Archive for May, 2010

24
May
10

Spring Cleaning For Facebook

Those of us who use facebook, however marginally, have undoubtedly seen all kinds of little applications that promise to relieve us of our boredom for the low price of access to our page. I suspect that 99% of these little apps are completely innocuous and I am not saying you shouldn’t ever use any of them, but the fact remains that once authorized they continue to have access to your account until such time as you pull that permission. From that they could potentially datamine your info for whatever nefarious purposes they have in mind (think spam) and so I think that it is a good idea to get rid of that permission from time to time.

If you want to get rid of all the applications that have access to your info, go to the Account drop down on the upper right, select Application Settings. then from the Show drop down menu select Authorized. You can then see all of the applications that have access to your info and can remove those you don’t want any longer. You might be surprised at just how many apps have access to your account.

I had been pruning access using the “recently used” tab and so “only” had 31 apps on there, about 7 of which are FB standard and they cannot be removed and one is “Marketplace” and that is a big classified ad system from FB that I want to keep as well. But going thru this I found some intellectually stimulating things like “How Mennonite are you” and “Which plastic army guy are you.” Clearly the cleanup was in order. So now my account is clean and the paranoid in me is much happier.

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20
May
10

Pedophiles: I Tried

I tried! I really did! My heart bleeds for these poor unfortunate women. I offered to slake their lusts but I see that yet another, by not taking up my oh so kind and generous offer, has gone after our youth.

Christie Elliot, it didn’t have to be this way!

20
May
10

Mexico Pres rejects any effort to “criminalize migration”

This is quite interesting. I didn’t know that the Mexicans had a say in our legislative process. Maybe that was something put in place under NAFTA?

So despite the Arizona law being favored 2-1 by pollsters, the Obama Administration is upset with it and wants to push thru McAmnesty. Altho, they may need to get another name for it as McCain was only for it before he was against it. The ObAmnesty* plan calls improving border security, ensuring employers are held accountable if they try to hire undocumented workers or break other laws, and assigning a series of responsibilities on the millions of people living in the United States illegally. Those include requiring them to pay a penalty and back taxes, learn English and get in line toward becoming a legal resident and citizen of the country. I am with them up till the assigning a series of responsibilities. The only responsibility that they have to this country is to obey its laws. Particularly the ones about immigration. They come across illegally and take that opportunity away from someone who has been following the various rules and regs to migrate legally and this is extremely unjust. This of course on top of the crime, disease, drunken driving and drugs they bring with them and the jobs and fair wages they take from the America citizenry.**

*I just came up with that. I want credit for it and royalty when it gets picked up by Fox News

** To throw something to the Democrats, just think of how much more carbon these illegals are emitting by living in the US compared to how much they would be emitting in Mexico. Its our duty to Gaia to expel these evil selfish carbon emitters to where they can’t do so much harm. Oh yeah, and the expulsion would increase the percentage of the workforce that is unionized thereby providing a living wage for a higher percentage of the population.

19
May
10

Pro-Choice Slaughter

How fitting that the head of the House Pro-Choice Caucus is New York Representative Louis Slaughter.

You just can’t make this stuff up. No one would believe you.

19
May
10

Civilian Soldier

I was browsing some of Jeff Cooper’s commentaries and found this which dovetails nicely with the current subject. Enjoy!

In studying into the background material for the forthcoming Babamkulu Enterprise in Africa next year, I have gone rather deeply into the two startling British reverses in 1881 at Laing’s Nek and Majuba Hill. (We plan to visit the sites next May.) These two incidents took place on adjoining terrain within three days of each other and point to lessons which should have been learned a century ago, but still have not got across to many people who should know about them.

Consider the “butcher’s bill.” At Laing’s Nek the British attacked a Boer defensive position at a crest of a saddle (nek is what we would call a saddle in the American West) with about 450 men, following a small but violent artillery preparation. They were repulsed with a loss of 150 dead – against 14 for the Boers. On the occasion immediately following, the British seized Majuba Hill by means of a night march involving something over 500 soldiers. In the morning, they were thrown off the hill by a Boer force of about the same size. In this action the British lost 280 dead, including their commanding general. The Boers lost one man, plus another who died some days later of his wounds.

Now, just what was going on here? This was a rifleman’s war, and the people on both sides used personal weapons of about the same character – breech loading single-shots using large-caliber black-powder cartridges rather similar to the American 45-70. In the first instance, the British were attacking and they were smashed. In the second instance, the British were defending and they were also smashed. Wherein lay the advantage? Odd as it may seem, it is my opinion that this tremendous disparity in efficiency derived from the fact that the British were soldiers and the Boers were civilians.

The British troupers were “soldiers of the Queen” from the Kipling period in India. They dressed well, marched well and did not lack for courage. What they did not do was shoot well. They were given pretty good guns and they were taught to load them, shoot them, and maintain them, more or less by the numbers, but being taught to shoot on the range in the military is not the same as being brought up with a rifle.

The Boers were by no means soldiers. They were pioneer farmers and the sons of farmers. They were reluctant to slaughter their own livestock when the countryside provided them with unlimited game. Their ammunition was always scarce and hard to come by. They had learned from childhood to hit what they shot at – every time. They shot to put meat on the table, and they shot on Sunday afternoons for prizes. Across the board, they may have been the finest body of marksmen ever fielded by any nation at any time. Their marksmanship was practical marksmanship, such as I have been endeavoring to teach throughout the latter half of my life. They seemed to have understood fully the basic rule of the rifleman, which is only hits count. (Funny how that principle was brought back to us from Grenada and Panama.)

The British had organization, discipline, resupply, signals and some artillery support. The Boers had their rifles, their horses, their biltong and their skill. They had no uniforms and they had only the vaguest sense of organization. The British regarded them as a bunch of uncouth, ignorant, illiterate peasants who could never stand up to the might of the British Empire.

And see the results! Using approximately equal weapons, the civilians shot the soldiers to pieces – on both offense and defense.

The lessons that ought to be learned here, I think, are three. First, men fight their very best when they fight to defend their homelands against a foreign invader. Second, when it comes to imparting of skill the public sector can never equal the private. Third, marksmanship is an art to be cultivated rather than a commodity to be issued.

And, just think of it, the British never complained to the media about being outgunned!

18
May
10

Pentagon: No More Counterinsurgency

A while back my 2014: The Exodus post got this comment DMM — you really think the U.S. Army / National Guard is gonna have much trouble with a few rednecks with guns? They’re been to Iraq and Afghanistan, and those guys have 10 x the training and 1/100th the fear of some dude who puts on a camouflage hat and thinks he’s a warrior.

Of course, I already knew the answer to that and the Elusive Wapiti just did a book review on 4th generation warfare that also somewhat addresses this issue. On Sunday I came across the following article stating “U.S. military strategists are quietly shifting gears, saying that large-scale counterinsurgency efforts cost too much and last too long. This is of course what the naysayers that don’t belong to the I-am-against-this-war-because-a-republican-is-executing-it crowd* have been saying regarding the ultimate fate of the engagements. The US simply doesn’t have the stomach for long, drawn-out engagements and we no longer have the financial wherewithal to do so, as also noted by this article.

The biggest spur, however, is a growing recognition that large-scale counterinsurgency battles have high casualty rates for troops and civilians, eat up equipment that must be replaced and rarely end in clear victory or defeat.

In addition, military thinkers say such wars have put the U.S.’s technologically advanced ground forces on the defensive while less sophisticated insurgent forces are able to remain on the offensive.

Counterinsurgency “is a good way to get out of a situation gone bad,” but it’s not the best way to use combat forces, said Andrew Exum, a fellow with the Washington-based Center for a New American Security. “I think everyone realizes counterinsurgency is a losing proposition for U.S. combat troops. I can’t imagine anyone would opt for this option.”

Of course, counterinsurgency was held forth as a sure thing during the Bush administration. The “surge” was lauded as the answer to the rising insurgency, and once the troops were in the arena we did indeed see a decrease in the violence. But continued heavy presence is not feasible fiscally, politically or strategically as it tends to increase the number of insurgents or those who are sympathetic to their cause. Further, more troops simply delay, not stop, acts of insurgency from occurring, and doesn’t change the “hearts and minds” of the people who still want to carry out such acts but who rationally decide its not worth the risk at the time.

In a confrontation with standard borders and forces the US military will easily quash their enemies in 3rd Gen Warfare as long as we have the money to prosecute a war, the financials of which is becoming ever shakier. But 4th Gen Warfare is a response to 3GW and is in ways superior to it. 4GW will never produce spectacular, overnight results. However, it can take numerous, even constant, defeats and still come out the victor by simply wearing down the will of its opponent to continue the fight. It does this by being malleable and being impossible to defeat in the types of head on confrontations that 3GW militaries excel in. 4GW troops simply melt away and back into the ranks of civilians which provides them both protection and anonymity. In contrast, 3GW militaries are marked by their rigidity and non-mobile bases which means they can be both identified and located reliably which the more mobile 4GW opponents use relentlessly against them.

So to answer Dan’s comment, yes, the most powerful military in the world does indeed have problems with a few rednecks with guns.

* It is interesting to note that the anti-war protesters are gone now that Obama is in office, despite no real change in what we are doing overseas

** I think its also worth noting that our military superiority almost ensures that the only actions our military will be tasked with are 4GW as there are only a few countries who could seriously think about challenging us, and not too many more if you figure an alliance of two nations

17
May
10

Blogroll

I finally got around to fixing the blogroll. If anyone has a preferred name you would like me to use just let me know.