Saturday, December 31, 2011
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
...OR THEY GET IT AND DON'T CARE
Don’t these morons know there’s a deficit out there?
Separate but Equal
Rep. Laura Richardson (D-Calif.) has proposed legislation that would let fire stations around the country apply for grants of up to $100,000 to build women's restrooms, showers and changing facilities.
The Fairness in Restrooms Existing in Stations (FIRE Stations) Act says these grants would help promote gender equity in fire houses (VIA the Department of Homeland Security). The findings of the legislation says most were built with a "single-gender workforce" in mind, that 50 percent of all fire departments do not have any female employees, and that women make up just 3.7 percent of all firefighters.
The bill limits grants to $100,000 per fire station, but does not put any final limit on the amount that could be spent. Instead, it authorizes the appropriation of "such sums as may be necessary to carry out this Act."
Vere Are Your Papers?!?
“The TSA isn’t just for airports anymore. TSA teams are increasingly conducting searches and screenings at train stations, subways, ferry terminals and other mass transit locations around the country…
The TSA's 25 "viper" teams — for Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response — have run more than 9,300 unannounced checkpoints and other search operations in the last year. Department of Homeland Security officials asked Congress for funding to add 12 more teams next year.
According to budget documents, the department spent $110 million in fiscal 2011 for "surface transportation security," including the TSA's viper program, and is asking for an additional $24 million next year. That compares with more than $5 billion for aviation security…
But critics say that without a clear threat, the TSA checkpoints are merely political theater. Privacy advocates worry that the agency is stretching legal limits on the government's right to search U.S. citizens without probable cause — and with no proof that the scattershot checkpoints help prevent attacks.
"It's a great way to make the public think you are doing something," said Fred H. Cate, a professor at the Indiana University Maurer School of Law, who writes on privacy and security. "It's a little like saying, 'If we start throwing things up in the air, will they hit terrorists?' ''
Oh, Never Mind the Papers
The United States Senate, as always upholding their oath to support and defend the Constitution, gave us a Christmas present in the form of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2011 (NDAA), passing it by a vote of 86-14. This odious act, “…allows for the indefinite military detention of American citizens without charge or trial.”
Tiny ray of Sunshine: Montanans have announced the launch of recall campaigns against Senators Max Baucus and Jonathan Tester, who voted for the bill, but nothing will come of it.
For Me but not for Thee
Santa Obama gave himself and his poor little deprived family a little gift over the holidays, a 17-day vacation at the Moana Surfrider in Waikiki, one of Hawaii’s most luxurious resorts. Estimated (known) cost to you and I: $4,113,038.
Right there with him in the Aloha State was our gal, that great crusader for the poor, Nancy Pelosi (net worth $58 million). This was her third Christmas vacation at the exotic Four Seasons Resort Hualalai, where she had to put up with a lousy $10,000 per night suite. Local taxpayers costs for police protection: $34,000. Cost to U.S. taxpayers?????
Nancy had planned to attend a Christmas midnight mass at St. Michael’s in Kailu-Kona, but she kept bursting into flame when she got within 100 meters of the church. Firefighting costs unknown.
Remember when the Press used to bitch about Nancy Reagan spending too much money? Where are they now?
The Haves and the Have-Nots
By the way, it’s easier to see how politicians of all stripes can piss away money in such large sums so quickly. They’re right up there amongst those evil, idle rich who don’t create jobs.
- Median net worth of member of Congress rose from $280,000 to $725,000 between 1984 and 2009
- Over same 25 years the wealth of the average U.S. family slipped from $20,500 from $20,600
The Solution? Spend Mo’ Money!
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House plans to ask Congress by the end of the week for an increase in the government's debt ceiling to allow the United States to pay its bills on time, according to a senior Treasury Department official on Tuesday.
The debt limit currently stands at $15.194 trillion and would increase to $16.394 trillion with the request.
The Republic is on life support, they’re about to pull the plug, and they just don't give a rat's ass.
Monday, December 26, 2011
So, having not owned a home since about 1995, and that one having had axles underneath it, my beloved Wife Mk. II and I recently learned the ins-and-outs of the new & improved home financing system. I was not amused.
Part of the problem, actually a great big fat part of the problem, was the lending institution we chose; Crapital Mortgage in Missoula, MT. We went in a couple of months before we even started looking at homes to get a pre-approval on a loan and see what price-range we could qualify for, filled out all the reams of paperwork, jumped through all the hoops. All was fine ‘n’ dandy we were told. OK, we figured we were good to go and went shopping in our price range.
In hindsight, I should have known it was going to be a clusterfudge. The little gal who processed our pre-approval did indeed have great assets, but her math never seemed to come out the same twice in a row. That and the fact that the first time we visited that mortgage company, I peeked in the window before we entered and saw everybody running around the place poking each other in the eye balls and going, “Woop! Woop! Woop!” and “Nyuk! Nyuk! Nyuk!”
Anyway, as I said, we went through the whole nine yards of pre-approval which one would think meant a loan in a certain price range would be, well, pre-approved. It is, until you actually make an offer on a house and it’s accepted. Then all of a sudden, all these little details start popping up, the need for this paperwork or that form or the other statement. Ours came up two days before closing, when the previous owners had already moved out, the moving company was coming, the electric and gas and mail and phone was changing over, etc.
It seems we needed Form # 4782A1 Mk. IV, (w/winch), 1 ea, or whatever the hell it was. One might imagine that a company in the business of processing loans and had been doing it for years might have, say, a checklist of the necessary forms, credit checks, assets, statements, etc. required. That way, they could actually look at the checklist ahead of time and request the documents needed, perhaps even prior to the closing date. One would be wrong in thinking that.
So anyway, months after we were “pre-approved” and finally put an offer on a house in our price range, this kind of shit kept ("No, that was Form # 4782A1 Mk. IV without winch.") coming up at the last minute. Two days before Closing Date #2 something else came up we had to rush to get via fax at the last minute. By then the movers weren’t going to reschedule at the last moment AGAIN, so I stayed home with them while my wife drove 3 hours to Bozeman to sign a paper which, of course, wasn’t actually there yet, so she had to drive 3 hours back. Finally, the next day, with all our possessions in a moving truck somewhere on I-90, we finished closing on the home. We got there at 0830 in the morning and quickly had the keys by 1600 that afternoon.
In addition to the paperwork, we were distressed that the numbers the mortgage company giving us never once matched or added up the same way twice. Being mathematically impaired, I can see the numbers not always adding up. In such case, however, even I’m smart enough to run the numbers over and check the math. Kind of like that old carpenters' adage, "Measure twice, cut once." But then I’m not a state-licensed blonde with huge “tracts of land”.
The whole ordeal was almost like dealing with a government bureaucracy. Almost, but not quite, and some of the hang-ups came from the government.
For instance, there is apparently a new government regulation designed to help the long-since floundered and capsized real estate and lending industry stay submerged. It stipulates you have to cancel your credit cards to get your loan. WTF? It doesn’t matter if you pay your credit down to ZERO at the end of every month and have never had so much as a late payment. So, by buying your own home, you actually hurt your credit score and have to go re-apply for the same credit you’ve had for years a week or so later.
I guess the Nanny State doesn’t want you to take out a big home mortgage and then immediately max out all your credit cards by running off on a “fact-finding junket” to the Caribbean or a “diplomatic” visit to South Africa. It’s not like you, my dear peasant, can cover such expenses with kick-backs, lobbyists, abuse of taxpayer funds, or running a gay prostitution ring out of your posh Washington, D.C. apartment.
Speaking of gay prostitutes, it was our old pal from Taxassachusetts, Rep. Bawney Fwank, who helped the whole housing market collapse right along by refusing to plug the drain when the water started swirling. A certain previous administration wanted to create a new regulatory agency within the Treasury Department to keep a tighter rein on what Fannie and Freddie were up to. Normally, I’m against any new regulatory agency, but at the time Fannie & Freddie were "supervised" by CONGRESS, which, to paraphrase P.J. O'Rorke, is like teenage boys “supervising” the liquor cabinet and the car keys. Opposing the very thought of someone other than Congress "supervising" these entities, Bawney Fwank, ranking member of the House Financial Services Committee at the time, assured us this was not necessary. And I quote:
''These two entities -- Fannie Mae and Fweddie Mac -- are not facing any kind of financiaw cwisis. The mowe people exaggewate these pwoblems, the mowe pressuwe thewe is on these companies, the wess we wiwl see in tewms of affowdable housing.''
While I have no doubt the Fannie & Freddie CEOs were greedy little bastards not adverse the fudging figures and intent on lining their own nests, let's not forget that Fanny & Freddie are GSE's, Government Sponsored Enterprises, and thus required to meet "affordable housing goals" set annually by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and approved by Congress.
In plain and simple terms, they had to approve subprime loans to the kind of people who list food stamps and an old Camaro up on blocks in the yard as "assets" and a meth lab as "source of income". Lo and behold, such people defaulted on said loans, toppling the whole house of cards.
Government stepped right in to fix things, by backing up a line of dump trucks to pour taxpayer money into Fannie and Freddy. The CEOs were accused by Congress and the MSM of "Knowing and approving of misleading statements." BWAHAHAHA! Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. Yes, the CEOs were a bunch of despicable pricks but, like a bookie who shares his income with the local Mafioso, they thought they could get away with it because they "had protection." That protection came from (surprise!) Congress.
The book All the Devils Are Here took a long hard look at how GSE's, Fannie in particular, operated hand-in-hand with Congress in a case of what might be called symbiotic crony capitalism.
"Tactics included a massive lobbying effort, neutering the OFHEO (its 1992-created regulator), creating a 'partnership office' network to court the politically powerful with pork, giving high level employment to the well connected, giving out campaign contributions, creating a charity foundation, and threatening critics like FM Watch with retaliation. One [source from book] compared Fannie's activities to Tammany Hall."
No matter the root cause, I figured the collapse would have culled the herd so to speak, weeding out the sick, lame and lazy, leaving only solid lending institutions who knew what they hell they were doing. This is why I get in trouble for thinking.
Apparently, since the government stepped in to "fix" things, the pendulum has swung wildly in the other direction when it comes to us "under-represented" demographics qualifying for a loan. Formerly, a single mother with 17 kids who listed employment as "part-time exotic dancer" could get approved for loans in excess of $500,000. Now apparently you have to own two blocks in downtown Manhattan for collateral and attend at least three $5,000 per plate "charity" dinners supporting your favorite politician (check the sub-clause; one of those dinners had to serve Endangered Chilean Sea Bass au Gore.) I can tell you that credit scores in the high 700's, no debt, and owning all your own assets doesn't mean shit.
So I must advise you strongly to do your homework on your lending institution. Just because they’re all licensed by the state and have a nice office with realistic-looking diplomas from the Las Vegas School of Business & Blackjack on the wall doesn’t mean much.
Rather than Crapital Mortgage Co., I would recommend a much more efficient lending institution known as Vito & Vinnie. They have a small office on Third and Elm; just look for a late-model white Cadillac with the trunk open. Be aware, as a rather exclusive firm, their business hours are limited, right around shift-change time for the local police department IIRC.
Their math always comes out the same way twice, especially if it involves the number of fingers broken. But at least you close on your new home the first time around.
I found the basement a little cramped for my reloading bench and gunsmithing hobbies.
Sunday, December 11, 2011
Why might this by the last Religion of Peace Update? Well, because the OIC and the UN (and of course the Obama Regime) are taking the first steps to OUTLAW CRITICISM OF ISLAM.
There you have it boys and girls. Soon you may not be able to say anything a Muslim might dislike. And of course the Obama Regime wants to hop on board to see how the U.S. can "criminalize criticism of Islam." Pay no attention to that First Amendment behind the curtain!The OIC is the largest head of state organization in the world after the United Nations (UN) itself and comprises 56 Muslim countries plus the Palestinians. It claims to be the "collective voice of the Muslim world," i.e., the ummah, and speaks on its behalf in effect as the seat of the next Islamic Caliphate. In 1990, the OIC membership adopted the "Cairo Declaration," which officially exempted all Muslim countries from compliance with the UN Universal Declaration on Human Rights and replaced it with Islamic law (shariah).One of the fundamental laws of Islam deals with "slander," which is defined in shariah as saying "anything concerning a person [a Muslim] that he would dislike." At the OIC's Third Extraordinary Session, held in Mecca, Saudi Arabia in December 2005, the organization adopted a Ten-Year Programme of Action to Meet the Challenges Facing the Muslim Ummah in the 21st Century." A key agenda item of that meeting was "the need to counter Islamophobia" by seeking to have the UN "…adopt an international resolution to counter Islamophobia, and call upon all States to enact laws to counter it, including deterrent punishments." The word "Islamophobia" is a completely invented word, coined by the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), a Muslim Brotherhood (Ikhwan) front group. OIC adoption of the term reflects the close operational relationship between the OIC and the Ikhwan.Six years later, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is due to host OIC Secretary General Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu in Washington, DC in mid-December 2011 to discuss how the United States can implement the OIC agenda to criminalize criticism of Islam.
Of course you already figured the good ol' United Nations, which hasn't really done anything worth a shit since about 1950, was in on it. UNESCO recently voted 107 to 15 to admit the Palestinians as a member. Why the United States taxpayer has to fund 22%--roughly $80,000,000 a year--of this for-shit do-nothing organization that hates our guts is waaayyyy beyond my pay grade. Sure makes you miss Ronald Reagan. He cut American funding to UNESCO; it was not Bill Clinton but "conservative" George W. Bush who re-instated that funding after 20 years. Well, we have so much extra money just lying around collecting dust, why not?
For those who don't know how the UN actually works, here is a simple synopsis which explains it, short and sweet.
"White man come in great iron bird. Slay simba with fire-stick. Make Chief Umbulla senior member of United Nations Security Council."
So, while you can't say anything a Muslim would dislike, if you are a Muslim, feel free to kill and butcher thousands of Christians around the world, or anyone who pisses you off, or merely annoys you, or happens to be present when you set off an IED. To paraphrase the most cerebral president's well-thought-out and intellectual call to action in 2008, "Yes you can!"
Meanwhile, here's your Religion of Peace update thus far for December 2011, while I can still mention it with being arrested and beheaded.
2011.12.10 Sham, Pakistan: Terrorists take down a child and injure three women with a landmine.
2011.12.10 Jos, Nigeria: Islamists bomb an outdoor bar showing a soccer match on TV, killing at least one fan.
2011.12.10 Khakrez, Afghanistan: Sunni bombers murder three civilians riding a taxi.
2011.12.10 Kunduz, Afghanistan: Islamists attach a bomb to a bicycle that manages to kill two innocents.
2011.12.10 Landikotal, Pakistan: Religious extremists tear down two Sufi shrines and murder an elderly caretaker.
2011.12.09 Karachi, Pakistan: A 45-year-old Shia man is gunned down in his own home by Wahhabis.
2011.12.09 Yala, Thailand: Militant Muslims shoot a 28-year-old man to death outside a rubber plantation.
2011.12.09 Ghazi Abad, Afghanistan: A Shahid suicide bomber detonates inside a mosque, killing six.
2011.12.07 Dammaj, Yemen: Sunni Islamists open fire on a group of Shia, killing three. 2011.12.07 Pattani, Thailand: A Buddhist cop is murdered by a Muslim drive-by.
2011.12.07 Sangin, Afghanistan: Holy Warriors massacre nineteen bus passengers, including five children, with a landmine.
2011.12.07 Kaduna, Nigeria: Very young children are among the casualties of a Shahid suicide bombing in a commercial district.
2011.12.06 Mazar-i-Sharif, Afghanistan: Four Shiites leaving a mosque are sent straight to Allah by Sunni bicycle bombers.
2011.12.06 Kabul, Afghanistan: About eighty Shiite pilgrims, including women and children, are torn to shreds outside a shrine by a Sunni wearing an explosives vest packed with ball bearings.
2011.12.06 Kirkuk, Iraq: Sunnis fire mortars at a Shia mosque, killing one occupant.
2011.12.06 Mogadishu, Somalia: Fedayeen suicide bomber scatters the body parts of at least four victims along a city street.
2011.12.06 Pulwama, India: Islamic militants abduct and murder a civilian.
2011.12.05 Baghdad, Iraq: A Sunni roadside bomb attack on a Shia procession leaves eight pilgrims dead.
2011.12.05 Maiduguri, Nigeria: Two people praying at a mosque are gunned down by Religion of Peace rivals.
2011.12.05 Hillah, Iraq: Two dozen pilgrims, mostly women and children, are ripped apart by three Sunni car bombs.
2011.12.05 , Kohat, Pakistan: Muslim militants fire a rocket into a market, killing two people. 2011.12.05 Bosaso, Somalia: al-Shabaab extremists gun down a rival cleric at a mosque. 2011.12.05 Chora, Afghanistan: Four children and a woman are dismantled by a Taliban roadside bomb.
2011.12.05 Latifiyah, Iraq: Sunni bombers take down two Shiite pilgrims on foot.
2011.12.04 Bayaa, Iraq: Sunni bombers manage to take down a Shia pilgrim on foot.
2011.12.04 Bauchi, Iraq: A boy is among six people killed by a Boko Haram bombing and shooting attack..
2011.12.03 Jaffarabad, Pakistan: Two people are shot to death on suspicion of 'illicit relations'. 2011.12.03 Boraldai, Kazakhstan: Two policemen are shot to death by a group of Muslim radicals.
2011.12.03 Zakho, Iraq: Thrity-two people are injured during a rampage by fundamentalists against Christian-owned businesses.
2011.12.03 Zinjibar,Yemen: Five local soldiers are taken out in a brutal al-Qaeda ambush. 2011.12.03 Baghdad, Iraq: A man and his wife are murdered by Islamist gunmen.
2011.12.03 Baaj, Iraq: Three brothers are shot to death in their home by Sunni militants. 2011.12.03 Maiduguri, Nigeria: Boko Haram Islamists fire into a wedding ceremony, killing the groom and a guest.
2011.12.03 Karachi, Pakistan: Two men are shot to death by sectarian Jihadis.
2011.12.03 Iskandariya, Iraq: Three innocent people are killed by an 'insurgent' roadside bomb.
2011.12.02 Taji, Iraq: al-Qaeda bombers take down four Iraqis, including a man and his mother.
2011.12.02 Landi Kotal, Pakistan: Two peace committee members are murdered by armed radicals.
2011.12.02 al-Sharqat, Iraq: Three civilian defense volunteers are machine-gunned at a checkpoint by al-Qaeda.
2011.12.02 Ghayl, Yemen: al-Qaeda gunmen spray the inside of a coffee shop with bullets, leaving at least two dead.
2011.12.02 Logar, Afghanistan: A suicide truck bomber kills a carpenter and injures about eighty others.
2011.12.02 Khyber, Pakistan: Three women and two children are killed in the crossfire between two Islamist groups.
2011.12.01 Iraq Khalis 10 25 Ten patrons at a vegetable market are ripped apart by a well-placed bomb.
2011.12.01 Jil al-Said, Iraq: al-Qaeda gunmen pull eight people from their homes, line them up against the wall and shoot them.
2011.12.01 Yala, Thailand: A local soldier is killed by a bomb planted by Islamic 'insurgents'.
And remember, gang. Only thirteen killing days left 'til Christmas. Before it's outlawed too.
Thursday, December 01, 2011
“When they started out, they couldn’t shoot. They didn’t know their weapons. They had not had enough training in plain old-fashioned musketry. They’d spent a lot of time listening to lectures on the differences between Communism and Americanism and not enough time crawling on their bellies on maneuvers with live ammunition singing over them.”
Colonel John “Mike” Michaels, 27th "Wolfhounds" Infantry Regiment, Pusan, Korea, 1950.
To most folks, that would sound like a training and doctrine failure. Pentagon weenies are not most folks, though. Their solution to every problem for the past few decades has been to spend billions on super-duper high-tech wonder weapons capable of taking the individual soldier’s ability out of the equation as much as possible. Anything but better training, especially in marksmanship, which might expend too many rounds costing a quarter apiece.
As one modern marksmanship trainer who has been trying to jam in an intense 1 or 2-day shooting refresher for troops deploying overseas noted recently, it seems the Pentagon would rather pay for USGI Life Insurance benefits than small arms ammunition. I know that in 4 years of active Army and 9 in the Guard I never, ever, once had any refresher marksmanship training...even when I offered to give it.
The myth of the American male being a “natural shooter” died hard. I know of plenty of guys who still haven’t gotten the word. To my mind, the Korean War sounded the death knell for the American infantryman as a real rifleman. Troops initially sent to stop the North Korean invasion were men stationed on occupation duty in post-WWII-Japan. They were out-of-shape, poorly-trained, ignorant of their equipment, much of which was in poor repair, and just plain soft. When it came to the art of the rifle, even the reinforcements and recruits fresh from training who were rushed to the conflict weren’t much better.
Military historian General S.L.A. Marshall, after numerous studies and interviews, came to the statistical conclusion that, “The great killing zone for the rifle is at less than 200 yards.” Which was no doubt true in Korea. Those who latched onto the 200-yard-range figure used it as proof that the soldier did not need a weapon capable of an effective range beyond 300 meters, such as a small caliber assault rifle.
But SLAM also added a few caveats that seem to have been ignored.
“But an arm which was not reasonably accurate at ranges well in excess of that would shift too large a part of the burden to the heavier weapons of the infantry during the enemy approach and withdrawal…Rifle practice at the longer ranges is still desirable. But the rifleman needs about five times the amount of practice now given him with live ammunition if the weapon’s potential is to be fully exploited in combat.”
Increased training? Expending live ammunition on the range? Surely, he jested. What kind of solution is that?
From men who could already shoot well…long-time hunters, high-power match competitors, or simply self-taught shooters…being able to “shoot up to the rifle” meant something with the M1 Garand.
“The engagement range could run from 500 yards down to right outside my hole. I knocked people down right outside my foxhole and I shot them at 500 yards.”
“With the M1, you could engage targets out to 500 yards. Since I had qualified expert with the M1, I could hit targets that far out.”
“I made shots out to 600 to 700 yards…There was no doubt about it; I was good with the M1. It just fascinated me that the rifle could do those things at those ranges.”
With the exception of some Marine Corps units, marksmanship training and abilities of the average GI was almost universally piss poor. One post-war analysis by an American Army officer found:
“Firepower was also degraded by the failure of training to focus on marksmanship. ‘During World War II and the postwar period, there was a tendency in the Army to substitute volume of fire for marksmanship.’ During the Korean War many infantry units did not place effective fire on the enemy. Effective by means of ‘the old “shoot to kill” tradition.’ One study concluded that 67 percent of the men questioned said that they aimed, on average, only one round out of an 8 round clip.
‘One infantryman expressed a theory, apparently held by many, that the job of the M-1 carbine rifleman is primarily to pour out as much lead as possible to keep the enemy’s head down.’ The study also discovered that one third of the soldiers questioned never zeroed their weapons while stationed in Korea. Although infantrymen indicated that weapons training was the most valuable skill they acquired, the lessons of rifle marksmanship were lost on the battlefields of Korea.”
A great many soldiers were just handed a rifle and never even got the chance to zero it. Even if they knew why and how, it was often no thanks to their training if they did. Firing a rifle that has not been zeroed for the individual, even the best marksman could potentially miss a man-sized target at 100 yards, and the error increases exponentially as range increases. If one is 4 inches off at 100 yards, he is 8 inches off at 200, and 16 at 300, 32 at 400, etc. Which doesn’t even take into account the individual shooter’s proficiency.
"Sight picture is no good without a zero."
The stories of poor small arms training during the Korean War era are endemic.
Basic Training at Fort Dix, NJ in 1947:
“We did very little weapons training there. We didn’t even have weapons until two weeks before range firing. Before that we just had sticks…The marksmanship training we got wasn’t very good. Most of it was on proper sight alignment, which was the most important thing. We also did a lot of dry firing behind the range. The bad thing was that they didn’t reach us proper zeroing techniques. The problem was they didn’t have experienced cadre, most of the trainers were corporals.”
Camp Breckenridge, KY, 1952:
“We trained on all the infantry weapons, but very little. Not enough to say we were experts on any of them. It was more a familiarization on most of them.”
Camp Crowder, MO:
“If you shot expert [a basic trainee], they made you cadre. That’s how hard up they were to find people to train the new troops who were being drafted.”
Ft. Dix again:
“The training wasn’t that good; the sergeant and corporal instructing us did not know how to shoot. All they did was rattle off a bunch of instructions and scream and holler at us. If the NCO’s didn’t know how to shoot, how could you expect them to teach us how to shoot?...At Dix, they were more interested in us scrubbing them in hot, soapy water and standing inspection with the damned things.”
Other veterans made statements such as:
“I was issued a rifle and allowed to fire 50 rounds familiarization with it.”
“We were issued some weapons in California and everybody fired different weapons off the tail of the ship [en route to the Korean battlefields]…They’d throw trash over the side and we shot at it…We zeroed our rifles while we were on the ship, or we attempted to zero them…It was real flaky…”
“We took a Merchant Marine ship to Japan. I remember we did some rifle training on the ship. We practiced our firing techniques from different positions firing live ammo into the sea.”
Needless to say, with this kind of training, the average GI’s shooting wasn’t exactly Sergeant Alvin York-ish.
Another of the Army’s own official post-war studies concluded: “The costly design precision and long-range accuracy of the M1 rifle are of doubtful value to the average infantryman…A marked decrease in the hit probability for all types of riflemen occurs at ranges between 100 and 300 yards.”
“Data on the incidence of gunshot wounds (as well as study of the visibility of man-size targets on the battlefield) show that there is actually a limited requirement for delivering rifle fire at ranges exceeding 300 yards. This does not mean, however, that there is no requirement for such fire at greater ranges.”
“Fully automatic or rapid semi-automatic fire does not increase the burst hit probability beyond that of the single (first) round. [emphasis added]”
“Suffice to say now that any trend toward eliminating the semi-automatic, hand-carried weapons in favor of full-automatic weapons in the hands of all infantrymen should be vigorously combated....
On the basis of their experience, they would not concur in any suggestion that the line could be strengthened by fitting it exclusively with full-automatic power."
Such was based upon the fact than in numerous infantry battles in Korea, the full-automatic weapons...the machine guns, BAR's, and M2 carbines...had burned up all their ammo fairly early in the firefight and gone dry, leaving the issue to be settled in the last few minutes and last few yards by the semiautomatic M1 Garands.
In addition to the poor marksmanship training, troops of the era also had pretty bad training in maintaining their weapons in the field, understanding how their weapons worked and knowing what they could really do.
The solution to such a dilemma? Well, some damn fools such as yourself or myself might think that increased training and live-fire practice would fix the problem. That’s why we don’t get paid the big bucks and have stars on our shoulders like those guys working in the Pentagon, and don’t get even bigger bucks after retiring from the military to work as a “consultant” for a large defense contractor.
No sirree, Bawb. The solution lies in multi-gazillion dollar uber techno weapons development that tries to take the human equation, i.e. the soldier, and his abilities or lack thereof out of the picture altogether, or at least as much as possible. And remember, as Jeff Cooper summed up the modern military definition of firepower, "If you can't shoot well, shoot a lot!"
To get a feel for just how our military-industrial weapons "development" and "procurement" process works, see the the multi-billion dollar fiasco of the 1980's M247 Sergeant York DIVAD SP anti-aircraft gun, which thankfully died before it could perform in combat as it did in testing. The Sgt York, BTW, never even came close to the existing off-the-shelf West German Gepard Flakpanzer (adopted in 1972) or the Soviet ZSU-23-4 Shilka (1965), both of which are still in use around the world even today. No matter how much you polish a turd (and throw money at it) it's still a turd.
For the best and most entertaining example of how the Pentagon-Defense Industry symbiotic relationship truly works, get the movie Pentagon Wars starring Kelsey Grammar and Cary Elwes. It's definitely worth the watch.
Meanwhile, us ignorant hicks can just go attend an Appleseed, put in more dry-firing and launch more bullets downrange and make our old-fashioned "junk" weapons quite effective.
The climate religion fades in spasms of anger and twitches of boredom.
"Consider the case of global warming, another system of doomsaying prophecy and faith in things unseen.
As with religion, it is presided over by a caste of spectacularly unattractive people pretending to an obscure form of knowledge that promises to make the seas retreat and the winds abate. As with religion, it comes with an elaborate list of virtues, vices and indulgences. As with religion, its claims are often non-falsifiable, hence the convenience of the term "climate change" when thermometers don't oblige the expected trend lines. As with religion, it is harsh toward skeptics, heretics and other "deniers." And as with religion, it is susceptible to the earthly temptations of money, power, politics, arrogance and deceit.
This week, the conclave of global warming's cardinals are meeting in Durban, South Africa, for their 17th conference in as many years. The idea is to come up with a successor to the Kyoto Protocol, which is set to expire next year, and to require rich countries to pony up $100 billion a year to help poor countries cope with the alleged effects of climate change. This is said to be essential because in 2017 global warming becomes "catastrophic and irreversible," according to a recent report by the International Energy Agency.
Yet a funny thing happened on the way to the climate apocalypse. Namely, the financial apocalypse.
The U.S., Russia, Japan, Canada and the EU have all but confirmed they won't be signing on to a new Kyoto. The Chinese and Indians won't make a move unless the West does. The notion that rich (or formerly rich) countries are going to ship $100 billion every year to the Micronesias of the world is risible, especially after they've spent it all on Greece."
PSSSSTTT! Somebody tell the Aussies.