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FAA Empowers Hamas, Sets Stage for Israel’s Long Term Win

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014 - by Susan L.M. Goldberg

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A loser in the PR battle, Hamas decided to move their international offense to a new front today. Taking advantage of the Malaysian airliner downed by pro-Russian rebels, Hamas is now targeting air traffic entering Israel. Israel National News reports:

A rocket hit a home in the city of Yehud, near the airport, on Tuesday morning. Having failed to cause significant casualties due to Israel’s extensive defense systems, Gaza terrorists have focused rocket fire on the area in hopes of disrupting Israeli air travel.

Delta Air Lines was the first to suspend service, rerouting an Israel-bound flight with 273 passengers and 17 crew members to Paris, as if France is really a safer place for Israel lovers right now. Not long after, the Federal Aviation Administration barred flights to Israel for 24 hours. Air Canada, Lufthansa, Air France, KLM and Turkish Air followed suit. The State Department (whose official tweeted #UnitedforGaza this past weekend) rushed to clarify that the FAA’s move was “in no way politically motivated”.

Israel’s Transportation Minister released the following statement in response to the flight cancellations, rightly observing:

“Ben Gurion Airport is safe — takeoffs and landings — and there is absolutely no need to be concerned about the security of planes and passengers. There’s absolutely no reason why American airlines in particular should stop their flights and thus hand a prize to terrorism.”

The brash action of Hamas may have larger ramifications than even they realize. Analysts are already commenting on the long term impact of the airline safety concerns:

The implications are enormous. Whether intended or not, Hamas has made the case as to why its rocket arsenal and infrastructure must be dismantled no matter the cost. It also has justified why Israel cannot give up security control of Judea and Samaria (the “West Bank”). Hamas has to fire a long way to scare away air traffic, but from the West Bank it’s practically a stone’s throw.

Regardless of how Israel chooses to handle the West Bank, the actions taken by Hamas today have made two things very clear: Hamas has no problem holding America and the rest of the world hostage, and right now Israel is the free world’s last, best and only hope.

 

 

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How Israel is Winning the PR Battle Against Hamas

Monday, July 21st, 2014 - by Susan L.M. Goldberg

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Moral equivalence is dead. When Bill Clinton, the “international community”-blessed architect of Oslo, can blatantly declare

In the short and medium term Hamas can inflict terrible public relations damage by forcing (Israel) to kill Palestinian civilians to counter Hamas. But it’s a crass strategy that takes all of our eyes off the real objective which is a peace that gets Israel security and recognition and a peace that gets the Palestinians their state.

it is obvious that Hamas has finally shot themselves in the foot with the terrorists’ ideological weapon of choice. So, why do news agencies insist on reporting nothing more than body counts in evening news reports, as if the latest conflict between the Israelis and Palestinians is nothing more than a sports game?

Clinton may be a pervert, but he isn’t stupid. He acknowledged the “public relations” battle because he knows that the press follows the cues given by Hamas, the terrorist organization that holds reporters in Gaza against their will. Unless they have the intellect of toddlers, these reporters cannot be blind to the brainwashing from birth that turns children into human shields. Nor can they be so totally blind to the rocket launchers hiding behind schools and mosques in residential neighborhoods. Yet, the best they can muster is a body count followed by sarcastic commentary like that of CNN’s Ben Wedeman: “There is no Iron Dome in Gaza to protect civilians.” Amazing. Toddler Ben gets a gold star for that stellar observation.

As my PJMedia colleague Ron Radosh so excellently pointed out, the intellectuals also have no problem fettering mainstream media with arguments of moral equivalence. All they need is the right costume and a little bathtub gin and they could easily chatter the night away as if they were on the porch of Gatsby’s mansion. That is how comfortable they are turning an international war against Islamic terrorism into the banal “one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter” claim. Like America’s “restless” President, these politicos prefer the comforts of today’s Weimar. No doubt they are taking fiddling lessons so they can be fully prepared when Rome begins to burn.

There is a reality on the ground that escapes the Hamas-controlled media: Israel loves life. Israel’s policy is to warn Palestinian civilians (or, as Hamas calls them, weapons in Operation Human Shield) to get out of the way before they drop bombs or conduct ground invasions. Israel sets up field hospitals to treat wounded Gazans. We know about these things because, much to the chagrin of the death-loving Hamas, they cannot control the Internet. Just as Israelis are winning the ground offensive, Israel-supporters are winning the ideological offensive through alternative news sources and, most importantly, social media.

This past Saturday, 200 anti-Israel protesters fell to the ground in Boston in a “die-in” meant to demonstrate the number of Palestinians who have been killed thus far in Operation Protective Edge. A number of Israel supporters attended the event and were cornered by the anti-Israel crowd. One Zionist, Chloe Valdary told the Times of Israel:

We really do manage to disrupt them and distract them when we show up. We show up and it’s in the media, so the public sees how hate-filled and incredibly deluded these Hamas supporters are.

We’ve caught onto the PR game and we play to win. Now it is our turn to Tweet with a smile and watch as the death-obsessed Hamas-brainwashed fools fall and take their wretched canard of moral equivalency down with them.

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A Tale of Two Victims

Thursday, July 17th, 2014 - by Howard Nemerov

In San Bernardino, CA, two armed thugs attacked a 78-year-old great-grandfather gassing up his truck. Video shows one attacker walking up and blind-siding him as he tries to negotiate, knocking him out. Then they robbed him while he’s on the ground.

After the attack, he spent four days in the hospital and was treated for a broken nose, concussion and bleeding on the brain.

“It’s the lowest of low,” said Lt. Rich Lawhead of the San Bernardino Police Department, which released the surveillance video in hopes of identifying the robbers. “They didn’t appear to be nervous in any way, shape or form. And they’re only going to get more and more brazen. [Emphasis added]

“Eventually, somebody’s going to get killed,” he added.

Meanwhile, in Milwaukee, WI:

A Milwaukee nurse who shot an attempted carjacker likely helped break up a criminal ring that police believe has been involved in a string of robberies and carjackings as well as a recent shooting.

Two teenagers threatened to shoot her if she didn’t comply. They didn’t expect their victim to be a concealed carry licensee. She shot one attacker, and the other ran off. According to police, the wounded attacker “allegedly shot a 43-year-old man in the face as the man drove away in his Land Rover following another attempted carjacking.”

Had this woman not been armed…

Detroit Police Chief James Craig doesn’t mince words about the differences between armed law-abiding citizens and disarmed law-abiding prey.

Criminals are getting the message that good Detroiters are armed and will use that weapon,” said Craig, who has repeatedly said he believes armed citizens deter crime. “I don’t want to take away from the good work our investigators are doing, but I think part of the drop in crime, and robberies in particular, is because criminals are thinking twice that citizens could be armed.

In California, though theoretically possible, a regular person can’t get a concealed carry license in many counties, especially those most heavily populated, where violence is more common. So California criminals needn’t be “nervous in any way, shape or form.” This civil rights violation is so egregious that the Ninth Circuit Court struck down California’s law.

As an ex-California resident, I love living in Texas, where you’re treated more like a citizen, and the gangbangers drive more politely.

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Detroit Police Chief Credits Armed Homeowners with Reducing Crime

Thursday, July 17th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

Detroit Police Chief James Craig doesn’t sound like most other big city police chiefs.

Most union-heavy police bosses tout gun control despite the fact that the cities with the strictest gun laws also tend to have the most gun-related crime. Chief Craig sees things very differently.

According to the Detroit News, the city has suffered 37% fewer robberies in 2014 versus 2013, 22% fewer break-ins of businesses and homes, and 30% fewer carjackings. Chief Craig believes that armed citizens are at least part of the answer.

“Criminals are getting the message that good Detroiters are armed and will use that weapon,” Chief Craig told the News. “I don’t want to take away from the good work our investigators are doing, but I think part of the drop in crime, and robberies in particular, is because criminals are thinking twice that citizens could be armed.

“I can’t say what specific percentage is caused by this, but there’s no question in my mind it has had an effect,” Craig said.

This is not the first time that Chief Craig has touted armed citizens as an answer to crime. Back in January Craig praised citizens who have concealed firearm carry permits help deter crime, based on his own professional experience.

“When we look at the good community members who have concealed weapons permits, the likelihood they’ll shoot is based on a lack of confidence in this Police Department,” Craig said at the time.

Craig said he started believing that legal gun owners can deter crime when he became police chief in Portland, Maine, in 2009.

“Coming from California (Craig was on the Los Angeles police force for 28 years), where it takes an act of Congress to get a concealed weapon permit, I got to Maine, where they give out lots of CCWs (carrying concealed weapon permits), and I had a stack of CCW permits I was denying; that was my orientation.

“I changed my orientation real quick. Maine is one of the safest places in America. Clearly, suspects knew that good Americans were armed.”

 

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BREAKING: Reports Indicate Israel Agrees to Ceasefire

Monday, July 14th, 2014 - by Susan L.M. Goldberg

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After an unprecedented day of attacks from 4 fronts, Sinai, Lebanon, Syria and Gaza, reports indicate that the Israeli government has agreed to an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire.

The Jewish Week reports:

Israeli media is now reporting that Israel has agreed to an Egyptian draft ceasefire proposal. Hamas has not yet replied, but there are hints it may agree.

According to the proposal: There were would be de-escalation of the fighting beginning at 9 a.m. Israel time that would last for 12 hours. That would be followed by a ceasefire for 48 hours. Then delegations from Israel and Hamas would travel to Cairo for peace talks.

Israel has not rejected it, according to the media reports, because this war is seen as an achievement for Israel because it will have ended without Israel suffering any serious damage.

If Hamas were to reject it, Israel then would have international legitimacy to widen the war, according to analysts quoted in the Israeli press.

Early analysis published at the Times of Israel indicates that a deal is unfavorable to Hamas:

…there is some language providing for the opening of the border crossings, and an  easing of movement of people and goods via those crossings as permitted by the  security situation. But that language is almost a direct repetition of the  November 2012 ceasefire terms that brought Operation Pillar of Defense to a  close. Time and again, Hamas’s leaders have been stressing in recent days that “there will be no return to the 2012 ceasefire terms.”

However, Israel’s willingness to accept the ceasefire pins the terrorist organization into a tight corner in the international scene:

Hamas’s problem is that if it rejects the Egyptian proposal it will find itself  unprecedentedly isolated in the international community and the Arab world.  Cairo will accuse it of torpedoing the opportunity for calm, and Jerusalem  will have the legitimacy to mount a ground offensive into Gaza.

…And what of the Netanyahu government? It would seem that most members of the  security cabinet recognize that the Egyptian proposal represents a fair  achievement for Israel, and a significant failure for Hamas.

Will Israel only be pushing off the inevitable, or worse in seeking to negotiate with Hamas? Or is this merely a move by Netanyahu’s government to increase international support for a full-fledged military operation? With an unwilling partner in the White House, and an unlikely negotiating partner in Egypt, only time – or terrorists – will tell.

Update: 6 hours into the unilateral ceasefire, during which time Hamas fired 50 rockets into Israel, Israel has resumed strikes on Gaza. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has condemned Hamas for not accepting the ceasefire. Has Bibi called Hamas’ bluff?

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Americans Also Targets in Hamas Attacks

Sunday, July 13th, 2014 - by Susan L.M. Goldberg

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The above news clip represents what the average American hears on a daily basis regarding Operation Protective Edge, the latest military spate in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that has been going on (officially) since 1948. In the span of the 2 minute report, the Palestinian civilian casualties in Gaza were mentioned 3 times. What was not mentioned: These civilians have been instructed by their Hamas government to ignore the flyers and phone calls from the Israeli Defense Forces warning citizens to get out of the way of impending rocket attacks in their areas.

While an Israeli mother putting her baby to sleep in a bomb shelter is included in the report, what the reporter didn’t bother to tell you are the number of Israelis currently being hospitalized for shock. Nor did the report include the fact that this is just another day for the residents of Sderot, who’ve received a constant barrage of rockets since Israel relinquished Gaza back to the Palestinians in 2005. That’s nearly a decade of rocket fire, making the generation who grew up under these attacks old enough to train incoming school students in how not to suffer the inevitable PTSD associated with a lifetime of death threats flying through the air and landing in your back yard.

American audiences hear none of this because the majority of American and world media have fallen prey to Hamas’s most powerful ongoing terrorist operation: A disinformation and glasnost campaign designed to destroy western support for Israel through a constant barrage of media bias.

Here is how the disinformation and glasnost campaign has been executed in response to Operation Protective Edge :

Seed of Truth: Palestinian civilians are being killed by Israeli rocket fire in Gaza.

Pack of Lies: Israelis are safely protected in bomb shelters under the Iron Dome while their military targets innocent civilians in the impoverished Gaza Strip.

Ultimate Goal: Encourage American and worldwide support for the Hamas campaign to wipe Israel off the map and eliminate all evidence of the Zionist entity, including the Jewish people and their supporters, from the face of the earth.

The glasnost element is the most perverse. Hamas plays on the western disbelief in the idea of martyrs, portraying these women and children as “innocent civilian victims” of Israeli aggression. When speaking to the non-Western media, these dead are referred to in a term most recently used by Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas, “the Gazan martyrs.” Glasnost is the term for glorifying the leader’s image abroad. In this case, Hamas is using the bodies of women and children to shield their missiles in life and glorify their reputations in death.

Some news agencies and opinion sites are catching onto this disinformation campaign, willing to call it “media bias against Israel.” This is more than media bias. This is a calculated effort on the part of Hamas to sway world opinion against the only nation willing to confront and fight against Islamic terror. Therefore, whether the mainstream media is a willing partner in this endeavor makes no matter. The bottom line is, the media is marketing this disinformation to audiences in America and worldwide that are watching blind, with no Iron Dome to protect them.

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Obama Administration Threatens Israel Under Fire

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014 - by Susan L.M. Goldberg

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What do you do when you’ve got some time to kill in an Israeli bomb shelter? Start a spirited sing along, of course. If you’re a guest in the Dan Hotel in Jerusalem, your song of choice is Oseh Shalom, (A Prayer for Peace): “He who makes peace in High Places, He will make peace for us and for all Israel and let us say, Amen.”

Meanwhile, at the Ha’aretz peace conference (where right-wing Israeli politicians get punched by pacifist leftists), White House Mideast chief Phillip Gordon delineated a series of thinly-veiled threats, so thinly veiled, in fact, that he had to actually include the following phrase in his speech:

Let me be absolutely clear that these are not threats.

No, in fact, they came off more like a public relations campaign issued from a platform granted by an already hot far-Left crowd that makes no bones about their admiration for a two-state solution. Remove the veil and it is plain to see Gordon’s threat: Israel will  ”…embolden extremists on both sides, tear at Israel’s democratic fabric, and feed mutual dehumanization.”

Embracing an HBO-esque mobster tone, Gordon so politely “advised”:

Reaching a peace agreement with the Palestinians would help turn the tide of international sentiment and sideline violent extremists, further bolstering Israel’s security. We know all too well the troubles that can arise for Israel internationally when there is no movement on the political track, especially when settlement activity continues to make the potential peace map more difficult and to undermine international support for Israel. On this, I should also be clear of the United States’ longstanding position: we consider settlements illegitimate and an impediment to progress on peace negotiations. Settlement announcements would be a counter-productive reaction to the kidnapping and murder of the three Israeli teenagers.

…if we fail to come back to peace talks, renewed efforts to isolate Israel internationally and legitimize Palestinian statehood unilaterally are all but certain. The United States will do all it can to fight boycotts and other delegitimization efforts. But in many of these realms, particularly outside the Security Council, our ability to contain the damage is limited, and becoming more and more challenging. This is what American friends of Israel mean when they express concerns about the potential for Israeli isolation if peace talks do not succeed. Let me be absolutely clear that these are not threats. The United States will always have Israel’s back.

One thing is clear from this peace conference speech: Gordon and the Obama administration have Israel’s back …up against a wall. Ironically, peace conference attendees would later run to bomb shelters for cover as sirens indicated another Hamas rocket was on its way. Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas, the same guy Gordon cites as a courageous and reliable peace partner, hasn’t uttered a word to stop his government’s partner from firing in Israel’s direction. Nor has he bothered to reveal that his own Fatah members are joining in the rocket barrage. In fact, the most this “peace partner” can say is, ”it all started when Israel fired back”.

Keep singing in those shelters, Israel. While the American people support you, our administration is failing you. He Who Makes Peace in High Places is our only hope.

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The Real Reason Why Liberals Are Scared of Women with Guns

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014 - by Susan L.M. Goldberg

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Between girls hunting big game to feed starving children in Africa to mothers bearing arms and Bibles on social media, America either needs another birth control issue or an exorcist to stop the head spinning of the most illiberal liberals among us.

Conservatives are quick to distinguish a Christian supporter of the Second Amendment (in this case, Holly Hobby Lobby) from a jihadist:

…[this] “dangerous strand of Christian fundamentalism” is so extraordinarily “dangerous” that it has not only failed to engender any “real violence” but it can’t even bring itself to threaten harm?

And we excel at drawing attention to the moral ineptitude of the pro-abortion community’s outrage at the site of tranquilized or hunted game:

Many of the liberal blogs having a meltdown over Kendall Jones are the same ones that spent a week hailing Emily Letts, who filmed her own abortion. ‘What kind of monster smiles after killing something?’ they say about the woman posing with a tranquilized rhino, but not about the woman giggling while an abortionist executes her baby.

But what we fail to clearly answer is why independent women pose such an inherent threat to the Left. After all, isn’t this the group whose messiah bows to Valerie Jarrett, goddess-in-chief?

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Veteran Shoots Back at Chicago Thug

Tuesday, July 8th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

On Friday, July 4th, a veteran of the US military found himself under fire in Chicago. He has a concealed carry permit. That plus his decision to carry his firearm made all the difference in the world.

The veteran and three of his friends were leaving a party on the city’s south side. When the group reached their vehicle, a container with liquor was sitting on top of it. A woman from the group asked another group gathered next door who the liquor belonged to and removed it.

The move angered 22 year-old Denzel Mickiel, who approached the veteran and his friends shouting obscenities. The man then went into his residence and returned with a gun.

As Mickiel opened fire on the group, the veteran took cover near the vehicle’s front fender, according to assistant state attorney Mary Hain, the Chicago Tribune reports.

The veteran fired two shots, hitting Mickiel both times.

Two of Mickiel’s friends also began shooting at the group, which was able to flee the scene in their vehicle.

Mickiel was transported to the hospital and is in critical condition. A woman in the veteran’s group was hit twice – once in the arm and once in the back – but was stabilized and taken to the hospital.

Mickiel is charged with attempted murder and will be held on $950,000 bond.

Had Friday’s shooting occurred a little more than a year ago, the veteran would not have been legally permitted to conceal carry his firearm.

And he and his friends would probably be dead.

Illinois was the 50th state to pass a concealed carry law, after a court case forced it to.

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Gun Control Group Leader Admits that Obama’s Incompetence, Untrustworthiness Hurts Their Cause

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

The WSJ has an interesting interview with Mark Glaze. He has been the leader of Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety. Glaze is leaving the group. Everytown was caught lying about the number of school shootings since Newtown last week.

Glaze offers up some interesting reasons why he believes the gun control movement continues to fail to get its gun policies passed into law.

Obamacare hurt the government’s credibility.

“There’s an almost perfect overlap, I think, between the people who are the most active and radicalized gun voters and people who just don’t like and trust the government very much. When you take on the gun issue, you’re forced to take on by proxy a much bigger issue in this country, which is a deeply ingrained distrust of government that gets worse every time the government can’t get a healthcare website off the ground or can’t get it’s act together to pass a farm bill.”

Edward Snowden’s revelations about domestic government surveillance also hurt the cause.

“The fact that people have learned that the government has taken for itself the right to listen in on our most private conversations has done nothing to inspire faith in government restraint. It’s that lack of faith in government restraint that makes it difficult to do things like ask everybody to take a background check.”

The government spies on you on the one hand, and wants to disarm you with the other. You don’t have to be paranoid to have a problem with this.

Glaze also admits that his own movement pushes policies that wouldn’t stop the next Newtown. That’s a problem.

“Because people perceive a mismatch in the policy solutions that we have to offer and the way some of these mass shootings happened, you know, it is a messaging problem for us, I think. … Is it a messaging problem when a mass shooting happens and nothing that we have to offer would have stopped that mass shooting? Sure it’s a challenge in this issue.”

That deserves a resounding “Duh!”

It exposes the gun control movement for what it is: A collection of opportunistic ghouls.

Gun controllers would be wise to examine the possible link between strong behavior-modifying drugs and mass shootings. But doing that would not take a single gun off the streets. They could also admit that despite their claims, violent crime has been going down for years. That also won’t take any guns off the streets. They could admit the reasons for the drop in violent crimes, of which there are two main ones — mandatory minimum sentencing keeps violent offenders off the streets longer; and the rise in the number of legal concealed firearm carriers means criminals are less certain than they once were that they’re engaging unarmed victims rather than armed citizens when committing crimes.

The gun grabbers aren’t giving up. They will double down, spend more money, make more outlandish claims, propose more restrictions that will not actually prevent the heinous shootings that they cynically and opportunistically use to push new and unnecessary laws.

And every time they do, more Americans will arm themselves and stock up on ammo.

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Obama Admits that He Wants to Confiscate Your Guns

Tuesday, June 10th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

President Obama commented on his “greatest frustration” during his years in office. His greatest source of frustration is not the fact that jobs remain scarce and the economy remains weak. It’s not the fact that his signature legislative achievement, Obamacare, is a mess and was rolled out poorly and remains unpopular. It’s not even the fact that he hasn’t yet thrown the nation’s borders entirely open (though he’s certainly getting there).

Barack Obama is frustrated because you just won’t let him send federal agents to your house and take your guns. You can tell in the clip, from the tone of his voice, that he is very displeased with the fact that you can still buy a gun. He dislikes that fact, intensely.

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Obama says a few things in the clip that, upon closer inspection, turn out to be untrue. He says gun violence is rising. It is not. He says you should have to undergo a background check before buying a gun, which you already do have to do if you buy from a federally licensed firearm dealer.

Obama also praises Australia’s approach to guns. Which is praise from the President of the United States for full-on confiscation of guns. Because as Charles Cooke points out, that’s exactly what Australia did.

OBAMA: Couple of decades ago, Australia had a mass shooting, similar to Columbine or Newtown. And Australia just said, well, that’s it, we’re not doing, we’re not seeing that again, and basically imposed very severe, tough gun laws, and they haven’t had a mass shooting since.

Our levels of gun violence are off the charts. There’s no advanced, developed country that would put up with this.

In other words, the president of the United States just praised a government for forcefully removing all semi-automatic firearms (i.e. pretty much all of the guns in America) from its citizenry.

Let me be clear, as Obama likes to say: You simply cannot praise Australia’s gun-laws without praising the country’s mass confiscation program. That is Australia’s law.

So, it’s official and on the record now. Despite his acknowledgement that the Second Amendment exists, President Barack Obama is frustrated that you didn’t let him do away with it — and with your natural right to defend yourself.

This man wants to render all Americans into a state of permanent victimhood.

It’s fair to say that if he had been honest about his beliefs in 2008, he would never have been elected president.

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What Conditions Are Required for Capitalism to Exist?

Friday, May 16th, 2014 - by Walter Hudson

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On today’s Fightin Words podcast: we defer to Ayn Rand for an objective view of both capitalism and anarchy, demonstrating that the former cannot exist under the latter. In short, anarcho-capitalism is impossible.

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(21:02 minutes long; 20.26 MB file size. Want to download instead of streaming? Right click here to download this show to your hard drive. Subscribe through iTunes or RSS feed.)

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Hillary Clinton Attacks the ‘Gun Culture’ — ‘Way out of balance’

Wednesday, May 7th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

Hillary Clinton has made comments that are sure to come back to haunt her if she runs for president. The former top diplomat used some very undiplomatic language to assail what she calls the “gun culture” — which is a myth to be explained in a bit — and suggests that at some point Americans will have to acquiesce to have our Second Amendment rights curbed.

Clinton waded into the polarizing issue of gun politics during an appearance at the National Council for Behavioral Health conference in Oxon Hill, Maryland, pointing to recent shootings that involved teens who had been playing loud music and chewing gum and a separate incident involving the typing of text messages in a movie theater.

“I think again we’re way out of balance. I think that we’ve got to rein in what has become an almost article of faith that anybody can have a gun anywhere, anytime,” Clinton said. “And I don’t believe that is in the best interest of the vast majority of people. And I think you can say that and still support the right of people to own guns.”

Clinton told attendees at the mental health conference that “at the rate we’re going, we’re going to have so many people with guns everywhere, fully licensed, fully validated” in settings like movie theaters where shootings have arisen over seemingly mundane things like loud gum chewing or cellphone use.

“That’s what happens in the countries I’ve visited where there is no rule of law and no self-control and that is something that we cannot just let go without paying attention,” she said.

What countries are those? Bosnia, where Clinton dishonestly claimed to have come under sniper fire? There was a war on there.

It’s ironic of a Clinton to mention “self-control.”

All 50 states now have concealed carry permit laws, in some cases because courts now read the Second Amendment for what it is — an expression of the civil right to self-defense. A few states have open carry laws. When concealed and open carry laws were first proposed, many on the left predicted that such laws would lead to gunfights over traffic disputes becoming commonplace. Those predictions have not come to pass. Passing concealed and open carry laws has coincided with an overall decline in violent crime.

Clinton’s comments come at a time when, despite headline-generating shootings that dominate news cycles for weeks, violent crime is actually on a long-term decline. Gun violence is also down. More murders are committed in America each year using blunt objects like baseball bats and common objects like knives than rifles. Handguns figure in many murders, but those are overwhelmingly either crimes of passion committed by perpetrators who know their victims, or are gang related. Gang violence tends to be a consequence of turf wars between rival drug networks. Yet Clinton can be counted among those politicians who prefer not to secure the US border with Mexico, across which much of the drug trade is conducted and at which much of that traffic could be choked off. Clinton would prefer to attack her fellow Americans who happen to own guns and abide by the law.

The “gun culture” that Clinton and others consistently criticize is largely a myth. Millions of Americans own guns, and that’s the extent of what they have in common with each other. The culture Clinton is actually assailing, a culture in which petty disputes are settled by violence, tends to live in urban areas where police are distrusted, fatherlessness is rampant and school drop-out rates are high — and gun control laws tend to be the most restrictive.

But Clinton chooses not to direct her criticism at the fragmentation of the family or at drug gangs and a lawless border. If you own a gun even for hunting or self-defense in your home, Hillary Clinton chooses to criticize you.

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Porn Stars: Attorney General Eric Holder May Have Closed Your Bank Accounts

Thursday, May 1st, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

Porn stars say that JP Morgan Chase bank has been quietly closing their bank accounts.

The skin flick starlets, including Penthouse Pet Teagan Presley, “Cougarland” actress Veronica Avluv and “White House Orgy” actress Layton Benton, are using Twitter to bash the bank over a recent rash of account closure notices.

Presley, whose real name is Ashley Erickson, said her April 16 letter gave no reason for her termination. The bank also is closing her husband’s personal account and their two business accounts, including one for their studio Skinworxxx, she said.

“I’m just upset and still in shock it’s even happening. I’m not doing anything illegal,” Presley told the Daily News.

Porn is a declining but lucrative industry, not so much for those on screen, but it’s still a billion dollar industry.

It’s apparently one of about 30 industries that the US Justice Department is choking out of banks to shut them down entirely via Operation Choke Point, according to Vice News.

In 2011, the FDIC listed 30 “merchant categories that have been associated with high-risk activity,” likening pornography to Ponzi schemes, racist materials, “lifetime guarantees,” and sales of fireworks and tobacco.

But it’s Operation Choke Point that researchers say is the force behind banks threatening to close payday lenders’ accounts unless they go out of business.

At a March hearing before a Senate Banking subcommittee, the Washington Post reported,Senator David Vitter (R-La.) said “there is a determined effort, from [the Justice Department] to the regulators… to cut off credit and use other tactics to force [payday lenders] out of business. I find that deeply troubling because it has no statutory basis, no statutory authority.”

The FDIC lists the 30 industries that have been targeted. They are:

  • Ammunition Sales
  • Cable Box De-scramblers
  • Coin Dealers
  • Credit Card Schemes
  • Credit Repair Services
  • Dating Services
  • Debt Consolidation Scams
  • Drug Paraphernalia
  • Escort Services
  • Firearms Sales
  • Fireworks Sales
  • Get Rich Products
  • Government Grants
  • Home-Based Charities
  • Life-Time Guarantees
  • Life-Time Memberships
  • Lottery Sales
  • Mailing Lists/Personal Info
  • Money Transfer Networks
  • On-line Gambling
  • PayDay Loans
  • Pharmaceutical Sales
  • Ponzi Schemes
  • Pornography
  • Pyramid-Type Sales
  • Racist Materials
  • Surveillance Equipment
  • Telemarketing
  • Tobacco Sales
  • Travel Clubs

It seems that rather than go to the trouble of passing laws to target industries that the government has deemed politically incorrect, or even getting a regulation through an agency that can later be challenged in court, the government is simply leaning on banks to cut off accounts. Over time, if enough banks cooperate, these industries would go away or at least be forced farther underground.

There are certainly some skeevy, but legal, industries on that list: telemarketers, purveyors of racist materials, and so forth. And isn’t it strange that while some states are legalizing pot, the FDIC is targeting tobacco sales?

Two of the items on the list ought to rise even more concern than the closure of porn star bank accounts: ammunition sales and firearm sales.

Law-abiding, non-porn star Americans purchase both firearms and ammunition online every single day. Not only are they part of a legal industry, they are part of a legal industry that is enshrined in the Constitution as a civil right. The Obama administration has been hostile to the Second Amendment from the beginning, and President Obama himself infamously told gun control supporters at the Brady Center that he was working on their behalf “under the radar.”

Was Operation Choke Point the “under the radar” scheme that he was talking about? Is Operation Choke Point part morality police, part skeevy government game to disarm Americans?

If a porn star decides to sue JP Morgan Chase for closing their account, the discovery process should turn up some very interesting stuff.

h/t Chicks on the Right

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Tom Ridge Quits Bloomberg’s New Anti-Gun Group

Friday, April 25th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

The DC reports:

Former Republican Gov. Tom Ridge is stepping down from his position with Michael Bloomberg’s new anti-gun organization, The Daily Caller has learned.

“When I signed on as an advisor to Everytown, I looked forward to a thoughtful and provocative discussion about the toll gun violence takes on Americans,” Ridge told The Daily Caller in a statement, through a spokesman.

“After consultation with Everytown, I have decided that I am uncomfortable with their expected electoral work,” Ridge said. “Therefore, we have decided that we will pursue this issue in our separate spheres.”

A little more detail regarding Ridge’s change of mind would be nice. You’d have have to have lived under a rock to not know what to expect from Bloomberg by now. He’s a statist who loves fear, hates big sodas and all guns, except those guns his own bodyguards are carrying. He loves those guns. He thinks his ego and his political advocacy will earn him a spot in heaven, if there even is one.

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Clue for Bloomberg’s New Anti-Gun Group: This Is Not What Happens When a Bullet is Fired

Monday, April 21st, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

Mike Bloomberg’s latest anti-gun group, Everytown.org, debuted over the weekend with this graphic.

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The graphic depicts a cartoon bullet flying, shell casing and all, like a rocket out of a cartoon gun barrel.

Suffice it to say that when a bullet is fired, the depiction above is not what actually happens.

Bloomberg has pledged to spend $50 million on gun control efforts, despite the fact that the Second Amendment is settled law. He might be wise to invest in high-speed photography, or in an artist who actually knows the first thing about firearms.

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NBC Frets About Too Much Money in Politics, then Praises Bloomberg’s Massive-Money Anti-Gun Crusade

Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

Self-awareness is not the mainstream media’s strong suit. Just a couple of weeks after NBC lamented the presence and impact of there being too much money in politics, its own Savannah Guthrie conducted a glowing interview with Michael Bloomberg. That interview centered on his plan to pour $50 million into his latest anti-gun crusade.

h/t CNS News

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Bloomberg Plans to Use $50 Million, and Naked Fear, to Attack Gun Rights

Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

Mike Bloomberg just doesn’t get it. He thinks the NRA is successful because of money. He doesn’t understand that the NRA has money because it consistently defends a civil right.

Michael R. Bloomberg, making his first major political investment since leaving office, plans to spend $50 million this year building a nationwide grass-roots network to motivate voters who feel strongly about curbing gun violence, an organization he hopes can eventually outmuscle the National Rifle Association.

Mr. Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York, said gun control advocates need to learn from the N.R.A. and punish those politicians who fail to support their agenda — even Democrats whose positions otherwise align with his own.

“They say, ‘We don’t care. We’re going to go after you,’ ” he said of the N.R.A. “ ‘If you don’t vote with us we’re going to go after your kids and your grandkids and your great-grandkids. And we’re never going to stop.’ ”

The NRA doesn’t do that. It doesn’t threaten children and grandchildren. But Bloomberg intends to.

He added: “We’ve got to make them afraid of us.”

Would you settle for people despising you? Because you’ve already achieved that.

Let’s flash back to note what a towering hypocrite Bloomberg is. He knows it’s a dangerous world out there. And he wants people with guns walking around him to protect him. He just doesn’t want you and I to have the same rights.

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Bloomberg is setting up a new anti-constitution brand name that we’ll all have to watch out for.

Women, and mothers in particular, will be the focus of the organizing and outreach, a path that he and his advisers have modeled after groups like Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

The plans call for a restructuring of the gun control groups he funds, Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. They will be brought under one new umbrella group called Everytown for Gun Safety.

He’s also enlisting a high-profile Republican to help him curb our self-defense rights.

Bloomberg is bringing on a new advisory board with prominent Republican and Democratic figures. Tom Ridge, the former Pennsylvania governor and Homeland Security secretary under President George W. Bush; Eli Broad, the philanthropist; Warren Buffett, the investor; and Michael G. Mullen, the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under both Mr. Bush and President Obama, will all be board members.

Bloomberg’s arrogance truly knows no bounds at all.

Pointing to his work on gun safety, obesity and smoking cessation, he said with a grin: “I am telling you if there is a God, when I get to heaven I’m not stopping to be interviewed. I am heading straight in. I have earned my place in heaven. It’s not even close.”

It’s not what you’ve done or what you know that gets you into Heaven. It’s Who you know.

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Holder: DOJ Considering Forcing Gun Owners to Wear Electronic Bracelets

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

Video:

Holder told Congress, “I mean, I think that one of the things we learned when we were trying to get passed those common sense reforms last year, Vice President Biden and I had a meeting with a group of technology people and talked about how guns can be made more safe by making them either through fingerprint identification — the gun talks to a bracelet or something you might wear — how the gun can only be used by the person who is lawfully in possession of the weapon.”

That wouldn’t stop any gunman on a rampage. But an electronic bracelet would drive up the cost of firearms, make them less reliable, increase a potential crime victim’s response time and might prevent them from being able to respond at all, and might even give the government a means of monitoring gun owners within their own homes. Criminals will just disable the electronics.

So it’s very much in line with this administration’s overall aims of disarming all of us and keeping control of us.

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Gun Rights Advocates Pretty Impressed with the Mindblowing Scale of Leland Yee’s Hypocrisy

Friday, March 28th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

By day, California Democrat Leland Yee was an outspoken gun control advocate. But by night, he is alleged to have been a broker for Russian arms dealers to arm Islamic militants, for piles of cold, hard cash.

That dual life hasn’t been lost on Yee’s enemies on gun control. Through its tears and between its heavy sobs at having a gun controller so ruthlessly exposed, the LA Times reports:

The complaint says Yee described his approach to arms dealing as “agnostic.”

“People want to get whatever they want to get. Do I care? No, I don’t care. People need certain things,” Yee said, according to the complaint.

Later Wednesday, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms issued a statement ripping the 65-year-old San Francisco Democrat.

“If these allegations are true, Sen. Yee is easily the biggest hypocrite on gun control to walk the halls of the capitol in Sacramento, if not the entire United States,” said the group’s chairman Alan Gottlieb.

“It is hard to fathom this kind of activity on a scale as massive as these court documents allege. If Sen. Yee and his fellow defendants are convicted, they’re going to wind up in one of the biggest gun-free zones in the country, a federal prison.”

Andrew Arulanandam, a spokesman for the NRA, said Yee was a hypocrite.

“This poster boy for gun control is a scumbag,” he said.

Succinct, and accurate.

Isn’t Leland Yee an excellent argument for keeping and strengthening the Second Amendment? The Second Amendment is not and never was about hunting. It’s about an armed populace being a check on out-of-control, tyrannical government and also about national defense. This is a man who used his political power to disarm Americans, while he was allegedly arming America’s enemies. It’s treasonous.

Here’s a good laugh.

Yee was scheduled to be honored last week by the Northern California Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, according to a statement on Yee’s website, which says the state Senator “has authored numerous bills designed to make government more transparent.”

Yee is the recipient of several similar journalism awards, the statement said, including the Freedom of Information Award by the California Newspaper Publishers Assn.

“State Senator Leland Yee of San Francisco will receive the Public Official Award for his courage to oppose his own Democratic Party leaders and the governor in 2013 with public criticism of efforts to weaken the California Public Records Act by loosening disclosure requirements for local governments,” the SPJ chapter’s website said.

Ha ha ha. Mr. Transparency, Mr. Gun Control, Mr. Censor Violent Video Games — Mr. Hide His Elaborate Scheme to (Allegely) Trade Cash for Favors and Shoulder-Fired Rockets to Arm Hyperviolent Terrorists. The media praised him, never saw any of this coming.

All told, 26 people were identified as having violated federal statutes in the complaint. They were accused of participating in a free-ranging criminal ring that dabbled in a spectrum of activities, including illegal marijuana “grows” and a scheme to transport stolen liquor to China.

Wow. Just, wow. Yee’s ring includes just about everything a proper crime syndicate requires, including political access and power. The only thing lacking so far is a sexy sidekick, but who knows? Maybe there’s one lurking in the full complaint. Where was sexy Russian spy Anna Chapman?

Michael Walsh has a strong point. Yee’s Democratic Party does look like a grand national criminal enterprise.

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Democrat Wants His Party to Officially Come Out Against the Second Amendment

Monday, March 24th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

The Daily Surge has a clip of Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) on Bill Maher’s HBO show. Ellison says the Democratic Party should just be honest about its stance on guns.

Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), a guest on Maher’s panel pushed back saying, “You have got to check out the progressive caucus. We have come out very strong for common-sense gun safety rules. I mean, 27 children were mowed down. Isn’t that enough for us? One of our colleagues, [former Congresswoman] Gabby Giffords, shot in the face.”

For some reason, Americans murdered by drug cartel members along the border never came up. Neither did the victims of Chicago’s gang violence.

“Common-sense gun safety is bullsh*t,” Maher shouted. “Why doesn’t your party come out against the Second Amendment? It’s the problem, ” he added.

“I sure wish they would. I sure wish they would,” Ellison hollered in response.

Most Republicans wish Democrats would come out in full opposition to the Second Amendment, too.

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Is This Mission Creep or Something Worse?

Friday, March 21st, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

The US Navy built its LinX system in 2003, supposedly to help conduct counterterrorism. But that’s not what it’s doing, according to the Washington Examiner. It’s engaged in an activity that crosses the posse comitatus line.

A parking ticket, traffic citation or involvement in a minor fender-bender are enough to get a person’s name and other personal information logged into a massive, obscure federal database run by the U.S. military.

The Law Enforcement Information Exchange, or LinX, has already amassed 506.3 million law enforcement records ranging from criminal histories and arrest reports to field information cards filled out by cops on the beat even when no crime has occurred.

LinX is a national information-sharing hub for federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. It is run by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, raising concerns among some military law experts that putting such detailed data about ordinary citizens in the hands of military officials crosses the line that generally prohibits the armed forces from conducting civilian law enforcement operations.

It seems that everywhere we turn, the US government is crossing lines and gathering up information on ordinary Americans. These government agencies are doing this despite President Obama’s promise that the government isn’t spying on ordinary Americans.

This bit is interesting.

The number of records in the system has mushroomed from about 50 million in 2007 to more than 10 times that number today.

Background checks for gun sales and applications for concealed weapons permits are not included in the system, according to NCIS officials and representatives of major state and local agencies contacted by the Examiner.

How can we be sure of that? Or, more accurately, while LinX may not be collecting gun background check pings, how can we be sure that some other government agency out there isn’t? How can we be sure that some obscure agency or program out there hasn’t scooped up all of the gun background checks, and all of the state records on concealed carry, and is just storing it all somewhere? NSA supposedly can record every phone call placed in a given country. If it can do that, it’s probably child’s play to tap into the NICS lines.

Can we be sure they or another agency isn’t doing that? I don’t see how. The FBI has its own version of LinX, called the National Data Exchange, or N-Dex. So together the military and the politicized DOJ have a database of about 500 million records of our ordinary interactions with law enforcement. Along with what else?

It’s surely tempting for government officials to find a way to amass firearm background check and purchase records, along with state carry permits.

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There’s More to #SXSW2014 than Skinny Jeans and Hipsters

Friday, March 7th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

20140307_112325

 

As great as it can be to be a conservative at CPAC, it tends to be a weekend of preaching to the choir. Well, that, and getting smeared by the dishonest media.

Media could just as easily stroll around Austin this weekend and mock the self-important, the hipster, the thousands upon thousands of conventioneers who occupy every couch, beanbag, stool and crevice to do exactly what they would be doing if they were at home — namely, burying their heads in their laptops and shutting out the rest of the world. If you’re looking for stereotypes, the city and SXSW are full of them — the non-conformist who wears the same little porkpie hat that every other non-conformist wears, the anti-corporate type checking into Facebook on his iPhone or Galaxy, the libertarian start-up dreamer who espouses every single anti-business leftwing trope known to humanity. They’re all here.

But so are the corporations.

20140307_133610_LLS

 

And the networks.

 

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Seth Meyers’ booth/tent lets you rent bikes to get around town, which is pretty helpful. SXSW has brought a couple hundred thousand extra people here, and the roads aren’t even built to handle Austin’s normal traffic. Parking is insane. A free bike is handy.

Anyway, the media won’t mock any of this and it won’t note the corporate-indie conflict or just make fun of some of the more obvious oddities of the whole thing. The corporations are here and the indie start-ups are here, somewhere, and the politics of the place has a distinctively leftish point of view, which doesn’t make a lot of sense if you think about it. The left these days is all about conformity and one-size-fits-all. The left looks at bankrupt California and successful Texas and wants to force the latter to become more like the former, instead of allowing for differences or admitting that its way isn’t working. Tech is about doing whatever works, and then making that work better or in some new way. Tech development is about freedom. The left, and the politics the left has brought to SXSW, are not about freedom at all.

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Flashback: Obama Oversaw the Destruction of Ukraine’s Conventional Military Weapons

Tuesday, March 4th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

When he was Illinois’ junior senator, Barack Obama went to Donetsk, Ukraine. There he saw something that is quite relevant today.

DONETSK, Ukraine – U.S. Senators Dick Lugar (R-IN) and Barack Obama (D-IL) called for the immediate destruction of 15,000 tons of ammunition, 400,000 small arms and light weapons, and 1,000 man-portable air defense systems (MANPADS) or shoulder missile launchers that are often sought by terrorists.

Lugar and Obama toured the Donetsk State Chemical Production Plant, a conventional weapons destruction facility where the U.S. has taken the lead in a three-year NATO program to destroy the weapons. Another 117,000 tons of ammunition and 1.1 million small arms and light weapons are slated for destruction within 12 years.

So far, the U.S. has contributed $2.1 million to the project, and Austria, Bulgaria, Luxembourg, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Slovakia, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom have contributed $1.2 million.

Ukraine has been calling for US, UK and NATO assistance since Russian troops swept into and captured Crimea over the weekend. Its small military is no match for Russia’s much larger military. Poland, whose missile defense system Obama canceled after Russian objections, called for a NATO Article 4 meeting which takes place today.

During the 2012 presidential election, Obama mocked Republican rival Mitt Romney when the latter said that Russia is America’s main geopolitical adversary. Putin’s moves have proven Romney right.

Markets around the world rose today, after plunging since the weekend invasion, on the news that Putin ended the Russian military exercise on Ukraine’s border and indicated that the Russian troops in Crimea would not open fire. But at the same time, Putin is warning the West against using economic sanctions against Russia. The question now is whether Putin is merely consolidating Russia’s gains in Crimea before moving on to “protect Russians” in eastern Ukraine.

h/t Jim Geraghty

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Concealed Carry Permit Applications Soar in California After Ninth Circuit Second Amendment Decision

Friday, February 28th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

A couple of weeks ago, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the Second Amendment is settled law, and California’s laws on concealed firearm carry were overly restrictive. The ruling essentially turned California into a “shall issue” state, at least until the Democrat-owned legislature and Gov. Brown can figure out how to thwart the ruling.

Look what’s happening in California now.

Gun owners are flooding the sheriff’s offices in two California counties with applications for concealed weapon permits following a bombshell ruling two weeks ago by a federal appeals court that citizens need not justify their requests.

Orange and Ventura counties have dropped the “good cause” standard for issuing conceal carry permits after the requirement was struck down  Feb. 13 by the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeal. A three-judge panel of the court ruled 2 to 1 that the Second Amendment bars California counties from requiring law-abiding gun owners who want to carry concealed firearms to demonstrate special, individualized needs for protection.

More than 500 applications have poured in to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department in just two weeks — roughly the total number of applications filed in 2013, a spokesman said. Orange County Sheriff Sandra Hutchens announced on the department’s website that the county will comply with the federal court’s order immediately, sparking the wave of applications.

The Brady gun-grabbers aren’t happy about all this. Thinking about their unhappiness with law-abiding Americans exercising their fundamental rights for the first time is a nice way to prepare yourself for a fine weekend.

California is appealing the case, but the Second Amendment is settled law. Democrats should stop trying to change it.

h/t Hot Air

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VIDEO — Detroit Mom Uses ‘Assault Rifle’ to Defend Her Kids from Armed Thugs

Thursday, February 20th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

Here’s your feel-good Second Amendment story of the day, from WXYZ-TV.

A Detroit family is resting easier today after three armed thugs failed in their attempt to break into the family’s home while the mother and her two young children were inside. The family’s security camera captured the drama.

The video shows that the three young men broke through the front door, and one of them was armed. The mom had grabbed her rifle:

detroit-mom-rifle

And she fired at the intruders. She did not hit them.

The three fled, but the one carrying a pistol came back in. The mom fired again and he fled.

All three were arrested later. The mom and her children were unharmed, an outcome that would not have been very likely had she not been armed and knew how to operate her rifle.

h/t Capitol City Project

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Is PepsiCo Underwriting Gabby Giffords’ Gun Control Activism?

Tuesday, February 18th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

Take a look at this. It’s from the 2013 Aspen Ideas meeting:

pepsi-guncontrol

 

If you haven’t heard of the Aspen meeting, it’s one of those gatherings of the high and mighty around the world, UN heavyweights and Hollywood nitwits and politicians with big government causes, like Giffords.

Here’s the text from that screenshot:

Two and a half years ago, Gabrielle Giffords and Mark Kelly had their lives changed forever by a madman with an arsenal of deadly weapons. Today, the former congresswoman and the former astronaut discuss what it’s like to take on one of the most complicated issues in America—and one of the most difficult political challenges of our time. Giffords and Kelly will discuss how the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School drove them to commit themselves, personally and professionally, to reducing gun violence in America—by working toward common sense solutions that respect our Second Amendment rights and traditions of gun ownership. They will share what the first few months of their new organization, Americans for Responsible Solutions, have yielded, what it feels like to be public figures again, and what the future holds, in terms of keeping our communities safer and building a political movement that reflects the diversity of our great country. Underwritten by PepsiCo.

Giffords’ group, Americans for Responsible Solutions, proffers “solutions” to gun violence that would not solve anything, such as mandating background checks among private sellers at gun shows. They use fuzzy logic to support this measure.

[T]here is a gaping hole in our laws that allow criminals and others to go to “private sellers” at gun shows, on the internet, and elsewhere to buy guns with no background check, no questions asked. Commonly referred to as the private sales loophole or “gun show loophole,” this failure in our public safety policy has allowed up to 40 percent of all gun transfers to take place without a background check.

In practice, this means that those wishing to purchase a gun have two easily available options – a federally licensed seller that will require a background check and an unlicensed seller that won’t. Not surprisingly, 80 percent of criminal inmates in a Department of Justice survey said they got their guns through private means – no background check necessary.

Do criminal inmates always tell the truth? Where is the link between how criminals get their guns “privately,” and gun shows? Giffords’ site doesn’t demonstrate that such a link exists.

Giffords uses an old statistic — “40 percent of all gun transfers take place without a background check” — which has been debunked.

The bolded line from the Aspen Ideas site above prompted the folks at TheTruthAboutGuns to call PepsiCo for an answer. An answer has not been forthcoming.

I called PepsiCo (1-800-433-2652) to see what’s what. “That is absolutely outrageous,” Customer Service Rep Hannah said. “We would never do something like that.” After spending an Internet eon on hold listening to the audio history of Pepsi jingles, Hannah transferred me to her supervisor, Elise Galgano. “PepsiCo doesn’t sponsor any gun control-related event,” she told me. “I’ll pass this along to my boss and get back to you.”

NBC’s Andrea Mitchell’s role alongside Giffords is a nice touch. Mitchell, whose show engineered smears of Republican Mitt Romney during the 2012 election, may be the most unethical reporter at MSNBC, which is saying something.

PepsiCo brands are numerous and difficult to avoid, should you want to avoid them.

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Pepsi earned criticism in 2009 for aligning its branding and rhetoric too closely to the Obama campaign’s look and feel.

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Ninth Circuit: Yes, The Second Amendment Means Americans Have the Right to Bear Arms

Thursday, February 13th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

The Second Amendment is settled law, people. Stop trying to change it.

The court concludes that California’s broad limits on both open and concealed carry of loaded guns — with no “shall-issue” licensing regime that assures law-abiding adults of a right to get licenses, but only a “good cause” regime under which no license need be given — “impermissibly infringe[] on the Second Amendment right to bear arms in lawful self-defense.” The Ninth Circuit thus joins the Seventh Circuit, and disagrees with the Second, Third, and Fourth Circuits. (State courts are also split on the subject.)

If this holds up, and it will if it gets to SCOTUS, then California will have to issue concealed or open carry permits.

 

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AR-15 Maker Makes Cosmetic Changes So It Complies with New York’s Silly Gun Law

Monday, February 10th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

“Assault weapons” bans typically focus either on capacity or on cosmetics — how the weapon looks. New York’s SAFE Act has already run into trouble on the first part, when its capacity limits made criminals out of cops. Now the maker of the AR-15 rifle has exposed the stupidity of the second part. They changed a couple things about how the rifle looks, making it compliant with the law.

Here’s a SAFE Act compliant assault weapon.

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Features like adjustable stocks, pistols grips, and flash suppressors has been deemed to be unlawful on these rifles, mainly because it makes them LOOK mean.  And we all know how little these anti-gun lawmakers really know about guns, as the “Ghost gun” video illustrated.

The new AR-15 design did away with the pistol grip which gives the gun an odd paintball gun look.  The stock is fixed as well, but at least New Yorkers now have a legal way to own an AR-15, a fact which is still driving some gun control activists mad.

Two words: Ha ha.

 

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Wendy Davis’ Shocking ‘Conversion’ on Guns Exposes Anti-Gun Group’s Rank Hypocrisy

Thursday, February 6th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

The Blaze’s Dana Loesch appeared on The View this week. Anti-gun group Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense In America! (the exclamation point is part of their logo) took the occasion as a chance to engage in vitriol and name-calling.

Forgive me here, but are these moms demanding action at the point of a gun?

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Loesch is a conservative, therefore fair game for childish #gunbully name-calling and preemptive accusations of lying. The enraged moms demanded that The View keep Dana off the show, which didn’t happen.

But how about late-term abortion icon Wendy Davis? The Texas Democrat came out overnight for open carry, putting her at odds with many in her own party.

For some reason, Moms Demand Action’s response to Davis’ desperate conversion isn’t quite as full of rage.

Earlier today, Texas gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis announced that she supports new laws that would allow Texans to openly carry loaded firearms in public. Davis’s position is disappointing and dangerous given that there is no federal or state requirement for background checks on private gun sales in Texas, making it easy for felons and other dangerous criminals, including domestic abusers, to get guns.

Current law also makes it easier for victims of domestic abuse to defend themselves. Moms Demand Action! and similar groups never get around to noticing that.

Ashley Sewell tweets for the win.

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Wendy Davis Supports Open Carry Now? Seriously? (Updated)

Thursday, February 6th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

Well, this is good for a laugh.

When she was on the Fort Worth, TX city council, Democrat gov candidate Wendy Davis tried to kick gun shows off of municipal property. As recently as September 2013, Davis told Jay Root of the Texas Tribune that she would sign legislation restricting gun shows and closing the so-called “gun show loophole.” That “loophole” allows individual sellers to sell their firearms without having to get any government permission. Anti-gun activists have long sought to close that “loophole” without much success. Davis’ efforts on the Fort Worth council also failed, but they’re very similar to what the Democrat-controlled Travis County commission is attempting to do to the Saxet gun show right now. Anti-gun sentiment runs deep among the Democrats, and where they have control, they usually get up to no good.

Fast forward and Davis’ campaign is in a tailspin after revelations that she embellished the origins story that was central to her campaign for governor. Wendy Davis needs a game-changer, or at least a subject-changer. And surprise! Wendy Davis is now in favor of open carry.

Sure she is. She also supports ranchers, except when she’s voting against stiffer penalties for cattle theft. The senator who filibustered against a reasonable bill on abortion is also “pro-life.”

Davis has said she supports expanding gun rights in Texas. But in a statement to The Associated Press, she said that includes open-carry — a position that puts her at odds with her own party but could keep her from alienating gun rights advocates in a deeply conservative a state where the Second Amendment is sacrosanct.

Well, it would put her at odds with her own party if anyone believed her. Few will.

It would be useful positioning, though. If anyone believed Wendy Davis.

“There is little or no public safety justification for open carry,” said Emmanuel Garcia, spokesman for the Texas Democratic Party.

Kellye Burke, who leads the Texas Chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, also opposes Davis’ position. She said the open carry of firearms, whether rifles or pistols, “is meant to be a sign of intimidation. It’s not about protection.”

“I don’t think people are aware of it. They just haven’t seen it yet. People are completely shocked how strange and lawless it looks to have that kind of firepower in our daily life,” Burke said.

A more honest name for that group would be “Some Moms Who Don’t Know Anything About Guns or the Second Amendment Demand Even More Government,” but that’s neither here nor there. Most Texas moms and dads are not on board with the anti-gun agenda.

About 13 states allow open carry, with several more considered “friendly” to it. Those states don’t look lawless, but gun Democrat-dominated control havens like Chicago and Washington, D.C. do. Texas isn’t an open carry state yet, but should be. The GOP frontrunner for governor, Attorney General Greg Abbott, is for open carry. All the GOP candidates for lieutenant governor are on the record favoring open carry.

Davis is trying to defuse an issue before it becomes even more of a problem for her, and may be trying to raise her bottom-feeding F score from the National Rifle Association. But the reality is, her new position just creates new questions about her credibility. It raises the question of whether she can be believed on anything. Six months ago Wendy Davis wanted to do what the radical Travis County Democrats are doing. Now she wants Texans to believe that she’s for open carry?

There is good news here, for gun rights advocates. Attacking the Second Amendment is a dead end in Texas. The Democrats in Texas know they cannot run an honest anti-gun radical for governor. They can run a dishonest one, though.

Update: “Flummoxed” isn’t a word one generally wants to see associated with the top of their party ticket. But Davis’ extreme makeover on guns has her running mate thus:

While the position essentially mirrors the stance on open-carry taken by her likely Republican opponent, Attorney General Greg Abbott, it puts at her odds with statements from her own Texas Democratic Party and her fellow senator, Leticia Van De Putte of San Antonio, the Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor.

Van De Putte looked flummoxed Thursday morning in a Texas Tribune interview when asked about the revelation — reported overnight by The Associated Press — that Davis wanted to allow Texans to carry firearms in public.

“The discussions that I have had with the law enforcement back home, they think that open carry does not make their job any easier and I’m with them,” Van De Putte said. “This is one where Wendy and I are on a different page.”

More: Wendy Davis’ Shocking ‘Conversion’ on Guns Exposes Anti-Gun Group’s Rank Hypocrisy

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Beretta to Open New Factory in Tennessee

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

About a year ago, Maryland passed onerous new gun restrictions. At that time, gun manufacturer Beretta said Maryland’s decision would force it to reevaluate its presence in the state. Beretta, the world’s oldest weapons maker, makes many of its firearms at its factory in Accokeek, MD and has warehousing facilities there. Previous Maryland actions against the Second Amendment have already caused Beretta to relocate some of its warehousing to Virginia, which has more open gun laws.

Today, Beretta announced that it is building a new firearms factory in Tennessee. It chose that state for commonsense reasons.

Jeff Reh, general counsel for Beretta, said the company was looking a state that supported Second Amendment rights,and had other key attributes, including a competitive tax environment, good quality of life and was focused on corporate recruitment.

That rules out most of the blue states.

Beretta’s new Tennessee facility will create 300 jobs.

h/t Instapundit

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Rebuttal to Another ‘Why Won’t the Social Conservatives Just Shut Up?’ Post

Thursday, January 23rd, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

So, I have to respond to this. Gently.

My friend Roger Simon writes that social conservatives are the only thing that can “save liberalism.” Social conservatives should just accept the wisdom of coastal, unchurched 18 year olds and surrender our core beliefs. Surrender on marriage, and allow it to be redefined by people who harbor nothing but contempt for the institution. It’s a recurring theme among a certain set within the larger conservative-libertarian movement. Shut up and surrender, they explain.

Where do the surrenders end? Those who share the shut-up sentiment never say. They just tell social conservatives to shut up already and give up on the issues that for many are the very reason that they got into politics in the first place. So we surrender on marriage, then we give up on life, and pretty soon, they’ll be telling us to give up on the Second Amendment, then the First, then something else. Always retreat, ever surrender, because they say so, never offering a glimpse of what might be the end game.

The First Amendment is already under assault, by the way, via Obamacare. And it’s under threat in the marriage issue too. So surrendering on that issue threatens to gut our fundamental rights as Americans. Beware of ripple effects.

For what it’s worth, social conservatives aren’t actually pushing anything forward, at least not in the cultural arena. For many, Roe v. Wade was an assault that could not go unanswered, so they got involved in politics. For others, the left’s sustained assault on the family is the driving force. For others, it’s confiscatory tax policies or something else. Social conservatives are defending, not advancing, on social policy. Marriage was a settled issue — settled law, as the Democrats like to say when it suits them — until some folks came along and decided to redefine it. Mostly in court, because they kept losing in the democratic process, even in their coastal states.

The surrenders won’t end with same-sex marriage. Anyone who has observed the past few decades must see this, unless they’re willing themselves blind. There are never armistices in the culture wars. There is no redoubt to which strategic withdrawal is possible. There is no line the other side will not cross. Give the haters — not Roger, who is a friend and very much not a hater at all, but the core of the anti-family movement on the left — their redefinition of marriage and they will just move on to something else that expands state power at the expense of the individual. They always do. They’re already forcing business owners who object to same-sex marriage on religious grounds to serve them, or lose their livelihoods. Is this fair? Is there no space for what was even Barack Obama’s stated (insincerely) position just two years ago? At some point, a church somewhere will lose a lawsuit over gay marriage in an activist court, and then the state will feel free to crush what’s left of Christian faith in America under its boot. Go ahead and scoff. It’s coming. Which side do you think the alleged civil rights defenders at the ACLU will take? They’re the ones pulling down harmless monuments to our war dead, because those monuments acknowledge faith.

If social conservatives are to be muzzled — silenced — why will they remain engaged in politics? What’s the point? Roger and those who agree with him never answer that one either. If we can’t speak out on issues that are dear to us, why will we speak at all?

Let’s take but one issue that’s before the courts right now. Who is challenging Obamacare and on what grounds? Are the libertarians waging lawfare against it? Not effectively, but the Green family and the Catholic Church are. Who are they? Social conservatives. They’re fighting one of the most egregious assaults on personal liberty in a century, on religious freedom grounds. And they have the best standing chance of at least rolling back Obamacare’s attack on religious conscience — an attack, by the way, that libertarians mostly ignore. If they win, though, some measure of liberty will be restored — without the help of libertarians. Hm.

This month we honor the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King. Why do we honor him? What animated his quest for civil rights? From where did he draw the moral force that he had? From where did the abolitionist movement of the 19th century draw its moral force? What made abolitionist William Wilberforce tick?

They drew their power from their faith. They built their appeals to hearts and minds out of their faith. Look at today’s social justice movement. It has divorced itself from faith in anything but the very government that has been the instrument of oppression. That’s why it lacks credibility, and why Al Sharpton will always be unfit to carry Dr. King’s and Wilberforce’s Bibles.

While charlatan Sharpton pounds his angry fist and hops around town with his hot young thang, and some try to write people like me out of the conservative movement, let me tell you what I learned in my Southern Baptist church down in the Bible Belt: Racism is intolerable. Hatefulness is unacceptable and ungodly. We’re all sinners and children of God. We all want to and need to be loved. They will know we are Christians by our — what? By our love. Where do those ideas come from? If we write the source of those ideas out of our public life, and chase those who believe them away, what replaces it? Upon what do we base this idea of the dignity of humanity?

Big government, unchallenged by any moral rival, leads to madness.

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Phoenix Jewelry Store Owner Shoots, Wounds Armed Robber

Thursday, January 16th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

If you outlaw guns, only criminals will have guns.

PHOENIX (KSAZ) - A woman who allegedly tried to rob a jewelry store is hospitalized in critical condition after being shot several times by the store owner.

Phoenix police say the owner and the suspect exchanged gunfire Tuesday afternoon at Diamond Star AZ Jewelry near 13th Street and Northern Avenue.

The woman fled the scene, but was arrested a short distance away in a nearby neighborhood and taken to an area hospital. Authorities say she was shot several times by the store’s owner after she allegedly tried to rob it.

The owner, who is in his 70s, was also shot in the exchange, but sustained less serious injuries than the robber.

h/t

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Washington DC Saw Nearly 1400 Armed Robberies in 2013. How Can This Be?

Monday, January 6th, 2014 - by Bryan Preston

Washington DC has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the country, even after the Heller decision. So how can it be that the city of just 632,000 saw nearly 1,400 armed robberies last year?

I mean, don’t the robbers know about all that gun control on the books? Don’t they know that the violent crime rate elsewhere around America is plunging?

In the year from Dec. 31, 2012 to this past Dec. 31, D.C. police reported 1,397 robberies in which a gun was shown, brandished or pointed.

With 103 homicides reported in the same period, the figures suggest that the likelihood of being robbed with a gun in the city is about 14 times greater than that of being slain by any means.

The number of gun robberies in 2013 was 97 fewer than in the previous year, a drop of more than 6 percent. It was, however, about 11 percent more than the 1,261 gun robberies reported to police in 2011.

Maybe all those robbers just assume that if David Gregory can get away with violating Washington’s gun laws, so can they.

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