A Geek With Guns

Chronicling the depravities of the State.

Archive for the ‘Gun Rights’ tag

Some Days Aren’t Your Days

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Some days are destined to not be your days. That’s probably how Christopher Raymond Hill felt a few days ago:

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (WSVN) — Police say a man who tried to carjack two people was thwarted after the victims both pulled out guns to protect themselves.

What kind of America do I want to live in? One where a carjacker tries to carjack two separate vehicles and gets a gun pulled on him by both would-be victims.

It’s also worth noting that Florida has castle doctrine. According to gun control advocates, castle doctrine leads to the streets overflowing with blood due to all of the people legally shooting each other. Even though Hill was posing an immediate threat to the lives of the people he was trying to carjack, neither one of them gunned him down. Despite what gun control advocates often claim, most people aren’t looking for an excuse to gun another human being down. In fact most people seem to prefer avoiding violence if necessary. It is only when pushed into a corner that most people are likely to retaliate violently and even then the general preference appears to be avoiding violence is possible.

Written by Christopher Burg

June 14th, 2018 at 10:30 am

Your Corporate Overlords

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When people think gun control, they usually think of legislators passing laws to prohibit gun sales and ownership. But legislation is just one of many ways to control commerce. Intuit, the company that makes QuickBooks, has thrown a wrench into the operations of several gun stores:

A number of businesses were recently interrupted, without warning, after the company refused to process orders of gun-related sales, according to the New York Post.

Intuit is claiming that it hasn’t purposely cancelled any transactions, its service can be used to purchase firearms, and it is working diligently to get to the bottom of this. Who knows what the truth is? But I do want to take this opportunity to once again reiterate my belief that gun companies need to consider starting their own bank. Several banks have attempted to wield their influence by interfering with the firearm market. The only way to guard against such interference is to cut third-party banks out of the equation.

Corporations aren’t strangers to interfering with matters outside of their business. Large corporations can wield a tremendous amount of control. The silver lining is that, unlike government, corporations can be cut out of business markets.

Written by Christopher Burg

June 13th, 2018 at 11:00 am

Posted in Gun Rights

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The End of Enforceable Prohibitions

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I’m fond of pointing out to prohibitionists that the era of enforceable prohibitions is over:

In the very near future, governments will lose the ability to keep guns, drones, and other forbidden goods out of the hands of their subjects. They’ll also be rendered impotent to enforce trade and technology embargoes. Power is shifting from the state to individuals and small groups courtesy of additive manufacturing—aka 3D printing—technology.

Additive manufacturing is poised to revolutionize whole industries—destroying some jobs while creating new opportunities. That’s according to a recent report from the prestigious RAND Corporation, and there’s plenty of evidence to support the dynamic and “disruptive” view of the future that the report promises.

Throughout history power has ebbed and flowed. At times centralized authorities are able to wield their significant power to oppress the masses. At other times events weaken those centralized authorities and the average person once again finds themselves holding a great deal of power.

Technological advancements are quickly weakening the power of the centralized nation-states. Encryption technology is making their surveillance apparatus less effective. Cryptocurrencies are making it difficult for nation-states to monitor and block transactions. Manufacturing technology is allowing individuals to make increasingly complex objects from the comfort of their own homes. The Internet has made freely trading information so easy that censorship is quickly becoming impossible.

We live in exciting times.

Written by Christopher Burg

June 12th, 2018 at 11:00 am

The Only Ones Responsible Enough to Own Firearms

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Remember, kids, only government agents are responsible enough to own firearms:

He was trying to bust a move but ended up busting a cap.

An off-duty FBI agent dropped his gun doing a backflip on the dance floor of a Denver bar — then accidentally shot a fellow reveler while scrambling to pick up the piece, according to a report.

The real icing on the cake is the fact that the gun didn’t go off when it hit the floor (drop safeties are a great feature when you’re dancing with a gun held in a shitty holster) but when the agent went to pick it up. That’s two major fuck ups in less than a minute! Talks about government efficiency!

If you’re going to dance with a gun, wear a goddamn retention holster. And if you’re gun falls out of its holster, don’t scramble to grab it (unless somebody else is trying to snatch it). It’s not going anywhere. Instead calmly pick it up so you don’t do something stupid like pull the trigger and shoot an innocent bystander.

I’ve Been Told this Never Happens

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Whenever a gun control advocate is demanding that innocent gun owners be punished after a mass shooting, gun rights advocates point out that individuals carrying guns are the best defense against mass shootings. Usually this results in the gun control advocate claiming that such an event never happens:

An armed citizen gunned down a shooter at an Oklahoma City restaurant on Thursday, killing him, police said.

A man walked into Louie’s Grill & Bar and opened fire, striking two people. As the gunman was fleeing the scene, a bystander armed with a pistol confronted the shooter and fatally shot him outside the restaurant, Oklahoma City Police Captain Bo Mathews told reporters.

“Right now, all I know is that it was just a good Samaritan that was there and looks like he took the right measures to be able to put an end to a terrible, terrible incident,” Mathews said.

Since it’s CNN, I’m not surprised that the article used the verbiage “gunned down” but the fact that CNN ran this story at all is a bit surprisingly.

The key to reducing casualties in a mass shooting scenario is response time. The sooner armed resistance can be made against the shooter, the sooner the shooter will either kill themselves (a very common result in mass shooting scenarios) or disregard bystanders as they fight for their life. The fastest possible response time comes from somebody at the location when the shooting begins, which means the best way to decrease the number of casualties caused by a mass shooter is to allow individuals to carry a firearm on their person so that there’s a higher probability of an armed individual being at the location when the shooting starts.

Written by Christopher Burg

May 25th, 2018 at 10:00 am

Going from Smart to Stupid

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Last year the National Rifle Association (NRA) appointed Pete Brownell, the CEO of Brownells Inc., as its president. It was a smart decision. Brownell comes off as a reasonable human being and is a strong advocate for gun rights. This year the NRA decided to perform a complete 180 degree turn and elected a public relations nightmare:

Oliver L. North, who became a household name in the 1980s for his role in the Iran-contra scandal, will become the next president of the National Rifle Association, the gun rights organization said Monday.

The gun control crowd is already having a field day with this decision and I don’t blame them. It looks a bit hypocritical when an organization that talks insistently about “responsible gun ownership,” “law-abiding citizens,” and “enforcing the laws that already exist” has a bona fide weapon smuggler as its president.

Supporters of the NRA are trying to spin this by pointing out that the Iran-contra fiasco happened a long time ago but that is irrelevant. Time tables don’t matter in the realm of public perception. All that matters is whether gun control advocates are able to convince enough people that North’s previous actions are still relevant in the context of gun politics. If they can accomplish that, the NRA will face even more opposition.

Written by Christopher Burg

May 11th, 2018 at 10:30 am

It Doesn’t Matter What the Majority Says

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Every political argument seems to eventually boils down to polls. It makes sense since polls indicate what the majority wants and the majority should be listened to, right? If, for example, the majority of Minnesotans support stricter gun laws, then the politicians should respect their desires, right?

A majority of Minnesotans support stricter gun laws in the United States, including wide backing for a ban on military-style rifles and for raising the age for gun purchases from 18 to 21, a new Star Tribune Minnesota Poll has found.

This is usually the point where I would point out the way polls are manipulated to get desired results. For example, if you poll urban individuals about gun control, you’re likely to get a different result than if you poll rural individuals. Likewise, if I’m a publication with a predominantly Democratic readership, the results of my poll about gun control laws are going to differ from the poll results achieved by a publication with a predominantly Republican readership.

Instead of focusing on why polls are irrelevant due to ease of manipulation, I’m going to focus on an even lower level assumption made by people who cite polls: that a majority is right. Take it away, Mises!

Stating that the majority supports a law is irrelevant because there is no inherent wisdom in the majority. For example, if a majority favored a law that required the first born son of every family to be sacrificed to Beelzebub, would you agree that a law requiring that be passed? I’m guessing most people wouldn’t because it’s an awful idea. I’m also guessing that some proponent of democracy will dismiss my example and by extent my argument as being ridiculous, which it is because I chosen it specifically to illustrate my point in the most hyperbolic manner possible. To appease those individuals though, I will present a more realistic example.

Let’s say a few individuals own businesses in a poor neighborhood. The majority of people living in the town decide that they want to revitalize that neighborhood. To accomplish this they demand that the city government pass a new property tax to raise funds for revitalization efforts. Interestingly enough, the demanded property tax is high enough that it would force the poor businesses in that neighborhood to close shop. Should the will of the majority be followed even though it’s obvious that their idea of revitalizing the neighborhood is to use the city’s tax code to run poor individuals out of town?

The premise of democracy, that the will of a majority should become the policy of the State, is flawed at its very foundation because it necessarily assumes that what a majority wants is correct. This is why I dismiss arguments based on the will of a majority outright. Saying that a majority supports something is no different than saying that you personally support something. Saying that you or a majority support something isn’t an argument in support of that thing, it’s merely an expression of personal preference. And, unfortunately for you, I don’t give a shit about your personal preference.

Private Gun Registries

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Gun control advocates haven’t had as much success politically as they had hoped. While a few states took measures to punish gun owners who did nothing wrong, the federal and most state governments left well enough alone. However, politics is just one way to forward your agenda. Some gun control advocates, the ones in actual positions of influence, are looking into implementing a private solution:

The financial companies have explored creating a new credit-card code for firearms dealers, similar to how they code restaurants, or department stores, according to people familiar with the matter. Another idea would require merchants to share information about specific firearm products consumers are buying, some of the people said.

Such data could allow banks to restrict purchases at certain businesses or monitor them. The talks, which are informal and might not lead to any action, have occurred against the backdrop of the national debate around guns in the wake of the Parkland, Fla., high-school shooting, which left 17 dead.

While the article notes that such a mechanism could be used to restrict gun purchases, it could also be used to establish a private registry.

A national gun registry has been at the top of the gun control advocates’ wish list. They know that confiscating firearms in the future would be far easier if gun owners were known to the State. But the politicians have so far been wary of implementing such a registry. If, on the other hand, financial institutions tracked which of their customers made firearm purchases, they would possess a de facto registry. Moreover, it would likely be a registry accessible to the federal government since it could subpoena the information.

Admittedly, this kind of registry would be easy enough to avoid by just paying cash for firearms. But such a strategy would only work if cash remained legal tender, which is something government busybodies are working to change.

Written by Christopher Burg

May 2nd, 2018 at 11:00 am

Misplacing Firearms, Ammunition, and Explosives

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Civilians cannot be trusted with firearms and ammunition, only responsible and accountable government agencies can be:

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) does not have the best reputation vis-à-vis guns, and a new internal audit finds the agency has a record of carelessness with its own weapons.

Though the ATF does not lose guns at the rate it once did, it had “26 instances of lost, stolen, or missing firearms” in the fiscal years 2014 to 2017, and at least one of those weapons is known to have been used in commission of a crime. Some of these guns were lost in diners or on the Washington Metro system. One was discovered by an agent’s neighbor, who found it sitting on the roof of the agent’s car.

Perhaps more troubling given the sheer scale of the problem is ATF’s missing ammunition. The report found “several significant deficiencies related to tracking and inventory of ammunition. For example, ammunition tracking records were understated by almost 31,000 rounds at the 13 sites we audited.” Extrapolated across the agency’s 275 offices, that comes out to about 650,000 missing rounds. Explosives were also not correctly inventoried in some offices and may be lost or stolen as well.

26 lost firearms, 650,000 missing rounds of ammunition, and a probability that some explosives were lost? So responsible!

This story is a good reminder that government agents aren’t the most responsible individuals. And why should anybody expect them to be? They’re not handling their own gear, they’re handling gear that was paid for by tax payers. If they lose or damage something, tax payers will be forced to buy a replacement. Furthermore, irresponsible government agents are seldom punished for their irresponsibility. If they lose or damage something, not only will they receive a replacement courtesy of the tax payers, but they also won’t be reprimanded in any meaningful way.

The findings of this report aren’t unique. Every year we see reports about government agents losing equipment. So why do statists continue to believe that the government is more responsible and trustworthy than civilians? I’m left to believe that it’s due to a gold-medal-worthy mental gymnastics performance. There is no way that somebody could comprehend this report and conclude that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives is more trustworthy with firearms and ammunition than the average civilian.

Effective Protesting

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The Vermont legislature recently decided that its subjects no longer deserve the privilege of owning standard capacity magazines. While the subjects were unable to convince many of their rulers to not take away their privilege, they did throw one hell of a protest:

Protesters were giving away 1,200 30-round magazines. The legislation would ban high-capacity magazines and rapid-fire devices known as bump stocks, in addition to raising the legal age. It also would expand background checks for private gun sales.

Political protests in modern times tend to be worthless outside of creating some public relations. This is because most protests don’t involve any meaningful action. However, this protest was effective because it not only involved holding signs and yelling but also involved the action of distributing the soon to be prohibited items. Now more standard capacity magazines are in the hands of the subjects of Vermont, which directly violated the law approved by the legislature.

Written by Christopher Burg

April 3rd, 2018 at 10:00 am