sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Imagining Six and Seven

Sixth Generation Fighters

In case you were wondering...the F-22 and F-35 are Fifth Generation fighters. So what's next? Pilot or no pilot? 

Navy concept, (right) with cockpits.

Drones/UAV's are clearly useful in a number of rolls, but the old fashioned part of me still can't conceive of a front line fighter that doesn't have a pilot/aviator even if much of the aircraft is fly by wire/computer.

Will seventh generation fighters be space-capable? It's worth thinking about because it would add another dimension to the calculus. Today, the aircraft can go higher than the pilot can tolerate (unless he/she is wearing a space suit). It would also give impetus to military bases on the Moon (buried deep within the regolith).

US Space Force Website (maybe your purpose on this planet isn't on this planet)

Space Flag 20-1
Space Flag represents a fundamental pivot from viewing space as a benign environment to viewing space as a contested domain of warfare. This critical exercise provides an educational environment where our space warfighters are challenged to defend, fight, and win in space against a thinking adversary in potential future conflicts.
The current space force are still wearing camo uniforms and I think that needs to be re-considered. There is not much need to look like a tree or bush while in orbit.

1917 (movie review)

During World War I, two British soldiers -- Lance Cpl. Schofield and Lance Cpl. Blake -- receive seemingly impossible orders. 

In a race against time, they must cross over into enemy territory to deliver a message that could potentially save 1,600 of their fellow comrades -- including Blake's own brother.

The War-to-end-all-Wars has been going on for three years. One year previously, in July-November 1916, there were one million casualties at the Battle of the Somme. The British lost 57,000 on the first day of the offensive.

Total Casualties topped 1 million, including the deaths of more than 300,000. British troops sustained 420,000 casualties—including 125,000 deaths—during the Battle of the Somme. The casualties also included 200,000 French troops and 500,000 German soldiers.

And in 1917, that is history, as the war continues to drag on. The original British Expeditionary Force (BEF) of six divisions and the Cavalry Division, had lost most of the army's pre-war regular soldiers in the battles of 1914 and 1915. In 1917, the bulk of the army was made up of volunteers of the Territorial Force and Lord Kitchener's New Army. Rapid expansion created many vacancies for senior commands and specialist functions, which led to many appointments of retired officers and inexperienced newcomers. Staggering losses by the French at Verdun and by the British, who tried to relieve pressure on the French during the Somme offensive meant that by 1917, things were very thin.

During trench warfare, the trenches changed hands as they were captured by bayonet charges through wire into machine gun fire and carefully ranged modern artillery. In some cases, corpses of the dead were fifty feed deep, encased in mud.

The uniforms, and militaria of the movie were spot on. I could not have wanted for better. The back story could have been expanded on and possibly ten or fifteen minutes toward (but not at) the end might have been cut. But that's me being picky.

I think that it's a movie worth seeing. (more clips)

You can't tell the story of World War One because you can't put the smell in the movie. But you can try and tell a version of the story.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Demonstrations (a personal journey)

If you would have asked me twenty years ago (circa 2000) if I would have attended a political demonstration as a demonstrator, not as an intelligence officer, collecting against the crowd, I would have laughed at you and said that you have to be kidding. But think back. In 2000, the World Trade Center had not been attacked. In October 2001, nobody on the planet would have thought that America would have a president named Barack Hussein Obama with deep communist roots and a serious love of Islam who would take office in 2008. If you'd have predicted it, everyone would have laughed at you and would have told you that you needed to have your head examined.

But elected he was and I became one of the throng of Tea Party people who showed up, to various events. I met Palin and Breitbart out in the desert at Searchlight, Nevada near Harry Reid's house. And those are the circumstances surrounding the formation of Virtual Mirage, because I wanted a digital record that the nation did not go along with the Obamanation. If you go back and read, that was the text in the early days of this blog. And there were a few bloggers who I met back in that day such as Woodsterman and Old NFO. We read each other's blogs and when we all happened to be in town, we met in person and we found out that we all had the same thing in common. We had a love of country and were concerned where things were headed. Many of the people were veterans, who had put it on the line. 

Then came Donald J. Trump, and I attended a Trump rally at Costa Mesa, CA. Just one in a crowd of thousands. Bear with me because there is a point to this. In all cases, the conservatives (so-called "astroturf") who gathered together were polite, thoughtful, picked up their trash, didn't hurl insults, and just wanted their voices to be heard. It's just the way the Second Amendment protest in Richmond went down yesterday. When I was sitting at the Trump rally in Costa Mesa, waiting for the great man to speak, the people next to me went and bought me lunch at the venue. Not because they had to or because I asked them for something for nothing. It's what decent people do.

No cars were overturned, no shops were looted, nobody was injured, no insults were hurled. They were Americans, concerned about where the country was headed. Most of them had never done this sort of thing before because the core of the nation had not been under attack. Even given the unpopularity of Obama with the people, nobody called for his death, they didn't mock him. They simply disagreed, and Congress was shocked. As I mentioned, we were referred to as "astroturf" because we couldn't be a grass roots movement. We were too clean, too well groomed, we took off work to be there and went back to work when the demonstration ended. We made our own signs. Nobody bussed us there and paid us to shout. 

That's what happens when America responds to injustice. It wasn't a gathering of filthy inner-city people, who are paid to protest, leave trash, loot, burn and so forth. The media is perplexed. The politicians are confused. How could a group of admittedly heavily armed people gather to express their discontent and not injure anyone? It's because they are decent people, who are also free people, and want to keep it that way. It is the essence of what America is. They are not parasites, they work, and earn for their families. They are good neighbors, they are the teachers and firemen and policemen and mechanics and insurance salesmen and so forth who were not born with a silver spoon in their mouths. They are not the Hollywood elites. They're mothers and fathers and grandparents who have a stake in the outcome. They represent all races, all faiths, and economic groups.


Demonstrations give me hope for the future of the nation, and gatherings of this sort strike fear in the hearts of the progressives who work so hard to damage the essence of America. People are not mocked for their differences, they are embraced as fellow patriots. And they didn't vote for Hillary Clinton no matter how much the corrupt, lying, media shilled for her. If you showed up with a sign that indicated that you disagreed, nobody hurt you. They'd just ask you if you're ok.

Imagine somebody showing up at the Second Amendment rally in Richmond who carried a sign that said, "Take my Guns! - NOW". People might laugh at the fool and they might say, if you don't want a firearm, you don't need to buy one. It's about choice. But that is not what they're doing at the Virginia Legislature. It's not about choice. It's not about rights, that began 244 years ago. It's not how the progressives think. It is not part of their agenda. Decent people disagree with the collectivists, and the communists, and the donkeys. And they gather peacefully.

Finding the Correct Pronoun

(link) On Wednesday, a divided panel of the New Orleans-based U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled, in 2–1 fashion, that a transgender litigant — a biological male who suffers from gender dysphoria and subjectively feels that he is a female — cannot require a court to address him using female pronouns. 
The case, U.S. v. Varner, pitted Reagan nominee Judge Jerry E. Smith and Trump nominee Judge S. Kyle Duncan in the panel majority, against Clinton nominee Judge James L. Dennis as the lone dissenter. What made the opinion particularly fascinating was that Duncan’s majority opinion used male pronouns, whereas Dennis’ dissent used female pronouns.
"No authority supports the proposition that we may require litigants, judges, court personnel, or anyone else to refer to gender-dysphoric litigants with pronouns matching their subjective gender identity."

In a nutshell: You may have favorite pronouns to describe your biological identity but the court doesn't care.

In life, one may hate a father, trample a flag, mock Christ, lust for a sister, rejoice at seeing a Muslim woman lashed to death for removing her headscarf, and so on. But you can't force people to refer to you in a gender specific way that does not match your genetic code. Not anymore.

Monday, January 20, 2020

Monday Madness

MEXIT - Another View

Britain has resumed the tradition of sending outcasts to the colonies. Her Royal Highness is playing a clever game by dumping the lazy wastrels (weak DNA) outside of the Island.
LONDON – British Parliament has passed a law that will resume the practice of sending its criminals, debtors, society’s rejects, and Harry to the colonies by penal shipment or banishment. 
The law, which was given Royal Assent by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, coincides with the imminent arrival of Prince of Sussex to the Dominion of Canada where he will now reside. 
Canadians expressed a mix of disappointment and resentment that the country will be used as a dumping ground for outcasts.

“Couldn’t New Zealand take him?” said a Vancouver Island resident opposed to the Prince’s relocation. “What about the Falklands Islands? Couldn’t he be some sort of useless viceroy position there instead?” 
Pickpockets, orphans, and members of the Royal Family unfortunate enough to be the second or third born in a primogeniture succession system will be cast out of Great Britain immediately without any recourse.
The Power of Her Pen

More on Pelosi from the Bee 

(link) WASHINGTON, D.C.—Nancy Pelosi has announced a new creative fundraiser for Dems in 2020: auctioning off limited-edition replicas of the dentures she wore during Trump's impeachment.
It's a way to show your support for the donkeys, and you get the gift as well.


Sunday, January 19, 2020

A Dating Site?

We know that the President speaks the truth...

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Weekend Update


Let me put it this way (trying to be kind to the extent that it's possible). 

You can be a fat, slovenly, oaf with a moderately low IQ and still be able to get laid in North Korea. Then again, you can also be Harvey Weinstein, who is sort of the Kim Jong Un of Hollywood. It gives hope to all the men out there.

And there you have it.

Cat Got Your Tongue?

I didn't watch the Democrat debate because frankly, I don't care what they have to say. But I did watch the highlights, and this was what I hoped that Bernie would have said:

I think that Thin Lizzy has shot her bolt and now there's nothing much left to say about her. She's going down to defeat to the other communist running for the presidency.