Thursday, October 3, 2013

Training Has Not Made Police Safer with a Weapon

      What happened at the White House today with the chase, shooting and killing of a woman who slammed her car into the White House barricades is instructive for several reasons. It seems senseless to try to ram a car through barricades designed to repel just such an act, for one. Go around, idiot. Go around, to borrow from B. Cosby. When the cops decide to shoot they exercise that military cliche', kill 'em all. Let God sort 'em out. Check lockers for that T-shirt. Firearms training for cops either doesn't stick, isn't very good or unintentionally enables the gunslinger found in some cops.
      In D.C., L.A., N.Y., and who knows how many other towns and cities cops can't hit what they're shooting at, don't care what they might and do hit and seem to think the badge gives them the power and right to spray and pray out in a very public place.
       It seems that the one correct move the cops made today was that this car had to be stopped. A speeding car, possibly loaded with explosives, chemical or biological weapons leaves No time to assess the situation for purposes of bringing a dangerous situation to a peaceful conclusion. Even though the cops handled their weapons very poorly, the judgement to use them in the heat of the moment was more than likely the correct one.
        If the numerous examples of police mishandling of firearms is an indication of the resulting safety, then formal training will not make the private bearing of firearms any safer. I contend that the training, badge, uniform and attending authority brings out the gunslinger in most cops. Instead of making them more careful, it makes them go a bit wild. Why would that be? Because the consequences of a legal but wholly unsafe use of a firearm has only minor repercussions.
    Unlike the repercussions of a private citizen who, for perfectly defensible reasons, brandishes and fires even one shot, even finding its mark, God help you if you miss and hit an innocent, a cop who shoots an innocent during a legal use of his weapon is usually immune to any criminal prosecution or civil liability.
      What then prompts a rare post from Naut Right? The gun grabbers persistent demands that private gun owners must undergo training to a level somewhat like the police, that's what prompts this post. The liability of private citizens acts as a brake on gunslinger attitudes. Maybe even the relative legal safety of an attacker is a factor in prompting a considerable reluctance of the private citizen to use firearms in self defense. The Martin-Zimmerman case reflects that phenomena. A cop is not immune to human impulses because of firearms training. As previously stated, a set of circumstances unique to police work seem to prompt quite an opposite effect once a justifiable use of a weapon is decided upon, than the training intends, which is a careful use of firearms. 
      Therefore firearms training isn't the panacea for the safety concerns of the gun grabbers. It only acts as a screening device, taking put those who can't afford the money or time to get the training. The cops prove it more than occasionally. 
       Let's push back on their demands for training that doesn't impact the problem. Let's flesh out and refine the narrative that the present legal environment supplies the private citizen with the necessary brake upon any tendencies to go all gunslinger and tame the wild west. 

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The One Reason for the Second

The Second Amendment reads: A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

The security of a free state is often found with State capitalized in older references and in the original.

The special purpose of the Second is to guarantee to the citizenry, each in his or her own capacity the right to fend off armies both foreign amd domestic. You see a direct refernce to that another place in the constitution, in the original Article I. The famous gun case called Miller had court dicta that said arms used for military purposes were protected. 

The other rights under the umbrella of the Second; the right to hunt, to a personal form of self-defense, to collect firearms, to engage in shooting sports are also covered, quite adequately, under the Ninth Amendment. Even if the Second did not exist, these ancillary rights under the Second would be covered. 

To make a special emphasis, the Second guarantees the citizens the right to maintain war making powers. It is only by that ability can a free State be secure. Do not be misled, duped or worse become an unwitting dupe of the anti-gunners or the well meaning but timid gun supporters who rest their case on self-defense or hunting. 

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Don't Fix Obamacare

   The howls of protest are coming in about the law nobody read. Here are two links about that:
Key Democrats Turn on Obamacare and this one, New Taxes Bourne by Small Business;Legislation to Repeal

Republicans should spurn efforts to tweak Obamacare. This was the bill that had to be passed, that nobody read and now nobody wants. Republicans should not lend the bill the slightest shade of merit by tweaking it, as though there is an overarching merit in it, in the main.

Let the whole weight of what Obama and the Democrats and Chief Justice Roberts has wrought fall on the country. It will only be through the pain of their mistakes that Republicans will have a chance at complete repeal.

Republicans need to say it clearly and without apology that this law will go into full force, as written, without amendment OR it will be repealed. The all or nothing at all approach is what the Democrats offered. Let them live with it.

The Glue that Holds Establishment Republicans and Democrats Together

The Tea Party is to establishment Republicans and Democrats alike what Michael Milliken and other hostile takeover artist were/are to bloated businesses. Politics is the business. To stoke business the pendulum of public opinion has to be shoved from time to time. That happens by taking government to the extremes. The Tea Party would severely dampen the swaying to extremes by limiting the movement of government. Can't have that. Money would flow out of the business of politics.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

How Should Republicans Govern the Next Four Years

I am writing five days after the November 6th election. Reading as much of the post-election analysis as my time admits I can't help but wonder how the Republicans in the House, Senate and in the state held offices might try to govern in light of the re-election of Barack Obama and the retention of the Senate by the Democrats.

Only a few items come to mind. In no particular order, the States should muscle up their 10th Amendment rights. The coercive scheme in place between the state and federal government that has gone on for decades should be challenged. States are co-equal units of government with more authority over a larger scope of government responsibility than is commonly known. Time for a few trips to the woodshed behind the supreme court.

The House of Representatives needs to understand the reasons that the House was designed with two features that are unlike their counterparts in the Senate and the other branch, the Executive. Those are popular vote and power of the purse. The popular vote, coming every two years as it does, was a means of keeping government close to the will of the people. It is the design for true self-government. The Senate gets six year terms and are voted in statewide which can be an effective insulator from the will of the people. The Executive being chosen nationally for four years is also insulated from a close association with the people.

The other feature in the Constituion designed for the House of Representatives is the power of the purse. All bills containing provisions to tax or spend must originate in the House. This power is designed to direct the efforts of the government to the will of the people. The current house leadership exercises this power somewhat weakly. When the Speaker says that the House cannot pass a budget without the concurrence of the Senate and President he is correct. When he says he must bend to their will he is not correct. That may be the compromising way to sign a budget into law but it is not a requirement that the House needs to compromise. The House can and should hold the government hostage to its budgetary and tax policy direction. Its a duty they have as evidenced by the power they were given.

The Executive function is to carry out the will of the people as expressed through their House representatives. The Senate function is not to trump the House but to curb its tendencies to extremes. When either the Senate or the Executive attempt to co-opt the power of the House to set tax and spend policy it is the duty of the House to shut government down pending a return to their rightful duties, the Senate and Executive. This also ought to be the check designed to curb the power grabs of the bureaucracy. The House is the protectorate branch of the people. The Senate is the protectorate branch of the States. The Executive is the protectorate branch of the political entity called the United States. The constitution empowers each to be able to fulfill their duty and checks them each from usurping the powers of the others, provided the others jealously guard their powers. 

Its up to the House to protect us during the next four years.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

The Socialist Agenda Behind Gay Marriage

Over at Lew Rockwell is an article by one Scott Lazarowitz titled The Right to Marry. Here is an excerpt from his article that, I think, best sums up his opinion,
And in my opinion, there should be complete separation of marriage and state. No one should have to get a license issued by government bureaucrats to marry. It is not the business of the government to permit or forbid a private individual to establish one’s own private contracts voluntarily
Read the whole thing. It's pretty short. The Lew Rockwell site carries an eclectic assortment of articles with a heavy anti-statist bent. They vary from the delusional or conspiritorial to the reasonable or cautionary. I especially enjoy the bottom of the daily list that are devoted to health related matters and self defense weaponry and tactics. This article sets within the anti-statist category. However, it fails to make the anti-statist case, remarkably and I feel compelled to call out the author to either bolster his position or abendon it. If he is anti-statist and he reads my emails he will have no honor if he doesn't abandon his position. I responded in two back to back emails which I will paste in their entirety, below.
To make your case, a one track reliance on rights isn't going to be convincing. Don't read into that an inferral that you are not right. There are some matters of family law that, being heavily affected by a change of this kind, require answers. How would you deal with other formulations of marriage if family law extended all the benefits of the social contract as it is, not as you wish it to be, as they would impact public expenditures? How would you deal with private contract disruptions that extend benefits to marriage as it is currently formulated after new formulations add substantially to the beneficiary pool? How would you, or would you, rationalize marriage into only two sets; hetero and homo? Why not poly, incestuous, bestial, extended family, extended family poly, pediophiliactic marriage formulations? Are there legal or moral or economic "laws" that would remain enforceable once you open this pandora's box to limit the formulations?  Or would you not fret and let all comers enter? Not to say there are no answers, nor that you are unable to provide them, but they're not in that article. Hence, its useless as a workable guide to changing family law. You extend rights into others' areas of obligation, initially taxpayers and employers, without balancing their rights. Sincerely, Mike Mahoney in IN
Sorry to return so quickly, before I even give you a moment to consider a response. But, I left a glaring ommission with huge consequences out of my other letter. The universal plea of the gay community is not to have a private right to marry as there is no state sanction against private marriage now. No, rather it is to have confirred on the marriage all, public and private by state sanction via equal rights and/or due process the benefits of heterosexual marriage onto new formulations of marriage. It is an undeniable demand made universally by the gay community and its supporters. In other words, you want them to be able to extend their private right, as it exists now, into the public realm. This is the opposite of what you wrote and it is the way the gay community wants it. They do not want a mere PRIVATE right to marry. They want it to be PUBLIC POLICY, MARRIED TO FAMILY LAW! They want to extend and expand the welfare state in their behalf. So within the confines of your article, either you are being disingenious or devious. There are other worse options I won't ascribe until I read your response. Really, you have a tough row to hoe. Sincerely, Mike Mahoney in IN

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Why Richard Lugar Lost His Senate Seat

How, in 2012, does a venerated, accomplished, well liked conservative Republican lose his seat of 36 years in the Red state primary of Indiana? Conventional wisdom is saying he wasn't conservative enough. By pointing to a few voting missteps and some bipartisan friendships the spinners of conventional wisdom plucked the obvious explanation. There's more to it than that. If the Republicans recognize the what else part of the reason, they'll see something more profound, though not complicated. Senator Lugar was elected 4 years before Ronald Reagan. In a way he could claim to be a predecessor to Reagan and the Reagan style of Republican governing. That style is a blend of pragmatism, business acumen, and being results oriented. Lugar has hardly budged from that style, in spite of a few votes that infuriated me. It served him and the country well up until about 2000. Its taken 12 years, then for something to cause a tipping point. If the senator hasn't changed, what has? Back in '76 a conservative elected to office of any shade from pink to scarlet was going to be an improvement over the FDR stlye of blue, social democrat that had dominated American politics for a half century. Lugar was good and red. Funny how red used to denote communism and now we use the election map colors the MSM put on states on election night to describe the voting trends that night. But I digress. Lugar was and is a good conservative. His ratings by various watchdog NGO's make it all too plain. By a measure of static historical reflection, Lugar should have been a shoe in. No Republican in the state could seriously have expected yesterday's defeat by looking over their shoulder at Lugar's past record or election results. Eventually, even Lugar sensed that the rise of the Tea Party was going to present a challenge. Lugar must have believed that he could easily weather the challenge based upon his record. He failed to sense that the Republican electorate had recognized a weakness in the garden variety conservative. Further, that the democrats were exploiting it to great advantage and repeated victories. Lugar labeled his opponent's biggest support group, the Tea Party as extreme. The Tea Party embraced the label if only notionally. There was one extreme difference between Lugar and the Tea Party. What Lugar either failed to realize or acknowlege was that the Democrats in particular and government in general were eating their lunch in legislative negotiations because the two sides were operating in agreement on a basic, underlying principle. That principle was that there should be no limiting principle to what government does and only slightly less, embraced that the means ought to have no limit. The disagreements were on details. This resulted in unrestrained growth and police powers of the state. Lugar styled Republicans were wedded to the idea that they could eventually talk sense into the deliberative process. It wasn't working. Republicans had held the reigns of power twice since 2000 and each time executed an overreach of their own design. Each time earning a smackdown from the electorate. The new Republicans had woken up. They discovered the weakness and the cure. Lugar wouldn't take the medicine; constitutionalism. That's the straw that broke the camel's back. Once the Republican elecorate rediscovered the source of a limiting principle, saw it in application in our early history and surmised it still the best fit for what ails the nation, Lugar's fate was sealed. He lived and died a pragmatist. He either failed to recognize or refused to believe that the Democratic acceptance of pragmatism divorced from limiting principles were ruining the country. Further, that they were using his own method of governing against us and him. If he were simply duped, realized it and refocused he would be our nominee, still. When it became clear that the constitution wasn't in Lugar's political DNA that sealed his fate as senator. The times demand fealty to the limiting principles, extracted from the dillutions of history and case law. Richard Lugar couodn't even see it coming. The rest of you, take note. ectorate