Wednesday, October 20, 2021

The Fat Electrician Reviews: Tankers & M1 Abrams tank

Joe sent me this via email.  Thanks, Joe.  Warning - F-bombs are frequent.

Crunchies.  Not a term we use in polite company.

Small Arms of World War I

 CandRsenal has a series of great videos about the small arms of World War 1.

I was surprised to learn that Winchester had two iconic lever guns adopted by foreign powers for use during that war.  And no, I'm not talking about the Russians

Britain adopted the Winchester 1892 for naval duty.

France adopted the Winchester 1894 for rear-echelon duty.

Amazing.  And fascinating.

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Plane Crash Near Houston

 It seems that an aircraft was on the takeoff roll and something went terribly wrong.

No one was seriously hurt when an airplane bound for Boston ran off a runway and burned Tuesday morning near Houston, authorities said. The McDonnell Douglas MD-87 was carrying 21 people when it rolled through a fence and caught fire while trying to take off from the Houston Executive Airport in Brookshire.

I'm glad no one was seriously hurt,  I doubt that when the pilot left the runway, the idea of taking off had long ago left the agenda.

I bet that the last 100 yards was truly exciting.

SCOTUS Upholds Qualified Immunity

 Qualified Immunity is a legal term that protects government officers when the are doing their job in accordance with established law.  Qualified immunity is especially important to police officers  who are often required to do things that might otherwise open them to monetary damages in the course of their employment.

Obviously I'm no lawyer.  I am a retired cop, and my definition above may not stand up to highly technical legal scrutiny, but it's close enough.  Sometimes cops are called to do things that the average citizen would not be called to do.  If they take an action that is legal under established law, and in accordance with their agency policy and training, then generally, thy can't be sued for taking that action.

Over the past several years, we have sen various actors and organizations trying to change the way that police officers do their jobs.  This is a valid process, and during my 37 year career as a police officer, I saw many changes in the way that policing was conducted.  Most of these changes were for the better. But, if an agency trains an officer to do a job, and that officer comports themselves within the limits prescribed by that training, th law should not hold him liable when something bad happens.

Yesterday, SCOTUS upheld qualified immunity in two separate cases

In two unsigned opinions Monday, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of police officers seeking qualified immunity from allegations of excessive force.

In both cases, the justices overturned lower court decisions that went against the officers.

This was an unsigned decision, with no justice filing a dissenting opion, which tends to indicae that it is a unanimous decision.  That is good news for street cops, who these days are under great pressure from outside actors about the way they do their job.

This is a big win for street cops.

Monday, October 18, 2021

Headline One-Liners

 Canada Bans Public Employees from Using 'Let's Go Brandon'

Well, Canada doesn't have a First Amendment, so what do you expect.

Colin Powell Dies of COVID Complications

I hear that he was battling cancer, but he was one guy I might have voted for if he ever decided to run for President.

Will Biden Blow It for McAuliffe in Virginia?

We can only hope so.

1 dead, 7 hurt in shooting during Grambling State University homecoming event

That is a damned shame, on several levels.

Southwest Pilots

 Stolen from Wirecutter.


That's funny, right there.

Sunday, October 17, 2021

Haiti Outlaws

 I just saw a report that a Haitian gang has kidnapped 17 Americans, including children, who were in the country building an orphanage.

I am outraged.

If we had a president who was not cognitively  challenged, something might be done about it, but I hold no great anticipation in that regard.

If I were running the show, I'd have a division going "wheels-up" within 24 hours.  They could stage out of Guantanamo.  I'm thinking 101, or maybe the 10th.  Or both.

But this president?  Haaah, ain't gonna happen.  He's doing the best he can to emulate, and under perform in the manner of Jimmah Carter.

Sunday Coffee

 It's the first real cool snap of the season, a dry front that rolled in early Saturday morning, and has finally settled in over my acre.  At daylight, it was 43 degrees out there, and I will put on a flannel shirt before I go out to the shop.  It's supposed to warm up into the mid 70s later today.

We have people coming for lunch, and Belle is cooking her signature Chicken Fried Steak.  With white gray, mashed potatoes, and lima beans.  I need to proof some yeast rolls, and they'll go in a warm oven shortly.

I suspect I'd better get at it.  Y'all have a wonderful Sunday.

Saturday, October 16, 2021

Lunch

 Belle was steak-hungry, so she sent me down to Guillory's for some beef.  I had them cut two little filets, about 8 oz each,   I brought them home, put some potatoes in the oven, and abut the time the 'taters were done, I fired up the griddle.  I seared them off on the griddle, then finished them in melted butter.


Medium rare, of course, With a Shiner Bock to wash it down.  It made a nice little lunch, and it's such a beautiful day, I think I'm going to open another beer and sit in the open door of the shop and watch traffic. Ain't no sense spoiling a day like this by being productive.

Friday, October 15, 2021

Clips: Was this always a double action?

Single or Double action?  Othias breaks it down for us.

Irish Democracy

 An interesting New York Post column about the public's response to irrational Covid restrictions.

If regular democracy isn’t doing so well, maybe it’s time to fall back on “Irish Democracy.”

That’s what Yale political scientist James Scott calls the passive resistance of a society that doesn’t like what its rulers are doing to it. In his book “Two Cheers for ­Anarchy,” he writes, “One need not have an actual conspiracy to achieve the practical effects of a conspiracy. More regimes have been brought, piecemeal, to their knees by what was once called ‘Irish Democracy,’ the silent, dogged resistance, withdrawal and truculence of millions of ordinary people, than by revolutionary vanguards or rioting mobs.”

As it turns out, most of Louisiana has been practicing Irish Democracy for over a year.  Last year, when they were begging us to stay home for Christmas, we had a great Christmas.   Since then, we have routinely ignored our governor, who desperately wants to be a petty tyrant.

Last week, I wandered into a store, on an errand from Belle.  An employee at the door asked me if I would like to wear a mask?  "Not particularly" I replied, and kept walking.  No issues, no problems. Had the employee insisted, I would have simply trued and gone down the street.  Other merchants exist to provide alternatives.

I took the government at their word, when they said a year ago that if we got vaccinated, we could return to normal.  I consulted with my doctor, decided that the jab was worth the risk, and then returned to normal.  We have learned since then that those pronouncements were a hollow sham.  The vaccine really doesn't provide immunity, that the vaccinated can still succumb to the virus, and that this whole exercise is more about the power of bureaucrats than it is about immunity.  

I choose freedom.

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Deer Down

 Grandson Brett tagged his first deer today on the family lease, a middling doe, taken with a Ruger American in 7mm-08,


His dad claims that Brett did it right.  Took his time, squeezed the shot, and  dropped the deer in her tracks.  Very good job,

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

The Biden Scorecard

 Pore ol' Joe.  Everything he touches turns to shit.  Let's take a look, shall we?

Military - The US Military just suffered a humiliating defeat in Afghanistan.  Worse than Saigon, where at least we kept shooting the enemy as we left.  Let me be clear:  I have great faith in the fidelity, honor, and bravery of our troops, it is the flag officers that I question.  No one has been relieved over this debacle, which leads me to believe that they were "just following orders", (a defense that died at Nuremberg).  If so, it's Joe's fault.  All his fault.

Public Health - Laughable at best, yet tragic nonetheless.  The states that ignore Joe are doing better than the states that comply with idiotic rules.  His chief covid guru is regarded as unreliable by over half the US population.

Economy - The economy continues to stutter, plagued by high unemployment and low jobs numbers.  We can't decide if we are in inflation or stagflation, but neither is good.  Fuel prices are up, even though we were a net exporter of energy 18 months ago.  Joe continues to cripple drilling and exploration.

Transportation - The transportation sector is a shambles, from airline travel to container ships.  Mainly based on Joe's vax mandate.  This is causing a ripple effect through the economy.  I could not buy milk at a DOllar Store yesterday.  The shelf was simply bare.

Justice - Our Justice Department has decided to target parents who raise hell at local School Board meetings, declaring them domestic terrorists.  The catch-and-release policies of the left are casing a massive crime spike in many cities, and Hillary still walks free.  The FBI is a laughing-stock.

Foreign Policy - China has more problems than a pregnant prostitute, and is looking at Taiwan.  No one believes that Joe is willing, able, or interested in stopping them.  His Se State, Blinken, is so clueless that he believed anything the Taliban told him.

Immigration - Teh border is an unmitigated disaster, by design.  His border czar, the bitch Harris, wants nothing to do with it.

Yet, Joe is completely secure in his presidency.  The folks who could remove him are in his cabinet, and they are aware that a Harris presidency would be even worse.

That is the state of the nation as I see it.  We have a year until the next congressional elections, and we should not get cocky.  We need to elect strong conservative leaders (not RINOs) into the next Congress.

Fauci's Credibility

 It seems that Dr. Anthony Fauci is suffering a well-deserved loss of credibility.  I say well deserved, because his messaging is inconsistent, and it it has become plainly obvious to everyone with a brain that he preens for the camera and seeks out limelight.  Instapundit links to an article:

COVID-19 czar Dr. Anthony Fauci’s credibility is down to an all-time low after he raised doubts about families gathering for Christmas.

In the latest Rasmussen Reports survey, 54% of likely voters agreed that he has lost “all credibility.”

As a civil servant, Dr. Fauci has a requirement to account for his time.  He is not an elected official and works for the people.  While one might argue that when he is being a talking head on CNN, he is performing his job to educate the public, it is hard to argue that participating in a documentary for Disney is part of his job.   If anyone believes that he participated in the production during those hours when he is not required to be at work, then we do live in a dream world.

I would argue that a civil servant who is responsible for the government's response to a pandemic during a surge of that pandemic does not have time to make a documentary edifying himself.  Were I his supervisor, I would want to see leave records during each and every time he consulted with Disney during the production of that ego-trip.  He is still a civil servant, and work rules apply.

All that aside, he has caused irreparable damage to the profession of public health.  When I quit listening to Fauci, I also quit listening to those who parrot his prescriptions.  Those thousands of dedicated public health officials are now considered reliable.  If they parrot Fauci, they live in the same cage he inhabits.  That is a shame.  I suspect that some of them may be good people, just unwilling of unable to think for themselves.

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Fly The Friendly Skies

 It looks like this Southwest thing is taking off.  According to PJMedia, this is a coordinated effort by pilots, attendants, gate agents, and other folks to protest vaccine mandates.

“They’re all going to look like fools soon,” said the insider. That would be nothing new for the fake news media. But it’s not just Southwest Airlines employees who have conscientious objections to mandates. According to the source, there are 22 airlines, along with truckers and other transportation employees represented in their ranks and more disruptions are to come. The employees are all joining FreedomFlyers.org, a website that was set up a few weeks ago to connect like-minded people and to fundraise for the effort of fighting against mandatory vaccines. They released a video that keeps being removed from social media but can be seen on their website. 

The Freedom Flyers website is here, and there is more information at the link. 

If, like me, you have been noticing shortages in the stores, one wonders if this is catching on?

Let Freedom ring!

Early Migration

 We're supposed to get a cool front through this weekend, sometime Friday, but one harbinger of cooler weather is geese, and we have them.


The geese arrived early this year.  We normally have a half-dozen in the home gaggle, but there are at least 20 in this photo, taken ten minutes ago in my front yard.  I used to spend lots of money, time and effort hunting these things, and I don't begrudge my youthful enthusiasm, but nowadays if I want a goose, all I need is a quiet moment, a good .22 rile, and I can get one out of the yard.  

It's not technically legal (in fact, it's technically illegal), but I would claim age, senility, and protection of property.  Plus, I don't think that the game wardens would even slow down to investigate.  These thigs are like winged rats around here in the winter.  

Southwest Offers Free Flignts

 I understand that Southwest Airlines is offering free flights to select customers who fit a particular set of criteria.

The successful passenger must 1) be fully vaccinated, 2) hold a current ATP certificate, and 3) be type-rated on the aircraft.  Passengers meeting those simple criteria can fly for free, just as soon as they find some flight attendants.

Oh, wait, that's the Bee.  Never mind.

Monday, October 11, 2021

The Airlines

 The airlines have been all over the news today, especially Southwest Airlines, which seems to be leading the pack.  Airline companies are huge, complex companies that deal in routing theory, or as we called them in business school, transportation models.  If an airplane leaves from A ad goes to B, then back to A, it needs to make money both ways.  If a pilot doesn't sow up, or if maintenance problems crop up, then eventually you won't have assets i place where you need them when you need them.

It seems that crews are in turmoil over the vaccine mandate, and they're making their turmoil known.  I'm hearing that the FAA controllers are in turmoil as well.  You don't move aircraft without pilots, crews, and controllers.  Some people are saying that it is about freedom.

One pilot put out a video, and I'll try to link it here.

There seems to be a lot of John Galt in the industry, and it's making its weight be felt.  You don't hire pilots, or mechanics, or crews in one day.  Or truck drivers, or nurses, or lots of people who are very important to the economy.  Perhaps personal freedom is starting to assert itself.

Asked and Answered

 Juval, in comments, asked a few questions about my jambalaya recipe

How many does that recipe feed?

Four to six, depending on appetite, or if you serve it with sides. That is a hard question to answer.  We usually serve it as a one-pot meal without sides, but some folks like a salad with it.  There are no rules in Cajun cooking.  Yesterday's recipe was 1.5 chickens, three pounds of sausage, and six cups of uncooked rice.  I fed  ten people, and we had a bit left over.

If I were cooking a small batch, I'd use two boneless chicken thighs, a half pound of sausage, and two cups of rice, a bell pepper, and maybe a half-stalk of celery.

How well do leftovers do for follow up meals?

It does pretty well.  It will stay in the fridge three or four days.  Just take a serving out and put it in the microwave to heat it.  I've never tried to freeze it.   It generally doesn't last that long.

It's just me and the missus and I don't want to waste food.

I hear you, brother.  I don't like to waste food, either.  But with a teenage grandson in the house, that's never a problem. 

ATC Walkout?

 I'm seeing news reports of hundreds of flights cancelled or delayed over the weekend because of "staff shortages" and bad weather.  Reports are starting to trickle out that the "staff shortages" might be related to Biden's vax mandate.

Passengers flying to and from Jacksonville International Airport during the weekend faced flight cancellations and delays amid widely circulating rumors on social media of a sickout or a walkout of air traffic controllers at the Traffic Control Center in Hillard.

The Federal Aviation Administration denied the rumors — sort of — in a Sunday afternoon statement.

Instapundit has information that the ATC personnel either walked out, or had a sickout. 

When your air traffic controllers walk off, there is a staff shortage, no doubt about that.

PJMedia says that the issue might not be air traffic controllers, but Southwest pilots.

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Jambalaya

 It's getting that time of year again, when cool mornings and warm afternoons put us in the mood for good, filling food.  Plain fare.  We have people coming over for lunch, and I'm in the mood for jambalaya.  Some old, dead chicken, some good smoked sausage, onion, bell pepper, and celery.  Some Tony's seasoning, and you have what you need.


Everything is prepped now, and I'm waiting another hour before I add the rice and chicken broth and slip it in the oven until the rice is tender.  My step-by-step recipe is here.

Friday, October 08, 2021

Two motorcyclists shot while riding on I-4 in Polk County | Press Confer...

Evidently there was a shooting in Polk county last night.  Sheriff Grady breaks i down for us.

This has Florida Man written all over it.

Buying Her A Pistol

 A lady, a longtime friend of Belle came over yesterday afternoon for a visit.  She showed me a pistol that her husband had bought for her.  It was a compact 9mm from a reputable manufacturer.  The brand doesn't matter.

She could not operate it.  She didn't like it, she didn't want it.

What she wanted was a small revolver.  But, her husband bought the pistol that he thought was best for her.  It was a nice gesture, but totally unworkable from a self-defense standpoint.  

From long experience, I 'have learned that if the lady wants to have a handgun, she should be intimately involved in the purchase.  She needs to pick out her pistol, and what you think is not part of the equation.  I would no sooner tell my lady what handgun to carry than I would tell her what underwear to wear.  The choice of personal firearm is almost that personal.

Don't do it, guys.  If you lady wants a personal handgun, let her pick it out.

Thursday, October 07, 2021

Best Caliber for Armadillo

 Armadillos are endemic to Texas, Louisiana, and many other southern states.  The little buggers dig tunnels, and root in flower beds.  Not a huge nuisance, but aggravating at worst.  However, they are capable of carrying leprosy, and we don't want them in our yards or pastures.

When I lived in southern Natchitoches Parish, we had quite a population, and would dig huge tunnels in my pasture and yard.  Through experience, I learned to shoot them with a .22LR hollow point.  The little bullet would penetrate the shell, get up in the vitals, and cause massive injury.  The armadillo would run to his hole, crawl in, and expired.

After learning to use the .22, I never had to drag off a dead armadillo.  They were self-burying, and that was the proper answer.  The less we have to handle armadillos, the better.

Wednesday, October 06, 2021

Busy Wednesday

 0730 at the Honda dealer for warranty work.  About halfway home, Belle texts me that she left her purse in my van.  The fellow giving me a ride would be late for work if we back-tracked, so I had him drop me at hone, then took the truck a half-hour to the dealership to retrieve Belles purse, which I dropped off at her office.

Then she asked me to pick up a few things at the Dollar Store and take them to a disabled friend. All on the way hone, not two parking lots out of my way..  I got that done, then came home, folded laundry from the trip last week.  Now, I'm out in the shop trying to make sense of the stuff we took to Nevada.

The guns need a thorough cleaning, a basic clean, inspect, check screws.  I still have lunch to cook, and I have a friend coming over at 1300 who needs help with a gun.  She is a fellow gun enthusiast, who texted me yesterday saying that she has a .44 revolver that is loaded and needs to be unloaded.

This lady is a CFDA shooter, and is thoroughly familiar with single action revolvers, completely capable of loading and unloading those.  So, I admit that I am a bit intrigued at her request.  It may be anything.  But, we'll unload it, inspect it, and probably clean it for her.  I'll try to teach her how to safely load and unload.  I admit I am intrigued, it may be something special, it may be something a common as a Redhawk.  We'll see.

**UPDATE**.  It was a Smith 29 with the 8" barrel.  The classic "Dirty Harry" gun.  It has lived in her lingerie drawer for the past 10 years and she needed it to whack an intrusive armadillo. The revolver had stiffened up from lack of use and dried oil.   When I first picked it up, it was locked up tighter than a bank vault.  Just a little gentle manipulation, and we got the cylinder open, unloaded her spent cart cartridges and gave it a good cleaning and some oil.  We gently cycled everything, and now it runs like a sewing machine. I let her manipulate it until I was convinced she could operate it safely.  The gun is fine, safe, and fully operational.  She is on her way.

Before she left, we did discuss the appropriate calibers for armadillo.  It is my considered opinion that while effective, the .44 magnum may be a bit much for armadillo.  She also owns a .38 and a .22.

Tuesday, October 05, 2021

The Case Of Lt. Col Scheller

 You folks might remember the case of Lt. Col Scheller, a Marine battalion commander who infamously posted a video demanding accountability following the disastrous rout of Kabul.  Many of us agreed with him that the evacuation was handled poorly, and that senor civilian and military leaders should publicly account for the worst military disaster since Saigon.

Lt. Col Scheller is in jail today, preparing for a hearing to determine if he should face a courts-martial.

The case is complex, and requires an understanding of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, which is decidedly different from civil law.  

 John Lucas provides an over-view of the case at The Federalist.  It provides a balanced view of the case to this point, and deserves a thorough examination.

This case of a rebellious, yet previously honorable officer may not be as simple as it appears on the face.

Despicable

 Early reports are that US General Chris Donahue, the Commander of the 82nd Airborne, kicked our allies off a transport plane sho that he could brig hoe war trophies.

Donahue allegedly booted 50–100 American allies off the cargo plane so he could load a Taliban souvenir — an “inoperable Taliban-owned Toyota Hilux with a fully operational Russian ZU-23 anti-aircraft auto cannon mounted in the bed” — to bring home.

 Not only did this violate standing orders against taking so-called war trophies, but those left behind have been or likely will be killed by the Taliban due to Donahue’s actions.

If true, Donahue violated standing orders and put allies lives at risk.  If true, he should be court-martialed, stripped of rank and pension, ans serve some time peeling potatoes at Leavenworth.  Of course, he is a Trade School officer and  will not be held to account.

 

Monday, October 04, 2021

Tired

 We woke at 4:00 am so that we could leave the hotel before 6:00 am to catch a flight at 8:00.  We loaded on the airplane at RNO (Reno-Tahoe International) for DFW and went wheels down at 1:15 pn, Central.  It was a 2 hour flight, but we crossed a time zone.  We successfully navigated DFW and got to our gate, got some lunch, and learned that we had a gate change.  Not far, thankfully.

Caught the little plane (Embraer 140) and taxied out to the runway.  We had a really interesting takeoff.  Just abut the time we left the ground, the plane rolled at about a 30 degree angle, both directions.  The pilot recovered, and we climbed out successfully.  If she hadn't recovered (yes, our PIC was female), I would not be writing this post.  (Y'all wold be reading about it on the news, and I'd be defunct.)

The rest of the flight was uneventful.  We hit the tarmac at AEX at 6:00 pm, grabbed our luggage and headed home.  I'm dong laundry right now, while enjoying a pleasant cocktail.  In anther hour I'll be in bed, and we'll sort out the debris tomorrow.

Sunday, October 03, 2021

Brackets

 We shot brackets this morning.  Brackets are based on the 2nd fastest time that a shooter posts in the main match, and they distribute the shooters into brackets based on that speed.  The brackets are Master Gunfighter, Gunfighter, Sheriff, and Deputy.  Best three winning shots wins a match.  If you lose two matches, you are out, done, finsished.

Grandson Zach was in the Gunfighter. These guys all shoot in under half of a second, generally from 0.400 to somewhere about 0.500. Zach is known all across the nation as a friendly kid with a quick draw and during his second match, Zach drew Ol' Bucker, a shooter from California.  He and Zach were joshing on the line, and Zach got one hit on him.  On the next light, Zach hit a 0.401.  Ol' Bucker told Zach that his next shot shouldn't count unless Zach could pull a "three".  On the next shot, Zach pulled and hit a 0.394.  Zach put Ol' Bucker out of the match with his second elimination.

In the next bout, Zach drew Gentleman George, another nationally known shooter with many trophies and accolades.  Five shots later, Zach had put George our of the match. Go clean your gun, George, you are done.

Zach got put out himself in the next round.  But, he showed good sportsmanship, a friendly demeanor, and accepted the loss with grace.  It was a very good match, and has nothing to be ashamed of.  He was simply outrun.

It's been a great weekend, and we catch a plane early tomorrow morning for home.

Still Shooting

 It's midnight, depending on which time zone you're in, and we're still in Fallon, shooting with the Cowboy Fast Draw Association.  One more day of shooting, then we will point it toward home.  We will catch an airplane on Monday morning and be home Monday afternoon.

It's been a hoot, the whole thing.  As one shooter explained it to me several years ago, it's like going to a family reunion, with people you actually like.

We will shoot one more match tomorrow morning, then help with the finals.  One more night in a hotel, then a day in modern commercial air travel.  Our connections are pretty good though.  From Reno, one hop to DFW, a pretty fair layover, which will give us time to navigate the terminal, then a short hop home.  I love flying, I really do, but I detest terminals.

Thursday, September 30, 2021

We Made It

 We are in Fallon, NV, for the World's Championship.  No real problems o the flight, but plenty of problems with hotels.  Calling a hotel and making reservations ain't like it used to be.  If fact, it has been downright problematic.  We've managed to find a pillow for the last two nights, and have reservations at a nice place tomorrow and for the remainder of the trip.

I'm tired.  Running through huge airports ain't no fun.  Whoever assigns gate assignments is a sadistic sonofabitch.

We'll deal with airports again om Monday, but until then, it's Cowboy Fast Draw.

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Going Wheels Up

 Belle and I are traveling commercial air tomorrow morning.  The last time I traveled commercial was in 2007.  We'll get to the airport in plenty of time for the bureaucratic nonsense.

I promised her that I would not do anything to embarrass her.  I love flying.  Give me a wing and an engine, and I'm a happy camper.  I have been on military flights where several hundred of my closest friends walk ed hp the back ramp of an aircraft with weapons slung and sat in web seats.  I've flown on Hueys with my feet hanging out of the door.  I have bought a commercial ticket, walked through a fence gate and climbed stairs into the aircraft.

I deplore the TSA.  Back in the day, I referred to them as Ridge's Retards.  Back when Tom Ridge ran DHS.

I haven't flown commercial since 2007.  Tomorrow should be an adventure.

Gen. Milley Testimony Before Congress

Very interesting testimony this morning in the Senate.


Some are saying that Milley threw Biden under the bus, but I'm not sure that is what happened.  Watch for yourself.

Monday, September 27, 2021

FBI Busts FBI Terror Plot

I used to have a lot of respect for the FBI, but over the past five years, not so much.

When the Babylon Bee starts parodying them, they really need to look at their corporate reputation.  It's shattered and needs t be reformed from top to bottom.


If any FBI agent has any self-respect, it's time to start looking for another agency.  

Headlines

 Evidently, Creepy Joe was misunderstood today

Biden Bizarrely (and Falsely) Claims His $3.5 Trillion Spending Agenda Has a Price Tag of ‘Zero’

What he meant was that it wasn't going to cost him anything.  The net impact on his checkbook is zero, so there is that.

If he had really meant that he intends to spend 3.5 Trillion without costing the government any money, then he would be a demented fool. - - Oh, wait.  He is a demented fool.

Sunday, September 26, 2021

Brisket

It ain't that hard, guys.  Below, a clip from Young Sheldon about brisket recipes.


It ain't hard guys.  Low and slow is the key to a good brisket.  YouTube will help you  with the cooing.  It is my firm belief that all brisket needs is salt and pepper, and 225F for about 12 hours.  You can add more if you like, but all it needs is salt and pepper.

UPDATE FOR TYPO>  Commenter is right.  It should be 225F.  Fixed above, too.  Cooking at 125 would ruin a good piece of meat.

Inconsistencies

 Does anyone see an inconsistency here?

These are supposed to be the "smart people".  Yet, they can't see the inconsistencies in their day-to-day lives.  It is amazing.  

Exit question:  If YOU are fully vaccinated, how does my vax status affect you in any way?


Psaki and Patty

 I've noticed some online wags are comparing Jen Psaki of the White House to Peppermint Patty of the Peanuts cartoon strip.  I have to admit that there is a passing resemblance, but I think that the comparison is unfair.  To Peppermint Patty.  I remember Patty fondly as an honest, thoughtful friend of Charlie Brown.  Whereas, Psaki is a lying, deceitful caricature of a political spokesperson.

That's funny, right there.  But, the comparison is unfair to Patty.

Saturday, September 25, 2021

Crazy

 It's been crazy around here for the past couple of days.  Not bad crazy, just life crazy.

Next week is going to be crazier.  We're leaving or Fallon, NV on Wednesday and we're trying to get life in line so that we can leave on time.  Life is resisting, but I think we have a handle o it.

I'll try to keep you guys updated.

Thursday, September 23, 2021

Who Is In Charge?

You may have heard of this debacle on the news, and I admit, I caught parts of it yesterday.  It seems that our president has ceded authority to an un=elected group of handlers.  What is truly alarming is when Boris Johnson days that he'll take a few questions, and our leader quips "Good Luck".  

Joe knows that he is not going to be allowed to answer questions. Which really puts a tidy exclamation mark on the question of who is running things at the White House.  It surely isn't Joe. He's not in charge, even in his  own office.


This is a sad reflection of his leadership qualities.  He knows that he is not in charge.

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

No, It's Not

 Democrats Agree: Criticizing Our Behavior Is Racist, Sexist, Homophobic

No, it's not.  It's my right.  If you don't want to be called our for dumbass stunts, don't do dumbass things. If you don't want to be in the public eye, become a private citizen.

It is not only our right, it is our duty to criticize elected officials.  To reveal their hypocrisy, to put their deportment in sunshine.  If a person does not want that scrutiny, they should retire into the anonymity of private life.

If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen.


Tuesday, September 21, 2021

An Amazing Aviation Story

This is an amazing aviation story.  The pilot managed to put a Boeing 737 down on a levee near New Orleans after losing both engines in a severe thunderstorm.  The passengers didn't get so much s a hangnail.  The aircraft was completely undamaged, except for two destroyed engines.

Did I mention that the pilot in command had only one eye?  The FAA knew about it, but this guy was the type of guy who didn't let something like only one eye stop him.  

After he landed on the levee, and got the passengers out, and the company showed up with new engines, they realized that an adjacent road was originally a WWII bombe runway, so they towed the plane over, cranked the engines and flew it off.

I recall hearing about this story on the evening news and in the papers.

On The Border

 On the border, down near Del Rio, TX, we're seeing an influx of Haitian folks trying to get into the US.  Over 10,0000 the last I heard.  Most of them camped under the International Bridge.  Governor Abbot has sent a bunch of DPS folks down there to try and stem the flow.

There is liberal outage, I understand, because the Texans brought horses.  Imagine that!  Texas law enforcement on horses.  The photo below is causing especial angst because... I don't know hy.


That trooper ain't whipping anyone.  With his left hand, he is controlling the horse, with his right hand, He is grabbing the miscreant by the shirt-sleeve.  That rope-looking thing between them seems to be loose.  It doesn't appear to the rains.

Here's another photo.

Here we have what appears o be a tranquil border scene, where a bored trooper is twirling the end of a rope,  probably to straighten it prior to coiling.  I've seen cowboys do this thousands of times.  There is nothing threatening about it.  Just two stalwart cops, doing a days work.

If Kamala would like to complain, maybe she needs to get her malfeasant as down to Del Rio and do something productive.  Oh, wait,... I forgot.  She ain't never been productive.

A Lost War: Victor Davis Hanson and H. R. McMaster on Afghanistan’s Past...

It's long, at roughly two hours, but it's a very interesting discussion.

Monday, September 20, 2021

Exotics

 Something interesting from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.  It seems that during recent hurricanes, licensed growers of exotic hoofed species suffered some pen damage, and the critters got out.

I was on a deer stand years ago, and had an emu wander by.  But, in another month or so, deer season will open, and there are exotics inthe woods.  LWF's guidance is clear.  Drag 'em out.


I found this on Facebook originally, but decided to go to the LWF website to double-check.    Sure enough, the notice is here.  Interesting.  Some lucky Louisiana hunter may get an elk this year.

Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee – 9/17/2021

Termite turned me on to this video,via email  It's a full 8 hours, but there is interesting information here.  

From Termite's email: "Here's the entire 8 hr meeting.  The good parts are at 4:15:00  thru 4:28:00." 

There is one doctor from Louisiana telling the FDA panel that the vaccine-hesitant are often better educated on the relevant studies than the vaccinated, and he believes that the entire vaccine situation has become heavily politicized.


I did not listen tot he full eight hours, but I did listen to the few minutes that Termite recommended.

Sunday, September 19, 2021

Problems With Primers

 I'm just going to leave this right here.

From the NRA

Grifters and Grafters

 Remember last week, that picture of AOC in her fancy designer dress that said "Tax the Rich"?  At the Met Gala?  That powerful message,speaking truth to power?  Yeah that one.

As it turns out, that designer, the gal who designed the dress and hosted AOC at the party, doesn't believe  a word of it.

The ‘Tax the Rich’ dress designer whom @AOC  went to the Met Gala with:

• Owes $103,220 in back taxes
• Received $41,666 in PPP (Payroll Protection Program)
• Has ‘legions’ of unpaid interns
• Owes $62,722 in workers comp
• Still found $250,000 for a table at the Met Gala

The hypocrisy is stunning.  What the dress should have said was "Tax Other People"

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy

 It's a great question to ponder on a Saturday morning.  If you've heard of Munchausen by Proxy, you know that it is a mental issue that causes cargiers to hurt those under their care.  It's a horrible practice.

But suppose, just suppose, that some folks are practicing Munchausen's by Proxy on a societal scale.  That might explain a lot of what we have seen in the last 18 months.

The literature on Munchausen by Proxy Syndrome states that the condition is most often discovered in people responsible for family members (or sometimes pets).

But what if it were to affect individuals responsible for large numbers of people? What if it were to affect “experts” responsible for policies to protect the public from disasters, pandemics, and the like?

I started asking this question because of something I’ve noticed when I watch “experts” on television talk about disasters.

The author linked above makes an interesting argument.   The "experts" have certainly gained a lot of attention and notoriety for themselves.  Who knew who Anthony Fauci was, two years ago.  Not many of us.

My counter to her argument is that if the "experts" are exhibiting something like Munchausens by Proxy, than many of the afflicted, who blindly follow their advise, may also be exhibiting symptoms of Stockholm Syndrome.  We have to be careful.

Friday, September 17, 2021

TSA Approved Locks

 We're planning a trip in late September to the Reno, NV area for a big shooting competition.

We're flying commercially, the first time since 2009.  It was a horrid experience then, and this time we're flying with firearms, which lends itself to a whole new set of challenges and bureaucratic requirements. I have done my homework and believe that I have what I need.

I bought some "TSA approved locks" and if I had to describe them with one word, that word would be "chickenshit".  I was once responsible for security of weapons, and I know what good padlocks look like.  These are not those.  If the TSA is counting on these little locks to secure my firearms, then we are both delusional.

What am I missing?

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Creepy Joe Tries To Change the Subject

 Creepy Joe, our current incompetent president was on the air an hour of so ago, talking about his new economic plan.  He's going to save us all.

However, anyone who has been in a grocery store knows that prices are up. Grocery prices to rise another 3% before the end of year, Kroger warns with cost of beef already up 14% and pork 12% since December

He seemed confused that energy prices are up too. Maybe, just maybe, his killing of pipelines and his hold on leases in the Gulf have something to do with that.  I'm just noticing.

Overseas, it seems like our influence is waning.  Situation in Indo-Pacific 'deteriorating,' says Australian defense minister.  I wonder what Milley thinks of that?  Now that both he and his boss are laughing-stocks, maybe it's time for a new team in both State and the Pentagon.

Speaking of Milley and Blinken, maybe they need to turn their eyes back to the 'stan.  There's A Hostage Crisis in Afghanistan, and We're Not Talking About It.

This country is going to hell in a handbasket.  It's Joe Biden's fault, it all happened on his watch  He desperately wants to change the subject, but we shouldn't let him.

Thursday Update

 It's a weird news cycle.  

There is this pop-culture star, Nicki Minaj, who says that people should resist bullying, pray about it, and do your research about the vaccine.  I admit that I don't know anything about her, but that seems like a totally responsible message.  Of course, she is catching flak over it.  That's a shame, it sounds like a responsible message.

General Milley is still in the news.  Details of his malfeasance continue to leak out, and evidently, President Biden is pleased with his job performance.

In local news, we're supposed to have a rodeo practice at the church tonite, and I'm checking Facebook often to see if that has been cancelled.  After three days of rain, I cannot imagine that the arena is anything hut a mud hole.  UPDATE** It's cancelled.  Now, I wonder about the rodeo tomorrow night?

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Did Milley Over-Step?

 The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs is the highest ranking military officer in the United States.  He answers to the Secretary of Defense.  His duties are wide-ranging.

Bob Woodward has written a book that claims that Milley did things that, while they might not amount to treason under the Constitution, certainly may result in criminal referrals under the US Code.

And, according to at least one source, certain officers who work for Milley are willing to testify under oath against him.

This story is breaking, and I have no idea whether any of it is true.  It is certainly salacious, and one wonders first about the veracity of the original allegation, secondly about the purported leak from the White House, and third abut why all this is coming to light right now?

Is Milley on the way out?  Most Chairmen are.  It is the highest raking post in the US military.  There is no where else to go.  Generally, retirement follows.  Yet, one might wonder why these stories are breaking now?

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Cajun Stroganoff

 I'm not sure what this is, so I'm going with Cajun Stroganoff.  On a rainy Tuesday, I needed something filling and easy to fix for lunch.



Ingredients:

1.5 lbs 80/20 ground beef
Trinity (onion, bell pepper, celery, chopped fine)
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
1 pint Half and Half
1 can RoTel, drained
1 pound Velveeta cheese
1 pound egg noodles
Salt, pepper, garlic powder

Cook It!

In a Dutch oven, sauté the trinity and brown the ground beef. Drain if necessary.  Add salt, pepper, garlic powder to taste.  Add the cream of mushroom soup, the half and half, and the RoTel tomatoes.  Cut the velveeta into cubes and stir it into the mix.

Boil the egg noodles in salted water.  When done, drain and add to the mix. Serve with garlic bread.  Enjoy.

Empty Beds

 There is an axiom in the hotel business that an empty bed is a revenue opportunity that is lost forever.  To have a successful hotel, you need guests in the beds.  It's a fairly simple concept.

Hospitals are the same.  Empty beds mean a lost revenue opportunity.  While that may seem crass and profit-driven, it's the truth.  As much as I admire physicians and nurses, along with all the support staff  that make a hospital run, it is simple economics that if your hospital is empty, you don't need all those doctors, nurses and support staff on the payroll.  Empty beds is a lost revenue opportunity.

During the current Covid pandemic, we have come to depend on Covid hospitalizations as a valuable metric of success.  As hospitalizations rise and fall, we measure success.  However, an article in The Atlantic suggests that this metric is not as reliable as we might like it to be.

Researchers have tried to get at similar questions before. For two separate studies published in May, doctors in California read through several hundred charts of pediatric patients, one by one, to figure out why, exactly, each COVID-positive child had been admitted to the hospital. Did they need treatment for COVID, or was there some other reason for admission, like cancer treatment or a psychiatric episode, and the COVID diagnosis was merely incidental? According to the researchers, 40 to 45 percent of the hospitalizations that they examined were for patients in the latter group.

So, a patient goes to the hospital for a routine colonoscopy, and during the intake, is found to be Covid positive.  That's good to know, but that patient suddenly becomes a Covid patient.  The patient is later admitted.  So, the question becomes: was the patient admitted for colon, or Covid?  That is a legitimate question.

Our big regional hospital here shows Covid hospitalizations every day, with a count of vaccinated and un-vaccinated.  They give no other breakdown on the numbers,and as a regional medical center, they are known to accept patients from other hospitals.  I've also noticed that their numbers tend to hover between 50-70 Covid patients.

I'm not pointing fingers here, and certainly not ascribing any nefarious intent.  I'm simply highlighting what other folks have noticed.

Monday, September 13, 2021

Kamala Barks

 It seems that Kamala Harris continues to expose her ignorance.  


Okay, Dr. Harris, (I assume you are a doctor, you keep giving medical advice), just exactly how does someone else getting the jab protect me?  I'm already vaccinated.  Why should I ask someone else to protect me when I am alrady vaccinated and perfectly capable of protecting myself?

And, if the vax status is so important, why aren't you vaxxing everyone who comes across the southern border?  You are the border czar.  Your vaccine messaging is totally inconsistent and un-scientific.  Please go back into hiding and leave us alone.

Edwards Declares Emergency

 Our petty tyrant governor, John Bel Edwards has declared an emergency in advance of the presumed impacts of tropical storm Nicholas.  I'm sure that the declaration is tied to federal money, and our governor loves federal money.  Loves it so much that Louisiana has been in a state of  emergency for one thing or another since March of 2020.  If it isn't a weather emergency, it is a public health emergency.  

God love him, he must enjoying declaring emergencies, he does it so much.  He ought to just go ahead and declare Louisiana a general disaster until the end of his term.

Now, It's Nicholas

 It appears that a tropical system in the Gulf we have been watching has now become Tropical Storm Nicholas, the fourteenth named storm this year.  It may or may not become a hurricane, but all indications are that it is going to be a rain-maker.  Some models show as much as 25 inches in some unlucky localities..


It looks like it is mainly going to affect south Texas, but it is supposed to slide into Louisiana as a depression later this week.  We're mainly on the "wet" side of the storm, so we are going to get rain for a couple of days before it dissipates.

Sunday, September 12, 2021

CC: Silent Wings - The American Glider Pilots of WW II

Glider troops during WWII.  Something that few know about and most don't consider.  But, they were an extremely useful and a big part of delivering troops to the battlefield.

It's almost two hours, so get a cup of coffee or another nice beverage.

Red Beans

 Belle and I were looking for something easy and filling and settled on Red Beans.  It's an old familiar Southern recipe, and we have it down to a science.  This is the slow-cooker version and takes about 12 hours, but while the cook time is long, the prep and work time is short.


Take a pound of dry red beans, a pound of good sausage (your choice), some salt, and six cups of water.

Rinse and sort the beans.  By "sorting", I mean to stir then with your fingers as you rinse them, and look for stray bits of gravel. Cut your sausage into bite-sized and them put beans, sausage, and water into your slow cooker.  Put it on low, and ignore it for 12 hours.  Stir it occasionally, if you must.

I put these beans on last night at 7:00 and went to bed.  After coffee this morning I gave them a stir.  In a couple of hours, we'll make a pot of rice and some cornbread.

This is a basic recipe.  You can add to it, if you like.  Chop an onion, maybe.  Or add garlic.  Whatever you like, they are your beans.  Or, you can do this with pinto beans, or white beans.  Add ham instead of sausage.  This is just about as basic as it comes.

#joeisajoke

It seems to be an anthem.  At college football stadiums around the country, the stands erupt with a chant indicating that our president is not as popular as he might like to think.

According to several sources, such chants erupted at Tennessee, Virginia Tech, Alabama, Louisiana State and others.

Saturday, September 11, 2021

Inflation Under Control

 According to Jen Psaki, inflation is under control.

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Press Secretary Jen Psaki took time during today’s briefing to address worries about inflation, comforting Americans with the news that prices are totally under control – outside of the things necessary to live.

Yeah, except for things like food, gasoline, electricity,  I was shocked yesterday to see that some (not premium) bacon was almost $10.99 per pound, at the discount grocer where I often shop. 

Instapundit weighs in:

Is it the Bee? Or the New York Times? Admit it, no one can tell anymore.

Heh!  Indeed.  At least the Babylon Bee is honest enough to forewarn the reader that it is a parody site.  The New York Times?  Not so much.

Friday, September 10, 2021

Sleepy Joe Speaks

 While I was flipping burgers yesterday for a church function, I understand that Sleepy Joe decided to listen to his puppet masters impose a sweeping mandate on the American people. One that he opposed just eight months ago.  From the article:

“No, I don’t think it should be mandatory. I wouldn’t demand it be mandatory,” Biden said of vaccines. “But I would do everything in my power — just like I don’t think masks have to be made mandatory nationwide — I will do everything in my power as president of the United States to encourage people to do the right thing. And when they do it, demonstrate that it matters.”

Today, of course, he wants to impose vaccine mandates on every employer who has 100 or more employees.

It's outrageous,and I suspect that lots of people will oppose it.  It's probably also unconstitutional.

Belle, who works for a home health company, believes that it is an over-reach.  She is a registered nurse and says that everyone has the right to decline medical treatment.  That right to decline treatment certainly extends to inoculations of any kind. 

I think that Biden's puppet masters desperately want to distract us from the continuing crisis of leaving Americans behind enemy lines and will do anything to distract the 24-hour news cycle.  Joe Biden is a cynical politician who has evil puppet masters pulling his strings.  His presidency is a slow-moving train wreck.

Thursday, September 09, 2021

Chipman Is Out

 Fox News is reporting that the White House has withdrawn the name of David Chipman as their nomie for ATFE director

The White House is withdrawing the nomination of David Chipman to run the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco (ATF) and Firearms, Fox News has confirmed.

That is good news.  Although I suspect that whoever they next nominate will share many of the views that Chipman held. 

Our State Department

 Our State Department is filled with un-serious people.  Nothing is more important to them tan left-wing ideology, and they don't seem to care that they have become a laughing-stock.  It is bad enough that they left Americans behind in Afghanistan, but now they are criticizing the new Taliban government for not being inclusive.

A State Department spokesperson said in a statement shared with The Hill that although the Taliban “has presented this as a caretaker cabinet,” the U.S. “will judge the Taliban by its actions, not words.” 

“We have made clear our expectation that the Afghan people deserve an inclusive government,” the spokesperson added. 

I had to check and make sure that I was not reading a Babylon Bee article.  That statement above reeks of lunacy, and it appears that our State Department has devolved into caricature.

So, a quick note to the idiots in the State Department.  The Taliban beat you on the field of battle, and they really don't care what you think.  The Taliban believes that the Biden State Department is a paper tiger, undeserving of consideration.  They would just as soon behead you and sell your women into slavery than to consider your expectations.  They won, and you let them win.

Wednesday, September 08, 2021

The Nation's Paper of Record

 The nations paper of record says that we might need a new variant of the Covid disease to distract American from the Afghanistan disaster.

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Officials at the CDC said today that the surprising virulence and persistence of Afghanistan news may require a whole new COVID variant to distract the country from it.

The Babylon Bee has been fairly accurate in their prognostications lately.  I don't put anything past Fauci and crew when it comes to creating disaster for the American people.

Benefits Expired?

 So, your federal unemployment benefits expired?  Too bad, go get a job.

I heard on the radio today that there are 11 million jobs in the US looking for workers.  Go get a job.

I know one outfit that was paying $11/hr for unskilled workers, back in July.  Now, in September, they're paying $9/hr.  If you wanted that $11/hr job, you should have come to work in July.

If you are unemployed, you are not a victim.  Go get a job.  

Young Men and College

 Folks are starting to notice that enrollment of young men is dropping in college.  For example, this article.

There are a variety of reasons, but I happen to know three young men who dropped out of college this past year.  All graduates of the high school class of 2020.  All three went to the first year, 0-21, and alll stayed home for the fall semester of 21.  Their reasoning is as follows.

1.  Covid sucks.  Covid on a college campus really sucks.  They can take classes online, but do it from home and save the cost of dorms and feeding plans.

2.  Student debt sucks.  Even with a variety of scholarships, they were going in the hole.  They didn't want to get out of college awash in debt.

So, they made other plans.

Young Man 1 is in the Guard, working full time and taking classes online.  He's putting money in the bank.

Young Man 2 is working at a small manufacturing concern.  Starting at the bottom, learning to be a tool-and-die maker.  He's putting money in the bank, trying to figure out what his career will be.

Young Man 3 is doing community college and working part time.  He will figure it out as well, and land on his feet.

These three guys are doing fine.  But, they are not paying for an over-priced college education.

What Fresh Hell?

 What fresh hell is this?  Evidently there is something called a "telephone pregnancy termination".

Governor Kristi Noem of South Dakota signed an executive order banning the procedure.

But I can't even figure out.... it sounds like pure evil.

Tuesday, September 07, 2021

Glenn Beck Explains Who Stopped Afghan Refugees From Leaving | Pat Gray ...

Glen Beck, whatever else you may think about him, has been "over there", doing the work, getting people out.  He has a unique perspective.

Louisiana Covid Hospitalizations Decline

 It appears that the hospitalization rate in Louisiana is declining.  That is good news.  Despite the best efforts of Governor Edwards to keep us under his tyrannical thumb, the Covid count is getting smaller.

NEW ORLEANS — The number of COVID-19 hospitalizations in Louisiana continues to decline after reaching record-setting levels in mid-August.

According to the Louisiana Department of Health, there were 2,003 COVID-19 positive patients hospitalized across the state on Monday. That is down from the 3,022 reported on Aug. 17. The LDH said that 90 percent of those hospitalized were unvaccinated. 

Edwards might claim that is mask mandate helped to slow the spread, but he's fooling himself.  I haven't sen a mask worn in weeks.  Almost universally, people are ignoring the mandate If anything slowed the spread, it was the natural bell-curve of a standard distribution.  In the end of this pandemic, we may well learn that old-fashioned math and the way that numbers work were as much at play as anything else.

The Biden Presidency Is A Disaster

 The American presidency can put up with a lot of things, but we can't put up with a lot of things all at once without noticing that there seems to be a lack of adult leadership.

If the border were the only crisis we faced, we might tend to give the benefit of the doubt.

If our military leadership could point to actual successes, we might feel a little better about some domestic challenges.

If our public health professionals had a coherent, consistent message on Covid, and had not turned this pandemic into a political weapon, we might cut them some slack when we learned new things about this disease.

If our economy was strong, if our cities were not awash in crime, then we might be optimistic about solving some of the other problems that seem to plague us.

But none of these things are being handled under the Biden presidency.  The military leadership is morally bankrupt, leaving Americans to the mercies of a fanatical foe, the economy is sputtering, the pandemic still rages, and the border is a damn mess. Congress is run by juveniles, and Biden's appointees seem only to be interested in a 24-hour news cycle.

This country is in a helluva mess.

Monday, September 06, 2021

Quothe For Truth

 Been there, done that.



Condoleezza Rice

Condoleeza Rice talks about 9/11 and our involvement in Afghanistan.  I always liked her, and when friends ask me if I'd ever vote for a black woman for President, she is the person I name.  Of course, she has enough sense not to run for President.


Update** Misspelling fixed.  Thanks!

Sunday, September 05, 2021

The M219 Machine GUn

 The M219 machine gun is a (sort-of) blast from the past.  I say (sort of) because I remember it as a gun that never really ran.

The M219 was a derivation of the M73 machine gun.  It was a n air-cooled, recoil operated machine gun that fired the linked 7.62 NATO cartridge.  It was designed to be coaxially mounted in armored vehicles, including the M60 series tanks, the M551 Sheridan ACAV, and the Engineers M728 CEV.


Oh, what a turd this little gun was.  A coaxially mounted mounted machine gun is mounted beside the main gun of an armored vehicle, and is linked mechanically to the main gun so that it points along the same axis as the main gun.  The tank gunner controls the coax from his position in the vehicle.

This little gun was supposed to be a product improvement of the M73 gun, but seemed to take all the design flaws of the M73 and amplified them. Perhaps the ones I was using were worn out (this was during the Carter years) but the gun just never seemed to work.  Sometimes it would fire a whole belt, sometimes it would fire single-shot, and sometimes it wouldn't fire at all.

I got out of tanks in 1977, assigned to push troops in the 4th Brigade at Knox.  Thence to a variety of staff positions.  When I got back to Knox in the mid 80s for the Advanced Course, the Army had scrapped the 219 in favor of FNs new M240 machine gun.  The M240 was a delightful little weapon that could be mounted as a coax, or dismounted and used in other roles.  

M240 mounted in M1 Abrams

The M240 is still in use today, and by all accounts is a fine machine gun.  I thought it was a huge improvement on the M219, if for no other reason that it fired when the gunner asked it to fire.

The M85 Machine Gun

 The M85 machine gun was well-known by soldiers of my generation, especially tankers who used it in the M60 series tanks.  It was a belt fed, recoil operated heavy machine gun that fired the .50 BMG cartridge.  It was lighter than the M2, weighing 65 pounds.


It mounted in the command cupola of the M60 series tanks and was considered the commander's weapon.  It used a push-through belt, unlike the pull-through link belt used by the M2. The gun did not have the familiar butterfly trigger of the M2, but fired either by pulling a handle on a chain, or by a solenoid attached to the elevation handle.

The M85 didn't make the jump to the newer M1.  The Army said that it was unreliable and maintenance-heavy.  Although I never had any issues with the gun.  The ones I used ran fine.  The commander's cupola had an optical sight for the gun, but most of us simply stick our head out of the hatch and watched the tracers 

In my opinion, the M85 had two major drawbacks.  First, it used a link system that was not compatible with the M2 ammo system.  Same cartridge, different links, so the crew had to be sure that they were drawing the appropriate ammo from the ammo point.  Second, it was a gun designed to be mounted in a vehicle.  It simply did not have the versatility of the familiar M2 Browning.

The ones I used ran good.  If the tank commander took the time to align the gun  with the optical sight, it was very accurate, but most of us simply watched the tracers.

I looked for a YouTube video of the M85, but can't seem to find one. It was pretty much out of service before YouTube was invented.

Saturday, September 04, 2021

Nursing Shortage

 My love, Belle, is a registered nurse.  We know several registered nurses.  There is a shortage of registered nurses in the US, and a capable, hard-working nurse is a God-send to any organization.  They command a good salary and are indispensable to our health care system.

And, some organizations are firing nurses who refuse to get the Covid vaccine.

That is short-sighted.  And, it's probably not going to hurt the nurses.  There is another job, just down the street.

Spider Lily

 While mowing this morning, I found a white spider lily near the fence.


I have several of these planted near the fence, and I mowed around it, to let those bulbs flower.  Around the oak tree in the front yard, I have several of the red variety.  They signal the coming of autumn, and while I know that we still have hot weather in September, they are a harbinger of cooler temperatures.

Friday, September 03, 2021

Anvil 0103: M60 "Pig" maintenance, description of operation

Mark Novak goes down the rabbit hole on the M60, affectionately known as "the pig" to my generation of GIs.  It was the light machine gun of the US Army during Vietnam, and when I got in service in '72, and when I went to Desert Storm in 1990, and when I retired in 98 we still had these in the arms room.  The Wiki page says that they are still in service.


The next time I see grandson Quinton, I'll have to ask if he's trained on these old guns.

Folk Medicine

 Folk medicine isn't witchcraft.  It is a compilation of acquired knowledge that seems to work, most of the time.  Like all medicine, it doesn't work 100% of the tie, but it seems to work most of the time.

Like, for instance, willow bark is a great treatment for curing a headache.  Chewing a twig with the green bark releases a pain-killer that works like aspirin.  In some rural areas of the South,  the common willow tree is known as a "headache tree".

Like for instance, crushing an aloe vera leaf releases a gel that is wonderful for light burns, like sunburn.

Like, for instance, the mucus between the stalk and leaf of the common cattail is a powerful numbing agent.

None of these folk remedies are FDA approved.  That doesn't make them any less effective.  They are simply not approved treatments.

Another common remedy which is in the news is the use of ivermectin as a treatment for Covid-19.  It's not FDA approved, but anecdotal evidence seems to indicate that it works.  Ivermectin is commonly available from animal supply stores.  It's apple-flavored, and the preferred treatment seems to be to smear it on a Chips Ahoy cookie  Read the label for dosing information, which is by weight.

Famously, Joe Rogan was recently diagnosed with Covid, and used ivermectin as part of a broad treatment.  Of course, the left is going crazy.  It's not FDA approved. I know a handful of other people ho have used the same regime as part of their Covid battle.  I don't know if it works or not, but you won't be wormy.

The larger idea is that each of us is responsible for our own health care.  Hopefully, in consultation with your physician.  But, if someone wants to take a worm medicine to treat Covid, it's okay with me.  At least they won't be wormy, and there is some evidence to support their decision.

Thursday, September 02, 2021

Ida Claims More Victims

 Hurricane Ida, whether she is listed today as post-tropical, or a depression, is wreaking havoc in the Northeast, as Fox News reports:

Eight people were confirmed dead in New York City, including a 2-year-old boy, a 48-year-old female and a 50-year-old man who were all found inside a home in the Jamaica neighborhood of Queens as a result of the severe weather. In New Jersey, a 70-year-old man was reported dead and a 19-year-old man was found dead in Maryland.

I'm sure that Disaster Declarations will soon follow.  We'll add those people to the prayer list tonight at services. 

The Taliban's Arsenal

 According to several reports, the Biden administration is scrubbing lists of equipment that it provided to the Afghan Army.  Much of this equipment fell into the hands of the Taliban, providing them a windfall of military goodies.

Forbes reports that the State Department is telling other federal agencies to scrub their websites of lists of weapons the U.S. provided the Afghan military over the years.

So, to protect the record, it may be useful to store this little graphic right here.


 That is a pretty good haul.  But, as it turns out, the US forces who departed the Kabul airport did destroy some equipment before departing. It seems that the Taliban is angry that the US destroyed their "national assets".

The Taliban expressed their anger at the US for destroying military equipment before their withdrawal from Afghanistan saying Americans destroyed their “national assets”.

National assets, huh?  That's rich.

Wednesday, September 01, 2021

Impeachment is a Pipe Dream

 Mitch McConnell says that no one is impeaching Biden over Afghanistan.  And, he's right.  It's a pipe dream, and the Republicans should get over it.

1.  They don't have the votes in the House.  Pelosi will never let it get that far.

2.  They don't have the votes in the Senate.  It takes 67 votes to convict, and if anyone thinks that they can get to 67, they are dreaming.  Ain't gonna happen.

Republicans need to concentrate on what will increase their chances of taking both the House and the Senate in 2022.  Nothing else matters.

Carbon Monoxide is a SILENT KILLER

Generators are life-saving devices under conditions where the grid goes down,  Either hurricane or ice storm

But, generators accounted for over half the deaths associated with Hurricane Laura last year.  

Please, people, twenty (20) feet from the house, not under cover.  Not in your garage or patio, certainly not in the living room.  

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Biden Continues Gun Push

 While simultaneously wanting to disarm Americans,he arms the Taliban.  Biden''s gun policy is absolutely incoherent.  And, now, he is banning the import of Russian ammunition.

That will do nothing to dissuade the Russians, and has enraged American gun enthusiasts.

Biden should be laser-focused on the borer, the Covid pandeic, and the American economy.  Those three items are much more important than restircintg the right of Americans to buy Russian ammo.

Monday, August 30, 2021

I Wonder What's Left?

Cocodrie is a community in southeast Louisiana, south of Houma.  Down in the bayou country.  It's beautiful and inhabited by good people.  And, I wonder if it's there any more.  I'm sure that Laura didn't do it any favors.

Thirty years ago, I had a buddy, Charlie (Cholly), who lived on Bayou DuLarge, in that area.  The road in front of his house was asphalt, but just below his house, it turned into an oyster-sell road.  There isn't much gravel in south Louisiana, but there is a lot of oyster shell.   Down that road a bit, a big pile of oyster shell marked the end of the road.  Below that was marsh, and the Gulf.


I wonder what's left down there today?  My heart bleeds for south Louisiana.

Doing Fine

 I'm out in the shop, cleaning brass.  The tumbler is rattling in the background, and I thought I'd pull up the weather page to see what's happening.  Locally, we're under a misting rain, with winds out of the  NW at 10, gusting to 20.  Not a big deal.


That's the radar image, and we're fine.  This is still a huge storm, and lots of people are hurting, but we are counting our blessings.  Grandson Quinton is an E-4  in the Guard, and he was activated on Saturday.  He's somewhere in that mess we haven't heard from him since last night.  His unit hunkered down in a school-house and they will be doing relief work, helping evacuees and distributing food and water until the local authorities can stand up their own efforts.  From all reports, they have no cell service, but I'm sure that his leadership is taking care of him.

No Problem.

 It looks like Ida missed us, and after last year's two direct hits, I"m okay with that.  While most of southeast Louisiana is in the dark this morning, awaiting daylight to start assessing the damage, we here in central Louisiana are okay.

Belle keeps a box of tissue on a table on the patio, and that is normally the first thing to leave during a storm.  When I awoke this morning and went outside, the tissue was still there on the table.  We never lost power and the breeze is out of the north.  

While we're okay, a great number of our neighbors in southeast Louisiana are not.  We will start learning the scope of the disaster after the sun comes up, but this was a big, slow-moving storm that kept hurricane status for over 12 hours after it came ashore.  We will learn more as the day progresses.

PawPaw's acre is okay, and I thnk God for that.  But when I talk with Him today, I'll ask Him to today, I'll ask Hi to look out for the people in southeast Louisiana and Mississippi.

Sunday, August 29, 2021

Hurricane Ida near category 5 strength

I don't know if it is a Cat 5 yet, and it wobbled a bit, inching the track closer to the New Orleans metro area.  That's bad news for NOLA, but better news for PawPaw.  I do't wish this on anyone, but I don't wish it om me either.  I'll take the good news when I can get it.


I'll keep checking he updates all day long.

Saturday, August 28, 2021

Prepping Saturday

 The club shot this morning, and we finished up about 2:00.  Then I ran to the grocers to pick up some groceries for the next couple of days.  Hurricane Ida comes in tomorrow afternoon, and we're okay.

All indications are that we are going to be on the west side of the storm, and that is the best place to be.  Of course, they all wobble just before landfall, so we still have to be aware, but I think my little acre is in pretty good shape.  We may be incognito for a day or so, but in no peril.

I'll be checking the track and the warning cone until it hits, but I really don't expect any surprises.

Friday, August 27, 2021

Remembering Katrina

 Other folks have mentioned that Hurricane Katrina blew through on August 29, 2005, almost exactly 16 years ago.  A little recap:  After the eye of the storm passed to the northeast, (the weak side), New Orleans suffered a breach of the levee system, effectively drowning ta major portion of the city.  The flood pumps didn't work, the Democrat mayor of the city failed to mobilize the city's buses, and many people were left stranded on roofs, many people drowned.  The city devolved into chaos and anarchy.

New Orleans in September 2005 was probably the last time that militias took control of neighborhoods to prevent looting.  New Orleans required major assistance from the Federal govt, the state govt, other local police departments.  After the debacle had settled down, the mayor went to prison for corruption.  His name was Ray Nagin,

Major portions of New Orleans sit below sea level.  The main tourist area, the French Quarter sits below the level of the Mississippi River that flows past it.  New Orleans is a disaster waiting on the proper set of conditions.

The current mayor, Latoya (the destroyer) Cantrell makes Ray Nagin lok like a choir boy.  She, however, has no excuse, because the history of the city is one where the problems during Katrina were well documented.  I hope that the pumps work, and that she knows where the keys to all the buses are.  Over the next 24 hours, lots of mayors and parish officials will start issuing evacuation orders, and Latoya should understand that this time,the city will be on the east (the strong side) of the storm, if not in the eye of it.

Things may get real interesting in Ne Orleans over the next 72 hours.

The Unfolding Storm

 Waking this morning, drinking coffee, our eyes are focused on two storms, one in the Afghan capitol and one soon to enter the Gulf.  While the storm in Afghanistan is metaphorical, the one in the Gulf is physical.

We all know by now that yesterday was the deadliest day for American forces in a decade.  I mourn the loss, but probably the greatest revelation from yesterdays new is that US officials have given a list of Americans and Afghan allies to the Taliban.  I am astounded.  This seems like treason.  The idea makes me numb with shock.

Turning to the tropical system, it looks like Tropical Storm Ida will run into the western edge of Cuba, then enter the Gulf later today.  There will be wobbles, but it looks like Ida will hit the Louisiana coast sometime late Sunday as a Cat 2 or 3 hurricane.  Right now, the wobbles seem to be trending to the east, but it is way to early to know for certain.  I've seen these things wobble significantly in the last hours before landfall.

According to KFLY Meteorologist Trevor Sonnier:

National Hurricane Center now calling for a 115 mph major hurricane to make landfall across southeastern or south-central Louisiana by Sunday night or Monday morning, depending on how far west Ida gets. A southeast Louisiana landfall would happen quicker, while a Vermilion Bay landfall would be delayed about 6-8 hours. Subtle differences of 30-40 miles will make a difference for Acadiana at this point. Eastern-most model solutions would put Acadiana in a better spot versus the further west Vermilion Bay solutions, which would put Acadiana more in the crosshairs. Unfortunately, these minor differences are settled by slight angle changes in track or wobbles, which cannot be determined until the storm is very close to landfall.


It's time to check the oil in the generator.  I think I have sufficient fuel.  All the gas cans are full, and I have several full bottles of butane.