Wednesday, October 17, 2018

October 17, 2018 -- A Quick Run Around The Web

"Etna Tsunami Impact Analysis"--Suspicious Observers (2-1/2 min.)
There have been reports recently indicating that the east slope of the Mt. Etna volcano on the eastern seaboard of Sicily has been sliding, and it is possible that it could slough off completely given a strong enough earthquake. This video includes some computer modeling of what tsunami effects could be expected if the mountain side did slide into the ocean. It would result in catastrophic tsunami waves along those coast surrounding the central Mediterranean Sea.

        While it’s true that evil can strike anywhere, anytime, the reality is that it strikes more often in some places and under some circumstances than others. Cancer, too, can strike anyone anywhere, and yet there are certain behaviors (and genetic predispositions) which make it more likely with some people than with others. The smart ones alter their behaviors to avoid both evil and cancer, while simultaneously understanding that there is no such thing as complete protection. 
           By assessing our overall risk, and the risk of specific behaviors and activities, we can take reasonable, prudent steps to reduce the chances of being victims of either cancer or evil. We can’t absolutely eliminate the chance, but we can significantly alter our own probability of facing either (and more.)
             I suspect that part of the reason it is not discussed more often is because telling someone that their behavior needs to be changed smacks of judging and moralizing. So the most we generally do is recite the general rules of "don't do stupid things with stupid people in stupid places," and leave it to the listener to determine what is stupid. That's easier than telling the young woman to stop going to bars on weekends and getting so drunk she can't remember what happened.
               This has been about 20 years ago, so I don't remember the web-site or even know if it is still up, but a police officer with, I believe, either the Memphis or Nashville police departments, had a web-site where you could go through a list of risk factors clicking "yes" or "no" and it would generate a score showing your risk of being a victim of a violent crime or being murdered. I don't know if the scoring was correct, but that was the least important part of the completing the form; rather, it listed some very specific behaviors that put you at risk, or, in some cases, reduced your risk. 
        • Free downloadable targets from Targetz.com.
        • "Crimson Trace Lasersaddle LS-250: First Impressions"--The Firearm Blog. This is a low profile laser sight designed to fit the Mossberg Shockwave firearms, fitting over the top rear of the receiver and projecting a laser along the right-hand side of the weapon. MSRP is $169 for the red laser version and $219 for the green laser version. Although the article makes no mention, I presume that Crimson Trace would also have one in the works for the Remington Tac-14. 
        • "Comparison of Pocket Semi-Automatic Handguns Overall Length of Less Than Six Inches - .32 ACP or Larger"--Mouseguns.com. This is a PDF chart showing the relative sizes of small handguns, overlayed with an outline of a man's hand. It also has weight and other data on each of the models of firearms.
        • "A Great Shot Timer at a Great Price"--The Truth About Guns. This is a just a press release for the RangeTech shot timer. Most shot timers fall into two categories: purpose built shot timers that work great, but can be bulky and generally cost more than $100 or more; or shot timer apps for a cell phone that are questionable as to their performance. The RangeTech is interesting because it offers a hardware solution to bridge the gap between the two categories--they have a small device that listens for the shots, but interfaces with a smart phone for controls, displays, and so on. Looking at their website, they have two models available. The first is a version designed to physically plug into the headphone jack on an Android device, and which costs $30, or a blu-tooth enabled device that can interface with Android or Apple devices and sells for $65. The latter has a clip so you can attach it to a pocket or lapel. I just have a regular shot timer and haven't used one of these, but it looks like an interesting concept.
        • Don't anyone tell the Gun Plumber: "$500 Homebuilt AK Wins First Place At Red Oktober Rifle Match"--The Firearm Blog. The owner of the weapon relates:
          This contraption was put together kind of last minute.  It was built in one day and probably not the ideal way.  The trunions are welded in instead of riveted like on a proper AK.  I TIG welded the rear and a buddy of mine did the front, we were comparing welding techniques and not taking things too seriously.  I cut the barrel down to 14.5″ behind the front sight and rethreaded it to 1/2-28 so it would accept an AR15 muzzle brake.  I had an early version of a 223/556 muzzle brake that I helped test sitting around and threw it on, permanently of course.  The barrel ended up being too thin for the Magpul handguard so I wrapped aluminum foil around it to provide “proper fit”. To finish it off, some high heat BBQ spray paint was applied to the gun.
                    Vegetable yields have fallen by as much as 50 per cent in some parts of the UK, following a year of extreme weather events.
                     Farmers have warned of the likelihood of shortages of major crops including potatoes, onions, carrots, leeks, parsnips, cabbages and Brussels sprouts, with consumers and retailers expected to see biggest impacts in the new year.
                Blame has been directed at an unusually cold winter, wet spring, and hot summer.
                • "Ancestral Hard Times"--Left Wing Survivalist. The author was perusing a survival site that primarily has lists of things ("Top 10 ...") and one of the lists was different ways that our grandparents or great-grandparents coped with hard times. What struck the author was that most of these were variants on simplifying their lives: i.e., they focused on what they needed, not what they wanted; they fixed things or did without rather than buying the latest and greatest; they were willing to wait; etc. Worth the read.


                The international alliance and organizations put into place after WWII, and designed to fight communism, are obsolete. The consequence is what BPS refers to a geopolitical recession--a pulling back or decline of these international organizations.
                “We see a cooling trend,” said Martin Mlynczak of NASA’s Langley Research Center. “High above Earth’s surface, near the edge of space, our atmosphere is losing heat energy. If current trends continue, it could soon set a Space Age record for cold.”
                (H/t Anonymous Conservative).
                Forty percent of all births in the U.S. now occur outside of wedlock, up from 10 percent in 1970, according to an annual report released on Wednesday by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the largest international provider of sexual and reproductive health services. That number is even higher in the European Union.
                Also, "[t]he average age an American woman has her first child is now 27, up from 22 in 1970." The article indicates that the high out-of-wedlock births is at least partly due to government welfare programs for single-mothers, especially in Europe. Turchin would associate this with declining well-being for non-elites.

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