Wile, Wit, Wisdom & Weaponry

Ruminations, Opinions & Debate about the world as I see it and the toys that make it bearable!

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Location: TEXAS, United States

-Defender of the Second Amendment, the "little guy", free market system, liberty and freedom from government!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Deserter or Objector?

If you haven't heard about this story, you can scan it quickly at this link:


The crux of the matter is that 23-yr old Kyle Snyder decided to flee the Union while on military leave in 2005 choosing the country north of our border whose flag bears the red maple leaf. (He didn't want to be redeployed to Mesopotamia.) In Kyle's words,
" I don't see a lot of positive things coming from this war...
I see it as a counterproductive mission."

Hmm...sounds like a perfect Associated Press sound bite, doesn't it? Could it be that this young man spent more time observing the media's perception of his duties rather than taking stock in his work while serving with a Combat Engineering outfit? Being only 23, it's certainly possible.

Admittedly, I never served in any of the Armed Forces. Some days that makes me sad as I have an unwavering attitude of respect for all who wear the uniform- who consciously and willingly sign up for this duty. But, I remain thankful that I didn't serve in uniform during a time of war- a bit of logic that kept me from signing up with the Reserves the Summer before my freshman year of College. As it turned out, one of my classmates was called up and served in Operation Desert Storm in 1991. (It could have been me.)

I have another friend who started out in boot camp in the late 80's and was selected for Special Forces training. This guy was not only physically stout, he was intellectually astute. It wasn't long before he made his way up the chain and earned his bars. Sometime during his training, he decided that the "careless, warlike attitudes" of his comrades bothered him. He applied for concientious objector status and several months later was discharged from the Army Rangers. His superiors noting that this wasn't someone who was scared, he had wholeheartedly had a change of heart and therefore, was not suited for combat operations as he was trained to do. Too many people, both in and outside his unit, could die as a result of his hesitation in the field.
Fortunately for him and his superiors- someone recognized this in him and did the right thing by pulling him out before something went wrong.

It would be unfair for me to point a finger at Mr. Snyder and call him a traitor or a deserter based solely on this sparse article penned by the AP. (Afterall, we all know how accurate and unbiased many of those reporters are!) We have only one side of (t)his story. But I'm curious why Mr. Snyder didn't apply for objector status once home from his first tour if he was worried about getting called up again? His statement that he "wasn't trained for combat patrol" is either a misquote, or he simply forgot about those 8 weeks of boot camp. Every recruit, regardless of what outfit they serve in, has had some measure of patrol experience as far as I can gleen from my buddies who have served in uniform. To say he wasn't trained, is not accurate. To say he wasn't prepared, or- he wasn't able to perform that duty due to fear, is probably more accurate. And truthfully, who could blame him? Patrols in urban environments are far more difficult than open field training excercises where combatants are spotted in "clicks" rather than mere feet.

No, I think it's a shame that there are those who don't accurately and methodically weigh one's decisions prior to striking out in a given direction within our military circles. Certainly, circumstances play a part in the decision process, but one must also carry the thought processes past the point of merely signing the recruiting papers. You are being trained to defend, to combat enemies seen and unseen, and yes, sometimes to kill said combatants. The decision to follow through with your duty, your superior's orders, should be considered before you put that uniform on. Like any other job in this world, sometimes you are asked to do something you don't particularly care for, but that doesn't mean you turn your back on your country. You get in there and do it- you signed up for it. You took an oath to defend your country. Your uniform demands that of you. Your unit depends on you. Your buddy's life depends on you standing firm with your back to his/hers. Your country trained you to protect her citizens and the innocent and you- you went to Canada?

Hats off to all our military men and women who stand in the breach, day after day, protecting this fine country in defense of liberty so that we at home can wave a new, unsoiled flag and erroneously call it "freedom".

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Would you go this far...?

Imagine that you have the opportunity for that once-in-a-lifetime hunt for the elusive white-tailed deer...would you consider hunting a 'game ranch' where the deer are born and raised on the place, especially nurtured for body mass, antler size and reproductive capability? Is that your idea of 'hunting'?

The above picture was sent to me by a friend of mine. He says a buddy from his in Brownwood, TX. sent it to him with no details other than the fact that this deer sports a 44" rack! Here's a view of this animal's backside:

Now, if you look closely at pic #2 (above) you will notice a nice, neat yellow tag attached to the right ear. This is more probably an animal raised on someone's HEAVILY managed, laboratory bred, steroid injected, high fenced, midnight massages, chef cooking, 5-star lodging, helicopter counting, wildlife biologist controlled deer replication area...

Imagine for a moment that animal cloning was not only legal, but allowed to take place under the auspice and oversight of medical professionals. I'm thinking one area that would absolutely explode in growth would be those facilities that offer the so-called 'canned hunt'. Where any bloke with a weapon paying a hefty fee can walk onto a place and shoot a deer as big as his pocket book will allow. (Texas is full of places such as these.)

For me, the wonderment of hunting a true 'trophy' comes from carefully examining the deer's movements, eating and sleeping habits all while on open country- no high fence. Somehow, hunting land with high fence would ruin the experience for me. I like being able to say I've been watching this deer for some time, and I knew that eventually its habits would intersect with mine and offer a fair chance at taking this deer. A trophy is just that, you earned the experience. Sure, I've paid money for leasing a property- but I didn't stack the deck in my favor when it came to taking the game. The game I hunt, on the land I hunt, have just as many choices as I do when it comes to it's daily activities. I don't call somebody up and tell them, " I have a 3-hour window on a certain day in which to hunt and I would like the chef to have a 6-course meal waiting at the end of the excursion- and I'll pay you at the end of dessert." No sir, that is not my idea of hunting and frankly, I don't understand those who are willing to do so. Whether you can afford it or not- that is not the question. I can afford to save my pennies and do these hunts, but you won't find me doing so. There is absolutely nothing sporting about it. You might as well thumb through a catalogue, pick a deer and a date on the calendar and get on with it. My forefathers would rise up from the grave and kick my sorry butt for even thinking about conducting such a travesty...

What are your thoughts?

Friday, October 13, 2006

Life with Liberals in control...

Earlier this week, my Dad sent these to me via email from another source. I liked the idea behind it so much, I added some of my own. What would the world look like in the year 2029 with liberals in control of the world? Here are some suggested headlines in the media:

1. Spotted Owl plague threatens crops and livestock in the norwestern portion of the U.S.

2. Baby conceived naturally- scientists stumped.

3. Couple requests U.S. Supreme Court to reinstate heterosexual marriage.

4. Iran still closed off; UN estimates it will take at least 25 more years before radioactivity decreases to safe levels.

5. France pleads for help after being overrun by Jamaica.

6. US Post Office raises first class stamp to $17.90 and reduces mail delivery to Wednesdays.

7. Massachusetts executes last remaining conservative.

8. Supreme Court rules punishment for criminals violates their civil rights.

9. IRS sets lowest tax rate at 75 percent.

10. Florida Election Commission reports they are still having trouble with voting machines.

11. Ozone created by electric cars now killing millions in the 7th largest country in the world, Mexifornia, formerly referred to as California. White minorities attempt to have English recognized as Mexifornia's third language.

12. Environmentalists stumped after global temperatures decrease by 6 degrees over the past 15 years.

13. Prices topping all time high for Heating Oil and Natural Gas after last petroleum refinery is shut down in favor of nuclear reactors.

14. Togo reports they have a nuclear weapon ready for detonation. France/Jamaica in panic.

15. Polar ice caps and most glaciers increasing in size and depth due to colder, global temperatures...scientists stumped.

16. President Putin of Russia celebrates his 14th election victory.

17. Scientists studying the remains of Edward Kennedy in the family's glass encased tomb in Arlington Cemetary amazed at lack of decomposition. Reseachers resume study on alcohol consumption...

18. EPA issues 10 million, no limit (free) hunting licenses to US citizenry to control exploding deer population across the lower 48.

19. The makers of Pine Sol sued in court over widow defending herself against home intruder.
Intruder blinded- attorney cries 'foul'.

20. Boy Scouts of America petition to begin a new 21st Century Charter after being disbanded in 2010 by the ACLU. ACLU threatens to fight petition all the way to Supreme Court unless BSA allows homosexual leadership within troops.

21. Girl Scouts of America looking for new fundraising idea after USDA study concludes that consumption of mass quantities of cookies induce weight gain in both children and adults.

22. Fidel Castro celebrates his 112th birthday by firing Russian made SKS rifle from balcony.
UN threatens sanctions for "irresponsible display". French populace in panic.

23. Criminal successfully sues his victim for $80 million after it was determined victim responsible for said criminal's pants ripping while in pursuit of said victim.

24. France requests armistice agreement with Switzerland.

25. Bill Clinton, 84, arrested in Retirement Center for fondling geriatric patients in wheelchairs.

26. Al Gore announces candidacy for President with running mate John Kerry at his side. (Third time's a charm)

Monday, October 09, 2006

Curly (Tiger) Maple

Imagine this wrapped around the Beretta 391 semi-automatic action!

I Love Beautiful Wood!

"There is nothing like a good piece of hickory..."

So says Clint Eastwood's character in the movie Pale Rider- one of my all time favorite movies, and one of my favorite movie lines! Hickory aside, I have to say that I love good, figured wood on my firearms. (And Hickory won't cut it...)

I don't have many pieces in my collection that particularly prove that statement, but I can appreciate a wonderful piece when it comes into my view. Take this past weekend for example. I was working as a volunteer at the local Sporting Clays range. I was general 'lacky', station puller, and 'gofer'. Not that I minded, you see, I was outdoors doing what I love best. Enjoying nature with gunlovers and getting to ogle a few wonderful over/unders that showed up for the tournament along with their owners.

About half way through the day, I was driving a cart down to one of the stations that was running low on targets. As I pulled up, someone was already locked and loaded ready to fire on the combination rabbit/crosser. Not wanting to be rude, I stopped the cart and parked it so as not to distract the shooter. What happened next, distracted me! I watched with great interest as this young fella' began to annihilate each target in turn. (He only missed 1 of 8!) As he turned to leave the station, this wonderful flash of bright yellow mixed with broad, dark stripes caught my attention. He had a custom stocked Beretta 391 Ulrika with a beautifully finished Tiger Maple stock! I was in awe. Turns out, he had recently purchased the weapon from a local stock maker who, as he put it, "is literally on his deathbed." The young man purchased the gun as an investment, but he couldn't bear not shooting it, so brought it out to the tournament to give it a proper wringing out. If you have never seen a wonderfully finished piece of Tiger Maple (Also known as "Curly"), I've included the pic above. I tell you truthfully, I was salivating long and hard this past Saturday. I also filed this information way back in my 'ol brain for a future project...now where did I put that draw knife?

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Gun Control?

Recently, I ran across the views of a local candidate for state representative on a web-site and responded to the candidate's views with some of my own- directly to their email link. What is not surprising, I have not heard A WORD from this candidate because I took (he/she) to task on a couple of points they were trying to make. For instance, this particular candidate feels that society does not have enough regulations/laws concerning firearm ownership. (Never mind that there are at least 500 at the federal level, and thousands at the state level.) My point to the would be representative was (and is): "Laws do not deter criminals from committing crimes, prosecution of criminal/illegal conduct deters future crimes." Further, I went on to state that we could pass another 1,000 laws specific to firearms but it wouldn't deter most crooks from stealing a firearm and committing a crime. The second point this candidate made was that so-called "Saturday Night Specials" (i.e 'cheap' guns), should be made harder to obtain by the general populace as this was the pool from which criminals obtained their weapon of choice. I took this to mean that guns should have a higher price tag to deter would be criminals from obtaining them, or- the candidate meant that Joe Q. Citizen should be punished for wanting a gun in their home that is cheaply produced and therefore readily available. Either way, the thought process behind this is insane. (As far as I know, Cadillac Escalades are still selling for far more than Toyota Corollas, but the Escalades are the most stolen vehicle of all time in the US.)
Yeah, let's set the price tag higher...that'll stop 'em in their tracks.

Folks, this is the difference between liberal democratic ideology and conservative, common sense truths. When you prosecute a criminal in a worthwhile manner, that criminal is going to think twice about committing another crime. If you let said criminal go with a fine and or community service for his offense, that tells the criminal he should have planned bigger the first time around, and now, thanks to the judge- he will plan bigger for his next attempt.

God save us from the ideological galactically stupid...arrest the suckers and quit making laws!!!!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

I just couldn't resist!

I couldn't resist snapping a picture with my camera phone when I pulled into my local gas station during lunch today! There was no way anyone would believe me if I simply told them what I paid per gallon- I had to have proof!

I'm not sure about you, but I was beginning to think we would never see gas under $2/Gal ever again. Like the fella said in the Wolf Brand Chili commercials several years ago, "Friend, how long has it been since you had....well, that's too long!"

It's been TOO long since we have seen decent prices for gasoline in this country. I hope we continue to see a steady plummet at the pump over the next few weeks!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

A Greasy Spot In The Road....

At the risk of alienating the two women who have ventured into this blog, I must say that women in general will be the death of me- not figuratively, but literally! (Women drivers.)

Today, I witnessed a VERY common occurance here in town while sitting in the drive-through during lunch time. I'm two cars back from the front. A man steps from the front door of the diner and crosses in front of us warily eyeing the outside of the cars looking to see if anyone is coming. What he cannot see is a lady, who is passing our line of cars on the outside, driving so fast (in the parking lot) that she is aligned perfectly in the guy's blind spot. He can't see her between cars. The lady driving the white blazer nearly blasted this guy out of his sneakers! Much to the 'ol guy's credit, he did not wave the universal sign of peace when the woman slammed on her brakes. To HER credit, she rolled her window down to apologize to the fellow for soiling his Fruit of the Looms.

I've lived in this town for almost 5 years. Since arriving, I've noticed an acute outbreak of manic driving- from both genders. But after careful scrutiny, I've found that the women outnumber the men by about 4 to 1 when it comes to insane driving. I'm wondering if the local schools still teach driver's ed, and if so, WHO is doing the teaching???!!!

Several times, I've been forced to slam on my brakes because some woman looked me square in the eye before pulling out from a dead stop to enter my lane. (Of course, she waits until the absolute last nanosecond before doing so.)

I'm thinking of starting a local petition for my City Council to consider-"Mandatory City Wide Remedial Driver's Ed for All Women Aged 18-85"

Too bad I don't live in Louisiana, I think I know who the first to sign this petition would be!

To my wife: I wish cloning were legal- this town could use more drivers like you, babe!