Category Archives: Uncategorized

Tom Spooner’s “Old Soldier” — Sung in a Special Operations team room

Tom Spooner put the following online a year ago; we missed it at the time. OTR flagged us to it last night. As we understand it, Tom wrote this song, but it is another D guy performing it, in a team room. A bit long and sad for our taste in music, but it deserves a wider audience, and that’s you guys. Tom is former SF and retired Delta, with most of his time spent in Delta. When there’s a pic of a bunch of guys and one face isn’t fuzzed out, that’s Tom.

Not all the images used here are Delta shots or even Army or SOF guys. You’ll recognize Marine First Sergeant Brad Kasal, for instance. The pictures all do fit the “Old Soldier” theme.

Now, we never went to Delta. We know little about the JSOC elements, but what we do know can be encapsulated in a sentence: those who talk don’t know, and those who know, don’t talk, and that’s as it should be. 

We’ve lost a lot of good guys in these long, fruitless, ill-supported wars. But if there’s anything that deserves to be known to the public, it’s that we have a lot of good guys who still show up every day, take the mission they get handed, and do it with brio.

The mission in the GWOT was different from the mission in the 90s, which was different from the mission in the 80s, or 70s, and back in the sixties there were guys running recon in denied areas, because that was the mission then.

The mission next year, decade, next war, is going to be different. The only thing in common is that “young enthusiasts in camouflage uniforms, to whom a kinds of tricks would be taught” will turn out and take that mission and make history with it. Sometimes the history takes 10, or 30, or 100 years to be released to the public, but remember what we said about the ones that know and don’t talk?

For them, it’s quite enough that they know. 

Friday Tour d’Horizon Week 35

We’ll cover the usual subjects: Guns, Usage and Employment, Cops ‘n’ Crims, Unconventional (and current) Warfare, and Lord Love a Duck! And maybe some other stuff, because whatever the hobgoblin of our little mind is, we can pretty much rule out consistency.

Guns

We really wanted to write more about these gun stories. So many guns, so few fingers….

Good Stuff at Forgotten Weapons

Ian has been mining the upcoming RIA premier auction for interesting stuff. Here’s a Russian FN 1903 shoulder-stocked pistol, for example, or a 1960s retro-futuristic GyroJet Rocket Carbine.

Like Ian, we’ve always found stocked pistols cool, and fun to shoot.

The Continuing Adventures of Bubba the Gunsmith

No comment.

bubba_gunsmites_a_tokarev

Really, no comment.

State Department’s 1st Amendment Revocation Headed to Court of Appeals

The State Department’s attempt to put firearms technical information under a complete lockdown won the preliminary injunction stage at Federal district court, so the next step is a trip to the 5th Circuit. A report on the case by Scott J. Gruenwald, who appears to be suffering a degree of cognitive dissonance between his pro-liberty and anti-gun preferences, ran in 3DPrint.com. Nothing is filed yet and the DD v. US page has not been updated as of press time, but the filing will likely go there when it is delivered to the Court.

Bubba Again? There’s Gotta Be an Easier Way to Make a Bicycle

Found on Teh Interwebz:

AK47-Bicycle

Actually, this is the level of handcraftsmanship that the Bubbas at Century aspire to.

Is that mag catch going to snag a rider’s shoelaces, or what?

Apparently no one ever told this cat that you can buy a bicycle for $50 at Walmart, $10 on Craigslist, %0 on Freecycle, or just do like a Black Lives Matter poster child and steal one.

Printed? Casted? Just celebrate diversity!

That’s probably not what the President means when he’s talking about “Diversity.” But printed? Casted? Red, green, yellow, black or white? (That’s +1 on the races of the world right there).

Celebrate Diversity printed and casted

Not the President’s diversity? Just goes to show, with all due respect for the man and the office, he’s wrong.

Colt is Hiring, Sort Of

Colt has a few positions open, while it still negotiates the bankruptcy produced by a rapacious management. Meanwhile, the managers who seek to hang onto the company while expropriating bondholders of $350M have demanded millions of dollars in bonuses from the courts. The open positions are all management/exempt positions. Given the politics of Connecticut courts, they don’t dare address any part of their cost issues that relates to staying in high-cost Connecticut, or maintaining a high-cost, low-quality UAW labor force.

If the Court approves the bankruptcy as proposed, Colt’s failure is not solved, but the day of reckoning is kicked further along the road, and more to the point from the managers’ viewpoint,  they get to keep pocketing other people’s millions, which is why they became hedge fund managers in the first place.

New Flamethrower Threatened With New Ban

We recently covered the new Ion Productions flamethrower, which is made in Warren, Michigan, a decaying industrial suburb of Detroit. The Mayor of Warren, one Jim Fouts, is so alarmed that people may be buying something inflammable from his town, other than Pintos, and so determined to keep the people on welfare where he can be their Supreme Personality of Godhead, that he’s trying to bull a ban through the City Council.

“I support Second Amendment rights,” the mayor, a national socialist, says…. do any of you care to get the next word after his comma?

Yes, that would be the “abnegatory ‘but'”, the conjunction that cancels out the first clause of the sentence. Fouts doesn’t support the Second Amendment. He probably looks really spiffy in a black Hugo Boss uniform. After all, you can’t spell “Boss” without the last two letters!

Usage and Employment

The hardware takes you only half way.

Exercise with Guns?

We don’t wear form-fitting stuff (at this age, the form is rotund anyway) and simply carry a pocket pistol in a pocket, if the event doesn’t work with a holster. But NRA has a simple one-pager of suggestions for staying gunned-up when you’re working out. It’s mostly common sense, but you’d be surprised how uncommon that is.

Defoor’s on De Toor

CT Closed OutOK, we’ll cop to the terrible pun, but Our Traveling Reporter tells us that Kyle Defoor has his 2016 schedule up (albeit incomplete, as he’s still placing dates on the calendar)…
….and they’re already filling up. (Not surprising as he’s very reasonably priced for that level of instructional skill). We confirmed this with a visit to his page, during which a Connecticut pistol class closed out (and Connecticut is a lousy place to take a class, as it’s a ban state with a 10-round mag limit, and the state’s staggering taxes make food and lodging in CT a poor value).

Kyle Defoor continues his wiseass hashtaggery. His stuff is worth reading for that alone.

Kyle Defoor continues his wiseass hashtaggery. His stuff is worth reading for that alone — in this case, especially if you’re a fan of Billy Joel’s 1980s Beatlesque album, The Nylon Curtain.

We mentioned that our handgun skills were somewhat atrophied and we were back in the Crawl stage of the famous military Crawl, Walk, Run cycle. This brought a sharp response from OTR: “Do not go to Defoor unless you’re at Run!” What he means by that is that you’ll get the most out of it if you’re already at a decent level. Here’s how Kyle explains typical prerequisites:

The 2-Day Pistol course is recommended for those that have attended shooting courses before or who have a thorough understanding of pistol and carbine basics and already have safe gun handling skills.

If your pistol, precision rifle or carbine skills meet basic professional standards and you want to take them up a level in a single weekend, he’s a great instructor. (Mike Pannone is another, and Mike’s an SF guy. Defoor is one of those frogman creatures. NTTAWWT).

Cops ‘n’ Crims

Cops bein’ cops, crims bein’ crims. The endless Tom and Jerry show of crime and (sometimes instantaneous) punishment.

New Jersey Cops bag another Concealed Carrier

Cops in New Jersey don’t pursue criminals. You could get hurt doing that! Instead, they make a regular practice out of rolling up unwary residents from other states who don’t realize that Christiestan is a rights-free zone. They just bagged another, Brian Fletcher, who had come in from North Carolina because New Jersey’s native population of hedge fund clerks and welfare recipients need to call out of state to fix their cell towers.

How Crims Get Guns in CA: From Cops

Dateline, Oakland, August

The theft of the semi-automatic pistol and other items belonging to the officer was reported about 9:59 a.m. Wednesday [26 Aug.] in the 3000 block of East Ninth Street near a Starbuck’s coffee shop in the Fruitvale Station shopping center.

Dateline, Richmond Point, August

Last Friday [21 Aug.] a loaded gun, badge, and other items were stolen from an unmarked SUV belonging to UC Berkeley Police Chief Margo Bennett, who had parked the vehicle at Richmond’s Point Isabel Regional Shoreline while she jogged before work.

Dateline, San Francisco, July.

In another incident in July, a gun stolen in San Francisco from the car of a federal Bureau of Land Management agent was reportedly used to kill Kathryn Steinle on Pier 14 in the city.

Neither of the August thefts has turned up. The July stolen gun was recovered after a criminal alien used it in the murder. While California laws about gun storage are strict, being a cop means never having to say you’re sorry. In California, none of the reckless cops who left weapons unattended have been charged or disciplined at all — and none of them has said they’re sorry, the heartless, soulless BLM agent particularly maintaining a position of contemptuous, haughty and lawyered-up silence to his victim, Kate Steinle.

The CA Attorney General says this about firearms storage and responsibility:

You may be guilty of a misdemeanor or a felony if you keep a loaded firearm within any premises that are under your custody or control and a child under 18 years of age obtains and uses it, resulting in injury or death, or carries it to a public place, unless you stored the firearm in a locked container or locked the firearm with a locking device to temporarily keep it from functioning.

Unless you’re a cop. Then you have the Thin Blue Patent of Nobility.

Australian Cops Step Up Confiscation

Savage-coverIn Western Australia (one of the States into which OZ is organized) the police have been confiscating rifles. Not semi-autos, and not pumps — they already got all those, and they’ve been making noises about lever-actions. But the Target for Today is bolt-action rifles that look, in the inexperienced eye of any one Bronze at any given time, like they might be military.

The actual stocks used in our M24s? They’re OK. Some of the chassis stocks made for the civilian market, and heavy-as-the-Great-Barrier-Reef stocks made for benchrest competitors? Nope, some guy says they’re military, so to the smelter they go.

Elmer Fudd thinks the tiger isn’t going to eat him if he throws the collectors and self-defense shooters in its path. It’s just going to eat him later. 

Unconventional (and current) Warfare

What goes on in the battlezones of the world — and preparation of the future battlefields

Irish Democracy meets Red-light Revenue Cameras

Here are three stories of a guy who got jammed up for knocking red-light cameras out of line and crimping crooked cop/bureaucrats’ free flow of lucre: The Federalist, Sachem Patch, and Stephen Ruth’s own Facebook Page. Most of the money from these schemes go to the politically connected, crony crapitalist companies that fun this for-profit venture.

The Train Attack — It Can’t Happen Here

Because Amtrak is a gun-free zone… just like the Thalys express train in Europe. How did that work out. Katie Pavlich writes in The Hill:

Since moving to Washington, D.C., years ago, I’ve become what is known as a Northeast Corridor Acela passenger. I often travel to New York City for work, and the train goes straight to Penn Station in the heart of Manhattan. It’s convenient, but the majority of the time I don’t feel safe. I can’t imagine I’m the only one.

Three years ago I was on the Acela headed north, on Sept. 11, when the train stopped between D.C. and Baltimore. The Amtrak engineer came over the loudspeaker to explain that there were wires down in front of the train on the tracks and wires down behind us, and that we wouldn’t be going anywhere for a while. “A while” turned into 10 hours of sitting on the tracks, with no option of getting off.

While we were waiting — and as I often do when there’s a delay — I thought about how we were helpless, defenseless, sitting ducks. We couldn’t get off the train, the train couldn’t move and it would be easy for someone on the train to carry out an attack or for someone outside of the train to make their way aboard.

Fortunately, if terrorists wiped out the habitués of the Acela Express, the country would survive. Yes, even the loss of the flower of Wall Street, congressional staffs, and big-J Journalism. Survive, hell, it’d probably benefit.

Veterans’ Issues

They can get ’em to join, in a major initiative to bring vets into the Federal government, but they can’t get ’em to hang around.

The bad news is that once veterans get into government, they don’t stay long. They’re more likely to leave their jobs within two years than non-veterans, the Office of Personnel Management reported.

The Small Business Administration had the most trouble keeping veterans in fiscal 2014, with just 62 percent staying two years or more, compared to 88 percent of non-veterans. Former service members left the Commerce Department at similar rates, with 68 percent staying two years or more compared to 82 percent for non-veterans.

Even the Department of Veterans Affairs, traditionally a draw for former troops, lost a little more than a quarter of its veterans within two years, compared to 20 percent of its non-veterans.

The initiative has fueled tensions in federal offices, though, as longtime civil servants and former troops on the other side of the cubicle question each other’s competence and qualifications.

So why don’t the vets stay? Maybe cause working for the .fed has all the embuggerments of serving in the military, without any of the rewards?

Lord Love a Duck!

The weird and wonderful (or creepy) that we didn’t otherwise get to.

Here’s a Congressman with a Clue:

massie non gun free zoneIs yours like this, or is he the other kind?

Hat tip, Aaron Spuler at Weapon-Blog.com. (This guy is Aaron’s Congressman).

You can’t keep a good technology down

Goodyear’s blimps are being retired, and will be replaced by a new generation of semi-rigid airships. After the US (Akron and Macon), UK (R100-R101) and Germany (who can forget the Hindenburg) had some bad experiences, the only airships left for decades were nonrigid, frameless blimps. But in recent years Zeppelin NT and others have shown that modern materials and other technologies make a framed or partially-framed airship a machine of great potential.

A more serious threat to the airships is the US blowing out Government helium stocks, which are mostly being wasted because of the subsidized low price, and the price shock coming when the ancient US reserve bottoms out.

Buy My Degree for 1/4 Of What I Wasted On it!

That’s the pitch from a woman who got a degree in the jobstopper field of Theatre from Florida State University. Hot tip kid: schools that are known for their football program are not where Broadway is looking for its next generation of talent

Stephanie Ritter, a 26-year-old Florida State University alum, has listed her diploma on eBay for the staggering sum to cover the ‘actual cost’ of attending the school.
Now $40,000 in debt and living in Southern California, Stephanie is fed up with being unable to find a job in her field, despite having a Bachelor’s degree – so she’s come up with a drastic solution to pay off her loans and ‘validate my use of time between 2007-2011’.

It’s only a solution if someone thinks an FSU Theatre degree is worth $50k, which seems unlikely. She has a Plan B and Plan C though:

Though Stephanie seems to recognize the unlikelihood that someone will actually purchase her very expensive piece of paper, she hasn’t given up all hope of achieving financial stability, and told BuzzFeed that she dreams that ‘a very rich family would adult Daddy Warbucks me.’
And if that doesn’t work out either, she has a back-up plan.

‘If that falls through, honestly, [I will] just do that thing where I pay the minimum for 25 years and then the government feels so bad for you that they wipe it clean,’ she said.

Anybody wonder why our generation thinks a large slice of her generation comprises a bunch of sniveling, spoilt, entitled wastes of skin?

A Theatre degree signals to employers: drama queen. It’s not the worst degrees, those are any kind of Grievance Studies.

Off Topic but Fascinating: Mormon and Orthodox Jewish Dating Demographics

This article at the usually worthless Time magazine is an excerpt from a book that examines, among other things, the sex imbalance in dating in certain closed communities (meaning they don’t seek a match outside their group), like Orthodox Jews and Mormons.

In both cases, a surplus of young women is facing too few men, and the reasons are demographic but different: among Mormons, young men are more likely to drop out of LDS than young women, leaving a lot of potential perfect wives unclaimed. Orthodox Jews have a very low religious drop-out rate, so the cause there is different. The demographic growth of Orthodox Jewry (thanks to their preference for large families) means that each year the cohort is larger, so a 2-3 year age difference (male over female) means there will always be more younger women for the men who are a couple years older to choose from. And unusually, among the flavors of Orthodox Jews, Hasidic Jews do not have a marriage imbalance, because their marriage practice is for husband and wife to be of equal age.

Funny, the difference between two couples, one 21 year olds and the other a 19 and 23 year old  might carry within it the demographic seed of many “extra” women who can’t find husbands. (Meanwhile, in China and other Asian patriarchal societies, the advent of ultrasound and abortion has ensured that the “extras” will be men, which has different societal problems). You can’t really match the Chinese men with the “extra” Mormon and Jewish women, not when this is all driven by culture, religion, and identity.

How Criminals Gun Up in Shreveport: With Cop Guns

Missing, presumed pilfered.

Missing, presumed pilfered.

Officer Thomas LaValley of the Shreveport, LA police was ambushed and killed two weeks ago. His murderer took his Glock, a fact the police department initially covered up.

At least ten more department pistols are missing, including one stolen in February along with the officer’s badge, radio and protective vest.

Shreveport police revealed Wednesday officer Thomas LaValley’s service weapon is missing. It’s been two weeks since the officer was killed answering a suspicious person call.

That’s all police are saying.

“We’re not ever going to do or say anything that would potentially compromise the operational integrity of an investigation,” SPD chief administrative assistant Bill Goodin said.

Shreveport police in February said there are at least 10 pistols missing from their inventory. Now LaValley’s Glock gone.

Police think Grover Cannon, the suspect in the slaying, stole the weapon. Cannon is in custody and is not cooperating with the search for the gun, police said.

via Few details available on LaValley’s missing firearm.

A lot of people seem to think that if we did X, Y or Z we could end “gun violence,” as if the Grover Cannons were getting their cannons from Cabela’s. Unfortunately, as records show, Grover and his ilk can get guns from family and friends, from criminal associates, from theft from legitimate users, and even by murdering police officers.

Guns do make suicide very easy, and that’s why purveyors of instant “gun violence” solutions like to use “gun violence” numbers that include self-destruction along with accidents and homicides (lawful and unlawful). These people are sincere, but their thinking doesn’t reach the necessary depth. For instance, on suicides, it doesn’t occur to them that suicidal intent will seek a weapon of opportunity, and given the fragility of Homo sapiens, such a thing is always at hand. Nobody really knows how much locking up weapons (or, for example, fitting bridges with jumper nets) deters suicide, versus how much it merely displaces it to a less inconvenient method. For instance, on homicides, it doesn’t occur to them that the thing differentiating a spree shooter from a gun collector — murderous intent — is the same thing differentiating a serial slasher from a gourmet chef. The gun, the knife, are mere implements in a hand guided by a mind — the chef’s knife and the murderer’s may be the exact same tool, but one is guided by a creative mind and one by homicidal impulse.

Grover Cannon would still be a threat if he never owned anything that is not your kitchen. It is not late Officer Lavalley’s gun, or the gun he allegedly killed Lavalley with, that made him a threat. It was his heart and his mind that made, and makes, him a threat.

You could make every gun in the world disappear with a magical incantation, and Grover Cannon would still be a threat, a toxin, a pathogen. You could give the Dalai Lama a nuclear bomb and he would be no more a threat than he is now.

When a man’s heart and mind is a threat, he is never disarmed.

Friday Tour d’Horizon Week 34

We’ll cover the usual subjects: Guns, Usage and Employment, Cops ‘n’ Crims, Unconventional (and current) Warfare, and Lord Love a Duck! And maybe some other stuff, because whatever the hobgoblin of our little mind is, we can pretty much rule out consistency.

Guns

We really wanted to write more about these gun stories. So many guns, so few fingers….

Slo-mo shot of a shot

This video appeared at Time.com, which says it’s from the TV show Mythbusters, and the shot is, “never-before-seen slow-mo”.

It isn’t, of course, but it’s still cool to watch the gas dynamics of muzzle blast.

 

Usage and Employment

The hardware takes you only half way.

There’s safety, and there’s safety.

The Associated Press via Fox News:

ND-shot-in-footAn operator of the store’s Facebook page directed reporters to a statement posted late Tuesday that called the shooting “an unfortunate accident.” The statement claimed the man who shot himself came over to the shop to help fix a door in the office “and, as he bent over, his weapon fell from a malfunctioning chest holster and went off when it hit the floor.”

Um, not safety.

“The way they were holding their weapons, with the fingers on the triggers, you can tell a couple of these gentlemen have no idea about weapons safety. It’s like the Clampetts have come to town,” Muskogee County Sheriff Charles Pearson told the online news outlet muskogeenow.com, comparing the armed men to the family in the TV series “The Beverly Hillbillies.”

Funny how the Sheriff assumed everyone would know who the Clampetts were, and the AP reporter assumed everyone wouldn’t.

If you’re making that nest of terrorists, CAIR, look responsible and sensible? Whatever you’re doing, you’re doing it wrong.

Hat tip, Jonn Lilyea at This Ain’t Hell. “[P]aying for a gun is only part of the responsibility of gun ownership.” Amen, brother.

He Didn’t Take Andrew Branca’s Seminar

Law of Self Defense Andrew BrancaThe guy described here by Dean Weingarten chose not to be a victim. But he didn’t stop when the home invaders fled, leading to the peculiar case in which the defender and the surviving home invader are both charged with homicide. Once the guys were fleeing they were no longer an imminent threat. That they’d come back and kill him in his sleep? Cops don’t care. They’re gonna spend all day investigating murders anyway, yours makes no difference to them.

This guy may beat the rap, but if he’d attended a Law of Self Defense seminar and/or read the book, he’d never have fired those shots and his life wouldn’t be on one side of the scales of process (does anybody really think courts do “justice” any more?), with the evidence piling up on the other, principal piece of evidence being the carcass of some worthless skell with his brains blown out back-to-front.

In a closely related subject, Guns’n’Freedom tries to make a preemptive strike on the idea of Shooting to Wound, Warning Shots, and Brandishing — all three are bad ideas, or to be more specific failures of judgment and of understanding the legal terrain.

The Bullet from Nowhere

ND-shot-in-footThe New York Times and its writers would clearly like to ban all guns — at least, the ones not in the hands of the governmental and private hirelings that keep the paper’s only stakeholders, wealthy Manhattanites and people who wish they were, safe from the roiling proles. And that bias sets one’s teeth on edge whilst trying to read this story by one Jack Healy, which is all about how evil hunters, target shooters and plinkers are inflicting their unclean redneck ways with the Right People who are just hiking in the Great Outdoors, with nothing between them and Ursus spp. but their fashionable hiking shirt. As Healy tells it, the urban daytrippers were here first:

America’s cultural divide over guns has gone into the woods. As growing numbers of hikers and backpackers flood national forests and backcountry trails searching for solitude, they are increasingly clashing with recreational target shooters, out for the weekend to plug rounds into trees, targets and mountainsides.

“Growing numbers… flood… searching for solitude.” Hmm, Still, Healy has a point about the death of this man:

Glenn Martin said “ow,” his daughter said, and when his family ran to help him, there was a hole in his shirt and blood pouring from his mouth.

Martin, 60, camping with his family, was killed by a stray shot, possibly fired a mile away. What Healy only mentions very, very late in the article, is that five shooters questioned by Bureau of Land Management police voluntarily allowed their weapons to be tested. None of them fired the fatal shot. The investigation continues.

This is less a problem here in New England where we’re acutely conscious of the borders of our small parcels of land, and there aren’t that many large swaths of land owned by the Federal Government and managed nihilistically by BLM’s Luddite urban environmentalists. But what happened to this poor fellow Glenn Martin was no less than the predictable consequence of a shot fired over a backstop, and we shooters as a community earn the opprobrium Healy and his readers heap upon us, any time we let one go like that.

Know your target and what’s behind it. Sure you’ve heard that before. So did whoever it was that launched the sky ball that dropped in a ruined the Martins’ outing. You don’t get any free errors with a firearm. Any mistake can end somebody’s world.

Training Makes a Shooting Less Likely

John Johnston has an interesting post on what training does and doesn’t do for you. He notes that many people self-defend successfully without training. But argues that training does something almost paradoxical: by raising your Situational Awareness, training makes it less likely you’ll be in a shooting — which is the best possible outcome of a shooting. A rich essay, worth reading and Rereading The Whole Thing™.

Cops ‘n’ Crims

Cops bein’ cops, crims bein’ crims. The endless Tom and Jerry show of crime and (sometimes instantaneous) punishment.

Professor Moriarty is a Fictional Character.

Real criminals are more often rockwits like these two humanoids who decided to gun up, despite being Prohibited Persons, by employing the well known Stealing $#!+ Loophole.

In documents filed in U.S. District Court, prosecutors alleged Johnson and Moore broke into the store through a back window and used a pry bar to smash a display case before filling a bag with the guns. They then ran to a waiting getaway car, according to the documents.
Investigators found the pry bar inside the store and the two cell phones in a back storeroom. On the phones, police found photos that identified Johnson and Moore as the suspects, according to the documents.

Give that man a Wile E. Coyote card, give both of them one. Cops recovered at least 4 of the 19 stolen guns, one of them buried in a place where it was probably a “community gun,” meant to be dug up and used by any local gangbanger. The others will turn up in future robberies and homicides, but remember, the crimes committed by these career criminals in South Bend, Indiana were caused by, say, non-criminal Hoosiers having a gun or a license. Bloomberg said so.

Gun – Situational Awareness + Robber = Robber with Gun

The video at this link has what appears to be praise by the newsreaders for the licensed carrier(!) but he’s lucky to be alive. If you watch the surveillance video, you see that the robber, a lanky black dude in a baseball cap and plaid shirt over pink t-shirt comes up behind a customer at the counter (looks like a lighter-skinned black guy, green shirt and black and white shoes). Plaid shirt went right for green shirt’s gun, and they fight for it. Plaid shirt gets it and fires a round. Green shirt attacks (!) and gun or no gun, plaid shirt bugs out. His face is so clear on the video that he’s hosed; his momma’s gonna want a print to remember him by. But then, criminals never think things through or they wouldn’t be criminals.

With any luck the cops will have some excuse to plug him when they roll him up (if they haven’t already by the time you read this). Some black lives don’t matter, and some people the world’s better off without. This oxygen thief will never amount to anything, so why bother incarcerating him?

As for the legal carrier, whose black (or whatever) life does matter, +2 for an aggressive counterattack and not giving up, and -2 for losing control of his firearm. As we said, he’s lucky to be alive. Good time to check in with a good defensive tactics instructor and get a better holster for your pistol (if you get it back after the cops bust or whack plaid shirt) or the one you replace it with. And keep your situational awareness. Urban convenience stores are favorite robbery targets.

PS. Another link at that site: Gunman holds up Post Office. We dunno, every time we go to do this there are 10 robbers in line in front of us. In all seriousness, though, armed robbery is a violent crime, a crime carried out by threat of murder; why should an armed robber ever see the light of day again?

PPS. Tam discusses this incident (the guy jacking the carrier’s gun, not the PO holdup) among other things, and, as usual, she displays less inchoate rage and more cold logic than we do. She actually discussed it on an earlier post before that. The analyses she links are good, too.

 

Unconventional (and current) Warfare

What goes on in the battlezones of the world — and preparation of the future battlefields

Didn’t Jack Ryan’s Career Start Like This?

A Sudden Jihad Syndrome outbreak on the Amsterdam-Paris train ended prematurely because three Marines, traveling off-duty and unarmed, heard the distinctive sound of AK-mag loading in the toilet. When the 26-year-old Arab nerved himself and burst out of the restroom shooting, he barely got a burst and an “Allah!” out before the Marines showed him who’s really akbar, giving him a good old-fashioned beatdown. He’s the guy on the floor of the train in this picture.

Suspect in France

No idea whether the chick in the platform shoes is one of the Marines. Probably.

The French cops in Arras happily took the jihad failure and his AK (and Jungle Jim killer knife) into custody. Turns out he was an individual already You can see the attacker’s AK mags on the train platform in this image.

Suspect AK mags

Unfortunately the still-unnamed wannabe shaheed did succeed in wounding two passengers seriously (they’re in critical condition) and one lightly. The lightly wounded man has been identified as French actor Jean-Hughes Anglade, who plays TV tough guys. Now he’s seen some real ones in action, and he can take that back to work.

French politicians are trying to suggest that it’s premature to suggest a terrorist motive.

Got Law if you Want It

Lots of people are writing about the DOD’s new Law of War Manual without reading it. Don’t be that guy: read it here (.pdf). Or just do like us, assume it’s all bullshit from lawyers who will do whatever it takes to stab the GI in the back when the time comes, and don’t read or write about it. But it’s there for you.

Be Very Afraid

Hillary Clinton, whose reaction to the death of diplomats she abandoned to an attack in Benghazi, Libya, was “What difference does it make?”, and who ran an email server stashed in a closet someplace that had dozens of classified emails including TS/SCI codeword material, still has an active security clearance.

If that was you who’d done all that, you’d be so far back in Leavenworth they’d have to feed you with a Wrist Rocket.

Government is just a name for the things we decide to all do badly together.

Veterans’ Issues

headstone patioYou kind of have to read this and see the pictures to believe it.

A man in the Ozarks who built a patio out of what he said were discarded military headstones found in a landfill told a TV station on Tuesday that he will remove it.
KSPR TV posted a report with an interview with the homeowner on Tuesday evening.

Navy veteran Ed Harkreader of Mountain Home, Ark., had posted photographs of the arrangement on Facebook last week. The post triggered scores of outraged comments and was shared thousands of times, but the post has apparently since been removed.

The homeowner, whom the station did not name, said: “I was just making something out of nothing. Ninety percent of them are broken. They were never in a cemetery. They went from the monument to the landfill. There were mistakes. I didn’t know.”

So this is a little different from the other sphincter muscle we had lately who was using stolen grave markers as a foundation for his tool shed in Rhode Island.

Lord Love a Duck!

The weird and wonderful (or creepy) that we didn’t otherwise get to.

“Common Sense” Looks Like This

No one is coming for your guns, or magazines. You’re just being paranoid. Oh, those formerly “grandfathered” standard-capacity magazinesNevermind. You didn’t need those for duck hunting. Yep, registration led to confiscation, again, like usual, which is why there is registration. Don’t wanna turn ’em in? That makes you insane, you gotta turn ’em in. Don’t like it? What are you, some kind of Johnny Reb?

Scott Adams of Dilbert Fame

We haven’t gotten around to the Scott Adams (cartoonist of Dilbert fame and patron saint of engineers everywhere) blog in a long time, but this week he’s had a series of posts admiring Donald Trump — with respect to his techniques for shaping an argument, deflecting a “gotcha” question from some mediot like Chris Cuomo, or getting what he wants (by proposing a negotiating position that will leave falling back to his real position looking like a humble compromise). Some of those negotiating points are of value to anyone. Adams is not political and he looks at this, like everything else, with a slightly jaundiced engineer’s eye. His blog is here; nothing to do with guns, so he can’t be a W3, but an entertaining read.

 What Swears Are Sworn Where?

jack-grieve-swear-map-of-usa-gi-z-score-bastardIt’s interesting to see what swears are current in what part of the country, and naturally, there’s an idle professor somewhere who’s mapped it out. Turns out here in New England we’re not too into some pejoratives, but we’ll call anybody a baahstid. 

 

Los Angeles VA Solves the Backlog Problem

VA-veterans-affairsThey did it just about the way you’d expect the VA to. They just shredded the vets’ records. Including letters which “would have had an impact on the veterans’ claims” but that were sent right to the shredderizer without even being opened. Frankly, you couldn’t build an organization that screwed vets more than the VA if you gave the task to ISIL.

The Washington Examiner reports that the Veterans’ Affairs Department’s Office of the Inspector General conducted a no-notice inspection of a Los Angeles office and discovered letters from veterans which were scheduled for the shredder, but they hadn’t been opened or read. Eight of the nine would have had an impact on those veterans’ claims;

“Of the nine claims-related documents, five did not have required initials of both the employee and supervisor and the remaining four had only the employee’s initials,” the report said. “If … staff and their supervisors followed VBA policy, these nine claims-related documents would not have been placed in personal shred bins that are designated for non-claims related documents.”

The report said if the OIG had not stepped in, “it is likely that. … staff would have inappropriately destroyed the nine claims-related documents we found.”

The office couldn’t provide to the OIG a record of the documents that they had shredded over the past few years. Well, at least the VA has found a way to do away with the backlog of claims like they promised.

via LA VA caught shredding vets’ letters : This ain’t Hell, but you can see it from here.

Those responsible have been fired, or at least drawn and quartered, or, please a merciful God, at least given a stern talking-to, right?

Wrong.

This is the VA we’re talking about here.

The OIG didn’t pull a random inspection of the LA office. They got a tip that the office there (and how many more of them?) was shredding correspondence and medical records.

How did they get in this jam? Well, in the VA, everyone gets promoted no matter how bad you are, and the one responsible for record reviews was promoted clean out of responsibility. (That must be every VA payroll patriot’s dream promotion). According to the Washington Examiner (warning, mountains of pop-up spam):

[A] records management officer was supposed to be on staff in Los Angeles to prevent this from happening, but said there was no one in that position from August 2014 until February 2015. The original records officer was promoted, and the office’s assistant director “determined that it was not necessary to fill the … position.”

Officials who tried to take over that role “lacked training regarding maintaining, reviewing, protecting and appropriately destroying veterans’ and other governmental paper records,” the report said.

The OIG said the Los Angeles office couldn’t provide any documentation at all on what documents it had shredded over the past two years.

Why did the position of the Records Management Officer get created in the first place? You know, the promoted drone who didn’t manage the records, so we don’t know what he or she shredded over the years? Well, if we go to the original VA report:

VA Shredding Report.pdf

We can see that the do-nothing, no-accountability, no-show-job was created because of a past history of shredding documents and ruining vets’ claims. 

In response to an OIG report on inappropriate shredding of veterans’ claims in November 2008, VBA created the permanent position of a Records Management Officer (RMO) to ensure the appropriate management and safeguarding of veterans’ records, to include providing oversight of the shredding of documents. The RMO serves as the VARO’s final control to prevent shredding of claims-related documents.

OK, so this person’s only reason for having a job was to prevent the document shredding that he or she apparently carried on with a drunkard’s abandon. But oh, it gets better:

The RMO was promoted to another position in August 2014, and the Assistant Director determined that it was not necessary to fill the RMO position.

OK, we saw how the Examiner reported that already. What happened after that?

We found that Support Services Division (SSD) staff that took over the duties of the RMO lacked training regarding maintaining, reviewing, protecting, and appropriately destroying veterans’ and other Governmental paper records. The Assistant Director assumed that the RMO had provided SSD staff with training but did not ensure this had occurred.

OK, so… with the person hired to prevent document shredding, who apparently never did anything to prevent document shredding, having moved on and left the task in the hands of the same people who were shredding the documents before 2008, but were never held accountable, what do you suppose happened next?

SSD staff stated they would only complete a “cursory review” as they dumped all collected documents and material in shred bins for contractor shredding.

That kind of hinges on what a “cursory review” is, doesn’t it? It’s not a term that breeds confidence, but wait till you see what it meant to these VA payroll patriots.

When asked to define “cursory review”, SSD staff stated they would observe documents as they dumped the documents into the bin destined for contractor shredding.

Is a casual glance a cursory review? It is at VA. You know that none of these bums gives such a “cursory review” to the only document they care about at the office — their gorram pay stub.

So, what were the inspectors’ conclusions?

[I]t is likely that VARO staff would have inappropriately destroyed the nine claims-related documents we found. The shredding of these documents would have prevented the documents from becoming part of the veterans’ permanent record and potentially affect veterans’ benefits. We could not determine whether the VARO staff improperly shredded documents prior to our review. This is because the VARO destroyed documents prior to our arrival, as part of the VARO’s normal records disposition process. Finally, we did not substantiate that Los Angeles VARO supervisors instructed their staff to shred claims-related mail.

We got it. Their fellow-feeling for their fellow payroll patriots means that they cover for them. In court, a jury is instruction that they can infer criminal intent from criminal actions. In the VA, being a government employee means never having to say you’re sorry. Literally.

But they probably published some hard hitting recommendations?

We recommend the VARO Director implement a plan and assess the effectiveness of training to ensure VARO staff comply with VBA’s policy… [yadda yadda blah blah DC CYA boilerplate].

Oh yeah, that’ll really solve the problem.

Any other recommendations? Yeah, they’re going to do ten more “surprise” inspections to see if this is a problem anywhere else — and they announced them in the interim report.

So, the VA did another crap job, covered it up, and is continuing more crap work and coverups. Where’s the “surprise” in that?

tl;dr

The VA’s Los Angeles office has been shredding vets’ letters and claims data more or less continuously for at least seven years — since 2008. After being caught, they used it as an excuse to hire another unaccountable bureaucrat, and continued the shredding with no apparent slowdown. No one has been fired, suspended, reprimanded, or even identified because their entitlement to a do-nothing VA job is more central to the VA’s real mission than the VA’s ostensible mission to care for vets.

When Guns are Outlawed, Only Outlaws Will Have Roller Coasters

roller_coasters_by_lilac_the_fox99-d3a06bpThe last thing that passed through his mind seems to have been a roller coaster gondola, at approximately 57 miles per hour. Previous to that, what passed through his mind was some version of, “The hell with these ‘restricted area’ signs! I’m going in after my cell phone.”

No word on whether he had recovered the phone and started texting before the coaster clocked him.

Police say James A. Young had just finished riding the Raptor and jumped over a fence to retrieve something he dropped during the ride. The Erie County coroner says it was his cellphone.

Sandusky police say Young was struck by the ride or someone on it. No one else was hurt.

via Man hit by roller coaster while looking for lost phone.

It seems that this guy was a public school teacher. No wonder Johnny can’t read.

Friday Tour d’Horizon Week 33

We’ll cover the usual subjects: Guns, Usage and Employment, Cops ‘n’ Crims, Unconventional (and current) Warfare, and Lord Love a Duck!

Guns

We really wanted to write more about these gun stories. So many guns, so few fingers….

Industry On The Move

ITEM: Kahr Firearms, which is relocating HQ out of gun-manufacturing-hostile New York State to first-day-of-deer-season’s-a-holiday Pennsylvania, opened its new Greely, PA HQ with a splashy celebration. Administrative personnel are already in place, R&D and engineering are next. Kahr’s manufacturing plant in Worcester, Massachusetts, where Auto-Ordnance guns like the classic Thompson are made, may be the next to relocate as the new plant continues to grow. (Kahr also has manufacturing facilities in Minnesota).

ITEM: Meanwhile, Gannett’s USA Today has written another dishonest article lamenting the demise of the firearms industry, even as they note the assortative relocation from anti-gun (and coincidentally anti-business) domiciles like Connecticut, New York, Maryland and Massachusetts towards more welcoming climes. We’ve been working on an analysis about these frequent Industrial Death stories, which we thought we’d tease with these two charts. They are based entirely on official ATF data and contain the most current information released to date.

Firearms New Supply (Net), 1986-2013. This is pretty self-explanatory.

Firearms Net Deliveries 1986-2013. Data from BATFE. Chart ©2015 WeaponsMan.com. Permission to use granted, with credit and link.

Firearms Net Deliveries to US Customers 1986-2013. Data from BATFE. Chart ©2015 WeaponsMan.com. Permission to use granted, with credit and link.

Firearms Made in America, 1986-2013. This is a stacked line chart; each line accounts only for the difference between it and the line below; the uppermost line, then, is the total. The delta between manufacturing and net deliveries (i.e between this chart and the chart above) is plus imports, minus exports.

Firearms Made in America 1986-2013. Data from BATFE. Chart ©2015 WeaponsMan.com. Permission to use granted, with credit and link.

Firearms Made in America 1986-2013. Data from BATFE. Chart ©2015 WeaponsMan.com. Permission to use granted, with credit and link.

Boy howdy, McPaper is right, it must really suck to be a gun maker, eh?

Note that McPaper’s Karl Gelles contributes two deliberately misleading charts to the article. One minimizes the market’s size and growth by excluding imports and stopping in 2012; even though the 2013 was as available to Gelles as it is to us, he chose to exclude it to support the reporter, Kevin Johnson’s, false story of industry collapse. The second, even more fraudulent chart, shows “declining sales” by cherry-picking data from peak season to its summer doldrums. What’s next? A chart that shows snowmobile sales declining here in NH because dealers moved more of the machines last November than last month, which was freakin’ July? And blaming it on Global Warming? (Michael “Piltdown” Mann was not available for comment).

Do You Read Polish?

If you don’t, you’re dumber than the Polack who finished last in his class. (We read Polish, but probably not as well as he does). If you do, you don’t need this Google Translation of an article on the Polish Blyskawica (Lightning) underground-manufactured SMG. There are some screwy translations, like the computer keeps trying to translate men’s proper names. But there are also two very good things — links to othet Polish Wikipedia content about the Home Army that is not widely available in English, and some good-sounding Polish books on underground arms in the references.

Anybody know a good Polish bookstore that ships to the USA? We buy German and French books from amazon.de/.fr, but don’t think there’s an amazon.pl.

Gone Before We Knew It

We’d never heard of a Tumblr blog on improvised weapons called DIY Self Defence until chuck at GunLab mentioned that it had vanished. Some parts of it were archived at web.archive.org like this and this, but only a few pages were scanned on only two days during its existence. What a pity!

Not a Gun, Exactly

Let’s continue our exploration of war in inner space! This documentary tells the story of three U-Boat wrecks recently found off the coast of Cornwall (the southwestern end of England). The investigators begin with two research questions: what is the identity of each of these boats — and what sank them?

By matching fate-unknown boats to the visible evidence of type (VII) and details of Schnorkel construction, historians identify the three boats. But none of them were where they had historically been belived to have been sunk. So the historians and researchers persist, and answer the question: what killed these boats (and their crews). It combines a prosaic weapon with a secret employment method that was declassified only recently — and that was a brutal, cold stratagem.

Usage and Employment

The hardware takes you only half way.

This FOOM was Probably an Accident — but what a FOOM it was

This is starting to look like the mother of all safety violations:Binhai Tientsin ExplosionsA series of explosions rocked the Chinese industrial/port city of Tienjin (Tientsin in the old Wade-Giles transcription system), destroying buildings and hundreds of new cars waiting to be loaded on ships. The cause of the disaster is unknown, and the death count stands at 44. More photos at the link. Condolences to the victims. Could this happen here? How can you prepare for something like this?

“Why do you need a gun in a national park?”

Well, you could ask the off-duty park ranger whose Ursus-induced mortality in Yellowstone National Park was the subject of a story this week, but you’d have to cross the River Styx to interview him. As seemed probable at the time of the story, the Ursus horribilis female that ate part of him (and cached the rest to ripen a bit) has since joined him on Chiron’s ferry. Her two orphaned cubs were sentenced to life behind bars, to wit, in zoos.

Hell, yes, you need a gun in a national park.

Mystery SMG, Probably Croatian

This clandestinely produced firearm is covered at some length, with lots of good photos, in The Firearm Blog. It is unusually well-built and sophisticated for a clandestine firearm, and has false, misleading markings obscuring its actual origins.

Suppressed Mystery 9mm

The mystery sub has turned up all across Europe, but it seems to originate in Croatia.

R9ARMSPISTOL1

Whoever made it, it absolutely wasn’t “R9 Arms, USA.”

Cops ‘n’ Crims

Cops bein’ cops, crims bein’ crims. The endless Tom and Jerry show of crime and (sometimes instantaneous) punishment.

Cops continue backing off on enforcement

With predictable results. A Birmingham, AL, detective was pistol-whipped into the ICU by a felon he’d traffic stopped. He said “he didn’t want to be in the media” for shooting a black man, so he hesitated.

And they long ago backed off border enforcement

A big-wheel politician is castigating the administration for pulling ICE off immigration enforcement. Good luck with that; Democans love criminal aliens because they’re potential voters, and anybody they kill votes Democrat for the next fifty years anyway; and Republicrats love them because they’re potential el cheapo labor, and anybody they kill probably wouldn’t get off their lawn. Meanwhile, the sweet innocents of DREAM Act non-enforcement of laws keep stacking up bodies, and what is ICE doing? They’ve given the special agents who aren’t going to be chasing amnestied criminal alien murders a choice of what crap detail they want to do: you can go be a warm body for the Federal Air Marshals Service, which is under so much pressure they’re capping themselves or quitting in quantity, or you can go be a war body for the Secret Service, and carry luggage for political candidates who won’t even tip you. Decisions, decisions.

K9 Lives Matter

End of watch, Wix. You were a good boy.

End of watch, Wix. You were a good boy.

Apparently, the same cops who would cheerfully lug you for leaving your canine buddy in the car have been doing the same thing — to the detriment of their partners.

The K-9 named Wix was a 3-year-old male Belgian Malinois trained in explosives detection and tracking. Wix and his handler, Brown County Deputy Austin Lemberger, were assisting with security at the [PGA Championship golf] tournament, and the dog was left in the squad car with the engine and air conditioner running.
The sheriff’s office says Lemberger checked on Wix regularly Wednesday morning. But he found the dog unresponsive around 12:30 p.m. The air conditioner had failed and the car’s K-9 heat alarm did not activate.
The Green Bay Press-Gazette reports that Wix was the fifth police dog to die in a hot car across the country this summer.

What kind of cop works an overtime detail and leaves his K9 in the car? And is anybody else surprised that the late, lamented Wix is the fifth police dog to die like, well, like a dog, in the last few months? We know how attached handlers get to their dogs, and Lemberger has to be kicking himself, but this feels all kinds of wrong.

Animal Rights Rioter Rassles… Poorly

This chucklehead in the colored wig is some PETA / Animal Liberation Front extremist trying to rescue the porker from a Pig-Wrestling contest at a state fair. He fails.

Never wrestle with a pig wrestler, especially if you’re a skinny, weak vegan. You just get muddy (and beaten up), and the pig wrestler enjoys it.

Unconventional (and current) Warfare

What goes on in the battlezones of the world — and preparation of the future battlefields

Another Islamic Sacrament

Joining murder in the panoply of ways to please Allah is child rape, at least, as ISIL grunts understand their own religion. Here’s an outraged Robert Spencer responding to a creeped-out and confused New York Times. The Times:

before he raped the 12-year-old girl, the Islamic State fighter took the time to explain that what he was about to do was not a sin. Because the preteen girl practiced a religion other than Islam, the Quran not only gave him the right to rape her — it condoned and encouraged it, he insisted.

The Times even managed to find an American professor of Islamic Studies, Kecia Ali of Boston University, who approves of child-slave rape as a Koranic form of worship. But hey, President Obama, who says he’s not islamic, says the Islamic State isn’t islamic either. Who would know better than he?

China Investigates Floating Fortresses

Apparently, the idea is to build a sort of updated Mulberry harbor floating at sea that can be an air and sea base, etc. It’s the sort of extreme engineering that the confident Chinese seem to enjoy these days. Our best guess is that Chinese hackers got a copy of the first-gen Tom Swift book, Tom Swift and his Ocean Airport, and mistook it for a DOD master plan that needed copying.

God help us when the hackers bring back science fiction books. Red China + Ringworld = probable international crisis.

Gas!

The Islamic State appears to have used chemical mortars firing a blister agent (some form of mustard gas) against Kurdish positions. They may have gotten the chemicals when they seized a previously secured Iraqi chemical plant where chemical weapons were made during the Iran-Iraq war. ISIL is also believed to possess Sarin, a nerve gas.

A loosely-related GWOT plug

This is as good a place as any to call your attention to a proposed business on Kickstarter with the highly amusing name Aloha Snackbar. They have some good BBQ pork recipies, which is as displeasing to mohammed as diddling kids is pleasing to him. Yes, the owner’s a vet (Marine).

It’s Tough Being a Traitor

Bradley Manning Support NetworkTrue, John André got a harsher sentence and was, by all accounts, a better human being, but traitor and confused person Bradley Manning wants you all to know that he-she-it’s got it really rough. After violating a bunch of prison rules, ickle Bradwey is back in solitary. Awwwwww. (And it’s a tough break for the rest of the cell block, too… how often do you get a cellie who’s weak, petite, and wants to be the girl?) And Bwadwey wants you all to help him proclaim that it’s not faaaaaiiiir. 

Lord Love a Duck!

The weird and wonderful (or creepy) that we didn’t otherwise get to.

No Matter How Crazy You Are, Somebody is Crazier

So, shaking your head over the crazy cat lady, Whatsername, with 122 cats in a litterbox of a house in Pennsylvania? Meet the crazy croc guy who had even more adult crocodiles and alligators in his house in Toronto. Unfortunately, no single person attended both crime scenes to tell us which smelled worse, but we’d guess the house full of mechanized handbags and cowboy boots, over the one full of self-propelled Chinese buffet.

It’s a rare week when Florida gets out-crazied and out-gatored by both Pennsylvania and usually-dull Canuckistan. Both the cats and the gators are on their way to (separate, fortunately for the cats) new homes.

Anti-Gun Pols do the Strangest Things

Here, Colorado’s John Hickenlooper, architect of the state’s modern-sporting-firearm and standard-cap magazine ban, drinks water from a polluted river. CBS being CBS, they blame the pollution on fracking and you have to read deep into the story to see that the EPA, not industry, dumped the water. Of course, there have been no consequences for anyone at EPA. A government job means never having to say you’re sorry.

And we mean to write about Pennsylvania’s extremely anti-gun Attorney General, Kathleen Kane, who is now under indictment for political corruption in connection with several criminal cases she tried to terminate because they were against her political allies — and with a long and convoluted (and miserably ineffective) attempt at covering up her crime in that. We probably will write about her this week, but if you want some schadenfreude on the pol who’s been fighting to strip the Keystone State out of handgun reciprocity (while making the state safe for bribe-taking politicians!), grab Google, put away any beverage you don’t want in your sinuses or on your keyboard and screen, and knock yourself out.

Some Things, Only Government Can Do

If we read the story right, researchers were trying to study brain damage in mice and whatever they did made the mice smarter. Could anything but a branch of government pull that off?

All hail our new rodent overlords! (They could scarcely be worse than the human ones we’ve got now and are likely to get).

When Guns are Outlawed, Only Outlaws Will Have Grizzlies

AngrybearThe same animal lovers wigging out over Cecil the late lion are now about to flip their loosely fitted wigs over a yet-to-undergo-anthropomorhosis grizzly sow (scientific name: the entirely fitting Ursus horribilis), who’s about to get the ursine version of the death penalty.

Worse, from the point of view of critter huggers everywhere, Mama Bear’s cubs are likely to follow her on that Last Mile.

It’s because she’s black, we know (well, technically, brown).

Wildlife biologists captured the bear over the weekend using a bear trap, Julena Campbell, a Yellowstone spokeswoman, told The Washington Post on Monday. Campbell said investigators are now trying to determine whether the female grizzly was involved in the fatal attack by comparing DNA samples and paw tracks to those taken from the scene and looking for signs of human remains in the animal’s waste.

If the evidence points to a match, Campbell said, the bear will be euthanized. If that happens and park officials are unable to find a home for the bear’s two cubs — one has been captured, the other remains in the wild — both animals will also be euthanized.

We can see the protest signs now. BEAR LIVES MATTER! and MAMA BEAR DINDU NUFFIN.

“Fortunately, these kind of incidents don’t happen that often,” Campbell said. “There’s not a lot of evidence to show that it is necessarily a learned behavior, but it can be. We know they are creatures of habit and that bears get habituated pretty quickly when they learn something is a food source.”

She added: “We have 3.5 million people coming to Yellowstone each year and risking those lives is not a chance we’re willing to take.”

[Video shows Yellowstone tourists running from a charging black bear]

The victim, identified Monday as 63-year-old Lance Crosby from Billings, Mont., was described as an “experienced hiker” who had lived and worked in the park for five seasons, a National Park Service statement said. A park ranger found him “partially consumed” a half-mile from the Elephant Back Loop Trail in a “popular off-trail area he was known to frequent,” the statement said.

Although the exact cause of Crosby’s death is under investigation, the his body had defensive wounds on his forearms, the statement said.

via Grizzly suspected of killing Yellowstone hiker will likely be euthanized with cubs – The Washington Post.

“The exact cause of Crosby’s death is under investigation.” Translation: “We’re not sure if it was griz claws or griz teeth.”

Mother Nature, of course, long ago exercised Her right to arm bears — with both of those terrible weapons.

Stand by for wailing, gnashing of teeth, and rending of garments from the usual suspects as word of this imminent bruinicide gets out.

One is reminded of Chesterton’s aphorism, on everyone’s lips since Cecil ascended bodily into Kingdom Come , that “Wherever you find worship of animals, you also find human sacrifice.” (According to the American Chesterton Society web site, the correct quote is the even more distilled, “Wherever there is animal worship there is human sacrifice,” and it comes from the first in his 1921 collection of essays, The Uses of Diversity. (He didn’t mean that last word in the sense it’s used today, as a justification for racialist percentage-balancing).

The Defense Distributed Court Case

Defense DistributedSome months now, the case is been proceeding through the courts. It features the very small open-source firm, Defense Distributed, against the very large United States Government. In a free speech case that closely parallels the de facto repeal of the 1st Amendment sought by State Department functionaries under the ITAR laws, DD is fighting to be able to release its software on the Internet.

A nearly complete archive of filings in the case is found on the Defense Distriuted website, here:

https://defdist.org/ddvus/

We’re not lawyers and can’t analyze these filings the way lawyers could, but we thought that DD had convincing arguments that their files constitute protected speech in a 1st Amendment sense, and most of all that their speech does not threaten national security or implicate foreign policy in any way. Meanwhile, we thought it interesting that the Defendants (State, et. al.) did not reply substantively to most of the plaintiffs’ assertions, and when they did, either deliberately or erroneously represented what the files in question do.

One thing we can analyze is the Declaration of Lisa Aguirre, a career DC political bureaucrat, with no visible technical background. Aguirre asserts that any technical information that can be used to produce a “defense article” (a term of art for some weapon controlled under ITAR) is technical information controlled under ITAR. This is a remarkable power grab, coming from someone who rejects the Constitution she swore an oath to, and worshipping power alone for its own sake.

By her fuzzy reasoning (presumably she’s either an attorney or a campaign contributor, the sort of qualifications that get people like Aguirre jobs beyond their ability and integrity), the files on your pegboard and the knowledge to operate them are the same thing as a machine gun. Or a nuclear detonator.

In a brief email exchange with DD’s Cody R. Wilson, we asked the law-student turned civil liberties activist to be an entrepreneur, and an entrepreneur to be a civil liberties activist, what we could do to help. (He has some very good lawyers on the case, and he needs them; unlike the State Department, he has to pay for them himself). Here’s his reply:

Your purchase of our machine was the help. Our profits go right to the lawyers. Spread the word, I suppose. Promote the GG so we can stay in the saddle.

The GGs are still shipping to people who preordered them (our order dates to 11/14 and still hasn’t hit the loading dock, although it’s supposed to Real Soon Now).  It’s possible that people are fence-sitting because they fear State will succeed in crushing Defense Distributed, or because they fear they will not receive a machine if they ordered one now. Remember, if you throw in here, you not only pay for the machine, but also for the activism that is necessary to keep it, and every other gunmaking tool you own, useful.

We can’t promise you that DD isn’t going to ghost on us. We can’t promise that Lisa Aguirre and her army of liberty-loathing losers won’t crush these Texas upstarts. We can’t promise that this David will slay this Goliath. But we can promise you that the fight is worthwhile, and ask those of you who can afford it ($1500) to join us.

And if you can’t? You can always read the legal filings, and figure out which side has your best interests at heart.

You Can Dictate the Result if you Run the Test

In this remarkable video, West Point instructor then-LTC Art Alphin, USAR, conducts a test of the practical combat accuracy of the M14, M16A1 and AK-47, and proves conclusively that the M14 is vastly superior to the weak AK and M16. How does he get that result? Watch first, then we’ll tell you.

Frankly, Cinderella got more of a fair shake from her gnarly stepsisters than the 16 and AK get in this pathetic presentation. How does he slant the test? Let us count the ways.

  1. First, the only test is gravel-belly, on-range marksmanship. Not, say, marksmanship after carrying the rifle, ammo, and 90 other pounds of lightweight gear up and down draws and around hillside contours for a couple of days.
  2. Rifles are examined as a single thing, not in the context of a unit, even though Alphin spends much of his lecture discussing that context.
  3. The M14 gets Alphin, who is an excellent shot (we thought he was a Distinguished Marksman but he turned out not to be, on checking). Conversely, the M16 and AK get mooks. The M16 guy flinches with every shot.
  4. Alphin fires the M14 from the sitting and prone supported position with the sling. He has his junior officers (the mooks who can’t shoot) fire the AK and M16 from offhand and prone unsupported. Can it get more slanted than that? Well, yeah, it can.
  5. And, of course, he has the guys with the modern rifles fire on auto, and in long bursts — at 330 yards, 5-round bursts from the offhand position. (If Alphin trained these guys, he sucks as a trainer).

That may not have been all of it. As the M14 lacks an auto-switch (a thoroughly useless thing on that rifle) it may be an M1A, or it may be a National Match gun. Sure, that would be cheating, but why wouldn’t he, seeing what he’s done already?

This “test” proves nothing except that you can set up a test to fool the ignorant — Alphin’s targets seem to have been Military Academy Cadets, the poor wretches — although it’s going to be glaringly wrong to any informed person watching it. As Sturgeon (to whose forum someone sent us to see this) said,

A gravelbelley LtC sets up a Totally Fair and Unbiased™ test between an AK, an M16, and an M14.

He had to have known that forcing the M16 and AK to shoot full automatic, and without a sling, would cause this result, even if they were compared with the same weapons shooting on single shot with a sling. Unless there’s some historical context I’m missing, I can only conclude that he was an M14 fanboy who was blind to his own biases.

I wonder what he’d say had he been present when I made repeated hits with a 16″ barreled AR carbine at 900 yards

Well, he does damn the A2 with fain praise at the end of his presentation, which is circa 1984 and thus pre-widespread-A2-issue. But by then the M14 was a dead letter. Nobody remembers what a pain in the arse it was to produce. Nobody remembers how the AK and M16 have been adopted by most of the surface of the planet, while the only country that took a chance on the M14 was Taiwan. Nobody remembers how all the nations of the world have, over the last 65 years, gone to SCHV weapons, and none has changed back. None.

Nobody remembers the 12 years of fitful development and staggering sums of money that went into the M14 project, which produced a longer, bulkier and more awkward version of the well-proven M1, with the only feature changes of note being:

  1. a 20-round box magazine;
  2. a gas system closer to that of the M1 Carbine, conceptually;
  3. an utterly useless full-auto capability;
  4. a roller in the op-rod/bolt interface.

Now, you could run a test designed to hose the M14 at the expense of the smaller guns, easily.

Here’s the course of fire:

  1. Walk 32km/12 miles with your rifle and ~3000 rounds of ammunition in cans. Engage targets at 75 m immediately after crossing the finish line.
  2. Get into an APC like a Bradley or 113 with five other guys. They close the ramp behind you. And toss in a CS grenade.
  3. Exit through the driver’s hatch only. Don’t forget your rifle. Engage targets immediately.
  4. Fire and maneuver up a steep hill. Engage targets of opportunity.
  5. Take a position behind HESCO barriers. Engage the driver of a suspected VBIED. Engage a human wave attack.

We’re pretty sure the M14 is still back in the smoking APC.