The Paradox and Absurdities of Carbon-Fretting and Rewilding

Herschel Smith · 28 Jan 2024 · 4 Comments

The Bureau of Land Management is planning a truly boneheaded move, angering some conservationists over the affects to herd populations and migration routes.  From Field & Stream. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) recently released a draft plan outlining potential solar energy development in the West. The proposal is an update of the BLM’s 2012 Western Solar Plan. It adds five new states—Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming—to a list of 11 western states already earmarked…… [read more]

The Final Collapse Of Obama’s Foreign Policy: A Nuclear Iran

BY Herschel Smith
11 years, 8 months ago

We’re all painfully aware of the impotence of the curent administration in the area of foreign policy.  The world simply doesn’t listen to us – or, they do, but it’s only to gauge the timing of their next move.

But this recent signal from an administration representative is about as clear a statement of withdrawn interests and intentions as one can imagine.

Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of U.S. armed forces, said he does not wish to be “complicit” in a unilateral Israeli strike on Iran.

Dempsey said Thursday that such an attack would “clearly delay but probably not destroy Iran’s nuclear program,” the London Guardian reported. He added, “I don’t want to be complicit if they choose to do it.”

This statement does three things.  First, it demonstrates the administration to be liars when they have claimed that they will not allow Iran to go nuclear.  Second, it clearly shows that if Israel launches an attack on Iran, she will go it alone.  Essentially, Israel is thrown under the bus.  The additional assertion in the report that we do not know Iran’s nuclear intentions, “as intelligence did not clearly reveal them,” is code for saying that we will never know because our intelligence community will never go on record saying that Iran has designs on a nuclear weapons program.  Timing isn’t germane to this conversation according to the statement.  The context is whether we know Iran’s “intentions,” a precondition that always supplies plausible deniability and makes everything else irrelevant.

Third, and most important, it explicitly acquiesces to a nuclear Iran.  Read again:  ” … such an attack would “clearly delay but probably not destroy Iran’s nuclear program.”  This also makes everything else about intentions an irrelevant obfuscation.  The balance of the communication from Dempsey is just a smoke screen.  This administration believes that they cannot stop an Iranian nuclear program.

The signals to the Iranian Mullahs couldn’t be clearer.  Proceed apace with your nuclear weapons program, we don’t think you can be stopped anyway.  There are others within the U.S. military community who foolishly believe that the U.S. can live with a nuclear Iran, John Abizaid for one ( I suspect that there are many more).  But here, Dempsey is speaking for more than just himself.  Despite what the administration has claimed, they do not believe they can know the intentions of the Iranian program, they do not intend to assist Israel for fear of appearing complicit, and they don’t even think they can stop Iran if they tried.  Case closed.

Upon inauguration, Mitt Romney’s second duty should be the dismissal of the joint chiefs of staff, including the chairman, and replacement of them with men who have some backbone.  That includes flag officers who work for them and make excuses for green on blue violence in Afghanistan by asserting that the pressures of the Ramadan fast made them do it.

But the 50,000 foot view is one of wreck.  The Obama foreign policy has collapsed, and it is obscene and unseemly.  It’s as if I am passing by some awful, bloody crash on the highway, and want to look away but can’t.  It should shame every American to witness what our country has wrought.

New Jersey Shopping Plaza Shooting

BY Herschel Smith
11 years, 8 months ago

Little seems to be known about it at this point, but three are dead, including the shooter.

Three people died early this morning, including an alleged gunman who apparently killed himself, after a shooting inside a New Jersey shopping plaza.

Police in New Jersey responded to shots inside a Pathmark supermarket on Route 9 in Old Bridge, N.J., at 4 a.m.

“This is the worst phone call a mayor can receive,” Mayor Owen Henry told of the information he obtained about 6:30 a.m. “You can prepare for these things but you can’t prevent them.”

The suspect has been identified as a man in his 20s who was a current or former employee, WABC-TV reported. There’s no word on his motive.

Authorities believe the man killed two before turning the gun on himself, according to WABC.

Several employees were inside the store, which was preparing to open at 6 a.m. Two windows near the entrance to the Pathmark were shot out.

Numerous employees were taken across the street to a T.G.I. Friday’s and many are being treated for trauma at waiting ambulances.

The scene is now under control, according to WABC, and there are emergency responders in the plaza parking lot who have been standing in front of the store for the past hour.

Expect the wailing over guns laws to continue, maybe even crescendo, as a result of this shooting.  But take note that no one in this instance could have legally defended himself.  New Jersey is a “may issue” state.  State Senator Jeff Van Drew has tried to change that, apparently without success.

Current state law only gives carry permits to those who demonstrate a “justifiable need” to their local police chief and then a Superior Court judge — a nearly impossible hurdle, Van Drew says.

“You have to fear for your life, that you’re going to be killed, in essence,” said Van Drew. “It’s virtually never done.”

Van Drew owns two handguns — but he can’t carry them around.

New Jersey residents may purchase handguns through a permit process that involves being fingerprinted by local police and undergoing a background check. A permit must be obtained for each handgun purchased, and the buyer must go through a background check each time he or she wants to buy another pistol.

The state also has strict regulations guiding how handgun owners may transport their pistols outside their homes, requiring the pistol to be placed, unloaded, in a fastened case and carried in the trunk of a vehicle. If the vehicle has no trunk or separate compartment, the unloaded handgun must be kept in a locked box out of reach of passengers.

Those rules also apply to the handgun owners who hold special “carry permits” unless otherwise specified in the permit that allows them to have their handgun on their person. Each “carry permit” is tailored to the person holding it, setting the specific hours in a day, days in a week and the exact locations and circumstances in which a handgun owner may carry his or her gun.

Also apparently, bills to make New Jersey a shall-issue state have come up before, and they never go anywhere.  Note to the progressives.  New Jersey has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the nation.  More laws wouldn’t have stopped this crime.  Someone engaged in concealed carry, on the other hand, might have had a decent chance.

No One Needs ARs For Self Defense Or Hunting?

BY Herschel Smith
11 years, 9 months ago

There has been a recent proliferation of commentaries advocating the notion that no one needs an AR for self defense or hunting.  They are good for nothing except killing and maiming innocent human lives, and should be banned.  Some even go so far as to claim that we have no constitutional right to own an AR, which elicited my response in Do We Have A Constitutional Right To Own An AR?  While I do not believe that the government has a moral right to dictate my belongings, and we do in fact have a constitutional right to own weapons of all sorts, it’s always good to retrieve the conversation from the theoretical and ensconce it squarely in the practical.  A recent incident in South Carolina does exactly that for us.

The owner of the Guns and Ammo Gunsmith store in North Augusta, S.C. thought he was going to die tragically. Three men had driven a van into his store, executing what they hoped would be a quick “smash-and-grab” robbery.

Instead, they met owner Stephen Bayezes, who opened fire on the three intruders after the commotion set off an alarm, hitting each one at least once. He says he is not proud of what he was forced to do, but added sometimes “you’ve got to.” The incident occurred on Aug. 9, but the owner says a set of tire marks on the store’s floor and an unfinished wall are daily reminders of the night that he almost lost his life.

“It’s a haunting thought. It literally is a haunting thought when you see the tire tracks, you hear the tires,” Bayezes told WRDW-TV. “Everybody assures you that you just did what you had to do to protect your family. They say it’ll heal over time, but when does time go away? It’s something that nobody ever wants to do.”

But he says he had no choice after he heard one of the robbers shout, “Shoot the mother f**ker!,” followed by the sound of a gun cocking. “I mean, they would’ve shot me. In my mind, with no reservation. If that firearm had been loaded, I might’ve been a statistic.”

With his fight-or-flight reflexes in full gear, Bayezes started shooting, striking all three men, killing one while the surviving two escaped.

So, what happened to the two suspects? WRDW explains:

The Aiken County Sheriff’s Office says Eddie Stewart and Franklin Robinson will be charged with burglary 1st, grand larceny and possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime. Both suspects are still in the hospital and will be taken into custody once they are released.

The Aiken County coroner says the third suspect, 20-year-old K’Raven Goodwin of Eastover, S.C., died from multiple gunshot wounds on Thursday morning.

The whole altercation took but one minute, he said. The burglars escaped with roughly 50 guns that night, however all of them have been returned safely.

The scene below shows the carnage sustained by the business.

The report says that this is the same type of weapon Bayezes used to defend himself and his wife.

This report doesn’t clearly state the details of Bayezes’s reaction, but the Aiken Standard does.

A North Augusta gun store owner used a semi-automatic weapon when he opened fire on three men who broke into his business early Thursday, killing one and sending two others to the hospital with gunshot wounds, officials said.

The break-in occurred around 4 a.m. at the Guns and Ammo Gunsmith, located on Edgefield Road in North Augusta, said Aiken County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Jason Feemster, a spokesman for the agency.

Stephen Bayazes Jr., 57, who lives in an attached apartment in the rear of the business with his wife, said he awoke to a loud bang and the silent store alarm going off.

Police said he got out of bed, grabbed his AR-15 weapon and found three men inside the store.

The men crashed a vehicle into the business and were smashing display cases and taking guns when he said he heard one of the men shout, “kill that (expletive deleted ).”

He told investigators he emptied a .223-caliber 30-round magazine and then retreated to his room to reload.

When he returned, he said he saw the vehicle pulling out from the business.

He used one of those evil “high capacity magazines” to defend his home, one of those features on so-called assault weapons that no living man is supposed to need.  He emptied his magazine.  I would have too.

But on to hunting.  Discovery Channel viewers may have taken note of a new series called Yukon Men.  It’s an interesting show on the hardships of living in the Yukon, but more to the point, take note of what happens in this video.

The young man uses an AR to take down the Caribou, and it’s a good size animal.  I also know someone who has taken down a large deer with the same caliber round (5.56 mm, or .223, and my friend was using “pointed soft point” ammunition for the deer).  The young man smartly remarks that the caliber he is using is good because it doesn’t destroy the meat.  This is meat he needs to eat in order to live.

It’s preposterous to assert that a high capacity magazine isn’t useful for self defense.  Clearly it is, and just as clearly, use of an AR (or similar modern sporting rifle) is useful and in common use for hunting.

“Will The U.S. Attack Iran?” Having The Wrong Conversation

BY Glen Tschirgi
11 years, 9 months ago

Last week, Lee Smith published an article in Tablet that gave three, main reasons why the United States is not going to attack Iran now nor will it attack Iran under a President Romney, notwithstanding all the talk to the contrary.

This article got quite a bit of play in the Statist Media because, it was argued, the article seemingly showed that Mitt Romney is carrying on a charade of getting tough on Iran and that any criticisms of President Obama’s current Iran policy are hollow or hypocritical.

Lee Smith advances three, main arguments for why no Republican president would openly attack Iran:  1) Domestic politics;  2) History of Iran-U.S. relations, and;  3) the disguised reliance upon nuclear deterrence.

The article makes perfect sense at a certain level.   On domestic politics, Smith is correct, but for the wrong reasons.   While Smith points to the desire to avoid destabilizing economic effects of any attack, the real bar to Republican action is entirely political.   The Democrats established a clear precedent with George W. Bush that any military action abroad, even if a broad authorization is obtained from Congress in advance, will be subjected to the worst partisan attacks and scurrilous accusations.   Democrats will mobilize every resource to demonize a Republican president who dares to use force against America’s enemies.   Use of force is an exclusive, Democrat prerogative.

On the history of dealings with Iran, Smith also scores points:

No American president has ever drawn red lines for Tehran and enforced them by showing that transgressions are swiftly and severely punished.

It’s true that it was a Democrat, Jimmy Carter, who sat by idly when Ayatollah Khomeini and the founders of the Islamic Republic stormed the U.S. embassy and held Americans hostage for 444 days. But GOP hero Ronald Reagan provided the Iranians with arms—after the Islamic Republic’s Lebanese asset, Hezbollah, killed 241 U.S. Marines in the 1983 bombing of their barracks at the Beirut airport. When the FBI said Tehran was responsible for the 1996 bombing of Khobar Towers, Bill Clinton failed to respond or even name Iran, lest it derail the “dialogue of civilizations” promised by the newly elected reform-minded president Muhammad Khatami. And the last Republican in the White House was no more proactive in countering Iran’s actual attacks on Americans: The more than 100,000 American servicemen and -women that Bush had dispatched to Iraq were targeted by the IRGC and their local allies, a fact that U.S. officials tended to obscure and did little to change when they did acknowledge it.

As to a hidden reliance on nuclear deterrence, Smith is also likely correct:

If you can kill Americans without any consequences and the Americans will in fact collaborate in covering up your malfeasance, you can certainly build a nuclear weapons facility without too much concern that the Americans are really keeping “all options on the table”; the White House is not and almost surely never will—no matter who’s calling the shots. Short of an American city suffering thousands of casualties in a nuclear attack that the Iranians boast of publicly, it is difficult to know what would compel a U.S. president to take military action against Iran.

Maybe U.S. policymakers just believe, in spite of what they say publicly, that Iran really isn’t that big a deal. Remember that even today, a number of American officials, civilian and military, cut their teeth on Cold War strategy, an era when the United States faced off against a real superpower. Washington and Moscow fought proxy wars against each other on four continents with the fear of an eventual nuclear exchange leading to mutually assured destruction looming in the background. Perhaps, if seen in this context, for American policymakers Iran just doesn’t rise to a genuine threat level.

The problem with Smith’s analysis (and many others who have been endlessly debating the pros and cons of attacking Iran to stop its nuclear weapons development) is that it fundamentally is the wrong conversation.

The focus of the debate should not be about stopping a totalitarian, Islamist regime devoted to martyrdom from getting nuclear weapons.   The focus should be on removing the Regime itself.  The Iranian people have lived long enough under the hand of an oppressive theocracy to know that the next government must be anything but that.  The Green Movement that began with the phony elections of 2009 explicitly called for a true, secular, democratic government.  The Regime immediately recognized the counter-revolutionary nature of the Greens and put it down with absolute brutality.  The Regime knows that the people of Iran want normalized relations with the U.S. and the West in general.  Any change in government is going to be a sharp repudiation of the current leadership and the mullahs.

Fortunately for the U.S. and the West, the Regime is clinging on to power on a cliff’s edge of explosive public unrest and simmering revolution.   All that is needed to effect the removal of the Regime is a little… more… time.

This plays directly into the debate over Israel’s decision whether to attack Iran.

The current debate suffers from the same mistake.   Critics endlessly point out that even if Israel could muster the nerve and assets to attack Iranian facilities any such attack would “only” delay the Iranian nuclear program, not end it.   If any attack could end Iran’s nuclear program that would certainly be preferable.   But that is, of course, highly unlikely.   Delaying the program, however, is the very point.   Delaying the program is more than a sufficient goal because it gives more time to change the leadership of Iran.

Obama has been doing everything in its power to subvert and forestall an attack by Israel against Iran’s nuclear facilities.   This is directly contrary to U.S. interests in bringing down the Iranian Regime.  An attack by Israel, even if incomplete, would undeniably set back the Iranian nuclear program by some years according to most estimates.   This additional time could be the crucial difference in allowing the U.S. to work, covertly, toward bringing down the Regime.

In the end, the U.S. must realize that it is not the possession of nuclear weapons in and of itself that should be feared.   It is the government that possesses such weapons.   Simply seeking to keep nuclear technology out of the hands of totalitarian regimes is, ultimately futile.  As North Korea demonstrated, with enough determination and sacrifice, even a poverty-stricken country can get nuclear weapons.  The goal must always be to eliminate any regime that evidences any intention to go nuclear.   It is a red line that cannot be crossed.

How and when we go about doing that is the conversation we should be having.

Matt Bissonnette Discusses Killing Bin Laden

BY Herschel Smith
11 years, 9 months ago

From, where the author points out ten things we allegedly need to know, this is extracted.

The Navy SEAL Team 6 member who used the pseudonym Mark Owen to write No Easy Day, the tell-all book about the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, has been outed by Fox News. His name is Matt Bissonnette, age 36. What do we know about him?

According to White House and CIA officials, the military didn’t know about this book until the story was leaked online. When ex or current military personnel release a book about their military service, standard protocol is to give a copy to the Pentagon before the book is released publicly. This enables officials to comb through it and make sure that no confidential information gets leaked to the public. Bissonnette didn’t do this and is now taking heat for it. Dutton publishing house (a subsidiary of Penguin) claims that it did go through the book and deemed none of the information confidential. White House reps were quick to respond that Dutton’s vetting was not sufficient. If confidential info gets released in this book Bissonnette could face major jail time.

Word on the street is that Bissonnette is releasing the book in order to fight President Obama accidently (sic) taking credit for Bin Laden’s death. Bissonette was quoted saying “It’s time to set the record straight about the most important mission in US Military History.”

The SEALs are not happy with Bissonnette and his book. Fox News quoted one SEAL saying “How do we tell our guys to stay quiet when this guy won’t?” Other accounts have members of the SEALs going as far as calling him a “traitor.”

The only real description I can use to describe Seal Team 6 is “Scary Awesome.” SEAL Team 6’s official name is “ The United States Naval Special Warfare Development Group” (DEVGRU for short). DEVGRU is “awesome” because it is one of four counter terrorism/special mission units in the military and is so covert that most of the details and techniques of Seal Team 6 are not even commented on by the White House or DOD. Seal Team 6 is “scary” because it has the ability to work outside of both U.S. and international law. Bissonnette achieved the rank of chief in this elite group. He retired last summer.

Analysis & Commentary

Make sure to read the entire report, and there are others available as well.  In no certain order, I offer up the following observations.

I am not impressed with the whole OPSEC / FOUO classification.  It is a knee jerk, reflexive reaction to literally everything that the military produces, from mission details to PowerPoint presentations.  Oftentimes (or more correctly, most often) no thought whatsoever is given to the classification of some piece of knowledge, signals information or report.  The information released by Bradley Manning is a prime example, and except for the release of information with names of informants (which ultimately led to their deaths), I remarked at the time that the Manning information was mostly boring and worthless, and not useful for someone who had followed the details of the campaign for years like I had.  I basically learned nothing from it.

The instance surrounding the release of the presentation on Taliban tactics, techniques and procedures is a more detailed example of the reflexive tendency to classify everything.  In this case the presentation was classified FOUO, obtained my Michael Yon and posted to his site with some observations, linked by Glenn Reynolds, and then linked and discussed by me.  The officer who authored this presentation at one point attempted to force me to take the presentation down, but I refused, and for the better.

The Taliban already know of their own procedures.  The enemy doesn’t learn of their procedures by reading my web site, but our own Marines might be better equipped and prepared by doing so.  No matter, said this officer.  It was classified as FOUO and thus it should ever remain whether it had been released on another web site or not.  I again refused, still do so, and am convinced that some Marine somewhere (many Marines read this web site) benefited from knowing information that they would have never seen if it had not been made available by Michael and me.

One final example would be the information I describe about satellite patrols.  The things I learned from my son about them are based on what they did in Fallujah in 2007.  Al Qaeda doesn’t need to read this web site to learn about these things.  They observed them as they are happening, and they can no more (while it is happening) do anything about the fact that they don’t know where the next fire team will show up than if they read this web site.

Operations by Special Forces is similar in my opinion.  They are so secretive that names, dates, locations, TTPs, equipment, orders, logistics, etc., etc., are all off limits for conversation or even training items for the other forces.  Oftentimes I am convinced that it doesn’t necessarily have to be this way, or another way to put it is that the secretive nature of their operations adds to their mystique but not the success of the mission.

So what TTPs were used is not important regarding secrecy.  What might indeed be of great importance is the fact that helicopter technology apparently fell into Pakistani hands, and then ultimately into Chinese hands.  The greatest failure of the mission for UBL was the fact that inadequate barriers were in place to prevent this from happening.  Whether the mission included Matt Bissonnette, how long they trained, what weapons they brought, where they trained, what happened to UBL’s body, timing of mission details, names of other team members, and so on and so forth, aren’t critical to past or future missions.

Knowing when a ship is going to be in a strait or knowing when a patrol is going to pass by is OPSEC, and it is traitorous to divulge it.  Knowing that Matt Bissonnette was on the raid to kill UBL is not, and talk of traitorous actions on Matt’s part is juvenile.  Knowing the materials in the design of the helicopter they used that night is OPSEC; knowing that someone killed UBL with a double-tap to the head is not.  Some of my military readers will disagree.  So be it.  You won’t change my mind.

Next, to Matt’s claim that this was “the most important mission in US Military History.”  Oh my.  Oh goodness. Of all of the Marine Recon missions in the South Pacific, of all of the Ranger missions in Europe in World War II, of all of the recon missions during the War of Independence, this one was the most important.

Um, I don’t think so.  Not by a long shot.  I have made it abundantly clear that I am no advocate of the high value target campaign.  While being one pseudo-useful tactic, it doesn’t even nearly rise to the level of a being a functional strategy, which is what we have tried to do in Afghanistan.

It would have had far greater strategic value to have killed the Haqqanis, Hassan Nasrallah or especially General Suleimani than bin Laden.  There is no question that a generation of Americans had a sense of accomplishment when bin Laden was killed.  But making this out to be something that it isn’t is no better than the administration being offended at the “OPSEC” divulged in the book.

No one questions that the SEALs are the best on earth at what they do.  No one should question the bravery of those who conducted the mission.  I just think we should keep this all in proper perspective.  And I would be happy to review the book – for a free, signed copy.

NYPD Injures People In Empire State Building Shooting?

BY Herschel Smith
11 years, 9 months ago

In Guns: The Great White Male Right-Wing Freak-Out, we heard Katha Pollitt ridiculing the very notion that a concealed handgun carrier might just have saved lives in the recent Aurora, Colorado shooting.  “All those moviegoers in Aurora needed to make their misery complete was to have a bunch of armed freelancers shooting off their weapons in a dark theater,” she dryly commented.

I wondered if she might be mistakenly referring to the incident where the New York Police Department fired off 84 rounds at a single shooter, missing with 70.  Now we learn from none other than Mayor Nazi himself that the NYPD might have again neglected to maintain situational awareness of their backstop.

Bloomberg says the suspect had been fired from his job at the address about a year ago.

He says some of the people injured in the melee may have been accidentally shot by police officers firing at the gunman.

I’m just wondering if any white, freaked-out, right-wing males might have been able to help in this situation if they had been carrying?


“These officers … had absolutely no choice,” Kelly said. “This individual took a gun out very close to them and perhaps fired at them.”

Kelly said authorities believe police may be responsible for some of the injuries because of the limited capacity of the gunman’s weapon.

Erica Solar doesn’t know who shot her in the back of the knee while she walked to get coffee on her way to work, said her brother, Louis Lleras.

“She just heard shots and she fell to the ground a couple of steps forward and noticed that she was shot,” Lleras said.

Ercolino’s profile on the business networking site Linkedin identified him as a vice president of sales at Hazan Import Corp. It said he was a graduate of the State University of New York at Oneonta

A man who answered the phone at Ercolino’s home in Warwick, northwest of Manhattan, said he was too distraught to talk.

“He was a good son, that’s all I can say, said the man, who didn’t give his name

The two officers fired a total of 14 rounds at Johnson, Kelly said. Mayor Michael Bloomberg said some of the nine wounded may have been shot by police in the mayhem. Johnson’s semi-automatic weapon was equipped to fire at least eight rounds; at least one round was left in the clip, police said. Another loaded magazine was in his briefcase.

You mean that he didn’t need a high capacity clip, er … magazine to cause all that carnage?  You mean that the NYPD officers were “very close” to the shooter and still shot innocents?

On another front, Katrina Trinko says:

I’ve been past the Empire State Building many, many times now; it’s one of the most crowded areas in Manhattan. There’s always tourists to see the building itself, and there’s plenty of non-tourists, too, going about their daily business. Unbelievable that it would be a scene of violence like this.

That’s the problem with Mayor Nazi and his gun laws, and all of those who acquiesce to them.  It’s “unbelievable” that someone would be shot there.  It needs to become very believable, right now, especially if it is a crowded area.  I was attending worship services a few weeks ago and took note of the very large, seated crowd.  What a horrible target  for a crazed shooter!  That’s why I was armed while sitting in the service, and thus, the service was safer for everyone in attendance.


Based on other sources, it appears that the sequence of events is basically as follows: (a) gunman had an eight round magazine, (b) fired two (or possibly three) shots at former supervisor (or co-worker, it isn’t clear), holstered his weapon and walked away, (c) someone witnessed these events and security personnel followed him, (d) he appeared to unholster his weapon and aim it at the police officers, (e) NYPD officers fired approximately 14 rounds in his direction, killing him and shooting nine bystanders in the process.  In the sequence of events it is apparent at the moment that the perpetrator didn’t fire a single round at the police.

Now.  Expect the following things to happen in the MSM.  First, they will walk back the idea that a gunman shot eleven people.  They will not clealy state that the NYPD shot nine of them.  They will issue new calls for a ban on high capacity magazines even though the gunman didn’t have one.  Finally, they will call for even more stringent controls on the purchase of firearms by law abiding citizens, including increased waiting times, even though the gunman waited approximately one year from the date of the offending action to perpetrate the crime.

Watch it and see.

UPDATE #3: Thanks to Dan Riehl for the attention!

Unmasked: New Book Shows The Real Obama

BY Glen Tschirgi
11 years, 9 months ago

In a short review of a soon-to-be-released e-book by Politico on the 2012 Obama Campaign, we find out that President Obama is pretty much the jerk we knew he was all along:

The e-book, produced as part of a two-month reporting project that included interviews with two dozen current and former members of Obama’s team, illuminates how the mood and character of the 2012 reelection effort is flowing from the top — with Obama’s own personality and values shaping his campaign just as powerfully as he did four years ago.

This has produced a campaign being animated by one thing above all. It is not exclusively about hope and change anymore, words that seem like distant echoes even to Obama’s original loyalists — and to the president himself. It is not the solidarity of a hard-fought cause, often absent in this mostly joyless campaign. It is Obama’s own burning competitiveness, with his remorseless focus on beating Mitt Romney — an opponent he genuinely views with contempt and fears will be unfit to run the country.

Obama is sometimes portrayed as a reluctant warrior, sorry to see 2012 marked by so much partisan warfare but forced by circumstance to go along. But this perception is by most evidence untrue. In the interviews with current and former Obama aides, not one said he expressed any reservations about the negativity. He views it as a necessary part of campaigning, as a natural — if unpleasant — rotation of the cyclical political wheel.

[Emphasis added]

In one reported incident, Obama spotted a person in a hotel lobby whom he knew was close to Senator Marco Rubio and had the following exchange:

“Is your boy going to go for [vice president]?” the president asked her. Maybe, she replied.

“Well,” he said, chuckling, according to a person who witnessed the encounter. “Tell your boy to watch it. He might get his ass kicked.”

This pretty well epitomizes Barack Hussein Obama.   He is nothing more than a cheap, trash-talking, Chicago thug politician, perfectly comfortable with the politics of personal destruction and not reluctant to flaunt it.   The fact that the Statist Media has aided and abetted this fraud on the public is nearly criminal.

Remember this the next time that you hear someone say that they like the President personally— “He’s a nice guy, he just has bad policies…”   No, he is not a nice guy.   He pretends to be one in order to manipulate gullible voters and sentimental, guilt-stricken women for political effect, but the mask if finally slipping and we will see in this campaign just how vicious and repulsive he can be.

Trumped-Up Terrorism Charges For Toy Rifle In West Virginia

BY Herschel Smith
11 years, 9 months ago

Some things are so far beyond belief that you couldn’t make them up even if you tried.  From West Virginia:

MARTINSBURG – A man wearing a ballistic vest and military camouflage, armed with a training rifle, two knives and several unloaded magazines, was arrested Monday morning after he was seen running in the area of two Martinsburg schools.

William Everett Alemar, 23, of South Raleigh Street, Martinsburg, was charged with committing a terrorist act and wearing body armor while committing a felony offense following the incident, which occurred on the first day of school for Berkeley County students. As of Monday, he was being held at Eastern Regional Jail on a $50,000 cash-only bond.

Alemar, who police said was a member of the military, later told police he was out running and jogging with his gear on, police said. His current military status is under police investigation.

No need to continue with the investigation.  Mr. Alemar is currently in Virginia National Guard’s Company B, 3rd Battalion, 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team in Woodstock, Va., according to West Virginia National Guard spokesman Lt. Col. David Lester.  Continuing with the original report:

At about 7:17 a.m., the Martinsburg Police Department received several calls in regard to an individual running and carrying a rifle near the area of Bulldog Boulevard and Raleigh Street in Martinsburg, which is located near Martinsburg High School and South Middle School.

“One of our primary concerns was that he was sighted in the general proximity or area of the high school on Bulldog Boulevard and we also believe that’s what generated a lot of calls,” Lt. G.B. Swartwood said.

Officers responded to the scene and located Alemar near the intersection of Silver Lane and Raleigh Street. When Patrolman Michael Jones, Patrolman C.M. Richmond and Patrolman First Class Erik Herb encountered the individual, he was wearing full military desert camouflage and a ballistic vest. He also appeared to be armed with an assault rifle across his chest, which police subsequently determined was an AR-15 training rifle.

Now here’s the admirable part where the police demonstrate good muzzle and trigger discipline.

All three officers engaged Alemar at gunpoint and ordered him to his knees to be taken into custody.

“The subject was then ordered to lie prone on the ground and the officers secured his weapon, an AR-15(M-4) training rifle. The suspect also had two knives and several unloaded magazines, (and) his ballistic vest also contained ceramic panels to make it more bullet resistant,” a police news release said.

Swartwood said the training rifle Alemar was found with fires small pellet projectiles and not bullets, similar to an airsoft rifle. He said the rifle is used for training purposes, but looks exactly like a real AR-15.

“It’s heavy and it looks completely just like an AR-15 other than that red tip on it,” Swartwood said.

Alemar was handcuffed and brought to the Martinsburg Police Department. All of his accoutrements and camouflage were photographed upon his person and seized as potential evidence.

Uh huh.  Evidence.  Here is the picture.

Here is the result.

After consulting with the Berkeley County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, Alemar was charged with “committing a terroristic act under 61-6-24 subsection (b) and subsection (d) of the West Virginia State Code,” police said.

“With him being in that proximity, in that area of the school, we believed that he was causing a significant threat with his actions and his gestures by his own choosing,” Swartwood said.

He had an Airsoft gun.  It wasn’t a real weapon.  He had some empty magazines, and for some added weight he wore his body armor including his SAPI plates, like most Marines and Soldiers train.  Now he is facing terrorism charges.

I sometimes carry concealed and sometimes openly.  My home state is a traditional open carry state and has no stop and identify statute.  I am waiting on the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police to stop and question me so that I can use it as an opportunity to educate them on the law.  Thus far I have only gotten them interested enough in me to wave and smile.  I guess they are well-trained, and I guess Berkeley County isn’t as civilized as Mecklenburg County.

But we wouldn’t want people to get away with thinking that all of that tactical gear is acceptable, especially those evil ARs (er, … toy guns).  After all, they look scary, have handles and stuff, shoot bullets that aren’t any good for anything except killing cops, fire bullets and grenades fully automatic machine gun style with ammunition that splits into a thousand pieces and homes in on its target with embedded television sensors, and have that shoulder thing that goes up.

I hope Alemar’s attorney bankrupts Berkeley county with a lawsuit.  I suppose if the police and prosecutors aren’t already humiliated by the circumstances, there isn’t much we can do about that.

UPDATE #1: A followup article outlines the steps that the prosecutor is taking against Alemar.  The idiot prosecutor is actually going to go through with this, making a joke of the very statutes under which real, honest-to-God terrorism would be prosecuted.  His attorney gives us the following update from the article.

“I mean he was jogging, so the last time I checked, there’s no jogging statute near schools, but I think everyone has to be cautious in this day and age. We understand the police response was appropriate, but the question is, was there a crime and, if so, is there an explanation for his state of mind? He doesn’t want to make any statements right now, but the family is helping us, along with him, to get the military records we need to make the proper assessment to confirm his military service and to confirm his deployment,” Mills said.

If convicted of the terrorism charge, Alemar faces one to three years in prison and a $500 to $25,000 fine. He faces two to 10 years in prison if convicted of wearing body armor while committing a felony offense.

He is too nice.  Let me state very explicitly that the response of the police was not appropriate.  Pointing their weapons at a man who was not in violation of any law is thuggish, and makes them appear to be uncivilized, country-boy hicks.  I sent a note to the police department ridiculing the lack of muzzle discipline of their officers, but am shocked that I still haven’t received a response.  Shocked.

As for the PTSD defense, this is ridiculous.  How about this as a defense: He didn’t break any laws.

UPDATE #2: Additional discussion at reddit/r/guns concerning charges of intoxication that the police department intends to trot out.  To me this is evidence that they have no case.

The Self Inflicted Tragedy Of The Afghanistan Strategy

BY Herschel Smith
11 years, 9 months ago

Mark Steyn observes:

The pitiful self-inflicted tragedy of the west’s “strategy” in Afghanistan is summed up in this opening sentence:

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A newly recruited Afghan village policeman opened fire on his American allies on Friday, killing two US service members minutes after they handed him his official weapon in an inauguration ceremony.

There’s nothing clever or sophisticated about this attack. You don’t have to plot, or disguise yourself, or break into a secure facility. They come to you, to your village. They even give you money. And then they give you the gun. And then you shoot them.

Do they cover that in Pentagon-approved must-read Three Cups Of Tea? Afghanistan is just another in the long roll-call of America’s un-won wars these past six decades – except that it’s taken longer to lose than the others, and in their barbarity the locals demonstrate an almost gleeful contempt for a lavishly endowed enemy with everything except the one thing it needs: strategic purpose. This ought to be a national scandal …

To some degree we’ve covered this in Green On Blue Bloodbath In Afghanistan.  At least now they have changed their disposition towards the ANA and ANP.

The uptick in attacks by Afghan security forces against coalition troops has hit home, with all troops at NATO headquarters and all bases across Afghanistan now ordered to carry loaded weapons around the clock, CNN learned Friday.

Gen. John Allen, the NATO commander in Afghanistan, ordered the move, according to a U.S. official with direct knowledge of the orders. The order, made in recent days, was divulged amid two more so-called green-on-blue or insider attacks Friday.

It’s ridiculous that we weren’t already behaving this way.  This is part of the impetus behind me asking why all Soldiers and Marines don’t already carry a sidearm. In Iraq when the Marines, 2/6 Golf Company, was in Fallujah (2007), they wouldn’t even sleep around ISF unless they had concertina wire and armed, on duty Marines between them and ISF soldiers.

As for the tragedy of the Afghanistan strategy, it isn’t that there wasn’t one.  It’s that the flag and staff officers from the Pentagon to Afghanistan came under the spell of the doctrines of population-centric counterinsurgency and nation-building.  For it, as Steyn observes, “We came, we saw, we left no trace. America’s longest war will leave nothing behind.”  Not even killing enough of the enemy.  We will be back again, hopefully as grown ups next time.

The Need For Ban On Assault Hammers

BY Herschel Smith
11 years, 9 months ago

In Concerning Guns, Hammers and Violence, I discussed no less than ten instances of deaths, maiming and injury with hammers on men, women, children and animals.  Continuing with this theme, we should note that David Gotshall, a homeless veteran, was beaten and lost an eye to hammer-inflicted injuries.  Kansas is the scene of another crime with a hammer.

Sgt. Scott Brunow said police were called to Wesley Medical Center a little before 9 p.m. Friday where the 44-year-old man, who has Down syndrome, was being treated for a number of injuries, including broken fingers and a hematoma to his head.  Brunow said the victim had been beaten with several tools, including a hammer, pliers and a screwdriver.

In Lake Worth, Florida, a woman was recently beaten with a hammer by her boyfriend because she recommended that he go to the polls and vote.  At the end of July there was a hammer attack in Manhattan Park.

A Spanish tourist was bashed in the head with a hammer by a well-dressed Brooklyn man inside Manhattan’s City Hall Park Monday afternoon, police sources said.

Hugo Alejandre, 31, who is from Barcelona, was sitting on a bench in the downtown park near Murray Street and Broadway when he was targeted him in an unprovoked attack shortly after 3 p.m., the sources said.

Clad in a suit, John Yoos, 43, of Crown Heights, struck Alejandre with the claw part of the hammer on the left side of his head, just above his eye, police said. The blow fractured his skull.

Alejandre also suffered defensive wounds to his arms and hands, police said. He was taken to Bellevue Hospital Center and later listed in stable condition, officials said.

Witnesses to the horrifying assault held Yoos until police officers arrived to place him under arrest, cops said.

Police recovered the hammer and charged Yoos with first-degree assault, criminal possession of a weapon and reckless endangerment, authorities said.

A hammer surely is a weapon, and a terrifying one at that.  In Texas a 13 year old boy used a hammer to beat his mother.  Sure, a hammer has been used to stop a rapist recently, too.  But the fact that a hammer can be used for good is no excuse to ignore the horrible violence that can be perpetrated with such a horrible weapon.

I have previously called for increased controls on hammers.  “Given the easy availability of hammers – I can go to Home Depot, Lowes, or even Walmart and purchase a hammer with no background check whatsoever – I am calling for the increased regulation of carpentry tools.  Given the outrage of hammers and the fact that anyone can purchase them just about anywhere, what reasonable person could oppose such a thing?”

If you cannot see your way clear to support this effort for the violence perpetrated against adults, then do it for the children.  Think of the children.  I am also calling for even more stringent controls on assault hammers, or those hammers that have certain features that make them more amenable to use against humans (such as no-slip rubber grips, ripping claws, extra heavy heads, etc.).

Do you want to see more people die at the hands of assault hammers?

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