The Totalitarians Among Us

Herschel Smith · 03 Mar 2014 · 15 Comments

Victor Davis Hanson observes: In short, Obama will always poll around 45 percent. That core support is his lasting legacy. In a mere five years, by the vast expansion of federal spending, by the demonizing rhetoric of his partisan bully pulpit, and by executive orders and bizarre appointments, Obama has so divided the nation that he has created a permanent constituency that will never care as much about what he does as it cares about what he says and represents. For elite rich liberals…… [read more]

Gun Valley Moves South

BY Herschel Smith
6 days, 7 hours ago

From comes an article worth reading on gun valley moving South.  This figures is taken from that article.


So where is Smith & Wesson, and Rock River Arms, and Kimber?  Still in the land of labor unions rather than right-to-work states?

Why Are Colt And Stag Arms Still In Connecticut?

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 2 weeks ago

When Stag Arms of New Britain wanted to produce a scaled-down version of a popular AR-15 rifle that was banned last April by Connecticut — part of a broader crackdown that was upheld Thursday by a U.S. District Court judge in Hartford — it ran the specifications by law enforcement.

“Right off the bat, they were helpful,” said Mark Malkowski, the company’s president and owner. “They did look at prototypes. They did this about three times. After that, they said it really wasn’t their responsibility to determine what was legal or not.”

The reluctance of the State Police to put its seal of approval on the Stag 22, a semi-automatic rifle that accepts lower-caliber bullets and fewer rounds of ammunition than its predecessor, is emblematic of an ongoing tension between the firearms industry and law enforcement over weapons development.

State police spokesman Lt. J. Paul Vance said his agency would hate to sign off on a gun, only to have one of its components render it illegal on a technicality.

“Are we going to be responsible for that?” said Vance, who became a household name for his many news conferences following the Dec. 14, 2012, massacre. “It’s their responsibility to make sure it conforms to the letter of the law.”

[ ... ]

A majority of gun manufacturers are said by industry observers to be far along in the process of converting their traditional AR-15 rifles into .22-caliber models for sale in Connecticut, including Colt’s Manufacturing, the granddaddy of the state’s firearms industry. Multiple requests for comment were left with Colt, which was founded in 1836 in Hartford and employs about 600 people in the state.

In most modification cases, what is known as a center-fire mechanism is swapped out for a rim-fire mechanism. This inhibits the rifle’s ability to accept higher-caliber bullets like those used at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

[ ... ]

Shooting purists are not as keen about .22-caliber rifles and the rimfire mechanism …

First of all, what an absurd, stolid article, e.g., low-caliber bullets, high caliber bullets, and so on.  Second, I’ll bet “shooting purists are not keen about .22-caliber rifles” in the AR-15 platform (if by that they mean .22LR).

There is a time and place for a .22LR long gun, for teaching youngsters to shoot, plinking, killing small game, etc.  I learned to shoot as a youngster with a .22LR long gun.  Those were good days.

But with Stag Arms trying to construct a long gun with these specifications in the AR platform, and with the future about this weapon known to everyone who understands these things (it won’t sell and it’s a waste of time and money to develop it), the question necessarily arises “Why is Stag Arms still in Connecticut?”  And “Why is Colt still in Connecticut?”  And as for that matter, “Why are Connecticut shooters still citizens of Connecticut?”

Come South, men.  Come South.

Beretta To Open Plant In Tennessee

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 2 weeks ago

Fox17 Nashville:

NASHVILLE, Tenn.– Gallatin Industrial Park will be the new site for Beretta USA’s firearms manufacturing and R&D facility.

The move is expected to bring 300 new jobs in Sumner County according to Governor Bill Haslam. The facility itself will see an investment of $45 million dollars.

Executive vice-president Franco Gussalli Beretta says Governor Haslam and his economic team played a large role in “demonstrating the benefits of doing business in the state.”

Construction is expected to be completed this year.

Beretta had announced their plans to move from Maryland after the recent gun control measures passed, and we were waiting for it to happen.  I have several thoughts, but I’m tempted to say that Beretta is the loser because they didn’t choose South Carolina.

Honestly though, Maryland is the real loser in all of this, as is Connecticut, Colorado, and any other state that pursues these idiotic gun control measures.  And let’s be clear about one thing before the objection even gets raised like it was for Smith & Wesson when they announced that they were pulling out of the California market.  These companies are doing what they must to survive.  We gun owners are faithful rewarders of our friends and allies, and relentless and unforgiving punishers of compromisers.

Smith & Wesson, Remington, Kimber, Colt, Rock River Arms, Springfield Armory, are you listening?

Gun Manufacturers: Why Are You Still In New York?

BY Herschel Smith
3 months ago

Communist Cuomo in his own words.

The amusing thing is that he tried to walk this back by quoting his own words which are exactly as recorded above.  I’ve said it many times before, and I’ll say it again.  I plan my gun purchases around not buying products made in New York if possible.

So Remington, Kimber, and any other gun manufacturers still in New York – I have one question.  Why?  Why haven’t you relocated to another state where I can once again consider doing business with your company?

Good Customer Experience With Springfield Armory

BY Herschel Smith
5 months, 1 week ago

During this day at the range in Pickens, S.C., the range officer that day, a gunsmith named Donnie Lostraglio, noticed that the discharged casings from my Springfield Armory .45 XDm were scorched on one side.  He felt that the barrel was possibly out of round, and pointed this out to me and recommended that I take the gun by a gun shop where I live.  I had put perhaps 2000 rounds through the weapon and either I hadn’t noticed this or the issue developed over time.

Several weeks later I took the weapon by Hyatt Gun Shop, where the gunsmiths are excellent.  They measured the barrel to be 4 mils out of round, and recommended that I send it back to Springfield Armory to see if this might be an issue covered by warranty.

I began interacting with Mr. Robert Dominacki of Springfield Armory, and I noticed that it did take several e-mails to flush out exactly what I should do.  Springfield wanted my entire weapon as opposed to just sending in the barrel in order to see if any other part of the gun was malfunctioning.

In order to make this happen, Robert issued a return merchandise authorization to have the Springfield technicians examine my gun.  Springfield paid for the shipment through FedEx, both to the factory and back to me.  While Robert told me that it could be up to six weeks, I received it back within a week of receipt by Springfield with a new barrel, tested by their technicians to function just fine with the replacement barrel, a match grade 4.5″ .45 ACP just like I sent to them.

My interaction with FedEx wasn’t so precise.  The shipment back to me was made in such a manner that it could not be held at the FedEx hub because it is a firearm.  Furthermore, when you call FedEx you cannot reach their hubs, you can only reach their national number.  I started an account with FedEx in order to hold my shipment at the shipping hub but that option wasn’t allowed for this shipment.

FedEx attempted to deliver the package once and left a door tag because I wasn’t at home (I have a job).  I just happened to be at home when FedEx made the second attempt so I got my package.  Had this been attempted three times by FedEx I’m not sure what would have happened (would it have gone back to Illinois?).

I have complaints about FedEx being unreachable and unwilling to work with me on shipment of the firearm.  I have absolutely no complaints about Springfield Armory.  Some readers may complain that the barrel was out-of-round to begin with, but with that many firearms being made, some issues will be found.  I don’t expect manufacturers to be perfect.  I expect them to make good on their promises.  Springfield Armory did exactly that, and I continue to enjoy my fine firearm from them.  All around, this was a good customer experience.

Remington Scouts Middle Tennessee

BY Herschel Smith
8 months ago

The Tennessean:

One of the nation’s largest gun manufacturers, Remington Arms, has looked at sites around Nashville for a potential corporate relocation or expansion that would likely include hundreds of manufacturing jobs.

The Madison, N.C.-based company, which is part of the nation’s largest firearms company and has its largest plant in Ilion, N.Y., has scouted sites near Nashville’s airport, Lebanon and in Clarksville, Tenn.

Remington is among a growing number of gun manufacturers nationwide that have been courted by states pitching themselves as more gun-friendly. The wooing came after a handful of states, including New York, passed tougher gun control laws in the aftermath of last December’s shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., which claimed the lives of 20 first-graders and six educators.

Remington’s roughly 1,200-employee plant in Ilion makes rifles such as the Bushmaster semiautomatic weapon, which is now banned under New York’s Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act, the first law passed by any state post-Newtown.

In addition to the much stricter definition of assault weapons, which now includes semiautomatic pistols and rifles with detachable magazines and one military-style feature, the New York SAFE Act banned magazines that contain more than seven rounds, required instant background checks on all ammunition purchases at the time of the sale and required mental health professionals to report concerns about a gun-owning patient who posed a risk of harming himself or others.

Quick passage of that law upset not only the gunmakers, but also residents of that state who own certain guns, said Erin Crowe, office coordinator for the Mohawk Valley Chamber of Commerce in Utica, N.Y. “Ilion, New York, is Remington — if it wasn’t for Remington, Ilion wouldn’t exist,” she said. “There’s not a lot of new industries coming to central New York, so if you take a huge company like that and they leave, our unemployment rate is going to skyrocket.”

People familiar with Remington’s exploration of sites said the company looked around the Nashville area as recently as within the past month …

In Middle Tennessee, firearms maker Barrett already has 100 employees at its headquarters and manufacturing plant in Murfreesboro. And the National Rifle Association booked Nashville’s Music City Center convention hall for its 2015 annual convention with about 5,000 delegates.

Analysis & Commentary

This would be a welcome change.  Cerebus / Freedom group, as we’ve seen, purchased numerous smaller gun manufacturers and closed out business while moving said manufacturing to Ilion.  They conglomerated and centralized, and that is good neither for small businesses nor the communities they serve.  There is a difference between buying to make businesses more efficient from business model changes, and buying in order to close down the competition.

Furthermore, in spite of the silly, fawning article National Review did on the plant in Ilion, gun owners never forgive and never forget.  As we’ve discussed, see the Smith & Wesson boycott for a lesson in payback.  Doubtless, Remington Arms didn’t support the recent New York gun laws.  Nevertheless, at least a fraction of money going to purchase Remington products made in Ilion goes towards taxation for a totalitarian state to continue to do their thing.

In the end, I would have preferred that Remington relocate based on principle.  But as I have previously remarked, I am in the market for a good bolt action rifle and was looking at the Remington 700 series.  I am no longer considering Remington at all (for a 1911 either) because of the fact that Remington is primarily located in New York.  Some of my readers weighed in similarly.  With this change, if Remington indeed relocates its plant in Ilion, perhaps I’ll reconsider.  If principle cannot force Remington to move, then perhaps market pressure can.  Ruger is already ahead of the game.

Finally, I would prefer that Remington consider South Carolina.  Remember, anywhere in S.C. is no more than several hours from one of the best beaches on earth and some of the most beautiful mountains on earth.  Then again, Middle Tennessee ain’t bad.  Remington should be encouraged to move.  Their employees can enjoy the vista at Mount Le Conte and Clingman’s Dome within a few hours drive from where they will live.  They will find good churches, and the people are warm and friendly.

Make it happen without delay.

PTR Industries Abandons Connecticut For South Carolina

BY Herschel Smith
10 months ago

PTR Industries released a statement not long ago that read in part:

With a heavy heart but a clear mind, we have been forced to decide that our business can no longer survive in Connecticut – the former Constitution state.

Furthermore, we feel that our industry as a whole will continue to be threatened so long as it remains in a state where its elected leaders have no regard for the rights of those who produce and manufacture its wealth. We are making a call to all involved in our industry to leave this state, close your doors and show our politicians the true consequences of their hasty and uninformed actions. We encourage those in our industry to abandon this state as its leaders have abandoned the proud heritage that forged our freedom.

This is a strong statement, and pertains not only to what PTR Industries intends to do with their own business, but their admonition to other manufacturers in Connecticut (are you listening, Colt and Mossberg?).  But now we know where they are headed.

A Connecticut gun manufacturer is moving to South Carolina after Connecticut lawmakers passed stricter gun-control laws in the aftermath of the fatal Sandy Hook School shootings.

PTR Industries will make the formal announcement next week at a ribbon-cutting to be attended by South Carolina Republican Gov. Nikki Haley, according to The Sun News of Myrtle Beach.

The company is going to Horry County, which includes Myrtle Beach, and has already approved a resolution setting out the terms of the company’s move.

County Council Chairman Mark Lazarus says he’s excited about the development.  

Josh Fiorini, PTR’s chief executive officer, says the plant will employ 140 people, many of whom will relocate from Connecticut. The move will take place over three years.

The company said it had been contacted by 41 states and selected South Carolina from six finalists.

This is a nice area, and both PTR Industries and South Carolina will be better for this move.  As I’ve said before, there is no better or surer teacher than consequences.  This trend continues the instruction to totalitarians.

Colt To Texas?

BY Herschel Smith
1 year ago

Has hell frozen over?

A firearms company that makes AR-15 style rifles for the iconic brand Colt, will open a plant in Breckenridge in Stephens County. Oregon company Bold Ideas confirmed the development Friday.

Bold Ideas goes by the name Colt Competition, making high accuracy rifles for competition shooting.

The company has not officially announced the opening, but employment applications are already available at the Breckenridge Chamber of Commerce. A non-specific, help wanted ad appeared in the local newspaper classifieds earlier in the week.

Sources say Colt Competition will move into a large vacant industrial space on the north side of town, previously used by Karsten Homes to manufacture mobile homes.

The move by Colt Competition into Breckenridge comes as the CEO of Colt Manufacturing in Connecticut has said there will soon be few good answers to keep his company in the state. Connecticut passed some of the nation’s most restrictive gun laws this week.

It also comes weeks after Governor Rick Perry reportedly sent letters to gun companies, encouraging them to move to Texas. Perry sent a message on Twitter to Colorado company Magpul as recently as March 21, saying “Come on Down to Texas.” The Governor’s office did not confirm Friday if it had sent a recruitment letter to Colt Competition.

Remember this comment, seemingly confident?

Like on so many occasions in the company’s history, Colt’s CEO has his head up his ass.
1.) Colt’s “ties” to Connecticut are just lengthy because of tenure. They’re not “deep” because the state would ban Colt’s product and put them out of business tomorrow, if it could.
2.) Colt’s real legacy is in the West — can any other manufacturer EVER compete with the picture of a cowboy holding a Colt Dragoon, Navy or Peacemaker? If Colt were serious about their “heritage”, they’d long ago have moved out of the gun-hating East and moved West, to a state which would not only welcome them, but protect them.
3.) Colt probably thinks that the military will save them. I imagine that the manufacturers of Garands, M14s and M1 Carbines probably thought the same.
4.) Colt regards the civilian market with the same regard as a man does his laundry: tiresome, but something that must be looked after. (Run your eye down a list of wonderful, beautiful Colt models which have long since disappeared from their catalogue because of “lack of demand” and then look at the prices which second-hand Diamondbacks now command.)
5.) One of the reasons Colt’s civilian guns suffer is because they are expensive compared to the competition. One of the reasons ANY product is expensive is high overhead — reasons such as real estate, taxes and salaries. Anyone care to compare the salaries of Connecticut with, oh, Texas, Oklahoma or Arizona in comparable jobs?

Let Colt sleep in the bed they’ve made in Connecticut. Good luck to them.

So was the comment wrong?  What do readers know of this move by Colt, and how much of the company does this segment represent?

Governor Hickenlooper Signs Colorado Gun Control Bill

BY Herschel Smith
1 year, 1 month ago

Denver Post:


Gov. John Hickenlooper signed bills Wednesday that place new restrictions on firearms and signaled a change for Democrats who traditionally shied away from gun control debate in Colorado – a state with a moderate streak and pioneer tradition of gun ownership and self-reliance.

Hickenlooper’s signature of the bills comes exactly eight months after dozens of people were shot in a movie theater in suburban Denver, the day after the executive director of the state’s Corrections Department was shot and killed at his home.

Police were searching for the person who killed Tom Clements, and trying to figure out if the attack was related to his job.

The bills require background checks for private and online gun sales and ban ammunition magazines that hold more than 15 rounds.

Hickenlooper was surrounded by lawmakers who sponsored the bills at the signing ceremony. Before signing the first bill, which requires purchasers to pay fees for background checks, he looked around with a solemn look on his face and then began signing it.

Every time he signed a bill, applause erupted from lawmakers and their guests …

So be it.  It’s now time for Magpul to leave and take its revenue and jobs with them.  When laws like this are implemented it’s always the duty of every individual to study the bill itself, sometimes including case law that ensues from the bill.  Gun forums don’t do justice to the complexity of most gun control bills, and every visitor to the State of Colorado is in danger of some sort of new violation of their laws, which most of the time would be felonies.  It just isn’t worth my time to study the law.

I have visited Colorado only once to ski in Breckenridge.  It was a wonderful experience, and sadly, one that will not be a recurring trip.  Not only will I not risk any sort of violation of their new law, but I won’t reward Colorado for their actions today.  I have friends and readers in Colorado and I don’t wish them ill.  But now that Colorado has been proven to be an anti-gun state, they will feel the wrath of gun owners and gun manufacturers.  They should consider their future through the lens of firearms at a time when their chief of the department of corrections was just gunned down.  Will the criminals have such a hard time getting what they want?

My treatment of Colorado won’t be any different than my treatment of other gun-control states.  I steadfastly refuse to drive through or even fly over New York, New Jersey, Illinois, or Maryland.  If I drive through with a weapon I must know their idiotic laws.  If I fly over with a weapon I might have to make an unscheduled landing in one of their cities.

I don’t take pleasure in seeing friends suffer under totalitarianism.  But when we look for work-arounds and fill in the gaps for others, we prevent the learning experience that comes from bad decisions.  Consequences bring the gift of wisdom.  For half a century now America has raised its children to avoid consequences, and partly for that reason we are where we are.

In this case, may Colorado get exactly what they have asked for, and exactly what they so richly deserve.   Tonight I will go home and order some Magpul hats, clothing and accessories (I already have their AR-15 magazines).  I will never again visit Colorado, and depending upon what other manufacturers do (Remington has made their bed, are you listening, Colt?  Rock River Arms?  Kimber?  Springfield Armory?), I will look for ways to reward the faithful and punish the wicked.  And there are millions of gun owners just like me.

Update On Gun Manufacturers Moving To More Friendly States

BY Herschel Smith
1 year, 1 month ago

After some mind numbing repetition of things we already knew, this Fox Business article does a good job of updating us on the status of things with at least some of the gun manufacturers.

According to a report from the NSSF, Connecticut stands to lose 1,768 jobs, $13.5 million in business tax revenue and $450 million in economic activity if Colt, Mossberg & Sons and Stag Arms move elsewhere.

Overall, the firearms industry accounts for $1.75 billion in economic activity and 7,340 direct and indirect jobs in Connecticut.

“A lot of these manufacturers have called Connecticut home for years, but now that they continue to be vilified, they have to consider if they want to stay,” McGuigan said, adding that local communities heavily rely on many firearms manufacturers.

Stag Arms is one of those companies. Located in New Britain, Conn., Stag Arms has become a well-known manufacturer of modern sporting rifles and employs nearly 200 people. It hired 40 new people last year amid 60% growth, and is working on a one-year backlog of 70,000 rifles. But with the uncertainty there over a potential ban on its products, Stag Arms put further expansion in a fourth factory building on hold.

Would the company consider moving in the wake of a Connecticut gun ban? “Absolutely,” Stag Arms President and CEO Mark Malkowski said. “If the state’s not going to be supportive, we have to consider moving.”

The possibility that Mossberg or Colt would relocate had occurred to me.  However, I was unaware that Stag Arms would consider moving.  This is a positive sign.  I’m also waiting on Magpul to announce their formal plans to relocate, if their words are to be believed.

Bob Owens was first to the report about Remington remaining in New York, and in fact, expanding their production facilities there.  This is disappointing to me, and – mark my words – this decision will harm Remington.  Just recently it was announced that Remington won an $80 million contract for a new sniper rifle for the U.S. Army.

Big news, right?  Well, take a quick look at comments over reddit/guns.  No one is thrilled, no one is congratulating Remington, no one is praising the civilian unavailability of this rifle, and no one is willing to pay this price for a weapon like this.

We await decisions by Beretta, Stag Arms, Magpul, Mossberg, Kimber, Springfield Armory, and Rock River Arms.  Contact me at any time.

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