Cope Reynolds, who took out a full-page ad banning Obama voters from entering his gun store, has seen his business boom since his “ban” received national media attention:

“People are saying that I’ve alienated half of our customers,” Reynolds said, laughing. “No, I haven’t. I haven’t alienated any of my customers, because the people who voted for Obama don’t buy guns here. They don’t come here at all. I haven’t alienated. I’ve improved things. I have packages sitting on my desk to be shipped to places like Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Idaho, Nevada and California.”

Online ammunition stores such as and big box retailers like Walmart saw their shelves emptied within hours of the election, with the most common militarily useful calibers — 9mm, .45 ACP, .223 Remington, 5.56 NATO, and 7.62x39mm — sometimes almost doubling in price before being sold out. Distributors have not been able to keep pace with demand, and even retailers that buy hundreds of thousands or even millions of rounds of ammunition at a time have little in reserve. Almost a month after the election, prices are still high, and many preferred loadings for common calibers are still difficult to acquire.

Perhaps even more telling about these times is that the guns that are selling aren’t among those typically targeted by gun bans. Semi-automatic firearms such as AR-15s and AK-pattern rifles are always among the first targeted by gun banners and among the first picked up by gun purchasers worried about possible bans. But other firearms, from .22LR rifles and pistols to revolvers, shotguns, and bolt-action rifles in hunting calibers are also flying off the shelves, suggesting other dynamics are in play.

Sales of pump-action shotguns and handguns — close-in defensive weapons — strongly suggest that citizens do not trust their government to protect them against criminals.

There is more going on that we can easily diagnose, but at the root of it is the fear of a country on the verge of spinning out of control.