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]

York County Cop Shoots Seventy Year Old Man For Picking Up Walking Stick

BY Herschel Smith
10 years, 1 month ago

First of all, watch this video, and make sure to watch all of it, listening to the exchange between LEOs near the end.  Then I’ll make several observations.

First of all, take note of the sentence crafted by the LEO who showed up after the incident: “You done what you had to do.”  This is a sad commentary on the intelligence and educational level of these LEOs.  This is a serious rather than a rhetorical question.  Would you ever put these words together in a sentence in this order?  “You done what you had to do.”  If so, why?  Why would a person choose to do something like that?

Second, take note that without even having seen the evidence and without knowing anything at all about the situation, the blue wall is closing in.  It happens immediately.  “You done what you had to do.”  There is nothing more important than going home safely at the end of their shift.

This brings me to my third and most important point.  When Daniel was in Iraq, he made a practice each morning of waking up and preparing himself to perish.  He had to be okay with it or he couldn’t function.  Thus, he was able to restrain himself with ROE, and that restraint came in the face of plenty of AK-47s in the population, as I’ve pointed out before.

Thus, whatever you think about the campaign in Iraq, what he did (i.e., restraint in the face of danger) can be called service.  LEOs want what they do to be considered service as well, but in most cases it’s not.  As it stands, they are no more than uniformed goons who run around frightened of everything that moves.  The last thing I would have thought in this situation is “an old man is reaching for a long gun to shoot me.”

Finally, take note of the official (so far) reaction to this shooting.

The York County Sheriff’s Office released this statement to the media on Wednesday following Tuesday’s officer-involved shooting in Clover.

After an initial review of the car video from the incident, we can report that on February 25, 2014, at approximately 7:30 p.m., York County Sheriff’s Deputy Terrance Knox made a traffic stop on a vehicle with an expired license plate at Highway 321 and Motseller Street north of the town of Clover.

The driver of the vehicle, Bobby Dean Canipe, 70, of Lincolnton, North Carolina, exited his vehicle and reached in his truck bed, raised what Deputy Knox perceived to be a long barrel weapon. Deputy Knox was forced to make a split second, life or death decision and fired his weapon several times striking Canipe once. Canipe had grabbed a walking cane from the bed of his truck. Deputy Knox rendered aid to Mr. Canipe until EMS arrived.

At Sheriff’s Bryant’s request, The State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) is investigating the incident and will report their findings to the 16th Circuit Solicitor.

The situation is very unfortunate. It does appear, at this time, that Deputy Knox’s actions were an appropriate response to what he reasonably believed to be an imminent threat to his life …

Goons protecting goons.  Did you expect any different?  The blue wall closes in, and a 70 year old man was shot for picking up a walking stick.

Supreme Court Won’t Block Ban On High Capacity Magazines

BY Herschel Smith
10 years, 1 month ago


The U.S. Supreme Court refused Wednesday to halt Sunnyvale’s enforcement of a voter-approved ban on high-capacity gun magazines. The order signaled that San Francisco will also be allowed to enforce a virtually identical ordinance during court challenges.

Sunnyvale’s measure, approved by 66 percent of its voters in November, prohibits possession of magazines carrying more than 10 cartridges.

A group of gun owners sued to overturn the Sunnyvale ordinance and asked a federal judge to block its enforcement, arguing that tens of millions of Americans legally own guns with high-capacity magazines and may sometimes need them to repel criminal attacks.

But U.S. District Judge Ronald Whyte of San Jose rejected the request March 5, the day before the ordinance took effect, saying the ban would have little impact on the constitutional right to bear arms in self-defense.

A federal appeals court refused to intervene, and on Wednesday, Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, who handles emergency appeals from California and eight other Western states, denied a stay without comment.

More often than not, when the SCOTUS refuses to hear a case, they know full well how it will turn out and conclude that the outcome wouldn’t be any different than the way it is before review.

Occasionally I like the decisions made at the appeals court level.  But more often than not I don’t.  But one thing I do not do is rely on the federal court system to protect my rights.

I am a second amendment and gun rights writer, but I only loosely call myself that.  Readers know that I don’t believe that I have a right to own firearms because the constitution says so.  I also don’t believe in so-called “natural law” or “natural rights.”

Ever since my seminary training in apologetics and philosophy, having seen John Locke thoroughly dissembled with logic, I don’t reference his views for anything.  No respectable philosopher today does.  Even among the legal community, John Whitehead is an exception.  In order for something to be “natural,” it has to be binding upon all men and capable of epistemic certainty.  To me, the concept of a natural right to own guns is no better than the notion of the new head of a pride killing the young lions so that the lionesses will come into estrus again – or the lioness trying to defend her young one.  What’s natural to one won’t be natural to another.

So why do I have a right to own guns, or high capacity magazines?  Because God says so.  That settles it for me, whether the constitution recognizes it or not, whether a judge certifies it or not.  You may not have my world view, and I’m okay with that.  But every man must come to his own conclusions and ascertain the ultimate foundation for what he does and what he believes.

You live on the Serengeti desert in a Machiavellian world of eat or be eaten, with no concept of right and wrong, or you know whereof you act, and you know why what you do and what you believe is morally righteous.  And If you were relying on a federal judge to warranty your rights, you’ve been disavowed of that mistaken belief as we speak.  Is that clear enough?

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
10 years, 1 month ago

Kurt Hofmann:

I literally asked him if a law was passed to put Jews in the Ghettos, would you? He literally said “Now you are being silly…but if its the law, I enforce it; I don’t make them.”

It’s difficult to imagine a more Machiavellian statement than that.  This is the sign of a man who’s lost his way, one who has lost any sense of morality and has replaced the concept of right and wrong with dictates by the state.  There you have it.  The framework for values of some LEOs in America today.

David Codrea:

“Ares Armor is under immediate threat of having their customers’ personal information and its legal goods being seized by the ATF …”

So it doesn’t end with just overreach by the ATF into areas where they have no business, confiscating parts that legally meet the stipulations set out by the government.  It goes to the personal information of customers.  Because, you know, the ATF has a compelling interest in knowing the personal information of people doing things legally.

And in that same vein, Mike Vandeboegh reports on the case of James Kaleda.

I seen random reports of New Jersey Firearms Purchaser Identification card applicants being advised that one or more of their answers to the ten specific questions asked on the Firearms Purchaser Identification card application were “wrong” ( also known as false). The applicants were permitted to come in and make the necessary correction with no reprisals.  Other applicants reported having their New Jersey Firearms Purchaser Identification card application denied, forcing the applicant to appeal that denial to the County Superior Court and having the denial overturned. I have found no other instance where the New Jersey State Police has detained an Individual Firearms Purchaser Identification card applicant for a clerical error.

They don’t like to be criticized.  Ever.  At all.  It’s called retribution.

Uncle sends us to this.

So it is that the days of the great gun writers are gone. There will never be another Cooper, Keith, O’Connor, Aagaard, Sitton, Skelton or Jordon. The world of communication has changed. The Internet and the plethora of gun blogs, gun magazines, gun television, gun DVDs and those who write about guns (including me) have, in a way, polluted the water.

The good thing is that now, no matter how you believe or what you think, you can find a writer who reflects your sentiments. That bad thing is that, no matter how you believe or what you think, you can find a writer that reflects your sentiments. With the modern world of outdoor communication its no longer about the message it’s more about the character the communicator plays. Good actors always seem to draw a crowd which is why no one is standing in line at my front gate.

Yea, that’s the problem.  That’s exactly the way I feel when I watch a Travis Haley instructional video.  I lament the loss of prominence of folks like Jerry Tsai, David Petzal and Jim Zumbo.

Look, I don’t need them.  There are plenty of good magazines where guns are reviewed for hunting prowess, and online forums are sometimes great, sometimes not, when it comes to gun reviews.  But I’d rather read a review of a real gun buyer than not before I spend my hard earned money.

You can find good and bad over the internet.  You just have to be able to sort it out.  Do your homework guys.  We still have great gun writers around.

Proper Pistol Grip

BY Herschel Smith
10 years, 1 month ago

See this picture of me shooting in Pickens, S.C., where the horrible Larry Martin is state senator.

2013B 108

For a longer demonstration of proper pistol grip, see this instructive video.



Guns Tags:

Home Invasion With AR-15, So Why Can’t Law Abiding Citizens Have Them?

BY Herschel Smith
10 years, 1 month ago

Southwest Florida Online:

On March 9, 2014 at approximately 22 :29 hours a home invasion robbery took place at 3306 SE 26th St., at the time of the home invasion robbery the residence was occupied by 5 people.

According to accounts of the incident from the occupants of the residence there was a knock on the door. When the door opened three males entered the residence. Two of the males that entered the residence were armed one with a Shotgun and the other with an ARl5 style weapon-

The occupants were order to lay face down on the ground by the gunmen and to remove all their personal belongings from their pockets. Several of the occupants were able to identify one of the gunmen as Timothy Deshon Williams.

The witnesses who identified Timothy have all personally known him from 8 to 14 years. According to witnesses accounts Timothy was carrying the AR 15 Style weapon. Shortly after entering the residence and ordering the occupants to lay face down Timothy shot Leon Anthony Cotton in the right: leg with the ARl5 because he would not get on the ground as instructed.

As a result of the gunshot Leon suffered a broken right femur and has required surgeries to treat and repair his leg.

He’s fortunate to get away with a broken femur.  I don’t answer the door without a firearm, especially in the unlikely event that someone knocks after dark.  These folks should have been armed.

Isn’t it ironic though.  In Connecticut and New York, the bullies in charge would want us to be left comparatively defenseless in the face of such home invasions.  So if the criminals can use them, then why not me?

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
10 years, 1 month ago

David Codrea:

In spite of that, one “A-rated” Democrat, Sen. Jon Tester of Montana, joined with confirmed anti-gunners Chuck Schumer, Dianne Feinstein, Dick Durbin and others.

This is Tester’s second vote for administration interests over those of his gun owner constituents in a little over a month.

I just renewed my NRA membership for another year because I figure it seals and ensures my right to complain to them.  David is right to complain, and I do my fair share.  But it’s really a shame, this degree to which NRA rating has fallen in stature.

I pay little to no attention to it for just the reasons David laments.  There is also the issue that politicians will make claims concerning NRA ratings that are outdated and old, when new ratings have been issued, or when no ratings have been issued at all.  I’ve discussed this with NRA folks by phone.  If the NRA wants its ratings to be taken seriously, it will begin to husband them with diligence.  Otherwise, it’s an irrelevant feature of what could otherwise be a powerful lobby for our interests.

Kurt Hofmann:

In other words, to refer to his earlier opposition as “an act” is perhaps giving him too much credit–perhaps “a lie” would be a more accurate assessment.

Hey, they’re politicians.  It’s what they do.  Sort of like pictures of  Lindsey Graham holding an AR-15 while he secretly conspires with Senator Cornyn to infringe on gun rights, right?

What do cartoons, guns and Obama have to do with each other?  No, it’s not that our president is a cartoon and is scared of guns.  Uncle tells us.  And yes, I know what you’re thinking.  What a dumb ass!  No, not Uncle.  The other guy(s).

Mike told us about the idiot cop who wanted to donate his left nut to the cause of gun control.  He will probably lose a lot more than his left nut.  And if I’m not mistaken, there is further action on this front.

Eugene Volokh On The Second Amendment And Magazine Capacity

BY Herschel Smith
10 years, 1 month ago

Eugene Volokh:

A gun with a larger than usual capacity magazine is in theory somewhat more lethal than a gun with a 10-round magazine (a common size for most semiautomatic handguns), but in practice nearly all shootings, including criminal ones, use many fewer rounds than that. And mass shootings, in which more rounds are fired, usually progress over the span of several minutes or more. Given that removing a magazine and inserting a new one takes only a few seconds, a mass murderer — especially one armed with a backup gun — would hardly be stymied by the magazine size limit. It’s thus hard to see large magazines as materially more dangerous than magazines of normal size.

[ … ]

Still, these same reasons probably mean that the magazine size cap would not materially interfere with self-defense, if the cap is set at 10 rather than materially lower. First, recall that until recently even police officers would routinely carry revolvers, which tended to hold only six rounds. Those revolvers were generally seen as adequate for officers’ defensive needs, though of course there were times when more rounds are needed.

[ … ]

… even if bans on magazines with more than 10 rounds are unwise, not all unwise restrictions are unconstitutional. That’s true for speech restrictions. It’s true for abortion restrictions. And I think it’s true for gun restrictions as well.

This is an oddball commentary by Eugene.  I don’t think the issue is whether, as the judges tried to adjudicate, a magazine capacity restriction burdens the second amendment, but whether those who are protected are burdened by the restriction.  It’s not a trivial distinction.

I’m not really sure why he drew on the issue of abortion rights to create the analogue.  It isn’t a very good one.  The wording of the second amendment is clear, including the phrase “shall not be infringed.”  The Supreme Court created a right to abortion ex nihilo.

Even if you believe that such a right exists, the analogous wording isn’t there in the constitution to protect it.  Thus, restrictions on abortion have no equivalency to restrictions on firearms.

Furthermore, there is a case to be made that restrictions on abortion and lack of restrictions on firearms have the same goal, i.e., the preservation of life.  Eugene provides the defeater argument for his own case, and states a contradictory conclusion anyway.  But firearms are used for more than just personal defense.  They are also necessary for the amelioration of tyranny.  Both of these are life preserving things, just as restrictions on abortion are life preserving restrictions.

Why Eugene didn’t choose to work on this angle and why he chose the opposite, is anyone’s guess.  All in all, this isn’t one of Eugene’s better pieces of work.  I think he missed the mark, and widely so.

For magazine capacity and what it may do for you, see also my analysis of Mr. Stephen Bayezes.

Questions Grow Over Armatix ‘Smart Guns’

BY Herschel Smith
10 years, 1 month ago

David Codrea:

In a related development, this column has been following up on what should be a larger concern for gun owners, and that is how the Armatix pistol made it on to California’s “safe handgun roster” without incorporating microstamping technology months after the state certified it was a requirement for all new semi-automatic handguns listed.

Because laws are for little people.  I suspect that regardless of what the law says, gun haters in California were able to slip this one in because they consider it a good trade.  They give up microstamping, and in return they get the ability to control forevermore the ability to sell or gift a firearm.  David will eventually find out and tell us.

Also see David’s article for the information on Armatix support for global disarmament efforts.  You should never purchase anything from this company.  They are in bed with the totalitarians.

Finally concerning California, I am reminding you that I still haven’t heard anything back from Smith & Wesson on whether they will continue to supply handguns that have not been microstamped to California LEOs while they don’t sell at all to California residents.

It gripes my ass that this double standard exists.  Laws aren’t for the little people.  Smith & Wesson shouldn’t sell at all in California, including to LEOs.

Speaking of double standards, were you aware that LEOs are exempt in Connecticut from its newest gun bans, and can have AR-15s along with standard capacity magazines – for their personal use?  No, not for on-duty use, but for personal use and protection?

Well, you know now.  This was the bribe that the Connecticut legislature made to the LEOs to get their cooperation in enforcing the law.

Prior: Smart Guns Tag

10 Things The Gun Community Has Tried To Tell You

BY Herschel Smith
10 years, 1 month ago

Following the pattern set by Ms. Catey Hill writing at WSJ, it seemed prudent to address at least ten things that we’ve tried to tell you.  Whether you’re listening is usually evident by whether you write things like Catey or say stupid things like, say Michael Bloomberg.  At any rate, here are the ten things.

1. Concerning Gun Safety

Catey says of the “gun industry” (whatever that is) that “Owning our product may be hazardous to your health.”  That wasn’t what I was thinking at all.  I was thinking that we’ve tried to tell everyone that guns, like automobiles, like ladders (50% of falls from ladders kill), can be unsafe when treated that way.  Online forums repeat the rules for gun safety to the point that it is almost excruciating, and yet I know them by heart and practice them everywhere I go.  I’ve never had an accident or so-called “negligent discharge” with a gun.  Because, you know, I’m responsible.  I wish I could say the same thing about those idiot kids driving down my road in hot rods, far too fast for neighborhood safety.

2. Concerning Guns and Fear

Catey says of the gun industry, “Fear is good for our bottom line.”  That wasn’t what I was thinking at all.  I was thinking that just like the industry surrounding door locks, being prepared is a good thing.  It usually involves patience, study and a little bit of money.  For some reason I’m reminded of a story.  An older lady is stopped by a Highway Patrol Officer, and like a responsible gun owner she informs him that she has three handguns in the car, a .45 1911, a .357 Magnum S&W revolver and yet another revolver (perhaps it’s another S&W revolver, this time a .38).  The officer asks what she’s so afraid of, and she replies, “Not a damn thing officer.”

3. Guns & The Law

Catey says that “Guns get special treatment under the law.”  That wasn’t what I was thinking at all.  I was thinking that we’ve tried to tell you that guns are in that special category of being specifically mentioned in the constitution, just like free speech and the right not to quarter troops in your home or the right to refuse to testify against yourself.  It’s a fundamental God-given right, and recognized as such in the constitution.  Hence, you must tread carefully on this terrain.

4. Children & Guns

Catey says of the gun industry, “We want your kids to play with guns.”  That wasn’t what I was thinking at all.  I was thinking that we’re tried to tell you our stories of learning to shoot when we were children (I learned on my father’s 10/22 in my back yard), our stories of learning gun safety as youngsters, and learning to listen carefully to our parents and mentors.  For this reason – and others – those lessons are burned into our memories.  What we learn as children is difficult to forget as adults.

5. Gun Control

Catey says of the gun industry that “Gun control may work.  We still think it’s a bad idea.”  That wasn’t what I was thinking at all.  Except for willful disobedience to clearly obscene laws (like what is going on in Connecticut right now), gun control absolutely works.  We’ve tried to tell you that it works for its intended purpose, i.e., control of the citizens (gun control is all about control).  We’ve tried to tell you it has nothing whatsoever to do with crime or violence.  We’ve tried to tell you that the proponents of gun control know this as well, and routinely set up a straw man to hide their real intentions.  Let me demonstrate for a moment.  At Daily Kos, this bit of honesty appeared one day.

The only way we can truly be safe and prevent further gun violence is to ban civilian ownership of all guns. That means everything. No pistols, no revolvers, no semiautomatic or automatic rifles. No bolt action. No breaking actions or falling blocks. Nothing. This is the only thing that we can possibly do to keep our children safe from both mass murder and common street violence.

Unfortunately, right now we can’t. The political will is there, but the institutions are not. Honestly, this is a good thing. If we passed a law tomorrow banning all firearms, we would have massive noncompliance. What we need to do is establish the regulatory and informational institutions first. This is how we do it.  The very first thing we need is national registry. We need to know where the guns are, and who has them.

Yea, I know what you’re thinking.  It seems invasive and creepy to me too, sort of like a fat uncle who can’t stop staring at little girls during family reunions.  That’s the way anti-gunners are.

6. Guns & Politics

Catey says of the gun industry, “Politically, we’re practically unbeatable.”  This was exactly what I was thinking, except substitute gun owners for gun industry.  And I don’t know why you’re not listening.  If you were you wouldn’t have enacted those obscene laws in New York and Connecticut.

7. Guns & Obama

Catey says of the gun industry, “Under ‘Gun Ban Obama,’ we’re doing just fine.”  That wasn’t what I was thinking at all.  I was thinking that in spite of gun ban Obama, we’re doing just fine.

8. Guns & Advocacy

Catey says, “Sometimes we aren’t ‘pro-gun’ enough.”  To add insult to injury, she brings up the S&W boycott.  Sheesh!  I do hate to rehearse that bit of pain because I love S&W so much, but I have indeed pointed out that we reward those who are friendly to us and punish those who aren’t.  So this is sort of what I was thinking along with Catey.  I’m glad we could agree on something.

9. Guns and Gun Sales

Catey says of the gun industry, “We sell guns to people you might not want us to.”  That wasn’t what I was thinking at all.  I was thinking that I’ve tried to tell you that I know your real intentions.  I am on this list of people “you might not want” to have guns, along with every other law-abiding citizen.  I know this, and you know this.  Now it’s just a matter of telling everyone else the truth.

10. Ammunition Availability

Catey say of the gun industry, “Ammo is our secret weapon.”  That wasn’t what I was thinking at all.  I was thinking just today that if I didn’t have my truck, I wouldn’t have to buy so much gasoline.

There are many more things, but that covers it for now.

Smart Gun Failure?

BY Herschel Smith
10 years, 1 month ago


The California gun store that put the nation’s first smart gun on sale is facing a furious backlash from customers and gun rights advocates who fear the new technology will encroach on their Second Amendment rights if it becomes mandated.

Attacks in online forums and social networks against the Oak Tree Gun Club have prompted the store to back away from any association with the Armatix iP1 smart gun. The protests threaten the nascent smart gun industry, which received a jolt of support recently when a group of Silicon Valley investors offered a $1 million prize for promising new technology.

The vitriol began almost immediately after The Washington Post reported last month that the Armatix iP1 smart gun was for sale at the pro shop. Electronic chips inside the gun communicate with a watch that can be purchased with the gun, making it impossible to fire without the watch. Gun control advocates, who believe smart guns could reduce gun violence, suicides and accidental shootings, marked the moment as a milestone.

“These people are anti-gunners,” someone said of Oak Tree on the store’s Facebook page, adding, “I will never step foot in this dump.” On Yelp, a user wrote, “If you care about the ability to exercise your [Second Amendment] rights, I would suggest that you do not continue to frequent this place.”

[ … ]

Gun rights advocates and Armatix executives have been mystified by the store’s response, which has been to deny ever offering the gun and apologizing for any confusion in several places online, including to a gun rights advocate at

The denials come despite Oak Tree owner James Mitchell’s extensive comments about why the gun was put on sale there. Armatix executives also provided The Post with two photos of the gun for sale in a gun cabinet at the facility, as well as multiple photos of customers shooting the iP1 at an event in a specially designed firing range with large Armatix signs.

Like I’ve said before, spend all the money you want on “smart guns,” advertise it until your heart is content, and talk it up big.  The gun owner market will determine how it does.  Bring your wallet and join the fray, if you dare.

And it doesn’t.  That’s the end of the story.  Wasted money.  Wasted because no one who understands anything about machinery – and I do because I’m a registered professional engineer – will pay one cent for a monstrosity like that.

That doesn’t even touch on the issue of inhibiting the ability to resell, becoming a de facto universal background check for gun owners (which is itself evil), and being able to identify to the .gov where you are at any given time.

And like I’ve said before, gun owners rarely forgive and rarely forget.  We reward those who are friendly to us, and punish those who aren’t.

See also Kurt Hofmann’s latest article on this, Backlash against gun shop shows gun owners smarter than ‘smart gun’ pushers, where he says “gun owners, and more specifically, gun buyers, wield enormous power over the gun industry, and thus enormous capacity to punish collaboration with the forces of “gun control.”

Prior: Smart Guns Tag

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