Friday, December 30, 2005

Common Dreams: Liberals and The War

Common Dreams | News & Views

Here's a website that won't appear on my blogroll.

Common Dreams is a quasi-news website which bills itself as "Breaking News & Views for the Progressive Community". This Radical Liberal Sump-tank starts off comparing GW Bush with RM Nixon, and 'moves on' to a call for "... the urgent release of peace activists held in Iraq". (A look at the signatories of this petition reveals a cross-section of liberal wacko's including Noam Chomsky, Cindy Sheehan, the parents of Rachael Corrie, Ralph Nader, the 'Reverand' . . . former 'Father' . . . Daniel Berrigan, and "Mazin Qumsiyeh, author, Sharing the Land Of Canaan, board member US Campaign to End the Occupation". Just the Band of Brothers to put America Last.)

No, the Christian Peacemaker Teams were not kidnapped by the Americans, but by the Iraqi 'insurgents' (read: terrorists) against whom we are fighting. But it's obvious that CPT and Common Dreams (and the signatories of the petition) are willing to make America the villain of this peace.

Another of its current articles is titled "Show's Not So 'Purrfect' for Female Forces in Iraq". This reports the outrage of one Sharon Kibiloski, an Air Force Captain stationed in Iraq, and she's "fighting mad" because the US Army brought in a 'scantily clad female troup for a two-week tour in Kuwait and Iraq".

Her point?

"The show only appeals to men, and in my mind has the potential to increase sexual advances toward female soldiers afterward," Kibiloski said in e-mails and reiterated in a telephone interview. "To me, if the military really cared about sexual harassment, they would not sponsor such a show."
Uh, excuse me. For years, the US Military has preferred NOT to station women in combat zones, and the women who wanted to BE in combat zones were strident in their claim that they could do the job as well as men, and anyone who thinks this would be a problem must be some kind of misogynistic Neanderthal. To illustrate this, the position of the National Organization of Women (NOW), a notorious Liberal 'feminist' movement, in 1990 included the statement that
the exclusion of women from combat in the modern military is a fraud only to perpetuate a second class status of women in the military
Now that women are IN a combat zone, they have started to make a few changes. Batting her eyes at the moon, Captain Kibiloski demonstrates the worst of all possible worlds when this Air Force officer complains that another service brings in what is essentially the 21st Century's version of a USO show. The good captain was too young to have attended any of Bob Hope's shows, but I wonder what she would have thought about The Gold Diggers, "a troupe of beautiful, scantily clad girls" who were featured in his 1969 Christmas show in Camp Eagle, Vietnam.

This is just one more Liberal Cause intended to undermine the military for the sake of Political Correctness. 'Scantily clad girls' are, admittedly, 'a guy thing'. Well, so is Military Service and for reasons which are obvious to almost everyone.

Yet another article discusses a Colorado couple's decision not to pay the fifty-cent federal excise tax on their phone bill. While I have no objection to their petty tax revolt, I wonder whether they seriously believe that this is a legitimate protest against the war in Iraq, or a grand-standing hype given too much credence by Common Dreams and the originating news source, the Denver Post.

Most of the articles in Common Dreams mix news and politics with an implied slant to the far left. Their dreams are certainly 'progressive' in the sense of those Liberals who are not comfortable to be identified as such and have adopted the word 'Progressive' in preference.

Perhaps this demonstrates that they at least have a sense of shame. And well they should.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Canadian Cluebat 2: Toronto

The Globe and Mail: Bystanders gunned down on busy Toronto street

On the Day after Christmas (known as "Boxing Day" in the UK and former colonies), a 15 year-old girl was gunned down in a busy Toronto, Canada mall.

Two "groups"of "youths in their late teens and early twenties" (Read: thugs or gangbangers if you're American, yobs in the UK) got into a fight and somebody pulled a gun. Probably more than one gun was involved, because 6 people were wounded, and at the end Jane Creba lay dead on the street.

This is a terrible thing to happen, and we grieve for the Creba family. We all agree that Something Ought To Be Done about this, but what?

Straight up, we already know that the guns were illegally carried. We've already talked about Canada's ultra-expensive, ultra-not-working gun laws. In fact, we've even talked about 'technologically feasible' gadgets which keep people from suing someone else's gun.

Just to make my point painfully obvious, we have seen that making guns illegal doesn't get them off the street; it just gets them out of the hands of law-abiding citizens who carry them for self-defensive purposes. The people who want to hoo-rah the down and raise hell, the people who are looking for an escuse to go out and shoot other people; those people already have their guns, and they're using them. They don't CARE that it's illegal to have a gun. They'll get them somewhere. (Possibly more on that later)

The rest of Canada . . . is a target. Also known as an "Innocent Bystander", in situations such as this.

Got it? Good.

Back to the story.

The Mayor of Toronto, Dave Miller, is shocked, SHOCKED!, that people in his town are carrying guns and these people ( say . . . "groups of youths in their late teens and early twenties") are using their guns to shoot each other and Innocent Bystanders.

The Prime Minister . . . well, read it in the original:

Prime Minister Paul Martin offered his condolences to the family of the victim in a statement Tuesday, saying he was "horrified" by the shootings.

"The taking of innocent young life is always an outrage, but doubly so when it occurs during a season which is dedicated to celebrating the joys of family and peace.

"What we saw yesterday is a stark reminder of the challenge that governments, police forces and communities face to ensure that Canadian cities do not descend into the kind of rampant gun violence we have seen elsewhere," he said.


Oh, yeah. I get it. You mean, as in the United States, your churlish neighbor to the South. Gun violence, rampant. You want to avoid that, right?

Well, here's a clue. Your plan, whatever it is (confiscation), isn't working.

The Toronto Official Police Spokesman had something interesting to say:

"I think it's a day that Toronto has finally lost its innocence," Toronto Police spokesman Det. Sgt. Savas Kyriacou said at a news conference Tuesday. "It was a tragic loss and a tragic day."
I agree that it was a tragic loss, and a tragic day. But Detective Sergeant Kyriacou, how could you not be aware of the previous "Tragic Days" which Toronto experienced this year?

We've just been looking at the Globe and Mail. There are other news sources available, and some of them have been paying more attention to the "Tragic Day in Toronto" count than you seem to be.

The Canada Free Press ("Canada's Fastest Growing Independent News Source') will give you a rundown, if you wish:

On December 1, Toronto were looking for two men who killed a 25-year-old man in a car parking lot. This was the 74th murder in Toronto for 2005, and the 50th shooting death.

During the period December 3 thru December 27, there were ten other shooting incidents in Toronto. A couple of these incidents resulted in 'no injuries' (that they know of), but the box score by my count is:
Wounded: 11
Dead: 2

I repeat, this is JUST for the last 10 shooting incidents AFTER December 1, and in two of them there were no injuries reported.

I hardly think that the Boxing Day (December 26) shooting was the single incident in which Toronto "lost its innocence". That would be like trying to pin down the day when Heidi Fleiss lost her innocence.


The hat-tip to Hal Lindsey ( a columnist who I don't often read ) of WorldNet Dailey is in order. He posted a column today on this subject, and it piqued my interest to the point where I did a little background digging of my own. The results you see above.

The one point which Lindsey made, and which I won't try to steal because he did such a nice job of fisking it, is that . . .

According to Toronto's mayor, Toronto's gun problem is Uncle Sam's fault. It seems – gasp! – that criminals aren't obeying the gun ban. They are going to the United States and smuggling guns back into Canada. (Yes, Canada also has a law against smuggling – but that's not important. Just ask the Canadians.)
Lindsey's coup de grace:

Let's see if I am following this correctly. I don't want to misunderstand. There are poor young people suffering discrimination in Toronto whose social condition is so bleak they will even resort leaving the country to get a gun they can smuggle back so they can shoot up Toronto ...and that is America's fault?

Sure is, says Canada's prime minister, Paul Martin. Martin says half the gun crimes in Canada involve guns smuggled in from the United States. Indeed, Martin said he raised the "smuggling problem" with Condi Rice when she visited in October.

That must have been interesting. "Madame Secretary, Canadians are breaking Canadian smuggling laws and we are powerless to prevent it. What does the United States propose to do to solve our border inspection problems?"

Okay, before this gets too long (or "Geek Length", as we here in Geekistan like to say), let's look at what a select group of Canadians have to say about the "Gun Violence Problem in Toronto". To do that, I'll just cite the folks who commented in the "Globe and Mail" article. (Okay, so it's going into Geek Length" territory. If it bothers you, stop reading. )

Testament Number One:

Paul Thompson from Cheongju City Korea, Canada writes: Sir: Some people have commented on the malevolent influence of such things as "gangsta"-glorifying hip-hop music and films such as Four Brothers on the problem of gun violence. Personally, I don't think there is anything wrong with listening to or watching such junk as long as you don't ACT on it! I recall watching a movie like Bonnie and Clyde but I don't remember wanting to rob banks or shoot people afterwards. Of course, given how that movie ended, one could argue that it didn't glorify violence at all. My point is that if we can find out what it is that makes certain people act on the violent messages they may get from the media, we will have solved at least one piece of the puzzle. Also, I find it quite nauseating to hear so-called "conservatives" blaming liberal or socialist policies for this problem when a redneck-infested place like Texas has a gun violence problem that dwarfs ours.
"Cheongju City Korea, Canada"? I had no IDEA that Canada was THAT multicultural!
Paul may have a point, no matter how vapid he sounds, in suggesting that the problem may have something to do with "people". He's not talking about GUNS as the cause of Gun Violence, he's talking about "People".

Unfortunately, he gives away his Moral High Ground when he resorts to name calling. "so-called "conservatives"" and "redneck-infested place like Texas" are high on my twit-filter rules list, and it should be on yours. My guess: Paul has never met a REAL Conservative, and he has never been to Texas. (However, he probably has a lot of personal experience with 'infestation' based on his apparent fondness for "liberal or socialist policies".)

Testament Number Two:

A Fraser from Canada writes:

Dennis Ergas, thank you for your insightful comments. I do not agree that locking all the criminals up solves anything. Look at the US, which has the highest rate of incarceration per capita in the industrialized world, yet still has higher per capita murder rates than Canada.

There has to be a multi-pronged approach to this issue.

Fraser (he isn't from Seattle, is he?) has a fine appreciation for "Dennis Ergas". Who is that? I googled the name, and found a sergeant (66-67) in the 27th Infantry Regiment ("The Wolfhounds") in the 25th Infantry Division ("Tropical Lightning", home station Scofield Barracks in Hawaii) of the United States Army. I served in that division in 1970, in Vietnam, and I never met Dennis Ergas. Guess I didn't get around much.

But I digress. I'm in good company, because Fraser digresses, too. That's hard to do, because he never establishes a point from which he may digress. He doesn't seem to favor locking up criminals, he's very big on "per capita" statistics (without any supporting citations) and is searching for a 'multi-pronged approach'. I don't know what that is, but I'm going to add that phrase to my Twit-Filter immediately. ("Per Capita" is already in there!)

Testament Number Three:
Wilf Kruggel from Onoway, Canada writes: I've said it for years and I'll say it as often as it needs to be said, get the "cops" out of the ditches looking like coyotes hunting for that unsuspecting speeder or the one that doesn't come to a complete stop at a stop sign and put these very same highly trained cops dealing with the various gangs. The canadian police chiefs said several years ago that they are losing the fight to stop organized gangs. How long is it going to take before our idle politicians do something. instead of putting these crimminals into "fivestar hotels for life, say to "hell" with these human rights activists and put the criminals back into chaingangs and at the end of the day give them a lash or two, just as a reminder that what they did was seriously wrong. Talking to people in the middle East that had the lash, they weren't going for another round. That's what's needed in our justice system, "deterrants", not "coddling". I keep saying that we have to get away from this "socialist" mentality because that's what is the sole cause of our social problems. If nothing is done, people will just keep blowing each others "cans" off.
I'm a little intimidated by this. Wilf seems not to be a Fellow Traveler of Fraser. Won't that undermine Fraser's self-image?

Probably; and it might be a refreshing moment for Fraser, if he ever noticed it.

Wilf has take a step in the right direction; at least he doesn't seem to advocate patting Larry the Yob on the bum and sending him back out into the street to play. And he certainly agrees with me (always a virtue) by agreeing the Something Must Be Done.

But I'm afraid he's just looking a peneological solution (can I say that?).

Testament Number Four:

dave bussiere from Canada writes: This is a brutal event.
We can blame the US. We can blame immigration. But that would be naive.
The US didn't do this....some of our teens did this.
Immigration didn't do this...though maybe some immigrants did....and maybe some locally-born jerks.
I am not pro-gun.....but this is not a result of legal gun purchases by average Canadians. This is a sign of the times.
Awwww . . . shucks. If it weren't for the honor, I would have to decline the honor. "We can blame it on the US", dave says, and then he rejects the proposition entirely.

'dave' (I KNOW he has a Shift Key!) is hot on the trail, but he is perhaps only mildly in error when he says "some of our teens did this". Not. It wasn't "some of our teens", it was our (their) society which allows teens to grow up without knowing how to act. Nothing against the Canadians; we do the same thing in the US, too. dave, you're getting warmer! Keep up the good work, and keep posting.

Testament Number Five:

Jason Varmazis from Toronto, Canada writes: A child was killed on the streets of Toronto while shopping with her
parents in the late afternoon. If there ever was a wakeup call that we
must take action to address the issue of gun violence, this it.

Action is not targetting certain immigrant groups, bringing back the
death penalty, or other forms of non-judicial punishment for criminals.
And it is not another registry or gun control programme from our
corrupt and inept federal government.

Our civilized, just socitey (sic) is under attack. And we must effectively
defend her in a civilized and just manner. The will to accomplish this
is actually universal, regardless of our individual politics.

Laws concerning gun crimes must be toughened and strictly enforced.
Programmes must be funded and implemented to find and remove the
illegal guns out there. The police should put their best and brightest
on their gun removal teams. Also, you can pay with money or you can pay
with blood. Rewards for turning in illegal weapons (no questions asked)
and turning in gun offenders is money well spent. If people won't
volunteer information, it is unfortunate, but we will obviously have to
pay them for results.

And for those talking about social programmes for disadvantaged youth.
Such programmes should be funded because they will help willing
disadvantaged youth reach their full potential as adult citizens. And
that is good and just. But it won't turn around some gang banger who
lights up his weapon on a crowded street. We need tough courts and jail
for these individuals.
Darn it, Jason starts out like gang-busters (pardon the expression) in the first three paragraphs, and then he fades fast.

  1. Something Must Be Done. A no-brainer, but who am I to complain?
  2. Laws don't work. Another no-brainer, and I agree.
  3. This is a societal problem. Politics don't work. Doing good, Jason!
  4. We have to enforce our laws. What happened to Paragraph 2?
  5. Government can fund programs, and if the kids don't respond . . . hang 'em high!

No. You can't solve 'gun violence' by passing more laws, or by 'more strictly enforcing' existing laws. That has already been tried. It doesn't work.

The Government has done everything it can, which essentially consists of passing laws and throwing money at the problem. You can see where that gets us. (Here I'm talking about Canada, the US, UK, France and her riots which are NOT caused by Muslims, Holland with her street executions which are NOT caused by Muslims, etc.)

You want the answer in the simplest possible terms? I'll give you a term in two words, and you'll laugh because it is such an out-of-date concept:

Nuclear Families.

That's right. It's not a matter of governmental programs or federal/state/local laws. It's not even a matter of any religious concept such as the Ten Commandments (which just happens to be the simplest, most concise and easiest-to-follow Handbook for Life which was ever composed), although religion can be one of the more powerful tools for raising a child to be a peaceful, law-abiding, responsible, respectful and respected adult.

Here's the basic scenario:

A man and a woman get together, they make a pact to cleave to each other and forsake all others for the sake of their own children. That's their responsibility: their children.

They provide the children a good, stable home. They also provide instruction on how the children should live. They serve as role models, which only means they are an example of the kind of people that the children should attempt to emulate when they reach their own adulthood.

They love their children, and they teach them. They don't keep their children safe, warm, well-fed, clothed and happy because there's a law saying they have to, or because if the Social Worker comes around and finds they're living in a pig-sty, the Department of Human Services may cut of the Welfare Check.

At least one parent brings in an income, at least one parent provides a save and nurturing home environment. The way this is accomplished may vary according to circumstances, but that's a basic minimum.

Little Johnny isn't running around with a gang, because all of the other potention Homies are also in safe and nurturing environments. Have you ever read the studies of street gangs which state that for most of their members, that's the only family they have? Maybe you should, because that is the key to the answer.

This isn't stuff you learn in school. Teachers are there to teach you how to read and write and do ciphers. It's not THEIR job to teach them to get along with other people, or to know 'instinctively' the difference between right and wrong. It's your job.

Sometimes, you may learn part of it in a church. Even if you're not 'religious', you can see that religion is a way to live and it probably has a lot of practical lessons that will help you see the way to fulfill your obligation to your family.

This is the hardest possible way to resolve the problem of "gun violence". We've gone so far down the wrong road, we're in our umpteenth generation of people who believe that the Government (including schools, and even churches) should be responsible for removing the threat of violence -- any violence -- from our culture.

We have to fix the parents, so they can fix the children. That means it's a family problem, and they only way the family can function is if they REMAIN a family where each member is responsible to every other member of the family.

By the way, I couched this essay in terms of Canadian Cluelessness. Apologies to our Canadian friends (and Australian, French, Deutch et al) if I seem to be singling you out. We're all in the same boat, we've all lost our way. It isn't a national problem, but all nations are struggling with it. Why isn't anybody listening to the people who are already pointing this out?

Because it's just too hard.

I never said it would be easy.

I just said it would work.

Less than 24 hours after I wrote this piece, I found an article about an assault in Milwaukee which illustrates almost every point.

MILWAUKEE - A prosecutor began reviewing possible charges Thursday against five juveniles in the brutal mob beating of a man yanked from his car while driving through a north side neighborhood. Two are 17 years old, two are 16 and one is 14, according to a police statement that did not give the genders of the suspects in the attack on Samuel McClain, a 50-year-old father of 12. Police continue to seek more suspects, the release said.

"I thought that the last time this happened in our community that people would wake up," Johnson said. "It's time for this to stop. Parents need to sit down and talk with their children about what's right and what's wrong."
("Johnson" is the wife of the victim in the beating)

State Rep. Leon Young, D-Milwaukee, said he plans to introduce a bill in the Legislature early next year that would toughen the penalties for those participating in group assaults. Young, a former Milwaukee police officer, started working with the department after several 2004 mob beatings.

The penalty enhancer would kick in when three or more people take part in violence against a person and would range from one extra year in prison to five, depending on the severity of the victim's injuries.

Locally, a group of City Council members said Thursday they will introduce an anti-gang ordinance that would allow police to ticket groups of people who loiter in a menacing fashion.

Sure, keep it up. Treat the symptoms, but not the cause.

Of course, it might have been worse. He might have been attacked by a gang of youthful Chihuahuas.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Cooper and Citizenship

Jeff Cooper's Commentaries

I've only just now referenced The Colonel's monthly offering, and I note that the version which 'popped up' is his November, 2005, commentaries.

This is, as usual, interesting and instructive. (Here is a comment on his September post, among other less pertinent offerings.)

The single most edifying entry was his Teddy Quote:

The following quotation from Theodore Roosevelt in 1907 is appropriate at this time:
"In the first place we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the man's becoming in very fact an American, and nothing but an American ... There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn't an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag, and this excludes the red flag, which symbolizes all wars against liberty and civilization, just as much as it excludes any foreign flag of a nation to which we are hostile ... We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language ... and we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people."

via Leon Flancher

I don't always agree with Col. Cooper, but I find myself marching in block-step with his approval of the thoughts of our mutual hero, Theodore Roosevelt.

Any man who wishes to immigrate to this great country is welcome, provided he is determined to become a citizen. He may come to my home, and I will feed him, clothe him, and welcome him as a Brother. Provided only that he embrace this land as his homeland and hold no other state above this nation.

But when a man comes to my home and partakes of the largesse available herein, yet maintains a higher allegiance to his origin, then I label him a curr, and a liar, and a traitor to his espoused convictions.

I have no use for a man who lies, or for a night-slinking backstabber who professes to be a friend even though he knows that he is not my friend.

He may swear allegiance to any state that he wishes, but as long as the country he calls 'home' is not this country, he may not partake of the advantages granted willingly by THIS country.

To do so is not only ignoble, but it is craven and cowardly. We have no need for foreign investment with a hidden agenda.

We have recently seen in France that the immigrants there are all too willing to go on the public dole as 'citizens', but they do not consider themselves citizens. They have no obligation to their adopted country, even though they use their supposed citizenship to their own advantage. At the same time , they destroy public property and undermine the public peace of their supposedly adopted country.

And here, in the land I was born in, I see foreigners who come here for the economic advantage who are unwilling to repay their debt by giving their allegience to their adopted land.

I see immigrants who, even when they go as far as to perform the legal qualifications to become citizens, still hold as their priority a religion which proposes that any perfidy is allowed as long as it permits them to attack their chosen country, even though they have seemingly adopted it as their own.

There are exceptions to this sad turn of events. There are immigrants who come to this country and truly adopt it as their new homeland, as their new homeland has adopted them. Again, I welcome them as Brothers.

Too often, though, we find that we have clasped a serpent to our breast. Is it so remarkable, then, that we resent immigrants who demonstrate no investiture in their new country and may even wish ill of us?

I can find no comfort in their espousal of their rights, when they do not acknowledge their obligations.

I wish them gone. All of them.

There is sufficient dishonesty in this country, among those of us who are legally here. We have no need of self-imported malcontents who suck at the public teat and only bite us in return.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Lies, Damned Lies, and Shooting Lies

Concealed Carry Response Time [Archive] - THR: "
A good shooter can draw and fire a double tap in less than a second... average one can do it in about 1.3 seconds... which is probably not fast enough if he is caught unaware... he will probably cap the ED, but will also probably get cut too. At this point the victim better shoot the ED to the ground, because that knife is awfully close and easy to use...even by a wounded ED."

I shoot in IPSC matches about 30 - 40 times a year . . . conservatively speaking, and I'm talking VERY conservative. I've been an IPSC competitor for over 20 years, and I currently shoot a Race Gun from a Race Holster, which means that I'm loaded, I have the fastest-draw holster I can find, and I'm READY to draw and engage the closest possible target as soon as the buzzer sounds. I probably start 240 - 250 stages every year, which means that I engage first-targets that many times a year, in live-fire, so I probably have a very good idea how long it takes me to engage a non-threatening target under the best possible conditions and under some (competitive, not life-threatening) circumstances.

Let's talk about the buzzer. I hear it every weekend, and when it goes off I'm aware that the shooting problem does not involve my possible demise. It's a shooting problem, not a self-defense situation. I expect it to go off within a couple of seconds of when it actually DOES go off, and there is no confusion involved; I know it's a signal that I WILL draw and start shooting. The target(s) are pre-defined, and I know that it's a shooting problem. I don't have to wonder if I should be required to draw and shoot, there are no ethical aspects to the situation that I have to consider. Essentially, it's a no-brainer.

My very best draw-time (hitting the A-zone of a cardboard IPSC target at 7 yards) is 0.85 seconds, and that's just with ONE shot. No double-tap involved, and my best double-tap time adds another 0.13 - 0.15 seconds to the equation. Best possible situation: a double-tape in over one second, and who knows where the heck the second shot went? Besides, I'm ready and I'm only shooting at cardboard.

This guy is talking about an "average shooter" who can double-tap an aggressor in 1.3 seconds.

Heck, if the target is at all difficult, I'm lucky if I can get my first shot off at that time, and the target is a piece of cardboard several steps away from me.

Put a defensive-carry gun and holster on my, and my draw/engagement time is going to double, at least. Chances are my first shot is going into the dirt closer to my feet than to the feet of my attacker. And I'm darned if I'm confident that my second shot will bite meat, because you see I'm accustomed to the characteristics of a competition race gun, not a clumsy clunky defense pistol.

All I'm saying is that if you read the Forums, you're likely to read a lot of opinions from people who are probably well-intentioned, but that doesn't mean that they know what they're talking about.

Sometimes that presents an unrealistically optimistic self-defense scenario, sometimes it's unrealistically pessimistic. It's a crap shoot. It's a box of chocolates, a la Forest Gump ("Life is like a box of chocolates: you never know what you're going to get.")

My advise is, don't pay any attention to the expectations propounded by people you don't know. In this case, you may read on and find that some of the best competitive shooters in the world (eg: Jerry Miculek) are saying "I just do not believe that anyone is going to be able to draw and fire in a second or second and a half under those conditions. I suspect 2 seconds would be a very good time."

Well, I think I would be very unlikely to draw and double-tap a target, any target let along an attacker, in less than two seconds. This presupposes that I was very much READY to repell an attacker, and frankly I think it would take most of us a couple of seconds to convince ourselves that we are actually being attacked.

So, while you are training diligently to defend yourself against a Lethal Force attack, remember that you are only human and thus subject to human frailties. IF you will train to defend yourself against attack, don't forget that movement is probably one of the best defenses against sudden, unexpected, violent attack.

Life isn't an IPSC match. You would not believe how daunting it can be to suddenly find yourself being aggressively attacked, with the range quickly shortened by your assailant. The skills you develop competing in IPSC matches, for example, will NOT serve you well against a personal assault by a determined, aggressive assailant.

How long, for example, will it take you to identify an assault when the assailant starts 30 yards from you, does not obviously show a weapon, and you don't know that YOU are the subject of the attack until it is (probably) too late ti attack?

Perhaps, if this is a concern, you should re-evaluate your training doctrine.

But you should never, NEVER, depend on your ability to respond to an attack in 1.3 seconds.

Geek Advice in how to handle this situation?

Don't ever get yourself in this situation.

The details of the solution are left as a problem for the student.

(I sure don't have the answer!)

No smoking at home

Smokers will be sent letters asking them not to light up for one hour before a council worker or health worker calls round as part of plans to protect public sector workers from the effects of passive smoking.

THE public are to be told not to smoke in their own homes as part of plans to protect public sector workers from the effect of passive smoking.

The move is the latest part of the Scottish Executive's ban on smoking in public places, which will come into force on 26 March next year.

Ministers have told councils, health boards and social work departments that they should compile a "smokers' map" of Scotland, focusing on those who regularly receive visits from officials and carers. This would identify individual households where a smoker is resident.

The smokers would then be sent letters asking them not to smoke for one hour before a council worker or health worker called round. Public bodies have also been advised to use the smokers' map to ensure that any workers who suffer from breathing problems are kept away from the homes of smokers.

But the Executive advice, which was issued to all councils, health boards and care service-providers yesterday, was derided as a "bureaucratic waste of money", and "politically correct nonsense".

There are tens of thousands of people who get visits from public sector workers at home. Many council house tenants receive official visitors for a whole variety of reasons; women with babies are visited by midwives and health visitors; the elderly and infirm often get called on by social workers and home helps; and the sick are visited by GPs.

I'm a smoker, and I'm outraged at this.

We can't' smoke in public places, and in some locales (such as my home town, Corvallis, Oregon) this includes not only bars but Public Parks.

I've posted before (and I'm too lazy too look up the reference) that at least one person has been sued to prevent him from smoking cigars on the balcony outside his own home.

Now the UK (those wonderful folks who have determined that only Criminals can own firearms for personal defense) has determined that State employees must be protected from the evil influence of the Demon Tobacco. If your own welfare state insists upon visiting you to determine whether you are a Worthy Person who is entitled to receive (mandatory) Public Assistance, you are constrained from smoking in the privacy of your own home during the period of time when the smoke may linger in your home . . . and therefore may endanger the health of the social worker who is expected to visit you.

What happens if the Nanny State Bumpkins decide upon an un-announced visit? They do this from time to time, you know, if you have been deemed worthy of such Special Attention. (That is, if you are suspected of Unacceptable Social Behavior, as defined by The State.)

The issue is not whether you should apply for benefits from The State, and thus are responsible for making every effort to present your home life-style in a manner which is acceptable to The State in order to encourage acceptance of a proposition which you have proposed.

Rather, it is whether The State can arbitrarily and unilaterally attempt to impose restrictions upon your lifestyle (unrelated to your personal habits), and whether they can use this as a springboard to be even more intrusive.

If you have never encountered the Socialist State, you may not be aware of the degree to which its minions are encouraged to infringe upon your personal freedoms.

Let's look at the question in a RKBA perspective:

We in the United States do not YET suffer such indignities as do our brothers in the United Kingdom, but let us suppose that this kind of intrusive surveillance is common 'here'.

If you are a FFL (Federal Firearms License) holder in the USA, and this law were enacted, if the BATFE (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives) scheduled the visitation of an agent to your tobacco shop, you would be constrained not only to cease smoking in your shop, but also to prevent your customers from smoking in you ('free smoking-zone') shop for at least one hour before the scheduled visitation from the BATFE. It would not only compromise your personal freedoms as a smoker, but also would impose unreasonable restrictions upon your right to do business.

To take it one step further, suppose you are a firearms dealer in a locale (increasingly rare!) which does not forbid smoking in your workplace. You would still be required to forbid both your customers and your employees, as well as yourself, from smoking within one hour of the SCHEDULED visit.

BTW, the Social Worker is not obliged to cleave to the announced schedule. If they don't show up, you must still have 'not smoked' for at least one hour before the SCHEDULED visit.

Is this intrusive? Yes, it is.

Is this unilateral and intrusive? Two more in the YES column.

Is it reasonable? Depends upon whether you are an individual citizen of a supposed free state, or a Social Worker. Believe me, the UK does not have the best interests of their citizens in mind when they impose this sort of legality upon their citizens.

This is just one more way in which a Socialist State can become more intrusive in the day-to-day life of their citizenry. They have no real concern about the well-being of their agents; Social Workers are a dime a dozen, and here I inflate the value of these predatory prostitutes.

No, they care not a whit about the health of their minions.

Instead, this is just one more way in which they can demonstrate that The State is more important than The Individual.

Is smoking such an important issue, to other than the 20% of any state which practices the Evil of Smoking?

No, but personal freedom IS more important than the excuse for imposing these regulations.

When you see these bureaucratic regulations imposed, you might consider that you are witness to another step up the gentle slope of Nanny State regulation of your personal freedom.

1984 is past, but "1984" as a concept is on a roll!

You're about to be rolled over. Don't let it happen without noticing that yet another of your personal freedoms . . . the freedom to live a private life . . . is being infringed upon.

2005 RKBA Blogmeat Wrapup

Ho Ho Ho!

Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year!

Since the end of the year is fast approaching, I've decided to include ONE more thematic 'blogmeat' post.

The theme is RKBA (mostly in America); the sub-theme is Victim-ocracy. It should be interesting to see how people are handling interpersonal relationships at the end of 2005. Maybe next year we'll run another similar post, and see if anything has changed.

Our first offering:


A 25-year-old man claiming to sell magazines in Mount Dora, Fla., was arrested for allegedly forcing his way into a woman's apartment and attacking her in front of her two children, according to a Local 6 News report.

  • Charles Hartman.
    Mount Dora police said Charles Hartman told the woman that he was selling magazines for his college so he could travel to Paris.Investigators said when Hartman realized the woman's husband was not home, he forced his way inside the apartment and attacked her while her children watched.

    The woman apparently overpowered Hartman and managed to chase him outside with a board and screamed for help, according to the report. Hartman was arrested late Wednesday.

    If this big goof had appeared at my house, I would have already had the board in hand before I opened the door. But that's just me. In other news, the Violence Policy Center has announced that you are 43 times more likely to be slap-sticked if you have a board in your home.


    Robbers mess with the wrong grandma

    INITIATIVE: Seward woman tracks thieves who boldly snatched her purse.

    A 55-year-old grandmother from Seward who had her purse snatched in the parking lot of the Dimond Boulevard Costco on Monday afternoon has taken it upon herself to "catch the twirps," she said.

    Rosie Szymanski, who came to Anchorage to celebrate Christmas with her 10-year-old grandson and other family members, said Tuesday that she has tracked the thieves to several places where they used her credit cards before she was able to cancel them. And she has obtained a videotape of what she believes are the young men using one of her cards at a McDonald's.

    Anchorage police are cautioning her to use care in her investigation.

    Szymanski said she was unloading Christmas presents into her Chevy Astro van when a young man shoved her and pinched her kidney-bean-shaped handbag from the shopping cart, she said.

    "They are lucky I didn't have my .45 automatic. I would have blasted them," said Szymanski.

    Now, Szymanski is piping mad and "in hot pursuit," she said. She has extended her trip and turned it into a hunt for the thieves, work that she says the police aren't doing fast enough.

    After she was robbed, Szymanski ran after the thief until she saw him jump into a maroon Jeep that had been waiting with the engine revving. The vehicle sped off, she said.

    "Maybe I'm a little older, a little fluffier, and he thought I wasn't going to chase him," she said. "But I did."

    The thieves got away with Szymanski's wallet, several hundred dollars in cash, and a lucky coin she had from her grandmother that she always carries with her, she said.

    On Tuesday, Syzmanski spent the day driving around Anchorage to the sites where her credit cards had been used, scribbling notes on a mini yellow legal pad, and taking down phone numbers.

    "I've been around the block a few times," she said. "These boys need to know there are consequences."

    Had these idiots read my November, 2005, post titled "Granny Has A Gun", the would have known better than to have attacked a grandmother. There's something particularly appealing about citizens who refuse to become victims. I'm hoping that Granny Szymanski starts carrying full-time. Our world would be a better one, if we had more grandmothers and fewer goblins.

    And if this keeps up, my wish will be fulfilled.

    In other news, VPC has just announced that you are 43 times more likely to be tracked to the ends of the earth if you have a grandmother in your home.

    An Obscure Case for Pick-up Truck Control

    I'm not sure what this means. You read it, you tell me:

    2 going to prison on charge of carjacking

    The Associated Press

    Two Hartsville men who pleaded guilty to federal carjacking charges in an incident in which a man was chained to a pickup truck and dragged through a field have been sentenced to prison.

    Kenneth Smith, 41, was sentenced to 14 years in prison Wednesday by U.S. District Judge R. Bryan Harwell. Lamont McKay, 27, was sentenced to seven years.

    Prosecutors sought the reduced sentence for McKay because they said he cooperated in the case.

    Each man had faced a maximum of 25 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

    The two men began arguing with the victim over a drug deal at a Darlington County store in January, then struck him in the head and robbed him, prosecutors said.

    The men forced the victim into his own pickup truck, ordered him to drive to a nearby field and made him take his clothes off, authorities said.

    The victim was then beaten with a tire iron and burned with a cigarette lighter, chained to the truck and dragged up the road, prosecutors said.

    The victim said he was able to escape when the men turned a corner.

    The victim recovered from his injuries, which included cuts and bruises.

    The Darlington County Sheriff's Office had charged the men with assault and battery with intent to kill, kidnapping and armed robbery.

    The victim, who is white, said Smith and McKay, who are black, made racial slurs while chaining him to the truck.

    Authorities said they do not doubt the comments were made but said the crime did not appear to be racially motivated, because the robbery occurred first.

    I'm confused here. In 1999, a black man (James Byrd, Jr) was dragged behind a pick-up truck by two white men, and their sentence was increased because it was deemed to be a 'hate crime' . . . they were white, their victim was black. They had cut their victim's throat (isn't that a more 'hateful' act than robbery?) before dragging him.

    In this instance, the assailants had only robbed their victim before dragging him, knowing that he was not dead and it seems reasonable to believe that they might expect the dragging to lead to his death. Yet the courts deemed the action less 'hateful'.

    There is suddenly no humor in this thread. We're not talking about robberies thwarted because the supposed victim used an unexpected weapon to defend herself. We're talking about murder, racism, torture and violence on a level not frequently encountered in a civilized society.

    Or is it?

    There is, in fact, now a website devoted to hate crimes, and some of the examples they feature make it difficult to define that thin line between a hate crime and 'ordinary' violence.

    For example, in late September of 2005, a Navajo woman was dragged by the hair behind a pick-up truck by one of four Sioux tribal members in the truck. The ordeal 'only' lasted for one city block, and she was released before she died.

    Does the consideration of different tribal allegiance make this a hate crime?

    I don't know. And I'm not sure it's necessary to make the distinction.

    When you perform violence against another human being, and there is no "self-defense" rationalization for the action, it is at least hateful and more importantly it is prejudicial to your defense of your actions. The assailants must bear full responsibility for their assault, and it doesn't matter whether you are of the same genetic or cultural classification of your victim, there must be an element of hate or disdain involved.

    I don't belive in 'hate crimes', because I think it trivializes the violence involved.

    Every crime is a 'hate crime'. When you introduce the element of race, it makes it seem as if some races are more important than others, no matter which race (or cultural group) you choose to especially 'protect'. This emphasizes racial differences, and establishes an artificial and societally arbitrary evaluation between races.

    Isn't this exactly what we are trying to eliminate? Isn't violence between persons universally and equally deplored? Why is race, gender, sexual preference or culture considered when evaluating the degree of egrigiousness between one violent crime and another?

    The socialists among us would seemingly have us decide that it's less acceptable for a white person to murder a black man than it is for a black man to murder a white man (if we use James Byrd's murder as a standard), or for a heterosexual man to murder a homosexual man (if we use Mathew Shephard as a standard).

    But any death is an abomination. Those who would argue that one abomination is more egrigious than another are treading upon the slippery slope of positing that one person's life is more valuable or important than another, based solely upon racial (or cultural) characteristics of both the assaulted and the assailants.

    The implication is that this demeans, for example, the black man or the homosexual man or the Navajo woman, because they are 'untermenchen' and require special consideration . . . they do not (again, by implication rather than by my personal belief) deserve the same protection as does any other man or woman.

    I completely reject this mindset.

    Every man, every woman, who is assaulted or murdered deserves full protection because he or she is a human being. We all deserve the same protection. Our death should always be deserving of the same condemnation. Our assailants and our murderers should receive the same punishment.

    To do otherwise undermines our position in society. To do less implies that we are not equal in the eyes in the law.

    To apply the law inequitably undermines the Rule of Law, and this is the only feature of Western Civilization which separates from the Barbarians who hijack airliners and fly them into skyscrapers.

    I've enjoyed presenting the first couple of stories, because they were uncomplicated examples of people who defended themselves against common assailants. I don't enjoy reporting this last story, because it calls into question the issue of whether or not we truly accept all citizens as worthy of equal treatment under the law.

    There is no joy to be found here. Our nation has taken a cruel turn here, and I am sickened by it.

    I will speak no more of it, because it presents evidence that sexual and racial bigotry is still strong in America, and it is being promulgated by our most liberal (and supposedly Socialist) elements.