- Marcus Wynne started posting a series of articles as a lead up to the release of his planned book, Neural Based Training: Book Two - Situational Awareness. Last week he posted "Neural Based Training, Paradigm Busting, and Principles of Training Design" which included a video review of Book One of the Neural Based Training. Yesterday, he published "Looking Back To Move Forward: Situational Awareness Training Old and New" which includes a 2017 video discussion of his situational awareness research and training.
- "Physical Strength, Fighting Ability Revealed In Human Faces"--Science Daily (h/t Marcus Wynne).
[A] study conducted by a team of scientists at the University of California, Santa Barbara has found that a mechanism exists within the human brain that enables people to determine with uncanny accuracy the fighting ability of men around them by honing in on their upper body strength. What's more, that assessment can be made even when everything but the men's faces are obscured from view.
The researchers suggest that the ability to judge physical strength and fighting ability serves different, but equally important, purposes for men and women. In men, the mechanism is a barometer for measuring potential threats and determining how aggressive or submissive they should be when facing a possible enemy. For women, the mechanism helps identify males who can adequately protect them and their children. Men have a lot more experience with rough and tumble play and direct experience with fighting, yet women are just as good at assessing these variables. The authors also point out that neither men nor women fare as well in assessing women's strength. This is entirely expected because, ancestrally, inflicting violence was mostly the province of men.
- "Shotguns for Home Protection" by Greg Ellifritz, Active Response Training. Greg notes that, based on the classes his students are asking for, the interest in shotguns as a defensive weapon is increasing and he welcomes it. In his article, he discusses the effectiveness of the shotgun versus other weapons for home defense. He sums it up this way:
I like the AR-15 rifle/carbine better than most. It’s a great weapon, but it isn’t my choice for home defense. Even though I have eight different AR-15 pattern carbines (and a whole bunch of AKs and other rifles), my home defense guns are Benelli and Remington shotguns. They make it easy to hit bad guys and drop them quickly when hit. Isn’t that what most people are looking for in a defensive weapon?
- "Practical Guide to Buying Your First AR-15"--Everyday Marksman. Writes the author: "The question I want you to ask yourself before you go down this path is simple: Why do you want an AR-15? I don’t mean that in the judgmental way a disbelieving friend or family member might say it. Rather, I want you to think about the role you want it to fill." The author takes you through a process of determining what type of rifle you need--defensive, hunting, competition, long range--and practical advice on what features to look for.
- "Dud Lessons"--The Revolver Guy. The author relates his experience with a dud round during a recent pistol competition--turned out that the primer had been pressed in upside down. He goes on to observe that during ammo scares, like now, with manufacturers running production lines around the clock, quality control tends to decline. (I can attest to that--out of some .22 ammo I purchased during the post-Sandy Hook period, about half in the box were duds). Accordingly, he advises that you carefully inspect any ammo you intend on using for defensive purposes when you load the firearm. This also takes him into a discussion of pluses and minuses to the revolver versus the auto loader.
- "The Tactical Chest Rig: What You Need, and What You Don’t"--Everyday Marksman. The author gives a brief history of the chest rig before going into the pros and cons, and finishing up with what he uses and his recommendations. The basic takeaway is that for the majority of us, less is more. We don't need the load that a soldier or Marine is going to take when heading into a battle.
- "Ask Josh: Why Are The Rifle Barrels So Short?" by Josh Wayner, The Truth About Guns. The author observers that "there is nothing that says a 20-24” barrel is 'better' than a 16” in terms of accuracy. I feel like I write this all the time, and this is another instance: it’s not what cartridge and what barrel length you use it’s what bullet at what speed." Wayner further points out that there is generally little difference in speed between a 24-inch and 16-inch barrel (see also "223 Remington/ 5.56mm NATO barrel length and velocity: 26 inches to 6 inches") and that a short barrel makes a rifle more handy in dense undergrowth or if you are mounting a sound suppressor. There are other trade-offs, though, which Wayner does not discuss, such as increased muzzle blast and recoil from many rifle cartridges, e.g., the standard .303 Enfield rifle versus the shortened Jungle Carbine.
- "MRAD vs MOA"--Ammo To Go. An excerpt:
The MRAD scopes are built on a 10-base system. This system was originally developed for artillery purposes in the late 1800’s, and it offers a precision system that is often more useful and understandable to many shooters.MRAD is short for milliradian, which is usually the preferred method for military and law enforcement purposes. This system is gaining popularity in the civilian market.This system is based on a radian, a unit of angular measurement that is equal to roughly 57.3 degrees. A milliradian is one thousandth of a radian. (There are 1,000 milliradians in a radian.) Because of it’s background in artillery and not circular geometry, this system does not come out to make a perfect circle; there are, however, roughly 6283 milliradians in a full circle.MRAD scopes mostly use a one-tenth system. This means that for each click of the turret, you’re adjusting the sights one-tenth of a milliradian. This represents a smaller unit of angular adjustment than one-fourth of a minute (used in the MOA system.) So, MRAD scopes are usually more precise and you can adjust them in smaller increments.
- "Homemade Booby Traps: Enter At Your Own Risk"--Skilled Survival. This article discusses a couple alarm type systems (a trip wire/air horn system, and an alarm that activates when a door is forced open), several different types of injurious and/or lethal booby traps, and ways to strengthen doors and windows. I would remind readers that you cannot legally do something with a booby trap that you wouldn't be able to do in person, which pretty much means that lethal and injurious booby traps are illegal and will result in criminal charges and civil liability if someone is injured or killed. Save these for war.
- "I Survived an Economic Collapse" (Part 1) (Part 2) by Siempre Listo, Survival Blog. The author describes his experiences living through a major (50%) currency devaluation in Mexico in 1982, including lessons learned. Of course, the elites did just fine because they were warned before hand what was going to happen, and go their money out of Mexico, but everyone else suffered bank runs, the banks changing rules, a jump in crime rates, etc. The author's advice:
Buy land, buy non-perishable food, buy gold and/or silver, buy anything but keeping your money locked up in a bank or investment house where the future rules are bound to be broken, and you end up paying for it. When it comes to the government, banks and other institutions, trust no one! Take care of yourself and your family now, instead of kicking yourself later on for not taking action sooner!
- "Martial Law – Everything You Need to Know" by Charles Yor, The Survivalist Blog. The author explains what is martial law:
Martial law is simply speaking a military assumption of control over typically civilian functions of law enforcement and government. Under martial law, military rule and law will typically apply to civilians, and so will military legal proceedings.The reasons that martial law may be declared vary, but it simply means that the military is now formally in charge. Perhaps the most important change in legal proceedings for U.S. citizens will be the suspension of habeas corpus and subjection to military courts martial instead of the civil court system we all know and (ostensibly) enjoy, as well as suspension of civil liberties for the duration.
The rest of the article discusses what life will be like under martial law, including curfews or other restrictions on movement, restrictions on assembly or speech, and similar. Of course, how normal life will be will depend on why martial law was declared and how much the civilian government still operates. For instance, after the invasion of Iraq, the coalition forces disbanded the Iraqi military and police because they were dominated by Baathists. The result was an almost complete lack of law enforcement with, as you would expect, a concomitant increase in crime. Other government functions such as provision of utilities also suffered.
- PDF download: Ammunition Making (176 pp) by George E. Frost and published by the NRA. This seems to be an appropriate topic given the dearth of ammunition (or reloading supplies) on store shelves.
- "Secrets of Doing Laundry Off-grid – Refugee Style"--Apartment Prepper. Tips and recommendations is having each family member wash their own underwear and socks while showering, using a wash tub and a (new) toilet plunger altered to make it useful for washing clothes, and using liquid soap as a laundry detergent. (Most liquid "soaps" actually are detergent, so this is not a stretch; I've also found plain old Ivory soap can work with washing clothes).
- "The Russian Federation’s Military Doctrine, Plans, And Capabilities For Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP) Attack"--American Partisan. From the article:
Any nuclear weapon detonated in outer space, 30 kilometers or higher, will generate a high-altitude electromagnetic pulse (HEMP) damaging all kinds of electronics, blacking-out electric grids and collapsing other life-sustaining critical infrastructures. No blast, thermal, fallout or effects other than HEMP are experienced in the atmosphere and on the ground.Russian military doctrine, because HEMP attacks electronics, categorizes nuclear HEMP attack as a dimension of Information Warfare, Electronic Warfare and Cyber Warfare, which are modes of warfare operating within the electromagnetic spectrum.Russia has “Super-EMP” weapons specialized for HEMP attack that potentially generate 100,000 volts/meter or higher, greatly exceeding the U.S. military hardening standard (50,000 volts/meter).As a result of its HEMP nuclear tests, the Soviet Union, and today Russia, probably knows a lot more about HEMP effects than the United States.
- "EMP or Power Outage? How to Tell the Difference"--Urban Survival Site. The author shares 5 things to do to determine whether you have suffered a mere power outage or an EMP. Obviously, you will want to check for common causes of a power outage: checking your circuit breaker box. He also suggests listening for explosions (loud bangs or pops): a power outage will generally not involve multiple transformers blowing, but an EMP will probably destroy many at the same time. Where I live, the power company has a web page and telephone line you can visit or call to that will give information about outages. I would expect in an EMP that none of this will be available. The author suggests checking your electronics or trying to start your car as a regular power outage would not effect those items, but an EMP very well might. The author continues:
If after going through the above checklist you determine that an EMP is to blame for the power outage, you’ll need to act fast. A major EMP will throw the country into chaos in a matter of hours.
Within a matter of days, almost all of the available food in the country will have been raided, and panic due to the likelihood of mass starvation will ensue. Here is a list of actions you must take after an EMP attack.
The widespread devastation that an EMP strike would cause cannot be understated. It has been estimated that without electricity, up to 90% of the US population would be dead within a year.
The notion is horrendous to contemplate.A nuclear torpedo drone creeps along the ocean floor, slipping under coastal missile defences and detonating with catastrophic effect close to New York.A vast wall of water rises from the sea, tearing through the city, obliterating all in its wake and leaving the area flooded with toxic radioactivity.When he unveiled plans for his latest military nightmare a few years ago, everyone thought Vladimir Putin was bluffing.Capable of devastating a huge stretch of coastline with a multi-megaton warhead, the Poseidon 2M39 torpedo would set off a chain of deadly radioactive tsunamis that would smash into towns and cities leaving them uninhabitable for decades.This 'doomsday nuke' or 'apocalypse torpedo' seemed just the sort of super weapon that the sabre-rattling Russian leader would dream up to scare the wits out of opponents and bend them to his will.At the time, U.S. officials and defence experts dismissed it as fantasy.But now the grim truth has emerged from the melting Arctic ice: Russia really is developing the Poseidon, sending a chill through the West.
The article notes that the Russians have adapted 3 submarines to carry the weapon, describes in the article as "More than 6ft in diameter and 65ft long, the remotely-controlled weapon is 30 times the size of a standard heavy torpedo and estimated to weigh 100 tons" and being both nuclear armed and nuclear powered. The weapon was originally intended to carry a 100 megaton warhead, but is now armed with only a 2 megaton warhead.
The article mentions that the U.S. had looked into such weapons during the Cold War, but determined that much of the energy would be dissipated when a wave struck the continental shelf. However, the reality is that the U.S. had started looking at tsunamis created by explosions in World War II (see article, "Tsunami Bomb"). I also looked into early research on the effect of underwater nuclear explosions, and a modest sized underwater nuclear blast tested in the Pacific was able to inundate the nearby atoll with 10-foot waves.
As I read the articles on this, it appears to me that the weapon is designed to be launched and stealthily approach a coast from perhaps as far as thousands of miles away, then increase its speed to its maximum speed of 80 to 120 mph as a last dash into shallow water before detonating. Depending on the depth of the detonation, the result could produce a wave, produce a giant plume of radioactive water, or both.
- Related: "Russia reveals giant nuclear torpedo in state TV 'leak'"--BBC (Nov. 12, 2015) (h/t Marcus Wynne). From the article:
Launched by a submarine, it would create "wide areas of radioactive contamination", the document says.The "oceanic multi-purpose Status-6 system" is designed to "destroy important economic installations of the enemy in coastal areas and cause guaranteed devastating damage to the country's territory by creating wide areas of radioactive contamination, rendering them unusable for military, economic or other activity for a long time", the document says.
According to state-run Rossiiskaya Gazeta, the destructive power attributed to the new torpedo's warhead would fit the description of a cobalt bomb.
That would be a type of thermonuclear warhead with a layer of cobalt-59, which on detonation would be transmuted into highly radioactive cobalt-60 with a half-life longer than five years.
Such a weapon would guarantee "that everything living will be killed", the paper said - there would not even be any survivors in bunkers.
A cobalt bomb has never been tested because of the devastating radiation it would unleash.
"But it can be considered as a means of deterrence - like the Perimetr system, which is on combat readiness, which guarantees retaliation with all of Russia's nuclear forces even if command posts and the country's leadership have been annihilated".
- "Burn and Blast Casualties: Triage in Nuclear War" by Jennifer Leaning, M.D. This is a chapter from a book called The Medical Implications of Nuclear War. The full book can be downloaded as a PDF for free (as a guest) from the National Academies Press. The first half of the article details the history of triage and ethical implications, but the latter half addresses modes of injury and applying triage principles.
- Some more light reading: The Effects of Nuclear Weapons, edited by Samuel Glasstone and Philip J. Dolan (a joint DoD and DoE publication). You can read it online here, or download a PDF copy here (660 pp.).
- The galactic current sheet approacheth: "Proxima Centauri shoots out humongous flare, with big implications for alien life"--Space.com. The flare was seen in May 2019 (the star is 4.25 light-years distant, so the flare would have occurred in early 2015) and was around 100 times more powerful than what is seen from our sun.
- It's been a long 10 years, but the U.S. Supreme Court will be taking up another Second Amendment case, New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Corlett, to address "Whether the State's denial of petitioners' applications for concealed-carry licenses for self-defense violated the Second Amendment." (See here and here). The lawsuit was intended to challenge whether States can prohibit persons from carrying a weapon outside the home. The Court's grant of certiorari, however, was drawn up more narrowly to address the "may-issue" aspect of New York's law. This has panicked the Left who believe that the case has the potential to legalize concealed carry in all 50 states. (See, "The Supreme Court’s Conservatives Are Ready to Create a Constitutional Right to Concealed Carry" by Mark Joseph Stern at Slate). Stern is so affrighted that he views this case as justification for Democrats to pack the Court. As always with the Left, Stern is deceptive in his article, ignoring the limited question as written by the Supreme Court, and referencing a flawed 2017 paper that concluded that "shall issue" permit schemes increased homicides, which he apparently chose because it's authors found the largest increase in homicides. On the other hand, as you probably know, Lott and Mustard found that allowing citizens to carry concealed firearms reduced violent crime, including murders. A 2020 RAND Corporation review of the literature concluded that "Evidence that shall-issue concealed-carry laws may increase violent crime is limited. Evidence for the effect of shall-issue laws on total homicides, firearm homicides, robberies, assaults, and rapes is inconclusive." What is clear is that a solid majority of studies prior to 2004, and a significant percentage afterward, found reductions in homicides.
- "Ill. Judge Rules FOID Card Requirement Unconstitutional For Guns In Home"--Second Amendment Foundation.
- George Floyd has become a messiah figure to the Left: "Pelosi criticized over thanking George Floyd for 'sacrificing your life for justice'"--USA Today.
"Thank you, George Floyd, for sacrificing your life for justice. For being there to call out to your mom — how heartbreaking was that — call out for your mom, 'I can't breathe,'" Pelosi said. Floyd's name "will always be synonymous with justice," she said.
- Related: "Nancy Pelosi, High Priestess of the Left’s Cult, Gives Thanks to Floyd Her Savior"--PJ Media.
- Related: "Sign at George Floyd Square tells white people to 'decenter yourself' and 'contribute to the energy of this sacred space rather than drain it'"--Daily Mail. That idea that it is a sacred space is both laughable and blasphemous.
- Of course, this is what the Left holds to be blasphemous: "White lecturer tells students she’s ‘sick’ of talking about Black Lives Matter"--New York Post. Erica Cope, who is white, was teaching a writing course at SUNY Buffalo State College to a class of mostly black students. Per the article, Cope used the statement as an example of something that would get her "cancelled" if she were to say it. Cope is now being investigated by the college's
Stasidiversity officer. I guess her example was spot on.
- Related: "Charlotte arts group APOLOGIZES for funding city's symphony, opera and children's theater since 1958 - calling them 'white, Western Eurocentric organizations'"--Daily Mail. The group is the Arts & Science Council, which has been a main source of funding for arts and cultural groups in the Charlotte area since 1958. Per the article:
The group receives more than $3 million a year directly from the city, along with getting funding from philanthropies. It gave out $4.3 million in grants to 37 arts and culture organizations last year, according to the Charlotte Business Journal. The nonprofit group has an endowment of nearly $40 million.
- "The Courage of Our Convictions: How to fight critical race theory" by Christopher F. Rufo, City Journal. Rufo has this helpful summary of critical race theory:
Critical race theory is an academic discipline, formulated in the 1990s and built on the intellectual framework of identity-based Marxism. Relegated for many years to universities and obscure academic journals, it has increasingly become the default ideology in our public institutions over the past decade. It has been injected into government agencies, public school systems, teacher training programs, and corporate human-resources departments, in the form of diversity-training programs, human-resources modules, public-policy frameworks, and school curricula.Its supporters deploy a series of euphemisms to describe critical race theory, including “equity,” “social justice,” “diversity and inclusion,” and “culturally responsive teaching.” Critical race theorists, masters of language construction, realize that “neo-Marxism” would be a hard sell. Equity, on the other hand, sounds non-threatening and is easily confused with the American principle of equality. But the distinction is vast and important. Indeed, critical race theorists explicitly reject equality—the principle proclaimed in the Declaration of Independence, defended in the Civil War, and codified into law with the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. To them, equality represents “mere nondiscrimination” and provides “camouflage” for white supremacy, patriarchy, and oppression.In contrast to equality, equity as defined and promoted by critical race theorists is little more than reformulated Marxism. In the name of equity, UCLA law professor and critical race theorist Cheryl Harris has proposed suspending private property rights, seizing land and wealth, and redistributing them along racial lines. Critical race guru Ibram X. Kendi, who directs the Center for Antiracist Research at Boston University, has proposed the creation of a federal Department of Antiracism. This department would be independent of (i.e., unaccountable to) the elected branches of government, and would have the power to nullify, veto, or abolish any law at any level of government and curtail the speech of political leaders and others deemed insufficiently “antiracist.”One practical result of the creation of such a department would be the overthrow of capitalism, since, according to Kendi, “In order to truly be antiracist, you also have to truly be anti-capitalist.” In other words, identity is the means; Marxism is the end.An equity-based form of government would mean the end not only of private property but also of individual rights, equality under the law, federalism, and freedom of speech. These would be replaced by race-based redistribution of wealth, group-based rights, active discrimination, and omnipotent bureaucratic authority. Historically, the accusation of “anti-Americanism” has been overused. But in this case, it’s not a matter of interpretation: critical race theory prescribes a revolutionary program that would overturn the principles of the Declaration and destroy the remaining structure of the Constitution.
I question whether the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was ever intended to buttress equality. But even if it was, it's interpretation by government agencies and courts, as well as subsequent amendments, has resulted in it being used, instead, to force equity by, for example, limiting the use of ability or proficiency tests designed to make sure hiring is based on merit, pushing affirmative action programs that favor minorities over whites, creating liability even if racial animus played only a minor role in whatever action is being complained about, and increasingly pushing liability onto companies for acts of employees occurring outside the workplace.
- Related: "The Law That Ate the Constitution" by Helen Andrews, Claremont Review of Books.
One of the most astute observers of contemporary politics, [Christopher] Caldwell argues that the United States now has two constitutions. The first is the one on the books. The second arose in the 1960s and replaced the old liberties with new, incompatible ones based on group identities. “Much of what we have called ‘polarization’ or ‘incivility’ in recent years is something more grave,” he writes. “[I]t is the disagreement over which of the two constitutions shall prevail.” More bracing still, he puts the blame for this crisis on the most sacred totem in American politics: our civil rights legislation.
- Another group to whom we must prostrate ourselves: "Biden's Secretary of State Anthony Blinken will allow embassies to fly the Pride flag on the same pole as the US flag"--Daily Mail.
- Not the first and it won't be the last: "Inside the multi-million dollar orgasm cult endorsed by Hollywood"--The Telegraph. An excerpt:
... In 2004 Daedone founded a group called OneTaste, disseminating (it is hard to go far in this tale without stumbling inadvertently across a double entendre) the practice of what she called orgasmic meditation, or OM.At its peak, OneTaste was reported to be making $12 million a year; it had centres in nine cities, including New York, San Francisco and London, and was endorsed by no less a personage than the high priestess of the vagina, Gwyneth Paltrow.But the organisation has now shut down following accusations by former members of the group, with the FBI reportedly investigating allegations of sex-trafficking, prostitution and violation of labour laws.Those of a delicate disposition may choose to turn away at this point. For this is a story of idealism and desire, of Californian sex communes and three-hour orgasms, of the search for Eden and the worms in the apple of power and money.It is also very, very bizarre.
I believe that we live in a post-Christian and increasingly anti-Christian society and culture, one that is rapidly making it harder for faithful small-o orthodox Christians (that is to say, Christians who do not agree with the party line on sexual issues) to exist meaningfully in the public square. Nobody is going to cancel a Christian for his or her traditional beliefs and practices regarding luxury, avarice, gluttony, or any of the other so-called “deadly sins”. But resist the world’s view on lust, and you find yourself in a world of trouble.
- "Nationalism vs. Patriotism: What's the Difference and Why it Matters"--Ammo Land. The difference, per the article, is that patriotism is focused around "identity and values" while nationality is largely ethnic and rooted in "blood and soil". Nationalism and patriotism also stand in contrast to globalism which the author defines as "a view of politics that values trans-national bureaucracies over the nation state" and "is marked by both its global orientation and hostility toward the nation state". Interestingly, the author notes a distinction between European nationalism, which seeks to expand territory in order to match historical borders or include significant colonies of its nation in other peoples, and American nationalism which seeks to reduce the size of territory by creating separate nation-states based on race (e.g., white nationalism, black nationalism, and Latino groups that want to either attach the American South-West to Mexico or form an independent Latino country). It's an interesting read, so be sure to check it out.
- Deep State Traitor! "Iran foreign minister reveals John Kerry kept in touch about Israeli covert operations"--New York Post. Key part: "Iran’s foreign minister revealed in a leaked recording that former US Secretary of State John Kerry told him about over 200 covert Israeli attacks on Iranian interests in Syria during former President Donald Trump’s administration." In other words, Kerry was providing classified information to Iranian officials during a time when he was not acting as an agent for the United States and, presumably, without authorization. Kerry has denied any such release, stating "This never happened - either when I was Secretary of State or since." Kerry obviously has motive to deny that he released classified information to a foreign power, while Iran's foreign minister has little or nothing to gain by making his statement.
- Speaking of traitors: "George W. Bush Leads Secret Push for Amnesty, Cheap Labor"--Breitbart. From the lede: "Former President George W. Bush told radio host Hugh Hewitt on April 22 that he is working with the Koch Network to help President Joe Biden pass an amnesty and cheap-labor bill through Congress."
- Related: "Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) says the United States Senate should pass an amnesty for illegal aliens enrolled and eligible for former President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program as a stand-alone piece of legislation."--Breitbart.
- Related: "Who Will Be the Next ‘America First’ President?" by Patrick J. Buchanan, Taki's Magazine. The favorable reaction among conservatives should give the GOP pause to consider how popular was Trump's "America First" policy. Buchanan posits that:
As domestic concerns are predominant — the COVID-19 pandemic, the invasion across our Southern border, soaring crime rates, race relations as raw as they have been in decades — it is time for U.S. statesman to look out for America and Americans first, and let the world look out for itself.
And, as for the foreign entanglements that George Washington warned against:
Let Republicans openly reject the Biden administration’s unilateral commitments to fight China for tiny reefs claimed by the Philippines in the South China Sea and Japan in the East China Sea.
And, surely, it is time for that “agonizing reappraisal” of NATO promised by Secretary of State John Foster Dulles in the 1950s.
Why are we still committed, under NATO, to go to war with Russia on behalf of Germany, when the Germans, with their Nord Stream 2 pipeline, are doubling their dependency on Russia’s natural gas?
According to the Atlantic Council President Richard Haas, the U.S. should abandon its policy of “strategic ambiguity” as to what we would do if China attacks Taiwan — and make a commitment to defend Taiwan.
But why should the United States commit to a war with China for an island President Richard Nixon conceded in 1972 was part of China?
Among the reasons Trump won in 2016 is that he offered a foreign policy of easing tensions with Vladimir Putin’s Russia, getting us out of the endless wars of the Middle East, and making free-riding allies pay the cost of their own defense.
Yet, though, currently, we have commitments to fight for 29 NATO nations, there is a push on among our foreign policy elites to add new nations, such as Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova, Finland and Sweden.
But, again, why surrender our freedom to decide whether to fight?
As for South Korea, Japan and Taiwan, each could build a nuclear deterrent, as Israel, Pakistan and India have done. If a war were to be fought with China that could go nuclear, why would we want to be a mandatory participant?
- Get Woke, Go Broke: If you are like most Americans, you probably didn't know that the Oscars were televised on Sunday, April 25, let alone watched them. The ratings for the Oscars have been declining for years, but Sunday night's Oscars showed a decline in viewership exceeding 50% versus last year (a 58% drop according to one source). Also:
“One recent producer of the Oscars, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss confidential metrics, said minute-by-minute post-show ratings analysis indicated that ‘vast swaths’ of people turned off their televisions when celebrities started to opine on politics,” the New York Times reported.
- Go Woke, Go Broke (Part II): One of my sons is a big fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) and so I sat through all six episodes of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier which, as is the norm with Disney, full of wokeness. Critical Drinker has a highly sarcastic review of the series here. Although the series started with decent enough ratings, the wokeness apparently turned off the viewers. A YouTuber calling himself DVD Overlord, and who seems to have a pretty good track record on getting inside information, noted that 80% of viewers watching the second episode turned off the episode in the middle during a BLM style scene.
Overlord DVD claims that a source communicated to him that the tune out time stamp (TOTS) for the second episode of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier revealed viewers stopped watching the show before the episode ended.As explained by Overlord DVD, TOTS “is logged on Disney+ whenever a viewer stops watching a particular movie or television episode. It’s useful to the bean counters at Disney+ to note when they lose a particular viewer because this can give them valuable data about how the show is doing and what that viewer thinks about it.”He goes on to state, “This source claims that around 5 p.m. on Saturday across the board, the time out tune stamp numbers for the second episode of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier went crazy with people turning the show off in droves all at around the same part of the show within seconds of each other.”Overlord DVD then quotes his source as to what the cause could be for all of these viewers tuning out at the same time. The source says, “My jaw hit the floor. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. All the turn out was at the cop scene where it clearly shows they were ready to pull their guns on a black guy who was arguing with a white guy. It’s clear that this was the message.”The YouTuber then states, “So, in other words, Disney felt like sticking a black lives matter message smack dab in the middle of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier episode two, and what do you know, apparently fans who are sick to death of bad news and tragic headlines decided they had had enough and turned off the episode.”
The articles that discuss this rumor question whether this is true, but I find it curious that Disney has yet to release viewership numbers for Episode 3 or later. All that has been released are the numbers for who tuned in for Episode 1 and 2 (i.e., started watching the show).
- Show trial: "Stunning Chauvin Juror Confession: I Was Worried About ‘Rioting And Destruction’ And ‘People Coming To My House’ To Protest Verdict"--The Federalist. It is an alternate juror, but nonetheless was probably something on the minds of the jurors that actually decided the verdict.
- Related: "There’s No Way Americans Can Trust The Jury’s Chauvin Verdict" by Joy Pullman, The Federalist. Just a taste:
Everyone, including these jurors, knew exactly what would happen to them at the hands of mobs like this if they expressed a reasonable doubt about whether a man who died while overdosing and with a serious heart condition was actually killed by a police officer kneeling on him after he had struggled with police repeatedly. Reasonable doubts about whether the jury’s decision was justice or politics seem fully justified.
The “guilty on all counts” verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin for the death of George Floyd was probably a fait accompli. The media had become something of a lynch mob. Before the jury returned their verdict, the President of the United States publicly prayed with Floyd’s family for “a just verdict,” and it’s understandable what verdict the family of the deceased was praying for. Congresswoman Maxine Waters called for more confrontation in the streets if Chauvin was not convicted. . Newspapers – in the hole for “impartial” news, not the opinion pages – continually referred to Chauvin killing Floyd when in fact autopsy showed enough fentanyl to be fatal three times over, a very serious pre-existing cardiovascular condition that could have killed him by itself, and more…but no artifacts of injury to neck, throat, or chest.
- Related: "Chauvin Defense Forensic Expert Targeted By Maryland A.G. and Colleagues"--Legal Insurrection. "Dr. David Fowler was an effective witness for Chauvin, and now Maryland will review his work as the state’s Chief Medical Examiner looking for errors, as an open letter signed by fornensic [sic] colleagues call for his medical license to be investigated." If the Chauvin trial was fair and honest, there would be no need for the Left to resort to intimidation tactics.
- "Pakistan PM Imran Khan urges the Muslim world to unite and use trade boycotts to force the West to pass blasphemy laws to protect the Prophet"--Daily Mail. As far as GDP goes, Muslim countries are almost as irrelevant as African countries, with the exception of the oil producing states and Indonesia. Khan does raise a good point, however: "Khan said insulting Islam's Prophet should be treated in the same way as questioning the Holocaust, which is a crime in some European countries." But just as Leftist leaders don't understand human nature--as evidenced by laws prohibiting questioning the Holocaust--Khan misses the fact that forcing someone to think a certain way acts as a challenge or dare to do the contrary. Laws prohibiting people from questioning the Holocaust merely invites people to do so; similarly, a law prohibiting insulting Mohammed will just encourage people to do so.
- "Horror at sea: 130 migrants drown in Mediterranean after rubber boat heading to Europe capsizes off the coast of Libya"--Daily Mail. The modus operandi of the human smugglers/traffickers is to have so-called "migrants" take a raft into international waters off the coast of Libya, whereupon the rafts would then rendezvous with a ship that would "rescue" them and then take them hundreds of miles to a European port and drop them off; or, in this case, an NGO would send the coordinates of the raft to European authorities so a coast guard or navy ship could "rescue" them. Whatever the case here, it didn't work. From the article:
Alarm Phone, a crisis hotline for migrants in distress in the Mediterranean, said that it had been in contact with the boat in distress for nearly ten hours before it capsized.The organisation said in a statement that it had notified European and Libyan authorities of the GPS position of the boat but only non-state rescue groups actively searched for it.Alarm Phone accused European authorities of refusing to coordinate a search operation, leaving it solely in the hands of the Libyan Coast Guard.
The rescue vessel Ocean Viking, operated by SOS Mediterranee, only came upon the scene after the fact. So, whether the Ocean Viking was supposed to have rendezvoused with the raft or Alarm Phone assumed that there would be a European coast guard or naval vessel in the area and for that reason didn't have the raft turn back, the NGOs should bear some of the responsibility for the deaths.
- Consequences: "Ex-model says she’s a victim of disturbing ‘e-whoring’ trend online"--New York Post. Basically, it involves people gathering nude photos of women posted to social media and then selling or trading them. "These social-media bottom feeders then disseminated the snaps across the internet for use in fake media profiles to porn sites, and even ads for escort services." I would think by now that people, like the model in this story, should expect that any image posted online could be downloaded or shared.
- "Couples say this new bedroom trend is saving their marriage"--New York Post. That trend being sleeping in different beds or, even, separate bed rooms.
- "Pennsylvania kids playing dangerous ‘Assassin’ game with drive-by BB shootings"--New York Post. Assuming that this is the traditional "Assassin" game, it works by a group signing up for the game, and each person being given the name of another person in the group--this is your target who you have to "kill". If you "kill" your target, you then collect the name of his/her target and that person becomes your next target. Last man (or woman) standing wins the game. The article makes it sound like using BB guns for drive-by shootings is the only way to play the game. It's not. When a large group in my high school played it, yes, there were those using rubber band guns or the ever popular disk guns, but we also had people using flour or Vaseline as "poison" or packages that, when opened, would have a message indicating that you had been killed by a bomb. I, for instance, was killed when someone surprised me between classes and blew flour in my face from a tube, which was to mimic a poison dust. The school tolerated the toy guns until the principal got caught in the cross fire between a couple kids using rubber band guns, after which the toy guns were banned on campus. It was a lot of fun.
- "The American deep state is going to plunge America into World War III, and most cities in America will become nuclear wastelands."--Metallicman. This isn't really any great secret: the Democrats and neo-cons have been pushing for war with Russia since the Obama Administration while simultaneously pursuing a strategy of appeasement with China that mirrors that taken with the Nazis prior to WWII. But the article also includes a long list of CIA misfeasance, including its long involvement (at least since the 1960s) in the drug trade in order to fund its shenanigans. In this regard, the author has some quotes from various politicians warning of the CIA's growing power. For instance, he quotes from Harry Truman:
“Those fellows in the CIA don’t just report on wars, they go out and make their own (wars), and there’s nobody to keep track of what they’re up to. They spend billions of dollars on stirring up trouble. The CIA has become a government all of its own.”
Those quotes are 60+ years old, so imagine what power and wealth the CIA has amassed by now.
- Related: "Truman Was Right About the CIA"--Mises Wire.
- "Did the Navy Build Secret Undersea Lairs for Its Nuclear Submarines?" by Steve Weintz, National Interest. From the article:
By 1966 the two surges into outer space and “inner space” were at their flood tide. While NASA gathered ever more momentum with monthly Gemini flights and a new Mission Control, the success of Sealab II and the CONSHELF III underwater habitat led to a presidential commission on oceanography and a bigger undersea commitment.The Navy’s efforts to recover a lost hydrogen bomb off the coast of Spain that year and the loss of the attack sub USS Thresher three years before had brought new funding and discipline to deep submergence systems. In such heady times, dreams of colonizing the continental shelf within a generation seemed like sober predictions.It was in this environment that C.F. Austin of the China Lake Naval Ordnance Test Station proposed the Rock-Site concept: manned undersea installations excavated into the rock of the seafloor. By applying well-understood principles employed for decades by the mining industry, Austin proposed that large bases could be constructed and operated anywhere suitable bedrock occurred in the ocean, at any depth.Austin realized that even with mid-1960's technology, it would be possible to sink a wide shaft into the sea floor, seal and drain it, then use it as a staging area for further excavation. A tunnel-boring machine could be lowered into the shaft in pieces and then assembled to bore out more tunnels, including one for a small modular nuclear reactor much like those used at Camp Century in Greenland and McMurdo Base in Antarctica.There’s very little hype in Austin’s report; the bulk of it is taken up with documentation of tunneling methods and mining operations conducted under the sea floor. These often follow seams and drifts underground as they continue offshore.According to Austin, one Nova Scotia mine, Dominion Coal’s Cape Breton operation, consisted of “a complex of many consolidated undersea mines ranging in depth from 200 to 2,700 feet below the sea floor, with a water cover of 60 to 100 feet. These mines span an area of approximately 75 square miles and presently employ some 4,100 men in the undersea workings.”Among the benefits of Rock-Site, Austin noted its immunity to weather and currents, its shirt-sleeve environment and its (very) controlled access. And Austin was not thinking small. “Structures within the sea floor can easily be made large and comfortable enough to permit the quartering of crews and their families for extended periods of time,” he wrote, “and can be made large enough to serve as supply and repair depots for large submersibles.”Recent research on hardened missile basing concepts have proven various techniques for creating submarine-sized structures in hard substrates. The Air Force’s development of underground silos, subways and central commands produced real-world hardware and experience with construction techniques.In the 1970s the Los Alamos National Lab investigated an atomic rock-drilling concept called the Nuclear Subterrene, which like Rock-Site sounds like something out of Johnny Quest, but also really happened. One wonders what might have happened had the Navy put its nuclear expertise to work drilling holes in the ocean floor.
The author notes that by 1971, all research into man-in-the-sea development was classified. Thus, it is unknown whether the Navy ever went ahead with such projects.
- "UFO expert debunks Navy footage of mysterious pyramid-shaped objects"--New York Post. The FAA compliant blinking navigation lights were the giveaway.