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Life, Liberty, and the Firearms that protect them both

Archive for April 2011

I don’t know whether to laugh or cry

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Mark Steyn has a new piece up at National Review Online discussing the debt ceiling, quantitative easing, and other fiscal insanity.  Sounds boring as hell doesn’t it?  It probably would be, if it wasn’t Mark Steyn.

I tried up above to come up with a real-world comparison for the debt ceiling — imagine you’ve got a credit-card limit of 10K, etc. — but it’s harder to do that with the Fed’s policy: Imagine your left hand issues an IOU to your right hand in return for an e-mail with a large number on it . . . oh, never mind, it’ll only make your head hurt. “Quantitative easing” is extremely quantitative if not terribly easing, so raising the debt ceiling would enable us to issue more debt for us to buy from ourselves. You can see why Secretary Geithner thinks that’s a no-brainer.

Read the whole thing to get a practical understanding of what the talking heads are all arguing about.

Written by BornLib

April 30, 2011 at 10:04 pm

Posted in Economics

Litmus test

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I like books as much as the next guy, but some people are seriously lacking in perspective.

Miguel at Gun Free Zone brings our attention to a book review by a pair of academics that makes my hair stand on end.

Leverick claims the victim has a right to life and therefore has a right to use lethal force to defend it. Of course, this does not necessarily follow. Sally might have a right to a book, but she may not be able to use force to defend that book, much less deadly force to defend the book. Leverick is not entitled to assume that a right to something entails that one has the right to use as much force as is necessary to prevent the violation of that right

That’s right.  Fighting to protect yourself from being maimed, tortured, enslaved, or murdered is the moral equivalent to killing a man for stealing your newspaper.  Here is the part that is the litmus test: if any of that seems reasonable to you, seek psychiatric help.

Written by BornLib

April 30, 2011 at 9:03 pm

Posted in Self defense

Orwell exercise

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This is a pretty simple mental exercise.  First, go read this editorial written by George Orwell during World War II about the English pacifists.

Then, read it again, but mentally insert the prefix “Islamo” in front of every instance of the words Fascist or Fascism and substitute “al Qaeda” and “Taliban” for Nazi and Germany.

I used to be against the War on Terror, until I realized that giving it up would still leave Terror’s War on Us.

To go back to Orwell again, “The quickest way of ending a war is to lose it. “

Written by BornLib

April 30, 2011 at 8:02 pm

Posted in Terrorism

Petty poetry

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The CSGV has decided to upgrade their efforts to protect college students from magical ‘gun-free zone’ signs to magical ‘gun-free zone’ poetry.  It is about as sophisticated an argument as you would expect.

Cam Edwards of NRA News fights bad poetry with bad poetry.  He includes the original pro-gun-control poem in his YouTube video (the first four minutes), so you don’t need to bother watching the original video by itself.

Bob takes apart the original poem pretty much line by line on his blog.

For those not familiar with them, there is a wonderful grassroots organization called Students for Concealed Carry on Campus who are working hard to bring the basic right to protect oneself to college students across America.  Unlike our poet friend Mr. Cabellero, the Students for Concealed Carry on Campus can tell the difference between their friends, peers, and professors, and the criminals and maniacs who prey on them.  They understand that you cannot fight bad people by disarming good people.

Written by BornLib

April 29, 2011 at 7:55 am

Massachusetts House Democrats vote to curtail collective bargaining

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The story at Ace of Spades and Hot Air.

House lawmakers voted overwhelmingly last night to strip police officers, teachers, and other municipal employees of most of their rights to bargain over health care, saying the change would save millions of dollars for financially strapped cities and towns.

The 111-to-42 vote followed tougher measures to broadly eliminate collective bargaining rights for public employees in Ohio, Wisconsin, and other states. But unlike those efforts, the push in Massachusetts was led by Democrats who have traditionally stood with labor to oppose any reduction in workers’ rights.

SB5 doesn’t look quite so unreasonable now does it?

Written by BornLib

April 28, 2011 at 8:37 am

Posted in Economics

President Obama finally releases birth certificate

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Now we can finally talk about something else.

Not to be smug, but I didn’t have any faith in the Birther conspiracy theory.  My reasoning was, if there had been any dirt here, Clinton would have found it back during the primaries and nailed Obama with it to secure the nomination.

Now we all can put this behind us, except for the die-hards who, like the remaining 9/11 Truthers, will never be convinced no matter what they are shown.

Written by BornLib

April 27, 2011 at 8:55 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

I never liked him anyway

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Hat tip to SayUncle

Examiner: Trump weak on Second Amendment

I was never going to vote for Donald “I’m not doing it for any other reason. I like winning.” Trump anyway, but what’s one more nail in the coffin?

Written by BornLib

April 25, 2011 at 12:22 pm

Posted in 2A, Second Amendment

Matt Lundy is a lying scumbag

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BFA: Matt Lundy is a liar: Democrat panders to gun owners in order to earn good grades and endorsements.

When asked about the two key components addressed in HB45/SB17 in Buckeye Firearms Association’s 2010 candidate survey, Lundy told gun owners he was with them all the way.

The short version is he did the exact opposite of what he promised he would do, even going so far as to try and sabotage House Bill 45 with poison pill amendments.

Written by BornLib

April 25, 2011 at 12:01 pm

Kasich, unions, and education

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It just so happens that both parents of a friend of mine at work are Ohio teachers. In the new political and economic climate following the election his family is looking at a drop in income. My friend has decided this is Kasich’s fault, but I wonder what the truth of the matter is.

An economics professor from OU has mostly positive things to say about Kasich’s choices:
Richard Vedder: Kasich’s plan for higher education has good, bad points.

This is the part of particular interest to me though:

“Faced with the need to sharply reduce state expenditures both because of the recession and the irresponsible bipartisan failure of politicians to cut spending earlier, not to mention the end to federal stimulus funding, the governor had to propose huge cuts to all areas of government.”

Sounds to me like my friend is blaming Kasich for someone else’s mess that the governor now has to clean up.  We’re all familiar with the recession, so let’s start with the bipartisan failure of politicians to cut spending earlier.

“Consider the boom cycle preceding this latest recession. In the five years between 2002 and 2007, combined state general-fund revenue increased twice as fast as the rate of inflation, producing an excess $600 billion. If legislatures had chosen to be responsible, they could have maintained all current state services, increased spending to compensate for inflation and population growth, and still enacted a $500 billion tax cut.

Instead, lawmakers spent the windfall. From 2002 to 2007, overall spending rose 50 percent faster than inflation. Education spending increased almost 70 percent faster than inflation, even though the relative school-age population was falling.”

Ohio didn’t decrease, or even stabilize spending when the economy tanked either.

“Like most states, Ohio is in a jam, what with a budget deficit, high unemployment, and slumping economy. It operates on a two-year budget cycle and in fiscal years 2008-9, the state spent $49.8 billion. Now, they’ve just signed a new budget. A tough budget that reflects a lot of tough decisions, hard choices, and yadda yadda yadda.

The result? In fiscal 2010-11, the state will spend an estimated $50.5 billion.”

What happened you ask?

“When you count one-time federal economic stimulus dollars, public education funding rises by $502 million over the two-year budget cycle.”

One-time?  So what happens this time?

“While state funding for education would rise slightly, schools will be hurt by the loss of federal stimulus money: $981 million in overall Recovery Act funds for Ohio dry up starting July 1.

Factoring in the loss of federal money, overall funding for education would drop 11.5% in the coming fiscal year. But Kasich promised to double the voucher program, lift the cap on charter schools and allow parents and teachers to take over failing schools.”

So state education was being propped up by a temporary infusion of Federal funds.  54% of the lost funding was Federal money.

I am pleased to see Kasich’s support for the school voucher program was genuine.  I am very much in favor of school choice programs, for reasons better articulated by Dr. Walter Williams than I could hope to.

So what is a teacher’s union to do?  Why, charge each member a $50 fee of course!

As Thomas Sowell has so aptly put it, “The biggest myth about labor unions is that unions are for the workers. Unions are for unions, just as corporations are for corporations and politicians are for politicians.”

So what is the status quo the unions are fighting to keep by taking more money from teachers?

Dunkelberg: Should Unions Have the Power to Tax?

“The ’employers’ (taxpayers through their elected officials) have slowly lost their ability to determine the terms of employment offers. The unions now determine working hours, hiring criteria, the quantity of ‘output’ to be produced per day, the number of sick and vacation and holiday days, how their performance will be evaluated etc. No longer can the employer make an ‘offer’ for a job with requirements that fit the needs of the public institution.”

Andrew Klavan gives a good basic overview of how this situation and those like it managed to come about in this YouTube video.

So is Kasich the greatest thing since sliced bread?  Hell no.  He is, however, a vast improvement over his predecessor, whose economic strategies consisted mainly of kicking the can down the road and propping up the budget with Federal stimulus money to placate unions.  Kasich is taking at least some of the necessary steps to bring Ohio back from the brink if fiscal disaster.  Senate Bill 5 is not the first sign of the Apocalypse, it is a reality check.  Even Californians have started to notice that things have “gotten way out of hand.

Written by BornLib

April 25, 2011 at 10:46 am

Posted in Economics

Ironic sarcasm

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Another hat tip to KnightOfTheOldeCode on the BFA Forum:

Brent Larkin has penned an oh so smug anti-restaurant carry piece for The Plain Dealer.  Here is what I think of it:

“Bless today the itsy-bitsy hearts of Ohio Senate members so dedicated to making this state a safer place for us all.
And bless, too, the dozens of members of the Ohio House who, if given a chance, will join their 25 caring colleagues in the Senate in allowing gun-toting patrons to take their weapons into bars and restaurants that serve alcohol.

Larkin neglects to mention that “gun-toting patrons” are already allowed “to take their weapons into bars and restaurants that serve alcohol.”  Those patrons happen to be off-duty police officers.  But that’s okay, law enforcement obviously receive special training that make them immune to the effects of alcohol.

After all, we all know restaurants like Pizza Hut and Applebee’s can be dangerous places. So the legislature wants to make sure that, when gunfire erupts, concealed-carry permit holders will be there to restore order.”

Larkin’s sarcasm is entirely unwarranted.  There is nothing magical about a restaurant, as the following sample list of senseless slaughter should make clear:

Luby’s Cafeteria

Johnny’s Sports Bar

Luigi’s Restaurant

Yoyito’s Restaurant and Cafeteria


Captain D’s

Dunkin’ Donuts

Burger King and McDonald’s


“And in the rare event a mother and her children get caught in the crossfire? Well, sometimes defense of the Second Amendment can be a bit messy.”

Larkin seems to be one of those gun control types who believe that a mother and child being methodically executed by someone like George Pierre Hennard in a gun-free-zone are morally superior those killed in a gunfight.  He also seems to think that several minutes of an active shooter executing people uncontested will yield fewer innocent victims than an exchange of gunfire lasting seconds.  The police obviously don’t agree, since they shot Hennard when they arrived in the middle of his shooting spree.

“When it passed the guns-in-bars bill, the Senate was also quite clever in the way it tossed a couple bones to the anti-gun nuts. Whereas the zealots wanted an “opt in” provision requiring bar and restaurant owners to affirmatively welcome gun owners, senators gave the establishments the right to opt out — presumably by placing one of those tiny stickers on the door that few will see.”

The size of the sign or sticker is at the discretion of the owner.  Larkin is saying that either the owners are not competent enough to put a sign where it is visible, or are making them hard to see intentionally.  So these owners don’t want guns in their establishment, but won’t go to the effort to make sure people entering the establishment know this.  Yeah, that makes sense.

“Senators also prohibited permit holders who bring weapons into the bars and restaurants from drinking alcohol (wink, wink). After all, bars in Ohio are loaded with customers who sit for hours on end tossing down glasses of Diet Coke.”

So one to five years in prison for commuting a felony in the third degree is a “wink, wink.”  He also seems to be implying that the aforementioned off-duty law-enforcement officers can’t help but get plastered when they go armed into a restaurant or decide to enjoy some wings at the local sports bar.  Personally I prefer cranberry juice as my teetotaler’s bar drink of choice, but to each their own.

“But senators weren’t only clever. They were courageous.

Never does a day pass without Gov. John Kasich promising to make Ohio a business-friendly state. And because 25 senators know what’s best for business, they ignored the heated objections to this law from every single business that would be affected by the new law — not to mention law-enforcement groups.”

Yep, there is nothing business friendly about trying to bring back all the customers along the state’s border lost to restaurants in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Indiana, Kentucky, and West Virginia where no such ban exists.  Also, these are the same law-enforcement groups that testified that cops can drink because of the aforementioned special training that make them immune to the effects of alcohol.

“Richard Mason, lobbyist for the 5,000-member Ohio Restaurant Association, foolishly suggested that ‘alcohol and guns are not a good mix.’ And Jacob Evans, general counsel for the 1,000-member Ohio Licensed Beverage Association, was way out of line to claim, ‘This just doesn’t make any sense. There are some places in urban areas where this is just a recipe for disaster.'”

Funny how the forty two states, including all our aforementioned neighbors, that don’t have this kind of ban aren’t drowning in blood, even the ones that have “places in urban areas where this is just a recipe for disaster.”  It is almost like this is just another ‘chicken little’ argument that can’t be backed up with facts.

“As proof of how out of touch the restaurant and bar owners are on this issue, they actually made book with the lunatic fringe. Toby Hoover of the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence was nothing short of irrational, accusing some legislators of caring nothing about facts, but concerned only with ‘doing whatever the gun lobby tells them to do.'”

Dramatic irony: irony that is inherent in speeches or a situation of a drama and is understood by the audience but not grasped by the characters in the play.

There is more in the article but nothing worth commenting on.

Written by BornLib

April 24, 2011 at 7:39 pm

Posted in 2A, Restaurant Carry, Second Amendment

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