- "TRAINING DESIGN: Mirror Neurons, Facial Recognition, And Undercover Counter-Terror" by Marcus Wynne. An excerpt:
I have ongoing discussions with friends and colleagues at the Joint Special Operations University Special Operations Forces Design Group that involve compiling a matrix of knowledge, skills, abilities, and attributes that will be most useful in the next generation of SOF operators....
My position is that cognitive dominance starts with what we’re born with, and learning to maximize cognitive potential BEFORE we start tinkering with enhancement of all the various kinds, is the most expeditious and fiscally doable method to start establishing cognitive dominance as a baseline skill set in SOF operators.Superior pattern recognition is one of my contributions, and the mirror neurons (which have been a focus of study for barely three years) play an important part in visual processing and pattern recognition for human facial geometry and other biometric elements that add up to recognition in the brain. Artificial intelligence hasn’t (yet) caught up for reliable robust application in the field, as Annie Jacobsen’s story illustrates. Future SOF operators will be working in non-permissive environments and may not enjoy the technological dominance in order to ensure robust use of AI/facial recognition in the field — and in any event, the “bare-naked warrior” that a Warrior-Diplomat must be before you start strapping on the high tech will need to have that baseline cognitive skill enhanced to meet the demands of covert, clandestine and deniable operations in the Grey Zone of emergent warfare.
He goes on to sketch out a training design intended to train superior pattern recognition in face to face interaction, specifically for undercover counter-terror operators.
- "Infantry Weapons & Effectiveness in Korea" (Part 1) (Part 2)--Loose Rounds. The author highlights some points raised in after action reports from troops serving in Korea. In the first part, the main two points were: (i) the troops didn't have a lot of confidence in the M1 Carbine; and (ii) most shooting with the infantry rifle occurred within 150 to 200 yards. In fact, quoting from one report:
The average effective infantry fire with weapons lighter than the machine gun was consistently less than 200 yards. In no instance was it established, in the operations brought under survey, that any significant move by enemy forces had been stopped and turned by rifle and carbine fire alone at ranges in excess of that figure.
The author observes that just this fact alone establishes that "the M14 was obsolete the day the first STG44 was handed to the first German rifleman." However, it was not just Korea. Essentially the same information came from studies in World War II that showed the vast majority of engagements occurred at less than 300 yards. With the wide-spread adoption of LPVOs, we might see engagement ranges start to move back toward 300 or 400 yards.
The second part is mostly on the issue of whether riflemen should be armed with automatic weapons, or stick with semi-auto. It also touches on the difference between how troops used movement and firepower in nighttime engagements versus in daylight.
- "Concealed Carry Corner: Taking A Look At Carry Ammo"--The Firearms Blog. The author of this piece seems to think that the purpose of hollow-point ammo is to prevent over-penetration, writing:
... Other calibers like 9mm Luger have the potential to over-penetrate so it’s even more important to get self-defense rounds for your carry gun if that’s the case. Every round you fire in a self-defense situation will be accountable. Keeping in mind, those include the rounds that over-penetrate and keep going once they are through a target.
The problem with over-penetration is the fact it basically punches clean holes into your target instead of properly transferring the round’s energy. Having a round that’s specifically built for self-defense will help ensure all the energy is transferred into your target. Having the extra energy go into your target will be much more effective than simply passing through your target and continuing on. If you take over-penetration out of the mix, it’s always a good idea to carry a well-made self-defense round.
I'm sorry, but no and no. While such rounds do tend to limit over-penetration, that is not the point of using hollow point pistol ammo. Likewise, your typical defensive pistol ammo does not have enough energy to cause hydrostatic shock in the target, so dumping energy into the target is also not a reason for hollow point bullets. Rather, the purpose of hollow point bullets is to cause a larger diameter wound cavity and, with certain designs, using some nasty sharp petals to do some extra slicing and dicing.
- "6.5 Grendel VS 6.5 Creedmoor: Which Is Right For You?" by Elwood Shelton, Gun Digest. The author notes that just based on pure ballistics, the 6.5 Creedmoor is the better cartridge. But...
While velocity, energy and ballistic coefficient are important factors to consider when evaluating a cartridge, they’re not the end-all, be-all. There is also a little matter of the gun that shoots it. And if you’re like most Americans, you’ve likely got a love affair with the AR-15. If so, then the Grendel has you covered.
The 6.5 Creedmoor is predominantly found in bolt-action rifles, though there are plenty of AR-10 options on the market. And the AR-10 certainly isn’t the AR-15, despite sharing the same operating system. In most examples, the AR-10 is heavier and longer barreled than the AR-15, plus highly proprietary, which makes upgrades and conversions a bit more of a hassle. If you’re humping stand to stand calling coyotes or shimming up to a tree stand for whitetail, you appreciate the more svelte AR-15.
Though, you must do your homework and truly consider what you want out of the 6.5 Grendel AR-15 before jumping that direction. As is the case with most cartridges, the 6.5 Grendel performs better out of a longer barrel. Bill Alexander himself suggests a 20- or 24-inch option for hunting, as going shorter will surrender velocity. That said, if mobility is key in a system that delivers fast follow-up shots, a 16- to 18-inch 6.5 Grendel AR-15 will get the job done. Just don’t expect the build to ring steel at 1,000 yards like it was going out of style.Some of the similar constraints hold true for the 6.5 Creedmoor. While there are certainly 18-inch barrel models on the market, they’re not exactly long-range wunderkinds. There you’re looking at a 22-inch barrel and up to get the maximum performance, which as in the case of the Grendel, adds up to a substantial rifle—maybe one you wouldn’t want to drag through the bramble.Recoil-wise, the Creedmoor is certainly a mild-mannered shooter, but it’s nothing compared to the Grendel. Chances are in a blind shooting test you’d have difficulty telling the difference between the Grendel and the 5.56 NATO. You definitely could between the latter and the Creedmoor. In turn, if you need a rifle where shot-to-shot accuracy is at a premium, something where your cheek weld won’t break after each trigger pull, the Grendel will deliver. A major advantage when a sounder it tearing up that deer plot you worked on all summer. Or if you’re looking for a hard-hitting tactical option.
- "6.5 Creedmoor vs .243 Win – Cartridge Comparison"--Sniper Country. An interesting comparison. Both have less recoil than other deer hunting cartridges, but the .243 is much less. Also, within 450 yards, the .243 has a higher velocity; within 700 yards, the .243 also has less drop. But the 6.5 has better long range ballistics and is better able to buck the wind. Looking at cross sectional density and momentum, the 6.5 should have better penetration than the .243.
- It looks like Smith & Wesson has come up with an improved version of Keltec's KSG shogun: "First Look: Smith & Wesson M&P12 Shotgun"--Shooting Illustrated. It is a 12 gauge, double-tube, bull-pup, pump action shotgun. Some improvements include an external switch to switch between tubes (with the KSG you have to toggle a switch located inside the ejection/loading port), an AR style safety selector (the KSG has a cross-bolt style), and a barrel threaded for chokes and including a couple of chokes.
- More: "S&W M&P 12: the Smith & Wesson Bullpup Shotgun"--The Mag Life.
- "The RFP875 Multi-Purpose Rangefinder from X-Vision Optics"--The Firearms Blog. The MSRP is $208.99 and it ranges out to 875 yards. Per the article, "[t]he X-Vision Optics RFP875 is a multi-purpose rangefinder that features standard, fog, golf, and hunting modes[.]" I know that 875 yards isn't all that far for modern range finders, but it seems pretty good for this price point. I have an older range finder from, I believe, Bushnell, that has about the same maximum range. I use it for various things, including measuring the appropriate distances for placing my targets when shooting or sighting in.
- "FN 509 MRD-LE Selected As The New LAPD Duty Pistol"--The Firearms Blog. This model is set up to accept red-dot sights. The article indicates that the contract is for a total of 10,000 pistols for equipping the LAPD's entire force. The LAPD currently allows its officer to use quite a variety of different handguns of several different calibers. It sounds like that with this pistol, the LAPD will be standardizing around a single handgun (not including the 1911s used by its SWAT team, I'm sure) with the potential for a number of heavily carried, lightly used, handguns to show up on the market.
- News from Houston: "Witness saw father of two shot to death after suspects on ATVs, dirt bikes, bicycles surrounded his car on Westheimer"--KHOU-11. The article reports:
A father of two was shot to death on Westheimer late last week after a group surrounded his car and tried to get inside.Police said a group of men on ATVs, dirt bikes and bicycles surrounded the 48-year-old victim's car on Friday around 7:30 p.m. They were kicking his doors and trying to break in, police said.Someone pulled out a gun and shot the victim, according to police.Cheryl Draper was stuck in traffic an saw it happen."It's just like cold-blooded murder; didn't even hesitate," she said. "Pulled out a gun and shot someone."
- "LDS: ONE YEAR OF FOOD FOR LESS THAN $600"--American Partisan. The table appears to be the food for one person for one year assuming a 2540 to 2720 kcal per day. It is a pretty basic diet, but with more variety than the traditional basic-5 plan or the rice and bean plans I've seen.
- Useful information: "Colorful Language: Decoding Utility Markings Spray Painted On City Streets"--99% Invisible.
- "The Argentina Collapse"--Survival Spot. An excerpt:
Someone once asked me how did those that live in the country fare. If they were better off than city dwellers. As always there are no simple answers. Wish I could say country good, city bad, but I can’t, because if I have to be completely honest, and I intend to be so, there are some issues that have to be analyzed, especially security and security monitoring methods. Of course that those that live in the country and have some land and animals were better prepared food-wise. No need to have several acres full of crops. A few fruit trees, some animals, such as chickens, cows and rabbits, and a small orchard was enough to be light years ahead of those in the cities. Chickens, eggs and rabbits would provide the proteins, a cow or two for milk and cheese, some vegetables and fruit plants covered the vegetable diet, and some eggs or a rabbit could be traded for flower to make bread and pasta or sugar and salt.Of course that there are exceptions, for example, some provinces up north have desert climate and it almost never rains. It is almost impossible to live of the land, and animals require food and water you have to buy. Those guys had it bad; no wonder the Northern provinces suffer the most in my country. Those that live in cities, well they have to manage as they can. Since food prices went up about 200%-300%. People would cut expenses wherever they could so they could buy food. Some ate whatever they could; they hunted birds or ate street dogs and cats, others starved. When it comes to food, cities suck in a crisis. It is usually the lack of food or the impossibility to acquire it that starts the rioting and looting when TSHTF.When it comes to security things get even more complicated. Forget about shooting those that mean you harm from 300 yards away with your MBR. Leave that notion to armchair commandos and 12 year old kids that pretend to be grown ups on the internet.Some facts:
- Those that want to harm you/steal from you don’t come with a pirate flag waving over their heads.
- Neither do they start shooting at you 200 yards away.
- They won’t come riding loud bikes or dressed with their orange, convict just escaped from prison jump suits, so that you can identify them the better. Nor do they all wear chains around their necks and leather jackets. If I had a dollar for each time a person that got robbed told me “They looked like NORMAL people, dressed better than we are”, honestly, I would have enough money for a nice gun. There are exceptions, but don’t expect them to dress like in the movies.
- A man with a wife and two or three kids can’t set up a watch. I don’t care if you are SEAL, SWAT or John Freaking Rambo, no 6th sense is going to tell you that there is a guy pointing a gun at your back when you are trying to fix the water pump that just broke, or carrying a big heavy bag of dried beans you bought that morning.
The best alarm system anyone can have in a farm are dogs. But dogs can get killed and poisoned. A friend of mine had all four dogs poisoned on his farm one night, they all died. After all these years I learned that even though the person that lives out in the country is safer when it comes to small time robberies, that same person is more exposed to extremely violent home robberies. Criminals know that they are isolated and their feeling of invulnerability is boosted. When they assault a country home or farm, they will usually stay there for hours or days torturing the owners. I heard it all: women and children getting raped, people tied to the beds and tortured with electricity, beatings, burned with acetylene torches. Big cities aren’t much safer for the survivalist that decides to stay in the city. He will have to face express kidnappings, robberies, and pretty much risking getting shot for what’s in his pockets or even his clothes.
This is a great article with lots more information and tips, so be sure to read the whole thing.
- From August 14: "Massive Earthquake Hits Haiti, Thousands Feared Dead"--The Daily Wire. A shallow 7.2 magnitude quake. The article notes that this was a stronger quake than 2010 quake which devastated the country.
- August 15: "SECOND earthquake rocks Haiti after devastating 7.2 tremor left at least 724 dead as huge quake sparks tsunami warning"--The Sun. This was a 5.8 magnitude earthquake centered on a different location.
- August 16: "Haiti earthquake death toll rises to 1,297 with at least 5,700 injured: Rescuers rush to find survivors as tropical storm approaches the island"--Daily Mail.
- "THREE volcanoes are erupting simultaneously along Alaska's 'Ring of Fire', with geological experts monitoring their increasing strength"--Daily Mail. Per the article, "Pavlof, Great Sitkin and Semisopochnoi Volcanoes all remain under an orange threat level Friday, signaling that eruptions are underway and minor ash emissions have been detected. They sit along the remote Aleutian Islands, known as the 'Ring of Fire,' so called because of the number of volcanoes that sit along a deep oceanic belt running under the islands."
- "Anthony Fauci Claims With COVID There Are No More Individual Rights"--The Last Refuge.
- Related: "5 Times More Children Died By Suicide Than Died From COVID In The UK"--The Daily Wire.
- "Most vaccine-hesitant group is those with PhDs, research shows"--The College Fix. "So not only are the most educated people most sceptical [sic] of taking the Covid vaccine, they are also the least likely the change their minds about it…"
- "Bombshell: COVID Fatality Rate Hits Lowest Level on Record Despite Media Hysteria Over Delta"--Western Journal. The reporter that authored this article took a look at U.S. data and revealed that "we see a sharp decline beginning around July 15 — a decline taking us from 2.29 percent to around 0.70 percent as of Tuesday."
- "New Research Shows – Heart Inflammation After COVID Vaxx More Common Than CDC Claims"--The Liberty Beacon.
A new study published in JAMA shows 1 in 100,000 people had vaccine-related myocarditis and 1.8 in 100,000 people had pericarditis — compared to the CDC’s data that 4.8 people per 1 million suffer myocarditis after receiving a COVID vaccine.
- "Children born during pandemic have lower IQs, US study finds"--The Guardian. The article indicates:
In the decade preceding the pandemic, the mean IQ score on standardised tests for children aged between three months and three years of age hovered around 100, but for children born during the pandemic that number tumbled to 78, according to the analysis, which is yet to be peer-reviewed.
I'm not sure what to make of this. The article suggests that the lower scores were because of "Covid-19 triggering the closure of businesses, nurseries, schools and playgrounds, life for infants changed considerably, with parents stressed and stretched as they tried to balance work and childcare." But I can't wonder if it is because "[t]he number of white people in the US has declined for the first time in history while Hispanic and Asian populations grew, according to census report."
- And you thought you might never need a year's supply of food: "Delusional Los Angeles Officials Push New Rule to STARVE OUT the Unvaccinated by Denying Them Access to Retail Grocery Stores"--American Conservative Movement. Per the article, a proposed L.A. ordinance requires people to show proof of COVID vaccination as a prerequisite to enter any indoor public space in the city which would, necessarily, include grocery stores.
- Heh: "Why Don’t They Believe Us?" by Konstantin Kisin, Tablet Magazine. "You’re struggling to understand where all this vaccine hesitancy comes from. Let me help you." He details the whipsawing of the narrative and the cognitive dissonance and concludes:
The same people who told you Brexit would never happen, that Trump would never win, that when he did win it was because of Russian collusion but also because of racism, that you must follow lockdowns while they don’t, that masks don’t work, that masks do work, that social justice protests during pandemic lockdowns are a form of “health intervention,” that ransacking African American communities in the name of fighting racism is a “mostly peaceful” form of protest, that poor and underserved children locked out of shuttered schools are “still learning,” that Jussie Smollett was a victim of a hate crime, that men are toxic, that there is an infinite number of genders, that COVID couldn’t have come from a lab until maybe it did, that closing borders is racist until maybe it isn’t, that you shouldn’t take Trump’s vaccine, that you must take the vaccine developed during the Trump administration, that Andrew Cuomo is a great leader, that Andrew Cuomo is a granny killer, that the number of COVID deaths is one thing and then another … are the same people telling you now that the vaccine is safe, that you must take it, and that if you don’t, you will be a second-class citizen.
The Collapse of Empire:
- "Civil War 2.0 Weather Report: Life at Two Minutes To Midnight"--Wilder, Wealthy & Wise. Still at step 9: "Common violence that is generally deemed by governmental authorities as justified based on ideology." An excerpt:
It’s bad. In Chicago, 2,249 people have been shot this year as of July 29 (LINK), which is nearly 700 more than in all of 2019. At this rate, more people will be shot in just Chicago this year than during the entire Falkland Island War between Great Britain and Argentina. This is patent proof that black lives don’t matter to Black Lives Matter®, since deaths of unarmed black people at the hands of cops in all of 2019 were, according to USA Today™ (LINK) only . . . 25.Unjustified use of police force is horrible. But . . . cops killing unarmed black people is nearly the smallest problem faced by black people in the United States. BLM©? It’s a lie.
- Allison Morrow interviewed Michael Yon on August 15 about Afghanistan, the illegal immigration crises (and how it is just going to get worse), and how a civil war might break out in the United States. The link to the video is here. It is an hour long, but well worth the time to watch or listen to.
- "2032: The Year Social Security Runs Out Of Cash"--1945. "[A] July update by the Congressional Budget Office to its 2021 Long-Term Projections for Social Security, the Social Security Trust Fund is scheduled to become depleted in 2032." Faster with the passage of the new "infrastructure" bill and the planned $3 trillion spending bill.
- One of the telling signs of a country or empire in collapse is that citizenship increasingly declines in value, whether it is the loss of freedoms or privileges, the dilution of the citizenry with immigrants being given citizenship, or the extension to non-citizens of rights previously reserved only to citizens. The latest example: "Biden Goes Full America-Last, Won’t Prioritize Getting Americans Out of Kabul Over Afghans" by Robert Spencer, PJ Media.
- More: "America Last: Biden Will Not Prioritize Americans Over Afghans in Afghanistan Evacuation"--Breitbart.
- "Joe Biden’s defeat will echo for eternity" by Miranda Devine, New York Post. She has a nice summary of the major points of Trump's plan for getting out of Afghanistan that wouldn't have been the disaster under Biden. But here is probably the key point: Trump was "obstructed by the same US generals who gave Biden a green light." What happened this last weekend is not just the fault of Biden. Even if we believe that "the buck stops here" at Biden's desk, we cannot forget that the real authors of this disaster are the intelligence community and senior military officers.
- "US declares first-ever Western reservoir water shortage - sparking cuts of up to 18% for Arizona, Nevada and Mexico beginning in October"--Daily Mail. Because Lake Mead is at record lows, "US officials declared the first-ever federal water shortage on Monday, from a river that serves 40 million people in the West, triggering cuts to some Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico farmers next year amid a gripping drought." Per the article, California is going to be spared cuts because it has more senior water rights than the other states.
- The Taliban are using the Leftist playbook: "Taliban 'Collect' Weapons From Civilians In Kabul As They 'No Longer Need Personal Protection'"--Loose Rounds.
- "The Breonna Taylor story the left doesn't want you to hear" by John Mattingly, American Thinker. Mattingly was one of the officers that served the search warrant that led to the shooting. He writes:
I cannot continue to sit by and watch the media twist the narrative of what happened that night into a work of fiction that serves to support their anti-police agenda. In reality, my colleagues and I hammered on the door several times — "Police, search warrant!" — over and over, with no response. After several attempts to get someone to open the door, we were forced to make entry. I was the first officer to attempt to make an entry into the apartment and was met with gunfire by Walker before I was able to enter the apartment. Breonna was tragically standing right next to him. She wasn't asleep.
I don't believe anyone has asserted that she was asleep at the time she was shot nor has anyone denied that Taylor's boyfriend open fired on the police (see this New York Times article). Rather, it was a case of yet another innocent person killed in a violent drug raid timed to catch a person fast asleep and typically unable to answer a door before it gets kicked in. The fact that it was a black women led to public attention and rioting as opposed to the silence and sweeping the incident under the rug as would happen if it had been a white victim. Whether no knock or night time warrants, they are both types of warrant service that were only used sparingly before the so-called war on drugs (and, I believe, almost completely unknown before Prohibition) because they don't really have a place in a free country except in unusual cases. I lay part of the blame on the judges that hand them out like candy, as well as the police and prosecutors that request these types of warrants.
- "Texas Lawmakers Thwart Chinese Communist’s Plan to Connect to State’s Electricity Grid"--Breitbart. This involves Sun Guangxin, the same Chinese billionaire with ties to the CCP that purchased 140,000 acres near Laughlin Air Force Base.
- We didn't start the fire: "Lethal coalitionary attacks of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes troglodytes) on gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) in the wild"--Scientific Reports. In English, chimpanzees went to war against a band of gorillas.
- "This Giant, Hazardous Asteroid Almost Certainly Won't Hit Us, Probably, NASA Says"--Science Alert. The asteroid in question is Bennu, "a 'rubble pile' asteroid, a porous conglomeration of rocks that came together under gravity, with a mean diameter of around 490 meters (1,610 feet)." NASA says that we shouldn't worry--not only because it would be outside our lifetimes, but also because the chance of it hitting the Earth is just 0.057 percent – or one chance in 1,750. That is, I would point out, the same chance of you dying from Covid-19, but you should definitely worry about that!