May 5, 2016
Seen on the Internets, via Tam:
At this point we’re going to get a probably anti-gun president or a definitely anti-gun president.
What I’m trying to avoid is the constant losertalk of “OH MY GOD BURY YOUR GUNS AND BUY ALL THE PRIMERS” that I had to put up with in ’08 and ’12. We’ve beat this before and we’ll beat it again. Now send some dough to the NRA-ILA, SAF, and GOA, then hop out of the wagon and help pull this thing.
I am by no means pleased Trump is the presumptive nominee, but I do not join with many on the right with all the doom and gloom. If there’s one thing I won’t be in the business of this election it’s predicting Donald Trump.
I actually don’t think Trump will be too bad on the gun issue. I know, I know… he’s said anti-gun things in the past and he’s duping people and lying to us. The truth is they are all lying, except the rare pol who’s actually a shooter. They arrived at their position on this issue by cold political calculation, and as many other interests as Trump has goofed and fumbled, he’s been more consistent with us. So I don’t worry about Trump on the gun issue too much. Though on everything else…. that’s a different story.
But even if the worst case happens and Hillary is President for the next four or god forbid eight years, we’ll weather. Oh, we may have setbacks. Some may be quite severe. But if you look at the success of the concealed carry movement, the gun rights movement is probably the only movement active today that could pass an Amendment to the federal constitution, and I think we should be prepared to pull that wagon should it become necessary. I hope folks at NRA are reading. I think we will likely need to think about a federal constitutional amendment to do what the Second Amendment should have done in the first place. It’s a hard wagon to haul, but I think we can do it.
May 5, 2016
Still quite busy with clients. Tomorrow should be better. But Cruz and Kasich have thrown in the towel. Part of me wants to celebrate with a drink! But then I have to consider that makes Trump the presumptive nominee for the 2016 race, which makes me want to have several drinks, maybe enough that I black out until after the elections in November.
I know at least one lobbyist in DC who is happy with the current state of affairs because the right people are hyperventilating over the idea of Trump being the nominee. I think the silver lining (for me at least) is that the SoCo groups in DC that claim to speak for christians and evangelicals are the most hyperventilating of the hyperventilators. So are the K-street consultants that have made a living ruining talented candidates with their bullshit, then moving on to ruin the next campaign. Trump won nearly every state east of the Mississippi, including southern states in the Bible Belt; states that Huckabee did very well in talking about what kind of “Jesus juice” he drank. All Trump did was say he was a Presbyterian. So where does the DC religious right political establishment stand from here? Their best hope is for Hillary to beat Trump, as seems likely if you believe the polling (which I don’t). I could almost enjoy this except for the fact that a lot of other issues I care about will likely get flushed down the crapper too.
The choice is made! The Traveler has come!
May 3, 2016
It would be a pity for this story to get buried under the Obama smart gun smoke and mirrors, but you might remember from last July, the Obama Administration proposed a broad ban on certain Social Security recipients from exercising their Second Amendment rights. Kate Pavlich is reporting the Administration is now planning to move ahead with that regulation. Anyone taking Social Security through a designated payee could be placed in the NICS system as someone who is mentally ill, and thus prohibited from purchasing or possessing firearms.
May 2, 2016
I was very happy to see this article about smart guns in Tech Crunch, where the reporter in question seems to have actually taken the time to understand this issue from our perspective.
It’s bad that the general public — including the majority of casual gun owners — are so confused about guns that they don’t know how much they don’t know. But what’s worse, at least if you’re a gun person, is that lawmakers and activists who know less than nothing about guns often find themselves in a position to confidently enshrine their technological ignorance into law.
This, then, is what the NRA is terrified of: that lawmakers who don’t even know how to begin to evaluate the impact of the smallest, most random-seeming feature of a given firearm on that firearm’s effectiveness and functionality for different types of users with different training backgrounds under different circumstances will get into the business of gun design.
This! The author goes on to give examples of existing follies of lawmakers getting into the business of gun design. I encourage you to read the whole thing. This is especially timely because the media is going nuts over the Friday release of Obama’s Smart Gun Report, which is 17 pages of meaningless platitudes (i.e. par for the court with this Administration).
Miguel notes that NPR has been reporting on this as well. They are focusing on the entirely wrong problem. If they put money into making better safes, it would be far more likely to be a) accepted by the gun community, and b) actually make a difference.
RFID techniques are useless, because they depend on radio transmission which is easily jammed. Anyone who has a smart phone with fingerprint recognition can tell you it’s not nearly reliable enough for life and death situations. For instance, my iPhone won’t unlock if my hands are wet, and it doesn’t work at all if I’m wearing gloves.
Despite the fact that the Administration listed “Limiting misuse of lost and stolen law enforcement firearms” as one of the three primary benefits, anyone who knows anything about how a smart gun would work knows this is bunk. The obvious design technique would be a disconnector attached to a solenoid that when activated would cause the trigger to engage the mechanism. This is not terribly different from magazine disconnect “safeties,” which are pretty easy to circumvent. The only way to make something truly difficult to circumvent would be to seal the mechanism, which means it will never be cleaned and thus will become unreliable, or alternatively, develop electronic triggers. There was one firearm introduced to market with such a trigger and it was not a commercial success, and had numerous problems.
If you look at the report, you’ll notice the prizes the Obama Administration is offering in his three stage competition are a pittance. Stage 1 is the proposal. You get nothing for that, despite needing a design. They note a dozen manufacturers submitted proposals (I’d love to know who. Someone should FOIA that.) and only Armatix and Protobench, LLC advanced to Stage Two.
Stage Two is basic testing at Aberdeen Proving grounds. If you pass Stage Two and advance on to Stage 3 you get $5000 bucks. That wouldn’t even pay an inexperienced intern’s salary for a summer, let alone cover the cost of the prototype that has to be submitted for testing.
If you advance to and pass Stage Three, which is heavy-duty and expanded product testing, which requires multiple guns to be submitted, you get $10,000 dollars. That would likely not even be enough to cover the cost of the guns.
By my reading of the report, they’ve only just begun to give this any real thought, and there’s nothing in this report that’s even 1/4 baked, let alone half baked. Fools like Obama, who have never developed any kind of product in their lives, seriously underestimate how difficult this problem is. It’s probably not that hard to make an unreliable piece of shit, but it’s going to be very difficult to develop a smart gun that would we reliable enough and fool proof enough to see wide adoption by the police, who are probably the group who would most benefit from the technology if it actually worked well.
This whole smart gun thing is pretty much blowing smoke. It’s not a serious effort. Nonetheless, I expect the fools in the gun control movement to sing his praises over this pile of dog shit just like they did over his executive orders.
May 2, 2016
I figure I’ll start out with a gun news post this week, since last week we had a bit of dead air due to having to prepare for a site move. Let’s see what’s in the tabs:
Stop touching it: Anything that encourages people to handle guns in public is an accident waiting to happen, or in this case an accident that did happen. After carrying for a while, I’ve concluded its safer to take a “don’t ask don’t tell” policy towards things like this.
The Brady Campaign has developed a plugin that removes the names of mass shooters from your browser. I’m happy to see them starting to attack true root causes, but I’m afraid it’s the media we need to convince not to publish the shooter in the first place. But they are on the right track.
More books by bloggers hitting the market: Chains of Command by Marko Kloos.
But I thought they were for criminal justice reform: Democrats in New Jersey are against making their arcane rules that needlessly trap law abiding people in serious felonies less arcane and easier to comply with. Remember, they want you in jail.
John Richardson notices Brad Pitt is headlining the Brady Gala. Hollywood’s been a morally bankrupt place for some time now. Perhaps his agents believe he needs to soften his image in this age of Hillary.
Third power notices that Joyce is spending 1.5 million on gun control this year. I think that’s up from what they were spending a few years ago. Of that, $270,000 is going to CeaseFirePA. If it wasn’t for a small handful of elites with tons of money, gun control would have died a long time ago.
Eugene Volokh looks at the First Amendment implications of cyberstalking laws, which is turning into not being able to say mean things about someone on the Internet. This is important to understand since Bloomberg and his ilk are pushing to remove the Second Amendment rights of those convicted of cyberstalking.
Inside Amy Schumer’s lies about gun laws.
Women and guns: a growing trend. (autoplay video warning)
The Dems in California are fighting over who will support gun control more, and the best way forward for implementing draconian gun control.
Bill to repeal magazine ban in Colorado fails. It’ll keep failing unless voters can flip the House back to the GOP.
Gun control in Minnesota: “This is a dog and pony show that everybody knows is going nowhere.”
We’ll see about that: Chicago Tribune says more gun control is inevitable.
Clayton Cramer is looking for a little research assistance, if you’re looking for a way to contribute a bit to the cause.
John Hinderaker: Hillary wants your guns.
Don’t ever let anyone tell you they aren’t after your guns.
Oklahoma is aiming to vote on more comprehensive protections for the right to keep and bear arms. Consider it practice for when we have to do this federally.
Looks like I’m not the only one who noticed Hillary weakened herself with all the gun control talk ahead of the Connecticut primary. Until recently, the Connecticut Valley was still a major gun making region. A lot of those folks are now out of work thanks to the Dem anti-gun crusade. Who do you think those folks are backing?
It’s not just actual firearms. They want your airsoft guns too.
Just as elites are working hard to legalize weed, an effort I fully support, they are doing their damnedest to destroy vaping. That’s because it’s not about public health. It’s about being able to stick it to unfavored constituencies.
Tam: “Nobody’s the villain in their own narrative. As a matter of fact, in our participation ribbon culture, everybody’s the star, and the petty rules and signs and placards and flight attendant announcements don’t apply to them.”
Science: Ion Drive! At least this doesn’t violate the known laws of physics.
Apr 27, 2016
If you are a lawyer headed to NRA Annual Meeting and are looking for CLE credits, or really anyone interested in Second Amendment Law, I highly recommend taking a look at the Annual Firearms Law Seminar. Last year’s panel speakers were quite good. This year’s speakers include “Stephen Halbrook, Ernest Myers, David Kopel, Joseph Greenlee, Teresa Ficaretta, Jonathan Goldstein, Derek DeBrosse, Brent Weil, NRA-ILA attorney Chris Zealand, and NRA Office of the General Counsel attorney Sarah Gervase.”
Jonathan Goldstein is a local gun-rights attorney that NRA has used on some of their more high-profile suits in Pennsylvania. HE’s speaking about “Preemption: The Next Frontier in Firearms Regulation & Litigation” Jonathan is a good speaker, and pretty entertaining. Dave Kopel and Joseph Greenly are speaking about a “A Second Amendment Roadmap through the Federal Circuits.” For a preview, see Dave’s article in the WaPo on the subject. Lots of other good stuff.
I should note the Early Bird signup ends this Friday, so if you were thinking about going, you might want to sign up before then to get the discount.
Apr 27, 2016
They haven’t even been in place for four months, and already the rest of the camel is coming under the tent. Via the Firearms Policy Coalition:
Authored by Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), the bill massively expands a controversial law that has only been in place for 4 months. At present, current law permits family members and peace officers to petition a court, in secret, in order to restrain an individual from possessing firearms. AB 2607 compounds this measure by adding, to the list of qualified petitioners, employers, coworkers, mental health workers, and employees of a secondary or postsecondary school.
There’s way too much potential for abuse with this, and as FPC has pointed out, it would put gun owners in fear of seeking any kind of health treatment for fear an anti-gun doctor will report them to the authorities, causing them to get raided.
They are showing their cards. They want to be able to deny you a fundamental, constitutional right on the flimsiest of evidence with no due process, and if Hillary wins in November, they will almost certainly get away with it.
Apr 27, 2016
I have to join Steve from the Firearms Blog in suggesting that this isn’t the best way to help the public image of gun shows. We’ve spent a lot of effort over the years to bring this issue out of the shadows and into the mainstream. When I first started going to gun shows back in the late 80s, early 90s, it was pretty much your stereotypical middle aged white males, and some fathers would bring their boys. Today I see mom and families going, sons along with daughters. This didn’t happen by magic. It was a deliberate cultural struggle to make gun shows seem mainstream to your average person, despite a huge effort by anti-gunners to make them seem shadowy. Guys who do crap like this don’t help things. In fact, they help Bloomberg.
Apr 27, 2016
Hillary laid the gun control rhetoric on strong in Connecticut, and it also happens that of all the states Hillary took in the “Acela Primary” she won Connecticut by the thinnest margin. While the fairly parse polling in Connecticut showed the race close, she didn’t effectively beat the margin of error in the polling averages. Additionally, while she took Newtown, she lost 5 out of the 8 surrounding towns to Bernie. She had been building on her lead earlier in the month. I’ve noticed that Hillary tends to do better the less she opens her yap.
I’m not saying guns was the prime motivating factor here, it’s just that often Democratic candidates retreat to the gun control rhetoric believing it will help them, when it’s pretty apparent it doesn’t. Donald Trump is running on a pro-Second Amendment platform, and comfortably blew Hillary out of the water on primary vote count in both Newtown and in every community surrounding it.
Apr 26, 2016
Polling done by the NSSF shows that 72% of Americans disagree with Hillary Clinton on repealing the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. Even a plurality of “Strong Democrats” favor PLCAA. Independents and voters who lean Democrat overwhelmingly support PLCAA.
Ultimately, I think people get that you don’t sue Seagrams from Drunk Driving accidents, and don’t sue McDonalds over the obesity epidemic. Culturally, I think we’re very well off with the right to keep and bear arms, despite an overwhelming cultural campaign over the past few years to try to consign us to the dustbin of history. Unfortunately, I think over the past several, gun rights politically is being swept along by winds from a brewing political storm of historic proportions, and our destiny is now well beyond our control.
Clinton stands a very good chance of winning in November, not because she’s popular, but because the Republican Party is not united, and may be in the process of completely cracking up. Obviously, with the court the way it is, we won’t have a Second Amendment if Hillary picks the next few justices on the court.