C’est en Septembre

There are science fiction stories that I remember more in aggregate than in individual, which start with a place/date thing to avoid having the characters tell you when this takes place.  This is often true if the story involves multiple centuries.  I’m finding myself doing it in this time travel thing I hope to finish today after writing a bit on Through Fire (only 10k words yesterday, but things are beginning to fall in place and the story to be functional.  Apparently it’s a bad idea to write while profoundly depressed and tired from being ill.  Then the story is just blah.  Who knew?  Maybe the people writing grey goo are chronically depressed?  No?)

The device goes something like this “It was the twenty-second century and we were all mourning.” Or “It was May of 1534 and we were all dancing.”

So, it was September and there were terrorists under every bed. It was enough to make one wonder what was Isil and what was over here.

It was September, and it was a time of pleading.  The family of an hostage pleaded for his life.  England pleaded that Scotsmen might accept the proffered near independence, instead of independence. Our “friends” in the Middle East asked for us to help them combat Islamic extremism (possibly the same exact Islamic extremism they funded.  The Middle East is like that.)  Liberia pleaded for help with Ebola. But the only plea that worked as cold hard cash, even if we all know what  happens when you give Dane Geld.

It was September and the Western world was losing faith in its institutions. From health to care nothing worked as advertised. Finances were in disarray. And we couldn’t help but wonder if the elites were as smart as they claimed to be.

It was September and Russian Putin was blustering.  Pushing the limits of what he thought he should be allowed, and trying to terrify the rest of Europe, which one fears might not be very hard.

It was September and the  cry of the SJWs was heard in the land, and this author was sick and tired of her colleagues with Stockholm syndrome.

And she put this post up, and went back to pounding on the keyboard, which is the thing for which she actually gets paid.  Have fun in the comments.

163 responses to “C’est en Septembre

  1. Tom Wolfe, in writing about the Art World, talks about how the 20th century saw the Smart People abandon centuries of rich history and success to hare after “starting from zero” and similar idiocies. He also notes, hopefully, that representational art is making a comeback and expresses the belief that the 21st century may go down in history as “the 20th century’s hangover”.

    The 20th century also saw the Smart People abandon the growth of personal freedom and the spread of civilization through the third world in favor of collectivism and post colonial hand wringing. One can hope we will start to recover from these, too.

    Hold the line against the dilettantes and barbarians.

  2. wait … you mean we normally don’t have fun in the comments?

  3. Sarah, I am pressing grapes today, I will think of you.
    (Concords, they are concords not any wine grape.)

  4. Despite all the weird and bad in the world, life is still good. God is in his heaven, and all will EVENTUALLY be well with the world. In the meanwhile, we can hang out here, do what we can, and otherwise laugh at and make fun of the turkeys out there.

    Good friends, laughter, good wine, and good food helps a lot.

    • As I have said before (though maybe not here) there is good reason to hope. The would-be rulers are weaker than any previous elite that I know of. They haven’t even managed to disarm the common folk, and far from commanding the military they despise it and don’t know how to use it when they need to.

      They have lost control of the media, by failing to understand the nature of the internet in time. They are losing control of education, albeit slowly.

      Compared to historical ruling classes that have been overthrown, this current bunch are stunted and crippled.

    • Good friends, laughter, good wine, and good food helps a lot.

      Yep, and you know you have all these and are living right when some SJW gets upset at you for being happy.

      Or just being.

    • The turkeys–wild–are totally sane. They are hanging out in my field by my chickens, eating the chicken feed my boys ‘accidentally’ spilled, and generally entertaining my family with their brashness. Obviously, from the turkeys’ perspective, a flock of thirty chickens indicates a lack of poultry predators–I don’t think they comprehend the tractors.
      Too bad there are officially no wild turkeys in our hunting unit and thus no turkey season.

      The problem with using animal slurs is that the animals are inevitably better behaved than the humans being derogatorily compared to them. If only the SJW rose to the level of common sense possessed by wild turkeys, we’d have a lot fewer issues.

      • “Too bad there are officially no wild turkeys in our hunting unit and thus no turkey season.”

        If there are no wild turkeys there, then obviously the one you just shot isn’t wild and so is not under the jurisdiction of Fish and Feathers, right? 😉

        Oh and thanks for reminding me to grab my shotgun and toss it in the truck, I have been seeing turkeys every morning and keep forgetting to grab the shotgun. Deep fried turkey nuggets coming up for dinner tomorrow. Yumm! 🙂

      • It’s interesting, going out for a walk and seeing, sauntering the other way, the wild turkeys and their great brood of chicks.

      • Too bad there are officially no wild turkeys in our hunting unit and thus no turkey season.

        How sure are you that they’re wild?

        There are places you can order turkeys from, and people release them. They’re feral animals, then– NOT wild.

        • I think she is around Blackfoot, trust me, they’re wild (well all the turkeys in Idaho were originally released, but by ‘official’ people. But they were wild turkeys that were trapped in other states and transplanted, same as all the ‘wild’ turkeys in Washington State.

  5. Pokes head out of entrance to bunker, scans the horizon and looks disappointed. “Oh I was expecting Dragons” Quickly jumps into the chute that will deliver him safely into the carp proof bunker pulling on the rope that will collapse the entrance behind him.

  6. http://www.msf.org/article/liberia-boy-who-tricked-ebola
    En septembre nous avons trouvé des inspirations aussi. On y danse, on y danse.
    Merci pour votre blog et tous vos efforts. Courage tous le monde.

  7. Gee, do you suppose anyone in Western Europe finally realized that the only reason they got away with their socialist agenda for so long was that they spend bupkis on their military, instead counting on the US to bail them out. So now we have an empty suit as commander in chief, and Putin knows it.
    Anyone think this will end well? No, didn’t expect you would.

      • (Trying again in case it wasn’t just the link)

      • I hope we aren’t doing a rerun of 1938. Another World War with the Japanese as allies and China the enemy. Germany as an ally and Russia as the enemy. Sorta sounds like a hot version of the Cold War. The leaders who won it are now all dead.

        Hopefully, We will elect strong leaders to face down our enemies. Strong constitutional

        • It scans to me more like a rerun of 1914 than 1938 in a lot of ways, not the least of which the view of the self-anointed class that they have everything completely under control.

          • WWI with today’s weapons is a truly horrifying thought. WWI was I think a more destructive war. Not geographically,. but demographically and politically.

            I really really Don’t want another World War . We need a better president if we’re going into another World War. Would Putin consider using WMD’s? .WMDs are NBC. Nukes, biowarfare and chemical (I think). My worst fear is that someone will use bio agents. weaponized, easy to catch and with no known antidote.

            • NBC’s the usual term. Nuclear, biological, and chemical. Bio… well, like you say, I also worry about something weaponized. Frankly, Ebola’s got be a bit concerned.

            • WWI happening with today’s weapons? Pretty much an impossibility.

              I think it was a couple of days ago that I alluded to the fact that WWI was pretty much a truly worst-case historical scenario, where it played out the way it did and was as destructive as it was due to the precise moment in technological/military development. A decade earlier than 1914, and it would have likely been the Franco-Prussian War, redux. Ten-fifteen years later, and it would have been like the early stages of WWII. Either way, battles like the Somme would not have happened.

              So, a war like WWI with modern weapons? Not unless something takes out all the communications gear, all transportation other than railways and ships, and we lobotomize 90% of the military. It ain’t happening.

              Which isn’t to say that a war as destructive as WWI isn’t possible, anymore. It is, but it’s not going to be something that happens the way that WWI played out. For one thing, the technology just isn’t there to create the huge disparity between the powers of defense vs. the powers of offense. Should someone develop something like a real force field, or a super cheap and nasty way to rid the battlefield of armored vehicles, yeah… Maybe. The sophistication of our military thought, however, is a lot higher. Odds are, someone would go back, look over the history, and re-develop the German Sturmtruppen tactics that nearly overwhelmed the Allies, and only failed due to the logistics issues inherent to the times.

              My guess is that the greatest likelihood of repeating WWI’s charnel house is if something akin to what is described in Robert Adam’s New Model Army comes to pass. Any social/technological movement that comes along and enables the sort of diffuse networking/virtual organization system that he describes could lead to a general level of destruction we can only contemplate with horror. And, that’s actually the most likely cause of something akin to WWI–A total mismatch between older technique/technology and the coming thing. Imagine downloading an app onto someone’s smartphone that takes in the ideas of Neil Stephenson’s The Diamond Age, and gives it a military twist, training them to serve as elements of a vast, diffuse networked citizen army that literally melts into the populace, while simultaneously enabling the organization of ad hoc citizen force elements to take on the government and other entities.

              Given sufficient impetus, something like that is truly frightening, in terms of the destruction and damage that would ensue. Even as a force for what we here might term “good”, that sort of thing is absolutely disturbing. I can’t see how you’d ever regain control over the use of force, as a society. Which might be a good thing, in general, but for the people caught up in it? Holy hell, would it be awful to live through.

              • o be clear, what I was saying above is that the lead-up to WWI seems to me to be rhyming with some of what’s going on today.

                Any social/technological movement that comes along and enables the sort of diffuse networking/virtual organization system that he describes could lead to a general level of destruction we can only contemplate with horror.

                I’d say this, if equally available to and implemented by both sides, could lead to a stalemate, though not in thousand-mile-long-trenchlines tthis time

                The thing that worries me is the inevitable slide towards the edge part that I’ve seen in some of the contemporary sources in the run up to August 1914 – unless we’re smarter this time when a similar confluence of events occurs, we could be in for a really bad chunk of history righth in our laps.

                • Here’s a more thought out concept of what I’m talking about.

                  Let’s say that we start out by developing an app that affords easy ad-hoc formations of social groups and networks between people who are ideologically compatible, but who would never meet each other in real life. This enables a somewhat different set of “facts on the ground”, when it comes to traditional social organizations. Imagine a “virtual fraternal organization creation tool”, if you will. As with all things these days, such a thing would almost have to become a political tool, one that might supplant, and would sure as hell threaten the established entities in that sphere.

                  From threat to suppression, we would see a counter-reaction, probably first by gobbling up and disseminating information of a security nature, starting with cyber security, moving to physical security, and probably ending by putting basic military operations information online. With collaborative tools that would likely be built in, it wouldn’t be too damn long before you had people who’d actually done things like participate in basic military training putting up and developing “virtual basic military training” sub-apps, which would take a total neophyte through the initial steps of learning the skills of a modern soldier. Eventually, you’d have all sorts of interesting collaborative tools developed, like “So, you’ve managed to find and/or capture a mortar… Here’s how you put it into operation:” and “How to steal a tank…”.

                  After a bit, the issue of suppressing a population that’s essentially militarized itself with this sort of thing is going to be quite impossible. You’re also going to have problems with free-lance groups deciding that, gee, we ought to run those nasty, nasty Muslims and/or Mormons out of the county/state/country, followed shortly thereafter by the nasty Muslims and/or Mormons doing the same damn thing in self-defense. Cue general state of nature, with the government completely unable to cope.

                  I think that Neil Stephenson had a really prescient view of the possibilities inherent to AI and modern computing devices as social augmentation and adaptation tools. My bet is that there’s going to be a fairly large uptake on something like the Young Ladies Illustrated Primer, and it’s going to happen in the blink of an eye once things get going. Dissatisfied with the quality of education down at the local school? Fine, go buy the seventh-generation competitor to the current iPad, and hand it over to your kid, loaded with the appropriate app. You’re probably going to see a lot of things like virtual apprenticeships and training programs replace traditional residential colleges, universities, and vocational training. The basics will be automated, and the higher levels of learning will likely be passed on through the ‘net by the semi-retired elders of each area of expertise. The big industry won’t be education, it will be certification and credentialling.

                  The same process is going to take place in just about every arena in society, as we become more flexible in response to the rapid changes in everything in society. The military sphere is just as likely as anything else to be affected–They’ll be able to virtualize training and indoctrination, and disseminate the process on a wide scale. Kids are going to have to learn how to learn in this environment, and their adaption to it is going to make it a hell of a lot harder to train and instruct them with the old-school methods.

                  Basically, I see the smartphone developing into a contact node for just about everything. Need to learn how to do something? Old job obsolete? Find something you’re interested in, download a training app, find a mentor/sensei in the area, and away you go. When you’ve mastered the new skill, get certified on it. Bam, new jobskill.

                  Put this kind of crap out there for military purposes, and you’re going to enable a completely different kind of conflict environment. What happens when you’re in the middle of a firefight in some urban area, and the locals start suddenly flocking to the enemy side, hauling in supplies and ammo right where they need it, downloading apps that tell them how to manage complex weapons systems when they find them abandoned…? How would it look from our side, when that same thing happens? Do you have a system that allows for such instantaneous force augmentation? Can you effectively manage the help?

                  What does war look like when everybody on the battlefield is effectively able to become an effective participant? What do you do when a sympathetic non-combatant who has oversight on enemy activity starts calling you up with position information so that you can bring that enemy under fire? If you’re able to integrate stuff like that, guess what? You’re going to beat the crap out of an opponent who can’t.

                  Enable stuff like this, and everything about war will have to change, from the basic laws that govern it, right up to the equipment we use. And, war is going to go right back to being nightmarishly more destructive, because there won’t be anybody you can automatically assume are non-combatants.

                  The first war we fight under this set of conditions is going to make WWI look like a cakewalk. The weapons and basic military technology won’t be the biggest adaptational problem–It’s going to be the surrounding social matrix of the entire military. For WWI, the symbol of the problem was the machine gun and barbed wire–For this coming conflict, the symbol is going to be the iPhone and Android smartphone. How do you effectively maintain operational security when everybody and his cousin have access to real-time imagery equipment, and the means to transmit it? Hell, even taking down the networks won’t be doing much bloody good in the near future, as the ubiquity of mesh networking between devices becomes more prevalent. Sure, you got the cell tower–How about all those damn phones that are out there talking to each other over short range comms, and what the hell do you do when one of them hooks up to a landline link to your enemy’s headquarters? Or, the locals start bouncing stuff off some hobbyist’s drone quadcopter? Hell, just having them send the thing off with a belly full of smartcards would do enough damn damage to your operations…

                  I think we’re already seeing the opening phases, to be quite honest–The Russians put up a website showing how to use the Buk Anti-Aircraft missile shortly after MH17 was shot down, in order to provide plausible deniability for the likely use of actual Russian military personnel in the Ukraine. While that was simply cover for an intel operation, how long is it going to be before people are actually able to get information on operating just about any and all military hardware by simply doing a search on their phones? They’ll try to suppress the information, and the networks will get censored and shut down, but I think those remedies are going to be sidestepped very quickly.

                  If you look at the sine wave of military professionalism vs. mass armies, I think we may well be at another peak for the professionals having the monopoly on things, and that there’s about to be another huge change much like what happened after the French Revolution. If I can effectively militarize an entire population by providing the information to operate most weapons and also allow for organization…? Yeah, we’re right back at the era of mass armies, again. Lovely ‘effing prospect, that is…

                  • A) Knowing how to change the magazine in an M-16 and how to flip the safety off will not turn an ordinary citizen into a marksman.

                    B) You KNOW how much garbage information is out there on the Web. What happens when that is put out there deliberately? Your user manual for how to operate a captured American mortar leaves out that one important bit that you need to know that keeps it from blowing you up the first time you try it.

                    C) The enemy knows this too. “Friendly Locals” telling you where the enemy is hiding could just as easily be directing you into a trap. Unvetted intelligence is worth nothing.

                    Also, one of the first things the professional armies do is disrupt communications. Your smartphone is useless without the cell towers.

                    And finally, civilians who involve themselves in battle and fight without a uniform are eligible to be shot on sight as a spy/saboteur under the Geneva conventions. Now admittedly, most of the Middle East is not a signatory to them, but we’re still beholden to them.

                    • Re-read what I wrote, again–Most of your objections are covered.

                      Like it or not, something along these lines is going to happen. Just like with the post-French Revolution professionals vs. the French mass conscript armies, the “new model” army won’t need to have perfect skills, merely enough knowledge to know what to do with the weapons they get their hands on. The skill with them will come with practical experience.

                      We’re about to go through a massive change in how we educate and train. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that it will only apply to civilian skills, or that it won’t influence the realm of the military. You also underestimate the practical effect of ideological commitment to a movement or ideology. People are hungry for something besides the old bullshit, which is one reason you see so many young men and women in the West making conversion to Islam and going off to fight in places like Syria. If there’s one thing that the West has been really good with over the years, it is weaponizing things that one might first think were purely civilian in application. The new means of educating and training will be weaponized, and will probably lead to a new era of mass armies. You won’t be creating even armies equivalent to what we did in WWI and WWII, but they will be mass armies on a scale that we today can’t even imagine.

                      What I fear is that the mechanisms of social control won’t be in place for them, and the effects of what happens while we wait for those to develop won’t be at all pretty.

                      The gun basically democratized brute force, and enabled the untrained peasant to take on the man who spent his entire life training for war. Things like I’m foreseeing are going to enable the masses to do the same thing at a meta level with regards to mobilizing and massing forces to counter the forces of our current institutions of government, for good or ill.

                      There is a sea change going on all around us. At the moment, we have hobbyists moving into surveillance territory that used to be the sole purview of governments. Drones are showing things that once required big, societal-scale organizations like NBC or the government to gather and disseminate. Now, it is being done by a guy with a quadcopter and a YouTube account. How long before someone takes the step of weaponizing that sort of thing for conflict? Just being able to organize a protest using these tools is going to make it exponentially harder to counter–What happens when Quadcopter Man sticks an improvised warhead or molotov cocktail on his $300.00 drone and goes hunting for the Sherif’s MRAP with it?

                      Times, they are a changing. Most of the efficiency of modern war comes not from the weapons, but from the support and intelligence systems behind the weapons. What happens when Joe Blow has access to things on that same level of efficiency, and a reason to use them that way?

                      The 18th and 19th Century showed us what happens when you enable the lowest common denominator to become equal with men who trained for war all their lives. I think we’re about to see what happens when that same sort of thing happens on an institutional scale, as the mass of people discovers that it can do the same thing for itself that the old state institutions used to have a monopoly on.

                    • Joe Blow wants to live his live comfortably and not get killed. Just because a few idiots go all Jihadi doesn’t mean the general population is about to rise up en-masse for a revolution.

                    • “Joe Blow wants to live his live comfortably and not get killed.”

                      I think what Kirk is positing is what happens when Joe Blow CAN’T live his life comfortably, and his best chances of not getting killed are to kill the other guys first. Think about the Balkans, now think about them with the technology Kirk is talking about easily available. Now think about what could cause the US to slide into a Balkan-like state.

                    • Possibly relevant, from Paul Mirengoff of POWERLINE:

                      Hamas forced Gazans to remain in harm’s way

                      Mudran Zahran is a Palestinian writer and academic from Jordan who now resides in the UK as a political refugee. In the aftermath of the latest war between Israel and Hamas, he interviewed Gazans to find out what they had to say about the conflict. His report appears on the website of the Gatestone Institute.

                      According to Zahran, Gazans told him of atrocities and war crimes committed by Hamas. Their testimony confirms what seemed clear enough at the time — Hamas is responsible for the deaths of hundreds of Gazan civilians.

                      Here is what a medical worker said: …

                    • And you still don’t get universal participation. The American Revolution was fought by a tiny minority. There were loyalists, sure, but most people sat it out and in the end saluted whatever flag they were shown.

                      The same is true everywhere, you have your young bucks who are eager for a fight, and older ideologues who will step up to lead them, but the vast majority of the population are boiled frogs who put up with it, and who can’t act in unison of purpose because they’d rather let someone else go first and see how it works out.

                      Even on Flight 93, a lot of passengers probably stayed in their seats while a few brave souls moved against the jihadis.

                    • Re “only a tiny minority:” At peak the “minority” rebel colonists fielded a combined force of about 4% of the colonies total population. If the US today were to field a combined military of 4% of the total population that military would field 12.5 million people.

                      US Civil War total enlistment (both sides) was about 11% of the 1865 population; WWI US enlistment was 4% of the 1918 population; and WWII US enlistment by 1945 totaled about 9% of the population.

                      For perspective, the current total US military headcount is just a bit under 2.3 million, 1.4 million of which is active duty and 880,000 in the reserves.

                      Given participation rates at these historic percentages, the fighting forces available solely from the US range from 12 million (at WWI participation) to 29 million (US WWII level), or in the extreme case 35 million for all sides in a US Civil War redux.

                      35 million would be twenty four times the current active duty component headcount, which leads any comparison solidly into the territory of the supposed Stalin, or maybe Clausewitz, quote of “In military affairs, quantity has a quality all it’s own.”

                    • Unfortunately I don’t see anything that can get the population as riled up or interested in fighting as the Revolution or the Civil War.

                      And then there’s the influence of the media, be it the pamphleteers of the Revolution or the radio firebrands during WWII, the media now resolutely fights against going to war over anything. The most important part of a popular revolution is being popular. (Which is why, in spite of all the media polishing, they couldn’t shine up the turd that was the Occupy movement. If that’s the best this country can do for a “Revolution” we may as well go out and get fitted for our slave collars.)

                    • Not to mention what I always tell liberals salivating over the prospect of sending the military after us: Yeah, and you’ll learn what collateral damage IS when they use a JDAM or artillery on the wingnut next door.

            • Well, the good news regarding your better president concerns are that by the time anything gets going, the current occupant of the White House will probably be out. Whether the replacement will be better…

              That’s anyone’s guess. But the guy most responsible for getting us into this mess should be gone by then.

          • Yes, just waiting on an Archduke to get shot… aaaany second now.

      • Patrick Chester

        “How will this end?”
        *warblemuttergrumble*”In FIRE.” *grumblemutterwarble*

      • William O. B'Livion

        Or it’ll in in tsars.

    • Well, hey, they can cure their unemployment with a draft.
      Umm, wait, what percentage of their young persons are second generation Muslims, and they might be useful against Russia, but turn on them if they have problems with any Middle East or North African nations?

  8. In hopes of adding some levity to the day, I post this without further comment…

    Not safe for work, and no, I’ve got NO idea, either… This showed up on another board I frequent as part of a thread discussing the imminent downfall of civilization as exemplified by the so-called “Brony” phenomenon.

    • So, PG-13 rated “pony girls”. I have to say that, below an R rating, I’m not sure I see the point….

      • I don’t know that there IS a point…

        After I found this, I just spent about 15 minutes going “WTF? What did I just watch…?”

        All part of the grand spectrum of human weirdness, I guess. Apparently, this has been big in New Zealand for quite awhile…

        • It’s been big all over the place, although from what I’ve read, it first got its start in England at least a century ago.

          In the kinkier circles, pretending to be a pony, or a puppy, or kitty, is one way of breaking away from all the stress and demands of being an adult human being in the modern world. (I suppose the same could be said of the infantilists, but those folks creep me out. One should never mix kink and even the appearance of underage around me, and that includes the schoolgirl thing.)

          Still, that was the damnedest place to attach a tail.

          • Furries have gone mainstream?

            • These typically involve leather and rubber more than fur.

              Frankly, I can’t think of much overlap, although there was this one girl I knew….

              • There’s quite a bit of overlap.

                • Well, I’d grant it more one way than the other. There are a lot of Furries who are Pony-etc-play aficionados, but the BDSM Pony players aren’t much interested in the rest of Furry Fandom.

                  (Kinda like there are a lot of Furries who are Bronies, but not all Bronies are Furries).

                  Nevertheless, I quit that fandom a decade and a half ago. I might have been a big-ish name back then, but now, the only ones who remember me are my stalkers, and hopefully they’re finally losing interest.

        • New Zealand? That’s…surprising. The only jokes I’ve heard about that sort of thing included sheep.

        • I don’t know what I keyed on, but one of the first coherent thoughts in the middle of watching this just after the young ladies appeared (right after “WTF?”), was “they look like Kiwis.”

          You can tell it wasn’t professionally done in the US as there’s no mandatory PC mix of racial representation.

        • I understood that Kiwi girls were different, but this is really different.

    • Whiiiinnnneeeer

    • I am not much impressed by the costuming, which seems designed to eliminate curvature and titillation. The dancing seems to be little more than a basic exercise in imitating animal movement, although I give them credit for the amount of work don en pointe without aid of shoes, although patent leather stilettos might have provided some much needed kink.

      If you like your women to be pretty much cylindrical this is probably effective.
      Nice tune, though.

  9. Hmph, posted a quick little YouTube and it appears to be moderated… nonetheless, I read Sarah’s PJ Media article, and followed the link to the Turkey City Lexicon. Good stuff, half of which I’d seen around before, but it leaves me wondering sometimes what’s left that doesn’t get hit by some of these terms….

    But what struck me was the sidebar. The Featured Book at the top of the bar was “Children of the Eighth Day” by Don Sakers, and it was saddled with this blurb: “Rikk Hoister and his cousins are the pinnacle of human evolution, cloned geniuses with powerful paranormal abilities. Life is good–until ships and soldiers of the Terran Empire invade their homeworld and take most of the Hoister Family captive.”

    BAM, you want an example of Gray Goo, there you go. Nasty ol’ Humans, they show up and ruin everything! I’d bet dollars to donuts that our young Slan protagonist lives in a socialist paradise too before the authoritarian Republicans come in, twirling their mustaches.

  10. Christopher M. Chupik

    Canadian fighter jets had a close encounter with Russian jets a couple of days ago. Normally, I’d be confident that the US would help protect Canada, but my confidence of late is somewhat shaken.

    • We’d protect Canada. Ya’ll oughta worry what happens after the protection ends.

    • No, there’s an existing joint command structure for North American Air Defense (NORAD) that can and will move and vector fighters from either country towards anything fishy, and as there’s no political action required to keep that in place, it will stay in place. The current doofuses would have to stick their neck out to make any change, and they won’t do that in an election year.

      Note this is why there are F-22s based in Alaska.

      Checking the web, the Russians were intercepted by USAF F-22s and Canadian CF-18s (from the Beeb at http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-29288277):

      Two Alaskan-based F-22 fighter jets and two Canadian CF-18 fighter jets were scrambled to intercept the Russian planes in two separate incidents on Wednesday evening and Thursday morning.

      So, saber rattling by the shirtless Tsar, but nothing more.

      • Christopher M. Chupik

        Let’s hope so. But Obama has a tendancy to treat American allies poorly, so I’m always a bit worried.

  11. Our October book will be Studies in Words by C.S. Lewis.

  12. Putin is a school yard bully, taking advantage of the normal Russian mind-set. Obama is his mark, which is his natural role: permanent victim.
    There is a way to deal with bullies, and O doesn’t know what that is.

  13. TOTALLY off topic, but I was cleaning the coffee pot for tomorrow’s brew and found myself recalling the theme song for Sugarfoot, so on return to the computer I plugged it into the ole search engine to find out how badly I remembered it (not too badly, as it happened.) As it would happen, one thing lead to another (theme from Bronco, to be precise) and then I chanced upon a short video which led to this site:

    Videos of general (perhaps) interest include:

    Louis L’Amour Writing Tips: Building a story
    How a Louis L’Amour Audio Book Was Made
    Louis L’Amour and the story of The Sacketts
    Writing Tips from Louis L’Amour – How to overcome writer’s block
    Louis L’Amour advice for writers: The Struggle for a young author
    How Louis L’Amour started his writing career

    Mostly just over a minute, with a few running up to ten minutes.

  14. Sarah,
    do you have any A/C units in your house? Window or central. You might consider spraying a mold killer into them.

    I’m very sensitive to molds, and normally I notice a smell from them. So, not considering that something might have changed, I didn’t bother to do this with my window unit, other than cleaning the dust screen. Kept getting sick, along with random fevers for no apparent reason. Then I got diagnosed with asthma. (Took a while to figure that out, as I have a version that doesn’t cause me to wheeze in a noticeable fashion. Just feel like I ran a 1/4 mile. Turns out it may run in the family.)

    Anyway, being suspicious, while I had the filter screen out, I sprayed half a can of automotive vent system mold killer into the guts, and let it sit for a while. Boy, did THAT cause a bad smell! Later, I ran just the fan for a day while I was gone. Suddenly, no constant asthma condition. No idea if it was connected to the fevers and low temps, but my inhaler was not very effective prior to the cleaning. Hardly use it now. Hmm, I may nuke the a/c again, just to be certain. Bounce the rubble, so to speak. Although, glowing in the dark would be a bad thing, in this case!

  15. And we couldn’t help but wonder if the elites were as smart as they claimed to be.

    I don’t wonder. I know the answer. It starts with LOL

  16. FINALLY you did an actual sort of token post, even if it’s got lots of meat— MORE TYPING!