Thursday, May 4, 2017

May 4, 2017 -- A Quick Run Around the Web

Yes, if it is a hammerless (or shrouded hammer) revolver: 
TFB TV (7 min.)


Firearms/Self-Defense:
All my pistol practice is to the face/neck area.  I target the area we call "Center Of Face" or COF for short.  I no longer worry about center of mass chest shots unless they are truly, completely unexpected, reactive shooting events filled with extreme surprise and close range emergency movement. And even then...my objective is to achieve a face shot as soon as possible. If there is even a tenth of a degree of preparation or proactive process, its a face/neck shot immediately.
  • Must read: "Man Testifies Against Gang Member Who Shot Him, Gang Kills Him"--Anonymous Conservative. The relevant background, set out in more detail in the linked article, is that a businessman in Charlotte, NC, was going to testify against the members of the United Blood Nation (UBN) gang which had tried to rob him. Thinking that with him dead, the case would be dropped, the gang reconnoitered and killed the man. I'm not going to try to summarize it, but the Anonymous Conservative has some excellent IMHO tips and suggestions for recognizing and responding to such reconnaissance and a targeted hit. One point, however, sticks out:
Notice how his primary solution is to buy more guns. Guns are great, but you also need information to alert you to the attacker’s approach, and a plan to disrupt the surveillance on you. If you don’t see their attack coming, and if they are able to easily surveil you and plan an easy approach to attack you, your guns will be of no use. Guns are great, but with intel-gathering, if you do things right you will never need them and if you do things wrong, they may very likely be of little use.
Read the whole thing.


Other Stuff:
  • Related: "Venezuela Is Heading for a Soviet-Style Collapse"--Foreign Policy. A look at how a country so rich in natural resources--especially oil--could be facing such economic ruin. Looking for a historic precedent, the author looks back at the Soviet Union and its collapse shortly after a steep decline in oil prices:
           But the deeper problem for the Soviet Union wasn’t the oil price collapse; it’s what came before. In his book Collapse of an Empire, Russia’s great post-Soviet reformer Yegor Gaidar pointed out that during the long preceding oil boom, Soviet policymakers thought that they could walk on water and that the usual laws of economic gravity did not apply to them. Soviet policymakers didn’t bother developing a theory to make sense of their spending. They didn’t even bother paying attention to their results. The math seemed to work out, so they just assumed there was a good reason.
             This is as true of the current Venezuelan leaders as it was of the Soviet leaders. The Venezuelan government, though it doesn’t claim to be full-fledged in its devotion to Marxism-Leninism, has been pursuing as absurd an economic policy mix as its Soviet predecessor. It has insisted for years on maintaining drastic price controls on a wide range of basic goods, including food staples such as meat and bread, for which it pays enormous subsidies. Nonetheless the Venezuelan government, like the Soviet Union’s, has always felt it could afford these subsidies because of its oil revenues.
               But as the oil price has fallen by slightly more than half since mid-2014, oil incomes have fallen accordingly. And rather than increase oil production, the Venezuelan government has been forced to watch it decline because of its mismanagement of the dominant state-owned oil company, PDVSA.
        • Islam's reformation: "Egypt and the End of the Secular Middle East"--American Conservative. In the last century, the traditional governments of many Muslim states were replaced with secular governments primarily as a result of a desire to Westernize or by being replaced with Communist/Marxist inspired leaders. These secular governments are being replaced one-by-one by fundamentalist Islamic groups. The author focuses on Egypt, but also notes the transformation in Iraq after Saddam Hussein was overthrown. Although the Egyptian army overthrew the Muslim Brotherhood backed government in Egypt, the growing attacks on Coptic Christians has the potential to undermine Egypt's military government. Writes the author:
                 In the new post-2013 environment, there are multiple reasons why Christians are such a natural target for Islamist terror. ... Given the strength of the Egyptian military and its strong intelligence networks, it is natural for jihadis to choose soft targets—poorly defended places and institutions—where the goal is to kill the maximum number of civilians. Once upon a time, Western tourists would have been the obvious targets of choice, but such visitors are no longer much in evidence. By default, then, Coptic Christian churches and communities are attacked.
                   But Christians have many other virtues as terror targets, fitting as they do into the Islamist global mythology. According to the propaganda vision of ISIS and like-minded groups, such attacks show the guerrillas to be Islamic warriors heroically struggling for the faith against its idolatrous enemies, who are also intimately linked with a corrupt and tyrannical regime. Moreover, anti-Christian terror serves to divide Egypt along religious and sectarian lines while offering the added bonus of infuriating the West. If attacks became sufficiently common, we might expect to see Upper Egypt sliding into overt sectarian conflict as Christian and Muslim militias battled.
                       But another agenda is also at work, as church attacks place Egyptian security forces in a dreadful quandary: How much repression can they properly launch against bloodthirsty terrorism, without appearing to take the side of Christians against Muslims? ...
              • Because Africa was noted for its great universities and public schools prior to colonialism? "Kikwete: 'Africa inherited poor education from colonial masters'"--Deutsche Welle.
              • Hell must have frozen over: "A common talking point about African Americans’ views on crime has been debunked"--Washington Post.  The Washington Post is debunking a favorite leftist argument that the justice system is too harsh when it comes to punishing blacks. From the article:
                •        When black activists and voters protest police shootings of African Americans, their conservative critics often respond that what African Americans should really be protesting is black-on-black crime. 
                         That criticism runs afoul of basic facts. The assumption that African Americans are somehow “soft” on crime is sharply at odds with new scholarship suggesting that, in fact, African Americans have long supported tougher penalties for crime.
                         In his new book, Locking Up Our Own, Yale University Law School Professor James Forman Jr. points out that in national surveys conducted over the past 40 years, African Americans have consistently described the criminal justice system as too lenient. Even in the 2000s, after a large and sustained drop in the crime rate and hundreds of thousands of African Americans being imprisoned, almost two-thirds of African Americans maintained that courts were “not harsh enough” with criminals.
                • I've been travelling on business the past couple of days. Yesterday, while getting a quick bite to eat at a fast food restaurant, I happened to sit at a table next to someone that I discovered was a trucker, talking to someone I presume to be his wife or girlfriend. I hadn't intended to listen in to their conversation and, in fact, was doing some reading while eating my meal. But he was pretty loudly complaining to his companion about trucking companies, and it was hard not to overhear the conversation. His complaints had to do with trucking companies trying to squeeze out more profit by intentionally overloading shipments to transport more cargo on a given trip. The truckers knew it, the companies knew it, but they expected the truckers to simply break the law. Just something to keep in mind.
                • "Why It’s Impossible For Any Group To Be ‘Inclusive’"--The Federalist. Inclusiveness is illogical, violating the laws of identity, non-contradiction, and the excluded middle. Thus:
                To be an inclusive community one must be a community in the first place; and to be a community in the first place, one must have certain definitional criteria that follow the most basic laws of logic. Otherwise, the value of inclusion is, quite literally, nonsense, and, if followed to its (il)logical end, means demanding that communities include even those who would destroy their distinctive identities.

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