Interesting Commentary from Across the Pond

UK expat Phil B. sent me a link to an op-ed in the Irish Daily Mail, Denver shootings: the murder is in the corrupted mind, not in the legal guns. Not what I’ve come to expect from UK newspapers. Excerpt:

The Denver Dark Knight shootings: first thing to note – despite the uninformed Irish wails about American gun laws – is that the number of guns per head in America is irrelevant to such a crime.

If ownership of a weapon equalled homicidal intent, the ten most murderous countries in the world would include Switzerland, Finland, and Sweden.
The 15 most murderous would include France, Canada, Austria and Iceland.

The figures show that in recent years, Mexico has been down at 42 in averaged rate of civilian ownership of guns, below even Belgium and Luxembourg. Yet Mexico is so much a free-fire zone that last week the only way a nine-year old boy with a massive tumour could be taken out of gang-infested Ciudad Juarez and into an American hospital was in an armoured vehicle manned by armed US federal agents.

So if we want to know the origins of such slaughters as the one at the Colorado cinema, we need to look beyond the uninformed response of: ‘It’s all because of private gun ownership.’

It’s not.


Quote of the Day – Daniel Greenfield

From Sultan KnishSo That This Never Happens Again:

The edifice of government towers over public life. It is built for fighting systems, groups and “Isms'” and it can be used to ban guns, lock up the mentally ill or launch another one of its incessant public education campaigns. Its ability to stop an individual bent on causing harm to other individuals is highly limited at best.

That is where the illusion of control breaks down. The system can promise to stop gun violence, but it can’t stop a man with a gun. All it can do is exploit the tragedy for more power. Only individuals can stop individuals. The only control we can possibly have comes from living in a society where the people do the right thing… and are empowered to do the right thing.

But that is not the society that the gun-controllers and police-staters want to create. The society they want is a place where everyone sits quietly, offers no resistance, contacts the authorities and waits for the accredited branches of the government to do something. A place where everyone knows that if they do something, they may be arrested or sued by the criminal afterward. A place where people are expected to be willing to die, but not fight back.

That’s (formerly) Great Britain. 

Fuck THAT.

Want a Suppressed .22 Pistol?

The Arizona Citizens Defense League is giving away not one, not two, but THREE of them:

AzCDL is raffling off 3 (Yes, Three!) suppressed pistol packages.
Each package includes a Ruger 22/45 pistol with threaded barrel, plus a Gemtech sound suppressor. And, we will pay the $200 Federal Transfer Tax required for suppressor ownership.
Tickets are $10 each.
Each raffle ticket represents THREE chances to win!
Only 900 tickets will be sold.

The 3 winning tickets will be drawn on October 6th at AzCDL’s Annual Meeting in Phoenix.

The winners do not have to be present to win.  However, winners must comply with all federal, state, and local laws, and must pick up the firearm and suppressor from a federally licensed firearm dealer.  Additionally, if a winner does not qualify under federal, state or local laws for possession of the sound suppressor, only the firearm will be transferred and the winner waives all rights to the suppressor and associated transfer fees.  In some states, the possession of a firearm with a threaded barrel is illegal.  If you reside in such a jurisdiction, we cannot transfer the pistol to you.
Tickets can be purchased at upcoming gun shows and other events where you find AzCDL volunteers.

You can also purchase tickets online at AzCDL’s store.

While you are at our online store, don’t forget to renew your AzCDL membership (or join if you are not a member).
Raffles are our fundraisers.  Help support AzCDL, buy raffle tickets!

I’m in, how about you?

Quote of the Day – Victor Davis Hanson

From Works and DaysThe Demons of the Modern Rampage Killer:

If the suspect is charged and found guilty, I have zero confidence that he will be hanged. I have a great deal of confidence that over the next five years, his awful presence will pop up on a news broadcast. We can execute bin Laden and high-five it; we can incinerate over 2,000 suspected terrorists by video-controlled Predators, and have the president brag about it in warning away suitors from his daughters at a White House Correspondents’ Dinner— but we cannot do the same for someone who was tried, convicted, and sentenced for horrifically destroying people.

We the sophisticated with university degrees are supposed to know better: that hanging such a nightmarish criminal when convicted is both barbaric on our part and offers no statistical evidence that it will deter future such killers.

Perhaps. But society needs to be affirmed with a certainty that it has the clear sense of evil and good to try, convict, and punish the killer. Hanging Saddam or Eichmann, for all the controversies over their trials, at least offered some finality: they were evil and now are no more—and now we don’t worry whether Saddam was unloved, or the circumstances of Eichmann’s childhood.

In other words, I don’t care a whit whether the Aurora killer was a loner. I don’t care if he was unhappy or if he was on medication. Millions share such pathologies without killing a mouse. I don’t even know whether giving him swift justice will deter the next mass shooter. Yes, give the suspect expert legal counsel; call in all the psychiatrists imaginable; sequester the jury; ensure the judge is a pillar of jurisprudence; but if he is found guilty, I would prefer the gallows and quickly so, to remind us that we live in a civilization that prefers to remember the victims and to remember nothing at all of their killer.

Can I get an “AMEN!”?

Quote of the Day – Batman Edition

Our old friend James Kelly (much like Markadelphia) apparently just can’t seem to stay away from TSM, and comments (without links) on my post Why. Then, apparently suspecting infiltration, suggests that I have been stalking him, and leaving anonymous comments at other sites.

Can you say “projection”? I knew you could.

But that’s not the QotD. From that linked piece comes this picture, and this comment:

If you’ve actually seen the latest Batman film, you might want to note that (SPOILER ALERT!)

Catwoman blows Bane away with THE CANNON MOUNTED ON THE BATCYCLE – and suggests that Batman may need to rethink his “no guns” philosophy in the face of almost having his head blown off by Bane with a 12 gauge double-barreled sawed-off shotgun.

No, James, that wasn’t me, but I’ll certainly borrow it!  James’ response?

Alternatively, he might want to persevere with the no guns philosophy to ensure that Bane doesn’t have the 12 gauge double-barreled sawed-off shotgun in the first place.

And how would you go about ensuring that, I have to ask?  No, on second thought I don’t even want to try following James down that particular rabbit hole.

And I find it interesting that, while Batman eschews personal firearms, he seems to have no problem with vehicle-mounted artillery.

Odd, that.

So Gun Control Will Make Us Safer?

That’s what we’re hearing.  If the “assault weapon ban” had been renewed, the Aurora shooter couldn’t have killed and wounded all those people, and the entire country would be safer than it is today.  That’s what we’re told, right?  “More guns = more violent crime.”  It’s their mantra.

Problem is, that theory is provably wrong.

Australia has very strict gun laws.  In 1997 after the Port Arthur mass shooting, Australia enacted gun bans.  In point of fact:

In 2002 — five years after enacting its gun ban — the Australian Bureau of Criminology acknowledged there is no correlation between gun control and the use of firearms in violent crime. In fact, the percent of murders committed with a firearm was the highest it had ever been in 2006 (16.3 percent), says the D.C. Examiner.

Even Australia’s Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research acknowledges that the gun ban had no significant impact on the amount of gun-involved crime:

•In 2006, assault rose 49.2 percent and robbery 6.2 percent.
•Sexual assault — Australia’s equivalent term for rape — increased 29.9 percent.
•Overall, Australia’s violent crime rate rose 42.2 percent.

Moreover, Australia and the United States — where no gun-ban exists — both experienced similar decreases in murder rates:

•Between 1995 and 2007, Australia saw a 31.9 percent decrease; without a gun ban, America’s rate dropped 31.7 percent.
•During the same time period, all other violent crime indices increased in Australia: assault rose 49.2 percent and robbery 6.2 percent.
•Sexual assault — Australia’s equivalent term for rape — increased 29.9 percent.
•Overall, Australia’s violent crime rate rose 42.2 percent.
•At the same time, U.S. violent crime decreased 31.8 percent: rape dropped 19.2 percent; robbery decreased 33.2 percent; aggravated assault dropped 32.2 percent.
•Australian women are now raped over three times as often as American women.

And in Britain:

Gun crime has almost doubled since Labour came to power as a culture of extreme gang violence has taken hold.

The latest Government figures show that the total number of firearm offences in England and Wales has increased from 5,209 in 1998/99 to 9,865 last year – a rise of 89 per cent.

In some parts of the country, the number of offences has increased more than five-fold.

In eighteen police areas, gun crime at least doubled.

Last week, police in London revealed they had begun carrying out armed patrols on some streets.

The move means officers armed with sub-machine guns are engaged in routine policing for the first time. (My emphasis)

The number of people injured or killed by guns, excluding air weapons, has increased from 864 in 1998/99 to a provisional figure of 1,760 in 2008/09, an increase of 104 per cent.

Meanwhile, here in gun-lawless America, all forms of violent crime have been declining for over a decade, while more and more citizens have been buying (and carrying) more and more guns.

It may sound crass, but I’ll take an occasional Aurora if overall homicide rates are declining, and it means thousands fewer rapes, aggravated assaults, and armed robberies every year.

(Edited for clarity.)

Quote of the Day

Dr. Helen asked, What are your favorite science-fiction books? Best response so far:

I like the New York Times, the Washington Post, Huffington, and the LA Times.
CNN is also pretty good as is the BBC.
All present a very bizarre picture of an alternate reality, like a parallel universe or a different dimension loosely based on the real world.
I don’t like MSNBC because it has no connexion whatsoever to reality, it’s pure fanatasy.

Terry Eliat, Israel

One Small Step for Man

On this day at 02:56 UTC 43 years ago, Neil Armstrong became the first human being to leave one of these on the surface of another astronomical body. Three years and five months later, Eugene Cernan became the last man to do so, so far.

The last Space Shuttle touched down for the last time on this day one year ago.

Elon Musk of PayPal, Tesla and SpaceX fame has said that the impetus behind the development of SpaceX came when his son asked him, “is it really true that they used to fly to the moon when you were a boy?”

Now there are two-dozen or more private space ventures around the world. There is a plan to capture and retrieve an asteroid for commercial purposes. Two companies want to mine the moon.

If we can just hold it together for a couple more decades, humanity might get off this rock, and we might do it in my lifetime.

But it’s not looking too good.