Monday, December 12, 2011

Pittsburgh Post Gazette Bias


So, his entire premise is sexist.  Not to mention that he ignores simple, basic logic. 
My first question to the author of this article would have to be: "What about people who are legitimately weak?  If your premise is that men don't need guns to be men, what about those with infirmities, women, kids at school, and other people who are at a physical disadvantage?" 
The usage of simple logic dictates that if we do away with firearms, the people with the most ability to use force will be those with the most force available.  His goal is to return us to a day of inequality, where women were domineered by men, and other social injustices abounded. 
He also makes an enormous blunder when he references the Cullen report in Scotland.  Their logic is that if the number of gun owners is decreased, the level of gun violence will decrease.  This just makes no sense when you actually apply the logic of the real world to it.  When you look at Scotland, which is well known for it's anti-gun laws, you see an INCREASE in violence, including gun violence.  You see a higher per-capita rate of being a victim, and other things which indicate that disarming the populace serves the exact opposite purpose of it's stated intent.
He also says:
The emphasis is on resolving disputes through force -- physical force initially, lethal force ultimately.
He misunderstands the intent completely.  The emphasis is not on resolving disputes through force (if that was the case, there would be many more men in prison, businesses would contain boxing rings, and we'd see fist fights in stores over prices of goods.), rather it is on being prepared to defend ourselves and our loved ones if someone else chooses to use force against us.  It has nothing to do with disputes whatsoever.  The reason I carry a gun is not to give me the upper hand in a dispute.  It is to provide the even footing required to be safe if the unthinkable happens.
Additionally he states:
Then there's the concomitant vigilante mentality and the belief that the righteous gun owner may have to fight the government itself if his Second Amendments rights (as he sees them) are not respected.
Firstly, he couldn't be further from the truth.  We won't fight the government ONLY for our Second Amendment rights.  Our founding fathers often made reference to the need to balance the government, and the only way to do that is with an armed citizenry.  Again, the goal is not to go out looking for this lack of respect, it's to respond when our rights are violated.  It's a reaction to an offense, not the initiation of offense.

Lastly, and what I find most amusing, is that he is a professor of poetry.  While I would try to avoid name-calling and such, I figure 'he started it' so I might as well make the comment demanding to be made.  That isn't the sort of profession which is very 'manly' anyway.  I think he has some pretty perverse ideas of what manhood is all about.  He chooses to ignore logical reasoning and the consequences of living in the real world to defend his own fear of inanimate objects.  Not the behavior of any real man I know.

I firmly believe that only people who have knowledge and understanding about a topic should be published addressing said topic in such a fashion, as his complete lack of understanding about the firearms community, and what it means to be a man, makes him look exceedingly foolish, and is a heavy mark against the Post Gazette's credibility.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Upcoming Posts

Amidst the business of life, the being sick, the lighting a new set at church, the getting the car back after I was hit on the highway, and everything else that has been happening, I did manage to get my hands on a new holster.
I will have a full review with pictures and such shortly.  I have one minor issue with it which I'm going to attempt to contact the maker to see what he can do about it for me.  A friend of mine ordered one, had a 'customer ordered something then realized he should have ordered it differently' moment, and this guy had the customer service priority to get it resolved for him.
So, I'm hoping he can help out with my 'Huh, because I'm built like so, and want to wear my gun here, this is awkward, can you adjust it?'
Also, first deer-hunting event in many years for me coming up on Monday, so I'm gearing up for that.  I'll write that up as well next week after it's all said and done.
In the mean time, I hope you all have a fantastic Thanksgiving, and get to spend some time relaxing with your loved ones.

Be safe, and as Weer'd says, Carry your guns!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Bullet Hit the White House


So according to the Secret Service the round which hit the glass is 'not associated with Friday's incident.'  This tells me it's two different happenings.  I've been nosing around on the web, and I'm unable to find any sort of ballistic information regarding the round which was found, or casings, or anything else.  If any has any info, or knows of any useful sources, please share!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Highway Shakedowns in TN - 4th Amendment is History


I'm not the first to write about this, nor will I be the last.  In fact, this isn't even my first post on the topic.  Cemetery had his car searched for no reason, and is left with little recourse.  The governments are finding more and more ways to get around the protections we have of our rights, and it is costing us dearly.  
And clearly, if you watch the video, you can see that they do not care one iota about actually stopping the drugs.  They are focused on the cash.  If this really was about the drugs, there would be many more instances on the East bound side, and the officers would be facing that direction, looking for the contraband.  
The war on drugs has done more to damage this country than most people realize.  Daily it's costing us more and more, not just financially, but in far more important ways.  
But some people have hired lawyers after their cash was taken and, sometimes after months and months of litigation, judges have ruled that the money that was taken from them really had nothing to do with drug dealing at all.
Moral of that story is that if you want your money, you need to hire a lawyer to get it back.  They will keep it until you take legal action.  That is outright THEFT from civilians, especially when those civilians are charged with no crime, and have done nothing to justify that seizure of their property.
When do we draw a line in the sand which shall not be crossed?  To allow them to continue to trample our rights is to invite tyranny into our nation, not just turn a blind eye to it, and pour it a nightcap before we go to bed, ignorant of the schemes of tyrants.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Taxation without representation!


Pennsylvania is at it again.  There has been talk about this, and I understand why.  However, any tax added without it being passed through the legislative and executive branches is unenforceable.  I'll be curious to see if they do start attempting to enforce this, how well it holds up in court when the population of PA objects, and files suit.

We're already in a bad economy, and some nitwit bureaucrat thinks it's a good idea to increase the tax burden on the citizenry.  When will they grasp that this form of idiocy is NOT the answer?

Which wrong(s) make a man guilty?

In my perusing of news reports, I came across this gem.  Clearly this individual was 'up to something' in this scenario, but what justified the move by police to intercept him in the first place?  Also, notice on which events the Washington Post places more weight.  It isn't the fact that he's already committing a crime by possessing a controlled substance.  It's not even the fact that he had a firearm on school property.  No, they mention and emphasize FIRST his activities as a 13 and 15 year old kid.
His age at time of arrest?  26.  That's 11 years.  11 years of no (mentioned) charges.  11 years of being a productive member of society.  (Or at least not being a drain on the system, from what we're able to tell.)
From the story:
Magistrate Judge Mark D. Clarke said the weapons and the books, each by themselves, did not make Amoroso a danger. But taken together — along with his arrest at age 15 for shooting a pellet gun at a passing boat filled with tourists on the Rogue River, and writing on a classroom desk at 13 that he wanted to kill teachers and students — there was enough evidence to show he posed a danger.
Is it really that difficult a concept to consider that someone participating in a sport is going to take it seriously, do research, purchase equipment, and the like?  I know hunters who consume sniper-related material like water, simply because it's a passion for them.  The challenge of learning how to make shots which seem impossible, the tricks and tools used to calculate the ballistics, and other factors readily turn this into an exciting hobby for many.  
So the magistrate judge and the post both look to this person's past.  What makes it so hard to believe that a 13 year old boy would feel anger toward other students and teachers?  Perhaps he was bullied, or had bad grades and was frustrated.  Perhaps he was just a normal kid, who made the mistake of writing what he was thinking.  And that was half his life ago.  
So let's move up a few years, find something more recent.  He was a 15 year old with a toy pellet gun.  15 year old kids aren't known for making the best choices across the board.  It might have been beneficial to him to have had somewhat 'closer adult supervision' than he had that day.  But again, once incident, shooting pellets at a boat, and years later it's being brought up as a sign of how dangerous he is.
It's not until they go through all this that they bother to discuss the crimes he was ACTUALLY COMMITTING at the time of his arrest.  These are plenty reason to lock him up for a while, and press charges.  While I absolutely understand the logic behind eliminating the war on drugs, and legalizing them for various reasons, that isn't the reality in which we live.  As such, his possession of drugs is a viable, legitimate charge.  As is his possessing a weapon on school property.  Again, I understand the reasons for wanting that foolish law repealed as well, and I whole-heartedly support that movement.  But that's not reality.  The law is still there, so it is still a crime.  But they still can't, in their biased minds, differentiate between the actual crimes, and perceived crimes:
Police found a loaded pistol, hundreds of rounds of rifle ammunition, marijuana, a camouflage jacket, and a novel about a sniper attack on a football game in his car.
What about having rifle ammo in his car is so bad, especially when the only firearm found in the vehicle is a handgun?  What about a jacket that happens to be a certain color scheme is so terrible?  Why is possessing a book so evil?  Should we burn all books that mention the word 'sniper' or 'gun' to protect people?  Are we really at that point?
I get that adding all this up, the guy looks suspicious, and frankly he's a bit of an idiot for his behavior, but let's not start a witch hunt over perceived wrongs.  Let's focus on what he ACTUALLY did, and let the justice system do it's job.  There are enough straw men around, we don't need to be building more out of excessive paranoia.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Theif or Victim to blame?


Alan is exactly right.  The blame for guns being stolen lies with no one but the criminal performing the act of theft.  That would be like saying someone who had their car stolen is to blame for not putting their car in a safe.  Someone who had their jewelery stolen is to blame for not wearing all of their jewelery all the time.  This makes no logical sense whatsoever.  
Anytime you hear anyone suggest that there is any fault whatsoever with a gun owner for a theft of their weapon, remind them of the first rules of logic, and direct them to understanding that the victim is the victim, and the criminal is the criminal, not the other way around.

Bear in mind this is Australia, and their numbers are different than ours.  Specifically they are more alarming, and look worse.  And that's with the excess rules, laws, and regulations regarding firearms ownership.  

Friday, October 28, 2011

Hangun Ban Support Graph - 50 Years of Positive Trending


This should be obvious by now, but we are clearly making significant headway in the public realm.  Especially see the first graph. 

For the past 50 years, we have been making positive headway with people understanding that they should not infringe on the right to own firearms.  It is becoming common sense, and accepted logic that freedom is the way to go. 
Let's keep the pressure on the antis, let's keep making their jobs more difficult, and let's keep working toward more freedom, and the ability to protect ourselves and our loved ones!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Privatization Report!


Finally, a report on the privatization of the sales of alcohol in PA.  This is one of the best things possible for the state to do at this point.  The profits of the PLCB have been in decline recently, and their overhead and government-style control have been having nothing but negative effects on the process.
We've needed this for a long time, and it's finally being taken seriously.
One thing I have to laugh about are the unions, touting their usual ignorance and anti-freedom propaganda.  For instance:
Mr. Young also argued that the report all but ignores the negative impact that privatization, which could eliminate up to 5,000 state jobs, would have on the state's economy.
Mr Young clearly either is biased and WANTS government control, or he is a clueless buffoon who doesn't grasp simple math. 
The report suggests selling off 1,500 licenses, which in Philadelphia would quadruple the number of retail outlets from the current 55 stores to 219.
So, to quadruple (or in the case of the Pittsburgh area, only double) the number of licenses, means that many more stores.  If we quadruple around the state, and the stores all higher a 1-1, that's 20,000, if we only double, that's 10,000 jobs.  So, splitting the difference, we're looking at  possibly 15,000 jobs.  Now that's not a scientific calculation, it's just simple logic. 

Mr. Young, if you are sincere in your concern about jobs for the people, why don't you support an idea which will provide jobs for 3 times as many jobs as there currently are?  I challenge you to stand for jobs and economic growth, and do the right thing, rather than selfishly fighting to keep only a few jobs for just your closest friends!

Treating the 1st Amendment the Same as the 2nd Amendment


I don't really have anything to add to Bob's writeup here.  It's a great read, and a great comparison of our rights. 

Thanks, Bob, keep the good stuff flowing!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Hermain Cain - Presidential Material?


I know my readers are intelligent enough to find this video if they are motivated to do so, I do not want a direct link from my blog to her. 
I'm listening to a broadcast by Rachel Maddow on MSNBC in which she is viciously attacking Herman Cain.  Her problems with him include being associated with Americans for Prosperity, seeing a disproportionate number of times he encounters the number 45 in his day to day life, and some other random things.  
In short, he notices a number appearing more often than others, so she calls him a numerologist, and compares him to Nancy Regan controlling President Regan's schedule based on astrological readings, saying that he is associated with the Koch brothers, and that he thinks David Koch is a patriot makes him crazy. 
But the most delicious bit of irony is when she said:
"Herman Cain was one of the public faces of Prosperity 101.  It is a workplace seminar program that business use to educate their employees about the dangers of things like health reform, and taxes on millionaires, and regulations on businesses.  So your boss tells you to sit through this lecture, you sit through the lecture, message received, your boss essentially just told you how to vote.  In other words this Prosperity 101 thing is another the Koch brothers are funding a means by which businesses can get their way politically.  Intimidate your employees into voting for your bosses interests too."

Emphasis mine above.  The irony is that this is exactly what the unions do.  They force their employees to attend 'educational' events which attempt to brainwash them to voting for the left.  They go so far as to make threats, and want to have a voter card for union members.  The unions take this concept to extremes which are inhumane and anti-liberty.  Yet an independent organization  which attempts to educate people about reality is touted as intimidation?  
Rachel, you really are living in your own fantasy world.  You need to either wake up and join the rest of society, or get off your soap box: You make yourself sound more and more unintelligent and uneducated every time your trap opens.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Learn from History


Clearly, either our president doesn't learn from history, or he does and he hates America and wants us to fail.  I'll let you decide that on your own.  Take a look at the article.  Here are some of the winning parts of it:

The revamped Home Affordable Refinance Program, which aims to avert foreclosures, is expected "to encourage new, lower-cost loans" to more homeowners who are paying more than the value of their properties, a senior administration official said ahead of Obama's Monday announcement. 
So we learned from history that you can't force banks to give loans to people who can't pay them, it will backfire.  Today, he wants to force banks to give out loans to people who are having trouble paying for them...

The three-year-old Home Affordable Refinance Program was supposed to allow refinancing for up to 125 percent of a home's value on mortgages owned or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, but has been stuck on tight eligibility rules, including excluding people with high credit scores or other attractive risk offers. 
Here we go again. Same plan, different names, different wording, different packaging, but same failed ideas that sunk us already.

The changes to the loan programs are specifically intended to bypass Congress, which is stalled on agreeing to new plans to increase jobs and jump-start the economy. But it won early support from Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer of California and Republican Sen. Johnny Isakson of Georgia. 
So, dodging congress.  That is the act of a dictator.  He might as well say, "What I want is what matters, forget checks and balances."  Also, Republicans, take note of the name of a traitor to the cause.  Sen. Johnny Isakson, from Georgia, way to go failing the people who voted you into office.

If people aren't outraged by the ego, the arrogance, the Marxist ways of this man, then we have fallen very far indeed from the America which once was so great.

TSA Expanding to Highways!


And here I always thought Tennessee was one of the free states.  This is absolutely disgusting.
Take a look at the article and video.  Then come back and tell me what you think about it.  Is there a reason for this?  Will it really benefit anyone?  Do we want to see lines of traffic on the highways that resemble the security lines in airports?  How many miles will we need to stop again and again and again?  How many other questions come to mind regarding this institution of oppression? 
I have no doubt that there are those who genuinely think this is 'for the best.'  But, anytime you restrict, remove, deter, subdue, or otherwise violate the individual person's liberty, you are losing the fight.  The very fact that the TSA exists, and keeps expanding it's roles, is proof that the terrorists are winning more every week, than they ever could have by waging outright war on us.

What ever happened to the America where I was raised?

Tuesday, October 18, 2011



Police calling in excessive force is nothing new these days.  It just happened again locally.  This time the civilian who experienced an overdose of justice is a 75 year old woman.  With a mental problem.  Who they know.

I understand that police officers need to take steps to protect themselves.  But, doesn't it seem strange to call out SWAT ("...a nearby special response unit...") for 1 lady?  It strikes me as a severe case of overkill, and it does nothing to give me confidence in those who are supposed to serve and protect us.

The really ironic thing is that I am well known as quoting Rule 37 from Schlock.


OK, so I hope to soon be back to posting regularly, if not daily, again soon.  The garage claims I will have my car back by early next week at the earliest, the house was closed on this past Friday, the crazy week at work has passed, and things are starting to settle again.  There are a few other things up in the air, but I'm not ready to discuss them here yet.

Stay tuned though, more excitement to follow!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


So, I'm still without a vehicle, looks like a week and a half to two weeks until the shop is able to complete repairs.  Being without a car is extremely difficult in this day and age. So I'm left with wandering the streets aimlessly....
I mean bumming rides off friends, borrowing cars, and acting pretty pathetic overall. 
That said, I expect posting will be a little light until then.  I've got some things in mind, and I'm going to try to get a couple posts up over the next two days.  There is a lot in my brain itching to get out.  So it is coming, just please be patient with me until I'm able to devote time to it again. 
Thank you all so much for your readership, it is greatly appreciated!

In the mean time, be alert, be thinking, and be safe.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Light Posting

My apologies, but I will not be posting much for a few days.
I was in a severe car accident.  While I am physically fine, I am suddenly facing more challenges than I prefer to face.  Getting to and from work without a car is difficult, let alone handling everything else I need to do. 
Oh well, time to tighten the ol' belt buckle, and get cracking!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Halal Meat (Islamic Version of Kosher, if you will)

My mother sends many emails my way which she thinks will interest me, or things that might cause me to be concerned, or any of a various number of reasons.  I really enjoy this aspect of our relationship, as it allows me to see some of her thoughts.  I don't often get to hear her thoughts, as my schedule is incredibly hectic, so this is an opportunity for me to 'see' what's on her mind.  Recently she sent me a forward which went on about how Halal meat is taking over at the grocer, and how we need to avoid it.  Initially, the writing felt like it was very fear-inspired, not logic-inspired. And I think most of you know me well enough to know that I'll dig into any topic.  If you want a copy of the email, mention so in the comments, along with your address, and I will send it your way.  For the sake of conserving space here, I will not include the text.

On the surface, I see what they are saying, and what the issue is.  I'm going to put my thoughts below in list form.

1 - We should in no wise support Islam.
2 - This is meat essentially offered to idols.
3 - There is nothing wrong with eating meat offered to idols.  (There is no such thing as an idol, only God is real.  1 Cor 8.)
4 - Politically I have issues with this happening.
5 - As a Christian I couldn't care less where my meat originates, as long as it is handled in a way which poses no threat to my safety.
6 - For the sake of my brother or sister who has a weaker conviction, I won't eat this halal meat if it would cause them to stumble. 

I will try to avoid it if I can, not out of religious obligation, but out of a two fold reason: to attempt to send the message to the grocers that they don't need to carry that product, and to not support financially the making of the meat.  That is where my conviction originates.  If a brother or sister would be uncomfortable knowing the meat was prepared by those actively worshiping a false god at the time of it's preparation, I will abstain from it as well.

A friend of mine who lived in Israel for a number of years had this to say when I chatted with him about this:
Besides, I had ground lamb and pork-free hard salami, both halal, that were INCREDIBLE

What are your thoughts about eating this meat?

1 Corinthians 8:4-7
1Co 8:4  Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one.
1Co 8:5  For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords,
1Co 8:6  yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him.
1Co 8:7  However not all men have this knowledge; but some, being accustomed to the idol until now, eat food as if it were sacrificed to an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Petitions Galore


The anti-rights lobby has established a 'ban private sale' petition with the White House.  They need to get 5000 votes for it to do any good.  They aren't close.

However, there are some petitions well worth signing, such as support of HR822, and some others.  Take a look, and if you feel so inclined, add your name to the petition.  I won't say you must, but I would recommend it.  Let's send a clear message to the executive branch that this is what we want!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Grandma is Willing to Protect her Own


Bob S. has a great write-up on this incident.  The short version is that there was a robbery, suspects were fleeing, one hid under her bushes, and regretted it.
Fortunately she did not need to actually employ deadly force to gain compliance from the suspect who made that mistake.  He immediately became polite, cooperative, and compliant when he realized that someone protecting their family is willing to do so without hesitation.  He clearly knew he was in the wrong (mentioned that 'the cops are looking for me'), and knew what he had to do to remain intact.
I would tip my hat, were I wearing one, to her, and hope she never is required to take such action again, while taking joy in the knowledge that she is willing and able if she is.
He makes this point, which is the fundamental point of self defense:
She didn’t go out looking for trouble but was ready when it came to her.
That is why we put forth the effort to arm ourselves.  Not to find trouble, but to handle it when it finds us.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

My Daughter's First Magazine

So, my daughter has fired a pellet gun before today.  Allow me to clarify that.  She held it, and I pulled the trigger, because she doesn't have the strength in her hand to squeeze the obnoxious trigger on it.  However, she has no problem squeezing the triggers on the actual firearms.

That said, check out the video below.  It's the last 7 rounds of her first magazine with a real pistol.  She's still a little over-eager, squeezes them off more quickly than she needs to fire them, and she tends to flinch.  But for a young lass on her first day, she's not doing too shabbily at all!

She's got some learning to do, but she's off to a good start.

And yes, I probably am biased.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

200 Murders - 1 Scandal or Is it the Fault of the Guns?


So, the AG in Mexico has basically said that 200 (at least) murders are the result (so far) of the Fast and Furious scandal.  Now, you and I both know that murderers will murder, with whatever weapon(s) is(are) available.  Weer'd has a great pile of examples.  It's an insignificant percentage of how many actual events like it happen, but it's the exact image of what we know to be true.  Murder isn't cause by guns.
So, my question is simple.  If we hold them to the same standard they claim when arguing with us, that being 'Guns cause death!' then what is the logical conclusion?

Step 1 - They allowed guns to be illegally trafficked across the border.
Step 2 - Those guns killed people.
Step 3 - Because it was the guns which committed the crime, the supplier(s) of the guns should be held accountable.  (After all, when someone robs a bank with a gun, it's the fault of the gun store who sold him the gun, or the firearms manufacturer, or ANYONE but the actual criminal.  He's the victim of the terrible evil of being a gun owner.  Even if he illegally owns that gun.)
Step 4 - The fault lies squarely with the DOJ and ATF.  No one else to blame, they forced the dealers to sell the guns in circumstances where they would otherwise not have made the sale, they forced the situation to fall into such a place that the weapons made it to their destination.  They hold all blame.  Not even the criminals who pulled the triggers share in that blame.

At least, that's what I'd be forced to think if I bought into the lies of the antis.  Instead, I see this scandal in a different light.

Step 1 - Normally law-abiding gun dealers were forced to break the law, their own policies, and have unethical business transactions with people with whom they would prefer not to do business.  They were forced into committing commerce against their will, as it were.
 Step 2 - Firearms purchased in these circumstances were allowed to cross an international border, violating a large pile of other laws, again at the behest of those who were pushing this agenda.
 Step 3 - The firearms were sold illegally in Mexico, to the cartels, violating yet more laws.
 Step 4 - The guns were then used in the commission of various crimes, by criminals, including murder.
So this is where my logic takes a turn from what they would espouse:

Prosecute the criminals.  Charge them with what they did, and move on.  In Mexico, that means prosecuting the murderers for murder.  Oh wait, those are the cartels that their own government has allowed to get to where they are.  The police there won't cross their paths.  So, looks like the murderers are walking.
But, where does that leave the DOJ and ATF here who facilitated, and even forced, this to be an issue?

Accessory to murder, for one.  Countless other laws, and international laws, were broken in this scandal.  Those responsible need to be held 100% accountable.  To do less is to tell the rest of the world that we don't care about justice, only agenda.  There are those who say we should send those responsible to Mexico to stand trial.  

I have two problems with that:
1 - The crimes they committed happened here in the States, not in Mexico.  We should not extradite people to other countries for crimes committed here.  They should be charged and prosecuted HERE for those crimes.
2 - We need to lead on the issue of holding those in power accountable.  Sending them off to be prosecuted elsewhere in no way demonstrates to a watching world that we are serious about being an ethical, upright, just nation.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Your Papers Please...or Voter Fraud Counter-Measures

 American's enjoy several unique options in life, which leads America to be a very unique place to live.  One of the options which has defined America throughout her history has been the right of the citizenry to vote.  This right has given the people a clear voice int he organization and execution of the government.  Well, it used to be clear.
It's no secret that over the last several decades accusations of fraud at the polling places, and in the counting afterward, have been rampant.  Chicago is notorious for having the dead turn out in droves to vote.  And this before we even really started considering the coming zombie apocalypse.  Maybe this is the origin?
What do we do with rampant accusations of voter fraud?  How do we protect the voice of the people?  How do we prevent a phony lip-service-only voting system like exists in much of the world from taking over here?

The below paragraph is how I initially worded it.  Bob S. from 3 boxes of BS has helped me to understand how I was wrong in my original statements.  After this paragraph is the updated version of it, corrected for accuracy and clarification.
Governor Perry in Texas instituted a voter ID check.  The concept is simple, and it seems to be effective.  "Prove you are a citizen, and you get to vote."
Now reads:
Governor Perry in Texas signed into law a voter ID check.  The concept is simple, and it seems to be effective.  "Prove you are who you say you are, and you get to vote."
I now return you to your regularly scheduled blogpost

However, there is some controversy.  There are two sides to every argument; this one, I think, has three.
  1. It's only fair to everyone else participating in the system that all people prove their eligibility to participate in the system.  It has to happen if the system is going to work the way it was intended to work.
  2. There's no need for it.  
  3. This bears too much of a concept of 'Your Papers Please' and is fundamentally opposed to what we as Americans hold to be dear.
Personally, I'm torn between options 1 and 3.  Option 2 I completely disregard, as I firmly believe SOMETHING needs to be done.  However, what that something is, I'm not entirely certain.  I lean toward option 1, as the concept of 'your papers please' is more along the lines of when people are traveling around and are being accosted by law enforcement without provocation or just cause.  Really, since when is 'subversive material' illegal in the US?  Last time I checked, reading material wasn't illegal.
This is different from those evils, and I think a necessary step to take to protect this nation.  There may be a better way to do it, and if there is, I'll be happy to entertain it.  While this is a right of the citizens of this nation to vote, the difference in this case is the citizens voting.  There must be a vested interest in the future success of this great land.  Illegals, the dead, and others have no vested interest in that success.
As Frank said regarding those who oppose this concept:  
"...make them carry the pro-voter fraud label as there is no — NO — logical reason to be against having to prove you can vote before voting other than that you are for voter fraud and think it will help your side."

Please, share your thoughts on this issue!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Knife in the Pocket


So, the concept is 'take the knife out of your pocket, and post a picture.'  Except, I have to ask 'which knife?'
To say I have 'many' is probably a fair assessment.  I like being able to get to a knife in any pocket in any position I happen to be sitting, in any vehicle or other restraint.
So, without further ado, here are the two which came out most quickly when I saw the meme:
The Tanto bladed knife I've had for more years than I can remember.  The other I picked up in 2009 while in San Francisco for business.  I especially like that one because of having the seat-belt cutter and window-breaker incorporated.  Very useful tool.

What is(are) in your pocket(s)?

Debt Reduction or Holding People Hostage?


After reading this, it's pretty obvious that the administration's plan is a combination of two things.
1 - Raising taxes by $1.5 TRILLION when the economy is already suffering tremendously (because that's always such a great idea).
2 - Holdng our troops hostage.  These men and women deserve so much, and O-nutjob would use them for political leverage? 

That doesn't even mention that the plan would cut medicare and medicade, the very thing he accused Republicans of wanting to do.  While I would be fine with eliminating social programs (HOW to eliminate, I'm willing to discuss, as we probably can't easily go cold-turkey), to make even hinting at touching these programs out to be an evil, then to proceed and actually do it yourself is as hypocritical as it gets. 
As a wise man once said, "If you want to know what the left is doing, look at what they are accusing the right of doing."

Life is Busy

This is more of a 'light posting' apology than anything else.  Life has become hectic!
I've been extremely busy with various things I'm working on with my fiance, not the least of which is planning a wedding and buying a house.  We started a new sermon series at church this weekend, which meant I had to spend some extra time getting the lights set for that, and the list goes on.
All that said, I'm planning to step up the posting again at some point in the near future.
Please bear with me, I am only human, after all!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Ataaaack Waaatch Part Deux - Joking Around


It's good to see that there is a post at the Washington Post ridiculing it as well.  Sure, they attempt to point out the 'motivation' and the 'good things' that will come of such a site.  But let's face it.  They know as well as we do that it's an attempt at censorship.  One which will ultimately fail.
Instead, it's like being on a battlefield, and our enemies have air-dropped a large supply of weapons and ammunition behind our lines.
As I said to a co-worker, the people know what he's trying to do, and won't stand for it.  Her response was that not everyone hates it, the people living on "government money" (our money) love it.  I then said 'Stop trying to depress me. I said people, not sheeple.'
Let's keep the joke going.  Toss comments and funny links here, share the best stuff you can find!
This video (sent to me by a friend) is priceless!

You Don't Deserve to Keep Your Money


The important quote is as follows:
“I’ll put it this way. You don’t deserve to keep all of it and it’s not a question of deserving because what government is, is those things that we decide to do together."
Just let that marinate in your brain for a while. 
You (the free US citizen) do not deserve (are not entitled to, have no right to, and have no obligation in your favor of having) to keep (possess, to do with what you will) all of it (the money you have earned by your hard work and effort)....
What else do we need to hear from the left before we understand that they HATE freedom, they HATE capitalism, and they HATE liberty?

Thursday, September 15, 2011

OC: Pros and Co...Well, Pros Anyway

Source (Weer'd has some fantastic posts.):

My first thought about any sort of carry is simple:
...The right of the people to keep and BEAR arms shall not be infringed.
 Emphasis mine.
Any restriction of carrying a weapon is infringing on the right of that weapon-holder to bear his or her arm(s).  There is no twisted logic or convoluted methodology of law-making which will ever change that.  Any restriction is an infringement.
All that said, the movement for open carry has been growing.  The people who are pushing this movement are making great progress for logic and reason.  The politicized results of their carrying openly are having the desired effect overall.
I have been OCing for years off and on.  There are times I prefer it for various reasons, from having pants on which are too tight to allow proper concealed, to other garments which won't allow for concealment, to knowing I'm going to be in a neighborhood in which I'd much rather not be.  The advantages of OC are many, and with a proper understanding of those advantages it provides for the safety of all individuals.  As Weer'd said, the stakes couldn't be higher.  Those of us who carry, do so following the letter of the law, because it only takes one mistake to be unable to properly defend ourselves and our loved ones going forward.
So, without further ado, a brief list of advantages of open carry:
  1. Crime-against-self reduction.  A criminal seeing that you have a firearm on your hip is less likely to attempt to make you a victim.
  2. Crime-against-others reduction.  A criminal seeing that you have a firearm on your hip is less likely to attempt to victimize someone else in your vicinity.
  3. Ease-of-access.  Typically drawing from concealment is slower than from open.  Obviously with proper training any timing differences can be mitigated.  However, in an 'all things equal' world, the lack of fabric between your hand and the grip of your sidearm, the faster you can bring it to bear, and put it to it's designated role.
  4. Comfort level.  When I am OC, it feels far more comfortable than when I am concealed.  I'm a bigger guy, so it's difficult to find that sweet spot which causes no discomfort whatsoever.
  5. Familiarity.  Allowing other people with whom you interact on a day to day basis to see that you are carrying a firearm, and at the same time you are NOT shooting people over parking spaces, or randomly shooting people, or any of the other evils the antis claim, is about the most positive press we can ever hope to have.
  6. Style.  There are a tremendous number of stylish, beautiful holsters being created today.  Personally, I am unable to find one, as it seems there isn't much market for my pistol of choice.  However, many weapons have many options for carrying, and with the right accessories, it can really compliment an outfit.
There are many many many more pros than this.  Share what pros you consider to be important, or key in your decision making process.  Do you OC daily, or just occasionally?  Are you prepared to deal with accidental OC?
Share your thoughts!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Attack Watch


This is a scary video.  Before I go any further, please take a moment to view it in it's entirety. 
So, I suspect this blog, among many many other blogs, will appear on this website.  Looks like it's time for us to lay low, and cling bitterly to our guns and Bibles.

Monday, September 12, 2011

9/12 - The Morning After

I thought long and hard about what to post yesterday.  I was fully intending to put aside my 'typically don't post on Sundays' habit and write something for the anniversary of the attacks against our nation.
But I couldn't bring myself to do it.
Why?  One simple question:  What has changed?
Sure I could talk about what I was doing, or how I felt, or what awakened in my understanding of the world around us.  I could go on for hours about what it felt like when I realized we are hated simply because we are free.  I could go into detail every minute of my day: Evacuation to talking to my friend in Army Ranger School at the time, to the trouble I had sleeping that night.  But the point is, it doesn't really matter.
When America awakened on 9/12, we all knew something was different.  We all realized we needed to change our outlook on the world around us.  We all knew that life would never be the same again.  What we didn't know was that we were going to do more harm to our own country than the combined efforts of every terrorist have done.
I know I typically write about freedom, firearms, and the like.  But today I'm going to temper that writing with something a little more faith-driven.  I've never attempted to hide the fact that I believe the God of the Bible, who sent His Son Jesus to pay the penalty for sin, and die a substitutionary death on the cross for us.  For me.
So what does that have to do with the events of the decade following this tragedy?  The answer is simple:  Everything.
I've learned much in the past decade, not the least of which being that those of us who have this faith have an obligation to lead people.  We are to the the ones holding the standard, encouraging people to continue on when it seems there is no hope.  We are the ones who are to be willing to give our lives for others, even strangers, because our eternal security is assured.  We are the ones who are to bring hope to those who don't see any, and joy to those who don't know her touch.
And we are to do it, not because of anything within ourselves, or because we are better than anyone else, or because we are supposed to do it.  We are to do it because greater is He who is in us than he who is in the world.  It's not our own power, it's not our own love, and it's not our own means.
So in the decade since that tragedy, while our rights have been being systematically stripped by an oppressive government bent on crushing the people, and we've watched loved ones giving their lives in an attempt to free others from the control of similar evil governments, we continue to stand.  We are called to be salt and light to a world in need.
Are we?  Are we taking those difficult stands, choosing the right path, even when our own nation seems to be turning completely against us?  Are we calling evil for what it is where we find it?  Are we prepared with an answer when people ask us questions, or attack us unjustly?  Are we ready to defend our faith with our minds and hearts?  Are we ready to reach a world in need?

Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Evils of Fire(arms)

Wizard's First Rule by Terry Goodkind (Amazon)

This is well worth the read.

   "And now, to the other part," Michael continued, "to the real suffering around us.  While we have worried about the boundaries that have not harmed a single one of us, many of our families, friends, and neighbors have suffered, and died.  Tragic and needless deaths, in accidents with fire.  Yes, that is what I said.  Fire."
    People mumbled in confusion.  Michael was starting to lose his bond with the crowd.  He seemed to expect it; he looked from face to face, letting the confusion build, and then dramatically he thrust his hand out, his finger pointing.
   At Richard.
   "There!" he screamed.  Everyone turned as one.  Hundred of eyes looked at Richard.  "There stands my beloved brother!"  Richard tried to shrink.  "My beloved brother who shares with me" - he pounded a fist into his chest - "the tragedy of losing our own mother to fire!  Fire took our mother from us when we were young, and left us to grow up alone, without her love and care, without her guidance.  It was not some imagined enemy from across a boundary that took her, but an enemy of fire!  She couldn't be there to comfort us when we hurt, when we cried in the night.  And the thing that wounds the most is that it didn't have to be."
   Tears, glistening in the sunlight, ran down Michael's cheeks.  "I am sorry, friends, please forgive me."  He wiped the tears with a handkerchief he had handy.  "It's just that only this morning I heard of another fire that took a fine young mother and father, and left their daughter an orphan.  It brought my own pain back to me and I couldn't remain silent."  Everyone was now solidly back with him.  Their tears flowed freely.  A woman put her arm around Richard's shoulder as he stood numb.  She whispered how sorry she was. 
   "I wonder how many of you have shared the pain my brother and I live with every day.  Please, those of you who have a loved one, or a friend, who has been hurt, or even killed, by fire, please, hold up your hands."  Quite a few hands went up, and there was a wailing from some in the crowd.
   "There, my friends," he said hoarsely, spreading his arms wide, "there is the suffering suffering among us.  We need look no further than this room."
   Richard tried to swallow the lump in his throat as the memory of that horror came back to him.  A man who had imagined their father had cheated him lost his temper and knocked a lamp off the table as Richard and his brother slept in the back bedroom.  While the man dragged his father outside, beating him, his mother pulled Richard and his brother from the burning house, then ran back inside to save something, they never knew what, and was burned alive.  Her screams brought the man to his senses, and he and their father tried to save her, but couldn't.  Filled with guilt and the revulsion at what he had caused, the man ran off crying and yelling that he was sorry.
   That, his father had told them fa thousand times, was the result of a man losing his temper.  Michael shrugged it off; Richard took it to heart.  It had instilled in him a dread of his own anger, and whenever it threatened to come out, he choked it off.
   Michael was wrong.  Fire had not killed their mother; anger had.
   Arms hanging limply at his side, head bowed, Michael spoke softly again.  "What can we do about the danger to our families from fire?"  He shook his head sadly.  "I do not know, my friends.
   "But, I am forming a commission on the problem, and I urge any concerned citizen to come forward with suggestions.  My door always stands open.  Together we can do something.  Together we will do something.
   "And now my friends, please excuse me, and allow me to go comfort my brother, as I am afraid bringing out our personal tragedy was a surprise to him, and I must ask his forgiveness."
Used with permission under the "fair use" tribute.
Now, re-read the entire story above, and add the word 'arms' after every instance of the word 'fire.'  Spooky, right?  Now, while doing that, focus on this line:
Michael was wrong.  Fire had not killed their mother; anger had.
Terry Goodkind is an excellent author, and I highly recommend the 'Sword of Truth' series.  Wizard's First Rule is the first book of the series.  The entire series has quite a few analogies such as this.  He brings up some fantastic questions, and uses basic, yet perfect, logic to resolve them.  Later in the series he discusses the fairness of taking what people have earned from the earners, and distributing it to those who do not earn. 
And yes, he was heavily influenced by Rand.

Chime in on your thoughts!  (Pun intended, for those who have already read the series.)

Friday, September 9, 2011

Jobs - Now in Brighter Packaging


I didn't bother listening to the speech last night.  I don't think I was anywhere that I could have even if I wanted to watch my blood pressure climb, and feel my pulse race.  That said, it seems to be the buzz today, getting the most attention from outmoded news media (newspaper, tv, radio, etc), as well as current, relevant news publications (such as blogs, online reporting, etc).  
While I am not an expert in things of economics, I do have a fair amount of common sense.  So I'm going to comment on some of the things I've read.
Under Mr. Obama's plan, the unemployed would see several additional programs to help get them back to work.
 When I  hear/read that, I can't help but think 'More spending, more government agencies, more cost to the people who do have jobs, more cost to the people who can create jobs.'  Government programs have a tendency of backfiring, or resulting in the opposite of their intent.

Meanwhile, employers would get a tax credit of up to $4,000 to hire people who have been out of work for more than six months, a move that would help level the playing field for the long-term jobless, said Rutgers economist Bill Rodgers.
The level playing field should not be forced based on an outside force.  It should be level to the people in the playing field.  Each person should succeed or fail by their own efforts.  If this goes into effect, it will have the result of people who see companies hiring those who are unemployed for a longer period of time choosing to spend  that time living off the government teet, and not being a productive member of society, opting rather to wait until they are part of the 'group' which gets special treatment.
As with the 2009 stimulus package, much of the proposed policy is directed toward the construction industry and the more than 1 million unemployed construction workers in America.
Again, special treatment for one group of people.  Rather than focusing on the root problems, and how they impact the entire economy and nation, this package seems to be carefully directed at specific people.  That sounds a LOT more like a campaign strategy, or a vote-winning strategy, than a 'fix the problem' strategy to me.
The plan would put $30 billion into renovations at schools and community colleges, $50 billion into the modernization of roads, airports, waterways and railroads, $15 billion into "Project Rebuild," a program that refurbishes vacant and foreclosed homes and $10 billion into financing for a national infrastructure bank that would use both public and private investment to finance infrastructure projects. Mr. Obama said these initiatives would create "hundreds of thousands" of jobs.
So, rather than taking steps to increase the availability of jobs overall, this will focus on specific, short-term jobs which may or may not last once the indicated projects are done.  
Mr. Obama's plan would cut payroll taxes in half for up to the first $5 million in wages businesses pay and offer a $4,000 tax credit to companies that hire long-term unemployed. It would also extend the so-called "100% expensing," which allows firms to take an immediate 100% tax deduction on capital investments, an incentive that would otherwise expire at the end of the year.
Two out of three ain't bad, right?  Anytime taxes are cut, especially taxes which can be seen directly relating to the number of employees, will always benefit job growth.  So he's got that part right.  But why stop at $5 million?  Why not make it across the board?  Additionally, the ability to write-off capital investments is extremely beneficial to the economy, as it removes some of the burden of that type of expenditure.  The removal of that burden gives more willingness to  the companies to spend the money, which provides work for other companies, and more jobs overall.  But, again, see above regarding the tax credit for hiring long-term unemployed.  
Still, because the proposed tax breaks are temporary, their effectiveness in creating hiring will be blunted, said Bill Rys, tax counsel at the National Federation of Independent Business, a small-business association.
So make those tax incentives permanent.  

As of right now, I see nothing in what I've been able to find which gives me any confidence that this plan will have a positive, lasting impact.  There are steps here which will help, but only if taken to their logical conclusion.  The rest is just another stimulus package, and more 'spreading of the wealth.'  
If the purpose of the money being given for these projects is job creation, how about a tax refund to everyone equally based on what they paid?  Match that with permanent tax cuts, and you'll see job growth.  Anything less than that is merely lip service for the purpose of garnering votes.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Setback for Freedom in VA Court


The court ruled that the federal government has the power to FORCE the citizenry to purchase health insurance. 
This is just one more loss we face as we attempt to fight to keep the American way of life intact.  The very concept of a government forcing it's citizens to participate in any activity is as tyrannical as it gets.
It also appears the VA court thinks the federal government can undermine the state's own laws.

Sadly, no Debate Update

Due to my schedule conflicting with the schedule of the Debate (really, why didn't someone tell them I was busy, and would be unable to watch?) I was unable to watch the debate this time.  As such, no update on the debate.  If I'm able to find the entire video, audio, or transcript, I will toss some commentary out there.  If you happen to know where I can get any of the above, please drop me a link.
Thanks folks!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

The TSA is Evil


DISCLOSURE:  This post and the link contain graphic descriptions of non-consensual  sexual encounters.  Not appropriate for all ages.

I highly recommend reading this entire article.  I also highly recommend offering any support you are able to Amy.  She did what every one of us who has flown under the TSA should do.  This gradual taking of more power by them, and more denial of our rights needs to stop, and be reversed.  The TSA needs to be disbanded.  They are an evil organization, which takes pleasure in using what little authority it has to sexually assault US citizens, and pays it's employees to do that. 
Not only is that rape, but it's inverted prostitutional rape.  Yes, I made up a word and phrase.  But think about it.  When someone pays for sex, it is prostitution.  When someone is sexually assaulted, it's rape.  When someone is paid to rape someone else, it becomes a new issue all together. 
Don't believe me?  Just ask any of the women who have had fingers and hands pushed "...between their labia."  Ask any of the men or boys who have had their penises grabbed.  This is legalized rape.  This is the dehumanization of the citizens of the USA.
The TSA is a criminal, evil organization and must be stopped.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

At Least He Shot Himself For Us


Yet another example of the police and law enforcement agencies being too slow to react.  After a shooter shoots people and himself, they arrive.  After the threat is neutralized, they shut down a street.  After ________ they _________.  Fill in those blanks with pretty much anything you want.  We see this in case after case, instance after instance.
If the police existed to prevent crime, this discussion would never happen.  however, they are a reactionary force, not a preemptive force.  They are unable to prevent this sort of thing.  \
I don't know anything about the shooter at this point, if he was high, if he had mental problems, if he was an escaped con out to get the world, or if he was a normal Joe who snapped, or what.  At the end of the day, that doesn't matter.  What matters is that no one there took the action to stop him.  It could be that none of them was armed, or it could be that he already shot those who were.  What will you do if you're confronted with such a situation?
This is why it's important for us to take our safety seriously, and responsibility for ourselves, and not rely on others for it.

Blog publishing post

Just tossing a unique code out to the interwebs.  Please keep moving.


Busy Weekend

I had a very busy Memorial Day weekend.  It included interviews for reception halls for a certain upcoming event, as well as the other party of said event putting an offer on a substantial investment.

What did you do this weekend?

Friday, September 2, 2011

What Does it Mean to be Aware of Your Surroundings


I have always made it a special point to be alert to my surroundings.  We have a responsibility to ourselves and to our loved ones to be aware of danger, alert to trouble, and the like.  This can be exhausting, if you don't apply your methods correctly.  
To use the definitions used here I have personally primarily used a combination of two levels of awareness: 
1 - Relaxed Awareness - when in places where I spend most of my time, and it's easy to be alerted to something being out of place.  The office, the house, church, etc.
2 - Focused Awareness - when in places where I am not familiar, and as such things out of place are less likely to stand out to me, as 'everything' is out of place by my perspective.  New settings, new city, job interviews, special social occasions, and public areas which change frequently due to layout and visitor changes such as malls, restaurants, stores, garages, and the like.  
I have constantly encouraged this concept (though not worded nearly so well, or so detailed) to my loved ones.  
In what level of awareness do you typically find yourself?  Do you pay attention to what's going on around you?  Would you be taken by surprise if someone unexpected walked in the office?  Would you be unable to react if you witnessed a mugging while shopping?  Would you see that box sitting somewhere that it shouldn't be?  
It's very easy to be aware of what is going on around you without draining yourself.  I encourage you to try!

Idiocy Begets Idiocy


I always enjoy reading a solid refutation of idiocy.  Simple logic, common sense, and any ability to reason more than a mouse will lead to the logical conclusion that restricting freedom does not lead to safety.  Quite frankly, it leads to the opposite.
I have always found it rather telling as well that so often their arguments are either unsupported by any statistic, or they simply repeat the same things they hear within their own circles day after day.  It's the old adage that if you tell a lit often enough you'll start to believe it.
Take a look through the post, follow the links to the data, and smile to yourself as you gain even more firepower to use in the war for freedom.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Privatize the PA LCB?

I'd love to see the LCB privatized for more reasons than I can count.  The biggest are as follows:

1 - Why does our government think it's a good idea to sell it's citizens something?
2 - Broader selection and variety.
3 - Lower prices.
4 - The ability to order wines from around the world, and have them shipped to your home.  (Other drinks as well, not just wines.)
5 - Opens the door to transporting across state lines and not violating any laws in the process.

The list can go on, but these are the most important aspects of this effort.  So please, if you live in PA, and care about freedom, contact the president of the state senate here, and ask that he move the liquor privatization bill forward:

Turns out Sebastian talks about it as well.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Ugliness Gets a Handout


Before I go any further, I accept without any hesitation that I am ugly.  Those of you who know me understand this to be true.  

The first thing I wish to mention is a fairly simple, yet profound, question that begs answering:  What makes ugly people more deserving of special treatment than attractive people?  The entire point of the American system is that we are all created equally, and as such no one deserves any special treatment over any others.  To say someone deserves special treatment for any reason is to say that they are a lesser person.  That's one of the largest issues I have with the concept of affirmative action.  By it's very nature, it's encouraging the thought that those benefiting from the program are lesser humans, and as such deserve more than the rest of the human race.

There are several excellent questions surrounding this issue which would need to be addressed as well.  Who determines ugliness?  Would there need to be yet another bureaucracy established for the purpose of determining that?  What will it do to the psyche of the people who are deemed ugly?  What method of qualification will there be?  Where will that line be?  What about the people who fall just on the fair side (pun intended) of the line? 

Once we get past those questions, we get into the social ramifications, the bitterness created between yet another two classes of people, more division between Americans, and the like.  If I'm offered a job because I'm ugly, how unfair is it to someone who is far more qualified, but is just too pretty?  Or too white?  Or too young? Or too healthy?  This is just more classism being created to drive wedges between the people of this land, and destroy any semblance of unity.  Quinn speaks of classism frequently, and has some excellent thoughts.  

How do you feel about the ugly class?  Do you hate us?  Do you want to see us be given a chance to get ahead?  Please share your thoughts.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Personal Experience: Kayak Trip Gone Wrong (And how the Anti's are Wrong Again!)

On 8/20 I took a group of 14 of my friends on a kayak trip in Western PA, a place called 'The River's Edge'.  I've not worked with them in the past, but had read some good things about them.  To get the full story, we need to go back about a week prior to the trip.
I had sent an email to a different outfitter (further upstream, along the same river) that I have used in the past with a great experience, and left a voicemail to make a reservation.  Several days after both of those were sent, I received an email from them that they were booked for that day, and would be unable to meet my needs.  So, I found another outfitter (River's Edge) and made a reservation there.   I did this after reading several comments online stating that people had great experiences with them.
We arrived in time to get setup, sign the waivers, load the shuttle, etc and have plenty of time left to get to the put-in.  When my kayak ('my' meaning 'owned by me, brought from home to the outfitter) it was loaded on the bottom of the trailer.  I normally would have no issue with this, however there was a missing fender on that side.  One of my friends also pointed out the obvious issue, and I went over to inspect it.  When I asked the gentleman loading the boats onto the trailer, he said 'The straps will hold it, and it will be fine.'  I pushed my boat toward the center of the trailer, and it seemed as though he was right, I was able to push it several inches away from the exposed wheel.
Upon arriving at the put-in, we hopped out of the van, I walked around behind to the trailer, and my heart dropped.  I saw this:

I saw this hole, and realized that not only had the straps NOT held my kayak in place, but it had shifted, and laid on top of the tire.  The friction generated by the tire rubbing against the boat was sufficient to burn a hole clean through the boat.  Obviously this kayak is completely ruined.  The bodies do not lend themselves to repair of this sort of damage, and it is clearly not water-worthy as is.
I was upset.  One friend took my fiance aside immediately as she exited the second shuttle which arrived behind ours, and told her she needed to speak to me right away, and it was urgent.  She looked at me across the parking area, and realized something was wrong.  Her calming influence was sufficient to prevent me saying anything terrible, or making a total fool of myself.
One of the co-owners of the outfitter was in that second shuttle, and the fellow who had loaded my kayak so terribly pulled her aside before I was able to talk to her.  He explained what happened, and took her around to show her the damage.  Not only did the tire destroy the side of my boat, it also destroyed my bilge pump.
They returned to their store-front in order to get a boat for me to use for the day, and brought it back.  We waited about an hour for that to happen.  I had told my friends to get started, as they should not lose time on the water, and enjoying the beautiful day because of my problem.  Without exception, they all said they'd wait for me.  They are awesome people.
When the outfitter returned they had a boat for me to use, and a bilge pump as well.  I helped everyone else get into the water, loaded my loaner, and off we went for a day of floating down the river.
Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves well, and I tried to as much as I could under the circumstances.  The highlight of the day was finding a rope swing, and having a blast swimming and falling into the water.  Ironically the youngest people on the trip, and one of the oldest were the ones to enjoy it most.  I did not trust the rope, the platform, or anything else there with my weight.  The others seemed to have no problems with it.
When we returned to the shop, I went to see the owners.  They were both surprised that such a thing had happened, they'd never had a problem in their 5 years of providing livery service.  They did, however, make it right.  They offered to pay me what it would cost to replace the boat.  Without going into the details on that end, they did send me a check for the cost of the boat I had, plus shipping and tax, so I am now able to replace the kayak I had with an identical boat.
They made it right.  I received the check 1 week to the day after the incident, and while the time without a boat is going to be frustrating and aggravating, I do understand that things in life DO happen, and we have to deal with issues as they come up.  They handled themselves professionally, and provided me with fair remission for the incident.  They made it right, and I look forward to doing business with them again, probably next season at this point, as it will be some time until I'm able to receive my new kayak (3-4 weeks minimum delivery time, according to the website).
On a side note, and because I have to get politics involved, I have to point out one thing in this:  The antis are wrong.  According to those who would restrict our freedoms, and take our guns, as soon as someone becomes even slightly upset about something, and they are armed, there will be bloodshed on the streets.  People will shoot each other over parking spaces, traffic jams, and the like was something we heard often recently.  Here in PA we heard it recently because of the Castle Doctrine passing.  We heard people saying such things as a method of using fear to attempt to get their way.
When I saw what happened to my boat, that someone else destroyed it through their own ineptitude, I was angry.  The fact that my property was damaged beyond use, and that my investment of money, time, effort and everything I put into that boat was gone, because of one person's mistake, I felt angry.  I wasn't just angry, I was downright livid.  I also had one of my firearms on me.
Not once did the thought of drawing my weapon ever enter my mind.  Not once did the thought of causing injury to anyone else enter my mind.  Not once did any of the things which the left and the antis claim will happen in that scenario even enter into the mind of the person in that situation.
Not once.
Sounds to me like I had more reason to be upset than over a parking space, and it also sounds to me like they are so far off base with their ideas that gun owners are violent people looking for a reason to start killing that they can not relate with ordinary people.
The important lesson to take from all this?  Be involved when someone else is handling your property, and point out issues, and don't be afraid of expressing your concerns.  At best you avoid the headache I have had, at worst you have a falling out with whomever is handling your property, and have to find a resolution.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Zo is no Dummy


I've enjoyed AlfonZo Rachel for a while.  He has a great sense of humor, and watching him stand for his faith, and what he knows to be true about our history, and conservative values is fantastic.  He's gone after the black community as a member of it, pointing out so many of their bad choices, mostly due to believing the lies of the left.  It is well worth watching his archives to better understand what I mean.
This particular episode is from a little over a month ago (7/19/11).  The best part is his correct interpretation of 'Render unto Caesar' which he explains shortly after 3:30.
In this particular video, he is destroying the concept of income tax, and pointing out why it's such a bad idea, why the founding fathers did NOT include it in the constitution, the questionable ratification of the 16th amendment, etc.  It's classic Zo, saying exactly what's on his mind, and pulling absolutely no punches.  My hat is off to you, sir!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Tased Man Awarded Damages


I live far too close to this city for my comfort.  The short version of the story is that a police officer used excessive force, a jury found in his favor, but yet he was only awarded a couple hundred dollars compensation for it. 
The man had to go to the hospital, and we all know how cheap that is.  This is insanity.  Get me out of here.

Part of a Greater Whole


When I started this blog, all I knew was that I had a lot to say about various things.  As I started writing more, I learned what grabbed my attention most often, and ran with it.  Today, I consider this blog to be a mashing of several topics, but primarily Liberty, Politics, and Firearms.  It's only over the last several weeks that I've come to realize just how many other people are passionate enough about these topics.  It's intimidating to try to read everyone.
Last night I attempted to read all the 'current' posts listed on the Black List.  I fell asleep long before I get far into it.  The worst part, I felt badly about it.  This community is filled with people who have a passion for these things, and really understand what it means to be American.  And as I look through this list, and find other similar blogs, I realize how much of an honor it is to be included in such company.  At the same time, I am also humbled and a little intimidated as there are people far more talented, many who have been writing far longer, and those who are able to find stories and information far more efficiently than I am.
Weer'd says it best:
Meanwhile Gun Blogs you simply have to play favorites, because there is too much for any one person.
 The opposite side of the issue (I would say the "wrong" side of the issue) seems to have the opposite problem.  Take a look at the information Weer'd provides.  Quite enlightening, and frankly a bit amusing.  I know it's not polite to laugh at the expense of someone else; but sometimes I just can't help myself.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Blog List

I have finally joined the 2000's and added a list of the blogs I read daily in the sidebar.  There are a few others I read less regularly, but there's a reason these blogs are in the bookmark folder called 'daily.' 

I hope you all enjoy them as much as I do!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Unusual Holster Design


First, let me clearly state that I am no expert of holsters.  I have (shamefully) tended to stick to cheaper holsters (Hello, Uncle Mike's), and of quality holsters, I've tended toward the cheap end.  However, I understand VERY well the concept of a holster.  The accepted definition is fairly simple and straightforward:  a sheathlike carrying case for a firearm, attached to a belt, shoulder sling, or saddle.  I would modify that definition by making this simple change:  a sheathlike device used for SAFELY carrying a firearm....

The goal of carrying a sidearm is to do so safely.  When one is armed, one must take reasonable precautions to verify that they are not taking foolish risks with their safety.  It's not very difficult to imagine a circumstance in which an object (arm of a chair, wooden dowel rod, etc) can apply pressure inside the trigger guard when it is only covered by a layer or two of clothing.  

I also have serious issues with inserting anything which doesn't belong into the end of the barrel.  It sounds like they attempted to make it a material which will do no damage, and it certainly sounds more delicate than the cleaning brushes I tend to use.  However, that is only done as needed, and only for a short time.  The motions which my body performs on a daily basis (walking, sitting, standing, laying, driving, breathing) will all cause motion in the pants.  This means more friction, more rubbing, and a greater possibility that it will cause damage.

Overall, while this is a very interesting concept, and I am definitely a minimalist when it comes to holsters, I do not think this is a good idea as is.  There are a couple variations which might make me more comfortable with it, however as it stands, I'd not want to carry my sidearm with it.

Union Thugs - Making Life Interesting

I received the e-mail alert below yesterday at work.  Names and locations have been altered to protect the innocent.

Picketers on [Company's Name] Road

We are aware that Glazier’s Local Union 751 is picketing today on public property along [Company Name] Road, near the entrances to Building 1, 2 & 3 and 4, 5 & 6.  Our understanding is the union is protesting a subcontractor's use of nonunion personnel to renovate some buildings on campus.  We respect the union’s right to gather and picket on public property.  [Company Name] is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate in employment and personnel practices on the basis of race, sex, age, handicap, religion, national origin or any other basis prohibited by applicable law.

Please refrain from engaging with picketers, and exercise caution as you enter and exit onto [Company Name] Road, as always.
Any safety or security concerns should be reported immediately to [Company Name] Security  at xxx-xxx-xxxx.

So, here I am, a lowly office drone when I see this e-mail.  My initial thought when I saw the headline was that someone was protesting some product or other that we manufacture.  Then I realized it's picketers, not protesters.   So when I read it, and realized it's a union thing, I couldn't help but laugh.  My company didn't not hire unions (intentional double negative), they hired a subcontractor who did not hire unions.  This is so that they could compete with other offers, and actually get the work done at an affordable price to us.

The part that really boggles my mind, however, is that a local union group would come protest that.  If your unions didn't artificially raise the cost of doing business the way they do, and understood the importance of a free market, you would have actual work to do, perhaps even here on our campus.  Instead, you get to go hold signs outside a business that couldn't care less about your petty squabbles, making yourselves look like nitwits who have nothing better to do than...well...stand around holding signs, annoying people. 

When will the unions realize that they have outlived their usefulness, and at this point are merely just digging their own graves deeper?  I absolutely understand the importance for the unions to have been formed when they were, and that they served a wonderful purpose.  However, laws in America have been changed, and there is such a foundation of precedent in court for employees rights that I would say the effort and intent of unions was a success long ago.  Since that has been the case, they have done nothing to better the system, and have begun to have a negative impact instead. 

Maybe we should all picket union shops, and demand that they go away.    Oh, right, the rest of us have jobs we have to do.