Sunday, December 16, 2018

No More Rights Watch Column At Guns Magazine?


Readers of Guns Magazine will soon notice a longtime feature missing or changed. The Rights Watch column written and edited by David Codrea will be gone.

From David's blog War On Guns:
I received an email this morning from the editor at GUNS Magazine informing me "we are going a different direction with Rights Watch and will no longer need your column." This isn't that much of a surprise. I have actually been expecting the hammer to drop ever since they "parted ways" with my former editor and magazine mentor Jeff John earlier this year.

I know that I write for a niche within a niche and have a feeling that was a factor. It's their right to run their magazine as they see fit and I'll be interested to see what that "different direction" turns out to be.
As a longtime reader and subscriber to Guns Magazine I think this sucks. It was always one column that I didn't miss nor do I think one should miss. Given David's leading role along with the late Mike Vanderboegh and Dave Workman in exposing Operation Fast and Furious, it doesn't make sense to me. 

Government Still Doesn't Want To Discuss Fast And Furious



There are things that the US Government doesn't want discussed in open court and Operation Fast and Furious is one of them. This is true even in a criminal trial against a cartel boss. The cartel boss is question is Joaquin Archivaldo Guzman Loera aka El Chapo of the Sinoloa Cartel. Perhaps I should say that the government especially doesn't want to have any discussion of Operation Fast and Furious in a case involving the cartel which received the firearms.

Guzman was extradited to the United States in 2017 and is now on trial in US District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Judge Brian Cogan, a George W. Bush appointee, is the presiding judge in the case. Guzman's attorney is A. Eduardo Balarezo. He is a criminal defense attorney who handles Federal cases involving high profile defendants like Guzman. The prosecution team is headed by Richard Donoghue who is the US Attorney for the Eastern District.

The government has filed a motion in Limine to exclude questioning about Operation Fast and Furious. They are contending it will confuse the jury and prejudice the government's case against Guzman.
The defense strategy is transparent. Given the substantial number of articles that have been written about the Operation, many of which criticize the government’s handling of the movement of weapons from the United States into Mexico, the defense is attempting to use the well-known operation to place the government on trial. While the government will seek to introduce at trial seized weapons that had been identified by ATF agents within the scope of the Operation,1 any details about the Operation itself are completely irrelevant to the issues at trial under Rule 401 of the Federal Rules of Evidence and should be excluded on those grounds alone. To the extent that the details of the Operation are in any way relevant, pursuant to Federal Rule of Evidence 403, any minimal relevance would be greatly outweighed by the substantial risk of misleading the jury and unfair prejudice against the government.

The government respectfully seeks a ruling at this time precluding any further mention of the Operation, and in so doing, incorporates by reference its previous arguments in its Motions in Limine, Dkt. Nos. 213, 326. In light of the extensive reporting on the Operation, repeated references to the Operation in defense cross-examination questions create a substantial risk of tainting the jury, even if government objections to the questions are sustained by the Court and the witnesses are not required to answer the objectionable questions.
Judge Cogan had denied an earlier attempt to exclude this under the grounds that it was premature. From what I can tell, he has not ruled on this attempt to exclude this from being heard by the jury. Many of the orders are either restricted or under seal and cannot be seen by the general public, i.e, me and thee.

The New York Daily News is reporting on the trial including the motion by the government to exclude this information. Like most of the mainstream media, they are still referring to it as a "botched sting" operation. As Kurt Hofmann wrote over seven years ago, the only thing botched was the cover-up. It was true then and it is still true today.

Friday, December 14, 2018

Elizabeth Warren Is More Native American Than I Am


I got my results back from Ancestry.com DNA and despite what my cousin Van led me to believe I am not more Native American than Elizabeth Warren. I know that was a low threshold. My cousin had led me to believe that our great-grandfather on my paternal and his maternal grandfather's side of the family had some Cherokee blood.

According to the results shown below I am 64% Irish and Scots and 36% Welsh and English. Given I know that three out of four great-grandparents on my mom's side of the family were born in County Cavan, Ireland, this makes sense. Moreover, my Grandma Richardson's maiden name was Morgan which is a good Welsh name.




I really did want to have more Native American blood than Elizabeth Warren just to say I did. Oh, well. Our ancestors are our ancestors and there is nothing one can do to change that.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

"Murphy Mags" And How To Avoid Arrest In New Jersey


As of Monday, December 10th, if you possess a standard capacity magazine that holds more than 10 rounds in the state of New Jersey, you could be found guilty of a Class 4 Felony, spend up to 18 months in prison, lose your voting rights, and be subject to a lifetime ban on firearm ownership. Your options were to destroy the magazines, turn them into police, or remove them out of state. There was no grandfathering under the law nor was there any compensation for what arguably is a taking.

Gun rights attorney Evan F. Nappen is the acknowledged authority on New Jersey gun law. He has just written a guide on what to expect from the police and prosecutors and how to protect yourself.

Here are the action steps he encourages all New Jersey gun owners to take:
Action Items:
  1. Make sure that your friends and family are aware of this potential threat.
  2. Make sure that your friends and family are aware of the implications of talking with the police and consenting to searches.
  3. Make sure that you do not have in your possession any Murphy Mags or other prohibited items.
  4. Make sure that you, your family and your friends have the mindset to stand on your rights!
 While he thinks police raids are not likely to occur and that police will use other means such as computerized databases, demand letters, and the like, there are scenarios and reasons, in his opinion, where a police raid, with or without a warrant, might take place.

  1. Some highly publicized mass shooting occurs, and the knee-jerk, politically expedient reaction is to go after Murphy Mag possessors.
  2. Murphy’s failure to aggressively enforce his ban, gives his political challengers the opportunity to call him out on it. There is already pressure on Murphy to explain how he intends to enforce the ban. Breitbart News also reached out to Murphy’s press secretary, Daniel Bryan, about enforcement of the ban. He confirmed that the Governor “…had not ruled out house-to-house enforcement of the ban either.”
  3. New Jersey has a computerized database of registered gun owners & their registered handguns which includes make and model. Many of these handguns came with Murphy Mags. For example, 15 round magazines came standard with the Glock Model 19, Beretta Model 92 and SIG Model P226, just to name three commonly possessed handguns.
  4. New Jersey has a long history of abusing gun owners, creating “gun law victims” (destroying people’s lives with arbitrary gun laws) and undermining Second Amendment rights.
  5. New Jersey has a liberal news media which actively acts as the propaganda arm for the anti-gun-rights movement.
  6. New Jersey law enforcement will obey orders and enforce the law, rather than lose their jobs & pensions.
I suggest reading Evan's entire guide posted to his website. Moreover, if you live in New Jersey, I suggest studying it carefully, plan your response in advance, and make your family including kids aware of the family plan. As Michael Bane said on his podcast today, the law isn't enforced until is. Don't be that guy who Murphy uses as the example to cow the rest of New Jersey gun owners into compliance.

Sanctimonious Enviromentalism


I am all for conservation and the wise use of resources. I turn off the lights when I leave a room, I repair my leaky faucets, I reuse cardboard boxes or give them to small businesses who can, and I try to recycle most of the junk mail that comes into our house. That said, I don't wear this on my sleeve as some environmental badge of honor. It is just part of my frugal nature given I was raised by parents who came of age during the Great Depression.

That is probably why the sanctimony of the owner of a Chevy Volt electric car with this license plate ticked me off.




That car is no more solar powered than my Honda Pilot. Electric cars like the Volt depend upon power generation plants that are powered primarily by fossil fuels. In our region, Duke Energy is the electric utility providing power. Other than a few hydro plants with minimal megawatt capacity (most in the single digit megawatt capacity), power is supplied by coal fired plants in Asheville and Cliffside. The Asheville plant is converting to natural gas but that still is a fossil fuel. The coal ash remnants are a sore spot for Duke Energy and have been a source of fodder for Democrat politicians.

Your car may put out no exhaust but that doesn't mean it doesn't pollute. The moment you hook that Chevy Volt up to an electrical outlet, you are entering a pollution creating system. I'm not going to even get into a discussion of the heavy metals in the batteries in that car nor the power that was used in its manufacture of the Volt.

UPDATE: Thanks to the comment from BAP45, I found this clip from South Park's Smug Alert episode. It was from Season 10, Episode 2. I haven't watched South Park in years and had forgotten how wonderfully subversive it was.


Sunday, December 9, 2018

Arts & Crafts On A Snowy Day


The Complementary Spouse is spending this snowy day crafting. It got me to thinking I ought to do some arts and crafts as well. I think I'll finish the lower for my 6.8 SPC II build. I've had the upper for a few years but haven't gotten around to building a dedicated lower for it. No time like the present!



Friday, December 7, 2018

A Day That Will Live In Infamy Plus 77 Years




Today marks the 77th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. It is also marks the first time that a surviving member of the crew of the USS Arizona will not be in Hawaii to commemorate the event.

From the news reports:
No one who survived the bombing of the USS Arizona battleship will be in the audience.

“This is the very first year,” said Daniel Martinez, historian with the World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument.

Health issues and doctor's orders prevented Lou Conter from coming.

“She said you cannot go. You better cancel out,” he said in telephone interview from his home in California.

Conter is 97. The handful of survivors of the battleship’s sinking are all in their 90s...

About 300 USS Arizona sailors survived Japan’s surprise attack.

Only five are alive: Conter, Don Stratton, Ken Potts, Lonnie Cook and Lauren Bruner.

The hatred and enmity between the two countries is in the past. Now you have survivors who fought on each side coming together in ceremonies like the Blacked Canteen ceremony which celebrates peace and reconciliation.


What Caliber For Yeti?





If the weather models are correct and the hyperbole from local TV and the Weather Channel is not hyperbole, Western North Carolina is about to be hit with a snow storm that will rival the Blizzard of '93. Hospitals are implementing emergency management plans, bread is getting hard to find even as far east as Charlotte, and people have started testing their generators.

This all leads to the obvious question:  what caliber for yeti?

Can you get by with 5.56 in your AR or will you need to up your game? Does it require a purpose-built caliber like .358 Yeti from Mad Dog Weapon Systems or is that overkill?

If you have suggestions, please post them.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

These 62 Had The Courage Of Their Convictions



Do you have the courage of your convictions with regard to the Second Amendment? Would you go to the mattresses to use a term from The Godfather?  Would you put your job at risk or would you just quietly suck it up?

62 former employees of Dick's Sporting Goods and their Field and Stream subsidiary did have the courage of their convictions. After Dick's CEO Ed Stack not only changed the company's policy on selling modern sporting rifles and raised the purchase age to 21 for all firearms but fully bought into the gun control agenda, these 62 resigned their jobs.

From the Pittsburgh Business Times:
According to CEO Ed Stack, 62 employees quit working for Dick's Sporting Goods over the retailer's decision to stop selling assault-style weapons, announced in February....

"We anticipated that there would be some people that would leave. We've got 40,0000 employees, and 2,500, or 2,6000 (sic) people working at our corporate headquarters," said Stack, of the Findlay-based company. "We're a cross-section of the country. We knew people would be upset."
His comments came in a Wall Street Journal CEO Council interview. An excerpt of that interview is below.



Stack says it is OK to have differing views and he is correct. However, it is one thing to have differing views on whether the Steelers or the Eagles are the better team and a whole another thing to have differing views on working to suppress a right enumerated in the Bill of Rights.

What Stack did not say was who they were and what jobs they held. Some, like the clerk he mentioned, probably held low level jobs. Other I'm guessing held higher positions. While I don't have any confirmation of it, I wouldn't be surprised to learn that Jack Barnes who is the new VP for Commercial Sales for Sig Sauer was one of those 62. He had developed and implemented the concept of the Field and Stream stores for Dick's.

These 62 former employees put skin in the game and stood for the Constitution when the head of the company they worked for decided it was politically expedient to trash it. They are to be applauded. If I owned a company in the firearms industry I'd be looking for these 62 as they would be the kind of employees I'd want.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

The Evolution Of The Magazine Pull


Magazine pulls or those attachments used to facilitate pulling a magazine out of the ammo pouch have certainly undergone quite an evolution.

It started with some soldier or marine who had the idea to use flattened 550 paracord to fashion an easier way to pull their magazines out of their Alice-clipped mag pouch.



Somewhere along the line, it advanced to making "e-pulls" using three pieces of flattened paracord along with duct tape. The center section was fused together using a household iron.


I don't know if it was the first or second iteration that gave Richard Fitzpatrick the idea to create the original MagPul or not but create it he did. An entire company and industry followed from that.

The Magpul Ranger Plate in its many variations followed about five years later. It traded out the magazine's original floor plate for a new one which incorporated the loop or pull. They are now made for a variety of magazine styles including the original aluminum GI mags and, of course, all the variants of the PMag. Other variations include the MagPod (not made by Magpul) which turned the Ranger Plate in a "foot" providing stability when shooting.

Just like as with immigrants where the first generation worked as laborers and each succeeding generation moved further and further away from manual labor, so, too, it is with magazine pulls. A Japanese airsoft company, Echigoya Guns & Military Hobby Shop, has created an "interesting" variation on the first-gen MagPul. It is the perfect fashion accessory for your tacticool AR.




As best as I can tell - given I don't read Japanese - these sell for ¥1,000 - ¥1,200 or about $8 to $10 US at current exchange rates. Echigoya does have a website and they do take credit cards. These might make the perfect accessory to go with your Kalashnikitty t-shirt (if you can still find one).

Monday, December 3, 2018

Well That Explains It!


If you have ever taken a firearm apart for cleaning or tried to assemble your own AR lower, you have had a part or two that flew off and was damn near impossible to find. We have all experienced it at some time or another.

Today, I read the best explanation as to why these small parts like a detent pin and detent spring are impossible to find after being launched into near space from your kitchen table or workbench. It has nothing to with their size but everything to do with Einsteinian physics.

The reason those parts that go flying are almost never found - because a spring is causing the flying, they accelerate rapidly. In fact they reach a very high speed, almost the speed of light. At the speed of light, time shifting starts to occur. So those parts are time traveling. Sometime the parts aren't there yet when you look for them. Maybe try next week...

Brian in MI

Time traveling parts. Well that explains it. I guess I need to move my thought processes beyond that of Newtonian physics.