Walkabout In The Weminuche Wilderness

Herschel Smith · 05 Aug 2018 · 41 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]

Notre Dame Fire “Computer Glitch”

BY Herschel Smith
7 months ago

News from AP:

The cathedral’s rector said a “computer glitch” may have played a role in the rapidly spreading blaze that devastated the 850-year-old architectural masterpiece.

[ … ]

Paris police investigators said they believe an electrical short-circuit most likely caused the fire. It’s believed to be one of multiple leads being investigated.

Um … what?  A “computer glitch” isn’t an electrical short.  The two are very different things.  So if you think this is all from a “computer glitch,” send the coding our way.  I have readers who understand C++, and I can code in FORTRAN.  I think we can help.

I’m not getting that good warm fuzzy feeling that they’re taking this seriously and being forthcoming and honest about it.

Paul Joseph Watson Explains Why Buzzfeed And Politico Suck

BY Herschel Smith
7 months 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.

Understanding Who Was Responsible For The Burning Of Notre Dame

BY Herschel Smith
7 months 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.

The Burning Of Notre Dame

BY Herschel Smith
7 months, 1 week 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.


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