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Can’t Both Sides Lose?

Henry Kissinger is rumored to have said, in regards to the Iran-Iraq war, “It’s a pity both sides can’t lose.” That pretty much sums up how I feel about what happened in Charlottesville. For those of you who are wise enough to avoid social media, it has been non stop “fascism and nazism descending on America because a few hundred idiots got together and Charlottesville and did what idiots tend to do.

I’m told variously I have to speak out. No I don’t. I down own kooks. I don’t own those people any more than people who voted for Bernie own that dude who shot Steve Scalise, or people who voted for Hillary who own this guy. Let’s establish that we all think murdering people is wrong, that violence is bad, socialist authoritarianism, whether national or international flavor is bad, fascism is bad. I’ve always been more of a pragmatist than a hard ideologue, so I’m OK condemning a whole host of isms.

So no, I definitely don’t own a few hundred loser white supremacists or antifa protesters who decided to get out of mom’s basement for a day and beat each other up over a statue.

I’ll leave you all with Ace of Spades:

But as John Sexton points out, you can’t expect a culture to praise all sorts of Identity Politics — flat-out racist groups and gender supremacists — but say that one group doesn’t get to play by the same rules.

Either it’s all poisonous garbage, or it’s all got something of merit to it.

I believe the former. But the media — and the establishment right political class — cannot continue with this incoherent claim that Identity Politics are permissible for e everyone except The One Group Which is Truly Odious and Cursed by God.

People will not accept that. No one will accept his subordination without a fight of some kind.

I agree. It’s all poisonous garbage, and if we don’t abandon it for the good of the country, it’s only going to get worse.

Standing

Standing has always been a useful concept for courts who don’t want to hear or decide on the specifics of a case, to have a convenient way to dispose of the case without having to reach there. So the FBI has been taking NICS check data and cross referencing it to the Terrorist Screening Database for a number of years now.

Here you have two theories of standing. One is that because the cross reference didn’t in any material way affect your ability to buy a gun, you have no standing to sue. Only someone who is singled out for different treatment because of the cross reference has standing. The other theory is that because your purchasing information has been used in a way not authorized by law, that the mere act of having your data cross referenced to another database creates standing in and of itself.

Guess which theory of standing was adopted by the federal courts so far? If that theory holds, no one would have standing since the FBI doesn’t use the screen to influence the person’s NICS status. It presumably just creates an alert. The cross reference might be illegal on the part of the FBI, but no one can challenge it.

Washington State is Probably Lost

Gun owners there are on borrowed time, at this point. Washington State has a fairly iron-clad preemption law, but that didn’t prevent the Washington Supreme Court from upholding Seattle’s gun and ammunition tax. You can find the full opinion here.

One wonders how much Seattle could get away with taxing guns. $50 per gun? $100 per gun? A dollar per round of ammo? It wasn’t even close. Only a single justice argued that Washington’s preemption statute forbids any ordinance touching on firearms at all, which it clearly says.

Weekly Gun News – Edition 64

I’m pretty much back to 100% since my several day stay in the hospital. I’m surprised how much it took out of me considering they weren’t doing anything to me other than monitoring for a dangerous side effect of the Sotalol they started me on. I felt worse coming out than I did going in! Now I have some mental cycles to spare on a news links post:

Detroit Metro Times on Constitutional Carry: “In this case, there’s another reason; your average good ol’ boy doesn’t like paying the $100 application fee for a concealed weapon permit, plus subsequent fees every few years to renew the license.” Or maybe, just maybe, the fee disenfranchises vulnerable populations of their right to self-defense, and serves to perpetuate white privilege. If it cost $100 to vote, they’d throw a screaming fit. Remember your Alinsky: Make them live up to their own standards.

Hard to argue: “No knock raids should be banned except in cases of imminent threat to life.

I’ll be honest, I’m not optimistic the GOP controlled Congress is going to accomplish anything important in the next two years. But if all we get out of Trump is another two solid Supreme Court justices, it might be enough to move the ball forward a good bit.

NRA-ILA: Poll shows overwhelming support for more background checks is actually underwhelming. Well, we know that. Last time Bloomberg put the issue before the actual voters he very nearly lost in one state, and outright lost in another, both of which were purplish blue states. Even in a deep blue state he didn’t win by the margins polls said he should have.

SAF has won a FIOA action to find out how much revenue Seattle is collecting from its gun tax. The tax was never intended to raise revenue. It was meant to prevent the wrong kind of businesses from operating in Seattle. No different than if they were trying to drive out book stores or newspapers with punitive taxation.

Annette Evans: “There Is No Crying in Shooting.” Having once gotten a bit of powder residue behind my eye protection and into my eye, I’m not so sure!

Yes, we do love ourselves some good old fashioned law and order, don’t we?

A plea deal is probably the best this guy’s attorney was going to get. To me he seemed rather unbalanced.

Bloomberg’s The Trace: “The NRA’s New ‘Carry Guard’ Program Has Some Certified Trainers Seeing Red.” They link primarily to this article. I don’t really have a problem with NRA selling concealed carry insurance, but I do have a very big problem with it undermining its own long standing training programs in favor of something that to me looks very poorly thought out.

I’ll give NRA credit for doing some reporting that a decade ago we’d never have seen anywhere other than the blogosphere.

NRA is pushing ballot reform in Maine. This isn’t directly a gun topic, but the ballot has been Bloomberg’s primary tool to achieve wins. He lost in Maine, but generally speaking if you have enough money, you’ll win ballot fights. They’d be foolish not try to shut these mechanisms down. Personally, I think ballot measures should be unconstitutional under the Guarantee Clause, but what do I know?

 

“I’m From the Government, and I’m here to Kill You”

Dave Hardy’s latest book, “I’m From the Government and I’m Here to Kill you” is now available for preorder on Amazon. I’m told it should ship in a few weeks. I’d strongly recommend the introduction:

The proposition that a king, a government, can do wrong is central to the Declaration, America’s foundational document. So how did America get to a situation where government employees, “public servants,” can kill by sheer sloppiness and walk away? Where an agency can level a town and kill six hundred citizens and escape all responsibility? Where a federal agency can run guns to Mexican drug cartels, causing hundreds of deaths on both sides of the border, and wash its hands of the matter? Where veterans can die awaiting doctors’ appointments, and the hospital administrators can collect their bonuses and walk away?

Answering these questions requires a brief look at legal history. English common law developed the concept of “sovereign immunity,” commonly expressed as “the King can do no wrong.” But common-law sovereign immunity was actually a narrow concept. A subject could not sue or pros- ecute the king, but could take legal action against anyone carrying out the king’s orders. Americans could better hold their government accountable when they were ruled by George III than they can today!

Read the whole thing.

Pardon Me if I Find Gun Control Groups’ Concerns About Suicide Prevention Hollow

This article talks about how gun owners are more receptive to suicide prevention efforts that respect gun ownership. You don’t say? It’s not like this community is unaware or doesn’t care a whit that firearms are an effective tool in the hands of someone intent on ending their lives. Believe me, we know. But pardon me I call the gun control crowd’s concerns about suicide prevention a load of crap because they keep trying to pass laws that make suicide prevention a crime:

The culturally tailored message was then used as part of a nationwide survey of more than 800 gun owners to determine the likelihood of it causing owners of firearms to engage in multiple key gun safety behaviors for suicide prevention – such as asking a suicidal person to give away his or her guns temporarily to another trusted individual.

Except Bloomberg has been going state-to-state trying to make that a crime. I have a standing order with family to remove my access to firearms if I ever have that kind of mental health crisis, but in states like Washington, where Bloomberg has been successful, that is a crime if you don’t first get the person in crisis to an FFL to pay hundreds of dollars to transfer the collection to the “trusted individual,” and then pay hundreds more once the crisis ends. The Oregon legislature was smarter, and made an exception to its laws, but there is a factor of “imminence” in the exception. Generally speaking, transferring a firearm to a “trusted individual” in Oregon is a crime. In Pennsylvania, this is also the case for handguns, unless the “trusted individual” has an LTC.

So don’t give me this bleeding heart shit. If gun control people gave a crap about suicide they wouldn’t be pushing for laws that criminalized gun owners for helping out friends.

A Bright Future

Exurban Kevin:

We haven’t hit that “dot com bubble” yet with gun culture, because since 1994 (or even earlier…) our culture hasn’t been based around expanding our rights and welcoming new people into the fold, it’s been built on fear and defensive warfare that bitterly clings to what few rights we had left.

We’re on the cusp of something truly wonderful here. Let’s not let past fears ruin it.

I tend to agree with Kevin. I’m an optimist on gun rights, but a pessimist on nearly everything else. Trump is doing a great job helping to expand gun rights into key Democratic demos! All we need is another one or two justices, and we’re probably set for a bright future.

It’s a shame to hear about Bearing Arms. I don’t think that really has any bearing on overall trends in the gun world. I think it does reflect the loss Bob Owens, who basically built that brand.

PLCAA Showdown at Connecticut Supreme Court

Connecticut Law Tribune: “Amicus Groups Try to Sway Conn. Supreme Court in Sandy Hook Hearing.” This is an area where gun control groups and ivory tower law professors would be smart not to push these kinds of absurd theories of negligent entrustment, and hopefully the Connecticut Supreme Court isn’t going to buy it either:

Thirteen law professors specializing in common-law torts discuss how negligent entrustment should apply to Remington and Bushmaster. The professors filed their brief to “provide the court with further direction regarding the common law foundation of the tort of negligent entrustment, including relevant scholarship and judicial decision.”

The brief’s co-author, Stanford University law professor Nora Freeman Engstrom, said negligent entrustment boils down to whether a defendant took adequate precautions. “And, here, the jury might ultimately find the defendant failed to take adequate precautions in their sale of military grade assault weapons to an untrained population,” according to the brief.

We left exceptions in PLCAA specifically so that dealers which violated the law, or who committed the actual tort of negligent entrustment, not this fanciful, bizarre tort being foisted by these law professors, may still be sued despite the general immunity provided by PLCAA. Under the theory proffered by those siding with the Plaintiffs, a tort would be created for any type of complex and potentially dangerous product, such as automobiles. Because drunks sometimes plow into school busses, Ford and its dealerships have to make a reasonable efforts not to sell cars to drunks. Why wouldn’t gas stations also have such a duty?

Currently under PLCAA, if someone walks into a gun dealer and says, “I’m really pissed off at my wife. Let me see that .357,” and the dealer sells it to him anyway, if he later kills his wife the family would still have a viable action against the dealer.

If the gun control crowd wins on these arguments, that selling an AR-15 to any civilian represents negligent entrustment because some people might do bad, evil, or stupid things with them, do you think we lack the political power and will to narrow PLCAA’s exceptions? The law is not a scalpel. Narrowing the exceptions to PLCAA will almost assuredly let some folks who ought to be open to suit gain immunity. But if the gun control groups win on this theory we will have no choice. I’d also expect a host of other industries who sell complex and potentially hazardous products to also start demanding immunity.

 

Peak Social Issues?

Say Uncle asks whether we’ve reached peak social issues. My prediction is that no, we have not. But I think every new generation is always looking for things they can do that will piss off their parents, and the Millennials had to reach to completely absurd levels to accomplish that. So things really have no where to go but backwards.

I believe over the next 50 years, this country is going to see a good old fashioned religious revival, not unlike the ones we had two centuries ago. Only it won’t be strictly protestant, and probably will have a lot of tendencies none of us today will like. I don’t dare say socialism, because I’m not convinced Generation Z has any better idea what Socialism actually is than Millennials do. There’s already evidence the ground work is being laid.

We even have our very own Jacksonian in the White House.

Another Article on African American Gun Ownership

Patrik Jonsson, whose reporting on the gun issue has always been pretty fair, writes: “There’s evidence that black gun ownership has spiked since the 2016 campaign began. While white Americans have led the liberalization of gun laws in the past decade, black gun carry is becoming a test of constitutional agency.” Gun control historically targeted minority communities for disarming. It’s just now we’re nice enough proceed with a fiction that because the fees, the requirements that you have a squeaky clean record, and the high level of education required to comply with the patch work of laws and regulations apply to everyone, that means we don’t worry about disparate impacts on minority communities, even though we worry to death about that in every other context.

NRA should be very concerned that this movement is happening outside their umbrella, and adjust its rhetoric accordingly. At the very least, outreach and coordination with Black gun rights groups is in order.

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