Random Thoughts On A Wednesday

There are some longer works I hope to get done and posted this week, will see how it goes. Meantime, just some random bits that have caught my attention that you may find interesting or amusing.

I noticed earlier that some people are finally noticing that Soros has bought heavily into American radio. Yes, it is quite concerning. I’m wondering if it might also be tied into the push to do away with AM being included on the radios in new cars. Yes, that is a thing, it’s a serious discussion, and it would be a disaster for AM stations. Which is where you find most conservative talk radio. Which is likely the real reason behind the effort to do away with AM in car radios. Me, once I get some new wheels, I not only want a radio that can get AM, but short wave as well even though our local talk/news station is FM. Be subversive in all things, and in all ways great and small.

Going back to the Tucker/Putin interview, I think I touched on the fact that Vladimir’s take on history was about as realistic as the “Improbable History” segments on “Rocky and Bullwinkle.” Where is Prof. Peabody when you need him??? BTW, at conventions, be sure to ask Sarah A. Hoyt to say “moose and squirrel.” Anywho, here’s a decent take on Prof. Vladimir’s Fractured Fairy Tales, er history. As noted, it’s just a start, but it’s a good start.

It’s going to be interesting to watch what happens in New York over the next few years. Already intent on driving out major contributors to it’s tax base in the name of woke politics (Remington Arms being but one example), you have the triumph of Soviet jurisprudence that is the work of Judge Engoron. New York abandoned the rule of law a while back, and these days loves to viciously prosecute those who dare defend themselves and others while rewarding those who harm others, so no surprise that the AG, Judge, and others put on the show trial of the century (so far at least) after announcing the verdict ahead of time. Now, they and the other politicians are shocked that after announcing that such would only be done to the evil (cough) Trump that big money (and small) is voting with their feet. L’Ombre de l’Olivier (allow me to add it to my recommended regular reads) has a good post on this, and I think the tide is going to rise a lot faster than New York realizes.

The same applies for Delaware, which decided to join the war against Elon. The number of companies switching their incorporation to other states may fast be approaching a flood. It’s much quieter than the head-shot body of New York real estate dropping to the floor with a splat, but it’s there and is somewhat amusing to watch. The bet isn’t if, but when Delaware and New York start screaming for a Federal bailout because of their actions.

While I’m thinking about it, a couple of quick thoughts about Elon, his companies, and the war on him. Make no mistake, it is a war and it is being waged by the Biden Regency. Rather, they are being allowed to head up that war on the U.S. side. Understand, X is only free speech in comparison to the competition. It still bans a lot of speech under the banner of being nice and encouraging nice-speak. I frankly don’t care if the boot on the throat is the black jackboot of fascism or the white boot of the pretend angel of niceness — it’s still a fucking boot on the throat. However, by allowing any speech not endorsed by our would-be masters (looking not just at DC but also towards Europe and that smug little bitch TM) earned Elon the ire if not outright hatred of said wanna-be masters.

Which is deliciously ironic given that Tesla is for all intents and purposes the EV producer in the U.S./world, and that without Space X we have almost zero access to orbit. Blue Origins talks a lot, but still hasn’t made orbit — which might make me take some of the talk seriously. Everyone else is still playing catch up. I agree with Elon: we need to become a spacefaring race, and fast. Earth is the cradle of humanity, and we need to leave the cradle ASAP as crib death is still a thing. Elon is the best option for that happening at this time. For all that I agree with Glenn Reynolds on this, I worry about the future and what happens if Elon is taken out of the equation.

I was working on a short bit of fiction, but Iran just may have ended it. Their recent missile test used a standard CONEX to launch a missile. My story also did the same. Well, it was an exploration of a first-strike scenario using six to ten container ships to launch a rather devastating first strike against the U.S. Almost all of our sensors are focused out of CONUS, but not so much on close-in. Just think about one large container ship and the dozens of CONEX just on the top layer. Forget ballistic, go with hypersonic cruise missiles, say from a container ship headed into the Port of Baltimore. If very lucky, you would have up to five minutes warning in DC. Most likely less than that. With the six to ten ships, it could be possible to take out about ninety percent of the first and second strike targets. Don’t worry, I still maintain that Vladimir will not nuke DC as he wants to hurt us, not help us.

Speaking of space, I’ve been considerably amused at the frantic activity in DC around the “leak” of the so-called major security concern/threat. Boy howdy did that blow up in some very embarrassed faces. I still need to do a post on the subject and the Outer Space Treaty, it’s one of those longer pieces that I hope to get done later this week.

Meantime, I am working to re-arrange and clean my room. This has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that the priest is coming to bless the house and the room I rent. I will say that organizing and major cleaning have not been on the table since the first shoulder replacement last June, and it shows. My OCD has been having conniption fits for a while now, and of course one bit of (re) organizing always leads into other things… BTW, the priest is young and never been around the military, so I think my telling him that he was not allowed to try to bounce a quarter on the bed went right over his head… I use fitted sheets anyway.

UPDATE: Just remembered what it was I was going to post. Sarah posted this about some good people in need. Sadly, Synova’s husband has passed, but help is still needed. I also just read that Steve Miller, Sharon Lee’s husband and co-author has passed. Prayers are urgently needed for all.

Getting hit by lightning is not fun! If you would like to help me in my recovery efforts, which include moving once we have medical issues cleared up, feel free to hit the fundraiser at A New Life on GiveSendGo, use the options in the Tip Jar in the upper right, or drop me a line to discuss other methods. It is thanks to your gifts and prayers that I am still going. Thank you.

The Death of Navalny

I’m honestly surprised it took this long. My bet was sooner during a change of prison. If you believe that he was taking a walk and just collapsed out of the blue, I’ve got some investment opportunities I’d love to discuss with you.

Officially, Russia does not have the death penalty. The days of a relatively clean bullet to the back of the head (see The Death of Nina in The Americans as that is accurate about how it was done) are gone. From what I hear today usually involves paid goons (prisoner or guards), and beatings that may include truncheons, pipes, etc. Somehow I doubt his family will get the body back, as an unmarked prison grave still works best for the people in charge.

I talked about Navalny and other opposition figures in this post. For all that he was not the pro-Western figure beloved of the Western left, he was in many ways the last major opposition to Vladimir and the current leadership. I also have to give him significant props for courage for going back, even knowing he would likely be killed for so doing.

I’m wondering if among other motives, the death of Navalny may possibly also be very cynical opportunism. Vladimir is going to (rightly in the ways that count) take the blame for his murder. Given some of the jockeying and in-fighting that is underway behind the scenes, however, I have to wonder if this was not done by one of the other factions. It puts Vladimir and the current leadership in a bad light internally (which is really what counts) and internationally (which really doesn’t count for much, but…) while they can quietly take credit for bold, decisive action. Given the recent window issues experienced by some current (or possibly former) Vladimir supporters, the game appears to be afoot.

That said, I also have to admit it could just be Vladimir on a schedule that makes sense from an internal Russian perspective, a la the death of Pringles. Or, it could be Vladimir saddling some up and coming competition with the act even as he takes the public blame. What can I say? It is so much fun trying to figure out what is going on not behind an Iron Curtain; but, rather behind the frosted-glass kaleidoscope in place to keep the public from truly seeing behind the scenes.

I have said a prayer for his soul, and note for the record that the fact that I don’t think he was the figure portrayed by Western liberals means in any way that he deserved to be murdered. He did not. Do I hope justice catches up to all involved/responsible at all levels? Yes. Beyond that, there’s not a lot to say. The pundits will roar and lionize, the opposition will demonize, and not much will change. Sorry, a bit cynical this morning and wondering if by the election we will have much room to talk.

Getting hit by lightning is not fun! If you would like to help me in my recovery efforts, which include moving once we have medical issues cleared up, feel free to hit the fundraiser at A New Life on GiveSendGo, use the options in the Tip Jar in the upper right, or drop me a line to discuss other methods. It is thanks to your gifts and prayers that I am still going. Thank you.

Some Memories Of Russia

I’m not really sure what Tucker is up to, but his recent takes on Moscow and Russia in comparison to the U.S. have an odd ring to them. To be charitable.

Almost all my time in Russia was either in St. Petersburg or Moscow. I really wish time and circumstances had allowed me to see more. If it were possible to go back (it’s not), part of me would love to start in St. Petersburg and take the train all the way across the country. Stop and explore along the way, take lots of photos, and get to meet more of the people. On these photos, click to embiggen if you like.

My quick takes are perhaps dated, but here they go. I really enjoyed and liked St. Petersburg. In a perfect world, I could spend months there going through the museums and archives. I felt relatively safe there walking around, and it was comforting to know I had several ways out of Russia from there in an emergency. Had several offers to come back without a date, as they had a nice girl for me to meet and marry (grin, several people did not think much of my companion), and/or to come back in winter and take a sleigh ride.

Moscow did not feel as safe, particularly at night. I only really went out once at night, and it came close to ending in a less-than-positive manner. I will note that in St. Petersburg the word seemed to be out not to harm the tourists (like when the Mob ran Vegas). That was missing in Moscow.

And, yes, the stores and even some food courts were amazing. Of course, part of it was that even the Soviets realized the new buildings were crap and that it was much better to upgrade the old buildings that were well built.

It was a bit jarring, however, to eat at a fast food place shoehorned into the splendor, and that the native Russian with me assured me was the best Italian in Moscow. Cough.

I really thought I had a photo of one of Stalin’s show subway stations, but can’t find it. Pity, as it really was quite a show. If I remember correctly, there were several done in different styles (Deco, Nouveau, etc.) to show the class, grace, and modernity of the great Soviet state. Cough. Tourists were not generally allowed to travel to or through any other stations for some odd reason. Cough. Still lots of rumors (here and there) that Stalin had tunnels put under the Kremlin, both as an escape to distant airfields and to create bomb shelters.

Shakedowns, often by militia, police, etc., were the official big thing at the time. It was the way they had actually gotten additional money back in Soviet days, and was (I was told) how they got paid at the time of my visit. Apparently paychecks got held up a good bit, and I was treated to some amazing music as members (most?) of the Moscow Symphony were having to beg for money in the subway near the Kremlin as they hadn’t been paid in months.

The difference, at that time, was that if you were a tourist, the shakedowns in St. Petersburg tended not to get too physical (or so I was told), whereas Moscow you could easily end up in the hospital or worse. I got lucky in Moscow when accosted one night, talked fast, and engaged in an expedient change of location that got me clear. I did not run (that is not a good idea in such a situation) but I did move in a determined manner. I’m also glad they didn’t understand English as I may have muttered a few things under my breath while trying to talk my way out.

I will also admit that in St. Petersburg I had hired a driver and translator. To be honest, I chose that pair because they had worked with (but not for) the GRU and KGB during the Soviet era. Longer story there, but we did not have any problems or shakedowns during the time there. I used similar to get to and from the airport in Moscow, as kidnappings for ransom on that road were an issue at the time.

So, yes, there are places in Moscow and elsewhere that are absolutely gorgeous. There are places where, especially as a tourist (and most likely under open and covert watchful eyes), you are going to be safe. But, there are also no-go zones and other delights to go with the remains of Stalin’s show pieces. You might also want to look at average income, STD (and esp. HIV) rates, medical, and a few other critical things.

Glad I visited, not really interested in living there. If Tucker or anyone else is, all the best to them. They are going to need it.

Getting hit by lightning is not fun! If you would like to help me in my recovery efforts, which include moving once we have medical issues cleared up, feel free to hit the fundraiser at A New Life on GiveSendGo, use the options in the Tip Jar in the upper right, or drop me a line to discuss other methods. It is thanks to your gifts and prayers that I am still going. Thank you.

About That Intel Issue

That is so serious it is requiring multiple meetings, lots of SCIF briefings, and is apparently being leaked madly in the name of saving the Republic (cough, choke, wheeze). Oh, and is also being linked to crucial, crucial I say funding for Ukraine and is so important no money can be wasted on our borders… Sigh.

For now, color me skeptical, unimpressed, and needing jusssssst a touch more info (/end Harry Doyle/Bob Uecker voice) to be convinced. Right now, the bookmakers are putting good odds on it being the Russians, in the library with a candlestick, er, in space with nukes.

Okay, I’ll bite. One, nukes are about the only credible threat Russia has right now, and even it is a bit wobbly in my opinion. I still subscribe to my ‘tyranny of the 20 percent’ concept in which I think they (or us) will be lucky to get 20 percent of the weapons and/or weapons systems to work. Just look at how well Nikita’s, er, Vladimir’s demo launch worked during Biden’s visit to Ukraine.

For as much as I am NOT a fan of the 1967 Outer Space Treaty, and would like to see us either re-negotiate the majority in light of commercial operations or withdraw from them, there are some interesting and needed weapons provisions that I think are good things even though I’m also more than a little suspicious that China (1983 signatory I think) is well on its way to scrapping some key lunar and orbital points. For that matter, I’m pretty sure Russia has already violated it a time or two (but that’s true for pretty much every treaty they have signed).

Until there is more information, there’s not a lot that can be said — which is not going to stop the grifters and pundits from putting forth thousands of empty words. I’m going to wait and see what comes out other than leaks, then offer some analysis and thoughts. Until then, just consider my cynicism as a given.

Getting hit by lightning is not fun! If you would like to help me in my recovery efforts, which include moving once we have medical issues cleared up, feel free to hit the fundraiser at A New Life on GiveSendGo, use the options in the Tip Jar in the upper right, or drop me a line to discuss other methods. It is thanks to your gifts and prayers that I am still going. Thank you.

Midweek Update

Lots going on in the world still, but still far from one hundred percent. Started feeling bad Saturday, felt like dreck on Sunday, and still haven’t bounced back. Feeling a bit better, but not even close to where I would like to be. The news of the world isn’t helping. Thank goodness for blood pressure meds…

First, say the names Sgt. William Jerome Rivers (Carrolton, GA), Spc. Kennedy Ladon Sanders (Waycross, GA), and Spc. Breonna Alexsondria Moffett (Savannah, GA). I wish I had the names of all the wounded who came before them, or were wounded with them, but I don’t. If those attacks had been responded to professionally and decisively at the time, these troops would not be dead and the Red Sea would not be the mess it is.

If you really want your blood pressure to go up, check out the reports that the families had to fill out paperwork to get a call from Biden. I’m hearing that it is correct, that the Regency wanted paperwork done (and asses covered) before the call was made. If you want to know how the Biden Regency (and the Biden family for anyone but Beau) views those who serve… Wonder how many times he brought up Beau with these families? Word is the demented meat puppet will be at Dover, and I wonder how many times the POS will check his watch this time.

Fox News?

As for retaliation, I’m not optimistic on anything useful being done. Hearing a lot of what went on with the Houthi situation: give warnings, time to evacuate people and supplies, etc. Then again, ten percent of whatever cut is being gotten from the six billion is a lot of money. We really need to not do the “nice” thing this time, and a certain Iranian intelligence and control ship needs to be on the bottom of the Red Sea. Lot’s of countries who are PO’d about the Red Sea situation have subs, just sayin’… Though I would bet on it being less than 24-hours before someone in the Regency blabbed.

I wish I was up to more. Iran is pushing, North Korea appears to be preparing, and lots of other things are happening on top of that. Good news here is that some low blood ox levels appear to be more low battery level than anything else. When it comes to medical, get as much redundancy in your system as you can. Particularly in monitoring and related gear. I’m working on getting an appointment with a new cardiologist, but part of that depends on others, so we will see. I will find a way to make it happen.

Other than some cooking this weekend, only “fun” thing I’ve done is play with culturing a sourdough starter. Will share more soon, even if it goes completely south, as it has been fun and I had some amazing biscuits this morning made with the “discard” from the feedings. If it works, well, I’m going to eat well even in an emergency I think.

Working on a food preparedness idea that I may share even before I have things fully worked out. Essentially one case of canning jars and a few other items gives several people enough to last 2-4 weeks (and have a long-term reserve of certain essentials). Can augment or boost short rations for a longer time. Also, lots of options for ensuring some “fun” things as well.

So far, glad to see things not getting out of hand in Texas. FYI, Texas is not defying the Supreme Court. The ruling simply lifted an injunction, and did not prevent Texas from taking actions. The Feds can take actions, and Texas can string more wire and take other actions as well as the case winds through the courts. The only thing that concerns me right now is that the Biden Regency has a knack for picking the stupidist option in any situation, and running with it. So far, that seems to be the LNG action, but if there is a way to stick the pistol in their pants and AD, the Biden Regency will find it.

BUCEEEEEEEES!

BTW, if anyone knows how to get the Buc-ee’s combat patch, do let me know as I WANT ONE! That’s just too good and mocks so mercilessly….

More soon I hope.

Getting hit by lightning is not fun! If you would like to help me in my recovery efforts, which include moving once we have medical issues cleared up, feel free to hit the fundraiser at A New Life on GiveSendGo, use the options in the Tip Jar in the upper right, or drop me a line to discuss other methods. It is thanks to your gifts and prayers that I am still going. Thank you.

Russia Wants Alaska Back?

Saw this good post by Leslie Eastman over at Legal Insurrection. Has Vladimir been making noises about re-acquiring various former territories that were sold, lost, or otherwise no longer Russian? Yes. He has.

Most of the noise is aimed at an internal audience, as with most of the talk on Ukraine, use of nukes, etc. It does, however, establish claim (as the Russians see it) for eventually going after all former territories. I keep telling people that they need to pay attention to Russkiy Mir (much as Cdr. Salamander keeps tapping his sign that NATO has an Eastern front, not a flank) as it does indeed call for re-acquiring former lands (including Alaska).

Thing is, it is not happening anytime soon. Again, that was for an internal audience and not focused on any outside audience. Though, to be honest, if the Biden Regency were to respond in any way that they see as providing a good precedent or possible concession, Vladimir is not going to object. And, yes, I do suspect the Regency is stupid enough to do such, even if they don’t realize they are doing it.

As for trading California for clear title to Alaska, well, I don’t think Vladimir is that stupid though we could hope…

Meantime, go enjoy a good post but remember that the whole concept of Russkiy Mir is driving not only the invasion of Ukraine, but a lot of other stuff going on internal to Russia. Western politicians write off the document and the concept as bombast or posturing, but Vladimir and other Russian politicians do indeed see it as a guide who’s implementation will be their legacy.

Getting hit by lightning is not fun! If you would like to help me in my recovery efforts, which include moving once we have medical issues cleared up, feel free to hit the fundraiser at A New Life on GiveSendGo, use the options in the Tip Jar in the upper right, or drop me a line to discuss other methods. It is thanks to your gifts and prayers that I am still going. Thank you.

Quick Thoughts

Sorry to be lite with posting, but things are still more interesting than I care for. Personally and in terms of world events. Let’s start with the latter.

If you have missed seeing the video of the person illegally entering the country who told a reporter they were too stupid to know who they were, but to wait as soon all would know who he is, I’m not surprised. See here, here, and here for more and watch the full video and analysis. Corporate media is ignoring as hard as they can, so what little coverage of this and all the military-age muslim/middle-eastern men from places like Syria, Jordan, Afghanistan, etc. are getting is coming from new/alternative media. Which makes it a target for corporate media members and other influences to poo-poo you crazed conspiracy theorist you… Sigh. No matter how low an opinion you have of corporate media, it is not low enough. Also, can’t believe how many are claiming that the government has him under surveillance and won’t let anything happen — just like they’ve done with all those mass killing known wolves. Right. Keep your eyes open and be prepared, for this guy does plan to make himself known and unlike our government I suspect he’s competent. Which is sad as we will be the ones paying the bill.

Also in the news this morning is a report of a Russian Il-76 going down in Russian-controlled territory. The Russians are claiming it had POWs from Ukraine on board, while Ukraine says it had S-300 missiles. Some sources are saying Ukraine shot it down, but there is good reason to believe the Russians took it out by mistake (wouldn’t be the first time that’s happened). Keep an eye out as the tap dancing on this one is probably going to be impressive. Have to wonder if Ukraine hasn’t found an exploit given that there are still some persistent rumors that they tricked Russian air defense into shooting down their own AWACs plane… If I were Vladimir or other top leaders, I’d think twice before flying anywhere near the front right now. Oh, be sure to keep an eye on how Ukraine long-range attacks are forcing Russia to deploy/re-deploy AAD assets deeper and deeper into Russia.

Speaking of Russia, the politics continue. One of the more interesting things I’m noting is that people are no longer quite so cautious about attacking Kadyrov. A number of interesting people have begun not just talking in private, but in public (or encouraging others to do so) questioning how much if anything Kadyrov was doing to help win the war. This wasn’t helped by having a couple of his top people appear to consider shooting a Russian soldier who not only dared stop them at a checkpoint, but pointed out their paperwork was not in order. Kadyrov has not been tactful in his responses, which isn’t helping. Nor is it limited to those attacks. Recently a member of the Duma made some comments about muslims and islamic extremists, and predicted there could be clashes coming between Orthodox Christians and muslims. Kadyrov called for the member to be ousted and has blustered — and initial reports are it’s not going over well. We will see. For now, Vladimir is safe in power though April may be a different story.

Also, I’ve spoken highly of Kamil Galeev on here before, and I think his work on Russia, Russian history, politics, etc. is outstanding. His work on who in the West is providing advanced machine tools and more is very good and should be required reading for politicians and others involved with sanctions. That said, I’ve been made aware of some comments made by him in regards the Middle East and Israel and while disappointed (to be polite) it is a reminder than knowledge in one area often does not translate into other areas. If he goes into open antisemitism, I will be dropping him as a resource and can’t recommend his work outside of his specialty on Russia. Caveat Emptor.

The war by the White House on commercial space (and Elon in particular) continues. However, there is some good pushback and a reminder we need to push our congrescritters and others to prevent over-regulation and halt efforts by the White House to curtail commercial space. Hat tip to Instapundit for that one. Remember, as long as we are in the cradle of humanity, crib death is a possibility. We need to be out and exploring, for that is the only way to start to guarantee a real future for humanity.

I will add that if I could go up in space, I would. I would love being a part of the SpaceX human spaceflight program, though I fear at this point all I might contribute is ‘He survived launch.’ Wish protein crystallography out of UAB were still flying, as I think I remember how to operate their flight gear. I would seriously consider the moon or Mars, even if I knew it would be one way.

As for some of the personal stuff, my effort to get the heart diagnosis proven or disproved have hit a roadblock. I was under the impression that tomorrow’s scheduled meeting with the cardiologist was to answer the question. However, the doc got sick, and the person working to reschedule with another doc informed me that no it wasn’t, invasive tests were/are needed, and a bit more. Seems my visit was only scheduled for 20 minutes anyway, just long enough to make it a full-cost visit for insurance filing.

I am less than happy, to the point I’m considering looking for a new cardiologist, especially since this is not the first time I’ve been disappointed/less-than-impressed with her. I’m also having to do a bit of thinking since the mystery diagnosis (reminder, it showed up in another hospital’s online system but no one can tell me who made it, on what basis, etc.) is confirmed, there is no current treatment. Too bad, so sad.

Between that and some other stuff, been a little preoccupied. On a good news front, physical therapy is progressing as we can start doing more strength and related, which lets me actually do things with the extremely good range of motion. It also makes the sessions run a little long (at this point I’m mostly self-directed as I know what I’m to be doing and so start then get checked on every now and then. We tend to add in new stuff towards the end, and then next time I know to do it. It does make PT days a bit intense and tiring, however. So, that’s cut into the writing a bit.

May get more into some of the health stuff later, but for now just going to focus on getting done what I can while I can. I’m actually doing some things at the Church I’ve been attending, and enjoying them. We are not rushing my joining, though I very much appreciated the priest giving me a book to read for Christmas. Going to Church is dangerous to my wallet, as they have a bookstore there… 🙂 My Christmas treat to myself was a book on The Inklings that I’m hoping to start soon.

Hoping to get more writing done in the days ahead, though PT and health will have to come first. More soon.

Getting hit by lightning is not fun! If you would like to help me in my recovery efforts, which include moving once we have medical issues cleared up, feel free to hit the fundraiser at A New Life on GiveSendGo, use the options in the Tip Jar in the upper right, or drop me a line to discuss other methods. It is thanks to your gifts and prayers that I am still going. Thank you.

A Different Type Of Irrational Actor

In several of the posts in my category on nuclear use and/or war, I talk about the “actors” involved. No, not the Hollyweird types but the (so-called) leaders of various nuclear powers.

Back when such was primarily the U.S. and Soviet Union, the basic feeling was that both parties were rational actors. That is, they were of reasonably sound mind, had rational interests in protecting the lives and livelihoods of their respective countries, and were not bent on destroying the world. Even as the club grew, this remained the basic framework for evaluation and consideration of the actions of those people.

There was always at least some (lip) service given to the potential for madmen to get control of a weapon or even a missile or plane. Or, that some form of technological failure would set things off. The presumptions behind Fail Safe (book and movie) was about the former, while the satire Dr. Strangelove presented the latter. That said, both dealt with larger-scale events and both led to efforts to prevent or mitigate same. Twilight’s Last Gleaming looked at someone gaining control of a nuclear missile command post/silo. The ridiculous The Manhattan Project looked at a student building an atomic bomb. Dawn’s Early Light examined rogue Soviet agents firing a missile from Turkey to provoke an exchange.

As far as the public (and media of the day) were concerned, the real problems lay with rational actors and the chance for mistakes or other to lead to an exchange. The public sentiment seemed to be that rational actors would otherwise never consider a nuclear exchange. The chance of a madman/terrorist getting a bomb was not considered real in terms of public perceptions. For those actually involved with security and proliferation, it was a larger concern than was generally shared with the public. So, between the perceptions of the public outlined above via movies, and concerns for safety, as weapon design advanced so did the safety mechanisms. PIDs (which could be snap hooks or cheap padlocks) were replaced by PALs. At least for some weapons, which is why the loss of the Soviet arms depot just before the Soviet Union came apart was (and is) worrying to the pros. Odds of any such weapons still being viable, if they ever existed or were missing, is slim. That said, the materials and parts within them are potentially a different matter. If they were there, real, and missing that is.

So, what happens when a state with nuclear weapons is not a rational actor in accordance with the basic framework? What happens when it’s not one madman who gets in charge, but rather an entire government that has a very different take on the world and what is rational within it?

It’s a very interesting question, and one we may get to explore more than theoretically in the coming days. A certain degree of lip service, if that, has been given to the concept of a state that has a very different take on politics and religion, but the “experts” have tended to push that they would behave as rational actors. My thoughts on that have never been in full (or most other) agreement as the leaders of such a country would not think as we think, within a framework of thought crafted by Western civilization. Pretty much the “mores” argument on dealing with the Soviets/Russians, but with added mayhem.

So, in the last week we’ve had a country, that if it is not already a nuclear weapons power is extremely close to being such, attacking multiple countries not just by proxy but directly via ballistic missiles — including three that are believed to be nuclear powers. This on top of conducting “covert” operations on a wide scale, possibly into the Americas. A government hanging on in many ways by a thread with a population that is a powder keg looking for a spark. A government that is a theocracy that makes typical repression look tame. A government that advocates and works for their version of Armageddon as it will bring about the return of the hidden imam and the creation of a world-wide Islamic caliphate.

By no measure can Iran be considered a typical rational actor in terms of nuclear use/non-use scenarios. In fact, I consider them far more unstable than North Korea, and that’s saying something. Especially given a number of rather troubling developments with Kim and the North Korean government/military that don’t bode well for a peaceful 2024. That’s a nightmare that I will leave for others to explain. In regards Iran, you have a regime that has no regard for human life on any level. Such is a Western concept they reject completely and totally. They consider lives outside of themselves as even less than those they wantonly kill or maim to stay in power.

Aside from the U.S. and Israel, Iran has chosen to attack Pakistan, which is a nuclear power. Which has responded with attacks of its own that may be just the start of retaliation per various declarations. While some are saying they won’t really go at it as both are Islamic, the fact is they are two different “flavors” of Islam and they are not compatible. This has the potential to get very, very interesting on its own.

Now, let’s look at a known feature of Iranian activities: the use of proxies/catspaws. Something I’ve brought up from time to time is a concern that this would apply even to nuclear operations. To make it even more fun, I can think of several ways they could make such a use appear to be the result of others being careless, such as China or North Korea. There is growing evidence that both the latter have supplied weapons (and more) to Hamass, Hezbowlah, and the Houthi/Hootie. Or, despite their apparent closeness to Russia, suspect that they would be more than glad to set them up as well.

Given the reported involvement of China with Iran’s nuclear weapon and missile development, do you think it would be hard to get enough material to obfuscate the origins of a nuclear weapon? Or that others might share material (or help obtain such) to use for such a purpose from others? While analysis can often tell us where the nuclear materials in any device, dirty or otherwise, came from there has always been the possibility of spoofing that, or at least to providing enough to put the analysis into question. Remember that arms depot and that there is potentially a fair bit of nuclear materials available for use/reuse, from every major nuclear power. Just a thought to brighten your day.

Now, let’s kick things up a notch. Imagine if a nuclear weapon detonated within Yemen, or after being launched by the Houthi at a ship in the gap. On the former, I would expect to see Israel blamed and the large number of governments demand (or even execute) attacks on/destruction of Israel. The huge amount (and growing) of antisemitism is not an accident or otherwise unplanned. Even if it was clear the detonation came from a missile or drone launched from Yemen, expect a large and coordinated push to blame Israel. Now, to kick it up even further, consider what would happen if the Biden Regency, which is not terribly pro-Israel (and has a number of antisemites within it) has to react to American warships, or even a CBG, caught in such a blast.

Or, while less likely image if something were to happen in or near Venezuela where both China and Iran have been busy, busy, busy. Imagine it happened to a British ship or ships, or to the capital of the country they want to invade. Far fetched you say? Not as much as I would like.

Because it all comes back to Iran being a non-rational state actor. They are an Islamic theocracy driven by religious beliefs and more importantly goals. Their actions have to be analyzed and considered in that light. To continue, as some “experts” seem determined to do, to treat and analyze them as rational actors is ridiculous. Even absent nuclear intents, it is foolish in the extreme to consider them a rational actor and treat them accordingly.

That the Biden Regency/Obama II The Dementia Boogaloo will continue to do so, and work for them instead of against them, is a given. Once bought, they do tend to stay bought… Which is all the more likely to escalate the situation. It is also driving a wedge into a number of long-term and/or important alliances. This fracturing is very detrimental to the concepts of peace and stability, be it deliberate or otherwise. It also means anything done by another that might be effective will be resisted if not prevented by the Regency.

Meantime, Iran will continue it’s international game of chicken and work towards its own ends. While for many in the West the attacks on three nuclear powers makes no sense, it did and does make sense to the mad mullahs in Tehran. I strongly suspect we would be a lot better off if our experts would start trying to look at it from their viewpoint rather than continuing to try to shoehorn it into the rational actor box. They are not rational actors as we think of it, and failure to acknowledge that is going to have very bad results.

Getting hit by lightning is not fun! If you would like to help me in my recovery efforts, which include moving once we have medical issues cleared up, feel free to hit the fundraiser at A New Life on GiveSendGo, use the options in the Tip Jar in the upper right, or drop me a line to discuss other methods. It is thanks to your gifts and prayers that I am still going. Thank you.

Behind The Curtain

I’ve been pointing this out since around 10/8, but the point keeps getting lost in the flood of outrage porn and engagement manipulation for compensation on social media. Not as many may see it here, but it is an important point: pay attention to the creatures behind the curtain. Don’t count on Toto to pull it open to make it hard for most to ignore.

From the start, the so-called “pro-Palestinian” movement was amazingly well prepared. Pre-printed signs, banners, shirts, and more were somehow available on 10/8. The amount has only grown since. There are other logistics as well, most especially transportation. A different form of logistics is seen in the obsequious abasement of political and judicial/law enforcement to these protests even when they blockade or assault houses of worship (hallmark of the greater jihad, see Hagia Sophia, Dome of the Rock, and far too many other examples) and clearly break the law via blockading streets and otherwise taking actions without appropriate permits, etc. Take a look at all the spontaneous outdoor prayers being performed in the streets and on the grounds of churches and places of government in Europe and England (and even here a bit though it seldom makes the news).

Add in the deliberate desecration of war/veteran memorials, cemeteries, and other cultural items of import by those who conquer and claim them for Palestine (and Islam), and you get a taste of what is to come. Can they pull it off? Yes, at least in cities where the leadership has already been suborned or replaced (think NY, Seattle, Toronto, etc. for the former, and London as a prime example of the latter). On the rare occasions when arrests are made or citations issued, those seem to get quietly dismissed. Most of the time, no matter how egregious the behavior, it is condoned and allowed. Not so is any counter-protest, to the point of arresting or attacking under color of law those who simply carry a flag of their nation (or in the case of the Castreaux regime, dare to ask questions of its members).

Well, maybe they can pull it off. People are getting fed up, and while a good bit of effort has gone into provoking a response so the individual who acts to defend others (see NY again) or otherwise “assaults” those committing crimes can be hammered hard to drive the point home to the proles (pour encourager les autres). Problem is, people are fed up and the rage is bottled up to the point it is a much larger danger than I suspect those behind these protests realize. They expect easy to control individuals or small groups, or larger who decide on a legal fight via lawsuits in court. Problem is, while I hope to see the latter, the amount of pissed off people is such that I think it is already far outside their control, and they are going to be extremely and unpleasantly surprised on how far things go when they pop.

I’m seeing that and some other interesting signs even here in Indy. Despite desperate fellating by most of the corporate media here, the pro-terrorist/rapist demonstrations are small, and frankly pathetic. The public is increasingly not only unresponsive, but growing antagonistic to them. Maybe it helps that there is some pushback against the corporate narrative by talk radio and non-traditional media here. When it is repeatedly pointed out that the demonstrators are pro-terrorist/rapist (a point that needs to be hammered home hard) and the public sees the contempt with which such protests/protestors hold them… Despite the incompetent administration of the city (and the gross mismanagement of the State), I have some small hope that we might, maybe, avoid some of the worst of things. For those in the large blue cities, get out now if you can for the worst is yet to come.

Sarah has started a series of posts that look promising for resistance outside the big blue cities. Looking forward to it, and would love to find a way to mitigate the chaos likely to come. In fact, I’ve been praying for such ways and for Divine intervention to minimize what I think may be headed our way. On a more general note, having to do with the rampant antisemitism revealed crawling like maggots under the skin of the body politic, this post at The Lid is a good read.

Oh, and speaking of behind the curtain, I’ve noticed that the fact that a lot of billionaires and millionaires are building bunkers and other doomsday retreats is finally starting to get more widespread attention. I’ve been aware for a while and have (I think, stupid lightning) mentioned it a time or two. Still a bit annoyed as some land I had considered out West got bought up for same. Sure is driving prices up… I will also note that if all are doing security the same way, which includes treating such security as dirt, a potential threat to be controlled by holding families hostage or otherwise for blackmail, well, things may not go the way the so-called elites think. And, yes, there are far better ways to ensure loyalty, fealty, and more. Also, when people realize what you have in store for them and their families, they talk within the community as it were. For the record, while many big names are building in Hawai’i, you would be amazed at how many are quietly (and through shell companies, etc.) building in the American West and even into portions of the midwest…

With your help, I hope to be writing a bit more on preparedness, and ways we might can divert and mitigate some of the potential consequences economic and otherwise. Meantime, be prepared and keep your things where you can find them in the dark (literal or figurative). Also, keep an eye out for who is behind the curtain being so free with money, logistics, and political favors. Don’t count on Toto, Be Toto! More soon.

Getting hit by lightning is not fun! If you would like to help me in my recovery efforts, which include moving once we have medical issues cleared up, feel free to hit the fundraiser at A New Life on GiveSendGo, use the options in the Tip Jar in the upper right, or drop me a line to discuss other methods. It is thanks to your gifts and prayers that I am still going. Thank you.

Windows Again

No, not the operating system, those darn Russian windows have claimed another ally of Vladimir. Or at least a former ally of Vladimir. Some details are fuzzy, but it is dangerous to be either a full ally or someone who failed to be what Vladimir wanted to see in an ally. Waffle even a little bit…

Right now, no definitive information if Egorov was an ally who got in the way of the opposition, failed to meet a test of Vladimir’s, or what. There are rumors of other deaths recently, but not a lot of solid news. Politics truly is a blood sport in Russia, so would not be surprised if there were indeed more as things are heating up behind the scenes/curtains even as a picture of calm is trying very hard to be projected.

Also, taking reports of Gerasimov’s death with a grain of salt for now. The original source is interesting, and they deleted the report. For now, watching to see what happens and what does come out. Remember, if it comes from Moscow take it with a tun of salt…

UPDATE: Yes, I do think Vladimir’s New Year’s speech was either computer enhanced or computer generated. Watch the area around his neck and collar…

More soon.

Getting hit by lightning is not fun! If you would like to help me in my recovery efforts, which include moving once we have medical issues cleared up, feel free to hit the fundraiser at A New Life on GiveSendGo, use the options in the Tip Jar in the upper right, or drop me a line to discuss other methods. It is thanks to your gifts and prayers that I am still going. Thank you.