From The Burning Platform via The Lonely Libertarian
From The Burning Platform via The Lonely Libertarian
Thomas Sowell was the smartest professor I had in my four years at UCLA. Here he deplores the movement of decisions from private and voluntary to government and coerced. From Sowell at townhall.com:
Sometimes life forces us to make decisions, even when we don’t have enough information to know how the decision will turn out. The risks may be even greater when people make decisions for other people. Yet there are some who are not only willing, but eager, to take decisions away from those who are directly affected.
Something as personal as what doctor we want to go to has been taken out of our hands by ObamaCare. What job offer, at what pay rate, someone wants to accept has been taken out of their hands by minimum wage laws.
Sick people who are dying are prevented from trying a medication that has not yet completed all the long years of tests required by federal regulations — even if the medication has been used for years in other countries without ill effects.
One by one, innumerable decisions have been taken out of the hands of those directly affected. This is not just something that has happened. It is a central part of the agenda of the political left, even though they describe what they are doing in terms of the bad things they claim to be preventing and the good things they claim to be creating.
Minimum wage laws are described as preventing workers from being “exploited” by employers who pay less than what third parties want them to pay. But would people accept wages that third parties don’t like if there were better alternatives available?
To continue reading: The Left’s Gambles
The gun control debate illustrates perfectly the yawning cultural chasm. From Fred Reed on a guest post at theburningplatform.com:
Since Hillary has presumably gone to a home for used basilisks, we will perhaps hear less about gun control for a bit. As in, maybe, eight years.
The unending drive to outlaw firearms remains fascinating in various ways, first in that it represents a desire for conclusive abandonment of constitutional government. This is far along in other spheres–jury trial, speedy trial, jury of peers, declaration of war, warrantless search. Recently we have had a clear intention by a major party simply to ignore such constitutional provisions as it finds inconvenient.
Of course many of their voters couldn’t name two rights guaranteed by the First Amendment–surreys show that white college graduates cannot–and a substantial portion can’t read. Constitutional government requires an informed public. America doesn’t have one.
The orators profess to believe that banning guns will end murder. The actual effects of gun control are very different. This is a matter of observation, and thus has no place in political discussion. Just for the hell of it–it will make no difference–let’s actually look at the question.
The two most heavily armed countries in the world are (still, I think) Israel and Switzerland. In Switzerland, men of military age are (still, I think) required to keep an assault rifle and ammunition in their homes, and Israelis are similarly armed because, having enemies on their borders, they need to be able to mobilize rapidly.
In both countries murders by armed citizens are essentially nonexistent. By contrast, Mexico has strict gun control. Does anyone get shot in Mexico?
To continue reading: Gun Control: Hawglegs and Hawgwash
There’s an old law school adage: when you don’t have the facts, pound on the law; when you don’t have the law, pound on the facts, and when you don’t have the facts or the law, pound on the table. Gun-control advocates don’t have facts, the law (2nd Amendment), or anything else, so they pound the table with spurious arguments, dubious statistics, and when nothing else is available, outright lies. From Ryan McMaken at mises.org:
There’s been little talk of gun control this presidential election cycle, although state-level proposals continue to make it onto state ballots.
Gun control positions have come down along the usual partisan lines. It was clear from Clinton’s comments in the final presidential debate, for example, that she desires greater restrictions on access to firearms for private citizens. She expressed no such caution about weaponry carried by government employees, of course.
While the candidates have declined to make gun control a central issue in the campaign, mainstream media outlets, academics, and pundits continue to press for greater government restrictions and prohibitions on firearms access for private citizens. Meanwhile, of course, government agencies continue to purchase more powerful and more deadly weaponry.
To keep pressing the issue of gun control, it is necessary for advocates to push a narrative in which crime is especially bad, and in which the United States is somehow unique in the world in terms of crime. The actual historical data often contradicts their claims, however, so in order to push their narrative with greater gusto, advocates for gun control employ several different sleight-of-hand rhetorical tricks.
Number One: Imply that Crime Is Increasing
First among these are repeated hints that crime, especially homicide, is becoming worse. This has been especially effective in pushing the idea that homicide is now more common every time a mass shooting takes place.
In reality, of course, homicide rates in in the United States in 2014 were at a 51-year low. They increased from 2014 to 2015, but remained near a 50-year low, and near 1950s levels, which are recognized as an especially un-homicidal period in US history.
Moreover, homicide rates were cut in half from the 1990s to today, in spite of the fact that guns were being purchased in larger and larger numbers over the period.
Obviously, this doesn’t translate well into a pro-gun-control talking point. So, in order to make the case for “increasing” crime, gun-control advocates will take a very short-term time horizon (often of one-year) to create the impression that there is an established trend of increasing crime. For example, homicide did indeed increase from 2014 to 2015, but the longer-term trend is something else entirely. In this report, for example, the authors breathlessly report raw numbers of people killed while conveniently ignoring both historical context and the fact that the United States contains 320,000,000 people. When these statistics are viewed in light of a 20-year trend or as a proportion of the full population, the facts take on a very different meaning.
The key here is to ignore any time horizon beyond the immediate past, since any look at trends since the 1970s would, of course, show that homicides in the United States are in steep decline.
To continue reading: 5 Tricks Gun-Control Advocates Play
Preventing law-abiding citizens from owning and carrying guns for their own defense increases rather than decreases gun violence. From Tyler Durden at zerohedge.com:
In continued defiance of the Democrat narrative calling for stricter gun laws, Chicago’s homicide problem just keeps getting worse despite gun laws that are already among the most restrictive in the country. If fact, even the New York Times described Chicago’s gun laws as some of the “toughest restrictions,” saying:
Not a single gun shop can be found in this city because they are outlawed. Handguns were banned in Chicago for decades, too, until 2010, when the United States Supreme Court ruled that was going too far, leading city leaders to settle for restrictions some describe as the closest they could get legally to a ban without a ban. Despite a continuing legal fight, Illinois remains the only state in the nation with no provision to let private citizens carry guns in public.
Data compiled the Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute revealed that homicide rates in Chicago increased to 18.81 per 100,000 in 2015 vs. 17.64 in 2010, a 7% increase. That’s compared to a 6% decline for the United States overall for the same period and over 4x the national average. In fact, at 18.81 homicides per 100,000, Chicago would be ranked as the 201st most dangerous country out of the 218 countries tracked by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.
Perhaps even more shocking is the disparity in homicide rates by ethnicity. African American homicides increased 19% between 2010 and 2015 vs. 8% for Caucasians and a 2% decline for Latinos. Data revealed that African American homicide rates were eight times higher than Caucasians in 2005, 16 times higher in 2010, and 18 times higher in 2015.
Homicide rates were the highest among young people with the highest rates experience among 20-24 year olds at 64.28, a 48% increase in 5 years.
Finally, despite some of the most restrictive gun laws in the country, 87% of homicides were committed with firearms, up from 79% in 2010. So how could the city that has the toughest gun laws in the country, laws described as the “closest they could get legally to a ban without a ban,” also have some of the highest gun-related homicide rates? Could it be, that criminals looking to use weapons for violence have a lower propensity to follow laws and that by banning guns you’re really just taking them out of the hands of law-abiding citizens that wouldn’t have used them for violence anyway? Just a thought.
Hillary is a gun controller. Trump is not. From Eric Peters via a guest post at theburningplatform.com:
Voting against Hillary.
You may have heard that a California appellate court (see below) has ruled in favor of California laws that give government bureaucrats the power to deny citizens the right to carry a concealed weapon unless they show “good cause.” This “good cause” to be defined by the government bureaucrats and which definition does not include ordinary self-defense.
The bureaucrats use the “good cause” verbiage to effectively outlaw concealed carry (and thus, armed self-defense outside the home) for ordinary citizens.
It is the polar opposite of “shall issue” requirements (as in my state, VA) which compel the government to issue a permit to any citizen who applies, who has not been convicted of a felony.
This case will almost certainly become a Supreme Court case – and in that case, it will decide national policy regarding concealed carry.
And, perhaps more.
If Hillary becomes Dear Leader, she will almost certainly appoint at least two and likely three new “justices,” all of whom will be (like her) very much interested in “sensible gun control.” Which (if you need me to translate) means: No guns for you.
It is a certainty that a Hillary Court will rule in favor of the appellate court. Which will result in more states enacting “good cause” requirements and possibly rescinding existing “shall issue” requirements and quite possibly concealed carry and open carry altogether.
Except, of course, for the Hero Class.
And the criminal class.
Or are you among the Elio who believe that criminals obey laws?
Again, this is a point of clear distinction between the two alternatives we are presented with. Neither are my preference, but the ice cold truth is that one of these two is going to be president.
There is no third option.
The choice we are confronted with, therefore, is either the absolute certainty of determined attempts to severely abridge our right to self defense, with a strong probability that these will succeed as a result of a fuhrerbefehl (executive order) outlawing possession of “assault weapons,” certain calibers of ammunition, heavy taxes on ammunition, mandatory gun insurance (to make owning a gun onerous, financially) and so on – or via a Supreme Court ruling with the same effect.
As opposed to at least a chance those things won’t happen if Trump defeats her.
Trump may simply be making the necessary noises to assuage his supporters, but he would have to go back on numerous public utterances he has made decrying “gun control” and in support of the Second Amendment.
I grant that he might.
But with Hillary, we know.
If the choice is between metastasizing cancer (Hillary) and a localized case of hemorrhoids… the choice seems pretty clear.
To continue reading: Another Reason To Consider…
Orlando is an argument for gun availability among law abiding citizens, not gun control. From Bill Buppert at zerogov.com, via theburningplatform.com:
A nightclub was attacked in Orlando, FL this morning leaving nearly 53 dead and a hundred injured, who knows what these figures will be in the next week. One man with a gun(s) did this. Just one.
It just so happened to be a gay club. But it could have been an octogenarian bingo party or teen rave, the venue may have relevance if it turns out the shooter was motivated by some variation on a human software virus called religion.
I despise analysis of news cycles if they are less than 72 hours old because the facts are fluid and the local authorities are still floating their interpretation of events to benefit their agenda with their media lapdogs in tow.
Here’s what we know and this is subject to change.
Omar Mateen is an American citizen born in New York in 1986 to Afghan parents with a FL issued Concealed Carry Permit and a “guard card” for security guards in the same state. He has been investigated by the FBI an indeterminate number of times. Wait for the authorities to start backtracking and attempting to cook up stories to explain all of the events that led him to legally purchase an handgun and long gun in the past few days.
And a member of the Democratic Party.
I am linking to the National Parrot Radio site to assure the readers that I am being fair and balanced. NPR will broadcast what the government tells them to much like Tokyo Rose (Iva Toguri), Fred Kaltenbach and Axis Sally (Mildred Gillars) during the War to Save Josef Stalin. Whatever swill you hear will be sure to twist the facts and narrative to advance forward the gun prohibitionist standard.
Not only was it a gun-free restriction zone in the club leaving all the patrons unarmed, much like the popular free-fire zones like government buildings and schools but it apparently had an off-duty Orlando Sheriff’s Deputy in the club. If he is anything like his brethren on the street, he was most likely conveniently away during the shooting to avoid any harm to himself characteristic of the cowardly mindset that informs most police behavior in America today.
I’m waiting for the usual suspects to crawl out of their gutters and start mewling and caterwauling for common sense weapons control and more bans because prohibition and heavy regulation has worked out so well for the rest of the pathologies the government has thought so vital like commerce, illegal vegetation, food and drugs. The whole raft of wildly successful program sponsored by your betters in Mordor on the Potomac to improve everyone’s quality of life and keep us safe.
The cold hard fact is that if more than one person had a gun, this murderer would literally been stopped dead in his tracks but the government will do everything it can to dispel that notion and derail that narrative because once people realize that the trillions stolen from them yearly doesn’t even assure something as basic as the ability to survive an attack, the man behind the curtain quickly reveals what a shabby charlatan he is.
To continue reading: Another Government Sponsored Abattoir