Friday, December 27, 2013

FICTIONAL ASSASSIN

I was reading a book recently which had the protagonist working as a hired assassin in Detroit. It was pretty interesting because the book didn't just discuss the killer's motives but his rationale for choosing the city he did for all his 'hits.' He figured that with the inept Metro Detroit Police working for the other team he had a less than one in ten chance of ever being caught if he kept his jobs within city limits.
He was used as a corporate 'hit' man who terminated employees for people that wanted to stifle a whistle blower or rescind a golden parachute to an executive who had come to the end of his time with the company...and life. The corporations would contact him and he would tell them to send the employee in question to Detroit for some conference or meeting and that he'd take it from there.

So, you know. If your company wants you to attend a quick conference in Detroit.... your position has been established.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

OUTLANDISH UNSUBSTANTIATED CLAIMS

The Fukushima Dai Ichi nuclear meltdown was no accident. It was the cover and deception contingency plan developed to disguise an accidental release of radioactivity from Japan's Top Secret nuclear research and warhead production facility.
Regrettably, the immediate nature of the radiation leaking from the weapon manufacturing site necessitated premature use of Japan's scalar resonance weapon which was used to create the earthquake and tidal wave that "led" to the meltdown at Fukushima.

Japanese workers who bravely worked in the plants in a futile attempt to prevent the meltdown were unaware of the plan and the need for the reactor cores to melt down and contaminate a critical area of Japan and stretches of the Pacific Ocean.
Scientists are only now rationalizing earlier discoveries that showed a sizable increase in the number of neutrons floating in the Pacific. They have been linked by top scientists at the Climate Research Institute in Wallingford, NH, to Neutron Bombs!

DPRK cries foul and demands a recount!

I'll be around, just not around here much. We are taking a trip.

Monday, December 23, 2013

LOOKING ON THE BRIGHT SIDE

A potential solution to Al Gore's tiny little global warming problem with greenhouse gasses and the lack of any warming whatsoever for the last 17 years has been sussed out; a titanic volcanic eruption on Mars Yellowstone.
Magma organizing and voting to expel all hot liquid rocks from collective because guns
2000 times larger than the explosion at Mount St. Helens. A bit of volcanic winter. With any luck we can stay ahead of the totally man-made glaciers.
http://life.bio.sunysb.edu/ee/geeta/Plat_du_Jour/02EvolDomes_Space.html  

SUBTLE DOES IT

One of the things you learn right away in a canoe is that when you're in front paddling you cannot tell what is happening behind you. Why, that person supposedly paddling behind you might be goofing off the whole way!

So, an important tip for those who are leading the way up river, check behind you often to make sure you're not the only one making a positive contribution to net progress.
Unaware of the slacker in the back

Sunday, December 22, 2013

FULLY LOADED FUNNY

You must read the link to appreciate the entire story about a man who sells his Maxima.


A LITTLE BRITISH HUMOR

A big earthquake with the strength of 8.1 on the Richter scale hit the Middle East.
Two million Muslims died  And over a million were injured.

 Iraq and Iran are totally ruined and The governments don't know where To start with providing help to rebuild.
The rest of the world is in shock.

 The USA is sending troops to help.

 Saudi Arabia is sending oil.

 Latin American countries are sending Supplies.

 New Zealand is sending sheep, cattle and food crops.

 The Asian continents are sending labour to assist in rebuilding the Infrastructure.

 Canada is sending medical teams and supplies.

 GREAT BRITAIN, not to be outdone,  Is sending two million replacement muslims.

 God Bless GREAT BRITAIN....  
 
Damn those Brits are smart !!

Friday, December 20, 2013

MAKING CHUMPS JUMP THROUGH HOOPS

Wouldn't you feel like a stupid chump if you obeyed the law and bought Obamacare insurance at full price last week or last month? Now, you realize that because it's only a law if the President says it's a law, you didn't have too?

Wouldn't you feel like an ignorant buffoon and sick joke if you were in the Health Insurance Business racket ponzi scheme and you supported Obamacare because you thought you were going to rake in money hand over fist from the unwilling chumps being forced into your pool?

Don't worry loser. There's a minimum of 75 million more of you next year when they toss the employer mandate losers into the same pool to sink or swim. You know, if they actually follow the law.

Elections have consequences.

For those with a socialist historical bent, a little history: The Light That Failed. We just did it to health care in America. Good job, Socialists!

BLOWING IN THE WIND

Click here to see the Earth's winds anywhere on earth. 


Thursday, December 19, 2013

TEEMING WITH BUDDHISTS

An interesting bit of mappery.


SERVICE TO THE STATE

A parable for our times:
A man goes into a bar and orders a beer. It happens that the bar owner is serving up the drinks. The man points out that the bar owner's employees are all in the back stealing the booze and pilfering the petty cash.

When the owner rushes to the back of the bar and finds that his employers really are stealing everything, he is justifiably angry and returns to the bar to find that the man who told him about the thieves was gone.

Without paying for his beer.

That vicious low down unprincipled son of a bitch!
At this point, the more I read about the NSA and the Government, the less impressed I am with anything they have to say for themselves. I think the law provides punishment for those aiding and abetting law-breakers and also for those conspiring to commit crimes. It's pretty obvious that the NSA and government have been breaking the law. If the NSA had a single argument with merit, it might be the old one used by the CIA for those who ratted out American spies abroad and thus put their lives in danger. But these are American spies, spying on Americans in America. Who's going to punish them for violating American Law?

Get impeached for covering up breaking into the Democratic Party offices to rummage around for their secrets in Watergate. Break into every office and home in the land to steal secrets: who's doing the covering up now?

It was domestic beer anyway.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

WHY ARGUE

I'll admit to being an argumentative person. I only really do it in writing though since for a very long time I worked in an organization well known for its perfectly unreasonable stance on debating. That said, I can see the merits of this writer's case about the ACLU stance, but also wonder why not just take the money and do a perfectly awful job if they feel they can compel you to do it against your will?

If you come up to me and tell me that you want me to photograph your wedding and I tell you I don't want to but then you turn to the courts to force me to, well, OK. It's going to cost you everything you own upfront with no refunds. All sales final on delivery. I am absolutely certain that you won't like it.

I might even go to the expense of getting just exactly the right equipment for the job.
Wedding Photographer
It's like demanding that I sell you a parachute or a life raft or you'll sue me.

Bride's Mother and Family




Bride's maids

TRILLION PSI

UPDATE: Fed decided that the economy is doing so well now it CAN taper off the unprecedented scam and reduce its monthly bond purchases to just $75 Billion/month. Market up 300 points!!!!!
I am glad that my faith in them was not misplaced.

I thought the Fed would announce the tapering off of the Quantitative Easing scam today even though I knew they couldn't because nobody else is going to spend $85 billion/month to buy worthless bonds. Intellectually, I know QE is in the same category now as Social Security, Medicaire, Railroad Pensions, taxes... Even so, I caught myself wondering a couple of times today how to position my portfolio to survive the ugly dawn when people wake up again, just as we did a few years ago when the banks collapsed overnight, and realize that the government has just shafted us again. The two parties who won't debate government spending, because there can be no debate, won't even accept a common basis for negotiating future discussions. They can't.
It's the budget trends that worry me. From the report above:
Look at the 3rd bullet about interest on the debt. That is almost double the Defense Budget. When the time comes to pay lots of money for absolutely no goods or services, there's going to be hell to pay. 50% of those people you expect to be paying, don't have jobs today.

How much pressure do you think it takes to get blood from a turnip?

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

THE GIFT OF HATE

I was reading at Coyote blog about the ASA decision to boycott Israel. He made an interesting observation I hadn't thought about before, "So these leftish academics have a need to criticize, but feel constrained to only strongly criticizing center-right or right regimes.  The problem is that most of these are gone.  Allende, the Shah, Franco, South Africa -- all gone or changed." I'd throw in Pinochet, Somoza, Papa Doc Duvalier, Noriega, and Thatcher. Life is just getting better and better everywhere!

Those poor leftist academic bast#rds have NOBODY to criticize dammit! They can no longer hate responsibly by hating America and as Coyote notes, all those right wing thugocracies have been swept away by the tide of history. They dare not criticize the muslim regimes for several very good reasons having to do with self-interest. Communists and Socialists are good tyrannies and it's pointless to criticize those losers atop the piles of anarchy that are the remainder of the world.

There really is only one place left on the planet that can be criticized safely. Damn the luck!

THE UNDERTOW OF LIFE PLAYED OUT IN A GAME

I know a number of graduates of the U.S. Military Academy. Most of them are Vietnam veterans who attended the Academy in the late 50's. I lived there for a time. The news that Army fired its football coach on Sunday because he has failed to beat Navy for 5 straight years, says a little something about the Army, the Wars, and the Army Student Athlete in time of war.

I don't believe that Army's football coach has failed because he didn't try hard enough or because he wasn't good enough. I suspect he ran into a problem that cannot be resolved at the Coach's level. I wonder how much of his failure to win is due to the pool of recruits he can convince to sign up to come play football at the collegiate home of the organization responsible not just for killing star football player turned soldier Pat Tillman, but for spending years lying about it and covering it up. Prospective football players knew just how the Army treated a star athlete and the despicable way they lied about it starting in 2004. The last pre-Tillman cadet player graduated in 2008.

I don't think Army enjoyed much success recruiting star football players to come and play for the Army because they know enough to know that upon graduation from West Point they are going to spend years deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. Years away from home, family, civilization, women, a relaxing beer at the end of the day, women, the NFL, football team recruiters, women. The military has been working extra hard to make sure that monastic warriors toe the party line and never drink, fool around, have sex, smoke, party to excess or slip the surly bonds of discipline as cherished and expressed by Top NCOs.

It's not much of a life in the military anymore. If the 10 brainiest people in America sat down with the cruelest petty tyrants in the entire world and thought of ways to make life in the military unattractive and pointless, they could not hope to do better than our military leaders have over the last 13 years. They started out with discouraging behavior they thought was 'inappropriate' such as drinking, going to clubs, drinking, smoking, smooching, sex, drugs, nationalism. Then they outright banned going to clubs, drinking, smoking, smooching, sex, drugs and nationalism. Then they got downright vicious about making life in the military as unpleasant and crappy as they possibly could. It wasn't always so.

There is a whole galaxy of difference between the lifestyle we enjoyed as youngsters and the grim institutional grey prudishness of the military today. Even I can hear it faintly; the tremulous little echos of the nannies who run the military today whispering, "it's bad for you." I wouldn't go to West Point even with the Wars finally winding down. Now the graduates can still enjoy all the institutional shall-nots imposed by, "people who know better than you," and settle down to nothing but garrison duties unrelieved by any chance of getting away to go and kill someone who desperately needs killing.

AMNESTY DEAL IN THE WORKS

As it now unfolds, I become more and more convinced that Snowden is probably the first and last American to ever work at the National Security Agency. The tiny amount of information he has revealed to date clearly show a U.S. Government Agency that is spying on literally every man, woman and child in America. Of course the wing-nuts believed that was true even before the Snowden revelations. Now everyone knows that the NSA really is rummaging through every single digital facet of your life.

The Guardian has put up a fascinating document which does a hell of a lot more than merely outline the extent of the NSA's spying. It also shows the bare-faced disregard for the truth we have come to expect from lawyers. Page 40 of the document describes the NSA's policy, as implemented, to collect metadata on your position/location and compile it and retain it forever. Snowden's information revealed for the first time that what the NSA and its lawyers thought was appropriate behavior, was based on a very dated concept that allows the NSA to collect and process information gathered legally from foreign intelligence agencies. The NSA didn't spy on us, the nasty British did. I suspect the NSA gave them all the tools, methods and access to enable them to get the data they wanted. I'd include the actual text but the original classification markings are still on the document and untouched.

The news this day is filled hereabouts with rumors that the Government will offer Mr. Snowden amnesty in return for the rest of the secrets he made off with and squirreled away.

My advice to Mr. Snowden would be to consider this Government's record of honest and fair dealing with citizens of the United States and to keep in mind the fate a similar government accorded S. Kamel, the son-in-law of the nation's ruler. He defected to the US with secrets about WMD and then accepted his President's offer of amnesty.
S. Kamel was killed in a shoot-out with his father-in-laws family.
I'd take it as a kindness though, Mr. Snowden, if you'd be good enough to let me know whenever you plan to board an aircraft we might be sharing. I'd need time to get off, but you can have any checked bags I leave behind.

POLICY CENTRIST TROLLS THE FAR RIGHT

and laughs at it.

Monday, December 16, 2013

GREAT LEAP FORWARD VERSION 2.0

I think it is great that China's Orbital Bombardment System trial is going so well as it almost achieves a milestone set by JFK back in 1961 for putting a man on the moon by the end of the decade. The United States is the only nation on Earth to have landed men on the moon. It was a revolutionary time in the affairs of men.

The Great Leap Forward was Mao's and China's attempt to jump start industrialization without all the pesky capitalism that let money stick to the hands of the people or non-party leaders. It was very painful but nothing compared to the Cultural Revolution that destroyed every vestige of progress civilization made in 2000 years in an orgy of denunciations and deadly punishments. This was swept under the carpet later by Deng. I view it as an exceptionally evil time but both are well beloved by socialists, communists and progressives. (Yes, yes, redundant).

I am genuinely happy to see China put a rover on the moon. I am disappointed that my Chinese made iPad or even iPod camera takes better pictures then what I'm seeing from their rover now. They should absolutely have the coolest video and camera systems ever landed on the Moon and with the number of iPhones I've seen mishandled, you could just about drop-kick a Chinese made small camera to the moon without harming it.

Heinlein and so many other writers thought of the Moon as the High Ground in the struggle for dominance over the Earth. I'm pretty happy to let those that want it, have it. The U.S. claimed it in the name of all mankind but I'd be happy to see just about anybody colonize the moon. Anybody. I had hoped to see it well begun in my lifetime.

On the other hand, I think memory of time changes as we grow older. When I look back at some of these pictures I dimly recall that time, when I was so young, and was allowed to watch mankind land on the moon for the first time. It's easy to forget how close some of the world is to the Industrial Revolution. A revolution that, almost 200 years later, has still left most of the world in the past.
Remote driving on the Moon 2013

Pu-Yi, Last Emperor of China, 1909 - 1912

MEMORY

Uncle Wilmot on the left
This is a picture of my Great Uncle Wilmot in the Great War. Powered flight was just getting off the ground when this picture was taken in 1918. Fifty years later we had men walking on the Moon. Coming up on 50 years after that and we have slipped a little down the ladder and all the talk of 'man in space' has turned to mush.

In a way I'm grateful that we once again have wealthy patrons who can support the arts of science and engineering with their own resources and money just as rich patrons supported the other arts in the Renaissance. This time around we have a number of patrons who are first in the quest to return man to space.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

PRESIDENT BIDEN WAS SO CLOSE

According to Washington Examiner reporter Byron York, "It's becoming increasingly clear that when President Obama arrived at the Nelson Mandela memorial service in Johannesburg, South Africa Tuesday, he stepped into an atmosphere so chaotic, disorganized, and unsafe that under any other circumstances the White House and Secret Service might well have insisted the president not appear."

Mr York goes on to finish with,  "Now it is clear that American confidence was misplaced. And the United States is lucky the president emerged safely from the confusion and disorder of FNB Stadium."

I guess so. I'm not ready for President Joe Biden.

THERE IS A BUG

There's something in the code that is making that stupid line but while I can see it in html I cannot get at it in Blogger to remove it. I will torture the electrons in their tiny little shells until they scream in torment whilst I rip them apart....tomorrow.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

CHANGE II

UPDATE: Chinese spacecraft arrives at the moon today!

China launched a moon rover at the moon today (December 2nd). It is expected to drive around the surface of the moon after finding the safest place to land from orbit. That will be nice. I expect they already have the ADIZ advisory written and prepped to go.



 I trust the Feng shui will be appropriately considered.

HOW REMARKABLY EVIL OF THEM

One of the extreme left wing websites released their list of corporate donors for the first time Friday. The list is here. A little bit is also here:
  • America’s Health Insurance Plans, or AHIP
  • Apple Inc.
  • AT&T
  • Bank of America
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield Association
  • Blue Shield of California
  • BMW of North America
  • CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield
  • Citigroup
  • The Coca-Cola Company
  • Comcast NBCUniversal
  • CVS Caremark Inc.
  • Discovery
  • DISH Network
  • DRS Technologies
  • Eli Lilly and Company
  • Facebook
  • GE
  • Goldman Sachs
  • Google
  • Health Care Service Corporation
  • Japan Bank for International Cooperation
  • Microsoft Corporation
  • Monitor Deloitte
  • Motion Picture Association of America, or MPAA
  • Northrop Grumman
  • PepsiCo
  • PG&E Corporation
  • Quest Diagnostics
  • Time Warner Inc.
  • T-Mobile
  • Toyota Motor North America
  • Visa Inc.
  • Walmart
  • Wells Fargo
Makes me wonder if somebody slipped them a $20.00 and said it was from Walmart.

Friday, December 13, 2013

MUSLIM ATTEMPTS TO BLOW UP WICHITA AIRPORT

A muslim man was arrested today by some yahoos for driving a van loaded with what he thought was explosives into the airport in Wichita, Kansas. Oddly enough, not one single one of the alleged news outlets in the United States could actually bring itself to write down that he was a muslim. Not one of the eight different stories I checked could bring themselves to write the word muslim. Two of them mentioned something about him being, "radicalized by islamic teachings."

We were cautioned by the legal yahoo in charge to be, "cautious."

The so far unmentioned part of the story of the FBI's involvement in this and so many other cases where muslims buy explosives for their awful attempts at mass murder is that unlike the ATF or USN security forces, the FBI doesn't let the terrorists actually get their hands on working weapons or explosives. Oh sure, the occasional M16 machine gun and the odd sniper rifle vanish whenever the FBI turns their back on them when they leave them on the trunk and go into the donut shop but at least the FBI isn't actively selling real explosives to terrorists...any more. I wonder if they have a checklist they use when they set up their stings:
  • crazy mad muslim terrorist
  • wants lots of explosives
  • unconcerned about remote detonation triggers
  • wants lots of remote detonators
  • asked for location of local, regional, national FBI headquarters buildings
Wichita? Srsly?

LOAD SHEDDING

Load shedding is a term used in engineering to describe stripping electrical loads off switchboards in order to keep the generator from collapsing under too great an electrical load. The process can done either manually or as the last gasp defensive act of the dying generator. As I read the language of the 2014 Defense Authorization, as posted at Senator Levin's press release, I see that the Senate and House have opted to change the Uniform Code of Military Justice in a naked attempt to curry favor with idiots.

I don't mind that so much anymore because what they've done is set up the automatic and terminal shedding of certain painful loads off the shoulders of the Commanding Officer and onto the woefully unprepared and overwhelmed Judge Advocate General's minions in the JAG Corps. The revised language used only in cases where a sexual complaint has been laid with the command, reads, "Amends Article 32, UCMJ, to change Article 32 proceedings from an investigation to a preliminary hearing normally conducted by a judge advocate to determine whether there is probable cause to prosecute a case." It looks like such a small thing but it isn't.

In olden days, an Article 32 investigation was simply called a JAGMAN investigation and it was a tool used by the Commanding Officer to determine if the facts, once they were known, justified taking a matter to either non-judicial/administrative or judicial proceedings. All such investigations were carried out by officers within the command. The vast majority of such investigations  used to lead to simple Captain's Mast where the accused was brought before the Commanding Officer and the matter was handled administratively. Not any more. Now every single complaint of any kind of sexual misbehavior is going to automatically involve a trial lawyer for the government looking for the facts of the matter from the outset. There is no reason to believe that a JAG lawyer will not proceed to recommend a Court Martial no matter what the facts, since to do otherwise is nothing but career suicide.

That will be interesting on a huge number of levels. Right there it starts out as a judicial and legal proceeding and the accused knowing that it involves lawyers on the government's side, must lawyer up too. When the lawyers get involved the process slows down to a crawl. Swift maintenance of good order and discipline vanishes out the porthole. Such minor disruptions could be handled for the tiny minority of cases that required a legal investigation but now every single complaint involving a she said/he said is going to enjoy the full scrutiny of lawyers before it moves along to its inevitable conclusion, Court Martial. These cases drag on for literally YEARS.

In Courts Martial both the government and the accused are permitted to call witnesses. They can call just about anybody they want to. Cases floating through military law just in the last couple of months have involved requests for the President and for the Commandant of the Marines to testify. All of these expenses must be borne by the Convening Authority. Somehow, I don't think they have the funds for that. 

We used to have a rule about playing around within a command. It was simple and boiled down to one word, don't. I made sure everyone knew the rule and what I expected of them but dreaded the inevitable consequence of sailors fooling around since it was going to get into a she said/he said where there is almost never any real evidence. I didn't like having to rule on such matters. Now, the UCMJ says I don't. I don't even get any say in the matter. Morale, good order and discipline may suffer and watching as the military's deployable commands are tied into legal convolutions in order to settle thousands of these cases every year is always good fun, from the sidelines. 

In the realm of power generation and distribution we had protective load shedding but there was another hazard with unbalanced electrical loads and these would sometimes trip the reverse power relay. With the new UCMJ, we have just scrapped that little bit. The navy no longer uses the law as a tool for good order and discipline but rather becomes the law's tool.

NO MORE SPIN

When you think about it, every single person that cast a ballot for a Democrat is 100% responsible for Obamacare. They did it.

Do you think they meant to do it this badly or did they just get lucky?
How much more will we regret it next year when Obama obeys the law the Democrats in Congress passed and forces every employer to comply with Obamacare?

Thursday, December 12, 2013

ALONG THE BORDER MARCHES


Found at American Digest.

NO HIGHER HONOR

I didn't post anything about Captain William Swenson when he was awarded the Medal of Honor because I wanted to give it some time before swirling back to the part that should bring shame and embarrassment to the United States Army. There have been comparisons before now of how long it took for the US to recover from its wounds at Pearl Harbor and then move out and destroy the Empire of Japan in just under 4 years and how long it took the current administration to field a lame web site that cannot begin to deliver on any of the promises made for it by the President and Democrats in Congress. It was not a flattering comparison since it showed that the US defeated the Japanese in less time than the administration had to turn out a web site on a par with Amazon or at least the US Postal Service.

Compare the above with the 4 years, 1 month and 1 week it took the United States Army to award the Medal of Honor to Captain Swenson who had left the Army 3 years ago. The entire massed machinery and bureaucracy of the Army could not read and move a piece of paper written in Afghanistan to the President's desk for signature in under 4 years and it claims to be proud of its heroes. Imagine what it does for its dirtbags. It took the Marines half that time to award the Medal of Honor to one of their own who was in the same engagement with Captain Swenson.

Award packages don't get better with age. They don't accumulate much more in the way of accuracy as time goes by. In fact, once the statements have been taken in an expeditious manner it becomes progressively harder to go back and re-examine the facts because the people involved move on, leave the service, die

It is not that the Army is too bedeviled by petty bureaucracy to handle this sort of thing. Every single flag staff has at least one individual who is responsible for the awards. In major staffs it is the job of a number of people and it's not like they're buried under Award Nomination packages. There's probably not more than 20 Medal of Honor Award packages in the works at any given time in both Iraq and Afghanistan combined. What those clowns did with Captain Swenson is a disgrace and those involved should apologize.

They also might be forthcoming now with how many award recommendations they have in process right now for the Medal of Honor for other heroes who may never receive them.  Personally? I think I'd decline to serve in any organization that has a Human Resources Command. You know what a name like that implies...

Thank you Mr. Swenson.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

INTERESTING LITTLE QUIZ

10 questions and this quiz will tell you where you stand politically. In case you didn't know.

Last night I watched a quick series of little vignettes about how T-shirts are made.  Worth a few minutes of your time.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

BRAVE LITTLE ISLAND

I was going to change up tonight and post a little bit about something I know but I ran across this while I was researching and it is too good a story to pass up. From an era of brave people, the story of the last Royal Netherlands Navy Ship to make it out after the fall of the Netherlands East Indies to the Japanese when the Japanese attacked and overran the defenses of the American, British, Dutch and Australian forces.

HNLMS Abraham Crijnssen was a Royal Netherlands Navy minesweeper. Built during the 1930s, she was based in the Netherlands East Indies when the Japanese invaded at the end of 1941. Ordered to retreat, the ship was disguised as a tropical island to avoid detection and attack, and was the last Dutch ship to escape from Java. On arriving in Australia in 1942, she was commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy as HMAS Abraham Crijnssen and operated as an anti-submarine escort.

HNLMS Abraham Crijnssen disguised as a tropical island
The scant details are here.

WHAT BEER GOES WITH EARTH?


Monday, December 9, 2013

THE THINGS THAT LAST

When I think about it, this may be a more permanent structure than anything we have ever built in North America. It endures.

The Sphinx, circa The Year of Our Lord 1845

Saturday, December 7, 2013

FISH REAVERS OF THE STEPPE

Interesting little article about the worldwide search for a pirate fishing boat. I'm struck by the country that registered and flagged the ship. Not exactly a major player in the fishing world. Courtesy of Jungle Trader.

A DAY THAT LIVES IN INFAMY

We remember.

GETTING AWAY WITH MURDER

 This is taken from Popehat.

As long as you ignore the fact that the shooting victims were innocent bystanders, hitting two people with three shots represents unusual excellence in marksmanship for the NYPD, matching another recent incident in which skilled NYPD officers were able to hit their target and nine bystanders with only 16 bullets. Overall the NYPD usually requires about 331 rounds to hit 54 targets, of which 14 will be innocent bystanders, 24 will be dogs, and 16 will be people the NYPD was actually aiming at. Statistically, if you aren't a dog, it is slightly more dangerous to be the person the NYPD was shooting at than a bystander (16 people out of 331 shots for intended targets for a 4.8% hit rate vs. 14 people out of 331 shots for bystanders, a 4.2% hit rate.) NYPD has a better success rate for other weapons, and certain factors, like shooting unarmed people in the back, tend to increase hit rates.
When NYPD officers fire 331 shots, and hit 16 targeted people, 24 dogs, but also 14 bystanders, there is a problem.
The interweb has a number of this sort of comment from people reacting to the release of the NYPD good shooting report. According to them, they're all good. What drives some people to drink is that in New York City you can be indicted and prosecuted for assault if the NYPD decides to open fire on you and the police miss you end up shooting two innocent bystanders. It has not been reported if either of the two women were armed.

Every week I am more inclined to believe that Barney Fife was not a parody of a police officer, he is a police officer.

Friday, December 6, 2013

THE VIEW FROM THE PEAK

 On first looking into Chapman's Homer
  
MUCH have I travell'd in the realms of gold,
  And many goodly states and kingdoms seen;
  Round many western islands have I been
Which bards in fealty to Apollo hold.
Oft of one wide expanse had I been told         5
  That deep-brow'd Homer ruled as his demesne:
  Yet did I never breathe its pure serene
Till I heard Chapman speak out loud and bold:
Then felt I like some watcher of the skies
  When a new planet swims into his ken;  10
Or like stout Cortez, when with eagle eyes
  He stared at the Pacific—and all his men
Look'd at each other with a wild surmise—
  Silent, upon a peak in Darien.
John Keats.

EPAMINONDAS IMPLEMENTS OBAMACARE

The predictably dismal performance of the healthcare.gov rollout reminded me today of some other computing revolutions that I was once a part of. Way back in 1984, my first ship was the Middle East Force flagship, USS LASALLE. When I reported aboard in March it had a total of one computer. (We don't know what was in SSES, do we? No. No we don't.) It left the ship and Bahrain on the C5 I arrived on after a little mishap with some coke and an Operations Specialist in the Combat Information Center. Six months later it was returned and locked up. It was pre-JOTS-In-A-Box but I have no idea what it was used for because it was secret. Right about then, the Chief Engineer returned from leave with a brand new Commodore 64 computer. The only real computer on the ship. It didn't contribute much to the war effort.

There were other significant computing milestones in my navy. Remind me to tell you about them sometime. My next major entanglement with navy computing happened a year after I reported aboard Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command when the Navy and EDS rolled out the Navy Marine Corps Internet. It was an unqualified disaster that took YEARS to resolve. From: DTIC.
Abstract : In October of 2000, the Navy's leadership entered a multi-billion dollar IT service contract with a private company to build and maintain the Navy-Marine Corps Intranet (NMCI). The hope was to have the new intranet fully operational in just two years, but the program encountered so many difficulties that, almost six years later, the initial implementation process is still underway. Aside from the unexpectedly high number of applications that needed to be migrated to the new network and the repeated attacks by members of Congress and other government agencies, by far the largest obstacle to NMCI s success has been the end users resistance to change. The Navy s leaders underestimated the significant cultural change brought on by the implementation of NMCI, and as a result, they were not adequately prepared to deal with the negative user response. After providing a historical account on how NMCI was conceived, planned and delivered, this thesis goes deeper into NMCI s implementation process by recounting the experiences of those who used NMCI at the site level. Once the history and site case study are presented, this thesis ties in the theme of change to show how proper communication can facilitate the success of future transformation initiatives.
 The gory bits are in the thesis which is here.

What happened is spelled out very well in Mr. Taylor's Thesis. A "good idea" was had at the very top by profoundly important people who directed their minions to find a loophole in the Acquisition Rules that would allow the Navy to do an end-run around ALL of Congress and implement the little SIX BILLION dollar contract without troubling the Congress. That was profoundly stupid.

Then they grossly underestimated just how much the navy relied on computers and applications unheard of within the Beltway.

Then they really screwed up and chose what they called a "disadvantaged" navy facility and the very heartbeat of the Navy's Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) as the first two sites to implement the initial roll out of NMCI. Guess how the people that work at the core of C4ISR felt at being totally excluded and left out of the loop on designing, building and installing the biggest thing in navy computers since POLARIS? And the profoundly important people thought that using them as fodder and unheralded minor guinea pigs in the network catastrophe was a "good idea."

The NMCI took up to an hour to log onto and up to an hour to log off. A lot of the time it didn't log me off and I just turned off the machine. We all did. We started to complain and found ourselves promptly labeled as resistant to change and unwilling to change our ways. It was no use pointing out that our work required access to working computers and the network and if change was necessary couldn't we wait until after EMP took the whole thing down worldwide before we re-adapted to working in the 19th century?

The profoundly important people decided that the time and dollars spent qualifying and approving all the myriad applications that people used to do the work was too burdensome and so they just took an axe to whole swathes of programs. They axed a lot of purely Navy programs. Obviously, they quickly paid through the nose to buy newer better and NMCI compliant software from contractors who got serious friction burns on their palms from rubbing their hands together in glee.

The process was so fiendishly complex (and made even more so in every way by the gracious researchers, scientists, technicians and programmers) at Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center San Diego, that the profoundly important ones decided, after a year or two of open warfare, to permit the SSC people to have an exemption from NMCI and retain their own networks, computers, servers, etc.

When I look back and compare the implementation of NMCI with the implementation of Obamacare I am surprised by how they both managed every pie.
"And then Epaminondas was careful how he stepped on those pies!
 
He stepped - right - in - the - middle - of - every - one."

Thursday, December 5, 2013

ECLIPSE OF THE SUN

Solar Eclipse as seen from ISS

HIS INSANE HATRED RAN AWAY WITH HIS MOUTH

One of the despicable on-air presences at MSNBC has decided to resign after he said some deeply hateful things about Governor Palin while broadcasting from the news drama hatred-on-parade TV show. He was the second low life on air talent to be let go from MSNBC in recent days.

I can accept that some people don't like other people based on absolutely nothing except their differing political views. I can't understand how the ones that let their mouths run away with the hate and venom they are consumed with can keep thinking they have a free pass to shout this vile hatred to the world on-air and wallow in filth and slime and negativity all the time.....unless they're used to getting away with it and that's the way they always talk about people who hold differing beliefs.

In other words, they're like people who still call other people racists progressives.

AIR ASSAULT ON GUAM

UPDATE

The 4th Air Assault Wave was launched in Guam this week.

We have a problem in Guam it seems.

Specialists have been consulted:



Let a new rain of terror begin!

Last image courtesy of Photobucket

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

CIVIL WAR LETTER HOME GLASGOW KENTUCKY

-->                                                                                     Camp near Glasgow, Kentucky -->
                                                                                                     November 1st 1862

Dear Parents

And Sisters I have received several letters from you but have had no opportunity to write to you as we have been marching all the time until today. We camped 5 miles north east of town last night and this morning we moved 2 miles south west of the town in a large field where the grass was quite long and dry and when it caught fire it was impossible to arrest its progress and the consequence was the tents of one company (Co. B) was burned but nothing else was injured by the fire in our Regiment.


You speak of the destruction of General Woods’es train but you have heard the true reports of it yet so I will  tell you what I know about the matter. A train of 90 wagons was loaded with clothing and provisions and about 150 men unarmed was taken 7 miles on the other side of Bard Town, Kentucky. The train belonged to this division but not the goods, but still I lost all I had when the train was taken for the man in whose care I left the things was coming threw to the Regiment with the train but when he was taken the things were taken from him. I will give you a list of the things I lost and the things I have left with me

List of the lost Property

1 Pair of boots

1 “         “pants

1 “        “drawers

1 “        “socks

3 shirts

1 satchel

1 blanket

1 overcoat

some postage stamps

1 Algebra

1 bottle of carmine fluid

1 fine tooth comb

List of things left

1 pair of pants

1 “    “ drawers

4 “    “ socks

1 pair of shoes

1 cap

1 coat

1 shirt

1 comb

1 needle case

9 Postage stamps

1 Blanket which is enough with those in the hospital

1 towel

 I received the things you sent to me by Albert Kerbst a few days ago. Our Hospital team has come up so that I am doing very well in the bed matter.
General Rosecrans has superseded General Buell now so that I suppose this grand army will be able to do something soon to put down this war which I think from appearances is fast coming to a close. If you send anything to me please let it be the following articles

           1 Gum overcoat

           1 Pair of Boots

           2 Woolen shirts

           2 Pair of Woolen Drawers

           2 “                        “ socks

           2 “                        “ gloves

           1 Bottle of Carmine Fluid

and then I think I will have be fixed for some time. If you wish you may send me a pen knife as I lost mine a while back. Dr Dryden (the Hospital Steward) and  Dr Goart send their respects to you. I will send you the Surgeons Morning Report I made this morning in this letter. I am as well as usual. Give my love to all and receive the same an I will remain your affectionate and reformed son and brother.

                                          Luther M Beaver

                                              Co I, 15thRegiment

                                                   Indiana Volunteers


A CHEERFUL PICK ME UP FOR THE DAY

The latest education scores are out and they results are very encouraging. Rather than completely recap them here, I invite your attention to iSteve's place where he covers the numbers in gracious depth from viewpoints unique and with startling conclusions. It's all good.

Asian Americans did about average for wealthy Northeast Asians, white Americans beat all traditionally white countries except Finland and Estonia, Latino Americans beat all Latin American countries, and African Americans likely would have beaten all majority black countries by a comfortable margin.
The fascinating bits are still in the undiscovered reasons for why Massachusetts and Connecticut stomped and kicked butt with average scores that beat strictly white student scores.

Frankly, I seldom hear good news about education in America and it does my soul good to hear it today.

STUPID AND PREDICTABLE

I listened to NPR today and read the news and it looks like the media is once again in full cover and deception mode for the administration and allowing the President and all of his non-media spokesmen to lie their heads off about Healthcare.gov and how all the problems are fixed and its all better now and everything is good to go. They're lying.

It's amazing to me how they rely so deeply on the ignorant voters who pull the lever for stupidity every single time. The vile and odious thing is how the media is slavishly lapping it up and passing it along to the stupid when anybody with 2 brain cells can see what is going to happen next month. Millions of people lost their insurance because Obamacare made their insurance policies unlawful. The policies were canceled effective 31 December in accordance with the Democratic Party's Law.

In January, the people with no insurance who enrolled on Healthcare.gov for replacement insurance are going to find that the "backend" of the program never worked and that they DON'T have any insurance after all. The code failed to communicate the policies to the insurers. The government and media aren't just lying about how 4 diplomats were murdered in Libya in the dark. They're lying about millions and millions of people losing health insurance. As it becomes clear that the people who enrolled at the government's web site don't actually have policies it will come out.

I know why Obama is doing it. He's going to blame the insurance companies. I'm sure he's already got the speech written where he condemns the evil bastards for letting Americans twist in the wind without insurance because they are greedy.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

INVENTION'S GRANDMOTHER


qrf-danger-close:

Awesome!!!

If necessity is the mother of invention then war is the mother of necessity. It's hard to see what circumstances made this look like a good idea.

20 YEARS OF PROGRESS ON THE POCKET FRONT

You know if the government decided to launch a massive effort to miniaturize all the big toys of my college days so that all of them together would fit in my pocket today, I'm pretty sure the government would have sent along a 4 cubic foot pocket with their new device.
Progress. In spite of government.

Monday, December 2, 2013

MEMENTOS OF WAR AND FATHERS

I was reading today over at The Mellow Jihadi and one of the posts there struck a chord. It was an article about the family of a brave soldier of the Great War who had left behind his medals after his death. His son wrote and said that his children didn't want them and that was why he was putting them up for sale. There was outrage that the children didn't want them. I don't see why.

There are a lot of medals in my family. We've been doing the military thing since before this was a country. My grandfather's medals were nicely mounted in a velvet backed picture frame by his wife after he died. They look pretty good. These days they hang on the wall in one of my parents guest rooms. My younger brother has asked to have them when my parents are done with them.

My father has a number of medals but his are kept just like mine are: out of the way and stuffed in a box.

The few times I wore a uniform in the last 15 years that allowed the wearing of ribbons I only wore three of them. The rest accumulated in the box I bought as an Ensign in Karachi in 1984.
When I went back to San Diego to sort through all that remained I came very close to leaving mine behind. I don't wear them and don't ever expect to wear them again. I never got around to actually mounting most of the later ones because the only time I ever wore them was at weddings. I don't think that they're anything my daughter might want because, if we're honest, the mementos that anyone has from previous generations are the things one's mother saved and passed down.

In my family, I expect mementos of my father will be some some photos, guns, swords, medals and the memories of a truly amazing man who engaged in a lifetime of learning and love for his family. I wouldn't ask for more.

UNIONS: DETROITING FAST FOOD FOR YOU

I don't eat the stuff anymore but I still don't think that the option should be forever foreclosed by the same idiots and imbeciles that brought us Detroit and most of the cities in doomed California.  Seriously, a basic firefighter in LA makes $188,000 per year and can expect to spend 3.2 years sitting outside an Emergency Room with a buddy, tying up an ambulance that cannot respond to other 911 calls because Union.

Entry Level Jobs are for Kids! Not people raising kids.