Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Federal Lawsuit Filed Against Washington State's I-594 On Vagueness Grounds

The Second Amendment Foundation has filed suit in Federal court against portions of Washington State's Initiative 594. The suit charges that the new law infringes on the Second and Fourteenth Amendments of the US Constitution as well as on portions of the Washington State Constitution.

They also allege that the new law is so vague that, "a person of ordinary intelligence cannot understand its scope, which renders it subject to arbitrary enforcement." They go on to add, "The agencies of the State of Washington have so far either disclaimed the responsibility to interpret I-594 or provided interpretations that are so far removed from the language as to be useless."

The business plaintiffs include the Northwest School of Safety, Puget Sound Security, Inc., Pacific Northwest Association of Investors, and the Firearms Academy of Seattle. The individual plaintiffs include SAF's Alan Gottlieb, CalGun's Gene Hoffman, the Gottlieb Revocable Family Living Trust, Andrew Gottlieb, Daryl Lee, CCRKBA's legislative director Joe Waldron, and Xee Del Real. SAF is also a party to the suit.

The suit names Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson, the Attorney General's Office, and the head of the Washington State Patrol as the defendants. The suit seeks a preliminary and permanent injunction against the enforcement of I-594's amendments to RCW 9.41 as it relates to:
non-commercial transfers of firearms to private citizens who are otherwise qualified to possess firearms, or otherwise enforcing any policies, rules, or procedures prohibiting or otherwise restricting the non-commercial transfer of firearms to private citizens who are otherwise qualified to possess firearms.
 The suit entitled Northwest School of Security el al v Ferguson et al is being brought in US District Court for the Western District of Washington. A copy of the complaint can be found here.

The release from SAF is below:
BELLEVUE, WA – The Second Amendment Foundation today filed a lawsuit in federal district court in Tacoma, seeking a permanent injunction against enforcement of portions of Initiative 594, the 18-page gun control measure that took effect Dec. 4, alleging that “portions of I-594…are so vague that a person of ordinary intelligence cannot understand their scope,” and that other parts violate the Second Amendment outright.

Joining SAF in this action are the Northwest School of Safety, Puget Sound Security, Inc., the Pacific Northwest Association of Investors, the Firearms Academy of Seattle, six individual citizens including SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb and the Gottlieb Family Trust. They are represented by Seattle attorneys Steven Fogg and David Edwards, and Bellevue attorney Miko Tempski.

Named as defendants are Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Washington State Patrol Chief John Batiste, in their official capacities.

“We took this action due to the confusing and arbitrary language and nature of I-594,” Gottlieb explained. “Three of our plaintiffs, including my son, are residents of other states and cannot legally borrow handguns for personal protection while traveling in Washington. Under I-594, all transfers must be done through federally-licensed firearms dealers, but under federal law, dealers cannot legally transfer handguns to residents of other states. I-594 also essentially prohibits our non-resident plaintiffs from storing their own firearms here.

“This measure effectively infringes upon, if not outright prohibits, the exercise of their constitutionally-protected right to bear arms under the Second Amendment,” he added.

Gottlieb pointed to a recent directive from the state Department of Fish and Wildlife to its volunteer hunter education instructors regarding firearms transfers in class that amount to “straw-man transfers.” The lawsuit also notes that the State Patrol said it could not prove that a change of possession not covered by an I-594 exemption was a “transfer,” making enforcement of the new law “difficult if not impossible.”

“We’re not trying to stop background checks,” Gottlieb said. “We’re taking action against a poorly-written and unconstitutionally vague measure that criminalizes activities that are perfectly legal anywhere else in the country, thus striking at the very heart of a constitutionally-protected, fundamental civil right.”

I Don't Think ABC's David Muir Will Be Visiting These Folks In Georgia

ABC News' anchor David Muir has been in charge of a series called "Made in America". I'm guessing it has run for at least the last couple of years. I will give credit where credit is due - it has focused attention on the plight of US manufacturing and especially the small manufacturer. For example, after they pointed out the US Olympic Team that was outfitted with clothing made in China, the embarrassment brought some changes.

In the search for stuff that is still "Made in America", I've always thought that they should do a story on that quintessential product that is still made on our shores - the firearm. However on second thought, given it is David Muir, perhaps we can skip that.

I came across a video this morning from a Georgia company called Armageddon Gear. They manufacture everything from slings to rifle cases to chest rigs for the AK. The promo video discusses how they make their products and then how they take the time to make sure their employees understand how the gear is used.

I just don't see the well-coifed David Muir in his skinny jeans going down to Buena Vista, Georgia to go shooting with this group of bad-ass grannys.

Sunday, December 28, 2014


There is a new Twitter hashtag that is gaining currency thanks to the thin skins of the gun prohibitionists. It is #ImBlockedByShannonWatts. It got started after Shannon Watts tweeted that she was blocked by the National Rifle Association. You can see one of the many retweets of it below.

It turns out that Shannon Watts and her fellow gun prohibitionists are not so pristine when it comes to blocking opponents. Over the past few years, I found myself blocked first by the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence (sic) and then by Sarah Brady as you can see below.

I had been following Shannon Watts for a number of months now. It helps to keep an eye on the opposition and she (or some minion) seems to be quite active on Twitter. After seeing the #ImBlockedByShannonWatts hashtag on a tweet by Bob Owens of Bearing Arms, I got curious. Lo and behold I have made the esteemed company of those blocked by Shannon Watts! As a mere blogger I find this extremely gratifying.

Not only has Shannon blocked me but so has Moms Demand Action.

The background for the Moms Demand Action Twitter page happens to be from their little (and I do mean little) gathering in Indianapolis during the NRA Annual Meeting. That is when she refused to talk with Dana Loesch about derogatory remarks made against Dana by her. This is when she was also seen with "men in black" hired guns provided by Bloomberg.

I'm also blocked by Everytown Moms for Illegal Mayors.

Not wanting to feel left out, the Brady Campaign has also blocked me.

About the only other major, and I use that term loosely, gun prohibitionist organization that hasn't blocked me is the Violence Policy Center. Not that I'll ever agree with them but at least they have the courage of their convictions and don't block their opponents.

I think the NRA made a mistake by blocking Shannon Watts. The move reinforces her aura of being "just a stay-at-home mom" working for "gun safety". She is neither just a stay-at-home mom nor working for gun safety. She is the corporate shill for a meddling billionaire politician who wants to abrogate our constitutional rights.

I would encourage any gun rights activist who is active on Twitter to check to see if he or she is blocked by Shannon Watts (@shannonrwatts) or any of the gun prohibitionists organizations. If so, let the world know it by using the hashtag above. What Watts will call "bullying", I would call the truth.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

It Feels Right

Chris Muir at Day by Day Cartoon, as per usual, nails it. He calls out lefty filmmaker (and gun law violator) Rajina Sincic and Americans for Responsible Solutions as well as those SJW* who continue to perpetuate the U.Va. rape hoax story.

Courtesy of Chris Muir

After reading this cartoon, I have this running through my head! Listen at your own risk.

*SJW = Social Justice Warrior - I had to look up this acronym a few weeks ago after seeing it used frequently on Facebook. Those darn kids and their newfangled acronyms!

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to one and all.

While a bunch of amicus briefs were filed late yesterday in the Peruta case, they can wait for another day.

Today is about family and friends. And setting up new computers and train sets and fill in the blank.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Panteao Productions Added As New Sponsor

When I first started this blog in 2010, I was very reluctant to add any advertising. Over time my thinking changed. I saw that by adding selected sponsors I could raise money for pro-Second Amendment groups. I started with Lucky Gunner and have since added When the Balloon Goes Up and Amazon. While the money raised hasn't been overwhelming, it has resulted in significant donations towards pro-Second Amendment work.

Today I am adding Panteao Productions. They produce some of the best firearms training DVDs around. I have bought several of their Make Ready with the Experts DVDs over the last few years. Recently, they have added a subscription service to streaming videos as well as have expanded to Make Ready to Survive which emphasizes preparedness.

You can see the link below the Blog Archive.

Remember, it costs you nothing extra to purchase a Panteao DVD or subscription through this blog. However, each time you do purchase something, that means a not insignificant portion of your dollar goes to supporting the Second Amendment.

Panteao is currently offering many of their Make Ready with Experts DVDS at 30-50% off. Moreover, they are discounting their annual subscriptions by 25%. This gives you access to ALL of their videos.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

What Would Milo Think?

My best friend was a Cuban-American.

I first met Emilio Rodriguez in grad school at UNC-Chapel Hill in 1979. We were both students in the political science doctoral program. He in International Relations and me in Public Administration and Public Policy. He went on to get his PhD from Carolina while I got a wife and no degree. In fact, he was the one who introduced me to my late first wife Rosanne.

Milo went on to teach at the University of South Alabama, the American College of Switzerland, and finally at Mount Saint Mary's University in Emmitsburg, Maryland where he made an indelible mark on his students. He was leading a semester trip abroad in 2008 to Ireland  when he passed away from complications related to his kidney and pancreas transplant. Even now as I write this I am getting a lump in my throat and my eyes are moist.

Milo with his wife Amy, son John, and daughter in law Michelle.

While Milo was born in New Orleans to a Cuban dad and American mom, he spent much of his youth before the Cuban Revolution living in Havana. He had no love for Castro and the Communists.

Photo by Burt Glinn, Magnum Photos

I will always remember the stories Milo told about what it was like when the Communists came to power. The story that always resonated with me was about how they took his toy trains when he was an eight year old. They took them because Milo's family wasn't part of the proletariat.

What kind of people take a kid's toy trains in the name of La RevoluciĆ³n.

Now that Barack Obama has unilaterally re-established diplomatic relations with Cuba, I wonder what Milo would think. Milo was a pro-military, pro-gun kinda-liberal college professor who grew up in Miami and Madrid. He enjoyed Duke basketball, good cigars, good Scotch and cognac, military re-enacting, and girl watching. He may have said it was time or he may have said, "hell, no!". And frankly, I'll never know. As for me, I'm trending towards the "hell, no!" response so long as any Castro is alive and in power.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

I'll See Your Murthy And Raise You A McSally

The various gun prohibitionist groups were quick to claim victory over the confirmation of Dr. Vivek Murthy as the Surgeon General of the United States.

Mark Kelly (aka Mr. Gabby Giffords) said of the confirmation of Murthy that:
Tonight, the United States Senate did the responsible thing: It stood up to the gun lobby, stood up for common sense, and voted to ensure that the United States has a qualified medical professional as its top doctor.
Dan Gross, President of the Brady Campaign, was even more bombastic in his proclamations about Murthy's confirmation:
"This is a huge victory for Brady and for the public health and safety of our nation. Now we have a Surgeon General who recognizes that gun violence is a serious public health issue that America urgently needs to address,” said Dan Gross, President, Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. “This victory represents a major triumph over the corporate gun lobby ‘lap dogs’ in the Senate who fought to defeat Dr. Murthy’s confirmation on behalf of their billion-dollar benefactors...

Gross adds, “Dr. Murthy’s confirmation is part of an exciting, growing trend of victories for the American public over the interests and influence of the corporate gun lobby. In the recent elections, the voters of Washington state demonstrated where the American public stands on this issue by overwhelmingly passing expanded background checks. The American people know that gun violence is a public health issue and they support sensible measures to reduce gun deaths and injuries.”
PR professional mom Shannon Watts was not to be denied either. While Everytown Moms for Illegal Mayors had nothing on their official web page, they did say this on their Facebook page:
Yesterday the Senate stood up to the gun lobby and confirmed Dr. Vivek Murthy for Surgeon General.

The NRA strongly opposed Dr. Murthy because he dared to acknowledged that gun violence is a public health threat.Yesterday the Senate stood up to the gun lobby and confirmed Dr. Vivek Murthy for Surgeon General.

The gun lobby has spent decades trying to quash research into the causes and cures for gun violence--because the less we know about gun violence, the more the gun lobby can dictate public health policy
Even the lesser lights of the gun prohibitionist groups had to put in their two cents. The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence (sic) called it a "historic rebuke to the NRA". Meanwhile, the Violence Policy Center's Kristen Rand said "we applaud every senator who stood up to the gun lobby."

Murthy was going to be Surgeon General even if the lame ducks hadn't turned their back on their constituents and voted to confirm him. I have no doubt that Murthy would have been an another of President Obama's recess appointments.

While the gun prohibitionists have been exceedingly vocal over Murthy's confirmation, they have been equally as quiet over an event that happened yesterday. With the recount having been concluded in Arizona's Second Congressional District, Col. Martha McSally (USAF-Ret) was declared the winner by 167 votes over Democrat incumbent Ron Barber. She actually picked up six votes in the recount.

Lest anyone forget, McSally now represents Gabby Giffords' former congressional district. She ran on a pro-gun, balance the budget, and secure the borders platform. She was rated AQ and endorsed by the NRA-PVF.

Americans for Responsible Solutions waged a vicious campaign against McSally and still lost. They spent $2,007,611.68 in ads and mailings opposing McSally. This amount is just a little less than what the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee spent attacking McSally. ARS spent an additional $238,584 in support of Barber. This was a personal battle for Giffords and Kelly and they lost.

By contrast, "the corporate gun lobby" in the form of the NRA-Political Victory Fund spent the magnificent sum of $14,068.79 in support of McSally.

According to the Arizona Republic, Gabby Giffords and Mark Kelly did respond to McSally's electoral victory.
Giffords' group was criticized for running an ad that implied McSally didn't support gun background checks that might have prevented a woman from being murdered by a stalker. The group pulled the ad off the air after McSally said she had been a victim of stalking and supported banning stalkers from buying guns.

Giffords and her husband, Mark Kelly, said after McSally's victory was announced that they were glad the campaign included a debate over guns.

"We commend her for defying the corporate gun lobby on this important public-safety issue, and look forward to working with her to craft and help pass this badly needed legislation," Giffords and Kelly said in a written statement.

The National Rifle Association cast McSally's win as a rebuke to gun-control groups like Giffords'.

"Martha stood on principle and supported our constitutional freedoms, despite being relentlessly attacked by the gun-control movement," NRA Political Victory Fund Chairman Chris W. Cox said in a statement.
The response of Giffords and Kelly is not on the Americans for Responsible Solutions website and was probably the bare minimum they could do without looking like sore losers. As to the rest of the gun prohibitionists, no comment. I have checked all the usual suspects - their own websites, Facebook pages, and Twitter - and can't find a thing.

Rep.-elect McSally, a former A-10 Warthog pilot with combat hours, has been appointed to serve on the House Armed Services and House Homeland Security committees.

Comparing the appointment of Murthy with the election of McSally, I submit that McSally can make more of a difference. Murthy's position is primarily symbolic. The office of the Surgeon General no longer holds the power that it once had. To expect Murthy to make any pronouncement on any subject including guns without first checking with the White House is unrealistic. Moreover, his actual experience as a practicing physician is virtually nil. He is more of a politician and manager.

By contrast, McSally, while one of 435, does have a vote, can craft and submit legislation, and is under no obligation to coordinate with Speaker John Boehner on anything. Moreover, by virtue of her 26 years as a serving officer in the Air Force and her committee memberships, she should have an impact on both defense issues and border security.

While I could be wrong about the relative impacts of Murthy and McSally, I don't think so. If you think I'm wrong in my assessment, let me know in the comments.

Christmas Comes Early In California

Christmas came early for the CalGuns Foundation and its attorneys. Late yesterday, US District Court Judge Anthony Ishii awarded them attorney's fees and court costs in Sylvester v. Harris. This is the case that challenged California's 10-day waiting period as applied to certain classes of individuals. Judge Ishii had earlier found that the waiting period was unconstitutional as applied to those who possess California carry permits or own one firearm and have a "Certificate of Eligibility".

In determining the amount due for attorneys' fee, Judge Ishii considered the motions from both the plaintiffs and the defendants. For the senior attorneys, he ordered an hourly amount that was lower than requested but higher than what the California Department of Justice thought proper. As to the junior attorneys, he actually raised the hourly rate above what was requested by the plaintiffs.

The only unfortunate thing about this award of attorneys' fees is that it won't come out of Kamala Harris' personal bank account. It will be paid by the taxpayers of California. But hey, if you continue to elect people like Harris and the rest of her ilk, that is what you can expect.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Kudos To Ronnie Barrett And His Company

I came across this little tidbit today courtesy of Hershel at The Captain's Journal.

Barrett Firearms has signed a contract to export rifles to the Ukrainian state-run defense company Ukroboronprom.

From SputnikNews:
KIEV, December 12 (Sputnik) – The Ukrainian state-run defense concern Ukroboronprom said Friday its subsidiary Ukrinmash had signed a deal on small arms delivery with US Barrett Firearms.

"The representatives of company Ukrinmash – the leading exporter of the Ukroboronprom state concern – signed a contract with Barrett Firearms. Weapons will be delivered for the needs of Ukraine's Security Service and National Guard," Ukroboronprom said on its website.

Earlier, Ukrinmash has struck deals with another US company ATN, manufacturer of night vision optics and thermal imaging, and Thales Group, a French space, defense and security firm.

Barrett Firearms specializes in designing and manufacturing large-caliber rifles for the US military, law enforcement agencies, and civilian sport shooters in the United States and more than 73 other countries.
I'm glad to see Barrett, ATN, and the Thales Group are helping Ukraine stand up to Russian hegemony. I wish the US government had as much backbone as Ronnie Barrett.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Ordinary Tools And A Simple Method To Align Crosshairs On Your Scope

Simple is good if it works. Cheap and simple is even better. In the video below, Aram von Benedikt of Outdoor Life shows how to use common, everyday tools to get your rifle scope's crosshairs perfectly vertical.

The tools for von Benedikt's method would cost you less than $10 if you had to buy them new. This includes $2.25 for the plumb bob, $3.98 for the level, and about $3 for a small mill bastard file. The first two items were priced at Lowe's. I just paid $2.95 last weekend at a local surplus store for a Kobalt 6" file.

Compare this with the Wheeler Engineering Retical Leveling System. It is a very nice tool but it costs $49.99 from Brownells with the price at Amazon.com being a bit less.

So, you can go fancy with a purpose built tool or you can go simple with tools that have multiple uses around the house. The choice is yours.

Ruger Getting Into 10/22 After-Market Trigger Business

Ruger is getting into the 10/22 replacement trigger market. They just announced the BX-Trigger which is a drop-in trigger module for the 10/22. It reduces the trigger pull from approximately 6 pounds to 2.5 pounds. The BX-Trigger will go on the market starting this Friday. It will be available directly from Ruger and from many retailers. The MSRP on the BX-Trigger is $89.95.

If I had to guess, someone at Ruger realized that they could be making good money in the 10/22 after-market parts business that they were losing to companies like Volquartsen. I don't know without testing how the new BX-Trigger will compare to the Volquartsen components but the complete module sells for about what Volquartsen sells their match hammer and sear.

The release from Ruger is below:
Sturm, Ruger & Company, Inc. (NYSE: RGR) announces the launch of the BX-Trigger™: a light, crisp, “drop-in” replacement trigger assembly that is compatible with all Ruger® 10/22® rifles and 22 Charger™ pistols. The BX-Trigger is a Genuine Ruger Factory Accessory and is the perfect upgrade for all 10/22 rifles and 22 Charger pistol models because of the significantly reduced pull weight of approximately 2.75 pounds (versus 6 pounds on the standard 10/22 trigger).

“We have made continuous improvements to the 10/22 over the years, but the BX-Trigger is an exciting performance advancement,” said Ruger President and COO, Chris Killoy. “The BX-Trigger was designed for easy installation, superior performance, and legendary Ruger reliability. Like the popular BX-25® magazine for the 10/22, the BX-Trigger will deliver the excellence and value that shooters have come to expect from Ruger.”

The BX-Trigger is sold as a complete assembly that “drops in” to replace the existing trigger assembly, with no additional adjustment or “fitting” required. A video of the installation process can be found at Ruger.com/BX-Trigger

Beginning December 19, the Ruger BX-Trigger will be available for purchase directly from Ruger at ShopRuger.com or from local independent firearms retailers.

Monday, December 15, 2014

The Triumph Of The Lame Ducks

The Senate voted at 5:59pm EST to confirm Dr. Vivek Murthy as the next Surgeon General of the United States. The final vote was 51 in favor with 43 opposed and 6 not voting. The confirmation of Dr. Murthy could be called the triumph of the lame ducks.

In March, the nomination of Murthy was dead in the water. It was going nowhere because a number of red-state Democrats were up for re-election and knew voting for Murthy would have been the kiss of death.

From the New York Times on March 14th:
The nominee, Dr. Vivek H. Murthy, an internist and political ally of the president’s, has come under criticism from the National Rifle Association, and opposition from the gun-rights group has grown so intense that it has placed Democrats from conservative states, several of whom are up for re-election this year, in a difficult spot.

Senate aides said Friday that as many as 10 Democrats are believed to be considering a vote against Dr. Murthy, who has voiced support for various gun control measures like an assault weapons ban, mandatory safety training and ammunition sales limits.
Liberal journalist Dave Weigel attributes the death of the filibuster to putting the pressure on these Democrats. They could no longer hide behind a Republican filibuster to avoid taking a position.

Presumably the 10 Democrats including such "pro-Second Amendment stalwarts" as Kay Hagan, Mark Pryor, Mark Begich, Mary Landrieu, and possibly Mark Udall who all lost re-election in November.

It's funny how a politician's true colors come out when either they don't face an election for a number of years or they are being sent home by the voters.

Only three Democrats voted against Murthy:  Joe Donnelly (D-IN), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), and Joe Manchin (D-WV). And the rest, including Hagan, Pryor, Begich, Landrieu, and Udall voted for Murthy.

Murthy's confirmation was the triumph of the lame ducks. Their vote was a big "f*%k you" to the voters of their home states who had just turned them out of office.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Vote On Obama's Anti-Gun Surgeon General Choice This Week

Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) will be pushing the vote on Dr. Vivek Murthy this coming week. According to the tweet posted on Saturday by Adam Jentleson, Reid's Communications Director, the vote on cloture will be this week. Thanks to a change in a Senate rules pushed through by Reid last year, Murthy nomination will only need a simple majority to invoke cloture and be confirmed.

Reid is evidently trying to make the most of his remaining time as Majority Leader. Murthy cleared a procedural vote on Saturday by a vote of 52-40 that allows his nomination to come to a vote. Voting in favor of bringing his nomination to a vote include so-called pro-Second Amendment lame duck Democrats Kay Hagan (D-NC), Mark Pryor (D-AR), Mary Landrieu (D-LA), and Mark Begich (D-AK). It is interesting to see how being a lame duck brings out their true colors.

Dr. Vivek Murthy co-founded Doctors for Obama in 2008 which later became Doctors for America. He is profoundly anti-gun and views firearm ownership as a public health issue.

From the NRA-ILA on Murthy's nomination and his anti-gun views:
A recent letter sent to Congress by "Doctors for America," and signed by Dr. Murthy, urges mandatory licensing "for anyone purchasing guns and ammunition--including mandatory firearm safety training and testing." Under Dr. Murthy's scheme, further regulations would place "limits on the purchase of ammunition," and establish a "mandatory waiting period of at least 48 hours."

In the letter, Dr. Murthy also advocates for a "federal ban on the sale" of popular semi-automatic firearms and their ammunition, and proposes a "buyback" of these popular types of firearms to "reduce the number… that are currently in circulation." Even some of the most ardent anti-gun researchers, along with the Department of Justice, have admitted the futility of gun "buyback" programs.

Another of Dr. Murthy's proposals would strip vital privacy protections put in place to protect firearm owners and prevent the fracturing of physician-patient relationships. The letter, for example, calls for removing "the provision in the Affordable Care Act and other federal policies that prohibit physicians from documenting gun ownership." While some advocates of the ACA had argued the provision prohibiting such documentation was unnecessary, given that the ACA had nothing to do with guns, Dr. Murthy obviously sees the ACA as playing a role in gun control.

And, in late 2012 and early 2013, Dr. Murthy took to his personal Twitter account to promote his gun control beliefs, including a statement on October 16, 2012, that "Guns are a health care issue."
While the Surgeon General has no real power to effect change, he can use the position as a bully pulpit to push issues.

I'd suggest a call and email to your two Senators ASAP. You can get a list of their phone numbers and email contact pages here. Even if you know your Senators are anti-gun, call or email anyway. It still puts them on notice.

UPDATE: A copy of the letter that the NRA-ILA's Chris Cox sent to Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell regarding Murthy can be seen here. The most salient takeaway from the letter is that they are going to score the vote on Murthy. Of course, this means nothing to the Democrats who lost but at least it should hold the Republicans in line.

A Lesson In Pronunciation

To help you with the proper pronunciation of certain firearms, OutdoorHub created this YouTube video. I think I knew some of them but it is always helpful to be reminded. That said, I think so long as both the sender and receiver can properly encode and decode the message that is all that matters.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

For Revolver Fans

Grant Cunningham, revolversmith extraordinaire and personal defense trainer, has created a quick and easy way to carry speed-loaders concealed. The Crossbreed Speedloader Case attaches to your belt and keeps the speedloader right at your waistline.

In the video below, Grant shows the details of the case and how to effectively use it.

The Speedloader Case comes in either black cowhide or natural horsehide. It retails for $36.95 with the horsehide being $2 more. For those that carry a revolver concealed, I think this should be a useful addition to your rig.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

In Seattle, The Rich Vote For Gun Control But Buy Their Own Cops

I get a lot of emails from the various financial planning publications. Sometimes they are touting a certain mutual fund company and sometimes they are little news stories about HNW individuals. Translating from finance-speak, that means high net worth individuals aka the wealthy.

A story in Financial Advisor about the Seattle wealthy caught my eye yesterday and spurred me to do some research. The gist of the story is that Seattle suffers the top property crime rate in the country and that certain wealthy neighborhoods have taken to hiring a force of off-duty police officers and private security guards to watch over their neighborhood.
After Seattle Times columnist Danny Westneat wrote about how the police largely disregarded his family's repeated calls about car thieves in his neighborhood, a resident of the city’s tony Laurelhurst section dropped him a note.

"I bet if you had been in Laurelhurst, somebody would have come," the reader wrote. "Your mistake was being in a regular part of town."

Turns out that Laurelhurst, the neighborhood where Bill Gates was born and lived until about 1994, isn't completely satisfied with its police protection, either. In fact, it has hired its own security force.

Exasperated with a spate of car break-ins, the neighborhood adopted its strategy from Windermere, an even more exclusive neighborhood directly north, where homeowners pay an annual $575 fee that mostly goes toward having off-duty police and private security guards patrol year-round.

Seattle has the top property crime rate in the country, the Seattle Times reported recently. It’s more than double the Boston area's rate and almost one-third higher than the rate for the Denver area.

Laurelhurst's security force consists of off-duty policemen who keep the neighborhood under surveillance six nights per week in five-hour shifts, and also conduct foot patrols when residents are on vacation. One of the city's off-duty bicycle cops also rides around the neighborhood during the day—something that helps with the now ubiquitous package theft that appears to be a result of faux dog walkers following UPS trucks to their delivery destinations.

Although the off-duty cops wear their official uniforms and carry police radios and firearms, they drive their personal—that is, unmarked—cars. They monitor incoming 911 calls and work with on-duty police officers if there’s an incident.

"We don't expect them to catch people," says Brian McMullen, who sits on the neighborhood council and helps oversee the crime program. "We view it as a deterrent."
Knowing that Seattle and King County provided the base of supported for Washington State's I-594 gun control initiative, I wondered how these areas voted. Did they jump on the gun control bandwagon along with the majority of Seattle residents? Moreover, how much money did residents of the area donate to the gun control front group Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility?

Let's take the last question first. Residents in these neighborhoods live in the 98105 zip code. Donations to the Washington Alliance for Gun Responsibility totaled $179,305. Donors included Bill Gates, Sr. who gave $500. That $500 contribution by one individual was more than all the donations to the pro-gun group Protect Our Gun Rights combined. Those donations totaled a mere $335. Put in relative terms, pro-gun contributions totaled two-tenths of one percent of the amount donated to the anti-gun forces.

Overall, the vote for I-594 in King County was 74.99% in favor and 25.01% opposed. Statewide, the numbers were 59.27% in favor with 40.73 opposed to more gun control.

So how did the two neighborhoods, Laurelhurst and Windermere, vote? It took some doing but I was able to identify the relevant voting precincts from the election district maps and pull the data from eCanvass file.

Windermere's eight precincts had a total of 2,101 people vote in I-594 contest. Of these, 1,856 voted yes on I-594. That 88.3% is significantly higher percentage than King County as a whole.

Laurelhurst's 11 precincts went even higher in their support of I-594. 2,181 or 89.1% of the 2,448 votes cast on the initiative were in favor of it.

I guess if you are sitting in your (multi) million dollar home in Laurelhurst or Windermere with security provided by off-duty police, you don't really worry how the riff-raff provides for their security. You are protected and they can pretty much go to hell for all you care. So what if it is harder for them to get the tools to protect themselves and their families. You got yours and that is all that matters.

This Is Why It's Called Fiction

The quote below is from Chapter 3 of Ruthless - The Blackwell Files Book 2. It is a book of fiction by author Steve Freeman. He says this series of novels are from "his firsthand knowledge of military service, the tech industry, and the diverse cultures of our world".
After a bit of research and the purchase of a masterfully-produced set of faked credentials, (the killer) used the forged documents and a Visa gift card to buy a used Smith & Wesson through one online retailer, and a compatible silencer via a different online site. (The killer) had the purchases shipped to an abandoned house, allowing for a an anonymous, nighttime pickup of both items.
While our enemies in the gun prohibitionist movement would like to believe the above is reality, it is utter fiction. You know it, I know it, and the author of the book hopefully knew it.

Unless it was an intrastate transaction, firearm sales go through a FFL and get a NICS check before delivery to the purchaser. As to the silencer, you are looking at a $200 tax stamp plus a generously estimated 6 month wait for the background check. You also have to submit photos.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

A Day That Shall Leave In Infamy, 73rd Anniversary

Today marks the 73rd anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. I like to honor this day by remembering those veterans - Army, Navy, and Marine - who were there on that fateful day as well as those stationed on Wake Island and in the Philippines. These vets are dying out daily and the time will shortly come when no one who faced the waves of Japanese bombers will still be alive. So if you know one of these vets, take the time today to thank them for their service.

Magazine of the USS Shaw exploding after being hit by a bomb

More of these photos can be seen here.

That generation of men and women would go into action to avenge these losses and they would win.

A Treasure Trove Of Gun Contests

Aaron at the Weapon-Blog has assembled a treasure trove of contests offering firearms and other stuff for December.

There are 12 pistols including Sigs, Springfields,a Walther PPQ, a Glock 42, and a number of 1911s.

Add to this 21 rifles ranging from a Daniel Defense DDM4V9 AR to the IWI Tavor. There are also a bunch of bolt action hunting rifles.

Add into this "accessories" including high-end optics, suppressors, and even a GMC Sierra.

You can find this treasure trove here.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Sua Sponte Call For Peruta En Banc Hearing

Under the General Orders of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, any judge in the circuit may call sua sponte for an en banc rehearing of a case. What this means translated into ordinary language, any judge, active or senior, within the 9th Circuit, can make the call for a en banc rehearing on his own behalf without any request from either the plaintiff or defendant.

And this is just what has happened in the case of Peruta v. San Diego. The parties involved have been ordered to file briefs within 21 days saying why or why not this case should be given an en banc rehearing. Amicus briefs may also be submitted within this 21 days period.

Professor Eugene Volokh, while surprised that this happened with Peruta, notes the reasoning behind this call.
This sort of “sua sponte” call for rehearing en banc, even without a petition, is a pretty well-settled procedure, though not one that’s often used. Opinions of three-judge panels in the Ninth Circuit are binding on all future three-judge panels, and can only be reversed by en banc rehearing (or, of course, by the Supreme Court). As a result, even if the parties are content with the result of an opinion, and don’t seek rehearing, each judge has his own interest in the precedents set by his colleagues. Judges are therefore allowed to seek en banc rehearing (which will be granted if a majority of active judges agree to rehear the case), regardless of whether the parties file petitions for such rehearing.
Given the strong Second Amendment rationale in the Peruta decision by Judge O'Scannlain, I'm guessing some of the more liberal judges on the 9th Circuit don't want to be bound by it. After all, the 9th Circuit has a reputation as the most liberal circuit. Only 18 out of the 38 current active judges - those not having senior status - were appointed by Republican presidents.

Voting on whether or not to grant an en banc rehearing will be by all of the active judges on the 9th Circuit. If a majority approves the rehearing then, under 9th Circuit rules, a panel consisting of the Chief Judge and 10 other active judges will sit en banc and rehear the case. The 10 judges are chosen at random from among the active judges on the Circuit. The Chief Judge as of December 1st is Judge Sidney Thomas - the dissenter in the Peruta case and a Bill Clinton appointee from Montana.

I should emphasize that the Peruta case hasn't gone to an en banc rehearing yet but that it could go to one if a majority of the judges call for it. We shall see.

H/T Sebastian

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

And Now You Know The Rest Of The Story

The late radio broadcaster Paul Harvey used to have a feature called, "The Rest of the Story". He'd end the feature with the tagline, "And now you know the rest of the story." I saw the tweet below from Shannon Watts of Everytown Moms for Illegal Mayors yesterday. Just like Al Sharpton demands "Justice!", Shannon demands "Gunsense!".

This is not just some Walmart store. This is my Walmart store. The one that is a five minute or less drive from my house. The one at which I buy ammo if it is in stock. In other words, I know the store and I know the gun counter. Both ammo and firearms are kept in a locked case and only certain employees have the key.

The story as reported involved the theft of an AR-15 and 150 rounds of ammunition from the locked case on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. The thief purportedly shoved the rifle down his pants and just walked out.

And now for the rest of the story.

Donald Alan Skelton, 33, was arrested on Thursday as he went back to the same Walmart. According to records from the NC Department of Public Safety, Skelton was released from prison in February. His criminal record goes back to at least 2008 and includes convictions for felony breaking and entering and for being a felon in possession of a firearm.

For this theft, Skelton was charged with larceny of a firearm, misdemeanor larceny, and possession of a firearm by a felon. He is being held in the Buncombe County Detention Center under an $11,000 bond.

Watts got 28 retweets and 7 favorites from this tweet. How the theft of a firearm by a convicted felon relates to "gunsense" and the call for universal background checks is beyond me.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Oh, Canada! Please Keep The Liberals As The Loyal Opposition

I would think most people would want important decisions left in the hands of elected representatives and not in the hands of faceless bureaucrats. After all, a politician can be turned out of office while the bureaucracy lives on forever.

Not so the Liberal Party in Canada. They are quite upset that Stephen Harper and his Conservative government want to remove the power of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to make determinations on which firearms should be prohibited. As can be seen in the poster they put up on Facebook, they consider it "unacceptable".

The Liberal Party is the official opposition in the Canadian Parliament and is led by Justin Trudeau. His father, the late Pierre Trudeau, was Prime Minister of Canada from 1968-1979 and from 1980-1984. While serving as Justice Minister, the elder Trudeau introduced Bill C-150 which established a good deal of the gun control in Canada including the non-restricted, restricted, and prohibited categories of firearms.

Their official statement in opposition to Bill C-42 says, in part:
“First, it eliminates the need for owners of prohibited and restricted firearms to have a transportation license to carry those guns in their vehicles. This means they could freely transport handguns or automatic weapons anywhere within their province, whether to a grocery store or a soccer field.

“Secondly, it would take the power to classify firearms out of the hands of the police – the experts in keeping Canadians safe – and put it in the hands of politicians like Stephen Harper. And it would allow those decisions to be made without Parliamentary approval or oversight.

“We think Canadians will agree that this is wrong.
Somehow I doubt Canadian gun owners would consider this wrong.

Bill C-42, the Common Sense Firearms Licensing Act, was introduced in October by Minister for Public Safety Steven Blaney (middle picture in the poster).  The bill had its Second Reading on November 26th.

Here is a quick outline of what Bill C-42 would do from the Canadian Shooting Sports Association.

  • Create a six-month grace period at the end of the five-year licence period to stop people from immediately becoming criminalized for paperwork delays around license renewals;
  • Streamline the licensing system by eliminating the Possession Only Licence (POL) and converting all existing POLs to Possession and Acquisition Licences (PALs);
  • Make classroom participation in firearms safety training mandatory for first-time licence applicants;
  • Amend the Criminal Code to strengthen the provisions relating to orders prohibiting the possession of firearms where a person is convicted of an offence involving domestic violence;
  • End needless paperwork around Authorizations to Transport by making them a condition of a licence for certain routine and lawful activities;
  • Provide for the discretionary authority of Chief Firearms Officers to be subject to limit by regulation;
  • Authorize firearms import information sharing when restricted and prohibited firearms are imported into Canada by businesses; and,
  • Allow the Government to have the final say on classification decisions, following the receipt of independent expert advice.
This bill is, from what I can gather, a start. Neither the Coalition for Gun Control nor the National Firearms Association are altogether happy with Bill C-42. The former opposes the bill because it relaxes some gun control measures. The latter has decided not to endorse the bill because it doesn't address what they consider the many significant problems with Canada's firearms regulation. These include decriminalizing firearms possession, addressing regulations that classify firearms by their appearance, and eliminating the punitive safe storage requirements from the criminal code.

Like all bills reforming existing gun controls, it doesn't go far enough. However, if passed, at least Canada can say it is no longer the New Jersey of the North when it comes to firearms transport.