Mar 31, 2014
This is strange.
You won’t guess the ending of this commercial.
Mar 30, 2014
“Social Justice” is a term that you hear a great deal these days. For a term that is used quite a bit, there is seldom a concrete definition meaning is difficult to discuss or debate the topic. After all, how can you talk about something that is not defined?
Jonah Goldberg of the American Enterprise Institute asks “what is ‘social justice’?” and then tries to answer the question.
Jonah Goldberg of the American Enterprise Institute tries to pin this catchall phrase to the wall. In doing so, he exposes the not-so-hidden agenda of those who use it. What sounds so caring and noble turns out to be something very different.
Mar 29, 2014
The story of Washington D.C. resident Mark Witaschek goes back to the summer of 2012. Emily Miller of the Washington Post gives a brief history:
Mr. Witaschek, a successful financial adviser with no criminal history, is the first known case of a citizen being prosecuted in D.C. for inoperable ammunition. Washington police and prosecutors have spent a year and a half trying to nail him for the possession of so-called unregistered ammunition.
A hunter and gun owner, Mr. Witaschek has always kept his firearms at his sister’s house in Virginia. If convicted, he
faces a year in jail and a $1,000 fine for having a single, inoperable shotgun shell in his home. The jury trial starts on Feb. 11.
The Metropolitan Police Department raided Mr. Witaschek’s rented Georgetown house twice in the summer of 2012 on the word of his angry ex-wife.
The first raid was done without a proper search warrant. The police found a box of rifle cartridges found in a closet but because the search was illegal, as evidence the box of cartridges was thrown out.
The police returned for a second search and this time, armed with a warrant, they found an antique Colt revolver (which is legal in the District of Columbia,) a holster (also legal), a shotgun shell that had misfired and was inoperable, and a box of muzzle loading sabots.
Sabots are plastic covers that make it easier to push the bullet into a muzzleloader gun. There is no propellent on the bullet or sabot — because the gunpowder is separated — so it is not clear that it can be categorized as ammunition and thus only registered gun owners can possess it.
The 12 gauge shotgun shell was a remnant of a hunt in which Witaschek had participated. At trial, Witaschek was put on the stand:
Defense attorney Howard X. McEachern asked his client to explain how he came to have a shotgun shell on his desk
at his home in Georgetown. Mr. Witaschek explained that he kept the shotgun shell as a “souvenir” from a hunting trip in southern Virginia with friends in 2006.
He said that as a deer approached, “I raised the shotgun, took aim, fired and nothing happened.” He looked up and saw the deer run straight into a tree.
Mar 28, 2014
United States Senate Leader Harry Read
(click for larger image)
(D-Nevada) is in a bit of trouble concerning some campaign spending that went to his grand daughter.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid sent nearly $17,000 in campaign funds to his granddaughter, and disclosed their relationship only under pressure from the Federal Election Commission, it was reported Wednesday.
The checks went to “Ryan Elisabeth” — but Reid’s office didn’t initially disclose that the recipient was Ryan Elisabeth Reid, the 23-year-old daughter of his son, Rory.
When first contacted by Las Vegas journalist Jon Ralston, Reid’s office said Ryan Elisabeth was a campaign vendor — without acknowledging she was Reid’s granddaughter.
Reid’s aides later said the payments were for purchases from her Berkeley, Calif., jewelry business and that the items went to campaign donors.
The FEC wrote the Nevada Democrat’s campaign last week reminding him that campaign disbursements “must include a brief statement or description” of why they were made and seeking clarification. It said a failure to adequately respond by late April “could result in an audit or enforcement action.”
It seems a bit odd to us that the checks were written out to “Ryan Elizabeth,” omitting her last name which would have raised more of a red flag, but hey, people make mistakes.
As might be expected, people started contacting the granddaughter which has angered Reid:
In a statement first sent to Nevada reporters on Wednesday, Reid says his granddaughter “has been the target of harassing phone calls, strangers tracking her down and knocking on her door, and negative, unwanted attention on the Internet” since news of the payments from Reid’s campaign widely broke earlier this week.
Mar 28, 2014
This week was the 70th anniversary of the “Great Escape” where British officers tried to escape from German Prisoner of War Camp Luft Stalag III. The event was made into a famous movie starring Steve McQueen, James Garner and Richard Attenborough, but as is the case in most movies, the truth is more compelling than the Hollywood version.
In 1943, under the leadership of Squadron Leader Roger Bushell, known as Big X, the prisoners started digging three large tunnels known as ‘Tom’, ‘Dick’ and ‘Harry’, all emanating from huts in the compound. The tunnels were 30ft deep in an attempt to avoid German detection and were designed to run more than 300ft into woods outside the camp.
The prisoners begged, borrowed and stole equipment that enabled them to line the tunnels with wood, run a railway and electric lighting from entry to exit and ventilate the tunnels with primitive air conditioning. They also made civilian clothes, maps, compasses and German passes to help them escape.
According to German accounts after the escape, the materials missing from the camp included:
Mar 27, 2014
“The Home Depot, Syringes, and Guns” are three things that we never would have imagined would be combined in a post, but there are a lot of things we never imagined when we help start Raised on Hoecakes.
The three things are brought together courtesy of one Joshua Joseph Silva who decided to take it upon himself to visit The Home Depot in Detroit. Silva had an interest in a drill he saw in the store. His interest was not that he needed the drill to, you know, make a hole with something, but rather to steal it.
Silva is an admitted heroin addict whose shoplifting was noticed by store security who were dressed in plain clothes.
What happened next is what makes this story interesting.
Roseville Police Chief James Berlin said Silva, an admitted heroin-addict, was caught attempting to steal a drill Monday afternoon from a Home Depot near 13 Mile and Little Mack.
When loss prevention agents, employees in plain clothes who keep eyes out for shoplifters, tried to stop the man, a violent struggle ensued.
“He tried to take him in custody and he came up swinging,” Berlin said.
Silva then pulled used syringes from his pocket and stabbed one of the agents multiple times, police say .
Enter the gun:
Mar 27, 2014
Conservative Joni Ernst is running for Senate from the state Iowa.
We don’t know much about her other than she has a great (as in hysterically funny) ad that is getting traction everywhere.
I grew up castrating hogs on an Iowa farm. So in Washington, I’ll know how to cut pork. Washington’s full of big spenders…let’s make ‘em squeal.
That’s good stuff.
Mar 26, 2014
We have to say that until this past Monday, we had never heard of “Operation Something Bruin” until a small blurb on the blog Ace of Spades. We talked to several people and asked if they had ever heard of “Operation Something Bruin” and got blank stares in return.
According to a now defunct website (you can see the remnants, but the site no longer works) Operation Something Bruin was:
…..a multi-agency initiative focused on illegal activities involving bears and other wildlife in North Carolina and Georgia. Those involved include state wildlife agencies, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Park Service.
Hunting illegally, most commonly called “poaching” is a crime and it should be. Species of animals can be hunted to the point of near extinction. In that the lives of animals and species are interwoven with other animals in ways we often don’t understand or foresee, it is important to make sure people are hunting in a legal manner. For Operation Something Bruin, people hunting bears were the target of an investigation that was born in 2009, lasted through 2013 and cost over two million dollars. As for the bears:
(There is a thriving black market for items such as bear claws, meat and hides, and also for bear organs, especially in China, where bear gall bladders are believed to have powerful aphrodisiac properties.)
Armed with money and a new found sense of purpose, the federal agencies went after hunters with a vengeance. It was a vengeance that reeks more of illegal entrapment and force rather than a proper investigation.
The operation yielded hundreds of charges against over 80 people. While that sounds like a good deal, it is how the investigation and operation took place that is highly questionable.
During one hunter’s trial in Haywood County, agents admitted to buying illegal bait for bears in Tennessee, and placing it in a hunter’s yard in Graham County. Hunters witnessed the officers killing at least four of the ten bears that were taken. These agents, against the advice of hunters, removed the bears’ gallbladders and called hunters from surrounding counties to try to get them to participate in the illegal selling of bear parts. The hunters refused to take part in this illegal activity. These are only two of the many tactics used in attempts to entrap hunters of Western North Carolina.
According to one attorney, Arnold admitted in court to violating 39 wildlife laws.
North Carolina residents held a public forum on January 18, 2014 which was attended by North Carolina State Senator Jim Davis, R-Franklin, and North Carolina State Representative Joe Sam Queen, D-Waynesville,in which more details of the activities of the federal agents came to light.