Tuesday, January 26, 2016

A Quick Run Around the Web--January 26, 2016

  • The video above is from Survival Lilly, and entitled "How to Make a Net Trap."
  • "Gun collector faces jail over illegal arsenal"--The Daily Telegraph. Facing up to 5 years of prison for ... wait for it ... an "arsenal" of airsoft guns. Yes, toy guns. This is where the insanity of gun control leads.
  • "Rogers New Mini-Red Dot Sight Mount"--The Firearms Blog. Basically, it is a short section of picatinny rail that is, in turn, mounted on a quick-release mount to attach to a picatinny rail. So, if you have a mini-red dot sight designed to clamp onto a picatinny rail, but is not a quick release mount, this adds the quick release feature. My concern is how high it would sit, since essentially you have stacked picatinny rails.
  • "Self-Defense Tip: Be Ready for a Gun Grab"--The Truth About Guns. The article builds off a recently reported incident where a woman drew a gun on two assailants, and one of the assailant promptly grabbed her gun away. The author goes on to recommend that you learn methods of weapon retention. Unfortunately, it doesn't go into specifics on methods of retention. Like many things involving self-defense, this is something where you are better off learning through the physicality of practicing with someone else. (There are instructors, including Greg Ellifritz, that provide these courses to the public). One basic thing, though. If you carry in a holster on your strong side, turn your body slightly so your strong side hip is behind you, putting more distance between the aggressor and the firearm and your strong hand (you can use your weak hand to block or deflect a grab from the aggressor). This is also a reason why you should not be married to one--and only one--method or style of drawing and shooting your firearm. At short distances, there is no clear demarcation between hand-to-hand combat and using a firearm; it is a continuum. 
  • "Zika Virus: Two Cases Suggest It Could Be Spread Through Sex"--New York Times
Zika virus has already been linked to brain damage in babies and paralysis in adults. Now scientists are facing another ominous possibility: that on rare occasions, the virus might be transmitted through sex.
    The evidence is very slim; only a couple of cases have been described in medical literature. But a few experts feel the prospect is disturbing enough that federal health officials should inform all travelers, not just pregnant women, of the potential danger.
      Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, however, say the evidence is insufficient to warrant such a warning. While the two instances suggest a “theoretical risk” of sexual transmission, they note the primary vector is clearly mosquitoes.
        Dr. Márcio Nehab, a pediatrician and infectious disease specialist at Fiocruz, a research institute in Rio de Janeiro, said that much more research was needed to be done to definitively prove that Zika can be transmitted during sex.
          Farmers and fumigators in Argentina are running out of time as they scramble to control the country’s worst plague of locusts in more than half a century, officials warned on Monday.
            The provincial authorities and Senasa, the government’s agricultural inspection agency, have intensified their efforts to exterminate swarms of the insects in the dry forests of northern Argentina. But their attempts might not be enough to prevent the locusts from developing into a flying throng in the coming days — when they will then threaten to devour crops like sunflowers and cotton, and grasslands for cattle grazing.
              “It’s the worst explosion in the last 60 years,” Diego Quiroga, the agriculture agency’s chief of vegetative protection, said in a telephone interview. “It’s impossible to eradicate; the plague has already established itself. We’re just acting to make sure it’s the smallest it can be and does the least damage possible.”
                Small pockets of locusts, which first appeared last June, at the start of winter in the Southern Hemisphere, have spread across an area of northern Argentina about the size of Delaware. The mild and rainy winter here created comfortable breeding conditions for the locusts; their surge outpaced the ability of the authorities to control the spread of the insects.
                  Farmers last year reported locust clouds that were more than four miles long and nearly two miles high, said Juan Pablo Karnatz, a representative for the Province of Santiago del Estero at the Rural Confederations of Argentina, which represents more than 100,000 farmers here.
                    In the past five years, Senasa, the agricultural agency, has seen an increase in the numbers of insects that can destroy crops — like fruit flies that threaten citrus groves — as a result of warmer, wetter winters.
                      Mr. Quiroga pointed to a warning last November by the Food and Agriculture Organization, a United Nations agency, which said climate change would contribute to locust plagues in Africa. “There is clearly an impact in our country, too,” he said. “We are definitely being affected.”
                        Many farmers here blame the coming plague on the previous government of former President Cristina Fern├índez de Kirchner, saying officials failed to take last year’s warnings seriously enough. There is no study yet that shows climate change has led to the increase in locust populations, said Paola Carrizo, a professor of agronomy at the University of Buenos Aires, explaining that a more likely cause was insufficient pest control by Senasa.
                          ... Until a few days ago the Italian peninsula was a transit channel for tens of thousands of desperate migrants en route to the countries of Northern Europe, yet now these same migrants are finding themselves stranded in Italy because of closed borders to the north. Overnight, Italy has moved from being a passageway to a dead end.
                            Six countries— Germany, Austria, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Slovenia—have suspended the treaty for two years, and others appear ready to follow them. In many respects, Schengen no longer exists.
                              With the recent closure of the Austrian border, the border points have already begun to be besieged, and authorities are expecting a migrant tent city to form there. Moreover, when good weather returns, they warn, arrivals could increase tenfold.
                              But now drug users are making their own meth in small batches using a faster, cheaper and much simpler method with ingredients that can be carried in a knapsack and mixed on the run. The "shake-and-bake" approach has become popular because it requires a relatively small number of pills of the decongestant pseudoephedrine — an amount easily obtained under even the toughest anti-meth laws that have been adopted across the nation to restrict large purchases of some cold medication.  
                              * * *  
                              The pills are crushed, combined with some common household chemicals and then shaken in the soda bottle. No flame is required.

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