Wednesday, July 19, 2017

'War for the Planet of the Apes'

Valerie and I went to the latest incarnation this afternoon. Not awful if you take it straight, not particularly good, either.

As anti-white, anti-American, anti-US military metaphor, though, it couldn't get much more heavy handed.

White American Special Forces troops herd all-black apes into Nazi-like concentration camp, play the Star Spangled Banner, beat the black folk mercilessly, starve them mercilessly, wave the American flag, suffer attack aka civil war from other American troops who come from the North, the American flag goes up in flames, avalanche kills all the white people, and the black apes hike off to the Promised Land, free at last from white people. Just what you should expect from a Woodie Harrelson movie.

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Post-Apocalyptic Erotica

I went to Amazon's Kindle book section and started typing 'post-apocalyptic fiction' into the search field to find something inspirational to read, but among the suggestions for the search was 'post-apocalyptic erotica'. Well, I accidentally clikked on that of course and found that there are 28 pages of 435 post-apocalyptic erotic offerings for your panting, I mean prepping, pleasure. Prepper porn: Who knew?

This could open up a whole new market of potential preppers among the erotica-inclined: "Marsha stroked her shapely AN-M14 TH3 incendiary grenades as she softly moaned 'Oh, yes, Dirk, yes! I love it when you go full-auto!'"

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

18 U.S. Code § 241 - Conspiracy Against Rights

Let's see Donald Trump start vigorously enforcing "18 U.S. Code § 241 - Conspiracy against rights: If two or more persons conspire to injure, oppress, threaten, or intimidate any person in any State, Territory, Commonwealth, Possession, or District in the free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him by the Constitution or laws of the United States, or because of his having so exercised the same...

They shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both; and if death results from the acts committed in violation of this section...they shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for any term of years or for life, or both, or may be sentenced to death."

Start with the DC City Council and Mayor for their gun control laws. Move on from there.

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Our Responsibility: Preparing for Low Probability/High Consequences Events

Juliette Kayyem, in The Atlantic magazine :
The “never again” standard is as absurd as it is simplistic. It is as vague as it is damaging. It tried to convince Americans, in subtle and not-so-subtle ways, that invulnerability was a possibility. This has hindered homeland-security planners for a decade and a half: Knowing that no security apparatus can stop all forms of harm, including “lone wolfs,” progress is better measured in how well people prepare and educate themselves for the inevitable. What if the United States simply accepted, as a nation, that bad things happen and get ready for that possibility?
I agree with Juliette Kayyem about preparedness rather than a hopeless focus on prevention, but what does this really involve at the personal level?

With the exceptions of hurricanes in hurricane zones, major earthquakes in earthquake zones, and the like, most threats are individually highly dispersed and/or low probability/high consequences events.

Just as we reasonably expect our home to never burn down, but have insurance anyway, should we consider these individually improbable events like terrorism against us personally something we should individually insure against? If so, what to do?

I suspect that government in a relatively free society cannot deal easily with highly dispersed threats like terrorism or even random crime: police cannot be everywhere at all times, nor should we want them to be.

Several million Americans have gotten concealed carry licenses, while millions more have gotten their state legislatures to do away with the need for CCW licenses entirely. So far as I can tell, there have been no great negative consequences to either of those events. If there have been, the news media, no friend of law-abiding private citizens carrying handguns, has done a lousy job of covering them.

Imagine what might have been different in Orlando or Paris if if even a few people had been carrying guns. Given the US experience with legal concealed carry, background crime would not have been 'blood in the streets', while one or two people shooting back might have saved dozens of lives.

Even a strong defensive mindset might have made huge differences in the kill counts: apparently no one in Orlando or Paris counter-attacked even though the murderers had to pause multiple times to reload. Imagine if someone had the defensive mindset to attack, either with a chair, a bottle, or even barehanded. Instead they got out their cell phones and shot videos.

Wrong mind set.

The less radical preppers may be on to something: personal responsibility for one's self and family. I'm not talking about the quasi-millenarianist End Of The World As We Know It people, but those who take preparing for disasters quite seriously, with food, water, medical supplies, defensive weaponry, communication equipment -at least battery powered receivers so one can hear news reports- a ready reserve of cash (actual cash in small bills, in case the ATMs and cash registers are down for a few days or weeks), sanitation, and the like, sufficient for a few weeks.

It seems outright foolish not to have such preps if one lives in a hurricane or earthquake zone, but perhaps people in the rest of the country might do well by considering their own circumstances and prepare for the more likely disasters.

An interesting aspect to preparing for 'normal' short term disasters is that the preparations are pretty much the same: preparing well for the more probable issues also prepares one for the less probable.

I have come to believe—as a security expert but also as a mother of three—that among all of its flaws, the worst aspect of “never again” was that it let experts like me run the show. We have failed to show that the conflicts and choices inherent in protecting the homeland are really not that different from those Americans and people around the world encounter every day. In our day-to-day lives, people try to protect those closest to them, but they also plan for the bad things that will happen. The essential aspects of those two priorities—preparedness, planning, flexibility, communication, back-up systems, learning from mistakes—are essentially the same. By too easily separating the homeland from the home, experts have failed to nurture the vigor and resiliency which is the greatest strength of a nation that was built on vulnerability: the American public.

And if the United States could build resiliency one home at a time, maybe, in another 15 years, the country will have stopped asking the question to some anonymous bureaucracy with strange acronyms and esoteric risk assessments: “Are we safer?” Instead, people should start embracing, “Am I ready?”
Taking personal responsibility is self-empowering. What is right about that?

Labels: , , ,

Friday, February 10, 2017

The Good Old Days of Carrying Guns On Airplanes

Back in the 1960s it was not all that unusual for people going hunting to carry long guns in soft cases right into a plane. Hard cases hardly existed, except for some leather ones, because no one in his right mind would put a gun in checked luggage: too big a chance of damage. While few people could get a permit to carry a handgun in those days, those who had a revolver or pistol in their briefcase would never have been challenged, either, because no one looked. Or cared.

I remember as a kid going through General Mitchell Field in Milwaukee with my Dad and a pair of Browning A-5 semi-auto shotguns in soft cases. After checking in we went up the escalator to the concourse, where a couple very polite gentlemen in grey suits buttonholed us and asked if they could speak to us. Asked when our flight left, looked at our tickets, then sent us on our way with "Have a great hunt!"

We continued through the concourse and onto the plane. The very nice stewardess, knowing they would not fit in the overhead hat racks, took them and put them in the coat closet until we got off at the destination. We then walked off the plane and through the concourse with our shotguns. Repeat on return home, with dead ducks in our luggage.

It turned out that LBJ was coming in an hour or so after our plane departed. No sweat at all, which in retrospect is interesting, given how LBJ happened to be President in the first place.

My guess is that if we went back to that there would be surprisingly few incidents.

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

8 U.S. Code § 1182 - Inadmissible aliens

Yes, President Trump DOES have the legal authority to stop people coming in from other countries. Any people, all people, any country, all countries.

That pesky 8 U.S. Code § 1182 - Inadmissible aliens
"(f) Suspension of entry or imposition of restrictions by President.
Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate. Whenever the Attorney General finds that a commercial airline has failed to comply with regulations of the Attorney General relating to requirements of airlines for the detection of fraudulent documents used by passengers traveling to the United States (including the training of personnel in such detection), the Attorney General may suspend the entry of some or all aliens transported to the United States by such airline."
This is not a new law: It was enacted in 1952. IIRC, Jimmy Carter used pesky 8 U.S. Code § 1182 (f) to prohibit the entry of certain Iranians aka "any class of aliens", and to track down some lranians aka "any class of aliens" already here legally and deport them.


Labels: , , , , ,

Sunday, December 04, 2016

Jehovah's Witness At The Front Door, or The Perils Of Missionarying

Once upon a time, in the wild days of my bygone Youth, a very nice Jehovah's Witness lady in a knee length dress came to my mother's front door and was doing her best to save Mom, when our large, very wet, and smelling-of-fish Golden Retriever came barreling out of Lake Michigan after her morning swim, careened around the corner of the house, and silently drove from behind into the house through the nice Jehovah's Witness lady's legs.

Jehovah's Witness lady stood up about 5 inches taller than a person her height could rightly stand up and took her leave shortly thereafter. Very shortly.

Last time a Jehovah's Witness EVER came to our door.