Cubs v Dodgers – April 25, 1966

33 years ago today Rick Monday suppressed the “free speech” of a couple of trespassers. Of course, this particular attempt at expression of free speech was not free speech at all. The rest of us are not required to provide the venue, something the left has never understood.

Which is why they want to re-instate the “Fairness” doctrine.


The 17% solution

The Myth of 90 Percent: Only a Small Fraction of Guns in Mexico Come From U.S.

The fact is, only 17 percent of guns found at Mexican crime scenes have been traced to the U.S.

What’s true, an ATF spokeswoman told, in a clarification of the statistic used by her own agency’s assistant director, “is that over 90 percent of the traced firearms originate from the U.S.”

But a large percentage of the guns recovered in Mexico do not get sent back to the U.S. for tracing, because it is obvious from their markings that they do not come from the U.S.

“Not every weapon seized in Mexico has a serial number on it that would make it traceable, and the U.S. effort to trace weapons really only extends to weapons that have been in the U.S. market,” Matt Allen, special agent of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), told FOX News.

…In 2007-2008, according to ATF Special Agent William Newell, Mexico submitted 11,000 guns to the ATF for tracing. Close to 6,000 were successfully traced — and of those, 90 percent — 5,114 to be exact, according to testimony in Congress by William Hoover — were found to have come from the U.S.

But in those same two years, according to the Mexican government, 29,000 guns were recovered at crime scenes.

In other words, 68 percent of the guns that were recovered were never submitted for tracing. And when you weed out the roughly 6,000 guns that could not be traced from the remaining 32 percent, it means 83 percent of the guns found at crime scenes in Mexico could not be traced to the U.S.

…But Tom Diaz, senior policy analyst at the Violence Policy Center, called the “90 percent” issue a red herring and said that it should not detract from the effort to stop gun trafficking into Mexico.

“Let’s do what we can with what we know,” he said. “We know that one hell of a lot of firearms come from the United States because our gun market is wide open.

Existing laws already give the United States all the power required to stop any guns from crossing the border into Mexico. All that’s needed is to enforce them, i.e., secure the border. If that’s too hard for Mexico, what difference could some new US gun laws make?

More here.

Drugs, guns and wacky pols

President Obama, Secretary of State Clinton, Attorney General Holder and some lesser lights in the Democrat hierarchy have, of late, periodically referred to the weapons and other munitions possessed by Mexican drug gangs as a problem that originates in the United States.

One item of supply and one of demand figure into these comments. The demand side, from a U.S. perspective, is for drugs. As long as it is immensely profitable for Mexican drug lords to smuggle drugs into the American market, they will constitute a demand for weaponry to defend their business. In sum, we supply the cash with which the Mexican criminals purchase military hardware.

The drug claims seem likely to be true. We have failed deter the north bound drug traffic by failing to defend our border in general. The President has shown he can stop cross-border traffic involving legitimate Mexican truckers when the Teamsters get upset, but, like George Bush, has responded with less vigor to patrolling our southern border against illegal Mexican incursion.

The weapons claim is either a lie or an admission that we cannot enforce our own laws. No weapons of the type being touted are able to be legally owned by American civilians. You cannot legally buy an automatic weapon. You cannot legally buy hand grenades. You cannot legally buy an rocket propelled grenade or a launcher for it. There is simply no legal civilian channel for these weapons. Therefore, if American civilians are involved in the arms flow to Mexico, they are already committing felonies the United States – according to Obama, Clinton and Holder – is powerless to prevent. And this claim would also require that the civilians smuggling such weapons are fools. It is not credible that highly restricted weapons are being smuggled, in quantity, across our borders twice when they need never enter the U.S. at all.

If Obama, Clinton and Holder think these weapons are being stolen from U.S. military or police supplies the law-enforcement problem is even greater. Fortunately, neither U.S. civilians nor our military are exporting automatic weapons, hand grenades or RPGs. Even the LA Times has pointed this out.

Most of these weapons are being smuggled from Central American countries or by sea, eluding U.S. and Mexican monitors who are focused on the smuggling of semiauto-matic and conventional weapons [Sic. Semi-automatic weapons have been conventional civilian arms for 100 years.] purchased from dealers in the U.S. border states of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California.

Why then, do the Democrat bigwigs keep bringing up the idea that military grade small arms are entering Mexico from the United States? Simple, if they can tie the ownership of conventional hunting and self-defense weapons to border violence and drugs, they will perhaps get a chance to further regulate these standard civilian arms. Certainly, the records of Obama, Clinton and Holder show they would welcome such an opportunity.

However, far be it from The Other Club to simply complain. There is a solution to both problems. First, legalize the drugs and then tax them to within 80% of the street value. The revenue would be more than the cap-and-trade carbon tax, without damaging the economy, and the government could reduce the death toll from bad drugs while also starving the Mexican drug cartels. They would no longer be able to afford, nor have any use for, military grade weaponry.

Second, as a matter of consistency, since Nancy Pelosi considers enforcement of our immigration laws to be un-American, require Mexico to grant Second Amendment rights to its own citizens. After all, the claim is that they do have full Constitutional rights as soon as they cross the border, legally or not. They might as well enjoy the same rights in Mexico. Isn’t it un-American that they don’t? Besides, maybe allowing the average Mexican citizen to defend himself would help law enforcement there.

Update 7:16PM
Congressional testimony here on the topic.

And here on the success of Mexican gun control laws. They do need a Second Amendment.

No fishwrap left behind

Senator Benjamin Cardin, D-MD, is proposing to fold newspapers into the Department of Education.

Cardin’s Newspaper Revitalization Act would allow newspapers to operate as nonprofits for educational purposes under the U.S. tax code, giving them a similar status to public broadcasting companies.

Under this arrangement, newspapers would still be free to report on all issues, including political campaigns. But they would be prohibited from making political endorsements.

What now, without any legislative interference, stops newspapers from becoming non-profits without giving up their right to political speech, the most important example of free speech protected by the First Amendment? I mean, aren’t the AARP and the NRA non-profits who publish magazines containing political opinion? The AARP and the NRA, of course, have members about whom they care intensely, not customers who are supposed to believe content from the Associated Press does not represent a political endorsement.

But, never mind that. It’s obviously a bit too subtle for Senator Cardin. What we must truly puzzle over is his farcical contention that NPR and PBS do not make political endorsements; on the strength of which fallacy he deftly advocates removing the First Amendment rights of newspaper publishers. “We had to destroy the Press in order to save it?”

Senator, what newspaper wants to be castrated? The thrill won’t be running up their legs anymore.

Newspapers are going online, and they will live or die there based on whether people want to read the content. If the value – educational, prurient or humorous – of the writers’ output does not attract a readership, so be it. Isn’t the demise of newspapers about the shift of advertising dollars to platforms people actually want to spend time reading? Besides, I can’t imagine how the semi-annual pledge drive from the Lansing State Journal would even be conducted. Extra sticky notes on the front page?

Minus endorsements for even local candidates and critiques of local political policy, the whole LSJ might as well be MSU sports, weather and TV listings. Suppression of political speech would probably improve the “balance” of the Letters to the Editor, but I doubt publishing the remaining missives would be worth the labor cost. Take out the wingnuts and moonbats and you’ve got a few people from PETA objecting to the local appearance of a circus or rodeo leavened with occasional pleas for everyone to stop eating meat, and seasonal complaints about snow removal and road repair. You could even make a good case that’s all political. Boring won’t help.

Senator Cardin doesn’t understand that the newspapers are failing because the content of their stories – not the editorials, the stories – are mostly endorsements of a specific political philosophy. Compounding this error, he names his bill so as to make NRA the acronym. That’s a half measure, and he should rename it.

Here’s a suggestion: Preserving Reflexive Advocacy for Venerated Democrats Act. Or maybe Sycophant Assistance Program.

G. O. P. 6

Principle, ladies and gentlemen of the GOP, principle. Principle is what is needed from the Republicans in the House to stop the looting. Today the Democrats propose to loot a few fat-cats we’ve been told to depise. Their leader has proposed to loot all of us. Connect the dots! It’s not complicated.

The Democrats are about to confiscate bonuses legally paid to a few employees of AIG which they, the Democrats, voted to approve. The Democrats may now find it necessary to succumb to a fit of populist pique because they really need to shift the blame, but Republicans in the House ALL voted against the bill Pelosi wrote at the instruction of the White House and with the collusion of Chris Dodd – and that none of them read – so we now need more than vague mouthings from Republican House leadership where members are instructed to “vote their conscience;” we need the honorable members to actually have a conscience: One that acknowledges contract law and the Constitution. And think of this: Beyond the basic rule-of-law thingy some of us expect you to follow, letting the Democrats “fix” their SNAFU with this totalitarian gesture is also a political mistake.

A unified GOP House vote would stop this theft because it needs a 2/3 majority to pass. Nancy Pelosi is coming for the AIG bonus recipients. Next she will come for you. Remember, she voted for the AIG bonuses before she voted against them, but she’s never expressed any outrage about FoO Franklin Raines, who got $50 million in bonuses for destroying Fannie Mae while he was busy helping to create the sub-prime mortgage crisis.

The House attempt to tax away 90% of legally contracted payments to specific individual citizens looks like a Bill of attainder to me.

A bill of attainder (also known as an act or writ of attainder) is an act of legislature declaring a person or group of persons guilty of some crime and punishing them without benefit of a trial. Bills of attainder are forbidden by Article I, section 9, clause 3 of the United States Constitution.

Some legal experts think so. I hope someone sues so we can find out. Maybe the ILJ.

It turns out the GOP “Leadership” wasn’t, and 85 House Republicans supported the theft: Getting Our Pound of flesh. Put the 85 on the “Requires Primary Challenge” list. They voted their conscience, after all.

Think kindly of the 6 Democrats who voted “no”: Melissa Bean, Ill.; Larry Kissell, N.C.; Michael E. McMahon, N.Y.; Walt Minnick, Idaho; Harry E. Mitchell, Ariz., and Vic Snyder, Ark. We can’t find nearly enough Republicans dedicated to limited government, and maybe these people are. If so, they deserve re-election.

Find how your Congressman voted here. I found Mike Rogers.

G. O. P. 5

Credit where it is due: Obama Administration opposes challenge to 2nd Amendment rights.

March 9 (Bloomberg) — The U.S. Supreme Court left intact lower court decisions shielding Smith & Wesson Holding Corp., Sturm, Ruger & Co. and other gunmakers from lawsuits pressed by New York City and shooting victims in Washington, D.C.

…President Barack Obama’s administration joined the gun industry in urging the Supreme Court not to question the constitutionality of the 2005 law, known as the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. Like the Bush administration, Obama’s lawyers didn’t take a position on whether the federal law required dismissal of the lawsuits.

RTWT, it is interesting to know the origins of this suit. Hint: Giuliani Opposes Pistols.

Got yours?

Obama to Seek New Assault Weapons Ban


An update 5:55PM

Atty. Gen. Eric Holder claimed banning “assault weapons” will be a benefit to Mexico in its struggle with drug gangs. A Feb. 20th State Department warning is quoted:

“Some recent Mexican army and police confrontations with drug cartels have resembled small-unit combat, with cartels employing automatic weapons and grenades,” the warning said. “Large firefights have taken place in many towns and cities across Mexico, but most recently in northern Mexico, including Tijuana, Chihuahua City and Ciudad Juarez.”

As ABC notes, the cartels used automatic weapons and grenades. Automatic weapons are those capable of firing continuously with one press of the trigger. These are machine guns. They have been heavily regulated in the United States since 1934, and it is almost impossible for a citizen to possess a working example. Grenades, similarly, are not allowed for civilian use. Those weapons being used in Mexico are not coming from the United States legally, if at all, because they could not be legally purchased here for over 70 years.

Semi-automatic weapons fire once each time the trigger is pressed and will not fire again until it is released and pressed again. Millions of everyday hunting rifles function exactly this way, but they are not proposed to be banned. Why? Because they don’t look like fully-automatic weapons. Holder is essentially claiming that the appearance – the cosmetics – of a weapon are a reason to ban it. Here is the list of cosmetics that the “assault” weapon ban considers important. Any 2 of these features means the weapon is banned:

  • Folding stock
  • Pistol grip
  • Bayonet mount
  • Flash suppressor, or threaded barrel designed to accommodate one
  • Grenade launcher (more precisely, a muzzle device which enables the launching or firing of rifle grenades)

Now, Holder didn’t issue that State Dept. warning, but he clearly agrees with it. Still, I don’t believe he thinks banning semi-automatic weapons will help the Mexicans. He wants his gun ban to be seen as needed to prevent bloody drug wars south of the border where the gangs have machine guns. Well, the gangs have machine guns, but the “assault” weapon ban has absolutely no connection to that fact. Nor did the original ban have any connection to reducing crime committed with “assault” weapons. A 2004 study funded by the Department of Justice, Titled An Updated Assessment of the Federal Assault Weapons Ban: Impacts on Gun Markets and Gun Violence, 1994-2003, notes

Should it [the ban] be renewed, the ban’s effects on gun violence are likely to be small at best and perhaps too small for reliable measurement. AWs [assault weapons] were rarely used in gun crimes even before the ban.

So, this is not about protecting anyone, Mexican cops or US inner-city drug gangs from guns. It’s about weakening the Second Amendment. If you believed Obama when he said he respected that Amendment, you made a mistake.