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Refinding Music And Tech

I’ve always been behind the times in both music and technology to deliver said music.  Especially since I got married in my late twenties and had a family and a job, with all the requisite trials and tribulations therein.

I had (and still have) vinyl, went to cassettes, then CDs.  I bought an MP3 player in the early 2000s.  But never had the money to fill it.

Life.  It’s both a cereal and a board game.  And my listening to music got somehow waylaid.  😦

But, I’m here alone in my rented room, doing my morning routine with the blog.  And something was missing.

I tried Pandora for a while, but it never hooked me.

J. told me recently about Spotify.  So, I thought I’d give it a try.  On both my PC and my new cell phone!  (NOW with earbuds that actually fit!)

Maybe I’ve missed ‘my’ music too much, but now I’m immersed in it via Spotify.  Free, with a few commercials every so often.  Or, one can pay.

Of course, I’ve no funds.

So, FREE it is!

Currently, I’ve been vacillating between Dave Brubeck, Gordon Lightfoot, and the Person of Interest soundtrack.

Yeah, I’m eclectic!

😛

(FTC – Spotify gave me nothing save the free music they give everyone!  go away!)

 

In An 8-0 Decision…

(from Fox News)

The United States Supreme Court…

In win for Asian-American rock band the Slants, and possible boost for the Washington Redskins, Supreme Court rules that the government can’t refuse to register trademarks that are considered offensive.

More on this: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2017/06/19/supreme-court-rules-trademark-law-banning-offensive-names-is-unconstitutional.html

AGAIN, free speech is not about that with which we agree!

(Just when you thought the Supreme Court was worthless…)

THE COVERT INVASION OF THE WEST

April 21, 2017  (Suarez International)

There are cultural myths that all civilizations seem to adopt. Once they do, it is virtually impossible for them to let go of such myths, even when pursuing them is no longer viable. With the west is the myth of egalitarian inclusion. The idea that all men want the same things, that we can all get along, and that with acceptance and understanding, we can all live together in peace under beautiful rainbows.

Such a naive world view ignores the incessant jihad that the west has faced for a generation. And that jihad, both violent and overt, as well as cultural and covert.

Just this week, we not only had a Black American Jihadist shoot and kill a number of “white devils” in California, but we also had a French Policeman killed and another seriously injured in a proactive jihad ambush in Paris. It has become so common, and seemingly accepted that I will bet you cannot name all the terrorist events in the USA in the last 12 months.

Another factor in this is the west’s abject fear of being considered unfair or (gasp) racist. Even if we stop to consider that a religion or a political movement is not based on race, the language remains. And the word has power over westerners. At some point westerners, and I suspect the Europeans will be first, will have to ask themselves what is the greater danger – being called a racist or losing their civilization.

Another third cultural habit of the west is self-hatred and a deliberate ignoring of history. The self-hatred I don’t know whence it came. I will bet it has some basis in liberal-socialist thinking.

Perhaps one of the readers can comment.

But the ignorance of history is a crucial element here…specially for the young. History is rewritten to fit the modern narratives which support the other cultural habits and myths. But not knowing the real story is a problem. What would a man do, for instance, who had never been told that a hot stove will burn his hand. He would not know what he faced when coming in contact with one. Ignorant of the effects of hot steel on his hand, he would go ahead with his plans to touch it.

Islam has been on a mission to conquer and convert the world for a thousand years. At first, as shown in the video below, the methods have been via military invasion and conquest. But today, the would-be invaders are using far more subtle means. Theirs is the slippery slope of compromise and appeasement…the “cultural” and “societal” jihad that some writers speak of. And with every point of compliance from western nations, they take another small step toward their objectives. The west has helped in that mission by its policies. And if steps are not taken to change the west will lose…and it will lose by defeating itself.

So here is a history lesson. Its not very long, but it is informative.

https://youtu.be/c7y2LRcf4kc

 

Image may contain: 7 people, crowd
Just yesterday, ISIS attacked people at a Shiite shrine in Iran.  This evil is not just for Western democracies.  Of course, the  Shia Iranians have their own agenda.
It’s been estimated that 10 to 15% of Muslims worldwide have been ‘radicalized’.  While still a small minority, that’s not an insignificant number.
Islam is the fastest growing religion in the World.
This ‘problem’ is not easily solved.

‘I Consider Myself A Guest Here’

Canadian William Shatner REFUSES

To Trash Trump: ‘I Consider Myself a

Guest Here’

William Shanter, the ICONIC Star Trek actor himself, refuses to talk ill of President Donald Trump regardless of his feelings for politics. In a recent interview he had with the Daily Beast he spoke all about it, and his new book, ‘Spirit of the Horse’. During this interview, Shatner made it really clear that his name was not to be added to an open letter that was released out of Hollywood last year denouncing Trump’s candidacy.

“I didn’t do that. I would never have done that,” the actor said of the anti-Trump letter posted on the Trek Against Trump Facebook page last September.

There were however, notable personalities of the original star trek series like George Takei (of course) who played Hikaru Sulu, and Star Trek Into Darkness director JJ.Abrams, who was a very avid Clinton supporter did sign that letter.

The Beast reporter did attempt more than once to get Shatner to dish on Trump, and the actor stuck to his guns refusing to do so, making it very clear that he wasn’t willing to speak ill of the president.

“I don’t want to discuss Trump or [George] Takei,” Shatner said, adding: “Listen, I’m Canadian and I’m apolitical. I love America. I consider myself a guest here.”

“I won’t do anything that might get me deported,” the 86-year-old star joked.

The Priceline pitchman, known best for his role as Captain James T. Kirk, commander of the U.S.S. Enterprise, also revealed that while he and Abrams have discussed him having a role in the rebooted Star Trek film franchise, the director hasn’t extended the offer.

“I’ve met with J.J. Abrams, who seems to be running the film franchise now,” Shatner said. “Though I’ve repeatedly expressed my interest in being in one of the Star Trek movies they seem to have no interest in bringing back old Captain James T. Kirk.”

Shatner, who made his small-screen debut as Captain Kirk in 1966, also revealed that he has never seen any of the new films.

A lifelong lover of horses, Shatner’s new book Spirit of the Horse is a love letter to his four-legged friends.

Although he is very liberal in his political beliefs, he knows how to stand for those beliefs without being ridiculous and out of line like his other Hollywood friends.

Yep. I could sit next to him on a plane, introduce myself as a conservative and he’d like me.

That’s how it’s suppose to be.

h/t Facebook, I Have the Truth.com

AMEN, Mr. Shatner and Mr. Wendal!

Now, I’m not an unabashed fan of the current President (although he is certainly a vast improvement over the last one!)  Having said that, I tire of the juvenile and sometimes criminal actions taken against the President.  Like it or not, he IS the President!  And deserves some respect.

(I’d preferred a more libertarian President, stopping this ongoing assault on the Fourth Amendment.  One with a better speaking style.  Wish in one hand…)

To see and hear (most) Hollywood types continue to attack and beat on him is more than shameful.  YES, everyone has a right to an opinion.

But, lets be adult about it, shall we?  Disagree on policy choices, not hairstyles!

 

Press Check, Much?

(from TFB, in part)

Rebuttal: “The Folly of the‘Press Check’”

Browsing through the interwebs as we writers do, I came across an interesting proposition from one Mr. Jeff Gonzales that the “press check” is not appropriate for …”when you strap a firearm onto your body (unless the instructor specifically asks you to use an unloaded pistol or rifle).”

I disagree. I’m no Navy SEAL like Mr. Gonzales, but this assertion fails my logical tests.

Unlike rifles where it is easy in an administrative situation to see the double-stack magazine change sides, most handguns are single-feed weapons and as such, it is near impossible to tell that the weapon is loaded without one of two things – a loaded chamber indicator (this is why I like them) or a press check. Press checks are ideal for administrative times – exactly when you are strapping a firearm to one’s body. In fact, administrative handling is the one time you should be handling a firearm unless drawing to fire or de-gun.

Should one press check in the middle of combat? I would assert the situation dictates it – but it’s likely a hard no in almost all circumstances. But, in an admin function why would one not want to verify their readiness? More on this below.

Mr. Gonzales continues:

 “Why do students want to perform a weapons check? Because we as instructors have failed. We’ve failed to encourage and empower students to understand the importance of readiness.”

Now, I will say that Mr. Gonzales is quite right on his points on willingness, attitude, and readiness, but readiness includes having the weapon ready to perform and if one does not have a loaded chamber indicator – the only way to do that is to press check the gun.

We want to perform a weapons check because we are learned and empowered to actually understand that malfunctions happen. I am checking to make sure that the most critical shot – my first one – has the highest chances of success.

I instruct my students on the importance of handling themselves responsibly with loaded firearms as soon as they can handle their gun safely.

There is nothing worse than drawing your firearm, aiming it at your attacker and hearing a click. To reduce the odds of that happening, start as you mean to finish.

There is absolutely no logical argument here. How is a press check not handling oneself responsibly so long as the firearms safety rules are followed? Then, to imply that BECAUSE one did the press check that they are going to draw a dead trigger is nuts. Do it right – ensure your weapon is in battery and in fact one of the key points of the earlier argument of readiness.

If you feel the need to press check your firearm, you need to ask yourself why. And do whatever it takes to be confident in yourself and your gun’s condition. So that you’re as ready as you can be to fight. And win.

This is a flat-out oxymoron. How can one assert that one should do “whatever it takes to be confident” yet throw out one of the processes that makes one confident?

I press check my guns to ensure that I am ready to win – either combat or competition. Press checking is simple and follows an old maxim: “trust, but verify.”

I choose to verify.

Personally, I have only press-checked at the range, prior to dry practice, or prior to starting a string in competition.  Those few times where the possibility of actual combat have occurred (as with entering a previously locked building as a security guard, or my own home on a couple of occasions after finding the door ajar (yes, I know, I teach retreat to a safe location and call the PD, too!) I was too focused on clearing the area rather than checking to see if the pistol that was a moment prior in my holster was properly chambered!

Taking such action seems to me to be unnecessary, and possibly dangerous.

I guess I agree with the Seal.

YRMV

 

Maxine Waters Admits: Obama Has Put In Place a Secret Database ‘Everything On Everyone’

Liveleak unearthed an interview with Maxine

Waters where she admits that because eventually

he would not be in charge, that Obama has created

a HUGE “Secret Database”!

Waters was speaking in an interview on the Roland Martin show when he asked her, “What happens in 2016?

Waters very candidly admits:

“The President has put in place an organization with the kind of database that no one has ever seen before in life,” Representative Maxine Waters told Roland Martin on Monday.

 

“That’s going to be very, very powerful,” Waters said. “That database  will have information about everything on every individual on ways that it’s never been done before and whoever runs for President on the Democratic ticket has to deal with that. They’re going to go down with  that database and the concerns of those people because they can’t get around it. And he’s [President Obama] been very smart. It’s very powerful what he’s leaving in place.”

That video only has 13,000 views. This was not done in secret. This video and interview was seen little and talked about less when it came out in 2013.

We are also reporting today that Freedom Watch has uncovered some disgusting information as well.

Our own Nancy Hayes reports that a massive amount of data on 47 hard drives from a government whistle blower was turned over to the Freedom Watch group recently.

Americans should be OUTRAGED! It looks pretty solid that Illegal and unconstitutional electronic surveillance was committed by the Obama administration. Not only did the illegal electronic surveillance involve Obama, it involved several top level officials within the NSA, CIA, DHS, FBI and Treasury Department. Heads should roll! President Trump was right when he said he was “wiretapped” by Obama and “The Hammer” is about to go down.

The information proves Obama and company spied on everyone. He has spied on Trump! He has most likely spied on many of you!

I remember how J. Edgar Hoover had something on everyone.  This enabled him to not be fired as FBI Director.  When he died (code name Open Territory) everyone scrambled to find the hidden files.

Or maybe that was just a Robert Ludlum book…?

Who knows?

The scary part is people like this keep getting reelected…

h/t Joe for America (in part)

The “Lawful Purpose and Self Defense Act” Has Been Proposed!

Rep. Rob Bishop Introduces the

(from NRA-ILA)

On Wednesday, May 24, 2017, Chairman of the House Committee on Natural Resources Rob Bishop (R-UT) introduced H.R. 2620, the “Lawful Purpose and Self Defense Act.”This bill would remove ATF’s authority to use the “sporting purposes” clauses in federal law in ways that could undermine the core purpose of the Second Amendment. Under Chairman Bishop’s legislation, all lawful purposes – including self-defense – would have to be given due consideration and respect in the administration of federal firearms law.

While the NRA’s announcement above is poorly written, the message is clear.  WE (gun civil rights advocates) are becoming the vanguard.

Sporting purpose never had a place in the Second Amendment.  Period.  Nice we are on the right side, for once.

 

Veterans Affairs Has 346 Workers Who Do ONLY Union Work

(from Judicial Watch, in part)

An estimated 346 employees in the Department of Veterans Affairs do no actual work for taxpayers. Instead, they spend all of their time doing work on behalf of their union while drawing a federal salary, a practice known as “official time.”That’s according to a report by the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office. But exactly what those VA workers are doing and why so many are doing it is not clear. The VA doesn’t track that, and the GAO report offers no clue.

Rep. Jody Arrington, R-Texas, a member of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, thinks the number on 100 percent official time may be much higher. He also notes that the 346 workers don’t include those who spend most, not all, of their time doing union work.

“The lack of accountability at the VA when it comes to monitoring official time suggests it might be worse,” said Arrington, who has introduced legislation that would require the department to track the use of official time, among other reforms.

Pointing to the waiting list scandals at the department, Arrington said the official time situation is reflective of the “broken culture at the heart of the VA” and adds, “I haven’t heard one good, acceptable reason why the practice has continued.”

The VA was not eager to discuss the matter with the Washington Examiner. After several days of inquiries, it responded with the following statement: “VA believes that the appropriate use of official time can be beneficial and in the public interest as stated in the Federal Service Labor-Relations Statute, which governs how executive branch agencies treat official time. VA takes the position that labor and management have a shared responsibility to ensure that official time is authorized and used appropriately. VA practices are in compliance with the Federal Service Labor-Relations Statute.”

Official time is allowed under the 1978 Civil Service Reform Act. The idea behind it is to ensure that a federal employee who is also a union official won’t be penalized for being away from work if he or she is negotiating a contract or addressing a worker grievance, for example. It is essentially a trade-off for the limitations put on federal unions, such as prohibitions on striking.

At least 700 federal workers do nothing but work on official time, according to the GAO and data obtained from various Freedom of Information Act requests. The VA uses official time far more than any other agency.

“Employees spent approximately 1,057,00 hours on official time for union representation activities … In addition, the data show that 346 employees spent 100 percent of their time on official time,” the GAO found in a January report.

It is possible that even those figures are conservative. The GAO said the said the VA’s poor monitoring meant the data was “inconsistent and not reliable.”

The GAO didn’t know what the employees are doing with all of that time. “We just didn’t get into that in that particular study,” said Cindy Barnes, the GAO’s director of education, workforce and income security issues and author of the report.

Part of the explanation is that the VA is one of the largest federal agencies with 373,000 workers, making it second only to the Pentagon in the sheer size of its workforce. About 250,000 VA workers are covered by collective bargaining agreements, according to the GAO, citing 2012 data. Arrington puts the covered figure at 285,000.

By comparison, the Department of Homeland Security has 240,000 workers and the Department of Commerce has just under 44,000 workers. But those departments get by with proportionately far fewer people working exclusively on official time. DHS has 39, while Commerce has just four.

Another factor is that the VA’s workforce is represented by no less than five unions: The American Federation of Government Employees, the National Association of Government Employees, National Nurses United, the National Federation of Federal Employees and the Service Employees International Union.

National Nurses United representative Irma Westmoreland was the only union official willing to talk about the practice with the Washington Examiner. She is one of five nurses union members who work exclusively on union time at the VA. The union has another nine who spent 80 percent of their time at the VA on official time, she said.

Westmoreland said her work was necessary because nurses can’t simply stop taking care of a patient to do something like address a worker grievance. People such as her do the union work and make it possible for the other nurses to focus on providing care.

“I have to travel across the country working with 23 VA facilities in four time zones,” she said. “The management teams want somebody at 100 percent official time so they don’t have to pull somebody out of care.”

But not everyone at the VA is involved in care. So what are the other 341 exclusive official time workers doing? Westmoreland had no insight.

“I don’t know how the other people do it,” she said.

American Federation of Government Employees President J. David Cox told Arrington’s subcommittee in February that official time involved activities such as “designing and delivering joint training of employees on work-related subjects and introduction of new programs and work methods that are initiated by the agency or by the union.”

He added that “in no way did the [February GAO] report suggest that the use of official time presents problems for the department.” The report sought only to quantify the amount of time used.

Arrington argues that the practice has to change if the VA is ever to be truly reformed. He has sponsored the Veterans, Employees and Taxpayer Protection Act, which would require the VA to track the use of official time. It also would prohibit employees involved with direct patient care from spending more than a quarter of their work hours on union activities and bar any VA employee from spending more than half of their time on official time.

The legislation would effectively put VA employees under right-to-work protection. The VA would be prohibited from agreeing to union contracts that force workers to join or otherwise support a union as a condition of employment.

Westmoreland said she has no trouble with better tracking the use of official time but warns against putting any limitations on its use.

“It makes it very difficult if you cannot have set official time,” she said.  (The Washington Examiner)

Our tax dollars at work?  Hardly.  The most regular visitor to the White House during the last administration was a big union guy.  One hopes this has changed, and that the inappropriate union influence in the federal government has ended.Or, as least, tricked down to STOP!

 

ISIS And US Progressives – What’s The Difference?

(From Bayou Renaissance Man, in part)
Vox points out:

As he says:  “What, precisely, is the difference? There is no difference. It’s just vandalizing history of which one does not approve.”

Methinks he has a point.

Peter

I’m NOT A Lawyer

I don’t play one on television, or the Internet.

Nor does Peter (Bayou Renaissance Man)

REGARDLESS

He has something of importance to pass on to us.  Most of us know all or parts of this, but we really need to internalize it.

Lest we make a fatal mistake.

Never let a knife-wielding attacker get within range! In general, if you have to use violence to defend yourself, you may have to justify that in court.  If you use potentially or actually lethal force, the chances of having to justify it in court go up exponentially. One of your primary defenses will be how you were trained, what you learned during your education process, and how your defensive mindset was formed.  As part of that, it helps to document your training through class notes (taking them yourself if necessary), video clips of the instructor (often found on YouTube), recordings, etc.  You can also introduce as evidence material from others that reinforces and supports your defensive mindset. I’d like to show you one such piece of material this morning, particularly because Antifa, the progressive far-left-wing movement behind much of the anti-Trump and anti-conservative unrest of recent months, was advertising credit-card-sized concealed knives on its Web site.  These things may be tiny, relatively speaking, but they can do an awful lot of damage – potentially disabling damage, if not inflicting permanent injury such as the loss of an eye or a severed nerve – in the hands of someone who knows how to use one.  The odds are increasing that people like us may run into one of these demonstrations – so it behooves us to be prepared to counter such violence, in defense of ourselves and our loved ones. Here’s what even a very small knife can do to a human being.  I recommend watching the video in full-screen mode.

Remember that video.  Bookmark it and/or save a copy for future reference.  Remember Antifa’s attempts to sell knives of similar size to its members, and their open discussion about the need to arm and train themselves.  Remember it if you run into them while about your lawful business . . . and keep them out of knife range, by whatever means may be necessary (and, of course, legal – that goes without saying).  If you ever have to justify that decision and/or your actions, play back that video in court, point out Antifa’s discussions and its efforts to sell knives to its members, and make it clear that you considered yourself in imminent danger of suffering similar injuries unless you stopped them.  It’s a compelling argument.

Peter

AMEN, Peter, amen…

REMEMBER your Tueller Drill people!

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…