Saturday, April 28, 2012

Hari Seldon had the right idea

For those not in the know, Hari Seldon is a main character in Asimov's "Foundation" series.  Essentially, he foresaw the collapse of a galactic civilization, and took steps to shorten the interregnum to the next civilization that would arise after the dark ages.

Conventional wisdom is that we aren't voting our way out of the current crisis, and I happen to agree.  Those don't tend to think too deeply take that statement to mean that I think it's time to start shooting.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  Someone (maybe Tam, or Uncle or the Pantsless One-I can't recall) pointed out that shooting our way out will inevitably end with people having to line a subset of  their friends, neighbors and family against the wall.  I am not, and probably never will be, prepared to do that.  Calling for a violent solution to our troubles without explicitly acknowledging this reality is foolhardy at best.

I am convinced that the republic will fall in the next 100 years.  If the election of Barack Obama was a one off, if so many crucial institutions had not been infect with overt and covert statist/collectivist influences, if we had not devoted so much energy to dismantling our own liberties, then perhaps she could be saved.  The fact that after 4 years of abject failure, scandal, state facilitated murder, deliberate over-reach and blatant unconstitutional acts, Obama is looking at possibly being reelected and not jail time tells me we're done.  That anyone could consider voting for him to get a second term, let alone a number near enough to have the election in doubt, means we're nearing the end.

So, what do we do about it.  Voting isn't going to work.  Shooting isn't an option.  There's no where else to go, so leaving isn't an option.  All that is left, I fear, is planting seeds that you know will lie dormant for generations in the hope that the tree of liberty will sprout and flower again.  If that's all that is left to us, then how to set about doing it?

I'm still here

Life in meatspace has seriously cramped my blogging.  I've posted a few things over at Huffpo, stopping to laugh at new BC head Dan Gross.  Considering that he makes Helmke seem erudite, I think we are doing well on that front.

The Martin/Zimmerman tragedy:  Briefly, when the story first broke, based on the reportage, I was convinced that Zimmerman stalked and murdered Martin.  Seeing that every piece of reporting was slanted to specifically elicit that reaction without regard to what actually happened, I have revised my stance.  Almost without fail, every story deliberately omitted exculpatory facts, doctored video and selectively edited audio.  Until conclusive evidence to the contrary is presented, my take is that Martin doubled back, jumped and attempted to kill Zimmerman by pounding his head against the sidewalk.  Bob Owens (formerly of Confederate Yankee) has had excellent coverage, with too many posts to link to.  I am fervently hoping that we can avoid a race war, and a small part of me cynically believes that perhaps Obama thinks a race war might help him hold onto power.

A bunch of Joyce foundation shills got into a debate online regarding open carrying of firearms.  Look at the up and down vote totals for a sense of what grassroots really are.  Of course, at one point the CSGV had linked to the debate page since their director is one of the shills.  Since we drank their milkshake, all mention of it has dropped.

Fast and Furious, a scandal resulting more than 300 dead based on the DOJ misguided attempt to pad gun recovery statistics, is still creeping along.  The most transparent and ethical administration, evah, has steadfastly refused to comply with congressional subpoenas demanding details.  Looking forward to seeing Holder in "pound me in the ass" prison, but we shall see.

On that note, I'd like to extend my best wishes to Mike Vanderboegh at Sipsey Street Irregulars.  He's had some rough times recently with some health related issues, but without him and David Codrea we'd never have heard of this.  Finally, there is work afoot to make a documentary of this travesty, and that takes money. Head over here to see the details, and help out if you can.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Ladd's new strategy

For the last two days, Ladd Everitt, as well as about half a dozen fellow travelers have been spamming the hell out of the Starbucks facebook page.  Unsurprisingly, each of their posts draws resonses form 20-30 different individuals, as well as even more people simply dropping by to encourage the coffee giant to stick to selling coffee and not trampling peoples basic rights.  Ladd has been getting more and more strident, and occasionally when someone in reply says something mean he grabs a screencap and either posts it on the CSGV FB page or he tweets it.

He just posted his cell number.  On the Starbucks FB page.

He is begging for someone to call him and say something mean or threatening, or that could be twisted to sound mean or threatening.

I've been wondering why the CSGV bigwig would be punching down for such a long time, and this is the only thing that makes sense.  Given their propensity for taking anyone trolling to be an activist (check their note on Abby Spangler-sumdood named "steamingpoopfart" left a nasty comment to Abby and he's now a gun rights activist.)

I have no doubt that in the event that no one obliges him, he'll have an intern call and say mean things.

UPDATE:  Right on cue...

Monday, February 13, 2012

Keep this in mind

HR822, the national concealed carry reciprocity bill has passed the house and will possibly get a senate vote this year.  If this happens you can count on all manner of lies, obfuscation and general pants shitting hysteria.

It's almost assured that a hit piece written by Michael Luo for the NYT will be cited incessantly.  It goes without saying the "article" is fraught with falsehoods, but fear not.

Sean Sorrentino, working with NC state legislator Grass Roots North Carolina president Paul Valone, has managed to paint Luo into a corner and effectively refute Luo's piece. (Thanks Sean)

Remember this post when this comes up for debate.

The mask slips again

Advocates for gun control will frequently scoff at the notion that they support widespread citizen disarmament.  "Heller took that off the table" or some variant is what they say.  The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence has posted another screed demonizing gun owners, highlighting the following quote from one of their true believers:

"A "parent" who sees no problem with possession and use of a weapon is bad enough."

Being a parent and in possession of weapons while possessing the will to use them, should the need arise, is a bad thing.  Bad enough, apparently, to move you from parent to "parent".  Leaving aside for a moment how twisted it is to view the responsible exercise of a basic human right as bad, how can you hold this view of firearms ownership, be fired up enough to blog/comment/tour/speak/fund-raise and NOT advocate for total disarmament?  The fact is that you cannot.  Anyone that feels this way about firearms must, as a matter of consistency, be working toward their removal from society.

And who is this "Pastoral Counselor" that CSGV quotes?  None other than Craig Hexham.  Yes, it's one of the folks from that I pointed to in my opening post detailing why I blog anonymously.    We should also point out that Hexham thinks that dealing with people lawfully selling their firearms via private sales should be dealt with much more harshly than people viewing "pictures of 16 year old girls on the internet" should be .

When kiddie porn (as I am assuming that is what he is referring to since non-pornographic pictures of kids do not draw squads of armed men to your house) is less objectionable than firearms, then clearly you must work to eliminate firearms from society.  To do anything less is inhuman, and that is precisely how they view us.

For the record, while I appreciate the frustration of the father in the video linked above, I do not think that I would respond in the same fashion to one of my children behaving badly.  But, it's his kid-it's his decision.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

PEG Facebook link

PEG linked to this post, hie hence and express yourself. Make certain to include the fact that it was PEG that alerted you to the story.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Tweaking Their Noses

Earlier I referenced the notion of using the anti-rights social media to tweak their noses by going to articles they link and mentioning in the comments how the article was found.  It's possible that this is juvenile and ineffective, but it is my opinion that the way to keep moving public opinion in our direction is to juxtapose the truth with their lies.  By linking back to their social media sites, at worst it will have no effect.  At best, it will force them to adjust what they are doing.  Somewhere in  middle, it will hopefully cause Ladd Everitt a bit of heartburn-assuming that is he even bothers himself with a fourth stringer "insurrectionist" from the practice squad such as myself.

To that end here are a few more:  Head over and follow suit if you're so inclined.

PEG linked this one:

CSGV linked this one:  (I see Sean Sorrentino has already been there as well.)

Sunday, February 5, 2012

The mask slips

Anti gun organizations like Brady typically poopoo as tinfoil hat nonsense the notion that they want to disarm the public at large.  The latest group on the block, the NGVAC, described any sane gun law as one that allows the government to take your guns.  Perhaps it was poorly worded?  Perhaps we misuderstood the format that they were using to structure the layout of information on the page?

Or, perhaps they were just say what they meant.

"As our population is 5 times that of England’s (300 million vs. 60 million) we should expect 5 times their gun homicides each year or 375.  In fact we have 12,000 each year.  But in our country, not only do criminals have all the guns they want*, but so do the law-abiding citizens. 
We would have a fraction of the gun homicides we have if only the criminals had guns.  Criminals are interested in getting money, not in killing people.  Over 50% of U.S. gun homicides are due to arguments not criminals. (FBI Annual Uniform Crime Reports)."

If your primary goal is elimination of gun violence, and you feel that a particular group (in this case law abiding gun owners) is causing most of that violence, then any rational person would  try to disarm that group.  They do want to take your guns away.  Of course we need to remember how this colors the Brady campaign as well.

I will leave it to those better suited to fisk the nonsense regarding the percent of homicides due to argument vs criminal behavior, but here's a hint-criminals have friends, family and associates that they argue with...

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

A thought on Reasoned Discourse

We all know that groups like CSGV and the Brady Campaign (but I repeat myself) will stifle any dissent in any forum over which they have editorial control.  How does one get the truth to sit in juxtaposition to their lies when they simply scrub anything they object to?  One way is to follow their Facebook pages, which will link to various news articles that allow comments while not letting them have editorial control.

Just make sure that when you go to the linked news story to leave a comment that you mention how you found the article.  We can make everything they link to a painful, public reminder of their journey to history's ashheap.  If it gets bad enough, they may stop linking to stories altogether, or perhaps only linking to stories that allow for no comment.  Either way, it's a win.

I've done two here and here.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

They really are just one organization

Bitter and Linoge both have excellent posts pointing out how the latest gun ban organization to hit the street is composed of first and second stringers from the more well know organizations such as CSGV and Brady.  Pictures, being worth a pile of words, are often more helpful.

The biggest surprise to me was that the NYT pointed out that Congressman Giffords is a supporter of gun rights.

Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to wish Congressman Giffords well. 

Women and Guns

Just a few quick thoughts:

1)  There is nothing inherently masculine or unfeminine about shooting.  Please encourage the women in your life to try shooting.  They may find an activity that they enjoy and that could prove very useful.  To that end, there is a new annual event that I wholeheartedly support and endorse.  It's national Take Your Daughter to the Range Day.  Deets here.  If I had a daughter that this was appropriate for, I'd surely be taking here.  The blogger linked to is a fairly new female shooter and has some excellent thoughts on firearms, defense and being a female shooter.

2)  The best gun for a woman is the one she likes to shoot.  Unless she's planing on carting about inside of, or operating with her lady bits, her plumbing is perfectly irrelevant.  Women have sufficient strength, intelligence and mechanical aptitude to operate and maintain any modern duty pistol or revolver.  Breda (sadly no longer blogging but has an excellent archive) has gone to great lengths over this.

3)  Manufacturers-talk to the ladies to find out what they want.  Don't just slap a pink grip on something, call it "Lady Blastomatic" and feel like you've successfully reached out.  Miguel has some thoughts here.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Starbucks Buycott

Sebastian over at "Shall Not be Questioned" has deets on a buycott prompted by the latest rehashed gun ban org calling for a boycott because Sbux refuses to deny carriers of firearms a cup of coffee.  Anyone wanting to stand up to these bullies is encouraged to buy a coffee or three on Valentine's Day this year.

Barron suggests tipping w/ a $2 bill with a note attached explaining why-I concur.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Swirling into irrelevancy

NY State has a ballistic database that requires a spent casing from every new pistol sold in the state.  It has been active for 10 years, cost tens of millions of dollars and has solved exactly 0 crimes.  In fact in the entire time of its use, it has only found two matches, neither of which led to a conviction.

Annual reports from the NY State Police can be found here.

On page 135 of the 2009 report, we see the two hit reference.  Looking at earlier years we see that the hits did not result in solved crimes.

Gov. Cuomo's new budget proposes defunding CoBISS , and Assemblywoman Michelle Schimel (one of NY's worst anti-gun politicians) is all aflutter, describing this as a step backwards in fighting crime as quoted in the Daily News. 

When you see stopping something that has been perfectly ineffective in order to move resources to something that does work as a "step backwards", that could be why your movement is loosing at every turn.

It also puts a lie to the notion that these people are doing what they are doing for "public safety".  Fighting to keep pouring resources down an ineffective sinkhole because it is part of the gun control laundry list of stuff to do sort of lets the mask slip.
NY Gun Law Triggers Confusion-CNN

There have been three fairly high profile cases where out of state folks have been arrested for pistol possession in NY.  Mark Meckler (who probably should have been protected under FOPA) attempted to declare and legally check a pistol into his luggage for a flight while Meredith Graves and Ryan Jerome both attempted to check what they believed to be legally possessed pistols at NYC tourist attractions.

It's nice to see the laws in NY getting some almost even handed scrutiny (CNN tracked down Richard Aborn but couldn't find Tom King or Jacob Reiper?), but this article does not even scratch the surface.

For example, according to NY criminal law,

 "Firearm" means (a) any pistol or revolver; or (b) a shotgun having
  one or more barrels less than eighteen inches in length; or (c) a  rifle
  having  one  or  more barrels less than sixteen inches in length; or (d)
  any  weapon  made  from  a  shotgun  or  rifle  whether  by  alteration,
  modification,  or  otherwise  if  such  weapon  as altered, modified, or
  otherwise has an overall length of less than twenty-six inches;  or  (e)
  an assault weapon. 

So in other words, the firearms that are far and away most common in the state of NY-shotguns of "proper" length and rifles lacking the cosmetic features to make them "assault weapons" do not actually meet the statutory definition of "firearms".

Our definition of "Loaded" is equally batty.  If you have in your possession everything you need to make your gun go bang (cartridges,magazine or clip as appropriate, powder/cap/ball etc) even if they are in separate bags, your gun is considered "loaded"  See item 15 in the above link.

From the CNN article  "Erin M. Duggan, director of communications for the district attorney's office...added, "New York state has enacted rational gun laws for one very simple reason: to protect everyone visiting, living, or working in New York."

Check your history, Ms Duggan.  The law under which these people are being persecuted was passed in 1911 under the direction of "Big Tim" Sullivan, and it was passed to protect Tammany Hall thugs from the immigrants they were shaking down.  It was not passed to protect anyone else.

"For example, the 1911 Sullivan Laws were passed to keep guns out of the hands of immigrants (chiefly Italians--in the first three years of the Sullivan Laws, roughly 70 percent of those arrested had Italian surnames). Why single out foreigners? The answer can perhaps be found in the popular press of the time. The New York Tribune, for example, grumbled about pistols found "chiefly in the pockets of ignorant and quarrelsome immigrants of law-breaking propensities," and the New York Times pointed out the affinity of "low-browed foreigners" for handguns."

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Who's mainstream and who's extreme?

There are a number of "arguments" that those who would place greater hurdles between the law abiding and their fundamental civil rights spout to justify their actions. They make claims regarding the meaning and intent of various historical documents, they buy and promote half baked studies with Joyce foundation money and they mangle all manner of statistics: All in the name of depriving you of your civil rights.

One of the most common themes is the notion that more people agree with them, tied in with the notion that there are fewer and fewer gun owners. Allow me to retort.

Actually, the first part of the retort comes from folks like Linoge, Tam, Uncle and anyone else I may be forgetting that expressed this thought first.

It does not matter.

That's correct-it does not matter how many folks think firearms ownership is an antiquated concept best left on the frontier. Fundamental to this line of thinking is the concept of Natural Rights. Natural Rights is the notion that your rights exist because you exist. They are something that belong to all humans as a function of their humanity. (Overview of natural rights) Although the early proponents of this idea couched it in terms of rights endowed by God and therefore were something that could not be taken by men from other men, there is no reason why the agnostic should not view human rights as a condition of humanity. There is no need for a creator to adopt this view. There is no room in this idea for racial, gender or religious bigotry. We all have our fundamental rights until we actively seek to initiate harm to others, at which point these rights become forfeit. In short, your rights exist because you exist, and the votes of the majority have no claim on these rights of the minority. I'm pretty sure that last line is a quote from someone else, but I can't recall who-probably Kevin Baker or Joe Huffman.

From another angle, I refuse to be penalized for another person's misdeeds. I am not responsible for their actions, and you will not restrict my liberty because some other person failed to handle the animated contest with the degree of success we should expect.

There is a wealth of reasons to suppose that more people support an expansion of gun rights than support increased restrictions. I will list a few here.

1) Facebook: The Brady Campaign (formerly known as Handgun Control, Inc) has about 14,000 likes on their Facebook page. Some fraction of these are pro-rights folks who have clicked "Like" to be able to comment on their page. The NRA Facebook page has almost 1.3 MILLION likes. In other words, almost 100 times more people have clicked "Like" on the NRA page than the Brady page.

2) Forums: There are a large number of internet message forums dedicated to firearms and gun rights. From some of the giants like and Calguns (290,000 and 100,000 members respectively) to smaller specialty boards dedicated to particular regions or manufacturers (NYFirearms, Glocktalk, Ruger) there are easily a million folks that read and post on these boards. typically has 4-5 thousand people viewing it at any given time. I have yet to find a gun control forum, let alone one that is in front of four thousand pairs of eyes at any given time.

3) Youtube: There are several documented cases of Brady, CSGV etc posting videos and only getting a few hundred views over the course of weeks, while pro rights folks will post videos that get a few thousand views in a shorter period of time. (Brady Campaign-after two weeks the too many victims video has about 900 views. The Gunnie reply to that video has about 7000 views in the same timeframe ) This time the factor is about 10 times versus 100. Bear in mind that this Brady event was hyped nationally by the largest gun control groups in the nation, groups with dedicated staffs and large (but ever shrinking) piles of cash from the Joyce foundation. The counter protest was something thrown together by a few bloggers that do this in their spare time.

4) Meetings: Every year the NRA holds its annual meeting, with attendance in excess of 60 thousand, while organized protests of that meeting draw about two hundred. See here for instance. And again, that factor of approximately 100. It just keeps popping up...Even in Illinois, a place where citizens fundamental rights are squashed without regard, gunnies manage huge turnouts.

Now, I would not claim that any of these indicators are definitive proof that the advocates for firearms freedom outnumber the advocates for restriction of the same. Taken as a whole, they make a fairly compelling case that we do, in fact, outnumber the Brady types.

There are several indications that the current gap in enthusiasm for further gun control is widening beyond where it already is. FBI NICS checks have been steadily increasing for years, meaning that more names are being checked to see if it's legal for them to posses firearms. Not every check is a purchase, and some checks are for a single purchase of multiple firearms. So, while there is not a one to one and onto mapping of checks to purchases, increasing checks strongly implies increasing purchases. Remembering that guns are rather durable, even a steady rate of NICS checks implies an increasing number of guns in circulation.

Gallup is showing that self reported gun ownership is at its highest level in decades.

Firearms manufacturers are recording record profits.

Ruger is trying the unprecedented feat of selling 1 million guns in1 year.

The anti rights folks will try to claim that these are simply indicators of people that already own guns buying more guns, and not an indicator of more people buying guns. That is nonsense. Yes, some people are increasing their inventory, but there is no way this is simply a stockpiling by current owners. First time/introductory shooting courses are filling up faster than instructors can teach them, CCW applications are skyrocketing and even formerly hostile or ambivalent media outlets are covering firearms positively. TV shows like Top Shot, American Guns and Pawn Stars show guns in a generally positive light and get pretty good ratings. Good ratings means more of them, and that means more people getting exposed to the cultural notion that guns are not de debil.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

What's in a name?

There are a number of contentious issues that face us as a nation, and few generate more heat and sparks than the gun rights/gun control debate.  It is an issue about which I care deeply, and have chosen to blog about to the near exclusion of all other topics.  Living in New York, we are subject to some of the most onerous laws in the nation, and this blog will focus on both national and state level gun control issues.

I've chosen to blog under an assumed name for the simple reason that I worry about what those on the other side of the issue of RKBA will try to do to those around me.  This is no idle concern, as the following examples will show.  

Exhibit A:  Massachusetts gunblogger TJIC
In Massachusetts, permits are required to own any firearms, and a gunblogger had his permits to own firearms revoked based on a blog post.  To be sure I am not defending his post, and quite frankly since the content of the post did not rise to a level of criminality, and did not pose an actual threat to anyone, the post is irrelevant.  The backstory for this event can be found here:

Exhibit B:  Ladd Everitt's attempt to have a gunbloggers child abducted by CPS
Anti-Tango is a gunblogger out in Utah.  He is a former Marine, proud father and reportedly a pretty good dude.  He posted the drama associated with getting his young son to eat something he did not want to, repeatedly sticking it in the child's mouth until he ate it.

Exhibit C:  Jadegold
Jadegold is an internet troll extrodinaire.  Details on Jadegold can be found here:  

Apparently, jadegold has fraudulently called the authorities to accuse pro gun blogger kaveman (blogging at Days of our Trailers) of mail fraud.

Exhibit D:  CSGV gets their twitter feed suspended for intimidation
The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence was using it's twitter feed to link meatspace names with usernames, places of employment etc of prominent gunbloggers in an attempt to stifle debate.  Although CSGV will claim that the individuals involved were abusive and threatening, they have yet to provide any evidence of those outed as being abusive.  As shown above, there are very good reasons to maintain anonymity.  details here: 

The bottom line is this:  Gun control is a mortally wounded animal, but like any animal in its death throes, letting your guard down could be fatal.  They are losing the argument, and it is taking their word view along for the ride.  This makes for some rather unhinged, potentially dangerous folks, folks I'd rather not have force my hand.

The name of the blog itself was inspired by David Codrea, (blogging at The War on Guns ) who has coined and Latinized the phrase "Any chair in a barfight" (CUM ULLA SELLA IN PUGNO TABERNA) to describe the state of mind of of gun rights advocates as we press forward on the issues of gun rights.  It is my aim to contribute to the state of our argument.