Tuesday, December 06, 2016

The Recount Chaos Stumbles In Michigan's Blue Zones.

Funnily enough there seem to be a number of severe irregularities in Michigan's highly Blue areas - Detroit, Flint and Lansing that may prevent a lot of ballots being recounted due to "problems".

Problems like Poll Books not matching the number of ballots cast. I.E. an indication of a high potential for ballot stuffing with more ballots than those that were shown to be issued by the books. Problems like a hole in a "sealed" ballot box in Lansing. Par for the course in these areas.

The Detroit News: Half of Detroit votes may be ineligible for recount

Funny how these irregularities crop up so regularly in Democrat strongholds - the very same ones that handily delay getting their totals in until late in the game so they can "adjust" as needed, eh?

Whether Stein's game is to delay the confirmation of Michigan's totals as to put the state's 16 electoral votes in jeopardy, or just done to threaten Trump's legitimacy at the outset, or whether this is just a fundraising stunt is open to question. Even if the recount doubles Stein's votes received she and the Greens would go from all of 1% to 2% - which just won't carry the state for her.

Either way the State and people of Michigan are going to bear a large amount of the cost for her tilting at windmills, but the Left does so enjoy spending other people's money.

Monday, December 05, 2016

The Movie That Would Have Kicked Off Clinton's Gun Control Push Is Released With A Whimper

There's a movie trailer popping up on Facebook and getting an awful lot of play for a movie now being only released to select theaters but is no longer relevant after flopping on its opening weekend US release making all of $59,797 which is one helluva flop by any description. It looks like the producers were banking on Hillary Clinton to have won the election and release this with a bang. Had Hillary Clinton actually won the election the release timing would have been dead on, but now it seems to be dead on arrival.

Miss Sloan, a not even thinly veiled portrayal of "Nasty Woman Takes On The Gun Lobby Troglodytes To Get More Gun Control In America" is every but the hit piece you think it would be. Yes, the words "Nasty Woman" even flash by in the trailer and the whole thing was pretty clearly produced to help a push for gun control on the assumption that Hillary Clinton would have won the election.

Unsurprisingly, the Facebook based trailer leads off with the false statement that "Any nutcase can buy an assault rifle at the Bowlarama without an ID", and it goes downhill from there.

If you think it's a coincidence that Miss Sloan was timed to be released now and its trailer features a fearless female lobbyist taking on the "gun lobby" with a catchphrase of "Nasty Woman", think again.

This was pretty clearly designed to be released under the assumption that Hillary would be elected and free to push for more gun control.

As a result, this political emotive hit piece of gun control propaganda masquerading as a movie is now only being "released to selected theaters". In other words, it's a propaganda piece that lost the leader it was written for and will likely fade out as a result, which is a darn good thing. On the upside for the film it's about to be released in France and will likely do well there amongst the chattering classes and perhaps will even bust its US opening weekend gross of $59,797.

Such a pity they just don't get that Americans really aren't interested in gun control hit pieces to aid a political candidate masquerading as a movie.

Undoubtedly, there would have been a full court press for gun bans had Hillary been elected with the media, entertainment industry, and the Clinton administration relentlessly pushing for it and we've dodged that particular scenario.

Sunday, December 04, 2016

A Bright Idea - A Pack Of Lights

As days get shorter, dog walking gets colder and people drive even stupider it was time to get a better flashlight for walking the dog and other duties. The cheapy ones I was using were the multi tiny LED type with the 3 AAA battery insert and were only good for letting a car know you're there but not enough to actually see what you're doing. It was free, but still.

So on Black Friday I decided to take a chance and ordered from Amazon the Goldenguy 5 Pack Mini Cree Q5 LED Flashlight Torch 7w 350lm Adjustable Focus Zoomable Light (Black). For the price, which then was $13 and even now is still very good at $18 for a five pack of lights, I figured it would be worth the risk.

I was pleasantly surprised when I received them to find that every single one of them worked.

As an upgrade its impressive - 350 lumen and with a single AA battery its single rectangular Cree LED throws and impressive amount of light. Excellent visibility in the dark, the focussable light can be broadened into a round beam or tightened into the square focused ray of light to really punch through the darkness. The strobe function is pretty good to let cars with their highbeams on blinding you know that you're there and get their attention away from their cell phones.

The case is rather a heavy duty feeling aluminum and has the weapon-light style frame with push button on the rear and an rectangular instep on the tube for holding it in a fist for illumination, or punching with it should such a thing be needed and the bezel has a few sharp points for such a use.

For $2.60 (now $3.60) a light they're practically disposable for what used to cost twenty times that. I've replaced the crappy flashlight in my car, and the dog walking jacket, and now each member of the family also has a bright pocket-sized flashlight with impressive illumination to carry around.

Not a bad deal at all.

Saturday, December 03, 2016

Flying Lesson #92 - Recon of Diversionary Airfields

Lesson 92 started as KPTK was humming with Operation Good Cheer.

Operation Good Cheer is when volunteer pilots deliver gifts to children in need all across the state from KPTK.

To say the airport was bedlam would be an understatement. Not only were they rocking dual tower operation (which happens on busy days every so often), they had dual ground going which is the first time I've seen that.

I did a straight out departure to the West to get out of the craziness and headed off to Howell staying at 2,000 feet.

Since Howell tends to be one of the local group of examiners favorite diversion points on a check ride, Ray thought it would be useful to fly there. Since I've driven there already and flown out of there it was quite a comfortable spot. I found Howell ok as a result.

I did a downwind entry and a touch and go that went quite well and then we were off to Linden, another favorite diversion points and one that is a bit harder to find - forested, three nearby lakes and a displaced threshold and it really doesn't stand out amongst its surroundings. Found it and did a landing followed by a full stop taxi back as there really isn't enough runway there for a touch-and-go, or you may end doing a touch-a-tree, which is bad form. Kinda a cool airport there are houses on the field and you can park your plane in your attached hangar if you own a house there. Pretty sweet even if you do have Flint water. But, if you mix the water with 100 octane you'll get 100 low lead for your plane so it's not all bad.

Then back to KPTK where they had us cross the incoming flight path of another plane heading on final for 27R to shift to 27L on a very tight base, Ray took that landing as it was rather tight indeed and needed to be expedited and there was a plane still on 27L aswe were on very short final so it was not a typical approach.

Overall a pretty relaxing flight and the landings were not bad.

I think I'll stick with Flight 101 for solo flights (should I ever book one in weather decent enough for solo) and depending on weather head to Howell and Crosswinds for instruction for the most part (or try to find someone else that is closer) then get signed off by Flight 101 for a check-ride once I get the nagging issues resolved and try to get this thing finished off.

That's 1.1 and 3 landings.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

P30 At 1450 And Range Trip

A badly needed range trip took place yesterday.

My cousin Matt came in to visit this weekend and I took him to the range. He only has experience (quite extensive experience) with his duty pistol, with which he is quite good, so he was interested to try out a variety of pistols and I was happy to oblige.

Together we ran another 150 rounds through the P30, making it to 1450 with absolutely zero malfunctions of any kind to date. The feed ramp is now covered in black gunk but it keeps on going.

He rally enjoyed shooting my M&P 22 Compact with the Gemtech suppressor. Mirabile Dictu, Walmart had some .22LR CCI standard velocity in stock (3 round box maximum purchase). The M&P and Gemtech loved it and ran very very quietly with no issues and it was much more accurate than the Remington Thunderbolt and quieter as well.


He liked it quite a bit.

I also had quite a few other pistols for him to try: The Inglis Hi-Power, The S&W Model 29-2, The S&W M&P 9, The Glock 17, the Glock 21, the PA-63 and the 1911 and the Mauser HSC out to shoot.

Lots of ammo was turned into noise and many a steel target dropped only to be reset and dropped again.

Then back to the house for an epic cleaning of the guns (all save the P30) and then a good diner of Thanksgiving leftovers and a binge-watching of Game of Thrones.

A darn good time.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Teenager Day

Not only is today Thanksgiving but is also a momentous day for Abby.

Abby turned 13 today. Yes, my house now contains a teenager. It's amazing how time flies.

We had a surprise party for her yesterday. When she came home form shopping with Tash, she was surprised by her friends popping out from the kitchen yelling "Happy Birthday!".

Then we took all seven kids to Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them in 3D.

It's a darn fun movie and if you like the Harry Potter series, this one will fit right in as a prequel of sorts. Worth seeing and enjoying in 3D at the theater.

Then we came home and made homemade sushi (no raw fish though, just make your own rolls). The kids all enjoyed rolling their own dinner. Then dessert which was apple pie and ice cream.

After that, the kids had a sleepover in the family room and Abby woke up this morning to a Happy Birthday song and the traditional cherry cheesecake, and presents from her friends and family.

A great time was had by all.

Now we're cleaning up from the party and preparing for Thanksgiving.

May you all have a very happy Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

A Cold Jett Blast

With the temperature dropping, Jett decided to have a long playtime with Rocky.

As usual they had lots of fun chasing each other all over. Jett is still faster and more maneuverable, while Rocky is like a dump truck that waits for Jett to stop and then leaps at him.

They had a great time while Casey, Rocky's owner, and I chatted and caught up with things going on and watched them play while having an adult beverage and trying to stay warm.

We'll know it is officially winter here when the beers Casey and I are drinking as the dog plays actually start to ice up in the bottles (yes this does happen).

The kids were concerned that he was getting cold when he was done and back inside so they gave him a hat. Jett accepted it rather stoically, at least for awhile.

A good dog indeed.

Flying Lesson #91 - Short Field Landings Suck

Yesterday at noon the weather was far to nice to eat lunch indoors. So I called and Ray and a plane was available and I got a lesson in.

We flew up to Lapeer (D95) to practice some short field landings.

Flight there was good, winds were light and it was nice and clear out.

So I needed to work on short field landings and that's what we worked on.

The first landing was sucky, came in too high and when landing landed long and overshot the mark beyond acceptable parameters. Half the fun is figuring out where is the "mark" exactly, not to mention the aiming point for it. It looks a helluva lot easier in books and in online videos to figure this out.

Also dropping to 40 degrees of flaps makes the plane drop very nicely, and this is moreso when you cut the power the nose drops pretty quickly so you need to rotate and cut the power at the same time once you hit your aiming point and then drift over to your mark.

The next few were ok, and maybe I'm being too hard on myself but I'm clearly not getting it. I'm certainly more comfortable flying now but this particular maneuver is not working.

We then came back to Pontiac and I did a decent but not great short field landing. However I think at this stage I shouldn't need coaching to do it and I still need that apparently.

In other news, Ray has been invited to apply at Endeavor Airlines, the feeder airline for Delta (For which I have no doubt he'll do a darn good job) so I'll likely be out another instructor shortly. He does say "I'm close" but that's been said for awhile now so it'll be fun to see if I test before or after he gets called up to the airlines. On reflection I sure as heck don't feel ready now. I can fly fine, land fine enough for normal circumstances and in reasonable crosswinds and for soft fields, but that likely won't meet the check-ride standards especially the no flap slip and short field landings, not to mention the emergency landing procedure is now rusty as is the power on stall while turning.....

For now I'd say my knowledge for the oral exam portion of the test is there, but how long it will all stay in there (it's closed book so it all must be memorized and ready to be spit back no matter how fargin' useless some of the knowledge is to actual real world flying or that in real life you can actually open the frickin' book and have the answer right there) and how long I'm going to keep reviewing it is getting in question.

So do I switch to Crosswinds and pay the lots extra and learn the G1000 setup? Downside is it will mean adding even more time and lots more travel time, probably dropping my flying lesson schedule to once a week and with weather will mean I'll be flying less than once a week. Also spending an hour driving to the field to find out the lesson is cancelled will suck. Do I stick with doing a bit at both?

Or do I just finish at Flight 101?

Do I say screw it and take the winter off as driving an hour each way to Crosswinds in the winter will suck and instead take the time to replenish the bank account and try again in the spring? Of course, by then I'll need a new medical and I think one of the new student pilots cert as mine is tied to the medical, and if we wait long enough and get to October 2017, I can do the written test again - Oh Joy!

In a few more hours, and if I can learn a chandelle and a few figure eights, I can skip the private rating and jump right to the Commercial pilot cert, right guys?

To say I haven't a frickin' clue how to proceed with this and getting kinda disenchanted with the whole deal would be an understatement.