Thursday, April 30, 2009

A bit of gun blogging

I'm trying to embed some video into this posting. This is me shooting an apple from about ten feet with a Highpoint 9mm. My friend is doing commentary and all you can hear of me is the gleeful cackling in the background. Her son, on his first time at the range, had tried to shoot it with a .22. He hit it plenty but didn't get the results we wanted so I got the Highpoint and made that bad boy disappear like it was teleported out on the first shot.


video

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Clueless, classless, and downright crass

Boy, I don't even really know where to begin on this one. Between Arlen Specter and his conversion to the Dark Side, ahem, Democrats, due to the fact that his pollsters told him that he couldn't win the Republican primary in Pennsylvania or this little tidbit that's not widely known throughout the web about how the Obama's most generously (please to note that this is meant in the most sarcastic possible way) gave autographed pictures of themselves for an auction at their children's school. They were not even original photos but were prints of the covers of Rolling Stone and Vogue.

Bear in mind that this auction is designed to raise money to bring underpriviledged children to the school. Additionally, even Bill Clinton (and I can't believe I'm saying this) had more class and donated three hours of his time for a round of golf that brought close to six figures for this project. According to the article, Chelsea Clinton is still donating time and money to the school. I guess it's fine to show up for photo ops at a soup kitchen or give speeches but heaven forbid that their children actually have to go to school with 'those types'.

Back to Arlen Specter... I have to admit that I am completely dumbfounded and dismayed by the complete and utter lack of any type of loyalty to his constituents this man has. Of course, considering his voting record, I'm not surprised since he's been a closet Democrat since he 'switched sides' in 1965.

But to actually come out and say, "I am unwilling to have my twenty-nine year Senate record judged by the Pennsylvania Republican primary electorate," he said in the statement. I don't have to say anything to them. They said it to me," shows that the only thing that he cares about is getting re-elected because he feels that his constituency is mistaken in not wanting to have him in office. What utter and total hubris.

I guess having a narcisist in the White House has brought out the narcissists in the Senate as well. To me this is the ultimate example of what I talked about in a previous post. There is such a total disconnect from the people that elect our officials and the officials themselves that the officials are now forgetting their responsibilities and why they were elected in the first place. If I was living in Pennsylvania right now, I'd be preparing the pitchforks and torches and would give him a reception he wouldn't forget if he dared to set foot in the state again.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

What a bunch of.... bunk

I was reading this article that was on Drudge's front page. I deal with statistics and numbers for a living and I call bullsh*t on the whole thing. Their sample size and methodology was as follows: "The AP-GfK Poll was conducted April 16-20 by GfK Roper Public Affairs and Media. It involved telephone interviews on landline and cell phones with 1,000 adults nationwide. The margin of sampling error is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points. " They are throwing around quotes like: "Most also say he's changing things about the right amount and at the right speed. But nearly a third say he's trying to change too many things too quickly. " Think about it: they use a nebulous term like 'most' which, depending on the wording of the survey and how the results were totalled, might not include anyone who didn't answer that particular question so 'most' might be five people.

Judging from the numbers of folks that attended the Tea Parties on April 15 (estimated at about 400,000 or 400 times the number of people polled for this fluff/propoganda piece) , I can't believe this quote: "Others said their newfound optimism had nothing to do with Obama, but rather with an era of personal responsibility they believe has come with the economic meltdown."

One of the points of the Tea Parties was to indicate that the American people feel that the government is rewarding the lack of personal and business responsibility. The American public should be appalled that AP and their pollsters think that we are so stupid that we would give credence to their poll and this article.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Why Pigs Can't Fly-Patterns in the Clouds

One of the things that I try to do is see patterns in the world around me. Maybe some of them aren't accurate (that cloud looks like a pig with wings) but I think that sometimes I'm hitting pretty close to the truth.

I was listening to NPR this morning on the way to work and they were discussing a report that says that as far as national healthcare, people thought that aspects of it were good (electronic records, etc.) but that they did not want the decisions for their individual care taken away from their doctors and given to an appointed federal government panel. This struck me as being symbolic of the federal government sovereignty versus state sovereignty.

I have lived in many places around the country and one thing that I have noticed is that each locality has its own social structure and norms, language, idioms. I have often thought as I tried to adapt to my new surroundings that it would be almost impossible for an overarching body to have an understanding of the particulars of a state--its norms and needs. That is why our Founding Fathers created the House of Representatives, so that the individual ideologies of a place would be heard in a larger forum.

The problem is that the representatives no longer spend any time in the place that elects them--they are brought into the circle of Washington DC and so lose their touch with their state and locality--they adapt to the social structures and norms of DC and disconnect from their place of origin. I have long contended that our elected Representatives are no longer, well, representing and I feel that their disconnection from their constituency is why. So what happens is a groupthink and the individualism of the states is no longer brought into the discussions that happen on Capital Hill. It is similar to what has happened with the mainstream media--there is groupthink on either coast and the rest of the country (where I live) is referred to as 'flyover country' and so is discounted and those voices are not heard.

This is why increased federal power over the states is doomed to failure and why the Tea Parties have started and why people are beginning to speak out against larger federal powers. In Washington DC there is no longer any connection to the country as a whole. This is just like a panel sitting in an Ivory Tower that has no personal knowledge or connection to a patient or that patient's individual needs. Neither system can be good for the people or a patient because they are being forced to adapt to a system that, due to its large size, cannot and does not take into account the norms and needs of those of us in flyover country.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Well, duh s**t!!!

I saw this article today and my jaw just about dropped to the floor. A 'watchdog agency' has come out and said that the "Obama administration initiatives could increasingly expose taxpayers to losses and make the government more vulnerable to fraud." Then Tim Geithner came out and said the following...

"But under questioning from panel members, Geithner said that even if banks want to pay back the money, that doesn't mean the government would necessarily accept the payment.

"Ultimately we have to look at two things, one is do the institutions themselves have enough capital to be able to lend and does the system as a whole, is it working for the American people for recovery," Geithner said."

"While credit conditions have improved in the past few months, "reports on bank lending show significant declines in consumer loans, including credit card loans, and commercial and industrial loans," Geithner said."

Riddle me this Batman... if there are banks that are solvent and don't particularly WANT to owe the federal government money, why shouldn't they be allowed to repay a loan?? The quick answer is to keep them under the government's thumb. Another riddle... if they have all of the federal money but yet aren't lending, then what is the problem?? The answer is that they are probably anticipating another government move that will totally screw them.

All I know is that banks are not lending money for automobiles, etc. like they used to and this has to be true in other lending ventures as well. A bank will not lend more than 80% of the price of the car, whether it is used or new.

SO, a final riddle True Believers (yes I know that quote is from Stan Lee and Marvel comics, but work with me), how is anyone going to have enough money to buy a car when a down payment for a $15,000 car would have to be $3000??

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Indiana and Chicago Tea Parties

There are so many folks out there that have blogged both the Chicago Tea Party and the Valparaiso Indiana Tea Party that have great pictures and video that I will not be putting up any on my site. Please see The Middle of the Right and Founding Bloggers for some fantastic pictures, videos, and commentary.

What I do want to relate is what I noticed at these Tea Parties. Most of the folks that were there had taken off from work (myself included in that--burning a vacation day for something I feel is important), had taken off early from work (Valparaiso), or were there on their lunch hour (Chicago). Bottom line though is that most of the folks with whom I spoke are working people. Generally middle class, regular folks who felt that it was important enough to take vacation time, to take their lunch hours, to take off early (perhaps without pay) to let the government know that they are tired of our 'representatives' not representing us anymore.

Most of us didn't have any prior experience with protesting. We were even SO polite that we stopped at red lights to let traffic go during our march from Daley Plaza to the main event at the Federal Plaza in Chicago. It was interesting that the chick from CNN was really the only person who seemed to want to start anything (and she almost succeeded) but I think she got a reality check later (see this video from Founding Bloggers) and found that the "right wing dangerous anti-government radicals" really weren't so much dangerous anti-government radicals but were thinking persons that were on to her schtick and weren't going to be a party to it or tolerate it. My personal opinion is that the MSM, even local MSM are so full of hubris that they can't imagine that all of this is going on due to individual opinions--that there's no one pulling strings.

There was one guy at the Valpo party who tried to start something by saying "George Bush for King! Isn't that what you people want?" and who left kind of chastened when instead of getting a vehement response, got the fish eye from folks and a "You must be from ACORN". Please to note that he didn't answer to that.

I dont' know where all of this will lead, but hopefully it'll be back to a system where elected representatives actually represent the will of the people rather than taking the imperialist approach of thinking that they know what's best for everyone.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Growing Threat caused by Foreign Relations

I was reviewing the news of the day. Something that has been weighing on my mind ever since I saw it was the video of the President of the United States bowing and scraping to the sharia-law loving Wahhabi despot who happens to rules Saudi Arabia. It seems that the government has no concept of how to deal with folks whose population, in many cases, has the equivalent of a sixth grade education, beats women who go out of the house with a father-in-law instead of a blood relative (the fact they have to be accompanied at all is another blog post in the making), and who truly believe that anyone not of their faith must be converted, enslaved, or killed.

In reading about the President's tour wherein he blamed the United States and our freedoms for all of the world's ills and kowtowed and pandered to foreign governments acting like a small child saying what he thought they would want to hear, much like he played the American public, I was aghast.

I was struck by his actions in Turkey, whose government fiercely fought the appointment of Anders Fogh Rasmussen to the head of NATO because the the Danish government didn't stone to death the Danish cartoonist who caricatured Mohammed. Ralph Peters in the New York Daily Post has a fantastic article on how the road to hell is paved with good intentions, which he labels "O's Amateur Hour". Combine all of this with the fact that the President wishes to open diplomatic relations with Iran and I just can't help but wonder if he was indoctrinated by being raised in part in Muslim-dominated countries and this is a way to open the door for them into the United States.

Maybe it's time for me to get out the tin-foil hat, maybe the President and his staff are complete morons when it comes to the protocol of dealing with these governments. I can't believe though that these 'gaffes' are accidental and that there isn't a larger agenda. Or maybe I just can't believe that a group of supposedly educated people can be so utterly stupid.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Tea Parties and Simon Jester

My partner is probably one of the biggest Heinlein fans out there. I've been a sci-fi nerd ever since could read, but had never delved into Heinlein's many-related worlds. There is a group out there at Simon-Jester.org who are building the idea of dissent against authority and have created a symbol of that, which you can see on their website. They see our liberties being eroded, much as they were in The Moon is a Harsh Mistress (my present reading material) and know that this goes beyond party and class.

We are going from a republic, straight through democracy to an oligarchy (please take the time to listen to this.). I was a political science major and I still needed to be reminded that the United States system is not based on being a democracy (because that is the meme used by our education system and main-stream media to make us forget our roots) but is a republic and is ruled by law to keep the rights of the few from being trampled by the many.

The Congress (please note that I do not say 'our' Congress because I no longer believe that they are acting by the will of the people, but only for themselves and their own gain) and the President are forming their own oligarchical system--the rule of the many by the few. And the laws that they are passing are apparently only for those of us who are not part of their elite. (see anything on Dodd, Murtha, Geithner, etc. as examples).

They are aided by the main stream media who have abandoned the idea of actually reporting the events of the day to trying to create the events of the day and to a large part they have succeeded. From calling elections for a particular candidate before all polls have closed to attacking the style of clothes worn by a candidate, they have been trying, and to a large part, succeeding in shaping our political world as it stands today.

As a proud American (unlike the President who actually BOWED DOWN to a Saudi prince-hat tip: Michelle Malkin), I will be doing my civic duty and will be attending the closest Tea Party on April 15. The government, the media, and our educational system have been attempting to condition the American public into complacency, much like frogs in hot water. It's time to notice that we're getting close to the boiling point and make a leap for our freedoms.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

To Carry or Not to Carry, That is the Question.....

One of the blogs that I read on a fairly regular basis, Hecate's Crossroad, had a story about a former Green Beret and his wife in Loudoun, VA who were attacked in their peaceful upper middle class neighborhood. The husband is dead and the wife is in critical condition. He had a carry permit but was not carrying--I guess figuring that a stroll or walk in one's neighborhood made it unnecessary. She makes a point that I think bears repeating although I hear it often enough in my home:

"Does carrying a gun all the time mean I'm paranoid? No, it means I'm prepared. I pay my insurance premiums, wear my seat belt, and carry my gun. No difference."

She also has a link to "why I don't carry a gun". This lists the reasons that anti-carry folks would give and answers them back. Worth a read, but definitely from the female standpoint.

In answer to the title of this posting, there is no question--to carry is the answer.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Truly, this has WTF written all over it....

Okay, just minding my own business, surfing the 'net, checking my email. And I come across this article on AOL. If the souvenir shop helicopters for Gordon Brown's children wasn't classless enough, the Obamas gifted the Queen of England with a personalized IPOD. This is after Obama's limo had to be moved because they were blocking one of the entrances to Buckingham Palace and the Crown Prince was trying to get in for the reception.

To be fair, the Obama's also gave the Queen a rare songbook but for fuck's sake, a personalized IPOD is something that you give a fourteen year old child--my boyfriend's niece has her own personalized IPOD too. I gotta say too that I was taught not to block someone else's driveway when you go and visit.