Dusting it up with the TSA

For the near brain-dead supporters of the TSA that still exist out there I would like them to think about how the TSA could possibly stop a dust explosion such as this one on an airplane in flight. Compare the size and shape of the grain elevator in that picture to an airplane fuselage. Compare the strength of the materials (reinforced concrete versus a thin aluminum skin with window) used in the construction.

A few pounds of powdered sugar, flour, or powdered milk can make enough dust to take out a grain elevator and it is more than enough to take an airplane out of the sky. And just how is the TSA going to scan for that when everyone that has eaten a powdered sugared doughnut since they last changed their clothes is going to test positive?

The TSA is nothing but A Security Theater and only the most ignorant and stupid don’t know and understand that.

You contribute nothing

Just so you know what they think of civil rights advocates:

Decisions about campus safety should be made by administrators, faculty, and students, not by extremists . . . who contribute nothing to the academic community in the commonwealth,” Andrew Goddard, president of the Virginia Center for Public Safety

I’ll bet there were people who claimed similar things about the presence of blacks on campuses a few decades ago.

There is a rally tomorrow (Tuesday, November 1) at the Old Dominion University’s campus:

A gun rights group that plans a rally this week on Old Dominion University’s campus will have some unwanted company when it gathers Tuesday on Kaufman Mall to push for less restrictive weapons policies.

The group will be confronted by gun control advocates who today said they’ve organized a counterdemonstration at ODU to oppose those who believe concealed permit holders should be allowed to bring firearms into campus buildings.

Both groups will descend on campus Tuesday afternoon to respectively lobby for and against a campus gun policy update proposed by ODU that would ban permit holders from bringing guns into school facilities.

It would play well for our side if, as is usual, the pro-gun side outnumbers the anti-gun side by 10 or 1000 to 1. Just who the “extremists” are should be more apparent by this time tomorrow.

Quote of the day—Henry C. Wright

The moment a man claims a right to control the will of a fellow being by physical force, he is at heart a slaveholder.

Henry C. Wright
April 7, 1837
The Liberator
[Irony alert.

I found this on The Virginia Center for Public Safety (an anti-gun group) web site. Apparently they don’t research or think through the content of their web site any more than they do their policies.

When they advocate for restrictions on firearms ownership they themselves are advocating to “control the will of a fellow being by physical force” via the government.

Furthermore Henry C. Write claimed:

That it is the right and duty of the slaves to resist their masters, and the right and duty of the people of the North to incite them to resistance, and to aid them in it.

Isn’t it better for the people to posses arms and never be slaves than to become slaves and require arms from others to free yourself?

There is a reason no one ever accuses anti-gun people of being too consistent or too smart for their own good.—Joe]

Round count

I was scanning through the May 2011 issue of the American Rifleman before I threw it away and read the following (Page 56 in the article Military Marksmanship):

According to the Army standards and training manual, PAM 350-38 (2009 version), a Regular Army light infantryman should fire about 1,200 rounds a year, assuming he participates in everything: basic marksmanship, day-night qualification, unit live-fire exercises, shooting in NBC gear, thermal and infrared (IR) sights, etc. His Guard and Reserve colleague should expend 660 rounds. But interviews show that almost nobody comes remotely close to that figure. Furthermore, for “plain vanilla” soldiers with access to shooting simulators, and who do not use thermal or IR sights, the specified annual expenditure is 490 rounds for active and 294 for Guard and Reserve.

1,200 rounds per year? If I shoot in just one USPA or Steel Challenge match per month I will go through that many rounds in a year. And that doesn’t count the rounds I expend in practice. I have gone though that many rounds in a single day in practice. And “nobody comes remotely close to that figure”? Wow! And I feel I don’t get enough range time in. And we are sending our troops off to war with this level of training?

Those anti-gun people who claim it is a fantasy to believe the gun owners could hold our own against the Federal Government are totally clueless and whistling past the graveyard. We outnumber them, we can outshoot them, and that doesn’t even take into account that most of them would be on our side anyway.

Quote of the day—Mike Vanderboegh

First and foremost you must quit looking at and treating the law-abiding armed citizenry of the United States as the enemy. For if you don’t, we certainly will be.

Convince us by your actions that you are no better than the gangs who commit crimes without uniforms and we will treat you similarly. And there ain’t nearly enough of you to shove us around in a real national emergency.

Mike Vanderboegh
February 17, 2010
“Choose this day whom you will serve.”: An Open Letter to American Law Enforcement.
[Note that this was written before the details of Fast and Furious had become public.

It may be becoming time for law enforcement to chose which side they are on. The failure of the Occupy Wall Street “movement” to achieve anything close to critical mass should be a sufficient hint that the socialists are not the clear winners if we have an economic collapse.

The left has seriously overplayed their hand; Polls show them in extreme distress, “under the radar” gun control is failing and the Tea Party has demonstrated itself far more numerous and smart than the OWS/Flea-Party. So what happens next? They have two choices. They can retreat and regroup or they can “go for broke”. I think OWS was the left to testing the waters of the go for broke option.

The question now is; Will the socialists in power swallow their pride and do the wise thing or will they let their narcissism go into full bloom? I know far too many people invested in copper, lead, and brass who would like a return on that investment for the “full boom” option to end well but I’m not sure the narcissists really understand reality and it will be American law enforcement that has to make some very tough decisions.—Joe]

Don’t enable that tool

Sebastian says this is Help We Don’t Need. Say Uncle says this is How not to win. I’ve upload the 67 second MP3 here. It has received nearly 80,000 views on YouTube.

This is not about whether the firearms instructor has the right to say what he did or refuse his services to anyone. I fully agree he was within his rights to do what he did. I just don’t think it is a good idea.

Yes, there are some Muslims in this country who are actively trying to murder as many Americans as they can. Yes, there are Obama supporters who are actively working to destroy our freedoms.

But one of the basics of our country is that an individuals actions and character not their religion or who they voted for (we have secret ballots for a reason) should determine their status. There are certain specific enumerated rights which are guaranteed to everyone but those that have proven themselves completely untrustworthy.

The right to keep and bear arms is a specific enumerated right. It is a fundamental natural right. What does this look like to people who are undecided on the issue of gun owner rights?

Think of it how it would look if a teacher refused to teach someone to read on the basis of religion/voting-record/skin-color. Or a lawyer that refused to represent someone on that basis. Or someone that refused to sell books or newspapers to someone on that basis. Or a police officer that refused to arrest the attacker of someone who was “the wrong type of person”.

I once had an Arab Muslim student for my NRA Personal Protection class. I didn’t think it was that big of a deal. He was married to an American woman and studying architecture at a nearby university. He wanted to be able to get an Idaho concealed weapons license and that required proof of training.

A few years later after I stumbled across some more information about him I initiated a long conversation with the FBI about him. The FBI agent I talked said they knew of him but, naturally, wouldn’t tell me much more. I don’t know that he was really anything to be concerned about and I don’t know that the FBI or any other government agency ever did anything beyond keep a file on him and watch him a little closer than they would most people.

I still think this was the proper course of action. Sort of an innocent until proven “guilty” policy.

Based on the information I had at the time it was entirely appropriate to teach him to defend himself with a firearm. Later information led me to question that conclusion. But I knew that I did not have as much information as needed to draw the correct conclusions. The people responsible for drawing the correct conclusion and had access to far more information than I did probably would be interested in this student seeking out firearms instruction. My usual policy is to not keep records of my students and even to destroy the list of previous Boomershoot participants after I send out an email to them announcing the next event. But this guy was memorable and I violated that policy only after spending a lot of time thinking about it and urging from wife Barbara.

When I was getting my instructor credentials I was told, and I followed this advice, to ask every student why they were taking the class. Any hints that they were intending to break the law would have been sufficient to refuse my services to them. I still think that refusing to teach someone on the basis of their religion alone, even Islam, is not a good idea. There are far, far more Muslims in our country who are friendly to our culture and form of government than are hostile.

I believe that in most cases there are going to be indicators other than religion (or voting record) that can be used to appropriately deny firearm instruction services to someone. In the case of the Muslim student I had he was married to a U.S. citizen and all appearances were that he was friendly to our country.

Also, there are (or at least was) terrorist training camps available. If the guy merely getting training to acquire the license rather than because he had near zero training that would probably show up during the class. The FBI guy repeatedly asked me about this. As near as I could tell he was truthful in telling me he had no previous training. Looking for those sorts of signs could be useful should you decide he needs the attention of the authorities.

If this is someone who is really serious about causing us harm then far better training is probably easily available to him.

Think of this issue another way, as a percentage of the population people with dark colored skin are overrepresented in prison. One could reasonably conclude that people with dark colored skin are less likely to be trustworthy with a firearm because they apparently are more likely to commit crimes. But this denies a basic human right to an entire class of people most of which have done nothing wrong.

Treat people as individuals not as part of some “class”. Isn’t that one of the basic tenets of our form of government and our society? Isn’t the promotion of “class warfare” a major tool of the people who desire the destruction of our form of government? Don’t enable that tool for them.

Quote of the day—Cliff Schecter

If you are looking for the literal embodiment of dysfunction in US political culture and the institutions that serve it, look no further than the National Rifle Association (NRA), and the deadly and divisive role it plays in shaping the political agenda. Specifically, the radically and reliably dishonest, dangerous and deranged legislation they foist upon the American people day in and day out through their purchase of most Republican and many Blue-Dog Democratic officeholders.

We’re talking here about people who shouldn’t be allowed to make their own beds, much less public policy.

Cliff Schecter
October 29, 2011
They have the right to remain silent
[I find it appropriate that someone who says this sort of thing about a civil rights group protecting a specific enumerated right used Al Jazeera as his vehicle for hate. And that he is a weekly columnist for them is no surprise.—Joe]

Cajun intelligence

Via email from my sister-in-law (the one who isn’t a democrat):

Subject: Direct Quote from “Larry, the Cable Guy”

“Even after the Super Bowl victory of the New Orleans Saints, I have noticed a large number of people, implying with bad jokes, that Cajuns aren’t smart. I would like to state for the record that I disagree with that assessment. Anybody who would build a city 5 feet below sea level in a hurricane zone and fill it with Democrats who can’t swim is a damn genius”.

You should not depend on comedians for accuracy. They sometimes stretch or gloss over the the truth a little to make things funnier. In this case Larry, the Cable Guy is wrong. My sister-in-law should know better than to send me something like this. I’ve been to New Orleans and she knew this.

The elevation of New Orleans is not a constant -5’. It varies depending on the location from -6.5’ to +20’ relative to sea level.

Quote of the day—Glen McGregor

I find the destruction of any kind of government data utterly abhorent (sic) and contrary to the concept of open government.

In response, I’m posting publicly a copy of the gun registry database I received via the Access to Information Act in 2007.

Glen McGregor
October 26, 2011
You can have my gun registry data when you pry it from my cold, dead hands
This is regarding the Canadian long gun registry.
[“Any kind of government data”, really? What if it was a registry of one of the following:

  • Undercover police officers.
  • Confidential informants.
  • People who are racially “impure” (the “heroes” of The Turner Diaries would have found this useful).
  • People who are HIV positive.
  • Homosexuals and all their known lovers.
  • Women who had used an abused women shelters.
  • People who are Jewish/black/Christian/Islamic.
  • People who had voted Conservative/Liberal/Whatever.
  • People who subscribed to GayCalgary and Edmonton Magazine.
  • People who have written letters to the editor opposing/supporting Health Canada.

What McGregor apparently doesn’t understand is that this registry is something that should have never been allowed to exist in the first place. There are some datasets which only use is abuse or the risk of such abuse is much greater than any benefits that might be gained. When a list is a set of people who are in the minority and who historically have been victims of oppression then extreme scrutiny must be given to the existence of such a list let alone the publication of such a list.

I will give McGregor a little bit of slack that some of his commenters don’t in that he claims his copy of the list does not have any names or addresses in it beyond the first two characters of the postal code. This helps some. But an oppressor (think of the Belgium Corporal story) could use this data to confiscate all the firearm in a particular postal code area by going door to door demanding to know who owns, for example, the Remington 700 chambered in 30.06 with serial number XXXX.

The right to keep and bear arms is a fundamental natural right and for any government to keep records on the exercise of such a right is to put the right in jeopardy of infringement.

Your “cold, dead hands” McGregor? I don’t think it will go that far. I believe the threat of a prison sentence will be more than sufficient to get the data destroyed. But if not then I don’t have a problem with him dying in prison over it.—Joe]

How We Lose

…when we do lose, and we’ve been losing, on balance, for over 100 years so this matters.

Kevin posted this as an example of truth, which of course it is…as far as it goes.  Excellent as his points are, Epstein doesn’t wrap up the argument.  He gets the ball to the goal line and then punts.  Excellent drive, but we never score.  The enemy gets the ball at the 20 yard line.  As I told Kevin, Epstein ignores the elephant in the living room;

Watch Does U.S. Economic Inequality Have a Good Side? on PBS. See more from PBS NewsHour.

Did you notice the omission?  That is a fairly classic example of an argument between what I call “tweakers” (I know– the term is already taken, but it fits here).  It’s like two dairy farmers arguing over how to get the most milk from their cows.  “Tweak the cows (people) this way, and you get x result, tweak the cows that way and you get y result, etc.”

The discussion went as far as it could without actually mentioning the fact that we aren’t cattle, what we achieve or own is none of the government’s business, and that the United States was created as a place where rights protection was the government’s main job– not tweaking people.  Id est, there is no moral or principled argument unless you count material result or statistical result as a principle, which it isn’t.

As Ayn Rand so eloquently stated some 50 or so years ago– the self appointed champions of conservatism are often the worst enemies of liberty.  By failing to make the moral argument, while the enemy has plenty of (false) moral arguments, we often appear hollow and even hypocritical to the less attentive.

They’re the ones motivated by compassion.  We only have only the cold steel nuts and bolts– economic theories that help the rich while ignoring the plight of the poor and desperate.

Epstein’s cross examiner knew he was scoring points with his audience when he repeatedly used the term “inequality” to falsely describe what Epstein was advocating.

Here’s the elephant in the room– human rights protection.  That one thing that’s so lacking everywhere else in the world.  The banishment of coercion.  The American founding principles.  The shining torch of Liberty that has brought so many people here from all over the world.  The unleashing of the human spirit.

Wrap it up.  Cross the goal line, or we’re doomed.

Hanging them with their own rope

A biometric login for your computer is useful and very cool. A biometric database of 9 million Jews with pictures, fingerprints, name, date of birth, national identification number, and family members is a target.

From 1933 through the early 1940’s IBM made a lot of money helping the Germans collect, sort, and distribute that sort of data.

That target was hit and is now available for free download.

Think about the implications before you advocate for a National ID card or the mandating of ID in order to be functioning member of society. Giving up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety has known consequences.

Update: Tamara knocks it out of the park.

A masters degree in WHAT?

The Clinton School of Public Service at the University of Arkansas brags they are, “The first school in the nation to offer a Master of Public Service (MPS) degree.”

I wonder which side of, “From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs” they are training people for.

Or is this is a school for interns who desire to service public officials?

Quote of the day–pete x tp

The main hindrance to rational regulation of firearms is almost entirely driven by frightened idiots who, apparently, know deep in their hearts that they wouldn’t meet the standard.

pete x tp
Comment to The Media’s Narrow Definition Of “Gun Control”
October 26, 2011
[Either this “Einstein” has never heard of the 2nd Amendment or doesn’t consider the Bill of Rights an obstacle to his agenda.

H/T to Sebastian.—Joe]

Gun rights in the Jewish community

Via The Jewish Week:

While I was recently giving a class at a Modern Orthodox synagogue in New York City on the topic of halachic approaches to weapons I asked this group of 25 people (most between 50-65 years old) how many of them owned guns. I expected 1 or 2 hands to emerge but was astonished to find that about 50-60% admitted to having a gun at home. Shortly after, I learned that there is an Orthodox organization now training Orthodox Jews to use guns and to bring them to synagogue as a form of “protection.” If the religious Jewish community in America has joined the consumers of guns then we must also enter into the national gun discourse.

Wow! This is awesome!

The rest of the article is rather negative on gun ownership with things like:

The Mishnah describes weapons as “shameful” things to be seen with (Shabbat 63a). One should be embarrassed to own a weapon, even in the case that they must.

But the important part is that it may be that U.S. Jews are recognizing the utility of possessing the skills and tools to defend themselves rather than being totally dependent  upon the government. Even though this would seem to be a “Well, DUH!” conclusion (German Police Battalion involvement in direct killing operations were responsible for at least 1 million deaths, see also this book) this is a huge change from 10 or 15 years ago.

If 50-60% possess firearms then most of the rest will be willing to have open-minded discussions about guns. This means we win as well as the Jewish community.

[Slightly off topic but one semi-famous Jewish author just signed up for the Precision Rifle Clinic at Boomershoot 2012.]

Quote of the day—Ken Lewenza

The introduction of Bill C-19 today in the House of Commons, and its possible coming into force, will set Canada’s gun control efforts back decades.

Ken Lewenza
Canadian Auto Workers National President
October 25, 2011
Harper’s Gun Bill Sets Canada Back Decades, CAW says
[I find that hard to believe since the act being repealed was passed in 1995. But it does set them back a good bit. Now if they can just be pushed into extinction.

And why is the Canadian Auto Workers getting into a debate about gun control?

Which cars sold in the U.S. are made in Canada? I want to make sure I don’t buy any.—Joe]

Obama to instigate a revolution

Someone has their tin-foil hat on way too tight:

The Obama regime is preparing to instigate a revolution for the purpose of their being able to hold on to power and complete the enslavement of the American people.

According to this report the “Occupy Wall Street” protests that began in New York City nearly a month ago have now spread to at least 25 other US cities and show no sign of abating any time soon.

From what I have seen in Seattle there isn’t that much going on and what is going on isn’t the material of a revolution.

Good Point

About Pres. Reagan.  I recall that he added an extra 5 cents tax per gallon on our fuel, ostensibly to repair the failing highway system, because the gazillions they were already collecting and wasting weren’t enough.  Reagan then held that extra tax money over the state of Idaho’s head, saying we had to change our drinking age from 19 to 21 or we wouldn’t see any of the money they were taking from us.  Idaho caved.

That radically changed the economies of all Idaho border towns.

No one seems to have learned anything from that– when our drinking age was lower and our sales tax far lower than bordering states, we got tons of business from those states.  We don’t have that so much anymore, so now our idiot Republican Governor has his thooper thpecial “Hire One” program– you’re supposed to call the state apparatchik and see if your business qualifies to be part of a state government jobs program.  Oh goody.  To call him a fool is being generous.  Right– I want to put my capital at risk, create new products, bring them to market and worry my ass off the whole time while getting robbed by this mutherfucker, so he can take credit for my work.  I think I’d rather die.

Kind of like our country as a whole.  Some educated kid from Germany was complaining to me recently about the “Fat Cats” sheltering their money in other countries (other than the United States, where he lives).  Those dirty bastards who won’t hold still and let us rob them…how dare they?  I asked him if our country shouldn’t be the place people from all over the planet come to secure their property rights.  That’s what we were supposed to be.  Remember?  He stood up and left, saying he didn’t want to get himself in trouble.  Good riddance.  I have that effect on a lot of people.

Quote of the day—Barron Barnett

Existing gun control legislation provided the ATF with leverage over FFLs to coerce them into transactions they knew to be criminal. Gun control provided the ATF with the resources and power to organize and conduct the operation. Lastly, gun control was the root cause of the operation itself. The operation was conducted in an effort to create a crisis that would warrant the further restriction of firearms. This restriction would either be that of ownership by law abiding citizens, or that in preventing new purchase by a law abiding citizen.

Barron Barnett
October 22, 2011
Fast and Furious, Root Cause Analysis
[It’s a little bit of a “Catch 22” here. Certainly the existence of gun control enabled the crimes committed by the government agents. But had there not been some laws restricting firearm sales there would have not been a crime for the government agents to commit.

I think the lesson to be learned here is that Ayn Rand was correct. The government has power because it has the power to create criminals.—Joe]