Saturday, April 2, 2011

Mike Vanderboegh on the Bradys

Using his trademark exaggeration as an excuse to get on the soap box, Mike Vanderboegh claimed the Christian Science Monitor's tribute to Jim and Sarah Brady was akin to hagiography. He used such words as "pimps" and "deifies" to describe what I thought was nothing more than a fitting acknowledgment of their efforts on the 30th anniversary of the shooting.

But, once up on that soap box, he let us have his usual incendiary rhetoric.

"Okay. . . If you try to take our firearms we will kill you."  
Our God-given, natural and inalienable rights are not subject to modification by law or negotiation. Do not extrapolate from your own cowardice and believe that if you are lucky enough to game a corrupt political system and get what you want legislatively, that we, like you, would not resist federal tyranny. We will fight, even though it means our deaths. This is an alien concept to most collectivists but it is nonetheless true. Pass another law -- any law -- that further restricts our free access to arms and you'll have a civil war on your hands in short order. You would have to stack up millions of our bodies to achieve your stated purpose and we would not go quietly without making that trade more than a one-to-one ratio.
I'm beginning to understand what Zorroy sees in this guy. He does have a way with words. Take the sentence right in the middle of the paragraph. "Pass another law -- any law -- that further restricts our free access to arms and you'll have a civil war on your hands in short order."  I didn't want to take it out of context, but do you think the context changes anything about it? I don't see any qualifiers or disclaimers, do you? So, we can take that literally then?

These obviously exaggerated bouts of ranting wouldn't be so bad except he has a huge audience, 600 readers and over 5,000 visitors a day, average. How many in his audience do you think recognize the pomposity and the preposterous nature of that statement? How many realize that there have been such laws and there continue to be, yet there has been no civil war, nor is there likely to be?

And, talking about exaggerations, what did you think about those "millions of our bodies" which he's predicting will be sacrificed fighting against tyranny?  Is that a great example of grandiose victimism, or what?

What's your opinion?  Do you agree with Zorroy that Mike V. is extremely eloquent?  Do you agree with me that he says some extremely crazy things?

What's your opinion?  Please leave a comment.

Tyler Heinze Back in the News

You remember the well-spoken young man who supported his older brother Guy when Guy was arrested on the preposterous charge that he bludgeoned eight family members to death. Guy is still awaiting trial, I'm not sure how that speedy trial business works. Maybe in Georgia that's not one of the Amendments they concern themselves with.
He faces two felony counts of possession of a weapon on school property.
What's your opinion? Are two knives and pepper spray something to really worry about?

Please leave a comment.

Florida 13-Year-Old Felon

An Indian Trails middle-schooler accused of bringing a gun onto school property has been charged with two felonies, a Flagler County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman said.

Travis Williams, 13, of Palm Coast was serving a school suspension when a .40-caliber gun was found stashed in his book bag "in the woodline" behind the school, sheriff's spokeswoman Debra Johnson said in a written statement.

The teen is charged with possession of a concealed weapon on a school campus and possession of a concealed weapon.
And here's the clincher.
The boy's mother could not be reached for comment.
In Florida, they don't even consider charging the parents. That's wrong. That's just another way of giving irresponsible gun owners all the help they need to continue being irresponsible.

What do you think? Please leave a comment.

Orlando, Florida 1 Dead 1 Wounded

The gun rights folks keep saying that allowing guns in bars is OK. Gun control voices say it's not. What do you think?

Another part of the pro-gun argument is that these incidents have nothing to do with gun availability or drinking and guns but only about bad people doing bad things. We say it's more complicated than that.

Florida Today reports.

According to Demings, the manager of the bar called 911 after being stabbed several times by a man after the bar was closed.

As deputies were investigating the incident, the man who stabbed the manager shot Shapiro, Demings said. Deputies returned fire, shooting and killing the man, who has only been identified as a 31-year-old man, Demings said.

"This is a day when it looks like the good guys won," Demings said. "It's not OK to shoot a deputy. The warning here is that If you shoot a deputy or any law enforcement officer, it's likely that you're going to get shot."
What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Definition of Gun Control

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Understanding Economics

For me, understanding Paul Krugman can sometimes be a bit difficult. I don't have an economics degree and he's a Nobel Prize winner in Economics. It makes sense. Of course our friend Mr. G Guy isn't deterred by any considerations like that. Nevertheless, I'd suggest that anyone who has difficulty with Krugman just wait till Rachel puts it all together. This is clarity itself.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

More on John Lott's Scholarship

Last week, we reported that John Lott, a former University of Chicago visiting assistant professor and conservative media pundit, wrongly accused Media Matters of misquoting him. In fact, after we accurately quoted a post Lott had written, Lott's post mysteriously changed, making it appear we had misquoted him, when we had not.

The switch was picked up by Paul Krugman at The New York Times, who wrote:

So, it appears that Lott retroactively tried to put his original statement down the memory hole, then accused a critic of wronging him by quoting what he originally said. Now, that's scholarship!
What's your opinion? Isn't this enough to write the guy off? Wouldn't intelligent and honest gun rights folks break ties with someone like this?

What do you think? Please leave a comment.

Friday, April 1, 2011


From the perpetually brilliant and talented Steve Sack of the Minneapolis Star Tribune:

An Avid Gamer

A toy gun made to look like a .45 caliber handgun was found in the car. “The subject did not realize that he pointed the gun at an officer and told the officer he was an avid gamer and had always wondered what it would be like to point a gun at a real person and pull the trigger,” Asmus said. He was charged with unlawful exhibit/display of a weapon.
This one reminds me of the skeet and target shooters. Like video games, it's all about killing other people. Fortunately only a certain percentage of people lack the maturity and mental health to draw the line, but that percentage is much too large. All you have to do is scan the gun blogs on the internet to see what I mean.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

When Seconds Count ...

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The NRA Visits Harvard

I wondered if the article were satire.

The talk, which attracted about 100 people, was part of the NRA University program that tours college campuses to educate students about the second amendment.
A whole hundred! Isn't that a riot? How many people are there on any given day, including students, professors and college employees?

Those who study and teach at Harvard are among the most intelligent people in the country.  Do you think that could account for the paltry turnout?

What's your opinion?  Please leave a comment.

Women's Rights in Indiana

Indiana, that bastion of American freedom and individual rights as well as home to one of our favorite girl-gun-bloggers, has really gone too far now.

What's your opinion? Is that disgraceful and pathetic, or what?

Please leave a comment.

Dove Hunting in Iowa

The Times Republican reports.
Finally, the General Assembly has enacted legislation, encouraged by the NRA and others, to save us from the vicious mourning dove. Since 1918 it has been illegal to hunt this gentle creature, but no more, it is now needed for target practice. What is next? Cardinals and goldfinches? Governor Branstad has signed the bill into law - call him at 515-281-5211 to voice your displeasure with this new law.
What could be more telling than actually shooting guns at the very symbol of peace?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Sabre Defense Indictments

As we've discussed before, Sabre Defense Industries of Nashville, Tennessee is part of the problem.

Affidavits attached to search warrants for a Tennessee company show that illegally trafficked assault rifles and gun parts connected to the company were found in Middle Eastern countries, including Jordan and the United Arab Emirates.

Federal court documents unsealed Wednesday related to Sabre Defence Industries, fill in the picture of an alleged conspiracy to skirt U.S. regulators and law enforcement to gain an advantage in the international arms industry.

Four local Sabre executives charged in a 21-count federal indictment are scheduled to change their not guilty pleas Monday, The Tennessean reported.

The alleged fraud included British owner and CEO Guy Savage and Nashville officials using "phoney shipping documents" and invoices from "fairy land," sending gun parts overseas under false bottoms in shipping containers and stamping silencers illegally imported from Finland as if they were manufactured in Nashville, according to the affidavits.

By 2007, Sabre officials were going as far as calling silencers "lawn mower mufflers" and rifle barrels "gear shafts" in their effort to fly under the radar of regulators.
What's your opinion? Are we spending too much time and focus on the individual gun owners who are irresponsible and dangerous rather than the major sources of the problem? Wouldn't it make more sense if gun control efforts targeted disreputable gun manufacturers and crooked FFL guys? Or is it all the same problem?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

South Carolina Gun Laws

from Think Progress
A proposed law making its way through the South Carolina legislature would loosen gun ownership to an astonishing level. If passed, legal gun owners could bring their weapons to restaurants, day-care centers, and churches. The bill’s sponsor, state Rep. Thad Viers (R), says that expanding the places that one can carry a concealed weapon in the state is an effective anti-crime measure:
It puts criminals on the defense,” said state Rep. Thad Viers, R-Horry, a co-sponsor of the bill and the owner of about 25 firearms and a concealed weapons permit. “Criminals don’t know if you’re carrying or not.”
Amazingly, the only debate in the legislature appears to be whether the bill goes far enough.
What's your opinion? Is it any wonder "South Carolina has the ninth-highest rate of firearm murders by state."
What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Slingshot Man

I offer this to all those who liked the anvil guy.

The Migration of the [Gun] Loon

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Mario Oliveira - Wounded Cop

I don't think getting shot makes someone a hero, but the determination to live and the strength to recover certainly do.

"I could feel blood oozing out of me from different points of my body. I was actually waiting to see the light or take my last breath. When that didn't happen I got mad and tried to tell myself to control the breathing to try to minimize the blood flow."
He goes on to say how this trauma has helped him put things in perspective, to, as he put it, "change his view" about the importance of family compared to work.

I couldn't help wondering how he feels about lax gun laws, which, even in his home state, contribute towards gun violence.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Police Shooting in Kent, Washington

What do you think happened? How about this?

1. The guy was a 63-year-old Open Carry protester. The cops were unprepared for someone like him, being in their twenties and inexperienced in dealing with gun rights extremists. At the first movement they blew him away and naturally claimed he'd aimed the gun at them.

2. The guy was depressed because of the ecomony and maybe his wife just left him. Knowing the cops would be called, he went for a walk with his shotgun in hand. When the cops approached he shouldered the weapon.

Tucson Shootout - 2 Dead

The Arizona Daily Star reports.

Two men died following a shooting on the south side Tuesday morning that police said stemmed from a dispute among several people.

Two groups of people had a conflict with each other and met in the apartment complex parking lot, where they began to fight, Ronstadt said. The fight escalated into a shooting.

At least one of the people involved in the shooting lived in a mobile home in the 1600 block of West Ajo Way, he said.

When police officers went to the home they found drug-related evidence there, he said.
Let's see, mobile home, drugs, guns and Arizona, all the elements of disaster.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Situational Awareness, Tactical Readiness and Home Invasion Preparedness

There are bigger gun blogs out there, but the greatest concentration of fantasy dwellers I've seen is over at Farago's place.  He calls them the "Armed Intelligentsia," I kid you not.

Helmke on the Bradys

via The Huffington Post

President Bill Clinton once summed up the public service of Jim and Sarah Brady this way: "If it hadn't been for them, we would not have passed the Brady Law, and then the ban on assault weapons, and on cop-killer bullets...How many people are alive today because of Jim and Sarah Brady? How many? Countless."

How many people, indeed? From how many cities and towns and counties across our country? From how many races, religions, economic backgrounds and circumstances?

Since it's impossible to prove what never happened, we'll never know how many lives have been saved because of the contributions of Jim and Sarah Brady. It's part of their legacy, and ours, not to be able to count the vast numbers of Americans who are living out their lives and hopes and dreams because of Jim and Sarah's leadership in the movement to prevent gun violence.

The Supreme Court, So Beloved of the Gun Culture

via Norwegianity, there's this about Justice Clarance Thomas and his buddies.

It’s wrong to call Justice Clarence Thomas an Uncle Tom. For starters, only African Americans have a right to make such an accusation, but more importantly, Clarence Thomas is more properly known as an Uncle Clarence.

An Uncle Clarence is someone who gets a lot of help getting from nowhere to somewhere, and then pulls the ladder up after himself lest someone else on the bottom accidentally get ahead. An Uncle Clarence ignores the racial nature of the USA’s prison and death row populations, and makes it easier to execute the innocent. And, when a man wrongfully put on death row escapes by virtue of his complete innocence, an Uncle Clarence will tell him that the prosecutors were just doing their job when they withheld exculpatory evidence that kept an innocent man on death row for fourteen years.

And yes, there are five [5] Uncle Clarences on this Supreme Court, each and every one of whom should be impeached and removed if only for this one decision.

More from Jeralyn Merritt.
What's your opinion? Has conservatism poisoned even the highest court of the land? Is nothing safe or sacred from its corrupting effect?

Watching the Supreme Court that makes decisions like this could lead one to question some of their other 5-4 decisions, don't you think?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

The NRA Reacts to the Mikeb302000Blog

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Schumer Really Wants Gun Registration, Oh My

Winston Dorian put together a very well-written post about why he doesn't like the new legislation proposed by Senator Charles Schumer of New York.

Schumer’s “fix” bypasses the question of gun shows altogether. In fact, the term “gun show” appears nowhere in his bill. S. 436 proposes that virtually all private transfers, regardless of location, be subject to National Instant Criminal Background Check System checks. The exceptions would be extremely narrow; in many cases, even lending someone a firearm would be subject to federal regulation.

Near-universal NICS checks for firearms transfers, if coupled with allowing the FBI to retain records on approved firearm-related NICS checks, as proposed by the Brady Campaign, would achieve near-universal federal firearm transfer registration. That, in turn, would move gun control supporters one step closer to their goal of registering all firearms and firearm owners.
I don't know if the Senator is denying that we'd like to see licensing and registration, but I certainly don't. The way I see it, that's the only way to put an end to straw purchasing. That's the best way to constrain gun owners to be responsible for the guns they own, which they seem to have a hard time doing now.

What's your opinion?  Please leave a comment.

Fixing Our Gun Check System

I emphasize that this is about reducing ILLEGAL guns, and preventing illegal gun owners.  I hope that readers will consider signing this petition.  Fix our gun check system; fix it NOW.  We will all be safer.
“Enacting this legislation will help prevent other families from experiencing the terrible loss that we have suffered.”
That’s what Ross Zimmerman, father of Rep. Giffords’ slain staff member, Gabe Zimmerman, said at the Fix Gun Checks rally yesterday in Tucson, AZ. This was the first time that victims of the January 8 mass shooting stood with civic leaders to call for a specific change to our nation’s guns laws.

It was a truly powerful event as families and civic leaders came together to call for critical gun reforms. Speakers at the rally included Dr. Peter Rhee, Chief of Trauma at UMC and the attending surgeon who treated Rep. Giffords, victims Randy Gardner and James Fuller, and Patricia Maisch, who stopped the deranged killer from reloading.

Watch the video from the Tucson Rally and share it with your friends and family.

Our National Drive to Fix Gun Checks began one month after the tragedy in Tucson, and since then our team has traveled from coast to coast, raising awareness of the 34 Americans murdered with guns every day and building support for the Fix Gun Checks Act of 2011.

Each stop on the tour has moved us closer to our goal of fixing the broken background check system. But the Tucson rally was a deeply personal and important milestone for everyone involved.

Now, as the Fix Gun Checks truck heads back east, we’re counting on supporters like you to build on this momentum and keep the pressure on Congress to take action.

See highlights from the Tucson Rally to Fix Gun Checks and share the video today.

Thank you for standing with the Tucson community and supporting their efforts to stop these senseless shootings.

Mayors Against Illegal Guns

P.S. -- You can follow the National Drive to Fix Gun Checks on Facebook or Twitter.

Buying Guns in the Classifieds

Deseret News reports

Questions about the ad category came up as reporters from KSL's sister company, Deseret News, were interviewing sources for a story on guns in Utah. Some alleged that the wildly successful site is not only a marketplace for legitimate gun owners to buy and sell handguns, but that it has potential to be a haven for those seeking to get around legal restrictions. Several sellers also said they only sell unregistered guns, since they don't want potential problems to come back against them.

State and federal laws prohibit the sale of handguns to minors or felons, but while licensed gun dealers must verify age and run a background check, no such requirement exists for private gun sales like those advertised on KSL Classifieds. It would also be difficult to police a law banning the sale of a gun to someone who lives in a different state.

There's no evidence any laws have been broken by buyers and sellers who find each other through, but that it could happen is troubling, Atkinson said.
That famous pro-gun excuse about there being no evidence when something is obvious is not going to work much longer. Honest people admit, not only that the possibility is troubling, but that it does happen. The only question is does it happen enough that we want to stop it. Obviously the answer is "yes."

I wouldn't be surprised if these media people are reading the writing on the wall and seeing that background checks on all gun sales is coming as a national policy, are making the appropriate changes now.

What do you think? Please leave a comment.

In Arizona - Iraq Vet Could Not Adjust

In the Great State of Arizona, the former crown holder as Most Baneful State, a young and troubled army veteran is legally allowed to carry a concealed gun.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Toy Guns in New Zealand

An interesting approach, to say the least.

Teacher Louise Samuels says teachers decided to contain the gun play, making sure the youngsters understood the implications of gun use.

"What I noticed in my other workplace, when we banned it, was that the children would hide and shoot you – they get sneaky about it. The play would turn quite negative,” she tells The Dominion Post.

"We teach them you don't leave [guns] lying on the floor, you don't shoot people, you make sure you ask to borrow someone else's gun."

The guns are made by the children out of cardboard or paper and must be stored in a gun rack between play sessions.
It doesn't make much sense to me to teach kids that guns are OK as long as they don't shoot other kids with them and as long as they ask permission before taking someone else's. The purpose of guns is to shoot people. Why do so many gun extremists make such an effort to deny that?

Guns are bad news for kids and to teach them other than that is bad news for everybody.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Toy Guns in the News

At around 7:45 a.m. Thursday, Lewiston Police received a report of an individual wearing camouflage clothing with firearms near three schools.

Police said the subject was reported to have pointed a handgun at a vehicle. All public schools in the area were notified and went into a "soft" lock-down.

Officers found a 13-year-old autistic male. He admitted he had been playing with his toy guns. It was determined that there was no real threat and the schools resumed normal activity.

A scare at Blake High School today turned into a lesson for students and parents.

A school resource officer got a tip that a student arriving on a bus may have a weapon.

The officer and school administrators met the bus when it arrived at the school.

The student in question was found with only a toy gun on him.

School officials say even though it was a false alarm, they are praising the student who reported the tip and reminding students not to bring those items to school.

A SILLY prank has seen a Tacoma man arrested after staff at a Tuggerah store thought they were about to be robbed, sparking a full-scale police operation which included calling in a helicopter.

The man, 33, went to Westfield Shopping Centre, Tuggerah at 10am on Saturday to buy a costume for a dress up party.

He purchased a full face balaclava and a toy gun before going to JB Hi-Fi and buying a television.

When the man went to the loading dock to pick up his new television police said he thought it would be funny to wear the balaclava and carry the gun.

However, staff didn’t feel the same and called security and police with officers from Tuggerah Lakes sending the police helicopter as well as attending the scene amid fears of an armed hold-up.

The man was arrested and has been interviewed by police.
What's your opinion? Judging by what's reaching the main stream in just a single day, this is a bigger problem than previously thought.  I have all the wonderful memories and nostalgic recollections as any other man my age of playing cowboys and indians and cops and robbers, but look what's happening.

Toy guns have got to go.  Ban them says I.

Please leave a comment.

Why Florida Wears the Crown

The only thing they didn't connect it to in the video is the lax-gun-law situation in Florida. The governor's shenanigans and the prescription drug problem are far worse than I thought the other day when The Sunshine State took the crown from Arizona by unanimous vote. This, of course, make the availability of guns all the worse.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Civilian Casualties in The Wars

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The Punisher Gun

Who wouldn't want one of these babies - you know, for home protection?

Shoot Skeet, Not on Streets!

From reading Mike's blog, my attention and awareness of shootings in my own area, state, region and country has increased. Thank you Mike for focusing that awareness of gun violence, since we share an antipathy for illegal guns and for illegal firearm violence to our fellow humans.  (I'm not too keen on any violence to our fellow human beings, but I recognize that some of it is both legal and necessary.)

Minneapolis, MN (there are other cities with the name Minneapolis) is not a particularly violent metro area, and our crime rates are actually going down in many categories here........ so it has somewhat shocked me to see multiple shootings in the same day, often within an hour or two.  I don't know if before I simply wasn't paying attention well enough, or if this is marking some turn around in those declining crime stats.  But I do like posting these here, because I hope it will get more than the superficial, quickly forgotten, barely perceived level of attention as a public issue.  That's why I post these.  In these specific instances, I posted them because our streets are OUR streets, our public places.  We deserve for them to be safe, not something out of a Hollywood (as opposed to historically accurate) cowboy shoot-em-up movie where they are a location for gun fights.

From the STrib:
One person was shot late Monday in Minneapolis' Camden neighborhood, police said.
Just after 11 p.m., police and an ambulance were called to the scene at 39th and Fremont Avenues N. No other details, including the condition of the victim and whether suspects were identified or arrested, were available.
A Metro Transit bus driver reported hearing possible shots at 11:05 p.m. The shooting occurred on the street, not on a bus, police said.
It was the second shooting reported in Minneapolis in the space of several hours.
and, also from the STrib:
A woman was shot to death and a man was wounded Monday night in south Minneapolis, police said. The woman's death marked the city's fourth homicide of 2011.
A car bearing the victims arrived at Abbott Northwestern Hospital minutes after police received reports of gunshots in the 3400 block of Park Avenue S. about 8 p.m., said police spokesman Sgt. William Palmer. The woman was declared dead in the emergency room, he said. .
Palmer, speaking at the perimeter of a block-long cordoned-off area, said that homicide investigators and canine handlers were on the scene and that details so far were sparse.
 "We're not really sure what the circumstances were," he said, adding that it appeared that the victims were shot on the street.

Shameful Disregarding of the 1st Amendment

One of our Anonymous commenters who's been sparring with Dog Gone came up with a real beauty.

And in a most excellent use of the First amendment to browbeat leftists into irrelevancy and out of education.....

The Quakertown Community School Board has agreed to look into allegations made by a parent that a high school teacher is using his classroom to promote his political viewpoints and express disrespect for Christianity and the tea party.

Glenn Rickabaugh, a tea party member from Milford Township, read part of a 1,000-word letter at Thursday's board meeting, in which he claimed the teacher wore a T-shirt with the words "Jesus was a liberal" and used a sexually derogatory phrase when referring to the tea party.

Rickabaugh, who has a child in the high school, also said the teacher espoused beliefs that the Second Amendment has no place in contemporary society and that socialized medicine is better for Americans.
Wouldn't that be more like a shameful disregarding of the 1st Amendment in order "to browbeat leftists into irrelevancy and out of education?"

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

The Most Extreme Gun Legislation

Already the bellwether of radical policy, the Arizona legislature is now poised to outdo other GOP-led states in the competition for most extreme gun legislation. Yesterday, a House panel approved a bill to let anybody bring their guns into “public establishments” and “public events.”

They may have the "most extreme gun legislation," but Florida still has the Crown.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Florida Takes Crown from Arizona

After much deliberation the Mikeb302000 judges have decided to award the State of Florida with the crown.

Most Baneful State of the Union

It was a terribly difficult decision. Arizona seemed to be in the lead. But three factors contributed to the final outcome.

1. The governor
Before inexplicably becoming the governor of the state of Florida, Republican Rick Scott's most notable accomplishment was pulling off a major health care scam, defrauding taxpayers, and narrowly avoiding a criminal indictment.
2. The gun laws
Mayors Against Illegal Guns released a report this week that maps the influence of states with lax gun control laws on violence in states that have stronger gun control laws. Pro-gun advocates have frequently made the argument that gun control laws don’t work because states with tough gun control laws don’t have less violent crime than states with weaker laws. The problem with that argument was that state lines don’t work like some magical barrier and it is easy for someone living in a state with tough laws to drive to a neighboring state that has weaker laws, buy guns and come back home to commit the crime.
3. The prescription drugs
The nation's top 25 oxycodone-dispensing doctors were all in Florida in the first half of 2008; 18 of them were in Broward County, according to a Broward County state attorney grand-jury report. In South Florida overall, there were 176 pill mills, up from 66 just 14 months before. This has contributed to tourism — pill-shopping trips to the Sunshine State from Tennessee and Kentucky, where authorities have cracked down hard on similar clinics, seem to be as common as Disney vacations nowadays. In the parking lot of the Broward Pain Clinic, there are just as many license plates from Ohio, Tennessee and Kentucky as there are from Florida.

4. Frequent Police Shootings

The shiny object in question was likely a fist-sized batch of crack cocaine wrapped in aluminum foil, according to a final report released Thursday. And Marin was justified in using lethal force, Miami-Dade prosecutors concluded in the first detailed account of the first of seven controversial fatal shootings in seven months in Miami.

It was decided that although Arizona makes a good showing in the first two categories, only Florida has this deadly and volitile combination. And not unlike the radioactive lava leaking out of a Fukushima reactor, this deadly trifecta of corruption and death, poisons all it touches, reaching far beyond the borders of the Sunshine State.

What's your opinion? Do you agree with the decision of the MikeB judges?

 Please leave a comment.

Negligent Discharge - No Charges

link kindly provided by our commenter Willis. I think we talked about this one when it happened but I couldn't find it.

What's your opinion? Is it really possible that no charges have been brought? The gun owner feels bad, I guess that's something.

Would you agree that this is a case for the MikeB is King Rule formerly known as the one-strike-you're-out law?

Please leave a comment.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Details on the Schaeffer Cox Case

from the Alaska Dispatch
Two confidential sources on the payroll of the FBI helped the government make its case against Fairbanks-area militia members who are accused of stockpiling illegal weapons and plotting to kill judges, Alaska State Troopers and others, according to information in federal court records unsealed Friday.

Neither source knew the other one was working with investigators, but both began assisting in the investigation last June, according to affidavits filed with the court in order to obtain search warrants earlier this month.
You can read the rest at the link provided above, including commentary and predictions by Gryphen.

The Stolen Valor Act - Overturned

A man’s lie about being awarded the Medal of Honor is protected by the 1st Amendment, the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals concludes.

Xavier Alvarez

Nothing in this decision undermines laws against fraud. Misrepresentation for financial gain is not protected speech any more than a deceptive advertisement is. But when the purpose of a lie is ego gratification, the proper response is scorn, not a jail sentence.
What's your opinion, agree or disagree?

Please leave a comment.

Jim Wright on Republicans

via Rants from the Rookery from Stonekettle Station.

What I really wanted to ask is this: Proud American? Really? What is it exactly that you’re proud of? You say you love your country? You say you love the United States? Really? Which part? What is it that you love about it? Specifically, what exactly do you love about America?

Because, see, so far as I can tell, people like you seem to hate just about everything that makes the United States what it is.
This is a wonderful post. What do you think?

Please leave a comment.

Another John Lott Op-ed on the President's Editorial

Fox News gives John Lott a pulpit.

After repeating the same unconvincing arguments about Obama's true feelings about gun control, there was some new material here about background checks.
Instead, the Brady Act background checks for gun purchases, in place since 1994, are a problem for law-abiding citizens. Hardly ever do background checks deny guns to criminals. Over 99.9 percent of purchases initially flagged as being illegal under the law were “false positives” – law-abiding citizens incorrectly identified as banned individuals.

Take the numbers for 2008, the latest year with data available. The 78,906 initial denials resulted in only 147 cases involving banned individuals trying to purchase guns being referred to prosecutors. Of those 147 cases, prosecutors thought the evidence was strong enough to prosecute only 105, and they won convictions in just 43. But few of these 43 cases involved career criminals or those who posed real threats. The typical case was someone who had a misdemeanor conviction for an offense he didn't realize prevented him from buying a gun. 
Of course, I find his citations a bit suspect.  But the real problem is he doesn't mention the tens of thousands of disqualified people who DO NOT attempt to buy a gun legally in 2008.  These guys either used straw purchasers, bought from private sellers or other criminals or did without.

This is the real proof that background checks work, but it takes common sense and honesty to recognize it.

What's your opinion?  Please leave a comment.

San Joaquin Shooting - 2 Dead 1 Wounded

San Joaquin County Sheriff's officials say a 34-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of fatally shooting two people and wounding a third at homes around Lodi before leading deputies on a chase.

Howard Smith was arrested on Friday. Sheriff's officials say he went to two homes in the unincorporated community of Acampo around 4:30 p.m. and opened fire, killing two people and injuring a third. The victims' names have not been released, but Smith apparently knew them.
You see, there's often no mention of whether he'd been a lawful gun owner or even a concealed-carry permit holder. The pro-gun crowd likes to pretend that all this violence is done by "criminals." The fact is, some of these incidents are being done by up-until-then law-abiding gun owners. It's called crossing over to the wild side.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

N.J. Go-Go Bar Shooting - 1 Dead 4 Wounded

Authorities in northern New Jersey say a Newark man was killed in a shooting outside an Irvington go-go bar that left four other men wounded.

Katherine Carter, a spokeswoman for the Essex County Prosecutor's Office, said Shihaab Loyal, 29, was shot about 4:30 p.m. Friday and died a short time later. But further details on the shooting were not disclosed Saturday, including how many times Loyal was shot and what type of weapon his assailant used.

Carter said the four other victims were being treated for wounds that were not considered life-threatening, but she did not disclose their identities.
What makes anyone think that allowing guns in bars would improve situations like this?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Non-Fatal Shooting Accidents

via Laci

The first full face transplant
was done in Spain to repair shooting damage.

The 31-year-old thanked his donor's family and the medics that gave him a new face in March at Vall d'Hebron University Hospital, Barcelona.

A shooting accident meant his entire facial skin and muscles - including nose and lips - needed replacing.
Doctors say he can expect to regain up to 90% of his facial functions.
Gun rights advocates often dismiss the number of gun accidents as negligible.  In order to justify this, they usually talk about accidental deaths only. But, many of those who experience non-fatal wounds are left terribly scarred, in some cases paralyzed.

I don't think it's fair to write these off as insignificant.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Spring Fever Shootings?

That is as good as any other explanation for it.
From the Star Tribune:
A man was shot twice in the leg Sunday afternoon outside a south Minneapolis gas station and convenience store, the second shooting in the city in less than an hour.
The shooting took place just after 1 p.m. outside the Crosstown Gas and Convenience store at 34th Avenue S. and E. 57th St. The man was treated by paramedics at the scene and taken to Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis by ambulance. His injuries were not life-threatening, police said.
The shooter and victim knew each, said Sgt. Bill Palmer. Both men walked into the store and were arguing, said store owner Cal Abdul. They went outside by a gas pump in the parking lot, where one of the men pulled out a gun and shot the other in the leg, said Abdul. The shooter fled the scene on foot, he said.

About an hour early at 12:15 p.m., another man was shot in the leg near Chicago Avenue S. and Franklin Avenue E. and driven, either by himself or companions, to Hennepin County Medical Center. His injury also is not life-threatening.
The man was standing outside when he was shot, said Palmer. He wasn't cooperating with police, so they don't if he knew the shooter.
The two shootings were unrelated.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

The United States' Popularity

As a fairly outspoken critic of the president lately, based mainly on the three wars and Guantanamo, I really enjoyed this article. Perhaps, my personal disappointment over his failure to keep certain of his promises had blinded me to the big picture.

Respondents in 100 countries were surveying and the United States was the most popular world power at 47%. This is a roughly 14% increase in America’s global standing since the Bush administration.
What's your opinion? Is there something to these popularity figures? Are they indicative of the kind of trend they suggest?

Please leave a comment.

Another Academy Award Nominee

I guess the right word to describe this performance is disingenuous, but phony-baloney comes to mind too.  You remember our last nominee.


lacking in frankness, candor, or sincerity; falsely or hypocritically ingenuous; insincere.


1. nonsense; baloney.
2. nonsensical; foolish.

3 Dead in Utah Murder - Suicide

Different from the typical murder-suicide story which destroys families, this one sounds like it involves people who had fallen on tough times. Almost always we hear about anger and rage, about jealousy and obsession, but here's a case in which the argument could be made that it was their right to do it, that it was their business.

I would still argue that the two murders preceding the suicide would be suspect, but I get the point.

Police suspect that the father shot his wife and son, then shot himself. A note was also found, but investigators did not say what was written in the note or who may have written it.

"I know them personally," said Stephanie Weeks, a janitor at the center. "They're a loving family, very supportive of each other."

While neighbors and investigators were asking why, Weeks could only guess about a motive.

"The son's health was declining. He was handicapped. The wife's health was declining and they just lost their home. It's so sad," she said. "Something had to have happened in the last 24 to 48 hours."
What's your opinion? Even in cases like this, isn't it possibly a momentary and passing insanity that leads up to the shooting? In that case, gun availability plays a deadly role, just like in all gun violence. Don't you think?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Gun Culture - Mississippi Style

 The AP reports

An argument between two armed neighbors over a dog and its feces escalated to a shootout in rural Mississippi, sending one neighbor to the hospital with injuries from shotgun pellets and the other neighbor to jail.
What's your opinion? Is this another one of those rare anomalies? Is the percentage of gun owners who can be represented by these guys so small that we can ignore it?

Please leave a comment.

Fundamentalist Founding Fathers

via Laci, two absolutely fascinating videos.

NRA Board Member Speaks Out

via Fat White Man about the upcoming NRA elections.

You are allowed to vote for 25 candidates. However, please don't just vote for random people on the list that you don't know anything about and please take the time to read their bios. That is how antis like Joaquin "Assault weapons only belong in the hands of the military and police" Jackson get elected. This year I voted for only five.

Don't let that draaawl fool ya. He's one of the fastest bullets in the magazine.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.

Winston Dorian on Lists and Transparency

You can always count on old Winston to be consistent. His recent blog entry publishes the famous "NRA Enemies" list, which we've discussed before. But try to get a list of gun owners who live in Chicago or recent AR-15 buyers in Seattle, and you'll have a fight on your hands.

National Organizations With Anti-Gun Policies. The following organizations have lent monetary, grassroots or some other type of direct support to anti-gun organizations. In many instances, these organizations lent their name in support of specific campaigns to pass anti-gun legislation such as the March 1995 HCI “Campaign to Protect Sane Gun Laws.” Many of these organizations were listed as “Campaign Partners,” for having pledged to fight any efforts to repeal the Brady Act and the Clinton “assault weapons” ban. All have officially endorsed anti-gun positions.
That's his highlighting of the last sentence. You know, "anti-gun positions" like background checks.

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.