MonthDecember 2018

Failure After Failure After Failure

I was alerted to this by a post by J. KB over at Miguel’s. I have to agree with him that for as much shit as we give the media for their obvious bias, they are capable of doing some amazing work. If the Sun Sentinel doesn’t receive a Pulitzer for their tireless work on documenting all of Broward County’s failures during the Parkland shooting, the committee fucking robbed them. This is the epitome of what good journalism is supposed to do – hold those in power to account for mistakes, mismanagement, and outright fraud that led to both the deaths of citizens and the deprivation of other citizens’ rights.

The Sun Sentinel posted an interactive minute-by-minute account of the Parkland shooting, including the numerous failures of the system and of those entrusted with the protection of the students – morally, if not legally. It also busts some of the myths surrounding that horrible tragedy. You need to RTWT. And then RTWT of J. Kb’s analysis of the analysis. Go ahead. I’ll wait.

Multiple, multiple, multiple failures. The fact that the top tiers of both the Broward Sheriffs Office and the School System have not been publicly fired and publicly shamed is a damning indictment of that county’s government. And those same reprehensible people were perfectly willing to cast blame on people like me to hide their own failures.

It makes one long for the days public officials feared things like tar and feathers.

Friday Quote – George Mason

No branch of government should ever be able to combine the power of the sword with the power of the purse.

Broke People and Poor People

There’s an article in the local fish wrapper about rent to own pets.

she took home the fuzzy black poodle her daughter picked out at Puppies Tampa. She got the food bowls, the leash. The toys, the treats. But the purebred dog came at a premium cost. One, she said, a pet store employee assured her could be managed through a finance plan for which Rodriguez would certainly be approved.

Essentially, the protagonist of the story entered into a “rent to own” agreement for a $1,500 dog. She didn’t realize this until she was told by her bankruptcy attorney. And now she’s suing because the people didn’t properly explain the dog could be repo’d if she missed a payment.

The theme of the story was “evil companies use predatory loan practices on the most vulnerable for pets.” My takeaway was “don’t do poor people things, like finance a fifteen-hundred dollar dog.”

Dave Ramsey explains the difference between broke and poor. Broke is a condition that you find yourself in usually because of mistakes, but sometimes because of other events. Poor is a mindset. It’s usually tied with a failure to delay gratification combined with financial illiteracy. One of the big characteristics of poor is blaming others for your situation. I can’t get ahead because someone is keeping me down.

My guiding principle for charity is hand up, not handout. I am willing to help a broke person, but not a recalcitrant poor person. It may sound cruel, but I want to make sure my limited charitable resources do the most good.

Christmas AAR

It’s amusing that someone as uninterested in holiday celebrations is getting married to someone who absolutely reveals in the holidays. Shortly after Thanksgiving, the Wife To Be had the house in wall-to-wall decorations, with not so subtle hints that she really wanted to do lights outdoors. This is also our first real Christmas together. There are traditions that need to be established.

Tradition 1 – Matching/complimentary holiday shirts. WTB wanted to do pajamas. This was the compromise.

Tradition 2 – Gingerbread pancakes. And bacon. This is definitely a good holiday breakfast.

Tradition 3 – Meat smoking. I left my big Weber at my old house for my Shootin Buddy. I figured he would get more use of it than me down here. The WTB and her niece bought a smaller one, so I can indulge again. This year is duck over oak. Simple salt and pepper rub.

Tradition 4 – Me smoking. A bit over five years ago, I gave up cigars. I have too many risk factors, too much bad family medical history, and a Wife To Be who has allergies. I’ve missed my cigars. So, I will indulge in one cigar while tending the meat. This year is a Cusano 18 Maduro. This was one of my favorite cigars, and I wanted something mild for getting back into them.

Overall, the dinner went off without any major issues. Except I ate too damn much. Back on the diet I go.

Metal Tuesday- Iron Maiden Christmas

This came out a couple of years ago, and I failed to share the joy here. Remedying that this year.

Lessons In Wedding Planning – Invitations

DISCLAIMER – Regardless of how today’s post may sound, the Wife To Be (WTB) is not becoming a Bridezilla as the big day approaches. This is more an illustration of the differences in our thought processes.

As for today’s lesson…

When you and your intended have reviewed several options for invitations, including color, texture, wording, font, and finally price, and chosen the one you both like the best, you have not chosen your invitations.

You have only chosen the first option.

More will be forthcoming as she scours the internet.

Friday Quote – Frederick Douglass

Power never concedes nothing without a demand. It never did, and it never will.

RKBA Round Up

Probably the biggest story is the ATF banning bumpstocks. A lot of anger tbrown at the NRA (which I don’t think is deserved) and a lot at the president (which is). Miguel disagrees with me on that last point. Yes, the Hearing Protection and National Reciprocity are in Congress, but for a president who took our shilling, he’s been remarkably unwilling to expend political capital for our causes.

Next up, unlike the state courts, the federal court reminds us that the cops have no duty to protect and dismissed the suit against Broward over the Parkland shooting. One hopes parents and teachers take away the proper lessons, but I’m highly doubtful.

Speaking of Parkland, the report cans be found here. I doubt our current legislature will actually do anything with its recommendations, much less the local governments.

Here’s a listicle on why you should own an AR-15.

A New York judge struck down the state’s ban on nunchucks. RKBA includes things other than guns and knives.

March of Automation – Vacuum Edition

Part of the Wife To Be’s (WTB’s) bonus went to picking up a shiny new robot vacuum. It’s on sale over at Amazon, and she found a coupon code to knock the price down a bit more. We’ve been running it over the weekend. For a no-frills, simple robot vacuum, it’s not bad. At least in my less than a week’s worth of experience. The WTB really enjoys it.

It is funny watching one of the cats walk behind it, like he’s herding the device. The rest of the cats are coping with the bizarre device that has entered their world.

Metal Tuesday- Icons For Hire – Cynics & Critics

Yay for a new female-fronted band. With a catchy name even.

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