Saturday, February 27, 2010

History Threatens to Repeat Itself

Why didn't we get HillaryCare in 1994? According to Robert Reich, it was because Fed Chairman Greenspan let the administration know that he wouldn't go along with it. Fast forward 16 years and Bush appointee Ben Bernanke is saying the same thing to the Obama administration.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

J&G Sales Offers Argentines

My standard sidearm is a 9mm hipower made by FN. When I bought it FN was blowing them out through CDNN for $400. Since then the price for a hipower has skyrocketed to around $800. In retrospect I should have bought two. Since then several of the manufacturers of hipower clones, like Hungarian firm FEG, have also gone out of business. You can't get a cheap clone anymore either. The good news is that J&G is now offering Argentine M90 hipowers for around $330.

These aren't as slick as FN made guns and they don't have the modern extended manual safeties or firing pin safety. I think that makes them around a MKII in FN nomenclature. But they are made under license to FN and parts should still interchange (unlike say the Inglis slide and frame kits from Numrich). That's good news if you want to drop in Cylinder and Slide parts kits.

I may still pick one up as a potential build gun.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Tracers Work Both Ways

As two recent photo sets from Oleg Volk demonstrate, the same goes for green laser sights.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Frank Lautenberg

Pundits are speculating that he may be the next Democrat to announce their retirement because of his recent health issues. Lautenberg is 86 and recently injured himself in a fall after which physicians discovered a bleeding ulcer. I still doubt he'll retire, not because it would be a bad idea, but because he's already retired in 2000. When Lautenberg was tapped to take over for the disgraced Bob Torricelli in 2002, he publicly expressed deep regret for ever retiring and did so again in 2008.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The MiddleMan Episode 13

The ABC Family show The Middleman was cancelled after 12 episodes. The cast did a table read of the unfilmed 13th episode at San Diego ComicCon 2009. I finally got around to tracking down the YouTube footage of it. Quite excellent. There is also a comic book version of the episode as well, but I'm not sure if it is currently in print as Amazon isn't carrying it.

Zombie Dice

Howard Tayler is playing a very twisted dice game. I may have to go looking for this the next time I'm near by Days of Knights or Between Books.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Streetside Engineering

I have an idea I'd like to try out. I current have large piles of snow in front of my house from the recent winter unpleasantness. Because of the surface area to mass ratio, these six foot tall piles are going to take forever to melt. I'd like to speed that up using smarts.

My first thought was to sprinkle them liberally with rock salt. The problem is they're big enough that putting enough salt in place might be troublesome. My second thought is that the biggest piles are on my lawn and any salt will end up on or under my yard. I'd rather not salt my own fields as Rome did to Carthage.

My second thought is to stab some aluminum strips into the heart of the larger piles. Aluminum is an excellent heat conductor and is available in a number of forms at the local hardware store. If I can find some cheap strips (preferably black), I can essentially conduct heat into the heart of the pile. I could put them in in the morning and then pull them when I got home so they wouldn't cool the piles during the night. Not sure if they'd work, but it might be neat to try.

Thoughts from my fellow nerds?

Friday, February 05, 2010


So at what point do we fire the people in charge of predicting job loses and gains?