Busy year…

Foggy-Sunrise_-Seattle-Skyline-_-Mt_-Rainier8197075467337321062Infrequent posting due to work, family (just had our 4th!), and life. Twitter is tempting, but I miss the long form.

I know a lot of folks feel on edge based on current events and our administration’s various agendas. But please hang in there; the fight for our 2nd Amendment (and other) rights won’t be going away any time soon.

No matter who is in power, individual liberty will always stand athwart big government.

[Incidentally, I’ve published some older posts from last year, and even January, that I just didn’t feel up to throwing out there during and after a revolting election season. I re-evaluated them and felt they should be there. Obvioiusly, these issues have been long sorted out, or are still in the process.]

Steyn on Fluke

Thank you, Mark, for putting things in perspective

“No, the most basic issue here is not religious morality, individual liberty, or fiscal responsibility. It’s that a society in which middle-aged children of privilege testify before the most powerful figures in the land to demand state-enforced funding for their sex lives at a time when their government owes more money than anyone has ever owed in the history of the planet is quite simply nuts.”

In fact, there’s nothing that screams, ‘setup’ like the faux-hearing that Pelosi created to hear this “testimony” of hers in the first place, followed by her her interview on The View, insisting that the likes of Media Matters for America is a spectacular, unbiased source.  That’s just insulting.

Further, that she crys that she is being shut out by Rush Limbaugh. Being on all the talk shows she’s been on, I guess that irony is lost on her. Even more suspect is the personal phone call she received from the President.

And the curiosity continues now that she is being represented by SKDKnickerbocker, who has among its Washington Managing Directors, former Obama White House Communications Director, Anita Dunn.  You remember her and the ‘flag@whitehouse.gov’ snitch line, Attackwatch, her regular meetings with former Media Matters president Eric Burns, etc.

But Media Matters insists that’s all hogwash, and it may well be… after all, embedded plays are perfectly ok for Democrats. They’re only cardinals sins for everyone else… it’s all about intentions, after all (and the great pavement that they make on the road to hell).

Mark’s close says it best.

Almost every matter of the moment boils down to the same story: The Left’s urge to narrow the bounds of public discourse and insist that “conventional wisdom” unknown to the world the day before yesterday is now as unquestionable as the laws of physics.

Heads Need to Roll for Gunwalking

This is a little old (Nov 7th) in the context of our 24hr news cycle, but is well said and bears repeating.  From HotAir

The idea that we need to regulate the wider population more tightly in order to prevent catastrophically moronic operations by the feds gives me a warm glow deep in my libertarian heart. And I do mean catastrophic: Watch this new clip from ace CBS reporter Sharyl Atkisson updating the death toll from gunwalking. It’s not just Brian Terry.

[Original CBS Video]
CBS Video on their YouTube channel:

Then, Mr. Holder tried to manipulate increasingly negative press coverage by deploying a calculated document drop (Oct 31st), on the eve of Lanny Breuer’s testimony, of information investigators asked for in September.  “Bush did it first,” was the headline the select outlets ran with.  That’s what Holder’s dept. wanted, but it’s not accurate.

Let’s be clear, Operation Wide Receiver was not like Operation Fast & Furious (emphasis mine)…

In a controlled delivery firearms case, guns are traced in the sense that agents closely and physically follow them — they don’t just note the serial numbers or other identifying markers. The agents are thus able to trace the precise path of the guns from, say, American dealers to straw purchasers to Mexican buyers.

To the contrary, Fast & Furious involved uncontrolled deliveries — of thousands of weapons. It was an utterly heedless program in which the feds allowed these guns to be sold to straw purchasers — often leaning on reluctant gun dealers to make the sales. The straw purchasers were not followed by close physical surveillance; they were freely permitted to bulk transfer the guns to, among others, Mexican drug gangs and other violent criminals — with no agents on hand to swoop in, make arrests, and grab the firearms. The inevitable result of this was that the guns have been used (and will continue to be used) in many crimes, including the murder of Brian Terry, a U.S. border patrol agent.

In sum, the Fast & Furious idea of “trace” is that, after violent crimes occur in Mexico, we can trace any guns the Mexican police are lucky enough to seize back to the sales to U.S. straw purchasers … who should never have been allowed to transfer them (or even buy them) in the first place…

Ace sums it up well

Holder’s attempt is to claim that “Bush did it,” so the fact that the GOP is only asking about Holder proves this is all a partisan smear. Well, Bush didn’t do it, actually, and further, the GOP was asking about the Bush era programs too.

So: Holder implicitly claims he can’t release documents because they’re too confidential, but then decides on his own to give them to the press when he thinks it might help them?

Or: Holder ignores a constitutional, lawful demand for information, but then releases information on his own initiative to bail his corrupt, Marc Rich pardon-purchasing ass out?

Either way. It’s hard to say why Holder refused to comply, because he doesn’t offer reasons — he just ignores the requests entirely.

There was no government-to-government coordination like in Operation Wide Receiver, and there may have been something far more sinister at play here than just a botched Federal operation… the resuscitation of nationwide gun control.

Recall, in 2009, the administration’s, and especially Hilary’s, preoccupation with false figures in regards to US firearms in Mexico?  Funny sense of timing wasn’t it?  Read it all:

…from the beginning the scheme was to pad statistics on U.S. guns in Mexico in order to be in a strengthened position to call for gun bans and strict gun control at a time when it was politically unpopular. Further, the scheme would involve a made-up statistic, out of thin air–90%–which then had to be proved by using civilian gun retailers along the southern border as unsuspecting pawns to walk U.S. guns into Mexico by ATF agents, straw purchasers, and others with connections to Mexican drug cartels.

And the evidence points to the fact that Hillary Clinton was one of the original Administration officials who was ‘in the loop’ on the scheme from the very beginning.

It’s a pity that investigators are limiting their scope (for now) to the DOJ.  This may never get back up the chain to President Obama; seldom does.  However, we know this administration’s attitude toward the 2nd Amendment, owners of firearms, and the nation’s (legal, responsible) gun culture.  The President, frankly, doesn’t need to say anything… his people know his goals and shared them from the beginning.

As for Sec Clinton, we know how Clintons feel about so-called, erroneously named  “assault weapons” and the lengths they’ve gone to ban them in the past.  We just didn’t expect them to start arming criminal organizations with them on purpose as means to that end.

God willing, more heads at all levels will roll on this… it’s the least we can do for the victims of this government-created chaos.

Happy American Censorship Day (aka Fight the SOPA and Protect-IP)

This is some pretty poorly designed legislation that would put all US users at risk.  Please head over to AmericanCensorship.org for more details.


Please also read this piece at TechLiberationFront

The question here isn’t whether the law is well intentioned, or even whether piracy is a huge problem (I’d agree it is). The question is whether this particular approach to combating piracy is worth its costs.

Put more simply: good intentions don’t matter. You should know this better than anyone from having watched the FCC become a rogue agency because of the vague and broadly worded language of the Communications Act.  Sorting out this mess can’t be left up to the courts: betting the Internet’s future on the unpredictable whims of federal judges is a recipe for disaster and an affront to the rule of law.

Word. Fight the power.

Mourning in America

The “jobless recovery” has been a pervasive meme in the news the last couple years.  Yeah, not so much

According to the Commerce Department, the economy expanded 1.3 percent in the second quarter of this year. We also learned that the economy came close to contracting in the first quarter. The government revised the first quarter growth figures downward to just 0.4 percent, a huge downward revision from what we were orginally told (an increase of 1.9 percent).

From the first quarter of 2010 through the first quarter of 2011, we experienced five consecutive quarters of slowing growth (3.9 percent, 3.8 percent, 2.5 percent, 2.3 percent, and 0.4 percent).

What does this mean for you and me? Well, it means businesses are still feeling very insecure about our current future. Especially with the way our government continues to react to it.  The tone coming out of Washington D.C. is one of uncertainty. That is to say, business owners — people — are not convinced that the government is not going to try to extract every penny it can from their dwindling net profits.

True, the government has actually done that as of yet, but they talk like they are, and words mean things.  And these things are what lead businesses to cut back on employees and freeze wages.

To see the results of heavy handed government, at least at the local level, one need only look the Detroit that was

DETROIT – Detroit neighborhoods with more people and a better chance of survival will receive different levels of city services than more blighted areas under a plan unveiled Wednesday that some residents fear may pit them against each other for scarce resources.
Detroit’s population of about 713,000 is down about 200,000 from 10 years ago, according to U.S. Census figures, and has fallen more than 1 million since 1950. Some areas have fewer occupied homes than vacant ones.

Detroit is a miserable case study of big government run amok.  Predictable when vote-hungry politicians adopt policies that reward people for riding in the wagon and punish the folks who are pulling the wagon.

Atlas Shrugged was viewed as a dystopian fantasy 50 years ago. Today, Greece, Illinois, and Detroit are making Ayn Rand seem like a prophet.

Given our current rate of decline and flatline, hard times may continue to get harder

Four years since the economic crisis first reared its frightening head, with the failure of two Bear Stearns hedge funds in late July 2007, the nation’s output is clocking in at just $13.27 trillion — belowwhere it was when the house of cards first began to tumble.Now, after $4.7 trillion dollars in federal spending and $1.8 trillion in money-printing from the Federal Reserve, we’re in worse shape than we were before the bubble burst. And the economy is staring at the prospect of a fresh recession.

And the latest debt deal that’s not supposed to raise taxes?  Yeah, they still could. And that’s good or bad depending on your perspective.

All I can suggest is that you practice your own austerity, folks.  Live within your means. Rediscover your faith. I am deeply appreciative of Dave Ramsey’s call to start the recovery with ourselves.

In the meantime, buy some guns & ammunition and be prepared to re-weather 1932.

Whistling Past the Graveyard

First, read the whole piece… with this choice pull:

Debt is now the father of us all. In some sense, every cruise missile fired, every Social Security check cashed, ever NPR show aired is done so in part with borrowed money. In response, the president saw the impending doom of insolvency, appointed a bipartisan commission to draft a solution, and then ignored his own appointees’ recommendations. So far the excuse is largely that George Bush ran up debt as well, although last month Obama’s red-ink exceeded the entire 2007 budget deficit under Bush — 30 days of Obama trumping 365 of Bush.

Second, wonder why there isn’t actual baying for blood over these figures we are racking up.

Third, realize that the fit has yet to fully hit the shan, although we are starting to see the ill-effects of our profligate ways even now.

To the uninformed, passive observer, things are still moving along all right, despite the rise in food and energy prices. They can still get some government services, they can still get food and gas mostly when they desire. But when the full brunt of the collective, poor fiscal decision-making starts to be felt, then will begin the baying for blood.

There will be few basic services, no more “free” government handouts because we simply will not have any money left. Not even fake money.

And by then, it will be way too late for corrective action.

This month’s attack on the Second Amendment is brought to you by….

At the beginning of August, five eco-mentalist organization submitted a petition to the EPA, requesting a ban on all lead-based ammunition, claiming, “the use of traditional ammunition by hunters is inconsistent with the Toxic Substance Control Act of 1976.”

The petitioners to the EPA included American Bird Conservancy, the Center for Biological Diversity, Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, the Association of Avian Veterinarians and, Project Gutpile.

Grass-roots and industry backlash was rallied by the National Shooting Sports Foundation (a trade association), and a few days later the NRA weighed in.

After spending a few weeks re-discovering its level of authority, the petition was denied and the EPA’s response is here.

Dave Workman, Seattle Examiner Gun Rights columnist, has an excellent write-up on this month-long issue… the best bit is this (emphasis mine):

The NRA did the right thing.  It reminded the EPA that the law — you know, that’s the thing environmentalists draw like a gun when they want to force people to do something — does not allow what those same environmentalists were trying to do.  The NRA didn’t make anybody “surrender.”  The NRA merely insisted that the statute be followed.

Hunters and others involved in shooting sports are among the top conservationists in the land.  We want game animals and the rest of the environment to thrive so that the same enjoyment can be had for the next generation and many after.  And through gaming licenses/fees, excise taxes, fund-raising efforts by many different conservation groups, and personal responsibility, we put our money where we run our mouth.

Personally, I wasn’t too worried, as such a ban would have been a considerable overreach.  However, if there’s one thing this current administration will be remembered for, it is its penchant for just that sort of thing.