Friday, April 11, 2014

The logistics of 'Captain America'

So, once again the Grouch family was invited to view the latest Disney release at the Disney studios in beautiful downtown Burbank.  Somehow through good fortune or error (or both) my name ended up on list of folks who get invited to view new Disney movies at their studio theater.  I never asked why because if I did they may realize that they meant to invite someone else with a similar name but got me instead.  Be that as it may, the Missus, Young Son, Young Daughter, and yours truly got to see the latest release at the Disney studios theater.  It is always very exciting for us star-struck types to go to the studio lot and see the history on display all around us as  we walk from the parking structure to the theater.  The Disney folks are so very nice and not officious at all.  We just enjoy the heck out of it.
This time we got to see "Captain America- The Winter Soldier".  I thought by the title the Cap was fighting the bad guys in the Arctic, but no, he was fighting a foe who was called 'The Winter Soldier'.  Why he had that moniker was never explained as far as I could discern.
It was a great movie, loads of earnest fun, full of explosions and fights to the death.  And it had Scarlet Johansson as the co-star, need there be more said? I enjoyed it a lot and the Missus applauded vigorously at the end so that means it was a great movie.

The anxious movie attendees waiting for the show to start


So what's this about the logistics of Captain America?  I don't think I will be betraying too much of the movie to mention that right in the middle of D.C SHIELD has  the equivalent of a shipyard which is constructing the equivalent of three WW2 Jeep carriers underground.  Did I mention this is smack in the middle of D.C.?   So can you imagine the amount of raw materials that would flow into an underground ship yard?  the plate steel, the aluminum, the copper?  How about the finished sub assemblies, the light bulbs, the toilet paper, the time cards, the Hostess Twinkies for the employee snack shop, all flowing via truck or rail (or as the Missus postulated, by sling load under heavy lift helos) and all right through the middle of D.C.?   Let's add in the thousands of workers coming and going all day and night.  How about the electrical service, water, gas and sewer lines for the underground shipyard?  I don't think that the facility was secret per-se but I don't think there was a sign on the beltway pointing to it on the off-ramp to it either.  Didn't anyone wonder what the heck was going on there?
I did learn one thing from the movie:  now I know why traffic is so messed up around D.C; its because of Captain America and SHIELD's shipyard!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Three car ads to start your morning

I stole these ads from a Yahoo article this morning about the 10 greatest TV car ads.  I've picked out three of the best (in my opinion).  You can read the whole article here:

Saturday, April 5, 2014

The Left's intolarance

So, those on the Left frequently scold the rest of us for being 'intolerant' in thought and deed.  Of course, their idea of tolerance is actually conforming to their mores and values.  Opposite view points are not welcomed, not tolerated, only scorned and are censured when possible.

Case in point:  Recently the CEO of Mozilla was forced out when it was revealed that he had the gall to contribute to a political cause that the Left finds to be repugnant to their worldview.  Mr. Eich emphasized that his private political views did not enter into the operation of the company that we worked for but in this Topsy-turvey world of intolerance that masquerades as tolerance, the Left gathered their forces and sent him packing.

I was listening to NPR yesterday where this issue was being discussed.  The majority of the callers stated that he got exactly what he deserved because his views were 'not in mainstream'; were 'out of step with society'; showed that he is 'intolerant' and much more.  The discussion host challenged the callers by serving up a scenario where a CEO holds personal views that mirror those of the callers but due to the conservative nature of the state that the example company is located in, the CEO is forced to resign.  Would that be fair, wondered the radio host?  All but one of the leftist callers said, without any sense of awareness of their double standard,  that it would be completely unfair and 'intolerant' to dismiss a company CEO whose views matched theirs.  Only one young woman admitted to the host that she was being hypocritical in her stance but then emphasized that her stance was the only allowable one. 

To a person they demanded censorship and retaliation against anyone in a position of authority who held views contrary to theirs. 

It is a few short steps from this stance to thought control for the masses. 

1984 anyone?

Who does it better, the Duke or the Big Labowski?

'True Grit' the movie and the book are one of my all-time favorites.  I saw the original at the theater with my Dad and loved it.  I loved the scenery and the story.  I already had major respect for Duke Wayne but this movie upped it another 100%  Anybody who could make fun of his image like he did but still be deadly serious and a sure shot when the time came was a real man.
So like everything in Hollywood, it got remade recently.  Young Son and I went to see it and we liked it but still, for me, the original is the best.  Most current critics disagree.
Spend five minutes and watch the same scene done by different Rooster Cogburns and you tell me who does it better!
Big John Wayne as Rooster Cogburn and a very young Robert Duvall and lucky Ned Pepper
Jeff Bridges as Rooster Cogburn

What you should never say to your car

So the other day I told my faithful Dodge Stratus that it is a good 'ole car.  I bought it used and in a couple years put about 10k miles on it.  Really haven't had to do anything to it except four new tires.  I'm pretty happy with it and I told it so.

Big mistake.

Soon after telling it this, I decided to check the engine oil.  The dipstick handle broke off in the tube and the stick wedged in the tube to the point that it just wasn't going to come out. 

Just like most Americans, it cannot just accept a compliment and move on.  Nope, it had to show that it really wasn't worthy of the nice words I gave it.

I bought a new dipstick and tube and changed it out this morning.  The set up took longer than doing the job itself.  The Dodge parts counter guy told me that they sell a lot of Stratus dipsticks but they never get stuck in the tube when they break.  Lucky me!

Remember, if you are pleased with your car, never tell it.  It'll break something just to show you up.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

You just couldn't make this up - California Democrat firearms hypocracy

California state senator Leland Yee recently went after California gun owners with the apparent goal of turning the ownership of semi automatic long arms into a felony. He attempted to do this by  passing laws that declared common features on these as illegal.  Surprisingly Governor Brown saw how absurdly the law was crafted and vetoed it. Yee stated that he was going to keep submitting the law to the Governor until it was signed.

This week Yee was busted by the FBI for various nefarious crimes including...wait for it...trafficking in guns with international criminal gangs!   So, did he try to pass his crushing anti firearms law to limit the competition in gun sales?

The state Democrats who are now up to three legislative members on suspension for criminal activities are just shocked.  As if they had no idea.  And if the leadership didn't, then what kind of operation are they running?

Maybe, just maybe, the people of California will wise up and vote out enough democrats to put some balance into the completely democrat dominated state government.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

The Second Amendment - a Thoughtful View

The Huffington Post, frequently a hotbed of in your face leftism, has taken a different direction with the linked article below regarding the second amendment.  Note that I didn't accuse the HP of in your face 'liberalism'.  Liberalism is not in itself a bad thing and in decades past being a 'liberal' meant that a person was a broad thinker open to progress and the embracing of new ideas.  leftism however is a cover for compulsory socialism and on its far fringes collectivism and anarchy.

Anyway, the HP posted a thoughtful article about the second amendment and its importance for moderating the behavior of our government on all levels.  As is written in the article  "...And then there are those who view the government as neither good nor evil, but merely a powerful entity that, as Thomas Jefferson recognized, must be bound "down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution." To this group, the right to bear arms is no different from any other right enshrined in the Constitution, to be safeguarded, exercised prudently and maintained."

Read the entire article here:

The right to keep and bear arms may seem to some to be something that belongs in the past but let me say that a right forfeited will never, never be secured again.  This right is simply too valuable and too significant a symbol of the special place that the individual holds in this nation to relinquish.

Read the article and then think of those who fight mightily to remove the right to keep and bear arms from the citizenry.  If this right is forfeit then what will be next?

An armed man is never a slave.