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

Friday, August 29, 2014

Inflation

So at lunch today I ran by my favorite Merchant O'Death's place of work and picked up some powder. They'd just gotten in a shipment of about a hundred pounds of various types (still no Unique - which at this point should just be renamed "Unavailable"), and I'd had him set me aside a bit: three pounds of H110 and one of Accurate 4064.

Remember when powder was around $20 a pound? Yeah, so do I. Four pounds of powder set me back a little over $116 including tax.

Ouch.

A few years ago, I did a post on the basics of reloading with a list of recommended materials.  I thought this would be a good time to review that and see just how much things have changed.  

Originally I recommended the Lee Anniversary Kit, which consisted of their Challenger "O"-press, powder measure, powder scale, reloading manual, priming tool and (most) shell holders.  It was $89.99.  That particular kit is no longer available, but the current one is the Challenger Breech Lock Anniversary Kit, which at $126.99 contains:

  • Lee Breech Lock Challenger Single Stage Press
  • 1-Breech Lock Die Bushing
  • Lee Large and Small Safety Prime
  • Lee Cutter and Lock Stud
  • Lee Perfect Powder Measure
  • Lee Chamfer Tool
  • Lee Primer Pocket Cleaner
  • Lee Safety Powder Scale
  • Lee Powder funnel
  • 2 oz Tube Lee Resizing Case Lube

Next up came dies, and I again recommended an all-Lee lineup:

Carbide .38/357 4-die set: $30.99 $41.99
Carbide .45ACP 4-die set: $21.99 $41.99
Steel .30 Luger 3-die set: $20.99 $30.49
.22-250 3-die set: $24.99 $30.99
.243 Winchester 3-die set: $24.99 $30.99
.308 Winchester 3-die set: $24.99 $30.99
.30-06 3-die set: $24.99 $30.99
.30 Carbine carbide 3-die set: $30.79 $38.49

Next up was lube. The Lee kit above has their lube, but I recommended a can of Hornady's One Shot spray lube. For the sake of economy, I'll leave it off this list.

I recommended a steel dial caliper micrometer: Still $25.99

I recommended a Hornady universal reloading tray: $4.79 $8.99

In the article I stated that a minimum of TWO reloading manuals should be on hand. The Lee Anniversary kit had one in it originally, but not now. The Speer manual at that time cost $26.99. Now it's $29.99, and the Lee manual is another $21.99

Then there was powder and primers for all the calibers we were buying dies for. Powder is per pound, primer pricing is per thousand.

IMR 4064: $18.99 $25.87
Winchester 296: $17.99 $21.60
Winchester 231: $17.49 $21.04

CCI Small Pistol: $21.99 $26.99
CCI Large Pistol: $21.49 $31.49
CCI Small Rifle: $22.49 $31.49
CCI Large Rifle: $22.99 $31.49

And then there was case prep, cleaning & miscellaneous:

Iosso Case Cleaning Kit
: $14.99 $16.79
I suggested a primer pocket cleaner and chamfer and deburring tool, but those are now included in the Lee Anniversary kit.
Safety Glasses: $8.99 $4.49 - that's the only item to reduce in price.

So in 2007 all the materials you'd need to start reloading for eight different calibers, with the exception of projectiles, was $542.76.  Today it would be $702.12, an increase of 29.4%.  Powder has gone up almost a third on average, if you can find it.

I'm glad I didn't record bullet pricing back then.  I don't think I want to know how much THAT'S gone up.

The Republic of Bill

Bill Whittle's latest Firewall:


Where do I sign up?

Quote of the Day - Sarah Hoyt Edition

I’ve said before that I became an American by reading Heinlein books.  This is true at least to an extent, though I’d be at a loss to explain the process to you.  I mean, if you knew how to do that, book by book, chipping away, so someone starts out wondering what’s wrong with all those Americans who don’t like taxes (don’t they know taxes are civilization?  And have always existed) and ends up thinking getting a Don’t Tread On Me tattoo is a brilliant idea, even while immersed in a socialist, communitarian system, we’d have no problems.  We’d just use “the process.” - Ungovernable — a blast from the past post from December 2012
And I've said before that my personal philosophy was heavily influenced by three authors: Robert A. Heinlein, Robert B. Parker and John D. MacDonald.  Interesting that it works on people in other countries, too.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

One Week to the Rendezvous!

OK, we're just one week away from the Ninth Annual Gun Blogger Rendezvous.  Have you made your hotel reservations?  Mailed in your registration?  Here's the schedule thus far:

Wednesday, September 3rd

6:15 PM. For those arriving on Wednesday, dinner at the El Dorado Buffet Restaurant. The El Dorado is part of the same giant casino complex as the Silver Legacy and the Circus Circus. The El Dorado Buffet is at one end of the complex. The Silver Legacy is in the middle, and the Circus Circus is on the opposite end.


Thursday, September 4th

8:30 AM. Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality Room for one of the restaurants for breakfast.
1:15 PM. Leave the Hospitality Room to car pool to Scheels.
2:00 PM – 3:30 PM. Guided tour of Scheels Sporting Goods and browsing/shopping. Buy ammo? Pick up munchies and soft drinks on way back to hotel.
6:00 PM. Leave the Hospitality Room to go to dinner. Location to be determined later.
Thursday Evening until midnight: Refreshments and conversation at the Silver Legacy Hospitality room. Bring your own refreshments and munchies.

Friday, September 5th

8:00 AM. NRA Sponsored breakfast in our Hospitality room. Catherine Mortensen of the NRA will address the group, bringing us up to speed on what's going on, and what's on the horizon concerning the NRA and our 2nd. Amendment rights.
9:00 AM. Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality room to car pool up and head out to the Washoe County Shooting Facility, the Pyramid range for rifle and pistol target shooting out to 900 yards.
9:45 AM – 2:00 PM. At the range.
4:00 PM – 5:45 PM. Show-N-Tell at the Silver Legacy Hospitality room. Manufacturers and show new stuff, and attendees show neat things too!
6:00 PM. Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality room to go to Dos Gecko’s Mexican Restaurant for dinner. A 3 minute walk from Hospitality Room.
7:15 PM. (Approx) Brian Ciyou from Gunlawsbystate.com, will talk to us, and other industry, shooting sports, and legal aspect folks will follow.
Friday Evening until midnight: Refreshments and conversation at the Silver Legacy Hospitality room. Bring your own refreshments and munchies.

Saturday, September 6th

8:00 AM. Lucky Gunner sponsored Breakfast in the Silver Legacy Hospitality room.
9:00 AM. Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality room to car pool up and head out to the Washoe County Shooting Facility, Western Nevada Pistol League Action Pistol bays at the Pyramid range for an introduction to International Steel Shooting Association Action Pistol shooting, and more.
9:45 AM – 2:00 PM. At the range.
5:00 PM – 6 PM. Short presentation by the National Shooting Sports Foundation. possible other short presentations, and information on the Honored American Veterans Afield Charity.
6:00 PM. NSSF all you can eat pizza feed at the Silver Legacy Hospitality room. After dinner will be the fund raiser raffle for HAVA and the drawings for the door prizes.
Saturday Evening until Midnight: Refreshments and conversation at the Silver Legacy Hospitality room. Bring your own refreshments and munchies.


Sunday, September 7th

8:00 AM. Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality room for one of the restaurants for breakfast.
9:15 AM. Leave the Silver Legacy Hospitality room to car pool up and head out to the U.S. Firearms Academy for some digital live scenario shooting fun. We will also visit Reno Guns, and BattleBorn, which are next door.
9:45 AM– NOON. Digital scenario shooting and shoot house.

Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

This is Why I don't do Überposts Anymore

Others do it so I don't have to.   The blog Watchdogs of our Freedom does one I would be proud to have written:  Detroit Shoots Back:  How the Motor City Took Back its Streets and Outdrew the Left. With such bon mots as:
In Godbee’s defense, his obtuseness is endemic to the entire species of new-wave police commissioners and chiefs, who, unlike cops on the beat, tend to be political appointees who rose to prominence by osculating the establishment’s fundament.
And:
Meaning no disrespect whatever to Mrs. Moorer, whose candor is refreshing, but a team player would have insisted that her son was Christmas Caroling and produced a photo of him at around age 7, hugging Santa. Some people just can’t get with the program.
And:
While leftist “experts” explained on CNN and MSNBC that Craig’s advocacy of widespread gun ownership would do nothing to curtail crime, robbery fell 37% in Detroit while businesses reported 22% fewer break-ins, and the city recorded a 30% drop in carjackings. Police also report that nonfatal shootings, aggravated assaults, and sexual assaults were all markedly reduced.
Go, read. Worth your time.


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Will

She has it.  "Never say the word 'can't.' "


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Quote of the Day - GOF Edition

Reader and commenter Grumpy Old Fart left this, in its entirety, as a comment to Bill Whittle's Afterburner piece on the mess in Ferguson, MO:
I've said it here and elsewhere, but I'll say it again:

Democrats are the party of hatred, envy and bigotry. It's the basis of everything they do, and they use it at every opportunity.

If you disagree with them on race, it's because you're white (even if you're Thomas Sowell, Mia Love or Marco Rubio). If you disagree with them about women's rights, it's because you're a man (even if you're Michelle Malkin, Ann Coulter or Megyn Kelly). If you disagree with them about gay rights, it's because you're straight (even if you're Liz Cheney, Jimmy LaSalvia or Chris Barron). They're not interested in empowering minorities, they're only interested in punishing white people. They're not interested in empowering women, they're only interested in punishing men. They're not interested in empowering gays, they're only interested in punishing straight people. They're not interested in helping people become successful, they're only interested in punishing the wealthy. They don't want justice, in fact they work hard to subvert it... because they pander to those who want revenge.

Of course, they'll always claim the opposite. But it isn't the Republicans who wanted a Supreme Court Justice who thought she could do better than others because she wasn't white. It isn't the Republicans who called a black politician a "house nigger." It isn't the Republicans who coined the term "white hispanic." It's not the Republicans who TO THIS DAY call Justice Thomas an "Uncle Tom." It's not the Republicans who delight in "Teabagger" as a derogatory term.

It isn't the Republicans who are proud to be associated with openly racist organizations like the NAACP and La Raza. It wasn't the Republicans who proudly put a sexual predator in the White House in the 90s. It wasn't the Republicans who were proud of voting for our current President because he's not white. It's not the Republicans who have fought tooth and nail to make it easy to get on welfare, but hard to succeed in business.

Democrats have spent the last several years calling Republicans "terrorists," "suicide bombers" and "hostage takers." But virtually every supporter of Hamas in America is a Democrat.

I'm an agnostic, and yes, I find it annoying when Christians act as if I'm some poor deluded soul who must be saved from his own stupidity. But at least Christians treat me as if I am a human being, and by their lights they are trying to help me. They'll try to change my mind, but they don't try to have me arrested or outcast when I don't. The anti-Christian left thinks I should be punished for daring to disagree with them, IF they concede that I should be allowed to exist AT ALL.

"Diversity" my hairy butt. I want my doctor, my lawyer, my local police and firefighters, to be the best, and I don't care what color they are, whether their underwear has a fly, or who they kiss when they go home in the evening.
DISQUS doesn't allow me to vote that comment up more than once, but I can certainly give it a wider audience.


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

That Should Make Four....

In keeping with tradition, MKS Supply / Hi-Point is donating a 9mm Carbine to the Gun Blogger Rendezvous.  This will be the ninth year of their support, in from the very beginning!
 photo 995TS.jpg
While perhaps not the most aesthetically pleasing, these things have a reputation for WORKING. Bill Llewellen, who is attending again this year, has a .40 S&W version that (being a mechanical engineer and inveterate tinkerer) he has extensively modified.  Capitalist Pig, also attending again this year, has the 9mm version that he has torture-tested.  A thousand-plus rounds without cleaning!

So what does the title of this post mean?  Well, in addition to the Hi-Point carbine, we're giving away a Ruger Mk III Hunter, a SIG 1911-22, and Engineering Johnson is donating a Winchester Model 74.  If I don't go home with a new (to me) gun THIS year, I'll give up!  And, of course there's all the OTHER great stuff you can win!  So, go get registered and make your hotel reservations!  It's only two weeks away!

"In an age of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act."

That's from George Orwell.

This is from Bill Whittle:

Open racism is simply not tolerated in white America today, but black racism is the toxic glue that holds the progressive coalition together. Tolerance of – in fact, as we see from the events in Ferguson, open encouragement of black rage at a narrative that not only does not exist but reverses the daily outrages that do exist, is what defines modern progressivism. It is the politics of envy, anger, entitlement, lawlessness, violence and bald-faced lies.

And of all the promises broken by this man, surely none is more heartbreaking than the one promise that got him elected in the first place: the promise of a post-racial future. He and his racist progressive cohorts can never surrender the weapon that has gotten them everything, not the least of which is personal political power and trillions of dollars of redistributed wealth. And this latest outrage in Ferguson is yet another example – as if another was needed among the economic wreckage, creeping totalitarianism, and foreign-policy disasters -- that he and his leftist cohorts would rather rule over ruins than disappear into the dustbin of a healthy and healed nation.

For Hitting Little Things a Long Way Off

This year Redfield is donating a Battlezone 6-18x44mm scope to the Gun Blogger Rendezvous!

From the press release:
Redfield® is expanding on its popular Battlezone™ riflescope line with a new 6-18x44mm model. Designed for the AR, modern sporting or precision bolt-action rifle, the Battlezone delivers all the tactical utility demanding marksmen require at an economical price.

The Battlezone 6-18x44mm features fully multicoated lenses, Bullet Drop Compensation System (BDC) and TAC-MOA™ reticle. Pop-up, resettable 1/4-MOA finger adjustments offer tactile/audible clicks.

The Bullet Drop Compensation System comes with two adjustment dials calibrated in two of the most popular calibers for tactical rifles. The .223/5.56mm NATO dial is set up for 55gr bullets at 3,100 fps. The second dial is calibrated for 168gr .308/7.62mm NATO bullets at 2,650 fps. Each dial is marked in 50-yard increments.

The TAC-MOA reticle features stadia lines on the horizontal and vertical crosshairs set at one minute of angle (MOA) increments. This allows the marksman to quickly holdover for wind or elevation, and can be used for range estimation on objects of known size.

A fast-focus eyepiece helps shooters get on target and easily adapt to changing conditions. Like all Redfield riflescopes, the Battlezone is built to withstand the elements. 100% waterproof, nitrogen-filled maintubes prevent fogging and freezing, and are guaranteed to stay sealed for the life of the scope. The Battlezone is covered by Redfield’s "No Excuses™" lifetime warranty.
This is a 1" tube scope.  Here's what it looks like:
 photo RED118929.jpg
But you must be present to win! Get your reservations made and your registration sent in NOW!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Quote of the Day - Ol' Remus Edition

Think of DC as a walking malevolency. First the left foot advances, then the right, but the direction remains the same. Consider what would happen if one or the other foot failed to advance as expected, namely, a faceplant. - The Woodpile Report

Monday, August 18, 2014

More Rendezvous Stuff!

Brownell's has been a supporter of the Gun Blogger Rendezvous since the first year, and each year they donate one of their top-of-the-line range bags:
 photo l_084000118_1.jpg
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From Brownell's catalog:
The Signature Series Range Bag is a versatile, two-in-one bag system featuring a roomy, outer bag with large exterior, bellow pockets and an inner, open bag with adjustable dividers, padded pistol inserts, magazine pouches and much, much more. Both bags are constructed of long lasting, 1000 denier, Cordura® nylon with non-scratching, self-healing, YKK zippers and solid brass pulls. We even added stylish, top-grain, leather straps to the zipper pulls where needed to make opening and closing the “high-use” compartments easier when wearing shooting gloves. Adjustable shoulder strap is made of strong, 1½" wide nylon webbing and includes a comfortable pad lined with non-slip, suede leather. Quickly detachable, brass-plated swivel clips are springloaded for extra security and allow shoulder strap to be interchanged between inner and outer bags. Inner bag provides safe transport for match pistols when you don’t want to leave them in your competition holster. Use the inner bag to carry just what you need to the firing line and for fast “bag-up” after shooting. If you have a lot of gear, use the bags separately for nearly twice the storage capacity. The double-layered, 3/8" thick, corrugated bottom panels in both bags give full support for heavy loads of ammunition, pistols, tools, sandbags and other shooting accessories while retaining the original shape of the bag. The Signature Series is a full-featured bag, designed to perform and built to last.

Outer Bag:
• Moisture-resistant, 1000 denier, Cordura nylon.
• Large, main compartment with zippered top, measures 18" long, 9" wide, 12" high.
• Zippered, main, side pocket: 17" long, 2½" wide, 10" high. Holds shooting glasses, muffs, and cleaning supplies.
• Two, padded end pockets 7" long, 2½" wide, 10" high provide ample room for choke tubes, spare parts, etc.
• Two, flat, zippered pockets 18" long, 7" and 8" high for targets, notebooks, ballistic sheets, etc.
• Four, brass-plated D-rings provide lockable storage when used with your own padlocks.
• Adjustable shoulder strap with polished, quick-release, swivel clips.
• 2" wide, wrap-around carry handles with contoured grip area and hook and loop carry handle.
• Self-healing zippers and solid brass, #9 zipper pulls.
• Full 3/8" thick, bottom panel is composed of two, corrugated, double-wall, plastic sheets glued, then layered in opposite directions for superior strength and rigidity.

Inner Bag:
• 1000 denier, Cordura nylon with knit back, expanded vinyl lining for excellent water-resistance.
• Two, fully padded pistol inserts with soft, wool-like Sherpa® lining and hook and loop closure straps fit inside the full-length, zippered side pockets for extra security. Accepts scoped, competition guns, spotting scopes, etc.
• Two, removable, high-strength, plastic dividers with reinforced hook and loop edging for spacing adjustments; provides up to three individual compartments.
• Brass-plated D-rings for shoulder strap attachment.
• 3/8" thick, double-layered, bottom panel supports the heaviest gear.
• Padded end panels for extra protection of inner bag contents.
• Six, individually sewn, magazine pouches.
• Self-healing zippers and solid brass, #9 zipper pulls.
• Two, elastic, retaining straps for shooting towels, extra ammo and magazines.
The price on this thing in the catalog is $249.99. Mine is eight years old now, has made innumerable trips to the range loaded to the gills, and still looks new.

Brownells has also donated five tactical flashlights:
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Again, from the catalog:
The compact, amazingly powerful BVL530 is the light to have when you need emergency or supplemental lighting. At less than 5-1/2" long, it’s small enough to go with you everywhere, so you’ll have it whenever you need it. Don’t be deceived by the size - the BVL530 delivers power that belies its small stature. An ultra-reliable, shockproof, CREE® XM-L2 LED emitter gives an astonishing 530 lumens maximum output that will illuminate the darkest corners. The Low (175 lumen) mode is brighter than "high" mode on a lot of other lights, and there’s a power-saving Ultra-Low (13 lumen) mode, too. High mode can be set to steady-on or strobe. Change modes by hitting a simple sequence of "clicks" on the sealed rubber tailcap switch.

All this power sticks around, too: you get up to 2.5 hours continuous output in High mode, and an amazing 9 hours in Low.
And if you come to the Rendezvous, you could be taking one of these home with you!

Quote of the Day - Robin Williams Edition

I got this in an email this evening.  It's other people's words, but it was delivered by Robin Williams in his 1996 film Jack, about a boy who ages at four times the rate of other people - appearing about 40 years of age when he was 10.  It's his college graduation speech as valedictorian of his class.  The video clip is available at YouTube, but just read the words by screenwriters James DeMonaco and Gary Nadeau that serve as perhaps the best eulogy I think I've ever read:
I don't have very much time these days, so I'll make it quick - like my life.

You know as we come to the end of this phase of our life, we find ourselves trying to remember the good times and trying to forget the bad times. We find ourselves thinking about the future. We start to worry, thinking "What am I gonna to do? Where am I gonna to be in ten years?"

But I say to you, hey, look at me. Please, don't worry so much. Because in the end, none of us have very long on this earth. Life is fleeting. And if you're ever distressed, cast your eyes to the summer sky when the stars are strung across the velvety night. And when a shooting star streaks through the blackness turning night into day, make a wish and think of me.

And make your life spectacular.

I know I did.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

The Struggle for Stupidity

Bill Whittle's latest Firewall, on education this time:



Thursday, August 14, 2014

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Dancing in the Blood of the Slain

Why are anti-gunners so...vile?  In a reply at Quora.com to the question "How many Americans own a gun?" one Jay Bazzinotti answered:
I've read stats that there are over 300,000,000 firearms in private possession in the US. Essentially, you can find a gun in every other household, and chances are that if you break in any empty house at random, there's a 50/50 chance you will find a gun, probably in less than five minutes, either under the mattress, in the dresser or in the couch cushions, fully loaded and ready for you to use it to rob a 7/11. Over 500,000 guns are stolen each year -- maybe more, since gun owners are loathe to report gun theft. 30,000 people are killed, about 1/2 by suicide, and over 100,000 are wounded by guns every year. I particularly like the gun death in Massachusetts where a Sheriff gave a full-auto Uzi to a 9 year old who pulled the trigger and shot himself in the head -- a dozen times. The best part is that the Sheriff got off. So did the dad who brought the kid to the gun club and encouraged him to fire an unfamiliar machine gun. It's absolutely hilarious to see the NRA nutbags say there is no gun problem in America, especially when they are paying for the defense of "responsible" officials and parents like these two love bugs.
(Bold my emphasis.)

I love the caring he shows for the dead child. The Other Side™ is always so concerned about the children, unless, of course, it's a child of The Other. Then they can chortle to their heart's content when one dies. He was talking about this incident in gun-control paradise Massachusetts.  It wouldn't surprise me if he wanted a copy of the video of the incident so he could ... nope - not going there.

When people tell you "nobody wants to take your guns away!" point them at Jay Bazzinotti.

And ANOTHER Reason!

Osage County Guns, a new sponsor to the Gun Blogger Rendezvous is contributing ANOTHER pistol for our fundraising raffle for Honored American Veterans Afield (HAVA), a SIG Sauer 1911-22 that will look a lot like this one:


Osage County Guns photo 1911-22LR-Detail-Hero.jpg


And you can win it with a simple raffle ticket.  But you must be present to win!  So make your reservations today to come join us in Reno, September 4-7!  And thanks to ExurbanKevin, Osage County Guns' new head of social media marketing.

More SWAG!

For the upcoming Gun Blogger Rendezvous IX, Dillon Precision is donating a couple of their Border Shift ammo bags.  I already own a couple of them.  Very handy for the handloader, since you have loaded ammo on one side, and you can drop your empty cases into the other.  A soft but full divider keeps the two separate.

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Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Hey, Y'all, Who's Coming to the Rendezvous?

Hotel reservations are currently light. I'm trying to get a list of who's coming, and to remind you to MAKE YOUR RESERVATIONS! And spread this around!!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Well CRAP

And now Robin Williams has passed:
On August 11, 2014, at approximately 11:55 a.m, Marin County Communications received a 9-1-1 telephone call reporting a male adult had been located unconscious and not breathing inside his residence in unincorporated Tiburon, CA. The Sheriff’s Office, as well as the Tiburon Fire Department and Southern Marin Fire Protection District were dispatched to the incident with emergency personnel arriving on scene at 12:00 pm. The male subject, pronounced deceased at 12:02 pm has been identified as Robin McLaurin Williams, a 63-year-old resident of unincorporated Tiburon, CA.

An investigation into the cause, manner, and circumstances of the death is currently underway by the Investigations and Coroner Division s of the Sheriff’s Office. Preliminary information developed during the investigation indicates Mr. Williams was last seen alive at his residence, where he resides with his wife, at approximately 10:00 pm on August 10, 2014. Mr. Williams was located this morning shortly before the 9-1-1 call was placed to Marin County Communications. At this time, the Sheriff’s Office Coroner Division suspects the death to be a suicide due to asphyxia, but a comprehensive investigation must be completed before a final determination is made.
Regardless of what you might think of his politics, Robin Williams is, in my opinion, the funniest man of the last 50 years. I predicted, after seeing The World According to Garp that he would eventually win an Oscar for his acting talent, and he did for his portrayal of psychologist Sean McGuire in Good Will Hunting.

I've never seen a faster comedian, or one better at improv. In 1990 while at Kingsboro Psychiatric Center in Brooklyn, New York on location for the film Awakenings (where Williams played a psychiatrist) director Penny Marshall appeared (along with the cast) in a video feed at the American Comedy Awards. She was congratulating her brother Garry Marshall for his winning an American Achievement Award from that organization. During her speech (with Robin just over her shoulder) she mentioned that they were on set "at a menstrual hospital." In an INSTANT, Williams piped up: "A menstrual hospital! It's a period piece!" Penny Marshall turned several interesting shades of red.

Here, I think, is one of the best examples of William's brilliance - improv using a prop from the audience (Updated with a YouTube clip of the entire piece. Improv starts at about 2:22 and runs to the end of the clip.):


The world is now a grayer place.  I hope he and Jonathan Winters are making a lot of people very, very happy right now.

Edited to add:

I think this might have been a little more real that we realized:


I wish someone could have found him his Grail.