Archive for guns go boom

ailment

Posted in rankers, politcs, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on 6, March 2014 by chockblock

Ah the sound of liberal hurt feelings:

This is just the crisis to make themselves seem relevant again within the GOP—even if they’re undermining the commander in chief at a pivotal moment.
Why Neocons Love the StrongmanMichael Tomasky, The Daily Beast


It’s likely, then, that the J-20 no more represents the end of US air superiority than did Cope India or the T-50’s debut. What it does represent is the world’s second economy finally joining a club of nations long-accustomed to designing, building and operating advanced fighter aircraft.
China’s Over-Hyped Stealth Jet, David Axe, The Diplomat.


Meanwhile, it remains to be seen how much the J-20’s design changes matter and indeed how effective an aircraft it is. But it is evident that the plane’s flight testing, at least, is far more than just a publicity stunt.
Stealth Changes for China’s Stealth FighterGERRY DOYLE, NEW YORK TIMES. Gobssmacks David Axe.

It must hurt when reality overtakes liberal fantasy.

For decades the left’s orthodoxy was that the West was to make peace with Russia/The USSR, China and that “the tide of war was receding”.

Russia is INVADING the Ukraine. They used TBM’s on Georgia. China is building a modern networked force.

And yet, Michael Tomasky makes current events be all about the left and how those meanie Neo-cons runied everything.

Lest we forget, the media and the left (I repeat myself) went easy on Putin, Hugo Chavez and China. David Axe seems to think that the US military sucks and we have nothing to fear.

So when real life starts to hurt them, they either face reality (and start crying) or escape to fantasy.

President Obama’s foreign policy is based on fantasy.
— Washington Post, Editorial Board

And so it begins.

The ATF’s new building

Posted in politcs, rankers, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , on 20, January 2014 by chockblock

There is a plan to name the new ATF headquarters after Elliot Ness:

Moreover, Eig writes that Ness played around on his wife, tried to cover up an accident in which he was involved while driving drunk, he drank too much, and ended up selling frozen hamburger patties in the last years of his life because he was strapped for cash.

To summarize, Ness didn’t get his man, he had questionable morals, he probably was an alcoholic, he covered up a crime, he couldn’t manage his money, and he was prone to wild exaggeration about his accomplishments.
–“Naming ATF Headquarters After Eliot Ness Might Actually Be Appropriate ” No Lawyers, Only Guns and Money.

Given that the ATF gave guns to Mexican cartels in exchange for some info, I agree.

14th amendment means nothing to these people

Posted in politcs, rankers, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on 4, August 2013 by chockblock

Via Gun Free Zone:

The Brady Campaign, on behalf of Mr. Vesely, asked the court to abandon traditional rules of tort liability and find that Armslist could be liable for the criminal actions of the man who killed Ms. Vesely. In essence, the Brady Campaign argued that a special rule should apply to Armslist because the advertisements on its website were for firearms, and it should therefore be treated differently than other online classifieds sites

via NRA-ILA | Federal Court in Illinois Throws Out Brady Campaign Supported Lawsuit.

This is bad. If not for a judge, the Brady Campaign would have the rules bent in it’s favor. This is gun control. It was never about guns, it’s about control.

The demonization of George Zimmerman was but one tentacle of the beast, this is the other.

This is journalism?

Posted in rankers, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 16, August 2012 by chockblock

Behold:

When are drone killings illegal?
By Mary Ellen O’Connell, Special to CNN

“(CNN) — The Bush and Obama administrations’ extraordinary program of targeted killing has resulted in the deaths of as many as 4,400 people to date. Books such as Daniel Klaidman’s “Kill or Capture” and David E. Sanger’s “Confront and Conceal” are appearing thick and fast, focusing on the program and particularly on the use of drones to carry it out.”

The picture they use is an unarmed U.S. Customs and Border Protection MQ-9 Reaper. Far from an armed killer, it’s spent it’s life finding drugs on the border.

Furthermore, the author uses this website:
Lefty propaganda

Yep, America is on the rampage again. *sigh*

Lefty bullshit propaganda disguised as reporting the facts.

Update: At least they fixed the picture…

Hot Crew! : Lauren Cohan

Posted in guns, HOOAH!, politcs, rankers, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , on 16, August 2012 by chockblock

Lauren Cohan (born November 30 1982) is an American-born British actress, writer, and producer. Her most recognized roles to date are Bela Talbot on Supernatural and Maggie Greene in The Walking Dead. She is also known for her roles as Rose on The Vampire Diaries and Vivian Volkoff in Chuck. (Wikipeida)

F_k Yeah she’s awesome!

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Defense Tech: or why Apple can’t build a jet fighter

Posted in HOOAH!, politcs, rankers, tech pron, Uncategorized, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on 28, July 2012 by chockblock

The future of military technology is the kind of high-tech engineering in which American companies already are the established leaders. So why not let the Air Force ask Apple to design an iFighter? Or let the Navy ask Google to design the software architecture to power its ships and submarines? That company’s skunk-works innovation team, Google X, has now developed a car that drives itself on the streets of San Francisco. Why not tap that expertise for the Pentagon’s future unmanned systems?
“What If Apple Designed an iFighter?”:Arthur Herman, The Wall Street Journal.

Some idiot pines for the Spitfire. It’s cheap origin is a myth.

MIL-SPEC was a punch line for years. Now it’s a major market, products advertised as “mil-spec” are highly valued.

The old saying “GI proof” used to mean making something so tough that a soldier fresh from bootcamp couldn’t break it even if he tried. Something of a joke in the draft-era military because anyone could be assigned to repair and maintain anything (from airplanes to rifles). Of course building things for the military meant making them rough, rugged and designed for their roles. After the war, the allies forged several agreements called STANAGs. Between that and MIL-SPEC the military forged a standard. Things are built for battle and can be shared among allies. If need be, an American Patriot missile unit can work with an allied Patriot unit and vice versa. Many commercial products you use at home are hardened for the battlefield. Other widgets are purpose built.

However the expense of designing things for the military led to Commercially available Off-The-Shelf or COTS. Take it away wikipeida:

In the United States, Commercially available Off-The-Shelf (COTS) is a Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) term defining a nondevelopmental item (NDI) of supply that is both commercial and sold in substantial quantities in the commercial marketplace, and that can be procured or utilized under government contract in the same precise form as available to the general public. For example, technology related items, such as computer software, hardware systems or free software with commercial support, and construction materials qualify, but bulk cargo, such as agricultural or petroleum products, do not.

Those dirty commies used to say that “quantity has a quality all it’s own”. And Desert Storm shat on that idea. The myth of low tech US military weapons in WWII is debunked by In From the Cold:

“How inferior was the Sherman? Consider these statistics from the Third Armored Division, which fought its way from the hedgerows of France to the heart of the Third Reich. In eleven months of heavy fighting, the unit lost over 700 Shermans destroyed and many more that were damaged, but repaired and returned to service. The units cumulative tank loss rate from D-Day to VE Day was roughly 700 percent. Only the ready availability of replacement tanks and crews(and the ability of maintenance personnel to repair damaged Shermans) kept the division in the fight.”

He’s referring to the M-4 Sherman. Many American tankers died, even as better tanks were held up by Army politics. There was the P-75 Eagle. It was a Frankenplane developed by General Motors. It never delivered on its promised performance. Thankfully an aircraft designer developed the P-51 Mustang.

DoD Buzz posits that a dedicated defense industry can design weapons for war. Why dedicated? Because defense contractors know what it’s like to get shot at. It’s not just hiring veterans, it’s building a system from the ground up that’s designed to fight AND taking data from the field (many times collected by service members themselves).

Many companies made dumb mistakes. Virtual Boy, Edsel, New Coke, the Apple Newton. None of those mistakes had a body count. Many companies got out of the defense business because the Cold War ended. Intel no longer makes microchips for the Pentagon (so much for the idea that war is good for the big corporations). From cables and connectors that break when used to tools that rust up when used in the rain, COTS may have low upfront costs but over the long term the DoD just buys more.

The military gets a lot of ribbing for the up-front costs of gear. But aside from tools, clothing and food, most equipment has to be designed, modified or bought in small quantities. Roll-on/Roll-off (RoRo) ships are a good example. There are many shipping companies and ship builders out there. Some even have car-carriers and ferries. But the military must buy the ships it needs, most commercial ships are not designed to carry 70+ ton tanks.

Most civilian companies don’t enter into the military market because of the boom and bust cycles inherit in defense. The end of the Cold War has led to massive shrinkage in the defense sector. Grumman built the planes that won WWII in the pacific, but today they are the IT arm of Northrup-Grumman. War is not for fun and profit.

Open source software has been a godsend to the DoD. Most computers (wither they are ‘ruggedized” or just the same kind you can get at Best Buy) have encryption software installed. Many have special software for communicating with units in the field. If the DoD had to pay for the operating systems and other software, less money would be available for mission critical software. LINUX, UNIX and now the Android OS are being welcomed by the military (after added security of course). Once again the military must modify and write the programs it needs. At least open source is cheaper.

WWII was the last big war where entire countries were mobilized to fight. After the war, the US kept a larger standing military. After Sputnik, the Pentagon and industry forged a partnership to keep the US ahead. Decades latter,after Vietnam, Afghanistan etc, the Cold War ended. Desert Storm showed off the high tech military. But declining budgets not only forced the military to do more with less so did rising personnel costs were a large factor as well.

Today’s military is an all volunteer force supported by a few big contractors. There are problems: field grade commanders who let power point slides do their thinking, civilian leaders who set unrealistic expectations and let the military take the fall, a defense industry that oversells its systems. But they are learning. Technology marched on. Propellers gave way to jets. Missiles took over from cannons and the lower enlisted are more important than ever.

Can companies with no military experience design weapons and IT systems? Maybe. Maybe we should let the subject matter experts do their job. Google and Apple can provide the framework, but defense companies and those in uniform need to do the hard work.

Mission Creep

Posted in ADA, army life, politcs, tech pron, War On Terror with tags , , , , , , , on 9, June 2012 by chockblock

Mission creep is the expansion of a project or mission beyond its original goals, often after initial successes.[1] Mission creep is usually considered undesirable due to the dangerous path of each success breeding more ambitious attempts, only stopping when a final, often catastrophic, failure occurs.
— Wikipeida

“The U.S. Army doesn’t want it, but the Department of Defense is saying: Yes, you do. The Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS) would be scuttled if Army commanders had their way, saying the missile defense program is too costly to develop, with a price tag of $19 billion. However, Pentagon officials and others in the Obama administration want MEADS, which is being developed in partnership with Germany and Italy, because killing the program could upset relations with the two European allies.”
Army vs. Lockheed Martin in Battle to Cancel Missile Defense System

Future Combat Systems (FCS) was the United States Army’s principal modernization program from 2003 to early 2009.[1] Formally launched in 2003, FCS was envisioned to create new brigades equipped with new manned and unmanned vehicles linked by an unprecedented fast and flexible battlefield network. In April and May 2009, Pentagon and Army officials announced that the FCS vehicle-development effort would be cancelled. The rest of the FCS effort would be swept into a new, pan-Army program called the Army Brigade Combat Team Modernization Program.[2]“
— Wikipeida

“January 11, 2011: The U.S. Army has finally, after over a decade of development, and no orders, cancelled its SLAMRAAM antiaircraft missile system. The U.S. defense budget is being cut, and those items lower on the “must have” list are being eliminated. Some $3 billion has been spent on SLAMRAAM so far, and it would cost another $12 billion to put it into production.”
SLAMRAAM Dies From Loneliness


“But the replacement program for the OH-58 was supposed to be the ARH-70, and it should have been generally a low risk program. Take the existing Bell 407 airframe, itself an evolution of the Bell 206 that gave us the Kiowa, and add sensors and weapons. Easy peasy. How that program fell to pieces is beyond me. I’m not an engineer or an aviator. I know there are always challenges, but the collapse of that program was a big surprise to me.”

Brad On why the Army is still flying Vietnam War-era choppers.

“found it surprising as well. From what I could determine the downfall of the program was the bane of so many programs in the military these days, refusing to freeze the specs. They allow a continuing larding of the program and change orders are expensive. Successful acquisition programs freeze the design and build more capability into the follow on models. The Army didn’t force a freeze, so costs ran away from them, and instead of getting a good first effort, they got nothing instead. Great, huh?”

Quartermaster nails it.

When defense contracts go beyond paper specs and RFP’s we’re talking about real money. And jobs. And promotions for those involved in the program. THAAD and the F-22 have parts made in almost all the 50 states. Military bases employ thousands all around the country. Of course Big Army and Congress also think about the men and women who’ll be fighting and fixing these systems. Of course.

The problem is that, like the Navy, Big Army wants cool and shiny. New computers? Sure why not. New radios and a new network? Okay. MEADS had three radars as opposed to the Patriot systems one. A maintenance headache that became a nightmare since the new radars have new parts. Add to the fact that our Warrant Officers and Soldiers under them would all have to be retrained. Adding to the costs of trying to field a new system.

The FCS tried too much at once. New network, new computers and sensors, new weapons AND new vehicles all under one roof. Almost all were canceled. After Iraq, the 50 ton FCS vehicles were dumped for the 70+ ton monsters. IED’s are a threat, but the infantry would ride in a vehicle with a weight approaching Hitler’s Maus. The only Ground the “Ground Combat Vehicle” may end up fighting on is a reinforced concrete runway.

SLAMRAAM died because the Army has to pay for the the FCS GCV and other shooty projects. Short range air defense? Who needs it with the Air Force and it’s F-22’s and F-35’s running the skies. Um..wait a minute…

We need reform, but most of the “reform” the pundits have in mind is to cancel everything. The left wants to stick it’s fingers in it’s ears and pretend that our ships and air craft don’t age. That our enemies are getting smarter and more deadly. The deficit hawks on the right only care about defense cuts when they threaten jobs in their districts. Otherwise they’ll cut and cut in the name of “savings.”

When contracts are fixed, cutting the number of widgets built skyrockets the price. In the 80’s the Dod let the contracts write in the costs of items. Nowadays we have “single source”, “no bid” and fixed price contracts coupled with design specs that waste more money than they save.

We can do better. We need to do better.

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