Words of Advice:

"Never Feel Sorry For Anyone Who Owns an Airplane."-- Tina Marie

If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

Flying the Airplane is More Important than Radioing Your Plight to a Person on the Ground
Who is Incapable of Understanding or Doing Anything About It.
" -- Unknown

"There seems to be almost no problem that Congress cannot,
by diligent efforts and careful legislative drafting, make ten times worse.
" -- Me

"What the hell is an `Aluminum Falcon'?" -- Emperor Palpatine

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Sunday, October 23, 2016

So Why Was Trump Able to Do Well in GOP Debates?

He was in oodles of them, something like twelve debates and nine forums. And yet, in damn few, if any of them, was anyone able to land a decent victory, let alone a damaging blow, against Trump.

But Hillary Clinton cleaned his clock every time. Why was that?

I have two ideas about that.

First off, the other GOP candidates were afraid to go hard after Trump. In the back of their minds had to have been the thought that if they were too rough on His Orangeness, that the voters who backed Trump might not back them post-convention. That's always a concern; they want to win, but they also need the other candidates supporters to turn out for them in November.

Remember how much it was a concern that Sanders voters might not turn for Clinton? People were talking about that a few months ago, but Trump's inherent awfulness seems to have largely quieted that down.

The second reason that Clinton was able to carve up Trump like a pot roast may have to do with Trump's bone-deep misogyny. He clearly has no respect for women and it bothers him to his puerile core that he has to fight against one.

Whether it was misogyny or arrogance that prevented Trump from learning from the first debate is a good question. I suspect it was more the former, he couldn't believe that He, The Donald was being beaten like a gong by a woman. Trump couldn't comprehend that he just couldn't go into the debates and wing it with a bunch of snappy one-liners. In retrospect, Clinton studied Trump and had a plan on what buttons to push and when to push them. The invocation of the Miss Universe that Trump thought was fat was genius-- Trump stepped on his crank, then put on his golfing shoes and kept stepping on it for days.

So now, the GOP is going around, trying to persuade people to split their tickets and vote for the down-ballot Republicans. Which is an indication that they think Trump is going to be shellacked.

Is It Just Me, Or .... "Come the Revolution" Ed.

Is it just me, or does it seem as though at least have of the people blathering about "the revolution that will happen if Clinton wins" are obese, grey-haired white dudes, half of whom have beards?

As BadTux has pointed out, based on what happened at Malheur, there isn't going to be any such revolution. Every leftist group, including the Quakers, already knows that any time they plan a protest, at least some of the planners are spying on them for the local cops, the Army or the FBI.

It's no different with the right-wing groups. They're all riddled with informers. By the time five or six people are involved, figure at least one of them is a rat.

And that doesn't even get to the part that a revolutionary group of old, fat white guys isn't going to raise much of a sweat for the government when it comes time to crush them.

Your Sunday Morning Jet Noise

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Stay Classy, Mississippi

The historical sign marking where Emmett Till’s body was found in the Tallahatchie River in 1955 has been riddled with bullets.

Since the Emmett Till Memorial Commission put up eight markers in Tallahatchie County in 2008, the sign near the river has been a repeated target of vandals.

It’s one of a number of civil rights markers and symbols that have been vandalized in Mississippi over the past decade.

Donald the Blowhard Loves SLAPP Suites

Donald Trump on Saturday pledged postelection lawsuits against every woman who has accused him of sexual assault or other inappropriate behavior, and he charged Hillary Clinton's campaign and the Democratic Party with orchestrating the allegations.

"Every one of these liars will be sued once the election is over," Trump said, adding, "I look so forward to doing that."
And here is hoping that, when he does that, he gets his ass sanctioned by the courts. Trump has said, in various interviews in the past, that he did much of what he is accused of doing.

Litigating this shit also keeps the accusations alive for years. But he doesn't think like that. Trump is a short-fingered bully, this threat is just more evidence of that. He has a very big mouth and a very thin skin.

Next month, when he stands a very good chance of losing to the most electorally vulnerable Democratic candidate since Alton Parker, he likely may win the title of the Biggest Loser of the 21st Century. Which may drive him mad.

Musings on Gas & Guns

When you buy premium gas at a gas station, it's probably a good bet that the hose is filled with regular gas. So how much low-octane gas are you getting at premium prices?

This is part of a wall of guns for sale at a gun shop:

It is probably a reasonable bet that by November 12, everything on the wall will have been sold.


Chip was apparently in REM sleep when I shot this photo. The tip of his tail was twitching and so were his whiskers and two of his paws.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Because It's Friday

CT Valley RR:

Fine Korean Whines

Samsung apparently is not satisfied with only making fine exploding mobile phones for home and office. Now they're trying to stop people from making fun of them for it.
Samsung appears to have filed copyright claims against YouTube videos mocking its recalled Galaxy Note 7 handset.

Many gamers have showcased a modification to video game Grand Theft Auto V, in which sticky bombs were switched with exploding Samsung phones.

But some have reported that their videos have been blocked on YouTube following a copyright complaint.
The last time that I looked into this area, satire and parody use is permitted under copyright law. So this would seem to be a case of Butthurt v. Parodiers.

They haven't gotten to this one, yet:

Trying to shut down people who criticize or make fun of your products is a thoroughly dickish move, Samsung.

The Consideration Given to This Child Molester Just Warms the Cockles of His Family's Hearts

Because, let's face it, they have no souls.
More than 40,000 people signed a Change.org petition this month to impeach a Montana judge who imposed a two-month prison sentence to a man convicted of raping his young daughter.

The man, not named to protect the victim's identity, has pleaded guilty to raping his 12-year-old daughter and was originally recommended for a mandatory minimum 25-year prison sentence, according to state law for child incest cases. But District Judge John McKeon instead handed down a punishment of 60 days in jail and a suspended 30-year prison term – that he won’t have to serve if he completes probation – and required the man to attend a community-based sex offender treatment program, as reported by CNN.
The mother wrote the court that her husband "made a horrible choice" but a 25-year prison term was not the best punishment.

"He needs help," she wrote the court. "He has two sons that still love him and need their father in their lives, even with very understandable restrictions. I would like to see my children have an opportunity to heal the relationship with their father. Please give him the opportunity to work on fixing the relationships he destroyed. He is not a monster, just a man that really screwed up and has been paying in many ways."

The grandmother wrote that the man's "children, especially his sons, will be devastated if their Dad is no longer part of their lives."
What none of the family, nor the judge, seemed to give two shits about was the twelve-year old girl that Pervo-Dad repeatedly raped.

If some clown had raped one of my nieces or cousins, the only way I'd be fine with him spending sixty days in jail would be if he went to the gallows on Day 60. And, Gentle Readers, I expect that the same is largely true with you.

The criminal justice system would seem to have a problem when it comes to females as victims of sex crimes. I will hazard a guess that if Pervo-Dad had raped one of his sons, he wouldn't have been let out of prison until the last quarter of this century.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

The Rubot is Smarter Than The Donald

Sen. Marco Rubio advised his fellow Republicans on Wednesday not to use revelations in WikiLeaks as political ammo against Hillary Clinton and other Democrats. ... "As our intelligence agencies have said, these leaks are an effort by a foreign government to interfere with our electoral process and I will not indulge it," Rubio explained.

Rubio, a member of the Senate Intelligence and Foreign Relations committees, added: "I want to warn my fellow Republicans who may want to capitalize politically on these leaks: Today it is the Democrats. Tomorrow it could be us.
Rubio, of course, isn't trying to desperately find anything that will give his campaign traction.

But Rubio also knows that being seen as a tool, however unwittingly, of Vladimir Putin and the FSB is a stench that will hang on the GOP for a very long time. Trump doesn't care about any of that, for he is an opportunist member of the GOP. He has no loyalty whatsoever to the party or any whit of concern about its long-term prospects. If the GOP gets pulled down in ruins around his campaign, he's just fine with that.

I'd call Trump an "opportunistic jackal", except that if jackals were able to contact a lawyer, I could be sued for defaming their character.

Purty Dumb for One of Them Hacking Geniuses

A man identified as a Russian hacker suspected of pursuing targets in the United States has been arrested in the Czech Republic, the police announced Tuesday evening. ... The statement said that “the man was a Russian citizen suspected of hacking attacks on targets in the United States,” and that the raid was conducted in collaboration with the F.B.I. after Interpol issued an arrest warrant for him.
So this genius of a hacker, who might have reasonably assumed that American intelligence and law enforcement knew who he was, wanders into a NATO nation and gets arrested.

Note that the perp was the subject of an Interpol "red notice". Russia is a member of Interpol. If the Russian spooks are heavily into hacking, one might assume that they'd monitor the red notice list and warn their guys know not to leave the country. Which means that this guy may not be one of their pet hackers. Or he just may be as arrogant as Pharma Bro/Sis.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Missing a Significant Aspect, Aviation History Ed.

CNN ran an article about a Lend-Lease C-47 that crashed in Siberia after the war.

It wasn't a bad article. But the stringer who filed it and the editor who approved it missed a bit of history that would have made the article even more poignant:
On May 11 [1947], after almost 20 days in the tundra, a Li-2 transport aircraft spotted the wreck and managed to land next to it to pick up the survivors.
The Li-2 was a license-built copy of, you guessed it, the DC-3. The Soviet Union bought a production license for the DC-3 in 1936. The DC-3, as you probably know, is the big brother of the C-47 and all of its variants.

27 Years On

The Loma Prieta Earthquake wreaked major damage in the San Francisco Bay area, killing 62 people.

If it wasn't for the third game of the 1989 World Series, between Oakland and San Francisco, the death toll might have been higher, as a lot of people who would have been commuting when the quake struck were in front of TV sets.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Despicable Donald

Whether it is employing one of the classic deflectors of sexual predators (attacking the appearance those who dare to accuse him) or casting aspersions on the election without a shred of evidence to support his blatherings, Trump is a despicable whiny little brat in a man suit. Anytime things don't go his way, it's other people's fault. That's been his fine whine his entire life. Trump is not a man, he has no idea how to act like one. he's a juvenile who, thanks to being rich and the privilege that comes with having lots of money, has never had to grow a pair and grow up.

Other Republicans, even his own running mate, are stepping away from Trump's rigging claim. Because they know how dangerous it is to make such a baseless charge.

Meanwhile, as The Donald blames Clinton for the firebombing of a GOP office in North Carolina, it's also possible that it was one of his unhinged supporters who was acting out anger at the GOP's now-tepid support for Trump. Do I have any evidence for that assertion? No, not yet, at any rate. By Trumpian standards, who needs proof of such things?

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Machine Translation Blows Chunks

I picked up a copy of Stephen Hunter's 2008 novel Night of Thunder a few weeks ago at a thrift store.* In the story, the hero says these words, in Vietnamese, to a young girl whose warning saved him and a friend from being ambushed:
"Can on co em. Co that gan da va su can dam cua co da cuu sinh mang chung toi."
I entered that into Google Translate, and this is the result:
"Can shrink on you. Liver is real leather and courage. You saved my life."
All was not lost, however. In a forum about learning Vietnamese, someone had asked about the lines in the book. A Vietnamese-speaker said that this is what they meant:
"Thank you sister. You're very brave and your bravery has saved our lives."
Which makes a lot more sense than does Google's result.
* As a pissant-level writer, I suppose that I should be buying new books so that the authors get paid.

It Just Figures that Pharma Bro is a Republican

Martin Shkreli, one of the most-despised and despicable sacks of sentient protoplasm on the planet, wanted to meet his fans after his last court date. So he tweeted out the name of a bar and announced that he'd pick up the tab. Only he didn't clear it with the bar, which said "nope." So this is what he then tweeted:
Any Republican-friendly bars in Brooklyn?
I guess explaining that he wanted a bar which was friendly to financial pirates accused of fraud and running a Ponzi scheme, but maybe that'd have taken up too many characters for Twitter.

If there is any justice in the world,Shkreli will soon become acquainted with bars, all right: Steel ones.

Your Sunday Morning Jet Noise

No introduction needed!

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Friday, October 14, 2016

Dear Defendants

When a judge explains to you, at the start of a hearing, that (a) you have a right to have an attorney; (b) if you cannot afford one, that one will be appointed to represent you at no cost to you; and (c) the hearing will be postponed until that attorney is brought into the case, well, that is what we call a big-ass, fireworks-shooting, horn-blaring, motherfucking, Captain-Obvious level clue.

And yet.... sigh.


Congress should make it a top priority to ensure that not a cent of American money goes to UNESCO. This is why:
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization voted 24 to 6 to approve a resolution denying the historical connection between Jews and sacred sites in Jerusalem, drawing strong rebukes from leaders in Israel who said Jews will continue to visit the areas.

Jerusalem is home to sites significant to Judaism, Islam and Christianity, with the Temple Mount area and adjoining Western Wall considered the most holy site in the Jewish religion. The UNESCO resolution refers to the area by names used in Islam only, and does not acknowledge any link between Jews and the sacred sites.
I'm not exactly observant in my practice of Judaism, far from it. Yet I've been to the Western Wall and I did put a written prayer in the cracks between the giant stone blocks.

So yes, I take this personally.
Those who supported the motion included Algeria, Bangladesh, Brazil, Chad, China, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Iran, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mauritania, Mexico, Morocco, Mozambique, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Russia, Senegal, South Africa, Sudan and Vietnam.

Nations that abstained from the vote were: Albania, Argentina, Cameroon, Cote de’Ivoire, El Salvador, Spain, France, Ghana, Greece, Guinea, Haiti, India, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Nepal, Uganda, Paraguay, South Korea, St. Kits and Nevis, Slovenia, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Togo, Trinidad and Ukraine.

Absent countries included Serbia and Turkmenistan;

Those who opposed the resolution were: the US, Great Britain, the Netherlands, Lithuania, Germany and Estonia voted against the motion.
Most of the "for" list are islamic nations, and to be frank, I'd expect that sort of historical nonsense from them. To the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua: Next time either of your nations gets hit by a hurricane or an earthquake, go ask your friend the Palestinians for help. To Brazil: Fuck you and may the Zika virus reach a 100% infection rate.

And to Mexico: If Trump wins, I'll cough up to help build his wall, especially if he promises to install a bunch of SM-70s.

As for the abstaining nations: Thanks for nothing, you gutless cocksuckers.

Because It's Friday

High speed steam:

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Pass the Popcorn; Trump's Reputation Dept.

The Donald had his pet lawyers demand that the NY Times retract its story about him groping women because it hurts his reputation.

The response was a mix of "your reputation can't be damaged worse than your own admissions have done" and "go fuck yourself, see ya in court."

David Brooks Has Displaced Doug Feith as the Dumbest Man on Earth

For only now has he figured out that the goal of the far-Right is to destroy democracy and put in place some form of dictatorship.

That's been kind of obvious to the rest of us since about 1981, or at the latest, 1995.

(Source of the title to this post.)

Not Just "Bad Language", Now

There are Trump supporters[1] who have been saying "oh, it's just bad language from Trump. No big deal."

It's more than that. The Bad-Haired Pervert is allegedly a sexual predator.

Trump is saying "why didn't they say so at the time"? Anyone who thinks that doesn't understand what happens when one woman accuses a powerful man of sexual misconduct: She gets fucking buried.[2] Whether powerful men[3] or powerful institutions,[4] nobody believes a single accuser, not until there are multiple accusers and evidence of the accusations.

Trump's campaign seems to now be placing its hopes on emails that it got from an (alleged) fellow sexual predator[5], who got the emails from the Russians. Who never ever would dare to forge or alter them, ya sure, you betcha.

So what we have, now, is an American political candidate who is trying to prop up his campaign with documents that have been furnished by the spooks of a hostile power. His lackeys on the Right see nothing wrong with any of that. But you can bet your paycheck that they'd be calling for Clinton's immediate execution if the situation was reversed.

Still, it is very enjoyable to see the same people, who have spent two decades blasting Bill Clinton for being a sexual predator, now twisting themselves into knots to defend Trump for actions that were worse. (Leering at a 10-year old? Really?)[6]

UPDATE: The hits keep coming.
[1] #DipShits
[2] Ask Anita Hill about that.
[3] Ask Joe Paterno, Dennis Hastert, Bill Clinton and Bill Cosby about that.
[4] Ask the Catholic church about that.
[5] Julian Assange.
[6] On second thought, it's not out of his character.

That Cat Would So Vote for Clinton

150 Years Ago

Colonel Edward Boxer, Royal Artillery, was granted a British patent for the centerfire cartridge priming system that, to this day, bears his name.

What Chris Christie Has Wrought

UPDATE: Christie may be criminally charged over Bridgegate.

The near destruction of one of the premier mass-transit networks in the country. Cutting maintenance, slashing improvement funds, wringing every possible dime out of the budget with no thought as to future effects.

Christie, along with most of his party, despise mass-transit to begin with. That much is a given. In their view, the proles should be walking along dirt paths as the elite glide in on expensive toll roads.

There is also the Wall-Street Disease: A total focus on the short term, with zero planning for any period of time past the present quarter or the current budget cycle. That's why pensions are underfunded, roads are falling apart, and mass-transit systems are breaking down. Tools like Secaucus Fats care not that cutting a million here and there from maintenance budgets means that there will be more breakdowns, more emergent repairs and sooner replacements that will end up costing a few orders of magnitude more money than they have boasted that they saved.

Christie is leaving his state in far worse condition than it was when he took over. He has utterly failed the Boy Scout Test. No wonder he wants to bail to be a lackey in a Trump administration.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea; GOP Ed.

(18 months ago, I didn't know the half of it.)

At the moment, that applies to Republican political candidates. Every day or two brings to light more and more unsavory shit about Donald Trump. I suspect that the current polls understate his problem, as there may be a number of Republican women who are keeping quiet to pollsters and to their families, but will not vote for Trump.

So what do Republican candidates do? The day when one could declare to be #NeverTrump and appear to be principled are long past. Those denouncing Trump now, especially those who have denounced and then backtracked look like practitioners of the low art of expediency.

Those who now drop Trump will lose a portion of the GOP base. Those who don't drop Trump will lose votes from independents. Those who drop Trump and survive will be primaried by the same batshit-crazy people who brought you Trump. If they survive that, their next general election campaign will chain them to the rotting corpse of the Trump candidacy.

And Paul Ryan's speakership will end in January. If the Republicans hold the House, he won't have enough votes to survive.

Pass the popcorn.

What Would You Call a Grown Man Who Deliberately Walks into a Room Where Teenaged Girls are in a State of Undress?

I believe that the proper term is "Pervert".
Four women who competed in the 1997 Miss Teen USA beauty pageant said Donald Trump walked into the dressing room while contestants — some as young as 15 — were changing.

“I remember putting on my dress really quick because I was like, ‘Oh my god, there’s a man in here,’” said Mariah Billado, the former Miss Vermont Teen USA.

Trump, she recalled, said something like, “Don’t worry, ladies, I’ve seen it all before.”

Three other women, who asked to remain anonymous for fear of getting engulfed in a media firestorm, also remembered Trump entering the dressing room while girls were changing. Two of them said the girls rushed to cover their bodies, with one calling it “shocking” and “creepy.” The third said she was clothed and introduced herself to Trump.
It's creepy enough that The Donald walked unannounced into the dressing room for adult contestants, but doing that to children? There are places where doing that could get a man arrested and designated as a sex offender.

What you'll now hear from is the Loyal Defenders of The Donald, who will explain that it was No Big Deal™. But if Bill Clinton had done it, those very same people would be calling for his head on a pike.

Because It's OK If You're a Republican. Or rich as fuck.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Heads are Exploding Across the Political Spectrum

That's Glenn Back and he's endorsing Hillary Clinton. Yes, it's pretty much a backhanded one, but he's still endorsing her.

I don't follow Beck. But I'll say that it's a pretty good bet that he's been one who has been lambasting Clinton for many, many years.

And now he's going to vote for her.

Fucking wow, man.

Pass the Popcorn, Arizona Ed.

U.S. prosecutors said on Tuesday they will seek a criminal contempt charge against Maricopa County, Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio, known for his tough stance on illegal immigration, for violating a court order in a 2007 racial profiling case.
Arpaio has acted with Nixonian-grade contempt for the rule of law. Hopefully, the wheels of justice will grind away on his ass.

Pass the Popcorn; The Donald Ed.

Donald Trump stepped up his fierce attacks on his own party leaders Tuesday, promising to teach Republicans who oppose him a lesson and fight for the presidency "the way I want to."
Meanwhile, bet that the professional GOP party workers, the ones who run get-out-the-vote campaigns, are going to quietly drop their tools and walk away.

Talk about a high-stakes gamble, with nobody to buy into his operation and bail him out.

Breaking the Chains of Political Exploitation

The Republican party has long exploited the Christian evangelical movement, tossing them a bone from time to time with bullshit such as banning the sale of soft port on military bases.

However, the evangelicals' support of Donald Trump isn't sitting too well with the women of the movement. And now prominent women are speaking out.

Monday, October 10, 2016

No Comment Required

Like Nobody Saw This Coming

NBC on Sunday suspended "Today" show personality Billy Bush indefinitely after he was caught on a videotape from 2005 in a crude conversation about women with Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.

"Today" Executive Producer Noah Oppenheim said in a memo Sunday that "there is simply no excuse for Billy's language and behavior on that tape." Bush, who hosts the third hour of the "Today" show, has been suspended "pending further review of the matter," Oppenheim said.
A cynical person would suggest that the duration of Bush's suspension will depend on who wins on Nov. 8th.

NBC had, for a time, members of both the Bush and Clinton families on their payroll. You can speculate amongst yourselves as to why they'd do that.

As for the debate itself, it's been less than 24 hours and the Trump campaign is in "what Donald meant to say is..." mode.

Geraldo Rivera has found more embarrassing Trump tapes, presumably in Al Capone's vault.

Profiles in Political Cowardice; Paul Ryan Edition

House Speaker Paul Ryan told fellow Republicans Monday he will no longer defend GOP nominee Donald Trump and will instead use the next 29 days to focus on preserving his party's hold on Congress.
The Waffling Wisconsin Weasel won't be bothered to take a stand. He'll try to cleave to the middle of the GOP road.

But there is no middle in this election. The GOP base will view this as yet another backstabbing from a Washington insider. Those opposed to Trump will see it as an act of political triangulation, which, in this instance, translates to "political cowardice".

For or against, Paul. Those are the choices.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Even if Trump Goes Away, the Conditions that Fertilized His Campaign Have Not

Thirteen million people voted for Donald Trump and he won the nomination.

Twelve million people voted for Bernie Sanders. While more voted for Clinton, many of those votes were cast after it was all over for Sanders, and many more were cast in states that haven't voted Democratic since the two parties traded stances on civil rights.

The party elites in the Democratic party pushed Clinton and, between machinations and super delegates, had a large part in crushing the Sanders's campaign. The party elites in the Republican party may yet succeed in pushing Trump out of the race.

But the anger of tens of million of voters, the conviction shared by all of them that the system is rigged and that the parties care nothing about them, will not go away.

Trump Can't and Won't Quit

There are five good reasons why Donald Trump should not quit the race.

The first is technical. Most states use paper ballots, either they are counted by hand or fed into scanners. Those ballots have been printed. All states uses paper ballots for absentee voting. Absentee ballots are already being distributed (and have been for weeks).

The second is a matter of electoral fairness. For both absentee voters and voters in states that allow early voting, the election is, in fact, under way. They've made their choices based on who is on the ballot. It would be an unprecedented bait-and-switch for Trump to drop out.

The third is notice to the voters of who are the candidates. If Trump drops out, then another vice-presidential candidate would have to be chosen. There is no mechanism for that, and likely, the choice wouldn't be made until after the election. The voters have the right to evaluate the candidates and make their choices; Trump dropping out would say to the voters "trust us, we're going to pick a decent man."

And trust whom, exactly? The Republican party elites? Their views were soundly rejected by the party's voters in the primary contest. If the opinions of the party elites mattered to the GOP base, the number of Trump voters would've not filled up a short bus.

Which brings me to reason #4: Trump received over 13 million votes in the primaries, which were the most ever for a GOP candidate.

The "will of the people" is one of those concepts that politicians speak of in glowing terms and then disregard at the drop of a hat. Trump's flaws were well-known to anyone who had bothered to look and yet, the GOP voters chose him. They turned their collective backs on the party elites and the professional pols and chose Trump, a completely untested amateur, as their guy. You can bet that most of those voters will look on a Trump resignation as his having been pushed out by the party, a penultimate backstabbing by the pros.

And then to tell those thirteen million Trump voters that they're supposed to turn out for a clown that wasn't even running in the primaries? Good luck with that.

The last is Donald Trump. While he might be able to accept being defeated as either evidence that he couldn't close the deal or console himself with conspiracy theories about how Hillary Clinton conned the voters or whatnot, there's no such consolation to be had should he drop out. Dropping out is Donald Trump having to acknowledge that he's a loser. He would have to essentially fire himself. He would be a self-admitted failure. That would be a reversal of his entire personality.

Besides, all you have to do is look at the Right's reaction, which is "Bill Clinton was worse". Expect to hear a lot of that from The Donald.

Your Sunday Morning Jet Noise

First flight of a restored F-104:

Saturday, October 8, 2016

What the Right Willingly Overlooks in Their Defense of Trump the Sexual Predator

Their defense consists of "Bill Clinton was worse". And The Donald says that he'll make an issue of Bill Clinton's infidelities.

Point one: Bill Clinton isn't running for anything. That this has to even be pointed out shows the depth of the Right's infection by Clinton Derangement Syndrome.

Point two: Trump has no ground to stand on. He has cheated on all of his wives. He cheated on wife #1, Ivana, with Marla Maples. He then divorced Ivana, married Marla, and then cheated on her with Melania Knauss. He then married Melania and has since cheated on her.

And who are Trump's advisors: Newt Gingrich, who has been married three times and cheated on his second wife with the woman who he later married. Rudy Giuliani has, like Trump and Gingrich, been married three times and cheated on his second with with the woman who became Mrs. Giuliani the Third.

Maybe you can detect a pattern.

When it comes to the moral highground of marriage and fidelity, Trump, Giuliani and Gingrich are yelling from the lowest sub-basement that there is.

But none of this matters to the poor sufferers of Clinton Derangement Syndrome.

Wikileaks and the Russians

The U.S. government for the first time on Friday formally accused Russia of a campaign of cyber attacks against Democratic Party organizations ahead of the Nov. 8 presidential election.

"We believe, based on the scope and sensitivity of these efforts, that only Russia's senior-most officials could have authorized these activities," a U.S. government statement said on Friday about hacking of political groups.

"These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the U.S. election process."
As far as the "cui bono" question, I'll set that aside, because the answer is rather plain.

No doubt that Wikileaks will soon start releasing stuff that they got from the Russians. A wise person will put no stock in any of it.

The Russians have
a decades-long record of document forgery. They've forged emails. There was a story, a long time ago, that an American reporter in Europe found an envelope in his car; the envelope contained documents that were damning to Zbigniew Brzezinski, then the National Security Advisor. The newspaper vetted the documents carefully and concluded that they were forged.

Whatever Wikileaks releases to try and sway the election should be regarded as Russian forgeries until proven otherwise.


Sunday morning, I played the feather game with Chip. After a bit, I put it back up on top of the refrigerator.

A little later, while I was having coffee and reading the paper, I heard a suspicious noise from the kitchen. I put down both the coffee mug and the paper and, as I stood up, Chip came proudly out of the kitchen, carrying the feather toy in his mouth, with the pole trailing behind him.

He then flopped down on the carpet and proceeded to beat the hell out of the toy.

I now keep it in a closet.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Latest Trump Revelation: Is Anyone Surprised That He's a Fucking Pig?

Donald Trump bragged in vulgar terms about kissing, groping and trying to have sex with women during a 2005 conversation caught on a hot microphone, saying that “when you’re a star, they let you do it,” according to a video obtained by The Washington Post.
Trump is a pig and he cheated on every one of his wives. The man would fuck a gator if he could get his aides to hold down the tail (and keep their mouths shut). He's the closest thing to an unarrested sexual predator that anyone is likely to find.

But is this really a surprise to anyone?

Well, so much for "the party of moral values" and "restoring decency".

Another Non-Apology Apology, or
"You're Surprised that Fox News is Staffed with Racist Jackholes?"

After a blatantly racist piece on (wait for it) Fox News, their Racist du Jour, Jesse Watters, "apologized":
Watters said he is a political humorist, tweeting Wednesday, "My man-on-the-street interviews are meant to be taken as tongue-in-cheek and I regret if anyone found offense."
Fox News, though, thinks it was funny, and here's a screenshot in case they scrub it:

There's a considerable difference between not being "politically correct" and bing a racist asshole;

Fucking douchebags.

The Internet of Shit

Smart devices in your home are being used by hackers for DDoS attacks:
Devices in people’s homes and offices that are connected to the Internet — things such as routers and cameras, rice makers and thermostats — could increasingly be taken over by hackers in the coming weeks and used to commit crimes or even paralyze businesses and government institutions.
If you wouldn't leave your front door open, then why would you leave the cyber-equivalent of your front door open?

(And really, folks, do you really need an internet-enabled crockpot or a coffee-maker?)

Because It's Friday

Aussie steam, going uphill:

No Comment Required

And feel free to steal.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Trump Supporters-- Hurricane Deniers?

This is too rich: Apparently, the Usual Gang of Idiots thinks that Hurricane Matthew is some sort of Obama/Commie plot.

What they all should do is go buy an anemometer at a big-box sporting goods store and then take their fair asses to the east coast of Florida and George. They should stand on the shore, measure the winds, and let us know if it was really all that bad. Maybe Oxy-Boy will ferry them in with his Gulfstream-V.

Is Patience for Bad Cops Wearing Thin?

A former Pine Lawn [Missouri] police lieutenant described by prosecutors as a “loose cannon” and a judge as a “disgrace” was sentenced Thursday to 51 months in federal prison.

U.S. District Judge Stephen N. Limbaugh Jr. said the evidence was overwhelming that Steven Blakeney, 36, had “trumped up” evidence and engaged two store owners in conspiring to falsely arrest and jail a Pine Lawn mayoral candidate, Nakisha Ford, on behalf of her rival on Easter night in 2013.
4-1/2 years in the Federal pen, even in a "Club Fed", isn't beanbag.

I Say: "Hanging is Too Good for Them!"

Police in India have arrested 70 people on suspicion of posing as IRS agents to steal cash from U.S. citizens.

Authorities in the western Indian city of Thane said they were investigating another 630 people suspected of being involved in the extortion scam.
And these guys, as well:
Treasury Department investigators have filed criminal complaints against five individuals in three states, accusing them of fleecing nearly $2 million from more than 1,500 victims as part of a scheme to impersonate IRS agents.

Not a Sinking, but Definately a "Mission Kill"

The Swift didn't sink, but she was definitely fucked up:

If you look at the next photo, there are holes in the central hull that appear to have been made from the outside. I don't know if they are impact holes from weapons fire, or holes for waste discharge systems. I tend to suspect the latter, as if the ship had taken small-arms fire, I would have expected to see similar hulls in the side hulls.

The video of the attack may have been doctored. It appears to show the launching of a pretty large weapon, as you can see what appears to be the booster separate. But the damage to the ship may be suggestive of the ship being hit with antitank rockets that triggered secondaries from the cargo. The Iranian Noor/Qader ASCM has a warhead of about 500lbs-- a 500lb warhead detonating inside an aluminum-hulled ship of that size likely would have blown the living shit out of it.

Or, possibly, the warhead didn't detonate and only the fuel did. That's not unknown with such weapons, i.e., the HMS Sheffield and the USS Stark.

Florida: Hatches; Batten; Down

The latest forecast from the National Hurricane Center shows Hurricane Matthew going right by Florida, up to Charleston, SC, and then executing a hard right turn to take aim at Florida for a second run.

Hurricanes can be bad news, but being hit twice by the same storm would seriously suck.

Meanwhile, Hurricane Nicole is futzing around further to the east, and it may wind up smacking Bermuda.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Dear Yahoo: Fuck You.

Yahoo Inc last year secretly built a custom software program to search all of its customers' incoming emails for specific information provided by U.S. intelligence officials, according to people familiar with the matter.

The company complied with a classified U.S. government demand, scanning hundreds of millions of Yahoo Mail accounts at the behest of the National Security Agency or FBI, said three former employees and a fourth person apprised of the events.
They didn't just comply with one of those bullshit sooper-seekrit subpoenas that the rubber-stamp FISA court says is legal. Oh, no. They built software to help the spooks search Yahoo emails.

Which would be like your landlord not only letting the cops into your apartment for a little game of sneak-and-peek, but hiring a working crew to help the cops search.

The only good thing I can say about this is that Yahoo isn't hiding the story. Which is a little bit surprising.

Full disclosure: I have a Yahoo mail account. I only use it for signing up for online contests and other such bullshit that's guaranteed to generate tons of spam.

Yahoo sucks. In the late `90s, when they were the search engine, they annoyed the shit out of everyone by loading up search results with sponsored links. Their pages were clunky and slow to load, which was a big deal in a time when most people were using dial-up modems at 56K or slower. Google came along and very quickly ate Yahoo's lunch.

If you have a Yahoo account that you use for any reason other than spam-catching, you should change to another provider-- at least one that is not so eager to help the spooks spy on you.

But the sad reality is that nobody really gives a fuck. Of all the years that I've had PGP installed, only one email correspondent engages in encrypted communications with me. I have the Signal app on my phone-- nobody else I know uses it.

So as much as people cavail about DasGov reading their personal shit, they won't take a few simple steps to prevent them from doing it. Yes, it's illegal for a burglar to walk through your front door and take your shit. But you shouldn't be leaving your front door open, let alone unlocked.

Don't make it easy for the criminals to take your shit (and yes, I regard the spooks as being no better than criminals).

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

No Comment Required; Trump Ed.

What Happens When People Don't Trust the Police?

They don't call the police.
Overall, the researchers believe that “the police beating of Frank Jude resulted in a net loss of approximately 22,200 911 calls reporting crime the year after Jude’s story broke,” and that’s during a span in which there were about 110,000 911 calls to the police total. And while black people are 40 percent of the population in Milwaukee, “Over half (56 percent) of the total loss in calls occurred in black neighborhoods.” There was no such drop for calls reporting automobile accidents, further supporting the researchers’ theory that the effect had to do specifically with crime reports. Eventually the overall number of calls returned to where it was “supposed” to be.
None of this should be a surprise to anyone. If you think that the cops are acting as an occupying army in your neighborhood, you're not going to call them.

The referenced beating was yet another case where the local prosecutors dragged their feet and, when they eventually brought the eight cops involved to trial, all were acquitted by (wait for it) all-white juries.

The Bush Administration DoJ had better luck. Four pleaded guilty, receiving sentences of between 12 to 32 months. at trial, one cop got off, the others were found guilty and sentenced to between 15 and 17 years in prison. All appealed and one got to be resentenced (and was resentenced to the same term).


No More Bosun's Mates

The Navy is abolishing ratings and getting rid of "man" in titles. So there will be no more "yeoman" or "seaman", just, oh, I don't know, "Uniformed Pussy Third Class"?

I predict that this change will last about as long as the abolition of the crackerjack uniform or the adoption of aquaflage.

Traditions matter. Those who got upset that the term "man" was in the names of ratings titles should probably have opted to gotten a job at some place a little better suited for their sensibilities.

Secretary of the Navy Mabus ought to be run out of D.C. on a fucking rail, but only after the traditionally-required tarring and feathering. That decision is basically a reprehensible mixture of extreme political correctness and stupidity and should be reversed.

UPDATE: That didn't take long:

Who knew that Hitler was a scope-monkey?

Cat Tools

This is the handle for a Swiffer pad:

When extended, and with the working end at an angle, it is just the thing for retrieving cat toys from under furniture and appliances.