Sotomayor Still a Lock

Mark Warner has joined some of his fellow Democrats in supporting Sotomayor.  But I don’t particularly appreciate the quote seen here:

“I’m very disappointed. [NRA seems] to be going beyond their Second Amendment issues, particularly when I think the judge’s positions on those issues are still fairly open,” Warner said. “I trust in her judgment and temperament. I think the NRA at some point has gone beyond its mission, and are perhaps allowing themselves to get hijacked by those who are in the extreme.”

Fairly open because she didn’t answer any questions, even on vague constitutional principles which she ought to be able to answer.  If there’s one thing I’ve disliked about guys like Tester, and now apparently Warner, is that they’ve been entirely willing to carry water for virulently anti-gun people for the sake of their party.  Most Democrats seem to be lining up with the party on this one, which is what I expected.  Like I said, we aren’t doing too badly with this Senate, but there are obviously limits to how far we can push. Scuttling a nomination is difficult.

Switcheroo Coming?

Corzine’s prospects are looking increasingly dim.  Smart politics for the Dems would be the old switcheroo, but I don’t think Corzine’s ego will let it happen.  We’ll see.  In a battle between the Democratic Party machine in New Jersey and Corzine’s ego, I’m not honestly sure which one wins.

More Facts in Schuylkyll River Trail Shooting Case

Looks like more details are emerging in the Schuylkyll River Trail shooting, and the Montgomery County DA is dropping the most serious charges:

As DePaul tried to get onto the bike trail in Conshohocken around 8:30 p.m., two juveniles on bikes reportedly blocked his path, officials said. Though DePaul was able to get around them, both juveniles followed him, according to the district attorney’s office.

After the teens passed the 27-year-old cyclist, the juveniles collided with each other, and as DePaul rode by them, they “exchanged words” with him.

Soon after, the 17-year-old got back on his BMX bike and chased DePaul, police said. After catching up to him, the teen kicked DePaul, causing him to nearly lose control of his bike and hit a fence, police said.

DePaul admitted that he drew his Keltec .380-caliber handgun and fired six shots in the direction of the teen who had kicked him. One bullet struck and flattened the rear tire of the fleeing bicycle.

The juvenile was about 200 to 250 feet away at the time, authorities said. At the time of the incident, DePaul had a legal permit to carry the weapon.

So, the facts would appear to be that the kids were in the process of trying to rob DePaul of his bicycle, he attempted to flee, and they continued chase, then assaulted him.  He drew a pistol, and they fled.  Still not a clean shoot, but considerably more justifiable than the previous narrative.  In essence, given multiple attackers, he was justified up until the point he fired.  Had they not fled, I would argue the jury should walk him if the DA were bold enough to press charges.

I think this incident has cemented for me the utility of pepper spray, as this incident would be a really good example of a situation that it was useful.  Had he sprayed them instead of fired, he would have been home that night drinking a beer on his patio, thinking about how good it felt to send the punks home crying to mommy, rather than trying to explain to police and DA why the shooting was justified.

Domestic Abuse

Call Frank Lautenberg, because tonight, Bitter beat me.  Twice.  Last week she attended our Thursday silhouette league, and did pretty well.  This week she shot a AAA score of 24 air pistol, open sights.  I did not even manage to shoot a AAA score with Mata Gallina.  If you start shooting competitively, you’ll start getting very good at making excuses for shooting badly.  For tonight, here are the excuses I thought up.

  • I let her win, because I like to encourage new shooters, you know.
  • I gave her the gun that I did a trigger job on, whereas mine is still shooting right from the factory, and Crosman triggers right from the factory are pretty appalling.
  • I wasn’t wearing my favorite shoes.  The shoes I was wearing have a springy air cushion in the heel, which pushes me forward onto my toes, and I don’t get a good stable balance.   Bitter was wearing platform shoes, so this excuse is particularly lame, which is why I’m proud to have thought of it.
  • Red dot sights on Mata Gallina I got yesterday still aren’t quite where I would like them to be, whereas the sight settings on my open sight gun are about as good as I can get them.
  • It was very hot and humid out, and Bitter being from Oklahoma has an unfair advantage.

I could probably think of a few more if I had enough time.  But the fact is she beat me, fair and square.  Naturally this means I need to transfer my pellet trap to the car so she can’t practice while I’m at work.

Business Climate Fail

Pennsylvania ranks the 17th worst state in the United States to do business in.  Before there was hope and change, there was Fast Eddie, who rode into office promising to do something about this, but proceeded to do nothing of the sort, and instead went about raising our tax burden by 49%.  You can see the whole ranking here.  Even California beat us!

Not Good Enough

Republicans had better watch it, because considering I’ve seen more action out of Harry Reid’s overwhelmingly Democratic Senate, than I ever saw in 12 years of Republican control, I’m not pleased to see this:

The Brady Campaign, the anti-gun group that had experienced a rather tough run during the Bush administration, is pointing out that three Republican senators who were endorsed by the National Rifle Association in their last campaigns have committed to supporting Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Sen. Mel Martinez (R-Fla.), and Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) have all come out for Sotomayor, as has Sen. Arlen Specter (D-Pa.), who ran for re-election in 2004 as a Republican.

Considering some of Alexander’s other votes, maybe it’s time for the people of Tennessee to send him packing.

Research Much?

Article lamenting NRA’s political power:

The NRA won that fight. My candidate lost. And it’s hard to think of a fight the NRA hasn’t lost over the past 30 or so years. Because of the NRA, it’s okay for people in the U.S. to buy automatic assault weapons, to circumvent permit laws, to carry concealed weapons, to be armed at bars, schools and churches, and essentially to buy, sell, do or use any weapon. The purchaser’s mental health doesn’t seem to matter. Neither does past criminal activity. Nor does the opinion of law enforcement officers who face the real threat of being outgunned by law breakers.

Automatic assault weapons?  Circumvent permit laws?  Armed at schools?  Buy sell or use any weapon?  No mental health or background check?  This isn’t the gun laws I live under.

No one should fear these days that their right to own guns is in jeopardy. Rather, the big fear should be that people are carrying guns everywhere, and that many people have serious arsenals of weapons, including grenades and other explosive weapons, legally purchased.

I don’t think we’re afraid of that anymore, although we know some will still try for it.  No, now the goal is to make the Second Amendment mean something, and yes, that means I can “bear arms” for personal protection, without undue interference by government.

Pay Pal’s Gun Policies

PayPal has long had a problem with people using their service to buy guns, or even gun related parts or items.  I avoid using PayPal as much as possible, which ends up being that I only have to use it (because I want something, and that’s all they take) once or twice a year.  PayPal, even aside from the gun issue, is pure unadulterated evil.  See here.

Kevin has quite the story about how PayPal treats gun owners, and publishes their customer service number for people to complain about their policy.  Personally, I just wouldn’t use it.  The sad part is, there aren’t a lot of services out there which are a reasonable substitute for what PayPal offers.

Not Good News

Nordyke is going En Banc, meaning it will be heard by the entire circuit.  This usually indicates that the consensus of the circuit is that the decision was wrong, and it likely means Nordyke will be overturned.  This would remove the circuit split, but as Eugene Volokh points out, having two third of state Attorneys Generals speaks loudly, and the other circuit decisions are inconsistent with the Court’s modern incorporation doctrine.  So we might still be going to the Supreme Court with incorporation, but this isn’t a welcome development by any means.

But hey, the 9th is the most reversed appeals court of all the federal circuits.  Maybe this puts us in a better position if the Supreme Court does take up the issue.