Friday, July 25, 2008

What Did We Expect?

From Reason:

Last month the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the District of Columbia had violated the Second Amendment by making armed self-defense in the home impractical and banning the most popular weapons used for that purpose. Last week the D.C. Council responded by unanimously approving a law that makes armed self-defense in the home impractical and bans the most popular weapons used for that purpose.

Yeah, that's about it!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

For Immediate Release

The Ministry of Tourism of the Republic of Turonistan is proud to announce that the One-Thousandth Visitor to Turonistan has recently been welcomed.

The lucky winner will receive a free Carp-Pedicure at the Bishkek Spa and Resort.


Turk Turon, Minister of Tourism
17, Oloryannaya
Bishkek, Turonistan

Nervy Perv Sues Amex

Thanks to Arms and the Law we have this story from the New York Post:
1) Lawyer is accused of sex with three underaged girls
2) Flees to Canada in 2006
3) Canadians track him using his Amex activity and arrest him; he serves 19 months
4) Now out of jail, he sues Amex for $5 million for violating their confidentiality agreement.I just love the headline: "Nervy Perv"
Only the NYP!

Anarchists' Gathering Surprisingly Organized

I swear to God, that's the headline in the Idaho Statesman!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Le Fabuleux Destin d' Amelie Poulain

See, one day she finds this old box which has been hidden in her apartment for thirty or forty years, and it sends her off on a mission to find the owner and return the box.Along the way, she counts orgasms: "Fifteen!" But they're other peoples', not hers.
She is desperately trying to get the attention of this guy who comes into the restaurant where she works.And then one day it all falls into place and she knows exactly what she has to do.
Have you ever seen such a look of Perfect Bliss on anyone's face?

I'm getting verklempt again!

Pedicures By Carp

I don't know what the excitement is all about; we've been doing this in Turonistan for years.

Ouch! Ouch! Ouch!

Tracy gets hot brass down her shirt.

Nobody hurt, and she finished the stage. Way to go!

Warning: Pun Ahead!

Hot brass and hot bras don't mix!

[Puppies? What?]

Sunday, July 20, 2008

A Bad, Bad Man

The boys and I saw Batman last night. Heath Ledger plays the villain, The Joker. This is a world-class nasty dude. He is just a wildly over-the-top, scary, chilling and spellbinding villain. Remember Drexel, the crazy white Rasta pimp in True Romance? ("Hey, Marty! This ain't whiteboy day, is it?") Well, this Joker is in that league. He just steals every scene he's in, as a good villain should.

By a coincidence, Gary Oldman, the actor who played Drexel, also appears in Batman, but this time he's the Police Commissioner.

Salmon Dave

This recipe is named after the famous R&B duo of the 60's and 70's.
Briefly, it is a big, honkin' salmon fillet seasoned with lemon and lime zest:And grilled on a plank of fragrant cedar. Um-num-num!
Beware the man who owns only one citrus zester; he may know how to use it.

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

I got this link from Sebastian.

Am I the last person on Earth to hear about this?

My favorite line: "Hey, dude, ConflictDiamond told me you were dating BaitNSwitch."

Tell your friends!

Self-Replicating Mechanisms

I followed some links down the rabbit hole until I came to this.


International Gun Control

Thanks to Arms and the Law, we have this commentary on a recent NYT article on international gun control:

Readers will no doubt react differently to the tone of the story; for my part, I thought it rather too involved in a particular narrative about the heroic efforts of the UN and global civil society activists to overcome the demonic and ignorant efforts of the NRA, which pulls the strings of the US government, to end the flow of small arms and light weapons into the hands of child soldiers in conflicts worldwide.

"Oh, raw-thur!"
That's putting it mildly!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Let Geeking Be Unrestrained!

I just got this box in the mail. It's packed like the Crown Jewels or the Maltese Falcon or somethin':It's a handmade telegraph key from Jerry Pittenger:
Gaze upon its beauty! Ball-bearing pivots! Two pounds! Way, way shiny!
And here it is all dressed up:
Now, as impressive as this is, Roberta X has built a straight key, not out of brass bar-stock, but out of square brass tubing! I s**t you not! It's hollow.

Something tells me that for an encore, she may someday make one with the contacts hidden INSIDE the tubing. Just a guess.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Three Hundred Rounds Downrange Today

A mixture of 9mm, 10mm, 38 Super, 38 Special, 7.65mm and 30 Carbine.

A splendid time was had at the NRA range in Fairfax County.

A lot of women shooters there, of all ages, as usual. Maybe a third of the shooters were female. In the booth next to me a woman was firing an AR-15 for the first time.

And as I was leaving a class of young women appeared to be gathering at the counter.

Good news for the Second Amendment!

[Edit: And you know what else? The Witness fired faultlessly in 10mm and 38 Super. On the other hand, I got a lot of practice in "tap-rack-bang" with the 30 Carbine. Anybody have advice on a source of reliable magazines for this gun?]

Dr. Guns - Advice for the Gunlorn

A new column (one hopes) in

The Washington Post!?!?

by Stephen Hunter, everyone's favorite gun novelist (or should be).

Violation of Rule Three in the illustration (above).

P.S. Stephen Hunter has written some wonderful novels, but his day job is movie reviewer for the WaPo.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

It's Linktastic!

Squeaky Wheel Blog can mean only one thing: our Memphis sistah!

D.C. Police Turn Away Dick Heller on First Day of Gun Registration

The story is in the WaPo, although their lede is "ho-hum. Very little interest."

We'll see about that.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Numero Uno!

Andy in Taiwan also spotted "rubesoisie" but he notes that only one other blogger beat them on this. And that blogger would be ...?
Check the URL at the bottom of the image.

And, yes, I was listening to "Raised On Robbery" by Joni Mitchell when I snapped it. And it was LOUD. Very loud. My furniture was vibrating across the room like one of those old "NFL Football" games.

[edit: T-shirt idea - "Proud member of the rubesoisie!"]

Too Much Photoshop

Neologism Alert!

It's "rubesoisie".

As in, "The cover [of the New Yorker] says as much about the political influence of Manhattan as it does about the prejudice of the rubesoisie."

From The Wapo.

Apparently, if you live in flyover country, you're a member of the rubesoisie.

Friday, July 11, 2008

First CW QSO in Years!

And I was pathetic!

I wobbled along at about 10 WPM, talking to AA9MU in Angola, Indiana. He was zipping along at over 20 WPM and I was lucky just to catch his name.
Well, he's gonna get a QSL card for his trouble, anyway.

This was at 7.034 mHz.

(Does anybody besides me still resent having to change from megacycles to megahertz? That happened back in the 1960s, but I am still steamed about it.)

My morse keyer was an old computer mouse made by Compaq. I thought it might be an interesting keyer for the Yaesu, but although it seemed promising at the time, it really isn't very ergonomic. I use the Yaesu keyer, so the pulse timing, at least, is consistent.

Helpin' Her Move UP

We're all trying to help Breda move up in her Google ranking.
There really is no reason why Breda should not have the highest Google-ranking for Breda.
Breda is her own name, after all.

Wi-Fi Radio

This is pretty cool. I may have to get one of these.

Four models reviewed by AP, via Yahoo News*.

With really cool pix of old radios!

*Link broken. Rats!

Edit: now THIS is something that Blackberry should put into their little gadget: Wi-Fi radio.

Dinner, Everyone?

If you're a member of The Gang Of Ten [edit: "The Ten Ring"?], and you're driving to Blackwater for the Gunbloggers' Class August 22-24, and you're passing thru D.C., I'd like to buy you dinner.

Either on your way TO Blackwater or on your way home; or both!

Any takers?

Oh! We'll avoid D.C.

There are some nice restaurants in Northern Virginia. Although Virginia does have this quirky law about carrying in restaurants that serve alcohol: no concealed carry - you must open carry and you can't drink.

Can I tempt anyone?

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Nevada ACLU Breaks Ranks with National ACLU

On the Second Amendment.

Via Say Uncle.

Radio News

I have set up the ham radio station in the basement. This involved moving the copper ground buss down there, lengthening the coax to the antenna (a crappy little "apartment-dweller's" special, but whatcha gonna do? The big tree died last year and it's gone, and with it, my sky-hook) and grounding all the equipment. Downloaded Dimension 4 (for precision time-synchronization) and HRD and got that working on the PC along with the interface box to the Yaesu transceiver. And then I listened to W1AW to brush up on my code practice. I'm pathetically slow; need practice. Thank God for context; if they sent random groups I'd be lost!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Why Are So Many Women Wearing Chartreuse?

Chartreuse the color, I mean, not the liqueur.

I have seen more women wearing this color this summer than I can remember.

It's kind of a hot, day-glow green.

Our executive producer was wearing it last weekend.

But today I saw a woman wearing it... I don't take pictures of strangers on the street, but I just had to.

What IS it about chartreuse?

Driver Busted for DWI at 0.0 BAC

The Agitator has the story. Apparently the arresting officer was getting even with the driver's husband, a prominent DWI defense attorney who had just beaten the officer in court, and was in the passenger seat at the time of the arrest.

One commentator expressed my sentiments exactly:

I am rapidly losing all faith in *all* government services, because if the people and organizations that citizens have to go to for protection from corrupt people are full of corrupt people themselves, as we keep seeing, then there really is no hope.

h/t Volokh Conspiracy.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Wonderful Comment

There is a fantastic comment in the WaPo today in an article about (duh!) the dangers of keeping a gun in the house:

>As for shooting a burglar, first, you're assuming that because someone breaks into your house, regardless of what happens after that, they deserve to die?

No. When I was 12 years old, my family, living in Ohio at the time, was the victim of a home invasion robbery. My father, who was smoking a cigarette in our unlit garage, got to watch as two men pushed a car backwards up our driveway in the dark, and proceed to try to crowbar their way into one of our windows. He went inside and retrieved a .22 caliber pistol from the basement, sent us all into the attic, called the police, then turned on all the lights in the house and brandished the firearm at the two men, telling them he would shoot them if they did not leave. I have talked to my father quite a bit about that moment, pondering it now as a grown man, what that was like: staring at two men who could have easily beaten him to death, one with a crowbar, watching them ponder their chances, then watching one walk to their car silently while the other circled around the house. I really hope that if the time ever comes, I can measure up to the actions of my father.

My father never fired a shot. When the police arrived, and the police report was filed, no shooting was on record, and what happened to us never made it into a single gun statistic. I remember this incident because it was formative for me. When I hear people say that the only purpose of a gun is to shoot an attacker, I smile. When they tell me gun statistics compiled from self-defense shootings are accurate, I smile. I smile because I have a ring-activated Tarnhelm smart gun behind a fingerprint activated safe in my house, available to me inside of five seconds, but never available to a child, an intruder, or a robber. I smile because I know that the people who wish to ban guns are advocating a different path for my life: beaten to death in my house at twelve years of age with a crowbar. I smile and I remember.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Turk's New Avatar

The old avatar was a B/W snapshot of Jack Miller, of the Supreme Court case of the same name.

Now that Heller has supplanted Miller, I needed a new avatar, so I selected a "Simpsonized" caricature created by

The ACLU and Heller

I blogged about this four days ago.

The ACLU, having adopted a neutral stance on the Second Amendment for many years, has suddenly changed course and now opposes the Second Amendment.

This, to my knowledge, is the first time in its history that the ACLU has ever opposed an Article of the Bill of Rights.

The comments section on ACLU blog stops last night at 10:18 PM, by which time 668 comments had been left.

Joe Huffman gives the score as 2 in favor, one neutral, and 665 opposed.

But no new comments have been posted in the last sixteen hours.

Edit: the comments are rolling in again, over 700 now, and this one's a pip:

"there wouldn't be a first amendment without a second amendment"

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Thursday, July 3, 2008

NYT Article Neutral on Gun Control

Well, that in itself makes it noteworthy.

"Does Gun Control Work? Maybe Not," says the New York Times.

A Joke

From the comments section of KdT:

This ordinary guy is on a cruise ship that gets gets destroyed by a massive tropical storm, he washes up on deserted tropical isle with the one other survivor, Christie Brinkley. At first they are both too traumatized by the loss of their loved ones and busy seeing to the demands of survival, but eventually they begin to have have torrid, physical encounters nearly constantly and it’s everything the guy ever dreamt it would be. One day the guy is sullen and joyless, Christie asks him what’s wrong, he tells her she wouldn’t understand - it’s a man thing. She begs him to tell her, reminding him that she has never refused him anything and that they are each other's world. He says “Okay, please wear this for me.” He hands her a salvaged man’s suit and hat and asks her to put it on. “Stand right here please, I’ll be right back.” He runs away from her, and keeps running all the way around the island until he comes up behind her dressed up as a man. He walks up to her and taps her on the shoulder and says “Hey buddy, do you know I’m nailing Christie Brinkley?”

Somos el ejército nacional. Ustedes están libre.

"We are the national army. You are free."

Incredible story of the rescue of the Colombian hostages.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Don't Mess With Librarians!

A lawyer and a librarian got into a legal tussle over the librarian's blog.

The judge ruled for the librarian.


The lawyer has been referred to the Bar Association's professional ethics committee. He is in a hellstorm of bother.

The lesson is clear: don't mess with librarians!

Just. Don't. Mess. With. Them.

On The Volokh Conspiracy.

Causation or Correlation?

The Volokh Conspiracy has a fascinating comment on gun-control studies in the medical literature.

Apparently yet another of these "causation or correlation" studies has been released. The authors claim that keeping a gun in the house increases the risk of suicide and homicide. Although these authors flat-out admit that they do not have any data on whether the fatal firearm is the same one that was kept in the victim's home (Kellermann NEJM '93 tried to deflect questions on that subject), even though they (like Kellermann) interviewed the family members.

One of the commenters, "30yearProf", had this to say.


QUOTE: Second, the gun in the home may not have been the gun used in the death.

Incredible! They interviewed the family members! They could have easily found this out by asking the very people they interviewed (who would know). After all, the implication sought from ALL these pseudo-scientific "studies" is that YOUR gun will hurt YOU. Here, they had the chance to ask whether or not it was YOUR gun that "caused" YOUR death and they failed to ask. Logically, that raises a strong suspicion that they did not ask because the researchers either knew or strongly suspected that the answer would not support their desired result.
Clever boy! What an interesting observation.

Correction: It seems that these researchers didn't actually interview any of the victims' families. Instead, they used eleven-year-old data from a CDC study, so they know even less about the victims' risk factors: arrest records, alcohol abuse, illicit drug use, violence, etc. At least Kellermann did conduct proxy interviews, but he failed to ask the crucial question: "Was the victim shot with his own gun?" And the comment by "30yearProf" applies to Kellermann's 1993 study (and probably others, too.). The present study, by Dahlberg et al, is even more deficient than that. And, of course, confuses causation and correlation. That hasn't changed.

The Fat Lady Has Sung!!

Over on ACLUblog, commenter John Frederickson says,

If the ACLU wants to maintain its credibility as the defender of the bill of rights then it must endorse the 2nd amendment as an individual right, and not maintain its pathetic stance claiming it disagrees with the SCOTUS. The fat lady has sung. Get with the program.
Effin' A, John!!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Woman's Diary Returned After 70 Years

And it's full of really hot stuff! Reads like Anais Nin, but it's real.

From ABC News.