March 31, 2014

And Now A Moment of "PEW! PEW! PEW!"

A working gauss gun.



OK, it doesn't penetrate the laptop screen, but the damage it does to the cans argues against shooting it in the apartment. I'm guessing it doesn't have much velocity but those long pellets might tumble quite effectively.

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March 30, 2014

And Now, A Moment of 'Splody

 While looking for something completely unrelated to all that stuff that's happening, I unwittingly blundered into this....






These are both brief but they are REALLY good clips of Upshot Grable, better known as the atomic cannon test. The second is from the film Trinity and Beyond. In general this particular test is known from a clip that was filmed near the cannon itself.  These short clips however, include footage from the hardened effects cameras in the target area. Note that while this is about the same size as the Hiroshima bomb, it has much greater blast effect over a smaller area. It was a very low airburst. Note too that the bomb is so much brighter than the sun that it gives the impression of a nighttime shot, whereas it was a daylight test as one can tell from the second clip.

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A Question For My Readers


Did anyone else interpret this post as a sincere anti-catholic screed?



'Cause...it came up.

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"I Tried to Put it all Behind Me...But They Kept Dragging Me Back In."

  On the face of it,  Love Chunibyo and Other Delusions is just a high school slice of life show, but this series possesses a dark secret. It's the tale of a young man trying to put his terrible, shameful past behind him and find happiness as a productive member of society. His quest for redemption is complicated by the fact that fandom is like the Mob, but without the benefit of Omerta.

Yuta Togashi is just starting out in High School. His goal is to be normal.
That's it...
You see, in Jr. High, Mr. Togashi was an imaginative young lad. Actually he was a geek, a fanboy...a RAVING Otaku who became legendary for his bonecrusshingly idiotic antics. He imagined himself to be "The Dark Flame Master" which was a fantasy personality that seems to have been based on a dreadfully cliched TV/ light novel series.
He's better now.
Looking to put his reputation as a complete addle-brained looser behind him he has enrolled in a high school that's a couple of counties removed from his apartment...which necessitates an exceedingly long commute.
He is able to do a pretty good job of passing as normal....




Unfortunately, he has a new neighbor, Rikka Takanashi, who is also in his homeroom, knows about his past and if anything is more delusional than he ever was. She seeks to enlist the Dark Flame Master into her crackerjack team of shortbus commandos who are looking to...chart the areas ley lines.




Rikka is at once obnoxious, pitiable and hilarious as she sets into motion a series of events that bring together a surprisingly well realized cast of characters in a show that is a rare and special kind of treat.  Love, Chunibyo and Other Delusions is masterfully well done. I found it not just funny but genuinely touching.  It has fully lived up to it's early promise.

This blog has 369 posts in the Fanboy Recidivism category, which probably represent 80-100 shows. This is one of the best.

It's still streaming on Crunchyroll for a time, but do note that Sentai it taking pre-orders for the show on DVD and Blue Ray.

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March 29, 2014

Kill-La-Kill Ends

They pretty much went through all the applicable tropes for the climax and cranked them up to 11. I do think it went on one episode too long,
Nevertheless, it is with profound shame and a great deal of rueful self examination that I must admit to having thoroughly enjoyed this show.


Unfortunately, standards and practices has informed us that any images from the final episode that are not spoilers would be inappropriate for the blog. So here is an utterly unrelated landscape by Kasi Takahisa.




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Jeremiah Denton 1924 - 2014

Jeremiah Denton passed away yesterday in Virginia Beach.

An Alabama native who put down deep roots in Hampton Roads, Jeremiah Denton served one term as a senator from his home state before returning to Virginia where he was a local fixture for many years.



A successful lawyer, a professor and political activist, he served as chairman of the presidential commission  on the merchant marine and founded a Christian charity (The National Forum Foundation) that lobbied successfully for welfare reform and assisted in humanitarian and peacekeeping endeavors throughout the world.

A lawyer politico and lobyist, if not for the faith based charity, that bio would have be the sort of life today's ruling class would aspire to.

However, Jeremiah Denton had other rather more august accomplishments that still get under the skin of a certain type of individual.


Navy Cross
Defense Distinguished Service Medal
Navy Distinguished Service Medal
Silver Star (3)
Distinguished Flying Cross
Bronze Star Medal (V)
Air Medal
Navy Commendation Medal (V)
Purple Heart
Combat Action Ribbon
Prisoner of War Medal

Jeremiah Denton was an accomplished naval aviator and commanded the US Navy's attack squadron VA-75 off of USS Independence. On 18 July 1965 he and his co-pilot were shot down over North Viet-Nam, Cdr. Denton was captured and placed in the P.O.W. camp known to American Servicemen as The Hanoi Hilton.

In 1966 he was forced to give a television interview. While parroting the propaganda that his sadistic captors instructed him to convey, he blinked...rather a lot.

In Morse Code to be precise.

 T-O-R-T-U-R-E


In this way he not only confirmed to US officials and the public that American Servicemen were being tortured, he earned himself "special"attention from his captors. Jeremiah Denton was one of the group of US officers who were known as the Alcatraz Gang, men who were especially defiant and were singled out for particular abuse. He endured this while helping his men maintain their morale for nearly 8 years.

Then, in 1973, after getting clobbered in yet another attempt to invade and conquer South Vietnam, the North Vietnamese signed the Paris Peace Accords.   As part of the Treaty the North Vietnamese swore to acknowledge South Vietnam's right to exist and US POWs including Denton, were released.

Jerimiah Denton, a after a period of recovery in Norfolk Naval Hospital, continued with his military career Commanding the Armed Forces Staff College and Pensacola Naval Airstation before retiring a Rear Admiral. He then proceeded to do all the other things mentioned above.

 In the meantime, while, the US signed a treaty to come to Saigons aid if the North invaded again, however, Congress passed the Case-Church Amendment which broke the treaty and deprived the Vietnamese of US Assistance. The Communists fell upon the South like wolves and killed over 500,000 people whose crime was believing the US would keep its word. Over the next several years other nations that depended upon US military assistance to fight off the communist onslaught Laos and Cambodia fell and became abattoirs....


Hippies get results.

This, however was not for any lack of courage or effort by Denton and his fellow servicemen.


The left of course never forgave him for his service and as recently as 2004 he was barred from speaking at Independence Day celebrations.  

Well, Jerimiah Denton, who faced hell for eight years is unlikely to have suffered much from those whose great moment of courage was avoiding service. He was a bit eccentric, but lived a full, good life and the Law Firm he and his son founded continues to serve the People of Virginia Beach. He lived his life in and out of service with considerable honor and we as a society are diminished by his loss.

One of the great ones has passed.

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March 27, 2014

Spitfire Needs a Caption


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March 25, 2014

This is Peculiar

There was a shooting this morning aboard USS Mahan.

A civilian approached the ship's quarterdeck and was confronted by ship security. A struggle ensued, and the civilian disarmed the petty officer of the watch. The suspect used that gun to fatally shoot a sailor who responded to help.

Naval security forces then killed the suspect, who did not have his own weapon, Davis said.


 


Having been on that base many times, in both a civilian and active duty capacity, the question that jumps out is not how but why.

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March 24, 2014

Suddenly

....Venice just voted to secede from Italy.


It's not just one very wet town either, it's a chunk of northern Italy that includes cities as big as Trieste and Trento.



The referendum was non binding, and is being dismissed by the Italian government, but 89% is a big enough share of the vote that the issue is not going away.

We in the US might arguably loose our status as the oldest existing republic...Venice was once an independent republic and was at one time an economic powerhouse that contributed greatly to the Renaissance. Its system of government was referenced in debates on the US constitution.Venice was probably the longest lived Republic in history, lasting 1100 years. The 200 odd years since its destruction by the Jacobins spans less than a tenth of the time it existed. In fact after the Napoleonic Wars the region fought for and eventually gained their independence from Austria Hungary and re-established the republic  (as San Marco) for 17 months only to have the area reconquered and later annexed by Italy.

Now the people of Northeastern Italy, fed up with Italian corruption and high taxes have held a referendum with 89% of the vote in favor of secession. The area has always been somewhat culturally distinct from the rest of Italy since its absorption.

Elsewhere in  Italy, Sardinia is also looking to secede but is going about it differently. They are not just attempting to leave Italy, they are petitioning to accede into Switzerland, pointing out that the 8 new cantons would bring with them BEACHES, which Switzerland rather lacks at the moment.


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March 23, 2014

It Occurs To Me

....that if Joss Wheadon did pr0n, the result would probably be much like Kill-La-Kill.


Of which this is a rather non-representative excerpt.

I'm hard pressed to think of any show I have felt so guilty about enjoying.

The fact that I'm enjoying it a great deal only adds to my nagging guilt.

However, I'm able to somewhat assuage my conscience as I am now pretty sure that this show is not actually pr0n. I base this assessment on the fact that I don't think the audience is supposed to stand up and cheer while watching pr0n.



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Log Horizon Ends (Sort Of)



Log Horizon has been fairly surprising all along and its ending was more so. It is not at all the sort of climax one would expect from a fantasy adventure show that has been steadily escalating, being instead something of a denouement to the epic tale that was the first 22 episodes.



There are quite a few major revelations not the least of which is that there will definitely be a season two in the fall.

This has been a very good series and I highly recommend it. As an added bonus, it has remained  quite kid friendly and as I said in an earlier post, if I had kids this is the sort of show I'd be wanting them to watch. It's a show about a bunch of decent people who display great courage, ethics, hope and even a decent sense of  civics. It portrays a world where intelligence is admirable, ones principles are important and experience (and study habits) really do matter.

It's also been fun.

The fall season is going to have at least one show to look forward to.
more...

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March 20, 2014

Why I Hate Pixar (Updated)




They're gonna do WHAT!?


A quick status update for those who follow such things.
more...

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It is Terribly Sad

...when someone becomes so consumed by the darker angels of their nature that after their passing they will be remembered for the pain they brought to others and the hatred they expressed.

I really have nothing else to say about the passing of Fred Phelps....except this.




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So..I Take It The Season's Really Been A Bust

I've been busy of late and. in any event. I am now only keeping up with 2 shows. Thus, when I got some free time this morning, I went to one of my preferred anime blogs to see what people are talking about now. The blog in question has a layout similar to this one in that there are comments previews in the sidebar. Reading them, I deduced that I was missing some fairly crucial context from the excerpts. Thus, I jumped into the current discussion which, to my dismay,  turned out to indeed be a bunch of adult men engaged in a spirited and erudite discussion of the societal implications and bio-mechanical specifics of non-consensual shota.





 "They were right THERE...why didn't I put the protective goggles ON!?"

If the term 'shota' means nothing to you, then congratulations! You are probably a good person!


If  it does, but only because you foolishly Googled it,  you most likely need a palate cleanser...which in this egregious case can actually be provided by politics of all things.



more...

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March 19, 2014

I'll Just Leave This Here





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Dentistry and Rocket Science are Completely Different....

...until suddenly they aren't.


Via


Some people are immediately going to contemplate passing some asinine ordinance to ban this.

The rest of us however....

"Why didn't WE get to do that as kids?"

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Two New RWBY Related Pics

This is pretty cool.



This is much cooler...



..however, the first one can be yours for $34.95 whereas the second can't actually be purchased as such and certainly requires considerable social skills, a sense of humor, good looks, similar interests, compatible belief systems, patience, integrity, discipline and a great deal of personal responsibility.

The choice is obvious...in part because we have no idea who the awesome cosplayer is and wouldn't ruin her life by posting contact info if we did.

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March 16, 2014

Happy St.Patrick's Day





Please get smashed responsibly.

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Meanwhile

While the plane continues to be missing and Russia annexes the Crimea, another crisis seems to be brewing in the Philippines.

Some years ago the Chinese set up a military outpost on and laid claim to "Mischief Reef', a tiny coral outcropping in the Spratley islands off the coast of one of the main Philippine islands (Palawan).




China then cartographically stuck it's tounge out at all its southern neighbors claiming pretty much the entire South China Sea and in particular the Spratelys are Chinese territory. 


The technical diplomatic term for this is "jackassery".


The Philippines, which is not exactly a world power, could not evict the squatters without risking war and so responded by setting up an outpost on another of the rocks to confirm their sovereignty. The outpost is the Philippine transport ship Sierra Madre which has been grounded on Aungin reef and is the Phillipinel government administrative office for the Spratelys.


This outpost would probably not be near the top of my duty requests.

The ship is now classified as a government building and is staffed mainly with marines to prevent the Chinese from running the Philippines off from their own island and assert that the islands are not relinquished.

Well, while everyone was distracted by stuff happening elsewhere, the Chinese blockaded the island and PLA warships drove off Philippine ships bringing supplies.

The Philippine Air Force is now air dropping supplies. All this comes just as the US and the Philippines are getting ready to conduct joint exercises in Palawan. 


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March 15, 2014

Well, THAT Narrows Things Down.

The likely location of the missing Malaysian 777 as estimated by satellite triangulation.



It looks like it was a skyjacking, but some information seems contradictory.
Turning off both the transponders does seem like a deliberate act.
On the other hand why have we not gotten a ransom demand, or had the plane flown into a building on the night of the highjacking?
A couple of possibilities come to mind.
*Whatever caused the mishap, the plane depressurized and was a flying coffin for its last hours.
*This was a heist: Something in the cargo hold was what the hijackers were after, diamonds, rubies, plutonium, Fogbank, or Episode 12 of Ultra7,  In this case the plane either crashed somewhere or was landed and the passengers likely liquidated.
* They are looking at using the plane for a mass casualty attack, either with a nuke (perhaps acquired from Saudi Arabia or Pakistan) or simply slamming it into a target 9-11 style. There are considerable logistical hurdles to this beyond putting a 777 down for refueling in an out of the way place. An airliner with no transponder is going to elicit considerable attention and this planes transponder will  likely be a missile magnet at this point. I Imagine that using it in this fashion would require (somehow) mimicking a known aircraftts transponder, destroying said aircraft and taking its place in the flight pattern with the identity of the exploded plane not established until the target had been hit. Likely targets would seem to be Tel-Aviv, Moscow, Beijing, and Vatican City, with hits on New York, Washington DC or Hampton Roads  even harder to pull off given the distance one would have to fly without raising concern.

Obviously, as I'm neither a pilot nor a Sky Ninja this is random speculation from publicly available sources. Thus those readers who are pilots or help to build these planes are particularly encouraged to comment and give this post less of a Dunning -Krugger flavor.

UPDATE: Fixed the graphic so it actually means something.

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