Monday, July 21, 2014

Gun Control In Action, The Chicago Way

How Gun Control Works In Chicago – 22 Shot In 12 Hours:

22 shot in 12 hours, 60 shot over the 4th weekend. Chicago has one of the strictest gun laws in the nation -- and it works exactly like one would expect! The criminals have a lot of guns and use them with impunity and those that follow the law and do not have guns bleed and die.

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Sunday, July 20, 2014

45 Years Ago, The Pinnacle and The Premonition

Forty five years ago I was a 12 year old with only one thing on my mind. THE MOON! America was the nation that took on the USSR, and even though no US politician had really had the guts to say it yet, we knew in our hearts it was indeed an "Evil Empire" and eventually it would be "them or us".

Politics were FAR from my mind while in giddy excitement and a good deal of anxiety I listened to the crackly voices from Eagle as it descended to the lunar surface. We were still a Christian Nation -- there were a lot of prayers going up from the USA for a successful mission that evening. I'd felt and heard nothing but joy the previous Christmas while Jim Lovell and the crew of Apollo 8 had read from Genesis 1 while circling the moon. We knew our place in the universe -- America was great, but God was greater.

At age 12, Chappaquiddick didn't register ... nor does it STILL register on Google spellcheck!  America was at it's pinnacle, but just like I'm sure Egypt never recognized it when they built the pyramids, Greece when they built the Parthenon, nor Rome when Hadrian reconstructed the Pantheon in like 125 BC, the seeds of our destruction were well planted.

Our nation was at once so just, so capable, so dedicated and so focused that we could go to the moon and back multiple times in that era. We were also so corrupt, venal and disgusting that we could allow a sitting US Senator to effectively murder a young woman on his staff and not report it until the next morning, YET, still continue in what was once  "The Greatest Deliberative Body" for nearly 40 years beyond his crime!

"Justice is mine saith the Lord". People ask "Why are we so divided today"? Look at the Moon and remember what we once were. In those couple days, July 18-20 1969 we see the greatness of America and it's demise, clearly and plainly laid out for any that want to see.

But mostly, we as a nation do NOT want to see, so we are "divided". Unless a people is willing to accept a higher power than themselves and their nation -- even a nation that builds the Pyramids, the Parthenon, the Pantheon, or goes to the Moon, it is doomed.

History shows that nations can be great without Christ being in that position -- although Western Civilization and especially the USA did reach the absolute pinnacle of what was possible for human kind -- in technology, power both economic and military, and more importantly vastly superior opportunity, justice and living standards for even the poorest citizens.

Nations require some version of "we hold these truths to be SELF EVIDENT". Human leaders are mortal and often corrupt. Even the good ones die, and the bad ones MUST be replaced and identified as FAILED quickly and surely, or the rot expands and destroys all that was once great.

I'm so thankful to have been alive to experience the landing in '69, and to have been too young to even care about the premonition. To have been alive to see and feel what was and is possible for a great nation with purpose, meaning and FAITH! How sad to see how far we have fallen. The moon? We can't even put a man in orbit 45 years later.

"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom" -- and losing that fear is the end.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Pond Elation

19 days since "Pond Depression". The rain generally shut off, the weather improved and the Water Feature is at like "85%" ... needs to be integrated better with the yard, path around the house needs to be finished off ... oh, it will be endless.

BUT, it sounds really nice, the water has cleared up, lots of plants have gone in around it (Thanks Marla!) and a few in it. There are low voltage lights around it (and in it).

Probably take the day off tomorrow and get the boat out on the river. As they used to say on the old "A-Team" show, "I love it when a plan comes together"!

Lots of sweat, lots of head scratching, a bit of cursing -- but IT IS ALIVE!

The Bear, The Cub and The Weasel

Funny-Because-It’s-True: Dan Bongino Zings Obama’s Absurd Nickname ‘The Bear’ with the Perfect Tweet:

BO thinks he needs a signature animal to go with his signature namesake stench. He has personally chosen "The Bear". Say what?

Some folks like to hang the "Bear" moniker on me -- school mascot Bear and large, but I'm not nearly aggressive or fearsome enough. Thus "Moose" ... need to shop at special "Moose Store" not for puny humans.Large "antlers" (ears stick out) ... generally docile, unobtrusive, exceptionally good looking -- certainly "Moose" is the obvious choice!

"Bear" for BO??? Well, maybe "Cub", but even that seems really wrong. Cubs are nice, cuddly, cute and have the potential to grow into something fearsome -- BO has none of that. BO has a gigantic ego completely outsized for his "accomplishments" (TWO Bios before age 50? Certifiable narcissism. He is a super sneak and a liar and has that long "whiny slinky look". A weasel is always going to blame someone else and never stand up and be counted. I rest my case!

No doubt in my mind "Weasel" is DEFINITELY the right animal for BO!

It is hard to even imagine how much derision any R president today would get if they tried to identify themselves with an animal!

Not to say it isn't fun sometimes  TR "Teddy" Roosevelt -- the R in name only that was the first major "progressive" was famously the foundation for the "Teddy Bear".

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United 232, Back When We Were the Home of the Brave

United 232 and the Miracle in a Cornfield | RealClearPolitics:

 Nowadays, commercial airliners crash on clear days with everything operating flawlessly because the pilots are unable to execute a straight in approach without instruments.

We have come a long way baby ... well worth the read.

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Friday, July 18, 2014

"Take Those S.O.B.s Out!" (Republicans) ... BO Approves this Message

Jimmy Hoffa Threatens GOP At Obama Event: "Let's Take These Son Of Bitches Out" | RealClearPolitics:

Oh the wonderfully civil rhetoric of class war and unions busting heads! Our very civil chief nasty gets up next and is "proud" of the speaker for wanting to "take the GOP out". How nice.

Never, never, never give up the 2nd amendment and arms! Nothing like those being "taken out" to start putting a few thousand high speed rounds in target to reduce the confident smiles!

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Leno, Passion, Cars

Passion and love drive Jay Leno to fill a 130-car garage - LA Times:

Good little read. I love to drive stuff -- a bit wider class of  "stuff" than Jay maybe.

If I had a similar setup it would have cars, trucks, motorcycles, tractors, heavy equipment like Cats and Payloaders, Bobcats, Jeeps, planes, boats ... and I'm sure I could pick out some more.

The Harley vs Honda whets the appetite, it is great to be able to ride both and savor the differences in engineering, style, "feel" ... I'd love to have a CanAm and an adventure bike as well -- plus maybe a trike just to see what they are like. Four or five side by sides ... a 4-place Razer with big HP, a CanAm for comparison, one with tracks ...

I do miss the sleds ... a mountain sled, a touring sled, a high speed ditch banger ...

I grew up with an IH - H ... to me, the essence of red tractors. Gotta have one of them. John Deere 4020, it was THE cool tractor right around High School ... oh, the IH 806 with a cab. Certainly one of the current big IH quadratracks, I would love to spend some time in one of those.

Why? Well, that is a really good question that has no answer at all -- like "why my pond / stream"? I happen to like messing around with it and seeing it come together. Passion? Insanity?

I'm sure there are people that are pretty much the "Wasting away in Margaritaville" speed on a permanent basis. I certainly know that feeling from time to time as well, but at least significant parts of the species have "passions" -- not necessarily "reasonable passions" (is that an oxymoron?). Evolution tells us we have only for drives ... the supposed "four F's" ... Feeding, Fighting, Fleeing and uh, "reproduction".  So which of those is the passion for cars, driving, architecture, music, art, technology, etc?

Oh, I know that the human materialist hard cores have mapped damn near anything to "dominance hierarchies" and thus breeding advantage. It is going to be harder to prove than even "Global Warming" that we are NOT just a bundle of "selfish genes" and nothing else ...

I still like to dream about my own version of the Leno stable -- as BO says, "sue me".

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TP "The Party" (Democrat) Lower Class Nation and Strategy

Why Democrats Need to Take Sides in America's Class War:

This rather long column lays out TP "gains" and strategy. The following chart from the article shows the huge "progress" of BO to date ... since '08 we have gone from a 53/25 middle/lower class identity to a 44/40 split! We are on the verge of realizing a core TP vision, America as a self identified lower class nation! :

The destruction of the "middle class", "bourgeois", "American Family", etc has been the agenda of left world politics since Marx, and solidly entrenched in TP since at least Wilson. Giant gains in increasing the dependency of Americans were made under FDR, but "the plan" was screwed up by WWII ... the war energized the nation and largely returned the Americans sense of "can do, self reliance, individual responsibility, etc".

Vietnam, the Cold War, Watergate, oil shocks, Stagflation and Jimmuh Carter had us on the ropes again in the late '70s, but before Jimmuh could close the deal, Reagan brought back the old virtues and it looked like MAYBE, America might actually figure out the "progressive" trap after all -- ah, the joy of Reagan and OPTIMISM!

But now it is the left that is highly optimistic -- less people IDing as "upper", far less as "middle", and MANY more as "lower"! The ultimate goal of TP! Everyone a dependent! Everyone focused on having the  government tear some little shred of a decaying nation away from someone else! Class warfare and dependency -- the mothers milk of TP!

So the rather long article calls out the needed strategy to double down on ways to force business to pay more -- which naturally moves more off shore and increases dependence. Another WIN!

Ever increasing taxation on the upper incomes to reduce their ranks further, help increase dependency of those to whom the money is transferred, AND make it less desirable to work toward a high income! A trifecta if winning TP strategy -- punish success, reward failure, reduce a set of voters you have trouble with (the successful), increase a set if voters that always vote for you (the dependent)!

Naturally TP writers are not yet totally direct in stating this, but one doesn't have to look very hard in this column to see the excitement of a "progressive" wolf that sees the US as largely bleating plaintively for his able wolf "assistance".

Expect a lot more celebration from TP.

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Thursday, July 17, 2014

Murder of Middle Class

Protecting the American Dream: The murder of the middle class | Fox News:

Written in a very populist style, the column and I imagine the book pulls together a lot of things covered in the blog as well as some new stuff. Too busy to check some of it out today, but he asserts that China passes us as the #1 consumer economy this year, and Canada passes us as the #1 middle class this year as well.

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Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Even The Left (WAPO) Admits BO is Lying

Obama’s claim that the GOP has ‘blocked every serious idea’ - The Washington Post:

Sure it is obvious, but the lies occasionally get a little outlandish for even the WAPO!

If his lips are a flapping you can be sure that the truth is taking a beating.

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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Tyranny Insurance

L’√Čtat, C’est Moi | The Weekly Standard:

I'm sure that many find me alarmist on the issue of the extreme loss of rights that has already happened to Americans. A few points:
  1. Seat belts, car seats for kids. wearing a helmet on a bicycle or fire insurance are all things that most do to try to cover risk of things that we nope will not happen at all. 
  2. There is also a human tendency to work rather hard at denying risk or even known eventual outcomes like death. Set belts and car seats were made laws for basically that reason -- some people just DO NOT want to use them, as they DO NOT want to be reminded of the risk! 
  3. We have a hard time picking up slow incremental change, especially when we are being soaked in a media environment intent on us NOT picking up changes. Many will feel a "pang" when say voter ID is defeated even though they have to pull out their ID more and more frequently just to live, or say an old guy loses a basketball team over something he said on what he assumed was a private conversation that was taped -- BUT, the very fact that these things are happening makes the majority of people LESS likely to react (see 1).  
This is why I think this review, although long,  is very worth reading. I may even skip this particular book as too arcane and focused on a single mechanism of tyranny (administrative law), although I'm very aware of the general phenomenon given books like "Liberal Fascism" and "The Forgotten Man", "The Road to Serfdom", etc. BUT WE NEED TO UNDERSTAND WHAT IS HAPPENING TO US!!!!

Here is how the column concludes ... I heartily agree!
But there is something even more fundamental about “necessity” and social “complexity.” The administrative state is a poor way to handle the complexity that has justified its exist-ence all along. The administrative state assumes that it has reached answers to questions that ultimately might not have scientific conclusions. Federal agencies, thus, “have difficulty keeping up to date with science,” because their particularized controls for particularized problems are inflexible and cannot adapt to technological change.  
Administrative law depends on epistemological arrogance, assuming that there is one right answer to a given problem. But our entire society (like all free-market societies) presupposes that there exists a diversity of opinions, objectives, and needs. It is precisely in an “increasingly complex” society that there is no one-size-fits-all answer. 
If the tendency of modernized society is toward freedom or at least social fragmentation, then continual direction by the federal government may actually be inconsistent with modernity.
Maybe humility—and constitutional government—are better after all.

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Paying the Vermin for "Softer and Gentler Treatment"

Isn’t It Rich? -

Wow, taking on Chelsea Clinton and even Bill and Hilly for being too rich! A NYTs columnist no less. This hardly seems safe if Maureen wants to stay a member of The Party (Democrat) in good standing!

I wonder what Maureen's net worth is? Since she is a long time successful columnist and has written a couple of books that have sold at least enough so it is "a couple" rather than one, I'm guessing that she is "comfortable" ... say $3-5 Million or so if she has been sensible at all. Definitely "top 5%er".

It is always mysterious to me how someone decides how much it is "right" for someone else to earn? I tend to see money like health, or good friends, or wisdom -- something that is at least based on God given blessings in ability, circumstance, etc. Can often be radically improved by work, habits, choices and of course the ever present "luck" ... or maybe again, blessings depending on your world view. It is almost always the same folks that claim that you "can't judge" on abortion, gay marriage, anything anti-Christian, etc that have an absolute 100% moral certainty about how much someone else ought to make. A topic I'll try to better understand another day.

What is one to make of this gem:
Chozick estimated that the lucrative family speechmaking business has generated more than $100 million for the former president and first lady, whose fees range from $200,000 to $700,000 per appearance. Bill alone earned $17 million last year doing what he likes to do best — talking. 
Based on history, how sure is Maureen that what Bill likes to do best is talking? But be that as it may, she is a writer -- I assume she enjoys writing, I certainly do ... and talking as well for that matter. Does she feel that her lifestyle is "undeserved" for "just writing"?
“It is troubling when corporate donors give to political charities with more or less obvious expectation softer and gentler treatment will ensue in the future. It is also troubling when some of the payers are public or nonprofit entities themselves such as colleges and universities, converting taxpayer funds and tax-exempt donations into signals that could end up in positive treatment when these institutions are themselves seeking access and favors, even if it is only a good word put in by one of the Clintons to a federal agency providing funding or to a regulator who might be taking a critical look at university tuitions and endowment payouts.
What part of "progressive" has Maureen missed? As the government progressively gets larger and ever more intrusive, the hope of those intruded on that they can pay for "softer and gentler treatment " gets more and more fervent and desperate. This is EXACTLY why we once had a Constitution and LIMITED government, so that law abiding people and business did not have to try to curry favor in hopes of better treatment. 

Maureen apparently gets that, but is just surprised there are people in government that will take advantage of the situation to their own benefit? She is a columnist and has no better grasp on the human propensity to use conditions to our advantage that that? Naive really doesn't cover it.  ALL human institutions need to have limits on power -- and ESPECIALLY the government, because it has the greatest chance of becoming an oppressor. Vermin like the Clintons are a sure sign of how deep the rot has become here -- they are like seeing rats around your grainery.

 Mareen may find that her life takes a very bad turn here.  Being a columnist with the NYTs and risking losing your status as a TPM (The Party Member) in GOOD STANDING is risky business. I will be actually surprised if I am NOT writing a "I told you so" in less than a year.
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Sunday, July 13, 2014

US Wage Stagnation, Not Enough Government

The main reason the U.S. economy isn't doing better - CBS News:

In my years at IBM I observed that most all of our problems were caused by a lack of Vice Presidents -- tongue firmly in cheek. Except for Gerstner taking over in '93, most "solutions" at IBM involved minting a bunch more VPs or other high level management positions. Most of history's progress has been accomplished by large committees of black women (just ask Oprah), corporate middle management, or of course, Government. Just ask the right folks, they know it to be true!

CBS News, noted economists, business folks and document creators (W Bush fake National Guard documents) that they are,  is convinced that the problem with US wage growth is:
  1. Not enough minimum wage
  2. Not enough government 
  3. Not enough progressive taxation. 
Certainly since the late '70s we have been horribly short on all of those things.

I'm thinking their crack research division might be able to avail themselves of a Google search, which would quickly show them that in constant 2013 dollars our minimum wage is historically high. Shockingly, the last time it was this high was in the 1970's ... I'm sure there is no correlation that the economy sucked then as well!

I'm not going to bother to go find the charts that show that the top 10% of US income earners are paying record levels of income tax and the percentage spent by the US Federal Government are at all time highs comparable with the 1930's and WWII. Turns out I'm actually correct, but since CBS News doesn't bother to look anything up, why should I?

So why does CBS News think these things are solutions? For the same reasons IBM is always a few short of a load of VPs and 1700's Doctors always felt a little more blood letting would do the trick -- that is what they ALWAYS think! The "solution" is 100% independent of any facts whatsoever.

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Chimps Unequal, Conservatives to Blame!

Why some chimps are smarter than others | Fox News:

One of my overarching theories of why civilizations fail is that "The in crowd", "The class officers", "The guy that gets the girls and the girls the guy wants to get",  take over the asylum.

When the world is recognized to be a dangerous place with famine, war, disease, death and myriad other items beyond human control, people realize that some portion of "leadership" has to be actually "common get it done sense/smarts", and it can't all be just "looks good, reads from the teleprompter well, says what we want to hear".

The people that understand history (boring), actual hard science (not "whose chimp is smarter" -- hard, often arcane), actual success / failure of various technical and social nostrums (eg. warming, government healthcare, economics, etc ... often painful to "the popular", because it often does not  fit their "preferred model") have a horrible tendency to work themselves out of a job.

They are as a group a bit hard to follow, often not as attractive or smooth talking, sometimes intimidating to the pretty folk, frustrating -- "why can't they just get with the view that EVERYONE KNOWS is true!" ... so when they get things working quite well, the more attractive folks step in to work on what they see has the REALLY important stuff -- color of the drapes, everyone "feeling good", "fairness" and the all important "cool factor".

The prettier, smoother talking, more artistic and more social have a natural tendency to be the "media", political leadership, entertainment, arts and the top of the "in crowd". High School is the pinnacle of an environment where this group flourishes -- "social merit" is the only coin of the realm. Everyone has the same locker so to speak and the maturity level of the mass is "minimal", so natural human tendency reigns supreme. It is much similar to a Democratic convention.

Back to the linked article. To those with a minimal practical human brain that could survive for a week in the wilderness or a couple of hours in a seedy bar -- or for that matter even an above average chimp, there is no reason to do such an "experiment" at all. The answer is obvious and known, and what is important is that such knowledge is KNOWN AND INNATE. It is what our founders called "Natural Law". At a basic level, even the "In crowd" knows it -- they just don't like it much, and if given the chance they will make sure that every one plays by their rules rather than the Natural Law.

"Behaviorism" was one such grand experiment -- that told parents it was bad to cuddle babies for example. Note that this disaster held sway for 85 years in the West ... "Global Warming" is far from the first "scientific" disaster to be foisted on the human community by those more adept in the politics of science and academia.
People don't usually talk about animal intelligence, but rather animal learning or cognition. American psychologists John Watson and B.F. Skinner developed the notion of behaviorism in the early 20th century, which said that scientists should study only the behavior of animals, not their mental processes. This was the dominant approach until about 1985.
So our founders developed the Constitution + created a Republic rather than a Democracy (the Electoral College and having Senators appointed by the State ... we already screwed up the Senate part and are hard at work destroying the electoral college.). Let's face it, nobody wants guys like Winston Churchill in charge unless you absolutely have to have them. "Natural Law smart folks" -- the kind that understand that "The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom" ... from history long ago figured out that man desperately needed religion, aristocracy, the "ancient regime",  to counteract the tyranny of the masses and ultimately the tyrants. The "in crowd" is just always intent to make sure the masses forget it!

Guys like Hitler, Stalin and Mao are examples of sort of the "Bad Girls" kind of manipulative leader that are ruthless about the rise to power, convert or kill any rivals for the peoples affections, and then make absolutely certain that everyone either loves them or is dead.

So as we continue our US slide to the abyss of tyranny, you can at least be aware of the mechanisms that drive the decline of successful civilizations.

God, Gold, Guns Gardening ... and perhaps a good Bourbon (not everything good starts with G) ... certainly we need to do all we can to warn and even reverse the decline if at all possible, but in general, the best that is likely attainable for those of with the "unpopular beliefs" is to make our seats to observe the fire as comfortable as possible.

As the title says -- when it all falls in, it will be our fault no matter what we do!

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Tear Down This Wall!

In an update of Reagan's prophetic 1987 speech at the Brandenburg Gate, we have our current caricature of an American, BO! Only he thinks the US is the "Evil Empire".