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Mass Shooting at Empire State Building

Story developing, but two dead including the gunman. This probably isn’t the time to try to score political points by suggesting New York’s strict gun laws have failed. Let the other side be the ones who exploit tragedy for gain. I have a lot of readers in New York, so I hope everyone’s OK.

37 Responses to “Mass Shooting at Empire State Building”

  1. Dave says:

    This is exactly the time to score political points, unless you want the other side to score them.

    This is part of how Bloomberg’s machine is able to motivate his base. We might find it smarmy, but it is unquestionably successful. Look at the commenting on both the ATF multi-rifle-sale program and the shotgun importability study by ATF. Gun owners got there asses kicked by Bloomberg’s minions. What is particularly frustrating is that the numbers were not that impressive, about 10,000 comments, but gun owners only managed a third of that.

    When Bloomie comes out after an event and capitalizes on the situation, we might find it distasteful, but what this does is start the discussion that he wants, and it frames the discussion along the boundaries that are set by the discussion.

    You can’t “unframe” a discussion once it starts, and it’s very difficult to change its course. It is very much like purchasing a vehicle from a very good salesman. Unless you skills to out negotiate, they will probably get the better of you.

    So long as we continue this mindset as a lobby, we will be continually on the defensive. Our rights will not be reclaimed on defense.

    • Sebastian says:

      You make an interesting point. Might be worth a separate post to talk about.

      • Jake says:

        Please do. I think it is certainly worth a good discussion: How much do we gain by remaining on the moral high ground vs. How much do we lose by deliberately placing ourselves on the defensive?

        • Harold says:

          Exactly. I think we want to avoid the general modern Republican instinct to go for the capillary.

      • Alpheus says:

        While I think this is a good point, isn’t there something to be said that, by passing strict gun laws, they’ve already framed the terms of the debate? We *know* what they are going to say: “This is why we need even stricter gun laws.” The rejoinder is always just as easy: “Really? If strict gun laws are the solution, then why did this happen? Why are all the surrounding areas that *don’t* have strict gun laws, so much more peaceful?”

        Pointing to Chicago is just as bad. A typical weekend has four to twelve murders, and we’re supposed to use this as an example that the rest of the country needs strict gun laws. Never mind that the rest of the country doesn’t have *nearly* the rate of murder that Chicago does!

  2. Jacob says:

    Bloomberg doesn’t have a base. People do not contact their reps. demanding more gun control.

    • Dave says:

      Underestimating Bloomberg is how we got murdered on the multi-rifle sale comments. Go to the ATF page under FOIA and read the public comments. His team out commented ours 3 to 1.

      Yes, his minions do write their elected officials, and make public comments on administrative rules, and get involved in out of state elections, write letters to the editor (have you been reading keepandbeararms.com?)

      • Jacob says:

        Bloomberg has bags of cash and a handful of paid lackeys like Stu Loeser (sp) and John Feinblatt. He does not have the ability to motivate the public on his proposals. Gun control is such a non-issue in his own NYC backyard I can count on one hand the total number of politicians who even mention it at election time.

        • Dave says:

          That is just false. Yes he has scads of cash and paid lackeys, but the evidence is there for those willing to look. ATF’s web page has the public comments for the multi-rifle sale registration, the most often copied / pasted comments are attributable directly to Bloomberg’s “alert”, in fact, buried in the FOIA data is the person from MAIG asking where to send the comments – I think by fax.

          This guy is a leader in the movement to ban firearms. he uses incidents to amplify his political efforts. When his group puts out a press release and that release is picked up, people comment online. His group mines the comment contacts, and in some cases he has state level social media people collecting that contact info for their efforts.

          Have you even checked Allnineyards? Sean has unearthed GOVERNMENT PAID MAIG employees in some cities doing exactly this. He found this in Florida!

          Why do people on our side refuse to accept Bloomberg as a legitimate threat to gun rights?

      • PT says:

        Our “team” consisted of myself and John over at No Lawyers Only Guns and Money. MAIG has money, mailing lists, and motivation. We have that and more but NRA does not utilize their already existing capabilities for stuff like that. I have tried to talk to them about it and have only gotten the cold shoulder (relating to issues in Michigan). NRA flubbed that one badly and the blog-o-sphere is the only reason we made a counter effort.

        • Most of the credit on this is due PT who did all the programming. I merely hosted it on my blog.

          That said, we generated over 3,200 responses to ATF. Interestingly enough, though all of the Brady Campaign’s and MAIG’s pre-formatted responses have been posted on the ATF site, no one from our side has ever been posted there. Hmmm.

          http://www.atf.gov/about/foia/atf-submissions-for-public-comment.html

          • Dave says:

            I thought I saw email alerts from a few state gun rights groups too.

            I looked through the AFT comments, and I found several socialized comments from our side. I checked my mail, and though I can see the send on Jan. 4, and i get an acknowledgement on Jan. 7, my comments are not in the pdf.

            You can do a find in the various documents on several key phrases “grant of authority” shows up in hundreds of the comments from our side and several more phrases.

            Another interesting point; The pages of “MAIG” comments are a petition like document which I did not think were “allowed” as a public comment. In other words, they have to be individual comments, owned, and ‘for attribution’.

  3. Ian Argent says:

    Not sure how many “points” could be scored here for our side, at least in the immediate aftermath. Police were literally around the corner, largely negating the “minutes away” line. We won’t know if the firearm was legally obtained or not for a while yet, and in either case the story can be easily framed to hurt the cause of freedom, unless it turns out this guy was several sigma away from sane, and this was overlooked by the licensing authorities.
    NYC has an onerous possession permit process, and almost any black-market firearm has to have come from elsewhere, after all.

    • Dave says:

      True enough. PR is a minefield and if you’re a rookie at it, or not as adept at it then you are bound to make mistakes. Lots of Grassroots gun rights groups have stumbled in the press, or legislative activities and usually learn from it.

      The point is still there though, that the “news cycle” is going to pick up data from the people who are talking and bloomy loves to talk, even when what he says is outrageous. We do know that permits to carry are like hens teeth in NYC and unless this guy was politically connected sure he was breaking the law. But is that a good point to make?

      NYC makes possession contingent upon a permit, and it is crazy hard to get a carry permit. Probably a better point to make was “dozens defenseless as NYPD & bad guy shoot it out on NYC streets”

      Their whole scheme of “regulation as a means of elimination” is responsible for creating and sustaining the black market they try to blame on other states.

      • Harold says:

        I thought it was crazy hard to get a possession permit. As in there were less that 60,000 for handguns in the city the last time I checked, and long guns were almost as restricted (when things got messy in Soviet Georgia just before the end of the Soviet Union and the authorities confiscated licensed guns we were astounded there were more of them there, in the bleeping Soviet Union, than in NYC).

  4. sparky says:

    Word is some of the victims were hit by the cops.

    • terraformer says:

      All but one of the victims 8 of 9, were shot by police. The 10th is the shooter. I just saw someone claim the MSM is calling this a mass shooting too.

      • aeronathan says:

        Sure wouldn’t be the first time that NYPDs shooting skills were demonstrated to be worse than a drunken crosseyed chimp…

        • Dave says:

          Why would you make such a hateful, prejudicial claim?

          About cross-eyed chimps?

          ;-)

        • Ian Argent says:

          Wonder if this might suggest that cops start using red dot or lasers for more positive targeting. Yes, they used to be clunky and unwieldy, but that’s not the case any more.

          • Weer'd Beard says:

            Wouldn’t make a difference, the cops there probably don’t have to qualify with their pistol more than twice a year (and most police forces only do it once) and the shooting test is so easy I could get somebody who’s never fired a gun in their life to qualify inside of a day’s training.

            Most cops never fire their gun outside of the qualifications.

            Give them lasers, give them match-grade triggers, give them XS Sights, you still can’t shoot for shit if you never shoot your gun more than 100 rounds a year.

            • Ian Argent says:

              NYPD self-insures if I recall correctly. But other departments may be pressured into upgrading their sights by their insurance companies.

      • Spade says:

        According to the Commissioner the cops fired 14 rounds from a distance of 5 feet. And hit 8 bystanders.

  5. karrde says:

    The linked news story claims one deceased besides the gunman. A would-be-mass-shooter not successful, maybe?

    But nine other wounded…most by police cross-fire in the final confrontation, if the linked CNN story updates are to be believed.

  6. nathan says:

    u dont by this veing a mass shootung at all. But a targeted killing of the only dead victim and a bunch of innoncent bystanders shot by a couple of cops with itchy trigger fingers. Had the cops not been that close this the headline in the metro or crime sections of the new york papers would have read ” Disgruntled former employees kills old boss”

  7. Ian Argent says:

    Looks like “wait and see” may be the best policy. CNN is now suggesting that the majority of victims may have been shot by the police.

    Incidentally, if the shooter was firing at the cops, they have a really crappy binary solution set: take fire without responding or take the chance that a passer-by backstops a 9mm. I’m reasonably familiar with the locale, having spent way too much of my college days visiting the Compleat Strategist on 34th Street via the 33rd street PATH station, and the odds of a shot hitting something soft at 9 am are sadly good.

    • If you read some of the later accounts, the wounding of bystanders by police has disappeared from the story. It makes you wonder if NY’s Finest are a bit ashamed of their shooting skills and have put pressure on the press to suppress this.

      • Ian Argent says:

        As of this writing, the NYTimes still is quoting the police commissioner as dating that bystanders may have shot by officers.

        Commissioner Kelly is reported as saying that the police fired 14 rounds total, and that nine bystanders went to the hospital. The shooter’s weapon is identified as a .45 of eight round capacity, three rounds into the primary victim and at least one unexpended round. The math is left as an exercise for the student.

        Wonder why the commissioner is so quick to hang the officers out?

  8. thirdpower says:

    and assuming that the majority of victims were shot by the police, that fact will be studiously ignored by the anti-gun groups.

    • Matthew Carberry says:

      No, it will be used as evidence that “concealed carry vigilantes” can’t be trusted to carry in public.

      After all, if even “highly-trained police officers” miss and hurt innocent people how much worse will it be when a lawful carrier intervenes? =/

  9. St Marks says:

    What’s the surprise here, gun control didn’t work, again, but it’s the pro gunners fault to them, just like it was before this or other shooting.

    But NYCers also have a surprising talent and calling BS. For exmae, a while back a cop shot a pitbull to save a man the dog was “protecting.” a lot of mid age women and hipsters screamed, but also a lot of people, including the guy who taped it, said they would do the same (shoot the dog to
    save the man’s life.)

    I think in big cities like NYC there are just too many BS to keep us occupied and worried (like
    Those 115 dollar double park tickets). Guns, believe it or not, isn’t an immediate concern for most of my comrades of the republic. They’ll tuned it out like they had done. Most don’t even know there’s a MAIG.

  10. Andy B. says:

    “Most don’t even know there’s a MAIG.”

    St. Marks had an interesting point; how often do we get hot and bothered over something that most people don’t pay the slighted attention to? That’s regrettable, that they don’t, when it’s something like “Fast & Furious,” but on the other hand most of the posturing by our opponents falls on mostly disinterested ears. Often, only those with a preexisting agenda cite it for self-justification. If I asked my wife, she wouldn’t know what either F&F or MAIG were.

    • Matthew Carberry says:

      Folks don’t have to know there’s a MAIG if MAIG is accomplishing their goals with money and steering press coverage.

      MOst people don’t know about the Stonecutters either, and yet Steve Guttenberg is still a star.

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