Monday, April 30, 2012

They Ban because they can.

A veto on firearms legalization in Minnesota has John Hinderaker pondering things.

I am writing this a few minutes after returning from a shooting range, which puts the politial debate over firecrackers and sparklers in an odd light. I went shooting today with my son, Ed Morrissey and his son, and Mitch Berg. We had five firearms among us–four semiautomatics and a revolver, a .22, a couple of 9 millimeters and a .38.

The five of us had a lot of fun. We fired off hundreds of rounds and, I think it is fair to say, were never in serious danger. But when I got home and read the news story about Governor Dayton vetoing the legalization of firecrackers, it made me wonder: if the nanny state thinks firecrackers are far too dangerous for citizens who must be utterly incompetent, then what must the nanny state make of Glocks, Rugers, Sig Sauers and Smith and Wessons? Is there any possible way the nanny state would allow its citizens to possess such weapons, if it had the option of banning them, as it bans firecrackers and, until recently, sparklers?

Emphasis added.

I will note that firearms are better suited to self defense than fireworks. But I somehow doubt the nanny state would approve of firearms over fireworks for that reason.

Though needs' got nothing to do with it.

This is similar to states that ban gravity knives, switchblades, and other "evil" knives but is perfectly fine with concealed carry.

Via Glenn Reynolds who notes this is a theme he's oft repeated.

Anti-Science Ignorant Rabble you say?

Hey remember when the Tea Party broke into a State-Funded Research lab and took it over in a thoughtless protest of the "theft" of taxpayer money and in doing so ruined years worth of experiments dedicated to feeding the poor and hungry?


Well, Zombie has something like that: Occupy going after a farm and seizing the means of production.

The farm they seized was not a working farm per se, but rather a “research farm” for the University of California, near its Berkeley campus. The only difference between the way the farm used to be (prior to a week ago) and the way it is now is that the Occupiers have transformed what was essentially a well-maintained and important open-air laboratory into a disheveled and ultimately purposeless pretend-farm for trustafarian dropouts.

Extra bonus for paranoid conspiracy theories against genetically modified crops... which are not being researched at the protested laboratory farm.

So stupid, anti-science, and anti-evolution.

Go to the link to see photos of the preening stupidity.

The scientists themselves are for the most part royally pissed off at the Occupiers and some may have years of work ruined by the Occupiers’ juvenile prank.

Though some of their coworkers have a different view:

Some leftist U.C. professors are lecturing today at the farm to show their solidarity with the Occupiers (and to thoughtlessly reveal their antagonism against fellow faculty members whose research at the farm was interrupted/spoiled by the Occupation), including Laura Nader (Ralph Nader’s older sister, famous for helping to lead the field of anthropology toward self-critical Political Correctness); Gill Hart, a Gramscian anti-capitalist; and Paul Rabinow, a deconstructionist anthropologist. What do any of these professors know about farming, or plant biology? Nothing. But hey, they know about the significance of what it means to spout off a bunch of revolutionary socialist verbiage while absconding with stuff that isn’t yours. And that will make the Occupiers feel ever so snug in their smugness. Group hug!"

Who cares if you destroy your colleagues' laboratory by taking it over and planting your own nursery bought plants and building a tent city. Teaching a lesson to the man is more important than... teaching and research:

"Before the Occupation, the Gill Tract was an agricultural research farm where twenty-somethings getting their PhDs would work the fields to grow crops, as they researched biology or how to raise better, healthier plants. But now, after this incredible revolution by Occupy, the Gill Tract has been utterly transformed into a farm where twenty-somethings work the fields to grow crops. The only difference is that before, the farm served a scientific function to improve society, and was managed by experts and hard-working students doing meaningful research; but now, it’s run by a bunch of smug amateurs and dropouts who plant store-bought seedlings in the middle of what once was a controlled research environment.

There you have it, actual academic work and development that could help the hungry take a backseat to playing commune farm. More and more it seems that much of "higher" education is just a half decade of "young-world-changer" fantasy camp, all at the low low price of a few luxury cars.

And in comment to an Occupy sign of "Do Not Cross" following a sign of "Our Parking Lot":

Hypocrisy, thy name is Occupy. When society draws boundaries, builds fences, and makes rules, Occupy gets to violate them at will. But once they’ve seized control, Occupy immediately starts making new rules and new boundaries that everyone else is supposed to honor. Perhaps that’s the new Occupy motto: “Rules for thee, but not for me."

Rules are for the proles, not the vanguard of the Revolution.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

A quick bit of advice...

If you're working a chronograph bring a pair of field glasses so you can get a reading without having to cross the line of fire. It'll save you a lot of time and hassle.

On a related note, the testing went well. I've still got to ponder the results some and think about my next loads.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Another sampler pack.

I became one of those shooters that brings a logbook to every range trip so gradually I hardly noticed it...

But it's vital for handloading, especially if you use a chronograph. I also can see the benefits for practicing and recording your own performance and any malfunctions. So it's a practice I recommend heartily.

I took my 255 grain castings from yesterday and made up four lots of five.

From left to right: Winchester Silvertips, Buffalo Bore Lead Round Nose Flat Top, Powerball, Federal round ball, hand cast 255 grain, and hand cast 230 grain. In background is a cylinder of more 255 bullets and 2 100 count red boxes of spare handloaded cartridges.

This was to fill out the matrix of two different overall cartridge lengths and two different powder grain loads. So when I'm at the range I'll be able to get velocities of each lot and should be able to separate the affect of each on that particular load.

(Okay technically I made up 3 of those lots today, as you can see in the picture I had some of the "baseline" configuration already made).

Overall length has an effect on the velocity of the bullet via two mechanisms. The deeper you seat the bullet the more force is required to remove it on ignition, also the deeper the seat the less initial volume there is within the case upon ignition. The question of how much seating depth effects velocity (and pressure) depends on a host of factors from case and bullet geometry, to case crimp style, to powder burn rate, to primer type. But at least with this particular load out I should be able to get something of an idea of the effect at work.

The effect of powder on velocity should be clear enough. Though again the effects are non-linear and there are considerable contributing and limiting factors. Also keep in mind all the redline limits on your load data and take care with your loads so you don't have something go wrong.

Also in a previous session, I sized some of my 230 grain castings and did them with the standard powder charge and overall length and will compare them to the unsized ones from a previous lot. This will tell how bullet diameter (0.452" versus 0.451") will affect velocity. Again for this particular load.

I'll note that my 230 grain castings don't need resizing to be assembled into a cartridge, but my 255 grain castings do. This is because the larger diameter profile on the 255 grain bullet actually prevents headspacing if not resized.

I also have some factory defensive loads to test. And some factory plinking loads to test for calibration and the effect of barrel length on velocity.

I should have realized what would happen when an engineer gets into handloading. And yes I realized that sample sizes of 5 are quite small, but this is just preliminary work.

At least Nixon didn't use his enemies list to gin up support

Here we go, Obama's blaming secretive oil billionaires and their stealth campaign against him.

Why yes... the President of the United States is openly engaged in conspiracy theories to blame his failures. Next he'll go after the hoarders and wreckers and Kulaks.

And now we have an enemies list and the president openly calling out people who dare to donate to a political rival of his. Using the power of the State to go after those that dare challenge his rule?


This should send a chill down everyone’s spine. Imagine having the most powerful man on Earth singling you out by name then slandering you for donating to his opponent’s campaign?

More here, specifically on how Obama has a websight that names names and builds a handy dandy list of enemies of the people. Again Nixon's list wasn't used as a way to encourage supporters to volunteer and line up and give him money.

While Obama today is speaking to troops in Ft. Stewart Georgia who defend our freedom from enemies abroad, the Commander in Chief himself is assaulting our electoral freedom directly from White House.

One can only imagine how much ink and bandwidth the media would have used to show outrage if in 2004 President George W. Bush’s campaign had a similar web site denigrating John Kerry’s major donors.

Like I said, start weeping for our nation.

It says a lot about the kind of man Obama and even more about the people who find this a persuasive argument.

Consider the kind of person that wants the President of the United States to go out on national television and name names with the intent to shame and put on notice people who dare to question him.

Consider the kind of person who sees this and applauds the president and thinks that Obama's the one being the hero and is the underdog in this situation.

The kind of person who does think it's wrong and immoral that people can do what they want with their money, even if it means giving it so someone who dares to defeat the president.

The kind of person who thinks this is Justice:

[18:49] <+THOTatWORK> oh no I had noting to do with the black panther visiting the donors of the republican nominee

From GBC. Hope and Change.

On a somewhat related note, the liberal flacks are trying to discredit Romney by saying that 1) Romney beleives in "an America driven by freedom" and 2) That such a view is radical and unworkable.

So there you have it, the technocratic, mandate loving, anti-gun, big goverment, Romney is far too much of a radical Wookie for the libs. Which says intersting things about their support for Obama, and that they think "This guy's for Freedom. Run!" is also fertile ground for mudslinging.

And it shows that they're out and out against liberty and freedom, seeing it as a threat to "responsible governance".

Hell, all the examples of "good governance" at the link are ones where the "nessecisty" to subvert the Constitution and limited goverment is proudly displayed. Not to mention the bloated fiscal mess the Great Society, the New Deal, Mecicare, Medicade, and the Stimulus have wrought.

Also one has to love a guy who breathlessly cheers Trustbusting and Too-big-to-Fail bailouts in the same sentance. I suppose industry dominating oligarcs are only bad when it's the wrong oligarcs in charge.

Which may explain the opposition to Romney: he's the wrong lizard.

Though at least Romney seems smart enough to not openly act like the Presidente of a People's Banana Republic.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

"That theory, and many others, have enormous power and value because they have been validated by evidence...

Bill Whittle explains the dangers of love of theory and the importance of evidential validation:

That new pants feeling.

Is made even better when you realize that your pants make humorless scolds that want to take your freedoms away angry.

You see since the "secret" that Woolrich was making clothing designed for CCW came out. Many of the Antis have freaked out and demanded a boycott.

Secret is in quotes because it seems the antis didn't get angry until the New York Times did a, shockingly positive, profile of the garment line.

Well, we'll see how well the anti's boycott goes, I predict it'll be as much of a success as their Starbucks boycott.

Actually, I lie, I think it'll be worse, because I'm pretty neutral to Starbucks, but I really like these conceal carry pants (for one they've actually got reinforced seam stitching), and I bought more of these pants without knowing it got the antis angry.

And I know I'm not alone on that.

And as a bonus today is the last day for free shipping on Woolrich's site if you use the promo code: 4DAYFREE

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Just give 'em what they want?

No, not talking about caving into a mugger or other violent crook.

Instead Tony Robbins (Huh?) and Iowahawk play along with the Liberals and go "Sure take all the money from every corporation and all the rich people," let's see how 100% tax rates work:

In short: We can't get there from here. Which figures given that our cut-to-the-bone government needs 10 billion a day.

Update: Here's Bill Whittle's take on the same analysis.

Of course an argument of "Don't eat your seed corn" doesn't really play with people who think food comes from the super market.

It's also... scary how the rate of debt creation has jumped by two orders of magnitude.

Sleep tight!

A grim pattern of Mob Justice

Man Beaten, In Critical Condition, Told “Now, that’s justice for Trayvon.”

So abandoning any legal recourse, ignoring due process, and summarily punishing a person for the actions of a 3rd party they have no relation to is Justice?

Is it me or does Mob Justice seem an awful lot like Social Justice?

via Glenn Reynolds

And it's a pattern with at least 3 incidents with the same "justice".

I repeat: No national coverage of this racial hate crime pattern in the media.

Apparently some victims are unworthy, and some hatred and violence is justified.

Is Obama going to say anything? Call at least one of the victims? Attempt to bring calm? Attempt a "Sister Souljah" moment (which could actually benefit him politically) and call out violent black racists?

That would require courage and initiative, and Dear Reader is against such things that interfere with his monarch-like reign (I speak of modern European-monarchies where the monarch has considerable wealth, clout, and power but a dearth of responsibilities).

Monday, April 23, 2012

Quote of the day... Why Communism?

David Thompton looks at what makes Communism so appealing:

It seems to me one can’t explain the appeal of Marxism without addressing the psychological license that it offers, specifically for coercion and petty malice. It’s a golden ticket for a certain kind of sadist. Why Marxism? Start with rationalised envy and a vindictive desire for power over others, wrap it in a drag of altruism, and then take it from there.

A'yup. Nothing like a political cosmology that allows you to sate your material and dominating desires while being able to take the moral high ground. It even has its built in "No True Scotsman" excuse cycle. You see communism failed all those previous times because it wasn't real communism, but this time it'll work, if you stupid proles give us enough power to do so.

But again what really makes it scary as a political framework is how it allows for, and actively encourages, removing all limits on the State's coercive power.

Via the Overnight Thread on Ace of Spaces.

I got nothin....II

Here, go over to Weerd's where there's much reminiscing of old video game consoles.

My big thing today was that woolrich had a free shipping sale. So yay more pants.


Sunday, April 22, 2012

Quote of the Day: EQD

On the followup commentary of the FiM Season 2 Finale here:

This is the semi-automatic version of Twilight's magic laser cannon. We get to see the Gatling version later, but it requires a Pinkie Pie to operate.

Okay, that made me laugh. Especially as the terminology is correct. Heck the sound effects people in the episode even added a racking noise when Pinkie Pie "chambered a round" as it were.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Range Report: Success

Well that choronograph was very easy to setup and get data from
All I had to do was unfold the device, place it in front of hte target and shoot through it

Interesting. My 255gr round nose flat tops work in my 1911 and at normal pressure loading still have 90% of the KE as a standard 45acp round.

Speaking of that, resizing those heavy bullets to 0.451 seemed to do the trick. At least the first 10 that I tested out all fired and passed the function test. Though I did only get velocities from two of them.

Clearly I should load the rest I have cast and cast some more.

Also those Rainier bullets worked quite well. Were a bit slower than the Winchester, but for plinking the price savings will be worth it. I made some more with the Rainer and will do more testing.


13,000mph is a respectable speed to say the least.

Followup on a hypersonic glider test.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Backwards World....

Old NFO has a chilling, but not exhastive (not by a long shot), list called: Upside Down Land.

As said in the Squirrel Report as of this posting: There's no sense of responsibility; in fact it's actively punished. Work hard, and work above the board, and you get higher taxes, don't work and you'll get all your bennies and can still work under the table.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Today's reloading adventure: Sampler pack.

Well got a resizing die (0.451), and I think that solved my oversized 255 grain round nose flat top issue. The die worked as advertised, sized them down and made 'em easy as pie to load up.

Also got a handy Wilson gauge which is far more convenient then my older "disassembled Kahr" gauge. If you handload a rimless cartridge they're very helpful.

And got a very neat instrument for reloading that I'll write more on later. I will say that it was on sale at Midway and that it's handy for physics calculations.

All this helps balance the other bit of mail I got today. In short: the State gets angry when it loses W2 documentation and blames you for the loss, but oddly enough only on the withholding.

Anyway, back to the light stuff. Behold:

From left to right:
1) 5 230gr cast lead test cartridges from casting lot #3 (no resizing)
2) 10 255gr cast lead test cartridges from casting lot #3 (resized to .451)
3) 15 230gr cast lead test cartridges from casting lot #3 (resized to .451)
4) 20 230gr jacketed lead test cartridges from Rainier (no resizing)

All used starting loads of Acura #5 and standard overall length, save for the 255 grain that I had to seat in deeper so they could chamber. Those are the cartridges that I'm really going to watch so see how they preform.

Just happened to work out that way with the round count. I did the 5 on Sunday and wanted to do a minumim of 10 of the heavy bullets (to keep 15 cast in reserve), and so on.

Thanks to the fella's at GBC for suggesting Rainer and the 0.451 resizer.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Word of the Day: Monopsony

Interesting, in an article by Stross about Amazon where he takes some swipes at libertarian thought he mentions a delightful word: Monopsony

A monopoly is where customers have only one seller.
A monopsony is where sellers have only one customer.

The defense industry is like that. Electric Boat can only sell their submarines to one entity: the US Government.

And what does Stross view on monopsonies?

Monopsonies suck for their suppliers because the suppliers are systematically starved of profits by the middle-men running the monopsony. Which can lead to suppliers going bust, and a reduction in the diversity and quality of goods available (via the monopsony) to consumers.

(It's kind of like inflation and deflation in economics. Inflation is bad; deflation, its opposite, is not good, it's simply differently bad. Similarly, both monopolies and monopsonies are bad.)

And the peculiar evil genius of Amazon is that Amazon seems to be trying to simultaneously establish a wholesale monopsony and a retail monopoly in the ebook sector.

Emphasis in original. And my does monopsony not adequatly describe the ills that face defense procurment?

Hmmm, a combination of supplier and customer monopolies eh?

So a system with a dominant middle man that all customers have to partonize, and all suppliers have to sell too.

I wonder what Stross' opinion is of Single-Payer healthcare?

That would be a monopsony/monoploly that is backed by the force of law. Where is is illegal for suppliers or customers to go anywhere else.

Given Stross' Rule 34 has Scotland's Healthcare system surviving (and being one of the few points of light) in a post-indepencende, post-deflationary crash, economic basket case, country... one does wonder.

Though I've looked at the the mental blind spots in Rule 34 before.

And while he does not think State mandation is required for a monopoly to exist, he should realize that state mandation would make a monopoly more powerful, more difficult to remove, and exacerbate the very problems monopolies, and monopsonies, engender.

So put Stross's views on healthcare on the back burner. First Stross, tell us what you really think about libertarians:

I'm not going to lecture you about Jeff Bezos either, although I do want to note that he came out of a hedge fund and he's ostensibly a libertarian; these aspects of his background make me uneasy, because in my experience they tend to be found in conjunction with a social-darwinist ideology that has no time for social justice, compassion, or charity. (When you hear a libertarian talking about "disruption" and "innovation" what they usually mean is "opportunities to make a quick buck, however damaging the long-term side effects may be". Watch for the self-serving cant and the shout-outs to abstractions framed in terms of market ideology.)

So he freely uses the slur "social darwinist" and that very possibility someone could oppose social justice makes him uneasy.

Whle also seeing Social Justice on the same moral plane as Compassion and Charity (is that government enforced charity may'hap?) one wonders what his healthcare views are even more.

Also the irony of him deriding self-serving cant and free market ideology in an article where Stross proposes a free-market solution that would obviously benifit him and his publishers? Delicious.

As for his views on Healthcare, well wonder no more. Stross is against Single-Payer. But the details get a bit strange from there. You see... he's still a big fan of socialized medicine.

Short version for foreigners: the Conservatives are unhappy to be presiding over a socialist healthcare system that works, so they've decided to break it by turning it into a single payer insurance system.

We'll ignore the whole idea that the NHS "works" and that he thinks the Conservatives are reforming healthcare purely out of spite and put a pin in the idea of breaking a socialist healthcare system by turning it single payer.

FIrst let's look at Scotland's system which he's mighty approving of.

Healthcare in Scotland is mainly provided by Scotland's public health service, NHS Scotland, that provides healthcare to all permanent residents that is free at the point of need and paid for from general taxation. Health is a matter that is devolved, and considerable differences are now developing between the public healthcare systems in the different countries of the United Kingdom.[1] Though the public system dominates healthcare provision, private health care and a wide variety of alternative and complementary treatments are available for those willing to pay.

Emphasis added. So... Stross is for a system where one can get most of their medical services paid for by the State, but has the option to pay out of pocket if they want more. But he'll also take care to highlight and mock "measures [that] would facilitate the transition from tax financed healthcare to the mixed financing model of the United States. [{Stross's} emphasis] " saying:

They're not merely trying to turn the NHS into a single-payer insurance system, they're trying to turn it into a copy of the most notoriously bad private healthcare system in the world (as measured by the ratio of inputs to outcomes).

Emphasis his. Can someone tell me how you can have Single-Payer and mixed-public-private financing? That seems mutually exclusive.

So Stross is ardently against Single-Payer. Fine.

He sees Single-Payer as a threat to Socialized Healthcare... huh?

But he's also against mixed public-private financing... save he likes Soctland's system which is a mixed system. What?

Well... at least he's against Single-Payer which is explicitly defined as a monopsony.

However, "the United Kingdom's National Health Service, Australia's Medicare, Canada's Medicare, and Taiwan's National Health Insurance" are also defined as being Single-Payer...

I'm confused.

Eh, just go with Stross being consistent enough to not like monopsony health-care systems. I guess he likes public-private mixes as long as there State pays the lion's share of services.

Would it be rude to point out the self-service nature of wanting a system where those with wealth are still free to buy whatever medical care they want? Or since Stross is also for the state paying "whatever-care" for the masses that gives him a pass?

And apparently, there's a difference between Socialized Healthcare and Single Payer healthcare, and proponents of either tend to hate each other. I guess it'd also be rude to point out how I'm reminded of the Sino-Soviet split and of Trotsky-v-Stalin.

And in a comment here are Stross' thoughs on libertarianism. With this as the summary:

TL:DR; don't trust ideologues who come bearing attractive theories that over-simplify human behaviour.

Which is a fair cop. Though Libertarian has a nice advantage over Leninsm (his contrasting example) as Libertarianism has a strong philosophical dislike of coercive force on the part of the State and Leninsm... doesn't.

His earlier point in said comment about "No true-Scotsman" syndrome being rampant is also spot on.

Some of the other commenters, however, are pretty creepy:

While I have run into Libertarian idealists, none of them have confronted the question of how a society which puts rights up on an altar could be gamed by those who do not have an ideal of responsibility. We're watching this happen in the US right now, (Bill of Rights without a Bill of Responsibilities) and it's quite ugly.

Now there's a man with some real hostility towards the idea of inaliable rights.
Becha he thinks the Heinleist idea of "Service equals Citizenship" is facist though.

And a "Bill of Responsibilities" would be... what? Paying taxes? Obeying laws? Conscription (maybe this guy is an MI fan)? Fealty to the State? Or does he mean social responsibilities? Like charity and compassion... and if you fail to be sufficiently compasionate? What then?

What does the State due to those volatile the Bill of Responsibilities? Hmmm.

At the very least, Stross sees the solution to Amazon's dominance lies not in "there oughta be a LAW" thinking. Back from the first link:

If the major publishers switch to selling ebooks without DRM, then they can enable customers to buy books from a variety of outlets and move away from the walled garden of the Kindle store. They see DRM as a defense against piracy, but piracy is a much less immediate threat than a gigantic multinational with revenue of $48 Billion in 2011 (more than the entire global publishing industry) that has expressed its intention to "disrupt" them, and whose chief executive said recently "even well-meaning gatekeepers slow innovation" (where "innovation" is code-speak for "opportunities for me to turn a profit").

Note that even someone who treats profit as a dirty word can see that State-enforced controls like DRM only serve to prop up "favored companies".

And consider, he is advocating a way for the major publishers "to sell their wares as widely as possible" in order to increase their profits.

Perhaps Stross could explain when profit is bad and when it is good.
I suppose it has to do with how "disruptive" it is and how much Compassion and Social Justice is being used.

Hmmm commenters talking about social responsibilities and Stross bemoaning too much disruptive technology and a lack of charity and compasion. My how... conservative.

On another note, I've enjoyed much of Stross' work. And I've purchased it all via Amazon.

Oh and to twist the knife one last time: Clearly, Stross does not actually think Amazon would reach 100% market share; it would only control enough of the market to have an effective monopoly/monosopy. Due to the low barriers to entry (and lack of the State mandating Amazon) anyone could setup a webpage and sell ebooks.

Granted, in such a hypothetical situation Amazon would have such a domination of the market that it would be able to dictate terms and set market standards. One could sell e-books without working with Amazon but it would be at the fringes of the market. Amazon's size would also put the small players at a disadvantage due to the higher visibility and volume Amazon works with.

Thus Stross is not just against 100% monosopies such as Single Payer, but against 95% monosopies such as what he fears Amazon could become.

Huh... What was that about Scotland's Socialized Medical system. The one Stross likes so much?

Though the public system dominates healthcare provision, private health care and a wide variety of alternative and complementary treatments are available for those willing to pay.

Ahhh yes. Lovely.

Via Glenn Reynolds

Monday, April 16, 2012

Get off my Lawn! Or the Grid: then and Now.

In WW2 here is what the Germans thought of the US power grid system, in their own words on a document on attacking the US, specifically Section VII "Reconnaissance and military targets on the West Atlantic Coast and in the USA":

Regarding the condition of power plants, it is concluded that:
1) In the USA the completion of power plants since 1933 has been strongly promoted by the government.
2) Each power plant is connected to the other by an extensive relay system.
3) The loss of 4 or 5 of the larger power plants [to a bombing campaign] will have little to no effect on armaments production since the energy used for civilian goods production exceeds the potential for meaningful cutbacks if necessary.

Page 34, Target: America by James P. Duffy

Can you imagine the world, the country that existed back then? Where points 1 and 3 would hold for the US?

Also shows the day when Democrats with an eye to corporatist despotism actually liked building real infrastructure.

To show where the US had gone here's Professional Engineer, R. L. Hails:

This article is an epiphany to me. I am concluding forty years of engineering, primarily energy infrastructure, $ 2.5 Bn in nukes (24), fossil fuel power plants (48) and decades assessing advanced technologies (what is coming, the technical barriers, costs, etc.). These educational practices are alien to me in my ancient education. Engineering and hard sciences (which means truth) demands rigorous disciplined thinking. There is the right answer to the home work, and wrong answers.

Today, in climate change, nuclear safety, fracking, the current technologies controversies, I continually read many articles which can be summarized as, “Cesium 131 will kill everybody in Japan because I hate GE.” I find it irrational. So I have developed a hobby, of searching for the author’s bio, on the web. I induce that 90% of the articles on technology are authored by graduates in journalism or political science, often in the teaching fields. I can not remember one article on energy authored by an experienced engineer.

I conclude that erudite Americans form their political views based on falsehoods. It explains President Obama’s energy policies. And it explains my great fear: our grid may collapse. All of your computers rely on machinery built by your grandfathers. Our engineering colleges quit teaching course work, vital to power plant engineering, decades ago. Their students could not find work. The professors are now dead. The NRC just issued the first construction permit in 36 years. This means that everyone, from the junior draftsman, through the Chief Engineer, to the CEOs, and regulators, have never done one. Engineering is a professional practice. Why is it so difficult to accept? If Tiger Woods had not held a golf club in 36 years, he would not perform at a championship level. Yet we assume our power plants, very complex systems, are eternally sound. Is this rational?

Critical thinking and sustainability, in life sustaining technologies (pumping drinking water, flushing your toilets, and heating your home) must be reconsidered by “educated” Americans.
Emphasis added.
As an Engineer, I weep. With the increasing advent of copying "round robins", the decay of American STEM students, the buying of old tests, using smartphones to cheat on exams, and the dearth of experimental coursework and research, I sometimes get the feeling of the last one off the boat.

But I recall that that can also be confirmation bias and my own ego at work. The bit about the media reporting does fall right into the Gell-Mann Amnesia effect

Via Kevin at Smallest Minority.

Electricity, water, food, and eat all come by magic, until they don't. For many it seems that a separation from the realizing how physical wants are sated has led them to feel they can smash the whole system and make one that's "better", without causing any real damage (or hurting anyone important).

Also from Smallest Minority, here's Bill Whittle:

Alone, small, sparse and having limited mental horizons are no way to go through life.

But as Reynolds says: they'll make us beggars because beggars are easier to please.

Again to make myself feel "special", myself and my friends were some of the last people to not get cell phones. I only got mine when I moved out to Indy after college. That's not to say the magic elf boxes in themselves are bad. Really, people being glued to them is more symptomatic of a greater illness, not the malady itself.

Also Whittle comes up with one of the best explanations of Moon-Denialism, and that its growing is another worrying symptom. And the jealous inferiority complex of our grandfathers is as much in place with our Grid as it is with the Moon.

But Whittle does offer some hope: the internet is the greatest tool the aspiring autodidact could ever hope for. Shame the whole idea has been so thoroughly crushed, but don't let that stop you.

However, you know what's worse? Compared to Kevin's essay here, the above video is a balmy bit of optimism.

Rule 5: Never Catch a Dropped Gun

Even Cracked's in on this one:

If anything, the Hollywood-concocted myth about guns firing on impact inspires us to be even dumber with guns. If you drop a gun, your first instinct will be to try to catch it before it hits the ground, because movies taught you that gun + ground = death. In real life, however, grasping for falling objects is an inherently imprecise act, and you run the risk of accidentally catching the trigger while you fumble around like an idiot trying to catch it. Which is why experts agree: It's much safer to let a gun fall than to try and catch it.

Even has a link to Box of Truth.

Though for an article about how dangerous Hollywood's gun myths are as its thesis, there's no mention of the other flagrant safety rule violations. Oh well.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Quote of the Day: Tam

In a comment on this post about people who are a bit to eager for everything to collapse so they can play their junior counter-revolutionary games:

And there's a difference between being prepared for a disaster and getting excited over the idea of one. One is wise and the other is sick.

No matter how much homeowner's insurance you have, no sane person wants a twister in the living room.

And for contrast is followed by this post on why anyone would need high cap magazines.

Or, better yet, give him the real reason: "Well, I need a magazine with thirty-three rounds in it because f&#$ you, Ed." Seriously, where does he get off thinking how many "bullets" are in my magazines is any business of his? Vobis non me dux, Ed; you ain't the boss of me.

That's why I own guns in the first place: To make sure nobody, from the mugger on the corner to the King of England to some washed-up political has-been from the Keystone State can come force me to do things against my will without me at least having a chance to shoot back.

Again the difference between wanting to cross the streams and realizing you may have to do it.

I was about to write "being prepared" but no one is really prepared if things really go downhill. Unless they've lived in the Balkans or some other lovely patch where everything did start to burn.

Rainy Saturday Project: Ham and Bullets.

I was planning to hit the range this afternoon and test a bunch of my second batch of cast bullets, but was not to be.

So instead I started the ham early. I'm in the habit of buying hams in the aftermath of holidays because you can get them on great sales.

The ham was done at 20min per pound (total of 3 hours cook time), at 325F. Had the ham make its own sauce as I cooked it. So have the bottom of the pan filled with 1/2 in of water adn all the juice from the bag, added some white pepper, black pepper, cumin, Lee & Perins sauce, dash of rosmary, and some Lousiana Hot Sauce.

Put a bit of aluminum foil over the ham in a loose "tent" to keep most of the moisture. Every half hour or so remove the ham and baste in its own juices.

An hour out remove the foil cover. Half hour out make the glaze and put on. Then done.
Also a trick I found to help the spiral ham retain it's shape (important for staying moist) is to use toothpicks and the big cooking "pins" to nail the ham into shape.

Also in the picture you can see my other project. Once the ham was up and running, I started up my lead melter. This time I stood it up on a wooden crate in the edge of the garage so I had ventilation, security from rain and I could work from standing up.

Last week I had cast my spare lead into 1 lb and 1/2 lb ingots. Found the 1/2 lb melted much faster (go figure SA/Vol). So when I was done I recast the leftover lead in the pot into 1/2 ingots.

This was the first time casting 255 grain roundnose flat top, and it went rather well. I cast 25 of those and a further 55 of the 230 grain. Quality control was done much better. Took a bit of time for the lead to get to the right temperature, and had interesting fun seeing what happened if you tried to cast with too hot of a lead, but was good learning and productive.

Also care should be taken to wash your hands between handling lead and making food.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Quote of the Day: Some Atheist Clown.

Meaning no disrespect, in addition to being a magician, raconteur, and strong pro-rights libertarian, Penn Jillette graduated Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Clown College in 1974.

I suppose you could call him an elitist, accredited, fancy-pants atheist clown. But that seems a bit verbose.

On Ace of Spade's Overnight Thread the "ending comment" was a quotation by Mr Jillette on compassion:

It's amazing to me how many people think that voting to have the government give poor people money is compassion. Helping poor and suffering people is compassion. Voting for our government to use guns to give money to help poor and suffering people is immoral self-righteous bullying laziness.

People need to be fed, medicated, educated, clothed, and sheltered, and if we're compassionate we'll help them, but you get no moral credit for forcing other people to do what you think is right. There is great joy in helping people, but no joy in doing it at gunpoint.

And those that find great joy in the coercive power of the state? Well they tend to run totalitarian in their impulses and at the very best are merely apologists for despots and other oppressive monsters.

But the idea that naked force is a pure good shows 2 things: 1) That since that coercion is necessary, those you are forcing cannot be convinced to voluntarily comply. and 2) That making them comply will be for their own good.

One can see the aristocratic underpinnings of such thoughts.

The article where Penn writes this passage can be found here.

One a related note is this report by Zombie on how academia grapples with how mush indoctrination is necessary and how overt it should be. Yes, really.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A Large and Moving Torb... Stay Puft 2012... What have I done?

Well, the great and pantsless Robb Allen has found my quote.

As Robb says:
For those of you who do get the reference, that joke has actually changed my mind about voting for (*shudder*) Romney. You see, I can’t fight the Moving Torb. The Torb has too many worshipers and comes from a dimension totally not grounded in our reality. But the StayPuft Marshmallow Man? While backed by an inter-dimensional force, the SPMM is clearly a construct of our reality, composed of sugar, corn syrup, water, gelatin that has been softened in hot water, dextrose, vanilla flavorings, and sometimes coloring, whipped to a spongy consistency, and his followers are less than enthusiastic about supporting him.

In short, I can beat the StayPuft Marshmallow man or at least slow him down. Not so much with the Large and Moving Torb.

My... so don't let anyone tell you that you can't make a difference. Uh... yay?

Seriously though, Robb's next post makes up for it all.

Though my mind is also filled with who is due to come to Maple Street and whether or not Doc Stockton's little basement project will work out.

Bonus points if you can guess those references.

Update: Oh gee... lookit that, a handy link between the Torb and the feelings of "just another match".

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Quote of the day... me? II

A comment of mine, garbled grammar included, at Weer'd's made Kevin's quote of the day at Smallest Minority.

Yeah.... I'm not enthused about this election. We've got the guy who would appoint Supreme Court Justice Eric Holder versus the gun grabbing, healthcare mandating, liberal... who would be able to get bipartisan votes for his Statist agenda.

CSGV: Why yes, your social "betters" should have more rights than you.

Yesterday I repeated Mad Saint Jack's find that Bill Cosby thinks he's entitled to carry a gun, while the rest of us proles would only use such powers for murder.

The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence agrees. You see celebrities should be allowed to carry because they're more likely to need to defend themselves.

Nice to see the anti's explicitly endorsing their aristocratic views. Remember, they don't think your life is worth as much as those of the rich, famous, or powerful. Which is why they like discrecionary issue.

Thirdpower says it succinctly:
So if you're a 'celebrity' (or rich or politically connected), they're A-OK w/ you having a gun or armed bodyguards. For the rest of the 'unwashed masses', they're SOL.

Gun control is discrimination at its core.

Next time you're talking with someone who is ranting about the 1 percent, fat cat bankers, the poor not getting healthcare, or unregulated money strangling free speech... see what their stance is on gun control.

If they're okay with the poor being disarmed then... chances are their bleeding heart for the rest of poverty's problems are either a cruel system of graft or a patronizing paternalism.

And then you have the regulation of Body Armor.

It's a purely defensive technology. The only reason the State would want to restrict armor is to make people easier to kill. You can be generous and say it's just to make criminals less likely to be wearing it, but that goes with the central pitfall of all arms control as it collectivizes punishment.

Via Tam who is close to going "It's a cookbook."

Monday, April 9, 2012

Special Laws For Special People

Bill Cosby doesn't want you proles out there carrying guns, saying that: “When you carry a gun, you mean to harm somebody, kill somebody.”

Of course, Cosby excuses himself. He thinks he should be able to carry guns.
How do I know this? Well he applied, and successfully got a NYC carry permit. A process that is very expensive, involved, and legally complicated, thus it is not done casually. Mr. Cosby had to have really, really, really wanted to be able to carry a gun.

Also, I'm sure Bill, likes the approval process itself. New York City only issues licences to "the right" people. Can't have the common rabble, those without political connections, and those that are just "the wrong sort" carrying guns, eh Bill?


Again, it's not about the guns, it's about the control.

Here, have something cute.

Excited Derpy.

Those of you that know what it is, good.... very good.
Those if you that don't... hehe it's a deep rabbit hole.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

More Adventures in Reloading

Well tried my handloads today, including jacketed ammo and handcasts.
For this batch I used the Lee Factory Crimp Die and cranked the crimp a bit further down.

And it worked quite well. For the 1911 had no malfs on either set of ammunition.

For my AR45, I'm continuing to have failure to feed issues, which I think are buffer spring related, but I hwas having the same issues with the factory ammo. That issue is where the bolt will not close fully on a round. This happened after 30 rounds with no malfunctioning. Which is the similar pattern.

I then cast up 111 bullets and had 102 pass inspection (mass, size, and shape). They're now curing with bullet lube and will be ready for loading tomorrow.

Oh yes, Mark's suggestion to talk the cavities worked quite well.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Day and Range

So after a leisurly breakfast of bacon and bagels. From what is arguably the best bagel place in the city. I did some organizing and had the carpets cleaned.

Very thorough, very detailed, very prompt, and efficient service. So if you live in the Indy area, I recommend Carpet Medix

After that I hit the range and tested my hand-cast lead bullets. Accuracy was very good. Had one failure to feed due to not enough crimp on the case mouth. The rest fed and fired fine.

I've still got half of my cast bullets to go and will try with a more aggressive crimp on my Lee Factory Crimp Die.

I also fired some jacketed brass and had no malfunctions. All the cartridges had a marked improvement in accuracy. Though that is partially due to the LaserLyte training target too.

But if I can get cast bullets to work reliably then that will save quite a bit per round.

Edit: Also after counting for the rounds I had shot off, I managed to increase my brass supply by 73 rounds of 45acp. So there's that too.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Sweet Sweet Tears of the Antis.

And as an added bonus it's Canadian Statists that are crying.

Good start Canada, now get to working on actually be able to use your guns for self defense.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

<+KJ> Thank God for old school Army videography

That'd be tonight's quote of the day, when he presented the following vid in GBC

And say hello to Ivy Mike.

I love that old style speaking cadence. Wonderful.

And scale.

As a meal that doesn't look half bad.

Maybe not half good, but this Russian RP-SPN Special Forces Food Ration looks a lot better than I thought it would.

From MicroBalrog a site that has a lot of neat historical and current Russian military stuff.

Via C-90 on GBC

More Reloading.

Well got my factory crimp die and Lee Auto Disk Upgrade.

If you use a fine powder, go for the Auto Disk Pro. It has an improved spout that leaks far less than the baseline model. Something you'll want.

I found the Factory Crimp Die was nice but did not do much with factory bullets. Where it's resizing (it comes after the bullet seating die and takes the place of that die's crimp) seems to be with cast lead bullets.

So loaded up half of my cast stock and will take it to the range when available. I already found one test feed problem where if the mouth of the case has a spur it can cause feed issues. Something to check.

No photos today. May try to get some more, but my still camera's pretty balky and my video camera exports horrid stills. Maybe something to get a replacement.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The Ratchet Effect in Action.

So our Constitutional Law Lecturer of a President has decreed a new metric of Constitutionality.

According to him, the Supreme Court should not strike down a law if it is sufficiently popular and was passed by a high enough margin. To do so would thwart the will of the people.

And what law was he talking about? Why Obamacare which passed by a mere 7 votes in the House, 21 in the Senate, both on pure party votes, and is still underwater in public polling with a majority of the nation thinking it will be repealed and at least a plurality thinking it's unconstitutional.

That, is what Obama thinks was "passed by strong majority of a democratically elected Congress" and would be "an unprecedented, extraordinary step" if overturned.

Pardon me for being a lay person, but I thought that popularity and number of votes wasn't a factor in the Constitutionality of a law?

It doesn't matter how the law is pushed across the finish line does it? Once it's over it's sacrosanct and the ratchet tightens one more kink.

It's not like there's been a steady erosion of separation of powers at work here. Standing on the shoulder of giants here.

Though we're starting to see blowback. From the GOP and judges: Court of Appeals Demands Obama's Lawyer Answer Whether Courts Have Power To Strike Down Federal Law Or Not.

Interesting times.

And to cheer you up, PJTV's Trifecta has the video of Obama's comments and some hilarious commentary on it.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Today's reloading adventure.

Welp casted some bullets today, then weighted and measured htem, now have the first lot lubed and curing overnight.

Was my first time using a lead melter. Some things I learned was that you need to make sure the molten lead is at the right temperature and your mold is properly cleaned and set.

Though once everything is balanced you can punch out bullets at a pretty good clip.

And here's where a quick digital scale comes in real handy so you can test each round.