Saturday, December 22, 2012

Goofy Internet

First, I apologise for the crappy soundtrack which inundates the website today ( and for the past week).  It's part of the  post which addressed the Portland, Oregon Mall Shooting.  I can't stop it, so let it go for a couple of more days and it will eventually archive its ass out of here.

Second, I note that the both the internet and cell-phone texts seem to be less than 100% reliable.  I don't know why this is.  I'm just saying that if you're having problems with these two communications modes (some folks are, some folks aren't) .. it's probably not your fault.

It's either The End Of The World As We Know It (TEOTWAWK) or we have suddenly developed a cultural  dysfunction with no discernible cause.

For myself?  I figure I forgot how to send a text message.  Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Pistol Competition: Draw, Fire and Reload by Max Michel

Max Michel Shooting Tips - Tip #2 - Drawing From a Holster & Speed Reloads With a Pistol - YouTube It's time to get back to the Bete Noir of this website: competition skills. I've had a lot of emails and personal questions from people who are trying to get up to speed in IPSC competition. We need to remember that the three basic principles of IPSC (USPSA) competition are:
  • Speed
  • Power
  • Accuracy

In the original design of this article, we defined ACCURACY and POWER first.  But that's not why you're reading this, so we're going to talk first about SPEED, and then if you're still interested you can read about the other ' not very interesting, but necessary ' parts later:


SPEED is all about getting the shots off in the shortest possible time.

SPEED is all about getting the job done in the shortest possible time, without giving up POWER and ACCURACY.

The reason POWER is important is that with Major Power Loads, it takes you hundredths of a second more to recover for the second shot when you're double-tapping a target.

The reason ACCURACY is important is two-parted:
  1. you get more points with more accurate hits;
  2. it takes you tenths of a second longer to get more accurate hits
The reason SPEED is important is ... the formula for stage points is:


Assuming you don't get any penalties (misses, procedural penalties, etc.), it's really great to get a lot of points but if you take a LOT of time to get those points ..  you get burned if your trying to be 'Competitive'.

Let's look at the numbers:

Take for example an "El Presidente" stage where there are sixty points possible over three targets (shoot 3 targets twice each, reload, shoot the same 3 targets twice each).  "
Virginia Count", 12 shots,60 points possible.

Shooter 01 gets all A-zone hits .. doesn't matter what his power factor is (as long as it's at least minor power) he gets sixty points. He does it in 10 seconds.

His Stage Factor is Points less Penalties, divided by time: 60 - 0 / 10 = 60/10 = 6.000

Shooter 02 gets (of the 12 shots (six A-zone, six C-zone, shooting MAJOR) in 11 seconds)
His  score is 54 points divided by 10 seconds; Stage Factor is  (54/10) 5.40.

Shooter 03 gets 8 A-zone hits and 4 C-zone hits, in 8 seconds, shooting MINOR.  
His score is (8x5) + (4x3) = 40 + 13 = 54 points.
Divided by 8 seconds, his Stage Factor is (54/8) = 6.750

The winner?  Shooter 03.  Even though he's shooting MINOR and gets less points for 'near misses' (C-zone hits), and even though he got as many points as Shooter 01 .. he did the same job faster, so he wins the stage by a wide margin.

From this (obviously contrived) example, you're probably thinking WOW  ALL I GOTTA DO IS SHOOT FASTER AND I WIN!!!!!

Well, it's not that easy.  Actually, there are TWO parts of this exercise/stage that you need to control

  First is the "Facing uprange, wrists above shoulders, on signal turn and draw and ...: yadda yadda yadda,

This is important, and it's really hard, right?


Wrong!  I know it's not something you do all the time, but geez, how hard can it be?  Turn ... THEN draw?  That's all you have to know.

(Yes, I've seen Grand Masters muck this up at National Matches.  That's "Match Nerves" .. has nothing to do with you.  Ignore it; it's easy.)

That was a trick.

Here's the 'important' (not hard, just important) parts:

Part 1: The Draw (and first hit on the target)
You got to get that first hit.  Make it good, make it solid, make it smooth and OWN it.  It builds confidence, sets you up for the second shot (double-tap?) and all you have to do is get the same sight picture on every target during the rest of the stage.  Make it solid, make it good, make it be your ideal.  Take enough time to GET that first show.  Know it; own it.  Do it 11 more times.  Piece of cake.

Part 2: The Reload
Oh, you didn't notice that you had to do a reload?  You didn't notice?  Gee, you had the (link to) the Stage Procedures didn't know?  Here's the rule: if the stage procedures require you to do a mandatory reload, you're penalized 10 points for each shot fired after the mandatory reload and until you (eventually, maybe) DO the reload.  If you don't reload at all, that's six shots for sixty points, which means *(DUH!)* YOU ZEROED THE STAGE.

Geez, it took us a LONG time to get to the point of the lesson, but I hadda sneak up on ya, didn't I?

The thing is, you don't get to be FAST by shooting fast.  You still need to get the sight picture, squeeze the trigger, do your double-tap thingie (which does NOT mean instinctively pulling-the-trigger-as-fast-as-you-can twice .. but we'll talk about that later.)  What you do have to do is know when to cut down your time  .. and when to make the time work for you.

Essentially, make the time work for you by getting a good sight picture, sight alignment, and trigger pull.

Don't make your time up by cutting down on ANY of these essential elements of shooting!

Emphasize with lots more exclamation marks:  !!!!!!  Do not do not do NOT!!!!!

Make your stage faster by cutting down on the three time-wasters of IPSC:

  1. Movement
  2. Draw/First Show
  3. Reloads
We'll talk about 'Movement' some other time, so let's just focus on draw and reloads for now, shall we?  Max Michell has a lovely video to help you see this, and you'll see  the value of it I'm sure.

So, here's the lesson, courtesy of Max Michell:

The third principle is Accuracy.  That means hitting the target.  Preferably in the "A-Zone"  .. the highest scoring area of the target.  If you can do that, it means that you are awarded five (5) points for each hit.  That's the maximum number of scoring points you can get.

The second principle is Power.  If you are shooting a low-recoil caliber (such as the 9mm), you will probably be shooting 'Minor Power'.  Compare this with, for example, the .45 ACP cartridge.  Typically, this is defined as 'Major Power'.  The difference is defined by the momentum of the bullet.  If you have a heavy bullet (eg: .45ACP, 230 grains traveling  at a speed of 800 feet per second).

Here's where it gets complicated.
"Power" is determined by weighing the bullet, then shooting the ammunition (same bullet, different cartridge but with the same gun and amount of gunpowder) over a "Chronograph".  This is a device which meaures the speed of the bullet when fired from 'your' gun.  The bullet (or a typical sample) is also measured, by weighing it on a scale which measures the weight in grains within one one-thousandths of a grain.  That's 1/1000 grain.

A 230 grain bullet, then, would measure out as 'something close to' 230.000" grains.

The .45ACP (.45 caliber, Automatic Colt Pistol) round was MILSPEC (Military Specifications) assumed to be shooting a 230 grain bullet at a velocity of 800 Feet Per Second (FPS).

There is a formula for determining what is called the POWER FACTOR.  Essentially, a 230 grain bullet shout travel at about 800 FPS.  This gives a POWER FACTOR (PF) of about 174.

Here's the formula for determining POWER FACTOR:

PF = M V / 1000

That is: Mass (230 grains) times VELOCITY (800 FPC)  = PF.
For simplicity, you divide that quantity by 1000 to get the PF.

Here, that PF Calculation would look like this:
230 grains x 800 feet per second =  17,400
Divide that by 1,000, and you get a PF of (17,400 / 1,000) 174.

Now, the current regulations of USPSA define two different Power Factors  *:
Major Power:
Minor Power:

According to the USPSA.ORG rule book a pistol/ammunition must meet or exceed 170 PF to be rated as MAJOR POWER
And a pistol/ammunition must meet or exceed 128 PF to be rated as MINOR POWER.

*    Power factors lower than Minor Power may still compete, but their scores are not recorded and the are not eligible for competitive placement.)

(Note that these Power Factor Ratings have been adjusted from year to year .. check your current rule book at  under "RULES" at USPSA.ORG)

Why should you care?
The score for each scoring zone (other than the A-zone) differ whether you are shooting a firearm/ammunition combination which is rated as MAJOR or MINOR power

Here's the break-down:
  • A-Zone: 5 points
  • B-Zone: 4 points
  • C-zone:  4 points
  • D-Zone: 2 points

  • A-Zone: 5 points
  • B-Zone: 3 points
  • C-Zone: 3 points
  • D-Zone: 1 point
Note that the A-zone hit ALWAYS scores 5 points; but the other scoring zones allocate one less point for Minor power than for Major power.  That's because the minor-power situation provides for much easier control of the firearm .. with a penalty of much less 'stopping power'.

(We'll leave this subject for discussion in a future post.  Just now, we're merely telling you about the rules, not the tactics.)

With a Major Power rating,

Be Ready For Bullets: Mindset for the Nation?

How prepared can we be if evil strikes again?:

Perhaps I'm not The Only One who is trying to get the message out.  It appears that some people aren't willing to accept the flawed premise that: "It's Okay For Us To Be Sheep; We Have A SHEEPDOG!"

(The "Sheepdog:" is the police; their job is to call the ambulances ... and the coroner.)

Here is a short article which examines the alternate reality:  What if a school (or other institution) actually trains their charges in the most likely effective responses to an attack?

Even as we struggle to figure out what happened at Sandy Hook Elementary School — who did what and why — the sad frequency of attacks by men with guns is creating a growing school of thought based on a simple premise: Be ready for the bullets. These mass shootings, but also bombings and terror attacks, have fueled a need, rational or not, to be prepared for the worst in whatever form it may come and know how to act when it does.

Chances are, if you are in Ground Zero of a terrorist attack (doesn't matter if it's a 'disturbed' young American, that's what this shit is), if you're not armed the best way to avoid being injured ... or killed .. is to 'not be there'.

If you're a sheep, you'll just follow the herd.  Most of the herd is standing in one place, facing the door, wondering WTF is happening?

But there is a sub-group in that herd who Has A Clue.  Those individuals know that their best chance of surviving the next few moments is to be among the folks who have decided to 'not be there'.

Why are they 'not there'?  Because they are Ready for Bullets.  They don't expect the worst, they're just ready for it.  And so they have already decided that it's better to go away and later feel foolish, than to stick around and be cool .. as in, room temperature.

... while nothing can ever prepare children for what happened at Sandy Hook, having a specific procedure to follow probably did help keep the youngsters calm and focused — and could potentially minimize the effects of the trauma down the road, said Stephen Brock, a professor of school psychology at California State University, Sacramento.
Here are the Three Laws of Survivor Thermodynamics:
  1. Those who have a plan, have a chance
  2. "Pure Thoughts" are good to have at the last moments of your life; but they don't necessarily extend your Life Expectancy
  3. Be Ready For Bullets
I just made them up.   We're all open to suggestions for improvement.   If it saves just one child ....

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

More guns mean more guns?

Connecticut shootings conspiracy - Philadelphia Relationships |

This video is one of the less extreme discussions on the subject which I've seen recently:

(I don't agree with much that is said, but it at least seems more balanced .. although not very balanced .. than most MSM discussions.)

The accompanying commentary, however, seems a bit over the top.   It's a Conspiracy Theory, and frankly it sounds .... to be kind ... stupid.

It's a Conspiracy Theory, and here's the Money Quote:

It is not a coincidence of circumstances of the tragedy as concerns the upcoming UN small arms treaty and gun control. Adam Lanza used legally registered weapons to perform a mass murder. Could this horrific event have been planned to get the UN Small Arms Treaty signed?
The article is poorly written, and the premise is absurd.  It's full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

Conspiracy?  Who planned this?

In this country, the premier Conspiracy Theorist is The Federal Government of the United States of America.

The Feds did this?

Don't make me laugh!  (maniacal laughter)

The Feds .. especially the office of the President of the United States (POTUS) couldn't successfully engineer and keep secret a conspiracy.  Remember Watergate?

The Feds couldn't conspire a wet dream.   Remember Fellatio-Gate Lewensky?

I'm not saying that there are NOT people in this country who would like to United States to sign on to the United Nations Small Arms Treaty (UNSAT)

Oh, by the way?  UNSAT PASSEDAll nations signed it on September 20, 2012.  Apparently that includes the United States.

However, the U.S. Senate has not yet ratified the treaty.  That means, POTUS (Obama) directed his ambassador to the United Nations to sign the treaty.  But POTUS doesn't have the power to demand that it be ratified by the senate.

Apparently, this is the crisis point at which some folks think a conspiracy may have 'engineered' an 'event' to put the American people behind a drive which will do an end-run around the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States.

What if the treaty (this case, UNSAT) runs counter to the U.S. Constitution?    I've talked a little bit about this kind of contretemps before, and I just went back and revisited the "Treaty Clause"  (Article II of the Constitution) question here.

I'm not going to make any decision for myself at this point, because I'm not a constitutional scholar .. and neither is Wikipedia.  Just .. consider this an 'overview' presented for your consideration.

It's controversial, it's scary, and it's hard to get any idea about how America will jump vis a vis the UNSAT treaty.

The point of this discussion, however, is whether the Connecticut school shooting was engineered to sway public opinion toward adoption and acceptance of UNSAT.

I don't believe it.  One of the reasons, I don't believe it is that there have been enough Mass Murders in this country in the past 30 years that another one is just not necessary.

And THAT consideration is the reason I'm not going to get much sleep tonite.

In the word of John Lennon (perhaps slightly perverted here) ... I'm not the only one.

Monday, December 17, 2012

It is time for a national conversation

The Sandy Hook shootings: It is time for a national conversation | Washington Times Communities

I know, you're tired of reading my 'slanted' opinions vis a vis gun control vs "do it for the children". Still, I think it's worth one more SMALL effort to exemplify the way the left is politicizing this tragedy.   This little bit is in response to, and generally formated as the author of, this Washington Times Communities opinion article (see link above).

In the wake of the tragic slaughter of innocents at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, it is not too soon for a national conversation about guns. The biggest question before us is why such horrible weapons of mass violence such as the Glock 9mm and the Sig Sauer are sold to the public. Guns like this make it easier and faster to kill lots of people with just one gun; think then of the damage two assault weapons can inflict. Already the country is talking about gun control and putting teeth into our existing laws. It is time for politicians to quit being ostriches and confront this important national issue. And it’s time for President Obama to step up and lead the way. This is the time for responsible gun owners to stand up for real licensing requirements. 
 Nice Lady, we have already had a National Conversation About Guns.  We called it "The Constitutional Convention".  During that process the autocratic impulses of reigning politics were hamstrung by a people who didn't want their government telling them how to live their day-to-day lives.   The results of that National Conversation was that We The People didn't like it when King George locked up their firearms in an armory.   So if you want a national conversation about private ownership of firearms, you need to accept that many participants are going to vehemently disagree with your opinion. 

Here's my contribution to the Conversation:

"Horrible weapons of mass violence"?  When you say that, I think "Crack Cocaine".  I think about automobiles which kill tens of thousands of people a year ... and I imagine the violence that alcohol addiction imposes on families, and I think about Mothers Against Drunk Drivers.

I think about Cancer,  to whom I lost my Significant Other; I think about Heart Disease, to whom I lost my father.  I think about surgical procedures gone wrong, to whom I lost my Mother..  I think about nine-eleven, and wars, and occasionally (and most recently) I think about the mental disease which has become so terribly prevalent in our country since we closed all the mental hospitals and turned those crazy people out in the streets to beg on the corners of our urban centers with their cardboard signs and their stored hatred.  I think about street gangs, drugs, racial hatred.  I think about welfare, socialism which reduces Good People to governmental dependency just to feed their children.

Gird your armor and talk about the random violence, the disintegration of socity and of families caused by all of these societal ills.  THEN compare them to the 'gun violence' which is practiced by people who are NOT part of those 'communities'.

I think you are aiming your vitriol against (what you may perceive as) a relatively small 'community' of people who don't think that "Guns Are Evil"  And I think about the Second Amendment is NOT about "hunting" but about "Defense".

"Defense" includes not only defending your home, your family and your possessions against the predations of "anti-social predators", but against "all enemies foreign and domestic".  In 1968, a week after I was married, I took an oath to protect my country against those entities.  I've completed my military service, but my oath still stands.  Have you taken such an oath?  If not, then perhaps your moral ascendency is slightly tarnished.

And YOU have the nerve to suggest that I should be deprived of the means to defend my home?

I don't think much about the Glock; and although the Sig Sauer is a fine pistol, I don't choose to own one.  And no, I don't own The Evil AR15.  I do, however, own several pistols, rifles and shotguns.  None of them have EVER been pointed at a person, and most of them have never been pointed at anything more offensive than a paper or cardboard target.  In fact, I've almost given up hunting;  I can buy beef at 10% per pound of the price of a deer hunt, and since I'm old and lazy, hunting has not the same appeal to me as it once did.

So most of my firearms are memorabilia of a more active period in my life.  I have them to remind myself of when I was younger, and more active; and I also keep them out of respect both for the fine machinery, and for my father who built many of my firearms from "common clay".  (He was a craftsman as a stock maker and a gunsmith.)

And YOU have the nerve to suggest that I should give up these sentimental, these historic firearms?

Lately, which is to say for the past 20 years, I've been amusing myself by competing in pistol competition.  Even after all these years of practice, I admit that I'm still not very good at it.  But it provides me some time to meet with my friends (who share my perverse choice of amusement) and the sheer joy of trying to hit the center of a cardboard target 'at speed" is .. while rarely rewarding in terms if "bragging rights", is still high in the adrenalin rush of an old man who wants to prove to himself that he 'still has it'.  (Even if we all know he really doesn't.)

And YOU have the nerve to suggest that I should give up one of the last physical activities, and social events, which are still available to me?

One of these days, I will die.  When that happens, my children and their spouses will have to decide who gets what.  I derive some pleasure in imagining how they will fight over the .22-250 Varmint Rifle with the Oregon Rock Maple Stock, and the STI Edge 10mm Pistol with the 18-round magazines, and even the lowly Taurus  Model 85 in .38 Special, and the upper-end Taurus Model 65 in .357 magnum with the four inch barrel.  I spend my idle moments (not that frequently, but occasionally) thinking of my Navy son and his irish brother in law arguing about who gets what ... and the daughter and the step-daughter breaking in to say that the 85 or the P3-AT are "just right for them".  And I laugh, because I know that the odds that I can look down from heaven and enjoy their good-natured conflict.

And YOU have the unmitigated gall to suggest that this small, simple pleasure of an old man should become nothing more than a pipe dream?

While I do realize, and accept, that all of these concepts of firearms being both an intensely personal relationship (yes, I know, you think I'm just another "Gun Nut" ... my father taught me 40 years ago to understand that this is not a term of approbation, but an honor) are anathema to you, I don't think that YOU understand that YOUR attitude is equally distasteful and insulting to me.

You seem to believe that no man or woman can own a woman and not succumb to the succubus of slaughter which is incarnate in The Evil Gun.

You seem to believe that anyone who would willingly say, in the face of Modern Media Coverage, that "I Love My Guns", is some sort of deranged Neanderthal.  You think that I consider my firearms an extension of my penis, and that my entire being (including 'sexual') is wrapped up in my guns.  It's like owning a big car .. it must be some kind of some kind of compensation for having a small penis, plus I can't get girls.  My late Significant Other must also have penis envy, because she enjoyed shooting pistols in competition, also.

The point is, you have no idea what variety of ways are available to people who enjoy the shooting sports.  Competition, plinking, hunting ... all are common means by which people (not just the perverts and wanna-be assassins  which you seem to imagine populate the gun owners of America) have made firearms ownership a billion dollar industry in this country.

All you see is a sick obsession with firearms.  And you immediately and unthinkingly conflate that enjoyment with the sick f*cks who break into a school and kill little children.

Shame on you.

Shame on you for making the 'intuitive' connection.  You didn't think it through.  You see the Gun; you don't see the people.

You see the potential for violence; you don't see the people. Sane,  down-home people who just want to have fun with their friends.  Without drinking, without anger,  Just clean, SAFE competition .. or hunting, of course.

Most of my friends have guns, and they use them to hunt, in competition or just to plink at tin cans.  When they shoot, they don't see "people".  They don't want to hurt anyone.  They just enjoy that shooting guns at targets is liking throwing darts at a target; only without the intoxicants, but usually with the bonhomerie of sharing an amusement with friends.

Well, there's the loud noises, of course; you don't get that with Darts.  Bud DAMN!  It's not often that you have to wear earmuffs when you're throwing darts!

I look forward to your next article, when you skewer tavern dart-throwers because they obviously have 'skewer issues' and other forms of penis envy.

Oh, by the way; this is what I all "a national conversation".

" some gun control, less media coverage"

David Brooks calls for some gun control, less media coverage in wake of Sandy Hook shooting 

The mass-shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, which left 20 children and six adults dead, is an important opportunity to reconsider the role of both the media and gun control policy, New York Times columnist David Brooks argued on Friday.

Brooks, speaking on PBS’s “NewsHour,” suggested that people with certain mental health conditions should be denied access to guns, before urging the media not to inadvertently glorify the suspected shooter, 20-year-old Adam Lanza.

“I think it would be helpful in the media if we did not publicize these people, especially if they have committed suicide,” he said. “Don’t put them on the cover of magazines. Don’t put their faces on TV. Don’t release their names. I somehow think that would diminish some of the perverse heroism of them.”
(David Brooks is a political and cultural commentator who writes for The New York Times. He worked as an editorial writer and film reviewer for the Washington Times; a reporter and later op-ed editor .)

As awkward as I feel agreeing with a Columnist for the New York Times, I can't help aggreeing with Mr. Brooks, at least in part.

Well .. let me see:  Disallowing firearms ownership to people with "certain mental health conditions"?   Gee, the last time I bought a firearm, I had to answer "NO" to the question about "Are You A Loony?"  (nb: not a direct quote .. but that was the crux of the question.)  Apparently the Federal government already has that "Gun Nut Loophole" firmly covered.

The part about not publicizing the PERSON?  Yeah, I can support that.  Brooks argues that is important "...especially if they have committed suicide".   That's okay; God forbid we should embarrass them in public, but since they're already dead ... oh, wait.  The don't care.  Hmmm .. I guess I don't really understand the distinction.

I think am pretty sure that Brooks is suggesting that we shouldn't "glorify" the madmen.  In my mind, that concept is A Good Idea whether they commit suicide or not.  But how about if they are killed by a crazed saloon killer while being transferred from their jail cell ... is that okay?  That's what happened to Lee Harvey Oswald ... and so far (knock on wood) that hasn't led to the further assassination of American presidents; I think (let me do the math: 2012 minus 1963...) 49 years of "No Wanna-Be's" suggests that it's okay to publish the assassin's name if he's killed by a crazed saloon killer.

So .. I guess he's saying that if they're gone, we ought to just fagettaboutit.  If they're still alive, of course we'll have the media reporting on their  capture, trial, sentence, yadda yadda yadda.  (Sorry; all I know about how New Yorkers talk is what I read in The Times.)   So if we try to keep their names out of the papers, it would constitute an infringement on The First Amendment.  Not on the madman's rights but the Fourth Estate.

Perhaps I'm not totally sold on the DETAILS, but I'm pretty sure I agree on one thing:

... we're never going to 'understand' these Evil Doers.  Maybe it doesn't require that we 'understand' them.  So why do we need to know more about them except that some asshole shot up some good people?

Maybe there are other assholes out there, who see the media frenzy and think:
 "Hey, I'm a worthless asshole; but if I go shoot up some good people then people will get to know my name and I'll be famous.  People will remember my name!  Gee, it worked for Lee Harvey Oswald and Mark David Chapman and ... well, who knows?  And if I blow off my freakin' head when I'm done, people will know that at heart I'm really a Sensitive guy!   But I sure don't want to get shot by some cop like Charles Whitman was done in at the Texas Tower in '66.   On the other hand, that guy who shot up Luby's Restaurant in Texas and then (you guessed it) shot himself in the head?  Almost nobody remembers his name, 'cause it was only mentioned once and then quickly forgotten."
So okay, I think it's a good idea; let's all agree to forget these worthless assholes immediately.  Deny them the fruits of their madness, as intangible and illogical as they may seem.  Let's wipe their names off the face of the earth, and insure that they will achieve none of the goals of which they dreamed.  It's the least we can do, and perhaps it's the most we can do.  Nothing will be sufficient, of course, to express our contempt for their acts.


We won't forget the people they killed. 

But we will know one thing for sure.  We'll know that they died for NOTHING! 

To my mind, that's the most shameful, the most ignominious, the most insulting end of all.   To die for NOTHING!   If I'm murdered, I don't want the asshole to say "nothing personal".  At least, I would want to know that I'm dying for some reason which is more important than the pitiful self-aggrandizement of some loony-bin asshole. 

I hate it that all of those children, and their heroic teachers and principle, died at Sandy Hook.  But that they died for nothing?  That's the most despicable act of all.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Another massacre ... in Connecticut

Elementary school massacre: 20 children among 28 killed in Connecticut slaughter - U.S. News: A teacher's son, clad in black and carrying two 9mm pistols, rampaged through a Connecticut elementary school Friday, killing 20 small children and six adults, a tragedy President Barack Obama said had broken the hearts of America.
Damn, I am getting so freaking TIRED of this!

I don't know about you, but I feel like a tether-ball being bounced back and forth on what seems to be a daily basis.

When I wrote about the most recent Mall shooting, in Oregon, I found it easy to blame that part of the American Culture which wants to ban all guns and let the Government take care of us.   But guns are still also a part of that culture, and nothing will stop a madman (I've decided to let the "Sick Fuck" nomenclature be a term which you will automatically translate the word "madman" to mean) who will steal a gun or two or three.

And of course merely making guns illegal, and confiscating all private firearms, will not stop this.  Australia and England have thoroughly proven that THIS is not a workable solution.  Even the nullification of the Second Amendment would stop this kind of senseless slaughter.

No more workable are all of the restrictions which America has tried to impose ... most notoriously in the 10-year 1994 "Assault Weapons Ban" which "sunsetted" because it had proved that restricting access had no demonstrable effect on "gun violence" except to make it harder for sane, honest citizens to defend themselves.

Once again, we're reduced to trivia and tears: trivia, because you can't legislate effectively against violence especially by 'restricting' the means to impose the violence;  tears, because when even the most well-intended governmental restrictions don't work we weep from both grief and frustration.

Because we cannot even defend our children.

I was a child during the Truman and Eisenhower years, and I recall as a ten-year-old being worried about some kind of nameless threat.  I worried that someone would try to hurt me; in retrospect, I think it was because my fourth-grade teacher Mr. Gorman had teased us with imaginary tells of the "Sherwood Slaughterer" who would creep though our bedroom windows and night and steal us away, never to be seen again ... alive.

Then I reasoned:  "I'm only a little boy.  Why would anyone want to hurt me?  And I found comfort in  that pre-pubescent syllogism.

Now I realize that my fears were not entirely irrational.  Oh, perhaps they weren't so immediate during the mid-1950's, but today I wonder that all of our children are at risk from the day they are born.

Suddenly we're back to the Thirty Years War.   During that dark period of the 17h century, no man, woman or child was safe against the predation of English, French, Spanish, German .. all of the (essentially "mercenary") ... armies which roamed across the face of Europe; the populace was the source of food, supplies, and 'entertainment' by the all-but-leaderless armies whose commanders worried only about defeating their enemies and feeding their armies.  They had little or no concern for 'protecting the people'.

Today, our governments are all about "The People" .. but they still cannot provide the internal security against this new breed of 'mercenaries'.  We have our own 'predators', but we call them 'madmen'.  (see definition, above).

Here is a Sixty-Minutes look at the .. event:

Perhaps one 'answer' ... or at least part of the answer ...may be found here.

Or another viewpoint here.

What is the source of these 'madmen'?  Are they all psychotic?  We would like to think they are.  I know that *_I_*  prefer to think of them as such.  Who else would slaughter innocents with such apparent gay abandon?  And they almost invariably climax their attacks with self-immolation (usually with the now-classic "self-administered gunshot to the head).  It's almost as if they believe, somehow, that their willingness to take their own life will be understood as their own personal acknowledgment that they know they did something unforgivably wrong, and they are willing to take responsibility for their actions.  So, that makes everything okay, right?

 I don't really think so.

In Dante's "Inferno", he describes nine circles of hell.  Essentially, each circle is reserved for violators of one of the Seven Deadly Sins.   It seems to me that these madmen are candidates for at least five of the nine circles, and I personally hope that they serve subsequent, rather than concurrent terms in HELL for the evil which they do.

We can just forget about our concerns for their mental states.   There is more than hormonal imbalances involved here.  These people are not just sick.  They are evil.  Some of our religions advise us to hate the sin, and forgive the sinners.

This particular bunch of sinners are exceedingly hard to forgive.   It's easy for us to take this approach, if our religion advocates that philosophy.   Even for those who make it almost impossible for us to forgive then;  after all,  if they were truly evil, would they then suicide when they realized that they had done the evil?

I am not that religious.   These attacks, however, make it much more attractive for me to to believe in Heaven, for if there is a Heaven, there must also be a Hell.

I very much hope there must be a Hell.  And tonite, Satan must be feasting and doing the Macarena because his new Best Boy is roasting.  Appropriately named ... Adam.

Hopefully, for all of eternity.

Bon Appetite, Satan.