Tuesday, January 31, 2017

That Evidence of Trump's Poorly Hidden Anti-Muslim Bias

The list of countries on the limited entry list?  It turns out that they were part of a bill Obama signed.  Snopes of course calls this "mixed" because that Obama-signed bill didn't have travel restrictions, but that's from where Trump's list came.
WHAT'S TRUE: The "seven countries" targeted by President Trump's 27 January 2017 executive order pertaining to immigration were not mentioned by name and instead originated with "countr[ies] or area[s] of concern" first identified in the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act of 2015 (expanded to all seven countries "of concern" in February 2016).

Acting Attorney General Refuses to Defend Trump's Executive Order in Courts

Sally Yates, a holdover from the Obama Department of Injustice is refusing to defend the refugee executive order.  The job of DOJ and the Attorney-General is to defend the laws--even if they find them offensive.  The job of the courts is to decide if they are constitutional.

Revenge of the Keyfinder

I put keyfinders on all the keys.  The TrailBlazer fob and key, which is the easiest and cheapest to replace disappeared, and its keyfinder is not beeping.  I've been through the entire house, all three cars, and nothing.  Is there a black hole entrance in the house that I never noticed during building?

Weird Dream: Viking Delivery

ScopeRoller makes a surprising number of sales outside the U.S.  I ship U.S. Post Office Priority Mail.  To Europe and Down Under, the Medium Flat Rate box is $66.20.  A few customers have cringed at the cost, but USPS no longer has a parcel post service; UPS and FedEx are even more expensive than Priority Mail.

Last night's dream: Viking delivery!  Unemployed Vikings delivering ScopeRoller products across the world!  (Keep your daughters and livestock inside if you order ScopeRoller.)

Monday, January 30, 2017

How Did This Sneak Through Hollyweird? Heroism and Duty

This summer

A Good Extreme Step

1/30/17 Yahoo News:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump signed an order on Monday that will seek to dramatically pare back federal regulations by requiring agencies to cut two existing regulations for every new rule introduced.
I'm skeptical this always makes sense, but I am sure there are many obsolete regulations that can be repealed with no loss of safety.  I remember the sign of progress in the Reagan Administration was cutting new regulations from 900 pages per day to 600.

That Mosque Mass Murder

The left was desperately hoping they could blame Trump.  1/29/17 CBC News:
The two men arrested following the deadly shooting at a Quebec City mosque Sunday night have been identified as Alexandre Bissonnette and Mohamed Khadir, Radio-Canada has learned....
A witness who asked to remain anonymous told Radio-Canada that two masked individuals entered the mosque. 
"It seemed to me that they had a Québécois accent. They started to fire, and as they shot, they yelled, 'Allahu akbar!' The bullets hit people that were praying. People who were praying lost their lives. A bullet passed right over my head."
Perhaps an attack for not being sufficiently radical?

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Phossy Jaw

I am watching Ripper Street, a grim show about Victorian police work in the East End of London.  Tonight's episode was centered on "phossy jaw," a disfiguring poisoning of female match workers caused by exposure to white phosphorous (hence the name).  Many years ago, a Salvation Army officer told me that the Army played a big part in ending phossy jaw.  I could never find anything about that, but Google's continuing digitizing of books has paid off.  D.E.C. Corbridge, Phosphorus: Chemistry, Biochemistry and Technology, Sixth Edition describes how the Salvation Army set up match factories in London using a new safer technology, competing with "the vested interests" and to improve wages for the workers.  Talk about putting your faith in action!

Back Injury Good News

It used to demand acetaminophen every five hours.  Now 10-12 hours between doses.

Recently Read

Simon Winchester The Men Who United the States: America's Explorers, Inventors, Eccentrics, and Mavericks and the Creation of One Nation, Indivisible.

I first ran into Winchester's writing with The Professor and the Madman about an American Army officer, confined to an English mental hospital for murder caused by his mental illness.  He played a major role in creating the Oxford English Dictionary, the largest contributor, I believe.  His status he kept secret from the editors so well that they did not understand his unwillingness to come to its unveiling.

Winchester has since immigrated and become a U.S. citizen.  This is his love letter to his new country, examining how various "explorers, inventors, eccentrics, and mavericks" as the subtitle describes them, created this nation.  The organizational scheme is wood, beneath the Earth, water, fire, and metal.  Lewis & Clark, steamships, mining, railroads, telephones, and electronics.  Winchester has been visiting the U.S. for decades and often sprinkles in heartwarming stories of his new nation into the history.  While visiting Montana as part of the Lewis & Clark story, he met repeated selfless and generous actions excused by the locals as "This is Montana."

It is informative (even for me).  My only gripe is his chapter on how broadcasting helped to make us one nation, until cable broke down the old CBS/NBC/ABC dominance.  He then launches into praise of National Propaganda Radio as the only real hope for what he would call unity, and I would call the left's master narrative to suppress diversity that isn't part of the left's triumvirate of race, class, and gender..

Stephen King End of Watch.  I don't read a lot of fiction, but when I do, it is often Stephen King, in spite of his left-wing tendencies and assumptions.  This is one of those supernatural (or maybe not: is telekinesis and mind control supernatural?) tales that within the needed suspension of belief, makes perfect sense.  A mass murderer never goes to trial because just before murdering hundreds, if not thousands of teens at a concert, one of the good guys bashes in his skull with a sock full of change, rendering him incapable of trial and apparently anything else, until a doctor engages in unauthorized drug testing, producing dangerous powers in this monster, which a terminally ill retired police detective must prevent from causing computer game-induced mass suicide (those he missed at the concert).  Like all of King's novels, the characters are so well drawn that all seem quite alive.  And being King, it is a powerful piece of storytelling with lots of, "I can see this part of it."

There is a saying that you should never write fiction about something with which you don't have experience: Don't write novels about teaching high school if you haven't done so.  False knowledge shows through.  Here King's personal tragedies show through: the misery of physical therapy after a severe accident.  (No, the van that ran him over a few years ago wasn't named "Christine.")  A previos King novel, Duma Key involved several survivors of severe cranial injuries which opens them up to supernatural control, and I suspect its setting in Florida means King has a winter house there.  End of Watch involves a man approaching death by old age related maladies.  King is old enough that he is probably confronting these same concerns.  Having read The Stand, which King described as a story of "dark Christianity" (meaning a positively Zoroastrian battle of good and evil after a biological disaster destroys most of humanity, I hope that he has his relationship with Jesus in good order.

Remember When Refusing to Pay Federal Taxes Was A Right-Wing Idea?

1/27/17 KPIX:
Officials are looking for money that flows through Sacramento to the federal government that could be used to offset the potential loss of billions of dollars’ worth of federal funds if President Trump makes good on his threat to punish cities and states that don’t cooperate with federal agents’ requests to turn over undocumented immigrants, a senior government source in Sacramento said.
The federal funds pay for a variety of state and local programs from law enforcement to homeless shelters.
“California could very well become an organized non-payer,” said Willie Brown, Jr, a former speaker of the state Assembly in an interview recorded Friday for KPIX 5’s Sunday morning news. “They could recommend non-compliance with the federal tax code.”
If California gets away with this, how many other states will decide to implement tax resistance federalism?

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Add Your Name to This Petition

Repeal the 1986 Hughes amendment
The 1986 Hughes amendment (as part of the Firearm Owners Protection Act) is an unconstitutional ban that limits law abiding citizens from owning fully automatic weapons that were manufactured past May 19, 1986. Select fire weapons are already very heavily regulated under the 1934 National Firearms Act which requires you to register your gun and submit a tax stamp. Since 1934 there have only been 2 known homicides committed with a legally owned fully automatic firearm and one of them was caused by a police officer. This law does nothing to prevent crime and it raises the price of legal automatic weapons to a ludicrous price due to supply and demand. Repealing the unconstitutional Hughes amendment will restore our second amendment rights that have been under attack for a very long time.
Yes, I want an M3A1 grease gun at a reasonable price.

Reducing Labor Costs

ScopeRoller made a whole bunch of product today.  It was elegantly mass production.  My assistant cut aluminum tube on the chop saw, and I ran it through the pilot hole process on the mill almost as fast as he made them.  While was drilling through the pilot holes and tapping them with the Tapmatic, I suddenly saw an opprtunity to speed up the process and reduce labor.

The aluminum sleeves have threaded holes in the same positions on opposite faces of the square tubing.

1. Use a longer drill bit to do both faces at the same time.  This also allows me to only mark pilot holes on two of the four faces, a big time saver.

2. Use a combo drill and tap in the Tapmatic (a wonderful device, by the way).  One less set of drill operations; one less tooling change.

Both on order.

Ideal:

3. A long enough drill and tap combo to do both faces at once.

The combo drill and 1/4"-20 tap works beautifully; I can now go directly from pilot holes to threaded holes in one operation using the Tapmatic (at 450 rpm).  It isn't long enough to do both sides of the tube at the same time, but I do have a drill bit long enough to drill both sides in one operation.  I will try to find a long enough drill/tap combo to do both sides at once.

No luck searching for a longer drill/tap combo.

Down Side of Buying From Small Companies

I bought a 7800 mAh battery for my Samsung phone a while back.  Anker has an18 month warranty.  The battery has failed and it is still under warranty, but they don't respond to my emails.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Another Power Outage

The good news is that the backup generator started right up.  I guess yesterday's problems were just air in the line instead of LP Gas.  Also, the battery backups in both offices kept the laptops, external monitors, printers and Internet service operable.

The Island of Dr. Moreau Sequel

1/27/17 Los Angeles Times:
In a bid to make organs for patients in need of transplants, scientists have created embryos that were hybrids of humans and pigs and grown them until they were on the verge of developing the body parts that might one day save lives.
Researchers reported Thursday in the journal Cell that they injected pig embryos with human stem cells that were capable of developing into a wide range of tissues. Those composite embryos were then transferred into the wombs of mother pigs.
By the time the scientists harvested the embryos after four weeks, the human stem cells had established beachheads throughout the developing pigs. As a blob of fetal pig tissue reached the cusp of developing into a cluster of distinct organs, human cells appeared throughout the tiny organism, ready to contribute to the generation of organs.
Does anyone else find this troubling?

Human Trafficking

I was pleased to see Trump including human trafficking in the list of reasons for having a border. 1/25/17 Chicago Sun-Times:
HOUSTON — President Donald Trump announced his long-awaited plan Wednesday to build a wall on the 1,954-mile U.S. border with Mexico, calling for its “immediate construction” to stop illegal immigration, drug and human trafficking and acts of terrorism.
I have libertarian friends who find it hard to believe there is much demand for underage prostitutes.  1/26/17 Idaho Statesman:
In November 2013, a month after being released from prison, Michael Wayne Wade met a girl.
Wade, 31, had served a five-year sentence in state prison for failing to register as a sex offender. In a phone call recorded by the 15-year-old girl — identified in court documents as “MV” — Wade told her he wanted her to “hustle” — to work as a prostitute with him acting as her “daddy,” or pimp.
Even Obama's DOJ acknowledged the problem of cross border child sex trafficking.



Read more here: http://www.idahostatesman.com/news/local/crime/article129015314.html#storylink=cpy

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Progress

I have been battling depression for several weeks; the downside of my usual hypomanic state.  I'm feeling better and more energetic today.  It doesn't hurt that Geenwood Publishing, who published books 2, 4, and 5, are asking for chapters from my book on early gunsmithing.

Nice National Review Piece About Constitutional Carry

In particular how fast it is spreading.

ScopeRoller Price Increase Seems Not to Be a Problem

Orders coming in at the new higher prices.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Please, President Obama, Don't Help Me!

1/25/17 Yahoo News:
A former gang member saw his prison sentence commuted by then-President Obama in November—only to be killed almost exactly two months later. Demarlon Thomas, 31, was transitioning out of the federal prison system in a Saginaw, Mich., halfway house after having his sentence commuted Nov. 22. Two masked gunmen brandishing assault-style weapons sought out and killed Thomas, a former member of Saginaw’s Sunny Side Gang, at that halfway house Monday night, reports MLive.

A Wealth of Data

One of the insane tasks that I took on when writing Armed America (2006) was compiling a spreadsheet of all the gunsmiths that I found in primary and secondary sources, working  before 1840, at least in part to refute the Bellesiles/Haag claim of a lack of early gun culture.  I ended up with 2445 entries for which I could establish dates and location.  I started searching a resource that was not available in the 2000s: books.google.com and what an overwhelming wealth.

While revising this chapter, I took advantage of the dramatic expansion of searchable online books and soon realized that examples such as the following have expanded the available data to a level that would enlarge this book dramatically were I to include all: An 1831 request from the War Department to Maj. F.W. Armstrong requests that he repair all the old rifles belonging to the Choctaws, authorizing him to hire “an additional gun-smith” if needed.[1]  Similarly, War Department instructions to Lewis Cass specify maximum wages to be paid to gunsmiths providing repair services to the Indians.[2]


[1] Commissary General of Subsistence, Correspondence on the Subject of the Emigration of Indians, Washington: Duff Green, 1835), 2:372-3.
[2] Ibid., 2:848.

Trump Plans to Embarrass the Left About Sanctuary Cities

His executive order directs that sanctuary cities are not eligible for federal grants, and provide a weekly report of crimes committed by illegal aliens in sanctuary cities.  I wonder how much the leftists are going to love what they find out about their illegal "guests."

Progressive Dishonesty About Supremacy of Federal Law

Behind the sanctuary city idea is the notion that cities and counties can ignore federal law, like this 1/24/17 story about Texas Gov. Abbott threatening to cut off state funding to Austin's sheriff because she refuses to inform ICE that they are releasing illegals from jail.  Now, if a Republican invoked states' rights to refuse to follow Supreme Court rulings on gay marriage or transgendered bathrooms, the left would suddenly remember Art. VI, sec. 2:
2: This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

Now Trump is telling these locality rights governments, federal law is supreme.

Two Weeks Ago It Was LP Gas

Today, it's Idaho Power.  No electricity.  The backup generator didn't start at first, probably because of air in the LP gas line.  But eventually it started manually, ran for a few minutes then stopped.  Don't know why.  The backup power runs the kitchen appliances and outlets, well pump, pressurization pump, and furnace.  Idaho Power is seldom inoperable for very long, so I doubt evacuation will be necessary.  No ISP (those outlets are not on backup generator) but I am using my cell as mobile hotspot.

Adding to the fun, the 7800 mAh battery in my cell failed.  I am using the backup battery recharged by the cell phone battery pack.  But this won't last long.  Next step: put cell phone in TrailBlazer to charge.  GM keeps cigarette lighters hot even with engine off.

Two hours, five minutes without electricity.  When it came back, all the circuits fed by the backup generator were still off.  I turned the transfer switch control from AUTO to OFF and back to AUTO and everything was fine.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

How Many People Were at Trump's Inauguration?

Count them.  This CNN gigapixel image can be scrolled ans zoomed in incredible detail.  You can even see the snipers on some of the buildings.  Not enough detail to determine the weapons, though.

Remember When Feminists Objected to Being Objectified?

So why march in a "lady parts" costume?

Is Progressivism A Mental Illness?

For some.

Variable Rate Bonds

Some years ago, I bought some Sallie Mae (Student Loan Marketing Corp., if you don't speak Wall Street) bonds that were variable rate interest.  Why?  Fixed rate bonds, which are more common, tend to drop in value as interest rates rise above the coupon rate.  My hope was to have something not subject to value drop as interest rates rose.  The bonds are coming due on February 1.

In retrospect, it was a mistake.  The conventional wisdom for bonds is buy and hold to maturity.  That is all I have ever done.  A fixed rate bond bought back then would have been a better choice because higher yield.  The good news is that the value at maturity will be $50,000; I only paid $45,575 at purchase, so a nice capital gain along with interest for the last several years.  Also, the warm feeling of helping college students get educated (either in the formal sense, or "Why did I borrow $80,000 to get MA in Puppetry?").


Keystone XL

Trump is going forward.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Manufacturing Costs

I've been calculating ScopeRoller manufacturing cost, which really hurts.  There is the material cost for aluminum tubing, for acetal solids, the three types of casters, the hex head bolts and the 8-32 socket head screws, then the labor to cut everything up and assemble.  I'm trying to make sure that I am making money (I am) and also see where I can reduce price to increase sales.

Glad I did this; in many cases my materials plus labor was very close to sale price.  Prices now adjusted upward.

Hollyweird: A Letter to Rep. Labrador

I see that Hollyweird is pushing two bills: Protect IP Act, and Stop Online Piracy Act.  There was a time when attempts to protect the entertainment industry from online thieves would have been a no-brainer for me, but I would ask you to oppose these bills for three reasons.

1.Several years back, I along with hundreds of other parties were sued by a company called Righthaven for copyright infringement, in this case, copying a few too many words out of a news story for a scholarly website.  Most of us settled because the penalties under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act were so severe that making a "fair use" argument when there is no statutory definition of "fair use," and no clear case law definition, either, was dangerous.  One of the defendants who fought Righthaven found during discovery that Righthaven did not even own the copyrights that they were using to extort thousands of dollars from each victim.  Righthaven went bankrupt and none of the victims got even a dime back from this fraud.  Along the way, I discovered that the MPAA and RIAA have a history of abuse of the judicial process to intimidate people.  Please, no more encouragement of this bad behavior!  I would also ask that Congress write a clear definition of "fair use" into the Copyright Act.

2. If the entertainment industry were suffering financially, I  might be more sympathetic to their woes.  The extravagance that the industry regularly demonstrates compared to people who work hard for a living inclines me to think that they have more than enough money, especially since their crocodile tears for working people are so hypocritical.

3. The entertainment industry are our political enemies, as the recent post-election temper tantrums demonstrate, and also their constant attempts to degrade our society's morals.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Rioters in Trouble

1/21/17 CBS News reports Inaugural rioters are facing felony charges with up to 10-year sentences.  A bit more serious than most were expecting, I'm sure.  There are consequences to this behavior and it isn't participation trophies.

Picture Stitcher

HP used to give away a really neat program with their digital cameras that stitched pictures together to create panorama pictures.  At some point they dropped this feature.  I miss it.  But I found an open source program called Hugin that does a decent job.  It takes a bit of learning to figure out how to export the image.
created from





Winter Sucks

As I confront the misery of this winter, I think back to previous springs:



Saturday, January 21, 2017

Entertaining Video About Deranged Progressive Reactions

Trustafarian Anarchists Complain About Too Much Governments

1/20/17 KGW  The spoiled rich kid anarchists are upset because Trump is going to reduce governmental power and here they are complaining how harshly the police (you know, government employees) treated them for breaking the law.

Just Words So Far...

But the right words.1/20/17 Daily Mail:
President Trump's Obamacare order directs every government agency that implements or enforces the 'Obamacare' law to grant waivers, deferments, exemptions and delays in order to minimize or eliminate any costs associated with implementing Obama's signature medical insurance scheme.
It also orders agencies to bend over backwards in order to 'provide greater flexibility to States and cooperate with them in implementing healthcare programs.'
And in a nod to Trump's oft-stated goal of erasing geographic boundaries that established state-specific monopolies for insurers, his order requires federal agencies to 'encourage the development of a free and open market in interstate commerce for the offering of healthcare services and health insurance, with the goal of achieving and preserving maximum options for patients and consumers.'


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4141584/President-Donald-Trump-s-Inaugural-Parade-kicks-off.html#ixzz4WPbgXk00 Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook
The state boundary limitations on health insurance certainly drive up insurance costs.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Progressives At Play

The Gore Effect

1/19/17 Hollywood Reporter:
Park City is bracing for a slew of snow at Sundance Film Festival.
 The festival locale sank to below-freezing temperatures ahead of Thursday's opening-night film An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power, Al Gore's climate-change follow-up to 2006's An Inconvenient Truth.
Sporadic snowfall is expected throughout the duration of the fest, while temperatures may dip as low as 11 degrees Fahrenheit during the Utah event's first few days, according to the National Weather Service.
Speaking truth to power.  Who has the power?  More like Power to Truth.

Light Bulbs: To Rep. Labrador

hen the Democrats controlled Congress, they prohibited sale of incandescent bulbs.  I don't have much use for incandescent bulbs; I have replaced most incandescent bulbs in my house with LED bulbs.  Still, the government should repeal the ban.  If incandescent bulbs waste energy, let the free market decide this issue.  The ban was just nanny-state government at its silliest.

The Districts Defeat Capital City

That's the message of Trump's inaugural speech.

He also talked about countries relying on us to defend them,  But he also talked about restoring old alliances (probably including Israel) an new alliances.  And about utterly destroying radical Islamic terrorism.

Another Letter to Rep. Raul Labrador

I understand President Trump is considering defunding the National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.  Please support these efforts.

While NEH often funds work of real value in my area of interest (history) our budget deficit is far more important.  I have yet to see that NEA has ever funded anything of value.

While PBS is sometimes of some value, National Propaganda Radio is clearly a partisan operation and of negative value.  The billionaires who fund the Democratic Party can spend their money funding elitist garbage instead of forcing me to do so.

The Logic Is Weak in This One

In the early 1960s, Buddhist monks sometimes set themselves on fire in South Vietnam in protest at the South Vietnamese government.  What exactly were they protesting?  Not sure, but irt made for an amazing visual.  1/18/17 New York Post:
A man tried to set himself on fire outside Trump International Hotel in Washington, DC, to protest what he described as the president-elect’s lack of “respect” for the US Constitution.
The unidentified 45-year-old was rushed to the hospital around 9:30 p.m. Tuesday. He was being treated for burns on 10 percent of his body, according to the Washington Post.
The man, reportedly from California, told reporters he lit himself on fire using a lighter and accelerant “to protest the fact that we elected somebody who is completely incapable of respecting the Constitution of the United States.”
Reporter: He didn't try to do so, he did set himself on fire.  And I hope he learns that he's a fool.  Burns are painful and take a long time to heal.

Fool: The Constitution specifies how we elect the President.  You don't like the result so you light yourself up?  Who doesn't respect the Constitution?

Thursday, January 19, 2017

A Sign for the Trump Administrations' Future

1/19/17 New York Post:
“Wrapping up this transition on schedule and under budget,” Pence bragged, claiming the transition team would return 20 percent of the taxpayer-funded budget to the federal government.
Keep that up and the national debt will start shrinking.  Are the #NeverTrumpers still upset?

How to Turn Off the Masses

Another day, another university’s religion program bogged down by political correctness. Earlier this week, we reported on how two top divinity schools are suggesting gender-neutral pronouns for God — and now one of the top colleges in the nation has students asking about whether God is a racist.
Specifically, Pennsylvania’s Swarthmore College is offering a religion class this semester titled, “Is God a White Supremacist?”
The course explores how religion represents race, with a particular focus on “the interpretive practices that are foundational to the process of ‘whiteness-making’ and the construction of white identity,” the spring 2017 catalog says.

Rain Melting Snow and Ice

The only question is how much will be on my driveway when air temperature drops below freezing tonight.  The driveway is a 1:8 slope, so I expect it to drain off.  I'll probably drop a layer of MgCl2 if all or most of the snow and ice is gone, so any water will be prevented from freezing.  Even a small layer won't stop the Jaguars.

No, Not a Suggestion

Breitbart:
On the Wednesday, January 18 broadcast of CNN’s The Situation Room, host Wolf Blitzer aired a segment with a chyron featuring the headline “Developing Now.” During that “developing” segment, Blitzer and correspondent Brian Todd discussed what would happen if the unthinkable occurred on January 20.
Blitzer introduced the segment, saying, “What if an incoming president and his immediate successors were wiped out on day one?” and from there, CNN contributor Brian Todd took over to outline the line of succession if an attack blew up the inaugural dais, killing both Trump and Pence.
The upshot was that in the case of both heads of state being killed, the Secretary of State would take over. Currently that man is Secretary of State John Kerry, But in case some objected because his office would also end as of noon on Inauguration Day, then it would be the Speaker of the House — Republican Paul Ryan — or even Obama’s Under Secretary for Political Affairs Tom Shannon.

Now, if only Republicans Will Go Along

1/19/17 The Hill:
Staffers for the Trump transition team have been meeting with career staff at the White House ahead of Friday’s presidential inauguration to outline their plans for shrinking the federal bureaucracy, The Hill has learned.

The changes they propose are dramatic.
The departments of Commerce and Energy would see major reductions in funding, with programs under their jurisdiction either being eliminated or transferred to other agencies. The departments of Transportation, Justice and State would see significant cuts and program eliminations.
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting would be privatized, while the National Endowment for the Arts and National Endowment for the Humanities would be eliminated entirely.
Overall, the blueprint being used by Trump’s team would reduce federal spending by $10.5 trillion over 10 years.
NEH does some valuable things, but not enough to justify our ballooning national debt.

7th Circuit Overturns Chicago's Death by a Thousand Cuts Gun Range Regulation

Ezell v. Chicago, Nos. 14-3312 & 14-3322 (7th Cir. 2017) overturned a Chicago ordinance that effectively banned gun ranges in the city by only allowing them with special use permits in manufacturing districts and not within 100 feet of another range or 500 feet of a residential district or school or daycare.  They also overturned a ban on minors using the ranges even under adult supervision.  (Whatever happened to wanting gun owners to be trained for safety reasons?)

Heightened scrutiny under the Second Amendment struck these down.  If there was evidence that such location restrictions were for legitimate governmental purposes (environmental, crime) they might have survived, but even the city's own "experts" admitted that there was no evidence to support such claims.  That law enforcement and private security firm ranges are exempt from these rules shows that there is no basis for their claims.

Concerning the minor prohibition"
The City staked most of its case on the categorical argument and made little effort to justify prohibiting older adolescents and teens from engaging in supervised target practice at a range. Its rationale rests largely on an argument from “common sense” about public safety and the safety of children. Yet even common sense does not lie with the City.
Remember that "common sense" is the phrase gun control groups use to justify laws for which they have no data demonstrating a benefit.
In what must have come as a surprise to the City, Commissioner Krimbel, the City’s own witness on this subject, actually agreed with the plaintiffs’ attorney that banning anyone under 18 from entering a shooting range goes too far and extends beyond legitimate safety concerns. Here’s a taste: “I will give you this: I believe [the age restriction] is inartfully drafted because it seem[s] clear to me that the purpose of it is to not have kids running around unsupervised.” And this: “[Y]ou might want to draft that a little bit differently” because shooting ranges are a “good place” to teach a youngster “how to fire a rifle.” And this: “In fact, my own son took a shooting class when he was 12, so I’m well aware of the fact it’s okay to teach a young person how to shoot a gun properly.” Commissioner Krimbel also conceded that the City lacked any data or empirical evidence to justify its blanket no-one-under-18 rule. 

Doubtless Reinforcing Pence's Views of Homosexuality

1/18/17 USA Today:
Brandishing rainbow flags and signs that read "Queer Love" and "Trans Power," scores of activists marched Wednesday night toward Vice President-elect Mike Pence's rental home in Northwest Washington, D.C.
Days before Donald Trump's administration is expected to take over the White House, activists planned what they described as the "Queer Dance Party at Mike Pence's House." They met around 6 p.m. ET outside the Friendship Heights Metro Station, where video footage showed them chanting slogans and holding LGBT pride flags as they made their way to the neighborhood where Pence and his wife, Karen, moved after the November election.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Hollywood's Weirdness About Trump

And yes, I am thinking of Joss Whedon's vulgarly expressed desire for a rhinoceros to engage in a perverse act with Speaker of the House Ryan.  Do these self-important sorts read news or is this NPR and the Clinton campaign's terrifying fundraising emails doing the informing?

Snowpocalypse II

is underway

video

Criminals Aren't the Only Reason to Carry a Gun

PHOENIX (AP) -- People flock to the Arizona desert town of Sedona for its tranquility and relaxation. But tranquility turned to terror after a rabid bobcat attacked residents and pets.
Authorities killed the rabid animal after it injured four people, a dog and a house cat in three separate attacks last week in Sedona.
And being injured by a rabid animal means very painful rabies shots.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

The Obama Reset of Russian Relations

It worked so well.  1/16/17 New York Times:
For Norwegians, the sight of dozens of American Marines traipsing through the snow in military fatigues — the first time foreign forces have been posted to their country’s territory since World War II — may have brought a welcomed sense of security, but it also harked back to a dark era of the Cold War that many had hoped to forget.
1/15/17 New York Daily News:
WARSAW, Poland — Polish leaders welcomed U.S. troops to their country Saturday, with the defense minister expressing gratitude for their arrival and calling it the fulfillment of a dream Poles have had for decades.
The ceremony in the western Polish town of Zagan comes some 23 years after the last Soviet troops left Poland. It marks a historic moment — the first time Western forces are being deployed on a continuous basis to NATO’s eastern flank.
Military Times:
VILNIUS, Lithuania — Lithuania on Tuesday signed an agreement with the United States formalizing the presence of U.S. troops in the small Baltic country bordering Russia and Belarus.

The agreement will facilitate the deployment of U.S. forces and support staff as well as the implementation of joint exercises and training. According to the Lithuanian military, 140 U.S. troops are currently based permanently in Lithuania, and other units frequently visit for military drills.
We have treaty obligations to both, and I am glad to see us ready to stand up to Russian aggression, but I don't think this was what Obama promised in 2008 about "smart diplomacy."

Someone Is Funding This

The website for those attempting to disrupt the inauguration includes a lot of free breakfasts.

I've Been Wondering for a Long Time if There Is a Better Solution Than Chains

I wondered enough to spend some time trying to develop an easier way to attach traction aids.  There are fundamental geometry issues that must be addressed, and I couldn't figure them out.  I hate chains because of how hard they are to install and remove.  I have one bad memory of helping my father install chains on our 1967 Pontiac Ventura on the I-5 pass from Oregon to California at night in freezing weather at the side of the road.

Consumer Reports tested snow socks, which work well, but don't seem much easier than chains.

I've seen these Spikes Spiders advertised, and this review said once you have the mounting hub installed install and removal are easy and fast.  But $610 per pair!  That's quite a bundle.

Colt 1903/1908

You have probably seen this gun in many early 20th century films.

I have long thought this a beautiful piece of design work.  Colt has recently resurrected it.  I can't really justify spending more than $1000 for a gun that fires .32 ACP. and is a bit big compared to more modern pocket pistols, but it is a marvelous piece of industrial art.

There are non-firing replicas of many service pistols, like the M1911 and Browning Hi-Power.  The mechanical parts operate; the slide retracts.  I suspect they strip much like the real thing. Does anyone make such a replica of the 1903 or 1908 (the .380ACP version)?

Maybe Progressives Aren't As Antigun as We Assume

A walker in Washington came across two guns in a violin case along the Potomac River on Wednesday, leading police to find several other weapons stashed in the area, officials said.
U.S. Park Police said a woman walking in the woods near the C&O Canal, which runs along the river, found the case. When law enforcement officers arrived, they found more guns and ammunition — some in pails, others in plastic garbage bags.
"At this point, we don't know how they got there, why they're here or when they got here," police spokeswoman Sgt. Anna Rose said.
She said officers found a variety of weapons, including long guns and pistols.
Just before Trump's inauguration?  Must be a coincidence.

Letter to my Congressman

I know that repealing Obamacare is high on the list of things to do.  A few suggestions:

1. Part of what suppresses competition in health insurance are rules that prevent interstate pools, except for the ones organized by labor unions.  If small businesses could use interstate insurers, it would make insurance available to many small business employees.  Maybe not a lot, but some.

2. Some states (such as Idaho) prohibit non-Idaho insurers from selling health insurance to Idaho residents.  This is partly a response to a federal law that exempts insurers from antitrust laws.  Repeal the federal law so that more insurers could offer coverage across state lines.

More Winning

1/17/17 Wall Street Journal:
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said it plans to create about 10,000 U.S. jobs this year, a sign that even the country’s largest private employer feels the need to tout American job growth ahead of President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration.
Great jobs?  No.  But lots of Americans would prefer some job over no job.  I suspect even some of the English and Anthropology degrees might apply.

Asteroid Mining

1/17/17 U.K. Daily Star is a very tabloidish paper, so perhaps less meaningful than it appears:
NASA to explore space rock worth so much money it would DESTROY world economy

The 200km-wide asteroid, named Psyche, is currently orbiting the sun between Mars and Jupiter.
It is made up of various precious metals such as iron, nickel and gold.
Experts believe the iron alone in the rock would be worth $10,000 quadrillion – enough to cause the world’s economy, worth $73.7 trillion, to promptly collapse altogether.
I can see how it might destroy iron, nickel, cobalt, gold, and platinum mining--if you could figure out how to extract it.  (But cheap metals would provoke an economic boom) But how do you land the pieces?  ISIS, we have a gift for you, every week, for the next century, or until you come to your senses.  It is believed that Sudbury, Ontario's nickel is extraterrestrial in origin:
The Sudbury Basin, which is the world's second-largest impact crater, was likely formed by an enormous comet that battered Earth more than 1.8 billion years ago, new research suggests....
Ever since miners discovered rich deposits of copper, nickel, palladium and other valuable metals there in the 1880s, scientists have wondered how the giant hole in the Earth came into existence, said study co-author Joseph Petrus, an earth sciences doctoral candidate at Laurentian University in Sudbury.
As I mentioned a few weeks ago, nickel-iron is very tough, tougher than stainless steel.  Also, how do you cut something that  can turn or move away from any force?  Reaction thrusters can start it turning, and perhaps the inertia of it would allow cutting, but if it has that much inertia, it will be a lot of energy to get it spinning, I think.

Monday, January 16, 2017

How Much Has America Changed?

I was listening to the great music I grew up with, and I noticed this song which was very popular sung Staff Sgt. Barry Sadler.


Most people hear Green Berets and think of the John Wayne movie and Vietnam, but they were liberators in South America.  My HVAC guy was a Green Beret sniper in the first Iraq War.

Trump: The Winning Just Keeps Coming

1/16/17 Wall Street Journal:
General Motors Co. this week will announce plans to invest at least $1 billion across several U.S. factories, two people familiar with the plan said, a move aimed at underlining its commitment to U.S. manufacturing jobs in the wake of President-elect Donald Trump’s criticism of the auto maker’s imports from Mexico.
GM’s announcement could come as early as Tuesday, the people briefed on the plan said. The company will cite a number of new jobs in excess of 1,000 stemming from the investment but doesn’t plan to specify which of its factories are in line for more work, one person said.

What Happens When You Watch a Documentary Titled "Rats"

My wife suddenly had the idea of a compressed air machine gun firing rats at the enemy: the Ratling Gun.  Sharp little teeth and claws coming your way!  They are anesthetized while being loaded to avoid cruelty.  I was telling my wife about the book Fox Tossing: And Other Forgotten and Dangerous Sports, Pastimes, and Games

Sunday, January 15, 2017

-1 Fahrenheit This Morning

I started some advertising campaigns this morning for my climate change book.  Suddenly, some sales.  It works.

Who Are the Violent Thugs?

Opera star Andrea Bocelli backed out of singing at Donald Trump's inauguration after receiving death threats, The Mail on Sunday has learnt.
The revelation came as another singer – Broadway legend Jennifer Holliday – last night pulled out of the President-elect's festivities after being threatened and branded an 'Uncle Tom'.
When blind tenor Bocelli announced he would not sing at this Friday's celebration, it was widely reported it was because fans had said they would boycott his concerts and records.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4120970/Opera-star-Andrea-Bocelli-backs-singing-Trump-s-inauguration-receiving-death-threats.html#ixzz4VqWc6cfU Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Saturday, January 14, 2017

This is Embarrassing

Somehowe we have lost one of the Jaguar X-type keyfobs and one of the XF keyfobs.  These are hideously expensive to replace--approaching $1000.  (And no, the usual suppliers say that Jaguar keeps the devices for programming these proprietary.)  We have searched everywhere.  I am hoping this will be covered by comprehensive on auto insurance or maybe homeowner's insurance.  Anyone have experience with this?

Found instructions for programming the X-type fob, and found a new one on eBay for $40.

The XF apparently requires the dealer to do it (special cable & software).  Still expensive, but key finders on order.  It may be a few weeks before I feel safe slaloming the XF down the driveway and being sure of it climbing the glacier afterwards.

Car insurance?  No.  Homeowner's?  Maybe, but we have a $1000 deductible so it doesn't make sense to file a claim.

Weird Concept of Free Speech

1/13/17 Jerusalem Post:
A German regional court in the city of Wuppertal affirmed a lower court decision last Friday stating that a violent attempt to burn the city's synagogue by three men in 2014 was a justified expression of criticism of Israel’s policies.
Johannes Pinnel, a spokesman for the regional court in Wuppertal, outlined the court’s decision in a statement.
Three German Palestinians sought to torch the Wuppertal synagogue with Molotov cocktails in July, 2014. The local Wuppertal court panel said in its 2015 decision that the three men wanted to draw “attention to the Gaza conflict” with Israel. The court deemed the attack not to be motivated by antisemitism.
You know things are weird when a Green MP is criticizing it:
After the local Wuppertal court decision in 2015, Volker Beck, a leading Green Party MP, said the “attack on the synagogue was motivated by antisemitism” and blasted the court for issuing a decision stating that the goal of the attack was to highlight the war in Gaza.

“This is a mistaken decision as far as the motives of the perpetrators are concerned,” he said, adding that the burning of a synagogue in Germany because of the Middle East conflict can be attributed only to antisemitism.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Should Tax Dollars Be Funding This Partisan Crap?

1/13/17 Campus Reform:
A national “teach-in” movement is asking professors to set aside class time between Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and the presidential inauguration to “protest” oppression and challenge “Trumpism.”
The movement, known as “Teach, Organize, Resist,” is set to kick-off on January 18, strategically “poised between Martin Luther King Jr. Day and the presidential inauguration” as an explicit means of “challenging Trumpism.”
“Transform your classrooms and commons into spaces of education that protest policies of violence, disenfranchisement, segregation, and isolationism,” the organizers urge educators on the movement’s homepage, clarifying elsewhere on the site that participation “is an opportunity to affirm the role of critical thinking and academic knowledge in challenging Trumpism.”
The first revolution in history funded by the government to be overthrown!

What Will the Left Ask For Next?

Comedian, TV personality and longtime Donald Trump foe Rosie O'Donnell on Wednesday evening called for the use of martial law to stop the president-elect's inauguration next week.
She takes sore loser to a new level.  Suddenly this 1/13/17 Washington Post article makes more sense:
The Army general who heads the D.C. National Guard and has an integral part in overseeing the inauguration said Friday that he will be removed from command effective at 12:01 p.m. Jan. 20, just as Donald Trump is sworn in as president.
Maj. Gen. Errol R. Schwartz’s departure will come in the middle of the presidential ceremony — classified as a national special security event — and while thousands of his troops are deployed to help protect the nation’s capital during an inauguration he has spent months helping to plan.

More American Jobs: A Continuing Tragedy

1/13/17 Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
Lockheed Martin CEO Marillyn Hewson emerged from a meeting with President-elect Donald Trump Friday pledging to bring down the cost of the F-35 Lightning II and promising to hire more than 1,800 additional workers at the Fort Worth plant.
Trump has been in a dogfight with Lockheed Martin over the F-35 program, questioning its costs and capabilities. Last month he went on Twitter to say that the stealth fighter’s costs were “out of control” and he talked about replacing it with a comparable F-18 Hornet built by Boeing.
In one sense, military-industrial complex jobs really don't tell us anything about economic health and growth.  The newly hired workers might disagree.  Bringing the military-industrial complex into more responsible pricing should just infuriate all those leftists with the Air Force bake sale bumper stickers, right?

Read more here: http://www.star-telegram.com/news/business/article126384814.html#storylink=cpy

There's a Doctoral Dissertation in This, I'm Sure

Just not sure in what department.  Someone grabbed baby names by state 1910-2015 from Social Security Administration, and can show you what were the most popular names by year and state.  In 1956, Michael was the winner in the Western States and many plains states.  Why?  Popular actor name?

No Longer Snow Camping

The LP gas is back on; the furnace is working; a hot shower will happen shortly; and the electric clothes dryer problem turned out to be that it is an LP gas dryer.  (More cost effective, I recall, from when I was specifying appliances).

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Rather Like a Two Stage Rocket

We drive the chained-up TrailBlazer to our neighbor, swap it for the studded Jaguar X-type, go grocery shopping, return and move groceries into the TrailBlazer and go back up our driveway/glacier.  This will get very old in a few weeks, I think, if the storms continue.

Maybe Clinton Won't Go to Jail...

But others might.  1/12/17 Bloomberg:
The Justice Department’s inspector general opened an investigation into whether the FBI failed to follow appropriate procedures in its probe of Hillary Clinton’s handling of official e-mail while serving as secretary of state.
That review includes a look at the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s actions leading up to Director James Comey’s decision to announce findings of the probe on July 5, in which he publicly said that Clinton and her top aides were “extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information" but no charges would be pursued.

Headed Out to Buy Chains

Pricing is extortionate of course.  Just ordered 80 pounds of ice melt from amazon.  It is simply not available anywhere in the Boise area for 100 miles.

Amazingly enough, O'Reilly's, once in the store, were only $119 per pair.  Once chained up (improved design over the last pair I installed), we climbed the driveway easily.  We pulled the X-type (which has studded tires) out of the telescope garage.  Now we park it at our neighbors close to the old highway; drive to it with chained-up TrailBlazer, and do our errands in it.  Not as convenient as one car, but chaining and unchaining is a pain.

Also nice, O'Reilly's had ice melt available at a bit over a dollar a pound.

Studded Tires Losing Studs

I am beginning to think the TrailBlazer's traction problem is partly that some of the studs are gone.  Eagle Tire Pros pointed out that we were missing some studs.  I'm not keen on spending $600+ on new studded tires, but this may be the only real choice.  I just wish I had more confidence this would solve the problem as opposed to this just being a miserably bad winter with unusual levels of ice.  I know Boise is nearly impassable in many areas.  Many churches canceled Sunday services because of these conditions and many schools have been closed for days.

Want to See Real Guts and Idealism?

Frontline Fighting: Battling ISIS (2015)

Follow three Brits who volunteer to fight ISIS as part of a Kurdish militia.  These are volunteers with no family attachments to the region who decided as one describes that ISIS is a threat to civilization and must be crushed.  The film follows them in an offensive to retake one region of Syria and destroy the ISIS headquarters on the top of a hill.  After several weeks of advancing and retaking villages from ISIS, the U.S. Air Force demolishes the ISIS HQ.  You can tell the volunteers are glad that the U.S. is helping (none of the European "powers" were doing so at the time).  These three Brits aren't the only foreign volunteers; there is also Kevin from Germany and Bob from Wisconsin (holding a sniper rifle like he knows how to use it).

Only one of the Brit volunteers had military service before joining up.  He also had a degree in Western Philosophy.  (Here, let me apply some deep thinking to your ignorance, ISIS).  For those skeptical of female combat soldiers,many of the Kurdish militia were young women, some only teenagers.  Of course, who has a stronger incentive to fight these savages?

Wow! Department of Defense: SJWs Being Replaced by Warriors?

1/11/17 Fox News:
The Pentagon could be poised for a rapid about-face under the Trump administration, with the Obama administration’s push for social reform surrendering to what could be an old-school emphasis on combat readiness and the spirit of the United States military, experts told FoxNews.com.
Under President Obama, the military sought to integrate transgender persons into the ranks, allow women into special operations forces and purge the nomenclature of gender-specific words, adopting what some critics say was a “politically correct” liberal agenda. That’s a contrast to the traditional U.S. military approach.
In addition, some Navy ships have been named for civil rights activists. And while the Obama administration has taken an inclusive approach on some issues, it has also worked to minimize expressions of Christianity in the ranks. For example, several officers have been disciplined for displaying Bibles or gospel verses in their quarters.
What next?  I'm sure the SJWs wanted the M4 replaced with Nerf guns.

Obamacare Swirling Round the Drain

1/11/17 USA Today reports on Senate action to repeal Obamacare and includes this odd claim:
Democrats said repealing the law will strip millions of Americans of insurance, leave people with pre-existing medical conditions unable to find coverage, and increase the nation's budget deficit by $353 billion over the next 10 years as the tax and fee provisions that pay for Obamacare are gutted.
Millions of those with insurance because of Obamacare can't really afford to use it because the deductibles are so high; in practice, their insurance only covers the relatively rare catastrophes.  This sort of coverage was not hideously expensive before Obamacare and yet few people bought it.  The pre-existing conditions concern seems legitimate.  But if repealing Obamacare will increase the deficit then my snarky observation that Obamacare was a tax increase with medical insurance as a side effect turns out to be true.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

What Are They There For?

1/11/17 Breitbart:
A passage from the Koran that denies one of the central tenets of the Christian faith was sung aloud at a cathedral service in Scotland.
The passage from Surah 19, which specifically denies that Jesus was the Son of God and says He should not be worshipped, was sung during a Eucharist service at St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral in Glasgow to mark the feast of the Epiphany.
Does the Episcopalian Church wonder why they are shrinking into nothingness?

Not the Onion

1/6/17 OC Weekly:
Judges Reject Orange County's Claim That Social Workers Didn't Know Lying In Court Was Wrong 
Using taxpayer funds, government officials in Orange County have spent the last 16 years arguing the most absurd legal proposition in the entire nation: How could social workers have known it was wrong to lie, falsify records and hide exculpatory evidence in 2000 so that a judge would forcibly take two young daughters from their mother for six-and-a-half years?
Can't a judge hold a lawyer in contempt of court for advancing such an argument?

The Social Justice of Mass Production

I have seen SJW criticism of mass production as dehumanizing because it reduces operatives to cogs.  While researching my book on gun manufacturing, I found a discussion of Colt's Hartford factory implemented Adam Smith's explanation of division of labor and its economic benefits.  But also this:
A panegyric to Colt published in 1866, explaining the advantages of division of labor, pointed out along with the many efficiencies articulated in Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations (1776) adds yet another: a job for everyone, regardless of skill level. “One man is too ignorant to manage a machine for stocking, but he can oil that machine, or at least sweep away its chips, a service for which two men are paid each a dollar a day.”[1]

[1] Henry Barnard, Armsmear: The Home, the Arm, and the Armory of Samuel Colt. A Memorial, (New York, n.p., 1866), 218.
Even people who might otherwise be unemployable could have some job; always better than dependence or poverty.

Walking in Snow: Great Exercise (But Not Again!)

I stopped treadmilling because of the ice fall injury, which is barely painful now.  The walk up my driveway (about a 1:8 slope) in the snow was all the workout I ever want.  Cold air in my lungs is not fun.

Thought We Could Get Out

Nope.  Stranded 1/4 of the way up the driveway.  Beginning to wonder if this is just not practical to live here.  Looks like a week from now might work.  If our LP gas was working, this would be more tolerable.

Put roof shingles under the tires and backed it out.  Now have several black patches on the pavement; the next two days of Sun should clear it.  My wife suggested that building something specifically for getting traction under these conditions as alternatives to chains and screaming might be good.  I thought that I had seen traction mats offered.  And yes, I have.  Cheaper than tire chains and much easier to use; also flat so they take up very little trunk space.  Fortunately, these roof shingles were lying around from the recent roof replacement.  I am going to put a set of four in the Jaguar's trunk, too.

This is the second time this week the roof shingles have allowed me to get out.  4WD forces all four wheels to turn at the same speed, but when one whhel is on ice and the other side is just spinning, traction control seems to take over and nothing happens.

Lacks Self-Awareness

Instapundit pointed me to 1/9/17 The Week:
I love America. It's Americans I hate....
Unlike a lot of people, who had to try to make conversation with conservative friends and family over the holidays, I only know two confirmed Trump voters. One of them is from Texas and the other's a Marine, so they both have their excuses. I recently sent a text to the former woman, letting her know I wasn't going to meet her for dinner while she was in town because I considered her vote for Trump unconscionable. ...
My feeling has always been that if a religion or ideology has become more important to you than actual human beings, something may have gone seriously wrong with your values. 
You won' have dinner with a friend because she voted for Trump, but decry politics becoming more important than "actual human beings."

Yes, progressivism does seem like a mental illness at times, or at least an emotional defect.



Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Suppressors

The Washington Post has an article about attempts to remove suppressors from National Firearms Act control.  As usual, in the pretense of balance, they quote the gun control crowd about these are going to make it easier for criminals to commit murders.  One commenter even claimed that they would make it easier for school shooters to engage in silent massacres.  Fortunately many knowledgeable shooters pointed out their suppressed rifles are still 135 db (jackhammer level)  The journalist also referred to a suppressed .22LR rifle as a "high-powered" rifle.

And the Snow Never Stops

When I kidded about my driveway being a glacier-in-training, I was kidding.  Not so much anymore.  It will not stop.  My wife isn't keen on plowing the driveway for fear the underlying ice will prevent coming back up.  As long as electricity stays running, we are safe.  I think we have a week or two of food, and 1000 gallons of gravity-fed water in the tank.

The Only Thing That Makes Being Snowbound Tolerable is Netflix

And now our ISP is down because of a power failure.

And our electric clothes drier has suddenly become very slow and ineffective.

Broadcast TV shows an avalanche warning for the town of Camas.

All of industrial civilization coming to an end!

Snow Melt Cable

I have been hunting for a solution.  There are a surprising number of companies that sell cables or mats that go inside the asphalt or concrete, and you can have the cables installed after the fact by cutting trenches in the surface.  For 600 feet that sounds expensive.  I suspect that just a melting cable just under the edge of the pavement would do the job.  This is advertised as 12 watts per foot.  There is a 240 VAC 428' length listed, which would get me to the worst part.  This would get most of the way down the driveway; a heavy gauge 240 VAC extension cord would get the rest of the way down perhaps in some waterproof conduit.  This is a bit of money, but it would end plowing, and greatly enhance house value.

According to Google Earth a path along the driveway from garage to base is about 879 feet.

As the crow flies, 659 feet:
Since I will need two sections, I could use one 428' segment to the big turn along the pavement, and a 240VAC line from garage to the big turn, and the 428 heat cable to the base, which is 424'.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Piers Morgan Gives Meryl Streep a New Orifice

I was pleased to Piers Morgan return to Britain, but this 1/9/17 Daily Mail article by him is stupendous, pointing out the arrogant elitism of portraying Hollywood as victims.

Depravity As Progressive Fruit

Heather McDonald writes about the culture of depravity that progressives have created and still make apologies for:
Anti-police activists and the mainstream media are incensed at the suggestion that the Black Lives Matter movement could have influenced the behavior of the four individuals in Chicago who tortured a disabled white man for hours last week while yelling “Fuck white people” and “Fuck Donald Trump.” In one sense, the activists and media are right: The influences were broader than that. They include the reign of racial victimology, inner-city gang culture, and black anti-white animus.
We live in Ta-Nehesi Coates’s America, characterized by the assumption that blacks are the eternal targets of lethal white oppression. Coates’s central thesis in Between the World and Me, his acclaimed phantasmagoria of racial victimology, is that America continuously aspires to the “shackling” and “destruction” of “black bodies.”
One of the comments led me to this horrifying account of a savagery that is just unimaginable outside a concentration camp.  Too monstrous to quote.

Another Argument Against Gun Registration

From NRA/ILA:
Last week, the California Department of Justice (DOJ) Privacy Office began mailing letters like this one to certified Firearm Safety Instructors.  The letter states that on October 14, 2016, DOJ inadvertently disclosed the name, date of birth, and California Driver’s License and/or Identification Card numbers of potentially every single DOJ certified Firearm Safety Instructor in California to an unknown requestor.  DOJ allegedly discovered the breach on October 27—well over two months ago—but is just now notifying individuals. 
With that information, how long to find someone's address?  Breaking into an instructor's house to steal guns is the ultimate organized crime supermarket.  I'm guessing probably dozens of handguns in an instructor's home.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Finally, We Know Why He Was Wandering Around Loose

Mr. Santiago’s family said he reported hearing voices and had other hallucinations, but said he was never given a diagnosis of PTSD. In November, he walked into an F.B.I. office in Alaska and told agents that his mind was being controlled by a United States intelligence agency.
“The delusions, the hallucinations are far more consistent with psychosis than PTSD,” said Dr. Donald C. Goff, a psychiatrist at New York University and a leading expert on schizophrenia. “So is the timing of the onset.”....
After telling the F.B.I. in November that his mind was being controlled, Mr. Santiago was taken to a civilian psychiatric hospital. The law prevents patients from being held involuntarily if they are not an imminent threat to themselves or others. Mr. Santiago was released after four days.
If you've read my book My Brother Ron, you won't be surprised to hear this.  Order a copy for your local library.  They love getting serious books donated.