What’s in a name?

This one made me laugh.

Apparently, an MLB player has been suspended for calling a black player on an opposing team “Jackie”.

Josh Donaldson was suspended by Major League Baseball for one game and received a fine for making “inappropriate comments” following an MLB investigation into Donaldson calling White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson “Jackie,” 

My first thought was “what moron would object to being associated with Jackie Robinson, one of the greatest baseball players in history?”

Then I read further and got to the backstory:

[in] a 2019 Sports Illustrated article…the White Sox star said, “I kind of feel like today’s Jackie Robinson. That’s huge to say. But it’s cool, man, because he changed the game, and I feel like I’m getting to a point where I need to change the game.”

So, in what world does being mocked for making an incredibly boastful (and ridiculous) comparison between yourself and a prominent historic figure result in punishment for the mocker?

If I ever compared myself to someone of that kind of historic significance, I’d expect to be harassed about it for the rest of my life. And if I complained about it, the mockery would get even worse.

But in Anderson’s case, he can play the black privilege card because mocking him for an egotistical statement that he made about himself in a national news outlet must be racist right?

I watch a game every now and again, but I’m not much of an MLB fan and I don’t know many of the players these days, so I appreciate it when some of them remove themselves from consideration for “players I should care about”. It makes it easier to winnow the list down to the ones who are worth it. Not only is Tim Anderson an egotistical blow hard, but he’s also a whiny little [female dog] who can’t take a joke. Scratch him off the list.

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Reaping What they Sow

For decades now “climate scientists” have been making dire predictions, setting timelines and proclaiming that “tipping points” will be reached on some arbitrary date.

Of course those predictions never come to fruition and the tipping point dates keep getting moved back and back and back.

But after being indoctrinated from birth that the end is near, we’re killing the planet and if we don’t change our ways before x date, we’re all doomed, many of the younger generation seem to be convinced that it’s too late.

The problem is, if it’s too late, why bother?

I mean, if we’re past the “tipping point” and the planet is doomed no matter what we do, why give up a life of relative wealth and ease for nothing? Heck, we might was well live it up until the end right?

Which has the climate alarmists exclaiming “oh crap” and desperately trying to wave away the fact that, according to their past predictions, it’s already too late and has been for a long time.

Charles is 27 and lives in California. His quirky TikTok videos about news, history, and politics have earned him more than 150,000 followers.

In the video in question, recorded in October 2021, he decided it was time for a confession.

“I am a climate doomer,” he said. “Since about 2019, I have believed that there’s little to nothing that we can do to actually reverse climate change on a global scale.”

Climate doomism is the idea that we are past the point of being able to do anything at all about global warming – and that mankind is highly likely to become extinct.

That’s wrong, scientists say, but the argument is picking up steam online.

Wait, what? That’s wrong? But you’ve been telling us for decades that we’re going to destroy the earth. NOW you tell us it was wrong?

They thought the doomsaying would be able to convince everyone to basically give up modern society for our own good. It hasn’t happened fast enough or thoroughly enough so now, not only do they have to keep trying to convince “climate deniers” (what a stupid term) to give up everything that has made modern life possible, but now they have to try to convince the gullible kids that they’ve been duping all this time that, contrary to what we’ve been telling you, it’s actually not too late, so you still have to give up everything that has made modern life possible…to SAVE THE WORLD.

It would be funny if it weren’t such a serious topic.

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Astra Zeneca is working on a new drug

This one sounds great. If used promptly it can reduce the damage and restore function of people with spinal cord damage.

Here’s the money quote

They are already prepared to conduct Phase 2 trials, the second stage of the development process, which will take two years to complete, according to Ahmed.

If those are successful, a full Phase 3 trial, the final step in the process, could be started in two years and “if all goes well as we believe it will, this drug could be ready for use by spinal cord injured patients in approximately five years,” he said.

5 years to go from phase 2 to final production…but they expect us to believe that they were able to create a “safe and effective” Chinese Virus vaccine in a couple of months with full confidence and no compromises on testing.

Pull my other leg.

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Blog Backend issues

So, I haven’t posted for a while because I’ve been having issues with the blog backend. Basically, whenever I tried to log into the dashboard, I’d get a weird error message. I simply didn’t have time to mess with it to figure it out so I just left it alone for a while.

I finally got around to trying to figure it out. Luckily the first thing I tried fixed it. I had to manually turn off all the plugins by accessing the database directly and editing the database entry that activated them. Turning them all off allowed me to get to the dashboard so I can now use the normal interface again, which is nice.

Now I’m going back through and reactivating them one by one to see which one was causing the issue. If you notice anything wonky on the blog over the next couple of days, that’s what’s going on.

By the way…one of the plugins I had running was the one that allowed me to create and edit blog posts using the “classic” editor.

Like most technology, over time, the developers of the applications try to “stupid-proof” them by dumbing everything down to the level that anyone can use it. I understand this tendency, they want to make things accessible to people with no technical background to widen their customer base.

The problem is, this “dumbing down” process is very annoying to the people who have the technical chops to do things manually.

When they created the newest blog post editing function, they made it easier for people who don’t speak HTML, but harder for those of use who do, so I used the plugin to continue using the “classic” editor which is less user friendly to the tech-deficient, but I felt gave me more control over the nuts and bolts because I could directly edit the HTML.

Well, in shutting down all the plugins, I had to shut down the classic editor. I’m not a complete luddite so I think I’ll give the new “blocks” editor a chance. It shouldn’t affect the way anything looks on the front end, it just changes the way things look and feel to me on the backend. It may take me a while to get used to it so posting may continue to be slow for a while.

At any rate…that’s what’s going on at the moment.

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Sea Story

Sorry it’s been awhile, I was out of town on a business trip and then I spent most of a week on The Estate getting frustrated with my lack of progress…but that’s not the point of this post.

I read a story the other day about how the USS George Washington has been experiencing a rash of suicides lately.

More than 200 sailors have moved off the USS George Washington aircraft carrier after multiple deaths by suicide among the crew, including three in less than one week in April, according to the Navy.

The GW is in Newport News Naval Shipyard right now undergoing a refit so people may wonder “if they’re not going anywhere, they’re just sitting in port and can go out on the town in the evenings, why are they so stressed out they’re killing themselves?”

I thought it might be enlightening to share a bit of my Naval History.

Through a stroke of pure unluck, I was stationed aboard the USS Enterprise for the end stages of a major yard period at Newport News shipyard. The primary reason for her being in the yards was for a reactor refueling, which on the Enterprise with 8 reactors, was a major undertaking and took several years.

At the point I was on board, the refueling was complete and they were just trying to get the ship back together to get her underway. There had already been several delays and she was late by over a year.

Command of the ship had recently changed and I’m certain that the new CO (Captain Naughton…a name which shall live in infamy – at least in my mind) was under a lot of pressure to get things done. As they say in the military crap rolls downhill so he was passing that pressure on to the department heads, who passed it on to the division officers etc etc etc. The general attitude perfectly matched the old adage “the beatings will continue until morale improves”.

By the time it got down to the worker bees, it was pretty oppressive.

We were working 12 hour shifts 6 days a week (plus watchstanding and duty) and were constantly required to demonstrate that we were making progress. They were threatening to go to 7 days a week if we didn’t show better progress. The carrot was that if we met certain milestones, we could go back to 5 days a week and maybe even to normal 8 hour shifts.

One of the “innovations” being used to save money on the refit was that the ship’s crew were responsible for rehabbing all the personnel spaces…berthings, offices, workspaces and such. That means stripping down to the bare bulkheads, replacing any plumbing, wiring, equipment or hardware that needed replacing, reinsulating, tiling the floor, painting the walls, reinstalling any furniture and fittings (on a Navy ship, bulky furniture isn’t just moved in…it can’t be loose to just roam the decks while in heavy seas…it has to be bolted to the decks and bulkheads (and sometimes overhead).

The biggest problem we were having was in finding supplies. Here’s an example. Our crew was rehabbing one of the crew heads near a berthing space we were also responsible for. Our big hold up at the time was that we couldn’t get the replacement urinals we’d ordered for the head so we were at a standstill and weren’t able to show any progress, which wasn’t sitting well with our superiors. We finally got a supply of the urinals in and started installing them…but at some point at night, some other crew, who apparently were having the same problem we were, came into our head, disconnected and stole several urinals from our space in order to install them in theirs.

Of course, we couldn’t just let stand the fact that not only were we showing no progress, we were moving backward so…we stole urinals from another space being rehabbed. A few days later someone else stole them from us again. And on it went. We were so desperate to show progress that the same equipment was being installed in different spaces over and over and over again.

It wasn’t just urinals, it was most things, but that was the example that I remember most distinctly…probably because they were such a pain in the butt to install and remove, stealing them was no easy task. For some of the smaller items, paint, hardware, etc, people were going out to Lowes and Home Depot and buying the stuff on their own dime because we couldn’t get them from supply in a timely manner.

Another problem was coordination between what the Navy was doing and the shipyard. A space would get finished being rehabbed, and then the shipyard crew would realize “oh, hey, we still need to replace some fittings and piping in the next space over and the only way to get to it is through that space you just rehabbed. tear everything back out again so we can cut the bulkheads out to get to what we need to do”.

The point is, that the crew was working as hard as they could and doing way more work than was necessary because of the ridiculous pressures being put on them from above. It was hugely stressful.

Apparently one of the big differences was that the Enterprise at the time wasn’t in nearly good enough shape for the crew to be staying onboard. There was a big barge that mainly just consisted of barracks-like rooms and a chow hall docked to a pier nearby. It was called the “FAF” (Floating Accommodation Facility) and was where most of the (lower ranking) crew were housed. There were also some apartments out in town that higher ranks got to use.

The GW still had crew onboard. Let me tell you, a ship in the yard is not an environment that anyone wants to be living in. It’s dirty, it’s dangerous and it’s not an…um…restful environment.

I can say from experience that pretty much everyone would rather be at sea than onboard a ship during a yard period. It really and truly sucks.

The fact that sailors are taking their own lives to get out of the situation tells me that the command environment on the GW is probably similar to what I experienced on the Enterprise…or perhaps even worse.

One of the big problems with the modern military is that the “leaders” aren’t promoted due to any leadership ability or military acumen, they’re promoted for being the best politicians. Kissing the right butts, saying the right things, toeing the right lines, etc. The ability to inspire men (and women now) to follow them into battle, the willingness to sacrifice their career (or even the next evaluation cycle) for the well being of their subordinates, the willingness to take a stand for what is morally right even when it’s personally costly to do so…those characteristics are extremely rare (possibly extinct) in the military brass.

So when they are pressured to “get the ship out of the yards now” by the politicians above them because it looks bad if they have to announce (another) delay, their response is to beat the people under them relentlessly to try to get more blood out of that turnip, because they know that if the job doesn’t get done, they may get passed over for promotion until next time and that just won’t do.

The really sad thing is that what ends up happening is the hardest working, most dedicated, most skilled people end up getting beat right out of the Navy. They can be successful anywhere and they know it. Why would they stay in for the abuse when they can get a nice, stable, well-paying job in the civilian sector where they’re actually treated like human beings?

There are times for utmost effort and sacrifice and when those times arrive, members of the military answer the call willingly, selflessly and without hesitation; but solely for the purposes of saving some pampered politician’s reputation and career ain’t it. I strongly suspect that this is the root of the problem on the GW.

And the really sad thing is that it’s unlikely to change any time soon. The beatings will continue until morale improves.

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And then they act surprised

This is the way it always goes.

First the left starts instituting rules against their enemies.

Then they start using those rules against their own.

John Fuller … added that he “full-heartedly” believes that Black people are superior.

Members of the student government who were uncomfortable with Fuller’s comments reported the comments to the Office of Institutional Equity.

And Mr. Fuller will be absolutely SHOCKED that his fellow leftists reported him to the thought police.

They never think their rules will be applied to themselves.

I completely disagree with Mr. Fuller’s comment that “black people are superior” but I unreservedly defend his right to say it.

If people aren’t allowed to say what they really think, how are we supposed to know which ones are racist assholes with whom we do not wish to associate?

By the way, if blacks are inherently superior, why isn’t Africa the economic, political, military and scientific powerhouse of the world?

For the record, I don’t believe that blacks are inherently inferior. I don’t think skin tone has a thing to do with it. Cultural norms are what make a particular group more successful than another. The reason asians are highly successful in academic and scientific pursuits isn’t because of their sallow complexion or uniquely shaped eyes, it’s because their culture places very high emphasis on academic achievement and hard work. The graduation rates of blacks isn’t 15 points lower than whites because of relative melanin levels: it’s because their culture tells them that academic success is “acting white” and makes them a “sellout”.

In my experience, blacks who don’t buy into those fallacies are just as successful as whites and don’t need “affirmative action” policies to give them an artificial advantage to do so. I’ve had a very long and varied work life and I’ve worked with many, many blacks who had no need of liberal white patronization for them to succeed.

Hat tip to The First Street Journal

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Why they can’t have nice things

In an illustration of why the Dickey Amendment was enacted, fake news from the CDC via BBC:

Gun deaths were the leading killer of US children in 2020

Of course, to get there, they had to classify “children” as being up to age 19.

the rise in gun-related deaths among Americans between the ages of one and 19 was part of an overall 33.4% increase in firearm homicides nationwide.

Not mentioned is the fact that teenagers make up a large portion of the gang-banger community.

That’s the “bait and switch”. When most people think of “children” they think of innocent grade-schoolers being killed in accidents – not 17 year old gang bangers dying in a shootout over a drug deal gone bad…which is mostly what the statistics are about.

That’s how fake news is created. It’s based on actual data, but framed in a way that is intentionally misleading. And that’s why the CDC was rightfully prevented from this type of “research” for decades…because when given half a chance, they don’t provide objective information designed to inform the public, they provide political propaganda designed to advance an agenda.

Something that no taxpayer funded, governmental organization should ever be allowed to do.

Luckily, the CDC has pretty much burned any credibility it may once have had over the Wuhan Flu madness, so I doubt that their renewed interest in publishing anti-gun propaganda will gain any traction outside of the usual anti-gun suspects.

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I have an excuse

OK, so my thought that Elon Musk’s bid to buy Twitter might be just a ploy to drive the stock price up long enough for him to dump his shares and make a profit was completely wrong.

It seems he’s serious about this and is making a tender offer directly to shareholders, bypassing the Board.

How is this possible? Well, that speaks to my excuse.

I didn’t think Musk’s intention to buy Twitter could be serious because who in their right mind would think the authoritarian leftists on the Twitter board would consent to selling their shares to someone diametrically opposed to their aims?

But that was based on the assumption that the Twitter board of directors were actually the people invested in the company. Silly me.

As Musk pointed out, the vast majority of the Twitter board’s ownership is in the hands of co-founder Jack Dorsey—some 2.4% of the company—versus about 2.6% owned by the entire board, including Dorsey.

Holy Cow…no wonder they’re willing to disregard the financial interests of shareholders in support of their political agenda…they have very little financial skin in the game. It’s not their financial interests they’re throwing under the bus, it’s other people’s.

But that’s just the leftist way, isn’t it? When conservatives see a need, they give their own money to try to solve it. When leftists see a need, they take other people’s money, skim some off the top, give most of the rest of it to their cronies and then whatever scraps are left are squandered on “solutions” that do nothing than make the original problem worse…which makes sense, because making the problem worse keeps the gravy train rolling. If you solve the problem, you don’t have an excuse to keep taking other people’s money, now do you?

At any rate, my mistake was assuming that the members of Twitter’s board actually owned a significant enough amount of twitter that they could prevent a Musk takeover by simply refusing to sell him their shares.

Not the case. If Musk can convince the actual shareholders (you know, the one’s who’s financial interests are being thrown under the bus by the board) to sell their shares to Musk, he can buy the company right out from under the board.

I’m not exactly a big fan of Elon Musk, but in this case, I’m rooting for him.

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Masks on a Plane

I just got back from a business trip to Spokane, WA (by “just” I mean I got home last night after midnight).

On the way to Spokane on Monday, masks were required on the flight. The next day, while on the job, I find out that shortly after I landed, the mask mandate had been overturned by a federal judge and all the airlines had immediately rescinded the requirement. So on the trip out, I missed out on being able to fly mask free by a couple of hours.

Then I hear that they’re appealing the ruling, for our own safety of course, because we heathens are too stupid to be trusted with our own health and safety.

I read somewhere yesterday that some polling company manufactured conducted a poll that said something like 55% of the population supports the mask mandate.

Well, unless the respondents to the poll never fly and support the mandate out of spite, or a majority of people completely lack self control and won’t do what they think is right unless forced, those numbers are slightly exaggerated. I’d say about 20% of the people in the airport and on the flights yesterday wore masks.

I took this picture at the Denver airport yesterday. I took it to show that there were no seats in the gate area and everyone was having to sit on the floor (how ridiculous is that?) but you can get an idea of how many people were wearing masks.

I suppose it’s possible there are a lot of people around who think people should wear masks but won’t do it themselves unless forced, but I doubt it.

I think the mask mandates are supremely unpopular and, if the Biden Administration succeeds in finding a judge that overturns the overturn and people are forced back into masks on airplanes, there are going to be a lot of unhappy people becoming even more unhappy.

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The End of an Era

The old truck is sold. That truck and I have been through a lot together over the past 15 years or so and I’m really going to miss it.

I’m glad to have the newer, more powerful truck but it just doesn’t have the character of the old one. By the way, We’ve been on the waiting list for a spot to store the camper at the Navy MWR lot on the base since we bought it. A spot finally opened up and I towed the camper over there a few days ago. With the new truck, I could barely feel the camper back there. The difference in power is really amazing.

But I digress. We got a lot of interest in the truck…I was actually shocked at how much…and we sold it within two days of putting it up for sale. Probably should have asked for more considering. The guy who bought it is a diesel engine mechanic by trade. He hit a deer with his truck a few weeks ago and really needed a new truck quickly. He said he already knew a guy with a low mileage used engine he can drop in it next weekend and have it on the road again almost immediately.

Really nice guy. I’m glad it’s going to someone who can fix it and will get some good use out of it.

The end of an era.

On a related topic, I’ve got a 5 day trip to The Estate planned for next week. I’ve got a tractor reserved (again) to rent so we’ll give that another shot…hopefully the weather will hold up this time. I’ll let you know how it goes.

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