Trying to Make Sense

Blog Post

That day when you were happy to have your GoPro along…welcome to the Sermonette.

The Rapture is unlikely to relieve traffic problems in any major American city…


For the Day and for absent friends – one of my very favorites – on the eve of Memorial Day

All honor to Akademia Filmu i Telewizji and the Polish Youth Orchestra, Andrzej Kucybała, conductor.

Samuel Barber, Adagio Op. 11


Bullet Points:

** Old Films – AMC slapped a trigger warning on Goodfellas for ‘cultural stereotypes’ that are ‘inconsistent with today’s standards of inclusion and tolerance.’ Are they saying that mafia thugs didn’t act like that?

** Give money to the Disable Police Officer’s Charity.

** Iran – In case anyone has forgotten, the reason the Mullahs are in charge in Iran has a great deal to do directly with American policy actions, nor should it be forgotten that in Iranian history, the invasion of Iran in 1942 (a combined operation of the UK and USSR with follow-on American troops), ostensively to facilitate lend-lease shipments and protect British oil interests from Nazi sympathizers, is popularly blamed for the famine of 1942-1943 which killed possibly as many as 3 million Iranians.

Long-term American support for the Shah’s police state is also remembered bitterly. Resentments still run high. As a consequence, anything that can be rumored to be American or Western interference in Iran’s domestic politics today would be fatal to any cause intending to liberalize the country. We need to tread lightly so as not to derail any nascent opposition within Iran. This is NOT to say we shouldn’t hold Iran’s feet to the fire whenever and wherever they find or promote violence outside their borders. This might include measured strikes against Iranian forces who attack or threaten shipping in the region.

Iran is SUCH an opaque society. The idea that public opinion matters to the Imams seems quaint.

** Pedo Joe – distracted…yeah, it’s normal, but there you go.

** Real Men of Genius – Crack open a Bud Light…

** The War on Drugs (Attkisson) – “By most measures, America’s war on drugs has been an abysmal failure. From our biggest cities to rural areas, fentanyl, meth, and even a powerful modern version of marijuana have captured a generation, sparking mental illness, crime, and homelessness. Lisa Fletcher reports from New York’s Hudson Valley, where officials are still trying to crack the code.”

I’m pictured, right, next to 100,000 doses of ecstasy that we seized incident to arrest on July 12, 2000, almost 24 years ago. It doesn’t seem like that long ago. The so-called war on drugs was as much a failure then as now. I didn’t take many cheesecake photos next to seizures, but in that case, I did. The suspect was sentenced in the California system to three months in County Jail. A few weeks later, we arrested three men in Houston, Texas, where we seized ten doses of ecstasy, and the suspects were sentenced to three years in the Texas State Prison System. That’s how it worked.

** Pedo Joe’s Plan to Aid Gaza—The situation was predictable. Only five of the 16 aid trucks that left the secured area on Saturday arrived at the intended warehouse with their cargo intact, U.N. World Food Program spokesperson Steve Taravella told The Associated Press. He said the other 11 trucks were waylaid by what became a crowd and arrived without their cargo. (More here.) The aid that was stolen will be sold on the black market.

** What’s the difference between a quiet woman and a silent woman?

** Motivation time. Oh, you need more?

** UK Prisons are full – please, no more arrests.

** Visegrád 24 tweeted, “Last night, Russia removed the light buoys delineating the border between Russia and Estonia in the Narva River. “This happened after previous reports stating that Russia intends to change its maritime borders with Finland and Estonia unilaterally.”

** The Daily Mail reported, “13 conservative counties in Oregon approve ballot measures for a secession vote that would see them join non-woke Idaho — as they issue a list of demands.”


Pretexts for War

I don’t want to post this on Memorial Day – because the honored dead are not to blame.

Two days ago, I commented about the Gulf of Tonkin Incident in the comments section. Yesterday, Extreme Libertarian added this from Wikipedia.

I’m amazed. The Stockdale quote is in Wikipedia:

Squadron Commander James Stockdale was one of the U.S. pilots flying overhead during the second alleged attack. Stockdale writes in his 1984 book Love and War: “[I] had the best seat in the house to watch that event, and our destroyers were just shooting at phantom targets-there were no PT boats there … There was nothing there but black water and American firepower.” Stockdale, at one point, recounts seeing Turner Joy pointing her guns at Maddox. Stockdale said his superiors ordered him to keep quiet about this. After he was captured, this knowledge became a heavy burden. He later said he was concerned that his captors would eventually force him to reveal what he knew about the second incident.

*** *** ***

Prior to the US Invasion of Iraq: Operation Iraqi Freedom, USGOV searched diligently for a pretext for the invasion. The National Command Authority put out urgently to intelligence collectors to determine the extent to which Iraq held weapons of mass destruction.  I had nothing to do with Valerie Elise Plame or her husband, Joseph Wilson (more on Wikipedia), but the Plame Flap or whatever you wish to call it bore specifically on that requirement. I was privy to other information provided to President Bush and others from a basket of reliable, controlled assets which held that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. The advice that the president, Gen. Powell, Sec. Rumsfeld, etc., were given, but they were ignored entirely because they really wanted a war. The invasion of Iraq had absolutely nothing to do with the 9/11 attack or the Saudi Wahhabists who conspired to attack the United States. Everyone knew that, but the falling Twin Towers, the attack on the Pentagon, and the interrupted Flight 93 (intended attack on the White House) were fresh in the minds of the American public, and many conflated the two.

It’s a lot like linking the Taliban to the 9/11 attack. Saudis planned it and executed it but we invaded Afghanistan, half a world away. We can go on and on but that’s what we do.


Pombo’s Flight

On May 13, 1935, Juan Ignacio Pombo took off for Mexico (from London).

Juan Ignacio Pombo Alonso Pesquera, the youngest son of Juan Pombo Ibarra, was one of the brightest pioneers of aviation. With the support of the Mexican Government, which granted him a subsidy of 25,000 pesos, and the Santander Deputation, he acquired a British Aircraft Eagle aircraft. 2, a Cantilever low-wing monoplane built in plywood and equipped with a 130 HP Gipsy Major engine, in which the necessary modifications were introduced to make it capable of crossing the Atlantic.

The aircraft carried 694 liters of gasoline, which gave it a theoretical range of 3,800 kilometers. On Sunday, 12 May 1935, after a test flight, Pombo christened his aircraft Santander. He planned to arrive in Mexico after crossing the South Atlantic.

Juan Ignacio Pombo passed through Spain and circled North Africa to Bathurst, where he prepared to fly to Natal. He did it on May 20th. Things didn’t go precisely as planned and suffered a series of setbacks in which the plane was damaged in a landing in Brazil.

He resumed the flight again on June 10 and, after making a stop in Paramaribo, Trinidad Island, Maracaibo, Barranquilla, Bogota, again in Barranquilla and Panama, arrived in San José de Costa Rica suffering appendicitis, requiring surgery. Once he recovered, he again took to the air. Following stops in San Salvador, Guatemala, Vera Cruz, and Acapulco, he landed in Mexico on September 16, 1935. The little airplane was gifted to Mexico City, and the local government named him Honorary Commander of Mexican Aviation.



Firearms Fatalities and Children in the USA

  • 78% of all firearm-related deaths in the <1-17 age group are 14-17 year olds.
  • 70% of all children and teen firearm deaths occur in urban areas with more than 250,000 people.
  • Children, as defined, have a 0.0009% chance of dying from a firearm in the U.S.

More here from


Identify the Armor



Identify the Aircraft



Two pictures




Parting Shot

All kidding aside, I remember when they made us do that in elementary school. Get under the desk and face away from the window so you don’t get glass in your eyes when the thermonuclear bombs go off. Who came up with that?



43 thoughts on “Trying to Make Sense

  1. Identity the Armor:
    1. Cruiser Mk I
    Identify the Aircraft:
    2. Consolidated XP4Y Corregidor
    3. TBD
    4. TBD
    5. Polikarpov I-16

  2. The war on drugs. In 1978 I flew on my first USCG drug patrol in an HU-16E, as we were taxing out the pilot said “we’re going out to do our part to keep the price of drugs up on the street”.
    46 years later … he was right.
    A handful of Saudi’s attacked us so we invaded Afghanistan & Iraq… stayed in Afghanistan for a generation. Then we left.
    The Tonkin Gulf shows that we could “follow the money” even back then.
    As you said, “but that’s what we do”.

    1. the same folks that told us in the army “ass to the blast and cover your weapon.” i guess so that the next guy could use it?

  3. IDTANK-
    1. Cruiser Mk I
    2. Consolidated XP4Y Corregidor
    3. Dornier Do D
    4. Avro TBD
    5. Polikarpov I-16

        1. No money in it fir them, and the General Public kept distracted and on their heels/in the dark, hence the hate…and…hence them projecting onto PDJT what THEY ARE ACTUALLY DOING. (Yeah, shouting a bit.)

      1. You forgot LBJ, FDR and Woodrow Wilson. Those three dogturds were far worse than Bush #43.

  4. When you see the flash, duck and cover!
    I remember them well. Back in the late ’50s and early ’60s, school desks were impervious to nuclear blast and all the radios had the the CONELRAD frequencies marked on them. Fun times.

  5. Three months for 100,000 doses vs three years for 10 doses. Sounds right. If you walk into one branch of a bank and extract $1000 that isn’t yours then you could get sentenced to years. But if you extract $100,000,000 from the entire bank and collapse the entire enterprise? A government bailout happens. Somehow.

    What we did to Iran? Didn’t you write about those who “externalize” the other day? You know, that thing where whenever someone hates you it’s never because of your own actions, but always for no reason at all?

    Surprised about the Gulf of Tonkin Wikipedia entry? That Stockdale section might get memory-holed soon. (Or not. It makes the US look bad, so it may stay.) But bits and pieces are always coming and going from Our Global Respository of Truth. You remember reading something from say a year ago, go back to look for it, and hey presto, gone! So far it’s findable in the tracked revisions. So far.

    1. The Ministry of Truth as things well in hand. Rember the cornerstones of the ministry: WAR IS PEACE” The people of Oceania see this and believe that there must be causes for the greater good. “FREEDOM IS SLAVERY” This slogan is used to remind the people what becomes of those who go against the party beliefs. “IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH” Joe/Ho tell us how cool they are.

  6. In the first clip, those guys are jumping out of a… Blackhawk? Just for fun, or is there some actual reason?
    Also; dang, that’s a lot of gaffer’s tape.
    IDK what those two planes are, even though they are from a period I like.
    The funny thing about Iraq II is that we had a perfectly valid casus belli, that was blatantly
    obvious and undeniable. We were in a cease-fire with them, and they constantly violated
    the terms of said cease-fire, i.e. by firing on US aircraft patrolling the no-fly zone. But the
    FedGov folks wanted something flashier, and went with the then quite agreed-upon by
    most everyone WMD program. Apparently, even Saddam Hussein thought he had one,
    and was just being scammed. On the bright side, even though we eventually failed to
    follow through and left the place all fucked up, we did accomplish some positive things:
    We scared the hell out of our enemies, and we removed a government whose official policy
    was to use the secret police to assist the dictator’s sons in kidnapping and raping to death
    any women they thought were hot. Also, we murdered a ton of absolute douchebags,
    along with plenty of okay people who were just on the wrong side.
    – Kle.

  7. Real Men of Genius- on a Sunday!!? Heh
    As a budding engineer-type I always knew those school desks either had to be made out of titanium, but even that it was stupid to have us cower underneath. I defied hiding as I knew it was useless. I guess I was a too smart for my own good…altho I believe my dad laughed when I posed the question at dinner of why they think this works. And yeh, fast-forward to 2020, had/have the same mentality with the Covid Lockdown PsyOp…besides TPTB had zero authority to do so (sort of a similar approach to 4th Grade deal, eff them).
    I have been convinced over time there were no weapons of mass destruction…Cheney and Rumsfeld (same players resurfacing) sold Bush on that one to fire up the war machine for their Blackrock pals.
    Firearm Stats- Facts and data doesn’t lie, only the MSM Propagandinista’s do…same people with armed body guard details while telling us to turn in our weapons. In some instances you are what you do, even if by association (ie. The MSM Hyperventilator’s don’t ‘personally’ carry a firearm BUT their security detail does).

    1. Have to repost this, not only is it funny, IT’s TRUE! How many who lurk here relate? {[:-)
      PS- The Sermonette is funny, but getting more true by the day.
      Sidebar- Yesterday MrsPaulM and I got pushed inside with afternoon/evening storms, binge-watched Outer Range S1 until late, purely out of “where is this going”, and because we took a rare half day of vegging. Interesting, different, Brolin can ride (which made MrsPaulM happy, hates it when people can’t ride on screen even with good stock horses)…and a bit confounding as we had no idea what the deal was. Then of course the end tied up a few basic loose threads. Thoughts on S2? (As more standard fare MemDay weather showed up overnight, sunny and 52, but blasting so might be more inside than out…probably my fault for not for not driving a going bankrupt Rivian that has no place for a gooseneck hitch.)

    2. Funny thing about ‘duck and cover’ is it works. Very effective. As long as the blast is not directly overhead, hunkering down under a school desk designed to handle lardasses jumping up and down on them is a safe tactic from the effects of overpressure. And as long as the hunkeree is not in the burn zone and the bomb burst isn’t a ground blast.

      But those of us who have always lived at one kind of Ground Zero or another, well, yes, futile, unless the bomb misses the target (quite possible back in the day and even today with Russia’s and China’s nukes) or the bomb underperforms (quite possible back in the day and even today with Russia and China’s nukes.)

  8. Barber’s Adagio was put beautifully to the movie Platoon. Nice to see (a picture of) LL happy with his meds.

  9. Re Iran, remember, we gave them aircraft (P-3s and F-14s) back in the 70s, and they let us fly out of Bandar Abas too! That didn’t go over well with the dissidents…

  10. Eisenhower was prophet. Military/Industrial Complex financed by inflation. Inflation is a form of taxation.
    I was among those veterans opposing the Vietnam War. Our position was, “Get real, or get out”. My opinion of every military excursion since hasn’t changed.
    How to fix it? Damned if I know.

  11. That take on the rapture may explain how it will mostly go unnoticed.
    And then the four horseman, including famine, when the farmers and ranchers are gone.

    1. Along with the people that know how to fix and keep things running smoothly, including those who do all the smelly, messy jobs the elites won’t do for themselves.

  12. as to wmd, sadam had no nukes but both the germans and the russians had provided/sold him chem weapons and both sent teams into iraq in the build-up period to recover said munitions. that said, i agree the whole thing was trumped up over revenge for an attempt on daddy bush and a big cash grab. rummy strikes again. i do hope that bastard burns for eternity.

  13. When I was in school, we had three different alarm bells: fire, tornado and “duck and cover”.
    By high school we no longer practiced the attack drill.

  14. I think Breaking Bad would have been more interesting, if Walt made a synthetic opiate in time-release form and sold it to people with back injuries in intolerable pain, whose doctors were afraid for their licenses to prescribe enough meds. The sidekick could be a spine-injured veteran in a wheelchair who’s been failed by all his VA docs, but was gifted a month’s doses as a sales promotion.

      1. A question is, who would carry it? Blake’s Seven and Firefly were acceptable to the Mighty Wurlitzer because the libertarians lost hopelessly. As far as I can see, the Georgetown school of foreign service, Special Forces, Peace Core, and every government or religious school teaches nothing other than how to deliver a defeated people to an empire as a new colony. Nobody teaches who the Deacons for Defense and Justice were, or why MLK worked, or Switzerland, or the costs to power projection of mountains and oceans. If the lizard people were competent they would be Egyptian Pharaohs for a thousand years. Instead, I think their universities are teaching their children prolefeed instead of kingsmanship. Yale and Harvard are no longer special.

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