Monday, 14 September 2015

08:05 – We’re having definite signs of the approaching autumn. It was 50F (10C) when Colin and I went out the first time this morning.

Barbara made a Krusteaz cinnamon swirl crumb cake yesterday. We both liked it better than the pastries she gets at the supermarket, so I stuck a few boxes of it in my Walmart cart for the next time I place an order with them.

August turned out to be slower than expected for science kit sales. Our August revenue was only about 75% of the August 2014 revenue. This month, on the other hand, although we’re less than halfway through the month we’re already at 100% of September 2014 revenue. Things go up and down.

Another cop shot to death by a young black man, this one yesterday in Kentucky. Now is not a good time to be a cop. Their rules of engagement really suck. If they shoot a millisecond too soon, they’re liable to be in a world of hurt; if they shoot a millisecond too late, they end up on a slab in the morgue. This will not end well.

43 thoughts on “Monday, 14 September 2015”

  1. Is it possible that the late Labor Day had some effect on your sales in August vs. September? Since lots of kids don’t start school until after Labor Day, some parents could have put off their purchases until after September 1.

  2. It’s possible, but I no longer worry about the ups and downs. The only thing that really counts is the total revenue at the end of the year.

  3. “Their rules of engagement really suck.”

    They have no one to thank for this but themselves, largely, and earlier court decisions that came about because of their earlier misbehavior. And it’s the training nowadays that really sucks.

    Finally, their default setting seems to be lethal force now; if they’re expected to go from zero to ninety in any encounter with us Mundanes, no, it is not likely to end well. In my day we had intermediary gradations of force to use, including simple physical control of a subject, through nightstick, The Claw, the PR-24 baton, tear gas and Mace. Of course there were occasions when we had no choice but to immediately draw our service revolvers, which we could only fire if our life or someone else’s was in immediate danger. And the old “fleeing felons” clause.

    Nowadays they’re likely to tase somebody repeatedly until the person is writhing on the ground and catatonic, or they just empty their semi-autos and reload the mags and empty them again, all over the landscape.

    Then there’s the no-knock SWAT raids and extensive, arbitrary and often mistaken overuse of them. And the instant media and internet stories, often with vid footage, of white cops shooting harmless black “children.”

    It’s setting up as a cops versus citizen cultural phenomenon and it’s the cops who put it in motion.

  4. All of those points are valid, but what really matters is the result. Ordinary people cannot count on the police to control the depredations of underclass scum. I’m not talking about protecting individuals. The old saying that when seconds count the cops are only minutes away is even more appropriate nowadays than it ever has been. I’m talking about the cops protecting groups and areas by drawing lines and letting the UnScum know in no uncertain terms that misbehavior in decent neighborhoods will not be tolerated.

  5. That currently seems a bit optimistic. I suspect their interests lie mainly in their own safety and the brass in C.Y.A.

    We’re on our own.

  6. Yes, that’s what I mean. The cops are no longer even attempting to protect decent neighborhoods.

  7. Police deaths are to be vastly overblown – I assume the media is deliberately publicizing every single death.

    This is a perfectly fine time to be a cop. Consider these figures on police deaths: 2013 was the smallest number of fatalities in decades, and 2014 was nearly as low, and 2015 is shaping up to also be only slightly higher. Compensate for today’s much larger population, and the numbers are even lower.

    Police deaths run around 0.01%, which is about the same as the construction industry. It’s a lot safer to be a cop than a farmer, or a taxi driver, or a garbage collector.

  8. Those are on-duty police deaths rather than police who have been murdered, right?

  9. I am beginning to suspect that current training is causing some of the shooting incidents.

    I’ll reserve final judgement until I’ve had a chance to go thru the ‘shoot/no shoot’ simulator, but based on trends in civilian training and targets, I’d say the current system is training people to shoot if the target has ANYTHING in their hands.

    What I mean is that they no longer use targets of thugs holding a pistol, they use “no shoot” targets with open hands. So anything other than open hands, fingers spread, is a valid target during training. The training no longer discriminates between lethal and non-lethal objects.

    Like I said, in a week or 2 I will get to do the same simulator our local cops use, and I’ll have more observations then.

    “The cops are no longer even attempting to protect decent neighborhoods.”

    -one of the advantages of Texas is the ability to hire constables to patrol your neighborhood. MOST HOAs will do so and advertise it as a bonus. (Constables are sworn peace officers, with exactly the same powers as your typical cops.)

    Our HOA has full time coverage of 2 officers who patrol JUST our neighborhood (unless a high priority call takes them away.) I see them on my street several times a day. We have the feeling that they work for US, mainly because they do. Our HOA is 1200 homes, and there is a fair amount of ground to cover. Any delays are due to the dispatch and routing, more than distance or lack of manpower.

    All that said, the conflict is coming. Indeed, it’s already here.


  10. @brad

    I looked at the statistical breakdown of how they died. Apparently 33 were shot in 2013 and 48 were shot in 2014. While 48 is the third lowest number of police officers shot in the last 10 years, I have to wonder about how many shootings are while on a call vs. while not on a call. If police officers are more likely to be shot while not on a call, that is a serious problem.

    I think police officers are prepared to deal with threats while they are on a call. How do you deal with an increased threat when you are not on a call? I can see an officer being even more vigilant while on a call. If you can never relax while in uniform or with your car, that is another matter.

  11. Why would anyone ever want a gun at an amusement park?

    Imagine your kids are on the ride, you can’t just walk away. Imagine the fair operators DON’T get there (guys in blue and black shirts, also red and black shirts) before the pipes start swinging.


    note that the lady in the white shirt with writing on the sleeves (fair personnel?) makes the tactical mistake of opening the bike rack, and providing (inadvertent) leadership for the crowd to get inside the bike rack.

    nb- bike rack is an industry term for that kind of crowd barrier. It locks together in a way that isn’t immediately obvious how to unlock it.

  12. I wonder about 2015, and also what the trend line looks like. I’m guessing that it’s sharply up.

  13. I’m pretty sure those are total deaths. But does it matter whether you get shot, or run over, or die by falling down the stairs? Dead is dead. Overall, policing is not an especially dangerous profession.

    Of course, there are better and worse postings. I imagine no one wants to be a white police officer in a black ghetto just now.

    Even if the police are really in more danger, then they may just have brought it on themselves. Unnecessary force, asset forfeiture, SWAT teams for minor drug offenses – it goes on and on. No surprise that the police are regarded as the enemy.

  14. Yeah, it matters a lot. A cop who dies in a car accident or a fall didn’t die because someone murdered him.

    I’m not saying the police are blameless, not even close. However, I think it’s important to differentiate between the street cops on one hand and the police brass, bureaucrats, and politicians on the other. The latter group is ultimately responsible for many/most of the problems.

  15. ” However, I think it’s important to differentiate between the street cops on one hand and the police brass, bureaucrats, and politicians on the other. The latter group is ultimately responsible for many/most of the problems.”


    There it is.

    Those fuckers are also usually responsible for 90% of the stress that the average street cop deals with day in and day out and night after night. I speak from personal experience on that score.

    As for dangerous calls, the worst used to be the domestics; I dunno about nowadays, though; you can get nailed pumping gas, pulling into your driveway, or just standing around at a football game.

    “If you can never relax while in uniform or with your car, that is another matter.”

    I could back in the day for various short periods of time, to the point I could doze off in the cruiser if it was backed up against a parking garage wall, for example, and any noise at all in there echoes loud enough to wake me up, or any wild-ass call on the radio. Can’t think of anyplace nowadays I’d do that. You gotta be in minimal Condition Yellow at all times, even at home, and more likely Orange, depending on your posting and area.

  16. Don’t most Mormons keep one family year of food in the house? We used to have a Mormon friend, I saw her peanut butter stash once and commented on it. The wife told me later that her friend also ha da bedroom upstairs converted to a pantry with several thousand cans of food in it.

  17. No. Only something under 10% of Mormon families keep a year’s worth of food.

  18. We had a Mormon space surveillance console operator down the hall from us in the security police barracks at a NORAD radar site in Kalifornia (they got quartered with us ’cause they were top-shelf, top-secret AF drones who got massive re-up bonuses.) Anyway, he had cases of canned goods plus flour, honey, salt and powdered eggs stashed under his bunk and in his closet. I doubt it was a year’s supply, though.

    We in the SP’s had our run of the chow hall, though, at every base I was at, esp. overnight shifts; cooks were SP augmentees, and got called out for alerts with us and in hostile fire zones, for attacks, too. We took good care of them out there and gave them easy posts and made sure they were OK. Medics, ditto. They fixed our pee tests for us.

  19. Indeed. Plus, September 28…or was it the 23rd, I forget…couple weeks anyway…

    Seriously, gun up and prep anyway. And your life and the lives of your loved ones and neighbors does in fact depend on it.

    Say, for more boffo laffs, and thanks for yours, Mr. nick, we have this gem:

    Click on that box and scroll down to find YOUR state; we gon hab an office in Colchester, VT, just 25 miles south down the road here. Y’all in NC and TX gon hab lots more, do sharia much?

  20. Awful lot of catholic and other christian charities involved in this non-sense. You’d think the Church would remember. But I guess when you spend all your time in seminary learning about the living christ, and the social justice warrior agenda, you don’t have much time for history, let alone that non-pc muslim conquest part of church history. Too bad about Constantinople, and Assyria, and the rest.


  21. “…when you spend all your time in seminary learning about the living christ, and the social justice warrior agenda, you don’t have much time for history…”

    That is correct. Not to mention homosexual groups and activities over the years, involvement with radical fembat causes, “liberation theology,” guitar masses, and the Jesus-is-our-friend spirit with zero mention of His “hard sayings,” or the Four Last Things whatsoever. Facing unpleasant facts is…well…unpleasant. And so all the bad and negative stuff never comes up. Just like the police departments in my day:

    “So, kid, you just get out of the Academy?”


    “Well forget all that shit you learned back at the Academy.”

    “So kid, you just outta seminary?”

    Except no one tells ’em to forget that shit. And we get Father Lively and Father Bozo in the parishes, with comedy routines, instead of serious homilies, (not to mention crappy music) or some born-again do-gooder saintly type, who thinks it would be a great idea to shelter a couple of families of hadjis in the parish center, or, even better, one family of Bosnian Serb muslims next to a family of Croatian Catholics with ties to Romanian fascist organizations.

    And the sad thing is that the history you refer to is readily available in many Church-related publications and in countless books put out by Catholic publishing companies over the decades.

  22. Mr OFD: I have suspicions about that site you referenced.

    First, they are serving up almost-scareware (perhaps malware-precursors) with a popup that tells you your Windows drivers need updating. Bad ju-ju, that, IMHO.

    Second, I am suspect of their ‘document’. It certainly does not look official.

    But the first issue (the pop-ups for IMHO malware) made me run away from that site.


  23. @Mr. Rick H: I didn’t have any popups but I’m using FF w/NoScripts and AdBlockPlus. They may have copied the original document but those addresses, fax numbers and office names are accurate; just checked a few of them and they’re straight up, including the one office here in Vermont. A sibling reports that most of the offices listed for MA are in cities that already have experienced “difficulties” with various immigrant groups, especially hadjis. So the government’s solution, like much else, is to have more of it; let’s bring in a few hundred-thousand more.

    Cui bono?

  24. I didn’t see any popups or scareware either. FF with Adblock Plus, as far as I can remember, no additional tweaks.

    The Catholic Charities on Louisiana St address was correct. Whether they are in line for jihadis, who knows.

    Just try seeing where all the centeral american and south american border crossers ended up. All over the flippin place.

    I was running web your way, but it wasn’t consistently removing and blocking stuff. Particularly with UKDailyMail. I was blocking all the entertainment stuff and anything with Kard-ass-ian in it. Sometimes it worked, sometimes not. The premis was good…


  25. On a separate note,

    I finished the “Wartime Farm” series- and learned a lot. Once again, poor people at war end up eating grass. This time it was the germans, and they had a recipe that used grass, silage (fermented weeds and grass) and wood shavings, to make erzatz bread.

    Just finished the “Victorian Farm” series- learned lots from it too. In particular, the difficulty of raising animals, and how one bad season can wipe out a farmer.

    Just started the “Edwardian Farm” series.

    I like the presenters, and they’ve got a nice mix of the nitty gritty, with some fluff to keep the punters interested. You won’t see anyone squeeze a sheep’s teat to see if wax comes out as a pregnancy test on Discovery Channel. And you won’t see them smack it between their fingertips to check it’s consistency and stickiness….

    Oh, and the take away is that if it all collapses, farming is HARD and will be almost impossible at that level of tech, as the machines and knowledge are almost all gone.

    I recommend watching if you have time. They are available on youtube.


  26. Here’s one for your consideration. I’ve long believed that the public school system as it exists today is effectively a prison, and is mostly about preparing inmates for prison, in the same way it used to prepare workers to enter the factory.

    “Public School Students Are The New Inmates In The American Police State”

    The article has a bunch of truths mixed in with some ‘cart before the horse’ thinking. The organization that wrote it is at first glance a weird mix of lefty speak and conservative religious belief. Very strange. The use of the phrase “gun violence” and the lack of mention of blacks and gangs would normally make the whole thing suspect, but from my own experiences, there is truth there.

    Worth a read thru if only to spur your own thinking and ‘yeah but’ …


  27. farming is HARD and will be almost impossible at that level of tech

    Indeed it is. On the farm I was raised we had some ancient farm equipment that was left by prior owners. We never used it and never got around to carting it off. One particular item I thought I would try was an old horse drawn plow. No moving parts so jammed bearings and missing parts and such would not be an issue.

    I sharpened the plow blade and polished the surface to a mirror finish. I hooked it to a tractor and tried to plow a furrow in one of our fields. We had partially plowed this field with the tractor mounted plow. I just wanted to do one furrow. Had my brother operate the tractor. In this scenario I was not also having to control a couple horses or mules so it should have been easier than the old days.

    Bzzzzttttt, wrong. It was extremely hard to plow, it was difficult to plow a consistent furrow. In fact it was for the most part a complete failure. I suppose there is a trick to plowing with a manual plow and with learning it would have worked. Controlling that thing was extremely difficult even at the slowest speed of the tractor (darn slow). I cannot imagine controlling a horse team, walking speed, trying to plow and do it for hours on end for several days. I was wasted to submission after one 200 yard furrow.

  28. +1

    I had a similar experience 40 years ago on a friend’s small holding, standing on the plate behind the plow as he towed it at about 1 MPH. I gave up after the first furrow.

  29. What lesson is there in this?

    Nice summary and map.

    Flipping the lesson on it’s head– the lesson is ………. if you think you will be leaving eventually, LEAVE NOW. The early “refugees” are much better off than the later. If you must leave your situation, ACT. Set some triggers and go.

    We’ve talked about this before in the context of evacuation or bugging out. I don’t think we’ve looked at it from the “economic migrant” perspective. They are people who decided that they must leave their home, and head for somewhere else. How much better for them if they were carrying gold? How much better if they had plans for a safe haven? If they had a plan for where to go?

    Look at failing economies like California. Industry decimated by regulation. Population shifting. Drought destroying agriculture. Now, fires sweeping across wide areas, displacing individual families and whole communities.

    When is it time to leave? Where will you go? Will you wait until the fence starts going up? Will you wait until the current residents run out of patience and money? Or will you go NOW.

    What will we do in Texas? If we wanted to be Cali, we already would be. Are we ready for the influx of 100,000 ‘economic migrants’ leaving California for a better life here? Some people I’ve talked to think SEVERAL hundred thousand a year will come here. And this doesn’t consider the influx from south of the border. What will the local economy look like when Mr Whitey from the imperial valley is competing for simple labor jobs with Senor Brown from guatamala?

    Will we see large modern ‘Hoovervilles’?

    How many will be serious criminals?

    “I’m 58 years old and I just got done doing 23 years in prison,” New says. “Right now, I’m just kind of stuck.

    Hard times coming.


  30. I still expect a slow slide into dystopia, but I’ve been wrong before.

    I had a conversation with Barbara the other night. I told her I want to pick up a couple of Ruger AR-556 tactical rifles and various accessories this weekend. She has nothing against having the rifles, and would probably like having her own M4gery, but as she pointed out, we’re trying to keep money in our bank account so that we can pay cash for a home plus moving expenses. I told her that I really, really hoped that we’d never need those rifles, but if we did we’d REALLY need them, if only for their ability to lay down sustained fire.

  31. And they are cheap and plentiful at the moment.

    when you need them, they might not be.


  32. “It was extremely hard to plow, it was difficult to plow a consistent furrow. In fact it was for the most part a complete failure.”

    And chances are, they would have had to clear that land first, of trees (and then remove the stumps) and rocks, esp. here in Nova Anglia. With manual hand tools. Now picture the Jamestown and Plymouth settlers doing that in the face of potentially or actually hostile natives in late fall or winter. While also facing disease and starvation.

    “… but if we did we’d REALLY need them, if only for their ability to lay down sustained fire.”

    Yes. I’m about to “pull the trigger” on similar purchases very soon now. While also developing the means to craft my own. Don’t forget the ammo, the cleaning kits, repair tools, etc. Slings and backup iron sights.

  33. I plan to get six spare OEM Magpul magazines and a sling for each. I’m currently looking into sights, probably red-dot, but I figure the OEM sights will do for now. I am light on ammo, both practice and serious. I figure I’ll order another case or three down the line. These’ll be the first AR-pattern rifles I’ve owned since the 70’s, so I want to play with them a bit before I mod them at all.

    I seriously debated 7.62 versus 5.56, but the cost, recoil, etc. of 7.62 tilted me toward 5.56. I do have a .308/7.62 bolt action rifle and a couple hundred rounds of blue-tip API’s just in case, and the bolt does fine with them, or did back in the 70’s.

    Any recommendations on cleaning kits, tools, slings, sights, etc.? I’m so much an oldie with ARs that I’m now a newbie again. And people say that one can’t revirginate someone…

  34. Learning manual skills is tough. I’ve learn a pile of stuff, fixing up the building we are in, but there are some where I am just in awe. I’ll give an example in a moment.

    Learning isn’t linear. When you’re starting out, you are mostly a failure, or produce barely respectable results. After a while, you reach some basic competence level, but are still slow. If you had to make a living, you’d be hungry a lot. When you reach expert status (which I haven’t, anywhere), you’re not just better, you are incomparably more productive as well. This yields an almost exponential effect.

    Now for the example: This house has a fair amount of plaster work, done with genuine plaster. In an attempt to be true to the style, I did one wall of one room that I renovated. Here’s the thing: real plaster hardens in 10 minutes. So you mix up a batch, and you have 10 minutes to get it on the wall. While doing so, you also want to achieve a consistent texture, or pattern, or whatever appearance you are going for. Needless to say, I never made it through even a small batch before it hardened on me.

    But it’s worse than that. Hardened plaster acts as a catalyst on wet plaster, causing it to harden immediately. So after your 10 minutes, you have to completely clean your tools so there’s not a trace of plaster left. If it has hardened, as it always did on me, this takes a lot of time and scraping – easily 10 minutes or more – before you can try again. If you skimp on the cleaning, you have an even bigger, hardened mess to clean. I later saw some experts at work: They could apply (large) batches well within the 10-minute window, leaving enough time to clean their tools before the plaster set, taking no time at all, before continuing with the next batch.

    I expect it’s the same with the plowing: To get better, you need to plow a lot. But plowing is so damned hard when you’re learning that you cannot plow a lot. By the time you are finally good, and able to plow for hours on end, you don’t need the practice. Getting there from here? Not easy.

  35. “Any recommendations on cleaning kits, tools, slings, sights, etc.? ”

    I like these guys for their slings and belts, and also the instructional videos, books, and advice from their founder/president, retired Army special forces Sergeant Major Kyle Lamb:

    I’ve found cleaning kits to be pretty generic, but the most reliable seem to come from Brownell’s and Midway, some specifically for the AR platforms. They also carry AR-specific tool and armorer kits.


    A nice tool to carry with you when you’re toting the AR’s: MULTI-TASKER – AR-15/M16 MULTITASKER SERIES 3 MULTITOOL

    I don’t do any extensive tacticool commando mods to AR’s; I’m working my way through the Marine Corps manual of arms for the rifle and doing that old disassembly/reassembly caper again and eventually trying it blindfolded. I also leave the supplied iron sights on them, add a good sling, and load up half a dozen Magpul mags. That’s it. Later I’ll think harder again about optics and a light, but right now I’m not inclined to go that way. Most of any CQB stuff is gonna be within a hundred yards, but it’s worth remembering that Marine riflemen who get good with them can hit man-size targets out to 500 yards. With iron sights. That is my objective.

    There are maybe half a dozen good and reputable training schools for rifle stuff out there but I haven’t had the scratch to drive or fly to any of them; my most likely bet is Mas Ayood’s classes over in the great Granite State next door to us. And Project Appleseed when it comes to Leyden, MA in November.

    My last extensive go-round with AR’s was the old-style rifles over 40 years ago, so I also count myself a noob.

  36. All the web gunnies I read like the boresnake for cleaning, well, bores. Holographic sights too.

    I haven’t shot my rifle in a while, and used patches last time, but I did pick up boresnakes in every caliber I might need.

    Guess I better put a few rounds downrange sometime soon.


    Gahhh, been fighting with a print driver on winXP for hours. Was working fine, something changed, and suddenly bizarre behaviour. Re-initiallized the printer, tried every setting I could find, reinstalled the driver,rebooted, tried known good files, all with no luck. Finally noticed that spooling was turned on, and so was ‘print the spool first’. Unchecked both of those, and suddenly printing again (or actually cutting as this printer is really a vinyl cutter for making signs and stickers.) No indication of when or why this got changed, or even if it was the root cause, but I’m cutting again, and don’t want to spend another minute on it.

    BTW, old expensive, and working hardware like this is a perfect reason NOT to force OS upgrades.

  37. “…but I did pick up boresnakes in every caliber I might need.”

    Ditto, plus the bore sight gizmos for all those calibers.

    “…old expensive, and working hardware like this is a perfect reason NOT to force OS upgrades.”

    Often too true. XP and even Windows NT are still in a lotta shops around the country for just this reason. Zero support anymore from M$, but who cares? I once tried to interest a prominent web blogger in using Linux for his stuff, ’cause he’d been using XP for years. His reply? “I have XP and I like it and Linux is for hobbyists.”

    Tried it again with yet another prominent blogger and he told me he’s dependent on OneNote so no Linux for him.

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