Thursday, December 31, 2009

For 2010, Faith

A thought as the new year begins, from LOTR as always, spoken by Aragorn when all hope seemed lost:
Hold your ground, hold your ground. Sons of Gondor, of Rohan, my brothers. I see in your eyes the same fear that would take the heart of me. A day may come when the courage of men fails, when we forsake our friends and break all bonds of fellowship, but it is not this day. An hour of wolves and shattered shields, when the age of men comes crashing down, but it is not this day. This day we fight! For all that you hold dear on this good Earth, I bid you stand, Men of the West!

The Last Day of a Miserable Year

“A prophet is the one who, when everyone else despairs hopes. And when everyone else hopes, he despairs. You’ll ask me why. It’s because he has mastered the Great Secret: that the Wheel turns.”
— Nikos Kazantzakis
The Last Temptation of Christ

Mama said there'll be days like this,
There'll be days like this Mama said
(Mama said, mama said)
Mama said there'll be days like this,
There'll be days like this my Mama said
(Mama said, mama said)
— The Shirelles
Mama Said

And who can look back on the year taken as a whole and not mutter under his or her breath, "Good Riddance," the good subsumed by the bad. I propose we dub 2009 "The Year of the Half-Empty Cup."

The Wheel, thank heavens and a host of Lesser Deities, does indeed turn!

At least business-wise, it's been an extremely good year — the successful launch of THE BEST DEFENSE, one of the top shows on OUTDOOR CHANNEL, the creation and launch of TBD/SURVIVAL, filming the 10th season of SHOOTING GALLERY (which premiered last night). I shot a lot of great guns...memorable ones include the short-barreled full-auto FAL that nearly got away from me (you'll see that in a couple of weeks on SG), the Para Lt. Colonel 9mm 1911, the USFA Double Eagle .44 Special I've been carting around the last month, the little Ruger LCR polymer frame revolver, my .50 BMG Barrett...and lots and lots of black rifles...

I got to spend a lot of time with some very cool people...I've worked with Larry Potterfield at Midway USA for years, but this year we spent a bunch of time both filming and shooting; He's a great guy and a good friend. I also spent a lot of travel time with Wes Doss, a brilliant trainer and an all-around good guy. We're going to be covering his "1 Inch To 100 Yards" conference for both DRTV and SHOOTING GALLERY in 2010.

I finished watching LOTR last night, as is my habit every Christmas season. I believe it gets better with each viewing, and it's message of faith, sacrifice and, ultimately, hope is a message we can all use right right now.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

From the "OH, What the Heck!" Files

A Sterling SMG-styled pistol in...get this...7.62 X 25 Tokarev! Manufactured by Wise Lite Arms, these have apparently been around for a couple of months, but I'm just running into them. The Toke round has always had a surprisingly large number of followers, largely because of the bazillions of CZ-52s out there...I have one and aside from the fact that it has the ergonomics of stepped-on Twinkie and is butt-ugly to boot, it's a cool gun to shoot. The Toke is also popular because it's a smoking little round, a poor man magnum. It's also a dirt cheap little round to buy on the surplus market...maybe the last one left. Centerfire Systems has these bad boys in stock for $550, with 7.62 X 25 for 10 bucks for 70 rounds.

Oh come know you want one! Even if you have no idea what it actually is...

It's a Rhino, the newest .357 revolver on the block from Chiappa Firearms in Italy, run by my good — if weird — friend Ron Norton. The Rhino concept's been knocking around since 2000...and no, it's not a Mateba (which I always lusted after in .44 Magnum), although it was designed by the same guy, Emilo Ghisoni.

It looks like the cutesy/ugly little thing is finally going to make it to the U.S. market...this from today's press release:
Called the Rhino (sort of resembles one too) you will first notice that the barrel is actually at the bottom of the cylinder. The gun is designed to fire from the bottom chamber of the cylinder (6:00 position not 12:00 as with other revolvers).

The new design resulted in improvements of the internal mechanisms over conventional revolver designs yielding up incredible reliability, a super-smooth action and improved safety.

Function over form! The Rhino's low barrel design ergonomically shifts recoil energy into the center of the palm of the hand and in line with the forearm thus greatly reducing the effects of felt recoil. Traditional revolver design (semi-autos too)place the barrel above the hand.

When the gun is fired the leverage applied by that design forces the recoil into the web area of the hand between the thumb and trigger finger causing significant muzzle snap. Not the Rhino! Due to this new design a shooter can now fire very fast and accurate repeat shots.

The Rhino is designed reduce its carry profile. This design is even carried into the hexagonal shaped cylinder making for a flatter profile when carried (especially handy for legal concealed carry).'s not "Victorious Mongoose," but you have to admit "Rhino" is pretty close...surprised they didn't call it "Tactical Rhino" and put a rail under the barrel. Anyway, gotta have one...have already requested the T&E version! Comes with 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6-inch barrels, and so far only in .357 Magnum. It'll be distributed by MKS Supply, who are also partnered with Charter Arms. Fifure an MSRP between $775-980, depending on options.

Finally, above is PROOF POSITIVE that I do NOT get all the good toys, no matter what the commercial on OUTDOOR CHANNEL says!!!

This absolute screaming masterpiece of a 1911 was built by the great Dave Lauck at DL Sports for Gunny Hisself, R. Lee Ermey. Probably should have lettered "G-L-O-C-K" on the slide, eh?


New Year's Eve Eve...

For some reason I woke up early this morning, and I got to thinking about the lessons of the last decade. Two popped to mind:
1) All politicians lie all the time.
2) Buy ammo in bulk lots when it's cheap...or at least cheaper.
Okay, maybe not the profundities you were hoping for, but hey, it was early!

Lot of cool things going on this week:

A COMPLETE MAKEOVER FOR DRTV went up this morning...Marshal Halloway hasn't slept in days. Let us know what you think!

Season 10 of SHOOTING GALLERY starts today! First episode is the one you guys have asked for repeatedly...a peek into my gunsafe!

Second season of the runaway hit THE BEST DEFENSE starts today...we took the scenarios to such a whole different level that one exec said we needed to label them "simulations!"

The premiere of Rob Pincus' S.W.A.T. Magazine TV, also today! Congratulations, Rob!

And next week, a whole slew of new DRTV videos and the premiere of our DRTV/ weekly video blog, hosted by Yours Truly!

We've been busy little beavers...

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

MAIG Blueprint for Ending Gun Ownership in the U.S.

Sebastian at Snowflakes in Hell has obtained a copy of Mayor Michael Bloomberg's Mayor Against Illegal Guns secret plan presented to President Obama. The document, obtained through an FOIA request, outlines an attack not on "illegal guns, but on all gun's Sebastian's quick summary of the points:
• Require REAL ID compliant identification for all gun purchasers. Those in non-complying states, which are many, will no longer be permitted to buy firearms.
• Recommends a ban on the importation of all “non-sporting” firearms and ammunition, and specifically calls for banning the FN Five-Seven. Kiss cheap imported rounds of military caliber goodbye. Maybe kiss Glock’s goodbye too. MAIG isn’t all that specific on what would be sporting or non sporting. Also note that MAIG can no longer claim they do not advocate banning guns. They do.
• Calls for keeping records for people who get a NICS default proceed, which means your background check has not “cleared” but you went through the required three day waiting period. These records can be kept for up to 20 years, in the case of someone who’s name matches someone on the “terror watch” list and six months ordinarily. Default proceeds can happen if NICS has incomplete records, or the system is down for a protracted period of time.
• Calls for more enforcement of gun shows using the Richmond model. The techniques used at the Richmond gun shows were bad enough that Congress held hearings about the methods, and demanding ATF put a stop to them. They actually recommend rescinding a number of the changes made to prevent these abuses.
• Recommends ways for the administration to exploit loopholes in Tiahrt to publish information on “problematic” gun dealers (so they can be sued by New York City, no doubt). As we’ve pointed out on this blog before, having a lot of traces doesn’t necessarily mean a dealer is breaking the law.
• Lots of recommendations for new record keeping requirements on the part of FFLs
• Requiring placement of alternate serial numbers of every newly manufactured gun, and requiring serial numbers to be deeper and larger. Also require that a consistent serial numbering scheme be adopted across all manufacturers and importers.
• Asks ATF to promote MAIG’s Responsible Dealer Partnership Program that they foisted on Wal-Mart, much like they do with NSSF’s “Don’t Lie for the Other Guy.” They imply NSSF’s program does not go far enough.
• Asks the CPSC to mandate gun safety lock standards. Gun dealers are required to provide these, but many gun owners are older, or younger, and do not have children. This would be a way to add substantially to the cost of a firearm, if a 30 dollar lock needed to be included with each sale.
• Extend the multiple purchase reporting requirement to long guns, especially ARs, 50 caliber firearms, and Kalashnikov variants. MAIG is not very clear on this, and I think it would be difficult for dealers to keep track of the current state of regulation.
• Specifically calls for the Stinger Pen Gun to be reclassified as an AOW. I had never heard of this before, but I guess it really pisses off someone in the New York Mayor’s office, which is a good enough reason, if any, to go buy one.
This is a deadly serious antigun initiative, especially since almost all these points can be accomplished administratively, with the stroke of a pen, with no Congressional approval required. This from the Bloomberg report introduction:
The coalition has identified 40 opportunities in six areas where the Administration could enhance enforcement of existing laws without Congressional action.
This is the most sophisticated attack on RKBA ever, because it it flying under the radar and is now in the hands of the most antigun President in history.

Make no mistake — this is a blueprint for laying the groundwork for the complete disarming of America. Should Obama choose to act on any of these points we — as Sebastian correctly pointed out — "pretty screwed."

BTW, here's the information on the Stinger Pen Gun...I've never actually seen one of these things for sale, although if I do I will be buying one...

Monday, December 28, 2009

Bob the Nailer is Back!

I, SNIPER, Steven Hunter's latest installment in the Bob Lee Swagger saga, debuts tomorrow. Go buy it quick like bunny because it is an honest-to-goodness rip-roaring page-turner with a sweeping POINT OF IMPACT-sized canvas.

Here's what Amazon says:
I, Sniper will satisfy Stephen Hunter's legions of fans and win him droves of new ones with its signature blend of brilliant plotting, vivid characters, razor-sharp dialogue, and extraordinary gunfights. And when Swagger and the last of his antagonists finally face each other, reenacting a classic ritual of arms, it is clear that at times there's nothing more necessary than a good man with a gun and the guts to use it.
Right on...check out the first couple of pages on Amazon and prepared to be hooked!

And as a special surprise, go over to DRTV for my exclusive video interview with Steve on I, SNIPER.

We're also going to be giving away autographed targets shot by Steven while we were filming the DRTV interview and the episode of SHOOTING GALLERY...there's a unique addition to your gun room!

Visit Steven's unofficial website for dates on the book tour.

BTW, I make a "guest appearance" in the always knew I was a "fictional character" anyway...didn't'ja?

New Security Rules for Air Travelers

Today Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano announced new security rules for air travelers, guaranteed to reassure American passengers...more as it develops...

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Stopping in the Woods on a Snowy Afternoon...

...we broke out the Atlas snowshoes and hit the snowy trails today, with Alf the Wonder Beagle breaking trail. A couple of times she got in over her head and had to swim out of a snowdrift, but for the most part she did an admirable job with her 4PD* (*4 Paw Drive). The cool thing about virgin snow is that we could see the tracks Alf was following so diligently.

As has been the case for the few weeks, my "companion" on the snowshoe trek was the USFA "Double Eagle" snub-barreled .44 Special single action in a Bob Mernickle high-ride belt holster. There's something undefinably satisfying about packing a single action. Maybe it's a reminder of hiking along the Tennessee river with my grandfather and my father's Flat-Top .357 in an old Hunter holster, or plinking snapping turtles out of stock ponds with a Ruger Single Six .22 — the farmers paid a "bounty" of $.25 a snapper, a buck for one of the huge pond-clearing monsters.

Maybe it's an intellectual connection to the legends of our culture, Elmer Keiths, Skeeter Skeltons, my friend John Taffin, or a historical connection to the men and women who walked these same Colorado trails more than 100 years ago with Colts (and maybe the occasional Remington) hung on their belts.

Or maybe it's the legacy of cowboy action shooting — so many hours of practice with the old thumb-busters until they are indeed second nature. For whatever reason, they just feel right...

Thoughtful Words from a CCW Holder

Picked this up from Jeff at Alphecca, an op-ed from the Washington News Tribune:
I am well aware of the laws and regulations affecting me. Like most people who legally carry concealed handguns, I practice regularly at a range. My fellow license holders and I are generally well trained and practice more than many law enforcement officers.

I am aware of the responsibility I bear, and while I have no duty to retreat here in Washington, I will retreat if possible to avoid conflict.

But know this: Should the need arise, I will act swiftly, intelligently and decisively to protect my life and the lives of those around me.

You should feel a degree of comfort knowing that there may be someone nearby with means, motive and training to possibly save your life or that of those around you. Criminals, on the other hand, should feel fear. They never know if their next intended victim may be armed, trained and ready to effectively defend themselves.

If you feel safer patronizing establishments with a no-guns-allowed policy, please keep in mind that the criminals don’t obey the signs or the laws. That is why we call them criminals.

A Brilliant Day-By-Day!

Sure, you could scroll to the end of the blog, but I put it up front because I think it's worth reading!

Sober Thoughts for a New Year

This from Neo Neocom, a New England blogger who writes for the increasingly influential Pajamas Media:
This country was founded and then fostered by people who valued liberty highly: immigrant generations and their immediate children. As time has passed, Americans have become more removed from that overwhelming concern. The majority of earlier generations (or their parents) had direct personal experience of what lack of liberty felt like, and therefore were willing to defend liberty at almost any cost.

Perhaps too many Americans today have grown accustomed to the blessings of liberty, and do not feel it to be threatened. Perhaps there is no way to transmit that original fierce love of liberty to succeeding generations who have not personally felt the pain of its absence. Such Americans appear very susceptible to the idea that a vast country such as ours has the moral responsibility to guarantee health care to all its citizens as an additional inalienable right — whether they can pay or not, whether the country as a whole can afford it or not, whether it will cause substandard care for the majority or not, and whether it will end our ability to make our own medical decisions or not — and that only government is equipped to do this, even if it means taking from each according to his ability, and giving to each according to his needs, and even if the entire endeavor is impossible to carry off.

Have Americans decided that liberty is passé, and that equality and fraternity — or the pretense of both — are far more important? To paraphrase Churchill’s famous statement about Munich, in which he is purported to have said that “the government had to choose between war and shame. They chose shame. They will get war, too.”

Our government has had to choose between liberty and social justice. They chose social justice. They will get neither.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

About that FAL...

Actually, after all my whining on wanting a trick FAL, about a month ago I found we desperately needed a PO-FAL (Plain Old FAL) for some video work. I contacted DS Arms and had them quickly ship us a standard flavor FAL.

I had every intent to send it right back and hold out for one of the DS signature guns, but the more I handle the standard FAL the more I like it. Retro is cool...

Mo' Is Better, Right?

I note that U.S. Firearms is cranking up their 2010 product line, including the 12-22, a 12 shot .22 rimfire Single Action Army clone...and yes, it is on the expensive side of the fence, $936 MSRP. It is a beautiful gun — USFA has become the gold standard for U.S. handgun manufacturing. My friend Doug Donnelly, founder of USFA, has made a commitment to build heirloom quality guns...Doug's guns make me think of being a kid again, when each new gun was a work of art worthy of at least a museum. They're "WOW!" guns.

I mentioned the USFA Double Eagle I got recently, a 3 1/2-inch .44 Special single all know I have a jones for short-barreled big bores, especially .44 Specials. I started shooting the Double Eagle last week, and it's every bit as good a shooter as it looks. In fact, it has quickly become a go-to pcking pistol in a Bob Mernickle high-ride holster. We'll have DRTV video in January on the Double Eagle. BTW, I also note that USFA is adding a custom shop Sheriff's Model in .45 Colt in 2010...the Sheriff's Model differs from the Double Eagle with a half-inch shorter barrel, no front sight and no ejector rod. The ejectorless models will also be available with front sights and 2-, 3- or 4-inch barrels.

I also have to admit being drawn to the new .357 Shooting Master single action, with its big honking adjustable rear sight. All things considered, this looks like one heck of a choice for long-distance pistol shooting. The original Colt Shooting Masters were, I believe, built on the wonderful large-frame New Service DAs. I've always lusted after one of the USFA Super .38 1911s, preferably nickel-plated...

Friday, December 25, 2009

Inidana Jackson & Wolf Bane's Christmas Menu

This year, we decided to go for something a little different, and Asia-themed Christmas dinner.

For appetizers, we have a selection of sushi — tuna, salmon, unagi, a California roll — and raw northwestern oysters. My Sweetie will be swinging the razor sharp MAC Japanese sushi knife, so I'll be keeping a low profile slurping oysters and horseradish sauce.

Main dish will be flash-sauted sesame rare tuna steaks...I had hoped to grill them outside but hey, 8 whole degrees, a brutal gusting wind and blowing snow...there are limits here! The tuna will be accompanied by a mix of stir-fried veggies and ushrooms with a hot Hoisin-based sauce and soba noodles. No Crescent rolls, however...

Dessert-wise, by popular demand we deviated from the theme for one of my "signature" dishes, a very light and fluffy raspberry and Framboise raspberry liqueur chocolate mousse.

The only disappointed ones are Alf the Wonder Beagle, who had her heart set on rack of raw elk ribs, and Pokke-san the tailless cat, who wanted a mouse.

I thought in the spirit of the season I'd remove the FAL from the guest bathroom, as I forgot to decorate it...

Christmas Morning, 2009

The photo above from the 173rd Airborne memorial homepage says it better than I ever can. On this day of all days, our thoughts, our prayer, our hopes are with the men and women in serve in far-flung lands and here at home. You are heroes, one and all.

Merry Christmas
the Michael Bane Blog

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Color Me Puzzled... to why Richard Swan, CEO of Atlantic Research Marketing System and his wife and VP, Sharon, would donate $500 each to the campaign of rabidly antigun MA Senate candidate Martha Croakly instead of pro-gun Republican Scott Brown? A.R.M.S. has been around a long time and they make a superb line of products for black rifles — not exactly beloved in Massachusetts.

Croakley has no published statements on her "Issues" page, but she is a mainline Dem endorsed by John Kerry and every union on earth. According to the folks in MA who've been contacting me, Croakley has actively supported and maintained the onerous MA "gun safety" regulations that have decimated the number of handguns available for sale in MA. She's also actively opposed a "workaround" that would allow target shooters to get their specialized guns.

OTOH, Brown's issue site says this:
Gun issues
I support the Second Amendment and believe that citizens have the right to keep and bear arms as a basic constitutional liberty. I support safe and responsible gun ownership.
Of course, this is America and we are all free to support and vote for whomever we choose. And yes, we understand the difference between companies giving money to a candidate and executives in companies giving money to a candidate. But the truth is every day every one of us "votes with our wallets" — we choose where we want to spend our painfully constrained dollars. My friends in MA have expressed concern about giving money to a company where even a small portion of that money goes to support people who want to strip us of our rights.

I believe that is a valid concern.

A Blogpost I Wish I'd Written

From Tam at View From the Porch, commenting on the "stunninng" news (which you read here months ago) that Sig would be introducing their own AR15 clone:
A new AR clone these days is about as "unexpected" as another Friday the 13th sequel or Law & Order spinoff.
Here are my predictions for "unexpected" AR announcements at SHOT:
Harrington & Richardson H&R-15: Cast parts and stained birch furniture keep costs down. Sold at Wal-Mart for $109.95.
Harley-Davidson HD-15: Leaks oil. Comes with clip-on ponytail and lick'n'stick eagle tattoo in box, as well as coupon for chromed BUIS, charging handle, and highway pegs.
Read the whole thing, and laugh out loud!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

From Brother Rush

Transcript from Rush Limbaugh's show yesterday:
RUSH: ...They're not listening to us. They have the polling data. You're wasting your time e-mailing them. You're wasting your time faxing them. You're wasting your time calling them. This is no longer a representative republic. This is not a democracy. You're nothing but a gnat. You're an inconvenience, especially if you disagree with what they're doing. You're somebody to be gotten even with. You're somebody whose mind isn't right yet. You are somebody that they're going to have to erase. They don't want to have to deal with your opposition. This is why I've been saying for practically my entire broadcast career behind this microphone, the only way to understand this is to understand what liberalism is and who liberals are, radical leftists, and at that point you will understand how truly insignificant you are. They don't matter to you. They're not even thinking about what you want and don't want. They're not thinking about how they can best respond to public opinion here to prolong their careers or to do the best for the country.

This is about them. This is about power in perpetuity. This is about ruling you, not governing the country. This is not about we the people. It's about them the political class. They have sought this moment ever since FDR. They have sought total control over this country, over this population, over individuals in this country for years. They have made a mockery of the notion that they're interested in what you think or care about their public opinion. They're not. They know the risks that they're running. That's why they have these slush funds to help with their reelection efforts, to try to help whatever fraud it takes next November with ACORN or what have you. They know that nobody wants this. They know vast majorities don't want this. That alone ought to tell you what we're dealing with and who we are.


Okay, I wore the 3D glasses and it was cool. Yeah, the plot was cartoonish but that's what I expected and it was still an excellent movie. I found that when the blue guys said "Sky People" I simply substituted the word "Democrats," and it was even more enjoyable. Plus, the girl aliens are hot in a a 1950s National Geographic photo spread sort of way. I always wanted to meet the right sort of woman with a tail and an attitude...

Monday, December 21, 2009


A sign posted at Ft. Benning (originally from

Finally — Winter!

Since it snowed on the last day of summer, today is sort of the first day of Winter, The Sequel. I'm getting ready to head upstairs to the studio to work on the podcast, and I've got to work on the set-up for the new 2010 video blog that will debut first on DRTV, then on And no, I have no idea how I'm going to get this done, but I'm sure I'll get it figured out by January.

I'm heartbroken that my Sweetie's Christmas present isn't going to make it by Christmas. Months ago she informed me that she'd like a longbow for Christmas...she's not much into shoes. I asked her whether she wanted the whole Sherwood Forest outfit, cute little short skirt, green beret, etc. like the above costume. She said no...emphatically...just a lot of arrows. After a couple of days of research work, I placed an order for a custom longbow with SiegeWork Creations, a tiny shop specializing in traditional archery. Christmas delivery was always a long bow shot crap shoot, but I had hoped. Sigh.

We'll be doing an Asian-themed Christmas dinner, after our orgy of traditional carbo bombs that we did for Thanksgiving. Grilled tuna will be the centerpiece. And lots of cold sake. Ho ho HO, says I!

I note this AM from Steve over at The Firearm Blogwho apparently stays up late — that HERA, the guys who did the "instant carbine" Glock are doing a similar trick with the 1911. Looks pretty cool, but it'll have to go through the 1934 Firearms Act hoops before it makes it to the U.S. A 16+ inch barrel would solve the problems.

I thought I'd link to a particularly cheery column in the U.K. Telegraph, titled, "There'll Be No Place To Run From The New World Government:"
And if the EU model is anything to go by, then the agencies of global authority will involve vast tracts of power being handed to unelected officials. Forget the relatively petty irritations of Euro‑bureaucracy: welcome to the era of Earth-bureaucracy, when there will be literally nowhere to run.
Last weekend meg-blogger Megan McArdle, writing in the Atlantic, made some telling points on the health care vote that is worth repeating here:
No bill this large has ever before passed on a straight party-line vote, or even anything close to a straight party-line vote. No bill this unpopular has ever before passed on a straight party-line vote. We're in a new political world. I'm not sure I understand it.
What's not to understand? Midnight votes? Passing bills no one has read? Locking the opposition not only out of the debate but out of the room? Ignoring the voice of the electorate? Huge bribes of public money openly paid for votes? Any of this sound familiar? There's nothing new is the politics of Third World strongmen, the politics of African warlords with blood on their hands, the politics of Eastern European thugs...the politics of Chicago. "Change" ain't always "good."

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Happy Yule!

Tomorrow is, of course, the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year, and we begin our long crawl back to the light. In the pagan tradition, the Holly King, representing the old year, battles the Oak King, representing the new year. The Holly King is slain, and the new year is born.

"Hoof and horn, hoof and horn
All that dies will be reborn
Corn and grain, corn and grain
All that falls will rise again."

Amen to that!

I'm trying to wind down this week...of course I've got the podcast to do and the usual collection of conference calls and last minute meetings, but on the whole, I'm going for mellow. We've got some moderate days before the snow comes in for Christmas, so I'm going to get to the range and do a few videos and a bit of shooting.

BTW, I got my Walnut Hill swaging/reloading press from Richard Corbin! I want to try some pure lead bullets in .44 Special, .357 and .32s, as well as use it for a press for the .50 BMG...

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Good Match Day!

Well, a 3-out-of-5 stage good day at the Pawnee Station cowboy action match. I would first like to announce on Stage 1 Indiana Jackson beat me fair and square — we both shot clean, but she was just faster than me. I sense this is a harbinger of things to come. Thankfully, I came back later in the match, so I don't have to go to Guy Court or anything.

She's still having all kinds of trouble with her birdshead Ruger .32s...they're hanging up as if there's a high primer, but the ammo is fine. Hopefully we'll get it sorted out, because it's a sweet set of guns to shoot.

We took the new Ruger to the range today, and it clocked pretty much rave reviews. It safe to say, I suppose, that the gun is a revolver and it is a single action. A nice gun!

Then we went to a Christmas party in the People's Republic of Boulder...I was sort of reminded of Ann Coulter's book HOW TO TALK TO A LIBERAL (If You Must). A bunch of people at the party are friends of my Sweetie and I, but it's hard to navigate a room full of liberals...we no longer have a set of shared assumptions. Example: a couple of people were talking about how exciting it was that America was finally moving toward socialism, "even though most people are too stupid to know it's socialism!" Wow! What could be more exciting? Socialism! It's worked so well everywhere else! Michael had to leave.

BTW, I've been meaning to mention that my friend Dave Skinner at STI International is pressing ahead with all sorts of cool stuff. I like the looks of the new Apeiro, even though the name sounds like a small, featureless Ford coupe. It's a continuation of their 2011 modular steel frame/polymer grip series guns. Dave also announced STI wold be rolling out a bunch of goodies for SHOT...from his most recent SkinnerGram:
Well, I told you I'd drop a couple hints about new product in the period leading up to SHOT, so here goes: Look for an "Officer's" size 1911 even smaller than the "Escort"? How ‘bout a "Ladies Gun"? Anybody up for a "2011" even smaller than the "VIP"? Accessories for the rifles? Smaller calibers of the GP6? Maybe a DAO, shorter version of the GP6? Shorter SA/DA version? That's not all we have up our sleeve but it ought to be enough "bait" for the moment!
I'm particularly interested in the 2011 smaller than the VIP. I've always liked the VIP...

Friday, December 18, 2009


Had a wonderful dinner last night with Steve and Jean Hunter and our crew in Baltimore last of those great dinners where I wish all of you guys could have been at the table!@ Guns, movies, conversation and Big Fun. Marshal Halloway (there filming for DRTV), producer/director John Carter and I believe the Stephen Hunter SHOOTING GALLERY is going to take the show to a new'll of course be the final judges of that, and you'll probably get to see it in early February. To whet your appetite, DRTV is going to release our entire interview with Steve on I, SNIPER the week the book is released in January. Of course...another first for DRTV. Oh yeah, we have Steve's targets from our filming; he autographed them all and we'll be giving them away on DRTV...a unique collectable for Hunter fans!

BTW, 47TH SAMURAI has been optioned for Hollywood. Sometime between now and forever it may be the next Bob the Nailer movie.

On the way home I picked up FOUR — count 'em! — new guns...well. one old gun and three very very new new they're not cataloged by any of the companies. Here's a little of the boxes was from Ruger...I opened the box, then called Ruger and said one world...SOLD! That baby's not leaving the house!

The other stuff is just as cool...the earliest embargo date on at least one of the guns is 4 January — we'll have DRTV video and full details as soon as we can tell you.

Pixs of the new Bushmaster ACR, the once and future Masada, are up on, thanks to Jesse James, winner of this years AAC Silencer Shoot...the top prize was an ACR. Jim Shepherd at the SHOOTING WIRE is all stoked up about the Beretta ARX-160, the Italian Army's new battle rifle:
Even more impressive - at least to me - Beretta's quick-change barrel system. Using two hands, again with no tools, a user can choose from several barrel options, make the change from short, -mid, to -precision length barrel, and be back in action in seconds.
While I'm catching up, Caleb over at Gun Nuts Media had an interesting article yesterday on the .410 pistol-gripped shotgun as a self-defense, albeit last ditch, self-defense tool:
In .410, the pistol grip shotgun actually makes a lot more sense. Then you get all the benefits of a short overall length, and with the light recoil of even the stoutest .410 loads it would be much easier to aim and manage recoil when firing without the benefit of a shoulder stock. I do feel like the sling is a must have though, if for no other reason than it allows the shoot a way to retain the weapon if you’re in a CQB situation in your house, as well as providing a more stable firing platform when the shotgun is pressed out against the sling.
Not my first choice, but for apartment dwellers and in some cases the elderly and the physically impaired, not an irrational choice.

This was the LAST TRIP OF THE YEAR!!!! Gonna shoot a cowboy match out in the tundra tomorrow, then do homney stuff for a couple of weeks!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Steve Hunter & Colt Python

You're gonna love this show!!!

-- Post From The Road

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Grinding Toward Baltimore

Today's flites are definitely of the "salmon swimming upstream" variety...

Am excited about new gun that arrived spontaneously's a - whoopsy! - secret. One that I've been looking for, of the "carry" variety.

I think I'm going to peddle an AR and put the money in a .44 Special 1866 Winchester clone from Cimarron. Have always wanted one, and the ARs seem to be multiplying in the dark of the gunsafe. I'd also like a 9mm Beta Mag for the Spike's Tactical pistol, which would bring impracticality to a whole new level.

Time to go (again)!

-- Post From The Road

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Inquiring Minds...etc....

One of the great questions of our time...why gangstas hold their guns sideways...from SLATE:
What's the point of holding a gun sideways?
To look Hollywood, of course. Journalists and gun experts point to the 1993 Hughes brothers film Menace II Society, which depicts the side grip in its opening scene, as the movie that popularized the style. Although the directors claim to have witnessed a side grip robbery in Detroit in 1987, there are few reports of street gangs using the technique until after the movie came out. The Hughes brothers didn't invent the grip, though. In 1961's One-Eyed Jacks, Marlon Brando used it, as did Eli Wallach in 1966's The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly. Directors may prefer the style because it makes it easier to see both the weapon and the actor's face in a tight camera shot.
While the side grip does not increase the risk of stovepiping, it is terrible for aim. It's extremely difficult to properly use the top-mounted sight on a handgun that is turned sideways. Not that this matters much to the average street criminal. According to an FBI study, 60 percent of them don't even use the sight. Aiming a gun sideways has long been shorthand for risky, indiscriminate shooting. The title character in George Washington Cable's 1894 novel John March, Southerner, exclaims, "No man shall come around here aiming his gun sideways; endangering the throngs of casual bystanders!"
Well, I feel we're a little closer to the truth now! Over at AnarchAngel, Chris has a great piece on "inexpensive" 1000 yard shooting..that is, less expensive than, say, a Porsche or a six-pack of mistresses:
If you're smart about it, for anywhere from $1300, to $2600, rifle and glass; you can get a rig that will shoot 1000 yards all day long.

In general, the more you spend in that price range (presuming you're bargaining well), the more consistent and precise your combination is going to be, and the easier it will be to hit at range; but the value "sweet spot" on the rifle is likely around $1100-$1200, and on the glass around $800.

So let's call it $1900-$2000 for the sweet spot, rifle and glass. For that money, you're getting a great trigger, a great barrel, a decent stock, and a decent tactical scope.

Call it a Savage Model 12 precision with a Bell and Carlson stock, a Krieger Barrel, and a Burris XTR tactical. That combo right there would run right at about $1900-$2000 including a bipod, swivels, recoil pad etc....

If you just wanted to maximize value completely, and not have any extras, you could build up a single shot Encore, blued with factory stock, a Bullberry barrel, a Vortex tactical scope, and a Harris bipod; for $1400 all up.

Frankly, that's cheaper than buying a straight up factory hunting rifle and mid grade hunting glass.

The great thing about buying this way is though, even if you find out you don't like, or don't have time for, long range precision shooting; you've still got a great rifle and scope, that are useful for hunting, and general target shooting, and you haven't paid too much extra for the capability you won't use.
You wanna do this with a .50, multiply everything by 4.

Monday, December 14, 2009


How about Dr. Grordbort's VICTORIOUS MONGOOSE 1902A CONCEALABLE RAY PISTOL, from the twisted minds at Weta (where else, gollum gollum?). Here's what you need to know:
Augmenting security with discretion, the Victorious Mongoose has been purposely produced at just over half the size of the earlier wave weapons, while still packing the punch of its big-boned counterparts. Snugly nestled in an unbearably dashing leather-embossed and satin-lined case, the world's first concealable ray pistol is at last upon us in complete and flawless glory.
Our much cherished pocket-size atomiser - the world's first concealable ray pistol and the fourth in Doctor Grordbrort's line of infallible aether oscillators - is now available for your fine and capable hands to clasp and fondle. With an edition size of a mere 400, this punchy little nipper is flying off the shelves like a cash-eating flying fish attacking your wallet - and those of you who have had the privilege of such a rare encounter will know what curious jollies are to be had there. You know who you are.
Weta's in NZ, of course, so the overnight shipping's gonna cost ya...don't putz around like you did on the $7,000 Blunderbuss, which I would come close to killing to own...especially if I could get it in 8 gauge...

I am going to make it my mission at SHOT to get a gun company to call one of their new guns "Victorious Mongoose." I suppose in today's culture it would have to be named Tactical Victorious Mongoose and available in Flat Dark Earth color...and yes, you are a "punchy little nipper" know who you are...

Last Trip of the Year

For Shot Show TV and to hang out with Stephen Hunter for SG...more when I land!

Good news from opthamologist today...initial take us restoring my right eye vision to at least 20/40, a LOT better than the 20/gazillion it wa! Cool!

-- Post From The Road

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Bloomberg's "Poll" Another Big Lie!

From the NRA-ILA:
This week, anti-gun New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg's anti-gun group, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, released the findings of a poll conducted by a political consulting firm called "The Word Doctors," whose slogan is "It's not what you say, it's what people hear." Word Doctors' president is a pollster who has been reprimanded by the American Association for Public Opinion Research and censured by the National Council on Public Polls, and who says that the key to polling is "to ask a question in the way that you get the right answer."

At some other time in our nation's history, an organization like this would not have been commissioned to conduct a poll, and perhaps it would not even have existed. At a minimum, its poll would have been considered biased and rejected by every newspaper in the country.

But today, as the distinction between editorials and news has become blurred, information is treated so superficially that a catchy word or two is enough to get someone elected to public office, and some in positions of authority cannot conceive of the concept of shame.
Read the whole release. The story's starting to move around the blogosphere...ready this from Bill Quick from the Daily Pundit added his own satirical spin:
I am proud to announce the establishment of Daily Pundit Polls, a new venture tailored for the needs of advocacy leaders and organizations.

We will guarantee to undercut any other polling organization in price, speed of delivery, and survey results appropriate to your needs, or your money back.

How can we do this? Well, we save a great deal of money by not doing any actual surveys in the first place. Simply submit the questions you would like researched, and the responses you would like to see. Our team of highly experienced professional novelists will construct a series of polling questions - and the appropriate results - within 48 hours of receipt. For an extra fee, we will blast-fax your poll results to every major media outlet, plus any specialized list of recipients you would care to add.
It's on us to attack this information wherever it appears. When your local paper invariably presents this "polling data" as legit, we need to go after it pretty aggressively.Be polite, but don't mince words — this is a lie!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

My Favorite New E-Mail!

This was waiting for me when I flipped on the computer this AM:
You are a boring man who produces boring television shows. End of story.
Well, I'm glad we cleared that up early! It helps me plan for the weekend. Later today, for example, I'm going to watch IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE twice, then spend the rest of the evening working on recreational calculus equations. Perhaps I'll have some milk.

Anyway, if you haven't finished your Christmas shopping, consider the art of Walton Creel. That's him working on his "canvas," above. He's taking the exhibition shooter's Indian Chief outline to a whole new level, using a gun to create some pretty interesting art pieces. He calls it "Deweaponizing the Gun:"
When I decided I wanted to make art using a gun, I was not sure what direction I would have to take. I knew I did not want to use it simply as an accent to work I was doing, but as the focus. My main goal was to take the destructive power away from the gun. To manipulate the gun into a tool of creation and use it in a way that removed it from its original purpose. To deweaponize it.

During my first experiment I came across the concept of creating an image hole by hole on a surface. I also figured out that canvas would be too stressed by the process of a rifle firing many bullets into it. I moved on to aluminum and, with further experimentation, I figured out exactly how far apart my shots needed to be and that moving beyond .22 caliber was simply too destructive. When the aluminum was painted beforehand, the blast of the gun knocked off a tiny amount of paint around each hole, which helped fuse the image together.
One of my best friends in NYC is an artist, and they all talk like that. I especially like the possum...hey, I'm from Tennessee, and there's nothing like having a big picture of dinner in a place of honor in your mobile home!

Interestingly enough, you can also get an album (that is for all you young people, a collection of recorded sounds, on vinyl, no less) with him shooting and loading. I suspect you'll be hearing some of that on next week's podcast!

Man. boring as this might seem, I'd love to commission a portrait of Alf the Wonder Beagle. BTW, all those Indian Chiefs shot by exhibition shooters now go for a pretty penny among antique collectors. Wouldn't it be great to have this one, shot by the legendary Ad Topperwein in 1938?

Thgere's more about gun art at the Shooting Gallery Wildlife Museum relation to my show, but it might be fun to stage and film an expedition. Tip of the hat to Say Uncle for the link!

Our friend David Hardy over at Arms & the Law blog has an interesting take on the concept of "common sense gun laws," a popular theme with the antis:
In face of all this hard data, the antis' theme has become "commonsense gun control." That, I think, is more than just "we only want a moderate amount of gun control." I think it also has a nuance of "don't expect us to cite hard data, just back whatever sounds like a good idea." Gun shows are "a loophole" that must be closed -- don't ask whether they're a source of criminal guns. Liberalized CCW is a terrible idea, will lead to street massacres -- don't expect us to show that it has ever had that result. Etc. "Commonsense gun control" thus equates to "we lost the battles over the hard data, and don't want to talk about them."
Read the whole thing...there are some important points. Important, because,as Sebastian very perceptively noted recently when discussing the Mayors Against Illegal Guns' survey that is getting traction all over the place, our enemies are moving to a different battlefield:
There’s a few conclusions that can be drawn from this.

1) MAIG is very serious about what they doing, and they are taking a very smart strategy to get what they want.
2) As gun owners, we’ve done a fantastic job in the past decade of educating other gun owners on last decade’s battles. You see high support for concealed carry, high support for gun ownership generically, and low support for semi-auto bans.
3) The debate is shifting onto grounds where we have not yet had the opportunity to educate gun owners. MAIG knows this and is ready to exploit it. More importantly, I think MAIG wanted to find out where we are strong, and where we are weak. This poll is basically reinforcement of their current strategy because it shows we’re weakest along their current line of attack.
Sebastian's doing an excellent job of staying on top of MAIG and the implications. Snowflakes in Hell should be a daily read.

Gotta go arm up my milk!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Thank GOT It's Friday...

Man, it has been a long week! I've been bustin' it to get the collateral material ready on the new shows we have in the pipeline — GUN STORIES, which picks up where TALES OF THE GUN left off; IT'S ALWAYS LOADED, which I'll get into later but that is going to change the whole ballgame...promise; BIG BORE CHRONICLES, the ultimate handgun hunting show! I figure we shattered all the paradigms first with SHOOTING GALLERY, then with THE BEST I'm going to break all the rules we created and cause my competition extreme heartburn. That's my favorite part of being in television...rolling out stuff that rattle the cages!

Am making Official Shooting Gallery Margaritas tonight, so I'll probably be watching repeats of Friends and thinking they're funny. When I got my colonoscopy I was awake the whole time. I asked they turn the television monitor toward me so I could see All Colon All The Time. The doctor asked me whether I was awake and what I saw...I told him it was more interesting than any episode of Friends I'd ever seen.

The Firearm Blog pulled off a cool catch today, finding the new S&W M&P .380. I'm surprised it took this long...the .380 sweepstakes has been running full bore for more than a year now. An M&P .380 makes all the sense in the world. I've got a Taurus .380 on the way...looking forward to it.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Back To Normal, Such As It Is...

First, thanks to all of you for the notes of well-wishing, prayers, and ultimately congratulations on my recent eye surgery. It means a lot to me. The vision is getting better and better as the effects of the surgery wear off. In fact, I can now see the telltale blurriness of the cataract in my left eye, which I never noticed before. I will probably have that eye done sometimes next year, unless I end up on one of ObamaCare's Death Panel proscribed list (Dear Mr. Bane...upon reviewing your application for cataract surgery, we note two important are old old old! And you are an enemy of the tough noogies and best of luck getting a seeing eye dog!...Best, Department of Public Caring).

I'm really excited about getting to the range, but the ravages of Global Warming are keeping me inside, huddled in front of the fire. We took poor Alf the Wonder Beagle out for her afternoon walk and she nearly blew away. She was all bundled up in layers, but she still looked pretty surly about the whole thing.

And while I've been laid up, our enemies have been ramping up. In today's WaPo, noted gun-hater EJ Dionne is ready to "revolutionize the gun debate" by proving that all gun owners, including NRA members, support every slimy antigun scheme to have come from the cesspool of Michael Bloomberg's Mayors Against Illegal Guns:
In his survey of 832 gun owners, including 401 NRA members, Luntz found that 82 percent of NRA members supported "prohibiting people on the terrorist watch lists from purchasing guns." Sixty-nine percent favored "requiring all gun sellers at gun shows to conduct criminal background checks of the people buying guns," and 78 percent backed "requiring gun owners to alert police if their guns are lost or stolen." Among gun owners who did not belong to the NRA, the numbers were even higher.

It's true that these gun owners, including NRA members, don't buy broader forms of gun control. For example, 59 percent of NRA members opposed "requiring every gun owner to register each gun he or she owns as part of a national gun registry," though I was surprised that 30 percent supported this.

And gun owners continue to worry that President Obama "will attempt to ban the sales of guns in the United States at some point while he is president." Asked about this, 44 percent of NRA members said Obama "definitely" would and 35 percent said he "probably" would.

Still, those surveyed stood behind the core idea that gun regulations and gun rights complement each other. The poll offered this statement: "We can do more to stop criminals from getting guns while also protecting the rights of citizens to freely own them." Among all gun owners and NRA members, 86 percent agreed.

NRA members also oppose the idea behind the so-called Tiahrt amendments passed by Congress. Named for Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.), the rules prevent law enforcement officials from having full access to gun trace data from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and require the FBI to destroy certain background-check records after just 24 hours. Talk about handcuffing the police.

The mayors' poll offered respondents this statement, antithetical to the Tiahrt rules: "The federal government should not restrict the police's ability to access, use, and share data that helps them enforce federal, state and local gun laws." Among NRA members, 69 percent agreed.
Ah, scumbags will be scumbags, won't they? Anybody with the IQ of one of those robotic hamsters so popular right now could write survey questions to get the answers they wanted. For example, on that spooky terrorist watch list question, an honest survey would have first defined the situation so the person filling out the questionnaire might have a better understanding of the question. For example:

1) The United States government presently maintains a "Terrorist Watch List" of more than 1 million people, including hundreds of thousands of Americans.
2) The list is secret; no one knows why people have been placed on this list. People on the list are not allowed to face the agency that placed them on the list nor question why they are on the list.
3) Persons on the list have NOT been convicted of any crime, nor are they "persons of interest" in any crime.
4) Thousands of innocent people, including members of Congress, lawyers and judges, even the President of Bolivia, have been detained or refused permission to fly because their names were ostensibly on this list.
5) None of these people have been granted due process, the founding principle of the American legal system and a principle that we extend even to self-confessed terrorists who have actively participated in the deaths of thousands of Americans.

QUESTION: Are you in favor of depriving persons on the secret Terrorist Watch List of even more of their Constitutional rights, even though they have committed no crime, been charged with no crime, have not been able to face their attackers nor been granted due process as guaranteed by American law?

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Can See! Can See!

Got the eyepatch off and, yes, I can see! I can see!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Avast, Ye Mangy Curs!





Midway USA Wins Baldrige Award

Midway USA has been named one of five recipients for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award:
The 2009 Baldrige Award recipients were selected from a field of 70 applicants. All of the applicants were evaluated rigorously by an independent board of examiners in seven areas: leadership; strategic planning; customer focus; measurement, analysis and knowledge management; workforce focus; process management; and results. The evaluation process for each of the recipients included about 1,000 hours of review and an on-site visit by a team of examiners to clarify questions and verify information in the applications.
This is a huge honor, essentially naming Midway USA as one of the best-run small companies in America.

Congratulations to to my good friend Larry Potterfield, who's presently in Africa chasing big elephants, and all the great folk in Columbia, MO, who have worked very, very hard for this honor.

HMMMMMMMM, after all the endless "gun-free workplace" propaganda we've heard over the years, I wonder if the fact that Midway USA's workforce are surrounded buy guns, with guns in practically every cubicle, changed any minds....

Monday, December 07, 2009

Light Blogging Likely!

I've got to spend all day today in the studio doing voice-over work for SHOOTING GALLERY, then tomorrow I get my eyeball refurbished...that means less blogging than usual this week...or maybe more...we'll see (nudge nudge wink wink say no more).

Jim Shepherd in this morning's SHOOTING WIRE noted that by his observation the little .380 semiautos were still selling like hotcakes topped with golden syrup, although perhaps not in so many snazzy words. That's consistent with what I'm seeing and hearing from the is amazing the number of .380 semiautos that have been sold since Ruger rocked the industry with the LCP.

In truth, when I put my pants on in the morning I stick the LCP in a DeSantis Nemesis holster in my pocket, where it stays all day. The only change is when I strap on my regular carry pistol; then I transfer the LCP to my left pocket. I know a lot of hardcore "J-frame people" who have switched over to the semis. Again, my standard carry ammo is Corbon DPX 80-grain.

I hope to have one of the little Taurus TCPs soon for T&E. As I mentioned a while back, I shot the premium priced Kahr a few months back and it was just a super — and accurate — little pistol. I shot a BUG gun stage with a borrowed Kahr .380 at Tom Givens' Tactical Conference last summer, and it was right there! I don;t like to make 12-15 yard shots with a pocket .380...especially a borrowed .380...but it was no problemo with the Kahr.

Briefly, Springfield has a new concealed carry M-series XD. Should be hugely popular. Gotta go to work!

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Snowy Sunday Nuthin' Big Goin' On...

I woke up this morning around 5AM and for the life of me couldn't get back to sleep. So instead of counting sheep I counted up all the reloading stuff I need to buy for the Spring .50 BMG initiative, where Michael Attempt To Get Beyond The ".50 Plinker" status. I've been lucky enough to put a lot of Big 50 rounds downrange from a bunch of different guns, including a few rounds through my own Barrett Model 99 single shot. I have a Hornady .50 BMG reloading set-up, and it works fine as long as it's a few rounds (think "power case trimmer!").

The .50 is irritating to reload because it's not like a "regular" commercial cartridge...specs are all over the place, since the cartridge was designed for the Ma Deuce with its adjustable headspace and blunt trauma style of operation. This is especially an issue with primer's hard to screw up repriming a commercial cartridge, unless you put the primer in upside down. Not so with a can seat 'em too deep, or over-crush them or, in general, screw up.

So I'm looking at a dedicated primer seater like the M2 Precision. At $300. Or the Hornady primer depth gauge, at a liitle less painful $117. I'd like little more precision in seating the bullet as well, so add another $238 for a CH-4D in-line seating die. And let's just flat out deal with this case trimmer nightmare, which means at the top end some sort of power tool like a Gracey or the painfully expensive Giraud, or more sanely a hand-cranked Forster, which I've used before on other cartridges, or a K&M, which comes highly recommended.

One thing I can unequivocally say for the .50 makes every other shooting sport cheap by comparison!

Friday, December 04, 2009

More Signs That the Bubble is Thoroughly Popped

S&W takes a beating on Wall Street today...from Barrons:
The gun maker Smith & Wesson (SWHC) said its sales outlook for the next quarter would be far off target.

The company said after the close of trading yesterday that for its fiscal third quarter, ending in January 2010, it expects sales of $90 million to $95 million, significantly below the average analyst estimate of $105 million, according to Thomson Reuters.

Not surprisingly, investors promptly fired back, dumping shares en masse.

The stock plunged 16% to $4.41 on the news as volume topped eight million shares, more than five times the average daily trading volume during the past three months.

H-K Woops?

About that squad automatic weapon contract for an H-K Christmas present? Maybe not. From Christian at DefenseTech:
So Syscom wrote me back a vaguely-​​worded email response to a query about all this, seemingly denying that the service had made a final decision on the IAR and stating only that the Corps had ordered “24 weapons” from an “existing contract” that was let back in December ’08. That would most likely be the original con tract to Colt, FN and HK for the IAR downselectees.
H-K has a history of ill-timed leeks...remember the big coverage on Fox about the "next generation U.S. infantry rifle," the late XM-8?

I'm waiting for my copy of my friend Dave Kopel's newest book, AIMING FOR LIBERTY: THE PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE OF FREEDOM AND SELF-DEFENSE. Here's the Amazon review:
David Kopel's book covers topics ranging from the origins of the Wascington, DC gun ban to the Heller decision. He discusses the genesis of modern American gun control, the KKK, the true anti-gun agenda and the deceptions and errors used to promote anti-gun laws. He covers the right to self defense from Judeo Christiran perspectives. Other chapters explore United Nations and International gun control attempts and failures, law enforcement abuses and solutions, the culture of the right to keep and bear arms and the gun control movement. He concludes his book with a chapter on several prominent American gunowners from Thomas Jefferson to Eleanor Roosevelt.
Dave is an important figure in RKBA circles, and I'm looking forward to the book.

There's a really brilliant piece of self-defense writing on master gunsmith Grant Cunningham's blog about shooting stances, and I would class it a "must-read:"
Since we're talking about self defense, let's start with the conclusion: as I study surveillance films of actual shootings, and as I play with the concepts of force-on-force training, I'm struck by the fact that violent encounters rarely involve an identifiable stance. The players, especially the defender, are shooting from whatever position in which they happen to find themselves.
Some may immediately think of the term 'training wheels', but I prefer to call the stance a 'scaffold': a temporary device that allows us to build something. In the case of a defensive shooter, we're building a skill set. Without the support of the scaffold - the solid, repeatable stance - it's difficult, if not impossible, to build those skills. With it, the student can focus on the truly important things, secure in the knowledge that they are operating from a stable base.

The problem comes when the instructor doesn't understand the true nature of the shooting stance. In those cases, the stance becomes an end unto itself: it drives the instruction, rather than serving as an instructional tool.
Back in the old days of IPSC shooting we used to design stages to force people out of their comfort zones. I may have mentioned one of my all-time favorite stages was the one I designed for a state championship...the Tom Sawyer Memorial Fence Assault. We got 20-some-odd feet of 6-foot high fence sections, anchored them on fenceposts, then had step ladders, platforms and obstacles along the length of the fence. Some of the shooting ports were cut with a Sawz-All; some created with just a sledge hammer, leaving a jagged, irregular-shaped hole; ports were anywhere from ground level to over the top of the fence. Targets on the other side of the fence were a contact distance out to 25 yards, with vision barriers to limit from which shooting port the targets were visible.

I was honored when one of the top shooters in the world said, "Congratulations, Michael...there is no good way to run this stage!"