I hate training.

And I mostly hate training wet-behind-the-ears millenials who think they know more about my industry than I do after two decades plus.

Jesus.  I wish I could retire.

Kids today

I’ll tell ya…kids today. I just had two people come to work for me on Monday. One of them has already requested four weeks of unpaid leave between now and the middle of July.  The first two weeks will fuck up our training schedule (and unfortunately, HR knew about it before he was hired and nobody told me when I was making up the training schedule, so I couldn’t say no), and the second two weeks, although it’s after training is over, will probably mean we’ll have to recycle him for things he will have forgotten by then because he won’t have been on the job long enough to cement them in place.  I don’t know yet if HR knew about the second two weeks or not, so I don’t know if I have to approve them or not.  Given my druthers, I’d say no.  [ETA:  I misread HR’s note, and he did actually request the second two weeks when they hired him.  Damn it.]
Back in the day, if I’d pulled that, I’d have been flatly told, “no.”  What the hell is wrong with kids today?  This shows absolutely no commitment or responsibility to me.  You want a job that pays the big money, you toss your personal business to the side for awhile and commit.
Hell, the year I hired on, I felt odd about taking the week between Christmas and New Years to travel out of state to a fraternity conference only 6 weeks after I reported to work.  If I hadn’t planned to go and bought airline tickets and reserved a hotel room months before, I probably would have given it a pass.  Kids today apparently don’t even give it that much thought.


Yesterday I wrote a thousand words (for a total of 3,046 so far) on a time-travel story I’ve been thinking about since I woke up from a very vivid dream back in mid-April.  It’s a bit of a romance, too, which is outside of my normal métier.  Wait.  Who am I kidding?  It’s completely outside of my normal métier.

At the moment it’s not something I’d publish; I’d have to go through and make a LOT of changes, or publish it under a psuedonym.  Some of the events are too close to the reality I’ve lived over the past couple of years, and the backstory is too well-known to a number of my associates, some of whom I have no reason or desire to offend (and would, if this went out in its current form).  But it makes an interesting story, I think.  Lots of conversation, not so much action.  And I’ve got three different possibilities for ending it, which also is not normal for me; endings are hard.

If nothing else, at least I’m writing fiction again.

Democracy usually fails

Pure democracy, anyway.  Our Founding Fathers knew it; that’s why they created a Republic for us.  Little did they know we’d only take two centuries to fuck that up.

Anyway.  After reading comments on an article regarding the dustup between CBS/Paramount and the fans who are producing the “Axanar” spin-off Star Trek movie, I really do wonder if the Internet has done us any favors.  What would have been, pre-1994, a simple article in something like Variety (it used to be printed exclusively on newsprint, for those not old enough to remember) that might have been discussed a few days later on a Usenet newsgroup that practically nobody actually read, has in 2016 become an instant forum in which readers may projectile-vomit their undistilled raw thoughts about the article anonymously and without regard for what anyone else thinks.*  (Indeed, such microcephalic idiots generally operate without filters between ears, brain, and mouth even in real life conversations and other interactions.  Sometimes even those of us who do normally operate with those filters engaged nevertheless find ourselves issuing that kind of internet comment, too.  So sadly, it’s not just those with tiny brains** who succumb, suggesting that the problem is really the siren call of the medium beckoning one to yield to that blinking cursor, not simply the individual’s solipsistic need to assert that the universe does, in fact, revolve around himself and that his opinion actually has any worth to anyone but himself.***)

The thing I don’t understand is why it’s anyone’s business except that of the parties involved.  Why did this article need instant comments at all?  It’s a simple report of news.  You want to respond to it, write an email to the editor like we used to do back in the day (although generally we typed or hand-wrote it on paper, stuck it in an envelope with a stamp (remember those?) and threw it in the mailbox to be delivered sometime in the next couple of days).  If the editors liked it, they might even print it in the next issue, and might even respond to you, thanking you for your well- or not so well-reasoned arguments, and in the latter case, gently explaining why you were a fucking idiot who needed to be spoon-fed the Truth as handed down by your Betters.

Oh, and — if you wanted to be taken seriously, you wrote politely.  Even if you were pissed off.  Such was the Republic of News; it was serious, it was considered, it was grave, and it was polite, even when it excoriated local or national politicians for real or imagined sins.  And it had its gatekeepers.  If they didn’t like your tone, your letter went into the round file with that of other barbarians and kooks.

Today we have the great Democracy of the Unwashed who simply react reflexively rather than respond thoughtfully.  And that’s why the comments section of that article about Axanar — and the comments section of so many other articles — is something you read only if you have no care for your sanity.


* And often, without regard for correct grammar or orthography, either.

** Or small phalluses, but that’s really kind of beyond the pale, even for me.

*** Women also have this problem, but I’ll be damned if I’ll yield to political correctness and fuck up the flow of this post.

The hell?

It’s May 23.

A week before the Indy Classic.

And I had to turn the damn heat on this morning.  It was only down to 69 in the house, but damp…and my bones can’t take that anymore.

Global warming my ass.

Come and take them, you fascist harridan.

Shrillery keeps talking up the failed Australian gun grab as a model for the US.  Where gun grabbery fails every time it’s tried — for example, New York and Connecticut.

And all the Trumpettes start freaking out and hitting the gun stores, and buying up all the damn ammo.  Fuck.  I’m not in a position to buy 10K rounds of 9 right now, damn it.

But let’s face it.  There aren’t enough policemen or soldiers in the country to take away the 300 million guns we have scattered around — not without a fight, and they don’t want one (particularly not the soldiers; they’re not interested in shooting their own, they want to shoot American’s enemies.  Plus, all that posse comitatus shit). And most of them would look the other way under an Australian-type gun confiscation. This is not Australia — thank goodness.  Most of our cops can make the distinction between a legal gun owner protecting his property and his family, and a gang-banger out trying to make trouble with a firearm.

Plus, I keep reading articles where commentators keep making the point: If Obama had thought he could actually take our guns, he would have taken them in the first two years of his first term, when the Dems had total control. That he didn’t indicates that he recognizes the total impossibility of that happening. Instead, he’s been content to snipe around the edges and try to make gun ownership harder for good actors, by ignoring the fact that the vast, vast, VAST majority of gun crime is committed by…er…criminals.

Either Shrillery is completely bugnuts and really thinks she can do it, or this is just nothing but politics as usual from the gun-hating Democrats. Either way, I’m pretty sure confiscation ain’t happening — just like it didn’t happen in Australia (where the law was ignored to the extent that only about 20% of the weapons it covered were actually turned in), and didn’t happen in New York or Connecticut (where it’s estimated that even fewer gun owners complied). Analysis:  The American people will, by and large, ignore a stupid and unConstitutional law if passed, and nothing will happen to them.

I’m told that the Trump folks who hang out in gun shops are livid about this, but I discount that because they still don’t seem to recognize that Trump is a Democrat in Republican clothing. If they’d have gotten behind Cruz, they might have had a candidate who would actually protect their rights.  But what the hell do I know.

If man were meant to run, God would have given us shoes for feet.

The annual Indy 500 Mini Marathon was run today, and I had friends participating in it — both runners and ham operators who helped with course communications — and something occurred to me that made me laugh.

You’ve probably all seen the cartoon of the two guys running away from the bear, one in good shape and running like hell, the other one behind him rotund and puffing away…and being overtaken by the bear.  The caption generally reads something like, “I don’t have to run faster than the bear, I just have to run faster than you.”

And there are all these smug, self-satisfied X-gens and Millenials* who go out and run the course and put those annoying “26.2” and “13.1” ovals on the backs of their cars, as if to prove to the world that they actually could run to work and to the store but they choose to be lazy and drive like the rest of us.

It seems to me that, once we dropped down from the trees and migrated out of Hell, er, Africa, and developed civilization and gunpowder and standoff-distance arms and the automobile — or even just the goddamn spur — there was no more fucking need to run.  Stand your fucking ground, kill or be killed.  Retreat in good order while covering your rear with the standoff weapons.  Do route marches in training to make you tough (and because you might have to march to the objective and march back).

But bottom line, the guy who ran from Marathon to Athens to deliver a fucking message and then dropped dead on the spot — there was a goddamn idiot.  Was he running to request reinforcements, or more arrows, or some important military need?  No, the dumb shit was running to tell the Athenians that they’d won the battle.  Hell’s jingling bells!  He could have WALKED.  He could have JOGGED.  He could have ridden a damn horse or a donkey.  But no, he fucking RAN, because he had the biggest scoop in years.  (I’m actually surprised he isn’t the patron saint of war reporters.)

To me, running a marathon in this day and age is ridiculous.  If you have to run from it, you should have been armed and you should have fucking killed it.  Thus I think this is a much more appropriate oval automobile sticker (although you may and no doubt will quibble about your particular favorite calibre):


I don’t have to run faster than the bear.  I just have to have the correct calibre for him.  (Which would probably be .45-70, if I were bear hunting.  Which I don’t do.  I like living.)


* Why the fuck is there no spell-checker anywhere on the Internet that accepts “millenials” as a correctly-spelled word?  I smell conspiracy.

A pig may be a rat may be a boy, but a woman isn’t a man.

And vive la différence.

So now that women have achieved equality, and are being allowed to join front-line combat units, they want the draft abolished so they don’t have to sign up for Selective Service.

Tough titty, ladies.  And I say that as someone who, by simple accident of birth, beat the cutoff for mandatory registration by 34 days.  And no, I didn’t volunteer to do so anyway.  I had cousins who served in Vietnam.  No thank you.  (And thank all of you who served there, and in the sandbox and other places in more recent years.  You are my heroes.)  For any male citizen born on or after 1 Jan 1960, though, it’s a requirement, and I know plenty of guys who grumbled but stepped up and did it anyway.  And yeah, there hasn’t been a draft since 1973 — but that was 4 years too close for comfort for me.  It really was a thing I worried about as a kid.  I would have gone, because my father and his brothers and my older cousins did.  But it wasn’t high on the list of things I wanted to do with my life.

I don’t support abolishing the Selective Service requirement because, upon mature reflection (and some historical background picked up along the way), I think it was a wise decision to maintain the database even in peacetime, because with modern warfare, a war could start and be nearly decided before we could gather the data from various other databases to start the draft.  I am no great supporter of conscription, but when you need an army in a hurry — as we did in WWII — even Robert Heinlein, I think, would have to agree to its utility.1

But to go back to the original point of this post:  You can call me a reactionary misogynist all you want, but we lost something when men stopped being men and women took their place.  We should NOT be placing women in harm’s way.  That is immoral and unethical and a damn fucking shame.2  Put bluntly, you don’t put your breeders on the front lines — and I’m sorry if there are women out there who don’t see it that way, because if you don’t, you also don’t understand how civilizations propagate themselves.

From a numerical standpoint, this country does not need its women to serve in combat.3  But if they want that right, they need to face up to the responsibilities, too, including registering when they turn 18.  Otherwise quit yelling about going into combat alongside the men (and there are LOTS of reasons — other than not putting your breeders into the front lines — as to why that’s a bad idea, anyway).


1 Although Heinlein would probably take the attitude that, in a truly righteous war supported by a patriotic nation, the country would not need conscription.  A hundred years ago and 75 years ago I would have agreed.  Today I am not so sure.

2 Hell, I’m not even happy that Israel lets them into the IDF, but I’ll give them a pass because they need the numbers.

3 No, it needs its nancy-boy child-men4 to man up and do it.  But good luck with that.  Proggy feminist women have beaten the spine out of most of the current eligible generation.  This is one reason I would strongly support a mandatory 2 year term of service, post-high school, for every boy and girl in the US.  Yes, as a matter of fact, I have read Starship Troopers.  We can find a place for everyone, which by the way IS something the IDF does that I like.

4 To my point…

So lemme get this straight.

You’ve now got a choice of a Hugo Chavez, a Mussolini Lite, and a lying crook — or none of the above.

“Grumpaw, so which rooftop polling place did you vote from in 2016?”

I stand with the Constitution.

John Adams: Tell me, Mr. Thomson, out of curiosity. Do you stand with Mr. Dickinson, or do you stand with me?

Thomson: I stand with the General. Well, lately, I’ve had the oddest feeling that he’s been writing to me.

Thomson: [reading from Washington’s letter] I have been in expectation of receiving a reply on the subject of my last fifteen dispatches. Is anybody there? Does anybody care? Does anybody care?

I can no longer in good conscience support any candidate from either of the two major parties.  I will vote in November, but I will cast a ballot only for Libertarian candidates.

Some think this means I’ve become a Libertarian.  Not the case.  I am a surly conservative independent curmudgeon, I do not affiliate with any political party.  It is true that I have long associated myself with the GOP because they were the last, best hope for the Republic.

No more.

I will vote for Libertarians, not because I expect them to win, or because I think they actually plan if elected to put in motion the philosophies they espouse, but because I protest the fact that the GOP and the Democrats have become nothing more than centers of political power, their elected officials more interested in private power and gain than in the welfare of the American citizens whom they claim to serve.  Both parties are filled to the brim with traitors and thieves, propping themselves up with pelf wrested from the citizenry by force (or by threat of force).  Indeed, there do not seem to be any true divisions between the two parties anymore, as they are more interested in their phoney baloney jobs and the society of their friends and fellow traitors on both sides of the aisle than they are in returning to the plow, Cincinnatus-like, and the society of the Great Unwashed who put them where they are.  Panem et circenses is their watchword to perpetuation in office; and when nearly half of Americans pay no taxes and live off of government handouts, and yet still have a vote in who represents them in Congress, it is clear that we are headed down that same path trod by Romans before us.

To this, I say, bah.  We are better than that.  At least some of us are.

The gauntlet has been thrown down, America, by those who consider themselves your betters.  What are you going to do about it?  Do you stand with those who would control you, and put chains on you?  Or do you stand with the Constitution?

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