sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Tire Drama Update

You may or may not recall a recent rant featured here on this very blog, "Has the Automobile Tire World gone Mad".  You will recall that a number of tire dealers gave me trouble for wanting them to install 5 new tires on bead-lock wheels.

On the phone, it was easy for these people to be dismissive of me. Having been dismissed, I pulled the locking ring from the tire and the tire deflated. As I suspected, a dry rot situation. These things happen. The tire is shot and needs to be replaced. It's not rocket science.

There is something else to be considered. The rear two tires (older) are showing signs of the same problem and if I pull the locking rings and they deflate, it's going to be a P.I.T.A. for me to get everything to the tire store. It's do-able but it's also easier for me to drive the FJ there and have them pull the tires.

Realizing that it's much easier to be kissed off the phone instead of in person, I drove to Big O Tires (not the place that gave me crap earlier - however they did tell me on the phone that they wouldn't do bead-lock wheels) and spoke to the manager this morning. The tires are going on the bead-lock wheels, no extra charge, we love to have your money and your business Mr. LL.

So the Nitto Terra Grappler 305/70/R17's will be replaced by Nitto Terra Grappler G2 295/70/R17's. The G2 is a different version of the TG and I'm dropping one size to reduce some of the rubbing issues that oversize tires give me in tight turns. (Still a 33" tire, not quite so wide)

That means that the time I budgeted for pulling locking rings without an air-wrench, can be devoted to more frivolous things like having lunch!

Numbers and Chalk Talk

Fresh from the Trump Campaign Rally at Costa Mesa, CA, I checked the polling for Donald Trump in the key state of Indiana. Real Clear Politics (average of recent polls) have him at +6 over Cruz.   The most recent poll has Trump up by 9% over Cruz and he appears to be gaining strength going into the Tuesday Primary.  Gov. Pence endorsed Cruz, but praised Trump...strange.

I learned not to trust polls implicitly. The last time that I did that, I ended up owning Mr. & Mrs. Adrienne a dinner (that I still have yet to make good on).

The latest polling for the June 7th Republican Primary shows Trump +27 in New Jersey and the Fox News Poll has Trump +27 in California. Which means that those states, rich in delegates - likely to swing even more heavily toward Trump in the coming month, should put him over the 1237 mark, destroying the GOP elite's dream of a contested convention where they can nominate Mitt Romney or Carl Rove as a "white knight" to save the Party from the likes of Trump and Cruz. 

Kasich has Ohio to offer, but at this point, I doubt that Trump cares.

Here are a few politicians that I really like and who would make excellent people to be elevated in a Trump Administration. Are you listening Donald? (crickets)

Col Martha McSally
Congresswoman Martha McSally (R-AZ) USAF Academy Graduate, Retired USAF Colonel, Fighter pilot and squadron commander. She's a woman who is very tough on the border, understands defense issues and is very smart.

She has limited political experience but is trustworthy and takes no prisoners. Secretary of Homeland Security?

Capt. Tom Cotton
Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR) US Army, Captain,  combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, Harvard graduate, very smart, a very fast study and shares conservative values. He was a congressman and now he's a junior senator but he is one to watch. Tom Cotton will likely be president some day. You heard it here first. He's be an excellent vice president to Donald Trump.

Major Duncan Hunter
Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-CA) (the younger) is a major in the Marine Corps Reserve with two or three combat tours under his belt. He succeeded his father in representing the 50th Congressional District. He was the first member of congress to endorse Donald Trump. He is beloved of the West Coast SEAL Teams, and is a true patriot. 

While I think that he's doing an excellent job in congress, I think that it's time for him to move into a senior slot into the Defense or State Department. We need more combat veterans in leadership roles in the executive branch of government.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Trump Rally Report (part two)

Continued from part one

The demographics of the crowd were split between men and women about 50/50, with a median age of about 35. There were many older and many younger. As is true of Orange County, about 90% of the people attending were white or of Hispanic origin with the remainder either black or Asian persuasion. I didn't see any Muslims wearing traditional clothing.

In line on the way in, about 75% of the people standing near me were women. I asked them why women didn't like Trump. It was the only time that I "felt threatened" as they - to a one - went off on how that is a pack of mainstream media lies. "How can you swallow those lies?" One lady asked sincerely. So much for the answer to that question.

A lot of men came from work and wore suits and ties, one lady standing next to me, in the photo from 'part one', must have had $100K in diamond rings and things. She was there with her son. Her husband (a plastic surgeon) dropped them off and would pick them up afterward. A lady standing in front of me wore a single strand of pearls. This is Orange County, and it's definitely not the Rust Belt. The people around me all appeared to be college educated. The men that I spoke with were stock brokers, doctors, an architect, a civil engineer, an off-duty police officer and a man who owns a factory. The women mostly worked or were trophy wives...The OC, right? There was a high percentage of attractive women in attendance. Not the toads and crones that you generally associate with a Sanders crowd.

A group of people whose family members had been murdered by illegal aliens in California staged a mini-demonstration by parading their banners through the crowd. The Stolen Lives Quilt received a standing ovation and later ended up on stage with Mr. Trump.

The Stolen Lives Quilt Protest
Meanwhile, about five miles away at another, much smaller pre-rally gathering about five miles away in Anaheim, a young Mexican male sprays mace in the face of 72 year-old Mr. Rodriguez, who expresses his political support for Donald Trump.

The crowd
In response to Fredd's question: Inside the venue the crowd was respectful and there was no trash on the ground. The same was true of the entryway into the arena on my way in.  On the way out I didn't see any trash on the ground either, but the police kept the protestors away from the area where the thousands of Trump supporters stood waiting in line to get into the event.

I heard that a protestor threw a rock through the window of an Orange County Sheriff's Department car at sometime during the event, but we didn't see any of that inside the venue. As with the Tea Party rallies of seven years ago, people were respectful of others, were generally friendly and used restroom facilities. There were porte-potties available to the protestors (and those in line to attend the rally) outside. I didn't see scat on the ground on my way out, but there were a lot of people.

The stage is set
Near the venue I only saw about a dozen protestors, all Mexicans, carrying Mexican flags. Apparently they were representing the open border and free cheese crowd. They were surrounded by the news media, who were in turn surrounded by Sheriff's deputies, including about 8 mounted on horseback. There were another two dozen protestors on Fair Drive as I left the event, a couple of the signs compared Trump to Hitler.

I didn't see anyone smoking anything at the event. The Trump supporters (as one would expect) looked to be the 'backbone of America' type of people.

Donald Trump
The people sitting next to me went for sodas and snacks and bought me both. I tried to pay them but they refused to take money. Such was the mood of the crowd. They were happy, they felt comfortable together and they all felt that America's greatness was in jeopardy.

There was some sort of protestor activity outside that delayed Mr. Trump's speech for a few minutes and then he took the stage. Euripides, he owned the crowd. It wasn't one of those religious tent style charismatic ownership things. These were people who wanted to see jobs brought home to America, who wanted some hope for a brighter future and felt that Donald Trump could help solve the Washington problem. They weren't a crowd of unsophisticated and under-educated people by in large. 

Trump's speech was what I heard elsewhere on television or read in the media with the exception of his discussion of General John J. (Black Jack) Pershing's actions during the Moro Rebellion. Since the Moros were Islamic, he related it to Pershing's response to Radical Islamic Terrorism.
(Wikipedia) Pershing is the only American to be promoted in his own lifetime to General of the Armies, the highest possible rank in the army; a law passed in 1976 retroactively promoted George Washington to the same rank but with higher seniority, ensuring that he would always be considered the senior ranking officer in the Army. Allowed to select his own insignia, Pershing chose to use four gold stars to distinguish himself from those officers who held the rank of General. After the creation of the five-star General of the Army rank during World War II, his rank of General of the Armies could unofficially be considered that of a six-star general, but he died before the proposed insignia could be considered and acted on by Congress.
Mr. Trump said that General Pershing lined up 50 Islamic terrorists. Then he had two pigs brought forward and slaughtered in front of them. 50 soldiers, opposite the terrorists all dipped their bullets in the pig entrails and loaded the cartridges. They then executed 49 of them with the pork-infused rounds and gave the 50th man a cartridge covered in pig blood and excrement and told him to take it back and explain what he'd seen. Trump said that while we find it difficult to do that today, it ended the violence in the Philippines for 42 years.

He brought up water boarding, which I consider to be moot. Every US Military member who goes through Search Evasion Resistance Education (SERE School), is water boarded and treated in the same way that the US prisoners in the "black sites" were. You can call it torture if you must, but people like fellow blogger Old NFO and I have been through it as have many tens of thousands of other Americans.

The rally was fun, the people there were fun and very much of one mind. The event was peaceful and collegial. I realize that there were 'wet backs' protesting outside of the venue and various and sundry paid agitators, bussed in, given a sign, $40 in cash and a box lunch - wrappers left on the ground, but it didn't reach inside to the event.

Trump Rally Report (part one)

Waiting in line...sort of a line, more of a get in
Trump's NY style of approaching (almost everything) problems puts me off too, but there are a lot of people who have known him for 40 years who like him a lot. He has made billions by making good financial decisions and people who work for him like working for him. He expects results, but every CEO who wants to remain CEO feels the same way.

That was my mindset when I set off to attend a Trump Rally at Costa Mesa, CA and report on it to you blog readers. First, my general thoughts.

Kasich doesn't hold rallies because people don't show up. He holds "town hall meetings" of fifty or sixty people because he can attract that sort of attention. That's not true with Trump.

There are assumptions that political scientists make. One such assumption, that voters follow the signals sent by party elites and officeholders. It is the basis of the famous “party decides” thesis in political science, which was invoked early and often to explain why Trump couldn’t possibly end up as the Republican nominee.

Except that's not how it's working out.

Trump supporter standing next to me in line
The GOP elites are working behind the scenes to run the nomination process to a contested convention where they can deny Trump (and Cruz and Kasich) the nomination.  Once Jeb! imploded, the party elite never managed to coalesce around an alternative (as of right now, only four United States senators have explicitly endorsed Ted Cruz) though they did take a stab at making Rubio their favored son until Trump destroyed him in his home state of Florida.

Before Trump, there were thresholds of ideological reliability and electability, and you had to clear both to be the  GOP nominee. That's how things worked. But with a Congressional approval rating of 8% favoring them, the old guard's credibility cracked.

Every ideological faction in the party regards Trump with mistrust, disgust, suspicion, fear. Pro-lifers, foreign-policy hawks, the Club for Growth, libertarians — nobody thinks Trump is really on their side. And yet he’s winning anyway. Or at least he’s winning a plurality. So perhaps Trumpism can be understood as a coup by the G.O.P.’s ideologically flexible minority against the conservative movement’s litmus tests; indeed to some extent that’s clearly what’s been happening. The elites maintain that he’s untrustworthy and unelectable — a combination that you’d normally expect engaged partisans to consider and reject. And yet he’s winning anyway.

Rubio is silent. I think that he's waiting in the weeds in the hope that he can join Team Trump with his 127 delegates... I didn't see any pro-Rubio people at the rally.

Waiting for Candidate Trump
Obama should take a victory lap because more than anyone else, he created Trump. Eight failed years, the military weaker than it's been since the Second World War began, 60 million people on food stamps, racial matters as tense as they were in the 1960's, and a Congress that people find difficult to trust.
Ok, on with the rally. I arrived an hour before the gates opened and there were several thousand people lined up ahead of me. It took another hour (total of two) to make it through security once the gates opened and the best seats were taken but my seat was fine. The Pacific Amphitheater holds about 10,000 people with the overflow filled.  All of the seats were taken and there was standing room, but all of the seats were filled.

The Orange County Sheriff's Department handled outer security and we heard (but I didn't see) that people jumped a fence. They were promptly taken into custody.  There was another protester in a "Hillary 2016 t-shirt" who began to blaggard Trump (who hadn't taken the stage). Security removed him.

(continued on part two)

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Accounting for Time

Wednesday I went out into the Mojave Desert and dropped by a Buddhist temple where the high panjandrum is a friend of WoFat (blogger) and me. 

There are plans to build two much larger stupas (monuments), both 36 feet high in this area. Since I'm not a Buddhist the significance of this is generally lost on me. However, it's an excuse to going off-roading as well as visiting. 

Being in the middle of nowhere is the best place on Earth (paraphrasing a quote from Steve McQueen - and if you don't know who that is, you're a child)

The Toyota FJ performed well as I am accustomed to having it operate. It's a 9.5 year old rig but it runs like new.

Thursday, I'm going to attend a Trump Rally. I've seen them on television but I want to be there as your correspondent. I wonder if they'll give me a Press Pass for the Virtual Mirage Blog? In the event that they don't, I ordered a ticket on For those of you who have not attended a Trump function and may want to, the schedule of upcoming events is on that website.

Event Time: Thursday, April 28, 2016 at 7:00 PM
OC Fair & Event Center - The Pacific Amphitheater100 Fair Dr
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
General Information: No posters, banners, or signs may be brought into the event. There is no dress code. No professional cameras with a detachable lens are permitted. No tripods, monopods, selfie sticks, or GoPros. ID is not required for entry. For further questions, please email
The venue will seat about 18,000 people so it's not a particularly large event by Trump standards. 


To answer those of you who want to know if I am only a man of leisure - I try and maximize the time I take for me. Example: The worst day fishing is better than the best day working.  It's all about time management.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Here and There


Yesterday, the South China Morning Post reported that later this year China will start land reclamation on another disputed reef in the South China Sea. According to the report, China intends to establish an outpost on Scarborough Shoal that would allow China to “further perfect” its air coverage across the South China Sea.

Scarborough Shoal, which the Chinese call Huangyan Island, is a reef that is mostly underwater at high tide, but surrounds an inner lagoon. The highest point is called South Rock, which stands almost six feet above sea level. Including the lagoon, the shoal covers 58 square miles of shoal and sea area.

The Philippines claims the shoal. It lies 143 miles west of Luzon and is located within the Philippines’ 200-nm exclusive economic zone. In 2012 China sent ships to the shoal and essentially jumped the Philippine claim, after a two-month standoff between Chinese naval ships and the Philippine Navy. China maintains patrol ships near the shoal to chase away Filipino fishing boats.

Scarborough Shoal is not part of the Spratly or Paracel island groups. Its location and potential size after reclamation operations make it an ideal site for establishing an air defense site or for building another air strip. An air surveillance and air defense site would fill a large gap in perimeter air defense coverage of the sea areas over which China claims sovereignty. An air base at this location would place Chinese aircraft in range of Manila without aerial refueling.
For reference, Scarborough Shoal is 376 nm from Woody Island, the main Chinese military base in the Paracels, and just over 500 nm from Fiery Cross Reef air strip in the Spratlys. The distance to Manila is 191 nm. 
Sovereignty over Scarborough Shoal is one of the issues in the Philippine case before the international tribunal under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. As it concerns the Philippines, the leak to the Hong Kong media reinforces the longstanding message that China will ignore any finding by the tribunal.

By making the decision, Beijing puts the US on notice that China intends to halt unapproved overflights and freedom of navigation operations. Construction of an air defense installation or an airstrip on Scarborough Shoal would support the judgment that China intends to establish an Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) over most of the South China Sea.
Either the Philippines and the nations opposing Chinese expansion and exploitation stop them now, or it will be too late. My guess is that nobody has the spine to stop the Chinese and they will continue to grab whatever they want.


Kenyan Interior Secretary Joseph Nkaissery said on 24 April that Kenya will resume construction of a 700-kilometer (435-mile) security wall along its border with Somalia. Nkaissery said the wall will help keep out al-Shaba’ab elements attempting to infiltrate from Somalia and will bar unwanted persons from illegal entry.

Kenyan authorities announced in March 2015 that they intended to build a barrier with checkpoints and limited access along the entire border from Mandera, in the north, to Kiunga, in the south, based loosely on the Israeli barrier wall project. Construction began by November, but the project stalled for lack of funds and came under criticism as a waste of public funds. 

The terrorist attack at the Westgate Mall in Nairobi in 2013 and the al Shaba’ab attack at Garissa University in April 2015 exerted strong pressure on the government to improve security. Ethnic Somalis live on both sides of the border and move back and forth easily. The barrier will control population movements, which have served as cover for al Shaba’ab terrorists. 

I find it fascinating that Obama and the Pope have not called on the Kenyans to build bridges (for terrorists to cross) instead of a wall.


Trump scored a victory winning every county in each of five states voting in the Republican Primary yesterday.  The margin of success exceeded everyone's expectations. The "never Trump" crowd remains in denial.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Going Galt?

I really can't stand the Republican Party. The GOP has lost all credibility with me. By that I mean the elite cadre who claim ownership of a party that generally stood for what I believe in. The foolish, childish games played by the "never Trump" gang goes against everything that the primary process should be.

I recommend an article, Ted Cruz: The Walking Ghost for your perusal.

Something needs to happen after this election cycle because watching how the sausage is made has seriously put me off the systems that both major parties use to rig a nominee of their choice. 

Maybe I will "go Galt", or perhaps a credible third option will emerge, but what we have going with the scramble to knock off the front runner is wrong. Gleefully, Little Marco has entered this rat's nest cabal with Cruz and Kasich to throw his delegates into the mix. In a world of small men, these guys are Lilliputians. 

Favorite Stuff

I thought that I'd share some of my favorite stuff with you, avoiding firearms, knives, archery equipment, tomahawks, fishing tackle and things with internal combustion engines. Those are my very favorite things but I'm always blogging about those things.

Like, don't like. I'm only sharing.

(1) Saddleback Leather Company.  Their tag line is that "your children will fight over it after you're dead". Their products are not cheap, but neither are they cheaply made. I have a number of items from this company and they do last literally forever - from briefcases, to wallets, to passport cases, to belts to luggage. 

People comment on Saddleback Leather products because they are well made and they do look good. I'm not shilling something to you simply because people do comment on them, but they comment for a reason. My sons-in-law will fight over them after I'm dead. I'm sure of that.

(2) Savage River Canoes. If you are in the market for a canoe, you should look here first. They are not the largest canoe company, and most of their canoes are custom built to reflect the customers specific needs and requirements. They use the latest technology in manufacture, implementing a resin transfer vacuum bagging process with Kevlar, Carbon Fiber and Epoxy resins resulting in the lightest weight-to-strength ratio possible. Savage River builds racing canoes and ultra-light tripping canoes that are easy to portage/launch and are very fast in the water (easier to paddle and maneuver). 

(3) Synergy 190 Parachute.  Precision Aerodynamics - When looking for a main chute, the Synergy 190 is as good as you are going to get. The Synergy (there are several models, I prefer the 190) is a 7-cell lightly elliptical zero porosity canopy that is easy to fly and land. It does not have the performance of a 9 cell elliptical chute, but when you're a bigger guy, the 190 has more wing loading and it gives more performance than you'd enjoy if you were lighter weight. It packs small, it deploys evenly and pleasantly and - well, it's my choice of parachutes. I favor the Precision Aerodynamics Super Raven as a reserve chute. Sport skydiving is fun and presents interesting ways to spend a day off work.

(4) SCUBA gear. I've been asked by some people who read this blog to recommend SCUBA equipment. Because I tend to be a dinosaur, most of my recommendations tend toward the rugged and reliable rather than the trendy and colorful.  There is a VAST difference between technical diving and sport diving. I've done both closed circuit, SAT, and sport (compressed air) diving. Sport diving is fun and if you don't panic and are properly trained, it's safe. Military and industrial diving is an exercise in keeping your head in the game (usually dive in completely obscured 3rd world polluted harbor water). Even then things do go wrong.

I've been diving Suunto dive computers since they first hit the market and I like them, but they are expensive. Since my neck is on the line, I prefer a computer that will perform and so that's my recommendation (take it or leave it). The Suunto Eon Steel is an excellent computer but I don't have that model so I can't make a recommendation. If I was in the market for a new dive computer, that's what I would buy. 
I learned to dive on Navy dive tables but migrated to computers because they're safer and nobody wants to get bent.
In terms of bottles/tanks for open circuit dives, I favor the steel 105's because I like to dive very negative, and they have a bit more capacity, giving you better bottom time. I avoid aluminum tanks but that's because they leave you positive at the end of a dive and I think that's dangerous particularly for new divers.  I can go on endlessly about dive gear wet and dry suits, etc. but will wrap it up with that.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Has the Automobile Tire World gone Mad?

Before I begin on my own rant, I will share my favorite rant from art/film for you to enjoy.


Let me set the stage in this way. Before beginning the off-road driving season this year, I'm getting the rig ready. That process involves checking EVERYTHING and replacing any part that is in the least bit worn or suspicious. (LSP, I swapped out all of the radiator hoses and the serpentine drive belt last year) This year, I changed the gear oil in the front and rear differentials and the transmission. There was a rear differential breather valve that had been torn off with rough running that needed to be replaced and the E-Locker (locks the rear differential electronically) wires were torn out - likely the same rough running that finished the breather valve.

This year, the tires are all being replaced. They have good tread on them for the most part and even though they are "E" rated with three ply sidewalls, they can  also develop 'dry rot' for want of a better term (as any tire can). Thus I could wait for them to fail somewhere in a forsaken stretch of BLM land between hell and breakfast, or I could replace them now. Thus the subject of the rant.


This is a normal passenger car tire and wheel rim. (right) I am using it for comparison. You'll notice that the bead (where the tire connects with the wheel, there is nothing to hold that bead in place. It's fine for a highway tire because it drives on hardball roads.  (yes, I know that the hubcap obscures the actual bead but trust me, it's a standard road wheel and tire)


If you plan on taking the road less traveled, you will be abusing the tires and wheels and may be running on reduced tire inflation (referred to as "airing down"). If you air-down a conventional tire on a conventional wheel too far, the tire comes off the wheel and that's that. You need to fully re-mount it because it will deflate (there are tricks to inflate the tire and do a 'trail re-mount', but I won't go into those here)


The solution to the problem is to use 'bead-lock' wheels with a special ring that is bolted into place to hold the tire where it belongs even if the tire is barely inflated. The photo (right) is of a stock bead-lock wheel made by Ford for the Raptor. In this case, it's on my 2014 Ford Raptor. Note that it's standard factory equipment.

That won't mean much to you but hang with me as the rant continues. Keep in mind that it's FACTORY OEM EQUIPMENT.

There are many types of bead-lock wheels and retrofits made by many manufacturers for many off-road uses.  My 2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser is heavily modified with  (very heavy off-road/off-trail/get out of the mess that you got yourself into by being stupid) applications. Among those modifications areWalker Evans bead-lock wheels with Nitto TG 305/70/R17E tires. The tires are substantially wider than stock, and are substantially tougher than stock. The wheels are cast aluminum and are exceptionally tough. When the vehicle goes into the crusher (after I'm dead), the wheels will still be fine.

FJC Spare

Note the fact that there are 24 individual bolts that hold the tire firmly to the wheel.


I realize that I live in Southern California and the natural assumption that it is populated by a bunch of "progressive" freaks who belong to the Sierra Club and hate 4x4's, but within 5 miles is just about every possible OEM and after market manufacturer for 4x4 parts. There are a lot of serious off road enthusiasts in my area.


I have contacted EVERY tire store in my area to get the 5 replacement tires (4 + spare) that I want to buy - and we're talking about $1,500 in tires, mounting and balancing. In every case, they told me that they won't work on bead-lock wheels. I used to have the work done at Big O Tires and paid them $25 per tire extra to remove, reinstall and torque wrench the locking rings. They told me, as have all the other tire shops that lawyers have cautioned them against that. 

I found a shop in Oceanside, fifty miles from home, that will do it. I'm not lame, I can do it myself, but I'd rather hire the work done because I'm lazy. But their lawyers said "no".

WHERE ARE THOSE LAWYERS? - DELIVER THEM TO ME!  HANGING IS TOO GOOD FOR THEM! I'm thinking a large ant hill deep in the heart of the Mojave with about a gallon of honey. The only question is whether the ants, the buzzards or the coyotes will get there first. I'm confident that they were Obama voters, that they never knew who their fathers were, hate mom and apple pie as well.


Unless the political elites who own the GOP steal the nomination from Trump (and Cruz - if they screw Trump, they'll screw Cruz too because they hate Ted and fear Donald), he will be the Republican candidate for President of the United States. Tomorrow he is likely to 'run the table' on the Eastern Seaboard'.

The Media and the elite of the GOP both screwed the pooch by not seeing it coming. Life is good when you're a political parasite living inside the beltway eating other men's bread or in New York City where they only spoke with those of their own leanings (New York is as much a bubble as the Washington DC beltway). 
(Washington Examiner) David Brooks, a conservative columnist for the New York Times who has said he would never support Trump, offered perhaps the most startling confession
The media "expected Trump to fizzle because we were not socially intermingled with his supporters and did not listen carefully enough," he wrote at the Times in March. "For me, it's a lesson that I have to change the way I do my job if I'm going to report accurately on this country." 
Brooks' words shook his peers and offered a flicker of remorse for what the media has become — arrogant and isolated from a large portion of the country.
Donald and Melania Trump
Trump's campaign message remains simple while rejecting political correctness. (1) Protect the American economy. (2) Protect American borders (an effective wall separating the US and Mexico and serious scrutiny of Muslims who come to America). (3) Rebuild a military that has been weakened from 8 years of gross neglect and care for veterans, many of whom have been treated shamefully by the Veteran's Administration. (4) Restructure the tax system without radical changes. Part of this is to encourage people to repatriate $2 trillion overseas and invest it in the US economy (5) Shrink government and the cost of government. (6) Make the nation business friendly to promote the creation of jobs.

There have been other more subtle notes to what he's said. South Korea has a vibrant, thriving economy. Why aren't they paying the US for the protection that we provide from a rampaging Communist rogue nuclear state (North Korea), run by a fat, syphilitic, little dictator? What about NATO? Do they pay their fair share. The same can be said for the UN, which is little more than a vehicle for offering diplomatic protection to spies who visit UN headquarters in New York City. 

Trump knows what we all now know to be true. The US and Canada have the largest proven oil reserves in the world - by some margin. We don't need the Middle East and can be energy independent. We're not Europe. I know that there have been some in the Trump camp that are talking about a natural gas pipeline from the US to Europe. Don't laugh. It can be done. Trump is wrestling with ways to pay of the $20 trillion that we owe.
Kasich is jonesing for a seat at the big table. It's not impossible that he'll end up as Trump's vice presidential nominee. The polls show him out performing Cruz on the Eastern Seaboard and he can deliver Ohio.
The Democrats (when Hillary is indicted) will have their favorite ox gored by her own criminality (and help from the FBI). That means that the likely 45th President of the United States will be Donald J. Trump. 

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Putting a Finer Point on the Discussion

By one year of age, the amount of water inside a human being (by percentage of total mass) drops to about 65%. In adult men, about 60% of their bodies are water. However, fat tissue does not have as much water as lean tissue. In adult women, fat makes up more of the body than men, so they have about 55% of their bodies made of water.

The next question is the capacity of human intestines and willingness and enthusiasm that the person has to spread it's product. Politicians and lawyers (most often one in the same) seem to possess the same gene common to carnival barkers and snake oil salesmen - high intestinal capacity and a profound and genuine love of spreading it.

Barack H. Obama (lawyer and politician) took a skill set and turned it into an art form.

Somebody has a solid understanding of hope and change.
I find it amazing that anyone (who isn't black) thinks that Obama did a good job as president. He was worse than Carter, and that's saying a great deal. Black people are happy to see somebody who is 1/2 black in the White House. I get it. They rejected Dr. Ben Carson who is 100% black - and I understand that too. He wanted to hold black men accountable for their actions, stating the "hateful but accurate statistic" that 75% of black children in America are born without a father in the home. That's a solid reason for black people to reject Carson's message. Like Don Quixote, the 'black culture' in America doesn't want to look into the mirror. Over all it's a dismal picture. In many predominantly black neighborhoods in America, the leading cause of death for a black person is murder at the hands of another black.  They default to blaming others for faults that are not with whites or the stars - but are in themselves. Does that sound racist?

Barack ignored that, but he did hand out a lot of welfare, Obamaphones, Obamacare and other "free money" to the tune of $11 trillion that we're never going to see again. But that's not how you make the nation and its people happy - or great.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

The Progressive Movement

A Progressive Restroom Solution

Every woman I know laments that there is a line at the ladies room and none at the men's room. In this era of inclusion and gender confusion what could make better sense than to make every restroom a "men's room" complete with urinals?

Back to Yesteryear

Rosie O'Donnell looks for her lost puppy

Weekend Sermonette

Yes, it's time for yet another rant and Weekend Sermonette.

"Dr. Everything'll be alright (the Beverly Hills shrink)
Will make everything go wrong
Pills and thrills and dafodills will kill
Hang tough children" - Prince (RIP), Let's go Crazy

Prince Rogers Nelson died of a drug overdose a couple of days ago. He should have taken his own advice (above).

Continuing with the Sermonette (rant):

I'm a proponent of military service for young men in particular. I've had a number of work colleagues over the years approach me about the difficulties that their sons have had. In most cases, I recommended the military for a number of reasons. You can learn a trade, go to school, see the world and get paid to do it.  If you don't know how to tie your shoes or wipe your ass, they will train you to do that. In fact, they will teach you everything that you need to know to be a functioning, working, productive human being.

Boys who don't have that sort of forced direction (away from mommy and daddy) struggle with "finding themselves". Nothing is better for a young man than being part of a team doing important things. Nothing is better than learning to get up in the morning, make your bed, keep your gear clean, shine your shoes and be respectful.  And while there are jerks in the service, I found that there were fewer there than elsewhere (by proportion).  Some, like current Secretary of State John (Swiftboat) Kerry, turned out to be genuine turds. You can cite these examples all day, but they are the exception, not the rule.

Joe Dincol became the iconic face of ObamaCare
as 'pajama boy', sitting around the house with a cup
of hot chocolate, talking about who was going to pay
for his health insurance.
Some young men don't meet the physical requirements necessary to join the military, others have issues, or they're on their way to higher education - but there is education that is not in any text book and based on my experiences in life, it is more valuable. I have a Masters in mathematics from the Naval Postgraduate School but what I learned out 'there', has had significantly more value to me than the sheep skin.

The important thing for young men is to go out, well beyond their comfort zone and learn to deal with it...whatever comes.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Times and Seasons

While I'm out and about making the world safe for democracy, you can read and enjoy. Feel free to comment.

Barack is going to the UK to offer pearls of wisdom. Why they let him land in the UK is a mystery to me, but they did. Those calling for Britain to leave the European Union are not happy at that news, with UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage saying Obama should stay home.  I don't take a position on whether or not the UK should stay in the European Union - officially. Unofficially, I think that they are better off on their own.

Progressives will ignore you if you bring  any of this up.

Then there are people feeling the Bern, who wants government to manage EVERYTHING.

Start warming up for Cinco de Mayo (May 5th)

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Rigging the ATM

The elite owners of the GOP are still dazed and confused that NONE of their buddies appeal to the Party at large in the slightest. They were certain that we'd want Jeb! A hundred million dollars and 4 measly delegates later, they watched that domino fall. Rubio wasn't their pick because he was a Tea Party type, but they rode that horse into the ground as well. Who would have thought that Trump would beat Rubio by 20 points in his home state?

Now they're stuck with Texas Tex Cruz, who they really hate and Donald Trump, who they fear. John Kasich needs a psychiatrist, but that's another story. Nobody sees Kasich riding into the GOP Convention in Cleveland as a white knight except John Kasich, himself. It would help if he read Don Quixote. In the alternative he could see the play, "Man of La Mancha", where Don Quixote is defeated by staring into a mirror and seeing himself for the first time. I'm sure that he's a nice neighbor, he's been a political hack all of his life, but he's not wanted as president this year.

It's mathematically impossible for Cruz or Kasich to win the nomination straight-up, so the GOP is going to the rules - and there may be rule changes in store pre-convention. But don't let that fool you. The GOP does not want Cruz and will throw him under the bus. He's as dangerous to them as Trump is. They might accept Kasich because he's been playing ball all his life, but the voters don't want Kasich.

The GOP  Elite doesn't care what the voters want. That should be obvious to all but the most block headed at this point.

They want a show that has the capability of encouraging donors to SEND MONEY (the more the better). Remember, it's the show and the bells and whistles/smoke and mirrors that count here. If Hillary wins, it's good for the GOP Elite because they can raise even MORE MONEY trying to defeat her 'next time'. That's how the game is played.

They'll have a damning FBI report to wave around if she'd not indicted and will be howling with rage, and laughing as the donations to the GOP roll in. Like it, not like it? 

That's the system. And it's rigged to maintain power. What is the difference between a Republican and a Democrat? What's the difference between a white rat and a brown rat? I don't know that it can be changed with a third party because of the money and power in play. We may simply have to live with it or go Galt. (Who is John Galt?) - Yes,  Grunt of Monte Cristo, I know that you live in Galt's Gulch...

Take THAT, Andy

Harriet Tubman $20 banknote
The US Treasury Department announced that Harriet Tubman, a gun-toting African-American Republican woman (who found it necessary to arm herself to remain free) would replace President Andrew Jackson on the front/face of the $20.00 banknote.

As I understand it, President Jackson, will be moved to the reverse of the banknote. President Jackson was the last US President to balance the national debt and bring it to zero. Make of that what you will. 
Walking Liberty half dollar - a woman, potentially white
The news broadcast mentioned that women had never appeared on US money before. Not true.

Sacagawea dollar coin
There were standing and walking Liberty coins, a coin dedicated to an Indian woman who carried her papoose on her back to the Pacific Ocean. The vulture on the back of the coin allegedly followed her on her journey, hoping that she'd trip and fall...,and Susan B. Anthony, a suffragette.  

Susan B. Anthony dollar coin
Margaret Sanger was in the running to have her face on US Currency but her position in favor of sterilizing African American women turned off some in the present administration. Still, she was the first woman to make a solid case for birth control by abortion (for selected people), a popular cause for secular progressives now in control of the executive branch of government in the US. In any event, she didn't make the cut. If she was alive today, she wouldn't be the least bit happy that she was beat out by an old negro slave.

I thought that Oprah Winfrey would be on a US banknote before a slave, who frankly, accomplished little. Winfrey, for what it's worth, created a media empire and rose to be one of the wealthiest women in America. That a black woman, born into poverty can do that doesn't go with the progressive narrative of racism and social injustice. Some contend that Winfrey isn't dead and you must be dead to have your face on a US coin or banknote (somebody call Hillary, she can fix that).

The rumor that Barack's ugly mug would be pictured on a $3 banknote is just conservative propaganda. Disregard it. He's going on a food stamp, not a banknote.

I think that his face should appear on all ObamaPhones as well, but that's just me.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Grinding my Axe

New York State of Mind

New York City is a fun place to visit and if you're wealthy, I think that it would also be a fun and interesting place to live - unless some angry Saudis fly passenger jets into the building you happen to be in.

Unlike a lot of people who are conservative, I don't hate New York City. Since Up-State is largely conservative, I have a lot in common with people there who bitterly cling to God and guns. It's a beautiful, historic place. 

John Kasich, He's catching up
to Rubio's delegate count.
The New York Primaries are high on the list of things to blog about and I'm going to get that out of the way before I gripe about other things. The Trump victory in New York was completely predictable and to me portends a similar victory in the Atlantic seaboard and in California on June 7th. It will bring him to the Convention about fifty votes short of an outright win, and the GOP Elites met today on Capitol Hill to try and decide who they are going to push on the Grand Old Party, since they hate Cruz just as much as Trump. I think that they should breathe life back into Jeb! He can be our nominee. If not him, Mitt..., both proven losers. Maybe they'll nominate their favorite shill Reince Priebus to be president? Why not? He's not a Bush but neither has he ever run for public office, which should make him an "outsider". They will contend that the public will swallow that if they still believe that the Benghazi attack was the result of an internet video that nobody in the Middle East ever saw.

All of you out there who believe that Trump must be stopped have to know that the GOP elites will not hand it to Cruz either.

Peeing Standing

Does this mean that there will be urinals in ladies rooms from here on out? What if a tranny wants to take a whiz and the stalls are all occupied by conventional women (as opposed to the "new womyn)? He either drops the snake into the sink and lets fly or people put urinals into ALL restrooms. Remember, gender isn't an XX/XY thing anymore. It's what you think you are at the moment. The woman of the year is a crazy 65 year old man, after all...who always wished that he could dress up like a woman. And loves his courting tackle too much give it up for the full tranny experience. His ex-wives and kids are so very proud.

Tax Time

The American tax code has the top twenty percent of families paying eighty-eight percent of all taxes paid (Newscom 4/18/16). Forty-five percent of all households pay no income tax at all. (link) When you factor in "earned income credit" - the bottom twenty percent receive a windfall of money that they didn't earn coming back through the vehicle of income redistribution. You pay nothing in and get $10K back in your "tax refund".

Bernie Sanders earned $206,000 last year and paid 13.4% in taxes while most in his income range pay 15%. If Bernie lived in California he'd have paid over 20% because of state income tax, but he doesn't.

Both Sanders and Clinton want to hike taxes on the "rich", which means the middle class, to distribute it to high propensity Democratic voters, and to keep the US-Mexico border open to bring more people in who will feed on the system and vote for them and for their friends.

A flat tax with no deductions for anyone, that impacts everyone is considered blatantly unfair to the like of Sanders and Clinton. Does that mean that the chumps (those of us who do pay taxes) will rise up and demand change? No, that's unlikely given the lowing nature of the bovine voting population.

I feel that I was raped this tax season and nobody even offered me a hot towel. But I still paid.

Obama and Care 

The big legacy that Barack gave to his public is broke and the pull-out of United Healthcare hammered home the last nail in the ObamaCare coffin. Even if Hillary or Bernie win, they're going to have to raise taxes more than they have projected to cover ObamaCare. Free healthcare isn't free.

Barack is a politician, which means that he's a liar. He's a narcissist and that means that he loves his reflection in the mirror above all. So how will he deal with the ObamaCare collapse? He won't do anything - but he will blame Bush, or Trump, or whoever. Sort of the same way that he blames the police for 1000 shootings in Chicago (far more than in Beruit) in the first quarter of 2016.