Category Archives: Lord Love a Duck

About that Keene, NH Bearcat

This is Keene's Bearcat. There are many like it, but this one is Keene's. Without its Bearcat, Keene is useless. Without Keene, the Bearcat is useless...

This is Keene’s Bearcat. There are many like it, but this one is Keene’s. Without its Bearcat, Keene is useless. Without Keene, the Bearcat is useless…

Keene, New Hampshire, is a sleepy college town, left-leaning as NH goes, and the subject of a great outcry two years ago because the police purchased (or rather, had your Federal taxes buy, so maybe “requisitioned”) a Lenco Bearcat armored personnel carrier. We were part of that outcry.

Keene’s justification for the vehicle was that they needed it to defend large gatherings, like the Pumpkin Festival.

This made the entire town the laughingstock of the Western World, and parts of the Old World stretching back to the furthest conquests of Alexander the Great (we concluded, “Somewhere in North Waziristan, Gulbuddin Hekmatayar is laughing his ass off at us.” back in 2012).

Before we bring the story up to date, note that a large number of the inmates of Keene are college students at Keene State, the designated Party School of the NH System. That helps to explain What Happened Next.

So how do the people of Keene demonstrate how the police in their leafy burb don’t need any riot control vehicle? By rioting, naturally.

At the freaking Pumpkin Festival.

We are Not Making This Up®. We’d be ready to go back to that 2012 post and eat our pixels, but…

We just got done talking to a Keene cop, and they used all their resources to control the riot, except one. Which one? You got it: the Bearcat.

A perfect chance to grind patchouli-scented hippies (not to mention drunks in their fourth sophomore year) under the Bearcat’s run-flat tires, and they go all restraint, like. Lord love a duck.

Somewhere in North Waziristan, Gulbuddin Hekmatayar is laughing his ass off at us.

(Not Making This Up® is a registered trademark of Dave Barry. Used without permission -Ed).

 

Imura-san gets the shaft — two years’ imprisonment

3D imuras guns

Imura’s printed guns, seized along with his computers and printer when he was arrested.

Japanese 3D-printing gun activist Yoshitomo Imura was convicted and sentenced to 2 years in prison for printing guns.

The Yokohama District Court handed down the sentence to Yoshitomo Imura, a 28-year-old former employee of Shonan Institute of Technology who made a number of guns with a 3D printer in his home in Kawasaki outside Tokyo last year.

Imura was arrested in May on a charge of illegal weapons possession in what media reports described as Japan’s first such case involving 3D-printed firearms.

In a very Japanese ruling, the judge seemed as upset with Imura-san’s nonconformity as he was with the guns, and condemned Imura for “flaunting his knowledge and skill”:

“This has shown that anyone can illegally manufacture guns with a 3D printer, flaunting their knowledge and skill, and it is an offense to make our country’s strict gun controls into a dead letter,” public broadcaster NHK quoted judge Koji Inaba as saying in the ruling on Monday.

Prosecutors had demanded a prison term of three and a half years for Imura. Defense lawyer Akira Noguchi had argued that Imura did not know his acts were illegal. After the ruling, he said that an appeal had not been decided upon yet.

via 3D-printed gun maker draws jail term in Japan | PCWorld.

Imura's Zig-Zag Revolver. He only fired it with blanks, but that didn't keep him out of durance vile.

Imura’s Zig-Zag Revolver. He only fired it with blanks, but that didn’t keep him out of durance vile.

Despite the legal findings, our information is that Imura designed and manufactured his “guns” to fire only blanks, which are available in Japan in calibers and cartridges that have no commonality with any live ammunition, like the 8mm blanks popular in Europe.

Mind you, we understand why Japanese officialdom gets upset when the subjects start “flaunting their knowledge and skill.” The last time somebody tried that, his name was Isoroku Yamamoto and he wound up getting their country nuked.

Shotgun Stolen: Situation Strange

A Luciano Bosis 'Michelangelo' 12-bore shotgun (not the stolen gun, every Bosis is unique). From the Bosis website.

Look at that case color! A Luciano Bosis ‘Michelangelo’ 12-bore shotgun (not the stolen gun, every Bosis is unique). From the Bosis website. Click to embiggen. 

This one is just damned difficult to figure out. Let’s just leap into the lede from the Burlington (VT) Times-Argus:

A man arrested this week in Boston is expected to be arraigned next week on a charge that he stole a shotgun valued at $89,000 from the Covey and Nye store on Main Street last month.

David Goldberg, 58, is expected to be arraigned Tuesday in Bennington criminal court on a felony count of grand larceny, State’s Attorney Erica Marthage said Friday.

A police affidavit in the case was written before Goldberg was arrested. It is unclear whether the shotgun was recovered.

Now, the case is going to get weirder, but even in Ben and Jerrystan, casual shoplifters don’t usually make off with long guns valued at more than half the average house in Bennington. Also, one hates to stereotype, but when was the last time your city had a shoplifter or other small-time crook named “Goldberg”? It’s just one more oddity around this case. Then, there’s the way the case was broken:

The shotgun that had been at the Manchester store was made by Luciano Bosis, an Italian artisan who specializes in high-end guns often used for bird hunting or clay target shooting.

Police said media coverage of the theft and tips that came from people who had seen the coverage led them to Goldberg.

Officer Abigail Zimmer of the Manchester Police Department said in an affidavit the theft was reported Sept. 18.

After conversations with several employees, Zimmer said, she believed two men had come into the store Sept. 17 with a large Great Dane dog and left driving a black Ford Focus. One employee said the men were acting strangely.

Zimmer sent out a news release Sept. 18 and by the next day got a tip from a woman who said she recognized the description of the men because of the dog and the vehicle.

Cowboy the Great Dane -- his unwitting participation in the shotgun heist was the theives' undoing.

Cowboy the Great Dane — his unwitting participation in the shotgun heist was the theives’ undoing.

The dog turned out to belong to a guy named David Paul, who has a brother named Peter Paul — a twin brother.  (That’s two identical twins sharing three first names, without a last name between ‘em. We told you it was going to get weirder).

But criminals never commit just one crime, and this two-boys-and-their-dog crime wave also hit a store that had a video camera:

Another tip came from an employee of a Bradford store. The employee called Zimmer on Sept. 19 to say two men matching the description from the website and driving a black Ford had been at the Bradford store Sept. 16.

The employee said he believed one or both of the men had stolen a pair of shoes worth $145.

Store surveillance photos showed the men and Zimmer said one showed a Great Dane.

The Great Dane, Cowboy, turned out to be featured extensively online, and the dog led to his master, David Paul — and one of the guys on the surveillance footage was either David or his twin brother. With enough information to think that one of the Paul twins and their yet-unidentified friend were up to no good, Officer Zimmer went to the logical place where she might find the stolen shotgun and shoes:

Police executed a search warrant at the Randolph home of Peter Paul, where his brother David Paul was staying, on Sept. 25. Zimmer said the shotgun was not recovered but police were able to interview David Paul.

No word on the shoes. The only open question: did David Paul throw his brother or Goldberg under the bus? Well, what’s that saying about “honor among thieves?”

Zimmer said David Paul told them he and Goldberg had been at the store Sept. 17 but denied any direct knowledge of the theft.

“(David Paul) stated that Goldberg’s behavior in the gun shop and immediately after made him think that Goldberg had stolen something,” Zimmer said.

“David Paul stated that he was very angry with Goldberg if he had indeed stolen the shotgun.”

Translation, he was very angry that he was at risk of getting caught. Seriously, you go into a store with someone and don’t notice that he shoplifts a shotgun? 

Criminal Mastermind Professor Moriarty these guys are not. What kind of genius takes, not just a dog, but a Great Freakin’ Dane on a pilfering patrol? And where’s the shotgun? Well, the trail led ever onward:

A neighbor in Randolph said he had taken Goldberg to catch a bus in New Hampshire around that time and said Goldberg had a bag “which appeared to have a tennis racket inside it.”

We don’t know if the gun was recovered or not. With the sort of genius Goldberg seems to be, he probably fenced the $90k shotgun for $20 to some crack head, and it will turn up sawzalled into a zip gun on some felon’s cooling body after a drive-by. But even if the story were to end where it is today, we think it’s the weirdest stolen-gun story of the year. Industrial-strength weird.

Hat tip, Jeff Soyer, who adds in the comments on his site:

[T]he funniest part of this incident doesn’t appear in the article, but did in the initial report of the theft last month (which is behind a paywall): Police had a description of the car, AND the license plate number. They asked the public to come forward with any information they might have… Because the license plate number wasn’t enough?

Eh. Crime in New England is a little… different. Wait till about four months of snow shoveling have got everybody’s nerves frayed.

Hagel to the Blind: Here’s a Poke in the Eye with a Sharp Stick

Jules_Bastien-Lepage_The_Blind_BeggarWhen he isn’t refocusing the military on Global Warming, diapering babies on the border, getting exposed to Ebola in the hot zone, and the Global War on Smoking, Chuck Hagel is overthrowing all the military traditions he can: like blind-made products. In the limited time he can spare from that, he’s losing a couple of wars.

Now, we used to joke about light fixtures made by Lighthouse for the Blind, and those black ink pens made by Skilcraft Quality Blind Made Products that worked about half the time (“What do you expect? The final inspection is done by a blind guy!”) but these nonprofits provided stuff we used to need, and at the same time provided jobs to people who might otherwise be dependent on charity. Years after retirement, we still find the damned things around the Manor; on a polygraph exam, the examiners have learned to deal with an indication of deception on the question, “Have you ever stolen government property?” with a follow-up: “Except for a Skilcraft Quality Blind Made Products ink pen?”

But now, Lighthouse and Skilcraft have had one pipeline to Federal dollars cut off, because another group has a higher priority than American disabled: Afghan and Pakistani businesses, and the group that represents them, a shadowy and secretive outfit called TWI. How much of the money now sticks to TWI on the way to the Afghans and Pakistanis who are judged more deserving than American disabled workers is unknown, or who’s behind TWI, but one might be forgiven for suspecting that a worldwide search was conducted among the unemployed nephews of Defense Senior Executive Service employees. Because that’s how Washington insiders roll.

One might incline to blame Congress, but oddly enough, Congress isn’t behind this particular boondoggle, it’s an all-Executive-branch  show.

Congress was behind the original program of preferences for the disabled, which dates to 1938 and the Wagner-O’Day act.

More information can be found if you google, “Feds take jobs from disabled Americans, send them to Central Asia.” We don’t link to that site (Washington Times) any more because every page is so heavily loaded with autoplay spam and pop-up advertisements, but if you want to go there, it’s your funeral.

Some Columbus Day Thoughts

ColumbusThe celebration of Christopher Columbus has become, in the last twenty to thirty years, overrun with various ill-educated but loud products of university “grievance studies” programs. Some of these are aggrieved descendants of Indians. Others (Ward Churchill springs to mind) are phony Indians and phony scholars. All of them disparage a man whose contribution to American greatness was itself greater, by any reasonable measure, than all the contributions of all the indigenous neolithic tribesmen.

Neolithic. Meaning, “Stone Age.” Stop and think of that, for a moment. Before the landing of Columbus, no one in the new world had:

  1. metals (not even copper or bronze);
  2. the wheel;
  3. the sail (let alone the keel or centerboard);
  4. the compass;
  5. the ability to build permanent structures of concrete or stone (two empires, the Inca and Maya, were exceptions);
  6. permanent agricultural settlements;
  7. nails, screws or other permanent fasteners;
  8. the winch or windlass;
  9. seagoing ships;
  10. gunpowder or firearms;
  11. fortifications beyond a wooden palisade, and siege machines of any kind;
  12. wagons, treadmills, or other ways to exploit beasts of burden beyond simply loading them up as onesies;
  13. saddles or stirrups;
  14. artificial dams.

We could motor on down this road for another 100 miles, but the fact is that the Indians of North America were primitive tribal societies. They were living in the Stone Age, something that Europe, Asia and North Africa had left behind thousands of years earlier. The Vikings, who in 1000 AD struck most of Europe as savages, were miles beyond the most sophisticated of the Indians in world knowledge, technological mastery, and social organization.

The Europeans then knew "savage." They'd been there, done that.

The Europeans then knew “savage.” They’d been there, done that — as Neanderthals.

When the Europeans called the Indians “savages,” they weren’t being judgmental. They were being observant. 

Columbus, for his part, saddled up a small fleet and set forth into the unknown, at great risk to his person. He ultimately made four voyages of discovery. Others may have preceded him, without making waves on their return, but it was his journeys that opened the New World for colonization — and therefore, to progress.

These are deprecated ideas in the modern academy. As a result, bullshit about old Colombo is everywhere, from Smithsonian displays to the tendentious crap in Wikipedia. Your only hope is to find pre-Vietnam-era biographies of the great Admiral (Morison’s is fantastic), or perhaps an old encyclopedia. Hell, the old Hollywood movie with Frederic March is better than today’s academicrap, and it’s a typical Hollywood movie. .

Remember, the Star Fleet Prime Directive is bullshit — nobody thinks it’s better to be a neolithic savage, except for albino-pale academics who smell of musty books and have no calluses on their hands — who would be the first eaten in their imagined Utopia.

ISIL: No fun being right

The author of this piece in the Independent, Patrick Cockburn, is one of a family of Irish Communist journalists; while they all have had a kind word for Stalin, Brezhnev, or Andropov, who from time to time enriched them, none of them has ever had a kind word for the United States, and that familial hostility permeates Patrick Cockburn’s copious writings about Iraq, which tend to exemplify prose fellatio of Muqtada al-Sadr much the way he father performed the figurative act for Uncle Joe, back in the day.

Yet, even with the this-guy-hates-us-so-much-he’s-cheering-ISIL discount applied, it’s hard to disagree with what Cockburn is saying in this case:

In the face of a likely Isis victory at Kobani, senior US officials have been trying to explain away the failure to save the Syrian Kurds in the town, probably Isis’s toughest opponents in Syria. “Our focus in Syria is in degrading the capacity of [Isis] at its core to project power, to command itself, to sustain itself, to resource itself,” said US Deputy National Security Adviser Tony Blinken, in a typical piece of waffle designed to mask defeat. “The tragic reality is that in the course of doing that there are going to be places like Kobani where we may or may not be able to fight effectively.”

Unfortunately for the US, Kobani isn’t the only place air strikes are failing to stop Isis. In an offensive in Iraq launched on 2 October but little reported in the outside world, Isis has captured almost all the cities and towns it did not already hold in Anbar province, a vast area in western Iraq that makes up a quarter of the country. It has captured Hit, Kubaisa and Ramadi, the provincial capital, which it had long fought for. Other cities, towns and bases on or close to the Euphrates River west of Baghdad fell in a few days, often after little resistance by the Iraqi Army which showed itself to be as dysfunctional as in the past, even when backed by US air strikes.

via War against Isis: US strategy in tatters as militants march on – Comment – Voices – The Independent.

The failure, ultimately, is a failure of will: there is no will to win on the American side. Well, there is, but not at the policy-making level. Only at the policy-implementing level, where the people are wearing uniform collars, something that is never wrapped around the neck of anyone calling the shots in DC. (Well, except Chuck Hagel, who seems to be content playing Iscariot to the boys and girls in uniform. Or maybe that analogy is over the top, and who he’s playing is actually Macnamara. Which only puts Judas at one more remove, actually).

The many pale talents of the Obama “national security” team run together in our mind, so we  don’t remember whether Tony Blinken was the guy who was a speechwriting wunderkind, the guy who drove a campaign van, or the guy hired as a playmate for the Portuguese Water Dog. But whichever one he is, all he knows about Iraq is that he’s superior enough to be swollen with contempt for all you dumb clucks who went there.

Exercise for the reader: find the parvenu in strategic circles in World War II who is the most fitting analogue for Tony Blinken.

As far as ISIL’s ongoing victories in the face of the ineffective bombing being done with one eye on the media and one on the midterms (leaving none for the target, the enemy, or friendly forces), well, we predicted it but it isn’t fun being right in this case.

At Least We Built Afghan Capability Wisely, Right?

Er, wrong. The Special Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction (i.e., the “Poor Bastard who Has to Add Up All the Fraud, Waste and Abuse”) looked at our provision of about a half a billion dollars to buy Alenia G-222 aircraft for the Afghan Air Force to operate. So, the money was spent, the turboprop transports were delivered… and then they sat. For a couple years.

brand_new_g222s__sitting_in_november

These pictures were taken in November, 2013. Some of the planes were parked a little haphazardly, but none of them needed more than some spares and overdue scheduled and preventive maintenance. That’s what it would have taken to return these nearly new planes, worth some $25 million each, to the sky. (Corrosion, the dread slayer of sitting aircraft, is not much of a factor in arid Kabul).

g222s_parked_a_bit_haphazardly_but_reparable

Then, this year, they were scrapped. Well, 16 of the 20 were scrapped, on the QT. The USAF got 6¢ per ton for the metal; there are 4 more that survived just because they happened to be out of the country when this spate of vandalism took place. None of the planes had more than a hundred flight hours on it; many of them had flown fewer than 10 hours since delivery. The whole fleet flew a total of 234 hours in their one year in-country.

g222s_reduced_to_scrap

But the waste on the airplanes and engines and avionics and all that — on its way to be squashed into jingle trucks as scrap aluminum — is the least of it. There’s the human waste of the crews who were trained and didn’t fly, and the opportunity cost of the years spent stumbling down this rathole.

The Air Force canceled the G-222 support contract, grounding the planes, in hopes of getting the Afghans, who couldn’t maintain the G-222s, C-130s instead — at $40 million each. So it will cost over a billion dollars to replace the capability we just wasted six or so years and half a billion dollars on, and scrapped for 6¢ a pound. Assuming the winds don’t change in the Air Force, and they decide the Afghans should have C-17s with inlaid gold bars in the pilot seats or something like that.

Would You Be Shocked to Learn a “Bozo” is Behind This?

The official promoting the C-130 boondoggle currently is Undersecretary of Defense Christine Wormuth, as her signature shows:

wormuth_signature

Got it? They have almost one C-130H crew, so they need moar C-130s than the pair they’ve already got, which are mostly sitting like the doomed G-222s did.

And awwww…. she recycles. Fun fact: she almost wasn’t confirmed in this job, due to her poor performance at DHS. Senator John McCain (R-AZ) put a hold on her nomination because of her refusal to face the islamist threat, saying:

They can nominate any bozo they want, the way it is now. I mean, look at the ambassador nominees. People who have never been in the country are clueless who are now going to be made ambassadors.

So now we will see less and less qualified people nominated by the President of the United States.

Under the so-called “nuclear option,” McCain’s objections to the “less and less qualified” “any bozo” Wormuth were ultimately overruled on a party-line vote. And now, having failed upward, she’s blowing billions with boozy abandon.

But hey, that’s nothing new. Last year the SIGAR found another $800 million waste (.pdf) in other Afghan Air Force aid. The SIGAR website is packed to the gills with fraud and corruption (here are some cases, but skip around, it’s a target-saturated environment).

Are we sick of VA failures yet?

VA-veterans-affairsAre we sick of VA failures? What a silly question. Of course we are! We bet you are, too. Almost everybody is sick of VA failures… especially those poor bastards, VA patients.

The problem is, apparently, that the Department of Veterans Affairs and its legions of mismanagers are not, yet.

ITEM: Procurement + Corruption = Procurer

This is one where it takes time and patience to Read The Whole Thing™, but it rewards the effort. Basically, a VA senior executive, Susan Taylor, engaged in a decases-long conspiracy to defraud the government, in part by directing contracts to a company called FedBid, whose representative shared her bed during this period.

Then she lied about it. Under oath. A lot.

The story is a mulligatawny of sex, lies and boatloads of taxpayer money, so it makes for interesting reading, as IG reports go.

Of course, Susan Taylor was promptly fired – wait! No, she wasn’t. Well, at least she was suspended for a period. No, not exactly. But surely she lost her bonus? Received a written reprimand? Well, no. None of these things. After all, this is the VA! She, and her contractor pals, have faced… absolutely nothing, nothing at all. That’s how they roll in the VA. She’s still collecting her $200,000-plus in pay and benefits. And FedBid is still raking in the tax dollars, too. The VA is one hell of a good deal – for non-veteran DC insiders. For veterans, not so much.

There is a cameo appearance in the scandal by one veteran who diserves dishonorable mention: General George Casey. Casey’s former rank was used, apparently, to secure contracts for the shifty outfit, FedBid. If you can’t quite place Casey, he’s the former Army Chief of Staff who famously categorized the Fort Hood jihad attacks as “workplace violence,” condemned witnesses who reported Hasan’s allah akbars and shouts for jihad for “jumping to conclusions,” and spoke dismissively of the dead even as they lay unshriven in the morgue. The thing really at risk was his program of minority outreach: “As great a tragedy as this was, it would be a shame if our diversity became a casualty….”

Is it any surprise to see a man with such an abscessed moral center turn up, sticky-fingered, in a corruption probe?

ITEM: It’s Lousy in Louisana

Care

Cartoon from Watchdog.org, from one of their VA story pages.

At least it is, if you’re a poor vet incarcerated in the 111-bed Overton Brooks VAMC in Shreveport. If you are, you might be lying naked on a bare mattress. Because they did a dope deal with another VA hospital that’s over two highway hours away, they run out of linens all the time.

And the laundry knows they’re doing government work: the threadbare sheets and pajamas come back suspiciously smelly, and still containing the EKG electrodes from the last guy.

There’s no money for better laundry, officials say; there’s no money for stuff like toothpaste, either. It seems like they blew the money: TVs for a propaganda-message network, imported furniture, and, naturally, something between $3 million and $9 million worth of solar cells. The solar cells are meant to partly offset the environmental damage caused by driving across the state for the badly laundered bedclothes, and shipping desks thousands of miles from a foreign factory.

The VA’s individual contracts are wasteful, if not corrupt, also. The agency paid about $3k each for the 42-inch TVs. They deliver — we are not making this up — “the weather… and uplifting sayings from Michelle Obama.” The TVs came from an earmark for an “emergency information system.”

Tori Richards at Watchdog.org has been covering Overton Brooks. She broke the first story. She also covered an American Legion donation of $5,000 in emergency supplies to provide the linens and amenities (like toothpaste) the managers won’t.

But those responsible in Shreveport? Hey, nothing has happened to them. Except bonuses. Doing fine on bonuses, while the vets lie naked… that’s the VA in a nutshell.

ITEM: When is an ER not an ER?

It’s isn’t a trick question, there really is an answer: when is an ER not an ER? When it doesn’t have a doctor. That’s why the Fayetteville, NC lost its certification as an emergency department last month, as a contractor took the money but didn’t bother to, er, staff the depertment fully.

So they had to relabel the ED an “Urgent Care Center,” of which one word, “center,” might have a bit of truth. No one “cares” and there’s no “urgency.” The Fayetteville Observer:

Veterans who have received care from the Fayetteville VA emergency department in recent weeks have reported that there was no medical officer on duty and that the hospital has been short staffed.

Others reported long waits at the emergency department, caused in part by waits elsewhere in the medical center.

Veterans said they had been told to go to the emergency department while waiting for a primary care physician. Waits for such a doctor can take months, the longest of any VA in the nation, and veterans said there have been times where more than 50 patients have waited for care.

One veteran, Joseph Edwards, said he spent several hours in the emergency department earlier this month waiting for a doctor’s shift to start.

Nancy Edwards said nurses were turning many veterans away and telling many to return at 8 p.m., when a doctor would be on duty.

Blogger “Dr Whitecoat” has a comment or two:

If true, the Fayetteville VA Medical Center is violating federal EMTALA requirements. If a patient comes to an emergency department seeking medical care, the patient must receive a medical screening examination to determine whether an emergency medical condition exists.

I won’t hold my breath waiting for news of the investigation of these incidents.

No, not holding his breath is a good idea, or he’d be “Dr Blueface.”

So that’s progress: send ‘em to the ER, and when they get there, it’s not an ER and there’s no doctor. 

You might ask, if you were sleeping up to this point in this blog post, who has been held accountable for this failure. Consider us to have made a short, sharp snort in lieu of a laugh.

No VA employee in Fayetteville has needed to fear any loss of bonus, threat to job, or even tongue-lashing from a boss, of course, but there was something like consequences (mirabile dictu!) in that the contractor was replaced, effective 1 Oct 2014.

The ED’s still down.

One wonders what the discussion was like, but we’ve reconstructed it:

VA Manager Ian Faith: One more thing. The Fayetteville ED’s downgraded.

Dr. David St. Hubbins: What!

Ian Faith: I wouldn’t worry about it. Fayetteville’s not a big Army town.

Lord love a duck.

Exit question: what percentage of DVA employees are “employed” (if that’s the word) in HQ or otherwise in offices in the National Capital Area, or in other administrative offices such as regional or functional administrations, and not involved in direct patient care?

Pennsylvania State Police — the Hits Keep Coming

PSP SIG 227ITEM: News sources are reporting that the instructor who plugged David Kedra did it during mechanical training on the new SIG P227 pistols in the classroom. This is pretty much the definition of negligent homicide. Emphasis in the below quote is ours:

According to [State Police Commissioner Frank] Noonan, Kedra was shot in the chest during a training exercise at the Montgomery County Public Safety Training Complex on the 1100 block of Conshohocken Road around 4:45 p.m.

Sources say he was in a classroom for a demonstration of how to break down and clean his service weapon. They say an experienced state police firearms instructor was handling a gun that somehow misfired.

The bullet hit trooper Kedra in the chest.

via Funeral arrangements announced for fallen Pa. state trooper | 6abc.com.

Note the excusatory removal of human agency from the firing of the pistol, aka, “it just went off!” as the perp usually says. In this case, the “gun… somehow misfired.” The gun did not misfire. It fired just damned fine. The idiot instructor (1) applied ammunition to the gun, or took up a gun into which someone had introduced ammunition, and then (2) pulled the trigger.

On a class on disassembly of a weapon that was explicitly selected because, unlike the firearm it is replacing, it can be diassembled without touching the trigger.

Exercise for the reader: do this. See what you get charged with. See how it compares to what the Pennsylvania poltroon does not get charged with.

ITEM: State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan just received the porn emails, he didn’t send them. (Apparently there’s a major porn email scandal cleaning out the cabinet and senior lawyers’ offices of the PA state government). So he’s golden, right?

Gov Tom Corbett says Noonan:

…did not participate in opening, originating, forwarding or replying to any message…

But underlying this story is not all that it seems. PA Attorney General Kathleen Kane obtained the emails over a year ago, and held them until this October for campaign purposes. She is now providing them selectively to election campaigns and to media supporters of her party .

korrupt_kathleen_kaneKane is best known outside Pennsylvania as a 2nd Amendment opponent and criminals’ advocate who has worked to undermine licensed concealed carry in Pennsylvania, including revoking previously negotiated reciprocity agreements.

Kane has selectively released emails from the email accounts of former attorney general’s office staffers who were of the opposite party. She has not released any from her own party or supporters. Earlier this year, she spiked prosecution of members of her own party who took bribes in a sting operation.

Her attempt to include Noonan, who apparently never even looked at any of the emails (which have not been released; we have to take her word for it they contained “porn”), having failed, he can get back to the serious business of not finding fugitive Eric Frein.

And she can get back to the serious business of protecting every footpad and highwayman in Pennsylvania, and screwing over crime victims and concealed carriers.

Know your What-stop?

speeding bulletBullets, you know, have a life of their own. The life begins when the firing pin crushes the primer case and some of the impact-sensitive primer mixture against the primer anvil, and it ends when the spent bullet comes to rest.

In between, the bullet can get up to all kinds of mischief, like this one did. It’s almost like the seemingly-enchanted bullet in The Hole Book that we wrote about recently — through or past the target, through the window, off a refriger magnet, off a microwave oven… on and on and on, with, miraculously, no human casualties. South Carolina news station WSPA.com says:

The Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Office says a woman heard gunshots at her home on Murph Road in Pauline when the bullet broke the pane of glass around 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

The incident report states the .30 caliber bullet broke the glass, struck a magnetic clip under a cabinet in the kitchen and dented housing on a microwave oven. The bullet then dropped onto the toaster and bounced into a burner on the stove.

The homeowner believed the target shooting was happening on Walnut Grove Pauline Road.

The SCSO deputy states he went to a home on that street and found out a man’s son was target shooting with an AK-47 at an empty propane tank in the back yard. The man didn’t says he realize his bullet went to the neighbor’s house behind him.

via AK-47 Target Practice Bullet Hits Neighbor’s Home In Pauline – WSPA.com.

So, where did this Wile E Coyote Certified Genius™ think the bullet was going to go? There’s a reason everybody learns to consider his backstop, and what may be downrange beyond it: because it’s best safety practice. And there’s a reason that some people don’t do that: because some people are functionally brain-dead, even as they walk among us.

Fortunately, no one was injured, and, speaking well of the restraint of the Spartanburg County deputies, the shooter wasn’t shot, pistol-whipped, tased, or even charged, but we’d bet he got a good enough talking-to that he isn’t going to do that again.

Nossir, his next dumb stunt will be completely different. Well, that’s why we have deputies, to take those calls. Well done, SCSO, and best of luck next time. ‘Cause there will be a next time.