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29 April 2011

Waiting for STS-134

Here I am in Titusville waiting for launch time.

What an exciting view from our parking area!


Got to love living in the future!  Took the pic from my Droid 2, uploaded to the laptop, posted it via the tether.

EDIT:
Launch was scrubbed.  NASA is going to try again on Monday at 1423 EDT.  One nice thing about living in the future is you get the live feeds from NASA TV and SpaceflightNow.com to tell you that things are scrubbed before the word has a chance to spread to the mob at large.  This means you can get ahead of the traffic snarl.

27 April 2011

SB234 Boned by amendment

The open carry bill has been gutted by an amendment that was rejected in committee.

It's now a bill about a CCW holder inadvertently exposing a concealed firearm.

Senator Bogdanoff, R-25 (Broward/Palm Beach) submitted the same amendment on the floor that had been rejected in committee and it was allowed.

Not what we were asking for at all.

The original author of the bill, Senator Evers, R-2 (Holmes, Washington, Bay, Escambia, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Walton) when asked for his comments just before the vote to allow sat and said nothing!


With friends like these...

White House Accedes to McThag's Demands

Cravenly caving in to this bloggers pitiful demands, the Obama administration has released the long form birth certificate.

Fox News Article

"We do not have time for this kind of silliness," Obama said.  "We've got better stuff to do.  I've got better stuff to do.  We've got big problems to solve."

Yes, that certainly explains why you spent millions keeping it from being released.

24 April 2011

That Birther Thing...

The Real ID Act required that I show a birth certificate to get something as mundane as a driver's license.

I was pretty neutral about the birther thing until I had to produce that rather large pile of documents to renew my license.

Now I DEMAND that President Barack Hussein Obama produce a bona-fide birth certificate or get his ass back to Illinois.  The constitution only has two requirements for the prez; you have to be 35 or older and you have to be born here.  Both of which are proven with the release of that one document.

The controversy disappears like a fart in the wind when he shows us the piece of paper that he's spent millions of dollars to keep from showing.

But since that document is so trivial that it must be shown to be able to drive, then there's zero justification for a public servant to refuse to show it to prove eligibility for office.

Yes, my demands are petty and selfish.  I am merely following the example of our president.

I have now tried Moxie.

I do not care for it.

It must be good for me for it is vile.

22 April 2011

This just happened, I swear!

A long time ago, I bought this book:

Much later I started accumulating guns.  Three of them look remarkably familiar.


I did not set out to recreate a book cover when I started this.  It just happens I like the three guns shown there.  Can you spot the little differences between what I built and what's in the picture?

21 April 2011

Gun Control explained


Hat tip: Joe Huffman

Tanks at Waco.

This comes up every year when someone mentions the incineration of the Branch Davidian compound near Waco.

The initial raid by the ATF certainly did not use tanks.

This picture is often shown.

There are four armored vehicles in this shot, but only a single TANK.

Nearest to farthest we have:

M88 Armored Recovery Vehicle.  This is like a tow truck for tanks.

M1A1 Abrams Main Battle Tank.  One or two were there.  I can't readily find a picture showing two together so it could be "tank at waco" instead of "tanks".

The last two are M2 or M3 Bradley Fighting Vehicles.  Neither has the 25mm gun mounted.  If they are M2 they are infantry transports, if they are M3 they are cavalry scout vehicles.

Also used, but not shown in this pic is the M728 Combat Engineer's Vehicle.  This is almost a tank.  It is an M60A1 Main Battle Tank with the 105mm main gun swapped for a snub-nosed 165mm gun.  A crane A-frame is mounted to the turret.  This at least started life off as a tank, but it's not really one anymore.  This is the vehicle shown in several videos spraying something from the top of that A-frame into the building and ramming the walls.  Wikipedia says that five were used during the siege.

20 April 2011

Gun Show Last Saturday

I went to the Lakeland Pistol Club's gun show last saturday.

It was not very crowded because there was a Suncoast Gunshow in Tampa.

What I noticed about this show, though, was how many collections were there for "private sale."

About half the tables weren't FFLs but just collectors getting rid of their collections.

Hard times indeed?

Another thing I have noticed; where are these mythical "cheap" S&W Model 10's I keep hearing about? I'd like to get me a .38 service size revolver but I can't seem to find one that's even remotely cheaper than a new snubbie. The model 10 isn't supposed to be collectable because there are supposed to be so damn many of them out there. $900 is not a sign that there's a glut in the the supply or a lack of demand.

The reason I mention it is that I think a .38 double action with a hammer could be a good gun for a new shooter to try out. Not to heavy on its own (a complaint I get about the 1911), not too bad on the recoil, option to try both kinds of trigger pull. Seems a good plan. I also need a .22 pistol for this too.

So, like, yeah. What?

It's like totally, you know, like yeah.

Today! You know? Today man!

Today. You should, um, something...

Yeah!

Dude!

My hands are, like, huge! They can touch anything but each other. Woah!

19 April 2011

April 19th is a busy day!

Battle of Lexington and Concord.

Holland recognizes the US.

Baltimore Riots.

Day one of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.

General of the Army Douglas MacArthur retires.

Last day of the Bay of Pigs invasion.

Last day of the Waco siege.

Oklahoma City federal building bombing.

The seat of German government returns to Berlin.

Lee and Kelley married.

18 April 2011

I think this is as good a thing as any to try to make a meme.

“Being a classical liberal means being a conservative when you need to preserve liberties you already have, a radical when you have to gain liberties you don’t have yet, a reactionary when you need to regain liberties you’ve lost, and a revolutionary when you can’t be free any other way. And always progressive, because without liberty, there can be no progress.”
– Carlo Cardasco, European director of Students for Liberty (via Oliver Cooper).
H/T to Robb who found it at JeffG's who got it from here.

Charlotte is Completed

Charlotte is now finished!  HUZZAH!

Gone is the anachronistic parkerized bolt carrier with forward assist serrations; installed is the vintage hard-chromed slick-side.

Charlotte presented some issued for a while.  Originally when I ordered two full-fence lowers from Nodak I had intended to make an XM177E2 (Sabrina) and an M16A1 (Charlotte).  The problem with Charlotte was that I couldn't find a nice M16A1 upper assy for a reasonable price.  There were lots of M16 uppers, so I bought one.

I had intended to get an M16A1 upper from NoDak, but just kept putting it off, putting it off...

Then I put a three-prong flash-hider on Charlotte.  That marked a turning point.  As soon as that was done the full-fence lower was WRONG, the parkerized bolt was WRONG.  With the bird-cage flash-hider she was correct as an M16 (Late R604).  The three prong was an early feature.

The early M16's had the partial fence lower and slick sided bolt carriers, earlier ones being chrome, later being parkerized with many having features both chrome and parkerized.

Charlotte is an example of a gun made at the tail end of chrome bolt carrier production.


A close up of the receiver area.


This also means that I can return Geff's bolt carrier to his M16A2 clone.  Thanks for the loan!

I also realized last night when I posted some detailed pics of my find to Arfcom that I lived in the future.  I took the pictures with my Droid 2, uploaded them to Webshots from the phone then posted them to Arfcom; again from the phone.  All need now is a flying car.

17 April 2011

C&R? Me?

AIM Surplus just sent out an email advertising that Yugoslavian M57 version of the Tokarev pistol is C&R eligible.

$189.95 each.

That's worth the $30 license right there, I think.

The discounts from Brownell's and Midway would prolly pay for it quickly too.

Hmmmmmmm.

Me, an FFL?  I kinda like the idea.

15 April 2011

SB 234

It looks like SB234 got a teeny tweak and is out of committee and heading to the Florida Senate for a vote.

It's almost certain to pass.

Then reconciliation with the Florida House bill.

Then to the Governor who has already said he'll sign it.

I endorse this plan!

Say Uncle has a tax reform plan that I am behind 100%!

First, no more payroll deductions, you get paid whatever you get paid; then you have to write a check every month to all the places that are deductions now.

Second, capitol offense for a congressman to hire someone to do their taxes for them.  They have to do them themselves.

I do think I shall fire off a couple of letters to my congress critters about this.  Who knows, it might work...

Read the comments at the Uncle link too, good stuff there.

B.A.G. Day

The current incarnation of Charlotte is my "Buy A Gun Day" purchase.

I ordered the partial fence lower in September with the estimated back-log being around now.  The rest of her was on the full fence lower that now resides on Tabitha.

Charlotte is a representation of an early M16 (R604) that would have been issued to brown water Navy or USAF from 1964-1967.


This year is kind of a twofer since I got a new lower for Charlotte and cleared out all the spare parts to make Tabitha.

The real joy is that I got two good rifles for the cost of a lower, gas tube and handguards.  At least additional cost since I'd already bought all the other parts and had them stashed around.

14 April 2011

Now, about that religion thing...

A nice thing about living in the USA is the freedom of religion.

You can believe (or not) in any God or Gods you'd like.

What you cannot do is expect me to abide by the rules your God demands you live by.  Not my religion, not my guiding light.

You cannot also expect me to treat you in accordance with your rules unless they happen to coincide with the secular laws.

If your religion forbids you to do something that is otherwise legal; guess what?  I am under zero obligation to abstain from that behavior.  Bacon cheeseburger on a Friday?  I'm good.

There are places where there are clashes about belief.  The Moslem taxi drivers who refused to transport people who had alcohol with them is a decent example.  There's nothing in the law that says they can refuse to transport someone with a bottle of scotch.  What they are doing is attempting to apply their religious rules to someone outside of their religion.  Bzzzzzzz!  Wrong answer.  Their job is to haul anyone who can pay the fare, with a couple of clearly defined and codified exceptions.  If your religion forbids you to do your job, you should pick another job.  Your religion forbidding you to do a job should also be allowable grounds to terminate you; for refusing to work.  No work, no job.

If your religion requires you to take certain Holy days off, we can work around that, that's why we have vacation days.  You should not get extra days just for the religious ones.  I have the same problem with smokers getting an extra hour of breaks to smoke that the non-smokers didn't.

If your religion forbids you to look at naked women, don't look at them.  Don't expect me to stop, I have no such Holy Writ on my titillation.

If your Holy Word demands that you kill me for looking at naked women, we have a problem.  Remember what I said about in accord to secular law?

A faithful person gets stuck between some hard choices in the US.  Above all else you must obey the secular law, or there cannot be anything close to religious freedom.

The US is full of restricted freedoms.  The goal is to be as free as possible without that freedom infringing on the rights of others.  The balance is difficult.  Diversity™ is not helping to strike that balance.

Bigotry

bigoted |ˈbigətid|adjectiveobstinately convinced of the superiority or correctness of one's own opinions and prejudiced against those who hold different opinions a bigoted group of reactionaries.• expressing or characterized by prejudice and intolerance a thoughtless and bigoted article.

prejudice |ˈprejədəs|nounpreconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience English prejudice against foreigners anti-Jewish prejudices. See note at bias .• dislike, hostility, or unjust behavior formed on such a basis accusations of racial prejudice.chiefly Law harm or injury that results or may result from some action or judgment prejudice resulting from delay in the institution of the proceedings.verb [ trans. ]give rise to prejudice in (someone); make biased the statement might prejudice the jury.chiefly Law cause harm to (a state of affairs) delay is likely to prejudice the child's welfare.PHRASESwithout prejudice Law without detriment to any existing right or claim the payment was made without anyprejudice to her rights.ORIGIN Middle English (sense 2 of the noun: from Old French, from Latin praejudicium, from prae ‘in advance’judicium ‘judgment.’

Those two words encompass "atheist" better than any I have seen so far.

The explanations for the hate of Christians are thinner than anything I have heard from a racist or a sexist.  A person who was of that religion did something to piss you off years ago, so you hate anyone of that religion?  Yes, that's rational.  That's exactly how racists get there too.

Don't believe in God?  That's fine, I don't either.  Wanna hate people who do?  You're a bigot.  Don't like being called a bigot?  Stop behaving as one.  Want to have a civilized debate about the existence of God?  That's fine.  A difference of opinion is not bigotry.

12 April 2011

Myths?

The Washington Post has an article up about five myths about the Civil War.

Lordy, where to start?

Point 1:

Yes, slavery was THE issue; but it was more in the handling of the issue than the issue itself that causes this.

You have to remember why it's called Dixie.  From the Mason-Dixon line.  Then, oh never mind, new states south of that hard-agreed upon line would decide on their own; just like all new states.  Bloody Kansas, anyone?  Missouri was none too placid during this time and remained quite riled up for while after the war too.

The South felt like they were getting screwed by the North, and the North had more seats to shove their decisions down the southern throats.  The present state of Maine was created out of Massachusetts JUST to get two more abolitionist senate seats.

This dictatorial tone is why Texas and Florida left.  Texas, remembering the Alamo and why they fought to secede from Mexico, pretty much said, "Didn't we do this once already?"  Florida had barely stopped being part of Spain and was none to keen on returning to being ruled from afar.

What is clear is that South Carolina was spoiling to secede.  The civil war was their second serious attempt.

This being about states rights is about the state's right to decide for themselves what to do about slavery.  The WaPo article even mentions that Lincoln didn't get into it to end slavery at all; but to preserve the union.

Point 2:

Tariffs were certainly a reason!  The Tariff of 1828 is mentioned several texts as one of the preludes to the civil war.

By the way, WaPo, most of the text of this point in your article is about AFTER the war.  It weakens your point a tad.

Point 3:

The author has forgotten how antebellum americans viewed themselves.  Robert E. Lee called himself a Virginian, not an American.  That was common across the whole nation.  To most troops in the south, their "nation" that is their state called and they answered.

This is a point you'd think would come up in the soldier's letters back home about their hopes and dreams after the war, right?  Something along the lines of, "Sure hope to be rich and buy me some niggers when we kick these damnyankee asses back to wherever."  But that doesn't come up much.  It's often difficult to tell the letters apart between North and South.  If owning slaves just happens to go with being rich in the south, "to own slaves" is not a primary motivator.

The dig about the Bush tax cuts is idiotic and out of place in this discussion.

Point 4:

While Lincoln certainly said he would keep slavery if that would keep the country together, his views on the topic were well known.  This is one point the author does a good job with!

Point 5:

Let's all ignore the cotton gin!  And the cotton picker.  And hundreds of other mechanizations of farm work.

Let's ignore how slavery died in Brazil all on it's own.

All of this bad history from someone who wrote a book claiming to right the wrongs our high school history teachers taught us.  'Tis sad.

Back Room Dealings

There's a movement to get open carry restored in Florida.

It's got traction.  Big time traction.

If it went to the floor, it will pass by a large margin; in fact it already has passed by such margins in the house.  Once it passes, it will be signed.

In the senate, it's bogged down in committee.  At each committee it has been nearly derailed by a single member of that committee attempting to nullify the content of the bill.

SIGH.

I am getting sick of this BS from our elected officials.

10 April 2011

Florida Farm Drama!

The headline was about how the price of produce could triple soon.

It's all the fault of the nefarious government!

Has the MSM finally noticed how the government chokes businesses?

Nope.

What the story was about is that starting this growing season the farmers are going to have to verify that their workers are all legally here.

Think about this for a second.

The increased costs can only mean one of two things.  Either the cost of verification is stupefyingly high or that they have been knowingly hiring illegal labor and will have to pay full wages, taxes and benefits now.

Which seems more likely to you?

Included in the segment is a farmer talking about how the foreign growers will be taking over the market if the immigration status verification law is allowed to stand.

I did a little research about this.

The issue about the verification is that the workers are migrant.  They show up, almost to the minute, at picking time.  While the farmer is doing their paperwork, his crops are beginning to rot.  By the time he's navigated the cumbersome system; most of his crop is gone.

It occurred to me immediately that the problem here is that we're ignoring another elephant in the room.  There are so many illegals in the country that we can no longer just assume that anyone showing up to work is here legally.  Fixing that problem means we won't need to force the farmer to check.

The wage issue is another big one.  Minimum wage is not the only price to that employee for an employer.  Matching on Social Security and Medicare, OSHA compliance and paying unemployment insurance are examples of mandated cost above and beyond wages.  Not to mention the overhead of figuring out things like withholding (small but cumulative).  Legal American labor does cost more.

What we are seeing, though, is the American farmer has already been priced out of the market by the importers.  If the local farms were the primary suppliers of this produce, they would be setting the price not responding to it.  The fact is that the market doesn't need the local supply to meet demand.  Sucks to be the farmer here.

I have a bit of a solution.  Make a farm exception to min-wage and tax laws.  Call farms essential to national defense and security (they are).  Farm WORKERS are required to get a cheap little ID card that says they waive the minimum wage and are willing to work at this lower rate anyway.  To get this cute little card you have to prove you're here legally.  This is nothing more than I had to do to get my driver's license renewed.   Now all Mr Farmer has to do is hang out a sign saying what he's paying and photocopy the card with his other hiring documents.  Everyone is happy!  We'll ignore my objections about how this bans anonymous labor for the nonce.

The real solution is to get serious about the border so that anyone wander up to the farm is assured to be legal to work here.

An Assessment of the American Character

Americans are an odd bunch. We are the ultimate in forgiving and vengeful. And we go all out when we indulge in those two things.

We nuked Japan. Now we buy all the cars they can make. The nukes were vengeance, the cars are forgiveness, we could have stayed occupying them and starved their economy.  We're helping them after the tsunami.

We tend to ignore most things, hoping that the problem will just go away. A lot of times it does.

Sometimes it doesn't.

We then tend to try to do the absolute minimum to solve it. Most of the time we play the "too little, too late" game.

This often makes the problem get bigger.

The next step on a problem that refuses to just dry up and blow away is; "Goddammit, enough is fucking enough!"

A lot of problems are coming to a head and the "Goddammit, enough is fucking enough!" people are starting to grumble and make themselves heard.

Think about what this means if, in addition to all the other problems, Americans decide that the government is the main factor in causing these problems?

It's happened twice before here. Never ever think it cannot happen again.

Problems that the "Goddammit, enough is fucking enough!" people are concerned about.

Terrorism. Almost ready to decide, "Hmmmmmm, if all these terrorists are Moslems, then getting rid of all the Moslems sure seems to solve the problem."

Illegal immigrants. Most would not care if someone started shooting them. Many are willing to pull the trigger themselves.

Welfare. Eliminate the illegals, there will be jobs. Give someone a choice between starving and working, most will work. After doing the manual labor they will start noticing that educated people aren't in the fields with them. There's their motivation for getting their kids in school and learning.

Schools. People want their kids taught. They want talented, motivated people as teachers. They understand that the teacher's unions are an obstacle to getting talented motivated teachers in and untalented unmotivated people out. They understand that it's a government job and government employees shouldn't be telling the people what they want.

Government is the servant of the people, not the master. They understand that there are things that need to get done that only a government can do. They also understand that there are a multitude of things that the government is doing that, should government end its monopoly, the people would do at least as well (and probably better).

Crime. Remember how I mentioned vengeance? Americans are an eye for an eye type of people. We are also a people that feel that the punishment should be just. Life for a dime bag doesn't make sense, especially if murderers are being paroled with years left to serve.


Unions.  Americans are "honest day's wages for an honest day's work" kind of people.  We don't like seeing someone underpaid AND we don't like seeing someone overpaid.  We don't mind being overpaid ourselves but, being generous types, we often channel that into charity.  We don't like strong arm tactics.  We don't like coercion.  We don't like collusion and extortion.  Beginning to see why there's not a lot of sympathy for union workers who are typically overpaid, underworked, ungenerous people who engage in or have representatives who use strong arm tactics, coercion, collusion and extortion to become paid more, and work less.  With government jobs like teachers, cops and fireman; using our own money to do it!

The quiet types also understand responsibility. It is no more the guns fault for shooting the victim than the buses credit for getting you safely to work. Both acts require a person, a shooter and a driver respectively. They also understand that if piss all your money away on things that have nothing to do with food and shelter you are going to be hungry and cold. They also don't think that they should have to pay for food and shelter for people who choose to buy things other than sustenance before securing survival. They especially resent having so much taken from them that they cannot afford anything but survival while the people they support buy luxuries.

09 April 2011

Basis of Trade

I was reading Bill Whittle the other day, and he hit on a simple truth; Fair trade is simply giving something that someone else wants for something you want.  As long as you both get what you want, there is no problem.

If someone asks for more than I am willing to trade for something they have, again no problem.  I don't get what I want because they don't get what they want.

If I offer far more than they would have asked, once again no problem.  We are both getting what we want, they are just getting more than they expected.

If I offer far less than I expect to get the item for, and they accept, no problem.  We both get what we want, I am just getting more than expected.

If I pay far more for something than the previous or next guy, no problem.  There is nothing that says that value is absolute.  And a seller who cranks up the price because I belong to a group I am member of is telling me that they do not want my business.

Problems surface when I demand the item for less than the seller is willing to part with it, or the seller demands more than I am willing to pay and we are forced to make the sale anyway.

Imagine gasoline being $5.75 a gallon and having to buy 30 gallons a week regardless of how much you use.

This is great for the seller if the market value of a gallon of gas is less than $5.75, especially if very few customers buy 30 gallons of gas a week.
This is great for the buyer if the market value of a gallon of gas is more than $5.75 and they use 30 gallons a week.
It is better than ideal if market value of a gallon is more than $5.75 and you use less than 30 gallons, and you can sell your surplus.
It is ideal if the market value is $5.75 and they use 30 gallons a week anyway.
It is neutral if the market value is $5.75 and they use more than 30 gallons a week.
It is less than ideal if market value of a gallon is $5.75 and you use less than 30 gallons, but  you can sell your surplus.
It is less than ideal for the seller if the market value is more than $5.75 a gallon and many customers use more than 30 gallons a week.
It sucks for the seller if the market value is more than $5.75 a gallon, with many customers using more than 30 gallons a week and customers can sell their excesses to each other.
This sucks for the buyer if market value is less than $5.75 and they use less than 30 gallons a week regardless of being able to sell the excess.
This sucks for the buyer regardless of market value if they use less than 30 gallons a week and are not allowed to sell the excess, especially if they use far less than 30 gallons a week.
This sucks for the seller if the market value of a gallon is more than $5.75 and most customers use 30 gallons per week.

And there are other combinations and permutations I have not listed.

Now, if you enter into an agreement to buy 30 gallons a week at $5.75 a gallon for the next year, you have agreed to spend $8,790 and take delivery of 1,560 gallons of gas regardless of whether you can use or store that much (we'll assume that you can afford to spend $172.50 a week).  The person selling the gas has agreed to give you 1,560 gallons of gas for $8,790.  In this arraingement, you are hoping the price of a gallon goes higher than $5.75, and the seller is hoping the price falls below $5.75 because $5.75 is what is going to be spent for this transaction.  If the price goes higher, you can sell your gas for a profit, if it goes lower the seller makes a profit selling to you.  Welcome to the commodities market!

Now, imagine that gas sells for $5.75, but it's only $3.00 at the pump, with the government paying the seller $2.75 on every gallon.  This is a subsidy.  $3 a gallon?  What a deal!  Except, where does the government get $2.75 a gallon?  Your taxes, of course.  This is great if you pay fewer taxes than $2.75 times the gallons of gas you buy.  This sucks if  you pay more taxes than $2.75 times the gallons of gas you buy.  Notice that I said that "gas sells for" and not "gas costs"?  There are several commodities in the US where the price per unit is fixed and the government makes up the difference if the market value is below the fix point, corn for example.  The government pays the difference between the market value of corn and $2.50 a bushel.  So, even if corn is $0.01 a bushel, it sells at $2.50, with the government paying the farmer $2.49 and the buyer paying $0.01.  Why doesn't the buy have to pay $2.50?  Because if he did, he would buy from overseas where it's still $0.01!  Why not just charge a tarriff on the imported corn?  Because the farmer here can't live on the fair market value his crop produces, so a tarriff would drive him out of business and we'd be buying imported corn anyway.  The question here is: Is it worth it to keep US farmers farming?

Isn't economics fun?

08 April 2011

Since it's a week off...

Stingray of the Atomic Nerds reminds us when making our Buy-A-Gun Day purchase to avoid buying from places that use H-S Precision stocks or, if you must do business with someone who offers it, at least don't buy a gun with an H-S Precision stock on it.

Read the whole thing and follow the links.

Remington puts H.S. Precision stocks on their Model 700 VS SF II and Model 700 Sedero SF II rifles.

Savage offers H.S. Precision stocks on their Model 10FCP H.S. Precision, Model 10FCPXPH.S. Precision, Model 12LRPV, Model 12 Long Range Precision, Model 11GCNS and Model 111GCNS.

Marlin, Ruger and Winchester don't seem to offer it as an option.

Freedom Has Warts

Freedom is a topic near and dear to my heart.

It is the core of my religious belief, "Do as you will, harm none."

There is a down side to being free. You are free to fail. I will say it again, you are free to fail.

And if you are the failure, freedom sucks. The good side of this is that I am free to help you if I want. You are also free to refuse. It is your right to starve if you want.

Freedom can be offensive. If we were really free, I could tell a dirty joke in front of the secretary. Freedom means having a thick skin. You have a right to be offended, but not to force me to shut up.

Freedom carries responsibilities. The cliche is, "You cannot yell 'FIRE' in a crowded theatre when there is no fire." Yes I can; but I shouldn't. It is, at the very least, stealing a portion of the program from my fellow patrons.

This idea of freedom is the core of libertarianism.

Welfare is not freedom. It steals your right to fail. It robs me of the option of helping you. Welfare forces me to aid you whether you deserve the help or not.

Politically correct speech is not freedom. It robs me of the ability to say what I wish to say. By deliberately changing the meaning of words and phrases, you rob my words of the meaning I intend. And if I cannot say what I mean, I cannot mean what I say. And make no mistake, I will find a way to say what I mean. If you leave me no other method, I will use the forbidden words, like "nigger and cunt".

Forcing me to be a father is not freedom. Insisting that the woman has 100% of the decision about carrying a child to term contradicts the man's responsibilities. No rights, no responsibilities girls. Now, you have 100% of the rights, guess what percentage of the responsibility comes with that.

Forcing me to pay child support is not freedom. The man is not 100% responsible for the making of the child. He is 50%. If that confuses you, you need to buy a grade-school level biology text. Mommy, you were there too and willing, because rapists go to jail, not child support hearings.

Environmentalism is not freedom. What if I like manatee burgers? Your right to have a sea cow in your canal trumps my right to a tasty snack? Ever watch the ducks and geese flying over in the spring and fall? Don't thank the environmentalists or government for that, thank hunters. They did it on their own, because they want to kill ducks, and keep killing ducks forever in "unlimited" quantities.

There are more examples. The main point is most rights are negative, meaning that you cannot get between me and that right and are under no obligation whatsoever to aid me. This is completely different from a positive right, where you are compelled to give me what I am entitled to. Notice the difference between you cannot stop me and you must aid me. At the root of it, there are very few positive rights. An example of a positive right is when you have agreed to pay me for a service I render to you. Once I have completed this service, you are obligated to pay the agreed amount. The agreement creates a positive right for you to receive a service and a positive right for me to recieve money.

Freedom can lead to ugly things. You have the right to hate. You have the right to refuse service to people you deem undesirable. You have the right to force these people to sit in a particular place in your restaurant if they wish to be served. Freedom lets the market decide if your business thrives. If the undesirables decide to not bother with your rules and shop somewhere else and that means you lose too much business to stay open, so be it. Laws forcing business to allow the undesirables in or to forbid them from shopping there are not freedom. And in forbidding, they are eliminating the gem of free enterprise, the niche market.

I'll bet you are thinking I am talking about racism, don't you?

Nope, smoking. But now that I mention it, smokers are being treated like blacks in the south.

That's enough to think about for now.

Shooting at the police...

What I am asking in my earlier post is there to be a clear legal ruling about when it's legal for me to shoot a cop.  The answer cannot be never.

However; I am not seeking to blast the cops just for being cops.  Not any more than I want to shoot anyone else, for the same reasons.  A cop obeying the law is just as safe as a common citizen around me, that is: completely safe.

The question I want answered is pretty simple.  If I see someone raping a woman, it's legal to shoot them.  Is it still legal to shoot a cop who's raping a woman?

By the way; there are activities that the police do that have been deemed legal that will get me to shoot them.  No knock searches are among those.  Knocking on the door and showing me the warrant will get the police let in and allowed to search.  I might even make coffee.

07 April 2011

By the way...

You prick!  I don't own a car that gets 8 miles per gallon.  Guess what, even getting 24 miles per gallon is getting too expensive.

Every time you let the price of gas jack up a buck it will cost me $18 a tank more.

My transportation needs are fairly rigid.  That $18 will have to come from some other spending that's more flexible.  Like, say, entertainment.

Now I am bitter, angry, stuck at home and BORED.  I am no longer distracted from your idiocy.

Where do you think this will lead come november '12?

Rule of Law or Rule of Man

When is it legal for me to kill someone? The answers are readily available from numerous sources.

When is it legal for me to kill a policeman? Superficially, the circumstances where I can shoot Joe Nobody are the same, and the rules apply to shooting cops too. That is not how it works in practice. In practice, it is never legal to shoot a cop, ever.

When is it legal for a policeman to kill someone? Again, the police seem to be held to the same standards that I am. Once again, the practice is different from the theory. The police can shoot anyone they like and not be punished in a meaningful way. Being sent home for three months with pay is not a punishment.

I'm a person who feels that us common citizens have the right to own guns so that we may shoot the agents of the state should all other forms of redress fail. With that in mind, the circumstances where I, a common citizen, may begin shooting should be clearly defined. This serves two purposes, it lets me know when to start shooting, and it lets them know where the lines are.

I also have another radical reform idea. The standards where the police are allowed to use lethal force should be set a lot higher than the common person. As an agent of the state, the policeman can call more resources to bear than I can. And the loss of an individual officer is nowhere near as devastating to the state as the loss of an individual to a family. Currently the system is backwards, the state can kill someone because an individual officer "felt" threatened. If a common citizen should attempt this argument and the corpse has no weapon on it, common man becomes common convict.

Remember, it is not an individual shooting when a cop shoots. It. Is. The. State.

Yes, I know what I propose will make it more dangerous to be a policeman. Tough. There are many other fields hiring. The state MUST use more restraint than the individual and MUST use due process when meting out justice.

Alternatively, make the rules in practice be the same for both a private citizen and an officer of the law. Make it easier for me to shoot and harder for him. One little caveat, if the cop shoots and is justified, he is not a cop ANYWHERE for a year. And he is not paid by any government agency for that year either. He will be just like me, for a year. That lets him defend himself if he needs to, and forces him to think very hard about pulling the trigger because the consequences are extreme.

06 April 2011

I've been most everywhere, man.


visited 36 states (72%)
Create your own visited map of The United States



visited 18 states (8%)
Create your own visited map of The World

EDIT:
I've noticed this little pairing of maps in several of the blogs I read.  I followed the hat-tips back; TO ME!  This is my first meme ever!

Happy Dance!

05 April 2011

Blame

While we're tossing blame about over the Koran burning...

Some obscure preacher in Florida burns a Koran.

This has an effect half a world away and some UN personnel are murdered over it.

Who told them?

My next door neighbor burns all sorts of things in his burn barrel.  I suppose a Koran could have ended up in there; but I have no idea because he didn't brag about it and nobody ran to transmit that he had to the third world just as fast as the photons could be bounced off the satellite.

The media giving Rev Jones the spotlight is why the dark-age people of Afghanistan were even aware of the burning.  If they'd ignored Rev Jones there'd have been no word to send.

BUT.

Rev Jones' little stunt killed nobody.

Telling the locals in Afghanistan killed nobody.

The locals killed someone and for the flimsiest of reasons.  Even more barbaric, they didn't even take out their anger on the person who offended them; they attacked people who had nothing to do with the burning at all.

This is why we should not bother with the place below 30,000 feet MSL.

That MIGHT be a terrorist camp, there's two bricks touching... GBU-31 on the way.  Lather, rinse, repeat.

To deal with things in a civilized manner, there has to be a civilization on both sides.  A society is not necessarily a civilization.

I support the M.I. answer.  I support the Curtis LeMay method.

Dissonance

I love watching the media contradicting themselves.

It was fun a few years ago, when someone nearly managed to smuggle some real live AKM's from China, watching the media try to explain why those guns were so much worse than the semi-auto clones which had been established as being as bad as it could get.

It's kinda interesting watching them condemn Rev. Terry Jones as being wrong for burning a Koran while just a couple of years ago telling us how burning a US flag was hunky dory.

It's educational watching them ignore or praise President Obama for doing the same things that they condemned President Bush for.

Wait, that's not dissonance, that's hypocrisy.

03 April 2011

Blog Meet

Added a couple more faces to names.

Unix Jedi and Weer'd Beard.

Had a great time at Tampa Bay Brewing, good brew, good food.

01 April 2011

Repeat of history?

Wilson Tactical has introduced a 7.62 round based on a necked up 5.56 case.

In January AAC introduced a 7.62 round based on a necked up 5.56 case.

This reminds me so much of the 6.8x43mm SPC vs 6.5 Grendel I can't express it.

I guess gun people need more things to disagree strongly about.

Celebrating the Me!

Today is All Fool's Day!

The day of my people, the fools!

We unionized and went on strike to get a Fool's History Month.  They agreed just to get us to shut up, but we were fooled into signing for just the day.

Typical, huh?