Mass. And NY Are Feeling The Ugly Side Of Minimum Wage Hikes

H/T The Lid.

Hike the minimum wage to $15.00 per hour and lose jobs.

On the bright side, they lost a higher paying job.

 

After hiking their minimum wages, the states of New York and Massachusetts have found that, far from being a net positive, the wage hikes have resulted in job loss and economic chaos.

The states have discovered job loss, store closures, and reduced hours of work for low wage workers, according to Forbes.

The magazine recently noted that the “ugly side” of the Minimum Wage outweigh the good parts.

“The ugly side is the payroll tsunami they unleash for smaller businesses, already under stress from soaring healthcare costs and rents,” Forbes wrote.

For some of these businesses, the minimum wage hikes tip the balance between staying in business and going out of business.

That’s what happened to once iconic Boston restaurant Durgin-Park in Faneuil Hall. It closed the doors after two centuries in operation, as it couldn’t cope with wage and healthcare premium hikes.

The wage hike killed these workers’ jobs.

This is a significant loss for the city’s historic district, the magazine notes.

But this one, historic restaurant is far from the only place that the Minimum Wage destroyed.

For other small businesses, minimum wage hikes have yet to tip the balance between staying in business or going out of business. But they force them to cut employee hours or lay-off employees to cope with the higher payroll. “First, we have to cut overtime,” says Chris, a franchise owner in Long Island. “Next, we have to lay people off, if we want to stay in business.”

Nowhere is this more evident than NYC, which has seen wage hikes year after year, now paying what the ‘Fight for $15’ movement has fought for around the country.

In March the Foundation for Economic Education reported that following the labor movement’s “Fight for $15” victory, which imposed steep annual increases in mandatory wages for workers, New York City experienced its sharpest decline in restaurant jobs in nearly 20 years. Twenty years? That means NYC  lost more restaurant jobs with the coming of the $15 per hour Minimum Wage than it did in the aftermath of the terror attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

Starting this year, NYC raised its minimum wage to $15, a 15% increase from the 2018 level, and a 34% hike from 2017. That was on top of recent hikes in healthcare costs. It was, as Forbes put it, a “payroll tsunami.”

So, what ended up happening after this tsunami rolled over the city?

“Close to three-quarters of restaurants in New York City have cut labor input since the minimum wage was raised to $15 per hour,” the magazine wrote.

That’s according to a survey by The NYC Hospitality Alliance. Specifically, 76.5% of full-service restaurant respondents said they had to cut employee hours and 36% said they cut jobs in 2018 in response to the mandated minimum wage hikes.

That’s consistent with BLS data, which show that New York City full service restaurant employment has gone from an 8% growth back in 2012 to a -2% growth in the last two years.

According to FEE, Economist Mark Perry says this ‘restaurant recession’ is likely the result of the series of mandatory wage hikes that brought the city’s minimum wage to $15 an hour,”

In other words, once again leftist policies have proven to be business and job killers.

CONFIRMED: Off-Duty Border Agent Prevents Synagogue Shooting From Becoming A Massacre

H/T Flag And Cross.

A classic example of a good guy with a gun stopping a bad guy with a gun and saving lives.

AND HE GOT A SHOUT OUT FROM TRUMP!

On Saturday morning, a shooting took place at a San Diego synagogue.

Three people were injured. Unfortunately, one was killed during the Jewish holiday.

Here’s the scoop…

From AP News:

A 19-year-old man opened fire inside a synagogue near San Diego as worshippers celebrated the last day of a major Jewish holiday, killing a woman and wounding three others Saturday, authorities said.

President Donald Trump and other elected officials decried what they called an anti-Semitic attack exactly six months since 11 people were killed at a Pittsburgh synagogue in the deadliest assault on Jews in U.S. history.

The man, whose name was not released, used an AR-type assault weapon to shoot worshippers at Chabad of Poway, San Diego County Sheriff William Gore told reporters.

WATCH:

 

 

It was then learned that an off-duty border patrol agent jumped into action:

BREAKING: NBC San Diego reports that an off-duty U.S. Border Patrol agent who was in the Poway synagogue opened fire on the suspect and prevented the attack from being significantly worse.

Ryan Saavedra

@RealSaavedra

BREAKING: NBC San Diego reports that an off-duty U.S. Border Patrol agent who was in the Poway synagogue opened fire on the suspect and prevented the attack from being significantly worse.

6,568 people are talking about this

Enter President Trump with the shout out:

Sincerest THANK YOU to our great Border Patrol Agent who stopped the shooter at the Synagogue in Poway, California. He may have been off duty but his talents for Law Enforcement weren’t!

Donald J. Trump

@realDonaldTrump

Sincerest THANK YOU to our great Border Patrol Agent who stopped the shooter at the Synagogue in Poway, California. He may have been off duty but his talents for Law Enforcement weren’t!

35.5K people are talking about this

Brandon Judd is the president of the National Border Patrol Council.

According to him, the United States has never faced a border crisis quite like the one we’re witnessing today.

And yet, Democrats continue to insist there is no problem at the border.

LIES.

From Daily Wire:

In a radio interview on Tuesday, National Border Patrol Council President Brandon Judd said that U.S. Border Patrol agents are facing the “worst crisis” the agency has ever seen since its formation in 1924.

When asked about the 20,000 migrants that Mexico warned are presently approaching the border, Judd said there is not much Border Patrol can do.

Judd noted, “We ultimately end up letting them go. They cross the border illegally and then we give them what we call a ‘notice to appear,’ and we release them on their own recognizance and what that means is they promise us that they will return for all of their proceedings, but we know that they never do…They know this, that’s why the numbers are so large.

He added, “This is the worst crisis we have ever faced in the history of the Border Patrol, and we’re going back to 1924. In my twenty-one year career as a Border Patrol agent, I’ve never seen it like this.

Judd concluded, “It’s never been like this before this is the worst it’s ever been and if we don’t do something, it’s going to continue to get worse.

President Trump has had it up to here with Mexico when it comes to immigration.

He’s tired of seeing America’s southern neighbor allow migrants from Central America to stroll through Mexico and into the United States.

Obviously, Trump is not alone.

However, 45 has the authority to do something about it.

POTUS is now warning that he may shut down the southern border entirely.

His tweet:

Mexico is doing NOTHING to help stop the flow of illegal immigrants to our Country. They are all talk and no action. Likewise, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador have taken our money for years, and do Nothing. The Dems don’t care, such BAD laws. May close the Southern Border!

Donald J. Trump

@realDonaldTrump

Mexico is doing NOTHING to help stop the flow of illegal immigrants to our Country. They are all talk and no action. Likewise, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador have taken our money for years, and do Nothing. The Dems don’t care, such BAD laws. May close the Southern Border!

55.3K people are talking about this

WATCH:

 

 

‘The Highwaymen’ on Netflix is Driving Liberals Mad

H/T Godfather Politics.

The Highway Men in spite of what Snowflakes think or say if you have Netflix is worth watching.

Content consumers wary of any film or TV series branded as a Netflix original given the general track record may understandably hesitate about adding The Highwaymen to their watch list. The Highwaymen chronicles the events after the government hires legendary retired Texas Ranger Frank Hamer (Kevin Costner) in 1934 to essentially do an OO7 on violent celebrity gangsters/folk heroes Bonnie and Clyde. The no-nonsense Hamer brings another Ranger colleague out of retirement for the road trip pursuit.

According to the Netflix description, “Two steely former Texas Rangers are tasked with tracking and killing infamous criminals Bonnie and Clyde in this crime drama based on real events.”

 

It was an SJW-drenched Guardian review of the Costner film that drew one’s attention to it at all. Apparently, the movie exposes toxic masculinity rather than correcting the Hollywood-distorted historical record.

The Guardian article (and others of that ilk) also constitutes yet another PC attempt to apply 2019 standards to conduct from 80 or so years ago, which admittedly in this film includes a police brutality sequence.

Ranger Danger

According to the Guardian‘s politically correct template, the film presents “an old-fashioned notion of masculinity rooted in insecurity and smallness…Watching Costner try in vain to scale a wooden fence, a viewer may see outmoded mores of manhood fading before their very eyes.”

This analysis is apparently not meant as a parody.

It turns out that The Highwaymen road, while a little slow in parts, is well worth your viewing time regardless of your political views, if any.

This is especially meaningful if merely watching it creates angst for typically phony, left-wing professional movie critics.

Direction, writing, acting, production values, editing, and cinematography are all first rate. The film even includes an old-timey car chase.

In fact, it’s worth watching a second time to gain the full benefit of its subtleties.

The Highwaymen currently has a 77 percent audience favorability on Rotten Tomatoes, but just a 56 percent approval based on reviews.

PJ Media thinks it knows why:

“[R]eaction to the film is almost as interesting as the film itself.

“On both Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic, the movie clocks in at mid-to-high 50s scores, generally signifying a mediocre effort.

“But a closer look reveals something different: Reviewers who actually reviewed the movie are mostly positive. Reviewers who reviewed their perception of the movie’s politics account for more than half the negative reviews.”

PC Police Dislike this Cops and Robbers Film

As one Guardian commenter joked about the news outlet’s reviewer, “He’s woke AF. He managed to shoehorn a MAGA reference in there however I’m disappointed to see no mention of how an oppressive patriarchy, a gender pay gap and sexual inequality drove Bonnie to a life of crime.”

In an article behind a paywall, the Washington Post apparently claims that the real Hamer championed Jim Crow, apparently overlooking the key fact that the Ranger fought against the Klan in West Texas.

With an additional compilation of politics-obsessed criticism of The Highwaymen, which similarly included a reference to “outmoded mores of manhood,” Lileks.comquipped the following:

 

“In any case, the outmoded mores on display are this: being the guy who leaves behind a comfy life to eliminate some bandits who are killing anyone who crosses them, and does so without bitching about his own problems. If the new more of manhood is to sit on Twitter all day and bitch incessantly about the world and occasionally write books about Vampire movies, you might be surprised to find that the idea is not universally celebrated.”

 

Added the Washington Free Beacon:

“As James Lileks noted… the revulsion some critics feel toward Hancock’s film because it dares subvert a Boomer cinematic classic by showing killers to be killers is faintly embarrassing…We can’t be surprised when the images of beautiful killers resonate more than the grumpy old lawmen who ended their reign of terror. As much as America has changed over the last eighty-plus years, from the Depression to desegregation to détente to decline, some fads—like glamorizing murderous nutjobs—just never go out of style.”

 

Non-Toxic Masculinity?

You may recall that the 1967 Arthur Penn movie starring Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway immortalized the couple’s famous crime spree.

The Bonnie and Clyde characters only make cameos in the Netflix version, up to their famous confrontation with Hamer and his posse (filmed on the actual road where it occurred in real life).

 

Moreover, the marketplace seems to be speaking:

In its first month on the streaming network, 40 million-plus households watched The Highwaymen, according to Deadline Hollywood.

 

Jon du Toit@jondutoit

Looks like Netflix is testing the huge but largely ignored conservative film market, and some liberal reviewers aren’t happy about it.

The Highwaymen is a workmanlike breath of fresh air, utterly devoid of SJW propaganda. It’s actually a subversive film.https://www.theguardian.com/film/2019/mar/10/the-highwaymen-review-netflix-kevin-costner-woody-harrelson 

The Highwaymen review – Netflix take on Bonnie and Clyde is criminally bad

Kevin Costner and Woody Harrelson star as the cops who took down the infamous duo in an odious and dimwitted thriller

theguardian.com

692 people are talking about this

 

Hamer Time

With credentials issued by the Texas Highway Department for a “special assignment,” the opus shows how Hamer, using his expert tracking skills and cop’s intuition, ended the careers of Bonnie and Clyde with extreme prejudice, to borrow the term from Apocalypse Now.

 

Fellow Rangers-retiree Maney Gault (Woody Harrelson doing his usual Woody Harrelson thing) and some local cops assist in the final showdown.

PJ Media explains that The Highwaymen “flies in the face of Hollywood liberal convention and restores the reputation of an American hero that Hollywood lore slandered as a vengeful, murdering buffoon way back in 1968.”

Added the New York Post‘s Decider column: “Highwaymen director [John Lee] Hancock has said the film was intended to redeem Frank Hamer, who was played for laughs by Denver Pyle in the 1967 film, to the dismay of the Ranger’s surviving family.”

Hamer’s widow sued Warner Brothers for defamation, over the way the Penn film ridiculed her husband, forcing the studio to enter into a 1971 out-of-court settlement with her.

 

Mission Accomplished

Cinematographer John Schwartzman does an outstanding job presenting Depression-era Americana. As the Beacon notes: “The Highwaymen is a journey into our past and a reminder of how much things have changed. Poverty—real poverty, with hunger and dirt and fall-down-shacks-for-houses—is everywhere, shanties filled with roving migrants looking to earn pennies a day springing up by the sides of roads.”

 

John Fusco’s script is expertly crafted. The spare dialogue, in part because of the Hamer character’s stoic nature, conveys an amazing amount of subtext in very few words. In fact, there are only about two or three scenes in the entire film that contain extensive exposition. Writing concisely obviously requires more creativity than the reverse.

As you would expect, Costner is solidly convincing and commanding as the world-weary Frank Hamer, including either gaining weight or wearing a fake spare tire for the part.

Should These Parents Get The DEATH PENALTY For What They Did To Their Little Son?

H/T Clash Daily.

These people deserve to die the same way their son died.

He didn’t stand a chance — born with opioids in his system, and his life only got worse. What he said to the doctor is truly heartbreaking.

Months before he was murdered, the five-year-old boy said to medical staff “‘Maybe someone hit me with a belt. Maybe mommy didn’t mean to hurt me.’”

And now… he is dead.

Social workers visited the Crystal Lake, Illinois home 27 times (18 of them unannounced). They found the house disgusting, reeking of dog urine. And when he was born, he was kept in protective custody for several months because he had opioids in his system.

And now… he is dead.

JoAnn Cunningham, 36, and 60-year-old lawyer Andrew Freund are facing murder charges.

And two social workers have been pulled from any future hands-on work pending an investigation.

But that doesn’t change one critical fact.

AJ Ferund’b body was found wrapped in plastic in a shallow grave.

Cunningham and Freund both face five counts of first-degree murder. In addition, Cunningham was charged with four counts of aggravated battery, two counts of aggravated domestic battery, and one count of failure to report a missing child death.

Freund’s charges include two counts of aggravated battery, one count of aggravated domestic battery, two counts of concealment of homicidal death, and one count of failure to report a missing child death.
Source: NBCNews

I don’t care how ‘broken’ you are as a person… what lets someone beat any child to death, let alone your own flesh and blood.

And that poor, dear trusting child…

“Maybe mommy didn’t mean to hurt me.”

May those damning words ring in their ears for all of eternity.

Richard Lugar, longtime senator and foreign policy sage, has died at age 87

H/T CBS News.

R.I.P. Senator Richard Lugar(R-IN)April 4, 1932 – April 28, 2019.

Indianapolis — Former Indiana Sen. Richard Lugar, a Republican foreign policy sage known for leading efforts to help the former Soviet states dismantle and secure much of their nuclear arsenal, but whose reputation for working with Democrats cost him his final campaign, died Sunday. He was 87.

The Lugar Center issued a statement saying Lugar died early Sunday at the Inova Fairfax Heart and Vascular Institute in Virginia from complications related to chronic inflammatory demylinating polyneuropathy, or CIPD, a rare neurological disorder.

A soft-spoken and thoughtful former Rhodes Scholar, Lugar dominated Indiana politics during his 36 years in the U.S. Senate. That popularity gave him the freedom to concentrate largely on foreign policy and national security matters — a focus highlighted by his collaboration with Democratic Sen. Sam Nunn on a program under which the U.S. paid to dismantle and secure thousands of nuclear warheads and missiles in the former Soviet states after the Cold War ended.

Lugar Introduces New Energy And Climate Change Bill
Sen. Richard Lugar seen June 9, 2010, in Washington, D.C.GETTY

“Every stockpile represents a theft opportunity for terrorists and a temptation for security personnel who might seek to profit by selling weapons on the black market,” Lugar said in 2005. “We do not want the question posed the day after an attack on an American military base.”

He served for decades on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, twice as chairman, where he helped steer arms reduction pacts for the presidential administrations of George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, supported an expansion of NATO and favored aid to Nicaragua’s Contra rebels.

Lugar tried to translate his foreign policy expertise into a 1996 presidential run, where his slogan was “nuclear security and fiscal sanity.” But his campaign for the GOP nomination went badly from the start. His kickoff rally began just hours after the 1995 bombing of the Oklahoma City federal building, and he struggled to build name recognition and support.

“He is not, nor does he try to be, a good ol’ boy,” Rex Early, a former state Republican chairman who worked on many of Lugar’s campaigns, said during the presidential run. “He is not a back-pounder and doesn’t tell funny jokes and have a beer with the boys.”

Lugar tried to counter questions about his demeanor, contending that the presidency is “serious business. The presidency is not entertainment.” But he was chafed at criticism that he was too straight, too smart, too dull.

“I don’t know what that means,” he said. “Is it better to have someone stupid? Or mediocre? Or halfway there?”

He withdrew a year into the race after failing to win a single convention delegate, but not before eerily foreshadowing the threat of terrorism that would become all too real on Sept. 11, 2001. Three of his television ads depicted mushroom clouds and warned of the growing danger of weapons of mass destruction in the hands of terrorist groups.

Lugar’s time as a Washington foreign policy expert was the highlight of a political career that began with his election to the Indianapolis school board in the early 1960s. It was there that he caught the eye of city GOP leaders, who encouraged him to run for mayor in 1967.

He served two terms at the city’s helm, leading the unification of Indianapolis and its suburban communities in Marion County, which solidified the city’s tax base and added so many Republican voters that Democrats weren’t able to win the mayor’s office again for more than 30 years. He also started efforts to revive the city’s downtown with construction of Market Square Arena, which in turn helped bring the Indiana Pacers into the NBA and spurred Indianapolis’ development as a sports city that culminated in the 2011 Super Bowl.

As mayor, he was referred to as “Richard Nixon’s favorite mayor” for backing the move of federal programs to local governments.

He first ran for Senate in 1974, but lost narrowly to Sen. Birch Bayh in the Democratic landslide at the time of the Watergate scandal. But he ran again two years later and easily unseated three-term Democratic Sen. Vance Hartke, launching a 35-year Capitol Hill career that made him Indiana’s longest-serving senator.

He built a reputation as someone willing to work across the aisle and showed he could buck his party, notably with two major disagreements with President Ronald Reagan in the 1980s.

In 1986, Reagan was inclined to accept the rigged election that would have kept Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos in office. But Lugar went to the islands as an election observer and said Reagan was misinformed. Lugar’s stand shifted U.S. support to the ultimate winner, Corazon Aquino, bringing down Marcos.

In another break with Reagan, Lugar pushed through Congress — over the president’s veto — the economic sanctions that Nelson Mandela said played a crucial role in overthrowing white minority rule in South Africa.

US Senator Richard Lugar (R) smiles while he prono
Lugar smiles during a speech Aug. 12, 1995, in Dallas.GETTY

His foreign policy work didn’t sit well with everyone. Sen. Jesse Helms ousted him as the top Republican on the foreign relations committee in 1986 as being “too internationalist.”

But at home, Lugar remained the Indiana GOP’s most popular figure, trouncing his opponents by winning at least two-thirds of the vote in four straight elections. Democrats considered him so invincible that they didn’t nominate a challenger to him for the 2006 election.

He was the top Republican on the Senate’s Foreign Affairs Committee when he first worked with Obama, taking the then-Illinois senator with him to Russia, Ukraine and Azerbaijan in 2005 to visit weapon dismantlement sites. He then co-sponsored 2007 legislation with Obama on eliminating stockpiles of shoulder-fired missiles.

Obama frequently cited his work with Lugar during the 2008 presidential campaign as evidence of his bipartisanship and foreign policy experience. Lugar endorsed John McCain but didn’t distance himself from Obama at the time, saying “I’m pleased that we had the association that Sen. Obama described.”

That changed by the time of Lugar’s 2012 re-election campaign. His tea party-backed challenger, state Treasurer Richard Mourdock, maintained that, “Lugar has clearly lost his way on issues like our raising the debt limit, wasteful earmark spending and massive bailouts of private companies at taxpayer expense.”

Lugar’s campaign ads highlighted his votes against Obama’s “bankrupting” budgets, and the senator said his relationship with Obama was “overhyped.”

But those attacks on his conservatism — combined with voter wariness about his age and long Washington tenure and questions about him not owning a home in Indiana since the late 1970s — led to Lugar’s first defeat since 1974, as Mourdock grabbed 60 percent of the GOP primary vote.

In conceding defeat, Lugar said he knew some of his positions had been considered “heretical” by some, including his opposition to earmarks and support for immigration reform.

“I believe that they were the right votes for the country, and I stand by them without regrets,” he said.

After Lugar’s defeat, Nunn, the Democratic senator with whom he worked on nuclear disarmament, suggested that many people may have misinterpreted Lugar’s positions as they accused him of being too liberal.

“Dick Lugar never compromised his principles in anything we did together, nor did I,” Nunn said at the time. “We found ways to work together because we examined the facts and let the facts have a bearing on the conclusions, and I’m afraid in today’s political world too often people start with the conclusions and then hunt facts to justify them.”

The Nunn-Lugar program led to about 7,600 Soviet nuclear warheads being deactivated and the destruction of more than 900 intercontinental ballistic missiles by the time Lugar left office, according to U.S. military figures. The program is credited with removing all nuclear weapons from the former Soviet republics of Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Belarus.

Born April 4, 1932, in Indianapolis, Lugar became an Eagle Scout and graduated at the top of his classes at both Indianapolis Shortridge High School and at Denison University in Ohio. At Denison, he played cello in the orchestra and was the student body co-president with his future wife, Charlene. They married in 1956 and had four sons.

He was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University, and in 1956 he became a Navy officer, spending time as an intelligence aide for the chief of naval operations. He moved back to Indianapolis in 1960 to help run the family’s food machinery manufacturing business.

A longtime fitness advocate, he sponsored runs in Indiana and even at age 70 completed a 3-mile competitive race in Washington in just over 28 minutes.

Reaction to Lugar’s death

Former President Barack Obama issued a statement Sunday afternoon saying “for 36 years, Richard Lugar proved that pragmatism and decency work — not only in Washington, but all over the world.”

“He exhibited the truth that common courtesy can speak across cultures,” Obama continued. “In Dick, I saw someone who wasn’t a Republican or Democrat first, but a problem-solver-an example of the impact a public servant can make by eschewing partisan divisiveness to instead focus on common ground. Today, thousands of warheads, bombers, and submarines no longer threaten us because of Dick’s work. America is safer because of Dick; the world is, too. His passing is a reminder of the constant and pressing need to expand international nonproliferation agreements. And it’s a call to remember what a public servant can be.”

Vice President Mike Pence tweeted Sunday: “As the longest serving member of Congress from Indiana, and a Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient, he leaves behind a legacy of public service that will inspire Hoosiers for generations.”

Vice President Mike Pence

@VP

Hoosiers are saddened today to learn of the passing of one of our greatest statesmen, Senator Richard Lugar. Senator Lugar’s contributions to the life of our nation are countless. My statement:

523 people are talking about this

 

Schiff: We Face ‘Dilemma’ on Impeachment That If We Don’t Impeach, It Sends Message Trump’s Conduct Isn’t Impeachable

H/T Breitbart. 

Pencil Neck Adam Schiff(Delusional-CA) got let down by the Mueller Report.

So now he is hanging his dream of getting rid of President Trump by impeachment. 

On Friday’s broadcast of HBO’s “Real Time,” House Intelligence Committee Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) said that he isn’t in favor of impeachment yet and there is a dilemma that if President Trump isn’t impeached, it “sends a message that this kind of conduct” isn’t impeachable, but if Trump is acquitted by the Senate, it would send the same message.

Schiff said, “I’m not there yet on impeachment. I may get there. … But, here’s the awful dilemma that we face, if we don’t impeach him, that sends a message that this kind of conduct, this obstruction of justice, this kind of willing use of the help of a foreign adversary, all of the lies and cover-up, that this is non-impeachable. At the same time, if we do impeach him, and he is acquitted, as he would likely be acquitted, then the message is, those are not impeachable offenses. At the end of the day, Bill, there’s only one way to deal with this problem, whether we impeach him or not, and that is to vote his ass out of office.”

Amazing Innovation or Billion Dollar Blunder? The Norden Bombsight

H/T War History OnLine.

A look at the history of the Norden Bombsight.

Left: Enola Gay bombardier Thomas Ferebee with the Norden Bombsight on Tinian after the dropping of Little Boy. Photo: Ted H. Lambert. Right: A Norden bombsight in the nose of a U.S. Air Force Douglas B-26C Invader during the Korean War.

The U.S. went “all in” on the Norden bombsight before the war, subsequently doubling down on it and its variations during the conflict.

In the interwar period of the 1920s and 30s, nations worked tirelessly to develop technologies that could better utilize aerial bombardments to destroy or at least limit a country’s ability to make war.

The U.S. was no different. It sought to create technology that would reduce the exposure of ground forces to enemy combatants. The idea was simple: destroy large formations, capital ships, and industry before they could engage friendly troops, thus reducing casualties significantly.

This was no easy feat since a typical bomber at 20,000 feet would need to drop their bomb load accurately roughly two and a half miles before they reached their target. They wuld also be past the target area by the time the bombs actually hit the target.

Norden M1 bombsight

The U.S. Navy’s prayers were answered when a group of engineers led by Carl Norden developed a bombsight that he famously claimed: “Could put a bomb in a pickle barrel from 20,000 feet.”

The U.S. Army Air Corps soon followed the Navy’s lead and the two forces combined to fund the development and production of the Norden bombsight. A sum of $1.5 billion U.S. had been spent on the concept by the end of the war.

The Norden bombsight at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California. Photo: Allan J. Cronin / CC BY-SA 3.0

To put the project’s importance and expense in perspective, consider that the U.S. spent a total of $3 billion U.S. on the Manhattan Project to produce the world’s first atomic bombs. When compared to today’s dollars, these sums were astronomical.

Of course, we know the results of the Manhattan Project clearly, but just how effective was the “cutting edge” technology of the Norden bombsight? And did it accomplish what it was tasked with achieving?

Photo of the AFCE and Bombsight shop ground crew in the 463rd Sub Depot affiliated with the USAAF 389th Bomb Group based at Hethel, Norfolk, England

Your Mission if You Choose to Accept

The U.S. went “all in” on the Norden bombsight before the war, subsequently doubling down on it and its variations during the conflict. The development of this piece of equipment and the technology involved was kept shrouded in secrecy.

Depending on the source, between 70,000 and 100,000 of the devices were produced for the U.S. military in the 30s and 40s.

The Norden bombsight was intended to solve four problems facing the commanders of the United States military.

Exterior view of the nose turret and bombardier’s station on a B-17. Photo: Mark Wagner / CC BY-SA 2.5

First, the Norden was to assist the U.S. Armed Forces in reducing an enemy’s capability for war through precision bombing. Such missions would incorporate large, fast bombers conducting daylight attacks on the enemy’s industrial capacity and transportation infrastructure.

Second, the technology was intended to enable U.S. Naval and Army air forces to accurately bomb enemy formations such as ships, bunker complexes, and even moving formations. The hope was to incapacitate such forces before they could bring their weapons to bear on American soldiers and sailors.

An early bombsight, 1910s.

Third, the device had to work in combat conditions while being operated by a pilot or bombardier who had been trained on what was essentially an analog computer.

Lastly, the bombsight’s pinpoint accuracy was packaged to the Congress and the public at large as a means to reduce or eliminate collateral damage to civilians and other unintended targets.

Every effort was made to keep the particulars of the Norden bombsight secret even from U.S. allies during development, production, and use in combat. Bombardiers gave an oath not to reveal how the device worked if captured by the enemy.

Norden bombsight crosshairs, 1944 English countryside

Performance – Big bucks, but No Bang!

Many studies and much analysis have been done on the effectiveness of the Allied bombing campaign during World War II. It has been debated whether the number of resources allocated to the campaign combined with the loss of life (both aircrews and enemy casualties) and the accuracy of the attacks justified the effort and expense expended.

The U.S. Air Force, as it became known after the war, has given probably the most favorable reviews of the campaign. An official audit that was carried out after the war concluded that in relation to the 8th Air Force, 31.8% of its bombs from 21,000 feet hit within 1,000 feet of their target.

Cologne in 1945, despite being hit dozens of times by Allied bombs, the Cologne Cathedral survived the war

This was the most optimistic assessment. Others had the hit ratio as low as 5%. Malcolm Gladwell used data during a TED Talk of a 22-mission campaign on a chemical factory in Germany during WWII that revealed only 10% of 85,000 bombs hit their target.

The raids that Gladwell speaks of occurred in 1944 so they involved experienced crews and bombardiers. Also, the target wasn’t small — it was a huge complex over 700 acres. The results: the factory was back in business in a matter of weeks.

So, considering how the Norden addressed the first problem facing it, we have to ask: was the Allied bombing campaign able to eliminate Germany’s ability to stay in the war? Quite simply, no. Most research suggests that Germany’s lack of natural resources and manpower played a much greater part.

A raid by the 8th Air Force on the Focke Wulf factory at Marienburg, Germany (1943).

To answer the second requirement is a much easier task. The Norden bombsight was totally abandoned by the U.S. Navy early on in the process in favor of dive and torpedo bombing of enemy ships. The reason: accuracy.

The U.S. Army was no different when it came to attacking enemy ground forces. It relied heavily on fighter-bombers to provide accurate fire support, and these planes weren’t fitted with Norden bombsights. Instead, the pilots used dive-bombing and strafing attacks.

Even on D-day in 1944 against static beach emplacements, the vast majority of pre-invasion bombers missed their targets completely, leaving the fortifications intact for amphibious and naval forces to deal with.

The nose turret of the B-25J “Heavenly Body”, which was on display and available for tour at the Pacific Coast Dream Machines vehicle show at the Half Moon Bay Airport in Half Moon Bay, California. Photo: BrokenSphere / CC BY-SA 2.5

Was the Norden bombsight able to function properly in typical combat conditions? Also a resounding no. Despite extensive training of over 50,000 bombardiers, the biggest problems with the Norden bombsight had little to do with the bombardiers themselves.

Most importantly, the device was designed so that the bombardier could manually line up the target in the bombsight and then let the Norden take over the calculations. However, the bombardier needed to see the target first.

Anyone familiar with Europe knows that daylight doesn’t necessarily mean sunlight. The existence of clouds is more common than not, and consequently, aircrews couldn’t always precisely locate their targets.

The ruins of Wesel in 1945, 97% of all buildings in the city were destroyed by Allied bombing

Additionally, crews were flying at higher altitudes, faster speeds, and in the face of enemy flak and fighter planes. The Norden required a constant speed and heading to be effective, but that also made the bombers susceptible to the enemy.

Finally, there was the large number of instances where the bombsight didn’t work properly even under good conditions. The main reason for this was that the mass production of the Norden meant that sub-contractors had to be used to meet the demand. This led to countless production errors.

A page from the Bombardier’s Information File (BIF) that describes the components and controls of the Norden Bombsigh

The last stipulation in the development and production was the secrecy of the project. Yet again, the project failed.

Germany already had the plans of the Norden bombsight over two years before the U.S. entered the war. A German working for Carl Norden had copied the plans and sent them to Germany where he later vacationed and explained the inner workings of the device.

Ironically, the German Luftwaffe decided that the bombsight wasn’t practical for their purposes. It was too complicated for the user, had too many small moving parts to be produced in quantity, and was seemingly no better in accuracy than their own bombsights.

In a 2009 thesis written by Michael Tremblay on the Norden bombsight, he points out a telling quote from a pilot described an in-flight emergency during the war.

Caen, Normandy after Allied bombings on July 8 and 9, 1944

“I ordered the crew to dump everything overboard. All the ammunition, machine guns, even the Norden Bombsight which Lieutenant Fitzsimmons took a great deal of pleasure tossing out.”

The willingness and pleasure of the crew in throwing out the Norden is very telling of the lack of respect the airmen had for its value, despite its super secret nature.

Lastly, the failure of the publicly lauded aim to utilize technology to avoid collateral damage against civilians is most appropriately illustrated by the bombings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. There, the bombs hit within 800 and 1500 feet respectively of their targets by utilizing the Norden bombsight.

NRA Leadership Meltdown: Cut Out the LaPierre & Ackerman McQueen Cancer

H/T AmmoLand.

A good man in Lt.Colonel Oliver North is stepping down as NRA president.

If this matter isn’t settled soon the NRA will be destroyed from within.

Opinion
Editor’s Note: As reported first on AmmoLand News the NRA leadership is deep in the process of upheaval as the current Board of Directors works to extract the member organization from a disaster of poor management and corrupt vendors.

Wayne LaPierre
Wayne LaPierre

USA – NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre could’ve prevented the Ackerman-McQueen embarrassment/scandal twenty plus years ago…. but, he probably didn’t know any better and most likely thought he was acting in the best interest of gun rights.

Somewhere along the way, he got caught up in the greed and scheming of PR agency of record Ackerman McQueen (AM).

I believe Wayne LaPierre was honestly a naive pawn in the 90’s. I’ve said that Ackerman McQueen has been the tail wagging the dog for the last 20 years many times. At some point, Wayne lost credibility with me and many others… that point was different for different people. For me, is was around 2013/14.

More importantly, at some point, Wayne must have known that he made a mistake and that the relationship he allowed was detrimental to the NRA and our cause.

At that point, and every day after that, he had to face the option of admitting his mistake and cutting off the incredibly lucrative situation that existed. Instead, he and his inner circle have doubled and tripled down over the last handful of years. They have recklessly given more and more responsibility and money to Ackerman McQueen and its NRATV, influencer programs and talking heads (Noir, Dana, Et Al…) and the disaster that was CarryGuard.

Wayne has now become the front man for a dysfunctional, dare I say “corrupt” (at least in the moral sense, if not legally), regime. They enriched themselves and their friends at great expense to the gun community and the cause of gun rights. They stopped lobbying and became professional panderers… fundraisers focused on the most potentially lucrative segment of American Gun Owners. Nothing more.

Now, that the nefarious alliance between Wayne LaPierre & Ackerman McQueen are falling apart, they are at each other’s throats, and Wayne is desperately trying to appear to be on the high ground while AM tries to manipulate the outcome to protect their cash cow.

Last night, Thursday 04/25/2019, Wayne LaPierre was given another opportunity to depart with some dignity and not force the gun community to pay for this ugly divorce that is going to play out in public.

Granted, the NRA would still be saddled with Ack-Mc pulling the strings in the background, be that through current President Oliver North (who currently benefits from a million dollar+ AM contract), or NRA employee and Ackerman McQueen’s pawn Josh Powell or whichever one of their selected board lackeys might appear to be stepping in to “fix things” in Ackerman McQueen’s favor.

Wayne LaPierre, Ackerman-McQueen and all of their high placed front people, executives, hand-picked Board Members, scripted spokespeople, and vendors need to be excised from the fight for our gun rights. They have proven to be unworthy and unable to be the representatives of American Gun Owners.

I was stopped by more NRA Members (including board members) and industry leaders than I could count today on the floor of the 2019 NRA Annual Meeting. Not one of them had a word of criticism in regard to my ever more direct and specific condemnation of the Wayne LaPierre/Ackerman McQueen situation. In fact, many of them thanked me specifically for being willing to say the things that they “can’t”… I reminded them that more and more people in our community are realizing every day that they can and must speak up… especially those of us who have been on the inside.

Join us!

Defund the NRA… divert any NRA dues or donations directly to programs you support to other National or State Pro-2A Organizations. The Second Amendment Foundation is my first suggestion. The faster the profit motive is taken away, the faster we can get past this ugly moment in NRA history. Does the NRA “need money” to fight the anti-gun movement? If so, they have plenty to find in the bloated vendor contracts, and ludicrous salaries, bonuses, and expense accounts their executives have enjoyed for far too long. This will get worse before it gets better, but it will not end well for Wayne LaPierre or those who insist on remaining loyal to their regime.

If you’re still not convinced, keep watching. As they fight with each other, more and more of the real story will come to light. Be wary of the spin in a letter “leaked” to the public today and be skeptical of that which seems to fit a convenient narrative.

Rob Pincus
Executive Vice President, 2AO.org

Wayne LaPierre’s “Leaked” Extortion Letter Complaint NRAAM 2019

 

Rosenstein Condemns Obama Administration for Not Being More Open about Russian Hacking

H/T BarbWire.

It sounds like one of the swamp monsters Rosenstein is in the CYA mode condemning Bathhouse Barry Obama’s regime.

Virtually all of America is aware that the Obama administration was fully aware of the Russian hacking of the DNC and others, months before the 2016 election.

We also know that the Obama administration was aware of the Russian attempts to influence the 2016 elections no later than early summer of 2016.

We also know that the Obama administration said nothing to the public and appears to have done little to nothing to stop the Russians, even though earlier this week, former DNCV Chair Donna Brazile said the Obama administration did everything possible to stop the Russians.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein told an audience that Obama administration failed to publicize the full story of the Russians.

Fox News – Rosenstein slams Obama administration for choosing ‘not to publicize full story’ of Russia hacking – Beleaguered Justice Department No. 2 Rod Rosenstein raised eyebrows Thursday night with a private speech in which he took a swipe at the Obama administration and slammed ex-FBI boss James Comey.

Rosenstein, the U.S. deputy attorney general who supervised the Mueller investigation, spoke out publically for the first time since the report was released, criticizing the Obama administration’s real-time reaction to Russian hacking and its decision “not publicize the full story” to the American people.

Rosenstein, who was speaking in New York at the Public Servants Dinner of the Armenian Bar Association, defended his handling of the probe and criticized former officials in the process. He also called out former FBI Director James Comey for alerting Congress about the investigation into Russian collusion at the height of the 2016 presidential campaign…

The way Rosenstein lashed out at the Obama administration is somewhat surprising.

Many, including myself, wondered about Rosenstein for the way he allowed Mueller to probe far beyond the original scope given him.

Last year, it looked like President Trump was about to fire Rosenstein because of the way he handled the Mueller investigation.

Is it possible that Rosenstein is taking this new stance in criticizing the Obama administration to help work his way back into the good graces of President Trump?

READ MORE HERE

Pentagon Prepares for Border Duty Amid Swelling Crisis

H/T Flag And Cross.

We need troops on the border ASAP to hopefully to regain control of the border.

America is calling in the cavalry for a helping hand down on the border.

As the humanitarian crisis on the border continues to intensify, a new playbook is being written by the White House.

Where there once was a trickling stream of daring border crossers, we now have a firehose.  Or perhaps a deluge would be a better metaphor.  In either case, the occasional undocumented migrant has given way to organized, well-funded caravans who are pushing our ports of entry to their extremes.

President Trump has, on several occasions, attempted to engage the democrats on the subject of border security, only to be rebuffed at every turn.  Trump has even gone so far as to declare a national emergency in order to free up funding for the endeavor.

The latest ally in the battle to secure our border is the Department of Defense, who are preparing for down-south duty as we speak.

The Pentagon is preparing to loosen rules that bar troops from interacting with migrants entering the United States, expanding the military’s involvement in President Trump’s operation along the southern border.

Senior Defense Department officials have recommended that acting defense secretary Patrick Shanahan approve a new request from the Department of Homeland Security to provide military lawyers, cooks and drivers to assist with handling a surge of migrants along the border.

The move would require authorizing waivers for about 300 troops to a long-standing policy prohibiting military personnel from coming into contact with migrants.

Just days ago, the leader of an American militia was arrested by federal authorities after his organization detained and delivered a group of undocumented migrants to the waiting arms of US Customs and Border Patrol.