Fast and Furious now with new improved grenades

A long-awaited Inspector General report faults U.S. law enforcement officials for allowing a dangerous drug cartel grenade trafficker to operate unfettered, endangering the public’s lives, much as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) allowed thousands of assault rifles to be trafficked to Mexican drug cartels in Operation Fast and Furious.

Attkisson reports on the release of an Inspector General's report detailing the grenade smuggler who was allowed to continue his operations, presumably for political purposes to drum up support for gun control.

Yes, you read the right. The Justice Department allowed someone to smuggle grenades as part of their insane gun control scheme. And yes, people were hurt and killed with them.

Thu Oct 30 17:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Vaugn Index reveals Holder lied to Congress on Fast and Furious

The files received by JW include three electronic mails between Holder and Jarrett and one from former U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke to Jarrett. The e-mails with Holder are all from October 4, 2011, a significant date because, on the evening of October 3rd, Sheryl Attkisson (then at CBS news) released documents showing that Holder had been sent a briefing paper on Operation Fast and Furious on June 5, 2010. The paper was from the director of the National Drug Intelligence Center, Michael Walther.

This directly contradicted Holder’s May 3, 2011 testimony to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, during which he stated that he, “probably heard about Fast and Furious for the first time over the last few weeks.” The October 4, 2011 date may also be significant because it came shortly after the August 30, 2011 resignation of U.S. Attorney for Arizona Dennis Burke and reassignment of acting ATF director Kenneth Melson to the position of “senior forensics advisor” at DOJ.

Judicial Watch spells it out. We were already pretty sure Holder was lying on this point, but details on how the coverup happened are new. And we don't know what else they are hiding about the operation.

Also, it's pretty odd that Obama would assert executive privilege for Holder's communications with Holder's wife.

Thu Oct 30 09:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Bread and Circuses

New York politicians say Comcast shouldn't be allowed to buy Time Warner Cable unless it provides free Internet service to all residents of public housing.

In this case they aren't even paying for the circuses, they are just telling the circus providers to offer circuses for free in poor neighborhoods or they won't be allowed to perform.

This is disgustingly unethical and a really bad idea. See, the way the internet is structured -- unlike broadcast TV -- each individual or household has their own bandwidth allocation. If two people are watching the same TV show, they are effectively each using a full channel's worth of bandwidth while they are watching the show, rather than the show being broadcast once and received twice (or three times, or a thousand times).

So while a broadcast TV show can add a new viewer for free, and a cable TV show can add a new viewer for the cost of hooking a cable up to their house where they can receive the same signal everyone else is getting, a new internet user is like adding a new channel -- you have to add capacity all the way up the chain.

That means that you can't just pay a one-time cost to hook up a bunch of new people, you have to pay ongoing bandwidth costs and expand capacity in other ways -- capacity that is already severely strained from the demands of paying customers, whose bills are already absurdly huge due to existing agreements like this one.

Politicians are crooks who buy votes with other people's money.

Wed Oct 29 18:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Texas Prop 1

Over at 3 Boxes of BS, the author explains why he voted against Prop 1. I made the same call, for similar reasons, with the following addition:

I voted against, for pretty much the same reasons. Plus the local pols have been trying to get funding for their "light rail" projects in pretty much every single election since I moved here, and getting increasingly desperate each time they lose (and sometimes finding money elsewhere). The wording of this change doesn't say anything about light rail, but doesn't exclude it either.

Even if it was right to transfer the money out, I don't trust politicians to spend it on actual roads rather than light rail vanity projects.

We'll see if it passes.

Wed Oct 29 17:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

The Hickenlooper Blues

Wed Oct 29 16:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Gun control activist attempts to SWAT open carry activist

Wed Oct 29 15:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Looking back on Waco after 20 years

Wed Oct 29 14:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Start with the violence and intimidation...

Out of the blue, a Ventura County Sheriff's deputy approached my dog, drew his gun and threatened to shoot him while we were camping last night. One of the scariest, most upsetting and unnecessary things that's happened to us, here's how it went down.

... and people may respect you while you are there, but they'll hate you when you leave.

Wed Oct 29 13:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

David Hardy and David Kopel to speak on firearms laws

Wed Oct 29 12:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]


Shirtless male models and party buses are being offered to encourage female students at North Carolina State University to get out and vote during the Nov. 4 midterm elections. NC State students looking to vote will have the option of taking “a party bus equipped with snacks, prizes and shirtless male models” provided by Cosmopolitan magazine, student newspaper, Technician Online, reports. Colleges around the country were eligible for Cosmo’s contest prize, but the battleground state school is the winner.

The Supreme Court has apparently ruled that this sort of thing doesn't constitute buying a vote, and is thus perfectly legal. Technically, they are probably right.

But anyone with a brain knows what's going on anyway.

Wed Oct 29 11:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

A Governor out of touch with Colorado

Wed Oct 29 10:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Whatever happened to the IRS targeting investigation?

Wed Oct 29 09:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Sharyl Attkisson's government-sponsored computer hack

It seems that a government agency wanted to keep a very close eye on her, and had actually planted evidence on her computer that they could later use to discredit or perhaps incriminate her or whoever they chose to paint as her sources. The evidence suggests that the hack was a black-bag job, not an authorized covert search for intelligence purposes.

Just when you think Attkisson’s imagination might be running away with her comes wave after wave of evidence that both her CBS computer and personal iMac were repeatedly hacked and its files accessed, including one on Benghazi. A consultant hired by CBS reached the same conclusion. Further scrutiny of her personal desktop proves that “the interlopers were able to co-opt my iMac and operate it remotely, as if they were sitting in front of it.” And an inspection revealed that an extra fiber-optics line had been installed in Attkisson’s home without her knowledge.

That extra fiber-optics line? That's not her imagination.

Tue Oct 28 13:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

The problem with government science...

The authors of the study admitted a bias going into the study. Here was the history as described to me: Public health experts long assumed flu shots were effective in the elderly. But, paradoxically, all the studies done failed to demonstrate a benefit. Instead of considering that they, the experts, could be wrong–instead of believing the scientific data–the public health experts assumed the studies were wrong. After all, flu shots have to work, right?

... is that the answer is usually known before the question is asked. Even when that answer is wrong.

Of course nothing immunizes non-government science from having the same issue. But if you are paying for a study with your own money, at least you are likely to pay attention to the results.

Mon Oct 27 15:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

NYTimes publishes article on black gun rights

It's by Charles W Cooke, who is an established conservative gun-friendly author... but still, in the New York Times?

Mon Oct 27 14:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Obama's FBI director does not believe you have a right to privacy

He's hinting at legislative action to prevent cellphone manufacturers from including secure encryption in their products, because he wants to be able to take your cellphone from you and read everything you have stored on it... which is basically your whole digital life for most people these days.

But the worst part of his speech is this:

Comey stressed that neither he, nor the FBI, has the answer to these thorny issues. Yet the public needs to resolve the questions, he said. In addition, the pendulum of public opinion — which had swung far to the side of security following 9/11 — has now swung too far in the opposite direction, he said.

That's so misleading it's actively deceptive. The key to the deception is the term "public opinion"; yes, after 9/11, public opinion strongly favored more surveillance of terrorists. Congress passed the Patriot Act, a pre-written wishlist for law enforcement that removed important safeguards keeping criminal investigations separate from national security activities. That wasn't enough so legal protections were quietly eroded further several times. Now, we get the NSA feeding information to the DEA, and the DEA making up lies in court about where they got the tip to stop a particular car. Under Obama, things have gotten measurably worse, with the surveillance apparatus directed away from terrorists and criminals, and focused on ordinary people.

Now, the pendulum of public opinion has swung back. But not one law has been changed. Not one NSA program has been shut down.

Mon Oct 27 13:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

They usually call this sort of thing a calibration error

...but if it really was a calibration error, you would see occasional errors in favor of Republicans. Instead, the errors seem to always favor Democrats.

Mon Oct 27 12:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Do illegal alien votes matter?

The Washington Post reports on a study that quantifies how often non-citizens vote, and arrives at the figure of approximately 6% (per election). That sounds fine until you realize that, first, they aren't allowed to vote, and second, that leads to an estimate of 1.4 million illegal votes in 2008. And when 80% vote for Democrats, that swings elections.

And while voter ids laws help reduce that by about 25%, they aren't in place everywhere, and they don't stop it completely.

Mon Oct 27 11:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

The terrorists are restless

An apparent terrorist attack in Canada ends with the terrorist shot dead by the parliamentary master of arms within the government building itself. A man with a hatchet and social media promotions of Islam and jihad attacks four police officers... but authorities say it isn't terrorism.

Mon Oct 27 10:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Ebola and biowarefare updates

Another confirmed Ebola patient, this one in New York City. The man is a doctor who was treating Ebola patients in Africa and returned to the US for some reason. He was self-monitoring for symptoms, but otherwise engaging in a normal life that included trips with the Uber cab service, subway rides, and bowling. Now, he's tested positive for ebola. Another aid worker has been hospitalized with symptoms after returning to the US, and is awaiting test results. Another possible case in Nashville.

And the epidemic in Africa is growing exponentially -- fast enough that they can't even keep track of it.

Why the fuck can't these people who know they are at risk for the disease self-quarantine while they wait out the incubation period?

To top it off, 5 embassies in Istanbul (US, Canadian, Belgian, German, French) received an envelope containing an unknown yellow powder. Previous "powder mailings" in the US have been anthrax. No idea what this stuff is yet, but it's not health food, that's for sure.

The measures we have to defeat Ebola rely on the patients and the people exposed to the patients cooperating. That assumption is no longer operative.

UPDATE: Another traveler quarantined and being tested for Ebola.

Mon Oct 27 09:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Democrats condoning voter fraud in Colorado

James O'Keefe goes undercover:

And in response, Facebook shuts down his account:

Sat Oct 25 17:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Civil Forfeiture

Sat Oct 25 16:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Verizon injecting user identifiers into web traffic

Cellular communications provider Verizon Wireless is adding cookie-like tokens to Web requests traveling over its network. These tokens are being used to build a detailed picture of users’ interests and to help clients tailor advertisements, according to researchers and Verizon’s own documentation.

I am no longer a Verizon customer.

Fri Oct 24 17:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

A different kind of smart gun

Yardarm Technologies' sensor is a small device that goes inside gun handles and provides dispatchers with real-time geo-location tracking information on the weapon. The Yardarm Sensor also sends alerts when a weapon is unholstered or fired, and it can "record the direction of aim, providing real-time tactical value for commanders and providing crime scene investigators valuable data for prosecution," the company said.

It's intended market is police officers, and because it doesn't seem designed to interfere with the decision to fire the weapon and isn't seeking a government mandate, it may avoid the problems normally associated with "smart" guns in the gun community. But it's not quite that simple:

The 18-month-old startup has raised about $1.5 million so far and has radically altered its business model. Initially, the company focused on the consumer firearms market, but it ran into controversy. It was hawking technology that would allow private gun owners the ability to remotely lock a weapon. If a weapon was moved—or stolen—an alarm would alert the owner's mobile phone. The owner would have the option to remotely disable the weapon from being fired.

Yeah, I'm not going to trust that they have changed their spots. This project can die on the vine as far as I am concerned.

Fri Oct 24 16:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Homeland Security conducts raid on panty shop

"It all came crashing down on Tuesday when Homeland Security showed up and said we were committing a crime of copyright infringement," Meister said. "My initial response was fear. How often does Homeland Security show up to your panty shop?"

Why the fuck is "homeland security" enforcing copyright law on lingerie shops? Don't they have terrorists to catch?

Fri Oct 24 15:35:24 CDT 2014 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

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