Wednesday, 31 May 2017

08:43 – It was 62.8F (17C) when I took Colin out around 0645 this morning, blindingly sunny. As usual, Colin immediately headed for the back fence to check on his cattle.

Ordinarily, if the cows are at least 10 or 15 meters away from the fence, Colin ignores them and they ignore him. This morning, they were right up at the fence, so he stalked down towards them until he was close enough to do his pounce-bark routine to drive them further away from his fence. But this morning, for the first time, there was a courageous cow, a young one about 3/4 normal adult size, and about 20 meters back from the fence. As Colin stood silently watching it, it noticed him and ambled over towards him. Colin was standing with his snout right at the fence wire, and the cow walked over until it was snout-to-snout with Colin. He finally couldn’t take it anymore and did a ferocious pounce-bark, at which point the cow just stood looking at him for several seconds before it turned and ambled away.

As I was scanning the recently added list on Amazon Prime video last night, I noticed a three-episode homesteading series on soap making. The episodes were only a few minutes, so I watched the first one. Nothing new there; saponification has been around for thousands of years, and the only new thing in the video was that the lady used a silicone bread pan as a mold. She didn’t go into the chemistry of it. She said lye was an acid. Okay.

But I decided to see what else was out there so I did a Roku search for “homesteading”. It came up with a lot of hits, one of which was the Homesteading Channel. They really do have a channel for everything nowadays. So I checked that out.

One of the series was called Life on the Big M Ranch, so I fired up the first episode. It started off well enough, with a bearded young man wearing a t-shirt with a stylized Spartan hoplite silhouette and “Molon Labe” beneath it in Greek letters. That by itself would have told me the family were probably preppers, even if the intro hadn’t mentioned preparing for the “fertilizer to hit the fan”.

The family involved is the Mize family from Easley, SC, about four hours southwest of us. Parents Brian and Tammy, in the 40’s, older son Houston, in his early 20’s, daughter-in-law Dana, also early 20’s, and daughter Kindall, in her early teens. They’re all nice people, the kind of people who could just as easily be our next-door neighbors.

They decide to abandon the rat race and consumer/debt society and relocate to 50 acres in upstate SC, near the NC border. So they buy two 200 square foot (20 square meter) trailer homes, plop them down on their newly-purchased acreage, and go to work building a new life. They keep their current jobs in town for now, because they need the income, but they focus on getting completely out of debt and getting all their important stuff moved to the farm so they can get their house on the market. None of them has any experience whatsoever in farming, handling livestock, and so on, so they have to learn as they go.

I found the early episodes very interesting. Unfortunately, the later episodes started to lose focus. Dana became the face of the Big M Ranch, with the rest of the family appearing very infrequently. So I bagged that and started watching the other multi-episode series on that channel, which was about two families building a homestead in the Ozarks. I bagged that one after Season 1 Episode 1, which was an extended sales pitch for overpriced “survival food”.

Barbara called last night to check in. She’s having a great time. Only three more days until she gets back. The people are supposed to show up today to install the drop ceiling downstairs.

 

 

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66 Responses to Wednesday, 31 May 2017

  1. Dave says:

    @RickH,

    How goes the work on the new version of Pournelle’s reading program? My six year old daughter has now finished kindergarten and is not yet a reading prodigy, so I’m interested.

  2. Nick Flandrey says:

    I’m discovering that the current crop of youtube creators are doing a very good job indeed. They are best when focused pretty narrowly, and passionate about that focus. I watch some that have only a few hundred to a couple thousand subscribers, and a couple that have nearly 100k subs. There is about a 10:1 ratio of subs to watches on most of the channels where I’ve noticed.

    Youtube and cheap cameras and some open source software are making it easy to self publish in the video world.

    I watch a couple hours a night of very focused hobby stuff, and have watched very little traditional TV this year. We don’t even watch movies except with the kids, and I haven’t fired up the game machine in months.

    I should probably go outside this AM and do some of the work that will beat me up later in the (heat of the) day.

    Currently 73F with 93%RH.

    N

  3. OFD says:

    Near 70 and isolated t-storms; another nice day tomorrow and then back to the rain again.

    I need to check on all the wind disruption outside and figure out the biggest priorities there; otherwise I gotta be the point man again with the IRS on more threats they certified-mailed us yesterday, and deal with a minor issue with the VA. And I’ve identified a lawyer we should at least talk with on our tax situation. Spent part of yesterday assembling paperwork accordingly.

  4. Dave Hardy says:

    Just for laffs, part of tRump’s morning so far:

    “11:30 AM: Briefing with Secretary of Veterans Affairs David Shulkin”

    An hour later:

    “12:30 PM: President Trump welcomes Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc of Vietnam”

    And the afternoon continues:

    “3:20 PM: President Trump leads a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc of Vietnam”

    I’m sure my boyz and the one grrl will be delighted when I relay this intel to them tomorrow. As I’m sure similar chit was for WWII vets during the 1980s.

  5. CowboySlim says:

    “…otherwise I gotta be the point man again with the IRS on more threats they certified-mailed us yesterday, ….”

    Hmmm……, I must be really important. I’ve never received certified mail from the IRS; however, I have received phone calls from IRS agents in Bangalore.

  6. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    Well, at least Trump announced today that he was pulling the US out of the Paris climate accord, and perhaps the UN treaty that it’s based upon.

  7. Ray Thompson says:

    I have received phone calls from IRS agents in Bangalore

    Pppfffftttt, you ain’t nobody until you get called by Microsoft support because your system is compromised and downloading malicious files.

  8. Dave Hardy says:

    I’m hanging on for the day Microsoft support calls me about something like that so I can laugh like a hyena. The only Windows machine still left here is not connected to the net and won’t be except for very brief periods to connect the iPhones or use TurboTax.

    Sunny here today but still very windy; picked up loose flotsam and jetsam around the yard from yesterday and made a determination as to my next priorities out there.

    Now to man the phone…

  9. RickH says:

    @Dave: about the Mrs Pournelle’s Reading Program …

    The program is finished, and ready for beta testing. But before I can proceed with that, I need to get their signature on the Transfer of IP Property document (sent 3 weeks ago). I need that to transfer the domain to my control, and then set up the LLC that will ‘manage’ the site (and the royalties to Jerry/Roberta). Without that signed document, I have no real control over the program and its sales and use.

    The program is *not* a ‘learn to read’ program, but a ‘learn to read better’ program to improve reading skills. So a ‘student’ should be able to read and follow instructions. It should improve reading skills by at least one grade level. But it will not teach you how to read.

    So, the program is ready for beta testing. But that can’t start until Roberta/Jerry sign the IP document. I included return envelope/postage for the document. Jerry has been laid low by pneumonia, and he doesn’t multitask well lately.

  10. Ray Thompson says:

    I see where NASA is sending a probe to the sun.

    http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/31/us/nasa-sun-mission/index.html

    Why doesn’t NASA just plan the mission to occur at night? Seems that would eliminate the need for a heat shield.

  11. MrAtoz says:

    Why doesn’t NASA just plan the mission to occur at night? Seems that would eliminate the need for a heat shield.

    lol! You should call this into The Don Lemon Show. You know the CNN fukstik who proposed Flight MH370 might have been sucked into a Black Hole. That’s the MSM right there, folks.

  12. lynn says:

    So, how would you like be watching tv when you were 11 years old and see some crazy woman holding what looks like to be your Dad’s head covered in blood ?
    http://www.tmz.com/2017/05/31/barron-trump-thought-donald-beheaded-image-real/

    Referring to:
    http://www.tmz.com/2017/05/31/kathy-griffin-secret-service-investigation-beheading-donald-trump/

    Hat tip to:
    http://drudgereport.com/

    Kathy Griffin is scum. What is wrong with these people ? Do they not have any common decency anymore ?

  13. CowboySlim says:

    “I see where NASA is sending a probe to the sun.”

    Really messing up here. They should wait until EMDrive is ready so it can better cope with sun’s gravitational attraction and really put its solar panels to use.

  14. Dave Hardy says:

    “What is wrong with these people ? Do they not have any common decency anymore ?”

    And Mr. Lynn wins the Rhetorical Question of the Day Contest today. Congrats, Mr. Lynn!

    Just had a string of t-storms pass through here and the innernet went down but not the phones, very strange, all one Comcast bundle, WTF, over?

    But I managed to get squared away with the VA issue; not so lucky with the IRS. They give you a number to call and then waltz you through various vm choices, none of them applicable, and most designed to have you admit that yes, the amount they claim you owe is correct and you wish to make a payment or payment plan. No human bean voice so far.

    So it’s back to the local IRS Tax Advocates Office tomorrow with my issues, and then the lawyer.

    And now the sun is back out with mostly blue skies and a nice breeze. Out to do a bit in the yard.

  15. lynn says:

    So it’s back to the local IRS Tax Advocates Office tomorrow with my issues

    When things get serious, it is best to talk with a human being face to face. You need to get details of what they think that you owe and their proposed payment plan.

  16. Dave Hardy says:

    Exactly, Mr. Lynn. The phones are useless and they don’t do email.

    Basically we need to find out the total amount they claim we owe, go over it with a tax attorney, and set up a consolidated payment plan accordingly. Rinse and repeat with the state tax people. It’s taking many hours out of my life to mess with this stuff and it’s been going on for years now. I just want it organized and under control with no more threats of liens, seizures and jail time.

  17. lynn says:

    “Lewandowski To Republicans: Get On Trump Train or Lose Next Election”
    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2017/05/31/lewandowski_to_republicans_get_on_trump_train_or_lose_next_election.html

    “COREY LEWANDOWSKI, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN MANAGER: President Trump was elected to change the country. And you can get on board that train or you can lose your next election, because – I can promise you this – the Democrats have a different agenda…”

    “It’s my recommendation to those Republicans in Congress to get on board, get the final conclusion done on the repeal and replace of ObamaCare, get the massive tax cut – the largest tax cut in the history of our country – get that done, get the infrastructure done, get the wall built. If you do those things, you will get reelected. If you don’t do those things, it’s because you have failed the American people.”

    Smart man. This country is at war and people have to pick a side. Many of the repuglicans are trying to ride the white stripe in the middle of the road.

    My federal house rep, Pete Olson (R), proudly voted against the house spending bill since he said it was way too liberal for his district.

  18. DadCooks says:

    It is time that a picture of Kathy Griffin being perp walked becomes the Real News of the day.

  19. Nick Flandrey says:

    Back from my recycle run.

    400 pounds steel
    100 pounds mix of Al, motors, transformers, ‘breakage’, brass and copper wire.

    Whew. It is freaking hot.

    Now Kinder grad get together at the park. Better get a shower before heading out.

    n

  20. Dave says:

    @RickH,

    Thanks for the update. My daugher is well on her way to reading, and is at or slightly above her age group. I just wish she was a better reader.

  21. SteveF says:

    Now to man the phone

    Microaggression!

    She said lye was an acid. Okay.

    Uh… it’ll burn you if you get it on your skin and that’s the definition of an acid?

    re the sun-diving mission, rumor has it it’s just an excuse to throw Obama into the sun.

  22. CowboySlim says:

    “She said lye was an acid. Okay.”

    Yes, and H2SO4 is a base and CH4 is inorganic.

  23. lynn says:

    I am beginning to hate the US Mail. They skipped my office yesterday and it looks like they skipped us today.

    Our postmaster is swamped and does not have the time to really care. Our RFD contractor has been sick many times this year and his replacements seem to be total newbies.

  24. Dave Hardy says:

    WRT reading for chillunz; wife’s grandma dumped books on her by the hour when she was a toddler and she could read well at age four. She hasn’t stopped since. I got roughly the same treatment, plus being made to do ten book reports for the local library’s summer reading program at age six. For that I got a “Readers Are Leaders” pin that I managed to hang onto for decades and then lost somehow, somewhere, in the last few years, which still bums me out.

    But we both love reading and do it in preference by far to watching pixels; she goes through several books a week, one at a time, and I run a dozen books all at once and dip into them as the mood strikes, but a dozen are on tap 7×24.

    Anyway, the reading thing comes from the parents, and if the kidz see Mom and Dad and maybe older siblings reading all the time, they may go for it, too. But the other thing is, they have to like it enough to do it on their own with no prompting. My siblings saw me reading all the time, but they also saw me drinking and carousing and skipping skool and raising hell and smoking dope and dropping acid, so they apparently lumped all that in together and they don’t read.

  25. DadCooks says:

    I made a recycle run yesterday with an inoperable microwave. Didn’t expect to get anything and was surprised when I was handed a receipt for 30# “scrap iron”. I took the receipt to the office and collected 60-cents.

    When I left there was a line of people waiting to get their loads unloaded and weighed. Most of them looked like scrapping was a major income producer for them, or maybe it is just the appropriate costume and vehicle, the were probably rich like @nick 😉

    I know many of you don’t care, but I rescued a 5-week old kitten that fell from the bottom of one of the “scrapper’s” trucks. Claimed it wasn’t his and that I was welcome to her. She is a healthy tortoiseshell. BTW tortoiseshell cats are considered good luck. Her name is Rusty.

    Info: http://consciouscat.net/2014/09/30/tortitude-unique-personality-tortoiseshell-cats-fact-fiction/

  26. MrAtoz says:

    Elon Musk says he will leave his position as a White House council if President tRump leaves the Paris Global Ejaculation Accord.

    I don’t care (Hi, Mr. SteveF 🙂 ). Musk probably gets $$$ from the gooberment. Cut him off. Solar ain’t gonna save us.

  27. MrAtoz says:

    Actual Tweet by Sen Diane Frankenstein:

    What will we do when millions of people are displaced by sea level rise, agricultural failures or disease pandemics?

    In ref to Climate Ejaculation Accord withdrawal. Libturdians is dumb, yall. Think of the upside of all the Human Beans not farting out CO2! The planet will be cured!

  28. SteveF says:

    Good on you, DadCooks. I like cats, on the whole better than people, on the whole.

    Musk probably gets $$$ from the gooberment.

    Yah, most of his projects rely on government money one way or another, such as the sweet little subsidy for electric cars, or the eminent domain and government funding which are baked into the hyperloop proposal.

  29. Dave Hardy says:

    Yes, Mr. DadCooks, OFD cares DEEPLY and is a Cat Person. Good on ya, mate!

    “What will we do when millions of people are displaced by sea level rise, agricultural failures or disease pandemics?”

    Diane, they all comin’ round to yo crib, beotch. We gots to take them in, of course. However many tens of millions. Commies like her would then situate them in totally inappropriate small towns in the Midwest or northern New England, of course. She oughta quit worrying about what we’ll do with sea level rise; whoops, there goes the whole fucking Clinton Archipelago, bye-BYE! Including Sodom-on-the-Bay, Diane. Do you and Plastic-Face Pelosi know how to swim?

  30. dkreck says:

    We don’t need no stinkin’ hyperloop. We’re gettin’ HSR.

  31. CowboySlim says:

    “Actual Tweet by Sen Diane Frankenstein:

    What will we do when millions of people are displaced by sea level rise, agricultural failures or disease pandemics?”

    10-4, Diane. I’m 1 1/2 miles from the Pacific Ocean and my house is at 2ft AMSL. I have it in BOLD face on my calendar to worry about in on June 1, 2099.

  32. Greg Norton says:

    Well, at least Trump announced today that he was pulling the US out of the Paris climate accord, and perhaps the UN treaty that it’s based upon.

    He needs to pull the 54 MPG CAFE mandate for 2025 before it is too late. New cars are seriously screwed up just trying to meet the current standards.

    Electric push button emergency brakes?!?

  33. SteveF says:

    Check your data and math, CowboySlim. Isn’t the revised sea level rise about 0.4mm/year? At that torrential rate, the sea will have come up more than an inch by 2099. You’d better start panicking no later than next year, so you can beat the rush.

  34. lynn says:

    Solar ain’t gonna save us.

    Solar is just a part of our energy solution. When I worked at TXU back in the 1980s, we started 2 to 10 natural gas power plants late each morning in the cooling season to run people’s air conditioners in the afternoon. We would usually have them offline by 8 or 9 pm and do all over again the next day. Solar is displacing those peaking power plants which were not very efficient (24% at best operating point) (think of extreme hot rods) and very maintenance intensive due to many heating and cooling cycles.

    In the heating season we would start bring on those peakers at 4 am in the morning. And then we would reduce power on all of our 125 power plants that we were running because when people got up at 6 am, they would walk over to the thermostat and give it a spin up. We would roll off by 10 am and at 4 pm do it all over again. About half of the home heating in Texas uses electric strip heat.

    The USA is built on cheap energy. Any energy source that is cheap will be successful in the marketplace as it should be. However, government subsidies will distort that marketplace and should not be used except in extreme circumstances.

  35. Greg Norton says:

    I’m discovering that the current crop of youtube creators are doing a very good job indeed. They are best when focused pretty narrowly, and passionate about that focus.

    I’ve been watching Adam the Woo since our sentence -er- time in Vantucky. His videos helped me cope with homesickness for FL and The South in general.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W_RF5jqUw8o

  36. lynn says:

    Electric push button emergency brakes?!?

    No freaking way. The emergency brakes are cable operated to be your last way to brake if your master cylinder fails. I even think that the emergency brake should be a handle in the middle of the front seat(s) so it is easier to manipulate.

  37. Greg Norton says:

    However, government subsidies will distort that marketplace and should not be used except in extreme circumstances.

    Speaking of Oregon’s Solyndra … they just went Tango Uniform.

    http://www.bizjournals.com/portland/news/2017/05/25/solarworld-at-least-500-layoffs-coming-at.html

  38. Greg Norton says:

    No freaking way.

    New Mazda3s, but many small cars now have the “feature”.

    My 2001 Solara has a big ol’ lever in the center. As long as it keeps passing TX inspections, I’m not in a big hurry to trade the vehicle.

    Dunno about Subarus in general, but the one the kid is driving in the movie has the lever.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S9XXuOsB3xo

  39. CowboySlim says:

    “Check your data and math, CowboySlim. ”

    Thanks for the warning. I have a Coleman air mattress that I use in my tent when camping up in the High Sierras. I have D cells for its pump and I am ready to float. Or maybe go back to where we camp at 6,100 ft AMSL.
    https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/inyo/recarea/?recid=81828
    I’ll be up here Fri & Sat, Aug 11 & 12.
    Cowboy night with BBQ dinner and live music, Aug 12,
    https://www.facebook.com/Kennedy-Meadows-General-Store-203499716374227/

  40. MrAtoz says:

    Libturdians like Michael “Piece of Shit” Moore blame President tRump for inspiring the killer Bernie/Stein supporter in Oregon.

    Meanwhile, 50 shootings in Chicongo over the long weekend is blamed on zzz zzz zzz.

  41. Ed says:

    California solar is interesting.

    About two weeks ago, on a Friday, a pickup truck pulled up in front of the neighbors house with 4 guys in it. Solar installers. By 6pm they had the system installed on a second story tile (concrete really) roof, 15 panels (~3KW), and conduit down to the meter. Impressive. (I assume a licensed electrician came later and did the hookup and permit sign off.)

    West facing, not south – afternoon peaking in summer is what the SoCal grid needs and I think they boost the rate if you point appropriately now.

    I’ve thought about it, the subsidies are huge, but my bill is small and having people walking about on a 30yo roof is asking for trouble. The tiles proper should last forever but the underlying felt and what not concerns me.

    P.s. Rescue cat is coming along. Hobbling about, abscesses almost healed. He actually stretched like a cat, on his feet, the other day.

  42. Greg Norton says:
  43. Dave Hardy says:

    Good on ya, Mr. Ed; another cat person!

    tRump will also be responsible for any bad chit that happens, of course, like, say, an economic crash, a new war, the Grid going down, and various mad-dog shooters around the country, so long as they’re WHITEYs. The mayhem in Chicongo and Detroit and South Central just goes on and on and that’s WHITEY’s fault, too.

  44. Dave Hardy says:

    Hey, remember that dude giving young Benjamin advice by the pool…”Plastics.”

    Now it’s gonna be: “Cryptocurrencies.”

    Got yer Bitcoin on? Ethereum?

  45. Dave Hardy says:

    “Things could get interesting in Portland this weekend.”

    Maybe BasedStickMan will show up.

    Or some AN guys and Hells Angels.

    And recently discharged Marines and Army Rangers…

  46. Miles_Teg says:

    OFD wrote:

    “Good on ya, Mr. Ed; another cat person!”

    So is my elder nephew… 🙁

    I think they should be shot on sight.

  47. Greg Norton says:

    And recently discharged Marines and Army Rangers…

    The OR Governor, Kate Brown, is an old school dyke, a bait-n-switch trick perpetrated on the voters by the former Governor and the Democratic Party shortly before we left town in 2014.

    Brown will bring in the National Guard if the Twitter rhetoric gets heated headed into the weekend. Portland had several days of riots after the election in November.

  48. SteveF says:

    Ed and your nephew should be shot on sight? Sheesh.

  49. lynn says:

    My 2001 Solara has a big ol’ lever in the center. As long as it keeps passing TX inspections, I’m not in a big hurry to trade the vehicle.

    I’m keeping my 2005 Expedition with 181K miles for another two or three years unless something really bad happens. Maintenance is way cheaper than new car payments.

    “Senate passes bill to eliminate most vehicle safety inspections”
    https://www.texastribune.org/2017/05/04/senate-passes-bill-would-eliminate-vehicle-inspection-requirement/

    “The Texas Senate on Thursday gave its blessing to a bill that would eliminate the state’s vehicle safety inspection requirement for most vehicles. It would still apply for commercial vehicles.”

    I’m not sure if this headed to the governor or not.

  50. Dave Hardy says:

    Well, OFD is sure glad neither he nor wifey will be anywhere near Portland, OR this weekend.

    However, if MrAtoz is available, I wouldn’t mind watching the show from a Blackhawk or Apache or whatever he’s qualified on currently…just sayin…

    If not, it’ll have to be the innernet again…

    Speaking of governors, our gov here vetoed the pot legalization bill that got put up, but he’d go for it if they made some changes. IDGAF and don’t have a dawg in that particular fight. Just leave 2A alone and we’ll get along fine. Incidentally, that is the precursor to all the other rights, and without it, they’re nothing.

    Latest firearm changes for the military are, of course, the Sig P320, and they’re looking at .308-level stuff to replace the M4 now. As citizens we should also have the same or better, in selective-fire, of course.

  51. MrAtoz says:

    I watched Tucker Carlson’s analysis of Cankles being interviewed at CodeCon. He couldn’t stop laughing at all the conspiracy theories she threw out, except she claimed them as fact. The Great Right Wing/Russian hacker conspiracy. The great “political interviewer” Walt Mossberg just sat there agreeing, nodding his head, letting her say whatever unchallenged. I didn’t know he was a Libturdian hack. The email server didn’t matter, the Russians apparently planted fake news in WI et al and the deplorables fell for it. She didn’t lose, she won, she was robbed #RESIST

    Lol!!!!!!!

  52. pcb_duffer says:

    [snip] Many of the repuglicans are trying to ride the white stripe in the middle of the road. [snip]
    I’m not a fan of Jim Hightower, in any way, shape, or form. But his book title “There’s Nothing in the Middle of the Road but Yellow Stripes and Dead Armadillos” expresses that sentiment very well.

    [snip] I am beginning to hate the US Mail. They skipped my office yesterday and it looks like they skipped us today. [snip]
    When I was in business, the USPS carrier skipped us at least one day out of five. My complaints fell on deaf ears. I didn’t dare put anything critical at the street. Thankfully the nearest post office was < 2 miles.

    [snip] I’m 1 1/2 miles from the Pacific Ocean and my house is at 2ft AMSL. [snip]
    I'm closer than that to the Gulf of Mexico, and more or less the same altitude. Hurricanes are a more important threat to me than changes in long term baseline climate.

    [snip] I even think that the emergency brake should be a handle in the middle of the front seat(s) so it is easier to manipulate. [snip]
    Not very practical for my 2002 Grand Caravan. The emergency brake is close to the dash, where a quick stab with my left leg could engage it. The fact that my left leg doesn't work entirely correctly is another matter …

    [snip] President Trump leads a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc of Vietnam” [snip]
    What's wrong with old enemies becoming allies? Even the French & English made peace. Hell, there might even be Europeans who don't go to bed at night worried that the Germans are coming back.

    [snip] The OR Governor, Kate Brown, is an old school dyke, [snip]
    Sorry, I'm a Libertarian. Her sex life doesn't involve me, and (presumably) only involves consenting adults, so it's none of my dammed business. And it's not the government's business, either.

    [snip] The Texas Senate on Thursday gave its blessing to a bill that would eliminate the state’s vehicle safety inspection requirement for most vehicles. It would still apply for commercial vehicles. [snip]
    A long time ago, Florida has inspections for personal vehicles. They got rid of it because the system was a giant pit of abuse & corruption. If your vehicle was actually unsafe, it would still pass for an extra $20 – $50. If you knew nothing about cars, your frobnosticator was always misaligned; but it was a quick fix and only cost $20. I don't have any idea re: commercial vehicles here.

    Finally, re: reading and learning to read. Neither of my parents were educated. Dad eked out of high school, mom not even that. But they both loved to read, passed that down to me, and even before elementary school taught me to read. There's a PhD thesis out there for anyone willing to study poor people who read to their kids vs. those who plop them in front of the tube, but I fear the conclusions wouldn't be tolerable to many of the entrenched interests. Machiavelli mentioned something about that, a long time ago. But he was a Dago, so who knows.

  53. lynn says:

    The mailman showed up at the office at 8 pm. I’ve got a feeling that his fillin yesterday did not deliver or take any mail …

  54. lynn says:

    I think the usa military is looking at the 7.62×51, not the ak47 7.62×39. The quote I saw mentioned the prevalence of body armor on the battlefield now.

    My dad’s BAR is a 7.62×51. I would never ever ever ever want to shoot that on auto (if it had that mode, his is just semi). Just shooting a five round mag on semi made me want to throw it in the neatest creek. And that was back when I could bench press 330 lbs. Today, no freaking way.

  55. SteveF says:

    Sorry, I’m a Libertarian. Her sex life doesn’t involve me, and (presumably) only involves consenting adults, so it’s none of my dammed business. And it’s not the government’s business, either.

    +1

    That said, I’ll use any means, fair, foul, true, false, or just plain disgusting, to attack people who disgust me. eg, the rumor that Barrack Obama likes pretty young Indonesian boys. I don’t care if they’re above the age of consent. It sounds sketchy, so I’ll pass it along.

    I would never ever ever ever want to shoot that on auto

    A number of weapons aren’t so bad on auto. A single shot gives you a good kick but on auto the forward and back motions mostly cancel each other out. I’ve never fired a BAR on auto but I’d guess that would be one of them; it wouldn’t get much use if the gunner had to deal with 30-06 recoil times 10.

  56. CowboySlim says:

    “California solar is interesting.”

    Roger that! Two companies refused my offer to install with a guarantee of 20% savings over CH4 generated electricity.

  57. Dave Hardy says:

    There is rarely ever any good reason to be firing a semi-auto rifle on full-auto anyway.

  58. lynn says:

    There is rarely ever any good reason to be firing a semi-auto rifle on full-auto anyway.

    Yup, when that vehicle loaded with explosives is heading your way, just fire one shot at a time.
    http://www.businessinsider.com/john-kellys-speech-about-marines-in-ramadi-2013-6

  59. lynn says:

    I would never ever ever ever want to shoot that on auto

    A number of weapons aren’t so bad on auto. A single shot gives you a good kick but on auto the forward and back motions mostly cancel each other out. I’ve never fired a BAR on auto but I’d guess that would be one of them; it wouldn’t get much use if the gunner had to deal with 30-06 recoil times 10.

    Dad’s BAR has a wooden stock. No butt cushion. Feels like Mike Tyson missing your face and hitting your shoulder instead.

  60. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    I never had any problem firing my HK-41 (G3) on full auto. As SteveF commented, it was actually worse firing semi-auto, where each round caused sharp recoil. On full auto at 10 rounds per second, the recoil becomes more like a steady strong shove against your shoulder. And, since the G3 has an inline stock, the recoil is pretty much straight back, so the muzzle doesn’t tend to climb if you keep it to short (3- to 4-round) bursts.

    I wish I’d never lost that G3 in the lake. (Actually, I didn’t. I sold it to some guy at a gun show 40 years ago because I needed the cash more at the time than I needed the gun.)

  61. Nick Flandrey says:

    My buddy says firing his Barrett is like getting kicked in the face, and has caused him nosebleeds. He’s a little guy, the Barrett is taller than him, but he’s plenty stocky.

    n

  62. lynn says:

    My buddy says firing his Barrett is like getting kicked in the face, and has caused him nosebleeds. He’s a little guy, the Barrett is taller than him, but he’s plenty stocky.

    On the FTWD (“Fear The Walking Dead”) tv show, one of the army platoons had a Barrett. They explained that in order to fire the weapon, you had to breathe out first since it would compress the air around the rifle and you did not want your lungs full of air. I have no idea if this was true or not but it sounds cool.

  63. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    Well, hell. The .50BMG was never intended to be fired from the shoulder. I’ve fired elephant guns up to and including the .600 Nitro Express, and they pale compared to the .50 BMG. The .600NE pushes a 900-grain bullet at 2,050 ft/s for 8,221 ft·lbf . The .50BMG pushes an 800-grain bullet at 2,895 ft/s for 14,895 ft·lbf.

    That means in rifles of the same weight, the .50 BMG has much more recoil. I fired the .600 NE in a very heavy rifle back when I was in my 20’s and weighed 240 pounds, and I wasn’t man enough to handle it then. It made the recoil of a heavy 12-gauge magnum slug load look reasonable, even though the shotgun was a fraction the weight of the elephant gun.

  64. paul says:

    “Senate passes bill to eliminate most vehicle safety inspections”
    Works for me. It’s not like they really do much of an inspection now.
    Once upon a time EVERY TIME I went for inspection they effed-up my headlights. It didn’t matter where I went. Some times so low they were useless, other times so high folks are flashing you in town. Some times, well, you get the drift. This was with a ’75 Cordoba, an ’85 Cavalier, and a ’78 Volare wagon. The Chevy had the little square quads. The Cordoba and the wagon had 7″(?) rounds. It got really old having to re-aim the head lights once a year. On the plus side, I can aim headlights.

  65. Dave Hardy says:

    “Yup, when that vehicle loaded with explosives is heading your way, just fire one shot at a time.”

    I said “rarely.” It will likely continue to be a rare event here in the village, one hopes. And anyway, one head shot for the driver is better than spraying the landscape and hitting everything but the vehicle.

  66. nick flandrey says:

    Isn’t it one 50 BMG to the engine to stop vehicle borne IEDs?

    n

    The driver is a bonus.

    n

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