I don't mean to offend. It's probably going to happen anyway.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Self absorption

The CNN talking heads are discussing whether 'our' generation is the most self absorbed one. I don't care enough to read the closed captions on it, but all I can say is that if you are asking that question, odds are at least you are that self obsessed.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013



I've had to delete my very first comment here for grand mal douchery. It seems my Lesson Time post has garnered some minor internet attention. (Hey everyone by the way, the free ice cream is sporadic and often weirdly flavored, but hey, it's free.)

An anonymous commenter decided that I was a corporate whore shilling for CTD.* Said critter said so in a comment that made me sad, not in the name calling, but in the lack of misspellings to make fun of. If you're gonna make an ass of yourself here, at least go all out and allow me to make fun of you.**

You will not see this comment on the post anymore, nor will I copy said critters words verbatim. That's more credit than I care to give them.

If you cannot contribute to the conversation, I kindly invite you to sit over here and hold this cloth under your chin. Drool is surprisingly irksome to clean out of the carpets.

If you insist on 'contributing' anyways, but refuse to claim your words as your own, hiding behind the mask of anonymity, I'm afraid you'll have to be patient for a while. The spike pit is done, as is the wasp tunnel, but the release mechanism on the trapdoor is finicky. I'm planning on scrapping it and starting over soon, but you know how these things go...

I have no problem with being called out for my opinions and positions. In point of fact, I really want that to happen when I'm out of line. It helps me to refine my thinking and stay consistent. I do have a problem with drive by cowards who can neither put in the effort to discuss like a proper human being nor have the decency to own their words.

And finally, if you're going to be rude or offensive, at least make it interesting. Rude, offensive AND boring is just getting scrapped. Rude, offensive and entertaining? That's blog fodder, and I really need practice at mockery.

And just to be clear, I am not really distributor loyal at all. I go where the best value is (not just best price, best value, but that's a discussion for another time.)  CTD does not offend my delicate constitution with their actions. If they have the best value on something, sure. I'll buy from them. I won't go out of my way either to buy from them or not to buy from them. This is the sort of ringing endorsement that makes someone a whore? Maybe I should start making endorsement deals. I do indifference well.

*I'm not, but hey, if CTD wants to chuck a hundred grand at me in exchange for some advertising? Heck yeah, sign me up.
**To those who get upset by this, I'm JOKING. Mostly.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Scout rifle

Idle thought exercise. How would you go about making a 91/30 into a scout rifle? M44 would also be acceptable but less desirable.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Lesson Time

This is the sort of post I wish I would never have to write, but it's been an issue cropping up recently.

Let's talk about netiquette and ideological purges, shall we?

Tam has recently been dealing with a comment troll who makes claims of bloody murder and censorship when his comments are deleted, deriding the death of the first amendment. The same claims are turning up on the Second Amendment Foundation's Facebook when comments about their ongoing relationship with Cheaper Than Dirt get deleted for offensiveness and obscenity.

Let's take a look at the First Amendment.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
The important bit here is the independent clause, ''Congress shall make no law''. The dependent clause ''abridging the freedom of speech'' is the specific case.

This next bit, I address to all those who are or have ever been butthurt about comments being deleted. The First Amendment to the Constitution is a restriction (NOT an active imperative) on Congress. It has absolutely no bearing on the interactions between individuals or corporations. Congress can't delete your comments, but Tam or SAF most certainly can.

So, your comments can be deleted free of penalty other than public opinion. How then can you make your voice heard without The Man keeping you down? How can you speak truth to power when you have no voice?

It's quite simple. Don't be a jerk.

I suppose you could put together your own site where you're in charge and you can write whatever you want to and no one will stop you. Lots of good blogs get started that way. Many more half baked crazy blogs get started that way. In order to get readers to pay attention, really, you're going to have to go back to that first point anyways.

There are sites that will delete comments for simply disagreeing. Those sites are generally not worth your time. Tam and SAF are not among them. If your comment gets deleted, it's because you were a giant douche canoe, not because of ideology.  If you don't see how your comment could be construed as jerkish, then please, go outside, play with a puppy, and realize that you are not the only human on the internet.

This sorta brings me into my next point of order. This one extends to far more than those commenters previously addressed.

I am seeing an alarming and frustrating trend recently I have been calling "Shun the non-believer". We in the gunny community have a nasty tendency to eat our own for not being ideologically pure enough.

Remington not committing to leave New York* after the SAFE Act made a number of people swear off Remington entirely, since clearly 'they didn't care about gun rights'.

Cheaper Than Dirt raised prices and temporarily suspended gun sales after Newtown. Clearly just in it for the money and didn't care at all about gun rights, right?

The NRA can't catch a break on criticisms.

Don't get me started on the OC/CC flame wars.

If I were in the position of CTD, I probably would have acted differently. I think the guys who walk into Starbucks with rifles slung over their shoulders are phenomenally stupid. I think Remington was put in an untenable position and probably could have handled the PR a little better.

I don't hate any of them.

I will still buy products from CTD. My first pistol may be a Remington. Heck, I might buy it from CTD. I can have civil discussions with the rifle OC'ers.

Fundamentally we are all on the same side. We have different approaches and different primary goals, but we all have the commonality of interest in guns and a vested interest in the continued existence of the gun culture.

Even Dick Metcalf's meltdown recently was not outside of the realm of reason. I disagree fairly strongly, but feel it could have been used to foster debate about it and maybe bring people of that mindset or even further away into the fold. Instead, he's out a job and we have alienated more people.

Screaming SHALL NOT BE INFRINGED is the sort of thing that shouldn't be a problem, but is. There's a range of different opinions on all the issues in question, and it's senseless to eat our own based on the slightest hint of ideological differences.

Do I believe that my ideologies are right? Absolutely, else I wouldn't hold them. That doesn't mean I cannot work with and respect other opinions.

The vitriol and infighting can only hurt us. While it's a great notion that we could put on a unified face to the world, that's not the way the world works and leads to the same oppressive techniques we find so despicable in government.

While our ideological purges may not leave 20 million people dead like those of Stalinist Russia, they leave us with no allies and a somewhat tarnished moral high ground.

Take what friends you can. Don't make yourself new enemies. This really shouldn't be that hard.

*Not committing to staying in New York, mind.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Because I can't come up with new words

"We sleep soundly in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm." -- Winston Churchill

It may be misquoted, warped, and misunderstood to the point of having difficult if not impossible attribution, but that doesn't make it any less right. Freedom isn't free.

By all means give the veterans a day. My one complaint with Veteran's Day is that it is only one day. Those men and women are deserving of our thanks and admiration. Let them know you appreciate it, today and every day.

And for those of you who can, join them. This country needs its protectors.