Saturday, September 30, 2006

Range Report No. 1: Kimber Stainless Target II, 10mm

Actually, this is two range reports in one, and more of a preliminary report -- the REAL ones will come when I can get my hands on some REAL 10mm loads. ;-) I've put two brands of ammo through her so far, two different weights and loads:
50 rds. of CCI Blazer -- 200 gr. @ 1,050 fps
100 rds. of Federal American Eagle -- 180 gr. @ 1,060 fps

So far, I am very impressed. 150 rounds through the pistol, no jams, failures to feed or duds. The slide did lock back prematurely just once about a quarter of the way through the Federal, but I think that was due to limp-wristing. I ran her through my normal range regimen -- half at the 3-yard line, half at the 7-yard. Would have tried my luck at the 15-yard mark were I not mainly concerned with how smoothly she'd run through what I fed her, because this gun is arguably more accurate than I am. I know that might not be saying much, considering most guns no matter the brand are more accurate than the people who are shooting them, but still, it's just amazing. Ragged holes, anyone? I found out that no matter which of my guns I am shooting, though, I tend to shoot low and to the right. Next trip I am going to start working on that...I've been shooting the Springfield GI on most of my recent range trips and the same thing's been happening. I was thinking it was the gun, but apparently it isn't. The recoil of the Kimber 10mm with those light loads seems to be similar to that of the .45, so it didn't take long to get used to, but I know what's really gonna tell the tale is those real 10mm loads. When the founds come, so will they -- and it won't be too long. I look forward to it...

Sunday, September 24, 2006

The Mendacity of Mike Magnum

I'm sure most folks who happen upon my humble place on the Web know about the site As of yet I haven't said much about its content, well, basically because my visits to the site don't last much longer than half a heartbeat. But I had to comment on this, via Carnaby, who obviously has a much stronger stomach than I do when it comes to tripe like this, as he actually signed up for their e-mail list!...

Do you know that the NRA lobbies for and backs court cases to allow domestic violence offenders to own guns? And that they also think men who are under restraining orders should be able to pack heat?
And members of the so-called "gun rights" movement also defend the "right" of sex offenders to carry around guns!

I won't repeat Carnaby's words here (just go read what he had to say, it's very good), but what I'd like to say is, what a way to twist the argument. Most of us "gun guys" (and girls, too), as those cretins like to call us, would be arguing that people who can't be trusted with firearms shouldn't be trusted to walk among free other words, that they should still be in jail, or better yet in the cases of the domestic offenders, six feet under at the hands of one of their intended victims. Were one to twist Mike Magnum's argument as he twists ours, one could say that he and his ilk think it's just peachy keen to let child-rapists and wife-beaters walk free in society. We don't, of course...but sometimes I ponder if there might indeed be some advantages to playing smash-mouth football down in the mud with these cretins.
The really sick irony, though, is if people like this Mike Magnum jerk had their way, the victims of domestic abuse would be denied their right to use deadly force in self-defense, as we see in this little snippet from the e-mail, ranting about so-called "junk guns":
...we'd love to see a firearm that meets our "safety standards"-- that doesn't exist...

So there you have it. They'd just as soon have that 115-pound woman go up against her 220-pound abuser with nothing more than her bare hands and whatever she might be holding in it, a knife, ink pen, or what have you. These people are foul, foul beings, a boil on the ass of humanity, and I've said it before and I'll say it again: Much innocent blood will be on the hands of these bastards and their ilk if, God forbid, it ever comes down to disarmament of the American people.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

So I Got A Call Yesterday...

...from one of our friendly local gun stores, Shooters Supply in Beaumont. About five weeks ago I ordered a Kimber Stainless Target II in 10mm, and as the weeks wore on, I started getting more and more, ah, impatient. Well, I got outta the shower yesterday right before I hit the door for school, and this message was on my voice mail...
"Yeah, Pistolero, this is Friendly Gun Store Guy at Shooters Supply, that Kimber Stainless Target II in 10mm is in whenever you want to come pick it up..."
I seriously thought about skipping class to go and get it, but considering the gun is my graduation present to myself, I thought it might have been bad luck, so, I went to class and afterwards on to Shooters. Filled out the 4473, wrote the check for the gun and two extra mags, had them put on the Hogue finger wraparounds I ordered for her, and brought her home, cleaned and oiled her. And here she is:

I was going to pick up some ammo for her too, but as it happens, they were completely out of 10mm...they had a few boxes of 180-grain Remington UMC last time I was in there, but I asked them to order some for me. Not sure when it'll be in, a few days, I suppose, but when it gets here, you know what that means! Range report to come...

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Musical Musings On a Saturday Night: New Songs from Not-Quite A-list Stars

So there are three songs from certain country artists that have been getting a pretty decent amount of play on the radio here, and all three songs are from artists who had a radio hit or two, disappeared for a while and made something of a comeback with these songs. I thought that was pretty odd, though not necessarily in a bad way...a couple of the songs are quite good. Anyway, here they are:

1. Rodney Atkins, "If You're Going Through Hell." What to say about Mr. Atkins? I'm sure he's a nice guy, and I don't think he's just a no-talent hack, don't get me wrong, but from where I sit he's not too much more than a Tim McGraw soundalike, albeit with a bit more of a traditional sound but not enough of that to make much of a difference. Tim's nothing to write home about as a singer, and one of him is quite enough. As for the might as well be called "If You're Going Through Hell (And Other Cliches)." Doesn't do a thing for me. I'd rather have the time that goes to having this song played on the radio go to the two songs I am about to mention.

2. Steve Holy, "Brand New Girlfriend." Really fun stuff here, I didn't know Steve Holy had this in him. I grinned like the cat that ate the canary when I heard the line, "spent the whole day lyin' on the beach, wearin' nothin' but a smile..." He's got a pretty good voice, too. I'm interested to see what else he has up his sleeve.

3. Blaine Larsen, "I Don't Know What She Said." To hear this guy sing, you'd never guess he was only 20 years old. When I first heard this song, for about the first minute, I seriously thought it was George Strait because of that incredible voice. And what a clever tune! "I don't know what she said, but I sure like the way that she said it..." I would really like to see Mr. Larsen's career take off. I loved his first single, "How Do You Get That Lonely," from his very first album...why I didn't go out and get that cd, I don't know, but now I am going to have to fix that when I get this second one, too. If those two songs are any indication of Larsen's repertoire as a whole, no doubt both those cds will be worth every penny.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Running the Numbers; or, The Truth Isn't Always Politically Correct (Correction!)

Correction below, thanks GunGeek...

I'm surprised I haven't heard this commercial yet...
Via SayUncle, we have this, once again from the Bayou City (emphasis mine -- ed.):

His name is Jim Pruett and he formed half of one of the most outrageous duos in Houston radio history -- Stevens and Pruett -- back in the 1990's. He's raising controversy on the airwaves again -- this time as a gun shop owner. He says Houstonians must arm themselves, because of the rise in crime. But, as you would imagine, some Katrina evacuees say they are being publicly called out.

"The sale of handguns are up 50 percent in this store," Pruett told Eyewitness News.

Gun shop owner Jim Pruett says Houston's growing crime problem has brought a boom in business. It's a trend Pruett ties in part to the arrival of Katrina evacuees. This is his latest radio advertisement:

"When the Katricans themselves as saying the crime rate will go up if they don't have more free rent, then it's time to get your concealed weapons license."

We listened to ad in the home of Debra Campbell. She's a Katrina survivor.

She said, "I think that commercial is very inhumane. It is targeting us now. It allows Houstonians or whatever criminals to gun us down for no reason."

Well, um, no, the commercial doesn't do that...the law still says that if you get killed for no reason, your killer will still be prosecuted. As for the criminals, well, they're gonna break those laws anyway, Ms. Campbell, that's why they're called, um, criminals. While I can understand why some of the Katrina evacuees in Houston might feel slighted by the attitude of good people like Jim Pruett, the facts speak for themselves. I was listening to Walton and Johnson yesterday morning, and they mentioned something that I had never thought about.
The population of Houston proper stands at about 2 million, with metro Houston at about 3 million.
150,000 people came to Houston last fall in the aftermath of Katrina.
Just for grins, let's say that 10,000 of those, at most, have ended up with blood on their hands.
10,000 added to 2 million works out to a 0.5 percent increase in population.

And via Houston Strategies, we have this(emphasis mine -- ed.):

Houston took in 150,000 evacuees — the most of any U.S. city — after Katrina struck on Aug. 29. Houston police believe the evacuees are partly responsible for a nearly 17.5 percent increase in homicides so far this year over the same period in 2005.

About 21 percent of Houston's 232 homicides through July 25 involved an evacuee as either a suspect or a victim, according to police, who attribute much of the bloodshed to fighting among rival New Orleans gang members.

A 0.5 percent increase in the population (NOT the criminal population, we're just assuming that 10,000 out of the 150,000 are violent criminals, which I would think is really pushing it, but who knows? -- ed., 5:36 PM),and a 17.5 percent increase in murders. (And even taking the entire 150,000 evacuees, that's still only a population increase of 7.5 percent. -- ed., 5:41 PM) So, it would seem that a disproportionate increase in crime has indeed come with the exodus of New Orleanians to Houston, and there's not much getting around that. I saw Spike Lee's "When The Levees Broke" a few weeks ago, and I recall who I think was some sort of activist scoffing at the notion that Katrina evacuees caused such a spike in Houston's crime rate, "as if Houston was all sunshine and rainbows before Katrina," or some tripe like that. No, Houston was certainly not all sunshine and rainbows before Katrina, but I still found it rather disgusting that anyone would downplay the evacuees' role in the increased Houston crime rate to such an extent. I am almost surprised we haven't seen more of the "blame the guns" rhetoric, especially considering that New Orleans Mayor Raycist Nagin was, if I remember correctly, one of the first big-city mayors to file suit against the gun industry.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Houston Chronicle Swallows Brady Kool-Aid

Welcome, blogHOUSTON readers! Main page may be found here, pull up a seat!
From an editorial in this morning's edition:

...more crimes are being committed with illicit guns. Keeping those guns from illegal re-sellers, straw buyers or convicted felons must be a national priority. Two rational steps include requiring gun-show dealers to conduct buyer background checks and limiting the number of gun purchases to one per person per month.

Neither of these measures should cause pain to law-abiding gun users. But they could spare communities, including Houston, from much unnecessary fear.

Yes, Chron editorialists, of course.
Let's not even consider the possibility that if convicted felons can't be trusted with guns, maybe they should still be kept out of society altogether.
Let's not even mention the fact that a straw purchase is already a federal felony, punishable by ten years in prison.
Let's just gloss over the fact that there is NO SUCH THING as a "gun show loophole."
Let's just skim right over the fact that dealers selling their wares at gun shows have to require that potential purchasers fill out the ATF Form 4473 before the purchase can go forward -- that is, the potential purchasers must undergo a background check -- as they would be required to do at their normal places of business.
In other words, let's just keep pushing the same old blatant lies and failed "solutions" that we've been pushing for God knows how long. Let's not consider the possibility that, for example, the War On (Some) Drugs has filled our prisons and left little to no room for people that really deserve to be there. Let's not even consider the cultural corruption that has led to more crime being committed with guns.
Judas Priest, is there no one in America's newsrooms who will call this out for what it is...NOT "rational steps," but complete and utter lunacy? I know the Houston Chronicle could by no means be considered a middle-of-the-road media outlet, but considering that it's the dominant daily newspaper in the largest city in one of the most pro-gun states in the land, I really expected better than this. Maybe some of that "elegance, wit and insight" that is supposedly found on "editorial pages in their ideal state."

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

A Few Words on the Military Sidearm

Via Michael Bane, we have this:

This notification is to inform Industry the Combat Pistol requirement is postponed indefinately. USSOCOM will no longer issue a Request for Proposal.

So it looks like for the time being, the military is going to keep using the sidearm they've been using since 1985, the 9mm Beretta M9. Far be it from me to weigh in on the 9mm vs. .45ACP debate, but Mr. Bane had this to say, and I think it's safe to say he knows much more than I do about the merits of what our troops have to work with:

...the bureaucratic collapse of the SOCOM RFP is going to cost AMERICAN LIVES! Here's how...yeah, the operators get what they want...but there's a lot of guys out there who aren't the operators...and they're still doing the job with what they have on hand. They're the men and women driving the Humvees and the trucks, working support roles, ect. THEY are the ones who wanted a better handgun, because they're the one's who most often need what a handgun does — one-handed firepower up close and personal.

When your butt is sandwiched into a Humvee, the SHTF and one hand has to remain on the wheel so you can get the operators out, what do you want in your free hand? I submit that the answer to that question is NOT a flawed 9mm loaded with ball.

You want a .45 that goes BANG every single time, because that's what's going to get you and the people in that Humvee or truck HOME!

And now those poor bastards are not going to get that .45 because some behind-the-line clerks couldn't decide on whether the guns should be optionally available in pink with racing stripes or some other lame requirement.

It's a damn crime, and, as usual, the grunts in the field are going to pay the price!

I think it would be interesting to see just how many American lives have been lost because they had the 9mm instead of the .45. Personally, I wouldn't want to get hit with either of them, but the fact is that the .45, in tandem with the Model 1911 pistol, has a pretty illustrious track record as the government-issued sidearm-ammunition combination of American troops over the years, does it not? WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam...say what you will, but John Moses Browning must have been doing something right. This is all just my unenlightened opinion, of course. And so is this: The change to the 9mm was a fixing of something that was not broken, a catering to, literally, the lowest common denominator -- or, if you will, the smallest. Instead of our NATO allies making the change to the bigger bullet, we made the change to the smaller one. Perhaps that was logistically the easier thing to do, but was it really the smartest? As Tim Chandler said,
Certainly a 9mm weapon that can hold 15 rounds in the magazine and one in the chamber has greater CAPACITY than the 7+1 round .45 caliber pistol, but whether or not that translates into greater "firepower" is a matter of debate. (Is it better to hit someone with 3 puny rounds, or 1 round that knocks them out of the fight?)

It's a point worth considering, notwithstanding the arguments for the M9 -- what some might call a safer manual of arms: DA/SA/safety as opposed to single-action, cocked-and-locked, lighter recoil of 9mm for smaller shooters, etc. -- and this leads to another couple of points.
There are those who say that the police and the military are the only ones professional enough to handle guns. How interesting it is that others will argue these same professionals would be better off not having to master the manual of arms of something like a 1911. I shot single/double-action pistols for a good year before I picked up a 1911, and it took me maybe a day to figure the 1911 out. Of course, I fanatically followed the Four Rules, but one should be doing that no matter the manual of arms of their weapon.
Many say the 1911 is not the best gun for a beginning shooter, and perhaps it isn't, as a double-action pistol with the longer trigger pull allows for slightly more room for error, and no doubt a beginner would find the cocked-and-locked position more than a little intimidating. As with all matters involving firearms, though, the more familiar people get with their weapons, the intimidation factor arguably does go down. So there's, to my mind, one more argument for the civilian possession of arms -- if they're familiar with them going in, it would make for easier training, at least a little. Better for people to know as much going in as they can, I think...

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Yet More Journalistic Malpractice

More journalistic asshattery here, via THR.
First up, the Jim Borgman cartoon. What we have here is yet more lack of a real cost-benefit analysis. "This bullet killed a cop/convenience store clerk/andonandon?" What about the bullet that killed the home invader that broke down the door at 3 in the morning? Or the bullet that killed the rapist in the alley, or the abusive boyfriend while he was in the midst of violating his girlfriend? I haven't really been given any reason to believe that brain-dead big-city dead-tree cartoonists and their circle-jerking ilk are ever going to see the benefits of deadly force in the hands of private citizens, but I still find it, and will always find it, absolutely infuriating that these cretins will sit there on their moral high horses, in their air-conditioned offices and spew this filth. That is their First Amendment right, of course, but it would be great if they were not infected with such extreme cases of cranial-rectal inversion. And it would be even better if, instead of more or less advocating that Americans be disarmed by armed men, they would actually show a shred of intellectual integrity and demand that Americans be disarmed by gun bigots like himself with nothing but their bare hands. Of course, that would also take spine, which the gun bigots have shown to be sorely lacking.
Next up, we have more idiocy from -- where else? -- the New York Times. We have seen the Gray Lady prostituting herself out to a few anti-American causes before, and this time, it's a favorite client of hers, the gun-haters (emphasis mine -- ed.):

I asked one of the state coalitions opposed to these laws (concealed-carry laws -- ed.) whether it would attack them in the Legislature this year. The answer was no. It is too busy trying to defeat a "shoot first" bill, which would give gun owners the right to fire away instead of trying to avoid a confrontation. The way I see it, Minnesota is only one step away from requiring every citizen to carry a gun and use it when provoked....

Like my family in Iowa, Minnesotans were gun owners because they hunted pheasants and rabbits and deer. But then I'm thinking of a time when the leadership of the National Rifle Association resembled a band of merry sportsmen and not the paranoid cabal it is today.... me, owning guns and knowing how to use them properly was part of a civic bargain. I would leave the police work to the police, and they would leave the squirrel hunting to me. The notion that 38 states would have "concealed carry" laws in 2006 would have seemed insane, a regression to a more primitive idea of who we are....

the law strips the public of its right to occupy public spaces without the threat of being shot....

Where to start on this one? This is just more of the same 'give people a gun and they'll shoot willy-nilly," "the right to keep and bear arms is about squirrel hunting," you know the drill. Same shit, different day, long on flash, but painfully short on boom -- or, as the title character in Shakespeare's Macbeth said of life, "a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."
It was very interesting, though, to see the reader comments on the Borgman cartoon. They more or less ripped him to shreds. I am not sure how many of those are local readers of Borgman's paper, the Cincinnati Enquirer, but I don't think it's that farfetched to say that it was to some extent an illustration of the ideological disconnect between certain elements of the mainstream media and its audience on the issue of gun control. It would be fun to see if that same disconnect existed among the NYT audience; unfortunately, though, the author of that hysterical screed apparently doesn't have a blog, and the International Herald-Tribune (in which the piece appeared) doesn't have any kind of feedback forum for the article. Perhaps it's just as well. He probably wouldn't be able to handle the truth.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

More Thoughts on Muslim Assimilation in America

If you'll recall, a few posts back I was ruminating on (among other things) immigrants to this country and how they were not assimilating to the degree that they should, and pointing out how the lack of assimilation among Muslims in other countries has led to some very bad things happening in these other countries. Well, lo and behold, via the good folks at Wizbang, comes this, from the Washington Post (emphasis mine --ed.):

America's Muslims Aren't as Assimilated as You Think
By Geneive Abdo
Sunday, August 27, 2006; B03

If only the Muslims in Europe -- with their hearts focused on the Islamic world and their carry-on liquids poised for destruction in the West -- could behave like the well-educated, secular and Americanizing Muslims in the United States, no one would have to worry.

So runs the comforting media narrative that has developed around the approximately 6 million Muslims in the United States, who are often portrayed as well-assimilated and willing to leave their religion and culture behind in pursuit of American values and lifestyle. But over the past two years, I have traveled the country, visiting mosques, interviewing Muslim leaders and speaking to Muslim youths in universities and Islamic centers from New York to Michigan to California -- and I have encountered a different truth. I found few signs of London-style radicalism among Muslims in the United States. At the same time, the real story of American Muslims is one of accelerating alienation from the mainstream of U.S. life, with Muslims in this country choosing their Islamic identity over their American one.
...Despite contemporary public opinion -- or perhaps because of it -- Muslim Americans consider Islam their defining characteristic, beyond any national identity. In this way, their experience in the United States resembles that of their co-religionists in Europe, where mosques are also growing, Islamic schools are being built, and practicing the faith is the center of life, particularly for the young generation.

Take from that what you will, but as for me, it makes me wonder what's going to happen in the future, especially now that the president is starting to get away from the nebulous "war on terror" concept and calling this war exactly what it is -- a war on Islamic extremism/fascism. The author of the piece says she has found "few indications of homegrown militancy among American Muslims, but not long ago I got an email from a reader who shall remain anonymous, and he had this to say (remarks paraphrased):
"...Alienation [of British youth]" is not the best term to describe their modus vivendi...possibly jihad would be more appropriate. The United States' immigrants are no different than the British youth, precisely because of jihad. Despite the fact that they are not alienated here, a visit to the corner of 43rd and Walnut in Philadelphia, a few blocks from the University of Pennsylvania, next to a church-turned-jihad community center, reveals an environment no different than any street corner in Damascus, complete with anti-Western literature, rooting for al-Qaeda, Hamas, the Taliban, and Hezbollah, watching al-Manar & al-Jazeera, and violent attacks within the neighborhood (rape,roberries,murder), and trash everywhere to match.

None of that should really be any big surprise, but it's more than a little disturbing that all this is being swept under the Islam-Is-A-Religion-Of-Peace rug. Fortunately, with the rise of the Internet, blogs and such, there are more gatekeepers and news outlets than at any time in history, which makes uncovering the threats and traitors within our walls much easier. The only question is, will enough people wake up in time to see the threats posed by this 5th column before it's too late. It's not so hard to make the case right now that this fifth column is making itself known as we speak, with incidences such as Iranian Mohammad Reza Teheri-Azar driving his car through a crowd of students on the University of North Carolina campus at Chapel Hill and Naveed Afzal Haq opening fire at at the Jewish Community Center in Seattle, killing two people and injuring five. Granted, those incidences are few right now, but it would be foolish to think the perpetrators don't embolden more of their ilk to commit more of these terrorist acts. And if the various foreign and domestic disarmament lobbies ever get their way, the American sheepdog is going to be castrated just as the ones in Europe have been, and we will go the way of Europe. No doubt many think that would be a good thing. I wonder if they'll still be thinking that as dhimmis, or as their heads are being sawn off with a dull blade. Time will tell, or better yet, perhaps our friends across the pond will get up off their knees.
In the meantime, I suppose I need to work on my Mozambique double-taps.