1. Stephen is a total quiet badass, and that entire sequence in THE SURGEON'S MATE is so tense and exciting! One of my favorite moments in the series -- and I love how wonderful and brave Diana is. For me it pretty much redeemed any momentary qualm I had had about his feelings for her -- she showed exactly why he loves her.

  2. As a medical man Stephen is an expert in human anatomy, as a naval surgeon to an active captain he is accustomed to rivers of blood. And as an intelligence agent with a fervent hate for Buonaparte and the Imperial system, he is ruthless.

  3. The 2nd Amendment did not exist during the Revolution. The Constitution and Bill of Rights were written years later.

  4. I guess that’s what spending half of the entire world’s military budget on one country gets us. Imagine if we didn’t spend money on all our overseas bases, which are a big money sink.

  5. My father received his draft notice on his 18th birthday. He fortunately was able to test into doing electronics in the air force and didn't get sent to Vietnam.

  6. Also, that we're all so divided, on so many levels. We divide ourselves on race, religion, political alignment, social class, economic class, etc. They had the vaxed and the unvaxed hating each other. Hell, we even argue about what generation we're a part of. Lots of Boomers hate Gen X, both hate Millennials, and likewise, Millennials hate Gen X and Boomers. We shouldn't even be called the United States anymore. We've never been so divided.

  7. Absolutely. I guess the question is, what can we do? Why can't anyone see this, and unify against the real for here? Half the time when I talk to people about this, it's like talking to a fucking wall. They either don't get it at all, or they refuse to believe it.

  8. I'd like to see our schools teaching Internet skills in the sense of never accepting a set of facts that seem to be true without investigating at least one contrary narrative then critically comparing the two.

  9. I used to chuckle at an occasional funny passage while reading through the books. But I recently started listening to Patrick Tull's narration and WOW! does he highlight the hilarious parts. I love his imitation of Killick, especially. Other dog walkers give me funny looks as I walk along grinning or chuckling. The latest funny bit was in "The Surgeon's Mate" where Tull imitates the high pitched voice of a very young midshipman coming to summon Babbington and Jack to the captain's cabin. I got out of breath listening to that one.

  10. And then motherfuckers complain about a “Food desert” in their communities waaah!

  11. This is what you get after subjecting a minority to 500 years of slavery, colonialism, and denial of civil rights, education and economic opportunity.

  12. Both Parties are Crooked as a Dog's Dick, The last loud mouth simply pissed in the media's Wheaties so they are after his head. They ALL are fucking Crooks.

  13. Anybody who says both parties are equally crooked is badly misinformed. I don't love the Democrats, but they often try to solve problems for everyday people. The Republicans just want to funnel more money to the wealthy and powerful.

  14. He was really from Louisiana, but they didn't want to call him Louise!

  15. Yeah. There were so many things we learned by word of mouth that turned out to be wrong.

  16. . "And their “education” is just indoctrination with a side of actual learning."

  17. LOL! As if the Etonians weren't steeped in "King and empire" propaganda. They may have been good in the Latin and Greek classics, but Eton also prepared the children of Britain's wealthy elites to run one of the biggest and most brutal empires known to man.

  18. I'm not sure that Cheney had any benefits directly; he already had retired and received his compensation package from Haliburton. While I disagree with a lot of Cheney's policies (enhanced interrogation, him pushing for Iraq against the IC, etc). Haliburton winning government contracts is not surprising and continues to this day via KBR. If there was corruption within the executive, there have been three administrations (so far) that have had the opportunity to investigate and press charges.

  19. The John Birch Society was a similar movement through much of the 20th century. It was right-wing cranks screaming about the United Nations and Jewish bankers and loss of freedom, blah blah blah. Not sure if the Birchers were just an American thing or if they were in other countries.

  20. The John Birch Society and the Tea Party movement were both financed by the

  21. Spy on the Roof of the World by Sidney Wignell. A true story about being captured in the high Indian Himalaya by the Chinese, accused of spying and how he escaped. It's a real 1950s adventure tale with real heart.

  22. Neither of my parents were readers beyond newspapers and the occasional magazine. So in retrospect it's surprising that their bedside table held a hidden copy of a book titled "The Prayer Mat of Flesh" more commonly published as "

  23. Hey, I have both Spy on the Roof of the World and The Prayer Mat of Flesh.

  24. I can't claim a sustained interest in China/Tibet and surroundings although I was fascinated by Elizabeth Foreman's "To Beat A Tiger" and "Young Fu" as a child, and read some of Pearl Buck's better-known books. Barbara Tuchman's "Stillwell and the American Experience in China" was illuminating, and "Mao: The Unknown Story" by Jung Chang. I'm a bit surprised to find "The Carnal Prayer Mat" still in print since in the end it seemed more allegorical and philosophical than erotic. Thanks for your recommendations.

  25. There are two different manufacturers for Girl Scout cookies and which one you receive is based on the troop that your order from (and what area they are in). Generally you can find out pretty easily which one you are getting cookies from then find someone who is serviced by the other manufacturer instead.

  26. The Girl Scouts lost me when they went from $3.50/box to $4.00/box a few years ago. I bought from them half for the cookies and half to support a youth organization. But at $4.00/box the cookie sale started to feel like a ripoff.

  27. Bronze stars are a huge honor. Its like the third (or fourth?) highest honor a US Army soldier can earn.

  28. A Bronze Star without the 'V' (for valor) device is the military's version of Employee of the Month. It means you were hard working and good at your job -- or maybe your CO just liked you.

  29. Those boats never made any sense to me. They had no meaningful armor and you could hear them coming a mile away. Ambushing them was a piece of cake. It's not like they could take a different trail. Their main defense was all the machine guns they mounted.

  30. As a Minnesotan this is not really a “black” ice situation. It’s pretty obvious ice is present and not really hidden. Black ice is when the conditions are good, roads plowed and the ice is practically hidden due to the appearance of good conditions.

  31. I lived four years in the Colorado mountains. People with 4-wheel-drive often think that means they can speed through any conditions ... snow, rain, ice.

  32. We had a LCpl who was a grade A fuck up. He was married, he drove his gf up to the radio tower on Pendleton.

  33. Best description would be the same as hitting concrete at terminal velocity

  34. I think this is a sign of how O'Brian writes about the ships (most of them) as characters in their own right. One of the things that made Mauritius Command slightly less great for me, was that the Boadicea and the Raisonnable didn't really come to life the way that Surprise, Leopard, Polychrest, Sophie etc did.

  35. You forgot to add "the horrible old" before the name Leopard. ;)

  36. Both suck, neither have made significant advances for our benefit in the past 20 years, and pretending like they have gets us nowhere

  37. She actually served as a nurse in ww2, so it's entirely feasible she di$ this as part of her training

  38. It is, but why aren the companies that drilled on the hook for this. I'm happy my taxes are helping the environment, but how about some accountability for these corporations going forward?

  39. My wife had an oilman as a client once, actually his wife. So we occasionally went to dinner with them. I said something about his oil company once and he let slip he actually had 24 oil companies! What? Why? He said he'd start a company, drill a well or two and if he got dry holes or marginal wells he'd try to sell the company or if not let it go bankrupt. That way his liabilities disappeared and I believe there were tax breaks too. His business sounded like a scam where he couldn't lose money and sometimes made a LOT! He also had a company IIRC that sold or leased drilling equipment, mostly to his own companies with a lot of off-the-books deals and other tricks. He had a couple of congressmen on speed dial.

  40. I love winter. I hate the transition from winter to spring when some snow banks melt and others just sit there drooling ice water until July. I HATE mud.

  41. We have to give loads to the americans who come here to train every few years. Newspaper: Norwegians collecting wool socks for american soldiers unprepared for Norwegian winter. Every time.

  42. Back in the 1970s when everybody was scared of the Soviet Union I belonged to a U.S. Marine Reserve unit. Our job if World War 3 happened was to get on transports and fly to somewhere in Norway to defend something against Russians landing from the sea. We had no winter gear whatsoever and no heavy weapons such as mortars, machine guns or anti-tank rockets. Only M-16s. We "trained" for one weekend a month and two weeks each summer so the college students and school teachers could go along.

  43. MSN republished no paywall link

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