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. 


  1. Brilliant fisking! If I may add:

    1. Trying to scare everyone that ANY sale could get you in trouble, the whole point of saying an FFL is required for sales is to chill private transfers. The government hates private transfers which short circuits their backdoor attempts at registration with the Form 4473.
    2. The blatant lie that criminals use trusts to get restricted firearms is laughable. I think there has been exactly one use of a select fire rifle in recent history for a crime. The President lies and lies and lies.
    3. AG Lynch will send a letter to the states to remember them to send in the lists of prohibited persons. Oh my, what a dynamic and wonderful idea. Truly he leads.../end sarcasm.
    4. I think there should be a moratorium on any new gun control laws until the federal government starts to prosecute people who lie on the Form 4473. Just 44 prosecutions shows that background checks are a paper tiger.
    5. Happy mouth noises from the POTUS that we should be smart about our gun laws. What is smart about them? Waiting periods where most people already own multiple firearms? Magazine limits? You just wrote about how they are utterly ineffective in mass shootings. Gun free zones where criminals go on hunting sprees and their only risk is carpal tunnel syndrome in their trigger finger.
    6. Yeah, just what we need...200 more ATF agents where none have been prosecuted for Fast and Furious. The whole group should be disbanded after Waco and F&F and the management in leg irons.
    7. Another governmental entity that should be rolled into the functions of the FBI.
    8. Already a law. Let's make it "double secret probation" illegal. That will make it work.

  2. 9. These idiots do not realize that in ugly domestic violence situations, accusations on both sides of violence are routine. This way the 260 pound felon boyfriend can get his girl friend disarmed by the state so he can come back and kill her with his bare hands knowing she will be disarmed. Alternatively, every sleazy lawyer will automatically have any woman seeking a divorce to falsely claim the husband is dangerous in a spiteful attempt to hurt him. So much wrong with this asinine California law that will be replicated in the demands of the POTUS.
    10. Access to mental health funds which will be used solely to deny rights of Americans, guaranteed.
    11. Social Security bans, just like the no-fly/terror watch list is so outside the due process of law that every judge in America should immediately stay it and then declare it unConstitutional. Nice job, Mr. Constitutional law "professor"...have you ever read the document? /End sarcasm.
    12. So nice to see Soviet style mental health prohibitions. Given the stance in the piece in the New England Journal of Medicine we see liberal doctors playing right along. Remember, Nazi Germany had their evil doctors doing the state's bidding and we have had the syphilis experiment in Tuskegee to show that medical professionals can do great ethical and political wrongs. How about boundary violations doctors? Unless they are highly trained firearms experts they have zero authority to step outside of medicine to pontificate on the subject. Finally, how about Obamacare and HIPPA and the use of EHRs to flag people as gun owners and cross reference with their medications and treatment history to deny them. Bastards!
    13 and 14. My head explodes when people mention "dumb" guns. Blood, sweat, dirt, gloves and so on all interfere with readers leaving the person defenseless. Electronic pairing can be jammed, not work, backdoor deactivations and don't forget battery failures! I do not want to ever hear about this stupid idea until I see my iPhone pair via blue tooth flawlessly 1 million times.
    15. A plea to Congress to play along after he spends his waking hours explaining how he has a phone and a pen and will go around them in contempt of the separation of powers. Congress should tell him he is a lame duck and to go pound sand for the next 12 months.
    16. Again, he insults gun manufacturers and the "gun lobby" and the NRA which is made up of 5 million Americans and expects us to go the extra mile. I think you can guess what my response would be to the POTUS, but in case there is confusion...Mr. President, go forth with thyself and auto-fornicate.

  3. Thanks for the post. People who are really concerned about the safety of themselves and their loved ones may have the MA Gun License so as to make them feel more safer and get legally permitted to use the guns.

  4. Branden, I've marked your post for when I'm not a drooling idiot. Work has been a bear. However, I've already spotted a couple of gems.

    Jacky, the though of a gun license offends me to my core. Even for someone who put up with Cali for far too long. It seems unConstitutional at it's core.


  5. Indeed, when one has to ask for a "permission slip" to exercise a right it is no longer a right, it is a privilege which can be suspended by the State. That makes all firearms licensing unConstitutional.