Walkabout In The Weminuche Wilderness

Herschel Smith · 05 Aug 2018 · 39 Comments

"There are no socialists in the bush" - HPS All of my physical training only barely prepared me for the difficulty of the Weminuche Wilderness (pronounced with the "e" silent).  It's National Forest land, not National Park.  The Department of Agriculture no longer prints maps of the area, so we relied on NatGeo for the map, and it's good, but not perfect. We have a lot of ground to cover, including traveling with firearms, the modification I made to one of my guns for the trip, the actors…… [read more]

South Carolina Church Vandalized, Islamist Messages Painted On Walls

BY Herschel Smith
16 hours, 20 minutes ago

WSPA.com:

ANDERSON CO., SC (WSPA) – Deputies are looking for the person or persons responsible for vandalizing a church in Anderson County.

The Anderson County Sheriff’s Office says someone broke windows and spray painted messages on the side of Midway Presbyterian Church on Midway Road.

According to deputies, the windows in the church were over 125 years old.

The words “SUBMIT TO GOD THRU ISLAM” and “MUHAMMED IS HIS PROPHET” were spray pained in black onto the siding of the church.

Elders of the church tell 7News they did not let the act of vandals disturb their services and lunch on Sunday.

“It was very disturbing because we feel like this was an individual act and we don’t hold any religious group responsible for it,” said Bob Harrell. “We think it most likely was some misguided young people. However, we do take it very seriously and we’ll do everything we can to assist law enforcement.”

As I’ve said, prepare now.

If you are a member of a church and attend worship regularly, do you have a security plan?  No, having an armed cop on duty isn’t a security plan.  Do you have a number of armed congregants in the building?  Have you trained together as a group?  Do you have overwatch?  Do you have security cameras?  Do you have patrols?  I’m talking about 24/365 security, or a recognition that if you don’t have that kind of security on your building, as the country trends towards Europe, you may lose the building.

Tomorrow will be too late.  This may be a prank, but it may not be.  You live in a different American than what your mother and father knew.

It didn’t take long after the church abdicated its responsibility to be salt and light before American went to hell.  I’ve often thought that premillennial dispensationalism (the belief that God has two different people, the Jews and the church, saved in different ways, with the church pulled out of the world in the “rapture” before the real fireworks begin), with its belief that “you don’t polish brass on a sinking ship,” was the best crafted lie in history to neuter and render the church powerless and lifeless.

I once asked a close friend, who is a dispensationalist, the following question.  “There isn’t a single time in history when God allowed His people (the church is His people) to abdicate responsibility to be salt and light, to turn over the arts and sciences to the godless, to give their children over the Baal, and follow the world rather than Christ, and get away with avoiding the consequences of their actions.  What makes you think God will do that for the church, since it has gotten in bed with Hollywood, allowed abortion on demand, voted for all manner of scum, failed to teach the world about God’s law, and turned its children over to the state for education?  What makes you think that God will snatch us out and allow us to avoid the consequences of our own behavior?”

His answer: “Just because it’s never happened doesn’t mean it won’t.”  That, people, is the voice of irrationality.

Prepare for judgment.  It is coming upon America, and you’re here at the beginning of it.

Paul Joseph Watson Explains Why Buzzfeed And Politico Suck

BY Herschel Smith
16 hours, 22 minutes ago

Via WRSA.  We all knew that Buzzfeed and Politico suck, but Paul Joseph Watson does such a good job of reminding us and refreshing the knowledge that it’s worth it to watch the entire video.  He is at his best.  The beatdown he gives Buzzfeed and Politico is simply epic.

Marines At The Chosin Reservoir

BY Herschel Smith
16 hours, 34 minutes ago

Shooting Illustrated:

On top of the freezing temperatures, the Marines faced tens of thousands of mostly Chinese soldiers around the Chosin Reservoir. This battle took place in November and December of 1950, and there were many reservoir veterans still on active duty when I became a Marine in 1957. Most of them agreed that the main effect of the sub-zero weather was to grind you down physically. Every physical act was much more difficult to perform, and the difficulty was magnified by a lack of sleep and cold food. This was the nature of what I call the Cold Fight—at the Chosin Reservoir—where it was the deadliest kind of infantry fighting under the worst kind of circumstances. In my view, the men who did these things were giants.

Not long after I entered the Marine Corps, I was at Quantico’s Basic School with several hundred other second lieutenants. I had transgressed in some way, and the Marine Corps thought it necessary for me to go explain my deficient behavior to the Executive Officer of the school. This was not the most-comfortable position for a newbie to be in, but I had no say in the matter. I’ll never forget the cold, unblinking eyes of LtCol Reginald Myers. He got it over quickly, making sure I understood that all rules and regulations were to be obeyed. Throughout the session, I was mesmerized by the top ribbon on his uniform blouse—light blue with a sprinkling of white stars. I had never seen one. As a major, he had been the XO of a battalion in the 1st Regiment at the reservoir. Given a scraped-together force of truck drivers, cooks and personnel from other services, he led them on an attack that kept the main road open for the division to pass. This involved setting an example for his troops and that meant getting out in front. Situations like this (leading unfamiliar troops under deadly conditions) are challenging.

Myers was not the only recipient of the Medal of Honor out of the Cold Fight. Over in the 7th Marines, F-company was commanded by William Barber, and he had his company controlling Toktong pass. This narrow place was essential for the 5th and 7th regiments to get out of the valley of Yudam-Ni. He fought, wounded, for several days and kept the pass open. It also happens that a private in one of his platoons put up a fight that defies easy description. Hector Cafferata fought all night with his M1 and hand grenades, several times stopping to bat Chinese grenades back with an entrenching tool. His feat of arms was all the more impressive in that he was caught with his boots off when it started. He was never able to get enough of a break to go find his boots and get them on. Capt Barber and Pfc Cafferata both received the Medal of Honor. Barber later said Cafferata may have killed as many as 100 Chinese soldiers. That puts him in the same class as one Daniel Daly atop the Tartar Wall in the Boxer Rebellion. Everywhere you look in the several histories of the battle, you run into more examples of incredible bravery.

I believe this campaign was the most-severe test ever of Marines and their fightin’ iron.

Today, women would be in the infantry Battalions, perhaps leading them, and there may be transgenders and gays along with them.

Do you think we could win a war like that today?

Understanding Who Was Responsible For The Burning Of Notre Dame

BY Herschel Smith
16 hours, 35 minutes ago

As a brief followup to my observations on The Burning Of Notre Dame, I thought I’d point out what it would take to make me happy concerning the post-mortem and investigation.

If the investigation is conducted by local fire department folks, it’s meaningless to me.  Even if the investigation is conducted by French fire engineers, it’s still meaningless.

No offense, but I’m completely uninterested in what fire fighters have to say about what happened.  I would like to see fully independent fire engineers, preferably not French engineers, conduct a thorough investigation and publish a fully peer reviewed report, unredacted, for my review.  In this case, fully peer reviewed means yet another independent set of eyes on the problem, with full concurrence in the conclusions before they are published, except for cases where disagreement exists, with those disagreements fully outlined as part of or an appendix to the main report.

Only then will I take the investigation seriously.

Will Red Flag Laws Be Used To Set Up Gun Owners?

BY Herschel Smith
1 day, 17 hours ago

David Codrea:

It’s fair to ask what protections will exist to prevent abuse and catch innocents up in a net that will strip them of rights and leave them on their own to fight a state with virtually unlimited resources?

What’s to stop false accusations, and incentives offered to make them?

Yes, the system will be abused, but I’ll go further.  Such abuse could only begin after an ungodly, unrighteous bill was signed into law.  There is no provision in the Scriptures for presuming to know the future and acting to punish people based on what you foresee they might do.  That’s God’s domain, not man’s.  In a Biblical economy, those guilty of divination are cut off from the people, a virtual death sentence.  See Leviticus 19:26-31, Leviticus 20:6, Deuteronomy 18:9-14, and many other passages.

The authors of this detestable thing have set themselves against God and upon the throne of the Almighty.

The Smart Gun Doesn’t Exist For The Smartest Reasons

BY Herschel Smith
1 day, 17 hours ago

That’s not actually the title of the idiotic Bloomberg article.  It’s titled The Smart Gun Doesn’t Exist for the Dumbest Reasons.

Smith & Wesson still feels the wound it suffered two decades ago when it decided to invent smart guns.

The idea was to invest heavily in the development of personalized weapons that could be fired only by a single person: the gun’s owner. This was considered a nearly science-fictional proposition in the late 1990s, years before the world was filled with smartphones and finger sensors. But consumer backlash against the project drove the gunmaker to the verge of ruin, and Smith & Wesson recently told shareholders that the corporate bleeding touched off by this long-ago episode has never fully stopped. “Sales still suffer from this misstep,” the company said in a February filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The ordeal also didn’t lead to technical breakthroughs, and Smith & Wesson never brought a smart gun to market. Nor has Sturm, Ruger & Co., Remington, Colt, Winchester, Mossberg, or Glock. It’s not clear that any other major gunmaker has seriously tried.

No one involved can quite agree on who’s to blame for the standstill. Gun manufacturers fault difficult-to-navigate technology. Investors and entrepreneurs are sure that restrictive legislation has created a dead end. Politicians blame each other.

Nobody blames the free market. Nearly half of gun owners in the U.S. would consider buying a smart gun, according to a Johns Hopkins University study. (Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg News parent Bloomberg LP, is a donor to groups that support gun control.) The promise of guns that can be used only by one person is that there will be fewer fired by accident or by someone who shouldn’t have access to a gun, and fewer sold on the black market.

This is the story of why the multibillion-dollar American gun industry hasn’t yet managed to make guns any smarter.

Stop right there.  Let me dissuade you from your fantasies, collectivists.  No gun owner actually wants something more complicated.  He wants to be able to work on his own gun rather than paying exorbitant fees for a gunsmith to rebuild or repair it.  He wants to be able to craft his own versions and variations.  He wants to be able to modularize it and put different parts on it if he deems it more comfortable, more ergonomic or simply better for him.

No gun owner wants yet another permissive in the process.  The U.S. military calls it the “kill chain.”  Even though you are probably repulsed by that term, we’ll use it anyway.  No gun owner wants yet another permissive in the kill chain.  That’s another potential failure that wasn’t there before.  And no gun owner wants another permissive in the kill chain that can be hijacked by either government officials or others.  This idea that half of potential gun owning America would actually drop cash on something like that is a lie you have told yourselves over and over until you actually believe it.

Trae Stephens isn’t afraid to put real money into a product most gunmakers are too anxious to touch. His venture capital firm, the Peter Thiel-backed Founders Fund, is noteworthy among its Silicon Valley peers for investing in defense and security. But two years spent looking at nearly a dozen different smart-gun startups aiming to raise seed or Series A rounds, valued in the six- to seven-figure range, haven’t turned up anything worth backing.

“I want to do this!” Stephens, 35, says with a wide grin at the firm’s office in San Francisco’s Presidio park. “But there’s just no way I can.”

It’s not easy finding a VC willing to speak openly about guns, let alone invest in them. There have been frequent calls for the technology industry to take on firearms, the type of stagnant industry that seems ripe for Silicon Valley disruption. President Barack Obama sounded the call for the Apples and Googles of the world to get into guns. “If we can set it up so you can’t unlock your phone unless you’ve got the right fingerprint,” he asked in 2016, “why can’t we do the same thing for our guns?” But funneling engineering resources into next-generation guns has proved anathema in the liberal Bay Area, even if the intention is to improve public safety.

Folks lament the demise of simpler automobile engines that could be maintained by the backyard mechanic.  Now many folks have to send their vehicle to be worked on by technicians who have been to school at Ford or GM to get repaired.  There is literally no way gun owners are going to make their firearms more complicated.  There is no way.

Wiring electronics into firearms feels like the inevitable next step for the tech industry, which has succeeded in putting motherboards in vacuum cleaners, microwaves, and doorbells. “I started to go down these long Google searches,” Stephens says. “Why is it the weapons we’re still using haven’t meaningfully changed since World War I?”

Because we like simple.  Simpler is better.  Again, wiring electronics into firearms is not the inevitable next step.

His research came up at a Founders Fund debrief with Thiel and the fund’s other partners. “I said, ‘Look, there’s zero chance that any of these companies will actually make money. Am I missing something?’ ” he said. “The answer was no. And that was it. End of conversation.”

And that’s it.  That’s all you need to know.  There’s more in the article, but they could have shut it down right there and been just fine.

And I repeat what I’ve said so many times before concerning “smart guns.”

Perform a fault tree analysis of smart guns.  Use highly respected guidance like the NRC fault tree handbook.

Assess the reliability of one of my semi-automatic handguns as the first state point, and then add smart gun technology to it, and assess it again.  Compare the state points.  Then do that again with a revolver.  Be honest.  Assign a failure probability of greater than zero (0) to the smart technology, because you know that each additional electronic and mechanical component has a failure probability of greater than zero.

Get a PE to seal the work to demonstrate thorough and independent review.  If you can prove that so-called “smart guns” are as reliable as my guns, I’ll pour ketchup on my hard hat, eat it, and post video for everyone to see.  If you lose, you buy me the gun of my choice.  No one will take the challenge because you will lose that challenge.  I’ll win.  Case closed.  End of discussion.

And to date, no one has taken the challenge.

FOIA Request Confirms Zero Standard Capacity Magazines Turned In To NJ State Police

BY Herschel Smith
1 day, 17 hours ago

John Crump writing at Ammoland.

Off the record, State Police sources told AmmoLand no magazines were turned in. We filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to get the official answer from State Police officials. Our first request went unanswered, so we sent another, then another, and so on until we finally received a response from the State Police.

SGT Kristina Pados of the New Jersey State Police responded to our FOIA request. She confirmed what our sources inside the New Jersey Police told us. The gun owners of New Jersey have surrendered no magazines.

However, she did state that local departments might have them.

AmmoLand reached out to local police departments across New Jersey and have not been able to find a single magazine turned over to the authorities. It would seem like the gun owners of New Jersey have decided to ignore the law most likely because it is unenforceable.

So what’s next?  Do the state police plan to go door-to-door busting in and searching for magazines?  I suspect not.

Is It Safe For S.C.’s Lindsey Graham To Write A Gun Bill?

BY Herschel Smith
1 day, 17 hours ago

McClatchy.

U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham supports laws to temporarily revoke guns from people who might harm themselves or others, and he’s working on legislation that would give grants to states that pass such statutes.

It’s a controversial position among gun rights advocates, but the South Carolina Republican’s not worried about alienating his base.

“Not my base,” he said of his opponents of this issue, adding they are the “the fringe of the fringe.

“I think most Americans believe that multiple murderers shouldn’t have gun rights. Most Americans support background checks,” Graham continued. “The Second Amendment’s important to me, but it’s not a suicide pact.”

The “fringe of the fringe.”  That’s how Miss Graham sees you and me.  And she’s lying.  This bill isn’t about preventing “multiple murderers” from getting guns.  That’s already covered in the laws.  This bill is about removing God-given rights from people who have committed absolutely no crime whatsoever.

From the department of pre-crime, Miss Graham knows what you’re going to do before you do it.  And the voters of South Carolina will flock right to her corner on election day because of a few nice things she said about Trump, the other gun grabber who gave us the bump stock ban and suggestion for red flag laws, something even Obama never did.

Liars and soldiers of the Trojan Horse, they are.

The Burning Of Notre Dame

BY Herschel Smith
2 days, 16 hours ago

I neither listen to the radio nor watch television.  But today while driving my radio had turned on because I had just stopped for petrol and restarted the truck.  Unfortunately, I was listening to Shep Smith with Fox News.

The man is a child, mentally, spiritually and emotionally.  Speaking with the utmost unction and dramatic pauses for effect, he stated something like that even if one is not religious, the Cathedral of Notre Dame was a testament and tribute to “the highest aspirations of man,” and showed what man can accomplish.

Hear me well.  The structure has nothing whatsoever to do with why the Cathedral was built.  The highest aspirations of man built the tower of Babel, an abject failure, not the Notre Dame.  He can speak with personal conviction all he wants about witnessing the Cathedral in person and being astonished at the architecture, art and design.  He entirely missed the point of it all, like an insect flying in the space shuttle or a bird caught inside the dome of a reactor building wondering why he can’t get out rather than how we’ve harnessed the power of the atom (I’ve witnessed such a bird before).  He didn’t even begin to grasp any significant element of the story.

I am not a Roman Catholic.  I am a Protestant, and more specifically, a Calvinist.  My theological hero and the prefect of Rome did historic battle.  Upon Christ’s death on the cross, the veil of the Holy of Holies was torn asunder (Matt 27:51).  I do not confess my sins to another man, and I do not seek forgiveness from them unless I have wronged them.  There is no mediator between God and man (including me) except Christ Jesus.  The entire two millennia history of Roman Catholicism has been an attempt to sew the veil back together again.

With all of that said, there is something unique about the architectural history of the church that is admirable.  Cathedrals aren’t built like stadiums where something man is accomplishing becomes the center of focus (witness the Roman coliseums where Christians perished, or Paul’s sermon on Mars Hill, the Areopagus).  The entire purpose of the design and construction of the Cathedral was to point man higher, to the Almighty, to the only one who is worthy of worship.  Shep Smith and simpletons like him have it exactly backwards.

On the other hand, the so-called body of Christ is His people, those who have received His salvation.  In the early church, they met in homes, and even then were arrested sometimes almost immediately after receiving baptism.  That was the sequence.  Receive Christ, confess His name, receive baptism, and perish.  They were serious about their business, it was no casual affair.

Notre Dame can burn, but the group of His people, the church, the few who are left in France, remains, as it ever will across the world.  It could also be observed that Notre Dame represented a vanquished, defeated, eviscerated church.  There was nothing left.  Today, France belongs to Camus, Sartre and Derrida.  They believe nothing, so it was only a building that burned.  It was even owned by the state and permanently leased to the Roman Catholic Church.

From Wirecutter, we learn that twelve French churches have been attacked and vandalized within one week alone.  That seems more than coincidence.  Also, via WRSA there is a long discussion thread about other incidents, including the fact that on Friday, “Islamic terrorist Inez Madani was jailed for eight years for her attempted car bombing outside of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.”

I don’t know the cause of the blaze.  I suspect that it was either [a] Islamic terrorists, or [b] unintentionally started.  In the first case, I’ll ask the same question I’ve asked before: If you are a member of a church and attend worship regularly, do you have a security plan?  No, having an armed cop on duty isn’t a security plan.  Do you have a number of armed congregants in the building?  Have you trained together as a group?  Do you have overwatch?  Do you have security cameras?  Do you have patrols?  I’m talking about 24/365 security, or a recognition that if you don’t have that kind of security on your building, as the country trends towards Europe, you may lose the building.

If this fire was started inadvertently, it’s malfeasance.  All accidents are preventable.  All accidents are preventable.  Someone didn’t fully think through and implement pre-job briefs, training, fire suppression, fire watch, use of welding blankets and other protective measures, communication of expectations to craft, construction of proper temporary ventilation, and proper safety engineering.  I suspect the Spire became a chimney pulling air into the bottom of the building, with a heat source, heat sink, and the heat sink (the atmosphere) at a higher elevation than the heat source.  All of the elements for natural circulation were there.  A good engineer would have known this and planned for it.

This also has vast implications for congregants in American churches today.  If you do something like this, you’ll go bankrupt paying settlements for damage, lose your building, possibly cause injury or death, and get shut down by OSHA.

I won’t worship where I’m not allowed to carry the weapon of my choice, not because I won’t carry non-permissively (I do at times), but because that shows a reflexive reversion to the “Jesus was a Bohemian peacenik, pacifist, hippie, flower child” cult.  And if I see something unsafe, I’ll say something or even do what it takes to stop work, regardless of what that entails.

Times are changing.  Times have already changed.  Change with the times.

S.C. Lawmakers Wisely Back Away From Open Carry Laws

BY Herschel Smith
2 days, 17 hours ago

So says some dude named Brian Hicks.

A substitute teacher in Alabama accidentally fired his gun in a first-grade classroom recently. No one was hurt, luckily.

In Michigan, a man threw his shoe at a cockroach — forgetting that’s where he kept his pistol. He literally shot himself in the foot.

And in New Mexico, a driver showing off his 9 mm to a friend in the passenger seat accidentally shot a woman … in the car next to them.

All these accidents occurred within the past month. Know what else they have in common?

They all happened in states that allow open carry, which means just about anyone can carry a gun anywhere, whether or not they know the first thing about firearms.

Well, there are a lot of categories under which we could put this formal logical fallacy, but let’s begin with affirming the consequent (or the undistributed middle).  The failures he mentioned could have been related to names, education, the first letters of the states they live in, or any of a number of things.  Brian is merely affirming that he knows the cause of the failures and that they all related to constitutional carry.  He has not demonstrated anything with this bit of misleading prose  Let’s continue.

And some folks wonder why South Carolina lawmakers are hesitant to pass an open carry law here.

Well, it’s not going to happen this year. The controversial legislation is unofficially off the table — because law enforcement is treating a social media post as a threat on Charleston state Rep. Peter McCoy’s life.

You read that correctly.

The Freedom Action Network of South Carolina posted an incendiary statement on Facebook blaming McCoy for the Legislature’s failure to turn this state into the Wild West.

This bit of emotional hyperbole is exactly the same as what they said in Texas before it became an open carry state, and it’s meant for ignorant people to read.  In fact, it’s what every state has said, and South Carolina is one of the few remaining holdouts, along with California, Hawaii, New York and New Jersey.  How about that, Brian.  Aren’t you ensconced a bit far to the South to be following the lead of New Yorkers?  Let’s continue with this messy commentary.

Most say open carry is foolhardy and dangerous.

They’re right. The proposed South Carolina open carry law would let anyone carry a gun onto school grounds and into public parks or bars without demonstrating they know the difference between a clip and a trigger.

I’m sure they do, Brian.  Law enforcement doesn’t like it when they can’t be special.  But I think you’re lying.  I don’t think you really want LEOs to be banned from openly carrying weapons, you just want people who aren’t special to remain banned.  But if you were honest, you’d see that it’s cops who perpetrate most of the negligent discharges, shoot most of the innocent people, and cause the most danger to the community.

Well, that about does it.  If you want to read the rest of Brian’s droll commentary, I’ve linked it.  But if you don’t like “propaganda,” Brian, how about a little truth-telling.  You’re a communist, just like the state senator who was looking for an excuse to terminate consideration of the open carry bill in S.C.  And the fact that the senate was already looking for ways to kill the bill makes us wonder what else was going on behind the scenes.


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