Category Archives: Rants and Raves

Personal Opinions

JSF Circus Act – The Clowns Take the Stage

As a former USAF fighter pilot with a personal vested interest in tactical aviation, there are times when the current system for providing new combat “rides” for aviators seems astonishingly inept, if not irreparably broken. Recent news only serves to highlight my concerns. And let me make it clear at the outset that my use of the word “clown” is in no way intended to demean any particular individual mentioned in this post. This isn’t an attack on individuals, but a comment on the collective process, which I contend is laughable if it weren’t so pathetic. The Lockheed Martin F-35 … Continue reading

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No Wonder We’re Broke – Redux

Does is seem unreasonable to you that the American public should expect our leaders to be responsible stewards of the billions of dollars entrusted to them? Assuming your answer to that question is, “No,” consider with me for a moment the lunacy represented by the following two egregious examples of a fiscally brain-dead system. The Commission on Wartime Contracting was established by Congress in 2008 under the model of the Truman Commission, which investigated US government spending during WWII. According to a recent study released by the Commission, corruption and waste have cost the US government billions of reconstruction dollars … Continue reading

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Wall of Indifference

If you have spent any time on this website reading posts in the Rants and Raves Logbook, you are probably aware of my personal opinions about United States policy and attendant actions in the Middle East. And if you have found any of these posts offensive, you might want to stop here. But if you are willing to take an up-close-and-personal look at something that is eating the heart of America from the inside out, I encourage you to keep reading. And as you do, put yourself in the shoes of one man for long enough to then step back … Continue reading

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Ethernet Cables and Dinosaurs

As mentioned in recent posts, I’ve had problems with two purchases that were supposed to be “toaster-easy” to set up and use: an AppleTV2 and a Keurig B-70 single-cup coffee brewer. Both have cost me hours of headache trying to figure out why they didn’t work as advertised. At the moment, both appear to have abandoned their reluctance to perform, but that’s more than likely a temporary condition. In the meantime, another problem has risen to the occasion to make sure that I can’t put the bottle of aspirin back in the medicine cabinet. On weekends, my wife and I … Continue reading

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The Keurig B-B-Brewer

As a follow-up to the previous post titled “The Inkjet Business Model – A New Twist,” I can report that my two-month-old Keurig B76 Single-Cup Brewer has been behaving itself, and the title of this post refers to the solution I found online at this forum. The brewer attempts to transfer water from the external reservoir to the internal heated holding tank at three different times: when the unit is turned on, the brew button is pushed, and a brew cycle ends. The problem appears to be a design flaw somewhere in the guts of the brewer that allows an … Continue reading

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The Inkjet Business Model – A New Twist

I haven’t done the research myself to verify this, but according to something I read not long ago, printer ink is the most expensive commodity on the planet by weight. Seems reasonable to me. How else can they sell you a printer for so little and make any money? They want you using the ink, obviously. One printer I owned didn’t let me print in black and white (the majority of my use) if the color cartridge ran out. Once you buy the darn thing, they gotcha. Buy more ink cartridges at an outrageous price or stare at a boat … Continue reading

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Airport Security Addendum

If you have visited this site in the past and spent any time in the Rants and Raves Logbook, you probably know that I am an opponent of the current TSA security measures at US airports because they: violate our Constitutional protection against unreasonable search and seizure under the mantle of an all-too-convenient principle known as “administrative search; subject innocent travelers who present zero threat to radiation that has not been proven to be safe; require travelers to submit to demeaning, intrusive groping of private parts, and; ignore the potential for a terrorist attack through un-scanned, un-probed access to airliners … Continue reading

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Middle East Optimism?

First off, let’s make it clear that as a veteran of a useless hot foreign war and an essential cold one, I have strong personal opinions about the manner in which America uses its military power in pursuit of national security objectives. So when I read a headline like “Biden Grows Optimistic About Iraq,” there’s no way I can avoid reading the article, this one by Gerald F. Seib in the Wall Street Journal. The following borrows heavily from that source. Although Biden recently presided over the Senate as it ratified a new strategic arms agreement with Russia, his personal … Continue reading

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The Manana Ostriches in Congress

In a recent post titled “Balancing the Budget – The Sane Approach,” I republished in its entirety an article in The Wall Street Journal titled “The Right Way to Balance the Budget” and offered a personal observation about the difficulty in trying to assimilate enough unbiased information to form an opinion about the best solution for the current fiscal nightmare in America. A few days later I read an opinion piece that serves as a perfect example to illustrate the kind of polar-opposite thinking clouding the issue. The following is based on a NYT editorial titled, “Budget Hypocrisy.” Let’s define … Continue reading

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Balancing the Budget – The Sane Approach

As a follow-up to a previous post titled, “RIP – The Best Available Version of the Truth” and an introduction to the complete text of a recent article in the Wall Street Journal below, I’d like to offer the following personal observation. A few months ago, a friend and I were discussing the topic of truth, which for the purposes of this post I’d like to define as that which is in accordance with fact or reality. My position was that the average person can’t trust much (if anything) of what is fed to the public by the media because … Continue reading

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