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No Charges for Lehigh County Sheriff

It is actually a crime in Pennsylvania overcharge for a License to Carry, but the District Attorney for Lehigh County isn’t going to charge the Sheriff. It would appear that the Sheriff is going to make clear the state mandated $25 dollar license is available, but will still issue the credit card sized $38 dollar license. To me this is preferred. We are required to carry the licenses with us while carrying, and an oversized piece of paper isn’t going to last five years in a wallet. But it looks like some jurisdictions that issue cards are going to stop because of the controversy, and go back to just the state prescribed paper.

One Month After McDonald

National Review Online takes a look at the impact, and discusses the various new cases that have appeared. SAF and Gura have a good mix of cases, with varying degrees of risk, and in several different circuit courts. His strategy seems likely to result in some victories. I am less optimistic about the success potential of the NRA-backed Benson suit, largely because the 7th Circuit has shown itself to be fairly hostile to what the Supreme Court is trying to impose on them. I think the 7th Circuit will let Daley keep his onerous laws, not because that is correct legally, but because the 7th Circuit, if they can’t eradicate the right, probably wants it to be relatively meaningless. There’s still plenty of room to try. I wouldn’t care to speculate on the outcome of Nordyke (gun shows on County property) or Maloney (Nunchakus).

Beware the Spear Gun Loophole

I think everyone knows what emotionally damaged and unstable individuals divers are. If they didn’t have tendencies toward suicidal behavior, there would be no such things as cave diving. There is no sea life that is safe as long as we reject reasonable regulations to keep dangerous spear guns out of the hands of emotionally unstable divers.

Bankruptcy Protection Passed House

This is good news. Overall I consider this to be a minor step forward, but what’s more interesting is the process and the votes. This will also be, potentially, the first pro-gun bill that will be sent to President Obama in whole form. His action will be very interesting.

This bill only exempts one firearm of any value, or up to $1,500 for a combination. It’s ambiguous as to whether it covers NFA items, because it covers a “rifle, shotgun, or pistol.” It does not provide a definition of these items, or refer to which definition from the United States Code applies, but my feeling is there’s a good case for NFA items not being included in this exemption.

You can see the recorded votes here.  Even more than the gain we get if this passes, it helps weed out friend from foe. All Republicans except for one voted for this. The one Republican no vote was Charles Djou, who I won’t be donating any more money to. He’s going to lose come November anyway, and I don’t support lost causes that vote against one of my key interests on what should be an easy vote. Even Mike Castle voted yes. Patrick Murphy, my own Congress Critter, voted yes. The no votes are the usual suspects, but some of the yes votes are surprising.

Sea Kittens Are Back

Looks like PETA is trying to convince Hawaiian Airlines to celebrate Sea Kittens, their new name to endear fish to people so we will stop eating them. If God didn’t intend us to eat fish, he wouldn’t have made them taste good. Now it appears PETA thinks Sea Kittens need an official airline. Personally, I’m wondering how soon I can get an  X-Plane livery for the 737. That’s a pretty good paint job the PETA intern did on that. Maybe they should start a Sea Kitten virtual airline. The problem is then they’ll be complaining that X-Plane realistically simulates bird strikes. Blood on the windshield and all. But maybe PETA doesn’t care about the Air Bunnies that get stucked into turbofans.

Hat Tip to Bitter

Going Nazi

Thanks to Instapundit for this very interesting article from Harpers in August of 1941. The premise of the article is, who might you know that would go Nazi? Very well written, and four months before the US would get involved in World War II.

It is an interesting and somewhat macabre parlor game to play at a large gathering of one’s acquaintances: to speculate who in a showdown would go Nazi. By now, I think I know. I have gone through the experience many times–in Germany, in Austria, and in France. I have come to know the types: the born Nazis, the Nazis whom democracy itself has created, the certain-to-be fellow-travelers. And I also know those who never, under any conceivable circumstances, would become Nazis.

Read the whole thing.

Clearly They Have Not Learned from Stevens Media

SayUncle is reporting that Knox News had some of their content stolen by an Examiner.com writer. I’m sure Righthaven would be happy to sue the writer and Examiner.com if given half the chance, without warning or attempt at resolution. Clearly Knox news has not adopted the new business model of the failing old media. But Jack McElroy notes:

Apparently, search engine optimization is more important than basic beat reporting, these days. That’s not only sad; it’s scary.

Yes. That is the basic truth. Examiner.com’s business model is really based entirely on bringing traffic to their site, regardless of whether that traffic represents people getting value out of the content, or just arriving on a search term. That’s one of the reasons Examiner.com exercises very little editorial oversight over their content producers — if they did it would actually be a detriment to their business model. Their strategy is to put as much content out there as possible related to specific topics, and then dominate the search rankings for those terms. The quality of the writing, or the value of the content have little bearing on bringing search engine traffic.

Google is going to necessarily have a profound impact on reporting and news gathering, and groups like Stevens Media, and the reporter here, obviously don’t get there’s a benefit, search engine wise, to having one of your stories widely linked, even if the linker quotes a little from it. But the legal implications of the Examiner.com model are interesting. The fair use doctrine uses a four factor test in trying to determine whether a use of copyright works is fair. One of those factors includes “whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes.” Examiner.com directly makes money off advertising, of which it shares a portion of with, on a per-page-view basis, with its content producers. This would be a factor that would weight against a fair use ruling in Court.

But Examiner.com itself would not be an attractive target for a shakedown in the manner of Righthaven’s suits, because they presumably have the money to hire lawyers, and would be more interested in protecting their overall business model than they would be in a quick settlement. It would be very interesting to find out, also, whether Examiner.com would be able to claim immunity under the safe harbor provision of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act. I would tend to doubt it, but the line between service and content providers is getting increasingly less clear.

Quote of the Day

From SayUncle on the whole Brady and VPC lines regarding the unstable nature of people filing for bankruptcy:

Of course, I guess they’d both know a bit about the mindset of someone facing bankruptcy.

Is someone keeping an eye on Paul and Josh for signs of depression? Better check their offices for sharp letter openers and heavy blunt objects. Lest they do something rash.

Closing The “Air Gun Loophole”

As other countries go, New Zealand is a relatively easy place to own guns, but they are getting more restrictive all the time. Now it looks like they are moving to close the dreaded Air Gun Loophole:

Police Minister Judith Collins announced this month that the Government planned to change the Arms Order to require anyone who bought or owned a pre-charged pneumatic (PCP) air rifle to hold a firearms licence.

The moves comes after undercover policeman Don Wilkinson and an east Auckland man were killed in separate incidents after being repeatedly shot with a PCP FX Monsoon semi-automatic air rifles.

The United Kingdom regulates air guns according to muzzle energy. Even over here, you’ll often hear the term F.A.C. in regards to air guns. In the UK, any air rifle over 12 ft. lbs. of muzzle energy requires the owner to hold a Fire Arms Certificate, just as they would with an ordinary rifle. I’m not sure whether that’s based on manufacturer specifications, or whether you can go to jail if you modify your rifle and accidentally push it over. I would suspect the latter. You know if they did that here it would be the latter. In fact, if it were here, ATF would fire dozens of different types and weights of pellets through until they got the number they wanted to prosecute you, even if nothing you fired out of it ever exceeded 12 ft. lbs.

Update on Cumberland Public Range Shooting

They’ve performed the autopsy, but aren’t releasing details, except to say he was shot multiple times from a distance. They are still asking people to keep an eye out for his rifle which was taken from him.

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