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Virginia Court Upholds Governor’s Gun Ban

Judge upholds Virginia governor’s Capitol gun ban

The law is no obstacle where the powerful feel threatened. She ruled that there’s no right to carry a firearm on government property per Heller. That’s not a huge reach: Heller says government buildings specifically. But statutorily, Virginia Law limits the Governor’s powers in regards to restricting firearms. That is a reach. But if they find a judge actually willing to apply the law in this case before Monday, I’ll eat my hat.

Remember, when the wealthy and powerful want something, they will usually be successful at getting it. Bloomberg wants your gun rights. The key lesson here for other states is put the hard work Virginians are putting in now before it gets to this. Work to ensure the party doing this pays a price electorally. Sanctuary is a desperation move, and if you live here in Pennsylvania with me, or in Florida, we are not there yet.

Lobby Day Logistics for Virginians

VCDL is getting the word out. I really hope my concern about this is severely misplaced. A strong rally can help stave off the worst. But it has to be an epic showing, and nothing can go wrong.

The January 20 Protest

I’m very sorry to say that I can’t find much to argue with here.

But hey, maybe I’m all wrong, and it will be a Kumbaya love-fest between pro-gun 2A boomers arriving with their CCW pistols, Antifas from Redneck Revolt and The John Brown Gun Club with their shields and clubs (and guns?), actual neo-Nazi “accelerationist” idiots, lefty trolls dressed as Nazis, the Bloomberg “Everytown” gun grabbers, climate change activists, pro-life and pro-choice groups, the Richmond Police, the VSP, the FBI, the ATF, and all the other Lobby Day participants. What could possibly go wrong? (Not to mention that FBI and VSP super-high-res crowd scanning cameras will capture every face and cell phone interaction for social network analysis and future use.)

Except he’s a lot more optimistic about the Courts fixing things for us than I am. I’m hoping to be proved wrong. The crowd in Richmond on the 13th was peaceful. So has the sanctuary movement been. But there’s going to be a lot of assholes who will show up to cause trouble, and he’s right that VCDL isn’t going to stop them from showing up.

Everytown’s Finances

I’ve done a lot of Form 990 analysis on this blog over the years, but a change to the tax requirements for non-profits gives us some more insight. Previously, the IRS did not make the Schedule B public, which for most non-profits lists any donor over $5,000, but for 501(c)(3)s lists any donor that goes over 2% of funds raised. Recently the rule was changed so that non-profits could submit their Schedule B without identifying information. This provides some transparency but without allowing the Twitter mobs to target big donors.

So Everytown raised a record 67 million dollars in 2018, according to their Form 990. According to the Schedule B, 39 million of that was raised from one donor. I think we can all guess who that is. But even Mike Bloomberg has friends. They raised 4 million more dollars in million dollar donations. That takes us up to 43 million raised from rich assholes. If you count the rest, if my math is right, Everytown raised 47.2 million in donations over $5000, leaving about $20 million raised in increments lower than $5000. Now that’s way more than Brady could have dreamed of a few years ago, but 47.2 million will buy you more fundraising muscle than Brady could have afforded.

Indeed, Everytown spent 2.4 million on fundraising. A generally acceptable return is $1 back for every 24 cents spent, so Everytown should have raised about 10 million just based on their fundraising spend. That’s assuming Everytown is getting average fundraising efficiency. I’d bet because they hire good people they are beating 24 cents on the dollar. It’s not unheard of to get 12 cents on the dollar, and they might be doing that.

If the rich assholes disappeared from the books next year, Everytown’s yearly take would be about 20 million. Ten million of that would be spoken for just in management expenses and fundraising, and the rest wouldn’t cover payroll. So they would be a very different organization with very different concerns were the big donors to disappear. I’d note that Everytown’s top paid exec is only pulling $350,000 (take note, Wayne), so they aren’t blowing a lot of money on execs.

Two donors pledged to them 17.6 million in stock, and they actually took possession of 1 million worth of pledged stock. But that doesn’t count toward their money raised: it’s an asset. Those are counted as non-cash gifts which is a different line item.

The Everytown 501(c)(3) is harder to tell, because the public support test the IRS uses is largely a joke. A $50 million dollar charity with fifty $1,000,000 donors is a charity with 100% public support. In fact, because that calculation is done over a 5 year period, you could sneak in a few larger donors under the radar without budging your public support percentage very much at all. The IRS also only requires that you count the overage over 2% of gross receipts, so if a donor donated $1,000,001 dollars, the million is public support. Only the $1 counts against it.

So what does the charity look like? Pretty similar in terms of dependence on rich assholes. They took in 37 million. 12.4 million of that came from donors who donated more than $740,000. So you’d think that means 67% public support, but that’s not how it’s calculated. It’s 82.4% for that year by the way the IRS calculates it. So a half a million dollar donation to Everytown Support Fund does not need be disclosed and counts as public support. See what I mean about it being bullshit? As they raise more money, more and more rich asshole money counts as public support.

How many of you could afford to donate $5000 to NRA? NRA’s 2017 Schedule B is 30 pages long, with 173 donors donating over $5000. NRA raised 30.5 million from 16 donors over $500,000, but that’s on $311 million in revenue. NRA’s biggest donor donated 18.8 million (who was that?). The next guy down was 1.2 million. NRA’s return shows a lot more depth of support.

Bowl Me Over With a Feather

March for Our Lives is funded by a small number of rich assholes:

The group’s 990 tax form shows another 38 donations totaling between $5,000 and $100,000, which together accounted for an additional $876,114 of revenue. The remainder, just 0.5 percent of total receipts, came from those giving less than $5,000.

It’s organized as a 501(c)(4), which aren’t required to disclose public support percentage, which I’m sure would be abysmal.

Happy 2020

In a few days, the blog will be a teenager. Ten years felt like a long time to blog, which is why I decided I would no longer put pressure on myself to post every day. I appreciate those who still drop by to see the occasional post. If you read one thing today, this is what I’d read.

Fact checking, unfortunately, isn’t what we think it is. Despite the superficial appearance, fact checking isn’t a helpful tool for determining the truth and for forming an accurate opinion. Instead, it’s actually an in/out group filter which segregates people by belief and value, while allowing each group to believe they hold the Factual High-Ground, and to claim any subsequent moral position which proceeds from being “factually correct.” 

Yep

Shapiro’s Bloomberg Appeasing 80% Ruling

Attorney General is often a good stepping stone to Governor. So if you have those kinds of ambition, you’ll want an issue that isn’t liable to get a Virginia-sized revolt going, but that will please your party’s paymasters. Shapiro has found his issue. Bloomberg has a huge hard-on for stopping “ghost guns,” so if you ask me, that’s what this is about. It’s a good old fashioned moral panic among the right kind of people, and these days, thanks to social media, we do love ourselves some moral panic.

Granted, this is just about the most useless thing in the world: literally the only person this is going to deter is someone who has no ill intent. The only thing I can think of that’s more useless are “no guns allowed” signs where the sign is basically the security plan. Shapiro has decided that hunks of inert metal need to be regulated. I suppose you could throw it at someone and cause a decent head injury.

Shapiro’s opinion hinges on the definition in the UFA of “may readily be restored.” OK then. How much machining is needed to qualify? Notice he doesn’t say 80% lower. Is a block of aluminum now a firearm? I have literally no idea how to comply with this opinion. It’s essentially nonsense.

Attorney Josh Prince is of the opinion that if taken to court, it would not end well for the commonwealth, and I hope he’s right.

What Gun Control is About

The Curly Effect:

James Michael Curley, a four-time mayor of Boston, used wasteful redistribution to his poor Irish constituents and incendiary rhetoric to encourage richer citizens to emigrate from Boston, thereby shaping the electorate in his favor. Boston as a consequence stagnated, but Curley kept winning elections. We present a model of the Curley effect, in which inefficient redistributive policies are sought not by interest groups protecting their rents, but by incumbent politicians trying to shape the electorate through emigration of their opponents or reinforcement of class identities. The model sheds light on ethnic politics in the United States and abroad, as well as on class politics in many countries including Britain.

Gun Control is effectively being used for this purpose by the Democrats, and it’s probably not as destructive to a blue enclave as redistributive policies would be, since gun owners are generally less common in the upper classes, and those that are can afford to get around gun control laws anyway. Sure, you’ll loose skilled trades, but you can import replacements, and they will also conveniently vote the right way.

Maybe I’m Wrong

I’ve been saying the boogaloo will probably start in Oregon, but I might need to rethink that prediction, since it seems Oregon Democrats are smarter than Virginia Democrats.

Democratic Virginia Rep. Donald McEachin suggested cutting off state funds to counties that do not comply with any gun control measures that pass in Richmond. 

“They certainly risk funding, because if the sheriff’s department is not going to enforce the law, they’re going to lose money. The counties’ attorneys offices are not going to have the money to prosecute because their prosecutions are going to go down,” he said. 

McEachin also noted that Democratic Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam could call the National Guard, if necessary.

Call out the National Guard to enforce gun control? That’ll turn out well, I’m sure. That move totally has never sparked a revolution at any point in our past. These people are absolutely out of control.

So how does Governor Blackface think this works? How do you determine whose funding gets cut off? If a county prosecutor exercises discretion to not charge an otherwise law abiding person with violating these unconstitutional laws, does that trigger the funding cut? What triggers the funding cut?

Indicted Philly Rep Was Gun Control Leader

John Richardson has done some good citizen journalism on the indictment of Rep. Movita Johnson-Harrell by Josh Shaprio’s office.

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