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Just like Dad

I wrote this post three years ago, and I never published it. I don’t know why, so here it is:

My mother recently came to see me because she wanted to speak with me about the death of my father. For those of you who do not know, my father died in May of 2005. It was one of the worst days of my life. Even though I knew at the time that his passing would affect me, I had no idea that nearly 2 years later the wounds would still be so fresh. That was the reason my mother was here to see me. Mothers seem to sense these things.

Dealing with life and death issues as often as I do, I really felt like I knew what was coming when I learned of his passing. I was wrong.

Like any boy, I loved my father. A boy’s love for his father is not the affection you show for a lover, nor is it even remotely like the love of a mother for her children. You see, boys have a need to seek the approval of their fathers. They are driven by an overwhelming need to grow into even a fraction of the man that they perceive their fathers to be. Most of all, they want to earn the respect of their Dad.

I fought in a war. I gave him grandchildren. I became the first person in my family tree to graduate from college. I have delivered babies, I have held others as the life slipped from their bodies. I have pulled dying people out of burning buildings, I jumped in a lake to save a drowning man from an alligator. When my dad had a heart attack, I was the medic who worked on him. I have filled sandbags in Missouri to save flooding homes, sifted through ruined homes looking for the dead in disasters, and fed the survivors. All of these things I did, trying to be half the man I perceived him to be. I began to teach classes on medical procedures, hoping to teach the next generation of providers. Again, for him.

Then, he was gone. I carried him to his grave, and since that time, I have carried my grief around in my heart like a lead weight, and at times it has been nearly overpowering. I asked myself countless times if I measured up.

This morning, my son came to me with 2 movie tickets and asked me if I wanted to go out with him. We spent the afternoon with each other. I am proud of my son, as he starts his new job on Monday as a firefighter. As I looked at him on the way home, I realized that my son was trying to be larger than life.

Just like his Dad.

I finally did it Dad, I am just like you.

and to you, son: You have indeed earned my respect. You have fulfilled every expectation and dream that any father has a right to hope for his son.

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Press anti-gun agenda

The press is making hay out this guy being caught with a .50 caliber rifle. I know that you in the press don’t know the difference, and aren’t really interested in the difference, but .50 caliber refers to quite a few different cartridges, and there is a large difference between them:

The round most people think of when they hear 50 caliber, is the .50 BMG. This round is used in heavy machine guns and in the Barret rifle. It fires a 647 grain bullet at 3000 feet per second, which equates to over 13,000 foot pounds of force. While there are ways to convert an AR-15 frame to fire this round, such a rifle is not going to be light, and a person will not be able to hide it under a coat.

More likely, the cartridge we are talking about is the .50 Beowolf. It fires a 325 grain bullet at 2,000 feet per second, developing 2900 foot-pounds of force. To compare this, the .30 06, a common round used in hunting, fires a 200 grain bullet at just over 2500 feet per second, thus generating about 2900 foot pounds of force.

There are even pistol cartridges that are technically .50 caliber, such as the .50 Action Express, a pistol round fired by the Desert Eagle. Firing a 325 grain bullet at 1400 feet per second, it develops about 1400 ft/lbs of energy. There is also the .500 Smith and Wesson, firing a 400 grain bullet at 1800 feet per second, and delivering just under 2900 foot pounds of force.

Even the grenade launcher is said to be a 37mm grenade launcher. Except it isn’t. The 37mm launcher is not classed as a grenade launcher (destructive device) by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. According to them, it is a FLARE LAUNCHER, and there are not even any grenades available for it, just flares and smoke signaling devices.

In other words, this guy was not in possession of anything out of the ordinary. Heck, I have better weapons in my gun safe. The problem is that the truth here does not fit in with the agenda of the press: create pants-wetting hysteria in the public, so you can influence opinion in an uneducated populous to advance your agenda.

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What were they thinking?

When Apple thought up the name for the new iPad?

I am also hoping that I can parley an iPad post into some hits for the ‘ole hit counter.

I know, I am a whore.

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More signs of recovery?

No. Instead, we have December home sales down 17%, mostly because the government tax credit giveaway was set to expire November 30, so many who were gonna buy did so during November. Cash for Clunkers had a similar effect.

Expect Obama to tell us we are recovering, just like we were in May 2008, December 2008, January 2009, March 2009, April 2009, May 2009, July 2009, and August 2009. Remember those good old days of 2008, when they told us that we weren’t officially in a recession yet?

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Poor Service

I bought a Gemtech Suppressor from Spike’s Tactical in Apopka, Florida in mid May of 2009. They made me pay full price for the suppressor at the time I bought it, because it takes so long for approvals to come back. I sent the Form 4 into the ATF on May 15. It was returned to me 2 weeks later, unopened. Why? Because Spike’s had used an old version of the Form 4, and it had the wrong address on it.

I resent it to the ATF on June 1. ATF got the form on June 4. I called in August to check on the status, and I was told it went pending July 27, and that I would be waiting for a long time.

Finally, I got tired of waiting, and called ATF. They just told me that the form was approved and mailed in November. I called Spike’s, and they told me that there is only one person in the whole business that can handle class 3 problems, and he is at the SHOT show. He will supposedly return my call on Monday.

I am not impressed. I could have had this thing over 2 months ago, and they let the ONE guy who handles transfers leave town for a week? They didn’t bother to call me when the Forms came back approved? It upsets me that my purchase was delayed because first they gave me an old form with the wrong address, second because they got my approved paperwork back and decided it wasn’t important enough to call me, and compounded my dissatisfaction by leaving the office unstaffed by anyone who can actually get things done for over a week.

Edit: I called Spike’s this morning, and they told me the guy was still out of town. I am going up there and see what I can get accomplished in person.

Edit 2: I made the 45 minute drive, and stomped my feet until they let me talk to Spike himself. He straightened the problem out in less than 10 minutes. It seems that they had my paperwork the entire time, but the employee in charge of NFA transactions lost my phone number and was either too lazy or too stupid to simply write me a letter at the address on my Form 4.

Either way, I got my suppressor.

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One year anniversary

Here we are, one year into the Obama Presidency. His inaugural term is 25% complete.How is he doing?

One year ago, the then President-elect told us that we could expect trillion-dollar deficits for the foreseeable future. I predicted that Obama would borrow $2.1 trillion in his first year, and would leave us $17 trillion in debt by the end of his first term. He borrowed his first trillion dollars in 6 months.

At the end of his first year, Americans are $12.32 trillion in debt, or $1.7 trillion more than one year ago. To put this in perspective, it took this nation 210 years to borrow $1.7 trillion. From George Washington to Ronald Reagan- Obama borrowed that in just one year.

Unemployment has climbed from 8% to over 10%. There are more troops overseas now than when he became President.

I give him an F.

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This is open?

The President’s press secretary displays the Obama open access policy while talking about the loss of the Democrat supermajority:

“Broadly speaking, can you talk about the difference between 59 and 60 votes in the Senate and what that means for the president’s agenda this year?”

“Broadly, it’s one,” Gibbs answered.

Will Obama hold a news conference Wednesday to discuss the results?

“Be here around 10 a.m. If we’re not here, start without us.”

“Is there something you could have done better,” asked Sheryl Stolberg of the New York Times, so that “you wouldn’t be in the situation that you’re in right now?”

“Sheryl,” Gibbs replied, “I’ll read this transcript and think there’s things that I could have done better.” No doubt.

On Tuesday, he allowed that Obama was “angry” over Democrats’ troubles in Massachusetts. “With whom is he angry?” a reporter asked.

“I didn’t expand on that,” the spokesman replied.

“Okay, can you now?”

“I won’t now.”

“But you might tomorrow?”

“There’s always hope,” Gibbs said, using a favorite Obama campaign word.

“Audacious,” interjected CBS News’s Mark Knoller, using another.

Read the Whole thing. It seems like the mainstream, report on press release media is beginning to wake up. Too bad they couldn’t ave listened to us 3 years ago, we might have gotten a real choice instead of choosing between the socialist behind door number one, two, or three.

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Laws keep us safe?

This is my belated MLK post. One of Dr King’s quotes:

It may be true that the law cannot make a man love me, but it can keep him from lynching me, and I think that’s pretty important.

Bullshit. The law cannot prevent a man from lynching you any more than the law can prevent the sale of drugs, rape, murder, the theft of your stereo, or anything else, for that matter. The only thing the law does is punish people when they break the law- after the fact. Sure, this can have a deterrent effect, but what do you do when they laws themselves allow the lynching?

This is why ALL of our rights are so important. The right to be tried by your peers, which guarantees that the people can overrule an unjust law, the right to speak out and spread the word of injustices, the right to keep arms in the event that the other rights are ignored or trampled upon. Sure, that last right is not needed at this moment, but once it is needed, it is too late to ask for it.

Protect the Second Amendment, for it protects the others.

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The founders on the enumerated powers

Every time a law is passed, whether that law is free health care, bailouts, or any other thing, and a person asks where Congress gets the authority to enact such a law, the response is almost always the “general welfare” clause, or the “interstate commerce” clause. Let’s see what James Madison, one of our founding fathers, had to say about that

If Congress can employ money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands; they may appoint teachers in every State, county and parish and pay them out of their public treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the Union; they may assume the provision of the poor; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post-roads; in short, every thing, from the highest object of state legislation down to the most minute object of police, would be thrown under the power of Congress…. Were the power of Congress to be established in the latitude contended for, it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of the limited Government established by the people of America.

What about the commerce clause?

The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation and foreign commerce…no state be at liberty to impose duties on any goods, wares, or merchandise, imported, by land or by water, from any other state, but may altogether prohibit the importation from any state of any particular species or description of goods, wares, or merchandise, of which the importation is at the same time prohibited from all other places whatsoever.

Hmmm. Looks like Federal Government control is not what the FFs meant when they wrote the commerce and general welfare clauses.

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Ingrates

When I have a financial deal with a person, the only responsibility that I have is to complete the deal according to the terms of the agreement. For example, if I buy a car from a dealer, and his home burns to the ground, am I morally obligated to stop by and give him more money than agreed upon? Of course not.

If I drop by the dealership, and donate clothes, food, and money, would it be ungrateful of him to complain that it wasn’t enough? Or should everyone at least be happy that I donated what I could spare?

Apparently, that is not true if you are a cruise line, and one of your ports of call is in Haiti. Nevermind that Royal Caribbean enriched Haitians to the tune of $55 million during construction of the facilities in Labadee, Haiti. Nevermind that Royal Caribbean directly and indirectly employs over 500 people at the facilities in Haiti, people who would be unemployed if the cruise line stopped going to the port. All of this activity injects millions into the local economy every year. What else does Royal Caribbean owe the people of Haiti?