Friday, October 31, 2014

Why They Hate Us

Truth Revolt isn't necessarily the kind of site I recommend, and Gavin McInnes is more than a little off-putting, though he does have the good sense to agree with me much of the time.  To explain why I am posting this link, then, I have to say that we will occasionally run across comments by people to the effect that if western countries would just stop invading Muslim countries and killing thousands of people, the Muslims would not be attacking us.

This is not true.

Say what you like about the followers of Christ, the Founder of Christianity is above reproach when it comes to advocating non-violence and acting virtuously.  I cannot and will not put Mohammed on the same level.  Islam appears to have been founded to establish an earthly kingdom by force where necessary.  Elements of Islam, particularly in Sufism, have managed to transcend the political and the earthly.  Most of Islam remains at war with those considered infidels.  This is what we need to face.

Anyway, here is what McInnes has to say.  Follow the link -- it may get blocked if you are at work -- and read the his entire argument (which includes some additional links).  The slightly sanitized bottom line:

At this point, you start getting what editors call, “example exhaustion.” After 10 examples of innocent countries being attacked by Muslims, you start to go, “Okay, I get it. They don’t hate us because of our foreign policy or Israel. They hate us because we are non-believers.” Unfortunately, the Western world’s appetite for excuses is as inexhaustible as the terrorist’s demands. Liberals refuse to blame the extremists even when the extremists themselves are trying to take credit. We’ve become an Onion sketch.

If you really respect Islam, open your ears and listen to what it has to say. It’s telling you to f*** off. Not because of what you’ve done but because of what you believe. Appeasing them is not going to change that. It’s going to fuel the fire. The only way we’re going to be able to combat terrorism is to stop denying reality and accept that tolerance of intolerance isn’t how we go forward. It’s how we go backward.

Updated to fix a typo and to add that I should have made the title of this post "The Tolerance of Intolerance".  

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Gazing Into My Brystal Call

 I do not see much for Tuesday's elections.  Around here, we have nothing going on in terms of battleground votes.  My Republican Congressman couldn't lose if he was found drunk and naked in the gorilla cage at the zoo.  At least he is not a lawyer.  He was an auctioneer and local radio "personality".  He's not a bad guy other than voting against shutting down the NSA, but I'm voting for whoever the Libertarian is.

I think the Republicans will pick up a few House seats, though I don't see that it will make much difference unless they pick a new speaker.

As far as the Senate races, I am baffled.  Polls are only as good as their selection models.  I suspect there are and more people like me who hang up on survey calls.  I've done it several times over the last month or so.  With the models being so inconsistent, I don't think the polls are reliable.  I tend to think the Republicans get the majority in the Senate, but I would not be shocked if they didn't.  The DNC may be overly optimistic about their net pick-up among governors.  Pennsylvania and Florida are probably Democrat pick-ups, but they could conceivably lose Colorado. 

I trust election results less and less, and, ultimately, I think the results of federal elections matter less and less.  If there is anything good coming out of the election of Obama and the ensuing federal tyranny, it might be that more people have awakened to how dangerous the Beltway Behemoth really is.  I hope so.  I'd hate to think we put up with this idiot and failed to learn a thing. 

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Killing Time

The U.S. Supreme Court stayed the execution of Mark Christeson.

In 1998, when Christeson was 18, he and a cousin broke into the home of Susan Brouk in rural Maries County, Missouri near the little town of Vichy on Highway 63, about ten miles north of where that road intersects I-44 at Rolla. The two men bound Brouk's 12-year-old daughter, Adrian, and 9-year-old son, Kyle.  Christeson then raped Brouk in her daughter's bedroom. 

Adrian recognized and identified Christeson's cousin, 17-year-old Jesse Carter.  Christeson decided that they "had to get rid of" the family.  Murderpedia gives the gruesome details:

At some point during the confrontation, Ms. Brouk and Kyle were both struck in the head with a blunt object. ...

They forced Ms. Brouk and her children into the back seat of Ms. Brouk's Bronco and also loaded her television, VCR, car stereo, video game player, checkbook, and a few other small items. Christeson drove down the highway, down a gravel road, and then across a neighbor's field to a pond at the edge of a wooded area.

They forced Ms. Brouk and her children to the bank of the pond. Christeson kicked Ms. Brouk just below her ribs with enough force that she was knocked to the ground.

Christeson then placed his foot on her mid-section, and reached down and cut her throat with a bone knife. She bled profusely, but she did not die immediately, and as she lay on the bank of the pond, she told Adrian and Kyle that she loved them.

Then Christeson cut Kyle's throat twice and held him under the pond water until he drowned. Carter pushed Kyle's body farther out into the pond so the body would sink.

At Christeson's direction, Carter retrieved cinder blocks from a nearby barn, and while there, heard Christeson fire a shot from one of the shotguns. When Carter returned to the pond, Adrian was struggling to free herself from Christeson.

Carter held Adrian's feet while Christeson pressed down on her throat until she suffocated, and Carter then pushed Adrian's body into the pond. While Ms. Brouk was still alive, but barely breathing, Christeson grabbed her arms and Carter grabbed her legs, and they threw her into the pond on top of her children's bodies. As she drowned, Carter went into the woods to get a long stick, which he used to push the Brouks' bodies further out into the pond.

Both Susan Brouk and her son Kyle -- remember this is a child of nine -- died, not from having their throats slashed but from drowning, helplessly bound, in the cold, murky water of a Missouri farm pond in the middle of January.  Christeson slowly and deliberately choked a little 12-year-old girl to death.

But he didn't have really good, expensive lawyers.  So, instead of being the 9th murderer to be executed by Missouri this year, he will get another shot at life in prison where he has spent nearly half his life already while taxpayers feed, clothe, and house him and foot the bill for his appeals.  

Susan Brouk and her children did not deserve to die.  Mark Christeson does.  At least that is the way it seems to me, but I am, after all, just a simple man.

Now I'm the kinda man that'd not harm a mouse
But if I catch somebody breakin in my house
I've got twelve guage shotgun waiting on the other side
Now don't go pushing me against my will
I don't want to have to fight you but I dern sure will
So if you don't want trouble then you'd better just pass me on by

As far as I'm concerned there ain't no excuse
For the raping and the killing and the child abuse
And I've got a way to put an end to all that mess
Just take them rascals out in the swamp
Put 'em on their knees and tie 'em to a stump
Let the rattlers and the bugs and the alligators do the rest

You know what's wrong with the world today
People done gone and put their Bible's away
They're living by the law of the jungle not the law of the land
The Good Book says it so I know it's the truth
An eye for and eye and a tooth for a tooth
You better watch where you go and remember where you been
That's the way I see it I'm a Simple Man

Monday, October 27, 2014

When Common Sense Equals Racism

As much as I love the Second Amendment, I am usually even more thankful for the First Amendment.  Despite the current assault on religious liberty and speech by militant homosexuals, we still haven't descended into the Hate Speech abyss. 

Breitbart London has this story about a 75-year-old British retiree who was harassed by authorities for six months before charges were finally dropped

His crime?  As he was being forced by airport security to remove his shoes, he remarked, "I'm not a Muslim, am I?" 

The security guard accused him of racism and called the police, telling them that he had been upset by the remark. After taking him to an office to be interviewed, the police allowed him to continue on his journey only to arrest him a week later as he was passing back through the airport.

That causes me to wonder if the screener was a Muslim.  We can't discriminate, right?  Also, since when does making another person "upset" constitute a crime of any sort anywhere? 

A threat for the purpose of intimidating someone can be a crime -- unless you work for the IRS or are a cop.  There's no evidence, as the police eventually admitted, that Mr. Griffith was attempting to intimidate or do anything other than express his exasperation and disgust at the thought that he was being treated -- without good reason -- as a criminal.

When you think about it, all these searches and ridiculous restrictions at airports are "unreasonable searches".  Ninety-nine point nine-nine-nine-nine percent of airline passengers would really like for the plane to stay in the air until it is supposed to land.  But everyone of us who boards a plane is treated like a Muslim suicide bomber.  That's not reasonable.

Another point to all this:

His case was adjourned by the Magistrates and was due to be heard last Thursday, but with just 24 hours to go the Crown Prosecution Service dropped the charge, as they conceded that there was not enough evidence to mount a case.

“I have never fallen foul of the law before and the whole affair has been a complete waste of police time, the court’s time, my time as well as taxpayers’ money. It has been incredibly stressful – all because I asked a question and apparently dared to use the M word,” Mr Griffiths said.

Frank Ferguson Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor for CPS East of England, commented “Following receipt of the evidential file a full review of the evidence took place.

“In order to successfully prosecute a charge of racially or religiously aggravated disorderly conduct, we first have to show that the language used was threatening or abusive and in these particular circumstances we could not show that to the high criminal standard required.”
So we have the tax money and police resources wasted on an investigation because a screener was upset.  Meanwhile, I'm sure there were actual crimes being committed that could have used those resources.  This is one reason that the whole idea of a "hate crime" is so contrary to good sense.  Cars are being stolen, homes burglarized, people being assaulted and even murdered, but the government thinks it has unlimited resources such that it can waste time and money and manpower prosecuting a 75-year-old man with a bit of a sense of humor.  

If the government and prosecutors and police departments have those kinds of resources, I need a tax cut.  

Friday, October 24, 2014

Pistol versus Rifle

As you know, there was a shooting in Canada.  Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, a felon who could not legally own a firearm, somehow acquired what was reported to be a .30-30 rifle.  He first murdered a soldier, Corporeal Nathan Cirillo, standing guard at the National War Memorial in Ottawa.  His next target was Parliament.  There he encountered Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers, who retrieved a handgun and killed the terrorist.

We won't even go into the bizarre coincidence that the murdering thug's mother is a highly-placed official on the Canadian Immigration Board.

IBD has a version of the story here.

Mark Steyn has some thoughts on the outrage as well

Montreal Gazette weighs in.

Back when the psychopath shot up the movie theater in Aurora, CO, using a .223 semi-automatic carbine, some people said that civilians with handguns would not have been able to stop him.

Mr. Vickers is not your average Canadian citizen.  He is former RCMP.  We can assume he is at least a fair-to-middling shot and knows how to use cover, and he was on his own ground, so to speak.

Now, certainly, given the choice, I would never to into a gunfight with a handgun.  Still, a handgun is better than nothing.  My Winchester 94 Trapper .30-30 is a sentimental favorite and not all that much of a disadvantage if it ever came to using it for self-defense.  I can tell you one thing for sure:  if I ever fired it off in the house without plugs or muffs, I would not hear anything for a week.  They are loud.  Not as loud as Dad's old Remington 760 in .30-06 with an 18-inch barrel but plenty loud.

Anyway, this encounter should remind us of the importance of training, because the man with the pistol doesn't always lose.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

More Unthinking

This time it's climate and economics, via Mises -- We're Doomed.

A university professor says that climate change, at this point, is irreversible.  Humanity is, apparently, going to be wiped out.  Mises Institute contributor, Ryan McMaken concludes this should allow us to relax and party on:

After all, if there’s nothing we can do to stop it, then we can just get on with our lives and leave humanity to dealing with environmental problems as they come, which is what homo sapiens have been doing for millennia.

So, McPherson’s pronouncement that it’s irreversible is a real load off. We can stop having the debate about whether or not to crush human economic progress with global regulatory efforts to massively reduce everyone’s standard of living via carbon emission controls (except for the super-wealthy and politically-well connected, of course).

Except the professor thinks, since we are doomed, we should immediately commit suicide as a species and "terminate industrial civilization".   As McMaken points out -- if you could get humanity on the whole to buy into something so stupid -- it would result in death for millions by starvation and disease. 

Meanwhile, the question is asked:  Can we buy extra time? McPherson answers: ‘What we can do is enjoy and create moments of joy while we are here…humans will reach the end of the line in a relativity short time’

Starvation is fun!

I suppose if we went back to horses and sailing ships, it would be harder for Ebola to move around.  We could all just starve in place.  The professor lives in a straw house -- straw bale, I'm sure -- presumably in Arizona.  I want to know, though, how he got to Australia.  My response to bozos like McPherson, Al Gore, and Robert Kennedy, Jr. is "you first".  

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The Unthinking

I don't like to link to Mr. Lane because of the nature of some of material, but he deserves the H/T.

Love the coat

You can listen to what the gentleman says, if you can afford to have your IQ dropped five points.  He feels that we should outlaw all guns and all potentially lethal knives.  Perhaps he is a vegan so he doesn't face the challenge of trying to carve the Thanksgiving turkey with a spoon.  I suppose we would have to have hammer and nail gun registration.  No more mail order or internet nail sales.  If you have a criminal record or psychiatric problems, No nails for you!

Making fun of a person like this is kind of like making fun of a retarded kid.  I feel bad about it.  This is a man who clearly has psychiatric issues himself, or, as we say down home, he ain't quite right in the head.   

He apparently doesn't know that making a lethal knife is not terribly difficult or that men were killing one another quite effectively in the Neolithic with stone and bone and wood.  Or that, worst of all, I can kill you with my brain.  And a shoelace.

I am not nearly as concerned with the Undead as I am with the ramifications of the Unthinking Apocalypse.  

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Household Net Worth Versus Income

Joseph Salerno at the Mises Institute details Four Reasons the Bernanke-Yellen Asset-Price Inflation May Be Nearing Its End

I think I have heard this song before.  In fact, I have sung it.  The choir is ready for the chorus, but the soloists keep coming up with more verses.

Reality is still real, but the reality is that a lot of behind-the-scenes manipulation has taken place to keep the Big One at bay.  People who have dropped out of the labor force are living on the federal government's ability to borrow money.  That is what has dropped the number of people actively looking for work to close to 6%.  Shale oil and fracking have stimulated the energy sector, created fear in the Saudis and OPEC, and driven down the price of gasoline.  No one really anticipated how big a development that would be four years ago.

The economy is like a patient who can't breathe on his own, but he is still alive.  Those of us standing around the bed are not sure how much longer this can go on.  Salerno shows a chart of U.S. Household Net Worth as a percent of GDP -- that is, the ratio of Household Net Worth to income, which is at an all-time high of around 475%.  Most of this is asset inflation from the stock market and home prices.  People who own their homes and have money invested in equities may well "feel" wealthy.  Salerno is skeptical:

In sum, I do not expect that the ratio will rise much above 500 percent — Americans have just not saved enough since 1995 to have increased their real wealth from 3.5 times to 5 times their annual income. Nor is there much reason to expect a plateau anywhere near the current level. Once interest rates begin to rise — and rise they must, whether as a result of Fed policy or not — the end of the asset price inflation will be at hand. The result will be another financial crisis and accompanying recession. The Fed and the Administration will no doubt attempt to bail and stimulate their way out but given the still dangerously enervated state of the financial system and the real economy, it will be like dosing a horse that has already been overdosed to death. Thus my forecast for the U.S. economy one year to two years out echoes that of Clubber Lang, the villain in the movie Rocky III. When questioned about his forecast for the forthcoming fight against Rocky, Lang replied, “Pain.” 
 Of course, the Krugmans of the world will tell the gloom-and-doomers that they have been wrong before.  We know that.  We also know they only have to be right once to be right. 

Monday, October 20, 2014

Massad Ayoob and the Lethality Hierarchy Myth

I somehow managed to completely lose the post from yesterday.  I don't remember what I wrote.

Here's the link.

A portrayals of firearms in the media are misleading:

We live in a world where the entertainment media and the news media alike have demonized the firearm as a frightening, high-efficiency killing machine. A myth has arisen that I call “hierarchy of lethality.” It is the false belief that the firearm represents the nuclear level of hand-held weaponry, and is somehow more lethal than other deadly weapons.

Ayoob then discusses other lethal weapons, including vehicles, knives, and blunt instruments:

A knife never jams. A knife never runs out of ammunition; you rarely see a gunshot murder victim who has been shot more than a few times, but any homicide investigator can tell you how common it is for the victim of a knife murder to bear twenty, thirty, or more stab and/or slash wounds. “A knife comes with a built-in silencer.” Knives are cheap, and can be bought anywhere; ... There is no prohibition at law against a knife being sold to a convicted felon. Knives can be small and flat and amazingly easy to conceal. 

 ... Many common tools and other objects have rough, irregular edges which are conducive to shattering bones and splitting flesh. The common claw hammer is a particularly deadly murder weapon. In blows to the head, it often punches completely through the skull wall and into the soft, vulnerable brain tissue beneath. Hammer murderers have told in their confessions how the hammer became stuck inside the victim’s skull so deeply that they had to step or even stomp on the head to break the hammer free for the next blow.

The knife, the club, the naked fist -- these are the weapons of the larger, the stronger, the younger, the quicker against the smaller, weaker, and the more vulnerable.  They are the weapons of the gang against the individual, of the stealthy against the unsuspecting.  The firearm is not wielded so much for its greater lethality as for its ability to equalize.

Friday, October 17, 2014


Polls right now favor Republicans in the upcoming House and Senate elections.

There are an increasing number of people who are unhappy with both parties.  I would be in that number.  Amnesty for illegal aliens is merely one of several issues that has separated me from the Republican Party in the last few years.  The Democrat Party's support of gun bans, unions, public sector unions, and nationalizing the health care system put them far beyond the pale.  Both parties are corrupt and lean toward the fascist economic model.

Nobody is perfect.  I loved Ronald Reagan, but he wasn't perfect.  I guess it goes the other way, too.  I detest Bill Clinton, but, compared to Obama, the worthless, lying, gun-grabbing, philandering SOB wasn't so bad.

The real difference between me and so much of my cohort from the '60s is that I have never had and have not now any use for authority beyond God and my parents.  Period.  No king but King Jesus.  Unfortunately, we seem to have reached a point where most people are only unhappy with authority they do not control.  They are fine with totalitarianism so long as it favors them and crushes the opposition. 

Republican voters -- me included, to my shame -- supported Bush despite Medicare Part D, No Child Left Behind, his push for amnesty, the Patriot Act, and the Department of Fatherland Homeland Security. 

I have awakened.  Possibly other people are starting to.  From the BI article linked above:

Republicans need to gain a net of six seats to win a majority in the Senate. They are also hoping to widen their advantage in the House. Though the pair of polls spelled bad news for the Democrats, the WSJ/NBC News pollsters noted a strong chance of "unexpected results" due to an unusually "volatile environment" created by military operations against the jihadist group Islamic State, the ebola epidemic, voter discontent, and signs of unusually high support for third party candidates.  

(Link from original)

This might be a sign that neither party has much to offer that we really want.  I rather hope that people are starting to lose confidence in the current two-party political system and in the whole idea that we should invest the federal government with unlimited power to control our lives.

There is a certain amount of insecurity in liberty.  You can fail.  Things can go wrong.  It's not always fair.  But it's a lot more fun. 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Houston Has A Problem

They have a lesbian mayor who has, with the city attorney, subpoenaed sermons from five Houston churches.

I'm guessing Joel Osteen's sermons were not among those.  Apparently some preachers spoke out against the city's embrace of militant homosexuals via its equal rights ordinance. 

Here's what Christians need to understand about getting in bed with the government.  When you accept a tax-exempt status, when your finances are based on tax-exempt donations, sooner or later, you are going to find out that you have to toe the government's line.  Preachers can blow and bluster all they want, but, to qualify for tax-exemption, they or the denomination went down on their knees before Caesar.  I understand why that is done.  I don't think it's apostasy or anything.  In more reasonable times, having tax-exemption was a perfectly legitimate, sensible thing to do. 

The world has changed.  The government and the social milieu are increasingly hostile toward authentic, biblical Christianity.  We are going to see more and more of this hate-speech type persecution aimed at Christians.  I don't think there is any way to avoid that completely.  But what churches can do, if they want to continue to speak the unfettered truth, is to blunt the tip of the spear by reconsidering their tax status.

Churches may want to start paying property tax in states where that's applicable.  They may have to spend money on good tax attorneys and accountants to figure out how to get the pastor and the pulpit out from under IRS scrutiny.  It can be done.  Parishioners, members and supporters may have to decide if they are going to continue to give if some or all of their contributions are no longer deductible. 

For someone like me, it is no big deal.  I no longer have enough non-charitable deductions to make itemizing worthwhile, but there are many for whom it could become a sacrifice.  In the end, we all have to decide if we will serve God or Mammon.  We can't do both. 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

A Second Nurse Infected

As you've heard, I'm sure, a second nurse who was in contact with Duncan has tested positive

The nurses are complaining about the protocols being inadequate and inconsistent.  That may be.  It seems odd that none of the family has shown symptoms.  Bodily fluids, even in the most minute amounts, may contain the virus.  A cough or a sneeze suspends fluids in the air.  If Duncan was on a ventilator, for example, those surfaces were thoroughly contaminated. 

How long does it take the virus to mutate until it is an airborne contagion?  Had it already started to mutate in Duncan?  Is this a matter of the hospital not taking adequate precautions, or is what we are seeing the result of a new means of transmission? 

Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times is enemy action. (Ian Fleming).  

The enemy here is Ebola, but it seems to have allies at the CDC.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Talked Me Into It

Yesterday was official Columbus Day, and it was raining off and on.  We've had over six inches of rain the last week, which is great.  My pond is back up to its normal level.  There was still plenty of water in it, but it's always nice to see more.

My nephew and my son have been after me to buy a new rifle.  I keep telling them I can do everything I want with what I have.  A new rifle in a different caliber means a whole bunch more expense in terms of mounts and optics and dies and components.

Since it was raining and I didn't feel like playing outside, I went to Academy Sports, and they have the Remingtons back in after the recall.  The Remington 700 ADL -- synthetic stock, matte finish, ugly as mud fence except for the lines -- was available for $380.  There was a .25-06.  I always thought that was a cool caliber, but I've never had one.  I do now.  I even made it through the NIC without a delay this time.  Destiny.

It looks like I need 87-grain bullets and 117-grain bullets and IMR4831.  I have 5000 or so Large Rifle primers so I don't need to worry about that for a while.  I'm looking at scopes.  I'll pick up some loaded ammo so I can get her sighted in and have some brass, and I need dies.  Without optics or ammo, it's kind of hard to figure out how she'll shoot.

Once I get her dressed and fed, I'll post a picture and do a review.    

Friday, October 10, 2014

Judicial Revolution

No offense to anyone, but homosexual marriage is an oxymoron.  If people want to set up legal contracts that name a next of kin, nothing stops them from doing that.  If two homosexual men want to be one another's heirs, I'm pretty sure the legal paperwork for that won't cost much more than tuxedo rental.

I'm a live-and-let-live kind of person.  Do what you want, as long as you're not interfering with what I like to do and not harming me or some innocent person. Nevertheless, when my state had a ballot initiative defining marriage as solely between one man and one woman, I voted for it, not because I hate homosexuals, but because that is what marriage is.  We are already seeing the consequences of allowing marriage to be, not redefined, but defined away.  The destruction of a Christian's bakery business at the hands of the gay gestapo is one example.

I would argue that marriage has long been under siege from no-fault divorce laws.  Adultery has always been a problem.  People do not take their vows seriously as it is.  Turning marriage into a joke and a sideshow is not going to help.  Marriage is the basic institution upon which a stable and civilized society is built.  Destroy marriage and family and you rend the fabric that binds us.

State after state decided, a few years ago, that it would be good to codify the definition of marriage.  By overwhelming majorities of the popular vote in most states, this was done.  Then courts stepped in and began to unravel those democratically endorsed amendments.  Federal courts have overturned defense of marriage acts, and the Supreme Court has decided not to hear appeals thus allowing the refutations to stand.

So, that's the end of it, right?  If the Supreme Court says something is unconstitutional, that's it.

Actually, that is not how it is meant to be.  Pat Buchanan quotes Jefferson in saying ... to cede such authority to the Supreme Court “would place us under the despotism of an oligarchy.” Was he not right?

Buchanan, not someone with whom I always agree, goes on to talk about Supreme Court decisions that have secularized our schools and other public institutions without much more than a whimper from the American people.

I basically have two reasons for not wanting a Democrat president:  gun control and Supreme Court nominations.  Like most, I have gotten used to the idea that nine people in black robes are the final arbiters of right and wrong.  Buchanan denies that this is correct:

Each branch of government, wrote Jefferson, is “independent of the others and has an equal right to decide for itself what is the meaning of the Constitution in the cases submitted to its action.”
“No branch has the absolute or final power to control the others, especially an unelected judiciary,” added Quirk.

Congress has the power to remove cases from judicial review.  Buchanan's friend, the late William Quirk advocated this:

When Congress enacted the Defense of Marriage Act, Bill Quirk urged it to utilize Article III, Section 2 of the Constitution, and write in a provision stripping the Supreme Court of any right to review the act.
A Republican-controlled House and Senate with sufficient libertarian sympathies could restrict the power of the Judicial Branch to legislate from the bench.  I'm sure the Executive Branch and federal judges would kick and scream, but that's the way it is supposed to work.

We have serious and growing problems in this country.  The federal government is far too massive and powerful for liberty-minded people.  There is more and more talk about a break up of the United States and secession.  If sufficient numbers of people become sufficiently dissatisfied with the federal government's bureaucratic overreach and corruption, the politicization of the IRS, the militarization of various departments from Homeland Security to Education, and the inability of the government to control the borders and protect citizens from terror and health risks, secession may become a viable option.

In the mean time, we ought to fight against judicial tyranny with every possible tool, and one of the best tools is encourage Congress to restrict the Court's right of review on sensible measures.

UPDATE:  On the whole gay marriage thing, Gay Patriot suggests the slope might be a little slippery after all.      

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Guess Who Gets To Pay

... the estimated half a million dollars it has cost to care for the self-centered idiot who brought Ebola to North America.

We will pay for it in taxes, in the deficit, in inflation, in increased insurance premiums.  It takes almost no time at all in an intensive care unit with a ventilator to run up big money.  I know all too well.  The hospital doesn't eat those costs.  Obamacare isn't going to fix it. 

This is one patient.  There may be another already sick in Dallas. 

Ebola will be expensive not only in terms of human suffering but in dollars.  We cannot save the world, but we can do our best to keep this plague out of the United States. 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Ebola, Porous Borders, and Roosting Hens

The Weekly Standard carries some comments from Marine Corps General John F. Kelly about  the possible problems if Ebola hits Central and South America.

We already have an uncontrolled invasion of illegals from Latin American countries.  A plague of Ebola would be one more incentive. 

Kelly told an audience at the National Defense University in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday that, if the disease reaches Central America, "it’s literally, ‘Katie bar the door,’ and there will be mass migration into the United States." He also said with certainty that "there is no way we can keep Ebola [contained] in West Africa."

He also speculates on the role human trafficking might play in spreading this disease.

A lot of this sounds like melodrama, hype, and panic.  Government agencies are always looking for excuses to expand their budgets.  A plague will do as well as anything.  However, we do need to seal the border.

Not to be callous, but didn't DHS or some other bunch of federal bureaucrats buy millions of rounds of hollow-point handgun ammo?  I have a suggestion as to where they might want to use it.

OK, that might be just a little bit callous -- but then so is allowing our kids and grandkids to be exposed to a deadly virus we could have stopped if we had tried.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014


We were at a restaurant a couple of days ago.  It must have been a little slow in the section our waitress was working.  When she picked up the money, instead of just thanking us and walking away, she started up a conversation about the meal which evolved into her pulling out her phone to show us pictures of her cat.  He is only 17 weeks old, orange and white.  He has been neutered and also de-clawed.

I understand, the girl is a college student and shares an apartment with another girl.  You have to be concerned about furniture and the cat doing damage to the apartment.  He's never going to be an outside cat.  He really doesn't need claws.

Cats with claws can defend themselves and climb trees to escape danger.  They can also hunt and kill to feed themselves, but, sometimes, they kill songbirds.  Maybe we should de-claw all cats, or breed naturally de-clawed cats.

I can't do that.  Claws are part of a cat's nature.  They are predators.  They kill other creatures to live.  Hunting and killing is in their DNA.  You don't really have to teach it to them.  Some are better at it than others.  Some seem to have the killer instinct bred out or mostly suppressed.  Those are not much different than prey animals -- sort of an odd, short-eared rabbit.

Yes, I'm still talking about cats, but it does seem to be applicable in other areas, doesn't it?  We talk about sheep and wolves and sheepdogs.  Perhaps we ought to consider throwing in the de-clawed cat analogy.  Sheep don't turn into sheepdog nor wolves into sheep, but you can de-claw a feline and make it more or less completely dependent upon you.  It remains a cat, one of the most efficient little killing machines on the planet, though it can no longer act according to its nature.

There are a lot of people who think we ought to de-claw humans.  Weapons are dangerous.  Sometimes they are misused and abused.  The thing is, though, the government can take all my guns and all my knives, but it does not change my nature.  I am not and never have been a wanton, wasteful killer of animals, but I'm still a killer.  I certainly don't want to ever have to kill another human.  So far, so good.  Nevertheless, should it ever become necessary, I am capable of killing.

As humans we can sublimate our instincts, but sublimation is learned and not a natural phenomenon.  It may not be learned consciously by instruction.  I think it's mostly by modeling.  If people, men in particular, are not taught how to properly handle aggressive, violent, and predatory feelings and impulses, they will have a hard time living in a civilized society.  You can take away the father figures and the role models, but you can't turn a male into a female.  You can take away the weapons, but if the instincts are not channeled, you will have outbreaks of pathological behavior, assaults, murders, muggings, rape, property destruction, etc.

You can try chemical de-clawing, but I haven't seen much evidence that that works well.  Mass shooting seem to have some correlation to prescriptions of psychotropic drugs.

It should not surprise us that the population centers with the highest rates of children born out of wedlock, the most absent fathers, and the least opportunity for positive outlets to channel the predatory nature have the highest rates of violence and crime.

The answer is not to de-claw the well-adjusted.  

Monday, October 6, 2014

Targets of Opportunity

You've probably heard about the Little Rock, Arkansas, realtor, Beverly Carter who was murdered.  It has led, around here, to stories and comments about the dangers realtors face.  That's understandable.  My wife worked in real estate for a short time, long before cell phones.  So many realtors are women, and it always seemed to me that there would be some risk involved. 

We pray for Mrs. Carter's family.  It is a devastating and tragic loss.  We're not going to blame the victim.  It was the result of a cruel, wicked, selfish, inhuman act by a parasite, a worthless career criminal. 

We do hope, though, that people will be motivated to think about what happened to Mrs. Carter and make an effort to better protect themselves and their loved ones.

First, let's focus on the perpetrator who has admitted that he went after Mrs. Carter because she was a "rich broker", a woman who "worked alone", and, therefore, an easier and more convenient target for a predator.   

I may have related this story before because it is so different than the myth.  I used to spend a lot of time with convicts.  If you are sitting or standing around with a bunch of guys, it doesn't matter who they are, you get to talking.  One boy was talking about stealing cars -- which was not what he was busted and serving time for.  In the course of the conversation, I asked how difficult it was to hotwire a car.  He said, "I don't know.  I only stole the ones with the keys in them."

A predator is not looking for a challenge.  It's like the old joke about outrunning a grizzly bear -- you don't have to -- just make sure you can outrun at least one of the guys with you.  The harder you can make it for a criminal to take advantage of you, the less likely it is that you will be a victim.  That's practically a truism.  I'd even go so far as to say that the harder you make it look, the less likely you are be victimized.  Criminals aren't psychic -- most aren't terribly intelligent, but they are often experienced in reading people and situations.  They have nothing better to do, in most cases, than watch and wait for the best opportunity.

When you get out of your vehicle at the store or even at the gas station, make a habit of pulling your keys out of the ignition and putting them in your pocket.  Christmas is coming.  You are going to be carrying bags and packages out of stores and the mall.  Don't overload yourself.  Pay attention to the people around you.  Have a place to hide your stuff in the car. 

My wife sometimes leaves her purse in our rig.  We always have a cooler in the back seat of the truck, and I have her put it in there.  Maybe someday a guy who is desperate for a beer will break my window.  Nothing is perfect.  Just don't make their decision easy.

If you notice someone watching you, sometimes it is a good idea to make eye contact.  This is debatable.  I've had New Yorkers tell me that is a good way to start a fight where they are from.  I would not recommend staring at strangers in New York or any place else.  On the other hand, if I am alert and aware of what is going on around me, as I should be, if I observe someone observing me, there is probably a reason for it.  Perhaps they know me.  Perhaps, me being remarkably average, I look like someone they know.  Perhaps they've just never seen anybody quite so hard-looking.  Or, their motive may be more sinister.  In any of those cases, looking back at them to let them know you are not oblivious is appropriate.

In crowds, carry your wallet somewhere other than your hip pocket.  On the other hand, I would rather see my wife lose her purse than have her choked or dragged down and bounced off the concrete because she had the strap over her head.  If I'm with her, I don't have to worry because I end up carrying the stupid thing most of the time.  Women should carry their phone, cards, and license in a pocket and just let the thief have the hair spray, mousse, mascara, eyeliner, lipstick, powder, silly putty, wood filler, perfume, hand sanitizer, wipes, tissues, combs, brushes, and lead bars in the bag. 

Shoot, it would be another excuse to go shopping. 

Don't rid yourself of a measure of healthy cynicism.  Not everybody is nice or trustworthy or truthful.  Not everybody is what they claim or appear to be.  Most of the people I know are decent, good people in most ways.  But then most of the people I know are people I work with or people I've gone to church with or professional people of some sort.  Really, other than some of my family members, I usually don't have any dealings with the criminal class anymore.  But that doesn't mean they don't exist, and it doesn't mean that I won't encounter them from time to time.  It's fine to hold the ladder for a stranger, but it's not always good to let a stranger hold the ladder for you.   

Also, take some self-defense classes, not because it will make you a badass, but because it will teach you not to panic and give up if you get punched in the face.  Again, this is what muggers and thugs usually count on.  They don't want to fight.  They want to sucker punch somebody which will often intimidate and cow the person struck.  If you fight back, as we saw in the security camera video a while back, the attackers will often try to get away. 

On a related note, as we said in the linked post, it matters where you are and what time you are there.  There are parts of town that are sketchy any time, and there are parts that get sketchy at times.

Obviously, I tend to recommend that people have a weapon.  If you want to get a concealed carry permit -- something that is, by the way, not necessary in Arkansas where "constitutional carry" is the rule -- and carry a firearm, that's good. 

Do not carry a weapon with which you have not trained.

Do not carry a weapon with which you are not familiar and comfortable. 

Do not carry a weapon if you are not certain you can use it if it ever came to that. 

Do not deploy a firearm and say that you will shoot unless you are prepared to shoot and keep shooting until the threat ends. 

The time to decide if you can and will use a weapon is before you stick it in your pocket, not when you have to use it.  When you need a weapon, there is no time for hesitation or debate. 

The Doctor in the White Hazmat Suit

This is from a few days ago.  Dr. Mobley is a local.  He's a microbiologist and ER trauma specialist.  I will add one caveat in that he is apparently associated with medical marijuana.  I don't think that necessarily makes him a kook, but it does, with the protective gear stunt, lead one to think the doctor might be something of an attention-seeker. 

My view is that trusting countries like Liberia to do the screenings for Ebola is a recipe for disaster.  In that, I think Dr. Mobley is correct:

Mobley says there aren't controls in place to stop the spread. 
"I came through customs and immigration at the busiest airport in the world last night.  They didn't ask me where I'd been.  They didn't thermo-scan me.  They didn't ask me whether I'd been sick.  They asked me if I had tobacco and alcohol, and that was it.  Where's the screening?  This is irresponsible," Mobley said, after arriving in Springfield.
He's calling for protocols and procedures now, not only at airports, but hospitals and clinics, or he believes Ebola will run rampant. 
"I've been following epidemics and pandemics all my life," Mobley said.  "My admonishment, my suggestion, my plea: start the protocols and plans now!"

The TSA has time to strip-search Grandma and demand that old Christian hillbillies take off their baseball caps and surrender their Mountain Dew, but they don't have time to stop travelers coming in from infected countries that should be under quarantine?

I detest the TSA.  In their zeal to avoid profiling, they broke the zipper on a brand-new bag that I checked last time I flew -- which may be the last time I ever fly.  At least we could put the goons to doing something useful.  Especially if we are not going to severely restrict travel into the U.S. from plague-ridden hellholes.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Garden Variety

This is one of those days when you have no doubt that winter is on its way.  I'm showing 52 degrees right now.  It will be down in the 30s by dawn tomorrow -- we hope the upper 30s.  There are still blooms and green tomatoes on my vines.

No fall garden this year, but I do have maybe enough apples left to do one more canner.  I have 25 or 30 quarts in the pantry along with a lot of green beans and tomatoes.  It was a tough year, partly because of the weather, but also because my wife was sick so much of the time.  She has had a struggle.  A lot of things I just didn't bother to plant.  I had beds that I didn't cultivate except to clear out the weeds.

Oddly enough, one thing that did do well was watermelon.  I planted a few hills, and, since I planted them without the boss's supervision, for once, they were properly spaced.  I didn't have any monsters, but they were moderate in size with excellent sweetness and flavor.  Last year I planted two heirloom varieties, Mountain Hoosier and something like Garrisonian.  Probably the seeds I saved were a cross, but they did well.  This isn't the Bootheel.  I'm never going to raise any prize ones up here.  It's still fun. 

The strawberries are making a strong come back.  The blackberries look good. My nectarine tree got snapped off in a windstorm.  I finally took the stump out last week.  I'm looking around for a replacement (or two) for it -- peach or nectarine, I'm not too particular.

I have one surviving English walnut.  So, last fall, I dug a black walnut sprout out of the woods -- that was fun -- to plant next to the English one.  I was astounded that it lived but it did.  The English walnut is about three feet tall while the black walnut is about half that.  If the grandkids keep this place, maybe a generation yet unborn will have some English walnuts to go with their hickory nuts.  I'm kind of managing for hickories.

With the fruit trees, grapes, blackberries and strawberries, I normally get a pretty good return of calories for energy expended.  Beans do all right, too, because they are easy to raise.  Melons and squash are nutrient-rich and sustainable.

You have to grow tomatoes, but I haven't had any luck growing them from seed.  I did try to harvest some carrot seed this year.  We'll see how that works. 

If I were trying to live exclusively on what I can raise, I'd need to add some chickens -- which my wife vehemently opposes, a milk cow or two, and hogs.  I like bacon and sausage, but I'm not big on ham and other pork products, and I don't like messing with hogs.  However, you can't beat them for efficient conversion of garden scraps, leftovers, acorns, and whatever else into quality meat.  

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Mexico Is Not Our Friend

House Republicans put on a show in hopes of convincing Mexico to release Marine Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi.  Tahmooressi is guilty of making a wrong turn that caused him to cross the border into Mexico.  He had a personal firearm in the vehicle and was arrested when he attempted to re-cross the border.  He has been in a filthy Mexican jail for six months.

Mexico has been and continues to be a failed nation.  The government is thoroughly corrupt.  It is a Spanish-speaking version of Illinois on a larger scale. 

A decent president who placed American interests above those of the globalist oligarchy would have already done something to secure this Marine's release.  We can get along fine without Mexico or Mexicans.  Mexico would have a harder time getting along without us.

The solution is really simple.  Not a truck, not a bus, not horsefly crosses the border until Sgt. Tahmooressi does.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Congrats, Royals

Has Ned Yost turned into Whitey Herzog?

I am not a Royals fan. I followed along on this game.  Most of the names I do not recognize outside of Billy Butler and Hosmer.  It's all the AL, so, really, who cares?  Nevertheless, it's nice to see the A's get knocked out.  A betting person would be wise to put money on the Angels -- arguably the best team in baseball, in a five-game series with three at home.

The Royals have been extremely streaky this year.  There have been stretches where they could not be beaten.  That wasn't how their regular season ended, so I count this game as a fluke.  It was a good one, though.  They didn't quit despite being down five runs going into the eighth, down one in the bottom of the ninth, and down again by one in the bottom of the twelfth.  Fans were leaving Kaufman after the seventh, and our local on-scene sports reporters were downcast.

I'd call the odds of another I-70 Series less that 5%.  That, of course, would be my preferred match-up with the Cards in a four-game sweep --  revenge for '85 and Game 6.  No, you blue devils, twenty-nine years, nay, a hundred years won't erase the stigma you bear.

We'll see how Pittsburgh does tonight.  The Giants and Pirates are evenly matched on games won in the regular season as well as run differentials, though the Pirates both scored and allowed more runs.  Pittsburgh was 20-12 against the West while the Giants were 16-16 against Central teams.  I'd give Pittsburgh a slight advantage.

UPDATE:  The Pirates were shutdown cold by SF pitching.  I only caught a minute halfway through.  Pretty impressive. 

My off-the-wall, certainly wrong prediction for the Series at this point is an all-East, I-95 corridor contest:  Baltimore versus Washington, with the Orioles taking the trophy in five games. 

Bulldogs of the Purple Page

Pulling a Dustbury with my spam-ment of the week:  I was able to find good info from your bllog posts. My page bulldog feel comfortable.
It's just a small part of what we do here at PFD, but it might be the most important part.  Perhaps I should put it in the header:  Making Page Bulldogs Comfortable Since 2010.