34 comments posted · 4 followers · following 0

5 years ago @ The Reality-Based Comm... - Nicknames · 0 replies · +5 points

I kinds like Twitler.

5 years ago @ The Reality-Based Comm... - The absolute norm of n... · 0 replies · +6 points

I've got to join the dissent on this comment. What happened this morning in VA bears no resemblance to any actions by our nation's forefathers, who had the courage and conviction to convene, formally declare independence and then back it up. The comparison to a lone nut-job taking pot-shots is unfair to the forefathers in the extreme.

I get it - we all hate Trump. Republicans hated Obama too. They had to live with his presidency for 8 years, so what did they do about it? Well there were some random acts of violence on their part too (e.g. Gifford) and I recall a lot of harsh criticism from this side for those who tried to justify it, but in the end the violence harmed more than helped their cause. Collectively, they spent those 8 years working as hard as they could to regain control over government through the ballot box. It wasn't always (more like ever) pretty but they succeeded. That's how it's done, Dems, time to get on with it!

6 years ago @ The Reality-Based Comm... - You're Fired! A short ... · 7 replies · 0 points

"The Congressional GOP will only decide to remove Trump if the polls – their reelection polls – are not just bad but catastrophic. There is a good chance of this."

From your point of view I have no doubt this seems plausible. From the Heartland perspective, not so much. How many Blue-state GOP Congresscritters' seats are in play? 'Cause Red-state support looks secure as ever from out here in the middle of it all. While I share a bit of your skepticism on the 52% probability prediction of completing his term for a variety of reasons (not the least likely of which is a CIA-sponsored assassination scenario -- blame it on Putin to up the chaos level -- what was that Rudy said before the election about it being the last? -- but I digress), a 2/3 majority for removal looks like a very long shot to me. I put the chances of pulling a Palin much higher than being removed, seeing that he's already pulled a string of Nixons with impunity, but what do I know?

Personally I'm ambivalent, having seen little to convince me Pence/Ryan would be much better.

6 years ago @ The Reality-Based Comm... - "Burying the lede": he... · 0 replies · +2 points

There are varying degrees on the spectrum between free-state everyone's on their own recognizance and police-state permission is required to take a dump. I'm personally not comfortable with the point on that line where cops kill citizens in broad daylight in front of witnesses over petty infractions with impunity. ymmv

6 years ago @ The Reality-Based Comm... - Some Words of Advice f... · 0 replies · +3 points

Indeed. One thing this life lesson drove home for me was how much depends upon integrity everywhere throughout a supply chain. One failed link and a pilot crashes and burns, or lead leeches out of pipes into the local water supply, or a chemical plant explosion levels a town, or an offshore oil well breaks and pollutes an entire gulf. Such failures aren't always so catastrophic, but they seldom lead to desirable outcomes. You never want to be the weak link whose integrity fails when others are depending on it, and if you're doing a job -- pretty much any job -- others are depending on it.

6 years ago @ The Reality-Based Comm... - Some Words of Advice f... · 2 replies · +5 points

Documentation is a powerful thing.

A little over twenty-five years ago when I was working for an avionics manufacturer, an upper-mid-level manager brought me a newly-built test panel needed to align a prototype autopilot which was undergoing certification. Flight tests were scheduled; the autopilot test panel had to ship immediately and the last scheduled carrier pickup of the day was due in forty minutes. The test panel needed a calibration certificate and then taken immediately to shipping. I got up to get the calibration procedure and the boss-man said "What are you doing? You don't understand! Give this panel a calibration cert and take it to shipping. Now!". I told him my signature only gets on that cert after I have done the work it certifies has been done, and that I could do the work and get it to shipping in time. He pounded on my bench and screamed threats of firing me for insubordination. With everyone in the lab watching, I calmly asked him to give me that order in writing. He fumed away to my manager's office to scream at him while I calibrated the test panel. The test panel was a modified standard design, and it turns out the standard altitude slew rates were quite a ways off-spec for the intended aircraft -- a critical parameter that must be matched to the aircraft's flight characteristics. I adjusted and certified the test panel and got it to shipping in time, then calmly walked into my manager's office (poor guy, but such is the lot of the corporate middle manager) and told him that if anything like that ever happened again I would immediately report it to the FAA.

Needless to say, the boss's boss had it in for me after that. My head on the chopping block the whole time, it took this notoriously powerful and much-feared man five years and a layoff to separate me from my employment there. In the meantime he tasked me with designing and programming an automated station to perform calibrations. Yup, I built and programmed the robot that took my job -- over twenty years ago! In doing so, I developed valuable skills for which other companies were willing to pay substantially more than I was making there. Win-win!

Years later when I was working at an independent lab we hired a guy who had long worked for this previous employer at another site, who told me he had heard of me standing up to this manager and sorely wished he had done the same. Years before he had been told to do the same thing and did as he was told out of fear of losing his job. The slew rates were unmatched to the aircraft, causing it to porpoise during flight test. The test pilot expected it to settle out and waited too long for it. A wing broke off and the plane crashed, killing the test pilot. I recalled that this had occurred shortly after I had been hired there and that there was much concern about the outcome of the FAA investigation. It was ruled pilot error for not disengaging the malfunctioning autopilot, which isn't technically wrong, but the problem that led to that pilot error could have been avoided had the proper and legally required protocols been followed (I doubt the FAA ever learned of the breach). I could see the pain and guilt in his face as he told me how he had agonized for years over the outcome of his decision to follow bad orders. I've never been happier for having done the right thing as I was on that day.

6 years ago @ The Reality-Based Comm... - Make America GOOD Again · 1 reply · +2 points

I take it you've never been homeless. You want me to worry about small-scale charitable food poisoning on behalf of someone whose alternative food source might likely be a dumpster? I would never hesitate for a moment to eat anything offered at a church, vfw hall or elks lodge, I've done it countless times. Should I be terrified of attending a pot-luck dinner sans government food inspectors? How far should this go? How about accepting a neighbor's invitation to dinner? What if they serve whatever's in the back of their pantry, perhaps out of date or maybe dangerous? Even if the food was good when they bought it, food storage is an issue. Just because I'm hungry doesn't mean I should get food poisoning. Is this a situation that should attract government regulation?

6 years ago @ The Reality-Based Comm... - Make America GOOD Again · 4 replies · +2 points

Politically aware since Nixon, I've seen this country survive and even flourish under a lot of truly bad government. It's going to be alright, Mr. Rowe. Like my grandmother always said, this too shall pass. Things are never as good or as bad as they seem. We, the people, collectively, are a lot stronger than our government. This is by design, and we should strive to keep it that way.

We've got each other's backs: Where the government's safety net wears holes large enough for our fellow man to fall through, our churches and fraternal organizations work together to fill them, even though we often have to fight against government to do so, like politicians who insist we must have a government permit and official inspectors in order to offer free meals to the homeless. When the government says it's a slap-on-the-wrist infraction or misdemeanor to occupy a very busy Wall street in protest while overcharging others with a slew of felonies for occupying an otherwise unoccupied bird sanctuary for the same purpose, we exercise the power of jury nullification. While the all-powerful federal government persists in holding a low side-effect non-toxic natural herbal remedy in schedule 1 against all evidence to the contrary, we work together at the grass-roots level to legalize it state by state. We the people are the government, so we can work around it where we need to. We endeavor to persevere, and I intend to keep on doing just that.

Thank you for this post and its friendly reminder that the collective GOOD starts with and depends upon our individual selves and our goodwill towards each other. The government can steal and consolidate our power for itself only by dividing us. Let us be wary of this and the corrupting influence of concentrated power. May we all join Brad Rowe in saying “Friend, it’s going to be OK. I’ve got your back and we are going to make American GOOD again.”

6 years ago @ The Reality-Based Comm... - Our electors, ourselves · 1 reply · +3 points

// They are well armed in general and I'm pretty sure would have the various armed forces on their side as well. //

Well yes, of course, because despite Mr. Guthman's protestations above that "We are the largest, most prosperous states. We have the bulk of the country's population.", everyone knows from whence the bulk of the population of our various armed forces comes, and why that is.

"Well armed in general" may actually be just a bit of an understatement. I wonder how many here can relate to the experience I've enjoyed many times, common as dirt in Middle America, of retiring to the back-pasture shooting range with your young adult children and their friends early in the afternoon before anyone has "had too many", looking on with only the slightest hint of trepidation as your pre-teen granddaughters participate in target practice with AR-15 style weapons. Yeah, we're well armed all right. If you get me, my daughter or son-in-law can pry the weapon from my cold dead fingers and carry on the fight, and if you get them, their 10 and 12 year-old daughters can do the same.

6 years ago @ The Reality-Based Comm... - Theology you can use · 0 replies · +3 points

“Let’s teach them a lesson if they ever show up here,”

Well, that might be an Islamic terrorist, or more likely, a Dylan Roof or some generic school shooter expecting a defense-free zone in which to carry out their carnage. Mr. Rector may call that ignorant irrational fear but it does happen from time to time at places like Liberty University.

When 6000 ISIS fighters from Mosul take over Lynchburg VA, Mr. Wimberley's point will no longer be undermined by its own hyperbole.