Monday, September 30, 2019

Daily Mail: "19 pregnant women are freed from Nigerian 'baby factory' where abducted women were raped so their children could be sold for £1,000 each"

According to the article, a majority of the women were tricked into leaving their home villages with promises of domestic work in Lagos before being raped and impregnated; but others apparently were willing to produce children for the scheme, but believed they were going to be paid. And this from the end of the article: "Baby factories are not uncommon in Nigeria - last week a one-week-old baby was saved from an illegal trade syndicate in Lagos, while another huge raid last year rescued 160 children."

Of course: "Girl Who Claimed Hair Was Cut in Racist Attack Admits She Made It Up"

Article at the National Review. From the article:
Amari Allen described the alleged attack in a September 28 interview with WUSA-TV, a local CBS affiliate. Allen, who is black, accused three white boys of pinning her down, calling her “ugly,” and referring to her hair as “nappy,” before taking out scissors and cutting off some of her dreadlocks.
“We can now confirm that the student who accused three of her classmates of assault has acknowledged that the allegations were false,” school principal Stephen Danish wrote in a letter to parents, before adding that the school feels “tremendous pain for the victims and the hurt on both sides of this conflict. We recognize that we now enter what will be a long season of healing.”

A Monday Medley of Videos (9/30/2019)

The elites want all of your guns, but will keep their armed security.

Japan aligns itself with Germany and Italy. Britain and the Free French again attack neutral Vichy France. Japan fights on in China. And disagreement on how to conduct the air defense of Britain.

Street Smart Self Protection & Weapons ! - RCI (3 min.)
If these are something that interest you, check out the Recoil Magazine article, "Unusual Suspects – Push Daggers" and Thin Blue Florida's "Benchmade Knives 175 Adamas CBK Push Dagger Review."

"Great News! Brie Larson may be coming to Star Wars"--Critical Drinker (6 min.) (Language Warning!). SJW's always double down.

"America is in Danger and you Guys don't see it"--The Modern Survivalist (aka FerFal) (11 min.)

"The 1922 New York City Straw Hat Riots"--The History Guy (11 min.)
We didn't start the fire.

“How did you go bankrupt? Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.”― Ernest Hemingway, The Sun Also Rises. I think this applies to moral bankruptcy as well.

Hmm: "China quietly doubles troop levels in Hong Kong, envoys say"

From Reuters. Most of the buildup is of People's Liberation Army (PLA) troops, but a significant number are likely also from the People's Armed Police (PAP), a mainland paramilitary anti-riot and internal security force approximately 1 million strong under a separate command from the PLA.

Making a List and Checking It Twice

Christmas is around the corner, and so the mind naturally wanders to the subject of gifts and lists of who has been naughty and nice.

     According to the political Left, Trump has been very naughty. So naughty that Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, has unilaterally said that the House will begin impeachment proceedings. In fact, some "respectable" news sources are so excited that they are suggesting that both President Trump and Vice President Pence could be removed from office, leaving Nancy Pelosi the president (see, e.g., The Hill and The Washington Post).

     There are various theories why the Democrats would suddenly decide to try impeachment, some of which I discussed before. One theory is that Attorney General Barr is about to release a report into the conspiracy behind the Russian collusion allegations, along with a slew of criminal indictments, and so the Democrats and their handlers are panicking.

     Another theory, for the more Machiavellian of you, is that this is an indirect method by a faction within the Democratic party to remove Biden from the Presidential race since it will expose Biden's past corruption and business dealings. And Biden has a lot that he doesn't want brought to the public's attention.

     But one that I came across the other day suggests that this is all the result of the insular nature of our ruling elites. Larry Kummer, in his article, "A big question: why do Democrats want to impeach Trump?", suggests that the Democrats "have developed epistemic closure: a self-contained social system in which people’s thinking is unaffected by criticism of their logic or fact by those outside the circle." He adds: "Many on the Left and Right live in self-imposed bubbles, defined by whom they talk to, watch, and read. Untethered from reality, these bubbles detach from reality and float away." There is a lot to commend the view that the 1% are untethered from reality. Peter Turchin related last year:
Last year I had an interesting conversation with someone I’ll call the Washington Insider. She asked me why my structural-demographic model predicted rising instability in the USA, probably peaking with a major outbreak of political violence in the 2020s. I started giving the explanation based on the three main forces: popular immiseration, intra-elite competition, and state fragility. But I didn’t get far because she asked me, what immiseration? What are you talking about? We’ve never lived better than today. Global poverty is declining, child mortality is declining, violence is declining. We have access to the level of technology that is miraculous compared to what previous generations had. Just look at the massive data gathered together by Max Rosen, or read Steven Pinker’s books to be impressed with how good things are.
Turchin goes on to explain how real wages, which grew steadily through the 20th Century, have stagnated since around 1970 (and relative wages had started to decline even earlier), with much of the commensurate harm. Men have been hit the hardest, and Turchin believes that the declining labor participation rate of men can be directly tied to decreasing demand for labor. And the cause of this? According to Turchin, it is "a combination of immigration, loss of manufacturing jobs overseas, massive entry of women into the labor force (thus, this factor both inflated household income and, perversely, depressed wages for men), and changing attitudes towards labor." And the elites either don't know or don't care. As Vox Day summarizes it: "What we've witnessed over the last 50 years is the mass transfer of American wealth and property title from the middle classes to the elite of the US elite. These indicates that revolution is coming, sooner or later, in one way or another."

      Getting back to the topic at hand, this "living in a bubble" theory is that the Democrats have realized that Trump is going to win the 2020 election, and this is a last ditch attempt to prevent it from happening. Or, as one political commentator put it:
      Democratic Party members smell something, and they think they’re sure is blood, without ever contemplating it might be their own. They’ve all been thinking impeachment for a long time, and now more than ever, because they appear to realize it might be the only way to get rid of Trump and get their people in charge, that the ballot box may well not deliver that outcome.

      Ryan Grim’s piece for the Intercept provides a a good picture of what is going on in Dem Camp, not because it’s so well written, it’s actually quite shaky, but because between the lines the despair seeps through. Do read the whole thing, it’s worth the while because it tells a story nobody really talks about.

      That is, on various levels of the US political system, Democratic party candidates have become increasingly fearful of losing their seats, and impeachment must bring them ‘salvation’. You get the idea it’s not even so much about what Trump does, but squarely about him standing in their way, like he stood in Hillary’s.
And yet they ignore the possible implications of pursuing impeachment for the sake of pure spite.

      Pastor Robert Jeffress on Fox News Channel apparently commented on the proposed impeachment and stated that "It will cause a Civil War-like fracture from which our Country will never heal." Which, in my mind, seems a fair assessment. But, when Trump tweeted this comment, he was immediately criticized, including from members of the GOP.

     Of course, it isn't just Trump where the elite demonstrate life in a bubble. We see this with gun control. For instance, Beto O'Rourke went to Kent State University to argue that only the government should have guns. Yes, that Kent State where, in 1970, four students were killed and nine others injured when National Guard troops fired on a group protesting the Vietnam War. "Invoking armed agents of the state gunning down unarmed civilians is an interesting way to argue that Americans would be better off if the government forcefully disarmed private citizens," wrote Eric Boehm at

     But there are a lot more politicians and pundits that have publicly stated that they want to take your guns, as if a confiscation scheme would have no consequences. David Burkhead has put together a lengthy list of such folks, and quotes, for your perusal. He continues to add to the list, so check back and periodically download it for future reference. Such lists have value because there will be a day of reckoning, as Kurt Schlichter explains:
No, not the physical danger that collaborators would inevitably face enforcing such illegal commands, though we’ve seen the bloody results of such tyranny before and it sure won’t be The Waco Kid going through the door. This is about the other consequences of abandoning one’s oath. It is about the consequences that would come when the rule of law returns and justice demands to be done. Because there will be an accounting before the law for anyone who swore to defend the Constitution and then willingly does the opposite. 

Global Warming Hits The Rockies Hard

Reuters understates it a bit in their headline,"Record snow, cold, slams northern U.S. Rockies with winter-like weather," but the article notes that:
       [A]s much as 4 feet (121 cm) of snow fell in places and hard-hit Montana declared a state of emergency to clear blocked roads.

      "You have to go back to the 1930s before you find another storm like this, this early in the season," said Josh Weiss, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service's (NWS) Weather Prediction Center.

      "A pretty good swath of the northwest got 2-3 feet (60-91 cm) of snow," Weiss said. "It's a pretty good storm."

      About 19 inches of snow fell in northwestern Washington state, and light snow also fell in areas of California, Nevada, Wyoming, Oregon and Idaho, forecasters said.

      Another 1-2 inches (2.5 - 5 cm) of snow was expected by mid-Monday in spots, with winter storm warnings in effect for western Montana and the mountains of northern Washington and northern Idaho.
 Although we did not have snow where I live, we had our first frost warning, and I woke up this morning to the sight of frost on the ground and on vehicles that were parked outside.

     Forgive the mocking tone in the title to this post, but there is little evidence that global warming is occurring as climate scientists (and I use that term loosely) believe. All of their models have been wrong and it is increasingly become clear that they are ignoring and/or unaware of many of the important variables affecting the climate.

     John Wilder goes into the gory details of the failure of the various climate models and predictions in his article, "The Global Warming Memo They Don’t Want You To See (Okay, I wrote it.)." Recommended reading.

    Part of the problem is that climate researchers know so little about climate forcing that they don't know what they don't know. But that hasn't stopped the mass hysteria about global warming. Someday, historians will look back on this period of time and group it together with events such as the Salem witch trials.

Friday, September 27, 2019

Chinese Manufacturing Continues To Contract

From Reuters (via One America News Network):
       China’s factory activity is expected to have contracted for a fifth straight month in September, a Reuters poll showed, adding to the country’s economic woes as Beijing remains locked in an escalating trade war with the United States.

      The official Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for September is expected to remain flat at 49.5 from August, according to the median forecasts of 22 economists, below the 50-point mark that separates expansion from contraction on a monthly basis.

      The continued downturn in manufacturing activity points to further weakness in the world’s second-biggest economy, fuelling expectations the authorities will have to roll out more stimulus measures to avert a sharper slowdown.
      Helen Raleigh, via Fox News, discussed this past week why she thinks China has already lost the trade war. After noting how China has historically exaggerated its economic growth and size of its economy, she notes the downward slump in its economy.
President Donald Trump's trade tariffs struck the Chinese economy when it was already declining and the effects have been devastating. The tariffs have not only reduced imports from China , but also caused foreign companies to shift their supply chain out of China. Beijing had hoped that  its stimulus measures, including tax cuts and easy credits to local governments and big businesses, would reduce or even eliminate  anticipated negative impacts on the Chinese economy. However, the latest data are a wakeup call that those stimulus measures were not sufficient enough to absorb the blow from the trade war.
But that is not all. The price of pork--a staple of the Chinese diet--has risen and squeezed consumers in China. Raleigh notes that "[p]ork prices have spiked by more than 46 percent so far, and some experts predict the price increase may be over 80 percent by next year." This is because of an African Swine Fever outbreak that may cause the loss of over 50% of China's pig population by the end of this year. Thus, China was forced to back down on some of the threatened tariffs on American agricultural goods, including pork and soybeans.

     In addition, China's "friend" Iran has not helped matters by its attack on Saudi Arabia. While the United States has been able to drill its way to energy independence, China is the world's largest importer of oil and has been hit hard by the spike in oil prices. As Raleigh concludes, "[a] combination of higher oil and food prices will not only increase pressure on an already slowing Chinese economy, but will also make some of China's go-to stimulus measures, such as the devaluation of its currency, more risky."

NY Post: "Wherever Joe Biden went, son Hunter cashed in"

Article here. The article notes that Hunter Biden landed a $50,000 per month board position with Burisma, the largest gas company in Ukraine, after his father, Joe Biden, was being regularly sent to the Ukraine. Similarly:
      Hunter once ran a hedge fund with his dad’s brother, James Biden, and associated with a notorious Ponzi schemer. James would go on to snag a job as executive vice president of a construction company in 2010, despite having virtually no experience in the field. And only a few months into his tenure, the company would win one of its biggest contracts in its history, a $1.5 billion deal to build affordable homes in Iraq.

      By pure happenstance, Joe was also the Obama administration’s point man in Iraq at the time. Funny how these things work out.
The article forgets the Joe/Hunter team's work in China:
In 2013, then-Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden flew aboard Air Force Two to China. Less than two weeks later, Hunter Biden’s firm inked a $1 billion private equity deal with a subsidiary of the Chinese government’s Bank of China. The deal was later expanded to $1.5 billion. In short, the Chinese government funded a business that it co-owned along with the son of a sitting vice president.

Washington Examiner: "William Barr preparing to deliver 'evidence' of a 'deep state conspiracy'"

Article here. Key part:
Bernstein said Barr is trying to "bring about proof that there is a deep state conspiracy that led to" special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation and suggested that this is a story other journalists are chasing. "Barr is trying to deliver — and I have this, as do other reporters from other sources — to deliver evidence that perhaps this has all been a deep state conspiracy just like Donald Trump alleges," he said.

Revisiting The 21-Foot Rule

As you probably remember, Michael Drejka, the Florida man who shot and killed Markeis McGlockton after McGlockton had shoved him to the ground, had attempted to justify his action by reference to the 21-foot rule, which itself comes from "the Tueller Drill."

      The name of the drill comes from Dennis Tueller who, in a 1983 SWAT Magazine article, sought to determine when a potential attacker armed with a contact weapon would be inside a police officer's danger zone: that is, too close for the officer to have sufficient time to draw his weapon and shoot a suspect before the suspect was close enough to use his or her contact weapon. Tueller explained:
      Consider this. How long does it take for you to draw your handgun and place two center hits on a man-size target at seven yards? Those of us who have learned and practiced proper pistolcraft techniques would say that a time of about one and one-half seconds is acceptable for that drill.

     With that in mind, let's consider what might be called the "Danger Zone" if you are confronted by an adversary armed with an edged or blunt weapon. At what distance does this adversary enter your Danger Zone and become a lethal threat to you?
      We have done some testing along those lines recently and have found that an average healthy adult male [from a standing static position] can cover the traditional seven yard distance in a time of (you guessed it) about one and one-half seconds. It would be safe to say then that an armed attacker at 21 feet is well within your Danger Zone.
     So what is the relevance of this to self-defense? Well, Teuller's observations were taken by trainers and, according to Richard Mann, developed into "a tactical axiom: If an armed individual was within 21 feet of you, you would be justified in shooting to defend yourself." Mann also notes that "[a]ccording to Dave Starin, retired SWAT officer and former director of training at Gunsite Academy, 'It changed many agencies use-of-force policies and training programs and has also been used for decades in use-of-force reviews and court cases.'" The problem, which we will discuss farther below, is that:
Some trainers would teach their students they were unjustified shooting an edge-weapon-armed attacker farther than 21 feet away. Others would preach the opposite and equally stupid idea that one was always justified shooting the same imaginary attacker within 21 feet regardless of any other factors. The reality, of course, is much more complicated. All instances of lethal force must be justified with the totality of the circumstances.
(See also, "Edged Weapon Defense: Is the 21-foot Rule Valid? Part 1",; "Re-Engineering Training On Police Use Of Force," (PDF) pp. 14-15).

     So, how does this work in use-of-force reviews and court cases? In a very good article from Andrew Branca, Branca discusses this and a lot more in the context of Michael Drejka's case. Basically, though, self-defense comes down to the issue of whether a defender reasonably believed that an aggressor presents imminent threat of death or grave bodily harm when defensive force is applied. Three factors are generally considered:  ability, opportunity, and jeopardy (AOJ). “Ability” has to do with whether the threat have the ability to cause harm. “Jeopardy” (aka, “intent”) considers whether the aggressor is  conducting himself in such a manner that one can infer an intent to cause the defender harm. "Opportunity" "refers to the issue of whether an apparent threat who has both the 'ability' to cause harm to the defender and the apparent intent to place the defender in 'jeopardy, also has the 'opportunity' to do so."

      With firearms, Branca explains, "opportunity" is generally not an issue because of the nature of the weapon: if the aggressor can see you, he or she can probably shoot you. It plays more of a role in contact weapons. "In that case," writes Branca, "it is necessary for the attacker to get close enough to the victim in order to have the 'opportunity' to harm the victim with that weapon." Branca continues:
Obviously, then, it is of critical importance to understand at what distance an attacker armed with an impact weapon has come close enough to constitute an imminent threat. In particular, an attacker further than that distance would not yet constitute an imminent threat, and the use of defensive force against such a too-distant attacker would not yet be legally justified.
Thus, the 21-foot rule can become a useful tool for determining when an attacker is close enough to constitute an imminent threat. Or, as Branca puts it: "The distance at which that impact weapon bearing attacker becomes an imminent threat, then, is whatever distance that attacker can cross in that 1.5 seconds (or less). Once inside that distance, the attacker can strike the defender with their weapon before the defender can thwart the attack." (Italics on original). Or, in other words, "[a]ssuming that 'ability' and 'jeopardy are also present, at that distance of 21 feet that attacker has, therefore, become an imminent threat against which defensive force is justifiable."

      Branca continues his analysis by examining why the 21-foot rule was an impediment to the prosecutor in Drejka's case and how the prosecutor's use-of-force expert dishonestly presented testimony that the 21-foot rule only applied to cutting weapons and not contact weapons in general. But while the rest of Branca's analysis is useful in illustrating that prosecutors are no better than ambulance chasers in making their case, the idea that the 21-foot rule establishes some bright line between when force is justified and when it is not is false.

     First of all, Tueller did not say that once an aggressor is less than 21-feet away that he/she is within an officer's danger zone. Rather, he stated: "It would be safe to say then that an armed attacker at 21 feet is well within your Danger Zone." (Underline added).The 21-foot rule was simply a method of describing a point in time when an attacker could strike as fast or faster than an officer could respond. It was not a hard and fast rule--nor was it intended to be--of when an aggressor posed an imminent threat.

     Von Kliem recently noted in an article at Police One that "Force Science studies ... have documented the ability of subjects to sprint and perform a slash in 1.5 seconds from distances closer to 30 feet!" In addition, as Bob Irwin observes,"[r]esearch by Dr. Bill Lewinski of The Force Science Research Center and Dr. Marvin Fackler has repeatedly shown that officer reaction times are significantly longer than commonly believed." He adds:
      The Force Science Research Center has shown that it takes the average officer about half a second to perceive a threat and approximately another half second to decide what to do about it. All of this has to happen before the officer begins his or her draw stroke. What this means is that with the threat closing at seven feet per half second, we are closer to a 35-foot rule.

      And it is extremely difficult to smoothly draw and accurately fire when under a life-threatening attack. So that means that we had better add another 10 feet to allow for the attacker to keep coming if we miss center mass or even if we hit him, even mortally wound him, and he doesn't go down.

     It's now the 45-foot rule.
       Returning to Kliem's article, he continues by discussing the case of Buchanan v. City of San Jose, where the court noted that the just because a threat presented itself beyond 21-feet does not mean that it was not an imminent threat. The relevant facts of that case, as Kliem describes them, are:
      Officers responded to an emergency call that a man was threatening a family with a knife. Sadly, it turned out the man had called the police on himself with the intent of committing “suicide by cop.” When officers arrived, they saw a man armed with a knife who then advanced toward them “in a threatening manner.”

      Starting from a distance over 130 feet, the man first walked toward the officers and then accelerated into a “trot,” which was described as a “fast” and “rapid” pace. Still armed with a knife, the man ignored repeated commands to stop. When the athletic suspect reached approximately 55 feet from the officers, they opened fire. The suspect traveled another 37 feet toward the officers before falling.
(Underline added). Yup, criminals don't just fall down or get blown several feet backward when struck with a bullet.

     So we have to consider that 21-feet was a bare minimum distance (assuming a holstered firearm) in which an officer could draw and fire, not the distance at which the attacker represented a threat. Kliem notes that the 21-foot "rule" is merely a beginning point, and you must also consider "such factors as pre-attack indicators, emotional arousal indicators, attention and perception influences, speed of assaults, firearms accuracy, action and reaction times, start and stop times, sprint speeds, the effect of uniform weight on performance and decision-making processes," as well as the effect of heightened emotional and physical stress on all of the preceding.

       Obviously this distance/time can also vary based on whether the defender already has the firearm out, whether the aggressor is already moving, the training or ability of the people involved, and even the type of weapon. For instance, I'm confident that a competitive fencer could skewer someone in less than 1.5 seconds from a distance of 21-feet because the length of the weapon plus the fencer's arm is already 6 feet, and a lung will take that out to around 8-9 feet. Thus, a fencer would only need to move 12 to 13 feet before being in range of striking.

      Aaron Cowan, writing at the Monderno blog, not only notes that the 21-foot rule not an actual rule, but argues it should be excised from the defensive lexicon.
Edged weapons, improvised weapons, sticks, bats, clubs, tire irons and cinder blocks; all have the ability to cause death or serious bodily injury with the intent to do so.  If that intent exists, the actual type of chosen weapon is irrelevant.  People like to talk about distance, as if it was the only deciding factor, well, it isn't.  The "21 foot rule" isn't a rule at all, in fact the phrase "21 foot rule" shouldn't even exist and the only reason it does is because people parrot it from experts who aren't.
He goes on:
      Yes, I'll be blunt, anyone using that term as a serious training tool is not any sort of realistic expert. There are no bright line distances in self-defense, least of all a "21 foot rule" that the creator of the drill for which it is based, Dennis Tueller, never used the term at all.  His drill was created to show how long it would take an officer to clear a duty holster with an edged weapon armed threat running at them. That time was averaged to 1.5 seconds or 21 feet. Some gun writer (the internet expert before such a thing existed) coined the term "21 foot rule" to justify the distance someone must be from you with a knife before you can shoot them.

      This drill doesn't account for an officer already having their weapon drawn, the officer retreating or placing a barrier between them and the threat, or any number of other factors that would render it pointless. All in all, the drill only works to demonstrate distance vs. draw time and since there are much more effective and realistic ways to do that, its usefulness in training is questionable at best. Since it’s taken as gospel and almost always out of context, this "21 foot rule" is a dangerous mindset that can do much more harm than good. Distance is a factor, but often not the deciding one. Many other factors must be weighed before force is used and force can always be used with other options have failed, or cannot be attempted due to lack of time and/or distance.
    So what should we take away from Tueller's lesson? Warren Wilson writes:
His first point was “tactical alertness,” or what we might call situational awareness today.  The quicker the defender recognizes the threat, the sooner he can take some soft of defensive action. Next, the ability and awareness to be able to move yourself to cover. That might mean an obstacle or anything between you and an advancing threat. Next, draw the firearm as soon as possible. Don’t wait any longer than necessary to get your sidearm in play. Issue verbal challenges immediately. Powerfully delivered commands may be enough to deter an assailant and will certainly aid in the officer’s justification to use deadly force if it comes to that.  Finally, Mr. Tueller recommended, “consistent, repetitive practice,” in one’s draw stroke.  The more skilled an officer is with his or her equipment, the greater their reactionary gap.

Why Is This Not Surprising?

From the Daily Mail, "300 men and boys are freed from 'house of torture' Islamic boarding school where they were chained up, raped by staff and starved 'in the name of teaching them the Koran' in Nigeria." The article reports that "Police spokesman Yakubu Sabo said: 'We found around 100 students including children as young as nine, in chains stuffed in a small room all in the name of reforming them and making them responsible persons.'" But "[t]he owner of the school said all they do is teach people Islam and said the allegations of torture and sexual assault are false, despite acknowledging people were in chains," and contend that the chains were only used on the students who had tried to run away.

TGIF: This Week's "Weekend Knowledge Dump"

Just a reminder that Greg Ellifritz has a new "Weekend Knowledge Dump" for this week. Links to articles and videos on self-defense, including a couple on church security; health and dealing with injuries, including a detailed article on treating lacerations; various firearms and their use, including an article on the history of the tactical shotgun and evaluating .22 ammo for self-defense; and a lot more.

More on Vaping Illnesses

As I've noted before, my interest in this issue was the sudden dog-piling on vaping, and the almost universal failure of the major media outlets to report on the true nature of the illnesses. That true nature is, as the Business Insider puts it, "Black market marijuana vapes containing substances like alcohol and caffeine may be to blame for spate of mysterious lung illnesses." From that article:
       There's a growing market for these illegal vapes and cartridges, which use cannabis distillates in a liquid form, rather than marijuana flower, to get users high. Black market sellers can open and tamper with the cartridges, adding substances like caffeine, alcohol, or other ingredients to make their supplies last longer.

     A September 6 study in The New England Journal of Medicine looked at vaping-related illness cases in Wisconsin and Illinois and found that 24 of the 41 THC-using patients they interviewed had used a product that was branded as "Dank Vapes," an elusive black market brand.

      People who sell Dank Vape brand devices on the black market advertise them as top-notch marijuana consumption devices, but the person who is running the business is a mystery, according to Inverse. Others have even started copying it with their own "Dank Vapes," making the name itself even more mysterious and difficult to track.

      During a September 19 media briefing, CDC and FDA officials said they are specifically examining THC, other cannabinoids, opioids, cutting agents, pesticides, poisons, and various additives.
 And, in fact, that NEJM article indicated that fully 84% of the victims admitted to using THC vaping products, and the researchers believed that the actual number was higher.

     It probably is not the THC that is causing the illnesses, however, but other contaminants:
      Cannabis vape pens bought on the black market have been found to contain hydrogen cyanide.

      NBC News reported that they ordered a testing of 18 vaping cartridges with THC, the main psychoactive compound found in marijuana.  

      Three cartridges were purchased from legal dispensaries in California and those were not found to contain heavy metals or pesticides.

      But of the 15 that were bought from unlicensed dealers, 13 contained the solvent Vitamin E, which has been found to cause severe lung damage when it is inhaled.

      Also found was myclobutanil, a pesticide that, when burned, can turn into hydrogen cyanide - a chemical that can lead to fatal asphyxiation within minutes.
So, while the FDA has stated that it does not have plans to ban flavored vaping products, several states have or are looking at suspending or stopping sales.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

POTD: Ghost Town in the Sky

This photograph is from the photo essay, "Haunting images show North Carolina amusement park known as 'Ghost Town Village' overrun by nature after it was abandoned in 2010 following a mudslide." The amusement park was a mixture of rides, amusements and Old West themed buildings. It was accessed by the cable car system pictured above.

There's Some Common Thread Here, But I Just Can't Put My Finger On It

"The Mueller inquiry was an attempted coup--We should call things by their real names," writes Roger Stone. An excerpt listing some of the key figures in the attempted coup:
        One of the remarkable things about this story is how many people it involves and how long it has taken to get a full headcount of the anti-Trump team. Remember Joseph Mifsud? Stefan Halper? Peter Strzok and his alleged paramour, Lisa Page? Bruce Ohr, former associate deputy attorney general? It turned out that his wife, Nellie Ohr, worked for Fusion GPS, the company that hired Christopher Steele.

       And what about Steele? We first met him as a former British spy, the ‘highly respected’ operative who had the goods on Trump. We soon learned that Steele had been paid by the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary campaign, and that his dossier was not just ‘unverified’ and ‘salacious’, as James Comey said, but was nothing but scurrilous opposition research assembled from ‘random’ gossip from highly dubious sources. Nevertheless, it was the dossier, and nothing but the dossier that provided unverified ‘evidence’ for supposedly ‘verified’ FISA warrants to spy on Carter Page, an American citizen, and hence to spy on Trump’s campaign and, later, his administration.
       But Stone ignores one of the key figures, former CIA Director John Brennan. As Politico described Brennan earlier this year, "Brennan was CIA director during Trump's transition into the White House and left office the same day Trump was inaugurated in 2017. ... Since leaving office, Brennan has been a prominent critic of Trump, claiming there had been collusion between the president's campaign and Russia." Per the same article, "Sen. John Cornyn ... accused former CIA Director John Brennan of being on a 'search-and-destroy mission' to undermine President Donald Trump's administration."

       Attorney General Barr also testified before Congress in April 2019, saying that not only was the FBI involved with pushing the fake dossier, but that other intelligence agencies were involved. The author, Mollie Ziegler Hemingway, continues:
      There have always been indications that the operation went far beyond the FBI, however. For example, former CIA director John Brennan, now an MSNBC contributor, separately briefed Sen. Harry Reid, (D-Nev.) about the operation. Reid understood that move was undertaken so he could publicize the Russia investigation to influence the ongoing presidential election campaign.

      Former director of national intelligence James Clapper, now a CNN contributor, admitted to discussions with media outlets about the investigation. The U.S. embassy in London was used contrary to established protocol to funnel hearsay that was used as a pretext to officially launch a wide-ranging investigation against the entire Trump orbit. Clinton-connected officials in the State Department were also used to disseminate unverified gossip and allegations about Trump throughout the federal government.
The article adds: "The use of Stefan Halper, for example, a London-based American academic with longstanding ties to the FBI, CIA, and Defense Department, raises serious questions about whether CIA assets or resources were used against American citizens." The author concludes:
      The fact of the matter is that federal intelligence agencies spied on a rival political campaign. They illegally leaked information about that surveillance. They abused their authority to at best undermine the duly elected president and at worst to attempt a soft coup against him. They did so with the near-total cooperation of the American media establishment.

       This is a scandal of epic proportions. It is one that threatens the foundations of constitutional government. It is a direct attack on American democracy.
The Conservative Review similarly notes:
        Brennan’s personal role in the Trump-Russia collusion saga dates back to at least the summer of 2016 (and perhaps even earlier) when he met with a top British intelligence chief to discuss Trump’s supposed ties to the Russians. Around the time of that meeting, and following its conclusion, American and foreign spies began to make contact with members of the Trump campaign, with some claiming to have access to Russian secrets involving the Hillary Clinton campaign. Brennan later seemed to take credit and defend the espionage operation, which again, relied on the dossier to legitimize spying on Americans.
       Brennan, as CIA director, reportedly inserted the Clinton-funded-and-manufactured Steele dossier into a draft version of the highly scandalous Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) on Russian interference, which was published under the auspices of Donald Trump’s political opponents in early January 2017, just two weeks before President-elect Trump took office.
    But the Russia collusion story is old news--at least that is what the Left wants us to believe--and the new "hotness" is Trump supposedly requesting the Ukraine to reopen an investigation into John Biden's son, Hunter Biden, which investigation was closed down when John Biden, then Vice President, threatened to withhold U.S. aid unless the investigating prosecutor was fired. (More specifically, the Ukrain, prior to VP Biden's pressure, was investigating the Ukrainian gas company, Burisma, which, at the time, was paying Hunter Biden $50,000 a month despite Hunter's complete lack of credentials or qualifications in the gas industry). The Ukraine was already reopening its investigation of Burisma and possible corruption, but that isn't relevant to the Left's accusations. In fact, the Left simply doesn't want to talk about Burisma.

     But this is where things get sort of interesting. First, this became an issue after an unidentified whistle-blower, a C.I.A. officer who was detailed to work at the White House at one point, indicated that Trump has specifically requested that the Ukrainian President investigate Hunter Biden, although "[t]he anonymous whistleblower has also admitted to not having firsthand knowledge of the conversations between the president and Zelensky." Of course, the whistleblower's complaint was investigated, and it was determined that he was motivated by political bias against Trump and in favor of a political rival of Trump. One of the attorney's representing the whistleblower is Andrew Bakaj, the managing partner of the Compass Rose Legal Group. But Bakaj's history is more interesting: he interned for Chuck Schumer and Hillary Clinton in 2001, and his subsequent career included stints for the CIA and the Department of Defense.

     Second, in another interesting twist, someone decided to look into Mitt Romney's circle of advisers or friends after, as CNN put it, "For days, Utah Sen. Mitt Romney had been a lone Republican voice expressing concern about President Donald Trump's July phone call with Volodymyr Zelensky in which Trump asked Ukraine's President to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his family." Well, it turns out that Mitt Romney's national security adviser in his 2012 campaign, Cofer Black, is a member of the board of directors of Burisma, taking the position February 2017, about 6 months after Hunter Biden left. And, wouldn't you know it, Black worked for the CIA from 1974 to 2006, rising to the level of Director of the National Counterterrorism Center from 1999-2002, and, because of his good work at stopping 9/11, was thereafter promoted to Ambassador at Large and Coordinator for Counter-terrorism by President George W. Bush in December 2002.

     (And do I even have to mention that Trump nearly lost Utah in the 2016 election because of Independent candidate, Evan McMullin, pulling votes from Trump; or that McMullin is a former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operations officer?)

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Springfield Arms Releases Their Version of the Glock 26 and P365

Every major gun news site today was announcing the release of Springfields' Hellcat 9 mm sub-compact pistol, featuring an 11+1 capacity. Comparing it to the Glock 26, the size is almost identical (the Hellcat shaves a quarter inch off its height, half an inch off the 26's length--mostly because of the different grip angle) but the Hellcat weighs in at about 3 oz. less. The Hellcat also squeezes one more round into its standard, flush fit magazine.

    Compared with the Sig P365, it looks like the dimensions are similar--about 2/10th of an inch longer than the P365. I can't really tell with weight because it is not clear if the listed weight for the P365 is with an empty magazine or without.

    MSRPs on the Hellcat are $569 (standard) and $599 (optic ready). I couldn't find a current MSRP for the Glock 26, but it looks like retail prices are in the same range. MSRP for the P365 is $599.

     It appears that the major advantages the Hellcat brings to the table over the Glock 26 is that the Hellcat has a small accessory rail, the extra round of ammo, and you have the option of purchasing a Hellcat with milled slide to accept a micro-red dot sight. Similarly, the advantage over the P365 is also the extra round of ammo and the availability of getting an optic ready pistol.

Guns Mag.: "Why Not Pack A Pair?"

Most of you are probably familiar with what is often termed the New York reload: carrying two (or more) firearms, and switching from the first to the second when the first runs out of ammunition rather than attempting a reload. This subject generally comes up with using revolvers because the common belief is that it is faster to draw a second revolver than to reload a revolver. (But if you want to train for faster revolver reloading, here is a drill developed by Marcus Wynn). This isn't necessarily the case with a semi-auto pistol.

     But--and don't shoot the messenger--I came across an article at Guns Magazine by Tiger McKee, who is a generally respected gun writer, discussing using two handguns at once. He writes:
The experiment began by researching the works of others. Ed McGivern’s Fast And Fancy Revolver Shooting has a chapter on two-gun work. He recommends starting out slow, firing one pistol at a time, never sacrificing accuracy for speed. For defensive purposes, J. Henry FitzGerald’s Shooting advises working up close, firing “… double action and pointing, no sights used, the arms stiffened when the muzzle is pointed in the right direction.”
He also adds that "McGivern suggests using two guns of the same type, size and weight." He then moved to dry fire practice:
       I load up with dummy ammo and dry practice 10 or 15 minutes a day. “Filling” each hand, I draw both pistols at once. As soon as the sights hit the target I smoothly stroke the triggers one at a time. After a little of this I practice pressing both triggers at once. Working with both hands at the same time feels a lot more natural than I anticipated. I research this phenomenon and discover the concept of “bilateral coordination,” our natural ability to use both sides of the body at the same time for controlled movements. Your hands and arms can perform the same tasks, like drawing two guns at once or opposite-type actions such as pushing with one arm while pulling with the other.
* * *
      The visual aspects of working with two guns are very interesting. Firing one pistol and then the other is just a matter of shifting your visual focus from one set of sights to the other. Since this experiment is supposed to be fun, my main interest is in seeing what could be done firing both pistols at once. I don’t have a dominant eye, so I can actually get a sight picture with both sets of sights.
 The author got it to work, even being able to shoot one handgun at the chest and the other at the pelvic area.

    He found out some other things. First, shooting at the same time at the same target will often cause the handguns to smack together. Second, you need handguns of the same trigger pull weight to fire simultaneously; otherwise, you will be slower to fire the one with the heavier trigger. Third, and related, is that accuracy is much better with semi-autos than double-action revolvers.

    Is this a viable defensive option? The author relates:
    Is there a legitimate need to carry more than one pistol? History says “yes.” On December 19, 1854, Jon athan R. Davis, a military veteran, killed 11 armed outlaws at Rocky Canyon near Sacramento, California using two Colt revolvers and his Bowie knife. This is one of the deadliest fights in American history involving one man against multiple foes. There was a reason men carried weapons in those days.

      What about more contemporary examples? I contact Mas Ayoob. Probably the most famous example he mentions is Lance Thomas, a watch dealer in L.A.. Thomas has defeated multiple armed robbers, using more than one pistol in all but his first gunfight. He had pistols positioned all around his shop within easy reach. In another robbery, a young clerk at a stop-and-rob, Ayoob tells me, “pulled his primary gun on a robber, who jumped him and got it away from him.” The kid pulled a backup gun, stopping the threat just in time.
And, from another article:
In Tales of the Stakeout Squad, Massad Ayoob relates that Cirillo did carry spare ammo in belt loops and speed loaders. However, Ayoob also says, “I don’t think he ever reloaded until after a firefight was over. He and his favorite partner, Bill Allard, both told me that when they ran one gun dry, they’d drop it and grab another. It was from that that I coined the term ‘New York reload.'” At times, Cirillo would carry three six-shot revolvers and a Walther PPK while on duty (though it’s worth noting that he completely switched over to semi-autos of various calibers in his later years).
But these are examples are probably using one handgun at a time. McKee concludes: "Could you do it under realistic conditions, when your body is flooded with a chemical cocktail against a live [assailant]? I’m not sure, but I do know it’s some fun shooting."

Peter Grant: "Ebola - are officials concealing its spread?"

Peter Grant, at his Bayou Renaissance Man blog, discusses a concerning story that suggests that Ebola might have spread to Tanzania, but Tanzania officials won't admit it. Grant relates: "The World Health Organization issued an extraordinary statement Saturday raising concerns about possible unreported Ebola cases in Tanzania and urging the country to provide patient samples for testing at an outside laboratory." Tanzanian officials say that a suspicious death of a doctor that returned from an area within the Ebola outbreak zone was not due to Ebola, but won't submit samples for testing by an independent lab as required by international treaty. Grant adds: "What's more, if there have been cases in Tanzania, the odds are very good indeed that there have also been more cases in nearby countries - Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi."

Additional reading: "Tanzania is being cagey about suspected Ebola cases, WHO warns"--Ars Technica.

Only Police Should Have Guns: Officer Shoots Self in Road Rage Incident

The Los Angeles Times reports that "[a]uthorities are investigating how an off-duty Alhambra police officer ended up with a self-inflicted gunshot wound after an encounter on the road with an off-duty Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy."

      According to the article, "[t]The San Marino Police Department initially said the driver of a blue Subaru had shot himself after a road rage incident...." But upon further investigation--wink, wink--the department announced this was not so. Rather, it was the result of a simple misunderstanding:
      “At this point in the preliminary investigation, this does not appear to be a road rage incident and neither party knew each other or was aware they were members of a law enforcement agency,” police said in an updated news release.

      According to San Marino police, a second driver, identified as an off-duty sheriff’s deputy, told investigators he thought the man in the Subaru was driving erratically.

      He wanted to stop the man and ask him not to speed in the neighborhood, he said.

      Police said the deputy, who was in a Mercedes-Benz, pulled alongside the other man while they were driving and tried to speak to the Subaru driver, motioning for the man to lower his window.

     The Alhambra officer slowed and moved to the right to allow the Mercedes to pass.

      The officer later told investigators that the deputy was speeding and that he believed the man in the Mercedes was driving in an aggressive manner.

     “Fearing for his safety, the Alhambra officer drew his firearm while inside his vehicle,” San Marino police said.

     San Marino Police Chief John Incontro said the officer accidentally shot himself in the process of pulling out his weapon.

Seen on the Interweb

These are from comments that McCarthy made in 2013 explaining why an "assault weapons" ban would stop mass shootings.

Drills for the Pistol and Revolver

Priority Performance has an article on a drill designed to help you find your level of ability. It uses a special target, which you can download here. The author describes the drill thusly: "Essentially how this works is that there are four, independent strings of fire. The drill is a simple pass/fail. You either get your hits within the PAR, or you don’t. The PAR times reduce each repetition, becoming more and more difficult. If you are able to clean the highest level of the drill, you start adding one round per repetition." Good luck--one of the targets is a 1-inch square. Another drill described at Priority Performance is the Bill Drill 2, which is a take on the classic Bill Drill.

     Sheriff Jim Wilson takes a look at another classic drill, "The Mozambique Drill: A History and How To"--two to the torso and one to the head, in three seconds at 5 yards. See also his article, "Sheriff's Tips: The Failure Drill Revisited."

     Here are a couple articles about the Dot Torture Drill (you can download a copy of the target here):
  • "Shoot Better With One Box of Ammo"--Range 365. As the author points out, "if you want to improve your shooting skills, it’s important to add some structure to the routine." The target has instructions on how to run the drill, but the article runs through the stages of the drill as well.
  • "Skills Check: Double-Action Dot Torture"--Shooting Illustrated. The author used the Dot Torture to evaluate the new Colt King Cobra revolver. As to the drill, however, he warns:
Now Dot Torture isn’t for the faint of heart. Seemingly easy because it’s only fired at 3 yards, it is deceptively difficult. There are no time limits and the distance is short, but you have to fire a perfect shot every single time for 50 rounds. The temptation to rush is enormous and the slightest break in concentration results in a missed shot, hence the name, Dot Torture. The drill starts with single shots, moves on to pairs and shots on two targets, requires drawing from a holster and even includes reloading.
    In "Hardwired Tactical Shooting Super Test" (USA Carry), the author suggests a test combining accuracy with speed (i.e., you will need a timer). This test uses an NRA B-8 repair center target (you can download a PDF of it here). The standard course of fire for this drill is 10 rounds, but, for those using revolvers or small pistols, the author has put together versions using 6- and 5-round strings of fire. And revolver shooters might also want to check out a couple drills described by Ethan Johns at SWAT Magazine, "Rediscovering the Wheel: Revolver Drills To Improve Shooting."

    Mike Seeklander of Shooting Performance has "Four Key Systematic Drills for Handgun Skill Development" using a shot timer and standard IDPA targets. He explains:
       A bit of advice about technique.  Without the proper technique you will end up spinning your wheels with even the best-designed drills.  The point of performing repetitions in a training drill is to gain skill in the technique the drill includes.   If you are a new shooter, I strongly recommend you take a class or review the some good sources of technique.  One source is my handgun shooting Youtube series (search Mike Seeklander on Youtube).  If you are new to shooting, or simply want a great program that is free to follow, check it out first.  If you want the full Monty, you can check out my Defensive Handgun program too.

       The drills I am going to assign in this article are specifically designed to allow you to work on key components of technique that are fundamental and required to be able to shoot well in a defensive situation.  You will find the drills at the end of the article but I want to introduce them quickly so you understand what you will be working on.   Each drill has a specific purpose.  They might seem overly simple, but I promise you that this is where you need to start, and you can progress from there.   Goals are also listed in the drill sheets, so you have something to set your sights for (no pun intended!).  The goals might be challenging for some of you, but don’t be discouraged.   If you’re a high-level competition shooter and can meet these goals easily, I suggest you reduce the goal time.
 Read the whole thing.

     If you have the right place to shoot, you might try the "Hard Swing Drill." This drill has you engaging multiple targets: one to each side of you, and one straight in front, so that you have to turn a full 180 degrees to engage the targets. The drill is this:
Three IPSC-style targets. Targets 1 and 3 are seven yards to the left and right of the shooting position (use a USPSA-type shooting box if you’re practicing for competition) and one yard downrange, facing the start position. Target 2 is 15 yards directly downrange from the starting position. Start with arms at sides. At signal, draw and shoot targets 1 and 3 with two rounds each. Perform a reload and shoot target 2 with two rounds.
You are supposed to use a timer, but no par times are given in the article. Another multi-target drill (but all three forward of you) is the "15 in 10 Drill", which, as the name describes, is 15 shots in 10 seconds with shots at targets at 5, 10, and 20 yards; 5-shots each, and drawing between each set (i.e., draw and shoot 5 at 5; reholster, and then shoot 5 at 10; reholster, and then shoot 5 at 20) and adding the times together.

     Rather than multiple targets, J. Scott Rupp offers a version of the box drill where the shooter must move while engaging a single target. The drill doesn't use a timer, but you will need cones or something similar to mark locations, as well as extra magazines or speed loaders for reloading the weapon. Rupp describes the drill:
Place an IPSC/IDPA target five yards from the front edge of the box with five-yard spacing between the cones—firing three to five shots in each segment, depending on gun capacity. Begin at the front right corner, raise or draw the gun and move backward, firing with a two-hand hold. Go around the rear cone and switch to strong-hand-only, firing the same number of shots. At the left-rear cone, do a reload and switch to a two-hand hold, firing as you move forward. At the final turn, change to weak-hand-only and move toward the start.
He also suggests that you "[f]ire only while moving, striving for center-mass hits. Concentrate on sure footwork—toe/heel moving backward, heel/toe moving forward—while maintaining front-sight focus. Don’t turn your body on the one-hand sections; walk forward normally, firing arm extended."

     For those times between trips to the range, the post "Suggested Drills" at Rangemaster describes various drills for dry fire practice and links to the animated gifs used for the targets (just be sure your firearm is empty or you will end up with a hole through your monitor).

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Epstein's Secret Combination

A few days ago, the Inquisitr Magazine published an article claiming that "Jeffrey Epstein Reportedly Had A Vast Network Of Professionals Support His Sex Trafficking Ring." According to the article:
The Miami Herald reports that Epstein’s alleged sex trafficking ring was also supported by a network of helpers from professions, such as hairdressers, immigration lawyers, dentists, and psychiatrists. Epstein also reportedly had connections to doctors that screened his victims for sexually transmitted diseases and prescribed them birth control.
Yet none of the members of this undisclosed network reported Epstein or his exploitation of minors.

     Frankly, it reminds me a bit of James O’Keefe's undercover "sting" of ACORN where he and "20 year-old scantily clad Hannah Giles" would go to ACORN office pretending to be a pimp and his prostitute trying to get assistance concerning housing for underage prostitutes.
      For two months, Hannah and I visited nearly a dozen offices around the United States playing the role of a pimp and prostitute, eliciting statements from various ACORN workers about an outlandish situation involving 13 underage El Salvadoran prostitutes.

      Time after time, ACORN employees gave Hannah and I advice on how to evade tax law, avoid the police, bury the illicit money it [sic] the ground and declare the underage sex workers as “dependents” on our tax returns.
It was like ACORN had experience dispensing such advice.

     But Epstein's assistance went further than just various beauticians and professionals turning a blind eye. It's been alleged that Epstein used four women--Sarah Kellen, Nadia Marcinkova, Lesley Groff, and Adriana Ross--to recruit and train his victims. "A fifth woman, Haley Robson, has also come under scrutiny, according to the New York Times."
       In a 2009 deposition in a civil lawsuit, Robson said that when Epstein flew to Florida she would be contacted by Kellen to arrange girls to give massages to the billionaire pedophile. 

      Robson reportedly made $200 for every high school girl she brought to the Palm Beach Mansion.  

      Ghislaine Maxwell, Epstein's former girlfriend and alleged 'madam' - who was not named in the Florida deal either - was the highest ranking in their inner circle, according to the victims. 

       She has been named in multiple lawsuits against the millionaire and has been sued by some of the women herself. 

      In newly unsealed court documents, Virginia Roberts - who sued the pair in 2015 - said she was forced to engage in threesomes with Maxwell and at times massage her.  
In addition, Epstein may have had a mole in the police department. The Inquisitr article reports:
Former Palm Beach police chief Michael Reiter revealed during an interview with NBC News’ Dateline that convicted sex offender and accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein was always one step ahead of investigators. He suggested that the disgraced financier had a mole within the force that helped him evade Palm Beach police who began investigating his alleged sex trafficking in 2005.
    Vox Day, commenting on the Inquisitr article, relates: "I've known 'the network of helpers' was real since the moment I saw the 'Pizzagate is debunked' meme appear simultaneously in nearly every mainstream media organ despite there being no factual information in any of the purported debunkings. ... And nothing, not even the 'Saddam Hussein has weapons of mass destruction' meme, has ever been as aggressively coordinated and propagated as the 'Pizzagate is debunked' meme."

    Vox Day was not the only person to take notice of the strange unity of condemnation by the media of "Pizzagate" combined with a lack of interest to investigate the allegations. Ron Unz published a lengthy article, "American Pravda: John McCain, Jeffrey Epstein, and Pizzagate" that examined the unlikeliness of certain people to obtain, and retain power, except for the possibility that they could easily be blackmailed. Of Epstein, Unz remarks:
       As presented by these media outlets, Epstein’s personal rise also seemed rather inexplicable unless he had benefited from some powerful network or similar organization. Lacking any college degree or credentials, he had somehow gotten a job teaching at one of New York City’s most elite prep schools, then quickly jumped to working at a top investment bank, rising to partner with astonishing speed until he was fired a few years later for illegal activity. Despite such a scanty and doubtful record, he was soon managing money for some of America’s wealthiest individuals, and keeping so much of it for himself that he was regularly described as a billionaire. According to newspaper accounts, his great specialty was “making connections for people.”

      Obviously, Epstein was a ruthlessly opportunistic financial hustler. But extremely wealthy individuals must surely be surrounded by great swarms of ruthlessly opportunistic financial hustlers, and why would he have been so much more successful than all those others?...
But, back to the issue of the media coverage of Pizzagate, Unz relates:
       Around the same time that I first became familiar with the details of the Pizzagate controversy, the topic also started reaching the pages of my morning newspapers, but in an rather strange manner. Political stories began giving a sentence or two to the “Pizzagate hoax,” describing it as a ridiculous right-wing “conspiracy theory” but excluding all relevant details. I had an eery feeling that some unseen hand had suddenly flipped a switch causing the entire mainstream media to begin displaying identical signs declaring “Pizzagate Is False—Nothing To See There!” in brightly flashing neon. I couldn’t recall any previous example of such a strange media reaction to some obscure Internet controversy.

       Articles in the Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times also suddenly appeared denouncing the entirety of the alternative media—Left, Right, and Libertarian—as “fake news” websites promoting Russian propaganda, while urging that their content be blocked by all patriotic Internet giants such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google. Prior to that moment, I’d never even heard the term “fake news” but suddenly it was ubiquitous across the media, once again almost as if some unseen hand had suddenly flipped a switch.

        I naturally began to wonder whether the timing of these two strange developments was entirely coincidental. Perhaps Pizzagate was indeed true and struck so deeply at the core of our hugely corrupted political system that the media efforts to suppress it were approaching the point of hysteria.

       Not long afterward, Tara McCarthy’s detailed Pizzagate videos were purged from YouTube. This was among the very first instances of video content being banned despite fully conforming to all existing YouTube guidelines, another deeply suspicious development.

      I also noticed that mere mention of Pizzagate had become politically lethal. Donald Trump had selected Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency, as his National Security Advisor, and Flynn’s son served as the latter’s chief of staff. The younger Flynn happened to Tweet out a couple of links to Pizzagate stories, pointing out that the accusations hadn’t yet been actually investigated let alone disproven, and very soon afterward, he was purged from the Trump transition team, foreshadowing his father’s fall a few weeks later. It seemed astonishing to me that a few simple Tweets about an Internet controversy could have such huge real-life impact near the top of our government.

       The media continued its uniform drumbeat of “Pizzagate Has Been Disproven!” but we were never told how or by whom, and I was not the only individual to notice the hollowness of such denunciations. An award-winning investigative journalist named Ben Swann at a CBS station in Atlanta broadcast a short television segment summarizing the Pizzagate controversy and noting that contrary to widespread media claims, Pizzagate had neither been investigated nor debunked. Swann was almost immediately purged by CBS but a copy of his television segment remains available for viewing on the Internet.
      Vox Day, in the post cited earlier, had his own conclusion as to the media acting in lockstep: "Once you understand that the Bible is legit and Satan rules the world, it's not that hard to recognize who is actively on his side." But that seems to segue to something in another article about Pizzagate. In his 2016 article, "Precedents for Pizzagate," Aedon Cassiel reports on numerous other incidents that bear a striking resemblance to "Pizzagate," but were also swept under the rug. (Seriously, read the whole article). But he also noted something interesting:
Many people refer to the so–called “Satanic Panic” from the late 80’s and early 90’s to claim that the probability of hysteria around false allegations is more likely, and an even greater threat to society, than actual ritualized sexual abuse. However, this appears to be rather convenient for actual pedophiles—because according to Kenneth Lanning, an FBI expert on both cult crime and child abuse, often child sex offenders “introduce occult into the abuse so the kids won’t be believed . . . That is their M.O. (mode of operation) . . . People are getting away with molesting children because we can’t prove there are satanic devil worshippers eating people. Pretty soon it becomes unprosecutable.”
He also adds:
To repeat the conclusion I reached earlier: child sex abuse is, without question, a rampant, institutional, and high-level phenomena. It occurs on a large scale in the highest levels of power—in the fields of entertainment, government, and law enforcement—and members of these rings have been well-known to gain handles on the relevant positions of power to ensure their actions are successfully covered up. Whether anything unique or original comes out of Pizzagate or not, then, my take is that the basic spirit of concern and distrust towards the elite halls of power that Pizzagaters have demonstrated is their general disposition is still far closer to the spirit of the truth than the basic attitude of dismissiveness that such a thing could even occur being demonstrated by those who find it too quick and easy to dismiss all of Pizzagate in its entirety as nothing more than a hoax—and I would stand by this statement even if it turned out that the latter were right.
(Underline added).

    Surely there could be nothing more abominable to God than this destruction of young souls. Which is why I suspect that these high level networks are the Mother of Abominations. 

Other articles of note: "Pizzagate" and the video below. I would note that Anonymous Conservative cited to some information suggesting that Andrew Breitbart was investigating Pizzagate and Podesta when he (Breitbart) met his untimely death.

"#PizzaGate: What We Know So Far"--(22 min.) (2016)

The Democrats Thirst for Civil War

CBS News reports that "Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced the House is launching a formal impeachment inquiry into President Trump, setting up a dramatic constitutional clash just over a year before the presidential election." Also, "Pelosi said the House Judiciary Committee, led by Chairman Jerry Nadler, will take the lead in the impeachment proceedings, consolidating information from the six committees which have been investigating the president."

     Without any hint of shame, Pelosi waxed poetic about the Constitution and the need to uphold it when she made her announcement. Too bad that she doesn't feel that way about the Bill of Rights.

MSB: "Battery Corrosion | Why They Leak And How To Prevent It"

A good article from Modern Survival Blog on why batteries (focusing on AA and AAA in particular) will leak and corrode. It is mostly a problem with alkaline batteries because, due to the chemical reaction driving the production of electricity, hydrogen gas can build up and the pressure can rupture the seals on the ends of the battery and/or the metal body of the battery. To avoid leaks and corrosion damaging electronics, the author recommends buying Energizer MAX brand batteries, which are guaranteed not to leak, or to remove batteries from devices that won't be used for significant periods of time.

     My experience is that problems with leaks and corrosion are disproportionately high with cheap batteries--particularly the bulk packs of inexpensive off-brand batteries you can pick up at Costco. A good brand, such as Duracell and Energizer are less likely to give you problems over the long run. So, for instance, while I continue to buy the cheap Costco batteries for TV remotes or video game controllers, where there is a high turnover in battery usage, I've turned to higher quality batteries to use in equipment that may sit for awhile or, as the author suggests, remove the batteries.

    I recently came across Energizer Ultimate Lithium batteries which claim a 20 year shelf-life, leak resistant, and good performance under extremes of temperature. I bought some AAA to use in pocket flashlight and see how they work, but may put more aside for long term storage if I like them. Duracell also had some long term storage batteries. Again, it might be cost effective to buy these batteries for everything, but if they work well, I will probably put these in flashlights and other items.

Great Deal on Walther P99C AS in .40 S&W

Shoot Straight has a great deal right now on Walther P99C AS handguns: only $299. As of this writing, they have 14 still in stock. (Note: I have no connection, financial or otherwise, with Shoot Straight). From the description:
The Walther P99C AS features 3-dot polymer sights, picatinny accessory rail, extended slide stop, ambidextrous paddle-style magazine release, and Matte Black Tenifer finish. The most note worthy feature of the Walther P99C AS, is the Double Action-to-Single Action Striker Fired trigger system. On top of the slide is the manual decocker to give your first shot a 9 pound trigger pull. The single action pull is rated at 4.5 pounds w/ .31″ of travel. Comes with a cleaning rod, one additional backstrap, and two (8) round magazines; one flush fit, one with a pinky finger extension.
As noted, caliber is .40 S&W. It is 8+1 capacity.

      A colleague of mine purchased one of these and brought it to work to show me. So, I've handled it, but I haven't shot it. That said, it was very comfortable in the hand. It appeared to be new-in-box. I also liked that although it was a striker fired pistol, it was also double-action/single-action, with a decocker (a button/plate on the top of the slide that you push down). I like the double action feature because, in worst case, you could probably carry it safely just shoved in a pocket. Anyway, it appears to be a very nice gun and I would get one myself, even though it is .40 S&W, but for other financial obligations.

     Although its about the 9 mm version, The Truth About Guns has a review of the P99C AS pistol.

Poll finds 91% of Mexicans ‘very proud’ of their nationality

Story here. Well they should be. For instance, Mexico has some of the strictest gun control laws in the world, including a strict ban on military calibers and military style guns, long prison terms for illegal possession of illegal guns or ammunition, and there is only a single gun store in the whole nation. It is a crime free utopia. So, for instance, you will never read articles from Mexico reporting on things like "[a] group of cartel gunmen in Cancun kidnapped, tortured, and beheaded a top state law enforcement commander"; or that "80% of the municipalities in Mexico are governed by authorities that have direct or indirect links to  organized crime in any of its forms." Nor will you ever read something like "forty four bodies have been discovered in one hundred and nineteen black plastic bin bags in a well, on the outskirts of Guadajalara," or that a further 19 bags of remains have been discovered and 27 mass graves have been found in Jalisco so far in 2019.

Monday, September 23, 2019

More on Biden Covering For His Son

Hot Air's article, "Biden 2018: You’re Damn Right I Ordered The US-Aid-Money Code Red On Ukraine Prosecutor Going After Son’s Company," takes note of the CFR video where Biden brags about forcing the Ukraine to fire a prosecutor. The article also confirms that the prosecutor was investigating the company for which Biden's son was working:
      Note well that Biden leaves out the context of what the prosecutor was investigating at the time of Biden’s insistence on getting him fired. He was quarterbacking a corruption probe targeting Burisma, which was paying Hunter Biden a fortune ($50,000 a month at the time). In fact, it seems a little weird without that context as to why foreign aid to Ukraine depended on the person filling a state prosecutor’s office at all. What foreign-policy interest would the identity of a state prosecutor — an internal affair — have involved that would derail a billion-dollar aid package to an ally in desperate need of the cash?

      And yet, here was Biden bragging last year that “son of a bitch, he got fired” — after Biden explicitly used the authority of his office and the president’s to get rid of the man looking into his son’s employer. ...
See also "Joe Biden's Son Hunter Contradicted Father's Claim They Never Discussed Ukraine Deal" at PJ Media.

Wokeness is War

     I post a lot about the decline of our civilization, including topics about declining morality, the war on fathers and the traditional f...