EPIX Pulling Fraudulent “Under the Gun?”

Bearing Arms is reporting the EPIX is showing the video is no longer available. Here’s hoping this isn’t just a technical glitch. Couric earlier expressed “regret” for the editing, but didn’t offer an apology or to make things right by re-editing that segment. That tells me she’s looking to let off some of the pressure on her, which is honestly the time to dump even more on her. No quarter. Sadly Couric doesn’t have much of a career left to destroy, but I don’t see any reason to let off the pressure for her fraud.

Weekly Gun News – Edition 38

Back from the long weekend with lots o’ tabs that need a clearin’.

Apparently HBO is also doctoring interviews a ‘la Katie Couric. Starve the beast! Cut the cord!

The Onion couldn’t have come up with a better parody of the ridiculousness of British attitudes on weapons.

Charles C.W. Cooke is asking the left if Trump’s rise is giving them second thoughts about this gun control thing. It ought to.

Their ultimate goal with expanding prohibited persons: Man denied gun permit in NJ because of his bad driving record.

Gavin Newsom is finding out gun rights isn’t just an old fat white guy issue anymore.

Big Commonwealth Court decision on the privacy of LTCF records.

One of the architects of the SAFE Act convicted of corruption.

I’m not sure I’d go so far as to say this represents “trashing the Second Amendment,” but the Libertarian Party always seemed to be more of a debating society than a political movement.

I’m glad to see NRA denying media creds to outfits known to be hostile. The Louisville Eccentric Observer wrote a bunch of anti-NRA articles, with one talking about they wish the NRA would just disappear. After the convention they whine about not getting media creds. Smallest violin fellas, playing right here. All we ask for is a fair shake.

Joe Huffman: “Anti-gun people should vote against Hillary to keep guns out of the hands of the American people.

Joe also catches the Asbury Park Press in a moment of hypocrisy.

Our opponents are focusing on suicide prevention, and tugging on heart strings. Last night down at my local train station, about a mile from my house, a man threw himself in front of an oncoming freight train and quite effectively killed himself. This is becoming a bit of an epidemic around here, but you don’t see people blaming CSX and Amtrak. More ground prep for gun control from Vogue here.

Does anyone still watch The Daily Show?

Still trying to work out a deal to allow Sunday hunting in Pennsylvania.

Yahoo is doing its part to help get a Dem in the White House this fall: “Trump’s Gun Views in Spotlight Amid String of Accidental School Shootings.” If you say so.

Black Guns Matter!

Chicago Tribune writer Charles Madigan buys an NRA membership and thinks he’s infiltrated the organization. What a tool. I’m wondering if he’s related in some way to Lisa Madigan, Illinois Attorney General.

Background check battle at PA state capitol. We already have background checks for handguns in PA. Long guns are very rarely used in crime, and the background check law doesn’t do much to keep gang members in Philly from shooting each other. But hey, lets double down on failure.

Eugene Volokh: “Trump’s potential Supreme Court justice list is actually very good

It would seem repealing PLCAA has become a real goal of the gun control movement under Bloomberg.

Dave Kopel has an excellent backgrounder on the PLCAA and why it was necessary to pass it.

No, next question. “Should Pennsylvania require every firearm to be a ‘smart gun’? The fact that this question is even being asked is why there won’t be any smart guns on the market. There’s enough people out there clearly signaling their intention to make them mandatory, we’ll destroy any manufacturer that produces one.

John Richardson found that the NRA Trump endorsement is actually pretty controversial based on an article he wrote. I fully expected they would endorse Trump, so it wasn’t a surprise to me. All that’s going to matter to them is having say on who gets to replace Scalia and any other future justice, and his list was pretty good.

Gunpocalypse continuing in California. I fear for California, der Krieg ist verloren. We’re only saving that state through exercising federal power under the 14th Amendment. Hang tight and hope the calvary comes.

OK, I’m starting to wonder if Townhall/Bearing Arms has an advertising agreement with SIG :) We are a house divided ourselves. Bitter is a SIG gal, whereas I am a Glock dude.

Thirdpower: “The only times ‘gun control’ can win is when they dump millions of dollars into it and lie to the public.” Yeah, basically.

DC Circuit Court of Appeals suspends order requiring DC to issue permits. You might be about to find out the cost of Obama stocking the DC circuit with as many judges as he has.

Pennsylvania Firearms Law Seminar to be held on August 6th.

Miguel: “Apparently the Brady Campaign does not read the news.


Something Must Be Done!

“Something must be done,” is the first step in the political process. Shouted by ignorant voters, who find some problem they don’t like. Not even considering complexity, nuance, grey areas, or unintended consequences, this low-information sentiment is latched on to by politicians eager to assert their power: “This is something, so therefore it must be done!”

It is in this vein that the Sun Heard says, “Enough is enough, we must get guns under control!” The article starts off with examples of a criminal element out of control, and inevitably arrives here:

We don’t want to take firearms from responsible gun owners, but it’s hard to imagine any of these people fit that description.

Ah yes, it’s just that easy. The central premise of gun control is that criminals obey gun control laws. If only we had this law or that, none of these bad things would happen. If this were so, California would be a crime free paradise, rather than having a violent crime rate higher than the national average, and higher than it’s neighboring states that lack California’s strict gun control laws:

“What is alarming to the police is that they have no power to ascertain the potential criminal background of an armed individual until a crime is committed, and by then it is too late,” said Ladd Everitt, spokesman for the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, an advocacy group.

That’s typically how it works Ladd, even with permits, because the police can’t stop someone without reasonable suspicion the person is committing a crime. That’s the law. There is no earthly reason in this day in age when police have laptops in their cruisers, that they can’t determine whether someone is eligible to possess a firearm in a few minutes, if it comes to an actual stop. Permits are entirely unnecessary.

Wishing Everyone a Nice Holiday Weekend

I’ve never liked saying Happy Memorial Day, but I do hope you all get to enjoy some time with family and friends. Summer here officially started (weather wise) Thursday. I guess we don’t get a spring. But there are upsides:

BBQ Memorial Day Weekend 2016

It’s hard to find good Q up here in yankeeland, so I have to make it myself. An 8lb Boston Butt for pulled pork either tonight or tomorrow (depending on when it gets finished), and some armadillo eggs to tide us over until the butt is ready.

How to Play the Game

Phil Van Cleave made the very sensible decision make his own recording of his entire interview with Katie Couric. That should be a lesson to all of us who might find themselves in a position to deal with the media. If VCDL hadn’t done their own recording, Couric would have simply denied that they manipulated anything, and that would have been that. Who are you going to believe? The crazy gun nuts?

This story got legs because VCDL knew better than to trust the media. None of us should. I’ve been ignoring requests from media for years. I just won’t talk to them. Now this story has some real legs because there was proof. Hell, even NPR agrees she was out of line. The only sad part about all this is that, unlike Dan Rather or Brian Williams, Couric honestly doesn’t have much of a career left to destroy. She’s never been a journalist. She’s a propagandist.

Our Opponents Are Still Bullshit Artists


Looks like Katie Couric was caught using Daily Show tactics to make gun rights advocates look like clueless slobs.

“Katie Couric asked a key question during an interview of some members of our organization,” he said. “She then intentionally removed their answers and spliced in nine seconds of some prior video of our members sitting quietly and not responding. Viewers are left with the misunderstanding that the members had no answer to her question.”

I’m shocked! PJ Media has more to say about it here, noting:

The documentary’s director, Stephanie Soechtig, said in a statement: “I never intended to make anyone look bad and I apologize if anyone felt that way.” Of course not.

Yeah, I don’t believe that for a minute. Couric is no better than Dan Rather or Brian Williams. There is no integrity left in journalism anymore. The fact that they did this begs the question of how often they do this to others?

UPDATE from Bitter: Last night NPR reported on this controversy and said flatly:

“This manipulation — and that’s what it was — would not pass muster at NPR under its principles for fairness in handling interviews.”

This is getting real traction across many, many outlets. And they are frequently laying the blame at the feet of Katie Couric. From NPR:

“The deception reflects poorly on Couric, too. She conducted the interviews, serves as the movie’s executive producer and has promoted it extensively. She saw a polished cut of the documentary before its release.”

Third Circuit: No 2A Right to Machine Guns

Thompson Submachine Ad

This decision was released right before I left for Louisville. The Third Circuit contains Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey, and has not, in general, been a very Second Amendment friendly circuit.

Heller and subsequent decisions in our Court make clear that the de facto ban on machine guns found in § 922(o) does not impose a burden on conduct falling within the scope of the Second Amendment. Turning first to Heller, we note that that opinion discusses machine guns on several occasions, and each time suggests that these weapons may be banned without burdening Second Amendment rights.

I’ll be honest, I think that’s a misreading of Heller. The Heller opinion does strongly imply that perhaps bans on M16s might be permissible, but it does not explicitly state it. The Court’s opinion calls the reading of Miller that would rule the NFA’s machine-gun provisions unconstitutional “startling.”

Read in isolation, Miller’s phrase “part of ordi­nary military equipment” could mean that only those weapons useful in warfare are protected. That would be a startling reading of the opinion, since it would mean that the National Firearms Act’s restrictions on machineguns (not challenged in Miller) might be unconstitutional, machineguns being useful in warfare in 1939. We think that Miller’s “ordinary military equipment” language must be read in tandem with what comes after: “[O]rdinarily when called for [militia] service [able-bodied] men were expected to appear bearing arms supplied by themselves and of the kind in common use at the time.”

I think the Court is correct, except I think the only fair way to determine “common use” is to examine whether the weapon is part of “ordinary police equipment,” the police being the nearest modern analogue to the militia. If the Heller “common use” test were untempered by any analysis of police equipment, the government could evade the “common use” test by banning any new defensive technology before it has a chance to end up being commonly used, as the State of Massachusetts tried to do with electric stun guns (which SCOTUS struck down recently).

So was the NFA truly banning unprotected weapons that have no common defensive use, or was it merely trying to evade Second Amendment protections by preemptively banning it before the people had a chance to speak? To look at that, you have to look at what the police are choosing to arm themselves with, since police carry guns for self-defense, and not to conduct battlefield operations. Are machine guns in common use among police? I don’t know, but the courts should be asking that question before simply categorically declaring machine guns outside of Second Amendment protections.

DC Officials Defying Court Ruling?

Over at “The Federalist,” it is reporting that the author, Devin Watkins, went down to the DC Police Station and applied for a license to carry, leaving the “good cause” section blank. He was told by the officers that they had been instructed to ignore the court order that good cause may not be considered in applications. It never ceases to amaze me how lawless of a lot of big city officials are. If they deny anyone a license for lack of good cause, everyone up and down that chain of command should be held in contempt.

As it stands now, DC is claiming it never told officers any such thing, and that they will be complying with the court order as long as it is in effect. They also say anyone denied a permit for lack of good cause my reapply.

Playing Catch Up

I arrived back from Louisville to an urgent client project with a deadline of Friday, so I’ve been unable to post. We will be returning to our regularly scheduled blogging shortly. I’ll probably have a few things later this afternoon. Do you ever feel like taking vacation isn’t worth it? One of the things I’ve learned over the years is that two weeks is the minimum to really unwind and forget about work. Anything under that and you tend to just shift work around, rather than really accommodate for vacation time.

NRA Member Engagement – Voting

One of the best reminders that NRA really does represent a real grassroots movement is that members directly elect the board of directors. There’s a clearly defined way to become a voter and the results are published openly.

I’ve added this year’s numbers to my collection of NRA voting data. There are a few interesting differences this year over previous years.

The number of voting members who were sent ballots has increased 36.5% since I started keeping track in 2006. Most of that growth has happened since 2011 when there appears to have been a cleaning of the rolls.


The yellow bar is how many were mailed back vs. how many were mailed in red.
2016S represents the special recall election of 2016.

The number of voters actually participating in the elections is, unfortunately, not very high and not growing substantially. But given that we have a growing problem of too many celebrities and are losing activist leaders with diverse skills, this may not be a great number. It would probably be better to see more informed voters rather than increasing numbers of people voting for any name they vaguely recognize from popular culture.


Perhaps one of the most interesting statistics is the fact that “last winner” was on a fewer percentage of ballots than ever before. The same was almost true for the top vote getter as well. (Technically, last year’s top vote winner, Ronnie Barrett, was on a lower percentage of the ballots, but not by much.) Those two numbers indicate to me that more voters are more likely bullet voting – voting only for a handful of candidates instead of all 25 slots. That’s actually a much smarter way to vote if you’re interested in getting key candidates on the board. Increasing the votes of those who you care about less could end up hurting your favorites on the ballot.

Another good number from this election is that the percentage of invalid ballots is still low – 2.79%. That’s compared to a high of 8.71% from the years I’ve been tracking. The most common mistake is marking too many candidates. But the next highest mistake is an easy one to fix – remembering to sign the envelope before you seal it and mail it. A whooping 723 voters didn’t have their ballots counted because of this authentication error.

Perhaps the most important thing to consider is what a difference only a few votes makes. The difference between the candidate who did make the 25th seat and the one who did not was only 841 votes. That’s a number smaller than some 100% NRA clubs. Votes do matter, and I loved that NRA started giving out buttons to members who took the time to vote in the 76th director race. If they keep doing that, you know I’m going to start a collection and wear them on my pass each year. :)