Jul 31, 2009


The beer summit was a national embarrassment. As male bonding it was Barney Frank meets Larry Craig.

To answer a doofus-duhh question asked by a million talking teevee heads: Biden was there because the official White House Keeper of the Image wet the bed at the vision of two part-blacks ganging up on one white guy.

Next time, Mr. President, try the Tune-In.

Jul 30, 2009

A current outrage

You're invited to visit The Smallest Minority for the latest on third parties trying to shut down commerce and charitable giving in anything they happen to dislike. The villain this time is Pay Pal which pulled the plug on a Soldiers' Angels project. Seems that a firearm was mentioned.

Gore Report

The warming of the globe seems to be on hold this summer.

Two mornings running.--->

Jul 29, 2009

Shame on Us

Hardly anyone in this corner of Blogopolis recognized the 55th anniversary of this hemisphere's greatest triumph of socialism, and so I leap into the breech.

Fidel, being somewhat under the weather despite Cuba's universal health care system (which features a public option*), did not speak. Instead, brother Raul sang the praises of socialist solidarity and the terrestrial heaven it spawns.

NPR covered the celebration extensively and reported on El Supremo Raul thusly:

His biggest announcement was a prediction that an aqueduct renovation to provide water every day to Santiago should be completed by 2010. Residents there complain that the water is often out for days and even weeks on end.

And so we understand that socialism is that form of government which, after only 55 years in power, can promise that there will be running water in its second largest city** in only two more years.

Perhaps someone on better terms with Current Administration than I am might mention some of this to Our Leader.


*And damned little else, if anything.

**Santiago gets 43.6 inches of rainfall a year, leading to a sort of WTF? moment. I mean, if the unemployed, approximately everyone, were assigned to catch rain in coconut shells and dump the surplus in a reservoir...

Jul 28, 2009

Talking to Judge Bean

Ambulance Driver comments about a girl battered beyond recognition by her boy friend:

As a bonus he also gives us: "Remember, the recidivism rate for freshly ventilated girlfriend beaters is zero."

A professor of rhetoric would credit A.D. with admirable idea density in the post and a follow-up. A professor of morals would add that they can be good ideas. A screen printer would visualize a tee shirt with a message on the back, another on the front.

Jul 25, 2009

Prickley libertarians

The AP's Adam Geller joined some of our comrades at the Porcupine Freedom Festival. His report is a pleasant read if you appreciate nice, breezy newspaper style. I leave it to the reader to judge whether Geller assumed a tone of amused condescension, particularly toward the shooters and shooting contests.

Mushroom Food

It was a measure of the nation's keen sensitivities on matters of race that the fallout from a disorderly conduct charge in Massachusetts — and the remarks of America's first black president about it — had mushroomed....

The mushroom results from a President who shot his mouth off on a pending legal situation without having a clue as to what he was talking about.

Jul 23, 2009

Economics Stimulates Me

And so does the aesthetic of burning wood.

This is the 2009/2010 supply. It will be supplemented with about $250 worth of propane. Some days I'm just too lazy to build a fire.

Note the assault saw. It's largely as issued by the Stihl Armory, but I've replaced the original carry gear with a a semi-custom Husqvarna OWB rig of high-density polycarbonate. It is awkward when wearing business attire but compensates with a high level of safety. In many years of use, this rig has never caused an accidental amputation.

Every Man a Minute Man

I never enter the woods unarmed. Today's carry piece features the well-proven flintlock system in marine boarding pistol platform from an unknown custom shop c. a. 1740-1820. About .69 caliber, smooth bore. Fully equipped with serviceable flint held in vise padded with bambiite.

Jul 22, 2009


Along the Mississippi River, well upstream of the Twin Cities sprawl, a very nice dog, owned by a very nice couple, is quite ill. Recovery is something of a long shot, but maybe if enough good people send enough kind thoughts in that direction...

I've known her for most of her ten years, and may I say that I have never met a dog quite so ... well ... polite.

But not servile, as several woulds-be alphas learned when they finally crossed Moose's tolerance line.

Illiterate Redneck Gun Creeps

BookFinder.com is one of the net's good resources for out-of-print books, and once a year or so it publishes a report on the top 100 searches of its databases. The most recent one shows four of the top hundred to be dangerously subversive rants by armed Enemies of the State:

Keith, Elmer - Hell, I Was There

Rule, Roger C. - The Rifleman's Rifle: Winchester's Model 70, 1936-1963

Sharp, Philip - The Rifle in America

Howe, James Virgil - The Modern Gunsmith


Nice first editions of the Sharp and Howe books are on the Camp J shelves, but I covet a copy of Keith's book. Also of Bill Jordan's No Second Place Winner.

Jul 20, 2009

Travis McGee, horologist

"Meyer, the longest 28 minutes in the world begin when you put the brownies in the oven."

Jul 19, 2009

We have already assumed the position?

I make a small hobby of reading survivalist and Armageddon novels. One of them I missed long ago and recently read is a 1971 work called Vandenberg by Oliver Lange.

It's a real stinker with one saving grace -- its premise that Americans have allowed themselves to be conditioned to accept any tyranny so long as they are permitted their accustomed creature comforts. This lets Lange get away with a vast plot simplification about the genesis of America slavery in the late decades of the 20th Century. The Russians destroy Washington, then promise the rest of us three hots and a cot, beer, and plenty of games. We shrug acceptance, even of the concentration camps for the serious non-conformists where the treatment is merely undignified rather than brutal.

After this many months of Obamanization, I do not find Lange's premise incredible.

EDIT: It didn't begin with Obama, of course. He's just the most recent messiah of c'mon c'mon and get happy....

Jul 18, 2009

Golden Oldie -- New York gun laws

to wit:

"...That every able-bodied Male Person, being a Citizen of this State, or of any of the United States, and residing in this State, (except such Persons as are hereinafter excepted) and who are of the Age of Sixteen, and under the Age of Forty-five Years, shall, by the Captain or commanding Officer of the Beat in which such Citizens shall reside, within four Months after the passing of this Act, be enrolled in the Company of such Beat. . . . That every Citizen so enrolled and notified, shall, within three Months thereafter, provide himself, at his own Expense, with a good Musket or Firelock, a sufficient Bayonet and Belt, a Pouch with a Box therein to contain not less than Twenty-four Cartridges suited to the Bore of his Musket or Firelock, each Cartridge containing a proper Quantity of Powder and Ball, two spare Flints, a Blanket and Knapsack; . . ."

An act of the New York state legislature, April 4, 1784

Jul 15, 2009

Big Pow Wow on Plains


Time for the Prairie Land Area annual Friends of the NRA banquet for any of you in southwest Minnesota or northwest Iowa. We hold this shindig at the Hunt Club north of Lakefield, Minnesota, and it just keeps getting larger and larger.

The advance price of $30 gets you a T-bone, a handful of lottery tickets, and an ownership hunk of our pro-shooting work in both states. The profits go toward shooting ranges, youth firearms programs, and wildlife habitat.

We here at the Travis McGee Reader don't ordinarily flog causes other than pure anti-idiotarianism, but the TMR chief propagandist happens to like this bunch of people, so an exception is being made.

Jul 14, 2009

I mean, the hair is bad enough

I wouldn't deviate an inch from my path to greet Sen. Orrin Hatch,* as vile an authoritarian theocrat as ever trod the sacred sands of Provo in New Zion. But at this moment I feel kindly enough toward him to make a campaign contribution.

He has just made the wise Latina look the fool on incorporation. No one following the issue can now fail to believe Sotomayor thinks Heller is irrelevant. Under the "rational belief" standard she loves, Heller would apply nowhere except Washington D.C. It is a permissive standard and could sanction your city council banning firearms because of a public health danger to to citizens' hearing. All you have to do is get a petri dish full of politicians and a few Schumeresque judges to agree deafness is bad and there oughtta be a law preventing it.

Hatch did let her off a little too lightly on her conviction that arms possession and use is not a fundamental right.

Not that it will do any good. Barring evidence of cannibalism, she's in. Since I need to look at her the rest of my life, I just wish Ms. Justice Sotomayor would quit getting her hair done at the barber college.

*Namedropping: I've worked with him, however briefly. His personality is as repulsive as his politics.

Jul 12, 2009

Hopeful change comes to the prairies

South Dakota has a new U.S. Attorney, a fellow named Greg Johnson who is among the "fine attorneys (who) have distinguished themselves as some of the brightest their profession has to offer," (President) Obama said in a statement.

Greg , 34, has been brightly chasing billable hours for a private law firm since 2005 or so. Previously he was a state prosecutor in Sioux Falls where he distinguished himself by trying "a range of felonies and misdemeanors," according to the Sioux Falls Argus-Leader.

He also avows he told his dad to butt out of the appointment process, and U.S. Sen. Tim Johnson, D-S.D., can be right proud that his kid made it strictly on his own merit. Nope, no nepots 'round these parts.

I just knew things would get all unicorny under His Obamaness.

Jul 11, 2009

How quaint

From some garage or auction sale I have an old window fan, the small one with expandable sheet-metal wings designed to be placed under a sash open about ten inches. It's a supurb idea, particularly to exhaust a kitchen where garlic is popular. This morning mine started wheezing and stalling. I was distraught because they're hard to find. Then I remembered how we used to live and took a look. Sure enough, a little hole in the housing is marked, "oil."

Huh? Well of course I keep a can of 3-in-1 oil handy. Do you take me for a yuppie or something?

Jul 10, 2009

Scholarly Report

History reveals all sorts of things, even the probable origin of hoary jokes. For instance, contemporary writer George Ruxton created a composite 1830s Rocky Mountain fur trader named Killbuck who yarned a lament on his bad luck with Indian wives.

"...There wasn't enough scarlet cloth nor beads nor vermilion in Sublette's packs for her. Traps wouldn't buy her all the fofurraw she wanted; and in two years I sold her to Cross-Eagle for one of Jake Hawkins guns -- this very one I now hold in my hands...".

So next time you hear about a guy who got a gun for his wife "great trade, eh," you'll know.

Jul 9, 2009

Say what?

The police chief shot one of his officers in the Carter Lake, Iowa, station yesterday. Here's the official explanation as relayed by the AP

"City Attorney Joe Thornton says Police Chief Shawn Kannedy was discussing firearms with two officers on Wednesday when Kannedy’s weapon went off. Sgt. Dan Driver was hit in the torso."

The chief said "go bang" maybe? Sounds more like a finger on the trigger. There's a rule against that, I think.

Sgt. Dan is in the hospital. Chief Kannedy is under suspension. I am pondering the universal government mantra that us poor klutzy civilians should entrust our personal defense to the "trained professionals."

Idly thinking

Is the Obama administration yet bad enough to make Lyndon LaRouche look good?

Jul 8, 2009

Truth as We See It

H/T to my buddy John, Chief Officer, GMA

Jul 5, 2009

Risque Piece

The heart of this Pelosi pleaser is an Augusta Arsenal rebuild of a 1911. It should shoot okay (not quite done, yet) but the general idea is to irritate the authoritarians.The carbine kit is from the 1980s or '90s, a 16 1/2 - inch barrel and walnut stock serviceable also as an emergency canoe paddle.

Part of the fun is its very illegal appearance. (It is if you install only the stock.)

Jul 3, 2009

The certainly worser Bert Waisanen

A wire story reporting on the degrees of bankruptcy facing California and some rational states contains this:

"Numerous things look worse than some past recessions," said Bert Waisanen, a fiscal analyst with the Denver-based National Conference of State Legislatures. "The housing market is worse. Industrial production is worse. Wages are nearly worse."

No punishment is too great for a linguafelon who would construct "nearly worse," and I'm at a loss even to find a label for the assault against both language and logical thought processes. A subjective hypothetical comparison of a non-comparable eventuation resulting in anti-meaning?

To even begin to justify the impossible concept of "nearly worse," his data had to show wages either the same or slightly better, but to say so would have stalled the verbal cavalry charge.

Vocabulary note

One finally gives up and looks up "bling."

It is an unnecessary word and gentlemen should not use it.

Jul 2, 2009

The Roadworthy Travis McGee

Janine: "Oh how I hate that goddam car. That goddam stinking car. How I hate it!"

Travis: "Janine had nailed it. People hate their cars. Daddy doesn't come proudly home with a new one any more. ... We hate our cars, Detroit. Those of us who can possibly get along without them do so very happily. ... they are expensive, murderous machines, and they manage to look glassily contemptuous of of the people who own them. A (broken) car is something that (made Janine) whomp (her) youngest kid too hard and then feel ashamed...".

This McGeeism is available in its insightful entirety in Pale Gray for Guilt, p. 15 of the Fawcett printings.