Quote of the day—Terri Conley

If you inch towards suggesting that people who do something other than monogamy might not be miserable or that they might have some advantages, they were just so hostile to that. I found that really fascinating.

Terri Conley
August 4, 2020
How One Psychologist Upended Everything We Know About Women, Sex, & Monogamy
[As well as being fascinating I think making people uncomfortable with clear factual data is great fun! I love doing it with the stupidity of gun laws as well as human psychology.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Daniel Greenfield

It’s not the Confederacy, long defeated, they are out to kill, but the thing that all radicals hate the most, the moderate ideas on their own side that compete with them for the hearts and minds of their base.

The mobs aren’t just here to smash up old Confederate officers. They’re out to destroy Lincoln and Grant, to tear down the Columbus statues erected by Italian immigrant groups who wanted to plant a civic flag to show they belonged, and the statues of assorted Union officers put up by other patriotic immigrant groups to show that they too had a place in the nation.

And what the mobs are out to destroy, most of all, is that old liberal vision of America. And, by the time they’re done, if there are any liberals still left, they will throw them in the same rivers and fires in which they’re casting those old symbols of progress, the explorer who defied the skeptics, the men who envisioned a representative republic, the emancipation of the slaves, and a modern America.

The mobs are coming for our history and our future. They’re coming for America and for progress. Americans used to believe that things will get better. The mobs are here to destroy that hope.

Daniel Greenfield
June 26, 2020
When Marxist Mobs Come for the Liberals
[This is somewhat consistent with what happened in the Russian Revolution. Once power was consolidated the moderates were executed.

We live in interesting times.—Joe]

Beirut explosion

Via MSN:

A large cache of explosive material seized by the government years ago was stored where the explosions occurred, according to top Lebanese officials — specifically ammonium nitrate…

The cache was estimated to be 2,750 tons. Boomershoot uses about 1 ton each year. Timothy McVeigh used (IIRC) about 2.5 tons in the Oklahoma City bombing.

This is the best video I’ve seen so far:

Incredible tragedy. I’m sure the death toll will rise for many days. And of course the property damage will be horrendous as well.

As Boomershooter Aaron M. said in email:

Check out that white in that explosion. Remind you of something? They are now saying it was something like 2000 tons of ammonium nitrate. It looks correct for that.

I agree. The white “smoke” is probably the water vapor from the ammonium nitrate decomposition.*

* NH4NO3 –> N2 + 2H2O + 1/2 O2

Quote of the day—Sam Jacobs

Most Americans have never heard of these acts of terrorism from leftist groups that were so numerous throughout the 1970s. But this is a prime example of “those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” The urban unrest, which has rocked America in the early 2020s, is nothing new. The 1960s saw both race riots and left-wing terrorist groups looking to exploit animosity between racial groups in America.

The question is what are we going to do about it? The answer so far from our elected officials is “not much.” If leftist terrorist cells were willing to go this far when they had active opposition from government and corporate figures alike, what are they going to do when confronted with apathy or encouragement from elected officials and the business sector?

The answer remains to be seen, but will certainly be some variant of “nothing good.”

Sam Jacobs
July 2020
America’s “Days of Rage”: The Extensive Left-Wing Bombings & Domestic Terrorism of the 1970s
[See also:

It’s a great book with surprising parallels to the current leftist violence..—Joe]

Quote of the day—Elyssa Khalifé

So here is what happened yesterday at the “protest.” We were waiting and watching live from the precinct as the rioters set 5 portable construction offices on fire. They then completely destroyed, looted, and lit the Starbucks on 12 ave and E Cherry St. on fire. As the group was walking they were breaking random car windows, car prowling, and spray painting everything…

They made their way to the East precinct with all of us inside. They spray painted the building, tried to break the fence, they threw a mortar that left an 8 inch hole in the wall… We could see a person pouring gasoline around the building that we were occupying, which is when all of us came out. We commanded people to “move back” as we advanced. People who assaulted us were arrested. We formed a line guarding the block. People threw paint, rocks, metal, frozen water bottles, glass and improvised EXPLOSIVES at us which is when we used our dispersal tools. In the process I was injured along with 20 other officers. Yes, I was injured even though I was wearing shin guards, and other protective gear.

The puzzling part is people were chanting “I don’t see no riot here, take off your riot gear.”

Why didn’t we deploy and stop them when the looting started? Our instructions were not to respond to property damage. The fire department was delayed in response because of the big hostile crowd but they made it and started putting out fires. We only responded when they were about to literally burn down our precinct with everyone in it and the connecting apartment complexes. This is insane. I don’t know what the message here is anymore. These people were 99% white and young. They were saying the most horrible things you can imagine to officers of color. They were also assaulting each other in the crowd. I saw signs and shirts that indicated Anarchy, Anti-Christ, abolishing religion, bringing down the government, defund/abolish SPD, defunding Seattle Parks and Rec (huh?), abolishing America?! I don’t think that the point to those riots is anything but inflicting as much damage and injury as possible.

About my injury: I sustained a torn medial meniscus and I most probably will require surgery to be able to live an active lifestyle again.

Elyssa Khalifé
City of Bothell Police Officer
Posted on Facebook July 26, 2020
[This is about what happened in Seattle.

It’s not so “puzzling” to me. The bigger the lie…

The stories of the “weak government” of pre-Nazi Germany keep coming to mind.

These “people” are closer to feral animals. The officials who give orders for the police to not protect property are showing their true colors. Both groups should be dealt with appropriately. They all should be arrested and prosecuted.—Joe]

Lakes trail

We arrived at Mount Rainier National Park on Thursday. Our first hike on the way into the park was thwarted by closed gate on a Forest Service road:


We found a different trail nearby and walked in about a mile or so and crossed a small stream. We found a log to sit on and ate our lunch. It was a hot day and snuggled down in the bottom of the ravine with the creek a few feet from us made it a lot more pleasant.

After lunch we continued on to our campground, set up camp, then ventured out to a nearby trail which promised great views of Mount Rainier and multiple lakes. The temperature climbed to 98F. And we were going to be climbing up a mountain trail. Hmmm… Well, the hiking is what we came for. And it wasn’t going to be any cooler at our campsite.

The view of the mountain from Reflection Lake was nice and was visible from the parking area:


Continue reading

The mountain has a hat

In the last few months I’ve occasionally posted about Mount Rainier 50 miles to the south of where Barb and I live. Last year at this time we went camping and hiking on the mountain. Last Thursday went back to the same campground for more camping and hiking in Mount Rainier National Park. We returned home yesterday.

One of our big joys was to see Mount Rainier up close with a “hat’”: Over 30% of the pictures Barb took are of this “hat”. Although my percentage is lower I took 27 pictures of the mountain with its “hat”.


Continue reading

Quote of the day—James Rickards

But getting back to Biden’s solid lead in polling, should we just cede the election to him — and his VP candidate who’d probably be in power within a year?

Not so fast. For over 80 years, pollsters have asked two key questions in election polling. The first is, “Who are you voting for?”

That’s the intention question. The second question is, “Who do you expect to win?” That’s the expectation question.

The answer to the intention question gets all the headlines. Those are the polling results we describe above. The answer to the expectation question gets buried and is scarcely discussed.

But guess what? In cases where the intention and expectation questions have different answers, (in effect, “I’m voting for A, but I expect B to win”), the expectation answer had the correct result 78% of the time.

The intention question had the correct result only 22% of the time.

And, Trump is leading the expectation question right now 55% to 45% for Biden. So, Trump actually is ahead in the polls. You just have to be looking at the right polls. That’s key. So don’t write Trump off just yet.

James Rickards
July 27, 2020
How Secure Is Biden’s Lead?
[Interesting! Very, very interesting.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Jayant Bhandari

Western culture, which developed organically over at least the two and half millennia, starting from Greco-Roman philosophers, is not easy to duplicate. This culture requires thrift, honesty, hard work, liberty, individuality, dispassionate reason, objective justice, loyalty, honor, stoicism, a desire to rise above oneself, and many other factors that perhaps cannot be seen or isolated but must be absorbed subliminally in all their complex interactions. These are reflected in social, religious, and political structures of the West — the three independent branches of government, the rule of law, compassion for others, charity, family system, etc.

The West and East Asia, including China, comprise a mere 2.5 billion people.

“The Rest,” the Third World, comprises 5 billion out of 7.5 billion people on the planet. The cultural factors underpinning the West sound like clichés until one who gives up political correctness for the truth starts to see that the Third World, despite its several centuries of interactions with the West, simply fails to understand them.

The Third World is blind to what makes the West a civilization. It is as if the Third World cannot rise above animal instincts — craving for food, power over others, sex, and for the material.

Jayant Bhandari
June 24, 2020
The Decline of the Third World
[Via email from Chet.

I have three children. Each of them exhibited personality traits in the first few hours after birth that they still exhibit 30+ years later. I’ve seen an insane, counter productive, behavior by a mother regarded as profoundly brilliant by her children. Then as years passed this behavior gradually blossomed as self-destructive behaviors (literally culminating in multiple suicide attempts) by one of those children despite repeated attempts, over many years, by her spouse to get her professional help. The help was not only refused as unnecessary, it was vigorously asserted it was the spouse who was in need of professional help and behavior modification.

I’m convinced there are aptitudes and personality traits hardwired in the brain which destines certain genetic lines to aspire for, and literally reach, the stars. And other genetic lines which lack the capacity to grasp rational thought or fully understand numbers, let alone arithmetic and math.

These people can’t be reasoned with. They can’t be taught. If those who aspire for the stars are serious about their goals, or even avoiding being dragged into and out of sight into the mud, they must make some uncomfortable decisions very soon.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Victor Davis Hanson

The angry and the demonstrating are loud and visible; their opponents are angry and quiet.

The election will reveal not just who is more numerous — but sadly also who is the angriest.

Victor Davis Hanson
June 24, 2020
2020 Election Will Be a Contest of the Angry
[I have nothing to add.—Joe]

Quote of the day—J. KB

These protesters and activists are the most supremely ignorant people in history.

They literally have the entire wealth of recorded human knowledge at their fingertips. It’s all available online and immediately accessible through the smartphones that they all have.

I can only believe that they have to be willfully ignorant because they should have at least accidentally stumbled onto some bit of knowledge by now.

June 27, 2020
Splatter is coming, Part 5
[And/or lying and/or delusional.

In any case J. KB concludes with:

There is no reasoning with them. That is abundantly clear.

As they used to say “civilize ’em with a Krag.” I have a feeling it will come to that.

I don’t think it has to come to that. I think arrests, convictions, and a few years in prison will help them reconnect with reality. Getting them out of their bubble for even a few months will be therapeutic.

H/T to less fat Dave @BigFatDave for the pointer.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Maj Toure

I believe that more Black people would be alive if they were armed. So when I hear ‘unarmed Black man,’ I’m sad because there should be no such thing.

Maj Toure
Founder Black Guns Matter
July 28, 2020
Black gun ownership rises after pandemic and protests
[From the same article:

Phillip Smith, the president of the National African American Gun Association, told Politico he’s getting 2,000 membership requests per day – what used to be the annual numbers. There are now 90,000 members on the organization’s Facebook page.

This could change the voting demographics. Do these seem like people who are going to vote for someone who says things like:

The idea that we don’t have elimination of assault type weapons, magazines that can hold multiple bullets bullets in them, is absolutely mindless. It is no violation of the Second Amendment. It’s just a bow to the special interests, the gun manufacturers, the NRA.

It’s gotta stop.

It’s Biden that just has to be stopped. The dramatic increase in first time gun purchasers, and, in particular, the increased ownership by black Americans will decrease the likelihood that he will win the election.

We live in historic times.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Stephen Kruiser

The nagging feeling that these putrid progressive cities should be left to riot and rot long enough for people to vote with their feet keeps growing on me.

Stephen Kruiser
July 27, 2020
The Morning Briefing: It Might Be Time to Let the Liberal Riot Hellholes Burn — Let Seattle and Portland Riot Themselves Into Oblivion 
[I suppose one could say, “It worked” for Detroit.

I realize it’s not legal or practical but I fantasize about conditioning such abandonment on the building of a wall around the city to keep the vermin from escaping. It could be the inspiration and location of a movie for someone like Kurt Russell, Escape from Seattle.—Joe]

Living in a bubble

Early yesterday Alien asked:

Random thought: Joe, are you and Barb giving any consideration to relocating?

I mentioned this to Barb as we were getting up and received the expected answer, “No.”

That’s a little more strongly worded than the reality and also deserves a bit of an explanation. Barb and I talked about it some as we went on our morning walk and I took a few pictures to help explain. As we walked along I was struck by the alternate reality she and I are living in compared to downtown Seattle only a few miles away. Barb elaborated with, “We are living in bubble.”

In this picture, a short walk from our house, you can see the U.S. flag on the left edge of the image:


Below is an expanded snip of another flag near the car on the right in the image above:


It’s extremely rare to see a U.S. flag in downtown Seattle. Unless, of course, if someone is burning it.

Here is a common view on our walk:


In the distance to the south you see Mount Rainier which is over 50 miles away. The air is frequently that clear. My cell phone camera doesn’t do it justice but you can almost as frequently Mount Baker 80 miles to the north from another location on our walk.

In the picture below you can see Seattle (click to get higher resolution and see the Space Needle) in the distance the night after the most recent “peaceful protests”. I imagine the couple on their deck reading about the riot in the newspaper as if it had happened 1000 miles away instead of 10.


Our reality is much different from downtown Seattle. The streets and air are clean, the neighbors are polite, the police are responsive, the views in all directions with only a short hike are a joy to behold. There is a lot of territory between us and ground zero of the riots. There are thousands of homes and a large lake between us and the terrorists. The roads into our neighborhood are few with lots of cover and concealment along the sides. It is my belief that there will be a lot of warning and a heck of a lot of “vigorous”  resistance to the terrorists migrating out of their turf into ours. And the primary resistance will be supplied by the local police department who has not been shackled like the Seattle Police.Department. When I was shooting matches I frequently had a Bellevue police officer on my squad. The next chance I get I will ask a few questions about how he thinks an attempt at a riot migration to our side of the lake might turn out.

That said, daughter Jaime asked that Barb and I take a look at houses “out in the country” with her and her spouse last Saturday. They live in Bellevue near where the nearly completed light rail from downtown Seattle terminates near Microsoft. She tends a bit toward the neurotic side of normal and her location near easy access from the communist infected downtown Seattle bothers her. She received permission from “all the way up the management chain” at Microsoft to work from home “forever”. Barb and I looked at homes with them for several hours which were an hour drive from her current location. They made an offer on a place with a one acre lot next door to a home with a “Trump 2020” sign in the yard. That might as well be an alternate universe from downtown Seattle.

Also, I have accelerated my plans to buy or build a home in Idaho. A good part of our visit over the 4th of July weekend was to look at three different homes near Boomershoot we expect to be on the market soon. In this neighborhood property seldom gets formally “listed”. It’s almost always via word of mouth that you find out something is for sale or someone is interested in buying. We drove by the homes and told my brothers and sister-in-law that we are interested. We also looked at three different potential sites on my property to build. We chose one and have contacted a potential builder/architect. Then yesterday I completed a tentative floor plan. This would be small “summer home” or bugout location if things get too dangerous or politically intolerable in our current location.

So, to answer Alien’s question in something more than one word and less than a page, we feel pretty safe where we are for now and really like what we have here. We won’t be moving unless there is some pretty drastic changes happening a lot closer to home. However, we and others, are implementing plans to deal with that scenario.

Quote of the day—Carl "Bear" Bussjaeger @BearBussjaeger

Dear Seattle,

You’re screwed, and it’s the mayor and city council’s fault.

Best ‘luck with the riots.



Carl “Bear” Bussjaeger @BearBussjaeger
Tweeted on July 25, 2020
[This was in response to this open letter from the Chief of Police to local businesses and residents.:


We live in interesting times.—Joe]


Via Milo Yiannopoulos @m


While I got a chuckle out of this it’s quite misleading. There is a big difference between the gun owner protests which leave the streets cleaner than when they arrived with the most “violent” exchanges are spirited legal briefs compared to the riots, looting, and destruction of the Marxists of the last few weeks.

They can’t honestly believe we would be on their side. You almost have to start looking at elderly nun demographics to find a group of people more law abiding than people who have concealed carry licenses.

The only thing that I know of which we have in common is the skill set and tools to quickly create a lot of damage. It’s just that no one has flipped our switch yet with a valid target. There are a number of scenarios where the rioting Marxist change that. But in all the futures I see the police will give the gun owners a slight nod and turn back to engage the remaining commies.

Quote of the day—Jason Sullivan and Bill Binney

Once a government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go, and that is down the path of increasingly repressive measures, until it becomes a source of terror to all its citizens and creates a country where everyone lives in fear.

Jason Sullivan and Bill Binney
July 11, 2020
Binney & Sullivan: An Open Letter Challenge To Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey On Censorship
[I have nothing to add.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Peter Savodnik

We should be able to agree that, in today’s ever-coarsening discourse, there are dangerous echoes of these fictional characters who anticipated the Bolsheviks and Stalinists—the destroyers of ancient civilizations who burned it all down only so they could rebuild the world in their own image.

We know how this turned out, and for those who have forgotten, or for those who are too young or ignorant to know, we should remind them over and over: Those who questioned the revolution, objected to any of its ends or means, thought there might be something worth preserving, were deemed hostile combatants or hapless chumps whose false consciousness inhibited progress. In the end, they were all airbrushed. In the end, the way one escaped this airbrushing was to signal, with a great and inauthentic virtue, that one was not a hostile combatant by spotlighting the real enemies of progress. Whether these enemies were real or “real” was immaterial. Only idiots worried about the truth. There was no truth. What was most important was to keep one’s head down and, if need be, accuse wantonly. Accuse! Accuse! Accuse! Or as Americans like to say, the best defense is a good offense. Everyone knew this would never lead to the place they had been promised it would lead to, but what else was there to do? As the violence ratcheted up, it was necessary to signal with ever greater ferocity, to name more names, to out more wrong-thinkers, until all that was left was the pathetic, bloodless corpse of a country dislodged from itself.

When I imagine this people we are becoming, I think of old men I have interviewed, in Moscow, Minsk, Brest, Kiev, Tblisi, Novosibirsk, Irkutsk, Khabarovsk, Vladivostok, who once spent a year or two or 10 or 20 in a camp in the far north or far east of Russia. This was in the 1940s and ’50s. Their crime was usually petty or not even a crime. It often had to do with survival—stealing a stale loaf of bread. Or talking to the wrong person, or saying something impolitic. Or being accused, without any evidence, of something worse.

Peter Savodnik
July 14, 2020
Woke America Is a Russian Novel
[Via Ed Driscoll.

So, it’s not just me seeing the parallels between Russia and the U.S.—Joe]