Saturday, December 03, 2011

Slow(er) blogging likely

My already reduced posting pace may be getting slower for some time to come. Outside of being in the midst of the holiday season (My aching wallet!), yesterday was the culmination of a quest that has lasted several years--I have found gainful employment in the private sector and have turned in my notice at my government job! Yes, one less leach siphoning off the body public--at least until they hire a replacement.

I took the job many years ago, when the group I worked for generally flew below the notice of those in the state's seat of power and was largely self-funding (through the sale of tickets to what is essentially a tourist attraction owned by the government). As time passed, the nature of the funding largely changed, and with government money came the inevitable government strings--to the point that, about 3 years ago, I found myself unwilling transferred from those for whom I had always worked for to another group, peopled in large part by idiots who did not care if they gave good service or not. (In other words, typical government employees.)

The new job is in a very different area of endeavor. For me, it's a promotion, a pay raise, somewhat better benefits, a loss of a retirement plan (hey, no pain, no gain), more responsibility and a much nicer environment to work in. I get an office to myself!

I'm currently working my notice, and will shortly be transitioning to the new employer. That means some long hours are in store, my family obligations will be slighted and so on. Slower blogging will be a part of that situation.

However, I'm really enthused about this move. It always felt funny to be against big government yet be a part of it. Now, I'm going to be able to bellow loud and long about it, and not feel a little like a hypocrite.

Just as soon a I get settled in, get my feet under me and get things organized.

(Take a pass on the political baggage associated with the song and you'll get what I mean.)

Free money!

No, not the kind currently being generated by central banks the world over. This kind comes the old-fashioned way--extracted from the citizenry for a "crime" that effects no one but the offender.

Like they say, "Click it or help close the budget gap"...or something along those lines.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

California East is a bit less California starting tomorrow

And it's about freaking time that North Carolina's mish-mash of self-defense laws were normalized.

Changes to the state’s Castle Doctrine Law that take effect Thursday do not require people to run before they fight back with a gun. The law expands the use of reasonable deadly force to include cars and workplaces if a person under attack fears imminent death or serious bodily harm.

And in a "sorta" nod to the recent passage of an act to mandate national recognition of concealed carry licenses in the same way that we not recognize drivers licenses, North Carolina will also recognize your concealed carry permit no matter what state you got it in--and no matter whether or not that state recognizes ours.

Now, if we can get the silliness involving carrying during "declared emergencies" (like snow storms) and carrying in places where alcohol is consumed addressed, we'll be really on the road to normalizing things. Dare I hope for carry on school grounds, a la our neighbor Virginia?

Be still my beating heart!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Some idiots have entirely too much time on their hands

(Via The Email List That Shall Remain Nameless)

Locked up in the bowels of the medical faculty building here and accessible to only a handful of scientists lies a man-made flu virus that could change world history if it were ever set free.

The virus is an H5N1 avian influenza strain that has been genetically altered and is now easily transmissible between ferrets, the animals that most closely mimic the human response to flu. Scientists believe it's likely that the pathogen, if it emerged in nature or were released, would trigger an influenza pandemic, quite possibly with many millions of deaths.

While I'm all for science and scientific research, just what in the hell is is going through your mind that leads you to create something like this? Don't tell me that you had to create the monster in order to kill it; because my credibility just doesn't stretch that far.

I obviously don't have all the details, and I probably don't have 1/100th the education I'd need to understand them if I did. But based on what I'm reading, this guy and his disease both need to be locked up in a deep, dark hole. Together. Overly-educated, irresponsible fool. People like this could quite literally be the death of us all.

And to make it worse, you can't get the jinn back in the bottle now.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Santa and Machine Guns?

I am so there!

AAR--the Hickory Gun Show, Son and Old Buddy (Look! A new character!) journeyed to Hickory, NC to hit the Hickory Gun Show. Even though it meant getting up early on a Sunday (an unnatural act for me if there ever was one) and driving 90 minutes, it was worth it.

Because I got 60 rounds of 6.5 x 53R ammo for my Dad's Dutch Mannlicher! Hens' teeth are more common. 40 rounds is original military Berdan primed nasty old corrosive stuff, 20 rounds is new (-ish) production Boxer primed. I'm hoping the old stuff will generate useable brass when disassembled. Even if it is Berdan, it can be reloaded if you're willing to go through the trouble. And if the brass is useable. We'll see how it goes.

I'm willing to do it for this gun. Not just because it was my Dad's, but because of the story behind it. Somewhere in Europe during World War II, that gun was used to kill a GI, one of the men in my Dad's unit. My Dad killed the guy using it and relieved him of the gun, then toted the thing around until he could get it back home. So this gun comes with some amazing baggage both good and bad.

The wood is banged up, the bore is pitted beyond belief, but the few times I've been able to shoot it it has been highly accurate and quite pleasant to shoot.

But that's neither here nor there. I'd keep this gun without a single piece of useable brass or a round of ammunition. The reason is the same reason I like old guns--it has a story. And unlike so many of the old guns I own, I know this gun's story. And that is precious beyond words.

I was also fortunate enough to pick up an holster for J frame that needed one from a local source I didn't know was out there, MTR Custom Leather. Nothing groundbreaking in terms of design or features, just a good solid holster at a good price. This one is for having the J-frame handy when around the house, should I feel the need.

So all that, plus an excellent burger for lunch. Made for a pretty good day.