Archive for the ‘Regulation’ Category

Didn’t expect to do another Obamacare post so fast, but I just found out my car insurance went up.  I’m with a very major insurance company, and in the many, many years I’ve been with them, they aren’t the type to raise rates arbitrarily.  I called up and asked why my rates went up about $50.

The answer I got was that in my state, the company has assessed the new costs of Obamacare and started raising rates to compensate for those increased costs that Obamacare is causing.  The increased health care costs as a result of Obamacare are now raising car insurance rates because those same car insurance companies also end up paying medical bills for those injured in car accidents.

So watch your statements, call and ask.

Somewhere in that red tape tower, your rates just went up.  Broken windows.

red tape tower obamacare

Obamacare started as a 2700 pages and a fat binder of rules and regulations.  It is now over 20000 pages of rules and regulations.

A couple weeks ago, Senator Mitch McConnell’s office sent a few pictures of the 7’3″ tower of red tape that that is Obamacare out onto the internet.

By contrast, the Constitution:

pocket constitution

It’s not just Beretta that sees there’s always a problem with Maryland.  Maryland’s new anti-firearm bills are pushing Beretta towards leaving, and now LWRC is looking at the door as well.

For those unaware of LWRC, they make a lot of AR15s and AR15 parts.   Maryland SB 281 is an anti-modern firearm bill.

lwrc m6a2

Today, on LWRC’s Facebook page, they address Maryland’s new attempts at banning their products in testimony in opposition to SB 281:

Facing these 20 gun bills, he (LWRC owner Richard Bernstein) is now put in a position to abandon his home, many of his MD employees and his proud legacy to move his ventures to a state that does not ask that productive member of society fall on a sword as a scapegoat for inaction by its government against the prosecution of criminals for gun crimes. There is also apparent malaise by the government to addressing serious mental health care deficits in MD and an apparent disregard of its citizen’s Constitutional rights under the second amendment.

To understand the consequences of passing this legislation, you must know what is at stake. LWRCI’s rate of job creation over the past 7 months has been approximately 10 new jobs per month. We have expanded the business through three MD counties with employees numbering 300. Then there are the employees of businesses we subcontract to, like Eastern Plating in Baltimore County. We do so much work with Eastern Plating; LWRCI has a resident employee in house.

LWRCI will bring in excess of $130 million dollars into Maryland this year.

We already work in the most highly regulated industry in America. There are more than 20,000 domestic laws relating to firearms. As a company we are diligent to follow them to the letter of the law. Yet the Maryland Legislature, whom have already passed some of most extensive state firearms regulations in the union are attempting to pass further non-sensical laws that will do nothing to improve public safety.

Instead, these laws punish law-abiding citizens, and strip them of their rights. This law will push firearms into the black market to felons and criminals on to the streets as it did in Canada, the UK and Australia. Law-abiding citizens are faced with deciding whether to comply with an unconstitutional law or be labeled felons. Once passed, citizens with no legal method of disposing of these firearms will invariably create a black market with off the books sales with no checks, balances or regulations. Maryland seems doomed to repeat mistakes of the past while ignoring the core issues.

I came here to share this information on behalf of many Marylanders. We are asking ourselves a question everyday. Is it intent of this legislation to cause a mass exodus of law abiding citizens and productive companies? These citizens and companies will be forced to leave either on moral grounds, business grounds or both. These are the same people that are the core of civic responsibility and contribution to our community and state and its economy. How can LWRCI stay in MD and produce rifles, pay taxes, create jobs, and stimulate the economy when its government intends to restrict the rights of its own citizens? Aside from the moral issue, the citizens of this country would not forgive the hypocrisy of LWRCI staying despite passage of this legislation.

The legislation as written seems to be window dressing for political gain by a few in the face of ineffective crime control. The real issues of public safety as they relate to gun violence go largely unanswered. The MD government is making it clear through its actions with this legislation that we, nor Beretta nor other firearms manufacturers are welcome in MD. It sends the message that this is not the State to expand in.

This legislation also sends a clear message to MD citizens that wish to exercise their rights under the second amendment of the U.S. Constitution; that they are no longer welcome in MD. For criminals, it will be business as usual. As such, if this unconstitutional ban passes as written, we will comply with your wishes and move our companies out of Maryland along with as many employees and their families that wish to go.

Respectfully,

Darren Mellors
Executive-Vice President
LWRC International, LLC

LWRC addressed some conflict in the RKBA circles, but doesn’t look to be expecting much from their legislature:

 Focus your anger and outrage on those that want to take your rights away under the auspices of public safety for political gain when they now they are not addressing public safety at all. Wish we (sic) luck tomorrow testifying to a den of snakes who pretend to serve the people when all they are doing is serving themselves.

Update: Maryland’s Senate just passed another anti-gun bill today.

beretta logo small

From the Washington Post:

On the production floor of Beretta USA sits a hulking new barrel-making machine ready to churn out the next object of obsession in America’s love-hate relationship with guns: a civilian version of a machine gun designed for special operations forces and popularized in the video game Call of Duty.  …

But under an assault-weapons ban that advanced late last week in the Maryland General Assembly, experts say the gun would be illegal in the state where it is produced.

Now Beretta is weighing whether the rifle line, and perhaps the company itself, should stay in a place increasingly hostile toward its products. Its iconic 9mm pistol — carried by every U.S. soldier and scores of police departments — would also be banned with its high capacity, 13-bullet magazine.

“Why expand in a place where the people who built the gun couldn’t buy it?” said Jeffrey Reh, general counsel for Beretta.

Beretta is finally coming around to seeing that government contracts aren’t all there is in the business, and they can only get so many legislators to make them so many loopholes as a “state-approved” company for so long.

13 rounds isn’t high-capacity, it’s standard capacity; and the vast majority of them have 15 round magazines.  That was one of the selling points that helped it replace the 1911.

Among other restrictions, O’Malley’s bill would ban assault rifles, magazines with more than 10 bullets and any new guns with two or more “military-like” features. Gun experts said it’s a near-certainty that Beretta’s semiautomatic version of the ARX-160, now only a prototype, would be banned under O’Malley’s bill.

“I’m concerned. I think they’re going to move,” said Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. (D-Calvert). “They sell guns across the world and in every state in the union — to places a lot more friendly to the company than this state.”

Citizen sales are no small part of their production – and there are plenty of regions of the country that are friendly to both business and guns.

“We literally are part of the arsenal of democracy,” said Reh, sweeping his hand toward the production floor, where on a recent afternoon more than 1,000 of the military version of the pistol sat in various stages of assembly. “That’s why we consider this so insulting.”

They’re starting to get it.

Of course, they can feel insulted all they want.  To the left, they are ultimately evil unless totally state controlled.  That they provide pistols for thousands of law enforcement officers, hundreds of thousands of US troops, and hundreds of thousands of citizens is meaningless to people who want to destroy the gun business because guns are bad.

The assault-weapons ban isn’t the only part of the governor’s bill Beretta dislikes.

In Maryland, gun manufacturers are required to register as firearms dealers, which some say could expose the company to lawsuits for selling and shipping weapons as dealers do. The Senate Judiciary Committee, which passed the governor’s bill 7 to 4 late Thursday, spelled out an exemption for Beretta and a handful of other smaller manufacturers in the state.

O’Malley aides say the bill could have outright banned manufacturing of assault weapons in the state but did not in part because of Beretta, which has agreed to meet with the administration on Monday to discuss the bill.

“We think getting assault weapons off the streets and keeping this company can both be accomplished,” said Raquel Guillory, O’Malley’s spokeswoman.

No, they can’t.  And a $2000 modern rifle isn’t on “the streets” unless Obama’s ATF is giving it to Mexican narcoterrorist cartels.  Those $2000 modern rifles end up in the hands of sport shooters, 3-gun shooters, collectors, Second Amendment advocates, hobbyists, and the kinds of folks who don’t do anything with them but shoot paper; and won’t ever do anything with those rifles unless government targets their owners for liquidation.

beretta arx 160

Another “weapon of the future” that fires a cartridge designed in the early 1960s that is so small that many states (KS, VA, etc.) don’t let you hunt deer with it because it’s considered too weak to reliably take an animal humanely. But somehow politicians want to ban it for being superpowered.  All the black plastic must make it more dangerous.

Beretta should know that this whole thing stinks of cronyism, which isn’t something an Old World company would be unfamiliar with at all.  They may get favors now, but they won’t in the future.  As they note in the story, there are lawsuits that don’t necessarily exempt Beretta.  Long a tactic of the anti-rights forces, the left wants to be able to sue manufacturers for making products that only hurt people when misused criminally.  They want to sue for liability when criminals use guns as a method to destroy gun companies.  It’s what they do.

Beretta may get a niche carved out for it here in legislation because of the jobs it provides, but Beretta will also be looking at the fact that loophole they’re in will be tightened gradually.  They are the frog, and Maryland is going to boil them.  To the left, arms only belong in the hands of the state and leftist terrorists like Bill Ayers.  There is no place in their world for weapons.  Theirs is an impossible utopia of gun free zones where women use whistles and ball-point pens to fend off attackers because they hate guns so much they would rather women be raped than defend themselves.

Del. Joseph F. Vallario Jr. (D-Prince George’s), whose district encompasses the Accokeek plant, said he would do everything he could for the company.

“We want to keep those jobs,” said Vallario, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, which has a key role in approving the legislation.

He cares nothing for the company.  He cares about the job losses.  If he cared about the company, he’d oppose infringements on the right to keep and bear arms.  If Beretta turned to nothing but a state-owned, state-run, state-controlled entity that makes weapons solely for the jack-booted thugs of the state, he wouldn’t care.  That they are still nominally a free company with the ability to leave means he wants them to not take their jobs out of state – and decimate the supply chain that supports them when they move.

The company’s Italian patriarch, Ugo Gussalli Beretta, visited the plant shortly after O’Malley introduced his gun-control bill, and the two discussed the issue. But Reh declined to say if the two reached any decisions about what would happen if the governor’s bill passes.

“All I can tell you is, Mr. Beretta said, ‘There always seems to be a problem with Maryland.’ ”

Beretta probably isn’t moving.  Italian gun regulations have gotten worse in many ways in the last few years, and Beretta is already used to dealing with governments that are slightly more despotic than Maryland.  It would be nice to see them get sick of it and move, though.  Their company would benefit from a regulatory climate that isn’t ideologically out for their blood, they’d probably benefit from a better tax structure, and they could avoid a legal climate that’s also out for their blood.

Magpul will move.  That’s a sign in the industry that things are serious.  If Beretta moves, that’s a paradigm shift in the industry.  Their competitors won’t sit and wait for the noose to tighten or to play cronyism games with politicians who will stab them in the back, and there will be an exodus of firearms jobs out of their historical homes in the industrial northeast.

Update: HotAir has a little more on this today.

From Outdoors Native:

KATY, TX – The gun control debate may be a bit out of control in Katy.

CNN’s Piers Morgan chose Tactical Firearms, a Katy gun shop and shooting range as the backdrop for Monday’s episode of “Piers Morgan Tonight”. Included in the Monday’s debate were Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, State Senator Dan Patrick and Ted Nugent.

Tactical Firearms owner, Jeremy Alcede claims Morgan told him he wanted to use the time at the gun shop as a learning exercise.

Alcede said, “He said, well, I’d like to learn more about guns.  People criticize me, saying, how can I be against guns if I don’t know anything about guns?”

Sounds good so far.

“The points that I did make were just garbled to the point that people were asking  why was I speaking in broken sentences, and I said, look back at the video and you’ll see, in one instance I’m wearing glasses, one I’m not.  One hearing protection, one not.  They just chopped it up so bad it wasn’t even funny.”

Was it a cheap shot?

“They completely misrepresented what I wanted to get across, completely.”

First off, this wasn’t really a surprise.  Invite a propagandist into your place and you reap what you sow.

Second, this is Tactical Firearms in Katy, TX, that we’re talking about.  These are the same worthless appeasers of gun grabbers that wanted online ammo sales banned because it would be a wonderful barrier to entry so they could screw their customers by using government’s gun against their competitors.

All this as President Obama is pushing his gun control agenda. We’re guessing he won’t be welcome in Katy.

Tactical Firearms isn’t welcome in the gun world, the worthless quisling Zumbos.

Host Matt Patrick: I also love what you were saying about the Stop Online Ammuntion Sales Act which is being presented by the democrats now.  You say, look if this is going to make them happy, then let’s give them this, let’s let them have this, and go away and leave us alone, right?

Tactical Firearms Owner Jeremy Alcede: Right.  I mean, they’re never going to stop.  This is just an ongoing thing that, y’know, I don’t agree with anything – y’know, you give an inch, they’ll take a mile.  Y’know if this is going to shut them up, then give it to them.  The only good thing that can come out of this is y’know, it’s gonna not allow all these big online companies to purchase ammo from the manufacturers so the manufacturers are going to be overloaded with ammo so guess what that means?  They’re going be calling me and saying “look, I’m going to give you an extra dollar fifty off a box of ammo please buy it, please buy it, so it might actually lower the cost for you the consumer.  I know if I get it lower, I’m going to sell it lower to you.

Maybe if you’d listened to the people who would’ve been your customers instead of sending “Cowboy” out to mace them, you might’ve recovered.  But I guess not.

From the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

A store calling itself Fearless Distributing opened early last year on an out-of-the-way street in Milwaukee’s Riverwest neighborhood, offering designer clothes, athletic shoes, jewelry and drug paraphernalia.

Those working behind the counter, however, weren’t interested in selling anything.

They were undercover agents from the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives running a storefront sting aimed at busting criminal operations in the city by purchasing drugs and guns from felons.

But the effort to date has not snared any major dealers or taken down a gang. Instead, it resulted in a string of mistakes and failures, including an ATF military-style machine gun landing on the streets of Milwaukee and the agency having $35,000 in merchandise stolen from its store, a Journal Sentinel investigation has found.

The ATF set up a fake distributing company to sell guns and do a “sting”.  Yet somehow, all they managed to do was FUBAR everything.  This should come as no surprise.

When the 10-month operation was shut down after the burglary, agents and Milwaukee police officers who participated in the sting cleared out the store but left behind a sensitive document that listed names, vehicles and phone numbers of undercover agents.

And the agency remains locked in a battle with the building’s owner, who says he is owed about $15,000 because of utility bills, holes in the walls, broken doors and damage from an overflowing toilet.

The sting resulted in charges being filed against about 30 people, most for low-level drug sales and gun possession counts. But agents had the wrong person in at least three cases. In one, they charged a man who was in prison – as a result of an earlier ATF case – at the time agents said he was selling drugs to them.

And it gets even worse:

Residents of the area, tucked between N. Humboldt Blvd. and the Milwaukee River, are angry the ATF secretly drew drug dealers and gun-toting felons to their neighborhood, which is rallying to improve.

The ATF was out there again creating crimes and ruining neighborhoods.

In Milwaukee, agents located Fearless Distributing in a neighborhood where aggravated assaults had been declining since at least 2008, according to an analysis by the Journal Sentinel relying on Milwaukee Police Department numbers.

Aggravated assaults within a mile radius of the storefront dropped to 109 last year from 193 in 2008. Homicides in the area ranged from zero to three per year during the last five years, far fewer than other crime-laden areas in the city.

And then it gets worse from there:

In September, an agent parked his Ford Explorer at the Alterra on N. Humboldt Blvd., about a half mile away, with three ATF guns stored in a metal box in the back.

About 3 p.m. Sept. 13, an Alterra employee spotted three men breaking into the Explorer. They stole three guns: a Smith & Wesson 9mm handgun, a Sig Sauer .40-caliber pistol and an M-4 .223-caliber fully automatic rifle. They also made off with ammunition and an ATF radio, according to a police report.

Yup, the ATF put an actual assault rifle – as in select fire, fully automatic M4 – on the streets, in a neighborhood that was improving until they got there.

One of the suspects hid the machine gun under a bed and took the handguns with him. He was questioned by police and refused to talk. He was released. No one has been charged in the burglary of the ATF guns, according to Milwaukee County Assistant District Attorney Karen Loebel. She declined to say if charges would be coming.

The ATF soon had one of its stolen guns back, however.

The very next day, according to court documents, 19-year-old Marquise Jones contacted agents at Fearless Distributing and sold the Sig Sauer – and another unrelated handgun – back to agents.

The price: $1,400.

But Jones would not be arrested for two months. And when he was, it was not for the theft. His name does not appear on the police reports related to the vehicle break-in. He was charged with having a stolen gun.

Meanwhile, the hunt for the machine gun and the other stolen handgun continues.

Yup, the ATF’s full-auto M4 is still out there, and they’re paying double price to get their own guns back.  Clearly, though, we need to crack down on US citizens rights.  Only the cops should have guns… and the criminals they give guns to.

Mike Hashimoto at the Dallas Morning News asks “Is it a good idea to give the ATF even more to do?”  Mike, you seem like a very good guy, but check your premise really quick and ask “Is it a good idea to have an ATF at all?

The ATF has always been an agency full of jack-booted thugs.  Remember the racist ATF “Good Ol’ Boys Roundup” that ran for decades?

GoodO'BoysRoundup nigger checkpoint atf

This is the same agency that on their good days ruled shoe strings are machineguns and that Chore Boy pads are NFA firearms.  They also throw parties when they get rules passed that infringe on citizens’ rights.

Why not just Boot the ATF entirely?

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Update: Not really an update, more of a post-script, but I figured I’d be remiss if I didn’t note there are a few good ATF agents.  John Dodson, Vince Celafu, and other whistleblowers are good guys.  I’ve met an ATF agent or two who are good people, though they’re usually on the licensing side of the house rather than the legal decision/enforcement side.  The institution itself is set up to tax and control things that aren’t illegal (and two of which are specifically named in the Constitution’s amendments), and that contributes to a corporate culture that is every bit as prone to tyrannical action as a “free speech bureau” that exists to control, regulate, and deny speech would be.

An excellent article by David Kopel.

This Article reviews the British gun control program that precipitated the American Revolution: the 1774 import ban on firearms and gunpowder; the 1774-75 confiscations of firearms and gunpowder; and the use of violence to effectuate the confiscations. It was these events that changed a situation of political tension into a shooting war. Each of these British abuses provides insights into the scope of the modern Second Amendment.

Furious at the December 1773 Boston Tea Party, Parliament in 1774 passed the Coercive Acts. The particular provisions of the Coercive Acts were offensive to Americans, but it was the possibility that the British might deploy the army to enforce them that primed many colonists for armed resistance. The Patriots of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, resolved: “That in the event of Great Britain attempting to force unjust laws upon us by the strength of arms, our cause we leave to heaven and our rifles.” A South Carolina newspaper essay, reprinted in Virginia, urged that any law that had to be enforced by the military was necessarily illegitimate.

The Royal Governor of Massachusetts, General Thomas Gage, had forbidden town meetings from taking place more than once a year. When he dispatched the Redcoats to break up an illegal town meeting in Salem, 3000 armed Americans appeared in response, and the British retreated. Gage’s aide John Andrews explained that everyone in the area aged 16 years or older owned a gun and plenty of gunpowder.

Military rule would be difficult to impose on an armed populace. Gage had only 2,000 troops in Boston. There were thousands of armed men in Boston alone, and more in the surrounding area. One response to the problem was to deprive the Americans of gunpowder.

Two days after Lord Dartmouth dispatched his disarmament recommendation, King George III and his ministers blocked importation of arms and ammunition to America. Read literally, the order merely required a permit to export arms or ammunition from Great Britain to America. In practice, no permits were granted.

Similar to the threats of ammunition taxes, restrictions, shipping bans, etc., that are going on today.  Same gun control plans, same tyrannical objectives.

The British government was not, in a purely formal sense, attempting to abolish the Americans’ common law right of self-defense. Yet in practice, that was precisely what the British were attempting. First, by disarming the Americans, the British were attempting to make the practical exercise of the right of personal self-defense much more difficult. Second, and more fundamentally, the Americans made no distinction between self-defense against a lone criminal or against a criminal government. To the Americans, and to their British Whig ancestors, the right of self-defense necessarily implied the right of armed self-defense against tyranny.

At Lexington and Concord, forcible disarmament had not worked out for the British. So back in Boston, Gage set out to disarm the Bostonians a different way.

On April 23, 1775, Gage offered the Bostonians the opportunity to leave town if they surrendered their arms. The Boston Selectmen voted to accept the offer, and within days, 2,674 guns were deposited, one gun for every two adult male Bostonians.

Gage thought that many Bostonians still had guns, and he refused to allow the Bostonians to leave.

Someone disarming you who doesn’t honor their word?  Naw, never happened before!

Contrast Massachusetts as a defender of liberty in the 1700s in the whole article (which I recommend reading) with anti-rights, pro-control Massachusetts of today.

To the Americans of the Revolution and the Founding Era, the theory of some late-20th Century courts that the Second Amendment is a “collective right” and not an “individual right” might have seemed incomprehensible. The Americans owned guns individually, in their homes. They owned guns collectively, in their town armories and powder houses. They would not allow the British to confiscate their individual arms, nor their collective arms; and when the British tried to do both, the Revolution began. The Americans used their individual arms and their collective arms to fight against the confiscation of any arms. Americans fought to provide themselves a government that would never perpetrate the abuses that had provoked the Revolution.

minuteman statue concord

A few other points are missed here.  If you buy online, you not only have to provide your credit card info that matches your mailing address, but most, if not all, online stores also require a state-issued form of ID.

This is actually more than 1000 rounds of ammo.  It’s 1100 rounds (measured by weight, so give or take), with Lego Indiana Jones, a horse, and shag carpeting for size comparison (and I have the Legos as far back from the front of the box so with camera tricks it looks as “big” as possible…until you remember how little a Lego is or look down at the carpet):

1100 rounds

And people want to make that “an arsenal”?

Why need 1100 rounds?  Buying in bulk, like the video mentioned, saves money.  If I were to buy 11 boxes of 50 rounds, I’d be paying a lot more for packaging and individual costs, retailer markup due to the retailer having to deal with 11 pieces of inventory instead of 1, and so on.  Why need 1100 rounds?  If you go plinking for a day with a .22, you can easily burn through all that ammo in an afternoon.

Why need 1100 rounds of centerfire ammo?  Same reason.

I’ve mentioned much of this before, but I’ll also address something else the video said about there being no tracking on ammo at stores.  To the leftist, this doesn’t mean “oh, online ammo is okay”, it means “store sold ammo is evil”.  They want that banned, too.

Criminals will always violate the law.  Criminals will always find people with clean records (straw purchasers) to make gun or ammo buys for them.  The ATF and FBI have even enabled illegal straw purchases of guns and ammunition in order to support Mexican narcoterrorist cartels so the ATF could blame American gun owners for Mexican crime.

Tracking gun and ammo sales, imposing high taxes, cutting off ammo supplies to rural areas by banning ammo sales – all of these are tools to deny people their rights.  Imagine that if, in order to buy a computer or a printer, your purchase was tracked, higher taxes were imposed, and buying a computer online was made illegal.  This would make buying a computer and printer and being able to exercise your First Amendment rights that much harder to do.  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.

All it really does is make it harder for the person of limited means to afford to exercise their Second Amendment rights.  It makes them more dependent on government, rather than less.  It hurts folks in rural areas a lot, as they’re cut off or subjected to gouging local monopolies.  It stymies American gun culture through regulation – which is the leftist/progressive point, all of which enables tyranny – at the individual level oppressed by criminals or madmen, and at the national level oppressed by government and madmen.

From Yahoo News:

Gwendolyn Crump, director of the Office of Communications for the Washington Metropolitan Police Department, told ABC News, “NBC contacted MPD inquiring if they could utilize a high capacity magazine for their segment. NBC was informed that possession of a high capacity magazine is not permissible and their request was denied. This matter is currently being investigated.”

But ABC News has learned from an official at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives that NBC had reached out to the federal agency on Friday for advice before displaying the weaponry.

According to the ATF official, the agency noted that ATF doesn’t enforce D.C. gun laws, but agreed to put the question to a couple of Washington police officers who’ve worked with the agency in the past.

The D.C. officers advised the ATF spokesman that Gregory could display the magazine, provided it was empty, the source said.

This is one of those times when it’s useful to note that cops aren’t lawyers.  Police have a bevy of regulations, rules, laws and ordinances to enforce, and have to have a breadth of knowledge across the whole of their enforceable jurisdiction that often results in thin spots at the periphery.  In short, the cops don’t always know every law.   Here, the DC police who responded to NBC from the department and said no were correct.  Those DC officers who responded to the ATF’s query were incorrect.  The statute is quite clear:

(b) No person in the District shall possess, sell, or transfer any large capacity ammunition feeding device regardless of whether the device is attached to a firearm. For the purposes of this subsection, the term “large capacity ammunition feeding device” means a magazine, belt, drum, feed strip, or similar device that has a capacity of, or that can be readily restored or converted to accept, more than 10 rounds of ammunition. The term “large capacity ammunition feeding device” shall not include an attached tubular device designed to accept, and capable of operating only with, .22 caliber rimfire ammunition.

And as ATF noted, they don’t enforce DC gun laws.  They don’t have to be aware of them all.

That turned out to be bad advice, as conservative media and gun rights activists were first to note. The ATF official describes this as a “misunderstanding,” and says he hopes DC police will not bring charges.

“Misunderstandings” for the little guy mean they get chained to a bed for months.

Maybe the ATF has learned from the murders of Brian Terry, Jaime Zapata, and now Susana Flores Maria Gamez, that they really should lie low for a while.  Any discussion about gun control that involves the ATF will end up bringing up the ATF’s smuggling of thousands of weapons to Mexico’s narcoterrorist cartels, which isn’t going to help those wanting to eliminate citizens’ rights really make any points other than that government force can’t be trusted.  And of course, there’s still the ongoing investigation and lawsuits to push for disclosure of some 70,000 documents that the ATF and DOJ have been stonewalling on since they started abetting murdering Mexicans and federal agents.

This is another one of those things that happens when you deal with too many regulations and too many agencies.  What is legal according to one can be illegal according to another.  Businesses that deal with city, county, state, and federal rules on commerce run into this all the time.  Firearms owners in states without preemption laws at some level often have to deal with patchwork laws as well, and have to be very aware of the minefield they constantly weave.

To start off, the First Amendment is under attack as well as the Second.  From Bunch Blog:

All of these video games, do they really need to be so violent? is the question that will come next. Studies show that video games lead to murder! ideologues will shout. Why are we teaching our kids to kill? Don’t believe me?

axelrod video game tweet 121216My point? Just this: Gamers should be extremely, extremely wary about the liberal impulse to “do something” in the wake of a tragedy. Guns aren’t going anywhere. Video games about war marketed to easily impressed teens and young adults (the demographic that tends to commit mass murder)? Well, they’re slightly less secure.

Keep in mind the people who wanted to ban music the most in the 1990s were Democrats led by Tipper Gore; and those who went after video games included then-Democrat Joe Lieberman (now an independent due to totally unrelated factors).

Quentin Tarantino’s new movie Django Unchained, which is a dose of the old ultra-violence, struck me as strange over the weekend.  Listening to CNN and FOX on XM radio, almost every commercial break from the Connecticut mass murder was an ad for a movie… about mass murder.  Is it justified in context of the film?  Haven’t seen it.  But it brings up some questions, which Tarantino has addressed by having the premier cancelled, but otherwise just saying:

Speaking in New York Quentin Tarantino said: “I just think you know there’s violence in the world, tragedies happen, blame the playmakers. It’s a western. Give me a break.”

The Oscar-nominated director of Inglourious Basterds and the Palme d’Or winning Pulp Fiction, said blame for violence should remain squarely with the perpetrators.

The only people responsible for crimes and violence are those who commit them.  Millions of people every day who are also immersed in popular culture don’t go out and commit murders.

Reason Magazine has a couple of good pieces today on how gun control doesn’t work – the first about how mass shootings aren’t really on the uptick:

those who study mass shootings say they are not becoming more common.

“There is no pattern, there is no increase,” says criminologist James Allen Fox of Boston’s Northeastern University, who has been studying the subject since the 1980s, spurred by a rash of mass shootings in post offices.

The random mass shootings that get the most media attention are the rarest, Fox says. Most people who die of bullet wounds knew the identity of their killer….

Grant Duwe, a criminologist with the Minnesota Department of Corrections who has written a history of mass murders in America, said that while mass shootings rose between the 1960s and the 1990s, they actually dropped in the 2000s. And mass killings actually reached their peak in 1929, according to his data. He estimates that there were 32 in the 1980s, 42 in the 1990s and 26 in the first decade of the century.

Another Reason piece highlights the Magical Thinking of Gun Controllers, summed up easily in their last sentence:

The notion that restrictions like these can have a noticeable impact, let alone that they can “end” or “stop” occasional outbursts of senseless violence, is hard to credit unless you believe what Obama insists he does not: that evil can be legislated out of the world by acts of Congress.

And finally, from the Atlantic, a piece that notes that we’ve already had the debate on gun control.  And gun control lost to gun rights:

There isn’t anything wrong with gun-control advocates lamenting what, by their lights, is a public that’s reaching wrongheaded conclusions on the subject and is trending in the wrong direction.

But too many pieces I’ve read make a mockery of robust debate in a pluralistic society by ignoring the fact that current policy is largely (though not entirely) a reflection of the U.S. public disagreeing with gun reformers. The average American is far more likely than the average journalist or academic to identify with gun culture, to insist that the Second Amendment confers an individual right to bear arms, to exercise that right, and to support various state concealed-carry laws.

Opponents of gun control have been widely vilified in the past week. Very few attempts have been made to understand what motivates them — and given that they’re a subset of Americans with little representation in the national media, attempts at understanding would likely do a lot to inform the rest of the American public. For the most part, these people aren’t in fact motivated by selfishness, as so many critics have stated or implied in the last few days, and almost without exception, gun-control opponents are as horrified by the events in Newtown as anyone calling for a new assault-weapons ban or better background checks or a ban on ammunition.

The point isn’t whether they’re being treated fairly or not. It’s that a gun debate can only be productive in a country as pro-gun as this one when the folks on either side at least understand the deeply held disagreements at issue. So far, too many newly vocal reformers are operating under the conceit that if only America “finally” had a conversation about gun violence, everyone would immediately see the wisdom of the position reformers have advocated all along.

It’s an interesting piece in that it recognizes that journolists and reporters are widely in opposition to the actual citizenry.  It’s somewhat screwed up in that it assumes there’s a debate to have between the wrong (gun grabbers who ultimately support tyranny, whether knowing or unknowing) and right (citizens’ rights advocates).  There are a few restrictions (violent felons, mentally ill, etc.) that are important, but beyond those very, rare few who are incapable of being responsible citizens, shall not be infringed means what it says.

Many people need to understand how rights work:

A HUMAN RIGHT.