Napoleonic & ECW wargaming, with a load of old Hooptedoodle on this & that


Thursday, 14 January 2021

Hooptedoodle #382: Boomerwaffen - not front-line troops?

 This is a very upsetting time, all things considered, and the world does not require yet another smart-ass to try to say something clever or amusing about the tragic horror-show at the Capitol last week, but there is an aspect of the event which everyone seems to have attempted to avoid noticing; so, being naturally stupid and tactless, I thought I'd mention it. 


As I understand things, one protestor was fatally shot by security personnel, one policeman died from injuries received in the conflict, and a further policeman has subsequently committed suicide. All this is very sad and regrettable, and there was mention of three more protestors who succumbed to what were described as "medical emergencies". Again, I was very sorry to learn of this, but I was vaguely interested (not morbidly, I hope), wondering whether this was some kind of woke euphemism for "died of teargas" or similar.

Apparently not. It does shine a light on who these people were who forced their way into the Capitol on 6th January. There were guys climbing up buildings and getting into fist fights and so on, which is what we might expect from urban terrorists, but it is very obvious from the photos that many of them did not look like the sort of assault troops you would hand pick for your Forlorn Hope. Not grenadiers. A pretty high proportion of Mr Trump's enthusiastic followers are, to be blunt about it, elderly or overweight. Frequently both. I deeply regret that anyone should have been hurt or killed at all, though it could be said that they shouldn't have been there - if you stand in the middle of the highway, you will probably suffer for it. One lady died, they think, because she was trampled in the melee. One 50-year old man died of a stroke at the scene - his friends said he was very excited by the events of the day. 


One 55-year old, known to have a history of hypertension, had a fatal heart attack. He is quite an interesting fellow; described by his family as a good man, who would never have harmed anyone, he seems to have had a tendency to post pictures of himself on Parler (now defunct, of course), wielding his automatic rifles, and proposing that like-minded citizens should be prepared to take back their country with guns.


Right.

Didn't work out too well, did it? These people were obviously just not up to being commandos. If the Proud Boys and the Bikers for Trump and all the rest of the Boomerwaffen are going to commit to doing this sort of thing on a regular basis, they had better make sure they have paramedics with them, to look after the "medical emergency" casualties. Or maybe they could discourage their more frail colleagues from coming along.

Once again, I am at pains to emphasise that I do not wish to judge or disrespect any individual, so please don't bother flaming me, and I am sorry that people died or were injured, but Darwin is never far away if you look out for him.



40 comments:

  1. Yep. This seems like a very fair assessment.

    Best Regards,

    Stokes

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Stokes. There was an unsubstantiated rumour that the heart-attack victim accidentally hurt himself with a taser he had in his pocket. I really don't think this kind of fake news helps very much...

      Delete
  2. Yes all a bit odd for a coup - we certainly managed things better in 1814!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes - you're right. Which reminds me - I have the Speaker of the House's laptop, which I took as a souvenir in 1814. Do you think this could be the time to offer it for sale on eBay?

      Delete
  3. The American Police force seems a bit on the 'chunky' side of things as well .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Tony - seems like a general problem. Maybe the Capitol police gig is normally not a very active one? Once again (yet again!) I am reminded of Ridley Scott's movie about Gettysburg; a serious proportion of the ACW reenactors who turned out to volunteer their services were very obviously too heavy and too old to make convincing soldiers, and had to be placed in the background of the battlefield shots. This required a lot of tact and careful handling - Scott was quoted as saying that an army which looked as though it could just about march to the refreshment tent needed a lot of concealment.

      Same over here now, I guess. Toward the end of my days of taking the kids camping in France, you could spot the Brits a mile away from their average physique. Must say, I'm not doing so well for exercise myself during lockdown, but I'm deliberately keeping the calories down! How's your walking schedule for this year? I need inspiration!

      Delete
    2. Tony, if you think of Capitol Police as TSA (in the USA) airport security whose main duties are checking handbags and ID, you would not be far removed from their Statement of Work and physical demands.

      Delete
    3. Aiming for 3 miles a day - which in the present weather is challenging - the dog's not keen of walking in the wet.

      Delete
  4. Although your characterization of the drooling mob that stormed our capital is spot on, I am distressed that you choose to use the noble donkey as an award namesake. Comparing these intelligent creatures to the nimrods rioting in DC is an affront to donkeys everywhere.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Guilty as charged, your Honour - I can only apologize - can only bray for forgiveness.

      Delete
  5. Replies
    1. Wacky. Very scary indeed. A complete generation seems to have grown up who are convinced that everything that's less than perfect in their lives is someone else's fault. Pass the ammunition and the fried chicken. Hallelujah.

      Delete
  6. Thank you for posting this. I admit I have been in a state of shock and very depressed about these events. It's been very difficult to do anything.

    But after reading your post it cheered me up greatly. Boomerwaffen? Great expression. A good man who would never harm anyone? Outstanding! For the first time in weeks I have laughter out loud. Many thanks for doing this! I can return to our hobby now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Mark - I smile bravely, to fight back the tears...

      Saddest thing about the man with the matching automatic rifles (and surely that has to be one of the great Xmas photos?) is that he posted a mass of stuff on Parler, much of it very extreme, about death and violence, but hardly anyone ever read any of it.

      Without wishing to attempt any major comment about social media (I am not well placed to attempt this), it does seem to encourage theoretical heroes. It's very sad that Mr Greeson suddenly (fleetingly?) had to come to terms with the fact that reality is not quite the same thing, and is dangerous - I hope he didn't suffer, but I sincerely hope his friends shat themselves. His sacrifice might achieve a lot of beneficial education. Let's hope.

      Delete
  7. It is certainly a strange old world Tony...
    I do think that people of a certain age should think twice before trying to storm the barricades on Capitol Hill...
    I for one would have to give it a great deal of consideration and planning...

    Are there lots of stairs to climb...?
    Will I be able to be dropped off at or near the door...?
    What /who should I come dressed as...? (I do actually have a MAGA cap... which was of course made in China...🙄😳)
    Is there easy access to toilets...?
    Is there a tea room...?
    Is there a gift shop...?
    Will I get back home in time to watch Dr Who on the TV...?

    I wait with interest and a little touch of dread to see what the Pumpkin Headed buffoon does next... and then of course denies ...

    All the best... Aly


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Aly - I've taken careful notes - I see you a natural at planning insurrections.

      I'm running out of opportunities to gather more evidence (I sincerely hope), but I have gradually come to believe that the Orange One does not tell lies - he actually believes what he says. I'm glad I never realised this earlier, or I'd have been even more terrified over the last few years.

      Perhaps he will just go away and shut up? That would be good.

      Delete
    2. Aly, you've marked yourself as a clear and present danger. Take great care when opening your door to strangers.

      Delete
    3. I think Aly is like me - he'll be OK because he will be wearing a facemask. Aly is probably more likely to get visitors than I am anyway - pretty quiet here on the dark side of the moon. Doorbell rings and I'm in the bunker, right away.

      Delete
    4. I wear a facemask to talk to myself in the mirror... you can’t take any chances... I have also lined my MAGA cap with tin foil...
      The bunker in the cellar is ready and so is the bunker under the bunker in the cellar... it is stuffed full of toilet paper 🤪🤪🤪

      Delete
    5. Aly - this is all admirable - as you say, caution is essential. The tinfoil-lined MAGA cap somehow makes me think of Chuck McGill from the Better Call Saul series.

      Delete
  8. I can’t stop my bad side coming out Tony. I just had to laugh when I read about Tommy Two-guns popping his clogs. But I’m just an evil woke liberal communist.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The lady who was trampled was the one which bothered me most - very sad - especially if it was immediately she got inside the door. "YEA! - oh crap...". You know what I mean? I also see that Bigo Barnett, the hero in Pelosi's office who nicked her computer, is likely to get 10 years gaol minimum - I don't think he's going to enjoy that. It'll give him some time to think. Or maybe not, I guess.

      Delete
  9. Great post...I must restrain myself from saying what I really think...it would likely offend some. Let's just say I am also a Liberal woke pinko fag non American who thinks if it had been a Black Lives Matter crowd (and don't get me wrong, I don't have a lot of sympathy for them either) there would have been a more robust police response....maybe, like during the original Revolution, what they need is their French allies to do the heavy lifting...CRS anyone?!

    ReplyDelete
  10. A glimpse into the future of humanity.

    And the past, what crazy riots many ancient cities had. Like too many rats in a cage. Smacks of an extraterrestial labratory experiment.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Very sobering insight Ross - thanks for this.

      Delete
  11. Thank God I live in the UK. We'd never be governed by some overbearing buffoon with a stupid haircut.

    Oh...maybe not then.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've been thinking about this. It seems that one of the reasons democracy has survived this threat in the US - albeit momentarily and by a slender thread - is that just about enough of the Republicans have chosen to recall that they are supposed to be above all public servants rather than enablers of a dictator. I don't have anything like that level of confidence in our Tory Party here in the UK. If there was a similar power grab over this side of the Atlantic I can't honestly see the Tories doing anything but fall into line to accommodate it while the Daily Mail cheers them on and condemns any opponents as enemies of the people. I hope I never have to find out if I am right about that, but these days you never know.

      Delete
    2. Seeing as how the Daily Mail (hawk, spit) no longer approves of Boris ("not the Boris we voted for" - you WHAT??), they would need some new dictator to promote. I think one saving grace is that in the UK we could not organise a decent rebellion - no-one would be able to agree who was in charge, or what to do next, and someone would pinch all the money and eat all the sandwiches. I think that at least buys us a little time.

      Delete
    3. Couldn't you just give back unfettered authority to the Crown like in the good ol' days?

      Delete
  12. That was a well crafted and restrained response to the events of last week here in the states. Frankly I am still trying to digest how we can go forward with so much baffoonery. I did hear an interesting report last night about how slow we have been to recognize the growing threat of the alt-right and the stark disparities in the preparation for this "protest" vs the way the BLM protests were characterized and protections taken. It is really making us take a hard look at the dangers of unrestricted violent rhetoric. The first amendment pertains to governmental restrictions of free speech, but is not a blanket protection for hate speech and certainly not for threats of violence. It will be interesting to see how big tech continues to react as defamation suits and other legal ramifications of hosting violent hate speech percolate through the courts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I find it difficult to avoid the thought that someone in the White House deliberately hamstrung the security effort for 6th Jan - evidence of planning? The truth will come out, I'm sure. I can't get over this new, post-Twitter, paternal, law-supporting Trump we've seen recently. Who writes his stuff? It's garbage, of course, and disgusting, but interesting.

      Delete
  13. I've had an irritating comms blackout (ageing Luddite + new laptop = total loss of patience) so I'm really chuffed I got the confounded thing to work at last so I could read this and the comments. Sorry for the 'victims' of this palaver, of course, but this was the best laugh I've had in ages.
    I was thinking at the time the Insurrection was unfolding that it was some twisted US hybrid of Dad's Army and The Thick of It.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Did you buy the laptop from an unshaven man with wild eyes and a beanie hat? Hmmm.

      Delete
  14. I received an email from Prof De Vries, who still refuses to have any kind of personal account with Big Tech, and he sent an interesting link to a video clip featuring some nutcase named Strager who has now been arrested for beating a policeman in the Capitol with a flagpole - the vid was of Mr Strager, having emerged from the Capitol, screaming about how death is the only way to treat everyone in the Capitol, since they are all treasonous traitors (or something). I am unable to get the clip to work now, so maybe the vid has been removed, and the link no longer works, otherwise I would have reproduced it here.

    The Prof makes the point that this riot is an example of what he calls Rule by Tantrum - like a small child trashing his playroom and his toys; it must feel good for about 15 seconds, but what does he do tomorrow, next week...?

    It's evident that some of the intruders were well equipped, knew what they were doing, probably ex military. Whether or not these guys were actual Trump supporters, or merely Rent-an-Anarchist, I have no idea. They have obviously thought this through before, but how far they've thought it through is a matter of moot. The Prof suggests that the older Trumpistas are going to get pretty upset some weeks into the New Age, in the chaos and communications void which replaces the national infrastructure, when no-one collects the garbage, the street lights don't come on, there is no food in the stores, the hospitals are closed, etc etc. Which traitor will they hang for that one? Presumably the guys with the biggest guns will have all the beer?

    Darwin is watching.

    It is essential to tie these things back to the "Waterloo" movie, to set a more comfortable context - after taking back control of Paris, Napoleon gets busy organising things: "When it wakes up in the morning, France must have a government!"

    Right on. That's the bit the Boomerwaffen haven't thought about yet. De Vries makes the point that the CSA (as an example) did have a government, and a pretty effective established infrastructure at State level - you can't run anything just by shouting and firing guns into the air. Monster Energy Drinks must be making a fortune out of this?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Goodness, that's a whole new conspiracy theory I hadn't considered. May be the whole thing has been engineered by the producers of caffeine-based beverages? And to think I thought Amazon were at the bottom of every conspiracy.

      Delete
    2. Don't change your bet just yet - I understand that Amazon are one of the biggest sellers of Monster in the US. Interestingly, that European Red Bull stuff is the US's biggest selling energy drink - that can't be right, surely?

      Delete
  15. Unfortunately, guns and explosives still work pretty well even for the obese and out of shape. While it has been pleasant to hear little or nothing from the Cheeto in Chief the past week, I fear the far right, white supremacist (etc) factions he has incited the past 4 years will be heard from again, and in far more violent fashions, in the months and years to come. I pray to be wrong about that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Peter - can't disagree with that, but it does come as a bit of a surprise, over here in the watching world, to see that Trump's "patriots" (many of whom are now claiming that they should be pardoned because he incited them - let's see him talk his way out of that one...) were mostly so inept and so unfit. If I had to face up to armed terrorists (not an attractive idea) I'd fancy my chances against the Proud Boys rather than your average fully-trained jihadists any day - no question. It may not alter the fact that there are threats, but it certainly reduces the potential numbers.

      Delete
  16. I heartily concur with pretty much everything expressed here EXCEPT for the "Boomerwaffen" appellation. Yah, a lot of the "Patriots" were tubby wanna-be's in their 50's (or older), but not all of them by any stretch. If they really were all Boomers, the problem would take care of itself in a few years. Unfortunately, photographs of modern-day Nazis indicate most of them are in their 20's and 30's--apparently there are a lot of guys out there who have never been laid.

    So my preference is "Moronwaffen"--probably more accurate anyway.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Chris - thanks for this. My original script line for this post was simple: it is evident from the photos that a lot of these protestors should not have been out without their carers. I don't have any sticks in this fire - my view is that of a horrified outsider; my understanding is filtered from CNN and Vanity Fair and Seth Meyers and a number of US sources who, in their own way, are certainly biased too. My use of the terminology is borrowed too - all proxy, including any pejorative overtones. We don't really have Boomers in the UK - well, I guess we have them, but the word isn't used here, and any implied stereotypes do not necessarily come in the same packaging. Morons - whatever - hey.

      I have become kind of transfixed by the astounding goings-on in the US over the last few years. Not my country, almost certainly none of my business, but I am still a potential casualty of the official disregard for environmental dangers, or of any potential nuclear food-fight with Mr Kim, and I am deeply offended by the blatant - nay, posturing - suppression of truth and decency in the cause of self-interest.

      Some things are too evil to persist. Some people are too dumb to survive. I am stunned that the idiots who stormed the Capitol, having filmed themselves (to make it easier to track them down), are now shocked to learn that someone may be upset and they may be held to account. What did they think was happening? - was it a video game? - reality TV, perhaps? Some very over-excited, stupid, angry people on display - for the entire world to see. Some of them, I am interested to learn, are now claiming that they should be pardoned because they were acting on the directions of the POTUS. Fantastic. The analytical sophistication, the pitch of debate, the morality are all straight out of the WWE. How profoundly embarrassing is that?

      I hope this all eventually blows over - if the underlying driver is really racism than that is a major problem - I can see that, but I still like to think that Americans are mostly good-hearted people. The Arch Dumpling himself I don't see as a threat - he is unlikely to survive any great length of time anyway, with his age and build, and many of his followers seem determined to die of Covid, so things may change quickly. I have no idea what happens next, of course. I would not like him to become any kind of perverse martyr. I wish him to have a long, impecunious, non-influential, quiet, ridiculous and appropriately miserable retirement. By legend, the mental institutions of the world are full of people who think they are Napoleon, so someone who thinks he is the President is not entirely unexpected. His downfall is also significant in that it removes a role-model. Who will Boris admire now?

      Delete