Tuesday, June 26, 2018

June 26, 2018 -- A Quick Run Around the Web

The host of this video suggests that people in rural communities would be better focused on threats within their own communities rather than groups living dozens or even hundreds of miles away.

  • It's Tuesday! A new Woodpile Report.
  • "BEYOND HARDBALL - Modern .45 Loads"--SWAT Magazine. The author notes that "[t]he .45 ACP has struggled to retain its perch in the JHP era since standardized ballistic testing using the FBI standards became commonplace. The .45’s large frontal area works against it in the tests, typically allowing impressive expansion or impressive penetration, but usually not at the same time and not through barriers." He seems to like the Honeybadger round, a "non-expanding [bullet], relying on machined flutes in the bullet nose to create a wound cavity." Rather, "[t]he concept is that fluid is redirected at such speeds as to create damage in what is essentially its wake as the copper projectile drives deep." The author indicates that wound cavities in ballistic gel is comparable to a .357 Magnum hunting load. I find the idea behind such bullets to be interesting, but I would like to see more than just ballistic gel results. We are all aware of the concept of "gaming" something--adopting techniques or characteristics that are designed to work well in competition or testing that don't actually work well in the real world. My nagging concern is that these types of bullets are designed to do well in ballistic gelatin, which is a homogeneous, non-fibrous medium, but that the designs won't translate well to bones, sinew, muscle, etc.
  • "21 Terms Every Knife-Lover Should Know"--Gear Patrol.  Specialized discussion requires specialized language and terms.
  • "You Can't Defend Yourself Any More"--MacYoung's Musings. In a society where "violence is never the answer," it is hard to justify to a jury using violence to defend yourself. MacYoung writes:
        ... I have some really bad news. I’m not being political because I want to. I’m doing it because politics have come to violence. But far worse, your ‘right’ to defend yourself is damned near gone.
            Gone not like a Great White Shark that eats half of you in a single bite, but gone like a piranha feeding frenzy. Death comes from countless little bites from many sources. This time though the bites have been taken out over the years. Some of them are political, some are legal, some are ideological and a thunderin’ herd of them are bureaucratic (ass covering and careerism). Now if that isn’t bad enough, there’s a rise in behaviors that lead to violence. Putting it bluntly you’re losing your right to defend yourself at the same time there’s a growing need for it.
      He continues:
        It’s a short step from believing that ["violence never solved anything"] to believing that all violence is wrong. Unfortunately, many people haven’t just taken that step, but did a running leap. Despite all the wailing and gnashing of teeth about how our society glorifies violence, most people are really uncomfortable about the subject. To the point, they don’t believe in self-defense, but view all violence as bad and only ‘bad people’ do it. This is especially true, if they’ve drank the Kool-Aid that all violence is abuse (excepting their own, of course.)
          Read the whole thing.
          • "We Hate The Beretta M9, But Why?"--The Load Out Room. The author discusses why the Beretta M9 is such a great design and great pistol. And notes: "People will talk and talk about what gun would have done this or that better than the M9. I highly doubt that any other pistol would do much better, seeing how the military treats its gear." I think it is a great gun, but the grip is just a tad too big for me.
          • "Buffer Stuff: Keep The AR Cycling Happily"--Guns Magazine. A discussion of the different types of buffers and springs out there. The author explains:
                   Carbine-length systems, in particular, can produce problems. Essentially, if too much gets in too soon, the bolt will unlock too soon as the system begins moving the bolt carrier to the rear. Then, the cartridge case gets yanked while it’s still expanded inside the chamber. This creates the “extraction” problems common to carbines (16″ or shorter barrel). It’s not an extraction problem, really, but a timing issue.
                     Additionally, an overdose of gas creates overly high-bolt carrier velocity going back against the buffer. It can get so high, and again this is most symptomatic in carbines, that the carrier will “bounce” off its rearward stopping point and rebound overly quickly, going back ahead. Sometimes this appears like a “short stroke” or weak function but its cause is actually just the opposite. Overrides (failure to pick up a round from the magazine) and failures to lock back against the bolt catch or stop can result. The real issue is the carrier is outrunning the other part systems, the magazine specifically.
                        For people who argued that AR/ 5.56 stuff is much more available I am not so sure. There are a lot of AKMs floating around and even more 7.62x39. The reason I say that is it was so cheap for so long and is still fairly cheap. So an average guy who has an AK/ SKS is probably more likely to have more ammo than an average guy with an AR. Also fundamentally planning on getting resupplied with gun stuff during a major long term disaster is probably unrealistic. 
                          For a local/ regional event you aren't going to be shooting much, if at all. Even folks in the craziest regional events like the Roof Koreans in the LA riots or folks in Hurricane Katrina weren't getting in a ton of crazy movie gun fights shooting all over the place. A pretty standard load out of 3x15 rd pistol mags and 7x 30 rd rifle mags would be plenty. 
                  • "Skill Set: Things Most People Never Learn To Do"--The Tactical Wire. The author claims that most people of the gun never learn a proper trigger press, never learn how to safely manipulate the firearm (loading, unloading, etc.), and never learn how to efficiently draw and shoot their weapon. He also contends:
                  Most people who carry never think about, study or practice responding to an attack.  Yes, they practice shooting, but shooting is a small part of the whole response.  The fundamentals of responding to a threat are:  move, communicate, Use cover, shooting (if necessary) and thinking.  None of these responses are natural or instinctive.  It’s going to take plenty of practice to formulate and initiate a timely response.
                  Basic gun manipulation and drawing is mostly a matter of practice, and can be learned by having someone show you the ropes, watching videos, and so forth. Responding to an attack with a firearm is a different level. It is something that can be learned through significant research on the subject combined with martial arts training or experience, but is most efficiently and efficaciously learned with the assistance of an experienced and knowledgeable instructor.
                  • Maybe it would be more humane to separate children from their "parents": 
                  • "Mexico's Shame; Abuse of Children"--Banderas News (2010). The article reports that "[a]ccording to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Mexico ranks first in rates of physical violence, sexual abuse and homicide of children younger than 14[.]" Also, "Mexico ranks 2nd in money generated through sex trafficking of minors, reporting US $24 billion per year. Thailand ranks first in child pornography, while Mexico, unfortunately, ranks 2nd."
                  • "Child Sex Abuse In Mexico Increases In 2014, Study Finds"--Los Angeles Times (Aug. 4, 2014). From the article: "In the first quarter of 2014 allegations of sexual abuse against minors in Mexico increased 73 percent, compared to 2013, according to data from 24 states, according to research."
                            Texas-based Southwest Key Programs has taken in roughly $1 billion in federal contracts since the Obama administration, and is expected to receive about $500 million this year to house and provide services for immigrant children, according to reports. 
                              And Southwest officials receive significant compensation for their efforts. WQAD reported tax filings show Juan Sanchez, the group’s founder and CEO, received nearly $1.5 million in 2016 - nearly twice the previous year’s salary, of $786,822. His wife, Jennifer, vice president of Southwest Key, received about $280,000 in 2015 in total compensation, WQAD reported.
                      • Iran is currently seeing the largest protests since 2012: "Iranians take to streets of Tehran in biggest protests since 2012"--The Independent. Some of the protesters are apparently upset with Iran spending money in foreign wars and to support terrorist organizations: "Iranian Protestors Swarm Streets Chanting, ‘Death to Palestine’"--Washington Free Beacon
                      • China cranks up the printing presses: "China frees up more money as trade war takes shape"--Deutsche Welle. According to the article, "China's central bank has said it will further reduce the reserve requirement ratio for the majority of lenders in the country." In a fractional reserve banking system, it essentially means that the central bank is opening the spigots for banks to create more money. Fractional reserve banking is where a bank can loan out more money than it has on hand (thus creating new money when it makes a loan), reserving (in theory) only the amounts that it needs for average transactions. In practice, central banks place mandatory requirements on the reserve kept by the bank to prevent a bank from overlending. Reducing the reserve amounts means that banks can loan more (i.e., create more money), increasing the overall money supply (and devaluing the currency in the process). 
                      • Paging Colin Flaherty: "Shocking moment four teenagers coax a man out of his car, punch him and leave him unconscious on the ground"--Daily Mail. Watching the video, you realize that the headline is intentionally deceptive. The video shows the black teens approach the car, spreading out around it. While one teen opens the driver's door, another goes to the other side to open the passenger side door. The driver gets out to deal with the teens on his side of the car, while the teen that entered through the passenger side scoots through the car to come out behind the driver and sucker punch him. The teens then steal the car. A couple points: (1) even if you are in your car and waiting for someone, lock the doors; and (2) if you see black teens lurking about, you probably should be prepared for a possible assault and/or robbery.
                      • Don't worry, its for your safety: "THE WIRETAP ROOMS: The NSA’s Hidden Spy Hubs in Eight U.S. Cities"--The Intercept. AT&T works closely with the NSA to ensure that not only can it spy on AT&T's domestic customers, but also AT&T's overseas partners. 
                      • "Army Is Spending Half a Billion to Train Soldiers to Fight Underground"--Military.com. Not just service tunnels, sewers, subways and underground portions of large buildings, but the massive underground bases and cities that some nations have built. "An assessment last year estimates that there are about 10,000 large-scale underground military facilities around the world that are intended to serve as subterranean cities, an Army source, who is not cleared to talk to the press, told Military.com." You can download a copy of the referenced manual, TC 3.21-50, here (PDF). It's not as detailed as you might expect, but it is interesting to me that illustrations appear to show units maneuvering with at least two men using ballistic shields to provide cover.
                      • Interesting: "Why Did Book of Mormon Authors Use Colophons?"--Meridian Magazine. Colophons are certifications inserted at the beginning or end of texts to identify the author (or scribe) and his qualifications for writing the material. A modern analogue are the introductory paragraphs to an affidavit that identify the affiant and the grounds for their knowledge, or the certification by a notary. 
                      • A reminder that we live in the 21st Century: "The 'stealth sheets' that can hide soldiers and even vehicles from infrared cameras"--Daily Mail. The article describes the material as about the thickness of 10 sheets of paper, and states that "[i]t's made out of bendable silicon and can hide about 94% of the infrared light it encounters." It continues:
                               [R]esearchers used black silicon to make the sheet, which is created by harvesting silicon crystals on a silicon wafer, according to New Scientist.
                                  This creates the appearance of a 'forest' of silicon needles, called nanowires, which reflect very little light. 
                                    The nanowires are created using tiny particles of silver, which are etched into a silicon wafer. 
                                     Air particles were then built into the black silicon to keep it from overheating. 
                                        The light waves bounce back and forth between the needles, which prevents light from escaping. 

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