Thursday, December 24, 2009

Holiday Greetings

Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of my readers.

As I coast into the final days of 2009, I've been reflecting on all of the things that I have to be thankful for.

I have several new friends. I have introduced a few more people to shooting, including all three of my children. I was able to pay off some debt and improve my financial situation, even though I had to take a pay cut earlier this year. My youngest child was just accepted to college for next year. My wife still loves me. :)

The list could be much longer.

But, all that really matters is this: I have employment, food, clothing, and shelter. Everything else is gravy.

If you know of someone who is struggling these Holidays, who may not have the basics covered, help them out in any way that you can. Even if the only help that they will accept is your thoughts and prayers. That may be all that they need. Pray for our Military, who are doing tough work in dangerous places. Pray for their families here back home.

Keep your loved ones close to you. Reach out to friends and neighbors. And, share your love with the people you meet. Be safe in your travels. May the King of kings and Lord of lords protect you, and bless you, and keep you close, as we celebrate Him.



Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Amazing Essay 2

“All laws which are repugnant to the Constitution are null and void.”

— SCOTUS Chief Justice John Marshall, Marbury v. Madison, 1803

Coordinated Illumination hits another one out of the park in an essay entitled "When the Gov't is Repugnant to the Constitution". An excerpt:
"The communist take over of my country, "the Coup", is now complete. Having "won", the commisars expect and demand that we accept their Coup and lick their boots and follow their laws. Laws repugnant to our Constitution and our way of life. The attack on America continues and accelerates. Every month brings new amazing outrages. The aim of a communist takeover is a defeated people dependent upon the state. Taxes and regulations that kill our businesses and reduce us and our children to poverty.
They Won, they say. Their laws and bureacracies are in place and will not be repealed within the current system. Modified and adjusted, maybe; enlarged and expanded, probably. But we will never go back to being America. The "change" that was promised; it's better pronounced "chains"."



Monday, December 21, 2009

What's for dessert?

We had a few friends over for dinner tonight. Nothing special, just conversation and snowball fights, when the subject of dessert came up. As in, "What's for dessert?"

I hadn't planned for dessert. However, being fearless in the kitchen, I tossed out "How about chocolate cream pie or maybe chocolate mousse?" I got a table full of head nods...

I've never made a chocolate mousse before. I mean, sure, I've seen it done. I know the basic concept. Heck, Alton Brown can do it. Why not?

So, while the teens went out to play in the snow, I hopped onto the Internet to look up recipes since Joy of Cooking was rather sparse in the mousse department. Ah, well. Seven web sites and ten recipes later, I didn't find anything that I thought would work for my available time and ingredients. So, I decided to craft my own.

Here it is:

Quick and Rich Chocolate Mousse
Total prep time, 30 minutes

12 ounces Heavy Whipping cream
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp Butter
4 oz Dark Chocolate (70% or greater), shaved, ground, or chopped into small pieces.
4 oz Toll house morsels (or you can just use 8 oz of Toll house morsels instead)
2 Large eggs, separated into whites and yolks
2 Tbsp Amaretto
Rounded 1/4c finely granulated sugar
scant ¼ tsp cream of tartar

Nested mixing bowls for an ice bath

Whip egg whites and cream of tartar until they form soft peaks, then gradually add sugar, while continuing to whip, until thoroughly incorporated and mixture forms stiff peaks and has a glossy sheen.

In Medium saucepan over medium heat, Heat one half of the cream, the salt, and the vanilla to a simmer. Add the chocolate and butter into it and whisk thoroughly until chocolate is melted. DO NOT BOIL. Immediately remove from heat and whisk the egg yolks one at a time into the mixture, blending completely before adding the next. Add Amaretto and mix thoroughly, and then transfer to a mixing bowl floating in an ice bath. Whip using electric hand mixer while adding remaining cream until all cream is added and chocolate mixture forms firm peaks and valleys.

Gently fold whites into chocolate until no streaks are visible, and then chill for 2 hours, covered, before serving.

Serve in martini glass topped with whatever suits your fancy.
4 ounces Heavy Whipping Cream
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp granulated sugar

Whip together until stiff peaks form and top mousse with it.

This dessert is very rich. Depending on your tolerance for decadence, this recipe will yield anywhere from one to twelve servings. :)

The only problem I had with the recipe was that it never made it into the 'fridge to chill. It was GONE as soon as it hit the serving glasses. Hopefully yours will last a little longer. Or not. Enjoy!



EDIT: Daughter corrects me and says that the mousse was Sharon's idea (a friend), not mine...oh, well. It still rocked. :)

2010 Elections?

What 2010 elections?

One has to wonder just what the Democrats in Congress are playing at. Any sane and rational person knows that actions have consequences. Most Congress Critters have heard from their constituency and, unless in complete denial, are aware that Health Care Reform is wildly unpopular "back home".

Yet, they voted for it anyway.

Which leads me to believe that they think this vote is far enough away from the 2010 elections that the animosity towards them for this vote will have died down (and, that their usual vote buying, voter fraud, and poll intimidation tactics will suffice). Or, they know that this vote doesn't affect their re-elections in 2010 because there won't be any.

I have been saying this for months now. I wonder if anybody else is listening? Have we reached the point in the process where our Republic/Democracy is reduced to "one man, one vote, one time"? Having elected Maoists, Marxists, Leninists, and Fascists (aka "Progressives") to office, and their "reforms" to the system under the guise of a National Socialism being put into action, have we had our "one vote" already? If so, what's next? Or, as quoted here: "When Democracy becomes Tyranny, I STILL get to vote!"

Congressional Leaders: Be careful what you wish for. You may just get the full measure and eventual outcome of the policies that you champion. History is replete with failed regimes that attempted to do what you are now trying. History's pages are well-bloodied with the results of power grabs against the citizens. It generally doesn't end well for those who begin this cycle. You have been warned not to proceed down this path by the citizens in your states and districts.

You persisted anyway.

May the God you don't believe in save the soul you don't believe you have...


Sunday, December 20, 2009

Freedom's death knell?

I am watching C-SPAN2 right now.

The Senate is bloviating towards a 1:00 AM Showdown with the American Taxpayer. At issue is whether the Democrats will be able to muster 60 arm-twisted, bought, bribed, threatened, and cowed Senators to vote to end debate on the Health Care monstrosity.

It appears that Sen. Reid and the President have successfully bullied enough Senators to pass this bill. This bill, which will hand over to FedGov unconstitutional control over the populace, and take over 1/6th of the economy.

The most recent polls show at least 57% of the populace is opposed to this reform. So, in their rush to consolidate their power, the Democrats have declared that the citizen's voice doesn't matter any longer. They are just doing something for their own good, don't you know... The citizen is the least important part of this process. The citizen, who pays the bills through taxes, is only a nuisance to be ignored and/or controlled.

"Whenever the legislators endeavor to take away and destroy the property of the people, or to reduce them to slavery under arbitrary power, they put themselves into a state of war with the people, who are thereupon absolved from any further obedience."
-- John Locke, 1690

I believe that I will stand Absolved. The legislature has declared war on Liberty and Freedom and the citizens who believe in these ideals. It is now only a matter of time before this symbolic war on the citizens and taxpayers becomes a real war.

May God have mercy on our Country and our souls.


Friday, December 18, 2009

Global Warming...

Welcome to the new, warmer, climatically-enhanced winter. It looks like my part of the US is bracing for significant snowfall, and earlier in the season than normal.

A normal winter storm, if it drops any snow at all, will bring 2"-4" of the wonderful white stuff. Thanks to Al Gore's Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Absurdia(c), we are expecting between 8" and 18" of snow this time. This is only two short weeks after the last storm dropped 4+" on us.

If we get any warmer, the next storm might be a rip-roaring blizzard!

Thanks Al!



Thursday, December 17, 2009

An amazing essay

I came across "Coordinated Illumination" in my sitemeter statistics and went over there to check it out. What I found was a series of amazing essays which highlight the true nature of the plight that our country is currently in, especially THIS one. Go. Read.

I am adding the page to my blogroll. You should too.



Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Freedom Fighters

If you are an American, you are the beneficiary of the efforts of Freedom Fighters. This is also true of any we may have liberated throughout our history, but is definitely true for my Countrymen.

Freedom fighters come in all guises. They fight the battle in many ways. The most obvious are the warriors. They directly put their lives on the line and are willing to sacrifice their all for the sake of Liberty. If you know a warrior, shake their hand and offer thanks. Make a donation to a charity that assists wounded warriors. Write a letter to a soldier on deployment. Help their family back home. They are making direct and obvious sacrifices for your freedom and should be given thanks.

Less obvious than the warriors in the battle for your Liberty are those who are advocates for Freedom, using the media as their battlefield. These people deserve your prayers and support while they fight the battles loudly and publicly on our public airwaves and through alternative media like blogs, webchats, podcasts, and new media articles.

Today I am writing asking for your support of one such Freedom Fighter. In the battle for our Liberty, this man is on the front lines daily. Whether you believe in his approach to the problem or prefer a different track to the same goal, consider that he is one of us in the battle to preserve and defend our Constitutional Liberties. The Founders pledged their Lives, Fortunes, and their Sacred Honor to the cause. If you believe that Liberty is a cause worthy of support, you owe it to Her and to yourself to consider helping out. Go Here for additional information.

Mike, I salute you.



At what point?

At what point should someone who has sworn an oath to protect and defend the Constitution, yet whose actions have been in direct contravention of that oath, be held to account and recalled?

Are we there yet?



Monday, December 14, 2009


Recently, there has been some media interest in firearms deaths at the hands of Carry Permit holders. The sensational nature of the reports would lead one to believe that people who own firearms are reckless, crazy, and liable to go off at any moment and begin mowing down unsuspecting citizens in a fit of rage.

Since the thread that holds these reports together is purportedly the firearm itself, I delved deep into government statistics on actual firearms-related deaths. Then, I compared these deaths to the total of all deaths in the United States, using 2006 data from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) WISQARS database query system, located here. The year 2006 was chosen as it is the most current data available that is searchable in the database.

Without further ado, here are the top 20 Leading Causes of Death in the Unites States:

1. Heart Disease-------------------- 631,636
2. Malignant Neoplasms-(Cancer)--- 559,888
3. Cerebro-vascular-(Stroke)---- 137,119
4. Chronic Low-Respiratory Disease-- 124,584
5. Diabetes Mellitus---------------- 72,449
6. Alzheimer's Disease-------------- 72,432
7. Influenza and Pneumonia---------- 56,326
8. Nephritis---(Kidney Disease)------- 45,344
9. Motor Vehicle Accidents---------- 43,664
10. Septicemia----------------------- 34,234

Pause here to consider that firearms deaths are not even in the top ten leading causes of death in the United States. At 30,316 aggregate (Suicides, Homicides, and Accidents), firearms-related deaths would place 11th overall. However, it is worth noting that the firearms-related deaths are broken down by the CDC into the above 3 categories for a reason. When we think of firearms-related deaths, most people think of Homicides and Accidents. For the sake of clarity, I will break down the remaining 10 categories for you and let you draw your own conclusions. Also, for clarity, I have broken down "Unintentional Injury", "Suicide", and "Homicide" to show where firearms-related deaths fall on the spectrum.

Note- This is where the "liars with statistics" usually enter the following: (Total Suicides - All causes - 33,300 and Total firearms-related deaths - All types - 30,316). See the rest of the table for the real breakdown.

11. Liver Disease--------------------- 27,555
12. Accidental Poisonings------------- 27,531
13. Hypertension---------------------- 23,855
14. Accidental Falls------------------ 20,823
15. Parkinson's Disease--------------- 19,556
16. Pneumonitis----------------------- 16,887
17. Suicide by firearm---------------- 16,883
18. Suicide by other means------------ 16,417
19. Perinatal Period------------------ 14,442
20. Benign Neoplasms------------------ 14,122

So where are Homicides? In the aggregate, they would fall between Parkinson's Disease and Pneumonitis at 18,573. But, like suicides I broke that category down so I could get to the homicides-by-firearm. Here is the rest of the list:

21. Aortic Aneurysm------------------- 13,238
22. Homicide by Firearm -------------- 12,791
23. HIV------------------------------- 12,113
24. Unspecified Accidental Injuries--- 6,345
25. Suffocation-(Accidental)---------- 5,912
26. Homicides non-firearms------------ 5,782

Accidental deaths by firearm totaled 642, or 16th overall on the "Accidental causes of death" statistics. More people died in pedestrian fatalities (1,141) and machinery accidents (740).

Given the hysterical nature of the Media reports relating to "gun violence", "Firearm deaths", and "Shooting Deaths" reported regularly, one could conclude that the proper exercise of your Second Amendment rights places you and those around you at great risk of harm. Nothing could be further from the truth.

In fact, you are placing yourself more at risk by properly eating that plate of Chicken Alfredo, or driving to the range, than you are from properly using that firearm when you get there.



Four wheeled fun

This past weekend I went karting with my son and daughter. My girl had been pestering me to go for a few weeks, ever since she went with a "guy friend" of hers. I have been racing before, and knew it would be a lot of fun, but didn't want to spend money that was not in the budget.

Well, Saints be praised, I got a small bonus (really a return of the pay cut I took earlier in the year). So, Saturday night we braved the cold (well, cold for Virginia at 33F) and went to the indoor kart track in Fredericksburg and did some racing.

My daughter was excited that "I did so well for my first time out", and I was wondering which corners I was losing so much time in. Different standards, I guess...

I think I might have the racing line worked out for the track now. Maybe with a few adjustments, I can recover the second per lap that she is beating me by. I already know that I can carry more speed through the turn onto the pit straight if I line up the apex time!

Click for full picture
Oldest son leading the group into the turn on the yellow, daughter is #4

Click for full picture
Me (#18) stuck behind traffic on the yellow flag

I plan to do this again. It is a really good time, and not too expensive for today's world, with liability costs and gasoline and all being so expensive (about $18 per race with membership). Racing will get the heart rate up and the adrenaline flowing and maybe let you connect with your kids a little bit more.

Maybe next time I'll prove to the girl that I've still got it... :)



Friday, December 11, 2009

If we want to take our country back

from the moneyed special interests, THIS is a good way to begin.

I much prefer the soap box and the ballot box to the final option for redress of grievances, the cartridge box. It is my sincerest hope that we never have to use that third option in our country ever again. Let's start this process by cleaning house next year. My Congressman is a good man, and a conservative. But, I will vote him out on principle if that is what it takes to get the People's House back under control of the People.



Thursday, December 10, 2009

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

When do the citizens stand up

...and say "Enough!"?

Carbon Dioxide as a pollutant? For real?

Try to heat your home, cook a meal, or go to work without producing it. Try calling your Congress-critter a spineless, Statist weasel without producing it.

Try breathing without producing it.

Now tell me you are OK with the EPA regulating it.



Denying reality

Tonight, our Enlightened Dear Leader, The Won, The Light-bringer Himself plans to appear before his adoring subjects on a national telecast. He intends to inform us that our situation is grim, but that it could be worse. After all, he has "Saved" millions of jobs through his enlightened actions in interposing the Leviathan between the citizens and the evil corporations which employ them.

Then he will tell us that we must plunder the productive among us, in order to provide for the unproductive the ability to continue in sloth and lethargy. Because it is our duty to them.

Finally, he will implore us to act against rational self-interest and support the Leviathan takeover of Health Care and Carbon-producing activities. For the betterment of the world...and then he will go collect his Cracker Jack award for his non-action in promising to bring peace to the world by destroying the very gatekeeper of peace itself, our country.

The world will feel better when it is enslaved to the despots who wish us gone, our lamp of Liberty extinguished, our shores just another dreary destination on the road to serfdom.

Are they kidding?


The enemy is inside the gates, inside the very halls of our revered institutions. They have perverted reality and are telling us that War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength. They have perverted the concept of war to one where we use force to mold societies to liking us more. They have ensured that our system of taxation benefits only a very select few, and that the rest of us are shackled to a debt our grandchildren can never hope to repay, to countries whose interests are not our own. They have fundamentally altered the meaning of education to ensure that our highly sexualized college graduates are barely competent enough to become consumers and clerks, and are dependent upon Leviathan for everything else.

And we let them do it to us, because we have allowed them to take over the roles of our educators, bankers, communicators, manufacturers, and parents. Shame on us. When this house of cards collapses, they will then take on the role of jailer over anybody who dissents or resists. Their policies are not about improving anything. They are about usurping power and control over you and your actions.

There are reports out on the fringes of the tinfoil hat crowd that Dear Reader is mobilizing troops and redeploying them under USNORTHCOM. In anticipation of civil unrest scheduled (yes, scheduled) to occur early next year when the collapse of the dollar is announced. In so doing, the theory goes, the Republic will be saved from civil war because of overwhelming force deployed on the part of Government against its own people. Oh, and coincidentally, the declaration of Martial Law will suspend the 2010 elections, ensuring that the current Mandarins in Babylon-by-the-Potomac will remain in their seats of power.

Is this what you want?

If not, what are you going to do about it?



Monday, December 7, 2009

December 7

Today marks the anniversaries of two very important events in my history. It marks the anniversary of our reluctant entry into World War 2, by way of a dawn attack by the Imperial Japanese Navy on our naval forces resting at Pearl Harbor. It is also the anniversary of the birth of my oldest son.

Other people will have much more eloquent things to say about Pearl Harbor and War and the nature of retributive justice. So I'll let them say them today.

I just want to say: Happy Birthday, Son. I love you.


Sunday, December 6, 2009


So, I am at the range yesterday with some friends. I have my eyes and ears on and have just stepped up to the line with my EvilBlackRifle to loose a few rounds. As I lean into the shot, my phone contacts the table in such a way as to: "Press OK to Unlock", "Press Contacts", Select my sister in California, hit "Send"...

Her husband answers the phone to the sound of gunfire erupting...

Lots of gunfire...

Followed by an eerie silence as the entire line reloaded (completely coincidentally), and then my phone shuts off.

On my way to the restaurant after the range session, I fish my phone out of my pocket to call one of our group and notice that I have a recent call to my sister (?!??), and I redial her.

Her husband answers and asks me if I am OK...

Oops... :)

I really should call them more often!



Saturday, December 5, 2009

NoVa Blogmeet recap

The theme today was "Semper Gumby".

The day dawned cloudy with snow in the forecast. A couple of us were planning to hit the range around lunch time. Me, so that I could test-fire my rifles and ensure that they were working properly. OldNFO, and Orangeneck, just because shooting is fun.

Our original plan was to head to FXRGC (an outdoor range) to do the shooting and maybe take a few pictures. On the way to the range however, NFO called me to let me know that it had closed early due to the weather. So...we changed plans.

Rather than scrub the shooting session, we agreed to go to Fairfax and hit the mother hive instead. NRA Headquarters. We had a leisurely stroll through the excellent National Firearms Museum (free entry!), then to their 50 yard indoor range. The museum is a must-see if you like guns and are ever in the northern Virginia area. The range is also very nice and is run by true professionals.

Although we encountered a bit of traffic on the way to the restaurant, and I missed my turn in the snow in the dark, we got to Sweetwater Tavern just a little behind schedule. Waiting there already was New Jovian Thunderbolt, and reader "Stretch". (Sorry we were a little late, guys.) We had outstanding micro-brewed beer (but maybe not as good as the legendary Atomic Ale), wonderful food, and good conversation. Waitress Corey was entertaining and she kept us fed and watered, even traded jokes with us. "There were these 2 blondes..." :D

JayG and FarmGirl joined us briefly by phone, but we decided not to call Breda while she was at work. Maybe next time. :) Orangeneck gets the prize for traveling furthest to attend, coming down from New York. Your prize is coming in the mail. :)

Thank you to T-Bolt for the gift. I promise to save them for the Zombie Horde Invasion.

I plan on doing this again after the holidays. I am looking forward to the next one. Hope to meet up with the rest of you soon.



Friday, December 4, 2009

NoVa Blogmeet tomorrow

Bloggers, Readers, Family, Friends, assorted hangers-on are all welcome. Come on down, all 9 of you.

Sweetwater Tavern
Sterling, VA

5:00 PM for beer and food

Directions HERE



Thursday, December 3, 2009

Warning: Journalists live here!

Caleb at Gun Nuts Media has turned the tables on the Herald-Times' publication of the Indiana CWP database. By publishing a database of his own, including interactive map, Bloomington residents can avoid the local "Authorized Journalists" in town.

Well done!



Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Green is the new red

Way back when, a committed Communist was referred to as a "Tomato". This was because they were red on the outside, and red on the inside.

Nowadays, while we still have "Tomatoes", the committed Communist is more likely a member of the environmental movement. Thus, has been coined a new term. Watermelon.

Beneath the surface of the climate debate lies an ugly truth. It is not about saving the planet. It never has been. It is about control, and power over people's lives in the name of some "greater good". It is about power which THEY wish to wield.

Do not be blinded by the feel-good rhetoric. They want to disarm you and make you obey. They want to become eco-mandarins (like Al Gore), telling you what you can and cannot do, make, or consume. All the while they will be living in their mansions, being driven in their armored SUVs and Limos, and flying to the next conference on a private jet.

Watermelons. Because Green is the new Red.



New Shooter and Lube Fail

This past Thanksgiving, I visited my sister and her family. Dinner was an amazing meal of deep-fried turkey, stuffing, various casseroles and all of the traditional "fixin's" with outstanding homemade pie for dessert.

As part of the weekend, I had promised to take my brother-in-law, nieces and nephews, and my kids to the range. So, I lugged some of my guns down to her house and on Friday we went shooting.

Friday morning began with a complete discussion on the Four Rules, as well as a discussion on range status and safety procedures. Since my BIL and nephew haven't done much (if any) shooting, I wanted to ensure that the time there would be fun. So, in addition to paper targets, we brought along some plastic bottles and a box of clay pigeons.

Arriving at the range, we set up the gear at several tables and reviewed safety one last time. There were some people already there, and it looked like we might have an issue as there was nobody obviously managing safety. I had a brief discussion with the other shooters, let them know that I had neophytes with me and that I would jump into the RSO role to control the range for our group. They agreed and so I did.

After setting up targets and picking out which gun each person was going to start out with, I confirmed our ready status with the line, got thumbs up all the way down, and called "Range Hot". Our experienced shooters got to get some fun time plinking and target shooting, but the real joy was to have my nephew and BIL each get these HUGE grins on their faces after shooting the guns for the first time. I had started out the nephew on the AR, and he did very well, even hitting some clays set up at 100 yds from the offhand position. The boy is a natural.

Brother-in-Law got to start out on the 45, and his form was good. Next he got to shoot the LR-308 and was doing an incredible job of putting the bullet right on target. I watched as he picked out a clay on the berm, lined up, and turned it to powder. I thought the grin he had was going to strain something! It was HUGE! New shooters are more fun than puling the trigger myself sometimes. :)

After we had been shooting for a while, both of the rifles began to malfunction. They would eject just fine, but would fail-to-feed with a bolt over-ride. As it was nearing the end of the session, we agreed to pack up (it was also 35F with a strong wind so we were COLD!), and I would check the guns out when I got back home.

Upon breaking down the rifles, it was obvious that I had experienced a lube failure. Both guns had been throughly cleaned with Hoppes prior to shooting, then lubricated with Break Free CLP (per the manual). Clearly this was inadequate. Below you can see the bolt from the AR, and as you can see, there is no lube residue left on the bolt or carrier.

I did a complete tear-down of the rifles looking for any damage (none found) and commenced to cleaning. After cleaning the rifles, I used a hi-temp grease instead of CLP for the bolts and carriers. I plan to shoot again this Saturday to see if it fares better. The forecast is for similar conditions as we had over Thanksgiving (cold and windy, possible precipitation) so I should be able to determine if this is a better approach for these conditions.

I hope you had as good a Thanksgiving weekend as I did. I look forward to meeting up with you at the NoVa Blogmeet this Saturday



FTC Disclosure: I am not affiliated with, nor do I derive compensation from, any manufacturers or vendors of any of the products listed. If I use it, it is because I like it. Now, go pull the wings off of some flies or something.