Friday, January 31, 2014


A gift, from a member of Team STORMBRINGER . . . S.L.

It came from the U.K. all wrapped up in brown paper and tape.

It is Hiberniea Delineatio - an Atlas of Ireland - by Sir William Petty, 1685. This is a limited edition 1968 reprint, one of only five hundred copies.

This is the top of the Table of Contents. Each of Ireland's four provinces - the ancient kingdoms of Ulster, Leinster, Munster and Connaught - have a large map, then each county of each province has a large, highly detailed map on it's own page.

Galway, visited this place on vacation in '86, six months prior to going "down the street" into the Q Course. A lovely place. Tooled all the way up to Ulster; County Down, Belfast, the Antrim coast, Giants Causeway, then back down to Galway. Lovely memories . . .

Connaught, where my people are from. As close as I can determine, they are from Mayo, or perhaps a place just north of Galway. I really should research this.

There is only one proper way to absorb and digest all this information, of course.

Special Thanks to Special Agent SUPERFREAK for a Very Special Gift!



This came across the email machine, anonymous. It'd be an honor to meet this young man, whoever he is; he's articulate, has a flare for colorful language and descriptive prose . . . S.L.

Scorpions, Chiggers & Sand Fleas . . . from a Recon Marine in Afghanistan:

From the Sand Pit: It's freezing here. I'm sitting on hard cold dirt between rocks and shrubs at the base of the Hindu Kush Mountains, along the Dar'yoi Pomir River, watching a hole that leads to a tunnel that leads to a cave.

Stake out, my friend, and no pizza delivery for thousands of miles.

I also glance at the area around my ass every ten to fifteen seconds to avoid another scorpion sting. I've actually given up battling the chiggers and sand fleas, but the scorpions give a jolt like a cattle prod. Hurts like a bastard. The antidote tastes like transmission fluid, but God bless the Marine Corps for the five vials of it in my pack.

The one truth the Taliban cannot escape is that, believe it or not, they are human beings, which means they have to eat food and drink water. That requires couriers and that's where an old bounty hunter like me comes in handy.

I track the couriers, locate the tunnel entrances and storage facilities, type the info into the handheld, and shoot the coordinates up to the satellite link that tells the air commanders where to drop the hardware.

We bash some heads for a while, and then I track and record the new movement.

It's all about intelligence. We haven't even brought in the snipers yet.

These scurrying rats have no idea what they're in for. We are but days away from cutting off supply lines and allowing the
eradication to begin.

But you know me; I'm a romantic. I've said it before and I'll say it

This country blows, man. It's not even a country. There are no roads, there's no infrastructure, there's no government. This is an inhospitable, rock pit shit hole ruled by eleventh century warring tribes. There are no jobs here like we know jobs.

Afghanistan offers two ways for a man to support his family, join the opium trade or join the army. That's it. Those are your options.

Oh, I forgot, you can also live in a refugee camp and eat plum-sweetened, crushed beetle paste and squirt mud like a goose with
stomach flu, if that's your idea of a party.

But the smell alone of those 'tent cities of the walking dead' is enough to hurl you into the poppy fields to cheerfully scrape bulbs for eighteen hours a day.

I've been living with these Tajiks and Uzbeks, and Turkmen and even a couple of Pushtuns, for over a month-and-a-half now, and this much I can say for sure:

These guys, all of 'em, are Huns . . . actual, living Huns . . . they LIVE to fight. It's what they do. It's ALL they do.

They have no respect for anything, not for their families, nor for each other, nor for themselves. They claw at one another as a way of life.

They play polo with dead calves and force their five-year-old sons into human cockfights to defend the family honor.

Huns, roaming packs of savage, heartless beasts who feed on each other's barbarism. Cavemen with AK-47's.

Then again, maybe I'm just cranky young bastard.

I'm freezing my ass off on this stupid hill because my lap warmer is running out of juice, and I can't recharge it until the sun comes up in a few hours.

Oh yeah! You like to write letters, right?

Do me a favor, Bizarre. Write a letter to CNN and tell Wolf and Anderson and that awful, sneering, pompous Aaron Brown to stop calling the Taliban 'smart.'

They are not smart. I suggest CNN invest in a dictionary because the word they are looking for is 'cunning.'

The Taliban are cunning, like jackals and hyenas and wolverines.

They are sneaky and ruthless, and when confronted, cowardly. They are hateful, malevolent parasites who create nothing and destroy
everything else.

Smart. Bullshit. Yeah, they're real smart.

They've spent their entire lives reading only one book (and not a very good one, as books go) and consider hygiene and indoor plumbing to be products of the Devil.

They're still figuring out how to work a Bic lighter.

Talking to a Taliban warrior about improving his quality of life is like trying to teach an ape how to hold a pen; eventually he just gets frustrated and sticks you in the eye with it. OK, enough.

Snuffy will be up soon, so I have to get back to my hole. Covering my tracks in the snow takes a lot of practice, but I'm good at it.

Please, I tell you and my fellow Americans to turn off the TV sets and move on with your lives.

The story line you are getting from CNN and other news agencies is utter bullshit and designed not to deliver truth but rather to keep you glued to the screen so you will watch the commercials.

We've got this one under control The worst thing you guys can do right now is sit around analyzing what we're doing over here, because you have no idea what we're doing, and really, you don't want to know.

We are your military, and we are only doing what you sent us here to do.

From a Saucy Jack Recon Marine in Afghanistan.

Semper Fi.

"Freedom is not free, but the U.S. Marine Corps will pay most of your share".


7 Crucial Questions to Ask Before Starting a Remodeling Or Home Addition Project

The last thing that a law-abiding homeowner needs is to be taken advantage of by anybody, let alone on such a large investment.

Especially in the current economic climate that we're experiencing, every dollar and every decision matters.

1. Are you licensed?

This may seem obvious, but you wouldn't believe the number of smart, well-to-do homeowners that actually forget to ask this one very important question.

EVERY contractor engaged in "home improvement" (defined below) is required to be licensed.

Home improvement work includes alteration, remodeling, repair or replacement of a building or part of a building used as a residence. Home improvement also includes work done on individual condominium units. Home improvement does not include work done on commonly owned areas of condominiums or buildings that contain four or more single family units.

So let's suppose you ask a potential contractor that you're interviewing whether they're licensed or not, and they tell you "Yes". Should you stop there?

Well you could, but it's not advisable. How hard is it to tell a one-word lie? True, it is harder for some than for others, but the perpetrator may consider it to be a "white" lie. Perhaps they're in the process of applying for the license, or they've already applied, and just haven't been accepted yet, or they have a friend who will "cover it" with his license... I've heard a lot of little white lies around this question.

How to check to see if a contractor is licensed

To inquire about the licensing status of any individual or company, a homeowner may call their states Home Improvement Commission.

Exceptions (i.e. individuals or companies that DON'T need a state license) include architects, electricians, plumbers or heating, ventilation, air-conditioning (HVAC) contractors, but they are still required to have their own appropriate licenses.

Definitely ask any potential contractor if he is licensed and also to see a copy of his license. Be sure to check the expiration date and that it is in good standing. If the contractor has trouble producing the license, it's probably because they don't have it. Feel free to give them a chance to produce the physical licensing, but hiring a contractor that cannot show you their license is generally a bad idea.

Why it's important to use a licensed contractor?

Intuitively, you know it's important to use a licensed contractor, but is there really a difference? Well, yes, actually there is.

First of all, states make individuals and companies pass certain criteria and jump through certain hoops, if you will, to receive state licensing. This in and of itself, is a good indication that the company or individual is serious. It indicates that they are not a fly-by-night operation that engages in chronic fraudulent behavior.

Additionally, states investigate complaints by homeowners, awards monetary damages against licensed contractors, and prosecutes violators of the home improvement law and regulations.

Most states have established a Guaranty Fund. This Fund compensates homeowners for actual monetary losses due to poor workmanship or failure to perform a home improvement contract.

But here's the kicker, the Fund applies only to work done by licensed contractors. Each licensed contractor is covered by the Fund for up to $100,000 for all claims. Unlicensed contractors are not covered by the Fund.

2. Do you have general liability insurance?

Equally as important as having state licensing, every contractor should have general liability insurance. This insurance is in place almost primarily for the reason of protecting you, a contractor's customer.

In the event that something happens where your property is damaged, having proper general liability insurance will cover the costs of the damages, so that you don't have to pay for it!

Again, this is something that should be discussed on the first meeting. The contractor might not have a copy of the policy with him, but you should insist on seeing it before hiring him.

Just these two questions, if asked every time by every homeowner, probably would've saved the majority of them from the hardships they experienced.

3. Do you guarantee your work?

Again, a very important question that is (surprisingly) mostly overlooked.

It makes sense (again, definitely on an intuitive level) that contractors should guarantee their work! Considering that a remodeling or additions project is a long-term type of thing, the guarantee should be for at least one year. In fact, it's actually a licensing requirement in the state of Maryland that contractors guarantee their work for a year.

Some contractors (mostly the good ones) will have extended warranties.

You should open up a dialogue and talk in-depth with your potential contractor about their stance on the guarantee. In general, when a remodeling contractor is very confident with their guarantees, it will shine through in the way the act when you're talking about it.

You can tell when somebody is unsure, anxious, or nervous.

If you sense any hesitation or any doubt when you are discussing the guarantee with your contractor, that can be a strong indication that they're not confident in their work. An unconfident contractor is like an unconfident surgeon-not good news.

4. Can you provide some references?

This seems like another obvious one, but literally, about half of homeowners don't even ask. And of the ones that do, most will settle for written references.

We all know why it's important to get references, but the actual process of getting the references can be more or less effective, depending on how you do it.

For instance, do you settle for written references? What if they were fabricated?

Do you ask to speak with individuals over the phone? What if they were somehow fabricated?

I hope this doesn't sound like there is a general idea that builders and contractors are liars. We are designers and builders ourselves and we would never in any way imply that our colleagues are less-than-honest.

But at the same time, this is a lot of money that you are investing in this project, and if a little due diligence can dramatically increase the chances of making a better decision, you owe it to yourself to spend the time in this area.

Typically, if you ask for references, a contractor will probably furnish some written ones. It is very highly suggested to ask for names and phone numbers of 3 recent customers and also 3 customers that have had their work done at least 3 years ago. This way, you will get ideas from customers that have just finished their projects and you will also get a sense of the satisfaction of customers that have had their projects completed for some time.

And (this part is important) be sure to call them! As you're talking to them, ask them as many questions as you can think of (while being respectful of their time, of course). Record their answers to the questions, and also the general feeling that you get the customer had with the contractor.

Be sure to make sure that the previous customer's situation was somewhat similar to your own. For instance, was it the same project size with a similar scope of work? Was the property roughly the same age as your property? Did they live in the same neighborhood as you? Results can vary pretty widely and be somewhat misleading if you don't have much in common with the previous customers.

5. Who will be in charge of the job?

Throughout the construction process, there are going to be a lot of questions, comments, concerns, and a general need for solid communication between all parties involved.

There will likely be many different workers actually doing the physical labor. You don't want to have to go to one of them to ask your questions. It is ideal, therefore, to have a project manager who will be your primary point of contact.

Ask your contractor whether there will be a dedicated project manager, or a dedicated point of- contact, who is well-familiarized with the job. By "well-familiarized" I mean that they know you, they know your neighborhood, they know your house, they know your budget, they know your goals, and they know your expectations.

It's a simple question, "Who will be in charge of the job?"

On the same note, you should get some details. What will the lines of communication be? Is that individual going to be here physically? Will I have to call them on the phone to get information? Will they be responsive to email?

Another important question regarding the actual leadership of the engagement is, "Are there going to be any pre-planned meetings?" For instance, many clients have pre-construction meetings to properly set expectations of what the construction process will entail, and what types of disruptions are to be expected.

Additionally, there is often-times a meeting about mid-way through to discuss the progress of the job, any surprises that have come up, and any adjustments to the timeline of completion.

Is your contractor planning on having such meetings?

6. What about things like dumpsters, hauling trash, port-a-potties, and general clean-up?

This topic, another important one, is rarely ever discussed in interviews that I've witnessed. It is one of those things that is a very fine detail to have to think about when preparing to embark on a large job, such as a home addition.

But the fact is that it is very important in terms of your overall experience. Do you want a big pile growing like bacteria on your property? Do you want to have to remove the trash yourself at the end of the job?

Of course you don't. And you shouldn't have to.

Bring this up frankly and discuss it with your builder before the job starts. Then throughout the course of the project, check to make sure the builder is on track with what you agreed on.

Since no two jobs are exactly alike, it's difficult for us to tell you specifically what to tell your contractor. But just the fact that you read this and that these details are now at the front of your mind, should help you avoid most potential problems.

The last thing you need is a big pile of trash to take care of before going inside and enjoying your new living space.

7. Do you offer any financing options?

Having been in this business for as long as we have, we have naturally developed several banking relationships with the ideal types of lenders. You should expect the same from your potential contractor.

Talk to them about it before-hand.

Many banks want to lend you money. What we have found over the past twenty years is some are a lot better than others at doing it. We have relationships with several banks that have had offered our clients great options and service.

This should be one of the easy parts of doing a renovation, we will guide you through the process.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


Here we go again, right on cue . . . Democrats want to raise the minimum wage . . . to what end? . . . S.L.

I grew up in Bangkok. Over there it is customary to haggle for the taxi fare before you get in the cab. By law they have meters, but they prefer to do it the Thai way . . . especially when a farang flags them down.

The Game

You're on Sukhumvit Road, Soi 15. You flag the taxi down, and before you get in you tell the taxi driver you want to go to Sathorn Tai Road. The taxi driver does a quick mental calculation for the fare, then doubles it because he's dealing with a farang.

Taxi Driver: "Two hundred Baht."

This is ridiculous, of course, but you and he both know he doubled the fare, maybe even tripled it. The normal protocol at this point is to offer half, and you both meet in the middle. But today we're playing The Game, so instead you DOUBLE the price!

Farang: "Two hundred Baht? That's not the price! FOUR HUNDRED BAHT!"

The taxi driver can't believe his good luck, of course. He's got a genuine crazy farang on his hands - probably been standing out in the noon day sun too long.

Taxi Driver: "Four hundred Baht! Very good! Let's go!'

Farang: "Four hundred Baht no way! EIGHT HUNDRED BAHT!"

The taxi driver isn't sure he's hearing this right.

Taxi Driver: "Eight . . . HUNDRED . . . Baht? You . . . want . . . go . . . Sathorn Tai . . . EIGHT HUNDRED BAHT?"

Farang: "Eight hundred Baht? That's not right! ONE THOUSAND SIX HUNDRED BAHT!!!"

The taxi driver is convinced you're out of your mind, and probably on some dangerous drugs. Still, its a fare. Life is hard in the concrete jungle and he's got a cluster of Buddhas to protect him from evil spirits and nutjobs like you . . .


Chuckling, you get in and then pray to God, Thor, Odin and Buddha that you make it there in one piece because the Thai Taxi Driver is going MEDIEVAL! When you get to where you're going, you tip him an extra fifty Baht on top of the hundred, because both of you knew that was the price all along.

Thai Taxi Driver Game Meets the Minimum Wage

So where are we going with this?

Milton Friedman, the Nobel Prize-winning economist, said, "No single law has caused more poverty or hurt more people than the minimum wage law because what it does is it officially prices unskilled labor out of the workforce."

The minimum wage is for basically unskilled, inexperienced labor. Now, the job market needs people like that because the starting point, that's where they get experience. The Noobs learn to show up, learn the requirements of responsibility and achievement and that's how they follow through and advance in life.

But when the government places an artificial value on that labor they are basically playing the Thai Taxi Driver Game with the market - but unlike the Thai Taxi Driver, neither player understands what's going on. The business owners hiring people know what those jobs are worth, and if that kind of work is not worth ten bucks an hour or whatever the government is calling for, nobody's gonna be hired.

The next time you find yourself in a conversation with a Liberal about the minimum wage, try a version of the Thai Taxi Driver Game.

Liberal: "I think the Republicans are evil, cruel and mean-hearted. I think that we should raise the minimum wage to ten dollars an hour."

Team STORMBRINGER: "I agree, only ten dollars an hour really isn't enough. We need to raise it to, say, fifteen dollars an hour."

Liberal: "Yeah! That's do-able!"

Team STORMBRINGER: "You know, thinking about it, fifteen an hour is only $120 a day, and that's only $840 a week. After taxes and - ahem - healthcare, it's really not enough. The minimum wage should be THIRTY DOLLARS AN HOUR."

Liberal: "Well, um, yeah . . ."

Team STORMBRINGER: "Hell, thinking about it, why shouldn't it be SIXTY DOLLARS AN HOUR? Those greedy business owners can afford it! Take it out of the CEO's pay.

Liberal: "Well, um, no, that's too much . . ."

Team STORMBRINGER: "Oh? Too much? Well, explain to me why we shouldn't pay people that much?"

And when that happens, you've got 'em.

See ya at the submarine races . . .


Monday, January 27, 2014

Home Interior Design - How to Start

Getting into home interior design is not necessarily for the faint of heart, as it can get very complicated and expensive. There is much more to home interior design and just slapping paint on the wall or doing some basic repairs. While virtually anyone can do those sort of tasks, designing an interior from scratch is quite another matter.

However, there is something quite wonderful about having everything in your own hands and having complete control over how you design your house. Obviously, all these sort of things start with a plan. To begin with, this plan might just be a rough sketch on a piece of paper and then it evolves from there.

The plan is the most important thing in fact because it gives you an overall impression of what the end result is going to look like. Before you start spending money and time, you need to have a good impression of what you are in for. There are a number of ways to achieve this.

If you have any knowledge of computer aided design, then you can truly work wonders with today's modern and super fast computers. Though these order programs do tend to have a rather steep learning curve, computers these days are ultimately capable of creating photo realistic designs which you can fly through to see everything how it would look in real life.

However, if you are not into computers and you just don't have that knowledge, then you can also do quite a lot just with a pen and paper. Creating some two dimensional plans as to whether furniture will go is a start. You will also need to be good at meditating however, as you are going to need to visualise without a picture how your room is going to look.

Of course, you can browse the Internet to find lots of pictures and see if you can find something that inspires you and while you might be able to compare it to the room that you want to redesign, it is not going to be particularly accurate.

Once you have a good idea of what you want to achieve, you can start getting to work. There are various guides available which can teach you the basics of home interior design but you are going to be required to be practical and a general knowledge of basic maintenance is almost essential.

Many of the aspects of home interior designer quite easy to teach yourself. Pretty much anyone can do the basic jobs of painting in preparing services but he gets a bit more complicated if you want to do any plasterwork or install tiles. Nonetheless, there is no reason why you can't learn and you can also save a lot of money if you do learn. Hiring a professional interior designer is extremely expensive and it could be argued, that they wouldn't do the job exactly how you wanted it anyway.

Also, if you just want a simple redesign, you can experiment a little and the job will also be far simpler. There is nothing complicated about repainting the room and getting somebody had that a new carpet in for example or even doing it yourself.


Someone sent this photo via the email machine . . . Heads Up Marines: your Sergeant Major has arrived, and Chesty is turning over in his grave right now! I don't know Marine Corps awards & decorations but I do know this kid is no JROTC: wWhen was the last time you saw a Rotty with Vietnam service ribbons, E-9 rank and a Purple Heart?

I posting this hoping we can get some ID on this fart gobbler and shame him appropriately.

Somebody? Anybody? BUELLER?



No well known, but the BAR gunner for the squad that climbed Mount Suribachi on Iwo Jima didn't make the climb. When the squad was ordered up to take the summit, he had already broken down his BAR for cleaning and couldn't get it put back together in time.


Sunday, January 26, 2014


The three-masted barque 'Otago', built in 1869 and owned by Grierson & Company of Adelaide. This was the only vessel commanded by Józef Korzeniowski, who later became famous as the writer Joseph Conrad. Korzeniowski took command of the 'Otago' in Bangkok in January 1888. He sailed her back to Sydney and then made a return trip to Mauritius before relinquishing his post in March 1889.

Josef Conrad is considered one of the greatest writers of English prose, which is remarkable considering English was his thrid language. Conrad has influenced my writing greatly. Our paths crossed, apparently, in Sydney and Bangkok, albeit separated by eighty-odd years. Conrad wrote the novel Heart of Darkness, inspiration for Coppola's masterpiece Apocalypse Now.


Friday, January 24, 2014


. . . if you know where this is . . . S.L.

HINT: Any SWCsters out there you should know this place like the backs of your hands . . .


Thursday, January 23, 2014

Financing A Home: Improving Your Credit Score

Nowadays there are numerous homes for sale together with lower rates and also low interest rates. Property will be cheaper today as compared to it is often in lots of decades. Taking into consideration the economy, exactly why just isn't every person getting upset upwards properties? The fact remains, several first-time residence customers are usually bouncing in to the industry and also getting back in with this cost-effective property possibility. Real-estate buyers may also be extremely lively while they notice this original possibility to develop their particular success. The particular unlucky fact for all today will be in which although properties tend to be cost-effective today as compared to in lots of decades, loan providers have become particular concerning which receives that loan and also would you not necessarily. Along with your credit history is probably the major signals regarding if you'll get accepted to get a bank loan and also just what the interest will probably be.

Just a couple of years back any debtor using a credit history only 500 can obtain a residence. Nowadays in which report has to be at the least 620 to be able to 640. Also to meet the criteria to find the best interest levels an individual far better use a credit history inside the 700's. It doesn't matter what the credit history will be, you have to know that. When it is not necessarily near 750 you ought to take care of to have right now there and also below are a few effortless suggestions to assist in improving the credit history.

Why don't we have a look at just what information on our own credit file establishes the report, next we all gives ideas on what to boost inside everyone of people locations

35% or perhaps the credit history will be caused by the transaction historical past which usually not merely contains genuine repayments in your collectors, nonetheless it contains items for instance choices, judgement making and also duty liens. Being mindful of this an individual constantly need to be sure an individual help make your car or truck, bank card and also bank loan repayments punctually. Several loan providers furthermore demand proof regarding local rental transaction historical past, thus you should ensure you pay out the hire punctually at the same time. In addition, any transaction is known as punctually when it is paid out inside of 1 month with the due date. When you have choices, judgement making or perhaps duty liens on your own credit rating, you will need to offer resistant why these have been paid out. When you can find past due choices it is possible to most of the time discuss money at under what exactly is payable. From your credit rating credit scoring viewpoint that is practically as effective as spending completely provided that it really is noted since pleased completely around the credit file.

Furthermore, you possibly can make any transaction set up regarding duty liens and also right after 12 weeks acquire people graded to your credit file which will help. Judgement making must become paid out completely on the shut of your bank loan, and also you need to obtain it paid out as well as the credit file up to date so that you can increase the credit history. Most of the time using a historical past lately repayments we need to point out, moment repairs almost all pains. Put simply, it could you need to any 12 months of earning your repayments punctually to obtain the credit history you will need. When you have things on your own credit file which can be completely wrong, then you can certainly argument people items to buy them adjusted with all the credit rating institution.

30% of one's credit history will be caused by simply how much you borrowed from on your own bank card being a proportion regarding overall credit limit. I want to offer you an illustration: When you have a single bank card using a $1, 000 reduce and you also are obligated to repay $750 with this credit card, the proportion regarding credit rating use will be 75% along with your accessible credit rating will be 25%. The reduced the particular use proportion the bigger the credit history will probably be (all the aspects getting the same). You can find 3 approaches to increase this kind of amount. It is possible to attempt simply by spending the bank card straight down at the earliest opportunity. It is possible to obtain a growth inside the bank card reduce. And you may furthermore start fresh charge cards. The past a couple of, you need to workout several extreme care nonetheless.

Once you obtain a growth within your bank card, you ought to question the bank card business should they are capable of doing this kind of good worth of one's transaction historical past using them. Or even they are going to develop a credit rating request that may reduce your report somewhat tad. I think it could possibly nevertheless be well worth the particular credit rating request discount from the credit rating to have the credit limit improved. I really believe in which typically you'll use a web acquire inside credit history, yet there were occasions when We have noticed that fall no less than for a while. In addition, usually do not raise the equilibrium on your own bank card as soon as your reduce increases or perhaps you should have merely unfastened the particular development, yet today you borrowed from additional money whilst still being use a lower credit history. In the same way, once you start a fresh bank card, you wind up possessing several hits in opposition to an individual which can be the particular credit rating request as well as the fresh credit rating consideration. A lot more concerning both these in the instant.

15% of one's credit history will be caused by the amount of credit score. Thus Why don't we have got one more illustration: Suppose you might have a couple of bank cards. You might have acquired one of many bank cards regarding 5 decades as well as the some other credit card regarding 36 months. Etc common the bank cards are usually some yrs . old, therefore the credit history can mirror this kind of some yr common size. Today in the event you available a fresh credit card, an individual lessen your common as a result of concerning a couple of. 7 decades coming from some decades. Thus in the beginning no less than this may hold the result regarding lowering your common amount of credit rating and also lessen your credit history consequently. In which is probably the causes in which beginning fresh credit rating just isn't an instant resolve regarding bumping the credit history upwards. Nonetheless enables have a look at that per year coming from today. In a yr coming from beginning the newest bank card the common size could be with 3. 6 thus when that is section of a lengthier expression method next it could probably be an excellent strategy to stick to.

10% of one's credit history will be caused by fresh credit rating, thus yet again you can view in which beginning a fresh credit rating consideration not merely decreases the common amount of credit rating, just about all is important in opposition to an individual over a stand alone schedule at the same time. That is furthermore exactly why a great request has an effect on the credit history at the same time. Any time you can find questions, it really is "assumed" from the method that you will be getting fresh credit rating whether or not you might be or perhaps not necessarily. As an example, in the event you acquired your car or truck on the car lot being repaired although you're holding out you're looking at a fresh automobile and also finished up creating a great offer you that your car lot is aware you will end up capital, they are going to be sure to work the credit rating (along with your agreement needless to say). Thus even when you find yourself not necessarily buying the fresh automobile, the particular credit rating request will be on your own credit file and definately will a bit reduce your credit history. In addition, almost all questions noted in the thirty day period of time coming from related organizations will probably be taken care of together credit rating request. Thus when you are likely to become investing in a automobile or perhaps searching for home financing, make an effort to acquire every one of the questions devote inside of 1 month to minimize the consequence regarding numerous questions.

The past 10% of one's credit history will be caused by the particular forms of credit rating employed, or perhaps that which you contact credit rating combine. It really is excellent to own equally bank cards, car and truck loans, mortgage loans and also sequel lending options on your own credit file. For many people it may need time and energy to attain most of these, yet be mindful in which an individual which constantly makes use of large interest, risky loan providers could have reduced fico scores at the same time. My partner and i can not talk about these simply by identify needless to say, yet oahu is the loan providers who certainly be a fund business, and also tends to make large interest and also quick unsecured loans regarding family items that may reduce your credit history. Today it isn't negative with an consideration together with this sort of business. Many assist retailers to supply simply no attention, simply no repayments regarding ninety days or perhaps more time. So long as you usually are not using them together with uniformity. When proven an individual can be eligible for affordable fee bank cards and even a great sequel bank loan with a lender or perhaps credit rating partnership using a competing fee at the same time. Thus remember when you develop the credit rating and also credit history why these aspects almost all give rise to your current report.

Several some other feelings to suit your needs. Many of us question myself just what this kind of or perhaps that may carry out in your credit history and also sadly there is no-one to inform you exactly as credit rating credit scoring will be relatively just like Kentucky Melted Hen chickens key menu regarding 11 herbal remedies and also seasoning. This is a strongly safeguarded, very superior pair of algorithms in which includes every one of the previously mentioned explained aspects and also minimizes these as a result of a straightforward 3 digit amount which is likely to symbolize the odds of trying to repay the particular bank loan or perhaps bank card you might be obtaining. You might connect to any loan company who is able to benefit driving an individual from the means of bettering the credit history. Additionally, there are numerous organizations that will, to get a value, work with the credit history to suit your needs. You can find simply no assures with your companies and likewise, they normally are relatively pricey and also many are only simple grab offs, and that means you would have to method this kind of opportunity together with significant amounts of extreme care.

Ultimately, being a buyer regarding credit rating companies and perchance since an individual who would like thus obtain a residence, you ought to ensure it is a priority to be able to take control of finances along with your credit history and discover just what the credit history will be and also perform tough to bring that upwards or perhaps sustain that.


LUNAR SPOOK sends us an interesting approach for interpreting crimes statistics . . . S.L.

* Caveat Emptor: Liberals may become passive-aggressive when confronted with facts which are inconsistent with their emotions.


Wednesday, January 22, 2014


As a philosopher, I contemplate the deepest questions and dilemmas that have challenged Mankind though the ages - S.L.

Does this bikini make my ass look fat?

Does this wetsuit make my ass look fat?

Does this thong make my ass look fat?

Does the Grand Canyon make my ass look fat?

Does this lingerie make my ass look fat?

Does this beer can make my ass look fat?

Does this HOT AIR BALLOON make my ass look fat?

From this point on, whenever The Dreaded Question comes up, you'll know how to answer . . .

Throw a grenade and empty the magazine . . .



Just spent a three hours - and the better part of yesterday afternoon - battling the latest effects of Global Warmening . . . we got 12" of the white stuff and it is colder than THREE welldiggers' *ssholes: 1°F in New London Township PA, feels like -10°F with the windchill . . . THANK YOU THOR & ODIN ! ! ! - S.L.

Monday, January 20, 2014

LONE SURVIVOR - Quest for Truth Continues...

Something I've never done before but the nature of Thursday's post was controversial even by MY standards . . . comments were numerous and bring up issues worthy of reply . . . S.L.

First and foremost let me state that I am not questioning anyone's valor, and let us honor the memory of the SEALs and the Special Operations Aviation Regiment soldiers who gave their lives in Operation Red Wings. They fell in battle against a determined foe, under extreme circumstances. They are Heroes, worthy of respect and honor.

My point concerns a possible series of errors beginning in the planning stage - perhaps even further back during training - and continuing during critical portions of the operation itself, that led to the failed mission's disastrous loss of life.

Without questioning the SEALs marksmanship capabilities or their tactical abilities as individuals, aspects of this operation do bring up a few critical points: Why go in with so small a team? Why not a larger support element one terrain feature away, with one or more crew-served weapons, which could also provide retrans capability for the recon teams AN/PRC 148 radios?

The AN/PRC 148 Embitter is a handy enough little number: 30-512 MHz Contiguous Frequency Coverage, AM/FM/ Voice/Data with Retrans capability, RF Output 100 mwatts to 5 watts, weighs less than 2 lbs and is even immersible in water to 2 meters (20 meters maritime version). Optional SINCGARS frequency hopping capability means it's extremely difficult to detect, impossible to triangulate. But field conditions vary, and anybody who's worked in mountainous terrain knows that radio signal can be difficult or impossible.

The start point of ground combat is expressed in the time-honored axiom: "Shoot, Move and Communicate." If you lose one of the three legs of this tripod, you're combat ineffective and it's time to di di mao. You wouldn't stick around in a combat zone without guns or ammunition, why stick around on a recon mission if your radios don't work?

The moment the SEALs became aware they had no radio communications to the rear they should have moved to a pre-planned extraction site and awaited emergency exfil - and of course their plan should have included to have the extraction bird fly the exfil site within X hours of no comm's. This is the Basic Planning 101.

As I stated in my preamble the other day, I initially wasn't going to say anything about this at all. Hindsight is 20/20 and I didn't want to come across as a Monday Morning Quarterback, but a certain MARSOF Sergeant Major for whom I have a great deal of respect asked me to - twice - and I wasn't going to make him ask a third time. Again, this point of view regarding the SEALs role in Operation Red Wings is common within the community:

A Marine Corps View Of Tactics In Operation Red Wings

In all fairness, I had similar sentiments about the CAG's disastrous engagement in Mogadishu in 1993. The issue with Operation Gothic Serpent involved mission creep, and underestimating of the enemy who - having observed a pattern to US operations - were able to lure US forces into a helicopter ambush. The rest is history.

Again, let me state this is at best a historical analysis and at worst Monday Morning Quarterbacking by a guy who was not there. I have not read the book - although if somebody gives me a free copy I will - and I am not going to pay to see the movie. On top of that, readers pointed out a few errors in my post and I will address them here:

Photo caption is wrong. The two guys with Marcus and Matt Axelson are Patton and Suh, who were both KIA as part of the QRF

My bad - I will fix as soon as I complete this post. I don't want bad info going forward into the future.

Second paragraph is also wrong. Marcus was the Corpsman, not the "leader". The element was led by LT Michael Murphy.

Also my bad - I actually knew this and I forgot - this is what I get for not reading the book. I guess I'm obliged to read it now.


Individual SEALs - well trained and superb fighters. The bureaucrats -regardless of training - that send them into harms way, probably not so much, more concerned with 'career enhancement' than mission accomplishment.

The way it worked in the Special Operations organizations I was a part of, we were not put into harms way by bureaucrats but rather by commanders who had walked in our boots and were present with us in theater and often on the ground.

. . . if Marcus Luttrell had considered killing the four goat herders to protect being discovered by his adversary(ies), that suggests the situation was dire, indeed, and perhaps justifying early extraction. it seems only fair to make that judgment . . .

My point is A) why was there no plan for such a compromise? And if there was a plan and it included killing non-combatants then B) what would this have accomplished? You can't kill all the goats - they would run away, back to their home in the village, and when the goatherds did not return, the men of the village would inevitable come looking, and in that country they bring their rifles with them everywhere they go.

This is not the first time this situation had occurred. In the First Gulf War, an SF A team was on an OP mission on a highway in Iraq and was compromised by a boy; They also let him go and not much later an local Iraqi Inf patrol attacked the team forcing them to do a immediate ex fill ( no one died.)

I know the team that was compromised in Iraq - that was ODA 555 the Sharkmen and I know the team sergeant who got them out of there. The lessons to be learned there include how to read marginal data on satellite imagery (so you understand what vegetation to expect at what time of year) and DO NOT destroy all your radio comm's and crypto immediately upon compromise - 555 was lucky enough to possess an AN/PRC-112 capable of communicating line-of-sight with Tac Air and they were lucky enough that a stray F-16 picked up their signal. Again, it's about communications. It's ALWAYS about communications.

Bottom Line:

The MARSOF Sergeant Major asked me - right out of the blue in the middle of a business call - "Is there any doubt in anyone's mind that this (Lone Survivor mission) is anything but yet another example of SEAL incompetence, with the usual lethal consequences?" I've heard this sentiment repeated within the community going back twenty-plus years. There is a strong Infantry heritage within Army and Marine Special Operations units. This heritage simply does not exist within the SEALs, and it shows in their training, planning and execution of operations.