Coping: With America, Off the Mark

We begin this morning’s epistle with a fine (and to the point) read from Idaho Bill, to get things rolling.  It’s  a useful discussion of just what is “sin”?

Aho George,

A scholar friend of mine once told me that her knowledge of the word “sin” was not as the Bible thumpers claim some rigid matter of right and wrong, but that the Aramaic word from which that interpretation came…meant “Off the mark.” You are a pilot…it is basic navigation…a degree doesn’t mean much in 10 feet, but means a hell of a lot in 10 miles. Listening to all the ranting and raving, the divisiveness sweeping this broad landscape…and looking back to the Preamble of the United States Constitution…..I see and hear very little about that basic concept stated therein….”insure domestic tranquility”. Seems to me we are way off the the mark… and beings that office holders are sworn to uphold the Constitution…me thinks that perhaps those throwing fuel on the flames of divisiveness may be guilty of malfeasance of their duties.

As the old song goes…”Perhaps it’s time we got back to the basics again.”

Yes, I think we could have a much better country if we erected some playing-field-leveling “handling fees” to give financial incentives to corporations to build plants closer to where goods are consumed.  Why, we could even donate all of Detroit as a sandbox for them, if they would just bring back jobs from India and sweatshop lands. 

What?  You say we don’t have enough low-end workers?  Isn’t that what immigration “reform” is about?

A lot of attention gets paid to the right-left political debate, but it’s always just an UP/DOWN power struggle dressed up in red and blue to keep people distracted. 

America would be a much different (and better) place is we didn’t import software, computer chips, and refrigerators.  And I can give you sound environmental and national security reasons why this should be the case.  You ever wonder why we crash test cars but not computers?

But alas, when American started “working with its law books and regulations” instead of working with the industrial arts folks and excellence in engineering, that’s when things really started down hill in a hurry.  Here, read  6-seconds of management theory from Wikipedia:

Staff and line are names given to different types of functions in organizations. A “line function” is one that directly advances an organization in its core work. This always includes production and sales, and sometimes also marketing.[1] A “staff function” supports the organization with specialized advisory and support functions. For example, human resources, accounting, public relations and the legal department are generally considered to be staff functions.[2] Both terms originated in the military.

Regulation is not an Industry and neither is government. But that’s what happens when the line closes down and the staff people decide to run the company (country) to just make up something for management to do.  Easy to pull off if you have an NSA and an army, really.  

And in such a scenario, new markets can be created by decree:  Healthcare and the War on Terror do come to mind.

Forgive me (if I can write like Pogo fer a minit) but:  ”Here we is:  We’s throw’d out our “core work” and the staff is now set on raisin’ taxes on everyone but but those with the money.” 

Flat-ass amazingly, those employed to watch one another (and us bewildered folks on Main St.) then have the audacity to question the social stress that results.  And the economic issues to come….   Pogo had it right:  “We have met the enemy and he is us…”

But Pogo offered hope, too in that “Traces of nobility, gentleness and courage persist in all people, do what we will to stamp out the trend..”

I don’t expect to run out of topics to write about, any time soon.

Riding With Angels

Reader/rider Kevin picked up on my recent gripe about mispostrophe disease…which, as you know,  strikes its victims without warning…often in mid-sentence…

Nothing ticks me off more than an apostrophe used in the plural form of a word. 

I’ve wondered the same thing as you about the little mark, and always assumed it was a brand holder’s prerogative to use or not use it. A great example is “Hells Angels” who eschew the apostrophe in their club name.

Found this:

Even uses 81 (the club) as an example.

Writing and riding related:  A fine gift for Christmas (which my son will get) is Sonny Barger’s book Freedom: Credos from the Road that I’ve mentioned before. While I don’t agree with 100% of it, there aren’t any “step outside” issues.  (I ain’t stupid, after all.)  Which gets me to wondering:  I wonder if Eric Holder’s read Barger’s book?

Research point:  Sometimes I  wonder if somewhere in government, say about GS-14, or so, there’s a secret “banned book list” which is circulated to prevent government workers from being reminded of common sense or Founding principles… 

Forget I mentioned it…they’re surely too busy reading books on software development.

Reader Feedback

This one is useful…


Shame on you, for leading folks astray with your play on the definition of “cash” in your note today:  “Crime Alert   I just know some criminal, somewhere, is going to find the CNBC report “Rich families hoarding cash: Citi” useful brain fodder.” 

Of all people, you know when Citi, or any investor, talks about cash holdings, they’re not talking about green bills at home where any thief can get to them, they’re talking about a short term cash holding (instead of bond funds, stocks, etc) in an account, 401k, IRA, or whatever vehicle.  Unless, of course, you’re being much craftier with your “Crime alert” than I am capable of discerning in the writing, LOL.

As well, I’m not surprised many so-called rich folks are holding an average of 39% in cash—I would expect that % to continue to grow so long as the U.S. is fictionally in a recovery–not everyone believes in the change that’s coming.  Even my admin assistant, a gal so “rich” that she’s on SNAP, has a 401K started to get the company match, and she’s moved it 100% in cash right now.   I fear the only criminal that’s going find this one useful brain fodder is one needing funds ASAP to prop up a whole bunch of liabilities—and when one’s cash holdings disappear in a “tax”, a la Cyprus, no one will call that the crime it truly is either. 

Just had to send the note.  Keep up the good fight.

Your Moody correspondent.

Actually, there really ARE a lot of well to do people about who have increased their in-home cash reserves.  This is because of events like the bail-in in Cyprus and other “skinning of the sheep” which go far beyond sheering.  You point is taken, but I  still claim a half point on this un…maybe you need to watch the Dragon Day trailer again?

By the way, I haven’t seen the movie, otherwise I’d know what the microphone is connected to in the radio scene (1:28 in the trailer) because we ALL know a Yaesu FRG-7/Frog-7 is a receiver only…

Wonder how soon “freedom bands” will go on sale?

HandiBastards Workshop:  We’re Finished

I was wondering the other day about the best wood finishes…Most detailed answer came in from Bill:

The first finish is called Deft. As a 9 year Middle School shop teacher, it’s a great finish for professionals and beginner “Tweens” that live in the pressure filled days of a teen/preteen rollercoaster social life….   Deft 110-122 Interior Wood Finish Gloss, Quart

Deft is a lacquer based finish.  It dries to the touch & recoat in 1 hr.  Takes 3 coats for a good finish.  Use 220 grit between coats, wipe clean, and recoat.  After your last coat, ever how many you like,  let dry 24hrs and use 4/0 steel wool for a luster and deep finish.  .

1-b:  Defthane is a harder, varnish type finish for inside/outside projects.  Has a higher wear factor and UV protection:  Deft Defthane Interior Exterior Clear Polyurethane Gloss, Quart

, but a finish that will last against usage, day after day.   I used it on my workbench’s Maple and Walnut tops and bottom of my endgrain floor of its tool tray.

It hardens because of it’s reaction to Oxygen.  So, if you have any left over in the can, unless you move it to a smaller container filled to the brim before you tighten the lid, the remainder will harden in the can.1 Unit of Waterlox Original Sealer/Finish 1 Quart (TB 5284)

[Hav e a nitro pill read for the price on this one, lol – G].

Here’s how I used Defthane on the doors and Waterlox on my “Hybrid” workbench tops and wooden jaws of the twin-screw vises: 

clip_image001Thumbnail Outline for Rolling Workbench with Storage

            I combined a group of wood and steel items to make an 12 ft. long mobile storage base underneath my shop workbench.

             The original 9 ft. long blue painted trolley, with heavy duty locking casters, came from surplus and cost $90. I added a sprayed a coat of red primer.


Another approach comes from reader Michael in Maryland:

Regarding your finish needs. I’ve had good luck with an odd combo. Try using shellac on the wood (I always mix my own fresh from flakes). Dries fast, brings out color (use a dark shellac). Make final coat one of de-waxed shellac, or wipe down good with mineral spirits. Then top of with a single coat of water based polyurethane. A little coloring in the water base will do wonders for bringing out depth of the shellac finish.

Of all the finishes mentioned, I forgot to pimp that old sailing days favorite that I did all the exterior bright work on out boat with… This one would be marvelous on front door of a home, if natural wood.  A couple of caveats.  The first being that because Sikkens Cetol Marine and Sikkens Cetol Gloss Marine both contain the word “marine” they are pricey:  $36 a quart and $42 a quart…I think they make an “architectural” version for landlubbers and those who dropped the hook inland….

The good news on Cetol is that when I put it on the teak on our boat, I took care to actually read the instructions (for a change) and 5-coats of the stuff had lasted six-years when we sold the boat and that included all kinds of sailing in sun and salt and so forth.  So for the brutal Texas sun, that will be what goes on our “lazy George” cypress laminated beam hammock holder when that project comes up for doing…

Reader SH opined that Watco Danish Oil Finish – 65741 Qt Natural Danish Oil iw really good:

Apply with a rag. It comes in colors. It is very combustible so read the instructions for proper rag disposal. I have used it on cabinets and it gives a warm satin sheen to the wood. It’s very forgiving.

Good point…something most people don’t know is that linseed oil, particularly the unboiled kind, is prone to spontaneous combustion…so when you’re done wiping on the Finnish (or was that Danish?) put the rags in a metal g-can, or better, hang the applicators outside in the wind on a metal clotheslines on a windy day over a concrete driveway with three engine companies, a ladder truck and a charged 2 1/2  (inch fire hose) at the ready.  Oh?  Overkill?  Just my nat’chul conservative streak.

Ramming Back

This morning I’ll be taking the pick-em-up into town for the local transmission emporium to do its magic.  Transmission shops are always something of a gamble, for reasons that are never quite clear to me, except that they are reasonably complex pieces of machinery.

Nevertheless, the local outfit has been around for 42-years, and since my truck has a transmission they’ve seen a lot of, seems like it’s probably something to do with a pressure plate switch which, complete with flush, band adjust, and so forth, will come in about $350-bucks, which is a Hawaii vacation (for two) cheaper than dealer pricing, so it’s worth a try.

Oil Additive Comments

As I’ve mentioned, in the airplane (and the car, and the truck) we run something called AvBlend with LinKite 12 oz Bottle which is approved for aircraft use.

But as I was cruising around, I noticed another product called CamGuard Oil Additive (Aircraft) which is in a similar price class.  Wondering if anyone has experience with it they can share other than the usual stuff floating around on the web?

Also, Plane Speaking

As long as I’m polling readers for input, I posted a note over at the BAC (Beech Aero Club) last night wondering if anyone had experience with putting speed tape on the lower surface (below the chord line) of a leading edge as described in this Deturbulator Project presentation by Jim Hendrix…

OK, so much for a somewhat self-indulgent Thursday.  WuJo reports have “gone light” which means…well, we don’t know what, do we?  So more tomorrow morning…write when you break even…