Tuesday, September 30, 2008

More on the bailout $700 billion business welfare plan

In my housing post, I spoke of how the bailout is simply going to delay the necessary correction in the markets and how delaying a correction simply prolongs the pain during the correction. Here's two good posts that explain better than I could why I think the bailout is such a bad idea. From the one over at The Liberty Papers:

As I noted on Monday, the bailout bill would not solve any of the problems that we’re facing today, it would not eliminate the pain that will be felt thanks to years of easy credit and easy money policies by the Federal Reserve Board, Congress, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the rest of the banking industry. All the bailout will accomplish is to spread that pain throughout the economy and delay into some unknown point in the future the day of reckoning that must come for the mistakes that have been made. If the bailout happens, it may mean that the rest of this year, and the next several years will be better than they might have other wise —- but it will also mean that the dollar will continue to fall in value, inflation will increase, federal spending will go up even more than it already has, and the budget deficit and national debt will continue to soar. Someone will pay the price for that, and if the Federal Government takes ownership of the mortgage debacle, that someone will be the American taxpayer.

I honestly don’t think many people are thinking that far into the future, though. The markets are operating based on an insane combination of hope and fear, and the politicians are being guided by the same psychology into passing a bill not because they think it might work, but because they hope it will.

That, my friends, is a recipe for disaster.

What he said. The bailout has solidified my vote of "None of the above" in the presidential race this time around. I've been debating over the past few weeks whether or not I could stomach a vote for McCain. His posturing over and support of the bailout sealed the deal. There's no way I can in good conscience support a politician who thinks this is a good idea; I think this is that big of a deal.

Oh, and that principled stand so many in the House took against the bill? Apparently their threshold for giving government money to failed industries lies somewhere between $25 billion and $700 billion. Money quote from the article:

Japanese automakers Toyota Motor Corp and Honda Motor Co could be eligible for the low-cost federal funding but have said they have no intention of applying for the loans.

Anyone have any idea why that might be? God forbid that we actually REWARD companies for being successful instead of simply leveling the playing field when incompetent companies fail.

Guns in the hands of good people

I've been meaning to post this for a while but just hadn't gotten around to doing it.

June 28, 2008, was a defining moment in my life. It was the day I shot and killed a man in the defense of my life and the lives of others. We all have defining moments. They might not be as tragic as taking another man's life, but they are events that change the way we look at things -- or even, perhaps, how we live our lives.

Before that muggy Saturday evening in June, I would have said my defining moments were many: graduating from high school; enlisting in the Army; getting married; having children; getting run over by a tow truck; and especially, meeting my fiancée, Maria. All of these events, and more, have happened in my life and changed me.

If you are considering taking the step of arming yourself for self defense or you already carry for self defense, this is a must read. Carrying a firearm is not something to be taken lightly; the decision to use that firearm is an even more serious one. If you aren't willing to take the responsibility, then don't do it. If you're doing it to feel cool, or to use as a security blanket, don't do it. If, however, you are willing to acknowledge and assume the immense responsibility, then strap on a holster and join the ranks of Americans who are able and willing to protect themselves and others.

Best. Headline. Ever.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Chuckle of the day

The facebook status of an acquaintance: _________ is A HOME OWNER!!

Uh, not sure I would be quite so happy about that...setting aside the fact that the housing market is self destructing as we speak (along with half of the other markets in this country), a house is a really poor "investment" even in the best of situations, post 2000 distorted market notwithstanding. Thanks to our federal government's totally awesome home ownership for all plan that has distorted the market so far that it is almost completely disconnected from reality, we do not live in anything close to the best possible situation. I fully plan on avoiding home ownership as long as possible.

A tangential but relevant point to note...the bailout plan is nothing more than a further distortion of the markets, writ large. If you want to see what's happening to the housing market happen to the economy as a whole, by all means, support the bailout. Corrections are a necessary and vital part of a free market economy. The further you put them off, the more severe they are.

Anyone who supports the bailout won't be getting my vote in Nov. Guess I'm going to be writing in a lot of "none of the above."

In a related Irony of the day, today is Mises birthday.

South Park Monday

Inspired by the best. custom license plate. ever. that I saw Sunday night...MANBRPG. The driver looked super serial; all he needed was an "EXCELSIOR!" bumper sticker and he'd be set.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

What was on this weekend

All on TCM, so all letterboxed and uncut. Too bad I didn't have time to watch any of them all the way through. Caught the last half hour of Kelly's Heroes, first 45 minutes of Where Eagles Dare, and the middle hour of Breaker Morant.

This was on TCM too...

Not so much notable for being a great movie (although it is entertaining); this one is notable because I literally saw 10 seconds of it and said, "Holy shit...is this The Parent Trap?" That might be a good sign that you watch a few too many movies.

Saturday, September 27, 2008


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Mid-Week Rock

More Dos Gringos...it just seemed appropriate (more here).

Monday, September 22, 2008

South Park Monday

Given the wild swings (most of which is purely speculation based) that the market has taken to and from stocks and commodities over the past few weeks, there's only one clip that's appropriate to put up:

Friday, September 19, 2008

Never Forget

Today my Det. will be running the 33 miles from the Iowa Statehouse to the ISU campus. Along the way we'll be carrying the American flag, the POW/MIA flag, and a proclamation from the Governor of Iowa recognizing today as the day we remember POWs and those still MIA. We're running to remember those who endured horrific conditions while in captivity, those who are still out there, and those who work to bring them home.

Happy Bday

I've been horribly remiss in my duties...happy birthday, USAF!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

And the hits just keep on coming

You just had to know this was coming:
NEW YORK - New York's attorney general says he's launching an investigation into whether some traders used illegal tactics to drive down the stock price of several Wall Street firms.

Attorney General Andrew Cuomo told reporters Thursday his office has received a "significant number" of complaints about short sellers, or investors who hope to profit by placing bets that a company's stock will fall.

Short-selling is not illegal. But Cuomo says he will focus on whether short sellers engaged in conspiracy or spread bad information to influence the stock prices of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., American International Group Inc. and other firms that have been hammered in the ongoing financial crisis.

As the article states, short selling isn't illegal. But you can rest assured that since there are political points to be made by punishing the people "responsible" for this economic meltdown, they WILL find conspiracy. Whether or not the conspiracy actually exists is irrelevant. The one rule of being a state AG (especially in NY) is to never miss an opportunity to abuse your office's power through pandering in an attempt to gain higher office.

Where's an escort or two when you need one?

Constitution Day

Albeit a day late:

What’s the most important day in American history? Most of us would answer the Fourth of July. But think about today, Sept. 17.

For on this date in 1787, the convention in Philadelphia completed work on one of the greatest acts of creative leadership of all time, “this Constitution of The United States.” The framers rescued America from what James Madison later described as “so gloomy a chaos” and set the world marching toward what we can now see as the Age of Democracy.

Yet there will be no parades today, no picnics or fireworks. Perhaps a library somewhere is sponsoring a talk, but Constitution Day will pass largely unnoticed. Americans have, over the past 40 years, drifted away from a connection to our Constitution, the document that invented the United States as we now understand it and helped it to become the longest enduring democracy in history.

Given that this is what they signed, what the hell has happened? Saying that over the past 40 years we have "drifted away" from a "connection" to the Constitution is putting it mildly. I'd say that over the past 75 years we've more or less completely ignored it. If you can't do the math, my count starts at drastic measures taken by a closet fascist and would be dictator in times of great economic strain...largely caused and exacerbated by the government. No parallels to today, none at all. As an aside, I've always wondered what would've happened if FDR had finished out his unprecedented FOURTH (forget about the third) term. Would he have run again? Would the American people have accepted a dictator in spirit, if not name?

Sorry to shift gears, but the hero worship of FDR is something that has always pissed me off. The only reason the United States did not turn into a full blown fascist authoritarian state during his Presidency is that there were (barely) enough people willing to stand up against him and that, more importantly, our forefathers entrusted us with an incredible governing document. However, how sad is it that instead of being able to celebrate the amazing and previously unheard of liberty encompassed in our founding document I am forced to console myself with the fact that it was (barely) able to prevent our nation from turning into the very thing we had rebelled against?

For the record, I endorse the idea in the comments over at Doug's place to replace Labor Day with Constitution Day.

Fun fact o' the day

In Animal House, during the parade scene at the end, Neidermeyer carries a M1917 rifle. I always assumed it was a 1903 Springfield.


If you aren't awarded the MOH for jumping on a grenade, what can it possibly be awarded for?
SAN DIEGO - A Marine sergeant singled out by President Bush for throwing his body on a grenade to save his comrades in Iraq will receive the prestigious Navy Cross rather than the nation's highest military award, military officials said.


"I don't understand why if the president has been talking about him," his mother, Rosa Peralta, told the newspaper, which was the first to report the bestowing of the Navy Cross.

Rosa Peralta said she was informed during a meeting with Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Richard Natonski that a committee could not agree on awarding the Medal of Honor to her son, who Marine Corps officials say was first wounded by friendly fire. She said the general mentioned the friendly fire aspect as part of her son's death during the discussion.


According to a report by a Marine combat photographer who witnessed the act, Peralta lay wounded on the floor of a house and grabbed a grenade that had been lobbed by an insurgent. He absorbed the blast with his body, dying instantly.

In 2005, Natonski, then-commanding general of the 1st Marine Division, ordered an investigation to determine the source of a bullet fragment recovered from Peralta's body.

"Following multiple and exhaustive reviews, the evidence supports the finding that Peralta was likely hit by 'friendly fire,'" the Marine Corps said Wednesday in a press release. "This finding had no bearing on the decision to award the Navy Cross medal."

Something does not compute. The mother says that Gen. Natonski mentioned the friendly fire aspect of Sgt. Peralta's death, yet the Corps says that it had no bearing in the decision. Given the precedent set, this decision is really surprising. I really can't help but think that there was some bureaucratic maneuvering WRT the friendly fire aspect of the incident. If that's the case, it's too bad. This would be true in any war, but it's particularly galling in a conflict where there has been a distinct lack of recognition of heroes while at the same time a veritable cornucopia of bronze stars and the like awarded to everyone who deploys, even if all they did was keep an eye on the TCNs emptying out the porta shitters.


There's something that is done in AFROTC called a "superman drill." It consists of changing in and out of various uniforms very quickly. Supposedly it's used as a training tool to teach you "sense of urgency" but I've never really understood the point, especially when you drill on it for awhile until you get to where it isn't physically possible to go any faster. Why am I bringing this up now?

Because I was actually able to put it into practice today. Let's just say that waking up at 0700 when you have to be on campus NLT 0730 and you live a good 7-8 minute drive away from campus requires certain "expedited" measures to be taken with the morning routine.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Mid-Week Rock, Bonus Edition

Given the on-going AF Blues storyline, it's just too good to pass up:

Mid-Week Rock

Only one real choice for this week's artist...and only two real choices for the songs. RIP

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Biting Satire

There's few things I enjoy more, and BT hits the x-ring with this one. He might as well have titled the post, "Every Milblog ever written."

And you thought "Heckuva job" Brownie was bad

At least he was only given the opportunity to f**k up once. Jaime Gorelick, on the other hand, constructed the pre-9/11 intel "wall," proceeded to serve on committee investigating 9/11 (including the so-called "wall") without a hint of possible conflict of interest, then headed over to Fannie Mae and not only ran it into the ground through poor leadership by allowing shoddy record keeping but was one of the instigators that thought subprime mortgages were a grand idea.

And now she's helping out with Duke University's case to stay blameless in the Nifong/lacrosse scandal. Pretty much guarantees that the right thing will happen there.

h/t: Lex

Monday, September 15, 2008

The return of SAC?

Looks like it might happen:
The task force recommended assigning a group of bombers to a numbered Air Force that would fall under AFSTRAT and have a sole nuclear mission.


Gates said his key concern remains the Air Force’s “lack of unity of command, and not having one person or organization accountable for the [nuclear] mission.”

Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz and Secretary Michael Donley have had discussions about standing up a new strategic command or placing the nuclear mission under Space Command like the task force recommended, said an Air Force official.

I'd be all for it, as long as we do like Spook 86 says and bring SAC back in name as well as spirit.

Let the indoctrination begin...

From the lesson objectives for today's AS 441 class: "...6. Define Effects Based Operations (EBO)."

Somehow I don't think they got Gen. Mattis to sign off on this one.

From the reading itself (emphasis mine):
Early airpower advocates argued that airpower could be decisive and could achieve strategic effects. While this view of airpower w as not proved during their lifetimes, the more recent history of air and space power application, especially since the 1991 Persian Gulf War, has proven that air and space power can be a dominant and frequently the decisive element of combat in modern warfare. Air and space power is a maneuver element in its own right, co-equal with land and maritime power; as such, it is no longer merely a supporting force to surface combat. As a maneuver element, it can be supported by surface forces in attaining its assigned objectives. Air and space power has changed the way wars are fought and the manner in which the United States pursues peacetime efforts to protect the nation's vital interests.


A vital new part of the new approach to warfare is the emerging arena of effects-based operations (EBO). A further step away from annihilation or attrition warfare, EBO explicitly and logically links the effects of individual tactical actions directly to desired military and political outcomes. By focusing on effects - the full range of outcomes, events, or consequences that result from a specific action - commanders can concentrate on meeting objectives instead of managing target lists. Effects-based actions or operations are those designed to produce distinct, desired effects while avoiding unintended or undesired effects. This new conceptual model requires that Airmen think through the full range of outcomes, choose those that will best achieve objectives, and find ways to mitigate those that will impede achieving them. Air and space power offers many different ways to achieve a given effect; the effort of thinking through actions in this manner should yield commanders and national leaders many options beyond attrition or annihilation. Therefore, adoption of EBO also requires that Airmen advocate air and space power's capabilities in terms of desired effects rather than targets.
Basically, the debate comes down to one thing: do you believe that Desert Storm and Allied Force were a) successful operations and b) the future of warfare? Or do you believe the opposite? Supporters of EBO (and by extension, independent airpower) tend to hold up those two operations as examples of what independent airpower can do. I think it should be fairly obvious which side of the debate I fall on, so let me present what I feel are the major objections to this line of thinking.

Desert Storm was an aberration, the last vestige of the Cold War. The only difference between it and the vaunted confrontation with the Soviets in the Fulda Gap was the change of scenery. I think that to try and make the argument that Desert Storm represents the way forward would be flawed, to say the least. If nothing else, the ease with which U.S. forces rolled over Saddam's military should have provided a stark object lesson to the rest of the world that force on force is NOT the way to fight the U.S. military. On top of all that, holding up Desert Storm as a positive example requires accepting the Weinberger Doctrine and the Powell Corollary as the future path of American military power. I've addressed that in depth here, so suffice to say that I definitely do not agree with that argument. (Ed. note: in the article linked above, I deride the Army for having Clausewitzian type thinking. Since doing more reading on Clausewitz, I've revised that to be more Jominian vice Clausewitzian type thinking. The larger points still stand.) The bottom line is that standing in the corner and pouting that nation-building and other such low intensity warfare are "too hard" and "not what we do" isn't an option, but that following the Weinberger Doctrine/Powell Corollary has (and will continue to) lead the U.S. military down that path.

Allied Force has all of the above objections, with the additional one of being strategically flawed. While this isn't directly related to EBO, one of the strategic flaws was a reluctance to deploy ground troops, instead preferring to operate solely from the air. This policy reduces casualties on our side, but it severely increased the amount of collateral damage. It should be noted that EBO, but its very nature, does the exact same thing. The long held promise by airpower advocates of the ability to strike surgically has finally arrived with the lower yield JDAMs, but pinpoint accuracy doesn't matter if you can't find the target (or if there is no target worth destroying). This was an issue both in Allied Force and the opening "Shock and Awe" phases of OIF.

Airpower has never been, and never will be, able to win wars by itself. It is not, as the bolded section in the first excerpt above states, "a maneuver element in its own right, co-equal with land and maritime power." This isn't ground parochilism or self hatred on my part, this is cold hard fact. In Desert Storm, ground forces were still needed to go in and finish the operation. In Allied Force, airpower achieved the objective set out for it, but these objectives were flawed from a strategic standpoint, and in any case it was still necessary to send peacekeepers in on the ground.

However, what I think the biggest problem I have with EBO is laid out in the bolded section of the second excerpt. It sums up in a single sentence what I think is the biggest problem with Western militaries today. Simply put, it's a belief in the power of technology to lift the fog of war, but it's so much more than that. It's a setting aside of military classics for the latest MBA bullshit bingo AFSO 21 fad of the week. It's training officers to be managers instead of leaders. It's calling people who work in the personnel office "warriors." I know that has digressed considerably from the original focus on EBO, but EBO is the symptom of what I perceive to be a larger problem.

However, I shouldn't sell the text short...it's not all EBO indoctrination. It did include a very good paper on using a football vs. soccer analogy to illustrate how the U.S. military is and how it should consider becoming. While I have a few quibbles with it, it was a damn sight better than the "Museum tells us"-esque section on EBO.

If you haven't had enough reading on EBO, make sure to hit up the SWJ blog posts here and here.

Finally, I should make it clear that my beef is not with the idea of EBO. The anti-EBO is straight up annihilation/attrition, and if there's anything Vietnam has taught us it's that body counts don't work, especially in a COIN environment. Indeed, a attrition slugfest only occurs in the absence of larger strategy. However, any chance of EBO being part of a larger integrated toolkit of theories long ago vanished with the RMA wing of the military's fetish with technology. THAT'S what I have a problem with.

Movie Posters

One area where the Pollacks have us beat. Seriously, these are some pretty cool film posters.


...and the loss thereof. It's tough to maintain faith in a system that results in someone getting off scot free after having an entire career based on a lie. Of course, this isn't the first (or the last) time someone will, due to their rank, get off relatively easy after committing serious crimes. Doesn't make it right.

South Park Monday


It can't hurt 'em that much, right?

Friday, September 12, 2008


Julius Rosenberg guilty of treason:
In 1951, Morton Sobell was tried and convicted with Julius and Ethel Rosenberg on espionage charges. He served more than 18 years in Alcatraz and other federal prisons, traveled to Cuba and Vietnam after his release in 1969 and became an advocate for progressive causes.

Through it all, he maintained his innocence.

But on Thursday, Mr. Sobell, 91, dramatically reversed himself, shedding new light on a case that still fans smoldering political passions. In an interview, he admitted for the first time that he had been a Soviet spy.

And he implicated his fellow defendant Julius Rosenberg, in a conspiracy that delivered to the Soviets classified military and industrial information and what the American government described as the secret to the atomic bomb.

In the interview with The New York Times, Mr. Sobell, who lives in the Riverdale neighborhood of the Bronx, was asked whether, as an electrical engineer, he turned over military secrets to the Soviets during World War II when they were considered allies of the United States and were bearing the brunt of Nazi brutality. Was he, in fact, a spy?

“Yeah, yeah, yeah, call it that,” he replied. “I never thought of it as that in those terms.”

h/t: Below the Beltway

Worth mentioning that this is why showing leniency in the case of spying for a "friendly" nation is a bad idea. Spying is spying, and treason is treason. Unless it's "espionage," which brings me to my other point. I understand the pragmatic reasons for prosecuting people for espionage vice treason, but I find it incredible that someone who compromised information that cost American lives was able to get off with a sentence of 18 years. I find it incredible that someone like Robert Hanssen or Aldrich Ames who did irreparable damage to U.S. intelligence efforts is able to live out the rest of their days in a federal prison. Of course, there's a flip side in that Ethel Rosenberg was probably executed for the crime of being Julius' wife, but that makes it all the more amazing to me that in an open-shut case like Hanssen or Ames they are still able to plea out to life without parole. Like I said, I understand the pragmatic reasons, but it doesn't make it any less unsatisfying.

Personally, I'm old school when it comes to treason...

Stick a fork in AQI

...they're done. Even they admit as much:
BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- Osama bin Laden's top lieutenant has conveyed leaders' dissatisfaction with al Qaeda's operations in Iraq, according to the U.S. military, which says it has uncovered letters authored by the terror outfit's No. 2 man.


Complaints revolve around the group's recruiting efforts, poor communication between al Qaeda central and al Qaeda in Iraq, ineffective and dishonest propaganda techniques, and the growing difficulty in moving "assets" from other countries into Iraq.


"[Al-Zawahiri] was concerned he wasn't getting any regular updates on Iraq. He wasn't getting any regular communication from al-Masri," Perkins said. "He was very dissatisfied with the quality of recruits they were getting to conduct operations in Iraq."

When you can't recruit, can't communicate, can't propagandize, and can't get supplies, as an insurgent group you pretty much fail. The military aspect of the Iraq war is pretty much over and has been for more than a few months. Of course, there are still major political issues to be resolved by the Iraqis that could majorly screw things up if they aren't addressed properly (namely, getting the central government to stop f**king over the SoI Sunnis). Still, seeing that even the AQ higher-ups agree that AQI sucks is a good thing.

h/t: the good LT.

102 Minutes that Changed America

This was definitely the toughest thing I've watched in awhile. Like the NYT review says, if you think you might be in the group that can't handle revisiting that day, this isn't for you. BZ to the History Channel for putting this together and not caving to those that would say that showing explicit video of the attacks is "exploiting the victims" (or whatever the Olber-idiot is saying this week). If you think you can bear to watch it, it's required viewing.

But the key consideration is if you can bear to watch it...watching this was the closest I've felt to the feelings I had that day. If anything, the feelings were more intense because of the up close and personal nature of the videos. There are jumpers...numerous shots of the jumpers, including a few close up. There are shots of Squad 288, that lost 19 men. There are shots of several injuries, included more than a few that looked very serious. There are shots of fatalities. There are shots that convey the sheer terror and helplessness that were felt that day...the one that stands out to me is the reaction of two females after the second plane hit. It was quite possibly the most terrified I have ever heard someone captured on video. There are eerie shots right by the towers of the immediate aftermath of the towers falling. More than a few examples of the thousand yard stare on the faces of first responders after the towers fell.

Bottom line: it was more than worth staying up to watch it and only getting 4 hours of sleep. If you can bear to watch it, it's something that everyone should see at least once.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Mid Week Music

If you haven't read SJS's memories of that day, you're doing yourself a disservice. Ditto for BT's.

Monday, September 08, 2008

South Park Monday

Oh geez, are we gonna start lezzing out?

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Epic Fail

Part I:

Part II:

The Speed Racer music is what does it for me in the second vid.

h/t: Toolmonger for both videos.

Speaking of SAWs

Pretty sure I've posted this before, but it's worth watching again:

Bad. Ass. Mother. Fucker.

Well, either that, or the "special" soldier that every platoon seems to have. I'm not sure which.

Pic of the day

Was browsing wikipedia yesterday and in the process of playing follow the links came across this picture on the page about the AT-4 (make sure to click for high-res):
I'm not sure who I'd rather be: the guys with the AT-4 or the guy above them rockin' and rollin' with the Ma Deuce SAW.

Friday, September 05, 2008

That's Disconcerting

When you google the phrase "michael black papillion NE" the first hit is of a list of sex offenders who live in Papillion.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008


Phone Conversation on the wingroom phone yesterday:

Me: "Air Force ROTC Det. 250 wing room, this is Cadet Black speaking, how may I help you?"

Caller: "Huh? What kinda bullshit...who is this?"

Me: "Uh...Cadet Mike Black..."

Caller: "Eh? I've got a goddamn wrong number!"

Me: "Oh, not a prob-"


This guy seriously sounded like a slightly more gruff version of Grampa Marsh. Definitely one of the more bizarre things to happen to me this week.

How I know the semester hasn't really started yet

The Armory parking lot was completely empty at 0330 this morning. The stinking hippies design students apparently don't have any all night drum circles movie watching sessions projects to be working on yet.

Quote of the Day

Comes from LT Nixon, while assessing the GOP Platform:
America has always been a country of hookers, violence, and people getting hammered, and trying to erase this part of our history just isn't going to happen.
Yup, pretty much.

Mid-Week Rock

Continuing the trend of something a little different, here's a Judas Priest cover. The twist? It's by Hayseed Dixie, a band that specializes in bluegrass covers of heavy rock/metal songs. (Guess where they got their name from...I'll give you a hint, it rhymes with BC/EC). I heard this song last week on KURE (go figure) and recognized the "breakin' the law" hook but sadly couldn't place the song or the artist. I then proceeded to forget the hook for a few days. This bugged me until a few pitchers into Friday night at Welch Ave. Station where I simultaneously remembered the hook, song, and artist. Anyway, here's Hayseed Dixie covering Judas Priest's "Breaking the Law."

Monday, September 01, 2008

Repeat after me

The police aren't the Army:
The Richland County (S.C.) Sheriff's Department has acquired an armored personnel carrier complete with a turret-mounted .50-caliber belt-fed machine gun for its Special Response Team.
h/t: Radley Balko

Seriously? If you wanna shoot a Ma Deuce, your local recruiter will be more than happy to hook you up. Unfortunately though, that will require going up against people a little more intimidating than elderly women.

Really though, like Radley says this is getting ridiculous. .50 BMG is an anti-material round with an energy between 10,000 and 13,000 foot pounds. I can understand its limited use by agencies such as the Coast Guard to immobilize boats and as one of many tools for big city police snipers (NYPD, LAPD, etc.) However, what a police force in a city of 116,000 people needs a belt fed machine gun firing this round for is beyond me.

Warm fuzzies

If you don't get them when looking at these pictures, there's something wrong with you:
Go here and here for more Garands, or if you like diversity, here's some Carbines and .22s (Mossbergs and Kimbers).

All hail the man.

South Park Monday

Given the anniversary and current situation, I figured it would be appropriate: