Monday, April 30, 2012

Monday Musiings

Al Gore, our past Vice President and current spokesman for weather warming everywhere, only earned a "D" in natural science as a sophomore at Harvard.  I'm aware that folks can learn stuff after college, but getting a D in a crip course like Natural Science doesn't give me a great deal of confidence about AlGore's creds.  What I do have confidence in is his absolute capacity for self-aggrandizement.

I spent a little time at the loading bench this afternoon, reassembling that .30-06 ammo.  It's got a good, sane charge under those 165 grain Gamekings.  Now, I'm looking for a good load with 150 grain bullets and IMR 4895 powder.  I've got a bunch of both and I'd like to combine them to make a good .30-06 load.

Bourbon whiskey tastes good on a Monday afternoon.

It's warm outside and I've got eggs boiling on the stove.  We're going to make a big tuna salad and have cold sammiches for supper.

My sergeant stopped by the school today and we sat under the trees, drank Dr. Pepper, and told lies to one another.  The worst part of working at a school is that I don't get to hang out with cops as much as I'd like.  Sometimes I'll go a month or so without seeing another cop and that just ain't right.

I think it's time for another bourbon.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Pulling bullets

As I was loading the range bag for the ill-fated trip to the range on Saturday, I pulled down some .30-06 ammo that I had loaded sometime in 2010.  I happened to check the label on the ammo and the powder charge didn't look right, so I pulled down the manuals to check.  Oh, hell, an over-charge.  I don't know what happened, but somehow I had loaded that ammo with what amounts to almost two full grains over the normal max load for that brass/bullet/primer/powder combination.  I'm no fan of over taxing my rifle, and I'm certainly no fan of breaking my face so I marked the box of ammo as bad and left it behind

SO, not wanting to waste most of the components, I got down the kinetic bullet puller and started pulling bullets.  This being a Sunday and grandkids were wandering about, I soon had one inquisitive kid looking over my shoulder.  We took the time to explain the process.  Discuss ramifications, even to go into the front yard and set a couple of powder charges on fire to demonstrate that modern smokeless powder burns rather than explodes.  Good stuff.

One day this week, I'll reload that ammo with a sane charge and take it to the range next Saturday, where I am reassured that I'll be able to fire my rifles without some special interest group to run me away from my tax-dollar range.

Sunday Morning Dawg

I realized that with all the excitement this weekend, I forgot to post a Sunday Dawg.  Shame on me.

Here's another of the dog eating fudgecicles.  I"ll try to do better next week, I promise.

That's Done

The annual high school prom is done.  PawPaw worked it as always and the ladies were sparkling and the gentlemen were handsome.  This is my ninth prom, and I can say that I've never had a real problem at a prom.  It's something that the students do for a little while, and the last thing they want is to cause any problems.  PawPaw doesn't tolerate problems at dances, and ending your evening with a call to make bail from the local jail puts a buzz-kill on the evening. As per usual, ninety percent of the students left after about an hour or so, to go to after-prom parties where the sort of activities they want to participate in are allowed.  There is a reason why the old expression "off like a prom dress" resonates a certain truth.  I'm sure that the parents don't want to hear it, but hey!

As is also usual, we had the bitter clingers, those who stay until the last dance, who are still there when we turn the lights on, and who we force to help us clean up the hall.  If they got their feeling hurt when I impressed their labor, then told them to un-ass the building, that's just another of life's lessons.  In a few more weeks they'll graduate and I'll really cease to care if their feelings are hurt.  The majority are going to be fine upstanding people, salt of the earth types.  There are several who are going to die horrible deaths at an early age, and there are several who will make good trustees for a warden.  The Bell curve is a horrible thing, but it applies to people of all ages.  Life is tough.

As is also the tradition, I then repaired to the local IHOP and drank coffee with the deputy who provides security for the night shift.  We told lies, swapped rumors and generally watched the crowd eating pancakes.  PawPaw is home now and will soon climb into the sheets.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

The Woodworth Range

Last weekend, some of the family wanted to do some shooting, so I checked the calendar of the Woodworth Shooting Range and saw that it was reserved for the normal 3rd Saturday muzzleloader shoot.  This shoot has been happening for years. 

The local muzzleloading club reserves the range every 3rd Saturday morning, and normal, taxpaying recreational shooters are not welcome unless they want to burn charcoal.  They have all kids of weird rules, and you have to pay dues to be in the club, and all this takes place at a shooting range that is built and maintained by tax dollars, especially Pittman Robertson money.  Dollars that I pay so that the range might be available for my use, and the rest of the shooting public.

So, this morning I loaded my gear to go do a little recreational shooting.  I drove out to the range and got there at about 8:30, only to be told that the range was closed.  Closed to let some other club use the range.  A kids group had come up from the New Orleans area to shoot.

Well, hell.  I support kids groups and hunter education, but this is the second Saturday in a row when the range has been closed.  I came home and looked on the calendar and I see that the range will be closed again in May, on the 17th, 18th, 19th, and 20th for the state muzzleloader shoot.  They get the whole range for four whole days.  A public range, built and maintained with public money.

I have once again written a nasty-gram to the state offices, specifically, a fellow named John Sturgis.  He runs all the LDWF ranges in Louisiana.

It's a damned stinking low-down-dog shame that a taxpaying citizen can't use a public shooting range on a Saturday morning.  It's even more of a dirty stinking shame that a public range allows private clubs to reserve those public ranges for their private use.

Friday, April 27, 2012

The Pool is Open

The pool is officially open, the birthday party was a smashing success.  We ate pulled pork sammiches, got into the beer locker, told lies and laughed at each other.

Now, everything is cleaned up and PawPaw is going to bed.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Beer Locker

Part of my responsibility as a summer-time host is to maintain the beer locker, a task that I gladly assume.  One of the benefits of maintaining the beer locker is that I get to choose what resides therein.  I stock it to suit my tastes.  If anyone doesn't like my particular taste in beer, they're free to tote their own ice chest over here, no hard feelings.

On the way home this afternoon I picked up some fresh beer.  One six pack each of Sam Adams Boston Lager, Sam Adams Cherry Wheat, Sam Adams Summer Ale, and Sam Adams Light.  Accompanied by a case of Coors Light.  Plus, kids drinks on the lower shelf.  Grape, Lemon-Lime and Root Beer soda.

That should be sufficient for the pool opening tomorrow night.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Desert One Debacle

If you were alive in 1980, you probably remember the Iran Hostage Crisis.  You probably also remember the Desert One debacle, where an Army officer named Charlie Beckwith tried to rescue the hostages and failed through a debilitating combination of bad luck, equipment malfunction, and accidents on the landing zone.  All the demons of combat combined to attrite Beckworth's force before he had gotten past the first rally point.  Everything that could go wrong, went wrong.  Desert sandstorms, busloads of Iranian tourists showing up at his rally point, collisions between aircraft, it all conspired to defeat the mission before it ever got to the objective.

The failure of the mission had huge repercussions, both politically and militarily.  Charlie Beckwith never made flag grade, Delta Force became the premier Special Forces unit in the US Army, and Jimmy Carter was defeated in his presidential re-election, going down in history as probably the worst president ever in American politics.

When we went back to the desert in 1990, there was none of the bullshit that Beckwith contended with.  The lessons of Desert One were learned very, very well.  Go to the link above and refresh your memory if you're my age.  If you're not, go to the link anyway.  It tells the story of a good officer and a piss-poor President.

Obam's Over-Reach

I see where the Obama administration is proposing rules that would prevent kids helping out on the family farm.  Seriously. 
The Department of Labor is poised to put the finishing touches on a rule that would apply child-labor laws to children working on family farms, prohibiting them from performing a list of jobs on their own families’ land.
Under the rules, children under 18 could no longer work “in the storing, marketing and transporting of farm product raw materials.”
When I had a hobby farm, raising kids in the country, part of the daily routine saw the kids helping feed cattle, sorting feed, stacking hay, doing all manner of things that farm kids have been doing since the beginning of human civilization.  If you live on a farm, you work on that farm.  It helps the family and fosters a sense of shared prosperity.  If working kids had been against the law, I would still be serving time in Angola. 

The Department of Labor is so out of touch with the American experience that they don't understand the family farm.  All the more reason to vote these bastards out of office.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Pool

This weekend is the traditional opening of our family pool.  Generally, we open it in the last weekend of April, coinciding with a grandson's birthday.  When the weather is warm and the grandkids are pestering us, we simply ask if Quinton has had his birthday yet?  No?  That's when the pool opens.  On Quinton's birthday.

Quinton's birthday is this weekend and the grandkids know that we're going to open the swimming pool.  However, the weather is decidedly cooler than average and the water temps have not come to the point where I'd be happy in the pool.  The grandkids are going in, though.  I'd have a mutiny on my hand otherwise.

Maintenance for the opening proceeds apace and I'm fairly happy with the results.  It looks like it's ready for swimmers and we can only hope that hypothermia isn't a problem.

The water is clear, the algae has been beat back, the filters are clean, the pH is in the normal range.  The pool will open on Friday afternoon as soon as the grandkids arrive for the party.  PawPaw, of course, will demure, but he'll have a big tub of pulled pork ready for the event, along with lots of chips and buns.  Soda for those who are under 18, and more adult beverages for those adults who wish to participate.

We Win! USA! USA!

It looks like we've won the War on Terror.  According to an administration official:
"The war on terror is over," a senior official in the State Department tells the National Journal. "Now that we have killed most of al Qaida, now that people have come to see legitimate means of expression, people who once might have gone into al Qaida see an opportunity for a legitimate Islamism."
Really?  I guess that we won. Cool.  I wonder if the Islamists know that we won?  I doubt it, I haven't seen anyone surrendering publicly, anyone signing surrender documents.  That's the problem with wars these days, you never know if they're really over.

Still, if the State Department says that the GWOT is over, I guess that we can disband Homeland Security and send all those TSA retards into the unemployment lines.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Feds Raid Flea Market

Yep, that's what Instapundit is reporting, via a link to the Baltimore Sun
Vendors at the Patapsco Flea Market have a history of allegedly selling counterfeit and pirated merchandise, according to an affidavit, which outlined the latest accusation that resulted in a raid Sunday by federal Homeland Security Investigations special agents.

Capping a 2 1/2-year-long investigation into counterfeit apparel and accessories as well as pirated DVDs and musical recordings, federal investigators confiscated numerous items being sold there.
Insty closes with a worthy observation, one I've been pushing for awhile.  If Homeland Security is concerned with counterfeit merchandise, we don't have a terrorist problem.
Abolish the Department of Homeland Security. If they’ve got time for this crap, we don’t have a terrorist problem anymore.
Amen, brother.  Homeland Security is long overdue for a wing-clipping.

CNN: Secret Service needs more women.

That's the headline, anyway, but we'll lead with a blockquote. 
(CNN) – Two members of Congress on Sunday questioned the gender makeup of the Secret Service, speculating whether the recent scandal in Colombia could have been avoided if the agency had more women on its payroll.
“I can't help but wonder if there'd been more women as part of that detail, if this ever would have happened,” Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine said on ABC’s “This Week.”
That makes me wonder what Senator Collins thinks that the women agents might have done?  Or to what purpose they might be productive?  Is Senator Collins suggesting that the women might have stood-in for the prostitutes? Or that the male agents might have moderated their conduct?

I don't have a problem with female cops, and I certainly never had a problem with female soldiers, but I know from long experience that when you put red-blooded Americans into a foreign environment, the horn-dog is going to come out of some of them.  Folks who would never have had an affair in their hometown are known ot let the standards slip when they're away from home.  The old saw about "what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas" has a certain basis in fact.  The old soldiers lament about "TDY rules apply.  Don't talk about it when you get home." has another basis in human behavior .  And, from my experience, it's not limited to the men. 

I could tell you stories about a Reserve field hospital full of nurses (about 200 females) that were deployed during Desert Storm, and found themselves far from home without the normal comforts or influence of children and husbands.  Let's just say that some of them found the steadying influence of their hometowns to be less exciting than the foreign lands that were filled with wholesome American soldiers.  I'm sure that when they all went home, they settled back into their lives with their families and told war stories.  Not all the war stories, but stories nonetheless.

Violating your marriage vows is a sin that will place your soul in mortal danger.  Violating the regulations of the Army, or the Secret Service is a sin that will place your career in mortal danger.  Endangering the President is a horrible thing to have on your record. 

But I'm not sure how the Senator thinks that female agents would have mitigated the damage.

The War on (Some) Drugs

The Wall Street Journal highlights an article today on the Drug War, what's working, what's not, and how we might be able to fix it. 
"For every complex problem," H.L. Mencken wrote, "there is an answer that is clear, simple and wrong."
That is especially true of drug abuse and addiction. Indeed, the problem is so complex that it has produced not just one clear, simple, wrong solution but two: the "drug war" (prohibition plus massive, undifferentiated enforcement) and proposals for wholesale drug legalization.
Very true, but I'm not sure what will work and what will not work.  The libertarian in me says that prohibition is not working, the cop in me says that drug use impacts society far beyond what appears to be a victimless crime, the citizen in me says that we've got too many laws of all kinds.  It's a complex problem and Mencken is right, the answer that is clear and simple is also wrong.

This is a national conversation that we should have.  More particularly, this a national conversation that the states should have.  Let the states work their drug laws to their advantage and let's see as a nation what works.  We've got fifty laboratories and one of them is bound to get it right.  Let's get the Feds out of the drug business except for the most egregious cases of smuggling and let the states decide how best to handle the problem.

Then, let's see who has the best ideas.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

New Dr. in the Family

Congratulations to my nephew, Adam Roberts, who last week defended his dissertation, entitled "Time Domain Spectroscopy of Graphene".  I have no idea what the hell that is, but if Adam knows, that's all that's important.  I'm sure that he can explain it to me in layman's terms.  I'm told that he got "thumbs up" from the dissertation committee on his presentation.

Congratulations, Adam!  I'll see you this summer at the family vacation.

Sunday Dawg - Bonus edition

A nice fudge-cycle is a wholesome cooling treat on a Sunday afternoon.

At least, that's what the dog thinks.  They tell me that chocolate isn't good for a dog, but he seemed to be enjoying the cooling treat.

New Browning A5

Well, Lookee Here!  Browning has resurrected the A5, the old familar humpback shotgun that John Browing himself invented.

From reading the article in the Rifleman, it appears that Browning is after the Benelli fans.  This is an inertia repeater, takes 2 3/4 or 3" shells and has a lot of neat features.  It's available in the standard Browning glossy finish or the synthetic pictured above.  It can also be bought in camo.

No, this ain't your grandad's A5, it's a thorougly modern version, and I haven't seen anything yet to lead me to believe that it's offered in anything but 12 gauge.  Still, it's a cool-looking shotgun, immediately recognized by millions of shotgunners worldwide.

At an MSRP of between 1300-1500 USD, it ain't for everyone, but it might pique my interest if I didn't already have a bunch of shotguns.

Sunday Morning Dawg

It's been a good week to be a dog.  Lots of grandkids over at varying times.  Grandkids eat lots of treats, and when a grandkid opens a bag of chips, or a box of cookies, it sounds just exactly like a bag of doggy treats.

It's time to lick the lips and see what the grandkids are eating.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Shooting with Misty

My daughter-in-law, Misty, said that she'd like to try a little rifle shooting, so we went this morning to let her explore shoulder-fired weapons.  She likes her pistols, but she wanted to try other types.

We began with rimfire, which is a good place to start new rifle shooters.  She's no stranger to recoil, but I believe that the lack of recoil surprised her.  Below, she's shooting her husband's Henry lever rifle.

Next, we moved up the chain to the centerfire calibers.  I happen to have a Handi-Rifle Ultra in .223, which is a good place to start.

Then, when she was comfortable with that level of recoil, we moved up to the Savage bolt in .243.  She was able to easily ring the 100 yard gong with that rifle.

After that, she wanted to do a little pistol work, so we brought the target in and let her work with her pistols.  I didn't take many pictures of her pistol work, but I did drag out the Super Blackhawk and ask her if she'd like to try it.  I loaded it with some .44 Special, Skeeter loads, and let her have a whirl.  I apologize for this photo being a little blurred, but I caught her in recoil.

She later told me that the Blackhawk was her favorite shot of the day.  She finished the cylinder and claimed to have enjoyed it.  I know that I enjoyed it.  All of it.  It's really fun to shoot with family on a Saturday morning.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Friday Afternoon

I'm off work with nothing pending at the school-house, there are no grandkids scheduled to spend the night, and Milady's calendar is clear.

 I think we're liable to slip off and have a good time. Without grandkids. Without adult supervision.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

It's a Dog Eat Dog World

Everyone is having a lot of fun with the dog stories. Both the Romney camp and the Obama camp are enthralled. Patterico joins in with a couple of posts:
So a while back, Mitt Romney put the family dog in a crate on the roof of his car and went on a family vacation.

So a while back, Barack Obama ate a dog.
This one on Condi Rice for VEEP.
I don’t know. Her positions on a lot of issues are unknown to me. There is one thing I know I don’t like . . . I don’t like the suggestions that she voted for Obama.

But at least she never ate a dog.
It gives a whole new meaning to this old song from Patti Page:

Or, we could take a lesson from the movie The Patriot

Either way, I'm having a lot of fun with this. The Dawg, however, is not at all amused.

He doesn't like all this talk about eating dogs.

Food Stamp Fraud

Food stamp fraud made Instapundit today, via a link to Twitchy. It's old news. Food stamp fraud has been around for as long as there have been food stamps, now EBT cards. What is not news is that the bureaucracy that issues benefits seems powerless to stop food stamp fraud.

When food stamps actually came in a coupon book, they were selling regularly on the street for half price; $50.00 cash would get you $100.00 in stamps. Nowadays they come on the EBT card, and there are ways around that too. Just recently, Milady was at the grocers when she was approached by another shopper, who offered to buy the food in our buggy using her EBT card, then settle up for cash outside the store. Milady refused and reported the woman to the manager. I don't know if the police were actually called, but stopping it is easy. Easy as pie.

Once arrested for fraud, all benefits should end. Immediately. Forever. Due process shouldn't come into it at all. Due process is not required to issue benefits and should not be required to cancel them. Just do it. All benefits. Food stamps, AFDC, housing, everything. Make the loss of benefits immediate and permanent for all members of the household. Oh, and if you move in with Momma, her benefits end too. Your live-in boyfriend is drawing unemployment? That's gone too.

There is simply no reason that the American taxpayer should have to put up with fraud. The culture is such that fraud is seen as normal, smart, and beneficial. That sort of culture has no place in our society.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

DC Govt Workers Draw Unemployment Benefits

It looks like the workers for the city of Washington DC have been drawing unemployment benefits while working for the city.
Attorney General Irvin B. Nathan said his office will begin filing civil suits “in the next few weeks” to recover the city’s money. District officials have estimated that the city had paid as much as $800,000 in jobless benefits to working city employees since 2009.
And, the probe isn't over.
Lisa Mallory, director of Department of Employment Services, said that since February’s suspensions, the agency had discovered improper payments to other current employees. “We found another batch of 100,” she said.
Of course, the city is suing to recover the benefits, but as I recall most fraud laws, drawing unemployment benefits while working is fraud, a felony. Why aren't those employees being arrested and charged?

And, would anyone like to guess the party affiliation of the Mayor? It isn't mentioned anywhere in the article, so I assume he's not a Republican.


The girls played their last home game tonight, in the first round of the playoffs. They lost, so their season is over. The boys play one more game, an away game, and I don't have to worry about those guys getting into the playoffs. Not with a 2-20 record. Ain't happening. It's been a tough year for the baseball team.

The end of ball season means that the school year is winding down. All that's left is the theater season and the Prom, and both of those will be over next weekend. After that, graduation and PawPaw will be just about ready to take off for the summer.

The school year is winding down and I'm glad to see it go.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Test of Fire

There's a video out by an organization, Catholics Called to Witness. It calls all Catholics of faith to vote to preserve the faith. I was a practicing Catholic for 25 years and although I worship with the Methodists today, I still share many of the values of the Roman Catholic church.

I stand with the Catholics.

Another Quiz

At the urging of the Barn Army, I took a Pew Research Quiz. Aced it.

Only 8% of the public knows this stuff? This is basically entry-level political stuff. Third graders should know this.

Monday Madness

It began as a Monday and maintained that level all day. Damn Lawyers, Damn Insurance Companies, Damn Idiots of all Stripes.

But, I come home and see two things that give me hope.


And roses.

That makes it all better. My grandkids are healthy and my roses are blooming. The rest is simply a distraction.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Sunday Musings

As I was sitting in the sermon this morning, my mind wandered, as it is apt to do. The pastor was talking about Thomas, the doubting disciple, and I was thinking about rifles. Particularly, the .250 Savage. It was designed by Charlie Newton and standardized by Savage Arms, most notably in their Model 99 lever action rifle.

The .250 Savage, also known as the .250-3000 was one of the first factory cartridges to break the 3000 fps barrier. It's been eclipsed by the other quarter-bores, most notably its older brother the .25-06. The .250 Savage is neither fish nor fowl, not a varmint cartridge and not really a big game cartridge. Yeah, it'll make 3000 fps with the little 87 grain pills, but it doesn't carry well with the bigger bullets. It can push a 117 grain bullet to between 2500-2600 fps, which isn't screaming, it's only adequate for a number of tasks. The .25-06 will push that same 117 grain bullet faster and if you want screaming speed, the .257 Weatherby will make it go even faster. My Lee manual puts the .25-06 with the 117 grain bullet at the 2900 fps range and that's what I'm seeing with my Ruger 77.

There's not much to recommend the .250 Savage except that it's built in light rifles, has light recoil, and is easy to shoot. It's getting harder to find factory rifles chambered in the little cartridge, but Savage makes two. A stainless steel synthetic stocked rifle called the Model 16 FHSS and a wood stocked version they call the Model 14 American Classic.

I've got a .25-06 leaning in the corner and I've got other rifles, most notably my go-to rifle, the .30-06. The .250 Savage is about as useless to me as it can be. Still, that little cartridge jumped into my mind this morning when the preacher was talking about Doubting Thomas. There's got to be a lesson there, but I'll have to pray over it.

Sunday Morning Dawg

This week, we re-visit an old favorite, the dog looking under the fence.

Yeah, that's a brand new picture, I took it Saturday afternoon late. Seeing him do that always cracks me up.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

LIfe is Good

I spent the morning working at the church, doing things that only get done once a year or so. The menfolk worked outside, pressure washing, cleaning gutters and downspouts, trimming hedges and raking, trimming, and hauling-off. The ladies worked inside, and painted the front doors.

About noon, we locked everything and left. Milady and I went to the auction, visited with friends, the went to eat with them at a catfish house. Went to the grocers, PawPaw is cooking burgers for the assembled crowd for lunch tomorrow. Got home and remembered that I haven't yet posted the Sunday Dawg. Coaxed the pup into posing. In just a few more minutes, PawPaw is going to kick off his shoes and get in the easy chair.

It's been a very good day filled with family and friends.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Over 20 Years

My son linked to an Officer Memorial page and I went over there to find an old friend, coworker, soldier.

Gerald Wayne Moberly.
Officer Gerald Moberly was shot and killed as he and an officer from the Mansfield Police Department attempted to serve an arrest warrant on a parolee. The officers located the man and Officer Moberly escorted him to his room to obtain clothes before being taken to jail. The suspect grabbed a .22 caliber handgun and opened fire, striking Officer Moberly.

The man then exited the room and exchanged shots with the other police officer. Both men were wounded superficially and ran out of ammunition. The wounded officer then transported Officer Moberly to a local hospital, where he succumbed to his wounds.
What the blurb doesn't tell you is that the offender dived out a window, sparking a manhunt for a cop-killer. We found him later at a relative's house and took him into custody. He did well not to resist. He's now serving life at Angola, and in Louisiana, life means life.

Looking at the date, I realize that it's been over 20 years since Gerry stood End of Watch. I was his supervisor, but more than that, Gerry was a good friend.

Women Driving Gun Sales

This article, over at KMOX St.Louis, says that women are becoming a driving factor in gun sales.
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) – As St. Louis prepares to welcome tens of thousands of gun enthusiasts, you might be surprised who the NRA says is their largest growing demographic. It’s women. And a recent survey by the National Shooting Sports Foundation found 61 percent of retailers saw an increase of female customers from 2009 to 2010.
Our experience mirrors that trend. Since the ladies took their concealed class on March 17th, we've purchased several firearms just for the ladies. My second son reports that we've created a monster. His wife now owns four handguns, a larger collection than he has. And, she's interested in shooting anything she can get her hands on. She recently had a chance to fire a 1911 in .45 ACP and claims that she likes that platform as well. Good for her.

I know we've seen an increase in female gun buying. That's a good thing. A very good thing.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Dershowitz on Zimmerman

Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz says that he's read the affadavit and that it will result in an acquital, if it ever makes it to trial. "It’s irresponsible and unethical. . . . This affidavit doesn’t even make it to probable cause. Everything in this affidavit is consistent with a defense of self-defense. . . .A good judge will throw this out."

Hat tip: Instapundit.

Yep, It's the Shield

I'm told that Smith and Wesson is going to make them in 9mm and .40SW.

They've got Jerry Miculek running the darned thing, of course it looks good. Jerry could make a flintlock look good. After the hype dies down, we'll see how it stands up to the intertubes.

In that regard, my buddy David has a little pistol by Taurus, the Taurus Slim in 9mm and David really likes that little pistol. David is a retired State Police lieutenant, so he's been around guns his whole life and when he and I were talking about Glocks and Smiths this weekend, he pulled out the Slim and told me that the more he carries the little gun, the more he likes it. It goes bang every time he pulls the trigger, it's lightweight and slim, and it's stainless steel. He showed me that you can double-strike a reluctant primer and David said that he gave about $300.00 for his copy.

I'm not going to rush out and buy a SW Shield based on the hype, but the market is filling up with single-stack 9mm concealment pieces. Can Glock be far behind?

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The New Smith

Smith and Wesson has been teasing us, telling us that they're going to make a big announcement on April 12th. The Truth About Guns tells us that it's going to be a small single-stack 9mm, called the M&P Shield.

If so, Smith & Wesson joins Ruger, Beretta, Kel-Tec, and Walther with such a handgun.

Can Glock be far behind?

Zo on Trayvon

I don't know if all of my readers watch ZoNation, but this guy is magnificent. I'd like to buy him a beer. Go watch him not weigh in on the Trayvon Martin debacle. Yeah, it's over seven minutes, but it's worth the time you spend.

I understand that Zimmerman has dropped off the grid. I guess so. They've got bounties out for him.

Wednesday Whoo-Hoo!

The boy got out of the hospital yesterday and has entered the recovery stage. It looks like he's going to be okay, after everything knits.

I stopped at the meat market on the way home and talked to the lady there. I told her that I loved her choice ribeyes, but those things average a pound each and that's just too damned much meat for me and Milady if I get us each a steak. She agreed that those are big ol' ribeyes, but she asked if I had tried the filet? No, I have not. I had the butcher cut me a couple of one inch filets, and they averaged just over eight ounces. That ought to be perfect. We've got potatoes and corn-on-the-cob, so I believe we're set for supper. The filets are in the fridge soaking up seasoning and we'll fire the grill when Milady gets home.

It's good when things get back to normal.

Monday, April 09, 2012

Holder's Ballot offered to White Guy

James O'Keefe and Project Veritas are at it again, this time walking into a polling place in Washington DC and getting permission to vote as Eric Holder.

O'Keefe was careful to not break any laws, but the video shows how easy it is to commit voter fraud without ID. The DOJ is in full spin, saying that the incidents are manufactured. That's true, but notice how easy it is to manufacture such evidence when no ID is required.
But the DOJ isn’t interested in the real point of the video. They know full well that voter fraud is simple when nobody has to show identification. They just don’t care, since they’re happy to watch political allies take advantage of the loopholes. Instead of targeting O’Keefe and Project Veritas for showing the American public the dangers of the current voter identification system, the Department of Justice and Holder are apparently interested only in preserving the absence of voter ID, no matter how many fraudulent ballots are actually cast.
It's interesting that you have to show ID to get into the Justice Department, but you don't have to show ID when casting a ballot.

Louisiana has had a voter ID law for years, and I'm still mystified why the DOJ hasn't challenged it. It's absolutely puts no burden on voting. If you drive to the polls, you need your driver's license anyway. The Democrats don't want it because it is so easy to commit fraud at the polling places. Holder's objection is intellectually lazy and insulting to thinking Americans.

Life Intrudes.

An horrific automobile accident involving family, and a grandson in the hospital. I've been a little busy the past twenty-four hours talking to family, getting updates, trying to make sense of what happened and getting advice from associates. Grandson moved today from ICU to a ward room and we're hesitantly optimistic that the worst is over. There is a better than average chance that he'll get out of the hospital tomorrow and that he can go home and begin the recovery phase. He's getting great care and that's what's important. The rest is just sheet metal. They're making new cars every day.

PawPaw's been busy being a PawPaw, taking care of family and helping things sort themselves out.

It's funny how life can go from the reloading bench to the emergency room in the space of an hour. I think I'll go get that brass out of the tumbler.

Sunday, April 08, 2012

The Mud Chimney

There is a legend in Cajun Country about the crawfish mud chimney. When the Acadiens were expelled from Acadie and traveled south to find home and refuge, the lobsters they fished followed them. Those big lobsters got tired and hungry on the voyage and shrank in size till they were about four inches long. When the Acadiens settled in Louisiana and became Cajuns, those lobsters set up homes and became known as crawfish. Those crawfish tried to emulate the Cajuns, and when the people built their homes and their mud chimneys, the crawfish built chimneys, but got tired, crawled into the little chimney and slept.

Today, walking the dog, I spotted a crawfish chimney in the ditch in my yard. Because I've got a lot of Cajun in me, I saluted the little mud chimney and left it alone. Some poor crawfish has taken residence in my ditch and that's okay with me. I'll leave him alone as long as he wants to stay.

That's a crawfish mud chimney, in the grass of my ditch. It's about five inches tall and tells me that a crawfish has buried bimself in the mud. It's probably part of his life cycle, and I'm sure I could Google the science, but the legend is good enough for me.

One more picture, from another perspective.

Ain't that something?

Dwight's Conversion

Back in the old days of the intertubes, there was a forum, Kim duToit's Nation of Riflemen and a bunch of us hung out over there. One of the posters was a guy named Dwight, and yesterday I checked my email and found that he's looking for capital for a new project, a conversion that turns a 1911 .45 ACP into a .22 LR with only two parts. The barrel and the magazine.

He's got a You Tube video and it looks like it works. Looks like it works good.

That's the damndest little kit I've ever seen and if he could manufacture them, he'd make a killing. If I were Dwight,I'd contact someone like Choate Machine & Tools and see if they'd be interested in working out an agreement. You regular readers look at the video and then, in comments, give me some ideas that I can give to Dwight.

Sunday Morning Dawg

The dog loved feral water, we've established that fact in this series. With all the rain we've had lately, there is no shortage of mudholes to drink from, and we get this picture from one of our afternoon explorations.

Notice the culvert at the top of the mudhole. Yeah, that's the culvert that runs under my driveway. Notice the brownish-green cast that the water shows in the picture. Lots of good minerals, along with runoff from God-knows-what. It's the best water a dog can have. Let's not forget that he's got a clean water bowl near his bed, and another on the back deck. That's not good enough for this dawg. It's got to be feral for taste!

Saturday, April 07, 2012

Two Bullets

This morning I went to the range to play with a couple of rifles. My Ruger 77 in .25-06 and my Model 10 in .308. Working up loads for the Ruger, I loaded two different bullets with the same powder charge. The 117 grain Hornady SST and the 117 Sierra Gameking. I loaded them both with Reloder 19 and Reloder 22 powder.

So, I Loaded the same brass with the same primer and powder and seated two different bullets. The first load was 46.0 grains of Reloder 19, half seated with the Hornady, half seated with the Sierra.

Then I loaded another series with the same brass and primer, but used 50.0 grains of Reloder 22. Half seated with the Hornady and half seated with the Sierra.

Then I pushed them over the chronograph. For reasons I haven't divined yet, the Hornady bullets flew faster than the Sierra with both powders.

117 Hornady, 46.0 RL19, 2728 fps
117 Sierra, 46.0 RL19, 2667 fps
117 Hornady, 50.0 RL22, 2870 fps
117 Sierra, 50.0 RL22, 2797 fps.

Who'd have thought that changing the bullet would change the velocity by that amount? Not the weight of the bullet, but the brand? That's the beauty of this hobby; you learn something new every time you go out, and just about the time you think you know what you're doing, you find something new that makes you scratch your head.

Friday, April 06, 2012

Defacto Registration

From Instapundit, we get a link to this little bit of nonsense.
“Anchorage gun shops are being visited by BATFE agents that are requesting the shops 4473 forms as far back as 2007. They claim they want to make copies of the “book”. This is de facto registration, against the law, and BATFE knows it. Please inform everyone you know about this and notify any gun dealers you know that they don’t have to comply. Contact your congressman and senators and demand a full investigation. Don Young and our Senators have been informed about what is happening. Congressman Young is acutely interested but our senators seem to be indifferent. You can go to their websites to find their email forms.” Make the jump for contact details. (bolding mine)
BATFE knows that it's forbidden for them to make a registry. Period. This is the same BATFE that instituted the Fast and Furious program that ran guns into Mexico. As far as I'm concerned it's another rogue agency that needs its wings clipped; a full defunding and being abolished should send the message that we won't sit still for a government agency running roughshod over Americans.

Good Friday

I got up early this morning and finished manicuring the lawn for the Easter weekend. I've got two cases of catfish filets thawing in a cooler and in another hour or so I'll go outside and finish trimming them and slicing them into manageable portions. Then load the truck with my cooking gear. We'll eat fried fish and all the fixin's at 6:00 sharp, then a small worship service.

This is my penance for the Lenten season. I tell the ladies at the church that this is the only time of the year when I fry fish without a beer in my hand. I will have an ice chest full of diet Dr. Pepper for liquid refreshment.

I've got to go get propane, then double-check my list.

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Yet Another Reason

No less a personage than Glenn Reynolds gives a reason why the Department of Homeland Security should be abolished. In an article he links to, we find:
Our homeland will not be secure by these rascals. They played agency games, abused the people they are to serve, and violated their oaths to support the Constitution.”
Don't get me wrong, I love cops. I've been a cop for thirty years and I think that law enforcement is a high calling, like nursing and teaching. I think that law enforcement has forgotten that our highest obligation is to serve the people, to help people who need our help. From what I've seen of Homeland Security, they've certainly forgotten that imperative, if in fact they ever learned it.


We're a redneck crew, we really are. With just enough Cajun thrown in to appreciate things like jambalaya and gumbo. Of course, Cajuns like 4-wheelers too. They're very important for traversing the swamps, sloughs and hill country around here. The lead picture this morning from my daughter-in-law's blog is my second son with two of the grandkids, all astride a 4-wheeler.

That's second son with his boy in front and a nephew in back. Just another redneck afternoon. Good stuff!

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Momma's Tiller

My Mom has been a gardener all her life and many years ago she and Dad bought a tiller. A simple Sears tiller. There is no telling how many acres of ground that thing has tilled over the years they've had it. Dad was always a stickler for maintenance and the tiller was just one of the many machines he maintained over the years.

A couple of weeks ago, one of the ladies at the church was asking how she could borrow a tiller, and I mentioned that Momma had one. She talked to Momma and they decided that it might not start, as we lost Daddy five years ago and can't remember the last time it was started. I told her I'd look into it.

I went to Momma's house this morning, drained the old gasoline from the tank and replaced it with fresh gas. Tried to crank it. No-Go. Piddled with it for a little while, then loaded it in the truck to bring home. I could get it to fire when I put gas in the breather, but it wouldn't pick up gas from the tank. I called my mechanic son, and we agreed that I should clean the carburetor.

Before I embarked on that pain-in-the-butt task, I decided to try an old trick. The new gas had been in the tank for several hours, and had been sloshing around in the back of the truck. I squirted a little WD-40 into the breather, pulled on the cord and it started right up. I shut it down, cranked it again. No problem, it cranked right up. Did that a half-dozen times and every time it starts on the first pull.

Whoo-Hoo. I love it when a plan comes together. Now, the church can have rejuvenated flower beds.

No GM or Chrysler in the bunch

Don Surber takes a look at a survey and notices what people are not driving.

1. Honda Civic Hybrid
2. Volvo C30
3. Nissan Leaf
4. Acura TSX Wagon
5. Ford Fiesta Sedan

1. Ford Mustang Convertible
2. Audi A8
3. Mercedes GL
4. Ford Expedition
5. Ford F-150

Damn! Ford comes in with four of ten. And, you'll notice that there's not a GM or Chrysler in the bunch.

Back when I was in the cattle business I'd do un-scientific surveys of what people drove, simply by watching what was in the field or driveways of the country folk. In town, lots of Chevy Silverados and Dodge Rams, but once you left the city and ventured into the country, it was Ford by a 3-1 margin. When a guy or gal depended on a truck every day to haul trailers, carry loads, start every time and get them home for supper, the working-folk chose Ford, almost every time.

Still, it surprises me that in this top-ten list there aren't any bailout companies. I guess that accepting government largess has consequences.

Impeach the Justices

The liberals assault on the Supreme Court continues, today as seen in this article by David Row.
The problem with the current court is not merely that there is a good chance it will strike down a clearly constitutional law. The problem is that this decision would be the latest salvo in what seems to be a sustained effort on the part of the Roberts Court to return the country to the Gilded Age.
No, Mr. Row, the problem is that an increasing majority of the American people see the Affordable Healthcare and Patient Protection Act as an overreaching violation in direct violation of the Constitution. We don't agree that it is clearly constitutional, indeed, we maintain that it is plainly unconstitutional.

Further, many of us maintain that mush of what passes for the legislation since FDR is plainly unconstitutional, and that Justice Owen Robert got it wrong when he caved to Roosevelt. President Obama is using some of the same tactics as FDR in trying to intimidate the judiciary, and that's just wrong. We don't live in a democracy; we live in a Republic (if we can keep it) and the job of the Supreme Court is to rule on those issues that most affect the Constitution. Their job is to moderate the national conversation and to make sure that what we're doing is consistent with the founding principles of this nation and the mores of the people.

Supreme Court Justices have long been controversial. I remember, as a child, seeing Impeach Earl Warren billboards in the segregationist Deep South where I was raised. I might remind my Democrat friends that most of the deep seated animosity against the Court in those days came from the Democratic Party as well. They were wrong then, and they're wrong now. At least in those days they had the good sense to wait until the Court had ruled before calling for impeachment.

The Obamacare suit proceeds apace. It's been submitted and a divided nation awaits the outcome of the nine Justices. Let's wait until they rule before we begin a verbal assault on them. I'm sure that however they decide, half of us will think that they are wrong.

Hat tip: Instapundit.

Anti-Lock Brakes

My buddy David sends me this one. If you drive a car these days, you probably have anti-lock brakes. However, lots of folks don't understand how they work and this graphic is probably a good explanation for the non-mechanically inclined.

That'll do, dog, that'll do.

March Madness - The Final Four

The Final Four of Deer rifles is up, and as in all brackets we've got some weirdness coming in to the championship.

The Winchester Model 70 is paired against the Savage 111. I'm a Savage guy and have been since 2002 when I bought my first one. Since then I've bought a half dozen, mostly as pawn shop rifles. They're invariably accurate, easy to work on, lots of aftermarket support, and very reasonably priced. I've got a Savage on layaway right now as a gift to a grandson. There's lots to love about Savage rifles. Did I mention accurate? We've got three heavy-barreled Savages in the family, in 7mm Rem Mag, .308 Winchester, and .17 HMR. Each of the three will make bugholes at extreme yardage, depending on the caliber. They're not great looking rifles, but they're great shooting rifles.

But, they're paired against the Winchester Model 70. The Winchester Model 70 was Jack O'Conner's favorite rifle, and his writings were rife with examples of how it is truly The Rifleman's Rifle. From the early '80s till 2006, Olin manufactured them under license, and some believe that quality suffered. Nowadays, they're manufactured by FN, the great Belgian gun maker, under license at their plant in South Carolina. They're great rifles with a loyal following. Jack would have approved of the new Model 70s and they're still considered the very best. When you say Model 70, you think deer rifle and they're leading the left column of the bracket.

On the right side of the paper are two other iconic rifles. The Remington 700 and the Ruger #1. The Ruger #1 is an American original, one of the great designs built by Bill Ruger. It's a single shot falling block rifle and is still manufactured in a large variety of options and calibers. From the lightweight .223 Remington to the bone-crushing .458 Lott, and in weights from seven to nine pounds, there is a Ruger #1 for every hunter. I'll tell you plainly that the Ruger #1 is on my short list of bucket rifles and the kids will have to draw straws for it when I'm gone. Unfortunately, in this semi-final, it's paired against the Remington 700 and going from a 7-seed to the semifinals it's shown staying power, it'll probably fall to the Remington.

Last of the rifles to consider is the Remington 700. Probably the most beloved, purchased, and written-about rifle of the bunch. I've owned several and a short-action in .308 Winchester sits in my locker. It got the nod last year as my deer rifle, simply because I like the wood stock. It's light, deadly accurate, easily gunsmithed and has a huge aftermarket support. No self-respecting deer camp will be without at least one when hunters gather to stand around the fire and argue about such things. For the last 30 years, the Model 700 is the bolt rifle that everyone else competed against and the success of the Model 700 is in large part whey we have so many fine rifles on the gun shelves today. It's had enough flaws that other manufacturers thought they could compete against it, and it has had enough success that they wanted to compete against it. Nothing succeeds like success and the Remington Model 700 has been hugely successful. It's a great rifle and deserves to be in the quarter finals.

Should my predictions hold true, next week we'll see the championship between the Remington 700 and the Winchester Model 70. The Savage and the Ruger will have fallen by the wayside to two truly magnificent rifles. This week is easy to predict, but next week will be a showdown between titans.

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

They're Worried

The hearings last week at the Supreme Court have the left all in a tizzy. It seems that the arguments that they so dismissed so casually were actually taken as interesting, relevant arguments that had weight. Jeffrey Toobin weigh in, at the New Yorker, in an article dated interestingly enough April 9, 2012.
and it is—or should be—a grave and unusual step for unelected, unaccountable, life-tenured judges to overrule the work of the democratically elected branches of government.
Oooh! I see where this is going. Unelected, unaccountable, life-tenured judges. Yet this is where Toobin has it exactly wrong. The sole purpose of those unelected, life-tenured judges is to rule on the law and on the acts of Congress. That is their whole reason for being. They are supposed to be above the political fray, the original, unassailable Ivory Tower. They can make their decisions in a vacuum, and they should. The vacuum of law, but more particularly, the vacuum of the Constitution.

The whole point of enumerated powers is to set limits on the actions of Congress and the Executive. To my way of thinking, Supreme Courts in the past have strayed too far outside the paper boundaries of the Constitution, finding powers and rights that are only found by doing double-back-flips of judicial interpretation. I believe that the Commerce clause as we understand it today is a broad overreach of judicial activism.

I understand our President is bothered also by the case, and well he should be. If his landmark, signature accomplishment is tossed out, all he'll have to fall back on is a lousy economy and high gas prices.

In the meantime, it is interesting to watch the liberals worry themselves over what the Supremes might do. Were I a Republican congressman, I'd immediately propose a Constitutional amendment that all Supreme Court justices be elected to two-year terms by national election. That would take the issue of unaccountable, life-tenured judges out of the equation. I'm sure that the nation would immediately move to adopt it.

Hat tip: Hot Air.

Cool Snap

A fast moving storm rolled through central Louisiana yesterday, bringing cool temperatures and sunny skies. The temps on my back porch this morning were in the mid-60s, cool for this time of year. The air is crisp and clean, really a nice day to be outside. PawPaw is off work this morning because the schools are in spring break. I do have a ball game later this afternoon which spoils the day in that I have to put on a uniform and strap on a gunbelt.

As Easter is coming fast upon us, this is the pre-Easter cool snap. We've always got a couple of wonderfully cool days preceding Easter, a harbinger of the oppressive, sultry heat that is Louisiana in summer time. When we go back to school next week we've got just seven weeks until the end of this term. I'm still looking forward to the high-school theater season, the end of the baseball/softball season, the Prom, and graduation.

Monday, April 02, 2012

If You See Something, Say Something (TM)

Where did we get the idea that the bad guys wear hoodies? From the Obama administration, of course. Janet Neapolitano launched this video in 2010.

It looks like George Zimmerman was doing just exactly what Big Sis told him to do, until Martin found him and began to pummel him.

Bad guys wear hoodies. That's the message our President sends out.

Hat tip: Gateway Pundit.

Monday Musings

If you don't read Victor Davis Hanson, you're missing out on some of the best commentary currently available. He deconstructs the Martin-Zimmerman narrative in an article published yesterday, and provides a telling indictment concerning the current civil rights leadership.
The majority, of citizens, however, sees the current civil rights hierarchy as much of the problem with, not the solution to, the Martin tragedy. No, it is worse than that still: the Martin case has evoked renewed interest not in disproportionate rates of black crime alone, but in the civil rights leadership’s apparent lack of concern about it.
And there is the problem. The majority of citizens in the US today are unconcerned about race. The civil rights movement of the '60s has succeeded in lots of ways, the biggest of those ways is that todays Americans are largely unconcerend about race. We view the race-hustlers, ilk cut from the mold of Sharpton, Jackson, Inc. as throwbacks to an earlier age, much as George Wallace and Orval Faubus are seen as relics of a earlier age. Jackson and Sharpton's time has passed, just as the white racists time had passed. They are simply relics of a bygone time and are mere caricatures of the greats whose shoulders they stand upon.

Americans, by and large are not concerned about race. We're past that. What we are concerned about is our ability to raise our children to be healthy, happy people and to leave a legacy of freedom to successive generations. We view the Trayvon Martin case as a simple tragedy and we're watching the race-baiters and hustlers turn it into a media travesty. We know that black-on-black crime is a greater problem in post-racial America and we know that Sharpton, Jackson Inc. largely ignore the huge failures of that culture. There's no money in it, so it never enters their faux outrage.

Sharpton, Jackson, Inc are in the same category as Wallace, Faubus, Inc. and deserve the same scorn. Thinking Americans are largely unconcerned with race any more. That time is passed and giving ink and airtime to racists is something I'll never understand.

Go read Hanson's whole article. It explains it a lot better than I can.

Sunday, April 01, 2012

Palm Sunday

I just realized that this is Palm Sunday. I guess I better put on a tie.

Some conventions shouldn't be tampered with.

Sunday Morning Dawg

The dog didn't want to participate this week, so getting a photo was interesting. Luckily, the magic of a long lens and computer editing software let me capture an image that might suffice.

Taken from across the room, he's hiding under Milady's computer chair. That's his little hidey-hole and when he doesn't want to participate in any given activity, that's normally where we can find him.

He's the Hiding Under the Chair, Sunday Morning Dawg.