Sunday, September 30, 2012

On Polling

When I was in Business School, several courses were designed to teach us statistics and most of those convinced me, in market polling and customer surveys, that is is extremely difficult to get good poll results when working with the general public.  I tend to distrust poll numbers, especially in political races simply because people will lie to you.  It's one thing to measure widgets coming off an assembly line and get an idea about your production standards.  It's another thing entirely to measure people, and any pollster can inject bias into a sample, even when they're trying very, very hard to be fair.  It's part and parcel of the business.

Polls tend to favor incumbents.  I put the level of confidence of all political polls at 90%, which in my mind tells me that they're skewed 10% in one direction or another.  Nowadays the pollsters call that the margin of error.  I've studied the math behind human polling and I'm here to tell you that no pollster can tell you within 10% what the public is thinking.  Don't let them bullshit you.  If you're paying attention to the current discussion among news sites, you'll see some question about the level of confidence we should have in polls. I"m not alone here.

Last night at the family gathering, we were talking politics and I predicted that Mitt Romney would win with about 55% of the popular vote.  Lots of the folks present thought that I was wrong, but I'll persist in my prognostication, for the following reasons.

The economy sucks.  Incumbents don't do well in a bad economy.  Anyone who has bought gasoline or groceries with their dollars lately knows that those prices have risen dramatically.  The middle class, and the lower end of the middle class is hurting right now.  They're stretched pretty thin.

For those of us who pay attention to foreign policy, the President's foreign policy is in tatters, to the point where knowledgeable pundits are saying that the President actively lied about the Benghazi debacle.

At this point in the 1980 race, President Carter was ahead of Ronald Reagan by 4 points.  In late October, Carter was ahead by 7 points.  When the polls closed at the end of the voting, Reagan had won by 4 points and a huge electoral college victory.

President Obama knows this, and his campaign shows it.  The economy is struggling, foreign policy is in tatters, and the polling shows a close race.  It's not as close as many people think.  The Democrats may have a 2-point numbers advantage, but more than that number are simply going to stay home on election day.  The only poll that matters is the first Tuesday of  November, and I predict that Romney is going to win handily, with at least 5 points and a huge decisive electoral victory.

UPDATE:  As I was posting this, Instapundit linked to this report on PJ Tattler that only 9% of people today are cooperating with political pollsters.  That is a tiny number and illustrates the difficulty of conducting political polls.  I stand by my prediction.  Romney is going to win by at least five points.

East St. Louis

East St. Louis.  A little town on the banks of the Mississippi, just across from that other St. Louis, seems to be experiencing some problems.  Gang problems, juvenile problems, parenting problems.  Government problems.  The mayor of the city, whom I'm virtually certain is a Democrat, is announcing some extreme measures to gain control of his city.
**Minors are to be off the streets at ten o’clock on both weeknights and weekend nights.
**Minors on the street during school hours will be arrested on sight.
**Police will also perform I.D. checks on street corners and conduct gun searches, and Parks says he won’t hesitate to call in the National Guard if the spike in violence continues.
East St. Louis Mayor Alvin Parks announcing crackdown on youth violence “The loiterers will be arrested, not warned, but arrested. Those who are hanging out at 11th and Bond, 15th and Lynch, 38th and Waverly, wherever you happen to be, if you are loitering, you will be arrested.”
Sounds extreme, doesn't it? Yeah, I thought so too, but then we get to the most racist part of the whole order. ID cards.
“Vehicles that are moving will be stopped and searched for guns, weapons, drugs, and open alcohol and any other violations that are taking place,” Parks later told KMOX’s Mark Reardon. “People who are walking, people who are bicycling, can be stopped and searched for the same and, when it comes to state IDs, we’re going to be confirming that state IDs are in place for everyone involved.”
Wait a minute! ID Cards? But those are racist. They suppress the minority vote. And how are all those Democrats going to vote if they're locked up in the local jail? Without the ID Cards you won't even be able to walk down the street, much less pull a voting lever.

Just so you don't think that the Mayor of East St. Louis is an old Bull Conner guy, a picture would help.

I notice that he's wearing a blue suit and a red tie.  If I were the cops, I'd ask for his ID, then lock him up for wearing gang colors.  The best quote today is from the Gun Counter forum.
State ID cards are those magical objects that this mayor decrees that everyone MUST have just for the privilege of walking around ....but if certain people are asked to show these IDs for voting they transform into symbols of racist voter suppression. Or something.
Welcome to the Police State. Of course, in Illinois the Constitution hasn't been in effect for several decades.

Sunday Morning Dawg

We had a family gathering at the house last night, and the dog was getting scratching wherever he could find it.

That's my baby sister scratching the dog, and my mother to to her right.  It's good being a dog during our family feeds.

Friday, September 28, 2012

More Family Photos

I've got a grandson who looks remarkably like this photo.

Yeah, that's PawPaw hisself, taken in January 1955.

PawPaw is working a football game tonite at the high school.  It's also a full moon.  Cops and nurses know what a full moon brings.  I've got the radio on the charger, I'm hydrating, and I'm going to the lease tomorrow morning.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Old Photographs

My mother came by today with some old photos and I've scanned a couple in for the general edification of the family.

That's my grandfather, Edward L. Dezendorf Jr. and family member John James Joseph Masson, Jr. working on an old Ford.  Taken at the Kelly Street house, about 1952.  JJJ Masson is where the James comes from in our family line.

Family members should feel free to use this photo in any manner they see fit.  You can click on it to make it bigger.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Bentley Back In Racing

Bentley's coming back in racing, with what looks like one hell of a car.
That looks like a sweet ride.
The production-spec Bentley Continental GT Speed has a claimed 4.0-second 0-60 mph top speed and 205-mph top speed. Mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission, the car’s 6.0-liter W-12 engine produces 616 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque.
There's no Bentley dealership locally, so I'll never know if they'd take an eleven-year-old F150 in trade.

The Daily Mohammed

Here's one that should drive the Mohammedans crazy. Mohammed after conversion to Judaism.
I love it. Courtesy of


Out of the annals of weird politics and Louisiana campaigns, comes this heartwarming tale from Baker, LA.
A lifelong Baker resident claims she was permanently disabled after watching a YouTube video released by mayor-president candidate Mike Walker’s campaign.
She says that she's been Kiptonized by the ad, in which Mayor Kip Holden claims that crime isn't a problem.
“I saw that video on the YouTubes,” Lacey said. “And when the swirly thing came on and the watch went back and forth, I got really sleepy, like when I get the itis after eating a bunch of ribs.”
Yeah, that swirly thing has entranced her.
She tells the paper that she can't walk to work any more and she's deserving of disability.
The 48-year-old grandmother said she can no longer perform her duties as a high school cafeteria worker after viewing the ad and has since filed for full disability with the state. “I can’t do nothing anymore, baby,” Lacey explained. “I been Kipnotized. All I wanna do now is drink Budweiser and hang out with white women.”
Heh! Only in Louisiana. You can watch the campaign ad here.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Crime Scene?

It seems that there is some animosity between the media and the State Department.  CNN used portions of slain ambassador Stephens diary to show that he knew that he was in danger when he went to Bengazi.  What is truly telling is some of the wording that State Department Phillip Reines used in describing the incident.
• On material, I'll let Toria reiterate, but the answer is no. Though you might want to ask CNN if they took anything else from the crime scene that they haven't yet told anyone about.
Crime Scene? Crime Scene?  I've worked a lot of crime scenes, and I'm not even certified as a crime scene investigator, but I'm certainly competent to do so.  In a crime scene, you don't let anyone, not anyone in who is not actively engaged in protecting and preserving evidence.  So, my question to Phillipe Reines would be; "How did CNN get into the crime scene before all of the evidence was preserved?"  How is it that the State Department is so incompetent that they can't preserve a simple crime scene?

Let's forget for a moment that this wasn't a crime scene.  This was the site of a vicious act of war against the United States.  This is an act of war about which our own government has been lying for the past fourteen days.  This was not a simple protest.  The militants that successfully pressed this attack were armed with rifles, mortars and RPGs against a consulate of the United States.

So, I would ask Phillipe Reines, if this were a crime scene, why was it not preserved?  If it was not a crime scene, why are you lying about it?  The answer is stark and uncompromising.  We've got some worthless bastards running our State Department.

Hat tip to Betsy's Page.

Crybaby Mohammed

I see that the religion of the perpetually aggrieved continues to make noise about their pedophile prophet.  They were at the UN today asking that the body consider sanctions on blasphemy in light of the recent assaults on Mohammed.  Seriously.
As the U.N. General Assembly convenes this week in New York, several leaders of mostly Muslim nations are suggesting that the world body consider sanctions on blasphemy, amid widespread protests against an amateur movie that denigrates Islam’s Prophet Muhammad.
As I understand their complaint, any depiction of the Pedophile Prophet is blasphemous, so in light of their sensitivities, I offer Crybaby Mohammed.
What they have to understand is that we revile pedophiles, we revere women, and we will grind your sacred cows into hamburger. I've heard since 9/11 that the majority of Mohammedans are gracious, moderate, kind people.  In that case, it doesn't seem like a stretch for them to tell the radicals to "get over it".

Just for the record, that idiot preacher in Florida, whatsisname?  I deplore his tactics as well, but it's really time for the moderate Mohammedans to assert themselves before their religion's perpetual whining becomes a buzz-kill for everyone.

Monday, September 24, 2012

More Mohammed Cartoons

No review of Mohammed cartoons would be complete without a viewing of Kurt Westergaard's drawing of Mohammed with a bomb on his head.   Done in stark black and white, the unsmiling prophet is poised to detonate, a metaphor for his perpetually aggrieved followers.

This cartoon, more than any, dramatizes for me the Mohammadan faith.  It's stark and deadly, capable of more damage to the Prophet than to some one at a safe distance.  The lesson is simple, keep a safe distance from the Pedophile Prophet and his followers.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Sunday Morning Dawg

We've done the turkey shoot and made lots of money for our church mission fund.  The guns are oiled and put away, the church is cleaned up, all the ice chests have been emptied.  It was a great Saturday, but today we're relaxing at home.

The dog on his tiles near the fireplace, PawPaw on his recliner.  It's great to have a lazy day.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

The Turkey Shoot

We finished the Turkey Shoot at the church today, and PawPaw never picked up a camera.  I was the rangemaster today and was preoccupied with such things as the Four Rules, making sure everyone was safe, and keeping the firing line moving.  However, some of the folks took pictures.

That's my grandson with the oversized muffs about to engage the target with his mother's .410 shotgun.  His dad is kneeling beside him coaching, and PawPaw is in the top corner, making sure that everything is safe.  Of the winners in the youth division, all three were PawPaw's grandsons and I feel pretty good about that.  In  the men's division, another grandson took a prize and in the women's division, my daughter-in-law took a prize with that same shotgun in the picture above.  The big winner in the women's division was a woman who hadn't picked up a shotgun in many years.  She shot her brother's Remington 1100 in .410 and she whacked the target pretty good.  Good enough to take home first prize, a big ole donated spiral cut ham.

Some of the shotguns leaning against a pine tree.  Many of those are family guns that we used as loaners for those folks who wanted to shoot, but didn't have a shotgun.  We had a very good time today, made a bunch of money for our Mission fund, and started what will probably be an annual tradition.

And, we got to shoot shotguns on the grounds of the church.  How cool is that?

The Mohammed Cartoon

I almost forgot about another Mohammed Cartoon I saw last week.  I've seen it before, but it resonates on how completely the Islamic world treats its women.  Here we see two Islamic women with only their eyes revealed.  The Prophet is revealed with his eyes covered.  That's a telling caricature of the Muslim faith.

You'll notice that the prophet is a gray-bearded man and that the women are fresh faced young ladies.  Actually, I'm not convinced that the ladies are old enough for the prophet, who much preferred his girls before they reached puberty.  He is without a doubt the most reviled pedophile in the world.

I was busy today, advancing the Christian faith, so I didn't have a chance to look for a Koran.  I'll be at an auction later today, so hopefully someone will be selling a box of books with a rat-eared paperback copy.  I need some scrap paper to test the penetration of shotshells and a Koran should do just fine.

Polls Tied

With Mitt Romney having what some are calling his worst week yet, it turns out that the polls look like a tie.  How is that possible?  Rasmussen has the race as a complete tie and Gallup shows the President up two points in swing states.  What is going on?  It's simple.

Buyer's remorse.  Lots of folks who voted for an historical presidency are tired of having to defend the indefensible.  We've had an historic presidency, lets elect someone who knows what the hell he's doing, and that isn't Barack Obama.

I've seen predictions that predict that Romney will win with over 320 electoral votes, about the same percentage as President Obama's win over John McCain.  It's going to be a huge rejection of his policies and his administration.

We're going to beat him like a bass drum in just a few more weeks.  I'll make an additional prediction that he won't have the class to make a simple concession call.

Great Wealth

I've been privileged to know a few men of great wealth.  Small-town guys who you'd never know were wealthy.  As a general rule, they drove battered old pickup trucks and wore working-man clothes.  They got rich the old fashioned way, working hard, being shrewd in their business, and taking care of customers and employees.  They gave money away because it helped their goodwill and they had more money than they needed.  These guys turn problems into opportunities. One fellow would give land to employees, turning a working-class stiff into a more comfortable working-class stiff.  Another fellow would shower cash on an unsuspecting local charity, allowing them to do truly wonderful work.  Another guy might be in a diner for breakfast and pick up the tab for everyone in the place.  Another fellow had an employee who was basically homeless, so the guy bought a house, let the employee live in it, then sold it later when the employee got back on his feet.

When it all boils down to money, you have folks who realize that once their basic necessities are covered, and their comfort is assured, the best thing to do with money is to spread it around.  Personally.  Take care of the folks around you, do good works.  Each of the truly rich people that I have known later died after a long, prosperous life and  in the little communities where they lived they are regarded as patrons of the community for helping the little folks.  They were good people, deserving of the accolades of their neighbors and helping folks that may have never realized where the money came from for their churches, their community parks, their fund-drives.

I see that Mitt Romney has released his tax returns.  They show that for just last year along, the Romney family gave away more money than I'll probably ever earn.  He earned $13.6 million in 2011 and paid $1.9 million in taxes.  He gave away over $4 million, about a third of his income.  Additional records released show that over the past 20 years, the Romneys have paid their taxes every year, but more importantly, have given away over 13% of their income.

For me, personally, this changes everything.  Yesterday, I was not voting for Mitt Romney so much as I was voting against Barack Obama.  Now, knowing what I know, I'm voting for Mitt Romney.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Turkey Shoot

Tomorrow morning we're having a Turkey Shoot at Bethel United Methodist Church, 125 Bethel Road, Deville, LA  71328.  All funds to benefit our Mission Fund.

It's an old-style shotgun shoot, against a paper target with a small X in the center.  Closest shot to the X wins, and we've got prizes.  Donated by friends and loved ones, there are turkeys, hams, a game camera, skateboards, toys, candles, lots of things to give away.  Some of the ladies are holding a bake sale, and pulled-pork sandwiches will be sold.  There will be an old-fashioned lemonade stand, and I've heard that some folks may be selling baked goods.

The rules are simple.  Your shotgun, my shells.  Shoot at the target, the closest shot wins.  One shot for $3.00, two shots for $5.00.

The safety briefing starts promptly at 10:00 a.m. and the first round will go downrange shortly thereafter.  If you're in the neighborhood, drop by.  I'll have loaner shotguns available.

Muslim Outrage

If you've been paying attention at all, you know that the Muslims from around the world are well and truly pissed that some bozo in this country made a really laughable movie about their really laughable prophet.  I mean, c'mon.  The guy was a pedophile.  Today, in a civilized country, Mohammed would either be a politician or a death-row inmate, the two being closely aligned, especially among the followers of Islam.

But, the Muslims are burning down cinemas, killing ambassadors, rioting in the streets in at least four countries, and now this French newspaper wants to publish satirical cartoons about the pedophile prophet.  Muslim outrage is simply everywhere.

SO, Daniel Pipes at Fox comes up with an idea I like. Let's overload those pedophile followers with outrage.  Let's give them something to truly whine about.
Which prompts this question: What would happen if publishers and managers of major media outlets reached a consensus -- “Enough of this intimidation, we will publish the most famous Danish Muhammad cartoon every day, until the Islamists tire out and no longer riot”? What would happen if Korans were recurrently burned?
That's a great idea, and I'm all over it. If they want outrage, let's give them outrage.  Let's see:

That's a good one.  We could make him into a bobblehead.  I'll call him Dash Board Mohammed.

Maybe more tomorrow, I've got a lot to do this afternoon.  Big day at the Christian church tomorrow.  And remember, it's your Christian duty to piss off a Muslim every day.  Tomorrow, I'll see if I can find a Koran.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Taxes For Everyone

That seems to be the proposal of one candidate in Virginia.  Virginia Senate candidate Tim Kaine says that he would be comfortable with a proposal for a "minimum tax level for everyone".

Well, hell, Tim, so would I.  Let's get that 47% paying their fair share.  It's a great idea, and with bipartisan support, we might be able to get the deficit down to some rational level.  Like zero.
Instapundit has more thoughts, and he proposed them almost four years ago.
On a related note, I think we should rethink this business of having lots of Americans who don't pay income tax. As theTax Foundationcomments: "It is time for a serious public discussion of whether it is desirable to have so many Americans disconnected from the cost of government and what the consequences are of using the tax system as a vehicle for social policy."
Personally, I'd like to see everyone pay at least some income tax, and I'd like to see the amount of tax paid, by everyone, go up or down every year in tandem with federal spending. That would encourage fiscal discipline directly. It would also make it harder for politicians to promise everybody a free lunch, but hey -- why shouldn't they sacrifice something, too?
I concur. It sounds like an idea with broad bipartisan support. Let's get behind it.

The Renter's Tax

Yesterday when I was talking about the Coliseum, and I proposed a renter's tax, some of the commenters rightfully objected that renters do pay the property tax on a property.  Of course they do, I get it.  A property tax is eventually passed on to renters.  Y'all are missing my point entirely.

Property taxes are voted on by the general voting public, whether or not that voter owns property.  So, for renters that don't own property, those taxes are painless for them.  Sure, they wind up paying the tax as a part of their rental cost, but they don't see it.  What I'm proposing is entirely different.

When I propose a renter's tax, that would be a tax on rentals, either set at a percentage or a flat $10.00 per month rate that is added on top of the unit rental.  What used to be a $500.00 per month rent just became a $510.00 per month rent.  Even if the renter is on rental assistance, they will notice that the cost increased, and because many of them are subsidized at a set amount, the amount would probably come out of their pockets.  This would apply to all rentals, whether residential or commercial, and it would give "skin in the game" to folks who don't often worry about property taxes.

The idea could use some tweaking, but I think that it's a great untapped source of revenue, and it wouldn't hit single family dwelling owners.  We already pay enough property taxes.  Let the renters pick up the tab for some of the stuff that they want.  It would also encourage them to become property owners, which is good for America.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The Coliseum

No, not the one in Rome, we've got one in Rapides Parish, a local venue owned by the parish governing board.  It needs an upgrade, badly.  So, the local governing body (we call them Police Jury) is trying to float a tax to get the Coliseum upgraded.
Voters will decide in November whether saving the nearly 50-year-old Rapides Coliseum in Alexandria is worth the price tag. Between now and Nov. 6, stakeholders in the facility plan to do everything they can to persuade them.
The upgrades and renovation are going to cost $23 million US dollars, and the Police Jury want to float a property tax to fund the renovation.
On the Nov. 6 ballot is a $23 million bond issue, backed by a 2.5-mill property tax, to fund the renovations and upgrades. Voters also are being asked to pass a 1-mill property tax to fund coliseum operations over the next 20 years.
So, if they get what they want, we property owners will fund the operation by a 3.5 mil property tax. And there's the rub. There are lots of folks who use the Coliseum who aren't property owners. I don't know what the percentage of property-owners vs non-property-owners might be, but I'm tired of paying property taxes to fund the folks whut don't own property.

It seems to me that the property owners are funding lots of stuff in this parish that the renters don't have to fund, yet the renters get to vote on it, just like they're someone.  Let everyone pay their fair share.  For myself, I'm voting against any taxes at all on the local ballot.  If the Coliseum needs an upgrade, then let it make its own money, pay its own way.  I'm recommending that everyone vote NO against any property tax.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


Simply because I'm in the mood for a little silliness:

Working people frequently ask retired people what they do to make their days interesting.

Well, for example,  my wife and I went into town and visited a shop. When we came out, there was a cop writing out a parking ticket. We went up to him and I said,

'Come on, man, how about giving a senior citizen a break?'

He ignored us and continued writing the ticket. I called him an “a$$hole.”  He glared at me and started writing another ticket for having worn-out tires. So Kate called him a “sh*t head.”  He finished the second ticket and put it on the windshield with the first. Then he started writing more tickets.

This went on for about 20 minutes. The more we abused him, the more tickets he wrote. Just then our bus arrived, and we got on it and went home. We always look for cars with "OBAMA 2012 stickers. We try to have a little fun each day now that we're retired. It's important at our age.

Ha!  Hat tip, Curmudgeonly.


My sister has been researching our ancestry and coming up with some interesting stuff.  The latest news from my family tree deals with my 5th-great grandfather, a guy named Joseph Broussard.

Born in Nova Scotia in 1702, he fought the English  and was present for several battles in Canada, and was put in prison for his efforts.  He got out of prison in time to participate in the Great Expulsion when the British threw the Acadians out of Canada.  He eventually washed ashore in south Louisiana, settling around St. Martinville.  During his exploits against the British, he adopted the nom-de-guerre Beau Soleil.

In Louisiana he was named as a militia captain of the unit Acadians of the Atakapas.  He died in 1765, at the age of 63.  Many of his descendants still live in Louisiana.  Evidently, I count as one of the multitude.

It is important that we remember these things.

Monday, September 17, 2012

The .950 JDJ

Because I'm ready for some silliness, I give you the .950 JDJ.  The rifle itself was made by SSK Industries and the carbine version weighs 50 lbs.  Yeah, that's right.  50 lbs.

The cartridge throws a 2400 grain bullet, using 240 grains of very slow powder.  The bullet generates 25,400 ft/lbs of muzzle energy and the other end generates 277 ft/lbs of recoil energy.  Just as a metric toward a normal rifle, my.30-06 generates about 27 ft/lbs of recoil energy.  So, touching the trigger on this thing is like my -06 times ten.  Each round costs about $40.00 to produce and I bet that it could be a fine cast-bullet rifle as the muzzle velocity is only about 2100 fps.

I'll pass, thank you very much.  I can't imagine a 50 lb carbine.  If you listen to the video, current rifles in this caliber weigh over 100 lbs.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Sunday Morning Dawg

The dog and I walked out this morning to look for the newspaper and I snapped a photo for The Dawg.  I don't know how he sees anything at all.

I keep saying that I'm going to make an appointment for him to get a haircut, but I never seem to remember that during the day.  He doesn't have any trouble finding his food bowl, so it's not too bad yet.

Saturday, September 15, 2012


A little good news from the home front.  It appears that the State of Louisiana got off their collective butts, the bureaucracy is satisfied, and my daughter-in-law can now legally carry a concealed firearm in the Gret Stet.

She looks great wearing it, doesn't she?  Oh, that's right.  You can't see it.  It's concealed.


I was putting together a feeder yesterday and my grandson asked if he could help.  "Why, yeah, I'd love to have some help."

And help he did.  Reading instructions, keeping the old man straight, he even used a screwdriver.  This is what being a PawPaw is all about, teaching the grandkids.

We don't have the full leg kit on it yet, but that's an easy matter, PawPaw can probably manage that by himself.  We'll test if for a week or so before we take it to the woods and fill it with corn.  In the bottom of the box was a reflective sticker and he asked if he could have it.  Sure, no problem.

Looks like he put it on his Green Machine.  Heh!

Cry Havoc!

It seems that some folks are in an uproar because the man thought to be behind that Muzzie film was interviewed by authorities last night.  While I would normally be outraged about First Amendment concerns, it seems that there's more to this story than there appears.
Nakoula pleaded no contest in 2010 to federal bank fraud charges in California and was ordered to pay more than $790,000 in restitution. He was also sentenced to 21 months in federal prison and was ordered not to use computers or the Internet for five years without approval from his probation officer.
So, the guy they interviewed last night is a convicted felon, currently on probation supervision. Further reading reveals that his original offense was that when prosecution began, he had stolen the identities of his relatives and had over 600 fraudulent credit accounts. One of the conditions of probation was that he not use a computer for anything but work.

I was a probation officer for 20 years.  If one of my caseload caused this much bullshit, you betcha I'd be interviewing him.  I'd also be fine-combing his probation conditions to look for violations.  If the court says no computers, then it's the probation officer's job to enforce that condition.

I recall a kid back in the early '90s who was hacking into other folks computers and causing a lot of grief and distress.  The detective working the case was having a hard time charging him because computer crime hadn't been legislated yet, so that gumshoe used the old trick of aggregating the offenses and charging the kid with a felony under the Criminal Damage to Property statute.  The judge, after adjudication, put the kid on probation with the condition that he use no computers while under supervision.  We went to talk with the judge to get that condition clarified and at the end of the meeting, that kid was back in the 1960s.  He couldn't use a telephone, because when you pick up a phone to draw dial-tone, you're using a computer.  He couldn't drive a car made after 1980 because those vehicles had computer chips.  There were lots of things that kid couldn't do because computers were becoming so pervasive in today's society.  Today he couldn't turn on a television, drive a car, use a cell phone, or have an ATM card.  All those things are computers.

All those other folks can be outraged about the interview of a convicted felon, but I stand with the probation officers.  He's a convicted felon, and felons lose lots of rights while they're under probation supervision.  He'll get many of those rights back when he completes his sentence, but until then, I've got no sympathy for him.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


So, it appears that our ambassador to Libya was killed this morning, or Tuesday depending on the source, in what some are calling a coordinated attack on our embassy.
"This was a coordinated attack, more of a commando style event. It had both coordinated fire, direct fire, indirect fire," (Congressman Mike) Rogers said following an intelligence briefing on Capitol Hill.
Really. A coordinated attack. It also looks like he was sold out by his contract security staffers. I saw a report earlier that there were no Marines on the compound, that someone had opted for local contract security and that they sold out the ambassador.

 I blame Hillary Clinton for this fiasco. We should have a platoon of Marines stationed at every embassy in the world.  But, in the meantime we should give the Libyan government about a month to trot out the guilty parties and hang them in the streets.  Then, give them another 30 days to convert to Christianity.  Better yet, 30 days to convert the whole country to Judaism. If they fail at either task, begin immediate arc-light strikes across Benghazi.  Keep it up until the rubble is thoroughly turned and the population is dead.  Then salt the earth.

Killing an ambassador is way beyond the pale.  It looks as if these bastards want a holy war.  I say that we give them one.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Followers of the Pedophile

I see that the followers of the pedophile prophet have once again shown their ignorance, bias, and lack of understanding as to the true character of their supposed prophet.
(Reuters) - Egyptian protesters scaled the walls of the U.S. embassy on Tuesday, tore down the American flag and burned it during a protest over what they said was a film being produced in the United States that insulted Prophet Mohammad.
Freedom of speech really has these people stymied, doesn't it? It's as if they really don't understand that in the United States we're free to insult anyone, including their pedophile prophet. Personally, I think that Mohammed was simply a conquerer, a pedophile, and used religion to maintain his position among backwards people.

The problem, as I see it, is that followers of Mohammed are still backwards people.  Their religion is a sham and they worship a rock.
Many Muslims consider any depiction of the Prophet to be offensive.
Not a problem, as I consider the entire faith to be offensive. Their list of human rights violations are legion, they treat women like chattel, and their prophet had sex with children. Go figure that they're a screwed-up religion.

If we had a real President, he would have ordered the Marines at the embassy to shoot anyone who tried to come over the wall, and he would have had carrier jets level the area around the embassy.  But, we don't have a real President.  Simply a sham-man who bows to foreign leaders.  Today of all times would have been the perfect time to level a couple of square miles of downtown Cairo, then ask the leadership there if they're capable of controlling their people.

Where Were You?

I began Tuesday, September 11, 2001 at midnight, counting inmates in the local jail. I was a jailer at that time and our shift completed count and as the vast majority of the offenders was asleep, we made another pot of coffee and settled in. We woke them at 4:00 am for breakfast and completed another count. Our relief arrived shortly thereafter and we were released at 5:00.

I went home and fell into bed. At about 7:50 am (central time) my phone rang, a friend telling me that a plane had just flown into the World Trade Center and that we were under attack. In my REM sleep phase, I hung up the phone and rolled over. The phone rang again a few minutes later, so I got up and went into the kitchen to make coffee. As the coffee dripped, I turned on the television just in time to watch the second plane go in at 9:03 am. All I could think was “That was no accident.”

 I lay on the couch for the rest of the day, napping as the horror unfolded. I remember getting up about noon and making a big plate of eggs and hashbrowns for lunch and thinking that I needed to get some sleep before the evening shift I still had to complete.I lived in the country at the time and it was common to see contrails all over the sky from the various routes that crisscross the United States.

I recall going out into the bright sunlight that afternoon under a cloudless sky and noticed that there were no contrails at all. All aviation in the United States was grounded and the sky was awfully quiet. At 4:00 pm local I put on a clean uniform and went to work.


Today is September 11th, and my flag is flying over the driveway.

More later, but today is a day to remember.

Monday, September 10, 2012


I haven't worked fiberglass in 40 years, back when my Dad was partnering around with Chester Kubes, a local body and fender man.  We made pirogues in the back of Chester's shop, a duck boat that looked like a kayak, but with cajun overtones.  We made them out of fiberglass and Chester sold a bunch of them.  They were virtually indestructible and I occasionally see one locally that I know was made in Chester's shop.

When the squirrels ate a hole in my corn feeder, I decided to patch it with fiberglass and one thing led to another and I didn't get around to patching the hole until today.  When I was mixing the resin with the hardener to saturate the fiberglass cloth, the smell wafted up and I was back in Chester's shop.  It's funny how smells carry away the years, and it's been nearly 40 years since I first smelled fiberglass resin.

That's three layers of glass over the hole, and while I know that it's rough, working fiberglass always looks rough until the layers set up, the resin hardens, and you can use a grinder on it.  It'll wait till tomorrow and I'll clean it up.  I think the old men would approve of my patch job, even if it's got a couple of bubbles in the resin.  It'll be okay.

But, just for a while, I was a teenager again, in a body shop on Lee Street.

A National Embarrasment

A National Embarrasment.  That's what the Chicago Tribune headline says about the teacher's strike.
The religious leaders were critical of the political turn the negotiations took. "It's a national embarrassment in the middle of a national campaign," said Hatch.
I know how I'd deal with the strike. I'd give the striking teaches till tomorrow at 8:00 a.m. to return to the classroom or be fired. No questions asked, no quarter given. This is what unions are good for. They're arguably the highest paid teachers in the nation and they go out on strike. Fire 'em all. Break the union and pay them at the lowest levels in the nation.

 Mayor Rahm won't break the union, though. He's a Godless Democrat and he needs union support to stay elected. The deal he made with the devil of organized labor to get elected is getting repaid today. It's the Chicago Way.

The picture that's being posted on Drudge, and other places is telling of the Chicago Teacher's Union.

They look like they need a raise, don't they?  What they need is several years unemployed, fired for cause.  Plus, the blog comment of the day “The teachers are upset because they must be (gasp!) evaluated on their work. The parents are upset, not because their kids’ educations are impacted, but because they don’t have a place to drop off their kid. The only people cited as having any concerns whatsoever about education were 16 and 17 year old students.”

Hell, I get evaluated on my work every day.  I haven't had a raise in four years. I'd fire the whole bunch, and offer them about $30.000 per year.  I'd make them the lowest paid teachers in the nation and tell them if they didn't like it, to carry their collective asses.

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Tax Free Weekend

Every year, Louisiana sponsors a tax free weekend for hunting, fishing, and outdoor sports.  Basically, anything that a person might use during the hunting season is free from state and local sales taxes.  In my area, the sales tax is 9.5%, so the tax free weekend represents a fairly nice discount.

I needed a new deer feeder and I've been looking at the Moultrie Easy-Fill feeder for a deer stand I intend to construct in a few weeks.  So, today I hied myself to my local retailer and picked up a feeder.  Lots of folks buy big ticket items this weekend, and anything that might be used for hunting or fishing counts as tax free.  If I had needed a new four-wheeler, or a new rifle, this would be the weekend.  However, I'm happy to support my local retailer and I needed a new feeder, so that's what I purchased.  I'm happy to have it, the retailer is happy to have it out of inventory, and Louisiana is happy to support the 2nd Amendment.  It's a win-win for everybody.

More Spam

So, I get this email from some idiot I've never heard from, asking me to register and vote for Barack Obama.  Hah!

I've been registered to vote since I was eighteen.  I doubt I'll be voting for Obama.  The guy ends with this laugh line.  "Thanks -- this won't be the last you hear from me."

Uuuh, yeah it will.  You're in the spam folder.

Sunday Morning Dawg

We're experiencing our first real cool front of the season.  Temps have moderated considerably since morning and Milady decided to cook a big potato soup for supper.  The dog, of course, is considerably interested in cooking.  Especially when it smells good.

He's superintending the entire process.  Hoping for a snack, I guess.

Saturday, September 08, 2012

Soft-pedaling Pedophilia

There's this Gawker piece that drawing a lot of internet commentary. It deals with pedophilia and seems to be somewhat sympathetic.
But there is a growing number of researchers, many of them out of Canada, whose work suggests that pedophilia is an illness deserving of the public's sympathy the way any brain disorder is. Some of the scientists say pedophilia is a sexual orientation, meaning that it's unchangeable, regardless of how much jail time or beatings or therapy someone is dealt
I don't know about the psychology of pedophilia, but I've been a practitioner in child abuse cases from back when I was a Probation and Parole Officer. With no academic training in the field, but simply from working with those offenders in the real world, I'm convinced as well that the condition is unchangeable. It seems to be a sexual orientation, like heterosexuality or homosexuality.  I am not at all sympathetic, but I realize that there are various categories these folks fall into, and in my work-a-day mind, I characterize them into three categories.

I've found it interesting that many that I've known tend to specialize in one gender or the other, often not switching between heterosexual or homosexual liasons.  Another interesting fact is that the vast majority of offenders are male.  The female pedophile is an abject rarity.  Virtually unheard of in the system and I comment on them mainly because they are so rare.

First, and most dangerous, is the "Chester the Molestor" category.  These guys are active predators and are not only dangerous to children within their reach, they seek out victims seemingly at random.  It might be as innocuous as a child selling product for a school fund-raiser.  All kids are potential sex partners in his mind and he's dangerous to all of them.

The second category is the offender who doesn't actively seek victims, but offends with children in his social circle.  This might be the favored uncle, or the school teacher.  They don't intend to harm children, but gain trust and mistake that trust for affection and perceived sexual interest on the part of the child.  The child is often torn with guilt and doesn't want to tell responsible adults that they've been molested.  These guys do the most damage because of the conflict that they introduce into families and social circles. 

The third category is that guy who lets himself, through intoxication, become involved in a pedophilia incident.  It's not something that we can overlook, and the damage is certainly done, but often the offender did not intend to commit an offense, whereas the other two categories were in full understanding of the situation.

These are your classic pedophiles.  There is another category of offender, generally the guy in his late teens or early '20s who gets himself involved in a situation with a girl who is under the age of consent, but is indeed consenting.  I don't consider these guys pedophiles, although the law applies to them as well.

It is my experience, of the three classes of classic pedophiles, they recidivate at high levels.  Most of them wind up back in jail. They are dangerous to kids and will re-offend if given the opportunity.  The best place for them is in prison, simply because the prison setting keeps the children away.  They can't re-offend if there are no children available.

Don't expect me to have any sympathy for pedophiles.  I've worked with them for too long to have anything but revulsion for them.  The best way to keep these folks from re-offending is to keep them locked up.

There is one more class of pedophile that might deserve mention, and the article mentions those folks. 
Others have reason to believe that pedophiles are born that way, and that some of them will suffer through entire lives without hurting a single child.
If they never hurt a single child, they're not offenders in the eyes of the law. We don't convict people on their predilictions, we convict them on their actions. If someone knows that he's attacted to children, but never acts on it, I don't believe that he's in violaion. It's not against the law to have lurid thoughts.

Friday, September 07, 2012

Friday Morning

In another hour I'm going to pull my boots on and head toward the school house.  Tonight is our first home game of the football season, so I'll be totally engaged until the last car leaves the parking lot.  So, don't look for content here.  There's plenty of good content out there today.  The Godless Democrats finished their convention last night, and nominated another Godless Democrat to run against a good Mormon boy for President.  I understand that he gave a speech that could be best described as ... Meh! Jennifer Rubin may have a better take on it than I.
Seriously. Like an aging rock star, President Obama, in a downsized venue, with downsized proposal and spewing downsized rhetoric only reminded us how far he has fallen from the heady days of 2008. The man, the agenda and the aura are faint imitations of their 2008 incarnations. And most importantly, he put forth an agenda that was entirely, and obviously, lacking, one that didn’t begin to match the demands of our time.
So, just exactly what is the argument for re-electing him?

Thursday, September 06, 2012

In God We Trust

The Democratic National Convention continues to provide light comic relief, to include the vote yesterday on whether to include God in their platform.  Seriously.  The vote is subject to claim, but it's telling that they voted three times without a clear majority, and the chair decided that the motion had passed.  This is high political theater at its best.

So, now, the Democratic Party is on record, voting against God three times.  There's some biblical reference there, and the story of Jesus will tell it.  However, Adam West, a staunch conservative currently in an election campaign is quick to capitalize on the godless Democrats.

Tonight, our President will take the (considerable smaller) stage and lay out his plan for the next four years.  Hopefully that will include his plan to leave Washington in early 2013 and retire to Hawaii.  That's my idea of his best plan to get the country back on track.

Godless Democrats.  Heh!

Wednesday, September 05, 2012


The best laid plans of mice and men oft go awry, and today was no exception.  I spent the afternoon in the pool with grandkids, trying to keep them from drowning themselves, each other, and me.

This one has no fear of water at all.  If you take your eyes off him for a minute, he's under.

This one's learning to swim and he'll be out of his life jacket next summer.  It already chafes him to wear it.

Oh, well, the grass will wait another day.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Electoral Map

CNN shows us their idea of today's electoral map, representing their best guess as to the upcoming presidential election.  It's an interactive map and you can play with it, but I thought it might be better to save it, then look again on the day after the election and see how close they were.  It'll be interesting.  As always, you can click on the map for a larger version.

That's what it looks like today, with yellow being the battleground states.  Still, it's interesting to capture these things from time to time and see how the race progresses.

The Handi Rifle

For those of you not familiar with the Handi-Rifle, you're missing something.  For years they were produced by Harrington and Richardson, who also produced a line of shotguns called the Partner.  These are simple starter rifles available in a wide range of calibers from .22LR to .45-70.  At one time or another, many small runs of obsolete calibers were produced, but for the most part, the little rifles come in the standard rifle caliber flavors.  I own four, in .223, .30-30, .308, and .45-70.  Nowadays they are produced by H&R 1871 at the Ilion plant that produces Remington firearms.  (Yeah, Remington owns Marlin, who owned H&R.)  Bud's Gun Shop stocks them, as does others.  I see that they're currently being sold for a street price of about $300.00, depending on flavor.

That rifle pictured is my .308.  It's made in a variety they call the Ultra.  It has a laminated stock with pressed checkering and a medium-weight 22" barrel.  It weighs 8.2 lbs according to my bathroom scale, and has an overall length of just 38 inches.  I've mounted an old Tasco World Class scope on it.  This particular rifle exhibits honest 2" accuracy at 100 yards with my standard .308 load.  I currently load for five rifles in .308 and I don't worry about such things as OAL for each rifle.  I've got one load set for a son's target rifle and all .308 ammo produced on my bench is set for best accuracy for that rifle.  Keeping records on every rifle would be onerous, so I've settled on a standard load.  Still, a 2MOA rifle is nothing to sneeze at in the hunting woods and while I'm sure this one would do better with proper load development, it suffices for my purposes.  With great glass and ammo tailored to the rifle, it might be a tack-driver, but I'll never know.

The beauty of this rifle, in my opinion, is safety, durability, and ruggedness.  It's a single-shot which means when the grandkids are shooting, I can control the ammo very closely.  It's got a transfer bar action which means that the trigger must be pulled for the rifle to fire.  It's very safe.

It's also handy.  I have no trouble ringing the 200 yard gong at a local range, set up to simulate the heart-lung region of a whitetail deer.  In short, the little rifle is shootable.  It's a great rifle for a youngster and a good rifle for the frugal hunter who is willing to accept the limitations of a single-shot rifle.  If you're casting about for a great little rifle made in the USA and you're thinking that a single shot is all you need, you could do a lot worse than the Handi rifle.  I did a more complete review in 2010 for Castbullet.  If you'd like to read it, clicky here for more information.

Monday, September 03, 2012

Disband the TSA

Given the fact that the TSA is as close as we can come to a government goon, they've expanded beyond their original commission, and they're inserting themselves into venues far beyond transportation, how long before we disband them.  Just pass legislation telling the country that the TSA no longer exists and tell everyone that works for the agency that they're now unemployed.  We'll still pay them for 99 weeks, but that's better than the alternative.  Let's just disband the TSA.  Entirely.

So you really want me to provide links?  Google is your friend.  Okay, just one.

On Labor Day

I remember when Labor Day was a day for a big union barbecue.   Dad was a union man for much of his working life, then came to realize that they were a drag on much of what passes for productivity.  Like many good ideas, the organized unions morphed from worrying about the working man to enriching the coffers of the organizers, the union officials, and in many cases, organized crime.  My earliest active memory is laying on a quilt while Mom and Dad danced a jitterbug at a union picnic.  Good times.  Good memories.

Still, we celebrate Labor Day in any number of ways, most prominently by not working, if we're able.  In that great scheme, I'm off work today and I have nothing planned.  That is to say, I plan to do nothing.   That is my active plan.  The last of the grandkids are about to head home after a weekend of fun and frolic at PawPaw's House and the place will grow peacefully quiet, broken only by gentle snoring emanating from my recliner.

I've got some stuff in the publishing queue, but nothing that won't wait.

The Conversation

I see another pundit reporting that the Democratic Party wants a conversation on gun control.
The draft language of the Democrats' 2012 platform – set for a final vote this week in Charlotte – argues that current safeguards protecting the public against gun violence are insufficient and urges "an honest and open conversation about firearms."
We've been having that conversation since 1968, and it's been both honest and open. It might be instructive to see what they want and the article lays out two of the sticking points.
The document also calls for "reasonable regulation" governing guns, including laws banning assault weapons and requiring all gun sellers – not just licensed dealers – to perform background checks on potential buyers.
And there's the problem. We already have laws banning assault weapons. Those laws have been in place since 1934 Fully automatic assault weapons are all-but-banned to the general population. I cannot go out and purchase a rifle like I carried in the Army for most of my career.  Their second point would require that if I want to give a gun to a son or grandson that I go through a licensed dealer to have the NICS approve the transfer.  Hogwash, all of it.

Don't be misled.  What they want is a ban, a total ban, and if anyone tells you anything else, it's also hogwash.  We've been having this "open and honest conversation" most of my life and it entails encroaching on my rights.  I remember when I could walk into a shop, buy a gun with cash across the counter and walk out with the gun over my shoulder, just as easily as I'd buy a loaf of bread.  I bought my first shotgun at age 13, just like that.  Since then it's been one "reasonable" regulation after another and no one can prove that any of them have done anything to stop gun violence.

Not anymore.  We've been having this conversation for over 40 years.  Nothing that the gun banners have done has worked for the simple reason that guns don't commit violence.  People commit violence and no one has any idea how to control that.

The problem that the banners have is that they've already lost the conversation.  By our collective actions, writing, speaking, talking, teaching, explaining, we've seen a tremendous expansion of gun rights from where it was 20 years ago.  The ability to get a concealed carry permit is almost an absolute right, with gun-banning holdout areas excepted.  It is interesting to note that the gun banning holdout areas are often the ones with the most gun violence, a trait that we've been able to point out time and time again.  Gun banning doesn't work.  Look at the places with the most onerous regulations, and look at the crime stats there.

No, they've lost the argument.  They've lost in the Courts where expansion of human rights is important to freedom.  They've lost in the legislatures, who see their arguments as detrimental to freedom-loving peoples.  They've lost in the public opinion, where many people see the benefit of owning, shooting, and passing along firearms.  They've lost in the marketplace where the gun industry is the one bright shining spot in this otherwise horrible economy.

They've lost everywhere but those few backwards, anachronistic areas like California, Illinois, and New York.  Places that were once vibrant, exciting, and bustling are now shedding businesses, economically stagnant, and horribly violent.  Not a place that anyone would want to live.  Certainly not any place that a freedom loving person would want to live.

For myself, I'm finished with this conversation, and I'm certainly through being reasonable.  When reasonable people negotiate, when they try to compromise on an issue, both sides lose a little to come to a middle ground.  It's been my experience with the banners that they never give anything, they never lose anything.  It's always my side that loses.  We lose rights, we lose freedom.  I've got a few ideas of my own, but I'm sure that the banners won't get on board, and I'm saving those thoughts for the conversation.  But, my big question for the banners is this.  What are you willing to give up?  If you want to bring something to the table, you've got to be willing to compromise, you've got to be willing to lose something.  What are you bringing to the table?

Sunday, September 02, 2012

Sunday Morning Dawg

In the aftermath of Isaac, life is returning to normal in the Gret Stet.  PawPaw has spent most of the weekend untie-ing lawn furniture and cleaning up after the storm.  Grandkids are over for the weekend, and rambling around the place.  The dog never did get that haircut, but I don't think he's in any danger of running afoul of the haircut police.  He's lounging, watching grandkids.

And, every time I move he looks at me as if to ask, "What's for lunch".

It's good to have things getting back to normal.

Saturday, September 01, 2012


Some poor kid got shot in Chicago, in the neighborhood where our President owns his Chicago residence.  Really.
A teenage boy was shot about a block from President Obama’s home, in the second such incident in the past week.
But that's un-possible, you see, because gun ownership is all-but-illegal in Chicago. Evidently, that's the second shooting in the neighborhood this week, another kid was gunned down just three blocks away.

When only the criminals have guns, the crooks are empowered to predate on the public.  That's the failure of gun control, and the failure of policies that keep guns from honest, law-abiding citizens.


That last post about my old writings got me to remembering, and I remembered a piece that I wrote in the mid '90s.  It was originally submitted to a newspaper and was published as a guest writer piece.  Later I reworked it and published it on Castbullet.  When we edited the piece we realized it needed some artwork, so  we asked my son to do a scene with guys sitting around a campfire.

It's a story about hunting and the choices we make when we're all alone in the woods.  I've moved it over to my server to preserve it there and you can read it, either at Castbullet or on my site.

Enjoy.    Choices.