Rambling

I know that the really popular bloggers put up a post every day, or at least on a regular schedule.

I used to do that as well, back when I was really striving to grow my readership. I pretty much stopped blogging for quite a while for several reasons:

– The gun blogosphere had expanded to the point that there were many voices saying the same things I was saying, and generally saying them better.
– The political landscape was deteriorating to the point that it was disheartening to post on it (that hasn’t changed).
– The big reason is it was starting to feel more like a job than a hobby.

I’ve never even tried to monetize my blog. For a while I was selling CD’s of my gunsmithing posts to raise money to buy a new computer, but that only lasted a year or so, and I’ve had that “new” computer for well over a decade now (and I still use it), so there was never a financial incentive to expand my audience, I was only in this because I wanted a place to vent, and to some degree I felt I had something to add to the conversation.

So, When I started feeling that I was no longer adding anything fresh to the discussion, I took a (long) break).

Now I’m back, but again, this is just a hobby for me. I started again in dribs and drabs just because I had something in my head that I wanted to get out there. I’ve been posting a bit more regularly, but I’m just venting, writing when I think I have something useful to add, or interesting to share, not just to put up a post.

I’ve been working on a remodeling project lately that has taken a lot of my “not at work” time. I stripped the oldest bathroom in my house down to studs and am in the process of rebuilding it. It had some issues and honestly I was expecting to find a lot of water damage in the walls and under the floors, but it wasn’t nearly as bad as I was expecting. It’s a small space so in the process we’re getting rid of the tub and putting in a shower stall. Slow going, but making good progress. I’m almost ready to paint the drywall parts and then start laying tile.

Still working on trying to buy property in a remote undisclosed location. That has hit some snags but we’re trying to move it forward. We’ll see what happens.

Doing my best to move forward, trying to prepare for an uncertain future and hedge my bets, all while actually living and enjoying my life rather than cowering in fear over a not particularly deadly virus.

I’m not very optimistic about the future of our society and haven’t been for over a decade. I think we’ve passed the tipping point. Entire generations have been indoctrinated into the cult of anti-individualism, explicit racism and communistic government control over speech, personal choices and lifestyle.

If we can get the electoral system straightened out in enough states, Republicans may actually even win a national election or two before being completely inundated, but the time is coming when the “traditional” American culture of rugged individualism, personal responsibility and individual liberty will be overwhelmed by collectivism and top down control over every aspect of our lives.

That’s just the way human nature goes. The vast majority of people want nothing more than a sense of security (false or not), and being relieved of the responsibility for making, and facing the consequences of, their own decisions. Most human beings simply want to be “kept”. It’s much easier than being self-reliant and independent. And they’re not even particularly concerned about the conditions in which they’re “kept” as long as it’s not abject misery…and as long as most of the people around them are in the same situation, so they’ve no grounds for jealousy.

At any rate, there’s nothing I can do about it. The leftist worldview isn’t compatible with “live and let live”. They won’t voluntarily leave me alone to make my own decisions and suffer my own consequences, so my best option is to find a place as far away from the people who would control my life as possible, ensure I have good sight lines to the approaches to my redoubt, and post signs on the property line that say “No trespassing: if you can read this, you’re in range”.

So that’s where I’m at. This started out as just an explanation as to why I haven’t posted lately and ended up rambling into a State of the Union address, but there it is.

Your mileage may vary.

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Good Neighbors

I started to leave this as a comment on a blog I read regularly, but it got too long so I decided to move it over here.

Here’s the blog post I was commenting on:

So we have a black locksmith changing a lock.

Someone, presumably a neighbor, called the police to report a person fucking with the lock.

The police arrive.

TikTok ensues.

The replies are full of people hating on the police and the neighbors who called in the complaint.

Read the whole thing.

I’m with J. KB:  Were I the homeowner, I’d be happy and thankful that my neighbors were looking out for my house and called the police to report something suspicious, and I don’t really care that the contractor got all butthurt about it, regardless of his race.

My guess is that this is a rental property between tenants. The neighbors probably didn’t even know the landlord to be able to call them about the suspicious activity, so they did what they could.

“But they were working on the front locks in full view in broad daylight”. OK…and? Most break ins in the US occur during the day. That’s when the house is most likely to be empty…and they certainly don’t want to break in when someone’s home, that’s a good way to get shot (incidentally, in Europe, it’s much more common for break-ins to occur when someone’s home…I wonder why?).

Reminds me of a time long, long ago while I was in the Navy. I was a young E-5…didn’t make a lot and had a family to provide for. We were stationed in Millington, TN and when we first got there, got an apartment in North Memphis in a “predominantly black” neighborhood. When I say predominantly, black, what I mean is that we were the only white family in our apartment building and for all I know, in the entire complex. We never had a problem the whole time we lived there other than some minor noise disputes between our downstairs neighbors and us that were resolved amicably.

But one day shortly after I got home from work, one of the other neighbors in the building came knocking at the door. He was basically “canvassing” the building (why the police weren’t doing it, I don’t know) asking everyone if they’d seen anything that day.

It seems that during the day, in broad daylight, some criminals had backed a U-haul up to his apartment door, broken in and cleaned him out of anything remotely of value.

The few people who were around that saw it thought nothing of it…just another resident moving out.

Apparently that was a common MO in that area at the time. They’d case an apartment complex, find an apartment on the first floor where the resident drove a decent car, dressed nicely and was gone during the day, pull up in a truck one day, act confident like they were supposed to be there and clean the place out.

As far as I know they never got caught.

At any rate, the point is that brazenly doing things in full view in broad daylight doesn’t necessarily mean it’s legitimate and the neighbors were right to report it. If they were my neighbors, I’d be hosting a barbeque for them in thanks.

As far as the police response, I’d have to agree that it was a bit excessive, but the cops did seem to be handling it pretty calmly. No one was screaming at the “suspects” or tackling them to the ground.

Part of the problem in these interactions is the chip on the shoulder that many black people have about police interactions.  When I get stopped or approached by a cop, I assume they’re just trying to do their job and respond accordingly.  I am professional, polite and cooperate in every way I’m legally required to.

Almost every time I see one of these videos, it starts out with the black “suspects” getting all belligerent about the interaction.  The common theme is that the only reason the cops are bothering them is because they’re black.

In this situation, that probably isn’t far off the mark, but the fact is race is a factor in crime…it just is. Pretending that isn’t the case doesn’t change the reality.  Blacks commit crimes in this country way out of proportion to their percentage of the population, that fact is not seriously disputed by anyone on either side of the debate.  Whether they want to admit it or not, young(ish) black men appearing to be breaking into a home…especially in a majority white neighborhood…is suspicious and warrants investigation.

Not necessarily investigation with 6 cops storming the area with tactical rifles up, but you also have to consider what information the cops had to work from.  Most likely, all they knew was that they’d received a report of a burglary in progress.  No idea what city this is, but it’s possible this is the most excitement they’ve had there in months, so everyone wanted to be involved, hence the overwhelming response to such an apparently minor incident.

At any rate, as I said, I’m completely with J. KB on this:  This is the type of public reaction that makes people think twice about getting involved, being good neighbors and trying to protect their neighborhoods; this is the type of thing that ends up enabling crime and making us all less safe.

But, of course, making us less safe is all just part and parcel of the “It’s a feature, not a bug” theme.

 

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Rebekah Jones

A couple of the blogs I regularly read have declared today “everybody blog about Rebekah Jones” day. I don’t have much to add to the discussion so I’ll just take the opportunity to direct you to their efforts.

If you don’t remember, Rebekah Jones was the minor functionary who did data entry for the Florida Department of Health. She made waves by accusing the FDH in general, and Ron DeSantis in particular, of firing her for refusing to falsify the COVID statistics in Florida.

Robert Stacy McCain at The Other McCain details that situation pretty thoroughly.

The Other McCain’s post was in response to some new developments outlined by John Hoge at Hogewash:

First he tells us that, in response to a truthful, but unflattering article about her, Ms. Jones filed a “peace order” (apparently Maryland’s version of a restraining order) against the author of the piece.

Then he reveals that, as the next phase of the attack, before the “peace order” had even gone into effect (it isn’t effective until it’s been served upon the subject of the order), Ms. Jones claimed to the court that the author of the unflattering piece had violated the order.

Then he began a series of well-researched posts unmasking the sordid legal past of Ms. Jones and identifying a distinct pattern of behavior. I won’t link to all of them, I’d just recommend that you visit his blog today and in the future as this develops and as he does more digging. It makes for interesting reading and reinforces a philosophy often stated at The Other McCain:

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A fellow blogger asks “Why Gun Bans?”

Fellow gun blogger Billll asked this morning:

The party that wants to empty the prisons, open the borders, and defund the police, also wants to keep you from owning a gun.

Makes you wonder who, exactly, are they working for?

It all makes perfect sense when you think about it in context.

The Democrats are the party of the left and the left is all about big government centralized control. They want not only to have control over every aspect of the lives of Americans, but over every aspect of the lives of every human on earth. One world government is their endgame and always has been.

The Global Warming religion is one aspect of it. It’s an effort to convince the world that the earth is in an existential crisis and the only way to save ourselves is to cede control to the priests of the religion.

Empty the prisons, defund the police: This is a double whammy for them.

We’ve been taught for several generations that we are not allowed to protect ourselves, that we should leave those things up to the government. Just today I saw an article where the Oakland Chief of Police exhorted the citizens not to defend themselves or others, but to just “be good witnesses”. So, if we follow their advice, criminals are emboldened and crime goes up. When crime goes up, the citizens cry out for their nanny the government to “do something”. This gives those who would rule over us carte blanche to pass laws that do nothing to actually reduce crime, but do a lot to restrict the freedom and self-determination of we lowly proles. The more things they can criminalize, the more control over us they have…all in an effort to keep us “safe” don’t you know.

The second thing that enabling the criminal element does for them is keep the crime rates up, which reinforces their constant calls to disarm the populace. That’s one of the primary things they need to do in the US is relieve us of the tools we need to resist their diktats. The more crime they can engender, the less safe the proles feel, the more cries for nanny government to “do something”, the better positioned they are to pass the laws they need to disarm us.

Open borders/illegal immigration – Also two benefits for them:

The constant influx of people from oppressive countries where they are conditioned to accept overbearing government and restricted freedom dilutes the American culture of independence, resistance and self-reliance.

It also increases the supply of poor, poorly educated people dependent on the government. Many of those poor, poorly educated people will vote illegally in many states, will be counted in the census increasing their representation, and will eventually (assuming they get their way, which I’m sure they will) be granted citizenship en masse, cementing the majority that the left needs to be dependent on government for their survival.

So, the bottom line is that none of this is contradictory as much as it may appear so on the surface. It seems counter-intuitive to say “we’re going to leave criminals out on the street to keep victimizing people” at the same time as saying “you aren’t allowed to be properly equipped to defend yourselves against criminals, that’s the government’s job”, but when you look at the long term goals, it makes perfect sense.

The long term goal is to make Americans dependent upon the government and the elites who run it. To make us nothing more than drones or cogs in the machine that supports and maintains the elite’s power and lifestyles. They’ll do that through any means necessary.

The funny thing about it is how many of the leftists who support this agenda thinking all the while that they’ll be among the elite who get to tell the rest of us how to live, all the while not realizing in the least that they’re just another prole to be exploited. By the time they figure it out, it will be way too late. Probably already is.

The ongoing war against conservative speech is part of the same overall battle. First they prevent us from speaking out, then they criminalize us speaking out and arrest anyone who does so. It’s already started…they are basically defining anyone who values patriotism and traditional American values as a “domestic terrorist”. I have no doubt that my subversive comments on this blog will be used against me someday. The only thing that’s keeping me insulated so far is my insignificance. I have a very tiny audience so my message isn’t being widely disseminated. If it were, I can guarantee you I’d already be on the radar. It’s only a matter of time. They just have to work their way through the big fish before they start getting to the little ones like me. Thankfully, I’m a tiny, tiny one so hopefully it will be a long time before the thought police kick my door down in the middle of the night.

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Youtube Videos

Youtube is owned by Google (or, more accurately, by Alphabet, which is the parent company that also owns google).

Google is evil.

I recently ran a scan of my site and found out that there are several third party cookies being set as a result of posting embedded youtube videos. Sorry about that…didn’t think about it.

Personally I stopped using youtube very soon after they got bought by Google. My videos are all stored locally and when I embed them into a post, I use a locally served, open source engine to do it. No spying on you from my videos.

But many content creators still use youtube because they can monetize their videos there. I’ve never engaged in the fantasy that this was ever anything other than a hobby for me, so that’s not a concern of mine.

I hope that readers of my blog are conscious enough about that kind of thing to have cookies blocked, or at least third party cookies, but I still don’t like the idea that unsuspecting people are being tracked as a result of coming here…so…two things:

First, I’ll not be embedding youtube videos on my site any more. If it’s on Rumble, or Bitchute, or one of the other privacy minded video sites, I’ll consider it, but if it’s a youtube video, at most I’ll link to a site that’s already got it embedded. I’ll never link to youtube. They belong to Google and Google is evil.

I’d prefer it if everyone on the right would just stop using youtube and move to something else, but my opinion is only that, my opinion, and has very little chance of being heeded by the big internet fish when they can make money from their youtube videos…at least until they’re demonetized or flat deplatformed.

But I digress.

Secondly, in addition to no longer embedding youtube videos in my posts, I’ll be going back through old posts and removing the embedded youtube videos that are there. If I can, I’ll post a link to the related info, but a lot of it is old and outdated anyway, so I’ll just delete the embed code.

Hopefully at the end of all that, you will no longer be exposed to tracking cookies from my site even from something as ostensibly innocuous as an embedded video.

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RSS Feed Spam

I had a couple of faithful readers who use Google Reader to get my posts through RSS report they were getting spam in the feed.

I did some research and found some info on this problem. I’ve taken the suggestions to fix the problem so hopefully the issue won’t recur. If it does, please let me know right away (preferably via e-mail) so I can look into it further.

Sorry for the inconvenience.

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I’ve officially taken the Red Pill

I’ve unplugged from the network and there’s no going back.

I deleted all of my google accounts today. I’m sure the remnants of my old blog, picassa account, youtube account, etc will all still be around for a while, and the web crawlers will still have them archived, but I no longer have any active Google Accounts.

Granted, it was a pain to move the blog completely over, but it still has surprised me that more people haven’t taken this step as a result of Google’s new Lack of Privacy Policy, but to each his own.

Personally, I have no desire for any company to be able to compile that much information on me from disparate services and sources. It’s not that I have anything to hide…it’s just the whole idea of it. Maybe I’m being silly about the whole thing. Maybe it’s the era I grew up in. I don’t know, but the shades of Big Brother watching my every online move just makes my alarm bells start to jingle a little too much.

Anyway, the deed is done and can’t be undone so it just doesn’t matter at this point. I’m living the google-free life from here on out.

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Making Progress

I finally finished getting all my videos hosted locally and I reformatted the posts that had some image alignment issues.

If anyone happens to stumble across any posts that the images don’t seem to be aligned with the text properly, please let me know so I can fix them.

I used SQL queries to fix some idiosyncrasies introduced by importing the images from Blogger and to change all internal links from the old blog url to the new one.

Once I figured out the queries to use, it was cake.

All that’s left is to finish recreating the blogroll (which has been slow going as you can probably tell) and delete all my google accounts and the transition will be complete.

I was originally planning on deleting my Google accounts at the end of March, but Google’s new Lack Of Privacy policies go into effect on March 1, so I think I’m going to pull the plug tomorrow. I’m actually a bit surprised that I got it all done this quickly. Considering that I’d been blogging on blogger for almost 6 years, and the sheet quantity of posts, images and links I have up, I really thought it was going to take longer to get everything done.

Anyway…as of tomorrow, I cut the Google apron strings.

I hope that was enough time for people to update links and blogrolls and such. I was expecting to lose some readership over this, but if I ever get off my duff and start posting regularly again, It’ll build back up. If you write it they will come.

Anyway, just wanted to give an update. The way work’s been going lately, the only blog time I’ve had has been spent on this transition. I’m still hoping to get back to blogging more after I get all this done.

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Update and Observation

I haven’t had much time to work on the blog lately.  I have gotten some of the linked youtube videos hosted locally, and I’ve gotten a few more of my daily reads added to the blogroll, but I’ve been working 10 to 12 hour days, had to work last weekend, and just haven’t had much time for it.

Hopefully things will calm down soon.

In the meantime, The Wife added Top Shots to my Netflix Queue for me the other day (thanks hon).  Last night I watched the first show from season 2.

I watched Season 1 until Caleb finally got eliminated but stopped watching after that.  The personal drama and silly sensationalism of the show (which is, of course, the trademark of the reality TV genre, and the aspect of that genre that I dislike the most) rendered the show unwatchable for me.

What I discovered last night, though, is that the ability to fast forward past the petty, political infighting, the breathless attempts to manufacture suspense, and the silly “look at me” self-aggrandizement of the more “colorful” participants and just watch the good parts, not only can I watch an ostensibly hour long episode in about 15 minutes, but it is quite enjoyable to watch when all the stereotypical reality TV claptrap is filtered out.

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Musing

I was thinking today (after reading a comment) about why I haven’t been posting much lately.

When I started this blog, it was back in 2005 (I know my posts don’t go back that far, I actually lost a good bunch of early posts during a transition period long ago) and blogging was really just catching on.  There were some very good gun bloggers out there (most of them are still around and still providing excellent content), but I felt that I had something to add to the conversation.

Also at the time, most news outlets didn’t have commenting features so when I read a ridiculously inaccurate anti-gun article or editorial, I could either send in a letter to the editor and hope it got posted (which I often did anyway), or I could comment about it here.

This blog was a way for me to vent, to openly counter the inaccuracies, fallacies and outright lies of the MSM, and to contribute to the conversation.

Along the way I started blogging about my experiences with amateur gunsmithing…which have become my most popular and most sought out posts.

So, what happened?

Well, my wife lost her job several years ago and because of ongoing medical issues has been unable to work.  As a result, our finances have been pretty strained for quite a long time and I just haven’t had the money to continue my gunsmithing experiments.  I even let my range memberships lapse mostly due to lack of funds.  I haven’t been shooting much, I haven’t been doing gunsmithing stuff so I just haven’t had anything to contribute on that front.

As far as the political/media front.  I think that this is a prime example of why I just haven’t felt the need to berate the media on these pages.

The article just screams out to be fisked, debunked and otherwise excoriated…but…check out the comments section.

250 comments at this writing and only a handful support the premise of the article.  Comment after comment pointing out the flaws in the piece and correcting the record.

And this is on the decidedly left leaning Washington Post.

How could I possibly add to that?   We’re winning and more and more people are coming to see the truth.  Even on the Huffing and Puffing Post (which doesn’t deserve a link), anti-gun articles and posts garner huge responses, primarily from those pointing out the flaws and fallacies presented.   I just don’t see the need to repeat the same arguments here when they are being so thoroughly and effectively presented at the source.

As I said, when I started this, there were some gun blogs around…but now just transferring my blogroll from the old blog to the new is a daunting task.  There are literally hundreds of excellent gun bloggers out there, all providing great content on everything from politics, to product reviews to keeping up with the ridiculous rantings of the anti-freedom fanatics, to shooting and self-defense tips.   Good Stuff.

I simply haven’t felt like I had anything to add.  Anything I could possibly say about the myriad subjects out there has already been said, several times, and much better than I possibly could hope to do so, by other and better writers than I.

No…this is not a segue into why I’m shutting the blog down.  I still like to have a place to spill my thoughts when they come to me and I do believe I still have something to contribute, I just haven’t quite discovered my niche yet.   I will.

Basically, I just wanted to share what little I could in the way of explanation and to take this opportunity to thank those who’ve stuck with me all these years, even during the times that I just haven’t had much to say.

Thanks for hanging in there.  So will I.

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