Words of Advice:

"Never Feel Sorry For Anyone Who Owns an Airplane."-- Tina Marie

"
If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

"
Flying the Airplane is More Important than Radioing Your Plight to a Person on the Ground
Who is Incapable of Understanding or Doing Anything About It.
" -- Unknown

"There seems to be almost no problem that Congress cannot, by diligent efforts and careful legislative drafting, make ten times worse." -- Me

"What the hell is an `Aluminum Falcon'?" -- Emperor Palpatine

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Stop Talking About Those Asswipes

Even the New York Times is slowly beginning to realize that the nearly obsessive press coverage of school shooters and their methods is a factor in why there are more and more school shootings.

About fucking time. They're certainly not listening to me. Because the amendment to the Bill of Rights that they operate under is sacred to them.

But talk about this with most reporters and I'll bet that they give you the "those who will trade freedom for security" line attributed to Ben Franklin while, in the next breath, telling you why you should give up your guns.

Two Overworked Words

"Hack" is one. A "hack" isn't a "useful tip" or "suggestion". It meant "to gain access illegally to a computer system". "Hack" also meant someone who was incompetent or unskilled at their job. In short, it was an insult. (It also meant a taxicab or a small carriage for hire.)

Coming up with a better way to fry an egg isn't a "hack".

Second one: "Disruptive technology". It seems that every new device or method these days is "disruptive". Including an as-yet untried robot to weed fields.

Hack writers who overuse the word "disruptive" should be shot with a disruptor.

Ambien Causes Racism?

That's Roseanne Barr's excuse of the day. Apparently, it didn't fly, as she then deleted her "ambien made me do it" tweets.

In a very predictable reaction, Commandante Bone Spurs made it all about him, after his Duty Liar said that Dolt-45 was concerning himself with things that mattered to the nation.

I've never associated morals and ethics with the entertainment industry. They'll tolerate a lot if the money is good. But as the networks become more corporatized (ABC is a Disney subsidiary), they may be getting more risk-adverse or at least less tolerant of racist tomfoolery.

Roseanne, among veering between apologizing and implying that she's the victim, here, said that she's not a racist, but an idiot. The two terms, however, are not mutually exclusive.

Still, it's got to sting for a network to shitcan its top-rated show.

Mini-Trump is Out

Missouri Governor Eric Greitens has quit after less than 18 months in office.

Greitens is one of those political snowflakes who believes that laws don't apply to him.

Notably, he quit merely hours after a judge ruled that his sock-puppet charity had to turn over documents to a legislative panel investigating Greitens. He was also facing charges for using his charity for political fundraising, which also may have sparked his desire to go spend more time with his family.

Greitens ripped pages out of the Trump playbook, screaming that it was all a witch hunt driven by the liberal media and George Soros. It didn't work. Republicans have a supermajority i the Missouri legislature and if La Affaire de Greitens was a partisan thing, it would have gained no traction.

But it turned out to be about corruption, believing that one is above the law, malfeasance and a bit of sexual misconduct to add flavor to the recipe of this particular scandal. Even the Republicans had their fill of this guy. And so, he's gone.

Update: Greitens said that he did nothing wrong. But he's resigning. For a guy who so proudly proclaims to have been a Navy SEAL, resigning sounds a bit cowardly.

Memorial Day

Last year's post.

I'm timing this post for an hour before sunrise in my town. An hour before sunup was an unofficial time to attack an enemy encampment or town, in the hopes of catching your enemies still abed.

Andy Rooney had the right of it: They didn't "give their lives". Few soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen "give" up their lives. Their lives are taken from them, whether by force of arms or, as was more common up until several decades ago, by disease and pestilence.

Memorial Day, or, as it was once known, Decoration Day, was a solemn day to remember those who fought and died for my country. It was not meant to be the unofficial start of the Summer Vacation and Grilling Season.

Every congressman and senator who voted to make it a 3-day weekend, and every congressman and senator since then who has not tried their utmost to restore Memorial Day to May 30th, should be damned.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Unhinged & Running for Office

Rep. Diane Black (R-Tenn.) said that pornography is partially to blame for gun violence in schools.
Black is one of the people who write our nation's laws, which should cause one to consider chugging vodka.

For it would seem that Rep. Black may think that she's high on Jesus, it's more likely meth.

A Slight Pushback to the Police State

The Supreme Court is putting limits on the ability of police to search vehicles when they do not have a search warrant.

The court sided 8-1 Tuesday with a Virginia man who complained that police walked onto his driveway and pulled back a tarp covering his motorcycle, which turned out to be stolen. They acted without a warrant, relying on a line of Supreme Court cases generally allowing police to search a vehicle without a warrant.

The justices said the automobile exception does not apply when searching vehicles parked adjacent to a home.
It's nice to see that the 4th Amendment still has a few teeth left in it.

Starting Off Work This Week


Decent speakers or headphones are recommended.

Losing Moral Authority

Ireland voted decisively to repeal one of the world’s more restrictive abortion bans, sweeping aside generations of conservative patriarchy and dealing the latest in a series of stinging rebukes to the Roman Catholic Church.
Ireland was, until not very long ago, a theocracy in all but name. The scandal about the "Magdalene Laundries", where unwed women were effectively enslaved by the Catholic Church, began to break about 20 years ago, first with the publicity around mass graves on Church properties. The laundries were essentially prisons of a sort where rampant abuse of women and children took place. The Irish government denied being involved, but the ties between the state and the Church showed that denial to be a lie.

The Irish people came to realize that their black-cassocked overlords were little more than power-mad beasts. To the extent that the Roman Catholic Church has accepted any responsibility for what went on, it has done so rather grudgingly, as it has around the world for similar crimes.

The Church, in advance of the constitutional referendum, attempted to exercise its self-proclaimed moral authority. Two-thirds of the voters effectively told them to go fuck themselves.

No Sesame. All Dick.

The makers of “Sesame Street” are suing the promoter of a new Melissa McCarthy movie, saying it’s abusing the famed puppets’ sterling reputation to advertise the R-rated film. ... The lawsuit said the “Sesame Street” brand will be harmed by a just-released movie trailer featuring “explicit, profane, drug-using, misogynistic, violent, copulating and even ejaculating puppets” along with the tagline “NO SESAME. ALL STREET.”
I understand that if you have a trademark, you have to aggressively protect it against "dilution".

Having said that, it's probably going to be a stretch to award actual damages. It makes the Sesame Workshop look like a bunch of dicks. And they may lose, if the defendants successfully argue that their work is a parody.

Still, it's two corporations spending money on lawyers to fight one another. What's to hate about that?

Monday, May 28, 2018

This Isn't Memorial Day. At Least, It Should Not Be.

I know, this is one of my favorite dead horses to beat.

But it continues to gripe my gizzard that a day of solemnly remembering those serving our country whose lives were taken from them by war has been transformed into a shopping extravaganza, as well as a long weekend to mark the unofficial commencement of the summer vacation season.

The fucking chowderheads in Congress will never fix it. Because money talks.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

For Ten Years, Now-- Mass Shooting Ed.

Ten years ago, I proposed that everyone stop referring to the perpetrators of mass shootings by their names. I've reiterated that several times.

These assholes want to be famous. Whether they understand the difference between being famous and being infamous is probably not worth debating. Let's strip them of that.

I don't think that this would be much of a restriction on the right of a free press. They can and do cover sexual assaults without naming the victims. Why would it be so difficult for them to not name the perpetrators?

My bet would be that the reporters would recoil in horror and start yelling about: "How dare you suggest that we give up any of our First Amendment rights??!" Which does not pass the "so, what" test. They want me to give up some of my rights? Let's see how serious they are and see if they'll give up some of theirs.

Pin Guns

These are two of the guns that I used in yesterday's bowling pin match: A Model 27 and a Model 65.


The M65 was used in the "pocket revolver" class; revolvers with 3" or shorter barrels. For pocket guns and .22s, the pins are on sawhorses. It's really unusual to topple a pin on a sawhorse and have it not fall off, but it does happen. There are three pins for pocket guns, five for .22s (and four for single-action revolvers).

You don't need anything fancy to shoot a pin match. Standard production guns work just fine. It helps to have an extra magazine or a speedloader in case you don't clear the table with what's in the gun.

In the video that is embedded in the post, you may have noticed that there is a length of 2x4 standing on the table. That's used to ensure that everyone begins from a safe angle and direction. The board is free-standing; half of the time, it falls over.

Two of the shooters used Ruger Blackhawks that were chambered for .30 Carbine in the single-action portion. Those were impressively loud. .38s sounded like popguns in comparison.

Next time around in the match, I'll probably shoot magnums in the M27. Recoil isn't significant in that gun and the loads'll whack the pins a little harder.

Your Sunday Morning Jet Noise

A DC-9:

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Bowling Pins

This is a shooter at the 9mm portion of a local match:


Timer starts at the beep. The time is the time of the last shot to clear them from the table, max of 20 seconds. 9mm and .38 pins are a foot from the back of the table; .44 and .45 pins are three feet from the back of the table.

Bowling pins are funny targets. If you don't hit them dead-center, they'll fall over and roll around on the table. Sometimes one will roll in front of another. If you're looking at it end on from the top end, good luck shooting it clear.

And the pins gain weight from absorbing bullets, which makes them even more unpredictable.

If you've not shot a match, you should try it.

Not Fitting the Narrative, School Schooting Ed.

I haven't seen much from the Parkland Children's Brigade about the recent school shooting in Santa Fe, Texas. My guess is because that shooting doesn't fit their narrative.

The gun-banners want a ban on "assault rifles" and large capacity magazines. Their claims, all along, have been that such bans would make them safer.

The Asswipe of Santa Fe has shown that their claims are false. Asswipe used a pump-action shotgun and a revolver; guns of similar function were available before the Spanish American War.

The only thing that the banners can cry about, here, is requiring people who have kids in their home to lock up their guns. But there's no rel debate about that point. So this shooting does nothing for them.

Worse for them, it exposes everything that they are crying about as being false premises. It's not that the Asswipe of Santa Fe had an evil-black-rife and 40-round clips, it's that he had a gun at all in a place where guns are not permitted. Prom his perspective, it was a target-rich environment, a happy hunting time.

so they're keeping quiet. Make no mistake, if Michael Bloomberg and his Children's Brigade get what they want and ban all semiautos, they'll be back for the revolvers and the shotguns. The Santa Fe shooting came too early for them, that's all. Which is why they're keeping quiet.

Caturday

The self-mobile cat toy:


When that bug came back out from under the cabinet, Chip was waiting for it.

Friday, May 25, 2018

GDPR-- I Am so Out of It.

I've seen a lot of references to "the GDPR" recently. For the life of me, I couldn't see why the Euros, and everyone else, all of a sudden became so fascinated with the German Democratic People's Republic. They winked out of existence 28 years ago.

But no, it's got something to do with protection of personal data, it came into full force and effect today. It's why the Euros have recently been flogging the shit out of Google and Zuckerberg.[1]

So anyway: I don't collect your personal data. There are only two or three commenters on this blog who I have ever met. I know a few of your real names, but only because we've exchanged emails. You may have mentioned where you live, but I don't remember most of that. I think somebody lives in Phoenix, AZ, which is akin to living in Hell, but without lava raining down from the sky.

Because I'm not keeping your data, I don't know what it is that I can protect. Or why I should care. If the Euros don't like that, well, screw them.[2] The EU being the EU, there's probably a Minister for Data Protection and a thousand minions in Brussels doing fuck-all what.
___________________________
[1] They richly deserve being flogged. Especially Google, which dropped the word "don't" from their original motto.
[2] Next time around, the bloody Huns can have the continent.

Because Reasons; Bangity Ed.

I treated myself to a nice gun: A S&W Model 27:


Sure, I'd like a Registered Magnum. But this gun was about a tenth or less the price of one of those. If you've ever seen an older Model 27 in good condition, the blue is deep and rich. The bluing is nice on this one, but yeah, it's not as they did it in the old days. It's not a "pinned & recessed" gun, so for collectors, it's not as desirable. Not that I care.

15 yard target, two-handed:


Model 27s are heirloom-quality guns. You can still buy new ones, but they all have a hole on the left side that lets the gun's soul leak out.

"Life Begins at Conception"-- If You're a Child Molester

[Asswipe], of Holts Summit in central Missouri, is currently serving a 90-year prison sentence on three counts of first-degree child molestation in Callaway County. Crider was 32 at the time he sexually abused his victim in December 2014. She was thirteen.

Or was she?

[Asswipe], who is represented by a public defender, appealed his conviction on the grounds that the Callaway County prosecutors failed to prove his victim was younger than fourteen at the time he was accused of abusing her. In his appeal, [Asswipe] argues that, under Missouri law, her age should be calculated from her date of conception, not her date of birth
The Court had none of that nonsense:
Age has always been calculated from the date of birth, which, unlike the precise date of conception, can be determined with certainty.
Crider v. State of MO, WD80370.

Enjoy the rest of your life in stir, [Asswipe].

Because It's Friday

Idiots at work:


Trains have the right-of-way, people.

Not a "Mass Shooting"

Probably because an armed citizen capped the shooter.

Much of America is no longer a safe space for homicidal loons looking to stack bodies. Which may be one reason why those ghouls look for places that guarantee that they'll have time to do their deadly work.

"How Is That Fair," Indeed.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Because Warmongers Gotta Monger

Trump has canceled the summit with North Korea.
The president made his announcement in a remarkably personal, at times mournful-sounding letter to Mr. Kim, North Korea’s leader, in which he cited the North’s “tremendous anger and open hostility” in recent public statements as the specific reason for canceling the meeting.
No, Donnie, me boy, this isn't on Kim. This is all on John Bolton and Mike Pence. Both of those "worthies" have made comments in recent days alluding to the Libyan cessation of its nuclear program as the model for North Korea.

What the North Koreans are aware of and, no doubt, John Bolton, as well, is that things didn't turn out so well for the leader of Libya afterwards. Referring to the "Libyan model" was a direct provocation, which Bolton knew it would be.

Whether or not Pence did, as well, I'm not so sure of. The lad doesn't seem to be terribly smart.

But Bolton did. Bolton was one of those well-connected draft-dodgers who secured a spot in the National Guard, rather than go to Vietnam. He makes no bones about being a draft-dodger, just like other noted chickenhawks, such as Dick Cheney. Bolton wasn't willing to put his precious pink bod on the line for this country, but he sure seems to be awfully eager to fill up Arlington National Cemetery.

As much as I'd grit my teeth, if Trump did secure peace on the Korean Peninsula, he'd damn well deserve the Nobel Peace Prize.

And maybe, if Trump realizes that Bolton's mouth is going to cost him that, Trump will throw Bolton back to his permanent job of running his mouth on Fox News.

NFL Goes”Full Retard”

Saying that the players can “protest in the privacy of their locker rooms” is nonsensical.

Kowtowing to Trump is cowardice.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

One Terrific Headline

"FBI: Man urinates on seat during Frontier flight to Charleston, lands in jail."
He's going to pay a very high Stupidity Tax.

(It's been a long time since I've read "The Newsless Courier."

"We Doan Need No Ejjucatin"; South Carolina Ed.

Publix grocery in Charleston censored 'Summa Cum Laude' on graduation cake.

To be fair, the number of people who work at the local Publix who have graduated with honors from anywhere is probably a very small number.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Not Just the Russians

Other foreign governments were trying to influence the Trump campaign by offering help. No surprise that the World's Most Despicable Merc, Erik Prince, had his slimy fingerprints all over it. He might also need to grovel to Trump for a pardon, as the people involved are falling into the effective range for the legal guns of the Special Counsel.

This may explain why his sister, who is in medal contention for Worst. Cabinet. Secretary. Of. All. Time. got her job.

I'm trying to conjure up a name of who would be so horrible and disgusting that Trump wouldn't have dealt with him (or her), but I'm not coming up with anything. Clearly, the law that foreign governments aren't permitted to meddle in American electoral politics meand zippy-point-shit to Trump.

Saying that "the Trumps sold their souls to foreign princes for some bags of silver" sounds almost Shakespearean.

Starting Off Work This Week

The cello solo by Sheku Kanneh-Mason at some damn wedding gig last Saturday.


Only a billion or so people around the world were watching this. No pressure, right?

(No doubt that the happy couple will be living on royal ground.)

"Out of Pocket"

When I was younger, the phrase "out of pocket" meant that a person had covered someone else's (or an entity's) expenses out of their own funds, and expected to be reimbursed for it.

In the last several years, it seems to have come to mean that a person was out of the area; away from home or away from work. Apparently, that usage is a century old, if not older,

So, in the current vernacular, I was out of pocket for a bit. Like a little under 3,000 road miles worth.

Kentucky seems to be afflicted with knuckleheads who set their cruise control at the speed limit and then camp out in the left lane. A long time ago, some similar fool did that in Ohio and was cited by the Staties for obstructing traffic and traveling in the left lane on the Ohio Turnpike.[1] He was found guilty and suffered enough butthurt to take it up on appeal. His defense was that he was at the speed limit and nobody should have been passing him. The judges pointed out that the law was that the left lane was a passing lane, he wasn't passing anyone and by obstructing other vehicles, he was acting as a traffic vigilante.[2]

A good indication of how diligent the state cops are on speed enforcement is how fast the trucks are going. Illinois and Indiana seem to be polar opposites.

If you're traveling on I-70 between St. Louis and Columbus, OH, consider taking I-64 and I-71. It adds about 50 miles to the trip, but it's far more pleasant of a drive; especially I-64 and I-71 south once it splits off from I-75.
_____________________________
[1] He might have also been charged with "creating an unsafe condition" because people were passing him on the right, but I don't recall.
[2] Or "traffic nazi".

Sunday, May 20, 2018

I Am So Going to See This Movie

The Happytime Murders

(WARNING! This trailer is NSFW or small kids.)

Devin Nunes Should be Charged With Treason and Hung

Devin Nunes outed a confidential foreign intelligence source in order to score political points.

I would snark that Jonathan Pollard's cell might be available, but the rules are different for Republicans. When they out American intelligence officers and assets, nothing happens to them. Because Republicans make no bones about being more loyal to their party than they are to their nation.

Missed a Sad Anniversary

The Carrollton, KY bus crash happened just over 30 years ago on May 14, 1988. A lot of the passengers died in the post-crash fire, as the bus was gasoline-powered. Kentucky requires that school buses be diesels, but school districts that can may run the risk to this day.

(I was reminded of this sad anniversary recently while driving through Kentucky.)

If You're Late For Work, You Can Blame Donald Trump

Because of a change in federal energy regulations, some scientists say your trusty, older plug-in clock may be losing or gaining a few ticks over time.

Electric clocks keep time based on the usually stable and precise pulses of the electric current that powers them. In the U.S., that’s 60 hertz (cycles per second). In the past, regulators required power companies to immediately correct the rate if it slipped off the mark. But that precision is expensive to maintain, so last year, the correction part was quietly eliminated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
Can this group of corrupt goons be any more clear that they serve corporations and not the American people?

While your phone and computer might be correct, if your company uses a time clock, then it might be off a bit.

Your Sunday Morning Big Prop Noise

A C-46:


As far as I know, the C-46 was the largest piston-engined airplane built and the largest twin until the DC-9.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Caturday

Chip: "You want to pet me!"

Friday, May 18, 2018

Because It's Friday

Bosnian and Serbian steam:


Wednesday, May 16, 2018

If You Want Me, I'ma Gonna Be Hiding in the Basement.

Read this.

It'll happen. Because people are stupid.

Governmental Theft

Several Connecticut environment groups and companies are taking the state to federal court over the legislature’s decision to remove money from state energy funds in the two-year budget passed in October.

The Connecticut Fund for the Environment and 11 other plaintiffs filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court Tuesday in order to stop the $165 million sweep.

Using the funding for other than its intended purpose is a breach of the contracts clause of the United States Constitution, the plaintiffs argue. Much of the money is raised through a small surcharge on electric bills; because the money is now allocated for different purposes, the plaintiffs say this qualifies as an illegal tax on tax-exempt organizations — such as nonprofits that are ratepayers.
...
The budget also removed $28 million from the Green Bank, $127 million from the Energy Efficiency Fund, and $20 million from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.
States have a penchant for doing this shit. Raiding the "highway trust fund" is a favorite; the roads and bridges then fall apart and the very same politicians, who did the raiding, decry the condition of their state's infrastructure.

This is akin to stealing the kid's college savings because the MasterCard is overdue. It's evil. The legislators of Connecticut should be ashamed of themselves, but hell, they're politicans. Being scum-sucking weasels is all in a day's work.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Kim Jong Un is Selling Trump a Used Car

North Korea says it’s hosting a nuclear dismantling party this month. On Saturday, state media reported that North Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs plans to dismantle the country’s nuclear testing site in a ceremony between May 23 and 25. The event will take place days before President Donald Trump meets North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore on June 12 for the pair’s much-hyped summit, where they will discuss a potential deal and items such as sanctions and North Korea’s nuclear program.
For one thing, the testing site has been used often enough and for overly powerful weapons that it's no longer usable.

Just like Trump to fall for glitz and not look under the hood.

What the Fuck, Trump?

Why in the name of G-d has Trump asked a batshit-crazy evangelical to offer the blessing at the opening of the relocated embassy in Israel? He couldn't find an American rabbi to do it?

What is going on, here, is this: Trump is kowtowing to the Christian Taliban. The evangelicals are trying to bring on the end of days, which the nutjob Christians have been wishing for since about 35 CE.

Mike Pence may be pushing it, as well. He may be hoping to be "raptured" before he gets indicted. For don't forget that Pence was Manafort's guy.

Trump's Worried About Jobs in China?

In a surprising overture to China, President Donald Trump says he would help a Chinese telecommunications company get “back into business,” saying too many jobs in China are at stake after the U.S. government cut off access to its American suppliers.
Trump cares about Chinese jobs while effectively giving zip-point-shit fucks about working Americans.

So who is getting paid off? Did ZTE hire Michael Cohen?

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Still Waiting for the Sixteen Congressional Investigations to Begin

The deaths of four special forces soldiers in a small corner of Niger known as Tongo Tongo was the largest loss of American military life in Africa since the "Black Hawk Down" killings in Somalia 25 years ago.

Now an investigation into their killing last October, has found "individual, organisational and institutional failures and deficiencies" contributed to their deaths.
If this had happened a year earlier, Devin Nunez and his merry pack of trolls would have commenced investigation afer investigation before the last soldier was in the earth. You would have been hearing about Niger nearly nonstop from the Right Wing Noise Machine: What were the soldiers doing there, why were there no reinforcements available and so on. They'd have found a relative or to to spout conspiracy theories.

But because this happened under Trump, all you're hearing from the trolls who were bleating about Benghazi is: Crickets.

Giving the Green Light to Educational Fraudsters (plus a litle tab clearance)

Members of a special team at the Education Department that had been investigating widespread abuses by for-profit colleges have been marginalized, reassigned or instructed to focus on other matters, according to current and former employees.

The unwinding of the team has effectively killed investigations into possibly fraudulent activities at several large for-profit colleges where top hires of Betsy DeVos, the education secretary, had previously worked.
This should not come as a surprise to anyone, since Trump himself had to cough up $25 million to settle claims against his bullshit for-profit "college".

DeVos's putting people who were running those fraud-centers in charge of things would be like putingBernie Madoff in charge of the SEC.

The Trump Administration is a hive of fraud, scum and villainy. The Department of Education, inder its eminently unqualified Secretary, are about as blatant as it gets.
------------------------
Shocker (not): NYPD's still pretty fucking racist.
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Sack up and apologize, you fuckers. For once in your miserable lives, show a little class.

Your Sunday Morning Rotor Noise

The BUFF, helo version:

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Trump and NORK

I hope that the upcoming negotiations with the North Koreans go well, I really do.

But I have two niggling thoughts.

First, I fear that the NORKs are going to play Trump like a ukulele. They'll probably stroke Trump's ego, for Trump's track record is that if he is suitably fluffed, he'll agree to anything.

Second, you can bet your bottom dollar that if any Democratic president had agreed to one-on-one talks, the Warmonger Wing of the GOP, as led by John Bolton and Lindsey Graham, would have lost their collective shit.

Caturday

Mom wants to go to bed, but Sammy was there, first!

Friday, May 11, 2018

No Surprise, That

Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn opposes tariffs on Canadian newsprint that have driven up printing costs and forced cutbacks at newspapers around the nation.

“Newspapers are beleaguered already, and I don’t think we need to make that any harder than it already is,” Cornyn said during an appearance at the National Rifle Association convention Friday in Dallas.
Trump's tariff on newsprint is aimed neither at the Canadian paper industry or the American paper industry. It is aimed squarely at newspapers.

Trump, like any half-pint authoritarian wannabee, hates a free press. That's why he's toying with yanking the press credentials of any publication that publishes articles that don't laud the Enlightened Reign of Commandante Bone-Spurs. So this tariff should not shock anyone.

This Shit Never Gets Old For Me


If it doesn't load, go here.

Supposedly, that's the first flight of a booster stage that is designed for ten flights.

I remember Project Mercury. This shit never gets old.

Because It's Friday

Highway running (down the median strip):

Trump White House: Keeping It Classy

A White House official mocked Sen. John McCain’s brain cancer diagnosis at an internal meeting on Thursday, a day after the Arizona Republican announced his opposition to President Trump’s nominee for CIA director, Gina Haspel.

Special assistant Kelly Sadler made the derisive comments during a closed-door White House meeting of about two-dozen communications staffers on Thursday morning.

“It doesn’t matter, he’s dying anyway,” Sadler said, according to a source familiar with the remarks at the meeting.
Yep, a class act all the way.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

That's What Happens When You Hire a Media Whore, Plus Tab Clearing.

President* Donald Trump is growing increasingly irritated with lawyer Rudy Giuliani’s frequently off-message media blitz, in which he has muddied the waters on hush money paid to porn actress Stormy Daniels and made claims that could complicate the president’s standing in the special counsel’s Russia probe.
I don't know of Rudy handling a criminal case since he became mayor about 25 years ago. One would be hard-pressed to hire Rudy to defend a parking case.
-------------------------------
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has resigned following allegations of assault by four women.

The New Yorker magazine published a report quoting the women, two of them ex-girlfriends, who accused Mr Schneiderman, 63, of hitting them.
Scneiderman said it was consensual contact. But he's stepping down anyway. There's going to be quite a bit of schadenfreude about the this, considering that Schneiderman was going after Harvey Weinstein for using his power to abuse women.
-------------------------------
The First Lady's office apparently plagiarized a child safety booklet from the Obama Administration. They had to retitle the booklet to remove her authorship credit.

Still, I have to wonder about the optics of Mrs. Trump promoting an initiative to train kinds to be kind and not be bullies when one considers that she's married to the Chief Pussy-Grabber and a man whose pretty much trademarked bullying as a method of operation in all phases of his life. Nobody has ever accused Trump of being a kind man.

Monday, May 7, 2018

Babbling Rudy

So Giuliani goes on news show and dismisses what he had said earlier as "rumors": Does that mean that he's just spreading bullshit?

I don't understand the strategy being used, but I suspect that he and Trump are just throwing random shit against a wall to see what sticks and what doesn't.

Saturday, May 5, 2018

Caturday Music

Caturday

We have an impostor today!

Friday, May 4, 2018

Two Spaces After a Period, People

The old rules still hold.

Don't Worry, Rudy. Those Tire Marks Will Buff Out.

Trump just threw Giuliani under the bus.

You might recall that yesterday, Trump agreed with everything Rudy said on the Hannity Propaganda Hour. But now that Trump has had time to assess the reaction to what Rudy said, under the bus he goes.

At this point, one might wonder if even those who have been suffering from Trump Delusion Syndrome have come out of their comas.

Also: Heh. Heh. Heh.

Because It's Friday

Steam locomotive "knobology":

Ah, the Sweet Stench of Corruption; Bureau of Prisons Ed.

The Bureau of Prisons is rescinding a program that required inmates to purchase books from an approved vendor at a 30% markup. That was apparently over list price. The BoP also forbade families from sending greeting cards or any card that had kids drawing or writing with crayons.

The latter policy just reeks of institutional sadism.

The book markup program sounds like somebody is getting something for it. Inmates, who could buy used books through Amazon, now had to buy at full retail plus 30%, which probably ended up doubling or tripling the cost of a book. It'd be an interesting investigatory project to find out who contracted with this unnamed vendor for gouging the prisoners.

For it's a possibility that somebody's palm was getting greased in some manner.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Incomprehensible Legal Strategy

President* Donald Trump has denied any money from his campaign was used to buy an adult film actor's silence over an affair he says never happened.

He admitted in a tweet lawyer Michael Cohen had paid off Stormy Daniels during the campaign and was reimbursed.
There was a time when I worked in a law firm that had a few clients who were rather wealthy. I never ever saw a lawyer advancing funds to a client out of his or her own pocket.

Trump, at the time, was running for office. Cohen paid off Stormy to keep her from talking about an affair that Trump denies took place. It's hard to see how that payment can be construed as anything other than a loan to the Trump campaign. Trump, by paying Cohen back, if he used his own money, made a donation to his own campaign. Which he is free to do, but I'm reasonably certain that both the loan and the repayment were transactions that were required to be reported.

Also, it seems that the Stormy payment came from a California bank. Which might open another can of worms for The Donald.

So I don't see how this admission that "yeah, I paid Mikey for that" does anything for Trump. Giuliani thinks so, but there are lawyers in practice who were not born when Giuliani was last actively working as a lawyer.

Update: The press corps is roasting Huckabee-Sanders for lying.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Magic Bullets

ARX bullets are the new hotness, promising supersonic fluids, or something like that.

Color me "unimpressed".

I'll wait until there are a bunch of real-world examples of the bullet functioning, and that can include hunting. We know what hollow-points do. As much as this bullet seems to blow big holes, it's pretty much been proven that a round has to be at over 2,000 fps on target to result in permanent tissue damage from lateral stretching. (Got a free half-hour?)

A non-expanding fast-moving bullet... how's that supposed to slow down unless it hits something hard? Non-expanding bullets fired from service-caliber handguns tend to go through people. Even wadcutters from a .38 will do that. The benefit of a properly-chosen hollowpoint round is that it expends its energy inside your opponent, so that is far less likely to come out the other side and hurt other people.

The various new magic bullets tend to be lubricated, in part, with snake oil. My personal belief is that this is no place to be on the cutting edge. Stick with that which has been proven to work.

On another note: Bravo, Hornady.

Tab Clearing on Trump and His Party of Stupid

The Federal government borrowed nearly $500 billion in the first quarter of this year.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he’s unconcerned about the bond market’s ability to absorb rising government debt after his department said it borrowed a record amount for the first quarter.

“It’s a very large, robust market -- it’s the most liquid market in the world, and there is a lot of supply,” he said in a Bloomberg TV interview on Monday. “But I think the market can easily handle it.”
Riight. Do you remember all of the Republicans who were carping when the Obama Administration was borrowing a shitload of money to try and ameliorate the Great Recession? But now that the economy is doing well, the Republicans are engaging in deficit spending on an unheard-of scale.

The reason is plain to see: They care more about cutting taxes for the wealthy than anything else.
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There's lots of speculation in the air as to whether or not Trump is going to pull out of the Iran deal.

Of course he will. He said he would. Just like he pulled out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Paris Accords. And just like his sea-to-shining-sea border wall, which he keeps pushing for, even though everyone else knows it's not going to happen.

What'll likely happen is that some cosmetic changes to the agreement will be made, so he can claim a win
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If you go around the news, you'll see that Netanyahu carping about Iran trying to secretly develop a nuclear weapon.

Maybe they are, maybe they aren't. I wouldn't trust Netanyahu to sell me a used hammer.

But beyond that, if there is a country on this planet who should not be complaining about another nation's secret nuclear weapons program, it is Israel.
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I wonder of the prospect of a peace deal for the two Koreas has Nikki Haley, John Bolton and Miss Lindsey drinking heavily. They have to be despondent over the prospect of combatus interruptus.

Because, you know, warmongers gotta warmonger.

Heh. Heh. Heh.

"[Ted Cruz] might as well be an animatron from The Hall of You're Never Gonna Be President." --Robert Smigel, aka Triumph the Insult Comic Dog