Liberty is an inherently offensive lifestyle. Living in a free society guarantees that each one of us will see our most cherished principles and beliefs questioned and in some cases mocked. That psychic discomfort is the price we pay for basic civic peace. It's worth it. It's a pragmatic principle. Defend everyone else's rights, because if you don't there is no one to defend yours. -- MaxedOutMama

I don't just want gun rights... I want individual liberty, a culture of self-reliance....I want the whole bloody thing. -- Kim du Toit

The most glaring example of the cognitive dissonance on the left is the concept that human beings are inherently good, yet at the same time cannot be trusted with any kind of weapon, unless the magic fairy dust of government authority gets sprinkled upon them.-- Moshe Ben-David

The cult of the left believes that it is engaged in a great apocalyptic battle with corporations and industrialists for the ownership of the unthinking masses. Its acolytes see themselves as the individuals who have been "liberated" to think for themselves. They make choices. You however are just a member of the unthinking masses. You are not really a person, but only respond to the agendas of your corporate overlords. If you eat too much, it's because corporations make you eat. If you kill, it's because corporations encourage you to buy guns. You are not an individual. You are a social problem. -- Sultan Knish

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

I've Seen This Happen

Following a 360 Ton haul truck on a rain-slick pit road.  (That's how much it carries, not what it weighs.)  Exciting doesn't cover it:


I'm just glad it wasn't behind me.

UPDATE: The Cat in this video is a 777 - a baby haul truck. It's only rated at about 100 tons.  The big ones these days (like the 797) go 400 tons.  This truck would easily fit in the bed of a 797.

Gun Pr0n - Something You Don't See Every Day

A tactical shopping cart:


Not much of a shield in front of him, and I'm guessing the cart doesn't absorb recoil all that well either, but it looks like it could carry a pretty good load of ammo!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

This Blog is Twelve

I just realized today that I missed the 12th blogiversary of TSM.  It was May 14.

See last year's post to understand why.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

An Added Incentive to Come to the Rendezvous

If you're a blogger, there's extra added incentive to come to the tenth annual Gun Blogger Rendezvous:

Ammo.

This year LuckyGunner.com is organizing the Rendezvous, and being an ammo supplier, they've stepped up to the plate.  If you're a blogger and register before June 1, you will receive a voucher good for $150 worth of ammo.

Registration is $35.

Helluva deal.

Quote of the Day - Free Speech Edition

From an answer over at Quora.com to the question: "What do normal Americans think about 'Draw Prophet Muhammed Cartoon Contest' organized in Garland, Texas?  Was the event about freedom of speech or did it focus on developing anti-Islam sentiments?"

The whole answer is excellent, but I wanted to archive this portion:
We are as viciously, passionately, ready-to-wage-warringly, married to our freedoms as Muslims are to their prophet Muhammad. Never presume that your beliefs are somehow magically more super-duper special than ours just because they are attached to a religious idea. Never fool yourself into believing that others aren't as dedicated to their philosophical perspective just because you think that your belief is right and theirs is wrong.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Gun Blogger Rendezvous X

Ladies and Gentlemen, boys and girls!  There WILL be a Tenth Annual Gun Blogger Rendezvous!  Originally conceived and executed by Mr. Completely, this year the helm is being run by multi-year sponsor LuckyGunner.com.  One other change, the date has been moved up slightly to August 20-23.  The venue remains the very nice Silver Legacy Hotel and Casino in Reno, Nevada.  All the details for early registration are available here.

The tentative schedule so far:
Thursday, August 20: The rendezvous kicks off with a welcome dinner at The Silver Legacy Hotel & Casino. Early arrivals will allow time to stock up on ammo, get a lay of the land in Reno, and check out some of the local gun culture.

Friday, August 21: Breakfast followed by a day of long range rifle and pistol shooting at the Washoe County Shooting Facility. After the range we'll head back to the Silver Legacy for dinner and to hear about some of the new products hitting the shelves.

Saturday, August 22: Breakfast followed by an introduction to International Steel Shooting Association Action Pistol shooting at the Washoe County Shooting facility. Expect a lot of time to hit the range Saturday! That night, we'll reconvene at the Silver Legacy for dinner, our prize giveaways and the raffle.

Sunday, August 23: Breakfast at the Silver Legacy followed by a trip to U.S. Firearms Academy where we'll have a chance to check out Reno Guns, Battleborn Firearms and experience a digital scenario shooting.
And of course, every evening the Hospitality Room will be open for bloggers and readers and other interested types to gather and talk.

I've attended all nine of the previous Rendezvous' and enjoyed every one. If you're a gun blogger or a reader and have any interest in meeting some of the people you interact with on the web every day, plus get to throw a lot of lead downrange, I urge you to come to the tenth iteration of this event! If you're unfamiliar, just click this link for my complete coverage of previous events.

UPDATE:  And if you're a blogger, there's an added incentive to go.

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Eulogy

Here's the eulogy I gave for my Mom at her memorial service Saturday:

Too Little, Too Late?

An interesting op-ed piece on CNN.com was brought to my attention by way of Facebook.

Read 'Lord of the Flies' comes to Baltimore.

Then read my June, 2004 piece "(I)t's most important that all potential victims be as dangerous as they can."

Friday, May 01, 2015

May Victims of Communism Day


Today is the seventh annual Victims of Communism Day, a day to remember the people murdered by their own governments in their quest to achieve a "worker's paradise" where everyone is equal, where "to each according to his needs, from each according to his abilities" is the beautiful dream lie.  R.J. Rummel, Professor Emeritus of Political Science at the University of Hawaii, has calculated that the total number of victims of Communism - that is, the domestic victims of their own governments - in the USSR, China, Vietnam, North Korea and Cambodia is 98.4 million people.  For all Communist governments during the 20th Century, he puts the estimate at approximately 110 million.  And this wasn't in warfare against other nations, this was what these governments did to their own people - "breaking eggs" to make their utopian omlette.

Six million Jews were murdered during the Holocaust, and another six million people the Nazis decided were "undesirable" went with them.  "Never again" is the motto of the modern Jew, and many others just as dedicated.  But "again and again and again" seems to be the rebuke of history.

The Communists are hardly alone in these crimes.  Rummel estimates that the total number of people murdered by their own governments during the 20th Century is on the close order of 262 million, but the single biggest chunk of that truly frightening number is directly due to one pernicious idea:  That we can make people better.

Why do I own guns?  For a number of reasons, but one of them is this:
And how we burned in the camps later, thinking: What would things have been like if every Security operative, when he went out at night to make an arrest, had been uncertain whether he would return alive and had to say good-bye to his family? Or if, during periods of mass arrests, as for example in Leningrad, when they arrested a quarter of the entire city, people had not simply sat there in their lairs, paling with terror at every bang of the downstairs door and at every step on the staircase, but had understood they had nothing left to lose and had boldly set up in the downstairs hall an ambush of half a dozen people with axes, hammers, pokers, or whatever else was at hand?  --  Alexandr Solzhenitzyn, The Gulag Archipelago

--

The Second Amendment is a doomsday provision, one designed for those exceptionally rare circumstances where all other rights have failed - where the government refuses to stand for reelection and silences those who protest; where courts have lost the courage to oppose, or can find no one to enforce their decrees. However improbable these contingencies may seem today, facing them unprepared is a mistake a free people get to make only once. -- Judge Alex Kozinski, dissenting, Silveira v. Lockyer, denial to re-hear en banc, 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, 2003.
I intend to repeat this post each May 1 that I continue to run this blog.  This is the fifth time I have put it up.

Four years ago, Sipsey Street Irregulars had a post to go along with this one.  It's still up.  STRONGLY RECOMMENDED.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

And Now for Something Completely Different: Gun Pr0n!

Since this is supposed to be a gun blog (albeit lately it hasn't been much of a blog at all), I thought I'd change tack and, you know, post something gun related.

Last week my dad asked me to take a couple of guns that he no longer had need for and that I didn't want, and see what I could get for them.  So I took them to my favorite Merchant O'Death and was very pleasantly surprised at what the shop was willing to give me for them.  While I was there, MOD once again brought me a couple of things out of the "Special" display case, trying to tempt me. This is usually a very bad thing for my wallet. The first thing he showed me was a 6" 3-screw Smith Model 29, a Dirty Harry special - beautifully blued, no lock, hammer-mounted firing pin, in very good condition.  I haven't succumbed to .44 addiction yet, so I was able to resist temptation.

However, when he pulled this one out of the case, I couldn't help myself:


That's an old Clark Custom IPSC Open class Bullseye gun probably from the early late 80's 90's.  (See first comment.)  It would be equally good as a bowling pin gun.  Check this thing out:




Note the Remington 1100 cocking handle in place of the rear iron sight:


And the hand-done stippling on the frontstrap and the Allen screws on the front of the dust cover for adjusting fit of the slide to the frame:


From the wear & tear on the scope mount, this gun has obviously seen a LOT of use:


The first thing I looked at when he handed it to me was the price tag. Let's just say it was WELL under $1k.

It followed me home.  Soon as I get a chance, I'm going to see how it shoots.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Thank You All

I appreciate the notes of sympathy and condolence my last post (and the associated FB post) have drawn.  Thanks to all of you.  It's really appreciated.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

She's Gone

Blogging will be even more sparse than usual.  Mom passed away this evening.  She was at home, and passed quietly.  Her last two surviving siblings had traveled from Virginia to see her. They got there in time.

Take care, Mom.  We'll miss you.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Bill Whittle's Latest

I've been remiss. This one's been up a while.


I knew it was bad, but not THAT bad.

Quote of the Day - Brad Torgerson Edition

"Flaming rage nozzles of tolerance."
If you haven't been following the Sad Puppies assault to wrest control of Science Fiction's Hugo award away from the tiny Leftist clique that has been running it for the last decade or so, this won't mean much to you, but Brad's piece really is more widely directed than at just this one battleground.

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

More Global Climate Change

I'm in Burlington, Vermont this week.  This is the view out my window at just after 6PM local time today:


Yes, it's April 8th.

Flying in to Burlington on Monday, we passed over Lake Champlain where I noticed that it seemed at least 90% covered in ice.  From the Burlington Free Press, February 17:
For the second year in a row, the lake appears to be frozen from one side to the other. National Weather Service high resolution satellite images show ice pretty much everywhere on the lake.

That's enough for meteorologists to declare the lake as "closed" or frozen over, said Peter Banacos, a meteorologist at the NWS office in South Burlington.

Burlington has had below freezing temperatures throughout February, he said. This weekend Vermonters experienced wind chills as low as minus 40, which likely consummated the freeze-over.

The lake froze completely in 2014, but this is the first time in a decade that the lake has closed two years a row. Vermonters last saw the lake completely freeze consecutively in 2004 and 2005.
The instructor of the class I'm taking here went down to the lake last night. He reported the ice is still "about a foot thick."

Atmospheric CO2 is now at 401PPM.

Current sunspot activity is low and declining.

I know where my money is riding on this question.

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Your Moment of Zen

Haven't done one of these in a while:

 photo Zen9.jpg

Absolutely Correct

Seen at Facebook, reposted here.  Click for full-size, and read the text.  Spot.  On.

The Point photo The Point.jpg

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Some Days...

...I wonder why I left the air-conditioned comfort of my beige cloth-covered box in the Consulting Engineering Corporation building.

Oh yeah, meetings & reports.  That was it.

They're starting to look more attractive....