Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Josiah's Birthday Party

Instead of being in Washington DC at the big rally, I had to take Linda Lou to our Grandon Josiah' birthday party. It was held at one of the MickeyD's Virus Palaces, otherwise known as a playland. I think it would have been quieter at the big shindig with Beck, Palin, etc. Just as a matter of curiosity, is it real smart to hold a big outdoor event in DC in late August? Shouldn't events like this be in , oh I dunno, Idaho in August and DC in mid April?

Anyhow, we got in the car and drove to the McD, only to discover that, after unloading Linda Lou and her walker, we were in the wrong one. Sigh. Thirty years ago I could have read that tiny sign. Of course, thirty years ago, no grandkids. So, we got back in the car and then finally drove to the right Bacteria Farm and there they were, five of ours and their friends.

The trouble with not being liberals is there aren't four, six or ten grandparents , two now adult kids and one grandchild. That is, of course, why we will eventually beat the left and why they are trying so hard to take over education, they don't have kids much so they try to steal ours. Anyway, there were about forty-one thousand kids between the ages of months old to tweens, none using "their indoor voices". MickeyD's Plague Palaces have no soundproofing.

I find it strange that only a few of the adults took refuge, temporarily in the main part of the place. I had to. Oddly, as deaf as I am, noise bothers me more than it did. Oh well, I shall not ponder the strange things that come with getting old. Otherwise I might start thinking about the things that should be limber are now stiff and vice versa. Sigh.

Anyhow, I would duck in for as long as I could stand it, taking pictures, and then retreat to a table in the "adult section", which is not the same as the adult section in a seedy bookstore in the tough part of town. Then, when the sound shockwaves slowed to a jangle I would take a deep breath, say a short prayer and head back into Germ Garden. This was much like when I was in the Service, every time I did something worth a big medal, no one was looking. I will say that every time I looked, Josiah was surrounded by girls. Well, he should be. Anyhow, here are the pictures. We might not have outnumbered the Beck confab, we did out noise them.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

General Quarters, General Quarters! This Is No Drill! All Hands Man Your Battle Stations!

The Obama Administration seems to be totally suicidal. The EPA is now considering banning lead ammunition. Even dumber, they have opened comments on the scheme, comments closing on October 31. The election being November the second. Way to bring us bitter clingers to the polls!

I am trying to link the story Here. Lets see if this works. Ha! Seems like it did. My blog-fu is improving!

Anyhow, you should follow the directions and send a nice little note to the EPA on this. You should also call or write your Representative in Congress, plus both Senators.

Oddly I have read that when Congress allowed the EPA to lord it over lead, they specifically exempted ammunition, mainly for fear the military would end up on the short end, also because they remember '94, after the "assault weapons" ban. What, are you silly enough to think that it was all Newt and the Contract?

Okay, I understand that the upper ranks of this Administration (or is it a regime?) have little or no practical experience. Still, you would think that someone there would like a tiny bit of help from Congress. As the word trickles out about this jackass move, everyone ready to give up on Republicans will be enraged and energized. Does anyone in this regime know that when you go bear hunting you do not cover yourself in lard, fish and berries and then arm yourself only with a thin willow switch? Peabrains. Worse. Brains rattling around in their heads like a BB in a boxcar. Oh, and BBs have lead cores. Actually BB shot is usually all lead. For some strange reason, the BBs used in BB guns is slightly bigger than the size of BB shot for shotguns. I never really understood that. The only reason I can think of for that is so a proud owner of a Red Ryder BB gun can't buy a 25 pound bag of shot and be in business for a year or so. But, I digress.

And these people claim to be smart. Lord help me. Obama, if you don't pee on this fire right now, you can just "Say Good Night, Gracie".

It is up to us, the bitter clingers, to put a stop to this nonsense.

Update, 3:10 AM 8/29/10:
Between the time I wrote the above and the time I got home from the midnight "birthday meeting" of the AA group where I sobered up all those years ago, the EPA says that it has rejected banning lead ammunition. Okay, good. We still need to keep an eye on 'em, though. I'll post something soon about the birthday meeting and my grandson Josiah's fourth birthday party soon.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Happy "Birthday" To Me.

It was 1985 when I woke up to my very last hangover (so far, anyway). I have been sober now for twenty-five years. I by no means did this alone. Without the loving help of a gracious and forgiving God I would never had a chance, and that is just the beginning. Although He is the most important.

My family, too was very important, I doubt I'd even be alive, much less sober and fairly happy, without my Linda Lou. The added "family" from AA was the last thing that made the difference.

The wonderful thing about AA is that almost never did an alcoholic recover from drunkenness before Bill W. and Dr. Bob sobered up in 1935 and wrote down what they did. That, I believe, is the key to AA's success. Before AA it was always some smart person looking down his nose at a drunk and saying "this is what you should do". Much like those idiots in Washington, DC, most of whom have never run a hot dog stand, trying to run American business from afar. We see how this is working. How about that Recovery Summer, Barry?

Bill W. and Dr. Bob did not do that. They sobered up. Then they wrote down what they did. In a way it's kind of depressing to stand in front of an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting and look out over the group. Experience has shown that more than half of the people will die as wet drunks. Those who do not recover are the ones too smart to follow directions.And it's really that simple. Those willing to follow some simple (not easy, simple) directions are the ones who recover.

I believe that it also takes a certain amount of stubbornness. We alcoholics say that, in order to recover, one must "hit bottom", have one's life get so awful that one is willing to make the effort to change. This is why trust fund kids and actors and famous athletes are so often train wrecks. A lot of money can insulate one from the damage. Anyhow, once one has hit bottom and started the recovery process it takes a peculiar combination of willingness to follow directions and enough stubbornness to keep on when things get hard. It also take the knowledge that there is always another bottom, always lower and worse than the one before.

I do not know that if anyone new in sobriety will ever read this. If one does I have a special message. Try to remember the pain. To recover I need to remember that pain and live with the knowledge that I don't ever have to feel that way again. That is one of the main reasons we keep going to meeting once we have a year or so sober, by the way. Humans are hard wired to forget our own pain. I usually prove this by noting all the women out there with two or more babies. Going to meetings, though, and seeing the newcomers struggling with trying to get, and stay, sober reminds us of our own pain.

Yes, the bad news is that half will fail. The good news, half will win. Todauy I am a winner. It's my twenty-fifth "birthday" Too bad my knees and back (and a few other parts which I shall not name.You're welcome.) do not believe I'm twenty-five.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Just Crazy Talk

Well I see that the news is not about the economy sinking like a lead canoe, nor is it about Congress looking like it will swing hard right after the election. It's not even about The President's polls reaching, in less than two years, numbers that look like what it took the media seven years to give George Bush.

No, the big news is that some one fifth to one quarter of the population thinks Barack Hussein Obama is Muslim.

Naturally, the media types say that this makes the population stupid. Sure. I mean, someone who called himself Barry until after college now calls himself Barack. Sure the guy had a Muslim father and, according to the rules of Islam, that makes him one too. Silly things like when he was in that school in Indonesia, the paperwork had him as a Muslim and that his stepfather was Muslim, why should anyone think any of that makes him a Muslim. That's just crazy talk.

Next some percentage of the population might think that someone named Francis Terrence O'Callahan might be Catholic. Just crazy talk.

In other odd news the New York Times had this editorial out about Tom DeLay finally being cleared of all federal charges. In it they comment that he was only cleared because lawmakers had not made his actions illegal. Well, duh. That has got to be one of the silliest thing I've ever seen. Well, yeah, NYT, and the only reason it's legal for you numb skulls to breathe air is the lawmakers haven't made it illegal for you to do so. No, New York Times, the reason DeLay has been cleared of federal charges is that he followed the laws as they were written. If the laws had been written differently he would have followed them as they were written then. Now they have not yet made it illegal to be a Republican, as much as the NYT would like that. Idiots.

I've been remiss in posting lately, I've been doing a little extra reading. In addition to my "regular" reading and the internet reading, I have just got a CD ROM from Handloader Magazine called The Art of Bullet Casting. This six hundred page tome on a CD-ROM is keeping me busy. I swear, though, some of it carries less knowledge than Joe Schmoe the handloader. Oh well, I am learning something, even though much of the "book" is about loading for cartridges I will never own, nor have I any interest in owning, even if I won the lottery. I doubt I'll win the lottery, too, considering that I don't buy tickets.

Anyhow, I'm around, just busy.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Barnaby Jones Pickles, RIP

I got online and, in addition to the current Washington regime trying to wreck the whole country I discovered heartbreak in the Texas Hill Country. Jenny the Bloggess lost her Pug, Barnaby Jones.

I doubt that Jenny and her lovely daughter Hailey has ever heard of me. I only hope that when Barnaby got to The Bridge that Captain Fatbob, The Black Pug of Doom and Ming the Merciless, our grumpy old lady Pug were there to greet him and show him where the special stash of treats is.

I hope that Jenny and her husband, Victor take their Hailey and get another dog soon. Yes, losing a dog is heartbreaking. I know. Yet, not having that little (or sometimes not so little) four footed bundle of absolute love and devotion is even more heartbreaking.

Goodbye, Barnaby Jones Pickles. I never met you in this life but, when I go I'll have a big bag of treats with me. Keep an eye on my dogs and follow them, I'll have a little something for you, too.

I see that, as usual, my Blog-fu is not good enough to link to that post. Just type in The Bloggess and you'll get there.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Build The Fence.

A couple of years back I put up a fence around my back yard. It was only a minor fence, able to keep our German shepherd dog in the back yard. Still, it was one day to dig the important holes and pour concrete around those posts, then another day to put up the other posts and stretch the goat wire. Viola! The fence was built. At no cost to the taxpayer. Well, the taxpayer provided my pension, which paid for the fence but, the pension would have come, anyhow.

Meanwhile, they just passed another six hundred million dollar border bill up there in Washington, on top of all the billions spent so far. and they still cannot build the fence. This bill is going to pay for some new Border Patrol agents and some drones. One would think they have enough drones in government.

I would like to take a look at the houses of all these Congresscritters. I would suspect that pretty much all of them have a durned fence. Yet they can't seem to manage a fence across our border.

Now I realize that there is somewhat more to a fence along the whole southern border (we'll get to the northern border next) is somewhat of a bigger deal than the fence that keeps Cochise Apache Princess from running out and getting shot or run over. Still, I built the fence according to my needs.

So, why can't this government, with it's trillion dollar deficits, build a big ol' fence? Every day some bunch of government types are prancing around telling us how smart they are, yet they cannot build a fence.

How about this election cycle we simply require everyone running for a federal post to declare whether or not they would commit to a fence along the border, to be completely finished by 2013. Then anti-tunneling by 2015. Then start on the northern border. This, because the border is longer, plus problems like snow, ice and mountains would take somewhat longer. Not to mention the Great Lakes. Still, almost every homeowner in the country has a fence. Seems like if we can do it, why can't the Federal Government.

Shouldn't we insist on a fence before we are willing to even discuss any kind of immigration reform? Isn't it time we put our foot down and insist that government listen to us?

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Why I Am A Sort Of Birther

Every few days I still see a little blurb somewhere saying how much better we all, especially conservatives, would be if no one was a "birther". The sophisticated view is that only those with an IQ under 80 or so would like to see the un-redacted, complete birth certificate of Barry Obama.

Sorry, the birth certificate is only part of it. I wanted to know during the election, and still want to know, a whole lot about this man that is a secret. The man spent a whole slew of money in court getting judges to say we had no right to see this birth certificate. Why? My certified copy cost twenty dollars, I needed it when, a few decades ago, I lost my wallet. I had to get a new drivers license and for some reason I couldn't find my original BC. So, why did the man spend so much money to avoid showing a twenty dollar document? Next question: Whose money was it?

For that matter, should a person have to prove his qualifications for the job? Much was made of the "gentleman's C" grades that Bush got, mostly by people trying to say that Gore and Kerry are smart, yet Bush showed his transcripts. Why did Obama refuse?

How did Obama get to "Pockistan" at a time when the State Dept. had a travel advisory against Americans going there? How did he pay for the trip at a time when, according to his "autobiography" he could not afford a cab ride?

There are several other questions of this sort. The most important question is how, almost two years after the election, do we not have the answers to these. The New York times manages to publish top secret national security information but they can't even find out who paid for Obama's trip to Pakistan? No wonder the media is going broke.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Consent Of The Governed?

I believe we are heading for a real fight in the next few years. Our whole government and Constitution rest on the consent of the governed. In the short run, governing without the consent of a large number of the US population will lead to rapid changes in which political party has the majority on Congress and the Presidency.

Trouble is, neither Party seems to care about governing from the middle. George W. was close, if he had been satisfied to knock the Taliban out of the government of Afghanistan and had set the military loose to kill every single one of the clowns slipping over the borders in Iraq, with a stern warning to Damascus, Riyadh and Tehran that they would get some ugly results, care of the US Air Force, Navy and the redlegs of the artillery, repeated as necessary. He would have also had to remember the borders.

Bill Clinton, though hard left to his shrivelled black soul, governed more to the center once the Republicans took Congress although the Donks did everything they could to deny the voters their victory. Then, of course, the Republicans themselves did their very best to deny the voters their victory, governing not as center conservatives but as Democrat Lite. Meanwhile the Democrats do not govern as center left but as wild-eyed Bolsheviks.

So, neither Party in Washington is paying much attention to the voters, no matter the huge throngs at TEA Party events, nor minor details like that election in Missouri where the voters went against Obamacare by a 70-30 margin.

This, of course, does not mention the Me-chelle O trip to Spain with how many of her closest friends, along with enough Secret Service Agents to take down a rifle company. This is, what, her sixth vacation this summer? Democrats of course tell us all that as a private citizen Me-chelle can go anywhere she wants. Okay, fine. So, if she is a private citizen, let her pay for the Air Force jet and Secret Service. Oh, Peter, that's different. Well, no. Either she is a private citizen or a federal official. Now, Laura Bush had a staff of one. To Me-chelle's 21. This is an inbalance. If she is a private citizen, how come such a big staff? And who pays for this staff? Laura went on a number of state trips with her husband. You remember Laura's husband, the guy that gave up golf during the war. The guy the Democrats screeched about his many vacations to Crawford, Texas. Has anyone heard one word from a Democrat leader about this little jaunt? To a foreign country during a huge recession? Did they ever shut up during the Bush terms?

The Washington establishment didn't seem to notice that a Federal Judge could not find it constitutional for the Congress to demand that people buy a particular kind of health insurance. This is especially odd considering all the "rights" that Federal Judges have found, when there is no mention at all of these "rights" anywhere in the founding documents.

It would be really nice if our law schools would require a few simple reading comprehension classes to be a prerequisite to enter. This class could focus on a few simple phrases like "Congress shall make no law..." I can see it now, the pop quiz and the arguments over exactly how many laws are "no law". They could have other interesting phrases like "shall not be infringed".

Of course, if you want to see heads explode in the pre-law classes, try "The powers not delegated to to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to to the States, respectively, or to the people." Now, a person of medium-low intelligence, or better, would on reading this, know that this means that Congress and the Federal Courts, not to mention the Executive, should butt out.

This means, of course that the Feds have no right to come up with the Defense of Marriage Act. It also means that that Federal Judge out in California has no right to butt into the California initiative on gay and lesbian marriage. It seems that gay marriage is one of those emanations of a penumbra that only lawyers can find when reading the plain and simple English of the late 18th Century.

Now I have heard some pretty fair arguments on both sides of the gay marriage issue. What I haven't seen is where it's the business of the Federal Bench. What I do see is that since marriage is not mentioned in the Constitution at all, it's one of those issues left to the people or to the States, respectively.

What would work is if the States would arrest and try Federal officials for overstepping their bounds. I know that the unpleasantness of 1932-2010 told people, wrongly, that the people and the States have no power over the Feds.

It also occurs to me that if we reintroduced dueling by sword and pistol for lying about a politician, or for that matter, a voter, we would go a long way toward a restoration of government by the people. Seems simpler than pitchforks and torches.

Another idea: Any politician who breaks a promise made during his or her term is subject to a binding recall vote within sixty days. Then we wouldn't be messing with those "95% of you will not see your taxes raised one dime" business. True, election seasons would be a little more boring but, they'd be a lot more careful with those promises. And, if there was some kind of emergency where a promise had to be broken, we'd have the recall election where the Pol could explain. If there were a good enough reason, the majority of the voters would understand.

I wonder how different my late teens would have been with no "Ah weel nevah send Murken boahs to do the job that Asian boahs should do" from LBJ. Remember the election of '64? "And we ah at peace" And we weel stay at peace" Meanwhile, painting Goldwater as a warmonger. Now, y'all forgive me for being a poor lowly enlisted man during that time but from the promise of peace to the first landing at Da Nang was about five months, total. The election of '64 to the first landings at Chu Lai was six months. Now I am no great military strategist. Still, no one can ever convince me that we could have two seaborne invasions in six months, starting from plans for peace. It just takes too long to gather all that gear and all those men.

This is another thing that bothers me. Congress, since December eighth, 1941 has not actually declared war. Instead they keep "authorizing the use of military force". Then they start screeching that there hasn't been a declaration of war. Pardon me for bein' a pore dumb redneck but when the United States government sent be halfway around the world, made me wear funny clothes and carry a gun while people I'd never even met were trying their best to kill me, that was a war.

Can we please have a rule, something like the War Powers Act that requires Congress to agree to a certain wording where we either use the military to go in and kick ass and chew bubble gum or come home. Oh, and they're all out of bubble gum. Sixty day from the first boot on the ground is plenty of time to decide if what we are doing is worth the lives and health of our young men and women. If it isn't worth it, come home. If it is, then fight. Is that to much to ask of our politicians? Can we please stop with the using our young men and women to prove how tough a politician is? We have a whole slew of pols who voted for whatever it is we're doing. About a week later they started crying about how we shouldn't be there. New rules: Rule one. A binding vote on whether or not our troops should be in action. Rule two. Once they are in action, fight to win. Rule three. No crying if the enemies are hurt or killed. If you politicians don't want the bad guys killed, don't send the military. Send politicians. Rule four. Try to remember that those men and women in a combat zone are there because you sent them. Pretend that you are on their side.