Boomershoot position 75 is open and other stuff.

Position 75 just opened up. This is a position that requires a shooting bench. You can see the pictures and sign up to take the position here.

The shooter in position 76 lost his spotter and:

I need a single entrant from Seattle area that can share gas and lodging expenses. I will be leaving Friday morning and returning Sunday night.

If you would like to be that person send me an email with your contact information and I will forward the information on.

Quote of the day–The Patriot-News

If anyone doubts that there’s an epidemic of gun violence in this country, let these statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explain just one category of it: In 2004, 5,292 young people ages 10 to 24 were murdered — that’s 15 per day — 81 percent with a firearm. Homicide is the second leading cause of death in this age group.

And here is a sad commentary on how far removed the nation is from confronting this scourge that leads to the deaths of thousands of children a year and wounds thousands of others, not to mention many more adults: The discussion inevitably gets bogged down in conflict over gun rights and gun control.

The Patriot-News
March 30, 2008
Rather than get bogged in rights vs. gun control, focus on why so many are bent on destruction
[I just thought people should know that someone 24 years old is considered a child. Apparently someone changed the definition and never bothered to tell the rest of us. And that includes Merriam-Webster.–Joe]

Class III firearms in Kansas

Via a tip from the Apex of the Triangle of Death I discovered Kansas is considering allowing private citizens to possess suppressors, machine guns, and short barreled shotguns again. Here are some articles on it:

Here is the existing law. Here is the House bill that quietly repeals it. Here is the Senate Bill with which it must be reconciled.

The Kansas House approved this bill by a vote of 105-18!

And speaking of pack animals and conforming with the herd, this is from another news story on the Kansas class III issue:

The House gave final approval to a bill allowing dealers, manufacturers and private citizens to own machine guns, which would bring Kansas in line with all but a handful of states.

“I don’t pass judgment on why people want to own anything — Mercedeses, mink coats, diamond rings, fully automatic weapons,” said Rep. Candy Ruff, D-Leavenworth, a sponsor of the measure.

The emphasis is mine.

Humans are pack animals

The observation that most humans are “pack animals” and conformists leads me to conclude that in addition to having the obvious detrimental effects of forcing conformity to harmful and even dangerous beliefs there are ways this human characteristic can be exploited to the advantage of freedom loving people. In essence we need to align the pack norms with our principles rather than let the anti-freedom movement align them for us.

I haven’t read it, but I suspect Groupthink: Psychological Studies of Policy Decisions and Fiascoes would be very insightful. In the absence of my doing the proper research here are my speculations on the gun issue and how we might take advantage of this human characteristic:

  • The more gun owners “come out of the closet” the more difficult it is for the anti-gun bigots to herd the pack in the desired direction.
  • The more times you take a new shooter to the range the less people there will be who accept the implied characterization by the bigots of all gun owners as actual or imminent criminals.
  • Every time you speak up when someone else is denigrating gun ownership you make it more difficult for others to agree with the anti-gun position.
  • Every time a piece of pro-gun legislation is introduced and/or passed it makes it harder for the anti-gun forces to introduce their legislation even if it is mostly unrelated to the pro-gun law. Hence getting a state preemption law passed (YEAH Mike!) helps prevent “assault weapon” legislation from getting a toehold. Another example would be a law requiring the ownership of firearms in one city throws into question a proposal in another state or city to limit gun ownership.
  • Every court ruling that says gun ownership, no matter how narrowly defined and incremental from the existing group think, is a right protected by the constitution it makes it harder for the bigots to get critical mass for restricting some other aspect of gun ownership.

We need to create a “pack” where gun ownership and freedom is the predominant viewpoint. When the forces of anti-gun bigotry and socialism are viewed with justified contempt the forces of freedom can then advance and turn back the terrible cloud hanging over our country and the world.

When Prophecy Fails also gives us insight and ideas for breaking people out of the pack

Are there any pro-freedom psychologists and sociologists out there that can contribute more on this topic?

Easier said than done

I really like what Ronnie Barrett has to say here:

Be aware there are more companies that will respect this position. If Hawaii or any state bans the sale of the .50-caliber rifle, we will immediately stop the sale and service of all Barrett products to that state’s government agencies. We will also welcome all small arms manufacturers to take the same action.

He already stopped sales to California as did STI.

I did a similar thing with my restrictions on Modern Ballistics. But I have no way to enforce this when the downloads are free and essentially anonymous. Plus I have only received a couple hundred dollars for all the hundreds of downloads and usage of the product over the years. Any income I lose from adhering to my principles is measured in pennies.

While I greatly admire and encourage the Barrett and STI actions it is not my pocket book that suffers from this. I know other manufactures that simply cannot afford to refuse sales to California because of the volume of business they would lose.

Send the teachers to the reeducation camps

Via an email from Kirby I get this link and story:

LARP fans at Bowling Green State University may have to contend with a crippled game of Zombies vs. Humans after the University banned Nerf guns on campus.

Nerf guns are banned???

I started poking around the University website to try and figure out what sort of place this is. I found this scary:

Established in 1910 to educate teachers, BGSU is the 14th largest producer of teachers in the country

They pride themselves on producing teachers and they think 18 year olds should not be allowed to have Nerf guns? I think some teachers of teachers need to be taught something. Perhaps some time at a reeducation camp would help. I suggest they start with the U.S. Consitution and the basics of a free society.

Quote of the day–Martin Duberman

Americans have a very low tolerance for differentness, whether it’s racial, ethnic, or sexual.  Despite our rhetoric about individualism, we are a desperately conforming people.

Martin Duberman
[My QOTD from yesterday was on this same topic. As I was laying in bed last night I had a lot more thoughts on the topic and decided to make a post on the subject. When looking for a QOTD for today this one jumped out at me. I’ll try to get the post out sometime this morning.–Joe]

I blame global warming

Seattle and surrounding areas in the Puget Sound are now getting heavy snow. Visibility is only a few blocks as I look out the window of our building here in Redmond.

I’m fairly certain Al Gore would agree with me, and I know Phil does. It’s all because of man caused global warming climate change.

Update: The storm forecast for the Boomershoot site:


132 PM PDT FRI MAR 28 2008




Quote of the day–Jenny Block

The problem, it seems to me, is this. People are pack animals and they want — need — approval from the herd. So, forcing this one-size-fits-not-nearly-everyone way of life down everyone’s throat is detrimental to everyone. Living a life that doesn’t fit is miserable and that misery plays out in unhappy ways in people’s lives.

Jenny Block
March 27, 2008
Open Relationships: What the World Already Has
[The pack animal observation applies to so many things that bug me about people. It is a huge component of the attacks on freedom. From gay rights and gun control to religious intolerance you will find this urge to conform and to enforce conformity playing a big part.–Joe]

Quote of the day–Xenia Huffman-Scott

I am not amused.

Xenia Huffman-Scott
March 27, 2008
Not amused
[Check out the picture she posted. There are two inches of new snow in Moscow, Idaho this morning. The Boomershoot site, already deeper in snow than I care for this close to the event, is at a higher altitude and probably got even more snow. This could be the year where Boomershooters get to practice long range shooting in “real world conditions” of mud and/or snow. For years Ry has been urging me to make the event more challenging by making people shoot prone from a mud pit mixed with ice and gravel while we hose them down with water. This year might be Ry’s fantasy, without the gravel, come true with the help of Mother Nature. I’ll bring Ry gravel for his shooting position.–Joe]

Tom Mangan in the news again

H/T to Uncle.

Mangan is reading the Brady script to CNN this time (previous posts about Mangan):

ATF special agent Tom Mangan says the .50-caliber rifle has become one of the “guns of choice” for the drug cartels. The weapon fires palm-sized .50-caliber rounds that can cut through just about anything.

Mangan showed CNN the power of the rifle on a gun range near Phoenix, Arizona. The weapon, a Barrett, was seized in an ATF raid. A round fired from 100 yards away tore through a car door and both sides of a bulletproof vest like those used by Mexican police.

“There’s nothing that’s going to stop this round,” Mangan says.

The rifle was intercepted as it was being smuggled into Mexico. Mangan says investigators believe four others already had passed through the border.

Watch the video to see and hear the emotional appeal these bigots invoke. What they don’t seem to realize is all this is caused by the banning of recreational drugs. In other words, governments cause crime.

Boomershoot 2008 site maintenance and conditions

On Saturday Caleb and I visited the Boomershoot site to do some maintenance, explosive experiments, and to inspect the site.

The maintenance went fairly well. I discovered why one of the WiFi access points wasn’t working. It will take another trip out there to verify my fix but I’m pretty confident it will work. The new inverter I had installed last fall didn’t want to start up until after we fiddled with it for quite a while and I don’t trust it. I’m going to get another one. And finally we installed a petcock on the pipe for our “well” so we could easily drain the water out of it.

The explosive experiments went well enough. We mixed up two batches of Boomerite. One was made with the old fertilizer grade ammonium nitrate. The other batch used the new explosive grade ammonium nitrate I purchased last June. We did a quick test with the new stuff last September and suspected it was not as sensitive as the older material. Our tests on Saturday confirmed those suspicions.

Using CCI Stinger .22LR ammo from about 65 yards the old would detonate reliable but the new would only detonate about one out of three hits.

Using American Eagle .22LR ammo at 12 yards the old would detonate about one out of three hits but the new would not detonate even one out of five or six hits. At 10 yards the old would detonate every time and the new only about one out three hits.

Our conclusion is to get the same probability of detonation the new material requires about another 10 fps of velocity. This is measurable but not a big enough deal to spend the effort to try and improve the mix.

The biggest issue I have concerns about is the condition of the site. It was five weeks from the big day (April 27th) and there are still drifts well over knee deep in places.

View of most of the target area and part of the .50 Caliber Ghetto.

This is the road leading into the parking area and a neighbor’s car.

This is The Berm shooters use for prone shooting. That snow drift is probably two to three feet deep.

This is the hillside shooting area where targets in the 500 to 700 range are placed. There are some big drifts out there.

I’m really glad we paved the target construction area with concrete blocks last fall. This will keep us out of the mud.

This is the 375 yard target area. It is very, very wet and muddy.

Caleb next to one of the snow piles at my parents and brothers farm.

I spent some time talking to my brother about the ground conditions.

My brother Doug and I talked for a while about the weather. He is of the opinion it would take about three weeks of good weather to dry up to the point where they could start farming. If they can be in the fields we would have excellent conditions for Boomershoot. However, the weather forecast for the next ten days is for rain and cloudy weather. Therefore my best guess is that Boomershoot 2008 will be on the damp side. I’ll visit the site again at two weeks and one week prior to the event and have better information. Attendees should have contingency plans for muddy ground unless I give a better report just before the event.

Caleb spotted ten wild turkeys as we were headed home.

Into the bit bucket

Every once in a while I try posting a comment to Bryan Miller’s blog. About two thirds of the time the comment does not appear. The following are my last two failed attempts.

This was in response to The Supremes and the 2nd Amendment:

It’s also very instructive the Bryan does not answer any questions or engage the people that comment here. He merely makes his pronouncements and ignores the refutations of his claims. If he were to engage what I have found most useful in dealing with his type is to insist they answer Just One Question: “Can you demonstrate one time or place, throughout all history, where the average person was made safer by restricting access to handheld weapons?” I’ve been pushing this question for years without anyone being able to give a coherent answer they have been able to defend.

This was in response to Pennsylvania’s murderous burden on New Jersey:

Or maybe the criminologist and sociologists who study criminals. Claims that restrictions on firearms make people safer are without a factual basis. If they did you would expect to see some benefit from Washington D.C.’s ban. But you don’t. Even broader studies of less severe restrictions have been unable to find benefits.

So with so many “experiments” done with firearms restrictions with, at best, nothing to show for it in terms of public safety, what is your real reason for advocating such restrictions?

JadeGold, I’m not rotund, don’t own a LaZBoy or similar type chair, haven’t had a CheetoTM in months, and have never seen Red Dawn. Perhaps you were engaging in some projection.

The JadeGold comment I was responding to appears to have been deleted.

Update: The first comment above did ultimately appear. I had refreshed the page several times without seeing but I went back after seeing the comment from Rob (below) and it now shows up. Also, I updated my comment to make it coherent. [blush]