Red Trousers

One photograph from last week’s event at Cheltenham stood out for me:

Now at first, my Murkin Readers could be forgiven in thinking that this is simply an example of the weird and crazy clothing tastes that abound Over There.  However, close scrutiny of the pic will show that the group does not consist of hipsters, actors, yobs and chavs [some overlap].  In fact, they seem to be rather a normal-looking bunch, other than in their choice of trousers.

And so they are.

You see, men who wear red trousers are generally of what I like to call The Polite Class:  men of substance, men of taste, men of class, and men who, secure in their position in society, do not care a fig for what other people may think of their color choices.  Here’s an article which explains the thing, in rising to the defense (defence) of red trousers and the men who wear them.  To whit:

Red trousers have become standard wear for the country gentleman—the type who drives up in a superannuated Land Rover Defender, two flatulent labradors fogging up the windows— both at home and in town. They are seen in the London SW postcodes along the District Line, on dear old things at Lord’s and at Cheltenham, in Stewards’ at Henley, at High Mass in Brompton Oratory and the debentures’ seating at Twickenham (although it’s always ‘Twickers’).

They’re worn by decent, upstanding chaps with names such as Giles or Henry, the sort whose heads are hard-wired to leap to their feet when a lady enters the room.

‘A naturalborn sporter of le pantalon rouge wears them as he does his deeply ingrained good manners—lightly.’

It is with shame that I have to report that Mr. Free Market — who fits into the above as though the category were designed for him — does not own a pair of said trousers.  Why not?  Well, there’s this, for starters:


…which has led to a backlash:

Overexposure has done for the red trouser, harrumphs the royal historian and commentator Rafe Heydel-Mankoo (six pairs), over drinks at the Carlton Club. Since both hipsters and social climbers— ‘akin to the Sebastian Flyte wannabes of the 1980s, carrying teddy bears around Oxford’—have appropriated them, he’s put his red trousers at the back of the wardrobe ‘until they become unfashionable again’.

…and the last sentence encapsulates the whole thing quite succinctly.

I can’t wear red trousers, of course — as much as I yearn to — because I am, in Mr. FM’s words, “One of those colonial chappies from America.”  Not even the Old School Tie can overcome this appalling nativism.

And I’m okay with that.  One does not go where one isn’t welcome, after all.

The website coyly referred to (and not linked) in the Country Life article is this one — whose name says it all — where I got the other two pics.

Pistol-Caliber Carbines: The Marlin

Following on from Reader Brad’s escapades with his new Ruger PC-9 carbine, a couple of comments from other Readers piqued my interest.

Specifically, I’m thinking of the Marlin Camp carbine, and still more so, the Camp 45, which was chambered in (duh) .45 ACP and took (most) 1911-type mags.  (I say “most” because mine just wouldn’t load Mec-Gar 1911 mags, even after I had a gunsmith look into it.)

The good news first:  I loved my Camp 45 dearly.  It was more fun than should be allowed without the exchange of body fluids, and the 16″ barrel made the lethargic .45 ACP into, relatively speaking, quite a speedster.  (A 230-grain bullet travelling at 1,200 fps instead of the normal 850… that’s some serious owie at the naughty end.)  And that was the problem.

The Camp 45 was fragile.  Seriously fragile.  First off, any thought of shooting +P ammo should be ignored, because even with ordinary .45 ACP loads, the recoil did horrible things to the internals over time.  The plastic buffer pad (which was about as useful as a sponge) at the back of the recoil spring was constantly cracking and then disintegrating, meaning that you had to have a ready supply of replacements on hand if you were going to shoot more than a couple hundred rounds in a session.  Someone also mentioned that the stock behind the action was prone to cracking;  in my case, a quarter-sized chip of wood came flying off and dinged me in the forehead.  (No blood, no foul;  but it did give me quite a surprise.)

At one of our Feinstein-Daley Memorial Schutzenfests, I believe it was the Layabout Sailor who completely destroyed his Camp 45 by a three-magazine burst of rapid fire — I mean, I think he used the gun as ballast after that, so complete was the destruction.  (No doubt, he’ll remind me of the details in Comments.)

So here’s the thing about the Camp 45:  as I said, it was and is a lot of fun to shoot.  But as a serious self-defense weapon?  It ain’t that.  And forget any kind of combat usage;  I’d be thanking Vulcan every time I pulled the trigger and it went bang  without the gun breaking.  Even if it looked like this (which, I gotta tell ya, looks like fun too):

Feel free to contradict me if your experience has been any different, but I know only four people who ever owned a Camp 45, and none of us own them anymore — which should tell you all you need to know.

Marlin discontinued the Camp carbines in the late 1990s, which means that only secondhand models are now available.  Caveat emptor.

Afterthought:  I have no experience with Marlin’s Camp 9, by the way, which used Beretta 92-style mags to shoot (duh again) 9mm Europellets.  Feel free to add your comments if you’ve ever owned one, or shot it seriously.

Quite Right

All sorts of trouble has come out of this:

A Danish politician claimed she was told her baby daughter was ‘not welcome’ in the parliament’s main chamber.
Far-right speaker Pia Kjaersgaard allegedly ordered Conservative politician Mette Abildgaard to remove her five-month-old baby from the room.
The mother, who is in her 30s, said she had never brought her daughter to work before, but she had to so that day because her father could not take care of her.

And Mr. Speaker is absolutely right.  When did it become acceptable for mommies to bring their brats into everywhere?  (I don’t even like seeing young children in bars, and the thought of a baby in the Parliament building… good grief.)

And the mommy in question had the absolute gall to say this:

Mrs Abildgaard also added she is entitled to a year’s maternity leave with full salary from the Parliament.

And you didn’t take it… why?  Surely the whole point of maternity leave is so that by the time it ends, the parent is capable of leaving the child in the care of someone not its parent.

This is total bullshit.  Maternity is a wonderful thing — but it’s not everything, and proud parents need to get a grip on that fact and realize that the world doesn’t revolve around them and their offspring.

Is it too early for gin?

Wut’s Da Cawst?

One of the (oh so many) bad things that came out of the Obama Years was that the word “trillion” (as in, “this will lead to a national debt of x trillion”) became normalized, in the way that after WWII, the word billion  became a substitute for million  in government-speak.  (I remember the rueful joke made in the early years of the Obama presidency, when the deficit and debt skyrocketed:  “What comes after a trillion?”  “Whatever it is, just don’t tell Obama.”)

So never mind the devaluation of the currency — an equal, and possibly worse devaluation occurred in political discourse.

Thus, when we learn that the fanciful dreams suggested policies of the radical Left will cost a hundred trillion dollars, we are somehow less alarmed because a “hundred” of something — anything — doesn’t sound like much.

And because Leftists (whether socialists, communists, Democrats, whatever) have a fairly cavalier attitude towards money (AOC:  “We’ll just create more!” — like that’s a simple exercise), this escalation of the quantity of money and the accompanying devaluation of the terminology just becomes another means whereby they can disguise the true effect (and intent) of whatever nonsense they dream up next.

This works especially well with two groups:

  • the extremely wealthy, who may be quite cognizant of the concept of vast sums of money being wasted, but who are sheltered from the consequences of political- and economic excesses by their own personal fortunes;  and
  • the very poor, for whom the purchase of a secondhand car or a modest house is about the limit of their concept of money, and who can therefore be fooled into accepting whatever large sums are bandied about both because they can’t comprehend it and because they won’t have to pay it.

It is hardly surprising, therefore, that both groups are core constituencies of the Socialist Party, here and elsewhere.

It is we poor bastards in the middle who are going to get shafted, viz.:

I don’t want you to think that I’m making a damn joke about this, because I’m not.  At some point, and soon, there’s going to be a financial and economic reckoning — and we of the middle class are going to lose everything:  houses, jobs, savings, retirement benefits, the lot.

And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to the range.


Here’s a little thought experiment for you.

Let’s assume that the Greenies get their wish, and all fossil fuel-burning cars were replaced with electric cars, by law.

Ignore all practical issues (because the Greens always do), and ponder this thought.

Right now, gasoline is taxed by the FedGov at 18.4 cents per gallon.  (Put those guns away, and concentrate on the issue at hand.)  How do you think the Gummint is going to replace that “lost” revenue (~$25 billion per annum)?

Ah, stop thinking about it, because the poxy BritGov already has.

Ministers have been told to consider a national system of road tolls to compensate for the huge loss in revenue from fuel duty when electric cars become mainstream on the back of new research.

[T]his revenue stream looks set to shrink significantly by 2040 when UK ministers plans to ban the sale of vehicles with combustion engines in a bid to persuade drivers to switch to electric cars.
A new study by Bloomberg News Energy Finance claims a road toll scheme charging up to 9p a mile should be introduced to compensate for the £14 billion lost in fuel duty revenue – a move that would cost motorists £710 a year.

(I should point out that said BritGov currently levies a fuel tax of just under 58p per liter — which is the equivalent of $2.91 (!!!!) per U.S. gallon.  It’s the Brits who should be reaching for the guns… oh wait, they don’t have any.  Sucks to be them.)

I haven’t even touched on how the states  will recover the lost revenue…

Remember Kim’s Iron Law of Taxation:  Never ever allow the government to create a new method of taxation / tax revenue stream because once created, it will never disappear.

Only When It’s Hot

To the surprise of absolutely nobody with a brain, it turns out that so-called “green” energy sources are a complete fuck-up in cold regions, e.g. Minnesoduh, as seen during the most recent polar vortex storm of 2019.

Many [Socialists], including U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and several presidential candidates, support a Green New Deal, which would phase out the use of all coal, natural gas, and oil and replace them with green energy. Proving just how wrongheaded those policies are, solar and wind power performed very poorly during the storm while coal, natural gas, and nuclear power helped keep the lights and heat on for the vast majority of people.
Just how bad was green energy’s performance during the storm? In an area stretching from Minnesota to Iowa, wind turbines went from supplying about half of the electricity one day to providing less than 3 percent the next. What caused this dramatic swing in energy output? Most turbines automatically shut down once temperatures reach -20 degrees. Even worse, not only did the turbines stop producing power, but they also consumed power for heat to avoid damage. Solar energy production also collapsed. Due to snow cover, Xcel Energy’s solar panels only produced eight to ten percent of their potential output. [emphasis added]

Here’s my suggestion.  Limit all this Green energy production to Africa, where (unlike Oklahoma), the sun shines every single day and the wind, when it does blow, blows mostly in a hot climate.  Of course, with the African continent’s legendary record of equipment maintenance and security (Cliff Notes:  never happens), the wind turbines will soon fall over and the solar panels will be stolen.

Or we could just consign all this Green bullshit (and its proponents like AOC and Al Gore) to the Dumpster Of Historical Failures, and get back to dealing with reality instead of wasting our time on unicorn ranching.