A difficult concept
It seems the police are more interested in pushing the bounds of the Constitution
than they are in respecting the privacy rights of the people. The latest example of this is a case wherein police mounted a covert video surveillance camera to a pole outside a man's home and watched all of his activities for a month without any warrant whatsoever. When the man, an alleged illegal immigrant, used a firearm to peacefully shoot at targets in his back yard, he was arrested for possessing the firearm based on the video surveillance. The Electronic Frontier Foundation has filed an amicus brief in the case
Undetectable Firearms Act passes House
This is a renewal
of a longstanding ban on all-plastic firearms. It was originally passed as a hysterical reaction to the introduction of plastic-grip firearms (GLOCK being the prime example, with many others following in their footsteps). In that context it was completely meaningless, as all firearms manufactured at the time contained enough metal in their magazines, barrels, and other working parts to easily set off a metal detector.
It has gained additional relevance lately due to the development of functional 3D-printed plastic firearms. Though these firearms are barely a notch above a toy -- being marginally safe to fire once, depending on material, and definitely unsafe to fire multiple times -- they do add an element of reality to the previously completely fantastical idea of an "undetectable" plastic firearm. Of course, that must also be tempered by the fact that these "plastic" firearms still require a metal firing pin and a significant financial and intellectual investment (in acquiring a 3D printer and learning to print the designs). Not to mention, firing ammunition made of metal.
In other words, the actual threat posed by "undetectable" 3D-printed plastic firearms is negligible. When the law originally passed, it could fairly be said that it banned a gun that didn't exist. Today, it bans a gun that for all practical purposes
Simply put, this is not the legislation to get worked up about. It's silly, but it does little harm. If the Senate amends the bill rather than passing an identical version, that's the version we need to stop.
... because no one wants to take your guns, they just want to do stuff like this
The second amendment of the Constitution of the United States, being no longer necessary to a secure state is hereby nullified.
The production and sale of new firearms, being defined as a rifle, pistol, or other gun, will be disallowed until a time in which the number of firearms in circulation is equal to 50% of the population as determined by the Census.
No gun may reside in the same building as anyone who has failed a mental health evaluation, as performed by a medical professional, as approved by the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare).
A mental health examination, as performed by a medical professional approved by the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) must be passed in order to receive a firearms license.
An income tax equal to 4% of an individual's income will be assessed upon all gun owners. In states which were at any point in time a part of the Confederate States of America, this tax shall be equal to 10% of an individual's income. Taxes levied under this amendment shall be appropriated in equal portions to programs to expand Affirmative Action programs and begin to pay reparations to the descendants of African slaves.
Any person making the choice to own a firearm must carry $250,000 worth of liability insurance for each weapon owned. This insurance must be provided by a publicly owned insurance company to be established.
All firearms must be retrofitted with both a global positioning transmitter as well as a fingerprint activated locking mechanism. Failure to comply with this provision will result in a fine, prison time, and forfeiture of the privilege of firearm ownership.
The National Rifle Association, Michigan Militia, and other "Ågun rights"Â groups shall be considered terrorist operations.
United States Marshals will be randomly placed at various "sporting venues",Â where a firearm could be otherwise legally discharged. This could include publicly or privately owned venues where the following (but not limited to) take place: hunting areas, shooting ranges.
In a calendar year, no person may buy more than 100 rounds of ammunition.
Assault rifles, semi-automatic, and automatic weapons, as well as those not fitted with GPS and trigger locking devices will be immediately seized by the government. The owner will be compensated fair market value of the weapon, minus the cost of the seizure operation.
President Obama will establish a Secretary of Firearm management. This office will have final say over future gun regulation to prevent against rampant innovation that was not forseen by the second amendment.
There's absolutely no chance of this being passed, of course. But it's another data point against "no one wants to take your guns".
Gun control on the move in the House
The story at PJMedia
The Public Safety and Second Amendment Rights Protection Act of 2013, a measure sponsored by Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) and Rep. Mike Thompson (D-Calif.), who chairs the House Gun Violence Prevention Task Force, has been sitting idly in the House Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security and Investigations since April. But it has 185 co-sponsors, leaving it 33 votes short of a majority in the lower chamber. In addition to expanding background checks, the King-Thompson legislation creates a commission to study and report on the âroot causes of these recurring and tragic acts of mass violence.â
33 votes is still a ways away from a majority, but it's close enough to be worth paying attention to. If Reid is willing to short-circuit the filibuster for judges on Obama's say-so, he might be willing to short-circuit the filibuster for gun control too. And Schumer is already trying to sneak gun control legislation through the Senate with procedural tricks
I'm not worried, exactly. Just watchful. We need to be ready to counter anything that comes up.
Little Brother can help against Big Brother
For honest cops, a video record of their on-duty interactions with the public
is a win-win situation.
Small cameras such as the AXON Flex from Taser International can attach to an officer's sunglasses, hat, or uniform. Earlier this year, a 12-month study by Cambridge University researchers revealed that when the city of Rialto, California, required its cops to wear cameras, the number of complaints filed against officers fell by 88 percent and the use of force by officers dropped by almost 60 percent. Watched cops are polite cops.
For dishonest and abusive cops, it's lose-lose.
Watching how police officers react to this proposal is probably a pretty good proxy for their honesty.
Report on Sandy Hook shooting available
Report on the shooting has been released
. I haven't had time to read it yet.
Evie Hudak, Colorado State Senator, resigns to preempt recall effort
She supported gun control and is now paying the political price
for it. She's actually resigning before the recall effort is even completed, because doing so will allow her party to name her replacement (and thus retain control of the Senate in Colorado
NRA sues San Francisco over magazine ban
It helps to have a few really, really crazy anti-gun jurisdictions. That way, we can find good cases
to bring to the Supreme Court
.Hat tip to SaysUncle
Virtual President on Health Care
Remember when your parents admitted Santa Claus was a lie?
It's time to grow up and understand the 5 lies your government is telling you
The Nuclear Option
Hat tip to Alphecca
Just a coincidence?
Just two years before the presidential election, the Census Bureau had caught an employee fabricating data that went into the unemployment report, which is one of the most closely watched measures of the economy.
The Census employee caught faking the results is Julius Buckmon, according to confidential Census documents obtained by The Post. Buckmon told me in an interview this past weekend that he was told to make up information by higher-ups at Census.
No. It's another indication
that Obama's re-election will have an asterisk appended to it in the honest history books. As in (*): President
Obama achieved re-election by systematically and illegally repressing opposition organizations via the Internal Revenue Service, manipulation of economic reports via the Census Bureau, and other means.
And we can't prove it, because:
"It was a phone conversation -- I forget the exact words -- but it was,'Go ahead and fabricate it' to make it what it was,"Â Buckmon told me.
They have learned that official emails are subject to FOIA requests, so they don't use official email accounts to conduct business. They use private email accounts -- or did, because that's been exposed now -- and phone conversations to issue their illegal instructions. Then it becomes he-said-she-said if the lower-level employee gets caught.
All this while the NSA records everything we say, and the local police department records everywhere we drive.
Another massive database of law-abiding citizens' behavior
We now know that federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies are using automated license-plate scanners, mounted on everything from telephone poles to police cars, to build a huge database of where people are driving. This might seem like a small intrusion compared with the electronic spying carried out by the NSA. But not all threats to privacy involve the tracking of emails and other communications.
This is exactly the sort of thing that isn't very threatening when applied to individuals by a high-cost method (following them with a police vehicle 24/7), but when applied to the whole population
in a manner that can be accessed at any time in the future when the government becomes interested in a particular citizen, turns the society into a police state.
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.