Richard Candelaria's last dogfight

The Americans and the Germans had totally different styles as to how they manged the careers of their fighter pilots. The Americans would send their fighter pilots home after so many missions to train the next batch pilots . The German’s kept their fighters flying for as long as they could stay alive.

Thus, the top German fighter aces at the end of the war were the best fighter pilots around. But all of the rest of the German fighter pilots lacked basic tactical skills. The Americans aces never even came close to having the experience or skills that Germans aces had. But the quality of the American pilots over all was better.

One of the things to keep in mind about the American aces during World War II is that much of what they shot down were poorly skilled flyer’s who had little skills. This is especially true of those kills recorded in the latter part of the war.

But their is always exceptions. And one particular exception was Richard Candelaria’s last dogfight. In that dogfight, he tangled with two German jets and one yellow nosed BF 109 (the yellow nose being a sigh of an ace) as well as some 14 BF 109’s piloted by the usual low skill dog meat that the Germans threw up in the last part of the war. And he fought with all of them all by himself for what must have seemed like forever, but really was a matter of minutes.

The German’s always put their good pilots in the jets so Chandelaria was tangling with three good German fighter pilots in addition to the dog meat. Unlike so many other American air victories recorded in the latter part of the war, this dogfight took some real flying.

The clips below is part of series talking about mustang victories in World War II. But most of them where fights against low skill opponents. That is why I am only calling your attention to part 4 of 5 and part 5 of 5.

According to this account Chandelaria was shot down by German ground fire shortly after this battle took place. But since this account is based off of second and third hand sources and the writer was not even sure Chandelaria was still alive (he was cause History Channel talked with him for the above clips), I don’t know how far you should trust it.

McCain has picked Palin as his VP

And the Conservative base goes wild. Seriously wild.

Read this BlackFive Post and comment section to see how wild.

Read anyone of Rod Dreher’s posts on the subject (this one in particular). Keep in mind that he is someone who has said they would not vote for McCain.

Instapundit has a more balanced roundup of reactions.

The Volokh Conspiracy blows my mind with a collection of comments from Hillary supporters.

Regardless of the outcome, I am sorry that Palin was dragged into this election. It would have been better for her to stay in Alaska. But from McCain’s perspective, this was a good choice.

Sure he gives up the lack of experience line of attack. But he never could use this without reminding everyone that he an old man who has been in Washington forever. Besides, anyone who truly cared about experience was not going to vote for Obama anyway. So I don’t think McCain gave up a lot in that regards.

In return, McCain gets someone who can fire up the Republican base with out looking too scary to non base types, go head to head with Obama in both public speaking and good looks, and appeal to all those people for whom the gender of a candidate matters (except for those who think that nobody but a real man is fit for office. But what are they going to do, vote for Obama?).

One wrinkle on all this has not been mentioned is that Palin’s only real accomplishment has been to go after corruption in her own party. I wonder if this means that McCain wants to go after the rumors of corruption surrounding the political machine that put Obama in Congress. If that is true, I hope his people checked out the allegations that Palin was improperly involved in the firing of a trooper real throughly.

Edit: Here is the Wall Street Journal on the firing of the trooper….

He said afterwards that Gov. Palin and her husband had pressured him to remove a state trooper who was a former brother-in-law she and her family had feuded with. Gov. Palin denies that, saying she removed the commissioner she appointed 18 months ago because she wants “a new direction,” and offered him a job as liquor board director which he turned down.

The case stemmed from a messy divorce between the trooper, Mike Wooten, and his wife, Molly, who is Gov. Palin’s younger sister. In 2005, Gov. Palin alleged the trooper had threatened to harm her father and sister and that he had engaged in numerous instances of official misconduct, including using a Taser on his 10-year-old stepson and shooting a moose without a proper permit, according to state documents. In one instance, she told state investigators, she overheard him on the telephone threatening her sister: “I’m gonna f—shoot your dad. He’s gonna get a lead bullet.”

Mr. Wooten told investigators he tested a Taser on the boy at his request, thought he was within his rights to kill the moose and never threatened the Palins. An internal police investigation substantiated the moose and Tasering charges, but threw out most of the rest. He was ordered suspended for 10 days in 2006. He declined comment through a spokesman with the Public Safety Employees Association.

Many of Gov. Palin’s supporters dismiss the trooper matter as trouble being stirred up by her enemies. “Many of those who had been in positions of power and authority have been very envious over the past year and a half with Gov. Palin’s great popularity,” says David Carey, mayor of Soldotna, Alaska.

He tested a Taser on a boy and only got suspended for 10 days? If this is true I can see why McCain is not to worried about the whole thing.

Lies or incompetence?

The official bean counters say that GDP grew by 3.3% in the second quarter. Naked Capitalism argues that this is the result of lies. I say it is the result of incompetence. Unlike Yves, I don’t find it hard to believe that the government can not keep track of its expenditures in very well.

Also, it has been known for a while that the government is not properly accounting for inflation. This is long standing I don’t think you can say that it is being done by one administration for political reasons.Since inflation picked up sharply in the second quarter, it stands to reason that this distorted the statistics by more then usual. I don’t think we need to hint that somebody went out there way to manipulate the statistics.

Anthony Lane reports from Beijing

Rod Dreher said this about Anthony Lane: “If you want to be a writer, read him. Start with his report from the Beijing Olympics. And don’t stop.”

Naturally, I had to check it out.

He’s not bad that’s for sure. He made the a subject that I am not very interested in (The Olympics) interesting. But he did not quite manged to justify the demigod status that Mr. Dreher tried to ascribe to him.

Still his essay was interesting and I do not regret the time it took to read it. I think what made it interesting is that Mr. Lane was bored by most of the sporting events himself and so wrote about other things. Such as little red cars remote control cars….

The best thing about the shot put was the cars. After the shot landed, and the distance had been measured, the precious sphere would be retrieved by an official and placed in the cockpit of an automobile: two feet long, bright red, with a tail fin—in short, the idealized vehicle that I drew during chemistry lessons when I was nine years old. Now it exists, for real, and there are two Chinese fellows with the best job in the world, who get to steer it back to the shot-putting circle by remote control. (It can also bring a hammer, or even a javelin, which slots neatly into the fin.) I followed the gaze of the spectators around me, and realized that most of them had entirely lost interest in what was happening on the track, so urgently were they tracing the progress of the cars, and so hastily were they revising their list of what they want for Christmas.

Underlying the whole essay is a touch of knowing snark. I suppose that could become obnoxious if that is the style he writes in all the time, but I found it amusing in this piece. I actually laughed aloud at this bit…

The other mystery weapon in Lyon’s quiver was Phil Towle, a performance coach back in the States, whose online messages had been an inspiration. “He’s also been a psychologist for Metallica,” Ryan said, as if to justify the gentleman. I had to steady myself against a passing volunteer. Metallica has a psychologist? What, exactly, is it repressing in its sylvan melodies?

Things are different now

This is from the early 1800’s…..

In the case of pigs, much must depend upon the situation of the cottage; because all pigs will graze; and therefore on the skirts of forests or commons, a couple or three pigs may be kept, if the family be considerable; and especially if the cottager brew his own beer, which will give grains to assist the wash. Even in lanes, or on the sides of great roads, a pig will find a good part of his food from May to November; and if he be yoked, the occupiers of the neighbourhood must be churlish and brutish indeed, if they give the owner any annoyance…

The cottager’s pig should be bought in the spring or late in winter; and being then four months old, he will be a year old before killing time; for it should always be borne in mind, that this age is required in order to ensure the greatest quantity of meat from a given quantity of food. If a hog be more than a year old, he is the better for it. The flesh is more solid and more nutritious than that of a young hog, much in the same degree that the mutton of a full-mouthed wether is better than that of a younger wether. The pork or bacon of young hogs, even if fatted with corn, is very apt to boil out, as they call it; that is to say, come out of the pot smaller in bulk than it goes in. When you begin to fat, do it by degrees, especially in the case of hogs under a year old. If you feed high all at once, the hog is apt to surfeit and then a great loss of food takes place. Peas, or barley-meal, is the food; the latter rather the best, and does the work quicker. Make him quite fat by all means. The last bushel, even if he sit as he eat, is the most profitable. If he can walk two hundred yards at a time, he is not well fatted.

The whole essay was a fascinating look into the past.

Generals, Macro Man, and the Need for Courage

The difference between a good general and a bad general is simple. A good general wants to win; a bad general wants to avoid losing. Things like charisma, Intelligence, or training are of only minor importance.
Nothing demonstrates this better then the Civil War. George McClellan and Robert Lee had both graduated second in their class Click Here to continue reading.

This is why so few construction jobs have been lost

One of the great puzzles of our current economic troubles is how come construction employment has held up so well. The answer is simple. There is such a shortage of skilled tradesmen that a slow down just means that some of them finally get to work a 40 hour week. That means they are making less money then they where before, but they are still employed.

From EC&M Web….

According to survey respondents, contractors are devising a variety of strategies to overcome the shortfalls. Almost half the respondents reported a weekly work schedule of more than 40 hours. Two-thirds reported working their crews five days every week, and some schedules of 70 or more hours per week were reported.

The corollary to this that most of construction done recently is crap. There was not enough good people to do all the work being done even if the all the constructions companies had wanted to do good work. When people get done being outrage by all the obvious financial fraud that paid for boom, they are going to find that things were not done to any higher ethical standard on the bricks and motor end.

In Pakistan, mental illness is not a handicap

From the Economist….

With its other smaller allies, the PPP-led government will not fold. And if Mr Zardari is elected president, with the dictatorial powers that the job confers, as seems likely, the government will look more solid. If so, Mr Zardari might be seen to have bested both Pervez Musharraf, the former president, who resigned on August 19th to escape impeachment, and Mr Sharif, leader of the PPP’s biggest rival. For a man who recently stepped into the shoes of his dead wife, Benazir Bhutto, the PPP’s murdered leader, and who is reported to have serious mental illnesses, this would be an Olympian achievement.

Olive Garden having problems

For those who care....

A surprise warning on earnings by Darden Restaurants Inc. suggests that sit-down restaurants will continue struggling through the fall after a dismal summer.

On Tuesday, the parent of Olive Garden and Red Lobster said its earnings for the fiscal first quarter ended Aug. 24 would be below Wall Street’s expectations, and lowered its profit forecast for the year ending May 31.