archives

concerns

This tag is associated with 124 posts

I Never Thought I’d Agree With Al Jazeera, Let Alone Post Something From It!

My good friend, veteran (and sometime blogger) Donovan posted this on Facebook, with the following comment:

Well. This is interesting. I agree with this. When even Al Jazeera says you’ve gone too far, I sit up and take notice. This applies to BOTH sides of the political aisle.

In 1943, the US War Department released this video to tell Americans not to fall for fascist rhetoric. Share this video if you’ve heard language like this recently.

AMEN, Brother!

I don’t mind saying, watching this made me a little misty…

Certainly, we should stand up for American Values.  And one of these values is Individual Liberty for All.

(My apologies to Donovan and Tom.  In an earlier post, I confused you two…)

AH! The ‘Stuff’ Of The Internet…

I try to limit the flotsam and jetsam (i.e. Spam) in my primary email inboxes.  Not because I fear viruses (I do!) but because they are a waste of time.

But, spam filters being imperfect, sometimes ‘things’ get through!

Witness below:

(From a free DVD!)

Would You Like To Own A 100% Legal Glock 9mm That The Government Doesn’t Know Exists?…
Using Nothing But A Hacksaw, File, Drill And This Breakthrough FREE DVD You Can Literally Create A Fully Functional Undetectable Glock 9mm In Your Garage In Under An Hour, Just Like This…
P.S. This is currently 100% legal in all 50 states and I’d love to give it to you for free right now…
(Now, if memory serves, BATFE rules state you can ‘make’ your own firearm for personal use.  Whether or not this kind of ‘making’ is allowed under the rules I’m reluctant to test!  And the rules may have been changed w/o them notifying me!)
Not to mention, I’m mechanically challenged.  I can completely disassemble (and reassemble) a standard AR15, a S&W ‘old-school’ revolver and most Browning-designed semiautomatics.  I ‘accurized’ a 1911 by taking a raw barrel bushing and using only my hands, sanded the barrel contact surface until the barrel just made it through.  Took about 4 hours.
BUT, building a ghost gun from parts?!
Yeah, I don’t know…
Plus, what if you are carrying it and questioned by the local police.  Will they know it is technically legal?
And there’s that whole BATFE thing!
Not for me!
To the spam cave!
(If you are interested in such things, I’m certain the Internet will provide the link.  I won’t.)

 

Human Smuggling

Source: The Washington Post

Horrific episode of human smuggling fuels both sides of immigration debate

The discovery of dozens of migrants in a dangerously overheated trailer in San Antonio this (last) weekend has further inflamed the national debate over illegal immigration, particularly sanctuary cities that limit cooperation with federal authorities. In a Facebook post late Sunday, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R) appeared to blame the tragedy on sanctuary policies like those adopted by San Antonio, San Francisco, Chicago and other jurisdictions, which he said “entice” people to illegally cross the border by creating the impression that local authorities will shield them from deportation.

READ MORE

Funny, how there’s a ‘War On Drugs’, but human smuggling seems to be largely ignored by ‘the mainstream media’.  Between tacit approval by both gov’ts and media of low cost/near slave labor (not to mention sex trafficking!), unless there are deaths (see above) no one seems to care!

If it bleeds (or dies of heat exhaustion) it leads!

HK HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS IN DEBT

(from TFB)

German Firm Heckler & Koch Reportedly €170 MILLION in the Red

Via a press release published earlier this month, German gunmaker Hecker & Koch announced it had reduced its financial debt to a mere €170 million (~$194 million US), thanks to an equity increase of €50 million via a capital shares increase. With this, the company will issue approximately 6.6 million new shares, backed up by a capital injection of €50 million, and assistance in refinancing its 9.5% Senior Secured Notes at significantly lower debt. According to the release:

These funds will be provided initially in the form of a shareholder loan to be converted into share capital during the share capital increase to meet the time line of the refinancing of the 2011 9.50% Senior Secured Notes. Minority shareholders of H&K will have the possibility to subscribe for new shares on a pro-rata-basis and on the same economic terms against payment in cash.

Being almost two hundred million dollars in debt does not necessarily mean the German firm is in dire trouble, however, as they have recently gained significant contracts that will help offset this burden. Chief among those is the French AIF contract, estimated to be worth over €300 million ($342 million US). The revenue from this contract alone could offset the debt of the company, which as of 2013 was pegged at slightly higher than the company’s net worth. How the company’s finances will shake out, though, isn’t easy to predict, especially given the outstanding $27 million lawsuit from Orbital ATK over the failure of H&K to deliver XM25 CDTE grenade launchers. Still, the company being in debt to the tune of the entirety of or higher than their net worth does raise cause for concern, if they cannot significantly offset or restructure that debt.

Now, I know there are those among you who will cry “GOOD!”, having suffered the slings-and-arrows of their notoriously poor customer service, especially in the civilian market.

Obviously, the civilians aren’t the only one’s who have suffered…

I have no skin in this game.  The closest I was to owning an H & K was a Century Arms H & K 91 knock-off, with original internals and furniture.  She worked and shot well (when properly lubed).  I liked her.

But, she went the way of the missing vault along with the rest of the collection.

I’m a capitalist.  If a company cannot provide proper delivery or customer service, they deserve to fail!

Perhaps, if there is another incarnation, they will have learned that?

A lesson from Colt?

The Opioid Crisis 

There has been much media attention of late regarding ‘the opioid crisis’.

This is directly parallel to the the so-called Drug War.

Or ‘gun violence’.

Those who wish to insert governmental controls into private actions often label (insert issue here) as a ‘crisis’.

President Nixon started the War On Drugs in 1971. Here 40 years later, billions of dollars later, thousands have been incarcerated, and little illegal drug commerce has been stopped.

And numerous States have decriminalized and/or medicalized previously illegal drugs.

People continue to be shot en mass in Illinois and elsewhere.

And people with legitimate prescriptions are being squeezed more and more because their physicians and pharmacies are. 

By the ‘well meaning’ federal government.

A recent study noted that something like a whopping 1% of those who have opioid prescriptions are abusing them.

The lions share of abuse comes from those who steal, smuggle and illegally obtain such drugs.

Are you surprised?

I’m not.

I sometimes take a relatively low dose narcotic, which I get through a legal prescription, to deal with my chronic pain. I know others who take a much higher dosage than I, who must constantly wrestle with the increasing pressure on the medical community.

While the bad guys make billions from illegal users, largely unchecked.

Read between the lines.

 

And The Adventure Continues, Part Siete

Well, here we are, again…

The contractor returned Thursday to close the hole in the ceiling.  He said their estimate disagreed with the material provided by the insurance company (i.e. they mentioned a repaint, but NOT closing the hole in the ceiling!)  A minimum of THREE WEEKS before they return.

We’ll see.

J., my roomie, continues to have health problems, multiple doctor appointments and physical therapy.  Next is a nerve ablation on her neck, which causes her great pain.

We’ll see.

I discontinued my auto insurance and notified the State my car is no longer on the road, pending sale or donation.  No sale or donation as of yet.  She’s still collecting spider webs…

We’ll see.

J. added me to her auto insurance as an additional driver.

We’ll see.

I’ve my own doctor appointment tomorrow, with a vascular surgeon(?!) regarding my right calf, which continues to be oversized.

We’ll see.

Money continues to be an issue.  Quelle surprise.

We’ll see.

Weather?  Today 111º.  Tomorrow 116º.  Tuesday 118º  That’s The Valley of the Sun in the Summer.  Oh, wait?  It’s not Summer, yet!  😛

We’ll see.

I will update you kind folks as I know more.

Thanks, again for your support.

Glock’s Fault, Or Yours?

(from TFB, in part)

Glock

I recently had the opportunity to re-certify my Glock Armorer Certification as it had expired. I highly recommend that anyone who can attend a Glock Armorer course to do so. Those people include:

  • Employee of Glock Dealer/Distributor
  • Glock Shooting Sports Foundation (GSSF) Member
  • Active/Retired Military/Law Enforcement

All the instructors I have encountered or been taught by are thorough, challenge you, and you genuinely leave feeling more confident in your proficiency at manipulating the weapon and all of its 34 individual pieces.

Classroom book learning aside, what I found to be the most interesting conversation of the day was shooting the breeze with our instructor over lunch. Somehow, the topic of customer service issues came up. We talked about macho guys who limp-wrist a G27, and shade-tree gunsmiths who use their Dremel tool too much and ruin guns. The instructor eventually spit out some numbers that might surprise you.

Glock Customer Service Issues

  • 90% – Shooter/User Error
  • 9.9% – Ammunition
  • 0.05% – Maintenance (Or Lack Thereof)
  • 0.05% – Mechanical

***To be fair to Glock corporate, my instructor, and to cover my own behind, these numbers are not written in stone.

Our instructor was simply stating what he observed over many years of serving and working for the company and continually interacting with the customer service department.

It really begs the question though… If your Glock is failing you, can you look in the mirror and objectively ask, what am I doing wrong? Should I maybe not shoot the world’s cheapest, cruddiest ammo?…

Would love to hear your anecdotal evidence in the comments below. Not saying those numbers listed above are perfect, but 99.9% user error and ammo… oofta! That is incredibly reliable and I will feel like an idiot in front of my friends if have an issue with a Glock because it is probably my fault!

I found this of great interest!  In part because I’ve owned and shot (and carried) a number of Glocks (26, 30, 17) and found them to be universally functional and without ‘problems’.  Of course, unlike one of my Blogmothers™ (Tamara), this was done in strings of 50, or 100 rounds in range conditions, with cleaned firearms.

No stress tests for Guffaw’s Glocks!

And, I still prefer walnut and blued (or stainless) steel to polymer.

So much in the firearms world is the result of human error (think negligent discharge!)  Certain, what you feed them, technique and other human factors could be of more importance than mechanical defects?

I expect to hear from those who love Glocks, as well as those who hate them.

Get the party started…

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

 

FBI Court Filing Reveals Grand Jury Targeted Hillary Clinton


(from Judicial Watch…)


Just when you think we’ve learned most of what there is to learn about Hillary Clinton’s emails a new mole pops up out of the hole.

This week Judicial Watch released State Department documents including a declaration from FBI Special Agent E.W. Priestap, the supervisor of the agency’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email activities, stating that the former secretary of state was the subject of a grand jury investigation related to her BlackBerry email accounts.

The declaration was produced in response to Judicial Watch’s lawsuit seeking to force Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to take steps to “recover emails of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton” and other U.S. Department of State employees (Judicial Watch, Inc. v. Rex Tillerson (No. 1:15-cv-00785)).  We originally filed the lawsuit against then-Secretary of State John Kerry.  The Trump State Department filing includes details of the agency’s continuing and shameful refusal to refer the Clinton email issue to the Justice Department, as the law requires.

In the filing, Priestap declares under penalty of perjury that the FBI “obtained Grand Jury subpoenas related to the Blackberry e-mail accounts, which produced no responsive materials, as the requested data was outside the retention time utilized by those providers.”

On April 30, 2015, Judicial Watch sued Kerry after the State Department failed to take action on a letter sent to Kerry “notifying him of the unlawful removal of the Clinton emails and requesting that he initiate enforcement action pursuant to the [Federal Records Act],” including working through the Attorney General to recover the emails.

After initially being dismissed by the district court, Judicial Watch’s lawsuit was revived on appeal by a decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on December 27, 2016.

While at the State Department, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton conducted official government business using an unsecured email server and email accounts. Her top aides and advisors also used non-“state.gov” email accounts to conduct official business. Clinton left office February 1, 2013.

The FBI convened a grand jury to investigate Hillary Clinton in 2016. Why is this information being released only now?

It is disturbing that the State Department, Justice Department, and FBI are still trying to protect Hillary Clinton.  President Trump needs to clean house at all these agencies.

 

 

Don’t Do Anything Rash! (The Adventure Continues…)

SO…

I go to see my primary doctor yesterday afternoon.  She confirms ‘yes’, I DO have a rash of undetermined origin, now permeating most of my body.  My edema in my right calf is of significant size, and has NOT diminished when horizontal.

She prescribes a synthetic corticosteroid to deal with the rash.  She is MORE concerned about the edema.

She sends me to a diagnostic center for an ultrasound of the leg.  (I must drive myself, as J. is still recovering from her shoulder surgery and cannot drive.)

It’s either this, or she admits me to the hospital.  She’s concerned I might have a blood clot(!)

So, it’s back from central Phoenix to Chandler (nearer to where I live) for the imaging.  It’s approaching 1700, but they are waiting for me. (My doc has pull!)

I wore sandals I don’t usually wear, so she could get a better look at my legs and feet (wrestling with socks and ‘Ed’ the really big shoe can be difficult when swollen.  The sandals are uncomfortable and make driving difficult.

And I cannot afford to Uber.

J. is with me for moral support and to listen to my cursing.

Finally, we find the place and I get the ultrasound.  NO CLOTS!  😛  They contact my doc, who prescribes a broad spectrum antibiotic and schedules me to return Friday @ 1300 for follow-up.  She does this all herself and makes certain she speaks with me about diet to accompany the antibiotic.  Initially, I missed her call (loud surroundings) and she called back and left a message.  Then she kept calling until she could speak with me personally.

I have a great physician!

The Good News is I picked up the meds.  The Bad News is neither is recommended for evening use.  So, another night of calamine lotion looms.

I think I received three hours of sleep.  J. has another physical therapy appointment this afternoon.  AND I TOOK MY FIRST PREDNISONE THIS MORNING!  😛

C’mon work!

Time will tell.  It’s been about two hours, and I feel slightly less itchy.  (Perhaps that’s just wishful thinking?)

I will keep everyone advised.  (No Clots – Hooray!)  😛

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…