sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Thursday, February 20, 2020

The Main Event (Democrat Debate in Nevada)

I am not one who watched most of the Democrat debates with much interest, but the slugfest last night was a lot like watching a NASCAR race (with no American flags) that has a lot of pile-ups. So it made interesting viewing. I'll share a few thoughts on it, even though many of you, dear readers, might have seen the same thing.

Billionaires don't like to have their asses kicked and Bloomie/Mini-Mike got a taste of what his $400 million spent on ads bought him so far. The other donkeys really hate him. The question of whether they hate him (Old - White - Billionaire - from New York) more than President Trump is up for grabs at the moment. I would venture a guess that they hate him AS MUCH as they hate President Trump.

It’s hard to imagine how the first debate for the former New York City mayor could have gone much worse for him. Bloomberg didn’t have adequate responses for either, leading to excruciating exchanges that ended poorly for him.
“A billionaire who calls women fat broads and horse-faced lesbians — and no, I’m not talking about Donald Trump — I’m talking about Mayor Bloomberg,” Warren said. “Democrats will not win if we have a nominee with a history … of harassing women and supporting racist policies like redlining and stop and frisk. ... Democrats take a huge risk if we substitute one arrogant billionaire for another.”
Later, Warren came back for more, demanding that Bloomberg release women who have worked for him from the nondisclosure agreements they signed. After several rounds of back and forth, Bloomberg ceded the exchange with an eye roll. He paid good money for the silence of many women, who have signed non-disclosure agreements and he's not going to re-open Pandora's Box. The other contenders found that chink in his armor and they're going to exploit that to the max. Bloomie is uncomfortable with that.

The question is whether or not Mini-Mike is still the "great white hope" to defeat the communists (Sanders and Warren) and hold the Party together. Warren and Sanders came out well ahead of him in the debate even if he does have $60 billion. Maybe somebody needs to find him a box to stand on.

Is the Democrat Party going to morph into the National Socialist Worker's Party with Bernie and AOC leading the charge (with Warren in tow, trying to sound relevant)? That's certainly what it looked like to me last night. 

A lot of mainstream Democrats are uncomfortable about coming out of the closet as full blown communists.  Maybe they need to form another Party and take the RINO's with them?

Meanwhile, the Trump rally in Phoenix last night had to turn away twenty-three thousand people. There wouldn't seem to be any venues large enough for a Trump rally. I had thoughts of attending but didn't want to camp overnight for three days to get a seat, and that's almost what it took. 

Joe Biden held a rally in Las Vegas yesterday and sixty-eight people showed up. He looked feeble and desperate during the debate. He talked a lot about Barack, who continually distances himself from corrupt, sly, old, creepy Slow Joe Biden.

Perhaps the most telling moment of the debate was that none of Sanders’s five rivals said that the person with the most delegates going into the convention should get the nomination, an indication that they’re spoiling for a convention fight even if he comes in with the lead.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

From Hell to Breakfast

Chinese Acquisition

The US needs a truth in origin and packaging law that requires the disclosure of Chinese involvement in any aspect of a product's supply chain.

Smithfield Farms, the largest pork producing farm in the USA was recently sold to China with the unanimous support of its stockholders. The hogs will still be raised here, but slaughtered and packaged for sale in China before being sent back to the USA. This includes labels of Morrell, Eckrich, Krakus, Cudahy, Premium Hams, Cook's, Gwaltney, The same with many chickens. They can now be shipped there, but when they come back all that needs to be labeled is that they WERE RAISED IN THE USA. Not that they were processed in China!!! Our great FDA at work again. The chickens will be all processed and most sold to fast food restaurants for sandwiches, along with schools and supermarkets. The China slaughter and processing are not nearly equal to the requirements here.

Acting Director of National Intelligence

President Trump just named Ambassador Richard Allen Grenell (age 53), current ambassador to Germany to be the acting DNI. Before we discuss more, let's review what the DNI does:
The United States Director of National Intelligence (DNI) is the United States cabinet level official required by the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 to:
- serve as head of the seventeen-member United States Intelligence Community
- direct and oversee the National Intelligence Program
- serve as an advisor, upon invitation, to the president of the United States and his executive offices of the National Security Council and the Homeland Security Council about intelligence matters related to national security
- the director produces the President's Daily Brief (PDB), a top-secret document including intelligence from all the various agencies, given each morning to the president of the United States. The PDB is seen by the president and other authorized individuals. 
On July 30, 2008, President George W. Bush issued Executive Order 13470,[2] amending Executive Order 12333 to strengthen the DNI's role.[3] Further, by Presidential Policy Directive 19 signed by Barack Obama in October 2012, the DNI was given overall responsibility for Intelligence Community whistleblowing and source protection.
Under 50 U.S.C. § 403-3a, "under ordinary circumstances, it is desirable" that either the director or the principal deputy director of National Intelligence be an active-duty commissioned officer in the armed forces or have training or experience in military intelligence activities and requirements. Only one of the two positions can be held by a military officer at any given time. The statute does not specify what rank the commissioned officer will hold during his or her tenure in either position.

The DNI has a staff comprised representatives of the seventeen component organizations that he/she oversees as their representation on the President's cabinet. 

Richard Grenell is President Trump's new pick for the job. He's an openly gay man with limited experience in the business but he is LOYAL to the president. And that means a great deal to President Trump. The staff does most of the heavy lifting. President Trump wants somebody he can trust overseeing the intelligence community. Expect the mainstream media to react with horror at the appointment.


Some feel as if the star is about to go nova. Other scientists predict that it will transform itself into a neutron star. The smart money is against a black hole, but truth is that we're watching something that happened over seven hundred years ago and learning while we watch. (more here). 
Betelgeuse is a red supergiant and one of the largest stars visible to the naked eye. If it was at the center of our Solar System, its surface would possibly extend as far as Jupiter. But all that seems to be about to change.
Twilight Zone

New Fangs for the Navy

Naval Hypersonic Strike 

(link) The Navy intends to deploy its conventional prompt strike hypersonic weapon on Virginia class attack submarines, after previous discussions of putting the weapon on the larger Ohio class guided-missile submarine (SSGN).

The Ohio Class SSGN is a cruise missile carrying submarine, pictured left, mounted (additionally) with two Dry Dock Shelters for MK- 8 SEAL Delivery Vehicles, that I'm intimately familiar with. The SSGN's carry a LOT of Tomahawk cruise missiles and can provide a devastating strike capability.

As the Tomahawks are phased out, I'm sure that the SSGN's will be transitioned to hypersonic weapons - within the next decade.
In its Fiscal Year 2021 budget overview, the Navy outlines a research and development portfolio with 5 percent more funding than this current year – for a total of $21.5 billion – that is aimed at “providing innovative capabilities in shipbuilding (Columbia class), aviation (F-35), weapons (Maritime Strike Tomahawk), hypersonics (Conventional Prompt Strike), unmanned, family of lasers, digital warfare, applied [artificial intelligence], and [U.S. Marine Corps] expeditionary equipment. These technologies are crucial to maintaining DON’s competitive advantage.”


primus pilus

The Primus pilus or Primipilus was the senior centurion of the first cohort in a Roman legion. The origin of the name is ancient. In early republican armies, he was the commander of the first manipol of third line (triarii) A common, but wrong translation of "primus pilus" is "first spear", however a much more accurate translation would be "first pillar" since the word "pilus", sometimes confused with "pilum" or javelin, is a specific term to indicate the weapon of the triarii (a spear, not a javelin).

The Primus Pilus, centurion of the First Century of the First Cohort, was first in the hierarchy among the subsequent 58 centurions in a legion (59 total).

Julius Caesar, a flawed man, but a warrior in every sense of the word, and a man of great personal bravery had nothing but praise for the men who occupied the place of primus pilus in the line. The position was greater than NCO and was sort of a junior officer - but that does not equate well to modern armies.
Napoleon wrote, “The Greeks showed themselves worthy of victory, but the Romans showed themselves worthy of being invincible.”

In Julius Caesar's writings - in his words:

Book 2, Chapter 25: Caesar proceeded, after encouraging the tenth legion, to the right wing; where he perceived that his men were hard pressed, and that in consequence of the standards of the twelfth legion being collected together in one place, the crowded soldiers were a hinderance to themselves in the fight; that all the centurions of the fourth cohort were slain, and the standard- bearer killed, the standard itself lost, almost all the centurions of the other cohorts either wounded or slain, and among them the chief centurion of the legion P. Sextius Baculus, a very valiant man, who was so exhausted by many and severe wounds, that he was already unable to support himself;

Book 5, Chapter 35: At length, each thigh of T. Balventius, who the year before had been chief centurion, a brave man and one of great authority, is pierced with a javelin; Q. Lucanius, of the same rank, fighting most valiantly, is slain while he assists his son when surrounded by the enemy; L. Cotta, the lieutenant, when encouraging all the cohorts and companies, is wounded full in the mouth by a sling.

Book 6, Chapter 40: The centurions, some of whom had been promoted for their valor from the lower ranks of other legions to higher ranks in this legion, in order that they might not forfeit their glory for military exploits previously acquired, fell together fighting most valiantly.

Book 7, Chapter 50: At the same time Lucius Fabius the centurion, and those who had scaled the wall with him, being surrounded and slain, were cast from the wall. Marcus Petreius, a centurion of the same legion, after attempting to hew down the gates, was overpowered by numbers, and, despairing of his safety, having already received many wounds, said to the soldiers of his own company who followed him: "Since I can not save you as well as myself, I shall at least provide for your safety, since I, allured by the love of glory, led you into this danger, do you save yourselves when an opportunity is given." At the same time he rushed into the midst of the enemy, and slaying two of them, drove back the rest a little from the gate. When his men attempted to aid him, "In vain," he says, "you endeavor to procure me safety, since blood and strength are now failing me, therefore leave this, while you have the opportunity, and retreat to the legion." Thus he fell fighting a few moments after, and saved his men by his own death.

Book 7, Chapter 51: Our soldiers, being hard pressed on every side, were dislodged from their position, with the loss of forty-six centurions.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Diverse Topics


It might be helpful if the situation regarding pharmaceutical research be revisited.

Bringing any vaccine or drug to market is very expensive and it's only getting worse. As products hit the market there are teams of lawyers who hope to cash in by getting you 'what you deserve' when they don't work as well as advertised. I realize that Big Pharma gouges with prices, I realize that free enterprise isn't free. But when something goes wrong for the general population, people always look to those private companies for unique and innovative solutions NOW.

Doctors working on the front lines of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak have told the Taiwan Times that it’s possible to become reinfected by the virus, leading to death from sudden heart failure in some cases.

“It’s highly possible to get infected a second time. A few people recovered from the first time by their own immune system, but the meds they use are damaging their heart tissue, and when they get it the second time, the antibody doesn’t help but makes it worse, and they die a sudden death from heart failure,” reads a message forwarded to Taiwan News from a relative of one of the doctors living in the United Kingdom.

The source also said the virus has “outsmarted all of us,” as it can hide symptoms for up to 24 days. This assertion has been made independently elsewhere, with Chinese pulmonologist Zhong Nanshan (???) saying the average incubation period is three days, but it can take as little as one day and up to 24 days to develop symptoms.

Also, the source said that false negative tests for the virus are fairly common. “It can fool the test kit – there were cases that they found, the CT scan shows both lungs are fully infected but the test came back negative four times. The fifth test came back positive.” –Taiwan Times 
Notably, one of the ways coronaviruses cripple the immune system is via an HIV-like attachment to white blood cells, which triggers a ‘cytokine storm‘ – a term popularized during the avian H5N1 influenza outbreak – in which an uncontrolled release of inflammatory ‘cytokines’ target various organs, often leading to failure and in many cases death.
How much is Too Much?

I like axes. I like tomahawks (weapons) and hatchets. I like mauls. What's not to like about tools that do useful jobs? But is this taking a good thing to an extreme?

Do You Feel the Bern?

A lot of the bros feel as if the big win for Sanders' National Socialist Workers is being snatched by billionaire Democrat and former Republican Mini-Mike Bloomberg. To date, Bloomberg has outspent Bernie Sanders by $400 million.

And what if Mayor Pete becomes the nominee? Will he invite Sanders to join the ticket as his VP so that BUTT-BERN can sail on to victory in November?

I can't explain it

The French (historically) loved to put knives on revolvers. This is the Lefaucheux-type hybrid revolver, manufactured in France or Belgium c.~1860′s - no serial number.  Simply can't explain why you'd want to mount what is essentially a pocket knife under a revolver in that period.

7mm pinfire six-round cylinder, double action with a 7.5cm folding blade attachment, ivory grip.

And true to its nation of origin, the weapon has a great deal of style.

During the same time period, the Baby LeMat was being produced by the Confederate States of America Navy - roughly the same size as the Lefaucheux.

It was the smaller cousin of the LeMat cavalry pistol, nine shots in the cylinder, chambered for .32 caliber (rather than the standard .42) and the central barrel is .41 caliber instead of .63 (and in this specific pistol, the central barrel is rifled, where they are normally smoothbore for a shotgun charge).

They weren't as elegant from a bells-and-whistles point of view as their French counterparts, but had much more firepower and didn't need a knife to get its point across.


A map of the British and French dominions in North America, humbly inscribed to the Right Honourable the Earl of Halifax, 1755.

I can't help but wonder what the map would have looked like if the British hadn't been so keen to tax and then decided to take American firearms away.

It's a lesson from the past for the future, isn't it?

These are French dragoons in 1916. Horses and lances (pig stickers) against modern artillery, modern rifles and machine guns. 

They prepared to fight the last war.

The Nepalese Bira Gun

In the 1890’s Nepalese General Gehendra Shamsher Jang Bahadur Rana designed this double barreled hand cranked machine gun which he called the Bira Gun. 

The Bira gun featured a reciprocating bolt which fired each barrel separately one after the other in succession. The gun was chambered for the .577-450 Martini Henry round, as Nepal was an ally of Britain and had large stocks of the ammunition on hand. 

The gun was fed from a large 40 pound pan magazine which held two rows with 60 rounds of ammunition in each. 

Altogether the Bira Gun was a very heavy weapon, weighing almost 1000 pounds, it had to be pulled by horse on a caisson. Unlike all other crank operated machine guns, the Bira Gun’s crank was rotated counterclockwise, rather than clockwise, which supposedly made the gun more reliable. All Bira Gun’s were handmade and produced in Nepal. They were never deployed in combat, but in 1890, they were cool.


Tactics have changed somewhat as have weapons, but the point remains the same.

Sniper and observer from the 1st of the 4th Battalion, Royal Berkshire Regiment in the roof of a barn at Antons Farm near Ploegsteert Wood during the spring of 1915.

Monday, February 17, 2020

Join Now!

Join the Space Force

American Space Rangers are headed out to fight the Coronavirus, wherever they find it!

A Hussar

Military invasions, blending DNA for the past 7,000 years (or more)...

UK Mystery

Forty years ago, I lived in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland while a guest of HM Govt. The details don't matter. Some may still be under the Official Secrets Act, but I'm not sure. One part is not. While living on the Islands, I found myself living in a flat, and in need of a television. At some point, I thought of renting one. The guy who lived next door sold/rented them and I discussed my need. He said, "You'll need to get a license, won't you?" 

Huh? A license? For a television?

LL - that long ago
The whole live free or die thing never seemed to connect with the all so proper and law abiding British mind. But to a yank who never thought that laws were really meant for him...

Yes, back in that dim and distant time you needed a license, which I refused to pay for. But I finagled the television all the same. It was almost like buying drugs - an untaxed television. You picked it up out of the back of an unmarked lorry in an alley and hauled it home under a blanket. I recall being shocked when I plugged it in, adjusted the rabbit ears and it worked. I wouldn't have to hunt down the bootleg TV guy and beat him within an inch of his life. (that was my mindset back then) So much for the trip down memory lane.

It turns out that in our modern age, you still NEED A LICENSE to have a television in the UK.  But Boris Johnson is trying to put an end to it. (more here). The BBC used the government-collected the tax to fund its operations, which is why BBC2 (in my era) had programming that nobody would want to watch. BBC1 was bad enough. There was a third channel, ITV, as I recall, and they showed American TV shows of the era including Kojak. 

Monday Madness

More Thoughts on COVID-19

As I have pointed out, I am not a medical expert or a virologist. I could be considered to be a "China expert" in some circles, but I would dispute that claim as well. However, I have spent considerable time in China and have managed many international organized crime activities conducted by Chinese nationals. So make of those credentials what you will. 

This blog (and I) have maintained that COVID-19 (Wuhan Coronavirus) showed all of the earmarks of what one would expect to find in an engineered/weaponized virus of this class. I'm not saying that it was a fully developed weapon, but I am suggesting that the release was accidental, and would be VERY embarrassing to the PRC leadership, which would have to answer to the entire world. Not only their own people.
Sunday morning, Senator Tom Cotton (R-AK) said “They (The PRC) also claimed, for almost two months until earlier this week, that it originated in a seafood market in Wuhan,” Cotton said, referring to a study published by The Lancet. “That is not the case.”
The problem with this particular virus is that until the People's Liberation Army explain what their research team was doing, how they were doing it, and what they had found, the detective work will take quite some time. There is also the question of viral mutation as it infects such a large population. Nobody believes that the numbers coming out of China are accurate. Many of the deaths not counted are attributed to renal failure or pneumonia. 

Feel free to differ and take me to task. It's only an opinion but it's not 'just the flu' and the reaction of the Chinese to the situation has been telling. 

Do Some People Miss Obama

Yes, some people do - or did...

Barack wasn't shy about ordering drone strikes, but he left a few key people off the list. President Trump is fixing that.

What does the Bed that You Sleep On 
Say About You?

I Can Relate

Sunday, February 16, 2020


Recoil be Damned!

What does your Garage Say About You?

No, this isn't a photo of my garage, but it's not THAT far off either. The secret to a garage is tools and you simply can't have enough of them. About the time that you think that you don't need another one, you find something that you can't live without.

Not everyone has a garage. But that doesn't mean that you can't have tools of various types.  A firearm is a tool, for example. Even in nations where firearms are prohibited, you can have tools - like an axe. Or several axes.

This is a Sunday Sermonette

Do you sneak home with a new tool in a paper bag to hide it from the old ball and chain?

Do tool and firearms catalogues replace porn in your life?

Do you have fantasies of just buying a Snap-On truck?

Do you check ammo prices on-line to see if you can squeeze another penny a round out of your next purchase?

Do you have a project car in your garage that you haven't quite started on, but that you are buying parts for?

Do some drawers in your tool chest contain firearms components or magazines? 

Do you have special wet stones and leather strops to sharpen your knives and other edged tools? Do you sharpen your hunting arrowheads after each use/kill?

If you find yourself answering "yes" or if you would like to answer "yes", just stay here at Virtual Mirage and hang out. 

Political Sermonette


In politics, it's important to find balance and in order to do that, candidates need to leave the bubble of adoring fans. 

Bernie is a little different, because he's a hard core communist and huge admirer or the Soviet system - back when there was a Soviet Union. A lot of his followers would end up in the gulag for their troubles, but they don't understand that because all they want is free stuff, looted from somebody else (who they'd likely meet in the work camp when they arrive).

Biden, continuing his failed "No Malarky Tour", is trying to pick up the pieces while reminding everyone that he's the Democrat front-runner. I guess if you pay for the polls, you can be the front runner just like Hillary Clinton was.

Apparently he bought a lot of pie for seniors in New Hampshire in the hopes that he'd earn a vote. From the results, the opposite happened. There is a lesson in this. When you're a senile, old, creeper, don't rub elbows with your people. They'll vote for Amy Who? or the Butt Guy even though you bought the pie and coffee.

Bloomie and Hillary? Yes, Drudge let the cat out of the bag, poor Pierre (Mitt), denied a run at the  vice presidency. Maybe the sodomite, Pete, will pick him up? The only thing fun about that combination will be the dead pool on how long Mini-Mike will last before his fatal heart attack, or his unexplained suicide (no weapon found at the scene where he was shot in the head). You laugh, but it will make blogging a whole lot more interesting.

I'm expecting Elizabeth Warren to offer something unusual to Nevada in exchange for votes - possibly a rain dance or things along that line. She's offered everything for free already and not that many suckers are biting.

Amy Klobuchar reminds me of one of those nasty, vindictive great aunts, when I was a teenager. They are nice to your face at the family function and insist on kissing you and leaving lipstick on your cheek, but bad-mouth you to your back. "Who is that little strumpet he brought to dinner? You need to test him for a social disease!"

The Donkeys don't have much balance and none of them even claim to want to make America great. They just promise to raise taxes, do away with 32 oz soft drinks and kill all of the cows (Green New Deal), replacing butter with margarin. I can hear Amy's scolding voice now to the twelve year olds at a family gathering, "Eat your soy burger, you ungrateful little curs!"

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Ancient Antarctica Pyramids?

There are said to be pyramids on Antarctica. But they could also just be mountains (how disappointing if true?).

The theory is up there with the hollow Earth, flat Earth, and a lot of Ancient Alien theories. Some also say that it's not a pyramid at all, but a snow covered mountain on Antarctica. But what fun would that be?

Enter the Piri Reis Map, made in 1513 by the Ottoman admiral/cartographer Piri Reis. Some of the map has been destroyed but the portion that remains clearly shows the Western coast of Europe and North America in addition to Brazil with impressive (for the time) accuracy. There are also a variety of detailedly represented islands depicted on the map. Reis claimed that the map was based on ten Arab sources and four Indian maps sourced from the Portuguese. 

Accuracy is not the most interesting feature. The map depicts the Antarctic coast far before it was "discovered" by Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev on January 27th 1820. 

Was Antarctica explored and possibly even settled by humans in a time now obscured by time?

Piri Reis Map

Researchers and investigators have determined that Antarctica has been covered by ice for the past 34 million years, and speculate that the only way that mankind could have built pyramids in the intervening time is if they were assisted by space aliens or space aliens did it without help from humans... so there you have it. Aliens...again.

Ancient Global Warming & More

It's Settled Science

Man-caused global warming has been shown to have begun as early as 1200 BC. In this article (link) scientists discuss how the city of Heracleion was once above water.
The lost city of Heracleion (Egyptian and Greek) was city that existed before the foundation of Alexandria in 331 BC. The city saw its golden days as it served as the main port of entry to Egypt for all ships arriving from the Greek world.
Some are concerned that the beachfront home of Barack and Michelle Obama at Martha's Vineyard will suffer the same fate as the oceans rise due to global warming.

Disregard the Similarities

Daily Timewaster

Sometimes what CW posts, resonates.

Fast Food Adventure

A Trip to Whataburger

So there I was in Mesa, Arizona, yesterday, and I drove past a Whataburger location at lunchtime. I reflected on Fredd's comments on this blog some time past and thought I'd test something. So I parked and walked in. There was a pimple-faced youth at the counter, waiting for my order. 

I said, "Fredd sent me." He looked perplexed. 

I explained, "Fredd sent me and I guess that means that I get a discount. I'd like a #1 combo (burger, medium fries and a diet coke)."

"I can give you a senior citizen discount, sir." 

I saw immediately that he must have had me confused with an old person. "I'm sure you know Fredd, he's eaten his share of Whataburgers and I'm riding his coattails. I would think that you can give me a larger than senior citizen discount for that reason alone."

I didn't get the discount that I was after and I put a buck in the tip jar before I left.

It's obvious that Fredd's legend doesn't extend much beyond Texas.

Recommendations for Australia (nobody asked for them)

The map, left is marked for comedic effect to compare it to American states in climate. Some say that it's generally accurate.

All the coastal regions that aren’t desert meets ocean are used for agriculture and mining so between the lack of land that can be built on and the land needed for other purposes Australia finds itself without a lot of commercially useful land.

Aussies will proudly point out that they produced 22 million tons of wheat, 2.1 million tons of beef and 0.5 million tons of carrots last year. Australia is also rich in mineral wealth and mining is big business for Australian companies both in Australia and elsewhere. But as we are now learning, most of its raw materials have gone to China and with the outbreak of the plague (2019-n-CoV, or Wuhan Virus), exports are off and the currency is taking a serious beating. Australia has tied itself to China in a way that has proved to be unhealthy. Instead of embracing industrialization as an ALTERNATIVE to China, it's gone another way.

Australia doesn't have to be an isolated spot on the planet, struggling to export goods and being forced to import because its capacity for production is currently challenged. 

Enterprise zones may be the answer, but the real solution is a change of culture, and love of capitalism - and a reduction in socialism and the trend toward income redistribution.  You can't have wealth creation in a a meaningful way while trying to create socialist environment. 

If everyone is entitled to the labors of others, the others will either move or will not be motivated to do the work that is necessary to pull Australia out of its current (dismal) situation.

Friday, February 14, 2020

Buttigieg and US Intelligence

It doesn't really matter how you feel about the mayor of South Bend, Indiana. The question is what sort of relationship he's had with US Intelligence Agencies and to what extent it counts in the current primary season.

Alex from offers this perspective on Mayor Pete's background.

Having rubbed shoulders with elements of various alphabet agencies all of my adult life, and that extends to my immediate family - my children primarily, I may be able to offer some insight. The kids grew up around SEALs, spies, some few recruited assets, mercenaries and so forth. They know the difference between an 'agent' and a 'case officer', and it's useful to make that distinction because calling Mayor Pete (Butt Guy) Buttigieg an "asset", is to call him an "agent", and he clearly isn't. There are specific legal requirements for an agent, or asset to be that. Lest you want to quibble, those are important requirements. 

Based on my best guess, I suspect that during his service in the US Navy as a reserve intelligence officer (deployed) that he rubbed shoulders with employees of various intelligence services of the US Government. It would be surprising if he didn't. He's a personable guy, and we know that he likes guys - a lot, and he's outwardly charming enough to become a politician. One may argue the extent to which he has been successful, but he's currently leading the Democrat Party's field in terms of delegates to the national convention. Many including me believe that he will fade, but that's where he is now.

In the off chance that Mayor Pete will become President Buttigieg and his darling husband will become first man, various and sundry people he's met in his journey through the Byzantine world of American intelligence, have endorsed him. They all have a motive in doing do. There is no down-side for them, and a considerable up-side if he wins. 

I guarantee you that corrupt, sleepy, creepy, old, Slow Joe Biden knows a lot more people in the intelligence community than Mayor Pete does, having been a senator for 200 years and vice president for 8. Did that propel him beyond fifth place in the New Hampshire Primary? Not hardly.

So what does Pete's rubbing shoulders with people he worked with as a deployed reserve naval intelligence officer have to do with his candidacy? Nothing significant. If he becomes president, he may end up rewarding people who endorsed him (as they would hope) by giving them better positions in government. That's sort of how the patronage game works.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

A Rally

A Democrat Attends a Trump Rally

I've attended a Trump Rally. That's what they're like. It's sort of a love fest between fellow conservatives. Read this account. It's telling.
(Link) "I started to question everything. How many stories had I been sold that weren’t true? What if my perception of the other side is wrong? How is it possible that half the country is overtly racist? Is it possible that Trump derangement syndrome is a real thing, and had I been suffering from it for the past three years?"
"Once we got inside, the atmosphere was jubilant. It was more like attending a rock concert than a political rally. People were genuinely enjoying themselves. Some were even dancing to music being played over the loudspeakers. It was so different than any other political event I had ever attended. Even the energy around Barack Obama in 2008 didn’t feel like this."

Worms - Part of the Blame Game

Got Worms?

(link) This rambling piece in The Atlantic might interest you. Then again it might not. Are earthworms partially to blame for global warming? The article hints that they may be part of the problem - if there is a problem - but since it's settled science, I'm sure there's a problem. Unless the climate gets colder and then global warming has to do with climate change, which can be fixed by massive taxation and income redistribution. No the article doesn't go that far - except by implication. And earthworms are partly to blame for whatever.

Sometimes it's easier to just look at a rock and let your own scientific brain figure things out.

But that doesn't mean that earthworms are not to blame.

You can also blame President Trump. And that is settled science.

Political Observations

Jimmy Kimmel said, “You know, a month ago, if somebody had told me Amy Klobuchar was going to do better in New Hampshire than Joe Biden, that person would have been Amy Klobuchar — it wouldn’t have been anybody else.”

File it under Race to the Bottom: Yang dropped out of the political race for the presidency, but nobody is claiming his poor showing in New Hampshire and Iowa is racist. Then again, they aren't saying that Warren, who may have a smattering of Native American blood was rejected based on race alone. She is a communist but not as good of a communist as Bernie and apparently there can only be one commie survive to the Donkey Convention. Joe Biden fled to South Carolina, blaming his race (white) on his poor showing in New Hampshire. Riddle me that one.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020


2019-nCoV (Wuhan Viral Epidemic)

Even as China's President Xi has declared that all cause for alarm relating to the corona virus outbreak, referred to as 2019-nCoV, has passed, the us Military has set up 11 quarantine camps on military bases near major airports across the US in anticipation of an influx of American citizens returning from China as listed below:

--Hickam, Hawaii - by Daniel K Inouye International Airport (HNL)
--Great Lakes Training Center Navy Base, Illinois - by O'Hare International Airport (ORD)
--Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base, Texas - by Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW)
--March ARB, California - by Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
--Travis AFB, California - by San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
--Dobbins ARB, Georgia - by Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL)
--Fort Hamilton, New York - by John F Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York City
--Naval Base Kitsap, Washington - by Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA)
--Joint Base Anacostia, Washington DC - by Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD)
--Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey - by Newark International Airport (EWR)
--Fort Custer Training Center, Michigan - by Detroit Metropolitan Airport (DTW)

Nothing to see here, move on.

While Dr. Richard Ebright refuted several of conspiracy theories regarding the Wuhan Institute of Virology, he told BBC China that this did not represent the possibility of the virus being "ruled out" from entering the population due to a laboratory accident. 

There has been a lot of pushback from China regarding the innocent nature of research that is conducted at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, located at the epicenter of the outbreak. Old China hands will tell you that for every innocent research project conducted there, you can expect the government to be funding a military project. That is simply how it's done in China. The Washington Post wrote an article discussing all of the innocent research that is being done at WIV, debunking any accidental release of a weaponized virus. When WaPo (known for being propaganda outlet) proclaims innocence, you need to think twice.


What if we Lost GPS?

The electrical power has been off at the White Wolf Mine all day, and the generator is making up for the faltering grid. But what would happen if things got frostier? What if we lost GPS?

The Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has estimated in one study that “a hypothetical disruption to the Global Positioning System could result in $30 billion to $45 billion in economic losses over a 30-day period.”
(Reuters) President Trump signed an executive order today, directing U.S. agencies to test the vulnerabilities of critical infrastructure systems in the event of a disruption or manipulation of satellite-based global positioning system services (GPS). 
GPS is key to the functioning of electrical power grids, weather forecasting, traffic signals, smartphone applications, financial services and vehicle navigation, among a host of other systems. 
The order, directing federal agencies to develop a plan to test infrastructure systems within one year, said “disruption or manipulation of these services has the potential to adversely affect the national and economic security of the United States.”
The U.S. Transportation Department plans to recommend a backup GPS system (using fiberoptic cable) by the end of the year, officials said. Testing of 11 technologies in Massachusetts and Virginia will be completed by May.

Trump NH Victory, etc.

President Trump enjoyed unprecedented success in yesterday's New Hampshire Primary.

Incumbent voter turnout is a good indicator of where it's headed in the general election. These numbers are likely spurred by the impeachment hoax and voter anger. They indicate a landslide in New Hampshire in November. The same was true with Iowa.

Hump Day Commentary

The Donkeys

Corrupt, old, senile, Slow Joe Biden keeps asserting that he's the donkey in the lead, even though he received just over 8% of the voting in the New Hampshire Primary, and that's no malarky. He fled to South Carolina rather than remain and take the hit and thank his people at a party to honor their hard work. Class act, Joe. 

Dead campaign walking
Finishing fifth in New Hampshire should tell the senile old white man something, when people picked the Butt Guy and Klobuchar over him.

Joe, those are black checkers, not Oreos. Don't eat them. Go back to the home. Today they're serving vanilla pudding for the afternoon snack.

Poke-a-haunt-us Warren was clobbered too. Liz, Bernie is a better communist. Face it, accept it, and slink back to Massachusetts. 

Then there is the Butt Guy and his supporters. (left)

The results are very thin, donkeys. Very thin. Maybe Bloomberg is the right candidate for a party that hates old, white, billionaire, males. Bloomie checks every box. He's hoping that he can buy the vote. And maybe he can.

All in all, last night was a pretty good night for President Trump - MAGA/KAG.

Amy Who?, the Butt Guy and Bloomie will fight it out with the Bernie bros for the heart and soul of the Democrat Party. And you know that the DNC will cheat Bernie out of his shot at the nomination one more time.

It was kabuki theater of high art and order last night. Most entertaining.

USS Tucson, SSN 770 

...sends its best from Hawaii to Virtual Mirage. Which is good news, because I'm headed there soon. 

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

How Juicy Can it Get?

Juicy Smollett has been Re-Indicted

Nigerian brothers Abel and Ola Osundairo were identified 
as the (white) people he'd said attacked him. The pair knew 
Smollett and told the authorities he paid them to attack 
him in a staged incident to allegedly boost his celebrity profile 
and salary.
(link) The race baiting D-List actor may be looking at some serious time on this go-round, but it's Chicago. A year ago, you'll recall that Juicy was charged with a sixteen count indictment with over fifty years of criminal exposure when Illinois State Attorney Kim Foxxx dropped the charges, announcing that she'd received enough cash under the table and that convinced her that Juicy had suffered enough. 

Juicy runs in the right Chicago circles with the Reverend Jessie Jackson, the Obamas, Oprah and other luminaries. Apparently that sort of 'juice' wasn't sufficient for Juicy. It's always better if you're black if you can say that two white Trump supporters beat you within an inch of your life. When it comes out that it was nothing but a hoax (much like the impeachment hoax and the Russia hoax), what can you do except to funnel funds to somebody like Foxxx? Of course Foxxx asserts that she only wanted what was best for young Juicy. There is more than one way of looking at all of this. That must be what the investigation team that brought the matter to an Illinois Grand Jury was thinking.

Will Juicy outrun the law again this time?

Twofer Tuesday

Devout Mohammedan Congress person Ilhan Omar, a member of "the squad" has been officially accused of appropriating Alabama's culture by marrying her brother.

She countered that while it's true that she did marry her brother,  Ahmed Nur Said Elmi, it was only a marriage of convenience and that his heart always belonged to his goat, Jasmine. While many can understand a preference to a she-goat over Ilhan Omar, the matter of culturally appropriating an Alabama custom remains and may be an issue in her coming bid for re-election this November.

If 'taco Tuesday' (which happens to be today) is cultural appropriation of Mexico, how much more serious is the Omar matter?

USN Blues

The US Navy has had a lot of black eyes recently, and they've all been self-inflicted. After a number of critical blunders, USS Gerald Ford, CVN-78, is now expected to deploy in 2024, rather than 2020, and the cost over-runs are being absorbed by the funding earmarked for USS John F. Kennedy CVN 79, USS Enterprise CVN 80 and USS Doris Miller CVN 81. As of this writing, I am not convinced that CVN 81 will ever be built.

The Littoral Combat Ship (LCS, which also stands for Little Crappy Ship) program is a complete abortion but we keep building them, only to scrap them once they're complete.

DDG 1000 - floating lemon
The DDG 1000 series won't ever be front line ships despite the billions spent.

And the Navy (in its wisdom) has slowed construction of the Arleigh Burke DDG 51 series of destroyers.

The FFG(X) and CG(X) are as far in the distant future as the new Navy bomber to replace the Intruder, now long out of service.

Disastrous collisions at sea have revealed serious problems with the navy.

Admirals working hard (overtime) trying to cashier SEALs, contrary to the explicit directions of the Commander-in-Chief have not made points.

The current budget proposed by President Trump reduces the money earmarked for the US Navy and the admirals are wounded.  But the truth is that the Navy isn't doing a very good job. Sealift capability is marginal at best. The Navy needs to search its soul and perhaps reduce the number of admirals by half as a show of good faith.

As a retired naval officer, I don't like to write this sort of thing, but it's true.

Monday, February 10, 2020

Slow Joe's Long March

When I watch the Biden rallies in New Hampshire, I can't help but contrast them to the political rallies that President Trump has. Biden manages fifty or sixty people, among whom are union members (paid to be there) carrying signs showing that they represent firefighters or SEIU.

President Trump's rallies fill stadiums with adoring voters with thousands of people who couldn't be stuffed in, watching the program on large screen televisions.  And yet the pollsters predict that in a head to head match up, Biden would beat President Trump. It sounds like wishful thinking on the part of progressives.

And Creepy, corrupt, senile old Slow Joe Biden is now predicting that he will do better in New Hampshire than predicted. "He's surging," his campaign staff are confidently telling the sleezy, sly, smug, lying mainstream media reporters. "The Butt Guy isn't taking all of his support," the staffers assure the talking heads on CNN. They remind CNN that the Butt Guy, mayor of a mid-size Indiana town, couldn't win a statewide race in Indiana. "There's no way he can beat the twenty time senator from Delaware and twice Vice President of the United States." 

Yet I watch those staffers wince when Slow Joe calls women who show up at his rallies, "lying dog face pony soldiers," when they ask questions that he doesn't want to answer. Nobody really knows where Slow Joe (no Malarky) came up with that, but it plays well on Fox News.

"We'll be there at the convention," Joe assures his small band of supporters, as his money has all but dried up. 

The problem with Joe is that it may not be mere senility that we see. He's consistent in saying weird, off-the-cuff things. His political career had all but ended after two failed runs at the Presidency when Barack scooped him up out of Delaware to be the vice president. 

Many considered Biden to be Obama's hedge against assassination. Who would kill Barack if Slow Joe was designated to take his place? Thus Biden, the court jester had value to Obama.

And Barack didn't endorse Joe to be president, likely because of eight long years having to put up with him. It's tough to blame Barack for his decision.

So here's Biden, striving to tie Amy (Amy Who?) Klobuchar in the Democrat primaries. 

There are others who are happy to see Biden spending Democrat donor money in his failed bid. It means that there's less available for the communists who oppose him.