Oct 31, 2010


If a guy is looking for one more excuse to hate his cable company, he finds in his internet connection which has been working -- at best -- five minutes each hour for three or four days.

On the other hand, the audio/video sewer pipe works fine, so he can see Halloween, Part 13 if he wants. And a thrilling documentary on ancient aliens inventing Roller Derby on the large asteroid which smashed into our planet, triggering the extinction of sentient life. 

It's Mediacom, in case you're interested.

Oct 29, 2010

Charlie Crist, the Florida guy who wants to be a Senator, told a CNBC chatterer this morning he wants to go to Washington to help folks with "Alzheimer's, heart disease, and diabetes."

So we presume he doesn't give a sweet rat's fart about our brothers and sisters with, tuberculosis, pellagra, beri-beri, scurvy, male pattern baldness, acne, or the heartbreak of psoriasis.

Sounds damned discriminatory if you ask me.

Oct 28, 2010

Bloomberg to Heller: Drop Dead

The New York masters are at it again. Heller and McDonald scare them witless, so they're working on a scheme to subvert the natural rights recognized and guaranteed by Second Amendment and those two decisions.

Late with the rent (which IS too damned high)? No guns for you, deadbeat. Same with unpaid parking tickets, maybe.

(Via The Unwanted Blog)

Oct 27, 2010

The Green Ripper 

McGee has lost both Greta and his own confidence in his feelings:

"We are all at the mercy of the script writers, directors, and actors in cinema and television. Man is a herd creature, social and imitative. We learn the outward manifestations of inner stress, patterning reaction to what we have learned. And because the the visible ways we react are so often borrowed, we wonder about the truth of what is happening underneath. Do I really feel pain, grief, shock loss?"

Sayonara, Meg Whitman

Whitman just told a chatterer on Fox, "I will treat the voters like grownups."

So much for Meg's chances.

The .41 Remington Magnum

A pal has just told Facebook about his pleasure at acquiring a Black Hawk in .41 Magnum, triggering a certain nostalgia around here. It was a caliber which didn't deserve commercial death and probably would have survived if semi-autos hadn't taken over the cops'  world.

I sold mine several years ago for just two reasons. It was a minty three-screw, and I decided I didn't want to subject it to the abrasions of field use. The decision was sealed one night in the reloading shack when it dawned on me  that I was stocking bullets and dies for a ridiculous number of calibers. So, ludditically, I resolved to home-brew nothing other than .38/.357 and .45. It was a practical decision but sometimes regretful -- like wishing you hadn't sent that trusty old girl friend out into the cold just because she demanded liver and onions once in a while.

There a small and amusing chapter in firearms history about the .41 Remington Magnum. About three years before its time, George L. Herter had begun selling a proprietary cartridge called the .401 PowerMag.  He did a good deal of caterwauling to the effect that Remington simply stole his cartridge.

Oct 26, 2010

Tactical Shift: More Bird Shot

The WalMart got some $60 of my money last week in return for enough Remington .22LR hollow points (550 bulk packs)  to bring the inventory to the  xx,000- round  strategic reserve target.

Ever-conscious of the benefits of financial diversification, I turn my attention to those valu-paks of 12-gauge ammunition which now retail for just under 25 cents a round. I wish they came in shot sizes larger than 7 1/2, but I'll be buying anyway.

I do not predict the end of the world as we know it, but, as my Handbook for Boys advised, that's no reason not to Be Prepared.

You object that they are lead and hence widely illegal for hunting? Pish and phoo. Comes any kind of collapse and the Pelosi forces will find greater perils than a few sick coots.


Many of you will find this little hobby of mine ridiculous, and perhaps it is. Yet you may want to note in this morning's financial press  that Ben and His Obamaness plan to, next Wednesday, announce QE2, and I urge you to slip over to Wikipedia and spend a little time reading the entry on Quantitative Easing.  

Besides, if unicornery prevails, we can always shoot the stuff at tin cans and clay birds.

Oct 25, 2010

Tam on P.J. O'Rourke's "Don't Vote. It Just Encourages the Bastards."

A hoot in perfect pitch.

Father of the Year

The old man was irked because his son hadn't been home for two days.  So, in a display of creative parenting, he aimed his van  at the kid's bicycle with the kid aboard the bike.

This  may help explain the lad's preference for extended absences from home and hearth.

Oct 24, 2010

Remington Under Fire

My default mode is that anything on television it is either wrong, misleading, overstated, or oversimplified --  any or all accompanied by contrived hyperdrama.


I just caught the "Remington Under Fire" rerun. I followed it with my  1970s  M700 (a pretty 6mm tack driver) field stripped on my lap. That Remington is now the cleanest firearm on the block, except, importantly, for the innards of its trigger mechanism.

A Remington error in responding to the CNBC report was its emphasis on proper "maintenance," a very iffy thing on an enclosed trigger mechanism. You can scrub the outside of the trigger group box, brush it, wipe it carefully, blow compressed air through the tiny openings, but short of a  bench-strip,  you can not inspect or clean the internal parts. That is a design flaw.

The Remington web site purporting to respond to RUF is weak. It relies on sales patter and appeal to its storied history. It attacks trial lawyers and the show's producers.  It does not not address the technical question. It does not react to  Walker's reservations or  those of professional  M700 users.  Disliking and mistrusting CNBC is not a rebuttal. (I understand its lawyers may be behind the insipid non-response.)

Which is not to say I think the 700 trigger assembly is inherently unsafe. It may be, but I am not competent to judge. Uninformed user tampering, gross maintenance negligence, or the truly freak happenstance can defeat adequate design on anything. There may have been -- probably was, in fact -- poor gun handling involved in some of the unintentional discharges, but he-said, she-said disputes hardly ever reveal technical fact.

I did everything I could to duplicate the reported problems, incessantly working the safety back and forth, trying and failing to get it to rest between the "fire" and "safe" positions, tapping rather hard with a mallet while the rifle was in every possible condition of readiness, bouncing its butt on the carpet. Nothing could induce the old gal to go off by herself.

But that is a long way from definitive proof of anything. For me, the jury is still out. If I decide to take her out again, I may tattoo Rule Two on the back of my right hand.

Putting the bacon in your gas tank

Except for a panicky spike to nearly eight bucks a bushel in 2008, , the price of corn is at an historic high,  about $5.50, so Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack  has decided this is a good time to jack it up a little more.  He will  use your money to buy the oil industry 10,000 new fuel pumps.  Yes, to blend in more alcohol and biodiesel to burn up in our engines. Save the world. Burn food.

“I believe the state of the rural economy and President [Barack] Obama’s vision for rural America compels us to action now."

Let it pass that President Obama's real vision for rural America is a lopsided vote for his party in ten days, probably combined with a federal feasibility study on raising unicorns. Never mind that, at $5.50 a bushel,  the affected members of the rural economy are doing just fine, thank you,

Here in the Midwest we have a multi-year history of watching ethanol plants,  built with huge federal and state subsidies,  prosper and crash  in concert with the level of those subsidies.

Look, ethanol is a marginally acceptable fuel. Mixed with gasoline it will make your car or lawnmower go -- with less power, badly reduced mileage, and a more-than-negligible danger of reduced engine life. It is not cheaper than gasoline.

Anyone can foresee a time when biofuel might become necessary, and when that happens the market will tell us. It will be in demand  without the corrupt price fixing  which so attracts the farm conglomerates and Secretary Vilsack, former  mayor of Mount Pleasant where, as previously reported, he  often raised a mighty fine tomato plant on his pack porch. That's how come he knows so much about agribusiness.

Oct 22, 2010

The Obama on Mythbusters

The subject has been well-covered except for an historical note. Mind you, I am not chastising  His Obamaness for his little joke; I am merely amused by differing standards of what constitutes horror.


Ronald Reagan's unaired  joke while recording his weekly radio address: "We begin bombing in five minutes."

Media reaction: "Oh my God. Cowboy. Cowboy. Paranoid warmonger.  Bonzo at the Button. We are doomed!"


Barack Obama on his Mythbusters cameo:  "I didn't get to blow anything up. I am a little frustrated with that."

Media reaction. (1) How cute. (2) Shrug.

Heady Science

White Cargo (1942)

(From our series on  great spread-spectrum technology breakthroughs in the 20th Century.)

The Brent Favre Crisis

Commenting  to  Wyatt Earp on the Favre crotch shot, Mrs.Crankipants earns this week's coveted TMR Citation for Classic Cutlery:

Having seen the pictures of his package, an ATM receipt would have been more impressive.

The Associated Press and the Assault Rifle

My mole in in the mainstream media alerts me to a development in newsthink. This appeared in the drop at sundown:

Our friends at the AP issued a style update yesterday. It's an attempt at clarification of the term, but presents some obvious problems.

"assault rifle

   A rifle that is capable of being fired in fully automatic and semi-automatic modes, at the user's option. Designed for, and used by, military forces. Also used by some law enforcement agencies. The form: an
M16 assault rifle, an AK-47 assault rifle."

After all these years...

At minimum this should reduce references to Winchester 74 assault rifles. We should all write something nice about the AP today in recognition the Skinner dictum that any tick of good behavior, no matter how slight, should be rewarded.  

Oct 21, 2010

The ethanol bastards

I'm taking advantage of the unicorn weather again today, getting the homestead ready for this winter's global warming, so this will be quick.

Vilsack the tomato grower is on the air waves saying we ought to continue subsidizing turning our food into motor fuel. And besides, we need to keep the heavy tariff on imported ethanol ."

The  ethanol shills have been robbing you blind for years. One of these days I'll work up enough simultaneous rage and ambition to create the mother of all rants about these guys.

If your name is Bubba, you just KNOW.

Commenting on an American Thinker article on the Cheshire murders, an eminent firearms authority says:

Oh and in case anyone is contemplating home defense for themselves and their families, I recommened a shotgun loaded with buckshot over a handgun. It delivers a far more devastating blow on the criminal. Even if you miss, you will still stop them in their tracks and it won't go through a wall. Besides, everyone knows the sounds of a round being cycled into a pump shotgun. That is usually all it takes to make somebody think twice.

Once in a while I suggest  a short Mossy 500 for non-enthusiasts interested in a  home defense piece.  Buckshot is okay, but, on the other hand,  I recommend against missing.  I also question the wisdom of counting on clickety-clack to solve your problems  with the goblin at your bedroom door.

Love the internet. Second only to John Ford movies  in creating gun experts. 

Oct 20, 2010

Blog roll addition: Speaker Tweaker of "Where Sometimes Things Go Bang." Among other worthy traits,  he shares my admiration of non-anorexic women  who are grown up, well groomed, and clothed.

Because I can

Oct 19, 2010

Iowa CCW hiccup

Current law: No guns in the state parks. New law: You may have but not use or show.

Generally,  Barney Fife will have a hard time getting hired as an Iowa cop unless he applies to the Department of Natural Resources.* So a guy should be careful about carrying in the parks. The Department  of Public Safety  makes it clear that concealed carry there is legal but refers to the DNR interpretation:


Parse that. Among other things it seems to require that the gun be absolutely concealed. Carrying openly is displaying, as is sitting on a log with your buddy and letting him examine your Black Hawk over mid-morning coffee. Actually using it to counter a threat also seems to be grounds for prosecution.  Until all this is thrashed out via statute, re-interpretation,  or case law, I'd avoid attracting the attention of the  guy in the Smoky Bear hat.


The new law bars sheriff's from imposing restrictions on the type of weapon covered by the CCW. One effect of that is also a DNR matter.  Sheriffs have frequently written CCW restrictions to forbid violating game laws which require that rifles and shotguns in vehicles be unloaded and cased,  leading  to this from the DNR:

While a person with a valid permit under Iowa Code § 724.7 may carry their firearm 
uncased and loaded in the vehicle, the Department strongly urges persons with a 
permit to continue to transport their firearms in a carrying case and unloaded for safety purposes. 

The statute was on the books mostly to prevent road hunting, rather widely viewed around here as unethical.  Let your conscience be your guide.   And don't forget that this year's hunting is governed by the old law.


*Anecdotal evidence of how these guys operate suggests the Barney reference, but that's another post. 

Iowa Concealed Carry Reciprocity

You can whiz through the Hawkeye State on I-80 secure in the knowledge that we'll honor your CCW, even if you're using it to cover that souvenir switchblade you haggled for down in Tampico back in '72. 

The  Iowa DPS FAQ on the new shall-issue law (effective Jan 1, 2011) says:

with an Iowa issued permit. 

Now,suppose you get nabbed by a cop charged with assessing the speed tax. You are not required to tell him you are armed, but the DPS thinks you should:

QUESTION: If I am stopped by a law enforcement officer in Iowa, am I required to declare that I am carrying a loaded firearm? 

ANSWER: No, but it is really good idea. Iowa law does not require such a declaration; however, as a safety measure for both the 
permit holder and the officer, making such a declaration voluntarily is recommended and encouraged. 

You handle it your way. Personally I would would make damned sure I was talking to an actual officer rather than a costume shop customer then tell him or her if I had a weapon on my person. If the gun was tucked away in the glove box I probably wouldn't bother. Why extend a conversation you didn't want in the first place?

Oct 18, 2010

Iowa Concealed Carry, Open Carry

We're a couple of months away from the  effective date of Iowa's new shall-issue law, and the Department of Public Safety has issued a FAQ on how it will work. For a government publication, it's remarkably straight forward.

Among other things it clarifies the open-carry issue. With a carry permit, you may carry concealed or openly in cities and towns despite any local legislation. The wording is:

QUESTION: Under the new law, do I have to carry my handgun concealed? 
ANSWER: Iowa law has not changed in this regard. You may carry concealed or you may carry openly; however, most permit holders 
carry concealed to avoid making it obvious that the person is armed, thus avoiding unnecessary attention, concern, or alarm. 

The expiring may-issue law did permit open carry in cities for CCW holders, but it held a hemlock dose. Sheriffs could jerk your mother-may-I  for any reason, including offending the sensibilities of your fellow Target shoppers with a visible weapon.

That said, I rather like the FAQ wording. It confirms your right but suggests that you might want to exercise it with a bit of discretion to avoid numerous and monotonous discussions with peace officers summoned by the nervous.   

Which raises the question of businesses' right to ban guns. Iowa law remains silent on the subject, and I expect the issue to be litigated sooner rather than later. Just as it has elsewhere, it pits the right of a business to control things on its own property against your right to defend yourself anywhere.  

I would be less unchurched  if my clergy person was  the the Reverend Mary Edwards, of Collingbourne Ducis, near Marlborough, on the Plains of Salisbury in Merry Olde.

Something of a scholar, she discovered that her commission included the right to muster her parishioners  for practice with lethal weapons in defense of the realm. And so,  this spring, she did just that.

Mrs Edwards said: "It's an unrepealed law from some time in the middle ages and I can call all the men - but I've extended it to all people - in the parish to archery practice."

And I am here to tell you that this woman knows how to command a militia.

"Residents were rewarded for complying with the law with a bar, a barbecue and live music."

The occasion for the bending of the yew was completion of an indoor loo, the church's first.

The extent of diaper dampening in Parliament is thus far unreported.


As a descendant of Fearghael of Longford in Leinster, or perhaps Fearghael of the wild Wicklow Mountains,  I find myself suspecting  -- or  perhaps merely hoping -- that  her pedigree begins somewhere in Hibernia.

Oct 17, 2010

Sunday Sermon: The Tea Party Goes to Washington

Dearly Beloved of the Tea Party:

The Democrats have thrown in the towel. The president  is making his excuses pre factum. The national Democrats  circle the money wagons, pulling cash from dozens of races once thought competitive.  They recognize that votes are commercial commodities, and they can't afford many of them, so they desperately defend the 40 acres around the homestead in hopes of living to fight another day.

So the "conservatives," the Republicans, and  the Tea Party  will win. I haven't read anyone, high or low, who can articulate a plausible event which would  change this.

Welcome to power and Gordian knot of how to use it.

Oh, I know you'll begin with the ego trip of trying to snag preferable offices in the Rayburn and  Hart buildings. You'll direct your handlers to lobby for the committee assignments most likely to attract the teevee cameras to your angelic faces.  You'll almost immediately have a thousand bills drafted, proposals going nowhere except, via posturing, pandering,  news releases to your district  newspaper desks.

Having won your seats by vilifying Washington and its politicians you will, before the cherry blossoms bloom again,  have become Washington politicians,  sharing the breed lust to remain one.

The troubling thing is that, as a group, however loosely organized,  you have no more coherent message than the scoundrels you replace. The mantra of "lower taxes, smaller government"  -- an outstanding idea -- flows trippingly from the tongue and meets loving ears among the over-taxed, over-policed, over-regulated American citizenry. Unfortunately it collides between those ears, on the rock of "where's mine?".

Meaning what are you going to do after you abolish the Department of Education? (Another good idea.) A significant number of you are winning less because you have workable notions about  how to restore liberties and more because you have rekindled the hopes of the window-peeping theocrats.  So you will think seriously about  the fund-raising and electoral benefits of a gay marriage amendment, a Constitutional ban on flag burning, a positive assertion that teachers must lead public classroom prayers.

Given another primary source of  your vote-buying money, you can't fail to sympathize with the welfare queens represented by the Farm Bureau, the National Federation of Independent Business, the Chambers of Commerce, the American Bankers Association.  After all, the next election cycle starts about the time you hire the first meat to staff your office.

Redistributing honestly earned wealth is both morally wrong and economically destructive whether the pigs you feed are coke moms  breeding for DHS  checks or Hank Greenburg's insurance giants.

The chattering media have been faithful about attaching the term "libertarian-leaning" to your Tea Party.  We will shortly know whether they know what they are talking about and, in the unlikely event they do,  whether you mean it.

As  any simple Bob Jones U graduate knows, all sermons should conclude with an exhortation, a plea for holiness, an invitation to sign on the dotted line.

Here's mine: Please cleave to the notion that The United States of America is not really a place, wonderful though that place is. It is not an adaptation of Roberts Rules of Order, however important procedures may be. America is an idea, and that idea is liberty, the ultimate sovereignty of the individual human being in his private affairs.

Oct 14, 2010

The case for buying boolits

I don't know  why some people  complain about a lack of "blog fodder." My regular morning tour of the financial press alone could keep me writing until the sun sinks slowly into the west, leaving me no time at all to live a life or make fun of politicians and hoplophobes.

I usually resist for three reasons. Not many people around here share my interest. I am usually too lazy to translate money-geek jargon into the kind of English that deals with actual referents.  And the field is defiled by a high proportion of nincompoops who, like His Obamaness, possess formidable bardic talent.

But an exception occurs this morning, probably because it aligns itself  with my prejudices:

“All I see is a wall of liquidity that is eventually going to be chasing too few things,” he says. “This is a story of swinging from paper to things.”

I doubt he's referring specifically to investing in 550-round bulk packs of Federal .22s, but he could be.  

By a "wall of liquidity" he means, of course, hyperinflation as the result of politicians pretending they have enough money to buy voting blocks, and voters willing to go along with the gag.

Chris Martenson is an "economic researcher," and he seems to make part of his living selling videos explaining why paper -- currency, stocks, bonds -- is a fool's investment. I tag along for part of his trip, especially since he's straightforward  in admitting he doesn't know exactly what will happen, or when, or whether a collapse  will be bad enough to  thwart the amazing ability of the human race to adapt. He adamant on just one point: The world debt level is beyond servicing barring an Industrial Revolution 2.0.

Beside, he's an expert who gives me permission to keep investing spare change in those Federals.  
Gunning down persons in the teevee industry has a certain emotional appeal,  but we probably should stifle the urge.

And our excitable cops who get all Dirty Harry and confuse cell phones with handguns are falling somewhat short of their  "serve  and protect" marketing slogan.

Oct 13, 2010

Pretty up the veggies, Tom. Chad and Carol are still eyeballing the fries.

This is petty theft compared to what feds have proven themselves capable of, but I suppose some people still think $2 million is a respectable piece of money.

For a lot less, I would have explained to the Potomac Yokels  -- led by Tom Vilsack in this case -- that it won't work. The kids are smarter than the  psychologists, and if they have a taste for a cheeseburger, you are not going to feed them a kumquat, no matter how pretty the  basket.

I know there's a Constitutional requirement that caring Intellectuals in Washington supervise the luncheon habits of the middle school in Nazareth, Arkansas.  I just can't  think of it at the moment.


Tom Vilsack? He got to be Secretary of Agriculture because he was Iowa  governor and did not make a stink about  Obama's Illinois supporters slipping across the Mississippi and packing the 2008  Iowa caucuses.

He got be governor because the Democrats needed a sacrificial lamb to run against Jim Ross Lightfoot in 1998.  Lightfoot was unbeatable prior to taking the campaign advice of the Iowa Republican Party. Vilsack became the first Democrat elected Hawkeye governor in 30 years.


It's a nice day and I gotta go paint, but I think you are entitled to one more fact about Secretary Vilsack's authority to run American Agriculture and superintend the National Diet.  You see, prior to whipping Lightfoot, he was mayor of Mount Pleasant  where he hardly ever failed to raise a very nice tomato plant in a five-gallon bucket on the deck. I mean, almost every year, unless his wife forgot to water it or something.

Oct 12, 2010

Tom Mix

He killed himself in a car crash  seventy years ago today, not far from Florence, Arizona.

Tom Mix, Texas native, working cowboy,  marshall, Texas Ranger, veteran of the nation's wars.


Don't you just hate the revisionist nitpickers who re-edited that bio from Tom's  press agent? Pennsylvania kid. Army deserter. Most heroic military and/or law enforcement  position held: drum major.

Oct 8, 2010

Competence in South Africa

Our buddy Wouter in Capetown is a shooter, home improver, electronics geek, a jack of most, if not all, trades.  Good thing, and a good thing also that he runs with a pack of similarly competent men and women.

It takes a crowd like that to put together an international steel shoot more or less from scratch, conquering all obstacles with salvaged wire, borrowed equipment, and a can-do mindset which even allowed for reasonable handling of a strange Finn.

As a side note, the USA is listed as a  IMSSU member but we didn't seem to have anyone at the South African shoot.

...and bacon is an option

Krispy Kreme cheeseburger ? Well I'm  damned.

Iowa is a great place to damage arteries and other vitals this weekend. On the other hand, if you seek tall and tan and young and lovely, you might want to consider Rio.

Oct 5, 2010

Get lost, Washington

A guy really hates to say anything nice about California, but since I'm about to praise Montana and Arizona again, it would be gauche to decline a nod of approval to the Golden Bear.

Proposition 19  could pass, sending California before the federal long robes, just like Montana with its Firearms Freedom Act and Arizona, where citizens decided to take it on themselves to repair the massive federal immigration cockup.

The strictly legal points in all three cases seem to center on the Constitution's supremacy clause. Morally they test our cherished cultural myth that laws require the consent of the governed, not to mention the abuse to which malum   prohibitum   statutes are  prone.

Malum prohibitum?  Wrong because there's a law against it, period.  In 1961, for instance, Sammy Davis Junior married May Britt. If he had done so in Virginia both he and Britt would  have been felons, guilty of miscegenation.

Malum in se laws are what we're after. They  prohibit acts which are evil in and of themselves, like stealing  a Twinkie from your buddy's lunch box or auctioning off a senate seat in Illinois.

In one way or another, the Arizona, California,  and Montana laws, reflect a popular revolt against the mala prohibita which is too often a simple lust for federal political control of the citizenry or of local jurisdictions.

I don't know how any of the three issues will be resolved, of course.  I suspect the firearms freedom acts will fail and that the courts will  gut Arizona's immigration control drive. The California initiative to legalize personal marijuana use for adults is said to be a dead heat this week. If it happens to pass, I'd give it at least a slim chance of judicial approval.

But the results are less interesting that the grass-roots pressure. Libertarian thought -- even among those who couldn't define "libertarian"  -- seems to have come a long way.

EDIT: An Ipso poll just reported has Proposition 19 down, 53-43.

Worse than reefer madness

I find myself in another government database.

In response lingering sinus-clogging crud I just stood at the counter for close to 15 minutes while the pharmacy tech registered me with the state and confirmed I could be trusted with a pack of generic pseudophedrine.

Let me assure you I accept this sort of thing cheerfully, secure in the knowledge that the two-year-old law has cleansed us of the meth scourge.

Notes from a shut-in

I must have seriously offended the Cosmic Deciders. Lord knows I try to be good. The list of repairs, improvement,  mowing, preparations for winter, and general titivation of Camp J would do credit to a man half my age. So what thanks do I get? A case of flu-like crud whose demand for Kleenex requires a re-thinking of the month's budget.

Yesterday, at 2 p.m.,  I was exercising the chain saw and splitting maul on a pile of ash and elm, smugly congratulating myself for a good start  on the 2011-2012 home heating needs. At 2:30 p.m.I was crapped out on the  couch, the teevee on, moaning about a sandpaper throat, sinuses overloaded with weapons grade mucus, the bodily strength of a bunny, and a four-aspirin headache.

It's mildly better this morning,  but I have a legal case against The Council of the Fates. Surely a proscription is written somewhere against imposing this sort of dysfunction during the most glorious week any October could could be expected to produce.

Oct 3, 2010

What if they gave a health care and nobody came?

Actually, they did.

The Central Planners appropriated $5 billion for this part of Obamacare -- insurance for the allegedly uninsurable -- but so few have signed up that they can't seem to spend it all. (But mark me down as one who believes They  will find a way.)

Oct 2, 2010

Alert Alert Alert

The administration of  His Obamaness  is considering warning Americans to be vigilant when traveling in Europe.

Wonder if it is to be paired with a warning to be vigilant in Washington, D.C., or when visiting the President's homies down around 68th and Halstead?


And on the subject of danger in the streets, why are the media blacking out the Washington and Chicago blood baths in the wake of Heller and McDonald? Could it be that old Vast Right Wing Conspiracy again?

Mexican bizarre

You can't make this stuff up. Not even Fox News can make it up.

Mexican border town mayors are complaining because the United States returns their Mexican-citizen criminals to Mexico.  The mayors think it best for the U.S. to keep the thugs on the U.S. side where Norteamericanos can pay for their keep. Failing that, we should at least fly them to their Mexican home towns.

Ciudad Juarez Mayor Jose Reyes blamed U.S. deportation policy for contributing to his city's violence, saying that of the 80,000 people deported to Juarez in the past three years, 28,000 had U.S. criminal records -- including 7,000 convicted rapists and 2,000 convicted murderers.

Funny, I've been reading for years that illegal immigrants are gentle souls, moving here only to satisfy our desire for cheap lettuce.

Never mind the trouble a guy has of picturing U.S.authorities catching, trying, and convicting an illegal of murder, then punishing him with a  bus ticket to Juarez.

H/T to Wyatt Earp

Oct 1, 2010

Whatever optimism I still have about the human race was depleted when I flipped on the electric teevee for a news check. HLN was reporting that a white woman moved into a black neighborhood three months ago and, one month a go, hung up a confederate flag. The neighbors are petitioning the city council -- I didn't catch where -- to make her take it down.

Wrong. She has a perfect right to fly the flag. On the other hand, I would not actively object to a new ordinance making her wear a temporary tattoo on her forehead.

"I am a tasteless old bitch, and not smart."

Six months sounds about right.

California Open Carry

The City of San Diego has confessed that its cops didn't know or didn't care what they were doing  a couple of years ago when they harassed and arrested Samuel Wolanyk for openly carrying an unloaded handgun. That is legal in California, but several street officers, their sergeant, and the booking officer didn't know it.

The bad and wholly unnecessary bust case was settled for $35,000 and a letter from the cops affirmatively stating that Wolanyk was an innocent citizen, wrongly arrested,

The city got off too cheap, if you ask me.

True Laws Are Real (2)

When you rebuild the roof over a bay window without a building permit, you commit a criminal act in a certain small  town -- even if your repair does not change the foot print of the house.

Without an official "variance," you can't get a building permit because,  you scum, you live in a "non-conforming structure."  That's because the home sits 30 feet from the  rear property line rather than the required 35. That travesty is a relic of the era before it occurred to local politicians and busybodies that government ought to decide what is neighborly -- and aesthetically pleasing -- through zoning laws crafted like a cheap rayon sock. One size fits all. Never mind that your modest little cabin occupies less than 1000 square feet on an acre-plus  in a town where a lot 50 feet by 200 feet is usual.

It costs $200 to apply for a zoning variance. It takes about two months, if you're lucky, and requires a set of engineering drawings and a survey map. You need to appear at a Board of Adjustment  meeting,  tug your forelock again and humbly explain why it is a hardship to have your roof leaking perilously close to your laptop.

If the board says "no," it still gets to keep your $200. Then you either  live with the leak or smear big globs of black tar over where you think it  originates. That's legal.

Tip O'Neil should have written two corollaries. Tyranny is local. So is idiocy.

And if that ain't the Lord's own truth I'll kiss your arse on the rooftop and give you an hour to fiddle up  a crowd.