Category Archives: Lord Love a Duck

Be the Guy who Kicked Jesse Ventura’s Ass

Pred suit3No, not Chris Kyle. The other guy. Dude in Kirkwall, Scotland is selling a complete Predator suit for £4,800. We know some of you retired frogs working PSD have the money for the ultimate party suit.

If you don’t want to go to SEAL conventions and see Jesse leave by the back door, you could always stuff and mount it, in between your grizzly and lion mounts. From the ad:

Here I have an original Pete Mander AVP Predator suit, I am selling this as I really need the money for moving house.

The suit was fully custom made by Pete Mander and is unbelievably realistic, the suit is perfect down to the last detail.

The suit consists of (from the head down) :-

1- A set of latex and rubber dreadlocks.

2- Very real looking predator face mask.

3- The Scar & Celtic Biomasks.

4- Adjustable shoulder cannon.

5- 2x shoulder armour.

Pred suit4The ad, on the British sales website Gumtree, goes on and on in the sort of detail you’d expect from some cat in Scotland whose proudest possession is an $8,000 Predator costume. (What odds he works in the software industry?)

Technically, this is the later Predator from the movie AVP: Alien vs. Predator, but it’s definitely close enough for Hollywood. It’s got to be close enough to ruin Ventura’s day.

And you could probably make the money back PDQ in free drinks from frogmen.

Why MA is a Mess, Part 32,767

Here is a lineup of MA politicians at some worthless hack or other’s funeral:

LS_081010_LeLach_funeral_TEW

No word on whether the dead guy in the Caddy wagon was supposed to finger the one who took the money, from behind the one-way window. If so, he held to the Massachusetts politicians’ code: Omertà. They’re all here to be sure he took their secrets to the grave — or maybe, that he’s really dead and not in a safe house singing to the Feds.

It is an interesting lineup. Every one of them is a liberal Democrat, and an extreme anti-gunner. And they have a few other things in common:

  • Left: Salvatore F. “Slippery Sal” DiMasi, not a veteran (VN draft evader), former Speaker of the House (2004-2009), anti-gun politician, and convicted felon. Slippery Sal is currently BOP Inmate Number 27371-038 in the Butner, NC, Federal Correctional Institution, doing eight years for seven counts of corruption, scheduled for release in 2018, although he and his allies in the Party and the Boston Globe are campaigning for a pardon or commutation.
  • 2nd from Left: Thomas M. “Felon” Finneran, not a veteran (VN draft evader), former Speaker of the House (1996-2004), anti-gun politician, and convicted felon. (Before he was known as “Felon” Finneran, he was “Fingers” Finneran. Guess why). Finneran doesn’t have a BOP number; he copped a plea to a single count and probation, when they had him dead to rights on obstruction of justice and perjury in connection with redistricting scheme aimed at racially cleansing the State House and Senate.
  • 3rd from Left: Charles F. “Good-time Charlie” Flaherty, not a veteran (pre-VN draft evader), former Speaker of the House (1991-1996), anti-gun politician, and convicted felon. Flaherty went down for Federal tax evasion for bogus, padded expenses, and State conflict-of-interest violations for taking bribes from lobbyists.
  • 4th from Left: Robert “Made Guy” DeLeo, not a veteran (VN draft evader), current Speaker of the House (2009-some future indictment), anti-gun politician (he’s the author of the no-right-to-long-guns law), and fully in the tradition of his sticky-fingered predecessors. He’s not a convicted felon — yet — but give him time, he was just named as an undicted co-conspirator in a recent bribery trial; he hasn’t been indicted because he’s a political ally of US Attorney Carmen Ortiz and “activist” Attorney General Eric Holder.

The next three hacks are State Representative Dave Nangle, not a veteran, anti-gun politician; State Rep Kevin J. Murphy, not a veteran, anti-gun politician; and UMass-Lowell Chancellor Marty Meehan — not a veteran, an anti-gun hack in an academic sinecure, formerly an anti-gun politician, and a guy who parlayed the upper-middle-class salary of a Congressman, and a reputation for scratching the backs that scratched him, into a net worth in the tens of millions.

At various times during the public self service of all the above Massachusetts politicians, the Majority Leader of the State Senate was Billy “The Corrupt Midget” Bulger, anti-gun politician, and brother and support system for Mob figure, serial killer James “Whitey” Bulger. (The Brothers Bulger are the only guys on this page who actually served in the military, and both were honorably discharged, even though Whitey spent much of his time in the stockade).

Nothing to see here, or as Da Speakahs might put it, “What choo lookin’ at? Do you know who I yam?

 

The VA Strikes Back: Whistleblower in Siberia

VA-veterans-affairsPaula Pedene had arrived. One of the VA’s 50-odd top PR flacks, she had 6-figure pay, benefits approximately double that of her private-sector counterparts, and a job that required short hours and little effort. Her principal duty seems to have been noting, on social media and websites, the disease-of-the-month or -day, as designated by various government “awareness” programs. She was comfortable in the 1%, ensconced in a cushy job easier than some people’s retirements.

Until she did the unforgivable: exposed misconduct at the corrupt and debased Phoenix VA.

The USA does not have Siberia, that old Russian tradition of exile to snowy perdition, and a slow death “counting the birches.” But for a “traitor” like Pedene, who committed bureaucrat treason, they have the moral equivalent. David Fahrenthold in the Washington Post reports:

On her 71st workday in the basement, Paula Pedene had something fun to look forward to. She had an errand to run, up on the first floor.

“Today, I get to go get the papers. Exciting!” she said. “I get to go upstairs and, you know, see people.”

The task itself was no thrill: Retrieve the morning’s newspapers and bring them back to the library of the Phoenix Veterans Affairs hospital. The pleasure was in the journey. Down a long, sunlit hallway. Back again, seeing friends in the bustle of the hospital’s main floor.

Then, Pedene got back in the elevator and hit “B.” The day’s big excitement was over. It was 7:40 a.m.

“I will not be able to do this forever,” Pedene said later that day.

Pedene, 56, is the former chief spokeswoman for this VA hospital. Now, she is living in a bureaucrat’s urban legend. After complaining to higher-ups about mismanagement at this hospital, she has been reassigned — indefinitely — to a desk in the basement.

Paula Pedene, Washington Post photo.

Pedene, you see, violated the VA’s version of the First Rule of Fight Club, which is: You do not talk about Fight Club. The VA had many more rules than that: you do not talk about veterans neglected to death. You do not talk about secret waiting lists. You do not talk about managers who scam unearned bonuses by massaging false statistics. You do not talk about lies to the Congress, to the public, to veterans shunted aside to die. You do not talk, period. (Many of the fifty-odd other “spokesmen” have had surprisingly little trouble with these rules. Orwell lives in the spokesmen that do not speak!)

Pedene… Pedene talked. For violating the VA code of Omertà, Pedene gets, not the whacking a Mafiosi gets for violating his version, but a sort of lame, pathetic, good-enough-for-government-work shadow of a punishment: her desk is stuck in the basement and she’s given nothing to do.

Meanwhile, she’s still compensated to the tune of hundreds of thousands a year. Cha-chingg!

However, Paula Pedene is something you otherwise can’t find from the VA scandal

In the Phoenix case, investigators are still trying to determine whether Pedene was punished because of her earlier complaints. If she is, that would make her part of a long, ugly tradition in the federal bureaucracy — workers sent to a cubicle in exile.

In the past, whistleblowers have had their desks moved to break rooms, broom closets and basements. It’s a clever punishment, good-government activists say, that exploits a gray area in the law.

Good-government activists. Lord love a duck. That’s a bit like good-Ebola activists, isn’t it?

As you might might expect, Fahrenthold, writing for the Post, the newspaper read over a leisurely breakfast by the nation’s Leisure Class of idle bureaucrats, sees the whole thing as Too Traumatic for Words, but he bravely tries:

The whole thing can look minor on paper. They moved your office. So what? But the change is designed to afflict the striving soul of a federal worker, with a mix of isolation, idle time and lost prestige.

via For whistleblowers, a bold move can be followed by one to department basement – The Washington Post.

“The striving soul of a federal worker.” Lord love a duck, you really wrote that? Your “layers and layers of editors” actually let you write that?

If your federal worker has a soul, Dave, he’d better spit it out. It’s not his. The time for VA workers to feel some “lost prestige” is long overdue. So far, the VA scandal is months old and the only ones to feel the lash of consequences are the ones who broke the code of Omertà, like Pedene.

We’d have bet this guy was not a brain surgeon…

Brain-SurgeryBut we might have been wrong. The latest poster child for How Not to Open Carry is a doctor and director of a neuroengineering program. From the fine jihadis at al-Reuters:

(Reuters) – An Arizona doctor was arrested on suspicion of pointing a rifle toward a woman and her 17-year-old daughter inside a busy Phoenix airport terminal, police said on Monday.

They said Peter Nathan Steinmetz, 54, removed the AR-15 style rifle from a hanging position over his shoulder inside Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport’s busiest terminal on Friday and pointed it in the direction of the women.

No shots were fired and it was unclear whether the rifle was loaded. Steinmetz was arrested shortly afterwards on suspicion of two felony counts of disorderly conduct with a weapon.

….

The website of St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix said Steinmetz was a director of its neuroengineering program. A woman answering the telephone at Steinmetz’s home said he has been advised by his attorney not to comment.

via Doctor held for pointing rifle toward women at Phoenix airport -police | Reuters.

Look, if you want to carry a gun, get a license and a belt and holster. You might be very proud of your hardware, but not everyone is a gun nut ready to admire your free-floating rail system or EoTech holo sight.

We frequently rambled about the sharp end in hadji clothes with a couple of pistols underneath. (Say what you will about the shalwar kameez, the ubiquitous man dress, but it rocks for concealing just about anything). We saved plates, brain bucket, and long guns for when we expected specific trouble.

We haven’t seen anything in our shire in New England that would indicate we need to gun up to the M4 (or AR-10, Thompson, AKMS, etc., etc.), and we kind of think Phoenix can’t be that much worse off. So if Dr Steinmetz was anticipating the Zombie Apocalypse, he seems to have jumped the gun.

Hat tip, Tam (and Tam…. and Tam. She’s our tripwire… the Arizona Zombies have to go through Indiana on their way here).

Breaking: Scruff Face Wins

When he was clean-shaven, and had a career (>30 years ago)

When he was clean-shaven, and had a career (30 years ago).

We didn’t see this coming…

Although verdicts in such cases are customarily unanimous, both sides agreed to a split verdict. The verdict of 8 to 2 was reached after more than a week of deliberations. Jurors awarded Mr. Ventura $500,000 for defamation and $1.3 million for what was termed the author’s unjust enrichment.

via Jesse Ventura Wins Defamation Case – NYTimes.com.

We hope he enjoys the money.

Does he think his reputation was worth it? Because that’s taken a bigger Streisand Effect hit from the suit than it did from the story in American Sniper – and both of those clobberin’s are bigger than the belt he took (or didn’t) to the jaw.

Judges behaving badly

Law-ScaleAndHammerTwo crooked Philadelphia judges were acquitted of all charges, and four even more crooked judges were acquitted of some charges, on Wednesday.

A federal jury in Philadelphia this morning cleared six former judges in the Philadelphia Traffic Court of most charges in the long-running ticket fixing case (see previous story).
The verdicts were mostly “not guilty,” although four of the judges were convicted of lesser charges in what amounted to a wholesale rejection of the prosecution’s case.
Former judges Michael Sullivan, Mark Bruno, Michael Lowry, Robert Mulgrew, Thomasine Tynes, and Willie Singletary were cleared of conspiracy and ticket-fixing.
However, four of the judges — Lowry, Mulgrew, Tynes, and Singletary — were convicted of lying to authorities about the administration of so-called “consideration” for certain connected VIPs in traffic cases (see related story).

Now, how can we call them crooked judges, if two of them walked and four more beat most of the rap? Well, because the defense used a pretty good defense for a Philadelphia or other urban jury: the old,” sure they’re crooks, but that’s just how things are done here, not crime-crime.”

But the jury apparently found that the alleged ticket-fixing was not a federal crime.   That was part of the argument made by defense attorneys, who conceded that mistakes were made by the judges and there may have been ethical lapses, but there was no federal crime.

via Six Phila. Traffic Court Judges Acquitted of Most Serious Charges « CBS Philly.

Crooked, crooked, crooked judges. Give government power, and people in government will be corrupt with it. Every. Single. Time.

But hey, that’s just “How we do it here in Philadelphia.”

A Sick Puppy Story from DC

Gerard Darvell Williams mugshotLife in certain suburbs of DC: Gerard Darvell Williams was upset because his woman was leaving. So he killed one of her dogs and one of the dog’s puppies, and tried to kill another. That’ll show her, right, Gerry?

Gerard Darvell Williams, 32, has been charged with animal cruelty, domestic assault and battery, and destruction of property.

Police say Williams and a 29-year-old woman were involved in a dispute Monday that escalated to the point that she tried to gather her belongings and leave.

The woman told police that Williams then stabbed her pit bull, which police found dead with a stab wound to its back.

Police say they also found a dead 2-week-old puppy, and another one that appeared to have been injured by blunt force.

via Police: Virginia Man Stabbed, Killed Pit Bull | NBC4 Washington.

We’ve been pretty critical of police in cases where they’ve injured dogs, but the cops have usually had at least a colorable argument for lighting up Fido. “I was afraid for my life,” as the PBA lawyers drill them to say, anytime there’s a need to duck responsibility for their misconduct.

(Case in point: the police union is fighting the firing and demotion of the bad cops in the rare accountability story we told you about last week. Because a cop job is an entitlement, no matter how much a guy is a throwback to Neanderthal Man, or how dishonest he is, or how his credibility is so shot he can’t even be put on the stand anywhere in the state, like a convicted perjurer in some states).

But for every case of cop cruelty to animals, and you could have a blog item a day on that subject if someone wanted to make a hobby of it, there’s 1,000 cases of Criminal Man (Homo Sapiens EBTcardicus) cruelty to animals, like this crumb Williams did.

Another local story has a little more detail from the police statement:

After the parties had separated, the victim attempted to gather her belongings and leave the home. At that point, the victim stated she witnessed the accused use a kitchen knife to stab her dog.

The story continues:

Officers found the dog, an adult male pit bull, dead with a stab wound in its back. A second dog, a 2-week-old puppy was also deceased and a second puppy was critically injured — both apparently due to blunt force trauma….

Three other puppies and an adult female pit bull were also located in the home and appeared to be unharmed.

Michael Vick, the quarterback whose unpleasant character exposed itself in much the same way as Williams’s has done, got both Federal and State felony convictions and did 18 months in the Big House. Unfortunately, Williams is not a celebrity and no prosecutor will be looking to make him a springboard to a wider career.  He’s just one more routine defendant.

Note also the weapon he used. In many ways, a dog is tougher than a human, but as it has frequently been to humans, a kitchen knife was sufficient to kill the dog here.

TSA Mongs Reach Deeper in Your Pocket

tsa-security-theaterFor the billions wasted on the Transportation Security Theater Agency (the direct cost of the failed agency is approaching $10B a year), and the complete lack of performance of the agency (the number of terrorists caught and/or terror plots thwarted by TSA is holding at 0), the agency is doing what government agencies do: grabbing more money. Directly from travelers.

A security fee that the government charges airline passengers more than doubled on Monday, from $2.50 to $5.60.

Lawmakers last year approved an increase in the fee, which is tacked onto the cost of airplane tickets, as part of a budget agreement.

Additionally, passengers will be charged twice if they have a layover for a connecting flight….

“Due to new @TSA fee hike, travelers will pay a billion dollars more per year in added taxes/fees thanks to U.S. [government],” Airlines for American President Nick Calio tweeted recently.

via TSA fee on plane tickets more than doubles | TheHill.

There is no limit to the greed of these payroll patriots. And there’s no accountability for their failures. The director who built a multimillion-dollar Xanadu office? No consequences. The hundreds, if not thousands, of TSA agents who steal from travelers? No consequences (in the worst case, they are quietly fired with a neutral reference). The abuses of Behavioral Detection Officer quackery? No consequences. Mismanagement at every level? No consequences.

No one good, decent, honest, competent, moral, ethical or intelligent has ever been employed at TSA in any capacity whatsoever.

We Say ‘Lord Love a Duck’ all the time, but really…

WoodDuck2011We don’t usually mean it quite so literally. A vet (veteran type, not veterinarian) says his flock of ducks are “therapy animals.” The bedroom community he lives in says they’re unauthorized livestock. He’s playing the I-was-traumatized card.

We have a kind of cruel opinion about that. You can be traumatized by an event — once. If it continues to traumatize you after that, it’s not the event that is to blame.

Well, here’s how the Marion (OH) Star reports this case:

Darin Welker is facing a citation and a hearing in Coshocton Municipal Court for owning 14 ducks, as they are in violation of a village ordinance.

Welker, who lives on Grandview Street in West Lafayette, was cited June 23 with a minor misdemeanor. He said he uses the ducks for therapy after being wounded in 2005 in Iraq and should be allowed to keep them.

Welker said he has a letter from the Mental Health Department of the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs recommending he keep the ducks.

“I came back (from Iraq) with a major back injury, and between the back injury and the (post-traumatic stress disorder) that I also brought home, there were numerous problems,” Welker said.

In 2012, the VA paid for a surgery to Welker’s back but did not approve the physical therapy recommended by his surgeon, nor did it provide mental therapy, Welker said.

Frankly, if you need mental therapy for a back injury… you probably need mental therapy, period. Oh, wait.

Welker acquired his ducks in March when they were just days old. He had first heard the idea of using ducks as therapy weeks before and thought it wouldn’t hurt to try, he said.

via Ohio village says veteran’s therapy ducks aren’t allowed | The Marion Star | marionstar.com.

We’ve seen some guys play the vet card pretty hard for stuff, but this is the first time we’ve seen a vet self-medicating with freakin’ ducks. Well, given what might have happened to him if he’d left it all up to the VA, maybe he has a point. But still….

It’s kind of a sore subject that guys just fence around. But a lot of people are really riding the disability train. This guy hasn’t worked since 2000 because his back hurts, and he’s so traumatized by what appears to have been a back injury. Really?

There are blind and head-shot and legless guys out there going to work every day. What makes any one of us special?

And don’t even get us started on the “therapy animal” dodge that Unique And Special Snowflakes™ use to drag their pets around with them. Yes, we’re on to you, and that’s why we give you The Look™. Now, there’s no question that pets are good for a person’s soul. Unless he’s an incipient serial killer, or something, in which pets are a good way to tease him out. (Hard on the pet, though).

But it’s like the book now being hyped that says being near, or in, the water is psychologically good for you — it’s someone trying to hype something glaringly obvious to astronomical levels. People do better near the water. Duh, no kidding, Dick Tracy. That’s why you pay more for the same house with a water view in Santa Monica than you pay for the same floor plan in freakin’ Bakersfield. That’s why the poor beggars in Bakersfield want swimming pools.

If the real estate marketers, the mighty quant geniuses who gave us the Bubble of 2007, have figured this out, then the university professors can only be a decade or two behind.

Of course, I read enough into the “water is good for you” book to get to where the guy who’s going all science-y describes how environmental exposure to water can change your brain and then your offspring can inherit those changes. 

Konstantin Lysenko, call your office….

Back to this particular guy with his “therapy” ducks. By now he has convinced himself he needs them — all “therapy critter” folks seem to arrive at this point sooner or later. Our guess is that he plays the Vet Grievance Card™ and they let him keep his quacking menagerie.

I we ever throw the Vet Grievance Card™, please slap us back to reality. Do it for a real vet who walks a little funny these days.

Update 22 July 14

Speaking of ducks, back on 7th July 14 we posted “When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have ducklings,” about a lady who locked up her brakes in the fast lane to save baby ducks and killed three people. In New Hampshire, a lady stopped in the median strip (not legal, but safer than stopping in the lane) to help orphaned ducklings on Friday, and got a $44 ticket for her trouble. No humans were hurt, but she saw two ducklings get nailed, and left four behind when the cops wrote her up and sent her on her way. She did save two ducklings, one of which perished at an animal shelter; the ducklings left behind are unlikely to have survived.

So, these are the Navy’s priorities

Screenshot 2014-07-19 22.13.16The Navy, like traitor, felon and jailbird Bradley Manning, has a thing called a Transition Plan, and it may be proceeding towards the same end. We’ll provide the document as a .pdf for you, but we thought we’d highlight a couple of the lowlights.

First, get a load of the cover of this thing! Decide whether they wanted to publish the annual report of some Silicon Valley high-tech, or a brochure for some overpriced college. So they split the difference. It has the college brochure One Cool Looking Brother, the obligatory Action Shots, and the Meaningless Slogan some marketing department MBAs agonized and argued over, in this case, “MOVING FORWARD… MOVING FORWARD…

Given that ships generally suck at backing up, that’s probably not a completely bad choice, but you have to wonder whether it was an attempt to suck up to the Administration’s E Ring suits, or hosts of sparsely-watched MSNBC shows, two practically interchangeable demographics.

The plan begins with a grinning picture (we’ll spare you) Ray Mabus, who’s getting antsy now that he’s only got two years left to name DDGs for Sacco and Vanzetti, an LHA USS Jane Fonda, and maybe an SSBN USS Benedict Arnold. And the plan is a very curious thing. Maybe it’s that we don’t have a Distinguished Naval Personage around the Manor, although we have thrown the dog in the fountain on a slow day, for comic relief. But the plan makes no sense to us… we can’t tell what they’re transitioning from or to, it’s almost as if in Ray Mabus World “transition” is an intransitive verb.

Anyway, the document includes an absolutely shocking set of goals. These are the Navy’s priorities:

  1. Take care of our people The DON is committed to attracting, developing and retaining a diverse total workforce trained and equipped to meet our strategic readiness objectives.
  2. Maximize warfighter readiness and avoid hollowness The DON will effectively size our force to meet strategic demands, maintain a credible, capable and combat ready military force.
  3. Lead the nation in sustainable energy The DON continues to support alternative energy efforts, realizing that energy independence is vital to our national security and the safety of our Sailors and Marines.
  4. Promote acquisition excellence and integrity

The DON is improving the execution of every program and increasing anti-fraud efforts, and leveraging strategic sourcing to take advantage of economies of scale.

5. Proliferate unmanned systems

The DON will integrate unmanned systems across the entire department ensuring that we can operate in any environment. Our global presence will be sustained and enhanced with our continued investment in unmanned systems.

6. Drive innovative enterprise transformation

The DON will continue to transform our business enterprise, ensuring that available resources are directed to our Sailors and Marines. 

Screenshot 2014-07-19 22.12.59Apologies for any brain-dead formatting. (WordPress ^$^&#^I#$!! But we digress). Apart from the fact that those are a politician’s anodyne and empty statements, worthy of a game of Buzzword Bingo except that everyone has a winning card, the priorities they reflect are remarkable. (Mabus is an anodyne and empty politician; a former one-term governor who was defeated for a second term, he got rich as a revolving-door crony capitalist, and has served in several political appointments). Indeed, those statements look so stupid we’re putting a screen-cap of the document here for those of you disinclined to download the whole anodyne and empty Buzzword Bingo thing.

Of course, Mabus’s lodestone, “diversity,” gets mentioned in Goal 1. And “sustainable energy” gets mentioned a couple further on. Those terms come up a few times in the document. But the mention of “combat ready military force” in Goal 2 is the only place the word “combat” appears in the whole thing. That’s not what this Secretary is transitioning this Navy towards, apparently. Some things a Navy might do don’t show up, either: “battle?” “Superiority?” “Dominance?” Those all get “No Results Found.” There is, however, a mention of the Navy’s element, the sea. Exactly one mention, on Page 11 (which is page 13 of the .pdf, thanks to the cover letter). Here’s the only context in which Ray Mabus’s Navy is concerned about the freakin’ sea:

Institutionalize environmental sustainability on land and sea

Well, we guess we can’t say that the Navy has no priorities. It has priorities, all right. But we think we can be forgiven for the thought that they are all the wrong priorities.

Here’s the document, if these samples haven’t already glazed your glazzies: Navy Transition Plan-Fy14-16-Final.pdf

You want sustainable energy, Ray Mabus? Go to the Naval Academy where, in a tomb reminiscent of Napoleon’s, John Paul Jones’s remains lie in honored repose, returned to the US after a century in a restless foreign interment. Wrap the old Admiral in a winding of varnish-insulated copper magnetic wire and call him an armature. Add a pair of magnets and brushes to take off the power , and zowie! Sustainable energy, as he spins.