PREACHER ON TV: …nointed with oil on troubled waters? Oh, Heavenly Grid, help us bear up thy Standard, our Chevron flashing bright across the Gulf of Compromise, standing Humble on the Rich Field of Mobile American Thinking? Here in this Shell we call Life… (excerpted from The Firesign Theatre’s “How Can You Be In Two Places At Once, When You’re Not Anywhere At All”)
Oregon Department of Transportation
By all accounts, Robin Speronis is engaged in a successful experiment in “living off the grid” in Cape Coral, Florida. The 54-year-old former real estate agent disconnected from city water and power about a year and a half ago. Now she relies on solar panels, propane lanterns, and collected rain water in her duplex and seems quite happy about it. But the city clearly is not. Officials tried to boot her from her home, and have now given her until the end of March to reconnect to the grid. A special magistrate who tossed many of the charges and admits that reasonableness may not play a role in the rules says she will ultimately have to comply. Speronis is standing firm.
You can’t be FREE, all by yourself, doing as you please! That’s not being part of the collective! Don’t you know it takes a village? Resistance is futile!
Okay, all you freedom-loving self-actualized, libertarians and self-governing folks. Listen up. The government NEEDS you.
Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun – Mao Tse Tung
h/t Say Uncle
or rather (oops, my mistake), by the dealer’s government agency watchdog…
“It is clear that agency rules were not followed in many of the incidents, which show at least 49 guns were lost or stolen nationwide between 2009 and 2013.”
“The newly released ATF reports show that between 2009 and 2013, agents lost their guns or had them stolen in at least 45 incidents — with a couple of the cases involving the loss of three firearms.
It is unclear if the records include “missing” guns, a separate category used by the agency.
Most of the lost weapons were handguns, but there also were at least two assault rifles stolen. Typically the reports do not indicate what happened to the unrecovered guns. However, in a November 2008 incident, the gun may have wound up in Mexico, according to the report.”
“The report cited examples similar to those in the documents obtained by the Journal Sentinel, with agents leaving weapons in public bathrooms, atop their vehicles, on an airplane and one in a shopping cart.”
Via Katie Pavlich
I sit here wondering how this compares with licensed firearms dealer records, and, of course, the whole Fast & Furious debacle. And wonder if any of the BATFE missing arms are responsible for crimes or even murders?
Inquiring minds want to know.
h/t David Hardy
Ninety Miles From Tyranny brings us the story…
How girl ELEVEN grabbed gun and shot dead cougar that was stalking her brother, 13, outside their house (link)
Of course, these kids would have been much safer had they no firearm or safety or shooting instruction or access to firearms. After all, the cougars were here first.
Picking on a poor, defenseless animal like that, how dare they!
It’s for the children…
PS – I took my first shot at age 6. When did you start?
Lagniappe’s Lair (Murphy’s Law) posted about one of his favorite eateries posting a ‘no open carry of weapons’ sign.
Regarding the restaurant’s decision to limit the patronage of their establishment, and his decision to not eat there, henceforth.
One of his commenters, Papa Bear, posted the following:
Huh, I wonder what would happen if I owned a business and posted a sign “No openly gay or closet individuals allowed”?
An interesting twist on the rights of business to refuse service, and the rights of individuals to be let alone with their proclivities. Got me thinking of this flap on AZ Governor Jan Brewer’s desk, the ‘right to refuse service’ bill – which the media is soundly trouncing, lest she sign it.
I still believe in the businesses right to refuse service, and the individual’s right to vote with their feet, and take their stomachs and money elsewhere.
Of course, as another of Murphy’s commenters said (in part):
They do have that right, and they are allowed to make that business decision. We, however, also have a right to take our business there or elsewhere. Well, we did until Obamacare came about, anyhow.
As my dear departed Father used to say, “ANOTHER country heard from!”
Is this Republic’s goal to support the rights of individuals, or is this democracy’s goal to enforce the will of the majority, ignoring minority rights. Or the will of the elite?
I fear that decision has already been made…
THIS JUST IN. ARIZONA GOVERNOR JAN BREWER VETOED THE BILL. Was it her choice as governor, or ‘the will of the
vocal ‘majority’? Who knows?
The United States seems hell-bent on making all nationalities resident here inclusive – even those who aren’t here legally and those who fail to assimilate into American culture.
And those who refuse to learn or use English.
My ancestors came here legally from Germany (and Ireland – kinda already speaking English!). learned it and assimilated. There were proud Americans.
Witness below the nation/nation-state/Russian satellite of The Ukraine:
Nationalism unites, and multi-culti ‘diversity’ divides. So does culture and language.
- Paying attention yet America? Liking how that whole ‘diversty’ joke is working for you?
Belgians have the whole Flemish vs. Walloon thing.
- I don’t know if this is WHY Brussels is so dysfunctional, but when all else fails it never hurts to go with “blame the French.”
Many of us understand what happened in the former Yugoslavia. The linguistic divide between Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian, Slovene, and Macedonian (plus a few more languages) made the ‘country’ less functional than their infamous car, the Yugo. (map and text courtesy of Theo Spark)
Is anyone in our State Department listening? If not, press one for ENGLISH.
The Art of Manliness (my go-to place for classic wisdom on the Web) recent posted 20 aphorisms, abhored (or ignored) in youth, but appreciated as I got older. (Sometimes)
An aphorism is a short, pithy statement that conveys a principle or contains a pearl of wisdom. Part of what makes them so powerful is that they can stand on their own without context; as the philologist Karl Wilhelm Friedrich Schlegel put it, “An aphorism ought to be entirely isolated from the surrounding world like a little work of art and complete in itself like a hedgehog.”
Here is one. CLICK on it to link to the remaining 19.
(Courtesy of The Armed Lutheran)
Last week I responded to a fan who wrote me asking for advice on how to convince his anti-gun wife to allow him to buy and carry a handgun. This week I got similar questions from a fan who is debating whether to carry concealed: is anywhere safe?
I find it difficult to justify carrying around a weapon at all times. True, I understand that crime can happen anywhere, but to be honest, it would be difficult to justify carrying around a gun to a place where no crime has happened, ever. Do you honestly think that you’re going to need your firearm to protect your family if you’re out in ‘safe‘ areas?”
The blanket assertion that no crime has happened, ever, is far fetched. But, lets accept the hypothetical. Let’s assume that no crimes have ever occurred in your house. Fine. Do you intend to ever leave your house? If your neighborhood is crime-free, that’s wonderful. Mine is too. Do you every leave the neighborhood to get gas for your car or to get groceries or to go shopping? Unless you are completely self-sufficient, home-schooling your kids, growing your own food, sewing your own clothing, you probably need to leave the house and your neighborhood from time to time. And I guarantee that the places you go are not “safe.”
Do you then limit your excursions outside the home to places where crimes have never been committed. I’m not sure how you determine that, unless you scour through police reports for every place you go, before you go there. Crimes happen everywhere, every day. Just because it hasn’t happened yet doesn’t mean it won’t.
Let’s look at this another way. I’ve never had a house fire, my home has never burned. Yet I keep a fire extinguisher in my house. How can I justify the expense of having multiple fire extinguishers in a place where no fire has happened, ever? My kids have never drowned in my swimming pool. Neither have I. Nor has my wife. Yet I paid for swimming lessons for my kids. How could I justify the expense of private swimming lessons? My car has never broken down in a snow storm like the one that hit Atlanta recently, leaving thousands of people stranded. Yet I keep a “get home bag” in both of my cars. How can I justify the expense of those supplies when I have never been stranded, ever.
Nobody had ever driven a truck into the Luby’s Cafeteria in Killeen, Texas, before George Hennard did it on October 16, 1991. He then proceeded to shoot 50 people, killing 23. Ask Suzanna Hupp how it felt to watch her parents shot to death, while her pistol was locked away in her car. If only she had been allowed to carry it, maybe something could have been done to stop the slaughter. That event sparked the passage of Texas’ shall-issue concealed carry law in 1995.
Ask Amanda Collins, about how it felt to be unable to defend herself at the University of Nevada when she was raped at gunpoint on campus, in a so-called “gun free zone.”
Ask Holly Adams, whose daughter died in the Virginia Tech massacre, how she feels.
How many people — lying in pools of their own blood, suffering through the indignity of rape or torture, hiding in a closet from an active shooter, breathing their final breaths — thought to themselves “I can’t believe this is happening to me?” How many people do you see at night on TV, interviewed after some horrific crime, telling reporters that they just can’t believe it happened in their neighborhood.
When asked why people decide to buy or carry a gun, they give a variety of answers. Some decide to do it in response to a crime. They’ve been attacked or had an incident which left them feeling vulnerable, like the incidents I recounted in my previous post. Some do it because they live or work in a crime-ridden area. Most do it to be prepared, so that IF something happens, they won’t be defenseless. It’s not paranoid to want to be prepared for the worst.
You are ultimately responsible for your own protection. The Supreme Court has ruled that police have no duty to protect you. So, when something bad happens, would you rather have the means to defend yourself and your family or would you leave it to the police? If you choose the latter, that’s fine. Just realize that calling 9-1-1 means someone else with a gun will come to your rescue, but will most likely show up in time to question witnesses, gather evidence, and draw a chalk line around your carcass.
The bottom line, though, is that nowhere is safe. Deranged lunatics have proven time and time again, that everywhere is safe until it’s not. Luby’s Cafeteria. Sandy Hook Elementary School. The Aurora theater. Columbine High School. Virginia Tech. Northern Illinois University. Santana High School. Bath Township. Dunblane. University of Texas. University of Nevada. Fort Hood. All of these places, and thousands of others were thought to be safe until someone made them hunting grounds for violent criminals.
“Safe areas,” “Safe Zones,” “Gun Free Zones,” simply do not exist. The safety you think exists is a facade and ignoring the realities of the world doesn’t make you safer. It leaves you vulnerable. Evil exists. And it doesn’t look like a gun. It looks like Dylan Kliebold. Charles Manson. Jared Laughner. James Holmes. George Hennard. Jeffrey Dahmer. Adam Lanza. Andrew Kehoe. Charles Whitman. Thomas Hamilton. Seung-Hui Cho. Evil looks like man. And it’s not deterred by signs or laws.
So, do I honestly think I am going to need my firearm to protect my family? I pray that I never do. But I’m not so naive as to think that I never will. (The Armed Lutheran)
Keads wrote on FB regarding a potential student, whose wife did not want a gun in the house, wanting his tutelege. The prospective student thought one hour of training might suffice!
I was reminded both of potential shooting students, and of private investigation clients.
I had shooting students who didn’t think their spouse would let them purchase a firearm. And those who already had a number of them, and also bad habits that needed unravelling. Many of my students were gratis, as I felt it was my duty to teach (and, at the time I could afford to do it that way!)
But, when I was a private investigator (cue walking bass music here) I was trying to eke out a living, and as such was not always as discriminatory as I would have liked. When the phone bill’s due, and you promised the wife the PI biz would float on it’s own, you took whatever came your way.
Ah, there’s the rub!
Fortunately, Keads had other information come his way. Like the potential student thought ONE HOUR of instruction would be sufficient to complete his training – thus his decision was made for him. Sorry, Charlie! (I suspect there’s a liability component here, as well.)
Sadly, when it came to P.I. clients, I pretty much was a slave to the almighty dollar. Was I an expert in electronic debugging? No, but I was able to borrow the equipment and comport myself well enough to make a few dollars – carefully explaining I was only as good as the equipment was.
Fortunately, that wasn’t my P.I. bread-and-butter. Those were locating persons (usually skip-traces) and domestic cases. At least locations were for insurance adjusters, which meant repeat business. Domestics? Hardly. Cheated on wives and girlfriends are tough to get money from.
I would think shooting students who messed up would have a liability component, as well!
Watch your back, Jack (or Jane)!
Stormbringer reminded us of a teacher of yore. We need more like her, today.
Meet Captain Nieves Fernandez, the only known Filipino female guerrilla leader and school teacher. When the Japanese came to take the children under her care she shot them. She didn’t hide in a closet, she didn’t put up a gun free zone sign, she shot them in the face with her latong (a home made shotgun).
Note she has an M1 carbine with a 15 round magazine – illegal in the Gun Control States of California and Massachusetts.
She then went on to kill over 200 Japanese soldiers during the war with a group of commandos and holds the distinction as the only female commander of a resistance group in the Philippines.
In this photo she is showing U.S. Army Private Andrew Lupiba how she used her bolo to silently kill Japanese sentries during the occupation of Leyte Island.
Can you imagine an American school teacher in the day & age having the chutzpah to pull off a class act like this?
h/t Theo Spark
A chemist for the state of Massachusetts, Annie Dookhan, pleaded guilty on Friday to falsifying tens of thousands of drug arrest investigations. WBUR has collected its stories on Dookhan into a website called Bad Chemistry, an investigation which they say calls into doubt 40,323 cases she was personally involved in and 190,000 cases the lab worked on. The lab is now closed.
Gee, ya think there will be legal repercussions here?
“The ripple effects of the potentially bogus testing are staggering for the criminal justice system and for the defendants. As authorities review the cases involved, they’re also considering cases where defendants received stiffer sentences because of previous offenses. Or cases where defendants risked or lost jobs, public housing, custody of their children, or deportation.
“District attorneys have set up ‘war rooms’ in their offices just so staffers can research and match the cases in which Dookhan tested the drug evidence. They’ve hired retired judges to preside over to review each case and decide whether to release those incarcerated and/or hold new trials.”
Research shows that the problem reaches far beyond a few states. According to a study published last year in Criminal Justice Ethics, the American system by and large perverts the incentives of the people working in it, such that everyone, from police, to prosecutors, and, apparently, even the lab scientists, are more motivated to get a guilty verdict rather than to ascertain real guilt or innocence.
This is a short ways from a story I’ve covered before: civil forfeiture, in which police legally steal money from people under the argument that anyone carrying that much cash must be involved with drugs. That’s not from a conviction by jury, but simply by seizing assets in a traffic stop or at an arrest. Nationally, several police departments and prosecutors’ offices brag about cars and boats they got this way. But it’s not just civil forfeiture on steroids and it’s not just Massachusetts; only eight states have laws that bar the use of forfeiture proceeds for the benefit of the seizing police department, and of the other 42 states, 16 give at least 50 percent of seized assets to law enforcement, and in 26 states, it is 100 percent. By creating a system which rewards its police for seizing property and that funds state crime labs by convictions, is it really such a wonder that someone like Annie Dookhan would do what she did to ensure that her lab got as many convictions as possible? (The Silicon Graybeard)
And how about all the civil litigation against The State resulting from this public malfeasance?
A close friend is always harping about the cronyism resulting from the privatization of prisons in our State. The essence being we need government to keep everything on the up-and-up.
One of the periodicals mentioned in the above article is Criminal Justice Ethics.
Doesn’t anyone take an oath and honor it, anymore?