31 December 2010

Joan Peterson, 90% myth, chooses to believe lies and chooses to repeat them.

I wrote, anonymously of course, and explained that the 90% myth of Mexico was wrong, and provided numbers.  Joan wrote this in response.
I choose to believe the Washington Post whose reporters have done a stellar job of reporting on something that needs to be exposed. Your numbers are just wrong according to all the reliable sources that have reported on this.
Well, let us take a look at what the Government Accountability Office has to say.
In order to determine the geographic distribution of firearms seized in Mexico, we obtained data from CENAPI on seizures, by Mexican federal entity. According to CENAPI data, a total of 29,824 firearms were seized in Mexico in 2008. In order to ascertain the geographic distribution of firearms seized in Mexico that were traced by ATF, we obtained data from ATF linking firearms traced to the Mexican federal entities where they were seized. In fiscal year 2008, ATF traced 7,198 firearms seized in Mexico. Of these, 6,854 were linked to specific states or the Federal District. However, 344 firearms were traced in fiscal year 2008 that could not be linked to a specific state where they may have been seized. We excluded these from our analysis.
We ranked the Mexican states and Federal District by the number of firearms seized according to the data provided by CENAPI, and we ranked them a second time according to the trace data provided by ATF. We then compared the two sets of data using a correlation analysis. See figure 9 below. The correlation coefficient for the data was 0.85, indicating a strong positive correlation.
In 2008 according to CENAPI the Mexican Government seized 29,824 firearms.  I don't know about you, but the 90% myth would have you believe that 27,000 of those came from the US.  Instead 87% of those submitted for tracing were traced back to the US.  If you go to the end of the GAO report you'll find those numbers repeated as well.  At the very end of the GAO report you'll find a letter from DHS requesting that the 87% be further explained with hard numbers as 87% alone is misleading.

This is for just one year (the latest year that I can readily find hard data, and I mean real numbers, not percentages).  

The Washington Post is where Joan Peterson chooses to get her information.  I can't change her choice, but I can put the truth out there.  And no matter how much they repeat a lie, we can repeat the truth over and over again.  And if these numbers don't make "common sense" then Joan Peterson better get into remedial math classes immediately.

Reasoned Discourse

Joan Peterson wrote this:
P.S. Chris- are you overthinking everything? For goodness sake. This can be simple. You just seem to have to write volumes about everything and you are one upping me for every word I say. That does not bode well for future "discussions" No one wants a smart ^%$$ outdoing them whenever they open their mouth or write what they are thinking. I am a pretty sincere person and I'm here to write for more people than just you. Your tendency is to dominate the conversation and kill the topic with way too much information. Keep it simple.
Maybe Joan needs it simple so she can understand it?  I think she wants to keep the conversation "simple" so that it can be "emotionally appealing" instead of logical.

Joan, your inability to understand complex interactions sounds like a personal problem to me.

ROTC should stay gone, cause soldiers are icky

Remember all those liberals that opposed Military Recruiters and ROTC on college campuses because Gays and Lesbians couldn't serve openly?  Remember how the doors of acceptance were supposed to fly open once DADT was repealed?  Remember, you can't spell "liberal" without "liar"

Washington Post OPED title:  

'Don't ask, don't tell' has been repealed. ROTC still shouldn't be on campus.

Condition 3 carry

I came across this here


And I'll add in my $0.02: carrying in Condition 3 is a horrendous idea. Most encounters in which a concealed firearm might need to be employed happen at close distance ("bad breath" distance), and the odds of you being able to draw your pistol from concealment, chamber a round, and bring the gun to bear on your assailant are very slim. It's an unnecessary step that's completely unneeded with modern semi-automatic firearms - it's a holdover from the days where carrying in Condition 2 could result in a discharge if the gun were dropped. If you are uncomfortable with carrying a 1911-style handgun in Condition 1, then carry a different handgun.

Carrying in "Condition 3" is a VERY GOOD idea for ANY pistol.  And I will explain why.

If you are in a situation where drawing your firearm is justified, having to rack the slide will SLOW YOU DOWN.  Slowing you down will allow your reflex action to catch up to the OODA loop and put your brain back into the decision making loop.

Why?  Because 21 feet is "halitosis" range, and the average concealed carrier cannot draw and fire their pistol faster than an attacker can close the distance.  It is because of the reduced distance that many "gun people" even "firearm instructors" advocate carrying with a round in the pipe and no safety on.  So if you can't respond in time, why carry as if you can?

I'm not saying that you should never carry a round in the pipe, if you are going undercover into a dangerous situation it would make sense.  However if you are carrying in your normal daily life, you are unlikely to encounter a "prison yard rush" from inside 21 feet.  Unless you are being targeted for assassination by the Yakuza.  But if you aren't being targeted by organized crime, you probably don't need to be ready to respond to a prison yard rush.

It sounds counter intuitive to slow down, but going for your gun should never be your first response.  If you do have to defend your life, or the life of someone else, a gun is simply a tool that provides a specific set of options.  Using your brain first is better than using a gun first.

To sum up, if you are carrying with a round in the pipe it does you no good inside of 21 feet.  Even if it did do you good inside 21 feet you have to have the OODA loop to match.  If you have such good Situational Awareness that you can detect threats at the 21 foot threshold you have enough time to carry in "Condition 3".  And if you don't have the SA to detect threats at 21 feet, it doesn't matter what "Condition" you carry your firearm in.

Work on your brain first, upgrade your awareness, keep your brain in the loop.  The extra half second it takes to rack the slide isn't a game changer.

30 December 2010

What people are saying...

The Army just cleared three Officers for the battle of Wanat.


The military has always and will always protect the commissioned corps. The enlisted corps has always and will always be the ones that pay the price for the screw ups of the commissioned corps. Nothing new here. That's just the way it is. Officers are the sacred cows and the enlisted are the sacrificed sheep.


The real soldiers are cannon fodder for those who profit from war, cannon fodder for the politicians, cannon fodder for the officers, and cannon fodder for the military industrial complex. When will this stop? When people wake up and stop volunteering to go on useless war adventures that serve no purpose but to line the pockets of the rich, support the politically ambitious, and grow the military industrial complex. America has participated in more wars than any other country on the planet . . . that ought to tell you something . . . the problem is not over there, it is right here.


This is a bunch of crap. It doesn't sound even reasonable to blame the platoon commander who is dead, by the way, for the deaths of nine soldiers. Somebody higher up screwed up and did not provide the support these guys needed to adequately defend themselves. I.E. Air Support, artillery etc. Why were these people left out there on their own? Does this sound like a PLATOON problem? Sounds like a command and control problem to me. I want to hear more details on exactly how the blame is shifted to the platoon level.
 
The Enlisted to Officer ratio is a matter of intense debate in some circles.  It has even been proposed that the officer corps be shrunk to previous historical records.  However the problem has been historically that too many officers leave as is, and that officer retention numbers didn't even change by offering a $35,000 retention bonus.
 
Right now the current Army Officer to Enlisted ratio is right around 1:6.6 even though the total military O:E is closer to 1:5.2 (The Navy and Airforce having the lowest OE ratios).  The problem is that the bulk of those officers are taken up in "Echelons Above Reality".
 
The bulk of our Enlisted forces in the Army are Infantry and Field Artillery.  Those gentlemen are largely in "maneuver units" which are the very essence of combat power on the ground.  In those units you are going to have around a 1:10 Officer to Enlisted ratio.  The death toll from 2008 has a 1:10 O to E ratio, reflecting that Officers are dieing on par with their positions in tactical units.
 
The truth is that those of us who have worn both stripes and bars know that Officer life is no picnic.  Yes the pay is "better" but the hours are longer and the crap you have to deal with is insane.  You have theater level issues pushed down to the company and platoon level, and sometimes the only thing you can do is mitigate the tactical risk as best you can.

Amygdala in the blogs again.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amygdala
http://crooksandliars.com/susie-madrak/looks-conservatives-are-just-big-scar

Of course the leftists would immediately assume that a large Amygdala is a sign of fear.

Unfortunately it is also a sign of creativity and memory formation.

Maybe this is why Leftists seem to be so ignorant of history?  They don't have the Amygdala to form the necessary memories to be cognizant of history?

That would explain quite a bit.

Especially since amygdala size has been linked to relationships. http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2010/dec/26/social-life-brain-amygdala . Just imagine those poor leftists, stuck with their small amygdalas, unable to form logical memories, socially awkward and isolated, forced like Sisyphus to try the same failed ideas over and over again.

Pity the poor disadvantaged leftists.

1911

I came across this quote about the 1911 by "GunNutMegger".

It’s a 100-year old design. It needs tools to disassemble. It has unreliable magazines. It is finicky about ammo. And, as a single-action pistol, it is unsafe for 95% of its users to carry.
And  while the 1911 is a 100 year old design, so is the m98.  The m98 is still manufactured, and still preferred by people who trust their lives to the rifle they carry.  Age means time tested.

The 1911 needs no tools other than a spent shell casing to disassemble.  http://www.sightm1911.com/lib/tech/toolbox.htm

Every firearm that uses magazines has "unreliable magazines" at some point.   They wear out, and while I use Chip McCormick 8 round mags as by choice I have also had equally good results from Italian MecGar mags and even Springfield GI 7 round mags.  Even Glock mags wear out.  This is really a "non-issue".

Finicky about ammo?  Another non-issue.  The only pistols I know that aren't too finicky about their fodder are revolvers, bolt action, or break action pistols.  All auto loaders will like one type of ammo over another.

And people have been carrying single action pistols for longer than you've been alive .  95% of people can carry a single action pistol just fine thank you.  The 1911 wasn't the longest serving pistol in our Armed forces because it was overly complicated to master.  Do I really need to link to the "Only One in this room qualified to carry a Glock 40"?  To point out that there are idiots even in Law Enforcement?

There are limitations to the 1911 platform.  It is heavy for one, but is it as bad as "GunNutMegger" thinks?  Probably not.

29 December 2010

The Mexican Gun Taco

Joan Peterson, wrote this little gem of wisdom....
Why does common sense take a back seat to the facts? Ask the NRA leadership. Ask President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder. Ask your own Congressman or Senator. You will find the answer in the skewed influence wielded by the gun lobby that is actually costing lives in another country. This is unacceptable and shameful.

For once I completely agree with Joan, but obviously not in the way she thinks.  

If Americans didn't want drugs, then the street market value for black market drugs would not finance the Drug Cartels.


Because this isn't a "gun problem".  Finland and Switzerland don't have a "gun problem".  This is a drug problem.  The NRA will tell you, President Obama will tell you, and even Eric Holder will tell you.  


We need to legalize drugs NOW, in order to lower violence in Mexico.


Because Canada doesn't have this problem, but then again Vancouver has a freakin' "needle exchange" for addicts.  Obviously Canada's reduced violence is due to their relaxed drug laws.  It is only common sense.

Beer Review

http://www.widmer.com/beer_brothersreserve.aspx

This beer is teh awezum.  Tis 1337.

I have never experienced more flavor in a beverage.  Evah.

28 December 2010

Why I'm not counting on a military pension.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/40791768//

Remember kids, anyone who wants the government to handle your retirement is not looking out for your best interest.

27 December 2010

Internet Commandos round two

I know that Aimpoint vs. EOTech is a Chevy/Ford debate.  There is no end to it, only user preference.

This pearl of wisdom, quite the gem actually, was put forth by "Sturmgewerhe"


If you're making life and death decisions based on refusing to take part in a global economy... well, that's just crazy talk. I would be willing to bet more than one tiny digital part in the EOTech is made in Asia, or elsewhere. So who really cares? I don't. I buy what works

Well, if  "Sturmgewerhe" is the same one as the "Military Arms Channel" Sturmgewerhe then his name is Tim, and he is a former Marine.

Internet commandos come in all sizes and backgrounds.  At least his youtube channel wasn't for "elite team fighter".  That would have truly been embarrassing.

Manning and D'Cruz

I've been thinking about the differences between PFC Manning and Cadet D'Cruz.  My connection to both individuals is fairly tenuous, but on my blog I have expressed support for PFC Manning's continued Prevention of Injury order, and support for Mr. D'Cruz's challenge to buy a handgun.

The difference between the two is that PFC Manning's record of misconduct is a matter of public record.  The statists who did the hit piece on Mr. D'Cruz were stuck pulling individual quotes off of his facebook page and pictures of his halloween costume to try to paint him as a disturbed individual.

So I do not believe I'm confusing the issue with the man.  Whether or not PFC Manning leaked classified documents to wikileaks isn't the issue, the fact that his conduct justifies his confinement conditions is the issue.  No matter how the left would like to portray him as a "political prisoner".

Am I confusing the issue with Mr. D'Cruz?  No, any 18 year old with a record as clean as his and a desire to increase individual freedom would get my support as well.

25 December 2010

Merry Christmas Bradley Manning

Lately a lot of people have been raising concerns about PFC Bradley Manning's experience in the Brig.

Let me explain to you exactly why his treatment is justified for his continued well being.

PFC Manning was demoted for striking another soldier.  This is a known propensity for violence and makes him a poor candidate for general population.

PFC Manning has a past history of deliberate behaviors to avoid deployment.  At one point he claimed to be pending a "behavior discharge".

PFC Manning's behavior was so outrageous even over the internet that "Lamo the former hacker" turned informant on him.

This is an individual who had a very hard time fitting in with regular soldiers in the regular Army.  Given his history of violence to others and himself his Prevention of Injury order makes sense.

Let's take a look at Manning's own words,
"Ive been isolated so long . . . i just wanted to figure out ways to survive . . . smart enough to know whats going on, but helpless to do anything . . . no-one took any notice of me," he wrote at one point. Another time, he wrote: "im a wreck."
In one particularly poignant message, Manning wrote: "my family is non-supportive . . . im losing my job . . . losing my career options . . . i dont have much more except for this laptop, some books, and a hell of a story."

Those words were written before he was confined.

I'm happy to say that right now there are plenty of people who care deeply about the welfare of PFC Bradley Manning, and they are guards.

If you are really concerned about PFC Manning's health and welfare, head here for the contact info for the Quantico Brig.

Bloggeroid test

First test of blog app and swype keyboard.

Merry Christmas

Have a great day.

24 December 2010

That syncing feeling...again...

Just because your laptop runs Linux and your new smartphone runs Linux doesn't mean that they will play nice together.

I couldn't get Rhythmbox to even recognize the Samsung Galaxy S until I added rhythmboxplugins and syncopated through the synaptec package manager.

Now I'm actually syncing.  Much easier fix than getting an iPhone to sync with rhythmbox.  How easy was that?  Got the device and computer talking with less than six hours worth of work for Android...couldn't get it done in 6 days with the iPhone.

23 December 2010

Thoughts on cloud computing

Back in the day, mainframe computers were the business and technical solution for digitizing business.  The cost of mainframes moved a lot of businesses to the Client/Server model. The bulk of computing is done on the client PC, and the server does backup, network sharing

Microsoft, Apple, and Google have been trying to do "web apps" and "cloud computing" solutions for Apple IOS and Google Chrome OS (Apple allowed native Apps when it became clear that web apps were not ready for the mass market).  This is the same model as the old "dumb terminal/Mainframe" model that is really now only a specialized solution for some businesses.

So now native apps reign supreme, and yet the big names in software solutions are still looking to cloud computing for the "next gen" in data processing.

This will fail for one simple reason.  Moore's law.  The cost of creating "smart" clients that can process their own data continues to decline while the throughput technology (bandwidth) has remained relatively static.  The first computer I built from the ground up was an 800 mhz Athlon box in 1999, now smartphones are coming out with 1 ghz processors and the speed will only increase.

Bandwidth is really going to be the determining issue in whether cloud computing catches on in the mainstream.  I know that you can now do 300 mbps wireless, cool.  But gigabit ethernet has been around for over a decade.  And even the 4g network isn't enough of a pipeline to support that 45 megabyte powerpoint presentation that you need to modify.

So the processing power of mobile devices will continue to increase (Moore's Law) faster than the bandwidth available to those mobile devices.  When you look at the problem in this manner, cloud computing is not a solution, only an attempt by "big tech" to lock in a customer base to their "cloud solution".

But if you allow me to hedge my bets, I suspect that "home cloud computing" will become more and more mainstream for both average consumers and business consumers as well.  Why would a bank use Google or Microsoft cloud when they can set up their own cloud where they control the security?  Remember, the cloud won't be used for processing power (Moore's Law) but it may replace the "client/server" relationship.

How cool would that be?  Instead of setting up a home network, you set up a home cloud?

Technology predictions...

Ten years ago I predicted that Linux would displace Windows as the most common operating system.

I was right but mostly wrong.  I was wrong because Windows still has dominant market share for Personal Computers.  I was right because the Android smartphone OS is the dominant operating system for smartphones. 

Even Apple IOS is *nix based, and I am happy to report that users are often completely unaware of the base software on their smart devices.  Of course if technology is working properly, the average end user will be blissfully unaware of the details.

BTW, got a Samsung Galaxy S to replace my iPhone 3G.  I'm very happy, I have a smartphone that has a user replaceable battery and expandable microSD slot.  Android is visually "busier" than Apple IOS but the functionality is on par.

Haven't "rooted" the Samsung yet, will probably get around to that when I run up against AT&T's limits on apps.

22 December 2010

Fun facts to piss off a hippy

There are more college students in the US at any given time than members serving in the Armed Forces.  By the numbers it is easier to get into college than the military.

Unfortunately 75% of the military targeted population are ineligible to join the military because of obesity, criminal record, or lack of a high school diploma.

Double Unfortunately when 25% of those eligible to join fail the ASVAB, that high school diploma thing is looking less and less valuable.  Especially since the number of college freshmen taking remedial classes is bumping up to 1 in 5.  Of course that is a national average, some states are doing much worse.

It is time to take back our education system.

21 December 2010

Net Neutrality

I'm against it.

Because the Internet is designed to route around censorship.

See "The Streisand Effect".

Therefore we do not need big brother to fix a non-existent problem.

Having a plan...

Last month I had a one on one interview with my branch manager.  We sat down and I introduced myself, explained what my tentative plan was for my career, and the first thing my manager said was "awesome, you have a plan."

I said, "No, this is really just a tentative plan depending on where/when the Army tosses me."  and he replied, "This is still more than 95% of your peers have planned."

And that left me dumbfounded.  We are all Captains in the US Army, college graduates and most of us combat veterans.  How the hell could we NOT have plans?

The answer is that a lot of people are used to having a plan laid out by someone or something else.  And the bulk of my peers are a product of the Nintendo generation, and they are used to having the school, college, Army timeline.  But now they are at a point in their careers where they have some choices to make, and if they don't make them, those choices will be made for them.

And the life lesson here is that failing to plan is handing your planning over to someone else, someone who doesn't know what you want, what you are good at, or any other consideration.  Don't give someone else that power over you.

Have a plan.  Even if it is a tentative plan, something beats up on nothing every time.

20 December 2010

What is wrong with this picture?


The answer, if you didn't see it for yourself right away, is that the vast majority of long term record stations are GEOGRAPHICALLY ISOLATED.

That means you cannot draw a global comparison between NEW data sets (as new instrument stations come on line) and old data sets.  For example, if you go the GISS web site you will see that some years are truly local (pretty much everything from 1880 to 1900) because the global average temperature for January isn't -30 celcius (because it is the middle of summer in the Southern Hemisphere).

The other big problem that I see is that global warming alarmists start their "modern warming trend" at 1975 or 1980.  This would be fine if scientists in the 1960's and early 1970's weren't spelling doom about "global cooling".

So we know that there was a cooling trend from the 40's to 1975.  Why not include that data in the "global warming" trend?  The answer is that because it flatlines the data and shows that there is no drastic warming trend.

I pulled both these photos from wikipedia.  I did this because wikipedia is a reference to what "everybody knows".  Wikipedia is knowledge by consensus.

The instrument stations themselves are affected by air conditioning exhaust, urban heat island effects, and even malfunctions.

My take?  Yes the climate is changing, that is what climate does.  It is always getting hotter or getting colder.  If it didn't get hotter or colder, THAT would be interesting.

To or From....

At the core of political philosophy is whether you attach "to" or "from" behind your concept of Freedom.

Because both those who would oppress and those who would free both believe in freedom, they think about it in fundamentally different terms.

When someone starts talking about "freedom from ____" it doesn't matter the label, they are those who would rule.  Whether the slogan is "freedom from fear" or "freedom from poverty" or "freedom from Xenu" the end result is the same, SOMEONE ELSE HAS TO PROVIDE THAT "FREEDOM".

On the other hand, "freedom to" is an empowering stance.  "Freedom to defend yourself" and "Freedom to travel" and "freedom to peacefully assemble".

Our Constitution actually muddles things by listing civil liberties and government restrictions in the same document.  When people see "No government troops quartered in personal houses" they think it is "Freedom From Housing Troops" where it isn't.  Troops can still be quartered in your house, all Congress has to do is declare war and pass a law explaining how they will do it.

The Third Amendment coupled with the Fourth and Fifth has largely  been responsible for the notion that "an agent of the state" has no business in your home without due legal process.  That the government can use due legal process to put troops in your home, seize your property, and use your personal correspondence against you brings up the difference between "to and from".

Because obviously the right to be secure in your person and correspondence has limits.  And there are very intense debates going on right now about internet privacy, and what exactly is the governments role in "protecting" citizens from cyber crime.

That is the argument between "freedom to" and "freedom from".  Those on the side of liberty are arguing "Freedom to use the internet, freedom to self defense."  Those on the side of oppression are arguing "Freedom from cyber crime, freedom from anonymous terror networks."

And the "freedom to" side has been losing.  Oh sure we got Heller and McDonald, but more and more people are being seduced by the idea that "The Government" can provide "freedom from" anything.

Do we really need to take a look at the government track record of providing "freedom from poverty/drugs/crime/alcohol/etc"?  In every instance the government has failed horribly, I hate to use the term "epic" in describing the level of failure.  But when you fail from sea to shining sea, that is pretty epic.

So do your part, remind people that there is no "freedom from", only Freedom To react to that which life tosses at you.

18 December 2010

MHI FanFic


Shane exited the cave dripping foul ichor. The bonus would be good for this job.

Back at the van everyone pulled security while one person stripped out of the smelly battle gear and used a sponge and a bucket to clean up a bit before slipping into dry civilian clothes.

The ride back to HQ was uneventful. The big Cummins turbodiesel lulled the passengers into sleep quickly with its low steady thrum.

Shane's cell went off. A quick look down from the windshield showed it was MHI main HQ.

Shane tapped the bluetooth earpiece on and said, “Shane here, talk to me.”

“Shane, it's Marvin.” The voice on the other end sounded like a cigarette smoker about ready to keel over with laughter. “Good news, another nest of vampires has set up outside Forks trying to feed off the Twilight crowd.”

“Again?” Shane muttered, “That's the third nest this year.”

Marvin chuckled. “The boss says that predators go where the prey is, and he wants this taken care of ASAP”

“Roger, but we are about four hours away from Forks by road, and it's two hours driving in the wrong direction to get back to HQ local for refit.”

Shane could here Marvin clacking away furiously at the keyboard on the other end.

“Ok, where do you stand on ammo?”

“We are 50% 308, 20% 5.56, bingo on 45 and 12 guage”. Shane rattled off the numbers from the consolidation after clearing the cave.

“Do you know where Elma is?” Marvin asked.

“Sure, it's about 45 minutes from here, 30 if I take the back roads”.

“I'll email an address to your email. Plug it into the GPS. The guy there will either have what you need, or have it arriving when you get there.” Marvin chuckled.

“Alright, whatever.” Shane muttered.

Marvin disconnected and Shane woke Yuri to work the GPS.

********

On the hills opposite two nuclear cooling towers Shane pulled the Dodge 4x4 van into a house near the end of a dead end street. A single light lit up the gravel driveway. A ratty Geo Metro and rusted International Scout II parked off to the side. The garage door opened, spreading a large rectangle of light into the black Pacific Northwest night.

A large man came out, he looked like a dwarf made human size. His chest was broad enough for two men and his red beard was trimmed neatly into a sinister goatee.

“You friends of Marvin?” The man asked in a surprisingly rich tenor baritone.

“Wouldn't call us friends exactly.” Shane replied through the drivers window, “But he gave us your address”.

“Well come on in and we'll see what we can do for you.” The man turned back into the garage. Shane and the rest exited the van and followed inside.

The garage felt like home immediately. A welding station occupied on corner with a workbench going half the length of one wall. Off the top of his head Shane recognized parts for Mausers, AK's, and AR-15's mixed in with various shotgun barrels and random magazines.

“We need ammo mostly.” Shane said.

“I've got a crapload of milsurp 5.56.” Redbeard said. “But my little bro is on his way with some handloads. Should be here any minute now.” He opened a large footlocker set against the wall and said, “Help yourself.”

Normal ammunition isn't terribly effective against the undead. But it sure beats spit balls. The crew quickly got to work slapping stripper clips into loading spoons and topping off empty magazines.

Shane stopped for a second and looked at the ammo he was loading. Black tip? “Where did you get black tip ammo?”

“My little bro.” Redbeard chuckled. “He even had the chaplain bless it.”

Before Shane could ponder exactly what that meant the sound of a V8 engine announced the arrival of another vehicle. Looking outside Shane saw a faded GMC pickup being driven by Redbeards little brother. Little meant years obviously. While not as thick through the chest as Redbeard he was still plenty imposing. The sterile ACU's, clean shave, and high and tight made him look like a soldier. Maybe that was what Redbeard meant by having the chaplain bless the ammo.

“Yo” The little brother shared the same red hair. “Brought ammo. Who needs what?”

Shane spoke up “308” as George and Kasey chimed in “45” and “12 guage” at the same time.

“Alright, we'll start with 45.” He left and came back in with two 50 cal ammo cans. “I've got two flavors, cast 1:20 silver/lead dum dums and lignum vitae stuffed hollowpoints.” The ammo cans were opened to hundreds of rounds of loose packed ammo. The cast dum dum rounds were a dull grey with a cross cut into the nose of each conical bullet. The stuffed hollowpoints looked like any other commercial ammunition except for the dark circle of wood where the empty space should have been.

Magazines were loaded, Yuri alternating between dum dum and wood filled hollowpoints for his greasegun.

Redbeard brought out hot coffee. The aroma was enticing. The flavor was rich and dark. “Columbian?” Shane asked.

Redbeard shook his head, “Sumatra.”

Little Brother brought in two 30 Cal ammo cans to Shane. “Have two flavors of 308, standard 147gr ball and 168gr match. I've lathe turned the 168 hollow tip to 25 thousandths so it will open up that much quicker.”

Shane began filling his bandoleer with 147 gr ball.

A third trip to the truck brought in four 50 Cal ammo cans filled with 12 guage ammo. “Once again, I've got two flavors...oak slugs or sliver plated buckshot.”

Bandoleers quickly filled.

A blond middle aged woman with a kind smile brought out a platter of sandwiches and cookies to the garage. The food disappeared in quick bites and was washed down by the excellent coffee.

“All right, unless you guys need anything else, we'll follow you out there and set up far side security to handle any squirters.” Little brother said.

All activity stopped. You NEVER worked with an unknown team. Even inside MHI you never just threw two teams together to go on a mission if you could avoid it.

Little bro looked around. “I don't like it any better than you. But this objective is a rats nest of exploratory tunnels stuck in the middle of the only temperate rain forest on the continent. My bro and I will form a two man sniper team to isolate the eastern edge of the objective. We have thermals so we won't shoot anything above ambient temperature.”

“I still don't like it” Shane said, looking dead at Redbeard.

“You don't have to like it” Redbeard replied easily. “But you wonder why this is the third time this year that a nest has popped up in Forks? The lead vamp keeps getting away when MHI shows up.”

“Fine” George replied.

The drive out to Forks took a long time, Shane wondered about the two brothers who shared ammo and wanted to kill vamps. They looked like they could handle themselves, but looks don't mean much. Audie Murphy was five foot nothin and a hundred forty nothin. Shane watched the old GMC pickup turn off behind the van and begin the process of lumbering up a logging road to the isolation position.

Whoever those brothers were, they had at least a two mile hike ahead of them.

In the pickup Redbeard squirted some lube into the bolt carrier group of his AR. Lightweight, built on a Cav Arms polymer lower and A1 style thin barrel the rifle itself weighed in at five and a half pounds. The 37mm “flare” launcher sitting under the barrel added to the weight and made it a good spotters weapon. Especially when you could make flare rounds with no parachute, good direct fire weapon for vamps.

Little brothers weapon was a “Saiganov” that Redbeard had assembled in the garage. Topped with a 6x40 Nimrod Scope calibrated for 168gr match ammo and able to take high cap magazines it held 1.25 MOA easily out to 600 meters.

The brothers parked the truck and force marched the final two miles to the clear cut overlooking the valley where the vamps would likely flee from the MHI team. Little Bro pulled several “space blankets” from his assault pack and used a thermal camo tarp to make a sniper hide specifically to avoid detection by vamps. The space blankets underneath, front and sides would reflect their warm body heat up into the sky. Vegetation would break up the metallic mylar material.

A text message to Redbeards cell phone let them know that the operation had begun. Beginning morning nautical twilight had begun, and Little Bro scanned for movement in the valley below.

Nothing happened for ten minutes. Then fifteen. Finally Redbeard whispered, “500 meters, coming out of the woodline just past the stream bed.”

Little bro oriented his rifle and gently squeezed the trigger. Recoil shoved into his shoulder as he began leading a second vamp by three mils before squeezing the trigger again.

Redbeard whispered “Hit one, hit two”. The woodline remained empty. Redbeard sent a text message updating Marvin to the action.

“Why if it isn't a nice morning snack” A voice to the rear spoke with dark amusement.

“Damn” both brothers spoke at the same time, rolling in opposite directions and drawing pistols. As fast as they were the vamp was faster, grabbing the Taurus 357 Magnum revolver out of Redbeards hand and grasping his wrists. With unhuman strength the vamp began to bend Redbeards arms down to his side.

Little Bro's Springfield barked twice, 200 grains of wood filled hollowpoint slamming into the vamps shoulder and neck. The holes didn't bleed, but they sapped the vamps strength as he tried to heal himself without the use of fresh blood. Redbeard's arms pushed back against the vamp. “Again! SHOOT HIM AGAIN” Redbeard yelled.

Little Bro emptied six more rounds into the vamps chest. Redbeard threw the vamp off and drew his Ontario Knife Spec Plus Kukri. Little Bro reloaded and emptied the clip into the vamps writing form. Redbeard cut off the head in on smooth motion, the edge of the tough kukri sparking off the rocks underneath.

“Damn, just sharpened this thing too.” Redbeard sighed.

The sun rose, and in the valley below two vampires burst into flames as the light hit their prostrate bodies. The vamp head laying at Readbeards feet smoked until it burst into ash.

The nest was finished. The lead vamp done. Marvin reported that Shane's team had cleared out seven vamps.

The Brothers met the MHI team at a gas station for a breakfast of really bad wraps and bitter coffee.

“What's your story” Yuri asked, thick Russian accent marred by a mouthful of egg.

“He's a pastor and I work for Uncle Sam” Little Bro replied between sips of coffee.

“MHI offered us jobs a couple years back, but I couldn't leave my family and church, and he couldn't get out of his service obligation.” Redbeard finished.

“We met Marvin playing 'Everquest” and he tracked Redbeard down playing 'World of Warcraft'.” Little Bro went on. “Turns out he has a great memory for online contacts and ran through the employee files and put two and two together.”

Redbeard made a face, “I just never figured he was, you know, a real troll.”

I may be hard on Cops, but let's put this in perspective

In the last two years around 200,000 soldiers have been in Iraq and Afghanistan at any given time.

US Servicemember deaths have lost about the same number due to terrorist/insurgent activity as the number of innocent citizens killed by cop in that same time.

Now there are over slightly 700,000 officers from the Fed, State, Local, and Tribal level in that population.  Training varies wildly across the board, and standards vary wildly as well.  And yet only 48 of those officers suffered death by gunshot wound.  It is safer to be a cop than a soldier in a warzone, and if I have to obey a strict ROE governing how I interact with the native population, is it really so much to ask that police have to have a common ROE that respects the civil rights of native citizens?

Is it so much to ask for core competency training in situation deescalation and situational awareness?  Yes it may cost money, but that is what a training budget is for.  By shuttling money away from the paramilitary SWAT teams that use flashbang grenades to kill 7 year old girls and into better training for all officers SWAT teams will be less in demand. 

17 December 2010

I don't think Joan understands math...

Joan Peterson repeatedly claims "The Majority agrees with us, but the NRA has the political clout".

Which is kinda like saying "All politicians are corrupt and won't listen to the majority".

Which is kinda wrong... but not just because the Dem's have held both houses of Congress and the Executive for the last two years and still didn't pass any "majority approved gun control" but because the Majority doesn't believe in gun control.

Read it and weep Joan.  And here is the continuation of that trend from last year.

More on why cops shoot innocent people. And how to stop it.

Stress.

A high stress environment causes people to cut in half the number of things they can do at one time.  Basically it cuts it down from 7 tasks/thoughts (plus or minus 1) to three tasks.

That is why battle drills are put into three tasks.  Shoot, move, communicate.  Orient on the enemy, assault through, report.  The rule of three is there for a reason.  People get dumber the more stress they are under as their frontal cortex goes into overload and the amygdala starts taking over more and more functionality.

This is why cops shoot at people who have ANYTHING in their hand; wallet, cell phones, hose nozzle, flashlight, and even a common blunt table knife held by a man in his own home.  Because Cops are stupid.  Anyone under a high amount of stress is stupid.  It is natural and normal and totally preventable.

However, stupidity is not a defense in breaking the law.  Each of these cases would be more likely to be deemed murder or negligent homicide if a normal citizen had pulled the trigger instead of an "Only One". 

The key to successfully NOT shooting someone is to CALM DOWN.  If amping up the stress level by BELIEVING SINGLE SOURCE INTELLIGENCE ABOUT A "MAN WITH GUN" CALL stresses you out then you need to calm down.  Because you get stupid when you are stressed.

Every time a cop responds to a "man with gun" call based on a sole 911 call and amps himself up with stress thinking "what if" scenarios, he is priming himself for a process failure.  He is cutting out the portion of his brain that makes rational decisions.  And without the ability to make rational decisions the amygdala goes right into routine responses for "fight flight or freeze".  And muscle memory for a lot of cops is to draw and shoot.

Muscle memory allows people to react WITHOUT THINKING.  Is that really what you want from a cop?  Do you really want someone who is functionally retarded with a license to kill acting on single source human intelligence primed to shoot anyone holding anything at the drop of a hat?

Because the amygdala doesn't care whether or not someone IS a threat, only that it categorizes everything into routine or non-routine.  And anything non-routine is likely to be labeled "threat" in a high stress situation (even if most of the stress is self induced).

So, 911 operator gets a call of "man with gun" or "possible shots fired" at a location.  Dispatcher calls the nearest officer to respond.  The officer puts himself under stress by SPEEDING to respond to the incident.  Already the officer has given himself tunnel vision.  His heart rate increases, adrenaline gets pumped into his system, and his fine motor controls are beginning to degrade.  When the officer arrives "at the scene" he is already in sub optimal condition to make an unbiased evaluation of what is actually happening on the ground based on his stress level and preconceived ideas based on the report from dispatch.  The best thing he could do right now is SLOW DOWN and calm himself.

Unfortunately that is not the case.  And people die.  And then inquiries clear the officer of murder because he "feared for his life/safety".

So if you are a cop and you are reading this.  Take it to heart.  Use your brain as a tool to EVALUATE the situation, trust that your amygdala WILL take over if it does see a legitimate threat.  You don't need to be amped up for that to happen, trust that your training will kick in in microseconds if needed.  But if you are stressed you are likely to shoot things that don't need to be shot.

I plan to advocate for more public education on this issue.  So hopefully we will see more prosecution of cops who murder innocent people

Look folks, the numbers stand that police shoot about 600 criminals a year.  However, around 120 innocent bystanders die as a result of police high speed pursuits.  Up until 2005 (last year for which I can find numbers) around 360 innocent people were executed by cops.  So to shoot 600 real criminals the police have to kill 480 innocent citizens.  That is a 5:4 ratio.  That has to change.  Tactics and training need to change.  Cops need to get smarter, instead of making themselves dumber through self induced stress.

Number of cops killed in the line of duty in 2009?  48.  That is a statistical dead heat with the number of cops killed accidentally in the line of duty at 47.  That means there is a 10 civilians killed by cop to every 1 cop death.  Anyone who tries to tell me that hordes of cops are dieing each year in the line of duty will be mocked.  Less than one cop per state.  Ten preventable citizen deaths to every one cop death.  The numbers don't lie.  You can play with the numbers, but the story they tell will remain consistent.

Product Review: Nutrela Soy Chunks

"Textured Vegetable Protein" is a staple in the ingredient list for MRE's.  While I was browsing through my local Indian Grocery I came across a box of "Nutrela Soy Chunks" and became intrigued.  For the record I am easily intrigued and will usually try anything once.

So I made some "Soy Chunks" according to the directions and the outcome was similar in taste to warm rehydrated dog food.  The texture was spongy, somewhat like a chicken nugget but less firm.

Nutritionally they are spot on, 55% protein by weight (which is about twice that of meat) but taste and texture wise they really need some help.

Still, for a small pantry full of "emergency food" a box or two of soy chunks may be smart.  A protein source for a three day power outage that is easy to prepare.  Although I think that in terms of practicality, some big cans of stew would be much more appealing. 

Positives: long shelf life, high protein content, easy to prepare.
Negatives: taste, texture, and many people are allergic to soy products.
Final conclusion: If you don't eat canned stew or other sources of protein this may be a solution for vegetarians and those who don't mind the taste and texture.

16 December 2010

Why the US can close bases in Europe

I was arguing with Unix_Jedi about US military bases in Europe.  I say that they can be shut down and the troops brought back to the US to save some dollars.  UJ told me that WWIII would surely follow.  I asked who would start WWIII, and he brought up Russia.  I would like to point out that Germany started WWI and WWII.  Russia historically tries to avoid direct confrontation with other Superpowers.

At the end of WWII the US and Soviet Union emerged as Superpowers, while the UK continued to downgrade from empire status.  The splitting of Germany into four zones gave the US a permanent military presence on the continent.  This created the divided East and West Germany.  While Germany was often the epicenter of the Cold War, that war is now over.  The Red Horde did not come screaming through the Fulda Gap.  I disagree with Unix_Jedi, not because he wasn't right twenty years ago, but because the situation has changed.  By the way the numbers stand right now, Russia lacks the combat power to plow it's way across Europe.

Today Russia's Army is about 480,000 troops, with 400 T90 main battle tanks.  The T90 is a "modern" tank in terms of capabilities, but it also has a large number of drawbacks that it inherited from it's T72 father.

In terms of Artillery, the Russian Army has plenty, but without the level of digitization that Western Armies have.  Germany has perhaps the most advanced artillery in the world.  I envy their artillery, it is every bit as accurate as US arty, can put 5 round time on target per gun (we can do 2 rounds max) and is very deployable (our M109's are NOT very deployable).

And speaking of Germany, it has a standing Army of just under a quarter million.  247,000 is more than half of Russia's Army.  Remember that our doctrine calls for a 3:1 advantage when attacking the enemy.  I do not know what Russian Doctrine calls for, but historically it has been much higher than 3:1.  In South Ossetia the Russians used overwhelming numbers to achieve their war aims.  Germany currently operates 408 Leopard 2 tanks.

Overwhelming numbers worked in South Ossetia.  They will not work with Europe.

Poland has a 65,000 man Army that is highly trained and given their operational reputation from OIF, mostly composed of complete badasses.  Interestingly enough, Poland has 900 tanks, 128 of which are German Leopard 2's.  The rest are an amalgam of Russian tanks, T-72's and such.

France's Army has 123,000 Regular soldiers and a small reserve.  The French AMX-56 Main Battle Tank is a on par with the Leopard 2 and M1 Abrams for firepower.  After all, they all use the same ammunition.  France has 406 AMX-56's.

So Between Poland, Germany, and France, there are 435,000 soldiers, over 942 modern main battle tanks, and this is simply a comparison of ground forces along Russia's most likely avenue of attack.

Let us now look at Air comparisons.  Russia has around 1,700 Fighter/Interceptors to establish air superiority.  Germany has 150 Tornados and 55 Typhoons.  Poland has 48 F16's and 36 Mig-29's.  France has 185 Mirage 2000's and 56 Dassault fighters.  That is a measly 530 modern fighter aircraft.  Russia could possibly have an advantage in the air.  However if you factor in the UK's 283 Fighter/Interceptor aircraft the Russian advantage shrinks to around 2:1.  Belgium has 69 F-16's .  Norway has 57 F-16's.  Sweden has 168 Saab Gripens.   Finland has 62 F/A-18's.  These smaller countries really help pad the Air Superiority question in favor of Europe.

Europe is looking quite secure to me and we haven't accounted for Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece, Czech Republic, or any of the smaller newer countries.  The list of Surface to Air Missile systems of the various countries in Europe would be exhausting at this point.  I do believe I have made my point by the numbers.

Russia COULD decide to attack into Europe.  However it lacks the combat power to assure success, with near equal parity on the ground, and an uncertain ability to gain air superiority.  Russia may be big, but it is not big enough to conquer Europe, and if it tried it could not occupy.  The numbers do not lie.

Finally, the biggest threat to Russia is not to the west.  The biggest threat to Russia is China.  With 20 million single men who have no prospect at all of finding a Chinese wife.  I think India is quite nervous on this point too.

As it stands the US has a grand total of 4 Brigade Combat Teams in Europe.  Three in Germany and one in Italy.  Does it really sound like the US is "keeping the Red Horde" at bay with a measly Divisions worth of troops?  There are other brigades stationed in Europe, but they are "service" brigades for Transportation, Engineers, Sustainment.  As far as combat power goes, it is just 4 Brigades.

And the cost of keeping those brigades in Europe is around 1 Billion dollars every ten years.  That is 100 million dollars every year just to have a brigade based in Europe.  If the Brigade has 4500 soldiers that works out to 22,222 dollars per soldier per year just to live in Europe.  Remember that this is just the cost for the combat brigades.

But what about "strategic deployment" you ask?  It takes about 14 days to deploy a unit from Germany, with multiple border crossings and paperwork for three countries.  To deploy a Heavy Brigade Combat Team from Fort Riley Kansas takes ten days.  I am not making this up.

With pre-positioned war stocks across the world you can put the soldier on the ground about the same time equipment arrives at the port.  We don't have to have huge amounts of troops somewhere to have huge amounts of pre-positioned stocks.  See Diego Garcia if you are interested.

So our bases in Europe are a large cost with very little benefit to anyone but the German and Italian economies.  We aren't providing significant security to Europe from a Russian threat, nor are we wisely spending taxpayer dollars.

But what about the 173rd, aren't they "pre-positioned"?  No, the 173rd could be placed anywhere on the planet with an airstrip and be anywhere else in the planet in less than 24 hours.  That they are based in Italy gives us no strategic advantage.  UJ pointed out that no brigade from the 82nd has had to ever rapid deploy, they have always had at least 3 weeks warning.  If that is the case, then there is little need for five airborne brigades as a strategic response, only for the tactical advantage of "vertical envelopment".

Right now Fort Knox only has one Brigade Combat Team assigned to it.  Now that the Armor School has moved to Fort Benning it would make sense to bring a Brigade or two back to Knox.

I believe that I have made my point clear.  Europe can defend itself from Russia.  The US could save quite a few taxpayer dollars.  Russia won't attack because it can't attack with overwhelming forces.  China is Russia's biggest concern.

After dealing with Joan Peterson, it was very refreshing to argue with someone who could put forth a logical and unemotional argument.  Thanks UJ, you keep my mind sharp.

When the cops disobey "slow is smooth, smooth is fast"

They kill people.  Then there is an inquiry into the death of a citizen.  Then the cops are cleared because the inquiry will find no wrongdoing on the part of the police who shot and killed an innocent man.

The psychology of groups makes it almost impossible for cops to respond to a "man with gun" call with anything other than overwhelming force.  Why go into a *potentially* deadly situation without overwhelming firepower?  Such as a tactical team, k9 unit, and helicopter?

The proper response is RISKY.  The proper response is for ONE OFFICER to respond, to establish communication with the "man with gun" and find out WHAT EXACTLY IS GOING ON.  Every time cops get into groups they are MORE likely to pull the trigger than if they were alone.

That isn't to say that a cop on his or her own won't shoot you.  A Seattle man was shot because he didn't comply with an officers orders because of hearing loss and because he was likely wearing headphones when he was shot four times in the right side.

I know that perfection is not a realistic goal.  But is it too much to ask that police agencies around the United States learn from each others mistakes about how to verify a situation before shooting someone?

Let ONE OFFICER approach the "suspect" and establish verbal communication.  If you have the "suspects" head in the snipers crosshairs while this is going on I really don't care.  If they are really worried they can establish communication over a bull horn.  But establishing that the "suspect" can hear you and respond to verbal communication is the first priority.  If you do this one step, killing an innocent person is much less likely.

Once that LONE OFFICER has established communication, he will update the rest of the officers in the response team verbally over his radio.  Having ONE LEAD OFFICER that is IN CHARGE is critical, and having a backup to take charge if necessary.  A clear chain of command will allow officers to go from weapons "hold" to weapons "tight" to "free" as necessary.

Cops had better step up and stop this crap, because between killing people and killing dogs on "drug raids" I'm getting about ready to set up my house for an extended siege.  Fuck this going down nicely bull.  If I, my family, and my dog are likely to get shot no matter what I do, I will do my damndest to take a few with me.

15 December 2010

Sun Tzu; know thyself, know thy enemy.

Linoge pointed out that Sean Sorrentino had found information that Joan refused to provide.  Weer'd even names names.

I've done some digging into the publicly available data about Joan, random things such as phone number, address, age, etc.  I wondered why someone who lives in a relatively nice neighborhood, pretty little park just down the street, could focus solely on violence?  Sun Tzu wrote "If you know yourself, and you know your enemy you will always be victorious".  And it is good advice.  Unfortunately I fail at understanding Joan, and by all reasonable metrics the woman is a barking moonbat.

However, independent confirmation is the way of the scientific (and thorough), so here goes some more.

From Brady press releases we know that Joan's sister was murdered in 1992.

There were 31 cases of murder of a woman by her former spouse/significant other/close family member in Minnesota in 1992 according to the Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women.  The majority of them were stabbings.

12 Stabbings
10 Shootings
5   Bludgeonings
3   Stranglings
1   Unknown

Even if you add the one unknown to the "shooting" category it is still less than half of total.

One shooting stands out.  Russel Lund Jr, a member of a wealthy family shot and killed his soon to be ex Barbara (age 55) and her boyfriend when they arrived at his house.  He called them to come and sign some documents.  He later committed suicide prior to trial.

Could this be the details of Joan Peterson's sister and the event that led her to channel her grief into the Million Mom March and Brady Campaign?

Most likely.  Joan has repeatedly said that her brother in law was wealthy, and that he killed her sister using an ambush technique.   None of the other victims have details that Joan has let slip fit with the age, tactic used, and the detail that the victim was lured to the scene by a request to sign papers.  Dorothy Walters was 48, but there were no details listed, and since Agnes Berglund's obituary listed her daughter as Joan (Alan) Peterson it is a safe bet that this is indeed the case.

I listed Barbara's age because if she was 55 in 1992 that would put Joan Peterson between 42 and 46 (I do not have Joan's actual age, only a demographic based on her and Alan's address which is probably a rough guess at best).  I won't post her address here, it is easy enough to find on your own. 

Anyways that puts the spread between Barbara and Joan at 9 to 13 years.  Of course I am not confident in this margin of error because of the single source I have for Joan's age, but that really doesn't matter.

So now you know, and knowing is half the battle.  Unfortunately crazy people are really freaking hard to predict.  Professionals are predictable, but the world is filled with amateurs. 

I guess maybe I do understand Joan a little bit better now, she lost a niece to a swimming pool and her sister to a silver spooned brat with a gun.  Her life has been surrounded by tragedy, and so instead of blaming her sister (the dead one) and brother in law (the murderer) for letting her niece drown in a swimming pool (probably because her bro-in law was also crazy) she blames the easy access to a gun.

Seriously, if her bro-in law, with ALL the freaking resources at his disposal, could have been stopped by "just one more law" I'm a monkeys uncle.  So why does she waste her time and effort to stop the unstoppable?

As I started out, 31 women were murdered by their SO or close family member in 1992.  Joan has said that the pistol is the "preferred tool" used by murderers.  Unfortunately that is not true, only 33% of women died by gunshot wounds, and ONE of those wounds was from a rifle used by someone who had already tied up and stabbed her husband (home invasion is a bitch).  So 9 out of 30.  That leaves the rest to stabbing 40%, bludgeoning 17%, strangling 10%. 

Why doesn't Joan understand that overall, 40% of murders in the US do not use guns at all?  Maybe it is because she is focused on a tool instead of the user.  Her brother in law was a double murderer who committed suicide in a mental hospital.  Why not blame the crazy guy instead of an inanimate object?  After all, that would be common sense.

14 December 2010

Liberals hate handwashing when Sarah Palin does it

I found this little quote "And then, the multiple shots of Sarah sanitizing and washing her hands suggests the former Gov is primarily concerned, above all humanitarian else, about catching something." from the Huffington Post article here

And this is where I say, no shit Sherlock.  It is a freaking CHOLERA CLINIC.  Do you have any FREAKING CLUE how contagious CHOLERA is?

Cholera is well controlled here in the "civilized world".  Let me paint a portrait for you...

Imagine an outbreak of diarrhea in everyone you know, everyone you pass on the streets, and now imagine no sewage treatment.  Because the watery discharge coming out your ass has nowhere to go but an open ditch one person can infect hundreds and even thousands of others as an unwashed hand touches a doorknob....

Cholera is no joke.  Hand washing saves lives. 

I may be biased because I had to study the origin of germ theory and how Dr. Snow became one of the pioneers of epidemeology.  Brief synopsis, Dr. Snow had the handle of the contaminated well pump removed, and the epidemic stopped shortly after.

The all American survival rifle

Is an AR-15 with a 22lr adapter or separate 22lr upper.  Ceiner and CMMG conversion units cost about the same, and in my experience using exactly ONE Ceiner and ONE CMMG, they work about the same.  Your experience may vary. 

And here is why the "Black Rifle" is the most logical choice for a survival weapon.

1: Ammo is common, cheap, and you can stock up for not too much money.  Premium hunting ammo is available, and while the 223 Rem is a marginal deer round, if you plan to survive by hunting deer you will likely starve.  The 22lr is perfectly adequate for small game, so using your AR to take the random rabbit, hare, squirrel, pigeon, duck, goose, etc, is a better choice than stalking bambi.

2: Parts are readily available and you can stock up on what might break.  With a handy guide and some simple tools anyone can tear down, fix, and reassemble an AR.  Or even assemble from scratch. 

3: You can get a dedicated upper for large game hunting if you want.  This is more of an afterthought for a prepper or a toy to play with for regular hunting season.  My recommendation?  7.62x39 upper if your largest game will be deer, 300 OSSM upper for elk, moose, or caribou.  Make sure you stock up on reloading components and load a large amount of ONE load that works well for your big game upper.

4: Range, an AR in 223 in a practical configuration may not be minute of angle out to half a click (some are, most are 2-3 MOA rifles), but it is accurate enough to give you good standoff from any sort of cover and concealment should you need.

5: It can be configured to be very lightweight.  You'll carry that sucker a LOT more than you'll ever shoot it.  Bambi doesn't routinely walk out of the woods to offer up tasty venison to the hunter, and when you are providing security for yourself or others the bad guys normally go after the weakest targets first.  Predators are predictable.  It is true that if you happen to find yourself in a face colander Mad Max street war you won't care about the weight of your weapon.  Thankfully even in times of crisis life is usually MUCH more mundane.

Here are the downsides.

You will want a spare bolt or two for your rifle.  JUST IN CASE.  Most AR bolts do not begin to fail until after 10k rounds (usually around the 15k mark).  That is a lot of shooting.  HOWEVER, tis better to have and not need, than to need and not have. 

You will need to stock cleaning supplies for your rifle.  AR's don't need to be as clean as Drill Sergeant Smith demanded of me twelve years ago in Basic Training, but like all weapons they need maintenance.  The good news is that you can stock up on the supplies to make "Ed's Red" for cheap and that will last you for years.

So there you have it, the rifle every person should have just in case.  The fact that it make Joan Peterson cry and Paul Helmke wear depends is only an added bonus.

Handgun choices...

Tam noted her experience with the .357 Sig round in her post "Shoots Flat!"

I would like to continue on with her thoughts and expand with some of my own.

Thought number one, velocity is not important to accuracy.

Thought number two, accuracy is more important than caliber.

Thought number three, when all else is equal, bigger holes bleed more.

In the end, the 0.10 difference in hole size you use to ventilate the bad guy is not as important as WHERE you ventilate the bad guy.  In the case of the 45 ACP verses the 32 ACP (really 30 caliber) the difference is only 0.15 inches.

Now, how much oomph does your bullet need?  Enough oomph to reach the vitals, which is around 8 inches of penetration.  Anything over 16 inches of penetration doesn't do you any good, because it isn't penetrating much past 14 inches depending on angle of entry.  I wonder if we could enlist Brigid's expertise in forensics to explain wound patterns?  If not, trust me, you want the damage done to your target, not necessarily what is behind your target.

Now, since both the 380 ACP and 357 Sig make the same diameter hole in a bad guy, when is it appropriate to choose the sedate 380 over the 357 Sig?  When you don't have to shoot through barriers.  The extra oomph of the 357 Sig allows it to punch through stuff on it's way to bad guy ventilation.  The 380 not so much.

Then again, if your bad guy is behind cover, you can still use your 380 to keep him there while you disengage.  You can adopt your tactics to your weapon, or your weapon to your tactics. 

Remember that your brain is your best weapon.  It is also your enemies best weapon, so starve his brain of oxygen through blood loss or help him open his mind.  And that brings us back to accuracy...

I've been thinking about getting a 9mm barrel and slide assembly for my 1911.  The heavy steel frame soaks up recoil (even the 45 ACP out of a 1911 is very comfortable) and it would let me have very timely and accurate follow on shots.  I know this may be sacrilege in some circles, but it is something I am seriously considering.

Along with upgrading the GI sights to something a bit more prominent.  Any suggestions on sights?  Don't want them too big so they snag on the holster or clothes during the draw, just something better than stock.

13 December 2010

Again...

With mass comes mastery.  Fundamentals are the foundation of fun.  Do it again.  And again.

Eventually you get it right.

But remember, slow is smooth, smooth is fast.  Do it right at slow speed to get it right at real speed.

Even if it is just a paperwork exercise.

12 December 2010

Lack of logic, ignorance of history, actions driven by emotion....

Joan Peterson is beginning to engage in "reasoned discourse".  She doesn't want us to bring up the same things over and over again in response to when she brings the same crap up (people aren't responsible enough to own guns...) over and over again.


Somewhere in reading my copious postings on my blog, you must have missed the fact that I am working specifically to reduce and prevent gun injuries and deaths. It is not only personal to me but it is the right thing to do. For you to assert that I don't care about other murders is total nonsense and disengenuous. You will not divert me from what I am doing by accusing me of doing something I am not. I have addressed this before. I'm done with this one. Please do not bring it up again. You can work on those other murders if you have a desire. Why don't you form a group and work to reduce deaths by strangling, poison, etc.? And you are wrong in your facts. I have posted the WISQARS report many times showing that the largest number of injury deaths in most age categories is due to gun injuries.

First off, I've already shown how the combination of unintentional and intentional poisoning in the US kills more people than gun homicide by a 3:1 ratio.  So while guns may dominate the death statistics in a few isolated age brackets, overall the demonization of guns is simply stupid.

My response is thus, and currently waiting moderation.


japete, your 16 state data leaves out the rest of the nation, 34 states to be precise.

The FBI Uniform Crime Report will give you more complete data on crimes, even breaking down homicides by weapon.

And you say you are working to reduce "gun deaths" but ALL the historical evidence says that when your side gets their way, overall death and violence rises.  Ignoring history defies common sense if you also claim to care about "all deaths".

Because you can't have it both ways, you can't actively lobby to increase overall death the way you currently are and state that you are trying to make society safer.  History doesn't agree with you.  I don't care that gun deaths are an intensely personal issue with you, why should your personal issues affect everyone else?  What gives you the moral authority to decide how other people live?

You can say "nonsense" all you want about your work to increase violence in our society, but history is on my side.  And either you don't know your history, or like any good communist you insist that it could work, if only the right people were in charge.

Like a domestic violence victim who keeps going back to her abuser you believe "it will be different this time, this time the gun laws really will do what they promise!  I just know there is good in it."  There is no good in it, there is only increased suffering and death.

There is no tyrant to hideous as the one who claims to do it for your own good.  Every person that Joan disarms is one more that can't fight back, one person more who goes from citizen to serf, dependent on others for protection.

Joan, your sister relied on others for her safety, she assumed that the legal process would protect her.  Why don't you have Alan get a simple BB pistol, cheaply available at most big box stores, and you print out a piece of paper that says "legal protection" on it?  Then you load the BB gun, and see how well that "Legal Protection" stops a BB?  It is insane to rely on anything other than yourself for protection.

The cops are not here to protect you, and the supreme court has ruled that they have no duty to protect any individual.  Cops investigate the aftermath and hope they can arrest somebody (remember that clearance rate of 50%?  means that they don't always get their perp) to feed to the legal machinery to put the perp in jail.  When the chips are down you need enough money to pay someone to protect you, or have the skills, resources, and mindset to protect yourself.  And even then it isn't a guaranteed thing.

I know, millions of dollars of Infantry training means that I can bleed out like the next guy if I get shot or blown up.  But you get up, don't let fear paralyze you from rolling out and doing your job.

irc Client

I have been struggling with connection issues with IceChat7 so I swapped over to the chatzilla plugin for Firefox.

I've been having stability issues with Firefox too, but I guess that is to be expected with the load I put on the browser.  If you aren't using the https everywhere plugin you probably should, unless you NEVER log onto an unsecured wireless network.  If you just use your home network (encrypted with 128bit encryption of course) then you should be fine.

But security programs are like condoms, they slow things down and occasionally break.  On the flip side, they work the vast majority of the time.

I guess I've learned about all I'm going to using Windoze7.  Probably time to dual boot into Ubuntu.

Update, connectivity issues with chatzilla.  Issue is likely in the OS or ISP.   Most likely OS because Ubuntu running XChat did not have this particular problem with the current ISP.

11 December 2010

Ruled by fear and suspicion...

Joan Peterson sure thinks the best of her neighbors...I guess it is why she wants them disarmed?


You guys always think it is an injustice when one of your own gets caught doing something wrong. I believe he was challenging on purpose, set up the meeting on purpose to challenge and had his hidden camera there to record the whole thing. Slimy and most likely illegal. Signs are posted in City Hall near the court rooms saying that guns are not allowed. Time will tell how this turns out. At the least, Rosenberg looks pretty slimy and sneaky to me and has received the ire of a lot of people, including a police officer who feels duped by the gun guys when they got him to testifly in favor of CCW. This kind of junk will change the minds of a lot of people. Just keep it up and you will find that there is not a lot of support for these kind of shenanigans.

I will follow up on the stories about Joel Rosenberg as they happen. I did not know that Joel's wife was arrested. What for? This couple is sounding a bit more unsavory to me. Is it just a coincidence that both have been arrested and are claiming false arrest? Hmmmm.

Just like the Brady campaign, willing to smear a gun owner at the mere hint of an opportunity to advance their agenda.  

Corporations are people too!

For all intents and purposes anyways, corporations are treated like people (legal personhood or some other jargon).  This is a huge problem for a lot of liberal activists because people have rights that prevent them from legally raping the "evil corporations".  But when you start thinking about corporations as people things make more sense.

How often have you heard the "Evil Corporation" theme?

Now I may not like a particular corporation even if I use their product (Apple, see last regularly scheduled rant), but what I like or dislike really only matters in terms of product development.  Apple has built their product to fit a certain market, and I seem to not be in that niche.

That's cool, because in a free market, someone will build what I want.  Apple is not evil for building a stupid product overseas, that is just what any reasonable corporation does when faced with the highest tax rate in the world vs. cheap Asian factories.

So corporations are evil, evil must be punished, we punish evil by taxing it, taxes reduce profits, corporations have to be profitable or die, and this all leads up to manufacturing crap in China.  Can we really call Apple an American Company?  Maybe, they still do research, development, and design here in the US, but like all corporations, they import a lot of talent to do that.

American universities cannot put out the number of scientists and engineers needed to satisfy domestic demand, hence importing talent.  It only makes sense.  Note, those same colleges and universities COULD put out the talent, but as long as a Pell Grant or TA can get you that Political Science degree, why bother with something that actually teaches useful skills and knowledge?  And if I pissed off anyone with a PoliSci degree, shut up and give me my fries.

And just because it makes sense, doesn't mean that you can convince a leftist that Corporations are anything other than evil and deserving of punishment.  "I want to take those profits" Hillary Clinton openly stated what other leftists want to do, take what isn't theirs.  In the real world that is called theft.

But in bizarro our world Wesley Snipes goes to jail for tax evasion and Tim Geithner becomes the Secretary of the Treasury.  Remember kids, profits are evil, black movie stars who evade taxes go to jail but white connected democrats land a cabinet seat, unions can get put ahead of guaranteed investors at the whim of the Executive branch, the US has the highest punishment tax rate in the world, and this is all supposed to make you feel better.

Remember kids, parents punish because they don't like a behavior.  So why do Democrats want to punish profit? 

10 December 2010

Regularly scheduled rant.

Once upon a time two guys built a computer in their garage.  They started a company based on building machines for the common man.

Then they sold their souls and decided that things like "user configs" or "ease of repair" didn't jive with the niche market of "snob tech".

I put android on my iPhone just because, if you can't hack it then you don't own it.  I didn't buy my iPhone, my lovely wife picked it up for me.  But I've tried to use it for something other than a phone (and it makes fine phone calls) but I just am sick and tired of a phone where it is a fucking 80 dollar charge to replace the fucking battery.

I am pissed.  I understand that Apple is in the business to make money, and that they want their clientele to feel like their product is a cut above everybody elses....

This is probably the last Apple product that I will never buy.  Hell even the Windows 7 phones have more user options than the iPhone.  Don't get me wrong, the iPhone is a great toy, but iTunes fucking sucks.  The iPhone really has never been anything but a toy.

I love Linux, but it has a steep learning curve.  And people who want a mac because "it just works"?  Well fine.  Be the type of person who buys a Saturn with extended maintenance plan because you want other people to do crap for you. 

And Google, how do I hate your growing smugness.  You release android just to gain market share.  Google is the WalMart of the internet.  Everybody uses it, everybody bitches about how Google is anti-gun and censors shit in China.  But still, Google is a major internet hub, and here I am bitching about google on my blogger account.  Don't get me wrong, Microsoft has problems too, but I still use a hotmail account that I've had since I couldn't buy beer.

So here I am.  Stuck using tech that is purposely designed to keep me out (and I don't know how they fucking glued that gorram screen on, it is not coming off) and pissed all to living hell.  Pissed that I have to use the services of corporations I don't agree with just to rant on the internet, pissed that my phone was designed to make a saturn driving metrosexual feel good about his life choices, and generally mad that the guys who started the information revolution turned out to be so anti-revolutionary.

Remember when GE and Bell Labs were the big guys (if you don't that's ok, it's been like a gajillion Moore's Law cycles ago).  Tech came OUT of those places that fueled the tech revolution.  Now tech is more about marketing than innovation. 

This is how I feel when that bolt is frozen tight, and I bloody my knuckles when the damn wrench slips.  But now it is fighting with a proprietary kernel on a cell phone that won't even let me manage my fucking mp3's without fighting me over DRM bullshit.

I'm going to have to just go generic.  I'm on my second "Acer" brand laptop.  Weak video cards but an amazing bang for the buck ratio.  Screw American companies, the crap is manufactured in Asia anyways.  Next time I'm buying strictly generic.  Why is it that "knock off's" offer me the options I want when "name brand" doesn't?  Guess the free market really works.

Joan Peterson; hypocrite, liar, and bigot

Joan asks for civility and yet links to Horowitz's slander against Mr. D'Cruz and uses it to bolster her opinion that "some people just aren't mature enough to have guns".

Ms. Peterson, you are a hypocrite because you do not practice what you preach.

I however, am out to win.  I don't care to be civil about it.  The sooner you and the rest of your nanny state fascists die off the better.  Whether you just give up and fade away or choke on your own smug I really don't care.

Ms. Peterson you are a liar because you say one thing and lobby for another.  And yes I am much more blunt on the internet than I am in person.  In person I can see the dull confusion in your eyes as you struggle to put words together in the vain attempt to heal the emotional wounds from your sisters death.  You are so fixated on inanimate objects that you cannot deal with people.

If we ever had a debate you would only have emotional appeal to sway the audience.  Emotional appeal is an extremely weak argument, used by tyrants and fools.  For the children!  Blood in the streets!  Chaos!  Black men marrying white women!  (sorry, that last one was an example of what Joan Peterson's crowd used to say in public).

Ms. Peterson you are a bigot.  You have irrational beliefs and seek any evidence you can to support them. 

The difference between Josh Horowitz's slander and my words here?  You will gladly prove me correct.

Luckily your cries for civility are the death rattle of a corrupt and amoral organization.

Do us all a favor and die quicker.

09 December 2010

Combined arms warfare.

The secret to winning is to make the enemy fight in multiple directions.  Hit him with direct fire to get him behind cover, then use indirect fire to make him flee into the open.

The secret to keeping your force in the field is good logistics.  Good logistics is simple, all you need is food, fuel, ammo, and medical support. 

Ever wonder why the simple things are so hard?

08 December 2010

Information Warfare against a state entity.

I've been thinking a lot about the latest generation of warfare.  "Cyberwar" isn't exactly new, it is really just the continuation of controlling public opinion by rationing access to facts.  The propaganda wars of the past are the father and mother of cyberwarfare.  But instead of just attacking the enemies ideological opinion you get to sabotage his printing presses too.

First you have to kill the databases.

Then you have to kill the commo links.

Databases are harder to kill than you think, and comm links are very very difficult.

So lets take a look at what works and what doesn't.

Viruses work.  Physically destroying the server farm works.  Either stuxnet or "Fight Club" scenarios will give the superpower bigger problems to deal with than a small group.

The problem of course is archival copies, any properly designed system is redundant and has backups.  This isn't a problem if you can isolate that data from the rest of the network, either through electronic or physical means.

So, where to start?  Depends on what you really want to accomplish.  Find a disgruntled kid with security clearance to funnel you files on a burned Lady GaGa CD is one way to put egg on the face of your opponent.  Slipping a worm, trojan, or virus into the upstream pipeline of the IT supplier for your intended victim is another.

There are a lot of ways to suck the egg, and so far no one has used physical attacks as a method.  Mainly because of the data backup problem.  It would actually be easier to kill the backup first then go for the main server if you could time it correctly. 

The US government has been rattling sabers about increasing the government role in public cybersecurity, some pundits even claiming classified knowledge that the fedgov has tools completely unavailable to public security experts.  I have no knowledge of any such development, but I put my faith in the private sector for security.  Why?  Because the fedgov still uses Microsoft.

I don't mean to dog Microsoft, their product is the world leader in personal computing software.  The problem is that makes them the biggest target.  And when enough people are aiming at the same target, they don't all have to be sharpshooters to hit the bullseye quite often.

Update: policy wonk recommends crackdown on internet freedom in the name of security