Quote of the day–Voltaire

I know many books that have bored their readers, but I know of none which has done real evil.

Voltaire
[Voltaire was wrong. This is not to take issue with Voltaire's primary message of strong civil liberties in general or even free speech in particular.

Voltaire should have known of the tens or hundreds of thousands kill because some religious book said followers should kill, maim, or enslave non-believers. But he didn't live at a time to have seen the hundreds of millions dead due, in large part, to Karl Marx's The Communist Manifesto. One can use the same arguments used in defense of the First Amendment in defense the Second Amendment. People that claim free speech doesn't harm people like guns do only have to shown the millions and millions of dead in the Soviet Union, China, and other "people's paradises". And the sad part is that private weapons ownership would have prevented most of those deaths.

--Joe]

Insults and distortion

The numbers and the law don’t support their position so they result to insults, distortion, and copyright violation:

There is an America still stuck in the fifties, isolated from our cities and from each other by virtue and circumstance and the placement of highways and byways.

Where no gangs roam and real gun play is only on TV and children are not killed by stray bullets but by accident and by suicide in flaccid homes, all for the idle dreams of idle men made more flaccid by their flaccid imaginations.

They are white, nice and stuck, flaccid fools clinging to a romantic fantasy that disguises their impotent existence if not their impotence.

Armchair Constitutional scholars between clocking out and passing out.  This is flaccid tea party America.  Heels in the mud, Palin on the tube and loaded gun in good working condition, exceeded only by that of the remote.

For flaccid America, killing is an idea, a fantasy pastime, a friend of boredom, that seems to bear the right not to be.

Here is the original picture:

Quote of the day–Dudley Brown

Writing the ATF and providing them with your information is akin to giving thieves your home address and the hours you won’t be home.

Dudley Brown
October 17, 2009
Executive Director National Association for Gun Rights
ATF Goes On The Offense
[This is probably exaggerating just a bit. But I'm pretty sure the ATF is not as responsive to public opinion as some other agencies are. Writing to the people that decide their funding is going to be more effective. They listen to the people with purse strings.--Joe]

On our way

Barb and I made it through A Security Theater and are now waiting at the gate ready to board our flight to Orlando.

I’m wearing this shirt:

It seemed to get a smile from one of the TSA agents. I wonder if it was because he agreed with it or because he knew I wasn’t carrying at the time–he and his co-workers had defeated me for the moment.

Quote of the day–Li Li

I don’t think a creative solution is needed. Only one that is straight to the root of the problem: Coming from a country which does not believe that civilians should be allowed to carry arms for self-defense, Singapore – and we have a very low crime rate, and even lower crime rate involving arms – why don’t Americans consider taking back all the guns civilians are allowed to have once and for all?

Li Li
October 26, 2009
Comment to Looking to Blog Readers for Good Ideas to Reduce Teen Shootings
[Because freedom is better than bondage and tyranny, it fails my Jews in the Attic Test, and it would be a violation of a specific enumerated right. Try answering Just One Question then get back to me.--Joe]

Ohio is considering Firearms Freedom Act

Montana and Tennessee passed it. Ohio is now considering it:

Reps. Seth Morgan, R-Huber Heights, and Jarrod Martin, R-Beavercreek, have introduced legislation that would allow for firearms made and sold within Ohio to be exempt from federal firearms regulations.

Morgan said that House Bill 315 is mainly a preemptive effort to protect the state in the event President Barack Obama’s administration tries to push any new federal regulations.

My opinion is here.

U.N. and guns

Bob Barr says the U.N. is coming to take our guns:

The real agenda of these folks at the UN, and in London, Tokyo, Brasilia, and the other capitals around the world of nations pushing the US to “come on board,” is not international regulation, but limiting the freedom we enjoy within the United States to keep and bear arms.

Back in the mid-1990s the NRA sent out postcards for members to mail to the head of the U.N. saying what they had planned was illegal under the U.S. Bill of Rights. I added a note to the one I sent. I told him the guns wouldn’t be voluntarily turned in even with monetary compensation. And if they sent people to take them by force to make sure anyone they sent brought their own body bags.

I still am of that opinion and I’ve had a lot more time to prepare and prepare others for such circumstances (see also here). And my neighbors have similar opinions.

Μολὼν λαβέ.

Quote of the day–Anonymous

Why can’t people just do what they’re told? When we do our taxes do we ask why line 35 is subtracted from line 22? Do we argue with the judge when he makes a decision or a cop tells us not to stand in a certain place? No.

We are subjects of the government that is supposed to care of us. Whether the rules are stupid or illogical, do what you’re told by authorities. The rules are for your own good.

Life will be a lot simpler if you do what you’re told.

Anonymous
October 24, 2009 7:01 PM
Response to “Bag Check” Cartoon
[I'm just not quite sure if this person was serious or sarcastic. I'm about 80% sure it was serious. And that is extremely scary to me.

And the TSA has a blog? What a hoot! I wish I had the time to go play with them more. I left a comment at the above link but due to moderation it hasn't shown up yet. I essentially just left a link to What TSA really stands for. So it may be that won't make it past moderation.--Joe]

Update: The comment made it through moderation and I’m getting hits from it. There is also a automatically generated link to this post as well that is getting a few hits.

Visit to the Bahamas

Barb and I are going to a wedding this week. We leave Wednesday and get back on Sunday. The wedding takes place on a cruise ship in the Bahamas. This wedding is part of the reason we didn’t really have budget for attending any big gun events this year like the NRA Convention or the Gun Blogger Rendezvous.

I mention this because we might have time for lunch in the Orlando area on Sunday after we get back from the cruise if anyone wanted to say hi.

How many rounds per year?

I’ve often wondered how many rounds per year of ammo we go through in the U.S. Some say about nine billion others say about five billion as of 1992. Some say the world wide production is only 14 billion. Yet CCI (Lewiston Idaho) says they alone are going to produce more than six billion this year.

Six billion bullets in one year from just one company. Do you want to compute the odds on how safe bullets are compared to cars, swimming pools, and ladders? It’s beyond astronomical, it’s governmental*.


*I think it was one of the recent Vicious Circle podcasts that made mention of this joke.

More on the Practical Application of Principles

It’s time to restate this.  I posted it last year, and I wonder if anyone really “got it”.  It cannot be overstated.  Reading Joe’s recent post about the open carry debate among the pro gun rights camp reminded me of it, once again.  That debate can be said to be between people with the same basic principles.  We’ll see how Rand’s “rules of engagement” as I call them, apply.  Last year I noted;

In the essay, Rand defines three rules “…about the working of principles in practice and about the relationship of principles to goals.” 

Wait.  What?  “the working of principles in practice”?  What’s that?  “The relationship of principles to goals”?  Sounds pretty juicy if there’s anything to it.  Well, there is.

 Leaving out her extensive lead-in:

1. In any conflict between two men (or two groups) who hold the same basic principles, it is the more consistent one who wins.

Open carry verses keeping it hidden so as not to scare or offend anyone.  Which position is more consistent with the basic principles of RKBA?

2. In any collaboration between two men (or two groups) who hold different basic principles, it is the more evil or irrational one who wins.

It applies to any situation, but the idea of government “taking care of” the American people, shared by Republicans and Democrats, comes to mind.  Democrats win here.  Every time.  Republicans will never understand this.  It’s not in their DNA to understand this rule.  It’s in their DNA to deny it.  The NRA had a similar problem about 15 years ago, but they seem to be getting over it, like getting over a very long-lasting flu.  You cannot collaborate with someone who holds different basic principles and expect a nice outcome.  It’s better to do your own thing, unless you want to be the more evil and irrational one.

3. When opposite basic principles are clearly and openly defined, it works to the advantage of the rational side;

Gun control debate.  Practicing rule 3, without fully understanding it, is the one and only source of our recent successes.  Understand it, Little Grasshopper, and you will go far.  Some of us think that we’ve been trying to appear rational as a selling point, or trying to get the opposition to think that we aren’t bad people after all, but it is by simply being rational, and by being rational in a public way, and sometimes in an in-your-face way, that we win.  There’s a fine distinction here, but a very important one.  Selling ourselves as people is what Republicans do.  That argument says, “I’m a nice, decent person, so you should agree with me.”  Blech.  Selling our ideas, on their own merits, and damn the torpedoes because we know we’re right and we can prove it, we know our opposition is wrong, disastrously wrong, and we can prove that, is what rational people do.

when they (principles) are not clearly defined, but are hidden or evaded, it works to the advantage of the irrational side.

Taking RKBA in light of that last bit; hiding your (our) position (that guns in public are a good thing) or evading it, tends to work in favor of the irrational side (gun restrictions).  We’re trying to coddle those who are wrong, trying to sell ourselves in a way tailored so as to appeal to their stupidity and bad behavior.  In so doing we lend them an appearance of credibility or legitimacy that they do not deserve.  Like it or not, that’s how it works.  We have to understand that there are some people who have no credibility, have no legitimacy and deserve no accommodation (anti gunners in this case, or people who are offended or “scared” by visible guns [I think most or all of the "fear" is a cheap act perpetrated for maximum drama]) and we have to be ready to point out why.

I believe there are enough examples in most people’s day-to-day lives that these basic axioms, Rand’s rules of engagement, will be seen as not only valid but very useful once you look at things with them in mind.  Working with institutions installing and troublshooting PA systems (I have an appointment tomorrow) I’ve run into all these situations.  They’re political events as much as anything else.

Interview with a choir boy

In some of my training via Insights the instructor referred to the initial stages of a violent confrontation as being interviewed. The interview might be conducted in silence from a distance, it might be by asking you for the time or for “money for a cup of coffee”, and it might only take a few seconds. But almost for certain the bad guy will conduct an “interview” of some type before attacking. In predator/prey terms it is the predator looking for easy prey. They want something that will be easy enough that they don’t get hurt yet profitable enough to not be a waste of time for the benefit gained. A couple of cops in full uniform leaving the donut shop are seldom prey. Frail little old ladies, with a big purse, pushing a walker, alone on a dark street look like food.

Your goal is to fail the interview process so they look for some other prey. Your first line of defense is to be aware of your surroundings. Just noticing that you are being interviewed and letting them know that you noticed is usually enough to “fail the interview” as in this encounter Barb and I had. If you make it past the first stage of the interview you may have to engage in some escalation of force to defend yourself or other innocent life. This might involve retreat, taking a defensive or aggressive posture, display or use of pepper spray, or display or use of a weapon. This escalation could take place over the course of a fraction of a second or over a minute or more.

Gun Nut Caleb had an interview with a choir boy on Saturday and apparently passed the first stage of the interview and threw his coffee at the interviewer during a later stage.

I tell my students that they should always be alert and thinking, “If ‘this’ happened what should I do?” When you are walking down the sidewalk, when you are in the grocery store, when you are driving and stopped at a light, or wherever you are. Think about what could happen and how to solve the problem. Your hands are full with bags of groceries, or a child or three. You are strapped into a car, or you are pushing a shopping cart. These are real life situations, not the range with a paper bulls-eye target at 30 feet or even the attempt at “combat shooting” when well defined “bad guys” are rigidly fixed precisely 21 feet away with the “hostage” covering only the left half of their torso. The range time is essential practice but real life is different and you need to at least go through the effort to translate the range exercise into real life in your mind.

One of my “what if” scenarios solutions is where the contents of my hands (except for children) goes into air in the general direction of the attacker. Fast movement is exceedingly distracting. It is very difficult for your eyes and thought to not be drawn to movement. Putting material into the air should distract the attacker some from your drawing of a weapon. When the checkout line is long and I’m bored the thoughts extend to fantasy and the solution involves the can of baked beans bouncing off the head of the masked gunman holding up the clerk while I draw, double tap his cranium, then catch the can of beans returning from on high in my weak hand and proceed to scan for more threats before holstering and continuing through the check-out line.

Reality is not fantasy. Read how Caleb handled it and how it turned out. It probably wasn’t how he expected such an encounter would go down but it certainly was good enough that the good guys can pat him on the back and say, “You did just fine.”

Quote of the day–Kevin Gaudet

It was a stupid idea in the first place and a ridiculous waste of money on an ongoing basis.

Kevin Gaudet
Federal director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation on the gun registry in Canada.
October 26, 2009
Gun registry battle rages
[If the Canadians can regain some of their freedom it will be a good sign for us and others all over the world. It provides more data that freedom doesn't mean the sky is going to fall and it removes one more arrow from the quiver of the anti-freedom people that say things like (Wendy Cukier, president of the Coalition for Gun Control, from the same article):

Without information about who owns guns and the guns they own, there is no effective control. Internationally, most countries licensing gun owners and registering firearms are moving to strengthen controls. This would be a huge step backwards.

Please also note that she doesn't say anything about making people safer--it's about control.--Joe]

Quote of the day–JBD

I read a great many of the responses to Douglas Weil’s spiel on CCW and his attack on John Lott. Perhaps some might find it interesting, that first of all, Douglas Weil’s degree ScD (doctorate of science) is only an honorary degree, and not earned. In my case, i earned my degree, in a field I pioneered: Analytical Investigative Science. I know Doug Weil, I know what he is and I know how he does things. If he can’t get the numbers he wants, he takes somebody elses numbers and plays with them, to make them say what he wants. If numbers aren’t available, he invents them. Doug Weil is 100% committed to Hand Gun Control, Inc. and the disarming of America. To characterize him as anything less than totally Socialist minded, would be to honor him. The numbers he used in this article were twisted and misused.

JBD, ScD. (Initials used @ employers request)
March 30, 1998
From http://www.intellectualcapital.com/issues/98/0326/iccon.asp
[The link is now dead but you can view the archive here.

As near as I can tell the anti-gun people have been lying and twisting the truth for as long as there has been a debate about gun ownership. When the WWW began taking off and the mainstream media began losing power the good guys finally started winning a few battles. It was stuff like this that made the difference. Before that the lies and spin would be heard because the MSM wanted the population to hear that. Had high speed cheap communication not made its debut for another 10 or 15 years we would most likely have completely lost the battle.--Joe]

Open carry being used as a political statement

From the WA-CCW email list:

Mayoral candidate Joe Mallahan will be walking North Beacon Hill Sunday. I plan on a walk, open carry at that same time in that area. Info follows:

On Sunday, October 25th, mayoral candidate Joe Mallahan will do a walking tour of N. Beacon Hill, beginning at 1:00 at the Lite Rail Station. Please note that the North Beacon Hill Council does not endorse candidates, however it is worthwhile for our community to express our dreams/hopes/concerns/issues, etc. to each candidate who contacts us. Mr. Mallahan will be at Kusina Filipina from 2:30-3:00 to hear from community members. Please join him there.

Anyone interested?????

Mike C—Seattle

I’m 300 miles away this weekend and I’m a little too cowardly to do that anyway. I’d be afraid of being forced into a “pavement tasting party”. But I think it would be rather cool to follow him around with pro-gun signs and shirts protesting his support of the illegal acts of the current mayor.

Quote of the day–Winston Churchill

When you have to kill a man it costs nothing to be polite.

Winston Churchill
On formal declarations of war.
[As I was looking through my collection of quotes for some reason this one reminded me of the Threepers.

I considered using something about unicorn bacon that I heard in a recent Gun Nuts podcast but I thought this one was more appropriate. Unicorn bacon reminds me of Threepers too but that is more difficult to explain.--Joe]