Thursday, July 31, 2014

Finding the Best Loan For Your Home Improvement Project

The last few years have been tough on the real estate market and this has led to an increase in home improvement projects in some areas. If your family is growing, you may not be able to just flip into a bigger home and if you are looking at selling your home, their may be things you can do to maximize the value of the house. This is especially true for those areas that have been hardest hit such as southern California and Florida. Whether you are just looking to try and maximize your properties value or need to increase the livability of your house, home improvements can often accomplish your goal. To fund these projects many homeowners are turning to home improvement loans.

Since the current rates on mortgages are still very low, using your home equity to fund most improvements can often be a wise decision. There also may be some tax advantages to using your mortgage instead of another source of credit. For this reason you will want to speak with you tax attorney or accountant before making a final decision.

Are Home Improvement Loans Right for Me

Properly planned home improvements can often have positive impacts on your homes value. If you pick your projects wisely the increase in home value can often be greater than its cost to complete. When deciding on a home addition or remodel you should ask yourself a few questions:

- Will this project greatly improve your comfort level as you live in the home?
- If remodeling, is it a high traffic area such as a kitchen to maximize usage?
- Will this be something prospective buyers in your area desire in a home?

After you have decided on what the home improvement will be you will need to find the best funding option available. While you should always start with your local banker or mortgage broker that should be just a start. Finding the best rates on a loan will take a little legwork on your part but it could save your thousands of dollars over the life of the loan. Thanks to the internet, that legwork has gotten much easier. There are many quality mortgage resources online that can instantly match you with local lenders. By taking the time to compare rates, terms and closing costs from a few different lenders finding the best home improvement loan is easier than ever.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

SOMEWHERE BETWEEN PHOENIX - DENVER - CHARLOTTE - PHILLY

It was a long flight back . . . and this really happened . . . S.L.

Coming back from the ISB Reunion . . . flights kept getting bumped . . . got on the plane God Knows Where and this kind of dumpy Baby Huey looking guy with nerd glasses plonks himself down in between me and the window seat . . .



Its something I gotta deal with. I think about all the continents I've traversed by wheeled motor transport, and airplanes are ten million times better. I'm a Stoic so I deal with it, right?

Then this BEAUTIFUL YOUNG LADY in a white summer sun dress floats up the aisle . . .



"Excuse me," Miss Body Lovely says to Fatso. "I'm 11B."

Fatso looks at his ticket, goes, "Oh. I'm 10B."

Then, before I had a chance to grab Nerd Nutz by the ass and do a Samsonite gorilla number on his fat ass . . .



. . . Nerd Nutz says to Young Miss Cool Summer Breeze: "YOU CAN SIT IN MY SEAT UP THERE IN THAT ROW . . .

It happened too fast for me to make my move . . .

I sat there for a moment in stunned silence . . . I finally snapped out of it, I had to say something . . . I couldn't let this outrage occur without calling it out for what it was . . . a Crime Against Humanity . . .

I looked Nerd Nutz in the eye and pointed at the numbers over the seats. "ELEVEN. VERY CLOSE TO TEN, BUT NOT THE SAME."

Nerd Nutz looked at me with a confused look, which looked somehow natural on his face.

I gestured toward Miss Beautiful, then I gestured toward the Walking Salami. "ONE," I said, "VERY CLOSE TO ZERO, BUT NOT THE SAME. ONE HUNDRED PER CENT DIFFERENT."

He's looking at me like I've got a cock growing out of the middle of my forehead. He's not used to an American Non-Comm giving him The Business.

Meanwhile, over in the window seat, Banana Bender from South America is LAUGHING HIS ASS OFF.

I continue.

"IT'S THAT MATH THING."

I laid it on thick. Nerd Nutz was feeling the shame. He knew he'd done wrong. Finally I asked, "WHAT DO YOU DO FOR A LIVING???"

Wait for it . . . Nerd Nutz shamefully utters:

"I'm an accountant . . ."

Me and Banana Bender are POSITIVELY DYING ! ! !

I says, "WHO DO YOU WORK FOR ? ? ?"

Nerd Nuts starts to mumble something and I cut him off. "DON'T TELL ME BECAUSE I'LL MAKE A PHONE CALL ! ! !"

The journey continues. We get to the other side. Before the pilot switches off the fasten seatbelt sign, I make sure to rinse and repeat all of the above in reverse. Banana Bender was totally on my side.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it . . .

STORMBRINGER SENDS






Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Home Remodeling Coaches - Three Ways DIY Remodelers Save Big Money Using a Home Remodeling Coach

Are you thinking of remodeling your home? Do you plan to manage the project yourself? DIY (do-it-yourself) remodelers can save money doing things themselves but there is a catch. What if you miss something? What you don't know could hurt you.
 
"But, I'm a DIYer, I can't afford to hire someone to help me manage this!"
 
Too often in life we focus on the cost of services over their benefits. We bemoan the cost of an accountant when we should value the tax savings and time freedom we are gaining. The question really should be: What is this expense going to save me in the long run? For most people, the truth is, they can't afford not to hire a coach.
 
What Is a Home Remodeling Coach?
 
Before I get into the benefits that a coach provides, I should explain what one is. Other articles go into more detail and I encourage you to seek them out. Briefly, a coach guides you in every process from planning through completion.
 
The home remodeling coach is the same as a home building coach. They are trained and experienced industry professionals who work along side you while you remain in charge. You pay a coach (or Custom Home Coach) a flat fee based upon the length and scope of your project.
 
Three Ways Custom Home Coaches Save You Money
 
I should advise that hiring a coach is not needed for a simple home improvement like painting, replacing a carpet, or adding shelves. We're talking about a major improvement here, like doing a kitchen remodel or adding a room and bathroom. Here are just three of the many ways a Custom Home Coach can help you in your major remodeling project.
 
#1 Planning, costs, and strategies: Getting a project off the ground is tedious and confusing. A coach will provide tremendous help through the preparation process showing you what to do and when, how much things will cost, and how to implement your ideas. The coach will steer you away from disaster before you veer into it.
 
#2 Keeping the project moving forward: No one likes to live in a house that's constantly under construction or renovation. The experience of a coach will help you keep workers showing up and solve issues as they arise. Delays cost money and ruin the experience.
 
#3 Avoiding a major mistake: This one speaks for itself. You don't want to make an expensive mistake! This is the one big reason most professional builders say that people should not manage their own projects alone. I agree. Your remodel coach could save you thousands of dollars by helping you avoid one crucial mistake.
 
Each of these three benefits of hiring a Custom Home Coach could stand on their own. Getting all three is just a bonus. So don't miss the forest for the trees. Don't focus on the small expenditure of hiring a coach when in the long run, you'll end up dollars and sanity ahead.

Monday, July 28, 2014

THAI'd ONE ON . . .

Reconnecting with my Soul Tribe at the International School Bangkok All-Class Reunion in San Jose - 24-29 July 2014


As I've described many times before, I grew up in Southeast Asia in the sixties and the seventies. It was an incredible childhood and youth, one I wouldn't trade for all the tea in China, but when the time came for me to leave and to come "home" to a land I barely knew . . . well, you can't possibly imagine the sensations of loss, of loneliness, of exile. The closest I can describe it is the feelings returned veterans have of a shared adventure, the most intense time of their lives, that nobody around them knows or can possibly understand.

Tony Grady in the jump seat, that's me in the driver's seat. Tony was Class President and Senior Patrol Leader in our Boy Scout Troop. A natural leader with tons of charisma, he went on to fly the B-2 Stealth Bomber.

Again and again I have heard my friends from that time of my life remark upon the same themes: coming "home" and missing an exotic land in Asia, a magical kingdom that for us really was our home. When I came "home" I was a lost soul. I didn't have a plan, I didn't know how to connect the dots . . . I couldn't even understand how people looked at me and saw me as the same as them, but inside I was so, so different . . . it literally took decades just to get my head around it . . .

Artifacts and souvenirs from The Good Old Days

Nowadays we "ISBeings" reconnect through our biannual Reunions, alternating between the west and the east coast. For us, this is more than a high school reunion - this is the only way we can go "home". Bangkok is still there, of course, but our friends and families are no longer there. I went back to Bangkok in 1988 and it broke my heart. I was standing in the middle of Sukhumvit Road - one of the busiest thoroughfares in one of most vibrant and bustling cities in Asia - and I might as well have been in a ghost town.


If you can't be in Thailand, you must bring Thailand to YOU! Thai dancers at the Saturday night banquet.

Ancient Sukhothai style of Thai dance.

Isan style of Thai dance done to modern electronic synthesized version traditional Thai dance music.

The home of our youth is more a moment in time than a physical place. Sure, Thailand is still there, but our home is the Thailand of our youth. At the ISB Reunions a strange phenomenon takes place. At some point over the four days, a strange kind of vivid deja-vu occurs, all of the alumni describe it:

A glimpse out of the side of the eye as an old friend approaches out of the sunlight, and she looks like she's sixteen years old . . .

. . . an out-of-body experience on the dance floor and suddenly its Saturday night, dancing the night away at the Teen Club . . .

Words aren't enough to describe . . . but pictures are worth thousands of words . . .


More little bits and pieces of Thailand . . . because when you're an ISBeing, wherever you go, there's always a little piece of Thailand there . . .


ISB logo with the iconic Hanuman, the brave and virtuous Monkey God of Hindu mythology, loved and revered in Thailand.

The Mighty, Mighty Mekhong

The ISB Alumni Association Spirit House embodies the Camaraderie we share as ISBeings, the Good Works we pursue in the ISB Alumni Association, and as remembrance of our lost Family of Classmates and Instructors.

Our Tribal Gatherings allow us to reach back across the Mists of Time and briefly touch our Shangri-La beneath the Summer Moon . . .

ISB is FOREVER

STORMBRINGER SENDS

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Find Comfort In Self Build Log Cabins

Log cabins are the common choice of people living in places where the climate can really be unpredictable. This is especially true for those people living specifically in United Kingdom. More and more people have been opting to invest in log cabins rather than buying a readily built modern house. Aside from the low cost, log cabins can also provide you with a different comfort. A log cabin is built from unprocessed logs. This gives the owner of this type of house a different feeling of being close to nature.

Some people would think that investing on a log cabin can be very costly. Actually it is not. There are a lot of log cabin kits that are sold at a reasonable price. Self build log cabins are one good option to help you cut down with your expenses. Some people might hesitate to purchase these kits thinking that they will have to build the house themselves, which is definitely a false belief about self building. The idea behind self building is basically allowing the owner of the house to oversee the entire project. He needs to be involved from the planning to the selection of materials up to the construction of the house until it is successfully constructed. But of course, the owner can still opt to do as much work as he can especially if he is working with a constricted budget.

Log cabins are not only cost efficient. It is also guaranteed to provide you with all the comfort that you really deserve and need. Living in a house built from logs is a very practical choice for people living in places were climate changes are very hard to predict. Logs have natural insulating properties that keep the temperature of your house more favorable during the cold season. The logs capability to keep your house warm may even help you save on your energy consumption because you will be spared from using heaters to keep you warm. Apart from the logs capacity to stabilize the cold temperature, it can also be very ideal during summer season where the scorching heat of the sun becomes so unfavorable. As much as logs can keep you warm during cold seasons, it can also keep your house cool during summer because logs are poor conductors of heat. Thus, it delays movement of the heat from the sun towards the inside of your house. Log cabins are really capable of providing you with a different feeling of comfort that only a house made from logs can give.

If you have decided to invest on log cabins, you need to make sure that you will only be using the top quality of materials to make sure that the house you will be building is really durable. Before purchasing a kit, make sure that the supplier is really reputable and has built a good name in the industry. Definitely you will only want to use seasoned logs for your house right? So to make sure that you will be getting the highest quality of materials, make sure that you only transact with reputable suppliers.

Friday, July 25, 2014

TIME OUT

The International School Bangkok All-Class Reunion 2014 is taking place this weekend in San Jose, California and I am here . . . S.L. Class of '77


I've written about my upbringing in Southeast Asia and have referred to my school. Simply stated, it was/is the best damn high school in the world - the experiences we had as ex-pat kids in Asia were unparalleled, and the teachers were legendary. When we crossed the stage and received our diplomas it was the equivalent of a bachelor's degree from any academic institute in the world.


After checking in late last night I was making my way across the pool area and I hear "IS THAT SEAN LINNANE???" . . . many Singha's and a couple of glasses of straight vodka later I finally made it to my room about 0300 hours. . .


I'll update with some anecdotes as the weekend progresses.

STORMBRINGER SENDS

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

STOLEN VALOR: Ron Dickey, Democrat for U.S. Congress, Mississippi's 1st District

STOLEN VALOR: Ron Dickey fraudulently claims service in US Army Special Forces . . . S.L.


A colleague talked to him on the phone for 27 minutes. Ron Dickey admitted he was a cook in 3rd Special Forces Group but the fact that the Army issued him a GB and that he was assigned to the 3rd makes him in his mind "GB" qualified.

An explanation: there was a time period - late 70's thru to early 90's - when every person assigned to a Special Forces unit wore the units distinctive headgear: i.e. beret, rifle green. Those that were Special Forces qualified wore a full flash behind the Special Forces regimental crest. Support personnel wore a horizontal bar indicating Group colors (the "Candy Stripe") with the regimental crest above. When Special Forces became it's own branch in 1984 and the "long tab" was authorized, all personnel assigned to a Special Forces unit wore the green beret with full flash.

At some point between 1988-92 (when I was overseas) sanity somehow prevailed and support personnel were no longer authorized to wear the green beret. Nowadays support personnel in Special Forces units wear the maroon beret of Airborne forces, with full flash behind the regimental crest.

Dickey has admitted that he never went through the Q-course yet that is a non-issue to him. In his thinking, the Army wouldn't have given him a green beret if he wasn't qualified.

Mr. Dickey states in his bio that he is a "Green Beret veteran" - this is unusual as most Special Forces qualified soldiers (who earn the Green Beret through training and award of the 18-series MOS) usually describe ourselves as "Special Forces" - the title "Green Beret" is an unofficial nickname glamorized by Hollywood. We do use this phrase to describe ourselves to civilians in order to distinguish ourselves from other Special Operations Forces - civilians usually do not understand the difference between "Special Forces" and Navy SEALs, US Army Rangers, Delta, Marine Force Recon (MARSOF), or Air Force ST units.

Ron Dickey has been deleting most of our comments off his Facebook page and then blocking us. Funny, first he thanks us for the post exposing him as a fraud and then he deletes the comment and blocks.

Ron Dickey never went through the US Army Special Forces Q-course. Ron Dickey falsely claims to be a "Green Beret veteran".

The Stolen Valor Act of 2013 makes it a Federal crime for people to falsely claim military service with the intent to obtain money, property or other tangible benefits, or to pass themselves off as war heroes by wearing medals they didn't rightfully earn.

An earlier version of the Stolen Valor Act, passed in 2005, was struck down in June 2012 when the Supreme Court ruled that lying about military heroics was constitutionally protected speech unless there was intent to gain some benefit or something of value by fraud.

Email for the main paper in Ron Dickey's district: http://djournal.com/contact-us/ and the main news channel is http://www.wtva.com/default.aspx


Ron Dickey also claims membership in the Military Order of the Purple Heart. I'm pretty sure a cook who got wounded in Desert Storm would stand out, but oddly nobody in the Special Forces brotherhood can recall this. At this time we have initiated a Freedom of Information request for release of records. The MOPH website says membership is open to those ". . . who were awarded the Purple Heart or who work for the organization." This explains his membership since he was employed by the MOPH at one point.

We do not suffer fools lightly, and we have zero tolerance policy towards phony wannabees who fraudulently claim Special Forces status. At this time an investigation is underway to determine if this is a valid case of Stolen Valor. Yes, the lawyers are involved.

STORMBRINGER SENDS

Guide to Automatic Protection With Home Security

While it might be hyperbole to claim that it keeps people up at night, most people would still prefer to protect their homes in whatever way they can. With home security systems, homeowners can protect their homes against a variety of threats and provide automatic support from third party companies.

Protection Away From Home

Many home security companies provide a level of automatic protection for customers. With a subscription, customers get technology installed in their homes that automatically scan and sense. Sparing all the details about how these various technologies work together, it suffices to say that they automatically detect any intruders. If intruders are detected, then the companies can place a call to your home to make sure that things are all right, and they can also dispatch the necessary emergency services to your house in the case that there are intruders in your home. With these technologies, home security systems help to ensure that your home is protected from burglars at all hours of the day.

If you're looking for a more private form of home security, then you can install a number of electronics such as motion sensors that can alarm you but not a third party company. These might include home security cameras, which record a days' worth of footage and can be useful if your home gets burglarized, and you're more likely to be able to help police find out who committed the crime. These come in a variety of models to suit many different individual needs, such as with night vision and automatically turning on with infrared sensors. Other models wirelessly transmit data to some type of recorder, be it to videotape or a hard drive on a digital video recorder (DVR). All of this home security technology helps to protect your home, and in the case that it is trespassed upon, you can more easily identify the assailants and help police.

However, home security systems can also help protect against other more natural, dangers, such as fires. Smoke alarms are just one basic form of fire protection, but newer systems may automatically alert the fire department and help to dispatch emergency services to your house. Even a precious few minutes can mean the difference between some relatively minor smoke damage and irreparable damage to your home. Be it burglars or fires, home security protects your home against any dangers that it may face. Not only does it protect your home, but it also defends you and your family as well.

Monday, July 21, 2014

VIEW OF PARIS, SUMMER 1886


Click on this image, stand away from your computer screen, about five or six feet, squint your eyes a bit and look at this picture, and then you will see the scene as the artist saw it, with his own eyes.

This is the genius of Vincent Van Gogh.

My father taught me to appreciate Van Gogh this way.

STORMBRINGER SENDS


Sunday, July 20, 2014

JAMES GARNER - April 7, 1928 – July 19, 2014

Today we honor actor James Garner – a Korean War veteran who received two Purple Hearts – who died Saturday night at 86. An infantry soldier before he made it big in movies and television, Garner took a USO tour to Vietnam in 1967. He will be missed.


Maverick has gone to that Big Riverboat Casino in the Sky . . .

STORMBRINGER SENDS





TOLERANCE

Jiggs McDonald, NHL Hall of Fame broadcaster speaking in Ontario, says. "I am truly perplexed that so many of my friends are against another mosque being built in Toronto."


"I think it should be the goal of every Canadian to be tolerant regardless of their religious beliefs. Thus the mosque should be allowed, in an effort to promote tolerance.

That is why I also propose that two nightclubs be opened next door to the mosque, thereby promoting tolerance from within the mosque.

We could call one of the clubs, which would be gay, "The Turban Cowboy," and the other a topless bar called "You Mecca Me Hot."


Next door should be a butcher shop that specializes in pork, and adjacent to that an open-pit barbecue pork restaurant, called "Iraq of Ribs."

Across the street there could be a lingerie store called " Victoria Keeps Nothing Secret," with sexy mannequins in the window modelling the goods.


Next door to the lingerie shop there would be room for an adult sex toy shop, "Koranal Knowledge," its name in flashing neon lights, and on the other side a liquor store called 'Morehammered.'


All of this would encourage Muslims to demonstrate the tolerance they demand of us, so their mosque issue would not be a problem for others."

Yes, we should promote tolerance . . .


STORMBRINGER SENDS

Saturday, July 19, 2014

CRISIS-GATE

It's just getting crazier and crazier out there, people. No sooner than one crisis erupts and begins to gather traction than another emerges to replace it on the national consciousness to the point it is overwhelming. At some the rational mind begins to wonder: does all this never-ending madness serve to benefit the one who's stated goal is to "change America"? - S.L.

Anyone who ever went through Basic Training or Boot Camp knows the most effective way to change or alter a group of individuals is to totally break them down through a sort of controlled mind-numbing chaos and confusion, then build them up again to function as a cohesive team, a single body.


This kind of behavior-altering indoctrination is absolutely necessary for military organizations but I do not want to be part of a civilian society conformed to group-think on so many issues that not so very long ago were considered unconventional, unorthodox, and just plain weird.

What was so wrong with America that needed such revolutionary change? The only country in the history of the world founded on the principles of freedom and the rights of the citizenry over the power of the government, 238 years of unparalleled prosperity . . . what were we doing so wrong that required breaking it to re-build it again?

Do we really need to hobble our productivity, our prosperity, and our very individualism in exchange for government-funded birth control? Obamacare has broken our healthcare system to the point that it is now significantly more expensive than before; and just ask any veteran about the benefits of Federal government mis-managed medical system - I can tell you personal horror stories.

Please somebody explain to me the benefits to our culture of gay marriage, homosexuals serving openly in the military and acceptance of transsexuals as some kind of artificial third sex? What possible gain is there from the surrender of our sovereignty to unending waves of third-worlders who are given free reign to the benefits our society - at taxpayers expense - without medical screenings and criminal background checks?

As incident and scandal pile up on top of one another with ever-increasing frequency one loses track . . . a snapshot of where we're
are at this moment in time:

Ukraine: Bodies Rained Down From the Sky - Stench of Death Permeates Crash Site

50 billion reasons to worry about stocks


Berlusconi acquitted in sex-for-hi​re case - No big surprise here; their Parliament of Whores is more out-of-control than our own.

Pentagon: Russia helped deploy missile that hit plane


No shit, Sherlock. Does anybody imagine for a minute that this "Separatist Movement" is anything other than a Russian-sponsored insurgency? Where are these "separatists" getting their rifles, machineguns, grenades and RPGs? Systems like the 9K37 Buk (NATO SA-11 'Gadfly') are incredibly complex not to mention very expensive. There is no question the origin of that weapons system, and the men & officers manning it and it's associated radar array. The man who pushed the button on the missile that shot down MH17 possesses a Russian military ID card, no doubt about it.

BUK (NATO codename: SA-11 GADFLY) Self-Propelled Surface-to-Air Missile (SPM) system with four-round launcher traversed to the rear. Credit: Christopher Foss

Russian TV reporter quits over crash coverage - Even a Russian can take only so much dis-information.

Malaysia Airlines faces doubtful future - I'll be surprised if Malaysia Airlines even exists six months from now.

What Would a US - Russi​a War Look Like? - Vladimir Putin is getting increasingly bolder in his bid to re-establish the post-Soviet Russian Empire because he knows NATO and the United States will let him get away with mass-murder.

Reports: Iran Nuclear Talks Extended - We reward & assist Iran in it's bid to become a nuclear-armed terrorist state.

Video Evidence Shows Illegal Immigrant Children Arriving at BWI Early Friday Morning - Uncleared, Uneducated Third Worlders Bringing Crime & Disease to a Neighborhood Near You

Islamic State Kills 270 in Syrian Gas Field 'Massacre'
- Where the heck is John Kerry. Whatever happened to Barack Obama's 'Red Line'?

Christians in Iraq City Told by Islamists: Convert, Pay or Die
- An Islamic tradition going back to before the Crusades, in accordance with the Koran.


Where is Barack Obama? Conflict spreads as the U.S. steps back from world stage
- YEAH - where the hell IS Waldo?

The Greatest Possible Problem for Europe - There are now at least twice as many young British Muslims who have gone to Syria to fight alongside ISIS and other such groups than there are fighting for Queen and country here in the British armed forces. The Israel-haters are no real problem for Israel, but they are the greatest possible problem for Europe.

Hiding Hamas’ Weapons at the UN - Hundreds and thousands more reasons to despise the UN.

Peace never gets off the ground with this crew.

Russia Has Become Dangerous Again - The illusion of a stable Europe died yesterday with the murdered passengers of MH17.

Violent MS-13 Gang Members Leave Graffiti On 'Child' Processing Center Walls


And lastly, a start point: something we CAN do:

My Simple, 4-Step Plan to Stop the Invasion of Illegals

As Obama executes head ducks and weaves from one outrageous scandal to the next, it is becoming obvious that his strategy is a cultural shock-and-awe campaign on the American people.

STORMBRINGER SENDS

Thursday, July 17, 2014

My First Woodwork Project - Building a Shed

My first woodwork project was a wooden storage shed. I needed to get my lawnmower and other garden tools out of the garage so that I could use it for parking my wife's car. I had no idea how to build one, but soon after pricing them at the local hardware store, I decided I could build one for a lot less than buying one.

First I needed a plan for my shed, so I scoured the hardware store, and found that the books they had only had 1 or 2 plans each, and none that were appealing. I went to local library, and found some books from the 1950?s and 1960?s on woodworking, but the projects they had were kind of dated. They didn't really match the style I was looking for in my backyard. So, I turned to the internet. I found tons of sites offering me all kinds of different sheds. Some were made of plastic, others of steel or aluminum, and even some made of wood. Again I was back to buying something for more money than I thought I could build it for. I wanted a project, that I (a beginner) could complete, without the high cost of buying a shed.

Then I found it. Or rather, my neighbor Jim did. A site that had thousands of woodworking projects to choose from. I signed up and got access to shed bases (I learned I needed one of these as well), Amish sheds, garden sheds, storage sheds, workshops, and decks. The selection is amazing. The plans were easy to follow and gave a complete shopping list for each woodwork project. All I had to do was print it out and go to the hardware store.

My first weekend was spent in gathering my materials, and getting organized. On the following weekend, I invited my neighbor Jim and his brother over to help me raise a shed. On Sunday, we finished and I made some BBQ ribs to repay my friends for their help. Anyway, that was the beginning of my love affair with woodworking.

Are you someone who enjoys working with wood? If yes, then I have great news for you. I have discovered a site that can give you instant access to over 12,000 shed plans and other great woodworking projects. It has everything from birdhouses and porch swings, to decks and wooden storage sheds to help you make your house an inviting home.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

From The Wonderful People Who Brought You World War One

Israel's newly elected President Reuven Rivlin prays at the Western Wall in Jerusalem on June 10, 2014. Much of today’s conflict in the Middle East has its roots in contradictory promises made by colonial powers to different ethnic groups during World War I. Getty Images

First World War Centenary – Middle East Conflict
by Laurence Eyton


On Nov. 2, 1917, British Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour sent a letter to Baron Walter Rothschild, a leader of the British Jewish community. Published in the Times (of London) newspaper one week later, the letter said: “His Majesty’s government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object.”

The manner in which the nascent Jewish state was created by the British has had far-reaching consequences.

Confronted with the collapse of the Ottoman Empire as a result of the war, Britain and France signed an agreement to divide up the territories. This deal contradicted promises to local Arabs of self-government should they successfully rebel against the Ottomans.

Realizing that the U.S., which had recently entered the war, didn’t look kindly on colonial land grabs, the British made a commitment to support a Jewish homeland in Palestine, something for which leading Jewish groups had been campaigning for since the 1890s. The British hoped the declaration would get American Jews to pressure their government to allow Britain to keep control of Palestine after the war, valuable to Britain because it could secure the east bank of the Suez Canal, a waterway of strategic importance to its empire.

After the war, Jewish immigration proceeded apace. Land was a major bone of contention. Settlers bought it, sometimes from absentee landlords living in Syria or Lebanon liquidating foreign assets, sometimes from local Arabs. Many of these owners, according to the British high commissioner in Palestine, John Chancellor, were so mired in debt to moneylenders that they had little choice but to sell.

The settlers, wanting to farm the land they bought, then relied on British authorities to evict Arab farmers who wouldn’t leave. Evictions produced resentment, then attacks. The settlers created their own militia; Arabs responded in kind.

By 1930, Chancellor was calling the Balfour Declaration “a colossal blunder” as the British found themselves trying to keep the peace between two increasingly bellicose communities. Eventually an Arab revolt broke out in 1935, which persuaded the British to try to restrict Jewish immigration.

The end result was a Jewish revolt, secretly backed by the French, which led directly to the foundation of the state of Israel in 1948, and numerous Arab attempts to destroy it thereafter. Much of the animosity that has roiled this region for almost a century can be traced back to the policy-making and colonial rivalry immediately after the end of World War I.


from 100 Years, 100 Legacies - WSJ 16 July 2014

STORMBRINGER SENDS











Monday, July 14, 2014

THE SHOOTING NEVER STOPPED . . . SOUTHEAST ASIA, 2014

From the Small Wars Journal . . .

Off patrol with Royal Thai Army Special Forces

The RTN Victory

Regarding the battlefield victory on 13 February, Royal Thai Marines (a branch of the Royal Thai Navy) and Royal Thai Navy SEALs ambushed and routed more than 60 insurgents that attempted a nighttime raid on a Marine base in Bacho, Narathiwat. The insurgents had laid intricate assault plans for a complex nighttime operation. They sported camouflage uniforms, assault vests, and some had attached flashlights to their assault rifles. The flex cuffs some of them carried indicate they were aiming to secure prisoners, possibly to use as leverage in up-and-coming peace talks. The insurgents even covertly inserted a forward attack element within 100 yards of the base hours before the assault began. They had indeed done their homework on the base, demonstrating their professionalism.

Thai authorities, however, had obtained detailed intelligence on the raid beforehand. One report has RTN forces killing a top insurgent who had the raid plans on his person. Another says insurgents had infiltrated the village next to the Marine base, and villagers informed on them. It could also have been a combination of these two scenarios, or neither. In Thailand, there are usually multiple explanations for such happenings, and back-stories abound as well.

Thai "Tahan Praan" mercenary - these lethal operators seem to be everywhere the action is and they have wide open "Rules of Engagement".

Regardless, the RTN exploited intelligence quickly for use by direct action (DA) forces. Commanders quietly inserted Recon Marines and SEALs into the camp. These elite forces set up an ambush, and then patiently watched and waited. When they spotted the insurgents’ forward assault element low crawling into position at around 9 pm, they held their fire, exhibiting high discipline. They wanted the entire assault element to come into their kill zone, which they knew would happen a few hours later.

When the insurgents finally launched their assault, they ran into a hail of weapons fire as the Recon Marines and SEALs quickly established fire superiority. Within 20 minutes, they had killed 16 insurgents. Realizing their mistake, the insurgents broke off the attack, still under fire, and Thai government forces pursued them, following blood trails and tire tracks. They continued into the next day, checking medical clinics and hospitals for people with gunshot wounds.

Badly defeated, the insurgents were in dire need of flexing their muscles so as not to lose recruits and let morale slide, so they struck back quickly. They tried to bomb 50 civilian targets throughout the south but were only partially successful due to the amateurish placement of the devices. They did manage to firebomb several businesses in downtown Pattani and assassinate a few people, however.

The RTN’s victory suggests the government is following Sir Robert Thompson’s COIN adage (paraphrased): “Get in place that which is correct, and that which is sustainable, and play for the breaks.” Bangkok had an intelligence system up and in place to exploit insurgent missteps, it had DA as­sets plugged into the intelligence system ready for deployment, and it had the leadership and expertise to bring it all together and make it happen. And the RTG also caught a lucky break, an unspoken requirement in COIN.

Thai Border Patrol Police - these guys take care of business.

National police chief Pol Gen Wichean Potephosree visits border patrol officers in Kantharalak

I trained Royal Thai Army Special Forces, SEALs, and I actually completed the jump that earned me my star & wreath on my jump wings leading a stick of Thai Border Patrol Policemen out of a Royal Thai Air Force C-47 Dakota over Haadyai, South Thailand - the same place this battle took place - I gave the jump commands IN THAI and once I hit the ground I didn't speak a word of English the rest of the week . . . its good to see our efforts were worth it. Like they say in Thailand: "Chok Dee!" (Good Luck)

STORMBRINGER SENDS

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Why Build A House Using Steel House Framing?

Many people have heard of steel house frames but don’t know what the benefits of steel house framing are to make a determination if it is right for them. There are many advantages and solutions to some of the building problems that builders, homeowners and contractors have that can be solved by using steel framing.

Cost is the primary concern for any builder and homeowner and the cost directly influences the decision to build a home. What many people are unaware of is that steel framing is more cost effective than using wood framing allowing more to be built with less money.

One of the greatest benefits of steel house framing is the strength of steel, damage by moisture and heat or warping is never an issue or concern with steel frames. A steel frame home or building will hold up against the elements all year round and pests such as termites will not be a problem compared with wood frame homes and buildings.

With the benefits of strength that steel frames provide more variety of room styles and shapes become available as well as opportunities to have greater open floor plans and spaces, also by taking advantage of the strength of steel you won’t need load bearing walls that are required in the typical home that uses wood framing.

Green homes are becoming more popular with people and governments and going green has become a major concern across the world, and the benefits of steel house framing is that it is good for the environment. By using steel framing in homes and commercial buildings fewer trees will be chopped down thus people can contribute in a positive way to help stave of deforestation.

Steel frames are much easier to work with because there are pre-fitted pieces and pre-made kits available which can remove the task of drilling almost completely, this can save builders much time with their projects allowing more to be done in less amount of time. For some builder that have multiple houses under construction at the same time using steel frames instead of wood frames eliminates the worry of inclement weather damage or environmental exposure to their wood frames.

These are just a few of the benefits of steel house framing over using the conventional wood frames in home and other construction projects. Whether you’re a homeowner or a builder you will spend less time, money and get a stronger product that last much longer by using steel frames.

PHONY WANNABE POSER ALERT

Stopped in MO, Saline County, told the Officer he was trying to get to Ft. Bragg so he could board a Blackhawk to be deployed.


Schwartz, Joseph M. of 705 Front St, Apt 1, Georgetown, SC 29440




That looks like a lot of weed ... definitely more than a possession rap this guy is going down for trafficking. I hope the judge considers his disgraceful behavior - disrespect to the uniform - and sentences him for a long stay in the Big House.

I have been on those super-secret Blackhawks with a range of half way around the world . . . THOSE Blackhawks are painted with SUPER HIGH SPEED paint! Top Secret! Only for the Elite . . .

STORMBRINGER SENDS

Saturday, July 12, 2014

OPERATION PROTECTIVE EDGE: IDF EFFORTS TO SPARE CIVILIANS IN GAZA

Before they strike a Hamas target within Gaza, the IDF warns residents to get out. Hamas orders them to stay in place, in order to create "martyrs". This is the ultimate exploitation for propaganda - brought to you by the terrorist organization Hamas.



Declassified video and photo show terror compounds located within civilian concentrations, including Hamas training ground adjacent to school.

Declassified photo: Gaza terrorists used a mosque located near Palestinian homes as a place to hide rockets and gather militants. Our aircraft struck this mosque last night in order to disable Hamas from firing at Israel. Terrorist organizations systematically use mosques to conceal weapons and create underground tunnels within populated areas.

It is against the Law of Land Warfare - as codified by the Hague and Geneva Conventions, to strike hospitals, clinics or other medical facilities displaying the Red Cross/Red Crescent/Magen David or to strike churches/mosques/synagogues, cultural edifices, prisoner-of-war camps or transportation or any civilian/non-combatant facilities UNLESS those facilities are being used for military purposes - i.e. weapons storage and/or launch sites, to house militants or for observation posts. In such circumstances, it is WITHIN the Law of Land Warfare to strike such places. In other words, the use of civilians as human shields is a war crime - as Hamas is currently doing in Gaza.

Hamas tells Gazans to ignore IDF's call to leave border area | The Times of Israel

Hamas is doing what terrorist organizations do: holding innocents hostage under threat of death. Hamas is directly responsible for all civilian deaths in Gaza.

STORMBRINGER SENDS

Friday, July 11, 2014

CONCEALED CARRY PERMITS UP = MURDER RATES DOWN

“When you allow people to carry concealed handguns, you see changes in the behavior of criminals."


A dramatic spike in the number of Americans with permits to carry concealed weapons coincides with an equally stark drop in violent crime, according to a new study, which Second Amendment advocates say makes the case that more guns can mean safer streets.

The study by the Crime Prevention Research Center found that 11.1 million Americans now have permits to carry concealed weapons, up from 4.5 million in 2007. The 146 percent increase has come even as both murder and violent crime rates have dropped by 22 percent.

“When you allow people to carry concealed handguns, you see changes in the behavior of criminals," said the center’s president, John R. Lott, a Fox News contributor. “Some criminals stop committing crimes, others move on to crimes in which they don’t come into contact with victims and others actually move to areas where they have less fear of being confronted by armed victims.”

Read the rest of it HERE

From 1530 Thursday until 0330 Monday there were 82 shootings with 14 fatalities in Chicago. Clearly shows that the Chicago brand of gun control is less than effective.

STORMBRINGER SENDS

Thursday, July 10, 2014

"LIFE IN ISRAEL" - RUNNING FROM GAZA ROCKETS

Raw video of rockets from Terrorist Controlled Gaza flying overAshdod, southern Israel on July 10th:




A close friend near Ramat Aviv, Israel reports: 5 rockets just fired at Tel Aviv; all 5 intercepted by Iron Dome. Our first time in the car during an alert--everyone pulls off the road and huddles under trees on the shoulder . . .


. . . we were less than a mile from home. The noise of the explosion was huge.


Pray for Peace

STORMBRINGER SENDS

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

"SCALE A HUNDRED FOOT WALL, GET SHOT AT THE WHOLE TIME . . .

" . . . then come up here and kick their ass . . .”

POINTE DU HOC, NORMANDYAlex Quade Reports

Patriotism, service, sacrifice; these are the themes one hears often during this 4th of July holiday weekend. President Barack Obama gave specific examples of these themes, when he praised the “Greatest Generation” of veterans from World War Two and tied-in this current “9/11 Generation” of warriors and veterans, at the 70th Anniversary of D-Day, three weeks ago in Normandy, France.



Five years ago, on the 65th anniversary of D-Day, I was an embedded reporter with Sgt. 1st Class Cory Remsburg and his Ranger brothers, as they explored the windy cliffs of Normandy and explained what this place and this moment meant to them.

“The overall bigger picture is something incredible, like liberating another country.  I’m excited, you can’t replicate that feeling.  It’s so cool to come out here.  This is legitimately a once in a lifetime opportunity to come out, especially with some of these old vets out here, there’s this 2nd Ranger battalion guy who scaled Pointe du Hoc,” Ranger Remsburg said.

“You see this in movies.  ‘The Longest Day’, ‘Saving Private Ryan’, but until you actually walk here, you can’t truly appreciate what happened.  To think 65 years ago, this was a scene of complete & utter chaos,” Ranger Fogle said.

The elite, battle-hardened men shared their “human” side.  They called this place their “Mecca”.
“The impossible mission:  they kept trying to assault the cliffs, and everyone was getting wiped out. 

Down on the beach they were like, ‘We have to get those cliffs’, and that’s where the phrase ‘Rangers Lead the Way’ comes from. He turned around and said, ‘Rangers lead the way!’  2nd & 5th came up, took a lot of losses, but they got it done,” Ranger Fogle explained.

Read the rest of it HERE

STORMBRINGER SENDS

Sunday, July 6, 2014

RANGER ! ! !


Standing Rules of Rogers’ Rangers #20:

Let the enemy come till he’s almost close enough to touch. Then let him have it, jump out and finish him with your hatchet.


STORMBRINGER SENDS

Cost-Effective Ways of Improving Your Home

Remodeling your living room or kitchen or any other part of your house can mean another penny to spend. However, redecorating and remodeling don't necessarily entail high cost of materials and services from a trained person or professional. Buying new furniture is not important. All you need is to repaint and reuse materials.

Like for example your kitchen cabinets; if you want the cabinet to look different try to remove the doors and cut out a square portion on it and replace it with a glass. This will expose the contents of the cabinets adding more class to your kitchen. Compare the amount you spend when you buy a new set with just this simple makeover? Buying a new set is much expensive, right? So, just be creative in doing your home improvement ideas and you will still get the same satisfaction.

If you are planning to have a mini garden in front of your house or you already have one but you want to rearrange and remodel the landscape, you can still do it without spending too much. Take advantage of sales and promos offered by nursery stores that sell plants for your garden. Or you can search online and order some cheap packed seeds which you can grow in your garden. The trick really here is to be resourceful and creative in everything.

There is always a new and fresh idea that you can apply in your home. By replacing what is worn out already is a good start. DIY projects now are very common. Replace your old flooring with new tiles and apply DIY. You can save hundreds of dollars already with this concept. Besides, there are guides and references which you can always use when performing the tiling.

Inspect your doorknobs, faucets and locks if they are still in good condition. Replace any broken part. Prompt action can prevent any further damage. Don't wait for the whole bathroom sink to collapse before replacing or tightening any loosened nut.

Another tip is to add touches to your interior that can highlight the room. A good painting on the wall can entirely change the look of your room. Try to invest on good curtains too. If you used to hang plain ones try the printed fabrics this time. Sometimes a change of course can make things look better than sticking with the norm. Table top decors in bright colors like yellow and orange are also good add-ons in making your home anew.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

AIRBORNE ALL THE WAY


Super Duper Paratroopers




Mighty Ungawa Two-Fifty-Foot Tower


Knees in the Breeze



Silver Wings upon their Chests, These are Men Americas Best





C-130 Rollin' Down the Strip, Airborne Daddy on a One Way Trip

K-Bar Grease Gun by my side, these are the tools that I live by


If I die on the Old Drop Zone, Box me up and ship me home




Pin my wings upon my chest, Bury me in the Leaning Rest




Load 'em up . . .

and kick 'em out!

. . . AIRBORNE ALL THE WAY ! ! !

STORMBRINGER SENDS