Tuesday, February 28, 2017

February 28, 2017--A Quick Run Around the Web

"History's Deadliest Bullet..."--Iraqveteran8888
The Minié "ball" used during the American Civil War. (14 min.)

Firearms/Self-Defense/Prepping:
           “The reason why you can’t be married to your cover is that your opponent is still mobile,” Jon asserted. “If your opponent can still change positions and is willing to agress, your cover becomes your coffin.”
             Being generally coffin averse, I asked Jon how to avoid making that mistake. “You need to change your focus,” he said. “Stop focusing on yourself. Focus all your attention and energy on eliminating the threat.”
               Jon counsels anyone involved in a defensive gun use to think of it as an offensive gun use. If you adopt a passive survive-at-all-costs attitude you’ll have a very hard time leaving the safety of cover. Or, for that matter, moving towards the bad guy — which is an excellent way to improve your accuracy.
                 If you think of a gunfights as aggressive threat elimination, you’re more likely to move out from behind cover — as you should — to attack and put the bad guy(s) out of commission. You’ll be more willing to move towards the threat, or do whatever else is necessary to end the encounter.
          The basic lesson, in my mind, is that you should either be retreating to a position of absolute safety (e.g., leaving the scene), or acting aggressively to stop the shooter.
          • "The Dangers of 'De-Escalation'"--Law Officer. Discussing the fatal shooting of James Robert Richards, Jr., 28, of Fairbanks, Alaska, by law enforcement, the author observes:
                 Here is a suspect that has fired his weapon and violently assaulted citizens and in the name of ‘de-escalation’ he is permitted to walk the streets with a gun and even take a hostage before he was killed by police.
                   In this situation, the hostage was not hurt but in the next we may not be so fortunate.
                     In this situation, the attempt of the police to ‘de-escalate’ caused further danger to the community and while they went above and beyond to not use deadly force (to the point a hostage was taken), what did that get them?
                       They were still accused of being racists.
                • Too little, too late? "Gun Review: Beretta APX Full-Size Striker Fired Pistol"--The Truth About Guns. A look at the new Beretta polymer framed striker fired pistol. Like the Sig P320, it uses an internal serialized chassis that, in theory, would allow you to swap different sized frames.
                • "Safety Question"--The Shooting Wire. Question: Why is it safe to carry a pistol with a chambered round, but not a rifle or shotgun? Answer:
                         Look at currently available handguns and you'll see that, as a class, they tend to be drop safe – and we're not just talking about being dropped, but rough handling generally. The multiple redundant safeties one sees in service type handguns give us the indication that the intent of the designers is that they be carried loaded.
                           And shotguns or rifles aren't? Well, no. One loads up at the blind or the stand or at the outset of the stalk – not riding around in the truck. As to law enforcement applications, note the policy for carry of long guns in so-called "cruiser-ready" – magazine loaded, chamber empty.
                              Chamber a round of ammo in an AR, then rack it out. When you check it later, there's a small dimple in the primer from the firing pin coming forward along with bolt and bolt carrier group – how many times do you want to chamber that round?
                                 As to shotguns, even a manufacturer of a shotgun that had been approved for use by Department of Defense after passing its tests will say they don't consider that shotgun "drop safe." Most shotguns have a safety that blocks only movement of the trigger: it doesn't lock the hammer, sear or firing pin.

                        Other Stuff:
                        • "What Two Religions Tell Us About The Modern Dating Crises" by Jon Birger at Time. The two religions that are the subject of the article are The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints ("LDS" or "Mormons") and Orthodox Jews (particularly Yeshivish Orthodox). Birger's larger interest is dating and, although he does not use the term, hypergamy (or, at least, a refusal to marry down). Writing generally about the population, he observes:
                               Multiple studies show that college-educated Americans are increasingly reluctant to marry those lacking a college degree. This bias is having a devastating impact on the dating market for college-educated women. Why? According to 2012 population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, there are 5.5 million college-educated women in the U.S. between the ages of 22 and 29 versus 4.1 million such men. That’s four women for every three men. Among college grads age 30 to 39, there are 7.4 million women versus 6.0 million men—five women for every four men. 
                        * * *
                               Lopsided gender ratios don’t just make it statistically harder for college-educated women to find a match. They change behavior too. According to sociologists, economists and psychologists who have studied sex ratios throughout history, the culture is less likely to emphasize courtship and monogamy when women are in oversupply. Heterosexual men are more likely to play the field, and heterosexual women must compete for men’s attention.
                        He goes on to regard the situation in the two religions he has chosen to discuss, and possible causes.
                               Of course, it is not like a sudden plague has reduced the number of men in society. Rather, it is the reduction in what woman would call "good men"--i.e., those that provide the economic and social status for which women are looking. Thus, with fewer men than women attending and graduating from collage, the pool of "good men" is automatically less than the pool of similar status women. This is exacerbated within a tight religious community such as the Yeshivish Orthodox Jews and Utah Mormons (the study cited by Birger focuses on only Utah Mormons; the gender parity is fairly well balanced outside of Utah) because men are more likely than women to leave a religion. I've read, in discussions of the dearth of men following the Civil War, that many women at that time preferred to not marry rather than to "marry down." Today, where marriage is largely optional, there is even less pressure for women to "settle" for less than they believe they are due. Thus, the situation is partly a result of women's expectations and subjective valuation of their own self-worth.
                               In addition, although controversial, there is some evidence to indicate that men have gone on strike, rejecting dating and marriage and the concomitant responsibilities and risks associated with it. Thus, as the author of The Rational Male blog sums up: "The dearth of ‘marriageable’ men is both a reflection of men’s unwillingness to participate in their own indenturing and women’s unrealistic expectations of men prompted by an unrealistically exaggerated sense of personal worth."
                        • An inconvenient truth: "Polar bear populations continue to grow and thrive"--Behind the Black. And have been doing so for the past decade.
                        • "Progressives: the New Race Realists"--Those Who Can See. Actions speak louder than words, we are told, and that certainly proves true when it comes to how progressives and liberals see "persons of color." After noting statistics on lower mean intelligence and academic achievement among blacks, the author notes that the most segregated schools are in those bastians of so-called liberal progressivism, New York City and San Francisco, and how no liberal dares send their children to public schools in Washington D.C. He also cites several liberals who have voiced that it is discriminatory to hold blacks to the same expectations as whites and Asians. In fact, this lack of expectation is locked into the requirements under certain mandatory testing requiring fewer blacks to reach proficiency and the lowered admission requirements for blacks into college, law school and medical school. 
                        The author goes on to address this same difference in relation to expectations in the job market, crime and judicial system, and even immigration (noting, for instance, that progressives believe it is inhumane to send an African back to his country of origin).
                        • "The Ageless and the Useless"--L.M. Sacasas. We are fast approaching two singularities: (i) "the moment when the first artificial general intelligence (AGI) becomes a superintelligence and introduces change to this planet on a scale and at a speed which un-augmented humans cannot comprehend"; but before that, (ii) an economic singularity when improved robotics and artificial intelligence eliminates most jobs. The latter will certainly result in a very small elite that are extremely wealthy and the rest who are no longer needed economically or militarily. Based on research we are seeing today, it is not farfetched to believe that medical science and computer science (using the latter term broadly) will result in some form of extended life span or even immortality ... for the wealthy. But what about the rest? Quoting historian Yuval Noah Harari:
                                 “I don’t have a solution, and the biggest question maybe in economics and politics of the coming decades will be what to do with all these useless people. I don’t think we have an economic model for that. My best guess, which is just a guess, is that food will not be a problem. With that kind of technology, you will be able to produce food to feed everybody. The problem is more boredom, and what to do with people, and how will they find some sense of meaning in life when they are basically meaningless, worthless.
                                   My best guess at present is a combination of drugs and computer games as a solution for most … it’s already happening. Under different titles, different headings, you see more and more people spending more and more time, or solving their inner problems with drugs and computer games, both legal drugs and illegal drugs. But this is just a wild guess.”
                              However, that is not a given. For instance, Sacasas also quotes Harari as admitting that once the economic singularity is reached, and you have masses of "useless people", it is not a given that mass medicine will continue. It is not a given that the "useless people" will even be kept around. In fact, given the current state of environmental ideology and its hostility to any environmental impact by humans, I can see the immortal elite deciding to eliminate the "useless people" for the sake of the planet. It may not be Skynet that we should fear, but the likes of Bill Gates or Elon Musk.

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