Saturday, September 3, 2016

Quote of the Day — Erin Palette (August 31, 2016)

On the Facebook page for "Operation Blazing Sword", referring to the kerfuffle regarding (licensed) concealed carry on Texas university campuses — specifically, how the "special snowflakes" no longer "feel safe":
This sort of thinking always astounds me. It essentially boils down to "I felt safe when only people willing to break the law were carrying concealed, but now that anyone who is willing to be photographed, fingerprinted, and background checked can legally carry, I suddenly feel like I'm in danger."

If they felt safe then, they ought to feel safe now. If they don't feel safe now, then maybe they ought to realize that their previous feelings of safety were just a comfortable illusion.
Yeah, I don't understand the mindset, either. This kind of cognitive dissonance can only happen when people let their feelings override their rational thought.

Stay safe.

Friday, August 26, 2016

On Refusing to Argue the Merits of Ideologies

Sebastian points to this post at Ace of Spades, about political (dis)honesty. It's worth a read in its entirety, but I want to zero in on a particular point:
[I]f your arguments in favor of amnesty are as potent as you think they are (and you must think they're potent, because, like Obama, you seem to think the only possible objection is racism and hatred), why not actually share them with the group?

You can't convince people of your position if you refuse to state what it is and the reasons for it.
[emphasis in original]
[blink blink]

That's some pure, distilled truth right there, with far-reaching ramifications on any topic, be it immigration/amnesty, free speech, or gun rights. Someone who won't state their position, let alone argue it:
  • Doesn't trust you enough to share where they really stand.
  • Doesn't trust that you won't overreact and/or get violent if you happen to disagree.
  • Doesn't believe you are worth discussing important issues with, as fellow adults.
  • Doesn't feel they need to earn your support (but still feels entitled to it).
  • At the end of the day, doesn't respect you at all.

Basically, it comes down to politicians telling their constituents, "I believe what I believe, for the reasons I believe it … which I'm choosing not to share right now … or ever. Because I say so*!"

Y'know, as if we're small children.

That's not how mature adults interact with each other. Suffice it to say, that's absolutely not how elected officials should be treating their voters.

Something to consider this election season. Vote accordingly.

* - "… and if you don't agree, you must be a [insert personal insult, probably an '-ist' word]!"

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

"Compromise": I Don't Think It Means What You Think It Means

Over at Bearing Arms, Jenn Jacques has a post up about "compromise" with Democrats on "gun control".

It's mostly a decent article, but … she closes with this:
So if Democrats want a compromise, here it is: follow every single gun law currently on the book. Punish criminals to the fullest extent of the law. Ensure convicted felons serve their entire sentence. Only give second chances when the guilty have served their debt to society.

Do that, then we’ll talk.
[emphasis in original]
While I appreciate the point she's trying to make, my answer to this would be, "No."

I agree that there are already plenty of "gun control" laws on the books, and the government should be enforcing each and every one (otherwise, what's the point of having the law?).

However, the "enforce existing laws" stance is not "compromise". That's just how it should be.

"Compromise" is giving up something to get something in return. If Democrats want to compromise on "gun control" laws, our response should be, "OK, what 'gun control' laws are you offering to repeal in order to get the new laws you want?"

If the answer is "None," then it's not a compromise. If the answer is "None, but maybe we won't go as far as we want," that's not a compromise, either. In neither case are the Democrats required to give up anything.

Give something, get something. That's compromise, and that's where the debate should start.

Sorry, Jenn. You're a bit off the mark on this one.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Orlando Massacre: Radical Islam is at War With Us -- And So Is Our Administration

      It's been two months, and it's happened again: a Muslim with links to the Middle East, radical Islam and terror organizations has killed on American soil. Forty-nine innocents have died, with a like number injured. The Administration, Progressive politicians and the media immediately lept to the attack - not against this new, emerging threat, but at their old, bitter blood enemy: the Nation's gun owners. 

      Politicians and activists sprang before the cameras demanding their usual nonsensical "common sense" nostrums with well practiced ease. They scrupulously avoiding more than a passing reference to the fanaticism at the attack's core. Our feckless leader whined about being criticized for never using the words Radical Islam - while still never actually using the words Radical Islam. However, he's very definitive about the unconstitutional secret gun ban list and reviving the ineffectual Clinton assault rifle law. Hillary danced through the blood to slam her opponent for supposedly "engaging in inflammatory, anti-Muslim rhetoric that made the country less safe." <unqoute> She also waved the bloody shirt at gun owners and the NRA. 

      The media has gleefully hyped the tragedy, incessantly scoring the Orlando attack as the largest gun massacre. They're refusing to provide the context of the Paris, London and Russian attacks. They're also completely ignoring the largest night club massacre, where an immigrant used just a single gallon of gasoline to immolate 87 victims; it just doesn't fit the narrative. And Orlando wasn't even near the toll of the largest American mass killing. 

    The Left's long running hoplophobia is in full flame: They're trying to make sweeping changes based on this one tragic incident that is thankfully extremely rare.  Nonsensical "common sense" solutions, are flying around at the speed of opinions. The left is intent on destroying the Enumerated Rights of hundreds of millions of Americans in the demonstrated ridiculous hope of keeping arms from jihadists who are supported by terrorist organizations able to span the globe. After all, the terrorist in Paris had no trouble getting fully automatic AK-47s for their attacks. 

     It's going to get worse - much worse. The Administration, Progressive and media attacks will escalate. As will the terrorist attacks. We will very likely need our weapons exactly when they are being threatened by the left. Fight the threat that the administration is importing, assisting and enabling. Fight the threat that political correctness will not challenge. Fight the madness that the Progressives will allow destroy us. Ensure that our political leaders still retain enough backbone to first for the Constitution and the citizens. Join the NRA. Fight for our future. Fight. 

    By the way: the largest American mass murder we mention before? That was at Wounded Knee, South Dakota, where 150 men, women and children of the Lakota Indian Nation were murdered by the US Government. The attack came shortly after the Lakota's were disarmed.  Something to think about.  

Quote of the Day — Dom Raso (June 15, 2016)

In a new video on NRA News, in response to the shooting at the "Pulse" nightclub in Orlando, Florida, and the newly re-proposed* "gun control" laws:
Let's run through some of the latest attacks and see how banning so-called "assault weapons" would have turned out. California already bans "assault weapons". That didn't stop San Bernardino. No ban on ARs, or any guns, would have stopped the Boston Marathon bombing. ISIS's well-coordinated attack in France wasn't deterred by the country's strict "gun control" laws. Brussels' gun ban did nothing to stop terrorists from killing.

But every single one of those tragedies ended with police officers carrying AR-15s rushing to the scene as fast as possible.

Hillary's solution to stopping terror attacks is to ban the very gun that >stops terror attacks, and she calls that "common sense".
I only have one nit-pick: The gun does not stop terror attacks, any more than it causes terror attacks. What stops terror attacks is prepared people — police or private citizens — showing up with the skills and/or tools required to make the bad guy(s) stop, using deadly force if necessary (which with terrorists, it often is).

Watch the whole thing:

[Hat tip: John Richardson.]
* - Everything proposed is merely a reiteration of the same ages-old, tired themes. The proponents of "gun control" have no new ideas.
** - As this is a transcript, I'm taking some liberties with "scare quotes". However, the emphasis on certain words or phrases (shown in bold) is detectable in the original.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Obama Continues To Press Pro-Criminal Initiatives

           During these endless months of Obama’s Long Goodbye, our boyish President seems unconcerned with the faltering economy, imploding Obamacare, Islamic terrorism, or an incoherent Foreign Policy, but is focused on fundamentally transforming the criminal’s place in American society.
Obama has long ranted about the number of minorities in prison, blaming the racist society instead of the perpetrators. He blamed the police for the imbalance, and through the DOJ’s regulations created the Ferguson Effect and Fetal Policing. Now, Loretta Lynch’s DOJ is requiring judges to throw away the law when dealing with minority criminals.

His administration is working to force the mainstreaming of felons, allowing them federal jobs, unfettered housing access and pushing toward restored rights, despite the very real risks of these criminals. He’s pardoned hundreds of violent drug dealers and reduce the sentences of hundreds of thousands more. It does appear that criminals are Obama’s latest prized and protected demographic - at the obvious cost to law-abiding Americans.

            In his latest Saturday Weekly Address, Obama continued to champion the felons. Delivered in his usual condescending tone, da Prez lectured the nation on the unfairness of criminal justice system and again pushed the need to radically reform American society. As is his wont, he threw out several unsupported claims, misrepresented statistics, all leavened by a smattering of  bald-faced lies. A prime example is his declaration that  “We know that simply locking people up doesn’t make communities safer.” We certainly do NOT know that. His statement is shown to be a lie by decades of experience with targeted enforcement, mandated sentencing, three-strikes laws, and . It was a tour-de-force of every misguided policy from this administration.

            As in all of Obama policies, the question is “Why?” It’s easy to see the racialist motive: the Democrat minority coalition is showing some deep fractures, and the long solid black and Latino vote is showing signs of straying. More insidious are the efforts to radically remake American society by undermining as many institutions as possible. Regardless, these policies will likely remake America in the image of Chicago, New York, Baltimore, Philadelphia and San Francisco where Progressive policies have already resulted in a crime riddled environment.  And if Obama and Hillary can disarm the nation as they want, our country could be a very dangerous place indeed.  

          Stay armed - stay vigilant - stay capable. Now more than ever.        

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Quote of the Day — J. Kb (April 21, 2016)

Kicking the "I'm a gun owner but..." fallacy straight to the curb over at Gun Free Zone:
Let me make one thing clear. If you are anti gun, but you try to make yourself look like a moderate by talking about daddy’s trap gun or grandpa’s squirrel rifle and that you are not scared of guns because you shot a .22 at pop cans when you were a kid; that is the anti gun equivalent of saying you are not a racist because you have one black friend, and you’re not scared of black people because your black friend is a CPA from the suburbs. Guess what? You’re still anti gun… and a racist.
I can't rightly argue with that.

Stay safe.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Obama's Pro-Crime Initiatives

Same To You, Barry
    In the past weeks, the Obama administration has released a series of actions that are pro-criminal and racist to their core. Largely avoided by the media because of the third-rail nature of racial politics, these initiatives certainly affect the safety of the Nation’s law-abiding.  

    First, Obama commuted the sentences of another 61 criminals. Most were involved in distribution of large amounts of illegal drugs, but one in five were also sentenced in part for gun crimes. Many others had their gun crimes dismissed as part of the plea deals that put them in prison. Those 61 join another 187 criminals who have benefited from Obama’s hypocritical approach to crime, where he is soft on the actual criminals, while being as hard as he can on the law-abiding gun owners.     

     Then, Obama’s Department of Housing and Urban Development issued a decree saying refusing to rent based on a criminal record is a form of racial discrimination. The Fair Housing Act is silent on criminals, but because Blacks and Latinos are arrested at a significantly higher rate than whites, HUD has stretched the law so landlords can no longer use a criminal record to screen applicants. The fact that a criminal record is often a predictor of other undesirable traits must be ignored according to the Federal bureaucracy. Landlords and mortgage providers who violate the administrative decree could face fines in the millions of dollars, depending on the scope of the alleged violations.

 Most troubling is the Obama’s Department of Justice's nine-page letter to judges around the United States, warning them to limit prosecution of criminals, particularly those of minority status, or risk the loss of federal funding. Municipalities failing to toe the line could see the same type of federal investigations that Ferguson, Missouri endured after the police shooting of black teen Michael Brown. The fact that those shootings were largely found to have been justified, and the municipalities targeted are mostly minority controlled is ignored by the Obama administration.  

Obama’s soft on crime approach directly affects the fabric of American society. It goes against the rule of law andthe best practices of law enforcement. It reverses the Broken Window policing shown to be so effective. Critically, it extends the hands-off “Ferguson Effect” that is responsible for so many inner city deaths in St Louis, Baltimore, Cleveland, LA and Chicago. Now, the entire nation is subject to the same enforced chaos. The eventual results are easily predictable.

We have always suggested that our readers should be prepared to defend their lives, for when the government can not -- or deliberately will not - defend them.

           Stay armed, stay vigilant, stay capable. Now, more than ever.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Quote of the Day — Fred Reed (March 17, 2016)

From his article, Betting on Gray Sludge: What Fun:
If white Southerners genitally mutilated their daughters, practiced honor killing, and didn’t allow their girls to go to school, the Islamophiles would erupt in fury. They overlook these practices in Moslems because they are using Moslems as a means of punishing people they loathe , such as white Southerners.
That's about the state of things currently. The Social Justice Warriors unite under a pretended "cause", but in truth just use the "cause" as an excuse to dispense hate (and sometimes violence) on their neighbors whom they despise for no articulable reason.

There's a lot of truth in the article. I encourage you to RTWT.

Stay safe.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Quote of the Day — George S. Patton (WWII, date unknown)

The nigh-legendary general, speaking words that still have relevance today:
Sure, we want to go home. We want this war over with. The quickest way to get it over with is to go get the b*stards who started it. The quicker they are whipped, the quicker we can go home. The shortest way home is through Berlin and Tokyo.
I don't know about all of you, but I'm ready for this "silly season" election to be over. I'm ready for the anti-freedom groups (or their benefactors) to realize it's a lost cause, cut their losses, and throw in the towel. I'm ready for our American values and way of life and our God-given rights to be safe from all enemies, foreign and domestic.

However, the quickest way do get it over with is to finish our business*. Then, and only then, we can go home.

Stay safe.

[Hat tip: John Hawkins at Townhall: The 25 Manliest Quotes by Americans. I may pull a few more quotes from this one!]
* - Yes, I know for some of our opponents it will never be finished; some of them will never give up. I can dream, can't I?

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Quote of the Day — Garry Kasparov (March 1, 2016)

Garry Kasparov, 2007
(source: Wikipedia)

As seen on the chess giant's Book of Face:
I'm enjoying the irony of American Sanders supporters lecturing me, a former Soviet citizen, on the glories of Socialism and what it really means! Socialism sounds great in speech soundbites and on Facebook, but please keep it there. In practice, it corrodes not only the economy but the human spirit itself, and the ambition and achievement that made modern capitalism possible and brought billions of people out of poverty. Talking about Socialism is a huge luxury, a luxury that was paid for by the successes of capitalism. Income inequality is a huge problem, absolutely. But the idea that the solution is more government, more regulation, more debt, and less risk is dangerously absurd.
I have nothing to add to that.

Fortunately, Mr. Kasparov has more, writing a follow-up in The Daily Beast. Here's a (very) small taste:
A society that relies too heavily on redistributing wealth eventually runs out of wealth to redistribute. The historical record is clear. It’s capitalism that brought billions of people out of poverty in the 20th century. It’s socialism that enslaved them and impoverished them. […] Once you give power to the government it is nearly impossible to get it back, and it will be used in ways you cannot expect.
Stay safe.

[Hat tip: Legal Insurrection]

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Gun Podcaster Needs Your Help!

Paul Lathrop, co-host of The Polite Society Podcast, has been accused of assault with a firearm stemming from a dispute at a gas station. I know Paul, and I venture to say anyone who does know him will tell you the same thing: he's a knowledgeable fellow who doesn't go waving a gun around. I'm convinced that the accusation is false and will be shown so in court. In the meantime, though, he needs money to pay for a lawyer to defend against this trumped-up charge!

Please click on the link and donate whatever you can. It's going for a great cause to help one of our own.

From the Facedbook

Friday, February 5, 2016

Gov McAwful Blinks!
         Virginia’s governor was forced to rapidly back away from the firestorm caused by his attorney general’s elimination of CCW reciprocity with 25 other states. The ban barely lasted a month before being swept away by a groundswell of pro-rights anger from the state and the nation. Governor Terry McAuliffe, a Clinton apparatchik, agreed to Virginia Republican’s demands for nearly universal reciprocity, significantly increasing the number of states accorded reciprocity. In return, the governor got some very minor, face-saving gun-control concessions; enabling him to claim some semblance of victory despite the stinging defeat.

         Anti-gun groups were not pleased. The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence immediately damned McAuliffe and his concessions. On their Facebook page, the rabidly anti-gun group painted  McAuliffe as caving in to the NRA. Knuckling under, when in the past when he had bragged about his administration’s aggressive new approach to confronting the National Rifle Association.

Don’t you just love it when the Progressives eat their own? 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Facebook Bans Firearm, Parts and Ammuntion Sale Posts - A Warning

          Facebook, the world’s largest social media website, has moved against America’s legal gun owners.  In a surprise announcement, Facebook and Instagram immediately banned posts about guns offered for sale between private parties. The ban extended to gun parts and ammunition. Offers that were all completely legal. There was no explanation of what prompted the Facebook policy change, but Obama has long railed against the legal private sales of firearms via the Interwebs; objecting to the lack of a FBI background check. White House spokesperson Josh Earnest applauded Facebook’s action, but smugly would not say if Facebook's decision was the result of any specific request from the administration.

         The impact has been immediate, broad and severe. Facebook started pulling down gun sales posts instantly. Many gun or gun-rights oriented groups were banned outright, removed for what Facebook called violations of its terms of service. Facebook has unjustly equated firearms with marijuana, pharmaceuticals and illegal drugs and groups that are hateful, threatening or obscene. Members of the Bradys, Bloomberg’s Demanding Mommies and Mayors Against Illegal Guns, as well as many so-called Social Justice Warriors swarmed Facebook, reporting anything remotely gun related. Facebook’s notorious “Ban first - ask questions later” policy resulted in the wholesale elimination of a large swath of gun groups, many with no connection to gun sales.

         Facebook gun group administrators fought back by tightening their rules, eliminating questionable posts, refusing new members and changing the groups names and keywords to limit notice by the SJWs. Often, those efforts were not enough. Many gun groups are going elsewhere, to private websites, forums and friendlier social media sites like GunDistrict,  Myspace and MeWe. This fragmentation has already caused a negative impact to the effectiveness of the gun culture.

         It should be noted that as a private company, Facebook has every right to regulate its business as it desires. Should they be limiting free speech about a lawful, enumerated right is an entirely different question. However, any government coercion aimed at chilling lawful conduct is at best unethical and certainly an abusive use of executive power. We must be on our guard.

         This was a warning. Gun Culture 2.0 is in many ways a child of Al Gore’s internet. The new ability to find one another, organize and communicate significantly changed the game from when communication was largely controlled by a hostile mass-media. To illustrate: gun rights advocates have repeatedly frustrated the current administration by quickly distributing information and coordinating a response to their excesses. However, the new capabilities rely on an internet largely controlled by the left-leaning elite of Silicon Valley. Facebook CEO and majority stockholder Jeff Zuckerberg, recently anointed as the fourth richest man in the world, could indulge a whim or pressure and ban every mention of firearms, self-defense or rights on his site. Other social media sites could follow suit, effectively eliminating most firearm and rights related communication. The remaining sites and forums would also be at risk where the government controls the internet Off Switch and the UN has been given control of what goes on the world wide web. It could happen tomorrow. It’s in our best interest to begin to develop our own secure, gun and free speech rights friendly websites and communication channels.

     We have been warned. 

Monday, February 1, 2016

Herschel Investigates the Malheur County "Standoff"

… and reveals an "interesting" coalition of players leading up to the shooting death of Robert "LaVoy" Finicum.

Full post at The Captain's Journal: Why Did Robert ‘LaVoy’ Finicum Have To Die? The Connection Between Malheur, Putin, The Clinton Foundation, And Big Money

Thought-provoking, to say the least.

Stay safe.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Quote(s) of the Day — Oregon Gov. Kate Brown (January 20, 2016)

After the recent events near Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, something has been tickling the back of my mind about it, and I finally placed my finger on it.

On January 20, 2016, six days before the deadly "traffic stop", Oregon Governor Kate Brown held a press conference and wrote a couple letters. She had a few things to say.

Via OPR:
"Federal authorities must move quickly to end the occupation and hold all of the wrongdoers accountable," Brown said.

"This spectacle of lawlessness must end."
Also via OPR, in a letter to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch and FBI Director James Comey [PDF warning]:
[F]or the citizens of Harney County and indeed all Oregonians, I must insist on a swift resolution to this matter. Efforts to negotiate have not been successful, and now it is unclear what steps, if any, federal authorities might take to bring this untenable situation to an end and restore normalcy to this community.

I request on behalf of my fellow Oregonians that you instruct your agencies to end the unlawful occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge as safely and quickly as possible.
[emphasis added]
While I won't go so far as to claim that the shooting death of any of the protesters occurred at the behest of Our Honorable Governor, I will point out that the Feds certainly did end the "spectacle of lawlessness", and they certainly are "end[ing] the unlawful occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge as safely [for some] and quickly as possible". The claim can be made that they took the request and ran with it.

I hope she's satisfied.

Stay safe.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

BREAKING: Shots Fired Near Malheur County Refuge

One dead, one wounded in "traffic stop" confrontation with FBI and State Police.

I've not reported on the "standoff" at the Malheur County Wildlife Refuge, mostly because there's so much disinformation flying about that it's difficult to tell what's what. For the record, I'm not 100% convinced that the Hammonds are innocent victims of federal overreach (they are victims of overreach, but not totally innocent), nor am I convinced the "militia" — including Ammon and Ryan Bundy — "occupying" a federal facility are completely on the up-and-up. I'm also not convinced the federal agents are acting in good faith to prevent another Ruby Ridge or Waco.

In short, I believe this story is far more complex that anyone realizes, and nobody has all the facts.

So when I report that shots were fired, with one "militia" member killed and one other wounded — and several more arrested — during a "traffic stop" conducted by FBI agents, I urge everyone involved or following along, in the strongest possible terms, not to jump to conclusions until we have actual, verifiable facts. At this point it's not at all clear who fired first — or if the "militia" members even fired at all.

That information will be crucial in the days to come.

Here's what's being reported so far:

Via KATU News: Several of the "militia" leaders — including Ammon Bundy, LaVoy Finicum, Ryan Bundy, Brian Cavalier, Shawna Cox and Ryan W. Payne — were reportedly on their way to a community meeting in John Day (70 miles north of Burns) when they were pulled over on Highway 395 by FBI agents and Oregon State Troopers, shortly before 4:30 pm. During the stop, shots were fired (more on this in a moment), killing LaVoy Finicum. Ryan Bundy was wounded. The men were then placed under arrest (in Ryan Bundy's case, after hospital treatment).

Reports vary on the circumstances precipitating the "shoot-out", and run the gamut from militia members complying with all orders but being shot at anyway to militia members not complying and threatening agents who then took appropriate action.

Via OregonLive:
Nevada Assemblywoman Michele Fiore, a vocal supporter of the Bundy family, said that Ammon Bundy told his wife that Finicum had been cooperating with police and had his hands up. Then, Fiore said, Bundy said he watched police shoot Finicum three times.

But sources told The Oregonian/OregonLive that Finicum and Ryan Bundy disobeyed orders to surrender and resisted arrest. Authorities have not detailed what happened.
Again, I can't stress enough that we don't have enough facts to draw conclusions.

In the meantime, let's offer our thoughts and prayers to LaVoy Finicum's friends and family (and he had a very large family). He will, I'm sure, be missed.

For the rest of us, I have the sinking feeling this is just the beginning. Stay aware, stay informed, and above all, stay safe.

Correction: Original post reported the confrontation occurring shortly after 8 pm. That was incorrect, reflecting the time the linked OregonLive article updated. The confrontation actually occurred shortly before 4:30 pm. This post has been updated.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Recent Happenings and Stuff

I tell you, you step out for a while to deal with mundane things like work, family, and holidays (OK, some of those aren't so mundane), and you miss out on sharing some important happenings.

This won't qualify as a "tab-clearing", but I do have a couple things to report and share.

First, there are a couple legislative items in the upcoming "short session" in Oregon. From OFF, we have two anti-gun bills proposed:
  • LC 250 [PDF warning], introduced as a "committee bill" (so nobody's name is on it, though it's suspected perennial anti-gunner Floyd Prozanski wrote it), allows certain persons to call the Oregon State Police Firearms Unit to report a "mental health crisis", causing a 30-day hold on the ability to purchase a firearm. While it's not a full-on "gun violence restraining order", a la California (wherein the police actually seize any guns currently owned), the list of acceptable reporters is pretty long and the conditions pretty loose, with civil immunity for reporters acting "in good faith" and misdemeanor penalties for knowingly making false reports. The identities of such reporters are not released, though, so good luck proving bad faith (or even raising the accusation).
  • LC 263 [now HB 4147 — ed.] [PDF warning], "Prohibits transfer of firearm by dealer or private party if Department of State Police is unable to determine whether recipient is qualified to receive firearm." Translation: No more "default proceeds". If you receive a "delay" during a firearm transfer, there's no transfer until the "delay" is definitively resolved.
Both bills, naturally, invoke the "emergency" clause, so they go into effect immediately. Oregon voters won't be allowed to fix or repeal them for at least two years.

Oregon gun owners, it's time to take action. Call, write, e-mail, visit in person, whatever you can do to help stop these bills.

In other news, Mike Vanderboegh, gun rights and liberty activist, citizen journalist, unofficial founder of the III% movement, and proprietor of the Sipsey Street Irregulars blog, is not long of this earth. His friends are asking that people who receive value from his work over the years (and there has been a lot of work, over a lot of years — among other things, "Operation Fast & Furious" would still be unknown if not for him) make a "gratitude offering" to help him get his final affairs in order and see that his wife, Rosey, is taken care of. More information from David Codrea here. They are also organizing work parties to help get his home and yard in working order, so if you have skills, tools, or even just a good work ethic, and are in the Pinson, Alabama, area, see if you can drop them a line and help out.

This last is not gun-related, or even news, but this particular track has been on my heart quite a bit lately. Maybe our dear readers will find inspiration and/or enjoyment in it as well. I could not for the life of me find an "official" video, but I actually like the imagery in this lyric version:

As always, stay safe.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Philly Brand Terrorism -- and Leadership

            A Philadelphia police officer was ambushed last Thursday night; city official’s reactions were as immediate as they were predictable.
            Officer Jesse Hartnett was sitting in his police cruiser when a young black man in Arab-style clothing walked at him from across the street.  Screaming Allahu Akbar!, the man fired thirteen rounds from a pistol, the last few from within the cruiser’s window. Hartnett was hit three times in his left arm. Bleeding heavily, he was able to chase after his assassin and wound him in the rear, helping make his arrest a certainty. The tenacious officer was admitted to the hospital in critical but stable condition and may have permanent nerve damage in the arm, but he will survive.

            Details started emerging quickly. The failed executioner confessed, saying he acted in the name of Islam. He told detectives "I follow Allah. I pledge my allegiance to the Islamic State, and that's why I did what I did." He shot because he believed the police defend laws that are contrary to the Koran. The attacker had several arrests and a prior felony conviction for assault with a firearm, but was paroled immediately after sentencing. He visited the Middle East several times, without appearing on a watch list. The terrorist turned evasive when asked about any others participating in the crime. Lastly, the weapon used was a police sidearm, stolen from another officer back in 2013.  

Small Man In Big Position
The investigation had barely started when Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney jumped before the news cameras.  With city and police officials staged behind him as props, Kenney stated, “In no way, shape, or form does anyone in this room believe that Islam, or the teaching of Islam, has anything to do with [the shooting of Officer Hartnett]. That claim is absolutely unsupported by what was known then or even now; and it’s likely to be just the opposite. The mayor then further bloviated; “There are too many guns on our streets and I think our national government needs to do something about that.” Even though the gun was actually stolen from the police and used by a terrorist.

          It seems like whatever the problem, the answer is always gun control. 

Friday, January 15, 2016

Analysis of Obama's Anti-gun Executive Actions

Tears of a Clown
              As his administration stumbles into its last year, Obama faces a faltering economy, the slow motion train wreck of Obamacare, a growing threat of Jihadi terrorism, his serial failures in Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Libya and Syria, a resurgent Russia, Chinese hegemony, a nuclear North Korea, and racial tensions at home, to name just a few. Facing all those critical issues, Obama inexplicably chose to focus on his despised bitter-clingers, the nation’s law-abiding gun owners.  

     In Tuesday’s address to the nation, Obama spent 33 minutes in an emotion driven, weepy, deeply narcissistic performance where he mentioned himself 76 times. He proposed a series of anti-gun actions his bureaucracy could take, ignoring the Constitutional process of legislation. It was immediately obvious that NONE of these initiatives could have prevented the mass-killings that drew his crocodile tears. This divisive president once again tried to demonize the gun-lobby, the NRA and the millions of law-abiding gun owners. 

     The White House provided a fact sheet of Obama’s executive actions.  Using that press release along with the transcript of Obama’s address, we’ve analyzed Obama’s thrusts. It should be noted that we are working with Obama’s carefully parsed words. It is a virtual certainty that the administration will twist the words to suit their own ends, and we must opine with that in mind. All of us will have to keep an eye on these initiatives and push back strongly were our Constitutional Rights are threatened. 

1.    Tighten Background Checks

Obama: The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) is making clear that it doesn’t matter where you conduct your business—from a store, at gun shows, or over the Internet: If you’re in the business of selling firearms, you must get a license and conduct background checks.

Analysis: Obama starts with more than a little bit of feldercarb. If you are in the business of selling guns, as defined by the law, you have a Federal Firearms License (FFL) and every gun you sell, be it offered for sale in a storefront, gun show, or internet, goes through a FBI background check. Period. End of story. There is no gun show loophole. 

    The threat in this executive action is a change of the definition, expanding just who is in the business of selling guns. Is it a guy supplementing his income with a few well considered purchases and sales, a hobbyist buying new guns and selling the old ones, a gun owner liquidating part of his collection to pay the mortgage, or a widow selling her late husband’s extensive collection?  They all could find themselves running afoul of this expanded regulation. In his refusal to provide concrete definition of a gun business, we believe Obama seeks to add even more confusion and uncertainty into the process, demonizing the lawful sale of assets.  We do know the creep selling guns out of the trunk of his car will not be affected in the slightest.

2.    Restrict Trusts and Corporations in the Authorization of Class III purchases.

ATF is finalizing a rule to require background checks for people trying to buy some of the most dangerous weapons and other items through a trust, corporation, or other legal entity.

     In an unproven allegation, Obama stated that violent criminals are trying to buy some of the most the most dangerous firearms by hiding behind trusts and corporations. This cannot be supported by any data. To Obama, the fact that no criminals are queueing up with their 200 dollars to buy short barreled rifles, shotguns or a suppressor is beside the point.  Obama was able to mouth the “most dangerous weapons” description. 

     This change to the regulations has been tried before. Public outrage caused the proposed regulation to be withdrawn.  

3.    Obtain Complete Criminal History From the States

Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch has sent a letter to States highlighting the importance of receiving complete criminal history.

If this was an issue, why has it not been addressed in the prior seven years?

4.    Make the Background Check System More Efficient

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is overhauling the background check system to make it more effective and efficient. The envisioned improvements include processing background checks 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and improving notification of local authorities when certain prohibited persons unlawfully attempt to buy a gun. The FBI will hire more than 230 additional examiners and other staff to help process these background checks.

     In one of our staff’s experience, almost every one of the electronic background checks is already completed in less than 30 seconds.  It’s difficult to believe that could be significantly improved, especially if you are going to throw more government at it. It already seems to be running 24 hours a day, including government holidays. 

     This may actually make it easier on the smaller FFLs who use the telephone call in method of FBI verification. Especially since the Top Gun Salesman of All Time keeps driving the public to buy more and more guns.

    And congratulations on the notifications to local authorities when there is an unlawful attempt to buy a gun, but why wasn’t this being aggressively pursued already?  Only 44 persons were prosecuted in a prior year. What the hell has your administration been doing Mr. President?

5.    Focus on Smart and Effective Enforcement of Gun Laws

The Attorney General convened a call with U.S. Attorneys around the country to direct federal prosecutors to continue to focus on smart and effective enforcement of our gun laws.

We will soon see the awesome power of the telecom.  Or not.  Under Obama, gun prosecutions have fallen dramatically.

6.    200 More ATF Agents and Investigators

The President’s FY2017 budget will include funding for 200 new ATF agents and investigators to help enforce our gun laws.

    That’s roughly $70 million per year for new agents. In a year that that includes only the last 4 months of the Obama’s administration. We’re going to bet that the House round-files Obama’s suggestion during the budgeting process. 

7.    Already Established Internet Investigation Center and National Integrated Ballist Integrated Information Network (NIBIIN)

ATF has established an Internet Investigation Center to track illegal online firearms trafficking and is dedicating $4 million and additional personnel to enhance the National Integrated Ballistics Information Network.

     IIC and NIBIIN (ick and nibbin’) Those acronyms should say it all. If the bureaucrats don’t have a cool sounding acronym, nobody’s going to pay much attention.  And the few millions authorized won’t even start to fund an effective program in the bloated Federal government. 

8.    Guns Lost and Stolen From FFLs

ATF is finalizing a rule to ensure that dealers who ship firearms notify law enforcement if their guns are lost or stolen.

     The requirement to report firearms lost or stolen in Transit has been an ATF rule for decades. What this order will probably do is create an immediate notification requirement as well as demanding more frequent audits of the FFL’s inventories. These additional burdens will increase costs to the FFLs and their customers, as well as the risks of criminal prosecution for failing the regulations. The BATFE is already infamous for its “Death by a Thousand Cuts” management style. This revision will certainly not help.

9.    Renew Domestic Violence Outreach Efforts

The Attorney General issued a memo encouraging every U.S. Attorney’s Office to renew domestic violence outreach efforts.

     No real way to tell what this means. However, Federal and State governments have been increasing focusing on pre-crime gun rights restrictions. As in trend-setting California, the Feds would like to eliminate gun rights from anyone who could possibly be considered a threat, based on an allegation, without due process or appeal. Welcome to the world of Minority Report.   

10.  Increase Access to Mental Health Care

The Administration is proposing a new $500 million investment to increase access to mental health care.

     This increase is certainly needed and welcome. However, a half a billion won’t make a dent in the mental health needs of Obama, his administration, and the Federal bureaucracy.

     Snark aside, using mental health concerns, which may be biased, overblown or temporary to permanently eliminating 2nd Amendment rights, is an escalating threat.

11. Social Security Issues Eliminating Firearm Rights

The Social Security Administration has indicated that it will begin the rulemaking process to include information in the background check system about beneficiaries who are prohibited from possessing a firearm for mental health reasons.

     This order would allow the Social Security Administration to eliminate firearm rights based on an arbitrary determination of incompetence. A recipient designating another person as having financial responsibility would trigger this notification. Many of our nation’s elderly would be stripped of their firearms just when they are at their most vulnerable. All without due process or the ability to challenge. 

     Obama’s Social Security Administration has already tried this dodge. Public and political outrage forced them to quickly withdraw the proposed rule. This rule should certainly be withdrawn again.  The similar Veteran Administration regulation should also be eliminated. The bureaucratic, unchallengeable, adjudicated elimination of rights should not be allowed to stand.

12. Doctor’s To Report Mental Health Issues to the FBI

The Department of Health and Human Services is finalizing a rule to remove unnecessary legal barriers preventing States from reporting relevant information about people prohibited from possessing a gun for specific mental health reasons.

     This is perhaps the most chilling of all of Obama’s proposals: Doctors would be required to report their suspicions of mental health issues to the FBI. Their patient would then lose his or her 2nd Amendment Rights – forever. With little or no ability to appeal or the right to due process. 

     The executive order has a host of legal, ethical and professional problems. It intrudes on the formally protected Doctor–Patient relationship and confidentially. MDs without the specialized psychiatric training would be forced to make a snap mental health judgements. As doctors under Obamacare are now de-facto employees of the government, they could be coerced to report on the slightest of suspicions, or even be given quotas to meet.  As the doctor’s license, practice, insurance and career could be put in jeopardy if a patient is not reported as mentally ill, they will be incentivized to over-report. Worst of all, because of Big Brother’s presence in the treatment rooms and the draconian gun seizures, some people will hesitate to get the treatment they need.          
     It should be noted that doctors kill 120,000 people each year through errors or malpractice.  That’s more than an order of magnitude more than murders with guns.  Should we actually be banning doctors?  

13.  Conduct or Sponsor Research into Gun Safety Technology

The President has directed the Departments of Defense, Justice, and Homeland Security to conduct or sponsor research into gun safety technology.

The Progressive fantasy of smart-gun technology rears its ugly head again. Obama even compared this fanciful technology to the fingerprint readers on smart phones.  Considering that phones are treated a lot more gently than guns – and the fingerprint readers don’t work all that well – that is a very poor comparison. 

And given that the government will likely require a disabling backdoor to be installed in the software, this is an extremely blatant assault on the 2nd Amendment. This proposal could only come from someone used to being protected by guards with hair triggers.   

14. Regular reviews of Smart Gun technology

The President has also directed the departments to review the availability of smart gun technology on a regular basis, and to explore potential ways to further its use and development to more broadly improve gun safety.

     In his address, Obama also called for tracking devices to be placed in guns.  Hundreds of people, including two American law-enforcement agents, could be alive if those devices only been added to the guns Obama and Eric Holder sold to the Mexican drug cartels. Giving the government the ability to determine where the guns are – well, that couldn’t possibly go wrong… right? 

   Obama also called for child resistant triggers. This laughable goal is one more indication of just how far the man’s thinking differs from average American and the Founding Fathers. He certainly would not want child resistant triggers on the guns that protect him.

15. Congress Called to Support the President’s Demands

Congress should support the President’s request for resources for 200 new ATF agents and investigators to help enforce our gun laws, as well as a new $500 million investment to address mental health issues.

     Hopefully, the Congress will be in no mood to support these dangerous fantasies.

16. Urge manufacturers, retailers, and other private-sector leaders to explore what more they can do.

Because we all must do our part to keep our communities safe, the Administration is also calling on States and local governments to do all they can to keep guns out of the wrong hands and reduce gun violence. It is also calling on private-sector leaders to follow the lead of other businesses that have taken voluntary steps to make it harder for dangerous individuals to get their hands on a gun. In the coming weeks, the Administration will engage with manufacturers, retailers, and other private-sector leaders to explore what more they can do.

     This last pronouncement is a reminder of the power of the government’s iron fist in the velvet glove. The Obama administration has been very active in using the coercive power of the government to affect their goals. Actions like Operation Choke Point have hampered lawful activities that the administration found objectionable. This type of extra-legal coercion should be called out and resisted.   

By our count, that’s 16 anti-gun initiatives. None of them would address the problem of terrorism the homeland soil, none of them would have prevented the mass killings of the past, none of them would actually reduce crime. All of them demonize the law-abiding gun owners who are more of the solution than part of the problem. Obama should be called out for his feckless, divisive assault on the Constitutional rights of America’s citizens.  Mr President, we demand you focus on the issue that actually threatening this nation, and stop trying to eliminate the Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms.