Tuesday, 13 October


Very rough night. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

And I have to get to a doctor's appointment right now. I'll try to have more later. Sorry.


GOP bill would allow concealed guns on Wisconsin college campuses [Gun News]

Today's Paper, also known as the e-Edition, is an online replica of the printed newspaper. You can view today's paper or previous issues.


Julianne Moore Launches Gun Safety Campaign: 'This Is My Responsibility As a Parent' [Gun News]

Like many parents, Oscar-winner Julianne Moore was deeply affected by the horrific shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., in December 2012. "I remember my daughter [Liv, 12] came to work with me that day.


New law bans concealed guns on schools, college campuses [Gun News]

Governor Jerry Brown signed SB 707 on Saturday that bans concealed weapons, including guns, on college campuses and public schools all over the state. SB 707 is a controversial law because supports said more guns on schools mean more shootings, while opponents said restricting people with concealed carry permits isn't the solution.

Monday, 12 October


Israeli gun owners rush to shooting ranges amid wave of attacks [Gun News]

The phones have been ringing nonstop at the Gun Hill shooting range, following a week of daily knife attacks by Palestinians and a clarion call by Israeli politicians requesting that permit holders should carry their pistols on their hips to help protect the citizenry against terrorists. "It's a madhouse," said Yair Yifrach, general manger of the training center and gun shop here at a Jewish settlement north of Jerusalem.


A couple of wedding pics from Saturday. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

Walking her down the aisle:
The deed is done:


Ann Arbor superintendent to testify against bill allowing concealed guns in school [Gun News]

Sen. Mike Green, R-Mayville, introduced legislation that would prevent open carry in schools, but allow concealed pistol license holders to get an endorsement that allows them to carry concealed weapons. Legislators will review the bill Tuesday, Oct. 13, in the Senate Judiciary Committee, and from there it could move onto the Senate floor.


Texas students fight campus-carry law by packing sex toys instead:... [Gun News]

Welcome to post-metaphor America, everybody. In the aftermath of three deadly campus shootings in just the span of a little more than a week - in Oregon , in Arizona , and in Texas - it's clear yet again that America loves its guns more than it loves just about anything, including the freedom to walk around a school setting without fear of getting shot to death by a sociopathic " beta male ."


Gun advocates challenge zoos' bans on possession around US [Gun News]

The nearly century-old institution recently lifted its longtime firearms ban amid a broader push by gun-rights advocates who are pressuring zoos in Texas and elsewhere to do the same. Gun-rights supporters say publicly owned zoos have misinterpreted laws and are illegally posting signs that ban firearms.


At UT Austin, an 'obscene' protest will use erotica (rhymes with Glock) to fight guns on campus [Gun News]

When '60s protesters were opposing the Vietnam War, they emblazoned the demand for sexual freedom over violence on buttons they wore on their chests. Come next fall, students at the University of Texas Austin will protest concealed handguns on campus by strapping "gigantic swinging dildos" to their backpacks.


Greta Van Susteren joins the Brady Bunch in soliciting civil war -- again. As if we wouldn't consider ammuntion restrictions as a casus belli. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

Casus belli: a Latin expression meaning "An act or event that provokes or justifies going to war."
"Son, you don't poke a wolverine with a sharp stick unless you want your balls ripped off." -- Grandpa Vanderboegh.
A Brady Buncher writes: "The late senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan once said that in the United States there was a 200-year supply of guns but a four-year supply of ammunition. So what if we stopped worrying about the guns and instead focused on the bullets?"
This is a socialist siren song warbeled by the elites, including FOX News contributor Greta Van Susteren, who proposed on the George Stephanopolous talking head show the other day: "The guns are there. If you really want to regulate you’ve got to be a little bit smarter, maybe regulate ammunition so that people can’t use their guns. That’s the smart thing."
"Smart thing"?!?!? First of all, as my Grandpa Vanderboegh used to say, "With 'friends' like these, who needs enemas?" Secondly, any effort to restrict ammunition as proposed is a faster way than firearms bans to arrive at the hellgate of civil war. As I have observed before, "Guns are easy. Logistics is hard." This is well understood by every shooter and liberty activist who has taken the time to think things through.
Most long-time readers recall when I told another collectivist puke:
I was once asked by an advocate of citizen disarmament what I thought of "gun control," and then, as I framed my answer, he added, "Give me the short answer."
"Okay," I answered, "if you try to take our firearms we will kill you."
I used to argue history, facts and common sense with such as you, but gave it up as a bad job.
It boils down to that: "If you try to take our firearms (liberty, property, insert any other God-given, inalienable right), we will kill you."
The same goes for ammunition, Greta. I shouldn't have to explain that, but unprincipled prohibitionists such as you are nothing if not terminally stupid.


Ben Carson's gun comments highlight free-wheeling style [Gun News]

In this Oct. 9, 2015 photo, Republican presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson speaks at a luncheon at the National Press Club in Washington. In the past week, Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson has suggested the Holocaust wouldn't have happened if Jews in Europe were better armed, said gun control is a bigger tragedy than a bullet-riddled body and that the best way to confront a mass shooter is to rush the gunman.

Sunday, 11 October


Donald Trump: 'Sometimes' I carry a concealed handgun because 'I feel much better being armed' [Gun News]

In an interview with CBS' Face The Nation on Sunday, host John Dickerson asked Trump if he ever carried a concealed weapon. When asked about if more people should carry concealed guns in the wake of violent mass shootings, the current Republican presidential front-runner said that while it was up to people to make their own decisions, he takes comfort in carrying his weapon.


"Can Hillary Clinton change the gun debate?" I hope she and all the other collectivist candidates (including some on the GOP side) think they can. I really do. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

Go ahead, Hillary, dance barefoot on that rail. What could possibly go wrong?
"Beyond short-term tactics, Clinton's militancy also illustrates that gun control is no longer a political third rail for Democrats."
A column that makes a bit more sense, but won't make a dent in the collectivists' appetites for citizen disarmament is: "Guns, Congress, and the will of the people."
It is easy to grandstand and pretend that there is an obvious legislative response to mass shootings; that there exists a legislative blueprint to prevent them, if only the forces of evil in Congress would get out of the way (picture them now, lighting cigars provided by the NRA with flames from burning $100 bills provided by the Koch brothers). But over time, and in particular on issues subject to much public discussion, Congress generally does reflect the will of the people. And with respect gun control, notwithstanding our desire to “do something” in the face of tragedy, the people appear to have gotten it basically right.


Gun sales soar as Israelis arm themselves against - wave of terror' [Gun News]

A two-year-old and a 13-year-old are among the latest to die as Israel cracks down on Palestinian unrest Gun sales in Israel have soared as officials urge members of the public to defend themselves against a "wave of terror" sweeping the country. Israeli-Palestinian violence showed no signs of abating on Sunday, as three Palestinians, including a two-year-old and a 13-year-old, were killed by Israeli forces, and four Israelis were wounded in an evening stabbing attack.


Saturday Night Live: Amy Schumer Mocks Gun Enthusiasts [Gun News]

Reigning queen of 2015 Amy Schumer made her Saturday Night Live hosting debut this weekend, and she did it with a bang. Just one day after two mass shootings occurred on two different college campuses, the sketch series aimed their sights on gun control in what would become a recurring theme of the night.


Praxis: Rebuilding M16 magazines for fun and no profit. Magazine donation for smuggling project is like a trip down history road. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

On Saturday morning, I received a package from a faithful reader which included 34 30-round and 6 20-round M16 magazines as donations for the smuggling campaign (probable destination, New York state, if Cuomo's state police taxpayer-feeding minions are paying attention). Looking through the haul was like a trip down U.S. Army procurement history. It also struck me that it might be a good time to pass along a description of how we check magazines for functionality and what steps we take to make them ready for shipment as "freedom-fighter" grade units.
As you might imagine, these come in used (some of them abused) and often covered in grime, sand particles and with the archaeological remnants of 100-mile-an-hour tape. The first step is to disassemble them, clean them internally, paying particular attention to the springs, making sure that there are no dings in the mag body to interfere with the follower, etc. We use acetone to remove any markings (some of them, occasionally, quite obscene) and the remnants of the OD duct tape. If found serviceable, all followers are replaced by MagPul anti-tilt followers which, although adding to the expense per unit ($2.00 each), takes care of most of the problems of feeding.
(Readers who have never disassembled an AR-15/M16 aluminum magazine may find these instructions at CTD helpful.)
It is, oddly enough, quite rare that we find a spring problem. Almost always the problems, if any, are traceable to two causes: the old black plastic GI followers and spreading or denting of the feed lips. Modern springs, especially USGI, are remarkably robust no matter how long the mag has been loaded. We recently unearthed a cache of magazines and ammunition that had been in a cave since the late 90s and two magazines were found to be loaded. We swapped the followers for MagPul anti-tilts, reassembled them and fired off the ammunition with which they had been loaded lo these many years without a stutter.
Our primary, initial check after cleaning and reassembly is detailed in this useful video: Quick inspection AR15/M16 magazines.
Unlike the maker of this video, however, we do not eschew using these tools available from Brownells: the feed lip tool and the feed lip gauge.
If the magazine fails the initial test described above, we then gauge it, checking the lips and if necessary and possible, use the tool to bend it back into place. If the mag body is swelled out of spec, we take it back down, use the body and other unserviceable parts such as the black plastic followers (which are meticulously scavenged -- nothing goes to waste -- in order to assemble "politician grade" magazines for the taunting of anti-firearm pukes in public office. The repaired mag is then set aside for our next trip to the range to test for functionality. If it performs flawlessly, then it gets shipped as a "freedom fighter." If not, it is cannibalized as described above.
Now we only do this for the standard thirty round magazines. We find the demand for the 20 rounders, especially Colt-marked twenties, to be such that we can wait for the next gun show and trade one 20 rounder for between two to five thirty rounders, which are then put into the production stream as described above.
We also have some collectors who look for specifically marked thirties for their collections. You can find information on the markings and makers of USGI magazines at these two sites: "M16 Magazine Manufacturer Information" and John Wesley, Rawles' "AR15/M16 Magazine FAQ."
This latest box was like a trip down US Army procurement history lane. Here's the breakdown of makers and markings:
Twenty Rounders --
Colt, Hartford CT Qty 4
Adventureline, Parsons, KS Qty 1
Universal Industries, Simmons Precision Products, West Haven CT Qty 1
Thirty Rounders --
Sanchez Enterprises, Mansfield OH Qty 2
Center Industries, Wichita KS Qty 6
LaBelle Industries, Oconomowoc WI Qty 1
Adventureline, Parsons, KS Qty 5
Parsons Precision Products, Parsons, KS Qty 6
Cooper Industries, Upland, CA Qty 1
Okay Industries, New Britain, CT Qty 12
Colt's Firearms Division, Colt Industries, Hartford, CT Qty 1
All in all, quite a collection, dating from Vietnam to the Iraq War.
At the same time, we received from another reader two MagPul Gen 2 P-Mags. Some lucky resister behind enemy lines will get those with a bit of luck of the draw.
Of course what with weddings, wedding exhaustion and other factors, I haven't had time to process the new batch yet, but I'll try to let you know what the acceptance/rejection/rebuild rate is in a later post.


Would-be gun violence researchers see many challenges and little hope in career path [Gun News]

Amid the bloodbaths of 21st-century America, you might think that there would be a lot of research into the causes of gun violence, and which policies work best against it. Gun interests, wary of any possible limits on weaponry, have successfully lobbied for limitations on government research and funding, and private sources have not filled the breach.


Forget Ben Carson's gunslinger fantasy. The best gun safety strategy is not owning a gun - period. [Gun News]

Ben Carson really needs to stop talking about what people should and shouldn't do when confronted by an armed criminal. First, he criticized the victims and bystanders at Oregon's Umpqua Community College-and by implication, those at other mass shootings-for not doing what he'd have done in that situation: "Not only would I probably not cooperate with him, I would not just stand there and let him shoot me."


Oregon shooting bring another debate on guns [Gun News]

Nine people died at a community college in Oregon at the hands of a gunman who did not have a criminal background nor a documented history of mental illness.


In wake of school shootings, Gov. Jerry Brown bans concealed guns on California campuses [Gun News]

A week after a gunman killed nine people at an Oregon college, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation Saturday that will ban the carrying of concealed guns on school and university campuses in this state. Sen. Lois Wolk said her bill is needed to close a loophole that allows people with concealed-weapons permits to carry firearms onto school grounds.

Saturday, 10 October


View from the left - Democrats rally around gun safety... and with good reason [Gun News]

As the media covered the shooting at Oregon's Umpqua Community College last week, reporters and news anchors continually and almost helplessly asked if anything could be done to curb gun violence in America-the most gun-laden nation in the world. Many sadly concluded, no, the gun lobby is too powerful, and if the tragic slaughter of elementary school kids in Newtown several years ago couldn't do it, then what could? What that question fails to understand is that change doesn't come because of a moment, it comes because of a movement.


The Reality That Drove Kevin McCarthy’s Exit From the Speaker Race [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

"Rep. Peter King, a liberal Republican from New York, suggested America is now 'A banana republic.' That is a petulant, childish reaction intended to dismiss the serious nature of the party’s internal divisions."

"To be clear, the solution to overcoming that divide is not some moderate caretaker or an absurd coalition-style government with Nancy Pelosi. Instead, House Republicans need to unite around a speaker who will pursue a positive conservative agenda that promotes opportunity for all and favoritism to none. That means moving away from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s preferred agenda. It means embracing serious policy reforms and challenging the left on the merits of those policies. It means fighting Obama in a real, substantive manner."
LATER: See also -- Rumors of extramarital affair drove speaker’s race drama


Well, folks, that's probably it for today. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

My oldest daughter Hannah gets married later on today so I will be a little busy, what with one thing and another. I MAY have more later, but don't count on it. I was persuaded under threat of family ostracism of the necessity of renting a tux for the occasion (which cost me darn near $200 I couldn't afford) but Rosey says I clean up well. I'll have someone take a picture. The last time I wore a tux was, what, 35-40 years ago, for my brother's wedding and the color HE chose was bright yellow. I looked like a 500 pound canary. In my black tux with all the weight the various cancers have stripped off me, I now look like a cadaverous undertaker. Which, I suppose, is an improvement over a 500 pound canary. I don't recommend my diet plan, however. Pray for me -- not for my health mind you, but for the self-control to hold my tongue and my temper until the ceremonies are over. The boy's okay. He meets my oft-stated minimum requirements:
1. He must love her (and I am persuaded that he does).
2. She must love him (ditto).
3. He must be a hard worker and be able to provide for my daughter. He is.
4. He must be a shooter and be able to field strip a Colt M1911. He is and does.
5. He must be willing and able to take a bullet for Hannah if required. I am persuaded that he is.
So, you may ask, what is it that I must hold my tongue and my temper for? Can you keep a secret? Well, so can I. Just keep me in your prayers.


Kurt Schlichter hits another one dead on (no pun intended): "Here’s What’s Behind Our Obsession With Zombies." [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

Schlichter is right: Zombies are the perfect metaphor for collectivists.
"In a time when Americans are figuratively at each other’s throats, our monsters are our fellow citizens."
Regardless of their various forms—running or stumbling, virally-induced or cause unknown—the zombie is an intensely personal, intimate nemesis. It is your friend, your spouse, even your kid, and it’s not going to kill you by radiation from a dozen miles away or via a huge claw that can’t even feel you squish as it stomps on you. A zombie is going to eat you alive, and linger while doing it. And it will all happen not in some ruined wasteland but in your own neighborhood, looking the same as it has always has except that some of its inhabitants are running from other inhabitants who want to have them for dinner. . .
The zombie genre is essentially conservative. Survival is always based upon the actions of individuals and small groups, and the government is either useless or an active threat (Max Brooks’ fascinating book “World War Z” is something of an exception, while the movie adheres to tradition). The survivors are not unlike the pioneers, trying to carve a life out of a wilderness while dodging Indians who take scalps not as trophies but as snacks. City slickers need not apply.
As conservatives do, the zombie genre likewise recognizes the necessity, even the obligation, to keep and bear arms. The people who refuse to use guns die; those who hesitate to pull the trigger allow their friends to die. Those who fight prevail. Interestingly, we have a generation of kids who attend schools where they are taught the lie that violence never solves anything and where they will be suspended for fighting back when a bully punches them. Yet on Sunday night they cheer a show that celebrates heroes who ruthlessly make gory headshot after gory headshot. Sure, the heroes wring their hands like liberals, but the ones who survive are the one who choose firepower over feelings.
It may not be a zombie apocalypse, but much of America expects some kind of apocalypse. In a beautiful city a mile or so from the Pacific one recent sunny Saturday morning, a line developed outside a gun store well before it opened. In the Age of the Zombie, the end of the world will take place not far away but at close range, and many Americans seem to have resolved to go down fighting.

Friday, 09 October


Welcome back, Chiu ChunLing. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

I missed your ever thoughtful and cogent comments.


Hillary compares dealing with NRA to negotiating with Iran [Of Arms and the Law]

Right here.

It's just a ploy to pick up the pro-gun vote, with a promise that she'd support repeal of GCA 68 and enactment of 50-State constitutional carry, plus a $10,000 gift to each gun owner, so long as we self-verify that we have no plans to commit a crime.

UPDATE: the debate between natural rights and legal positivism can never be settled!

Natural rights: rights are natural, established by God or nature. [The "nature" part involves reasoning along the lines of: "man has a strong will to keep on living, and a need to converse with other men. Ergo, his nature is proof that he has a right to self-defense and to freedom of expression."] The Framers were of this school -- why else the Ninth Amendment, recognizing that there are rights not set out in the Bill of Rights? Under this approach, a bill of rights "guarantees" a right, but does not "create" it.

Legal positivism: rights are human constructs, created by human agreements. The right to free expression exists because the First Congress proposed it, and 3/4 of the States ratified it, and we are bound by their decision. This approach really originates in the early 20th century, and is now so near-universal that most attorneys and judges don't even think of the alternative.

Of course, both sides do fudge things a little when they have to. Positivists see no problem espousing Roe v. Wade and other non-enumerated rights, on which the one certainty is that 2/3 of Congress and 3/4 of the States never agreed to matters. And those who take the natural rights approach can cite legislative history, which is of limited relevance. (I say limited because I can see an argument that "the right exists independent of the guarantee, but the guarantee establishes an indisputable minimum definition of a right.")

Thursday, 08 October


Are more gun law associated with a lower homicide rate? [Of Arms and the Law]

At the Vokolh Conspiracy, Eugene Volokh demonstrates that States' Brady Campaign grades have no association with their homicide rates, or with rates for homicide plus accidental gun deaths.

Denton Bramwell recently updated his 2006 study of the same issue, and got the same results as nine years ago: no correlation. Brady "As," "Fs," etc. can have high or low rates, with no pattern discernible.

Now, it's (quite) possible that Brady ratings do not correlate with strictness of gun control. The items evaluated are chosen on a political basis ("do we want this now"?). But at the least these results suggest that policymakers would be foolish to base enactments on Brady proposals.


Great lede for a story [Of Arms and the Law]

From the Washington Times:

"Senate Democrats gathered Thursday on the steps of the Capitol surrounded by about a dozen armed guards to announce a new push for tougher gun-control laws."

Tuesday, 06 October


Bad news for Hillary.... [Of Arms and the Law]

In approval ratings, positive vs. negative views of a person or entity, if we subtract the negative ratings from the positive ones, NRA comes off nine percent ahead, and Hillary comes off ten percent behind. Probably not a good time for her to declare war.


Response to Cornell's claim that gun rights cases were uniquely slave-state [Of Arms and the Law]

Over at National Review Online, Charles Cooke takes apart Saul Cornell's article claiming that early State gun rights cases were a product of slave State courts.

The fact is that the early gun laws were the products of the then-frontier southeast, and so were the early gun law challenges. What conclusion can be drawn from either isn't terribly clear.


Some questions should not be answered [The Liberty Sphere]

Hiya, friends!

No explanations are needed as to where I've been of late, and thus, none will be offered,

Glad that a few of you visit these pages regularly,  And I hope I can begin to settle into my normal routine,

Yes, I still write for the Examiner, and I will get back to it as soon as I can do some catching up,

Monday, 05 October


Hillary comes entirely out of the closet on the 2A [Of Arms and the Law]

Story here. The one thing lacking is just how any of these will affect mass shootings. But then I suppose a person can overlook that detail -- in this context, they are playing to a "base" that regards gun restrictions as a matter of religious dogma, existing beyond proof of truth or falsity.

Sunday, 04 October


Support for Kleck and millions of defensive uses [Of Arms and the Law]

From 1997, tho I just saw it. Using a 5,200 person telephone surgery, authors conclude that annually about 1.9 million people draw a gun during a home intrusion, but don't actually see the intruder, another 503,000 draw a gun and do see the intruder and (not surprisingly) 497,000 report the intruder fled in response to the gun. These don't include defensive uses other than in response to home invasion, and on the other hand surely include some where no intruder was sighted because there was no intruder, but certain support Kleck's conclusions that defensive gun uses number in the millions per year.

Friday, 02 October


Hillary Clinton declares war on the 2A [Of Arms and the Law]

Some leaked audio from a private fundraiser. Held, appropriately, at the house of a wealthy "prohibited person," a fellow convicted of selling cocaine.

"I'm going to speak out, I'm going to do everything I can to rally people against this pernicious, corrupting influence of the NRA and we're going to do whatever we can."

"And here again, the Supreme Court is wrong on the Second Amendment. And I am going to make that case every chance I get."

Wednesday, 30 September


BATF agent charged with armed assault over football game [Of Arms and the Law]

Story here.

"Smith said according to multiple witnesses, the two men began arguing when Delpit punched the victim to the ground, and then continued to assault him. When bystanders tried to intervene, witnesses said the ATF agent pulled out a pistol and waved it at the crowd."

Monday, 28 September


2015 Gun Rights Policy Conference [Of Arms and the Law]

I attended, and spoke at, Second Amendment Foundation's GRPC, held in Phoenix this last weekend. The audio isn't up yet (the one online is the 2014 conference), but will eventually be accessible here or here.

Among the many good presentations were: John Lott of Crime Prevention Research Center, on the other side's statistical abuses, a panel from Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership, and a panel of attorneys on "winning firearms freedom one case at a time."


Interesting weapons history [Of Arms and the Law]

Back in the 1930s, the Army experimented with semi auto versions of the Browning M-2, meant as portable tank-killers. Back then, armor was thin enough to be punctured by guns of this class (the Pazer I's armor ran from a quarter inch to a half inch), and the great weight even of a relatively light M2 could be handled by a cavalry horse. Soon, of course, tank armor got thick enough to make .50 attack useless (except, as one British source writes, to alert the tank's crew to the fact that someone was annoying them and motivate them to go looking for their tormentor).


Passive behavior probably leaves robbery victim paralyzed [John Lott's Website]

From St. Louis Today:
Christopher Sanna had parked at the Old Cathedral parking lot and was waking to his car. According to police, two men in a dark-colored sedan drove up to them. The driver got out with a gun and demanded their property. The woman gave the gunman her purse, and the couple turned to run away. The gunman fired several shots in their direction, hitting Sanna in the back.
"They turned to run away, but they didn't make it very far," Candis Sanna said. "As soon as they gave them the stuff, they were going to try to run away but he shot them. They were within arm's reach." . . .
Thanks to Tony Troglio for the link.

Wednesday, 23 September


Oral argument in Tyler v. Hillsdale [Of Arms and the Law]

Audio here. I found both sides a little hard to follow, but the judges who asked questions seemed inclined in a friendly direction.

Hillsdale involves as "as applied" challenge to the bar on firearms possession by those who have been involuntarily committed to an institution. The challenger was so committed, I gather 20-30 years ago, and is ready to present medical opinion that his mental problem is long gone. The 6th Circuit panel ruled in his favor, in an opinion that seemed unclear as to whether it was ruling "as applied" or on a "facial challenge," and the entire circuit took the case en banc.

Tuesday, 22 September


Knife Rights wins preliminary battle against NYC [Of Arms and the Law]

The Second Circuit has mostly reversed a trial court ruling that Knife Rights members had no standing to sue.

"Standing to sue" is often a complex issue, and some courts use it as a "dump button" when faced with a case they don't like. The challenge is to the NY ban on "gravity knives," defined as any folding knife that opens by force of gravity or centrifugal force. The statute doesn't define how much centrifugal force, and in practice NYPD will cite or arrest for any folding knife that any officer can flip open in this way, or even for a knife that he cannot, if he speculates that someone stronger or faster might be able to do so.

Saturday, 19 September


Concealed handgun permits by County in Illinois [John Lott's Website]

The Chicago Tribune has this county by county breakdown available here.

Monday, 14 September

Saturday, 12 September


Why would anyone buy recycled paper? 62% more expensive and recycled paper means less demand for paper and fewer trees [John Lott's Website]

Click on picture to enlarge

Here is a picture that Nikki Goeser took earlier today from a Staples store in the Nashville area.  This is a huge difference in price!  It takes more energy to recycle paper.  This price doesn't even include all the time costs involved with people separating out their garbage to be picked up.

Sunday, 06 September


61% of psychological research can't be replicated? How to figure out if there was fraud [John Lott's Website]

Assume that people only submit papers when they get statistically significant results.  If 10 different researchers run an experiment, but only 1 gets a statistically significant result (just out of randomness), you would expect that 9 of the 10 replications would get statistically insignificant results.  What might be interesting is to redo the experiments that weren't replicated some more times to see whether they ever get statistically significant results.  If you could redo these experiments 20 times and none of the results were statistically significant, it would raise real questions about whether fraud occurred.

From Science magazine:
We conducted replications of 100 experimental and correlational studies published in three psychology journals using high-powered designs and original materials when available. There is no single standard for evaluating replication success. Here, we evaluated reproducibility using significance and P values, effect sizes, subjective assessments of replication teams, and meta-analysis of effect sizes. The mean effect size (r) of the replication effects (Mr = 0.197, SD = 0.257) was half the magnitude of the mean effect size of the original effects (Mr = 0.403, SD = 0.188), representing a substantial decline. Ninety-seven percent of original studies had significant results (P < .05). Thirty-six percent of replications had significant results; 47% of original effect sizes were in the 95% confidence interval of the replication effect size; 39% of effects were subjectively rated to have replicated the original result . . . .
 It isn't clear what "subjectively rated" means, but it raises the question of whether people are making their results look more significant that they actually were.  However, this should just be the start of doing replications.

Saturday, 05 September


Latest piece at the Daily Caller: "11 Year Old Thwarts Home Invasion With A Gun, Cops Criticize Mother" [John Lott's Website]

11 yr old kills burglar breaking into home
My latest piece in the Daily Caller starts this way:
An 11-year-old boy shoots an almost 17-year-old who had broken into his home, saving his 4-year-old sister and scaring away another burglar. The burglars repeatedly tried to break into the home, finally succeeding on their third attempt.
The mother apparently purchased the handgun because of several previous attempted break-ins of her home.
One can only imagine the relief that the mother had that her children were safe.
Yet, the reaction from police and authorities was to question why the gun was so easily accessible. Police Sargent Brian Schellman told KTVI in St. Louis: “Just seems at this point that any one can pull the trigger on a weapon. Its very scary.”
Missouri is a state with a so-called “safe storage law,” one that imposes criminal liability when a minor under 18 gains access to a negligently stored firearm.
But no one seems to ask what would have happened if the children hadn’t been able to protect themselves.
The risk of accidental gun deaths is surely a concern, but it is much rarer than most people realize.  According to the Centers for Disease Control, 69 children under the age of 15 died from accidental gunshots.  Over 61 million children are that age in the population and about half live in homes that own guns. . . .
The rest of the piece is available here.


11-year-old fatally shoots one of two intruders who broke into home, saves his 4-year-old sister [John Lott's Website]

11 year old fatally shoots 16 yr old intruder, 2 intruders
A 16-year-old who broke into the home on his third attempt was shot and killed by an 11-year-old inside the home.  Fox News has this:
An 11-year-old Missouri boy shot and killed a 16-year-old boy during an attempted home invasion Thursday afternoon, St. Louis County police said.
Police said two suspects tried to break into the home north of downtown St. Louis twice before the shooting on Thursday. On the third try, authorities said the unidentified teen went through the home's unlocked front door while the 11-year-old and a 4-year-old girl were home alone. Police said the younger boy shot the teen in the head. The would-be burglar's body was found in the home's front foyer. . . .
The second suspect fled the scene after the shooting, but was later taken into custody. . . .
Fox2Now reported that police want to know why the children were home alone and why the 11-year-old had access to a gun. . . .
While the police wanted to know why the child had access to guns, what would have happened if the 11-year-old couldn't defend his sister?  John Lott and John Whitley has this research article from the Journal of Law and Economics on the risk of requiring that guns be locked up and not accessible.
Fox News from St. Louis has this story.  The AP story on the event is available here.


50-year-old concealed handgun permit holder defends himself against two armed robbers [John Lott's Website]

50 year old permit holder defends himself against two armed robbers
From Detroit's WXYZ-TV Channel 7 ABC:
. . . Police say a 50-year-old resident of the neighborhood was going to the ATM at a Citizens' Bank branch when he was approached by two young men that police describe as being around 18 years old. 
Those young men were armed with a sawed off rifle and a handgun.
Police are still trying to determine exactly what happened, but officers say the robbery victim has a Concealed Carry Permit and defended himself. 
All three men were injured and taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. . . .


Gun sales continue to skyrocket [The Liberty Sphere]

No sooner had local news outlets in upstate South Carolina and the mountains of North Carolina claimed this week that applications for concealed carry gun permits were way down, indicating a slowing of gun sales, than the national media reported that gun sales in August broke all sales records for firearms. 
Read it all.

Friday, 04 September


Yep, I'm back [The Liberty Sphere]

Evening my friends. Yes, I am back. Thanks for hanging in there with me even though I haven't been around.

I have felt your prayers and concern, and I deeply appreciate it. I long for the day when I can write more regularly. That day may be soon.

Thanks once again. A new Examiner will be forthcoming this evening. Stay tuned.

Friday, 28 August


The Latest Media Matters attack: CBS Evening News Allows me To "Falsely Connect Gun Laws To Higher Murder Rates" [John Lott's Website]

Since Media Matters latest attack piece leads off with just referencing their list of all their attacks on me, let me start with this link.
Lott is technically correct that the D.C. murder rate in 1976 -- the year a ban on private ownership or possession of handguns in nearly all circumstances went into effect -- was 26.8 people per 100,000 residents, and was 31.4 in 2008, the last year the ban was in place. But those two data points don't tell the whole story. For example, the murder rate in the last full year in which D.C. did not have a gun ban, 1975, was 32.8  -- higher than the murder rate when the ban ended.
People can judge for themselves what I have written about the crime rates in DC.  DC's murder rate was falling relative to the other largest fifty cities prior to the ban and they rising relative to those cities afterwards.  
Data from Australia also casts doubt on Lott's premise that more restrictions on firearms equal more murders. Following a series of mass shootings that culminated with the 1996 Fort Arthur massacre of 35 people, Australia enacted extremely restrictive gun laws that placed strong limits on firearm ownership -- especially for handguns and semi-automatic rifles -- and confiscated 650,000 privately owned guns

My comment was about gun bans.  The Australian gun buyback reduced gun ownership dramatically, but after that people were allowed to go out and buy guns again (though they now had to get licensed in many cases).  The purchases eventually raised the gun ownership rate back to where it was before the buyback.  A full discussion can be seen in my testimony available here.


"Uber and the Great Taxicab Collapse" [John Lott's Website]

The million dollar taxi cab medallions only came about from high taxi fees.  Should government protect certain business from competition?  Would the taxi cab fees been anywhere near as high as they have been without government protection?  Obviously, no.

Thursday, 27 August

Monday, 24 August


Yet another Obama administration official using a pseudonym to hide email accounts, Lois Lerner follows Lisa Jackson and many other Obama officials [John Lott's Website]

Lisa Jackson and many others at the EPA used a pseudonym to hide their identities.  In Jackson's case, she pretended to be a man, Richard Windsor, who actually won real awards granted by the EPA.  Now it turns out that Lois Lerner also disguised herself as a guy to hide her emails from prying eyes. The Washington Times reports:
. . . “In addition to emails to or from an email account denominated ‘Lois G. Lerner‘ or ‘Lois Home,’ some emails responsive to Judicial Watch’s request may have been sent to or received from a personal email account denominated ‘Toby Miles,’” Mr. Klimas told Judge Emmet G. Sullivan, who is hearing the case. 
It is unclear who Toby Miles is, but Mr. Klimas said the IRS has concluded that was “a personal email account used by Lerner.” . . .

Sunday, 23 August


New op-ed at the New York Daily News: Donald Trump's big lie about 'buying' politicians [John Lott's Website]

My newest piece, which is co-authored with Bradley Smith, starts this way:

For years, Trump was a major contributor to Democratic campaigns. From 1989 through 2011, Trump gave over $580,000 to Democrats, approximately $85,000 more than he donated to Republicans. He also contributed at least $100,000 to the Clinton Foundation. Since 2012, however, over 99% of his contributions have gone to Republicans.
Trump might have argued his political giving has changed simply because his views on health care, taxes and other issues have grown more conservative. But he has offered quite a different explanation. He says that he has given to politicians not out of conviction, but because then they “do whatever the hell you want them to do.”
These comments draw “amens” from both the angry American middle, which is furious at the political class, and knowing nods from the liberal political cognoscenti, which favors stricter campaign finance regulations that would make it easier for them to control political discussion through the elite media.
Trump’s claim to control politicians, however, appears to be nothing more than braggadocio. His one concrete example of puppetry, offered in the GOP debate: “With Hillary Clinton, I said, ‘Be at my wedding,’ and she came to my wedding . . . She had no choice, because I gave.” Leaving aside that this isn’t a pressing matter of government policy, attending a lavish Trump wedding hardly seems like something people that you have to pay people to attend.
Trump asserts that because he is financing his own campaign, he can “do what’s right for the people.” He attacks his political rivals as beholden to wealthy donors: “Bush is controlled by those people. Walker is controlled by those people.” . . .
The rest of the piece is available here.


Private contractor warned EPA about possibility of 'blowout' risk for tainted water at gold mine, EPA ignored warning [John Lott's Website]

After weeks of badgering by the media, the EPA finally releases a very damaging report that they were warned about the likelihood of an environmental disaster in Colorado.  The EPA ignored the warning.  From the Associated Press:
. . . EPA released the documents following weeks of prodding from The Associated Press and other media organizations. EPA and contract workers accidentally unleashed 3 million gallons of contaminated wastewater on Aug. 5 as they inspected the idled Gold King Mine near Silverton, Colorado. 
Among the documents is a June 2014 work order for a planned cleanup that noted that the old mine had not been accessible since 1995, when the entrance partially collapsed. The plan appears to have been produced by Environmental Restoration, a private contractor working for EPA. 
"This condition has likely caused impounding of water behind the collapse," the report says. "ln addition, other collapses within the workings may have occurred creating additional water impounding conditions. Conditions may exist that could result in a blowout of the blockages and cause a release of large volumes of contaminated mine waters and sediment from inside the mine, which contain concentrated heavy metals." . . .


Democratic pundits are publicly turning against Hillary Clinton [John Lott's Website]

It has taken some time, but you know Hillary is in trouble when even the most stalwart Democratic pundits are saying that she is not being honest.
-- Mark Shields tells Judy Woodruff on the PBS Newshour that Hillary should have turned over everything over at the very outset.  Shields points out that the judge who reprimanded Hillary this past week was appointed by Bill Clinton.
-- Ruth Marcus at the Washington Post tells Hillary to "stop digging the hole."
you ought to stop — now! — with the unconvincing claim that you did nothing different from your predecessors as secretary of state. . . .
And wiping the server 
— you did work on Watergate for the House Judiciary Committee, didn’t you? . . .
-- A few days earlier, Eugene Robinson also at the Washington Post had a change of heart about Hillary's email problems. He had until that point been defending Hillary.
. . . It’s about basic respect — for us and for the truth. 
Why, when she took office as secretary of state, did she decide to route official e-mails through a server in her suburban New York mansion? There is just one plausible explanation: She wanted control.  
Clinton was no stranger to the rules of the federal government. . . .  
Even if your name is Clinton, you have no right to unilaterally decide what is included and what is not. 
So I wish Hillary Clinton would be respectful enough to say, “I’m sorry. I was wrong.” I wish she wouldn’t insult our intelligence by claiming she only did what other secretaries of state had done. None of her predecessors, after all, went to the trouble and expense of a private e-mail server. . . .

Saturday, 22 August


The unintended consequences of plastic bag bans [John Lott's Website]

From Bloomberg:
When the city council in Austin, Texaspassed a single-use plastic shopping bag ban in 2013, it assumed environmental benefits would follow. The calculation was reasonable enough: Fewer single-use bags in circulation would mean less waste at city landfills. 
Two years later, an assessment commissioned by the city finds that the ban is having an unintended effect –- people are now throwing away heavy-duty reusable plastic bags at an unprecedented rate. The city's good intentions have proven all too vulnerable to the laws of supply and demand. 
What's true for Austin is likely true elsewhere. Plastic bag bans are one of America's most popular environmental measures of recent years . . . . 
plastic bags simply aren't that big of a problem. . . . . A more finely tuned litter survey in Fort Worth, Texas (reported in the Austin assessment) found that just 0.12 percent of the weight of litter in the city (which does not have a ban) comes from single-use bags. 
Nonetheless, . . . weight isn't the only measure of environmental impact. Single-use plastic bags pose outsized problems in the form of visual pollution on the landscape . . . . 
reducing the use of a product that's harmful to the environment is no guarantee of a positive environmental outcome. . . . To that end, the city encouraged residents to instead use reusable bags. Those bags have larger carbon footprints, due to the greater energy required to produce their stronger plastics, but the city figured the overall impact would be lower, as consumers got acquainted with the new, more durable product.  What the city didn't foresee is that residents would start treating reusable bags like single-use bags. . . .

Thursday, 20 August


Only 45% of electric vehicle owners this year have replaced their cars with a new electric vehicle [John Lott's Website]

One measure of whether people liked their electric vehicles is whether they replaced them with a new one when they traded their old car.  By that measure, despite the massive subsidies, electric vehicles aren't holding up very well.  From Edmunds:
only 45 percent of this year's hybrid and EV trade-ins have gone toward the purchase of another alternative fuel vehicle, down from just over 60 percent in 2012. Never before have loyalty rates for alt-fuel vehicles fallen below 50 percent.  
"For better or worse, it looks like many hybrid and EV owners are driven more by financial motives rather than a responsibility to the environment," says Edmunds.com Director of Industry Analysis Jessica Caldwell. "Three years ago, when gas was at near-record highs, it was a lot easier to rationalize the price premiums on alternative fuel vehicles. But with today's gas prices as low as they are, the math just doesn't make a very compelling case."  
To underscore the point, Edmunds calculates that at the peak average national gas price of $4.67/gallon in October 2012, it would take five years to break even on the $3,770 price difference between a Toyota Camry LE Hybrid ($28,230) and a Toyota Camry LE ($24,460). At today's national average gas price of $2.27/gallon, it would take twice as much time (10.5 years) to close the same gap. . . .


Massive EPA spill in Georgia, happened before Colorado, EPA hid spill [John Lott's Website]

So much for transparency by the Obama administration.  From Fox News:
Still reeling from a disaster it created at a Colorado gold mine, the EPA has so far avoided criticism for a similar toxic waste spill in Georgia. . . .  that accident took place five months ago, the hazard continues as heavy storms -- one hit the area Tuesday -- wash more soil into the creek.  
The sediment flows carry dangerous mercury, lead, arsenic and chromium downstream to the tourist destination of Lake Oconee, which then feeds into Oconee River -- home to many federally and state protected species. 
Lead in the soil is 20,000 times higher than federal levels established for drinking water, said microbiologist Dave Lewis, who was a top-level scientist during 31 years at the Environmental Protection Agency.  
He became a whistleblower critical of EPA practices . . . . 
"Clearly, the site is a major hazardous chemical waste dump, which contains many of the most dangerous chemical pollutants regulated by the EPA," Lewis wrote in a 2014 affidavit for a court case filed by local residents that failed to prevent the EPA project: creating a low-income housing development. . . .


UN agrees to let Iranian inspectors look at military nuclear sites, Obama adm couldn't get agreement on this key part so they let UN negotiate [John Lott's Website]

The most shocking part of this interview with Representative Ed Royce is the revelation that the Obama administration couldn't get agreement on this key part so they let UN negotiate it.


Mainstream media signals that Hillary in deep trouble [The Liberty Sphere]

One can tell easily enough that Hillary Clinton is in deep trouble with regard to her bid to become the Democratic nominee for president. The telltale sign is that the mainstream media, which has consistently treated Clinton as the darling of political correctness, is now engaging in serious journalism when it comes to reporting news both good and bad on the one who has long been considered the queen of America who is merely waiting her turn to occupy the Oval Office.
Read it! 

Sunday, 16 August


60 new classified documents found as Hillary continues to issue denials [The Liberty Sphere]

The Hillary Clinton bid for the Democratic Party nomination for president took another drubbing today as the State Dept. announced that at least 60 emails on her personal, private server can be designated as classified data. This news is bad enough, given that just yesterday at the Iowa State Fair, Clinton stated that she never had any classified data on her personal server or in any email she sent or received. 
Read it all.

Tuesday, 11 August


Hillary responds to court order but fails to comply [The Liberty Sphere]

Late on Monday Hillary Clinton and her two top aides responded to a deadline issued by the U.S. District Court of Appeals to turn over all documents related to official government business. All three failed to meet the deadline last Friday. Today, however, Clinton responded to the court order but still failed to comply. 
Read it all.

Sunday, 09 August


New study on Concealed Carry [John Lott's Website]

I hope that people will consider downloading a copy of our new study on concealed handguns available here.  The paper shows the huge changes that have been occurring in the number of concealed handgun permits and who have been getting those permits.  It also shows how changes in the crime rate have been related to changes in crime rates across states, and I think that the paper will serve as an important resource.  Finally, if we can get another thousand downloads on the paper, I think that it will force the academics who pay attention to the rankings on the Social Science Research Network to have to deal with the points that we have raised in the paper.


Hillary Clinton's nonexistent accomplishments in the US Senate [John Lott's Website]

It has been hard for Hillary Clinton's supporters to identify anything that she accomplished while Secretary of State.  Well, it should be just as hard for people to identify any real mark she made while in the US Senate.   Fifteen of the twenty bills she passed involved designating names for government buildings, honoring events, or congratulating people on their accomplishments (show in red).  The five bills of more substance are marked in blue.  Two of those five designated land in Puerto Rico as part of the National Wilderness Preservation System.  A third bill renewed a grant program "to develop coordinated respite care programs."  A fourth "authorize assistance for individuals with disabilities in foreign countries, including victims of landmines and other victims of civil strife and warfare, and for other purposes."  A fifth was to extend unemployment insurance in 2001, but there was nothing unique about that bill and it appears as if it was a gift to her so that she could claim that she had something passed.

So after eight years in the Senate, Clinton's legislative accomplishments boil down to two relatively small grant programs.

Hillary Clinton's 20 bills that were passed while she was in the US Senate.
S.Con.Res. 39 (109th): A concurrent resolution to express the sense of Congress on the Purple Heart.
Sponsor: Sen. Hillary Clinton [D-NY, 2001-2009]
Introduced: May 26, 2005
Passed Senate: Jul 28, 2005
S. 272 (109th): Caribbean National Forest Act of 2005
Sponsor: Sen. Hillary Clinton [D-NY, 2001-2009]
Introduced: Feb 3, 2005
Passed Senate: Jul 26, 2005
S.Con.Res. 112 (108th): A concurrent resolution supporting the goals and ideals of National Purple Heart Recognition Day.
Sponsor: Sen. Hillary Clinton [D-NY, 2001-2009]
Introduced: May 21, 2004
Passed Senate: Jul 22, 2004
S. 2334 (108th): Caribbean National Forest Act of 2004
Sponsor: Sen. Hillary Clinton [D-NY, 2001-2009]
Introduced: Apr 22, 2004
Passed Senate: Oct 10, 2004
S. 1108 (108th): 225th Anniversary of the American Revolution Commemoration Act
Sponsor: Sen. Hillary Clinton [D-NY, 2001-2009]
Introduced: May 22, 2003
Passed Senate: Apr 7, 2004
S.Con.Res. 40 (108th): A concurrent resolution designating August 7, 2003, as “National Purple Heart Recognition Day”.
Sponsor: Sen. Hillary Clinton [D-NY, 2001-2009]
Introduced: Apr 30, 2003
Passed Senate: Jul 25, 2003
S. 538 (108th): Lifespan Respite Care Act of 2003
Sponsor: Sen. Hillary Clinton [D-NY, 2001-2009]
Introduced: Mar 5, 2003
Passed Senate: Apr 10, 2003
S. 1777 (107th): International Disability and Victims of Landmines, Civil Strife and Warfare Assistance Act of 2002
Sponsor: Sen. Hillary Clinton [D-NY, 2001-2009]
Introduced: Dec 5, 2001
Passed Senate: Sep 13, 2002
S. 1622 (107th): Extended Unemployment Compensation bill
Sponsor: Sen. Hillary Clinton [D-NY, 2001-2009]
Introduced: Nov 1, 2001
Passed Senate: Dec 20, 2001


Panama moves to let citizens have guns: Public Safety Minister notes more guns "have allowed the US to reduce homicide" [John Lott's Website]

The Panama Post:
As Panama deals with increases in crime rates, forged gun permits, and rising gang activity, the government is set to lift the ban on firearm imports, in an effort to promote personal safety.
Public Safety Minister Rodolfo Aguilera said the country will follow in the footsteps of the United States and Switzerland, where the right to bear arms is believed to lead to fewer homicides.+
“Everything seems to indicate that there is no direct correlation in the aphorism that says more guns mean more crime,” said Aguilera, who explained that relaxed gun laws have allowed the United States to reduce the homicide rate over the last 20 years. . . .
Under the current law, in effect since 2012, only state security forces can import firearms. Meanwhile, the Central American Integration System (SICA) has called for a comprehensive review of Panama’s firearm-import ban before any action is taken by the National Assembly. . . .
Further information on Panama's gun laws are available here and here.

Saturday, 08 August


Donald Trump: acts like 3rd grader calling everyone names, claims he can't remember calling women names [John Lott's Website]

Trump calls women from all walks of life (including "Playboy Playmate, a new mom, a newspaper columnist") Fat pigs, dogs, slobs and disgusting animals.  What could possibly justify such childish comments?  There are a number of news stories now that confirm the facts in Megyn Kelly's question.  Trump claims that he doesn't remember making any of those comments.

In 2011, New York Times columnist Gail Collins wrote a column on Trump's financial problems.  So how does Trump respond?  He sends her back a copy of her column with "a circle drawn around Collins' face and these words: 'The Face of a Dog!'

Last year, Trump also called Huffington Post editor Arianna Huffington as "a dog" in a tweet.

That is the way presidents should respond to critics?  If there is one thing that I learned a long time ago, you are unlikely to change someone else's position and convince them you are right if you make the discussion personal.  How is a president going to get Congress to go along with him if he is constantly insulting them?

The list of Trump's derogatory comments against women is incredibly long (see the Washington Post, New York Daily News, and here is a 2012 article in the left wing publication Jezebel).  People can read the long list of them for themselves.

But it isn't just obnoxious attacks on those he disagrees with.  As one of the contestants on "The Apprentice" noted: “I think it was most uncomfortable when he had one [female] contestant come around the board table and twirl around."  Or “He asked the men to rate the women — he went down the line and asked the guys, ‘Who’s the most beautiful on the women’s team?’ ”

After first saying he couldn't remember these comments, he was in complete denial: “The question on the women, I didn’t say many of those things."  One comment years ago is easy to forget.  Regular comments over a very long period of time?  That is much harder to believe.

That said, I agree with Mark Levin that context is important, especially in the case of Rosie O’Donnell.  In her case, Rosie O'Donnell had been mocking Trump before he mocked her.  I still would have responded differently.  However, I don't think that context will explain Trump's response to Gail Collins.  Collins has written very inaccurate pieces about me before, but I never thought of responding in the way that Trump did.

Just as strange, Trump has gone on a rampage with comments attacking Megyn Kelly since her question on Thursday.  He first started out saying that she was unprofessional and "really unfair."  So a guy who wants to be president, who lashes out regularly at others, spends days lashing out at Kelly after she asks him a tough question.


While Donald Trump claims he believes "strongly in just about all conservative principles." he has been a Democrat, Independent, Republican and flirted with Ross Perot's Reform Party [John Lott's Website]

From CNN story in February 2011:
. . . In a recent interview, Trump declared that he believes "strongly in just about all conservative principles," is "pro-life" and against gay marriage. He has attacked President Obama's health care law and said that the United States has become the "laughingstock" of the world. 
This is the same Donald Trump who has changed party affiliation from Republican to Independent to Democrat and back to Republican, according to a report. 
Trump has said in interviews with CNN that he identifies more with Democrats than Republicans; that the party handles the economy better than Republicans; that President George W. Bush was "probably the worst president in the history of the United States"; and suggested that Bush should have been impeached for what Trump called "lies" over a "horrendous mistake": the Iraq war.  
In 1999, while flirting with running for president under Ross Perot's Reform Party, Trump told the New York Daily News that he supported abortion rights and universal health care.Trump and his representatives at the Trump Organization did not immediately respond to CNN's request for comment. . . . 
In a Monday interview, Trump defended his conservative bona fides."I'm a very conservative person. I'm very big into the military. I'm a great guy for defense," Trump told Greta Van Susteren of Fox News. "I am probably as conservative as anybody on your show, and that's going a pretty strong step." 
He added: "I'm a very conservative Republican. I believe strongly in just about all conservative principles." . . .
Does anyone believe that whatever Trump says that he believes today he will believe two years from now?

Friday, 07 August


Hillary, top aides ignore court ordered deadline in email scandal [The Liberty Sphere]

Democratic Party presidency hopeful and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton ignored a court order to provide information by today concerning official government documents she kept on her private email server. Her top aides at the State Dept., Human Abedin and Cheryl Mills, were also so ordered. They, too, ignored the court set deadline. Under the penalty of perjury as threatened by federal judge Emmett Sullivan, the information requested from Clinton and her two aides was due today. But the day came and went with no substantive response.
Click here to read the whole thing.


With all this money on a Facebook ad, Bloomberg's Everytown post on Kroger's Open Carry Policy gets just 292 likes [John Lott's Website]

I have been seeing this ad from Bloomberg's Everytown for sometime, so I was pretty stunned when I noticed that as of this afternoon it still only has 292 likes.   The point of the link is to get people to sign a petition that will be delivered to Kroger.  The 279 comments also appear to be overwhelmingly by people who disagree with Everytown.  I have no idea exactly how much money Bloomberg spends on these ads, and I am sure that this is only a tiny amount of money to him.  But for a group that claims to have 2.5 million members, this is a very weak showing.  Of course, this membership number is pretty meaningless as these aren't dues paying members, just people who have agreed to be on Bloomberg's email list.  I assume that a number of those are those who support gun ownership and just want to see what Bloomberg is up to.

Tuesday, 04 August


Link [The Liberty Sphere]

My newest at the Examiner:

Two major developments have occurred over the weekend and today in the ongoing scandal at the IRS and the controversy surrounding Hillary Clinton's attempt to hide key documents from her years as Secretary of State.
Read it all here......

Wednesday, 29 July


Presidential race in 2016 shaping up to be a barn burner [The Liberty Sphere]

The 2016 presidential race is shaping up to be a barn burner with deep differences among both Democratic and Republican candidates. Traditionally the campaign season begins with the first primary. But this year so many Republicans are running for their Party's nomination that it is safe to say the campaign season begins Aug. 6, 2015 -- the night of the first Republican debate. Fox News will air the debate, featuring some of its most recognizable anchors and reporters, such as Bret Baier, Megyn Kelly, and Chris Wallace.

The Republican debate on Aug. 6 will allow all of the GOP candidates to demonstrate to the nation how they handle themselves in a joint news conference, fielding questions from three journalists who are known to hold a candidate's feet to the fire on the hard issues. It is actually a big mistake to call these events a debate since none of the rules of a traditional debate apply. They never have in these televised events. Rather, these are joint news conferences during which each candidate is asked questions from reporters.

More will be written about which candidates have the best ideas, at least in the eyes of conservatives, in the weeks and months to come. But who as of now at least appears to be the best suited to carry the conservative and libertarian message to a new crop of American voters?

The answer to that question is a matter of opinion. Thus, the answer provided here will be opinion, but an opinion that is informed and armed with the facts.

At this point in time it is a bit too early to have one's mind made up. There is plenty of time to do that, and thus the only thing one can do is to cite those candidates who have garnered a generally favorable rating from likely Republican voters in the primaries. It goes without saying that the process at this point is quite fluid among GOP voters. Anything could happen and it is way too early to count anyone out.

As of today the candidates who appear to have gained general favorability are Scott Walker, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Bobby Jindal, Donald Trump, and Dr. Ben Carson. The next grouping of candidates cites those who have not been able to catch fire as of yet, for various reasons, yet they are within reach of the nomination nonetheless. They are Rick Perry, Carly Fiorina, Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum, and John Kasich. The last group out of the 16 candidates is made up of those that many if not most conservative/libertarian voters within the GOP consider unacceptable due to their stated stance on vital issues. Most believe that these candidates could not get elected anyway, and they are Jeb Bush, Chris Christy, Lindsey Graham, and George Pataki.

Over on the other side the Democratic hopefuls are a train wreck. Hillary's negatives are through the roof, and most view her as basically a dishonest person. The slow drip of news about the various scandals in which she has been involved are not going away. But her rivals for the Democratic nomination have their own baggage.  Most are way too far out of the mainstream to be considered by the general public.  

Tuesday, 28 July


Veteran reporter raises questions about Hillary [The Liberty Sphere]

The campaign for the Democratic nomination for president took an ominous turn Monday when a veteran news reporter raised questions concerning Hillary Clinton's private email server. The private server has been one of the issues conservatives have raised in their probe into charges of corruption at the State Dept. while Hillary was Secretary of State.

So far the investigation into Hillary's role in various scandals -- Benghazi, Fast and Furious, and the use of a secretive investigator who was forbidden by the White House but was on the Clinton payroll -- has been largely a Republican endeavor. Democrats never spoke about it nor showed any interest in delving into it. The mainstream news media helped Democrats by simply not reporting the Republican led probe. This has now changed.

Andrea Mitchel, the veteran NBC news reporter who is known to conservatives as one who will slant her stories and comments to favor Democrats, took a surprising turn toward objectivity. Mitchel stated that she attended a security conference during which she spoke to officials on both sides of the spectrum. She further stated that while there are charges and counter charges, no one can give an adequate explanation for why a cabinet secretary would need a private email server at home, unless she wished to thwart inquiries into her actions.

The special congressional committee that is investigating Hillary discovered 4 emails from her private server that were designated as classified. Hillary had already declared in the strongest terms that she had no classified material on the private server and neither did she send classified material from that server.

These statements have now been proved false. When the congressional committee received the latest batch of material, 40 emails were sent from Hillary's private server that contained the 4 classified emails. But there are hundreds if not thousands more to be turned over to Congress from the State Dept. If 4 classified emails out of 40 have been discovered, that number could grow to hundreds if not thousands.

Monday, 27 July


Report: IRS used donor lists to target taxpayers for audits [The Liberty Sphere]

The IRS scandal during which the taxing agency targeted conservative organizations for delays, harassment, and outright persecution has confirmed the charge that the IRS is a rogue, lawless, and corrupt organization. This fact was further confirmed by a report released last Friday by Judicial Watch (JW) that shows that the IRS used the donor lists of tax exempt, conservative organizations to decide which citizens it wished to target for audits. In other words, if you donated money to one of these organizations you probably would be audited.

JW indicated that it knew such records existed, but the IRS refused to release them. However, through the Freedom of Information Act JW forced the IRS to release the documents in question. The documents show that the IRS would focus its auditing power toward those who made donations to the tax exempt organizations in question.

In 2010, the Senate Finance Committee Chairman at the time, Max Baucus, D-Mont., wrote to the IRS Commissioner at the time, Douglas Shulman, stating that as a matter of IRS policy the tax exempt groups should be "surveyed." Shulman responded in a letter to Baucus in February of 2011 that within the year the IRS would begin a new program that would focus its efforts on the tax exempt organizations.

JW, however, states that the documents it received last Friday indicate that the new program was already being implemented in 2010, as soon as Shulman received the letter from Baucus. But by 2011 the new process was made the official policy of the IRS.

Although at first glance the information contained above seems to be no big deal, this turn of events represents blockbuster legal ramifications. The IRS began to levy a 35 percent gift tax on citizens who gave large donations to tax exempt organizations. However, the U.S. Supreme Court long ago had already declared that a gift tax of this nature is unconstitutional.

But the IRS began to levy such a tax and targeted for audits those persons who gave large donations to tax exempt groups. Going forward after the implementation of the policy, a key figure who shows up again is none other than Lois Lerner, who lied to Congress concerning her role in the IRS scandal which was designed to hamstring opponents of Barack Obama.

Interestingly, in spite of the fact that much of the information that is crucial to the scandal has been destroyed or withheld, the Acting IRS Commissioner at the time, Steven Miller, ordered that no more resources be spent investigating the audit issue and that the case be officially closed.

But as the nation now knows, this case is far from being closed. This, plus Hillary Clinton's Benghazi scandal at the State Dept., represent the scandal of all scandals that will haunt the candidate and countless personnel within the Obama administration in the foreseeable future and may serve to permanently taint the legacy of Barack Obama.


Flouting The Law, Some New Yorkers Won't Register Guns [NRA-ILA News]

New York state has some of the toughest gun laws in the country. Compliance with those laws is another matter.New York passed a broad package of gun regulations after the school shooting in Newtown, Conn., despite the objections of hunters and gun rights advocates. Now it appears that many gun owners are refusing to comply with a key provision that requires the registration of so-called assault weapons.


Texans protest Obama’s latest gun control plan [NRA-ILA News]

Texans are firing back at a federal plan to prevent some Social Security beneficiaries from buying guns if they don’t or can’t manage their own financial affairs.Some say the proposal — which would have the Social Security Administration comply with procedures already in place to prevent gun sales to drug addicts, felons and more — is the latest move by President Barack Obama’s administration to restrict firearm use.


Johnson, Grassley Question State Department Gun Regulations [NRA-ILA News]

Senators Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, and Charles Grassley (R-IA), Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry requesting details about the State Department’s proposed changes to the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR). The proposed regulations, as written, may require law-abiding citizens to procure “proper authorization” from the government before publicly speaking about firearms and other materials.


Australia: Lever-action shotgun to be banned by Prime Minister Tony Abbott [NRA-ILA News]

Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s dramatic intervention will stop 7000 Adler lever-action shotguns entering Australia. The imports will be suspended for at least six months, until the National Firearms Agreement review process is completed.


North Carolina: NRA-Supported Omnibus Bill May be Taken Up by Full Senate Today! [NRA-ILA News]

As previously reported, House Bill 562, the NRA-supported omnibus, pro-gun reform bill, was reported out of the Senate Judiciary II Committee last week on a voice vote with no changes.  The bill is now on the Senate Calendar, and could be voted on by the full Senate as early as today.

Sunday, 26 July


Like clockwork Obama team uses criminal shooting to push gun control [The Liberty Sphere]

Since I could not get the following article published, I am posting it right here on The Liberty Sphere. Thanks for reading, my friends.

Almost as soon as the smoke dispersed from the firearm used by the Louisiana shooter who killed two at a movie theater Thursday night, Barack Obama's team and some of his supporters were once again using a tragedy to push for gun control. Obama crony Rahm Emanuel once famously stated, "Never let a crisis go to waste." The Obama team took Rahm's statement to heart. Each time there is a shooting, the minions of the gun ban movement leap into action, inundating the news airwaves with the false meme that had there only been more gun control, the massacre would have never happened.

CNN's anchor reporters the night and morning following the Louisiana shooting wasted no time to chime in, stating that the nation needs to take a more serious look at the issue of gun control. As for Barack Obama himself, before the shooting had taken place he gave an interview with the BBC during his trip to Kenya during which he stated that the biggest frustration of his presidency is the inability to get anything done about gun violence and pass gun control legislation.

Once again, the footsoldiers of the progressive anti-gun movement would mandate that all citizens be deprived of the most effective means of self-defense in order to prevent a few criminals and emotionally unstable persons from getting them. Other than the fact that the U.S. Constitution specifically forbids such laws, this thinking throws all of the components of logic and common sense out the window.

Each year in America between 32,000 and 40,000 citizens on average are killed in car wrecks. Yet Americans continuously shy away from any suggestion that they give up their autos and opt instead for public transportation. Why? Americans like their freedom. They want to make their own choices and do their own thing apart from the watchful eye of government. And this fact is true although 40,000 will die behind the wheel. Most would say that it is up to the individual to remember, "Let the buyer beware." It is up to the individual to put into practice the commonsense measures that enhance the person's chances of staying out of car accidents, or, increase their chances of surviving if they are in such an accident.

So, why is there no push in Washington to ban cars and trucks? Using the logic of the anti-gun cabal, given that 40,000 citizens will die using these instruments of death, Americans should thus be prevented from owning, possessing, and using autos. The thinking of the progressives is all too clear -- if a tiny percentage get hurt or killed using instruments that tens of millions use, force those who use their guns and autos legally, carefully, and with appropriate caution, to give them up even if they are not guilty of any crime. Do not focus on punishing the perpetrators. Punish everyone even though they have never used their firearms or their autos in a haphazard or dangerous fashion.

The latest incident involving firearm abuse by a deranged psych case is no logical reason to deprive all citizens of the right to keep and bear arms. Most Americans are now smart enough to see through this deception that pushes an ominous agenda.

Thursday, 23 July


Obama continues to ignore suffering of victim families [The Liberty Sphere]

"One by one they came to Washington, D.C. from across the country Monday to testify before Congress concerning the consequences of the failure of the Obama administration to enforce U,S, immigration law. Gut wrenching accounts of family members who were murdered in cold blood by illegal immigrants were recounted to senators and representatives, including the father of Kathryn (Kate) Steinle..."

Read it all.

Tuesday, 21 July


US House to consider cutting off funding from sanctuary cities [The Liberty Sphere]

"Several news organizations reported today that the U.S. House of Representatives will submit a bill this week that would block funding for so-called sanctuary cities. A similar bill is being formulated in the U.S. Senate."

Read the rest.

Sunday, 19 July


Citizen ire meets common sense in Tenn. killings [The Liberty Sphere]

"In the days since an emotionally unstable Islamic extremist killed four Marines and one Navy man, and wounded several others, the families of the victims, local citizens, and members of the U.S. military are increasingly expressing their ire at the federal government for policies that have failed to provide reasonable security in a world that is growing more dangerous by the day."

Read the rest

Saturday, 18 July


Immigration a top issue for 2016 presidential election [The Liberty Sphere]

"All of the signs point to the fact that the subject of immigration will be a top issue for the 2016 presidential election. Many erroneously cite Donald Trump as the instigator of voter ire regarding the failure of Barack Obama to enforce the law when it comes to those who enter and stay in the United States illegally. The facts, however, show a growing discontent bordering on rage on the part of most citizens toward immigration policy. That rage has been simmering beneath the surface for at least a decade. Trump merely tapped into the discontent that was already there among the citizenry."

Continue reading

Friday, 17 July


Marine killer inspired by global jihad [The Liberty Sphere]

"The latest information concerning the Marine killer in Chattanooga, Tenn. indicates strong, if not irrefutable, evidence that the killer was inspired and radicalized by the global jihad."

Read the rest

Wednesday, 15 July


Israel forms anti-Iranian nuke deal with Saudis [The Liberty Sphere]

"One of the biggest  shockers to emerge from the fallout of the newly signed nuclear agreement between the United States and Iran is the news, reported today, that Israel has formed an anti-nuke alliance with Saudi Arabia against Iran."

Read the rest....

Tuesday, 14 July


State Dept. withheld key Hillary emails from investigators into Benghazi scandal [The Liberty Sphere]

A spokesman for the House Select Committee on Benghazi told reporters today that the State Department withheld at least two crucial emails that are said to be at the center of the Benghazi scandal. U.S. ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens, and three members of his security detail were murdered in cold blood by terrorists associated with al Qaeda.
Read it all

Monday, 13 July


IRS misses court ordered deadline yet again [The Liberty Sphere]

The IRS has missed once again a court ordered deadline today to turn over newly discovered Lois Lerner emails in the ongoing scandal in which the agency used its vast power to harass, prosecute, and attempt to jail members of conservative groups prior to the 2012 presidential election.   Read the rest.....

Saturday, 11 July


IRS harassment of conservatives spreads to other agencies [The Liberty Sphere]

New information has come to light that the gargantuan scandal revolving around attempts by the IRS to thwart, delay, intimidate, and prosecute conservatives prior to the 2012 presidential election was not confined to the IRS. The bombshell updated information, reported by several news outlets and government watchdog groups this week, indicates that the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the FBI were also involved.

Read the rest.....

Friday, 26 June


Liberty oriented citizens blast Supreme Court [The Liberty Sphere]

Two controversial decisions in two days yielded some harsh words from liberty oriented citizens today for the U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS). A good example is that after reserving the harshest rhetoric of his long career for the court's decision on Obamacare yesterday, Justice Antonin Scalia obviously wasn't finished. Scalia continued his acerbic sarcasm today in reaction to the court's decision on gay marriage, stating that the decision reads like a fortune cookie.

Continue reading here.

Thursday, 25 June


Reaction to Obamacare ruling indicates deep discontent [The Liberty Sphere]

Reaction to the SCOTUS ruling Thursday on Obamacare was swift and scathing. Kentucky senator and presidential candidate Rand Paul, R-Ky., stated that "we have made a big mistake here." Gov. Scott Walker, R-Wis., who is also expected to become a presidential candidate, said that the court's decision means that Republicans and others who oppose the law must redouble their efforts to repeal and replace Obamacare. Even Supreme Court veteran Justice Antonin Scalia reserved the most vehement reaction of his entire career for his colleagues on the court whom he said ignored the rule of law. He sarcastically referred to the majority decision as SCOTUScare.

Continue reading here.

Wednesday, 24 June


Key senator says new gun control unlikely after Charleston shooting [The Liberty Sphere]

A key U.S. senator stated yesterday that despite calls for more gun control following the Charleston shooting, new measures that would place more restrictions on firearms are highly unlikely. Various and sundry gun control groups, including civil rights activists and some within Congress, always use shootings such as that which took place in Charleston, S.C. as an opportunity to blame the availability of guns is America as the single most important factor that leads deranged shooters to commit mass murder.

Continue reading here.

Tuesday, 23 June


Hillary's vulnerability increasingly clear [The Liberty Sphere]

From the start the Hillary Clinton campaign for the Democratic nomination for president has seemed to be odd at the very least. The most obvious characteristic for Clinton has been a shocking willingness to limit the access of reporters. Amid the complaints of these reporters, however, have been a few rare voices that notice a vulnerability in the candidate that has never been present in her previous campaigns.

Continue reading here.


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