Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Brady Bunch at it Again!

Apparently emboldened by alleged gains at the polls this November, Fox News reports that the Brady Campaign has sued to prevent “a last-second Bush administration change that would allow Americans to carry concealed, loaded guns in most national parks and wildlife refuges.” The initial administration ruling was a great victory for law-abiding supporters of the Second Amendment, and the latest shenanigans by the Brady Campaign represent yet another shining example of their efforts to gut our Bill of Rights.

Basically the new policy is:

“The previous regulation required that firearms be unloaded and placed somewhere that is not easily accessible, such as inside a car trunk. But in January, visitors will be able to carry a loaded gun into a park or wildlife refuge if the person has a concealed weapon permit and if state law also allows concealed firearms.”

This is not some “radical” policy – it’s simply bringing Federal regulations in line with state laws, yet that’s “too much” for the Brady Bunch – they apparently won’t be satisfied until someone has rounded up every firearm in the U.S. The court case will bear watching, and I’ll post more information as it comes in.

Until next time!!!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

February 2009 Guns and Ammo Review

The latest issue of Guns and Ammo magazine is hitting stores now. Some cool stuff in this issue. There’s an “antiques and collectables” quiz. I managed 9/10 on it. It’s a fun quiz covering mostly American firearms.

The “Gun Room” has some interesting C&R questions this time around. First one that caught my eye was on regarding a Carcano cavalry carbine (they guy thought it might be WW1, but it sure sounds like a WW2 gun, though the article doesn’t definitively state one way or another – it just gives advice on how to narrow it down). There’s also a good one about a M1911A1 pistol that was the individual’s father’s weapon during WW2 – and there’s a good chance that it might have been at Pearl Harbor on December 7th. G&A indicates the value (already at ~$2100) could double with documentable provenance. Documenting provenance is very difficult though, and I generally advise people to buy the weapon not the story. Another individual wrote in about a 1917 Smith and Wesson revolver. Now there’s a pistol I’d love to own. . .

There’s also an article on the XDm 9 with its 19+1 configuration. I’ve got one of these pistols, and I really love the ergonomics. Unfortunately with the weather I haven’t been able to take it out to the range yet. Depending on the ammo used, the were able to get 2.5 to 4.0 inch groups, and they indicated that the sidearm can easily handle +P and +P+ ammunition, really increasing the utility of the 9mm caliber.

There’s also a great article on the Spencer repeating rifle. I’m usually more of a WW2 buff, but the Civil War and post Civil War era is becoming increasingly interesting to me (there’s this reproduction Sharps rifle in 45-120 that I’ve drooled over on many occasions, but I digress). The cool part is they get one of the real things out and do a range test. I’m now officially jealous of these guys!

Until next time!!!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Scammers Now Hitting Gun Auction Sites

Just a heads up, it looks like the scam artists are now hitting the gun auction sites. I was an unsuccessful bidder on a Type 14 Pistol (yeah, I’m a Japanese weapon freak – so sue me!), and received an email saying I could “make an offer” on the pistol. First tip off was the name on the email didn’t match the name of the seller. Second tip off is I was about four bidders down on the list, so any “second chance” offer should have come through the system and would have gone through several users before it got to me. I played along just to see where it would go and simply reiterated my high bid on the item. Sure enough it comes back with a “I accept, it includes all taxes and shipping” etc., please give me all this information (name, address, COUNTRY, *snort*). Anyway, the offending party, "Barbosa" barbosa989 (at) gmail (dot) com, has been reported to Auction Arms.

Remember, if you get a suspicious email, save them and forward them to the fraud protection emails of the appropriate web sites. . .

Until next time!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Regarding Sheepdogs

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas! Ours was a bit challenging, we had 3 feet of snow and 4 days without power, but we seem to be back on the grid now.

I just came across a good read over at the Warrior Science Group called “On Sheep, Wolves and Sheepdogs”. It’s an excerpt from the book On Combat, by Lt. Col. Dave Grossman and should be a must read for just about everyone, but especially anyone who takes their right to self defense seriously. It’s an absolutely no nonsense discussion about the dangers of denial in the modern world. It defines three basic roles of people in society, the sheep, the wolf, and the sheepdog, but explains that these are not nice neat pigeon holes. They instead represent a continuum:

"If you have no capacity for violence then you are a healthy productive citizen: a sheep. If you have a capacity for violence and no empathy for your fellow citizens, then you have defined an aggressive sociopath--a wolf. But what if you have a capacity for violence, and a deep love for your fellow citizens? Then you are a sheepdog, a warrior, someone who is walking the hero’s path. Someone who can walk into the heart of darkness, into the universal human phobia, and walk out unscathed."

Another good tidbit here:

"Here is the point I like to emphasize, especially to the thousands of police officers and soldiers I speak to each year. In nature the sheep, real sheep, are born as sheep. Sheepdogs are born that way, and so are wolves. They didn’t have a choice. But you are not a critter. As a human being, you can be whatever you want to be. It is a conscious, moral decision. If you want to be a sheep, then you can be a sheep and that is okay, but you must understand the price you pay. When the wolf comes, you and your loved ones are going to die if there is not a sheepdog there to protect you. If you want to be a wolf, you can be one, but the sheepdogs are going to hunt you down and you will never have rest, safety, trust or love."

And a bit near the end:

"This business of being a sheep or a sheepdog is not a yes-no dichotomy. It is not an all-or-nothing, either-or choice. It is a matter of degrees, a continuum. On one end is an abject, head-in-the-grass sheep and on the other end is the ultimate warrior. Few people exist completely on one end or the other. Most of us live somewhere in between. Since 9-11 almost everyone in America took a step up that continuum, away from denial."

In some ways it’s an oversimplification, but it does succinctly describe some of the trends in modern society. There is a fairly large segment of the population that believes someone else is going to take care of them, or worse, that it is someone else’s JOB to take care of them. These people are frequently in favor of strict gun control because it gives them the illusion that they have “defanged” the wolves, when all they have done is “defanged” their fellow citizens and created more prey for the wolves.

Until next time!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Scott Dixon’s Anti-Second Rant in Ashland Daily Tidings

The Ashland Daily Tidings recently published an editorial by a self described retired engineer named Scott Dixon. Mr. Dixon believes that there are too many firearms in the United States, and that it would be appropriate for the government to impose a $400 per firearm tax on all firearms in private hands in the United States:

“While acknowledging the constitutional right to bear arms, I feel that there may be an economic method to persuade gun owners to part with their guns. Governments sometimes require citizens to collectively bear the costs incurred by a few. Society could say, "Fine, you can have your guns. However, we know that the private ownership of guns causes huge economic losses for our society. We want the owners of guns to collectively pay for those losses." I believe that if the owner of each gun had to pay the pro-rated share of the violence done by all guns, he would be inclined to dispose of the gun quickly.”

I guess Mr. Dixon would be okay with a tax on other expressions of Constitutionally guaranteed rights. What about $100 for every article published in a local paper and $500 for something on a national level? $1 for each internet post? $1 for every phone call? How about throwing in a pew tax of $20 every time you go to Church as well? If you want the right to trial by jury, does a tax of $1000 per case plus the lost wages of the jurors seem appropriate?

Mr. Dixon misses the entire concept of an “inalienable right”. A right is just that – it is something that is not granted by our government. It is an area our government allegedly holds no power over. Charging to exercise a right is an infringement of that right as surely as any gun ban. Furthermore he advocates the same fallacy that gun banners do – the law abiding with no guilt who are in no way contributing to the “social cost” of criminal acts bear the brunt of paying for the damage done.

Taxation was one of the central issues that started the first American Revolution, and quite frankly I believe any such proposal would be met with equal hostility today. Mike Vanderboegh has expressed essentially that same sentiment over on his blog. Hopefully saner heads will prevail and Mr. Dixon’s wrong-headed neo-royalist ideas will be consigned once again to the dustbin of history – where they belong.

Until next time!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Viet Nam Era AR-15 Clone Finally Done!

When it comes to firearms I not only enjoy shooting and hunting, but collecting as well. I’m trying to get a good collection of American infantry rifles. I’ve got Garands, 1903’s, 1903A3’s, Model 1917, M1 Carbines, even a Krag. I also have a couple of AR-15’s in the modern M4 configuration. That leaves a couple of gaps in the collection – the M14 and the Viet Nam era M16. Obviously unless I’m willing to drop $15,000+, I’m not going to get a fully automatic version of either – so I go the next best route – M1A and an AR-15 on the old pattern. I still have the M1A on my Chirstmas list (and Santa sure ain’t bringing it THIS year), but now the “M16” gap has finally been closed. My “old school” AR-15 is finally complete.

Collecting all of the parts took some time, and I finally got the last of what I needed at the gun show today. It’s built on a Superior Arms lower with a Olympic lower parts kit. The pistol grip and buttstock are M16 GI. I assembled the lower myself. The upper is an old A1 upper with a Colt barrel I came across at the show today. The bolt and carrier assembly are a chrome Young bolt and carrier. Now all I need is a 60’s vintage sling and I’m ready to rock and roll!

I had a lot of fun building this rifle, and I can’t wait to get it out and see what it’ll do on the range.
Until next time!!!

Rose City Gun Show Report

Went to the gun show in Portland today – attendance was down from last time – of course I think that has a lot to do with the major snowstorm coming through the Portland area today. We already had about 10” of snow in the hills outside Portland, but they only had a dusting in town. Scappoose now has 13” and we have almost 20” of snow.

Ammunition was back at the show, although the prices are twice what I was paying 2-3 years ago. You could get 500 rounds of .223 for $170 or so for the low-end stuff. 7.62x39 was a bit less plentiful but roughly in the same ballpark. Anything that could be mis-labeled an “assault rifle” by ignorant gun grabbers has also gone up in price anywhere from 30% to 50% since before the election, and there were few to be found.

Not as many C&R rifles as I’d hoped to see. Unfortunately a lot of people were packing up shop early because of the weather. I figure very few people will be at the show tomorrow. I had my eye on a couple of decent home defense shot guns, but didn’t pick one up. My wife hasn’t gotten my Christmas present yet though . . .

I actually saw a lot of people I knew behind the tables. I’m thinking about setting up a table next time around, but we’ll see how it goes.

Until next time!!!

Friday, December 19, 2008

U.S. Model of 1917 Enfield in American Rifleman

The January 2009 issue of American Rifleman had a neat surprise for the collector in me on the last page of the issue. The “I have this old gun . . . “ feature regularly covers interesting firearms of yesteryear, and this time around is a real gem. This month the rifle is the U.S. Model of 1917 Enfield.

Produced by three arsenals (Winchester, Remington, and Eddystone), it was put into high-volume production to supplement existing stocks of M1903 Springfield rifles (which numbered only about 600,000 when the U.S. entered the war in 1917). Over 2 million were produced over a two year period.

I own one Model 1917 rifle. Outside it’s a beautiful piece, but the barrel was a major disappointment when I received it. I’ve shot it a few times with medium loads, and the barrel has started to look a bit better. I believe most of the problem on this particular rifle is due to copper fouling. The accuracy seems reasonable even with the somewhat suspect barrel condition.

American Rifleman indicates that 50% to 75% pieces are generally fetching $350 to $600 at this point, with a Blue Book value for a 100% gun close to $2500. The Blue Book value seems a bit high, even for a pristine piece – but if it was a pristine Winchester I could almost believe it with the premium Winchester collectors are willing to pay.

Until next time!!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

GOA Urges Members to Contact National Geographic Regarding Anti-Gun Program

Growing up I remember my parents getting National Geographic. This was during the late 70’s and through the 80’s as America’s unmanned space program opened up our solar system to us. The pictures of Jupiter, Saturn, and the outer planets were amazing and really captured my imagination. I also enjoyed several of the features on animals, less so on the cultures, but hey I was a teenager. A lot has changed since the 80’s – with the explosion of cable channels, National Geographic now has one of their own. They’ve recently been running a feature presentation entitled “Guns In America”. I’d hoped that the program would live up to National Geographic’s reputation for good research. Unfortunately it turned out to be little more than an anti-Second Amendment hit piece.

Gun Owners of America is urging its members (and everyone else) to contact National Geographic regarding their slanted and yellow journalism on this topic. The program had numerous factual errors and presented debunked research in support of their anti-Second agenda. I’ve reprinted my letter (which is an editing of the one suggested by GOA) below.

Dear Mr. Kelly:

I have always been a supporter of National Geographic magazine. As a youth I eagerly awaited the monthly subscription to learn about our world and the solar system beyond. However at this point I must move away from your publication as it has become a source of thinly veiled anti-gun propaganda.
I speak specifically of the Explorer show entitled "Guns In America" -- which has run several times this month. The slant toward an unsupportable gun control position was palpable. The show used fallacious statistics without rebutting them, all in an effort to demonize firearms.

For example, "Guns in America" falsely claimed that guns in the home are 22 times more likely to kill a family member than to serve as protection. That is simply not true. The author of this study, Arthur Kellerman, has been discredited many times (by groups such as the National Academy of Sciences), so it is intellectually dishonest that your channel would even cite his work.

Second, "Guns in America" overstates the number of children who die by unintentional gunfire. In fact, when you look at the statistics involving younger children (ages 0-14), you see that kids have a greater chance of dying from choking on things like the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches that you feed them. Can I expect to see a show in the near future highlighting the danger of feeding children?

Third, "Guns in America" portrays twelve times as many negative uses of guns as positive uses -- even though in the real world, the truth is quite the opposite. According to statistics from the Clinton Justice Department in 2007, guns are used at least 50 times more often to save life than take life.

Finally, "Guns in America" only quotes anti-gun "authorities," thus leaving the impression that all law-enforcement support gun control. Never mind the fact that when one looks at polls of the police community, they overwhelmingly hold pro-gun attitudes. (Please see the poll results on the website for the National Association of Chiefs of Police.) Why were none of these authorities ever cited?

The National Geographic Society's purpose is "to increase and diffuse geographic knowledge while promoting the conservation of the world's cultural, historical, and natural resources." I would submit to you that pushing such an unabashedly anti-Second Amendment position is far afield from your stated purpose.

Hopefully National Geographic will get the message, but it seems like they’re bought and paid for by the extreme left at this point.

Until next time!!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Seattle Rebuffs Anti-Gun Mayor

As reported by this blog in an earlier entry, Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels has proposed numerous restrictions on firearms in the city, including bans in parks and other areas. I hoped that they people of Seattle would stand up to this blatant attack on both the Second Amendment and the Washington State Constitution as well. Apparently that’s exactly what happened. According to The Seattle Weekly’s online edition over 150 people showed up a City Hall, with a "vast majority sporting fashionable anti-Nickels buttons provided by the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms."

Not only could the Mayor himself not be bothered to show up to this hearing, instead sending Alex Fryer as his designated mouthpiece, but Mr. Fryer went so far as to suggest that the majority of the opposition came from outside the city, and that "…we believe this has a lot of support from the community."

The Mayor and Mr. Fryer’s "belief" aside, the numbers seem to tell a far different story. According to the article:

"Twenty-two individuals signed up to speak in favor of Nickels' rule change whereas more than 60 spoke against. Of these, roughly half, or more, lived inside Seattle and most of the rest claimed to visit or work in the Emerald City on a regular basis."

Not only do the numbers not seem to support the unconstitutional moves of the Mayor, but perhaps more encouraging is the range of demographics speaking out against the move:

"There were healthy numbers of liberals and progressives, environmentalists and community activists mixed in with Republicans and Libertarians who were opposed to the notion that, despite being licensed to legally carry a concealed firearm, they'd be forced to walk unarmed in city parks while gang members, stalkers and sundry other criminals are free to pack heat."

The left always likes to talk about the virtues of multi-culturism and bi-partisan efforts, and it looks like in this case the broadest base of people do NOT support these moves by the Seattle Mayor’s office. Even those who spoke in favor of the measure admitted that the bans would not have prevented numerous recent high-profile attacks in the city, nor would they be likely to prevent such attacks in the future. The author then draws the logical conclusion:

"Which begs the question, and was asked numerous times by audience members, if the ban on guns in public places wouldn't have prevented these high-profile murder cases, and if it won't dissuade actual criminals from having firearms or 'deadly weapons' in public places, what is the point of having a ban at all? "

That of course is the operative question, and it is the question we all have been trying to get the anti-Second Amendment community to answer for decades. From Los Angeles, to DC, to Chicago, to New York, gun bans have created nothing more than the illusion of safety while turning law-abiding individuals who take their own self protection seriously into criminals and letting the real criminals murder, rape, and steal at will with a tailor made supply of disarmed victims. Hopefully Mayor Nickles will rethink his unconstitutional positions. If not, perhaps the people of Seattle will decide someone who respects their rights and liberties deserves the job instead.

Until next time!!!

Ted Tells It Like It Is!

Yet another great editorial by the always outspoken and always entertaining Ted Nugent this weekend in the Waco Tribune. The title: “Gun-free zone a crime unto itself”. Never were truer words spoken.

Ted starts out with the oft repeated tale of the hapless Plaxico Burress – the New York Giants player who shot himself in the leg. Now he’s facing a mountain of legal problems. Why? Because he had the temerity to have a GLOCK (oooh, evil) in his possession in New York City. That’s it – and that warrants condign legal action by the city – the fact that he had a weapon in his possession – a weapon that is perfectly legal in the majority of these United States.

As always, Ted doesn’t put too fine a point on it:

“Criminal thugs, of course, are not deterred from carrying guns by New York City's draconian gun laws. Mayor Blowhard Bloomberg and other Big Apple elected buffoons who forbid NYC citizens from defending themselves are complicit in turning innocent, law-abiding citizens into defenseless victims.”

Maybe every time a citizen is attacked and killed in New York City, Bloomberg and his cronies should be charged as accessories? I bet some laws would change pretty darn quick at that point!

Ted also makes an astute parallel to the incident in Mumbai:

“Imagine terrorists simultaneously attacking a number of hotels in Manhattan, or an event at Madison Square Garden or Central Park. As good as they are, it would take hours or days for the New York City's finest to kill or capture all of the terrorists.

“Now try to imagine the same scenario if New York City residents were allowed to carry guns to protect themselves. At least they would have a fighting chance. Not today.

“Thanks to its well-body-guarded mayor and other anti-freedom bureaucrats, New York City residents would be as helpless as the victims in Mumbai.”

Again, I couldn’t have said it better myself. Terrorists are going to look for soft targets in the United States, and because of their restrictive gun laws, many of the major metropolitan areas in the US – not just New York, but Chicago, DC, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, among many others have effectively painted targets on themselves. I can only pray that the people realize this fact before it’s too late.

Until next time!!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Oregon’s Ongoing Concealed Carry Controversy

Recent weeks have witnessed a fair amount of thrash in the Oregon Concealed Carry community. It started with a group seeking the release of the names of CCW holders statewide. Many Sheriff’s departments have declined to provide this information, including the Rob Gordon, Sheriff of Washington County. Some commentary from his letter to CCW holders:

“As your sheriff, I refused to disclose that information because I believe many people obtain a concealed handgun license for personal security and would not want that information made public. I also resist disclosing personal information because of the continuing identity theft risks.

“Despite my belief (shared by sheriffs across Oregon), an Oregon court recently decided that there is no evidence that people obtain concealed handgun licenses for security measures. The court ordered the Jackson County Sheriff to disclose a list of all the concealed handgun license holders in his county to the local newspaper. The case is now before the Oregon Court of Appeals.”

Everyone in Washington County should send a big THANK YOU to Sheriff Gordon for his integrity in the face of yet another bizarre “interpretation” of the law by Oregon’s Courts. Hopefully the order will be struck down on appeal or at the Oregon Supreme Court.

Unfortunately the Oregon Appellate Courts don’t have a good track record at this point. The Oregon Firearms Federation has released an alert indicating that the Appellate Court has ruled that an individual’s car is now a “public place.” The ruling came in response to t he case, Bryan Ward VS State of Oregon, in which a Portland Police officer, arrested an individual with an unconcealed handgun in his car.

Some commentary from OFF:

“It has always been our position that open carry in a vehicle was clearly protected by Oregon law. ORS 166.250 clearly states that except for CHL holders, it is concealed carry in a vehicle that is prohibited. It further states that the prohibition against concealed, loaded carry in a vehicle does not apply to ‘a recreational vessel or recreational vehicle while used, for whatever period of time, as residential quarters.’

“The Appeals Court decision turns on its head Oregon's preemption statute which allows only the state legislature to regulate possession of firearms, except for loaded carry in public places. If your car is now considered a "public place" will a law enforcement officer need a warrant to search it?”

This ruling certainly opens up a huge can of worms. Hopefully it will be revisited either by the Oregon Supreme Court or through legislative action. Until then, I worry about the level of judicial activism we’re witnessing in many of these recent Oregon cases.

Until next time!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Brightwater Thieves Arrested

According to The Oregonian, the perpetrators of the burglary of a local Vancouver firearms store have been apprehended. Brightwater Ventures had reported a total of 130 firearms stolen, of those, 124 have been recovered.

The break in the case came when a 15-year-old was discovered with one of the stolen firearms at his school. Authorities arrested the 15-year-old and his older brother Christopher Aguon, 21, of Vancouver as well as a 17-year-old and 20-year-old (not named in the story) in connection with the robbery.

Hopefully all of these individuals will have the book thrown at them. It is people like these that represent the greatest danger to our Second Amendment rights. They also prove the adage that gun control laws only impact the lawful. Thieves and criminals have no regard for the law and other people’s property. In the wrong hands these firearms could have done a great deal of damage. Fortunately most (if not all) of them are now back in the owner’s hands.

Until next time!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

2008 Congress – It Could Be Much Worse!

One of the members of the gunsnet community posted an analysis of the 2006 and 2008 Congressional elections this morning. All other things being equal, it paints a bit rosier picture of the incoming Congress than the initial returns would have you believe. The table below summarizes the NRA rating of all of the members of both the 2006 and 2008 House and Senate.

As you can see, the pro-Second Amendment cause has lost a little ground from 2006 to 2008, but the numbers are not totally disastrous. I’ve taken the data above and graphed it into pie charts so the balance of power is clearly visual.

In 2006, “A” rated representatives held a clear majority in the House, and if you throw in the “B” rated members, that majority only grows.

In 2008, amazingly “A” rated representatives STILL hold a clear majority of the votes in the House. That majority is thinner than it was in 2006, and the number of “B” rated representatives is smaller but still provides some cushion. The number of “F” rated representatives is roughly unchanged, but there has been significant growth in the number of “D” rated representatives. Hopefully this trend will not continue, but the good news is that strong anti-Second Amendment legislation is going to run into a serious roadblock in the House of Representatives.

The picture in the Senate is, however, not quite as favorable.

In 2006, “A” rated senators made up the largest voting bloc at 47, and if you add in the 4 “B” rated senators, then solidly pro-gun individuals made up a majority in the Senate.

In 2008 the picture has changed somewhat for the worse. These numbers were tabulated before the four initially undecided races were finalized, so there will undoubtedly be impact from those races. In 2008 there are only 41 “A” rated senators at this point – a steep drop from 2006, but they prevent any anti-Second “supermajority” in the Senate, so the filibuster is still in play. The only good news is at this point there is no net growth in “D” rated or “F” rated senators either. That may change going forward.

Going forward, it appears that a pro-Second majority is in the bag in the House of Representatives; however we can’t take that for granted. Remember when firearm related bills are proposed to write your representatives. In the Senate one suggested tactic is to focus on the bloc of “C” rated senators. This probably isn’t a bad tactic as they could go either way on any particular piece of legislation. However if we value our liberties, we need to write our representatives regardless of where they fall on the curve, from the staunchest “A” rated supporter of our right to keep and bear arms all the way through the worst “F” rated gun grabber. Even if we have no hope of lobbying our representative, we can’t afford to remain silent as the stakes are simply too high.

Until next time!!!

Anti-gun Illinois Governor Arrested

By now I’m sure you’re aware that anti-gun Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich has been arrested on charges of attempting to sell Obama’s soon to be vacant senate seat to the highest bidder. He was released on $4500 bail (which seems very low – I guess it’s good to be a corrupt politician in Illinois), and forced to forfeit his passport and Illinois firearm owner’s identification card. Some of his hit parade of alleged offenses according to

“Blagojevich also was charged with illegally threatening to withhold state assistance to Tribune Co., the owner of the Chicago Tribune, in an attempt to strong-arm the newspaper into firing editorial writers who had criticized him.

“The 51-year-old Democrat was also accused of engaging in pay-to-play politics—that is, doling out jobs, contracts and appointments in return for campaign contributions.”

It’s amazing that the people of Illinois put up with this sort of flagrant corruption, and I hope that Blagojevich ends up in jail for a very long time for these atrocities.

I also find it amazingly hypocritical that an individual who has campaigned tirelessly to limit firearm ownership opportunities for the citizens of his state holds a firearm owner’s card. Yet one more example of the extreme left’s elitist “I’m better than you” and “I’m above you” mentality. This sort of arrogance is replete in the politics of these corrupt demagogues who are sending our country to hell in a hand basket. Hopefully the people of Illinois will wake up and attack the Chicago machine, but as a member of that machine has just been elected President, I’m not holding my breath.

Until next time!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Ron Paul’s Sage Commentary on Gun Control

In the December 8th installment of his weekly blog “Texas Straight Talk” Ron Paul provides yet another timely message on the dangers of gun control. The title of this installment is “Gun Control: Protecting Terrorists and Despots”, and uses the most recent tragedy in Mumbai as an initial focal point. Representative Paul states:

“Regardless of the reasons, the indiscriminate shooting on masses of unarmed and defenseless people is chilling and reprehensible. How were these terrorists able to continue so long, relatively unchallenged, killing so many?

“India’s gun laws are her business, of course. However, once the shock of these events and the initial reaction of fear passes, Americans should take away a valuable lesson about real homeland security and gun control from this tragedy.”

Ron Paul is just the latest of many individuals around the world who have astutely pointed out that the disaster in Mumbai represents the ultimate failure of strict gun control and the dangerous illusion of safety that it generates for an unwitting populace. The people of India believed that they were safe. They believed that individuals with firearms did not roam their streets. They believed that their laws and police protected them from harm, but unfortunately they were wrong on all counts. Their police were ill trained. The perpetrators of this inhumane atrocity cared nothing for the rule of law or the strictures put in place by the Indian government. The people were therefore left defenseless as a legal code will not stop a terrorist’s bullet.

Ron Paul also makes what should be an obvious point, but one that is completely lost on the proponents of gun control:

“The fact is that firearm technology exists. It cannot be uninvented. As long as there is metalworking and welding capability, it matters not what gun laws are imposed upon law-abiding people. Those that wish to have guns, and disregard the law, will have guns. Gun control makes violence safer and more effective for the aggressive, whether the aggressor is a terrorist or a government.”

The only effective defense against an individual with a firearm is for the potential victim or victims to be protected with their own firearms – and the will and ability to use those firearms effectively. People are taught to “call the police” if the worst happens. If one is disarmed, that is the only option, but in reality people aren’t calling for the police, they’re calling for a gun to defend them against attack. Unfortunately police are often critical minutes away. By the time they arrive, their job is limited to chalking out the body and cordoning off the crime scene to collect evidence. Societies with strict gun control effectively remove the ability of the individual to protect themselves.

Ron Paul ends the commentary with a warning:

“In our own country, we should be ever vigilant against any attempts to disarm the people, especially in this economic downturn. I expect violent crime to rise sharply in the coming days, and as states and municipalities are even more financially strained, the police will be even less able or willing to respond to crime. In many areas, local police could become more and more absorbed with revenue generating activities, like minor traffic violations and the asset forfeiture opportunities of non-violent drug offenses. Your safety has always, ultimately been your own responsibility, but never more so than now. People have a natural right to defend themselves. Governments that take that away from their people should be highly suspect.”

Couldn’t have said it better myself! Yet another great dose of wisdom from Ron Paul.

Until next time!!!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Tribune Files for Bankruptcy

File this under “couldn’t happen to a better paper”. According to MSNBC, the Tribune Co. has filed for bankruptcy protection. The Tribune owns the Chicago Tribune and the L.A. Times among others. Quite frankly I’m glad to see the paper in hot water.

I’m all for freedom of the press, but this is the organization that used its both the Chicago Tribune and the L.A. Times as bully pulpits to call for the repeal of the Second Amendment in response to the Heller decision. To see both of these major papers calling for a shredding of the very Bill of Rights that protects their right to a free press and free speech is beyond the pale, and it shows the callous disregard the far left has for the basic rights of Americans.

Many readers at the time vowed to vote with their feet, and it looks like it’s finally making a difference.

Until next time!!!

Obama Says Not to Stock Up on Guns!

Wonder if he’s afraid they won’t actually be able to track them all down...

According to a recent article from the Chicago Sun-Times, Obama said that Americans don’t need to rush out and stock up on firearms before he’s sworn into office. According to the article Obama indicated:

"I believe in common-sense gun safety laws, and I believe in the second amendment. Lawful gun owners have nothing to fear. I said that throughout the campaign. I haven't indicated anything different during the transition. I think people can take me at my word."

Sure, that makes it all better – let’s just ignore your track record in Illinois, ignore your track record in the Senate, ignore your picks for your administration, and ignore the insulting question you included in your staff questionnaire. I’m sorry, Mr. Obama, your credibility on this issue is already below zero and losing ground fast.

If you really want to win over “lawful gun owners” promise NOT to enact an assault weapon ban, promise NOT to enact the draconian “ammunition accountability act”, promise NOT to require universal firearm registration, promise to rein in the abuses of the BATFE. Otherwise, stop wasting your breath on obviously false propaganda.

The Brady Campaign’s comments on the issue were predictably condescending. Peter Hamm, designated mouthpiece for the aforementioned freedom-haters club, states:

"We don't dispute [the gun sales hike] because the numbers from the federal system certainly confirm that there is increased activity out there. We just think it's a bit stupid. Anyone who thinks they need to rush out and buy a firearm clearly has not been paying attention to how quickly we make progress on this issue. We don't think these are first-time buyers. We think they are people who already have more than enough guns at their homes to protect themselves and are buying more."

Oooooh SNAP! Americans are now “stupid” because they want to exercise their Second Amendment rights. Way to win friends and influence people there Peter. I’m certain that many existing gun owners have taken this opportunity to add to their collections, but based on personal experience from gun shows, there are a lot of new people out there as well.

Simply because it might take Obama and the Brady Campaign “time” to shred the Bill of Rights is no reason to sit by complacently. In fact, that seems to be what they want us to do. Remember – they can’t take away our freedoms, no matter what unconstitutional “law” they pass – we can only choose to give them up. The next several years will require the utmost in effort on our parts, but I am certain we are equal to the coming trials.

Until next time!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Great Article from the UK

Well, it appears that common sense hasn’t completely left the shores of Great Britain if a recent piece from the Times Online is any indication. It makes the simple, yet for the UK shocking statement: “If each of us carried a gun . . . we could help to combat terrorism.” The article covers the recent shocking massacre in Mumbai where a few trained terrorists killed or wounded over 500 people, and ties it to the long history of strict gun control laws in India.

The author points out that while India has strict gun control, all of the weapons used in the attack were “prohibited weapons” – yet those laws did not matter one whit to the deranged terrorists merely out to spill the blood of the innocent. Those same laws are equally “irrelevant” in Britain, New York, or any other place where individuals choose to ignore them in perpetrating their criminal ends – be those ends the drug trade, the arms trade, protection rackets, or simple mass murder in support of a “political agenda”.

The author also points out another sobering fact:

“The Mumbai massacre also exposed the myth that arming the police force guarantees security. Sebastian D’Souza, a picture editor on the Mumbai Mirror who took some of the dramatic pictures of the assault on the Chhatrapati Shivaji railway station, was angered to find India’s armed police taking cover and apparently failing to engage the gunmen.”

I have great respect for many in law enforcement in the US. A neighboring county in Oregon (Clackamas) has a spectacular indoor pistol range run by the county Sheriff including marksmanship and practical pistol classes. Unfortunately even good cops can’t be everywhere at once and they can’t protect everyone. People are not, or should not be, sheep that require shepherds for protection. We must take some of that responsibility upon ourselves.

The author goes on to make that very point:

“. . .in Britain we have no more legal deterrent to prevent an armed assault than did the people of Mumbai, and individually we would be just as helpless as victims. The Mumbai massacre could happen in London tomorrow; but probably it could not have happened to Londoners 100 years ago.”

He goes on to cite an example from 1909 where Londoners used their own firearms to disrupt and bring down individuals attempting a robbery (who were fresh off an attempt to blow up the President of France). He also compares the growth of the “right to carry” movement in the United States and how our violent crime rates have plummeted.

It is clear that at least a few people in the UK recognize the scope of the mistake they have made as a people by throwing away their right to keep and bear arms. It falls to the United States, perhaps the last bastion of freedom in a darkening world, to show the rest of the world back to the light.

Until next time!

Still Don’t Believe Obama’s Anti-Second???

If the latest abomination doesn’t convince you, then I am forced to conclude that nothing short of the feds showing up at your home with confiscation papers in hand will. Let’s recap the situation so far:

Rahm Emanuel – soon to be Chief of Staff, Clinton point man on gun control.

Hillary Clinton – soon to be Secretary of State, avowed Second Amendment opponent, soon to have the power to negotiate our Second Amendment away through treaty with the UN.

Tom Daschle – soon to be Secretary of Health and Human Services, another avowed Second Amendment opponent, soon to have the power to declare firearms and ammunition (which contains lead!) a public health threat and attack them from that avenue.

Eric Holder – soon to be Attorney General, opposes the Heller decision and is a proponent of sweeping gun bans.

The clincher is the latest atrocity. Say you want to work in the White House, or for the Administration. There are several people on the left that are supporters of the Second Amendment. In fact, the only reason the Democrats were able to gain a majority in the House was by running socially conservative “blue dog” Democrats. One of the questions on the “White House Personnel Data Questionnaire” is:

"Do you or any members of your immediate family own a gun? If so, provide complete ownership and registration information. Has the registration ever lapsed? Please also describe how and by whom it is used and whether it has been the cause of any personal injuries or property damage."

First off, only five states of the Union have misguided and unconstitutional registration requirements. However, it is clear that Obama wants to make that questionable tactic, which has led to so much pain and suffering in the past in other parts of the world, the law of the land. Gun owners are clearly second class citizens to Obama, and if he has his way, they will be in the rest of the nation in short order.

It is time that law-abiding firearm owners stop taking these sorts of insults lying down. It is high time we reclaim our liberties and stop allowing the enemies of our Bill of Rights, or national sovereignty, and the freedoms we hold so dear – that so much American blood has been spilled to protect, to walk all over us. In the coming months I encourage every freedom loving American to not give a single inch to those who would shackle us with the chains of slavery in the name of “progress”.

Until next time!!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Department of the Interior Announces Final Firearms Policy Update

File this one under some “good news for a change”. In this news release, Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Fish and Wildlife and Parks Lyle Laverty announced the final updates to the Department of the Interior’s Firearms Policy. The new policy is:

The final rule, which updates existing regulations, would allow an individual to carry a concealed weapon in national parks and wildlife refuges if, and only if, the individual is authorized to carry a concealed weapon under state law in the state in which the national park or refuge is located.

This updated policy represents a huge win for the concealed carry community. I sincerely hope that this new policy will hold and will not be re-visited or rescinded by the incoming administration.

Until next time!!!

That Didn’t Take Long

No sooner does North Carolina become a “blue state” and the infringement of the Second Amendment begins. The Durham, N.C. city council is backing a law based on an Illinois law that would require a license to purchase ammunition. It’s becoming increasingly clear where the next battle lines in the fight to retain our Second Amendment rights will be drawn. If they can’t ban the firearms, they’ll go after ammunition as a “soft target”.

Hopefully saner heads will prevail in North Carolina, but it is becoming increasingly apparent that the extreme left is emboldened by the results of the 2008 general election and draconian firearms restrictions are once again on the table, a scant few months after the landmark Heller ruling.

I quite frankly find it unconscionable that Democratic Party has become a haven for those who would simply shred the Bill of Rights. Unfortunately the “blue dog” Democrats lack the political clout to influence the national party. The next few years promise to be pivotal in terms of firearm and Second Amendment legislation, and this author does not plan on giving a single inch without a fight.

Until next time!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Texas Legislator Proposes Concealed Carry on College Campuses

It looks like at least a few politicians are standing up for REAL “common sense” gun laws. Texas State Senator Jeff Wentworth plans to introduce legislation that would allow individuals with a valid concealed carry permit to carry while on campus. In light of the senseless tragedy at Virginia Tech, this is a good idea. One individual with a concealed carry permit could have ended that tragedy before it reached such epic proportions.

Predictably, those opposed to concealed carry and firearms in general are trying to play the fear card, with the party line being parroted by Texas A&M senior Darrin Barton:

"I don't believe that we should be putting firearms in the midst of students who are going through trauma and stress and situations that can push students to the limits."

Matthew Rogers of Texas A&M’s chapter of Students for Concealed Carry on Campus seems to present a more rational view:

"All we're asking is that you allow us to make that choice. If I can legally carry somewhere else, allow me to make the decision whether or not I want to carry here on campus... "

Even in Texas I expect the debate on this issue will be spirited. I sincerely hope that this legislation passes and becomes a model for other states.

Until next time!