A Geek With Guns

Chronicling the depravities of the State.

Archive for December, 2012

Vacation Time

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I’m on vacation until the beginning of next year. Due to this posting on this blog may become erratic. I’ll try to get content up but I have a decent amount of stuff scheduled already. If you don’t see many updates now you know why.

Written by Christopher Burg

December 26th, 2012 at 10:00 am

Posted in Side Notes

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Merry Christmas

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Once again we find ourselves celebrating another Christmas. I really don’t have much to say about the holiday other than I hope you’re enjoying it regardless of what religious beliefs you do or don’t hold. Whether you’re celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ, the winter solstice (which was technically four days ago), Yule, Hanukkah (which has already technically concluded), Kwanzaa, or nothing more than the excuse to get together and drink with friends and family members I wish you good times. Now I leave you with Gwar, because it’s the most appropriate holiday video I could think of:

Written by Christopher Burg

December 25th, 2012 at 10:00 am

Posted in Side Notes

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The State’s Monopoly on Violence

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Jerrold Nadler is on his way to becoming one of the most honest statists in existence. Shortly after the shooting in Connecticut Nadler put his foot in his mouth by claiming that mass shootings have become more common. During the same speech he called on Obama to exploit the tragedy in order to advance the cause of gun control. His call for the president to exploit the tragedy was one of the more honest statist quotes made by a politician. While most people are aware that the state exploits tragedies in order to forward its goals it’s rare to hear an agent of the state come out and admit it. They usually try to hide their grabs for power behind a thin veil of public safety and protecting children. It appears that Nadler is on a quest to explain statism to the masses because he had another gem:

Nadler added. “One of the definitions of a nation state is that the state has a monopoly on legitimate violence. And the state ought to have a monopoly on legitimate violence.”

The very definition of a state is an entity that claims a monopoly on the initiation of force within a geographic area. Even though most politicians know this Nadler is one of the very few bold enough to come out and say it. Nadler’s statement raises an interesting question, who gets to define what violence is legitimate? I’m sure Nadler would say the state gets to decide that, as it’s a belief most statists hold. Why somebody would support an entity claiming a monopoly on violence deciding what type of violence it can legitimately wield is beyond me.

I hope Nadler keeps explaining statism. Eventually he’ll admit that taxation is nothing more than theft.

Written by Christopher Burg

December 24th, 2012 at 11:30 am

Something I’ve Often Wondered About Gun Control Advocates

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There’s something I’ve often wondered about advocates of gun control. Most gun control advocates urge businesses to put up signs announcing that their property is a gun-free zone. On the other hand I don’t see many gun control advocates putting those signs on their homes. A professor at George Washington University is asking his fellow gun control advocates to correct that problem:

We should not wait for our elected officials, in President Obama’s good words, “to come together and take meaningful action to prevent more tragedies like this, regardless of the politics.” We should do our share. One way to proceed is to mark our homes, apartments and condos, with a “gun free” sign. Parents should notify their friends that they would be reluctant to send their child over for a play date unless the home was safe from guns. Residential communities should pass rules that ban bringing guns onto their premises, clearly marking them as gun free.

Anyone who puts up such signs will become an ambassador for gun control, because they are sure to be challenged by gun advocates to explain their anti-gun positions. Here are some pointers they may wish to use against the typical pro-gun talking points.

I think there’s a reason why most advocates of gun control don’t advertise their dwellings as gun-free zones, it acts as a notice to criminals that the cost of burglarizing the house or committing acts of violence against the residents is very low. Most advocates of gun control ask others to declare their property gun-free zones while they fail to do the same. It’s a double standard.

I actually agree with this professor’s call for gun control advocates to post their homes as gun-free zones. Such an action would demonstrate the gun control advocate’s sincerity. Furthermore I believe they should take it a step further by stating that police will not be called in the event of somebody breaking in or that the police will be commanded to respond unarmed. We all know that the police perform violence by proxy. When somebody calls the police they are implicitly asking the responding officers to use violence against an aggressor. Shouldn’t a gun control advocate demand the police respond unarmed? After all advocates of gun control continue to claim that being unarmed is safer than being armed even. They claim that anybody carrying a gun will just have it taken from them by an attacker. In the name of officer safety shouldn’t gun control advocates call 911 and say “Quick, there’s somebody in my house! Please send the police but for God’s sake tell them to leave their guns at the station!”

Written by Christopher Burg

December 24th, 2012 at 11:00 am

You are Cordially Invited

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Apparently Dianne Feinstein is looking into performing a wealth transfer from gun owners to the state:

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said that she and other gun control advocates are considering a law that would create a program to purchase weapons from gun owners, a proposal that could be compulsory.

“We are also looking at a buy-back program,” Feinstein said today in a press conference. “Now, again, this is a work in progress so these are ideas in the development.”

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, D-N.Y., already discussed the possibility of a buy-back law for his state, but he made clear it would be a forced buyback.

“Confiscation could be an option,” Cuomo told The New York Times yesterday when discussing semiautomatic weapons. “Mandatory sale to the state could be an option. Permitting could be an option — keep your gun but permit it.”

The only appropriate response to this proposal is to say “Molon labe,” which means “Come and take them.” This proposal demonstrates the problem with firearm registrations, when the state inevitably decides to confiscate firearms they know who has them and roughly how many they have. Proposals like this are why we need to start setting up decentralized firearm manufacturing capabilities. It’s obvious the state wants to disarm all non-state agents, which isn’t surprising since it exists solely by expropriating from the people, but such a goal is literally impossible if anybody who wants a gun is able to manufacture one in their own home.

Written by Christopher Burg

December 24th, 2012 at 10:30 am

Monday Metal: Rebellion by Grave Digger and Van Canton

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This week we’re going old school with a song by Grave Digger. For those unfamiliar with Grave Digger (What the fuck is wrong with you?) they are a German heavy metal band that was founded in 1980. It’s hard to find a more pure heavy metal band and their song Rebellion is catchy as hell:

As an added bonus I’m also going to include Van Canto’s A Capella cover because it’s awesome:

Written by Christopher Burg

December 24th, 2012 at 10:00 am

Posted in Media

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Additional Comments Regarding the NRA Press Release

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I got through reading a transcript of the National Rifle Association’s (NRA) press release [PDF]. Everything thing I said in my previous post, which was based on a live blog of the event, still stands. I also have a few additional things I’d like to note. First there was this comment:

A dozen more killers? A hundred? More? How can we possibly even guess how many, given our nation’s refusal to create an active national database of the mentally ill?

There is a great deal of irony in the NRA discussing the lack of a federal database in a negative light. A federal database for mentally ill individuals would be a disaster. Consider the stigma mental illness has in this country. Many people will not seek help when they are suffering a mental illness because doing so carries a great deal of social consequences. People who received psychiatric help are often seen as crazy. People in the United States also hold a general attitude that a mental illness is forever. How many people suffered from depression, post traumatic stress syndrom, and other temporary mental illnesses only to make a full recovery and lead normal lives? Do we really want these people to be listed in a federal database? Federal databases are already used by employers to weed out potential employees. Creating a mental illness database would likely lead to people in that database being unable to find meaningful employment. Federal databases aren’t a solution for violence and they aren’t a solution for mental illness.

Also consider the ramifications of a mental illness database. Who here could be diagnosed with a mental illness? Most Internet denizens could be diagnosed with some form of autism. If an adult version of oppositional defiant disorder is ever created I’ll be diagnosed with it. I suffer a severe case of psychological reactance (Does it show?), which could easily be labeled as a mental illness. Do we want to base the right to keep and bear arms on a mental illness database? Do we want our gun rights in the hand psychologists who determine what qualifies as a mental illness? What the NRA suggested is a dangerous path, one I don’t want to see this country travel down. We need to help those who need help. This means encouraging those who suffering from mental illness to get help. Considering the social stigma that mental illness carries in this country I don’t think creating a mental illness database is going to do anything but discourage those needing help from seeking it.

Is the press and political class here in Washington so consumed by fear and hatred of the NRA and America’s gun owners that you’re willing to accept a world where real resistance to evil monsters is a lone, unarmed school principal left to surrender her life to shield the children in her care? No one — regardless of personal political prejudice — has the right to impose that sacrifice

This was a good point. The primary issue at hand is that violent criminals know the cost of performing violence in schools is relatively low because there are no armed personnel there. With that said, the NRA’s approach to correcting this issue leaves something to be desired:

Now, the National Rifle Association knows that there are millions of qualified active and retired police; active, reserve and retired military; security professionals; certified firefighters and rescue personnel; and an extraordinary corps of patriotic, trained qualified citizens to join with local school officials and police in devising a protection plan for every school. We can deploy them to protect our kids now. We can immediately make America’s schools safer — relying on the brave men and women of America’s police force.

The budget of our local police departments are strained and resources are limited, but their dedication and courage are second to none and they can be deployed right now.

In my opinion expanding the police state into public schools isn’t a good approach. I favor repealing laws that establish gun-free zones so that armed individuals can enter school property without first having to disarm. That solution raises the cost of performing violence in schools by removing the practical guarantee that no armed individuals are within. Having costume-clad guys with badges will further reinforce the police state on children. Furthermore I don’t feel comfortable having children guarded by individuals whose primary job description involves extorting wealth from people. A majority of police time is spent enforcing state decrees against nonviolent individuals who have harmed nobody. Do we want individuals guarding children when their job consists of kicking down doors in the hopes of finding other individuals in possession of a plant?

Putting bureaucracies in charge of protecting children is bound to fail. At the very least repealing laws that establish gun-free zones would allow local communities to develop more appropriate solutions to deal with school shootings. Ultimately though I think Jeffrey Tucker nailed it:

So armed guards it is, at least according to the NRA. Instead of letting school handle their own security and getting out from under the government’s central plan (see my article on this), the NRA is living up to the caricature and proposing that more weapons in anyone’s hands as the solution. The real solution is to deal more broadly with the issue of security itself.

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Contrary to left and right, the solution is not more guns in the hands of the cops and other state officials, much less gun-totting teachers (or disarmed teachers and administrators, for that matter). The solution is to have schools deal with security in the same way that jewelry stores, banks, and private home owners deal with security issues.

One of the biggest problems regarding school security is that public schools don’t have any incentive to provide security. Children are practically mandated to attend schools that are either run or heavily regulated by the state. No consequences befall a school when something bad happens. Will anybody be prosecuted for failing to provide proper security to those children in Connecticut? No, because the state was tasked with that job and the state has a monopoly on determining who can and can’t be sued. Furthermore suing the state accomplishes nothing because it gets its money through extortion. If the state allow you to sue it and it grants you monetary compensation you merely motivated it to extort more money. The primary reason schools fail to provide security to students is because they are state managed institutions, meaning there are no failure conditions.

If you want to protect your children remove them from state managed schools. Homeschooling, unschooling, and agorist education solutions will allow you to regain control over your children’s education and safety. Why rely on the state? It has a proven track record of failing in the task of providing education and safety.

The NRA Press Conference

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I haven’t had a chance to watch the National Rifle Association’s (NRA) press conference yet but based on the live blog done by Sebastian at Shall Not Be Questioned I’m not at all impressed. First I’ll point out the following notes:

Wayne now says the media is trying to hide a dirty secret that there are violent video games. He highlights a game called Kindergarten Killers that’s been online for 10 years.

Now he’s talking hurricanes and natural disasters. He then cites music videos that show violence – but who is airing music videos these days? He says that this stuff is the worst form of pornography.

He says that these issues bring cruelty into homes. He says that kids witness 16,000 murders in media by the time they reach 18. He says that the media is to blame.

Is this what the NRA has resorted to? They’re seriously trying to imply violent video games and media is, at least partially, responsible for the real violence we experience? Blaming violent media has been a favorite pass time for many groups over the ages but the simply fact is such blame assumes individuals are incapable of separating fiction from reality. I grew up playing violent video games, watching violent movies and televisions shows, and listening to violent metal yet I have never initiated violence against another human being. This is because I understand the difference between fiction and reality, as do most people. Blaming violent video games for real world violence pissed me off when I was a gamer and still pisses me off today. I’m not surprised to hear LaPierre trying to find something, anything, to blame but he should have focused his blame on issues that can actually lead to violence.

NRA, as the top instructor, is highlighting their law enforcement training programs and offering them to communities. He notes that NRA did use these training programs to help in WWII. He says they are developing a new model call National School Shield. It’s going to focus on many facets – access to schools and teacher training.

They have tapped former Rep. Asa Hutchinson to lead the National School Shield. NRA will pay for it. Schools get it free of charge. No money required by schools or communities to get the materials to get them talking about how to secure their school.

Wayne notes that we should be securing our schools at least as much as sports stadiums.

This concerns me as well. Securing schools as much as sports stadiums requires making schools even more like prisons than they already are. Many major stadiums have metal detectors, cameras everywhere, and guards performing pat downs on those entering the venue. Since stadiums are private institutions I don’t care how they run their operations. In his apparently desperate attempt to the Connecticut shooting on something LaPierre hasn’t considered the consequences of making schools more like prison. If he believes violent media causes violence in society then submitting children to prison style security is likely to make them more subservient to the state. As the state has a vested interest in disarm the populace it would seem counterproductive to the goal of protecting gun rights to instill even more obedience into today’s youth. Maintaining gun rights requires a populace that will stand up to the police state, not submit to it. Having children go through metal detectors, submit to searches of their persons and belongings, and being under the constant eye of Big Brother can only instill authoritarianism, which directly opposes the stated goals of the NRA.

I don’t want to spend all of my time lambasting the NRA without pointing at the conduct of gun control advocates. For some time now gun control advocates have been demanding a conversation about gun. Now that we’re having that conversation how do you think they’re conducting themselves? I’ll let you be the judge:

We have a Code Pink infiltrator getting in the way of Wayne. The Code Pink protestor is getting more attention since he’s being allowed to scream. The security didn’t remove the guy early enough.

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Another Code Pink protester with credentials. She started screaming from the beginning. Now the media is interrupting Wayne on the protests. And he then starts attacking the media again. This is clearly a speech meant for NRA members & gun owners who support the policies of NRA members.

When they said conversation they must have meant a platform from which they could make their demands to a sizable audience while silencing all opposition. Advocates of gun rights have at least, for the most part, conducted themselves in a professional manner and have given gun control advocates the ability to speak their part unmolested. It’s too bad they won’t show us the same amount of respect.

I think the conduct of gun control advocates compared to the conduct of gun rights activists speaks volumes. The goals of gun control advocates are authoritarian in nature. They want to utilize the state’s capacity for violence to disarm non-state entities. Gun control advocates claim to desire peace but rely on the threat and use of violence against gun owners, whether they’ve done something wrong or not. Meanwhile the desires of gun rights advocates are the opposite. Instead of demanding authoritarian violence be initiated against nonviolent individuals gun rights advocates want individuals to go about their business peacefully. Those of us who advocate gun rights oppose punishing innocent people. We believe punishment should be reserved exclusively for those who have done wrong. This stark difference manifestes itself in the strategies used by each side. Gun control advocates attempt to silence any opposition, which is a very authoritarian tactic. Gun rights activists allow their opposition to speak and rely on argumentation, a very libertarian tactic. One side wants to control you while the other side wants you to be in control.

Even though I don’t like what the NRA said at their conference they at least conducted themselves in a professional manner. They waited one week before saying anything while gun control organizations moved in immediately to exploit the tragedy while it was still fresh. The NRA allowed gun control organizations to say their piece without interruption while gun control advocates attempted to shout down the NRA. In my opinion the most notable thing about this news conference wasn’t what was said by the NRA, it was what the gun control advocates did in an attempt to silence their opposition.

Written by Christopher Burg

December 21st, 2012 at 6:00 pm

Panic Buying in the Twin Cities

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Last night I went to a couple of gun stores and was able to view the panic buying first hand. The first gun store I stopped at was the newly reopened GunStop in Minnetonka. There were a couple of customers in there but it wasn’t as crazy as I had expected. GunStop still had some Colt ARs in stock, likely because they are extremely expensive ARs (which is why I don’t have a Colt). There were no AK pattern rifles. Overall it didn’t seem that out of hand there.

The second gun store I stopped at was Cabela’s in Rogers. That place was a zoo. There were likely 10 to 20 people waiting in line for their National Instant Criminal Background System (NICS) check and at least another 10 to 20 looking at the guns. All of the modern semi-automatic rifles were sold out as were the standard capacity magazines. Cabela’s was raking in the money.

I was going to stop at Gander Mountain in Maple Grove but they apparently closed sometime between last night and the three or so years it’s been since I worked in the area. Too bad for them, if they were still open they would be making bank right now. In fact they could probably get away with inflating their already overinflated prices.

Seeing all of those people buying guns made me smile. My girlfriend is likely annoyed because she has been planning to pick up an AR for some time now but I take solace in knowing all of those guns are out there. Even if an “assault weapon” ban goes through the market will be flooded with rifles and magazines. Prices will go up, that’s beyond a doubt, but things will be available so long as the state doesn’t try to ban currently owned rifles and magazines (in which case I will simply say come and take them). Seeing record sales has to piss the gun control advocates off.

Written by Christopher Burg

December 21st, 2012 at 12:00 pm

When a Plan Falls Apart

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I logged onto the British Broadcasting Corporation’s (BBC) news site expecting to see another feature article relating to gun control. Instead I was greeted with this story:

US Republicans have cancelled a vote in Congress on tax rises they hoped would help to avert a so-called fiscal cliff.

They pulled the vote after failing to get enough support for the bill, labelled “Plan B”, which would raise taxes on earnings above $1m (£614,000).

The shooting in Connecticut was probably seen as a blessing by the politicians in Washington DC who have been in the spotlight for weeks because of this so-called fiscal cliff fiasco. After the shooting all news outlets were covering that and urging more gun control legislation. Apparently people have tired of the Connecticut shooting already (it has gotten to the traditional one week shelf life for news stories) because news stations are starting to pick their coverage of the fiscal cliff fiasco up again. I guess the politician’s plan to sweep this fiscal cliff mess under the rug and vote something through clandestinely didn’t pan out so well.

Written by Christopher Burg

December 21st, 2012 at 11:30 am