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Lady Lex and Planes in Remarkable Shape after 76 Years at the Cold, Dark Bottom of the Coral Sea March 6, 2018

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, Flightline Friday, foolishness, fun, history, non squitur, silliness, Society.
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Billionaire Paul Allen, one of the founders of Microsoft, has spent some of his remarkable fortune on deep sea expeditions, finding old wrecks of historical value. Last year his crew found the USS Indianapolis, sunk after delivering the atomic bomb components to Tinian with most of her crew killed by sharks waiting for rescue.  He has also found the massive IJN battleship Musashi.

Just a few days ago, his research team found USS Lexington, CV-2, sunk during the Battle of Coral Sea by the US after she suffered catastrophic explosions from gasoline leaks after being hit by Japanese bombs.  The ship, and especially the aircraft, were in remarkably good shape.  Even the squadron emblems from “Fighting Three” (VF-3) were still plain as day, as were the dark grey/light grey finish, national markings (including the quickly dropped “meatball” in the star that it was feared would be confused with a similar meatball used on Japanese planes as their rising sun motif), kill markings, etc.  Structurally the planes don’t look as bad as one might think after three quarters of a century in the muck and gloom of the deep, deep ocean. In fact they look almost good enough to try to raise and refurbish for museum display.  What a historical coup that would be.

Lexington was part of the “first team” of pre-war, often career sailors and airmen who first held the line, and then very quickly turned the tables on the Japanese before massive American production of men and material made the War in the Pacific all but a foregone conclusion.

Totally non sequitur to this blog but ho boy I hope they post a lot more video and pics of this:

Wrecked Douglas TBD Devastator of Torpedo Three (VT-3)

That Felix the Cat symbol is famous and dates back to the 1920s in naval aviation.  It is still used today by VFA-31 “Tomcatters”


Townes Van Zandt Because I Feel Like It March 1, 2018

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, family, General Catholic, non squitur.
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It’s just a Townes kind of day.  Eminently charming, humorous, and hugely talented, a Texan in just about every sense, like many artists, he fell into hard living and died as a pretty miserable alcoholic.  In his later years he was just a shadow of his former self, but for a while in the early 70s he was as good as they came. Interestingly, he released an album in 1973 entitled The Late Great Townes Van Zandt, and it was right after that that he fell into wholesale active addiction.

This first one speaks eloquently of my mood today, not so much the hook, but the body of the lyrics:

This one is better known, and just kind of gives a sense of who Townes was at his height:

So I Had to Break My Mom’s Heart Today…….. March 1, 2018

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, Bible, Domestic Church, family, General Catholic, Holy suffering, Interior Life, martyrdom, mortification, sadness, Tradition.
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…….and hurt my dad, as well.  I probably also permanently terminated any chance of having a relationship with my sister, which relation has already been horribly strained due largely to my traditional Catholic Faith (and other matters) over the past 7-8 years.

My family, and my wife’s family, are polar opposites. My wife’s family is Catholic, mine is protestant.  My wife has 60 nieces and nephews, I have one niece.  That niece is to be married in April to a fallen away Catholic from Mexico.  They are being married outside the Church. I did not ask, but I was told he was fallen away.  Well from then on we simply could not attend the wedding, and I dreaded having to break the news, because family is probably the most important thing in this world to my mom especially, and this would break her heart.  But I spoke with every priest at the parish and they were unanimous – no, I cannot attend a religious wedding/simulation of the Sacrament of Matrimony involving a Catholic.

There is a dim hope he was not actually baptized, but it’s exceedingly unlikely.

So we cannot attend.  And my family does not understand.  I barely understand, but I know I just can’t do it. And because family means so much to my mom, and because, aside from my wife and I’s  7 kids, the family is so small, everything tends to get magnified to the Nth degree. But the issue from a doctrinal standpoint is totally clear – I cannot support a Catholic in committing an act of grave sin against the Faith.  I certainly could not confuse and scandalize my children by involving them, and their presence is practically the whole point to my mom.

So I really hurt my parent’s feelings, which I absolutely did not want to do, and they cannot comprehend why.  That’s the reason I’m sharing this here, because they’re right, 99.5% of Catholics in the US today would go ahead and go to the outdoor “wedding” ceremony.  Who am I to say I am so right?  How can I hold myself up as such a prideful elitist looking down on other Catholics and all other Christians? Heck Francis himself would probably castigate me as a vicious sinner for failing to go, calling me to make human hearts happy as the highest end.  And yet the Truth remains………

Do not think that I came to send peace upon earth: I came not to send peace, but the sword. For I came to set a man at strife against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

And a man’s enemies shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me, is not worthy of me; and he that loveth son or daughter more than me, is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not up his cross, and followeth me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life, shall lose it: and he that shall lose his life for me, shall find it.

So do not let it be said that my faith in Jesus Christ, flawed and as imperfect as it is, has not cost me anything.  It has cost me dear, and cost others as well, people whom I love who do not share this faith of mine and who I have to hurt because of my faith. But this is one of the moments that, to me, defines whether one really believes or not.  Am I willing to stand with Christ, to choose Christ over even mother or father or sister or niece, all of whom are so very dear to me?  I pray I am.  I can tell you, there were several times during the unfortunate scene today when I wanted to cave in, and one time very nearly did. But in the end, I could not.

I am very sorry for that, in fact it’s been a brutal experience, but I can do no other than what I feel in conscience I must.  I write this here, because I felt that if anyone would understand, you would.

May God have mercy on us all for our human failings.  And may He in His infinite benevolence bring about a miracle of conversion for all my family so that we may all be united fully in Faith and charity.



Please Pray for the Repose of the Soul of Jeff Dunnam February 7, 2018

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, blogfoolery, firearms, Four Last Things, sadness, suicide.
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Jeff Dunnam was a coworker of mine for the past 2 years at Commscope.  The first 7-8 months I didn’t get to know him as he was on leave recovering from cancer.  Then he went out again for cancer treatment over the past 2 months or so.  But in between, I got to know Jeff quite well.  Jeff was not Catholic but was a believing Christian. He was in many respects a good guy.  We had many conversations when he drug me out to have a smoke in the afternoon heat.  He grew up in Collin County, like me, and we used to talk about the sounds and smells of summer – the Bois D’Arc trees and rotting horseapples, the smell of ragweed 10 feet tall, the katydids and locusts buzzing all day, the things we’d get up to as kids, before Collin County got built up and paved over.  I enjoyed the time I spent with him.

Even though he had been suffering from cancer, he died suddenly and unexpectedly this past Saturday Feb 3.  Amazingly, another coworker of mine ran into Jeff buying a handgun earlier that same day, and reported he looked agitated and distracted but physically well.

Obviously there is much cause for prayer.  The visitation/memorial is tonight, the funeral and burial tomorrow at 2pm.  Both are in Allen, near Jeff’s hometown of McKinney.  Location at the link.  Yes these are of course protestant services.

REQUIEM aeternam dona ei, Domine, et lux perpetua luceat ei. Requiescat in pace. Amen Fidelium animae, per misericordiam Dei, requiescant in pace. Amen.


Don’t Have a Freak Out – Russian, Chinese Anti-Satellite Technology Nothing New January 31, 2018

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, Flightline Friday, history, It's all about the $$$, non squitur, silliness, Society, technology.
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This article from Hot Air is remarkably ignorant of history.  It does not mention, for instance, Program 437, which ran from 1962 until 1975, which involved launching a Thor missile from Johnson Atoll in the Pacific to down low earth orbit satellites and/or fractional orbit bombardment systems (FOBS) – a kind of nuclear warhead designed to behave like a satellite and thus attack by stealth, possibly from a surprising direction – like from the south.  This was an active US anti-satellite (ASAT) capability for over a decade.

And even Program 437 was preceded by another American ASAT system, Program 505, which used a Nike Zeus anti-ballistic missile missile to also target low earth orbit satellites and FOBS.  505 was phased out because Thor could reach much higher altitudes than Zeus, up to 800 miles above earth – really out of LEO territory and into medium orbits.  Both were armed with nuclear warheads to make sure they killed what they targeted, though they were accurate enough (at least Zeus was) to get skin-to-skin hits even way back in the very early 60s.  Satellites and ICBM reentry vehicles behave in extremely similar ways, if you have a capability against one, you have a capability against the other.  And right now, the US missile defense system is neither the world’s most advanced nor it’s most comprehensive.  Apparently, many other nations have concluded that shooting down targets on entirely predictable ballistic paths is not impossible.  Because it’s not, and we’ve been doing it for nearly 60 years, though the current Ground Based Mid-Course Defense system is kind of a kludge and has been starved of vital infrastructure for years (like enough radars to discriminate targets).

The thing is, all of our major world adversaries have had a similar capability for decades.  Pretty much, if you have the ability to orbit a satellite, you have the ability to shoot them down, at least the ones in LEO. Simply calculate the orbit of the target satellite, and launch your own to coincide with at some determined time, and blammo, no more satellite. The Soviets had a massive ASAT program from the 60s on, and deployed a number of ASAT systems, up to an including a 1 megawatt laser battle station prototype, which, thank God, failed to achieve orbit when it’s booster turned the wrong direction and fired it back into the atmosphere (that was in 1987, when the same Soviets were screaming to all the world, and had eager acolytes in the Western press doing same, that orbital laser battle stations were an impossibility.  They were actually way ahead of us at the time, and in some ways, still are).

Anyhoo, some statist media were trying to work up a panic today, eagerly parroting what their patrons in the Deep State wanted them to say, proclaiming that Oh My God, the bad guys are threatening us again!  It’s all much ado about nothing (or very little, and very old, news), but it does point up that, indeed, at present, the US has no viable, operational ASAT system, not because we don’t have the ability, or can’t afford it, but by deliberate act of policy. Any number of systems have been proposed, and a good number have reached the hardware stage, but demonrats in Congress (or the executive branch) have always managed to scuttle them, since we signed a stupid treaty in 1967 that pretends to ban warfare in outer space.*  Good luck with that:

China and Russia are developing anti-satellite missiles and other weapons and will soon be capable of damaging or destroying all U.S. satellites in low-earth orbit, according to the Pentagon’s Joint Staff.

The Joint Staff intelligence directorate, known as J-2, issued the warning in a recent report on the growing threat of anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons from those states, according to officials familiar with the assessment.

The report concludes that “China and Russia will be capable of severely disrupting or destroying U.S. satellites in low-earth orbit” in the next several years, said the officials.

The capability to attack low-earth orbit satellites could be in place by 2020, the officials said.

Notice the subtle manipulation – there is a big threat, but it’s not quite real, yet.  We’re safe for now.  But you better pour billions into our pet project, or we’ll be doomed, doomed!

There actually is a real threat out there, but I think it has much more to do with how the US defense establishment has allowed its operations to evolve into this desire for an ultimate control, God’s eye view of the battlespace, requiring massive recon and even more massive data transfer capabilities.  Because the “gods” don’t want to be anywhere near an actual battlefield, which tend to be in hot, nasty, dusty, and sticky places.  They want to sit in their air conditioned cocoon in DC and call all the shots.  The only, or easiest, way to get worldwide recon and transmission of data is via satellite.  Thus, the US military is now incredibly, incredibly dependent on constant and massive satellite presence, a very very delicate system and one with a thousand and one dire vulnerabilities and single points of failure. Thus the screaming about the threat.  25 years ago, satellites were very nice to have an in some limited ways even vital, but the Gulf War could have been fought with a serious reduction in our satellite capabilities without a great deal of impact at the operational level.  Nowadays, literally everything runs via satellite, from the Predator footage that allows Obama to sit in the Oval Office and watch a terrorist get Hellfired in Yemen, to all the JDAMs/JSOWs/JASSMs and other “joint” bombs and missiles that now make up the overwhelming majority of the ordinance dropped by tactical aircraft, which, similarly, navigate via satellite.  There is still some sanity, many of these bombs and certainly the aircraft have embedded INS and other systems to back up and replace the GPS if need be, but a) those are just that, back ups, and not used much anymore, and b) the entire concept of operations, training, budgets, etc., are focused around constant availability of very expensive, very few, and very vulnerable satellites.  This actually is a very major concern for the US, because satellites are extremely difficult to harden, and they are very easy to find (there are ways around this, satellites do contain maneuvering fuel, but not very much, and a few orbit changes to avoid a threat will use that up very quickly.  Plus, moving them around causes them to not be where you need them to be when you need them – at least some of the less numerous kinds. Probably most of you would be shocked to know how FEW recon “spy” satellites the US has in orbit – even adding in the radar and other non-visual types, it isn’t even 10, and may be as few as 4 or 5).

Thus, ZUMA, which some of you may have heard of, was probably not actually a failed mission, but is almost certainly a prototype (or not so prototype) stealth satellite design.  That’s one way to avoid being targeted – many amateur astronomers, radio hobbyists, etc, are able to track all publicly acknowledged satellites by their transmissions (even if they cannot decode them), literally see them in orbit, etc.  It is known there have been some stealth satellites that were not visible to the ground and used transmission technologies that most ordinary enthusiasts could not ID and track.  Several of these have been orbited over the years.  ZUMA appears to be another one, but unusually large and with an unusual cover story.

*- While the Us has no acknowledged, purpose-built ASAT system at present, as recently as 10 years ago, the US very publicly shot down a satellite in LEO using an ABM missile (a Navy Standard 3 missile, our best ICBM defense weapon at this point).  If a nation has an operational ABM system, it most certainly has at least some measure of an ASAT capability. I’m sure Obama scratched any further development of that capability, even at the classified level, but perhaps Trump will turn it back on.

In the past, I’d have said that was a good thing.  Not so sure anymore.

Sorry I do have a lot of good Catholic stuff to get to but had little time today.  I’m really running late now, have a blessed evening.

Sorry for the atrocious pic – who would take it from between some fuzzy covers, and why? But it’s the only one that shows what we could have had, and almost had – a layered missile defense system covering almost the entire US with nearly 1000 interceptors (more could have been added later) with numerous, very capable and very hardened, targeting radars. Not sure why New Orleans and El Paso were left uncovered – Miami, too, apparently. This system wasn’t really good against SLBMs but with additional radars and interceptor sites, easily could have been. Yes it was expensive but at present we have almost no defense, and for some of the country, none at all, against a ballistic missile attack, nuclear or otherwise.
These are coverage areas of the proposed – and somewhat built – Sentinel ABM system, which later was called Safeguard under Nixon, and then cancelled by the commie Congress of the mid-70s that came in the national temper tantrum in the wake of Watergate, which was an absolute nothing burger compared to what the corrupt federal government is up to today, and has been since at least Jan 20 2009, when Obama turned it into the paramilitary enforcement branch of the demonrat party.


Yes, I am still alive…….. January 9, 2018

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, blogfoolery.
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…….but I have been through the ringer with regard to health problems and blogging may remain light for some time to come.

I was hospitalized on Dec 16-17 for an episode of atrial fibrillation.  This is one heart arrhythmia I am dealing with.  There are some others, too.  But I am on some medications intended to control it, but one of the things they do is artificially depress my heart rate, which leaves me without as much energy or stamina as I used to have.  Or would like to have.

At any rate, there have been all kinds of twists and turns in that tale of woe I shan’t bother you with.  I was off work for about 3 weeks, both due to these health problems and as part of a planned vacation, which turned into a sort of recuperation period.  I am back at work this week and hope to blog some.

I will put up one other post today, God willing, of more substantive content, but I wanted at the least to communicate to the good readers of this blog the cause of my absence.

Many of you have been most generous with your prayers and expressions of concern, and I wish to express my gratitude for these acts of charity.  Please continue praying for me, this arrhythmia situation is not fully resolved, yet, though I haven’t had a major episode since the one in December, Deo Gratias.


Good Sermon on Charity and Scandal…… December 6, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, disaster, sadness, scandals, Society.
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…….with a particular focus on the need for modest dress, especially among women.

Yes, men must dress modestly, too, but for two key reasons, the issue of modesty is dress has always had a particular urgency for women more than men.  First, while men may occasionally dress immodestly, both culturally and from a standpoint of human biology, it is much more common for women to do so.  They have more to show off, as it were.  Secondly, men are much, much more influenced by what they see, in the sense of temptation against the 6th and 9th Commandments, than women.  Men are extremely motivated by visual stimuli, especially of a sexual nature.  Thus, as father notes, men are normally much more affected by immodest dress, than women.

This all has to do with charity towards our neighbor.  A young lady may want to flaunt what she’s got, but whose interests is she serving if she insists on doing so?  Is anyone being hurt? She may think not, but the priest indicates that there is great potential for harm.

The sermon also touches much more generally on what constitutes charity and scandal, and fleshes out those concepts for us.

It’s pretty brief, at about 10 minutes, and I believe a helpful and edifying reminder (for many of us – if it’s new to you, all the better).

I can’t remember when Father gave this sermon, I must have heard it.  I’m thinking it was a few years back.

Speaking of scandal, how about this from Paul Joseph Watson:

No, he defines what it means to be a future suicide*.  First of all, that kid’s got a big uphill battle just from the standpoint of nature.  Secondly, little boy, and the twisted mother/parental unit foisting this sickness upon you, you are being used, and will be broken and consumed, as nothing more than a tool to the radical leftists who simply want yet another means to inflict a horrible wound on the Western Civilization they loathe.  I am so very sorry for the pain you so obviously feel.  It breaks my heart to see such a young boy in so much pain and confusion.  It will only get worse unless you get healing through the only Source that can truly heal us, our Eucharistic Lord Jesus Christ.

In a totally unheard of turn of events, this boy is the product of a never-married single mom who resides in NYC, who just happens to have numerous sodomite male friends.

Only late stage societies near the point of collapse have ever, historically, had large subcultures of transgenders.  Societal acceptance of such has typically been one of the final signs of impending collapse.  Crazy right wingers didn’t say that – leftist and self-identified “trans” Camille Paglia did.

Seeing little boys (it’s almost always little boys, isn’t it?) so full of self-loathing just kills me. It makes me want to tear my teeth out, something.  I can’t stand it.  I can’t imagine how much humiliation that little boy feels deep down inside. And lest some think this is just a short term “fling,” or that he came up with this himself, there are dozens of videos of him on Youtube showing how mom has both coached and encouraged his transgenderism, and undermined his masculinity.  Thus………

*-those afflicted with the perversion of “transgenderism” are orders of magnitude more likely to commit suicide than the general population. Indeed, by some measures, nearly 1/4 of self-identified “trans” will successfully kill themselves.  Since this boy is being so heinously exposed, commercialized, and used at such a young age, the trauma he is experiencing is even greater than the vast majority of other trans-types. Thus, his likelihood for severe emotional/mental damage and desire to take the pain away by any means is almost certain to be much greater even that “regular” trans.  Of course, all things are possible with Grace, and I pray for his conversion from this lifestyle plainly and repeatedly condemned by St. Paul.



2nd Annual Virgin of Guadalupe Pilgrimage Tues Dec 12 @ 9a December 1, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, Ecumenism, fun, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Our Lady, priests, sanctity, Society, Spiritual Warfare, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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My wife and kids were in the first one last year.  I’m sure they’ll be there again for this 3 mile pilgrimage across Irving to the campus of the University of Dallas:

Do call Julie if you can help with shuttle driving.  Bring your Marian flags, your banners, make this a work of witness!  i cannot attend, I will be at work and am using my last unused vacation day for the Immaculate Conception.

I’ve been intending to return this blog’s focus to the Dallas Diocese, more as it was in the beginning as I head toward the 8th anniversary of these little rants of mine, so here is another list of the many upcoming events this December at Mater Dei FSSP parish:

Since the Feast of the Immaculate Conception falls on a Friday and is a 1st Class Feast, eating meat is allowed, yes?


A Little Fun Video – I Like Guns November 15, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, firearms, fun, non squitur, silliness, Society.
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Man what a lucky guy.  I’ve never heard of this Steve Lee before, but he got access to a mighty collection of uncommon firearms to have a hand at.  Man I would LOVE to have an RPG-7 with real rounds.  I am not sure how one would even obtain the rounds, given that they are explosives.  I do know some guys who have had training RPGs that could not fire, but that’s no fun.  Of course, the machine guns would also be a blast.  And contra those who say automatic weapons have no usefulness, they absolutely do, suppressing fire can be hugely important and they are excellent at just that.  They are also excellent in a static defense role against large numbers and in scaring the jeebers out of the Feds when they come to take your guns away.  Heh.

Anyway, the song is fun and lighthearted and I found it quite entertaining.  Hopefully you will, as well.


Flightline err Tuesday: Showing the Flag in the Sea of Japan November 14, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, Flightline Friday, foolishness, fun, non squitur, silliness, Society, technology.
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Every year, the RIMPAC exercise will feature some impressive shows of force, with as many as three US carriers, many US and allied escorts, and an occasional allied carrier or similar “capital” ship.

But RIMPAC is generally staged around Guam.  Last week, however, the following was recorded in the western Sea of Japan or East China Sea off the coast of North Korea:

That is USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76), USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71), and USS Nimitz (CVN-68), along with what I believe is the Japanese JMSDF Izumo helicopter carrier.  There are a dozen odd escorts.

But the frankly cool part is looking down on the flyover by B-1Bs and Super Hornets.  That’s not a sight one sees everyday, a top-down aerial view of not only a large naval formation but also manned bombers and fighters.

Now the view from the carriers:

View from inside the Nimitz pilot house during the obvious PR event:

Amazingly, the USN managed not to have a collision in spite of all these ships being in such close proximity.  Top. Men.

Not sure how wise such a demonstration is in such close proximity to hostile shores.  That’s about $70 billion worth of hardware.

Since the USN only has 9 carriers, and typically two are in either refit (like USS George Washington right now, in refit for 2 years) or otherwise unavailable for every one deployed carrier, that’s basically the entire US carrier force right there.  I think there is one more in the Persian Gulf right now (Vinson?).  It is possible at times to take a force of 9 and have 5 deployed, but that’s about it, and only some of the time.  More than likely, only 3 are available on a day to day basis.

So the Brits with two Queen Elizabeth class ships basically have zero carriers, at least as a sort of worst case your enemy picks the day to start the war kind of scenario.

Anyhoo.   Love to see those Bones flying over the carriers, but the operational art the old SAC had……….I’m not sure it exists anymore: