Aug 312017

Russia claims new Mach 4+ MiG-41 Interceptor will be able to operate in space

No actual details.

An aircraft capable of Mach 4+? Sure, I suppose. Seems an odd thing to develop these days. Those sort of speed were an aviation fetish in the 50’s and 60’s, but there really isn’t a whole lot of need to go that fast and the penalties for doing so are *harsh.*

Operating in space? Meh. Might be a translation error or a simple misunderstanding. An aircraft capable of going that fast could potentially pop above the sensible atmosphere, perhaps like the X-15. So it would be in space, but nowhere near orbit (which would require Mach 25, not merely Mach 4). if it did so, it would need to have some ability to control its attitude, presumably with attitude control thrusters.

Or it could be BS. That would be entirely unsurprising.

 Posted by at 12:35 am
Aug 312017

Remember how Trump caused a ruckus by saying that there were troublemakers on “both sides?” And how a whole lot of people started screeching that one side was the Nazis, and the other side was the “anti-hate” peaceful protesters?

Yeah, about that:

Everywhere a Battlefield

The link is a perfect example of TL:DR, but it basically boils down to “Lenin, Stalin and Mao were Teh Awesome, an we need to follow in their footsteps and bring bloodshed to the streets.” The “Red Guards Austin is an autonomous Marxist-Leninist-Maoist collective based in Austin, TX.”

So keep in mind: yes, on one side you have people who think the Nazis were great. The Nazis, who killed something like 20 million people. On the other side, you have people who think the Commies were great. The Commies, who murdered a hundred million people and who pointed nuclear weapons at *us.*



 Posted by at 12:13 am
Aug 302017

Don’t tell me you don’t want one:

(Oddly this vid doesn’t want to embed in the post)


I can think of two ways to improve upon this full-scale Messerschmit Me 163 Komet glider:

  1. Install a real rocket engine. While the performance could be tailored to equate that of the original, it’s always going to be dangerous and rather limited, and your choice of airports will be *very* limited.
  2. Install a small turbojet. The inlet will of course be a dead giveaway, but if you design it right it should be relatively unobtrusive. You could then fly it about like a regular aircraft, and given the relatively vast fuselage, you should have a whole lot of room for fuel. Or Cheetos…

You know, for kids. Like this:




 Posted by at 2:32 pm
Aug 292017

America tests ‘the most dangerous nuclear bomb ever produced’: F-15 drops $1trillion super-nuke that has an adjustable yield and is more accurate than ever

The B61-12 is called “dangerous” because it’s yield is *ridiculously* low, variable between 300 *tons* and fifty kilotons. How it’s a “super nuke” I can’t say.

Entertainingly, in an effort to define this bomb as “dangerous,” the author of the piece refers to both International ANSWER (a communist front group) and Russia Today (Putins mouthpiece in the west). these organizatiosn don;t want the US to have this or any other new nukes. Which means it’s probably a good idea to keep developing, testing and fielding new nukes.

 Posted by at 9:06 pm
Aug 292017

As hurricane Harvey whallops Texas and flood Houston to a truly remarkable degree, comparisons to hurricane Katrina are inevitable. There have been some deaths due to Harvey, but nothing – at least so far – comparable to the more than a thousand dead in Katrina. Plus, the Cajun Navy is there in force rescuing people… but I notice a lack of reporting about all the folks being rescued by the Antifa Navy. Maybe their efforts are being held in reserve…

Another difference: in Katrina, hundreds of thousands of pets were simply abandoned. Many died, many were re-homed. At the time I was puzzled… I can understand the panic that comes with having to pack up and split in a hurry, but leaving pets behind? OK, pets like fish and lizards I get, but abandoning cats and dogs? Nope. Just… nope. These creatures are, as I’ve said before, On Our Team. You don’t leave team members behind. A lot of it, I suppose, was due to rescue services not letting people take their pets, a situation that has fortunately changed: as I type this, a bit on CNN shows a fire department boat going door to door in a suburb (there’s a phrase you don’t read too often) collecting families… and their pets. A police officer was shown helping a family find their freaked-out cat, another family loaded their dog onto the boat. Good on all y’all.

The coverage certainly seems to suggest that Texans are doing a  better job of taking their pets with them when they leave.

Harvey and Pet Owners


List of animal shelters and rescues in the path of Hurricane Harvey

Plus: it’s interesting to see humans coming to the aid of *non* pet animals. A popular story ove the last few days has been that of a Coopers Hawk that took shelter from the coming storm in a taxi:

What’s spiffy is that the taxi driver took the hawk in and provided aid and comfort to this wild animal. See the updates on the guys YouTube channel. The hawk turned out to be injured in some way that prevented flight; after a few days it was transferred to the care of a wildlife center.




Where I live the chances of a flood are pretty slim. More likely are things like fire and earthquake and ashfall from supervolcanos. But I would *like* to think that if the time came to bail I’d take the time and effort to gather up the cats. Fortunately I’ve not had to put that to the test, but I’m reasonably sure that any disaster that gives me more than a few minutes warning is going to see me stuffing cats into crates.

 Posted by at 7:03 pm
Aug 282017

Health professionals report cases where people put sunscreen on their eyeballs to watch eclipse

In stupidity-related news…

KTVU anchor: ‘I experienced hate firsthand’ at Berkeley rally


Masked anarchists violently rout right-wing demonstrators in Berkeley


“I experienced hate firsthand today. It came from these people dressed in all black at a protest in Berkeley. Ironically they were all chanting about no hate.”


In Berkeley on Sunday, some observers derived satisfaction from watching far-left protesters beat up and chase off a young man at the rally in apparent support of Trump.

“It’s a good time,” said Tom Martell, 70, of Crockett, who stood in Civic Center Park with his girlfriend, Lisa Argento, 53.

“They’ve got to be chased out,” Argento said. “I moved to the Bay Area and pay good money to live here. I don’t want these people here. They need to leave us the f— alone.”

Now imagine if a right-winger had said supported the use of violence to keep out “those people,” because he pays good money to live there and doesn’t want their kind nearby. Go on, imagine it.

 Posted by at 9:42 pm