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Mar 12, 2013

"Gun Control" terminology

I am officially worn out from listening to politicians and the media talking about gun control. Don't get me wrong I am all about responsible gun ownership. In fact I believe that all of the existing laws regarding the ownership of firearms should be enforced. But that is not what I am writing about today. My concern is that people in the media and government who speak about gun control have no idea of what they are talking about. What? Don't know what they are talking about? They use terms popularized by their peers without any knowledge of the subject matter. Here is what I mean....


Here are some firearms terminologies used by “pro gun control” folks and more importantly, the actual definitions:

"Gun Control" is a learned methodology which covers every aspect of firearms storage, transport, loading, discharging and unloading. The primary objectives being to maintain continuous physical security, control and retention of the weapon, exercise muzzle discipline, position the weapon and operator in the most stable and safe shooting position for accuracy, discharge the weapon at a controllable rate of fire that the conditions and equipment will safely allow and ensure the safety of fellow shooters and other personnel who may be present within the area.

Magazines are not the same as "clips". A clip is a feeding device used on early weapons to assist in the loading of a magazine. (stripper clip, en bloc clip) a magazine is a containment and feeding device which holds cartridges in proximity to the action and facilitates chambering of the cartridge.

"High capacity" is a relative term. Higher in comparison to what?

A "bullet" is not the same thing as a cartridge. It is in fact one of four components that make up a cartridge. (a cartridge consists of a bullet, case, powder charge and primer) the bullet is the part of the cartridge that acts as a projectile and upon ignition of the powder charge leaves the barrel and travels toward the point of aim.

“Automatic” is very different from semi-automatic.

"Assault Weapon" is an ambiguous term. (a person moving toward my position in a threatening manner with a baseball bat in his hands is carrying an assault weapon)

That being said, an educated spokesperson in the media or politician looking to actually enhance the safety of the general public and curb illegal use of firearms might say something like this:

"I am here today to speak to you about responsible firearms ownership and use. It has come to my attention that firearms, much like other tools, can be dangerous and cause serious injury or death when used improperly. To reduce the danger to yourself and those around you, I encourage responsible firearm owners to maintain strict physical security, control and retention of the weapon and ammunition, exercise muzzle discipline, discharge the weapon only when safe to do so and at a controllable rate of fire that the location, conditions and equipment will safely allow and be mindful of the safety of fellow shooters and other personnel who may be present within the area. This means that in some places such as schools, post offices, restaurants, supermarkets, malls, office buildings and other locations where the discharge of firearms may present a danger to personnel who may be unfamiliar with firearms you will not be allowed to publicly display or discharge your firearms.

Those persons who illegally obtain, illegally use or demonstrate irresponsible firearms security, storage, handling or use will be criminally prosecuted to the fullest extent of existing laws related to firearms ownership, possession, use and any other applicable ordinance.

It is obvious that any device, including firearms, can be used in a manner inconsistent with the laws of the land, morals and common sense. However, the weapon is just a tool and ultimately, the person who chooses to possess and use the weapon (legally or illegally) must be held accountable for their actions.”

Yeah, I know... it will never happen. But doesn't it make more sense than the normal "gun control" news headline?

That’s my opinion. What do you think?

Feb 7, 2013

digital written communication

Digital written communication (text messaging, sms, email) is one of the many tools of the devil. You know it is true. These three ways of avoiding face to face communication have caused a steady erosion in the ability of people to communicate over the last 20 years.


Many people are so enslaved by the convenience of text messaging that they avoid having difficult (or enjoyable) conversations with others. Lots of people I meet and deal with can no longer communicate face to face or verbally (on a phone call). People send text messages for things that should never be sent in a text.

Have you ever sat down for a meal with someone who spent the entire time texting? Did it irritate you? I ask myself and sometimes I ask the person: “why did you want to meet with me if you spent all your time paying attention to your iphone5 with the new 6.0 software?”

Real face to face (or phone) conversations have meaning and the ability to express feelings. Text messages, emails and sms send data. Cold, mechanical, unfeeling data.

Here are some examples of appropriate use of text messages:

• Sending gps coordinates to make sure the bomb dropped from a B2 stealth bomber hits the correct enemy bunker.
• You are running 15 minutes late for a meeting and you are in a noisy place.
• Ask your spouse to also get some milk and eggs when they go to the market.
• What was the address for the restaurant?
• What time was the meeting moved to?

Here are examples of when a text message is not appropriate

• Happy birthday!
• Congratulations on the promotion.
• Merry Christmas (Hanukah, Kwanza, etc)
• I’m sorry to hear about your dad passing.
• I just wanted to say thanks for…..

Bottom line: do not let digital communication take over your life. Let it help you when you need to send data. Go ahead and send that report, gps coordinates, pictures from your vacation, or spreadsheets. But do not allow it to take the place of spending quality face time with family, friends, clients or business associates. Some easy things to do to break the i-device cycle:

• Have a no i-device policy when you sit down to dinner with your family or friends.
• Play cards or a board game with friends instead of angry birds alone on your couch.
• Have a beer at a bar with a neighbor instead of checking in on facebook.
• Go to a museum or the park with your kids instead of standing in front of the TV playing wii.
• Make a phonecall to an old friend instead of sending a “happy birthday” text.

You know what you need to do. So do it. You’ll be glad you did. I know I am.

That’s my opinion. What do you think?

Jan 23, 2013

guns, assault weapons and people

Are you getting tired of the constant discussion over gun violence? I am. In fact I am sick f hearing about it in the news every day. School shootings are a shameful occurrence. There is no excuse for people using any kind force (gun or otherwise) to intimidate or harm kids in school. That being said, what the heck is wrong with the people who are doing these things. The AR-15 rifle used in the school shootings in Connecticut is not responsible for the deaths of the kids. The shooter is the person who is responsible. And let’s not forget the lady who allowed her mentally ill son to access the weapon. It’s a shame they are both dead. If they were still alive they should receive the death sentence. The mom for being dumb and naïve and the son for being sick in the head.


Lots of people die every day. (Innocent ones too) Diseases, suicide, and automobile accidents are just a few of the causes of death that take more lives than “gun violence” every year. But you know why you never hear those stories… that stuff is not exciting enough and does not make for riveting news or grand speeches.

If the media and politicians really wanted to save lives, they would focus on the things that are really killing lots of Americans. (see previous paragraph) But let’s face the facts. Media and politicians want top billing and exciting stories and riveting speeches that polarize people and cause disagreements.

When was the last time any politician said: “to save lives and end the constant stream of needless deaths, Americans need to eat right, stop smoking, exercise and drive safely” (I have never heard that speech.)

I guess the media and politicians don’t really have my best interests in mind. They have their best interests in mind. More viewers, readers or listeners mean more ad revenue and fatter bank accounts for the media. That is why when the story bleeds, it leads. Politicians rely on self serving tactics and run the issue up the flag pole, see who cheers and sells their constituents on the fact that they are the pro-gun (or anti-gun), pro-abortion (or anti abortion), pro-health care (or anti-healthcare) candidate that you should vote for. Their objective is to get re-elected and continue to wield influence and power as they please.

Back to guns. There are already tons of gun laws on the books in every state of this nation. Most of which are just not being enforced. Gun control is not the answer. Enforcing existing gun laws is the answer.

… just my opinion in the 714. What do you think?

Aug 22, 2010

What college freshmen are thinking about (or not thinking about)

Just food for thought: This year's college freshmen have a different view of the world when compared to my peers... I copied this from:   http://www.beloit.edu/mindset/2013.php

The Beloit College Mindset List for the Class of 2013

Most students entering college for the first time this fall were born in 1991.

1.For these students, Martha Graham, Pan American Airways, Michael Landon, Dr. Seuss, Miles Davis, The Dallas Times Herald, Gene Roddenberry, and Freddie Mercury have always been dead.

2.Dan Rostenkowski, Jack Kevorkian, and Mike Tyson have always been felons.

3.The Green Giant has always been Shrek, not the big guy picking vegetables.

4.They have never used a card catalog to find a book.

5.Margaret Thatcher has always been a former prime minister.

6.Salsa has always outsold ketchup.

7.Earvin "Magic" Johnson has always been HIV-positive.

8.Tattoos have always been very chic and highly visible.

9.They have been preparing for the arrival of HDTV all their lives.

10.Rap music has always been main stream.

11.Chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream has always been a flavor choice.

12.Someone has always been building something taller than the Willis (née Sears) Tower in Chicago.

13.The KGB has never officially existed.

14.Text has always been hyper.

15.They never saw the “Scud Stud” (but there have always been electromagnetic stud finders.)

16.Babies have always had a Social Security Number.

17.They have never had to “shake down” an oral thermometer.

18.Bungee jumping has always been socially acceptable.

19.They have never understood the meaning of R.S.V.P.

20.American students have always lived anxiously with high-stakes educational testing.

21.Except for the present incumbent, the President has never inhaled.

22.State abbreviations in addresses have never had periods.

23.The European Union has always existed.

24.McDonald's has always been serving Happy Meals in China.

25.Condoms have always been advertised on television.

26.Cable television systems have always offered telephone service and vice versa.

27.Christopher Columbus has always been getting a bad rap.

28.The American health care system has always been in critical condition.

29.Bobby Cox has always managed the Atlanta Braves.

30.Desperate smokers have always been able to turn to Nicoderm skin patches.

31.There has always been a Cartoon Network.

32.The nation’s key economic indicator has always been the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

33.Their folks could always reach for a Zoloft.

34.They have always been able to read books on an electronic screen.

35.Women have always outnumbered men in college.

36.We have always watched wars, coups, and police arrests unfold on television in real time.

37.Amateur radio operators have never needed to know Morse code.

38.Belarus, Moldova, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Armenia, Latvia, Georgia, Lithuania, and Estonia have always been independent nations.

39.It's always been official: President Zachary Taylor did not die of arsenic poisoning.

40.Madonna’s perspective on Sex has always been well documented.

41.Phil Jackson has always been coaching championship basketball.

42.Ozzy Osbourne has always been coming back.

43.Kevin Costner has always been Dancing with Wolves, especially on cable.

44.There have always been flat screen televisions.

45.They have always eaten Berry Berry Kix.

46.Disney’s Fantasia has always been available on video, and It’s a Wonderful Life has always been on Moscow television.

47.Smokers have never been promoted as an economic force that deserves respect.

48.Elite American colleges have never been able to fix the price of tuition.

49.Nobody has been able to make a deposit in the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI).

50.Everyone has always known what the evening news was before the Evening News came on.

51.Britney Spears has always been heard on classic rock stations.

52.They have never been Saved by the Bell

53.Someone has always been asking: “Was Iraq worth a war?”

54.Most communities have always had a mega-church.

55.Natalie Cole has always been singing with her father.

56.The status of gays in the military has always been a topic of political debate.

57.Elizabeth Taylor has always reeked of White Diamonds.

58.There has always been a Planet Hollywood.

59.For one reason or another, California’s future has always been in doubt.

60.Agent Starling has always feared the Silence of the Lambs.

61.“Womyn” and “waitperson” have always been in the dictionary.

62.Members of Congress have always had to keep their checkbooks balanced since the closing of the House Bank.

63.There has always been a computer in the Oval Office.

64.CDs have never been sold in cardboard packaging.

65.Avon has always been “calling” in a catalog.

66.NATO has always been looking for a role.

67.Two Koreas have always been members of the UN.

68.Official racial classifications in South Africa have always been outlawed.

69.The NBC Today Show has always been seen on weekends.

70.Vice presidents of the United States have always had real power.

71.Conflict in Northern Ireland has always been slowly winding down.

72.Migration of once independent media like radio, TV, videos and compact discs to the computer has never amazed them.

73.Nobody has ever responded to “Help, I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.”

74.Congress could never give itself a mid-term raise.

75.There has always been blue Jell-O.
 
 
list courtesy of:  http://www.beloit.edu/mindset/2013.php

Aug 21, 2010

old friends

I was chatting on IM with a friend yesterday and discovered a long lost connection. In 1999 a really great friend had moved to Japan and I had lost touch with him over the years. This was a person that I had gone to school with since kindergarten and we had hung out all through our early 20’s. But as things changed for both of us, we had lost touch.


During our initial conversation by email my long lost / newly reacquainted friend commented on what a shame it was that we had let so many years go by without taking the time to stay in touch. He was right. We had both been too busy with our ever changing lives to stay in touch.

I felt ashamed. I vow to do what it takes to keep those valuable friendships alive and be a better friend to my friends.

Aug 20, 2010

Care for a Double Dip?

Double dips are great for ice cream but not for recessions... Our economy is currently stalling out again because of all of the ridiculous activities on the part of the citizens and our federal government. Deficit spending, lack of accountability on the part of members of congress and the house of representatives, apathy on the part of citizens when it comes to voting or community activism.....

How can we get out of this situation? I am glad you asked.... that is a great question. Here are some answers:

1.) as citizens, we need to pay attention. Our elected officials don't always do what they are appointed to do (City of Bell??) We need to get involved and get prepared for the hard times ahead.

2.) We need to follow politics and vote: this will encourage our leaders in government (city, state, and national) to do their jobs. If they don’t we need to vote them out of office and get new ones in who will do the peoples work.

3.) We need to support our national interest and stop supporting our enemies abroad. (buy American when possible and reduce our dependence on foreign energy)

Bottom line, as Americans we need to choose our actions to support our country and deny our enemies by any means necessary to overcome this crappy situation.

We are currently standing at an economic precipice…. At our current rate of spending, our federal deficit will bankrupt our country in a matter of 1-2 years. If that happens, no country will be willing to hold US debt. (for example, the US currently owes China 2 TRILLION dollars) Every dollar our economy produces gets chewed up by taxes and those taxes are being spent to pay interest to China!!!!

We need to get elected officials to understand that they need to spend LESS than the total of all revenues (Taxes) If they don’t get the picture and start doing what is right. We will pay the price when our economy collapses.

That’s my opinion. What do you think?

May 10, 2010

Bailout? I think not.

Everyone keeps talking about the "Government Bailout" of the big banks and wall street companies. Why does everyone have such a difficult time recognizing theft and criminal activity when they see it?


I grew up in East Los Angeles. I know crime when I see it:

Between 2000 and 2007, the banking institutions in America with virtually zero oversight from both mortgage guarantee operations (Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac) and zero interference from the federal government made millions of loans to people they knew had no way to pay back the borrowed money. Each time they made these loans, they then sold the loans to Wall Street as “mortgage backed securities” all along they made billions in interest, commissions and origination fees. Then, in 2007 and 2008 when the entire house of cards collapsed, the banks decided to just stop making loans. This is the strange part: Banks make money by taking the money you deposit in your savings, checking and money market accounts and lending it out to people and businesses who want to borrow it. The difference between the interest they charge on borrowed money and the interest they pay you while your money is on deposit is profit. This profit when combined with earnings on invested money is the bank’s revenue. Since they were not making any loans, and all of their investments were losing value, they were not making money…. Right?

Wrong… the banks told the federal government that they would not be able to survive unless they were given hundreds of billions in TARP loans. Then when the federal government gave them the billions of our tax payer money, with no way to track where the money went or what it was used for the banks simply had big parties, paid huge bonuses and waited for the stock market to crash. This happened in the first week of March 2009. (The DJIA fell from 14,000 in October 2007 to 6,600 in March of 2009.) The beauty of the situation was that the banks and financial institutions caused the crash by selling investors these broken loans, then used our tax dollars (in the form of TARP loans) to buy stocks and investments at the very bottom of the market beginning in March of 2009. It was a beautiful play by the banks. Then finally in March of 2010, our elected officials emerged from every back room in Washington, came forward and “DEMANDED ACCOUNTABILITY” from every bank and financial institution that borrowed TARP funds. The banks responded by saying "NO" to accountability and all of a sudden, they started paying back the hundreds of billions in TARP money they had borrowed in 2007 and 2008. If the banks were so broke where were they getting the money to pay back these TARP loans?

What the hell? here is my question: Why was the money handed out without any accountability then after the scam was pulled and the banks had made trillions in gains from our “borrowed” tax dollars now everyone who had signed the legislation that gave the banks our money in the first place all of a sudden demand accountability?

Simple… The big banks and financial institutions own and control our elected officials. Every elected official depends on these kinds of scams to provide money for kickbacks that pay for everything from election contributions to all manner of criminal debauchery found at every level of public office.

Since most people choose to remain uneducated and simply refuse to recognize this activity by banks, financial institutions and elected officials as criminal activity, the guilty keep on doing it. The elected officials who are honest wind up getting set up and black balled or kicked out of office for ridiculous scandals.

People really need to wake up. Tell a friend about this blog.... maybe some lights will go on in people's heads!!

That is my opinion…What do you think?

May 9, 2010

Big Oil makes a mess and we get to clean it up.

I look at the incredible destruction to the ecosystem and businesses in the Gulf of Mexico caused by the ongoing oil spill caused by BP and wonder…

Will the ecosystem ever be able to recover?

What will be the overall economic impact to the region?

How much will it cost to clean up?

Will BP be held accountable for the careless practices that led to the spill?


To find the answers I look back 23 years to Exxon Valdez / Alaska and realize:

The ecosystem will never fully recover in my lifetime.

The economic impact will be measured in decades and cost us billions & billions

It will cost us hundreds of millions to contain and clean up the mess.

BP will in essence be let off the hook with a small fine and a few stern words. They will not be held accountable for thier actions.

Well, after all big oil practically owns all three branches of our federal, state and local government. Why would a congressman, senator, representative or any other elected official want to piss in the Kool-Aid of the company that funded his election campaign, pays for his yacht and vacation properties and keeps all of that money flowing into his bank accounts in the Cayman Islands? The answer of course is that he wouldn’t think of upsetting big oil by making them take financial and moral responsibility for their careless actions.

So that just leaves us to clean up this mess.

What do you think?

May 8, 2010

American Flags and Immigrants

I am growing increasingly concerned with the issue of immigrant rights in this country. Our leaders at home, school and in government forget where we live, who we are as a people and thier duites to those who follow or listen to them.

I am not an opponent of immigrant rights. I am an opponent of ILLEGAL immigrant rights. If you are breaking the law by simply being in the country, then you are breaking the law and therefore you have no rights. People who are here illegally do not deserve any of rights that citizens and legal residents are entitled to because they are breaking the law by being here.

This week, students in a California school were sent home for wearing t-shirts displaying American flags. AMERICAN flags! The most ridiculous part of this is the fact that it was the teacher and principal of the school who were listening to latino students who sent the students home. Sure, the students who were sent home were wearing thier American flag shirts on May 5th (cinco de mayo) and were making a statment. but come on... what were the teacher and principal thinking?

The citizens and LEGAL residents of this country need to get it straight. We are all Americans. We may all be from somewhere else (in fact we are all from somewhere else) but when we are here in these United States, we need to recognize and respect our country. This country. USA.

You can be proud of your heritage, traditions and family history and also be proud to be an American.

That's my opinion... what do you think?