Parade Formation

Which, it’s unusual to see jets configured for landing in parade formation, flying over a parade, at that!

This is my hometown, typical small town Americana, 4th of July parade stuff. Indeed, over the years, I’ve marched in the the parade a time or two. Some of you readers have as well!

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Bicentennial Naval Avaiation

O ye that love mankind! Ye that dare oppose, not only the tyranny, but the tyrant, stand forth! Every spot of the old world is overrun with oppression. Freedom hath been hunted round the globe. Asia, and Africa, have long expelled her.—Europe regards her like a stranger, and England hath given her warning to depart. O! receive the fugitive, and prepare in time an asylum for mankind. – Thomas Paine, Common Sense 1776

1976 was the 200 birthday of our fine republic and was handily and enthusiastically commemorated by our friends (and perhaps many of the gentle readers) at NAVAIR. 
As part of the celebrations here are a couple of Bicentennial schemes (I won’t bother captioning Thomas our loyal readers already know):









I was born in ’77 so I missed the Bicentennial the year previous. I realized that I’d be 97 by the time of the 300th birthday. Hopefully I’ll be around for it.

Happy Birthday America. Thank you to all those that made it possible and continue to do so.

A Republic if you can keep it indeed…




We’ve been having some clouds, which is nice in that it keeps the heat down to below 110F, and gives us lovely sunsets. The only drawback is we can’t see the Bethlehem star tonight.

Sunset (1)Sunset (2)Sunset (3)Sunset (4)Sunset (5)Sunset (6)

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Daily Dose of Splodey- Gettysburg Edition

On this day, July 3, in 2000, the 137th anniversary of the end of the bloodiest battle of the Civil War, CDI brought down the National Tower.

Notice the interesting interleaving rod construction of the tower, reminiscent of US battleships fighting tops during the inter-war era.


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“Let Facts be Submitted to a Candid World”

But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security… To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

When one thinks of our wide-open borders, and the IRS, EPA, and Justice Department being weaponized to persecute political opposition extralegally, Obamacare, the Drone Memo, the race-baiting agitation engendered, the massive numbers of apparatchik “czars” having been appointed, the militarization of law enforcement, the violation of our 4th Amendment rights by NSA and FBI, and (if one substitutes “Muslim extremist” for “Indian”) the influx into our cities and towns of violent men who are sworn enemies of our country and our people, the above text resonates quite loudly even when the Obama Administration replaces that of Mad King George.  Unfit ruler of a free people, indeed.  No coincidence that the demand for political correctness has destroyed that candid world.



Germany: WW2 Panther tank seized from pensioner’s cellar – BBC News

Police in northern Germany have seized a World War Two tank which was being kept in a pensioner’s cellar.

The Panther tank was removed from the 78-year-old’s house in the town of Heikendorf, along with a variety of other military equipment, including a torpedo and an anti-aircraft gun, Der Tagesspiegel website reports. It wasn’t an easy job to get it all out – the army had to be called in with modern-day tanks to haul the Panther from its cellar. It took about 20 soldiers almost nine hours to extract the tank – which was without its tracks – and push it onto a low-loader, the report says. As the surreal scene unfolded, local residents gathered at the end of the driveway to watch.

Prosecutors in the nearby city of Kiel are investigating whether the man’s military collection violates Germany’s War Weapons Control Act. But his lawyer says the weapons are no longer functional, therefore shouldn’t be restricted.

via Germany: WW2 Panther tank seized from pensioner’s cellar – BBC News.

Damn busybodies always sticking their noses into other people’s business.

Look, if it took 9 hours to get it out of there, it probably wasn’t causing the neighbors too much trouble.



Confederate Flag “Controversy”

I’ve said a bit about the Confederate Flag bullsh…err “controversy” but nothing I could ever pen can match the pen of Hizzoner. Turns out our man Lex was years ahead of his time about this too and because you cared enough to start reading this Imma let him do it: 

Neptunus Lex: The Civil War

By lex, on April 18th 2010
I grew up in Virginia , as some of you may know, and only really had my first exposure to New Yorkers in situ as a member of the Naval Academy fencing team. New York City was and probably still is the center of the U.S. fencing, with top notch universities such as NYU and Columbia contributing talent to such elite schools as the New York Fencing Club and New York Athletic Club. I hadn’t formed much of a opinion about New Yorkers until I firsts traveled up there and saw first hand the press and scrum of teeming millions.
I learned that they had already formed an opinion of me.
Where are you from, a national champion asked me as we were cooling down over beer and pizza at a local tavern, and when I told them he continued,”Are you a bigot?”
There’s a lot of that sort of examined thinking going on, as well as some perhaps unintentional psychological insights in Frank Rich’s latest screed in the New York Times: “Welcome to Confederate History Month.”
In “Race and Reunion,” the definitive study of Civil War revisionism, the historian David W. Blight documents the long trajectory of the insidious campaign to erase slavery from the war’s history and reconfigure the lost Southern cause as a noble battle for states’ rights against an oppressive federal government. In its very first editorial upon resuming publication in postwar 1865, The Richmond Dispatch characterized the Civil War as a struggle for the South’s “sense of right under the Constitution.” The editorial contained “not a single mention of slavery or black freedom,” Blight writes. That evasion would be a critical fixture of the myth-making to follow ever since.”
Slavery was indeed a national birth stain, and the effort to erase it cost hundreds of thousands of valiant lives in both sides of the Mason Dixon line. But just like the hardscrabble abolitionists of yore, modern northerners presume a sort of actionable moral and cultural superiority over the southern cousins. They do so while maintaining a deliberately blind eye to the kind of historical abuses of labor in northern factory towns and city ghettos that would have made an overseer blush for shame. They do so while eliding crosses burnt in Boston or the cracked skulls in Queens. It makes them feel good about themselves, even as they extend the smothering hand of well-intentioned government over the lives of individual people.
In the post-civil rights era, modern liberals tended to think of southerners – when they bothered to think about them at all – as crackers, hicks, and most of all racists. This is a useful exercise for the northern liberal; When you’ve presumed I’ll will on the part of an opponent, you are free to do whatever is necessary to complete his destruction, and do so with a clear conscience. Liberals prefer to sort southerners into one of two classes, victims and oppressors, the first to be made into dependents and the second to be demonized.
And they say southerners lack nuance.
Ronald Reagan changed the American politics landscape fundamentally back in 80s, as an admirer with a fundamentally different vision of what the US should be admits. He did so partly with a “Southern Strategy” that turned Yellow Dog Democrats into Republican voters. Rich, and many of his fellow travelers, continue to despise southern yokels who “vote against their self interest” by declining to graciously accept their government handouts and shut the hell up, leaving their betters to decide precisely how much of the bread wrung from the sweat of their brows they may be allowed to keep.
Thus, in line with the whole thrust of human history – at least until we began our national experiment in personal liberty – does one tyranny exchange itself for another.
To deny that slavery played a part in our Civil War would be to engage in denial for its own sake. But the slave owning class was never more than about 10% of a population disadvantaged region that sent at least a million of their 9 million citizens to war in order to preserve pre-negotiated rights. Some 15% of these men died in battle or through disease, another 30,000 died as federal prisoners and their survivors left no more than 150,000 on the field to surrender after Appomattox.
There was always more to the south than slavery – or racism, for that matter – and there is much more still, no matter the dyspepsia it might cause people like Frank Rich to see it in action. There is faith. There was and is a deep and abiding affection for the land, a sentiment that must puzzle those living in rent controlled apartments. There are traditions of gentility and manners that mystify on city dwellers who don’t want to see: Well bred teenagers still say “yes ma’am ” to an octogenarian waitress. There is also a fierce independence that harkens back to an earlier rebellion and a tradition of martial valor that remains to this day. One of my favorite bumper stickers as a young man was the one which said, “We don’t care how you do it up North.” And we didn’t. You go your way, leave ours to us.

And go in peace.
Faulkner wrote of the south that “The past isn’t dead. It isn’t even in the past.” The northerners I fenced against used me to chide me that we in the south had never given up fighting the Civil War.
Neither, it turns out, have they.

Pretty much somes up my 2 cents about the thing.

I grew up in what could be called “southern” Illinois. Being bi-racial myself, I hadn’t really experienced what could be called “racism.” Which isn’t to say it didn’t exist, my sister on the other hand (because she looks darker skinned) was once called a “nigger” by another student after school. We were shocked and upon confronting the kid and parent at school, in the principals office, the parent had simply said that his son used the wrong slur.

I’ll never know what that experience meant to may sis but that has stayed with me since. 

Now, having lived in the morgen part of the state, the more “Liberal” and “progressive” for quite a while, I’ve noticed the same attitude they have against those from the south that Lex wrote about those 5 years ago.

Not really familiar with Civil War history I’m not quite sure what the Confederate Flag means. Hell, that’s not even the issue I see. Some northern a still have a bigoted view towards those south of the Mason-Dixon and that’s what the whole “controversy” is about.

On the his side, Lex is absolutely right. Based on manners etc I know when I’m in the south. Everyone is very very polite. Coming back on a flight back to Chicago last year I knew I was on the correct flight because one of my fellow passengers treated the flight crew with arrogant disdain. The FA had asked him to put his laptop away and his retort was “it isn’t a laptop is an iPad.”

“Really dude? Put your damn iPad away”


Indeed, Northers are the ones still fighting the Civil War