30 August 2010

Elitist bastard post of the day...

http://scienceblogs.com/dispatches/2010/08/the_rights_ignorance_of_islami.php

uh yeah...

The right is ignorant of Islam...

Dude, I went to Iraq. I've seen it first hand. I know enough to know that Islam is not monolithic, and that tribe and family ties are often stronger than religious ties. However, this elitist bastard just doesn't get it.

It doesn't matter that the Carmelite Nuns weren't Lutheran like the vast majority of Germany, the Catholic Church recognized that Auschwitz was not an appropriate place for the Carmelite Nuns.

Ground Zero isn't hallowed by any given faith, it is hallowed by blood spilled in tragedy. Only one church was damaged in the attack, a Greek Orthodox Church, that is still facing legal problems.

Auschwitz is hallowed by the blood of the innocent, so is Ground Zero. Rebuilding what was there before is one thing, putting up a mosque is another.

Is it legal? Yes. Is it appropriate? No. And saying that "the right is ignorant" doesn't magically make the inappropriate palatable.

29 August 2010

Management

Someone asked "How could anyone screw up an economy with the growth potential of California?"

And the answer is this, never underestimate the depths of human stupidity. Or as others have put it:

"Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity."
-Anonymous
"Only two things are infinite- the universe and human stupidity- and I'm not sure about the former." -Albert Einstein
"Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and consciencious stupidity." -Martin Luther King- Jr.
"Success in almost any field depends more on energy and drive than it does on intelligence. This explains why we have so many stupid leaders." -Sloan Wilson
"Whenever a man does a thoroughly stupid thing- it is always from the noblest motives." -Oscar Wilde

The list goes on and on, but most telling would be simply "How could anyone screw up the economy of a nation with the growth potential of Russia?"

This is why China is so scary, they learned from Mao's "Great Leap Forward" and have been steadily de-regulating their economy. Hong Kong, the worlds shining jewel of "Laissez Faire" is the goose that laid the golden egg, and China did not gut it.

So what can we learn from Russia, California, and China? Economic freedom is prosperity and prosperity is political power. Russia and California have been mismanaged by the politics of envy, and China is being managed by "enlightened self interest" or as Ayn Rand would call it "the virtue greed".

Bottom line is this, do you want a government that automatically assumes you are incompetent to handle your own affairs? If so, you are a Dem, socialist, communist, or whatever leftist label fits.

28 August 2010

ubu52

Over at Joe Huffman's a commenter "ubu52" claims that people have a right to other peoples property.

I really don't have a lot of time to post right now. I work for myself and I don't have a 9 to 5 schedule so this may be all you'll get for awhile...

On the old thread, Joe asked "How is it that you determine truth from falsity?" I wanted to discuss this further before but I asked that you define what "truth" is for me because truth can have many meanings. (And I know we are getting into philosophy here.)

Lyle: ""We all have the right to food. You have plenty of food and Bob over here doesn't, so we're taking your food by force." Meaning you don't have the right to your food, and by extension, no one else does either - all food belongs to the government, essentially, as all "rights" come FROM the government." BINGO! "Human Rights" do come from government. The UN is essentially a world governing body. That's why "Human Rights" and "Natural Rights" are two different things.

RauĆ°bjorn: "Even the American concept of rights is a political construct." Correct. "Language shapes the way we think..." Totally. That's why these discussions tend to go on to the point that everyone thinks I'm the idiot. I tend to try and shorten them because I know that discussing philosophy fully can take a long long time -- but I get the feeling that that is what this crowd wants. They want to discuss different philosophical constructs.

So... First we must agree on what "truth" is before we can even start to discuss "falsity."


I've emphasized two passages to point out where ubu52 differs from reality. If all government went away we would lose our "human rights" according to ubu52. We wouldn't however lose our "natural rights". That is why any "human right" that violates a "natural right" isn't a right at all, it is an obligation, privilege, or perk, and in a just world it is properly called "charity".

When someone else provides something that you should earn for yourself, it is "charity". Whether that is under the threat of force or not is what makes "charity" different from "theft".

Now lastly, if we can't AGREE ON TRUTH then we can't agree on anything. If I say black is black and ubu52 says "no, black is merely the darkest shade of gray, and white is merely the lightest shade of grey, therefore black and white are really the same" we are obviously not using the same standard. My standard is fixed, black being black and white being white. Ubu52's gray standard that black and white are both gray is fundamentally different, and fundamentally wrong. If black and white are both gray, why do we have a separate word for each?

But that is simply an illustrative argument for the following. If government is the source of rights, then the government can take those "rights" away. Don't believe me? Reference; China, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Rwanda, Yugoslavia, USSR, and Burma.

Government can and will take your life. Where the hell are your "rights" then?

Here is a base truth; Government does not create, government meddles in the form of regulation and redistribution of human activity. If ubu52 cannot fathom that, then ubu52 will hopefully forget how to breath, or move to Tehran.

27 August 2010

Saiganov a success

Saiga 308 with 20" bbl and Tapco trigger.

Shoots well.

ProMag polymer magazine only experienced one fail to feed. Could be that the mag is still new, but other than one hiccup it performed properly.

The Nimrod scope on top was easy to zero and reset the turrets.

25 August 2010

Violence is Power

Violence is power. Violence can be used to oppress others or break the chains of tyranny. Capacity for violence is inate in every human being, although some choose for personal moral reasons that violence is bad.

Saying that violence is bad is like saying that "fire is bad".

Why do Muslims riot? Because they know that violence is power. If violence gets them what they want, then it is a legitimate way to get what they want.

A rapist uses violence to get what they want. Ever try to reason with a rapist? Ever try to reason with a mugger?

Those who would disarm you, try to diminish your capacity for violence with some "moral" argument, are cowards at best and criminal accomplices at worst.

Conservatives have a great capacity for violence, but also incredible restraint. I pray that when it comes time to not be restrained, to unleash violence, that we remember how.

24 August 2010

Bwahahahaha *gulp* hahahahah *tears* haha *snort*

Tam found this little gem at cnn.com "The Ten Things Obama must do in Ten Weeks"

Ronald Reagan, known as the "great communicator," put communications front-and-center, Morey said.

"He focused and simplified the message. He communicated it. He built a consensus. He defined America's role in the world, and that's the challenge here," he said.

Once Obama has honed his message, he should take it directly to the people in news conferences, said Morey, vice chairman of the Core Strategy Group.

"Nobody was better at that. I'm not sure why somebody with that intellect and those communications talents should be so tightly scripted."


STFU. Srsly?

Have you heard the "Teleprompter of the United States" actually talk without a script? Srsly?

This is Obama worship plain and simple, and Mr. Morey, you are still drinking the koolaid. Hope that you get a nice trip on Hale-Bopp....

21 August 2010

Gravel on corners...

There are two types of riders, those that have gone down and those that will go down. The last time I saw a rider go down was from a patch of gravel at the end of an off ramp.

You can be going along just fine, conditions perfect, but conditions change with every rotation of your tires on the road.

The state of mind, concentrating on nothing and everything, has to be some sort of meditation.

18 August 2010

Investment not income?

I was arguing (something I do less regularly) about the economics of military verses civilian aircraft.

Alan stated that military aircraft do not have to turn a profit. I countered with examples of military aircraft in civilian use (specifically the Ch-47 Chinook).

This led to a discussion about how aircraft companies can continually lose money and yet remain in business.

I am not an economist, nor did I stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night, but I do know things about energy flow. Bear with me here.

All life exists on an energy gradient. From high energy state to low energy state. Your body takes in high energy molecules like sugars, fats, and oxygen and turns them into low energy carbon dioxide. Conversely plants take water and carbon dioxide and use photons to make sugars. All life depends on energy.

Money is the equivalent of energy. Companies have a continual need to consume money to stay alive, such as equipment maintenance, payroll, etc. But just like a living organism, companies can either take low energy molecules (such as raw materials) and create high energy molecules (like consumer goods, software, or intellectual property) and in doing so exchange their work for increased money.

This is a look at the influx and outgo of energy (or money). Organisms don't care if a sugar molecule came from algae or sugar cane. Money is the same way. Whether a company turns a profit or not, it will go under without a steady diet of money. That money has to come from somewhere, and that means that someone has to keep that company going. Whether that is a parent corporation or line of investors or even customers doesn't matter, the company has to consume money (energy) in order to survive.

Now Alan continues to make the point that unprofitable companies exist for various reasons such as a tax write off for a larger corporation or to provide a sole service for a parent corporation.

However, that parent corporation has a use for the money losing company. Whether that relationship is symbiotic or parasitic is a moot point. A continual influx of investment capital into a company is not legally "income", but that is only for legal accounting purposes.

The more I dig into our economic laws and policies, the more I understand how our current "crisis" is nothing more than man made chaos.

Greener than thou....

"Whisky-powered cars could help Scotland avoid having to use those forest-trashing biofuels."

Ah, those "forest trashing biofuels"....

It's like they are trying to be more Catholic than the Pope. Or like Austria in WWII filling the ranks of the SS to be more German than Berliners.

Crazy. But "green" is no longer a movement, it is a religion.

17 August 2010

When cameras are outlawed...

Only Outlaws will have cameras.

I've been reading "Photography is not a Crime" regularly now, and it seems to make my blood boil every time. Check the blogroll.

First, citizens are not serfs. A public servant is a SERVANT, whether they wear a badge and a gun or not.

One of my previous blog posts, "The Four Types of Soldiers/Cops" comes to mind.

1. Those that need a job.
2. Those that follow family tradition.
3. Those who believe in the cause.
4. Those who want to bully other people.

The fourth type are the ones who will arrest you for "Contempt of Cop".

But the real problem is that the other three types routinely close ranks to protect the fourth type. I've spent the last nine months of my life kicking bad apples out of the Army for everything from drug use to child abuse. I will never close ranks to protect someone who has proven themselves unworthy of the public trust.

I couldn't look at myself in the mirror if I did.

How can these cops look at themselves in the mirror? Clearly there needs to be a massive increase in legal studies for Law Enforcement Officers. How can you uphold the law if you don't know the law?

Second, just because Johnny has a wife and two kids doesn't mean that he is a good guy who deserves to keep his job. I've kicked out a lot of guys who let their families down. I'm not proud of it, but my Army is better for it.

Maybe that's why the military has such high ratings of public trust? I don't know.

But I do know that Cops need to start feeling the heat when they violate the civil rights of citizens. Whether that be 1st, 2nd, 4th, or 5th amendment rights.

16 August 2010

Iraqi Security

Iraqi Army needs ten years of training.

The troop levels in Iraq continue to decline. The violence in Iraq is "on the rise" but relatively pretty good compared to when it was really bad.

One of the goals for US withdrawl was to get the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) "good enough" to handle their own business. Because anyone who spends time in Iraq quickly comes to the realization that the ISF will not be a world class military/police force any time soon.

The real question that nags me is this; if Iraq becomes a failed state will I have failed in my mission?

15 August 2010

Gun Camp

Tam has been comparing/contrasting various gun school videos on her blog. http://booksbikesboomsticks.blogspot.com/2010/08/right-and-wrong.html

What the "run and gun" school of thought gets right is making people feel like badasses.

What the "run and gun" school of thought gets wrong is that whole actual fighting thing.

Gunfights are more "reaction" than "action". So if your instructor spends 95% of the time teaching OODA loop enhancement and threat detection, getting your weapon to bear from normal carrying position, then you are doing good.

And remember, todays training wins tomorrows battle.

Brass Prep

Yesterday I tumbled five loads of 308 brass. I think there are still two loads to go before I'm done with the lot.

Next up, annealing.

14 August 2010

The Racist Party

The idea that the Republican party is the party of racists is something that has gone on for far too long.

http://cubachi.com/2010/08/11/harry-reid-cant-believe-im-a-hispanic-republican/


After all, black conservatives are "Uncle Tom's" according to the NAACP

And Harry Reid (Racist Democrat) can't understand how "people of hispanic heritage" could be Republican.

Of course, this being the internet, someone else has already done the hard work of documenting the Racist Democrats.

09 August 2010

Losing sight of reality

I found this article over at redorbit.com about potential benefits of "Cap and Trade" legislation.

The money quote, of course, is this: To understand why poorer households may fare better than richer ones, consider that those in the lowest income echelons tend to derive a larger portion of their incomes from government programs such as welfare or Social Security. These programs are all indexed to inflation, and because the cap-and-trade measures are expected to add to the cost-of-living index, those increases would be compensated by the adjustments.

The impacts of the additional costs would also be mitigated by mechanisms built into the bills. Among these provisions is one that would distribute dividends to households or regions likely to feel the greatest impacts of the carbon charges. “One way or the other,” Reilly says, “all of the proposals actually benefit low-income households, because the allowance allocation they receive is greater than their increases in energy costs and effects on income.”


To which I have to ask, "On which planet?"

Northeasts Poorest Hardest Hit due to fuel oil costs.
Or how about the California Electricity Crisis?

Every time they tinker with the market, impose artificial constraints and discourage growth the poor are always the hardest hit. But being a liberal is a disease, like being schizophrenic, you don't live in reality.

15-6 Briefing

Today I participated in a "Commander's Inquiry into Accidental Death" briefing to a gold star wife.

It was tough. There was a chain of decisions all leading up to the event, and each decision itself was benign, but the sum total lead to her husband's death.

Because sometimes in war stuff just happens.

08 August 2010

Movie Review: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

The rape scene was well done in that it displayed the utter horror of the act.

Great film, not for kids.

Looking forward to the two sequels that used the same cast.

04 August 2010

Movie Review: The Sorcerer's Apprentice

The Sorcerer's Apprentice fits the same niche as "Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief" as far as plot complexity and visual effects.

A good critic could take either apart quite rapidly, but in the end movies are about escapist recreation and not intellectual stimulation. I can't remember the last time I walked out of a movie and said "Boy, I sure feel smarter for watching that!"

And I don't expect to ever have that experience. Hollywood has the formula for "Summer Blockbuster" down to a very strict formula, kind of like the "creaming method" for bakers.

First off the "Summer Blockbuster" is going to be a variation of "The Hero's Journey". From "Star Wars" to "Terminator 2: Judgment Day" we have a hero doing something at the end of the movie that he couldn't do at the beginning of the movie. Other acceptable variations are "Hero's Sacrifice" (ala "Saving Private Ryan" and "The Dirty Dozen").

Anyways, "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" is good escapist fun. Nothing more, nothing less, but well worth the ticket price.