Quote of the day–Lethal Laws

The successful imposition of “gun control has not stabilized Guatemala politically.  In effect, “gun control” ensures that only the wealthy may lawfully own firearms.  However, they tend to settle political problems with firearms.  What the “gun control” laws achieved –  some 90 years after the first such was enacted – was to clear the way for mass murder.

Lethal Laws — “Gun Control” is the Key To Genocide
Page 229
by Jay Simkin, Aaron Zelman, and Alan M. Rice
Copyright 1994
ISBN 0-96442304-0-2

Quote of the day–Carl J. Truscott

The 2005 edition of the Federal Firearms Regulations Reference Guide provides information designed to help you comply with all the laws and regulations governing the manufacture, importation, and the distributions of firearms and ammunition.

Carl J. Truscott
Special Message From the Director
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives
Washington, DC 20226
ATF Publication 5300.4
[With nearly 250 pages of Federal law and regulation it appears either I or someone else misunderstand the meaning of "shall not be infringed."  I can think of better ways to help me comply than publishing this tome.--Joe]

Boomershoot.org banned

I got an email from someone that works at the Hanford site for an organization other than Pacific Northwest National Laboratory which has close ties to Hanford as well.  He said Boomershoot.org is blocked from his work.  Interesting….  I must have quite a reputation.  Or else I just flatter myself.  I’m not sure which. 

I know it is blocked from Xenia’s school.  I don’t know the reason there. 

A friend who works at Cingular told me, “The website was blocked because of relating to Violence…”  I’m insulted by that. 

Although I forget who it was someone told me it was blocked from their work access because of related to criminal activities or some such thing.  Now that I am really insulted about.

I like to think these things are, as I suggest in the FAQ, because some Puritan is afraid that someone, someplace, is having fun.

FirstName responds

Background:

I received an email from FirstName today.  She sent me the response she would like me to post.  She asked that I give her my opinion of it before I posted it.  I emailed my opinion to her and I include it here:

I detect a little bit of “sucking up” to me in your response–but not so much that I’m going to “take points off” for it.

I believe her response will be a worthwhile footnote to her writing career.  And for the record, her response to my comment was: “…there was no sucking up whatsoever…I meant every word I said.”

The following is from FirstName:

Imagine you’re on top of the world…an honor student, an opinion columnist, a sorority sister, with amazing friends and a loving family…ready to take on the rest of the world ahead of you with strength and unlimited potential. And then on one ugly day in March, your world comes crashing down…and you learn that you’re unemployed at the only place that ever gave you hope, depth and honor.

I am an avid writer with a crazy passion for words, and I was given the opportunity to share these words, my words, with thousands of listeners. My opinion wasn’t typically respected in College Station, but this only made me stronger and more excited to write.

Needless to say, my time as an opinion columnist was short-lived because I blatantly cut corners. I made one of the biggest, ugliest mistakes in my life, and I undeniably regret it every single day. My facts were not well-researched and my context certainly overshadowed my opinion. I know years from now no one will even remember this happened, but I know it will haunt me forever. I am ashamed, I am remorseful, and I have paid a weighty price.

After much hesitation about emailing Joe about the whole situation, it turned out to be probably one of the most enlightening experiences I’ve had with someone who has contrasting opinions. Joe told me a story about the board of directors at his company who were searching for a new CEO…they wanted someone who had made a major mistake in their life for this poignant reason:

“People that went through life without making any mistakes or without realizing they had made a mistake were more likely to make a major mistake in the future.  They tend to think of themselves as “charmed” and/or infallible.  They trust their instincts too much.  They will charge ahead despite evidence that the path is doomed to failure.  They cut corners because they got away with it in the past.  If you really have realized you made a mistake more serious than getting caught then you may be a better person for having made that mistake.”

These words of Joe’s (and my other academic credentials) may be the only faith I have to hold on to in hopes of succeeding after graduation. This May, I am moving out of Texas, and hopefully moving on with my life…I am taking this chance to start over in a (hopefully) forgiving world.

I know I screwed up, but I am an honest woman with a good heart…and I have learned an incredible lesson. I appreciate Joe’s constructive criticism and insight, and I thank him for giving me this opportunity.

Update: September 18, 2006. I removed the actual name of the plagiarist and substituted FirstName LastName after she asked me to remove her name, wrote an apology, and I waited what I considered was a reasonable period of time.

Boomershoot blogging part VII

I normally would have waited another week or so to mention more Boomershoot blog posts but this is a special occasion.  I forgot one posting last time and today I noticed the first ever negative posting.

The second one is the negative one.  And Boomershoot is just a extra brain fart from a barking moonbat that can’t stay on topic.  Here is the most of the relevent text:

IT’S APPARENTLY CALLED BOOMERSHOOT AND AS FAR AS I CAN SEE IT IS ONLY FOR THE TOTALLY BRAIN DEAD. NOT THAT ANYONE WHO STOPS BY HERE FITS THAT CATEGORY OF COURSE. NOLA IS STILL A RUIN AND WE HAVE TWATS SPENDING LARGE CHUNKS OF CASH ON SHIT LIKE THIS. THE WORLD IS A SAD PLACE INDEED.

[shrug]  I left a comment thanking him for the free advertising.  It probably won’t be approved but it was worth a try.

The meaning of WiFi

Thanks to this pointer from Raymond I can now stop stressing on why it’s called WiFi.  The “Wireless Fidelity” answer just didn’t sit well with me but I never bother to go searching for a better answer or rub someone’s nose in the obvious nonsense name.  Cory Doctorow gives us the real story.  WiFi isn’t short for anything.  I feel so much better now.  Thank you.

Cellphone service for Boomershoot 2006

I checked with Cingular, Inland Cellular, Qwest, T-Mobile, and Verizon. Only Inland Cellular and Verizon have coverage at the Boomershoot site. Inland Cellular is analog only. Last year I had coverage with my AT&T phone. I switched over to Cingular and now have nothing. I will get a cell phone just for the event and give the number out to all attendees.

Another brick in the wall

Gun bans, knife bans, surveillance cameras everywhere, and now the National ID Card has passed both the House of Lords and Commons.  There were some compromises made that may allow saner minds to prevail before implementation but it’s still bad news.  No good can come of a National ID card.  The U.K. is making significant progress toward a police state.

After guns are banned knives will be next

Could you imagine the laughter that would result if people claimed the slippery slope of gun control would result in banned knives?  A political world where “assault weapon” bans include not just pistol grips, folding stocks, and bayonet lugs but kitchen knives is just ridiculous, right?  Wrong.  Check out what is happening in the U.K.:

A team from West Middlesex University Hospital said violent crime is on the increase – and kitchen knives are used in as many as half of all stabbings.

They argued many assaults are committed impulsively, prompted by alcohol and drugs, and a kitchen knife often makes an all too available weapon.

The research is published in the British Medical Journal.

The researchers said there was no reason for long pointed knives to be publicly available at all.

The study found links between easy access to domestic knives and violent assault are long established.

French laws in the 17th century decreed that the tips of table and street knives be ground smooth.

A century later, forks and blunt-ended table knives were introduced in the UK in an effort to reduce injuries during arguments in public eating houses.

The researchers say legislation to ban the sale of long pointed knives would be a key step in the fight against violent crime.

“The Home Office is looking for ways to reduce knife crime.”

“We suggest that banning the sale of long pointed knives is a sensible and practical measure that would have this effect.”

Home Office spokesperson said there were already extensive restrictions in place to control the sale and possession of knives.

“The law already prohibits the possession of offensive weapons in a public place, and the possession of knives in public without good reason or lawful authority, with the exception of a folding pocket knife with a blade not exceeding three inches.”

“Offensive weapons are defined as any weapon designed or adapted to cause injury, or intended by the person possessing them to do so.”

“An individual has to demonstrate that he had good reason to possess a knife, for example for fishing, other sporting purposes or as part of his profession (e.g. a chef) in a public place.”

“The manufacture, sale and importation of 17 bladed, pointed and other offensive weapons have been banned, in addition to flick knives and gravity knives.”

I’m having difficulty modeling what is going on in these peoples minds.  Making a knife is not like building a Pentium 4 integrated circuit.  You can’t shut down a few factories and expect knifes to disappear from the hands of people.  How long have people been making knives?  Something on the order a million (or two) years, right?  Do these people believe the technology for knife making can be restricted?  Do they believe if they ban knives people will stop making them?

The best model I can come up with that there is some sort of mass insanity that has taken hold of these people.  We’ve long known that anti-gun people have mental problems.  When these people have achieved their goals of banning guns the mental problems don’t go away–they merely find a new obsession and knives are the most visible target.

Tannerite and the law

I just noticed an interesting search hit on my blog.  Someone in the Texas Attorney General is researching Tannerite.  It doesn’t look like it was a casual search either.  They looked as deep as the first 60 Google hits.

I’m not a lawyer but from my reading of the law in some states the use of Tannerite is illegal without special licensing.  The Tannerite web site appears to claim this is not true.  If you use Tannerite please get a legal opinion you can trust before using it in your political jurisdiction.

Domain Name state.tx.us ? (United States)
IP Address 204.64.42.# (Texas Attorney General)
ISP STATE OF TEXAS GENERAL SERVICES COMMISSION
Location

Continent  : North America
Country  : United States  (Facts)
State  : Texas
City  : Austin
Lat/Long  : 30.2779, -97.7379 (Map)

Language English (United States)en-us
Operating System Microsoft WinXP
Browser Internet Explorer 6.0 Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1; .NET CLR 1.1.4322)
Javascript version 1.3
Monitor

Resolution  :  800 x 600
Color Depth  :  32 bits

Time of Visit Mar 29 2006 6:42:35 am
Last Page View Mar 29 2006 6:44:43 am
Visit Length 2 minutes 8 seconds
Page Views 1
Referring URL  http://www.google.co…en&lr=&start=50&sa=N
Search Engine
 google.com
Search Words  tannerite
Visit Entry Page http://blog.joehuffm…08-89f4fcb3a234.aspx
Visit Exit Page http://blog.joehuffm…08-89f4fcb3a234.aspx
Out Click 
Time Zone UTC-6:00
Visitor’s Time
 Mar 29 2006 8:42:35 am
Visit Number 70,181

Jason got his Purple Heart

Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld participated in the ceremony.  I can’t imagine what Jason’s mother, Katy, is going through.  She has been a lifelong “Peace Activist” and even now goes on peace marches.  At the same time she is doing an excellent job of supporting her son as he recuperates and is honored by all these people who are who her political enemies.

Responding to calls for gun control

A naive writer is advocating gun control in the student newspaper at the University of Pennsylvania.  My responses:

In the comments:

Just one question, “Can you demonstrate just one time, one place, throughout all of human history, where restricting the access of handheld weapons to the average person made them safer?” If no, which I’m certain is the result, then I have to question your motivation for advocating restrictions on personal defensive tools.

Joe Huffman
E-mail: dailypenn@joehuffman.org

Occupation: Software Engineer

Location: Redmond Washington

Via email:

 

To the Editor: Just one question on gun control

Regarding “Rachel Truchil: Gun control will stem homicide uptick”

Restrictions on firearms is an appealing approach to violent crime but you have to ask yourself just one question, “Can you demonstrate just one time, one place, throughout all of human history, where restricting the access of handheld weapons to the average person made them safer?” The answer is no. With all of the gun control laws throughout history it cannot be conclusively demonstrated even one has made the average person in that political jurisdiction safer.

With that result you must realize that restrictions on weapons means you are preventing innocent, law abiding, people from obtaining the means to defend themselves from violent predators. I’m certain this is not the intended results. Please reconsider your calls for gun control. You are only creating a safer environment for the people that will obtain illegal guns as quickly and easily as people currently find access to illegal recreational drugs.

See http://blog.joehuffman.org/2004/12/14/just-one-question/ for more details.

Joe Huffman
Voice: 208-301-4254
University of Idaho ’77
University of Washington ’85
Senior Software Engineer

Every time, everyplace someone advocates gun control we must show their audience the folly of their ways.  We must legally exterminate this threat to human safety.

Update: I just sent an email to P-I columnist Robert L. Jamieson Jr. about his editorial here asking Just One Question.

Update2: I just sent an email to Seattle Times columnist Nicole Brodeur about her opinion here asking Just One Question.

 

Delivering a message

As pointed out to me by Ry in this post about plagiarism, a hot topic around these parts lately, apparently the AP has a policy of not citing bloggers as a source:

the AP apparatchiks admitting to taking our work and using it without attribution, stating “we do not credit blogs”.

Emphasis in the original.

I can’t imagine why it is but for some reason I now have this image in my mind of an approach a friend of mine was inclined to implement in a different situation. 

We had a former mutual friend (let’s just call him “Walter”) that we were in business together with.  He sold out the company and walked away with several million dollars while my friend, my brother, and many other co-workers, and I got nothing–even our contracts for royalties on the products we owned and were being sold by the new company (lets call it “Symantec”) were worth nothing.  Symantec and it’s slime ball president (lets just call him “Gordon Eubanks”) wouldn’t allow us to audit the books even though our contracts said we could.  It was this event along with election of Bill Clinton (spit, spit), and the events of Ruby Ridge that inspired me to take up guns, and later explosives, as hobbies.  Anyway I ran across a shirt at a gun show that I just had to buy.  Not for me but for my friend that was still on speaking terms with “Walter”.  I showed the shirt to him and asked him if he would like to have it.  “YES!” was the immediate reply.  I told him I would give the shirt to him on one condition.  The next time he saw Walter he had to be wearing the shirt and he had to tell “Walter” that I had given him the shirt.  “Deal.”  It wasn’t long before he came up with an alternate delivery method for the “message”.  My friend said the proper delivery would be to attach the shirt to the front door of “Walter’s” new multi-million dollar house on the lake with knife driven through the shirt like a large tack.  To the best of my knowledge the message wasn’t delivered in that fashion although I derived a great deal of pleasure over just the thought of it.

For some reason that same message and the same delivery method are what comes to mind when I read what the AP apparatchiks policy is in regards to crediting blogs.

And what was the message on the shirt you ask?

The only reason some people are alive is because it’s against the law to kill them.

The Microsoft solution

Ry tells us of the solution that you just know is the Microsoft way.  The City of Redmond, in their infinite wisdom and oneness with Mother Earth, has declared that when new office buildings are built that only 70 parking spaces may be created for every 100 offices.  This is to encourage car pooling, public transit, and bicycles instead of the evil, single passenger, internal combustion engine.  The Microsoft solution?  Valet parking for their employees.  The parking garage physically has enough space for the cars if the lanes between the parking spaces are utilized as well as the parking spaces.  The valet service parks the cars wherever there is empty space and shuffles the cars as necessary to allow people in and out of the parking spots.  Of course it is a waste of resources to pay all these people to just shuffle cars when the people driving the cars would have been happy to do it themselves.  But the City of Redmond made that a necessity and simultaneously made themselves looks like fools–which they are.  Yeah for Microsoft–demonstrating the law of Unintended Consequences to the pinheads in the City of Redmond government.

Now if Ry’s wish is granted and Microsoft builds a facility in Orofino Idaho I’d be really thrilled.

My decision

Background:

Thank you to everyone that commented, sent email and talked to me about the case.  It was very helpful.  Yesterday afternoon I sent FirstName LastName my decision.  I told her that I would post or provide a link on the post to a statement by her.  She could say whatever she wanted. She could say I am mean, hateful, SOB, or she could say she screwed up big time by taking a short cut because she was under a time deadline but learned her lesson.  Regardless of what she wrote, on the second year anniversary of my post I would remove her name from all the postings.  If I was particularly impressed with her statement I might remove her name earlier.

She responded saying she felt writing an explanation would “be even more incriminating”.  Below is part of my response:

“more incriminating”? You are way past the point of plausible deniability. You committed the “crime.” It’s impossible to deny it to any rational person even if you were to try. In my opinion you would be better off to write an essay explaining what you have learned and why you won’t be committing “crimes” again. If your prospective employer reads only the evidence against you they may be believe they would be taking a great risk by hiring you. If you can explain that you would be less likely than someone else to make a similar “mistake” in the future perhaps you would be considered a more of an asset than a liability as their employee. You may be less inclined to look the other way when someone does something wrong–because you, more than others, understand the shame of being part of some immoral act.

FYI no one I have talked to, especially my wife, believes it was a “mistake.” Many of the sentences you used were almost word for word that of the Brady Campaign. You cannot have believed that wasn’t plagiarism. Had you quoted some numbers from a discredited research paper without checking them that would have been a mistake. You did worse than both. You used the words of a admittedly biased (as is the NRA) organization and represented them as your own.

I don’t know if this will really “sink in” or not and the name Robert Heinlein probably doesn’t mean anything to you anyway. Mr. Heinlein was a science fiction author that influenced me a great deal as I was growing up. In one of his books a character said the following and I wrote it down in my personal collection of memorable quotes. When my first child was born I wrote a computer program to select one quote at random and display for me when I booted up my computer. I wanted to be reminded of various things and try to instill that knowledge in my children. Here are a couple Heinlein quotes that I think are applicable in your case:

If it can’t be expressed in figures, it is not science; it is opinion.

And the one that inspired me to collect the quotes to begin with:

Do not handicap your children by making their lives easy.

I think you will be better off by composing an apology, an explanation, and why it won’t happen again–unless you don’t think you can do that with sincerity. If not, then you will never get a chance to explain. Your resume will be thrown out before you are ever given a chance to tell them what you have learned from your foolish actions.

I have not heard from her since I sent her that email at 5:01 PM last night.

Update (03/29/2006): There has been several emails from FirstName that I haven’t reported on.  Two of them since this posting was made.  She now says:

Of course I want to write something…otherwise, everyone will only know yalls side of the story. I appreciate the chance to do this, to explain myself, to attempt to move on…
But I do feel like Ive said a lot to you about the whole situation in my emails, and you seem to only post the stuff that makes me sound like I don’t care.
I will write something short & sweet, and I hope I can slowly but surely put this all behind me.
Your time spent on all your emails, your advice, your encouragement, everything… has all been taken to heart. I sincerely appreciate it. Expect my response no later than Friday.
Thank you Joe,
FirstName
Update (03/31/2006): FirstName responds.
Update2: September 18, 2006. I removed the actual name of the plagiarist and substituted FirstName LastName after she asked me to remove her name, wrote an apology, and I waited what I considered was a reasonable period of time.

Quote of the day–Eric Finch

The same thing that always happens when people without guns go up against people with guns.

Eric Finch
A character in the movie V for Vendetta.
[James and I simultaneously turned and looked at each other, for the only time during the movie, when this line was spoken.  After the movie James said, "I'm surprised they had the balls to make that movie."--Joe]