Monday, April 30, 2018

Just When You Thought Broward County's Failures Concerning The Parkland Shooting Can't Get Any Worse, They Do

Just when you thought the multiple failures by government at various levels, mainly at the Broward County Sheriffs Office and Broward County School Board concerning the shooting at Parkland can't get even worse, they do.

It is not the mainstream media providing this latest report of massive incompetence and malfeasance surrounding the shooting. Instead, it is thanks to the work of a 19-year-old Broward student, Kenneth Preston, who found out some incredible further incompetence and yet more opportunities where the powers that be actively ignored and failed to take action against Cruz and thus failed to interdict and prevent the shooting.

Twitchy: ‘My blood is boiling’: Broward student journalist lays out his case against superintendent, school board

Take your time and read it all.

A Quick 4-point summary that doesn't do it justice, again go read it all, it is pretty easy to follow:

1. The School Board after a $100 million dollar appropriation for school security in 2014, they failed to spend it, including a failure to modify the fire alarms to turn off if there is not a real fire, which would likely have saved lives along with other enhancements.
2. The School Board had a policy to keep students out of jail, going so far as to instruct school resource officers that when a felony is committed by a student that they could consider arresting them, not that they should arrest them, but they should just consider it as an option.
3. Cruz "was never arrested despite threatening to kill students, bringing bullets to school, and being involved in multiple fights."
4. No school board member or other administrative officials have been fired or required to resign for their malfeasance and disastrous policies to date.

Again, the mainstream media and professional journalists didn't pick up on this, it took a student journalist to be interested and persistent enough to dig this up, and it again destroys the blame the NRA narrative.

While the blame for these murders lies squarely with the killer, the errors of both omission and commission on the part of the Broward County School Board and The Broward County Sheriffs Office along with a fumble by the FBI and a push from the Obama administration set the stage for this event to happen.

Let's go over the many failures in this case just to highlight how extensive and comprehensive the failure was and how the failures absolutely paved the pay and enabled Cruz to commit his acts:

1. Broward County School Board, as encouraged by the Obama administration, adopts the Broward Promise where they decide to deliberately ignore and not prosecute crimes by students including violent felonies. The policy is likely why there is a 20-minute delay on the video feed to the Sheriff's station, so the school administration can delete evidence in a timely manner. This 20 minute delay causes problems and likely cost lives. The School officials deliberately ignore that Cruz has been threatening to kill students, bringing bullets to school, and being involved in multiple fights and never have the Sheriff's Office arrest him or bring charges for any of these actions, but only suspend him and prohibit him from having a backpack in the building (Anyone want to bet that there was a gun along with the bullets that day and the school disappeared it to avoid prosecuting him under a GFSZ violation?).

2. Broward County Sheriff's Office is called to the Cruz home at least 39 times. Cruz is never arrested or charged during any of these visits. Including:
At least one if not more visits due to allegations he hit his mother - a charge and conviction would be a crime of domestic violence which would have banned him from legally purchasing firearms.
At least one if not more visits due to allegations he hit his brother - a charge and conviction would be a crime of domestic violence which would have banned him from legally purchasing firearms.
At least one visit is based on allegations he pointed a gun at his mother- a charge and conviction would be a felonious assault which would have certainly banned him from legally purchasing firearms.
At least one visit is based on allegations he pointed a gun at his brother - a charge and conviction would be a felonious assault which would have certainly banned him from legally purchasing firearms.
No arrests are ever done nor were charges ever filed and thus all these easy opportunities to stop this before it even happens were lost.

3. In 2016, Florida Department of Child and Family Services investigates an incident with Cruz, the now infamous Deputy Paterson refuses to tell the investigator about the incident that happened at the school, whatever it was, and the matter is dropped.

4. Also in 2016, DCFS and Henderson Mental Health go to the school to possibly detain Cruz for a mental hold under the Baker Act, which would have made him a prohibited person unable to buy a firearm if had they done so. Of course it wasn't done even after he sent out a snapchat showing him cutting himself, stating he wanted to go buy a gun and had hate paraphernalia about. They decided not to do a hold or psych eval because apparently the school counselor did not want them to act prematurely and told them he was getting counseling and had been found stable enough not to be hospitalized. The matter was then closed.

5. Cruz goes on social media with videos that he will shoot up a school. Numerous calls to bother the Sheriff's Office and at least two to the FBI to warn them that Cruz is threatening to shoot up the school. Nothing is done.

6. Cruz is banned from having a backpack at the school and has apparently already been expelled, but security is apparently so lax he can enter carrying a duffel bag to go on his murder spree unchallenged. Some spending of that $100 million dollars towards security might have helped with that.

7. Cruz then pulls the fire alarm and because the security funds have not been spent, the advanced system planned to be installed is not installed and instead of it being cancelled as a false alarm, students do a fire drill and file out of their classrooms, right into Cruz's bullets.

8. Once the shooting starts the School Resource Officer Deputy Peterson refuses to enter the building and engage the killer and even gives false information on the radio.

9. At least three other deputies after arriving similarly wait outside.

10. Deputies are then ordered by a BCSO captain to stage outside.

11.EMS is not allowed by the BCSO to enter the school and against standard procedure the wounded were brought out to them. Likely that cost time and lives both.

12. No Law Enforcement Personnel even enter the building until 11 minutes after the shooting has started. The killer has already left the building by this point.

The sheer amount of fail before, during, and after the shooting is rather staggering. Verily, it takes a village to mess this up this consistently over and over again. So of course, instead of blaming themselves for this causal chain of events a mile long and years in the making, they decided to blame the NRA.

This is as if the powers that be decided to ignore arsonists as it made their crime stats look bad, knew there was one around the area, and knew exactly who the local arsonist was who was setting a series of small fires. Knowing that, they then took a bunch of flammable material, piled it up in a building, soaked it in gasoline, and after being told the arsonist was going to come set it on fire did nothing. After the arsonist gets on social media and says he's coming to light the building on fire they still do nothing. Then, when the arsonist went ahead and in fact lit a match, tosses it onto the gas-soaked pile and burned the building down, they held a press conference to blame the National Match Association for advocating for law-abiding people to be allowed to own matches and preventing common sense match control and match bans.

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Leah's First Volleyball Tournament Today

Leah decided that she has been enjoying volleyball at school enough to join a local volleyball team.

She made the team after a tryout and after many practices, today was her first tournament.

The competition was a bit stiff. She's in the 11-12 age group and was facing teams in the 13-14 age group and those few years do make a difference.

The tournament was held up in Holly so we all piled in the car and headed up there. Parents had a $5 admission fee to enter the gymnasium, likely to help pay for renting the facility for the day.

It's quite a high energy sport - teams cheering during play, lots of happy yelling, and this tournament featured lots of good sportsmanship and positive reinforcement from team members. The parents and coaches were also all quite relentlessly positive and other parents were helpful in explaining to us newbies some of the things that needed doing and understanding the scoring system and referee hand signals.

I'm proud to report that Leah went hard for every ball, including one she got to in a dive, and had not the slightest bit of quit in her. Her serve scored a winning point in one of the games which was very cool.

Her team held their own against the older players, winning some games, and keeping it close even when they lost, such as a 24-26 loss and similar. All the girls were encouraging each other and were in good spirits the entire time, and some of them are very good indeed.

She enjoyed it a lot and the season has just begun.

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Here's the Wind Up, The Pitch . . .

And It's An Own Goal!

A Hamas member trying to sling a rock at Israelis has a work accident, and hilarity ensues:

So much for throwing rocks being a harmless pastime. That one had to hurt.

As a good friend of mine often says: "If you're gonna be dumb, you better be tough".

New Jersey Congressman: We Need Background Checks On Assault Vehicle Rentals

In the wake of the Toronto van attack, and the previous vehicular jihadi attack in New York City count on a New Jersey Democrat Congressman to introduce legislation to make everyone "safer".

By requiring background checks before renting vehicles.

WCBS: N.J. Congressman Calls For Legislation To Keep Rental Vehicles Away From Dangerous People

In the wake of the deadly Toronto van attack, U.S. Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-New Jersey) is proposing legislation to make it tougher to get people to use vehicles as weapons.

The legislation is called the Darren Drake Combating 21st Century Weapons Act. It honors a New Milford, New Jersey resident who was killed in a vehicular terror attack on the West Side bike path last year that also left seven others dead and injured at least 12.

Certainly a three-day cooling-off period before renting a vehicle would be a perfectly reasonable step, and not any infringement of the right to travel, neh? After all, we can't have people renting 21st Century Weapons willy-nilly. Mind you, the car was first invented in the 19th century so the legislation is rather ahistoric in name.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Toronto Van Attack Was By Mentally Ill POS

A mentally ill idiot decided his best way to get revenge for his "involuntary celibacy" was to mow down innocent people with a van in Toronto, killing 10 and wounding at least 17.

This strikes rather close to home as I've been around the Finch and Yonge street intersection many a time, and it was a regular part of my travels and life for years. Also, the fact that the POS went to my high school alma mater similarly makes it rather close to home.

Assuming the Facebook post is not some epic 4chan trolling, and it appears that it is in fact real, the scumbag allegedly left a Facebook message that not only shows he's quite a few Froot Loops short of a cereal box, and claimed he was doing it because he was an "incel".

The National Post: Toronto van attack suspect Alek Minassian’s interest in ‘incel’ movement the latest sign of troubled life

Again not treating people with mental illness and mainstreaming the mentally ill can lead to serious problems, and it seems pretty darn clear he hadn't been firing on all cylinders for a long time:

“I had classes with him. He was mentally unstable back then. He was known to meow like a cat and try to bite people; this is one sad and confusing story,” Alexander Alexandrovitch said of his former classmate in a Facebook post.

Reza Fakhteh said he overlapped with Minassian for two years at Thornlea. He described Minassian as a special education student who rarely socialized and had no obvious friends.

“I never heard him speak beyond meowing at people,” Fakhteh wrote in a Facebook message. “His movements were erratic and just strange overall. He acted like a cat in every way.” Fakhteh said he was shocked to hear that Minassian was named as a suspect in this kind of attack. “

The guy I remember from high school definitely wouldn’t be driving,” he said.

Well, apparently he was able to drive, with rather horrific effects.

Since there are no background checks on the rental of motor vehicles, not that that would have made any difference in this case, expect these sorts of attacks both by actual terrorists, copycats and mentally ill to continue.

Amazingly, no calls for banning fully semi-automatic transmission equipped vehicles have yet to be made, nor have any protest marches been planned to call for common sense vehicle regulations, nor indeed has the Canadian Automobile Association been blamed for the attack, at least not yet.

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Judgments And Liens To Be Removed From Credit Reports By Government Order - What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

Yes, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, that rather rogue agency created by the Obama administration decided it didn't like that judgments and tax liens were being reported and negatively affecting peoples credit scores - poor and minorities hardest hit doncha' know?

The Detroit Free Press: Credit scores may jump this month thanks to new scoring rules enacted after CFPB study

Of course, while this will help the scofflaws with outstanding judgments and tax liens, will now be more likely to get credit they otherwise would not, but this will likely increase the cost of credit for everyone as lenders won't be able to factor the risk that the money they lend many not be able to be paid back by the borrower after the borrower is garnished or has their assets seized to satisfy the outstanding judgments and tax liens.

What could possibly go wrong with making sure subprime and deep subprime borrowers get even more access to credit and with lenders not able to know the full scope of the risk they are making lending to them?

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Latest Addition To The Blogroll

Fresh off the blogspot press, The Counter Jockey Chronicles, a new blog by a good gun aficionado and fellow NRA Annual Meeting Attendee that I've met in person. A very nice guy indeed.

He just started his blog today, and I expect we'll be reading some excellent and interesting tales, opinions, and stories in no time.

Do check him out.

Stupid Criminal Tricks - Don't Wave A Gun Around In The Air

The Detroit News: Police: Boy, 16, pulls gun, gets shot at fight

A 16-year-old boy was shot in his leg after allegedly pulling a gun at a fight Monday night on Detroit's east side, police said.

The shooting took place at 7:30 p.m. on the 12100 block of Wayburn, which is south of Moross and east of Kelly.

The victim had been involved in a fight and held a gun in the air, said Sgt. Nicole Kirkwood, a Detroit Police Department spokeswoman. But someone, possibly from across the street, fired a shot, striking the victim in his leg . . . .

Anyone want to place a bet that he acquired that gun legally? Anyone? Yeah, I didn't think so.

A quick tip: Don't get into fights, and if you're in a fight, don't brandish a gun around threateningly as some people may indeed become threatened and shoot you accordingly.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Flying - A Beautiful Flight To Hillsdale

The weather forecast for this morning was most promising: A nice high pressure area, clear visibility and mild winds. So it was to prove to be.

I had booked the plane from 9am-12pm to get a cross-country flight in. Flying Archer N3553M for the first time.

In addition to being in nice shape, N3553M recently received the Garmin electronic heading and attitude indicator upgrades, which were darn nice. Looks like they will be installing those throughout the DCT fleet.

They worked very nicely. Very easy to read at a glance, and they also provide airspeed and altitude information.

So after the preflight and run-up I took off from Runway 27R and headed southwest to Hillsdale.

On the way I passed over the Michigan international Speedway.

Moving along I flew over someone burning some brush to celebrate Earth Day. I was doing my part to celebrate Earth Day as well - burning 100 low-lead fuel at full rental power and enjoying the inventiveness of humankind while doing so.

I then arrived at the City of Hillsdale and overflew Hillsdale College.

Hillsdale College is a classical liberal institution. Receiving no Federal funding, it set its own agenda, which tends to be on the conservative and scholarly side. Very highly regarded its a definite gem of southern Michigan.

Then to Hillsdale Airport - right in sight of the college, the runway is 5,000 feet long and the winds were blowing nice and straight down the runway at 8 knots gusting to 15 on 010.

So I setup to enter the pattern for Runway 10.

The first landing was a tad firmer than I would have liked it, not bad, but a little hard pretty much a short field technique. So, I did the pattern again and had a much smoother and softer landing the second time around.

Then I headed back to Pontiac, deciding to fly a bit farther north rather than direct. This was good as the Garmin 430 for some reason lost its GPS fix for about 5 minutes after I took off from Hillsdale, but my iPad maintained its GPS without an issue. The 430W later went back to functioning properly, but it wasn't an issue as I had backups and paper charts available in any case.

I then flew near Livingston County Airport, a very enjoyable airport to fly. They were kinda busy so I stayed a good distance above and away.

Then I flew over the Chrysler Proving Grounds.

Then I did some IFR flying - IFR in this case meaning I Follow Roads - I flew above M-59 and headed east to Pontiac airport.

This set me up for a perfect approach to 9L, as the winds had picked up at Pontiac and were blowing from 090. I called Pontiac when I was 12 miles out and they instructed me to do a straight in approach.

From 5,500 feet it was easy to see the airport from quite a distance away, and you can see the airport in this picture ahead:

As I hit 5 miles out, they cleared me to land straight in, and I did a nice, smooth landing.

3 landings and 2.1 hours. I could not have asked for better conditions for this flight, simply perfect.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Stupid Criminal Tricks - Running From The Law Doesn't Workout Well.

Running from the law tends to go badly.

Three fine upstanding fellows decided to burglarize a gun store, and while making their getaway managed to crash and kill themselves while being pursued by the police. This is an overall savings to the justice system and does prevent recidivism rather nicely.

The Detroit Free Press: 3 die after police chase, crash following gun shop burglary

Now, maybe they ran because their crime took place on the west side of the state, where they take stealing firearms rather more seriously than in say, Wayne County (Detroit), here on the east side of the state.

After all, had then done it in Wayne County and stole say $30,000 worth of firearm from a gun shop, they would have gotten . . . . probation.

Yep, one of my clients had his gun store burglarized with 30k in firearms taken, one of which showed u in a murder in Florida a week later and the perpetrators, who while they hid their faces from the cameras inside the store missed the video camera and thus were identified as frequent guests of the Wayne County criminal justice system, were caught with some of the merchandise when arrested, and still ended up only getting probation. So much for Wayne County being tough on gun crime.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

That Groundhog Saw His Shadow Yesterday

The same place where the picture of the groundhog was taken as seen today:

Roads are a mess, all iced over and slippery, and traffic is at a crawl.

How did we skip spring, summer and fall and head right back into Winter?

On the upside, power is restored, the house is now up from 58 degrees back to 68 degrees, and the sump pump is working under its own power so we don't need to bail by hand anymore.

Anyone have any opinions on whole-house generator systems?

Monday, April 16, 2018

Visitors Of An Animalian Kind

With the power out it has been pretty quiet around the area.

So quiet that the local wildlife have decided to take a closer look.

This baby deer came right up to the window to nibble on some shrubbery.

When she saw us watching her from the window she was a little surprised and backed up and then headed on her way.

Then we had a meterologically adept animal come by, and unfortunately he's been seeing his shadow quite a lot lately, especially considering it was snowing again today.

Yes, we had a groundhog perambulate around the backyard and come by the windows before he merrily wandered off into the woods . . . . and snow started falling yet again.

Temperatures are forecast to hit freezing again tonight, and we'll likely see snow in the morning.

That Was Not A Fun Way To Spend A Sunday

Last year the power was out for a week in March due to a windstorm.

Now it looks like we're going to be out for awhile as well due to yesterday's ice storm.

The Detroit News: Mich. Monday: Drizzly and 259K without power

The key difference between last year's outage and this one is rain.

Lots of rain.

Lots of rain and very sodden ground.

Yes, with no power, the sump pump pit was filling up at a ridiculous rate. We could only keep pace bailing it out by hand and we easily drained over 1,000 gallons (200 full 5 gallon buckets, and we did more than that) from the pit.

All day, and all night.

During the day the minions were helpful assistants while Tash was out working.

During the night, Tash and I did 2-hour shifts each bailing the pit and then getting a two hour nap and then up again.

It finally slowed down to where we could get ahead of the water coming in it at around 2 am this morning, and we were then only having to empty it every five minutes or so and it's now about a 10 minute fill time now.

More rain and even snow is in the forecast, along with possibly freezing temperatures tonight and no real estimate to when they will restore power yet but some people seem to think it will be back on by Tuesday at 8 pm.

This doth suck, and it sure was a lousy way to spend a day and night.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Ice, Ice, Baby

So, this 15th of April, we are allegedly well into spring.

It seems that nobody informed Winter of this seasonal change.

Ice and snow cover the ground, making it a slippery mess, freezing rain is falling as we speak.

Good thing I looked at the weather ahead of time and decided this weekend would not be a good time to fly.

If Winter would please go away, it would be appreciated as it has seriously worn out its welcome.

And we just lost power, likely due to trees covered in ice falling on power lines. Great.

Guess what doesn’t work without power? One hint - it’s raining heavily still. Yes, you guessed it, the sump pump. A battery backup unit for it just moved to the top of the list. When you’re bailing the sump pump pit constantly and having emptied over a 200 gallons worth of five gallon buckets and the water level is still not going down, you know it’s a whole lot of wet out. Today’s work out comes in a five gallon bucket.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

The Brits Stoop To Associating Cookie Monster With Crime And Cowardice

In the place Where Great Britain used to be, there's a current push to ban knives, because someone might very well hurt themselves, and the Brits are going through a spot of "knife violence" with London overtaking New York in murders. Just like gun control, it's a wrong-headed focus on the tool rather than the criminal, continues the obsession of blaming crime on inanimate objects, and will likely give much the same results.

But, in their quest for a fully disarmed citizenry, the Essex police have stooped so low as to defame Cookie Monster and associate him with knives, violence, and cowardice.

To depict Cookie Monster in a picture under the title "Only Cowards Carry" depicts him as a craven coward associated with criminals that use knives, including Swiss army knives (yes, really), screwdrivers, and broken bottles is a most base insult.

Silly Brits, C is for cookie, not coward.

Snowbirds' Tribute To Lost Thunderbirds Pilot

Major Stephen Del Bagno, Thunderbirds #4, was killed in a crash on April 4 during a training flight.

The Royal Canadian Air Force Snowbirds flew a tribute missing man formation for him on April 10:

A very classy and respectful move from an allied air force aerial demonstration team.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

The UN: From Hope, To Tragedy, To Farce, To Tragedy, To Farce Yet Again

The UN is often a self-parody of itself, doing things that you just can't make up if you tried. It has beclowned itself yet again this week.

UN Watch: Syria to chair UN disarmament forum on chemical & nuclear weapons; watchdog calls on US & EU to walk out

No, you really can't make this stuff up, they really just did that on Monday, right after Syria used chemical weapons against its own population yet again. Of Course, Syria had been appointed to the UNESCO Human Rights committee in 2013 as it was killing its own citizens wholesale so the current appointment merely follows the trend.

It's the stuff of farce. The country in the news today for the most recent use of chemical weapons (and sought to build nuclear weapons in the recent past and was found in breach of the non-proliferation treaty, if not currently) has been named as the chair of the UN's disarmament forum on chemical and nuclear weapons.

Yes, the organization that named Iran to the UN's Women's rights committee as Iran was violating women's rights wholesale, has now named Syria, the most famous current user of banned chemical weapons to chair the committee on disarmament of chemical weapons.

One wonders if the members of the UN completely lack any sense of self-awareness or shame, or for that matter why anyone should take anything the UN and the UN General Assembly does seriously ever again, if you ever took it seriously before.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

More Canadian Statue Shark Jumping - Halifax Removes The Statue Of Its Founder

Canada seems to be the new hotspot for historical statue revisionism.

Halifax actually removed the statue of Lord Edward Cornwalis, the founder of the City of Halifax in 1749. The city of Halifax had errected a statue of him in the 1931, where it remained in Edward Cornwallis Park until this year.

Yes, they actually removed the statue of the founder of the the city.

This was done at the behest of various Native American and Black groups because Lord Cornwallis wasn't very nice to the MikMak population, nor the African population. There were slaves in Halifax after all. There was also the small matter of a war he fought in with the MicMacs, when the Micmacs took the side of the French against the British. Cornwallis and the British won that series of wars and the French and Micmacs lost.

Apparently the main reason the Micmacs are against him is he ordered the scalping of Micmacs during the war, and they're proposing some Micmac figure replaces him at the park. Remember its not like he just ordered people out to take scalps, the Micmacs were at war with the British during the time.

The decision comes after increasing controversy over Cornwallis's so-called scalping proclamation that offered a cash bounty to anyone who killed a Mi'kmaw person.

One should note this proclamation was made during a war between the British and the Micmacs brought on by Micmac raids on British settlements and after multiple battles between the British, French and MicMacs.

Rebecca Moore, a Mi'kmaw and a member of Pictou Landing First Nation, helped organize protests against the Cornwallis statue. She said removing it is an "awesome" step toward reconciliation.

An "expert panel" of Micmacs was to be formed apparently to better enforce historical "reconciliation" and have a statue of some Micmac of note replace Cornwallis, but the #MeToo movement put the brakes on that, at least partially, when one of the MicMacs Chiefs nominated for the panel turned out to be

Wilbert Marshall, the chief of Potlotek First Nation. Some councillors refused to accept Marshall's appointment because he was convicted in 2008 of sexually assaulting a 20-year-old woman.

When you're outraged about a historical event where you lost a war a couple hundred years ago and wish to rewrite history to blot out the victors, but think to nominate a rapist to your truth and reconciliation commission, your SJWness lacks any sense of priorities.

However, there seems to be no remorse on the part of the SJW MicMacs for their rather extensive role in the wholesale elimination of the Beothuk people that occurred around the same time, and indeed there is now a new revisionist historical view that the MicMacs "dindu nothing" against the Beothuks and it was all the white man's fault.

Has The Take Down The Statue Craze Jumped The Shark?

I'd suggest if not, then it's pretty darn close, with the leftists demanding the removal of the statue of yet another evil white male racist imperialist . . . . .


Yes, that Gandhi.

African student body in Ottawa calls to remove statue of ‘anti-black’ Gandhi

I'll note the statue was only installed in 2011 at Carleton university in Ottawa, to much praise. After all, back in 2011, Gandhi was seen as an anti-imperialist, peace-loving, user of non-violence to achieve his goals, and with the statue highlighting the important ties between Canada and India.

How times change in seven short years.

Now the left, which used to accuse the right of failing to have any concept of nuance, have decided that Gandhi's flaws, and yes they are indeed considerable, overshadow any of his accomplishments and make him statua non grata on Carleton university grounds. They're most concerned that Gandhi advocated the South African government of the time to classify Indians as higher than Blacks on the apartheid social scale, which the South African government of the time indeed agreed to and in fact did.

Yes, Carleton University is colloquially known in Canada as "Last Chance U", and for good reason, and the losers of the left get admitted there if they can't make it anywhere else. Too bad they don't want to give Gandhi a chance.

Monday, April 09, 2018

Ok, Who is Holding A Global Warming Conference Today?

Some joker out there must be holding one today, because it's snowing now, and heavily.

Practically the middle of April and we're getting a snowstorm coming down hard enough to reduce visibility and make driving hazardous.

Winter really needs to end.

Ready Player One - The Movie

On Saturday afternoon we went to see Ready Player One, in 3D of course.

While drawing on the book and following the story generally, the movie doesn't quite follow it chapter and verse and often departs from it in many interesting ways.

The contest itself is very different, with an opening scene in the movie that is completely different from how the contest works in the book, most likely to save time and compress the book into a length suitable for the movie. From the start you realize the film will not be faithful to the book, and you just have to go with it preserving the general idea and character names and basic plot line and then majorly adapting it to fit the visual format of the movie screen.

Characters tend to do different things than they did in the book, sometimes very major deviations. When you know character X did something important in the book and instead all of a sudden it is character Y is doing something almost the same but not quite it's a bit jarring. This happens quite a bit. However, the characters in many ways are true to the spirit of the book and would meet your expectations in imagining what they looked like from reading the book, its just their actions that appear off.

There's an entire dramatic episode in the film that does not occur in the book at all, again done in order to dramatically reveal something important that took many pages and encounters in the book for the characters to figure out.

Disappointingly, the band Rush isn't featured at all, and the band had a major part to play in the story.

Lots of things are rather compressed or ignored and that hurts the flavor of the book but makes the movie move along.

The ending seems pretty rushed and a bit contrived and again did not happen in the book, for pretty good reason, considering the villain does something very un-villain like that spoils his overly evil role up to that point.

The villain does it for no particular reason and could easily have continued his villany but stops without word or explanation. It was almost as if the screen writers backed themselves into a corner to have a dramatic ending and then decided to leap their way out of the corner without so much as an explanation.

The screen writers also toned down the 80s lore of the hunt, probably to draw in more millenials and such to the theaters who would likely not get the references in the book, but instead would enjoy the Spielberg effects. It was made much less of a cerebral riddle and problem-solving hunt as depicted in the book and more of an action scavenger hunt that would, given the nature of the imaginary world, have been solved years before the time depicted in the movie so that does detract from it somewhat.

The effects were quite cool throughout, and of course they needed to telescope the book severely to fit it in, and as it was the movie was over two hours. But, time went by rather quickly, but like I said, it felt like it built up to a rather rushed ending (without Rush mind you).

You really don't need to have read Ready Player One to see the movie, and if you didn't like the book due to the 80s references you may end up liking the move as it is quite different from the book.

Tash gave it a 6, I'd give it a solid 7. Not a movie I would pay to see again in theaters, but I would watch it when it comes out again on Netflix.

In The Place Where Great Britain Used To Be, Yet Again

Facing a knife (murders in London have now exceeded New York City) and acid-attack crime wave, Brtiain's government decided they must do something.

The something now includes banning buying knives online or having "offensive weapons" in your home, complete with new powers for police to search homes for such weapons.

The Mirror: Tough new offensive weapons laws ban keeping so much as a knuckle duster in your home

Tough new laws against offensive weapons will make it illegal to keep so much as a knuckle duster in your home.

In a crackdown to be announced by Home Secretary Amber Rudd on Monday, police will get powers to search, seize and prosecute anyone caught with weapons including zombie knives.

At present cops can act only if they find weapons being carried on the streets.

Ms Rudd’s new Serious Violence Strategy, to combat the recent spate of disfiguring attacks, will also mean a minimum of six months jail for a second offence of possessing acid.

The new “two strikes and you’re out” law will bring corrosive liquids in line with knives.

And police will be told to use stop and search powers to find acids.

Shopkeepers will be banned from selling dangerous cleaning products to people under 18 and, for the first time, a licence will be required to buy sulphuric acid.

Ms Rudd said: “To tackle violent crime effectively, robust legislation and powerful law enforcement must be in place. Stop and search is a vital policing tool and officers will have the Government’s full support to use these powers.”

No one will be able to buy knives online and have them delivered to their homes.

And of course, even more firearms bans, why, because why not, it's the United Kingdom:

Gun clubs will no longer be able to use rapid fire rifles which will be banned outright.

Bump stocks, which increase the rate of fire and have been used in US shootings, will also be forbidden.

And of course just as there is not only no Second nor Fourth Amendment in Britain, there is no First Amendment to prevent government restraints on speech and imprisonment for speech - so there must be more restrictions, for your own good, of course:

Ms Rudd will also target any social media which glorifies violence and demand providers remove gang material including music and videos.

And progressives would see us become just like Great Britain with controls on ordinary citizens' choice of weapons, speech, and the elimination of security from expansive searches in return for a police department that ignores crime unless "committed" by an ordinary decent citizen.

Sunday, April 08, 2018

Flying - A Good Flight To Bad Axe

In my continuing quest to build hours and cross-country time, I had a nice flight planned to Bad Axe. Skies were supposed to be clear up to 12,000 per the weather briefing. Not so much. There was a pretty much broken layer between 3,000-3,500 the whole way there and back so it was a relatively low level flight the whole way.

I had booked N8570F but for some reason they moved me to N1869H.

N1869H has received a new paint job and new Garmin heading and attitude indicators, getting rid of its rather unreliable vacuum system. Pretty cool new stuff.

Unfortunately, she would not start.

So I had to move my stuff to N8570F and of course it started with no problems.

A good and smooth takeoff and I was on my way.

On the way to Bad Axe there was still a fair bit of snow on the ground as I flew north.

You know Bad Axe is near when you can see the many windmills and the Lake Huron in the distance.

A nice landing on Runway 35 with a bit of a crosswind from 330 at 9 kts. Then taxi back on taxiway Alpha to the start of the runway, takeoff and head back to Pontiac.

On the way back, I overflew Lapeer Airport.

It's a nice airport to fly into, but I did not have the time to stop so I simply flew over and took a picture.

Then it was back to Pontiac and per the tower entering a right base and doing a very nice landing again on Runway 27R with winds from 300 at 12.

I averaged around 120-130 kts per hour during the trip using full rental power as I had to make up the time lost that was involved in switching planes and doing two full preflights, and it was a nice quiet and relaxing time flying.

1.8 Hours and 2 landings.

Thursday, April 05, 2018

In The Place Where Great Britain Used To Be

Sky News: Pensioner held on suspicion of murdering 'burglar' pictured

Yes, a 78-year old managed to kill one of at least a pair of armed home invaders who broke into his home is now being held on suspicion of committing murder.

Reportedly, the home invaders, armed with screwdrivers, backed the man into his kitchen where at least one of them found out you shouldn't bring a screwdriver to a knife fight.

In most civilized countries, a 78-year-old facing and successfully fighting off two armed home invaders would be praised.

Unfortunately, this occurred in the United Kingdom, where permissible acts of self defense are now reduced to lying down and thinking of England.

Wednesday, April 04, 2018

Mother Nature Has Been Hitting The Sauce Yet Again

This morning:

Yep, a snow fall in April.

This does happen in Michigan pretty regularly, and it always causes one to be rather taken aback. After all, we just had the snow all finally melt away, Winter is ending, and now this.

Today is low IFR conditions with complete overcast and 50 mile an hour winds that can be felt even while driving on the highway, and blowing snow from the sky.

Spring is sure taking its sweet time getting here. That, or Winter is giving Spring a miss and going to straight on to Summer.

Tuesday, April 03, 2018

Youtube Shooter Identified?

Reports are coming in stating that the shooter was a woman and this was likely a domestic dispute brought to work.

Not so fast.

You simply can't assume her gender like that. After all, his is YouTube/Google.

This may instead very well be the first murder ever committed by a Dragonkin or perhaps even a Unicorn.

Good thing it took place in a gun-free zone,and therefore is in-possible.

Update: Shooter is identified as a hot, crazy Iranian, Muslim, Vegan probably a devotee of Crossfit. It was not a "domestic situation" but apparently she was angry over her YouTube channel being demonetized and hated the company. No news on how she self-identified yet. She wounded three and only killed herself.

Scenes From Court Today - "No. You Can't Be A Little Bit Attorney"

So I'm in court to represent my client on a traffic ticket. While waiting first to discuss the matter with the prosecutor at the pretrial conference and then to put the arrangement on the record I get to observe some cases.

First, a lady is arguing with the prosecutor over her ticket. Since she was caught on LIDAR, her claim that she wasn't speeding probably won't go very well and there's some related issues as well. He offers her a reduction from 4 points to one point and getting rid of the other charge. She wants to see the dash-cam footage of her being pulled over. He notes she should have asked for that before, as today is the day of the hearing if it is not resolved. He nicely explains how the hearing will likely go not in her favor and she can take the deal as offered or have the hearing. She keeps arguing and he says fine, we'll go ahead with a hearing on it. Not exactly smart on her part.

Then, after I acept a rather nice deal on behalf of my client, I get to wait in the courtroom.

First up, a case is being adjourned as the court-appointed lawyer is withdrawing due to "communication breakdown wit the client". I.E. in this case the client isn't listening to the attorney at all. But it gets better.

The lady indicates she dosn't want another court appointed attorney, she wants her father to represent her.

"Is her father an attorney?", the judge asks.

"He's an attorney but not on paper" she replies.

The judge asks if he is or isn't, for just like being pregnant, you can't be a little bit attorney.

She finally admits the father is not an attorney. Not that anyone really thought otherwise.

The Father then asks to talk and he then tries to start arguing the case. The judge kindly explains that he can’t be her attorney as he isn't actually an attorney, and now is not the time to discuss case as it is a motion hearing. He states the case will be a jury trial if she doesn't resolve it so he can't hear factual arguments right now. Father doesn't get it and he wants to keep arguing. Judge kindly tells him no, grants the appointed attorney's motion to withdraw and says the lady really needs an actual attorney, either at her own cost, or a court-appointed defense attorney. Fun to watch.

Next up is yet another winner. Charged with with driving while on a suspended license and possessing drug paraphanelia. Fellow had been charged with driving while suspended by the same judge in 2008, and here he is in front of him again for the same thing. In the meantime, he's had a multitude of tickets and his driving record is littered with unpaid fines and offenses. tickets. But he keeps driving anyways. The judge carefully explains using very small words that a suspended license means you cannot drive. I don't think the lesson sunk in.

Next up is yet another driver, a lady, who has been zipping along on a suspended license with over $1,000 in unpaid tickets. She similarly gets the "What part of suspended license and you may not drive do you not understand?" lecture.

Yet another driver caught driving on a suspended license is next. Again it's not his first rodeo, and again the judge has to explain that a suspended license means you cannot drive.

Some people don’t learn. And they’re still out there driving, badly.

Monday, April 02, 2018

Kinda Missing The Plot

From Small Dead Animals: Manitoba's NDP (New Democratic party - Canada's socialist political party that typically comes in third behind the Liberals and Conservatives, decided to tweet a wish of a Happy Passover to Jewish Manitobans.

With a picture of two ladies with a loaf of challah bread. Yes, really.

Considering the rules of Passover are pretty specific and pretty well known that you can't have challah bread, or any other leavened bread for that matter (amongst other things) during the eight days of Passover, and instead have to eat Matzah (unleavened bread) this is a bit of a faux pas.

Anyways, have a Happy Passover thos those who celebrate it, and a Happy Easter to those who celebrate it.