Monday, April 30, 2007

Snore, Nod...

I mean, how could I have misplaced a Fowler/Young .22 scope? I never misplace anything...well, not for long, anyway. I've got this Ruger 10/22 Heavy Barrel Target that I'm supposed to shoot in California at the Ruger Rimfire Challenge this weekend, scope...sigh.

I've got a ratty Simmons 4X I can scavenge, may an old Tasco Pro-Point II if I can smack it on the side of hte bench and get it working again. One or the other will work, being as I don't have another choices. I only hope I can sight the thing in before I leave for the match. Both my Tactical Solutions Ruger pistol and my S&W M41 are at least sighted in, more or less. I guess that's something.

Hopefully, there'll be more time at the range now that it has stopped least for a little while. Not much you can do when the range appears swallowed up by a glacier.

Meetings all day tomorrow with premium video platform suppliers as we start planning to take DOWN RANGE to the next level. Also finalizing the plans for re-editing SG and COWBOYS.

Hands definitely full....

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Stephen Hunter on Virginia Tech

It has been one of those awful cartoon mornings — the macaws throwing the remnants of their breakfast, in this case soybean hulls, to Alf the Wonder Beagle, who wolfs 'em down and promptly throws up while Pokey-san the cat stalks Ripley, my grey parrot, like a scene from Tweety and Sylvester...heaven help the poor cat if he ever succeeds in catching Rip! Yes, my Sweetie is getting a sleep-in day!

I need a whip.

Meanwhile, here's a fascinating thought piece from our friend Stephen Hunter, writing in the Washington Post on the "cinematic" elements of Cho's rampage. Steve, of course, won a Pulitzer Prize for his movie criticism a couple of years ago and is arguably the world's greatest living authority on violence in the cinema. It's also interesting to note that I wasn't the only person who, upon seeing the first picture from Cho's NBC Secret Stash, thought, "good's Jeffrey Chow!"
[John] Woo pioneered postures with guns not seen in movies until that time (discounting cornball pre-World War II westerns). He was the first modern filmmaker (though there was Don Siegel's "Madigan" of 1968) to embrace the stylistic advantages of putting a gun in both hands of his hero, which became almost his signature. So when you see any of the famous photos of Cho with his arms outstretched and a gun in each hand, you cannot help but think, if you've seen any of them, of the Hong Kong gangster movies and the super-cool Chow.

But it goes even further than the resemblance between the photos of the blasphemy and the movies of the '80s. In at least three regards, Cho's activities so closely reflect the Woo oeuvre that it seems somewhat fair to conclude that in his last moments, before he blew his brains out, he was shooting a John Woo movie in his head.

First is the peculiar nature of the gun violence. Cho, it seems, wasn't a sniper, a marksman. He wasn't shooting carefully, at a distance. He wasn't, one can assume, aiming. He was shooting very much like Chow in the Woo pictures, with a gun in each hand, as witnesses state, up close, very fast. Woo saw gunfights in musical terms: His primary conceit was the shootout as dance number, with great attention paid to choreography, the movement of both actors within the frame. He loved to send his shooters flying through the air in surprising ways, far more poetically than in any real-life scenario. He frequently diverted to slow motion and he specialized in shooting not merely to kill, but to riddle -- his shooters often blast their opponents five and six times. Perhaps all that was at play in Cho's mind as well.

But it gets stranger: The first gunfight in Woo's most famous movie, "The Killer," is an almost eerie anticipation of the Cho attack. Chow's professional assassin moves stealthily down a corridor, approaches a door, knocks. Once it is opened, he dispatches the opener, then steps in to confront seated human figures. He darts among them, a gun in each hand, blazing away as they rise and flee. They're playing cards, not sitting in a classroom, and the setting is a nightclub backroom, not a school. But the kinetics of the remarkable encounter are strikingly similar to what must have happened Monday.
One thing you can always depend on from Steve is that he will make you think, reconsider the reality you were previously so sure of. I suspect I will never be able to watch The Killer — which happens to be one of my favorite movies of all time — again without seeing the echoes of Cho's rampage.

Friday, April 27, 2007

1984...Knocking on Your Door...Will You Let It Come...

This amazing op-ed has been circulating for a few days. It's from Dan Simpson, allegedly a retired diplomat and a member of the editorial boards of the Toledo OH Blade and the Pittsburg PA Post-Cazette. As the QANDO Blog notes, it's a wet dream for gun banners. Pay attention, kids; this is what's behind all that "sensible gun law" crap:
Now, how would one disarm the American population? First of all, federal or state laws would need to make it a crime punishable by a $1,000 fine and one year in prison per weapon to possess a firearm. The population would then be given three months to turn in their guns, without penalty.

Hunters would be able to deposit their hunting weapons in a centrally located arsenal, heavily guarded, from which they would be able to withdraw them each hunting season upon presentation of a valid hunting license. The weapons would be required to be redeposited at the end of the season on pain of arrest. When hunters submit a request for their weapons, federal, state, and local checks would be made to establish that they had not been convicted of a violent crime since the last time they withdrew their weapons. In the process, arsenal staff would take at least a quick look at each hunter to try to affirm that he was not obviously unhinged.
It would have to be the case that the term "hunting weapon" did not include anti-tank ordnance, assault weapons, rocket-propelled grenade launchers, or other weapons of war.

All antique or interesting non-hunting weapons would be required to be delivered to a local or regional museum, also to be under strict 24-hour-a-day guard. There they would be on display, if the owner desired, as part of an interesting exhibit of antique American weapons, as family heirlooms from proud wars past or as part of collections.

Gun dealers could continue their work, selling hunting and antique firearms. They would be required to maintain very tight inventories. Any gun sold would be delivered immediately by the dealer to the nearest arsenal or the museum, not to the buyer.

The disarmament process would begin after the initial three-month amnesty. Special squads of police would be formed and trained to carry out the work. Then, on a random basis to permit no advance warning, city blocks and stretches of suburban and rural areas would be cordoned off and searches carried out in every business, dwelling, and empty building. All firearms would be seized. The owners of weapons found in the searches would be prosecuted: $1,000 and one year in prison for each firearm.

Clearly, since such sweeps could not take place all across the country at the same time. But fairly quickly there would begin to be gun-swept, gun-free areas where there should be no firearms. If there were, those carrying them would be subject to quick confiscation and prosecution. On the streets it would be a question of stop-and-search of anyone, even grandma with her walker, with the same penalties for "carrying."
Sweet, isn't it? This is the real deal, what the weasels really want to do to us. Can you spell GESTAPO? Read Eugene Volokh's take on this, which concludes, "Oh, and don't forget: No-one is trying to take away your guns; people's concerns about that are just a "gun lobby ... bogeyman."

It's tempting to send Mr. Simpson a copy of Unintended Consequences. Or perhaps explain to him the derivation of the phrase Molon Lave...naw...he wouldn't get it. Simpson's thoughts are the core beliefs of the antigun movement. This is what we're fighting...

What Happens When You Do Carry a Gun on Campus?

Well, if you're a student at the renowned drinking-and-puking school of the University of Colorado in the People's Republic of Boulder, you get tagged with three felonies. From the Boulder Daily Camera:
A University of Colorado freshman arrested last week after police found a cache of weapons and ammunition in his dorm room was formally charged Wednesday with three felonies and one misdemeanor.

But an attorney representing Matthew Furnish said the student brought the weapons to the campus to go target-shooting with friends.

"This is not a Virginia Tech situation," said attorney Scott Robinson. "This is a personable, articulate young man with lots of friends."

Furnish, 19, couldn't store all his weapons with the police department because he'd been told space was limited, Robinson said after the charging hearing.

"They don't have acres of lockers; space is tight," he said.

But CU police said they don't turn away students who live in the dorms and want to store guns in the department's weapons cabinet — even if the space is full, said Cmdr. Brad Wiesley.
Gosh, I'll bet there's never been a case in the whole history of higher education where kampus kops lied to cover their own asses, has there? CU also suspended Furnish and banned him from campus — where he lives and eats.

This is a travesty. The shotgun was broken down, the handgun had a trigger lock and the ammo was stored separately. On the say of the VT shootings, Furnish had made prearrangements to head to the range after class. Yes, he made a mistake in storing the guns in his room, given that Boulder borders on the hysterical when it comes to guns, but keep in mind that CU is best known as a party school with an annual beer riot, where students who want beer beer beer set counches and mattresses on fire and dance in the street while the kampus kops studiously study their navels. Luckily, Boulder banned burnable outdoor furniture, goign straight to the heart of the problem.

It's a school with such a widespread drinking problem that new students are required to take a course in Alcohol Education. As the Cheap Seats blog says:
What other school would have a sex scandal, a while male political correctness "scandal", a financial mismanagement scandal, and a plagiarizing, fake Native American, professor speaking ill of the dead scandal all within the span of a year.
So CU has decided to cowboy up and fall on one solitary student...what it shows is that the University is an even bigger joke than most people in Boulder already think it is. What a waste of real estate!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Four Myths of Gun Control

Nice piece from Jay Ambrose. Check it out:
Gun-control advocates snicker at what gun libertarians say - that if you outlaw guns, only outlaws will have guns, and that it's not guns that kill people, but people who kill people. But these slogans - while obvious simplifications, as all such slogans are - have a huge advantage over the largely uninformed, morally superior rantings of many of the loudest, most-in-your-face gun-control advocates. Though leaving out some nuances and qualifications, they are fundamentally true.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The Small Penis Manifesto

Well, after noted urologist Bill Maher revealed on Jay Leno last night that the reason we have no national discussion on gun control is that gun owners, "have small penises," I for one whipped out a ruler.

Unfortunately, it was a metal ruler...and very VERY cold...apparently I DO have a small penis! Shriveled, too. HMMMMMM, maybe if I sold a Glock or two I would magically morph into LL Cool J...whoops, he once admitted he had some "antique" maybe from 1983. If I get rid of a loooooooooooooong gun, would that work better? I mean, is it caliber or size? Getting rid of a .32 snubbie hardly seems worth the effort. OTOH, a .500 Magnum...I'm going to have to put some thought into this...

Seriously, Maher has always been a screaming knee-jerk, but I mention the Wee Wee Statement to point out how seriously wide the divide is between the two sides. Here's some more guns = Mr. Willie talk, slightly more sophisticated but the same song. You have to subscribe to read the article by Robert Jay Lifton in the Chronicle of Higher Education, but you can get the entire text for nothing (preferable) on The High Road:
Indeed, I would claim that a gun is not just a lethal device but a psychological actor in this terrible drama. Guns and ammunition were at the heart of Seung-Hui Cho's elaborate orchestration of the event and of his Rambo-like self-presentation to the world. When you look at those pictures, you understand how a gun can merge so fully with a person that a man who makes regular use of it could (in the historical West and in Hollywood) become known as a "gun."
HELL-O RJ...thump...thump...thump...anything going in in that ole cantalope of yours? Maybe you should stick to penetrating analysis of American Idol voting patterns, or perhaps casting the entrails of liberals.

There has always been an interesting transference issue in the whole gun control debate — "I don't believe that I can control my temper, so it's important that you don't have a gun;" "I don't believe that I could respond correctly in a mass shooting, so it's important that you don't have the means to respond," etc.

The good news is that Rosie O'Donnell is leaving The View in June for part or parts unknown. I suppose it's too much to hope that she'll turn herself in at a tuna cannery to be rendered into canned white albacore. She's probably going to be Homegirl Hillary "Mama's Little Baby Loves Short'nin Short'nin" Clinton's VP...

Maybe there's yet hope for Mr. Willie! Gotta go nappy now!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Light Blogging...

...sorry! Picked up some weird lung bug in St. Louis — what I get for not visiting the Arch — and am playing fun with inhalers and generally feeling sorry for myself.

Anticipate survival...

Monday, April 23, 2007

An iPod and an AK-47...

...what's left? Chips? This pix, courtesy Wired through InstaPundit, is a Mursi tribesman in Southern Ethiopia. Google says they're a surly bunch, and who wouldn't be with those pancakes in their lips. Sort of a really bad day at IHOP. I prefer to believe this tribesperson is listening to the DOWN RANGE podcast and getting ready to kill and eat the photographer...maybe I should start including recipes...

Sunday, April 22, 2007

My Letter to the Denver Post...

...regarding the much-publicized LA Times op-ed from James Alan Fox, reprinted in the Post this AM:
What accounts for the increase [in mass killings]? Is it possible that man (and yes, 95% of all mass murderers are men, who tend to be far more comfortable and better trained in using firearms) has simply grown more evil and bloodthirsty since 1966 than during the previous millenniums of human existence?

Of course not. But several changes have taken place that have made such incidents more common.

One is the change in the potency of weaponry. Before 1966 the best weapons available to most would-be killers were pistols, rifles, maybe a shotgun. Today, semiautomatics are all too easily accessible…

Dear Mr. Moore;

I cannot comment on Professor Fox’s credentials as an expert on killings, but I am eminently qualified to address his understanding of firearms, and it is profoundly incorrect. While the mantra of “increased potency of modern weapons” has been a talking point of the antigun movement for decades, it simply doesn’t hold up to even the most casual scrutiny, or even an evening watching the History Channel.

Modern weapons are no more “potent” or capable of “greatly increased firepower” than they have been for most of the 20th Century. And, in fact, the level of powerful weapons available to the civilian market has actually decreased.

Further, the word “semiautomatic” is not a noun that defines not a separate class of weapons, but rather an adjective that describes the way a pistol, rifle or shotgun operates. Semiautomatic firearms — that is, a firearm that, through recoil or gas, recocks itself for the next shot after a shot is fired — have been readily available since Hiram Percy Maxim invented the modern machinegun in 1883. I have fired so-called “Broomhandle” Mausers — named because their grips resembles, surprise, a broomhandle — built in the 1890s, and they are every bit as efficient as a modern Glock. And yes, they fire every time you pull the trigger and can be reloaded very quickly through what is called a “stripper clip” system. Young Winston Chuchill used a Broomhandle Mauser fighting the Dervishes in the closing years of the 19th Century.

What we think of as the modern magazine-fed semiauto pistol in America can be traced to legendary arms designer John Browning in the late 1800s. In fact, the most popular semiauto pistol in America today is the 1911 “Government Model” Colt .45 ACP and its clones, designed by Browning in the early years of the 20th Century and adopted by the U.S. military in 1911. This is exactly the same gun that U.S. soldiers carried in WW1 and WW2.

The 1911 .45 ACP is also the current issue firearm for the FBI Hostage Rescue Team, Recon Marines, LA SWAT and dozens of other major urban police special response teams, as well as the weapon of choice for numerous of our special operations warriors. So, if we live in an age of greatly increased firepower and weapons’ potency, why do our most elite law enforcement officers and military teams insist on a handgun and cartridge designed for the most part by 1907?

After WW1, a flood of battle weapons — not civilian versions of military weapons, but the actual firearms used in the trenches —were readily available, including full-auto battle rifles like the BAR and the full-auto Thompson submachinegun. Full-auto weapons were heavily regulated in 1934 and remain so today…a “machine gun,” “submachinegun” or an “assault rifle” are by definition fully automatic weapons, that is, with one pull of the trigger the gun fires until it runs out of bullets.

Following WW2, numerous military pistols and rifles and civilian versions (that is, versions that had been converted from full-auto to semiauto-only fire) of battle rifles and carbines were readily available in the civilian market, including by mail order until 1968. A person could even buy antitank cannons, and their ammunition, through the mail, and at dirt cheap prices even by the standards of the times.

To give you some kind of perspective, I grew up in the 1950s and 1960s in Tennessee. My father served in the Pacific in WW2, and his gunrack (not safes back then) included a Walther P38 9mm semiauto magazine-fed pistol (essentially the great grandfather of the current Beretta M9 9mm U.S. military pistol), the 1911A1 .45 ACP semiauto magazine-fed pistol he carried in the war, an M1 Carbine military short rifle converted to semiauto including a number of 15-round and 30-round magazines for that carbine and a semiauto M1Garand in the powerful 30/06 caliber, the gun described by General George S. Patton as, “The greatest battle implement ever devised.”

While there are certainly more varieties of firearms today — just as there are more varieties of pasta and toothpaste — the “greater availability” of “more potent weapons” is simply not true. The biggest difference in today’s firearms as opposed to those in my father’s or my grandfather’s time is that today’s guns look scarier. rifles and black pistols with distinct military overtones.

We may say as many times as we wish that racing stripes, a hood scoop and wide tires make a family sedan into a NASCAR stocker, but that does not make it true — you will not see your Taurus at Talladega.

“Greater availability?” Nonsense. In years past, when you weren’t ordering antitank cannons through the mail, you could get guns and ammunition — including many of the semiautomatic guns hanging on my father’s gunrack — at the local hardware store, no questions asked. Now I go through a state/federal check for every gun I purchase; as a CCW holder in Colorado, I have allowed a level of intrusion in my life that would cause some people to blanche. I have seen my police file, and, as the officer who showed it to me noted, it is far thicker than that of many career felons.

Just because an antigun advocacy group issues a set of “talking points” doesn’t make them true. I have written in the AMERICAN JOURNALISM REVIEW and other places that much of the mainstream media allows a level of inaccuracy about firearms and firearms issues that would be totally unacceptable on any other “beat.” That includes a willingness to take antigun advocacy material at face value, again, something that is anathema in other areas of journalism.

We owe it to both sides of the debate to deal in facts rather than — inaccurate — suppositions, and that includes both in the news sections and in op-ed columns…as the canon of ethics for professional journalism requires.

I recall that somewhere in my first month as a newspaper reporter, approximately 100 years ago, I took material from an advocacy group and wove it into a news story, because it was flashy and it agreed with my preconceived notions. I also recall standing in the editor’s office almost reduced to tears while the editor and the managing editor tore into me at a level that is no longer acceptable. But I learned, and that’s all I ask of you, sir.

By way of background, I am the host and producer of the most successful shooting show on television, SHOOTING GALLERY, on the Outdoor Channel, presently in its 7th season. I also produce DOWN RANGE TELEVISION ( on the Internet, a weekly podcast on firearms issues and host the Michael Bane Blog ( For 5 years I ran the National Shooting Sports Foundations’ Media Education Project, a program I conceived, where we worked with the national media to dispel firearms myths and inaccuracies. We worked with the networks, the major national newspapers, the newsweeklies, CNN, etc., including taking many journalists to the range and teaching them to shoot. I have also worked with such varied groups as the Hollywood director and stunt communities and the Mystery Writers of America on firearms issues.

Thank you,

Michael Bane

Okay...I've used up my share of "nice" for the rest of the month!

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Great Analysis from WSJ

Here's an excellent summation of the current situation from the WSJ's today:
Yes, the usual suspects have attempted to use the murder spree on campus as evidence of the danger of guns in America. But as unlikely a combination of leaders from Harry Reid to George Bush has been as one in warning we should avoid a "rush to judgment" in the wake of the killings.

That's progress of a sort, even if the Democrats' abandonment of the issue flows more from political calculation than principle. Political calculation, after all, is based on something beyond mere politics. The Democratic Party may have decided that gun control became a political liability in the 1994 and 2000 elections, but that doesn't go far toward explaining why that is so.

First, as we noted earlier this week, what happened in Blacksburg was evidence more than anything of the fact that there are sick and evil people in the world willing to do harm to others for no earthly reason. Pushing much beyond that point is political opportunism.

But over the past decade and a half, evidence of another sort has been accumulating. Violent-crime rates peaked in 1991, according to the Justice Department, and have fallen steeply since. Over the same period, gun-control laws in many states have been relaxed. Correlation does not equal causation, but it does make it difficult to argue that greater legal access to guns drives up levels of violent crime.
It's interesting to me that the only voices harping for gun control are the mainstream media (MSM). For years the overt bias of the MSM toward guns has been hidden behind the Democrats apparently endless crusade. Now that the Dems are silent, the MSM is exposed for what it has been all along, the primary driver for gun control in America...I have said this before...there was never a "public outcry" for gun control. Instead, there was a media elite who were in bed with urban Dem politicians. With the Dems standing down, the MSM are revealed as the little man behind the curtain.

I urge you to read this brilliant essay from Jonah Goldberg at NRO, titled "Emotional Vampirism:"
I’m sick over the Virginia Tech story. But I’m sickened of the Virginia Tech “story.”

That is, it’s at moments like this — the “aftermath” stage of some horrible event — when the press, particularly television news networks, are most proud of themselves that I find them the most repellent.
Never doubt for one minute that far too many of the MSM are our sworn blood enemies. Even my Sweetie has been appalled at the amazingly biased coverage...for example, the media meticulously discussing the lack of a "waiting period" in Virginia while failing to mention that the psychotic waited more than 30 days to purchase his second firearm, or the MSM talking about magazine capacity while overlooking the little fact that the psychotic reloaded — and since no one was fighting back, he could have used a single shot pistol and just kept reloading!

Check out this update of MSM spin, lies and general misinformation compiled by Confederate Yankee:
This tragedy at Virginia Tech is horrible, but the reporting of it thus far is showing us either the professional media is a bunch of bumbling incompetents, or are agenda-driven deceivers.

I'm not sure which possibility frightens me the most.

Finally! A Solution that Works!

From the Yale Daily News, via Instapundit:
In the wake of Monday’s massacre at Virginia Tech in which a student killed 32 people, Dean of Student Affairs Betty Trachtenberg has limited the use of stage weapons in theatrical productions.

Students involved in this weekend’s production of “Red Noses” said they first learned of the new rules on Thursday morning, the same day the show was slated to open. They were subsequently forced to alter many of the scenes by swapping more realistic-looking stage swords for wooden ones, a change that many students said was neither a necessary nor a useful response to the tragedy at Virginia Tech.
When stage swords are outlawed, only outlaws...never mind...

You can truly see the value, though, of an Ivy league education...diversity of stupidity!

A Strange Corporeal Disconnect

It's Saturday morning, the first day off I've had in three weeks. That means I'll probably spend the day wandering around trying to figure out what I'm supposed to do. I had planned to sleep late, but my head had other ideas...the next "channel" of DOWN RANGE TV, COWBOY TV, is getting ready to go up, with work moving forward on BLACK RIFLE TV. Marshal and I are in the process of breaking DR into specific channels because it just makes sense.

At the same time we're moving forward on our relationship with our new partner — expect an formal announcement week, but don't be surprized if its, who are great guys to work with and on whose site I have spent far too much money over the years!

Also expect an announcement within the month that DOWN RANGE is moving to a vastly expanded super-high-quality video platform...the cutting edge keeps moving, and our plan is to stay just a little ahead!

In upcoming DR videos, I plan to complete the next six segments of CCW Demystified this summer, as well as a bunch of combat shotgun and black rifle stuff. I've also started wheels turning to — legally! — build a replica of the Ithaca Auto & Burglar sawed-off shotgun, so I can take you through the whole NFA process step by step and show what's involved. Black rifle wise, I'll be looking at drop-in trigger units, a comparison of red-dot optics, a shake-out tour of the SIG 556, one of the Stag Arms rifles and the TNH FS2000 bullpup.

More and more instructors and trainers are querying us about getting on DR. Our policy is that the site is open to all trainers, because I want it to be a resource for people who are shopping for trainers. Expect to see a huge selection of short-form videos coming from another one of our partners, Paladin Press, within the next few weeks.

BTW, I've finally almost finished the audio sound studio in my office for the podcasts, which are going great guns. I'm getting professional quality sound after only four interface boxes, a stack of microphones, etc. etc. Audio is the only think I've seen weirder than the Internet...NOTHING works the way it supposed to work! Next project is to finish hanging lights in the gun room in the basement to make it easy to film in.

On the SHOOTING GALLERY and COWBOYS front, I'm going to start working on the editing of "SG and COWBOYS "Classics" this month in California. I'm going to pull out the best shows and recut them, add some new information and new ins and outs. We should be back in full-scale production on both shows for 2008 in late summer, in time for the Steel Challenge. I've been working on the list of 2008 shows, and I guarantee you they will blow you away...I look at the list and I think, "Wow! I'd like to see that stuff!" You'll be AMAZED at the plans we have for the Steel Challenge this year!

Of course, I need a clone. I once had a clone...her name was Jennifer Haigh, and she's now a Famous Novelist. I read an interview she did years ago, where she was asked (if I remember correctly) if writing novels was the hardest job she'd ever done. No, she said; she once worked for a writer where she was expected to read his mind. She did, too.

Anyhow, I had a strange out-of-body experience yesterday. I finally got to the movies to see 300, which was indeed magnificent...and haunting after the events of last week. After two hours sunk in Sparta, I walked across the street to the mall to catch up with my Sweetie, who has declared a general moratorium on beheadings. So I'm standing in the middle of the mall waiting, and I suddenly felt profoundly and utterly out of place, lost. It was as jarring a sense of dislocation as I've ever felt, much more so than in any of the many foreign countries I've visited. The 9-mil felt like a lead weight on my belt, and I envisioned a big flashing neon sign over my head with an arrow pointing downward, flashing, "ALIEN!" off and on. It took me a minute or so to reboot, but the strangeness hung with me for the rest of the evening. I suppose I could quote Heinlein or Vonnegut here, but I guess I'll pass. Old age, movie mayhem and afternoon sushi can be a deadly combination!

Maybe I should work my way up to one day a week off...

BTW BTW, it's warn enough to bicycle!!! Now, where are my pedals?

Friday, April 20, 2007

President Thompson Speaks Out!

Oh God, please let this man run for President — and win! Maybe a Fred Thompson/Condoleezza Rice about saving America! This from Thompson's blog commentaries:
Virginia, like 39 other states, allows citizens with training and legal permits to carry concealed weapons. That means that Virginians regularly sit in movie theaters and eat in restaurants among armed citizens. They walk, joke and rub shoulders everyday with people who responsibly carry firearms — and are far safer than they would be in San Francisco, Oakland, Detroit, Chicago, New York City, or Washington, D.C., where such permits are difficult or impossible to obtain.

The statistics are clear. Communities that recognize and grant Second Amendment rights to responsible adults have a significantly lower incidence of violent crime than those that do not. More to the point, incarcerated criminals tell criminologists that they consider local gun laws when they decide what sort of crime they will commit, and where they will do so.

A Wonderful, Powerful Post

From the great Peggy Noonan at the Wall Street Journal:
The last testament Cho sent to NBC seemed more clear evidence of mental illness--posing with his pistols, big tough gangsta gonna take you out. What is it evidence of when NBC News, a great pillar of the mainstream media, runs the videos and pictures on the nightly news? Brian Williams introduced the Cho collection as "what can only be described as a multi-media manifesto." But it can be described in other ways. "The self-serving meanderings of a crazy, self-indulgent narcissist" is one. But if you called it that, you couldn't lead with it. You couldn't rationalize the decision.

Such pictures are inspiring to the unstable. The minute you saw them, you probably thought what I did: We'll be seeing more of that.
Read the whole thing, by all means!

Only in America?

Let's take a look at the "successes" of those countries who have banned guns. This from TCS Daily via InstaPundit:
Major news outlets reported on April 18 about the shooting deaths of at least 19 gang members in Rio de Janeiro by rival gangs and police. These shootouts occurred despite Brazil's strict gun control laws.

Also in Wednesday's newspapers are reports about Tuesday's shooting death of the mayor of Nagasaki, Japan. Japan has some of the strictest anti-gun laws in the industrialized world.

In Scotland authorities are enacting knife control policies because violent crime has continued to climb (with knives as a weapon of choice) in the wake of the nation's gun bans. Should Americans speak contemptuously of Scotland's "blade and booze" culture?

Last November in Emsdetten, Germany, a teenager shot and wounded more than a dozen persons before killing himself. In 2002 in a school in Erfurt, Germany, a gunman killed 17 people and himself.

Five years ago I did research for an article on mass shootings. Here are a few of the headlines I came across:

"8 slain at council meeting"

"Teen wounds 5 in tech school"

"Suspected gang shooting leaves 4 dead, 2 injured"

"Man kills ex-bosses, principal, himself"

"Gunman kills self, 7 others"

The incidents these headlines describe occurred in France, the Netherlands, Japan, Germany and Italy, respectively. In the five years since that research, crime rates have continued to climb in many other countries with far stricter gun control laws than those in the United States.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

And Speaking of Whores...

...the media whores at the Christian Science Monitor, running against the trend, say support for gun control is rising. As their centerpiece, they quote a 2006 study from the rocket scientists at Hamilton College in Clinton, NY:
But quietly, American attitudes toward firearms have shifted. Gun ownership is at the lowest level in three decades, and support for the regulation of firearms, which is always been high, has reached a new peak, according to one new poll. Some of the biggest supporters of gun-control are teenagers and college students.

For instance, 88 percent of high school students polled by Hamilton College in 2006 supported a five-day waiting period for a hand-gun purchase. The reason, say researchers, is their own experience with guns.
Hmmm...I wonder if that's like the 200o Hamilton College study, funded by the antigun group Alliance for Justice:
About nine out of 10 high school students support such gun control measures as criminal background checks and mandatory trigger locks, according to a survey released in late August.

The same number of students said they favored requiring a safety course and a license to purchase a handgun. Ninety-six percent supported registering firearms when purchased so they could be traced, if “necessary,” said Dennis Gilbert, a sociology professor at Hamilton College in Clinton, New York, who designed the survey with his students.


The Alliance for Justice, an anti-gun coalition of advocacy groups, released the study as part of an anti-gun campaign. The poll, financed by the College’s Arthur Levitt Public Affairs Center, had an error margin of plus or minus three percentage points.
Here's a little bit of the Monitor's drivel...I wouldn't use this crap to line my parrot's cages!
The reason overwhelming support for gun control found in opinion polls has not translated into support for gun-control advocates during elections is that gun owners are more passionate about the issue than the general public, says Josh Sugarmann, executive director of the Violence Policy Center in Washington. "While there is public support on our side, the National Rifle Associations' hard-core supporters have the boots on the ground – which means they are the vocal minority that makes sure their voice is heard when their member in Congress comes home to their district."

He says the Virginia Tech shootings may cause gun-control supporters to become more engaged.

"Don't Hold Your Breath..."

More good news for us, this just posted on NEWSWEEK from Howard Fineman:
Gun Control? Don’t Hold Your Breath

The shooting spree in Virginia will trigger the usual round of calls for tighter restrictions on gun traffic. But politically, that dog likely won’t hunt, even now.

April 17, 2007 - I don’t know what I was thinking. It seemed to me that the gruesome tragedy at Virginia Tech might prompt a new wave of legislation—not just talk but legislation—to limit the sale of handguns in America. But a few calls and e-mails to people who know the politics of the issue led to a different conclusion: forget about it.

Whatever the rest of the world thinks, whatever Rosie O’Donnell thinks, whatever big city mayors, present and former, think—it remains unlikely that the murder of 32 innocents in Blacksburg will alter the basic guns-for-all equation of American life.
Read the whole thing — KNOW YOUR ENEMY!

New Talking Points...

The gun culture is girding for total war.

I want to give you some of the best talking points...everyone needs to read this material and get ready.

What the others side really wants, from Slate today:
Repeal the Second Amendment

The best way to reduce the odds of another blood bath like the one at Virginia Tech is to amend the Constitution and abolish the right to bear arms.

By Walter Shapiro
April 18, 2007 | WASHINGTON -- Fifteen unambiguous words are all that would be required to quell the American-as-apple-pie cycle of gun violence that has now tearfully enshrined Virginia Tech in the record book of mass murder. Here are the 15 words that would deliver a mortal wound to our bang-bang culture of death: "The second article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed."
The talking points on our side. First, from Eugene Volokh:
What Exactly Is the Reason Not To Allow Professors To Carry Guns?
Consider two scenarios:
1. An armed madman comes to a place and starts shooting people. None of the people who's around is armed.

2. An armed madman comes to a place and starts shooting people. Several (say, five) people in the vicinity are armed.

Which madman is more likely to be stopped quicker — the one who outguns everyone else 1-0, or the one who is outgunned 5-1?

If this weren't a madman but Jack Bauer — or even an average highly trained soldier — the five may well be unable to stop the one. But otherwise, the odds would seem to be more against the madman in situation 2 rather than 1, no?

No-one can prove anything, of course. Maybe the five would be the first to be shot. Maybe they'd run away. Maybe they wouldn't be around. Maybe they'd shoot and miss. Still, if you had to bet, which would you bet would be the worse scenario for the madman, and the better one for his victims?
From James Bowman in the National Review Online:
Heffer’s question could also be asked, I think, about the Virginia Tech students who fled as the Korean gunman, Cho Seung Hui, went on his homicidal rampage on their campus Monday — or who, like Jamal Albarghouti, instead of fleeing, took out their cell phones to record the sights and sounds of the massacre. “This is what this YouTube-Facebook-instant messaging generation does,” reported the Washington Post of Albarghouti’s exploit as if it were a matter for pride: “Witness. Record. Share.” And, as the Post might have added, not fight back.

It appears to have occurred to no one to do that. Or even to wonder whether or not it might have been desirable to do that. “You are one brave guy Jamal,” wrote someone on his Facebook site after his video had run on But the idea that any greater bravery than his might have been possible — the kind of bravery that could have saved lives by taking down the gunman earlier in his murderous career — is one that seems not to have been picked up on the LCDs of the YouTube-Facebook-instant-messaging generation.
From Mark Steyn, also in NRO:
Point one: They’re not “children.” The students at Virginia Tech were grown women and — if you’ll forgive the expression — men. They would be regarded as adults by any other society in the history of our planet. Granted, we live in a selectively infantilized culture where twentysomethings are “children” if they’re serving in the Third Infantry Division in Ramadi but grown-ups making rational choices if they drop to the broadloom in President Clinton’s Oval Office. Nonetheless, it’s deeply damaging to portray fit fully formed adults as children who need to be protected.

We should be raising them to understand that there will be moments in life when you need to protect yourself — and, in a “horrible” world, there may come moments when you have to choose between protecting yourself or others. It is a poor reflection on us that, in those first critical seconds where one has to make a decision, only an elderly Holocaust survivor, Professor Librescu, understood instinctively the obligation to act.
From Michelle Malkin:
There's no polite way or time to say it: American college and universities have become coddle industries. Big Nanny administrators oversee speech codes, segregrated dorms, politically correct academic departments, and designated "safe spaces" to protect students selectively from hurtful (conservative) opinions—while allowing mob rule for approved leftist positions (textbook case: Columbia University's anti-Minuteman Project protesters).

Instead of teaching students to defend their beliefs, American educators shield them from vigorous intellectual debate. Instead of encouraging autonomy, our higher institutions of learning stoke passivity and conflict-avoidance.

And as the erosion of intellectual self-defense goes, so goes the erosion of physical self-defense.
From Fox:
Virginia Tech Murders Gives GOP Candidates Chance to Prove Gun Rights Credentials

By Kelley Beaucar Vlahos
WASHINGTON — Forget sporting a hunting rifle and camouflage flak jacket -- Republican candidates wanting to prove their credibility with the gun rights lobby may have that opportunity as the Virginia Tech murders this week begin reviving a national debate over gun laws.

"(The Republican candidates) must appeal to folks like me to get my vote. I don't expect them to be calling for further gun control," said Jeff Soyer, who runs, a Web log popular with supporters of the Second Amendment guarantee for individuals to bear arms.

"Simply put," Soyer said, "there is no law that could be enacted that would have prevented this tragedy. You can't legislate against insanity."

While leading Democratic candidates like Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama did not raise the specter of gun control legislation in recent statements about the Virginia Tech tragedy, which ended in the deaths of 33 people on Monday, Republican sources, including the White House, have already waded into the thorny issue of gun rights.
There are things I can't tell you yet; the Dems are profoundly scared of stepping into this. And I believe one of the reasons is they're looking at a wholesale mobilization on our part. More later...

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The Pornography of Violence

How do you even begin to process what happened at Virginia Tech?

It's one of those horrific incidences that simply doesn't compute. A real-life Terminator strolls through a building like the movie Terminator walked through the LA police building, an invincible death dealer, lining people up against the wall and shooting them down with all the stress and drama of an afternoon plinking in front of a prairie dog town.

Except that in real-life, the Terminator isn't a late 21st Century cyborg...he's a 20-something college student with clinical depression and a crappy love life. He's not made of some magic metal that deflects bullets, with targeting computers and laser search-and-destroy machinery....he's a kid made of flesh and blood clothed in sweatshirt and jeans.

I don't have any answers for you. And maybe today isn't a day for answers, but a day for mourning the dead. And maybe a day for questions.

If monsters walk among us, do we create them?

Is a culture without shame, without responsibility, without honor, without consequences the place where we want to raise our children or where we want our parents to see their final days?

Do cameras, metal detectors, security guards, "gun-free zones," police sweeps, expanded government regulations make us safe or do they all simply blind us to the dangers that lurk of the darkness in men's hearts?

Are our lives so small and so worthless even to ourselves that we have decided we are not worth defending; that we can just "outsource" our protection to a university or a police department or a government?

Do we, can we, stand up?

I will not lie to you...the fight is upon us, and it will be the fight of our lives. I unconditionally believe in the inherent correctness,
the necessity, of our cause. Read the comments of Virginia Tech spokeman Larry Hincker when House Bill 1572, the Virginia bill which would have allowed Virginia college students to have their legal concealed carry guns on campus failed, "I'm sure the university community is appreciative of the General Assembly's actions because this will help parents, students, faculty and visitors feel safe on our campus." Then read the words of Bradford Wiles, a graduate student at Virginia Tech:
I would also like to point out that when I mentioned to a professor that I would feel safer with my gun, this is what she said to me, "I would feel safer if you had your gun."

I am qualified and capable of carrying a concealed handgun and urge you to work with me to allow my most basic right of self-defense, and eliminate my entrusting my safety and the safety of my classmates to the government.
The harsh reality is that the world is not a safe place, nor can it be rendered safe. When we choose "feeling safe" over accepting responsibility for our own safety, we step onto a path that is as old as human civilization itself, a path that is guaranteed — guaranteed! — to lead to disaster. Not "maybe;" not "sometime;" but always.

We are going to have to stand — you, me, all of us. And we are going to have to look the hard questions in the eyes.

But today we mourn the dead...and celebrate the life of a hero, Professor Liviu Librescu, the 76-year-old Holocaust survivor who died on Holocaust Remembrance Day saving his students. Professor Librescu blocked the doorway and eventually threw himself in front of the shooter, allowing his students to get away. I don't presume to know what was in the professor's mind in those moments, but I can't help believing that he knew what was outside his door, because he had heard that knocking before. And in that moment he knew he had to stand.

Can we do less?

Friday, April 13, 2007

NRA Day One Survival Tips!

Okey-dokey...made it through the first day of the NRA Show unscathed!

Today was SCHMOZE DAY, so I didn't get a chance to really look at stuff. Let me tell you, however, that it is WONDERFUL to meet so many SG & COWBOYS fans...I can't thank them enough!

I'll be signing at the OUTDOOR CHANNEL booth tomorrow at 1PM, so if you're in St. Louis, come hang out. I'll also be videoing for DOWN RANGE tomorrow (and hopefully have it up on Monday). I ran into John Ross, who has a coule of his totally cool Performance Center X-Frames here...I'm going to get a bunch of video on them tomorrow...especially since John mentioned a friend of his, a former Penthouse Pet, would be there to "model" the gun. Not to worry! I have lots of tape!

The most interesting thing is the 800-pound gorilla in the room, the Remington sale...that NO ONE is talking about. I'm going to go hang at Bushmaster tomorrow and then see if I can run down Tommy Milner from Remington for a podcast interview.

Finally caught up with Dwight Van Brunt from Kimber, who I've been meaning to talk to since SHOT. I'll get some video there tomorrow as well.

On a different subject, I've got to talk to Jim Shepherd, who pulled a big string, but rumors are flying that the Department of Agriculture is mortally embarrassed by USFS District Ranger Christine Walsh's antigun jihad and they want to make the pain go away. Always happy to help in that department! Plus, Col. Bob Brown went to the mattresses with the NRA legal people, demanding their help before USFS shuts all the Colorado forests to recreational shooting...signs look good for us, not so good for the Greenies! More as soon as I get details.


As a side note, I gotta get a DSA FAL .308...I can't control myself...I gotta order one tomorrow...really...really really...

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Books Are Those Heavy Things With Pages...

"I know what's in every book in every library in the world..."
"What's that?"

— Brother Dave Gardner

Ah yes, rejoice, dear hearts! I invoke the name of Brother Dave advisedly, on this day when the media is fraught with stories about...the media! Don Imus is the human incarnation of a slug; America is shocked to its core that an over-the-hill shock jock can't control his tongue. Thousands seek grief counseling...CNN goes 24/7 on how America, already one the ropes. is struggling to survive this latest assault...blah blah. Yeah, Imus is a jerk...q'uel surprise!

I mention Brother Dave because he is, I believe, the first person other than Richard Nixon to abruptly end his career on television, with less than 10 words on the Johnny Carson Show. If you never heard the story, don't expect me to tell it to you...the very though of having to deal with the Right Reverend Al Sharpton in any capacity fills me with roiling nausea. I would like to point out, however, that a full generation before Cheech and Chong, Brother Dave occasionally slipped a dope joke into one of his signature routines, The Motorcycle Story, whereas Charles and Miss Baby are in a juke joint:

"...let's blow this joint!"

"Naw man, pass it on to the waitress!"

I didn't get it when I was 12. Maybe I still don't...

In any case, I hope I've added a little culture to your dull gray Wednesday; now here's some news you can use! I haven't made fun of Katie Couric in a long time, largely because she's marginalized herself and her overpriced Manolo collection out of existance on the failing CBS Evening "people love it when you lose..." News... Well, CBS is having to apologize for their Million Dollar Baby. This from Newsweek:
CBS certainly got something different than it bargained for when it stole America’s Sweetheart from the “Today” show last year. Not only has Couric failed to draw her loyal fans to her new network: “CBS Evening News with Katie Couric” remains a distant third behind NBC and ABC. Now, Couric is embroiled in an embarrassing flap with The Wall Street Journal over plagiarism, the ultimate journalistic sin.
So they cribbed La Couric's "personal" essay on the library from the smart people at the Wall Street Journal. I'm not surprised that a personal essay on libraries and books from Katie Couric would send up red flags...let's face it...the morning teevee boys and girls can clearly recognize a book if they see one, but in the absence of an on/off switch, a wi-fi connection or a personal assistant who can read aloud, I'm not sure they totally understand how a book actually works. This, slightly embellished, from an interview with an author on the Today Show last week:
Interviewer: While I haven't actually read the book, I picked it up last night and I noticed that it was heavy...
Author: Yes, and in the first chapter...
Interviewer: VERY heavy [mugs to the audience], like a brick or my purse! So you just know there's lots of GOOD information in it...
Author: In Thomas Jefferson's early years...
Interviewer: And the COVER! It's so brightly colored and appealing! Not what you would expect in a book about old stuff and dead I was telling Matt...
Author: Jefferson's concepts shaped...
Interviewer: AS I WAS SAYING, I was telling's lucky they don't sell books by the pound, or no one could afford this one! [looks toward the audience and assumes THOUGHTFUL FACE] And so few people understand the effect The Jeffersons had on America! That was a funny funny show! [back to the author, who has passed out on the floor] Thank you for sharing with us! Next, did you know that cleaning toilet bowls can actually be fun? YEEECH! Thank heavens for domestic help!"

Monday, April 09, 2007

Enter NOW!

Remember that April 15 is Buy A Gun Day — hot pix courtesy the great Cowboy Blob Saloon and Shootin' Gallery, by the way!

If you can't buy a gun, we've got you covered!

You can get a great custom gun, but you've got to act quickly...the Custom Bruce Gray SIGARMS 1911 GSR giveaway on the DOWN RANGE site,, is coming down to the final mile. W're giving this puppy away Sunday, BUY A GUN DAY, at the NRA MEMBERS MEETING in St. Louis at the SIGARMS BOOTH!!! 11 there!

I haven't seen the Tactical Solutions/Leupold 10/22 that will be our next giveaway gun...the guys at Tactical Solutions wanted it to be a surprise, so it'll be on display at the Leupold booth...if you're going to be in St. Louis, CHECK IT OUT! I am, by the way, in the process of negotiating a giveaway gun that is going to KNOCK YOUR PROVERBIAL SOCKS OFF...stay tuned...

I also want to say I'm a little overcome by the response to today's first posting of our DOWN Ramge podcats on iTunes...hundreds of people had signed up by noon today...WOW! We may be onto something here. Seriously folks, thank you...I'll keep pushing until they make me stop!

If you're going to be at the NRA Show in St. Louis, definitely look me up...I'll be at the OUTDOOR CHANNEL booth from 1-2 PM each day signing autographs and cruising the floorthe rest of the time.

And check out Crazy Einar at Arthur's Hall, where he's listing the Ten Manliest Firearms. I might quibble a bot on the inclusion of Mosin-Nagent and the exclusion of the M1A, but it;s a cool list. Number One Manly Gun???

The Barrett .50 BMG...yeah man! Ronnie rocks!

Saturday, April 07, 2007

A Snowy Saturday...

...wher I spent most of the day trying to solve an audio problem on my podcasting set-up. Eventually, I got fed up with the whole thing, reconfingured my system for some different, older hardware and did the Monday podcast. Afterwards, of course, I discovered a loose microphone I'll do the podcast again tomorrow...sigh.

I haven't wanted to make it available on iTunes until I had the bugs worked out. Definitely by the Monday after the NRA Show next week!

Today I discovered that the Nederland Board of Trusties last week passed a genuine anti-Michael Non-Binding Resolution, coming down staunchly against recreational shooting because, well, because! Like guns are, you know, like loud, and, like, where we used to live in, like, San Francisco, like, the only noises we heard were sirens and the occasional scream and like gunshots are, like, scary.

I have to admit they did an excellent job of keeping everything hidden from me and my shooting buddies...god forbid the public should be present at a public meeting! Well, we'll deal with it...what goes around does tend to come around...especially for a ethically challenged new Ms. Mayor with political asperations!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

The Fear Industrial Complex

This from John Stossel at 20/20:
Here's another example. What do you think is more dangerous, a house with a pool or a house with a gun? When, for "20/20," I asked some kids, all said the house with the gun is more dangerous. I'm sure their parents would agree. Yet a child is 100 times more likely to die in a swimming pool than in a gun accident.

Parents don't know that partly because the media hate guns and gun accidents make bigger headlines. Ask yourself which incident would be more likely to be covered on TV.

Green Goes Black

The announcement Middle Man referenced in the previous post just hit the media, courtesy of the SHOOTING WIRE's Jim Shepherd, who actually sleeps with a bluetooth telephone attachment in his ear!

Cereberus Capital Partners, the new owners of black rifle powerhouse Bushmaster, have acquired Remington for a reported $370 million, with a closing in June. Here's the statement from Big Green:
Remington CEO Tommy Millner released a statement characterizing the transaction as "an acknowledgment of the Remington tradition, its strong brand, and the excellent products built over 191 years…"
This acquisition puts a period and an exclamation point on the industry turmoil since the L'Affaire du Zumbo. Bottom line is simple...the black rifles won. The largest hunting arms manufacturer in the world is now owned by the largest AR manufacturer in the country. Remington has been hammered in their law enforcement division for not having an AR product to accompany their premium tactical rifle line, and they've been increaingly frenetic in trying to solve that problem. They rolled out their pump patrol rifle, but it was barely a blip in the law enforcement avalanche from pump shotguns to semiauto carbines for patrol officers.

Bushmaster is the number one powerhouse in the booming black rifle market, and Cereberus' acquisitions has given the company the juice to kick it up a notch. Here's a couple of predictions that it doesn't exactly take a crystal ball to figure out:
Remington AR-15 ASAP...yesterday, if possible.
• A line of Green ARs aimed straight at the hunting market. Bushmaster, in conjunction with Hornady, just rolled out their .450 Bushmaster cartridge for the AR, .45/70-plus ballistics in a 9-round mag capacity backage. There have been a bunch of .45-almost .50 caliber ARs, but none with the combined marketing punch of Hornady, Bushmaster and now Remngton behind it.
• The rehabilitation and rebirth of Jim Zumbo, back with Big Green. er, Big Greenish Black. He's the ideal spokesperson...he's personally gone through what Remington just went through on a corporate level!
• A "streamlining" of Big Green's voluminous rifle now takes a computer and a 13-year-old savant with a huge whiteboard to sift through the Remington's offerings. I'm sure it hasn't gone unnoticed to Cereberus execs that Kimber has done a neat job of clipping off the super-premium upside of the market while Ruger and Savage have run rampant through the mid/lower end. Big Green has to get a grip on its product lines!
Charge is the only constant!

UPDATE: Here's the full text of the Remington statement as filed with the SEC (courtesy JJ...thanks for the link!).

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Colt Colt Colt NYET!

Colt is not for sale!

Colt has never been for sale!

No one is interested in buying Colt!

No one is even interested in thinking about buying Colt!

Read my lips!

All those rumors about sealed bids being delivered to the Colt offices by last week were nothing more than disinformation put out by Nancy Pelosi frim Syria! There are no sealed bids, because there are no bidders!

But if there were any sealed bids, placed by non-existant bidders, well, I'd probably be the first to blurt out when the bids are opened. Which they won't be. Because there are no bids. No bidders. Nothing...Harvey, I'll take my scotch and soda now...and for heaven sake, Harvey, don't ask me anything else about that damned Pony! There's only so much crap I'll take from an invisible rabbit!

Wednesday Morning Blood-Boiler

Ah liberals, what do they use for brains?

I've mentioned Jim Spencer, the DENVER POST's Official Bleeding Heart, and I generally try to avoid his columns, which usually exhibit the keen insight and incisivie intelligence of a Kristy Swanson movie. This morning, in a fit of weakness, I slipped up. Since it gave me indigestion, I thought I'd give you all indigestion as well. Here's today's column...paging the Pulitzer Prize Committee!
Law allows readin', writin' and rifle
By Jim Spencer

According to the Jan. 23 report, the student's pickup held a 7mm rifle, a 7mm bullet, hundreds of rounds of .22-caliber ammunition and eight cans of beer.

Holyoke school Superintendent Stephen Bohrer said the truck was parked 150 feet from the front door of Holyoke Junior-Senior High and 50 feet from two side doors.

That, Bohrer said, was why a drug-sniffing dog from a private security firm stopped at the truck.

To signal something wrong.

More wrong than you might think.

The truck full of bullets and beer broke no laws because it was not parked on school property and because the student who drove it was 18, said Holyoke police Sgt. Doug Bergstrom, who investigated.

Bergstrom claimed there were no more than 20 .22-caliber bullets in the car. A report by Joe DiSalvo, president of Interquest Detection Canines, says he found six full or partially full boxes of bullets under the front seat.

"I stand by my report," DiSalvo said.

Legally, it doesn't matter. The way Colorado law works, the student, a senior at Holyoke, could have had 1,000 bullets.

"This student was 18," Bergstrom said. "He's parked on public property. He's 18, so he's allowed to have a rifle. We couldn't place him with the beer. I did contact a deputy district attorney. She said there was nothing we could charge."

Bohrer suspended the student for five days. That, Bohrer said, prompted the parents of the 18-year-old to come in and yell at Bohrer and a school administrator to mind their own business.
Oh, read the whole thing! Her's my favorite part, though:
When rifle-toting freaks can lawfully park a short sprint from school doors, you have a recipe for tragedy.

A troubled student or outsider "could be out to the car and back in seconds," Bohrer said of Holyoke's layout. That's because the public street is actually closer to the school than the official student parking lot, where weapons-at-school laws can be enforced.

The dog that found the rifle and beer did its job. Now, it's time for everybody else to do theirs.
That's right...a man with a public forum, Jim Spencer, is able to libel an unnamed 18-year-old student [not named because the DENVER POST is "concerned" about our youth; apparently less concerned about libel] who broke no law, committed no crime, did nothing that I (in my youth) and quite literally millions of other young people do on a regular basis...have a deer rifle and some .22s in the car on public property!

At 18, this young man can enlist, become part of a cadre of trained "rifle-toting freaks" and be in Fallujah by the end of the year.

Here's the DENVER POST contact information. I suggest a courteous note to Gregory Moore, the POST's editor. Don't even bother contacting Spencer...I've done that before, and it's like trying to explain trigonometry to a may pay attention, but don't bother buying it a protractor! You might want to send a note to the POST's token conservative columnist, David Harsanyl, who hasn't libeled anybody and seems a pretty sharp guy.

And to that pinnacle of public service, Joe DiSalvo, "private security contractor" — ie, an unsworn, non-law enforcement, member of the public with no authority to do anything — working public streets, hey dude...I park on public streets, too! Want to have your doggie sniff my truck?

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Interesting Reading on the Upcoming Republican Debacle

Unless, of course, President Thompson steps up to the plate. The great Geoffrey Norman, writing in NRO, notes that Rudy Guliani has a gun problem:
Would any of us vote for him?

Hard to say. If he changed his views on gun control once, what is to keep him from changing them again? Either the law is clear or it isn’t. When something is a “right,” it should not be contingent on one man’s shifting political ambitions and jurisdictions. That kind of “right” isn’t much of one at all, and people who believe in the right to bear arms think of it as a whole lot more substantial and fundamental than that.
Guliani, John "Gun Show Loophole" McCain, Mitt "NRA Life Member" Romney...did any of this sad sack of rabid cats ever consider for even one moment that the gun culture was not as stupid as their effete suck-up advisors told them? These guys give me a nasty case of indigestion. Hey want my vote? Join USPSA and IDPA, buy an STI racegun, shoot every weekend, get a carry permit and buy a Glock, go to GUNSITE for a week, throw a few references to John Browning and Clint Smith into your stump speeches, show up at the Steel Challenge and embrace the winner, start leaving comments on DOWN RANGE forums, make derogatory remarks about the Violence Policy Center and challenge Sarah Brady to a wrestling match in a steel cage...otherwise, drag your butt back to New York City and campaign against the rats in taco joints...

Monday, April 02, 2007

Wise Words from Brother John Farnam

Thoughts from John, from the Snubnose blogsite:
From a friend and experienced LEO in the LA area:

“Last night, the home of one of our LAPD officers was invaded by three armed-robbery suspects. The officer was roughed up, and his car, a television set, and at least one of his guns was stolen.

Our officer, alone in his home at the time, answered a knock at his front door at 11:00pm. One of three suspects sprayed him with OC, and then all three pushed their way into the house. The selection of the house was random, so far as anyone knows.

It is fortunate indeed that the officer’s wife and family were not home at the time.

The newspaper headline read: ‘LAPD Officer is victim of robbery at home’”


The headline should have read: “Three home-invasion suspects shot to death as they attempted break-in at LAPD officer’s house”

It should be a standard rule: Don’t open your door to people you don’t know, particularly at night. When people come to your house claiming to need help, keep the door closed and locked as you tell them you are calling the police, who will provide them with all the help they need..."
Read the whole thing...then practice what John preaches!

SHOOTER Gets Two Bullets Up!

Okay, I finally got myself to the movie theater last weekend to see SHOOTER, the movie adaptation of Steven Hunter's POINT OF IMPACT, and I'm gonna come down once again on the side of the Slate reviewer who said, "Bob Lee Swagger for President!"

Yeah, they tried to "lefty" the movie up...sneaky bad guys who kill people for...oil...but on the whole SHOOTER is the best "gun movie" since WAY OF THE GUN, and much more comprehensible. Steven Hunter sent me an e-mail and said that whether they realized it or not, the makers of SHOOTER had created a movie that captured the true intent of the Second Amendment.

Speaking of Mr. Hunter, I asked Steve whether he'd like to join me at a Barrett 1000-yard training class taught by former military snipers or up at the SIGARMS Academy for a weekend carbine class. Be fun to do some training with him, and he's a great hangaround buddy!

In a few minutes I've got to go upstairs to my office, which has come to resemble the command deck of the Starship Enterprise, although I don't have one of those cool chairs like Kirk...I'm also a little short on photon torpedoes, but I'm working on it. I'm trying to get ready for the NRA Members Meeting on several levels. Obviously, I'll be there representing the Outdoor Channel — I'll be signing at the Outdoor Channel booth Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I'll also be filming for DOWN RANGE and working on setting up more and better Internet video. I also will be sittign down with the Powers-That-Be at the NRA to discussing the growing crisis centering around recreational shooting on public lands...the disease is spreading, as leftover Clintonistas in the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management, emboldened by the successes in the Front Range and a Democratic Congress, are moving quickly to shut as much land to recreational shooting as they can.

I have succeeded in obtaining credible statements that the Boulder District Ranger Christine Walsh, one of the founders and prime movers of the USFS antigun jihad, bragged repeatedly over the last two years that she planned to shut down all shooting in "her forests" before her retirement next year. This is important because it shows that the whole USFS public meetings, etc., were nothing more than a ruse for her to pursue her private agenda — that is the definition of misfeasance ("Performing a legal action in an improper way").

Secondly, District Ranger Walsh has ignored a memorandum from the Department of Agriculture — her bosses — stating that her office's "interpretations" of federal law regarding USFS multiuse were flatly wrong...again, misfeasance on the part of a public official.

I believe that District Ranger Walsh and her staff are also guilty of malfeasance, performing an illegal action, for the following reasons:
1) The misappropriation of funding, to wit, using USFS funds to pursue a private agenda in direct contradiction to USFS national policy.
2) Lying to public officials from the Colorado Congressional group, an ethics violation for a government employee.
3) Lying to the media, another ethics violation.
4) Lying repeatedly about the "driver" for the antigun jihad, for example trying to place the blame for the closings on the USFS Enforcement division, which has flatly denied any involvement.
5) Lying about the USFS responsibilities for environment clean-up.
Finally, if she is taken at her word, District Ranger Walsh and her staff are guilty of running a spectacularly shoddy operation, for which she needs to be held accountable for the following reasons:
1) Initially, USFS "public meetings" on recreation shooting were not publically announced as specified by law; the firearms community only found out about the meetings through an emergency bulletin from the NRA.
2) USFS officials led by District Ranger Walsh were not able to provide any quantitative information on alleged complaints regarding recreation shooting, stating that no such quantitative information exists.
3) Despite the costs of the public meetings, USFS officals have made no attempt to quantify the information from those meetings. I have attended a majority of those meetings, and it is clear that there is no problem with recreational shooting other than District Ranger Walsh's personal problem. However, by enforcing an often ridiculous set of rules, including the refusal to quantify incoming comments, USFS officials have so far been able to ignore their own findings.
4) By their own admission, Boulder Ranger District makes no attempt to enforce existing laws for littering, illegal dumping, or any other illegal activities on USFS land. Yet they seek a wholesale ban on recreational shooting, which they clearly intend to enforce.
5) District Ranger Walsh disregards input from anyone who doesn't agree with her agenda, including law enforcement personnel in the areas affected by the range closures.
6) I have personally observed USFS employees having sex in a USFS truck on a public road...essentially, that's the kind of shop District Ranger Walsh runs.
Range closures in the Roosevelt and Arapahoe forest — those under the "stewardship" of District Ranger Walsh — have already suffered numerous "unintended consequences" because of the closures...all of them bad:
1) Local law enforcement in the affected areas no longer have convenient places to train and qualify, which can potentially harm all of us who live in the areas.
2) Closing of traditional range areas have pushed many more shooters into increasingly smaller areas, which are now suffering from overuse. More shooters in smaller areas means more impact...a situation that did not exist before Distict Ranger Walsh began her antigun jihad.
3) Recreational shooters are also being dispersed throughout a larger area...the very situation District Ranger Walsh alleged she did not want. In short, District Ranger Walsh is trying very hard to create a problem where one did not exist before.
As I've stated many times before, District Ranger Walsh's illegal and unethical actions are disasterous for hunters and shooters in Colorado's Front Range. Because there is so much public land, a public range system has never taken root in Colorado. Most shooting ranges are private clubs, usually with very long waiting lists. The Boulder Rifle Club, for example, has a 7-10 year waiting list for membership. Competition shooters no longer have any places to practice; hunters no longer have a place to sight in for hunting season; plinkers no longr have the opportunity to learn firearms and firearms safety in an unpressured environment.

District Ranger Walsh has said numerous times, including to my face, that, "I am the law in my district."

I don't believe that. I also don't believe that public lands are "my forest," either District Ranger Walsh's or even mine.Federal statutes are quite specific on mixed use, and USFS headquarters has made it very clear that recreational shooting is a long-established and legal use of the public lands.

I dont think it's unreasonable to require government employees to obey the law, both federal statutes and ethical guidelines. I don't think it's unreasonable for federal employees to account for how they're spending my money.

District Ranger Walsh doesn't need to retire...she needs to be held accountable for her personal and her office's misfeasance and malfeasance, misappropriation of public funds for a personal agenda and her repeated lying to concerned individuals, the media and public officials.

I will be sending a copy of this post certified to the Undersecretary of Agriculture in charge of USFS issues, the heads of USFS, the NRA legal department and members of the Congressional Sportsmen's Caucus and Foundation.

District Ranger Walsh isn't "the law," but she is accountable under the law!