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Winston

  1. When Friends Fight (language)

    This relentless bashing of The President over Turkey and The Kurds is asinine and needs to stop. Sometimes, allies have disagreements. There’s always the option of going Wilsonian multinationalist, and trying to “solve” the issue. Not only does that rarely work, but it often creates more problems. The nation-building after WWI helped set-up the conditions that set WWII ablaze. And Africa is still paying for that hubris.

    News flash: President Trump is a nationalist. I know ...
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  2. Deconstructing, Man (language, drugs)

    A guilty pleasure of mine is the 1993 movie “Demolition Man”. Good lord, what campy fun. Sandra Bullock was SO hot. And, for those of you so inclined, Stallone was in good shape. Actually, both actors have aged well. I don’t know what happened to Wesley Snipes. I think he fled the country on tax evasion.

    As an aficionado of the dark art of dystopian storytelling, this movie resonated with me. The script writers borrowed liberally from Aldous Huxley’s masterpiece “Brave New ...
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  3. The Minimalist

    I don't remember when my wife started calling me that. As long as I can remember, my default mode was doing the most with the least. Before it became fashionable, I just aimed for low impact.

    The Marines was a real eye-opener for me. Never before had I been exposed to such a large number of loud, strutting peacocks. I understood it was part of the game, and I played my part. Hey, I can pull up my "command voice" and put the fear of God into a person, even today. But ...
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  4. Total Lying BS

    (Just saw what they were up to on Capitol Hill today. 535 intellectual midgets)

    Gotta call it what it is, sorry.

    I’ve railed against this inane, futile tendency to embrace the “Do Something!” delusion. Here is the case in point. I’m reading news releases highlighting the US Congress’ efforts to curtail gun ownership in an effort to limit “gun violence” (i.e. people committing violent crime with certain weapons). The current focus is to make it more difficult for ...
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  5. A Dead Wire

    I know some of you have strong opinions regarding the place of electric bikes in the future of motorcycling (*cough Plasticweld cough*). But they are here. And in my opinion, here to stay.
    Granted, these initial models leave a lot to be desired, particularly in the range department. The best models only get about 100 to 150 combined city / highway miles between charges. But that deficiency isn't a problem for folks looking for a hassle-free commuter. I used to ride 40 miles a day, and ...
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  6. The Science of Motorcycle Maintenance

    Screw Rob Pirsig and his stupid book. There is no "art" to working on a motorcycle. And Zen on your own time.

    There was no art to the way my bike leaned on it's side stand. It was balanced improperly, and on uneven ground it never sat stable. I could have meditated on the steady-state of the Universe, and come to the acceptance of my crappy kick-stand. Nope. Apologies to my Hawaiian relatives: I'm makin' it mo betta.

    Honda made a good bike, but it ...
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  7. Back to School, '19-'20

    Well, it's that time of year that those of us with school-age kids love to hate. We love it because the rug-rats get outta our hair and into someone else's. We hate it because it's time to buy stuff.

    In today's society, we're buying things for our kids that previous generation would never have thought of. Hand cleaner? Christ. That's what sinks were for.

    But here's a recent addition: Backpack armour. With all these mass shootings, many people are considering up-armoring ...

    Updated August 26th, 2019 at 12:07 AM by Winston

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  8. Enough / Overkill

    Few human habits irritate me more than the tendency for people to spread "Do Something!" disease.
    I'm a minimalist, fatalistic, Darwinistic, cold-blooded SOB. That said, I like a good idea as much as anyone else. As a matter of fact, I LOVE good ideas. I also like Unicorns, guilt-free ice cream and honest politicians.
    Yes, good ideas are that rare. But that doesn't stop mobs of idiots from foisting dumb, ineffective ideas on the public, and pretending that they are ...

    Updated August 18th, 2019 at 10:08 PM by Winston

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  9. (Insert Catchy Blog Title Here)... and some vulgarity follows

    Mega rant: I'm feeling angry, sad, sardonic and fearful.

    Does a fish know it's wet? Does the fish realize it's filtering it's own waste, and all of the other fish's waste through it's gills? Of course not. It's just a fish.
    Does the average person realize the crap that they "swim" through? No. And if they do get a whiff, they just know it's the other fish's effluent, not their own.

    I'm (almost) speechless regarding this new Vivendi / Universal ...

    Updated August 11th, 2019 at 06:53 PM by Winston

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  10. Clown Car

    You know that trope that it’s impossible to just drive by a car wreck and not look? Sure, it’s sick, and morally questionable, but everyone does it. It’s just human nature.

    That can be the only reason that I like watching the Democratic Debates. It’s like the typical smoldering wreck on the side of the road, only it’s a Clown Car.

    As they all crawl out of the twisted mess, you wonder where all these clowns came from. There’s a happy faced clown that likes to spread ...
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  11. Hatin'

    I grew up a few miles north of a suburb of San Francisco called Berkley. They have this little college there, maybe you've heard of it. It was kind of a big deal in the 60's and 70's. Berkley was famous for this thing called the "Free Speech Movement". If that doesn't ring a bell with you, I'm not surprised. The whole concept has fallen out of favor. Horse and Buggy stuff, that is.

    As a kid, I remember the protests. I remember the screaming, the anger, and the hatred. ...
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  12. Evening-Out Excellence

    My wife and I had to drive down to Oregon to pick up our son and other cadets from their Leadership Academy. My boy is exhausted. A ton of physical activity and sleep deprivation rank high on the curriculum. He's up and about now, having earned his feeling of accomplishment.

    I just can't not notice one thing. Female cadets average about 10 to 15 percent in our unit, and the other units I've seen at regional competitions. Yet, at the graduation ceremony, approximately 40% were ...

    Updated July 1st, 2019 at 12:55 AM by Winston

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  13. Field Trip

    My wife and I checked out some properties today. We don't have an agent yet, this trip was just to get an idea of what we are looking at in-person.
    I mean, looking at stuff on-line doesn't cut it. At least not for me.

    The first property was larger, and the agency said it had special tax status for being "working woodland" (harvestable timber). So, we could periodically sell timber, and pay less tax. We need less than an acre for our homestead, and that leaves ...
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  14. Daydreaming to Planning

    It would be hyperbole to say that I "hate" where I am now. There's a lot of positives to our neighborhood: Close to the grocery store, public transportation and public safety (fire & police). Traffic ain't bad, even though people drive faster now (and / or, I'm just getting older).
    When we first moved here, our kids were young, and the neighborhood was new. There were a lot of young couples, and our kids all played together. Now, the kids are grown, and a lot of of our ...
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  15. Same Rant, Different Numbskulls

    A few days ago, a Chicago Cubs player hit a foul ball that connected with a young child. The player (Almora) was visibly shaken, but honestly was just doing his job. You know who wasn't doing their job? The kid's parents.

    OOOOOH! Winston is parent-shaming! Yep. Someone has to.

    I'm donning my Captain Obvious hat here. The lower rows of a baseball park are dangerous. Balls, sometimes bats fly unpredictably into the stands.
    Even the most dim-witted, distracted ...
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  16. Karaoke

    I just had another one of those time-travel moments. Not a real head-screw like Billy Pilgrim in Slaughterhouse 5. Just a step back.

    I was in that bar in Okinawa Japan, circa 1987. Karaoke was a big deal back in-the-day, and Japan was the birthplace. A handful of old drunk guys in sloppy suits were wailing at the bar. They were so drunk, the three of them took turns holding each other up. Lean to the left. Lean to the right. Almost fall off the barstool. Laugh. Sing. Cry. ...
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  17. Another Finger on The Scale

    I don't know how many of you saw this little turd deposited in our societal punchbowl:

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/comp...wix?li=BBnb7Kz

    No, this wasn't posted on The Onion. It was in The Wall Street Journal.
    This stuff is both asinine, and scary at the same time. It seems each day that we are inching closer to being finished as a functional, sane society.
    ...
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  18. A Better Place, Revisited

    I've always seen that phrase masquerading as a refuge for the shallow minded and dismissive. When someone in your life dies, the impulse for most people is to tell you that your loved one is "...in a better place" now. This paper-thin logic assumes two unproveable points: Where we are now sucks, and where we go from here is somehow better.

    Second point first. The frail human condition predisposes us toward a belief in Nirvana, Valhalla, or some other higher realm. ...
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  19. Grog

    I've received two lessons in this topic in the last month: Once from a historical re-enactor at Mount Vernon, then again last night at the Navy Ball.
    It must mean that I was meant to share my new-found knowledge(?)

    I'm sure most folks have heard of the word "grog", and know it has some nautical meaning. In fact, grog was a vital part of The Age of Sail and naval history. The water stowed aboard ship got slimy and foul tasting after a few months at sea. It was ...
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  20. The Capitol, Continued

    After the parade, my daughter and I decided to look for a bite. We saw some food trucks the day before, and began searching the streets around The National Mall. We figured out later that because of the Cherry Blossom Festival the city had erected a bunch of no-parking zones and kicked them out. We settled for some mediocre chain sandwich and salad shop up by the White House.
    My girl wanted to check-out the Renwick Gallery, which was next to the White House. First, we stopped by the WH ...
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  21. The Capitol

    It always makes me feel like I'm a Tribute from some outlying District when I arrive. The flagrant opulence and power. You never see President Snow, though...
    It was my second trip to Washington D.C. The first was four years ago, so see my daughter perform in the annual Cherry Blossom Festival. This time, it was to see my son perform in the same band.
    First off, who designs these airline seats? The Marquis de Sade? I've seen thicker padding on prison mattresses (don't ask). I'm ...

    Updated April 22nd, 2019 at 02:53 AM by Winston

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  22. ...And The Wisdom to Know The Difference

    After talking with the new guy at work, I had kind of an epiphany. I was training Ron in the weekend procedures, and we had some down-time. We're about the same age, and despite different backgrounds, Ron and I have a similar outlook socially and politically. So talking to him was a bit like a springboard into my own perspectives.

    We were flummoxed by how many soft, pampered crybabies moan about every problem, large and small. We agreed it was a matter of perspective. For the ...
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  23. Earth... Whatever.

    I didn't even know it was a thing.

    A couple days ago, there was this thing they called "Earth Hour". If you're not "aware", the deal is for all you virtue signaling peeps to turn your lights out for an hour to show "...solidarity with the planet..." or some such nonsense. At first, I was upset that no one invited me to this event, and I resolved to turn every light on to max in protest. Then, a baseball game came on, and I thankfully forgot. ...
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  24. Zealots and Mediocrity

    I spend some time on other forums, focusing on outdoor activates such as camping, shooing, an homesteading. I'm an unapologetic Survivalist, and I enjoy listening to others' ideas regarding self sufficiency and the off-grid lifestyle. Discussions regarding the best non GMO crops rarely get heated, but gun discussions? My God, you'd think Martin Luther just heard the Edict of Worms was decreed. Holy War is declared.

    There are many battles in this Flame War, but the most vehement, ...
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  25. ICYMI W/E 2/24/19

    Ok, so the Vietnam summit is on. The bromance continues between Kim and Trump. Skeptics (rightfully) point out that Kim has a weak hand, and not much motivation to go "all-in". This is where Trump needs to prove to us, once and for all, what a good businessman he is. Trump's only play is to "sell" Vietnam's style of state-run capitalism as a model for North Korea. Kim's country is a wreck, everyone know that. It really may be possible that there is a way out for them. ...

    Updated February 25th, 2019 at 11:59 PM by Winston

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