Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Another Lesson from the Death of Kathryn Johnston

No doubt everyone knows by now about the tragic death of Kathryn Johnston, the 92-year-old Georgia woman who opened fire on officers after Atlanta police performed a no-knock raid on her home on suspicion drug deals were going down in the house. The news is slowly emerging that Ms. Johnson, God rest her soul, may well have been gunned down for a prevarication:

Atlanta police Chief Richard Pennington confirmed Monday that the informant now claims police asked him to lie about his role in an alleged drug buy that led to the shooting.
The informant, who has not been identified, complained to department officials that the drug investigators involved in the bust had asked him to go along with a story they concocted after the shooting, said Pennington. He said the informant had been placed in protective custody.
The informant told an Atlanta television station that the officers asked him to lie to provide them cover in the shooting.
Pennington confirmed the television station's account of what the informant had claimed and said it mirrored what the informant had told his internal affairs unit over the weekend.

Several other bloggers, among them David Codrea, Firehand and Tam, have already provided excellent commentary on this whole situation and some of the issues that desperately need to be discussed because of it -- the the overreliance on SWAT and tactics like no-knock raids, the utter futility on the War On Some Drugs, the police mistakes making the general public more likely to distrust them. As for me, though, I've been thinking about it from a slightly different perspective.
We all know just how successful the War On Some Drugs has been; they could send a bunch of teenagers with slingshots up against the 101st Air Assault Division and the teenagers would fare better against the 101st than the drug warriors have against drugs in this country, all things considered. We should have learned this lesson back during Prohibition, but, of course, we haven't, and we all see where it's gotten us, with Kathryn Johnston being only the latest victim.
It's bad, oh yes, it's very bad...but can you imagine, just how much worse it would be, if these kinds of tactics were employed (and you know they damn sure would be) in the aftermath of any kind of gun ban and confiscation? We all know (or at least we should) that untold amounts of weaponry would be squirreled away in the leading up to such an order, and we all know just what would happen during (and after) any kind of resistance, organized or not. The War On Some Drugs has indeed turned into a clusterfuck of epic proportions, but if they went after guns like they did drugs in the aftermath of a federal gun ban with no grandfathering, comparing the escalated War On Guns to the War On Some Drugs as it is today would be akin to comparing the storming of the beaches of Normandy to a holdup on the New York subway. It would be a nightmare, unlike anything we've ever seen in this country, at least on a widespread scale. My prediction? The morgues would fill up, likely with many innocent people. And, of course, so would the prisons. We just think we have prison overcrowding now. My money says we ain't seen nothin' yet, and God forbid we ever go down that road. No doubt the economy would tank, and society would go down the tubes as increasing numbers of people distrusted police more and more until they got to the point of seeing the police as the enemy. We'd likely see civil war (and not these tempest-in-a-teapot skirmishes the media are now calling "civil war" in Iraq, either.) And the Bradys, the VPC and their ilk have shown no sign of giving a damn about any of the possibilities, either. A pox on all their houses. I renewed my NRA membership today, and a membership in Gun Owners of America is in my future...I hope it's in yours, too, if you're not already a member (or an NRA member, for that matter). I would much, much rather be fighting these people on the state and federal government levels. And I know the NRA is a damn sight far from perfect...but change begins with us.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

More Cracks in the Rationality Facade at the New York Times

So I was doing the blog run earlier today, and I saw this little snippet, from the New York Times, The Old and Decrepit Gray Lady of American journalism, as they call her, from an editorial lambasting Senator George Allen for his bill to permit concealed carry in America's national parks:

America’s confusion about the Second Amendment is now nearly total. An amendment that ensures a collective right to bear arms has been misread in one legislature after another — often in the face of strong public disapproval — as a law guaranteeing an individual’s right to carry a weapon in public. And, in a perversion of monumental proportions, the battle to extend that right has largely succeeded in co-opting the language of the Civil Rights movement, so that depriving an American of the right to carry a gun in public sounds, to some, as offensive as stripping him of the right to vote. Senator Allen’s bill is, of course, being cheered by the gun lobby, which sees it not as an assault on public safety but as a way of nationalizing the armed paranoia that the National Rifle Association and its cohorts stand for.

Where to start? Well, how about at the beginning.
I'd like to know just exactly how many Constitutional scholars are on the New York Times' payroll, because they're presenting this "collective right" horseshit like it's set in stone, and that just isn't true. As Jeff at Alphecca points out, even more liberal, anti-gun scholars such as Laurence Tribe and Alan Dershowitz have come to advocate the individual rights viewpoint. Of the so-called "scholars" who have espoused the whole "collective rights" nonsense, I can think of AT LEAST TWO who have been thoroughly discredited as outright frauds -- Michael Bellesiles and Saul Cornell. And of a third, Dave Kopel once wrote that Chief Justice Warren Burger's article in Parade magazine on the Second Amendment represented, "in a sense, the high-water mark for anti-Second Amendment 'scholarship.'" Kopel also links to an article in which he outlines fully six United States Supreme Court decisions affirming the individual rights viewpoint of the Second Amendment. So there goes Pravda-on-Hudson's feverish ranting about "a collective right to bear arms."
Now about this "perversion of monumental proportions," as they call it, of effectively casting self-defense as a civil right. What can one really say to that? My God, these people are living in a fantasy world! Not that any of that is news, of course, but I am continually amazed by just how whong these ivory-tower leftists are about so many things. I've spelled it out before, and so have many other people, but I was reading IMAO the other day, and I saw this response from Frank J. to Michael Moore concering a certain part of a manifesto of sorts published on Moore's website:

What are a bunch of unarmed people to criminals? Targets.
I thought even liberals gave up on the idea that the way to make people safe is to make them helpless. There is no greater right than that of self-defense, and I would trade my freedom of speech to continue being able to carry a gun.
And then I'd take my freedom of speech back because I have a gun.

And for "freedom of speech," you can substitute any other freedom protected in the Bill of Rights. I believe it was Mao Tse-tung who said that all political power comes from the barrel of a gun, and as bad as I hate to give credit to a murderous dictator, he was absolutely right. It's just too bad the editors of the New York Times can't see that (or refuse to see it) from their lofty, insulated cocoon.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

A Few Words on an Old Debate: Glock vs. 1911

I know this one's been hashed out on blogs and Internet gunboards perhaps an infinite number of times, but a couple of posts from Porta's Cat and JR got me to thinking yet again, most notably PC's reference to the "1911 Kool-Aid drinkers."
Glocks are no doubt great pistols. Reliable straight out of the box and will eat just about anything you put through them, reasonably accurate, and you can't ask for much more from a combat pistol than that.
Now, you'll notice I did NOT say, "you could not ask for ANYTHING more than that." Because, well, you can, and that's where the 1911 slams the ball out of the park. What are those things? Ergonomics and a good trigger -- although if you think about it, I guess a good trigger IS part of the ergonomic package. Glocks are great pistols indeed, but they feel like bricks in my hand and with that striker-fire system, the trigger feels so damned spongy it feels like shooting a water gun. Perhaps that package is an acquired taste, something to get used to (no doubt it would be worth it with the plastic pistol's reliability), but I do so tire of the Glock fanboys who pooh-pooh the 1911 design simply because it's "old" and "unreliable." As PC points out, the 1911 is a pistol designed for ball ammunition and is noted for feeding issues (although I've heard here and there that issue is at least mitigated with a ramped barrel). I know very well that buying a 1911 can be a dicey endeavor; my Springfield GI had to go back to Geneseo for a new extractor and my Kimber Tac Ultra II had feeding issues with ball ammo (I eventually found out the problem was a weak spring in one of the three mags I got). Knock on wood, my Stainless Target II 10mm has yet to hiccup and I've just about it gotten it broken in with around 370 rounds through it so far, though, once again, with that one the real test is gonna come when I start putting real 10mm ammo through it instead of this slightly-hotter-than-.40Short&Weak through it. It handled the Silvertips (at about 1240 fps) with nary a problem. But I digress. People raise hell about the 1911's issues, and rightly so, but I would be willing to bet that outside of magazine-related issues, the vast majority of the problems that spring forth with modern-day 1911 pistols are due to deviations from JMB's original design...varying barrel lengths, external extractors, alloy frames, tighter tolerances, etc. Now, that's not to say that a stock 1911 built to JMB's original specs with a ramped, throated and polished barrel is going to be a Glock-reliable weapon, but it'd be interesting to see how close it came. As for me, right now, though, I'll admit that it's my Ruger P90 sitting in the nightstand loaded for goblin with 230-grain Hydra-Shok. That's more due to money issues than anything else, though, i.e., I don't have the money to run ~500 rounds of quality hollowpoints through any of my 1911s like they say you should to be reasonably enough sure that it works. I didn't even run that much through the P90, though...I've put perhaps 100 rounds of HS (and maybe 100 more of Winchester 230-grain JHP) through it and it works fine. But then, the P90 has a hell of a reputation for durability, one I'll surely vouch for -- and have before. I've heard it said that if it won't feed in a Ruger, it just won't feed. Back to the 1911, though, I know that getting one to work right can indeed be a trial-and-error process, and many people don't have the time for that. Such is the nature of the beast, I suppose, but it doesn't have to be like that. I would absolutely love to see how widespread these reliability issues are -- and not just going by anecdotal evidence on Internet gun boards. They can be reliable to an extent, but then, the bashers (of both the Glock AND the 1911) will come out of the woodwork always; that's the nature of THAT beast, and it can't be avoided. As for right now, I know I wouldn't have any problem carrying that little Kimber with 230-grain ball ammo (again, haven't tested it with JHPs), never mind the plastic pistol worshippers.
(Oh, and Porta's Cat? If you read this, I don't mean to sound like I was calling you out or calling you any derisive names. I don't worship at the altar of John Moses Browning...I just think his pistol is the best design for me.)

Monday, November 20, 2006

National Ammo Day, and Sightseeing at Shooters

As my luck would have it, I had to work Sunday and was going out of town Saturday, so I thought I'd just make my National Ammo Day purchase early. So Friday afternoon I fired up the truck and rode up to Shooters Supply to pick up some. I had my eyes on more 10mm for the Kimber...I could have gotten the Blazer cheaper at Academy, but I also wanted more 10mm brass for when I start reloading after the first of the year. So I went in and picked up 100 rounds of 180-grain Federal American Eagle. (Why, why, whyyy don't they give us 10mm folks full-power ammo?!?!) I looked toward the back of the store...and what did I see? One of these...

That's right, a Barrett M82A1 .50BMG, live and in the metal! I've heard quite a lot about this legendary rifle but had never actually seen one in person. It was really cool...if I could have stayed longer, I'd have asked the folks there what they knew about it, if they'd ever shot one. Could I afford it? God, but I only wish. I do love the way they advertised it, though...

Cost - about the same as a good used pickup or a new 4-wheeler. But, everybody already has a pickup and a 4-wheeler, right?

I gotta say, I got a kick out of that. ;-)You'll have to call 'em if you wanna know how much it is; I don't know that they want it advertised, but I will say it's right in line with what I thought it'd be, with that scope and case. I seriously wish I could afford one on general principle alone, though. I have an enormous amount of respect for Ronnie Barrett after what he did when the LAPD sent one of their M82A1s back for repair. Would that all gun manufacturers anted up like that.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Judicial Malpractice; or, Yet Another RCOB Moment

Via THR, comes this, from Dunn, North Carolina:

A Dunn man was found not guilty yesterday by a Harnett County Superior Court Jury in a controversial shooting.
Brad Hines, 33, was acquitted of a charge of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill and inflicting serious injury.
Mr. Hines was charged with the Aug. 1, 2005 shooting of Robert Surles, 43, of Dunn at Mr. Surles' auto body shop.
A service manager for Perry Brothers Tire Service, Mr. Hines testified he was attacked by Mr. Surles and an unknown, armed black male while attempting to collect a debt owed his employer.
Mr. Hines testified that Mr. Surles attacked him with a board and the other man drew a gun on him.
Mr. Hines said he pulled a handgun, for which he has a permit, and fired a single shot in self-defense, wounding Mr. Surles.
In an October 2005 hearing, District Court Judge Marcia Stewart found no probable cause for the charge against Mr. Hines.
But Senior Assistant District Attorney Peter Strickland decided to press on with the case and secured a grand jury indictment against Mr. Hines.

After the verdict was read, Judge Ammons gave Mr. Hines some advice.
"Take that concealed weapon permit and turn it in to the Sheriff's Office - you don't need it," Judge Ammons said. "If the gun is returned to you, go sell it. You don't need it."
Mr. Strickland told Judge Ammons he wants the gun destroyed.
Judge Ammons convened a hearing to decide the matter.
"In a hearing before a judge, the weapon can either be returned to the defendant or I can order the firearm turned over to the sheriff and destroyed," Judge Ammons said.
Mr. Hayes defended Mr. Hines' right to keep his firearm.
"The court heard the evidence, Mr. Hines is in lawful possession and has a legal permit," Mr. Hayes said. "You're destroying a $600 to $800 gun which belongs to someone who has never committed a violent crime and you've heard testimony of his good character and reputation."
"We have heard the evidence and Mr. Hines took a firearm into a situation late at night where he knew it might be used," Mr. Strickland said. "The state is concerned a similar incident might happen again."
After hearing arguments from both sides, Judge Ammons ruled the firearm be turned over to Harnett County Sheriff Larry Rollins and destroyed.

A song lyric from the great Merle Haggard comes to mind: "Are we rollin' downhill like a snowball headed for hell, with no kind of chance for the flag or the Liberty Bell..."
And when I see stories like this, especially in a place like North Carolina, the answer to the Hag's question can't be any other than a resounding yes. Call it senseless if you will, but to me that's far too kind. What this judge and prosecutor did to this citizen was downright criminal. You wonder why people lose faith in the judicial system? Because of cases like this. I am just at a complete loss for words here. It's wrong, unjust, immoral, and everything else, and if there were any justice left in the world, this judge and prosecutor would be held accountable and punished for what they've done. I must commend Mr. Hines for showing superhuman restraint...if I'd had some unelected black-robed elite talk to me like that, to say the least I'd have really given them the what-for. With both barrels, so to speak. I hope for his sake this isn't the end of this horrible story, but we will see.

More (Late) Music Thoughts: Time Changes Everything...

I really should read Jack Sparks more than I do...
Via Scott Chaffin, The Fat Guy, comes this, the Sparkster's running commentary on the latest CMA Awards show. As with all his other running commentaries on the awards in years before, I found myself laughing and nodding my head in agreement. My attitude, though, is a good bit different than his -- as opposed to his outright hostility, mine is more or less yawning indifference, with at least a couple of exceptions. I really liked Brooks & Dunn's earlier stuff, and it's still good...but more recently, I just find myself yawning as I change the station whenever they come on. I'm sure there are more than a few people who would say that with few exceptions, the best stuff from the albums (from every artist, not just Brooks & Dunn) isn't released to radio, and I'd definitely agree with that. So I suppose they're still making halfway decent music, but, for example, "Play Something Country" was just more of the same old tired turbo-tonk that pretty much ran its course about 1996 or so, and "Believe" was a pretty good song as far as lyrics go, but quite underwhelming as a record. Now that I think about it, the only consistently good Brooks & Dunn album I heard was 1993's Hard Workin' Man. ("Mexican Minutes" remains, to my mind, the best song they ever recorded, and ironically enough Kix Brooks was singing lead on that one.) I guess being exposed to so much of the music that came out before Hot New Country exploded out of the gate in the early 1990s pretty much ruined the appeal of a lot of the music from 1995 on for me. At one point about six years ago, I had most of Kenny Chesney's then-current output, but once I heard Pat Green and Cory Morrow it went back to the used-cd store, and I never did like Rascal Flatts. As a matter of fact, I heartily despise them. I think they and bands like them pretty much encapsulate everything that's wrong with mainstream country music; as some people might say, they make "country music for people who don't like country music," and the same could well be said for people like Kenny Chesney and Keith Urban, too, no matter how talented the latter might be with his guitar.
As for Alan Jackson "having the good sense to work with Alison Krauss," well, I would have believed that was a sensible move on his part if he'd actually made a bluegrass record instead of whatever the hell it was his latest cd could be called. I really, really hesitate to call it crap, because I don't want to think anything Alan Jackson recorded could really descend to that level, but from what I heard of it, I didn't deem it worth spending my money on, and that's about as charitable as I can be as far as that goes. Someday he "might grow into it," I suppose, but then again I could never, ever see George Jones doing anything like what Alan did with Alison Krauss, and the same goes for Alan. It just doesn't fit him, and quite honestly I don't think it ever will. Alan's a honky-tonker, pure country plain and simple, and that's all he'll ever be and all he needs to be. He needs to get back to that. One would think he'd have learned from George Strait. I'm all for taking chances and shaking things up, but I'd rather have seen that bluegrass record, or maybe even a Western swing album, although on second thought that last one's probably more up the Strait man's alley.
Am I still a mainstream country music fan? I don't know if you could call me that so much anymore. It seems my radio is always on the classic country and classic rock stations now, and while I do still tune in to country radio regularly, it seems nowadays there's much less that gets me even halfway excited. As the old song goes, time changes everything, indeed it does...

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Ruminations on Ruger Revolvers

As it happens, most of my defensive sidearms have been semi-autos. I was drawn to the capacity advantages more than anything else, which is why the first one was the Ruger P89, with its 15-round capacity. I eventually discovered the joys of the revolver, though, and even in this day and age, where the high-tech high-capacity polymer autopistols seem to be popping up everywhere you look (even Wilson Combat's gotten into the combat tupperware game), there's still much to be said for a good wheelgun made of American steel (or any steel, for that matter). Engineered to handle much more powerful cartridges (though I've said before that I would not feel undergunned with full-house 10mm), and about as complicated as a stone axe, just to name a couple of things.
So a few months ago I picked myself up a medium-frame .357, a stainless-steel Ruger GP-100, with the 4" barrel. Everyone says Smith & Wesson is more or less the gold standard for revolvers; indeed, over at THR not long ago, this thread discussed how a couple of guys at one range made fun of one shooter because he had a Ruger and not one of the aforementioned S&Ws. I don't have any personal experiences with the S&W revolvers, but I'm here to tell you that the GP-100 is surely nothing to be ashamed of. Like all Ruger guns, it's built like a tank. Most revolvers wil eat anything you feed them, of course (it's just the way they were designed), but I seem to recall a story of a Ruger GP-100 actually surviving a double-charge. Based on my experience with the gun, I'd believe it, too, though I surely don't want to test it!

I've put about 400 or so rounds through it, equally divided between 125-grain .357 softpoint and 130-grain .38 Special fmj. Recoil's not quite as bad as a snubbie, though it's still pretty sharp. My accuracy with it still leaves a lot to be desired, but I love that gun. Something tells me my great-great grandkids will, too.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

This Does Not Compute

A comment on a post at The Gun Nut...(emphasis mine --ed.)

Gun control with Democrats is a truism. The Party believes its a voter issue as some Baptists believe in total immersion. Oddly, I see congressional politicians becoming overall more conservative. Many of the Democrats voted in last night aren’t very liberal. I think Nancy P. will have her hands full keeping a Democratic House all in line.

I would like to believe more will be done for the shooting sports in access with Democrats running Congress. GOP wasn’t a friend to hunters and anglers. For Democrats to be against hunting and fishing access is like being against Mom and apple pie. Even Schumer and Hillary claim to signed on to The 2005 Open Fields Bill.

Well, I would say that for anyone to be against hunting and fishing access is like being against Mom and apple pie, but that's just me...
What really gets me, though, is what this guy says, noted in bold, specifically, "Gun control with Democrats is a truism. The Party believes its a voter issue as some Baptists believe in total immersion...I would like to believe more will be done for the shooting sports in access with Democrats running Congress." Call me crazy, I may well be misinterpreting this, but it seems to me that he's saying, "Democrats want more gun control, it's just one of those things like the sun rising in the east, but more good might be done for the shooting sports, and that's all that matters to me." In that case, it looks like yet another Fuddite throwing us non-hunters under the bus, yet again. And once again, it must be said, that it doesn't matter what's out there to hunt, or what kind of access you have to it, if there's nothing left to hunt with. I would say what I really think...but I won't say that, because that would be sinking to their level, and I won't do that, as tempting as it may be. What I am thinking, I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy, even if they did deserve it. I just wish these people would wake up and see the truth in what Thomas Jefferson said: "We must hang together, gentlemen...else, we shall most assuredly hang separately."
I hope it doesn't take New Orleans-style gun confiscations for them to see that. But I am increasingly afraid that it will.

Tuesday's Gone, With The Wind...

...and with it perhaps any certainty of holding the line on any further infringements on the people's natural right to keep and bear arms.
Ask ten different people about that and you're probably going to get ten different answers. Dave Kopel, in National Review, sees things as not being nearly as bad as they could be, though with at least a couple of caveats...

Things look a lot better for the Second Amendment than they do for the Republican party. A race-by-race analysis of the Senate suggests that, while party control of the Senate could change, the Senate is very likely to retain a pro-gun working majority.
A 50-seat tsunami in the House would result in a gain of over two dozen seats for anti-gun forces; the more realistic scenario is a total Democratic gain of 30 of less, with about half of the freshman Democrats being anti-gun. This would leave the House with a fairly comfortable pro-Second Amendment majority.
In the governors’ mansions, gun owners could even come out ahead on this election, if pro-Second Amendment candidates hold on in some close races; gun owners already have one big gain sewed up, since Ohio’s governorship will be changing from an anti-gun Republican Taft to a pro-gun Democrat Strickland.
In Congress, changes in party control would have a significant effect on gun rights. Senate-Majority-Leader-in-waiting Harry Reid has a good record on gun issues, and played a major role in the passage of the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Firearms Act.Yet although a Democratic Senate would contain more pro-gun rights Democrats than the chamber has seen for over 15 years, Reid would still be beholden to a caucus in which anti-gun senators would be a very large majority, and in which all presidential contenders would have a poor (Feingold, Bayh) to terrible (Clinton, Gore, Kerry, Obama) record on gun issues.
Significantly, while a Democratic Senate might have a pro-gun floor majority, it would not invoke the nuclear option against a Supreme Court nomination filibuster. This wouldn’t matter much anyway if President Bush were to nominate Alberto Gonzales, whom Second Amendment activists would have little reason to support, but there is reason to hope that the president might choose a better nominee.
Although the floor of the U.S. House will still have a pro-gun majority, a Speaker Pelosi, with her perfect anti-gun voting record, would almost certainly bring forward anti-gun bills when she decided the time was ripe. John Conyers, as chair of the Judiciary Committee, and Louise Slaughter, as chair of the Rules Committee, would ensure that no pro-Second Amendment legislation was ever brought to the floor, except in the very unlikely event that a majority of the entire House signed a discharge petition.

And, of course, if you ask ten different gun owners about the future, you'll get ten different answers there as well, from "door-to-door confiscations are on the horizon!" to "Two years, they ain't gon' be able to do that much..."
As for me, I really don't know. Bill Clinton admitted that the NRA and gun owners cost Democrats control of Congress last time, and even that bill was not as bad as it could have been, it being the largely symbolic bill that it was along with its grandfather clause for existing weapons, thereby avoiding the "Mr. and Mrs. America, turn them all in," and potential door-to-door confiscations. Even with those caveats, the 10-year sunset provision had to be put in because it wouldn't have passed otherwise, and still the Democrats took the beating on Election Day 1994. Gun owners no doubt have very long memories, and it remains to see whether the leftists who will soon be at the levers of power in Congress remember this, but no matter what happens, the fact is the Republicans lost because they lost touch with the people who sent them to Washington in 1994. It's really just that simple. Bans on gay marriage and flag-burning? Federal plans to pay for prescription drugs? Amnesty for illegal aliens because they supposedly "do the jobs Americans won't do"? Between the RINOs on the left flank and the "social conservatives" on the right flank, the Republican base was more or less taken for granted, effectively shut out. And the chickens have come home to roost.
And where do the gun owners like myself come in on this? Well, that one probably requires more time than I have this morning to give a full answer to, but the biggest thing, I think, is that it all boils down to less government intrusion on all fronts and more adherence to what the Constitution demands of our government. And wasting time on issues like gay marriage and flag-burning is wasting time that could be spent on other, more important things, like, say, securing the southern border from illegals and foreign terrorists with suitcase nukes (you know, providing for the common defense as mandated by the preamble to the Constitution). If the national GOP has any sense at all, they'll take Tuesday's results as a warning: If you try to outflank the Democrats on the left, you have just obliterated your base's reasons for voting for you. Get back to work on keeping our taxes low, cutting spending, securing our borders and getting rid of the presumption of guilt for gun owners and potential gun owners. On that last thing? Rome wasn't built in a day, but we have to start somewhere.
Many gun owners are pondering getting something like an M1A or AR-15 now, before they're banned, yet again. If I had the money (for that, or one of Ronnie Barrett's M82A1s), I'd spring for one, but as it is, it looks like all I'm going to be able to afford is another 1911 (and believe me, I am not complaining!) or something like a Ruger Mini-30. We shall see...

Friday, November 03, 2006

I Get Referrals...

Looking again at the ole Sitemeter, I get referrals from this Google search. Looks like more than a few people are either looking for the lyrics to that song or to find out who sings it. Maybe more people are hearing it than I thought. Who knew?
And to anyone looking for a place for "listening (to) walton and johnson on the web" live, you can go here and probably here. I sure wish Eagle 98.1 was on the Web, though...that radio station is awesome!

HCI Endorsements for Texas Representatives in Congress, And Trouble For Ron Paul

My fellow Texan JR over at A Keyboard and A .45 pointed me to this link with Handgun Control, Inc.'s endorsements for Texas' U.S. House races this year.


Four of our reps. have gotten this endorsement, including Sheila Jackson Lee, who, according to this link, "as council woman on the Houston City Council...sponsored and passed a resolution calling for Congress to pass the ban on semi-automatics. When confronted with a packed city council chamber full of citizens opposed to her resolution, she displayed nothing but a rude contempt for them. She also showed her ignorance of the legislation she said she was supporting when she stated that the guns ought to be banned because they were 'machine guns' which is, of course, completely untrue." Not really a surprise to me, though, as she always seemed to be more than a bit of a self-righteous blowhard, and a media hog, too.
Other endorsements include Charlie Gonzalez, Lloyd Doggett and Eddie Bernice Johnson, and the biggest thing I could find on those folks was that they all voted against the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, and against decreasing the waiting period for guns purchased at gun shows from 3 days to 1; that is, mandating the background check at the show be conducted within 24 hours instead of 72. As far as I am concerned, though, voting against lawsuit immunity for the American firearms industry is a pretty reliable indicator of where your senator or representative would stand on your natural right to arms...with one very notable exception, that is.
Via David Codrea, once again (David, indeed you do yeoman's work for us behind enemy lines, and God bless you!), we find that Texas Rep. Ron Paul has gotten a lower rating from the NRA than his Democratic opponent, and it seems this is solely due to Paul's opposition to the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. And, as always, I find myself reading what Mr. Codrea has written and nodding my head in agreement with every word (emphasis mine -- ed.):

Candidly, I could argue with Rep. Paul on this point, as the lawsuits seem clearly designed to infringe on the Second Amendment. I'd be interested in seeing the point-counterpoint of such a debate, but now is not the time with the election less than a week away.

One thing is certain: Ron Paul has made his stands based on convictions, and a desire to stay true to the intent of the Founders. Paul has worked to roll back oppressive edicts that infringe on our right to keep and bear arms. He is clearly the superior gun rights candidate in the Texas 14th District.

Yes, indeed. What this country desperately needs is more Ron Pauls and less Nancy Pelosis. Send him some money if you can...

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Would You Bet Your Life On The Lack of Intelligence of U.S. Soldiers?

I'm sure by now, everyone and his brother's heard about this little gaffe by the esteemed (sic) junior United States Senator from Massachusetts, John f. Kerry...

While campaigning in California, Kerry told a college crowd Monday: "You know, education, if you make the most of it, you study hard, you do your homework and you make an effort to be smart, you can do well. If you don't, you get stuck in Iraq."

I was listening to Walton and Johnson this morning, and one of the characters on the show, Billy Edd Hatfield, had a very good question: Would Senator Kerry position himself about 300 yards from a hidden Marine sniper, and bet his life on that sniper's education (or lack thereof *snort*) in his chosen craft? Would that an intrepid reporter on the campaign trail had asked him that...