margin, 34K to 27K, but a significant number of voters doesn't list a party, 21K are neither Dem or Rep.

However, in the last big gubernatorial election,  where we elect a bunch of state and parish offices (to include the Sheriff), only about 28,000 votes were cast in that election.  Only a third of those people who registered to vote bothered to actually go to the polls and make their vote count.

I'm just sayin'.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Texting and Walking.

I see stuff like this all the time at work.  People are funny.

Socialism - Lite

Reports of the demise of Social Security have been coming for many years.  This morning, in the Detroit News, we get another prediction of doom.
This week we learned Social Security will spend more than it collects this year for the first time since 1983. Unless trends change, the new go-bust date for the retirement program is 2034.
Social Security has never played any significant role in my retirement planning.  At age 65, I'll be drawing retirements from the military, the state, and local governments   Social Security is going to be an extremely minor player.  However, I am required by law to buy Medicare, another government ponzi scheme that will soon overspend its budget.
Even worse news is that Medicare, the retiree health care program, will be spent out by 2026 — I may not even be retired yet.
I have been forced, since I joined the workforce in the early '70s to participate in both these unsustainable schemes.  Anyone with a brain could see that that the systems were going broke.  These two programs are Socialism LIte, and everywhere that socialism has been tried, it has failed.

Yet, this still comes as a surprise to some people.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Shop Project Phase II

This afternoon, we began Phase II of the shop project.  Shortly after lunch, a club member who is also a professional carpenter came by and framed up a 6 ft by 8 ft bathroom. There is a lot left to do, both waters (potable and sewer), electricity, toilet installation, and trim, but the bones are up and I can start hanging the guts.

Two hours, forty minutes from a bare corner to this skeleton of a room.  Not bad at all.  It really helps to have a professional tradesman in the club.

Saturday, June 09, 2018

Maximus

Maximus (Max for short) is a big ol' dog.  About 80 pounds, he's a German Shepherd who needed a home.  I don't know the full story, but my daughter-in-law, soon to be a DVM found him and just couldn't let him go.  Max needed a forever home, and second son Matt agreed to take him in.

DIL and Max.  Max is very attentive.
Max is seven (7) years old, and a very calm, very well behaved dog.  He's a guard dog by temperament.  I was hassling a grandkid on the patio and Max was very interested, making sure that I wasn't hurting the boy.



DIL was looking for a forever home for Max, and second-son decided to take him.  Second son lives way out in the country, with several acres.  It should be a prefect home for a big dog.  Plenty of room to roam, and lots of terrain to explore.  Once Max settles in, you can believe that no one is coming on that place without his permission.

Friday, June 08, 2018

Young'Uns Fishing

I've got a young fisherman down the road, and he walks over and fishes in the pond.  Earlier this week, he showed me the latest catch.


The big one is 5 lbs, 4 oz, the other two are in the mid 4 lb range.  Not a bad haul for an afternoon fishing.  They put them back in the pond so that they can catch them again.

The Maine Systm

It looks like Maine is going to try out a new system for statewide elections.  It works like this:
Maine will be the first place to use the system, called ranked-choice voting, in statewide races this June (it’s already used in some local elections). The system kicks in for contests that have three or more candidates. Here’s how it works:
Voters rank the candidates in their party’s primary in order of preference.
If no candidate gets an outright majority, the candidate who got the fewest first-place votes is eliminated.
The second-place votes of those who supported the eliminated candidate then get distributed to the remaining candidates.
The process continues until one candidate gets more than 50 percent of the first-place votes and is declared the winner.
Interesting.  Louisiana (and several other states) use what is called a "jungle" primary, where all candidates from whatever party compete in one primary.  The top two vote-getters move to the primary, regardless of party affiliation.  Our system lads to some weird results, but after several decades of using that system, we're used to it.

The ranked-choice system is innovative and certainly bears watching.

Thursday, June 07, 2018

Utter Nonsense

I just saw this nonsense on the Book of Face.


I honestly don't give a damn.  I'm not boycotting them, I just don't care.  The last NFL game that I actually cared about was Super Bowl 2001, when I invited Belle to met me at the party.  She and I had never mt face-to-face (we were just messaging at the time) and I told her that I"d be at the party at JJs Lounge if she wanted to meet me face-to-face.

She showed up about halftime, and we had a couple of drinks, had a few laughs and she left before the game was over.  We went dancing the next weekend, and we've been together ever since.

Honestly, I don't give a shit what the NFL does.  It really doesn't matter to me.  They are a bunch of overpaid men, playing a junior-high game.

Just Wow!

Seen on the Brownell's Facebook page, I cannot imagine what caused this failure.


It appears to be a 1911 slide that went catastrophically wrong.

Lunchgate

Evidently, the US Navy runs a dining facility in the White House.  According to reports, it is reserved for "White House officials, Cabinet members and other dignitaries".

Somehow, the press seems to think that Scott Pruitt, the head of the EPA, uses that facility a lot, and is using FOIA requests to find out how many times he uses it.  Somehow, the idea that a Cabinet member uses a dining facility reserved for Cabinet members is supposed to be some sort of scandal.  But, it's the First Amendment and if they want to waste their time chasing a scandal where a Cabinet member eats in a facility reserved for Cabinet members, good for them.

However, I don't blame Pruitt one bit.  The US Navy  puts on a pretty good feed bag, and when I get the chance, I would eat in a Navy mess.  The Standard Navy Breakfast is a thing of glory and will keep a fellow going all day.

Excited Delurium

Excited Delirium is a condition that I've seen may times during my tenure as a police officer.  But, we didn't have a name for it until the past several years.  It's a big deal in police work recently (the past two or three years) and officers are being trained on how to recognize it and deal with it.    It can be caused by any number of things, including chemical intoxication, and manifests in various ways.  But the affected person shows various signs.  Extremely irrational behavior, dilated pupils, sweating, often elevated body temperature (which causes them to shed clothing, often being partially dressed, or nude).

The police often get called, because the person may be hyper-aggressive or acting bizarrely.  But, excited delirium is more of a medical issue than a criminal issue.   But, the police are called because the person is "acting crazy".  So, we have to deal with the issue, normally when it is at its height.

The problem is that the subject is often hyper-aggressive, delusional, and has elevated strength. One officer, no matter how competent, fit, or highly trained, is often insufficient to deal with excited delirium.  So we call for backup.  It normally takes several officers to handle a person with excited delirium.  We don't want to hurt the subject, and we don't want to get hurt either.  This is more of a medical issue than a criminal prosecution, so we want to be as gentle as we can be.  It isn't an easy job.

The other problem is something that the medical and mental health professions are beginning to understand, and that is that these people often die as a result of their delirium.  These folks are often fragile, medically, and they exhibit some symptoms (elevated body temperature in the 106-108 range, rapid heartbeat, etc), and when they start coming down, the keep going down, and they die suddenly.

Death is a natural condition.  We're all going to die.  Lots more people die in hospitals than die in police custody, but you don't hear about the people who die in hospitals.  When someone dies in police custody, it is a headline, and it is often assumed to be our fault.  Very often, it's not our fault.  No police officer wants anyone to die in custody, but it happens.

Excited Delirium is a challenge to police officers nationwide.  We've all seen it, and now we're being trained on how to deal with it.  That's a good thing, both for the affected person and for the police officer.

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Retrainer Day 3

Today was classroom.  First Aid, CPR, Excited Delirium (which is a big deal these days), and Chemical Agents.

I still have to do Ethics and Sexual Harassment as online courses, but Ill get those done over the course of the next few days.

Retrainer is over.  I am once again, a highly trained, completely qualified Peace Officer for the state of Louisiana.

Tuesday, June 05, 2018

Retrainer Day 2

Defensive Tactics today.  Strikes, hits, kicks, take-downs, handcuffing.

Yeah it sucked.  I t always sucks, but it keeps us alive.  My shoulders are sore.

That is all.

Monday, June 04, 2018

38th Retrainer

I qualified with the handgun again today.  Not as highly as I would have liked  but I qualified.  My excuse is that Belle and I rolled in this morning at 1:30, after leaving Amarillo, TX yesterday at 2:00 p.m.  And, of course, the macular degeneration, which never helps.  At any rate,  I managed to squeak out a qualification, so I can keep my POST certification. 

Next, force-on-force training, which was really a lot better than I anticipated.  The training was more realistic, which is always nice.  They simulated an active-shooter in a school (and yes, we were using a real school), with simunition.  These are little paint balls that run in a Glock.  They're cooler than shit.

Anyway, the way the scenarios played out, one SRO played the SRO, and the active shooter showed up.  Other SROs were staged outside, and we practiced making up tams on the fly, just exactly like the real-world situation would play out as more cops showed up to respond to the radio transmissions.

The first scenario, when I entered the building, the SRO had already corned the goblin and settled his hash, so I helped clear the remaining portions of the building.

The second scenario, I was the second guy in the building,   I was coming down the hall as the goblin tried to  ambush the SRO, so I got a shot on him.  Hit him square n the ass, which isn't normally covered by armor.  That shot induced a charlie-horse in his upper leg, and he fell over, complaining mightily.

I sat out the third scenario, to let other people play.  The fourth scenario, the goblin got away from the SRO, so we started seeping for him.  He tried to ambush me, but I put two in his ribcage.  He once again fell over,   Hes a good guy and wouldn't have gone down if

Tomorrow is DT (Defensive Tactics).  DT SUcks, but we  need it to keep out certification.

Here's what the front of a training pickup looks like.


Retrainer continues.

Saturday, June 02, 2018

US Nationals, Day 2

Belle and I decided a few weeks ago, not to shoot the US Nationals, for reasons entirely our own.  However,  Grandson Zach wanted to shoot it, so we paid his fees.  This is his first year to step up from the youth to th Junior division, which mans h shoots with the men.  Yeah he's running with the big dogs now.  And, he's holding his won

After 8 rounds, he's lost three, which means he's still in the match.   A shooter has to lose four (4) before you are out of the match, and Zach, at the end of day one, only has three losses.  Experience counts, and  we'll see what happens tomorrow, but right now, h'e's still in it.

I put together a highlight reel.



I can't wait to see what happens tomorrow.

Emo Pain

Oh, I saw this over at Wirecutter's and had to laugh.


Oh, yeah, I got bullied and called bad names.  Before breakfast.    We called it Basic Training.  Seven weeks, three days of bullying and name calling.Then I went to other units where there was more bullying and name calling.  Then, through discipline and performance I started to earn respect.

You want respect?  Earn it.  As for sympathy, that falls in the dictionary between shit and syphilis.

Friday, June 01, 2018

Death and Taxes

Our legislature is in special session trying to find revenue, and I say to them "Good Luck", but I hope they fail.  Really, I do.  The problem is, the bastards don't know how to set priorities.  And, when we hear about budget shortfalls, we hear about cuts to the LSU hospital system, which serves the uninsured and the Medicaid folks. 

I have little sympathy for folks without medical insurance, and I"ll be the first to day that I can be educated, but I never had free insurance when I was raising kids, and I paid doctor's bills.  Lots of doctor's bills. 

Somehow, over the last 40 years, we've come to the  idea that medical care is a right.  I disagree. Medical care, for the most part, is an economic transaction.  I don't trust the medical proession (with a few exceptions ) and I certainly don't trust government bureaucrats who think that they know more about medical care than my doctor.

As far as I'm concerned, the state should do three things.  1) fix the damned road, 2)  Run a prison system, and 3)....  Well maybe there are only two things.

We should put all of our money in roads and prisons.  We don't need a department of Education, we don't need a department of Health and Hospitals.  We don't need anything but a Highway department and a prison system.  Everything else is frivolous.  Think of all the money we'd save.

But, hey!  What do I know?  I'm just a taxpayer.

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Final Day, Southern Territorials.

Today was the last day of the  Southern Territorials.  Don't worry, we start the US National tomorrow morning.

PawPaw hugging on Pixie Quick, a shooter out of Fort Worth.
Akarate Zach, relaxing before the finals.
Belle, hugging on Diamondback Billy, a shooter from Pocohontas, AR
And finally, a video of Akarate Zach's last two matches.  He placed 4th in Junior Division, and 62nd out of 90 men.  For his first match shooting wit the men-folk, he did quite well.



We're in the hotel room now, resting.  Tomorrow we start the US Nationals and everyone gets to start over fresh.  It's going to b a great weekend.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Southern Territorials

Today we shot the main match of the Southern Territorials.  This is a precursor to the US Nationals that we'll shoot on Saturday.  This was a 4X match, which means that if you lose four matches, you ar out of the cometition.

I went out in the 6th round, as did Zach.  Belle hanged in till the 7th round and we are all pleased with our performamce today.  There are some very capable shooters who went-out before we did.

A little video of Zach in the 5th round.



Tomorrow, we shoot brackets, which is a match based on your times that we shot tody.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Amarillo

Belle, Zach, and I are in Amarillo getting ready for the shooting to start tomorrow.  We spent the afternoon helping to set up, then went to eat and are now in the hotel,
The chaos that is setting up.  It will look a lot better tomorrow when we get to the matches.

The Venue:  We're in the Tri-State Fairgrounds.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Angel Flight

Monday, Traveling

We left  home this morning, taking our time.  Not getting into a hurry.  Helluve traffic snafu in Shreveport, LA, I-20 turned into a parking lot for over an hour.  The rest of the trip was fairly uneventful, except for the cluster-fark that is always Fort Worth.

We're northwest of Fort Worth tonight.  In Vernon, TX, about 175 miles from Amarillo.  It's interesting watching the foliage reduce in size once you get past Fort Worth.    Out  here, there aren't any trees; just bushes.


IT's not the first time I've seen these things, but I am amazed every time I roll through a wind farm.  They are gigantic.  Huge.

We'll be in Amarillo tomorrow morning.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Red Beans and Rice

These are so simple, it's totally unbelievable.

Red Beans and Rice

Ingredients
2 lbs dry red beans
2 lbs good smoked sausge
6 cups dry rice
Water
Salt
Pepper

Prep Time 12 hours

Prep and Cooking
Twelve hours before you want red beans, rinse your beans in a colander and put them in the crock pot.  We use an 8-quart cooker.  Cut your sausage into rounds, and add the sausage as well.  Add water to cover the sausage/beans, and add a little salt and pepper.  Put the lid on the crock pot.  and st it on low.  Go to bed.  Seriously, you're done.  We put this pot on about 8:00 pm and I took the picture about 11:00 am the next morning

Shortly before lunch, put on a pot of rice (We make six sups of rice when feeding the family). 

Serve beans/sausage over rice.  Make some cornbread.  It's lunch (or dinner, if you put the beans on when you make coffee in the morning).

We fed fifteen (15) people for lunch today, and all the beans are gone.

Shooting Saturday

The Cross Branded Peacemakers held their monthly match yesterday.  It was a good match, held indoors at our home range, so the rain didn't bother us.  And it rained.  Oh my, how it rained.

The shooting area.  This place is my little slice of heaven.
Our pastor, working the electronics.  Pastors are great announcers.
The spectators area.  The ladies seem to be comfortable.
Belle, Zach and I will be packing this afternoon.  Lots of stuff to gather and get ready to put in the van.  Tomorrow morning we leave for Amarillo, TX, where we'll attend the Southern Territorial Championships and the CFDA US National Championships.  Yesterdays match was a great tune-up because we won't be able to strap up until Wednesday morning.

I'm really looking forward to this trip.  It's time to get out of town, see something we haven't seen, and have a little fun.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Hey, There, Alberto

The first tropical storm of the season, and technically, it's not hurricane season yet.  Tropical Storm Alberto cranked up over the past few days and is threatening to hit the mainland US.  The five day probability is below.

Hurricane season normally runs from June 1 - October 1, but Alberto is pushing the calendar by a few days  When her gets here, Belle and I should be in west Texas.  We'll have a house-sitter here looking after Beau and we'll be talking with her frequently.

The Unfortunate Third Amendment

Amendment III
No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Yesterday, I shared a video by Collon Noir, in which he tongue-in-cheek suggested that the
government limit the ability of the press to report on mass shootings.  If you watched the whole video, you learned that he really wasn't suggesting that the government abridge the First Amendment  He was using hyperbole to demonstrate that there are no common-sense laws we could pass that would NOT violate the Constitution.

Just as in the case of the 2nd Amendment there are no "common-sense" laws that would not not infringe on the rights of The People.

Then we come to the Third Amendment.  In times of peace, troops cannot be quartered in priate homes without the consent o the Owner.    No one argues about that.  It's pretty plain.  We consider it one of the bedrock principles of our republic.   Yet, there it sits, forlorn and un-debated.

I agree that the government should nor restrict the ability of the press to report on whatever they choose to report on.

I also agree that soldiers should not be quartered in private homes.

I also agree that the right of The People to keep and bear arms should not be infringed.

I believe that over-reporting mass shootings drives the attention culture and inspires copycat incidents.  But, that's for the press to consider.  Our rabid press should be responsible in the manner in which they report the news.  But, it's not the governments place to limit them.

Later today, I'll be teaching and preaching gun safety.  I have heard reports that we'll have some new shooters today.  Some of them may never have handled a firearm, and it's my responsibility to get it right.  I've also been told that the press may attend, to do a feature on the Cross Branded Peacemakers.  Today is going to be a lot of fun.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Some Photos From Last NIght

Our church has what we call Prayer and  Practice where we let the folks with horses get out in the arena, and practice their skills, and we have a short devotional during that time, to re reflect on the bible while on horseback.

Our pastor, Herb Dickerson, with a tablet studying his scripture.
One of the youth, praying during the devotional.  Her horse was very well behaved.
One of the youth, running the barrels.
Two of the leders discussing the finer points of arena mud.  With all this rain lately, we're becoming expert on arena mud.
We've been getting a lot of pup-up thunderstorms lately, and the arena shows it.  Still, it was good to meet wit the horsey congregation yesterday and do horse things while we prayed.

Tomorrow, the Peacemakers meet for our monthly match.   Then, on Monday, Belle, Zach and I depart for Amarillo, TX.  We'll be there for the Southern Territorials and the US National championships.

Take A Knee

I see that the NFL is revising it's "take a knee" policy, and the usual suspects are outraged.  Hot Air has a good round-up, and the whiney twits are coming out in force.  I say "twits" because they're twitter-ing.

It's racist, and it's all about the First Amendment.


Dude!  Spare me.  These overpaid employees can say whatever they want to say when they're off the clock, but the First Amendment doesn't has limits.  I know, for example, that I criticize my boss at my own peril.  And, I know that the things I say can rear up and bite me on the butt.

Of course, none of this really matters to me on a personal level.  I quit watching the NFL several years ago for reasons just such as the kneeling kerfluffle.  Personally, if someone won't stand for the American flag, I don't have much respect for them anyway. 

Armed Citizen

A good guy with a gun stops a bad guy with a gun.  According to CNN.

Armed citizen kills shooter at Oklahoma City restaurant

That's the headline, and it says it all.

Animals

A new poll conducted by Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll says that President Trump calling MS-13 members "animal" is okay.
Fifty-six percent of American adults in the Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll said referring to members of the gang as “animals” is fair, compared to 44 percent who said the characterization was unfair.
Most Americans know that the president was using hyperbole.  Only the screeching harpies in the media and Democratic party (sorry for the redundancy) took exception, but they are still butt-hurt that he is the president. 

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Want To Stop Mass Shootings?

Collon Noir says we should stop inspiring new killers by mass media coverage.



I agree with him.  Attention-seeking is at an all-time high, and if we quit giving the goblins attention, we just might not inspire others.

I'm the NRA, and I am freedom's safest palce.

New Blood Pressure Guidelines

According to the UPI, the blood pressure guidelines are about to change, and as many as one-third of US adults may need medication under the new regime.
The American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association redefined high blood pressure at 130/80 in November, down from the previous level of 140/90, based on new evidence supporting a lower threshold.
My gal, who has been a registered nurse for many years, firmly believes that this sort of thing is a cabal of doctors and pharmaceutical companies simply to sell pills.  She maintains that the numbers she saw when she began nursing were much higher than they are today, and those numbers, generally across the board, caused no real problems.  But, she says, as ad doctors became pill-pushers and pharmaceutical companies learned how very profitable that lower numbers could be, the numbers started dropping so that doctors could sell more pills.

I'm sure that all this can be explained by good science, but just exactly how long do they expect us to live, anyway?

TISAS

The national news is boring me these days, so we're not going to talk about that.

Instead, I saw a short video from Brownell's where they talk about a pistol they saw at SHOT show, the Tisas Regent, which is apparently a clone of the Browning Hi-Power.  I admit that I've never used, carried, or shot a Hi-Power, but those guys I know that have used them say that they are very nice.  I read somewhere, years ago, that the Hi-Power was John Borwning's natural evolution of the 1911.

I may soon be in the market for another semi-auto, and this little piece may be just the ticket.  It has Brownell's seal of approval.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Rep Swalwell: Ban ARs, Prosecute Owners.

Rep Swalwell, a D from CA wants to ban AR rifles, have a buyback, and prosecute those owners who refuse to comply.  Yeah, seriously.

Tucker Carlson takes him to task over his plan.  T here's a great back-and-forth when Tucker asks him why his bodyguards should have better weapons than the general American populace.  Swalwell thinks it's a ridiculous argument, of course.



Swalwell is an elitist twit, a fitting representative of the Democratic Party.

More Comey's Disgrace

To the untrained eye, it's becoming more and more apparent that the FBI, under the direction of James Comey during the Obama administration, became a thoroughly politicized organization  It seems that some agents want subpoenas so that they can testify freely before Congress.
The sources claim there is a demand within the agency to prosecute former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe. They also say the bureau has become totally politicized.
If McCabe is preosecutable, then so Comey should be easy to indict.  This happened on his watch.  There is always a certain amount of internal politics in any police agency.  It's the Director's job to keep that tamped down, to make the agency serve the people without regard to political persuasion.  We are supposed to uphold the law without passion or prejudice.  The Obama administration weaponized both the FBI and the IRS against his political opponents.  Comey, McCabe, et al, let it happen.  They are despicable. 

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Mallards

Mallards in the front yard.  In my younger days I hunted them, but nowadays I'm content to let them eat the bugs out of the grass.


Several Things

With the media blitz in the aftermath of the Santa Fe shooting, some wags are calling for more gun restrictions, but they're awfully short on making sense of themselves.  For example, Powerline links to an AP reporter calling exactly that.
[T]he state’s 20-year dominance by the Republican Party all but guarantees the meetings will be dominated by calls to boost school security and “harden” campuses — an idea backed by the NRA — instead of demands for gun restrictions, said Cal Jillson, political science professor at Southern Methodist University.
As one cmmmenter said earlier, the call for solutions to this problem often come from people (reporters) who are least familiar with the problem.  I'd ask which "restrictions" might have solved this problem?  The shooter in Texas used a shotgun and a revolver.  Both of these are technology from the 1800s.   How about a law that prohibits people from bringing guns on campus?  We already have that.  How about a law that criminalizes murder?  We already have that too.

Others talk about hardening schools.  Making it more difficult to get into a school.  The problem with that scenario is that when most schools were designed and built back in the '70s, '80s, or '90s, the state-of-the-art was to make schools look like welcoming places.    The high school I worked in, back at the turn of the century, had 14 different entrances in the main building, with two gymnasiums and one other classroom building.  It also had a city street that ran right through it.  The school was designed for ease of access.  That's not a good thing in the current climate.

But, hardening schools, limiting access, changing traffic flows, costs money, and cash-strapped school districts may mot have the available cash to do the re-design.  Remember, these are government facilities with all the design, permitting, and bureaucratic safeguards to impede rapid progress.  But, trust me, school administrators all across the US are thinking about these things.

As horrific as these incidents are, we have to ask ourselves what is driving them?  It's not the gun, the guns have been around forever.  I can remember a simpler time, where I strapped a shotgun to the handlebars of my bicycle and met friends to go hunting.  Several adolescents rode across a goodly portion of town and no one thought anything about it.

So, what's chagend?  The culture.  We have a sub-culture of kids (and I'm excluding jihadis here) who are emulating the very worst possible examples.  This Santa Fe shooting was almost a carbon-copy of the Columbine script..  The problem is not the guns, it is the culture.  Somehow, we have to change the culture.  It won't be easy and it won't be a quick fix, but we have to change the culture.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Fortunate Son

This is how we rolled when I was a young warrior.  I never made it to the 'Nam, but these are the guys that trained me, and I was Air Cav before I was Armored Cav.



Watching that brings back memories.

Uh, No. Just No

Anyway, I just wanted to drop you a line and let you know that I now actually do want to take your guns.
All of your guns.
Right now.
Uh, no, I don't think that's going to happen.
So now I’m angry. Now I’m finished trying to reason with you. So now I, a guy who was ambivalent about guns just a few years ago, want to take your guns away. All of them. I want to take them all and melt them down and shape them into a giant sphere and then push it at you so you have to run away from it like Indiana Jones for the rest of your lives. I want Ted Nugent to roam the halls of his gunless house, sighing wearily until he dies. I want to end this thing once and for all, so that all of you who have prioritized the sale of guns over the lives of children have to sit quietly and think about what you’ve done. God help me, I want to take all of your guns out of your hands, by myself, right now.
 We're tired of trying to reason with you too.  Gun control law after gun control law, each passed with the promise of concrete change, and when nothing changed, you wanted more gun control laws. 

Guns aren't the problem.  They're not the answer either.  The problem is disaffected youth who have a low threshold of violence.  And, the left has let this happen.    The anything-goes mentality has finally started to spawn its crop.   But, because you're unwilling to face the problem, unwilling to make the tough choices, you call for yet more gun control.  We've had gun control in this country since 1964 and still you call for more.  Guns aren't the problem. 

I  note, with some sense of irony, that all the mas-murderers lately have been Democrats.  Yet, I don't hear any calls for Democrat control. 

But, you want to take my guns.  You, personally.    It's laughable.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

The Shop Project - Phase 1 Complete.

For those of you who have been following the shop project, Phase 1 has been complete for a couple of months, and we're just about ready to move on to Phase 2.

So, I put together a little video (7 minutes) that will give you a walk-around inside the building.

I'm suing the new camera, learning all the ins-and-outs of video, along with editing and such.  I probably learned as much in the last two hours as I care to learn for a while.  Scripting is good and "winging" it is bad.  But, here goes.



For a first attempt, I'm satisfied with it.  I have a lot to learn.

The Social Media Drives School Shootings

Interesting article.   Over at National Review.  It links mass shooting events (particularly school shootings) to social media.  He talks about thresholds, which is a part of the Broken Windows theory of policing.
But Granovetter thought it was a mistake to focus on the decision-making processes of each rioter in isolation. In his view, a riot was not a collection of individuals, each of whom arrived independently at the decision to break windows. A riot was a social process, in which people did things in reaction to and in combination with those around them. Social processes are driven by our thresholds—which he defined as the number of people who need to be doing some activity before we agree to join them. In the elegant theoretical model Granovetter proposed, riots were started by people with a threshold of zero—instigators willing to throw a rock through a window at the slightest provocation. Then comes the person who will throw a rock if someone else goes first. He has a threshold of one. Next in is the person with the threshold of two. His qualms are overcome when he sees the instigator and the instigator’s accomplice. Next to him is someone with a threshold of three, who would never break windows and loot stores unless there were three people right in front of him who were already doing that—and so on up to the hundredth person, a righteous upstanding citizen who nonetheless could set his beliefs aside and grab a camera from the broken window of the electronics store if every one around him was grabbing cameras from the electronics store.
So, thresholds get lowered with each repetitive event, like throwing rocks in a riot.   Then, the argument might be that Columbine lowered the threshold.
Then came Columbine. The sociologist Ralph Larkin argues that Harris and Klebold laid down the “cultural script” for the next generation of shooters. They had a Web site. They made home movies starring themselves as hit men. They wrote lengthy manifestos. They recorded their “basement tapes.” Their motivations were spelled out with grandiose specificity: Harris said he wanted to “kick-start a revolution.” Larkin looked at the twelve major school shootings in the United States in the eight years after Columbine, and he found that in eight of those subsequent cases the shooters made explicit reference to Harris and Klebold. Of the eleven school shootings outside the United States between 1999 and 2007, Larkin says six were plainly versions of Columbine; of the eleven cases of thwarted shootings in the same period, Larkin says all were Columbine-inspired.
What has changed since Columbine?  That horrific event occurred in 1999, about the time that social media started the whole Facebook/Twitter/Instagram revolution.    High-scollers and college-age kids are much more conversant in social media than my generation ever was.  Communication is instant, and it is easy to find sites or forums that share interests.  The Columbine shooting has become nearly a template for mayhem, and the threshold had been lowered.
In other contexts, he’s elaborated further. The preparations for massacres are often extremely detailed. Shooters (and wannabe shooters) will often film videos, mimic the dress and poses of the Columbine killers, and otherwise copy the shooters who came before. Gladwell is hardly an NRA conservative — and he believes gun control “has its place” — but he also shares this grim warning: “Let’s not kid ourselves that if we passed the strictest gun control in the world that we would end this particular kind of behavior.”
It's easy to scream for gun control, but in my view, it's misplaced.  The events that we're seeing on a more frequent basis are not about guns, they are about how we communicate.  Communication has changed drastically over the past 20 years, and we're just now starting to grasp the implications.

Sunday Morning

It's supposed to be 92F under partly cloudy skies today.  That's not the record for this date, but it's close.  It's going to be hot today.  A good time to be inside with air conditioning, or alternately, in the shade.

The dog is adjusting to the heat, although as an old man, he doesn't want to spend as much time outside.  He is as happy in his climate-controlled house as we are.


The kids will be over in a little while for lunch.  I'd best get cracking.  Y'all have a nice Sunday.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Show Texas

Belle and Zach and I are going to be in the Panhandle of Texas the last week of May.  The Southern Territorials and US National championship of Cowboy Fast Draw will be held in Amarillo, TX  May 30-June 3rd.

I have heard about this musical at Palo Duro Canyon State Park, and I've heard that it's worth the time.


The link is here, and we're going.  I"ve already bought tickets for Friday, June 1st.

This looks like it's going to be a lot of fun.

Rodeo!

Rodeo is an old cowboy tradition, playing those games that a working cowboy has to master.    Our church is a cowboy church.  We have an arena, and we hold rodeos during the season.  Every 3rd Friday night we rodeo, and if you're just there to watch and enjoy some good, clean fun, it's free.


Pretty girls getting ready for the grand entrance.  Country girls, horses, patriotism and prayer.

They do it all at the church.  Here's a shot of a competitor taking a turn around the barrels.


And, of course, the bulls.  If you're in town, the Cross Branded Cowboy Church has rodeo every 3rd Friday night during the season. We'e at 6906 LA Highway 28 East, Pineville, LA.

The Santa Fe Incident

I'm sure that you've all read, by now, that a school in Santa Fe, TX, suffered a deadly incident yesterday.  Sadly, it's all too familiar. and details are starting to come out.  My prayers ad thoughts, f course, are for the families of the slain, and I hope for a speedy recovery for the wounded.

The goblin, who won't be named here is in police custody, alive and incarcerated.  I'm sure that we'll learn more about his motives in the weeks and months ahead.    As horrific as such things are, we tend to live in an immediate news-cycle.   The less we dwell on this misfit, the better we'll be.  But, there are several indicators that it was a planned event, with preparation.  Authorities have found improvised devices, such as grenades made from discarded CO2 cylinders and Molotov cocktails.  This shows some degree of planning and establishes intent, which will be important during his trial.

When I want generic, generally incorrect news, I go to USAToday.   They, and outher sources are reporting that the goblin used a shotgun and a revolver.  This particular paragraph made me snort.
High-powered rifles such as the AR-15 can be fired more than twice as fast as most handguns. The standard magazine for an AR-15 holds 30 rounds, allowing a shooter to continue firing uninterrupted for longer, making the weapon more lethal than other firearms, though clearly the use of any gun can be deadly, especially a shotgun at close range.
We note, for the record, that the goblin used a shotgun and a revolver.  Why USAToday included the discussion of the AR is a mystery.  It's almost as if they can't help themselves.  This paragraph is gratuitous column-fill and has no place in the article  And, we all know that the AR is not a "high-powered" rifle.  At best, it's an intermediate

But, rather than simply give us the news, USAToday decided to change the subject.  They are nearly as despicable as the goblin.

Friday, May 18, 2018

New Camera

I took the camera to work today to play with it.  When you're carrying a little black camera in your hand, people tend to not notice it.  Most of these photos were in stealth mode.  They had no idea tht I was taking pictures, even as we were talking.


That's my buddy Steve.  He doesn't like his picture to be taken.   Once he told me that, it was Game On.


Another picture of Steve, with a photo of Mr. Metoyer.   These two are custodians where I work, and we generally have bullshit sessions every morning.


Here's the guy we call The Pastor, because he's .... well... a pastor.  Nice guy and one who I counsel with quite a bit.  His cell phone is a continual companion.


Derelict building across the street.  This place used to be a Studebaker dealership.


The bell tower of St. Francis Xavier cathedral, right behind where I work.  And, yeah, they play the bells frequently.

That's enough for now.  It's Friday night, and it's time for a drink.


Thursday, May 17, 2018

New Camera

I found the new camera when I came in today.  Thanks, USPS and Camera Camera and Amazon.  I unboxed it, put the battery on to charge and waited an hour while I ran an errand.

The first thing that surprised me was the tiny size of this thing.  It's tiny, smaller and lighter than my smartphone.


While small in size, it seems to be big on   It will probably never take the place of my DSLR for some things, but it was bought to complement by DSLR, ot replace it.  It will certainly fit in a pocket and it takes good photos.

Zach and I took it out to the shop to see how it would do with low-light.  When we're taking pictures with the DSLR in the shop, with no flash (flash is verboten in CFDA), the   Here's one I took of Zach with the flash.


It's a big file, so you can click on it to embiggen it, but the skin tones are correct and the color of the wall is very, very close.

Here's one Zach took of me, behind the scorer's table, with the flash OFF.  Not bad at all for a tiny point-and-shoot.

I cropped it to get out some extraneous stuff, but the camera did very well, much better than my DSLR does in that situation.  I look a little pale,, and the wall color isn't exactly right.

What impressed me was the quality of the video.  One of the first things I took with it was a short, outdoor video, under our patio.  A friend, Susan had come over, and I took some video of her and Belle talking.



That's raw video, unedited, but I think it did okay.  I'll have to play with this little camera a bit more, but I think I'm going to like it just fine.

For the record, I bought this kit from Camera Camera through Amaon.  It came with a case, a spare battery, a selfie stick an SD card and some other gee-gaws.

After things calmed down around the house, I took the little camera out to the shop, put it on a tripod, and gave it a whirl.  This is probably where the video projects will be shot, and I learned a lot particularly that I'll need to turn off the A/C units while I'm filming.    But, for a first go-round, this isn't half bad.



I have a lot to learn about video work.

Aliens Among Us?

Well, why the hell not?
“Thus the possibility that cryopreserved Squid and/or Octopus eggs, arrived in icy bolides several hundred million years ago should not be discounted as that would be a parsimonious cosmic explanation for the Octopus’ sudden emergence on Earth circa 270 million years ago.”
I've seen a few octopii, and those are some alien looking critters.

Double Standards

A California teacher who had sex with a student will avoid jail time, will not be required to register as a sex offender, and will be able to re-apply to teach.  Yeah, seriously.
Samantha Ciotta pleaded guilty to having sex with a student at Beaumont High School in Beaumont, Calif., where she was a teacher. However, the plea deal offered by the California prosecutors allows her to avoid jail time and Ciotta won't have to register as a sex offender. Putting a cherry on top of the double standard, in a few years, she may be able to re-apply to teach again.
One would wonder what kind of sentence a male teacher would get for the same offense.  If it weren't for double standards, California wouldn't have any standards at all.

Trilling Feminism

Presented without comment.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Camera

I bought my first camera, I guess, at about age 19.  I was in basic training at Fort Knox and bought an Instamatic to take photos.  As I recall, it was inn my foot locker and got dissolved by a bottle of spilled bug dope.  Whatever was in that bug dope ate that camera until all that was left was the metal shutter assembly and a thin film of black plastic goo on the bottom of that drawer.  The Drill Sergeant was impressed.

Fast-forward to the mid '9-s when I bought a Canon SLR, the 35mm film camera.  I loved that camera and still have it, although I have upgraded to the digital version.    I still use that camera, but it's big and bulky.  It takes great photos, but it is big and bulky.  I've taken a few really great photos with this camera, and I don't consider myself a photographer; just a picture-snapper.

That said, I got this particular camera during Christmas 2010,  Canon, and everyone else has made remarkable strides in digital photography since that time.  The old DSLR still has a place in the camera bag, but nowadays I snap more pictures with my smartphone than anything else.  It's the camera I have with me, it's lightweight, it's convenient, and it's with me.  Like anyone else's smartphone, it takes photos and video, sometimes rivaling what is possible with the big bulky DSLR.

Recently, I started looking for a dedicated camera to complement my photo assets.  The companies have made remarkable strides in the technology, and I have a sooper-seekrit project coming up next year.  I wanted a camera to document the project, and one that would take credible video without sacrificing a month's salary.  So, like most modern researchers, I went immediately to YouTube and started looking at reviews.    I knew that I wanted good photos, 1080p video and reasonable sound quality while not stretching the bank account.

I settled on this one.  The Canon Powershot ELPH 360 HS.  It is supposed to be in later this week, and I"ll charge the battery and start playing with it.  I'm looking forward to seeing how the Image Stabilization works, how good the audio quality is, and how best to transfer short video clips.  It'll give me about 10 months to learn the camera before the project kicks off.

Rocket Man Blusters

Little Kim, the murderous "Rocket Man" of the hermit kingdom is threatening to pull out of talks with the US, for reasons that only he can fathom.  He's a paranoid little dictator, but evidently, the joint US/South Korean military exercises are the reason du jour.
North Korea has complained often about U.S. military exercises that partner with Japan or South Korea, characterizing them as rehearsal for an invasion of North Korea.
If I were Trump, I'd send Kim a firm message.  Either he show up at the summit, as agreed, or the US will indeed hold joint exercises with South Korea.... in North Korea.

The best thing that the North Korean people could do is to rise up and hang this little sonofabitch from a short rope in a public square.

Gavel

The shop project continues.  We're using the interior of the building, but the little patch of land between the road and the building was soft.  After a rain, it was yard to get to the building without rutting the yard.  A driveway was necessary, and gravel seemed like the appropriate solution.

Locally, the guys in the trade call this stuff 610.  It's crushed limestone with limestone dust.  After it is spread and has a chance to settle, maybe get a rain on it, it packs very firmly.  And, a $575 for a 15 ton load, it's reasonable.  I contracted for two loads.  The guy delivered one last week, and one yesterday.  I asked for a "gate spread", where he opens the gate of the dump truck just a bit,  raises the bed and drives as it pours out.  There is less manual labor like that.  And, when you're spreading 30 tons of rock, less manual labor is good.


It is 80 feet from the road to the door, and the building is 40 feet wide.  That's pretty good coverage for a gate spread, and I have to move some gravel, but not much.  I can park vehicles three-across now with no danger of miring the vehicles in mud.  Of course, when it's dry, they can park anywhere, but when it's wet, I don't have to worry about bogged vehicles.

A little bit at a time, this project is coming along nicely.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Nikki Haley, our ambassador to the United Nations, strafes the Security Council with reason, then carpet-bombs them with facts. 



I note that Iran is threatening to list the names of people they bribed to get the nuclear deal, along with the amounts paid.    I think that they should name names.

Exit question:  Can we put the entire upper echelon of the Obama administration in jail?

Asking The Easy Questions

It seems that CNN is entirely unable to ask the easy questions.  When I see a report like this:
Dozens of funerals were expected to take place after 60 Palestinians were killed in demonstrations, according to figures provided by the Palestinian Ministry of Health. Among the dead were eight children, including eight-month-old Laila Anwar Ghandour. The health ministry said the baby was asphyxiated by tear gas.
When I see a report like that, the first question that springs to mind is, "What kind of sub-human animal brings a toddler to a violent protest?"   The answer, of course, is that Hamas is well known for their use of human shields.  Eight children dead?  Who thought that bringing children was a good idea?

I have no sympathy for anyone who puts innocent children in danger.  Of course, this is CNN, so the report may not be accurate, nor might even not be based in reality.

Oh, and this can't be Trump's fault.  I've seen his schedule, he wasn't even there.

The Tax Cut and the Economy

So, Politico says that the tax cut is NOT the reason that the economy is booming.  You can go to the link and read the whole thing, but they list a lot of reasons, many of them good reasons, why the tax cut has noting to do with the economy coming back to life.

And, in large part, the author is correct.  The tax cuts haven't had a chance to kick-in yet, to power the economy.  So, we'll give Politico credit for that.  The tax cuts took effect in January, and haven't had a chance to make a measurable difference in the economy.    So, what changed?

Simple.  Corporate confidence.  In January, 2017, the business climate changed.  We went from the oppressive, regulatory Obama administration to the business-friendly Trump administration. Business, both large and small felt confident in the business climate, were able to expand and hire more people, which in effect helped the economy by putting more disposable dollars in the hands of consumers.

The tax cuts will probably start to take effect in the next quarter.  Just in time for the mid-term elections.  We must understand, though, that consumer confidence is very regional.  Business confidence is also regional.  We might see a whole tot more consumer confidence in places like Texas than we might see in deep-blue California.

Wait until the tax cuts start showing an effect.  We're going to Make America Great Again.

UPDATE** Johnathan corrected a mistake above.  The year that Trump took over.  A common typo, and it's been corrected.