Quote of the Day.

From time to time I hear people who think that the EU will eventually lead to more liberal gun laws here in the UK. They reason that because many of our neighbours have less strict gun control that EU law will eventually standardise to the French or German model. They are of course quite wrong. The EU is not in the business of providing freedom, it is in the business of control. – Lurch at Gun Culture

(RTWT) Thus it is with all governments, which is why government is best kept small and watched closely.

But starry-eyed idealists always seem to believe that human nature is not what it is, thus Supreme Court Justice Louis Bradeis’s warning:

Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the Government’s purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well meaning but without understanding.

Or as P.J. O’Rourke put it:

Neither conservatives nor humorists believe man is good. But left-wingers do.

Happy Thanksgiving.

And a link. Marko the Munchkin Wrangler expresses his beliefs. Hear, hear! Excerpt:

I believe that you cannot have a right to anything that necessitates a financial obligation on the part of someone else. You have a right to life, liberty, and honestly acquired property, not to any sort of monetary or material thing. The former merely requires your fellow citizens to leave you alone; the latter requires them to work for you free of charge.

Why is it that immigrants so often have a better handle on what being an American means than so many of our neighbors who were born here?

I Was Wrong.

I hope I’m going to be happy about it.

Apparently the Supreme Court has granted certiorari on D.C. v Heller. (h/t Say Uncle)

The elections this year should be especially interesting.

Expect to hear a lot about “legislating from the bench” and “activist judges,” too.

I wonder if there’s any way to find out who voted to grant cert?

UPDATE: And expect to get LOTS of letters begging for money from the NRA, GOA, SAF, JPFO, EIEIO….

As I understand it, Alan Gura – lead attorney and the guy who instigated all of this – isn’t taking contributions.

So just how much does it cost to write and file an amicus brief?

Read and Compare.

I ran across something tonight I hadn’t read in quite a while, and I’d like to share it with you. For quite some time Steven Den Beste was one of the finest voices of reason in the blogosphere before, for medical reasons, he pretty much departed the field and took to blogging about anime. But the piece I want you to read isn’t by Steven, it’s an email from one of his readers, a young man living in Spain at the time.

But first, I want you to read something else. Something by a young man living in Minnesota. I want you to read A Profound Divide. It’ll take you a few minutes, but please bear with it. Read it. Cogitate on it for a bit.

Then read An American in Spain.

Afterward, you might want to read the piece that inspired Den Beste’s correspondent, Steven’s Non-European Country, too.

And read all the links that aren’t broken from age. They’re worth your time, too.

Quote of the Day III.

I find he makes a lot more sense if you think of it as him switching between narratives, not being internally inconsistent. On the one hand, we’ve got the story of the Evil Empire of big government that will be (should be) brought low by the plucky heroes with hearts of gold, and then on the other hand, we’ve got the story of the benevolent rulers who used their infinite wealth and power to bring peace and prosperity to all.

In essence, he’s proposing we fire Emperor Palpatine and replace him with King Arthur. – LabRat in the comment thread of this post.

Not Fair, Dammit! NOT FAIR!.

Scully of Skywritings has decided to stop blogging. That’s not my complaint. A lot of bloggers do that. Many of them return. Many don’t. But she deleted her blog!

Sturgeon’s law says that 99% of everything is crap. In the blogosphere, I think Sturgeon was off by about one order of magnitude, at least. Technorati tracks over 112 million blogs. That means there’s maybe a hundred-thousand or so really quality ones out there, and it’s a needle-in-a-haystack search to find them. A fair chunk of those are on the right sidebar of this blog, and one exquisitely well-written one has now vanished into the ether.

Damn, damn, damn, DAMN!

Scully, you will be missed. I hope it wasn’t your job that made you do that.

Quote of the Day.

Americans should be thankful they have one of the last functioning nation-states. Europeans, because they’ve been so inept at exercising it, no longer believe in national sovereignty, whereas it would never occur to Americans not to. This profoundly different attitude to the nation-state underpins, in turn, Euro-American attitudes to transnational institutions such as the United Nations.

But on this Thanksgiving the rest of the world ought to give thanks to American national sovereignty, too. When something terrible and destructive happens – a tsunami hits Indonesia, an earthquake devastates Pakistan – the United States can project itself anywhere on the planet within hours and start saving lives, setting up hospitals and restoring the water supply.

Aside from Britain and France, the Europeans cannot project power in any meaningful way anywhere. When they sign on to an enterprise they claim to believe in – shoring up Afghanistan’s fledgling post-Taliban democracy – most of them send token forces under constrained rules of engagement that prevent them doing anything more than manning the photocopier back at the base. – Mark Steyn World should give thanks for America

RTWT – it’s worth every minute of your time.

Mark Steyn may argue that he’s “a misfit unassimilated foreigner,” but he’s wrong. He was born an American. It just took him a few years to come home.


I swear, you could only do this here. From AR15.com, a report that a retired airline pilot has built himself a full-scale Spitfire replica. With pictures! Here’s the description:

One of my best friends decided he wanted a Spitfire – so he built one!!
This is an actual 100% full scale Spitfire built from plans.
The internal fuselage is constructed of a 2.5″ chrome moly tube “birdcage”.
The exterior fuselage is bulkhead formers bolted to the birdcage and then covered with aluminum.
The wing is one piece and constructed entirely out of wood – Spruce.
The wooden main spar is massive, almost 18″ square at the center section and weighs about 600lbs just by itself.
The vertical/horizontal stabilizers as well as the elevators and rudder are also constructed of wood.
The canopy is an actual salvaged Spitfire canopy.
The lower forward engine cowl is constructed of carbon fiber while the top engine cowl is aluminum.
The engine is an aircraft 1400HP Allison V12 (originally from a P39).
The propeller is an overhauled DC3 prop.
Took him and a friend many years to build but it is a work of art

That it is!

Click on the links for the pictures.

Photo 1, photo 2, photo 3, photo 4, photo 5, photo 6, photo 7

The best thing about it? It’s based here in Arizona!