Monsoon Season

July 20th, 2017

We moved to Tucson in January. The weather was cold at the time and I have seen it snow in downtown Tucson in January. I used to come over here to play golf in past years, one reason I eventually decided to move here permanently. The weather 9 months of the year is delightful. Even January warms up in the day to around 70 and I have been here to play golf when we had to wait for early tee times for the frost to melt on the greens.

Summer is hot but I told Jill it never got over 105 in my experience with Tucson. This year made me look bad as we had a couple of weeks of 115 in mid day. Finally, Monsoon Season got here and the heat is well down. Humidity is up to 65% but it is not oppressive like it used to be in Chicago, where I grew up. July 15 is the beginning although the local papers said it was expected earlier. My theory is that it is related to Mexican hurricane season which begins about now. The first Mexican hurricane of the season was “Dora”
and stayed in the Pacific.

Dora’s center will remain well off the Mexican coast, and will begin weakening soon. That was June 26.

About two weeks ago, we began to see afternoon thunderstorms arising to the northwest and sweeping to the south of us. The first real rain came a day or so after July 10 when I took this photo on our walk.

July 10

It did not rain that day but it was close.

The next day, July 11, early in the morning, we had a big thunderstorm with lots of lightning and thunder nearby. I had to leave for work at 4 AM and stopped at a gas station to get gas but the power pole across the street had been hit by lightning and the pumps were out. I finally got gas at another station but the low pressure warning light came on my dashboard and the last time that happened, I had a nail in a tire.

Not wanting to try to change a tire in the rain half-way to Phoenix, I called and cancelled out of work and went home. I went to the tire store about 9 and they found the valve stem in that tire was leaking so it was just as well I quit.

The next few days followed the same pattern and we have had a thunderstorm every afternoon for a week.

Thunderstorm1

Last weekend, a group of people from south of Phoenix went swimming in a “swimming hole” in the national forest east of Phoenix and north of Tucson. We had had flash flood warnings all week. Streets in Tucson often dip into dry “washes” and each has a sign, “Do not enter if flooded.”

Anyway, 9 people are dead and one is not yet found. In Monsoon Season stay out of canyons and stream beds.

Rainbow

We even had a rainbow last week.

Sunset

The storms are over by sunset and Juliet and I can usually take a walk just before dark.

Sunseteast716

This is what the sky about 2 PM looks like every day. I expect this will go on into August, when in my previous experience here, the real heavy rain comes. I have seen the river over its banks and the swimming pool overflowing.

Internal Secession ?

July 15th, 2017

The Trump Derangement Syndrome shows no sign of stopping. The alleged meeting between Russians and Donald Trump Jr is reaching a new level of fever.

The anti-Trump mainstream media is buzzing with news that Rinat Akhmetshin, a Russian American lobbyist and veteran of the Soviet military, attended the June 2016 meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya.

Rosalind Helderman and Tom Hamburger of the Washington Post insist that Akhmetshin’s presence “adds to the potential seriousness of the Trump Tower gathering that is emerging this week as the clearest evidence so far of interactions between Trump campaign officials and Russian interests.” I think they mean the only evidence.

But now does the attendance of this lobbyist add to the “potential seriousness” of the “gathering”? If it was inappropriate for Trump Jr. to meet with one Russian lobbyist with probable Kremlin connections, the attendance of a second doesn’t make the meeting more inappropriate.

The hysteria shows no sign of abating. What comes next ?

“Resist” marches all over the country bring out thousands of leftists and feminists.

Tens of thousands of LGBTQ folk and their allies marched through Hollywood and West Hollywood on Sunday for the Resist March, a protest which this year replaced the colorful and over-the-top celebratory atmosphere of a Pride parade.

The event was billed as non-partisan, but unmistakeable was the heavy presence of marchers bearing anti-Trump signs, speakers decrying the administration’s immigration, healthcare and civil rights policies, and Democrats calling for a burst of activism to channel into the 2018 elections.

Richard Fernandez has some thoughts on where this might go.

Internal secession.

Our trust hierarchies have collapsed. As with Soviet Russia, the “official” media sources are now distrusted as purveyors “fake news”. To fill the gap a peer-to-peer grapevine, similar to the “friends and family”, a samizdat is emerging to pick up the slack. Sonya Mann at Inc uses a startup to illustrate the growing division of society into trust groups. “Pax Dickinson wants to fund the revolution. Not a blood-in-the-streets revolution, but one where hardcore right-wingers can economically secede from the parts of society they vehemently dislike. “We need parallel everything. I do not want to ever have to spend a single dollar at a non-movement business.”

That’s the right, the alt-right if you prefer.

The left has already shown their willingness to boycott any business that does not follow their script.

Ask Brenden Eich.

Brendan Eich recently stepped down as CEO of Mozilla, developer of the Firefox Web browser. It may be more accurate to say he was forced out in the wake of a rising boycott against him. The backlash against Eich is related to his position on gay rights, but many feel that the campaign against him is its own form of discrimination and intolerance.

His crime was to quietly donate $1000 to the Proposition Eight ballet initiative, which resulted in over 7 million yes votes and a 60% margin of approval. The proposition was ruled unconstitutional by a federal judge who promptly married his gay lover.

California’s AG declined to appeal his ruling. That’s a pretty effective boycott.

Read the rest of this entry »

What to do about North Korea.

July 5th, 2017

The North Koreans launched a new two stage missile, which signals more escalation of their part.

The two-stage missile launched Tuesday by North Korea will be classified by US intelligence as a brand-new missile that has not been seen before, US officials told CNN.

The first stage of the missile is believed to be a KN-17 liquid fueled missile, which is well-known to US intelligence and has been previously launched by North Korea.

Ahead of Tuesday’s missile test, US satellites had seen evidence the KN-17 missile was being prepared for launch.
But at some point prior to launch, the North Koreans attached a second stage atop that missile.
The focus now is on the capability of that second stage, and how it technically contributed to making Pyongyang’s latest test its first ever intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) launch.

The next step will be the development of a solid fuel missile which could be launched with little warning.

NK launch

The trajectory was high and short but the second stage could be programmed to go much longer range.

It is apparent that the US policy going back to Bill Clinton and his “Deal” to stop the Norks nuclear program, has been a complete failure, like so many of Clinton’s deals.

On Oct. 18, 1994, Clinton approved a plan to arrange more than $4 billion in energy aid to North Korea over the course of a decade, in return for a commitment from the country’s Communist leadership to freeze and gradually dismantle its nuclear weapons development program, according to The New York Times.

The “complex” deal was to de-escalate the situation on the Korean peninsula, where the two Korean nations never negotiated a peace treaty after the Korean War ended in armistice in 1953.

“This agreement is good for the United States, good for our allies, and good for the safety of the entire world,” said Clinton in 1994. “It’s a crucial step toward drawing North Korea into the global community.

The drawing-in never happened.

I can only imagine what Hillary Clinton would do if she were President. The mind boggles at the thought.

Read the rest of this entry »

How to deal with Muslim terrorism in the West.

June 5th, 2017

Terrorism struck in London last Saturday night and PM Theresa May says, “Enough is enough “

Does she mean it ? Probably but that does not mean anything useful will be done.
Two thirds of British Muslims would not report a plot to police.

The same poll revealed that over half of all British Muslims think homosexuality, the very act of gay sex, should be illegal in Britain. Another 23% want to tear down British common law and replace it with Islamic Sharia. Moreover, 39% believe that wives should always, without exception, obey the commands of their husbands; 31% of Muslim also believed that men (not women of course) should be legally permitted to practice polygamy and marry more than one wife.

That doesn’t sound like assimilation. How about America ?

Minnesota Somalis sound pretty much the same.

‘Is it right to kill someone who insults the prophet?’

“Yes,” said the bearded man with the animated personality. “Because when you, every day you face frustration. And you know, every day you have, uh, you’re mad, or somebody says that, and you feel hate your soul. You could do anything you wanted. If you committed suicide, you don’t care, because your heart, your heart is telling you, ‘I don’t want to live no more,’ because you couldn’t take that much hate. Or you, you kill someone.”

It’s not just Somalis.

The Center for Security Policy released a poll Tuesday that should give all Americans pause. The results show that a startling number of American Muslims, our fellow citizens, agree that violence is a legitimate response to those who insult Islam. A full majority of 51% “agreed that “Muslims in America should have the choice of being governed according to shariah.”

According to the just-released survey of Muslims, a majority (51%) agreed that “Muslims in America should have the choice of being governed according to shariah.” When that question was put to the broader U.S. population, the overwhelming majority held that shariah should not displace the U.S. Constitution (86% to 2%). …

Even more troubling, is the fact that nearly a quarter of the Muslims polled believed that, “It is legitimate to use violence to punish those who give offense to Islam by, for example, portraying the prophet Mohammed.”

A full 25% of those polled agreed that “violence against Americans here in the United States can be justified as part of the global jihad.”

What do we do with this ?

Spengler (David Goldman) has some suggestions.

Sherman and Sheridan suppressed sniping at Union soldiers by Confederate civilians by burning the towns (just the towns, not the townsfolk) that sheltered them. In other words, they forced collective responsibility upon a hostile population, a doctrine that in peacetime is entirely repugnant, but that in wartime becomes unavoidable.

I have read a lot about Sherman and his way of dealing with a hostile population was hang snipers and burn the villages that supported them.

Collective punishment has gotten a bad reputation from the Germans in World War I and World War II. They would round up innocent civilians and execute them to punish guerilla attacks in the area. I am not advocating anything like that.

Israel demolishes the homes of terrorists.

“The police are going deeply into the Arab neighborhoods [in Jerusalem], which has not been done in the past,” he said. “We will demolish terrorists’ homes. We are allowing our forces to take strong action against those who throw rocks and firebombs. This is necessary in order to safeguard the security of Israeli citizens on the roads and everywhere.”

Palestinians may consider children expendable but houses are more precious. How would we implement such a policy ?

Many mosques have been used to store weapons and plan attacks.

This is certainly the case in Israel.

The 38-page report includes photographic evidence of weapons being stored under pulpits and elsewhere in mosques during December and January’s Operation Cast Lead in Gaza. It notes that Israeli troops fighting Hizballah in Lebanon, U.S. troops fighting terrorists in Iraq and even Palestinian Authority officials in the West Bank have encountered similar practices.

How about in the US ? Mosques have been shown to teach violent extremism.

The mosques in the US are largely funded by the Saudis which promote the Wahhabi extreme version of Islam.

Firm figures are elusive, but estimates are that the Saudis fund up to 80% of American mosques, at least in part. And their goal is the same here as it is elsewhere in the world where Islam must compete with other religions: to prevent Muslims from integrating into the host society.

If a terrorist is shown to have attended a mosque, that mosque should be closed.

The terrorists are also winning a psychological war in Europe. They identify police informants and force them to become suicide bombers. That is why so many are “Known Wolves.”

These attacks, in other words, are designed to impress the Muslim public as much as they are intended to horrify the western public. In so many words, the terrorists tell Muslims that western police agencies cannot protect them. If they cooperate with the police they will be found out and punished. The West fears the power of Islam: it evinces such fear by praising Islam as a religion of peace, by squelching dissent in the name of fighting supposed Islamophobia, and by offering concessions and apologies to Muslims.

Demolishing or closing some homes and a few mosques might signal more resolution than speeches by politicians. Deporting a few families would also be salutary.

Seth Rich story is getting bizarre.

May 22nd, 2017

I am starting to see accounts that are pretty bizarre about what happened with DNC staffer Seth Rich.

4th year surgery resident here who rotated at WHC (Washington Hospital Center) last year, it won’t be hard to identify me but I feel that I shouldn’t stay silent.

Seth Rich was shot twice, with 3 total gunshot wounds (entry and exit, and entry). He was taken to the OR emergently where we performed an exlap and found a small injury to segment 3 of the liver which was packed and several small bowel injuries (pretty common for gunshots to the back exiting the abdomen) which we resected ~12cm of bowel and left him in discontinuity (didn’t hook everything back up) with the intent of performing a washout in the morning. He did not have any major vascular injuries otherwise. I’ve seen dozens of worse cases than this which survived and nothing about his injuries suggested to me that he’d sustained a fatal wound.

I’ve cared for thousands of gunshot wounds and abdomen wounds, unless the patient bleeds out in the OR or has a colon blowout wound, should survive. Is this account true ? I don’t know.

In the meantime he was transferred to the ICU and transfused 2 units of blood when his post-surgery crit came back ~20. He was stable and not on any pressors, and it seemed pretty routine. About 8 hours after he arrived we were swarmed by LEOs and pretty much everyone except the attending and a few nurses was kicked out of the ICU (disallowing visiting hours -normally every odd hour, eg 1am, 3am, etc- is not something we do routinely). It was weird as hell. At turnover that morning we were instructed not to round on the VIP that came in last night (that’s exactly what the attending said, and no one except for me and another resident had any idea who he was talking about).

This is where it gets really weird.

Now there is more on a related topic. The murder investigation may be creating panic in some quarters.

“Anons, I work in D.C.

I know for certain that the Seth Rich case has scared the shit out of certain high ranking current and former Democratic Party officials.

This is the reason why they have backed away from impeachment talk. They know the smoking gun is out there, and they’re terrified you will find it, because when you do it will bring the entire DNC, along with a couple of very big name politicians.

It appears that certain DNC thugs were not thorough enough when it came time to cover their tracks. Podesta saying he wanted to “make an example of the leaker” is a huge smoking gun.”

I have no idea where this is going but it sounds interesting.

Among other things, what happened to his laptop ?

There are several versions of whether this is evidence that Rich was connected to Wikileaks.

Rod Wheeler, a private investigator hired by the Rich family, suggests there is tangible evidence on Rich’s laptop that confirms he was communicating with WikiLeaks prior to his death. Wheeler’s services were offered to the family and paid for by a third party, according to a statement issued by the Rich family Tuesday which also includes that “the private investigator who spoke to press was offered to the Rich family and paid for by a third party, and contractually was barred from speaking to press or anyone outside of law enforcement or the family unless explicitly authorized by the family.”

Now the family is changing the tune.

When asked if Wheeler is still working for Seth Rich’s family, Wheeler told FOX 5 DC the contract still stands– ties have not been severed.

We reached out once again to the Rich family, and through a spokesperson the Rich family tells FOX 5 DC, “The family has relayed their deep disappointment with Rod Wheeler’s conduct over the last 48 hours, and is exploring legal avenues to the family.”

Was that a denial ? Stay tuned.

The Slow Motion Coup d’Etat.

May 20th, 2017

The news now is 99% Trump 24 hours per day. 97% of it is bad or negative on Trump.

Analysis: Only 3 percent of reports on CBS, NBC positive for Trump

A new analysis by a nonpartisan media research firm shows that just 3 percent of the reports about President Trump that aired on NBC and CBS were deemed positive.

The data comes from an analysis by Media Tenor, an independent media research firm founded in 1993.

The firm’s analysts watched 370 news stories about Trump on the “NBC Nightly News,” “CBS Evening News” and Fox News’s “Special Report” between Jan. 20 and Feb. 17. Trump took office the day the analysis began.

Overall the analysis found that on NBC and CBS, 43 percent of stories on Trump were negative, while only 3 percent were positive. Fifty-four percent of reports were considered neutral.

I’m not sure I would agree on what is “neutral.”

I am not the only one who thinks a coup d’etat is under way.

Spengler, who is my #2 go to guy after Fernandez,
thinks what is going on is a coup attempt.

A ranking Republican statesman this week told an off-the-record gathering that a “coup” attempt was in progress against President Donald Trump, with collusion between the largely Democratic media and Trump’s numerous enemies in the Republican Party. The object of the coup, the Republican leader added, was not impeachment, but the recruitment of a critical mass of Republican senators and congressmen to the claim that Trump was “unfit” for office and to force his resignation. Read the rest of this entry »

What’s going on with Comey ?

May 3rd, 2017

FBI Director Comey has been front and center in the politics of the USA the past year.

UPDATE: Well we now know what was going on with him.

I wouldn’t really call it “Outrage,” just lunacy of the type we have gotten used to since last November.

“In a word, they see him as their voice,” said Frank Luntz, the Republican consultant and pollster. “And when their voice is shouted down, disrespected or simply ignored, that is an attack on them, not just an attack on Trump.”

First, it was
the left heavy breathing about his costing her the election.

He served as special counsel to former President Clinton from 1996 to 1998 and is a regular columnist for The Hill newspaper. He has been a friend of Hillary Clinton since they were students at Yale Law School together in 1969 and 1970.

That explains that rant about Comey.

First, he announced that Hillary would not be indicted or prosecuted.

In our system, the prosecutors make the decisions about whether charges are appropriate based on evidence the FBI has helped collect. Although we don’t normally make public our recommendations to the prosecutors, we frequently make recommendations and engage in productive conversations with prosecutors about what resolution may be appropriate, given the evidence. In this case, given the importance of the matter, I think unusual transparency is in order.

Although there is evidence of potential violations of the statutes regarding the handling of classified information, our judgment is that no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case.

That was a dodge and he later explained a bit.

He explained to a skeptical nation that the Bill Clinton and Loretta Lynch meeting in Phoenix was the problem.

“A number of things had gone on which I can’t talk about yet, that made me worry that the department leadership could not credibly complete the investigation and decline prosecution without grievous damage to the American people’s confidence in the justice system,” Comey said, testifying before the Senate judiciary committee.
“And then the capper was — and I’m not picking on the attorney general, Loretta Lynch, who I like very much — but her meeting with President Clinton on that airplane was the capper for me, and I then said, you know what, the department cannot, by itself, credibly end this,” he added.

No kidding !

Read the rest of this entry »

The riot at Middlebury College over Charles Murray.

April 1st, 2017

Recently, Charles Murray, author of the book, “The Bell Curve,” a study of intelligence in the population, was invited to speak at Middlebury college, a liberal arts college in Vermont. His attempt to speak was interrupted by a riot which injured a professor at the college.

Inside Higher Ed’s story on the event explains that college officials admonished the students prior to the talk that they could protest but not disrupt Murray’s talk, which was to be about the way white America is coming apart—the title of his latest book—along class lines. Unfortunately, that admonition did no good. “As soon as Murray took the stage,” we read, “students stood up, turned their backs to him and started various chants that were loud enough and in unison such that he could not talk over them.

The confrontation continued after he had left the stage and attempted to move to another location.

And then matters turned worse. Fearing that there might be a raucous, disruptive mob instead of an audience of students willing to listen and consider Murray’s arguments, school administrators had set up a contingency plan. Once it became clear that the mob had killed the lecture, they moved to another location where Murray would give his talk, which would be live-streamed to students.

Sadly, that location was soon beset by the mob, with banging on windows and pulling of fire alarms. Murray and Professor Allison Stanger, who was the moderator for the talk, tried their best to continue a rational discussion.

Finally, Murray, Professor Stanger, and a few others tried to leave campus.

Mayhem resulted when Professor Stanger, who had been willing to state her agreement that Murray should not have been invited, was injured.

Why did this happen ? Tribalism ?

Read the rest of this entry »

An interesting theory for Muslim immigration.l

March 23rd, 2017

I have been wondering why the political left, and to some extent the right, has been so enthusiastic about Muslim immigration. Islam is just not compatible with the liberal traditions of the West. So why the continued efforts to import Muslims ?

Here is a novel theory.

There’s no economic argument for importing Syrians or Turks. Muslims are overwhelmingly represented on the welfare roles. In Denmark, people from MENA countries make up 5% of the population, but consume 40% of welfare benefits. This is a story across Europe. It is not just the new arrivals. Turks in Germany have been there for a couple of generations and have been the worst performing economic group in the country. Estimates put the total working population at 20%, while the rest live off welfare benefits. Then there is the issue of sky high Muslim crime rates.

The incident in London yesterday made clear that assimilation is not going to solve the problem. The terrorist was British born. Most of the sexual abusers in Rotherham were British born to Muslim immigrants.

In September 2012, investigations by The Times based on confidential police and social services documents, found that abuse had been much more widespread than acknowledged.[24][25] It uncovered systematic sexual abuse of white girls by British Asian men (mostly of Pakistani origin)[26] in Rotherham for which people were not being prosecuted.

Not only were they not being prosecuted but the British authorities had been covering up the abuse for years Why ?

Is there popular support for importing these people, despite their uselessness as citizens? Again, there’s no data to suggest this is the case. European leaders could have put the issue to the voters, but they fanatically avoid it. In fact, anyone who dares run on the issue is branded a Nazi. Politicians love democracy when they are assured of winning. They avoid it when they are assured of losing. Therefore, it is safe to assume they don’t think this is a winner for them.

So, the politicians seem to favor the immigrants over their own citizens. Why ?

Read the rest of this entry »

Our street and the dog walks I do.

March 8th, 2017

The new house in Tucson is located in a pretty spot in the Catalina foothills.

I walk the dog most evenings especially as it is now starting to warm up.

house-view-west

The west view from our house shows how much of the area here is open space.

Our street and Juliet,

The sunsets are spectacular, even from street level.

Ocotillo sunset

We have huge Ocotillo cactuses on the property which are just starting to leaf out and bloom.

our street

The view to the east shows the mountains.