Friday, August 07, 2009

New Jersey vs The Shooting Wire

Once again, our friend Jim Shepherd of "The Shooting Wire" excoriates an Eastern Seaboard State which has a Big Johnson against the Second Amendment, and once again I quote his thrice-weekly opinion piece supporting the Second Amendment.

[And also, because The Shooting Wire remains determined to provide a "permanent link" to Shepherd's commentary, I am obliged to quote the thrice-weekly commentary in full, in order to provide you with his opinion. Again, I urge you to subscribe to The Shooting Wire to avail yourself of ... in this instance ... his incisive commentary also on "Second Amendment Foundation has filed suit against the District of Columbia in an effort to compel the District to issue carry permits to law-abiding citizens", and "the National Park Service has launched a program encouraging hunters to voluntarily switch to alternative ammunitions and stop using lead bullets. The NPS says the lead's a health threat." You should subscribe to The Shooting Wire here. Do it now!]

Geek take: transparent attempt to undermine the Second Amendment.

Shepherd sez:
Bad Laws, Bad Legislators, Bad Ideas

On Friday, it would be nice to be able to talk about the anticipation with which we all look toward the weekend. After all, it's the most continuous time many of us have to enjoy the outdoors. Some Fridays, unfortunately, that's just not possible.

Yesterday, New Jersey became the fourth state to pass legislation limiting state residents to one handgun purchase every thirty days. We have been told, however, that this isn't legislation designed to be anti-handgun - it's anti-violence legislation.

Right. It's necessary in a state with almost as many firearms regulations as indicted legislators. It's nothing more than "feel-good" legislation. The bill's supporters says it's going to cut of a supply of guns to gangs and others who use straw purchases to do their gun buying for them.

In fact, says Bryan Miller, executive director of Ceasefire NJ, [link added by Cogito Ergo Geek editor] "The only people who need more than 13 handguns a year are legitimate collectors, exempted by the law, and handgun traffickers who need to buy and sell handguns in volume to make a profit from their dirty and damaging and illegal trade."

To their credit, supporters of the bill have managed to keep the wealthy collectors off their backs by exempting "legitimate collectors." They've also kept hunters from having much of a voice in the argument, too. Handguns are illegal for hunting there.

"This premise of this law is a fallacy," stated state Assemblyman Gary Chiusano. [link added by Cogito Ergo Geek editor] "Many New Jersey residents have to wait upwards of 100 days to obtain a pistol permit. So after passing background checks, getting fingerprinted, and paying fees to obtain the permit, which are only valid for 90 days anyway, government is now telling people they can only purchase one handgun in a 30 day window after going through all of this bureaucracy. This bill is pure symbolism."

"In a recent Executive Order, Governor Corzine [link added by Cogito Ergo Geek editor] created a task force to examine New Jersey's firearms laws," said Assembly member Steve Oroho [link added by Cogito Ergo Geek editor] , who volunteered to serve on the task force. "But in less than a month after creating the task force, he is already pushing for new gun laws. The Governor is looking to score political points among his far left constituency in what he probably hopes will one day be a universal ban on private citizens owning firearms."

It's wishful thinking, but any company that manufactures or sells handgun-related products in New Jersey (or Maryland, or Virginia, or California - the other three state with similar legislation) should be in the process of packing and relocating. It's time firearms manufacturers started demonstrating their disapproval with idiotic legislation by removing their contributions to the tax base that pays the salaries of these legislators.

Like I said, wishful thinking.

And like I said:
this is a "transparent attempt to undermine the Second Amendment."

The part of the "... the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed" doesn't specify Congress. It isn't just in imposition on "CONGRESS". It's worded such that every governmental entity not only should, but must take heed of this elementary "right of the people".

It is a basic American Constitutional concept that our citizens enjoy certain "unalienable rights". The difference between "Unalienable" and "Inalienable" is significant. (See previous link. Discussion on that difference is available here.)

The concept of "States Rights" is also significant. In the 10th amendment of the Constitution, we discover that:
"The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people. "

In this specific case, we see that the Federal Government does indeed, in the incarnation of the Bill of Rights, take precedence over the rights of the individual state.

Here, the State of New Jersey has taken it upon itself to abridge the Second Amendment (" ... Shall Not be infringed") The state has not this permission according the the Constitution, any more than has Washington, D.C. the constitutional permission. As has been established by the Heller Decision of 2007:
1. The Second Amendment protects an individual right to possess a
firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for
traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home.
Pp. 2–53.
(a) The Amendment’s prefatory clause announces a purpose, but
does not limit or expand the scope of the second part, the operative
clause. The operative clause’s text and history demonstrate that it
connotes an individual right to keep and bear arms. Pp. 2–22.
(b) The prefatory clause comports with the Court’s interpretation
of the operative clause.
[emphasis added by Cogito Ergo Geek]

We see here that a state has subdefined the number of firearms which an individual may purchase during an arbitrary period of time. While it may suggest a valid reason for enactment (to prevent 'straw purchases" of weapons for later sale), it still constitutes an 'abridgment' of the right guaranteed by the Constitution.

Despite their obvious good intentions, the legislators of the good state of New Jersey have obviously run afoul of the Constitution of the United States of America. That presumption cannot be allowed to stand without challenge.

Often Underestimated

Many have underestimated the will of the American people

(H/T: The Hobo Brasser )

Political Commentary -- Pttuiiii

I am mindful that a lot of the posting I have been submitting lately has been political in nature. (I say that just in case you think I have been sleep-writing.)

This was not the original intention of this blog.

The sad fact is, I've been reading newspapers more frequently than I have been participating in shooting competition, and frankly I have been more appalled by the political events in my homeland than I am by the many reasons I have not been doing as much shooting as I would prefer.

If you find yourself in the same situation, you too may be suffering from "Politiomiolitis", which is loosely defined as ... well, make up your own definition. I'm making up this entire article as I go along, so it's entirely fair.

Here's a piece of Full Discovery:
At one time, I found myself being very grateful to God that my son was not obliged to be drafted into the military. I tried that once. Didn't much like it.

Now my much-beloved son has volunteered to join the military. I am proud of him for his decision, and for the reasons he made that decision, but I am so concerned that he has put himself "In Harm's Way".

Ultimately, almost everything I do is showcased against the background of concern for my children. Perhaps you find yourself applying the same yardstick; perhaps not.

But I look at the ways that politics is poisoning the country of my birth, and I grieve for my children.

I'm old, I won't have to put up with this 'stuff' much longer. I fear that politics may shorten my life, given the Rationed Health Care Bill which looks frighteningly likely to end up looking like the British Health Care System. There are so many other easy-spending bills which seem to be passed without the opportunity for our legislators to even read, even understand the new programs. My son, my daughter, and their children will have to pay for them even if they see no real benefits to these "cloudkookoolandian" attempts at socialism.

And so [sigh] I'm afraid you'll just have to put up with my persistent politicization of Cogito Ergo Geek.

As the saying goes, I love my country but I fear my government. Mostly, I fear that the current administration may historically be viewed as the worst in the past century, and the burdon of correcting these economic and societal errors will be visited upon our progeny.

Our grandparents had to deal with the problems of The Great War ... World War I, "The War to End All Wars".

Our parents faced similar problems recovering from the ill effects of World War II.

We were in charge of The Viet Nam War; the War Against Poverty; and The Great Society -- and we handled it badly. We do not have the luxury or our fore-bearers, we cannot claim to have successfully faced fearful challenges and emerged triumphant. We even elected Jimmy Carter. Who is going to name US "The Great Generation"?

Nobody, and rightfully so.

Now we discover the need to defend ourselves against an administration which is more intrusive that LBJ, less competent than Carter, and sneakier than Tricky Dicky. (Side note: I cast my first ballot against Richard Nixon, because I would not buy a used car from that man. I think it's an honest commentary to assert that I would not buy a condom from Barrack Obama.)

You and I probably will not be the ones who will decide which direction our nation will move in this decade.

We can only hope that we have raised our children well, have educated them to think for themselves, and that they have learned to take counsel of their native good sense to identify and know a charlatan when they see one, reject his attempts to undermine our culture, indemnify his attempts to legislate our country into a Socialist Society, and seek leadership from an as-yet-unidentified leader who relies less on rhetoric and more on the Constitution which has served us so well.

God help us.

PS: yes, I will probably continue to speak out against political measures which, in my opinion, threaten our country and our culture, despite attempts by our new rulers to encroach on our constitutional thought and the exercise our First Amendment rights as if it were a terrorist action.
There is a lot of disinformation about health insurance reform out there, spanning from control of personal finances to end of life care. These rumors often travel just below the surface via chain emails or through casual conversation. Since we can’t keep track of all of them here at the White House, we’re asking for your help. If you get an email or see something on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy, send it to

There's something "fishy" about that, all right.

Fred Thompson's frantically paced (perhaps necessarily) take on this subject is available as an audio file here.

The Smallest Minority Drives On

In case you didn't catch Kevin's comment in the sidebar, the Gun Bloggers Rendesvous has found a new organization to handle the ticket sales to benefit Soldiers Angels (see the earlier post explaining their disappointment with the hopolophobic PayPal here).

There's a full update at Kevin's website, so clicky on The Smallest Minority, here and take a look at the pistol they're raffling off.

Kevin's not only a talented writer and a consummate researcher of information, he's a thoughtful and generous person. All the more reason to check his website frequently.

I do.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

"Facts Are Stubborn Things" - 5 things I don't like about the Obama Administration

Every day I promise myself not to write about Politics, and every day something new comes up that I just can't ignore. Until, eventually, I find myself writing about another Political subject. The only thing I can do now is to combine them into one great Mega-Blog (similar to BlogMeat) and let it rip.

So, here are the "5 things I don't like about the Obama Administration

#1: Squealing on Your Neighbor:

The White House - Blog Post
- Facts Are Stubborn Things

The White House recently 'encouraged citizens' to report friends and neighbors who say something "fishy" about Obama-Care.


Isn't this the land of the First Amendment? Remember "Freedom of Speech"? Does this sound like Nazi Germany? (Remember "BusHitler"?)

If people do turn in Bloggers, Email addresses, friends, neighbors, family ... what is Obama going to do with it? Is he going to invite Anti-Obama citizens to the white house for a beer and a chat? Why does the President of the United States, the most powerful person in the world, need to closely monitor -- for example -- Internet Chat? Is he that insecure? Or is he that controlling.

#2: ObamaCare

I've talked about this before. Perhaps the best "Quote Of The Day" is:
"Do you want us to believe that a Government that can't even run a 'Cash for Clunkers' program us going to run one seventh of our U.S. Economy?"
(Note that this is presented under the Democratic National Party proposition that "Town Hall Meetings Are 'manufactured'". This proposition appears to be intended to undermine the verisimilitude of Private Citizens who are willing to stand up to powerful Democratic politicians in a public venue.

#3: Cash For Clunkers
Last weekend ... the first week of the 'Cash for Clunkers' program (which promised to give the consumer up to $4500 toward the purchase of a new car by trading in a fuel-inneficient 'old car') was allocated one billion dollars. The program ran through the first billion in one week. Then they voted another TWO BILLION DOLLARS to continue the program for an unspecified period of time.

On Saturday, I listened to a radio program called "MoneyTalks". It features Economists discussing the day-to-day American Economy. (I would include the URL, but I cant' be sure I have the right program in my search.)

The segment that I heard featured a New Car Dealer who was trying to deal with the new federal laws regarding the "Cash For Clunkers" program.

His point was that he had to get RID of the clunkers, and also to be REIMBURSED by the Federal Government for those clunkers he had accepted as trade (usually at a greatly enhanced price, far above their resale value.)

According to the caller, the whole point of the program was to get the 'Clunkers' off the road. The accepted solution was to send the Clunkers to a junk yard which would crush/smash said Clunkers into a Rubiks Cube of indefinable junk metal.

Unfortunately, according to the Caller, there are "over 400 pages" of Federal Regulations. The junk yard owners in his area were unwilling or unable to interpret the regulations concerning the rendering of "Clunkers" to "Scrap Metal", and therefore he could not even give the "Clunkers" to a scrapyard.

Ultimately, the dealer was forced to accumulate these Clunkers, and daily acquire even more Clunkers (by Federal Law), but until he could dispose of them ... he could not petition for re-imbursement from the Federal Government.

We have heard stories of Dealers who were cycling Clunkers rapidly, and making money off the deal. But I certainly haven't heard a dealer say that he was NOT LOSING MONEY from the "Cash For Clunkers" program. Either before or after it ran out of money.

And by the way, even if the "Cash For Clunkers" program was working, why are we paying for it? Has anyone here voted to spend his taxes on this P.O.S. initiative?

#4: Big Brother Programs: ObamaCare
August 4, 2009: Hitler Jugend reincarnated

"There is a lot of disinformation about health insurance reform out there, spanning from control of personal finances to end of life care. These rumors often travel just below the surface via chain emails or through casual conversation. Since we can’t keep track of all of them here at the White House, we’re asking for your help. If you get an email or see something on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy, send it to"
The "disinformation" is being defined by the Obama Administration. Essentially, anyone who speaks out about the ObamaCare bill is "Fishy", and should be Reported to the Authorities.

But this isn't about the "Squeal On Your Neighbors" program, its about the National Health Care Bill

We should all be concerned about a bill which is being rammed down the throats of Congress without allowing the congress-persons to even read the bill, let along assimilate the meaning of the various sections of the bill. We already know that it is being pushed by the Obama Administration to be voted on "quickly" (see Senator Arlen Specter's speach being interrupted by the attendees at a Town Hall meeting when he advocates that the bill should be passed "Quickly".)

I have notified my (Democratic) Representative, and my (Democratic) Senator that I would prefer they not vote in favor of any bill which they have not read, fully understand, agree that the measures proposed meet with thefull support of their constituents, and that they not vote along "Party Lines" unless they are certain that the bill would improve the lot of their constituents.

None of my representatives, of course, have replied to my letters. That's okay, I didn't vote for them anyway, and if this P.O.S. bill passes I won't vote for them again.

#5: The Big Lie (Town Hall anger "Manufactured")
The thing that really pisses me off is that we, the "Little People", are finally speaking out in direct dialogue with our political representatives .... and the Democratic Party is spinnin this as "Manufactured Debate".

That is to say, the Vested Interests (Drug Manufactureres, and Medical Community Lobbyists) are influencing what we, "The Little People", say in response to ObamaCare.

This is just the lowest, cut-throat Political Spin-Meistering I can conceive of. Th

The idea that private citizens who are confronting their elective representives in a Town Hall setting because Corporate vested interests have somehow got to them is not only insulting and demeaning, it's downright libelous. But because it is political speach, the scare-mongerers are protected by the First Amendment.

This is the point at which private citizens need to rise up, declare their independence, and excoriate the Democratic Party and the Obama Administration for their underhanded, shady political tactics.

They have been doing that to us for years, and if we don't start hoisting them on their own petards we will find ourselves encumbered with a Regency and so-called "Social Programs" whic not only don't work, but discrimate against the Poor, the Sick, the Lame and the Old.

Interpretation: If Obama can't convince you to change your vote to support him, he can (between the federal law to make all of your personal information made available to the Government, and his Socialist Agenda of "Redistribution of Wealth") tie you up in strings until you are unable to function as an independent Citizen.


SWMBO Report: SWMBO and The Tissue Sample

You may recall, those of you who are personally acquainted with SWMBO (She ... Who Must Be Obeyed) that my last update described our outing to San Diego in early July and the news that she had been accepted for an experimental 'genotyping' program out of Massachusetts General.

The first step, after enrolling (which she did a month ago) is to submit a tissue sample to the ancilliary facility at U.C. Irvine.

That "simple out-patient procedure" was performed last week at the local Hospital here in Oregon. It was suppose to have been done on Thursday, but due to a scheduling F...-up error she had to go back on Friday to have it actually performed.

The last time they performed this procedure, almost a year ago, they managed to collapse her lung and, in the words of the lead surgeon "we almost lost her on the table". Consequently, I was not entirely phlegmatic last week, but eventually they did manage to get her into the actual operating room and acquired the tissue sample by the simple process of shoving a horse-doctor needle through her ribcage and sucking "stuff" out of her lungs.

Whew! We're both glad that we got past that procedure okay.

That was Friday, July 31, 2009.

Today (Wednesday, August 5, 2009) I was asking SWMBO if she had any idea when she would get the results of her genotyping.

Turns out there's a story here.

Yesterday -- Tuesday -- she had an appointment with her local Oncologist. He hadn't sent the tissue sample out, yet. Why? Because he didn't have a mailing address.

Fortunately, SWMBO had the business card she had received in Irvine from the interviewer, Doctor Woo. (I may not have spelled that right. When SWMBO says it, it sounds more like "OO" ... no double-u sound, rhymes with "You". But I digress, as usual.)

After making photocopies of the business card, her doctor called Dr. Woo. No answer. No secretary (turns out she was 'at lunch'). No voice mail. Also, apparently, no back-up phone numbers on the card and who knows if there's an email address. Are these people barbarians? No email address?

So SWMBO mentioned to her Oncologist (who, she explained parenthetically, was seeing back-to-back patients all day, every day, and really doesn't have time to be making phone calls while his waiting room as a queue at the front door) that his Office Assistant seemed to have had no trouble making contact with the appropriate people at U.C. Irvine, and if he just turned the problem over to that lady she would probably manage to extract the proper street address where he should send the tissue sample ... which had been sitting in his office for FIVE DAYS!

[emphasis mine. SWMBO is much to refined to raise her voice unless she is the RO at a USPSA match, in which case, you had better "get off your ass and tape these targets". But that's another story.]

At this point in her story, I interrupted SWMB O:
  • (me) "Wait a minute. You told him how to run his office?"
  • (she) "Uh, well, yes. I guess I did."
  • (me) {laughing} "I think he should hire you!"
Okay, so maybe you had to be there.

The point is that the original deal was a vague explanation that it would take "two to four weeks" to process (is the correct word "genotype"?) the tissue sample ... after it arrives.

Which may be a while, because as far as either of us know today the tissue sample hasn't even been sent yet. But I think the local office has a mailing address, and I assume that they have acted expeditiously to get the dreck in the mail.


SWMBO was a little chastened when I pointed out that she had told her doctor how to run his office. "I guess I'm a Pushy Broad, huh?" she asked.

"No", I replied.

"I think you are your own best advocate. I think you are a resourceful, dynamic, strong and independent woman who has her best interests at heart and a clearly defined goal; survival. I think this is a marvelous opportunity for you to act as your own advocate. It provides a challenge for your mind and an output for your energy. And it also gives me something that I can do to help. Give me a white pleated skirt and a pair of pom-poms, and I will be your cheerleader."

We negotiated, and I won. No actual pleated skirt, and the pom-poms can be any color combination except Black and Orange (the 'school colors' of my alma mater and my employer).

Then we had a lengthy conversation about the atrocity God had visited upon us by inventing the deplorable color "orange". She likes it, I don't. But then, she grew up in a town where the university and the neighboring town adopted "Black and Orange". Pity, the lovely lady never had a chance.

And you thought it was Easy Being Geek.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Blogmeat Around The World

Once again it's time for me to waste your time, reading about silly things that people do ... just because I can.

Today's BlogMeat has an international flavor. Why should we constantly point out the logical inconsistencies of Those Silly Brits?

Speaking of which, here's TWO reasons why we should be proud that we're not Brits. (Not that we're that far away from them; by my reckoning, Obama will have us marching in lockstep with The Brits before the decade is over.)

Mom in U.K. fined for grieving too long at baby son's funeral

That's right. You have 30 minutes to whine and whimper and generally indulge in a "Pity Party" when your child's to be cremated in Jolly Old England. After that, you're paying for their time. The fine was $173 in this specific instance.

Officials at the crematorium, run by a local English council, impose an extra charge if any funeral runs over its 30-minute slot.

However, the couple's funeral directors said there was plenty of time for the next funeral which was not due to take place for another 50 minutes.

Rouse’s partner, Lee Smythe, said the fee was "sick and disgusting.""Terrie was weeping hysterically," he said. "She just wanted a few extra minutes to say goodbye to our much-loved little boy."

So much for "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain". In this case, he's holding a stop-watch in one hand and an "Over Parking" ticket-form in the other.

Is all tha color too much for you? Are you a "Smallville-kind-of-person"? Do you prefer life to be in black-and white?

No problem. Also from Our British Cousins:

Teen Charged over Harry Potter Bleach Attack
When a bunch of yobs were chatting it up during the matinee at the cinema, one brave British Mother asked them to please be quiet so the rest of the audience could hear the movie.

Apparently incensed by the repressive actions of this Conservative RightWing Nutcase Judgmental Mother ....

... two people in the group followed the family to a nearby restaurant after the screening and threw bleach over the mother's head and back.

She suffered burns to her skin and possible permanent damage to her eyes.

That'll teach her to speak up in public!

What do you want to bet that the 2 Yobs --"Young, Outgoing Boys" -- will receive ASBO's? (Note: "Anti-Social Behavior Orders" are essentially a free-pass for any predator who chooses to 'act up'. They're supposedly a one-time entry-level penalty, about as intimidating as a Parking Citation, but you know The Brits: "It worked so well the last time, this time let's give him another ASBO. Then he'll REALLY be intimidated!"

But we have unfairly singled out The Brits. Let's look at another National Group displaying a frightful lack of Savoir Faire -- India!

Indian Activists Blast Ritual of Dropping Babies Off Mosque Roof

NEW DELHI Rights activists lashed out Friday at local officials who allowed hundreds of infants to be dropped from the roof of a mosque in western India in the belief that the fall — which ends when the babies are caught in a bedsheet — would ensure good health and prosperity for their families.

The ritual at the Baba Umer Durga, a Muslim shrine, is believed to have been followed for nearly 700 years, and each year hundreds of people, both Hindus and Muslims, take part in the ritual.

Local officials told television news stations there had been no reports of injuries.
Who are we, in this multi-cultural world, to say that one culture's practices are less acceptible than ours? Besides, in "nearly 700 years" of this practice, "there had been no reports of injuries"

Well, there wouldn't have been, would there?

Even in The West, we all celebrate "Bouncing Babies".

Still a little too close to home, isn't it?

Now for something really different; let's go to ... CHINA!

Two Rail Passengers Killed After Complaining About Humming

Two passengers have been stabbed to death after they complained about a man humming on a train, say reports in China.

The knifeman was humming along to his CD player when three people in the carriage complained about the noise.

A fight began and the trio wrestled the man to the floor and began beating him, said the state-run Xinhua news agency.

The man — identified only by his surname Yan — then pulled out a blade and stabbed all three of them.

One died on the train, while another died later in hospital.

The third man was taken to hospital and is recovering from his injuries.

Bernie Goetz, where are you when we really need you.

(See, we're really not so different after all, are we?)

Do we need to be a little closer to home? How about this, from Mexico:

Mexico Closes Cancun Beach, Alleges Sand Was Stolen

I knew that Mexico was "poor", but come ON!

No, I'm not going to touch that one. Clicky on the linky, read the story for yourself. It actually does make a scary sort of sense. Kind of.

Okay, okay, I guess we have time and space enough for just ONE MORE Turkey Story. This time, let's go to ..... Turkey:

Turkey demolition goes dramatically wrong as building fails to crumble and rolls onto its ROOF

Not much commentary, no comparisons with, for example, Red Adair or those demolitions explosive experts who took down large urban dwellings within the original footprint. We have grown to blase' about what happens when a building demolition goes 'right'. Here's what happens when it goes 'wrong'.

Pretty kewl, eh?

BTW, here's what it looks like when "implosions" go right:


Okay, okay, so let's look at how lame we can be (with a little effort) in the U. S. of A.:

How about Liberal radio talk show host speaking of Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh:

Liberal Talk Show Host Wishes "Madness" on Sarah Palin; Death on Rush Limbaugh - Audio 8/3/09
(Link to just the YouTube version here.)