Liberty is an inherently offensive lifestyle. Living in a free society guarantees that each one of us will see our most cherished principles and beliefs questioned and in some cases mocked. That psychic discomfort is the price we pay for basic civic peace. It's worth it. It's a pragmatic principle. Defend everyone else's rights, because if you don't there is no one to defend yours. -- MaxedOutMama

I don't just want gun rights... I want individual liberty, a culture of self-reliance....I want the whole bloody thing. -- Kim du Toit

The most glaring example of the cognitive dissonance on the left is the concept that human beings are inherently good, yet at the same time cannot be trusted with any kind of weapon, unless the magic fairy dust of government authority gets sprinkled upon them.-- Moshe Ben-David

The cult of the left believes that it is engaged in a great apocalyptic battle with corporations and industrialists for the ownership of the unthinking masses. Its acolytes see themselves as the individuals who have been "liberated" to think for themselves. They make choices. You however are just a member of the unthinking masses. You are not really a person, but only respond to the agendas of your corporate overlords. If you eat too much, it's because corporations make you eat. If you kill, it's because corporations encourage you to buy guns. You are not an individual. You are a social problem. -- Sultan Knish

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Boomershoot AAR

So, four days of driving for two days of shooting.  Was it worth it?

Youbetcherassitwas.

This post will be pic heavy, so everything else is under the fold.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Chains of Command

I just finished Marko Kloos' latest novel, Chains of Command. EXCELLENT book. He just keeps getting better. If you've not been reading his Frontlines series, I strongly recommend them.  Near-future military Sci-Fi written by someone who knows military life and can write it well.

Write faster, Marko.

Homeward Bound

I left the Konkolville Hotel at 5:50 this morning, drove into Orofino, checked the tire pressure (*wink*), and then headed South.

Just South of Twin Falls, what did I run into?  This:


I drove through this crap for 100 miles, then finally it switched back to rain.

Until I got near Ely, NV. It's doing this:


When I checked in at the hotel, I asked what the weather forecast was. It's supposed to snow until 11PM. The temperature currently is 34ºF and it's going to get colder. Who was it that thought going home through Ely was a good idea? And what the hell happened to Global Warming?

UPDATE: 8:30PM and it's not snowing. And warmer. Whew!

Saturday, April 23, 2016

When Even VOX Recognizes a Problem...

This piece has been making the rounds, "The smug style in American liberalism" by Emmett Rensin.  There's too much to quote and I recommend you read the whole thing, but I was struck by this passage:
A movement once fleshed out in union halls and little magazines shifted into universities and major press, from the center of the country to its cities and elite enclaves. Minority voters remained, but bereft of the material and social capital required to dominate elite decision-making, they were largely excluded from an agenda driven by the new Democratic core: the educated, the coastal, and the professional.
A few years ago I pulled a passage from a book, John Ringo's The Road to Damascus that I'd like to repeat here:
(The party) is composed of two tiers. The lower tier produces many outspoken members who make their demands known to the upper tier. The lower tier is derived from the inner-city population that serves as the base of the party. The lower tier's members are generally educated in public school systems and if they aspire to advanced training, they are educated in facilities provided by the state. This wing constitutes the majority of (the party's) membership, but contributes little or nothing to party theory or platform. It votes the party line and is rewarded with cash payments, subsidized housing, subsidized education, and occasional preferential employment in government positions. The lower tier provides only a handful of clearly token individuals allowed to serve in high offices.

The upper tier, which includes most of the party's management, virtually all the appointed and elected government officials, and all of the party's decision-makers, is drawn exclusively from suburban areas where wealth is a fundamental criterion for admittance as a resident. These party members are generally educated at private schools and attend private colleges. They are not affected by food-rationing schemes, income caps or taxation laws, as the legislation drafted and passed by members of their social group inevitably contains loopholes that effectively shelter their income and render them immune from unpleasant statues that restrict the lives of lower-tier party members and all nonparty citizens.

(The party) leadership recognizes that in return for supporting a seemingly populist agenda, they can obtain all the votes they require to remain in power. Even the most cursory analysis of their actions and attitudes, however, indicates that they are not populists but, in fact, are strong antipopulists who actively despise their voting base. This....is proven by their efforts to reduce public educational systems to a level most grade-school children (in other countries) have surpassed, with the excuse that this curriculum is all that the students can handle. They have made the inner-city population base totally dependent on the government, which they control.
Well, one more:
The smug style arose to answer these questions. It provided an answer so simple and so emotionally satisfying that its success was perhaps inevitable: the theory that conservatism, and particularly the kind embraced by those out there in the country, was not a political ideology at all.

The trouble is that stupid hicks don't know what's good for them. They're getting conned by right-wingers and tent revivalists until they believe all the lies that've made them so wrong. They don't know any better.
From the masthead of this blog, the quote from Sultan Knish:
The cult of the left believes that it is engaged in a great apocalyptic battle with corporations and industrialists for the ownership of the unthinking masses. Its acolytes see themselves as the individuals who have been "liberated" to think for themselves. They make choices. You however are just a member of the unthinking masses. You are not really a person, but only respond to the agendas of your corporate overlords. If you eat too much, it's because corporations make you eat. If you kill, it's because corporations encourage you to buy guns. You are not an individual. You are a social problem.
Self-realization from the Left? Too little, too late. I bet the piece gets memory-holed.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Two is One and One is None

And apparently two is none, if you don't check adequately first.

So as reported I've been on my way to Boomershoot.  I departed from my hotel in Brigham City at 07:00 local time (06:00 Pacific Standard Time), and Google Maps, being a bi%$h, routed me through the tiny Idaho burg of Weiser (pronounced Weezer).  Just outside of Weiser, this happened:


I'd had (I thought) all the tires checked for proper inflation on Wednesday before I left, but apparently I hit some road debris and that was that. No warning until the tire just let go. So, off on the shoulder I jack up the truck and pull the bad one off, then I drop the (supposed) spare from under the bed:


FML. At least I had cell service. I called State Farm for roadside assistance. Took half an hour to get them to figure out where I was and dispatch a tow truck. Text message said they'd be about 90 minutes out. Wonderful.

Then a local Sheriff's deputy pulled in behind me, scoped out the situation, and offered to take me and my tire back into Weiser to the closest tire shop. I cancelled the tow, and off we went. Two hours, two tires and $470 later, the new spare is the old driver's side rear, and I have a new set of Cooper tires on the back axle:


Finally got into Orofino about 5:45 Pacific time, but I'm ready for Boomershoot now!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Iowahawk is a National Treasure


Tam says it best:
Apparently the Nazi Anime Fan wing of the internet has its jimmies thoroughly rustled by the fact that the genocidal founder of the Democrat party has been replaced on the Twenty by a gun-toting African-American Republican woman. And the Pinko Identity Politics wing of the internet doesn't even realize that's what just happened.

This is like sipping a martini made out of hippie and Nazi tears, shaken AND stirred.
And this is the BEST suggestion for the $20 bill I've EVER seen:

 photo Harriet_Tubman_Terminator.jpg
Trigger warning! TRIGGER WARNING!!

Monday, April 18, 2016

Boomershoot Update

Made my last pre-Boomershoot trip to the range this morning.  Seems during my previous testing with the .300 Win Mag I managed to shoot my scope loose.  Red Loctite applied, torqued to spec, and I'm now dialed in at 500 meters.  Took the target AR and ran a magazine through it at 400 meters.  It's ready to go.  Still need to load some .260 Remington for the Power Tool™.  I'll have to sight that in on Saturday.  I think I'm going to use it on the 385 yard berm only, though.  Last time I scared a lot of targets with the pistol at 640 yards, but I think I only hit one.

I have someone sharing Position 26 with me now, so I've got a spotter and so does he.  I head out for Orofino on Thursday.  I'm planning to stop in Ogden, UT Thursday night, which should put me in Orofino on Friday afternoon.  I'm doing Field Fire and High Intensity on Saturday, and then the event itself on Sunday, departing Monday morning for the drive home.  Haven't picked a route back yet.

I've got a 5'x7' canopy and some tarp sidewalls to keep the wind and (probably) rain as much at bay as possible, and a half-inch plywood sheet for a ground surface to put my chair and table on.  Weather report says cool and probably rainy Saturday, cooler and maybe rainy Sunday.  Thankfully the wind is supposed to be 10 mph or less.

Friday, April 15, 2016

In Memoriam



My mother passed away on this day one year ago. In honor of her memory, I'm reposting the eulogy I gave at her memorial service:

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Apropriate This!

Bill Whittle's latest:


And if you are a member of PJ Media, you might want to join BillWhittle.com. PJTV is shutting down all future production. Klavan, Scott Ott and Steven Green need a new home. Bill gets a lot of his income, or did, from PJTV.

I've been a member for a couple of years now. You can join here.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Received via Email

I took down my Rebel flag (which you can't buy on eBay any more), tossed the ‘Don't Tread on Me’ flag and peeled the NRA sticker off the front door. I gave the pit bull to my mother-in-law and stored my AR-15. I disconnected my home alarm system and quit the wimpy Neighborhood Watch.

Instead of all that silly stuff I bought two Pakistani flags and put one at each corner of the front yard. Then I purchased the black flag of ISIS (which you CAN buy on eBay) and ran it up the flag pole.

Now, the local police, sheriff, FBI, CIA, NSA, Homeland Security, Secret Service and other agencies are all watching my house 24/7. I've NEVER felt safer and I'm saving $69.95 a month that ADT used to charge me.

Plus, I bought burkas for my family. When we shop or travel everyone moves out of the way and security can't pat us down.

Safe at last!

Is America getting greater every day or what?
Kinda reminds me of the old story where a guy is woken by his wife who says that she hears a noise. Turns out, there are a couple of people outside in his tool shed ripping him off. He dials 911 and tells the dispatcher that his tool shed is being burgled as they speak. The dispatcher tells him that they can't have a patrol car there in less than 45 minutes. "Forty-five minutes! They'll be long gone by then!" he exclaims. "Never mind, I'll take care of it."

A few minutes later he dials 911 again, and gets the same dispatcher. "You don't need to send a patrol car anymore, but you do need to send an ambulance. I shot those guys."

Three minutes later a patrol car comes screaming to a halt in the driveway and the burglars are apprehended as they come scrambling out of the shed.

One irate cop accosts the homeowner: "I thought you said you'd shot them!" The homeowner responded, "I thought you couldn't get here in less than 45 minutes!"

Tuesday, April 05, 2016

"Give Me Your Shit, Or I Will Kill You."

The Season Six final episode of The Walking Dead introduced the character Negan, and in that scene (see clip below) he utters these words at just after the 2-minute mark:
Give me your shit, or I will kill you.
And at about 3:20 he says:
You are not safe. Not even close. In fact, you are pegged. More pegged if you don't do what I want, and what I want is half your shit.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is government distilled to its very essence: You are not safe. Give me the portion of your shit that I want, or I will kill you or have you killed.  And I won't take it all, because if you're dead I can't keep taking your shit.

You'll note that expressing this fact will result in a lot of protest, objecting that that is not the role of government at all!

Bullshit.  Thank you government-schooling for obscuring the raw facts, for whitewashing reality.

The earliest form of government is the tribe, sort of an extended family, but tribes have a HMFIC, and that HMFIC can decide to strand you, kill you outright, or banish you to near-certain death.  Each step up the ladder of government complexity has, as its base, the tax collectors who will take your shit or kill you if you don't pay up.

"But might doesn't make right!" you may object.  No, it doesn't.  Might makes right irrelevant, though.

Coercion as a founding principle of government works, because people want to feel safe more than they want to be free.  Here's another clip:


Loki states,
It's the unspoken truth of humanity, that you crave subjugation.  The bright lure of freedom diminishes life's joy in a mad scramble for power, for identity.  You were made to be ruled.  In the end, you will always kneel.
Not to put too fine a point on it, but "Oh, bullshit." But the man who stands to face him? He does serve as an object lesson. Just as Negan will kill one of Rick's people to cow the rest into submission, Loki attempts to kill the man who opposes him to accomplish the same end - rule by fear.

It isn't that humanity is "made to be ruled," it's that humanity contains rat-bastards willing to kill TO rule. And they will recruit followers who will kill at their instruction, and those followers will kill anyone who opposes them. Recent examples: Saddam Hussein & Sons, North Korea's Kim family dynasty, Robert Mugabe, etc. History is replete with examples.  In fact, it is only historically recently that such rat-bastards have been displaced with democratic forms of government, and as I wrote in 2004's Those Without Swords Can Still Die Upon Them, I believe that the reason for this is in large part due to the firearm.  While watching that last episode of The Walking Dead, I kept asking myself, "What happens if someone blows Negan's head off?"  His is a cult of personality.  Cut the head off the snake, who takes over?

As I also said in Those Without Swords, the ability to reason and the ability to exchange ideas leads to a belief in freedom, one shared among people.  But only if those people are armed do they have a chance to break out of rule by fear.  It's not a given, but it's a chance.

But one thing that people need to understand is - at its base - government is "give me what I want, or I will kill you."  We forget that at our peril.

And April 15 is fast approaching.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Quora and the Rights Debate (Updated & Bumped)

So, over at Quora someone asked, What would you do if guns became illegal in the US? I responded:
As the saying goes, "When guns are outlawed, only the government and outlaws will have guns."

There's another saying: "After the first felony, the rest are free."

But there's an even more appropriate saying: "...an act of the Legislature repugnant to the Constitution is void." (Marbury v. Madison, 1803) And yes, I believe I understand what is and isn't "repugnant to the Constitution," and more importantly, I have the right to make that judgement.
That drew this comment:
I agree with most of what you have written Kevin, right up to the end. You DON'T have a right to make that judgment. That decision is reserved for the courts and until such time as a lawfully passed law has been approved, it is the law of the land. Once the courts declare it unconstitutional, then it is no longer a law.

This is the whole scenario with the wackadoos out at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, and with the Bundys in Nevada. You are not free to interpret the Constitution nor the laws in any way you choose...
To which I replied:
"You DON'T have a right to make that judgment. That decision is reserved for the courts and until such time as a lawfully passed law has been approved, it is the law of the land. Once the courts declare it unconstitutional, then it is no longer a law."

Here I'll quote Judge Alex Kozinski of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals:

"The Second Amendment is a doomsday provision, one designed for those exceptionally rare circumstances where all other rights have failed - where the government refuses to stand for reelection and silences those who protest; where courts have lost the courage to oppose, or can find no one to enforce their decrees. However improbable these contingencies may seem today, facing them unprepared is a mistake a free people get to make only once."

If I wait for "the courts to declare it unconstitutional" I would already be disarmed.

Fuck. That.
The response?
Yeah sorry Kevin....didn't realize you were part of the tin foil hat crowd. Please just nevermind.
You know me, I couldn't stop there:
No, not the tinfoil hat crowd. They think Armageddon is imminent. I'm with the tinfoil yarmulke crowd. We don't think it likely, (see "exceptionally rare circumstances" above) but we also don't consider it impossible. We've read history.
Apparently he wasn't finished either:
LOL...OK, poor analogy on my part !

But while I recognize that laws can be unconstitutional, PEOPLE don't get to decide that. That is the purpose of the court system...
So I decided to take him to school:
Yes, PEOPLE do. As law professor Mike O'Shea put it, "So the Constitution says Roe, but it doesn't say I have the right to keep a gun to defend my home, huh?"

The court system is made up of PEOPLE. People we should hold to a higher standard, but people nonetheless. Have you ever READ any court decisions? Here's another of my favorite Kozinski quotes:

"Judges know very well how to read the Constitution broadly when they are sympathetic to the right being asserted. We have held, without much ado, that “speech, or...the press” also means the Internet...and that "persons, houses, papers, and effects" also means public telephone booths....When a particular right comports especially well with our notions of good social policy, we build magnificent legal edifices on elliptical constitutional phrases - or even the white spaces between lines of constitutional text. But, as the panel amply demonstrates, when we're none too keen on a particular constitutional guarantee, we can be equally ingenious in burying language that is incontrovertibly there.

"It is wrong to use some constitutional provisions as springboards for major social change while treating others like senile relatives to be cooped up in a nursing home until they quit annoying us. As guardians of the Constitution, we must be consistent in interpreting its provisions. If we adopt a jurisprudence sympathetic to individual rights, we must give broad compass to all constitutional provisions that protect individuals from tyranny. If we take a more statist approach, we must give all such provisions narrow scope. Expanding some to gargantuan proportions while discarding others like a crumpled gum wrapper is not faithfully applying the Constitution; it's using our power as federal judges to constitutionalize our personal preferences.
"

What you're advocating is surrender to authority. You've abandoned your responsibility as a citizen to understand and defend your rights "against all enemies, foreign and domestic" when you insist that we're just supposed to accept what five black-robed officials on a panel decide. You can read, study, and understand what you've been promised by the system that was set up to protect those rights yourself.

Your argument boils down to "You're not qualified!"

Like hell we're not.
That got him warmed up:
Not a question of "qualified" Kevin. It is a question of what our Constitution says is how our government works. You don't have to like the Roe vs. Wade decision anymore than I like the Heller decision. But those are the law of the land now since they are the decisions of the SUPREME Court. I capitalize that for a reason, because it is the ULTIMATE decider and serves as a check on the Legislative and Executive Branches.

Kozinski can write whatever he wants to, just like you or I can. The difference is that his writings nor yours or mine carry any legal weight. If you want to change the Constitution to make the way the US government operates different, that is fine and there is a procedure for amending it that is clearly laid out in the document itself. But as a citizen of this country, you are governed by the laws passed in your state and by the federal government. No place in any of those laws does it say you get to interpret the laws as you personally see fit.

"What you're advocating is surrender to authority". Yes, that is exactly what living in a country is all about. We have a common system of laws that supposedly apply equally to call citizens and visitors. You don't get to make up your own laws, nor disregard those made up by the governments who govern where you are.

Your last paragraph is exactly what the Cliven Bundy's and LaVoy Finicums of the world believe. "The law doesn't apply to me if I don't agree with it". Well, YES IT DOES! If you don't like it, then there is a procedure for changing the laws of this country and you need to get a majority of the people to support the changes you want to make. This is a democracy on some levels and a republic on others. Why are you willing to argue about your individual rights, while completely ignoring the process by which you were granted those rights. The true disconnect is when people (and that would include you in this discussion) think they get to define their own rights as being different from that which others believe them to be. That is the purpose of the court system...to make sure we are all on the same page as to what is and what isn't acceptable. You don't get to make that call unfortunately, no matter how much you may not like it.
Not deterred, I fired back:
"You don't get to make up your own laws, nor disregard those made up by the governments who govern where you are."

Do you routinely drive faster than the posted speed limit? Are you aware that, most likely, you commit Three Felonies a Day?

"Why are you willing to argue about your individual rights, while completely ignoring the process by which you were granted those rights."

See, that's what defines the difference between our worldviews. I wasn't granted anything. I'm supposed to be living under a government established with the duty to protect the rights I have simply by existing.

How's that working out? Rand's Atlas Shrugged and Orwell's 1984 were supposed to be warnings, not instruction manuals.

"The true disconnect is when people (and that would include you in this discussion) think they get to define their own rights as being different from that which others believe them to be."

Now here we are somewhat in agreement. I've spent a lot of time thinking about and writing about rights, and at one point I wrote:

A "right" is what the majority of a society believes it is.

To that, however, I added this:

What good is a "right to keep and bear arms" if it gets you put in jail? What good is a "right to keep and bear arms" if using a firearm to defend yourself or someone else results in the loss of your freedom, or at least your property? What good is a "right to keep and bear arms" when you live in a city that denies you the ability to keep a gun in your home for self protection?

This is a battle for public opinion, make no mistake.

It is a battle the powerful and their useful idiots have been winning.

Your rights are meaningless when the system under which you live does not recognize them. Or worse, scorns them.

If you want to keep your rights, it is up to YOU to fight for them. Liberty is NEVER unalienable. You must always fight for it.

"If you will not fight for right when you can easily win without blood shed; if you will not fight when your victory is sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance of survival. There may even be a worse case. You may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves." - Winston Churchill

Welcome to the battle for public opinion. We appear to be on different sides.
That put him off:
Thanks for the dialog. Speeding is not a felony, and as soon as you started quoting Ayn Rand that ended my interest in continuing the discussion. Keep fighting the good fight.
But I wasn't done yet:
Point of fact: I didn't "quote" Rand. I gave the title of one of her books, along with the title of one of Orwell's. With respect to Rand, I like this quote (about, not by her):

"Perhaps the biggest mistake an intellectual can make is to try to parlay his one brilliant insight into a unified theory of existence. Ayn Rand made this mistake with Objectivism. Objectivism was useful for thinking in certain limited realms, but Rand sought to apply Objectivist thinking to every aspect of the human experience, including love. The result is a sterile philosophical landscape, extending out of sight in all directions.Tellingly, Rand was unable to live according to her ideals. This is part of what makes Rand so disagreeable; the almost hysterical denial of subjectivity's inevitable, essential role in our lives. And it makes her not only disagreeable, but wrong."

The fact that you reacted so viscerally to the mere mention of her name says more about you than about me.

Now I will quote Rand so you can feel justified in abandoning the dialog:

"The smallest minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities."
To which he replied:
Kevin, we just see the world very differently and arguing about that on Quora does neither of us any good. The title of this whole thread was "What would you do if guns became illegal in the US". In order for that to happen, there would need to be a constitutional amendment and that requires a 2/3 vote of the states, so I don't see that happening.

We obviously disagree on the role of the courts in interpreting the constitution and the laws passed by the legislative branches of government. That's fine. We are each entitled to our own beliefs.

My concern is with people who somehow view our government as evil and restricting their freedom. The USA is one of the freest places on the planet. I believe that in my heart. If you don't, then so be it, again, your choice, but I don't know what individual rights you believe you are not getting in this country.

Good luck and again, thanks for the dialog.
One more final parting shot by me:
"Kevin, we just see the world very differently and arguing about that on Quora does neither of us any good."

Odd, I thought that was what the internet was for!


;-)

"My concern is with people who somehow view our government as evil and restricting their freedom."

You haven't studied history much, have you? I don't view our government as evil and restricting of freedom, I view all government as evil and restricting of freedom. I share that opinion with Thomas Paine:

"Society in every state is a blessing, but government even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one; for when we suffer, or are exposed to the same miseries by a government, which we might expect in a country without government, our calamity is heightened by reflecting that we furnish the means by which we suffer..."

However, I am not an anarchist - note the qualifier that government is a necessary evil.

"The USA is one of the freest places on the planet. I believe that in my heart."

So do I. But as a friend asked once, "When was the last time you built a bonfire on a beach, openly drank a beer and the presence of a policeman was absolutely no cause for concern? Hmmm?"

I am also constantly reminded of John Philpot Curran's warning:

"The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt."

I'm an atheist, but the sentiment rings true.

"...I don't know what individual rights you believe you are not getting in this country."

It's not the ones I'm not getting, it's the ones I have I'm fighting to ensure I don't lose. Ask the (former) residents of New London, CT about their property rights. Ask the Tea Party victims of the IRS about their free speech rights. Look into the abrogation of your 4th Amendment rights of protection against unreasonable search and seizure with respect to vehicle searches and "asset forfeiture." Read Glenn Reynold's Columbia Law review piece Ham Sandwich Nation: Due Process When Everything Is a Crime. Speeding isn't a felony, no, but study the expansion of felony law. Were you aware that in some jurisdictions walking out of a restaurant on a $25 check is a felony? Or staying in a multiplex cinema and catching a second feature without paying for it?

You are aware of the loss of rights that goes along with a felony conviction, aren't you?

Yes, the USA is one of the freest places on the planet, but government is power concentrated in the hands of a few, and power corrupts and attracts the already corrupt. Ignore that fact at your peril.

Supreme Court Justice Learned Hand once wrote, "Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women; when it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can save it. While it lies there, it needs no constitution, no law, no court to save it."

Does arguing on Quora do any good? Maybe not for you, but I'm not writing to convert you. I'm writing so that others who read these threads might get exposed to ideas that they had not previously considered, and that might actually get them to think and study for themselves.

THAT is what I think the Internet is really for.
I don't expect him to reply again, but you never know.

UPDATE, 3/27:  There were some other commenters, which started this final thread:
You seem very happy to subject yourself to the authority of others.

Interesting, but not applicable to anyone else.
To which our respondent replied:
I subject myself to the legally passed laws of the Republic Robert. It is the nut jobs out there who seem to think they have the ability/right/duty or whatever else you want to call it to selectively decide which laws apply to them or must be followed.
Given that opening, I asked him:
So Rosa Parks should have stayed in the back of the bus, then. Check. And I assume you've never heard of Jury Nullification?
He seemed surprised by this:
What does this have to do with Rosa Parks or Jury Nullification? Nevermind...forget that I asked...
But I wasn't letting him off that easily.
No, no! Let's pursue this logic train all the way to the end of the tracks! You stated that you subject yourself to the legally passed laws of the Republic. The law that forced Rosa Parks to the back of the bus was one such law. You're stating that she should have obeyed it - that she had no ability/right/duty to "selectively decide" that it didn't apply to her, and that when brought to trial the jury didn't have the ability/right/duty to decide - in the face of the law and the judge - to acquit her because she had clearly violated the legally passed law, right? That we mere individual citizens don't have the RIGHT to judge those laws for ourselves.

I can draw no other conclusion from your statements. YOU can draw no other conclusion from your statements. Rosa Parks had no right to violate the legally passed law of the Republic. Period.

Or explain to me how I'm misinterpreting your position.
This was ignored or unseen until someone else asked him about it later, and I pointed him to the question.

You can almost hear the Cognitive Dissonance grinding between his ears:
Kevin, I have no interest in continuing this discussion with you so please stop posting responses to me. Civil disobedience is not a Constitutional issue and that is where this conversation began. Again, thank you for the dialog, but I do not wish to hear from you further.
Hell, I thought what were discussing WAS civil disobedience. Here's another place to quote someone quotable - Winston Churchill: "Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened." Anyway, I've apparently hurt his brain enough, and he's served his illustrative purpose, so I let him go:
I think you just answered my question, so thank you, and I'll leave you to yourself.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Bill Whittle - Here Be Dragons

Since today is Presidential Primary day in Arizona, here's Bill Whittle discussing the current election debacle:


Sunday, March 20, 2016

Boomershoot Update

So Boomershoot is right at a month away.  I've picked the load I'm going to be using in my .300 Win Mag, but I've still got some issues with the rifle itself to iron out - scope adjustments and Loctite, mostly.

I still need a spotter/co-shooter for Position 26.  I'll be traveling from Tucson through Salt Lake City on April 21, arriving in Orofino, ID on the 22nd, departing on the 25th.  Anybody want to join me?

Monday, March 14, 2016

"For Every Complex Problem...

...there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." - H.L. Mencken

The latest is touted in an article in New ScientistCould three gun laws cut US firearm deaths by 90 per cent? What are these three laws?

  • Close the "gun show loophole" - that is, ban private sales of firearms.
  • Require background checks on ammunition purchases. 
  • Use "'fingerprinting' technology that allows a bullet to be traced back to the weapon that fired it."

The article insists that a study performed "with no funding" by Bindu Kalesan, adjunct Assistant Professor of Epidemiology at Boston University and her colleagues came up with this list after collecting
data on firearm deaths between 2008 and 2010, as well as information from 25 state laws and unemployment levels.
While most laws they studied appeared to be ineffective:
Three laws did seem to lower gun deaths, however. Extending background checks to cover the purchase of ammunition, bringing in background checks on private sales, and using “fingerprinting” technology that allows a bullet to be traced to the weapon that fired it, all seem to be linked to a significant reduction in mortality. “If we implemented these laws at the federal level, firearm mortality would drop by 90 per cent,” says Kalesan.
Wow. That's quite a prediction!

So far, to my knowledge, only the first law has been implemented anywhere. Background checks on ammo purchases? Where? I know some jurisdictions (*cough*Illinois*cough*) require a Firearm Owner ID card for ammo purchases, but a background check on each purchase?  People freak out now when they hear someone has a thousand rounds of anything.  Implement this law and that would be the minimum purchase by most, just to alleviate the hassle. And the only attempts at "ballistic fingerprinting" have been on cartridge cases from handguns, and they've been an abject failure.  Microstamping and serial numbers on projectiles?  Not bloody likely.

Let's look at these in turn.

  • No more private sales
How do you go about enforcing that?  We have upwards of 300 million privately owned firearms, the vast majority of which are not registered with any governmental body.  Nobody knows who owns what.  Just making it illegal to give or sell your Smith & Wesson Model 19 to your cousin doesn't mean it isn't going to happen.  Who would know the difference?  If the .gov doesn't know what you own, how could they know you sold it?

  • Background checks for ammunition purchases
This one is what I like to call "academic overconfidence." It's obvious these people have no idea the sheer volume of ammunition sales that occur in the U.S. Annual production of .22 Long Rifle ammo alone is estimated to be in excess of two BILLION rounds.  Seen much on store shelves recently?  There is a Federal Excise tax on all firearms and ammunition sold in the U.S.  See this graphic for some feel of the scale of the problem:

 photo Excise Tax.jpg

And that tax is on the wholesale price, not the retail price. We keep hearing that there have been record numbers of NICS (FBI background) checks month-on-month and they want to add ammunition to this already nearly overwhelmed system?  What about reloading components? And the same problem as the "no private sales" above exists - how do you know that someone didn't just resell the ammo? How are they supposed to prove that they didn't take it out in the desert and shoot it all?

And, finally,
  • "Ballistic Fingerprinting"
I'm not going to rehash my previous technical dissertation on why the IBIS system doesn't (and can't) work, but this is another of those technological pipe-dreams that academics just love. Short version:
  1. There's already 300+ million guns in circulation that there are no "ballistic fingerprints" for.
  2. "Ballistic fingerprints" - that the Brady Center insists are "unique as human fingerprints" - aren't. 
  3. Under ideal laboratory conditions the system fails to identify the firearm the cartridge was fired from the overwhelming majority of the time.  In the real world, it has never worked.
  4. Even if you could get a match, how do you find the gun if you don't know who owns it?
What do these three proposals require to have any hope of success, much less a 90% reduction in gunshot mortality?

Universal firearm registration - the absolute prerequisite to eventual confiscation.  You'll note that "registration" isn't mentioned in the article.

You have to wonder why that is, don't you?

Thursday, March 03, 2016

Wednesday, March 02, 2016

Juxtaposition

Seen on Facebook:

 photo Juxtaposition.jpg

"...what country can preserve its liberties..."

...if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance? - Thomas Jefferson
Not exactly "the blood of patriots & tyrants," but I like the cut of this man's jib:
Greenwood man hangs trailer from tree in front yard to prove point

GREENWOOD, Ind. (Mar. 2, 2016)-- Greenwood councilors will hold a public hearing Wednesday evening to hear about a property rights issue after a resident decided to hang his utility trailer from a tree to make a point.

Claude Tate suspended his trailer from a tree in his front yard to express his frustration with a City ordinance.

Last year, he received a notice from the City telling him he was violating an ordinance by parking his trailer in his yard. That ordinance prohibits residents from parking trailers or RVs on top of grass.

"The City can tell you what you can and can't have in your yard," said Tate. "I find that outrageous and oppressive!"

Instead, Tate was told he'd have to put pavement down if he wanted to park in his backyard; a task that would cost hundreds of dollars out of pocket.

So he hung up his trailer just high enough above the grass to make a point.

"What you do in your backyard oughta be your own business."