Wednesday, October 05, 2022

Yom Kippur

Today is the holiest day on the Jewish Calendar.

A day for introspection, fasting, atonement, and repentance towards both G_d and man.

גמר חתימה טובה
Gmar Chatimah Tova 

May all my friends and readers be sealed in the Book of Life for a happy and healthy New Year.

Tuesday, October 04, 2022

The Air Zoo - Rare Bird

There's a very rare bird at the Kalamazoo Air Zoo.

Looking like something out of Sky Captain and The World of Tomorrow, this futuristic-looking aircraft was a flying flop.

It was quite simply more a danger to its pilots than the enemy, having really vicious stall characteristics.  Then the coming of the jet age ended the development of this pusher-prop design.

It is the Curtis-Wright XP-55 Ascender.

Of the three prototypes, two aircraft crashed with both aircraft being completely totaled, with one of the two crashes killing the pilot flying it.

This Curtis-Wright XP-55 Ascender, is the only one left in existence, and happens to be prototype number two, as prototypes one and three were both destroyed in crashes.

Currently on long-term loan from the National Air and Space Museum, you can find it now on display in Kalamazoo where it was sent to be restored, and very nicely restored it was.

The Kalamazoo Air Zoo has a very well-deserved reputation for aircraft restoration work.

Monday, October 03, 2022

To No One's Surprise, Democrats' Stock Trade Ban Bill Is Deader Than A Doornail

If you haven't guessed by now, it's dead because the Democrats in Congress killed it.

Rather funny how that happens, especially when the Democrat leadership is making millions off of their insider trading information in stocks.

The Intercept:  House Democratic Leadership Designed Stock Trade Ban to Fail, Negotiators Say

Democrat House Majority Leader Sten Hoyer announced there would be no vote on the bill before the midterms.

 Funny that, isn't it?  The Democrats have a clear majority in the House and could pass this legislation without any Republicans at all if they wanted to do so (as flawed as it is with many seemingly deliberate openings to still permit insider trading among Congressional members).  

But they don't, because that would cut off a major opportunity they have to enrich themselves at our expense, all the while claiming they're "for the little people" and against the rich, while becoming very rich themselves based off stock trades from insider information.

The Air Zoo - The Original Angry Birds

So I took the shuttle to the Flight Innovation Center which is now the main museum.  The Flight Discovery Center is where you park the plane and is where the original museum was until it expanded, and its where they do restorations - much more on that later.

 After you pay your admission fee, you walk in the Flight Innovation Center.

There as you walk in, you can see the original Angry Birds:

A P-38 Lightning.  Hanging from the roof, this twin engine fork-tailed devil struck fear into its enemies' hearts and had such storied missions as the interception and shoot-down of Admiral Yamamoto,

A Bell P-39Q Airacobra.  

Not having a turbo-charged engine hampered its high-altitude performance and it was not liked by US pilots. But, the Soviets in World War 2 on the other hand loved them for low-level fighting and ground attack missions that were common on the Eastern front, and over 60% of P-39s were sent to the USSR.

A B-25J Mitchell.  Because you can never have enough .50 caliber machine guns. This one, part of the 498th Bomber Squadron  (the "Fighting Falcons") was setup as a strafing attack bomber and has 18 fifty cals mounted, with 14 of them facing forward to fire on strafing runs.  Note the P-40 angry bird to the side as well.

Then there was much more to see in just the first room of the museum.

Sunday, October 02, 2022

Flying - To The Air Zoo!

I had the day all to myself so I decided after taking car of the dogs to take flight.

I had never gone to the Kalmazoo Air Zoo at KAZO, so I decided to fly there today.

Wind was kinda gusty and strong from 040 so I took off in the Archer (Dakota was booked by someone else for the weekend) from Runway 9L and headed on my way.

I got flight following which was helpful as there was parachute jumping activity and glider activity that I was routed around, which was rather nice.

Climbed to 6,500, and with a nice tailwind was doing 123 knots ground speed.

Overflew Battle Creek on the way.  Need to stop there soon as the food at the restaurant there is supposed to be amazing, and the WACO aircraft factory is there.

Then coming in to Kalamazoo, I got to choose if I wanted Rwy 5, the shorter Runway or Runway 35, the longer one with a major crosswind.  Since the wind was blowing 040-050, Runway 5 was the right choice for me.

So, I entered the right downwind for it and then made a very nice landing. The wind remained gusty but kindly settled on 050 right during my landing which made it rather nice indeed.

Then Kalamazoo Ground most helpfully gave me progressive taxi to the museum airplane parking area.

You can see the flag whipping in the wind.

I then parked in the visitor area.

One other plane, another Piper Archer, was there when I got there so I parked nicely beside it.

And then I headed into the Museum.

Pilots and their passengers get their own entrance into the museum, at the restoration area, and then I get a shuttle to the main museum.  We also get to sign in with our plane info as well and get a sticker badge with our N-number on it to wear to show we flew in (and probably to find us if they need us to move the planes around I suppose).   I had a great chat with one of the docents on the way to the main museum, and then paid my entrance fee and went in then off to explore.

That's 1.3, 1.3 cross-country, and 1 rather nice landing. 

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Long After The Horses Have Already Bolted And The Pigs Have Fed At The Trough

Democrats are beginning to realize their Marie Antoinette approach hasn't been a hit with most Americans.

The Detroit News: Democrats unveil bill to restrict trading by lawmakers, presidents

This is of course, long after the Nancy Pelosi stock picking method, and the wealth she has amassed from it, has become legendary, and long after she;s moved to block prior bans.

Interestingly, and not surprisingly, there's lots of push-back from the Democrats in the House and Senate who want to keep on insider trading.

Unsurprisingly, the bill itself has apparently a huge loophole to keep insider trading alive.

Hilariously, the Detroit News article states that:

Forcing a vote now has the added bonus of putting Republicans on the spot, they said.

So, the Democrats themselves are conflicted with many against the bill as it harms their economic self-interest and opportunity to make millions insider trading, yet somehow bringing it up to vote will be "putting Republicans on the spot".

Pull the other one, it's got bells on it.

That Subsidy Could Have Bought An Awful Lot of New Power Plants

The Detroit News: Germany to spend billions to tackle high energy prices

Green dreams tend to end up in power supply nightmares, don't they?

Germany plans to spend up to 200 billion euros ($195 billion) helping consumers and businesses cope with surging energy prices, particularly for natural gas, due to the war in Ukraine.

Note this doesn't actually tackle high energy prices and does nothing to address the supply issue, it merely papers over it for consumers and has the government pay for the increase that is due to lousy planning on the German government's part when it comes to energy.  It's just a lot of spent money to kick the can down the road and not address the problem.

At approximately $4 Billion per reactor in construction costs (Nuclear power plants apparently are very expensive to build but relatively inexpensive to run), that money could have built 48 Nuclear plants and had money left over for operations of them.

Pity Germany embraced outsourcing its power generation and power supplies to a rather unreliable supplier in Russia.  

Even better, remember how they smirked and outright laughed at Trump when he noted their reliance on Russian gas was a bad idea. Who is laughing now?

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Putting The Mental in Judgmental

Ah, Detroit is a place that is run in a demonstrably poor fashion by Democrats, and its 36th District Court is even worse, which is why I try to avoid practicing there as much as possible. 

The Detroit News: 36th District judge 'unfit,' should be removed from bench, state commission says

The commission determined each of 36th District Court Judge Kahlilia Davis's multiple acts of misconduct are "egregious in their own right," according to the organization's decision and recommendation for discipline that was released Friday night. Davis was accused of failing to record court proceedings, refusing to abide by a performance plan the court set up for her and blanketly dismissing cases from a specific process server because she did not trust him.

Of course she then attempted to sue playing the race card.  The hard part about playing the race card in Detroit, however, is most of her superiors are Black themselves, and her many egregious mistakes were rather prominent, and the case was dismissed.

As for the mental part, she:

Routinely showed up late, missed days of work and performed the job poorly, according to the report. The State Court Administrative Office stepped in to make a performance plan for her, in which Davis refused to participate. Instead, she attacked the people assigned to help her "with discourteous and unprofessional written threats and barbs, including biblical quotes insinuating that her colleagues and the administrators should or would go to Hell."

Not exactly showing a proper judicial temperament there at all.

Monday, September 26, 2022

Happy Rosh HaShanah 5783 / 2022

Happy Rosh Hashannah!

Services get to be live this year, which is a welcome improvement over the Zoom of the past couple years.

May my readers and friends have a good and sweet new year, and be inscribed in the Book of Life.

שנה טובה ומתוקה