Thursday, November 9, 2017

November 9, 2017 -- A Quick Run Around the Web

An abandoned pachinko parlor in Saitama Prefecture, Japan. From "From abandoned strip clubs to crumbling love hotels: Fascinating photographs capture the darkly enchanting side to modern Japan"--Daily Mail. Also check out the following: "Abandoned streets, books left open on classroom desks and supermarket shelves still full of food: Filmmakers in hazmat suits explore the ghost town of Fukushima six years after the nuclear disaster"--Daily Mail.

  • "Black Aces Tactical Mag Fed Shockwave 12 Gauge Shotgun"--The Firearms Blog. This 12 gauge firearm (not a shotgun) is based on the Mossberg action, but uses a 5-round detachable magazine, and will accept a magazine tube spike (meaning you can stab at people with it as well, which is handy if you have run out of ammunition). MSRP is $499.
  • "Democrats propose ban on assault weapons"--New York Post. Sponsored by the usual suspects. (Update: Some more details as to the ban; it will prohibit  "assault weapons" that use a detachable magazine and one or more "military characteristics" including pistol grip, threaded barrel, front grip, folding or telescoping stock).
  • Related: "Why Bringing A Gun To Church Is A Pretty Good Idea"--The Federalist. The author notes: "... I would point out that I can’t find an example of a single example of an accidental fatality by a gun-owning parishioner during a service at a church (or temple or mosque). Perhaps someone can point one out to me. I can think of at least two incidents off the top of my head in which church parishioners likely stopped a massacre because they had guns."
  • "Michigan Senate OKs concealed pistol carry in schools, churches, day care centers"--Detroit Free Press. This is not for all concealed carry license holders, but only for those that obtain an endorsement after undergoing additional training and qualifications (essentially the equivalent of an enhanced permit for my Idaho readers).
  • Steve's Pages's resource: a collection of downloadable manuals for firearms and some accessories.
  • "Video: Using a SteriPen"--Doom and Bloom Survival Medicine. These are the ultraviolet light "pens" used to kill bacteria and other pathogens in water. Note that these do no remove chemical or particulate contaminants.
  • "Bicycle Generators"--Blue Collar Prepping. The primary use of such a device is to recharge a batteries (e.g., a deep cycle battery, or charging electronic devices). The article describes the basic set up for such a system. This may be a good alternative to those who question whether they will be able to use a solar recharging system, or who want the better opsec that such a system offers over other charging systems.
  • "Sally Lunn Bread"--All Things Provident. This recipe uses baking powder instead of yeast, and the author indicates that it has a texture similar to corn bread. Check out this site because the author has lots of recipes that are intended to be made using your food storage.
  • "Concealed Weapons"--Firearms History, Technology & Development. For those interested in firearms history or information on firearms that is off the beaten path, this site is well worth browsing. This particular article caught my attention because it is about historic firearms that were designed to not look like firearms: e.g., a couple types of cane-gun and a palm pistol, and a few weapons designed for spy agencies during the Cold War.
  • "The Top Pistols Used by Today's IDPA Shooters"--Shooting Sports USA. The Glock 34 tops the list, followed a distant second by the S&W M&P Pro. Interestingly, the Glock 19 is more popular than the Glock 17, although I guess that if you are going to go full size Glock, you might as well get the extra barrel length of the Glock 34. Not surprisingly, revolvers are little used.
  • "9x39mm: AR-15 for Moose?"--The Firearms Blog. A few days ago, Nathaniel F. looked at Russia's subsonic round, the 9x39mm, and compared it against its American counterpart, the .300 Blackout. In this article, he examines the possible performance of the 9x39 if it was loaded with supersonic hunting rounds. He believes a 200 grain bullet would provide good ballistic performance (both trajectory and terminal) out to 100-yards; and a lighter 150 grain bullet would mimic the ballistics of the .30-30 and 7.62x30 out to 200 yards. 
  • "Handloading Ammo: Basic Procedures to Follow"--Shooting Illustrated. A nice checklist of all the steps you may need to follow when reloading ammunition. Trimming is generally not necessary for pistol or revolver ammunition; and some of the steps included are for when working up new loads.
  • "CorBon DPX Ammunition : Current State of Affairs : UPDATE"--Ammo Land. CorBon had contracted with Barnes Bullets to manufacture the bullets used in CorBon's DPX ammunition. But after Barnes was bought out by Remington, it broke off its business relationships with CorBon. This is the first I had heard of Remington buying Barnes. In any event, CorBon is currently tooling up to produce its DPX bullets in-house.
  • "Troubleshooting Rifle Accuracy"--American Rifleman. It may just be a bad barrel, but more likely it has something to do with the scope (or its mount), the bedding or actions screws, ammunition, or you. 

Other Stuff:
       Over the weekend, Saudi Arabia detained dozens of high-profile figures, including 11 princes and dozens of former ministers, in a new anti-corruption probe headed by the kingdom's powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS).
           Saudi officials say the detainments are about getting rid of corruption, while some analysts argue it represents the latest step in Mohammed bin Salman's efforts to consolidate power in order to continue his plans to overhaul the country's economy.
    • "The New World Order is dead"--Don Surber. Everything that Bush Sr. sought to achieve, as outlined in his September 11, 1990 "New World Order" speech has come to naught. The Middle-East, in particular, has sunk the whole thing. Saudi Arabia is rightfully concerned that Iran will use its nuclear weapons against the Kingdom, and is seeking to counter Iran's threat, part of which, ironically, will involve closer cooperation with Israel, and less reliance on the United States (at least as to providing boots on the ground), and require Saudi Arabia to obtain its own nuclear weapons (thanks Obama!). The issue I see is that the Saudi war in Yemen has exposed the Saudi military as largely incompetent. It will have to turn to mercenary forces, at least at the outset. 
            Some of Saudi Arabia's richest families are in talks with banks and asset management companies to shift their fortunes so that their money and properties are not captured by the anti-corruption sweep. 
              Saudi Arabia's attorney general says the kingdom has called in 208 people for questioning in the probe, estimating hundreds of billions of dollars were misused through embezzlement and corruption in past decades.
                An estimated 1,700 bank accounts have been frozen and those in the firing line risk having their assets and properties seized by the government as it attempts to flush out fraud in Saudi Arabia.
          The Saudi government has estimated that it will need $2 Trillion to reform its economy so it is not dependent on oil sales and foreign labor. $800 Billion is a nice down-payment.
          • "Saudi Arabia says Lebanon declares war, deepening crisis"--Reuters. The article reports: "Saudi Arabia accused Lebanon on Monday of declaring war against it because of aggression by the Iran-backed Lebanese Shi‘ite group Hezbollah, a dramatic escalation of a crisis threatening to destabilize the tiny Arab country"; and "Lebanon has been thrust to the center of regional rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran since the Saudi-allied Lebanese politician Saad al-Hariri quit as prime minister on Saturday, blaming Iran and Hezbollah in his resignation speech." On a side note, 40 years ago, no one would have described Lebanon as an Arab country because it was a majority Christian country and very moderate--Beirut was often likened to Monte Carlo.
          • "Column: Saudi purge takes kingdom into unpredictable new era: Kemp"--Reuters. The author describes in some detail the traditional balance of power in the Kingdom between the descendants of the original King Abdulazziz, with different factions (or branches of the family, if you will) controlling different important government positions. However, with these purges, "[f]or the first time, all three power ministries (defence, interior and National Guard) are under the direct control of one branch of the royal family." This article provides a good context to what is happening and a possible why.
          • "Syria: Rearranging The Chess Board For The Next War"--Strategy Page. The author sees the next step in the Syrian conflict as being between Iran on one side and an Israeli/Saudi alliance on the other. The article also notes that Israel's Druze population (a minor Islamic sect that combined Islam with Greek philosophy) has been pushing the Israeli government to do more to protect the Druze population in Syria (which, by the way, has also been assisting Israel in its strikes into Syria). 
          • "Marriage strike paradox."--Dalrock. The age of first marriage is increasing. Although some have argued (including Dr. Helen Smith) that this is a result of men "going on strike" and refusing to marry, Dalrock believes it is the opposite: that women are delaying marriage in order to "live it up" in their twenties before settling down. He explains:
                    ... Nearly all women are still able to marry. If we could break this data out for just White women the percentage who marry by 45 would be even higher, around 90%!  Moreover, the change we are seeing is almost entirely a delay in the age of marriage. If men were driving this change, it would mean that men were refusing to marry young hot women, and insisting on marrying clapped out party girls instead. Even if you stipulated that this was indeed what was happening, insisting on an older, less hot, less chaste, more demanding wife doesn’t count as a “strike” in my book.
                        What we are seeing instead is women continuing to push out the age of marriage. As they are doing this, they are changing the signal young men receive regarding how to be sexually successful. Beta Bucks (BB) used to be a very effective strategy for an 18 year old young man. He might have to wait a few years, but he could see the plan working for his 3-5 year older bother and his friend’s older brother. Now a young man would have to look to men 10-15 years older to see examples of the BB model finally paying off. Meanwhile, they see the Alpha F**** (AF) model working all around them. AF gets rewarded, and BB is not only not rewarded for a decade or more, but our whole society (especially Christians) despises husbands and fathers,  the epitome of the BB model.  This is a very powerful message, and an unmistakable one.
                Read the whole thing.
                           On the hustings President Zuma likes to sing one of the ANC “liberation” songs, which includes the words: “We are going to shoot them with machine guns, they are going to run…. The cabinet will shoot them, with the machine gun…. shoot the Boer, we are going to hit them, they are going to run.” The country is considered one of the least lawful on earth, boasting some of the world’s highest rates of violent crime, with numbers of dead and wounded approaching what might be considered a low-grade civil war. According to Genocide Watch, the murder rate among South African white farmers is four times higher than among South Africans en masse. That rate increased every month after President Zuma sang his song, for as long as accurate records are available. (The police have been instructed to stop referring to race in their reports.) Being a white farmer in South Africa now rates as one of the most dangerous jobs in the world.
                             But despite this, across the full media and political spectrum the country appeared to be in a celebratory mood. The reason was that two white Afrikaner farmers, Theo Jackson and Willem Oosthuizen, were sentenced to 14 and 11 years in jail, respectively, for attempted murder.
                                 In their defense they told the court their farms were failing because of trespass and theft and the police were inept and lackadaisical. On the day of the incident the “victim,” Victor Mlotshwa, according to the two accused, was in possession of stolen copper cable and, when approached, threatened to kill the families of the two farmers and burn their farms down. Mlotshwa was wrestled into a coffin and told he was to be incinerated. No such thing happened and the defendants insisted they were simply trying to scare him. But that was enough for the full force of the law to be unleashed, and Judge Sheila Mphahlele was in full, furious flight. She called the attack “inhumane and disgusting,” and handed down an outrageously harsh sentence. Justice Minister Michael Masutha was fulsome in his approval. “We believe that this strong sentence will deter would-be hate crime perpetrators in our society,” he said.
                               So why the fear to name names before? Part of it might be the steps that the abusers were using to stifle anyone that might bring accusations. The Anonymous Conservative discusses this in his take on a report that Weinstein was using very expensive and very covert private intelligence firms--Kroll and Black Cube--to investigate and discredit potential accusers and reporters.
                                 This new source of energy, according to researchers Marek Karliner and Jonathan Rosner, comes from the fusion of subatomic particles known as quarks. These particles are usually produced as a result of colliding atoms that move at high speeds within the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), where these component parts split from their parent atoms. It doesn’t stop there, however, as these disassociated quarks also tend to collide with one another and fuse into particles called baryons.
                                   It is this fusion of quarks that Karliner and Rosner focused on, as they found that this fusion is capable of producing energy even greater than what’s produced in hydrogen fusion. In particular, they studied how fused quarks configure into what’s called a doubly-charmed baryon. Fusing quarks require 130 MeV to become doubly-charmed baryons, which, in turn, releases energy that’s 12 MeV more energy. Turning their calculations to heavier bottom quarks, which need 230 MeV to fuse, they found that a resulting baryon could produce approximately 138 MeV of net energy—about eight times more than what hydrogen fusion releases.
                          I doubt that we would be able to leapfrog regular fusion to doing something like this, but it offers an alternative (and middle ground) between nuclear fusion and matter-anti-matter power systems if it is feasible. 


                          1. RE: Why Bringing A Gun To Church Is A Pretty Good Idea. The author observes: "I would point out that I can’t find an example of a single example of an accidental fatality by a gun-owning parishioner during a service at a church (or temple or mosque)."

                            Not true. Mosques in the Middle East (and probably a few in Western countries) are used to store weapons and explosives. Mosques have been known to explode for unexplained reasons.

                            1. To be fair to the author, the scope of his article was limited to the United States of America.