Walkabout In The Weminuche Wilderness

Herschel Smith · 05 Aug 2018 · 41 Comments

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

This Good-Faith Evidence Was Used By The Police As A Justification For Their Raid

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 6 days ago

News from New Zealand.

I opened the door to see a number of police officers outside. They served me with a search warrant under Section 6 of the Search and Surveillance Act 2012. Half a dozen armed police officers swarmed in the front door (holstered sidearms only) as several more ran around the sides of the house. They later called for more backup as the house was larger than your average state-house drug lab. I got the impression that they’d never had to raid a middle-class suburban house like mine before. Everyone on the property was detained, read their rights, and questioned separately. I opted to call a lawyer who advised me to refuse to answer any questions.

The warrant claimed they had reason to believe I was in possession of a prohibited magazine fitted to a “.22RL lever-action rifle. Blued metal, brown wooden stock.” The officer told me I had posted about it online, which I had—in my public written submission against the Firearms Amendment Act passed last year. That submission was shared on several blogs and social media. I had used the firearm as an example to prove the legislation was not targeting “military-style assault weapons” as the media, prime minister, and her cabinet repeated ad nauseum. The vast majority of firearms affected by the legislation were just like mine.

I thought nothing more of my little example to the select committee. It was no longer in my possession when the police raided my house. They departed empty-handed after turning the place inside out for ninety minutes and left me with my firearms and a visibly shaken wife who broke down in tears. Thankfully, the kids didn’t quite get what was going on—but I realised after that they had gone to bed without icecream.

I’ve been vocal about the amnesty being a disaster, and the police were rather open about the failure of the whole process. Maybe if they stopped raiding innocent people’s houses there might have been some more good will? They implied that they’d keep having to raid the houses of people I knew until the firearm turned up. This is for an A-Category firearm, which I have no reason to believe is fitted with a prohibited magazine! Are these the kind of intimidation tactics now the norm in New Zealand? Are we going to accept this in a first-world democracy?

This is for a lever-action .22LR that’s designed to hit paper or be used to hunt bunnies. What happened to going after the “weapons designed to kill people” as the police minister Stuart Nash has claimed?

The implications of this are rather stunning. I took the photo and publicised the details about this firearm as part of the select committee process. This good-faith evidence was used by the police as a justification for their raid. Do we now live in a country where public evidence given to a select committee will be used against you to suit the political purposes of the police?

You see, the problem here sir is that you are a peaceable, law abiding man.  That’s exactly who gun control laws target.  They intend it to be that way.They controllers don’t care about violent men, criminals or gangsters.

They fear you, a peaceable family man.  And yes, they even fear your lever action .22LR.  You can’t have anything.  The .gov has a monopoly on sanctioned violence, and thus you are left utterly powerless and impotent to protect your family against the gangsters, whether they work for the government or not.

Police Carrying Guns At All Times Is “Inevitable”

BY Herschel Smith
3 months, 4 weeks ago

News from New Zealand.

The president of the Police Association says it’s only a matter of time until police carry guns at all times.

His comment comes as police search for a man in the central North Island who allegedly pulled a gun on two officers and stole their car on Saturday night.

Chris Cahill says the incident highlights the risk that many officers face.

“It’s pretty scary and it’s just an add-on to so many others we’ve had,” he told the AM Show on Monday.

Cahill says that in the six months since March this year, there have been 179 incidents where criminals have pointed a gun at either an officer or a member of the public.

“It’s a bit more common than a lot of us realise,” he says.

“It continues to be a big concern in New Zealand – there’s just far too many firearms in the hands of criminals.”

Cahill says around 72 percent of frontline officers in his association support being armed at all times.

“What are you going to say to those officers who get a gun pointed at them and have nothing to protect themselves with?”

He says the Government’s gun buyback scheme introduced following the Christchurch mosque shootings is a great first step in limiting the number of firearms in circulation in the country.

“It’s great those New Zealanders that are handing in their firearms,” he says. “We know criminals arm themselves by stealing them from licensed firearm owners, so if we can get those sort of firearms out of the community and make sure security is better for the other firearms then there’s less chance of criminals having them and New Zealand will be safer all around for that.”

This is truly rich.  He advocates the disarming of the peaceable population so that criminals won’t have access to stolen firearms, so that cops won’t get guns pulled on them.

You read that right.  “What are you going to say to those officers who get a gun pointed at them and have nothing to protect themselves with?”

The same thing you say to anyone else who gets a gun pointed at them and has nothing to protect themselves with.  Welcome to gun control, where no one is safe.  It sucks to be you.  Glad you could join the party.

The Current Percentage Of Gun Turn-ins In New Zealand

BY Herschel Smith
4 months, 3 weeks ago

News from New Zealand.

“We’ve got about 17,000 firearms in total – those numbers are good, but we want them to be way better, quite frankly. I’ve just got to get on and make sure that we work as hard as we can. There’s six months we’ve been given to carry out the exercise.”

[ … ]

In March, the Council of Licensed Firearms Owners said there could be as many as 400,000 weapons in New Zealand covered by the new legislation – that would leave about $500 per gun.

17 / 400 = 4.25%.

That’s low, but I would have actually expected it to have been lower than that.  I’m left wondering what that 4.25% is going to do for defense of home and hearth in the future?

And I wonder what the final percentage will be?  Do my New Zealand readers want to weigh in?  I know you’re out there.  I see you.

Gun Buy-Back Begins In New Zealand

BY Herschel Smith
6 months, 2 weeks ago

NYT:

WELLINGTON, New Zealand — More than 150 gun owners turned in semiautomatic weapons and gun parts to the police in Christchurch, New Zealand, on Saturday, the first day of nationwide gun buyback events after the government banned most such firearms in the wake of a terrorist attack on mosques in the city.

Mike Johnson, the commander of the district’s police department, told reporters that gun owners would be paid a total of close to $300,000 for the 224 now-illegal weapons handed over during the five-hour event.

[ … ]

“They were surprised that they were not able to leave with their firearms when they heard the prices and were not happy with them,” she said.

The most amusing thing about this is that it is reported as a success, but it involved only a few hundred gun owners.  What do you reckon word of pissed off gun owners will do to the coming swarms of people ready to turn in guns?  In related news, changes have come to New Zealand.  A national Islamic call to prayer was issued back in March.

What?  They couldn’t trust the government?

Resolve never to be disarmed.

New Zealand Struggles To Round Up Banned Firearms Under New Gun Control Law

BY Herschel Smith
6 months, 4 weeks ago

The giddy celebrations of the American left over the wonderful New Zealand law seem to have subsided, and you don’t hear much about it any more.

It was one of the defining moments as New Zealand grieved after a pair of deadly mosque attacks: a near-unanimous parliamentary vote in April to ban assault-style rifles and similar weapons.

The lawmakers’ move was immediately acclaimed by gun-control advocates worldwide as an example of decisive collective action in a nation unified in horror by the March 15 assaults in Christchurch that left 51 people dead.

Then the momentum began to slow.

Growing opposition from New Zealand’s pro-gun groups has complicated efforts to round up the now-banned firearms under a buyback program. Lawsuits are threatened.

Gun-control advocates argue that compensation rates may not be fair and warn of a possible spike in black-market sales.

The government, meanwhile, is faced with a sobering set of challenges over how to enforce the new law.

There is no national registry for many of the weapons targeted by the ban, including the AR-15 – a semiautomatic rifle that has been used in mass shootings in the United States and is often at the center of American gun-control debates.

As a result, estimates of the numbers of newly banned weapons vary widely. So far, about 700 firearms have been voluntarily surrendered.

Authorities are “operating a little bit in the dark,” said Joe Green, gun-safety specialist and former arms control manager for the New Zealand Police.

[ … ]

Stuart Nash, the minister for police, announced last week that nearly 200 collection events would take place over the next three months in community hubs, including in some of the country’s largest sports stadiums.

“We urge people to stay calm,” Mike Clement, New Zealand Police’s deputy commissioner of national operations, told The Washington Post.

“We acknowledge that you’re a law-abiding citizen and through no fault of your own you now find yourself in possession of firearms that are now illegal,” he said, but he noted that once the amnesty period expires, there is no excuse for holding on to weapons.

[ … ]

But Yasbek pointed out that some of the banned weapons, including AR-15 rifles, fall into Category “A” in the New Zealand licensing system, which means they were not required to be registered in police databases and as such will be impossible to trace.

“These weapons are unlikely to be confiscated by police because they don’t know of their existence,” she said. “These will become black-market weapons if their owners choose not to comply with the law and become criminals instead.”

That’ll do it.  Call them “criminals.”  That’ll make them turn in the guns.  I’m sure their feelings will be hurt by the indictment.

On the other hand, if you declare them all criminals, what have they got left to lose?  Why not convert them all to fully automatic?  If they’re going to traffic in the black market now, what’s to stop them from acquiring more powerful weaponry?

That may be a less than fortuitous turn of events for the New Zealand police, yes?  Too bad.  Should have thought about that beforehand.

If More Money Is Needed, That Money Will Be Found

BY Herschel Smith
7 months ago

[From the video] It sounds like something a .gov would say, regardless of manifestation.

The owner of one of New Zealand’s largest ammunition companies has warned of a violent revolution if gun owners feel shortchanged by the Government’s gun buyback scheme.

Paul Clark’s company, New Zealand Ammunition, supplies both the Police and the Defence Force. He told RNZ‘s Checkpoint that many gun owners were planning to intentionally skirt the law by hiding their banned weapons.

He was “absolutely sure” that gun owners or organisations would appeal to the courts over the proposed prices of the gun buyback, and he was currently considering taking an action himself.

He said that if gun owners could not access the courts “the only alternative is revolution”.

When asked by host Lisa Owen what he meant by “revolution”, Clark said “Literally, what I just said. What have you got to lose? What other alternatives have you got in life?”

When Owen asked if he was talking about “a physical, violent, uprising,” Clark said it was likely.

“Yes, it could happen,” he said. “People are aggrieved. You’ve been screwed by a government for a crime you didn’t commit. How do you think that makes you feel?”

He said he knew of gun owners who were being radicalised as a result of the gun buyback.

“There’s a lot of pissed off people. It wouldn’t take a lot to set some people off. There’s some pretty heavy, strong, hard feelings out there.”

However, he said he would not go to police with the information he had, because “I didn’t create the problem, someone else did”.

He estimated that he would lose hundreds of thousands of dollars as a result of the gun ban, including orders that he has had to cancel.

On Thursday, Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Police Minister Stuart Nash announced the budget of the gun buyback scheme had been increased to $208 million.

A police price list showed that guns in new or near new condition would get 95 per cent of its base price, guns in used condition would receive 70 per cent of value, and guns in poor condition would see 25 per cent.

“Injury prevention program.”  It all sound so innocuous, yes?  But revolution.  What?

Over money?  A few dollars worth of firearms?  So what is it, my friends and readers in New Zealand?  Is it turn in your weapons, hide them, wait for fair payment, or revolt?

“Injury prevention program.”  Remember those words.  You might hear them again by another slick politician.

New Zealand’s Plan To Buy Back Illegal Firearms Angers Gun Advocates

BY Herschel Smith
7 months, 1 week ago

News from New Zealand.

“Some of the offered prices for higher-end firearms are well out of kilter,” Nicole McKee, a council spokesman, was quoted by The New Zealand Herald as saying.

McKee said gun owners are “angry and they’re frustrated” because the government reneged on a promise not “to rip us off.”

You didn’t really expect otherwise, did you?

“The component prices are horrible robbery,” David Tipple, who owns a gun shop where the Christchurch shooter bought weapons, tells the Herald.

Tipple says he expects to lose “tens of thousands of dollars” in the buyback. Even so, he encourages owners to hand in their illegal weapons.

“We want them to comply,” he said. “Let’s get them paid quickly so we can get compliance. Nobody wants a black market.”

Oh, I suspect most gun owners want a black market.  Regardless of what anyone wants, that’s what’s going to happen.

Only 530 Semi-Automatic Guns Have Been Turned In, Say New Zealand Police

BY Herschel Smith
7 months, 3 weeks ago

News from New Zealand.

New figures show gun owners are holding back on handing in their firearms, because they’re waiting to hear how much the Government will pay for them

Figures released to Newstalk ZB by the New Zealand Police showed that, as of Sunday night, only 530 guns had been handed in since the ban on semi-automatic guns was finalised in early April.

There are around 250,000 licenced firearm holders in New Zealand and it’s estimated as many as 300,000 guns could now be illegal.

I laughed.

So many breathless articles here in America about how easy it was to make new gun control laws, unlike “Cowboy” America.

So much pining away and wishing for such a society by the progressives, so much desire for a state monopoly on violence.

And now, so much fail.

I laughed.

.22 WMR AR-15 Still Legal In New Zealand?

BY Herschel Smith
9 months, 1 week ago

News from New Zealand:

Critics of the Government’s gun law changes say a loophole means that a lower-powered version of the assault rifle used by the Christchurch mosque shooter remains legal.

Police have confirmed that an AR15 WMR .22 semi automatic with military-style features does not fit the definition of a prohibited firearm under the new law, provided it is fitted with a magazine holding 10 rounds or less.

The mosque shooter used a more powerful, centrefire version of the AR15, with large capacity magazines, during his rampage, which left 50 people dead.

He had bought his weapons on a standard firearms licence and illegally converted them to military-style with easily obtainable parts.

The Government banned all centrefire “military style” semi-automatics, but less powerful rimfire .22 semi-automatics remain legal for people holding a standard firearms licence.

Those weapons range from rifles that use standard .22 long rifle (LR) ammunition to a cartridge more than two times as powerful – the .22 WMR (Winchester Magnum Rimfire), also known as the .22 MAG.

Northland man Michael Beckett said he warned the select committee considering the changes that the .22WMR would become the weapon of choice of AR15 owners and become a threat to the public.

He was surprised it had not been covered in the amended law and feared it was a loophole that would be exploited.

Beckett said the standard .22LR was more than sufficient for pest control on farms – he described the .22 MAG as a “double deadly cartridge” with 2.6 times the muzzle energy of .22LR.

Oooo … a “double deadly cartridge.”  Damn.  Must get one of those.

To my readers in New Zealand (I know I have some), don’t be satisfied with the crumbs that fall from the master’s table like a dog.  Not that I have anything against the nice little .22 WMR (Kel-Tec makes a .22 WMR carbine), but a rimfire cartridge will always be a rimfire cartridge.  It’s dirtier and less reliable than a centerfire cartridge.

You have a God-given right to what you have sitting inside your gun safe right now, and more.

New Zealand Gun Laws: Taking Guns From Farmers And Making Them Use Contractors

BY Herschel Smith
9 months, 2 weeks ago

News from New Zealand.

Stripping farmers of their semi-automatic weapons and forcing them to use contractors for pest control is “completely illogical”, Federated Farmers says.

However, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says proposed legislation has tried to anticipate the “legitimate needs” of farmers.

On Monday, the Finance and Expenditure Committee released its report on a new law to ban semi-automatic and military-style weapons.

It recommended the bill be passed but suggested several changes, including allowing semi-automatic firearms to be used for pest control on farms.

Farmers would not be allowed to do the work themselves and would have to use specialised businesses approved by police.

“We consider that there would be some narrow circumstances where use of a prohibited firearm was absolutely necessary to carry out pest control on private land or non-conservation Crown land for conservation, environmental, or economic reasons,” the report said.

“Our recommendation would allow a private landowner to engage a wild-animal or animal-pest control business to use such firearms while still removing most semi-automatic firearms from circulation.”

Federated Farmers rural security spokesman Miles Anderson said the Government had failed to deliver on its commitment to landowners that they would continue to have access to the weapons required for effective pest control.

“There are five million hectares of privately owned high and hill country in New Zealand. What these landowners have been left with is the equivalent of painting the Auckland Harbour Bridge with a toothbrush.”

He said Federated Farmers had backed the Government on the issue of gun law reform from day one, based on the need to both protect public safety and ensure continuing access to the appropriate firearms for those with a genuine need.

“The whole select committee has shown both a lack of trust and a complete lack of understanding of the needs of the rural sector on this issue,” he said.

“Labour has the opportunity to fix the bill over the next few days, otherwise Federated Farmers will feel duped by this process.”

However, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said all elements of the gun debate had been considered and she hoped it had created an outcome there would be support for.

The proposed changes were in stark contrast to the Australian legislation and tried to anticipate the legitimate needs that existed within the farming community, she said.

When asked if the requirement for farmers to employ contractors for pest control sent a signal she did not trust them, Ardern replied,  “Absolutely not.”

“We created carve outs, particularly around the use of 10-round .22s five round shotguns but beyond that have put in place measures, where there is large scale pest eradication, for framers (sic) to be able to access those who can legitimately use those weapons, too.”

But Anderson said requiring farmers to use contractors for pest control was ineffective and inefficient and rural landowners with a genuine need to use the weapons should be eligible to apply for an exemption.

“For generations farmers have been doing that job and now they’re going to have some of the tools that allow them to do it effectively taken away.

“We’re not talking about AK-47s and we’re talking about hundreds of farmers, not thousands,” he said.

“There are farmers who are dealing with rabbits and they shoot tens of thousands every year. In those situations, a 50-round magazine wouldn’t be excessive.

“If you’ve got a mob of 30 goats, a 50-round magazine is probably the right tool for the job.”

You see, in a land where peaceable men give up their guns, the government gets to decide what is and isn’t allowed, and when “special people” get to do things that others do not.

And the government gets to decide “carveouts,” where they throw a bone to the slighted, call it even, and tell you there’s no room for debate.

And here’s a news flash for Mr. Anderson.  Naïve gun owners, who think they can just appeal to the sensible side of government for “special needs,” as long as it is someone else who gets the shaft, are always, always duped by the process.

I’ve told the Fudds among us before, and you’d better listen to me again.  “When you let the government go after other people because you aren’t affected, not only is that selfish and cowardly, it’s bad strategy.”

When you use bad strategy, you will always lose.  So your precious break-action or pump shotguns for fowl hunting, and your bolt action guns with a detachable magazine for deer hunting, yea those.  The FedGov will want those too.  They want all of the guns.  All of them.  No exceptions.

This picture of New Zealand – the American gun controllers and the FedGov is watching closely.  It’s a trial run, boys.


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