Words of Advice:

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

"Foreign Relations Boil Down to Two Things: Talking With People or Killing Them." -- Unknown

“Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level
and then beat you with experience.” -- Mark Twain

"Colt .45s; putting bad guys underground since 1873." -- Unknown

"Stay Strapped or Get Clapped." -- probably not Mr. Rogers

"Let’s eat all of these people!” — Venom

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Your Sunday Morning Rotor Noise

Kaman K-MAX:



Yesterday, I was watching Loudermilk on FreeTV (formerly IMDb TV). I heard something that sounded like it could have been a heavily-loaded diesel locomotive or even a steam engine on a nearby rail line. But then the sound diverged from where the tracks are. I called up an ADS-B tracking site and found out that it was a Kaman K-MAX.

The trees are all leafed out and I couldn't see it, but I sure would have liked to.

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Some Expensive Old Heaters

A matched pair of engraved Remington Model 1858 revolvers, with ivory grips, that were given to Ulysses S. Grant were sold at auction.



The strikedown price was $4.4 million; throw in the 20% auctioneer's premium, that brings it to over $5 million.


A relative bargain was an engraved Colt 1851 Navy, supposedly once owned by Wild Bill Hickock, was knocked down for a paltry $525,000.

Caturday

The prison visit.

Friday, May 20, 2022

Guns Are the Symptom. Racism is the Disease

Let's dispense, right now, with any thought that this nation can do anything about assault-style weapons. There is not the political will for it on a national level. Even if it were tried, it'd never survive judicial review.[1]

Similarly, the complaining about the growth of the right to carry is pointless. Most of these asshats used rifles, not handguns. So let's dispense with that, as well. so, let's proceed to the main event of this post.

What the far-Right murderers are doing is trying to spark their "racial holy war." If you have a strong stomach (and, preferably, a VPN and a TOR/onion browser), try searching"rahowa". It will scare the shit out of anyone who is not eligible to be a card-carrying member of the Klan or a Bircher.

There is a market for racist hate in this country. There is a market for politicians who are trying to subvert the idea of a democratic nation. They want it so that only their people, mainly, white Christian men, can vote.[2] They have no problem with using terror to cow those who they ate.

You can't talk about the evils that generations of racism have perpetuated in this country, according to the GOP, for that makes white people feel bad.[3] But you can talk about how minorities are going to hurt white people.[4] You can scream about that until your face turns red.

The problem with this country is that hate is become mainstreamed. The TOFF used hate to prop up his base. His party has adopted naked racism as one of its platforms. Not for nothing was the radio show of a now-dead radio commenator known as "Radio Rwanda". His successor on cable TV has been loudly spouting racist "thories"[5]. The #3 Republican in the House of Representatives has glommed onto spouting that same racism. The Senate candidate in Ohio figured out that riding that demon is the key to winning his party's nomination. Others are doing the same.

White murderous racism largely gets a pass. When somebody acts on the lunacy being espoused by the pundits and politicians on the Right and gets to killing people, oh, how they express shock and dismay that the killers are saying the very same thing that they are. "They must be mentally ill," they proclaim.

As if. Those jerkoffs are spreading their racist poison far and wide and then they are just so surprised that their base acts on it? They're surprised about the Tiki-Torch March and the violence surrounding it, the Capitol Hill Insurrection, the massacres in Charleson, El Paso, Pittsburgh, and Buffalo?

The hell they are. You will not see a single one of them stop to think that maybe it would be better if they stopped serving their racist poison. No, they will keep on doing it. And some of their cretinous supporters will continue to take them at their word and they will do something to try and stop being replaced.

There will be more such shootings.

You can bet the farm on that.
_______________________________

[1] For instance, a law limiting white males under the age of thirty to only air rifles would not survive a court challenge. [2] Not all. [3] Critical race theory. [4] Replacement theory. [5] When he hasn't been shilling for Putler's War.

IVF Is Now Illegal in Oklahoma

Oklahoma legislators have passed a law banning abortion after conception, which critics say is the most restrictive such measure in the US.

The Republican-led bill would prohibit all abortions, except to save the life of the woman or if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest.

Some methods of IVF involve freezing fetilized eggs. Those methods clearly would be illegal in Oklahoma. One might argue that IVF in general, since the eggs is fertilized outside of the body, might be illegal. So if a woman wants to become pregnant in Oklahoma and has fertility issues, no baby for you.

But hey, that's what happens when the Cult of the Fetus doesn't bother to think about what it's doing. Or maybe they think that those women who now can't bear kids in Oklahoma, because of stte law, may line up to adopt the unwanted babies who will be born there.

They ought to set up a baby-drop-box in the statehouse.

Because It's Friday

SP 4449:



There's a little too much narration for my taste, but YMMV.

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

No, You Really Can't


Last year, almost all of the politically-motivated murders were by Right-wingers:



The report is here.

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Putler's Disastrous Foreign Policy Move

Historically neutral Switzerland is edging closer to NATO.

Switzerland's fabled neutral status is about to face its biggest test in decades, with the defence ministry tilting closer to Western military powers in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
...
On a trip to Washington this week, Defence Minister Viola Amherd said Switzerland should work more closely with the U.S.-led military alliance, but not join it, Swiss media reported
.

Think of it: The Swiss see Russia as posing more of a threat to their country than did the Soviet Union or, for that matter, either the Kaiser or the Nazis.

Corrosion as a Tactic of War

This Twitter thread:

is essentially an reprint of an article that has been run in the Sydney Morning Herald, and maybe elsewhere.

Hit them in the rear, hit their supply convoys. Sounds a little like an echo of the SE Asian War Games of about fifty to sixty years ago.

Squishing These Down, Here






Astroturf; Facebook Ed.

Facebook funded various organizations through its covert and wholly-owned lobbying organization to oppose legislation that Facebook doesn't want.

If you see anything by the group "American Edge" or anything by someone who is funded by that group, you are seeing a Mark Zuckerberg sock-puppet.

I guess they are zealous in protecting their right to run Russian disinformation.

This Baby Formula Has Been Brought to You by the Letters "M", "B" and "A".

There are three companies that make baby-food formula. Abbott, which shut down because of contamination issues, makes 40% of the formula sold in this country.

This is what has goen on from one industry to another. The money guys have, in thier unalloyed greed, "consolidated" industries so that fewer and fewer companies make any particular product.

We've seen this before, especially in the Great Plains, where the railroad companies and the grain elevator operators together reduced farmers to near-slavery. We've seen this before with Standard Oil.

Break up Big Baby Food!

Monday, May 16, 2022

Is the Kremlin Preparing the Russian People for the Announcement That the War is Going Badly?

First, watch this: There is a flavor of "Mother Russia is being stabbed in the back by NATO", but there is also a backhanded acknowledgement that the Ukrainians are becoming better armed and are far more motivated than the Russians.

Note also that they seem to have held hope that Rand Paul (who was not named) would be able to hold up American military aid to Ukraine, but they realize that hope is a forlorn one.

Between that, and the fact that Russian military bloggers have covered the slaughter of a part of a Russian motorized rifle brigade at the Siverskyi Donets River pontoon bridges may indicate that either a) you can't stop the signal forever; or b) the Kremlin is laying the ground for the end of the war on unfavorable terms.

The Ukrainians are making far better use of their artillery. I should have made a note of where I read the story, but the synopsis is this: Thanks, in no small measure, to Starlink, the Ukrainians have been able to widely disperse their artillery pieces while having all of the tubes within range of a target act as a single battery. In effect, they can bring mass artillery fire onto a target in a very short span of time. The Ukrainian guns "shoot and scoot", which limits the ability of the Russians to engage in counterbattery fire.

It would be very interesting if the Ukrainians were able to put counterbattery radar up to protect cities.

Another thing that is helping the Ukrainians as this goes on is that NATO nations are not just sending old Warsaw Pact weapons, they are increasingly sending state-of-the-art artillery to Ukraine. This is a win-win situation in that the Ukrainians are getting better gear and the NATO nations are getting to do real-world testing on their weapons.

Interesting...

Putler seems to be backing down from his threats against Sweden and Finland.

Vladimir Putin has appeared to climb down from Russia’s objections to Sweden and Finland joining NATO, saying Moscow had no issues with them entering the US-led military alliance they now aim to join in reaction to his invasion of Ukraine.

It could be because Putler has realized that Russia doesn't presently have the conventional combat power to threaten other neighbors.

Or, maybe, someone else has Putler's back?

In other war news..

Russian forces have likely run out of combat-ready reservists, forcing the Russian military command to amalgamate soldiers from many different elements, including private military companies and proxy militias, into ostensibly regular army units and naval infantry.

That article goes on to state that the Russians are stripping sailors from warships and sending them to the front, along with amalgamating paratroopers and mercenaries. Neither is a good sign for the Russians.

This Shooting is on the Usual Suspects

Namely, the Right and the GOP, which has been bleating the same racist shit that the Asswipe of Buffalo was spouting.

U.S. Representative Liz Cheney called on fellow Republicans to reject white supremacism, days after a teenage gunman motivated by the right-wing "great replacement" theory allegedly killed 10 people in a racist shooting in western New York state.

"The House GOP leadership has enabled white nationalism, white supremacy, and anti-semitism," Cheney, an outspoken critic of former President Donald Trump and his allies in the House of Representatives, wrote on Twitter.

"History has taught us that what begins with words ends in far worse. @GOP leaders must renounce and reject these views and those who hold them," she tweeted.

Republicans have been glomming onto "the great replacement" with both hands.

Born from far-right nationalism, the extremist ideology expounding the view that immigration will ultimately destroy white values and western civilization has found favor not only with media figures, such as the conservative Fox News host Tucker Carlson, but a host of elected politicians and others seeking office.

Those who have convinced themselves Democrats are operating an open-door immigration policy to “replace” Republican voters with people of color and keep themselves in power permanently include Congresswoman Elise Stefanik, chair of her party’s House conference, and JD Vance, the Donald Trump-approved Republican nominee to represent Ohio in the US Senate
.

Republicans are blowing steam-whistles to their racist base. They are steam-whistles because the racism is not coded, it is out front for all to see. Stefanik and her ilk might as well walk around wearing white sheets. It's one thing for a bunch of neo-nazis to yammer a racist theory. it is quite another for that to be adopted by a major political party and be broadcast approvingly on a cable news channel. Stefanik, Gingrich, Tuckyo Rose, the TOFF and the rest of that sordid crowd of authoritarian racists.

More than sixty people in this country; Blacks, Hispanics and Jews, have been killed by white supremacists who were espousing that racist line of claptrap. Their blood is, in part, on the hands of the politicians and the talking heads who have been normalizing white supremacy conspiracy theory.

And this, too.

Sunday, May 15, 2022

Your Sunday Morning Rotor Noise

A "Shithook" firefighter:

Saturday, May 14, 2022

Warm Up Old Sparky

A gunman opened fire with a rifle Saturday at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, in what authorities called a “hate crime and racially motived violent extremism,” killing 10 people and wounding three others before being taken in custody, law enforcement officials said.

I'm reasonbly sure that we'll all learn in days that the Asswipe was some lunatic white guy who was set on killing as many people as he could.

Try him. Convict him. And then fry his nazi ass.

Putler Warns a Neighbor

Russian President Vladimir Putin warned his Finnish counterpart Saturday relations between the two neighbors could be “negatively affected” if Finland follows through with plans to apply for NATO membership.

You know what really "negatively affected" relationships with Russia's neighbors? Invading a neighboring country with the rationalization that "they used to be part of Russia." That is a rationalization that applies to Finland, as well, and the Finns are fully aware of that.

The Russians seem to think they can still terrify their neighbors. But since, in the eyes of the rest of the world, the Russian Army has gone from being regarded as the second-best army in the world to the second-best army in Ukraine, the fear factor has been diminished.

YMMV; EV Ed.

If you get one of the new electric F-150s, and if you plan on towing things, figure you'll have to stop to charge that thing up every two hours, or less.

Given the shorter range on those trucks, you'd think that the auto companies would come up with a body design that is a tad bit aerodynamic than a fucking billboard.

But what the hell do I know.

You could mount a generator in the bed, but it seems the folks at Found On Road, Dead have thought of that.

Shorter Anti-Choice Crowd: "The Death of the Mother is Acceptable."

Terminating a pregnancy to save a mother’s life has long been accepted as a moral imperative by those on both sides of the abortion debate. For decades, jurisdictions that restricted the procedure granted wide leeway to doctors to make exceptions for medical necessity. But now, with the U.S. Supreme Court potentially moving to overturn Roe, the landmark ruling affirming the right to abortion nationwide, emboldened conservatives in some states are pushing to narrow and in some cases eliminate such exceptions, arguing that they create loopholes that are easily exploited. Doctors say such restrictions will complicate medical decisions for pregnant women, increasing the risk of death in a country that already has the highest rates of maternal mortality in the industrialized world.
...
“What we are calling for is a total ban, no exceptions,” Matt Sande, legislative director of Pro-Life Wisconsin, said in an interview. “We don’t think abortion is ever necessary to save the life of the mother.”

So, if your wife, sister or daughter dies during pregnancy, where, in the past, her life could have been saved, send the full bill for the funeral to Pro-Life Wisconson, ATTN Matt Sande. Maybe they'll chip in a few bucks to help defray the cost.

But don't bet on it.

About a week ago, I talked to a retired teacher, who had begun her career in the ealry 1970s. She said that there was a noticeable decrease in the amount of problem kids after abortion became legal. Her belief was that kids whose pregancies were not wanted knew that. While thier parents may have loved and cared for them, they knew that the basis of that love was a lie.

My prediction is that the pro-life crowd will largely oppose services for families who have unplanned/unwanted kids. Once the fetus becomes an air-breather, they will wash thier hands and walk away, because heavens to Betsy, helping people might result in having to pay taxes, and we simply cannot have any of that, can we.

Caturday

"I want out!"

Friday, May 13, 2022

More Interesting Stuff

Some interesting stuff: Shot-down Russian jet fighters have been found with GPS units taped to their instrument panels, apparently because the installed systems suck. Russian tank losses are not being replaced because the factories don't have parts, due to Western sanctions. And Russian soldiers are showing a distinct lack of interest in fighting.

Meanwhile, foreign banks are being advised that being caught helping Russia, including individuals subject to sanctions, evade those sanctions will have consequences.

Affluenza Has Its Limits

I mentioned this case earlier. But it seems that the defendant's lawyers really stomped on their cranks and, as a result...

A Hidden Hills socialite must stand trial on murder charges in the deaths of two boys, a judge decided Thursday after hearing testimony that Rebecca Grossman struck the pair in a crosswalk while going more than 70 mph and continued driving.

Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Shellie Samuels determined after a five-day preliminary hearing that there is sufficient evidence for Grossman to be tried on two counts of murder, two counts of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence and one count of hit-and-run driving resulting in death.

“The defendant was not rushing to get home; she was playing a high-speed game of chicken with Mr. [Scott] Erickson,” Samuels said in ordering Grossman to stand trial. “I believe the defendant went well beyond gross negligence.”
...
The judge castigated Grossman’s attorneys over their questioning of [the victims' mother]. “You asked the mother of the children I think 12 times did she see her children hit, when it was apparent they were there one second and gone the next
.”

I don't know how she's going to be able to beat this at trial; proving that she was street-racing in a residential zone should be a pretty easy lift. Especially if her co-racer testifies, which I'll bet he does.

My guess will be this will be pled out well before trial. accompanied by an eight-figure settlement to the parents.

Because It's Friday

Southern 4501