i despise gun "buy-backs"

Without even addressing the patent idiocy of "buying back" something you never really owned to begin with, I absolutely hate gun "buy-backs". Why? Gos-se like this:

strikerbuyback

That one image, borrowed from KOMONews.com’s appropriately anti-firearms news article, adequately sums up all of my reasons for hating this bit of governmental idiocy.

First, take a look at the right end of the table – those three large drum magazines and folding stocks? This quote from the news article confirms my fears:

The return count was nearly evenly split between pistols and rifles, and among the weapons turned in were three "street sweepers" — shotguns that include a high capacity magazine capable of holding twelve 12-gauge shotgun shells — and a military surface-to-air missile launcher.

The Cobray Street Sweeper is the American-made version of the Armsel Striker; both are drum-fed 12-gauge shotguns, both are semi-automatic, both are no longer made/imported, and both are regulated Destructive Devices and thus controlled by the National Firearms Act.

The last price I saw for a nearly-mint-condition Street Sweeper was somewhere in the $1300 range, in addition to the $200 tax stamp and 6-9 month wait for the BATFE to decide you can own the firearm.

Yes, ~$4000 of gun hardware just got "sold back" to the Seattle Police Department for a measly $300 in gift cards. Good Lord.

Unfortunately, the problem goes deeper than that, though. As I said, these firearms are no longer made, and I have every reason to believe that SPD will be destroying the firearms they "bought back", which will take another three Strikers/Sweepers out of an increasingly small national inventory. In other words, history is literally being destroyed by fetishistic morons.

Then, consider the insanity of selling a ~$1300 firearm for $100 in gift cards. Either the SPD just took advantage of someone who genuinely had no idea what they had in their possession (a despicable act in and of itself), or they just aided and abetted a criminal disposing of evidence, "no questions asked". Last I checked, a violation of the NFA (such as owning a Street Sweeper without the appropriate tax stamp and paperwork to go with it) is punishable by up to ten years in prison and possibly $10,000 to $250,000 in fines… but I can guarandamntee you the Seattle Police Department did not ask for the ownership/transfer documents when they took these guns.

What a wonderful way for criminals to dispose of inconvenient evidence and get away scott-free.

But even the Street Sweepers are just the tip of the iceberg – consider KOMO News losing their collective gos-se over the "military surface-to-air missile launcher". I will admit to not being as "up" on my MANPADS as I possibly should be, but I will grant the possibility that that launcher could be for a FIM-92 Stinger system; at the very least, it is some sort of shoulder-fired missile/rocket launcher.

So what?

No, you heard me right: so what? Without the actual rocket/missile that goes in that launcher – a missile that is 100% impossible for private citizens to procure through legal channels – it is nothing more than a rather expensive fiberglass or metal tube with some interesting electronics and probably very dead batteries hanging off of it. The worst someone can do with that thing is beat someone to death with it, and I dare say there are better tools for that particular job.

But, now, the Seattle Police Department can hold up this harmless tube on their news broadcasts, and proudly proclaim that they took this missile launcher of the streets of their fair city, thereby ensuring the safety of all travelers at SEATAC and beyond. In other words, they are going to further mislead the residents of the Pacific Northwet.

Oh, and by the way, you can buy rocket launcher tubes, legally, even in once-Great Britain. I have no idea if this particular one was strictly legal, but, for God’s sake, it is just a hollow tube – what are you going to do, ban those?

Now look at the rest of the "junk on the bunk" picture – in front, we have a folding-stock 10/22, a Tapco-ized SKS, something I want to say is another SKS but I have no idea, an AK-pattern rifle, a Sten gun (!), the evil noob toob, another SKS, some kind of bolt-action rifle, and an AR-15 A1. Assuming they are all in working condition, every last one of those is worth more than $100, with the A1 potentially pulling $2,000+ (depending on make and date of manufacture) and the Sten gun (if it is a real Sten gun) being somewhere in the $7,000 range (but still $500-$1000 if it is only a semi-auto knock-off). Did the people "turning in" these guns have a bloody clue of their actual value? Probably not. Instead, they were probably mislead by "gun control" fetishists, the media, and even the Seattle Police Department itself into thinking their particular hand-me-down, garage shelf find, or leftover from their dead spouse was, in some way, "evil", and it was their duty to "get rid of it".

I am firmly of the opinion that people should be free to do with their property what they will, but when they genuinely have no idea what they have, a public servant exploiting that ignorance and giving them $100 for a $7000 item is just disgusting.

Which brings us to yet another aspect of this disaster – with just those materials displayed on or leaning against the table, and assuming I identified them properly, the Seattle Police Department could make somewhere in the neighborhood of $15,000 – $20,000. But they are not going to. No, they are going to drag these firearms – some of them literally irreplaceable pieces of history – to a smelter and destroy them. Why? Because the police department "wants them off the street".

Jesus wept. If you want them off the gorramed street, give them to me – I will not only keep them off any and all streets, I will at least recognize them for what they are, rather than demonizing them as "evil" deodands to be destroyed due to the misuse or negligence of their owners.

Even beyond that, though, if I had somehow destroyed $20,000 of the United States Navy’s property when I was active duty, I would still be cooling my heels in Leavenworth even to today. These public servants, however, get special dispensation because they idiotically claim this is helping "public safety" or whatever the going lie is these days.

Hell with that.

Think of how many original 1911s from World War 2 were brought back, shoved in a sock drawer somewhere, and then summarily destroyed when Granny found it after Pops died and wanted nothing to do with it. Think of the untold millions of dollars of machined aluminum, steel, iron, and whatever else that has been unnecessarily crushed, sliced, slagged, or otherwise completely and totally destroyed. Think of the irreplaceable pieces of history that belong in the ownership of someone who will actually look after them, but are instead reduced to waste metal (thankfully, that particular one was saved).

Yes, as an engineer, an American citizen, and a human being, I am pissed off at the very concept gun "buy backs", much less their execution. Why are you not?

(Oh, and just because it pisses me off, those magazines attached to the Street Sweepers are not "high-capacity" – those are the only magazines ever made for that firearm, which means they are strictly normal-capacity, a small detail the fearmongering morons at KOMO conveniently omitted.)

(This blood pressure spike brought to you by way of Joe Huffman.)

james yeager, helping the "gun control" extremists

Considering that my posts documenting how James Yeager is a coward and how he violated the Tennessee constitution are getting an unusual amount of traffic in recent days, I thought I would take a brief moment to comment on Yeager’s most recent bout of mind-numbing stupidity wherein he stated, "If it goes one inch further, I’m going to start killing people!".

First, just like the Sandy Hook Elementary School murderer, James Yeager is not representative of the average firearm owner, nor is he representative of the average pro-rights activist*. Using those two disgusting (for differing reasons) individuals to paint all firearm owners or pro-rights activists as murderous whackjobs looking for any and all excuses to fly off the handle is nothing more than a hasty generalization logical fallacy – a specious stereotype, in other words – and should be ridiculed and discarded as such.

Second, I refuse to allow my rights to be limited simply because one person who happens to own similar pieces of machined metal as I do cannot keep his temper in check. Or, to put it another way, one nutcase losing his gos-se on an internet video is a wholly insufficient reason to limit everyone else’s rights. You and I both may not like what Yeager says, and, speaking personally, I would very much prefer if he were to crawl in a deep, dark hole and pull it in after him, but so far as I can tell, he is operating within the bounds of the right protected by the First Amendment, and damned if I will not defend that right as much as the one protected by the Second Amendment.

Third, if you have ever received any training from James Yeager in regards to firearms, deadly force, or other related topics, I would strongly recommend that you seek out additional training from other sources such as Mas Ayoob, Larry Vickers, Todd Green, Front Sight, Gunsite, and countless other sources I do not know or cannot remember at the moment (note: I have no affiliation with the places or people named and have received no training from any of them). Why? The training Yeager provided you may have been technically and functionally accurate, but do you really want the prosecution of your self-defense hearing/trial holding up the video of Yeager claiming he is going to "start killing people" as an example of the person who trained you to shoot down that poor choir boy who was only trying to collect money for the Salvation Army mugger/rapist/murder/etc.? Being able to counter with examples of significantly-more-up-standing individuals in the self-defense training community might prove useful.

Fourth, do not even get me started on the cowardice of yanking the above video, claiming he does not retract any of his statements, and then whinging about people re-uploading the original video. If he had pulled the original clip and put up some kind of apology or somesuch in its place, I might consider giving him some credit… but this kind of response screams "hand caught in the cookie jar". Poor baby.

Fifth and finally, James Yeager and his company "Tactical Response" thankfully do not appear to be qualified to provide Tennessee Handgun Carry Permit instruction/training, but Yeager has been lying about his "certifications". I particularly enjoy how his site now says "TN Department of Safety Certified Firearms Instructor (formerly)", when the TN DOS representative TPM quotes states "there is no such certification offered".

[Update] On a related note to Yeager lying about his non-existent "certification" from TN DOS, it would appear as though his handgun carry permit has been revoked by the state of Tennessee "based on a ‘material likelihood of risk of harm to the public’". I cannot say as though I agree with that reasoning being acceptable to revoke a permit, and I have to wonder why that reasoning did not come into play during Yeager’s childish "duel" challenges, but there it is. [/Update]

In closing, like I said on Twitter, I would like to take a moment and thank James Yeager for providing the "gun control" extremists all the ammunition they will need to paint all firearm owners as equally deranged, murderous, and psychotic as he is… as if we did not have enough of that going on with the Sandy Hook murderer as it was. There are a fair number of people I sincerely wish were not "on my side", but this guy is pretty much at the top at the moment…

Of course, while I say that, rumor has it that James Yeager will be on the Ed Show (whatever the hell that is) on MSNBC tonight. Frakking awesome. We could have calm, cool, collected folks like Mr. Colion Noir represent us on national television, but instead we get flaming nutbags like Yeager. Good to see yellow journalism is still alive and well…

(* – I imagine James Yeager would get along with the woefully self-destructive "threeper" community just fine , what with his above-quoted line and absolute lack of any actual action on his part, but even I would not force this over-steroided gas-bag on even that community.)

quote of the day – theodore roosevelt

There is not much I can add to this quote from Theodore Roosevelt provided by The Art of Manliness:

If a public man tries to get your vote by saying that he will do something wrong in your interest, you can be absolutely certain that if ever it becomes worth his while he will do something wrong against your interest.

Unfortunately, the kinds of folks who most need to learn from that quote do not frequent weblogs like this one, but we will delve into it a bit regardless. Consider all of those politicians out there right now – and this applies to both sides of the political fence – who are all too eager to take money from the public coffers for their own pet projects and programs and whatnot else. If those programs are not essential to the core functioning of the American government, they are functionally stealing that money – taking it from those who can and do pay more taxes (the rich, in a word) and giving it, by way of those projects and programs, to those who do not pay as much in the way of taxes, if any at all. Hell, "Social Security" is nothing but institutionalized theft at this point; we, the producers, are having to support retired persons, on a ratio of 7:1, last I checked, simply because the government wants us to. The only choice I have in the matter is whether or not I work, and thus whether or not I starve Leviathan… and my family.

All that said, do those who receive the forced munificence of the American public, by way of the Federal Government, really believe that that Leviathan will not turn around and consume them, if it became politically expedient to do so? Well, given their voting records, I would guess they do.

But look aside from the politics for a moment; there are those amongst the gunblogger community who would steal from you and lie to your face all because they believe it is in their better interests to do so. Yet despite this behavior, individuals and organizations still align themselves with the thieves and liars, and sometimes even go so far as to support and reward that behavior.

One can only assume those individuals and groups believe the liars and thieves they associate themselves with will not turn on them when those aforementioned liars and thieves believe it is in their best interests… or maybe those individuals and groups think if they keep keep feeding the jackals, they can keep them under control.

Personally, much like Teddy Roosevelt, I see little profit in dealing with jackals in any fashion, even if they do appear to be leashed at the moment.

no matter how hard i muddle

… Guns and alcohol simply will not mix.

But moving on to more serious matters, it would appear as though the usual, useful idiots are trotting out the usual, useless arguments about ZOMG guns in bars. Color me surprised. However, just like here in Tennessee all those years ago, most of the arguments against allowing law-abiding, trained, and permitted individuals to carry firearms into establishments that serve alcohol are based on misdirection (the bill does not exclusively cover "bars", but also restaurants), hysteria, and misinformation, but all those similarities bring up an interesting question: what has happened here in the Patron State of Shooting Stuff ever since it became legal to lawfully carry a firearm into restaurants over two years ago*?

Well, in stark contrast with the doom-and-gloom prognostications of hoplophobic liars, the answer has pretty much been "nothing":

In 2010, the year after the law first passed, the state’s tourism numbers were up 6.3 percent, according to state officials. Every county saw a boost in tourism, according to a report by the Department of Tourism Development and the U.S. Travel Association.

“It doesn’t surprise me that tourism didn’t drop,” said Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey, R-Blountville. “There wasn’t one documented case still to this day of someone going into a bar, a gun permit holder, and using their firearm. There’s still not.”

[…]

In fact, abiding by the law appears to be just what the vast majority of Tennessee’s licensed gun-carriers are doing when they’re packing heat in establishments that serve alcohol. According to the state Department of Safety and Homeland Security, not one person with a handgun permit has been convicted of brandishing their weapon while drinking in a bar.

“We have not been notified by any courts across the state for any violations of that law,” said department spokeswoman Jennifer Donnals. “To our knowledge, there have been no convictions of that law.”

Huh. Would you look at that. In a year when the economy is tanking, people are being laid off, homes are being foreclosed, and the depression recession we find ourselves in was getting into full swing, the tourism in Tennessee (one of our state’s prime sources of income, given our no-income-tax-but-state-wide-sales-tax arrangement) increased over 6%, despite allowing law-abiding citizens to peaceably carry firearms into establishments that serve alcohol. Why, it is almost like people do not mind the notion of respecting and preserving everyone’s individual rights! What a thought…

On the other hand, given the complete and utter lack of criminal convictions, fatalities, or even incidents from handgun carry permit holders bringing their sidearms along into restaurants, would you care to take a guess as to how many alcohol-related fatalities there were on the roads here in Tennessee in 2010? Unfortunately, the numbers have not been updated for that year quite yet, but if past history is any indication of future performance, we are looking at well over 300 deaths, and that does not include the thousands of people who failed breathalyzer tests. So rather than turn their attention to an activity that has a proven record of resulting in convictions and deaths, the "gun control" extremists single-mindedly focus on arbitrarily abridging people’s rights for no good reason whatsoever. How is that "common sense" again?

Once again, anti-rights cultists do not really care about the blood (or lack thereof) they are dancing in, they do not care about public safety, and they sure as hell do not care about the American people; they only care about control and how to increase it. Thankfully, Ohio is following the trend sweeping the nation of expanding and preserving freedoms and rights despite the fearmongering of hoplophobes, and if Tennessee is any indication, I think they will do just fine.

* – At least the first time. The bill had to be passed again with modified language later.

(Courtesy of Michael Silence and Senator Stacey Campfield.)

not what i have come to expect

Al Gore is a liar. I know that. You know that. Pretty much the whole world knows that at this point. However, I am disappointed to no end that Bill Nye, the Science Guy, went along with this farcical “science experiment”:

Bill Nye, in his narration at 0:48 in the video says:

You can replicate this effect yourself in a simple lab experiment, here’s how.

…and at 1:10 in the video Nye says:

Within minutes you will see the temperature of the bottle with the carbon dioxide in it rising faster and higher.

[…]

Mr. Gore’s Climate 101 experiment is falsified, and could not work given the equipment he specified. If they actually tried to perform the experiment themselves, perhaps this is why they had to resort to stagecraft in the studio to fake the temperature rise on the split screen thermometers.

The experiment as presented by Al Gore and Bill Nye “the science guy” is a failure, and not representative of the greenhouse effect related to CO2 in our atmosphere. The video as presented, is not only faked in post production, the premise is also false and could never work with the equipment they demonstrated. Even with superior measurement equipment it doesn’t work, but more importantly, it couldn’t work as advertised.

My parents and I lived out in Washington State when Bill was getting his start on “Almost Live!” (I still remember his Speedwalker skits, in fact), and thereafter his Science Guy series was one of the few shows they allowed me to watch. It is fair to say that he had a pretty significant influence on my desire to go into engineering fields and tinker around with the things he talked about (of course, life had a funny way of changing that, but that is a topic for another post).

And here he is, lending his name – and credibility – to an obviously flawed and deficient science experiment that not only does not work the way he advertised, but, in fact, does the complete opposite.

Now maybe it is possible he never actually saw the experiment performed (actually, it is fairly likely, given that the experiment does not work). Maybe he was just sent a script for the voice-over-ing and never really demanded to see the documentation to support it. Maybe he just needed to put food on the table.

It still sucks to see a childhood hero come crashing down in a pile of political intrigue, though.

(Courtesy of Les Jones.)

quote of the day – mikeb302000

Michael Bonomo, writing under the pseudonym MikeB302000, is an inveterate, known liar and probable criminal who is physically incapable (by his own admission) of differentiating fact from fiction, performing basic mathematical functions of any type, or determining whether or not something he says is accurate or factual, who runs a blatantly bigoted weblog that advocates the abridgement of basic human rights, and who has been banned/moderated from too many pro-rights weblogs/forums to count (and is auto-moderated here, per the commenting policy).

All caught up? In short, Mike is anti-rights, anti-firearms, and anti-anyone-who-would-exercise-the-former-or-own-the-latter. Predictably, though, MikeB302000 has been somewhat… recalcitrant… in admitting to his particular bigotries, so you can imagine my surprise when I saw this quote of the day from him:

mikeb302000gunconfiscationAll right, I was exaggerating. If you guys suddenly cooperated with the common sense gun control laws that we propose and we saw a tremendous decrease in gun violence, we would naturally want stricter laws in order to lower even more the remaining gun violence. Eventually, I and most of the others would conclude that no guns at all in civilian hands is the best way to go.

(Emphasis added.)

After this paragraph, Sparky (as Mike is sometimes known) prattled on about how the failure of gun control is the fault of pro-rights advocates (in which he is partially right, though that is one failure I will never apologize for or regret), but, much like most of his comments, that part is somewhat irrelevant – I want you to pay attention to the above words… or, at least, some of them.

Ignore, for a moment, the logical fallacy that is "common sense gun control laws".

Ignore, for a moment, the despicable fallacy of using "gun deaths" as a metric of success.

Ignore, for a moment, the blatant lie that "gun control" reduces crime rates.

Focus exclusively on the last, bolded sentence – "… no guns at all in civilian hands …"

Complete and total civilian disarmament has always been the end-game for anti-rights cultists like MikeB302000, but they invariably beat around the bush, prevaricate, and generally avoid the topic as best they can… but this is the honest truth: they do not just want to stop people from exercising their Constitutionally-protected rights by lawfully bearing arms, they do not just want to ban affordable self-defense tools (aka "Saturday Night Specials"), they do not just want to ban semi-automatic, magazine-fed rifles (aka "assault weapons"), they do not just want to ban hunting rifles (aka "high-powered sniper rifles"), they do not just want to ban duck-hunting shotguns (aka "street-sweeping bullet-hose"), they do not just want to ban the ammunition feeding devices certain firearms were designed for (aka "high-capacity magazines" or "assault clips"), and the sad thing is they do not just want to ban firearms in general.

No, anti-rights cultists / "gun control" supporters want to take your property from you, by force, ironically at the point of a firearm being wielded by the government.

There is, of course, a simple answer to this authoritarian, unconstitutional desire: NO.

However, the rational, common-sense response to someone wanting to confiscate your personal property on the basis of their own baseless phobias is not really the point of this post – instead, consider the mentality of the person who would make such a demand. Through that one sentence, Mike Bonomo expressed that he not only opposes the private ownership of firearms (and thus the notion of a right to self-defense), but also opposes the right to private ownership of any product (if a government can confiscate your firearm based off his psychological shortcomings, why not any other item you own?), the right to privacy (the government could not get rid of your gun if they did not know you have it, after all), and the right to free association (i.e. contractual agreements between consenting adults, i.e. "private sales"). And why does he oppose those rights? Because his faith requires him to believe that doing so will result in some magical outcome that has never been witnessed anywhere else in the world… and probably because he has a narcissistic, authoritarianistic streak running beneath that not-so-cultured demeanor.

MikeB302000 is the very model of a modern anti-rights cultist, in every sense of those words.

This is what we are fighting against, folks, and why we oppose people like Bonomo so vociferously – they have no respect for our property, they have no respect for our rights, and, worst of all, they have no respect for us as human beings, and yet they want to tell us how to live our lives, and what we are and are not allowed to do or own. I am not at all sorry to point out that that is simply not how America works, and while anti-rights cultists like Mike are welcome to believe whatever their bigoted little hearts desires, our rights are not subject to their beliefs.

(And, just for the giggles of it, I will close this post with a quote from the inimitable Robert Heinlein, writing as Lazarus Long: "Anyone who cannot cope with mathematics is not fully human. At best he is a tolerable subhuman who has learned to wear shoes, bathe, and not make messes in the house.")

joan peterson lies

Last week, Joan Peterson (aka “Japete” on her misnamed “Common Gunsense” weblog – link intentionally omitted) took it upon herself to appear before the Minnesota House Public Safety Committee as a representative of the anti-rights, pro-criminal cult of America, and speak out against the bill relating to the use of deadly force in defense of home and person (Castle Doctrine, in short), pistol permit renewals, and the comprehensiveness of background checks. 

Before she even gave the speech she had prepared, she whinged about being called out as a “liar”, saying, and I quote: 

I need to start out by saying first, Chair Cornish, I do resent being called a liar before I’ve even appeared before you to make your remarks… 

… and shortly afterwards, she brought her whining to Twitter

Gun rights lawyer says gun control advocates are liars before we had a chance to testify at hearing today. Jerk!!!

Unfortunately for her, and unsurprisingly to the rest of us, the simple truth is that she lied about being called a liar: 

So what did Representative Tony Cornish actually say? 

… the opposition will come up, and, um, if it’s anything like the claims that have been made in the paper and in the media and some of the emails, well many of them are false and just downright lies…

Chair Cornish did not call Joan a liar, and thus she lied about his actions.  Irony, thy name is Joan Peterson. 

Of course, you and I both know that Joan Peterson has lied in the past, and thus calling her out as a liar before she spoke at the Committee would not only be wholly appropriate, it would also be 100% accurate, thus relegating her “resentment” to the “Who cares?” category in very short order.  Unfortunately, just like every last one of her arguments, Joan Peterson is not well-grounded in this thing we like to call ‘reality’, and is thus prone to such irrational outbursts as we see above and have observed in the past

Sadly, this disconnect from reality is pervasive throughout Joan Peterson’s behavior, and we can only hope she gets the help she obviously needs soon… no one should have to suffer from such a debilitating condition as she does. 

(Video courtesy of Braden Lynch by way of an email – thanks!)