Archive for the ‘Regulation’ Category

HotAir has this post today on the Armatix iP1, a pistol which is wholly unsuitable for defense against anything other than paraplegic squirrels.  It’s another twist on the idea of the so-called “smart gun” that only allows a user wearing an RFID-chipped watch to fire it.  I’ll elaborate on its uselessness later, but first, I’d like to discuss the magazine disconnect.

The magazine disconnect is a bug feature, primarily in handguns, that disables a firearm when the magazine is removed.  It will also disable a firearm if the magazine isn’t properly seated and the mechanism isn’t engaged.

The supposed benefit to this is that if a police officer is fighting a suspect, the officer can take the magazine out, rendering the gun inert.  That it renders the officer’s gun inert for the officer is never considered… or that simply jarring the magazine slightly loose will also disable it is never considered.  For the citizen, the supposed benefit is… for the children or something.

For a citizen carrying a pistol for self-defense (or for law enforcement), there is a need for a firearm to work the first time every time.  And it simply adds one more thing to go wrong that wasn’t there before.  If a magazine doesn’t seat right, rather than have one round fired and the need for immediate action to “tap rack bang” and get the gun working, it simply means there is no first shot.  That lack of a first shot means the immediate threat that’s caused the defender to draw is going to overwhelm them.

I can’t think of any law enforcement agencies that carry pistols with a magazine disconnect, though examples where the magazine disconnect is rejected are quite frequent.

It makes a tactical reload more dangerous, because rather than changing one magazine for another with a pistol still carrying one round… it means reloads are changing one magazine for another with a pistol that’s been turned into a brick for the time being.  And if you don’t seat that reload properly, your pistol is still bricked.  If for whatever reason your pistol magazine well (the place the magazine goes, for you non-gun folks), has become dirty, whether because you’re rolling across the ground of a Christmas tree lot or if it’s just filled with pocket lint, you’ve rendered your gun inert.

Magazine disconnects objectively make guns more dangerous by making them less reliable.  The push for “smart” guns is like saying knives should be made safer by making them dull – folks who work with knives know it’s a dull knife that’s unreliable that causes injuries.  To the uninformed or to a vapid idiot, a dull knife seems less dangerous.  Magazine disconnects also make guns more dangerous by allowing casual users to rely on the disconnect, thinking that a firearm with no magazine is “safe” without checking the actual chamber.

Magazine disconnects, however, are not called magazine disconnects by the state of California.  They’re called magazine “safeties” and are mandatory.

Which brings us to the Armatix iP1, as introduced in the Washington Post as the “iPhone of guns”.

One of California’s largest firearm stores recently added a peculiar new gun to its shelves. It requires an accessory: a black waterproof watch.

The watch’s primary purpose is not to provide accurate time, though it does. The watch makes the gun think. Electronic chips inside the gun and the watch communicate with each other. If the watch is within close reach of the gun, a light on the grip turns green. Fire away. No watch means no green light. The gun becomes a paperweight.

A dream of gun-control advocates for decades, the Armatix iP1 is the country’s first smart gun. Its introduction is seen as a landmark in efforts to reduce gun violence, suicides and accidental shootings. Proponents compare smart guns to automobile air bags — a transformative add-on that gun owners will demand. But gun rights advocates are already balking, wondering what happens if the technology fails just as an intruder breaks in.

A bug has been added in the name of “safety”.  Magazine not in?  Gun won’t work.  Not wearing your magic watch?  Gun won’t work.  Magic watch battery dies?  Gun won’t work.

Criminal identifies your magic watch arm and knows how to disarm you?  Gun can’t help.  Don’t wear your magic watch because it looks stupid and has to go on the wrong wrist?  Gun won’t work.  Get hassled by police who see you with a gun-watch?  Gun brings you problems.

If your kid can find your magic gun, he can also find the magic watch.  If you’re going to off yourself with your own gun, you can find your magic watch.

James Mitchell, the “extremely pro-gun” owner of the Oak Tree Gun Club, north of Los Angeles, isn’t one of the skeptics. His club’s firearms shop is the only outlet in the country selling the iP1. “It could revolutionize the gun industry,” Mitchell declared.

When someone has to go out and say they’re “extremely pro-gun”, and yet they’re introducing a product that makes lawmakers salivate at rights they can now legislate away… I suspect this guy’s another Jeremy Alcede.

Lawmakers around the country have been intrigued by the possibilities. New Jersey passed a hotly contested law in 2002 requiring that only smart guns be sold in the state within three years of a smart gun being sold anywhere in the country. A similar measure made it through the California Senate last year, and at the federal level, Rep. John F. Tierney(D-Mass.) also has introduced a mandate.

Looks like James Mitchell’s “extremely pro-gun” stance has just led to New Jersey laws activating in 2017 that will ban all gun sales except for a glitchy .22 pistol.

Smart guns, advocates say, will have huge appeal to buyers. “If you have two cars, and one has an air bag and one doesn’t, are you going to buy the one without the air bag?” said Belinda Padilla, president of Armatix’s U.S. operation. “It’s your choice, but why would you do that?”

Belinda Padilla is an opportunist and clearly an idiot when it comes to both gun rights and self-defense, but she sure knows how to be a crony and make something that will appeal to government, who will mandate her product.

A better example would be “if you have two cars, and one has a starter that requires a digital signature from the powered-RFID key where if the battery goes dead in the key, you’ll be left stranded and unable to drive; and you have a car that runs on a mechanical key, are you going to drive the one with the glitchy system that will fail you and leave you stranded?”

I’ve only been stranded by a mechanical key… never.  But I’ve been stranded a handful of times due to dying batteries on RFID-only keys.  If I’d needed the car to start right then and there… or even needed the doors to unlock right then and there, I’d’ve been screwed.

It’s one thing to have something go wrong with a machine, it’s another to have failure specifically engineered into the machine.

Teret and others point to now-commonplace safety enhancements that Americans were skeptical about at first: air bags and smoke detectors. “They thought the air bag would kill them,” said Teret, who did early work on air-bag technology. “They thought it would shove them out the back window, that it would explode. It takes awhile to dispel these mythologies.”

Comparing it to airbags actually may be more accurate than they think.  Airbags deploy violently and injure people in minor accidents, and occasionally deploy because of damaged or faultly sensors, or due to jarring on rough roads.  Airbags require holding steering wheels differently in order to avoid being crippled by them.  I’ve personally been injured by an airbag, and have had a handful of coworkers injured by airbags that deployed spontaneously due to any number of electrical glitches or faulty sensors.

For people who drive on rough roads in rural areas, an airbag can be a huge liability, because cars may not know the difference between a bounce on a rock or an impact.

And also, Airbags Kill More Kids Than School Shootings:

Life with airbags has turned out very differently from the one promised by Joan Claybrook back in 1977. That’s when she told Congress that those friendly balloons in every car would pillow away 40 percent of crash deaths each year.

Last year, Dwight Childs, 29, of Broadview Heights, Ohio, screwed up. He ran a red light, resulting in a 10-mph crash. It was exactly the sort of mistake airbag supporters have always said, “you shouldn’t have to die for.” Childs’s two-month-old son, Jacob Andrew, strapped into a rear-facing child seat on the passenger side of a 1997 Ford F-150 pickup, was killed by the airbag, and Childs himself was charged with vehicular homicide.

The man’s crime? He didn’t switch off the airbag.

Judge Kenneth Spanagel piled on the punishment: 180 days in jail, suspended except for two cruel and unusual days; Childs must check in to jail on Jacob’s first birthday and on the first anniversary of the crash. Childs was ordered to make radio and TV ads about airbag safety for the Ohio Department of Public Safety. He was also placed on probation for three years, his license was suspended, and he had to pay $500 in fines and court costs.

I’ll boil it down for you. First, government forced this man to buy airbags, because bureaucrats in Washington know better than he what’s needed for his well-being. Then, when he failed to deactivate the safety feature he was compelled to buy, it sent him to jail. Airbags have turned America’s sense of justice on its head.

That government force is a big part of this story.  From the Silicon Valley elitist do-gooder who came up with the prize for bringing a “smart” gun to the market:

Conway, out in Silicon Valley, said: “You let the free enterprise system take over. Just like everyone opted into the iPhone and abandoned the flip phone and BlackBerry, consumers will vote with their feet. We want gun owners to feel like they are dinosaurs if they aren’t using smart guns.”

Except New Jersey already passed a mandate.  Other legislatures will follow.  Gun ban groups have been pushing this nonsense for years, as more guns can be banned because they can point to the bug-as-a-feature Armatix as a “success” that means everything else can go away.  The same has already been done with magazine disconnects.  The same has also been done with loaded-chamber indicators (which don’t interfere with function as much, but do make for a false sense of security, and do establish new banning criteria on all guns that don’t have them).

The objective is the same as the microstamping scam – ban guns by mandating technology that’s onerous, dangerous, and eliminates most of the market.

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The same style of government force objectives are pushed in the automotive world through CAFE standards.  Statist knows-what’s-best-for-you government doesn’t like certain cars, so they require automakers to not make them by putting restrictions on them that can’t be met.  Same government force used to mandate the use of nonexistent fuels.

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One final note – police and law enforcement won’t have these in their guns.  Ever.

Car thieves disable and manipulate RFID systems with computers in order to steal cars.  Any criminal with forethought could disable police firearms.

Or, in another scary thought, any government with a broadcaster could be disabling citizen firearms.  Makes confiscation needless if a gov agency can just brick a gun with the click of a mouse.

Beretta has already noted there “There always seems to be a problem with Maryland“, and now Beretta is coming up with solutions to their Maryland problem.

Written by Ugo Gussalli Beretta in the Washington Times:

My family has operated our business from the same small town in northern Italy for 500 years. This means that when we make a commitment to a local community, our hope is to do so for decades, if not centuries, to come.

We apply this same philosophy to all of our factories and locations throughout the world. Such a commitment is not a one-way street, though.

Ugo Beretta makes the point that Beretta brings not only jobs, but makes firearms for the US military and citizens to defend themselves… and yet they’re treated poorly.

Our business has grown in recent years, and because of that, we needed to expand production in our U.S facility, located in Accokeek, just outside of Washington, D.C., in the Maryland suburbs.

Unfortunately, as we were planning that expansion, Maryland’s governor and legislature voted in favor of new regulations that unfairly attack products we make and that our customers want.

These regulations also demean our law-abiding customers, who must now be fingerprinted like criminals before they can be allowed to purchase one of our products.

And Beretta stands up for their people and their customers by voting with their feet and their dollars.

…because of these new restrictions and the pattern of harassment aimed at lawful firearm owners we have seen in Maryland over the decades, we decided to expand our facilities in a state that shows more respect for citizens who exercise their Second Amendment rights.

We chose Tennessee for our new facility expansion. Our plans for that location are extensive and long-lasting.

We chose Tennessee because the governor and legislators in that state understand what it means to support businesses (such as through job recruitment and training programs) that improve employment in the state without treating companies as a necessary evil.

We chose Tennessee also because the vast majority of its residents and their elected officials have shown that they respect and honor the American tradition of personal freedoms, including the right to bear arms.

Just like Magpul left Colorado, Beretta is moving away from Maryland and moving towards Tennessee.

Political decisions have consequences.

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I wonder if Beretta is still making the fairly well-regarded 96D?

beretta 96dNot a huge fan of the safety on the slide… but I gotta give credit for a company taking a stance like that.

Maybe I’ll just look into a 92FS instead just to see how the great 80s action movie handgun would hold up in a pistol competition.  Yippie-kay-ay indeed.

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Minor addendum here, but Beretta also currently owns SAKO and Tikka, two Finnish rifle manufacturers who make some of the best guns on the market.  Beretta’s stance for citizens’ rights makes one of those Tikka T3s that much more attractive.

tikka t3 liteIn fact, coupled with another pro-2A business, very, very attractive.

Drudge already made the comparison, as have several other people.  It’s immediate, and immediately understandable.

Obama will negotiate with Iran, but not with Republicans in congress.

Iran is funding terrorism, is a state sponsor of terrorism, and yet the Obama administration calls Republicans terrorists.

Republicans are pushing through bills that will fund all of government except Obamacare – a wholly transformative, unconstitutional mandate that demands that every living citizen pay a tax in order to exist, that changes the nature of the citizen to the government and ignores that the Constitution limits the government (something even ignored by SCOTUS).

For me personally, a government shutdown will be a huge hassle.  I’d very much like for the Democrats to do the jobs their offices demand and pass budgets that fund necessary functions of government.  Then they can bicker over Obamacare.  But since Democrats refuse to allow for passage of those bills as they’re about their agenda and single-payer socialism, and are instead saying “give us Obamacare or we’ll shut it all down and blame you”, I guess a government shutdown is the next best option.  I’ll take the hassle in my own life that comes with a government shutdown for the knowledge that a government health care system is being stopped.  And it can be stopped.

Anyone who’s dealt with government health care (I know people with broken bones that healed wrong while waiting on government paperwork, and had to be rebroken and set by private doctors because government-related injuries were never treated by government) knows it’s a pathetic system of rationing.  Without the ability to use personal resources to move things along, or to benefit from charity, or from experimental treatment, or even the basic efficiency of the private sector, it’s nothing but a failure all the way around.  But don’t take my word for it.

Here’s hoping the government is funded, but not Obamacare.  And if we can’t get that, here’s hoping for a shutdown until the Democrats finally listen to what the American people want… which isn’t a 22,000 page bill and regulations they read after they pass it.

red tape tower obamacare

Remember Obama’s 23 proposed executive orders/actions on guns?

Two just happened.  They’re listed in propaganda form at Whitehouse.gov.

The first one is that folks who are purchasing National Firearms Act (NFA) regulated items (shotguns or rifles with 14″ barrels, silencers, and $10,000 machineguns, etc.) now have to ask their local law enforcement for permission regardless of how they want to buy it.  Meaning that local law enforcement can simply say “no” to their purchases and deny them firearms that are already arbitrarily regulated.

John Lott gives a good summary of what was reported and what the facts are.

The short short summary is that this only applies to NFA trusts and corporations.  If an individual owns an NFA item (like a 14″ shotgun or 14″ rifle, or silencer, etc.), they have to ask their chiel local law enforcement officer for permission to bring it in to the new area.  If it belongs to an individual, the individual is left with some problems if they, as a registered owner, tries to move into a neighborhood where the CLEO won’t sign off on it.  Are they allowed to have the NFA item anymore?  Are they allowed to move there without violating new laws?  All kinds of problems can crop up.  Many people solve this by simply creating a trust or corporation to purchase their item, then they control the trust.  The paper trust/corporation owns the item, and was exempt from having to ask CLEO permission.

This is a very specific subset of firearms enthusiasts and gun owners, as machineguns are prohibitively expensive due to artificially limited supply, and short barreled items or silencers are usually only owned by serious enthusiasts (or folks who like to protect their hearing and not annoy their neighbors).  There are still NICS checks involved, there’s no “work-around”, and there’s still a pile of paperwork.  A criminal with access to a machine shop can crank out plenty more dangerous things much more easily and at lower cost.

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The second is that all those horrible military weapons that we gave to our allies decades ago can no longer be imported.  All the M1 Garands and M1 Carbines that fed the Civilian Marksmanship Program for decades are what’s being targeted.

Sebastian at PAGunBlog elaborates:

But by law the State Department gets to have a say when it comes to weapons that have been exported by our government to foreign governments. If those governments wish to dispose of those firearms by selling them to private importers in the United States, they have to have sign-off from the State Department. That’s where this EO comes in. Basically, the Korean government still has a lot of M1 Carbines and M1 Garands sitting in warehouses that they’d like to sell to US collectors or to the Civilian Marksmanship Program. The Obama Administration has been unwilling to sign off of any of these re-importations to date. All this executive order does is make that official policy. In short, it doesn’t actually change much from the status quo. Without the requirement for State Department signoff, those M1s would be legal to import without any permission from the US government.

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A little more backstory to explain what they are and what they mean.  In 1934 when the National Firearms Act (NFA) was passed, the fedgov decided to make things like short-barreled shotguns and rifles, silencers and machineguns illegal by taxing them.  The cost for the tax was set at $200, which at the time was so prohibitively expensive that only the super-wealthy in the Ruling Class could afford them.  Fast forward a few decades and inflation has made it so $200 is still steep, but not out-of-bounds for many folks who want to own such equipment.

Machineguns required registration, but the Hughes Amendment in 1986 cut short the supply of MGs, so now the only MGs available are those that were around and registered between 1934 and 1986. This has driven the price of even a crappy machinegun into the multiple thousands of dollars range.  Things like silencers, however, are still able to be manufactured and added, and have recently become a lot more popular in the US, especially as states legalize them for hunting.  If that seems odd, consider wearing hearing protection while you’re trying to stalk your quarry – either you can hear your prey or you can protect your hearing, not both without dropping money on expensive ear protection, and not for everyone in your group, and not for everyone else in the forest or across the prairie with you.  Short-barreled shotguns and rifles were ruled unprotected by Second Amendment by a 1930s-era SCOTUS case which ruled them unsuitable for sporting or militia use.  Except virtually every fedgov agency uses shotguns with 14″ barrels, which are apparently “unsuitable” for you to own for the same purposes… without the $200 stamp.  The fedgov’s own use of such weapons disproves the 1930s SCOTUS decision, but the fedgov isn’t about to say “yeah, I suppose those are useful for X purposes”… and the 2nd Amendment doesn’t require anything to suit any purposes, so it would only be supporting a definition inconsistent with the Constitution.  I’d say I digress, but this whole section here is digression.

There were two ways to buy such items – one was personally, the other through a trust or corporation.  If you buy them personally, you had to ask the chief local law enforcement officer’s permission to buy them, or permission to move into his neighborhood.  If he says no, you don’t get to exercise a regulated & taxed right.  Trusts and corporations were exempt.  Now they aren’t.

So for all the folk who have to deal with anti-gun politicians appointing anti-gun police chiefs, they just lost their right (that was already turned into a regulated privilege) to go shoot deer with a silencer and not disturb the entire forest with a shot, or to go to the range and not annoy the neighbors.

Worth noting is that in many European countries where firearm ownership is severely limited and restricted, silencers can be bought over the counter.  Why?  Because it’s impolite to irritate your neighbors with gunfire.  The US is the only place where silencers are considered to be some kind of Hollywood ninja assassin weapon, rather than what they are – mufflers:

oleg volk silencer

From Free Enterprise (last year):

Tis the season to give thanks. And for the last 80 years, the federal government has required raisin producers to “give thanks” for the privilege of selling their raisins nationally by requiring them to fork over up to half of their raisins – for free. A lawsuit raising a constitutional challenge to the program has now made its way to the U.S. Supreme Court. The case is Horne v. Department of Agriculture.

The program, operated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, has a rather Orwellian-sounding name – the “Raisin Marketing Order.” In a nutshell, under this program, every year, as a condition for “letting” farmers sell their raisin crops in interstate commerce, the federal government has taken up to 47% of the farmers’ raisins – often for no payment at all, or below the cost of producing the raisins. The program has its origins in Great Depression efforts to fix the prices of agricultural crops. Don’t care much for raisins? Similar programs cover a variety of other agricultural products, such as walnuts, almonds, prunes, tart cherries – and cranberries! That’s something to chew on as you sit down to your Thanksgiving meal tomorrow.

From Free Enterprise (a few weeks ago):

The Supreme Court overruled a decision that allowed the federal government to attempt to strong-arm raisin farmers, Marvin and Laura Horne, into giving up half their raisin crop.

…When the government told the Hornes to hand over the raisins or their cash equivalent, the Hornes fought back.  Their legal fight began over a decade ago and the federal government has levied almost $700,000 in fines against them.  Today, Marvin and Laura won their Supreme Court case.

In today’s decision, the Supreme Court held that the raisin farmers could use the Constitution’s Takings Clause to defend their property rights in the enforcement proceedings the government initiated after the Hornes refused to hand over their raisins.  (The Constitution’s Takings Clause says that the federal government must provide just compensation when the government takes a person’s private property.)

It’s nice to see SCOTUS pushing back against the government and the government’s regulatory oppression of businesses.  The problem is the government wanted to keep their $700,000 in fines and then make them file again to get the money back that the government illegally took.  Thieves with the force of law.

Worland, Wyoming.  Photo by ShortTimer.

A friend of the blog sent this news story a few days back – from the UK Register:

Plans for fully 3D-printed gun go online next week
The Liberator pistol causes political panic

Defense Distributed, the pending non-profit that plans to make 3D-printed weaponry available for anyone with such a printer, will release the blueprints for a fully-working plastic firearm next week.

The UK Register is pretty open about their bias in the story, which they at least try to make funny, but it’s on the level of McNugget jokes.  But they do point out that Democrats have never seen anything they don’t wish to control.

“Security checkpoints, background checks, and gun regulations will do little good if criminals can print plastic firearms at home and bring those firearms through metal detectors with no one the wiser,” said Congressman Steve Israel (D-NY) in a statement.

“When I started talking about the issue of plastic firearms months ago,” Israel said, “I was told the idea of a plastic gun is science-fiction. Now that this technology appears to be upon us, we need to act now to extend the ban on plastic firearms.”

HotAir today has a story citing that ol’ Chuck Schumer, who’s never met a ban he didn’t like, and demands total control over you groveling peasants who need to kneel before his Ruling Class dictatorial power – because it’s what’s good for you – also wants to ban it.

defense distributed liberator complete via defcad

Bloomberg’s own pet news agency even criticizes Schumer and thinks they need to forget about plastic guns and ban the rest first.

Should we light our hair on fire about plastic guns made with 3D printers?

Too late for Senator Charles Schumer. The combustible New York Democrat is encouraging hysteria over the prospect of criminals using 3D printers to manufacture firearms, possibly to assassinate the president. “We’re facing a situation where anyone—a felon, a terrorist—can open a gun factory in their garage ,and the weapons they make will be undetectable,” Schumer said. “It’s stomach-churning.”

Bloomberg’s own people don’t care about actual criminals, though:

…If you’ve got the skills, you can already make a gun in your basement, and there are less complicated ways to do it than using a $10,000 3D printer and computer set-up. Why would bad guys bother making comic book firearms when they can go online and order anything from a Glock 9 mm pistol to a Bushmaster military-style semiautomatic rifle with 30-round ammunition magazines?

Perhaps the evil doer wouldn’t want to leave a credit-card trail. Then he pays cash at a Main Street gun shop, a weekend gun show, or to the criminal down the block who sells black market firepower from the trunk of his car. Or the crook steals or borrows his gun.

Point being, ban real guns first.  Get the “dangerous ones”, then ban all the rest.

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The plastic Liberator pistol is a very interesting thing, and not just in its mechanics.

defense distributed liberator parts

Perhaps the most interesting is what’s in the name.  A Russian professor of mine that taught Chekhov explained that Chekhov’s names always were indicative of the character; and names are often very, very important.  Going a very long way back in history, true names were a method to power over someone – either due to knowing someone and being able to identify them in a time before pictures, or out of a very early belief in names as a form of magic.  Here, too, in a very fascinating way, the name was chosen for a reason, and is very indicative of what this pistol really represents.

Here with the plastic Liberator, we have all that liberty and liberation connotates, that this will free the information and free the people to have the tools to arm themselves against tyranny.  We also have its historical antecedent, the FP-45 Liberator pistol:

M1942 liberator pistol

It was made on the cheap, and made to be distributed to resistance fighters.

m1942 liberator pistol with directions

It had abysmal accuracy, but the purpose of the pistol was very specific.

It was made to shoot occupying forces up close and personal.  It was made to shoot Nazi dictator thugs at extreme close range.

Some computer geeks at The Verge yammer on about the convergence between “crypto-anarchists” and guns, but for them, history doesn’t exist before the Palo Alto labs, apparently.

Cyberculture icon Stewart Brand’s famous notion that “information wants to be free” has been an almost ubiquitous refrain ever since utopian-minded hackers began populating computer networks in the 1980s. Today, 3D printing has given the phrase a whole new meaning, allowing raw data to become real world weapons with the click of a button. Cody R. Wilson, the antagonistic founder of Defense Distributed, is taking that idea to its logical — and hugely controversial — extreme.

Except it’s not an extreme at all…

(DefCad’s) his reasoning, he claims, isn’t really about the Second Amendment at all — it’s about technological progress rendering the very concept of gun control meaningless.

“It’s more radical for us,” he told Motherboard in “Click Print Gun,” a recent mini-doc about the dark side of the 3D printing revolution. “There are people all over the world downloading our files and we say ‘good.’ We say you should have access to this. You simply should.”

If this all sounds very similar to the good gospel spread by Brand and advanced by progressives and activists like the late Aaron Swartz, you’re hearing it right. But even without the context of Wilson’s operation, firearms and freedom of information share a strangely similar history, an oft-overlooked ideological confluence between hackers and gun advocates that seems to be gaining momentum.

Except it’s not extreme at all, as guns existed well before computers…

oleg volk before 1934 machinegun by mail

If you go back before 1934, there were no restrictions on guns except if you were black or another wrong color/status.  There were restrictions on people, and that’s what was understood.  Guns aren’t dangerous, criminals are dangerous because they don’t restrict themselves to any laws or social mores.  Guns weren’t dangerous to the people in power, freed black former slaves with guns were dangerous, because guns are tools of power.  Today, as then, it’s not the guns that are dangerous – Schumer and his ilk are surrounded by security with guns and send their kids to schools with guns and will come after you with guns – it’s you being armed that’s dangerous to his power.  Guns are just a tool, as they always have been.

Guns used to be made by smiths, but anyone with access to some basic tools and a bit of skill can make them.  Zip guns have been made out of virtually nothing for decades.  Submachineguns are relatively easy to make, and some famous SMGs were even made in facilities as simple as bicycle shops.

oleg volk sten smg illegal guns will be cheap quiet

The next leftist dictator-tyrant argument is then to control ammo and powder, which has a few major flaws.  Namely, their enforcers use them, and their enforcers provide criminals with guns and ammo, so the criminal argument goes right out the window.  Of course it isn’t about criminals, it’s about making you into a criminal so they can tell you how to live and make you live the right way.  It’s never about the guns, it’s about the control.  Components to make ammunition aren’t impossible to come by, and conventional ammunition is only needed once – until an armed instrument of the state has his tools liberated.

The entire concept of homemade guns isn’t extreme.  Going back a few decades, not only could you buy a machinegun by mail, no matter who you were, but you could build whatever you liked.  There was a great heyday of gun manufacturing in the early 20th century before regulations started becoming overwhelming.  John Moses Browning was designing his greatest works in the early 20th Century – from pistols to machineguns, many of which are still in use today.  Consider that the M2 heavy machine gun is something that’s been in service for nearly 100 years.  It’s not that there aren’t more designers for weapons with better ideas, it’s that government regulations have limited the marketplace and made it more difficult to experiment.  Government has stalled technological development – developments that used to be made in mechanic shops when designers and engineers and skilled craftsmen got together and designed new tools.

There were virtually no regulations or restrictions on firearms for a hundred years or more, with the exception of those laws meant to target blacks, American Indians, and other specific groups that the majority wanted to oppress; and a few local laws.

Defense Distributed to some degree is just bringing things back to how they were for generations.  Before, the government trusted citizens and so it didn’t restrict citizens, soon, the government simply won’t be able to restrict citizens; and if they do restrict enough, there will be tools of liberation available.

Part 1 here, mostly about food and people who want the government to dictate to them how they should eat.

And today, part 2, as we look at a Time Magazine piece titled “Tread on Me“.

America was born from resistance to tyranny, and our skepticism of authority is a healthy tradition. But we’re pretty free.

That’s good enough, right?  We’re “pretty free”.  It’s about time we move on in the Tytler Cycle and get back to bondage!  Woo-hoo!  Bondage!  The state will make us free from responsibility and dangers of the world!  They know what’s best for me!

the Don’t Tread on Me slippery-slopers on both ends of the political spectrum tend to forget that Big Government helps protect other important rights

Doesn’t work that way.  This is a question of whether people believe in more or less government control.  Americans believe in less government control, have traditionally always believed in less government control, and only ever believe in having government control them when they’ve been brainwashed and programmed.

But standby for incoming collectivist BS…

Like the right of a child to watch a marathon or attend first grade without getting massacred—or, for that matter, the right to live near a fertilizer factory without it blowing up your house.

There are no such rights.  To be free from danger is not only impossible, but even reduction of danger is not a right – it something paid for by someone’s work – whether it be the soldier, policeman, or factory manager and safety staff.

I guess you could call me a statist.

How about one who will lick the hand that feeds with his chains resting upon him, and someone who I would wish posterity would forget was my countryman?

Go ahead, quote the Ben Franklin line about those who would sacrifice some liberty for security deserving neither.

You forgot the last part – they deserve neither – and will lose both.

But what about the rights of 8-year-old Martin Richard, blown away after watching his dad finish the marathon? Who safeguarded the liberty of 6-year-old Charlotte Bacon, gunned down in her classroom in her new pink dress? What about Perry Calvin and Morris Bridges and the other victims of the West Texas explosion? Nobody read them their rights.

There are no such rights as to be free from danger – and there can be none.

This kind of high-minded utopian fantasy was cranked out back in the 1930s and 1940s by the FDR administration.  There were even oaths made to defend the freedom from want and freedom from fear.

fdr freedom from want fear

Photo by ShortTimer

It is, by itself, nonsense.

Life? What ‘right’ to life has a man who is drowning in the Pacific? The ocean will not hearken to his cries. What ‘right’ to life has a man who must die to save his children? If he chooses to save his own life, does he do so as a matter of ‘right’? If two men are starving and cannibalism is the only alternative to death, which man’s right is ‘unalienable’? And is it ‘right’? As to liberty, the heroes who signed the great document pledged themselves to buy liberty with their lives. Liberty is never unalienable; it must be redeemed regularly with the blood of patriots or it always vanishes. Of all the so-called natural human rights that have ever been invented, liberty is least likely to be cheap and is never free of cost.

- Robert Heinlein, Starship Troopers

You cannot legislate industrial accidents out of existence (unless you obliterate industry entirely – which is a goal of the left as a tool to fight Manbearpig).

You cannot legislate madmen out of existence.  You can forcibly disarm the populace, and leave them at the mercy of governmental ruler madmen like maniac cop Chris Dorner.  You can leave them at the mercy of government to make them “safe”.

You do all of those by destroying liberty, something that high-minded collectivist utopians have done in the past to construct human nature into what they want it to be – to “mold the world closer to their hearts’ desire”.

And it almost always looks the same in the end.

H

In contrast to those statist desires, you can safeguard the liberty of 6 year-old Charlotte Bacon.  You need a rough man ready to do violence on her behalf to safeguard that liberty – that liberty needs to be bought, but the left is terrified of the tools of violence to the point where they irrationally declare that to make the gazelle safe from the lion, you must strip the gazelle’s horns.

By the left’s logic, to make the child safe, you must leave her unguarded; and target those who would do her no harm but instead do seek to protect her.  There are people who are actively willing to put their own lives in harm’s way, but they are called monsters for demanding real security.  They are demonized for understanding the tools and nature of violence as defense and deterrent.

You can begin to defend the life of 8 year-old Martin Richard more by identifying the threat and dealing with the threat when it rears its head.  What killed him was islamic terrorism.  We know this.  We all know this, but our government denies it on the basis that their ideology rejects making that judgement.  By the response of the authorities in the Boston bombing case, there will be no more fatalities from those particular two terrorists.  The hundreds of lives saved, like the baker’s new suit in the Broken Window Fallacy, are easily forgotten because they never materialized.  There were no more terrorist attacks from those two because the terrorists were pursued (at a cost of life and harm) and stopped.

Yet there are still high-minded utopians who believe that if they just apologize enough, that if they are sensitive enough, they can stop people who chant for their deaths in the street through just well wishes.

And here’s where the Time writer gets worse:

Our rights are not inviolate. Just as the First Amendment doesn’t let us shout “Fire!” in a crowded theater, the Second Amendment shouldn’t let us have assault weapons designed for mass slaughter.

This is, as Jonah Goldberg would say, bonesnappingly stupid.

The First Amendment totally and completely does let us shout “Fire!” in a crowded theater.

If the government could mandate a white-noise generator that would specifically tune into the sound of a human voice shouting the word “Fire!” so that it could never again be said in a theater and the First Amendment were restricted, what would happen when there is a fire and no one can shout the word?  What happens when no one can give the alarm?  What happens when that lifesaving tool is denied?  It would result in people burned to death.

The Second Amendment totally and completely does let us have modern firearms.  I have yet to take or instruct a firearms class wherein I have taught or been taught to use an “assault weapon” for “mass slaughter”.  Sorry, just doesn’t work that way.

The Second Amendment protects the natural right of self defense.  It codifies it in the Constitution and ensures that the tools of self defense will not be denied.  It does the same in that sense as the First Amendment protecting the word “Fire!”.  It exists as the last full response against oppression, large and small, whether it be a lone criminal or the force of a dictatorial government.

If used improperly or abused, it’s a crime, just like yelling fire when there’s no fire.  If used properly, it’s a wholly necessary lifesaving right; and it protects tools that allow for lives to be saved.  And just like the loss of yelling “Fire!”, if it is taken away, it ends up the same – the result is people burned to death.

To revisit this quote from the “Tread on Me” masochist:

Those of us who support aggressive government action to protect the public ought to acknowledge that it does, at the margins, limit individual rights—the rights of gun owners, the rights of business owners, the rights of the accused. Go ahead, quote the Ben Franklin line about those who would sacrifice some liberty for security deserving neither. But what about the rights of 8-year-old Martin Richard, blown away after watching his dad finish the marathon? Who safeguarded the liberty of 6-year-old Charlotte Bacon, gunned down in her classroom in her new pink dress? What about Perry Calvin and Morris Bridges and the other victims of the West Texas explosion? Nobody read them their rights.

The Bill of Rights is there to limit government.  Governments create oppression.  In a state of nature, there may be terror, but there is no all-encompassing institution that can deny you your natural rights.  The Constitution is there as a contract of free men that created a limited government with the intention of protecting all of our natural rights possible while providing us tools to ensure greater protection for all as well.

I’ve been told that invoking the death of innocents is an emotional appeal rather than a logical argument. And I do admit these tragedies make me angry. But I think it would be logical for our government to try to limit these tragedies in the future.

The author thinks wrong.  There have been a million individual tragedies that are easily forgotten by their magnitude that were undertaken by free men (and sometimes conscripts) to preserve liberty, not to have it thrown away because some statist submissive grovels to beg for tyrants to enslave us all because he is a sniveling coward.

You want to protect people, do it yourself.  You want to prevent tragedies, do it yourself.  You want to tread on me because you’re a coward?  Then you become an oppressor, Mr. Grunwald, and you are trading bought-and-paid-for liberty for security that is not only fleeting, but wholly nonexistent.

We already sacrifice liberty all the time—our right to automatic weapons, our right to walk through airport security with our shoes on, our right to run our businesses however we please.

The writer is an amoebic poltroon who kneels before the might of the state.  We shouldn’t sacrafice our right to automatic weapons, our right to walk through airport security with shoes on, or our right to run our businesses however we please.  Excluding abuse of our rights, which infringes on someone else’s natural rights, it’s not the place of the government to do anything.  Just because the government has abused rights in the past, doesn’t mean we should tolerate it any further.

The rights of the next Martin Richard and the next Charlotte Bacon matter, too.

Yes, and the next Martin and the next Charlotte may be killed by leftists with utopian wishes who demand schools be gun-free zones, ensuring that only criminals and madmen intent on mayhem will be armed.  The next Martin and Charlotte, if they survived being left in a defenseless free-fire zone for 12 years of mandated government schooling, may not like being x-rayed by government lackeys who see them nude any time they get on a plane.  They may not like that when they go to start a business, that their government demands so much from them that it’s easier just to not start the business, that their freedom has been curtailed so much that they don’t have options for a business.

But they may grow up thinking they’re “pretty free”, because there’s always something worse.

The next Martin and the next Charlotte are not one or two children, they are millions of children who will grow into adults in a nation where they are less free.  The next boy may be bashed for being gay because he’s left disarmed against a mob, the next girl may be another Amanda Collins, who was raped because she was disarmed by government.  The next boy may have developed the motor that runs on static electricity, but will never make it because the government has regulated him into oblivion.  The next girl may not want to have her privacy violated by government every time she enters a private contract with an aircraft company to fly her somewhere.

-

There are no shortages of people demanding destruction of liberty.  From Cass “We Must Dominate You For Your Own Good” Sunstein, to any of the intellectuals Thomas Sowell criticizes as dominating sheperds who demand you be their sheep, there is never a shortage of men who wish to dominate and control their fellow man.

There is always a question of how many people believe that becoming sheep is noble, and how many reject that destructive notion of bondage.

From WSJ:

Every time Congress has taken a serious look at proposals to boost Internet sales taxes, it has rejected them. That’s probably why pro-tax Senators are trying to rush through an online tax hike with as little consideration as possible.

As early as Monday, the Senate will vote on a bill that was introduced only last Tuesday. The text of this legislation, which would fundamentally change interstate commerce, only became available on the Library of Congress website over the weekend. And you thought ObamaCare was jammed through Nancy Pelosi‘s Democratic House in a hurry.

You should always worry about measures that are rushed through, and you should always worry about taxes.  Time to call and email those senators again.

For Senators curious about what they’re voting on, it is the same flawed proposal that Mike Enzi (R., Wyo.) introduced in February. It has been repackaged to qualify for a Senate rule that allows Majority Leader Harry Reid to bypass committee debate and bring it straight to the floor.

Yup, rushing it through, no committee debate, no discussion, no time for input.

Mr. Enzi’s Marketplace Fairness Act discriminates against Internet-based businesses by imposing burdens that it does not apply to brick-and-mortar companies.

Almost every bill these days has an Orwellian name.  There is nothing “fair” about this act.

For the first time, online merchants would be forced to collect sales taxes for all of America’s estimated 9,600 state and local taxing authorities.

New Hampshire, for example, has no sales tax, but a Granite State Web merchant would be forced to collect and remit sales taxes to all the governments that do. Small online sellers will therefore have to comply with tax laws created by distant governments in which they have no representation, and in places where they consume no local services.

Meanwhile, New Hampshire’s brick-and-mortar retailers will bear no such burden. They will not be required to collect taxes on the many customers who drive across the Maine and Massachusetts borders to shop in New Hampshire. Bill sponsors say it would be too big a hassle to force traditional retailers to ask every walk-in customer where they live, but these Senators are happy to impose new obligations online.

What this does is it creates barriers to competition for the online marketplace.  It’s cronyism – the physical stores are having government be their thug enforcer.

Right now, internet companies have the advantage of reduced taxes, and they have a broad customer base, as they have access to any customer with internet access.  Brick-and-mortar stores have the advantage of specific taxes (no use tax), no shipping charges, and they allow customers to actually see what they’re buying before they purchase it.

Brick-and-mortar stores have the added cost of maintaining a store; but only suffer online disadvantages if they don’t expand their business online.  Some online businesses have already dominated certain markets, but with the viability of searches and search engines that will help the consumer seek out the best price, all they have to do is offer the best product at the lowest price.  That’s capitalism.

What the brick-and-mortar stores want now is to force their online competitors to suffer the myriad of regulations that exist throughout the nation.  Making a medium-sized online business (something like OpticsPlanet, for example) know every state, city, township, county, municipality and local district’s tax status might be possible, but it will drive their prices up as they hire lawyers.  Making a little business comply with the same regulations is an exercise in using government to destroy competition.

It’s noteworthy that Walmart and Amazon are supporting this bill.  While a lot of times I’m willing to voice support for Walmart, that’s when they recognize that their best interests and their customers’ interests coincide and follow their customers’ demands.

In general, that’s the case, because Walmart usually exemplifies free markets.  In this particular instance, however, Walmart has looked at its balance sheet and decided that it’s in its best interest to use government force to crush its competitors.  Walmart does provide a lot of good for its customers, but ultimately Walmart is only a creature as moral as the system it exists in.  When it recognizes the demands of customers and represents them, it does well and is as moral as its customers who drive it; when Walmart exploits the governmental system that lets it collude with the IRS to destroy competitors, it’s as villainous as the vampiric politicians who enable it.

Any Internet seller with more than $1 million in annual sales would be forced to serve all of the nation’s tax collectors.

Note that says “$1 million in annual sales”.  That doesn’t mean $1 million in profit.  A company could barely be breaking even after expenses and find itself destroyed by the taxation burden and regulations it now has to wade through.  The red tape would be monstrous.

This bill, and all federal bills like it also tax citizens in addition to state-based use taxes.  The citizen is already hit for taxes if they buy things out of state when they do their end-of-year state taxes (there’s often a “minimum use tax” whether or not you bought anything online), and now they’ll be hit for taxes from the business.  This is a federal bill to make you pay more taxes for products, taxes which most every state is already assessing you for.

This rush to tax is an attempt to overturn the Supreme Court’s 1992 decision in Quill v. North Dakota that forcing businesses to collect and remit taxes to jurisdictions where they have no physical presence was too big a burden.

Noteworthy from Quill v North Dakota:

In Quill Corp. v. North Dakota, the Supreme Court ruled that a business must have a physical presence in a state for that state to require it to collect sales taxes. However, the court explicitly stated that Congress can overrule the decision through legislation.

The power to tax is again the power to destroy.

The WSJ piece ends with this:

Some of our conservative friends are backing this Internet tax raid as a way to raise revenue to avoid more state income-tax increases. More likely the new revenues will merely fund larger government.

They aren’t conservatives.  They’re RINOs.  Raising taxes reduces the benefits for producers, and increases the demands on consumers.  People will make less money per unit, so they will make fewer units; people will pay more per unit, so they will buy fewer units.  Volume will decline, consumers will suffer, and all but the chosen winner businesses and the redistributor politicians will suffer.  “Revenues”, a polite way to say government taking from you (while giving you nothing that you need), will not be increased.  It will simply fund more pet projects of worthless “representatives” who will seek to bring home pork barrel projects to get themselves reelected.  This is Bastiat’s example of everyone plundering everyone.

If you want to steal from the people of the US in order to line your filthy thieving nest with taxes that destroy businesses, this is one way to do it.  If you’re a scum-sucking almost-obsolescent whip-and-buggy maker who wants to make sure no one can be more successful than you and that their businesses are destroyed so you can feast on their carcasses, this is a great tool to use government force to destroy their success because you’re too lazy to earn it yourself; all the while screwing over your customers because you’re too weak to make an honest buck.

It’s forcible redistribution, government finding the winners and crushing them at the behest of the losers and subsidizing the losers that harm the consumer.

And they call it “fairness”.

HARTFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork) — Connecticut state lawmakers came to an agreement Monday on what they said will become some of the nation’s toughest gun control laws.

Connecticut state lawmakers came to an agreement Monday on what they said will become some of the nations toughest laws that infringe on the right of the citizen, bragging that they’ve done more to squash the puny serfs than anyone this week, all through “agreement” between one ruling group and another ruling group on what they should do to the peon citizen.

As CBS 2′s Lou Young reported, the deal included a ban on high-capacity ammunition magazines, such as the one that was used in the Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre in Newtown. The deal also calls for a new registry for existing high-capacity magazines, and background checks that would apply to private gun sales.

One small step for a tyrant, one giant leap for tyranny!

Another registry would be set up for dangerous weapons offenders.

Y’know, we used to not put dangerous people on a list.  We used to put them in prison until they either learned and stopped being dangerous, or until they just stopped being.

Connecticut House Speaker Brendan Sharkey (D-Hamden) said he hopes the agreement sends a message to Washington, and the rest of the country.

“This is the way to get this job done; to do it in an effective, meaningful, thoughtful way, and to do it on a bipartisan basis, because our children deserve no less,” Sharkey said.

It sends a message that the Second Amendment shall be infringed, and sends a message that, on a bipartisan basis, between different stripes of tyrant, our children deserve to grow up in a society in which the state will dictate to them what they may do, and how they may do it, because the state knows best for the little people, who all need to be controlled, lorded over, supervised, and taken care of.

  • Same story, different take from the BBC:

Criminal background checks would now be required of all prospective gun purchasers. Currently, federal law exempts so-called private transactions, which can include online sales and sales at gun shows.

So-called “private transactions” between so-called “private citizens” who think they’re so-called “free men” whose lives shouldn’t be subject to “so-called” tyranny and control by government.

Where do you buy guns online?  Every online gun shop I see requires a transfer via FFL holder, as does every private seller on Gunbroker or Auction Arms.  The only exceptions are antiques.  Is there really a problem with blackpowder pistols being sold online?

In a compromise, legislators did not ban existing ammunition magazines of more than 10 rounds. Instead, already purchased high-capacity magazines will have to be registered.

In a compromise, citizens’ rights were only partially stripped, and rights that citizens thought they had will now have to be registered, though the state may be unsure of when they acquired these “rights”, so they may have to surrender them anyway, and they may not be able to pass these rights on to their children.  It’s a compromise in which you compromise your rights, and the state increases its power.  What a wonderful compromise!  Just the tip, baby.

Gun control advocates in Sacramento are putting a new twist on an old NRA slogan: “Guns don’t kill people — bullets kill people.”

Democratic lawmakers are pushing like never before to regulate or tax ammunition sales. They say the logic is simple: A firearm is nothing but an expensive paperweight without ammunition.

And a printing press is nothing without ink, and a computer is nothing without electricity.  Goodbye, Bill of Rights, hello tyranny!

“It’s a way to red-tape the right to bear arms to death,” said Chuck Michel, the California Rifle and Pistol Association’s attorney, promising to sue if any such bills pass. “It’s all part of a campaign of shame, the fight to make it as difficult as possible for law-abiding citizens to make the choice to have a firearm for self-defense.”

As lawmakers mull how to curb gun violence in the wake of December’s massacre of school children in Newtown, Conn., some note that California and federal laws also forbid those who aren’t allowed to own firearms from owning ammunition — but there’s no way to tell who’s buying it.

Skinner’s bill would require all ammo dealers to be licensed and all ammo buyers to provide identification information that would go to a state registry. The registry could then be compared with a state database of people prohibited from owning guns and ammo because of crimes, mental health issues or other reasons. It also would tip police to massive purchases.

Because a RIGHT means begging the state for a license.

Another bill, SB53 by state Sen. Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, would require a background check and an estimated $50 fee for a one-year permit to buy ammunition.

Because a RIGHT means begging the state for a license.

10 percent tax on ammunition to fund crime prevention — might merge with another lawmaker’s proposed nickel-per-round tax to fund mental-health screening for children. Bonta, D-Oakland, said his tax is mostly about generating money to “combat the gun violence in our communities,” but could have the “secondary benefit” of stemming “rampant sales.”

These are a couple boxes of .22s, with Indiana Jones and a horse for scale:

1100 rounds

That’s 1100 rounds.  In the beforetimes, back before the panic, that would run you about $20/box, so $40 total (a few years prior, before QE and metals prices spikes and Obama, they’d be $10/box).  With a nickel tax per round, you’d be looking at a $27.50 tax per box.  So even at recent prices, the price would go from $20/box to $47.50/box.

That $40 couple of boxes there would be $95.  And that’s before local sales taxes.

The power to tax is the power to destroy.

- Chief Justice John Marshall

Shall not be infringed means shall not be infringed.  Except to the ruling class, to whom it means, “license, regulate, tax, eliminate, shut up, destroy, destroy, EXTERMINATE!”:

AB 48 by Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley — Would require ammunition sellers to be licensed; ammunition purchasers to show identification; ammunition sellers to report all sales to the state Justice Department, which would create a registry of ammunition purchases. First hearing: April 2.
AB 187 by Assemblyman Rob Bonta, D-Oakland — Would impose a 10 percent tax on all ammunition sold in the state, with the revenue directed to a fund for crime-prevention efforts in the state’s high-crime areas. No hearing date set.
AB 760 by Assemblyman Roger Dickinson, D-Sacramento — Would impose a 5-cent tax on each bullet sold in California, dedicating the revenue to an existing program to screen young children for mild to moderate mental illness — and intervene with strategies to address their problems. First hearing: April 15.
SB 53 by state Sen. Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles — Would require anyone buying ammunition to first pass a background check and receive a one-year permit, for an estimated $50 fee, from the state Justice Department. First hearing: April 16.

And in Congress, because the Second Amendment can’t be infringed enough at the state level:

S.35, the Stop Online Ammunition Sales Act of 2013, by Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J. — Would require face-to-face purchases of ammunition, require licensing of ammunition dealers and reporting of bulk purchases of ammunition. A companion bill in the House, HR142, is sponsored by Rep. Carolyn McCarthy, D-N.Y.
S.174, the Ammunition Background Check Act of 2013, by Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn. — Would require an instant background check for the purchase of ammunition and would restore pre-1986 requirements that sellers track their inventory and keep records of their customers. Purchases of 1,000 rounds or more, or thefts of large amounts of ammunition, would have to be reported to law enforcement.

They really hate online ammo sales, but let’s revisit that, shall we?

In regular old economics, we’re talking about the government establishing a barrier to entry for you as a citizen in order to stop you from exercising your rights.

Last month, New York Democrat Rep. Carolyn Maloney introduced the “Firearm Risk Protection Act” that would impose a $10,000 penalty on any gun owner who fails to purchase mandatory liability insurance.

And Erika Johnson gets it:

The bill would require gun buyers to provide proof of insurance from a company approved by a state insurance regulatory authority for “losses resulting from use of the firearm while it is owned by the purchaser.” In a nutshell, you need to take out a preemptive policy for any violence you might inflict with your firearm — which doesn’t really make sense, because the people inflicting non-defensive gun violence are criminals anyway. This is just another poorly disguised legislative attempt to deter gun ownership, and man, talk about regressive! Looks like self-defense is only for people who can afford to take out an extra insurance policy.

The oh-so-esteemed bureaucrats at the United Nations have been looking to slap some regulations on the small arms trade via an international treaty for quite some time, but the United States has never really cottoned on to that idea. The Senate has to ratify all treaties by a two-thirds majority, and in one of the amendment votes to their budget just last month, the Senate voted 53-46 to specifically prevent the U.S. from signing on to the U.N.’s proposed Arms Trade Treaty.

The Obama administration don’t care. The president expressed a willingness to get behind such a thing near the start of his tenure, conspicuously backing off as last November’s election approached but then jumping right back on the progressive globalist bandwagon.

The Senate, however, has vowed to block ratification, which requires a two-thirds majority and is needed for the treaty to be legally binding on the U.S.

Good.  TX Senator Ted Cruz tweeted this:

UN Arms Treaty should be rejected outright by US Senate. It is international gun regulation, plain and simple & it must never be ratified

Allowing magazines that carry 10 or more bullets to remain in the hands of gun owners would leave a gaping loophole in the law, said Mark Barden, whose 7-year-old son, Daniel, was killed in the shooting.

“It doesn’t prevent someone from going out of the state to purchase them and then bring them back. There’s no way to track when they were purchased, so they can say, ‘I had this before,’” Barden said. “So it’s a big loophole.”

This is where things get unpleasant.  It’s very difficult to explain to someone who’s still in the throes of grief that the rights that we as American citizens have recognized by our Constitution are in fact natural rights, and also rights that are inherently necessary to protect ourselves as individuals and as a group from tyranny small and large.  It’s very difficult to explain to someone that their son shouldn’t have been murdered because the mental health system, which has stigmatized mental health so severely, has made it so people who need help or who should simply be locked away can get help or can be secured far from normal society.

It’s very difficult to break past that wall and explain to people that the very real fears of government tyranny are very real fears – because governments invariably end up becoming tyrannical unless they’re kept in check.  It’s very difficult to penetrate that wall of grief and explain that restricting the rights of American citizens, infringing on their natural rights of self-defense, giving the state more power over their lives, and ultimately putting flawed men who are in government charge of those of us citizens will never bring his son back.

It will never bring his son back, and it will never prevent the Bath School Disaster, or the World Trade Center bombing in 93, the Oklahoma City bombing in 95 – but it will cause the Amanda Collins of the world to be raped again.  It will enable government use of force against a disarmed citizenry.  It will enable police brutality and governmental corruption.  It will lead to a nation where there are the Rulers and the Ruled.

It may not do it tomorrow, and it may not do it in idyllic Connecticut, but it will.  History is very harsh, and history is right.  History shows us what will happen, and history shows that the only place where governmental tyranny has been stymied is in nations where the people retain the individual power to resist oppression.

Sadly, it’s a very big picture and someone grieving for a lost child is unlikely to look at the big picture and wonder if they are not asking for something that not only would have not, could have not, and cannot save their lost child, but that will ultimately make the world a more dangerous, repressive, destructive place where hundreds, thousands, or millions of children might die because of his requests.

Then again, Darrell Scott, father of Columbine victim Rachel Scott, knew that there is an even bigger picture than the worldly knowledge of history, and looked to address it in a different way:

Men and women are three-part beings. We all consist of body, soul, and spirit. When we refuse to acknowledge a third part of our make-up, we create a void that allows evil, prejudice, and hatred to rush in and reek havoc.

“Spiritual presences were present within our educational systems for most of our nation’s history. Many of our major colleges began as theological seminaries. This is a historical fact.

“What has happened to us as a nation? We have refused to honor God, and in so doing, we open the doors to hatred and violence.

“And when something as terrible as Columbine’s tragedy occurs — politicians immediately look for a scapegoat such as the NRA. They immediately seek to pass more restrictive laws that contribute to erode away our personal and private liberties.

“We do not need more restrictive laws. Eric and Dylan would not have been stopped by metal detectors. No amount of gun laws can stop someone who spends months planning this type of massacre. The real villain lies within our own hearts.

“We do not need more religion. We do not need more gaudy television evangelists spewing out verbal religious garbage. We do not need more million dollar church buildings built while people with basic needs are being ignored.

“We do need a change of heart and a humble acknowledgement that this nation was founded on the principle of simple trust in God!

“As my son Craig lay under that table in the school library and saw his two friends murdered before his very eyes–He did not hesitate to pray in school. I defy any law or politician to deny him that right!

“I challenge every young person in America , and around the world, to realize that on April 20, 1999 , at Columbine High School prayer was brought back to our schools. Do not let the many prayers offered by those students be in vain.

From Michael Walsh at PJ Media:

That’s New York City’s nasty little fascist mayor, the ersatz and erstwhile “Republican” who used the party to sneak into Gracie Mansion in the wake of the Giuliani administration’s successful war on street crime, and then double-crossed the GOP in his bald-faced but successful attempt to subvert term limits, lecturing David Gregory in his Boston honk that he knows what’s best for New Yorkers — and us.

Yes, it’s the Soda Jerk himself, tossing his pint-sized weight around as he attempts to remain politically viable after his reign as the successor to such corrupt and incompetent wretches as Jimmy Walker, William O’Dwyer, Abe Beame and David Dinkins mercifully comes to an end. Let’s unpack a little of what the Terror of Tinytown had to say.

We’re not banning anything.  All we’re saying is, we want to show you just how big the cup is. If you want 32 ounces, take two cups to your seat. If you want 64, carry four. But our hope is, if you only take one, you won’t go back.

If you believe that, Bloomberg has a bridge to Brooklyn to sell you. And to which the only proper response — the one that until New York turned into a city of Upper West Side conformist sheep he would have justly received — is (to quote Kurt Schlichter) “bite me.”

It’s a good post, worth reading, though he had to go back and update it to make note of Bloomberg’s new $12,000,000 anti-gun ad campaign, all for your own good.

It’s a campaign against individual autonomy and the freedom to live your life – all for your own good.