Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Yeah, Whatever


From the Department Of Random Idiocy That Keeps Getting Yakked About File:

Balloonatics and Ballunacy

1) This was a Clown Show, and a distraction. No more, no less.

2) There's nothing China could do in this regard that rises beyond the level of Official Mischief, and gets nowhere near Strategic Problem.

3) This was evidently going on for months to years. So why make it A Thing now?

4) There are no coincidences in geopolitics. Not for 100 years, or more.

5) The size of balloon needed to do anything strategic, even an EMP, would probably dwarf the LZ Hindenburg, be visible to the naked eye at 1000 miles, and detected by NORAD two days out from US airspace. And there was nothing you could imagine that could have been on that balloon that couldn't have been driven into any spot in the US by rental truck up from Mexico, or inland from any seaport, in plain sight. And probably already has been, years and years ago. Ponder that cheery thought for a couple of seconds, and then STFU about any balloon hyperventilations.

6) If you thought we haven't been overflying Russia, China, and any other damned spot on the planet we wished to, 24/7/365/forever since about 1958, I can't help your general ignorance. We didn't just "retire" the SR-71s in the 1990s without having something you haven't been briefed on that's orders of magnitude better to replace it. Like Mach 6 better. FFS, the word on that has been out in open sources for over thirty years. Stand up and catch a cluebat in the forehead. Then imagine what we've developed and deployed in the thirty years since then.

7) Stop looking at the magician's hand doing the waving, and go look at what his other hand is doing.

8) Anybody see anything about the border invasion? Secret documents in everyone's garage? 57 other more pressing problems? Beuller? Ferris Beuller...?? Anyone...??? Even confirmed Leftard Aaron Sorkin wrote about this legerdemain time and again in Taking Out The Trash on The West Wing, twenty years ago. You're meant to be watching the clowns get out of the Volkswagen, so you don't notice the guys pushing the lion cages into the center ring. Every. Single. Time.

Tanks A Lot

1) Vlad and his ass-kissing minions are high-stressing because we're sending (not even a battalion's worth of) modern tanks to Ukraine. Someday. Months from now. Maybe.

2) And so are Britistan, and Germany.

3) This is because Ukraine is running out of captured Russian tanks to strip for parts to keep their own Russian tanks running. Both sides have no shortage of second- and third-rate Russian tanks that have gone all explodey, like they do in every war they've been used, and which aren't very useful after they're charred and rusted.

4) Russia is refurbing, over years, a few hundred 60-70-year-old rusted museum pieces, because they have no other source for new tanks, including themselves. Ukraine, under the heading "No Shit, Sherlock!" can't buy more Russian tanks, or Russian tank parts, or Russian tank ammo, from Russia at the moment. Who Knew? Film at 11.

5) Vlad's hyperventilating over Ukraine getting Western first-line tanks, because he's winning so hard! getting his own armies asses kicked halfway back to the pre-war borders, with a good chance of losing his illegal occupation of Crimea since 2014, and all the rest of stolen Ukrainian territory, in the bargain.

6) Cooler heads recognize that the number of tanks being sent isn't enough to make a decisive difference in the war, and that modern tanks have an even fatter logistical tail than the clunky Russian pieces-of-shit do.

7) By definition, it also isn't enough tanks to seriously stress our stocks of same. You can't have it both ways, so kindly STFU about how this is weakening our own forces. We've handed this shit out all over the Persian Gulf for decades, and we're running half the Army we had at the height of the Cold War, so put the bong pipe down, and quit licking LSD sugar cubes. This is Military Industrial Grade war profiteering, plain and simple. Which has gone on uninterrupted since 1941. It's a little late to get hyper-jacked up about it now, just because some people are Baby Ducks, and only noticed five seconds ago. Anybody sharting their pants over this now isn't impressing anyone else. Daddy Warbucks always comes out ahead, no matter who wins or loses the shooting war.

8) Meanwhile, we're in Month Three of "Any Day Now, Russia's Gonna Do...Something, Besides Bleed Out". We're in Month Seven of "Russia's Just Sucking Ukraine In...", and we're also about to hit the One Year Anniversary of "Two Weeks To Flatten Kiev". No one's seen the Russian Air Farce (except smoking holes in the Ukrainian countryside) since last March, they haven't figured out how to run a combined arms battle successfully in a year of trying, and they're down 20% of their actual combat strength in that time, losing three times more men in less than a year than the US lost in ten years of Vietnam War, and ten-plus years in Irag and Afghanistan, all combined.

9) Just like in football, if you want to know who's winning, answer the question "Which way is the line of scrimmage moving?" You'll have your answer. Over time, it's predictive of outcomes. Option One, Russia finally catches a clue, and quits. Option Two, they do to Ukraine what Rome did to Carthage. Neither of those options is visible anywhere on the horizon at present. Option Three, this becomes the Iran-Iraq War, and both sides settle in for fits of lethargy, punctuated by days of carnage, until one or both sides get tired of it. Russia is fighting for Vlad's territorial ambitions; Ukraine is fighting for existence. You decide which motivation has longer legs.


Plague Monk said...

For the funniest thing I've seen recently outside of a very poorly written book on the late Roman Republic, check out the comic book magnate's screed on the US launching earthquake weapons: https://voxday.net/2023/02/07/an-unnatural-disaster/ Never having used funky mushrooms, I can't imagine what his thought processes are, and I don't want to find out.
I've also been reading the various guesstimates on what the balloon's capacity is with some interest, since I'm writing a hard SF novel based on JP Powell's Balloons to Space concept and using hard numbers for lift, etc. The numbers are all over the chart, which suggests that only Xi and his happy crew know for sure. I do wish that their little Jules Verne device had been brought down in the US so we could see what version of Tinker Toys the Chinese used to construct it.

Anonymous said...

A T-62M with updated optics is more suited for this war then a M1A2 SEP V2. There is not shortage of 115mm HE rounds to burn through while the USA has limited amounts of 120mm HE, but loads of M829A2/3/4 and MPAT which will be near zero use unless the Russians do a mad tank rush. Russians are many things but fools isn’t one of them. Western tanks were designed for a tank dual in Poland and Germany not a slow grinding arty war.

Aesop said...

Uh huh.
So Putin's shitting himself over them because...why?
Your ball.

Termite said...

Back in 1981 or 82, newsman Paul Harvey mentioned on his early morning pre-report that Lockheed had flown an airplane at Mach 6, details to be given at his regular noon program.

He didn't give details at noon, and he never mentioned it again, IIRC.

Keep in mind that the Habu is 1960s technology, and Kelley Johnson lived until Dec 1990.

Rollory said...

It blows my mind that "tank experts" (internet credentials only, of course) are going around claiming that the T-72 is better than the M1.

It's like nobody ran the experiment on a scale of thousands in a big sandy test zone.

"Russians are many things but fools isn’t one of them. "

The track record for the past year requires you to provide some - any - evidence to support your claim. Because right now, most available evidence indicates that foolery is a very big part of all things Russian.

As for Mr. Comix - I can't figure out if he has really is desperately lying to himself as much as it appears, or if he just has that much contempt for his regular audience to expect they'll swallow anything.

Ryan said...

I don't think the Russian complaints about German tanks are genuine (no actual reason to care). It's about domestic propaganda. The Kremlin wants the public thinking this is Great Patriotic War round two.

pyrrhus said...

By the time these obsolete tanks are delivered in 2024, the current Ukraine will not exist...Hopefully, the 14 year olds they have been press ganging into their army will surrender rather than getting themselves killed for nothing...

John Wilder said...

Next up, the T-34/85.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget the "Open Skies" program where we, the Russians, and several other countries openly fly recon aircraft over each others countries many times a year, a couple dozen each IIRC...
As far as tanks go, the published US goal is to have about 3,000 available for use, upgraded and running.
The US built almost 10,000 M1 variants during the 80's and 90's and has given or sold a couple hundred to other countries since... Do the math and the US has LOTS of spare tanks around!

Hammers Thor said...

Regarding the payload capability, my understanding is that the balloon was about 200 feet tall. Evidently the payload it's capable of carrying is a couple thousand pounds, which could easily carry a medium-yield EMP weapon upwards of 10 megatons, or of course a shitload of listening equipment, or a significant drone swarm. Definitely not Hindenburg level, which was about half a million pounds, but sufficient to mess us up pretty badly.

Likely a big risk? Who knows. But the carrying capacity is most definitely there. We probably would be well-advised to prevent any more of these to approach the United States, much less cross the center of the country.

Joe in PNG said...

Maybe the 14 year olds in Ukraine would rather die fighting than starve to death in a Russian slave labor camp? Just sayin'.

Dan said...

A package capable of producing a large EMP would weigh less than 200#. Easily carried by most balloons of this type. A payload containing a virus or other biological would weigh even less. Both are easily within Beijing's technical abilities. This balloon was part of an ongoing series of missions with two main agendas....one was surveillance and photography the other was to see how the Fed Gov would react. This one somehow became public knowledge exposing the perfidy and incompetence of those in charge. Beijing is waging a war on the US and most people are not aware of this with a the media and Fed Gov refusing to state the obvious.

Stealth Spaniel said...

I saw part of Pedo Joe's SOTU speech. He didn't mention China, but he threw Obama/Sotero under the bus when it came to healthcare. (Um......stop me if you've heard this....... ) Evidently ObamaCare isn't all it is cracked up to be so we need to spend millions, and fine corporations billions, so that people don't go broke trying to get cancer care. Pedo Joe had the Fetterman the Fool on full display and Kneepads was smirking. The canned applause was deafening. Meanwhile, up in my beautiful balloon, I kept hoping that a full on flame thrower would go off.

Bob said...

The SR-71/A-12 program was a product of a program that began in the late 1950s. About 1958 I think but I’m to lazy to go dig through my library of books on the subject. Hypersonic aircraft programs started with the X-15 in the very early 1960s and went into the darkest reaches of Spooklandia in the early 1970s. One of those was project Isinglass(sic?). The men that developed that stuff were insanely talented to take the technology as far as they did with mostly slide rules and later early desktop digital calculators. The mathematics and physics calculations to model airflow and hypersonic combustion are just as hard if not harder than what the physicists had to tackle to model the explosive and later radiation compression waves that create fission and later fusion explosions.

Anonymous said...

Tell us more about how alec baldwin is innocent...?

Joe said...

Before you poop yourself laughing to hard you might want to read a copy of the then US Secretary of Defense Cohen (I think) gave at a WMD summit about 20 years ago at the University of Georgia. He flatly stated that weather and geotectonic WMDs are a real thing and other countries have them and others are developing them. I watched a video of it once. He wasn’t drunk. That’s a weird thing to say if it was the usual “we must not allow to create a gap to squeeze more money outa Congress. Is it real? I dunno. That is what a very high ranking guy said though.

Aesop said...

@Anon 8:48P,

This blog moves pretty fast. Try and keep up:

That was online 4 hours before you posted. ;P
And Part II is already in the hopper for tomorrow.
The NM prosecutor, like Amber Heard, just shit the bed.
She may not know it yet, but she just may have signed her professional death warrant, and retired from her career, other than perhaps ambulance chasing and immigration law for illegals.

Geotectonic WMDs were written about by Martin Caidin 50 years ago.

I know that, because I read it when it came out.

Problem is, gigaton bombs tend to leave a wee radioactive signature.
Which triggers a few hundred to a few thousand instant sunrises in reply, and pretty much makes South America the dominant continent on the planet for a couple of centuries.

Tucanae Services said...


Strike point 4 if you please. The second largest tank factory of the former Russian system is located in Ukraine. Khrakiv in fact, which is why the Ukes considered that strategic and why the Russians needed to take the city. A smidgen of data here -- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malyshev_Factory

Aesop said...

Kharkiv in general has been blown to shit by both sides, so has the local power grid, and there's no likelihood of getting any local tank plant up and running anytime soon, and no guarantee it could produce the necessary parts ever, if it ever could, let alone in a timely manner during a war.
Point 4 stands, on the merits.

JimR said...

Cargo capacity of the Hindenberg was something around 50 tons.

Pretty sure that far exceeds any likely EMP device, heck, that's enough to have carried Tsar Bomba.

Aesop said...

To what altitude, Jim?

And all that metal superstructure shows up how far away on radar?