Monday, August 21, 2017

"Purge Begins: Cloudflare Terminates Service To Cody Wilson’s GhostGunner Website"


If the name Cody Wilson rings a bell, it should. Cody is the person who developed a 3-D printed firearm and then put the plans on the Internet. His company, Defense Distributed, is now in a court battle with the State Department over another of his 3-D printing plans which they have, for now, forced off the Internet. I met Cody at the 2016 Gun Rights Policy Conference when the Polite Society Podcast interviewed him. Cody is what I call a hard-core libertarian. However, what Cody is not is an alt-right, white supremacist, racist, fill-in-the-blank.

According to Wikipedia, Cloudfare is a " content delivery network, Internet security services and distributed domain name server services, sitting between the visitor and the Cloudflare user's hosting provider, acting as a reverse proxy for websites." They supposedly hold free speech is sacred and that includes what is posted on a website. That said, Cloudflare CEO Matthew Prince kicked off the neo-Nazi website The Daily Stormer from his service after Charlottesville on August 16th. He attributed his change of mind about free speech for all to waking up grumpy that morning.

Back to Cody Wilson. On Friday, Cloudfare abruptly terminated service to his GhostGunner.net site which sold 80% AR lowers and the machine tools to complete finishing these lowers. This began a war of words on Twitter between Cody Wilson and Matthew Prince. Cloudfare is insisting that GhostGunner.net had left on their own and that it had nothing to do with Wilson's tongue in cheek "Hatreon" alternative to Patreon. Wilson is saying Prince is a liar.

Who is right and who is wrong I am not sure. However, it does seem awfully suspicious that service was terminated so soon after that of the Daily Stormer. I don't know if it was retribution for Hatreon which has no "hate speech" restrictions or not.

As of this morning, GhostGunner.net and Hatreon.net are back up on the Internet. I am not tech-savvy enough to know where these sites are being hosted or who is providing all the Internet services. All I know is that Cody Wilson is a hard-core free speech activist and I'm glad to see he is back on the Internet.


Thursday, August 17, 2017

Bloomberg's Gun Control "PR Whiz" Aligns Herself With Communists


Those arrested in Durham, North Carolina for pulling down a Confederate monument all belong to the World Workers Party. It is a Communist party off-shoot. They broke away from the Socialist Workers Party in 1959 over doctrinal differences. It seems they considered themselves more Trotskyist than the SWP. The WWP later absorbed the Spartacist League which was itself a leading Trotskyist-influenced Communist party.

The main thing to understand is that they are Communists regardless of whether they follow Stalin or Trotsky or whether they are 3rd Internationalists or 4th Internationalists. The other thing to know about the World Workers Party is that they are very much supporters of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea aka North Korea. Indeed, they strongly believe Kim Jong-Un and North Korea need "The Bomb".

You can read their tirade about the "freedom fighters" pulling down the monument here.

Thus when I saw this tweet, I wondered if the PR whiz behind understands just who she is promoting and/or aligning herself with.



The Spartacist League was also known as the Spartacus League. It eventually became the Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands or the German Communist Party of pre-WWII Germany.

The irony of it is delicious.

The ignorance of that tweet is even more delicious.

"Gun Violence" Tax Receipts Prove People Vote With Their Feet


When the City of Seattle city council passed their "gun violence" (sic) tax in 2015 the proponent of the measure, Councilman Tim Burgess, projected tax revenues from it to be between $300,000 and $500,000 annually. Opponents of the measure suggested at the time that gun buyers would just avoid the $25 tax on firearms by purchasing their firearms outside the city limits. As we suspected all along the opponents were correct.

Thanks to a lawsuit originally brought by Dave Workman, senior editor of TheGunMag, Seattle was forced to divulge the real collection numbers. The real numbers differ from those projected by Councilman Burgess.

The real number is $103,766.22. Of that amount, $86,410 comes from Sodo's Outdoor Emporium whose owner has indicated that he might just shift his gun sales entirely to his other store outside of Seattle.

According to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Councilman Burgess isn't fazed by the numbers.
"I'm neither disappointed or pleased," he said Tuesday, adding that he knew the $300,ooo to $500,000 was just a guess. "It is what it is."

The tax charges $25 for every firearm sold in the city and 5 cents for every round of ammunition of .22 caliber or greater.

Harborview's take from the tax was always supposed to be about $130,000. The 2016 tax revenue falls short of that, but while the tax was contested in courts, the city allocated $275,000 from the general fund toward the study.
Money generated by the "gun violence" (sic) tax was supposed to go to fund "gun violence" (sic) research at Harborview Medical Center.

Burgess goes on to say about the tax collections:
Burgess defended the tax as a means of making gun sellers part of the solution to the effects of gun violence.

"The fundamental principle behind the tax is that the firearms industry should contribute to mitigating the harms caused by their products," he said. "That remains the primary motivation for the tax. That's what we set out to do, that's what we passed and that's what the state Supreme Court has validated."

The law was not written to specify where the tax revenue would go, but it was always intended to go toward programs like Harborview's, Burgess explained. So if the city had collected an amount beyond the agreed-upon $130,000, the excess would have gone to other education and public safety causes, he said.

But should the tax continue to generate less than $130,000 or progressively shrink, "then I'm sure my colleagues would continue to fund the program with other sources," Burgess said.
I guess in liberal paradises like Seattle the voters don't really care if their councilmen and women take a cavalier attitude towards taxes. That is just a price to pay to live in a city where the wealthy hire off-duty cops to give them extra protection from the criminal class.

Monday, August 14, 2017

NRA ≠ Nazi


I was reading Prof. William Jacobson's Legal Insurrection this morning. He had a post about the clash in Charlottesville this past weekend. He had a link to this tweet by Markos Moulitsas of Daily Kos.



I hate to disappoint Mr. Moulitsas but he is wrong in so many ways.

First, it has to be pointed out that conservatives and Nazis are not one and the same. In fact their beliefs are antithetical to one another. A conservative generally believes in smaller government while Nazis (from their origin in German) believe in a strong national government that pervades all aspects of life.

Second, while the NRA is generally a conservative organization, they are accepting of people from all walks of life. They have liberals and conservatives as members. They have gays and straights as members. They have Democrats and Republicans as members. Indeed, when the president of the NRA Pete Brownell has a scheduled phone conversation with Erin Palette of Operation Blazing Sword and asks how they can work together, I think that says it all in terms of acceptance.

I will grant you that there might be a member of the NRA who holds Nazi and/or fascist beliefs. But I would say that any mass organization of 5 million members with open membership is liable to have a few outliers within its membership rolls.


Sunday, August 13, 2017

Some Tab Clearing


It's summer and I've gotten a little lazy when it has come to blogging. Sometimes it is just preferable to sit out on the front porch, sipping a drink, and reading a bit of this and bit of that. There have been some things I've been meaning to comment on but never got around to it.

First, regarding Charlottesville, "white nationalists", the Klan, Nazis, Antifa, and the violence that happened yesterday:  when two groups filled full of hateful, violent people that I disdain go at hammer and tong, I say a pox on both their houses. It was the same feeling I had after the "Greensboro Massacre" back in 1979 when the Klan and American Nazis shot it out with the Communist Workers' Party at a "Death to the Klan" rally. I'm with Miguel on this when he says he doesn't care much about what happens to either group.

Leaving the sensationalism of the mass media behind, one of the bigger stories in the gun community has been the issue of Sig P320s accidentally firing when dropped in a certain way. Sig has issued a voluntary "upgrade" to fix this. If I owned one of these pistols, I'd send it in for the retrofit with the military trigger. It only makes sense from a civil liability standpoint. You can just imagine the questions that a plaintiffs' attorney would be asking if you dropped your firearm and someone was injured. It wouldn't be pretty. This post in The Firearm Blog has more on the story along with a ton of links.

While on the subject of recalls, Ruger has issued a recall on some of their Ruger Precision Rifles with the aluminum bolt shroud. The issue is the potential for interference between the bolt shroud and the cocking piece. This safety recall only pertains to those rifles with an aluminum bolt shroud and within serial number ranges of 1800-26274 to 1800-78345 and 1801-00506 to 1801-30461.

In legal news, the Washington State Supreme Court ruled 8-1 on Thursday that the Seattle "gun violence" tax did not violate that state's firearms preemption law. The lawsuit against the tax was a joint effort of the Second Amendment Foundation, the National Rifle Association, and the National Shooting Sports Foundation along with two businesses, Philip Watson, and the late Ray Carter aka GayCynic. Alan Gottlieb of the Second Amendment Foundation called the decision a "slap in the face to the Washington Legislature." He also correctly noted that gun owners need to get more involved in Supreme Court races (where the justices are elected).

Dave Workman, editor of The GunMag, has done superb reporting on the issue at Liberty Park Press and Conservative Firing Line. His posts on the court decision can be found here, here, here, and here. I think Dave is correct when he says that the Washington State Supreme Court may have opened a Pandora's box. I can see these sort of taxes being implemented up and down the West Coast as well in other gun control paradises.

Sebastian had a very thought provoking post on his blog regarding suicide and the unintended consequences of universal background checks. Research conducted at Oregon State University-Cascades found that gun owners were more receptive to suicide-prevention messages if they respected gun rights than if they were neutral. However, as Sebastian notes, universal background checks make it harder for a person to have their family hold their guns if they experience a mental health crisis.
Except Bloomberg has been going state-to-state trying to make that a crime. I have a standing order with family to remove my access to firearms if I ever have that kind of mental health crisis, but in states like Washington, where Bloomberg has been successful, that is a crime if you don’t first get the person in crisis to an FFL to pay hundreds of dollars to transfer the collection to the “trusted individual,” and then pay hundreds more once the crisis ends. The Oregon legislature was smarter, and made an exception to its laws, but there is a factor of “imminence” in the exception. Generally speaking, transferring a firearm to a “trusted individual” in Oregon is a crime. In Pennsylvania, this is also the case for handguns, unless the “trusted individual” has an LTC.

So don’t give me this bleeding heart shit. If gun control people gave a crap about suicide they wouldn’t be pushing for laws that criminalized gun owners for helping out friends.
Hat tip to my friend and podcasting co-host Rob Morse for pointing me to a success in court by NY gun rights attorney Paloma Capanna. Her case, Robinson v. Sessions, is on appeal to the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals. The lawsuit involves the sharing of information on the Form 4473 for purposes other than purchasing a firearm. The issue before the 2nd Circuit is whether the plaintiffs have standing to sue. In an answering brief, the Department of Justice lawyers acknowledged that the FBI has been running all NICS checks through the Terrorist Screening Database since 2004.
The error below arises from more than 15 years of litigation conducted by the ACLU, Amnesty International, and other groups, seeking to halt civil rights violations for those who are interrupted during travel because of a suspected match of the passenger to the “No-Fly List.” (The “No-Fly List” is a subset of the TSDB.) In those cases, the unlawful search and the invasion of privacy doesn’t begin until the person is pulled out of line and treated differently than other airline passengers going through open and obvious TSA screening procedures.

Plaintiffs in the Robinson case state that the violation of their civil rights begins the moment the FBI secretly uses their personal information from the ATF Form 4473 for the unauthorized purpose of checking them against the TSDB. Yes, a person who gets matched to the TSDB during a gun purchase at an FFL might have greater damages, but the harm hits every American attempting to make a lawful purchase at an FFL.
My friend Laura Carno has brought the FASTER training program to Colorado. The program involves intensive firearms, defensive, and medical training for school personnel in an effort to protect the students in the case of an active shooter event. FASTER was the brainchild of Buckeye Firearms Association and Tactical Defense Institute. She was interviewed about the program and their successes by Cam Edwards of NRA TV this week.

Is firearms training a religion? Regardless of whether it is or isn't, Kevin Creighton thinks it should be.  Looking at the great martial arts, they tend to include an element of religion in them according to Kevin. They helps inspire practitioners to rise about themselves in extraordinary situations. Situations like a gun fight which is definitely an extraordinary situation. Kevin concludes, "A religion of CCW isn’t going to save your soul, but it just might save your life."

Finally, attorney and Second Amendment scholar Dave Hardy has a new book coming out. The book entitled, I'm from the Government and I'm Here to Kill You: The True Human Cost of Official Negligence, is now available for pre-order on Amazon. I have pre-ordered my copy and would suggest that you might want to do so as well. Dave reports that the official release date is October 10th but it could actually ship earlier. Some of the events covered in the book include Waco, Ruby Ridge, Operation Fast and Furious, and the fallout from atomic testing. As Dave notes in the introduction which is available online:
One might have thought the premise “the King can do no wrong” would have no application in a nation with no king, but that is not how things turned out. Indeed, by the time our courts finished, they had immunized government officials high and low from liability for any wrongful injuries they inflicted upon the citizens who paid their salaries....

Federal officials have, as we shall see, blown up hundreds of people, spread radioactive waste over enormous areas, and ordered their subordinates to commit murder, all with legal impunity. When the government’s misdeeds were challenged in court, attorneys from the U.S. Department of Justice did not hesitate to conduct cover-ups, defraud the courts, and intimidate witnesses—all without worries about disbarment or other discipline. (In this book’s concluding chapter, we’ll examine how we can deal with these problems.)

When federal civilian employment was small, the risk of being injured by a negligent governmental employee was trifling. Today, there are over two million federal civilian employees, a workforce that dwarfs those of our largest corporations. This enormous workforce has almost complete legal immunity, no matter how lethal its transgressions.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

The Proper Response To GOP Requests For Money Is No


I received a plea for money today from Phil Berger who is the President Pro Tem of the North Carolina Senate. He was one of the politicians visited in Raleigh last week in GRNC's Squish the Magic RINO demonstration. He was targeted because HR 746 which would allow permitless concealed carry is still bottled up in the North Carolina Senate.




The proper response to any of these supposedly pro-gun Republicans asking for money is NO. As I said in my response to Sen. Berger, I wanted to see action and that means both bringing bills to a vote and an affirmative vote.

Any damn fool in Congress or a state house can introduce a bill. It doesn't mean it has a chance in hell of being passed. That is just a means of appeasement.

HB 746 is languishing in the North Carolina Senate waiting to be sent to the floor. Meanwhile, both national reciprocity and the Hearing Protection Act (or its variants) have not made it to the floor of either chamber of Congress. It is long past time for the state and national GOP to reward some of their most faithful supporters with passage of pro-gun legislation. Until I start to see some action, my checkbook stays closed.

Monday, August 7, 2017

"Only Cowards Carry" - Anti-Knife Campaign In The UK


The Essex Police Department in the United Kingdom is partnering with a group called Only Cowards Carry. Part of this partnership includes placing "knife bins" around the area where you can anonymously dump knives and, it appears, other sharp objects. They are calling it knife amnesty and the object is to reduce "knife crime" (sic). They had a post about it up on their Facebook page but it has been taken down according to KnifeNews.com.


Picture captured from Facebook by www.knifenews.com
According to the Essex Police Department's website, the bin is in Southend and is part of that town's knife amnesty campaign.

From their website:
In a move to tackle knife crime, Sergeant Kayleigh Webster from Southend’s Local Policing Team sought to have the bin donated to Essex Police by Only Cowards Carry, it will enable the safe disposal of all bladed items handed in as part of the amnesty.

The introduction of the knife amnesty bin in Southend follows bins being placed across the county. Since a trial of a knife amnesty in Tendring in 2014, more than 7,000 knives have been surrendered safely.

Since the launch of the bin, Southend’s Local Policing Team has opened the bin to discover over 30 knives and weapons have been surrendered.

The amnesty is being supported by Essex Police, the Essex Police and Crime Commissioner, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council and the Only Cowards Carry charity set up by Caroline Shearer in memory of her son Jay Whiston who was stabbed to death at a party in Colchester in September 2012.

Sergeant Kayleigh Webster from Southend’s Local Policing Team and her team have been working tirelessly over the past few months to carry out a number of operations around the clock to reduce weapon related crimes and violent crimes in Southend.

In a number of dedicated operations, Sgt Webster’s team have carried out over 50 stop and searches which led to police finding and seizing over 200 knives in Southend. A total of 40 people have been charged for being in possession of an offensive weapon.

Along with continued operations, Sgt Webster believes the knife amnesty bin will take more knives off of the streets of Southend. She said: “Knife crime has a devastating impact on the victim’s family, friends and the community. Having served Essex Police for nearly ten years, I’ve seen first-hand the impact that knife crime can have.
Only Cowards Carry Weapons Awareness is a registered charity - the UK version of a non-profit - located in eastern England. They have five of these knife bins in place and have plans for nine more. They put on a number of workshops in the area.

I feel for any mother who lost her child to a violent crime. However, blaming the tool instead of the actions of the violent offender is misplaced. You see that here in America with the various gun control groups. Moreover, terms like "knife crime" and "gun violence" are oxymorons. The knife didn't commit the crime anymore than the gun perpetrated the violence. They are both inanimate objects incapable of independent actions. It is the violent person who decides to act that is the problem and not the tool. If we are to blame all objects that are used in the commission of a violent act, then we also have steel-toed boot crime and stick on the ground violence. I doubt we'll see any organizations devoted to the outlawing of steel-toed boots or limbs that have fallen on the ground anytime soon.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Dave Workman And SAF Win Against City Of Seattle (Updated)


The City of Seattle thought adding a "gun violence tax" of $25 for every firearm sold within the city limits would raise between $300,000 and half a million dollars. They forgot to factor in that buyers can vote with their feet and patronize gun stores outside the city limits. Thanks to a lawsuit under the state of Washington's Public Records Act by Dave Workman and the Second Amendment Foundation, we now know the real amount collected. It was just a bit over $100,000 and most of that comes from one gun store that publicized its own figures.

It is not surprising that Seattle wanted to keep this embarrassing amount quiet. No politician wants the public to know that his or her pet program is an abject failure

According to the press release from the Second Amendment Foundation, they will be awarded a $377  fine plus their attorneys' fees. The fine is a dollar a day for each day the City of Seattle drug its feet in bad faith on releasing the requested information. The unfortunate part is that city taxpayers and not the politicians are the ones footing the bill.

Congratulations to Dave, Alan, and everyone else at SAF for their win on this First Amendment case with Second Amendment overtones.

UPDATE: More on the win by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Mike Coombs, owner of the Outdoor Emporium, was the store owner whose collections constituted about 80% of the collections. Given his comments in the interview, I think the real aim of Seattle City Council is to make the city the next San Francisco. That is, no gun stores within the city limits.
Coombs sought to force the city's hand by releasing his own pay-ins to the tax. He wrote in a memo to the court that he paid $86,410.63 last year.

The city has only said it collected less than $200,000 and that one business has paid more than 80 percent of the total tax revenue -- by that math, Coombs believe he is that big fish, and estimates the city only brought in about $108,000 total.

Coombs also laid out additional devastating statistics for his business: Outdoor Emporium's firearm sales dropped about 20 percent last year from 2015 and its ammunition sales were cut in half. Overall sales were cut 15 percent because customers who bought guns and bullets also bought other supplies at the store.

His store in Fife has not suffered the same losses.

"Many of our customers have told me that they stopped shopping at our store because of the firearm and ammunition tax, and that has meant that they have started shopping at stores outside Seattle for all their sporting goods needs," Coombs wrote to the court. "I believe most of Outdoor Emporium's loss of sales is directly linked to the firearm and ammunition tax."

What's more: Coombs laid off some staff and collected $183,747 less in sales tax last year. Deducting the portion of the sales tax that goes to the city from the amount it collected with the gun safety tax, Coombs estimated that Seattle gained only $25,000 from Outdoor Emporium as a result of the ordinance.
 Given the city pulled $275,000 from its general fund to help fund the "gun violence" (sic) prevention pilot program at Harborview General Hospital, the tax was never about raising money. It was about control.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Well, It's Not A Sten But It Would Work


When some of the politicians in California were railing on about 80% lowers and "ghost guns" (sic), if I remember correctly Tam said in response that you could get a 90% Sten at your local Lowe's. That comment stuck with me. Thus, when I saw Ian McCullom's video on the homemade full auto firearms made by Philip A. Luty which were in the Royal Armouries' National Firearms Centre collection, I was reminded of it.

Mr. Luty was a man of conscience who objected to the British firearms laws. He designed a 9mm submachine gun from scratch and published the plans to it in his book "Expedient Homemade Firearms" (which is available on Amazon). With a quick Google search you will find PDFs of many of his plans and blueprints around the Internet. I might even suggest that you download these to a thumb drive just because you can. I'm not saying to build one of them but in a TEOTWAWKI situation it might prove useful.

Unlike the US where the receiver is the restricted part, in much of the rest of the world it is the parts like a barrel which must take pressure that is the restricted part. By restricted, I mean subject to government regulation. As Ian notes, Mr. Luty wanted to show the foolishness of British firearms laws and paid for it with his freedom. The British police eventually caught him test-firing one of his submachine guns for which he was convicted and imprisoned.

Mr. Luty passed away in 2011 from cancer while he was facing charges related to his gun rights activism. May he rest in peace.


Meet Squish The Magic RINO


While I may have hated what Saul Alinsky stood for, I must admit his Rules for Radicals does come in handy when pushing for gun rights. Grass Roots North Carolina has learned this lesson and plans to unveil their version of Rule No. 5 tomorrow. That rule states "Ridicule is man's most potent weapon" and GRNC plans to make the most of it. They will have a new mascot to go along with their bulldog. The new mascot is named Squish the Magic RINO. You can guess where that name came from.

To protest the failure of the North Carolina Senate to bring HB 746 which included permitless concealed carry to the floor for a vote as well as to highlight those Republicans in the House who voted against the bill, they plan to have a rally in Raleigh against these Republicans in name only. Given that the Republicans achieved a super-majority in both house of the General Assembly through the hard work, efforts, and votes of gun owners, they need to be reminded that they should be dancing those that brung them. It seems that some of these Republicans would rather be beholden to Michael Bloomberg than to the voters of their own districts.

I think Squish makes a perfectly fine addition to the roster of mascots. Perhaps, in addition to Squish, there needs to be one called Squirmy because that is what I want to see these Rino guys and gals squirm.


Gun group to lampoon GOP RINOs

Failure of Senate to pass HB 746 will be topic of demonstration at NC General Assembly

At 11:00 am on Thursday, August 3, Grass Roots North Carolina will hold NC Senate Republicans accountable for the Senate’s failure to pass House Bill 746 (“Omnibus Gun Changes”) which would, among other things, bring North Carolina on board with the 13 states which have already passed permitless carry of concealed handguns. The event will be held at the Halifax Mall at the NC General Assembly.

Meet “Squish the Magic R.I.N.O." & Friends!

To highlight the fact that some GOP senators (including Senator Phil Berger?) seem to be behaving like “Republicans in Name Only” (R.I.N.O.s), GRNC will be introducing a new mascot, “Squish the Magic R.I.N.O.” and friends. If Republicans fail to pass HB 746 during or before the 2018 short session of the General Assembly, “Squish” could become a regular feature at GOP campaign events.

Take advantage of this highly photogenic event!

Squish and his friends will be cavorting under a highly photogenic banner proclaiming:

“NC Senate R.I.N.Os:
Giving Gun Voters ‘The Horn’ Since…?”

Event details:
When: August 3 at 11:00 AM EDT
Where: Halifax Mall, NC General Assembly, 16 West Jones Street, Raleigh, NC 27601

Monday, July 31, 2017

Rally Against The RINOs In Raleigh


The North Carolina General Assembly is returning for a special session on August 3rd. Grass Roots North Carolina is preparing a welcome for them called Rally Against RINOs in Raleigh. It is to remind the Republicans that they only achieved their supermajority in both houses due to the efforts of gun owners. The impetus for this rally is the inability of the Republicans in the House to pass HB 746 with a veto proof majority and the refusal of the State Senate to bring the bill to the floor for a vote.

If you are in the Raleigh area or if you can be in the Raleigh area for the rally on Thursday, the details are below:

LET'S REMIND OUR REPUBLICANS WHO
PUT THEM IN OFFICE.

Remember in the last election how the Republican candidates couldn't get enough love from pro-second amendment North Carolinians? Remember how they promised to be the stalwart guardians of your gun rights?

As expected, they have forgotten who "brung 'em to the dance." We know this because House Bill 746 is stuck in the Senate -- the result of petty quibbling and inactivity. Politicians are always at risk of becoming complacent (especially when their party holds a supermajority in both the house and the senate), and they sometimes need to be reminded of who they work for.

Worse yet: we know that Michael Bloomberg's out-of-state money has been hard at work in North Carolina, with a few well-paid operatives whispering fear and doubt into the ears of our elected leaders. This isn't a new game for them, since they prognosticate doom about every pro-Second Amendment measure that comes up ... and when these pro-gun bills are passed into law, their fears of doom are proven to be completely unfounded. Still, we want to make sure that responsible, law-abiding gun owners are being seen and heard by their elected leaders. Let's remind them that rich New Yorkers and a few paid minions don't speak for us in our state legislature.

The General Assembly returns for a special session on Thursday August 3, and we've planned a gun rights rally for the mall area between the Legislature and the Legislative Office Building. Most importantly: we need YOU there to join the chorus of North Carolina's law-abiding, responsible gun owners. Together, we can encourage our leaders to move House Bill 746 in this special session.

The demonstration will take place on Thursday August 3 at 11:00 AM. This will be a safe, fun, family-oriented event where we will introduce a new figure to North Carolina's political scene: Squish the Magic RINO!


IMMEDIATE ACTION REQUIRED!


  • RSVP on the GRNC website and let us know that you can attend the rally (https://www.grnc.org/august-3-demonstration).
  • Attend the rally! It will be located on the grass mall just north of the Legislative building at 16 W. Jones St., Raleigh. The rally will begin at 11:00 AM, but it's wise to get there early to alleviate parking concerns.
  • Please make sure that you dress for the press. We encourage professional attire. Please, no inflammatory slogans on clothing or signs. We want to show everyone that North Carolina's gun owners are the most civil, respectful, law-abiding citizens!

Sunday, July 30, 2017

A Modest Proposal


The Complementary Spouse and I were watching Sharyl Attkisson's Full Measure news program this morning. She had a story on about waste and fraud in the rebuilding of Afghanistan and its security forces. That is irrelevant to my modest proposal. However, seeing Afghan police carrying AK-47s got me to thinking - why are they carrying ComBloc firearms when they could be carrying firearms made in the good old USA.

The US firearms industry has an inventory problem. They overbuilt before the 2016 election on the presumption that we would have a President Hillary which would cause a mad rush to buy while the getting was good. Instead we have President Trump and the pipeline is full of ARs that manufacturers and distributors are trying to clear out. Tam called it a "gun glut" today in a post.

You only have to see the emails and flyers from companies like Palmetto State Armory and CDNN to see that prices have plummeted.  The subreddit /r/gundeals is full of posts about great buys on anything AR. The deals are not just on any old no-name AR. They include stuff like the Colt LE6920 for $799 and the S&W MP15 for $499. Conversely, it doesn't look like the prices of AKs have fallen anywhere as much. Romanian Wasrs are still over $600.

President Trump campaigned on "buy American" and issued an Executive Order  in April which seeks to maximize the procurement of American-made products by Federal agencies. The Department of Defense and the State Department both provide security assistance to Afghanistan.

While it is somewhat counter-productive to my own selfish interests, I would propose that DOD and the State Department begin buying up much of this surplus inventory at these bargain prices. It would then be used to replace those ComBloc AKs with good, American made, semi-auto AR15s. While as a consumer I would miss being able to buy good quality AR lowers for $50 or less, I also recognize that I have a greater interest in seeing firearms companies - especially the smaller specialty ones - survive as going concerns. The average Afghani cop isn't going to care if he is issued a Del-Ton, a Colt, or a Spike's Tactical. He's just going to be happy that he has a new rifle. Reequipping the Afghanis with AR15s will also provide opportunities for training companies to instruct the Afghanis on the use, care, and maintenance of their new rifles.

I'm sure the media would portray this as a sop to the NRA and the firearms industry. Nonetheless, it helps an American industry, it fulfills a campaign promise to buy American, it ties the Afghanis to us for training, spare parts, etc., it could be done at bargain prices, and it helps preserve the smaller companies. My modest proposal is, at least to me, a win all around.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Interesting Test Of Pencil Barrels


The original M16/AR-15 from Colt was produced with a pencil barrel. Later iterations of the rifle and carbine had a heavier and thicker barrel because it was found that the pencil barrel would flex when it got hot. The barrel flexing resulted in a change in the point of impact. The practical effect of this barrel flexing for the military was that shots ostensibly on target were missing the enemy at longer ranges.

You can see the difference in thickness between a pencil barrel and a "government" profile barrel in the pictures below. Both of these barrels (and the pictures of them) are from Faxon Firearms.

Faxon 16" pencil barrel

Faxon 16" M4 government profile barrel

Ian and Karl at InRange TV are doing a series called "What Would Stoner Do". The latest in their WWSD series tests the effect that heat can have on pencil barrels and the point of impact. They tested both a modern Faxon barrel and an original Colt SP1 barrel. Faxon claims that their proprietary method of building in stress reliefs mitigates the significant change in point of impact caused by heat. Part of Ian and Karl's reasoning behind testing pencil barrels is that a pencil barrel is a quick way to reduce the weight of the rifle.




I found this highly interesting as I am in the process of assembling parts to make a lightweight AR using this same Faxon pencil barrel. I got a great deal on one at the recent NRA Annual Meeting and decided that I "needed" another AR. I am also in the process of putting together a retro styled clone of the M16A1 using a mix of original and modern parts. This latter rifle uses a 20" barrel from Green Mountain Rifle Barrels which has the original 1 in 12" twist. My dad qualified Expert with such a rifle back in the 1960s and the build is partly meant to honor him.

Monday, July 24, 2017

While I Was Away - No. 3


The National Rifle Association's Youth Education Summit (YES) starts today in Washington, DC. It is a seven-day educational experience for selected students from around the country. They will be visiting various places in our nation's capital, will participate in discussions related to current events, and will have the opportunity to win college scholarships. The goal of the program is to promote active citizenship.

Congratulations to those selected from around the country.

From the NRA on the summit:
FAIRFAX, Va. – The National Rifle Association is pleased to announce the students selected to attend the 2017 Youth Education Summit (Y.E.S.), a seven-day educational experience in Washington, D.C., scheduled for July 24-30, 2017.  
As part of Y.E.S., students from across the United States learn the significance of the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the importance of being an active citizen as they visit memorials and monuments throughout the nation’s capital. Scheduled stops include the Capitol Building, the National Museum of American History, and the National Museum of the Marine Corps, the National Archives, the Newseum, Mount Vernon, and a safe introduction to the shooting sports at NRA Headquarters. Students will also participate in discussion about current events to have them learn from each other, to learn more about new topics. Additionally students will be assigned a team debate topic, which is meant to foster teamwork abilities, research capabilities, and leadership skills. 
Students who excel in the week’s activities through demonstrating strong leadership, public speaking, and debate skills will be awarded up to $15,000 in college scholarships at the summit’s closing ceremony. Following Y.E.S., an additional $25,000 in scholarships will be made available through the Y.E.S. Grand Scholarship, which encourages attendees to create a portfolio detailing the promotion of NRA programs, like Eddie Eagle GunSafe® and Refuse To Be A Victim®, in their communities.  
Any high school sophomore or junior in the United States is welcome to apply to Y.E.S. The summit’s application process includes a written essay on the Second Amendment, personal statement, transcript affirming a minimum 3.00 grade point average, and three personal recommendations. This year’s class of 46 was selected from hundreds of qualified applicants. This year we are excited to have students from 35 states, including both Alaska and Hawaii! 
The National Rifle Association launched the Youth Education Summit in 1996 (The state-level program started in 2002) to encourage America's youth to become active and knowledgeable citizens at both the national and local levels. More than $500,000 in scholarships have been awarded throughout the program’s 20-year history. Funding for Y.E.S. is provided through The NRA Foundation from monies raised by Friends of NRA, a grassroots fund-raising program in support of the shooting sports.

2017 Y.E.S. Participants

Alaska: Grayson Davey
Alaska: Sophia Puliafico
Arkansas: Alex Henry
Arizona: Kira Dean
Arizona: Cristian Lee
California: Emily Cupp
California: Brent Hinchcliff
California: Isabella Orozco
Colorado: Gage Paris
Florida: Dennis Hull
Florida: Peter Leonard
Georgia: Sawyer Williams
Hawaii: Iceley Andaya
Illinois: Krzysztof Gajda
Illinois: Natalie Seaman
Indiana: Matthew Burton
Kentucky: Andrew Sisson
Kentucky: Allen Slaughter
Louisiana: Canlin Dionne
Louisiana: Jonah Finley
Massachusetts: Amby Tierney
Maryland: Madeleine Sateri
Minnesota: Therese Minwegen
Missouri: Mary (Mikey) Schad
Montana: Hanna Antonsen
North Carolina: Jared Lockhart
Nebraska: Jamison Sapp
New Jersey: Zelan Von Kaenel
New Mexico: David Velez
New York: Reade Ben
New York: Gianna Guzzo
Ohio: Quinton Taylor
Oklahoma: Jonathan McCormick Jr.
Oregon: Owen Vredenburg
Pennsylvania: Lauren Klima
South Carolina: Brad Lehman
Tennessee: Lincoln Dillman
Texas: Kaitlyn Callaway
Texas: Stephen Garner
Texas: Denise Shaffer
Utah: Marlie Root
Virginia: Rylie Pennell
Washington: Simon Sefzik
Wisconsin: Emily Rasmussen
West Virginia: Katelyn Sette
Wyoming: Kaden Gaukel

While I Was Away - No. 2


Continuing on with the things I missed while at the beach are these two announcement from the Firearms Policy Coalition regarding bullet buttons and proposed ammo regulations in California. The FPC is a multi-state coalition of gun rights groups headquartered in California. They have been keeping a close eye on the regulations being developed for the enforcement of recently enacted firearms laws and propositions.

When you are headquartered in a state where the progressives have a monopoly on virtually everything, you have to fight back anyway you can. Showing that they have learned Alinsky's Rules for Radicals and especially Rule No. 4, the Firearms Policy Coalition is making the California Department of Justice live up to all those progressive laws dealing with public notice and freedom of information.

On bullet buttons:
SACRAMENTO, CA (July 21, 2017) — Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC) has obtained a copy of the newest version of the California Department of Justice (DOJ) “assault weapons” regulations. FPC has published the regulations at BulletButtonBan.com, a Web site it established in 2016 for tracking the new California assault weapon laws and regulations.

“FPC’s Regulatory Watch program has once again proved its value in ensuring that the State of California does not advance its gun control agenda behind closed doors,” said FPC President Brandon Combs. “Without this program, countless gun-owning Californians would be in the dark about their future.”

Last December, the DOJ submitted its first attempt at “assault weapons” regulations under the California Office of Administrative Law’s (OAL) “File & Print” process, which means that the DOJ believed the regulations were not subject to public notice or comment. However, thousands of FPC members and Second Amendment supporters sent letters opposing the secret process through FPC’s grassroots tools and, without further comment, the DOJ withdrew the regulations near the end of OAL review period.

In May (a quarter of a year later), the DOJ re-submitted regulations under the same “File & Print” process. It took numerous legal demands to DOJ and OAL to finally get OAL to provide FPC with a copy of the proposed regulations. Following DOJ’s numerous attempts at hiding firearm regulations from the public, Craig DeLuz, FPC’s Legislative Advocate, and FPC filed a legal action against DOJ (
DeLuz, et al. v California Department of Justice) in order to ensure that in the future DOJ complies with the California Constitution and Public Records Act.

In the end, these proposed regulations were summarily rejected by OAL a little more than a month later. And now DOJ has submitted almost the same exact regulations, appearing only to have changed the implementation date from January 1, 2018 to July 1, 2018. This new date was established by AB 103, a recently approved budget trailer bill.

“At first glance, the DOJ’s latest package of ‘assault weapons’ regulations are as awful as their first two attempts,” noted DeLuz. “It appears that DOJ keeps submitting the same proposed regulations, over and over again, expecting different results. Isn’t that the definition of insanity?”
The second announcement has to do with California's proposed ammunition regulations and the hearings seeking feedback.
SACRAMENTO, CA (July 20, 2017) — Adding to the growing list of its legal woes, the California Department of Justice (DOJ) was forced to issue a new regulatory notice and postpone a hearing regarding their recently-submitted regulations concerning new ammunition vendors and licenses. Many new ammunition laws were passed last year in Gavin Newsom’s so-called “Safety for All Act” (Proposition 63) and in Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de León’s Senate Bill 1235 (SB 1235).

As part of its California regulatory watch program, which holds the State accountable for the improper implementation of various gun control laws, Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC) recently discovered the new DOJ ammunition sales regulations. That new regulation was officially published in the State’s Friday, July 14 Notice Register, but wasn’t clearly accessible to the public until the morning of Monday, July 17.

“In order for citizens and interested groups to be given an opportunity to advocate for their rights and policy preferences, the DOJ must follow the law,” said Craig DeLuz, a lobbyist and spokesperson for the Firearms Policy Coalition. “We are here to make sure they do.”

On July 17, FPC delivered a letter to DOJ advising them that they had not sent any notification about this proposed rulemaking using the DOJ’s e-mail based notification system it established and solicited participation in for that express purpose. The FPC letter also noted that none of the regulation documents that were discussed in the DOJ’s notice could be found on the Attorney General’s Web page listed in the Notice Register. FPC concluded that the public did not receive proper notice and demanded that DOJ remedy the defects.

Just two days later, on July 19, DOJ e-mailed their entire regulatory notice list -- which they had initially failed to do -- and said that the hearing for public comment, which was originally scheduled to take place August 28, had been pushed back to September 12 -- allowing more time for the public and advocacy organizations like FPC to analyze them and weigh in. Additionally, DOJ updated the public notice to reflect a different Web page that contained a working link to the proposed new regulations and forms.

“When law-abiding citizens and small businesses risk fines and jail time for not following the law, the least the DOJ can do is follow the law themselves,” commented DeLuz. “While their latest move is a step in the right direction, they still have a long way to go. We’ll be keeping an eye on them.”

At www.DOJregwatch.com and its companion page, www.bulletbuttonban.com, FPC tracks DOJ firearm-related rulemakings and provides the public with links to the documents and updates. FPC’s goal is to ensure that the regulations proposed are legal, available to the public, and follow all public notice and comment requirements in the California Administrative Procedure Act (APA) and applicable laws.

So far, FPC has so far been successful in repeatedly thwarting DOJ’s attempts to create law by executive fiat under the guise of the regulatory process. Previously, DOJ was forced to withdraw its proposed “large capacity magazine” and “Bullet Button Assault Weapon” regulations. More recently, the Office of Administrative Law rejected DOJ’s second attempt at issuing “Bullet Button Assault Weapon” regulations.

While I Was Away - No. 1


We got back from our multi-family vacation to the beach on Saturday night. A good time was had by all. I will try to get back into the swing of things with a series of posts on thing I missed reporting on last week.

Paul Valone, President of Grass Roots North Carolina, is now be hosting a terrestrial radio show on WFBT, FM 106.7, out of Wilmington, NC. The show entitled "Guns, Politics, & Freedom" will air on Sundays at 5pm Eastern. The aim of the show is to give gun rights advocates new ammunition in our fight for these rights. Four episodes have broadcast and archived shows can be found here.

Paul has more details in his release about it below:
Drawing on 23 years as a leader in the gun rights movement, F. Paul Valone is hosting a new show entitled “Guns, Politics & Freedom” on Sundays at 5:00 PM Eastern as part of the “Sunday Night Political Power Block” on conservative talk station WFBT, 106.7 (Wilmington, NC), which streams live nationally at www.WilmingtonBigTalker.com

Recent shows have included interviews with self-defense legal expert Andrew Branca (“The Law of Self-Defense”) and constitutional law professor Greg Wallace (“The Second Amendment in the courts: What comes after Heller?”). Upcoming shows will feature internationally renowned defensive firearm guru John Farnam and widely published concealed handgun researcher Dr. John R. Lott of the Crime Prevention Research Center.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

SAF Sues On Behalf Of Foster Parents In Michigan


While posting will be sporadic this week as I'm on vacation with my family, I did come across this from the Second Amendment Foundation. They are suing the state of Michigan because of their policies regarding firearms and foster or adoptive parents.

From SAF:
The Second Amendment Foundation today filed a federal lawsuit against the head of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) on behalf of four Michigan residents, alleging civil rights violations under color of law for enforcing restrictions on the Second Amendment rights of people who want to be foster or adoptive parents.

SAF is joined in the lawsuit by William and Jill Johnson and Brian and Naomi Mason. The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan, alleges that MDHHS caseworkers told Mr. Johnson, a 100-percent disabled Marine Corps veteran who sought custody of his grandson that he would have to give the agency the serial numbers of all of his firearms. When he questioned this, the caseworkers allegedly told him, “If you want to care for your grandson you will have to give up some of your constitutional rights.” This was after the state asked the Johnsons to be foster parents to their grandson.

Two weeks later, the lawsuit alleges, a Gogebic County Court judge told the Johnsons that if they wanted their grandson placed in their care, “We know we are violating numerous constitutional rights here, but if you do not comply, we will remove the boy from your home.”

“The statements from the caseworker and judge are simply outrageous,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “This amounts to coercion, with a child as their bartering chip. I cannot recall ever hearing anything so offensive and egregious, and we’ve handled cases like this in the past. Blatantly telling someone they must give up their civil rights in order to care for their own grandchild is simply beyond the pale.”

The lawsuit asserts that “the policy of the MDHHS, by implementing requirements and restrictions that are actually functional bans on the bearing of firearms for self-defense, both in and out of the home, completely prohibits foster and adoptive parents, and those who would be foster or adoptive parents, from the possession and bearing of readily-available firearms for the purpose of self-defense. This violates Plaintiffs’ constitutional rights under the Second and Fourteenth Amendments.”

The Johnsons and Masons reside in Ontanogan, a small community on the north shore of the Upper Peninsula, on Lake Superior. Mr. Mason has been the Pastor at the Ontonagon Baptist Church in Ontonagon for nine years. He is also the Chair of the Ontonagon County Department of Health and Human Services Board.

“This is a case we simply must pursue,” Gottlieb said. “State agencies and the people who work in those agencies simply cannot be allowed to disregard someone’s civil rights.”

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Redneck Science


I came across this video thanks to Twitter. The host, 22Plinkster, is engaging in what he calls "redneck science". He is seeking to find out how many butane lighters a CCI .22 LR Velocitors will travel through. The answering is a little surprising.


Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Head Of Vista Outdoor Exits


Mark DeYoung, CEO of Vista Outdoor, suddenly retired from his executive position as well as the Board of Directors yesterday. The report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (see below) notes that he won't be staying on in any role with the company. DeYoung was CEO of ATK (formerly Alliant Technologies) when it split into two companies after merging with Orbital Sciences. He made the decision to go with the sporting and outdoor portion of the company rather than the aerospace and defense related portion.

Vista Outdoor is the parent holding company for Savage Arms, Stevens, Federal ammunition, Speer, RCBS, Weaver and Redfield scopes, and a large number of other well-known brands.

From their 8-K filing:
On July 10, 2017, the Board of Directors of Vista Outdoor Inc. (“Vista Outdoor” or the “Company”) announced that it has elected Michael Callahan, the Company’s current Lead Independent Director, to serve as interim Chairman and Chief Executive Officer effective July 11, 2017, replacing Mark W. DeYoung. Mr. DeYoung has elected to retire from the Company’s Board of Directors and role as Chief Executive Officer, effective July 11, 2017 (the “Retirement Date”).

Mr. Callahan, age 67, has more than 40 years of experience in the sporting goods industry, and has served as Lead Independent Director of Vista Outdoor since the Company spun off from ATK in February 2015. He has been the President and Chief Executive Officer of Aspen Partners, a Utah-based consultant to the outdoor sporting industry, since 2008. From 1990 until his retirement in 2008, Mr. Callahan served in various merchandising, marketing, management and senior executive positions with Cabela’s, Inc., most recently as Senior Vice President Business Development & International Operations where he was responsible for M&A and spearheaded Cabela’s expansion into Canada. Mr. Callahan is a member of the Board of the Midway USA Foundation and formerly served as a member of the Board of Bushnell Outdoor Products, Chairman of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation and Vice Chairman of the Outdoor Business Council of the US Sportsmen’s Alliance.

In connection with Mr. DeYoung’s retirement, the Company has entered into a Waiver and General Release Agreement with Mr. DeYoung (the “Agreement”). In exchange for his waiver of claims against the Company, the Agreement provides Mr. DeYoung a lump-sum cash payment in an amount equal to his current base salary ($1,081,500); a pro-rata portion of his annual bonus (based on the Company’s actual performance for the entire fiscal year); accelerated vesting of his outstanding time-based restricted stock, restricted stock unit and stock option awards that would have vested had he remained employed by the Company for 12 months following his Retirement Date; a pro rata portion of his performance-based long-term incentive awards that would have vested on the next vesting date based on actual performance; company-paid COBRA premiums under Vista Outdoor's health and welfare plans until 18 months following the Retirement Date; and the ability for Mr. DeYoung to participate in the Company’s Employee Purchase Program as if he remained an employee of the Company. The Employee Purchase Program allows all employees of the Company to purchase Company products at a discount. The foregoing description of the Agreement does not purport to be complete and is qualified in its entirety by reference to the Agreement filed as exhibit 10.1 hereto and incorporated by reference herein.

At the time of filing, the Company has not finalized a compensatory arrangement with Mr. Callahan in connection with his appointment to the position of interim Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. The entry of the Company of any such material compensatory or other arrangements with Mr. Callahan will be filed by the Company with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
I'm not sure why Mr. DeYoung suddenly retired as he was slated to stand for election to the Board of Directors in August. However, Vista Outdoor's stock price is now about half what it was merely one year ago. According to the conference call today, the Board and Mr. DeYoung decided to "accelerate his retirement".  Mr. Callahan has said he will not be a candidate for the permanent CEO position. They are denying that there is anything to read into the fact that the announcement of his retirement was very sudden. At least that is what they are saying.

NICS Checks Down For June


The National Shooting Sports Foundation adjusted figure for June 2017 shows a 10.9% decline from the same month in 2016.

From NSSF:
The June 2017 NSSF-adjusted National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) figure of 1,016,213 is a decrease of 10.9 percent compared to the June 2016 NSSF-adjusted NICS figure of 1,140,088. For comparison, the unadjusted June 2017 FBI NICS figure 1,888,266 reflects an 11.1 percent decrease from the unadjusted FBI NICS figure of 2,123,334 in June 2016.
You can see that graphically below:



However, if you study that graphic and read the numbers you should realize that the sky isn't falling. It is the second highest June on record and the NSSF-adjusted NICS number is still over 1 million checks. Gun sales are probably down from last summer when it appeared that anti-gun Hillary Clinton was going to ride into office after defeating what the media and the experts considered a weak and absurd Republican nominee. Of course we know now that she was the weak candidate and that Donald Trump wasn't that weak of a candidate.

As with all reports of NICS figures it should be remembered that they do not have a perfect correlation with firearm sales. In many states a carry permit substitutes for a NICS check. Moreover, the NICS check system is also used by many states for permit background checks and rechecks. The NSSF allows for these checks and rechecks when making their adjustments to the reported monthly NICS figures.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Want To Buy A Shockwave Or Tac-14 In Oregon?


If you want to buy a Mossberg Shockwave or a Remington Tac-14, you may have to wait a while. According to the Oregon Firearms Federation, the Oregon State Police who are tasked with background checks in that state have put a "hold" on all transfers involving those two firearms. They are now waiting on a ruling from the Oregon Department of Justice.

As you will remember, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives has decided that these 14 inch firearms built on shotgun receivers having an overall length of greater than 26 inches, and with a bird's head grip are not shotguns but rather generic firearms.

More on this from the Oregon Firearms Federation:
Oregon law describes “short barrel” shotguns as:

“a shotgun having one or more barrels less than 18 inches in length and any weapon made from a shotgun if the weapon has an overall length of less than 26 inches.”

However, Oregon law does not define what a “shotgun” is.

Under Federal law, these are not shotguns at all since they are not designed to be fired from the shoulder. These firearms are not considered to have been “made from a shotgun” either since they come from the factory configured with no stock.

While Oregon law prohibit shotguns with barrels shorter than 18 inches, it provides for an “affirmative defense” if the shotgun “was registered as required under federal law.”

Of course, these guns cannot be “registered” under Federal law because they are not regulated under the NFA.

As you may know, many of these guns have already been transferred with OSP approval. OSP has no word on what will happen to people who bought them legally prior to this new policy. OSP has promised to provide a copy of whatever determination the Department of Justice makes on these guns. If we receive it we will provide it.
 In some states such as North Carolina, there is a definition of any other weapon that more restrictive than the federal law. For example, NCGS § 14-288.8(c)(2) states that a weapon other than a shotgun with a bore greater than 1/2 inch is considered a "weapon of mass death and destruction" unless it is registered under the NFA. This would seem to preclude the sale of the Shockwave and Tac-14 in North Carolina. However, Oregon law has no such definition. Any move to ban their transfer would be stretching the law for political purposes. Unfortunately, given the state of affairs in Oregon in recent years that would not be shocking.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Finally Confirmed - S&W Buys Suppressor Maker Gemtech (Updated)


In what has to be considered the worst kept secret on the Interwebs, it was finally confirmed today that Smith & Wesson division of American Outdoor Brands Corp. is buying suppressor maker Gemtech (Gemini Technologies). The Firearm Blog announced it as breaking news on Sunday, July 2nd, and many people posted this to Facebook including myself.

Given that AOBC is a public company, SEC Regulation FD requires "companies to distribute material information in a manner reasonably designed to get that information out to the general public broadly and non-exclusively." A purchase of this magnitude would certainly have been "material". I kept looking for a news release on AOBC's investor relations website as well as for a 8-K filing on the SEC's website regarding this purchase. 8-K filings usually are simultaneous with new releases though a company has up to four business days to make the filing. I could not find anything official on the purchase of Gemtech.

While I assumed that there was indeed a transaction that was going to take place, not having official confirmation told me one of two things. First, that the transaction wasn't a done deal yet and maybe there was a snag in the negotiations. Second, it could have meant - and I think this is what happened here - that someone, somewhere jumped the gun on the announcement and violated a non-disclosure agreement.

I think the timing is right for both companies involved. S&W competitors Ruger and SIG both now produce their own suppressor lines. So, too, does Remington with their AAC division. The purchase of Gemtech now allows S&W into the game at a significant level without having to start from scratch. It may also signify a vote of confidence on the part of AOBC and S&W that the Hearing Protection Act will pass as either a stand alone bill or as part of the SHARE Act.

According to Gemtech's website, they have been in the suppressor business since 1976. While I don't know how the ownership of Gemtech is structured, I'm guessing that what we are seeing here is a situation similar to that of Crimson Trace. The founder(s) have reached a point where they want to relax a bit and this gives them the opportunity to cash out while still maintaining a presence. Thus, the purchase of Gemtech by S&W becomes a win-win situation for all involved.

The official release is below and notes that the current CEO of Gemtech, Ron Martinez, will stay on as General Manager.

SPRINGFIELD, Mass., July 5, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- American Outdoor Brands Corporation (NASDAQ Global Select: AOBC), a leading manufacturer of firearms and a provider of quality accessory products for the shooting, hunting, and rugged outdoor enthusiast, today announced that its firearms business, Smith & Wesson Corp., has agreed to acquire substantially all of the assets of Gemini Technologies, Incorporated ("Gemtech"), a provider of high quality suppressors and accessories for the consumer, law enforcement, and military markets.

James Debney, President and CEO of American Outdoor Brands, said, "Gemtech is widely recognized for producing some of the finest rifle and pistol suppressors in the market. Gemtech's strong product development capabilities, combined with our experience in brand management and our manufacturing expertise, will help us to efficiently develop both firearms and suppressors, minimizing our time to market for both product categories. We view this acquisition as opportunistic, allowing us to enter the suppressor category, which resonates strongly with our core firearm consumer, at a time when the market is particularly soft. These elements combine to make Gemtech an excellent fit with our long term strategy."

The company intends to complete the acquisition of Gemtech utilizing cash on hand and expects the transaction to close this summer. Ron Martinez, President of Gemtech, will continue in his leadership role as General Manager, heading up the company's strong team located in Eagle, Idaho.

UPDATE: On Monday I had written Liz Sharp, VP for Investor Relations at AOBC, inquiring why there was no release on the purchase of Gemtech and asked if the info had leaked prior to the official release. I got a response back last night after I had written this post. It seems that since AOBC didn't buy Gemtech but just their assets it was not considered "material".
Hello, John, and thank you for the inquiry. Yes, Smith & Wesson will purchase the assets of Gemtech in a transaction that we plan to close this summer. Since the transaction is an asset purchase and not deemed to be material, we announced the transaction internally to our employees prior to the holiday, and externally via a press release this morning. ... We believe this is a great fit with our strategy. Please let me know if I can help further, and thanks again for the inquiry.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Happy Free Fishing In North Carolina Day


The North Carolina General Assembly authorizes one day a year as "free fishing day". That day is always July 4th. It allows residents and non-residents alike to fish anywhere in the state without a fishing license or trout license for free.

From the NC Wildlife Resource Commission:
RALEIGH, N.C. (June 20, 2017) — July 4 is “free fishing day” in North Carolina where everyone — residents and non-residents alike — can fish in any public body of water from 12:01 a.m. to 11: 59 p.m., without having to purchase a fishing license or additional trout privilege license.

While anyone 16 years and older can fish recreationally in all public waters, including saltwater, without a license on July 4, all other fishing regulations, such as length and daily possession limits, as well as bait and tackle restrictions, apply.

To make “free fishing day” more enjoyable, the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission stocks a variety of fish in public, inland waters across the state throughout the year to give anglers a better chance of catching fish. Cool mountain waters are stocked with brook, brown and rainbow trout, as well as walleye and muskellunge. In warm waters, Commission staff stocks largemouth bass, American shad, striped bass, channel catfish and sunfishes.

In addition to stocking fish, the Commission has interactive fishing and boating maps on its website to make finding a spot to fish easier.

Authorized by the N.C. General Assembly and enacted in 1994, North Carolina’s annual free fishing day always falls on July 4. On all other days of the year, a fishing license is not required for anglers 15 years and younger, but anyone age 16 and older must have a fishing license to fish in any public water in North Carolina, including coastal waters.

"In Congress, July 4, 1776"


This is a document that I believe every American should read at least once a year. It sets forth in very elegant language why our founding fathers decided to become citizens rather than to stay subjects of the British Empire.

I think to today's social justice warriors. They are probably appalled by the language of this wondrous document which speaks of "merciless Indian Savages" and makes an appeal to the "Supreme Judge of world." I say this knowing that not a one of today's social justice warriors would have had the spine to do what the men whose signatures were affixed to this document did. That is to pledge their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor and to be willing to suffer the consequences of their actions.

IN CONGRESS, JULY 4, 1776

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.

— John Hancock

New Hampshire:
Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton

Massachusetts:
John Hancock, Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry

Rhode Island:
Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery

Connecticut:
Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott

New York:
William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris

New Jersey:
Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark

Pennsylvania:
Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross

Delaware:
Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean

Maryland:
Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton

Virginia:
George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton

North Carolina:
William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn

South Carolina:
Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton

Georgia:
Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton