Archive for the 'BATFE' Category



ATF Records Keeping

BY Herschel Smith
5 days, 16 hours ago

The Trace:

The government takes making gun records difficult to search quite seriously. A Government Accountability Office report released August 1 concluded that in two data systems, the ATF did not always comply with “restrictions prohibiting consolidation or centralization” of records. The GAO, which is entrusted with ensuring that federal agencies follow the law, was essentially chiding the ATF for making it a bit easier for its hundreds of investigators to do their jobs.

Alarmed headlines from conservative publications followed. A Fox News pundit falsely claimed the report found the agency had “a list of every gun owner and every gun owned.”

Congress imposes conflicting directives on the ATF. The agency is required to trace guns, but it must use inefficient procedures and obsolete technology. Lawmakers in effect tell the agency to do a job, but badly.

Investigators scan and save them as digital image files. They are like online piles of paper, or PDFs, arranged by one field only.

Trick question: The system can’t really be considered a database. (There is a reason the ATF uses the phrase “data systems” instead). There is no ability to search the text of a file, and no effort is made to tag files with identifiers that could later be used to sort and search. “We compare it to an electronic card catalog system, where records are digitally imaged, but not optimized for character recognition,” ATF spokesman Corey Ray says.

The only thing better than obsolete technology would be nothing at all – no records, no cards, no PDFs.  Because, “shall not be infringed.”  Besides, one can quite easily turn this into a system capable of OCR.

I say trash all of the records in a gigantic fire, with celebratory partying and great fanfare.

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
1 year ago

David Codrea:

A legal response filed by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives claims a Freedom of Information Act-related complaint improperly targets them. “The ATF is not an ‘agency’ within the meaning of the F.O.I.A., 5 U.S.C. § 552 (f) (1), and is, therefore, not a proper party defendant,” the response claims . . .

The complaint, filed June 23 in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, seeks an order to compel the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to comply with a Freedom of Information Act request filed in March and ignored in violation of federal law. The FOIA sought copies of policies and rulings relied on in enforcement and determination actions.

The complaint was filed by Tucson attorney David T. Hardy. Plaintiffs include this correspondent, firearms designer and president of Historic Arms, LLC, Len Savage, and the FFL Defense Research Center. The information, as noted in the announcement of the lawsuit, is being sought to ensure consistency in rulings, policies and compliance enforcement.

This is what happens when Congress enables unaccountable totalitarians to enforce their laws.  Congress turns out to be pathetic little pussies, and the totalitarians shove everyone around, including Congress.  Do you need any more to convince you that the ATF needs to go?  No, not to give their functions to the FBI.  Just go away and never come back in any manifestation or form at all.  Pink slips for everyone – or option two – pack you bags for the border boys.  You’re going to be walking a beat at the line to see if any of those guns you sold to the cartels gets used against you.

Mike Vanderboegh needs to talk to some good reloaders.  That list would not include me, but I have looked for a .45 carbine before.  Didn’t find anything that interested me.  The advantage, of course, is that I shoot a lot of .45 and it’s nice to minimize calibers in your gun safe.

Bear attack and resultant human fatality.  I just can’t say it enough, folks.  When you go into the wild, carry guns, big sticks (trekking poles) and knives.

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
1 year, 6 months ago

David Codrea:

Washington State liberty activist Anthony Bosworth was arrested Wednesday outside a federal building for openly carrying a firearm, an announcement on Bosworth’s Facebook page reports. Within hours, he had been released with no criminal charges, his wife informed supporters.

Liberty advocate Kit Lange has fleshed out further details of the arrest on the website for The Patrick Henry Society. The “co-organizer of Arms Expo 2015 was arrested this morning outside the federal courthouse in Spokane as he attended a states’ rights rally with his family,” Lange reports.

Bosworth was arrested in front of his wife and children by agents for the Department of Homeland Security, who “claimed that Bosworth was in violation of federal law by open carrying a firearm on federal property.”

Read the rest of the report at Examiner.  I won’t be the first one, but I’ll certainly join the chorus and call bull shit on this one.  There is no such law that prohibits firearms on “federal property,” as if all property is subject to a single law.  For example, firearms are certainly allowed in national parks and have been since 2010.  A military base is technically considered a federal reservation, and firearms are allowed there (even personal ones with approval).  The arresting officer just made that one up.

Read Mike Vanderboegh’s take on this.  ” I was particularly interested that the FBI was particularly interested in talking to Anthony about me. Nice to know I’m living in their heads rent-free as well. (Maybe they can get with Gottlieb and split the cost.) The FBI, it seems, is particularly interested in the national armed civil disobedience movement. It really must flummox them. We don’t fit any pattern they’ve seen recently …”

David Codrea:

Setting the state up for massive gun owner civil disobedience along the lines of what has occurred in California and is currently happening in New York and Connecticut, Democrat State Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins filed the Firearms Registration Act with the Secretary of State on Friday. The act was then presented for first reading and referred to the Democrat-dominated Assignments Committee.

Collins’ measure “[p]rovides that every person in the State must register each firearm he or she owns or possesses in accordance with the Act,” the official synopsis declares.

It’s easy for people to file legislation that someone else has to enforce.  So send in the enforcers, Ms. Collins.  See what happens then.  Perhaps you can go on one of the raids yourself, no?

Kurt Hofmann:

But Dr. Alan Delamater says even exposing young teens to this environment is dangerous.

“It’s another family gaming activity, right? Wrong. I don’t think it’s just another activity. I think this is something that can seriously affect child development and not in a good way,” Dr. Delamater said.

Delamater does not clarify whether or not “exposing” these young men and women–some of whom will in a few short years be serving in the military–to all firearms represents a problem for “child development” (whatever that unspecified “problem” is), or if the danger is restricted to fully-automatic firearms.

What does the man want, for boys to play with dolls and learn how to self actualize each other?  Every man needs to know things like engine building, guns, and farm animals.  If you don’t, buy a gun and learn to use it, tear an engine down, and volunteer your time at a ranch training horses.  And stay away from Dr. Delamater while he wets his pants.

Kurt Hofmann:

They’re refusing shipment until they know more about how it will be regulated–a pretty strong indicator that they know it’s not regulated now.  As Wilson says, there is absolutely no reason for FedEx to be concerned about legal issues, because there are no legal issues with shipping CNC milling machines. Wilson also points out that FedEx ships actual guns and ammunition, both of which are heavily regulated under federal and many states’ laws, and that hasn’t stopped them.

Read the rest of Kurt’s analysis.  I think Kurt is right.  There has been some dirty dealing going on behind closed doors on this one.

Christian militia takes on ISIS.  I want to be careful and very Christian as I respond to this and provide an assessment  – as a Christian.  Okay, here it goes.  May the Christian militia make the streets run red with the blood of the savages and send them to meet their maker who will send them to hell.  Godspeed to the militia.

The ATF reaffirms the Sig pistol brace is legal after all.  Whatever.  This is all being done by a bunch of worthless lawyers who have never used the thing and wouldn’t know it from a 2X4 if it bit them in the ass.  Ignore them and do what you want to with the brace.  The ATF has turned so paranoid and controlling they have become an undignified, unprofessional, boorish bore, like that uncle who cleans septic tanks for a living, the one with bad breath and creepy looks whom everyone avoids.

ATF Proposes New Rules On ‘Green Tip’ Ammunition Ban

BY Herschel Smith
1 year, 6 months ago

David Codrea:

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives posted a proposed rule change Friday removing a previous exemption and banning the manufacture, import and sale of “5.56 mm (.223) SS109 and M855 ‘green tip’ ammunition containing a steel core,” saying it now considers it to be “non-sporting” handgun ammunition capable of penetrating protective vests worn by law enforcement officers. This latest development, ceding to law enforcement lobby interests, is prompted by the development of handguns capable of firing the cited ammunition.

[ … ]

“This ‘sporting use’ strategy was used before,” author and attorney Richard Stevens documented. “The Nazi Weapons Law (18 March 1938) forbade importation of weapons under substantially the same test.” Additionally, the intent of founders in drafting the Second Amendment makes no such exception to allow “sporting purpose” infringements, particularly by the federal government.

Read all of David’s well-sourced article.  Steel tip (aka “green tip”) ammunition is designed a little heavier for slightly different flight and terminal ballistics and better penetration at long distances.  There are a host of reasons someone might want to have this ammunition, not all of which have to do with so-called sporting purposes according to the ATF.  Then again, my definition of sporting purposes and the ATF’s definition of sporting purposes differ by a wide margin.

The Sporting Purposes test should be found unconstitutional since the second amendment pertains to the amelioration of tyranny rather than hunting.  The ATF has crafted a regulatory framework that contradicts and violates the intent of the founding fathers.  Therefore, everyone who works for the ATF is undermining the constitution.

On a personal note, I would like to thank Eric Holder for reminding me that it’s important to keep track of the good bargains in my area of operations.

M855

450 rounds of M855 “green tip,” 30 cents per round – ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

As for Holder and the lawyers at ATF who have crafted such statist regulations, and the Golgothan for whom they all work, you will see your maker soon enough and then answer for your sins.

Government Attorneys Guilty Of Fraud In Dobyns Case

BY Herschel Smith
1 year, 7 months ago

David Codrea:

Further detailed allegations, being investigated by this reporter and seemingly corroborated by the unsealed opinion, include Judge Allegra being contacted by Internal Affairs Investigator Christopher Trainor, a key witness in the Dobyns case, concerning his being threatened by a main government witness — one the judge himself had raised perjury questions about — and chillingly,also threatened by lead government attorneys. Trainor had reportedly earlier given the intimidation to ATF, which opened a criminal investigation, and then approached ATF and Department of Justice attorneys, both of whom allegedly refused to report the witness tampering allegations to the judge. It is further alleged Trainor was warned by the DOJ attorney that if he reported the witness to Judge Allegra, his career at ATF would suffer.

The judge then reportedly notified Attorney General Eric Holder, then-Deputy AG and (“Number Two” at Justice) James Cole, and the Office of Inspector General of DOJ attorney fraud against the court, and issued an order barring seven of the attorneys from filing any further legal documents in the Dobyns case. Although no direct connection has been established, it is noted that the timing of the judge’s notification appears contemporaneous with Cole’s resignation and Holder’s announced resignation.

I encourage readers to study David’s other research into the Dobyns case linked at this article.  This is extremely serious stuff.  First of all, it demonstrates a complete lack of professional ethics and personal moral compass.  But on top of that, this is criminal activity, and if it can be proven to the standards of the American Bar Association, they could be disbarred.  Finally, if it can be proven beyond a reasonable doubt, they could face criminal penalties.

This is a very big deal, and it goes to show the lengths that the government went to cause disrepute on Mr. Dobyns.  The Arizona Daily Star reporter that David cited can’t fathom why the justice department would have gone to these lengths in a simple contractual dispute.  The answer is that this is more than a simple contractual dispute.  This goes to the entire obscene connection of the government with running guns to the Mexican cartels in order to justify more gun control for Americans.  They tried to ruin this man’s reputation and destroy his life.

It’s a picture of a failed state, because the government has lost the mandate of heaven.  It cannot be entrusted with even the most basic safety, health and welfare of society.  The federal government has itself become a criminal cartel.

Texas Bills Seek To Ban Enforcement And Nullify Federal Gun Control

BY Herschel Smith
1 year, 9 months ago

Tenth Amendment Center:

AUSTIN, Texas (December 1, 2014) – Today, two bills were filed in the Texas state house that would have the effect of nullifying virtually all federal gun control measures in the state. Sources close to the Tenth Amendment Center say that the bills have a good chance of passage, but only with strong grassroots support.

Introduced by Rep.Matthew Krause, (R-Ft. Worth) House Bill 422 (HB422) would require that the state refuse to enforce almost all federal gun control measures enacted at anytime – past, present or future.    It reads, in part:

An agency of this state or a political subdivision of this state, and a law enforcement officer or other person employed by an agency of this state or a political subdivision of this state, may not contract with or in any other manner provide assistance to a federal agency or official with respect to the enforcement of a federal statute, order, rule, or regulation purporting to regulate a firearm, a firearm accessory, or firearm ammunition if the statute, order, rule, or regulation imposes a prohibition, restriction, or other regulation, such as a capacity or size limitation or a registration requirement, that does not exist under the laws of this state.

This would make a huge dent in any new federal effort to further restrict the right to keep and bear arms in Texas. As Judge Andrew Napolitano has said recently, such widespread noncompliance can make a federal law “nearly impossible to enforce” (video here). Quite simply, the federal government absolutely cannot enforce gun control in Texas without the help of Texas.

A similar bill introduced by Krause in 2013 (HB928) passed out of the state house by a vote of 102-31, but since it was held to late in the session, the Senate never had the opportunity to concur.

Also introduced today is a bill known as the 2nd Amendment Preservation Act. Filed by Rep. Craig Goldman (R-Ft. Worth), House Bill 413 (HB413) is an exact duplicate of HB176 filed last month by outgoing Rep. Tim Kleinschmidt (R-Lexington). Since Kleinschmidt is retiring from the state house to accept a new position with the state, HB176 is considered “dead” and HB413 is the active bill in its place.

HB413 declares all federal restrictions on the right to keep and bear arms to be “invalid” and “not enforceable” within the state of Texas. It reads, in part:

A federal law, including a statute, an executive, administrative, or court order, or a rule, that infringes on a law-abiding citizen’s right to keep and bear arms under the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution or Section 23, Article I, Texas Constitution, is invalid and not enforceable in this state.

If passed into law, all government agencies and employees within Texas would be banned from enforcing any federal law in violation of the act.

Read the Tenth Amendment Center for the rest of the details, one of which is a nice restriction on universal background checks and gun registration.  Of course as readers know, this one is near and dear to my heart.

And true enough, lack of participation by state and local law enforcement would make, let’s say, a ban on standard capacity magazines, completely unenforceable.  There is nothing wrong with the bills as constituted.  But they don’t go nearly far enough.

For instance, what if a federal requirement is enacted for FFLS to do something or other that most Texans believe infringes on their rights under the Texas constitution?  The ATF can then threaten the FFL with revocation of their license, or perhaps even worse, fines and prison time, if he does not comply.  The federal government wins – unless, that is, the authorities in Texas are willing to send Texas law enforcement to arrest agents of the DoJ and ATF who reside in or enter the boundaries of Texas, with mandatory prison time as a consequence.

Just how free do Texans consider themselves?  The same question goes for the rest of us.

Court Rules On Rifle Purchases In Border States

BY Herschel Smith
2 years, 1 month ago

KRQE.com:

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – A federal appeals court has ruled that gun dealers in New Mexico and southwestern border states must tell authorities if someone buys more than two semi-automatic rifles in five days.

The decision comes after Ron Peterson Firearms of Albuquerque and two other gun shops filed a lawsuit in 2011, challenging a demand letter from the ATF to certain gun shops in New Mexico, Arizona, California and Texas.

The letter was issued as part of an ATF effort to crack down on weapons trafficking to Mexico and specifically targeted the southwest.

The courts affirmed a demand letter that has no basis in law, thus affirming that the ATF can do pretty much anything it wants to do.

Notice too that the stated reason is to target weapons trafficking, an argument I’m sure government lawyers made with a straight face in open court – and the judges let them.

Laughable, it is.  And a shame, that the federal government, being the chief weapons trafficker, bullies someone else for its crimes.

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
2 years, 3 months ago

David Codrea:

The same whistleblower source contacted this correspondent yesterday evening to express the opinion that questions raised in this column’s May 9 report have influenced this latest congressional inquiry. What remains to be seen now is how much stonewalling in response to the letter, which requests a response by June 2, will occur, and how much information Jones will withhold under a claim of “Privacy Act” provisions against disclosing personnel matters.

It’s always nice to see that David is making a difference with highly placed readers.  I have no indication at all that I’ve had such an effect.

David at JPFO:

“[C]ivilians are not allowed to possess machine-guns, military rifles and handguns … private possession of semi-automatic assault weapons [and] private possession of handguns (pistols and revolvers) is prohibited,” the site advises. Add to that licensing, background checks and registration for what they are allowed to own, a prohibition on concealed carry and stiff criminal penalties for gun law violations, and Nigeria is one of those places where the “law-abiding” are at extreme disadvantage.

Boko Haram, which doesn’t let such details slow them down a beat, finds such conditions enabling.

Recall also that we discussed Nigeria and gun control just a few days ago.  David prefaces his remarks by pointing out other problems associated with assistance to Niger.  I had also noted over the weekend that Nigeria is corrupt, with Army generals under investigation for providing weapons to Boko Haram.

Kurt Hofmann:

… the Bureau seems to have painted itself into something of an awkward corner when someone applies for a new machine gun on behalf of a trust.

I’ve seen that among other agencies and bureaus too when the combination of the law, regulation (which isn’t law no matter what you’ve been led to believe), interpretations of regulation, and filed federal register notices and discussions create such a confused entanglement and web of requirements that they are bound to be self contradictory somewhere.  The sad part is that this has never stopped any federal regulator from doing exactly what he wanted to do, in my experience.

Mike Vanderboegh has an interesting discussion on Wayned Hage and his battle with the BLM.  As the situation evolved between the BLM and Mr. Bundy, I also couldn’t help but think of Wayne Hage.

ATF Rulemaking On Adjudication As Mentally Defective

BY Herschel Smith
2 years, 4 months ago

Perhaps someone else I regularly read alerted me to this, but if so, I certainly overlooked it.  This one slid under the wire with me.  Comments close at midnight on April 7th, so these comments will have to suffice.  Prince Law Offices filed an objection to the rulemaking, and their filing is worth reading.  They observe that “few in the Firearms Industry wanted to take a stand against this new notice of proposed rulemaking.”  Perhaps so, but I’m not in the “industry.”  And I do indeed take a strong stand against this rulemaking.  Herein are my comments to the ATF.

The ATF is not the appropriate bureau of the executive to make decisions on adjudication on metal health of any sort.  Furthermore, even qualified individuals disagree with the notion that this will ameliorate crime or other nefarious uses of firearms.  Witness the following list of experts.

Dr. J. Michael Bostwick, Mayo Clinic: “We physicians generally do not know enough about firearms to have an informed conversation with our patients, let alone counsel them about gun safety.”  He continues by arguing:

  • Even if every mentally ill person in the country were registered, the system isn’t prepared to handle them — and only about half of the states require registration.
  • Only about 10 percent of mentally ill people are registered — and these are people who have been committed, they’ve come to attention in a way that requires court intervention.
  • Literature says the vast majority of people who do these kinds of shootings are not mentally ill — or it is recognized after the fact.
  • The majority of mentally ill people aren’t dangerous.

Dr. Richard Friedman: ” … there is overwhelming epidemiological evidence that the vast majority of people with psychiatric disorders do not commit violent acts. Only about 4 percent of violence in the United States can be attributed to people with mental illness.

Dr. Barry Rosenfeld: “”We’re not likely to catch very many potentially violent people” with laws like the one in New York.”

Dr. Steven Hoge: “One reason even experienced psychiatrists are often wrong is that there are only a few clear signs that a person with a mental illness is likely to act violently.”

And National Journal notes the following.

Perhaps most important, although people with serious mental illness have committed a large percentage of high-profile crimes, the mentally ill represent a very small percentage of the perpetrators of violent crime overall. Researchers estimate that if mental illness could be eliminated as a factor in violent crime, the overall rate would be reduced by only 4 percent. That means 96 percent of violent crimes—defined by the FBI as murders, robberies, rapes, and aggravated assaults—are committed by people without any mental-health problems at all. Solutions that focus on reducing crimes by the mentally ill will make only a small dent in the nation’s rate of gun-related murders, ranging from mass killings to shootings that claim a single victim.  It’s not just that the mentally ill represent a minority of the country’s population; it’s also that the overlap between mental illness and violent behavior is poor.

Attempts to restrict firearms ownership for the rightful and God-granted purposes of self defense suffer from lack of legitimacy (since ATF isn’t the right place for such rules to be born) and outrageous prejudice and bigotry, evil features of mankind’s sinful nature that have no place whatsoever in American society.

Since propensity to violence isn’t in any way able to be correlated to mental health issues, and since the mentally ill do not in large measure commit acts of violence at a higher rate than those who are supposedly mentally sound, this rulemaking is unjust and no more than an abortion.  Violence is a function of evil rather than mental soundness, something that an ATF questionnaire or doctor’s examination cannot quantify or repair.

ATF On NFA Firearms In Estates

BY Herschel Smith
2 years, 9 months ago

I am reproducing this entire post brought to you by AmmoLand because if I am not mistaken it is a release by the ATF and not unique to AmmoLand.

ATF has found that Federal firearms licensees are often involved in the disposition of National Firearms Act (NFA) firearms in estates of decedents.

As a result, ATF receives questions from licensees about the procedures involved to comply with the law.

Information regarding registered firearms is protected tax information and the release of the information by ATF is restricted. In general, the release can only be made to the executor (administrator, personal representative, or whatever term is used for the person appointed and tasked with disposing of any property in an estate).

ATF can respond to general procedural questions by the licensees, but, for specific questions, the response can only be to the person noted above.

Prior to the release of any registration information, the person requesting the information must provide documentation of their status to the NFA Branch.

The firearms must remain in the possession of the executor, until a transfer application has been submitted and approved. A transfer would include the disposition of an NFA firearm to a licensee for consignment or safekeeping.

Any unregistered NFA firearm(s) in an estate are contraband and there is no means by which these firearms can be registered. The executor should contact the local ATF office to arrange for the disposition of these firearms. The disposition of an NFA firearm to a beneficiary of an estate is on a tax-exempt basis (using ATF Form 5 to update the registry). However, in the case of multiple beneficiaries, ATF will request a release from any beneficiary who is not receiving the firearm. The laws of the State in which the decedent resided determine who is a beneficiary. The application for transfer to the beneficiary must include the beneficiary’s fingerprints and photographs.

The disposition of a serviceable NFA firearm to a person who is not a beneficiary is on a tax paid basis (using ATF Form 4). The disposition of an unserviceable NFA firearm to a person who is not a beneficiary is on a tax-exempt basis (using ATF Form 5). As noted above, the requirements of the NFA apply for these dispositions.

If the disposition is to a person in another State and the person is not a Federal firearms licensee or a beneficiary, then the firearm must be transferred to a Federal firearm licensee in the recipient’s State. After approval of the transfer and receipt by the licensee, the licensee would then apply to transfer the firearm to the purchaser.

Good grief.  None of this would be an issue if the Congress had not passed the NFA (and you know my position, i.e., that the Second Amendment frames in the federal government and restricts their actions, making all gun laws passed at the federal level unconstitutional).  Furthermore, none of this would be a problem were it not for the ATF, which in my opinion is an illegitimate arm of the federal government given the way I see the Second Amendment.

But here we are, with armies of lawyers trying to figure out ways to comply with the regulations, with armies of lawyers inside the beltway trying to figure out ways to make it hard to comply with the regulations.  This is what happens when the federal government is too big and powerful, which is exactly what our wise founders tried to avoid.


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