Category Archives: Current News

Veteran’s Day

It’s that time – the day we commemorate Veteran’s Day. A somber day, not exactly a “Happy Holiday!” with a cheery smile sort of occasion.  This year, appropriately enough, the observance day is also the birthday of the U.S. Marine Corps (U.S.M.C.). Happy birthday, Marines!The US military has been going through a rough patch in the last few decades, with more enemies domestic and internal (especially the most recent former C-in-C, whose policies were extremely destructive to the professionalism and moral of the uniformed forces, from what I’ve heard) than external… those the external threats, from ISIS to RocketMan are not inconsiderable.

I’m a veteran of sorts – served an uneventful (in terms of actual hot-war deployment) enlistment in the US Army Reserve. It’s enough that on some job applications I can check the “veteran” status box, but on others that list specific types of veterans (Vietnam War Era veteran, Service Medal Veteran, etc.) I cannot, because I don’t qualify as any of those specific types. Just a generic “signed up, served, went home, carry on” sort of thing.

I honor those who served, whether draftees like my dad, or volunteers like myself, friends who or family who served in war and came home like Joe Huffman’s son-in-law, or those who served and didn’t, like Adam Plumondore.

So bow your head briefly, raise a glass, or whatever, and thank those who served to protect your right to politely disagree with your fellow American, and helped to create the greatest country this planet has ever seen, flawed, decadent, and in decline though it may be.

Cheers!

Happy 4th!

The Declaration of Independence, the Original Brexit!

Celebrated with explosions and guns and food and family and all things the crew of Tajemnica would approve of.

Wasn’t always easy.

Wasn’t always fun. Been more than a few rough patches and growing pains. And now, apparently, having a moment of sanity among the encroaching senility and decadence of old age and too much easy living. But still the greatest nation on earth. That may change in a few years – all things change, all empires fall and fade – but we’re on the right path for a few more years.

Heinlein’s future history spoke of the Crazy Years. We’re in them. My future history so far published has been deliberately vague, but I think it’s safe to say that I’m predicting more tough years ahead, but all in not lost. Venice arose out of the fall of Rome. America rose from the faltering British Empire. But Haiti arose from a faltering French empire, so nothing is guaranteed.

For today, celebrate what has gone before and gone right, while praying for things to improve, and work toward making it so.

Memorial Day

Today is Memorial Day. It’s a day set aside to remember those who served and died wearing an American military uniform. It is a Federal holiday commemorated on the last Monday in May. I’m a vet, and I know a lot of vets. I don’t know a lot who died in service, but I have met a few who later met their fate while still much too young.

To all those who served honorably, and paid the ultimate cost, I salute you.
May you soul rest in a better place.

The idea of “what is worth fighting for, dieing for?” is a theme much looked into in literature and fiction, and different people are looking for different answers. I hope that I may have given some people insight through my humble writing. If not, there are greater pens than mine in the world, and I ask you to keep looking, and never give up hope.

Shadow-Banned

Well, sort of.  Welcome to the edgy dark side of the web, where you know you are doing something right when they start taking shots at you.

It looks like some SJWs at Twatter and FB noticed Michael Neal’s new The Stars Came Back pages and activity. Likes and follows were ramping up steadily. Suddenly the new likes and follows almost completely dried up for a while, before starting to trickle back in. Suddenly “Facebook the stars came back” doesn’t return any Facebook pages on Google search. Suddenly a whole slew of people Michael started following as a test didn’t reply or return a follow. Did a great majority of a thousand people suddenly not see a new follower? Curious. But the pages are still there. The tweets still exist.

If a conservative tweets in a throttle did it really happen? Continue reading Shadow-Banned

Real Marines study “Starship Trooper”

Well, of course they do. No; I mean, they really do.

To be more specific, they have decided it’s a good idea to read Mil-S/F in general to look for ideas on tech, trends, and doctrine, to see what they might possibly need to prepare for, look for, procure, and teach. It makes sense. You read history to find out where we’ve been, what’s been tried, what’s worked, what’s failed, etc. Reading Mil-S/F to find scenarios that some other smart people have already thought about, maybe even thought through somewhat rigorously to see how it might play out, how it might be used or countered. Obviously some things like FTL or space-aliens might not fit directly into anything going on now – but some hard-science things with sensors, ways of thinking, computers, etc., might be quite relevant.

That’s part of the reason I like Mil-S/F: it makes me think about history, what is, and how people act and react when the SHTF.

H/T to Instapundit.

Movie deal in progress…

Currently starting to work out the details on a movie deal. Not the whole thing, at least not at first. Currently exploring the idea of pitching a scene with two or three different budget funding levels depending on how much can be raised for it, with various “extras” depending on interest, etc. If only a shoe-string budget gets raised, we aim for more “proof of concept” and a short version of the scene. With more money we get more length, better location, better costumes, better actors, and especially the special effects improve. With enough money, perhaps enough of a Tajemnica set and F/X modeling can be built to allow for shooting a number of additional scenes at minimal extra cost.

Still early in the negotiations, but the fact that it’s being seriously considered by someone in the industry is exciting. Once something like a formal agreement has been made, pitch and production budgets outlined, and proper right option signed, I can post more, along with links to product demo reels from the people involved, where to go for fund-raising donations, etc.

Election day

One of the themes in TSCB is that elections only work with informed, intelligent voters. If they are ignorant, either by choice of by gaslighting, delusion, illusion, sloth, or any other reason, then bad people can gain power. Democracy isn’t a panacea. At the end of TSCB, Taj, Helton, and the crew were sending out an information blast that couldn’t be ignored, a massive and targeted information dump to enlightened the abused.

I’ve been following this election for a while – being unemployed has given me a little extra time to watching things – and I’m of the opinion that such an information blast would be unlikely to work. It’s too much, too fast, too big. It presents too much of a change in world-view. People pull back from a hand extended to help them if the hand being put forth is too big, gnarled, and dangerous-looking.  Short of divine interventions, people don’t react well to paradigm shifts; they don’t do so well even with divine intervention. They need to be brought around slowly, shown things a bit at a time, things they can buy into, things they can believe, from people they find credible, to slowly build a foundation.

Two weeks ago, Alex Jones of Info Wars was some conspiracy nut-job. Now? I’m not so sure. In fact, I’m sure he’s right about some things. Yet I talk to people and they simply assume that because the FBI didn’t get the DoJ to press charges, there must literally be nothing but a witch-hunt there in any of it, and Hillary is a dream candidate. They look at each little billow of smoke, for years and years and year, and see no possibility at all of any fire because they see no convictions. If you try to cut straight to Satanism and child trafficking, they laugh at you. If you even try to point out Ortel’s take-down of the Clinton Foundation, they just dismiss it saying “if it’s so bad, why are there no charges filed?” They can’t even entertain the possibility of the DoJ, the FBI, and a few high-ranking politicians being in the scheme together. It’s not possible, they say, “checks and balances” they cry, when it’s more “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine.” You can’t reason them anywhere.

They will not believe until there is not just blood in the streets, the blood will need to be on THEIR street. It’s amazing how closed minded “open-minded” people can be. And while that presents a lot of opportunities for plot-lines, it also makes for some real dilemmas in real life.

The day the wheels came off

History is a lot of routine events following simple trend-lines, interrupted from time to time by wild panics with much screaming and shouting. At the end of TSCB, a relatively stable human-space was suddenly destabilized and thrown into an uproar by Tajemnica and her crew.  What had been well-understood space was suddenly inhabited by a drastic alteration of power that seemingly nobody really understood but everyone feared. They wanted to protect their own position and perks. Suddenly, a great many plans were thrown into disarray.  (The sequel, BTW, “Insanity’s Children,” picks up exactly where TSCB left off, and they run into some of the exact same problems that we have today with nobody believing the Dem Machine is this bad). Continue reading The day the wheels came off

A step toward Armadillo

Flight-sim AI beating good AF pilots. One step (not sure if it’s big or small) with interesting possibilities. A human “captain” in a fighter, with a “personal squadron” of AI fighters flying as his wingmen could be a game-changer. Or at the very least, very difficult to beat. Human for the operational/strategic decisions on the spot, and two or three (or a half-dozen?) unmanned AI “drones” with guns, lasers, missiles, and bombs, to carry out the details and defense.

Skynet, anyone?

H/T to Kirk