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

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Forgery Failure, Probably, or
Buffoon-in-Chief At Work

Apparently the "Covfefe file" was empty:
President* Donald Trump on Thursday said he did not make nor does he have any “tapes” or recordings of his conversations with former FBI Director James Comey, despite having previously teased at the idea that they did exist.

“With all of the recently reported electronic surveillance, intercepts, unmasking and illegal leaking of information, I have no idea whether there are ‘tapes’ or recordings of my conversations with James Comey, but I did not make, and do not have, any such recordings,” Trump wrote in a pair of tweets on Thursday afternoon.
My completely unsupported guess is that there were recordings that were falsified by Trump's people (or his sympathizers), but then cooler heads pointed out that manufacturing evidence in the midst of a number of Federal investigations would be a sure ticket to the Big House.

Cosby

In an exclusive interview with ABC News, a juror in the Bill Cosby sexual assault case said that after dozens of hours of grueling deliberations in a tiny room, 10 of the 12 jurors agreed he was guilty on two counts. On a third count, only one of the jurors believed he was guilty.

The final, intractable votes on the first of the three counts was 10 to two to find Cosby guilty of digitally penetrating accuser Andrea Constand without her consent, the juror said. On the second count, that she was unconscious or unaware during the incident, the juror said the vote was 11 to one to acquit. On the third count, that the alleged assault occurred after Cosby gave Constand drugs or intoxicants without her knowledge, substantially impairing her for the purpose of preventing her resistance, the jury was deadlocked at 10 to two, in favor of a guilty verdict, according to the juror.
Of course it'll be up to the prosecutor, but with a 10-2 split for conviction on two counts, I imagine that they'll retry the case.

Mibsters

Yes, that's a word.
Allegheny County [PA] is guaranteed to have at least one national marbles champion as two local girls are facing off in today's finals at the tournament in Wildwood, N.J.

Also, a Pittsburgh teen is in the boys final.

Mibsters Sierra Ricci, 12, of Shaler and Lauren Shutey, 13, of the South Side Flats, will play in the girls final.

In the boys division, Eli Murphy, 14, of Squirrel Hill, will compete against an opponent from Michigan.

If Murphy wins, the county will dual boys and girls champions, which also happened in 2008 and 2011. The Pittsburgh area has long been a powerhouse in the National Marbles Tournament, now in its 95th year.
Advance word is that Eli Murphy did win, in a nail-biting comeback. Apparently the first to win 8 games takes the crown. Murphy was down 1-7 and then won seven straight.

Update: Yepper! Good work, kids!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Monday, June 19, 2017

Brexit- Looking Ominous for the Brits

British negotiators have capitulated to key European demands for a phased approach to Brexit talks, agreeing to park discussions on free trade until they have thrashed out the cost of the multibillion-euro UK divorce settlement.

Putting a brave face on a concession that may further strengthen the tactical dominance of the EU, the Brexit secretary, David Davis, insisted his initial retreat remained consistent with long-term government strategy. “It’s not how it starts, it’s how it finishes that matters,” Davis said in Brussels after their first day of formal talks. “Nothing is agreed until everything is agreed.”
Right. The EU is signaling that they are going to play hardball. Toljaso.

The problem for the Brits is that they don't have a lot of leverage that would seem to be apparent. PM May called snap elections in a bid to strengthen her hand, but it had the opposite effect. She's leading a coalition, now, which may have the lifespan of an Italian one.

If the EU had balls, they'd start building the border control checkpoints right now of a kind that would make Trump green with envy..

Dear CBS: Go Fuck Yourself

The wait for Star Trek: Discovery is almost over. After two premiere date delays and a showrunner switch, the hotly-anticipated revival is finally launching on September 24 at 8:30 p.m. on CBS, and it can't come soon enough.

After the show's broadcast debut, the second episode of Discovery will be available immediately on CBS All Access, the network's digital subscription live streaming service, which will be the exclusive home of the series for the rest of its run.
I'm hoping that its run is short and has few viewers.

"CBS All Access"-- what a fucking laugh. The "B" stands for "Broadcast", not "subscription". If they wanted to set up a pay channel, they could at least had the guts to call it something else entirely, like "The Greedy Fuckers Channel (where you're stupid enough to pay for mediocre programming)".

Conway Lies as Effortlessly as She Breathes

When President* Donald Trump wrote online last week that “I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director,” it was not an admission that he is indeed being investigated, counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway said Monday morning, but instead a Twitter-shortened reaction to media coverage of ongoing probes into his 2016 campaign.

Conway’s insistence Monday morning that Trump’s tweet last Friday was not what it seemed followed in the footsteps of the president’s personal attorney, Jay Sekulow, who said Sunday in an array of political talk show appearances that regardless of what he has written online, Trump is not under investigation.
Yeah, sure.


Conway said that Trump was indulging in irony. Right. Trump wouldn't know irony if he was hit in the face with it.

The best thing that Conway could do for Trump is to somehow lock him out of Twitter before he incriminates himself into an impeachment trial (and then into prison).

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Stephen Furst, RIP

He was 63.

Most of the obits probably are leading with his role as "Flounder" in Animal House. But I prefer to remember him as Vir Cotto in Babylon V:






Your Sunday Morning Jet Noise

USAF E-8C:


The airplane is a 707 airframe. Unlike the modded KC-135s, this airplane has low-bypass turbofans. They were likely among the last 707-airframes made before Boeing completely shut the line down in 1991

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Collision at Sea

Seven US sailors are missing and the commanding officer of a US destroyer is among the injured after the warship collided with a merchant ship off the coast of Japan, the US Navy said.

The guided-missile destroyer USS Fitzgerald suffered severe damage to its starboard side.

"The collision affected Fitzgerald's forward starboard side above and below the water line, causing significant damage and associated flooding to two berthing spaces, a machinery space, and the radio room," according to a statement from US 7th Fleet.
I'll predict that the captain of the tin can's going to take the fall for this. Which, to be blunt, comes with the job.

Colliding with the impact on the starboard side isn't a good sign.

Trump's Story Keeps Changing

President* Donald Trump acknowledged for the first time Friday that he is under federal investigation as part of the expanding probe into Russia's election meddling. He lashed out at a top Justice Department official overseeing the inquiry, reflecting his mounting frustration with the unrelenting controversy that has consumed his early presidency.

"I am being investigated for firing the FBI Director by the man who told me to fire the FBI Director! Witch Hunt," the president wrote on Twitter.
Trump wasn't told to fire Comey. First off, as anyone who has paid even a smidgen of attention to Trump's career trajectory knows, nobody can tell Trump anything. He does what he wants and, like a petulant seven-year old, other people clean up the resultant mess.

Second, this is what Trump said a month ago:
President Donald Trump said Thursday [05/11/17] that he had already decided to fire ousted FBI Director James Comey before Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein wrote up a formal recommendation to do so.

"I was going to fire Comey," Trump told NBC News' Lester Holt in an interview. "Regardless of the recommendation I was going to fire Comey."

The White House initially said Rosenstein's memorandum to Attorney General Jeff Sessions prompted Trump to fire Comey, but Trump contradicted that account, saying he had already planned to do so and requested a memo to back up his decision.
So, was Trump lying then or is he lying now?

Caturday

A stray/feral cat is sleeping:


They're trying to nab or trap it, as the cat appears to be in not good shape. But this isn't around my area, so I don't know if they did.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Because It's Friday

The engine room of the SS Jeremiah O'Brien, one of the few remaining Liberty ships..

Fuck It, I'm Gonna Drive

TSA is conducting a proof of concept demonstration to evaluate the operational and security impact of using biometrics to verify passengers’ identities using their fingerprints. The biometric authentication technology enables a traveler’s fingerprints to serve as both a boarding pass and identity document.
The TSA says that this only applies to their pre-check program, t least for this proof-of-concept test.

But, with all due respect, anyone who believes that it will stop there is smoking crack.

The day is coming, Gentle Reader, when you will be strongly encouraged to go somewhere and submit to a fingerprint check, a retinal scan and a facial scan before an airline flight. After that, then everyone who does those things will go through a lesser-intrusive form of screening, similar to what they do now for the pre-check people.

Those who don't will automatically be subject to the sort of enhanced security screening that will be the next best thing to a colonoscopy.

That will last until some self-radicalized lunatic goes through the higher security screening and then does something stupid.

Pence is Smarter Than Trump

Vice President Mike Pence has hired outside legal counsel to help with both congressional committee inquiries and the special counsel investigation into possible collusion between President Donald Trump’s campaign and Russia.

The vice president’s office said Thursday that Pence has retained Richard Cullen, a Richmond, Virginia-based lawyer and chairman of McGuire Woods who previously served as a U.S. attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia.
Pence hired a criminal defense guy who has significant experience in federal criminal cases. Trump's going with a civil litigator.

Also, Pence is keeping his yap shut.