The $300 GoTenna turns your smartphone into a CB radio

The $300 GoTenna turns your smartphone into a CB radio, lets you send messages when you have no cell signal. This is promising tech. It would be incredible in an emergency. The huge negative is that it only transmits to other goTenna’s. If it transmitted over frs, or gmrs frequencies it would be that much more appealing. Early adopters can get a pair for 150.00 after that it jumps to 300.00

Check it out here

Wearing military gear as a civilian

Language alert in video

In the above video Joseph Scott is confronted by former military for wearing a uniform as a civilian. Here are my thoughts

So those who know me, know I am a fan of all thing military surplus. Military gear is heavy, iterates fairly often, and can be had at a steal.  I have never served in the military. I tried on three separate occasions, in three separate branches.  I got booted out of meps (military enlistment processing) three different times.  They booted me for something going on in my shoulder the docs could see from a prior injury. I was always honored when I got to go on a gig to Fort Monmouth, or Keesler Air Force Base, or any other gigs of this type.   You will often find me wearing my surplus polartec fleece with my custom tnhoplite name tapes in the winter. What you will never see on my gear is branch, rank, insignia, etc.  You will also always only see me wearing utilities.  Just pants, shirts, jackets, and maybe boots (Got some sweet bates USMC surplus boots) I wear them for their rugged, utilitarian function. You will never see me wear service uniforms, as they have no function for me, and I feel it is disrespectful. There are some legal aspects to this I will put below. Yet as uniforms are deprecated, they are no longer considered uniforms. Nor are they considered uniforms without the branch nametape, and proper insignias from a legal standpoint. According to wikipedia for example, BDU, DCU, and other fatigue types are no longer uniforms for most branches. ACU, ABU, MCCUU,  etc. are examples of current utilities being used. My point in all this is to love my surplus gear, while never disrespecting those who served. Joseph messed up by wearing insignias, impersonating someone who served, and overall being a jerk in the whole thing. If I was donning my my old BDU’s and was asked.  I would make sure they understood clearly I have never served. I would then promptly asked if they had. If the response was yes, I would thank them for their service, and apologize if my duds offended them in some way. I would also show them how there are no branch, rank, or insignias.  As I am in no way trying to impersonate someone who had served. My lone TNHOPLITE name tape is all I ever use. So those who served, Thanks for your service. For anyone wearing old uniforms, be careful what you attach to them, and don’t be a jerk. Many people have fought and died wearing those insignias and they hold a lot of importance for that reason.

Now for the legal

Specifically, 10 USC, Subtitle A, Part II, Chapter 45, Sections 771 and 772.

Section 771 states:

Except as otherwise provided by law, no person except a member of the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps, as the case may be, may wear –

(1) the uniform, or a distinctive part of the uniform, of the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps; or

(2) a uniform any part of which is similar to a distinctive part of the uniform of the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps

Section 772 lists some exceptions:

(a) A member of the Army National Guard or the Air National Guard may wear the uniform prescribed for the Army National Guard or the Air National Guard, as the case may be.

(b) A member of the Naval Militia may wear the uniform prescribed for the Naval Militia.

(c) A retired officer of the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps may bear the title and wear the uniform of his retired grade.

(d) A person who is discharged honorably or under honorable conditions from the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps may wear his uniform while going from the place of discharge to his home, within three months after his discharge.

(e) A person not on active duty who served honorably in time of war in the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps may bear the title, and, when authorized by regulations prescribed by the President, wear the uniform, of the highest grade held by him during that war.

(f) While portraying a member of the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps, an actor in a theatrical or motion-picture production may wear the uniform of that armed force if the portrayal does not tend to discredit that armed force.

(g) An officer or resident of a veterans’ home administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs may wear such uniform as the Secretary of the military department concerned may prescribe.

(h) While attending a course of military instruction conducted by the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps, a civilian may wear the uniform prescribed by that armed force if the wear of such uniform is specifically authorized under regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the military department concerned.

(i) Under such regulations as the Secretary of the Air Force may prescribe, a citizen of a foreign country who graduates from an Air Force school may wear the appropriate aviation badges of the Air Force.

(j) A person in any of the following categories may wear the uniform prescribed for that category:

  • (1) Members of the Boy Scouts of America.
  • (2) Members of any other organization designated by the Secretary of a military departmentSection 772 (f) allows the uniform to be worn in a theatrical production. Is Trick or Treat a “theatrical production?” Nobody knows, because no court has ever defined this. The closest a court has come is the Supreme Court, who used a very liberal interpretation of “theatrical production” in SCHACHT v. UNITED STATES, 398 U.S. 58 (1970). In this case, the court said:Our previous cases would seem to make it clear that 18 U.S.C. 702, making it an offense to wear our military uniforms without authority is, standing alone, a valid statute on its face. See, e. g., United States v. O’Brien,391 U.S. 367 (1968). But the general prohibition of 18 U.S.C. 702 cannot always stand alone in view of 10 U.S.C. 772, which authorizes the wearing of military uniforms under certain conditions and circumstances including the circumstance of an actor portraying a member of the armed services in a “theatrical production.” 10 U.S.C. 772 (f). The Government’s argument in this case seems to imply that somehow what these amateur actors did in Houston should not be treated as a “theatrical production” within the meaning of 772 (f). We are unable to follow such a suggestion. Certainly theatrical productions need not always be performed in buildings or even on a defined area such as a conventional stage. Nor need they be performed by professional actors or be heavily financed or elaborately produced. Since time immemorial, outdoor theatrical performances, often performed by amateurs, have played an important part in the entertainment and the education of the people of the world. Here, the record shows without dispute the preparation and repeated presentation by amateur actors of a short play designed to create in the audience an understanding of and opposition to our participation in the Vietnam war. Supra, at 60 and this page. It may be that the performances were crude and [398 U.S. 58, 62] amateurish and perhaps unappealing, but the same thing can be said about many theatrical performances. We cannot believe that when Congress wrote out a special exception for theatrical productions it intended to protect only a narrow and limited category of professionally produced plays. Of course, we need not decide here all the questions concerning what is and what is not within the scope of 772 (f). We need only find, as we emphatically do, that the street skit in which Schacht participated was a “theatrical production” within the meaning of that section.By the way, in making this decision, the Supreme Court also struck the words, “if the portrayal does not tend to discredit that armed force,” from the statute as unconstitutional. The court said:

    This brings us to petitioner’s complaint that giving force and effect to the last clause of 772 (f) would impose an unconstitutional restraint on his right of free speech. We agree. This clause on its face simply restricts 772 (f)’s authorization to those dramatic portrayals that do not “tend to discredit” the military, but, when this restriction is read together with 18 U.S.C. 702, it becomes clear that Congress has in effect made it a crime for an actor wearing a military uniform to say things during his performance critical of the conduct or [398 U.S. 58, 63] policies of the Armed Forces. An actor, like everyone else in our country, enjoys a constitutional right to freedom of speech, including the right openly to criticize the Government during a dramatic performance. The last clause of 772 (f) denies this constitutional right to an actor who is wearing a military uniform by making it a crime for him to say things that tend to bring the military into discredit and disrepute. In the present case Schacht was free to participate in any skit at the demonstration that praised the Army, but under the final clause of 772 (f) he could be convicted of a federal offense if his portrayal attacked the Army instead of praising it. In light of our earlier finding that the skit in which Schacht participated was a “theatrical production” within the meaning of 772 (f), it follows that his conviction can be sustained only if he can be punished for speaking out against the role of our Army and our country in Vietnam. Clearly punishment for this reason would be an unconstitutional abridgment of freedom of speech. The final clause of 772 (f), which leaves Americans free to praise the war in Vietnam but can send persons like Schacht to prison for opposing it, cannot survive in a country which has the First Amendment. To preserve the constitutionality of 772 (f) that final clause must be stricken from the section.

    So, in the above Supreme Court case, the court defined “theatrical production” very liberally, and struck out as unconstitutional the prohibition that the portrayal not tend to discredit the military.

    Excerpt from
    http://usmilitary.about.com/od/theorderlyroom/a/uniformwear.htm

Once again these guys make me weep all over my computer keyboard. I know so many times I fail my God, Wife, and Family. I fail them to the core. It is only by unrelentless grace that I exist in this day to day life.

556

5/32″ D2 steel
8 3/8″ OAL
3 3/4″ cutting edge with a tanto tip.

Saber grind

175.00

Go get it at Battlehorseknives.com

 

Reflections of today, and on the 2nd question in the new city catechism.

Thinking about the 2nd question in the new city catechism, and on the sermon I heard today. What I have come to realize more and more, is just how awesome Gods grace is, and just how much I have to learn about him. I just want to be the best husband, and father I can be. Yet I also do not want to ever forget where I am. This morning while singing “beautiful scandalous night” ( a song by one of my favorite bands ) I was reminded of another song they wrote in the early 90s called wilderness. Here lately I have been hearing about perspectives in regards to applying it to theological concepts. I have been challenged here a lot. Yet the thing that is ringing out in me today, is the lyrics of this song .

The first verse contains the lines

Everybody drinks the water from the murky pool

Everybody learns religion at the blind man’s school

And the third verse and chorus

Everybody begs the juror be more than merciful
For the crime we celebrate, for bigotry we learn
Everybody drinks the water from the murky pool
Surely as it heals your soul you feel your body burn

Is your faith so right
Are you so blessed
Everybody wanders in the forest
Is your heart so true
Are you that good
Everybody wanders in the woods
Everybody wanders in the forest
Everybody wanders in the wilderness

I know we serve a mighty God, but when it comes to thinking we have it all together. We are all just wondering in the wilderness, we are all cosmic criminals.

Just my thoughts for today.

A great video with a hint of sarcasm, with what is required to defeat calvinism

My search for an inexpensive forest axe

So in my search for a forest axe I have decided to take the low road. We all know of the big names Gransfors Bruks, Hultafors Bruks, Wetterlings etc. But a lot of people do not know that Husqvarna axes have been made by the big names for years. So I recently ordered the Husqvarna Multi-Purpose Forest Axe. I did not like the fit and finish of the axe at all. I knew it would be rough, because I have bought husky axes before. I have ordered another and will be updating this post then. First lets look at the axe overall.

We see the grain is far from the best, and as we look further we will see some knots as well

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Blade edge is ground very roughly, but it is sharp. This is pretty easily fixed, as I would have done some re-profiling anyway.

20140220-114726.jpg

20140220-114739.jpg

You will see in the above image there is a knot right below the bit. I do not like this at all.

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In this photo it looks like there is a crack in the bit left over from forging. I may be picky. But I do not like this either.

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the overall alignment of the grain in the handle is not horrible. Could be better, could be worse.

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First independent FBI spec test on the G2 RIP round (there is no magic bullet)

First video, is his basic analysis of the physics of the round. Second video is against the state of the art Federal HST. As you can guess there was no barrier sawing observed

Battlehorseknives first monthly special

I have to say this is one of the nicest looking knives I have seen in quite a while. It is 9 1/2″ over all length  and a 4 1/2″ cutting edge, 5/32″ O-1 tool steel with green/black resiten handles, scandi grind, bow drill divit in the handle, kydex/leather sheath and lots of awesomeness. Got get in now while you can it is 175 bucks plus shipping. Go here to snag it.

Christianity, Atheism, and Pascal’s Wager by Jim McClarty

Really good video by local pastor Jim McClarty. To summarize: because you do not believe a law exists. It does not mean you will not be due the punishment, when you violate it.

Here are some links to some of the topics he mentions in his video

The Word on the Word Pt 1

The Word on the Word Part 2

Systematic Theology Series