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April 29, 2016

We're Just About Done

Welp, the bathroom and living room are done.

The Barbi Bathroom Before -

During and After- (oops, forgot to include new pics)




April 28, 2016

And Just As They Were Turning Their Lives Around...

Biggest bust in NYC history. Close to 700 NYPD cops and federal law men take down two rival street gangs in a Bronx housing project. Unfortunately this will do little or  nothing in the long term. They just created a vacuum that will be filled in short order. I've seen this happen with other RICO busts. There may even be a spike in shootings as other wannabees struggle for dominance and as other gangs move in.
NEW YORK – Law enforcement rescued a Bronx housing project with the biggest takedown in New York City history and now, officials are investigating whether the city's 400,000 public housing residents were being protected in safe conditions as required by federal law, a federal prosecutor announced Wednesday.

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara told a news conference that nearly 700 New York Police Department officers and federal agents accompanied by helicopters and armored trucks executed pre-dawn raids, taking down two rival drug gangs from top to bottom.

By late afternoon, 88 individuals were in custody and more were sought in what Bharara described as the biggest gang takedown ever in New York City. The arrests stemmed from charges brought against 120 gang members.
Story here.

Texas is Gorgeous!

Springtime in Texas is truly something else. We got into San Anglo late Tuesday night, rested up Wednesday and then drove to San Antonio on Thursday. We got there in the midst of their annual fiesta celebrating another celebration called the Battle of the Flowers. It's a gigantic parade with vendors, thousands and thousands of people everywhere, bands, restaurants and of course the Alamo. And the food. Good grief.

The San Antonio River Walk is extraordinary. Our favorite restaurant is a place called Boudro's. On Thursday I had their Shrimp and Grits which was outstanding... and the best bread pudding evah. I had steak the next night.

Boudro's is on the right bank of the canal.

We went to a dueling piano bar called Howl at the Moon that night. The pianists put on quite a show. The next day was more shopping and gawking. My pins aren't the best since my knees gave out and even with the replacements, to walk as much as I did those two days was quite a chore.

We left San Antonio on Saturday and stopped at Fredericksburg on the way back to San Angelo. The girls went shopping while my son-in-law Wayne, my daughter's boyfriend, Rick, and I went to the Pacific War Museum. Adm. Nimitz is from Fredericksburg and there are three museums that cover his life and WWII.  We just saw the Pacific War Museum but it was extremely interesting.

We also stopped at the Wildseed Farms and saw acres and acres of red poppies and bought some flower seeds. Now if the deer will only let them grow.


Red poppies almost as far as the eye could see. It went on for several hundred yards beyond the camera range. They had all sorts of beautiful garden plants.

We went to church on Sunday morning and afterwards, off we went to the gun range. It's Texas, doncha know.


Danielle bought her Sig Sauer and her Glock. Her boyfriend, Rick, is also an E6 and a big Sig Sauer guy, he had five of them. I shot them all. It was like 9mm heaven. Okay, he also had a Sig .45 1911 which I adored (got me thinking about another pistol acquisition!).  Another Sgt. from their unit met us at the range and brought his collection of firearms with him.Throw in a shotgun, an AR15, a WWII M1 Garand (made in 1944), a 22 cal. MP5 and another 22 cal. single action cowboy revolver and my day was complete.

 Rick made his own steel plate targets; goes "ping" when ya hit 'em and the 6" plate dances.

Unfortunately I started a head cold Monday night and by Tuesday night it was in full bloom. We left Wednesday morning at 0436 and the day was a blur. Little sleep for almost a week and the cold meds kept me groggy. Then three flights to get home fraught with delays because of bad weather. We got home at 1800 and I dropped onto the couch at 1830; woke up at 2130. Back to bed at 2330. Felt better this morning.

It was a truly great vacation. The weather was great, mid to upper 80's every day and it only rained at night. Hardly a cloud in the sky. Just beautiful. We got back to dreary Syracuse - clouds and low 50's. Had to put my sweats back on this morning after a week of shorts and t-shirts.

As I mentioned in the previous post, Danielle is leaving the Army next January and is trying to join a National Guard unit in Kentucky. Rick is also pondering whether or not he will stay. They are both Arab linguists, their MOS is no longer in demand (actually overstaffed in the Army's estimation) and positions are being cut. From what they are going through, it appears that the Army is trying to get rid of them. Both Danielle and Rick have 8 years of service with two deployments to Afghanistan apiece. Rick has a Purple Heart. These are the people you'd think the Army wants to keep.

April 19, 2016

Going To Texas

The wife and I as well as one of our daughters and her husband are flying to San Angelo, TX, this afternoon - going to see our Army brat. It's almost a family reunion. We hear Texas is beautiful this time of year and finally we'll see for ourselves. We'll also spend a few nights in San Antonio. My bride is all excited... I just don't enjoy the hassle of flying; I would rather drive to Texas.

After eight and a half years she has decided to leave the Army and will be done next January.She was considering a career but her MOS apparently is no longer critical (Arab translator) and no one in her field is receiving promotions. She likes being a SIGINT instructor at Goodfellow but the Army won't keep her there like they said they would when she got the job. Instead they were going to send her on some crap assignment to Florida - she declined and now she is not allowed to re-enlist for a year. She's looking for a reserve or NG unit to join instead. In any event, she won't be returning to NYS and I don't blame her.

We'll return home late next week so I don't think I'll be posting much, if at all, for a while.
Keep the faith my friends.

And on a closing note; does anyone feel that this Republican scrum is nothing but a tactic to discourage conservative voter turnout for the November elections? Heil Hillary.

April 18, 2016

Take A Break

I am getting so tired of the politics and the back and forth rocking the interwet tubes.
Time for Mambo No. 5.


April 17, 2016

Are The Saudi's Bluffing?

An article in the American Thinker posits that the leverage that Saudi Arabia is trying to use isn't quite what it appears to be.
The role of Saudis in the 9/11 attack on the U.S. has hardly been completely hidden: 15 of the 19 hijackers were Saudis, trained in Wahhabi schools. More than that, there is evidence that Saudi officials in the U.S. aided and abetted them once they were here -- people like Omar al-Bayoumi, who met with some of the hijackers on the very same day he met with someone (as yet not publicly identified) in the Saudi consulate in Los Angeles.
The Saudis are allegedly implicated in the 2001 WTC outrage in 28 pages of redacted material contained in the 2003 Congressional report that some senators have tried to make public; there is also a Senate bill that would annul a 1976 law and allow the families of 9/11 victims to sue the Saudis.
While these damning 28 pages were redacted, they are accessible to Congress members, and persons who have served on the committee itself have revealed in general terms their content. Senator Bob Graham, who co-chaired the Committee, indicates the report, “outlines a network of people that supported the hijackers while they were on the West Coast and helped them to enroll in flight school.”
Important persons *cough* Saudis *cough* associated in that "network of people" fled the US after 9/11. None of them were interviewed by federal law enforcement officials. Perhaps they were only worried about a few outstanding parking tickets, eh?

In any event, the Saudis have threatened to sell off three quarters of a trillion dollars of US assets if this bill is passed. This will prevent those assets from being frozen or seized by those families suing the sand princes.
WASHINGTON — Saudi Arabia has told the Obama administration and members of Congress that it will sell off hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth of American assets held by the kingdom if Congress passes a bill that would allow the Saudi government to be held responsible in American courts for any role in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

The Obama administration has lobbied Congress to block the bill’s passage, according to administration officials and congressional aides from both parties, and the Saudi threats have been the subject of intense discussions in recent weeks between lawmakers and officials from the State Department and the Pentagon. The officials have warned senators of diplomatic and economic fallout from the legislation.
Just my ramblings, I am not sure what kind of economic impact the Saudis could wield with the sale of those assets but after Obama gets through with our economy the Saudis will be lucky to get 15 cents on the dollar.
The Senate bill is intended to make clear that the immunity given to foreign nations under the law should not apply in cases where nations are found culpable for terrorist attacks that kill Americans on United States soil. If the bill were to pass both houses of Congress and be signed by the president, it could clear a path for the role of the Saudi government to be examined in the Sept. 11 lawsuits.

April 16, 2016

Former Federal Cops Tell FBI: Be Careful

There is a great deal at stake for the FBI in their investigation of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. It's not just their reputation; their recruiting of top notch people, cooperation with other law enforcement agencies throughout the world - all is at risk if they are perceived to be nothing but a political hack that excuses the worst abusers of power at the highest level of government.
Former FBI agents who worked the notorious 1970s sting operation known as ABSCAM have written FBI Director James Comey to warn that nothing less than the bureau's "reputation" is on the line as the investigtaion into Hillary Clinton's email practices enters a critical phase.
The agents, in a March 16 letter obtained by Fox News, offered their support for Comey and the agents working the email case. But the letter cautioned the outcome would have long-lasting implications.
"Decisions must be made on facts alone. Much is at stake here -- people's trust in the Bureau for years to come, as well as the Bureau's reputation among our allies, partners, and friends as the greatest law enforcement agency in the world,” wrote John F. Good, president of the Long Island Chapter of the Society of Former Special Agents of the FBI.
The US Dept. of Justice will also be tainted if this goes down as I fear it wil. Their prosecutions, their potential witnesses, their jury selection pool - a lot can be affected by the public's distrust of the federal criminal justice system.

Story here.

April 15, 2016

We Can Do This Again Mayor de Blasio

I love this picture! Lee Alexander in cuffs being escorted by FBI agent Phil Looney, March 1989, in a continuing federal grand jury investigation of political corruption in Syracuse.

I remember back in July of 1987 when the feds indicted ex-Syracuse Mayor Lee Alexander for bribery (actually 40 counts of extortion, income tax evasion, racketeering and conspiracy). It was a slow process up to that point but when it broke, it went fast. We had been angling for an investigation of this thieving slob for years and when it finally happened, we were ecstatic. Alexander spent nearly six years in a federal prison.

July 2013, Mayoral hopeful de Blasio arrested for protesting hospital closures

Now almost thirty years later, I imagine that NYPD cops are feeling the same way; there is a growing recognition, a tingly anticipation that Mayor de Blasio will eventually get fitted for bracelets and an orange jumpsuit. Again.

From the Post:
Well, that didn’t take long: Mayor de Blasio has now lawyered up in the ever-widening federal corruption probe by US Attorney Preet Bharara.

To be sure, attorney Barry Berke officially represents the mayor’s 2013 election campaign, and he was officially asked only to reach out to Bharara’s office and offer to help “in any way that we can.”

But it’s another sign that things may be getting increasingly uncomfortable for the folks at City Hall.

And that de Blasio is facing what every public official involved in such investigations dreads: the constant drip-drip-drip of slowly leaking disclosures.

This as the mayor was forced to amend his earlier attempt to downplay his ties to Juda Rechnitz and Jeremy Reichberg, the two civilians reportedly at the heart of a probe that also includes possible high-level NYPD corruption.


April 14, 2016

Terrorist Executed In Somalia

Take a look at this mook.


No wonder they slapped a bag over his head before they shot him.


Probably to keep the firing squad from giggling. 

It was a close call, either a firing squad or the Bungee Cords O'Death

Story here.

April 13, 2016

White House Pussy: We Continue To Be Concerned.



Russian Su-24 planes thundered over the USS Donald Cook at a height of just 30ft in what a military official branded the most 'aggressive' incident between Russia and the United States in years.

The 'simulated attack' maneuver saw the jets pass so close to the ocean that they created a 'wake in the water', the defense official said.

The shock move came as a Polish helicopter was taking off from the US Destroyer on Tuesday evening.
This is not the first time the USS Donald Cook was was buzzed by Rooskie aircraft.

Somebody oughta swat those flies.

Story



April 12, 2016

Maryland Pays The Price For Political Correctness

 Beretta's beautiful brand new facility

Beretta is opening a new manufacturing facility in Tennessee after abandoning its American base of operations in Maryland.
Gun maker Beretta USA is opening a new factory on Friday, the culmination of generous land and tax offers in Tennessee and restrictive gun laws at its old Maryland location.

Beretta USA is holding a ribbon cutting ceremony at the recently built facility in Gallatin, Tennessee, on April 15, having moved all manufacturing from Maryland.

The new factory is 160,000 square feet, compared to 115,000 square feet if left behind, said Gabriele de Plano, vice president of defense marketing and operations for Beretta USA.

"We've got plenty of space to expand as well," he said.

He said the new factory is on a 100 acre plot that will feature an outdoor shooting range, unlike the old factory, which had a range in the basement.

Beretta is an Italian gun maker that has been manufacturing guns in Maryland since the 1980s, when it started providing arms to the U.S. military, which required them to be American-made.
Story here.

April 11, 2016

Sometimes I Hate The Internet

I hate to get excited, or even hopeful, about news that promises cures for diseases that my friends have. MS is a terrible affliction that affects millions; but in a recent article there apparently is a possible treatment for this disease. This is based on the research by an Italian doctor whose wife was suffering from MS. I really wish this true.
An Italian doctor has been getting dramatic results with a new type of treatment for Multiple Sclerosis, or MS, which affects up to 2.5 million people worldwide. In an initial study, Dr. Paolo Zamboni took 65 patients with relapsing-remitting MS, performed a simple operation to unblock restricted bloodflow out of the brain – and two years after the surgery, 73% of the patients had no symptoms. Dr. Zamboni’s thinking could turn the current understanding of MS on its head, and offer many sufferers a complete cure.

Multiple sclerosis, or MS, has long been regarded as a life sentence of debilitating nerve degeneration. More common in females, the disease affects an estimated 2.5 million people around the world, causing physical and mental disabilities that can gradually destroy a patient’s quality of life.

It’s generally accepted that there’s no cure for MS, only treatments that mitigate the symptoms – but a new way of looking at the disease has opened the door to a simple treatment that is causing radical improvements in a small sample of sufferers.

Italian Dr. Paolo Zamboni has put forward the idea that many types of MS are actually caused by a blockage of the pathways that remove excess iron from the brain – and by simply clearing out a couple of major veins to reopen the blood flow, the root cause of the disease can be eliminated.
And here's the reason why I hate to get optimistic about findings promising a simple miracle cure. A 2013 Canadian medical study disproved Zamboni's thesis. Really; with a name like Zamboni ya gotta figure something is screwy.
The study was solid and well-balanced, Dr. Paul Friedemann of the neurology department at Charité University in Berlin and Dr. Mike Wattjes of MS Center Amsterdam said in a journal commentary accompanying the research.

The study "sounds a death knell" for the disease hypothesis of CCSVI, the pair said. It is "now absolutely clear that no reason exists to allocate any further resources to chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency research, be they financial or intellectual."

The Lancet study, which cost about $450,000, was funded by the MS Society of Canada, Saskatoon City Hospital Foundation, Lotte and John Hecht Memorial Foundation, Vancouver Coastal Health Foundation and Woldridge Foundation.

Meanwhile, even though this study has disproved the theory, Traboulsee will continue to conduct a blinded, randomized control trial of the treatment on 100 people in Vancouver, Winnipeg, Montreal and Quebec City.

April 9, 2016

Water Grab

There is no doubt about this one; it is a UN political move solely calculated on how much they can steal or extort from Western nations.

With well-armed troops on the ground the UN couldn't do a thing to protect more than 500,000 Tutsi's from being slaughtered in 1994, but they'll go to the mat for a sardine.
The United Nations has launched a far-reaching initiative that could give U.N.-sponsored authorities sway over the biological resources of the high seas—all the waters that lie outside national territories and economic zones.
Here's the kicker. There's more money at stake here than you can shake a Tutsi at, if you can find one.

This comes on the heels of 11 million documents that were leaked from a Panama law office showing how the world's leaders hide their fortunes that they stole from their constituents. When it comes to murder and larceny, there are no bigger criminals than those who control their governments.
The potential shift in power involves multi-trillion-dollar issues, such as whether large areas—conceivably, as much as 30 percent-- of the world’s international waters should be designated as no-go areas to protect biological diversity; whether and how to require elaborate “environmental impact assessments” for future ocean development projects; and how to divide up the economic benefits from the future development of “marine genetic resources.”

Eden Charles, a diplomat from Trinidad and Tobago who is serving as the chairman for a U.N. preparatory committee that began the discussions this week underlined to Fox News that the talks are at a “very, very preliminary stage.”
Yeah, I'm gonna let some asshole from Tobago determine how much I pay for a can of tuna.

This is all environmental/social justice bullshit. You can read more here from a speech he delivered to the UN in 2014. It's not only about sustainable development, it's also about delivering technology and industrial capacity to under developed nations; you know, those countries where if their leaders don't sell a competing tribe into slavery, they eat them.
Overall, the hoped-for treaty will cover “two-thirds of the oceans, almost half the planet,” says Lisa Speer, a senior official of the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), which is in turn a lead member of a squadron of 33 environmentalist groups banded together as the High Seas Alliance to lobby for protectionist measures during the talks.
And there you go. Thirty-three groups of self-styled saviors who don't bathe in order to save the planet will dictate policy governing much of the planet's surface.

April 8, 2016

Finish Her

I don't care if it's nails in her coffin or nails in the cross as long as they're nails that finish her.

From Fox News.
The extradition of Romanian hacker “Guccifer” to the U.S. at a critical point in the FBI’s criminal investigation of Hillary Clinton’s email use is “not a coincidence,” according to an intelligence source close to the case.

One of the notches on Guccifer’s cyber-crime belt was allegedly accessing the email account of Clinton confidant Sidney Blumenthal, one of Clinton’s most prolific advice-givers when she was secretary of state. It was through that hack that Clinton's use of a personal account -- clintonemail.com -- first came to light.

Former law enforcement and cyber security experts said the hacker, whose real name is Marcel Lehel Lazar, could – now that he’s in the U.S. – help the FBI make the case that Clinton’s email server was compromised by a third party, one that did not have the formal backing and resources of a foreign intelligence service such as that of Russia, China or Iran.

“Because of the proximity to Sidney Blumenthal and the activity involving Hillary’s emails, [the timing] seems to be something beyond curious,” said Ron Hosko, former assistant director of the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division from 2012-2014
If I were a carpenter
And she were a lady
I'd be pounding those nails in hard
And I don't mean maybe
~Bob "The Hammer" Dylan
[...]The Romanian government told Fox News that the request to extradite Lazar came from the FBI, but when Fox News asked when the process began, a government spokesperson said they were not authorized to comment further.

Romanian media have reported the request came on or about Dec. 29, 2015. That would have been shortly after the intelligence community’s identification of emails beyond “top secret” on Clinton’s personal server, which became public in mid-January.

Clinton’s deliberate choice to use a private, unsecure server based in her home and a private email address for her government business as secretary of state remains under federal investigation by the FBI while she campaigns for president. It has been widely reported in the last month that the FBI is setting up interviews with Clinton and her associates, what is believed to be a final phase in the process.
Hillary delenda est

It Rots From The Head

New York City Mayor William de Blasio has succeeded; he has reached the pinnacle of Democratic political success by attracting a major federal corruption investigation. He can now say he is as important as Hillary Clinton.
With subpoenas issued, investigations spreading and at least one federal grand jury at work, the question isn’t whether Bill de Blasio’s administration has a corruption problem. The questions are how big is the problem, how many agencies are tainted and how high up the pecking order does it go?

The preliminary answers are worrisome. A small army of investigators, including the FBI, is on the hunt, and all roads appear to lead straight to Mayor Putz.

The two biggest and most recent scandals involve lucrative gifts and cash given to current and former top officers in the NYPD, and the removal of a deed restriction and sale of a city-owned Manhattan building that netted private investors a cool $72 million profit.

[...] As the incidents multiply, with the mayor’s city and state Democratic allies joining the probes, we are long past the suggestion threshold. A little more than two years into de Blasio’s term, an integrity reckoning is overdue.
Wow, only two years as Mayor and already he stinks like a dead fish.

Story here.