All posts by Carl Bussjaeger

Author: Net Assets, Bargaining Position, The Anarchy Belt, and more

“M-16”

Here we go again. Cue the calls for common sense “assault rifle” laws in three.. two… one…

Shooting at Bronx Lebanon Hospital in NYC, Multiple Injured
Authorities responded to the ‘active shooter’ situation just before 3 P.M. at the Bronx-Lebanon Hospital, which is about half an hour outside of Manhattan.

Police say the Bello was wearing a white lab coat, and was armed with an M-16 rifle when he opened fire on the 16th floor.

Another shooting, another — probably imaginary — machine gun.

Hmm… M16… where have we heard that before? Right; the Alexandria congresscritter shooting. Which out to be… not so much; a semi-auto SKS.

At this rate, I will not be surprised to — eventually — learn that the asshole used one of these.

But seriously: an M16? A machine gun? Not merely regulated in New York, but outright banned. If I took this report at face value, I’d be forced to conclude that regulation and bans don’t work at all.

Update: And it was apparently a New York legal AR, which means it isn’t even an “assault weapon” much less an assault rifle.

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Parents, explain something to me, please

While browsing news this morning, I ran across this screed. It’s in response to a woman — with an admitted anxiety disorder requiring treatment — wondering if she should ask about the presence of guns before sending her child away to a play date.

Dear Abby Says Asking About Guns In Homes Is ‘Off-Putting’
It is astonishing that in this day and age, when guns are the third leading cause of death for American children and we hear stories seemingly every other day about children getting access to adult’s guns, that anyone — let alone someone whose job is to give advice — would recommend that a parent be more concerned about not making another parent uncomfortable than about making sure their child is safe.

TL;DR is that Bland is shocked that possibly offending an acquaintance might take precedence over child safety “when guns are the third leading cause of death for American children.” (Which happens to be one of the latest lies being pushed by gun ban bunnies. They have to include gangbangers up to 24 years of age to get there.) But this is where I need some input from parents, since I’ve never been one.

Do you parents normally send your kids — I mean those too young to understand that guns aren’t toys — off to the homes of people you don’t know well enough to have a feel for how safe they are?

Do parents typically not teach their children not to screw around with other people’s property — guns, in this case — without permission?

Do parents encourage their children to hang out with other children who lack respect for people’s property?

As a non-parent, my experience is limited to my own childhood, observing friends and relatives with their children. Bog knows, my parents told me to stay away from certain kids and homes. None of my nieces, nephew, grand-nieces, grand nephew have even tried to get my — secured — firearms.

Or, going to some friends for example: I used to spend a fair bit of time with a couple with two young children, the oldest a boy about three years old at the time. Any time they had guns out for cleaning, they’d let the boy watch. And handle guns and parts under supervision. And all the while telling him about the Four Rules; conversationally rather than as a lecture, in simple language a 3y/o could grasp.

And to make sure he understood that guns can destroy things and people, we took him to the range. We fitted him with hearing and eye protection (which he wanted anyway, since the grown-ups were putting on their own). I set up a milk jug full of water on the target line, and shot it with .45 ACP (I believe I was usually running 185 gr. Federal Hydra-Shoks back then), as our young student watched.

He was impressed. I didn’t know eyes could get that wide.

To the best of my knowledge, he never ever “played” with a gun. Because he knew what they could do.

In another case, I attended a camping event which included a lot of shooting: a pistol competition, pistol and rifle classes, and near-continuous informal target practice. The camping area was on elevated ground, and there was a trail leading down to the valley where the range was set up with the firing line facing the other side of the valley.

Much of the time there was a five year-old boy parked at the trail head. Small .22 rifle slung on his shoulder (Chipmunk, I think, but can’t swear to), and a belt with pouches for his muffs, safety glasses, targets, and ammunition. Any time an adult approached the trail head, the youngster would speak up very politely. “Excuse me, sir. Are you going to the range?”

“Yep.”

“Could I go with you? I want to shoot, but my parents say I can only go to the range with an adult.”

So I took him to the range, since I also happened to know his father and knew the drill. That boy was one of the safest shooters I’ve seen; strict adherence to the Rules (not positive, but I think he might have been muttering the Four Rules to himself as we walked to the firing line). Not a bad shot either,

Because his entirely reasonable and responsible parents had taught him firearms safety and shooting. Is the circle of friends, family, and acquaintances I hang out with really that much more safety-aware than most parents?

A more general example: I live in a state where an estimated one in three people own guns (I think that’s pretty low, but we’re not the sort to tell strangers on the phone a lot of details). In my small town rural area, the anecdotal rate is more like 90%; most of the exceptions are military and Yankee transplantees who haven’t bought anything yet (although some have asked me for help on deciding what to buy). It seems to me that if fears of kids grabbing guns were the huge problem Ms. Bland and Mrs. Anxiety-meds believe, this county would have depopulated itself decades ago. It hasn’t, it’s growing, and I can’t recall the last accidental shooting by a minor, nor does a web search turn up anything.

So, real parents; who better represents reality? My responsible friends, or fearful folks being treated for anxiety?

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GOP Baseball Shooting: “More Laws!”

If one were to take early reporting seriously (which I haven’t done for decades), some angry white guy — probably a right-wing white supremacist — shot a bunch of congressmen with a full-auto M4 assault rifle. The asshole took advantage of Virginia’s “lax” gun laws to get and carry his assault rifle.

Umm… Not so much. One, maybe two congressmen. One, maybe two cops. One, maybe two staffers. Maybe a lobbyist. Reports on that still vary.

CNN would have us believe the — oops, rabid left-wing Bernie supporter — used a Chinese knock-off of the AK-47.

Oops redux. Again, not so much. Now it was an SKS.


Note the subtle differences between this and the AK-47 and M4.

So he had an IL FOID (background check), possibly a CCW (background check), and bought his 3 guns from an Illinois FFL (background check & waiting period, background check & waiting period, background check & waiting period). He used a knock-off of a WW2-era semi-auto rifle (apparently with a 10-round fixed magazine, since it was Illinois legal. Heck, it might even still be California legal. Not an “assault weapon,” much less an assault rifle.

I can hardly bear waiting for the calls for laws that wouldn’t have stopped this. Oh. Wait.

I didn’t have to wait.

But I apparently will have to wait on national reciprocal carry while Congress addresses DC reciprocal carry only for our betters masters congresscreeps

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In League with Evil

Perusing the news, I ran across this:

Urban League Calls For Lawmakers To Reject Gun Crimes Legislation
The Chicago Urban League has urged lawmakers not to pass legislation that would increase sentences for repeat gun offenders, saying it would only lead to more black people in prison and cost taxpayers millions, while not helping reduce violent crime.

They don’t want gun control laws that target the people convicted of crimes. That’s unfair. Lighter sentences for actual criminals are clearly the way to go.

Who does the Urban League see as the crime problem in Chicago? YOU; the victims and honest folks trying to stay alive — and unrobbed — while obeying the laws that make it harder to do so.

Yes, I know it’s old news to anyone who’s been paying the slightest bit of attention for the past few decades. But this juxtaposition of stories illustrates so well how socialist politicians and “urban” support groups are deliberately aligned with violent criminals against their chosen prey: you.

When they whine for more restrictive “common sense gun laws” to end “gun violence” — restrictions that lawfully cannot be imposed on real criminals — remember which brand of violence worries them: their prey fighting back.

To be fair, they don’t all want you dead. Some of these predators are fully aware that you can only shear a dead sheep once.

But the stupid and cannibalistic carnivores want lamb chops.

And victim-disarming pols and Urban League hunting clubs are working to make sure they get them.

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The ER Lost A Patient

I just spent the day at a hospital Emergency Room (for reasons worthy of another column, but this is the wrong venue for that one). What’s relevant to TZP is that while I was there, they lost a patient.

Don’t start with the sympathy yet. He didn’t die.

They lost him:

“Hey, have you seen [xyz]?”
“He went to the restroom.”
“I checked; he isn’t there.”
“Maybe he’s in the other one.”
{insert pitterpatter of sneakered feet}
“He’s not there either.”
“Where did he go?”
“I don’t know. Look.”

There’s garbled talk of hospital security (who eventually showed up to search) and the Sheriff’s department, who also showed up. People in scrubs running up and down the hall, looking in every room. Multiple times. Muttering which I took to be poorly suppressed profanities.

Mildly amusing, you may be thinking, along with, “What the heck does this have to do with self defense, the right to keep and bear arms, or any of the other things that interest The Zelman Partisans?”

Some of you might see where this is going, but I’ll explain anyway.

Thanks to HIPAA — not to mention hospital Public Relations — no one was going to tell me exactly what the fuss was. But I overheard some gossip between staffers and law enforcement.

It appears that Patient Werrdefuqdego was a transferee from the jail. Possibly a mentally disturbed transferee. An unrestrained transferee. -ding!-

And no one from the Sheriff’s department was watching him. -ding!-

Nor was the hospital staff keeping an eye him. -ding!-

In fact, they were letting him run around without a keeper — in a yellow gown, blanket worn like a skirt, and no shoes. -ding! ding!- (Yes, he was a peculiar sight, before dropping out of sight.)

Figured out the relevance yet? For visitors unfamiliar with the Constitution, but hooked on magical thinking: The hospital with an escaped loon — possibly dangerous — from the jail, who was left to roam at will, is a “gun-free” zone.

So with a potentially dangerous nut on the loose due to lack of give-a-sh!t on the part of the staff and LE, I was deprived of my usual defensive tool. True, I could have refused to leave my sidearm behind and told the hospital to blow it their appropriate orifice, or even refuse to go there in the first place. But for personal reasons (possibly appropriate for the aforementioned other column), not going, or getting busted for trespassing, wasn’t an option. I had to go, and under trespass law, I had to disarm myself.

“No problem,” might say the Constitutionally challenged magicians, “the cops and hospital security will protect you.”

Except they didn’t. They turned the loon loose. They didn’t warn me, nor did they hang around to guard me.

Tell me again how gun-free — helpless-target-rich — zones make me safer.

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How much training? And why?

In ransacking the news for the weekly newsletter, I ran across this letter to the editor which reminded me of a typically ban bunny tactic to make firearms less accessible to honest folk.

Support smart gun laws
On the other hand, I am appalled and always have been by the fact that only one hour of practice is required to get the permit.
[…]
When one picks up a gun and consciously gets a license, it is with the intent to defend yourself, up to and including killing another human being. It is a weapon more intense than an automobile, which requires many more hours of training before someone gets behind the wheel.

When I got my driver license 40 years ago, I had to pass a ten question — as best I recall — written test and a five minute road test. There was no mandatory classroom or road training back then.

My truck has several controls. Steering wheel, shifter, clutch pedal, accelerator pedal, brake pedal, parking brake, headlight switch, hi/lo switch, wiper switch, turn signal switch, dash light dimmer switch, emergency flasher switch. I won’t bother mentioning the rest which don’t relate directly to driving the vehicle safely. But for all that, ten questions and five minutes on the road. Training wasn’t mandated by law, but I undertook that on my own so I’d know how to work all those controls properly. It seemed the sensible thing to do. After all, I’d be operating a device with the kinetic energy of a small bomb while carrying a fuel tank with the chemical energy of a large bomb. Thousands more people die by automobile than by firearm in America.

My usual carry gun has a trigger, magazine release, and a slide lock/release. Note the lack of a steering wheel, because if you can point your finger you can point a pistol.

For that, gun controllers — when they deign to allow us to be armed at all — want us to — just as examples from bills I’ve seen over the years — 1) get a license to purchase a firearm, 2) undergo forty hours of classroom training, 3) sixteen hours of range training, 4) pass a hundred question written test, 5) pass a fifty round range test, 6) get fingerprinted, 7) get photographed, 8) pass a background check, and 9) get a judge’s permission to carry. In some places, not others.

Given the requirements for operating a potential weapon of mass destruction, the requirements for carrying a defensive tool with three controls seems.. a little excessive.

Someone planning to get a gun certainly should get some education and training. I did; some through military and law enforcement sources, and quite a bit more on my own, by my choice.

While I’ve never been a certified instructor, I have informally trained quite a few people. In a couple of hours or less I can get the basic laws regarding carry defensive shooting across to most people of normal intelligence. Then spend another half hour on the “four rules”, familiarization with the new shooter’s specific weapon, sight picture, trigger control (a little dry fire included). I’ve found that when the trainee starts live fire, 50% of them put the first round in center mass. quite a few do the same with the first full magazine. I don’t recall any who missed the silhouette. (As opposed to a law enforcement officer who routinely failed her annual weapons qualification because she couldn’t paper with a shotgun loaded with 00 buckshot at twenty yards. The only time I routinely wore my ballistic vest was when I had to be on the range with her. Another officer tried to buy it from me when he heard she was coming.)

The simple fact is that that defensive handguns are designed to be operated without a huge amount of training.* Clueless “useful idiots” in the gun control camp may not realize that, but their leadership does. The mandates are only intended to restrict honest people’s right to self defense.

Train, yes. Mandated unreasonable, restrictive requirements, no.


* Design is what matters, not mechanical simplicity. A broadsword has no moving parts, the only “control” is the hilt. Yet a new would-be swordfighter might require days or weeks of training before I’d let him armor up fully and engage in a regular full speed bout. Swords are mechanically simple, yet difficult to master. This is why medieval Japan banned firearms; too many highly trained-samurai-backed tax collectors were getting killed by peasants with those newfangled guns.

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Ideal Conceal Update

I got another update email from Ideal Conceal. For those of you who’ve forgotten this because it’s been so long since they said the gun would be available yet never appeared, this is the “cell phone gun.”

Nothing in this update gives me any reason to believe the thing is not vaporware at best. But I see that Ideal Conceal finally got a Type 07 Manufacturer FFL. I guess the Big Lake FFL friend Kjellberg said would do the manufacturing wanted no part of this. Which might explain why I was unable to find an Type 07 FFL there who would admit to being involved. But the address given is an office building that still listed as “for sale.” I wonder if the ATF has inspected his shop, and if it was there or at his home.

For the longest time, the pistol was computer renderings and photoshopped stock images. Then it was a 3D-printed inop model. After that, it supposedly became real, but failed in testing. All along, they’d announce new, pushed back availability dates. And finally stopped giving dates.

In this new video, seemingly recorded in Kjellberg’s home (we never see shop facilities; I wonder why), we learn that they seem to have abandoned 3D printing, and possibly abandoned the injection molding we heard about in March. Now it’s machined. We’re treated to blurry video of printed out photos of what are alleged to be machined parts (enough for 10 guns) and a print-out of a computer rendering of the fire control assembly.

One commenter said:

It would be nice to have an actual projection of when we should expect to see the product finished and for sale! This process is really dragging out without a real commencement date. Disappointing to say the least.

Which is pretty reasonable. When the company has claimed that it was taking orders, it’s fair for folks to wonder what frickin’ year this thing might ship. If ever. Kjellberg disagrees:

Wondering how many projects you have taken from a thought to a napkin to production? We are just a couple of people, not a big company. Also if you watched the video, we started over in January to give you the best product. Perhaps this looks easy, but to make a light, tight pistol and do it on a tight budget takes time.

Funny thing: I worked on a project for a telecom company; low-voltage monitors for remote site alarm monitoring. With about for people, we went from the idea, to a circuit schematic, to designed final product in an enclosure, parts ordering,through assembly (including etching circuit boards ourselves), followed by field testing, production, and delivery of 100% tested units to the field. In about three months.*

We were able to do that because we knew what we were doing, and intended to deliver a real product. Kjellberg and Ideal Conceal? I’m thinking not so much on either count.

Designing a gun does take time. But do you think John Browning took advance orders from 4,000 retail customers before he finalized the 1911 design?

On the other hand… In Browning’s 71 years, he designed at least 39 firearms that went into full production. Assuming he started designing the day he was born, that’s an average of 1.8 years per design. In fact, he started learning in his dad’s shop at 7, so the average comes down to 1.6 years per design. Kjellberg is at 1.1 years in designing a basic derringer and counting.


* Heh. That was twenty-something years back. I still have the schematic, BOM, and installation instructions. Looks like I lost the circuit board mask, though.

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UPDATED: Who is playing who?

UPDATE, 5/3/2017, 3:42 PM EDT: Rock River Arms and Springfield Armory have both issued press releases disavowing the IFMA’s actions and have withdrawn from the association.

That’s a good start.



Original post:
In dueling headlines between two RKBA-oriented web sites, we see some interesting views regarding Rock River Arms, Springfield Armory, their lobbying group Illinois Firearms Manufacturers Association, and an Illinois bill intended to discourage gun dealers by running up their operating expenses.

Springfield Armory, Rock River Arms Trade Opposition to Illinois FFL Licensing Scheme for Carve-Out
Earlier today, the Illinois State Senate passed bill SB-1657 by a one-vote margin. While its prospects are still unsure in the House, if signed by Governor Bruce Rauner, the new law will mandate state licensing for all Illinois gun dealers. It will also restrict all others in Illinois to nine firearm transfers per year.

The lobbyist for the Illinois Firearms Manufacturers Association (IFMA), Jay Keller, traded that group’s opposition to the bill in exchange for a carve-out, removing Prairie State firearms manufacturers from the licensing requirements.

This hit the news first, and Second Amendment-minded gun owners were understandably upset. Then we heard “the rest of the story.”

Put Away The Pitchforks: Springfield Armory & Rock River Arms Did NOT Sell Out Gun Owners
If true, then the Illinois Firearms Manufacturers Association (IMFA) alone is to blame for the group’s decision to remove opposition to the bill, and early assertions made by another firearms news site claiming that Springfield Armory and Rock River Arms directly and intentionally screwed over the citizens of their state as well as smaller manufacturers and gun dealers, would almost appear to be libelous.

If true, I would suspect someone bought off the lobbyist. However, I would not consider the claims that the manufacturers screwed the shooting community libelous because the claims were based on the actions of a group that officially bills itself as speaking for those manufacturers.

“But wait! There’s more!”

Springfield Armory & Rock River Arms Made Campaign Contributions to Anti-Gun Rights Politicians
We can now reveal that Springfield and Rock River have, through IFMA, donated tens of thousands of dollars to Illinois anti-gun politicians over the last several years.

If all this is correct, then it’s possible Rock River’s and Springfield’s lobbyist has been suckering them. For years. Or IFMA may well have been positioning them for special privileges all along. In which case, the investment paid off when they were exempted from the draconian terms of SB-1657.

I expect another salvo of defensive press releases from the companies and and IFMA. Hopefully, they’ll clarify matters.

America does not enjoy actual free-market capitalism. Government intervention makes industry lobbying a necessity. Companies should take advantage of most lawful means of protecting themselves. But…

Companies should not throw their sister companies and customers under the bus in the process.

If Rock River and Springfield really want to “clarify” this in a way that doesn’t get them Smith & Wessoned, I suggest that they disavow their lobbyist, file suit for fraud, and announce that they will not sell firearms to any Illinois law enforcement agency should this bill — or any other similar bill — somehow pass, a la Ronnie Barrett and apparently a few dozen other companies.

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Poll: Rate Trump’s first 100 days of RKBA

When Donald Trump first started campaigning for President, many people were dubious of his new-found commitment to the right to keep and bear arms given his history on the subject: gun bans, preemptively prove your innocence, waiting periods, and more.

But once he hit the campaign trail he started talking a good game. The question was, could he walk as well as talk?

One hundred days in, he’s still talking, but he has also done some good things like ending the Social Security abuse. On the other hand, Obamacare 2.0 attempts still have RKBA problems, federal gun-free zone requirements are still there, and his Second Amendment advisory group is vaporware.

Since everyone else is rating Trump’s first 100 days in office, how would you rate him on RKBA?


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Full Auto Stupidity?

Being the suspicious type, this anti-RKBA publicity stunt… automatically raised a few questions in my mind.

TN Dem Sets Up Stand to Prove It’s Easy to Sell a Gun, No One Buys Gun
On April 5, Tennessee Democrats tweeted a video of House Democratic Caucus leader Mike Stewart (D-52) trying to prove how easy it is to sell a gun by offering an AK-47 for sale at a lemonade stand. The video ran just over 48 mins and no one bought the gun.

It’s been suggested that he bought the weapon through an illegal straw purchase since he seemingly purchased with the intent to resell. That is probably unlikely as he claims it was a private purchase (and did he voluntarily undergo a background check?). But… he was advertising that as an “AK-47”. I have not found any manufacturer that calls a semi-auto AK variant an “AK-47.” The AK-47 is a specific model of assault rifle (the real deal- full auto capable), and an NFA item.

So forget straw purchase. Was it an AK variant such as a WASR-10C, or an AK-47?

  • If it’s an semi-auto variant, he may have committed fraud in false advertising by offering it an as AK-47.
  • One could also suggest that — semi-auto or AK-47 — his offer to sell a supposed NFA item without background checks is illegal.
  • In the unlikely event that the weapon is an NFA item (for $700? Nah.), he offered to transfer it without background checks or tax stamps. And when was it made; post 1986?

All this may sound like nitpicking, but these are just the sort of existing laws that victim disarming police statists use against honest (and licensed) dealers, not to mention their customers. In a country where “equal protection under the law” is supposedly part of the highest law of the land, Stewart should face the same consequences for his actions as would anyone less blessed (and Democratic), or admit that those laws are purely for harassment and to infringe on Second Amendment-protected rights.

Hmm… Does anyone know if Tennessee’s Capitol Hill is a designated gun-free zone? Not that it would matter for someone hell-bent on violating your human/civil rights. But that might be a contributing factor in his failure to sell that AK-whatever: possibly smarter folks knew better than to take possession of a firearm in that location.

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