Friday, January 17, 2020


Pretty good photograph. If only they'd been able to squeeze earth into the shot they'd be famous. It's from History on the right.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Hard to believe we used to be able to travel to another world 50 years ago. We can't do it now of course because mmmbmle...

Charles Conrad Jr., Apollo 12 Commander, stands next to Surveyor 3 which landed on the Moon 2 years earlier. Lunar module can be seen in the upper right. 1969. 


Most of my life I fought sleep. Live to read was my motto and if that was under the covers well after midnight with a battery rigged with a wire coil and flashlight bulb, so be it. It's not like I learned anything in school anyway. One might, at this end of the spectrum of life, point to the fact that I slept through class but I wouldn't. Until chemistry, classes were pretty much useless. One could read the whole year in about a week. This didn't help much with math but then they wrote crappy math books way back then. They're much better now.

I used to try to cudgel the brain to sleep since that was what kept me up after I left the navy where I slept very well indeed. 20 hour days do that to one. I would lie awake at 0200 in San Diego and tell my brain that if we weren't asleep in 20 minutes we were going for a run. Usually my brain knew I wasn't kidding. I ran a lot back in those nights. Well, I might run down W. Grape St. to Harbor Drive but then I always slowed to a walk as I walked the length of the harbor to Tom Ham's Lighthouse on Harbor Island and back. Wouldn't want to overdo it. A five mile walk was about good enough to induce sleep.

I managed pretty well in this vein until another life changing event. That one went as well as expected, no complaints. I learned that one really can live, function rationally and get by quite well on about 3 hours of sleep per night. I knew that going in after my navy experience but it was an interesting discovery in later years that sleep is malleable.


Christopher Tolkien, a World War II veteran of the RAF,  was the last of the group of writers featuring C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien and he died on the 15th of January. I read The Silmarillion but never really progressed to the rest of the history of Middle Earth since I found the territory I covered in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit to be enough. I have most of them but I've never found the time to read them. One might say that about the thousands of books lying around here.

I would have paid money to buy them rounds to hear them talk but grew jaded in later life after listening to some authors talk, online, and came to the conclusion that many of them talk in the hope that others will pay to shut them up.

I've been to one author's talk to be honest. It was by serendipity that we went to our local B&N to find them hosting little known author Larry Correia, just by chance. Interesting talk. I haven't even attended my own sister's book talks at book stores near here. Maybe one day. She is never boring and writes well enough. You can guess that we might have been exposed to the same author influences growing up and you'd be write. Yes, I meant to do that. Oh, and I also attended an author's talk by this guy at the Army and Navy Club with the old man. It was a fascinating talk. You'd enjoy the movie at the link.

Christopher Tolkien, 1924 - 2020.

Thursday, January 16, 2020


It seems it was a day of funerals for my parents in Arlington yesterday. The first was for the very good friend of theirs who passed away last year and the service was early in the morning. The second funeral was a couple of hours later for her son who made it out of Iraq but didn't survive the bitter cold of his return to the no longer loving bosom of his family. It's hard on a husband and father when love turns to hate. I wouldn't know anything about that of course.

Like me, they are forever young.

Their son was born 3 months after me. We knew each other intermittently for the first 14 years of our lives and went our ways in between. Such was the nature of growing up in an Army family that moved every 2 or 3 years. We would re-meet every second move or so but we were not friends, we were boys thrown into the occasional company of other boys of our era whose parents were very good friends based on their own backgrounds. Sadly, the Pastore family is greatly diminished.

When I wrote about the old man suggesting a tour for me as a provincial reconstruction team leader, this was the guy behind that and there were a dozen others I knew who went that route and I was glad enough that I had been seized up by the Navy to deal with the actual security nature of the business before I could be shoveled into one of those jobs working for the Army and State in Iraq or Afghanistan. That would not have gone at all well. In my world the Navy was very very different from the Army and Air Force and it would not have gone well for me to once again venture into their special worlds of make believe. I once worked directly for ARCENT for 2 months in Egypt. Never again.

My peers were accumulated over a lifetime, many of them little of my doing. We were born and raised by people who shared a common view that has faded to almost nothing now. I suspect the last of it faded away as I read A Sense of Honor shortly after it was published while I was still a student. 

I dare to say that the young men and women of the Forces today would disagree. Good for them!

Wednesday, January 15, 2020


She is reputedly laying the charges against that monster right now. I was looking for another clip of the same show but if this does not perfectly portray the democrats in action against President Trump I don't know what does.

The one I was going for at first is this one of course.

[Don Cervantes]
May I set the stage? I shall impersonate a man
Come, enter into my imagination and see him!
His name... Alonso Quijana... a country squire
No longer young... bony, hollow-faced... eyes
That burn with the fire of inner vision. Being
Retired, he has much time for books. He studies
Them from morn to night and often through the
Night as well. And all he reads oppresses him...
Fills him with indignation at man's murderous
Ways toward man. And he conceives the strangest
Project ever imagined... to become a knight-errant
And sally forth into the world to right all
Wrongs. No longer shall he be plain Alonso Quijana...
But a dauntless knight known as -
Don Quixote de La Mancha!

Substitute "a democrat" for Don Cervantes and Trump for Alonso Quijana and use your imagination.

There used to be a very good u-tube video of that clip but I can't find it today.

Bring on the Inquisitors of the Senate!!!! It will be entertaining in the vein of

Tuesday, January 14, 2020


I still cannot get Blogger to recognize me when I comment on blogs, even my own. It means that I cannot comment on any comments on this blog even though.....
It's irritating.


The Iranian's ayatollahs are facing them now as the Iranian people once again seek to get out from under a 7th century dictatorship that has sought out to deliberately make enemies out of almost everybody in the world. Nothing the leadership has done over the last 20 or 30 years has changed by a single iota but the Iranian people appear to be fed up with them. What can you say, into every generation a new slayer is born.

I've written here before about the baseejis and their counterparts in Saudi Arabia. In Arabia the crown prince has taken it upon himself to severely curtail the powers of the mutawa. In Iran it appears that the ruling council has similarly acted to restrict the baseejis if not to the extent the crown did in Arabia.

Unlike the late and now somewhat lamented Shah, the crown prince in Arabia is under no delusions. He will rein in the out of control elements of a vastly corrupt society but firmly intends to signal that all opposition to the Crown and to the laws of the State will be punished with maximum force. This yields all the things Fox Butterworth was always claiming as a bad thing. With Fox it always depended on the viewpoint. From the viewpoint of the rapist going to jail for 30 years or the crack dealer who destroyed lives going to prison for decades, he was always the first on the news to decry the savagery of such justice. Nevertheless, the bulk of the people support that kind of punishment and so too in the Kingdom. They don't want murderers or drug dealers and while they aren't opposed to keeping them alive for the rest of their lives it's only so long as their heads are chopped off by the end of the year.

The media still gets in a froth about the Saudi citizen killed by saudis in saudi territory and claims it was by the whim of a mad dictator crown prince. As may be, it still isn't much of a crime when you factor in extraterritoriality and the fact that on saudi ground only saudi law applies. I find it laughable that those in the media most frenzied about the so-called crime have no problems treating Americans in America caught espousing support for President Trump or his policies like gutter scum and advocate their removal from polite society by any means necessary.

Of course the smarter of the dim ones have slowly come around to the simple fact that the folks wearing the red MAGA hats are also the ones that own most of the guns and ammunition in this country and don't care to be trifled with. Sure, you hear about the endless black on black shooting in places like Detroit, Chicago, Washington, DC, New York City and endless other places where it is a "CRIME" to own a gun and you rarely hear about men like this.  Oh, by the way. It is an easy leap to conclude that a former Deputy Sheriff of Texas who attends church, dare we say it, religiously, is probably going to vote republican in the next election. Democrats, muslim clerics, muslim terrorists (I know, I repeat myself) all favor degrading Christians and Christianity. It's been the rule of muslims since the 8th century and they mean to keep on doing it.

30 years ago I passed through LAX enroute someplace and found some alleged Iranian Students panhandling for change to overthrow the ayatolla. I laughed and passed them by. What the bravest ones must do now in Iran is to contemplate overthrowing a regime that had as one of its generals a man dedicated to using terrorism abroad to enforce the mullahs dictates. If he was what they used on the arabs, imagine the man or men they have holding the line in the IRGC. They probably make Soleimani look like a complete wimp fit only for unimportant work because we all know that the real terror is reserved for the 'preservation of the state'.

Monday, January 13, 2020


There's a little bit out there every week and one can catch it at Powerline's week in pictures roundup on Saturdays. Sometimes they have special editions. It goes without saying, they work much harder than I do. This is just a sample of this week that I enjoyed. They are far more amusing and truthful than the New York Times. Every weekend I struggle to read the Sunday New York Times and every weekend I come away convinced that those people are unbelievably out of touch with America every bit as much as they have been for the last 100 years. Srsly, those people who believe they have their fingers on the pulse of what is happening here and abroad simply by reading the NYT and watching the news are seriously deluded.

What if some parents are like anti-vaxers and refuse to believe in peanut allergies?

It may not have been Hillary, it was probably the Clinton Foundation or one of the Windsors.

All the democrats had to do was not act crazy to win in 2020.....

I'm waiting for the NYT to jump the gun with his obit

Everybody needs a coffee maker. We've got like 10 of them
It's as if they creep through life blind to what is going on around them

On par with working for the Clintons. It's like a form of assisted suicide.
Cherly Mills, Humma Abedin and a host of others must have convinced
the foundation that their secrets will survive their 'suicides'.


I wasn't expecting it nor did I watch it live. Did anybody? Nevertheless, it's worth 8 minutes if you haven't already seen it.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020


Sure, it starts with squirrels but where does it end? It kind of sounds like The White Plague.

Monday, January 6, 2020


The editors have gooned their job. I'll fix it. Meanwhile, Kurt here has nailed it. By the way, when my father was a project officer in the Pentagon after he got home from Vietnam he was the one that came up with the name for the HELLFIRE missile. Helicopter launched missile fire and forget.

This has been a really difficult time for Ben Rhodes, John Kerry, and the rest of the geniuses who zombie Neville Chamberlain recently hailed as “a flock of insufferable sissies crowded around the behind of America’s enemy, shamelessly smooching their dignity away.” Zapping Qassam Soleimani ruined an Iranian offensive that had started with such promise. When the dirtbag catspaws of the dirtbag Iranian mullahs surrounded the American embassy in Baghdad, American liberals were more excited than the old Weekly Standard’s staff would have been upon discovering that it was sharing one of its cruises with a pool boy and sexy gardener convention. Libs and their Fredocon submissives were practically salivating at the thought of fellow Americans being murdered by scuzzy foreigners and the opportunity such a tragedy would present for blaming Donald Trump. This was Trump’s Benghazi test, they chortled on social media.
Yeah, except Trump passed his test. 
The Iranians had been getting uppity for a while, but then their punks killed an American contractor in a rocket attack on a U.S. base – and let’s not get distracted about whether we should still be there. They killed an American. We are there, and you don’t get a pass on murdering U.S. citizens because we may or may not have a good reason for them still being there. You get dead.

See, for too long we were asking the wrong question when tinpot dictators dared hurt Americans. We asked, “What would a gender-fluid Oppression Studies major at Yale do?” As I have observed before, the correct question is “WWJC do?” – “What would Julius Caesar do?” 
Trump ordered hard hits at five Shiite militia weapon sites, and not with any warnings either. They got one of ours, we got about two dozen of theirs. Like the old joke about 1,000 lawyers at the bottom of the sea, that’s a good start.
The Iranians, whose Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps is the ultimate source of most of the Shiite terror in the world, decided to respond in what they thought was a clever way: send a few thousand of their camo-clad dummies to attack the embassy and hope and pray a bunch of them got mowed down on camera. In the meantime, wave a lot of banners, burn some stuff, and pound on the reinforced glass for the press’s benefit.
But apparently, no one told the “mourners,” as the austere scholars at the endlessly useless New York Times dubbed the members of Islamic Antifa, that they were supposed to get smoked. They went home with the embassy unseized. Getting martyred en masse is not that much fun when you’re just one sucker out of dozens – heck, they may run out of virgins. 
See, Trump made it clear he was not playing. There would be no Benghazi II: Bagdad Boogaloo on his watch, and he acted well before 13 hours ran on the clock. Rejecting the elite’s preferred model of craven submission to every Third World cretin with a grievance and a camera, the Trump administration flew some Apache gunships over the crowd of unwashed morons, kicking off some flares, and generally sending the unequivocal message that if those SOBs had a problem, the AH-64s had a 30mm solution. 
And then the administration sent in 100 Marines, about a company, on Ospreys as a quick reaction force and alerted the ready brigade at Ft. Bragg to start shuttling 82nd Airborne Division paratroopers into theater.
Whatever the opposite of “stand down” is, Trump ordered that. 
But there was more. 
He dusted Soleimani, who thought he could just cruise through Baghdad to conspire with his militia pals to kill more Americans. This guy had already maimed or murdered hundreds of our soldiers. But he thought he was safe. He thought Donald Trump was another punk like Barack Obama. 
Like Hellfire he is. 
No one wants a bigger war with Iran – well, Bill Kristol and Max Boot probably do, but no one who matters does. The fact is that we have been at war with Iran since 1979. It’s just now we’re shooting back. 
We didn't fuck around either back when. Praying Mantis was fun for us. Not so much for Iran. Vincennes was a fluke but they had it coming. Nobody in the air screwed around when UAE Air Defense Station #6 said turn around. 
When a foreigner kills an American, somebody needs to die. And somebody did. The Iranians did not expect it. And this rocket-powered justice from above will focus their minds wonderfully. 
Again, whether we should still be in Syria, Afghanistan and/or Iraq is a different question than whether we should turn a terrorist into goo – and one I’ve been clear on as far as my perspective. If you dare kill an American, you need to become a technicolor smear across a few dozen square meters of desert. 
This could escalate, sure. Maybe a show of force will be met by force in response. But if we roll over like gimps, our weakness will absolutely draw force in response. And we are never going to get every single American out of the Middle East. We’ll always have embassies, business contacts, U.S. citizens with family and Americans who just damn well feel like going there who can be targeted. 
You don’t get to hurt Americans. Ever If you do, bad things will happen. 
Welcome to the Trump Doctrine. 
We don’t want an escalation and we should show restraint where we can – but killing Americans must be a red line, a real one, not an Obama one. If this does escalate into a major confrontation, we need to keep some principles in mind. We need to do more than “send messages." Pain should be our message. Any strike should have a tactical (if not strategic effect). Hitting the arms caches means they have fewer arms, and they got the message. And we focus on destroying what the decisionmakers in Tehran care about: sink some capital ships, vaporize a bunch of aircraft, flatten a refinery. It’s even better when it can support the Persian patriots in Iran who want to hang their oppressors from the lamp posts. 
“Proportionality” is a sucker’s game. Our goal should be pain. Screw with America and we hurt you, mullahs. Personally. Not just the idiots who do your dirty work. You and your toys. 
Oh, and we should be aiding the resistance inside Iran, because someday – 40 years after that fool Jimmy Carter allowed the country to descend into theocratic tyranny – the people of that nation will take back their freedom. In the meantime, we need to reemphasize that the days of messing with Americans with impunity are over.
So, spare a thought for Ben Rhodes, John Kerry, and the rest of the liberal saps during this difficult time. And that thought should be, “You suck.” 
Liberals seem to hate this country so much because it is full of Americans. And my newest novel Collapse (along with other entries in the series, People's Republic, Indian Country and Wildfire) look at what would happen if the left got its wish and got rid of the Americans who work, pray, like freedom and know which bathroom to use. Dorky Never Trumps call them “appalling” because the books aren’t lame – you know, like Never Trumpers are. Check them out!

We need to go back to being like the citizens of what once was known as Rome. We were the ones that slaughtered the Barbary pirates when all of Europe was too chicken to take them on. It took a couple of frigates and a few hundred Marines. We can do it again....and no I'm not proposing an invasion of Iran. We have other ways to deal with their government of misrule.


Sunday, January 5, 2020


Somehow my blog and I have lost the ability to post replies to comments as me. The signature block simply shows 'google account' and not me. I'll figure it out eventually but in the meantime, there won't be much commenting on the comments.
Also a good read. VDH knows the place pretty well. I know it better and agree with what he wrote.

Saturday, January 4, 2020


This was an interesting read about the middle east. It doesn't have the hectoring tone of a diatribe and it looks a lot like what I used to read on the siprnet. I have never heard of the coming water wars of the middle east but in contrast to the author I suspect high explosives will be involved in Sudan if not Turkey.

IIRC, Iraq was rumored to have the 4th largest military in the world right behind US, the Russians and Chinese. It appears that all of that is now gone and they are pretty much helpless against their neighbors Iran and Turkey. IIRC, Turkey had the largest military in NATO except for US. I wouldn't care to tangle with the Turks. My first soccer coach in high school was a Turk and we played for blood. As I recall, he was the only teacher in Huntsville High with a Ph.D and was properly addressed by all of us as Dr. Akbi.

It is an interesting experience watching almost the entire arab world fall apart over the last 5 years. It was monolithic in my youth as OPEC geared up and it appeared seamless for decades until all of a sudden Jimmy Carter managed to bring Egypt and Jordan to the table and finally get a lit peace for Israel. I notice the article didn't go into the relationship between Saudi Arabia and Israel and the potential threat they both share getting snuffed by Israeli fighter bombers getting clearance to fly over Saudi air space enroute to targets in Iran.

Iran is dabbling deeply in every arab state and they resent it, a lot. The author made repeated references to America's withdrawal from the realm of future conflict and while it didn't appear to be angry it still carried some of that as he wrote that Russia moved into the vacuum. Well, we moved into the vacuum the Russians left once and that is a colossal mistake. Let them enjoy playing with the arabs for awhile and they'll find it is a lot like playing with the Afghans.

OTOH, reading this kind of thing does make me wonder if one day I'll wake up and somebody will call and tell me that Washington was nuked overnight. That was how my day began on 9/11. I got a call at home telling me to turn on the tv.

Friday, January 3, 2020


I found this at instapundit and went looking at the source but the well was dry. However, I've now seen this a couple of times in different places and while it came out many years ago about some people living rent free in some people's heads, Trump takes the biscuit. He simply drives them crazy.

John Ringo emails:
So far Trump has gotten the Democrats and the media (repetitive) to:

Defend terrorism
Defend pedophiles
Defend rapists
Defend blackface
Defend mass murderers
Openly hate dogs.


As somebody there asked now that we've whacked the head of the IRGC elite force and the democrats are mistily calling for us to beware now because that made Iran mad, "what are they going to do now that they weren't already doing?" Yea. They kidnap and kill and attack embassies and blow people up and now what's going to change? Me? I'm staying away from crowds and I'll continue along, head on a swivel, eyes open, ears cocked and maintain full situational awareness to the best of my ability like I have since, oh, yeah, I reported to first ship in the Arabian Gulf in '84 where it seems Iranian backed terrorists were always looking for American scalps.


I do like the show and the movie. It would be nice if they did it again.


It appears that the left is all in a snit because the Orange Man killed one of the head terrorists in Iraq. Oh well, let them vent their fury as they imagine that this act was an act of war. I'll be honest, we've been at war with Iran since they seized our embassy back when Jimmy was President. Every Iranian knows we are at war but most Americans are clueless and imagine that we aren't really since there is very little shooting or bombing. Most Americans never heard of Nimble Archer or Praying Mantis and most Americans are ignorant of history. Japan knew America was at war with it when Roosevelt doubled down on sanctions and blocked the flow of oil to Japan before Pearl Harbor. The United States has been interdicting trade and commerce to Iran for decades and they know it.

Eliminating the commanding general of our enemy's field force is simply a part of the process of quiet war. Does it 'open' US up to attack? Yes, but then they've been attacking us for decades. I can live with that. The scary? The scary is Persians are smart. They're also ruthless. People here tend to heed their ingrown fears about nuclear. Screw nuclear. There are other forms of weapons of mass destruction. Those are the ones to fear. Still and all, I don't live in the Big Apple or DC and where do I think those weapons will be employed? Not here.

In 'The Third World War', General Sir John Hackett and other NATO generals imagined a nuclear war where the soviets and we engaged in a limited nuclear war. In both realms the leadership decided not to decapitate the enemy with a strike on the capital but instead nuked secondary cities of no account. Terrorists don't think that way. They always go for the jugular.

At this point in time, Iran is a terrorist state. It has been for over 30 years. They act like terrorists all the time so there will be little change in our relationship with them. I'd be fascinated if they mined the Strait of Hormuz or used coastal missile batteries against ships in the Gulf. Every ship inside the Gulf is vulnerable to even the ancient Styx missiles never mind the C801 and C802s. We didn't have any illusions back when I was young and standing officer of the deck on ships in the Gulf. We figured it was just a matter of time. I was disappointed by Stark. They were holding down Radar Picket Station North and failed to notice an Iraqi fighter bomber or its Exocet missiles. I suspect our forces are now a lot more alert then they were last year.


It's a theme that has been bouncing around since my sister came over last night for dinner after she and one of her boys got back from a New Year in San Diego. Her husband boarded a flight to China after they left for metroparkcentralis. The title, 'you don't know how lucky you are' boiled up from watching a clip of "House" on you tube. It was said by the "House" pater familias and it struck a chord with me. I was one of the lucky ones.

Born in '61 I missed all of the unpleasantness of the draft and Vietnam. I joined the military when I was 18 but there was no war. Went to the Persian Gulf for a year on the Middle East Force flagship and earned my credentials in a war zone but we were not at war with either Iraq or Iran.

I went back from time to time as Chief Engineer of ships in the war zone but the war we fought doesn't even have a name. We called it Praying Mantis but tell that to the average citizen on the streets in America and they'll turn themselves inside out looking for a big bug.

I was a department head of a mobile unit that was not mobilized for Desert Storm. I didn't lunge out of the gate to shout, me, me, me! I was content to wait until they mobilized my unit but they didn't. Later, years later, I became one of them again and was mobilized to serve as the Ops for thousands of men and women we mobilized to send over to OIF and the Med and Fuj and a number of other places.

My father wondered why I didn't shove myself forward to serve as a provincial reconstruction wallah or something and what could I say? The very best leadership I ever had in a war zone was when the 06 was 12,000 miles away? In my 30 years of experience nothing screwed up success like an 06 living in one's vest pocket. I didn't want to be that guy and executing a policy I didn't agree with struck me as a bad deal all around. I told him that if they wanted me, they had my address and my phone number.

And that's the way it worked with all services filling Army useless/stupid billets in country because the army could not wrap it's head around the internet of things and the simple fact that 70% of the 'staff' officers could do it just as well at home, sort of like the Chair Force learning that you didn't have to deploy drone drivers to the desert because one desert is just like all the other deserts and if you knew the first iota of leadership, you didn't screw your people needlessly. You saved it for when you had no choice.

All things considered, I was lucky. Sure I spent years in a war zone but it was tolerable because that's the way it was. Someday, not now, I'll write about the pure stupidity of using the sonar tilt to look at just the bottom for the mine anchors while driving in the mine fields because some twit thought that would be a good thing. Nevermind that one of us might have missed an actual mine in the volume and run in to it while the sonar was pounding the bottom instead of the volume.

When I was staff we absolutely didn't do this kind of idiocy.

Wednesday, January 1, 2020


We hope that you all have a happy and prosperous new year with friends and family. Best wishes for the new year.

Tuesday, December 31, 2019


As I mentioned earlier, I spent a portion of the day of Christmas Eve in the VA clinic in Metroparkcentralis. I had just had the MRI and was waiting for the Ortho and was sitting in the cafeteria having a late breakfast/early lunch when this lady came up to me and handed me a little paper bag.

This was in it. She gave a little paper bag to everybody in the cafeteria and then she vanished. I know the Church. It means I'll have to head over there soon and give back.

May you all have a very happy new year.


It looks like President Trump has struck again in the way that only he has employed successfully. I won't mourn the loss of Iraq to islam. They were heading down that road now for a long time and the only way back from that is blood and better theirs than ours. The thing the government of Iraq and our State Department wallahs fail to understand is pretty simple to grasp. If the Iraqi government who this embassy has spent 19 years aiding, fails to assist in repelling the attackers? We will walk away. We may even whistle and dust our hands as we do it. You see, the government of Iraq has an obligation; we have a gravely faltering momentum that has waned to non-existence now and 90% of Americans don't care if Iraq goes totally islamic theocracy. It's no skin off our nose because we don't care anymore.

The Marines we launched out of Kuwait to safeguard the embassy in Bagdhdad are just time killers while the embassy staff burn the dross of 18 years of failure to embrace the overwhelming nihilism of islam. All that stuff needs to burn but you can be sure the State Department fools will fail to burn the files containing the names and addresses of every Iraqi who ever aided the United States of America. It's what they do.

When Iraq's government fails overwhelming to protect the Embassy and the Green Zone, Trump will approve air strikes in direct support of the Embassy Marines and then when we've glassed the zone and massacred the attackers Iraq wouldn't stop, he'll decide enough is enough and we'll leave Iraq to ISIS and Iran and perhaps the new no-fly zone will be, "nothing out of Iraq" and there will be no more air service to or from that dismal Hell on earth.

Monday, December 30, 2019


I like this picture of young rebellion. I vastly prefer them to the current crop of rebellious youth.

I was also reminded that we are coming up on the 20th anniversary of one of the nation's most forgettable wars, The Y2K war came to a resounding fliffle on 1 January 2001. We at SPAWAR struggled mightily in your defense for almost a year to ensure that come January first there would be no news of note other than holiday celebrations that went bad. It wasn't a big problem for me since my program was purely the Inshore Boats of the USN and their only connections with the rest of the world were thoroughly covered by the serried ranks of the GPS boffins and the radios were also the purview of legions of carers who made sure that the radio spectrum would continue unabated as the new decade, century and millennium crashed over us. It goes without saying, we won.

Saturday, December 28, 2019


I see from Ace that this is a particularly dangerous time of year for falls. They can be far more hazardous than we tend to think. Let's be careful out there.

Friday, December 27, 2019


I've been a little off the game for the last week or so as life collided with me. I'm better now but was really hammered flat for awhile and while I came back into battery mentally the physical was somewhat harder to get back. It all started about 5 years ago when I went and looked at some debris left behind in San Diego. It amounted to some tons of debris and like an idiot I shifted through the wreckage looking for anything I wanted to salvage. It was while looking through all that stuff I tore the hell out of my knee causing it to swell up to roughly twice the size of the other knee. At that point I stopped looking, threw my golf clubs and some uniforms over my shoulder, boarded a plane and came home after turning all the rest over to a friend to get rid of however he wished.

That knee keeps coming back to bite me. The pain and swelling return out of the black without warning and it can be really quite painful and leads to an inability to sleep without disturbing people down the block when I move the leg in response to dream stimuli while I'm sleeping and scream. It doesn't make for restful nights. A plan of action and milestones was called for.

I saw the doctor and they were very very tricky about sussing out what caused the pain. The first one allowed as how it sure did look swollen and asked if it hurt. We had a chat about that. He got the 'attending' who came in, sat down in front of me as I sat there on the table and she touched one finger to just one side of my knee and asked if that hurt. Hell yeah it hurt! Not to be shouted down, she put the finger on the other side of the knee, roughly the same place and asked if that hurt. Hell yeah it hurt. She was touching me, not pushing and it was extremely painful.

Well, you all know what it is but it was news to me. While allowing as how in this case it was pointless they did want to resolve any other issues that might be part of the underlying problem and scheduled me for some x-rays while assuring me that what they suspected was wrong would only show up on an MRI. We did the x-rays and hoped for the best. I really am not fond of surgery. The MRI was done on Christmas Eve and I got the results this morning.

You know what gives one a warm fuzzy? Sliding toe first into an MRI with about 4 pounds of surgical steel holding one of your legs together with 13 increasingly 'iffy' screws. Nobody assured me that this stuff wouldn't come flying out once the magnetic field hit it so I can only assume that they knew it was non-magnetic. I guess they could read that off the manufacturer's label they saw when they examined the x-rays.

I have a visit scheduled with an orthopedist next week to go over things but for me the worst bit is that this thing comes and goes at random. I don't know what sets off each episode every year but whatever it is seems to be accelerating.

Plus I was sick.

Oh, and can't focus my right eye all that well. We'll see what Bates Eye Exercises do for that.

I'll probably drop a lot of posts here over the weekend, maybe, after we get back from the party. I've been taking notes but haven't turned them into words.

Wednesday, December 25, 2019


We hope that you all had a Merry Christmas and holiday!

Give a moment or two to remember all those now serving overseas this Christmas and wish them well now and throughout the new year.