Weekly Gun News – Edition 59


Do I dare try to see if I have enough links? I dare!

Bloomberg has apparently spent $135 million dollars so far on gun control. So far, he’s made Washington worse, barely eked out a victory in Nevada that turned out to not be much of a victory, and was outright defeated in Maine. I agree with Jacob: not much to show for it. Money can buy a lot in politics, but not everything. Still, $135 million is chump change to Bloomberg.

Anti-gun journalist who has written on the topic for years finally decides it might be time to actually meet a gun owner. Familiarity is the foundation for winning for our issue. People with at least some familiarity are harder to bullshit.

Apparently there are a baker’s dozen law professors who want to argue a theory of negligent entrustment that would make it negligent entrustment to sell AR-15 to citizens at all. You could use the same theory to sue super car makers out of existence. After all, who but a professional driver is qualified to drive a Lamborghini? Welding torches: really for professionals, aren’t they? I used to read a lot more legal writing until I realized a lot of people who do legal writing are brain dead.

Tam: “At what point do you ignore your ego and admit maybe you might could take some lessons?

My impression has always been that Shannon Watts just honestly isn’t very impressive. Seems I’m not the only one. I don’t mean that in the sense that I disagree with her, but she’s not really very good at what she does. That’s a sharp contrast to Bloomberg, who I think has done a lot of smart things, even though I disagree with what he’s doing and wish he’d find better things to do with his money. That probably makes me sexist somehow.

There’s a bill in Pennsylvania to allow school officials to be armed. Josh Prince notes some issues with it. I’d note that it doesn’t seem to muck with the “other lawful purposes” language, just creates an explicit means for school personnel.

The bill to enhance our preemption law continues to move forward in Pennsylvania. Though, I fully expect Wolf will veto it.

This weekend was the March for Science. Making science a partisan issue is a mistake, especially given that scientific ignorance is not specific to a single political leaning. This is more people getting together to congratulate each other for their shit not stinking.

I spent Sunday at the range playing around with this scope clamp, for science! It’s just about as good as having a person spotting for you, since you can instant replay your shots. This is at 200 yards. My PSL was whacking the right-top corner of the plate. My spotting scope is a cheap Bushnell model. Nothing high end.

24 thoughts on “Weekly Gun News – Edition 59”

  1. “Making science a partisan issue is a mistake…”

    Isn’t it a little late to make that observation? The best we could do at this point is, argue over “who started it.” Whoever did, I don’t believe it can be said that the rallies were initiating anything new.

    1. Oh, it’s definitely too late. I think a lot of what bothers me is how many are unaware they are the clowns in someone’s circus. I wouldn’t argue that there’s anything wrong with that, if you like the circus and think it’s fun; I’ve certainly played the role willingly in the past. But it’s important to go into it with eyes open.

      1. I suppose I should hesitate to even allude to the related issue, but one way science becomes automatically politicized is when it becomes the question, what should we teach our children? For example, on one hand we have “creationism” or “intelligent design” (as opposed to “evolution”) cast as being “anti-scientific” by its opponents, while opposing it is cast as being anti-religion and a violation of religious freedom. The theological angle even enters the issue of “climate change” in many cases.

        From that evolves the question of, how much that is “faith-based” is constitutional to teach in public schools? Thus the question of “what is science” becomes politicized.

        1. I have an easy answer to that, but most people won’t like it: we shouldn’t teach Evolution in public schools at all, nor should we teach Creationism! We shouldn’t be teaching *anything* in public schools, because we shouldn’t have the Government tell us what to know, or what to think.

          But most people can’t imagine life without public schools, never mind the abysmal failure our school systems have become.

          1. “because we shouldn’t have the Government tell us what to know, or what to think.”

            There are people who believe we should not have government doing anything at all — including exist — but pending the arrival of utopia, a lot of people think we need to debate how to handle things during the transition,

            Remember that absent The State, there are still going to be forces using various forms of coercion to make us adhere to their wishes.

            1. I’m one of those who believe that government should do nothing — or at least, next to nothing — including existing. I also happen to believe that we’re not going to be able to do that so long as people believe we need government — and I *particularly* don’t want revolution, because more often than not, that leads to more government control, rather than less. I’m not familiar enough with so-called anarcho-capitalists to know if I’m in a minority among such, or if anacho-capitalists in general believe that the only way to get rid of government is to convince everyone it’s not necessary.

              While there will always be forces trying to coerce us, when those forces have to compete with each other, the effect can be mitigated somewhat.

  2. I understand Shannon and John Watts have left backwards Indiana for enlightened Colorado (Boulder area, I think). She seems to be doing less on gun control and more on outraged feminism now. Some have speculated she is aiming to run for either the House or the Senate from Colorado.

    She’s got one and maybe two of her kids in college in Colorado. One even goes to a school that allows campus carry. Imagine that.

  3. Tam: “At what point do you ignore your ego and admit maybe you might could take some lessons?”


  4. Perhaps there needs to be a counter March called the “march for economics”, where the theme is “yes, we believe in science, but no, we don’t want to adopt policies that will bankrupt the country while not changing the temperature of the planet even a tenth of a degree”

    1. “the ‘march for economics'”

      I wonder if there is some way to filter out economic interests from sincerely held scientific opinions?

      Back in the early 1980s our defense-aerospace shop was severely threatened by a lack of contracts/funding. From somewhere came just enough money for our top scientists — authentic “rocket scientists” if there have ever been such things — to begin studying the feasibility of systems to defend against the potential threats of asteroids or comets striking the earth.

      Judging from our water cooler/coffeepot conversations, those gentlemen took the threat quite seriously to heart, and were very serious about the need to address the problem, now.

      Just then Reagan fielded his “Star Wars” (SDI) proposals, and money came flooding back for us to begin feasibility studies of advanced anti-missile weapon systems. Laser weapons, rail guns, name it. Overnight the sincerely held concerns about threatening asteroids seemed to melt away. I doubt those scientists gave it more than a passing thought for the remainder of their lives. We all returned to “problems less galactical, that now seemed far more practical.”

      I don’t want to sound like I’m ridiculing those gentlemen, most of whom I liked and held in high regard. They were brilliant men, and as I said, their concerns seemed to be entirely sincere, to the point of inducing genuine emotions. I just couldn’t help noticing that opinion and concern correlated highly with where our paychecks were coming from.

      1. I think this is human nature.

        On the other hand, there’s probably a bit of human nature to grasp at straws that even remotely advance your concerns.

        For example, a nuclear physicist wanted to pursue liquid salt thorium reactors as a safer alternative to the well-established solid-fuel uranium reactors that could also produce fuel for nuclear weapons. When the Air Force came to him with a desire for a nuclear powered airplane, his thought was “That’s a stupid idea! Nuclear airplanes are too impractical!” but since the only practical reactor for such a thing was the one he wanted to develop, he said “Sure thing! I have an idea that just might work!”

        Sadly, the project itself was cancelled, even though the initial proof-of-concept demonstrated that the technology has a lot of promise.

        Ultimately, I think the answer is to keep government out of science, and let the scientist, technicians and engineers figure out what to do…

        But that solution has its own problems (the least of which is “how do you get government out of science?”).

        1. “Ultimately, I think the answer is to keep government out of science…”

          But per my comment above regarding “schools,” you are still going to have forces of coercion attempting to control science for their own purposes.

          To return to schools for our example for a moment, there is a school of belief that public education was invented for the purpose of creating a body of workers who knew just enough to be exploited to the max, and to like it that way. Trained to do something they hated, docilely, for six hours a day while taking arbitrary orders.

          Be that as it may, I am old enough to remember when (where I grew up, anyway) public education was largely run by and for Protestant Christians. The point of that observation being, “control” of our lives is always demanded and achieved by some controlling political faction.

          In the case of “science,” it would largely become defined by the highest bidder or the holder of the most guns. The church controlled science (see, “Galileo” and “Copernicus”) that defined scientific truth until it lost control.

          1. In some ways, that’s the way it is right now: military research (the guys with the most guns, who want to keep it that way), and big company/government research (the highest bidders).

            I *suppose* we can set up Patreon accounts for some of this, but it’s kindof hard to get enough donors for rockets big enough to get to the moon and back, and for super-colliders and Tokamak fusion generators (although the case has been made that Tokamak was a false-flag operation developed by the Soviets to keep the West from developing fusion; I can’t argue with that, any more than I can argue with the suggestion that Ada was a computer language developed by the Department of Defense as a false-flag operation to keep the Soviets from using reasonable computer languages…)

  5. I used to read a lot more legal writing until I realized a lot of people who do legal writing are brain dead.

    A lot of legal writing is somebody trying to argue either the opposite of what a reasonable person would think or making a simple argument incredibly complex.

    Both gun rights and search rights are great examples of this.

    “Do police have the power to…” NO is a great answer to any way that question ends.

    1. “Both gun rights and search rights are great examples of this.”

      I agree.

      With regard to Trump’s Muslim Ban, I heard it said that “while it may not be unconstitutional to do a certain thing, it becomes unconstitutional if it is shown that the purpose for doing it was unconstitutional.”

      I was shocked to hear that from a jurist, because while I thoroughly agree with that and always have, countless examples can be found of it being violated, yet the outcomes considered to be totally constitutional. For example, the very first federal GCA, that imposed a prohibitive transfer tax on NFA weapons, because at the time the consensus was that an outright ban on them would be unconstitutional; while a prohibitive tax was considered an acceptable way around the constitution. But, its purpose was prohibition for most citizens.

      More frequently, there is the use of the threat of withholding federal funding to force states or municipalities to do things the federal government can not constitutionally force them to do by direct legislation or regulation.

      On the issue of “search,” many of us here in Pennsylvania remember when the legislature made several minor summary offenses, “custodial” offenses, that you can be arrested for. The purpose of the legislation was to give the police a way to perform “legal” searches (“for the cops’ safety”) when there otherwise would be no reasonable cause; the cops were POed because courts had overturned many of their best convictions because they had been based on illegal searches. I thought it was a prime example of a law being unconstitutional because its purpose was unconstitutional; i.e., to enable unreasonable searches. But it appears the courts don’t see it that way.

  6. Ouch. Bloomberg is worth $48 BILLION. That is a lot of money. Even if most of it is tied up in equities, he could probably spare to spend $1 billion on gun control and he wouldn’t lose any sleep over it. I’m glad that money doesn’t buy everything, given his lack of concrete results for all that money spent. However, knowing how much money he has to hand out on the topic, I am not surprised to see all these fools coming out of the woodwork.

    1. “I’m glad that money doesn’t buy everything, given his lack of concrete results for all that money spent.”

      I monitor a lot of left wing sites, and the one issue that almost no one on the left really cares about is gun control. It may be mentioned in a laundry list of de riguer Democratic Party issues, but it is no one’s hot-button issue on the left; and in the neo-fascist era, a surprising number of people on the left are beginning to appreciate the necessity for being armed.

      That’s the good news. The bad news is that no one on the right really cares about gun issues either (present company excepted) other than to flesh out their own laundry list of issues. Their top three issues are 1) abortion, 2) abortion, and 3) abortion, followed closely by supporting corporate welfare, as long as it’s subtle welfare.

  7. From Tam’s post:

    “””Tam, you’re so inconsistent! Just a few weeks ago you were talking about how if someone took a basic four-hour class, stuffed an LCP in a pocket holster every day, and made it to the range quarterly to make sure they still knew how it worked, they’d be way ahead of the game.

    Then yesterday you’re talking about working on speed and buying yourself a timer and shaving half a second off your concealed draw to a 3×5 card. What gives? Which is it?”””

    I find it somewhat hard to believe that someone would think that observing that a person only needs to have basic training to carry a gun precludes the possibility of Tam, personally, pursuing her own hobby with gusto. Her entire point was that while one can pursue the hobby with gusto, overall, it’s not necessary!

    And I especially appreciate the snark about the people who are so devoted to the hobby that they shoot 300 rounds weekly, but aren’t willing to take lessons to improve. You don’t need to go full-out in training, but if you’re shooting weekly, then hey, maybe going full-out is just the thing for you!

  8. I haven’t had my PSL out in forever.. always did pretty well with light ball ammo.. good times.

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