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Okay, So Mr. Suarez And I Disagree On Some Things

I’ll begin by saying I’ve admired Gabe Suarez and his works for many years.  Long-time blog readers of GiA will also know I am a disciple of Jeff Cooper.

Having said that, I am not inflexible.  Of course, I do not have the financial means to make changes to my armament and ammunition at a moments notice.

Here is what Mr. Suarez had to say recently regarding how he differs from Col. Cooper’s teachings, and their history together  (from Facebook):

THE SUAREZ SYSTEM – HISTORICAL CONTEXT
Thursday, June 08, 2017

I was asked how the Suarez material differs from the Modern Technique invented/codified by Jeff Cooper. Here it is…a long read, but it sets down the historical context.

I attended Gunsite in 1990. Cooper was there as were a few of the current “stalwarts” for the modern technique, a couple of SEALs and an entire group of LAPD SWAT with 1911s. I was running my issued weapon, as crappy as it was, a Smith & Wesson 5906 that had been tuned up by Steve Deladio in Long Beach, CA. While I was open minded, I did have some ideas about what was what since I had been working around criminals, gang members and killers for five years.

I had not been in a gunfight yet, but I was around alot of guys who had. In the end, I got top score and won the shootoff, against all of those guys. Cooper and I became friends, and I attended Gunsite every year until 1995. So one could say I became well versed in the Modern Technique. In Cooper’s words in the Intro to Tactical Pistol he described me as, although I would never use them to describe myself, “a master pistolero”. I say that only to illustrate my understanding of the modern technique.

The Modern Technique was born in the competitive field, not the battlefield. I didn’t read this…Cooper told me. The exercise was a man versus man shootoff, involving a draw from the holster, at some ten yards. In that sense, the competition was in fact open. And for that problem, some trends began to emerge. Below eye level shooting, or any moving while drawing – while quite popular with men like Askins, and Bryce, and other accomplished killers for close up shooting – didn’t work so well in that interval.

And since the goal was to hit before the other man hit, there was no need to move or use cover. What won was standing at ease, bringing the pistol up to eye level with both hands, and using the sights. When one man won, others emulated his method and also won.That is the over riding problem with sporting events derived from martial pursuits.

And Cooper, ever the academic, studied and identified the trends, duplicating it in his works.

Now, I respect Cooper’s memory and was proud to call him my friend. And I will say that he was not as close minded as his followers are. I shared the gunfight where I discovered “getting off the X” with him and he said that under those circumstances, it was a brilliant move. I still have that letter somewhere, and I know he mentioned it in his newsletter.

Between my intro to the Modern Technique and the height of my teaching career, I had the good fortune to be in a few gunfights…as the primary shooter. I also investigated a great number of shootings between bad guys and a few with good guy versus bad guys. I began to see trends that the modern technique did not address. As well the gunfight I told Cooper about where the concept of moving off the target line while drawing and shooting was crystallized for me, revealed many shortcomings in the MT methods.

In those days there was no internet or Google. Knowledge was passed on either via scholarly articles in police journals (forget getting anything of value in the gun rags of the day) – or via word of mouth.

In that gunfight, my third I think it was, although alert, I was in a reactive state. I moved to avoid being shot and shot back without a perfect sight picture and killed my adversary. I noted all of this and sought answers. Eventually I came across the works of John Boyd and the OODA cycle which explained in detail why my tactic of movement had allowed me to prevail in a situation where we otherwise would have shot each other. The study continued and by the close of my police career I had used that same method several times with success.

There was no force on force back then. There was Simunitions which was extremely expensive and being a UK company, they despised the idea of lowly civilians using their equipment. Some guys basically stole the gear (I actually mean borrowed for a lengthy period) from their agencies to train, but that was rare…and still is.

As well the anal-retentive range practices precluded anything other than a stationary stand and deliver training system. Eventually however, we brought in Airsoft and worked the training, simulating gunfights over and over and over. We determined that the initiative (who had started things) would determine the successful tactics of each party. We determined that moving kept you safe, while standing, or ceasing movement lead to you getting shot. We also determined those weaver stances, isosceles stances, or any hold on the weapon that was “stance dependent” was untenable in a close range reactive gunfight.

In 2004 or 2005 we had a Force On Force class…the first one, in Las Vegas. I set guys up facing each other at five yards. Armed with airsoft pistol analogs to their real weapons, and suitably protected with face masks, I told them to “GO”. This simulated a true gunfight to a far greater degree than any range exercise these men had ever seen before.

We had extremely accomplished Modern Technique guys totally change their perspectives on gunfighting after that class. We had “Combat Masters” from Taylor’s and Front Sight get their asses handed to them by first time attendees, school teachers, doctors, and students who understood what we were teaching.

And we have been developing it more and more and more ever since. I will tell you and anyone on earth that the gunfighting system taught at the Suarez School is by far the best system to keep you alive in a gunfight, and to help you kill your enemy at the same time. That was the beginning of “our system”.

Now to differences –

Specifically the Modern Technique relies heavily of being alert. In the modern world that is not always possible, and we know that while we try to be thus, the distractions of modern life will impede our incessant “Yellow”. We differ in that we understand the natural inclination, as well as the fact that if one is alert, he will often avoid/evade most problems.

Gunfighting is for when you were taken by surprise and so, a strong reactive understanding is essential. So MT is proactive, which happened maybe half the time. We do not ignore it, but we do not fixate on it either. Our system begins at reactive since that is where most lone operators will be when they realize they need to kill the other man.

Secondly we have the Weaver stance. Perhaps men are stronger today than they were in those days, but we have found in proactive shooting there is no need for the dynamics of the weaver stance with a moderately developed upper body and hand strength. All one has to do is look at what the world’s champion shooters use and you will not find weaver stances there. Often times what is needed is simply getting the weapon out quickly and punching it forward, working the trigger as you do so. Watch a force on force event and you will not see any weaver or isosceles stances. You will see a great deal of one handed shooting.

Next is the matter of Flash Sight Picture. This is but one step in a long continuum of visual references with regard to the handgun. On one extreme you have the pistol just clearing the holster, and the operator relying on pure body index and proximity to the threat. Midway we have meat and metal…the meat of the bad guy surrounding the metal image of the slide. And eventually, arms at full extension, eyes fully on the front sight or red dot, and pure marksmanship at hand. So we do not ignore the “flash sight picture” but it is not a complete use of the sights, or the body indexes either.

The next MT component is Compressed Surprise Break. Again, like the issue of the sights, working the trigger is far more involved with respect to the dynamics of the fight than merely a compressed surprise break. There are times when mashing the trigger just as fast and as hard as you can is called for. Other times we work it like a sniper rifle. All of this, and the way we work the sights is based on distance interval, and the degree of initiative you have in the fight.

Finally, the Semi-automatic pistol in a large caliber. Cooper and his men were very fond of the 1911 in 45 ACP. I don’t carry one of those. I carry a Glock 9mm. I have seen men shot with modern 9mm anti-personnel ammo and have never seen the failures we hear about in the old articles. We have several ER doctors who report that there is virtually no difference between 9mm and the other calibers. So I feel well armed, as do those who know, with a modern 9mm pistol. As well we do not subscribe to the “controlled pairs” or “hammers”. We shoot them to the ground. We rely on bursts. A burst is three to five rounds. Our school solution is a burst to the chest and a burst to the face. And of course, in proactive events, we shot for the face and head exclusively.

That is it in a nutshell. As well, our working of the pistol is vastly different. We are goal driven and focus on the state of the operator in the gunfight. Having been in some, my staff and I realize that analytical academic based weapon manipulations will fail. We also know the physical state one will likely be in. Not one of terror-filled defecation, but certainly one of excitement and adrenaline driven actions.

For example, the malfunctions we have seen discussed here. Rather than the analytical method taught at traditional schools, we understand that if your pistol malfunctions you have just been interrupted in killing the man who was trying to kill you. At such times, and often in low light, you neither have the luxury of examining the weapon, nor often the light to do so.

So we follow a flow-chart process bereft of any decision on the operator’s part other than “did it fix it and can I keep shooting”. So given a stoppage of any sort, the first reaction is an immediate and thoughtless tap rack. If that fixed it, keep killing. That maneuver will fix a failure to fire, as well as a failure to eject (known to traditional students as a stovepipe). It will not fix a feed way stoppage (not really a double feed), or an empty gun. If the initial maneuver fails to remedy the problem, the operator manually rips the on board magazine out and discards it. That will in fact instantly remedy the feed way stoppage in most modern handguns. (We have alternatives for those who must use Beretta M9 or 1911). The operator then loads a fresh magazine on board and manually cycles the slide, fixing either of the last outcomes…feed way stoppage or empty gun. We have students solving malfunctions dynamically and on the move in less than an hour.

Well, there you have it. There may be other things I haven’t thought of. We also favor appendix carry and training from concealment exclusively. We prize hand to hand combat ability and train with knives as well. We like red dot sights on our handguns, and put a premium on physical strength and conditioning.

But we firmly acknowledge our roots.

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I’ll be the first to say that I am not the experienced professional Mr. Suarez is.  I have received funds for my teaching, but I teach mostly The Modern Technique of the Pistol, as distilled by Col. Cooper.  Of course, I do teach one-hand shooting and Isosceles, as these items might be needed.
Taken point-by-point:
Alertness. 
I try to keep in condition YELLOW.  Yes, I am NOT an operator or an assault-team
member.  Alertness may not keep me from being attacked, but it couldn’t hurt?  My personal motto is ‘Pay Attention’.  I contend much of my Life might have ended differently, had I paid attention or perhaps MORE attention.
Weaver Stance, Flash Sight Picture  and Compressed Surprise Break.
I am old, infirmed and generally set-in-my ways.  Weaver has worked for me for 43 years.  And now I am weaker and have less muscle mass.  (Perhaps, if I were 20 years younger, and in better condition?)  I will continue to operate in these manners, unless the situation warrants otherwise.  I’m old fashioned and old-school.  Remember my use of Bruce Lee’s teachings.  Repetition (as with kata) can bring vertical death.  Or, in the case of gunfighting, horizontal death.  Drill, but vary your drills.  Don’t just punch holes in paper, endlessly.
The semiautomatic pistol in a large caliber.
Despite the Pentagon’s recent findings regarding 9mm hollowpoints, I prefer to rely on Physics rather than magic bullets.
And, of course, I always intone the great Jim Cirillo:  “Stopping power BEGINS st 12 gauge!”  Why do I carry a .45?  Because they don’t make a .46!
Red dot sights
Col. Cooper said optics are for rifles.  Mr. Suarez is selling pistol slides with red dot sights.  Perhaps, for the well-trained spec ops guy(?)  But, as an almost-elderly citizen, they are not for me.
Don’t get me wrong, I would love to train under Mr. Suarez, and again own 9mm pistols.
But. given my current circumstances, I don’t see that happening…

A DIY Smoke Bomb ?!

(from The Art of Manliness)

How to Make a DIY Smoke Bomb

You’re lost in the woods, without phone service, and you need a way to signal your location to rescuers on the ground or low-flying aircraft.

Your city is roiled in rioting and chaos, some bad dudes are advancing towards you, and you need to create a distraction to escape and evade them.

It’s a weekend afternoon, your kids are bored, and you’d love to show them a fun and fiery science experiment.

Whether for survival, tactical, or experimental purposes, smoke bombs can be employed in a variety of scenarios.

They’re cheap, small and portable, and incredibly easy to make at home. You can keep them in hiking packs, car glove compartments, garages, etc. You never know when one will come in handy and either provide some weekend entertainment, or perhaps even save your life. Below, I walk you through the simple steps in making homemade smoke bombs on your kitchen stove.

Note: You are of course playing with fire for this experiment, so be prepared and be safe. A bucket of water (or fire extinguisher) is good to have on hand, and when lighting the bomb, use protective eyewear and some sort of breathing filter/mask. The smoke can be toxic, and if the wind blows the wrong way you could be accidentally inhaling it.

Now I remember making such things as a junior high kid, back when a kid could walk into the local drug store and buy 4 oz. bottles of potassium nitrate OTC with no questions asked!  The formulae presented is strikingly similar to a solid rocket fuel we made – not that I’m suggesting anyone do such a thing!  (I’m certain more specific instructions for rocket fuel are available on the Internet, along with search engines notifying the gov’t of the identity of the searchers…)

BE EXTREMELY CAREFUL THE HEATED MIXTURE DOESN’T REACH THE FLASH POINT WHILE MELTING!  LEST YOU HAVE A SMOKE BOMB GO OFF IN YOUR HOUSE!

ANYWAY, the link above and below lead to the the specifics for the smoke bomb.  I highly recommend you do NOT use them for anything nefarious!

How to Make a DIY Smoke Bomb

Let’s all be careful out there!  (Have Fun!)

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 New Phone(book’s) Here!”

Remember?  From Steve Martin’s “The Jerk”?

Well this isn’t about that.  Or how I used to collect telephone books (when I was a PI).  (I’ve already written about that!)

How to be a PI (Lesson 4) pre-1986

Thankfully, my life isn’t ALL Sturm und Drang…

Today, is IS about the new CELLULAR TELEPHONES.  😛

S8 vs S7

My roomie has me on her cellular account, and loves new technology.  Fortunately (for us), the company with whom she contracts allows us to change or upgrade our phones up to three times a year!  At no additional cost!

Conspicuous consumerism and largess?

YES!

(Frankly, if I were living alone, I’d still have a flip phone, and be paying through-the-nose for service!)

The other day she decided she wanted to upgrade, and asked if I wanted to, as well.  (It had been well over a year…)

Duh.

To be fair, I was perfectly happy with my Samsung Galaxy Note 5 (although, I rarely used the note part, many times I cannot read my own writing!)  But I’m certain it was clogged with unneeded and damaging apps, slowing performance, affecting memory and battery life.

At least that’s how I rationalized my decision!

So, off we went to the store…

About an hour and a half later, we left, each with a new Samsung Galaxy S8+ phone!  Of course, not unlike buying firearms, there was an additional charge for the ‘+’ part, as well as the new protective covers!  (J gets hers largely for style; mine so I won’t drop the slick S.O.B.!)  These new phones are never the same dimensions as the old – smart marketing on their part.

Thankfully, it wasn’t much.  We don’t have much.

How great is modern technology?  In a span of less than 20 minutes, the rep placed our old phones adjacent to the new, activated a procedure, and transferred all our telephone contacts, applications, photos, privacy settings etc. to the new phones!

Of course, there’s always tweaking.  Like changing the personalized ring and notification tones.  (J’s ringtone on my phone is the Looney Tunes theme.  Don’t tell her…  😛 )

Now if I can just learn all the new features before she wants another upgrade.

Sigh.

Truly, another First World problem!

(FTC – Samsung and the phone company give us nothing.  We pay (monthly) for everything!  Get your own phone!)

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.

Johnny, We Hardly Knew Ye. 

My college mate, friend, and boss (when I worked security at the closed Legend City amusement park, in the 70s) has passed away.

John Conneally

Fair Winds and Following Seas, My Friend!

We only recently reconnected on Facebook after a 30 year absence.

As Father’s day is looming, I was going to write initially something about my Father, his Father, my Grandfather, or having been a father, etc….

But, you guys have already seen this in this venue.

I was a step-child.  And my step-mother and I were not in agreement on most things.  Like how to treat me.  And my father was largely absent.  My childhood memories are largely not pleasant ones.

Here’s what John’s stepson and one of his daughters had to say about him.

For Father’s Day.

John Conneally was my step-father from my body’s age of 8 1/2 to 14 1/2 and helped Tina Poling-Conneally raise me during those years. He introduced me critical analysis, science fiction, the concepts of leadership, teamwork, discipline, tactics, strategy, deduction and showed me what being brilliant without much solid, applicable way to make it useful for one’s self and society as a whole. As invaluable as they all are the most important one for me is the latter, and it motivates me more and more each day.
John died sometime either last night or today of complications from leukemia, liver failure and lung cancer. He had exposure to horrendous chemical wastes and other environmental hazards while in the Navy which very likely caused his leukemia and the liver and lung cancer came from self-medicating with tobacco and alcohol to keep his highly sensitive and strong soul from feeling and dealing with the internal awarenesses the society he grew up in had zero ability to teach him how to handle; John would have been a capable medicine man, shaman, holistic therapist and healing artist had he been born into this part of the world in the 80’s to today.
He lived as best a life as he could and I am glad I was able to be influenced by his life, both the good and the bad. May his pathways now lead him through all the misconceptions _and_ perfection of his life he just left. May his soul reach out to the wonders he sought and may be achieve them increasingly and unceasingly.
May he be able to choose rebirth, if and when he wants to from the realms of Experience that are without sufferings, pain fear and lack. May his lives and experiences between lives be of benefit to himself and All Beings.

Fare well, John Conneally. I am praying for you and perhaps we’ll meet again someday in much better and healthier ways.

Love to you.

____________

It’s a very hard thing, to think of someone you love in the past tense. Rest in peace, Dad. You are already missed.

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My wish for all of you as parents is to be as well thought of and loved in hindsight, as John’s children have of him.

If only…

 

 

It Happened Again…

A leftist, Democrat, criminal shot up the place!

Four people, including United States Congressman Steve Scalise were shot, the congressman critically.  The shooter reported had asked if the folks on the field were Democrats or Republicans, upon finding out they were the latter, returned to his car, obtained a rifle and handgun and began shooting.

The shooter’s (name redacted) Facebook page was rife with hate toward the Republicans.  He was also a Bernie Sanders supporter.  Bernie has expressed shock at this grievous act.

Of course, if these weren’t politicians, it’d only be a blip on the radar.

In Chicago last weekend, 43 people were shot, 6 of those fatally.

Do we know any of their names?

And, while we’re on the subject, when was the last time a right-winger, Republican, someone NOT a leftist shot up the place?

How many serial shooters are right-of-center?  Or libertarian?

I’ll bet the numbers are small, if any (?)

The Left constantly accuses The Right (tea partisans?) of being violent, bitter, gun owners.  But, when violence occurs, be it shootings, riots, stabbings, WHO are the responsible parties?

And then The Left screams for more gun control, when the police officers doing security on the scene stopped the shooter.  With firearms.

Prayers for all who are injured.  None (from me) for the suspect, who reportedly has been dispatched.

The Pending Ice Age, Or Warming, Or Something?

(courtesy of Old NFO)

Seems like ‘most’ of the things in the ‘news’ or what passes for it lately is either a hoax, an outright lie, or projections on the part of the MSM to ‘convince’ us of something…

I’m just hunkering down and writing this weekend, and piss on the media.

Thank you, Jim!

‘projections on the part of the MSM to ‘convince’ us of something…’

THAT wins the Internets!

Adam West RIP

I was never a fan of Batman, the television series.  Correction, I didn’t understand camp.

(You must understand, I was in junior high, preparing to graduate to high school, and thought myself a serious intellectual.  😛 )

I did remember Adam West from a previous episode of Robert Taylor’s The Detectives, though.  I liked him in that role.

Most persons who become type cast eventually fade away, unless they have amazing talent and staying power.  George Reeves killed himself (or was murdered).  And Baby Boomers will always associate him with the Superman TV series.

Mr. West worked long before he was Batman, and long afterward.  Sometimes as cartoon voice-overs, but not always.  He didn’t just do car shows with the Batmobile.  He embraced the Batman mythos, and made it his.

And, not unlike Patrick Stewart (in American Dad), he made his famous voice even more famous in ‘adult’ cartoons, like Family Guy. (as the Mayor of Quahog).

He passed after a short bout with leukemia.  Having had a blood disease, myself, this definitely got my attention.

He will be missed.

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…