2nd Amendment to the Constitution of The United States of America

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

"I ask sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians."
- George Mason (father of the Bill of Rights and The Virginia Declaration of Rights)

Sunday, January 18, 2015

American Sniper

Warning!: Spoilers

This is a quick review on the movie American Sniper.  I have not read the book (yet) but I am aware of the Chris Kyle story, as are many who pursue the same hobby and interests as myself. 

Went to see American Sniper yesterday with some friends that I shoot and camp with that are collectively known to ourselves as "The Posse".  Apparently we weren't alone as the movie has grossed over $100 million in just a few days.  Just so you get an idea of our point of view and possible biases viewing this let me break down some of our demographics:

  • All 5 of us are veterans.
  • 4 of us served together at various times in the National Guard. 
  • 3 of us have served at least tour overseas since 9/11, 1 as a DA civilian.
  • 4 of our group have completed Infantry training. 
  • 1 of our group is a veteran of the Ranger Regiment

That being said, we obviously have a pro America bias going into this film.  That's fine.  That is who this movie is made for.  If you are a left wing, anti-war, flag burning, hug-the-enemy-and-he-will-hug-us-back type...simply don't watch this film.  Although my eyes are tinted by red, white and blue, I know enough to see that the events as portrayed in this film are scripted and crafted to present a story from a certain point of view, as are all movies.  If you are a pro-death penalty proponent, don't go see Dead Man Walking....Not a big Notre Dame fan, skip Rudy.  Get the idea?  All of these ass wipes who came out even before the general release of the film condemning it need to go pound sand and ask themselves if that they already knew that they would not like the movie ahead of time, why waste the time to watch it?

Chris Kyle

For those of you that have been living under a rock or on the liberal left, Chris Kyle was a Navy SEAL that was officially credited with 160 confirmed kills. although by his own log the number was much higher but confirmed targets must be correlated by a witness which was not always possible.  That puts him squarely up there with the top of the list of American snipers.  Long story short, he got out of the Navy after the war, went home to Texas and worked as a security consultant and trainer (as many SPECOPS guys are apt to do) and was tragically murdered in Feburary of 2013 at a shooting range along with a friend by a 25 year old Marine that they were taking out to try and help out with supposed PTSD issues.  The trial for that murder has not yet happened. His story might of been a footnote to history save for the fact that he did pen a best selling book, aptly named American Sniper, which generated a defamation lawsuit by former Frogman turned wrestler turned movies star turned DOUCHEBAG Jesse Ventura that continued past Kyle's death and landed in the lap of his widow, and you got a story to grab the attention of any American patriot.

Chris Kyle 

The movie

I think going into this having NOT already read the book cleared me of a lot of bias about what to expect. What resulted was a somewhat mixed reception by myself (the reactions of my cohorts I will save for a bit later as we compared notes) where I understood where director Clint Eastwood was heading with the plot and could tell where elements were thrown in, removed or simplified for the sake of weaving the story, cinematography or simply filling in details.

Bradley Cooper on the set of American Sniper

From the get go the movie grips and pulls the viewer in.  This is in no small part due to the efforts of actor Bradley Cooper (American Hustle, The Hangover 1-3, Wedding Crashers, The A Team) who is totally absorbed in his role.  From physically transforming his body into an impressively solid and commanding physique to his Texan drawl and constant grasp of Kyle's commitment to selfless service he really does make this movie happen for me.

Again the movie pulls you in from the start, commencing with a life or death choice that none of us really want to face before Eastwood snaps us back to some background on Kyle's upbringing and training before resolving the opening shots conflict....defining how the character will be perceived going forward.   The movie attempts to show Kyle as a man who is in conflict with his dedication to his family and to what he believes is a just fight against evil and takes the loss of American lives very personally and is unwillingly thrust into the limelight and attention of other service members due to his skills.  Jokingly referred to as "The Legend" by his SEAL team mates and more respectfully and earnestly by the Marines he protects on overwatch duty from behind his sniper rifle, it seems to be a title and position Kyle is uncomfortable with.   In one scene when Kyle is home between tours he is in a tire store getting service when a Marine comes up and introduces himself a somebody that Kyle personally saved in Fallujah and basically fawns all over him going so far as to tell Kyle's kid that their Daddy was a hero..something about that scene made me uncomfortable and squirm a bit in my seat.

Throughout the movie this entire pull between his duty and his family becomes more polarizing and the rift between him and his wife widens until another decisive event at the end similar to the one that starts the film cues the viewer that Kyle has had enough and snaps him back to his family.  This resolution is somewhat colluded by one last scene where, in Hollywood grandstanding fashion, he has to make one remarkable shot to take care of one last bit of business so he can go home knowing the Marines he overwatched would be "safe" and a no holds barred final battle, in the middle of a Shamal dust storm to boot.

Overall, despite the somber overtones it is a flag waving drama much in the same vane as Lone Survivor was (also about SEALS, as was Zero Dark Thirty...and Act of Valor... and Tears of the Sun... Hollyweird does love the SEALS).  And you know what, I'm totally cool with that.  Maybe what this country needs from time to time is a little flag waving in cinema depicting some of America's finest doing what they do best.  Some critics will obviously point this out in the same way that The Green Berets was over the top patriotic at a time when the war in Vietnam was a decidedly unpopular affair. The thing is nowadays, the war wanes in popularity and support, but the support for the people fighting it has stayed high.

Yes, there are cliches in this movie, as in most movies, especially war movies when death is omnipresent in many scenes.  You have the life and death decision involving civilians, you have the evil beyond belief enemy (actually thats true more than a cliche), you have the military grabassery that is a bond of service (Actually a lot of truth there as well) and you obviously have the training montage at the beginning of the film as establishing scenes.  Being that I am a vet and a "gun guy" there were a few glaring technical gaffes that many people will not notice but seem all the more odd to somebody like me watching, Again, as I state above I realize many of these are put in for emphasis of certain points in the story, to enable the camera to get a comprehensive shot for the film, to compress time or due to a person or event being a composite of several people or events in the book.  After the movie my friends and I compared notes and came up with a few things that stood out to us:

  • In many of the scenes troops are shown in traveling positions much to close to what you would normally encounter (to avoid grouping targets for the enemy)
  • Kyle's "spotters" in his positions neither spot nor actually provide any security for him.  One actually plays games in the middle of the battlefield on a gameboy thing and tells him before a shot "you mess this up and they will burn your ass and send you to Leavenworth".
  • The scenes at Kyle's sniper training were laughable, with guys who would of been chosen based on their natural marksmanship skills were missing targets at 100 yards or so way to the side, with Kyle being one of the better shots but only able to make 8" groups at that range, until it comes time shoot a rattlesnake in which he is able to shoot the 2" wide snake with one shot.
  • There is a scene where an areal reconnaissance drone flies over Fallujah (or whatever city they were supposed to be in) at only a few hundred feet, done so they could pan from it to the ground easily.  A drone like that would be high overhead with its cameras able to still make out ground targets, to keep the drone out of small arms danger and also to not alert the enemy to its presence. 
  • Ranges spoken of in reference and the distances depicted in the movie were often way off. 
  • Air support seems to be a (dramatic) afterthought. 
  • At the end of the movie Kyle is shown using very poor weapons safety by pointing a gun at his wife in jest and then simply putting on a shelf with kids in the room before leaving.  

Again, most viewers will never notice these things, but its stuff we noticed, and I bet a few of you did as well.  I know enough to turn off my brain when necessary to enjoy a movie and it did not detract itself from my viewing experience.

One last thing, the ending.  Much has been written on social media about how quiet theaters are when this movie ends.  Mine was except for some guy in the rear that said "God Bless America" a couple of times...it sounded akward.  This is no fluke.  Eastwood ends the move rather abruptly with a scene where Kyle seems to have his life back where he wants it to be and leaving to help some Marine that has PTSD. His wife watches as he leaves with this young man with a look of concern on her face, and why she would have it on this particular occasion is left unanswered.  The film fades to black with a statement that Kyle was killed that day, and then goes to actual footage of his 200 mile procession on Rt 35 in Texas from his hometown to Dallas and scenes of his memorial service at AT&T stadium.  The credits then roll without sound.  In effect, Eastwood has drawn you into a wonderful memorial of this sailor's life and triumphs and allowed each and every viewer to pay their own private respects at the end, if they chose to.  A lot of people would not of know about Chris Kyle's life prior to this.  Matter of fact, a woman sitting next to our group let out a audible gasp and made comment when the frame with his death announcement came up, like she had no clue that the movie was about somebody that was dead. I bet there were a lot of similar reactions across the nation this weekend.

Eastwood nailed that ending, I was actually humbled to watch this movie and to be a part of the shared experience that that packed theater obviously felt at that time.

Oscar worthy....hell yes.

Go see it.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Bersa....part Dos

I know.... You thought I abandoned this place.... Well kind of....

Back in 2008 I owned a Bersa .380 for a time... Don't recall why I sold it... It was a decent gun and built to a level of quality above the purchase price. "Kicking some tires" last night I ran across a used CC (concealed carry) version of this pistol with its shortened snout, rounded hammer and corners and super model thin grips and like the way it felt in my hand.   And the price was right.. So it's in the safe now.

Sure it's bigger and nearly twice as heavy as my LCP - my other .380 - but that extra weight will surely help tame the snappy recoil I experience with the LCP and I get 2 extra rounds to price it without reloading (8+1). 

Sure.. it's a .380.... but then again while most say that the .380 is the "smallest big round" that you should consider carrying.... it's still in the "consider carrying"  category for a reason. With the proper load it is effective in its intended role.  I currently carry Hornady Critical Defense rounds in the LCP on those (few) occasions it's in my pocket... But there are other "hotter" loads I can try in this all metal pistol as well (Buffalo Bore?).

Depending on how it works out at the range and reliability, this may one day be the gun I give my daughter to take to her first apartment or house to help alleviate my own anxieties when I cannot carry a weapon for her own protection myself...

Range report to come

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Ruger exposes itself....LCRx


Ruger recently announced that it would be releasing its popular polymer small framed revolver, the LCR, with an exposed hammer and will call it the LCRx ("x" as in exposed and not extreme I assume!).  Personally, I don't get it.  The entire LC? line was marketed around dedicated use of the weapon for CCW.  All of them have incorporated long, double action trigger pulls as a safety precaution to carrying in ones pocket.   I have owned most of them at one time or another and they are all fine pistols.  Matter of fact the LCR in .38+P is my go to daily carry these days and I have no complaint.

But this one, I don't get.

The LCR was designed from the ground up for CCW applications.  This we know.  The polymer chasis was designed to keep the weight low and allow for easy of carry and also provided and easy way to include a "melted" finish to keep it as "snag free" as possible.   The exposed hammer kind of defeats the purpose of this handgun as designed in 2 ways as I see it:

  1. First, the exposed hammer presents an obstacle to work around for drawing the weapon from any type of concealment holster without a snag.  This has been a issue with snubbies for years and was the reason the concealed hammer was included on them in the first place.
  2. Secondly, and in my mind most importantly, the single action mode can help introduce bad habits in your training with this weapon.  The double action trigger on the LCR is very polished and smooth right out of the box due mostly to a unique cam action that Ruger patented for its use.  It makes shooting this weapon as a DAO revolver very easy...as it was intended to be.  In the "heat of battle" when you most likely will have to use a pistol like this, you won't be (or want to be) taking the extra time to manually cock the action to shoot.  In fact, smooth, double action shooting is what you should be training with on a pistol like this.

I would even go a step farther and fathom to say that legally this might also be a bad move.  There has been more than one suspect shot in custody while a weapon was cocked on single action and under the control of an excited and agitated trigger finger.  Somebody threatens you with a knife, you pull your LCRx out, they fall to the floor crying for mercy, you cock the weapon an point it at them and without realizing it....BANG!...thank you very light trigger!  Next thing you know a Pandora's Box of legal trouble is headed your way.

If you want a revolver to target shoot the center out of playing cards at 100 yards there are much better choices.  An all metal gun with target sights and a 6" barrel would be a more logical choice than this.

Sorry Ruger, this one I will pass on....meanwhile I am still happy as hell with what you have given me in the LCR itself.  Sometimes because you can doesn't mean you should.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Have you ever listened to "us" talk?

"Cierra la boca y no entra moscas"  (close your mouth and the flies wont get in) ~ Columbian proverb

Haven't been doing much with the blog or other social media as of late.  I have actually been contemplating during down for a bit.  Call it online burn out of sorts.  Honestly, I am getting tired of reading about guns all of the time, including my own musings on the subject.  Seriously, I know that every "hobby" has its own site hard followers that will argue ad nauseam over some miniscule detail of their particular interest that means nothing to the 99% of the population..  but man, we got it bag in the gun community.  Maybe it's because it hobby is so closely tied to a fundamental right that is constantly under attack that we feel the need to get so vocal about our opinions, but vocal we get! 

To most people, a gun is a gun in both form and function and is barely distinguishable one to the next.  Not to us gunnies.  We will argue over the most insignificant differences in firearms, developing a cult like following to particular models or brands that we hotly defend to faceless adversaries on the internet. 

Truth is, most of us can only argue academically in realistic terms about their use, especially "tactical" firearms.  Not many people have been in firefights or armed confrontations, and I bet a good amount of those that have won't talk about it to a unknown adversary on the net.  What we argue is based on what we have experienced target shooting or read about using our evil black guns...Not actually shooting other people.  Of course hunting firearms are as totally different matter, but that diffusion is for a different day.  

Think about this.  The average American spends about $850 a year on car insurance...about the same as a very nice handgun.  What do you actually think you will be more likely to do in your lifetime, file an auto insurance claim or shoot somebody? (Assuming of course you are not a LEO/.mil type).  Exactly, yet I don't see countless forums about how Allstates premium auto plan is vastly superior to State Farms product due to the miniscule differences in coverage.

For now I am content taking a hiatus from all of it.  I am still shooting and collecting..just a bit more quietly now...and always observing. 

There, first post in a long while and I throw a bit of poo into the fan...let's see how it blows back.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Rhino on Gun Control....The Damn Few

Just feel like posting this right now....available for purchase over at Ranger Up

Obama regime announces surprise curtail to military surplus imports...CRUFFERS UNITE!


Gabby Giggords, Anti-Gun meat puppet par excellence...

OK, President Obama basically got his ass handed to him by a congress that ultimately refused to push any radical anti-gun agenda through in the post Newtown circus...so he passed some guidelines that wil be implimented and now.....THIS?!?!

Administration announces new gun control measures, targets military surplus imports

Yeah, this makes total sense because the M2903 and other 5 shot, bolt action, 48" long wood rifles weighing 9 pounds are the weapon of choice used by gang bangers on the streets of the US....

Such BS....it stinks....

So those of us in the C&R circles will pay the price for all of this....because, you know my M1 Garand is a threat to American safety and all....I can only hope CMP survives.

Meanwhile, the "Wag the Dog" meter is pegged as we prepared to attack Syria....what a frickin' great age we live in bros....

Glock rumors.... .380 and and AR?!?!

"Heard it from a friend who...
heard it from a friend who...
heard it from another Glock's been messing around"

                                                             ~REO Speedwagon

Got the following Glock rumor via various sources not in my direct line of communication.....so consider the source I got before you rant...just passing on what I am hearing here.

So...... this rumor has 2 parts....first part, Glock is going to start selling a .380 auto in the US, presumingly the G25.  This would indicate to me that they are going to produce it within the US, as the "penalty" for importing the .380 does not give it enough "points" on this ATF checklist to be legal to import, some type of safeguard against the importation of so called "Saturday night specials" I think.  If so, I have mixed feelings about this.  First, happy that US made Glocks will be available to the US market.  Glock has been making some pistols in the US for export to countries that do not have a arms trade agreement with Austria directly for a few years, but few, if any, of these guns make it to US gunbuyers.  Secondly, kind of disappointed that they would do this before coming out with a small, single stack 9mm pistol.  Lets face it, the .380 craze is so 2008...everyone is buying (and making) single stack 9mm's now.  Not that Glock is known for any special innovation, but still it would of been nice.  Kind of curious to see how a larger .380 like the G25 will do in the market.  Ruger just released their LC9 pistol chambered in .380 so maybe the market is there for recoil sensitive shooters looking to fire a "mild" round out of a larger frame.

Also of note, I believe the G25 is the only non-locking breech Glock, relying on a simple blowback operation like many other .380s but retaining the overall Glock form.

Second part....get ready for it.....Glock to produce AR rifles?!?!?!?   Yep, that's what I heard, Glock is going to produce an AR with supposedly 2 different uppers available, 5.56mm and 6.8mm.  Why? Well, I suppose it has something to do with Glock's position in the law enforcement market and the move toward the so called "militarization" of our nations LEO officers, equipping squad cars with carbines instead of the traditional shotguns to better deal with modern threats on the mean streets.   Remember, when Glock first got into the LE market they offered ridiculous trade in discounts to departments, often sacrificing profits for long term customer loyalty that has served them well.  I wouldn't be surprised if this actually came to pass (that they made AR's) that they would be almost giving away their service pistols to departments that also bought their carbines.  Otherwise, I am sure having an AR with "GLOCK" stamped on the magwell would be enough to send sales skyrocketing on the civilian market side.

Personally, I would of liked to see Glock produce a compact, single stack 9mm to compete with the likes of the M&P Shield and XDS (both of which have had safety recalls issued this past week....oops, that would of been a market into boom if Glock had one ready to roll out now!).  That niche for compact 9mm's is/has taking/taken over from where the ultra small .380 boom left off.

Also, I still would like to see a pistol caliber carbine from them that utilizes Glocks standard mags.  Not only would I want one, but I think that quite a few LE agencies might be into issuing a weapon that offers better accuracy and penetration using the same logistical feeding system and round as the officers primary sidearm. 

Oh well, lets see if these rumors actually come true now....

Monday, August 26, 2013

Tales from the Buckeye State....

As you probably know, I am an Ohioan, not by birth but by location.  We are an eclectic state to say the least.   We have been one of those battleground states people get sick of hearing about every 4 years during presidential elections.  We hold our football coaches to higher standards than our politicians.  We have Appalachian coal miners, farmers, auto workers, insurance companies, health care and pharmaceutical businesses and every other conceivable enterprise under the sun going on here...even wine making.   Speaking of auto workers we have the union factories of GM and Ford as well as non-union Honda and other companies. We have one of the longest freshwater beaches in the country, mountains, glacial plains and river valleys.  People from the Northwest and South-eastern corners of the state would think they were on an alien planet if they every visited each others home. 

We are constantly being reminded of our past history of being heavily invested in manufacturing jobs that no longer exist here, our heavy union presence and sluggish economy married up to a perpetual welfare state.  Yet, we have some of the biggest and most innovated business ventures located here.  We have some of the most elite students attending our colleges here, yet have high school graduation rates that are appalling to even some third would countries in many of our school systems. 

We are the home of Wright-Patterson AFB, Camp Perry and the NRA national matches as well as the CMP North store.  Heck we even have a firearm company or two in this state....Hi-Point being the most recognized.  Unfortunately we also have some of the most anti-gun voices in the country here also....

Yeah, we are a kind of wacky, messed up mishmap of a mess here....

It's no surprise then that the following stories have recently come out of my Buckeye state.... (click on each bold title below to link to the related story)

#1 CCW Class instructor shoots student

OK, so when you're shopping for a class to get certified for a CCW permit here in Ohio you thought process goes something like this..."OK...certified training staff...check...  Adequate classroom and range facilites...check   All inclusive class fee that provides handgun, ammunition and lunch/snacks....check   Instructor has not shot his students..... che....WHAT THE HELL!!!!"

There is no conceivable reason why this should have happened.  At least 3 of the 4 cardinal rules of gun safety had to have been violated here.  Apparently (from info not in the linked article) the instructor was demonstrating that a revolver could be fired from a pocket when this happened.  I am assuming here based on conjecture and other info I have heard/read...that this was his personal CCW weapon in his pocket he mistook for a training pistol and used in his demonstration.

Ohio (and many other state I am sure) is awash in folks willing to take your money to give you a CCW class.  I myself considered teaching it for a while' but something I couldn't get over was the fact that the ORC (Ohio Revised Code) that governs the licensing process never really gives you a good idea of what the credentials should be for an instructor or what the cirriculum should consist of other than a certain number of range hours.  I know (because I have met some of them) there are guys out there teaching CCW classes that, personally, I wouldn't trust to be in the same room with me armed with airsoft guns.  Getting your NRA pistol certification and having a bean field to shoot into does not make you a good trainer.  This guy was teaching at an actual firearm center and had years of experience and still made this major screw up occur.  What will that guy with the one crazy eye in the white van parked down by the river do when you go to his class at his cousin Bobo's farm? 

I am NOT saying individual trainers or private training at non-traditional locations are universally to be avoided.  On the contrary, if you know what you are looking for you can find some great individualized and personalized instruction from these private instructors.  But, it is a buyers market for this type of activity, if you feel the least bit uneasy or questioning an individuals ability or qualification to instruct you, don't hesitate to bump and run to your next option. 

Oh yeah, about the instructor above...and again not in the article...it came out a week or so after the initial story broke that he had shot another individual indirectly 30 some years ago after firing a weapon at a Halloween party to create a "spooky atmosphere"...yeah, getting shot is pretty damn spooky...and terrifying.  The country prosecutor is now re-reviewing the circumstances of this latest shooting.

#2 Ohio man buys gun safe...gets it delivered...with $420K of pot in it!

So, a guy in Shelby, Ohio buys a champion safe from The Sportsmens Den and has it delivered to his house.  Upon opening it he finds 300 pounds of marijuana in it.  This actually makes sense if you consider where the safe comes from....Mexico. 

Ah, Mexico...the land that when foreigners look at the violence in the US they say..."yeah, its bad in America....but at least they aren't Mexico!".  Drug cartels have ripped apart this once amiable Southern neighbor of the US nad have corrupted not only the government but many private entities and individuals as well.   A safe would be a great way to smuggle drugs into the US because...well...its a safe!  Don't want people snooping through stuff to find your pot...stick it in a big metal box with a lock designed against unwanted entry. 
Yes, I know Cheech Marin has worked hard at getting passed his stoner personality from his early days....but he is still an icon in the stoner culture, he's Mexican and he has a gun in this picture...so it fits....Loved you in Tin Cup Cheech!

The thing I don't like is that the guy that ordered it must of offered up that he had 24 long guns and 12 shot guns to put in it.  Why offer up info like that to the public if you don't have to?  The safe itself sounds like a big one at 1000 pounds, although the inclusion of 300 extra pounds of weed seems like it should of been noticed by somebody along the way.....

No word on the missing driver yet.....

#3 Why aren't there more crazy people in Cleveland?

Your average liberal voter from the Communist Peoples Republic of Cuyahoga...

According to the above article, there area shockingly few number of people being treated for mental illness and being reported to the state in accordance with our 2004 CCW law as required.  Cuyahoga country (er, county but they think that they are their own sovereign state up there) - you know it as Cleveland - is not alone in this possible oversight, as some counties with populations of hundreds of thousands are only reporting a few cases while other with population much smaller have much higher reporting numbers.

Seems to me a city awash in idiot left wingers that constantly vote in left wing mayors, commissioners and other representatives - all the while with no economic improvement save to get more government money allocated to their coffers - would be a natural place for mental illness to be ripe.  These people voted and constantly support uber liberal Dennis Kusinich...the man that flat lined Cleveland's municipal bond rating while mayor.

And yes, I am quoting a San Francisco news source...that is reprinting an AP story.  Why? Because San Fran is a messed up liberal mecca with a big anti-gun voice and movement out there...if they notice this, well, we need to clean up our own back yard before outside forces do it at a national level with the BS politics going on today.   San Francisco...where illegal aliens get sanctuary status and benefits but not homeless Americans....but man, what a view!

If only Dirty Harry was real....

Friday, August 23, 2013

Gub'ment logic

Had to go renew my CCW license this morning and this was the for I had to go through....

In all honesty though, the folks working in the Franklin County CCW office here in Columbus made the process quick and painless for me, as well as having the for sight to send me à reminder letter which I appreciated.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Baby steps

Bought my daughter a Cricket .22 last year to shoot...she still hasn't shot it. Combination of a bit of trepidation and logistics getting her out to a range has hampered my efforts.  Decided to go another route....bought her a Crossman 760 air rifle....OK...BB gun.

This thing is actually fun as hell to shoot.  I can adjust the velocity via how many pumps to give it just enough "umph" to penetrate a shoot-n-see target without going through our backstop (cardboard box with newspaper and magazines in it).  After the first couple of shots I can tell the accuracy of both the gun and the kid were one par not to make me worry too much about errant cats getting shot by misses in the neighbourhood....just in case used a big tree as a backstop and I also have a 6' high wooden fence around the backyard.

Overall, my kid is a decent shot.  We went over gun safety (of course), basics of good positioning, breathing, sight picture and trigger squeeze.  If she concentrated, she could put most of her shots in the center of the target. 

Baby steps man....gotta take those baby steps first.....Mosin next week....

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

You heard it here before The Blaze covered it....

I posted last week about bad service rendered towards a LGS here in Columbus by the post office....in the article I said that one of the owners was going to be interviewed by The Blaze....

Here is the article on The Blaze...

and here is a link to that gun shop...LEPD, I like this place, review forth coming...

"Workplace Violence"....not so much

“We the Mujahideen are imperfect Muslims trying to establish the perfect religion in the land of the supreme god … I apologize for any mistakes I made in this endeavor.”

~ MAJ Nidal Hasan (AKA MAJ Asshole Muthafudger) to the jury on his first day of trial in the shooting deaths of 13 soldiers at Fort Hood in 2009. 

I won't say "the shooting deaths of his fellow soldiers" like I have heard some news outlets state....he doesn't deserve that amount of respect from me for being a soldier...his rank is purely an administrative title for now. 

I fully expect, or rather demand, that the Department of the Army and Whitehouse publicly renounce their use of the term "workplace violence" in the description of this event and replace it with "domestic terrorism" and "treason".

God bless the souls of my fellow soldiers that were lost in this premeditated act of cowardly betrayal by an educated murderer who was fully aware of his motivations and the recourse of his actions on that horrific day.

Personally I think the survivors should each be allowed 15 minutes with him alone in a room with their choice of a blunt object with the requirement that he needed to be breathing when they left...and then taken out and be drawn and quartered.  But hey, we're civilized...I think the normal sentences of either a firing squad or hanging will do.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

EDC and me...

It seems I can't go a week without coming across another article or post online about somebody's EDC (everyday carry) gear....that stuff that they have with them at all times in case of an emergency or Chinese paratroopers drop from the sky or something.  Most peoples gear is centered around some type of weapon, usually a handgun and knives, tool and the like.  Some folks go to great lengths to utilize tactical purses and the like to carry and organize their gear and some go as far as to have a secondary EDC gear pouch in their primary gear pouch.

Me? I'm not quite so heavy with my EDC.....

Like many of you, I spend the majority of my days away from home at my place of employment. I take into consideration that I work in an organization that is very much a no carry locale, the type of clothing I normally wear during most of my day is business casual (khaki slack and a polo or button down shirt) and that my transportation to and from this place is in my (well stocked and with a "go bag") truck.  This lends me to have a more Spartan EDC loadout than many would otherwise go for, and some of it is carried in either my jackets or a case I use to carry my iPad to and from work in.

Generally, and this will sound weird coming from a firearm related blog, my EDC is NOT centred around my weapon.  Its actually centred around my phone. 

  • Phone. Its the means in which I communicate with my most important and valuable things in my life, my family. I want to be sure that, in an emergency, that I would be able to at least make some type of contact with my wife and or parents and siblings to coordinate some type of plan. In addition, like many Americans, my phone has become an extension of myself and the means in which I keep abreast of current events and news, communicate via email, text and social media and also do various other things. 
  • Wallet.  After my phone my secondary consideration would be my wallet, in my case, a front pocket clip with card holders.  Its how I carry items (money, debit card) to pay for the things in my life and also carry the card that legally allows me to carry the 3rd piece of my EDC in my state, my weapon.
  • Weapon.  OK, now to what is usually the primary focus of most gun blogs on this subject, the gun.  In my case its usually my .38+P Ruger LCR or LCP in .380.  I am planning to start working my G26 into the rotation, but currently I am only usually packing one or the other of these.  With either I carry a speed strip (LCR) or a spare mag (LCP).
  • Light. I normally carry a small AAA flashlight by Countycomm, it has both a uber bright and normal bright mode, weighs less than an ounce and generally is so small I have to keep from forgetting where I put it.  Since neither of my CCW weapons accepts a light, I think having this is kind of important and also has a good general utility usefulness. 
  • Knife. A lot of people include a "battle blade" in their EDC.  I don't.  Sometimes I will carry a decent size folder, but truth be known, I would totally suck at knife fighting.  Therefore I will generally include some type of blade for utility purposes as part of "Swiss Army" knife or as part of a....
  • Multitool. I would prefer to carry a multitool that includes a blade general purpose work as well as a set of pliers and a screwdriver.  You will find all sort of uses for one when you DON'T have it on you, trust me. 
  • Other Items. I will often carry one of those small first aid kits sold at the store that have a few bandaids and some antiseptic cream in them.  Also I will occasionally carry some meds in the form of some motrin or similar as well as rolaids or something else for an upset stomach.  Generally these items will not be normally on my but in some type of bag I may have on me.
Here is a typical (at least today) EDC setup for me.  It may not work for everybody, but it works for me...

Ruger LCR in an Uncle Mike's pocket holster, speed strip with 6 rounds, Samsung Galaxy S4, Countycomm AAA light, original Leatherman tool and my money clip with my fortune displayed...
I guess Ideally I would like to come up with some type of EDC carry config that consists of items in some type of leather pouch - maybe an old phone case - on my belt that I could have with me at all times without putting bulk in my pockets or drawing any attention from others.

Something to work on in my idle time at home.....

Monday, August 5, 2013

A fantastic flea market find...

My wife and her sister opened up a booth in an antique mall over this Spring and specialize in repairing and repainting used furniture and items for re-use.  They hunt and scavenge for inventory through a number of resources....auctions, yard sales, estate sales and even the humble flea market.  Flea markets are an cultural activity going back hundreds, if not thousands of years that establish the basic concept of commerce in society; and were used as a primary means of selling, bartering and trading before the establishment of fixed structures for these purposes became commonplace.  Today in America, flea markets have gone from quaint 2nd and 3rd tier economic events to sometimes upscale and swanky events thanks to the likes of HGTV and other reality style TV shows....

The flea market in Delaware, Ohio that I went to with my wife is pretty much on the other end of that spectrum....

Gathering at the Delaware County Fairgrounds each Sunday from 8 until noon, the market attracts people from all over to sell their goods on folding tables gathered along "trails" around the fairgrounds grandstand at a price of $15 a day to do so.  You can find everything from fruits and vegetables, grocery items (obviously being sold by "ultra couponer" types), tools, yard equipment, mopeds, household goods, porn (no I didn't look, would you buy it from and old guy selling it out the back of his van?), clothing, and yes....even guns.

Looks legit to me...
 The majority of firearms that were on display for sale would mostly fall in my opinion into one of two categories...."Fudd guns" and "Mall Ninja Specials".  In the category of "Fudd Guns" there were a bevy of used hunting shotguns, bolt action and tube fed .22 rifles, old revolvers and pistols and even a few black powder pieces for good show.  Over on the "Mall Ninja Special" category you had Hi-Point pistols, "tactical" shotguns and a few .22 type rifles and the like...in much fewer quantities that the fudd offerings.  In addition there was a vast array of items in the "accessory" category often associated with firearms.....literally tons of knives and blades, some ammo, cases, holsters, web gear and military clothing, magazines (aka "clips" to many of the masses assembled) and other such gun show "bling".

There are always exceptions though...

I found this guy in the middle of the market that had a couple of M1 Garands on his table and a Mauser style rifle along with a bunch of ammo.  Both Garands were in decent shape, but listed at around $900 a piece (not that anyone necessarily pays full price at these things) and the Mauser was marked $250.  After a bit of haggling - actually me just starting to walk away - he offered it at $150...SOLD!  Here it is....

My version of a Swedish meatball.... and no, you won't find this at Ikea, they have a posted no CCW policy...bastards...

Its a Swedish M38 Mauser pattern short rifle in 6.5x55mm made by Husqvarna in 1943.  The Swedish government "officially" maintained a policy of neutrality with both the axis and ally powers during WWII, but never-less with war raging all around them the did maintain military weapons production during the war to update and maintain their own forces. Part of this production was designed around the older M1896 patterned Mauser rifle in 6.5x55mm.  The round was decided on jointly by both Norway and Sweden as a joint use round, with each country using their own procured rifle for it, in Norway's case the Krag-Jorgensen rifle that the US Army eventually adopted.  The Swedes shortened and updated the design in 1938 (hence M38) and produced this particular version as a "short rifle" between 1942 and the end of the war by the Husqvarna company (the same one that makes tools and tractors ).

Overall, its in excellent condition and according to my friend and very knowledgeable friend, Otto, a steal at that price! I also bought a can of Greek surplus .30-06 ammo (CMP stock) from the guy at a bit above what I knew that they went for up at Camp Perry, but then again I don't have to spend 4 hours and gas money to go get my own now either.  In addition, for farts and smiles, I bought a used Jennings compound bow just to play around with. 

Now, before anyone tries to snipe at me with a comment, keep in mind that the buying and selling of firearms as personal property is perfectly legal in Ohio as long as both parties are legally able to possess said firearms in the locality in which the transaction takes place.  While I was not asked if I was a resident or under disability to own a firearm (that, I believe, is the legal term) I did offer up my CCW card to the seller (who turned out to be a fellow Ohio Gun Collectors Association - OGCA for short - member himself) and gave verbal notice that I was able to own one.  Furthermore, since the firearm I purchased (which I am voluntarily disclosing in a public forum here) falls within the list of Curio & Relic firearms, I have entered it into my 03 FFL C&R "Bound Book" as is requried by law.... See NSA, I have nothing to hide....

So in the end I found out that sometimes out of the way places are also great places to find a good C&R bargain....don't overlook them!

Friday, August 2, 2013

USPS Clerk in Columbus refuses to handle handgun being shipped by FFL holder......."religious basis"

I was case shopping (for something I really don't need) at a local family owned gun store / range called LEPD on the Northwest side of Columbus yesterday.  I overheard one of the owners, Eric, tell this story to another customer and had to drop an ear on the conversation.

The story goes something like this...

They (the store) were shipping a handgun to another FFL (for what reason I did not catch, not that it matters) and one of the owners took it to the local US Post Office for mailing.  After waiting his turn in line, he got up to the clerk, placed the box on the counter and handed and the required paperwork to the clerk.  The clerk looked at the owner and said something to the effect that they refused to handle that particular package based on "religious" beliefs.  She then instructed the owner to wait at the next window...that was unmanned...for somebody else to take care of them.  The owner obliged (I would of made a scene myself and forced him/her to get a supervisor...but then again in this day and age you would probably get shot by an armed postal inspector or something doing that) and stood their waiting for 20 minutes without anybody coming out to help them.  They called Eric to relate the story, Eric got back on the phone and called the post office and raised hell to which a person finally came out and took care of them.  Eric was so flustered that he actually called into the Glenn Beck show and was put in contact with somebody from The Blaze who is going to run a story on this.

Frickin' incredible.  The USPS has never exactly been known for being efficient or mindful of its customers, but the fact that this clerk simply refused to do their job over this is ludicrous.  Fine, if they did have a legitimate "religious" objection to handling firearms I would like to hear it and have them list other specific instances where they have refused service on this basis.  If, however, they did this on (what I and I think the owner may suspect) to be personal or political beliefs than its time to go hit the legal eagles up for discrimination.  Sorry, handling all sorts of packages is a Bona Fide Occupational Requirement for that type of job.  If you don't like it, quit your cushy job and go hand out fries at McDonald's or something else.

I just wonder if this "religious" objection to firearms keeps her from doing some of the following....

  • Shop at Walmart...who has a gun department
  • Watch films that glorify gun violence - either with actors that support guns or ones that are hypocrites that use guns to make millions acting and then lobby against them off screen....more of the latter than former...
  • Go to Starbucks or any other store that either explicity allows the carrying of concealed weapons or has a hands off approach and allows local laws to decide, as in they don't post their own "no guns allowed" signs.
  • Work in a organization that arms some of its personnel...postal inspectors.

Point is, in this age of "political correctness" and "tolerance" we all have to walk a line sometime between our beliefs and what can be seen as "offensive" to others.  A lot of the time you just have to roll with the local culture.  Over in Kuwait we were instructed not to eat and drink in public during Ramadan during the day, even if everyone knew we obviously weren't Muslim.  However, the interjection of your beliefs into your professional occupation, religious or otherwise, should always be balanced against the affected individuals rights as well.  In this case, if it was indeed a religions objection the clerk had against firearms (I dunno, maybe they were a Jain Indian, in that case it would be legit and we have a large Indian population in Columbus) then I would expect, or rather DEMAND, that USPS management be on site to intervene and not inconvenience the customer in order to make this religious accommodation.  IF this was however, a personal belief that was being used to deny the 2nd amendment rights of this individual as a owner of a licensed FFL to obtain "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" by running their business....well, let the lawsuit begin. 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A MILLION page views.....give or take 10,000

Well just to show you how little I have been on here I have failed to mark in a timely manner the reaching of 1 million page views of this blog.  I used to get excited about hitting milestones like this, but as you probably have noticed, my heart has just not been into blogging over the past several months. 

Thanks to all those that have visited over these past 5 or so years and have added a tick to that counter....and to all the spam and advertising referral bots that have done the same....

5 Minute Review - North American Arms .22lr Mini-Revolver

On break at work right now, got 5 minutes to bang this out on the iPad...here goes...

On a whim bought one of those little revolvers I am always seeing in the case at my LGS. I actually found a very low price for them on their web page that was a mistake, but they honored it for me.

The pistol is a North American Arms mini-revolver in .22 long rifle. They also are made in .22 short and .22 magnum. While not the most effective caliber for self defense, A gun is better at having NO gun! This is a niche firearm, that niche is deep, deep concealment. This gun is roughly 4" long by 2" high and weighs about 5 ounces loaded with 5 .22lr rounds. By purely "box" dimensions, it's about as big and weighs as much (empty) as my iPhone 4, which I usually have on me every waking moment of the day...so would this little pistol be carried as envisioned by the designers.

The manufacture and finish are excellent on this little gun. It's made in Provo, Utah...a state with a long and illustrious firearms tradition. It s is really well made with attention to detail being evident. It is a single action only rimfire revolver with an exposed hammer. The instruction manual outlines the proper way to unload and load this pistol which includes having to cover the muzzle with your hand as well as lower the hammer manually into safety notches on the cylinder - READ IT!! I have absolutely no complaints about its design, save for one which I will discuss shortly.

Took the gun out to my friend Otto's to shoot and and was...how do I say this...disappointed. Accuracy is not the strong suit of this pistol and I knew it going into the purchase. However, at about 5 paces I was struggling to get one out of 5 rounds into a 12"x12" shoot-n-c square. Part of this is due to te one design flaw I found. The sights are fairly small on any gun this size, however on the mini .22 when cocked, the hammer spur obscures the use of the tiny rear notch to even try and align them. This combined with the small grip - which I do not consider a flaw, it's small dimensions is why you would buy this pistol - make accuracy very hard with this gun. Now, some will say that this is a last ditch, belly gun for those up close and personal "get off me!" Moments..to which I reply that I don't intend to allow someone to get that close, let alone 5 paces if I can help it and would prefer a weapon I feel confident at using at that range.

Speaking of grips, I did find the small smooth wood grips to be difficult to use but they do offer different grips on their web site including rubber pebble grips and a folding grip (that actually fills the hand) that may help control the weapon better.

I have also heard that these are good "snake guns" when loaded with shot. I tried out some #12 .22 shot shells at the same distance and they did pepper the paper well. However, when fired at an old plastic bleach bottle fills with water at the same distance the shot failed to penetrate the plastic bottle, and in fact a good amount bounced back and hit me without any damage! (Yes I had eye pro on!)

So overall, while I feel lot his is a well made product and certainly does have a niche application at some level, it just wasn't my cup of tea. I often carry a Ruger LCP in .380 which I think is about as small as a platform I feel comfortable carrying. I applaud NAA for their craftsmanship on this pistol though, and would be interested to see what they could do making a bigger, full sized gun with that level of quality.

(That actually took two days and about 10 minutes but oh well!)

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

My doppelgänger......Drew Carey?

Well, the post I promised on Facebook yesterday didn't publish for some reason and its sitting in the Windows Live Writer draft box a jumbled mess...sort that our later. it was a piece on the German P-38/P1 pistol on case the suspense was killing you.

Anyway, here's something else to ponder.   Started a diet last month and am down about 24 pounds, give or take a pound, as of today. I Went to lunch with a friend who said she thought I looked like Drew Carey now. My first thought was "I had to lose 20 pounds just to look like Drew Carey?

Drew, like myself, is a veteran. He was a Marine 30 some years ago while I was Army flavored. Yes, we are both sexy beasts but is there really that much of a resemblance?

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

The end of the ammo shortage and beginning of the new normal

Went to my local Cabela's last night, other than .22, 9mm and .38spl, e shelves were fairly well stocked with both rifle and pistol center fire ammo...

I have been able to buy ammo at LGS shops for a while and also at some local big box retailers lately as well. I have gotten similar reports from others both online and in person as well.

I think maybe we are climbing out of the barren pit of supply that was caused partially out of panic buying in the wake of POTUS being re-elected and Sandy Hook fear hype of big gub'ment takin' away our guns. The fact that around the sample time that DHS made a ungodly order for ammo that stressed manufacturers capacities didn't help either.

I don't know if manufacturers finally tooled up and ramped up production or if the huge DHS orders have been filled and the supply is finally getting back to the civilian market, but it seems we can breathe a bit easier about getting our hands on ammo.

The ammo shelf in its heyday, I have shot up quite a bit since this pic was taken.

I will admit that after the election I bought into the hoarding mentality myself and went a bit crazy with ammo purchases. I have come to the point where I now can pass over ammo purchases if I think the prices are too inflated because of my modest stockpile. And I should point out that my ammo shelf is not full purely out of panic buying but also because in the "good times" I would routinely buy a box or two more than I thought I would need to shoot that weekend "just in case" when prices were low. Brick of .22 stacked chest high in the store for $11.99?...sure throw a box in the cart...next thing you know you have 7,000 rounds of the stuff in storage.

The new normal

Unfortunately I feel that we have come to a new norm as it pertains to pricing. Boxes of 9mm I used to buy for $8 are now $20+, .45 is upwards of $30 in many places and good old 5.56 is now $10 a box. Wow. To their credit stores like Walmart and Meijers in my area have pretty much stuck to pre-panic pricing levels, which may be why ammo flies off their shelves and is scarcely found there. If there indeed was some type of conspiracy for the government to drive up prices by limiting supply by the DHS order, well mission accomplished guys. I am not an economist by any means, but what I know that once people get conditioned and used to paying a certain price for a good, there is usually little incentive for the supplier to lower its retail cost on their own.

Welcome to the new normal folks, cheap shooting is so 2007.......
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Sunday, June 23, 2013

World War Z finally makes it to the theaters... (Warning: Spoilers)

....and it doesn't disappoint.

First off, long time no post, sorry.  Same excuses as normal....

The adaptation of Max Brook's book has finally been released in theaters this weekend and is making a lot of money right now.  But is the money all of the people going to see it worth it?  In one word, yes.

If you read the book you may of found it, like I did, a bit sluggish in parts.  I mean really its a book about the character Brad Pitt plays in the movie going around getting first hand accounts of the zombie plague from survivors to document it for the UN, not necessarily to cure it.  Matter of fact, if I remember correctly the book takes place 10 years or so after the initial plague and tells stories from the viewpoint of various people to include:

  • An Indian office worker that barely escapes on an ad hoc flotilla 
  • A blind monk who survives with the aid of a staff in Japan.
  • A web surfer who relates how he was so attached to following the event online he failed to realize it was happening around him.
  • A Russian priest that puts down Russian soldiers who have been bitten fighting the undead to save their souls from condemnation if they commit suicide to avoid their fate.
  • A US soldier who is a member of a transformed Army created specifically to fight the hordes.
  • A man who fought in the massive catacombs under Paris removing the undead.
  • An industrialist in exile who pro fitted in the middle of the disaster.

In the book the undead are massive shambling hordes that sometimes take hours or even days to arrive at a location and mankind has been reduced to living in safe zones while eradicating the zombies or waiting for their eventual deterioration to dust.  In the movie the zeds are running, swarming masses that pile on each other scrambling and climbing like some pile of army ants.  Actually, that's a pretty good comparison for a movie called "World War Z". Anyway, the protagonist in the movie, "Gerry" played by Pitt, is transformed from some bureaucrat from the book into a U.N. investigator that specializes in investigation the more nastier places on the planet.

There are made some assumptions and mistakes shown in the film that would otherwise make it a somewhat "unbelievable" farce, but the pace and action is generally good enough throughout it to make you just skim over these little mistakes.  But hell, what fun would this be without pointing out a few, so here we go (again, caution: spoilers ahead)

  • They say that airlines were the perfect transmitter for this disease in the movie to spread it throughout the world, yet the transmission time was mere seconds, as it was shown in the movie, any plane taken over by them would most likely not make it to its destination.
  • A C-141 takes off from an aircraft carrier. OK, maybe JATO or something, but how would it of landed?
  • In the scene where they are trying to sneak through the WHO research facility and are freaking about stepping on glass and such while walking about that will make noise to attract the undead, what about the undead making noise milling about, wouldn't that make them attract each other. 
  • The general assumption that the UN would actually solve anything.
  • They make a big deal about Gerry's one daughter having asthma in the beginning of the movie, and then as soon as they reach the ship she is pretty much out of the script.  Why bother to build that detail into the movie?  Same thing with that little Hispanic kid they save.
  • WTF was up with David Morse's CIA character in the Korean scene?  I know it gave a continuance to the plot line to get him to Israel, but seriously, a rogue, crazy CIA agent just happens to be there like that?
  • It takes like 10 seconds to turn into being a zed, but he chops off that Israeli's soldier's hand after they got bit like 5 or 6 seconds later and she doesn't turn.  So I guess the virus just sits there at the bite site for 10 seconds and then shoots through the movie.  And it seems like he was rushing her to the WHO facility because I thought he must of realized she was naturally immune....nope.

This is my daughter, she has asthma.  If you forget that don't worry we won't reference that again...

But on the other hand, the movie does a few things very well....

  • After the initial credits, the movie introduces you to Gerry and his family, and then right away starts the action...very cool, no waiting.
  • I saw it in 3D, the affects were not over gimicky once you got used to the idea that most scenes had some type of depth to it.  Again, very cool.
  • The zombie masses are CGI, but really done CGI, and the large city scapes with fires burning in large cities is done well. 
  • As he has proved before, Brad Pitt can pull off action movies, and this movie turns a fairly slow, cerebral read into a vehicle he can drive fairly well. 

I'm Brad Pitt, and this is my hair, deal with it.....I sleep with Angelina Jolie, deal with it....and yeah, she had her breasts removed.....I bought her better breasts....bigger breasts....yeah...'cause I'm Brad Pitt....deal with it....

While the concept of the book somewhat relates to the book, the story line takes off on its own tangent after the first hour and ends up different from the book.  We generally don't like movies with bleak endings so the movie does make its own "happy" ending separate from the book. Overall, the ending is a bit weak, ok, we are somehow able to make a "livable" form of meningitis that is still bad enough for the undead to avoid us as being undesirable, but still weak enough to survive, all after the best virologist we have offs himself with a ND after falling (keep your finger off that Glock trigger folks!) and most of the known world, to include our research and development facilities, have been overrun.  OK, suspend disbelief a bit and enjoy the ride.

Can I recommend this movie as a truthful adaptation of the book, no.  Can I recommend it as a good, Summer action blockbuster....most definitely.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Another expensive lesson in what to do if stopped by the police while carrying

Well, got this view in my rear view on Sunday....

Damn.....   but notice the Crusader Weaponry hat on the 'ol noggin....
Yep, did what would of been called a "Baghdad Stop" coming off the highway onto a state route....that is, I didn't exactly come to a complete stop.  In convoys overseas you never stop if at all possible in order to limit the chance of providing a target to an IED or insurgent attack, but I digress....

On Sunday I was heading up to my Mother-In-Law's place in Bucyrus, Ohio (about an hour North of Columbus...home of the Bucyrus Bratwurst Festival...where they only serve the best of the wurst!) to pick up some tools and a tool chest that belonged to my late Brother-In-Law from her barn.  On my last trip up there I came across a couple of very irate raccoons in the barn that seemed a bit pissed at my disturbing their  sleep.  On the chance that their aggressiveness might be due to some type of rabies I decided to take a little "insurance" in the form of some .38 +P rounds.  I could of brought a .22 but decided a .38 would probably be more humane if it came to that.  Why not a shotty?  Simple, easier to carry a pistol and I can carry it loaded with my CCW license in the vehicle.  I decided to use the Ruger GP-100 I recently acquired would do the trick and carried it in the cross body shoulder holster that came with it.

Getting back to the "incident", so I pull off the highway, get to the end of the off ramp and don't come to a complete stop (allegedly) and see the blue flashers in the rear view (whatever happened to red?) and immediately pulled over like a good citizen. I rolled down the window, turned off the truck, took my drivers license and CCW ID out and kept my hands on top of the wheel.

Now, in Ohio, part of our law requires us to notify the officer that we are a license holder and if we do/do not have a weapon on us if we are stopped by law enforcement in the performance of their job....eg. getting stopped for a traffic offense.  This is not the case in all states, matter of fact I was talking about this very thing  a week or so ago on FaceBook with a web friend from Arizona, which is a Constitutional Carry state and has no such requirement.  Ironic. What to take from this is know the laws of your state and whatever state you may be driving in.  Knowing the laws, and following them, in these matters will go a long way to making life much easier for you.  

Rest of the story in one paragraph or less...... As she came up I let her know I was licensed and armed...she asked where it was and I nodded under my arm with my head.  As she looked into the truck and saw the grip sticking out from under my arm her eyes got big as saucers as she reached into the truck and removed it while telling me that in this case she was going to take the weapon due to its location between us.  In Ohio, law enforcement officials have the right to do so for their safety.  After the stop was over and she issued me the ticket she let me know that I could retrieve my pistol from the rear of my truck, on top of the cover where she placed it, once she left.  After taking off I noticed that she parked a short distance down the road and left once she saw that I did pick it up and didn't drive off like a idiot with it bouncing off the back onto the road.

Anyway, the entire ordeal was a lot less eventful that this many words would seem to indicate. What I guess I mean to show here is that if I could be pulled over while armed and have such a mundane exchange with a LEO, maybe it shows that - at least here in the heartland  - the battle for our 2A freedoms can be won....one positive, responsible interaction between "us" and "them" at a time.

Now, about that $138 ticket.....

Thursday, May 23, 2013


I am totally in awe of the sweater of deceit being undone around the administration these days in the wake of so many scandals breaking in the news....well "breaking" is stretching it a bit, some have been building for months.

From the 80's with Scandal - "Goodbye To You". We can only hope....

Benghazi - Iam all out for impeachment on this item if what I read is true. We pretty much abandoned our embassy staff to their fates as to Avoid angering the Libyan government (that we helped gain power) by the use of military force in their country. And then tried to cover up the reason behind the attack by blaming some obscure film. And Mrs. Clinton, what difference does it make now you ask? None. What difference may had it made at the time? Possible 4 lives worth, hence the scrutiny.

Wiretapping - funny how the press so nonchalantly reports about our second amendment rights are taken away, but scream when it's found out the 'gubment has tapped it's own phones... Still, wrong is wrong and this is entirely wrong!

IRS - might as well stand for "idiots, repression and scandals"...did you rely think you would target groups that were based largely on constitution beliefs and think nobody would notice you were treating them with more scrutiny? Your fearless leader claims innocence and then invokes the 5th...yeah, nothing going on in there....kind of reminds me of 'ol Joe The Plumber...

Drone Strikes - administration first authorizes style killing of US citizens sans trial by way of a drone strike, OK, I am all for the elimination of threats to our country...but why do we give non-US citizens (who ARE terrorists) full right to trial under our laws when we catch them red handed and kill US citizens just because they are on a list and we have a window of opportunity?
Over all, not a happy time for one particular President...sorry can't blame "W" for every single activity in his 8 years and then expect to get a pass during yours....

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Franklin County (Ohio) now issuing veteran ID cards.

If you are veteran living in the Central Ohio area in Franklin County (Columbus) you can now go apply for and receive a ID card specifically identifying you as such. 

Story HERE

I am on the fence as far as this goes.  I don't necessarily think its a bad idea insofar as guys who honorably served their country usually don't have any type of identification showing this to take advantage of any discount offers that they may be eligible for.  Carrying around a copy of your DD214 is not what I would normally call a very smart or convenient alternative.  On the other hand, I don't think that this is something that the county, or state for that matter should do for anybody that has served in one of the uniformed services.  I don't also like the idea that in order to get one that you need to put your DD214 on file with the county.  First off, what purpose does that serve and I have also heard about people having identity theft problems from info available via FOIA requests of this data.  It seems to me that the VA should be in charge of putting something like this together as the federal representative in these affairs.  In fact, people do get issued VA ID cards when entitled to certain types of care.  The problem is this, like everything else, the higher in government the responsibility goes, the more complex and boondoggled it also gets.  The VA is already backlogged enough as is and putting another item on their plate doesn't seem to be the answer.

My answer is this.  There are already thousands of designated DEERS/ID card centers in the military as is.  Make the cards available through them and also make the issuance of one a required part of out-processing of current personnel.   I don't think that a picture should be necessarily required, so you could even have them processed via the mail system.  I know its a lot to do to get folks a free lunch once a year at Applebees, but I feel at least its what we should be doing.

Friday, May 17, 2013

What part of the spear are you?

Lately it seems I have run across a lot of social groups on FaceBook and other places dedicated to the purpose of letting the world know that one type of military specialty (usually combat arms type) is vastly superior to every other organization in the organized US war machine, save none.  Well, this is just preposterous.  No single branch or specialty can fight by itself.  The entire machine must operate as a cohesive unit, regardless of branch or job, in order for US goals to be met and personnel and interests safeguarded.  A lot of times you will hear or see someone say or write that they or someone else was "at the tip of the spear".  Well, what does that mean?  Let's use the spear as an analogy to represent our military forces and go from there....

The spear is the brainchild of some long lost cave dweller that probably noticed that the thinner the end of a long stick was, the easier it was to stab and pin his dinner to the ground.  From there the idea just exploded across many cultures and continents, will all major pre-firearm societies utilizing some type of version of a stick with a point on them.  The spear comes in various lengths and names (from a short version - javelin, to a long stand off weapon - the lance) but all fulfill one basic purpose.  In an era before gunpowder, the spear gave you the ability to stand off against an opponent at short range.  Sure, at longer range you could engage with a volley of arrows, but when the enemy had closed on your ranks arrows could indiscriminately hit your own people.  The spear could be used to thrust out and stab at your enemy from behind a shield before they could slash at your with their sword, be used to dismount and enemy off of their horse and even thrown at them as most people seem to think they are intended to be used. The Romans used them effectively as throwing. weapons by the implementation of the pilum.  The pilum was a heavy spear with a very thin, barbed and usually softer head and shank.  Before rushing an opponent the legionaries would throw their pilums at their enemy, those not hit with them directly would have them stick in their shields hopefully.  The barbed head would make them hard to remove, and soft metal would make then bend upon impact.  It either made the opponents shield more difficult to use with the pilum stuck in it, or rendered the pilum useless to be thrown back.  Here's a short clip from the movie "300" showing the (highly stylized and choreographed) use of the Greek spear in the movie...

Back to my analogy....

The tip of the spear.

The proverbial tip....this is where the blade is the thinnest but usually the sharpest. It begins the process of wounding with the spear so that the remainder of the weapon may follow through and do its job.  In jabbing attacks aimed at taking out a specific target it can do damage all by itself by being inserted into the target and then quickly removed.

If you have ever spent your time in the military in a unit or group that makes up less than 1/10 of 1% of the total combat force, you are probably in the tip of the spear.  If you have ever suddenly realized it was 3am in the morning and you have been training for 3 days straight without any serious attempt at rest...you probably are in the tip.  If you have ever been assigned to a unit that you yourself didn't know the actual name of....you are probably in this group.  Navy SEALS, Army SF, Delta Force, Air Force PJ, Marine Recon, Rangers... you get the idea.

The flank of the blade.

Alright, they flank (or sides) of the blade are devestating to an opponent.  While the tip makes the initial cut the flanks cut for a much longer distance and can slash on their own as well, making very wide and brutal damage occur over a wide area. There is a part of the flanks that actually makes up a small percentage of the tip.

OK, enough ripping off Jeff Foxworthy for analogies.  Combat Arms guys, here is you.  Infantry, Armor, Artillery, Engineers, Cav, Air Cav, CAS...you get the idea.  Keep in mind not every single entity may solely exist on one part of the spear at all times. Lets take my hard charging Ranger friends for example.  I have already listed them in the tip of the spear as they can operate in small, very forward units performing surgical strikes or capturing airfields and the like.  In a larger group they can operate as part of a lead or key force in a larger attack, hence the flanks.   

The flanks are the combat meat-&-potatoes part of the fight.  More people designated to shoot bag guys and blow their stuff up will be here than anywhere else.  Be very proud to be a "flanker", your training will have been tough to get here and your pride hard earned. 

The Spine

The spine is that portion of the blade that runs down the middle and gives support and rigidity to the sharp flanks and tip.  It gives weight to the attack and keeps the blade from flexing and deviating from it intended path.  

Combat support folks...this be your area.  You are close enough to the attack to see and feel its affects first hand and even may participate in it once in a while.  But your main reason for getting your war on is to support those doing the fighting directly by medical, logistical, maintenance, transportation and other battlefield needs.  Its often said that the battle is won on the front lines and the war on the supply lines.  Don't be ashamed of that combat patch you wear for being on the FOB turning a wrench so that the guys taking that truck outside the wire had a reliable means of getting back inside later.  

The Shaft

The shaft is the long, wooden staff that the blade is attached to.  In not only provides the means for the blade to reach out and cut someone, it also provides valuable mass behind the attack to drive the blade home to kill its target and also provides stability for the blade while in flight if throne.  In addition it can also be used as both a defensive measure to ward off an attack or stuck in the ground to help unseat a rider, but can also be used in its own right as a weapon by striking with its tip, abet with less effect than the blade.

REMF's of the world unite!  This is where I was in the war.  The folks providing combat service support (rear, and rear-rear area) from places mostly removed from direct combat.  The "I got a combat patch for being in theater) type folks, yours truly included.  Its not glamorous work, but its important.  Nobody gets an "Combat Admin Badge" (well, got to check with the Air Force regs before being 100% sure on that) or a "Distinguished Depot Maintenance Medal"...but somebody has got to do the stuff you do or it doesn't get done.  That bullet that killed Bin Laden started out its tour of duty in theater coming off some ship most likely docked at Doha in Kuwait, was trucked to Camp Arifjan, where logistic guys took it off a pallet, put in an another log pac that got loaded on a plane for Afghanistan and was flown by MAC pilots that don't get to stick missles under the wings of their C5's.  Once in theater it was once again unload and shipped by yet more log guys until it finally ended up in that M4 in that SEALS hand and ultimately into that douchbag's brain.  Did you guys that got to go home for 2 weeks on mid tour R&R enjoy it?  Guess what, you can thank troops in the shaft for coordinating all of that "BS" involved in getting you in and out of theater with travel arrangements both to and from to ensure you got where you were supposed to.  Hopefully you didn't have a buddy killed, but if you did, it was those of us in the shaft that were charged with quickly, accurately and respectfully notifying their family.  Again, not glorious work, but stuff that needs to be done for the rest of the spear to work correctly.

So, if you served, where do you belong on the spear?  Remember there is no right or wrong answer here.  Every part of the spear is important.  Each has its role to play and relies on the others to do theirs as well in order for the opponent to be defeated.

When somebody asks me what I did in the war I can now just tell them "I gave them the shaft!!"