Friday, December 28, 2007

Alarm Tells the Cops Where to Find the Bodies

Thanks to a suggestion by Right Wing Rocker, I'm placing an answer I made to a comment to another of my entries here on the front page for easier access. It's relevant to one of my top priorities: the right to self defense.

The comment, lamenting the irrational and very dangerous Australian version of gun control, is from MK of MK's Views and other blogs:

Yep, we here are paying the price for the fear of guns, parents out here not have an irrational fear of guns, children are taught that guns are bad, there are hysterical campaigns against having gun shops in neighborhoods. It's almost as if people think the guns walk out around killing people or something.

The crime rate might be rising in Australia but i doubt the people will see the only answer.

My answer to the comment is as follows:

There's a tv ad by a home alarm firm here in the Stalag. It shows a thuggy looking guy breaking into a house, with a woman and a child cowering in a nearby room. The alarm goes off. The thug flees at the sound.

At that moment, the phone rings; it's a dispatcher from the alarm company. "Are you all right?" says the dispatcher.

"Somebody just broke in," she answers, looking like a rabbit under the gaze of a coyote.

"We'll be right there." he answers. She, of course, looks relieved.

I always ask, aloud, of whoever I happen to be with, "Lady, where's your gun? Don't you think enough of your child to want to protect him? In real life, the thug might not flee."

I always bring that up, and similar comments whenever I see something in the news in which I think having a gun might've saved a life.

I hope it makes people think.

The point is, whenever someone expresses an irrational fear of guns, of the sort that tells you that individual might be inclined to favor gun control, one must speak up. One has to, without taking on the role of a fire-and-brimstone evangelist, attempt to correct the oft-held view that private ownership and defensive use of weapons shouldn't be allowed.

News, mostly from alternative and local sources, continually offers stories of thugs robbing, maiming and killing unarmed innocents in Australia, England, New Zealand and other gun controlled countries--and of course, it happens here in the various United States too, as we're under a sort of de facto gun control here. Even in states that actually recognize the existence of the Second Amendment, sanctions against weapons carry exist. One need only scan recent US news stories to find many cases in which lives might've been saved had there been one or more weapons-carrying individuals nearby.

One must be vocal. One must write letters to the editorial pages of newspapers. One must write letters to sponsors of pro gun control radio and tv shows, and one must write letters to politicians.

To the extent one can afford the time and money, one should attend pro-self defense rallies and practice shooting at your local gun range. Bring a friend (I've taken several friends to the range; they always comment about how much they enjoyed it).

I'm sure this won't be the end of my comments on this subject, so stand by.

Shoot 'em if you got 'em.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Friday, December 21, 2007

Johann Strauß, For the Third Time!

For the third consecutive December, Debbie and I enjoyed the Andre Rieu Christmas concert at the Honda Ponda in Anaheim. Both of us dearly love Strauss waltzes, and Rieu and his orchestra play them so well, with a sense of light-hearted fun.

Last year's concert was very much a Christmas concert, heavily loaded with season's typical music selections, and done well. While I enjoyed the program and the Reiu arrangements, I missed a number of the Strauss works for which Rieu is famous.

This year, he went the other way. While the orchestra played its traditional version of "Silent Night," the audience sang along. We clapped enthusiastically during "Jingle Bells," and all were smiling during "Winter Wonderland" and the other Christmas songs.

There was more of a Strauss presence this year--a few dozen couples danced in the aisles to "The Blue Danube," and the applause was enthusiastic after a very energetic performance of "Radetsky's March," "The Emperor's Waltz and a couple of others.

While I'm not much of a fan of opera, and know very little about it, Rieu is beginning to turn me around. There are three tenors in his retinue, and three sopranos. Among them, they sang a few operatic excerpts and and other songs that lend themselves to powerful vocals. The most memorable of these was the aria called "O Mio Babbino Caro," from Gianni Schicchi by Giacomo Puccini, and sung by the lovely Carmen Monarcha. Many a tear was shed during Ms Monarcha's performance, even in this setting.

Here is the complete concert:

  1. Seventy-six Trombones (M Wilson)
  2. Tritsch Tratsch Polka (J. Strauss)
  3. Rosen aus dem Süden (J. Strauss)
  4. Chianti
  5. Nessun Dorma (G. Puccini)
  6. Eljen a Magyar (J. Strauss)
  7. Song of the Wolga (F. Lehar)
  8. Besame Mucho (C Velasquez), Laura Engel, Soloist
  9. Silent Night (J. Mohr)
  10. The Holy City (S. Adams)
  11. White Christmas (I. Berlin)
  12. Jingle Bells (J. I Pierpoint)


  1. Gold & Silver (F. Lehar)
  2. Granada (A. Lara)
  3. The Girls from the Chantant (E. Kalman)
  4. Emperor's Waltz (J. Strauss)
  5. O Mio Babbino Caro (G. Puccini), Carmen Monarcha, Soloist
  6. The Blue Danube (J. Strauss)
  7. Concerto Pour une Voix (C. Saint-Preux), Mirusia Louwerse, Soloist
  8. Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again (I. Webber), Mirusia Louwerse, Soloist
  9. Bolero (M Ravel)
  10. Radetzky March (J. Strauss)


Rieu's concerts are literally the only ones we've attended in the past three years, except for the ones they have at the Scottish and Celtic fairs in which Debbie's Scottish Fiddlers of LA have performed.

Andre Rieu's concerts are not only a lot of fun, but they're a light-hearted introduction to classical music for those who've thought it dull or too stodgy.

Nineteenth Century rock 'n' roll.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

A Lesson in Gun Control

The following series of statements has been circulating through the e-mails for a year or so. If you've already read it, I'm sorry for taking up your time, but it is a subject I regard as very important--as many of you already know. My brother, the Texan sent it to me most recently, and I thank him for having done so.

In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control.
From 1929 to 1953, about 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.


In 1911, Turkey established gun control. From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.


Germany established gun control in 1938 and from 1939 to 1945, a total of 13 million Jews and others who were unable to defend themselves were rounded up and exterminated.


China established gun control in 1935. From 1948 to 1952, 20 million political dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.


Guatemala established gun control in 1964. From 1964 to 1981, 100,000 Mayan Indians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.


Uganda established gun control in 1970. From 1971 to 1979, 300,000 Christians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.


Cambodia established gun control in 1956. From 1975 to 1977, one million educated people, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.


Defenseless people rounded up and exterminated in the 20th Century because of gun control: 56 million.


It has now been 12 months since gun owners in Australia were forced by new law to surrender 640,381 personal firearms to be destroyed by their own government, a program costing Australian taxpayers more than $500 million dollars. The first year results are now in:

Australia-wide, homicides are up 3.2 percent.
Australia-wide, assaults are up 8.6 percent.
Australia-wide, armed robberies are up 44 percent (yes, 44 percent)!
In the state of Victoria alone, homicides with firearms are now up 300 percent.

Note that while the law-abiding citizens turned them in, the criminals did not, and criminals still possess their guns!

While figures over the previous 25 years showed a steady decrease in armed robbery with firearms, this has changed drastically upward in the past 12 months, since criminals now are guaranteed that their prey is unarmed.

There has also been a dramatic increase in break-ins and assaults of the ELDERLY.

Australian politicians are at a loss to explain how public safety has decreased, after such monumental effort and expense was expended in successfully ridding Australian society of guns.

The Australian experience and the other historical facts above prove it.

You won't see this data on the US evening news, or hear politicians disseminating this information.

Guns in the hands of honest citizens save lives and property and, yes, gun-control laws adversely affect only the law-abiding citizens.

Take note my fellow Americans, before it's too late!

The next time someone talks in favor of gun control, please remind them of this history lesson.

With guns, we are 'citizens'.

Without them, we are 'subjects'.

During World War II the Japanese decided not to invade because they knew most Americans were ARMED!
Australians will know that those first-year crime statistics are old by now, but the more recent stats have continued the trend. Also, the final comment about the Imperial Japanese refers to a ground invasion, since they obviously did attack Pearl Harbor by air. Had the Japanese mounted a ground attack 'pon the American mainland, it would've been very embarrassing for them.

Shoot 'em if ya got 'em!

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Case For Freedom in Medicine

The following is a quote from Ayn Rand's novel, Atlas Shrugged. I copied this paragraph once before, but I think the theme of this paragraph needs to be read, digested and understood now, more than ever before. Medicine is perishing in an orgy of government regulation and theft. Doctor Hendricks, a character in the book who goes on strike against government usurpation of his freedom and his medical judgment, tells why he decided to strike:

"I quit when medicine was placed under State control, some years ago," said Dr. Hendricks. "Do you know what it takes to perform a brain operation? Do you know the kind of skill it demands, and the years of passionate, merciless, excruciating devotion that go to acquire that skill? That was what I would not place at the disposal of men whose sole qualification to rule me was their capacity to spout the fraudulent generalities that got them elected to the privilege of enforcing their wishes at the point of a gun. I would not let them dictate the purpose for which my years of study had been spent, or the conditions of my work, or my choice of patients, or the amount of my reward. I observed that in all the discussions that preceded the enslavement of medicine, men discussed everything--except the desires of the doctors. Men considered only the 'welfare' of the patients, with no thought for those who were to provide it. That a doctor should have any right, desire or choice in the matter, was regarded as irrelevant selfishness; his is not to choose, they said, only 'to serve.' That a man who's willing to work under compulsion is too dangerous a brute to entrust with a job in the stockyards--never occurred to those who proposed to help the sick by making life impossible for the healthy. I have often wondered at the smugness with which people assert their right to enslave me, to control my work, to force my will, to violate my conscience, to stifle my mind--yet what is it they expect to depend on, when they lie on the operating table under my hands? Their moral code has taught them to believe that it is safe to rely on the virtue of their victims. Well, that is the virtue I have withdrawn. Let them discover the kind of doctors that their system will now produce. Let them discover, in their operating rooms and hospital wards, that it is not safe to place their lives in the hands of a man whose life they have throttled. It is not safe, if he is the sort of man who resents it--and still less safe, if he's the sort who doesn't."
This statement, along with several other statements made by the striking men of the mind in the novel, crystallize the thoughts of every productive individual who's given it the proper degree of thought. Everyone who works for a living, and realizes that he'd take home roughly twice as much pay, but for the extortion of the slave masters in government, and that everything he buys would cost less than half what it now costs, but for the taxes and regulations producers of goods and services must endure, will see how Dr Hendricks' decision will apply to himself. Then, he must decide how long he'll live and work under the slavery of the parasite.

They've killed Freedom! Those bastards!

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Priscilla the Knife

More years ago than can be counted on both your fingers and toes and mine, I was an elementary school student at West Elementary School in Grand Forks, North Dakota. Admittedly, it was a different time, but the principles involved are the same. The stated goal of the government children's prison system is to help parents prepare youngsters to be able to function as adults in the real world. Today, the children's prisons are failing--not only by ineptitude, but by conscious intent. They are trying to make herd animals out of our youth!

I'm not sure they weren't already working in that direction in my skool daze; after all, most people my age are eight-hour-a-day wage slaves just as are those graduating colleges today. Seems like many of the high-profile successes 'bout whom we read in the business journals and society gossip pages got where they are after slipping the yoke in their own youth.

Now, I like what I do, and actually look forward to going to work most days, but sometimes I wonder why I'm not a movie studio executive or a famous writer or a crocodile hunter. Well, with age comes wisdom, and I finally realized that my difficulty is that I've always been afraid to take risks regarding my livelihood. Fact of life. Now, I have to ponder the question of whether it's too late to change.

But, I'm wandering away from the subject: the abominable and purposeful failure of the government children's prison system, and its stubborn and deliberate inability to make educated and functional adults out of children. Parents are also failing at their part, as well--they were inmates of children's prisons in their youth.

Yesterday, according to a story on the website of Local 6 News in Orlando, Florida, a ten-year-old girl, an inmate at the Sunrise Elementary School in Ocala, was arrested for having a knife on school property--a felony in Florida. She had a steak knife that she'd brought from home, and was using it to cut her lunch into bite-sized bits.

There was no allegation that she'd used the knife in a threatening manner. She was transported down to Juvie Hall, presumably to be flogged, then stretched on the rack until she admits membership in a pre-teen terrorist organization. Look for a much taller Priscilla if and when she's released (or when her cabal effects an escape for her).

The long-ago time I referenced earlier in this missive saw me and many of my contemporaries carrying knives to school, and everywhere else, routinely. We called them jackknives, and they were often given to boys as Christmas gifts by fathers and uncles. They were a permanent part of our trouser pockets, and we used them to make slingshots and to carve our initials into the bark of trees. As Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts, our jackknives were an indispensable tool, to be used to do the tasks required to earn achievement badges.

I can only assume that young girls learned (in those days) to do Girl Scout things with knives, not to mention to learn to cook and bake under the tutelage of their mothers. And, of course, we all had to learn to handle tableware to dine without taking on the appearance of islamic savages.

What is it this that the Florida Children's Prison System is rejecting? The notion of eating meals like a civilized human being? Will the use of hands next be rejected? I can almost imagine the guards and wardens of the Florida Children's Prison System nodding in approval at the sight of the youngsters bent over the tables, faces in their plates and making snarling and snorting sounds while trying to snarf up gruel at the school cafeteria.

How long until walking upright will be forbidden?

Darwin was wrong. It's Devolution.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Friday, December 14, 2007

Stalag California In Fiscal Deep Scheiße, Says The Gubernator

Well, Duh!

In a story on the Bay area's NBC11 tv station's website, the Stalag will be over $14 billion in the 'rears by the end of the year. The story further observes that the Gubernator is going to announce the crisis in a few weeks.

I've yet to figure out why dopey politicians, in recent years, seem to have adopted the habit of announcing that they are going to announce (whatever).

State spending has increased by more than 40 percent since Schwarzenegger took office after the 2003 recall of then-Gov. Gray Davis. This after running on the platform of fixing state government, holding the line on both spending and taxes, while increasing spending for the children's prisons and the various welfare schemes that keep us all much poorer than our gross pay would seem to indicate. The contradictions are stunning. The fact that residents of the Stalag can't see it is even more stunning.

The Gubernator said, in an address in Long Beach today, that state government is in "fiscal crisis." In the same speech, he promised higher Medi-Cal payments to doctors and hospitals (shudder).

His announcement next month will supposedly declare a "fiscal emergency," which will give his office more power to make spending cuts. Seems he has an approximate 10% across the board cut waiting in the wings. We'll see how this flies with the Democrat-controlled State House.

This doofus actor has no bloody idea what he's doing. I don't think I'll ever watch "Twins" again!

Hasta la vista, Baby!

Warm regards,
Col. Hogan

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

To Kill A Thief

From a philosophical tenet I first read in an Ayn Rand essay, one has to realize that when a man sets out to take or damage the person or property of another, that's the moment he commits suicide. By not recognizing his victim's right to his life and property, he renounces the concepts of life and property--which effectively is a denial of his own right to his own life.

When his victim then shoots him in self defense, it's the criminal's own finger on the trigger. One needs never feel guilt over successfully defending himself.

Now, if only the law were to be rewritten to support this tenet......

They've killed Freedom! Those bastards!

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The Savage Islam Religion Kills Again

According to a Breitbart story, found on Drudge, another religion-crazed muslim murdered his own daughter for having committed the sin of not wearing a scarf!

Michelle Malkin also has a comment here.

Perhaps I ought to apologize to the many thousands of peaceful, law-abiding, hard working Muslims residing in the various United States, and I do. But, how can a rational being even consider any benevolent thought toward a belief system that demands these kinds of inhuman acts of its adherents?

His name is Muhammad Parvez. He lives in a Toronto, Ontario suburb. Well, he's in custody now, and I hope he stays there for the rest of his miserable life. This beautiful young girl of only sixteen years is now dead because she merely wanted to dress nicely, like her classmates.

I'm afraid, though, that Canada suffers from the same kind of multicultural moral relativism as do many of the Western countries, including leftist US judges. I'm afraid this monster might be given a minimal sentence and be free to live the full life he denied his daughter.

May the rest of his life be short and miserable.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Another Eight Victims of Gun Phobia

I wish I didn't have all these murders 'pon which to comment. I'd rather comment 'pon cases of individuals successfully defending themselves against attacks by craven savages like Robert Hawkins.

Nebraska's laws allow for concealed weapons carry with a permit (any restrictions 'pon one's right to keep and bear arms is unConstitutional--a requirement for a permit shouldn't be imposed). Theoretically, any individual might have been able to stop this murderer, had he been carrying a handgun. What prevented any chance of this is the Westroads shopping center's policy not to allow weapons inside the mall property. Hawkins obviously didn't heed the signs admonishing that no firearms are to be carried inside the mall.

Aside from the killer himself, who mercifully offed himself after his rampage, liability belongs to the Von Maur mall management for creating a "gun free zone," guaranteeing that any insane monster wishing to commit murder uninterrupted, will be able to do so.

The mall posted signs at the entrances which, in effect, said, "If you want to kill a few people in the mall, come ahead. You will be unopposed."And Hawkins was unopposed. He was only limited by the extent of his bloodthirstiness and the amount of ammunition he carried.

John Lott, Jr has made an undeniable case for legalization of concealed weapons carry in his books, "More Guns, Less Crime" and "The Bias Against Guns." We ignore our own self-protection against these loons at our own peril.

They've killed Freedom! Those bastards!

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Sunday, November 25, 2007

The Constitution of the United States of America

I might occasionally mention disagreement with certain segments and clauses in the Constitution but, though flawed, it's by far the best government charter in existence and in history. The main difficulties with the document are those that, in a civil contract, would be nullified by just about any court: a) it applies, by force of government arms, to everyone by virtue of happening to live in a certain geographical area--even to those who haven't signed it and b) one--either an individual or a group--can't opt out except by leaving the described geographical area. Moreover, restrictions against traveling beyond the limits of the borders become more rigorous every year.

Yet those in whom we're forced to place our trust with carrying out the mandates of this document are more and more wont to ignore its restrictions. In spite of the fact that each and every one of them is sworn to an Oath to uphold and defend the US Constitution, they wantonly and constantly try to create programs that deeply harm their constituents, making convoluted and rationally indefensible justifications for their violations of their Oaths of Office. The founders, one and all, federalist and anti-federalist, would be up in arms waging a new Revolution, were they alive to see this nullification of all that for which they gave their lives, fortunes, their sacred honor.

A very few in Congress, according to a column by Chuck Muth, are swimming against this tide, showing that they 're actually familiar with the document, but respect it and their Oath. Congressman John Shadegg (R-Ariz) has written a proposal to this end. His “Enumerated Powers Act” stipulates that “Each act of Congress shall contain a concise and definite statement of the Constitutional authority relied upon for the enactment of each portion of that act.”

He has only thirty cosponsors so far, including Congressman and Presidential candidate Ron Paul (R-Texas). In light of the spinelessness and the contempt most Republicans (trumped only by that of the Democrats) feel towards American independence and liberty, one has to wonder what's happened to this Great Experiment.

A more radical proposal, more palatable to the free-minds-and-markets advocate that is my very own self, is that suggested by L Neil Smith, in The Libertarian Enterprise. The Zeroth Amendment, to be placed in front of the other ten Amendments of the Bill of Rights, reads as follows:


I. Any public official or employee who, knowingly or unknowingly, violates—or participates in the violation of—any provision of the first ten amendments to the United States Constitution shall, in full public view and over such media as exist at the time, be hanged by the neck until he is dead.

II. The word "he" is not to be construed so as to exclude female public officials or employees.

III. This amendment, upon ratification, shall be inserted in the Constitution just before the First Amendment.

The "Zeroth Amendment" might seem a bit extreme to some, unless you consider the amount of your productivity they've been stealing from us throughout the length of our lives, and further consider that there's never been any leniency shown by the jack-booted thugs of the IRS, DEA, BATFE and a host of other terrorist squads created unConstitutionally by these selfsame Oath violators.

Read the Constitution. Do what it says.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Leftist Celebrity Hypocrisy

According to a story in TMZ, a car driven by Julia Roberts' hubby Danny Moder was found and photographed parked in front of Malibu's How's market yesterday, in a Handicapped parking space!

Roberts, a member in good standing if Hollywood's Airhead Left, is often seen and heard railing against all things conservative, and in favor of all things socialist and irrational (but, I repeat myself!), anywhere she can find the front end of a camera.

Well, she found a host of paparazzi cameras in front of How's, showing her true stripes: those of a Hollywood elitist hypocrite.

Do as I say, not as I do.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Friday, November 23, 2007

Algorians' Game

A friend of mine, the Philosophical Detective, has linked and article by Orson Scott Card, a science fiction and fantasy author. The article can be found in Meridian Magazine, a publication catering to members of the Church of Latter Day Saints.

The article is fairly long, but very easy to read. It describes the genesis of the climate change religion, nee "global warming." I won't attempt to analyze or criticize the article, but to say that it flows parallel with the evidence and the assumptions I've made about the algorians and the Global Warming Hoax from the early days of its announcement.

I highly recommend reading this work, if you're interested in fighting the further diminishment of our liberty that is the only thing this trend offers.

Tip of the old gray fedora: Philosophical Detective

They've killed Freedom! Those bastards!

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Thursday, November 22, 2007

The American Holiday

As I relax, letting my Thanksgiving dinner settle in, and feel the drowsiness brought on by my tryptophan fix, I find myself contemplating the meaning of the day. I'm old enough to remember having been taught that Thanksgiving was a celebration of the success of the Plymouth Colony, having a bountiful harvest after giving up communal farming in favor of private farms. The guards at the government's children's prisons don't teach that anymore. They'd have us all drown in a sea of altruism.

I've just finished reading two excellent columns about the day, as published on the Atlasphere website. The first is by John Stossel, the well-known co-anchor of the ABC newsmagazine, "20/20." It briefly outlines the beginnings of the holiday and points out the problem solved by the Pilgrims by having privatized their farming efforts.

The second column is by Debi Ghate, of the Ayn Rand Institute. In it, she describes the rational pride we all ought to feel in our work, as productive individuals. She points out that Ayn Rand referred to Thanksgiving as "a producer's holiday."

Both columns are well worth a read.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

You, Too Can Own A Gun--If You'll Wear A Bullseye Tattoo On Your Forehead

In honor of National Ammo Day, I went to my neighborhood Turner Outdoorsman sporting goods store to buy some cartridges for my wee Bersa, and a couple of speed loaders for my ancient wheelgun. 'Tis the first time I've purchases any ammo since relocating to El Pueblo de Los Angeles. I didn't realize just how far down that nasty fascist path El Alcalde has led his evil City Council these past couple of years!

In order to purchase handgun ammo, I had to show identification, sign a registration form 'pon which I had to place a thumb print. Let me hasten to add that I'd never have capitulated to this atrocity, except that my fingerprints and other identifying bits have been in the filthy hands of the various hounds of state since I was a wee lad, and trying to become incognito at this late hour would be futile.

So I did it. But, I'm pissed.

You see, this is only necessary within El Pueblo de Los Angeles. Anyone can go over to Burbank or Glendale, or any of the cities surrounding El Pueblo, but I was unaware that El Pueblo had sunk to such depths. Well, I was kind of aware; it's hard to miss all the corruption and self serving crapola at City Hall, even if you're a foopbaw fan.

I'll be driving to another town next time I want to purchase ammo.

People shouldn't be afraid of their governments; governments should be afraid of their people.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Warrant? Warrant!? We Don't Need No Steenking Warrant!!

In the wake of all the federal search and seizure violations, caused by the President's blatant disregard of his Oath of Office, a news story in the Boston Globe informs us that Boston's finest, no strangers to violations of the Bill of Rights themselves, want to have permission to enter and search local residences for guns without a warrant!

The fascist-inspired Homeland Security Act has set up an alphabet soup of Gestapo-styled agencies, unConstitutional every one, designed to examine every bit of information transferred by any medium, and to regulate any travel and most trade transactions, on the pretext of protecting us from a gaggle of primitive savages who live ten thousand miles away and would have no means of travel faster than camelback, but for the federal government's own meddling.

So now, the Boston police are taking another step on the way to totalitarianism.

They aren't supposed to be looking for guns. They're supposed to be looking for criminals!

The reason for a search warrant is contained in the 4th Amendment:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
The 4th Amendment is very explicit, and allows for no exceptions, other than the unfortunate use of the word unreasonable, which would've been better left out. It's up to the judge to decide whether the search is reasonable.

As if to belie any reasonable rationale for the searches, Boston Police Commissioner Edward F. Davis says that the police won't be targeting the homes of known or suspected criminals, but will "focus on juveniles 17 and younger...." Juveniles who are not suspected of any crime?

Now, there likely won't be very much misuse of this program at first, but the fact of being able to search homes without a warrant is a small step leading very quickly to the proverbial slippery slope. And, that first step is unConstitutional.

At the risk of sounding like an alarmist, do I have to remind everyone that America's socialists have been trying, in every way possible and some not possible, to put an end to every American's ability to defend himself for over a century? I shouldn't.

This program isn't aimed at a gaggle of Boston juvenile delinquents. It's aimed at us all.

People shouldn't be afraid of their governments; governments should be afraid of their people.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Calling All Neocons! Stop Ron Paul Any Way You Can!

It's been amazing to watch, and it's been happening in leftist Republican circles for, I don't know, thirty years. Maybe more. Leftist Republicans, currently called Neocons and previously called Country Club Republicans, are actually working to thwart the efforts of free market, limited government Republicans.

Nothing new here: the Rockefeller types battled against Goldwater back in the 1660's, handing Washington to the Democrats for 25 years--with Nixon (a really nasty leftist type) and Reagan (better, but weak in certain areas, and GHW Bush, a true Neocon) as the main exceptions. Leftist Republicans fought against Reagan, but lost.

Here in the Stalag, an incumbent, very leftist tax-and-spender, Governor Pete Wilson was opposed in the Primary by the free market Republican Ron Unz. The state party backed Wilson, which put me out of the Republican Party for many years. Unz almost won anyway. Then Wilson faced a Democrat whom anyone could've beaten--even I. Kathleen Brown was unelectable and everyone knew it. For California Republicans to endorse Wilson for reelection was an explicit rejection of free market, limited government politics.

I'm sure this sort of thing happened dozens, if not hundreds of times around the country since the end of WWII.

Now, we come to the 2008 Presidential Primaries. We have eight contenders still in the race, seven of whom are either leftists of various stripes or who haven't yet made all their positions clear--and one free market, limited government candidate, Dr Ron Paul.

Most of the Republican pundits, favor any of the seven leftist/neocon candidates and save more venom for Dr Paul that even for most of the Democrat candidates. Read an entry by Radley Balko in his blog The Agitator about what Republican columnist/pundit Mona Charen has to say about Dr. Paul.

Observe that whenever talk show superstar Sean Hannity does post-debate analysis of a Fox News Presidential debate, and when Ron Paul is winning their own telephone poll, Hannity always snidely dismisses it as, "the Ron Paul telephone campaign," or some such. Hannity rarely even mentions Paul during his radio show, during which he's always talking to or about one or more of the other candidates (usually the goose stepping, anti-self defense, philandering, Rudy Giuliani).

Michael Medved, to whom author L Neil Smith used to refer as "conservative light," goes off like Mount St Helens at every caller's mention of Dr Paul's name.

Rush Limbaugh
, while usually fair and occasionally complementary of Dr Paul, is clearly not on his side, preferring the more warlike candidates (which he must realize is an endorsement of federal empire building and rampant federal meddling in the affairs of other countries.

America's military is, by mandate of the Constitution, defensive by its nature.

As for me, I've all but decided not to vote. Call it withholding the sanction of the victim. I'm tired of placing myself among the numbers that, by implication, approve of the actions of this (and last) century's federal government and the virtual impossibility of bringing it back to the required limits of its Constitutional mandates.

The exception? Dr Ron Paul. In my view, he's not perfect, but none of the other candidates, Republican or Democrat, are balls tall to the doctor, and he's close enough to deserve a chance. If he wins, ok. If he doesn't, none of the others is worth the effort or the gasoline to drive to the polling place.

They've killed Freedom! Those bastards!

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California


It's so very obvious that the evil FBI raid 'pon the premises of Liberty Dollar, to steal around 60,000 Ron Paul coins, was a bought-and-paid-for hit by neocons, in the person of George W Bush. The reason? It's hoped that some of the bad press will rub off on Dr Paul's campaign. He's doing too well.

Note that dozens of private companies have been minting and printing coins and notes for decades, many of which could more likely be considered a parallel money than the Liberty Dollar. Disney Dollars, for example. Casino gaming chips, for another. They fit the criteria for fiat money to a T.

Why single out the Ron Paul Liberty Dollar? Now you know.

At least, the silver, gold and platinum Liberty coins have some intrinsic value, as containing a known amount of precious metal. The value of the paper crap put out by the Fed is currently sinking toward its actual value.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Remember, Remember the 19th of November

I shoot guns, and I do it every chance I get (though life in El Pueblo de Los Angeles offers precious little opportunity to shoot legally). I like handguns, since they present more of a challenge than do rifles. Most places where one can shoot in the urban area are indoor ranges that allow only handguns, and a few light rifles, such as .22's, which fits into my preferences quite well.

Monday, the 19th of November is National Ammo Day, as proclaimed and promoted by Nation of Volunteers, Inc, which is, as I understand it, a pro-2nd Amendment special interest group promoting traditional American values--particularly as regards to the Bill of Rights and the US Constitution.

National Ammos Day is a day to empty the ammunition from the shelves of your local gun store, sporting goods, or hardware store and put that ammunition in the hands of law-abiding citizens. Make your support of the Second Amendment known--by voting with your dollars!

Seems like a worthwhile idea, and it happens that I need to fill my inventory of ammo for my next trip to the range.

Fits together kind of nicely.

People shouldn't be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Sunday, November 11, 2007

War Is the Health of the State

I'm of two minds when I think of the men and women who've lived and died for our country in the US military.

Words can't express the gratitude I have for the warriors and those who didn't want to be warriors, but took up arms anyway to fight in wars that would've altered our society drastically, had we lost. I joined the Navy right out of high school, mostly to learn a trade and to avoid being a conscript in the Army. It was an experience I'll never forget. While most of my hitch was a peacetime cruise, we did face danger once, for a few days.

We were in the Caribbean taking part in the Cuban Missile Blockade. 'Twas a tense time, those few days we worked, mostly at General Quarters, waiting to see who'd blink or who'd launch. It scared me even more later, after I learned more of the story.

Which brings me to the other side of the coin. How many of these wars actually had to happen? In how many of these wars did we really need to involve ourselves?

The Revolutionary War--the war of independence from the British Crown, was the war that helped create the greatest nation on earth, a Constitutional Republic (not a democracy), and the pattern for dozens of other republics around the world--many of which have failed for lack of an individualistic philosophical base. There's no end to the respect I have for the Founders and all the individuals who fought to form the greatest nation in earth's history.

Unfortunately, the philosophical base that helped form the United States of America has deteriorated as well.

Most of the wars in which we've involved ourselves since could've been avoided, with less inept Presidents and Congresses. Simply adhering to the Founders' idea of avoidance of foreign entanglements would've left the nation far more capable of conducting trade and communication with other parts of the world, and allowed an always innovative America to advance and prosper in ways unimaginable to the people of less free parts of the world.

Might the United States, as a politically isolationist trader-state, have been attacked by foreign powers? Possibly, but with the ability of a free people to invent and industrialize, and the inability of dictatorships to marshal true enthusiasm on the part of the oppressed classes, it wouldn't have come to much.

So, while we celebrate the remembrance of our military veterans, living and dead, it behooves us to also remember that a moral government (if such isn't a contradiction) could've avoided the need for so much tragedy and so many needless deaths.

Of the many guns of the state, more are pointed inward than outward.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag california

Friday, November 09, 2007

Niggardly, Niggardly, Niggardly

In one of their most courageous moves of the year, the City Council of El Pueblo de Los Angeles passed a symbolic resolution to ban a word which is notorious for the volume of its use in South Central and other parts of El Pueblo heavily populated by Black folks. While the LA Times, to its credit did at least identify the word in question, I'll refrain from using it because, well, it's banned.

The word is so evil that words that sound similar turn heads. The word niggardly got a fellow in deep trouble in Washington DC a couple of years ago, because an illiterate Congressfool didn't know what it meant, and thought it was the word.

The funny part of Friday's Council session was that no one but the City Parasites seemed to care about the foul word.

The ignorant fools really wanted something done about all the gang warfare in their neighborhoods. They wanted an end to the robbing, mugging, shooting, killing and burgling. They wanted an end to the interracial battling between Black and Latin gangs.

The City Parasites quickly explained that, while they're aware of their concerns, the banning of a nasty word is far more important that the occasional crossfire killing or interracial gang war. Get your priorities straight, fer cryin' out loud!

So, I guess the status quo remains. The LAPD will continue to be in the station houses watching mandatory sensitivity lectures, except when they don full paramilitary battle armor to go down to a park and thump some heads.

People shouldn't be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of the people.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California
It's Easy to Hold Your Head High If There Ain't Nothin' In It!

Let me play a little game here. As a fairly recent Valley Rat, I'm getting to know the unusual sort of individual that inhabits this unique part of the Stalag. Gag me with a spoon!

No, they're good people, many of whom have never known want or real frustration, beyond the difficult but critical choice of the best gown for the Prom.

The woman of whom I speak is probably a beautiful woman. She's 31-years of age. She put in her time in the government's children's prison system and, I'm sure, earned a degree at (I'll make a wild guess) UCLA. She probably has a pretty lucrative career in a non-technical profession and she's married to a successful professional man, and they have two young sons.

She has never had to be responsible for any difficult personal decisions in her life. She's unable to put together a chain of probabilities to try to make a life-important decision. The connection between actions and their consequences is very tenuous with this person, as such teaching is very poorly carried out both by parents and the government's children's prisons, in recent years.

She never realized the following could happen (to her).

As detailed in Steve Lopez' column in the LA Times, she grew up in the Valley wishing she lived in Beverly Hills. Recently, she spent $3 million to buy a house in 90210.

In April, wildfires "came too close for comfort." In July, she heard about a burglary ring in the area. Last month, a coyote ate her miniature beagle.

Her home is on a hillside just below famed Mulholland Drive, abutting an undeveloped canyon with plenty of brush, grassy and wooded space between the multi-million dollar estates in the area. When asked whether she'd thought of the possibility of coyotes in the area, she said she'd have no problem with the occasional deer, "But we didn't know coyotes lived here."

I live on the flatlands less than a mile from the foot of that very same ridge, and I've seen coyotes, raccoons, possums, squirrels, hawks, and a fox in my yard, and in and near my street, for cryin' out loud. You don't leave your pets outside (unless they're big dogs).

This poor woman's taking a long time to grow up, and still has a ways to go.

To top it all off, and to add insult to injury, while she was complaining to the city of Beverly Hills about their shortcomings in their wild critter control department, she learned that her home isn't actually in Beverly Hills. It has the coveted 90210 zip code, but it's outside the Beverly Hills city limits in an area of El Pueblo de Los Angeles we fondly call Beverly Glen--still a posh and exclusive area but, alas, not Beverly Hills.

Into every life some rain must fall.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Hot Rod Fever

The preliminaries, called "qualifying," of the NHRA Finals at Pomona, are going on as I write this. I'd rather be there than here, but where's the time, where's the money? Qualifying goes on for three days, and is both exciting and fun. The fourth day, Sunday, is Final Eliminations, in which the race winners in each of four classes are determined. It's all very noisy and very exciting. If you've never heard (and felt) the roar of a 8000+ horsepower engine covering a quarter-mile from a standing start in four-and-one-half seconds, you've missed an extreme assault 'pon your senses.

A story in the LA Times Sports section the other day reminded me of the long history drag racing has in Southern California. It started here, as did many things, in the wake of World War II, with surviving veterans looking for outlets for the excitement to which they'd become accustomed while slogging through the mud and sands of faraway places.

There were the bikers, and there were the hot rodders.

Hot rodders would work on their cars, making them lighter by taking off superfluous parts and faster by installing bigger engines, modifying them and by using different tire/wheel/brake/suspension combinations. Naturally, they'd race against each other to measure the success of their efforts.

At first, the races were on rarely used roads ans streets. After a number of collisions and pileups, when the local police started cracking down, enterprising individuals started setting up dedicated race tracks around the Los Angeles area, for use by area hot rodders for a reasonable fee. For years, these tracks thrived. Between 1950 and the early 1980's, there were as many as eleven drag strips in Southern California.

Now, they're all gone but one, and that's at Pomona. It's not available for today's young hot rodders to use on any weekend.

Some say they all closed because of the rise in land values in Southern California. Others cite high insurance costs, in an era when a signed release of liability by an adult means nothing in a court of law.

Meanwhile, thrill seeking young men (and now, young women) still want to race. With no drag strips available this side of Bakersfield, where do they race? The streets. At night. In the normally quiet suburbs.

Since Southern California has a far denser population than in the late 1940's, quiet roads and streets are increasingly harder to find. There are more racing collisions, some involving the public, and some involving death.

But for an unknown and unknowable government regulations, edicts and unneeded laws, insurance organizations would be willing to write policies for reasonable prices, and in the absence of draconian taxes, land would be more available at lower prices.

I don't know if an absence of government intervention would mean more drag strips or not. A favorite theory of mine is that cars would soon become obsolete in favor of personal aircraft. That process was begun (by some of those same post WWII thrill seekers) and quickly squelched by the evil Civil Aeronautics Board in the 1950's. It will still happen, once government is gotten out of the way. And then, it won't be any time at all before aero hot rodders will be racing 'em.

Feeling the need for speed.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Darwin Was Wrong

Early last week, I got into a little fender-bender on the way home from work. Not much damage, but a little. You should see the other car. That silly plastic bumper broke clean off into several pieces. So, I'm taking the car to the body shop tomorrow to have the deep scratch fixed up and repainted.

I went to the shop Friday to set myself up with an appointment, and scope out the joint. Not having had a traffic dust-up since the mid-1960's, I don't know any body men. My insurance company recommended a shop in North Hollywood, so that's where I went.

Turns out I like the owner. He talks straight and is in his late fifties, so he's been around the block a couple of times. He has an East European accent, and fairly reeks of old world craftsmanship.

This leads me to ask myself why I find these things so comforting.

I've spent a lot of time fooling around with cars and motorcycles, including some years working in and managing gas stations. Years ago, I knew a young line mechanic who claimed he didn't care if he got the job done correctly, as long as he could get it done fast. If he could beat the Flat Rate Book's time, he'd get paid as a percentage of the flat rate, rather than his hourly salary.

Follow me on this, for those of you who aren't familiar. The mechanic's Flat Rate book shows how many hours it should take to do a particular repair. Let's say a brake job, four wheels, no complications, should take 2 hours, according to the book. Let's say my mechanic friend blows through the job in one hour. Instead of getting $30 for two hours' work, he gets the same $30 for an hour's work. He can go on and do another brake job in the next hour and get another $30. Not all auto shops work this way, but some do.

My friend, in order to work this quickly, had to blow through the job, eschewing several checks and cautions in his work. Anything to get the car out of his bay fast, and without any immediately noticeable problems. If something goes wrong day after tomorrow, bring it back; he'll fix it for free.

Often, the work goes well, with no problems. Occasionally, a customer has a problem and returns the car. My friend would then fix it more carefully, at no additional charge. Rarely, the customer has an accident caused by an incomplete repair, but responsibility doesn't come back to the mechanic. Often, to avoid the hassle of losing his car for another day, the customer just drives it as it is, problem and all. The Mechanic wins in almost every case.

Knowing this, I try to do as much of my mechanical work as I can, myself. Otherwise, I look for the old bear, the mechanic who's been at it for thirty, forty years and who takes pride in his ability and knowledge. He'd rather do the job right, than fast. When I find someone like that, he gets all my patronage.

The older guys seem to have grown up in a time when the work ethic was better--not all of them, to be sure, but many. The youngsters now in their twenties and thirties grew up in an atmosphere of quick self satisfaction and spur-of-the-moment pragmatism.

This body shop guy reads like a man who takes pride in a good job. I also met his son, who is a shop manager, and he actually seems the same way. Enthusiastic. Proud of his work.

I hope those work attitudes don't die out.

One's life is best summed up in the quality of his work.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Friday, October 26, 2007

Reporter Ignores Facts, Shows Bias

We're becoming so accustomed to "news reporters" writing opinion pieces and editors placing them on news pages, that the above headline (mine) seems bland.

I haven't read the LA Times for,well, somewhat over ten years, but some leftist at my office brings them in and leaves sections in the "reading room." Since I've recently heard from Larry Elder's show that they've actually had a few un- or less-biased stories lately, I checked it out.

I stumbled into this story in the California section from the 18th of October, this year: "Gov. ignores gun lobby, and condors get lift." George Skelton, writer of the piece, ought to be thrown out on his kiester for having written such a piece of trash--or the editor should be given a mop and told he was hired into the wrong department. Or both.

While I wish none of earth's critters ill, I honestly can't work up a huge amount of sympathy for the California condor. While they look ever so majestic soaring above, even Mr Skelton admits they're ugly when seen up close. And they are. Even the babies are ugly--I saw one once at the San Diego Zoo. They look like vultures on steroids.

Our neo-socialist, neo-conservative Guber, Arnold Schwarzeneggar (a far better action movie star than politician), has signed legislation banning the use of lead bullets for hunting, in favor of copper. Since the Times didn't cite any studies proving that lead is the thing that's causing the low condor population, I'm very skeptical. Also, I'm wondering if they just aren't suited for life in today's world. Even Mr Skelton admits that they seem prehistoric.

If California condors as a species will be saved, it'll be by the efforts of men working very hard at it--not by government edicts. The condors don't seem to care very much. Honestly, I don't either.

I'm not a hunter, being a city boy and all, and so I don't know what might be lost by replacing the lead in bullets with copper. Copper is soft (but not as soft as lead, and copper is heavy, but not as heavy as lead. I do know that government has no business legislating the content of bullets.

Our idiot Guber also signed a bill requiring that semi-automatic handguns must have their chambers stamped with the make, model and serial number of the weapon, so that each shell casing expelled will be stamped with these markings. To help police solve crimes, they if the criminals actually use guns registered to themselves!

Back to new bias: throughout the story, as you can readily see by reading through it, we can readily see the writers opinion. "The gun lobby ranted...." "Schwarzeneggar would have been hammered--and justifiably--if he had vetoed these two bills." (italics mine) "He (Schwarzeneggar) was pandering...." "....22 caliber lead bullets....should be the next step."

The guy might have a point, regarding the lead poisoning of carrion eating birds, but what we need is the facts.....just the facts.

We report. We decide. You shut up, turn off your mind, and absorb.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag california

Sunday, October 21, 2007

You Coulda Had A V-8

As I've mentioned many times, because of all the bureaucratic foolishness in the evil Patriot Act, the equally evil TSA and Homeland Security in general, I've vowed to stay the hell off commercial airliners except in the most dire emergencies. What constitutes a dire emergency? Hard to say. One hasn't come up yet. I suppose I'd fly if it was required by my job (not likely) and there was no other way.

A trip to Europe? We've been planning one (loosely) but the ongoing turn from historic playground to islamic wasteland tends to lessen the trip's desirability.

Perhaps a family emergency, but most of my family resides within driving distance.

The notion of having to beg permission of the government to travel at will is not only unConstitutional, but essentially evil and against everything for which America's Founders stood. Each elected representative who voted for the establishment of Homeland Security, the Patriot Act and every atrocity committed by their membership, by commission or omission, should be prosecuted to the fullest degree the law allows, for egregious violation of his Oath of Office.

Yesterday, there was yet another in a long line of incidents that illustrate the inconvenience that occurs when utterly incompetent bureaucratic parasites (but again, I repeat myself) attempt to do that is well beyond both the scope and mandate of government, and the intelligence and ability of the civil servant. They seem to be trying to provide security to individuals in a situation whose technological nature is far beyond the ken of the bureaucratic mind.

The situation, as described by Andrew Kirtzman in a WCBSTV story here, involved someone spilled tomato juice 'pon an xray machine.

A TSA thug said that 'twas a vendor who committed the spill, but government thugs lie. Additionally, if the alleged security of airports can be so easily interrupted, isn't that a problem in its own right?

I'd wager that 'twas actually one of the dopey civil servants who committed the horrid act, and I'd further wager that said thug will not be punished, with the possible exception of a verbal admonishment to be more careful next time. That is, if you want to put an xray machine out of commission to score a longer break, don't let anyone see you do it.

Meanwhile, hundreds of travelers were inconvenienced, and many probably missed their flights. Doubtless, millions of dollars have been lost by the airlines and by lost business.

It'd be nice to hear the airline corporation executives raise some hell about these very common delays caused by bureaucratic fumbling, but they're largely spineless empty suits and live in fear of even more draconian regulation.

They've killed Freedom! Those bastards!

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Giving Thieves a Free Hour To Work Their Magic

In a useless gesture designed to make parasitic politicians (but, I repeat myself) feel useful, algorians around the Stalag are calling for residents of Los Pueblos de Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and San Francisco to turn out their lights between 8 and 9PM today to save enough electricity to light 2500 residences for an entire year. So far, I've not been contacted to be one of those who is to receive a year's free power.

According to a Reuters story, lights in Alcatraz, the Los Angeles International Airport and the Golden Gate Bridge, along with most lights in city buildings (all with exceptions for safety considerations) will be turned off for this hour. Imagine how much more money we'd save if they did this during what the city sniggeringly refers to as "working hours."

This gives thieves and burglars an entire hour to work their magic in a more nearly ideal environment, and one can only imagine what sorts of things might go on during this hour in San Francisco!

El Pueblo de Los Angeles runs its own power operation, which was founded under the proposition that a city-owned power company, divorced from the profit motive, will cost consumers less and be more responsive to consumer demands. Of course, we all know how that worked out. Power is every bit as expensive in LA as it is anywhere else, and more expensive than most localities, and you can't get anyone on the phone. Power transmission is still done by means of unsightly and dangerous overhead wires instead of underground, as has been done in most surrounding areas for decades.

The real answer? Privatize.

Unfortunately, because of state and federal regulation, competition is not only nonexistent, but prohibited by law. Were the industry privatized and deregulated (truly deregulated), each household would be capable of picking and choosing among several power suppliers. We could shop price, or service, or even set up our own individual home power plant (as long as it doesn't disturb the neighbors).

Senor Antonio Vinaigrette, el Alcalde del Pueblo de Los Angeles, still maintains that a cure for all our power shortages is that we should replace out incandescent bulbs with rotini light fixtures, and just limit our use of electricity 'twixt the hours of 3PM and 7PM (or something like that). As we say in the Valley, "Like, I'm sure!"

It's now a little after 9PM and I still haven't been notified about my year of free power.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Thursday, October 18, 2007

It's A Dog's Life!

If you've been listening to news or talk radio these past couple of days, or watched any tv news shows, you've probably heard about the tears shed by Ellen Degenerate about this puppy, Iggy, she "adopted" from a private rescue shelter in Southern California.

The whole story was covered in the LA Times, here.

She cried and whimpered and admitted repeatedly that 'twas all her own fault, but why did they have to take Iggy away from her hairdresser's kids?

According to the story, Ellen adopted Iggy, got him shots, neutered and a chip, and had him trained. After a couple of weeks, she found that Iggy couldn't get along with her cats. She gave Iggy to her hairdresser and his family.

Problem was, the contract she signed required her to return the dog to the shelter, if for some reason she couldn't keep it. The shelter people picked Iggy up from the hairdresser's home and returned him to the shelter.

So, Ellen wants to know why they can't bend the rules: the hairdresser's children love Iggy. The shelter's policy is that they don't adopt small dogs to families with children under 14--kind of a bureaucratic, one-size-fits-all policy, as I see it, but 'twas in the contract and Ellen knew it.

The women who run the shelter have withstood every kind of abuse by phone, email and in person since Ellen made her televised plea. Tons of it. Death threats and the whole bag.

Let's step back a bit. Ellen Degenerate is a comedienne (a bad one, in my estimation), and an actress. She can switch on the crocodile tears. I think she staged this entire controversy deliberately out of anger over the shelter people having taken Iggy back. I think she knew what that outburst would do and wanted to punish the ladies at the shelter for not having acceded to her wish. How dare they!?

Hell hath no fury than a Hollywood leftist denied.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Monday, October 15, 2007

When "No Law" Means Some Laws

I was listening to Michael Medved this afternoon, intermittently, whenever I was in my car. At one point, I turned the radio on and heard him talking about islamic fascists. I think he was talking about some islamist recommending martyrdom, or something like that. Not terribly important to my point.

What was important was what he said immediately afterward. "There can be no debate over the fact that free speech is not absolute." Or something very like this.

Let's parse this just a little. "There can be no debate...." is a very interesting phrase. It's designed to cut off argument before it can be born. It's the very same phrase the algorians use to cut off discussions about "global warming" and discredit the "deniers." It's very insidious, the way this works. I don't buy it for an instant.

"....Over the fact that free speech is not absolute." I've heard variations of this phrase dozens of times in the past five years or so. It's usually conservatives that say it. Leftists, on the other hand, say they're for free speech, to counter the position of the conservatives, but they're lying.

So, let's see what the Bill of Rights says: Amendment the First: "Congress shall make no law....abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble...."

The Founders wrote that Amendment to counter the British tradition of prosecuting political dissent.The First Amendment serves to protect the purveyor of controversial expression; to protect the holder of unpopular opinion.

And Michael Medved, a radio talk show host, one of a very few conservative movie reviewers, and a writer, fully ignoring the letter of the Bill of Rights, has the freedom to say that the First Amendment doesn't mean what it says. I've also heard Sean Hannity express the same sentiment. He ought to be ashamed. If he and others continue to ignore the meaning of the Constitution, he may find himself limited as to what he can say, as might we all.

They do this while, out the other side of their mouths they disparage the leftists for suggesting that they ought to provide balance on their shows.

I'd suggest that we ought to hold to the letter and meaning of the Amendment absolutely, lest we let this precious freedom be gradually nibbled away.

They've killed Freedom! Those bastards!

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Let Them Snort Salt

In yet another step in the government's march to take over the rearing of children from their parents, the evil FDA is about to order toddler's cold medicines off the shelves, in the interest of protecting little children from the bungling stupidity of the adults who gave them life. According to a story in the Modesto (Stalag California) Bee, cowardly attorneys for drug makers are pulling the medicines off the shelves now, preempting FDA action.

Why, you might ask? Because an FDA report found 54 reports of child deaths linked to decongestants and 69 to antihistamines from 1969 to 2006, many of them younger than 2. That's a total of .... let's see....carry the one....123 dead babies years. While one must grieve the early death of even one youngster (unless it's a noisy one in a theater), where's the perspective? How many toddlers drowned in the bath in 37 years? A lot more than 123, I'll wager.

A more important thing to note is: how many toddlers have been helped by these medicines? A second thing about which to pay attention is: How many of the parents of the unfortunate babies were actually following the manufacturer's instructions? And a third: Just how much of the responsibility for bringing up our children are we willing to cede to a bungling, wasteful organization whose members' most urgent mission is to work as little as possible and retire with as large a pension as possible?

The solution offered? Stuff a rubber syringe full of salt water in the little tyke's nose to either drown him, collapse his lungs or rupture his bronchial tubes.

Fortunately, Modesto-area parents interviewed by the Bee's reporters seem to be more skeptical of this foolishness than, for example, people who live in El Pueblo de Los Angeles.

Granted, parents should carefully choose a pediatrician (I always get this mixed up: is a pediatrician a foot doctor?) and follow his advice. Some doctors believe these patent medicines are ineffective. Perhaps some of them are, but I'd rather the parents make the choices than Washington bureaucrats two intellectual steps away from the post office stamp window.

They've killed Freedom! Those bastards!

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Saturday, October 06, 2007

We're In A Drought, and The Glaciers Are Melting--Disaster or Opportunity?

I first became aware of Dr. Walter E Williams by having viewed the 1980 PBS documentary series, Free to Choose, by Dr. Milton Friedman. Dr. Friedman would give an economics "lesson" for the first half-hour of each episode, which was followed by a discussion with Dr. Friedman and a number of other intellectuals of the left and right. Dr. Williams was one of these people. Throughout the length of the series, Dr. Williams seemed consistently one of the more articulate members of a very prestigious group.

Since then, I've followed Dr. Williams' career as best I can. When I found out he writes a column, I started reading it. When I learned he occasionally subbed for Rush Limbaugh, when he takes a day off, and I learn that Dr. Williams is subbing, I make plans to listen.

Williams is almost always right on the money on most subjects, and his take on the global warming hoax. His latest statement on the subject can be found here.

I highly recommend the pamphlet "A Global Warming Primer," to which Dr. Williams refers, as it's a quick read, yet it's packed with facts that can be analyzed rationally (as opposed to the algorians' religious emotionalism).

Every month the algorians look more and more stupid.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Banking On Failure

I very recently switched to a new bank. My old institution was fine, but doesn't have a branch here in the San Fernando Valley. Sometimes you actually want to go there. My new bank is the one that reminds one of San Diego's Sea World.......Wamu the Killer Whale. Actually, I sort of prefer the more generic "Wash Mutt."

Our new arrangement--the one in which I let them store my money, and they let me have it as I need it--is already wearing a mite thin. I had an account at Wash Mutt once before, but unfortunately, there seems to have been a change in their branch operations, and not one for the better.

They've decided not to trust their clients.

They've decided to treat every client as if he is a criminal, and up to no good.

They've taken a number of pages from the American Paranoid Airport Book of Security. You open a door and enter. There's a second door that remains locked until the first door closes and locks. At this point, you're locked into a five-by-eight-foot cell.

What if something goes horribly wrong? There is no food nor water. You can see out--the cell is walled in with (presumably bulletproof) glass--and others can see in, and watch the claustrophobe scream and pound vainly 'pon the glass with bruised and bloody fists.

Then, you have to pass through a metal detector to get to the second door. Only Odin knows what will happen to you if you happen to have a particularly robust ring of keys hanging from your belt. Knockout gas? A trap door and a ride down a slippery duct to a pool of hungry crocks?
Next, if you are not wearing your Rodeo Cowboy's Association bull riding trophy belt buckle, you may proceed to the second door. If you've passed all the tests, you may enter and face the Minotaur.

Actually, he's a very old minotaur, usually with no horns and with a gray, balding scalp, and he's usually about 5'6" tall, with a bored, but strangely welcoming smile and a deceptively "Walmart greeter-like" aspect.

He's the Security Guard. Against all reason, he's also unarmed. No one says it, but they put him there to be the first one shot--a sacrificial herald, as it were--should all other devices fail. The guard gets shot, you push the alarm button. Simple.

I think they keep the line fairly long, to make the prospective robber get more and more nervous should he get by the Minotaur unscathed (and without having raised the alarm). Wash Mutt has cleverly introduced the DMV method of helping its clients: each time the length of the line increases by ten individuals, they send another teller on break.

At length, well after you've finished reading Atlas Shrugged, or whichever novel you've brought along to help pass the time, you get to greet the often-pretty smiling face of the empty-headed teller. She (sometimes he) might be very nice, and even smart as a whip, but Wash Mutt doesn't want smart tellers, they want tellers who'll follow procedure. Always.

Make every arrangement possible that your transaction is simple and that your deposit slip is in order: t's crossed and i's dotted, and that all arithmetic is correct. Miss Teller will know if you've added 9 and 3 and got 13. They're trained to see these things. If she ever misses one, it'll be caught by the Supervising Teller watching on the monitor behind the wall. The teller will then be fed to the crocks in the pool under the bank.

Exiting the bank is exactly the same as entering: two doors enclosing a little cell--except here, there's no metal detector. A word of caution, though. If you've passed through the first door, then remember something, you can't go back! You'd have to go through the second door, then return through the first entrance door, with all the dangers and pitfalls enclosed therein.

I already know that I don't like this kind of treatment. I don't know how long I'll remain a client of Wash Mutt.

Ok, here's the deal, and this is the same at all banks and most other business locations: nobody is armed there. As I mentioned, not even the Ancient Minotaur.

How long has it been since someone robbed a shooting range? A gun store?

In a shooting range, everyone has a gun. In a gun store, all the employees are armed and trained in firearm use. Were I desirous of committing armed robbery, a gun store would be the last place I'd think of going.

Banks have a lot of money inside, and no one inside has a gun. All the robber has to do is get past those damned doors. Thus, a bank is like a school: if the evil-doer can get inside the premises with a gun, he's free to kill as many as he wants, without fear of opposition.

Yet I, who have no intention of ever robbing a bank, have to put up with this inconvenience, not to mention the presumption of guilt, this impersonal (yet very personal) system imposes 'pon me and every other honest client.

Every year, hiding my cash under the mattress looks better and better.

Warm regards,

Col. Hogan
Stalag California