Unintended consequences

I stumbled across this today:

China is currently developing a new plane that is modeled after stolen plans for the U.S.’ F-35 fifth-generation plane.

My first thought was “that’s great…trying to copy that disaster could set their defense industry back by decades.” Which is pretty much what it’s done to us.

The “Slippery Slope” argument is just paranoia

There is no such thing as the “slippery slope”. Thinking that leftists with an agenda will never be satisfied with taking “yes” for an answer is simply paranoia.

I mean, take gay “marriage” for example. It’s plainly clear that the left will be perfectly satisfied and will stop harping on us now that they’ve gotten their way on gay “marriage”. There’s no way that they’ll continue to press and insist that a “right to gay marriage” trumps religious freedom. There’s no possible way that they’d ever advocate punishing religious organizations that insist on maintaining their religious freedom and standards.


The same argument can and should be applied to gay marriage. If your organization does not support the right of gay men and women to marry, then the government should be very clear that you’re in the wrong. And it should certainly not bend over backwards to give you the privilege of tax exemption.

We have religious freedom in this country, and any religious organization is entirely free to espouse whatever crazy views it likes. But when those views are fanatical and hurtful, they come into conflict with the views of any honorable legislator who believes in freedom and equality. And at that point, it makes perfect sense for our elected representatives to register their disapproval by abolishing the tax exemption for organizations who cling to narrow-minded and anachronistic views.

Care to wager whether the left will be satisfied and stop demanding more after tax exemptions for Christian churches are removed?

Nah…there’s no slippery slope.

Some animals are more equal than others…

Stab and kill a police dog, get up to 7 years in prison.

“I lost my partner from this. He was also a family member,” said Pittsburgh police Officer Phil Lerza.

But if they decide they need to kick your door down because some drug addled gang banger told them you were growing drugs in your garage, the first thing they do is shoot your family pets.

Because, as Orwell explained so eloquently…some animals are more equal than others.

And the Winner is (3)…

No one.

No guesses at all on the last one, which is really not that surprising to me. It’s not exactly a big tourist spot for Americans.

I was in Victoria BC

The first two pictures are of the legislature building. The third was the Empress Hotel.

If you didn’t get that one, you probably won’t get the next one either.

Hint: it was in the same province in Canada, but is less well known than Victoria.

Motorcycle Trip 4

1 HPIM4966As the last leg of our trip, we left the Black Hills and took the scenic route to the Badlands.

DSC01016After visiting, I can see now why they’re called the badlands.

IMG_1716Could you imagine driving a wagon train and coming up to this? “OK…Now What?”

20140730_153418It really is beautiful, but trying to travel it back before paved roads had to have been a nightmare…especially considering that it’s basically a desert. The badlands only averages 16 inches of precipitation a year…which includes snow in the winter.

360 panoramaAt the highest point we found in the park, I climbed a little hill to the tallest spot I could find, then I used the panorama feature on my tablet to take three panorama shots, then used a piece of software called “photostitch” to piece them together. I’m pretty happy with the resulting 360 degree panoramic view of Badlands National Park (definitely click this one to make it bigger).

IMG_1724After leaving the badlands, we headed back toward Brother’s house in Omaha. We didn’t make it the whole way and stopped in a little one horse town near the Nebraska border. Across the street from the hotel was a gas station with this interesting piece of art named “scrappy”. If you can’t tell from the picture, it is completely made of scrap metal. Very creative.

The next day we completed the trip to Omaha where we dropped off Brother, then back to Indiana where I took leave of Uncle and Cousin, and then I made the final leg of the trip back home to Virginia.

Screen shot 2014-08-16 at 10.39.31 AMHere’s a map of our basic trip path (without all the side trips and sightseeing routes)

IMG_1728And here’s my final mileage.

5,126 miles total.

It was a good trip. I hope you enjoyed sharing it with me.

I finally figured out what I did wrong

Yes, I know it’s been a loooong time, but reading an article this morning really rang my bells and I had to break the hiatus for this.

Here’s the backstory: I spent a year in The Naval Police while on board the USS Enterprise. I started out on patrol, was promoted to Patrol Supervisor, then went into investigations. I did well in all phases, but didn’t really enjoy the patrol part. I didn’t really enjoy the job until I got into investigations…and I was good at it. Good enough that the Security Officer was willing to send me to Navy Investigator School (very unusual for someone who’s actual job specialty was not Master At Arms (What Navy Cops are called)) if I’d volunteer to do another three years on board the Enterprise. I wasn’t willing to make that sacrifice (the Enterprise was, at the time, not a pleasant environment to work in).

At any rate, after I retired from the Navy, I considered becoming a cop. I figured I could endure patrol for a few years and work on being advanced to detective, where I could really thrive in the job.

So, I applied with the Virginia Beach Police Department. I did fine with the process up to a psychological test where you sit in front of a television monitor playing a video of actors portraying scenarios. The candidate is filmed reacting to the scenarios as if he were actually there as a Police Officer and the film of the candidate is evaluated by experienced officers to determine if the candidate has the right psychological makeup to become a cop.

I failed this test and was not advanced. I’ve since been told that it’s very common to fail this test because it’s so subjective and that many candidates have to try more than once before they pass it.

Anyway, after reading this story this morning, I think I finally know why I failed the test.

You see, one of the scenarios presented was of an obviously mentally ill guy armed with a knife in city hall trying to lay claim to the city for some alien civilization that was due to arrive in their spaceships at any time.

I’m pretty sure that this is the scenario that caused me to fail the test, because I didn’t follow standard Police protocol.

I tried to reason with the crazy guy, reassure him that we were there to help him and convince him to put down his weapon so we can work all this out and verify his possibly legitimate claims.

Apparently, I should have just shot him down where he stood. That seems to be the proper Police procedure when dealing with a crazy dude waving a knife around.

I’m often glad that I didn’t make the cut. Between the requirement to shoot crazy people, and the standard procedure of killing family pets while serving search warrants, I really don’t think I’m nearly authoritarian and heartless enough to be an effective cop these days.

We interrupt this blogging hiatus…

To bring breaking news:

For all of those living in the frozen tundra (yes, I’m talking to you Vanilla…and CB too), I just wanted to gloat a little.

todayHere’s what it’s like right now here in Southeastern Virginia:

Unfortunately, it’s going to be pretty short lived.

Here’s the forecast for tomorrow.


Welcome to Virginia. If you don’t like the weather, wait a few minutes, it’ll change.

The Voice of the Rockets

My Son has been announcing football games for the Lafayette-Winona Rockets football team (the school he teaches at). I went to a game on Saturday. I think he does a great job. He’s got a good voice for it. This was the last game of the playoffs and the Rockets won 26 to 6. First kid’s game I’ve been too since he was playing in the City Leagues years ago. It was fun.

Next stop is the intercity championships on November 7th. I may have to hit that game too.

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The Liberal Mindset

Alternate Title: “Responsibility part deux”

This should be the motto of the Democratic party and liberals in general:

“I was all for Obamacare until I found out I was paying for it”
-Unidentified Anthem Blue Cross Customer, California

From this story (hat tip to Drudge).

Isn’t that just like the left? They’re all for providing for the “less fortunate”…as long as they can force someone else to foot the bill.

As soon as they realize that they are included in the “someone else”…all bets are off.

Riddle me this:

Why come my Navy Federal Visa ATM card works just fine in Germany (over 4000 miles away from the company headquarters), but isn’t recognized by ATMs in Toronto, Canada (less than 500 miles away)?