Friday Tour d’Horizon, Week 49

Well, this week we started our Tour d’Horizon, on a timely basis — Sunday! So let’s see if the week has given us good stuff.


I don’t wanna work, I just wanna bang on my gun all day.

We Make “Battlefield I” Come Alive

Kid has come back this week to celebrate a friend’s birthday, to hang out, and to visit some old friends, like his favorite schoolmates, and the people (workers and daily “regulars”) at the church where he worked. Having him around has been a delight. The move to St. Louis with Plaintiff II seems to have helped his health, so there is that.

Our gift to him this birthday was, per his request, the video game Battlefield I, a first-person shooter set in World War I. And one of the things we knew he wanted to do was go to the range. Easily done, right? But we thought we’d do something a little different. We let him handle several World War I guns that we figured featured in the game, and brought a couple out to shoot, along with our carry P-01 and his choice of the ARs.

He got to shoot a 98a and a Lange Pistole 08 (artillery Luger). The 98a was a neat trick as we don’t have one, exactly. However, we have a 1923 vz. 22 made by the Czechoslovak State Armory in Brno, which is where significant amounts of the Mauser tooling (and engineers) went after the Treaty of Versailles idled Oberndorf. A near-clone of the 98a, it was the second rifle made in the factory that had been an Austro-Hungaran repair facility, and it was only made for about a year before the Czechoslovak Army replaced it with a carbine version, the vz. 24. Many of the vz. 22s were exported to Turkey, but this one bears no marks of any service but Czechoslovak.

The headspace and function of the gun was good, apart from the safety, which is stuck in the “fire” position. We had some Yugoslav surplus ball. Kid loved it, and learned why we stressed having it firmly against the pocket of his shoulder on firing, and learned why we keep saying the sights were the one part where the Mauser was not best in the world in 1914. The Luger was less successful. Firing 115 grain ball we had one failure to extract, but Kid had a hard time with it, with several jams. We had a case of 125 grain, and that might have solved our problem, but it was late and we had to police the range while the sun still shone. He’s asked for the AR, but when we unpacked, most of the mags were still loaded. The 200 rounds of Yugo ball were gone.

“I can’t wait till I’m 18 and can buy my own guns!” And he goes forth on this planet, a lover not only of AR and AK, but of the Mauser 98. Call us anytime, Lord: our mission is complete.

German (Blank) Gun Licenses Up Significantly in 2016

Sent by a friend of the blog. From German Wikipedia:

“Im Juni 2016 waren 402.301 kleine Waffenscheine im Nationalen Waffenregister gespeichert. [3] , bis Ende Oktober 2016 wurden 449.000 Dokumente registriert. [4] . Die Anzahl stieg damit deutlich an: im ersten Halbjahr 2016 um 49 %. [3] und bis Oktober um ~63 % im Vergleich zum Vorjahr [4] .”

Auf Englisch:

In June 2016, 402,301 Minor Weapons Licenses were recorded in the National Weapons Register; by the end of October, 2016 449,000 of these documents were registered. The numbers thus increased significantly: in the first half of 2016 by 49%, and through October approximately 63% in comparison to the prior year.

Yes, under half a million weapons card owners in a country of 80 million. This is a rather weird carry license, unique to Germany, that doesn’t cover real guns. The MWL (kleiner Waffenschein) allows the carry of a blank-firing weapon outside of the home. It is a new category, established in 2002. (Any adult German may buy a blank gun, but he needs an MWL to carry it). Blank gun license? Don’t laugh, it’s all they’ve got, in a country where the political ovethead is swelling the population with imported violent criminals and terrorists.

Tracking Point Update

In previous weekly wraps, we included the Vimeo links to the first four shots or “Duels” of the American Sniper Challenge. Tracking Point has been trickling them out (Trickling Point?) to keep people excited about their firearms this holiday season and as of 9 AM Texas time this morning, they were down to just ten of the $14,000 M900 Super Kit (the well-equipped 900 yard .day/night 308 AR) for this Christmas.

Here’s an overview of the Challenge. This should be visible everywhere as it’s a YouTube video:

They were down to ten of the $9,500 5.56mm M700s on the morning of Pearl Harbor day, so you might be SOL on that one already.

Duel 5: Prone (Bipod), Unknown Distance

As of noon today, this was the last of the 13 “Duels” that they’d posted on Vimeo. .(If you’re too impatient to wait for us next Friday, you can keep checking TP’s Vimeo account).

Here’s the link for those of you for whom the embed worketh not (from previous complaints, some Eurostanis):

Gun Stocks update

PreElection closings: RGR 64.40, SWHC 28.45, VSTO 38.94.  [8 Nov 16]
-3 week’s closings: RGR 53.20, SWHC 24.13, VSTO 40.02. [18 Nov 16]
-2 week’s closings: RGR 52.50, SWHC 23.82, VSTO 41.05. [25 Nov 16] [short trading day and week]
Last week’s closings: RGR 50.25, SWHC 21.10, VSTO 39.66. [2 Dec 16]
This week’s closings: RGR 51.95, SWHC 21.25, VSTO 39.05. [9 Dec 16] [as of noon]

Red, in case you were wondering, is not good.

Disclaimer: Your Humble Blogger holds RGR, bought at about 56.40 on 9 Nov. It bottomed in the 40s later that day. We still think it has longterm growth potential, and we like the dividend, but we’ve lost (on paper) thousands of dollars.

Gun Poly-Ticks

Congressional 2A Caucus

A baker’s dozen of Republican Congressmen have founded the 2nd Amendment Caucus. Names at the link. (No word on whether their opposition Democrats will found a “2nd Amendment, but…” caucus). Most of the names on the list come to mind as solid 2A reps, but a previous 2A Caucus collapsed in waffling.

Usage and Employment

The hardware takes you only half way. 

Listen Live to Andrew Branca this weekend!

Andrew sends

On Sunday, December 11 at 8PM Eastern / 6PM Central I will be on the air, LIVE, with Mark Walters of Armed America Radio.  To listen, go to and click on ‘Listen Live.’   It sometimes starts with an advertisement so make sure to tune in a minute or so early.

We don’t see how 8PM Eastern / 6PM Central works, as the two time zones are only an hour apart, but whatever. We strongly recommend his book, live seminars, and instructor program, all of which we’ve spent our own money on. This is instruction that can save you life, not in the sense that tactical training is, but in the sense that a life spent reenacting the pre-escape scenes of The Shawshank Redemption is not much of a life. One screwup in self defense can land you in the sights of a prosecutor, and in the stripes of a convict.

Quick Thinking!

A quick-thinking woman, held hostage by a flipped-out husband, managed to save herself and her 3-year-old by scrawling “Call 911” on a UPS package being picked up at her home. The UPS driver, alerted, did just that, and sheriff’s deputies soon had the situation resolved without violence. UPS notes that its drivers are trained to, as they saying goes, observe and report.

No, she didn’t use a weapon, but she saved herself.

Cops ‘n’ Crims

Cops bein’ cops, crims bein’ crims. The endless Tom and Jerry show of crime and (sometimes instantaneous) punishment.

Why Police Have Snipers

No, it’s not a two-mile shot, but a typical close-range police sniper shot, and the very one they train for (and that features in 1000 movies): the armed hostage-taker. Three hours into an armed standoff with Tulsa, OK, police, one Salvador Reyes, 42, who didn’t take it well when his wife dropped a cash-out divorce on him and moved a boyfriend in, invaded the house and grabbed a kid a Mom of the Year™ and Captain Coxcomb fled with two other kids.

After some fruitless hours, the armed guy who had been pointing a gun at himself and the kid, stepped out on the balcony, still armed, holding a 2-year-old — not his two-year-old, the current boyfriend’s kid — as a human shield. With a railing around the balcony, the cop took the ballsy decision — and the shot — as soon as Reyes was framed in the door. Reyes dropped, dead as a mackerel.

Here’s the brief PoliceOne take. Here’s a longer report at the Tulsa World. Here’s the YouTube page with an explanation in the description field. The World says the shot was a planned decision:

“If he comes outside, is armed and has the baby, if there’s a clear shot to the head take it,” an officer ordered midway through the standoff, according to a computer-aided dispatch transcript obtained by the Tulsa World.

Now the wife “wins” the divorce, so no doubt she’s happy. It’s easy to see how guys get emotional in situations like this, but Reyes could tell you, if he wasn’t stone cold graveyard dead, that it doesn’t pay.

The cop has a heck of a name, for a cop: Officer Jason Lawless. One small detail buried deep in the Tulsa World story:

When officers arrived, they found Reyes standing in the front yard before he retreated into the residence. He then appeared multiple times on the second-floor balcony and at the front door, each time holding the child and a gun, police said.

Officers tried unsuccessfully to communicate with Reyes, whom a spokesman has said “spoke very little English,” and eventually requested a Spanish-speaking officer. Additional attempts to negotiate in Spanish were ineffective, leading police to opt for a lethal solution.

Just threatening the kids Americans won’t threaten.

When the Cop Was a Crim, I

NYPD PatrolmanRichard Evans, was called “unfit for duty” when supervisors called him back to the 52nd Precinct house in the Bronx after citizen complains he was drunk on duty. A supervisor agreed with the citizens, and suspended Evans — without pay, which the NY Post notes was $126k last fiscal year — on the spot. You know, that scene from every cop movie where the by-the-book supervisor takes the hero’s gun and badge? Only Hollywood’s probably going to give his hero’s life story a miss.

The officer was described by sources as a problem drinker.

One source said he is “really sick and having issues.”

“Nobody’s been able to do anything about it,” another said.

A photo snapped last year shows Evans nodding off in a chair in the station’s locker room with his shirt hiked up, exposing his large gut.

That photo was almost certainly taken by a fellow cop who’s sick of him, and hiked up the shirt for the photo. What’s the over-under on whether the guy got bag-dragged, too?

At least the union is sure to back him up — Evans is a PBA delegate. Evans has complained that he lives “paycheck to paycheck,” despite his high earnings.

Exercise for the reader: get caught exercising your NYC pistol permit (permits from the rest of the state are invalid in the five boroughs) while drunk, and see if you get the gentle treatment Evans has had, so far. What leader lets a drunk get this bad? The passed-out photo’s almost two years old!

Cop Killer Sought Bagged

Wednesday, Georgia police were searching for this guy, Minguell Kennedy Lambrick, in the shooting of two cops in Americus, Georgia. One, an Americus cop, was kiled, and the other a campus officer from a nearby institution who came to back him up, was critically wounded.

How funny, that they already had this mugshot on file for the cop killer. How often does that happen? (Yes, we’re being facetious).

Updates: the wounded officer has also passed away, despite the great efforts of first responders, surgeons, and hospital staff. And the killer, who was not only a career criminal but also had active warrants, killed himself yesterday, when cornered. God damn his soul. The citizen who tipped police to the late unlamented Lembrick’s location may receive  $70k reward.

New G-Rides?

Everyone who follows or has friends in Federal LE knows that of all the agencies, Immigration and Customs Enforcement has had the lowest morale (three-hundreth-and-plenty out of all three-hundred-and-plenty agencies, actually), and it doesn’t take an Aristotle to figure out why.

Morale has definitely seen an uptick in the last month, in hopes the the HSI part will #MakeInvestigationsGreatAgain and the ERO part will #GetToDoDeportations&RemovalsAgain. That could happen, but we suspect that the story that they’re all getting these new g-rides is, alas, Fake News.


Nose: “There isn’t a lot of room in the back for detainees… won’t they be uncomfortable?”

SA Not-Authorized-to-Speak-to-Nose: “So?”

NYT: Prisons are Raaaaacist

Because you can’t spell the word without five a’s. The Times’s lengthy beef, to which at least four reporters contributed, is that, statistically, black violent felons aren’t getting paroled as soon or as frequently as white violent felons.

Hey, we know how to make the parole rates of both kinds of violent felons equal out to infinity decimal places. 0.00000000000~%!

The Perils of Kathleen: is now Suspended

For the first time in Christ-knows-how-long, there is nothing in the news about the militantly anti-gun, resoundingly dishonest convicted felon and former Attorney General of the State of Pennsylvania. Her replacement Josh Shapiro, shares her anti-gun sentiment.

Absent other developments, this featurette is suspended until the outcome of her appeal puts her back in the news — and, God willing, back behind bars — again.

When the Cop was a Crim, II

Actually, the Cop was a victim. Of an armed assault by a “paranoid” and possibly drunken FBI agent, Ruben Hernandez, in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Fortunately, Hernandez’s bad (drunken?) marksmanship saved the cop, and fortunately for Hernandez, the cop didn’t fire back.

Hernandez is a Vegas-based FBI special agent who was in Michigan pursuing an investigation. Now he is in jail for trying to shoot a cop during an “episode” at a local Planet Fitness.

How To Survive Police Encounters NEW

An infographic for urban yoot.


Small-Time, Small-Mind Vandalism NEW

In the City of Brotherly Love, Duncan Lloyd and his boyfriend, whose identity police are treating with a degree of secrecy the CIA has proven unable to provide for intelligence operations, were out for a stroll in an upscale neighborhood. Lloyd and date were sashaying along, sipping wine from a long-stemmed glass whilst wearing, we are not making this up, an ascot. Lloyd is, and this is relevant to what happens next, “Assistant City Solicitor,” an entry-level lawyer for the city of Philadelphia. (One suspects his presence in the low-rent district of Philadelphia’s legal community suggests either that he’s slumming in hopes of launching a political career, or he didn’t come by his ascot honestly).

What’d Lloyd and his boyfriend do? Says the Philadelphia Inquirer: 

Duncan Lloyd, an assistant city solicitor, was identified in surveillance footage that captured Lloyd and a second man walking along Germantown Avenue in Chestnut Hill on Nov 25. In the footage, Lloyd is seen wearing a blue blazer and holding a glass of wine, filming or taking photos, while a second man spray paints “F— Trump,” on the wall of a newly opened Fresh Market.

Police released a video which shows Lloyd, wine glass in hand, holding up his cellphone as the second man, described as 20 to 30 years old, 6 feet tall, medium build, and wearing a blue hooded jacket, spray-paints the wall.

Police have estimated the damage at between $3,000 and $10,000.

For those of you who live where fresh food is the norm, the “Fresh Market” is a hipster urban market that lets you virtue-signal by paying more for produce, in a store that has priced the black and brown “masses” out and only has “your kind” of people. If you’re Duncan Lloyd.

So far, the police have been unable to identify the culprits, or, more likely, has been given instructions. Mayor Kenney, who certainly agrees with the sentiments in the graffito, is moving Gaia and earth not to fire his overdressed and undercivil underling.

“It’s still working out. It’s certainly hateful and inappropriate and unacceptable…but people are human beings and they make mistakes and it’s a dumb mistake,” Kenney said. “It’s hateful graffiti, hateful graffiti is never acceptable whether it’s a city employee or not.”

The small and usually demoralized Republican Party in the city had a hoot of a comment, too:

“Did the extra glass of Shiraz give him some sort of delusional confidence that there are no cameras on Germantown Avenue? The taxpayers should be entrusting exactly none of our faith into this man. He should be fired from our city’s Law Department immediately.”

Not going to happen. As we noted, the Mayor basically agrees with him, although he’s not enough of a dumb-ass to go around painting graffiti about it.

The Philly reporter got hold of the 32-year-old Lloyd’s Linked-in account, and reported with some hint of Schadenfreude:

Lloyd, 32, attended Germantown Friends School and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and Temple University’s Beasley School of Law, according to his LinkedIn page. He makes $63,207 a year, working in the Labor and Employment unit, representing the city mostly in federal and state discrimination lawsuits.

No wonder the city always settles or loses those suits.

On his LinkedIn page he wrote of the job, “As a result of these responsibilities, I hear the craziest stories – ones regularly driven by the unreasonable mores of lust, anger, passion, and envy.”

The story he’s wrapped up in now occurred around midnight Friday at the Fresh Market at 8200 Germantown Ave.

Ba-dump THUMP. Still, that was nothing to what another underemployed lawyer, Elie Mystal, the waspish queen of the Above the Law legal snark site, had to say.

When Duncan Lloyd vandalizes your city, it’s part of his larger campaign of finding a way to crawl out from under his covers in the morning. Look at him. LOOK AT HIM. He’s not out here trying to send the children of Trump supporters back to Mexico. He’s not trying to destroy the climate so Jesus can Rapture him to Graceland. He just wants to be able to look his cats in the eye without feeling ineffectual and ashamed. “I made a statement today, Odysseus and Penelope. I’m not going to let this be normalized.”

Mystal, who shares Kenney’s and Lloyd’s politics and attitudes, but not to the point of justifying vandalism, goes on and on. Do Read The Whole Thing™. Few things in life are more entertaining than the meltdown of a sore loser, and hardly any of these guys ever played team sports and learned sportsmanship, including the most crucial lesson, how to lose and come back to win again.

This kind of immature narcissism got them President-Elect Trump. Keep it up and they’ll have Trump through January, ’25.

Unconventional (and current) Warfare

What goes on in the battlezones of the world — and preparation of the future battlefields.

Who’s Spending Israel’s Shekels?

Well, the ones they’re spending in Germany on state-of-the-art conventional submarines from Thyssen Krupp, at least part of them, are going to the terrorists of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, who own “less than five percent” of the German industrial conglomerate. (They used to have a larger share, and a seat on the board. The share is now 4.5% through a holding company, IFIC). The Israeli media are not amused.

Even the Terrorists Know it’s a Sham

The Royal Saudi “Terrorist Rehab” program. You know, the one the USG is desperately packing various bomb-makers, planners, and jihad managers off to, to fulfill a campaign promise to “close Guantanamo”? Yeah, that one. Officially, only one in five returns to terrorism, but even the terrorists themselves have told that it’s really more like an advanced sharia terrorist training camp. Of 134 terrorists sent there, dozens have already returned to jihad against the West and civilization, with the support of their Saudi masters. This report in the New York Post summarizes and expands on the revelations in the terrorist parole documents here.

Speaking of Iranians, they’re Appealing to Friends in High Places

The Iranians have asked President Obama, who’s something more than a good buddy and something less than a controlled agent, to veto the routine extension of the Iranian Sanctions Act. The President can veto the bill, which provides a framework for sanctions on the world’s greatest terrorism exporter, but it would probably be overridden: it passed the Senate. for example, 99-0.

At present, the Act has no teeth because President Obama has unilaterally waived the provisions of the Act, pursuant to his deal to promote Iranian nuclear armament. But existence of the bill on the books would allow any subsequent President (like the one coming in approximately a month) to reinstate the sanctions. (Update — the President signed the bill. Sorry, Hadji).

Secretary of the Navy? Who’s Ze?

In a week that the Little Crappy Ship program was in the news for being over even the latest inflated budget and producing zero, add it up, zero combat power, the Navy focused single-mindedly on its latest mission: Getting everybody to pretend they’re some other sex. Even if they gotta make one up.

Karyn Z. Sproles, PhD, the director of the Center for Teaching and Learning, said there is a demand for “Safe Space” training at the Naval Academy.

“Training is offered because we find that, like all Millennials, this generation of midshipmen is eager to become more educated about issues of gender and sexuality,” she said. “There is a consistent demand by faculty, staff, and Midshipmen for ‘Safe Space’ training, which is regularly offered by the Center for Teaching and Learning.”

They got really awesome teachers, Florin and Marnie.

Florin is a “Diversity Consultant” who has given inclusivity trainings for YouTube, at Twitter’s headquarters in San Francisco, and Google offices around the world, including Tokyo and Sidney.

Because yeah, when another nation challenges us at sea we can just get @jack to ban ’em.

“Marnie, who identifies as gender neutral and goes by the prounouns [sic] ‘ze’ or ‘they,’ created their first LGBTQ training as a Peace Corps Volunteer in West Africa,” according to Florin’s website. “Marnie then worked for the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center, where ze organzied [sic] and canvassed for gay marriage.”

Forty-two midshipmen demanded this “safe space” training, apparently. (A few years from now, you’ll always be able to tell the naval officer in a joint operation. Ze’ll be the one in the blue cammies, hiding and sucking zis/zir thumb).

How does a continental power get by without a credible Navy? We’re, uh, asking for a friend. Ze wants to know.

Veterans’ Issues

Is it time to o disband this thing yet, and letting all its bloatoverhead seek its own level in the Dreaded Private Sector™?

Secret VA Hospital Ratings

Some wise guy once said, “Never write when you can speak. Never speak when you can nod. Never nod when you can wink.” The VA keeps writing, and then keeps trying to keep what they’ve been writing secret — most recently, a five-star rating scheme for VA facilities. The secrecy seems to have allowed VA to be quite frank in these internal ratings (unlike the usual .gov tee-ball participation trophy rating schemes, or VA’s PR statements to outsiders). For example, the Phoenix DVA, which has killed more people than the Oakland rave fire, earned its single star.

The documents obtained by USA TODAY list star ratings for every facility for the fourth quarter of 2015. The VA subsequently agreed to provide a list of one- and five-star facilities for the quarter that ended June 30, the most recent ratings available, but declined to identify those with two to four stars.

Undersecretary David Shulkin pointed out that the leak probably damaged attempts to keep the ratings honest, and boasted that:

…all of the one-star facilities have shown improvement except for the VA medical center in Detroit, which has declined

What are they going to do to turn that around?

[M]edical centers where performance has declined are getting extra scrutiny and help from national VA officials. If they still don’t show sufficient progress, hospital management could be replaced.

Don’t hold your breath.

The statistics show a mixed bag:

On average, veterans are dying at lower rates and contracting fewer staph and urinary tract infections from catheters in VA medical centers since 2014. Veterans are not staying as long in VA hospitals and they are being readmitted within 30 days at lower rates.

At the same time, veterans are experiencing higher rates of preventable complications during hospital stays, on average, than they did in 2014. Those on ventilators suffered more problems, such as catching pneumonia, and the rate of turnover for nurses has increased.

The VA’s probably a good place to eliminate civil service and increase manager accountability.

Maybe We’re Doing Managers Wrong

A declared candidate for head of VA, a lawyer named John Wells, thinks Washington isn’t run enough by lawyers. Here’s what he identifies as the cause of the problem:

  • Jim Nicholson, VA Secretary 2005-07 (West Point class of 1961)
  • James Peake, VA Secretary 2007-09 (West Point class of 1966)
  • Eric Shinseki, VA Secretary 2009-14 (West Point class of 1965)
  • Bob McDonald, VA Secretary 2014-17 (West Point class of 1975)

Eh, while that’s quite a list of underperformers, we don’t think their shared Hudson High pedigree is quite the cause. Other than that he is a former Navy officer, not a former Army guy, what Wells has to offer is more involvement by more attorneys, vastly more spending, and no more accountability for insiders than at present.

Then, we could probably do worse — and we probably will.

Lord Love a Duck!

The weird and wonderful (or creepy) that we didn’t otherwise get to. 

Novel Update


Still writing.

Fat Barbie update

The word is the same Hollyweird studio behind Ghostbustettes is going to make a live-action movie based on, we are not making this up, the ever popular doll Barbie. OK… now we see the desperation for a merchandising tie-in inherent in the system… but it was the actress that they want to play Barbie that caught folks’ attention: Amy Schumer.

Heck, it could be a whole series: The Fat and the Furious. 

Because if there’s anything we want our daughters to aspire to, it’s being fat, rude, crude, and, most of all, as abrasive as possible. That way, one day we can visit our grandkittens.

This may not be the blockbuster the studio us hoping for. She’s so horrible, she can even take the fun out of drinking: having her and her male cognate Seth Rogen as spokesmen made a brand of beer unpopular. We’re predicting another ghostbust.

OT: A Czech Collectors’ Item We Don’t Have Yet

This 1962 movie shows the Czech Tatra T602 luxury car, a weird and wonderful beast with a single tube chassis and rear-wheel drive from an air-cooled, rear-mounted overhead valve V8 engine. The car was mostly used as a chauffeur-driven conveyance by high Party mucks, and as a first ride on your way to the uranium mines at Jachymov at the hands of the Statní Bezpečnost, and one with CD diplomatic plates was used by Yasser Arafat to run both weapons and rent boys through the inter-German border, back during the Cold War. It was also sold in the West, which may be why this video was made with partial English titles. The guy playing the driver is a national champion rally driver; the guys playing the cops are really cops, and the cop car that gives ineffectual chase is a lower-rent Tatra.

Watching this video made us look for one to buy. So far, we haven’t. Tatras are weird and wonderful and have their own fans, like Citroëns, and both sets of fans probably need their heads examined. (Yeah, the Citroën box is already checked here. Let’s not do that again).


25 thoughts on “Friday Tour d’Horizon, Week 49

  1. Josey Wales

    When carried in Germany, those blank guns are usually loaded with tear gas cartridges. “Bang”, directly in the face.

  2. James

    While the licenses for the blank guns aren’t an indicator, the popularity of those guns are also partly due in part to their ease of conversion to fire different forms of live rounds. IIRC the mall shooter earlier this year used one. Some of the nicer ones are converted TO blank guns and can be modded pretty easily.

    1. Sommerbiwak

      In the mall shooter case it was not a blank gun. Because of cases in the past with blank guns converted to real there are strict rules nowadays to make the guns explosively disassemble themseleves when shot with live rounds. (That is intentionally weak construction.)

      It was a bit more complicated than that in the mall case. The pistol had been converted as theatre prop in Slovakia, bought there as such and then illegally converted back to hot firearm and then sold via black market over the borders in Germany.

      Which makes me wonder why you need to convert a real life gun for theatre stage, when there are lots of airsoft look alikes to choose from? They are cheaper too! Well maybe some old law still in effect I guess.

      1. obdo

        rumours are the slovak legislation deliberately kept that loophole to allow the citizenry access to real guns without registration under the radar of the eu-enforced national gun laws.

  3. Sommerbiwak

    The shares in Thyssen-Krupp owned by Iran are really nothing new. Just like the shares in Daimler-Benz they own, because the Shah went on a shopping spree with his oil money and invested part of it and did not waste all on blow and hookers. ;-)

    1. Hognose Post author

      Well, Benz has a long tradition of appealing to the unappealing. I’m still waiting for them to make a VIP limo (maybe a Maybach?) with dual rear axles like they did for their former Führer.


    Hognose, instructing young men in the ways of manliness is a mature mans responsibiity. I have two sons aged 18 and 16 and I take that responsibility seriously.

    In particular, I strongly believe that we Men of the Gun need to ensure that our culture is passed on to the men who will follow us so that that invaluable culture us preserved. If there isn’t a rifle behind every blade of grass then one day we’ll all be in trouble, in your country and mine.

    If you’ve introduced a young man to the joys and responsibilities of working a Mauser 98 action bolt gun then you really have fulfilled your responsibilities to that youngster. That story made things go all foggy and misty in my AO for a while, and reading stuff on on the intertubes doesn’t do thall all that often.

    Good on you.

    PS Arafat, guns and rent boys? I’d pay serious coin to get the good oil on that.

    1. Hognose Post author

      Arafat’s Tatra is for sale in Europe; I think it’s even got the old CD plates with it (not that they’re valid any more). The seller has the details. It would be interesting to have crime scene process the trunk, even at this remove of years.

      As far as Arafat, his terrorist orgs, and gun smuggling, there are walls of books; for rent boys my source is Oriana Fallaci. At one point, she notes, the East German Stasi was keeping him in beautiful blond 14-year-olds.

  5. John Distai

    Heck, it could be a whole series: The Fat and the Furious.

    Because if there’s anything we want our daughters to aspire to, it’s being fat, rude, crude, and, most of all, as abrasive as possible. That way, one day we can visit our grand kittens.

    The writing and awesome snark! Why we visit!

    The story of you and the Kid was touching.

  6. Y.

    Tatras are weird and wonderful and have their own fans, like Citroëns, and both sets of fans probably need their heads examined.

    Vintage Citroens were like that?

    My family’s been driving exclusively Citroens for the past ten years, and there’s never been any issue with any of them, and there’s a lot to be said for the smooth ride they offer.

    Typically, such suspension is only found in luxury, not mid-tier cars.

    1. Hognose Post author

      In Germany when lived there (30 years ago) Citroëns were notorious for failing their first or second TÜV, usually due to rust-through. The 2500(?) Pallas that I briefly owned was one of them, and it was weird and wonderful, with beautiful but illegible tape gages, a weird supercharger arrangement, a one-spoke steering wheel (these were the days before airbags) and numerous other oddities. Plus the usual French three-bolt wheels, which always looked questionable — when I was a kid, cars either had 5,6, 8 (Pontiacs were weird, too), or just 1 that came off with a rubber mallet (British sports cars and racing Halibrand wheels on road race cars). Of course, the “classic” DS made the Pallas look ordinary in shape and in detail. About 10 or 15 years ago you could buy the rare Citroën SM for short money because no one could work on them and there were no parts… specialists have emerged and now they’re priced like the exotics they are.

      Glad yours are working well. Hope they’re still kind of weird. I am sure that the Common Market forced all European makers to up their game.

      1. Y.

        Hope they’re still kind of weird.

        Can’t really tell, but then, I’m singularly uninterested in cars. The only thing more boring in my book is cell phones. If it was up to me, all cars would be Land Rovers (the no-frills kind) and all phones some variation on Nokia 3310…

        Inside & Out they don’t look as pedestrian aas say, VW’s or Škodas, but nothing exceptional. Comfortable, reliable & fast.

        On all of the ones we have or had the wheels were fastened by 4 bolts.

  7. obdo

    rolls-royce licensed that hydropneumatic suspension technology fro citröen for the smoothest ride on their silver spirits, plus servo steering, braking and clutches.

    guess what went wrong?

    the same thing that brought my beloved xantia to a standstill, namely a 12pence o-ring or sumthings.

    before you yanks start laughing, remember the 1986 challenger.

    disclaimer: citröeniste since 1978

    1. Hognose Post author

      I looked at a Silver Shadow once, and had a dealer inspect it. Long faces:
      “They put brake fluid in it!”
      “Wait,” says I, “innit s’posed to have brake fluid?”
      “No, it’s supposed to have RR special hydraulic goop, which unfortunately reacts with ordinary muggle brake fluid, and now it must have the whole brake system, cylinders and every inch of line, replaced.”
      “Sounds spendy.”
      [Tech quotes eye-popping figure]
      “That’s twice the Blue Book of the car.”

      Didn’t buy.

    1. John Distai

      Even as a law-abiding(?) citizen, I’d be kind of scared if that were the real thing. That’s a mean looking car!

  8. bloke_from_ohio

    I always thought that the 2A gives Americans the option of making any space a safe space.

      1. bloke_from_ohio

        It is not an original to me. I picked up the concept from the internet hive mind like a good millennial.

  9. Tam

    For those of you who live where fresh food is the norm, the “Fresh Market” is a hipster urban market that lets you virtue-signal by paying more for produce, in a store that has priced the black and brown “masses” out and only has “your kind” of people.

    Fresh Market is a North Carolina-based, largely suburban-oriented chain, yankee. :)

    As I had to painstakingly explain to the Democrat-Next-Door when they opened one here “If you’re buying meat or produce or chips or canned goods, the price is about the same as if you were shopping at Kroger. Unless you buy the nasty house-brand $#!+ at Kroger, in which case I can’t help you. It’s just that the selection of odd and/or gourmet stuff is better.”

    I wish, when things were getting divided up in the culture wars, good food and craft beer hadn’t wound up a social-signaling device for the Left, while deep-fried floor sweepings and carbonated horse-piss hadn’t been assigned to the Right. I guess it was a good trade-off for having the right opinions on, say, national defense, but…

    1. Hognose Post author

      “Suburban-Oriented” = minus the “urban”.

      One example recently at Fresh Market: Asian Pear, $2.49 each.
      “You can only get them here and at Trader Joe’s”.
      Asian Pear at Market Basket: $1.99. A pound.

      And I do my floor sweepings in olive oil (or butter if I want them to brown) in an air fryer, so there.

  10. Docduracoat

    We shop at Publix even though we have both Trader Joes and Fresh Market here
    The organic section at Publix is excellent!
    All 3 of my kids were allowed to come shooting starting at age 10
    Alas, none of them really took to it
    I am pleased that your son likes shooting and wants his own rifle.
    Mine still come shooting with me occasionally but only as a way to please their Dad
    At least they all now know how to handle a rifle and pistol

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