Walkabout In The Weminuche Wilderness

Herschel Smith · 05 Aug 2018 · 39 Comments

"There are no socialists in the bush" - HPS All of my physical training only barely prepared me for the difficulty of the Weminuche Wilderness (pronounced with the "e" silent).  It's National Forest land, not National Park.  The Department of Agriculture no longer prints maps of the area, so we relied on NatGeo for the map, and it's good, but not perfect. We have a lot of ground to cover, including traveling with firearms, the modification I made to one of my guns for the trip, the actors…… [read more]

William Barr: “The Single Most Important Thing We Can Do In Gun Control”

BY Herschel Smith
2 days ago

CNSNEWS.com:

(CNSNews.com) – “In 1994, you said that gun control is a dead end,” Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) told Attorney General-nominee William Barr at his confirmation hearing on Tuesday.

“Do you still believe that prudent controls on weapons won’t reduce violent crime?” Feinstein, a staunch gun control advocate, asked him.

“I think that the problem of our time is to get an effective system in place that can keep dangerous firearms out of the hands of mentally ill people,” Barr replied.

That is — should be priority number one. And it’s going to take some hard work. And we need to get on top of the problem. We need to come up with agreed-to standards that are prohibitors of people who are mentally ill. We have to put the resources in to get the system built up the way we did many years ago on the felon records and so forth.

We have to get the system working. And as I say, it’s sort of piecemeal a little bit right now. We need to really get some energy behind it and get it done.

And I also think we need to push along the ERPOs (Extreme Risk Protection Orders), so we have these red flag laws to supplement the use of the background check to find out if someone has some mental disturbance. This is the single most important thing I think we can do in the gun control area to stop these massacres from happening in the first place.

Later, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) asked Barr to update Congress on his view of the Second Amendment.

Barr said that even before the Supreme Court’s 2008 Heller decision, which upheld the individual right to bear arms, he believed that was so.

“I personally concluded that the Second Amendment creates a personal right under the Constitution,” Barr said.

It’s based on the Lockean notion of the right of self-preservation. It’s tied to that. And I was glad that — to see Heller come out and vindicate that initial view that I had. And so there’s no question under Heller that the right to have weapons is — firearms, is protected under the Second Amendment and is a personal right. At the same time, there’s room for reasonable regulation.

And you know, from my standpoint, what I would look for is — in assessing a regulation is, what’s the burden on law-abiding people? And is it proportionate to whatever benefit in terms of safety and effectiveness will be conferred?

As I said just a moment ago, let’s get down to the real problem we’re confronting, which is keeping these weapons out of the hands of people who are mentally ill. And I think all the rest of this stuff is really essentially rhetoric until we really get that problem dealt with, in terms of regulatory approaches.

Readers are advised to study every word of his testimony.  And then do it again.  This is very important.

Sessions was probably owned by the deep state in some manner or other, but in any event he was just stolid and dense.  He focused his energies on making sure we had huge resources devoted to combatting marijuana.  Barr seems much more smarter, and therefore much more dangerous.

As to whether the founders believed they were following the enlightenment and John Locke as opposed to the Apostle Paul and John Calvin, I cannot say.  Men much smarter than me – R. J. Rushdoony, C. Gregg Singer and Douglas Kelly – have engaged in detailed debates about that, and I encourage you to read their analyses rather than listen to me.  It’s likely based on what I know that there was a sufficient mix of enlightenment thinkers and Calvinists that each side could claim credit for what’s in the constitution, and it was the best compromise they could come up with given the makeup of the group.

As to the actual right to self preservation, I claim, without apology, that neither you nor I have such a right outside of the decrees of God stipulated in the Holy Writ.  And it’s there in clear detail, so yes, we have that right.  The right of self defense and defense of home and hearth lies in the decrees and therefore in the nature of God.  It is ensconced firmly there, not in the second amendment.  The constitution is a covenant between men, not a source of anything, much less human rights.

But according to Barr, there’s “room reasonable regulation.”  Regulation decided by men, running counter to God’s holy decrees if necessary.  And according to Barr, it’s necessary if the benefit to public safety outweighs whatever right a judge or politician says you have.

Red flag laws.  Trump likely knew all about Barr’s views before nominating him.  Barr will also likely give high priority to finding passage of such laws as constitutional.  He’ll put his best lawyers on it.  He’ll also work hard to come up with lists of “prohibited persons,” and who knows at this time what a prohibited person will look like?

He defers to community witch doctors deciding the fate of God-given rights based on “mental illness,” when it’s been demonstrated over and over again that mental illness, whatever that is, has nothing whatsoever to do with propensity to violence.  So he believes in myths and is willing to use the force of the DoJ to back up his beliefs.

These are dangerous times, and I predict Trump’s nominee will end up being one of the biggest threats to 2A rights in American history if he stays in his position.  Obama managed to do virtually nothing to restrict gun rights compared to Trump and his cabinet.  All with the approval of the NRA folks in Fairfax, VA.

Red-Flag Law Gun Confiscations In Maryland

BY Herschel Smith
2 days, 23 hours ago

The Washington Post:

Maryland courts have seized guns from 148 people in the three months since the state enacted a law designed to take weapons from people who are danger to themselves or others.

Four of the gun owners posed “significant threats” to schools, an official told state lawmakers Tuesday.

Montgomery County Sheriff Darren M. Popkin (D), who has helped train police officers across the state about the “red-flag” law, said he could not provide details about the gun seizures — including those that could have led to school shootings — because of a confidentiality rule.

But, Popkin told the House Judiciary Committee, “these orders . . . are saving lives.”

As I’ve said before, the communist project is nearly complete.

Say, I was wondering, if the department of pre-crime is any good, why haven’t we seen a precipitous reduction in the number of spree crimes?  Surely, half of their predictions for the future should be accurate, right?  We require that of weather forecasters, don’t we?

Prophets, all of them.  Surely.  It also comes to mind that God required false prophets be killed in the O.T. (Deuteronomy 13:13).  I wonder how many of these forecasters would be willing to put their life on the line for their fortune telling and witch-doctoring?

Border Rancher: “We’ve Found Prayer Rugs Out Here”

BY Herschel Smith
2 days, 23 hours ago

Washington Examiner:

Ranchers and farmers near the U.S.-Mexico border have been finding prayer rugs on their properties in recent months, according to one rancher who asked to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation by cartels who move the individuals.

The mats are pieces of carpet that those of the Muslim faith kneel on as they worship.

“There’s a lot of people coming in not just from Mexico,” the rancher said. “People, the general public, just don’t get the terrorist threats of that. That’s what’s really scary. You don’t know what’s coming across. We’ve found prayer rugs out here. It’s unreal. It’s not just Mexican nationals that are coming across.”

[ … ]

Border Patrol and its parent agency, Customs and Border Protection, did not respond to multiple interview requests. But CBP’s Arizona region issued a statement on Twitter Wednesday that said agents had arrested people from across the world over the past five days.

Did you catch the bolded part? (Bold mine).

But doesn’t it all make you feel warm inside knowing that they “Come for love?”  David Codrea has related thoughts, surely correct.

On a related note, the Middle East Forum sent a note out saying this.

The Middle East Forum has learned that New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy will conduct a State of the State town hall event at the Islamic Center of Passaic County (ICPC) in northern New Jersey tonight—a mosque with a long history of pro-Hamas leadership.

The ICPC’s current imam, Mohammad Qatanani, has terrorist connections galore: His own lawyer admits that he was a member of the student chapter of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan, and the N.J. Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness identifies Qatanani as a Hamas supporter. Qatanani is currently fighting deportation on the grounds that he lied to federal officials about his Israeli conviction for membership Hamas.

This is the man who recently signed six gun control bills into law.  He’s willing to buddy-up with terrorists, but he wants to disarm peaceable men and women.

Lowered Standards In The Green Berets

BY Herschel Smith
2 days, 23 hours ago

Breitbart:

Two Army Green Berets are fighting for their military careers after being associated with an anonymous email that accused their commanders of lowering standards to enable more soldiers — particularly female — to graduate from its prestigious Q-course.

The anonymous email, signed, “A concerned Green Beret,” accused the leaders of the school of “moral cowardice” for lowering the standards, and weakening instructors’ ability to discipline students as they look to get further through the pipeline.

“[The school] has devolved into a cesspool of toxic, exploitive, biased and self-serving senior officers who are bolstered by submissive, sycophantic, and just-as-culpable enlisted leaders,” the email said. “They have doggedly succeeded in two things; furthering their careers, and ensuring that Special Forces [are] more prolific but dangerously less capable than ever before.”

One of the specific complaints was that the Special Forces Qualification Course (SFQC), commonly referred to as “Q-course,” was restructured so that there were “no physical barriers to earning the coveted Green Beret.”

[ … ]

The Marine Corps, which was the most resistant, has made recent headlines for integrating a female platoon into a previously all-male battalion at Parris Island, S.C., and for its first female Marine officer graduating from the Scout Sniper Unit Leaders Course.

As I’ve said before, the communist project is nearly complete.  And the country’s leadership was and continues to be a willing and culpable partner.

SCOTUS Declines To Rule On Matthew Whitaker’s Appointment As Acting Attorney General

BY Herschel Smith
4 days ago

CNBC:

In an unusual maneuver, Goldstein also used the case to raise the question of whether Trump’s acting attorney general, Matthew Whitaker, was constitutionally appointed.

Trump appointed Whitaker in November after forcing out Jeff Sessions. Critics immediately pounced on the appointment, arguing that it was unlawful because Whitaker had not been confirmed by the Senate to the post he held at the time of his elevation to acting attorney general.

Goldstein made his client’s gun rights case into a vehicle for resolving the issue and urged the justices to resolve both matters. He did so simply by asking the court to change the name of the case.

He asked the court to name the case Barry Michaels v. Rod Rosenstein, rather than Barry Michaels v. Matthew Whitaker. In briefs, Goldstein acknowledged that his argument was unusual but said he saw the issue as urgent.

“Yes, the Court can blink at that reality, decline to act, and move on,” Goldstein wrote in one November brief. “But history will regret that it did.”

The court declined Goldstein’s request to change the name of the case in addition to the underlying 2nd Amendment question.

Presumably, thus goes down one objection to the Trump bump stock ban, i.e., that it was approved by an unconstitutional AG (not the subject of this CNBC article).  It was, but apparently the Supreme Court doesn’t care to visit the question.

The Difficulty Of Language In The Interpretation Of Trump’s View Of Gun Rights

BY Herschel Smith
4 days ago

There is no shortage of Trump supporters, here on this blog or elsewhere.  And there is no shortage of Trump detractors.  It occurs to me that sometimes language is a barrier to communication rather than the vehicle for it.

Trump might be engaging repeatedly in 3D chess, or he might not.  His art of the deal might be selling out your rights for his benefit, or it might not be.

But in either case, it must be remembered that his predilections are those of a Northeastern progressive, with certain conservative tendencies.  He isn’t a reliable, ideologically committed conservative, or a conservative (or libertarian) based on incorrigible principle.

The strata in which he communicates and flows is ever changing, a non-fixed, malleable, very unpredictable morass of ideas and statements.  The problem comes in because of the nature of language itself.  Language, as American philosopher Gordon H. Clark said, is comprised of words and sentences, all of which is designed as tags and signifiers to help one person communicate a thought to another.

When he says that he supports gun rights, he may not be saying the same thing you think you’re hearing.  Or in other words, gun rights to him means something different than gun rights to you.  It’s a safe bet that gun rights to him means submission to the authorities, full and complete, so that red flag laws wouldn’t be a problem to him.  He believes in no principle that would cause him to oppose red flag laws.

Likewise, the notion that anyone might need or want a stock is silly, and so given that there is no principle to which he can refer to oppose such a ban, he supported it.  His nomination of Barr for AG falls into the same category.  He liked what Barr had to say about the “witch hunt” to which Trump himself was subjected, and thus he will be the next AG.

Trump can appear in front of the NRA and say all sorts of things that sound as if he supports gun rights the way you support gun rights.  He isn’t lying.  he just sees things differently.  His entire world and life view is different.  But when you get past those tags that are supposed to communicate thoughts from one person to another, his ideas are far different from most real gun rights supporters.

You cannot listen to Trump on a pedestrian level, as a freshman in college.  You must understand the nature of language, how it differs from person to person, its potential lack of clarity, and how the tags that are words can be confused, misinterpreted, and misjudged, and thus become vehicles for communicating the wrong thoughts.  Language can be clear, but in order to make it so, the speaker and hearer must arrive at compatible definitions and use the care necessary to define thinking men and women.

James Wesley Rawles On The Legislative Onslaught Against Gun Rights

BY Herschel Smith
4 days ago

Via WRSA, at Survival Blog, Rawles has a great analysis of the current attempts by the statists to undermine recognition of your God-given rights.

It’s a very comprehensive analysis, and as always, Rawles is well worth the time.  Also as always, share your thoughts and comments.

Trump Signals Support For Renewed Assault Weapons Ban

BY Herschel Smith
5 days, 1 hour ago

UPDATE: My oldest son points out that this is from a year ago.  I asked him if that is important?  He says, “The Art of War” is necessary for understanding Trump.  It’s difficult to understand whether he’s serious or simply tactically owning or feigning positions.  My response: Then why the red flag laws and bump stock ban?

Via Uncle, this isn’t the Onion.  It’s real.

President Donald Trump raised the issue, unprompted, during a roughly hour-long televised meeting with Feinstein and other members of Congress Wednesday afternoon at the White House. “I think it’s something you have to think about,” Trump said at the gathering to discuss school safety. “It doesn’t make sense that I have to wait until I’m 21 to get a handgun but I can get this weapon at 18,” he added, referring to assault rifles.

Trump’s comments came the same day Feinstein and Arizona Republican Sen. Jeff Flake formally rolled out their bipartisan legislation to raise the minimum age for purchasing assault weapons and high capacity magazines from 18 to 21. The California Democrat, sitting directly to the president’s left at the White House meeting, interjected at one point, asking if he’d sign legislation to raise the age to 21.

Trump said he’d give it “serious thought,” even though he acknowledged the National Rifle Association opposed such a proposal. The president said he’d been “asked that question more than any other question” in the wake of the Feb. 14 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, which killed 17 people.

He also didn’t rule out the idea of outlawing assault weapons, like the semi-automatic AR-15 rifle gunman Nikolas Cruz used to mow down students and teachers at Stoneman Douglas High. Feinstein pitched her 2017 legislation to renew the ban at the beginning of the meeting, handing Trump a copy of the bill. She was the author of the original assault weapons ban that President Bill Clinton signed into law in 1994. It expired in 2004.

Later, the president asked Sens. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania and Joe Manchin of West Virginia if they could fold Feinstein’s legislation (and another proposal from Minnesota Democratic Sen. Amy Klobucher) into their bipartisan background checks bill. “Can you add what Amy and Dianne have, can you add them in?” Trump asked. Feinstein’s gleeful reaction, smiling widely and appearing to plead with Toomey and Manchin, immediately began circulating on Twitter.

Don’t be surprised.  The “Let’s make a deal” president famously said during his campaign that “Everything is negotiable.”  By that he meant everything, including recognition of your rights.  We all knew that then, and we still know it today.  Nothing has changed.

Trump may be just a stupid hack with Northern progressive proclivities who doesn’t understand his base.  But then he could also be a Manchurian candidate for the deep state.  What else would explain his nomination of Sessions for AG, his leaving Mueller, Comey and Rosenstein in positions of authority, and his support for red flag laws and the bump stock ban?  Who knows except him?  In any case, time is running out, and the state is evolving to an even more draconian tyranny.

There is also the support by the NRA that organization will have to answer for.  Was their support just stupid, or was there some ulterior motive?

Overweight Operator

BY Herschel Smith
5 days, 1 hour ago

Remember me saying this?

Some folks in the patriot community talk about wearing body armor, whether soft or plate.  Don’t even discuss that, don’t even consider that, if you can’t strap on a 50 pound pack and make a climb, perhaps not this difficult, but one like it.

Well, they’re not talking about wearing body armor, at least not in this video, but nonetheless my counsel remains.  If you’re not in good shape, stop worrying about the hardware and get in shape.  You’re getting the cart before the horse.

Indiana Police Officer Shot By Partner As The Clueless Cops Force Her To Walk To Get Help

BY Herschel Smith
5 days, 23 hours ago

Via WiscoDave, this sad tale.

An Indiana police officer is in critical but stable condition after she was accidentally shot by her partner while on duty.

The Lafayette Police Department released body camera footage showing Officer Lane Butler, her partner Aaron Wright and a third officer searching a home for a fugitive on January 8.

After the officers failed to find the suspect inside, Butler is seen on camera exiting the home with Wright following behind her with his gun drawn.

Authorities say that’s when a dog inside the home attacked Wright, causing him to fire his gun and strike Butler in the back.

Butler was wearing a bulletproof vest, but the bullet hit right above it in her shoulder.

‘Our conclusion in this incident was this was not a result of an act of negligence, carelessness or otherwise reckless behavior,’ Lafayette Police Chief Patrick Flannelly said at a press conference Friday. ‘It was accidental.’

Police say the dog escaped its cage and attacked Wright from behind. In the video the dog can be heard barking loudly before he fired.

Butler immediately collapsed to the ground outside of the home and the officers in the video can be heard shouting, ‘What happened?’

Body camera footage shows the two officers coming to assist Butler.

Wright runs to flag down another police car responding to the scene and they help Butler inside, who remains conscious throughout.

An ambulance eventually arrives and they as they load her into the back, Butler appears to be going into shock and collapses.

Full body-cam video is at the link.  Don’t take my word for what happened or the things I intend to say about this.  Go watch it for yourself.

Tactically speaking, this is simply the weirdest thing I’ve ever witnessed.  They are traipsing through the domicile with no intent, no method, and no procdure.

They are holding their pistols way up in the air like gang-bangers, and they are using their weapons-mounted lights as assistance to search the home.  Thus, every time they need a light, they have to point their firearms in the direction of interest.  Next, he has his finger on the trigger of the gun, or otherwise, he has his finger on the weapons-mounted light (my Streamlight doesn’t work that way, and for good reason), but the dog scares him, and sympathetic muscle reflexes cause him to discharge his weapons.

They force the wounded cop to walk to his patrol car, learn that an ambulance is arriving, and then force her to walk and drag her to the ambulance in order to get help.  Finally, do you think if you or I had been scared by a dog and had our finger our weapons in ANY situation at all, and discharged the weapon injuring someone else, we would be released without charges?

I’ve said it before, having cops around in the most dangerous thing that can ever happen in your life.  They can’t be trusted with firearms.



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