Friday, April 30, 2010

Idiots with Guns and the people who Love them

We just lost another person in the area to human stupidity being blamed on guns. Four 19 year olds were playing aroudn with a .38 revolver one of them had found and they were "loading and unloading it" when the one who had "found" the gun pointed it at his cousin and pulled the trigger Launching a round into his heart at point blank range. He claims he was just dry firing it. I am betting more on the Russian roulette against each other and this guy lost.

Now, one is dead and one is in jail charged with Criminally negligent homicide as he rightfully should. Local PD is still investigating to figure out how they got the gun in the first place and what really happened. Meanwhile, as is usual, the comments on the local TV station and the local paper are a mass of "it was an accident and could have happened to anyone, We should be mourning his loss and the cousin should not be charged for this accident." A few people have already pointed out that this was NO accident and that the shooter rightfully should be held responsible for his actions only to get ragged on by the relatives and friends for blaming this accident on the guy.

You know, the comment section of the local TV and paper are such good fodder for material until you realize, each of those posters has the same number of votes as you!

Actually I should point out that the local law and officials do not blame the gun, it is the family and friends that are saying it was an accident and the gun not the shooter.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Random Aircraft Sightings

So, this little hot rod is an Epic LT. Hard to tell it is an amateur built experimental huh?
PT6T turbo prop. Climbs at 3000feet per minute! Max Cruise of 350 Knots. Service ceiling of 28,000feet.

Not what I first think of when someone mentions kit built airplane.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

TV Update

So I posted about the latest of the TV appearances from work. Turns out the show is repeating tonight Wed 4/28 at 7PM Eastern.

AND, there is a crew in today filming for a commercial for one of our customers. I'll post on that when it comes out and is public domain. Interesting and fun crew and time today. Time was built in to today's testing schedule specifically for the film crews so we were not rushed to complete normal testing as well as filming. It should be interesting to see how they cull all the footage they shot into a 30 or 60 second commercial. Maybe they'll make an extended version for their website.

UPDATE: So, the launch will be this fall so no announcement soon. This footage will become part of a ~4minute promotional video and our part should be around a minute of that. Once that happens I'll put a link up to their promotional piece.

Also, go to watch the Weird or What episode on TV last night. It's a little different to see it on the big screen instead of a rough version on the laptop screen. Still funny and just for the record, I really don't need mysteries for life to not be boring.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Biased Reporting? Sloppy Reporting?

So, Newsleak has themselves an article about a gun dealer popped in Michigan and decide to use it as a way to smear gun owners, the militia movement, The Tea Party Movement and Oath Keepers all in one swath.

Just to get it out of the way,their layers of editorial oversight are immense.
when he attended a Michigan gun show and sold a Remington 12 caliber rifle with the serial number altered or obliterated

Oh yeah, I forgot they went after gunshows too. Just never hear of remington making 12" guns for the Navy.

They are quick to point out that there exists NO connection between the arrested FFL and the Hutaree Militia but smear them all together anyway.

The anti ATF passions were egged on by the National Rifle Association

Can't leave out attacking the NRA. This time saying the rise in militia and anti government groups is fueled by the NRA calling BATFEIEIO agents, "Jackbooted Thugs".

Now, some watchdog and gun control groups fear, those passions may be returning, helping to stoke an apparent resurgence of extremist militia and Patriot groups united in their zealous opposition to any firearms enforcement.
Yup, took the words straight from VPC, HCI, Brady whatever they call themselves today and added in the SPLC and their lies warning about anti gov't groups.

But the federal law enforcement official (who asked not to be identified because of the ongoing nature of the probe) said that Priest and the Hutarees "knew each other" and that the Gun Outfitters gun store had sold members of the group about five handguns and one semi-automatic rifle-all of them legal purchases.
So, we can't say who or how because it is an active investigation but we'll use the quote to smear everyone anyway. And they admit, the sales were legal. Five handguns and one rifle? Hardly an anti government arsenal. So a local dealer sold guns to local folks? That's a crime now?

There also seems to have been other reasons for the Hutarees to have taken an interest in Priest's case. Priests' 24 year old son, Jason, who had worked at Gun Outfitters between 2007 and last year, had been arrested in January 2009 after local police responded to an complaint of assault by a member of his girlfriend's family. They discovered in his apartment an arsenal of weapons that included an AR 15 semiautomatic rifle with no serial number, a suspected silencer, ammunition, a tactical vest with spare magazines, and camouflage clothing. Many of these items were packed into a black bag, referred to as a 'go bag' for combat, according to a sentencing memorandum filed by federal prosecutors filed last month.
Oh my, where to start with this one? THe FFL's son worked for him, was arrested and was no longer employed by him after arrest. BUT, here's the arsenal, one rifle,a "SUSPECTED" silencer ammo and a tac vest all stuffed into an ebil black bag. So now we have Assault Bags?

After Jason Priest was arrested, Hutaree leader Stone and his son Joshua approached Walter Priest and offered to break his son out of jail. Walter Priest rebuffed the offer, prosecutors have said.

So, the FFL flat out didn't want anything to do with the Hutaree's illegal activities and was not going to go to illegal lengths to help his son who really screwed the pooch. Sounds like a very dangerous man that needs to be removed from society for the good of the children.

I guess the headline of the piece says it all

Gun Dealer Case Sheds New Light On Hutaree Anti-government Hatred

So, a dealer who has nothing to do with the Hutaree is arrested on charges that have nothing to do with the Hutaree and back when the guys son is arrested the Hutaree's offer to spring him is flat turned down by the dealer all prove the anti government hatred?

Wow, just Wow.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Gun Safety in Schools

Finally it has come to pass that a state allows gun safety to be taught in schools.

As always, the bleeting begins,

"I personally don't think firearm safety has a place in the schools," Lori Haas, spokeswoman for the Virginia Center for Public Safety, told "That's up to the parents to teach that at home."
They can force schools to provide sex education using cucumbers and condoms and require them to teach that homosexuality is good but firearms safety has no place in schools and should be left up to parents? What the hell planet do these people live on?

The usual bias lives on as the article starts with,
Schoolchildren in Virginia who aren't old enough to pack their lunches yet will soon start learning about packing heat.
This program has NOTHING to do with carrying a firearm or even shooting a firearm. The legislation calls for the Eddie Eagle program which is strictly safety around guns.
The entire program is centered aroudn the very simple message,
STOP! Don't Touch. Leave the Area. Tell an Adult.
As I have heard multiple other places, it really should end with tell a responsible adult. As many incidents of late have been ignorant and irresponsible often drug dealing or using baby factories leaving a gun around to protect their stash when the child gets their hands on it.

I think this legislation is made of nothing other than WIN!

But I guess that doesn't count since I am part of the conspiracy of death as a gun owner and firearms safety instructor.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Oil Rig Trash

You know, there are good and bad people in every group.

Yesterday I posted a my thoughts on the loss of life and disaster that was Deepwater Horizon. Working a rig offshore is a tough job even in the best of conditions. Long periods away from the family, long hours, isolated on a rig out in the ocean not to mention just doing the work of drilling a well and all the associated skills required. Add to that the isolation and bad weather and lack of actual ground and shelter on that ground that would be associated with a land based rig. My hat is off to the folks that do this work. And we need more of them now more than ever to increase our domestic capacity for oil exploration, pumping and refining.

Last night I saw that while the rig was still burning at least two of the families of folks missing form the rig have already files lawsuits. Do these yahoos have ambulance chasers in the family or on speed dial?

The family of one of the missing crewmembers filed a lawsuit Thursday in the Eastern District Court of Louisiana against Transocean and global energy giant BP, which was leasing it. In the complaint, Natalie Roshto, wife of missing rig worker Shane Roshto, claims Transocean and BP violated numerous federal regulations and failed to provide a competent crew, among other allegations.
So, based on their complete lack of knowledge of what actually occurred, the lack of an official investigation of any sort and despite the FACT that the rig was inspected multiple times since it's arrival on station without ANY safety violations and despite the FACT that the crew and rig just received a safety award, the rig was operated in an unsafe and illegal manner that directly caused this incident? Worthy of a lawsuit?

Based on that same lack of any intelligent information I can safely accuse the missing workers on whose behalf these lawsuits were filed of intentionally causing this incident in search of a quick payoff for them and their families. Based on that the residents of the Gulf Coast should file a class action suit against the estates of these two for the environmental damage they caused in their search for easy money. Or maybe the whole incompetent crew thing is her way of saying she should be compensated for having to deal with an incompetent husband?

Sorry but this is just a huge load of money grubbing crap. Yes there are times that lawsuits are needed to force companies that do bad things and get people hurt or killed to straighten up their act. Yes there are times personal injury lawyers are actually needed to hold people accountable for their negligent actions that cause pain, injury or death to another. But come on folks, the rig isn't even cold and they're filing lawsuits already? How about some compassion for the folks lost and a competent investigation into possible causes of this tragedy before people start affixing blame?

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Oil Rig Bleg

It's no secret that of the many things we test at the Wind Tunnel, Oil Rigs are among them. Also, unless you've been living under a rock you know that the Deepwater Horizon blew up this week and sank today.

Well, it just so happens we are testing a rig this week so it is unfortunate timing to be doing this work while a rig collapses off shore with serious loss of life.

I pray for the safety of those still missing and their families but the pragmatist in me says there is little hope that more will be found alive. I suspect the blowout and explosion happened quickly and those missing were caught in the initial blast.

They Done put me on the TV

Previously, I had mentioned a crew shooting at the Wind Tunnel for an upcoming show on Discovery Channel. Well, it came and went and nobody let us know. I got multiple e-mails in my work inbox this morning from people saying they saw me on the show last night. I checked by Discovery Channel and of course it is not listed as getting replayed any time on the schedule. Part of the problem was we were looking for the wrong title. Turns out they renamed it "Weird or What". Us here would most likely fall into the or what category.

One of our grad students has it on his DVR and we are working at getting the clip from the production company.

Negative Ghostrider the pattern is full

Yesterday at lunch we had a quick visit from this guy. As we were walking out across the parking lot, he passed down the runway at tower level and high speed. Two of us raced for our respective cameras in hopes he would do it again or come in for a landing for close ups. Well, he made the pattern but slowed down, dirtied up (Landing gear and flaps out to land) and made a real approach. He just kissed the runway then popped back up, cleaned up and hit the throttle to accelerate down the runway. Once he got to the end, he pulled up and kicked left for a very sharp turn to stay in the pattern at high speed.

It made for a fun start to lunch. Unfortunately he didn't hang around for lunch at Freebirds like they normally do.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Um What?

Fox news has an article up about gun owners being upset with the NRA for not being aggressive enough.

The WTF moment for me was reading this,
But its strategies aren't aggressive or imaginative enough for some gun owners who want to openly carry holstered pistols in public places, or to exploit loopholes in state gun laws to purchase semi-automatic rifles.
So, gun owners are upset that the NRA isn't helping to exploit "loopholes in state gun laws" to purchase semi auto rifles?

Am I reading this wrong or are they accusing gun owners of trying to break non existent laws or or trying to purchase semi auto rifles (Legally in most states and free parts of the nation) or what?

I am confused.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Post Class AAR

So this morning was a Force on Force class. Mainly to iron out the bugs of some new scenarios for Polite Society.

In addition, two students from that other university in Texas wanted to come out and take some pictures and interview people for a project and potentially for their blog. Nice guys, I'll be interested to see the final result of their work.

Anyway, as for class, an important lessons reinforced, be aggressive enough soon enough. Many of the scenarios really needed the "potential victim" to react to the incoming unknown contacts soon enough and appropriately. Keep your head up people and be aware of your surroundings. If something doesn't seem right, PAY ATTENTION TO IT.

For some reason, people don't seem to want to do much FoF training. They will spend big bucks on a gun, maybe shoot it a little or even more rare, get some training on how to shoot better. A very small percentage seek advance training to improve their skills with their firearm. However, that is maybe 5% of a lethal encounter. The other 95% involves questions like.

Should I be shooting?
Is there something else I should be doing instead of shooting?
How do I recognize a situation that I would be better off avoiding?
What is the right branch to take in this situation?
Now that the shooting has ended, what next?
Has the shooting really ended?

These are by far not all the questions, just a few to stimulate discussions and learning.

FoF classes are really the closest that anyone could come to actually being in a lethal encounter without actually risking being killed. This gives the students the opportunity to experience all the physiological issues that can occur during a lethal encounter. Auditory exclusion, time distortion, degradation of fine motor skills, all the fun stuff that may or may not happen in an encounter. Even though this is a class and done with simunitions, airsoft or redguns, students often experience these symptoms as if it was real life encounters.

Why don't people want to learn and experience this? Your Thoughts?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Big WIN for Campus Carry

It seems that University of Colorado sucks at their attempt to ban students and staff from carrying even though it is specifically allowed by state law.

Eugene has the story.

Now we just need to carry that over to the rest of the country.

FBI Agent Selling Guns Illegally?

That is unpossible!

One of the many articles is here but I have a question about it.

His sentencing is pending but they say;
John Thomas Shipley, 40, could lose his career and land in prison when he is sentenced July 8.

COULD?!?!?!?!?! how could he COULD lose his career? They guy has been convicted of multiple felony counts and he COULD lose his career as a federal law enforcement agent? I can understand if he worked for BATFEIEIO that a conviction of multiple gun related felonies would enhance your career standings in that agency but the FBI?

Add to that the fact that he presented himself as an FBI agent in some of his dealings and what ultimately lead to his capture was tracing a .50 that he sold to Mexican Drug Dealers that was used in a shootout. So that's where the 90% of guns used by the cartels is coming from in the US. Here all this time I was told it was all those damn gun shows in Texas when it turns out to be rouge federal agents supplying them with guns.

Just read the indictment for an idea of the crap this guy pulled. He'll probably get probation in light of "His honorable service to his country as a federal agent" when what he deserves is to be thrown under the jail and forgotten about for abusing his authority and tarnishing the name and reputation of the FBI.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Stoopid, It Hurts

Could someone explain to me how the addition of metal detectors at the doors to the state capitol building could have had an effect on a guy who shot his gun up into the air outside the capitol?

The article at KXAN explains some of it but I still don't get it.

At least Governor Good Hair voted against it. Most of the time he is a friend but every now and then he steps in it and pushes the TTC or other shenanigans that just really aggravate me.

I'm thinking the real money quote is;
The State Preservation Board, in a 5-1 vote, approved a package of security upgrades suggested by the Department of Public Safety in a closed-door session this morning.
The whole closed door crap really bothers me. It is our capitol and our tax dollars they are wasting so the meeting should have been a violation of the Open Meetings Act.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Loose Ammo KABOOM

It's hard to imagine but one of the instructors I worked with this weekend had a KABOOM during the week. From a box of ammo sitting on the table!


These are 250 round bulk packs of Federal .45ACP practice ammo. He had moved them out to the table to load up and bring to class and they had been sitting on the table for a couple days.
As he explained it, he was in the home office and his wife was loading the dishwasher when he heard a loud bang and thought something had collapsed in the Kitchen.

He came running out to find his wife most disturbed and perturbed and the box and shredded cardboard all over the room and a new set of divots in the sheet rock. He had to dig teh primer out of the wall.

He contacted Federal and they sent a prepaid label for him to send the box of ammo back to them for analysis. No interest in the other 1750 rounds he has of this stuff. It is interesting that it went off sitting on the table. Most times I would be skeptical but I trust this guy implicitly and if he says it was sitting on the table, I believe him.

More when he lets me know what Federal has to say about it.


Just got e-mail from the victim. Seems Federal called him and said they determined there was a bullet shaped depression in the primer despite the fact that most of the primer was still in the wallboard when the ammo was sent back. Bottom line, they are sending replacement ammo and dropping the matter.

All rights to any photos reserved to the original author. Duplication and distribution prohibited. TXGunGeek was a vewy bad boy to post them.

Green Ags and Hamm

Pearls Before Swine


Range Day AAR

Basic Pistol 1
70% of the class were women ranging in age from 22 to 64. So much for the old angry white guy myth.

Really this was a fun class. everyone shot well and had a good time. By the time it was over everyone had the chance to shoot everything from a Browning BuckMark .22 to a Kimber Custom in .45 as well as a K19 and Colt King Cobra. We very quickly pushed people form shooting the large rectangular plates up close to 6" plates at 15 yards. Everyone was hitting them and about half the class had never shot a gun before.

Among the instructors who came out to help was Howard Nemerov. It is always a pleasure to see and teach with him.

Also present was an instructor who had a quite the exciting week. He had a round go off inside the factory carton while sitting on the table at his house!! That will be another post as I don't have the pictures on this computer.

Then there is the cow. Her name is Abbey. I brought her home to the K- ranch from the A-Zone range to add to our herd. Again, pictures are still on the camera, not on this PC so that will be another post.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

One More Reason

To NEVER fly commercial again.

So Spirit Airlines has decided to start charging people FOR CARRY ON LUGGAGE!!!!!!!

Read that carefully again, now that they charge for checked baggage, they are now going to charge for you to carry on a bag.

I'm just waiting for the oxygen fee if you want to breath during the flight. This has gotten ridiculous.

Beat Cops ROCK!!

Last Friday a convenience store clerk was ruthlessly murdered when two subhuman pieces of crap thought that the few dollars they could get was worth more than a mans life. Turns out that the suspect descriptions based on video matched that of an earlier robbery at another station not far away.
Then a traffic cop doing his thing makes a traffic stop and ends up with the murderers and a third piece of shit from another home invasion robbery in custody when a fourth walked or drove up and got into it with officers and was arrested as well. Turns out all four are connected to the earlier robberies.

The clerk was living the American Dream. He had come here in search of employment and was working an honest job and sending the money back home to support his wife and kids in hopes of bringing them here one day. This guy had a strong faith and not only believed in the American Dream, he was Living it until these two wastes of my oxygen decided to kill him.

While detectives had clues and these guys names were already on their minds, it took a beat cop to take them off the street.

BTW, one of them was due to start "House Arrest" as a sentence for previous robbery conviction in a few days. He shouldn't have been out on the street to begin with but that is a rant for another day.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

On Burnout

A Great Friend has a case of Burn Out. I can sympathize.

I spent darn near 20 years in the Semiconductor Industry working at everything from operator to product specialist. A number of those years were spent as a road whore. Yup that was the right choice of words. I was paid to travel and service customers. At one point I spent 8 months on the road in and out of country and saw misbeHaven a total of two weeks. Not all at one time though, a weekend here and there and four days @ Christmas then back on the road. That was loads of not fun.

Around then, misbeHaven got an offer for a position that was too big personally and professionally to pass up. Problem was, that meant moving and there was no semiconductor industry here. That meant a job and career change. Unfortunately, that also meant a pay cut for me. So, she made the move and we lived apart like we did when we first got married. Finally it came time for me to make the move. I will save the story about the tornado that hit our apartment while we were moving for another post.

I started out selling Toyota's at the local dealer. Man did I suck at that. I did get to test drive the snot out of the new Tundra's before they came out though and that was a hoot. I just couldn't do the deed to get deals to close. Eventually all the resumes and applications I had put out there started to pay off with an interview at the A&M Wind Tunnel. I ended up taking about a 65% or so pay cut but have not been happier at work in a very long time. I actually enjoy getting up and going to work now. Flushing the years in semiconductor process equipment and having to learn things all over again was a bit of a challenge but it was the right thing to do for a number of reasons.

This all came to a head for me last week when we had a tour of engineers from a customer come through to learn about the testing we do. I gave the tour and at the end three different engineers commented that it was the best tour they had had in their collection of tours on campus. One asked how much I liked my job because is showed during the tour. It dawned on my that I really did enjoy work. I explained that in making the change out of the semiconductor industry that I now made less money but I enjoyed the variety of work that I do and the rather interesting/odd/fun things that we get to test and I work with a group of folks that like to have fun at work. Hence the last post.

Burnout sucks and until you get through it and into the recovery side. But once you do it can be a really good thing.