Tuesday, 01 September

12:51

"My life's work": Alison Parker's dad writes about fighting for gun... [Gun News]

Distraught but determined to take on US gun lobby ... Alison Parker's father Andy talks to CNN's Chris Cuomo. Martinsville, Virginia: Last Wednesday, my daughter Alison was brutally struck down in the prime of her life by a deranged gunman.

08:36

Editorial: Guns = death [Gun News]

Guns = death: A new analysis reveals that states with the fewest firearm fatalities have some of the toughest gun-control laws, and vice versa States with the toughest gun laws suffer gun-related deaths at the lowest rates, says a study that destroys the myth-making of America's Second Amendment absolutists. The zealots say it all the time: The more freely guns are made available, the fewer people will die from bullet wounds.

07:40

And a stupid American does the same thing. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

U.S. needs a 28th Amendment
My email to him:
-----Original Message-----
From: georgemason1776@aol.com
To: cleaveland1000@comcast.net
Sent: Tue, Sep 1, 2015 9:36 am
Subject: Starting a bloody civil war seems an odd way to "prevent gun violence."
Since you don't seem to live in any real world I recognize, can you perhaps suggest what I should be smoking to duplicate your hallucinatory results, should I wish to leave this reality for your dopey Wonderland? I guess you haven't been paying attention to what has been happening since the various state laws have been passed since Sandy Hook. All of them, I repeat ALL of them, have been nullified by "I Will Not Comply" armed civil disobedience. In CT they have an 85% non-compliance rate. In New York it is estimated to be 90%, with county sheriffs in upstate threatening to arrest any state cops who come into their jurisdiction seeking to enforce the wildly misnamed SAFE Act. In CO, I have led smuggling efforts and public demonstrations flouting their law. Same goes for WA state and OR, where we have had armed marches on the capitol steps, breaking Bloomberg's laws and daring them to do anything about it. We even held a "background-check-free" arms expo/gun show in violation of the law in WA, daring the authorities to do anything about it. They did nothing. The politicians in each of these states have not sent one raid party to enforce their unconstitutional diktats. Indeed, they seem, after almost three years of such armed resistance, not to know whether to defecate or go blind. So who, you stupid, silly little collectivist cypher, are you going to get to enforce your "benevolent" tyranny? Planning on coming yourself? No. I didn't think so. But until you do, until you decide to have the courage of your so-called convictions and send men with state sanctioned violence to our doors, then kindly shut up. You're boring the rest of us with your impotent prattle. But, by all means, if it makes you feel better, go back and take another toke of whatever it is you're smoking.
Mike Vanderboegh
http://sipseystreetirregulars.blogspot.com

07:20

Stupid Brit collectivist proposes to repeal the 2nd Amendment (from the safety of across the ocean, of course). [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

"Bang! Another one bites the dust: repeal the Second Amendment!"
My reply, awaiting approval:
You tried disarming American citizens once and we handed your mighty empire its ass. We can do the same to the neo-collectivists in this country anytime they feel froggy. "Stopping gun violence" by provoking a bloody civil war seems rather ironic and certainly a stupid violation of the Law of Unintended Consequences.
Mike Vanderboegh
http://sipseystreetirregulars.blogspot.com

04:23

Babies named after guns on the rise in US despite shooting sprees with thousands following trend [Gun News]

Around 88 people are shot dead in the US every day, but those horrifying statistics are not doing anything to dampen America's love of weapons. In fact, a worryingly significant minority of parents are showing their devotion to the Second Amendment by naming their children after weapons.

01:49

Probably interesting only to me, but I find it fascinating. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

One of hobbies earlier in my life was (and remains so, although I have no time for it) historical archaeology, especially that related to the Revolutionary War and Civil War periods. I once located a long-forgotten steamboat in the old bed of the Mississippi, even enlisting the help of a professional marine archaeologist from Louisiana with an underwater magnetometer. Unfortunately she lies in federally-protected wetlands and nothing beyond locating it could be accomplished. It remains where it came to rest, beneath 40 plus feet of muck and water. I also have assisted archaeologists with historical research backing up their field work, most notably at old Fort Pickering in Memphis. So, in looking for something else, I ran across "bellarmines," also known in some contexts as "witch bottles," and I found this fascinating: An American Witch Bottle.

00:51

Sid Vicious was dead on the money about John Boehner. "John Boehner is 'alcoholic,' 'lazy,' 'banal.'" Impeaching Clarence Thomas. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

"Boehner is despised by the younger, more conservative members of the House Republican Conference," Blumenthal wrote to Clinton. "They are repelled by his personal behavior." "He is louche, alcoholic, lazy, and without any commitment to any principle," he added. . .
"He is not Gingrich, the natural leader of a 'revolution,' riding the crest into power," Blumenthal continued as he described Boehner, R-Ohio. "He is careworn and threadbare, banal and hollow, holding nobody's enduring loyalty."
Meanwhile, George Soros' homosexual hitman of Media Matters, conceived a plan: impeach Clarence Thomas.

00:17

IFOA Offers Concessions on Guns Following Roanoke Murders [Gun News]

True enough. Add to that no shortage of rage directed at those who defend the right to keep and bear arms accompanied by frenzied opportunistic blood dancing and demands that " we do something, " unspecified, naturally, and it looks like it's once more time for gun owners to hold fast and not give an inch.

Monday, 31 August

19:59

States with tough gun laws have fewer shooting deaths: study [Gun News]

States with strict gun laws were found to have a low-number of gun-related deaths, a new study found. The harder states make it to get guns - like New York - the fewer people die because of them, a new analysis of firearm restrictions shows.

15:46

Farmers Branch petition opposes plan to turn old post office into gun store, shooting range [Gun News]

Speaking of petitions The inbox is clogged this morning with Farmers Branch residents wringing their hands over tomorrow's city council vote concerning a request to convert a former post office into a gun range and a gun store next to wait a school? That's right: Texas Legends has asked Farmers Branch for the OK to turn a post office at 14202 Proton Road , near Midway and Spring Valley, into "an indoor firearms training facility that will include two gun ranges, classrooms, offices and a small retail component," according to council documents .

11:27

With less training required, more central Ohioans file to carry concealed guns [Gun News]

More central Ohioans are filing for licenses to carry concealed guns in Franklin County after the state legislature relaxed training requirements earlier this year. So many applications are flooding into the Franklin County sheriff's office that county commissioners will vote Tuesday on whether to hire an additional staff member to keep up with the higher volume of requests.

07:13

Is Gun Violence Due To Dangerous People Or Dangerous Guns? [Gun News]

The killing of two journalists in Virginia last week has reignited a national conversation on mass shootings and gun control. No one wants dangerous people with dangerous guns, but different parties point in different directions when it comes to laying the blame for gun violence or proposing appropriate policies moving forward.

04:53

Kurt Schlichter: "Anti-Gun Rights Fascists Fail Again." [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

Then Hollywood moguls weighed in with their insights from behind their phalanxes of armed guards. A producer of Modern Family began demanding mass gun confiscation, not answering the begged question of whether the soft, sheltered affluent liberals his cute show depicts plan to strap on their Kevlar vests and go kick down the doors of gun owners who might not share Hollywood’s willingness to ignore the Second Amendment. . .

Obama has called his inability to massively infringe upon the constitutional rights of the American people his greatest disappointment as president, and it no doubt is. The idea that hundreds of millions of Americans are able to protect themselves without government assistance, like proud, independent citizens, must gnaw at him. But even more distressing to Obama and his coterie of liberal fascists is the knowledge that the presence of 300 million guns out there means that the American people retain their own absolute veto power.
Sure, liberals never met a civil right that actually exists in the Constitution that they didn’t want to violate, but they have a special hatred for the Second Amendment. That our citizenry is armed constrains the progressives in a way that their acknowledged (or, at least, not denied) heroes like Castro and Chavez, and their unacknowledged role models like Hitler and Mussolini, were not constrained. Without a liberal government monopoly on force, this country can only tilt so far to the left before a critical mass of Americans says, “Nah, I don’t think so,” and the progressives have to convince some group of suckers to don the uniforms that our Constitution-loving military would largely abandon and go risk dying to force faculty-lounge fantasies upon a rebellious and deadly citizenry. . .
And, most decisively, the left has lost practically – Americans have decided that we’re going to keep our guns because the alternative is to submit completely to the likes of Obama and his fascist friends. If they want to live the Aussie dream of confiscating our guns they’ll have to talk millions of Democrat constituents into training and arming-up to do it, and that’s not happening. Not only would it be super dangerous, but it seems like hard work. Liberals are putting gun control on the back burner for now, but they have not forgotten it. Their inability to disarm the American people and render them servile subjects unable to protect themselves and their rights remains liberalism’s most profound disappointment. They will try again. Which is why we Americans must remain ever locked and loaded.

04:47

Busy day ahead. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

Hoping to get the A/C fixed by an expert today and still have time to get to the oncologist's to get my blood drawn to determine when I'm going to get a blood transfusion for my anemia. If everything works right, I'll have more later.

04:39

Well worth the hour: Wargaming and the Pacific War by Norman Friedman. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

Sweltering through the weekend without A/C (they're supposed to be here today) I spent two hours (I saw it twice through) watching a fascinating presentation by naval historian Norman Friedman on the subject: "'Visualizing a Future War: Wargaming at Newport and the Pacific War' was a portion of “Endgame: August 1945 in Asia and the Pacific,” a symposium hosted by the Institute for the Study of Strategy and Politics."
Here's his bio from the U.S. Naval Institute.
This presentation not only tells you specifics about the strategy and tactics of the Pacific naval war, but is very thought-provoking about the importance of war gaming ahead of conflict that is realistic enough to force you to think through and overcome the challenges. This is especially true of thinking through to the end state that you want to accomplish. The Japanese, Friedman points out, did not do the same sort of war gaming as we did, and consequently failed to anticipate things like battle wastage of ships and pilots (leading them to face critical shortages of both quite early on) as well as failing to learn how to maximize battle damage repair, how to speed up the deck turn-around time on carriers, etc. But most importantly was their strategic failure to grasp the consequences (and clearly state them) of what the end state they sought was and whether it was attainable. Lessons here for all of us, students of history and future combatants as well.

04:09

Tighter gun control not the answer [Gun News]

On Wednesday, three individuals were gunned down in rural Virginia in the midst of a live, on-location news broadcast. Two of them - the news reporter and the cameraman - died at the scene and a third is recovering.

04:02

Four from Herschel Smith. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

MBV NOTE: Please keep Herschel's son Joshua in your prayers. He has just gone through some major back surgery.
Adam Gopnik On Guns As Symbols
The Second Amendment And Illegal Aliens
Here Is Your War On Drugs
The Fargo Police Are Imbeciles

00:00

Recent shootings call for stricter gun control laws [Gun News]

On the morning of Aug. 26, Alison Parker and Adam Ward were shot and killed during a live television interview on CBS Roanoke affiliate WDBJ7-TV by former employee Vester Lee Flanagan II. Viewers had to experience the horror of watching Flanagan harm three innocent lives while they were presenting a local tourism story at an outdoor shopping mall.

Sunday, 30 August

19:51

liberalism and law school faculties [Of Arms and the Law]

An interesting study. Law faculties are the most liberal/left of all 60+ categories of attorneys, more so than other fields where you might expect the practitioners to be liberal -- civil rights lawyers, criminal defense lawyers, government lawyers.

19:49

Hunting season opens Tuesday in New Mexico [Gun News]

Hunting seasons for doves, blue grouse, band-tailed pigeons and squirrels opens Tuesday in Dona Ana County, and other areas of the state, according to a news release from the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish . Licenses, maps, questionnaires and other related materials are available to hunters on the Game and Fish website, www.wildlife.state.nm.us.

15:32

Slain reporter's dad on gun control: 'We cannot be intimidated' [Gun News]

It's been less than a week since murder set their lives onto a new course, into roles they never wanted to take on and into a battle they never planned to fight. But only five days in, Andy and Barbara Parker -- the parents of slain television journalist Alison Parker -- speak about gun control with a passion as if they'd spent their lifetimes fighting for it.

14:33

South Carolina's Fever for Concealed Guns May Be Cooling [Gun News]

South Carolina's Fever for Concealed Guns May Be Cooling COLUMBIA - The rush in South Carolina for concealed weapons permits may finally be slowing down. Check out this story on WLTX.com: http://on.wltx.com/1Eu7Mda According to figures by the State Law Enforcement Division provided to The Greenville News , the agency issued 64,412 permits in 2014, a drop of almost 20,000.

13:19

"And the truth shall set you free." For those of you interested in the latest episode in the Kerodin soap opera: "George Patton" pulls Kerodin's fiscal shorts down around his ankles. What's exposed ain't pretty. [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

I got a phone call this afternoon, asking me "Have you seen what 'George Patton" is doing to Kerodin? Who is he?" I had to admit that I hadn't looked beyond the reference to him at Kenny Lane's site the other day and I had no idea who 'George Patton' might be. After sketching out in brief some of what George Patton had done, my caller asked, "Has anybody heard of a low-yield atomic explosion in Idaho?" I had to agree that Christian Hyman, aka Sam Kerodin, probably wasn't going to take this well at all. No doubt the mighty K will have his own informed guess about who General Patton is. It is evident that whoever he is, the new incarnation of GSP doesn't know how to spell my name. See "Why Miller and Why Now."
The attacks by the Kerodins centered on five people: Kenny Lane, JC Dodge, Mike Vanderbough, Jim Miller (and) Sam Culper.
It turns out that over the past two days 'George Patton' has been subjecting Hyman/Kerodin to a rolling artillery barrage of specific details and analysis (as well as some pointed ridicule). See, in addition to the link above:
Who Benefits Part 1
Who Benefits Part 2
Who Benefits Part 3
In addition, he has posted some Downfall Fuhrer Bunker send-ups: here and here. Part One:
Here is Part Two:
Given such creativity, I believe I can find it in my heart to forgive General Patton for getting my name wrong. Heck, everybody else does. And like those of you who have been following this story since H/K began attacking me with a view to hijacking the Three Percent philosophy, I'll just get me some popcorn and watch what happens next. (Well, I would if I could still eat popcorn, maybe just a cup of hot Earl Grey tea.)
LATER: Other than a mild case of vicarious schadenfreude over all these chickens coming home to roost (and defecate) upon Christian Hyman's head, there is one question that I am seriously wanting to hear the answer to. This business cost me my then best friend, Peter White of WRSA. That still hurts deep down in a place I cannot reach. The only thing I am keenly interested in knowing is when will even Pete reach his gag reflex? Everyone else who followed Pete over to Kerodin's dark side has contacted me to apologize, but as I have written before no apologies are necessary, and that includes Pete. But I am interested in when he too will have finally had enough of the unrepentant federal extortionist ex-con. When will enough be enough?

11:54

Early DC gun control and the burning of Washington [Of Arms and the Law]

My Primal Scream has an interesting post on the matter. From 1803 onward, DC forbade its militiamen to show up for muster while carrying arms, and also tightly controlled the possession of flints. By 1812 only a third of its military had the required muskets, and those of course lacked flints. Congress protested without avail.

While there were a great many causes for the American rout at the Battle of Bladensburg (terrible tactics, divided command, use of Revolution War drill in place of the more modern systems evolved out of the Napoleonic Wars), the fact that Washington's militia was largely disarmed and short on flints (and got into position late because it took time to issue the flints) certainly didn't help things.

11:20

Bernard Sanders, Democratic presidential candidate, promises more gun control if elected [Gun News]

Presidential candidate Sen. Bernard Sanders , who is surging in the polls and becoming a threat to Democratic front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton in early-primary states, pushed back Sunday against her campaign's charge that he is soft on gun control by promising that he will pass new gun-control laws, if elected. "I do not accept the fact that I have been weak on this issue.

07:07

Gun Myths and the Roanoke Shootings [Gun News]

Bernie Sanders' record skews way to the left on one issue after another: health care, taxes, campaign finance, international trade, abortion and the Iraq war. Gun control? Not so much.

05:21

“Cause we already roll up in gangs anyway. There should be six or seven black mother f**ckers, see that white person, and then lynch their ass. Let’s turn the tables. . . We are already getting killed out here so what the f**k we got to lose?” [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

And we are here as on a darkling plain
Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
Where ignorant armies clash by night. -- Dover Beach by Matthew Arnold.
What have you got to lose? More than you can possibly imagine, you ignorant ass. File this under: "Be careful what you wish for, you may get it." "Black Activists Call for Lynching and Hanging of White People and Cops."
Some hghlights: “Find a mother f**ker that is alone. Snap his ass, and then f***in hang him from a damn tree. Take a picture of it and then send it to the mother f**kers.”
"We “just need one example,” and “then people will start watchin’.” This will turn the tables on s**t, he said. He said this will start “a trickle-down effect.” He said that when one white person is hung and then they are just “flat-hanging,” that will start the “trickle-down effect.” He continued, “Black people are good at starting trends.”
So, I wonder, are they going to be wearing black sheets instead of white sheets?

04:47

"Injun Country." More along the lines of "Black Lives Don't Matter (in fact they don't mean sh-t to other black folks)." [Sipsey Street Irregulars]

"Injun Country" -- a black or hispanic ghetto area off-limits to white people for safety reasons, as in "He's going to Crown Fried Chicken at this hour? Yo, that's injun country..." -- Urban Dictionary.
"A summer so lawless in D.C., it feels like the Wild West."
For a while there, the spirit of the Wild West returned to our nation’s capital in the guise of the stagecoach. In its day, the stagecoach epitomized the Wild West. It traveled difficult and dangerous routes transporting drivers and passengers, many of whom were worried sick about whether they would make it home to their families. At times, the threat was so great that stagecoach owners avoided stops where safety was jeopardized. This week, the District’s stagecoach went down that path.
On Monday, Metro announced that buses would avoid nighttime stops for one week in the 2400 block of Elvans Road SE because someone had fired at the W8 bus the previous Friday night, striking a passenger. Last month, a Metro bus driver was threatened at Savannah and 19th streets SE. Andre Nickens, who was waiting at the bus stop in the Elvans Road cul-de-sac, told WUSA (Channel 9) that “it’s the danger zone right here. This whole neighborhood is dangerous.” On Sunday and Monday, WUSA reported, the W8 bus did not travel down the dead-end street after 7 p.m.

03:53

Gun Control a Key Hillary Clinton Campaign Component [Gun News]

She wants an "assault weapons" ban, a "high capacity" magazine ban, and myriad new regulations on gun purchases and purchasers, as well as new record-keeping requirements on gun owners. In short, she wants national laws to mirror the kind of laws we see in Chicago, California, and New York.

Saturday, 29 August

23:40

Pikes Peak region teachers take advantage of free concealed-weapon classes [Gun News]

Signs at entrances to a Falcon School District 49 school Wednesday, August 26, 2015, declare that posession and/or display of firearms is prohibited. Photo by Mark Reis, The Gazette If Colorado lawmakers ever decide to let educators carry concealed firearms in elementary and secondary schools, Wrany, a teacher in Harrison School District 2, probably will be packing heat.

13:43

repeat offenders and DC homicides [Of Arms and the Law]

From the Washpo:

"Repeat violent offenders, according to Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D), are a chief problem. She makes the point that at least 22 homicide suspects were under supervision pending trial or on probation or parole at the time of the crime, and almost half, or 45 percent, had prior gun-related arrests in the District (compared with 27 percent in 2014).

Not to get all existential, but the problem is much deeper than synthetic drugs, high-capacity gun magazines, turf wars, rejiggering police deployment or keeping an eye on repeat violent offenders.

We have on our hands -- in our neighborhoods, on our streets and maybe living next door -- walking disasters: individuals who believe that their lives matter, but not yours or mine. Neither do our laws and institutions."

Friday, 28 August

22:28

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.

09:49

"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

Wednesday, 26 August

15:01

John Lott on CBS Evening News tonight (Update) [Of Arms and the Law]

John Lott will be appearing on CBS Evening News tonight to discuss gun control issues. The show will be on at 6:30PM EDT, though it can't be predicted when Lott's segment will be on.

UPDATE: CBS delayed the segment for more editing (ahem...) so it will air tonight (Thursday) at 6:30.

Monday, 24 August

20:48

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.” . . .

14:02

My latest non-academic article [Of Arms and the Law]

"Brady's Empty Suits", at America's First Freedom. The title is a pun on a phrase lawyers use -- "empty suit," or just "suit," to describe a person whose clothing is impressive but their contents are not.

Sunday, 23 August

22:41

Terrorist taken down by Americans was no terrorist, attorney says [Of Arms and the Law]

Rather, he was just a homeless guy hoping to stick up train passengers for food money. Exactly how a homeless guy would have acquired an AK-47 and a lot of ammo for it is not explained. Heck, at current ammo prices he could have dined on steak and lobster for what he invested in 7.62x39.

11:24

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.

09:53

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." . . .

01:29

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

22:37

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. . . .

21:17

A quote worthy of being remembered [Of Arms and the Law]

"Give me back my gun!"

Why he was making the demand is beyond all understanding....

Thursday, 20 August

23:26

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. . . .

15:52

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. . . .

15:40

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.

15:14

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! 



10:22

And in the Annals of Useless Devices.... [Of Arms and the Law]

We have a 7.62x39 derringer, and a 5.56 with 6.5" barrel attached to a 9.5" something else. BATF contends it's a suppressor, although apparently it doesn't suppress, and Sig contends it's a muzzle brake, although it looks designed to increase muzzle flip. Perhaps it meets the needs of those who really need to feel the muzzle blast on their feet?

Sunday, 16 August

14:55

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.

Wednesday, 12 August

17:22

Interesting case on evidence under the NFA [Of Arms and the Law]

Text here. A 1982 ruling. At trial, the prosecution got admitted into evidence a certificate from the NFA branch records custodian to the effect that the possessor of the NFA arm had never tried to register it, had never paid the $200 tax, and that the firearm had never been registered. The court rules that the certificate could be used to establish the last, that it had never been registered, but was hearsay at to the first two. The NFA records (the only ones of which the person signing the certificate was custodian) would not reflect whether the transfer had been applied for, and the tax stamp was issued by the IRS, not the BATF.

10:13

It seems predictable.... [Of Arms and the Law]

PA Attorney General Kathleen Kane goes antigun. And gets indicted for perjury, official oppression, obstruction of justice and a few other things. The charges are that, to get back at a critic, she leaked grand jury information, and then lied about it.

Tuesday, 11 August

19:05

Plea in murder of BP Agent Terry, with Fast & Furious gun [Of Arms and the Law]

Another perp involved has taken a plea to 30 years' imprisonment. Another perp also got 30 years, and the guy who bought the guns got under five years.

These are all quite lenient. The gunmen faced the death penalty, and the gun buyer could probably have, too (aiding and abetting the murder makes him guilty of murder). If prosecuted under Arizona law (and they still could be, since the offense broke both State and Federal law), they'd be very likely to get death, and at the very least to get life without parole ("natural life"). I've seen killers get the latter for a single murder and one not committed in the course of a plan for violent criminal acts.

15:13

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.


Monday, 10 August

Sunday, 09 August

23:09

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.

16:45

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

01:05

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

panama
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

17:44

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.

13:20

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

19:44

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.


16:15

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.

Wednesday, 05 August

16:20

"China to Embed Internet Police in Tech Firms," So these are the guys Obama wants to give control of the internet to? [John Lott's Website]

It is good to know that these internet police will be able to stop the "spreading of rumors."  It obviously wound never be abused by the Chinese to stop people from saying true things about the government, right?  From the WSJ:
China’s government plans to embed cybersecurity police units at major Internet companies and websites to help prevent crimes such as fraud and “spreading of rumors,” state-run Xinhua News Agency reported Tuesday. 
It is an unusually hands-on approach by Beijing, which typically sets censorship standards and puts the onus on companies to comply. China’s Internet regulator has previously favored tactics such as threatening to shut down services that didn’t meet censorship requirements. . . . 

Tuesday, 04 August

11:13

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......

Sunday, 02 August

00:04

Mother Jones joins the list of left wingers trying to discredit me and the Crime Prevention Research Center [John Lott's Website]

The doctored picture above is from Mother Jones' article on me
-- not quite sure what they have done to my neck.

For several years, Mother Jones, a leftist magazine funded by people such as George Soros, and I have been having a running feud.  They are apparently willing to do anything to push for more gun control.  Even other academics, who are liberal gun control advocates, such as James Alan Fox have also taken them to task, for their misleading use of data.  Unable to win the battle of facts, Mother Jones this week published a report trying to discredit my research.

Julia Lurie, the reporter Mother Jones assigned to do a story on the Crime Prevention Research Center, somehow managed to ask me about 50 detailed questions and still write on many issues that she had not asked me about, and when she did ask about things she ignored my responses (available here).  Her piece was filled with simple factual errors. Even a brief look in my book More Guns, Less Crime or in my original research paper with David Mustard would have prevented them.

Lurie somehow couldn’t managed to talk to researchers who have found results similar to mine, and she couldn’t even mention what most of the per reviewed studies have found.

Mother Jones has gone after others, such as Bill O’Reilly, and launched a personal attack.  In my case, they claim that the work produced by the Crime Prevention Research Center isn’t “academic quality” and quotes Professor Gary Kleck as saying that credible criminologist don’t believe that “with more guns there are less crimes” and that my research "was garbage in and garbage out.”  That the “National Research Council . . . concluded that the existing research, including Lott's, provided "no credible evidence" that right-to-carry laws had any effect on violent crime.”  The attacks are misleading and out of context.

Take Lurie's points in order.

1) "The National Research Council, a branch of the National Academy of Sciences, assembled a panel to look into the impact of concealed-carry laws; 15 of 16 panel members concluded that the existing research, including Lott's, provided "no credible evidence" that right-to-carry laws had any effect on violent crime.”

The National Research Council report actually concluded as follows: “The committee concludes that with the current evidence it is not possible to determine that there is a causal link between the passage of right-to-carry laws and crime rates.” The majority of the panel advocated that more money be available to academics to fund additional research.  Lurie somehow manages not to mention that despite evaluating every gun law that has been studied, the Council found no evidence supporting that any law had any impact.  

Right-to-carry laws were actually the only type of law where there was dissent. James Q. Wilson, who at the time was possibly the “most influential criminal justice scholar of the 20th century,” concluded: “I find that the evidence presented by Lott and his supporters suggests that [right-to-carry] laws do in fact help drive down the murder rate.” 

2) Where my results biased because the crack cocaine epidemic in the late 1980s and early 1990s?

My research from the very first work with David Mustard dealt with the crack cocaine issue.  As Florenz Plassmann and John Whitley (Stanford Law Review, 2003) summarize the research: 
"One of Ayres and Donohue’s greatest concerns is the apparent failure of previous research to account for the differential geographic impact of cocaine on crime. Lott’s book (and the Lott and Mustard paper) reported that including price data for cocaine did not alter the results. Using yearly county-level pricing data (as opposed to short-run changes in prices) has the advantage of picking up cost but not demand differences between counties, thus measuring the differences in availability across counties. Research conducted by Steve Bronars and John Lott examined the crime rates for neighboring counties . . . on either side of a state border. When the counties adopting the law experienced a drop in violent crime, neighboring counties directly on the other side of the border without right-to-carry laws experienced an increase. . . . Ayres and Donohue argue that different parts of the country may have experienced differential impacts from the crack epidemic. Yet, if there are two urban counties next to each other, how can the crack cocaine hypothesis explain why one urban county faces a crime increase from drugs, when the neighbor- ing urban county is experiencing a drop? Such isolation would be particularly surprising as criminals can easily move between these counties. . . . Even though Lott gave Ayres and Donohue the cocaine price data from 1977 to 1992, they have never reported using it.”
My third edition of More Guns, Less Crime in 2010 also used new data from Fryer et al that was published in Economic Inquiry that attempted to measure the impact of crack cocaine from 1980 to 2000.

The claim that the research supporting right-to-carry laws somehow ignores the potential impact on crime is simply wrong.  Even worse, critics, such as Ayres and Donohue, who claim that the results could be explained away by the impact of crack cocaine have never provided any estimates that include this factor to show that is true.

Would it have been that difficult for Ms. Lurie to ask about this point if she were going to write about it?  Alternatively, Lurie could have just looked in the appendix in More Guns, Less crime to see all the discussions of crack cocaine.

3) "When [Ayres and Donohue] extended their survey by five years, they found that more guns were linked to more crime, with right-to-carry states showing an eight percent increase in aggravated assault."

This is a simple counting error.  Ayres and Donohue made the false claim, and Lurie never bothered to confirm it.  The Second edition of More Guns, Less Crime, which was published in 2000, used data from 1977 to 1996.  Ayres and Donohue’s 2003 paper used data from 1977 to 1997.  I provided Ayres and Donohue my data from 1977 to 1996 and they added one year to the data.  Adding that one year to the 20 that were already being examined didn’t make a difference.  They obtained somewhat different results because they used a different specification and misinterpreted their results.

Again, either a fast look at either the second or third editions of More Guns, Less Crime would have let her realize that this claim was incorrect.

4) Claim by Gary Kleck that I hadn’t “accounted for missing data,” and that “It was garbage in and garbage out,”  The problem is simple: in some counties not have all the cities in those counties reporting crime rate data every year.  This causes some randomness in the number of crimes reported for those counties.  The problem used to be particularly prevalent in low-population counties, but it has improved considerably over time.

Take Georgia, one state that has been singled out by some of those concerned about this problem over the period from 1980 to 1993, after which the problem had largely disappeared.  Of the state’s 159 counties over this period, the 16 least populated ones with a total of about 1 percent of Georgia’s population were missing about 35% of the police departments reporting.  By contrast, the 127 most populated counties with 97.2% of the total population averaged an under-reporting rate of 5.6%.  Since all the regressions that I had reported in my work weighted the county data by their populations, the counties with the largest problems had little impact on the results.

All data contains some errors.  The question isn’t whether data has errors, it is whether those errors are random or whether they systematically bias the results.  Starting with my first paper with David Mustard, I have dealt with this issue in many different ways.  

— The original paper with Mustard first looked at all counties and then just counties with more than 50,000 people and then those with more than 100,000 people.  If the small population counties were creating a bias in favor of right-to-carry laws, removing those small counties and looking at larger counties should eliminate that result.  But that didn’t happen. The results were very similar when just the more populous counties were used.  

— The Second edition of More Guns, Less Crime studied city, county and state level data.  Even if that particular error existed for county level data, it did not exist for city or state level data.  And, again, the results were similar.

— A 2002 paper with John Whitley explicitly examines errors in the county level data and finds no evidence of any systematic biases.  This was published in 2003 in the Journal of Quantitative Criminology.

All this information was provided to Lurie.

5) “Kleck, who conducted a controversial, yet often-cited survey on defensive gun use, observes, "Do I know anybody who specifically believes with more guns there are less crimes and they're a credible criminologist? No.” 

So does Gary Kleck acknowledge that James Q. Wilson was a credible criminologist?  A survey just completed by Gary Mauser of people who published on firearm issues in refereed criminology journals from 2000 to 2014 found that 31% thought that right-to-carry laws lowered murder rates, 15% said that it increased murder rates, 46% said that the laws had no effect, and 5.1% said that they didn’t know.  While the largest category of criminologists agree with Gary Kleck that right-to-carry laws have no impact on crime rates, the second largest group of researchers do believe the more guns, less crime hypothesis.

6) What I actually claimed about the views of economists and criminologists was that the vast majority of published peer-reviewed papers looking at the impact that right-to-carry laws had on US crime rate found that they reduced violent crime rates and the rest of the papers claimed that there was no effect for murder, rape and robbery (see also here).

7) “The organization . . . proceeds and publishes ‘academic quality’ reports that have yet to be published in peer-reviewed journals.”  

It helps provide some perspective that I have published over a 100 peer-reviewed academic journal articles.  The CPRC was only started in October 2013, and it takes time to produce research and then even more time to go the peer-review process.  Yet, despite that, we supported research published last year titled “The Impact of Right-to-carry laws on Crime: an Exercise in Replication” by Carlisle Moody, Thomas Marvell, Paul Zimmerman, and Fasil Alemante that was published in the Review of Economics and Finance in 2014.    The CPRC co-authored a paper that was published in Public Choice, which is also a peer-reviewed journal.  In addition, as Lurie knows, she was also informed that one paper at a journal had been revised and resubmitted to the journal.  In addition, another paper showing errors in a recent FBI report on active shooters was published in the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences Today.

Not surprisingly, Mother Jones fails to note the CPRC's prestigious academic advisory board, with people at the top of their fields from the University of Chicago, Harvard, and the Wharton Business School. 

8) “one of the small number of very pro-gun researchers like Gary Kleck or John Lott”

This statement makes two mistakes.  First, most economists who have published research on firearms in peer-reviewed journals believe that there is a net safety benefit from people carrying guns.  For example, worldwide 83% of economists who have published on this topic believe that guns are more likely to be used in self-defense than to be used in crime and 74% believe that concealed handgun laws lower the murder rate.  As noted earlier, those who publish in criminology journals are more divided on the issue, and they are thus do not take monolithic position that the article describes for researchers.

It is strange that Kleck is labeled “pro-gun” in the same article where he is quoted as saying: “Do I know anybody who specifically believes with more guns there are less crimes and they're a credible criminologist? No.” Kleck believes guns have no net effect on crime rates, and thus he doesn’t thinks that it matters whether guns are banned or licensed or regulated in some other way.  Gary Kleck and I clearly have very different views on guns, and it is surprising that the articles lumps the two of us together.

8) “Lott claimed that it was based on a data from a survey he had conducted—but that the data had been lost in a computer crash.”

The hard disk crash was widely documented by people at the time it occurred on July 3, 1997.  The crash destroyed data for all the papers that I was working on up to that point.  A number of co-authors who I was working with also lost data for papers that we had been working on (Larry Kenny at Florida State, Richard Manning who was then at BYU, Jonathan Karpoff at the University of Washington, David Mustard at University of Georgia) and others who had contemporaneous knowledge of the crash (including Geoffrey Huck, an editor at the University of Chicago Press; Dan Kahan at Yale; and John Whitley who was at the time at the University of Adelaide in Australia).

9) Mother Jones completely manage to mangle the timeline and seems unable to accurately report the numbers for a follow-up survey that confirmed the previous results in 2002, before controversy erupted about the first survey.  The point of the 2002 survey was to see if there had been any changes in the rate of defensive gun uses since the 1997 survey, but when the earlier results were questioned, it also served as a way of replicating them.  The survey was designed differently than other surveys, such asking people only about recent crimes over the previous year rather than events that had occurred over the last 10 years or longer.  As to the timeline, the survey had started being being prepared by one of my research assistant James Knowles in June 2002, well before the controversy over the first survey occurred the end of 2002 and the beginning of 2003.

10) “Rosh and Lott shared an internet address.”  This is simply false.  We had a dynamic IP address.  Julian Sanchez had put a post up on his blog site noting that “maryrosh” had an IP address in Southeastern Pennsylvania, but he asked for help with anyone who might know who the person was.  When I saw Sanchez’s post, I emailed him and told him that I had used our kids’ email address in putting posts up on an internet chatroom.  I had original started using my own email address in postings in the chatroom, but, unfortunately, some people tried to continue the discussions in unpleasant ways in person.  Since the vast majority of people using the chatroom were using pseudonyms, it seemed appropriate to follow that example.

11) The Mother Jones story original made fun of the fact that Milwaukee Sheriff David Clarke is on the Crime Prevention Research Center's Board of Directors (their story has now been updated, but they have changed it without acknowledging the original post that they had up).  We are very proud of our relationship with David Clarke and believe that he brings in an important real work perspective to the Center.  They also fail to note that Professor Edgar Browning, who is also on our board, has been one of the top public finance economists in the world.


Wednesday, 29 July

13:22

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

18:36

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

16:26

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.

05:31

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.

05:30

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.

05:29

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.

05:28

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.

04:49

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

12:43

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.

10:35

Biased media: Compare how ABC’s George Stephanopoulos badgered Peter Schweizer with how he interviewed the preside [John Lott's Website]



Put aside that Stephanopoulos didn't acknowledge his donations to the Clinton Foundation when he interviewed Schweizer about the foundation.  Just compare the tone and badgering of Schweizer with how he was differential to Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards.

Thursday, 23 July

16:58

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.

06:39

Crime Prevention Research Center has two of the top 5 research papers on "Security and Safety" at the Social Science Research Network [John Lott's Website]

Click on screen shot to enlarge

I hope that people find these two papers of interest and download them to take a look (available here).  The more our research papers move up in rank, the more that it gets other academics to read them and interested in those research topics.  

Wednesday, 22 July

20:31

Newly released IRS emails show that Obama adm targeted people who donated to conservative groups [John Lott's Website]

Well, now we can see why the Obama administration has fought so hard against releasing the IRS emails.  The Daily Caller correctly describes this as a "bombshell" admission.
. . . The emails, obtained by Judicial Watch, show that Obama’s IRS conspired to revive the “gift tax” — a tax on 501(c)(4) donors that had not been enforced since 1982 following a Supreme Court ruling that effectively invalidated it. Emails between IRS officials show that the agency referred to Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS while discussing how to enforce their new gift tax on donors.  
On April 20, 2011, IRS lawyer Lorraine Garder emailed a donor list for a nonprofit group to James Hogan, a manager in the IRS’ Chief Counsel’s office. Judicial Watch noted that the disclosure of the redacted group’s donor list occurred during the period in which officials were discussing Crossroads GPS. 
“Does Bob have information about any of the donors [to the group in question]?” Gardner wrote in an email to IRS Estate Gift and Policy Manager Lisa Piehl. 
Weeks later, on May 13, 2011 an IRS official whose name was redacted in the documents released to Judicial Watch emailed Gardner and made one of the most stunning admissions of the existence of the IRS conservative targeting program.
“The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is a 501(c)(6) organization and may find itself under high scrutiny,” the official wrote. “One can only hope.” . . .

11:54

Newest in the Philadelphia Inquirer: "For more Americans, owning a gun = safety" [John Lott's Website]

My newest piece in today's Philadelphia Inquirer starts this way:
Americans are increasingly convinced that owning a gun makes them safer.
A new Rasmussen poll found that an overwhelming margin of Americans (68 to 22 percent) “feel safer in a neighborhood where guns are allowed.” And a series of polls by Gallup, Pew Research Center, and ABC News/Washington Post show similar results. 
But it isn’t just what people say. They are clearly putting increased stock in self-defense. Since 2007, the number of concealed handgun permits has soared from 4.6 million to 12.8 million. A new study by the Crime Prevention Research Center finds that a record 1.7 million permits have been issued in just the past year. This is a 15.4 percent increase. 
While 5.2 percent of adults nationwide have a permit, in Pennsylvania it is almost 11 percent, ranking it fourth in the country. More than 1 million Pennsylvanians have permits.
In five states, more than 10 percent of adults now have concealed-carry permits. In some counties around the United States, including some in Pennsylvania, more than one in five adults is licensed to carry. In much of the country, someone among theatergoers or restaurant customers is likely to be legally carrying a permitted concealed handgun. 
But even these numbers don’t do full justice to the change that has taken place. . . .
The rest of the piece is available here.

Tuesday, 21 July

18:46

Evidence that Trump isn't a "straight shooter," that he tailors his outspokenness to fit his audience [John Lott's Website]

Donald Trump claims to be the true conservative in the Republican primary.

Trump in 2000: "The Republicans, especially those in Congress, are captives of their right wing."


-- Since 1990, for federal offices Trump has given $541,650 to Democrats and  $429,450 to Republicans.  it looks to be at least as lopsided for state offices.


-- A 2011 article in the Washington Post has this headline: "Trump’s donation history shows Democratic favoritism"

The Democratic recipients of Trump’s donations make up what looks like a Republican enemies list, including former senator Hillary Rodham Clinton(N.Y.), Sen. John F. Kerry (Mass.), Rep. Charles B. Rangel (N.Y.), Sen. Charles E. Schumer (N.Y.) and the late liberal lion Edward M. Kennedy(Mass.).  
The biggest recipient of all has been the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee of New York, which has taken in more than $125,000 from Trump and his companies. Overall, Trump has given nearly $600,000 to New York state campaigns, with more than two-thirds going to Democrats. . . .
Donations to Ted Kennedy?  John Kerry?  All those donations would seem hard for a true "conservative" to explain.

-- Trump has given between $100,000 and $250,000 to the Clinton Foundation.

-- Referring to his views on Obama in 2008, Trump said "I was his biggest cheerleader."  In 2009, Trump said that he would "hire" Obama.  That "he’s handled the tremendous mess he walked into very well.


When Trump was toying with running as an independent in 2000, he attacked conservatives and liberals.  He supports Democrats when it is in his interest and Republicans at other times.


He lauds Obama early during his presidency, but then when Trump was toying with running as a Republican in 2011 he goes after the nutty birther claims

Other notes on Trump are available here.



13:57

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.

12:42

Newest piece at Fox News: "Older people need guns, too" [John Lott's Website]


72 year old woman uses gun to stop attackers
John Lott's newest piece at Fox News starts this way:
Have you ever thought of letting someone else manage your finances?  If President Obama has his way, Social Security recipients who have trouble managing their finances will be banned from buying a gun. 
If Social Security were to start classifying these people as “mentally defective,” some 4.2 million Social Security recipients could be affected – about 10 percent of all people 65 and older. 
But it is a real reach to say those who can’t manage their finances are a physical danger to themselves or others.  What is next?  Saying that people who can’t drive well or fail a math test should lose their right to self-defense? 
What about other rights?  If Obama finds people “mentally defective,” should they lose their right to vote?  Will they lose the right to make other decisions?
Having a gun is by far the safest way for people to protect themselves from criminals.  What is ignored is that older people, as well as women, who both tend to be weaker physically, benefit the most from owning a gun.   When a young man attacks an elderly person, the strength difference is enormous.  A gun is the only means an elderly person can realistically put up a defense. 
Everyday one can find news stories of elderly people defending themselves with guns.  On Sunday afternoon, a 70-year-old homeowner in Washington state rescued his roommate who was being attacked by an intruder.  Two days before that a retired veteran used his permitted concealed handgun to stop an armed robbery and protect others at a gas station in Georgia. 
Americans 65 and over make up over 14 percent of the US population, yet they seldom go out and kill people, accounting for only 3 percent of murders where the age of the murder is known and it is probably far less than that as unsolved murders disproportionately tend to involve young gangs. . . .
The rest of the piece is available here.

Sunday, 19 July

21:33

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

16:11

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

12:19

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

22:38

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

13:57

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

20:53

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

12:49

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

18:44

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

22:59

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

20:13

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

18:57

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.

Monday, 22 June

16:41

IRS, State Dept. the most transparent in history? [The Liberty Sphere]

In 2008 prior to being elected President, Barack Obama pledged that his administration would be the most transparent in history. It turns out that the question is not whether or not it has lived up to Obama's pledge. Everyone knows it has not. The real question is how much closer to transparency the administration has become, if at all. If a new assessment provided by the Las Vegas Review-Journal today is any indication, the answer to that question is the only thing that is transparent.

Continue reading here.

Sunday, 21 June

19:08

Enemies of liberty tip their hand [The Liberty Sphere]

Conservatives, libertarians, and gun rights activists have long suspected that many elected representatives, political consultants, and even some religious leaders secretly push a nefarious agenda that directly attacks the liberties and rights of ordinary citizens. Today at least two of these persons tipped their hand, making comments that raised the eyebrows of even the most seasoned journalists.

Continue reading here.

Saturday, 20 June

17:53

Hillary/State Dept. under gun of federal court scrutiny [The Liberty Sphere]

Late last evening, Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch (JW), announced yet another victory in federal court for the government watchdog group. Judge Emmet Sullivan of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia announced that he is reopening the case concerning top Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin.

Continue reading here.

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