Sunday, January 25, 2009
On Tom Gresham's Gun Talk radio show last week, as I recall, he spoke the praises of the Springfield XD design as opposed to the Glock design because Gaston Glock's pistol is essentially unchanged from when it was introduced and it's dated. I find it curious that he would knock the Glock design when he often pays homage to a gun whose design is far older--the 1911. Granted, the 1911 is a good design, but let's not disparage the Glock because it is a little older than the latest wonder-thang without acknowledging how long in the tooth (98 years and counting) the too-often-worshipped 1911 is.
More proof that fashion designers are inbred, quite likely for several generations back.
A model wears a creation by British fashion designer John Galliano as part of his men's Fall-Winter 2009/2010 collection, in Paris, Friday, Jan. 23, 2009.
Yup, just what we need, more gender-bending, not to mention sloppy-looking, apparel.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Ah, the SHOT (Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade) show, the outdoor industry's annual festival of dubious innovation and massive marketing. The acronym SHOT would be better described as Splitting Hairs On Things, for there are rarely any totally new and fresh ideas, at least gun-wise, that come out of the event. But, hey, it gives gun folk a good excuse to get together, rub elbows, fawn over all of the glittery new objects without questioning their utility, and shoot the breeze. Plus, it keeps all of those marketers, not to mention gun writers, who push essentially unnecessary products, employed.
P.S. Note to Ruger: Guys, you really could have had something with that new little snubby of yours, the LCR, had you made it a six shooter (and I'm not the first to say that). While I appreciate your efforts, once the SHOT show is over get back to the drawing boards and come up with a six-shot model, pronto, before Smith does. Oh, and fire whoever okayed this gun to come out with a five-shot capacity.
Monday, January 12, 2009
Yup, JUST what we needed here in Colorado:
Go East, young man? Californians look for the exit
By MICHAEL R. BLOOD, AP Writer
LOS ANGELES – Mike Reilly spent his lifetime chasing the California dream. This year he's going to look for it in Colorado.
With a house purchase near Denver in the works, the 38-year-old engineering contractor plans to move his family 1,200 miles away from his home state's lemon groves, sunshine and beaches. For him, years of rising taxes, dead-end schools, unchecked illegal immigration and clogged traffic have robbed the Golden State of its allure.
Why are so many looking for an exit?
Among other things: California's unemployment rate hit 8.4 percent in November, the third-highest in the nation, and it is expected to get worse. A record 236,000 foreclosures are projected for 2008, more than the prior nine years combined, according to research firm MDA DataQuick. Personal income was about flat last year.
"We've lived off the investments our parents made in the '50s and '60s for a long time," says Tim Hodson, director of the Center for California Studies at California State University, Sacramento. "We're somewhat in the position of a Rust Belt state in the 1970s."
Financial adviser Barry Hartz lived in California for 60 years and once ran for state Assembly before relocating with his wife last year to Colorado Springs, Colo.[!!!], where his son's family had moved.
As long as these dudes leave their scummy California politics behind, hey, they're welcome here in Colorado.
But I know they won't. How? I've seen the influx of Cali birds into Colorado for the last 15+ years and I've watched how they have nudged Colorado a little more to the left each election cycle. One example that springs to mind is the closing of the "gun show loophole." I'd bet bodyparts that that would never have gotten any traction prior to the migration of Golden Staters.
They say that as California goes, so goes the nation. I don't know about the nation, although I suspect that it's true, but I can testify to the fact that renegade Californians have changed the tenor of Colorado politics and individual liberty here, and not for the better.
P.S. I know at least one person who reads this blog lives in California, but he is quite libertarian in his politics from what I've read on his blog, so the above rant doesn't apply to him.
Saturday, January 10, 2009
In another installment of this series (I have no idea if there'll be any more parts or not), I have decided to address the best choice for those who both want to keep things simple and who don't want to pay an exorbitant price for a semi-automatic centerfire rifle in military-like configuration, also mistakenly known as an "assault" rifle. (True assault rifles have the ability to switch between semi-auto and full-auto fire at the flick of a lever.)
As you can tell from the photo, I've chosen a lever-action rifle. Specifically, I've chosen the Marlin 1894C carbine in .38 Special/.357 Magnum. With its 18.5" barrel, it handles easily and really steps up the performance of both the .38 and the .357. Except for extremely rare scenarios, it will do as good a job as a high-dollar "assault" rifle in the hands of a competent operator. Besides that, it's a whole lot of fun to shoot.
Does this mean I am against the "assault" rifle? Heck no! If a person wants one, or a dozen or more, more power to him. Nor does my endorsement of the 1894C mean I think it is the equivalent of an "assault" rifle, for they are two different bullet-launching platforms. I'm speaking merely from a price/simplicity (it has its own internal magazine) standpoint.
As far as performance, I can remember chronographing some factory 158-grain JSP .357 Mag. ammo and getting several hundred more FPS than I got with the same load in a revolver. With my softball .38 Spl. handloads I was able to get nearly 200 FPS more than out of a revolver. Plus, the accuracy was excellent at the range I usually shoot this rifle, 25 yards (yeah, I know accuracy should be good at that short of a range; when the weather warms, I'll have to try it at 50 and 100 yards, but I have little doubt it will perform well at those ranges too).
One concern/complaint I've heard about using lever-action rifles for self-defense is, especially with a true rifle cartridge such as the .30-30, that they tend to heat up quickly and they aren't robust enough for long strings of fire, which is no doubt the truth. But the 1894C is chambered for a pistol cartridge, and I've fired several dozen .38 Spl. rounds in quick succession without any problem. Besides, how many rounds are you likely to need in the average (outliers be damned) self-defense situation?
If you're intent on getting an "assault"-like rifle, by all means, get one. If, however, you are balking at the prices they are going for these days, or you just want a simple, dependable repeating rifle that will serve you well, within its particualar limitations, of course, take a close look at a lever-action rifle chambered in a pistol caliber, especially if that caliber is .38 Special/.357 Magnum.
HOUSTON – A Texas death row inmate with a history of mental problems pulled out his only good eye and told authorities he ate it. Andre Thomas, 25, was arrested for the fatal stabbings of his estranged wife, their young son and her 13-month-old daughter in March 2004. Their hearts also had been ripped out. He was convicted and condemned for the infant's death.
While in the Grayson County Jail in Sherman, Thomas plucked out his right eye before his trial later in 2004. A judge subsequently ruled he was competent to stand trial.
A death-row officer at the Polunsky Unit of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice found Thomas in his cell with blood on his face and took him to the infirmary.
"Thomas said he pulled out his eye and subsequently ingested it," agency spokesman Jason Clark said Friday.
Thomas was treated at East Texas Medical Center in Tyler after the Dec. 9 incident. Then he was transferred and remains at the Jester Unit, a prison psychiatric facility near Richmond southwest of Houston.
"He will finally be able to receive the mental health care that we had wanted and begged for from day 1," Bobbie Peterson-Cate, Thomas' trial attorney, told the Sherman Herald Democrat. "He is insane and mentally ill. It is exactly the same reason he pulled out the last one."
At his trial, defense lawyers also argued he suffered from alcohol and drug abuse.
Thomas does not have an execution date.
The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals in October upheld his conviction and death sentence for the death of 13-month-old Leyha Marie Hughes. Also killed March 27, 2004, were his wife, Laura Christine Boren, 20, and their son, 4-year-old Andre Lee.
Thomas, from Texoma, walked into the Sherman Police Department and told a dispatcher he had just murdered the three and had stabbed himself in the chest.
Thomas told police how he put his victims' hearts in his pocket and left their apartment, took them home, put them in a plastic bag and threw them in the trash.
Court documents described the three victims as having "large, gaping wounds to their chests."
Yeah, I'd say he definitely fits the definition of insane.
Sunday, January 4, 2009
Aside from the fact that he's a world-class puke, this guy is also a monumental cheapskate.
Cops: Dad ordered to pay child support kills son
NEW ORLEANS – A man who initially told police gunmen kidnapped his 2 1/2-year-old son was arrested Saturday, accused of committing an "extremely hideous" murder because he was ordered to pay child support, Police Superintendent Warren Riley said.
Danny Platt confessed, told police where to find the child's body and will be booked on a charge of first-degree murder in the death of Ja' Shawn Powell, Riley said at a news conference.
"He had said he would kill either his wife or his child before he paid child support," which he recently had been ordered to do, Riley said.
Riley said he did not know the amount of child support and would not describe how the boy was killed, saying the coroner would do that after the autopsy was complete. The coroner's spokesman did not immediately return a call.
"The mother is in a safe place," Riley said.
Although he had visiting rights, Platt, 22, of New Orleans, had never visited the boy until he picked him up Friday, Riley said. [Emphasis mine. Hmmm, this didn't trip anyone's red flag?]
Police put out a notice Saturday asking people to look for the boy and saying his father had told them three men with dreadlocks and AK-47 rifles had piled out of an SUV and kidnapped Ja' Shawn shortly before midnight Friday.
"His story never really added up," Riley said. "He was a suspect from the very beginning."
Riley said Platt eventually confessed and told officers where to find the body.
Police spokesman officer Janssen Valencia said he did not know if Platt has an attorney.
Platt had only a couple of "very minor" previous arrests, Riley said.
"How does an individual — because he's ordered to pay child support to take care of a kid ... believe that this is so much pressure that he would face — he would do this hideous act to his own child, or to any child, and think that is a remedy to paying child support?" Riley said. "I mean there are some sick individuals in this society, and this gentleman is clearly one."
Fitting punishment for this slob would be for the state to lock him up in an unheated/uncooled cell and not spend one red cent on him thereafter, not even for food. Let him slowly starve to death while he thinks about all of the money he saved on not taking care of his own child.
Of course, this won't happen, and it probably shouldn't, but it's nice to dream, isn't it? No, more than likely he'll get some type of life sentence so he can go to the pokey, pump iron, talk crap, rape and get raped, etc. for the rest of his days. Well, I guess that's at least some form of justice.
Saturday, January 3, 2009
Yeah, I know you didn't ask the question, "If I could get by with only ONE handgun, which should it be?" But, being the prescient, not to mention nice, guy I am, I knew you were thinking of asking it, so here's your answer:
The Ruger SP101 in .357 Mag. (but shoot mostly .38 Special in it) with a 2 1/4" barrel, although the 3 1/16" barrel would work also.
That's it. That's all I am going to say about this gun. You can do a search on the 'Net to find out why it's a such a good choice for the average Joe/Jo.
Incidentally, you're welcome.
Friday, January 2, 2009
It seems the average person just can't win:
Motorists' habits spur call for tax increases
WASHINGTON – Motorists are driving less and buying less gasoline, which means fuel taxes aren't raising enough money to keep pace with the cost of road, bridge and transit programs.
A federal commission created by Congress to find a way to make up the growing revenue shortfall in the program that funds highway repairs and construction is talking about increasing federal gas and diesel taxes.
A roughly 50 percent increase in gasoline and diesel fuel taxes is being urged by the commission until the government devises another way for motorists to pay for using public roads.
The 15-member National Commission on Surface Transportation Infrastructure Financing is the second group in a year to call for increasing the current 18.4 cents a gallon federal tax on gasoline and the 24.4 cents a gallon tax on diesel. State fuel taxes vary from state to state.
Of course, this couldn't come at a better time, with the economy in a recession and being stalked by a depression that will pounce should it have a couple of wrong moves foisted upon it (like increasing taxes). Yup, more taxes in tough economic times is definitely the way to go. God forbid that services should ever be cut back to match revenues, that might give the impression that government is not, after all, omniscient and omnipotent, and we can't have that.
Actually, I wouldn't be against this tax if it is really needed to repair rotting infrastructure and, now here's the BIG IF, every penny collected would go towards its intended purpose; I believe those who drive, as opposed to those who walk as their main means of conveyance, should have to pay for the upkeep of the roads. But, having lived and learned enough about the U.S. government and the amnesia a fresh batch of money induces in it, I know this will not happen. A few token, pork barrel projects will get the green light but the overall system will continue to deteriorate and the money will somehow mysteriously vanish into black-hole government coffers.
One thing I wonder about, though, is why did this suddenly dawn upon the powers that be? The infrastructure rot they're talking about doesn't happen overnight. Why wasn't the upkeep maintained when the country was awash in illusionary wealth and guzzling gas like there was no tomorrow? Perhaps because the difference between the money collected and the pittance spent on maintenance was so vast? But with just a little more cash, the PTB assure us, things are going to be hunky dory. That's the same old song politicians and bureaucrats having been whistling for generations. They keep doing it, unfortunately, because it works. It's no wonder they have no respect for the electorate.
Thursday, January 1, 2009
In a nod to the dumbest excuse for a holiday ever invented, happy New Year 2009. Why do I say it's a dumb holiday? It's nothing more than the changing of the calendar, the marching of time; why celebrate that? People who get all misty and nostalgic about it are either too young or naive to understand how much they've been brainwashed into believing it is some momentous occasion. It's just the first day of the year, that's it, get over it.
By the way, if it's predictions you're looking for, I found this site to contain a good bunch of financial-based prophecies I happen to believe hold water. It's not uplifting stuff, but the most entertaining predictions rarely are.