Sunday, December 15, 2013

Around the blogs

There's another bumper harvest from the blogosphere this week.

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Tam describes a conversation with Roberta that links to what the latter describes as an 'odd and pretentious' web site.  That just about describes it!  I've never seen such ridiculously high prices for common-or-garden items that I can buy elsewhere for a small fraction of what they advertise.  Still, it's entertaining to flip through it - if only as an illustration of how fools and their money are soon parted, even (or perhaps particularly) over the Internet.

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Divemedic discovers an interesting article about 'earthships', which appears to be a new name for old-fashioned dug-in or semi-buried homes.  Despite its hippyness (one can almost smell the patchouli coming off one's screen), there are some interesting things to learn from it.  Those wanting to live off-grid or prepare for emergencies might find it useful.

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Rev. Paul reminds us that 'a cat's gotta do what a cat's gotta do' . . .

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A recent controversy between Liberty Bottleworks and one of its customers is making waves on Facebook and in the blogosphere.  Kudos to the company for putting the welfare and interests of its employees ahead of commercial pressures, particularly during this over-hyped shopping season.  It's good to see there are still corporations that do so.  I recommend watching the TV news report at the link.  It's heartwarming.

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Murphy's Law confesses to being a technological dinosaur.  From the way he describes it, I think he's a neo-Luddite tyrannosaurus, forcing others back into his dinosaur era whether they like it or not!

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OldAFSarge mentions 'the world's smallest political quiz'.  It's offered by a group promoting a libertarian approach.  As with most such online quizzes, it's pretty simplistic, but it's different from the usual 'where-are-you-on-the-left-wing-to-right-wing-political-continuum' tests.  I scored as a libertarian centrist, which is probably a fairly accurate assessment.  Give it a try and see where you end up on the grid.

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American Mercenary responds to a commenter by going into detail about the risks involved in trusting very old ammunition for anything except training purposes.  Having personally seen very old artillery ammunition go off with a bang (outside a cannon) I can't help but agree with him!  Worthwhile reading for shooters.

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Francis Porretto has three articles about conservatism.  The first two are interesting enough, but the third, concerning what he calls 'The Death of Character', is a masterpiece.  I particularly enjoyed his citing the Brazen Rule (explained here, along with other such 'rules') and the Noachite Commandments, neither of which I encounter frequently in modern discourse.  I recommend his article as food for thought.

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Old NFO's on a roll this week.  He cites numerous 'Laws we live under, like it or not', including such gems as:

  • LAW OF MECHANICAL REPAIR – After your hands become coated with grease, your nose will begin to itch and you’ll have to pee.
  • LAW OF GRAVITY – Any tool, nut, bolt, screw, when dropped, will roll to the least accessible corner.
  • LAW OF PROBABILITY – The probability of being watched is directly proportional to the stupidity of your act.

He tops that with 'Questions that may never be answered', including:

  • If a parsley farmer is sued, can they garnish his wages?
  • If a book about failures doesn’t sell, is it a success?
  • How do you know when it’s time to tune your bagpipes?
  • When you choke a smurf, what color does it turn?

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Bill Whittle uses the example of the shards of Narsil, the sword of Elendil, reforged as Anduril, the sword of Aragorn, as an encouragement for himself and us all to continue our struggle against the 'dying of the light'.

The history of mankind has been to rule and to be ruled. For reasons that you and I will never understand, there exists in some people an insatiable desire to tell other people what to do; to bend others to their will. I suspect that every single one of those hearts is filled with a dread, a genuine horror, at the wasteland of their own emptiness, and so the bombast and the narcissism and the arrogance; the legions of fainting faithful and the roar of the applause; the reflections, the logos, the insertion of themselves into every event in history; the mind-numbing obsession with power – all of these, I think, are just shovels full of coal being pitched into the bottomless furnace of their own self-hatred.

And so here we sit, sons and daughters, grand- and great-grand-sons and daughters of the Greatest Generation who went ashore at Normandy and Iwo Jima, who died in submarines in the Pacific and in the skies over Germany, who freed the world from darkness everlasting then helped our mortal enemies to their feet and freed them from themselves as well. And everything they fought and died for, and the men before them, and the ones before them, is being washed out to sea in front of our eyes and we sit here paralyzed by our comfort and our shame.

I do, anyway.

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Anduril reminds me that there is no Greatest Generation. There is no sword broken; there is no Golden Age lost and locked in the past. There are only shards lying before us, waiting for us to gather the will to reforge and wield them. It’s a decision, not a doom or a destiny, and we have to make it every day.

I don’t know if we can stop the destruction of everything we love in this world. I don’t know that we can destroy this all-seeing eye that seems to watch us all now, day and night, in this once-free land. I don’t know if all of my efforts will amount to anything at all, in the end, and I don’t know if yours will either.

I only know that every day I will make a decision to do everything I can to make sure my land, my realm, my America does not fall into darkness today.

There's much more at the link.  Recommended.

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Finally, on a sobering note, Nicki links to a lengthy article claiming that the Wounded Warrior Project is 'a fraud making millions off disabled veterans'.  The author produces evidence that seems convincing.  My only question is, if this is true, why haven't the authorities intervened by now?  I'd have thought the Department of Defense would be more than willing to expose such a fraud.  Be that as it may, there's enough meat on this particular bone (including Charity Navigator's observation that well over 40% of the funds raised by WWP go to expenses) to persuade me that my dollars can be more fruitfully directed to other charities serving our veterans.

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That's all for this week.  More soon.



Old NFO said...

Thanks Peter, and yeah that cat is hilarious!!!

The Old Man said...

That news has reached my American Legion Post. Our Americanism Officer checked out TWWP and recommended we send no cash to them. Thanks for spreading the word - I forgot.