An interesting quirk...
Over at Irons in the Fire
is another example
of something I've seen occasionally in so-called journalism. As he quotes from an article about someone in Oklahoma
pushing for a "legislative study" of Stand-Your-Ground laws:
"Is there a clear line on Stand Your Ground?," asked Oklahoma Representative Mike Shelton, (D) Oklahoma City, who is now calling for a legislative study into the law. Rep. Shelton is a registered gun owner who has been opposed to "Stand Your Ground" and "Make My Day" laws.
So here's my puzzlement. Oklohoma doesn't have state-level gun registration, or gun owner registration. Gun control supporters generally aren't sophisticated enough to view the BATF
E's 4473 form as "registration". So how is Shelton a "registered" gun owner? Who did he register with? Why is it necessary to describe him as a "registered" gun owner as opposed to an unmodified gun owner?
I've speculated about this before, but I've never seen a good answer from a "journalist" about why they describe gun owners this way. So I wrote this one to ask.
It's been a few days since I sent that email. Crickets.
Reason explains the special rules that apply to police
... and why you should oppose any police officer's bill of rights
that arrives in your legislature. They are just like us, not better.
House resolution for impeaching Attorney General Holder introduced
probably has little chance of passing, and even less chance of a Senate conviction -- but this is Obama's moment of weakness.
Rep. Pete Olson (R-TX) has introduced an Articles of Impeachment resolution against Attorney General Eric Holder for his role in Operation Fast and Furious and other scandals of President Barack Obamas administration.
Seven congressman have signed onto the resolution thus far in addition to Olson. They are Reps. Larry Bucshon (R-IN), Blake Farenthold (R-TX), Phil Roe (R-TN), Lynn Westmoreland (R-GA), Roger Williams (R-TX), Ted Yoho (R-FL), and Randy Weber (R-TX).
My representative is on that list. Time to go write him a thank-you note.
Aliens bearing arms?
All joking aside, legal resident aliens should be able to defend themselves, which means that states issuing concealed carry licenses need to apply the same criteria they do for citizens. Or that's what the Second Amendment Foundation is arguing anyway
Apple issues Warrant Canary
An interesting tactic
Perhaps the most interesting part of the transparency report are the last two sentences: Apple has never received an order under Section 215 of the USA Patriot Act. We would expect to challenge such an order if served on us.
Apples statement is an implementation of the so-called warrant canary. Canaries are used to signal that, as of the date published, there have been no law enforcement requests of a particular type received. In Apple's case, the canary is limited to a signal that no secret Section 215 orders have been served on the company. If the canary is removed in the next transparency report, it is safe for users to assume that a Section 215 data request and the accompanying gag order has been issued. We appreciate Apples implementation in particular, including its six-month delay, because if its use is ever challenged in court, the ample time will allow a judge to coolly and calmly review the constitutionality of any government attempt to compel Apple to lie. We fear that if the first challenge to a warrant canary comes before a court in a more rushed context, a rushed judge could make bad law.
It's tragic that this sort of tactic has become necessary in our current police state.
They just don't get the Constitution
They keep proposing to trample on the Constitution
al rights and liberties of innocent people, whether it's evesdropping on their communications or inspecting their homes
Last week, Swampscott Selectman Barry Greenfield proposed the idea of mandatory home inspections for the towns 600 licensed gun owners. He mentioned the Newtown massacre. He mentioned childrens safety.
Massachusetts law requires gun owners to store their firearms safely. Greenfield is frustrated with the inability of local cops to push their way into local homes and have a look around without all that probable cause and search warrant nonsense.
... but somehow it never gets any safer, and nothing gets done about the people who actually become terrorists
Free Ice Cream Ration Increased Again
Due to the demands of maintaining productive employment in the wonderful Obama Recovery, the free ice cream ration is being increased again.
Florida Stand Your Ground survives legislative attack
Last evening the Florida
House conducted a public hearing, judiciary committee debate, and committee
vote on HB-4003, which would have done away with Florida
's Stand-Your-Ground law by repealing Florida
statute 776.013. Home protection; use of deadly force; presumption of fear of death or great bodily harm.More details
at Sharp as a Marble
. It seems emails on this topic were roughly a thousand to one in favor of the Stand Your Ground
law. The anti-self-defense side was able to muster a total of 4 emails to one representative.
Quick, stop talking about Obamacare!
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder on Monday said the Justice Department has not decided whether to file federal civil rights charges against George Zimmerman in the 2012 killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.
Holder will make the decision
not to file charges when the issue is no longer useful as a political distraction, and not before.
Guns and Ammo magazine zumbos itself
Yes, it's another "I'm a gun owner, but..." editorial, published in Guns and Ammo magazine
I firmly believe that all U.S. citizens have the right to bear arms, but . . .
It should be noted that the link goes to a blog commenting on the article, not the article itself. No links for quislings.
UPDATE: Already fired
. But if the magazine under current control is so strong on the 2nd Amendment
, why publish the editorial at all? This is more like frantic backpedaling than sincerity. Guns & Ammo and the editor Jim Bequette has lost the trust of its readers, and it will take more than firing the author of an editorial to restore it.
Jury acquits sheriff who refused to charge concealed carry without license
More like this, please
A Florida sheriff was acquitted on Thursday of charges that he committed misconduct and falsified public records when he freed a jailed man who carried a loaded gun without a permit. Suspended Liberty County Sheriff Nick Finch, 51, had testified that he released Floyd Parrish from jail because he had a constitutional duty to uphold the Second Amendment right to bear arms.
Law enforcement agencies and individual agents are not obligated to enforce laws they believe to be unConstitutional. Prohibitions on the peaceful carry of arms, open or concealed, are unConstitutional under the 2nd Amendment
Seeing, but not understanding, the problem
The speaker of the Massachusetts
State House is pushing legislation to prevent welfare recipients from sending money or goods overseas. The amount of money transferred by wire services is said to be roughly $2.4 billion across the whole United States
, which isn't exactly peanuts but is hardly a pressing problem on the national budget. Nevertheless, he sees part of the problem, and wants to get ahead of voter angry by presenting a solution:
DeLeo is pushing legislation as part of the states new welfare reform bill that would prohibit Bay State recipients from using their EBT cards and the cash assistance they carry for international wire transfers.
The problem here is that money is fungible. Once you've given people money, they can trade it for other things. If you provide welfare benefits in any form other than "Here is a hot bowl of soup, sit down over there and eat it right now", then it can be transferred to others or traded. If you give them welfare benefits and say they can't transfer that money overseas, you are just creating a market for an underground business trading welfare benefits for goods or money that can
be sent overseas.
And that's exactly what happens.
Free speech in Columbia today
They are doing it wrong
So: if that is Chief Santiago, the police chief of a city of about 125,000 people, thinks that his department should "find you" and investigate you if you support the legalization of marijuana or oppose the ruinous, amoral War on Drugs. Notice the collection of cop tropes in the second response: (1) the thug's dance of first threatening to "find you" and then halfway backing off from it, (2) the "why worry if you have nothing to hide" routine, (3) the suggestion that advocating against the War on Drugs creates reasonable suspicion to investigate you bearing in mind that "reasonable suspicion" is a legal term referring to the quantum of proof that supports cops, for instance, stopping and frisking you, and (4) the statement that the cops are always open to hearing from citizens after threatening to come find a citizen for criticizing them.
And if you were wondering why I blog under a (somewhat thin) pseudonym? Yeah, that's why.
Hostile IRS questionaires of conservative groups sent to FEC by Lois Lerner
We already knew that FEC employees, without authorization, had asked Lerner for information about certain groups they were trying to get investigated. Now, we know that Lerner responded to that request by providing extensive, confidential tax information
from the IRS files on those groups to the FEC.Doing this appears to be a federal felony
Under the Internal Revenue Code, it is a felony for IRS officials to release taxpayer return information outside of the agency. For example, the Treasury Department will not release the results of investigations into unauthorized disclosures, even if they are requested by the party whose tax returns were allegedly leaked.
And we know what the IRS did about this: they provided Lerner with months of paid vacation followed by retirement with full benefits.
They just don't learn
Case in point, a moderately disgruntled Obama visionary
And then I close the book. Cutting to the present is a rude awakening, like snapping out of a dream. It's hard to remember those days of optimism -- they seem a distant memory, a sad reminder of opportunities gone by. Change indeed happened, in the years since I cast my first ballot. It was simply nothing I could have imagined.
You'd think this would be an opportunity for reflection upon the lessons learned. But no:
DoJ to use warrantless surveillance in criminal case
It's interesting that they are admitting it
, but I suspect they are admitting it in order to get a favorable court case.
It's noteworthy because, generally, the modern remedy for 4th Amendment
violations has been to exclude the evidence from being used at trial. This has good sides and bad sides, but viewed in that light, seeking to deliberately include the evidence does seem deliberately calculated to tee up that particular question.
California State court rules semiautomatic firearms not protected by 2nd Amd
This is a state court decision, not a federal court. It likely won't have much impact on the national debate, but for the moment it means that California
can continue to abuse its gun owner population with impunity. The decision
is based on the claim that semi-auto firearms are "dangerous and unusual" (or at least as much so as the short-barreled shotgun in the Miller
This is flawed for a number of reasons. Semi-auto rifles are not especially dangerous when used as intended, beyond the danger inherent in any firearm; millions of people own and use them safely, including for self-defense. So-called "assault weapons" are no more dangerous than any other semi-auto rifle, and often substantially less so due to their use of medium-powered ammunition. True assault rifles, ie machine guns, are already heavily regulated and are never used in crime when legally owned.Hat tip
to Of Arms and the Law
Gun control ballot initiative in Washington State
Sebastian has the details
Facebook and Maryland Government to partner on censorship
Reason Magazine has the story
Owning firearms a suspicious activity?
According to the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security, owning 2 rifles, 4 pistols, and a shotgun should be reported as suspicious activity and is apparently grounds for arrest
. For the government, that counts as terrorist activity. For most of my readers, that counts as a good range trip.
New Jersey smart gun law about to start ticking?
New Jersey has had a law on the books for year requiring that all guns sold in the state have "smart" technology to prevent unauthorized users from firing them. The catch is that the law kicks in three years after the first smart gun goes on the market, and no manufacturer has been willing to open that can of worms... until now
The police, of course, will be able to keep their "dumb guns". And probably be able to turn off your "smart guns". Which doesn't strike me as very smart at all.
California Governor vetoes semi-auto ban
In a surprise victory for gun rights, Democratic governor of California
Jerry Brown has vetoed the semi-auto ban
passed by his legislature along with 7 other new gun control laws. He signed 11 of them, so let's not pretend this was anything more than a mixed bag overall, but it's a heck of a lot better than simply signing everything that landed on his desk, and from a California
Democrat is even more surprising. I can't imagine that this would have even been possible if not for the Colorado
recall successes, which have doubtless reminded many politicians that they still have to answer to voters occasionally. I also have to wonder if Brown has national political aspirations -- a middle-ground-ish position could go a ways towards keeping the issue out of play.
Gun owners are not likely to be fooled by the attempt, though. A number of the gun control bills he signed are quite bad enough even without the semi-auto ban. Notably bad are the prohibition on parts repair kits, the registration requirements for ammunition purchases and extending the safety certificate requirement from handguns to rifles and shotguns. The latter in particular amounts to gun owner registration.
Sebastian questions whether we should thank him for the veto
. He wasn't doing us a favor, he was keeping his state out of an expensive lawsuit.
Obamacare developed by the same company as Canadian gun registry
When I first learned
that the company behind the Canadian gun registry was working on the Obamacare site, I wondered if shared opinion on that issue had influenced the selection of the company. I should have been asking whether their abysmal failure on the Canadian gun registry was a portent of doom for Obamacare.
Democrat campaign manager jailed for illegally requesting hundreds of absentee ballots
Hundreds of illegal ballots. Hundreds
WSVN reports Jeffrey Garcia pled guilty Monday to one felony charge and three misdemeanor charges after admitting he illegally requested hundreds of absentee ballots while he was running the campaign for Rep. Joe Garcia, who he is not related to.
That felony and trio of misdemeanors adds up to 90 days in jail. Is it any wonder these people think they rule us? They stuff ballot boxes with impunity, and if they are by some miracle caught, charged, and convicted, they'll be punished with a 90-day wrist-slap and a felony that would destroy an ordinary person's life but probably won't impede their work in politics at all.
And if you are sitting there smugly thinking that voter fraud controversies like this have no real impact, John Lott
points out that the Pennsylvania
State Senate changed party control due to voter fraud in 1994. Given how rarely these crimes are prosecuted, there are almost certainly other cases that we don't know about with similar impact.