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Posts from — April 2017

Stuff

As the new tenant has taken over most of the work in the apartment I get to shift my focus to emptying and removing a ‘super single’ waterbed which requires special sheets and is too big for one and too small for two. I decided against simply taking my Buck General in there and slashing the sucker, but it took all day to get most of the water out using siphoning.

Once that’s out of the way I will build a platform for a full size mattress so people can stay without getting seasick, and I don’t have to pay for the heater.

April 18, 2017   2 Comments

Happy Easter

Easter Eggs

This is what happens when you have small children – you dye your kitchen.

Yes, the festival of Easter, goddess of the Spring, is celebrated this time of year with the traditional symbols of fertility, the egg and the rabbit, by the people who settled around the Baltic Sea – the Teutons, Slavs, Finns, Prussians, Letts, et al. It is a festival of plenty after the hardships of winter, with the promise of new growth.

Of course, later groups took the celebration and turned it to other purposes, but I doubt Easter minds.

I celebrated by buying stuff to rehab an apartment. Everyone has their own way of observing holidays.

April 16, 2017   5 Comments

Tax Day

Friday Cat Blogging

Property and Excise are 10 today.

The traditional theme music for the day on YouTube.

April 15, 2017   4 Comments

Just Look At The Picture

An open thread illustration for Crooks & Liars.

Meanwhile ISIS claims that the MOAB only caused minor damage: “It’s just a flesh wound”.

April 14, 2017   2 Comments

A Big Ugly Mother

The BBC reports US military drops ‘mother of all bombs on IS’ in Afghanistan and provides a video of them blowing up nothing out at Range 70 on Eglin AFB.

I located a History channel video of the test with more explanation of what the GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast bomb is: a 30 feet long aluminum tube, about 3½ feet in diameter and packed with 11 tons of TNT. It is carried by an MC-130 of AF Special Operations Command and deployed out the rear ramp.

I was 15 miles away when they tested the thing down here and I could feel it as well as hear it. It is a very special purpose anti-personnel weapon that is only really effective in canyons or tunnels networks.

April 13, 2017   3 Comments

A Puzzlement

When did airlines stop sorting out overbooking at the gate and start doing it after the passengers were on board with carry-on luggage stored in the overhead bins? It is a lot easier to deal with problems in the open space of the gate area than trying to remove someone from the restrictive space of an aircraft cabin.

I’m getting the feeling that the flight was overbooked; people were boarded until all of the seats were filled; and then the four United employees showed up needing a seat. If the airline knew they needed four seats for a crew, they should have filled those seats first, and then start boarding paying passengers.

I realize that flying is now considered a privilege that requires you to submit to annoying/humiliating security theater, and you have almost no rights after putting out a considerable amount of money. This is why CEOs want a corporate airplane – so they don’t have to put up with this crap.

I was fortunate enough to have done most of my flying on commercial aircraft when even tourist class got real silverware to eat with, and the food was delivered by people who were smiling and seemingly enjoying their jobs. When flights were overbooked, airline employees seemed to be genuinely sorry about the problem and worked to get you on another flight. Today passengers are no longer customers, but simply objects to be moved from point A to point B when it is convenient for the corporation.

Update: Wikipedia has a decent summary of the event and the United contractor, Repulic Airlines flying as United Express, whose employees were responsible for this situation.

April 12, 2017   2 Comments

Reductio ad Hitlerum

A lot of people have broken Godwin’s law over the years, but it take a special kind of schmuck to do it during Passover in front of the White House press corps.

Someone needs to prepare a sticker for the podium explaining – Assad gassed hundreds, Saddam gassed thousands, and Hitler gassed millions.

April 11, 2017   5 Comments

Let The Agitprop Begin

The US is claiming Syria war: US missiles ‘took out 20% of aircraft’. Well they do modify that by saying operational aircraft. No one has shown evidence of more than 6 damaged airframes, and the highest number anyone has stated was 14. but there is no indication of aircraft type. Su-22 Fitters were launching the day after the attack, but the Syrian Air Force also has MiG-23 Flogger ground attack aircraft, and both Russia and Iran can make up any losses.

About the runway – Tomahawks can’t successfully disable a runway long term, but the US has munitions that will do the job. Limiting the strike to Tomahawks keeps US crews out of danger, but reduces the effectiveness of the strike.

The replacement cost of a Tomahawk in the fiscal year 2017 Defense Department budget is $ 1.87 million or $ 110.33 million [1.1 F-35s] to blow-up a fuel tank, a cafeteria, a couple of hangars, and some airframes that couldn’t be moved out of harms way. This resulted in a 24 hour stand down by the Syrian Air Force.

The American people and a majority of Congress were the only people that didn’t know about the strike in advance. The Russians were told, and they told the Syrians. The ‘group of 8’ in Congress were told, but it was classified so they couldn’t talk about it. The American people aren’t told as much about what their government is doing than the Russians. That is not right.

April 10, 2017   6 Comments

RIP John Clarke

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation announced that Satirist John Clarke, of Clarke and Dawe fame, has died at age 68. If you have never heard of him and are old enoungh, Clarke and Dawe were the Australian version of Bob and Ray.

I know, you don’t know who they were, so do yourself a favor and watch “The Front Fell Off”.

Update: The ABC has posted their picks for the best of Clarke and Dawe.

Their routines are on YouTube, so you can see what you have missed.

April 9, 2017   Comments Off on RIP John Clarke

Comings & Goings

The House Intelligence Committee just got slightly smarter as Devin Nunes left to deal with an ethics complaint. Mike Conaway is now leading the investigation that is intended to provide cover for the White House.

Steve Bannon is off the National Security Council as result of General McMaster and/or Jared Kushner, depending on the the source you read.

We have launched Tomahawk cruise missiles at Syrian airfields. I would assume there will be Russian casualties as well as Syrian. Trump stated that this was a reaction to a poison gas attack.

April 6, 2017   6 Comments

The Odyssey – 2017 CE

There was nothing critical in the package and the total value of the merchandise was under $10, but the shipping doubled the cost, so I was annoyed. I took the cheapest option so didn’t expect it to show up for at least a week.

A week passed and I had the tracking number so I checked to see where it was. It was shipped from New York City so I assumed it would be thrown in a truck using I-95. I was right, but the truck it was put in was on I-95 North and it went to a suburb of Boston. There they discovered the problem and put it on a truck going South.

I wasn’t upset – stuff happens, anyone could mistake Watertown, Massachusetts for Fort Walton Beach, Florida. 😈 Things were back on track. I-95 down to Jacksonville, then I-10 to Tallahassee. Things were moving right along and the package was scanned into Fort Walton Beach very early last Thursday.

It didn’t show up on Thursday, so I checked and they said Friday … then it was Monday, then on Tuesday they stopped posting a delivery date. I e-mailed the merchant and told them that it appeared the shipper had lost the package.

The merchant put out a trace, and the shipper started looking around. Last night they found the package in Montgomery, Alabama, and shipped it back to Fort Walton.

It finally showed up during a thunderstorm early this afternoon [another inch of rain]. The package had not 1, not 2, but 4 different labels on it with the correct address. WTF?!

April 5, 2017   10 Comments

Some People …

Some believe that just because they have paid full price for an airline ticket, they are entitled to a seat on the aircraft.

‘I expect a seat’: Yukon woman buys Air Canada ticket, gets put on standby:

Air Canada spokesperson Angela Mah said in an email to CBC that standby tickets are generally not issued to customers. But she said if the airline substitutes a smaller aircraft because of mechanical problems or other operational reasons, passengers will be put on standby.

In a second email, Mah said Washburn-Hayden’s flight was “extremely full,” but did not say if that meant it was overbooked.

After her flight, Washburn-Hayden had a messaging exchange with Air Canada Social Media, and was told that because she didn’t pay extra for a guaranteed seat, her getting one was dependent on availability. She was also advised that she should have taken advantage of the online booking available 24 hours before the flight.

See, it’s just like baggage, there a fee for it … 😈

So, when do these Air Canada people start work in the White House?

April 4, 2017   2 Comments

Just Pathetic…

F-35A

The Register notes: Head of US military kit-testing slams F-35, says it’s scarcely fit to fly – “Gun: fail. Flight: fail. Software: fail. Schedule: fail. Budget: fail. Plus 270 more fails.”

Read the whole thing and download the PDF of the critique. For about $100 million a copy you could own a totally worthless ground vehicle, because it would be really suicidal to take it into combat. [Less suicidal than before because the ejection seat no longer breaks the pilot’s neck when used … they claim.]

April 3, 2017   6 Comments

First Monday

Severe Thunderstorm Warning, Tornado Watch, Flash Flood Watch, Flood Advisory, High Surf Advisory, Wind Advisory, Coastal Flooding Advisory, Rip Current Statement, and 3.27 inches of rain.

Now we have the rest of the month to double the average monthly rainfall which is rising because we have been doubling or tripling it for the last 3+ years in our new climate.

April 3, 2017   6 Comments